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|“||I want to be strong. I want to be feared. I want to be powerful.||„|
|~ Cinder Fall stating how she desires to achieve victory.|
|“|| This is not a tragedy. This was not an accident. This is what happens when you hand over your trust, your safety, your children, to men who claim to be our guardians, but are in reality nothing more than men. Our academies' headmasters wield more power than most armies, and one was audacious enough to control both.|
They cling to this power in the name of peace, and yet, what do we have here? One nation's attempt at a synthetic army mercilessly torn apart by another's star pupil. What need would Atlas have for a soldier disguised as an innocent little girl? I don't think the Grimm can tell the difference. And what, I ask you, is Ozpin teaching his students? First, a dismemberment, now this? Huntsmen and Huntresses should carry themselves with honor and mercy, yet I have witnessed neither.
Perhaps Ozpin felt as though defeating Atlas in the tournament would help people forget his colossal failure to protect Vale when the Grimm invaded its streets. Or perhaps this was his message to the tyrannical dictator that has occupied an unsuspecting kingdom with armed forces. Honestly, I haven't the slightest clue as to who is right and who is wrong, but I know that the existence of peace is fragile, and the leaders of our kingdoms conduct their business with iron gloves. As someone who hails from Mistral, I can assure you the situation there is equally undesirable.
Our kingdoms are at the brink of war, yet we, the citizens, are left in the dark. So, I ask you, when the first shots are fired, who do you think you can trust?
|~ Cinder, giving her speech against Ozpin's cabal to all who witnessed the death of Penny at Pyrrha's hands|
Cinder Fall is a major antagonist in the American web cartoon series RWBY. She leads a group of anarchist revolutionaries seeking to overthrow Ozpin's cabal, which secretly rules the world of Remnant. Her associates include her subordinates Mercury Black and Emerald Sustrai, the criminal mastermind Roman Torchwick and Adam Taurus, leader of the Vale sect of the White Fang.
Cinder Fall is the primary antagonist of the Beacon arc (Volumes 1-3) and the secondary antagonist of Volume 4.
In the English dub and Chibi series, she is voiced by Jessica Nigri. In the Japanese dub, she is voiced by Yūko Kaida, who also voiced Jessica Bailey.
Original (Volumes 1-3)
Cinder has long black hair and glowing yellowish-orange eyes, while her fingernails are painted dark red. She wears a dark-red, off-the-shoulders, V-neck mini-dress with a yellow design. There is a blue feather-like accessory on her right hip which is at the top of an open portion of her dress. The dress ends in an upside-down triangular tail in the back, ending just above the knees. There is a baseball diamond-shaped keyhole on the dress' upper back at the same height as her chest. The sleeves end in a triangle shape, which is wrapped around her middle finger, with the gold designs of the sleeve taking over her the wrists.
She wears black shorts underneath her dress and has a black choker around her neck. She wears gold loop earrings with a black gem dangling from each. She has dark, glass, high-heeled shoes and a jeweled anklet on her right leg. On her upper back, she has a black tattoo of what appears to be a pair of high heel shoes placed sole to sole which forms a heart shape. Whenever she uses her Dust abilities, designs on parts of her dress of her arms, back and chest light up along with her eyes and earrings.
Post-Timeskip (Volume 4-Current)
Following the Fall of Beacon, Cinder's appearance went through a drastic change. Her hair is much shorter now and she wears a black mask over her missing left eye, and the scarring from said injury extends into a slight X-shape over the bridge of her nose. Cinder now wears a long, dark red dress with one long, wide sleeve hiding her left arm possibly to hide more injuries. The edges of the collar and the opening for the right arm are gold-colored, and the upper chest and left sleeve are decorated with golden designs.
The right side of her dress is open from the hip down with two gold-colored straps made up of interwoven ropes connecting the front half to the back half across her thigh. Under the dress, she seems to be wearing black pantyhose. On the right hip, the dress has a black rhombus-shaped gem set in gold-colored metal of the same shape with feathers of varying shades of blue extending from the bottom of it. On her right arm, she wears a long gray glove, the top of which Cinder has a gold-colored metal ring with curvy branching extensions going up her arm. Her right ear has a new ring-shaped earring higher up than the previous dangling black gem earring.
