Really Bad Eggs
Bluestreak shielded his head with his arms as a shower of dust, rocks, rubble and Primus knew what else rained down on him from the mountain face behind him.
"Such senseless, needless violence," he muttered as he looked up to see a maroon colored Seeker flying away, preparing to turn for another run at him.
In a flash he raised his rifle and fired. A beam of gold energy rocketed towards the jet and found its mark. Thrust spiraled down, thick black smoke pouring from his afterburners. Bluestreak turned away and shook his head, a bit guilty for having shot a mech in the back.
"Well he shot at me first," he said to himself. "Besides, if I hadn't done it, he would have come at me again and this time it would have been bye-bye Blue."
"Bluestreak! When you've finished having that little conversation with your little, invisible friend, you might want to take note that there's a battle going on," Sunstreaker snapped. "So get your fragging act together and fight!"
The yellow mech ran on past him and Bluestreak sighed resignedly.
"But I don't WANT to fight," he said quietly as he turned back to the battle at hand. "All I want is peace."
"You'll be resting in pieces if you don't get your mind back from whatever little shiny-happy land it's gone off to. Get with it Blue!" Sideswipe yelled at him as he ran past the gunner and joined his brother.
"How did I get myself into this anyway?" he asked himself. "So they destroyed everyone and everything I ever loved and cared about, but is what I'm doing now the right thing?"
"BLUESTREAK!" the brothers yelled as they leapt clear of a hit by Thundercracker.
"Oh alright," he said and fired at the Seeker.
The bolt clipped the blue and white jet on the left wing. It didn't incapacitate the Decepticon, but it slowed him down enough for the twins to get back to their feet and engage him.
Prowl watched Bluestreak from a few feet away and shook his head. He was going to have to have a long talk with the young gunner about keeping his mind on the battle. Of course with Bluestreak's attention span, a long talk with him would be a stretch, but then Prowl always did love a challenge; and lecturing his Datsun counterpart was one of the best challenges a tactician could have.
A shot from Buzzsaw, that missed him and blew a hole in the ground near his left foot instead, drew his attention back to the battle.
"I'm becoming as bad as Bluestreak," he said to himself, and then his face took on a bemused look when he realized, "Primus! I'm even talking to myself like he does." He shook his head as Buzzsaw blew a hole near his right foot. "Oh for Primus' sake, THIS is how you shoot!" He fired his acid-pellets at the Decepticon and nailed it right in the face. "Now buzz off."
Prowl didn't bother to look as it crashed to the ground. Instead, he sensed a shift in the air and saw Skywarp teleport himself out. He did a quick scan of the battlefield, trying to pinpoint the exact spot where the Seeker would reappear.
There were two Autobots fighting on the ground for every Decepticon in the air. Ironhide and Jazz had their hands full with Starscream, the twins were after Thundercracker. The only singular Autobots were Optimus Prime, himself and Bluestreak.
Optimus and Megatron were, as usual, trading laser fire and colorful insults. The most intriguing one Prowl had overheard so far was when Megatron offered Prime the chance to surrender, Prime had told him he could stick his offer where the sun didn't shine. Without a doubt an Earth insult Prime had picked up; and he made a mental note to ask Spike about its exact meaning.
Getting back to the matter at hand however, Prowl was able to conclude that Skywarp would not go after Prime. He also deduced that the Seeker was not THAT stupid to come after Prowl himself. His entire train of thought completed in a matter of astro-seconds, Prowl ran towards the only other singular Autobot just as Skywarp appeared behind the gunner.
"Bluestreak! Behind you!" Prowl shouted.
A missile burst behind him, lifted him off his feet and flung him into Bluestreak. The two of them tumbled into Skywarp just as he began to teleport out again. There was a quick shimmer and the three of them vanished.
When Prowl came to his senses once again, the first thing he felt was Bluestreak's chevron sticking into his mid-section. The next thing he heard was Skywarp's voice.
"Ugh! Disgusting Autobots! Get off me!" he yelled.
Prowl quickly peeled himself off the pile of robots and then helped Bluestreak up.
"Who are you calling disgusting, you disgusting 'Con?" Bluestreak asked.
Skywarp looked at the hand Prowl was holding out.
"What are you doing?"
"I'm offering to help you up," Prowl replied.
"I don't need help from Autobots."
"Suit yourself." Prowl shrugged and turned away to scan the surroundings.
Skywarp stood up by himself and looked around. In front of him stretched a vast blue ocean. He was standing on pure white sand, and all around him were palm trees of every shape and size.
"What happened?" Bluestreak asked. "Where are we?"
"Do a self-diagnostic scan and first see if you're alright. Then we'll figure out everything else," Prowl replied. He looked at the Seeker. "You too Skywarp."
"I take orders only from Megatron," he said.
Prowl looked to the heavens, begging, pleading with the higher deities for more patience.
"Well Megatron aunt here is he?" Bluestreak asked. "So since Prowl's the highest ranking of the three of us, we'll be taking orders from him."
Prowl was mildly surprised to hear this from Bluestreak, but his face remained bland. Skywarp however was far from amused.
"No miserable Autobot is going to tell me what to do."
He trained his arm-mounted lasers at the two of them. Prowl and Bluestreak looked at each other with amused expressions. Skywarp eyed them.
"What?" he asked.
"Oh nothing, just figured out that you ARE as stupid as we thought," said Bluestreak.
"What he means," said Prowl. "Is that if you had done a self-diagnostic like I told you to, you would have realized that your right laser is completely out of power and the one on your left arm has power in it for one little shot." He crossed his arms over his chest. "You could shoot one of us and hope for the best that it seriously wounds us. Out here, in the middle of who knows where, a serious wound could be fatal. But then you'd have to contend with whichever one of us is still alive, and both of us have enough power in our weapons to kill at least four Decepticons between us."
"Is he always this long-winded?" Skywarp asked Bluestreak.
"No," Bluestreak replied. "On a good day he goes on even longer. Then again, he's long-winded on a bad day too, so yeah."
"Well is it a yes or a no? You Autobots are so weird."
"Said the pot to the kettle," Prowl muttered, and both Bluestreak and Skywarp glanced at him curiously. "And I haven't finished," he said aloud. "In a worst case scenario, you could fire and miss us both. Either way, you'll only wind up making one or both of us angry enough to kill you."
"Not if I shoot you and teleport out."
"You can't. The reason we are all here on this island is because when we crashed into you, something in your teleportation mechanism was damaged."
"How do you know?"
"You left me no choice but to run a diagnostic of you."
"You SCANNED me?! What do you Autobots do with each other when you're not fighting us? Primus! I feel so violated!"
Bluestreak snorted. "Violated? You sound like one of those human females in the soap operas after they go out with some guy and…"
"Bluestreak!" Prowl interrupted. "Not now."
But Skywarp was insulted. He narrowed his optics at the gunner. "Did you just compare me to one of those flesh-creatures?"
"Yeah," Bluestreak replied, smirking. "Cos y'know... with that chest of yours and everything…definitely like one of those females in that lifeguard show."
