Disclaimer: I no own Transformers, though I do like occasionally playing God with the toys.
I have no shame, and do not accept responsibility for any brains broken. Fic heavily inspired by two songs, "She Blinded Me With Science" and "Still Alive".
Stand Back, I'm Going To Try Science
Perceptor stood to the side, watching one of the most circular arguments he'd ever seen.
"Pit-slagging Autobot scum!! What do you have to say for yourself!?"
"It was not my fault, you flying lump of rust! The effect was totally out of left field, I have no idea why it did that!"
"You built the fragging thing, you should know how it could blow up!"
"Sometimes it just happens, okay!? It just blew up, no warning, no nothing, just fwoosh!"
"Yes, it blew up, and got us stranded here on an alien planet with all my weapons offline so I can't shoot you slaggers dead where you stand!!"
"I told you, I don't know what happened! Fix everything yourself if you're so great, then!"
"I could if you gave me the schematics!"
"And let you turn it into a weapon to use against us? I'd rather die!"
"I can arrange that!"
"Bring it, you giant metal chicken!"
"Your head will be a trophy on my wall!!"
"And yet, it's still connected to my shoulders."
"Why you--!! Slagging Autobot, this is all your fault!"
And so on and so on. Wheeljack and Starscream were on a roll.
It could be worse, he did admit. The explosion and subsequent thrust through a wormhole had offlined all their weapons, thrusters, and pretty much anything that would have been of use in escaping this planet or just killing each other. So they were left as little more than walking, talking sentient robots.
Starscream, lacking the ability to blow the two Autobots up, had apparently decided to fall back on the only weapon he had left - yelling in his screechy voice. Wheeljack, while not possessing the same level of glass-shattering screeches, was still loud as he yelled right back. Perceptor's audial receptors were slightly ringing.
They had been at it for over two hours.
"Excuse me...?" He started timidly, and nearly flinched back into silence when both turned to glare at him. He forced himself to go on with it, though. "In lieu of expostulating over our current quandary, it might behoove us to attempt to rectify it...?"
Starscream gave the red scientist an odd look as Wheeljack nodded, anger draining away. "You're right, Perceptor, we really should try to find a way off this planet and get back to Earth. Where should we start, though?"
Perceptor hesitated. "Well..."
They turned to look at Starscream, and he glared right back at them. "A list of components, you fools. There were no outside forces for your piece of junk to react with, so it was something inside it that reacted and caused this when it was jostled. Go over the components and find out which ones could cause a spontaneous wormhole to the middle of nowhere!"
Wheeljack paused, before running the list through his head. "Well, um, let's see...there's the flux capacitator, humans have great ideas...that would cause the wormhole effect, but only if it came into direct contact with fluctuating energy...energon to power it, rhiannic ore to--"
"What!?" Both Autobot scientists flinched at the loud screech. The Seeker seemed aghast.
"You really put energon and rhiannic ore into the same device? Are you suicidal or just mad!?"
Wheeljack's optics flickered in confusion. "Why, what's wrong with it? It was the only thing that could contain the energy field..."
Starscream hissed. "How you passed the basic science safety course back on Cybertron, I'll never know. Everyone who knows anything about rhiannic ore knows that you never put it anywhere near energon! Slag, you shouldn't even have it inside your base!"
"Because..." Starscream slowed down his words as if talking to a sparkling. "When energon and rhiannic ore come into contact with each other, it causes an impressive chemical reaction that turns both the ore and the energon into a puddle of highly-corrosive acid."
Both Perceptor and Wheeljack stared up at the Seeker. "It does?"
"Yes, it does. The reaction continues until every bit of energon and ore are completely obliterated, and the acid causes the same type of reaction. If you got even one crystal of ore in your fuel lines, it would turn your entire energy supply into that acid and melt you from the inside-out in a highly-painful death. Why did you not learn this!?"
Both Autobots seemed surprised, and Perceptor looked a little ill.
"I...never was in close proximity to the ore, so I was not instructed on proper requirements..." The red scientist muttered. Wheeljack merely shook his head.