Cinder's early life is unknown, but she states that she is from Mistral. In her theme song, Sacrifice, Cinder is implied to be a former Huntress chosen for something special, but the details are unclear.
At some point Cinder became affiliated with Salem and began working with her to complete her goals. Cinder soon began recruiting people to aid in her plans. She first recruits Emerald Sustrai who at the time a petty thief, after seeing her use her illusion Semblance to steal a ring; Cinder promises Emerald that she'll never have to starve or steal again for the rest of her life.
Cinder soon after attempted to enlist the skilled assassin Marcus Black, but before she could get to his home in the mountains, Mercury Black is revealed to of killed him. Seeing that Mercury possessed as much skill if not more than his father, Cinder instead recruits Mercury to her cause. At Mercury's suggestion, Cinder allies with Roman Torchwick, a notorious criminal in Vale. Cinder, Emerald and Mercury then meet with high-ranking White Fang leader, Adam Taurus, and attempt to recruit him and his group as well. Despite their mutual revolutionary goals, Adam denies their offer, due to them fighting for a human cause for which he is unwilling to sacrifice his men.
Cinder's group then plots an attack on Amber, the current Fall Maiden, in an attempt to steal her power. After a fierce battle, Amber is defeated. Cinder then uses a mysterious glove to steal Amber's powers, but is interrupted by Qrow Branwen, who severs the connection before Cinder is able to steal all of Amber's power. Cinder and her associates then flee from the area and report back to Salem. Cinder tells Salem the power has given her a feeling of emptiness and hunger, however Cinder also admits that she finds it enjoyable nonetheless, and promises to retrieve the rest of the Fall Maiden's power.
Cinder, Emerald and Mercury later return to the White Fang camp. However, this time Cinder slaughters everyone at the campground except Adam and secures his and the White Fang's support with the threat of violence, as well as an offering of Dust along with large amounts of money to further fund the group.
In "Ruby Rose", Cinder is seen piloting the Bullhead that serves as a getaway vehicle for Roman Torchwick following the attempted robbery of the Dust shop, From Dust Till Dawn. Shortly after Roman gets onto the ship to escape Ruby Rose, Glynda Goodwitch appears and attacks the ship. Roman tells Cinder that a Huntress has appeared and Cinder quickly jumps out of the pilot's chair to confront Glynda in battle.
Cinder uses her abilities to cause a series of fiery explosions all around Glynda, stopping her attack on the Bullhead. However, Glynda counters by using the debris from the blast to try and attack Cinder. Cinder then deflects the attack with several blasts before Glynda instead attacks the ship. Cinder is knocked around, but unleashes a large blast that turns all the debris to ash. Ruby then uses Crescent Rose to fire at Cinder, but Cinder manages to easily deflects the attacks. Cinder then creates a group of explosions under Ruby and Glynda, while the two escape the explosions it give Cinder and Roman enough time to escape capture.
In "Black and White", she appears with Emerald and Mercury to reprimand Roman for his recent failure at the docks. After he complains about having to work with the "mutts" from the White Fang, she tells him to continue working with them and says she and her associates have big plans for him to keep him under her control.
In "Best Day Ever", when Mercury and Emerald return to Roman's hideout, Roman comments that Cinder "sent the kids again" and quickly figures out they killed Tukson, a Faunus Cinder had told him to eliminate. This upsets Roman, but just as he is about to threaten the two, Cinder appears, causing Roman to back down.
Cinder then precedes to berate both Roman and her associates; Roman for not completing his mission like she had asked and her associates for going against her orders to keep their hands clean while in Vale. Emerald tried to apologize by saying that she didn't think it was a bad idea, but Cinder coldly informs her it isn't part her job to think just to only to do as she is told, as Emerald responds with an understanding "Yes Ma'am." Cinder then turns her attention to Roman and asks why his mission wasn't completed, but he just motions to all the Dust he has been busy collecting.
Roman then asks for more information on the "grand master plan" so as to make his next string of robberies easier, but Cinder intimidates him into dropping the subject. She does, however, inform Roman that the first phase of the plan is over and he will no longer need to collect any more Dust, as they are now entering the second phase of the plan. Before she leaves, she tells Roman to have the White Fang move all the Dust to a new location that she will inform him of later that night.