"Bluestreak please – what lifeguard show?" Prowl asked.
"You don't know? Sideswipe downloaded the first season into Teletran's database. We watch it all the time."
Prowl shut his optics and took a deep breath. "Did I not forbid that little, red miscreant to download any manner of personal entertainment into Teletran One?"
"Well," Bluestreak squirmed. "You did, but see whereas it was Sideswipe's idea to download them, Sunstreaker and I did the actual downloading."
Prowl frowned and Bluestreak could have sworn he saw little wisps of steam coming out of the tactician's audio receptors.
"We're in trouble aren't we?" he asked.
"I don't know Bluestreak. What usually happens when you get involved in one of Sideswipe's hare-brained schemes?"
"Uh... we get into trouble… then we get caught, and usually it's because of me blabbering something that gets us caught and then you… oh…" Realization dawned on Bluestreak. "Erm… we're sorry?" he said sheepishly.
"Excuse me!" Skywarp nearly shouted, a bit miffed at being ignored. "Can we get back to the subject of that little twerp over there insulting me?" He pointed at Bluestreak. "Slaggit! You Autobots ARE strange."
"No," said Prowl. "Now listen: we're all running low on fuel too. We don't know where or how far the nearest known land is." He turned to Skywarp. "This is where you come in. you can either work with us so that all three of us can get out of here in functioning condition, or we can all rust out here together. You'll be stuck with us whatever choice you make; and I'm sure your sense of self-preservation outweighs your sense of loyalty."
Skywarp's lips all but curled into a disgusted snarl. "What do you want me to do?"
"Transform and fly up, then circle around the island to see how big it is, and if you can spot any inhabited land masses nearby. Don't even think of trying to fly off. We'll either be forced to shoot you down or you'll run out of fuel and crash into the sea."
Muttering a curse at the two of them and at all Autobots in general, Skywarp transformed and took off.
"You don't trust him do you?" Bluestreak asked.
"No further than I can throw a Dinobot," Prowl replied. "But I doubt he'll try anything."
"Oh yeah, how'd you figure that?"
"As much as he likes to delude himself, Skywarp is not the smartest Decepticon in their ranks. But he does know that I am the only one capable of figuring out how to get us back home again. He also knows that if he harms you in any way, I will refuse to help him or at the very least kill him. Knowing him, he'd probably think I'd kill him."
"Only if he killed you. We're Autobots Bluestreak, you know we don't kill willingly, but Decepticon programming dictates that they kill first."
"Do you know how to get us home?"
"Well usually when Skywarp teleports, he creates a small rift in the fabric of space and time that he is able to slip through into his required location. However today, when we slammed into him, the teleportation field expanded to include both of us as well, creating a bigger rip in the space-time continuum. At the same time, we must have jolted Skywarp's thought process. Therefore, with no destination in mind, we were simply dumped in the first random location available."
"Uh… thanks Perceptor… I think." Bluestreak sat down on the sand, stretched his legs out towards the waves and leaned back on his palms. "So what you're saying is that we could have easily been stranded in the middle of the desert or at the top of a mountain."
"Or dropped into a vat of acid, a garbage compactor or a black hole."
"You make me feel so much better Gears… or Huffer even. But you didn't answer my first question. How do we get back home?"
"Our best shot would have been to get Skywarp to teleport us back, but his teleportation circuits are damaged and only Soundwave or the Constructicons would know how to repair something like that; and maybe Perceptor."
"You don't know how to get us back do you?"
"Not a clue. Our best hope is to put out a distress signal and hope the Autobots pick up on it."
At that moment Skywarp landed and transformed.
"The island's uninhabited. Beyond these palm trees is nothing but jungle. If we want to be found I suggest we remain on this beach. There isn't another land mass for miles."
Bluestreak shook his head. "We're gonna die." He got to his feet and faced the other Transformers. "Face it! We're gonna die. We're gonna run out of fuel and then we're gonna rust out."
"We're not going to die", Prowl said. "The Autobots will find us."
"Not if the Decepticons find us first," said Skywarp.
"Great! That makes me feel so much better. If we don't turn into rusting metal shells, we'll get our tailpipes toasted by the 'Cons!"
"It's my job to make Autobots miserable. Can I help it if I'm good at what I do?"
Bluestreak pulled out his weapon and aimed it point-blank at Skywarp's face. "Well I'm good at what I do too… and at this close range I don't miss."
"You're an Autobot, you wouldn't shoot another sentient being in cold blood, especially since you have no incentive."
"No incentive? Then what do you call the destruction of my city and everyone I ever loved?"
"But I didn't do it! I wasn't even there!" Skywarp looked at Prowl nervously, but the tactician showed no emotion.
"Doesn't matter, you're still a Decepticon. And it's my job to shoot Decepticons. I can't help it if I'm good at what I do can I?"
"You're not going to let him do this are you?" the black and purple Seeker asked Prowl.
"Well he's right. Autobots are supposed to shoot Decepticons. And lets face it, if all of you hadn't started terrorizing that neighborhood, thus making them summon us, we wouldn't be here in the first place."
Skywarp audibly gulped. If it was Prowl or Ironhide pointing the gun at him, he wouldn't have worried so much. But Bluestreak was unstable. The only ones worse than him were the Autobot twins. His optics returned to the barrel of the rifle…
Bluestreak shook his head, lowered the gun and turned away. "Not today. Not like this." He began to walk down the beach.
"I knew all you Autobots were the same," Skywarp called after him, his bravado returning now that there was no longer a gun pointed at his face. "No wonder all of you die so easily."
Bluestreak whipped around and snapped off a shot. Even Prowl was caught off-guard by his quickness and flinched. The bolt missed Skywarp's head by mere millimeters and hit the sand behind him. The Seeker hit the ground and covered his head. Bluestreak subspaced the weapon and continued walking. Skywarp peeped out and looked at Prowl.
"He almost killed me!"
"But he didn't. If he wanted to, he would have aimed for your head and not the sand behind you. I suggest you learn the meaning of the human saying: 'let sleeping dragons lie'."
Skywarp sat down on the sand, much the same way Bluestreak had done, and pouted. Prowl ignored him and watched the gunner instead. Bluestreak kept pacing. Prowl sensed a sudden shift in the sand and was about to call to him when the gunner suddenly disappeared through the sand with a yell.
"Bluestreak!" Prowl shouted and ran to where he'd last seen him.
Skywarp hesitated and then after a moment got up and followed the Autobot. He found Prowl kneeling and looking into a fairly big hole. He knelt down as well and peered over the edge. Bluestreak was sitting on the floor amongst the broken, wooden pieces of what was once a trap door.
"Bluestreak! Are you alright?" Prowl called down.
"Uh… yeah I guess so," he replied.
"What's down there?" Skywarp asked. "I cant see quite well, but I can tell its not empty."
Bluestreak stood up and dusted himself off, then looked around. "There's lots of dusty shelves as far as I can see, which is not that far. Its like a basement down here, ten paces by ten paces, and each wall is lined with shelves of bottles."
"What's in the bottles?" Prowl asked.
"I don't know, they're too dusty to tell."
