Disclaimer: I don't own Transformers or any of the characters, Hasbro & Paramount Pictures does.
This was just something that popped into my head when I saw the movie in the theaters. Just how did Optimus Prime and the other Autobots feel about leaving Bumblebee, the closest thing they have ever had to a little brother, behind? Protocol only goes so far, even for a commander.
I'm not very familiar with the series, so please be gentle. What I know is either from the movie or from quick, random reading. This is a five-part series, I think, but constructive criticism is welcome. I will probably pay the closest attention to Jazz & Optimus Prime since they seem to be the closest to Bumblebee throughout the film. Thank you and please enjoy reading.
Sparkling - Newborn
Youngling - Child
Italics - Thoughts
Breem - 8.3 Earth minutes
Joor - About 6.5 Earth hours
Orn - About 13 Earth days
Vorn - About 83 Earth years
Little Brother - Chapter I - Jazz
The deafening silence that hung over the rolling brigade of eye-catching, rumbling cars was nearly suffocating. Blistering desert stretched for endless miles around them and the scorching heat beating down on their metallic bodies did little to calm their frazzled nerves and ominous moods. Their having gained possession of the encoding on Captain Archibald Witwicky's glasses clearly did not make up for the loss that they had just suffered at the hands of the humans.
A silver/gray hardtop Pontiac Solstice remained at the back of the group. Jazz drove at a much slower pace than the others, anger and grief radiating off of him in thick waves. He did not expect the other Autobots to comment on his behavior because of the circumstances; but even if they had, he would not have listened. He was too upset to care, quite frankly.
Jazz was positive that if any of his fellow Autobots were to see him now they would probably barely recognize him. Oh, he looked the same on the outside as he had for hundreds of vorns, but on the inside he was a mess. His mind was a jumbled mixture of anger, frustration, confusion, grief, and heart-breaking anguish. Jazz was usually a very laid-back, good-natured mech that liked to have a good time. But, right now, Jazz felt like beating the slag out of the nearest boulder. Never mind, scratch that, he felt like ripping the head off of the next Decepticon who was foolish enough to cross his red-hazed path.
He'd make them pay.
Jazz glowered, his engine revving unnaturally loud. He'd make sure that they died slow, painful deaths. They didn't deserve the honor of a proper burial. Not after all they had done to both him and his fellow Autobots. The Decepticons were the reason Optimus, Ironhide, Ratchet, Bumblebee, and Jazz were on this strange planet to begin with.
I swear, when I find ya Megatron I will make ya wish ya'd never been created! he thought furiously.
Personally, Jazz found Earth and her creatures to be a fascinating discovery that he would remember for many vorns. The diverse cultures of Earth's people was among some of the most intriguing Jazz had ever seen and he would have liked nothing more than to kick back on a quiet country hill and browse the World Wide Web. Jazz was like the little reptile that humans called a chameleon. Like the chameleon, Jazz could adapt to almost any environment he was placed in and often learned the ways of a planet's people with minimal effort, unlike his fellow Autobot Ironhide.
Poor ol' trigger-happy lugnut.
But, then again, Jazz was a one of a kind and had been designed specifically by his creator to blend in with his surroundings.
Jazz had been thoroughly amused to see the surprise on the human children's faces when he had first introduced himself.
"What's crackin' little bitches?" he had said. And, "This looks like a cool place to kick it!"
The look on Samuel Witwicky's and Mikaela Banes's faces had been priceless.
What an interesting planet Earth was.
Nevertheless, despite the fact that most knew of him because of his love for the stylish and the flashy, what really made Jazz famous was his ability to keep a cool head in a tight situation.
He wasn't the head of Special Operations for nothing.
If there was a dangerous mission to be had, First-Lieutenant Jazz was the first mech Optimus Prime turned too for assistance. Not once in the thousands of vorns that they had worked together had Jazz disappointed him. Despite his small size, Jazz was a lethal wrecking machine whose quick mind, acrobatic fighting style, and calm approach towards every situation allowed him to take down Decepticons easily five-times his size. Most of the time they didn't know what hit them until it was too late. Of course, by then, heads were rolling. Literally.
Primus, Jazz loved Earth slang.
Jazz always got the job done, but not without adding a hint of style to it, of course. In Jazz's mind, there was no such thing as a Mission Impossible. If Optimus needed to get something done, Jazz would do everything in his power to get it done, one way or another.