In "Welcome to Beacon", Cinder is seen alongside Mercury and Emerald within Beacon Academy, having infiltrated the school posing as students. The latter bumps into Ruby and Cinder informs her that the three are visiting from Haven Academy. Ruby then redirects them to where they are supposed to go, with Cinder thanking her and the trio walk away to set their plans into motion.
In "Extracurricular", Cinder is seen talking to Mercury and Emerald about Pyrrha Nikos to which the two point out Pyrrha generally only uses her Semblance to a small degree to keep it overall hidden from others in combat. Mercury then says that Cinder could easily take her on, but Cinder responds that she doesn't want to simply overpower the enemy, but to take their power away from them. Cinder then orders Emerald to add Pyrrha to an unknown list. When Mercury says that he's tired of waiting, Cinder simply responds that they have a fun weekend ahead of them.
In "Dance Dance Infiltration", Cinder uses the distraction of everyone being in the ballroom to sneak into the Cross Continental Transmit Tower. After quickly overcoming all the Atlas Soldiers guarding the facility and then proceeding to upload a mysterious black queen chess-piece into the Tower's systems, Cinder is interrupted by Ruby causing the two to have a brief fight until General Ironwood arrives. Cinder uses this distraction to escape thus leaving Ruby alone. Cinder then quickly returns to the academy, transforming her fighting gear into a ballgown as she does so and thus evading Ironwood's troops by vanishing into the crowd. Cinder then has a dance with Mercury and tells him that once they have completed their mission at Beacon, the authorities will still be trying to figure out the situation.
In "Breach", Cinder is seen with Mercury and Emerald at the school, shortly before appearing at the battle ground where Cinder signals the two to confront the incoming Grimm. Shortly after this fight, they all are seen overlooking the city as Cinder remarks the day had worked out perfectly. Once Mercury brings up the fact they lost many Faunus' within the caves, he wonders if the White Fang will be willing to still listen to them, however Adam Taurus suddenly appears and reassures the group that the White Fang will listen to him.
In "Round One", Cinder is fighting with Mercury, Emerald and Neopolitan in the tournament as a team. They performed well in their first match and sent Emerald and Mercury to the second round. Cinder then joins Emerald and Mercury in the stands before watching Team JNPR and Team BRNZ fight. Cinder goes as far as saying that even if you know how a fight ends that it'll still be fun to watch.
In "It's Brawl in the Family", she learns that Qrow Branwen is at Beacon but ultimately decides that he is not a large enough threat to warrant changing in her plans in anyway. Cinder then uploads a virus into Ironwood's networks allowing to hack the tournament randomizer to match Mercury and Emerald against Coco Adel and Yatsuhashi Daichi of Team CFVY. As her partner fights Cinder decides to enjoy the show.
In "Never Miss a Beat", after gaining access to Ironwood's information privileges, Cinder looks through his files and finds blueprints revealing Penny's robotic nature. With this Cinder starts to formulate a plan to further cause distrust in the local government so she can destroy the kingdom.
In "Beginning of the End", Cinder leaves before Yang and Mercury even start their match to disguise herself as a paramedic after their plan to frame Yang is initiated. Cinder along with Neopolitan, whisk Mercury and Emerald away in an Air Bus to an unknown location, instructing Mercury to keep himself hidden so as to not jeopardize their plan, as she continues to rig the next series of rounds to further her plans.
In "PvP", after Pyrrha accidentally destroys Penny, Cinder commences her attack on Beacon by hijacking the tournament broadcast and giving a speech that reaches across Remnant about how the governments are keeping the citizens in the dark about what's going on while making it look like they are attacking the kingdom.
In "Battle of Beacon", Cinder is seen standing on the rooftop along with Emerald and Mercury, where she instructs the latter to film the Atlesian Knight-200s. When Emerald expresses remorse at the chaos, Cinder admires the downfall of Beacon. Once Pyrrha follows Ozpin inside the CCT, Cinder's eyes glow as she notices them, intent on following them and obtaining all of the Fall Maidens power.
