Disclaimer: I own nothing.

Chapter 11

"Well, you're both fine," Red Alert pronounced to the human and 'Bot. "Though you could do with a decent meal, Rad."

"Kind of figured that already," Rad stated as his stomach growled.

"So we're free to go?" Sideswipe asked.

"Rad is for now since it's self apparent why he was kidnapped. Optimus would like to have a word with you though," Red Alert told Sideswipe.

"Guess I should have known that much," Sideswipe sighed.

"Can I go home?" Rad asked hopefully. He missed the Baileys and really didn't want them to worry longer than necessary.

"Not until we have a plausible excuse for your disappearance," Red Alert told him.

"Couldn't I just say I was lost in the desert?"

"And how would you explain your lack of dehydration and sunburn?" Red Alert asked.

"I stayed in a cave during the day and cut into a few cacti?"

"Who would believe you got lost anyway?"

"Somebody would."

"Who?"

"Uhh…"

"Thought so."


Sideswipe waited outside the door to Optimus' office. He had a basic idea of what Optimus wanted to speak to him about. Stuff like 'How long have you known Spindle?' or 'Were you aware he was capable of this kind of violence?'

Had he known Spindle would hurt Hot Shot or go after Rad? Well, yes he had known Spindle was capable of it. But he didn't think Spindle was stupid enough to do it right under the Autobot commander's nose, even with his connections on the Council.

With any luck he'd just get a reprimand and extra guard duty. Worst-case scenario was he'd get sent back to Cybertron and separated from Blurr. 'Slag this isn't going to be pleasant,' Sideswipe thought as the door opened to admit him.


Optimus watched the nervous rookie. He wasn't overly enthused about subjecting Sideswipe to an interrogation this soon after a traumatic experience, but due to Spindle's connections with some higher ups the sooner this was dealt with the better.

"Sideswipe, how well did you know Spindle before he came here?" Optimus asked just wanting to get this over with so he could write whatever report would need to be written to keep Council off his back.

"We lived together for awhile, before I left," Sideswipe admitted.

"Did he ever hurt you then?" Optimus asked.

Sideswipe looked up surprised. That wasn't one of the questions he expected. "Yes. That was the main reason for the split."

"Did he threaten or assault you here prior to abducting you?"

"He pulled me into his room once," Sideswipe admitted. Optimus nodded.

"That will be all," Optimus told him before going back to his work.

Sideswipe stood in shock for a moment. No reprimand? No angry rant? No scrubbing the halls with a toothbrush?

Definitely not what he expected.


"So Spindle's creator is on the High Council. That's why he was willing to kidnap Sideswipe right out of the base. He figured Daddy dearest could swing him a pardon," Smokescreen commented leaning against the giant pool table in the Rec room while Jetfire lined up his next shot.

"Yeah. But with Optimus recommending incarceration I don't think it'll work out that way for Spindle. Plus kidnapping a rookie ain't exactly something to be proud of," Jetfire said nearly scratching on the eight.

"Least Sideswipe should be ok now. Blurr'll look after him if Spindle doesn't get sent to jail. I know I would if I was involved with someone with such a violent ex," Smokescreen said taking his shot.

Neither of them noticed Hot Shot stiffen in the corner before he relaxed again taking a swig of high-grade. With the week he'd had he wasn't up to disemboweling Blurr today.


Rad glared unhappily at the white and blue-stripped wall in front of him. Red Alert's grand plan was to drop him off at the hospital and have him claim he was in a cave-in.

Yeah, that was genius plan. The Baileys probably wouldn't let Rad go up the mountain ever again.

The door swung open as the doctor entered. "The results of your pregnancy test are positive," he said not looking up.

"Umm… I think you have the wrong room," Rad said. The doctor looked up.

"I don't suppose you are a Miss Korvolous, are you?" the doctor asked strictly business.

"No."

"Bradley White?"

"Yes."

"Ok then, you have no broken bones or internal bleeding. So you free to go."

Rad hurried out of the room.


'Home sweet home' Rad thought as he walked through the front door of the Bailey's house. Mr. and Mrs. Bailey walked slightly behind him, probably watching for any signs of trauma or a relapse.

Rad felt a pang of guilt. He just had to sit on that stupid ledge contemplating the mysteries of life, all alone, in the dark. He'd just been asking for trouble. He'd learned that way back when he was still living with his dad. Now the Baileys were worried about him.

Nothing could make him feel better at this point.

"How ya doin' little bro?" a deep, laughing voice asked.

Rad looked up to see a young man in his early twenties with blonde hair and sparkling blue eyes sprawled on the couch. He gaped at the man for about sixty seconds. Then…

"SHAD!" He laughed jumping into the man's open arms.


Meanwhile at the Nevada State Prison alarms were blaring as the guards searched in vain for the prisoner. So caught up in looking for the missing man nobody questioned the blonde man wearing the standard guard uniform driving away in the warden's private car.

Jason White drove casually for an hour until he reached a service station. There he asked directions to a small research town called High Desert

TO BE CONTINUED.

Xandra: Thank god that's over

Brigg: But what happened to Spindle

Xandra: He got sent back to Cybertron to go to prison. He'll either be back later or he could just become somebody's cyber bitch.

Brigg: Alrighty then.

Xandra: Everything else will be revealed in the sequel.