A/N: Whoo! Bet you guys didn't expect to see this thing again! Frankly, I got sick of it just sitting there on my computer collecting digi-dust so I decided to just suck it up and finish the darn thing. This is dedicated to everyone who kept bugging me and dropping hints to keep me from forgetting about it.
Part Two: Hell's Afraid They'll Take Over
He tried to take back what he said before his Commanding officer took a liking to the idea. Guarding the twin bundles of trouble was the last thing he wanted or needed. "Me? But I can't guard them! I…"
"Oh suck it up," laughed Skywarp, happy to be leaving the task to the gloomy Sunticon. "You'll have tons of fun together!"
"You can join him," Starscream said to his black companion. Skywarp's crimson optics widened in shock.
"What? But Starscream, I can't! I have to…"
"Oh please," his superior snorted. "That Stunticon couldn't watch a human infant. You on the other hand…"
"Hey, wait a minute!" Dead End defended himself staunchly. "I can guard them just fine by myself. I don't need to babysit a jet too."
Now all three Seekers looked offended at the young Porsche who was just beginning to think he'd be better off if he just shut his mouth. Motormaster saved the group from total mayhem just as it was about to begin. No doubt the twins would take full advantage of such a distraction. And they didn't need to explain to their leader why two Autobots were able to cause trouble for eight Decepticons inside the Nemesis.
"Then you'll do fine watching the prisoners," the Stunticon Commander shushed his foolish underling before he could say anything else.
Dead End realized too late that he'd been had. "But…"
"That's not a request." His tone, if not his words, certainly ended whatever argument might be next.
Skywarp eyed the pouting Decepticon like one watching something truly disgusting. He turned to his own superior, a pleading light in his optics. "Starscream, you can't expect me to…"
"I expect you to do what you're told," the Air Commander shook his head, unyielding.
Never one to be ignored for long, Sideswipe started walking on his own accord. "For the love of Primus," he sighed dramatically. "I'll guard myself if you slaggers can't decide. C'mon, Sunny, we'll find the damn brig ourselves."
Immediately attention was diverted to the twins as Thundercracker and Breakdown leapt to intercept them. A brief scuffle ensued that comprised mostly of the Lamborghini brothers being pounced on from every angle possible. If there were two things the Decepticons did not want loose in their base, their names would be Sunstreaker and Sideswipe. In no particular order.
The yellow twin hissed in annoyance as his head came dangerously close to hitting the intruder alarm. "Watch it, Scrapbucket," he warned Skywarp. "You dent me in any way, shape, or form an' I'll take it outta your turbines."
The black Seeker narrowed his optics, not appreciating the threat. "You watch it, Slagsucker. You're on my turf now."
"Enough," Starscream gained control of his crew. "Let's just get them to the brig before they cause any more trouble."
"Frag it all, flyboy, that's where we were headed!" Sideswipe protested. Like most of their Autobot counterparts, the Decepticons chose to ignore anything further the red twin spewed out.
The brig, as it turned out, wasn't very far into the bowels of the Nemesis. None of their irritable captors offered any explanation as to why this was, but Sunstreaker managed a theory of his own to keep his mind off the spectacular dent Motormaster was making with his tight grip. He assumed that were he a Decepticon with sights on conquering the universe, he would not want to give a prisoner too much of a tour of his base as they were being paraded into the detention area.
And besides, would he, as a Decepticon or Autobot, want Sideswipe running around any further into a military unit than absolutely necessary?
What was he, slagging stupid?
"Finally," groaned the poor Air Commander as they entered the brig. It was a fairly simple holing area as far as holding areas went. And the twins held a certain level of expertise when it came to the nuances of such places, being well familiar with their own.
"Welcome to your new home, Autobums," Wildrider giggled, not able to resist the millennia-old insult. "Enjoy your stay."
"Well it's rather sparse, though, isn't it?" Sideswipe objected, thoroughly displeased with the hospitality he felt he deserved. "What do you expect us to do, just sit there?" he waved to one of the empty cells.
Thundercracker gave the bold mech a look of disbelief. Skywarp, however, was not so silent about the matter, quite fed up with the whole business with the pair. "Well excuse us for not setting up a bar of warm high-grade energon and game area for you."