In "Heroes and Monsters", she takes advantage of Jaune's distraction to send an arrow at Amber, killing the previous Fall Maiden and finally gaining the Maidens full power. Cinder then repels Jaune's charge and Pyrrha's magnetic door, letting them escape as she faces Ozpin. As the two of them prepare for battle, Cinder muses that "she" (Salem) was right about Ozpin's arrogance and cruelty.
In "End of the Beginning", as Cinder commences her duel with Ozpin, she proceeds to defeat him, despite his impressive efforts in countering her attacks. Cinder then levitates all the way to the top floor in the office, where she goads the Dragon into circling the tower. As she is interrupted by Pyrrha, Cinder proceeds to duel the former Maiden candidate, now stronger than ever, Cinder uses the Dragon's intervention to deplete Pyrrha's Aura, and wound her with an arrow to the heel. Cinder then starts to lecture her opponent about how the Maiden's power never belonged to Pyrrha and proceeds to perform an execution by firing an arrow to her chest, before disintegrating her foe with a tap to the forehead, thus killing Pyrrha. However, once Ruby witnesses the event, Cinder is shocked to discover Ruby's newfound power, as everything turns to white. Cinder survives the unexpected attack, but somehow she loses her left eye and is left scarred across her face.
In "The Next Step", Cinder attends a meeting in Salem's Domain, bringing Mercury and Emerald along with her. There Cinder enters a meeting with Watts, Tyrian and Hazel. Watts mocks on Cinder's condition, saying her attack on Beacon was nothing but a failure. Tyrian suggests she get retribution on Ruby by removing one of her eyes. After Salem enters, she criticizes Watts' "malignance", saying Cinder's efforts in destroying Beacon and the CCT, becoming the Fall Maiden and also killing Ozpin were ultimately successful. Salem proceeds to defend Cinder by revealing that her weakness to Ruby is due to her status as the Fall Maiden. Salem removes Cinder from her previous responsibilities to the group and forces her stay behind with Salem for "treatment".
In "Of Runaways and Stowaways", while being "treated" by Salem, apparently during an effort to regain control of her left arm after it was left paralyzed by Ruby's attack, a Seer comes in to report on their lack of success in finding Ozpin's relic at the ruins of Beacon. This prompts Salem to ask Cinder if she really killed Ozpin. After some hesitation, Cinder signals for Emerald to help her respond only for Salem to demand that Cinder say it with her own words. With some difficulty, Cinder manages to reply with a hoarse "Yes." Though not fully satisfied with this answer, Salem takes this as a sign for her Grimm messenger to keep looking for the relic.
In "Taking Control", Cinder is seen being pitted against Grimm to learn to control her Maiden powers. When she shows difficulty in defeating them, Salem angrily asks her if she lied about wanting to gain more power, to which she fearfully shakes her head in response. When Salem calmly tells Tyrian he's disappointed her for failing his mission to retrieve Ruby, Cinder watches in horror as Tyrian savagely mutilates a Beowolf in his fanatic rage.
In "No Safe Haven", after killing more Grimm while training, Cinder orders Emerald to create a vision of a kneeling and defenseless Ruby Rose seemingly pleading for mercy, Cinder proceeds to mercilessly engulf the vision in flames, while Salem smiles in delight at the sight.
Cinder also appears in the non-canon comedy spinoff series. Here, she is an over-the-top cartoonish villain that plots and schemes, but never does anything of consequence. She also appears in two of the many transitions; one, she blows a kiss at the screen, in the other she is chased by Zwei.
Cinder is capable of being ruthless as demonstrated when she delivered a killing blow to a defeated Pyrrha Nikos at point-blank range. Cinder maintains a calm and collected demeanor but also is content to fight anyone when it is deemed necessary. Although Cinder refers to her partnership with Roman as "cooperation" she is prone to show that she is his superior and only informs him of information that is necessary while keeping him primarily in the dark on what she is planning. Despite this she shows a intolerance to any form if failure regardless of the circumstances with a tendency to threaten all whom fail her such as Roman.
Cinder has a jaded and cynical outlook on the harsh nature of Remnant and is knowledgeable on its current state. While Cinder considers Ozpin to be arrogant and corrupt, She believes that her ends always justify the means she uses allowing her to commit seemingly any act without any form of remorse. Cinder is aware of the weaknesses of her plan and sets precautions to ensure they cannot be exploited as shown with her telling to Mercury to stay hidden when framing Yang for presumably breaking his legs.
