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The world as we know it is long gone. A war is waging between adults and children, specifically, the mysterious group known as the Aristocrats and their mutated young victims. The story focuses on several groups, who eventually all meet up and struggle to cooperate long enough to survive another day.

After a brainwashing serum malfunctions and changes every school-age kid in America into a superpowered mutant. Most are captured and imprisoned in the chaos of these discoveries, but some escape and hide out. The story focuses on kids from both results, a sanctuary in a subway tunnel and two Facilities, though they eventually all cross paths.

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The main conflict is obviously the constant struggle between the Aristocrats and the kids, but there are numerous internal struggles within the group, resulting from the emotional turmoil that they have (and continue to) suffered.

This is Why We Fight is a Roleplay based in an online roleplaying group. It started in 2013 and is the longest standing roleplay on the forum currently.


This is Why We Fight contains examples of:

  • Action Girl: Just full of them. Every female character featured is self-sufficient and kicks ass, whether it be physically or by using brainpower, and frequently prove that they don't need (or want) the boys to "save" them.
  • Adult Fear: The entire story is based upon school-age children being mutated by a mysterious, powerful group, and kids being killed in the scramble to capture them isn't rare.
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  • Anger Born of Worry: Usually explains why Sydney gets snappy with certain people (especially Cam), but also is quite prominent in Luke, who gets frustrated with Sydney's lack of concern for her own safety.
  • Bad Dreams: A lot of the kids are prone to this, which is fair, all things considered.
  • Badass and Child Duo: Sydney and Cam, most simply. Sydney is a super-strong, angry, confrontational girl who many of the other kids are afraid of. She is almost never seen without Cam, who is friendly, cheerful, and hates fighting. They make an odd duo, but it's obviously understood that Cam's safety is Sydney's first priority.
  • Beauty, Brains and Brawn: Aurora (often mentioned to be beautiful, and is the most mature looking of the girls), Jay (Acts as the leader of the group and as a big sister to most of the kids, and managed to keep them safe and hidden for half a year by herself), and Sydney (The physically strongest and frequently prone to violence)
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  • Beauty Equals Goodness: Zig-Zagged. The main cast of teenagers (and Cam) are mentioned to be fairly attractive (or adorable), but Cain, who is a liar and user and all-around bad guy, is often described as handsome and charming.
  • Broken Ace: Several examples:
    • Sydney, a surfing prodigy who was popular, successful, and surrounded by a happy family and beloved friends. She suffers a constant train of humiliation and defeat through the story, ending with her as the only surviving member of her family, who struggles with honesty and gentility, lacks any regard for her own safety, and seems to hate just about everything. She's getting better, though.
    • Cain as well, is described as being quite a successful student and charming presence in his school. His devolution begins before the disaster, however, as a result of his jealousy for his brother. Still, in the story we see him transform from a friendly, relaxed, brilliant leader into a sociopathic, controlling monster who lacks empathy and hates any challenge to his own power.
  • Beneath the Mask: Again, several characters:
    • Cain is the most obvious, as he presents himself as charming, gentle, and understanding, but actually seems to harbor a lot of hatred for the kids he protects (most likely out of the boredom that he is faced with). Almost everything he says in public is a lie.
    • Aurora has shades of this, considering her dark past and refusal to actually elaborate on it. She presents herself as calm, kind, and peaceful, though this is more of a coping mechanism than a way to trick those around her.
    • Sydney does the same, though her mask is shattered when she and Cam have their fight. She does still have a bit of this lingering, to keep herself moving and thriving. She is implied to be more scared and full of self-doubt, but acts loud and brash and confident to inspire those around her and to make sure that everyone still thinks of her as strong.
  • Berserk Button: a popular one, especially for a certain strong blonde,
    • Sydney is just full of them, because of her violent tendencies,
      • Threatening anyone she cares about is a sure way to get your ass kicked. Especially Cam. And Luke. She's a bit protective of her loved ones. (For good reason, all things considered)
      • Don't call her "Princess". It's a good way to get some broken bones.
      • Strangers touching her is a major pet peeve, likely stemming from the abuse she faced in the Facility.
      • Mentioning her brother, in any circumstance, will set her off quick. And that isn't even getting into insulting him.
      • Fell's very existence always infuriated her.
    • Luka, as another short fuse, tends to let loose easily as well,
      • Any threat to Aurora will not be met kindly
      • Flattery and fancy acts lead to plenty of annoyance from him, who tends to be fairly honest
