Author: outerelf PM
He had been pretending for such a long time now. He needed to get drunk. And the poor, poor spy was in for a suprise when he stumbled across him.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Red Alert & Mirage - Words: 1,945 - Reviews: 16 - Favs: 45 - Follows: 5 - Published: 10-28-08 - Status: Complete - id: 4623380
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Mirage stepped along the hallways, invisible. He wasn't invisible because of a mission, he simply didn't wish to be disturbed. He was too busy thinking over the past few battle, remembering a small quirk he had noticed.
Red Alert, one of the most spazzy mechs onboard the Ark, during battle could be utterly calm and in possession of himself. Only once had Mirage even heard Red Alert glitching on the battlefield, and apparently a piece of the ceiling had fallen onto him, enough to make anyone's CPU go out of whack. And the details about that incident were sketchy enough to make Mirage wonder if it had actually happened.
No one would talk about what happened to the Negavator- Mirage paused as a slight sound came from the supposed to be abandoned storage room.
Idly he thought about simply passing by. After all, many mechs used different storerooms to interface. The sound came back reminiscent of an energon cube being tossed up and down. Curious, he peeked inside.
Mirage wondered if what he was seeing was truly what was happening. It appeared Red Alert, out of all mechs, was sitting on the ground, sipping at one of Ratchets missing high-grade cubes. The spy wondered if Red Alert had his paranoia justified for once by being captured, and then being replaced with a look-alike.
The security director turned, and grinned drunkenly. "Mirage!" It was badly slurred cybertronian. "Just the mech! Come on in. I got Ratchets best."
Mirage distantly realized his shielding ability had turned off from surprise, but already his feet were moving towards the red and white mech. "Red Alert? What are you doing drinking?"
Red Alert waved Mirage onto a box opposite of him. Mirage took it warily, wondering if the security director would randomly attack him. He had heard the rumors after all— "Tell me Mirage, has there ever been a time in your life when you decided all the lies of your life were too much?"
Mirage stiffened. "I have no idea what you—"
Red Alerts bemused, drunken optics looked steadily up at the spy. He was sitting cross-legged on the floor, back against the large crates. Mirages words died off in his vocalizer. Red Alert silently handed over a cube, and Mirage took it. Red Alert smirked.
Mirage wondered if Red Alert ever smiled. It was always a smirk or a sneer. Never a smile. Only Inferno knows I suppose. "You're probably wondering why I'm sitting here, getting drunk, don't you? Especially without Inferno."
Mirages face didn't change. Red Alert smirk edged towards a sneer. "Yes, I always have to have Inferno."
Mirage wondered if he was supposed to reply to Red Alert. Red Alert seemed more then able to keep up a one-sided conversation however. "It's a little odd, isn't it? I've done so much for Inferno, and everyone thinks Inferno's done so much for me."
Red Alert fell silent, staring at his cube. Mirage, now fully curious, slipped onto the floor to look at Red Alert better. The secretive, paranoid Security Director did not trust easily, though he was one of the more trustworthy mechs. It was a bit of an odd combination, but one that worked in the form of Security Director.
Most mechs, unless paranoid as Red Alert, could go into recharge without having their gun with them. Usually it was just in reaching distance.
The security director snorted, as if reading Mirages thoughts. "What do you mean you've done so much for Inferno?" Mirage prompted, hoping to draw out more information from Red Alert.
"Not telling. It's a secret. A secret I swore never to tell."
Mirage poured some of the energon in his own untouched cube into Red Alerts. Red Alert downed it eagerly, and sighed in contentment. "Ratchet really knows how to make a good brew."
Mirage decided to change tack in the conversation. "Red Alert, what did you say at the very beginning? Something about a life of lies."
Red Alert looked at the spy. "You live a life of lies yourself, don't you? Pretending, pretending, until at last you wonder what's real, and what's not? Feel like your drowning in the character you made up, taking over your original personality and strangling you?"
Mirage sat a little uncomfortably. Red Alert was diving into emotions that no spy liked to think too deeply about. It was too dangerous. If a spy started thinking like that, the entire CPU could disintegrate from the pressure and strain.
Red Alert nodded, taking Mirages silence as a confirmation. "Exactly. The only problem is, what happens when you undertake it, knowing that it'll be for the rest of your life?"
Is Red Alert a sleeper agent? Mirage thought for one wild click, before his logic processor took over. " 'Rest of your life,'" he repeated, staring at Red Alert. "What do you mean by that?"
Red Alert stared at him for a few moments, before his gaze went back towards the ceiling. "You know, I met Inferno when I was rather young, just out of school. World was at my beck and call it felt like."
Mirage squashed his impatience at the sudden change, reminding himself that often explanations came through a long, rambling story. Some things would make no sense; others would click in his CPU. He simply had to wait.
"I met Inferno when he was glitching."
