A/N: This is slightly cracky and not to be taken too seriously.
As these are Movie seekers, I'm giving them authentic camo designs. See the end of the story for the thanks and acknowledgements.
Thirteen or so years later, Nellis Air Force Base.
"Where is she?" fretted the groom, looking at his watch.
"It's okay, she promised she'd be here." said Will. "It's a woman's prerogative to be late. What worries me, is where the pastor is."
"Well, I've received notice that Annabelle is almost ready and will be here very soon." said the large Arctic-camo-blue Seeker. Will recalled his name was Thundercracker. He was standing at the back of the airfield with Optimus, Ironhide, Bumblebee, Ratchet, Barricade, and another Seeker, this one black and green camo-patterned, whom Will thought was called Skywarp.
The Cybertronians had already been mobbed by the Press, who were out in force, wanting to see the wedding of one of 'The Children Who Ended The War' as one paper melodramatically headlined.
The ceasefire that had started as a two-week temporary event had been lengthened, lengthened again, and then again, and in the end both groups of Cybertronians and the American Government had decided to sit down at the negotiation tables and talk, so they would all know what was going on and could find out where they stood. Ratchet and some human negotiators had sat in, to help if they could, and slowly a truce had been agreed between the three parties, a truce that was finally drawn up into a treaty.
The Decepticons and Autobots had quickly become known to the Press and public, and strangely enough, once the Decepticons willingness to talk peace was revealed, the public's sympathies swung towards the Decepticons as well as the Autobots. Public sympathy to the Autobots was expected, but the public's positive response to the Decepticons came as a surprise. In the end, the rights that had already been drawn up to cover the Autobots had to be extended to cover the Decepticons too, and not only at the Autobots' insistence, but at the public's.
The Cybertronians were generally accorded all the rights of foreigners living on American soil, and for simplicity's sake, rather than draw up a new set of definitions and titles, the two faction leaders were considered heads of two foreign nations. Their Bases served as embassies, and many of the senior Autobots and Decepticons were considered as diplomats and important personages, and accorded the perks that came with such privileges.
For a start, along with the work they promised to do for the humans, it eased the fuel crisis. Some of that work involved working with humans to find a new source of energy, and in that the Cybertronians were way ahead of the humans. To date, the Autobots and Decepticons had helped develop technology that made the fuel burn completely with no waste, which solved fuel efficiency and pollution in one go, helped them develop technology to scoop greenhouse gases out of the atmosphere and convert them into useable fuel. They were currently helping the humans to use their waste products in a similar manner: landfill sites were now being seen as potential power-generators.
"Where is that bloody pastor?" fumed Will after a few more minutes had gone by.
"And my future wife!" fretted the groom.
"She is on her way." Thundercracker said in response. "I'm afraid I know nothing about this 'pastor.' Will tried the numbers he had on his mobile phone, but none of the people he rang knew anything.
Another minute went by, and then Thundercracker turned, tipping his head in a listening pose. The rest of the Cybertronians also did likewise, and a moment later Will could hear it too…and he grinned as he realised just how his mercurial daughter was getting to the air field.
The sound of jet engines got louder, and then suddenly an F-22 dropped down, circled and landed. There was something strange about the way it glittered in the sun, and then Will realised that instead of the usual grey colour scheme, this F-22 was…iridescent white?
The canopy popped open and Annabelle was sat inside, grinning. Now Will could also understand why she'd wanted a dress that was anti-crease and not too voluminous in the skirt department.
She popped the harness and stood, sweeping her satiny skirts over the edge of the cockpit. Reaching back in she threw her father a small duffel, then swung her legs over the edge and pushed off, sliding down Starscream's fuselage. Her groom caught her before she hit the ground and kissed her soundly.
Annabelle greeted him, then raised a lace-gloved hand to touch Starscream's side.
"Thank you, Starscream, I would kiss you but I have lipstick on." she told him, then she and Will, pulling the groom with them, backed off.
"Thank you for that consideration, I do not want lipstick prints on me." said Starscream, as he changed back to his normal grey colour scheme and then flipped into robot form.
Annabelle was looking around.
"Okay, where's the pastor?" she asked, concern edging into her voice.
"That's what I was wondering." Will told her.
"If he's not here in five minutes, we will have to find someone else, perhaps one of the officers here could perform the ceremony?" she said. Will nodded – it shouldn't be too hard at an air base to find somebody qualified to perform a marriage, to his knowledge anyone from the rank of Captain up could. Or was that just seagoing vessels?
Five minutes came and went, time Annabelle used to slip off the pumps she'd worn to travel and disembark from her Seeker friend and put on the small strappy heels she had chosen for this occasion. She also put on the diamond and quartz necklace that she had had made for the wedding from the gems Starscream had gifted her with at that Christmas thirteen years ago, and added to since. She had had a girdle fashioned from some similar stones, which had also been unsuitable to wear in the pilot seat of an F-22, and this was put on as well. The bracelet she had wound about the handle of her bouquet was one of the originals gem bracelets Starscream had fashioned for her four-year-old self the Boxing Day following the first Christmas of the ceasefire.
