KiWi: Woohooo! Chapter… err, Torio, what chapter am I on again?
Torio: Chapter 6.
KiWi: Oh, yeah, chapter 6! Anyway, Christmas was good to me, 'coz I got this! (holds up flash drive) This way, I won't have to deal with the school computers eating my floppy discs anymore.
Torio: Don't expect her to update faster, though. That's a different problem entirely.
KiWi: Time for reviews! I fear for Thatredcar's life, simply because I have seen what happens when you come between addicts and their Jolt. It's not a pretty sight.
Torio: Iniku Dakishi, Master Solo and Storm Blue Lightning Saix want this story to continue. So she is continuing.
KiWi: Starscream Girl likes human Starscram. He is sooooo cute, huh?
Torio: And SpartanCommander also seems to agree that the 'Cons are thoroughly screwed.
KiWi: And that about sums it up. Imaginary candy canes for all! Time to start the story!!!
Alexis shook her head. Transformers from a parallel universe? It sounded so absurd, yet it made sense. She looked at Richard ("Ratchet" she corrected herself mentally) and searched for any sign of deceit. She shook her head again. If he was an Autobot, like he claimed, why would he deceive her?
Then something clicked in the back of her head. If Richard was really an Autobot, and he always got in fights with Skyler, did that mean that he was…
Alexis turned to Skyler, who visibly flinched. "You're a Decepticon, aren't you?" she asked. Skyler backed away from her. "You might as well admit it."
Skyler went to run. Alexis went to catch him. Skyler decided to knee her in the gut.
"Someone get him!" Hot Shot shouted. Too late, Skyler had already made it out of the door and down the hallway.
Alexis staggered to her feet. She glared at Ratchet. "You seem awfully calm. Don't you think he might escape?"
"No, I don't." he replied bluntly. "I saw Red Alert activate the security system. He's not going to get far."
All Alexis could manage was a small "oh."
"You hit her?"
Skywarp looked at Thundercracker. "Of course I hit her." He said. "I had to get out of there."
"But you hit her." Thundercracker repeated.
Skywarp blinked. "So?"
Thundercracker shook his head and sighed. "I swear, you are such a slagging idiot. You hit one of the Autobots' pets when they found out you were an enemy Decepticon."
Skywarp made no move, so Thundercracker grabbed him by the ear and dragged him out of the room they were in.
"Ow! What did I do now? Where are we going?" Skywarp asked
"We're going to go make peace with the Autobots before we get ourselves killed." Thundercracker answered.
"Ow! Do you have to pull so hard?"
Thundercracker looked Skywarp in the eye. "Yes, Skywarp, I do." Then he tugged the ear a little bit harder.
"Are you sure about this?" Rad asked. "This seems kind of risky."
"I've done this hundreds of times, kid." Ironhide assured. Rad gave him a critical stare. "Okay, so maybe I haven't been a human before, but this'll work."
"We're going to be caught and shot." Rad mumbled.
"We'll make it." Ironhide gave a small smile. "Starscream's not always all there."
"Starscream's not the one I'm worried about. Wheeljack is." Rad muttered. Ironhide gave him a blank stare. "The giant one."
"Right." Ironhide paused. "On the count of three. One. Two. Three." The duo ran to retrieve the crystal piece.
Ratchet looked at the doorway. "Wait here." He said, and left. A few minutes passed, but instead of Ratchet returning, two others came in.
"And you two are?" Alexis asked irritably.
"Bumblebee and Wheeljack." They answered obediently.
"And you're Autobots, right?" Alexis asked. They nodded.
Carlos walked up behind them. "Just making sure, 'coz the Wheeljack here is a Decepticon."
Wheeljack grinned. "That's okay, I understand. It happens."
Bumblebee sat on the ground. "The fighting's stopped." He said cheerfully.
Seconds later, Ratchet and the one they have been calling Sam stepped into the room. They both looked rather irritated.
"Congratulations, Ratchet," Wheeljack called out, "you're one of the few people who have gotten Skyfire mad."
"Shut up." They both muttered at the same time.
Carlos and Alexis looked at each other, and started to walk towards Skyfire. They were stopped midway by a sound from down the hallway. The door opened and a very upset TC pushed Skyler onto the ground in front of them.
