Transformers Reloaded - The Movie
by Philip S.
Author's Note : This story is essentially a rewrite of Transformers the Movie, an attempt to turn a feature-length toy commercial with some decent story ideas into a full-fledged story. Also, since the movie was produced during season 2 of the cartoon series, it did not include many of the cartoon mainstays that should have been around continuity-wise. This will also be fixed in this story. Finally, it is not this story's goal to lead into the third season of the cartoon as it is, but rather into an alternate version of it. Some things will be the same, others will change. Just read and see.
Oh, just to give fair warning: If you are a fan of Wheelie, Daniel, stupid Grimlock, or moron Ultra Magnus, don't read this story. You'll be disappointed.
Prologue: The Great Unmaker
Earth date 08.07.2005
In a star system many light years away from the planet Earth was a planet that, upon cursory inspection, bore a certain resemblance to the artificial planetoid known as Cybertron, home planet of the Transformers. Unlike that orb, though, the planet Lithonia had started out as a purely natural celestial body.
During the height of the civil war on Cybertron multiple groups of Transformers, the so-called neutrals, abandoned their home world in order to escape from the fighting. One such group, Autobots by design but with no interest to take up arms against the Decepticons, eventually landed on Lithonia and cyberformed it until it closely resembled their lost home.
For millions of years Lithonia remained a virtual paradise. Its robotic inhabitants lived in peace and harmony. Those few that advocated a return to Cybertron were soon forgotten and abandoned their quest, the leisure of their existence too tempting to uphold old ideals. Some remembered the fellow robots left behind in the midst of war, but even sorrow and grief could not last long on Lithona, the closest thing to robotic utopia ever to exist in the universe.
Unfortunately for the Lithonians the days of their paradise were numbered.
Lithonia was not completely without defences. For eons the inhabitants had feared that one day they would be found by the Decepticons, the cruel military machines that had so savagely slaughtered their way across Cybertron. So the planet was orbited by armed satellites and multiple ground-based cannons were eternally pointed at the sky, automated computers keeping watch for any danger.
Unfortunately these computers, while highly sophisticated, were ultimately limited. When deep-space telemetry picked up the invader, it was immediately classified as a rouge asteroid due to its immense size and mass. Calculations showed that it would harmlessly pass the planet, its gravity causing only the slightest wobble in Lithonia's own orbit.
By the time the giant celestial body decelerated and changed course directly toward the planet, the computers realized that something was off. Their programming was unable to deal with something like this, though. No one had told them what to do in case a planetary mass almost three times the size of Lithonia came thundering toward them. So they did the only thing they knew to do: They called for assistance.
The first Lithonian arrived in the defence command centre a mere five minutes later, but those five minutes had sufficed for the invader to come within a few million kilometres of the planet. An insignificant distance astronomically speaking. The ground on Lithona began to shake as the gravity of the much larger and denser planet began to reach out toward it. The Lithonians looked to the skies, but for a few more seconds they would be spared the sight of their destroyer.
Only that sole Lithonian in the defence command centre, an ancient robot called Arbulus who remembered life on Cybertron, was granted a view that was inarguably unique in the universe. And among the countless life forms in the galaxy Arbulus was one of the few who had seen this sight before. Not in reality, of course, but in the form of ancient data files and metal carvings. He saw and he remembered. Remembered the name the ancients had given this terrible force of nature.
"Unicron," he whispered, his circuits nearly freezing in terror.
The door behind him opened and another of his race entered, a younger robot who had never seen the ancient files and knew nothing of this giant invader except that it threatened his homeworld.
"What are you doing, Arbulus?" the young one questioned angrily. "That thing is almost upon us! Activate the defences!"
When the old robot still didn't respond the young one pushed him away and instructed the computers to fire. Programs were activated, circuits closed, and Lithonia's defences went into action. Flashes of destructive energy surged toward the thing Arbulus called Unicron, enough firepower to reduce an entire fleet of invading Decepticons to scrap metal.
Unicron didn't even seem to notice. The distance shrunk further, less than 50,000 kilometres now separating the two planets. Lithonia began to tremble in earnest now, the continental plates shifting, the atmosphere being torn away. The robots in the streets could now see the image of their doom. Even as their world was shaking itself apart some of them froze in terror.
A giant orb filled the sky, the light of Lithonia's twin suns glinting off its metal surface. The side that was facing the doomed world was adorned with a giant maw, one that was even now opening. From somewhere within a light shone down onto the doomed world, a crimson glare that turned everything the colour of blood. To either side of the maw were enormous metal spikes, curved like a bull's horns, and these spikes, each hundreds of kilometres in length, pierced Lithonia's surface with thundering force.
Arbulus finally managed to overcome his terror and turned toward his younger counterpart, who was staring in impotence as the world he was tasked to defend died within minutes.
"The ships," Arbulus screamed at him. "Get to the ships! It's our only chance!"
His voice snapping the other out of his stupor, the two robots took off toward the defence centre's space sport. Two ships were docked there, interplanetary craft usually used for system patrols. Their metal limbs crossed the distance in seconds, but even those few seconds sufficed to see nearly a third of their planet breaking apart.
Arbulus paused for a moment, looking upward into the giant maw of Unicron. Chunks of his world were being torn upward, pulled in by the gravity well of the much larger planet. He watched helplessly as hundreds, thousands of his brethren tried scrambling for safety, but there was none to be found and they shared the fate of their world.
His body crossed the distance to the ship nearly without conscious assistance and before he knew it he was strapped into the pilot's seat, his fingers entering the launch sequence. He had done this a hundred times before, but never with his world dying around him.
Six ships managed to blast off the surface before it was torn to shreds, the entire planet breaking up and being reduced to so many rocks that were devoured by Unicron. Of the six ships four were shattered in the debris storm caused by the death of their world, their remains drawn down the gravity well with everything else. The fifth ship almost managed to reach safe distance, but the gravity of Unicron intensified even more as its system's reached maximum capacity due to the influx of new raw materials. Its engines outmatched, the ship tumbled to its destruction.
Only one ship was lucky enough to achieve escape velocity and blast away to safety. On board that craft Arbulus and his young colleague, a robot named Kranix, watched in frozen terror as Unicron began to glow with energy, energy gained from the destruction of their world and their people.
"How could this happen so fast?" Kranix asked in disbelief. "What could possibly ...?"
"Unicron," Arbulus told him, his optics fixed on the force of nature receding behind them. "It is called Unicron and it is the Great Unmaker."
Kranix simply nodded, overwhelmed. "What ... what do we do now?"
Arbulus deactivated his optics for several moments, not wanting to see anything from the outside world where his paradise had just been swept away like dust before this giant's uncaring hand.
"We need to warn them."
"We need to return to Cybertron."