Sad little shorty about the femmes, also my take on bonding is slipped in. I don't own any of the characters in this story; Hasbro does. Enjoy.

The Cost

We all can see most of the costs of our own wars-lives, money, hope, families, and even sanity. The same can be said for the wars the Cybertronians fight. But there can be an even worse cost with them if the 'bot is bonded. Two lives are lost instead of one; sometimes more. Allow me to elaborate… it all started the morning the Great Battle began.

Cromia, Moonracer, Firestar, and Elita-1 were in their base control room; looking over figures and scan data. Cromia was constantly looking at the communications monitor, she had a bad feeling in the pit of her spark, something was about to go terribly wrong.

Cromia suddenly jumped up out of her chair, muttering, "Don't do it Iornhide, don't do it Iornhide… Please Primus no!" She collapsed to her knees, crying, whispering, "Just stay down, just stay down…"

Her teammates had all jumped to their feet, running to her, "Cromia! Cromia what is it?" Elita asked in fear.

"Don't do it, just stay down…" She let out a scream and fell to the floor, momentarily motionless, liquid streaming down her optics.

"Get her in the scanner!" Elita ordered.

It wasn't good. Her systems were fine, but her spark was fading, as was her sanity, "He's dead he's dead he's dead…" she constantly repeated, crying like no tomorrow.

"Who's dead?" Elita tried to sooth it out of her.

Cromia looked at her like she was the enemy, "Iornhide… Megatron's blaster…"

"Don't be silly; he's on that supply run to Earth, he's fine."

"No he's not! He's gone! He's gone!" she curled up into a ball on the medical table, "I think I need to be alone."

"Alright, we'll be right out there if you need us." Moonracer cooed.

They made communications to moon-base 1 not long after, and received the news, "Autobot city's under attack ladies. An' there's nothin' we can do. We've already sent Optimus and the Dinobots-"

"How did they get in Jazz?" Elita said sternly.

"They used one of our own ships… no one on that cargo run made it."

"Cromia was right then…"

"Hum? What're ya talkin' about Elita?"

"Cromia a few hours ago started acting peculiar and babbling about Iornhide having been destroyed… we thought she'd just had a little too much work…"

"I'm gonna go get some energon in her." Moonracer announced, "Maybe that'll help her spark!" Moonracer moved to open the med-bay doors when a blaster shot was heard from within. "Cromia!" When Moonracer opened the door the femme had gone grey, even her optics, they younger femme took the body in her arms, "No… Cromia! Say something! Cromia! Cromia!"

It was a long time before they got used to life without Cromia. And they all sensed a sudden change in Elita, especially when word got to them that Optimus was dead, she spent more and more time alone, and started refusing medical check ups. When they finally did drag her into First Aid's med bay, they were taken aback; her spark was fading, and had a large chunk missing. And she didn't seem surprised by it, or like she wanted to stop it.

"Elita this is serious!" Firestar shouted, she didn't want to lose another friend, to this strange disease.

"What does it matter? I don't want to live in a universe without Optimus anyway." Elita murmured.

She looked to First Aid, "This was caused because he and I were bonded. The moment a bonding partner is permanently off-lined. It becomes unbearable after a while…"

Moonracer looked at her terrified, "Is this the same thing that made Cromia take her own life?"

"Yes. Trust me, I have honestly thought of it, but know Optimus would never approve. And, even if he is just part of the matrix now, I know that the only way to reverse the decay of my spark would kill him all over again. I want the decay to be allowed, maybe then you can possibly use it to save others. It's what Optimus would've wanted."

"B-but Elita-1! I'm a medic! I can't allow you to just-"

"You can First Aid. And you will." It was only a few more days before Elita couldn't even leave her recharge bunk, and her teammates visited her with energon multiple times a day.

Then came the day; exactly two months after his death, at the exact time of his destruction, Elita finally went. Her entire team knew how much pain she had been in, both physical and mental, even though she hadn't shown any of it in the least. Moonracer cried for several days in a row, and Firestar lost her interest in everything. Powerglide and Inferno visited the femmes, trying to sooth them, but knew it was futile with so many lingering memories on Cybertron, and convinced Ultra Magnus to allow them to take the two femmes to Earth.

All the hope in the universe however would never completely heal the two femmes' broken hearts, and they had both decided something, bonding was a terrible idea. And that broke the heats of the meches' who loved them. But it was all a mater of time before the Decepticons re-grouped, and life got even worse.

Sad, sad fic… I wrote the original version of this a few months ago, depressed about stuff and watching TF a little more than I probably should've been… yeah, RnR.