"Well open one up and see," said Skywarp.
Bluestreak flung a dirty look at him, but pulled out one of the bottles all the same, raising a cloud of dust, some of which went up his olfactory making him sneeze.
"I cant tell what it is down here, its too dark and there's too much dust going up my olfactory," he said.
"Bring it up here and we'll have a look," said Prowl.
Bluestreak passed the bottle up to Prowl, then tried to haul himself out. To his surprise Skywarp helped him the last of the way by grabbing his door wings and pulling him out. Bluestreak didn't trust the Seeker, but did thank him none the less.
Prowl meanwhile was studying the bottle. It was made out of black glass so he had no choice but to pull out the cork. Then he sniffed the contents and immediately his face soured.
"Whatever is in this, it smells vile," he said.
"Give me that," Bluestreak said. Prowl handed him the bottle and he took a whiff. "Smells familiar." He put it to his mouth and drank a sip. Then another, and another. In three minutes he had finished half the bottle.
Prowl and Skywarp stared at him in shock, expecting him to keel over and die at any moment. Instead Bluestreak simply stared back at them, optic ridges raised in the universal "What?" expression.
"Its only alcohol," he said at last. "Y'know, the stuff humans drink which, like high-grade energon, makes them go all wacky if they have too much of it, and then they start acting like complete idiots. The term they use is 'drunk' I believe. From the way you acted Prowl I should have guessed. You never did like the stuff."
"And I never will, so don't bring that thing near me. Foul stuff, burns up way too fast to be of any use as fuel."
"That's because you burn most of it up with your thought processors. If you don't do anything after you drink it, you'd learn to enjoy it."
"And if I don't do anything, nothing around Autobot Headquarters would ever get done, and then we would simply fall apart."
"Maybe you should drink it then," said Skywarp.
Prowl rounded on him. "Do NOT test the boundaries of my patience Skywarp. I may not be as high-strung as Bluestreak, but that also means that if I wanted to shoot you dead, you'd be nothing but a smoking carcass right now, because unlike him, if I want to kill someone, I don't hesitate."
Bluestreak held out the bottle to the Seeker. "Drink?"
"No! Jet engines are very delicate systems, you cant just put any type of fuel into them, unlike you primitive land-crawling Autobots. Primus! I don't know which of you is worse: the cratered gunner or the psychopath strategist."
"Do you think its wise to be insulting us when you're the one with non-functioning weapons and both of us still have loaded rifles? But then again, Decepticons are not well-known for their wisdom," Bluestreak said.
"There is one good use for that alcohol however," Prowl said, cutting off a reply from Skywarp. "It is a highly flammable substance. We could douse some wood with it, set it alight and make a signal."
"Yes! And then maybe Decepticon Headquarters will pick up on it," Skywarp said, a little too gleefully.
"You do understand the meaning of the term 'deathwish' don't you?" Prowl asked.
"Well, whatever we're going to do, we'd better do it fast because its going to be dark soon," said Bluestreak, pointing at the faint crescent moon.
Night passed and morning came again; and each robot was even more irritable than they had been the day before. Part of the reason for this was because neither faction wanted to be off-guard in the presence of the other. Thus, lack of rest and recharge led to very frayed circuits, tired optics and aching cranial units. Their signal had gone out early that morning and now only a thin spiral of smoke wafted into the air.
Skywarp sat apart from the two Autobots, running his hands along his wings. They were coated in a fine, sticky layer of salt water. His whole body was, to be exact, but he prided himself on his wings the most. He only hoped that the combination of sun and salt water didn't bleach out his beautiful black gloss.
Prowl had been sitting on the sand and gazing out to sea ever since they got their signal going. Every time he moved he could hear some joint or another squeak. His door-wings drooped and his chevron glowed a dull red in the sunlight. He hoped to Primus someone would find them soon before his brain went numb with idleness.
Bluestreak, who had been lying on the sand ever since the moon turned west, now sat up. The sand fell off his body in layers. Of the three of them, he was the only one who looked somewhat content. It was probably because being stranded there meant he didn't have to partake in all the mayhem and violence that was the war.
But now though, he was gazing intently out to sea. Prowl and Skywarp watched him.
"What are you looking at?" Prowl finally asked.
"There's a ship out there," he said simply.
"A ship!? What type of ship?" Skywarp asked. "Does it look like a Decepticon model?"
Bluestreak just smirked.
"Is it an Autobot rescue shuttle?" Prowl asked.
"Its an old-fashioned human ship and its anchored quite far out at sea. You could probably see it if you stand up. And there's a human in a row-boat coming towards this island. I think your signal worked Prowl."
The 3 Transformers all stood up together and instinctively moved a few steps back from the shoreline. The bottom of the wooden boat scraped the sand and the human – a man – jumped out. After dragging his boat a few more inches out of the water, he turned and stared up at the three. They in turn stared down at him because, quite frankly, he was the strangest human they had ever seen since coming to Earth.
He had dark-rimmed eyes; long, unkempt hair – part of it braided, part of it hanging loose – held back by a dirty coral scarf around his head; and rather flamboyant clothes. He swayed a bit where he stood and raised an eyebrow.
"Well," he said. "I've seen many strange things in my life, but this is the first time I've seen anything like the likes of you. So answer me two questions gentlemen: what might you all be? And why in good heaven's name have you burnt up all the rum?!"
Bluestreak snapped his fingers. "So THAT'S what it was."
Skywarp aimed his only working arm-mounted laser point-blank at the human's face.
"You watch your mouth flesh-creature. We will ask the questions around here," he said.
The man simply looked at the weapon, then at Skywarp, and then at something to the right of Skywarp's head. He heard the familiar hum of an Autobot weapon. Prowl had his own rifle pointed at Skywarp's temple.
"Just give me a reason," he said. "Just one. That's all I need to reduce the number of the Decepticon ranks. Don't make me fire this gun."
Skywarp growled something in Cybertronian and lowered his weapon, then stood a few steps away. Prowl knelt down and then proceeded to explain the basics of Transformers, the Autobot/Decepticon war and how they wound up on the island.
"I find it curious though, that my chronometer keeps telling me that this is the 18th century," he said.
"That's because this is the 18th century mate," the human replied.
This bit of information nearly crashed Prowl's CPU and he was stunned into silence. The human's eyes widened at the look on Prowl's face.
"Was it something I said?" he asked.
"Nah don't worry about him," said Bluestreak, as he knelt down too. "He'll recover soon. You just hit him with a sudden information overload. The 18th century… wow."
"What's your name boy?" The man glanced at Prowl and Skywarp. "And your crew, who are they?"
"Oh they're not my crew. Prowl's actually more superior than I am, and Skywarp… eh, he's the enemy. I'm just a gunner. My name's Bluestreak, but you can call me Blue."
"Well Blue, if I were you mate, I'd ask for a promotion because so far, of the three of you, you're the only one who hasn't tried to kill a total stranger nor gone mute on him."
Bluestreak chuckled. "What's your name?" he asked.
The man took half a step back. "My name… is Captain Jack Sparrow – the most fearsome pirate in the Caribbean."
