This story was also written before the end of "Transformers: Armada," and has just been recently found after being lost for a good long while. (Thanks Trax!)
Burden I Never Wanted
Thanks again to my buddy Trax for suggesting this title.
(Scene opens with Rodimus Prime, Cheetor and Hot Shot sitting at a table, playing cards.)
Hot Shot: So, how'd you get stuck with this leadership stuff old man?
Rodimus Prime: Let's see…well, after I indirectly killed Optimus, a whole lot of slag happened and I ended up getting trapped in that big Unicron guy and nearly got strangled to death by Galvatron. I reached for the Matrix and…viola. I didn't even think anything would happen, to be honest. I was just planning to beat him over the head with it. Anyway, after all that, I suddenly have to grow up with the weight of the universe on my shoulders, and just when I'm finally getting used to it, Optimus Prime comes back to life…again…and becomes leader…again. At first I was thrilled, but then everyone started talking about what a "crappy" job they think I did.
Cheetor: Ah, that's nothing. Things were fine for me till we got back to Cybertron. Then my Optimus gets into some bad bananas or something starts acting all stoned, talking about the beast within and all that slag. So, I've got to take over and start cleaning his mess. Both figuratively and literally… (Sighs)
Hot Shot: Pfft! At least you were eased into it gradually! After my Optimus blew up to save the Earth, all the other Autobots start to beat the ever‑loving slag outta me until I 'figure out' what my entire series was about from day one! They say it was a 'test'. Yeah right…Plus, everyone hates my toy! That is until they had the bright idea to give me your paint job! (Points and glares at Rodimus)
Cheetor: At least you only have two to worry about. At one point there was more of me than any other character! Even Optimus!
Rodimus Prime: At least neither of you has to worry about being referred to as the 'Flaming Winabago'.
(They all collectively sigh when suddenly, Side Burn bursts into the room.)
Side Burn: Weeellll….my toy is well liked and often used as the comparison for others. In fact, most collectors loved it so much they didn't have a problem buying my repaint! Not to mention that my charming personality is adored! And…I never got stuck with the Matrix or any other form of leadership! Even when everyone thought my Optimus was dead! Ha!
Rodimus Prime/Hot Shot/Cheetor: ...
Rodimus Prime: …GET 'IM!
Side Burn: Aw scrap.
(Side Burn transforms and races away while the other three do the same and give chase)