Then again, none of those previous tight situations had involved a certain little yellow minibot that seemed to win the hearts of everyone around him, be they Autobot or alien alike.
Bumblebee was the youngest of all Autobots.
The last of the younglings.
Jazz had even heard rumors that Bumblebee was the last of their kind created, shortly before the fall of Cybertron and under Optimus Prime's careful supervision. Whether this was true or not, he wasn't quite sure, but Jazz did know for a fact that Bumblebee was much younger than any other mech he had met in many, many vorns. He also seemed to hold a special place in Optimus's spark when compared to the other Autobots. Jazz wasn't complaining of course, because he was as guilty as Optimus when it came to babying the little bot. Bumblebee was the equivalent to what the humans on Earth called a pre-teen or adolescent.
Very young and, at times, very naïve.
Of course, Bumblebee's youth and naivety only seemed to fuel Jazz and his fellow older mechs tendency to be overprotective afts whenever they were assigned to a mission with the little bot. Jazz had been more than just a little outraged when he had heard that their "little brother" was following Megatron and the All-Spark to some unknown planet on his own. He'd just recovered from having the slag beaten out of him by the brute, for Primus's sake! He couldn't even speak anymore!
They're sending a youngling to track down the Cube!?!? Jazz had thought. Has Prime's processor gone on the fritz!?
Outraged for a reason he couldn't quite place at the time, Jazz had stomped his way from the rec room to Prime's conference room and had proceeded to tell him and the others what he thought of Bumblebee's mission. Optimus and Prowl had been more than a little surprised at the vehemence behind Jazz's words.
"He's not ready!" Jazz had argued. "He's barely recovered! Ya can't expect 'im to follow tha' slaggin'..."
"Jazz…" Prowl had growled, fixing the Special Operations agent with a warning glare.
Ignoring the larger mech, Jazz had then turned his burning optics towards his CMO who was standing across the room, daring him to argue otherwise, "Ratchet?"
However, Ratchet never got the chance to respond because Optimus soon silenced them all with a stern wave of his hand.
"You've always trusted in Bumblebee's skills before," Optimus Prime had stated, "Even commended them when others expressed doubt. Why question him now?"
The question had shocked Jazz into silence.
Why am I so upset? Jazz had thought.
He had been so shocked by both the question and the revelation that he didn't know why he was so distressed by Bumblebee's new mission that Jazz did something that he had not done in thousands of vorns.
Jazz, the infamous master of coolness and calm, lost control and blew a fragging gasket. Or, at least, that's how Sunny and Sides had described his little bout of madness.
To make a long story short, Jazz had ended up in the brig after that little tantrum.
Prowl had threatened to throw him overboard and deactivate him if he ever threw something big and hard and sharp at him or Prime ever again. What could he say, he was an overprotective "big brother" and a Pit-fragging aft when he wanted to be, which wasn't very often. The look on Sunny's and Sides's faces as he was being hauled down to the brig was priceless. Apparently, his thrashing legs had caused quite a bit of destruction when turning the corner near the mess hall.
As Jazz always said, if you're going to do something, then do it with style or don't bother doing it at all.
Even the twins, who were notorious for harassing minibots, were protective and, some might even say, compassionate towards the smaller bot. Jazz himself had not had the greatest of experiences with minibots prior to his first meeting with Bumblebee. They all seemed to be so…sullen and self-absorbed. Cliffjumper and Gears annoyed the frag out of him and Huffer could at times be even more anti-social and pessimistic than Sunstreaker, and that's saying a Pit of a lot.
But Bumblebee was different.
Jazz had been lying down on the hard panel-like bed in his cell that night when he had heard a quiet tapping through the glowing beams of energy of his cell.
Sitting up abruptly and straining to see through the beams, Jazz whispered in surprise, "Bee?"
The yellow minibot had clapped his hands together in applause and played a quiet sound byte of approval.
"What're ya doin' down 'ere?" Jazz had demanded, worried that the little bot would get into trouble.
Bumblebee's optic ridges furrowed in concentration for a moment before another sound byte played, the words indicating that he was worried about Jazz.
"Do Prime or Prowl know ya're here?"
A feigned look of innocence came over Bumblebee's face and he played a little whistling tune. The epitome of little brotherly innocence. What a chip off the ol' block, as humans would say.