"Oh! I know you!" Bluestreak exclaimed.
This surprised Jack. "You do? That's interesting; because in all my adventures, I don't ever recall meeting a 15 foot tall, metal… whatever you are… before."
"No no! I don't mean you personally. I mean I've seen pictures and read about people like you in some books back at the Ark. Pirates and all that. You would raid, pillage and plunder unsuspecting ships and small coastal settlements for whatever loot you could find. They called it uh… tea… tear…"
"Yeah! That's the word. Treasure. Pirates love treasure."
"They sound like Decepticons if you ask me," said Skywarp. "With all the raiding and plundering."
"Well no one asked you," Bluestreak replied. "So just be quiet". He turned back to Jack. "Are you like that? I mean evil – like that?"
"That depends on how you define evil mate. My crew and I, yes we pillage when we can, but all we're trying to do is earn a living. We don't go after poor folks – no mate. We sack all them high-tone and fancy people and spend their money in poor little places, like Tortuga for instance. Now do you define that as evil?"
"I guess not. But have you ever killed anyone?"
Bluestreak squirmed. "Well… yes… but only in self-defense. If I didn't they would have killed me."
"Then I think we understand one another."
"Can… can you help us get back to our time?" Prowl asked, having finally come to terms with the information.
"It speaks at last!" Jack exclaimed, clapping his hands. "Please, do us a favor and try not to go all mute again like that savvy? I don't want to have to train another parrot to speak for you."
"I don't need one," Prowl replied. "I have Bluestreak."
"Hey!" Bluestreak didn't know whether to feel complimented or insulted.
"Well he's certainly done a better job of conversing than either of you," Jack said.
"Excuse me!" Skywarp strode up. "While this has all been very charming, we still haven't solved our problem of getting back to the future. Now if someone doesn't start providing answers, I'm going to get ugly!"
"And you think you're not ugly enough as it is, is that what you're saying?" asked Jack. "Well then, you need to get yourself a mirror mate."
Prowl disguised a giggle as a cough, but Bluestreak outright laughed. Skywarp however was far from amused. He aimed his lasers at them.
"I don't care if this gets me killed, but if I go I take one of you with me."
"Put the gun away lad, you don't want to be doing that," said Jack.
"Skywarp, don't be stupid," said Prowl. "You don't have enough power in your laser to kill either of us."
"Maybe not both of you, but its enough to do him in." He pointed the laser squarely at Jack again. "And if he goes, your only chance of getting back goes with him."
Bluestreak curled and uncurled his fingers and carefully summoned his rifle. Prowl noticed and kept Skywarp's attention on himself.
"You don't even know if that shot will kill him. And what if he moves and you miss?"
"I'm willing to take that chance. I have nothing to lose. Now say goodbye flesh-creature."
The tip of the laser glowed pink. At the same moment, a gold beam zipped past Jack's head and hit the Seeker's arm before he could fire. Skywarp fell back clutching his arm.
"Argh! Primus!" he yelled. "That HURT!"
"Well I warned you mate," Jack said.
"Shut up!" Skywarp spat out.
"He warned you too." Jack pointed at Prowl.
Skywarp resorted to cussing in Cybertronian. Prowl and Bluestreak both cringed at the colorful terminology he was using.
"Skywarp please," said Prowl at last. "There is no need for such offensive words."
"Why? Are you too good an Autobot for them?"
"No. On the contrary I used to use a good many of them myself at one time, until I met Sideswipe and Sunstreaker and heard them use them on an almost hourly basis. And anyway, please act your age. It was just a shot on the arm for goodness sake."
"Speak for yourself," Skywarp growled.
"Y'know, I'm sure the other Decepticons would like to hear about his antics once we get back to our time," said Bluestreak. "Such a display of weakness and Megatron may just shoot him for us."
The Seeker looked at them in horror. "You wouldn't."
Prowl and Bluestreak just looked back at him.
"If I may gentlemen," Jack interjected. "Might I enquire as to just what you need my help with?"
"You uh… wouldn't happen to have any idea as to how we could get back to our own time would you?" Bluestreak asked.
"Or know anyone who could fix this?" Skywarp opened his chest panel and slowly drew out his damaged teleportation console.
Jack took a closer look at it.
"Nope, not a clue mate, I'm sorry."
The three Transformers sighed dejectedly.
"Although," he went on. "I do have a friend o' mine who might have some inkling of an idea. Blacksmith. Name's Will Turner. Bloke can fix anything as long as its metal. Good with a sword too."
The three Transformers looked up.
"Well then take me to him," Skywarp said and transformed to his jet mode. He opened the cockpit hatch. "Get in. I'll fly us there in no time."
Jack took a step back and the Autobots immediately trained their weapons on the Seeker.
"Oh not again," Skywarp groaned. "Didn't we already go though this about six times now? You Autobots have some serious security complexes."
"Seven times," Prowl corrected. "And it comes with being around Red Alert long enough. Just because we haven't killed you doesn't mean we trust you either."
"Yeah, you're not flying him anywhere," Bluestreak insisted. "For all we know, you'll get repaired and leave us stranded."
"Cant blame a 'Con for trying. Primus! You Autobots think you're so smart don't you?"
"Naw, we just think you're really dumb that's all. Even the Insecticons have some measure of intelligence."
"Hey now, no need to be THAT insulting."
"We're all going", said Prowl. "And Jack will be riding inside one of us."
"Whoa now! Hang on just one minute," Jack said, as he took a few more steps back, moving towards his rowboat. "We don't even know if young Turner will be there when we arrive."
"Does he have a ship or any other means of fast transportation?" Prowl asked.
He knew the human was trying to escape back to his waiting ship and he knew that there wasn't a bolt's chance in acid that the rowboat could outrun the three of them. But he also knew that the ship probably had a few cannons on board that were capable of doing serious damage to the Transformer anatomy if they thought their captain was in danger.
"No he doesn't," Jack said.
"Then he'll be there. Lets GO!" said Skywarp.
"Sorry mates. If you want to find Will Turner, you're going to have to do it alone, savvy? I, on the other hand, have ships to plunder and a treasure to find. It was nice meeting you folks and I wish you well."
He turned and began to saunter back to his boat. The sand beside him burst in a shower of fine grains. Jack froze and slowly turned around, a guilty, deer-in-the-headlights look on his face. He saw Bluestreak subspace his weapon, an equally guilty deer-in-the-headlights look on his face.
"Sorry about that," the gunner said. "But we really need to find your friend."
"Listen mates, you don't understand," Jack replied as he walked back to them. "If I go back to Port Royal there's a certain Commodore Norrington waiting for me with a noose that has my name on it. If he so much as sees anything that looks like the Black Pearl," he pointed to his ship. "He'll be more than happy to reduce it to firewood. So you see mates, I cant help you. Its impossible."
"Impossible?" Prowl asked. "Not at all. If one understands the problem, one can then formulate a solution. In your case Captain, the problem lies in your pirating ways which have undoubtedly put you in trouble with the law. The solution therein lies in you giving up your unlawful ways."
