Sheer Dumb Luck
By Dreaming of Everything, betaed by mmouse15
Author's Note: Sorry for the wait! I'm a lot busier these days, but I'm adjusting—hopefully future chapters will come faster. There's only two chapters to go, which helps, I think. Also, you should go check out the awesome art Neurquadic drew of the Constructicons for me! There's a link in my profile, or you can find it on her DeviantArt page. Thank you so much, Neurquadic!
Bonecrusher followed Ratchet for three days before the Autobot realized who he was. The mech needed to send a request to open a commlink for the medic to realize that he wanted to talk.
He didn't accept the connection, but he did move out to the desert that night, and waited for the other to show up. It felt.. odd. Because he didn't know Bonecrusher, just his gestalt-mates: he was agreeing to meet an unknown Decepticon, when you got down to it.
And that hadn't stopped him.
He was only waiting for an hour before Bonecrusher appeared, and the two sat in silence for an hour longer before either of them spoke.
"So you're Ratchet."
"Yes..." Of course.
"I wish you—all of you—would stop doing that."
"Oh, don't you start, Autobot—you think I'd be here if I didn't think that I needed to be? Slagging no. But you saved me—which wouldn't matter much except what it means to them. –And then Long Haul and Mixmaster and you might be some bleeding-heart sap taken in by a sob story but I owe you."
"I don't know why I did it," Ratchet said quietly. "Why I'm doing this. I should have reported you—and I would have, so it's not so much overcome with some selfless need to heal my mortal enemies as it was a moment of insanity—"
"Huh. You did scan us. And you match, that helps."
"You're the medic, you tell me."
"You mean I've been influenced—as have you, and your team—by the way my mental patterns fit into yours? That's why we've been so—so obscenely trusting of each other? But—"
"I don't think that it makes much of a difference. It was the start of things—it's more who you are. It helps, but—mostly it was you helping us. Once, we met someone else who matched us, and I think Scrapper built something out of him after I killed him because he was an annoying little traitor. A boring one."
"I suppose I should thank you for not killing me, then." Ratchet mostly sounded dry—although it did occur to him that his life was, quite possibly, in danger.
"Damn straight. ...I guess you're not too bad, for an Autobot. The others like you."
"You know I'm betraying my team, being here. How's your feelings when it comes to the Prime cutting off your head?"
"Can't say I'm not pissy. But he killed Megatron."
"Actually, that was a human."
"—Seriously? Hah! Slagger deserved to be offlined by a little insect."
"Charming. You're more like Long Haul than, say, Hook, aren't you?"
"Yeah. Me and 'Hauler've got a lot in common. Now."
"What's that mean?" Ratchet hedged, getting the sense that most mechs would not be having this conversation with Bonecrusher.
"I wanted to destroy everything. I hated everyone. It was kind of fun. Sometimes. I'm still not the nice one—I'd be tracking your Optimus Prime down right now if it wasn't stupid and if the others were okay with the idea—"
"No, you wouldn't like it, and we owe you. So. I'm still not the nice one, but I can be—not-angry again, now I'm not alone anymore. They like having me there—and it's not just needing it. Me being there makes 'em happy, it's not the bond being good again, entirely—And I don't really hate everything now. This stupid planet is still fragging awful but Scavenger really likes it—he keeps on showing up with weird things to show me—and Scrapper likes the new ideas for designs even if it drives Hook crazy, and Long Haul's as happy as he ever is, And Mixmaster's got new stuff to play with…"
There was a moment of silence.
"So you just came out here to thank me?"
"And to get to know you a little better—y'know, my own impression, that slag. Want to fuck?"
"We haven't really known each other all that long." Mostly, Ratchet was privately amused.
"Like slag—I get memories of you whenever I tie into any of the others. Or all of them. And you started it with Long Haul. And you haven't known any of them all that well."
"So why should I interface with you?"
"Figures you're like some weird mix of Scrapper and Hook— Because I want to. You do too, right? You don't need any more of a reason."
"You're right. I do want it."
Ratchet was pinned a split-second later, Bonecrusher's body heavy on top of him, and Ratchet realized the benefits of an engine place surprisingly close to the surface as it rumbled against him. "Good," Bonecrusher growled. There was nothing subtle about the raw lust in his voice, or the way he shoved a finger at one of Ratchet's interface ports, fumbling around it, before he found his own cable and, unceremonious, clicked it into place, waiting just long enough for Ratchet to complain or protest. Which he didn't.
He was holding back most of the data, waiting, giving Ratchet enough time to complete the circuit before he set it loose, the rush of information—as subtle as a brick to the face—tearing through him, electrifying, overwhelming—Ratchet kept on catching split-second snatches of the other Decepticons looking in, but nothing more—it was more than he could concentrate on.
