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Battles

Participants Episode(s) Result
Raven vs. Neopolitan "No Brakes" Won (enemy withdrew)
Raven vs. Qrow "The More the Merrier" Interrupted
Raven vs. Cinder "Downfall" Won

Background

Both Raven Branwen and her twin brother, Qrow Branwen, were raised in the Branwen Tribe, a group of bandits based in Anima.

When the tribe decided they needed a force to counter the Huntsmen, the only real threat to their raids besides the Grimm, Raven and Qrow were sent to combat school when they were of age. The twins' skills and abilities garnered Ozpin's attention, and they were enrolled to Beacon Academy and placed on Team STRQ along with Summer Rose and Taiyang Xiao Long.

At some point, Ozpin revealed the secrets of his abilities, his longevity, and Salem's existence to Team STRQ, and he also gave Raven and Qrow the ability to shape-shift into birds to their namesakes. Deciding on investigating on her own, Raven's findings gradually made her become more horrified and disillusioned with the world, and she developed negative conceptions towards Ozpin.

She was once in a relationship with Taiyang and bore him a daughter - Yang Xiao Long. But having deemed the fight against Salem as hopeless, and deciding to stay true to why she became a Huntress, she left for the tribe, not long after Yang's birth, and eventually rose to become its leader, while possibly wanting distance herself from Ozpin. Qrow, however, never returned to the tribe, seeing them as "killers and thieves," and had believed in Ozpin. Raven saw Qrow's desertion as betrayal and his trust in Ozpin foolhardy, and the twins have been feuding with each other ever since.

Approximately seven years later, she met the previous Spring Maiden, who abandoned her responsibilities, and accepted her into the tribe. Despite giving her training in her abilities, Raven found her too weak to take advantage of her power and killed her out of "mercy," inheriting the Maiden powers as a result. Shortly after, she assigns one of her tribesmen to serve as her decoy. Said tribesman renamed herself Vernal to complete the ruse.

RWBY

Mountain Glenn

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Raven, about to leave Yang behind

Raven makes her debut in the episode "No Brakes", where she intervenes in the fight between Yang and Neopolitan just before Neo could deliver the killing blow on an unconscious Yang. Her mere presence appears to deeply frighten Neo, who immediately breaks off and teleports away. Yang regains consciousness just in time to see her mysterious savior disappear into a red and black rift.

In a post-credits sequence during the Volume 2 finale, "Breach", Raven and Yang apparently meet again, this time in front of the main statue at Beacon Academy. When Yang asks her who she is, she tilts her head down and removes her mask, revealing an uncanny facial resemblance to Yang before stating they have much to discuss.

Episodes Covering These Events

Vytal Festival Tournament

Qrow visits Yang after her singles round fight. Yang mentions that she saw Raven on the train, and Qrow confirms it. Qrow adds that he does not agree with her worldview and calls her dangerous. Nevertheless, he tells Yang information that can help her track Raven down.

Episodes Covering These Events

Meeting in Higanbana

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Their love for one another speaks volumes

Several months after the fall of Beacon, Raven meets Qrow in a tavern at Higanbana to discuss the whereabouts of a relic and if Salem possesses it. Parts of the siblings' background are revealed during the conversation, including their childhood of being raised by the bandit tribe that caused the recent massacre in Shion village. Raven is still angry at her brother for leaving the tribe, considering them their family. Qrow counters with Yang's situation, saying he is angry at Raven for treating her daughter as if she does not exist. Raven says she leads the tribe now and subtly claims responsibility for Shion. After receiving no answer on the relic, Raven refuses to tell Qrow whether or not she knows where the Spring Maiden is, and she leaves.

Episodes Covering These Events

Raids in Anima

Somewhere near Lake Matsu, Raven and her bandits stumble across a crashed cargo ship and find a weakened and injured Weiss Schnee. Feeling that the girl has great value, Raven knocks Weiss unconscious.

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Raven, as Yang confronts her

Raven exits her tent in the bandit camp to find her daughter Yang in company. She addresses her with congratulations at first and offers to answer any of Yang's questions. After Yang says she came as a stepping stone to get to Ruby, Raven is disappointed and would rather Yang searched for Ruby directly just as she did for her. She also considers Ruby a lost cause by her relation to Qrow, saying Ozpin is not outwardly truthful or worthy of trust. She leaves the choice to Yang, but she also calls Yang stubborn. Yang's retort leaves Raven to disregard her daughter until Yang and a newly freed Weiss almost fight the entire tribe. Raven accepts the situation and calls the two into her tent to learn "the truth".

Raven tells Yang and Weiss she and Qrow attended Beacon Academy to kill and not become Huntsmen, that Ozpin was very interested in Team STRQ and shared many secrets with them and that there is a being named Salem who leads the Grimm to destroy humanity. When Raven starts insulting Team RWBY, Taiyang and Qrow, Yang angrily yells at her and asks why she left her. Raven does not answer and instead offers to prove the existence of magic. Raven leaves the tent and later transforms away from her namesake bird after saying it is "what Oz did to my brother and me". Raven creates a portal and gives an ultimatum- either Yang and Weiss stay with her and learn more or go to Qrow and Ruby and face what she believes is certain death. Raven is disappointed to hear Yang say all she cares about is Ruby's safety. When Yang and Weiss ride toward the portal, Raven says she will not act kind the next time they meet. After her daughter leaves, she agrees in not having been kind this time either.