The bracelet was her "something old", the dress her "something new", her mother's old wedding tiara was 'borrowed' and a star- sapphire set in gold on one of her fingers, also from the gems given to her by Starscream, counted as the 'something blue."
"Dad, can you see if you can find someone else?" she asked in exasperation. "It looks like, for whatever reason, the pastor is not going to show."
As Will reached for his phone, Starscream, who had been engaged in discussion with his fellow Cybertronians, stepped forwards.
"Perhaps I may be of assistance?" he suggested. "I believe that when my position of a head of a nation was explained to me, one of the examples of small privileges allotted to me was to perform such joinings?"
Annabelle clapped her hands and bounced up and down excitedly, for a moment reflecting the personality of one of the four-year-old children that had drawn Starscream's interest and affection.
"Oh yes, yes, yes!" she grinned. She grabbed her groom's hand. "Mike, do please say he can?" Her groom smiled.
"If it's legal and makes you happy, Anna, of course he can."
"Can you find the ceremony on the internet?" she asked Starscream.
"Of course I can!" he said haughtily. "Indeed I already have, but there are over one hundred different marriage ceremonies, even paring them down to those most used in this country, there is a bewildering assortment. It would be so much easier if we were using a Cybertronian ceremony, there are only three of those and two of them are for the joining of more than two persons." The Seeker said.
"Oh what a splendid idea!" said Annabelle with a grin. "Why not have a Cybertronian ceremony? Truly include all our guests." She said.
Her voice had obviously carried, for the press began snapping them again, and started calling questions. Will, well used to dealing with the media by now, walked forwards with his arms held up and fingers spread for hush. The crowd quieted.
"Ladies, gentlemen, may I have your attention please? My daughter has, as you have heard, accepted the generous offer by Decepticon Leader Starscream to perform her marriage, and has accepted his offer to have a Cybertronian ceremony. My wife and I have not issues with this, neither does the family of her husband to be." He looked briefly at said people to receive a not of assent before continuing.
"The wedding is already running late, so may I suggest we allow my daughter to get married before we lose further time, if there is time at the end, perhaps the happy couple will permit some questions and pose for photographs."
There was a general murmur of assent as Starscream nodded to Annabelle and Mike to stand before him. Sarah, nearby, pulled a packet of tissues from her pocket and blew her nose, and dabbed at the corners of her eyes delicately. The flower girl - Sam and Mikaela's eight-year-old - scattered petals before them, showing no fear as she emptied the last petals right over Starscream's large feet.
Behind the couple the bridesmaids assembled - Rachel, Maggie, and Mikaela.
"Mechs, femmes and fl – er, humans." Starscream said, correcting his near slip of the tongue before any of the press could work out what he had been about to say. "Your presence here is taken as an acceptance that you are all willing to stand as witnesses to the joining, the 'marriage' of these two people. They stand here before us all because they wish to affirm to others around them that their Sparks – that is, their hearts, resonate on the same frequency – er, that is, beat in time."
Annabelle looked up at Starscream.
"Let's make it easier for all of us and stick to the Cybertronian? I think we can work out the human equivalent. If we need a term translating we'll ask." She smiled and nodded.
"Then I must ask if there is anyone here who objects to this ceremony. If so, step forwards and state it, and be prepared to duel if your challenge is questioned."
Annabelle raised her hand to stifle a giggle. Cybertronian joinings certainly can't have been dull affairs!" Starscream looked over the crowd, some of whom looked amused, others shocked.
"I must point out that that is usually a formality. It is rare that a challenge is raised, rarer still that a duel ensues, and if it does, it is not a duel to the death."
He went back to looking at Annabelle and Mike.
"If at any point in this ceremony, either of you change your mind or feel you have done the wrong thing, you are permitted to say so, and no blame should be apportioned. The reasons for holding back, delaying or ceasing such a ceremony are varied, and often have nothing to do with the obvious feelings you have towards each other. Do you agree?"
"Not going to happen, but yes I understand and agree." Annabelle stated.
"Same here." Mike said "Can't see it happening, but I agree and understand as well."
"Then we shall continue." Starscream said. "Let all who are here be counted as witnesses. Would the Creator, Creators, or Creator figures like to stand forwards?"
"That's you and Mum, Dad!" Annabelle whispered, as Mike waved his own parents over.
"Do you, the Creators of these people, agree that as the two Sparks are synchronised, you will treat the two as one, that is, the partner will be treated as your own Creation?" Starscream asked. Each of the parents gave their assent, and then Starscream instructed the couple to face each other, and then told Annabele's mother to go behind Annabelle, and Mike's father to stand behind his son.
"Push them together, chest to chest." he said.
"So, what happens if the partners are of vastly differing sizes?" asked Will, thinking of the size differences he'd seen between some of the Cybertronians.
