Difficult Things: Absolutely Not In Love
By Dreaming of Everything
I do not own Transformers in any way, shape or form.
This pairing blindsided me, and I decided to write it—which is slightly odd, as I haven't really felt an urge to write pairingfic for Transformers before. As an experiment, with this story I'm going to try to keep the chapters short, but update regularly—or at least more regularly than I do with my other stories.
The story is set in G1. Any explicit scenes will be cut from the ffdotnet version of this fic: full chapters will be posted to my LJ (dream-it-all . livejournal . com). I'll also warn in individual chapters if something's been changed, and post links to specific chapters in my profile. Why go to all that bother? Because I don't want to get banned.
Many thanks to my beta, mmouse15!
I hope you enjoy the story!
Hound hadn't realized that Sunstreaker had been watching him until Bumblebee had—indirectly—broached the subject, which was somewhat embarrassing. After all, he was supposed to be the best tracker the Autobots had. It was his job to notice things—more than that, his main purpose on the team.
To be fair, though, the entire idea was so ridiculous that Hound could probably be excused on the grounds that nobody in their right minds would think that Sunstreaker—of all mechs—would develop a fascination with him.
It was also kind of unnerving.
Sunstreaker couldn't remember when, exactly, he'd started spending time with Hound on a regular basis—or at least kind of regular.
It scared the slag out of him. Or at least that was how Sides had put it. Sunstreaker himself was of the opinion that nothing scared him, let alone behaviors he wouldn't admit to having in the first place, even to his twin. Let alone to himself.
And there was no reason why he kept on sitting near the mech, if not at the same table, when there were breaks. Or why he enjoyed it when they were on-duty together. Or why he found himself wondering what Hound was doing during his off-duty hours, or when it had been a while since he'd seen him.
There wasn't anything particularly interesting about the mech, after all. He certainly wasn't attractive. If anything, he was the opposite—his build was stocky, he was an unattractive shade
of green, rough features, often fairly dusty, clearly built first and foremost for function, with form playing second fiddle, if it had been considered at all.
Then, Hound wasn't a particularly good conversationalist—not that Sunstreaker was interested in conversation. And he had some perverted obsession with the organic-infested backwater planet they'd ended up on. The most that could be said about him was that he was easy-going and friendly, to everyone.
Who'd started spending time with him. Starting a while ago. Sunstreaker wasn't sure when—it was just something that had happened. He could see being drawn to, for example, Optimus Prime—well, not Sunstreaker himself, but if he was somebody else, and the mech was a good leader, sometimes—who had the sort of magnetic personality that caused that kind of thing, or slag, even with Jazz, who was charismatic if nothing else, but Hound? It was ridiculous!
His brother certainly thought so.
Sunstreaker thought so too. But that hadn't stopped anything.
And it could have been worse. Maybe.
Yeah, it could be worse. It could be a minibot, or, or Tracks—
But that was moving away from ridiculous and into outright unimaginable.
He still didn't know why. Why—why anything, really. Why he'd ended up fixating on Hound of all people, why he'd ended up with this… fascination at all. Why he couldn't just let it all go and move on. Why he hadn't just solved the matter by provoking Hound into a fight and hitting him until everything got back to normal. Or something like that.
So Sunstreaker had been watching him, obviously enough that Bumblebee had noticed it. Or not 'noticed' it, but thought it was obvious or important enough to bring up with Hound himself—he was special ops, after all, even if most people didn't seem to remember that. Hound did know that Bumblebee was distinctly on edge around Sunstreaker, although, in general, he was one of the best-natured Autobots they had, which might have something to do with the situation—it was entirely possible that it wasn't a positive sort of attention (for a given value of 'positive') and instead some long, drawn-out plan for revenge for some slight or another. Hound couldn't think of any sort of event that would cause that sort of reaction, but that didn't mean that Sunstreaker couldn't.
Really, he wondered why he'd ended up the focus of Sunstreaker's attention at all. He wasn't the best-looking mech on the Ark, far from it, and he was friendly, but that… Didn't mean much to Sunstreaker. To his brother, maybe, but even that was doubtful. They had very little in common.
To start with, Sunstreaker was clear about his feelings toward their current home planet, and they were very different from Hound's own. To say the least.
He'd just kind of… Inserted himself into Hound's life. Not an involved presence—he barely spoke to Hound, let alone deigned to have a conversation—but one that was there surprisingly often.
Actually, how rarely they actually interacted, instead of being within proximity of each other, was probably part of the reason it had taken Hound so long to realize what was happening.
Of course, now he'd been tipped off to the situation and realized what was going on, he was hyperaware of the situation, and Sunstreaker's presence. It was making him twitchy and distracted.