As of Volume 4 Cinder is shown to lack her normal confidence and to be mocked by her colleagues until Salem herself orders them to stop. She also fully relies on her subordinates, namely Emerald, who speaks for Cinder as she cannot use her own voice. She is also visibly horrified when Tyrian, in a state of lunacy and despair, ruthlessly slaughters a Beowolf, showing she has lost at least part of her previously cold-blooded nature. However Cinder is shown to hold a grudge against Ruby Rose whom she wishes to personally kill for defeating her in Volume 3.
Powers and Abilities
Cinder possesses a high degree of skill that rivals that of Glynda Goodwitch. She can make extensive use of fire-based magical abilities without difficulty. Her primary technique at the time of their battle was a highly forceful blast of fire, which is powerful enough to block and knock back some of Glynda's manipulated debris. It was later revealed by the presence of her tattoo that Cinder had obtained half the Fall Maiden power prior this confrontation.
Cinder's capabilities also include summoning orange and black circles that can explode from the ground, as well as a powerful blocking technique, easily capable of withstanding Crescent Rose's bullets. This blocking technique may be Aura-based, as it strongly resembles a technique used by Lie Ren, but this is unconfirmed. It should also be noted that before her powers were stolen, Amber was seen doing the same thing with Emerald, which seems to indicate that this is part of her Maiden powers.
Noticeably, some of Cinder's abilities emit a high-pitched screaming sound when cast. Her eyes often glow brighter as evidence of the Maiden powers, since Amber's eyes did the same, and Cinder's eyes hadn't until after she'd completely become the Fall Maiden.
Cinder has a strong command over Dust, often wielding and manipulating it in battle. She's seen transforming a cloud of dust she had previously dispensed into several shards of what appears to be glass, which she proceeded to launch as projectiles. She is even able to conjure a Dust-based pair of dual black glass, possibly obsidian, sword constructs and then seamlessly transform them into a bow with a series of black glass arrows ready to fire. Her most notable use of reforming her weapons occurred when she reformed an arrow as Pyrrha Nikos shattered it with her shield, maintaining its forward force and successfully piercing Pyrrha. Cinder is also capable of triggering this ability to change the shape of Dust-imbued clothes, as shown by her instantly changing into a dress for the dance.
She is quite skilled in both unarmed combat and swordsmanship, using such skills to fend off numerous Atlas Soldiers at once and easily defeating them without being hit once. She was confident enough in her skills to walk right up to them, despite the fact that this alerted them to her presence. Such confidence is also seen when she decides to reveal herself to Ruby, smiling while doing so and attacking the young Huntress instantly. She possesses enhanced speed, strength, reflexes and endurance.
Her marksmanship skills are shown during her infiltration and her plan to capture Amber's powers in "Dance Dance Infiltration" and "Beginning of the End", respectively. She is capable of launching three arrows at once with great accuracy and pragmatically exploiting any advantage whenever possible, such as launching an arrow in Amber's back just as the latter was about to kill Emerald.
After acquiring the rest of the Maiden powers, she is able to utilize devastating magma attacks and gains the ability to fly and levitate freely. Additionally, she is strong enough to withstand great force, and can reform the shape of her projectiles and use her fire-based power to melt items in her grip.
Cinder has shown to be quite stealthy as well, having sneaked around a guard to easily knock him out. She is skilled enough in infiltrating places without getting caught, able to calculate so that she can escape and blend in, as seen in "Dance Dance Infiltration". She also successfully infiltrated Beacon Academy along with her partners Mercury and Emerald without raising suspicion to herself, and having others believe them all to be from Haven Academy.