"What did you expect?" Starscream demanded, feeling a strong headache coming on. "You'll stay here and be glad we don't deactivate you!"
"But that's boring!" the red Autobot continued, not even pretending to be affected by the threat. He heard enough of the same from his own side after all. Starscream just couldn't compare to Ratchet no matter how hard he might try.
Sunstreaker nodded sagely. "Bad things happen when he's bored."
"Terrible things!" his brother added.
"You don't want him bored."
"You don't want me bored."
"How hard did you slam him into the wall?" Breakdown whispered to Drag Strip. His brother shrugged.
"You'll just have to be bored," Starscream snapped, too drained to even think of a decent retort. The twin Autobots were herded into an empty cell together, mistake number 3 as far as Sunstreaker was concerned. Ranking right after assigning Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dum to guard duty and leaving his brother with nothing to do.
Formal duties pertaining to the prisoners done with, those not assigned with babysitting made a hasty retreat. Skywarp and Dead End watched them go with intense longing shining in their scarlet optics.
Sunstreaker rubbed mournfully at his shin, a shin that only this morning had been shining as brilliantly as any star in the galaxy. Now it was riddled with dents and scratches. He was a soldier, a front-liner no less, and the cause he fought was worthy. The Decepticons were his enemies and he warred with them accordingly. But now… now it was personal. Those slag-sucking 'Cons would rue the day they came online…
"Oy, Buttercup, wake up!" Sideswipe rapped the side of his head, earning a dark look in reward.
"What?" Sunstreaker asked testily, not at all pleased with the events of the day. Sure it had started out fun, but it was definitely not worth it.
Instead of answering him, his twin looked over to the two Decepticon nannies. "Hey, how long will we be here?"
Skywarp shrugged from his game of solitaire on the only computer present. "Till our Commanders work out some sort of deal."
"So a long time?" Sideswipe summed up.
The jet nodded.
"Well that's just slagging perfect," Sunstreaker rolled his optics. At the pace it took anything to get done with the higher uppers, he wouldn't be seeing a steam shower until the war was over.
"Well since we're gonna be here for a long time, I may as well tell you that the décor sucks," the red Lamborghini sighed, crossing his arms sullenly.
"Well we'll have to work harder to please you then, won't we Your Majesty," Dead End snarled, already upset at current events without dealing with a fussy Autobot.
"Your Majesty… I like that," Sideswipe grinned to himself. Deciding their captive had returned to the realm of the clinically insane, both Stunticon and Seeker turned their backs on him.
"What do you want anyway?" Sunstreaker grumbled in a low voice.
His brother smiled in that Cheshire Cat way only he was capable of. "Did you do it?"
The yellow twin huffed in indignation, insulted that his skills had just been questioned. "Of course I did it, dummy. Who do you take me for? You?"
"Ha ha, very funny. Now hand the rest over."
Sighing, Sunstreaker nevertheless did so. If his brother didn't get something to do soon, he may very well explode. Not that he minded an opportunity to be a free sibling-less mech, but if Sideswipe died it would involve a lot of paperwork and messy questions. Well, he could always blame it on the Decepticons…
Vibrating like a human child at Christmas, Sideswipe had to struggle to keep his actions secret from the bored babysitters on the other side of the bars.
"I suppose they're just going to leave us here to rust until the Powers That Be decide what to do with the Autobots," Dead End groaned as he stared at the clock on the wall.
Skywarp scoffed at the miserable Stunticon. "You're just a ray of slagging sunshine, aren't you? Ever think of looking on the bright side of things for once? Y'know, optimism?"
"Don't see why you would," Sunstreaker added oh-so-helpfully. "Not like it works anyway."
"Shut up you," the jet was much less frightened of the deadly dandelion now that they were on opposite sides of a cage. Turning back to Dead End he tried again, determined to create himself a better fellow Autobot-sitter. "Come on, Deady, it can't be all that bad, right? I mean, you're one of the front line warriors of the Decepticon army! That has to be fun."