"Apologize." TC growled at Skyler. Skyler didn't make a move. "You are going to apologize right now, Skywarp!"
Skywarp looked up at Alexis. " 'm sorry." He muttered sullenly.
"Get up." Alexis hissed. Skywarp stood up. She slapped him.
"Ow! Hey, what was that for?!"
"That was for kneeing me in then stomach." Alexis stated coldly. She slapped him again, this time harder. Both Carlos and TC winced. "And that's for deceiving us!"
"Not my fault! Sou-" he began.
"Whose fault is it?" Alexis asked.
"I can't tell you. I've got a bet resting on the fact that I'm not going to blow our cover." Skywarp stated.
"Just go." She growled, pointing over by where Bumblebee was sitting. Skywarp decided to listen for once and leave the human alone. Alexis then turned to TC.
"I'm afraid we haven't been properly introduced." He said. "My name's Thundercracker. TC for short." He held out his hand for a handshake.
"Yeah, whatever." She grumbled and walked away.
Thundercracker blinked, obviously oblivious to what just happened. "Did I do something to offend her?" he asked.
"Nah." Carlos answered. "We just don't trust friendly Decepticons. Also, she's in a bit of a bad mood."
"Oh. So my existence has offended her?"
Carlos sighed. "You really are a pessimist, aren't you?"
Thundercracker frowned. "I'm not a pessimist. I merely tell it like it is."
"I told you this was a bad idea!" Rad shouted. He looked down into the river.
"Shh… I think we lost 'em." Ironhide whispered.
Rad frowned. "What are we going to do now?"
Ironhide looked down. "Haven't thought that far ahead yet." He admitted. Rad groaned. "Hey, at least we lost the-" Ironhide didn't get to finish his sentence because he was tackled into the river. Rad turned around quick enough to see Starscream just before he was pushed into the river, and was swept away by the current.
Starscream watched as the two were swept downstream and smiled. He quickly covered his smile when he heard Megatron come up behind him.
"Starscream, report." He demanded.
Starscream frowned. "They managed to jump into the river before I could retrieve the crystal."
Alexis sighed. This was a horrible mess. She looked up at the stars and sighed again. She heard footsteps behind her. She turned around and saw Thundercracker. "What do you want?" she growled.
"To get out of the base. It's too confining in there." He answered. "But if this spot is taken, I can go somewhere else." He turned to walk away.
"You can stay." Thundercracker smiled and sat down. "How can you find the base too confining? It's huge in there."
"I don't really like it indoors. Typical Seeker behavior, really." Thundercracker answered. "I feel better outside."
Alexis gave him a flat look. "You're not very good at being a human, are you?"
"Nope. And I don't want to stay a human. No offense."
Alexis eyed him warily. "Why are you so friendly?"
Thundercracker blinked. "It's not that I'm friendly, it's that I'm not as biased as the others tend to be. Skywarp's the social butterfly."
"Skywarp is an idiot." Alexis muttered.
"He's not as stupid as everyone thinks he is." Thundercracker replied.
"You call him stupid, too."
Thundercracker laughed. "I've been his friend for longer than the human race has existed. I have an excuse."
"Hey, guys. Whatcha talkin' about." Skywarp said as he ran out and sat next to Thundercracker.
"We're talking about how much of an idiot you are." Thundercracker replied blandly. Skywarp pouted. "Why are you out here?"
Skywarp made a gesture in the direction the base was. "Soundwave and Skyfire are yelling at Ratchet. It was kind of scary."
"What's so scary about that?" Alexis asked.
"Soundwave doesn't yell." Thundercracker answered. "It's just his personality. He almost never shows emotion at all."
"And Skyfire brings new meaning to the term 'non-combat type'." Skywarp added.
Alexis blinked. "You're all bizarre."
Skywarp laughed. "If you think we're bizarre, you should meet some of the others we have to work with."
"Yeah. Being on Space-Bridge duty with Dirge is enough to make you want to blow your head off." Thundercracker muttered.
Alexis shook her head. "I don't want to know."
Thundercracker stood up and stretched. "I'm heading back. If there's a fight going on that involves Soundwave and Skyfire, it might actually be worth watching."