She also seems to be skilled in manipulating people, having infiltrated Beacon Academy along with her partners Mercury and Emerald without raising suspicion to herself, and having others believe her to be from Haven Academy. However, it is unknown if anyone knows about her affiliation with Salem or the criminal world outside of Ozpin's group.
|“||How very disappointing, Roman.||„|
|~ Cinder, commenting on Roman Torchwick's failure in a recent operation|
|“||We have big plans for you, Roman... All we ask is... a little cooperation.||„|
|~ Cinder, ordering Roman to continue working with the White Fang|
|“||You'll know what you need when you need to know.||„|
|~ Cinder, deflecting Roman's question regarding Cinder's group "grand master plan"|
|“||Don't think... obey.||„|
|~ Cinder, to Emerald Sustrai|
|“||We're proceeding to phase two.||„|
|~ Cinder, regarding her plan's progress|
|“||People assume that she's fated for victory, when she's really taking fate into her own hands.||„|
|~ Cinder on Pyrrha Nikos' fighting prowess|
|“||It's not about overpowering an enemy. It's about taking away what power they have. And we will, in time.||„|
|~ Cinder, to Emerald|
|“||They'd be scratching their heads long after we finished what we came here for.||„|
|~ Cinder, to Mercury Black|
|“||Enjoy the rest of the night. After all, it is a party.||„|
|~ Cinder, to Mercury|
|“||All in all, I call today a success.||„|
|~ Cinder, regarding the Grimm invasion to Vale|
|“||Even if you know how the story ends, that doesn't make it any less fun to watch.||„|
|~ Cinder on foregone conclusions|
|“||You will question everything you know.||„|
|~ Cinder to Emerald|
|“||The Huntsman severed the connection before it was complete... Yes. It's... an emptiness. It burns. Like hunger. I like it... Yes. I will claim what is ours... Thank you.||„|
|~ Cinder's half of a conversation with an unknown person.|
|~ Cinder, admiring the havoc unfolding below|
|~ Cinder, sardonically relishing in the chaos she has wrought|
|“||Do not miss what happens next.||„|
|~ Cinder, just before the arrival of the Grimm Dragon|
|“||This whole time... Right beneath our feet...||„|
|~ Cinder, to Ozpin|
|“||She was right about you... Such arrogance...||„|
|~ Cinder, to Ozpin|
|“||Shhh... This is your home now.||„|
|~ Cinder, to the Grimm Dragon|
|“||It's unfortunate you were promised a power that was never truly yours. But take comfort in knowing that I will use it in ways you would never had imagined.||„|
|~ Cinder, to Pyrrha Nikos|
|~ Cinder, on Ruby's activation of her silver eyes|
- Cinder alludes to Cinderella from the fairy tale of the same name.
- In the Volume 1 cast commentary, it is mentioned that the shoes she wears with her red dress are made of glass. This is supported by the "clink" noises they make in Ruby Rose. This references the fact that Cinderella wore glass shoes to the ball.
- Cinder's ability to manipulate glass may be a reference to Cinderella's signature glass shoes.
- Miles Luna and Kerry Shawcross made a joke that they "originally wanted to call her Cinder Ella", using the Spanish word "ella" (pronounced "eya"), meaning "she".
- Her emblem, which is tattooed on her back, appears to be a pair of high-heel slippers placed sole to sole, making a heart in the empty space between them.
- In the episode "Dance Dance Infiltration", Mercury tells her that she should return to the dance by midnight, and she manages to make it back just before midnight. On her way back, she transforms her stealth outfit into a black dress and ditches her glass masquerade mask. This references how Cinderella needed to leave the ball by midnight, as that was when the spell that created her outfit and carriage would wear off.
- The first part of her name alludes to a partially or mostly burned piece of coal or wood, represented in her fire abilities. Her surname alludes to Fall, the American name for one of the four calendar seasons, which brings to mind amber and brown colors.
- Her ability to manipulate Dust woven into clothing may be a possible reference to her voice actress' career as a cosplayer and model (in regards to the production of costumes).
- Her themes are "Sacrifice", which can be heard during the end credits of the Volume 2 finale "Breach", and "When It Falls" which is used as the opening theme for Volume 3.
- Cinder's facial structure, especially her hairstyle, bears vague resemblance with Jenna Angel's, whom is a major antagonist of Digital Devil Saga series. In addition, both are major antagonists as well.
- Cinder has a similar appearance to that of Lust.
- She is considered to be one of the most divisive villains in the RWBY franchise for killing the fan favorite character of Pyrrha, similar to Adam Taurus for his mutilation of Yang.
- However, while Cinder suffered substantial damage (both physically and mentally) for her actions, Adam has thus far evaded any form of consequence.