Jack stared at him. "Have you been drinking all that rum in the cellar down there, or are you just plain mad? Whether I surrender or not they're going to kill me anyway."
"Yeah," Bluestreak agreed. "Besides, pirates are not all unruly rogues. They do honor their own rules and such."
"What rules?" asked Skywarp. "Since when did pirates have rules?"
"Since the time of Henry Morgan," replied Bluestreak. "He set down the pirates code".
"Actually, the code is more what you might call guidelines than actual rules," Jack said.
"I understand your predicament Jack," said Prowl. "However I was merely using it as an example. It is your life after all and what you intend to do with it does not concern me. What does concern me is our problem and how the three of us are supposed to get back to our own time."
"Ah, I see. My apologies." The pirate executed a mock bow.
Prowl sighed. "If I may continue."
Bluestreak and Skywarp, who had transformed back, both groaned. Jack held up his hand, ran to the cellar and emerged with a bottle of rum. He pulled out the cork and took a long draught.
"Now, by all means, continue," he said.
Prowl rolled his optics. "Our problem is that we need someone to repair Skywarp's teleportation console. That possible someone lives in a place you cannot get to because if you show your face there, you will be shot."
"So what's your solution?" Jack asked as he took another drink.
"I am getting to that. I only hope you can remain sober long enough to hear it."
Jack looked at Bluestreak. "Is he always like this?" he asked.
"You don't want him to answer that," Skywarp said. "Trust me, they'll never admit it, but they're equally long-winded when they start talking."
Prowl and Bluestreak both frowned at him.
"Well its true!" Skywarp protested. "They are. That idiot tactician over there just drones on about strategy after strategy, while the other one constantly babbles nothing but garbage."
"You walk a fine line between bravery and stupidity mate," said Jack. "You might want to watch where you're going… now about that solution?"
The third day since the three had been stranded dawned gloomy and windy. Jack had spent the night back on his ship informing his crew of the latest situation, while the Transformers remained on the beach. For some reason, after Prowl had revealed his solution, Jack had become quite perversely happy. Something to do with the fact that it would scare the living daylights out of his friend.
Bluestreak spent the night bringing up all the bottles of rum from the cellar while Prowl and Skywarp lashed together a light raft. Finally, as the sun shone bleakly through the heavy clouds and the wind picked up, Jack's boat scraped the sand of the island.
"Well mates," he said as he came ashore. "You're lucky my crew is about as mad as I am or they would've made me walk the plank for coming to them with some crazy tale of giant, metallic… whatever you are. They're going to anchor here and wait for us to return."
"Alright then, lets get loaded," said Bluestreak. "Prowl transform."
With a reluctant sigh Prowl transformed to his patrol car mode and opened a fuel hatch. "Fill me up if you must."
Bluestreak poured in bottle after bottle of alcohol till Prowl's fuel tank nearly overflowed. Then Bluestreak himself transformed and instructed Jack to do the same.
"If this doesn't work, it will be an absolute waste of fine rum," he lamented as he emptied another bottle into Bluestreak's tank. "It would have sold for a pretty sum over in Tortuga."
"Well if there's any left over at the end of this crazy escapade its all yours," Prowl said as Skywarp attached the raft to his bumper with a length of rope.
Once Bluestreak's fuel tank was also filled to capacity, Jack loaded all the other spare bottles onto the floor and back seat of Prowl's auto-mode.
"I don't see why I have to carry all these bottles around. If any of them leaks or breaks I'm going to be smelling of rum for weeks. And the last thing I want is to roll up to the Ark reeking of alcohol. Jazz would never let me live it down."
"Well its better you than me. You know how I drive," said Bluestreak. "I'll probably break 'em before we're even a mile out and then what would we use for fuel if we run out? You're more careful with these things."
Prowl muttered something dark and Bluestreak giggled.
"I think we're ready," Jack said. "Are you sure the two of you can travel on water?"
"Quite sure," said Prowl
"Climb aboard," said Bluestreak.
Jack obliged and clambered onto the Datsun's roof. The two cars rolled to the water's edge till the waves lapped at their tires.
"Activate hydro-foils," Prowl said.
Thin strips of a light metal, resembling water-skis dropped under each tire, and the Autobots we able to easily cruise over the water. Skywarp waded to the raft, climbed onto it and transformed to his jet mode. They needed him to conserve enough fuel for when they got to their destination, so it was agreed Prowl would tow him on the raft. Skywarp was grateful none of the other Decepticons could see him like this… For a while they traveled in silence.
"It intrigues me Jack, that you seemed to take our presence here quite well," said Prowl. "I doubt you see beings like us everyday, yet you took it all in stride."
"Like I said mate, I've seen a lot of strange things in my life. In my last encounter for instance, Will Turner and I went up against cursed pirates who turned into undead skeletons in the moonlight."
"Wow," said Bluestreak. "That must have been something else."
"Yes it was. Though now that you mention it, I don't recall ever finding out what happened to that annoying little monkey."
"There was a monkey?"
"Hell yeah mate. Stupid blighter had the gall to name the thing Jack."
Bluestreak laughed out loud and rocked ever so slightly on his skis.
"Hey, can we speed up a bit?" Skywarp called from behind. "I'm getting cold draughts up my afterburners."
"Aww that's too bad Skywarp, would you like a blanket to cover up?" Bluestreak asked. "Geez, what kind of a 'Con are you? Does Megatron even know you're like this?"
"Megatron," the Seeker snorted. "Megatron doesn't know a thing about any of us except for our strengths and weaknesses in battle. It's the same with all Decepticons. No strong emotional attachments – no having to worry about anyone else on the battlefield. You just look out for yourself. Another guy gets shot down, that's his fault – he was being careless. You're not gonna help him unless ordered to. That's why you sentimental Autobots always go back with more hurt than necessary. You're too busy looking out for each other than worrying about yourselves."
"Its cos we care about each other that's why," Bluestreak said.
"Caring's for wimps. Its not really my fault that we're out here, its both of yours. If your buddy over there didn't care so much about you, he wouldn't have run over to protect you because you weren't paying attention. I would have simply shot you in the back and been done with it."
Jack felt Bluestreak rev his engine a little too hard. Prowl heard it too and knew the gunner was bristling with anger, mainly because he'd just been told that it was foolish to care for a fellow Autobot. Prowl hated himself for it, but he knew Skywarp was partly right. Too much sentimental connection could indeed cloud one's judgment. However, part of his mind reasoned, no care at all would simply make them cold, unfeeling machines who simply threw away lives as cannon fodder.
Bluestreak was angry, but he felt a tinge of sadness for the Decepticon too. Life had to be quite lonely for him when not fighting or planning out battle strategies. Bluestreak on the other hand viewed the Autobots as more than just fellow soldiers. They were his friends.
He knew Blaster's favorite songs, Jazz's favorite movies. He knew just the right joke to make Prowl crack that rare smile of his, and what lines to say if he wanted a rise out of Ratchet. He knew what sports Ironhide liked to watch and what Hound's favorite hobby was. Infact, he couldn't imagine himself not knowing these things.