Growling, the Seeker flung his hands up into the air and whirled around, beginning to stalk off across the landscape. After looking at each other, Perceptor and Wheeljack followed.
"Where are you going?"
"To find a way off this rock so I won't be close to you two when you blow yourselves up."
"This...is an unhappy development." Perceptor said as they stared down into the canyon.
After they had learned the reason for why Wheeljack's invention had decided to spontaneously warp the three into deep space - the reaction of the ore and energon was quite enough fluctuating energy to cause the wormhole to appear - they had set off across the landscape, looking for anything that could help them. So far, the planet had been about as worthless as it looked.
They had found a mountain range, and had been picking through it to suddenly come across this canyon. It was the only way through the mountains - the sides were too steep to scale. And what resided in this canyon had caused all three mechs to feel a sinking sensation in their sparks.
They'd thought this planet devoid of life. Obviously it wasn't.
"Living creatures made of rhiannic ore." Starscream stated dryly. "How lovely, I haven't been on the brink of death since last week."
"How are we going to get by?" Wheeljack fretted nervously. "I mean, we don't know how aggressive they are, and the ore's hard enough to be a weapon against us. I don't know about you two, but I'd rather not have my insides melt into acidic goo."
Perceptor had a flicker of an idea. He had no idea if it would work, but it was worth a shot. He stepped in front of the other two, spreading his arms as if to shield them.
"Stand aside, I'm going to attempt to apply scientific theory to affect these organisms in a negative matter!"
Stunned silence for a moment. Starscream was the first to regain his voice.
"...Did he just say 'Stand back, I'm going to try science'?"
"...Esssentially, yes." Wheeljack sounded just as stunned.
Perceptor watched the crystal beings for a moment, before reaching into one arm to pull out a glass vial. He opened a panel on his arm and winced as he dug into a minor fuel line, causing a small leak. He swiftly filled the vial, capped it, then tossed it like a grenade at the nearest cluster of the ore-things.
The result was impressive. The glass shattered on impact with one creature's back, and the acidic reaction proved immediate. There was a high shrieking sound as the creature began to melt at a rather frightening rate. It ran around blindly in pain, brushing up against other creatures and causing the reaction to spread. Soon the entire canyon was full of shrieking, melting creatures like some sort of human zombie-movie.
The three mechs watched in horrified fascination.
"What if this was the only population and we just commited xenocide?" Wheeljack winced as one creature succumbed to the acid and fell over.
"A necessary sacrifice. We are superior beings." Starscream stated with Decepticon arrogance, though his energy signature was flickering a little in disgust. He watched the spectacle for a minute before shuddering. "How disgustingly messy."
Perceptor was merely watching it all with wide optics, his facial expression the one of someone who expected to be purging their fuel tanks in the near future. "Primus, I massacred the entire population!"
Starscream patted him on the shoulder. "It was them or us, you know. You did it for science!"
"For science..." The microscope muttered blankly, optics still glued to the scene in front of him.
Finally, all the creatures seemed to have melted away into oblivion, the acid sinking into the ground and disappearing. The three waited for a while longer, before Starscream deemed it was safe and they began crossing the canyon, looking about them warily.
After a long silence, Wheeljack finally spoke up. "Well, we can...consider this an experiment, right? 'Effects of energon on mineral-based lifeforms'. It wasn't a total waste of life, right?"
"Keep telling yourself that, Autobot."
Perceptor still looked as sick as a Transformer could. He muttered to himself as he stumbled along. "All dead...just wanted to clear an acceptable path...science is a monster..."
A snippet of a human song immediately flashed into Wheeljack's processors. He hesitated, before he decided he really had nothing left to lose and began broadcasting it over his alt-mode's speakers. His sound system was not the equivalent of Jazz's, but it did the job.
"And believe me I am still alive,
I'm doing science and I'm still alive!"
Perceptor wailed as Starscream bent over and laughed helplessly.
Song snippet from Ellen McLain's "Still Alive", ending song to Portal. I love that song. XD The other song inspiration was "She Blinded Me With Science", of course.