    • Cam, oddly enough, reveals a serious loathing for dishonesty, with an unanticipated display of what his powers really can do
    • Jay doesn't appreciate any threat or insult to her leadership, as she is doing her best to keep all of them alive at all
    • Luke doesn't like when people are outright rude to his sister, and later, to Sydney (though he doesn't usually get vocal over this, considering her tendency to be offended over virtually everything). He also really gets worked up over boys being disrespectful or creepy to girls.
  • The Berserker: Sydney, full stop. She has no regard for her own safety, and can crash through just about anything. She gets seemingly even more reckless when she learns that Tanja is available to take care of her injuries.
  • Big Eater: Sydney again. Her power burns through her energy, so she has to constantly eat to fuel her wild fighting. When she is lacking in food, she tends to be more easily injured and more obviously affected by the toil that her power takes on her (such as when she headbutted the guard, or when she carries several kids across the state).
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Cain, a brainwashing jerk who is charming, funny, and clever in public.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Cam can have shades of this, if he doesn't like something, or if he feels he's being condescended
  • Break the Cutie: Just about every single main character, and the minor characters. Everyone has lost something, and some of the quiet moments reveal the emotional tax they seem to be suffering.
  • Captain Smooth and Sergeant Rough: Jay is the Captain Smooth by being more mellow and calm while leading the kids, and Sydney is the Sergeant Rough, being rude and fairly intimidating.
  • The Casanova: David tries to be, with varied success. Cain is this as well, though his is a mix of genuine charm and his mental powers convincing those around him to worship him.
  • Cheerful Child: Cam is probably the happiest member of the main cast, and tends to amuse the others with his innocent and cheerful insights.
  • Children Are Innocent: Cam again, resulting in him often being brushed off to protect him (despite the fact that his power is arguably the most powerful one seen).
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Fell, Reajik, and Larka suffer this, unfortunately, when their creator disappeared on fairly rushed and unfortunate terms with the rest of the group. Many other characters suffer this in the very beginning of the story, (Irina, Yenta, Deimah, Kristina, Kevin), with less extreme tolls on the story (as they weren't quite as deeply entwined with the other characters and plot).
  • Cool Big Sis: Sydney is this for Cam (and early in the story, for the facility kids). Jay acts like this towards all of the refugee kids.
  • Cuddle Bug: Cam is the most obvious example, as he is almost always latched onto Sydney. Sydney herself may be a case of this, as she is fairly physically affectionate with the people that she actually likes (there just aren't all that many of them).
  • Cute Bruiser: Sydney, quite literally. She's often teased for being "Princessy" (which Luke at one point remarks may come from her girlish, pretty appearance), and packs quite a punch.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: All of the lead female characters seem to have one (Sydney, Jay, and Aurora), though Sydney's has been aired out. Cain also qualifies.
  • Deadpan Snarker: A lot of the older kids, perhaps as a coping method. Sydney, Luka, Cain and the minor characters Jill and Tanja stick out as the worst offenders.
  • Deliberately Cute Child: Cam is mentioned to be angelic and adorable in appearance, which he seems to use to his benefit both against the guards in the facility, and against Sydney when she won't listen to his logic. Interestingly, this could leak into his power, which enables him to influence people's emotions.
  • Despair Event Horizon: The day that they were mutated is this for all of the kids, probably, as none of them are the same as they once were. Some specific examples include:
    • For Sydney, her brother's death. He was shot before her eyes, and then dies in her arms. After this, she is thrown into a deep despair that leads to her virtually losing all care for herself, and accepting her own hopeless fate. she gets better, a little bit, with the help of Cam and Luke.
  • Determinator: Sydney, though her reluctance and struggles with staying determined are actually expanded upon, as her determination to live is actually hinging more on the wishes of those around her.
  • Five-Man Band: The main heroes fit this fairly well
    • The Hero: All of them may fit this to a degree, but Jay is their most effective and best leader
    • The Lancer: Sydney, with a lot of headbutting between Jay and Sydney. (Though Sydney also may also act as The Big Guy)
    • The Smart Guy: Luke and Aurora both act as this, especially since they're surrounded by impulsive, wild teenagers
    • The Big Guy: Luka and Sydney can both act as this, depending on the circumstance
    • The Chick: Cam, even though he's a boy, because he's barely ever allowed to get in on the action. Aurora, as the most girlish female character may fill this role occasionally as well.
  • Forgiven, but Not Forgotten: Implied between Cam and Sydney after their fight. They forgive each other, but both note that something has inherently changed about their relationship.