It helped him concentrate more during a battle because he knew if he screwed up, someone else would take the fall and he'd break down in guilt. Skywarp was wrong. Not caring meant people died.
Jack, meanwhile, had wisely stayed quiet while the robots debated, softly singing a song to himself. Bluestreak turned his audio scanners up in time to catch a line.
"We're devils, we're black sheep; we're really bad eggs. Drink up me hearties yo ho."
"What's that song you're singing?" he asked, not wanting to get into another verbal sparring match with Skywarp.
"Huh? What? Oh THAT song," said Jack. "It's a pirate song I learnt on my last voyage. Liked it so much I taught it to my whole crew and now we sing it all the time."
"Can you teach me?"
"Bluestreak I don't think that's such a good idea," said Prowl. He now remembered a few traits about pirates too, and one that came to mind was their use of foul language. He already had the twins in that category, he didn't need Bluestreak joining them.
"Why not?" Bluestreak asked. "Its not like I've got anything better to do."
"Because once you learn it, you'll end up teaching it to everyone back at the Ark, and then there will be the constant singing of it which will be bound to drive me mad, and thus render me incapable of carrying out any work."
"But we drive you mad anyways, and its never stopped you before."
"Besides mate, it's a clean song, I promise," Jack cut in. "You don't think I'd teach the kid anything vulgar now would you?"
Jack took Prowl's silence to mean 'yes' on both fronts and smiled.
"Alright Blue, pay attention now. It goes a little like this…"
It took Bluestreak almost no time at all to commit the lyrics to his memory banks and soon he and Jack were singing out loud, much to the chagrin of Prowl and Skywarp.
"Yo ho! Yo ho! A pirate's life for me!" Bluestreak sang. "I love this song! I've got to teach it to the other Autobots. Jazz is gonna love it!"
Prowl groaned in defeat. He could only hope now that something would come up that would make his Datsun counterpart forget the song. He could hear Skywarp moan behind him as Jack and Bluestreak launched into another verse – Jack dancing and twirling on Bluestreak's roof and hood. Skywarp muttered something about crazy humans and equally mad Autobots and switched off his audio receptors.
As the songs and the day drew on, Prowl too eventually turned off his own audio receptors. Finally, as the sun went down and a few stars appeared between the clouds, Bluestreak swerved a little to his right and bumped Prowl. The tactician immediately switched on his audio sensors. He cringed inwardly. The sound of human snoring was not exactly the most pleasant.
"By that awful noise I'm assuming that our friend Jack Sparrow is asleep?"
"Flat out on the back seat. Noise aunt that bad, you get used to it. Our 'Con's been pretty quiet too."
"I think he's in shutdown. He knows he has nothing to fear. No Autobot would shoot another mech without a purpose and at the moment he knows we need him."
"I'm sorry Prowl, y'know, for all this. I know its my fault that we're here."
"If this is about what Skywarp said earlier, no, its not your fault that we're here. Yes, you were distracted with trying to make sense of what was happening. I was distracted with trying to save you that I wasn't paying attention to everything else. The fault is just as much mine. Nor can I blame you, for I have always said that every situation has a logical explanation; you were just trying to find out what it was."
"But the other stuff he said. Are we Autobots too sentimental? Is that why we're always getting hurt? Because we're so busy trying to help others we forget our own safety?"
"I don't know Bluestreak. Its in our programming that's been handed down by our creators: to help one another, to care for each other. That's why Ironhide's always leaping in between Prime and Megatron's fusion cannon, why Jazz always tries to cheer us up even if we feel we don't need cheer; and why Ratchet always yells at each and every casualty in the repair bay. For myself: I would prefer all of us leaving a battle injured but alive, rather than have one dead and everyone else unscathed."
"That was very well said mate," they heard Jack say.
Casting their scanners back they saw Jack sitting cross-legged on Bluestreak's back seat, head sticking out of the open window.
"I mean it," he went on. "From the bottom of my heart, that was a very moving speech. I might give it to my crew someday."
"You were eavesdropping," said Prowl.
"No. No not all, no. I was asleep until just now and I happened to consciously over-hear what you said."
Prowl gunned his engine ever so slightly – the automotive equivalent of raising an eyebrow.
"Ok ok, I was eavesdropping!" Jack admitted. "Hello? Pirate. I couldn't help it. For all I know you could have been plotting against me."
"Autobots are not very likely to commit mutiny Captain Sparrow," said Prowl.
"Decepticons on the other hand", Bluestreak added. "Now that's a hobby for them."
"Well you know what they say mates – once bitten, twice shy and all that."
"And I conclude you have been bitten before?" asked Prowl.
"It's a long story," Jack replied. "Which we don't have time for because if I'm not mistaken, those lights up ahead are the first out-posts of Port Royal. So you might want to switch off those lights of your own mate."
The Autobots immediately turned off their headlights.
"Keep to the right, till you lose the lights of the main harbour," Jack instructed. "There's a deserted little cove there we can land at. No one ever goes there, legends say its haunted."
"Then why are we going there?" Bluestreak asked.
"Because there are no such things as ghosts," said Prowl. "No matter what you've been reading or watching with Jazz and Blaster. Now lets go."
They veered to the right and followed Jack's direction. The darkness didn't bother them at all – they just used their infrared scanners. Soon their hydrofoils scraped the sand of the beach and they were retracted and replaced with tires. As soon as they were all on firm sand, Skywarp included, Jack jumped out of Bluestreak and the Autobot transformed.
"You guys re-fuel or whatever and get ready for the morning. I'm going to have a look around."
"Is it safe for you to do that?" Bluestreak asked. "I mean, what if you get caught?"
"Son, I'm Captain Jack Sparrow, savvy? I'm not that easily caught. Do not worry about me. See to yourselves and make sure all is ready when I come back."
With that, he ran off into the night.
Skywarp transformed and began pacing the shore as Bluestreak began unloading the bottles from Prowl's back seat and filled up his fuel tank. Once Prowl was ready they switched roles.
"I don't trust him," Skywarp growled as Bluestreak transformed back to robot mode. "What if he's gone off to betray us and they wait till we're all out of fuel and carve us up and sell us off as scrap metal?"
"Skywarp, I'm going to carve you into scrap metal if you don't shut up", said Bluestreak. "Jack would never do that to us."
"How do you know that? You heard him. He's a pirate."
"And a good man," said Prowl. "We are not going to discuss this further. Now rest and save your energy. We'll need it come morning."
"If morning comes at all," Skywarp muttered as he settled down on the sand, away from the Autobots who only rolled their optics.
Jack returned at dawn carrying a sackful of tools, which he emptied onto the sand in front of Prowl who was already awake.
"I think I can safely assume you did not pay for those things," Prowl said.
"Of course not. These are Will's things. He's going to need them if we're going to get your friend fixed."
"He's not our friend."
"Yes well, whatever he is, you still need him."
Prowl frowned and shook Bluestreak awake, a little harder than was necessary. Skywarp woke up on his own as soon as he sensed the Autobots stirring.
