Yay!! Jazz is back! I really liked the idea of pairing him and Epps up because they both seem made for each other. To me, they seem like two guys who would bitch and moan about the other for about an hour before ever admitting they were happy with that person. I tried to make it seem that way so hopefully you guys like it. Enjoy!!
A cool, November breeze swept a discarded paper cup across the street as Tech Sergeant Epps walked slowly down the side walk. A small newspaper clipping was shoved in the pocket of his jeans and his intended destination appeared over the next hill.
The ad had been relatively simple and informative without sounding too forced:
"2007 Pontiac Solstice. Recently had work done on exterior along with new paint
job. In very good condition. Please inquire in person."
An address had been typed in the lower right hand corner along with a phone number for questions. When he'd called to ask about a price, a rather flustered young woman had answered the phone and told him that she would be willing to bargain with anything so long as he took the car.
A little confused by the answer but nevertheless interested in the car, Epps had set out early that morning with his wallet, the newspaper clipping and no idea about what he was about to get himself into.
The apartment complex was in definite need of a paint job but far from the run down houses that lined the streets in this neighborhood. Reading the apartment numbers, Epps managed to navigate his way to one in the corner of a crumbled parking lot. The garage door was open and sitting right outside the door in plain sight, a beautiful silver car gleamed in the fall sun.
Epps whistled softly when he saw the car, his fingers twitching slightly as he ran a hand over the hood. "Damn…this is a nice car right here…" he said more to himself than anyone else.
"Thanks. It took a while to get him that way." A distinctly female voice said from inside the garage.
Looking over, Epps recognized the young woman to be Mikaela Banes, the very same that had helped he and his team take down a rather nasty mechanical enemy a few months back.
"Hey Epps." Mikaela said, walking over and smiling amiably at the man.
"Hey there, girlie. How ya been?" The tech sergeant asked, smiling back.
"Eh, so so." The girl answered, wiping her hands on the front of her jeans. "You came to look at the car?"
Temporarily sidetracked by the sight of a large white pickup in the garage that seemed to be watching the two (three) intently, Epps stumbled over an answer after a second.
"Uh yeah. Why you trying to get rid of it? Seems like a pretty sweet car to me."
"Ugh." Mikaela groaned in response. "He talks non-stop. Day in and day out. This is the first time he's been quiet all day."
""Talks?"" Epps asked incredulously, raising an eyebrow and looking at the silent car. "What do you mean it "talks?" And why are you calling it a "he"?"
Mikaela looked confused for a second before looking at the car. "This was one of the autobots that fought with us back in Dodge City." She answered, waiting for the recognition on the sergeant's face.
She didn't need to wait long. Epps eyes widened and he looked at the car in disbelief. "You serious?!" he almost shouted, memories flooding his mind all over again.
The young woman nodded and handed him the keys. "You can take him for a test drive if you want. I'd be careful though; he hasn't liked any of the other drivers so far."
Epps took the keys and opened the door slowly, sitting in the seat and waiting as if expecting the car to throw him out at any minute. When everything stayed the same, he gently closed the door and fastened his seatbelt.
"Just be careful with him." Mikaela added from outside. "He's still a little sore and angry about what happened."
Nodding in acknowledgment, the tech sergeant shifted the car into reverse and slowly backed out of the driveway. He turned onto the main street carefully and accelerated slightly, impressed by how easily the car maneuvered. The ride was remarkably smooth, gentle and most of all quiet.
"Angry…shit. I'd kick his metal ass all over again if I got the chance." A deep voice grumbled from the radio.
Although slightly startled, Epps wasn't too shocked and managed to keep his eyes on the road. "Ah, come on man. It's not that bad." He said, trying to placate the irritated car.
"Not that bad?" Jazz shot back, his voice dripping with sarcasm. "Don't try to pull that Dr. Phil (1) bullshit on me, man. You don't know what the hell you're talking about."
"You're pissed because Megatron beat the crap outta you." Epps answered logically, turning the steering wheel gently.
The steering wheel suddenly jerked out of his grasp and the car screeched around the corner. "That bastard got a lucky punch in. That's it!" Jazz snapped, his voice sharp and cold.
Laughing softly, Epps regained control of the wheel and focused straight ahead. "Damn, you're worse than a woman with PMS."
"Yeah? When's the last time you were touched by a woman, huh?" the car retorted sharply.
