Author's Note: I've had this story running around in my twisted mind for weeks now, so I decided to finally write it. The idea originally came from ckret2, thank you so much, and then it took on a life of its own. The rating may go up in later chapters.

Disclaimer: Ultra Rodimus, Jennifer Murdock, and her machine are all products of a seriously twisted mind. The other Autobots all belong to Hasbro. I take no credit for them.

Burning Skies

Chapter 1: Sinister Plots

Jennifer Murdock stood in the middle of her huge lab, watching as her cronies finished building her machine. A cruel smile touched her lips. Soon she would be ready.

When she was younger, she had been caught in the crossfire during a major battle between the Autobots and Decepticons. Her siblings had been killed. A stray shot had nearly hit Jennifer. It had barely missed her, but it had hit her boyfriend. He'd lasted for three days in hospital before succumbing to his injuries. Jennifer had sworn to avenge him. She hated all robotic life-forms. Her machine would give her the power to take her revenge on their entire race.

The machine had taken her years to design and perfect. It affected its victims on the molecular level, forcing their bodies to change form, into the form she chose for them. She intended to use it on any and every robot she could catch.

"We're almost finished, ma'am," one of her companions announced.

"Good." She smiled coldly. "I will have my vengeance!"

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"Are you still at it?"

Ultra Rodimus looked up in surprise. He hadn't heard him mate enter. Magnus was leaning on the wall, arms folded, watching him.

"What?"

"Still at work?"

The young Prime indicated the piles of datapads on his desk, stacked so high he had to stand to look over them. A good number lay in the "out" box, but that was barely a dent in the total number. Ultra Rodimus had been sitting at his desk, working non-stop, for nearly three days. The reports were still pouring in.

"Stupid question," Magnus agreed. ((You have to rest sometime,)) he told his mate in mindspeech. ((If you don't you'll burn yourself out. Even you can only take so much.))

Ultra Rodimus sighed. (I know, but I still have to get this done. I'm behind enough as it is. If I don't get this stuff done, eventually my desk will collapse under the weight.)

((You're exhausted. Come to bed.))

(But...)

((Do as he says,)) another voice chimed in, and Ultra Rodimus glared at the alien creature occupying his right forearm. Falcon was a skrill, and he'd attached himself to Ultra Rodimus during an unannounced trip through a dimensional breach. Primus had altered the skrill on the molecular level to allow it to survive attached to a robot.

(Falcon!)

((I have to live on your energy too, remember. You're running low. You need to rest.))

(Collaborator,) Ultra Rodimus muttered, but he obediently dropped the pad he'd been reading and rose from his chair, shutting off his computer. Magnus grinned and grabbed hold of his younger mate's long braid.

"So, what're you doing tomorrow?" Magnus asked.

"I have to go to the air force base to meet with the commanding officer."

"About what?"

"He didn't say."

Magnus made a thoughtful sound, but didn't ask anything else. He led his mate to their shared quarters and pushed him into the bedroom. Ultra Rodimus's exhaustion was beginning to show, and he staggered as he crossed the room. Sandstorm, Ultra Rodimus's friend and aide, or, as some others liked to tease, his servant, sprang forward to brace the tall youth. Magnus caught Ultra Rodimus's arm. Between the two of them, Magnus and Sandstorm got Ultra Rodimus over to the bed. Ultra Rodimus collapsed bonelessly onto it, asleep before his head hit the pillow.

Sandstorm rolled his eyes. Magnus shrugged and climbed onto the bed, curling around his mate. Ultra Rodimus didn't even twitch. Magnus sensed that he was deep in slumber. Falcon sent amusement and followed his host into sleep. Magnus wasn't far behind. Before he fell asleep, he privately hoped that there wouldn't be any huge problems on the horizon. They were overdue for a rest. But something deep inside him, something on the same level the humans called instinct, told him that the worst was yet to come.

To be continued...

This was short, I know. I'll do my best to make the chapters longer. Send me reviews and I'll get more chapters out to you.