"Right. Now as long as you're all sitting there, pay attention," said Jack. "Will has been living at the Governor's home all this while. However, today he'll be heading back to the blacksmith workshop to pick up a sword for one of the soldiers. Governor Swann and his daughter are away colonizing a nearby island and the good Commodore Norrington, bless his heart, left last morning on another hunt for the Black Pearl."
"How do you know all this?" Bluestreak asked.
"Wits and charm lad. If you possess those two traits people will be begging to help you."
Skywarp snorted. "Who did you threaten?"
"Didn't threaten no one mate, just made a promise to one of the Governor's maids."
"Which you have no intentions of keeping I'm sure," said Prowl.
"Of course not! The open seas and a bunch of scallywag pirates are no place for a sweet, young thing like that. Don't have it in me heart to put her through it."
"Because you're such a gentleman," Prowl deadpanned.
"Can we get started now?" Bluestreak asked.
Skywarp transformed. "I know what I'm doing. Just make sure you Autobots don't screw up." He took to the air and flew off.
Prowl and Bluestreak transformed and Jack got into Bluestreak's front passenger seat.
"Hang on tight Jack," Bluestreak said as he shut the door and sped off. Prowl counted to five and followed behind.
In the air above Skywarp banked, circled, dove and turned attracting the attention of the people on the ground below – mainly the soldiers. This left the streets somewhat clear for Prowl and Bluestreak to speed along, following Jack's directions. They reached the blacksmith's workshop just in time to see a young man about to go inside.
Jack immediately lept out of Bluestreak and tackled him to the ground, wrapping a black cloth around his face to cover his eyes and mouth. Prowl stopped beside the struggling men.
"Get him inside and strap him in securely," he said and opened the front passenger door.
Jack hauled a struggling Will to his feet and shoved him onto the seat, using the seatbelt to hold him in place. Prowl shut the door.
"Now follow us quick," he said. "I will signal to Skywarp to meet us back at the cove."
Jack got back inside Bluestreak and the two Autobots sped off. Prowl turned on his patrol lights while inside, Will continued to struggle.
"Please calm down," Prowl said. "I apologize for the inconvenience, but you can be assured that we are not going to hurt you. Now settle down."
The human stopped struggling.
When the Autobots reached the cove Skywarp was already standing there in robot form.
"Took you long enough," he said.
"Were you followed?" Prowl asked.
"Naw… flew off in the opposite direction, then used the cloud cover to get back here. Were both of you followed?"
"That's why we took so long," said Bluestreak. "We took the scenic route."
Jack went over to Prowl and opened the door, then hauled the other man to his feet once Prowl released the seatbelt. The Autobots transformed and Jack unwrapped the cloth from his face. Will blinked a few times and then turned around.
"JACK!" he exclaimed. "What are you doing here? And why did you kidnap me? And what are these… these things?"
"We're not things," Bluestreak said with a bit of a wounded air.
"Er… well I'm not sure what exactly they are either, but they say they're from the future and well, they need your help to fix something," Jack said.
"Me? But what can I do? And did you steal my things?"
"Borrowed. Borrowed without permission. Because we figured you were going to need them once you got here."
Skywarp came up and handed Will the teleportation console panel. "We need you to fix that."
Will took the console and looked at it. "Well, there's a broken piece of metal here that needs to be patched up, and a crack that needs welding, among other things."
"Then stop talking and get to it," Skywarp snapped.
"You are very unpleasant I'll have you know."
Bluestreak snorted, "THAT is the understatement of the century."
"Well it all depends on which century you're referring to," said Prowl.
Bluestreak threw his hands in the air. "I give up!"
The sun had reached its noon position by the time Will had 'fixed' the console and gave it back to Skywarp. As he connected it back to his systems Prowl and Bluestreak stood on either side of him, each holding onto a wing.
"Lets see if this works," he said.
Jack and Will stood back as the 3 Transformers shimmered and disappeared… and reappeared in the next few seconds.
"Are we home?" Bluestreak asked. Then he saw the two humans. "Guess not."
Prowl sighed, let go of Skywarp and sat down on the sand. For the first time in his life he was all out of ideas. Bluestreak sat down next to him.
"I'm sorry," said Will. "But I repaired it to the best of my ability. I don't know what else I can do."
The Autobots didn't reply. Skywarp went to the water's edge and kicked out at the breaking waves till he finally grew tired and went and sat down beside Prowl and Bluestreak. Soon Jack and Will joined them.
Afternoon stretched into evening and their shadows grew longer as the sun began to sink beyond the horizon. The wind blew stronger and some of the clouds broke – releasing their catch of raindrops. The Transformers paid them no heed. Each was desperately trying to think of a solution to their current problem.
"Maybe Wheeljack and Perceptor would have built something that could zap us back," Bluestreak said at last.
"That's assuming they know where to find us," said Prowl. "And given the circumstances under which we left, I highly doubt it."
They sunk back into silence again. The rain fell harder, accompanied by flashes of lightning and crashes of thunder. Bluestreak got up, transformed, and opened his doors.
"Get inside," he said to Jack and Will. "Its dangerous for you to be out here in this lightning."
"Its dangerous for us too," said Prowl, as he also got up and transformed.
"And how does transforming help?" Skywarp asked.
"Rubber tires are insulation," Prowl replied. "And unless you want to become the first lightning conductor of the 18th century, I suggest you transform as well."
Grumbling and muttering under his breath, Skywarp transformed, dropping his wheels as he did.
The storm lasted about half an hour during which lightning did strike the Transformers a few times, but did no more harm to them than give them a few surges. When the worst of it had passed over, Prowl and Skywarp transformed back. Bluestreak let Jack and Will out first and was about to revert back to robot form himself when he stopped short and turned on his headlights.
"P… Prowl. What are those?" he asked.
The others followed the beams of light towards the dark grove of palm trees.
"So the cove IS haunted," Jack said. "That's interesting."
"There's no such thing was ghosts," Prowl said. "Bluestreak transform, but keep your lights on them while I scan them." The others waited. "This is most odd. My scanners say they are indeed humans, but I'm not picking up any heat radiation."
"Maybe that's because they're already dead," said Jack.
The three translucent forms had almost reached them by now. Skywarp took a step back and aimed his laser at them.
"Yeah well, no Casper's going to be possessing me," he said. The Autobots glanced at him. "What? So Rumble and Frenzy like to watch Saturday morning cartoons. I've had the bad luck of being stuck with them a few times."
He fired his only working laser at the closest form, but the violet bolt passed harmlessly through it and impacted with the sand behind it.
"That enough confirmation for you?" Will asked Prowl.
The tactician remained silent. Bluestreak figured his CPU had overloaded again with this new bit of information.
"That wasn't a very nice thing to do mate," the lead ghost said. "Ye give us one reason why we shouldn't rip ye to shreds right now."
"Parley," Jack said, raising his hands slightly.
"Parley?" the ghost replied. "Aye well I guess that be reason enough. I senses the two of ye be pirates like us. What be your names?"
"I am Captain Jack Sparrow. This here's Will Turner. And what be your names mates?"