Epps stiffened a little at the comment. "I've been married for 5 years and have two daughters, you smartass."
"Oh, good cover."
Rolling his eyes at the comment, Epps glared out the window. "Oh, and this coming from something that's little more than a go cart with a better engine? Very impressive."
"Go cart?! I've been around longer than your entire planet!" Jazz snapped icily.
"Really? Well I played with Hot Wheels that looked better than you." Epps fired back without missing a beat.
The steering wheel jerked again but the tech sergeant gripped it tightly and kept it straight. "You gunna throw a fit now?" he asked, pushing down on the brake at a stop sign.
Jazz laughed humorlessly. "I've known dead animals that have more common sense than you." He growled, pulling the accelerator toward the floor so they sped through the intersection.
After narrowly avoiding a collision with a kid on a bike, Epps jerked the wheel free and held it in a death grip. "You trying to kill someone?!" he snarled at the car.
"No!" Jazz snarled back. "But I'm not going to have a driver as idiotic and ignorant as you!"
"Yeah?! Well I don't think I want a car that throws a temper tantrum like a spoiled little kid!"
A tense, angry silence fell between the two as they stopped at another stop sign. More insults were being prepared when an old woman driving a Mazda sped through the intersection and almost collided into them.
Epps went to honk the horn but found Jazz had already beaten him to it.
"GET THE HELL OFF THE ROAD!" Both car and driver shouted in unison.
The old woman simply gave them a passing glance and kept her initial speed as she drove down the road behind them.
Epps growled low in his throat, his hand gripping the steering wheel tightly. "Man, people like that piss me off." He muttered.
"Yeah, me too."(2) Jazz grumbled, steering the car back in the direction of Mikaela's house. The ride back was tense and silent but they managed to arrive at the apartment complex in one piece.
Epps stepped out of the car and noticed Mikaela walking up.
"So, how was it?" She asked hopefully as she approached.
"It went…better than expected." Epps answered carefully, glancing at the car from the corner of his eye.
"He'll do." Jazz muttered, nudging Epps with the door.
Mikaela smirked knowingly and held her hand out for the keys. "Unless you'd like to hold onto him for a little while." She added innocently when the sergeant hesitated.
Epps shrugged carelessly. "Might as well. I think I can put up with his talking for a few days."
The girl grinned and patted the hood gently. "Glad you think so. You're the only one he's actually brought back to the house. Most of the time, he'd leave them on a corner somewhere and drive back by himself. Seems like you made quite an impression."
Feeling a little more confident, Epps smirked and pulled out his wallet. "How much do you want for him?"
Mikaela chewed her bottom lip for a second, thinking about the price. "Hmm… I guess I'll part with him for $50."
Epps was vaguely aware that his jaw dropped without his consent. "$50?! Are you out of your mind?! It's worth five times this much easy!!"
"$50?! Are you kidding me?! I'm worth more than that!!" Jazz cried indignantly.
The young woman ignored the ranting car and simply shrugged. "I know. But there's no reason I should charge you that much. And I refuse to take more than that for him." Behind her, the big white truck chuckled softly.
Hesitantly, the tech sergeant reached into his wallet and pulled out a $50 bill. "You're sure?" he asked.
Nodding slowly, Epps pushed a $50 in the girl's palm, along with two $100 bills as well.
Mikaela noticed the money and shook her head. "I said-"
"Yeah, I know. But that's for having to put up with him till I got here." Epps said, smirking and tucking his wallet back in his pocket.
"I heard that you bastard." Jazz snapped from behind.
"Yeah, yeah." The sergeant muttered back, rolling his eyes. Turning back to Mikaela, he gave her a quick hug, thanking her once again for the car.
"Alright, alright. Enough touchy-feely shit." Jazz groaned, opening the driver side door. "Get in."
Epps obeyed, taking great care to ignore the car's comments. Mikaela smiled as she watched them back out, noticing Ratchet was watching too.
Waving goodbye one last time, Tech Sergeant Epps and Second in Command Jazz drove off for home.
So?? What did you think? Hope you liked it!!
(1)Since they were able to download all of their information from the internet, I'm almost certain Jazz knows who Dr. Phil is. Freakin everybody does.
(2)Not that Jazz really knows all that much about other people driving but I thought it was cute that they agreed on something.