|is it just me, or is he losing it?
Author: Domenic PM
Knock Out wasn't there. Again. Post-"Crossfire." AU. UPDATE: Chapter Five.Rated: Fiction T - English - Angst/Tragedy - Knock Out & Breakdown - Chapters: 5 - Words: 9,985 - Reviews: 23 - Favs: 20 - Follows: 33 - Updated: 06-15-12 - Published: 04-02-12 - id: 7983725
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
title: "is it just me, or is he losing it?"
Fandom: Transformers Prime
Summary: Knock Out wasn't there. Again.
A/N: Crossposting this from my tumblr account as fannishcodex. Spoilers for S2 EP. 6 "Crossfire." Yeah, gonna deal with this by driving Knock Out off the deep end. Sorry KO. You're gonna unconsciously regret that line you made about Megatron too (you're so gonna lose it worse than Megatron under the Unicron-Influence). I just believe Knock Out does care about Breakdown. A lot. Starting with a TVTropes theory that Breakdown's eye might've survived (*gross sobbing*), and was used for the one optic in MECH's Chimera prototype (who is probably gonna be Nemesis Prime).
Knock Out was excited.
And ridiculously grateful to Soundwave, but didn't dare voice it since it was part of their agreement to pretend this wasn't happening. But Soundwave had been helping the medic gather intel on MECH, a search that had, as the humans would say, struck gold: there was an indication that Breakdown's optic was still salvageable.
Knock Out was loathed to admit it, but he'd felt a gnawing guilt ever since his partner returned with a gaping hole in his head where his eye was supposed to be. Commander Starscream had grounded him, arguing it was better to keep the medic at base than in the field in this instance. Knock Out had reluctantly agreed; it didn't help that Starscream had ordered a group of Troopers to stop him should he try to leave, and how nervous the Troopers had looked at that prospect.
But Starsream was AWOL (and the Nemesis strangely quieter in his absence) and Knock Out would get to take real action to get rid of his guilt and fix his partner. Soundwave strongly implied through his general looming nature that Knock Out would not get to bring any of the Troopers for this off-the-record mission, not even the ones that liked Breakdown. Knock Out knew it was unlike him, but he quickly dismissed actually bringing Breakdown himself along. He convinced himself it was mostly because Breakdown was on a separate patrol mission currently and Knock Out just couldn't wait, he had to jump on the intel. But the guilt had really grown that slaggin' bad-to the point Knock Out felt he had to get his partner's optic by himself. The big lug deserved to have his eye returned to him; he needn't get it back himself, Knock Out would do it for the large grounder. Perhaps the loss of that ancient Prime's hammer had compounded his guilt; if they'd gotten it, a new optic could've been forged for Breakdown, replacing the veritably irreplaceable organ.
Knock Out groundbridged to the MECH location, eager. He put his comm on radio silence, to avoid MECH tracking anything back to him or even the Nemesis.
He hadn't been there for his partner, and he'd lost an eye. Knock Out could think of no better way to make up for it than to return it.
Knock Out had really jumped at the intel that Breakdown's optic survived. He had little idea of the context of that survival. He had just assumed it'd been archived, still kept safe to examine it intact, before finally being disassembled for deeper examination-that had been another factor that fed into Knock Out's typically impulsive nature, the thought that Breakdown's optic may be running out of time.
It had never entered Knock Out's processor that MECH would try to construct their own Transformer, and that they would use Breakdown's eye to light up one of its sockets.
While the dying and injured humans groaned, Knock Out shook himself from his shock and dashed to the Transformer prototype. He climbed it, for it was tall. Carefully examining it for best extraction, Knock Out's hand moved closer, claws sharpening-and he hesitated. Again. The mechanisms inside Breakdown's eye whirred, focusing on Knock Out. That prototype was definitely looking at him. It was aware. It was a new sentient life form-an equivalent to a sparkling, for Primus' sake, even if MECH had jumped ahead and tried to give it a mature body, clearly MECH had not wondered about a Transformer's life cycle-
Knock Out grit his dental plates. He could not forget why he was here. That was Breakdown's eye, not this new creature's! But this new creature had not asked for it, hadn't done anything, was probably the first possibility of new Transformer life since the loss of the Allspark...
The medic froze as the prototype's skull rattled with the sound, its stolen eye fixating on him.
"...Prime?" Knock Out whispered, his own eyes wide. What. The. Frag. Was Optimus Prime's voice doing coming out of this prototype? What the hell was MECH-?
The protoype's arm broke out of its restraint, snapping up with surprising speed to grab Knock Out's claw, the one held over Breakdown's eye.
Knock Out reacted instinctively. The hand in the prototype's grasp transformed into a whirring buzzsaw, the sound and motion of it distracting the creature. Then Knock Out ripped out Breakdown's eye with his other hand.
The sound MECH's Transformer made was spark-chilling, a roar warped by confusion and terror and rage. But it let go of Knock Out, and Knock Out transformed to vehicle mode before he hit the floor, Breakdown's eye secured in the trunk. He raced away from the prototype Transformer, from the sounds of its struggle to get completely free and its impotent screams. Screams that did sound a bit like the Prime's, if Knock Out focused. He stopped focusing so hard when it grew too unsettling.
Only the roll of Breakdown's eye in his trunk soothed Knock Out, reminded him of triumph. He couldn't wait to see the look on his partner's face when he presented him with his lost organ.
Once he groundbridged back, Knock Out transformed with Breakdown's optic in hand, the other hand reaching up with two fingers outstretched as he commed his partner.
"Breakdown, you'll never guess what I have," he said in a sing song voice, carefully marveling at his partner's optic. He'd have to work on it more before reinserting it into Breakdown, but it was still in remarkable shape.
"Um...S-Sir..." Knock Out turned to Trooper Shiv, still on groundbridge duty.
"Hmm, yes?" The medic said, paying half attention to Shiv and half to the comm, in case Breakdown pinged back right away before Shiv said anything more.
"L-Lord Megatron and S-S-Soundwave wish to speak with you on the bridge right away. I-it's every urg-urgent."
Knock Out blinked at Shiv's stutter. The Trooper hadn't shown hints of sounding this shaken since Starscream first disappeared; and right now he sounded worse.
The medic would have to ask about that later, he couldn't keep his superior officers waiting, probably not even to take the time to safely deposit Breakdown's eye in the infirmary. "All right then, thanks."
And he left.
"Knock Out, do you understand?" Megatron repeated gravely, considering the medic. His gaze lingered on the way his claws limply held Breakdown's optic. Probably the only thing left of him now.
Megatron's eyes traveled up and down Knock Out's frame. He could not remember seeing the medic look this still before, his face that empty. He could not recall him ever being so silent. Megatron was reminded of how much smaller he was than himself.
When the medic remained uncharacteristically silent, Megatron continued, "There was no life signal. There is no point in searching for him. I repeat, do you understand, Knock Out?"
The medic mutely nodded. Not what Megatron wanted, but it would do for now.
He dismissed Knock Out, who slowly left, still holding that optic.
Knock Out begged Soundwave for it.
"...keep up the good work...!"
Knock Out played the selection of his partner's voice Soundwave had given him over and over again while sitting alone in his infirmary, rolling around the dark optic in his hands.
He hadn't been there for his partner.