"Me name's Captain Ratelli. This here's Crossbones," he gestured to the one on his left. "And Bowsprit." He pointed to the one on his right.
"You seem somewhat familiar, have I crossed paths with you before?"
"Arr, ye might have seen us coming into Port Royal. We be the three buccaneers a-hangin' there as a warning to other pirates. But ye not be ones for warnings aye?"
"I guess not."
Ratelli laughed, then looked at the Transformers. "And what be these three?"
"Them? They're um… friends from… a faraway land."
"Faraway aye?" said the one called Crossbones. "As far as, say, the future?"
"How did you know about that?" asked Will.
"It be a long tale to tell," said Bowsprit. "The day we was hanged, just before the trap door opened, a voodoo priest appeared in the crowd, said we would not cross over and find peace until we suffered for all the crimes we laid upon his people."
"Aye," Ratelli continued. "Only when the future became past, when lightning strikes and does not kill. When the child sees, when the sage believes and when the magician does magic again, will we be allowed passage. Those be his very words."
"Well," said Bluestreak. "I followed you right upto the part about the past and the lightning, but I kinda lost you on the child, the sage and the magician part."
"I've got it!" said Prowl.
Skywarp rolled his optics. "And that's supposed to surprise us? Well forgive me for not jumping for joy."
"Shut up Skywarp," Bluestreak said in Prowl's defense.
Prowl cleared his throat. "If I may continue…"
"Knock yerself out matey," said Ratelli. "Its not like we be going anywhere soon."
"Your prophecy, if I can call it that, means this: future becoming past is the three of us traveling back in time to this century. Lightning struck us but couldn't kill us because we were insulated by our rubber tires. When the child sees: You're the youngest of the three of us Bluestreak, and you were the first one to see the ghosts."
"And the sage and the magician?" Bluestreak asked.
At this Prowl squirmed a bit.
"Well I think we all know who's the wiser out of the two of them," Jack said, nodding at Prowl and Skywarp.
"It has to be Prowl. He's the only one who didn't believe in ghosts, until now I guess. And that leaves Skywarp as the magician? How does that figure?"
"Teleportation," said Prowl. "When Skywarp was able to teleport again. Will fixed the console and we did teleport – if only for a few seconds."
"What went wrong?" Will asked.
"Skywarp teleports through space, not time – at least voluntarily. It what the ghosts say is true, their crossing over will cause a rift in time. If we teleport at this moment there is a chance we might be able to make it home."
"Well what are we waiting for?" Skywarp asked. "Lets teleport and get out of here."
"But how will we know if we can cross over?" asked Crossbones.
As if in answer, a light shone out of thin air.
"Just like in that Casper movie," Skywarp blurted out. Again the Autobots shot him curious glances. "They've watched the movie too! Its not my fault Megatron keeps asking me to baby-sit Soundwave's cassettes."
"Frankly I find that mental image very hard to imagine," said Prowl.
"I wonder if I shouldn't ask Jazz to drop Thundercracker a message," said Bluestreak.
"Why would Jazz be in contact with Thundercracker?" Prowl asked.
"Why would TC be in contact with Autobots?" asked Skywarp.
Bluestreak's optics darted around nervously. "Uh… I … uh… something about… erm…hehe…"
"Ahoy there mateys. This here light's not going to be around for ages. Now are ye coming with us or not?" asked Ratelli, clearly impatient.
"We'll talk about this when we get back to Autobot Headquarters," said Prowl.
He and Bluestreak knelt down in front of Jack and Will.
"How are you going to get back to your ship?" asked Bluestreak. "Its miles away from here."
"Y'know Jack, Elizabeth wont be back for a while. I'm sure we can hitch a ride on a merchant ship upto Tortuga and from there have someone send a message out to the Black Pearl," said Will.
"I like the way you think mate," Jack replied. "As you can see, I'm going to be all fine and dandy. Worry about your own fortunes gentlemen. And I mean this in the nicest way possible: I truly hope I never see you again."
"The feeling's mutual," Prowl said. He stood up, then tossed four bottles of rum to Jack and Will. "Enjoy that as a token of our thanks."
Jack's face lit up like a Christmas Tree. "Bless you both mates."
"Can we get going now?" Skywarp asked. "Why do you Autobots have to be so fragging mushy?"
"You owe your life to that mushiness Skywarp," said Bluestreak. "Now shut up and take us home."
"As soon as we step into that light, teleport us out of here and aim for the last area we were at before the accident."
"Anything to be rid of the two of you."
The 3 Transformers followed the 3 ghosts into the light. There was a shimmer and a flash and the light winked out. The night returned to its normal state.
"Well," said Jack. "That was interesting."
Bluestreak blinked as a cloud of dust burst into his field of vision. "Please let us be home," he said. Then he heard a very familiar sound.
His sight cleared in time for him to see Megatron take to the air. He smiled. "Yup, we're home."
Prowl turned to Skywarp. "Go. We will not harm you, you have my word on that. You have been a good ally, but I fear when we next meet it shall be as enemies again."
"And I wont hesitate to kill you should the chance arise," Skywarp said.
"The feeling's mutual," said Bluestreak.
Skywarp lept into the air, transformed and followed the retreating Decepticons.
Jazz raced upto them and transformed. "Man are we glad to see you two."
"What do you mean?" Bluestreak asked.
"Well the last we saw of both o' you was when you vanished with Skywarp. That was over an hour ago."
"An hour? But we were gone for days."
Jazz frowned. "Days?" he asked, confused.
"To cut a long story short," said Prowl. "We were teleported to the 18th century Caribbean and spent about five days there trying to figure out how to get back."
"Yeah," Bluestreak cut in. "And we met a pirate, got to sail the seas, and Prowl finally believes in ghosts."
"Whoa, hold up man," Jazz said. "This sounds like a tale best heard over a cup of high-grade energon."
"Actually, rum would be more appropriate."
"Alrighty, rum it is."
At that moment, Optimus Prime gave the order to transform and roll out.
"Hey Prowl," Bluestreak said as they joined to convoy heading back to the Ark. "You think if I wrote about what happened and about Jack and Will and the pirates; and sent it in to Hollywood, they would make a movie out of it?"
"It's a long shot," Prowl replied. "But I encourage you to try."
"Cool. Oh! Oh and Jazz!"
"While I was there, Jack Sparrow – the pirate – he taught me a really great song."
"Really now?" Jazz sounded too happy.
"Its nothing really," Prowl said.
"Nonsense. Lay it on me Blue-buddy!"
To Prowl's extreme displeasure Bluestreak sang the song and by the end of it Jazz was – as the humans put it – tickled pink.
"That's awesome man! Sing it for me one more time. I've got to record it."
"And then we teach it to the other guys?" Bluestreak asked.
"I really don't think Prime would approve," Prowl said.
"Aww loosen up Prowl, its just a song. What harm can it possibly do?"
"Way too much for my liking."
Jazz ignored him. "Now, one more time Blue."
Prowl audibly groaned.
"We're devils, we're black sheep. We're really bad eggs."
This was going to be a long drive home.
"Drink up me hearties. Yo ho!"