Alexis also got up. "I'm coming too." Skywarp looked at her. "Staying out here alone with you is a good way to fall victim to one of your pranks."
Skywarp smiled. "You really are smart, aren't you?" He stood up. "I might as well go back too. Being alone out here is no fun."
Rad wasn't really sure how he got out of the river. Ironhide probably dragged him out. When Rad was out of the water, however, he collapsed to the ground.
"Man." Rad said exasperated. He was wringing the water out of his clothes when he realized something. He pulled the crystal piece and a plastic wrapped device out of his pocket. "You would think he would have taken the crystal." Rad muttered. Ironhide snatched the device out of his hand.
"He's up to something." Ironhide unwrapped the device. He eyed it warily. "Well, provided this isn't a bomb, we can contact your Autobot friends."
Rad looked up. "What are the chances it's a bomb?"
"We're talking about Starscream here."
Rad blinked. "Okay then." He stood up and looked around. "Dude, what's with the trees here? It looks like something has been eating them."
Ironhide's eyes widened in terror. "Oh slag."
"You look rather smug for someone who has just failed." Wheeljack stated. "What are you up to?"
Starscream smirked. "I have no idea what you're talking about."
Wheeljack frowned. "You do have the crystal piece, don't you?"
"Nope. As I said, they got away with it."
Wheeljack crouched down so he was at eye level with Starscream. "You let them get away with it." He whispered.
"I don't know what you're talking about."
Starscream glared at him. "I can lie to Megatron, but he always find out if I physically keep something from him." Starscream whispered. "He can't have the crystal yet. The Autobots can't use it. As long as it is a stalemate, I can sit here and plan about getting us out of this mess alive."
Wheeljack stood up. "This is treason, you know."
"I seem to get that a lot." Starscream chuckled. "Are you going to help me out, like you said?"
"Not with treason."
Starscream sighed. "So you're one of the blindly loyal types. Oh well."
They were walking back to the base when Alexis realized something.
"Oh my gosh, we didn't go to school today!"
"Such a pity." Skywarp muttered sarcastically.
"I'm sure that Red can make the records say you did go to school today." Thundercracker stated. "I mean, we have to be taken off the records, so he can do it at the same time."
"But, that would be lying…" Alexis started. "Oh, yeah, forgot I was talking to Decepticons here."
"Isn't that stereotyping?" Skywarp asked.
"Oh, like you should be one to talk." Alexis shot back. "You all think that humans are an inferior race."
"You are inferior." Thundercracker said with a playful shove. "You have no wings and have a tendency to go 'squish'."
"So much for not being as biased as the others." Alexis muttered.
"Just because you are a member of an inferior race does not mean that you deserve to be involved in a war that you have had no part of." Thundercracker stated. Alexis gave him a bewildered look. "In our universe, our existence is not a secret."
"So, there are human casualties because of your battles?" Alexis asked. Thundercracker nodded. "Most of the others don't care, do they?"
"Some of them go out of their way to hurt the humans." Thundercracker said solemnly.
"Like Starscream." Skywarp added. "I think he has a personal vendetta against the whole planet, though. He's a little gitched, if you know what I mean."
They walked a little more, then Alexis asked, "Why are you guys so cold? I mean, lives are lost, and you act like you don't care."
"You're a part of this war now." Thundercracker said stoically. "When you lose someone because of this war, then you'll understand."
"We've picked up a signal of some kind!" Red Alert shouted. "It's in the area where we lost Rad."
"Do you think it's him?" Optimus asked.
"I don't know." Red Alert admitted. "It might be a Decepticon trap."
Optimus turned to the human transformers. "Is anyone else out there? Someone we didn't find?"
"I saw Frenzy." Skyfire stated.
"Me too." Wheeljack said. "And Starscream was next to Megatron."
"I saw Ironhide." Rumble said.
"So it's either a trick, or someone out there manage to make a communication device out of a coconut." Bumblebee joked.
Torio: Another short chapter. Oh, well.
KiWi: Review and you'll get imaginary… jelly beans.
Torio: KiWi is running out of imaginary candy.
KiWi: Review please.