  • Freudian Excuse: Cam lashes out at everyone who tries to help him and completely breaks Sydney's heart because she hurt his feelings. Essentially.
  • The Glomp: Happens when Cam and Sydney are reunited after she is presumed dead in the facility explosion.
  • Go-Getter Girl: Jay seems to be this, and from Luke's stories, she was very much this before the gassing.
  • Great Escape: Happens when the Sanctuary kids team up with the facility kids to bust them out (happens on two separate occasions, actually)
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Sydney, obviously. Luka can behave like this as well.
  • Harmful to Minors: The entire main premise, as all of the heroes are 18 or younger, and definitely aren't spared because of age. (Occasionally subverted, as certain instances suggest that the younger the child is, the more mercy they may find)
  • Heartbroken Badass: Sydney fits this fairly well. She's lost almost everything she loves, and is clearly broken up over it, but still kicks major ass.
  • Heroic BSoD: Sydney suffers one when her secret comes out and Cam declares that he hates her. She is so distraught that her own strength of will (and by extension, her physical strength) fails her.
  • Hot-Blooded: Sydney yells a LOT, and a prolonged silence or peaceful moment with her can lead to others wondering what's wrong with her.
  • I Ain't Got Time to Bleed: Sydney, when there's a job to get done. Especially after meeting Tanja, she'll ignore and fight through whatever, once she's focused.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Sydney and Luka both can be a bit rude and hard to get along with, but it's obvious they are both heroes and have people that they care greatly for.
  • Like Brother and Sister: Sydney and Cam, and Aurora and Luka (unfortunately for Luka) have this vibe
  • Little Miss Badass: Sydney, whose youthful appearance hides extreme strength
  • Little Miss Snarker: Sydney, full-stop. Jay has her moments too, as well as some of the minor characters.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother: Sydney is fiercely protective of Cam, just as she was towards her real brother.
  • Mama Bear: Sydney and Jay both come off as this. Both are champions for large groups of children, who they nurture and protect.
  • Morality Pet: Cam is very obviously this for Sydney. Luke as well, to a lesser extent. To the point that she thinks of one of them when faced with a chance to do something rash, considering their response and what they'd want her to do. It's implied that without Cam, Sydney wouldn't have become the hero of the facility, and probably wouldn't have fought to survive everything that happens to her.
  • More Than Mind Control: Cain makes the entire mall population value him and look up to him, so that even if he must actually use his power against any of them, it's a complete shock.
  • My Greatest Failure: Damien's death for Sydney.
  • Nice Guy: The best summary of Luke. He may be a bit of an oddball, and a worrier, but he's the most genuinely kind and mellow characters.
  • Nice, Mean, and In-Between: Aurora (the most peaceful and sweetest), Sydney (rude and fairly tactless) and Jay (acts as nicely as she can while prioritizing the kids' survival
  • The Nicknamer: Ezra is notorious for this. It stems from his tendency to forget people's names, but grew into a teasing quirk.
  • Only Sane Man: Luke, constantly. Aurora shares some of the burden, and they seem to find some comfort in each other's lack of impulsive behavior.
  • Power Incontinence: Several of the kids seem to struggle with control, but Cam is a special case, considering the dangers his powers pose to everyone in a permanent sense. He doesn't use his power to it's full ability, because when he does let loose, he tends to hurt people in a way that isn't intended (like reinvoking Kyosuke's amnesia).
  • Psychic Children: Cam's mental powers are nothing to sneeze at.
  • Put on a Bus: Basically every character whose rper ghosts the forum.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Cam sort of delivers one of these to Sydney. To be honest, a lot of characters deliver these to Sydney, with typically no real change.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Sydney (Red) and Luke (Blue), Luka (Red) and Aurora (Blue)
  • Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: Sydney and Luke fit this quite well, as he often finds himself dragged along after her.
  • Stepford Smiler: A few of the characters. Aurora may be a mild Type A, and Cain is a mix of Type B and Type C.
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: Sydney fits this fairly well. She's abrasive and angry and rude, but that doesn't keep her from being the most gentle, doting older sister figure to Cam, and being quite gentle with Luke as well.
  • They're Called "Personal Issues" for a Reason: Comes up after Sydney's secret is revealed. She defends her silence with this, though no one really accepts that as a fully proper excuse.
  • Trying Not to Cry: After promising her dying brother that she wouldn't cry, Sydney takes it upon herself to never cry. She finally breaks down (aside from when she was shot, and understandably couldn't stop from tearing up at the pain) when she wins Cam back.
  • Unflinching Walk: Averted, when the first facility explodes. The kids watching are all shocked and Sydney and Kyosuke both panic when the explosion occurs (probably because it leads to them being flung through the window).
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