Disclaimer: I do not own Transformers. I should think that rather obvious with my college-induced poverty and all.

Warnings: Onesided Bee/Sam

AN: And the alternate ending. I hope you enjoyed this story and that you stay tuned for the prequel, In Loco Mortis (In Place of Death). I should start posting in October or November at the latest, and I'm open to suggestions for background pairings. The more unusual, the better.

Fate. Karma. Destiny. Primus.

Bee thinks that these words all mean the same thing. The perpetrator of an unexplainable good or bad occurrence. The invisible hand nudging everything along.

Happenstance. Chance.

Yes, even those. All synonyms for the feeling someone is out there both helping and taunting him. All of it a scripted play with actors who constantly forget their lines, if they ever knew them in the first place. And single and insignificant incidents weaving together into such a complex tapestry as life.

The Allspark ending up on this world, one of the few in this sector to support life, much less the sapient kind. Sam's ancestor finding it, Bumblebee himself on the retrieval team. The pair of them growing so close so quickly. Sam becoming one of them and Soundwave taking him for that very reason. Bee on the edge of death, so near that there was no turning back.

And yet… sometimes, the universe exhales and takes a different route. Primus changes his mind. Fate looks away. Destiny grants mercy. Or perhaps a random speck of dust tips the scales the other way. And what could have been, what had almost been, now never would be.

Everything changes. Or maybe nothing at all. Perhaps something in between.

And he is left dazed and dazzled, pondering what it all means. Wondering where he stands with his friends. With his fellow Autobots. With Sam.

But those green optics are unfathomable, metallic face unreadable. Gazing at him with a thousand nameless things skimming over the surface.

"Where do we go from here, Sam?" Bee asks, stilling as he awaits an answer. Staring at the sunset like it has the answers to all the mysteries if of the universe. And maybe if he begged long enough, it would whisper every secret.

Where do they go?

Just one question when he wants to ask a hundred. Where are they going? When will they get there? What are they becoming?

He knows that Sam doesn't love him, at least not in the same way. Bee understands that now, comprehends it as he didn't before. Death, after all, has a way of putting things in perspective. Still, he can't help but hope. Wish with every single circuit and servo.

But he also cannot stop himself from wondering if it would've been better if he had died. If there weren't even the possibility of that terrible choice. He loves Sam, yes. But he doesn't want this out of pity or guilt. He doesn't want it forced either, for Sam to do it to save him. For Sam to even have an instant of regret or unhappiness. Bee didn't steal Sam's mortality only for him to spend the rest of eternity in slow agony.

He never wants Sam to resent him. To look back and wish things were different.

Bee would die before he'd ever allow that to happen.

"Where do we go?" he repeats then, more to himself than to his companion. Processor troubled and aching. "Where can we go?"

But there is a faint chuckle beside him, an amused and wonderful sound. The spark of life that kept him going through madness.

"Anywhere. Everywhere," Sam says and smiles softly as twilight descends. "Live. We'll just live."


End of Transmission

Ever Hopeful,