Title: Strength
Author: Darkfireblade aka Hellsfirescythe
Fandom: G1 Transformers
Rating: G
Characters/Pairings: Spike
Summary: Being human, Spike gets a much different venue of peering into a Cybertronian's personality.
Notes/Warnings: The idea struck me just last night and I managed to write it all down on the way to University of Virginia. Just thinking about how much a handshake could tell you about a person b/c of all the handshakes you give on college visits...

He never really had to worry when it came to Bumblebee. The yellow Bug was much too small to grab Spike in one swipe. Sure there were days when sharp congratulatory slaps on the back stung a bit longer or resulted in a tender back for the rest of the afternoon, but 'Bee was usually quite conscious about his handling of his smaller friend.

Optimus on the other hand handled Spike with extreme paranoid care. It was as if the Autobot leader didn't trust his own strength. There were times when Spike thought he would drop right through Prime's loose grasp. It was ironic really that bruises only came when Prime was feeling nervous. The other bots might not know it when their leader was feeling the pressure, but there were times when Spike definitely could. Then there were the times that it felt as if Prime could take on the whole world, Megatron, and all the Decepticons in one go. When the mech not only exuded confidence, but inspired it in the soul...or spark of anyone rallying towards his cause. It was in those times that Spike felt most secure and confident in his position.

Now Megatron...on the rare unfortunate occasions when the huge silver menace got his hand around Spike, it was the human's turn to be once again reminded of why Megatron was the leader of the Decepticons. That mech was confident beyond belief, his grip sure and firm, but...not painfully so (though Megatron could make it so whenever he felt like it). It reminded him of a vice. Spike could uneasily rest assured that Megatron would not end up accidentally dropping or crushing him.

When it came to Starscream, Spike was actually surprised. The Decepticon seeker seemed at ease when it came to picking up humans. Whether this was because Starscream had made it a habit of picking up humans and was used to it, or because of his exceeding arrogance in things, Spike wasn't sure. But Starscream was surprisingly gentle, maybe unconsciously gentle because there were times when Starscream's grip could be quite painful when he was paying attention to his captive. It was when his attention strayed away to something else that the Aerial Commander's grip shifted into something more comfortable.

Skyfire had the same unconscious grip. The nice one mind you, not Starscream's painful one. It was...strange that these two feuding mechs would have such similar ways of handling humans. Spike asked the huge Autobot scientist about this once and the answer came with a small wistful smile: Him and Starscream were scientists, the knowledge of how to handle creatures of different species was ingrained into them. Skyfire's real grip however was much more different than the impersonal scientific grasp that he and Starscream shared. The large white jet exuded a gentle confidence that transferred itself into anything he did. Despite Skyfire's huge stature and the fact that those hands could crush him with a twitch, Spike was most comfortable when he was literally in Skyfire's hands.

Bumblebee was watchful, but regarded Spike as an equal. Optimus was all too human at times. Megatron was firmly entrenched in his position. Starscream and Skyfire still somewhat shared their distant past.

Being human had its advantages. Some of these advantages just came in the strangest ways.