Thinking on it at great length, the Combaticon finally sighed. "Well, the first year was definitely the worst. Oh, and the second year, that were the worst too. The third year I didn't enjoy at all. After that, I went into a bit of a decline…"
"Oh frag it all, I give up," Skywarp pouted, crossing his arms and leaning back in his chair. He was now resolved to this unpleasant fate and hoped to come out of it alive and whole.
A half-cycle hadn't even gone by before every alarm on the base went off, nearly deafening those who heard them.
"Intruders," cried Skywarp, leaping to his feet. Making sure the twins were still secure in their pen, which they were, the jet pulled out his weapons and headed for the door.
Then he noticed the Stunticon was in no rush to join him.
"Well?" he demanded.
"Well what?" Dead End asked, looking up at him.
"Are you coming?"
The Porsche sighed. "I don't see the point."
"The point in what exactly?"
"To slag the Autobots before they slag us," Skywarp railed. What was this guy's problem?
"Well, yes of course, but what's the point of it?"
"We're all going to be slagged eventually anyway. Today, tomorrow…"
Deciding to give up before he broke down and gave his fellow twin-sitter a premature deactivation, Skywarp fled the room.
Dead End returned to glumly slouching in his chair, tracing invisible patterns on the floor with his left foot.
Sideswipe grinned at his brother.
The intruder alarms stopped quite suddenly.
A few minutes later, Skywarp re-entered the room, a puzzled expression on his face. "The scanners don't show anything," he reported to the Stunticon who probably couldn't care any less.
"An ambush, most likely," was Dead End's opinion on the matter.
"Er… yeah, whatever." He plopped down in the adjacent chair, reclining his legs on the nearby counter. "I wish it was. Then I'd actually get to slagging do something."
A few cycles passed.
Sideswipe's smile grew.
Even Sunstreaker smirked.
The alarms went off again.
"Slaggit!" Skywarp cursed, leaping to his feet. "Make up your mind!"
Without even pausing to ask the Stunticon if he wanted to come, as he already knew the answer, the Seeker left once more to find the enemy.
Sideswipe shook his head at his brother. "My my, Sunny, the security these guys have… you'd think they'd be able to install a decent system at least."
"You'd think," Sunstreaker quipped back. "It makes one wonder why we haven't won this war yet."
"Oh you will," Dead End cut in morosely. "Just give it time."
The sirens stopped once more, leaving a faint ringing noise in everyone's audios at the sudden silence. As expected, a sullen purple and black jet trudged in looking like he'd just ingested something foul. He didn't offer an explanation this time, but just plopped in his chair and glared at the wall.
Sideswipe shrugged innocently when the Seeker shot him a nasty look too. How could he have done anything locked in the cell the whole time?
From the silence, red lights flashed and alarms went off…
"So Prowl," Sideswipe asked conversationally as the three drove home together from the trade-off site. "How much were we worth?"
"I alone must have cost at least 500 cubes of energon," Sunstreaker boasted confidently. "The Decepticons must have known I was worth no less."
"Yeah right, Sunny, keep telling yourself that. I'm the smart one, I'm worth more than you." Sideswipe turned his attention back on the silent Datsun. "So c'mon, Prowl, how much?"
The Vice Commander thought for a moment before finally giving them an answer. "1000 cubes of energon," he answered. "The exchange was made before your release."
"1000! Woah," breathed Sunstreaker in disbelief. He hadn't actually thought that the Autobots would pay such a ransom. Militarily, they were too expendable for that.
"How'd you find all the cubes in that time?" Sideswipe asked. "And no offence, Prowl, but you guys were actually willing to pay all that?"
"Oh no, you misunderstand," Prowl replied ironically. "I simply called the Decepticons and asked how much they would pay for us to come collect you."
A/N: You must remember that even though it is finished now, it was my first TF story in a long long time. It is far from a fine piece of literature. In fact, it's fairly sad. But I just wanted to get it done and over with. For those who are wondering, Sunstreaker attached the signal to set off the alarms when he was thrown against the wall nearby. I was going to post the lyrics to 'Me and My Shadow' at the end of this, but the powers that be have decreed it illegal. So… I would suggest looking it up or finding the song. It is absolutely brilliant and fits the twins perfectly! Now scurry along, ya'll!