The cubes energon sloshed softly, the only sign of surprise. Red Alert cast Mirage a crafty, cunning look. "Oh, no scream of surprise? No wondering if my CPU is all right? Not that anyone thinks my CPU is right anyways."
An ugly laugh tore its way out of Red Alerts vocalizer. Mirage merely said, "Go on."
Red Alert stared at the energon in his nearly empty cube. After a moment he looked back up. "I met Inferno when he was glitching. He had found some hidden alleyway, and was just crouching there, trembling like mad. He couldn't even run, he was glitching that badly. I took him to the hospital, and began talking to him more and more often."
Red Alert stopped to drink deeply from his cube, as if trying to drown out the next memory. It didn't happen as he went on, words slurred. "Well, I fell in love with him. And I saw how horrible his life was. I rescued it twice you know. Mechs don't like the idea of those with glitches. Twice he had been beaten and left out to die. Each time I helped him recover."
A deep rattling intake was heard in the sudden silence of the room. "I decided to help him. So… I went to a doctor, had a couple of special upgrades. Unusual ones, but... they were important. I needed them."
Mirage had the sudden, sickly idea of what had happened next. Still, he sat silently, waiting to see what Red Alert would say. "The next time I saw Inferno about to go paranoid… I threw a glitch to end all glitches. I shrieked, screamed, ran around in circles, made my horns light up the crazy blue…"
Mirage was already shaking his head, trying to deny it. After all, Red Alert was glitchy, he knew what all he would dream up—"You don't believe me. Want me to prove it? I can turn my horns blue and other colors as well."
Without waiting for Mirages reply, a rippling color display was flashed across Red Alerts horns. For the grand finale, there was a small rainbow. Despite himself, Mirage believed Red Alert.
The one mech who everyone avoided for having a glitch, the one mech in whose paranoia was well renown, wasn't paranoid at all. The other mech, the one most pitied for having such a friend, had the glitch.
"It's a perfect setup, don't you agree? Nobody will notice a mech quietly panicking in a corner when you've got another running around and shrieking their head off about some of the most insane things and making a scene in general."
Red Alert drank off the rest of the cube. Mirage sat quietly, still simply listening to see if anything more would come after. "Firestar… she knows. And she doesn't approve. Even when I told her that if I didn't do it, then everyone would find out about Infernos secret. And out of all of them, I thought she'd understand. Inferno loves her after all. Not me. Never me."
Mirage finally spoke. "Why? Why would you do so much for Inferno? Surely he must be trying to stop you."
"He doesn't know."
The cube nearly dropped. "What?"
"Inferno doesn't know." Red Alert repeated calmly. He looked up, optics two cold chips of ice. "And Mirage, if you tell him, your body will never be found." His tone was completely serious.
A cold, foreboding tingle ran down the spies back. "Why shouldn't he know?" He challenged, attempting to see what Red Alert could see so clearly.
"Because he would feel guilty. Guilty enough to tell Ratchet about the fact that he has a glitch, even though being put under observation will just make it worse. Look at him Mirage!" Red Alerts tone softened to a soft plea of understanding. "Inferno hardly glitches now. I don't have to follow him pretending it's my glitch shrieking at me to make sure he doesn't glitch in front of a whole group of mechs."
Mirage stared at Red Alert. "Do you really intend on keeping this up until the day you die?"
Red Alert stared at him, and at last sighed dolefully. "No… Probably not. One day, I'll vanish like one of those human wraiths. Why do you ask?"
The spy shrugged, his optics turning towards the door. "What… what happened during the Negavator? I heard rumors-"
"Prime did a good job of covering it up. But to tell you the truth, I lost control of my deception and began believing it a little too deeply. Much too deeply. During that time I actually believed-"
Red Alert fell silent. "It was confusing."
Not to Mirages great surprise, he refused to say another word about it. Mirage wondered if Red Alert had given up on drinking his way to insensibility. Even after five of Ratchets famous cubes, Red Alert showed no sign of getting anywhere near the insensibility he was undoubtedly craving.
Mirage poured Red Alert energon from a different cube. "Ratchets brew is undoubtedly good, but this is the best for such things."
Red Alert accepted it without a murmur. Quickly and eagerly he downed it, and sighed as at last the welcome, blotting influence of high-grade washed over his mind into insensibility.
Ratchet looked up as Mirage dragged Red Alert in. "Oh good, I was wondering where he was."
Mirage simply nodded. Ratchet grunted as he deftly hauled the unconscious security director to a berth. "I keep telling him not to get drunk when Inferno's away."
"Do you know?" Mirage questioned idly.
Ratchets sharp gaze came up. "Know about what?"
Mirage shook his head, remembering Red Alerts cold optics. "Nothing."
The spy left, leaving behind a puzzled Ratchet. And a Puzzled Ratchet was not placated easily.
A/N: Leaving the twins in a spot of trouble, but I saw the bunny for this awhile back, and only just now finally got around to posting it.
Sorry about my odd posting, but life has now officially caught up with me with a bang.