"Ya bribed Blue again, didn't ya?" Jazz deadpanned, a proud smirk lying barely concealed beneath his seemingly stern tone.
Baby blue optics gazed back at him mischievously, laughter dancing within them as he tried to contain his excitement at the pride he heard in Jazz's voice.
"I knew I shouldn't've given ya those chips," groaned Jazz.
Last time Jazz had gone on a mission to a heavily populated planet near one of the Decepticon's bases he had bought a huge number of interesting game-like chips at one of the nonaligned markets. More than he could carry actually, and he had needed the assistance of a rather reluctant Mirage, bless his spark. He'd given most of the chips to Bumblebee, Hound, Fireflight, and Bluestreak since they were all so fond of other world's cultures and entertainment systems. The three had been exchanging them off and on for quite some time now and he was sure that Bumblebee had used one of the game chips to persuade the talkative mech to let him into the brig without Prowl's or Prime's permission.
"Prowl'll 'ave my skidplate if he finds out ya snuck down 'ere after ya're shift, Bee," Jazz had grumbled.
Bumblebee looked unfazed as he glanced at the other cells curiously. See, this was why Jazz didn't want the youngling going to that unknown planet alone. Way too curious and naïve. Jazz knew that his nerves would be frazzled the entire time Bumblebee was on his mission. He'd constantly be scared that...
And it was at that moment that Jazz finally realized why he was so upset over the mission that Bumblebee had volunteered too.
Jazz was scared, truly scared.
Despite the hundreds of life-threatening, dangerous missions that he himself had been sent on, Jazz had never truly felt fear. He had resigned himself a long time ago to the fact that he would more than likely die on a mission. It had simply become a part of his normal, every orn life. He was a soldier. Death and soldiers lived hand in hand. That was just the way it was, and Jazz had accepted this.
But, for the first time in hundreds of vorns, Jazz was scared for someone other than himself. True, he had felt worry over the well-being of his fellow Autobots, but they were experienced warriors and knew very well how to take care of themselves. Although they were close, they had all learned to detach themselves from death on missions.
But Bumblebee was a different story altogether.
Bumblebee had somehow managed to wriggle his way into his spark, much like he had to Optimus Prime and nearly every other Autobot he knew. Jazz had simply passed the feeling of protectiveness off as a side effect of Bumblebee being a youngling. There were so few of them left that just about everyone felt the need to keep an extra optic on the mischievous little bot.
Jazz had spoken with Sideswipe once before about the feelings that siblings had towards one another, since siblings were now so rare among Cybertronians these past few thousand vorns. Every feeling and emotion that Sides described fit in perfectly with how Jazz felt towards Bumblebee. He hadn't wanted to believe it at the time, but at that moment down in the brig with Bumblebee standing across from him in all of his youthful innocence, Jazz realized that he would never come closer to having a little brother than Bee.
"Ya're such a pain in th'aft," Jazz had groaned, causing the little bot to look at him with confusion, "Ya know that?"
Bumblebee merely tilted his head to the side, not quite understanding what Jazz was getting at. He made his confusion known with another sound byte. Primus, Jazz was glad he had taken the time to teach the youngling how to use sound bytes to communicate while he was in the medbay a few orns ago.
"I don't like the thought o' ya goin' after Megatron on ya own, Bee," Jazz had admitted. Bumblebee had frowned at this, his internal systems revving quietly in obvious indignation. "It ain't tha' I don't believe in ya, Bee, it's jus'…"
Bumblebee had tilted his head once again, looking at the older mech whom he admired so much, waiting patiently and hoping for his approval.
"Ya're the closest thing I've ever 'ad to a little brother," Jazz had finished, feeling as if a huge weight had been lifted off his shoulders with this revelation and declaration.
The cheerful sounds of Bumblebee's sound bytes echoed throughout the brig and Jazz groaned in exasperation when he heard the loud booming of Prowl's footfalls down the corridor. "Nice goin', Bee," he had scolded, "Ya jus' can't be quiet fo' more than a breem, can ya?"
In spite of this, the happy noises and jovial baby blue optics that gazed back him instantly told him that Bumblebee felt the same brotherly feelings that he himself had hidden for many vorns.
As Prowl rounded the corner and the door swished open, Jazz quietly whispered, for only his and Bumblebee's audios, "I love ya, little brother."
Baby blue optics danced happily with excitement and joy, silently replying, "I love you too, big brother."
Bumblebee was sent to Earth three orns later.