With a bit of luck, one of the officers—which translated to Red Alert (always paranoid, even if he was effective) or Prowl, or maybe Jazz, because it was an inter-personal matter, which he seemed to keep an eye on—would switch them off of their current shared shift, a routine patrol Sunstreaker had almost definitely been assigned to. Hound had asked for the assignment; he could hardly ask for another change now.
Sunstreaker complained vociferously about the job, though. Maybe he'd ask to be reassigned. Although that seemed unlikely, seeing as he was just short of shadowing him.
But that was all peripheral issues. What Hound kept on coming back to, unable to come up with a halfway-reasonable answer or any explanation whatsoever, was why.
"You're in a mood," said Sideswipe archly from where he was sprawled on their recharge pad, fiddling with some gadget or something.
His brother growled wordlessly.
"C'mon, Sunshine, I'm not even being annoying. …Yet. But I can be, if you're gonna be like that—seriously, bro, it'll be easier for you and probably less painful for me if you just talk to me now."
Sunstreaker started pacing, but he also started talking, so Sideswipe let it go.
"Primus. I don't know. Hound—"
"Oh slag it, Sunny, are you still on about this? You—"
"You just interrupted me back, so we're even. You need to—"
"It doesn't count if I was interrupting you after you interrupted me."
"Yes, it does—"
"Yes, and stop trying to distract me. You need to just let go of your weird hang-ups and admit that whatever it is you've got for him, you've got it. And you probably have a reason, because whatever they say about you, I know different—you don't go for pointless hook-ups often. …And he's not your type, is he?"
"No, he's not! He's ugly."
"He's not that bad. He'd be almost up to my standards if he wasn't so dusty so often."
"You have standards?"
"Ouch, Sunshine, you sure know how to hurt a guy. Seriously, though, 'fess up. Just… Talk about Hound for a while, 'kay? Out loud. Describe him to me."
Sunstreaker looked at his brother with a jaundiced eye. "You already know Hound."
"Just humor me, bro. Pretend I don't."
"Frag it, Sides—"
"He's—ugly. Heavy build, uninspired green color, usually dusty and never really sparkling, plain face: it suits the rest of him." He stopped abruptly, both in his speech and in his pacing, then started again.
"Tracking specialist—which is kind of boring. And good with holograms—you'd think something so visual would translate to a more attractive form. Or at least improved hygiene. Uh—Most of the Ark seems to like him. I don't know why, but they do. He's friends with Trailbreaker, Bumblebee, Inferno I guess, Bluestreak for some reason, but gets along with everyone, even if it's not really a friendship. He—puts up with me.
"Not all that smart—certainly not Perceptor, or slag, even Ratchet. But not stupid, I guess, because he's a good tracker if nothing else. He's got this obsession with this stupid back-water pit of a planet, though, so clearly there's something wrong with him. He thinks it's all
'fascinating.'" Sunstreaker's tone was drawn out and mocking for the last word; he was clearly agitated. "Loves all the slagging vegetation and the miserable bundles of carbon that crawl around—and he's not even all obsessed with the humans like Bumblebee or that egoist Tracks, no, it's the non-sentient squishy organics, which is pointless—But it's been years and he's still stuck on them, I swear it's getting worse—"
He broke off again, but Sideswipe stayed silent. Sunstreaker shot him a dirty look, then continued. "He's started spending time with the scientists, because of it all—Perceptor, Skyfire and Beachcomber. He doesn't spend much time at the Ark though—not anymore than he has to. He's always going off into the woods to poke at primitive carbon constructs. We have a shift assignment together—he asked for it. I was assigned when Prowl got pissy one day."
"To be fair, you having an away shift makes things easier."
"Don't interrupt me."
"Oh, you want to talk more? Go on ahead—"
"Okay, then. As I was saying, you having an away shift is a good thing, if you ask me, because it gets you away from the ark, lets tempers cool a little, and even you can't get Hound riled up all that easily—Hey, maybe that's why you like him!"
"I do not 'like' him, he's just as stupid as every other 'bot on this ship and uglier than any mech that's not a minibot, I just—Just—"
"Actually do like him?" Sideswipe finished for him, clearly amused.
"Ohhh, you had to think about that one—"
"Just give it up!"
"Fine, fine, I will. …For now."
"To go find Hound? No, no, wait, don't attack me! If you get in another fight this week, even if it's with me, Prowl's going to get your aft in the brig before you can blink—"
Sunstreaker didn't bother responding this time, just stomping out of the room.
When he did run into Hound, it was entirely a coincidence.
--End chapter 1--