"Why, the smallest is pressed against the biggest, then the bigger picks the smaller partner up, of course." Starscream said, sounding genuinely surprised. He turned his attention back to where Sarah and Mike's father had pressed Annabelle and Mike together.
"Put your arms around each other." he instructed and they did, as he indicated the parents to stand back. Starscream regarded them with a little confusion.
"At this point, the couple usually open their chests and let their Sparks touch, but humans don't do that. How would humans finalise a bonding ceremony?" he asked.
Annabelle went crimson with embarassment as she realised what Starscream was saying. She had been an inquisitive child, and had earlier in her life asked where baby Cybertronians came from. Starscream and Ironhide, not having realised that the subject was taboo amongst humans to their own sparklings until they reached a certain age, told her. In detail. Starscream had even shown her holos.
"We do so later, in private. We are not doing it here and that is final. No ifs, ands, buts or maybes." she said firmly.
"Is there no way you show your affection in public?" Starscream asked.
"They could kiss." said Will. "That's an acceptable human way of showing it in public."
Will had actually confronted both Starscream and Ironhide when he had found out from Annabelle more than he ever wanted to know about the creation of baby Cybertronians that didn't involve the AllSpark.
"If they're old enough teh ask, they're old enough teh be told, isn't that the same in yehr culture?" Ironhide had asked in puzzlement. "If yeh hide it, it makes them more determined to find the answer one way or th' other, at least that's true of our sparklings."
Starscream's response had been very similar, and Will had had to concede that yes, human sparklings were all too good at finding out what they were not supposed to, thus enough of the truth to keep them satisfied was often the best policy.
"Very well." said Starscream, his voice pulling Will back from his memories. "Then the human custom of 'kissing' may be carried out."
Annabelle pulled Mike forwards and kissed him soundly, and he kissed her back.
"May the bonding be long and filled with joy, may their bond strengthen the two so that together they are stronger than they are apart. May they have the sparklings they desire, if any, and may any such sparklings learn from their Creators' wisdom. The two have become one, their sparks resonate in time." Starscream said.
He turned to the crowd.
"The formal joining is complete. May the blessings of Primus, or whatever deity you may believe in, be upon you" Anabelle hid a grimace - the far right Christians would not like that at ALL, then again, she didn't really care what they thought, this was her marriage, and she had enjoyed it.
Everyone but Will, Sarah, the couple, and the Cybertronians ducked as a loud bang split the air.
"It's okay everybody. Ironhide is giving them what he terms a 'twenty-one gun salute.' There is no need for concern." Optimus managed to be heard above the hubbub.
Once Ironhide had finished, everyone rushed forwards to shower the two with confetti, and then they all posed for photos-first the bride and groom with their entourage and families, then the Cybertronians were brought in for the Press to get their photos. Quarter of an hour was given over for questions, and then it was time for everybody to head for the nearby Sunset Park for the reception, where beverages for Cybertronian and human alike would be available, and food for the humans would be provided.
More Cybertronians would be there, and of course the Press would follow them, but Annabelle had a surprise for her new husband after a quick whisper in Starscream's audio. She took Mike by the arm and pointed over at where Thundercracker was just transforming into his jet form.
"Your transport awaits you, my darling." she said, kissing him on the cheek. She watched as a mixture of excitement and surprise spread over his face as he realised what she meant.
"We're going - in him?" he asked, delighted.
"Umm, not exactly, those jets only have room for one. you're going in him, but Starscream will fly next to him with me in." She explained.
"Okay." he said, and went over to be boosted up by Will as Annabelle once again took off her jewellery and changed her footwear for something more appropriate.
Ironhide came over to assist Annabelle, as he had all those years ago, lifting her gently into the cockpit. She strapped herself in as Skywarp approached Rachel, who was smoothing out the creases in her bridesmaid's dress.
"You are Rachel?" he asked.
"Yes." the pretty brunette said, tipping her head back and not at all fazed at talking to something six times her height and massing several hundred times her own weight. She was used to it by now. He took two steps back and transformed. "I have room for one inside. Need a lift?" he asked. Rachel laughed delightedly.
"Hey Ironhide, I could use a hand here!" she called, and the black mech came hurrying over.
He lifted her in, and the three Seekers all fired their thrusters and roared off into the sky, Skywarp slightly ahead, Starscream and Thundercracker flying almost wingtip-to-wingtip. Will smiled as he watched them recede.
"Come on, Ironhide." he said to his big friend. "Let's get on our way there. They'll get fed up of waiting if we leave it too long."
Ironhide folded up into his alt, and Will got in, grinning.
A/N(2) much thanks and virtual cookies must go to the members of the International Nerd Herd for letting me discuss this and bounce ideas of them. Much kudos to Shadowsinger (KDZeal) for helping me out when I was stuck and suggesting some lovely ideas. And for making me laugh when I needed it…J