The pride that Jazz felt for the little minibot increased ten-fold when he saw the yellow mech standing proudly in that alleyway, his optics shining with a sense of great accomplishment while two small human children, Samuel Witwicky and Mikaela Banes he soon learned, crouched amidst his feet. His big brotherly instincts soon took over and Jazz did a quick once over of the minibot's external and internal conditions. Jazz had barely been able to repress a sigh of frustration when he learned from Ratchet that Bumblebee's voice still had not gotten any better.
Megatron, ya Pit-slagging second-hand scrap heap of a fraggin' rustin' piece of Pit-spawn rejected microchip, he had thought furiously whilst giving his little brother a hearty pat on the back.
Primus, he had missed the little bot. Sunny and Sides would never let him live it down if they ever found out he was becoming such a pansy, as the humans would say.
Everything had been going so well for them and his little brother until that fragging Sector 7 had gotten involved. His spark had nearly burst with pride when Bumblebee lubricated on that obnoxious little human. Of course, that euphoria hadn't lasted very long.
The sound of his little brother's pain-filled screams had torn at Jazz's spark. Jazz would not have been surprised if his blue optics had burned blood red when he first heard those muted screams. It had taken every ounce of willpower he possessed to stop himself from jumping down from that bridge and beating the Pit out of those fragging humans. Jazz knew they were not to harm humans because that would have made them no better than those Pit-fragging Decepticons. But, by Primus, the sound of Bumblebee's muted cries for help had nearly made him lose it. If Prime hadn't have stopped him when he did, well, Jazz knew that Bumblebee and the kids would probably be with them right now, not with that slagging Sector 7.
Jazz was usually a pretty cool mech, and very stylish and sleek if he didn't say so himself; but when someone messed with his comrades, especially a certain little yellow one, then they had better watch out because he would track them down and turn them so many ways inside out that not even Ratchet and Wheeljack would be able to put them back together.
Now, it seemed, his worst fears had been realized and his adopted little brother had been stolen from him. He was angry. Perhaps angrier than he had ever been before in his long life. He was angry at Megatron for splitting their world in two and destroying everything that he had ever loved. He was angry at the Decepticons for following that Pit-fragging Megatron and making their lives so much more difficult and heart-breaking than they ever needed to be. He was angry at Prime for not trying to save their little brother and for giving up on him. He was angry at Bumblebee for volunteering to go on such a dangerous mission and for being so fragging heroic. But, most of all, he was angry at himself. He could have done more. He could have taken one of the children himself and then Prime would not have dropped the girl and then Bumblebee would not have been forced into a slagging ambush. He could have distracted the humans and drawn their attention away from the Camaro. He was fast and could have easily out-maneuvered the slower human vehicles. He could have saved his little brother.
But he didn't, and Jazz knew such a mistake would haunt him for the rest of his life. Never did he think that losing the little yellow minibot would hurt so much. But it did and Jazz wondered if his spark would survive such a deep and terrifying loss.
His attempts to hide the quiet sputtering of his engine were futile and he simply slowed down even more so than before. Jazz quickly sprayed windshield fluid, trying to silently convince himself that he was simply cleaning a spot of bird crap or crashed bug guts from his clear glass windshield…
Another mighty rev of his engine and Jazz knew he was crying in the only way his kind could and frankly, at this point, he didn't care if the others saw or not. They were too wrapped up in their own thoughts to notice anything short of a huge explosion anyways.
Every sun-scorched mile was like a silent, brooding torture. His thoughts grew darker the further he drove and the vain hope that he had been clinging too for the past few hours slowly began to dwindle away.
Jazz kept trying to remind himself that maybe, just maybe, those two human kids would pull off some sort of miracle and rescue his little brother. That tiny glimmer of hope was the only thing that was stopping Jazz from hitting the brakes and turning around to race back to the Hoover Dam to give those humans a piece of his processor.
Jazz's engine sputtered one more time, his spark twisting painfully with anguish as he furiously thought, I've had it!
It was at that moment, just as they were driving between two massive boulders that had been eroded thousands of years ago when the now parched desert had been an ocean, that Jazz decided that he needed to do something. If Prime was not going to help their little comrade, then he would. After all, what kind of big brother would he be if he didn't save his little brother's aft every once in a while.
Stay tough, Bee, Jazz thought, I'm comin' to get ya whether the chief likes it or not!