“No, you don’t!” says Soul. He transforms out of weapon form but leaves his left arm as his scythe blade and hurries to intercept Ruby. Ruby uses her Petal Burst to avoid Soul’s attack. She retrieves her weapon, whirls it around to jam the blade into the ground and begins firing. Soul uses his scythe arm to block the gunfire while Maka races around to flank Ruby. Maka, taking advantage when the opportunity presents itself, charges Ruby and drives her fist into the girl’s face before she can react. Setting her feet and shoving with all her might, she hurls the red hooded Huntress across the ground. While tumbling, Ruby manages to plant one hand on the ground to flip herself around and slam the blade of Crescent Rose into the ground to anchor herself. She then fires a powerful blast, using the recoil to flip backward. Maka dives out of the way in time, but barely manages to avoid the follow up shot. Ruby begins peppering the field with gunfire, using Crescent Rose in its rifle form.
“Maka!” Soul rushes to his meister, putting himself between her and the red-haired girl’s gunfire. He uses both scythe arms to defend them. These shots have more impact, but he is able to withstand them.
“Soul, are you alright?” Maka asked.
“Yeah, I’m good,” Soul replies. He then asks if she can flank Ruby again.
“I don’t think so. She’s firing faster this time,” Maka tells him.
“Then we just have to hold here and wait,” Soul grated out between each blast from Ruby.
“Wait for what?”
No sooner than did Maka question it, Ruby stops shooting at them.
“For that. Let’s go!” Soul said urgently. He then breaks into a charge with Maka trailing behind him. Soul had figured out that Ruby’s weapon, like any other gun, has a certain amount of ammunition. He had noticed earlier Ruby changing an ammo clip. He wasn’t sure how many rounds each clip has, but he did know that he had to force Ruby to waste her ammo. In mid-stride, Soul transforms into his flying scythe form. Maka hops on him and they take off like a rocket.
Ruby manages to replace the ammunition clip on Crescent Rose but Maka and Soul are fast upon her. She quickly defends against the incoming strike and counters with one of her own. Maka swings Soul up to deflect the strike and whirls around with a fast slash. Ruby blocks and spin her weapon around for another strike. Flipping over this, Maka lands and goes for Ruby’s feet. The nimble red-haired Huntress cartwheels from danger and begins weaving her body around as Maka comes at her with ferocious swipes and slashes. She parries Maka and fires back with furious strikes of her own. The DWMA student dances around the attacks gracefully. The two girls briefly lock their weapons before breaking away and throwing themselves back into the fray. Strike for strike. Slash for slash. Counter for counter. They attack each other with incredible speed and amazing finesse. Maka deflects another strike from Ruby and issues a headbutt. Ruby answers in kind. A quick flourish of attacks, Ruby drives her weapon down, impaling the blade in the ground. Maka jumps back to avoid the strike but her safety is uninsured when Ruby jumps forward to dropkick Maka in her face. The red-haired Huntress then swings herself around, takes up her weapon and lands several strikes on the blonde girl before firing a blast that sends her tumbling across the ground. Ruby holds her low stance. She can see her opponent is tough and there is the possibility that she will not go down easily.
A couple moments pass by. Maka begins to stand. As she rose, Ruby took notice that something is different about her. The cloaked school uniform Maka was wearing is now replaced with a black evening gown. She also took notice to her weapon. It is now ebony in color and the blade resembled the keys of a piano. Now standing at her full height, Maka shoots a fierce gaze at Ruby.
“You good?” Soul asked his partner.
“Yeah, thanks,” Maka replied with a stern tone.
Just before Ruby Rose went on the assault a few moments ago, Soul had used his Soul Wavelength to activate the Black Blood within himself. Sometime ago, Soul was infected with the Black Blood when he and Maka fought against a meister named Crona, who is the child of the Snake Witch, Medusa. Medusa experimented on her own child Crona to turn Crona into a Kishin, a being with an evil soul. The Black Blood made Crona’s body impervious to Maka and Soul’s attacks. The Black Blood gave whoever possessed it a body that is nearly impervious to attacks. However, the Black Blood had a dangerous side effect – it robs the infected individual of their sanity. Maka experienced this when Soul used the Black Blood infecting him to make his partner immune to physical attacks at the cost of her sanity. Luckily, Soul was able to help Maka regain her senses. Since that time, Soul has become a Death Scythe and Maka has furthered her Anti-Madness Wavelength, which allows her to resist the insanity of the Black Blood. This has led to them now being able to use the Black Blood to greatly increase their defense.
“Well now, this is interesting. It’s been a while, Evans,” says the little demon that appears in Soul’s subconsciousness. This demon, wearing a pin striped suit, represents the madness of the Black Blood.
Soul has become accustomed to the little demon since it first appeared after Soul was cut across the chest by the Demon Sword Ragnarok, wielded by Crona. “You’re a real pain in the ass. And I thought I told you before to stop using my last name,” he says dispassionately. Though Soul has grown accustomed to the little demon, he has very little tolerance for him.
“We don’t talk much anymore. I so do miss our enlightening conversations,” said the little demon. “So, what brings you here again?”
“Not that it’s any of your business. We’re dealing with a witch and she’s proving to be a bigger pain in the ass than you are,” Soul tells him.
“Hmm, a witch you say. It is safe to assume that the treaty is now over, and we can get back to having fun again,” the little demon says with a cynical gleam.
“Not a chance,” Soul replied, cutting down the little demon’s expectations. “We just need to take this witch in for questioning. However, she’s not going quietly.”
“Are you certain she is who she seems to be?” asked the little demon.
“Whaddaya mean by that?”
“Suppose this little red witch is not whom she seems to be, but rather someone else entirely,” the demon replied cryptically.
Soul stares at the demon. He doesn’t have time for his games. He likes them even less. However, the annoyingly cryptic demon has useful information laced within his words. Soul has to read in between the lines, no matter how much it bothered him. “So what are you getting at?”
The little demon chuckles. “Well, let’s just say ‘things may be what they seem,’” he says with a snicker.
“Tch. Whatever,” Soul says, turning his back to the little demon. He had no time for the demon’s games or cryptic riddles. His focus is on helping Maka defeat Ruby and return with her back to DWMA.
Maka stares down Ruby with intensity. What was supposed to be a simple takedown has turned into a furious battle with an opponent who is intent on using all their strength to fight back. She and Soul have come to the realization that if they are to take in this witch Ruby Rose, it will have to be by force.