Bonecrusher dragged his fingers down Ratchet's hand, metal squealing against metal, and the sensation made him thrash hard enough to almost dislodge the cables connecting them, even pinned the way he was. He responded by pulsing his personal field and Bonecrusher moaned into the sand, grip tightening spasmodically. Ratchet couldn't hide the sudden pain, not with the volume of their data exchange, and the painful grasp crushing his hand and wrist lessened, even if Bonecrusher wasn't at all repentant: he turned his attentions to a neck joint, forcing his fingers in and twisting. Ratchet made a helpless noise, scratching at another seam in Bonecrusher's armor and arching up into the touch, pressing against the other mech. His engine was racing, vibrations shuddering through his frame and into Bonecrusher's—they mixed with the heavier, closer vibrations from the Constructicon's engine, singing across taught wires and cables until it was just shy of painful. But mostly, it was agonizingly good—
Ratchet's hands ran over Bonecrusher's shoulder and head, finally slipping his hands into the space between Bonecrusher's body and head, pressing at first delicately and then harder, when he felt the unspoken need for more—the burning desire—come across their temporary bond. It was in the way Bonecrusher pushed down on him, too, hands stopping their own exploration as he was temporarily overcome by the sheer sensation. It made Ratchet's engine rev even harder, and it wasn't all about how he could feel the feedback. He pushed harder, than nipped at a shoulder, engine going so loud that it was almost embarrassing. Bonecrusher liked it, though.
He moved his hands to the medic's lights, pushing around them and growling against the metal of Ratchet's neck and shoulders until the vibrations had him moaning helplessly, squirming in wordless ecstasy. He pushed up against Bonecrusher until his engine was up against Ratchet's spark, the other mech so heavy against him, surrounding him and his hands in-between his armor, trying to figure out how to make the medic scream (Ratchet could hear him thinking it, even over all the lust and desire and—something softer, it was almost—it was almost sweet, even though it was Bonecrusher) as he played with the wires. Ratchet moved his hands again and found a sensor node, brushing against it—teasing—before he pressed against it, hard and firm and loving, and sparks burst across his vision before it went black and he passed out, system overloading, dimly aware that the surge of energy he released pushed Bonecrusher over the edge just after him.
Ratchet roused himself long enough to set up an automatic scan to warn him of anyone approaching, feeling Bonecrusher stir sleepily at the activity—they were still linked, since he couldn't find the energy to disconnect them—and then slipped back into true recharge. At peace.
When Ratchet woke back up, he'd been disconnected from Bonecrusher, who was still there. The rest of the Constructicons were there as well, leaning against each other in a baroque tangle of metal parts, some surfaces silvered with moonlight and others dark, their eyes red points of light in the night.
"What?" he asked, pulling himself upright, unable to figure out what would have brought the six of them out here. Immediately, all eyes flicked to him, and one figure stirred, just slightly. And then they started their transformation.
Ratchet watched, awed, as their forms shifted, interconnected, knotted together, and finally the combiner sat up, dwarfing Ratchet: he was big enough to hold him in his two hands.
It finally occurred to him that gestalts were creations of war, and he felt a sudden spark of fear. Were they going to remove their greatest weakness? Why else would they be combining?
"I am Devastator," announced the giant, voice booming around Ratchet, surrounding him.
So a combiner was an entity unto itself. This one was, at least. "Uh... Hi." Really, it shouldn't have been so surprising: there had been guesses about that, in the papers that had been written—the ones he'd gotten a hold of; there were definitely others, possibly more definite and more accurate, that he'd never seen.
Devastator's hands reached down to surround him, effortless, the touch soft but insistent, ignoring the way Ratchet tried to subtly deflect the gentle contact. Finally he was just picked up bodily, with an embarrassing squawking noise at the mistreatment.
"What are you doing?! Put me down!"
Surprisingly, he was let down, and there was a still moment while he could just stare at the huge mech in front of him, silhouetted against the horizon, backlit by the bright moon. After a minute, one gigantic hand moved to touch him again, and this time Ratchet let him, curiously running fingers over what he could reach. This had to be why he'd seen so many redundant systems in Bonecrusher, so many apparently useless features worked into his design: for the combination. There had to be some kind of modified valve that worked to attach their energon-processing systems—and something beyond that to make sure that none of them ended up with more or less energon than they could handle when they separated again—
He was being picked up again. This time, he let it happen: it wasn't like he was going to be able to change it, certainly not easily. Despite that, he felt—oddly comfortable. On edge, yes, but not panicky, the way you'd expect. If nothing else, Devastator didn't seem to want to hurt him.
Cupped hands—oddly shaped, both of them, and mismatched: clearly, there were limits to the transformation technology—held him against the body of the gestalt. Ratchet could feel an engine beneath him, working maybe a little harder than was normal: probably a side effect of the increased size, he cataloged vaguely. The sensation of the working system next to him was oddly...comforting.
The Constructicons really were wearing off on him. He was turning out to be almost as deviant as they were.
The steady humming increased, vibrating through Ratchet's frame, increasingly intrusive. The sensation was...pleasant.
"Is... Is that on purpose?"
There wasn't an answer, but the rhythm picked up again.
"Devastator. Answer me: Is. That. On. Purpose?"
"Yes," he rumbled, voice dark and low and—not at all intimidating. Despite all this.
Primus. A gestalt, in the combined form, was attempting to interface him. That was intimidating.
He was torn with misgivings, but his hands curled involuntarily at the growing pleasure. One giant finger ran down his back, seemingly in encouragement.
Oh, slag it. Mind made up, Ratchet shoved most of his arm into the mech, feeling around for the right wires.