Episodes Covering These Events

Dealings with Cinder

One day, Raven is shocked to learn from Vernal that Salem has found them with four of her followers waiting for her: Cinder Fall, Arthur Watts, Mercury Black and Emerald Sustrai. During their meeting, she keeps a confident persona, orders her tribe to prepare to move and has Vernal display her mastery over the Maiden powers. Though after learning Haven Academy Headmaster Leonardo Lionheart is working for Salem, Raven loses her cool and states her refusal to get caught in the war between Salem and Ozpin.

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A deal with a devil

She struggles to negotiate, and Cinder and Watts pressure her with the White Fang's upcoming attack on Haven. Raven seemingly capitulates but asks for the death of her brother because he knows her possession of the Spring Maiden would mean she helped Salem. Though she knows Qrow has Yang, Weiss and Ruby with him, she proposes they ambush Qrow while he is alone and retrieve the Relic for Salem.

After Salem's followers leave, she has Vernal follow them to learn where they are staying. Raven then reveals her plans to take the Relic of Knowledge for herself to ensure the survival of the Branwen tribe. She shapeshifts into her bird form and flies through a portal to Qrow in Mistral.

She's next seen in Headmaster Lionheart's office after he ends a call with Qrow. She learns of his reasons for helping Salem and tells him there is no shame in wanting to survive. Though when asked who she was trying to convince, Raven abruptly makes her way out.

Episodes Covering These Events

Attack on Haven

On the night of the full moon, Raven watches over Lionheart in her corvid form as he meets with Qrow and the students. When Yang spots her and Qrow fires at her, she reveals herself and confirms with her brother that she has the Spring Maiden. Raven refuses Qrow's demand to work with him and his allies to defeat Salem, for to her, defeating Salem is impossible. Ruby then approaches her, reasoning that nothing is impossible as long as they work together and asking her to join them. Raven, however, coldly comments that the girl is like her mother and allows Cinder to attack her. After the revelation of both Raven and Lionheart's betrayal, a battle ensues between the heroes and villains with Raven fighting her brother. She states her disappointment in her family and is not surprised when Qrow cuts his family ties with her.

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Raven activates her Spring Maiden powers.

When Qrow moves to protect Oscar Pine from Hazel Rainart, Raven, Vernal and Cinder travel down to the Vault where the Relic is kept. The bandits continuously express lack of excitement at retrieving the Relic, and Cinder walks behind the two as they approach the Relic's chamber. Raven dons her mask and reaches for her weapon, only to be taken by surprise when Cinder freezes her. By the time Raven frees herself, Cinder has taken Vernal down and found no Maiden powers within her. Raven throws off her mask and reveals herself to be the true Spring Maiden.

The former allies fight, and Raven shatters Cinder's sword, a fragment sticking into her Grimm arm. Raven points out it is unprotected by her Aura due to its nature, and the pair quickly resume. As the fighting grows more intense, large stalactites fall from above. Raven is caught by Cinder's Grimm arm but sees an opportunity and freezes Cinder's feet to the floor long enough for a falling stalactite to crush her. Raven then leaps onto another stalactite, and Cinder propels up to resume the battle. The pair clash swords repeatedly atop the falling debris, and Raven slowly gains the advantage. Both combatants land hard upon the ground, their Auras badly damaged but Cinder clearly the worse for wear. Raven warns Cinder to watch her back, and her opponent turns and blocks a last-ditch effort from Vernal. Seizing the opportunity, Raven gets behind her and uses a lightning-enhanced palm strike, sending Cinder over the edge of the walkway. Raven encases her in ice for good measure as Cinder falls into the abyss, defeated.

Raven thanks Vernal for her last act of service, closes her eyes and proceeds toward the Vault door. She places her hand upon it, and it opens moments later, revealing the Relic of Knowledge beyond. As she nears the Vault, she hears a gunshot behind her. Raven turns around and glares to see Yang on the other end of the walkway.

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Raven parts on bad terms with Yang.

At first, Raven is dismissive of Yang, feeling her daughter has simply fallen in line with Qrow and Ozpin despite her warnings. When Yang questions her on what became of the last Spring Maiden, Raven angrily retorts that her predecessor was hopeless and thus killed her "out of mercy". Then, when Yang asks if Raven killed the woman she used to be, Raven desperately tries justifying herself and her strength and becomes enraged when Yang has the audacity to lecture her on the subject. However, when Yang points out Raven's fear of Salem, Raven becomes resigned, knowing she cannot refute her. The tribal leader makes one last attempt to stop her daughter but is rebuffed and bumped aside. With tears falling from her eyes, Raven apologizes to Yang before creating a portal to escape the Vault, leaving a black feather behind as evidence of her departure.

Later, Raven is heard flying over Taiyang's house in her corvid form. Another feather falls from her.

Episodes Covering These Events
Characters
Minor Characters