Disclaimer: Wide Spread Panic in no way owns Transformers. She owns Joey and the plot… and her own twisted mind.
Author's Note: Guys, there's a poll on my profile asking which bots I should torture in this story. So far, Prowl is winning with old Ironhide in second; and Bluestreak, Bumblebee and Mirage have also been nominated. Vote on my next victim, please! And as always, Love to: Meirelle, white dino, blood shifter, CuriousDreamWeaver, Elita One, Carmilla DeWinter, TFSTARFIRE, Prime Revolver, animaluvr3, and RescueAngel for reviewing Are We There Yet? and/or Story Time. And love to the readers. You guys rock out loud! Cleaning chapters up.
Ch.1: Full Moon
Red Alert was quite possibly the most obnoxious mech in existence. The other mechs knew how obsessive he was and ignored it for the most part. The Security Officer was like an unstoppable force of nature; your best hope was to keep out of his path of destruction. After all, Red's job was to ensure the security of the base. He was expected to pry in places others didn't particularly care for him being. Every Autobot had become more or less resigned to the fact that at any given time, Red Alert was monitoring them. The only reconciling fact being that the mech didn't hold for blackmail.
Joey wasn't coping so well, this was mostly because Red had put cameras in her room. That she could sort of tolerate, but Red had crossed the line. She had went on a shopping trip with Bumblebee that day and had come back to find a camera where no camera had any business being.
She had wanted to take a bath in her brand new tub. Which, since it had been made by a giant alien, was the size of a small pool. She had just tugged her shirt off over her head, when she'd spotted it.
She stared up at it and her mouth fell open in disbelief. She closed her eyes and reopened them. Still there. There was a security camera… over her toilet. She pursed her lips and stomped out of the room, grabbing her shirt on the way, to pay a visit to a certain security officer.
The halls of the base were huge, metal and a dull gray and to a tiny human, a pain. On the bright side, she definitely got her exercise walking from place to place, though she had gotten into the habit of only walking until she found a friendly mech and then giving them the puppy eyes and asking for a lift. Undignified, but she didn't mind too much. After all, half the base referred her to as "the pet human" or "Fluffy" to her intense annoyance. Especially once they realized she didn't like it.
She heard a loud rumbling and darted to the wall, pressing her back firmly against it. She had learned by heart that the sound of engines in the halls was a bad thing. The roaring was suddenly drowned out by the angry scream of a siren. It turned out that Cybertronians, like humans, got bored. And bored giant aliens weren't a good thing.
Drift, Sunstreaker, Jazz, Sideswipe, and Hot Rod tore around the corner at the end of the hall and past her, the wind from the passage tugging at her clothes like insistent fingers and nearly knocking her down. Prowl rounded the corner next with his lights and sirens going like mad.
"No racing in the halls!" Prowl snarled as he chased the other five out of sight. "Don't make me report this to Prime!"
Blinking after them, Joey peeled herself off the wall and began walking again. Nothing that happened inside the Autobot base really surprised her much anymore. For a bunch of super-advanced aliens, they were amazingly like a group of energetic frat boys.
Mirage stood in front of Optimus Prime, respectfully silent. Prime was carefully filtering through the bundle of information and recordings that Mirage had uploaded to him. Mirage had yet to figure out how to infiltrate the Deceptions' bunker, but he had been carefully monitoring the Cons' activity for the past several weeks. Invisibility only went so far and Soundwave had been stationed as guard during most of that time. So far the only mechs he'd seen who regularly left the bunker were the seekers and the casseticons, though there had been new arrivals during that time. The seekers when they left regularly came back loaded down, but with what Mirage didn't know.
"We need to get a sample of this Ore-13," Prime said finally. "We can't gauge how big a threat it is, until we can analyze it."
"Sir," Mirage said. "More Decepticons are arriving every day."
"You're worried that Megatron intends to make this a battlefront?" Optimus asked as he turned away from Mirage to consult the screen behind his desk.
Mirage inclined his head slightly. "They're amassing an army. Whatever this Ore-13 is, I don't think they're brewing high-grade. If they're willing to fight for it, it must be very important."
"This world had already been declared an Autobot outpost. They won't just blindly attack us in our base. They only attacked Wheeljack and the younglings because they were alone," Prime said. "It does bother me that, in all this time, Megatron himself has yet to arrive. You yourself have pointed out to me that Starscream seems to be the acting leader."
"Yes, but Soundwave is here." Mirage shook his head disgustedly. "He never goes too far from Megatron."
"But he's not challenging Starscream, either."
"Sir? What are you thinking?" Mirage asked in genuine curiosity.
"We're missing something important here," Prime replied and his optic ridges pulled down in a frown. "Something important."
Mirage's head snapped up suddenly, his optics blazing intensely. "You don't think that the Decepticon faction has fractured do you?"
"I don't know," Prime said as he stared at the screen. "I don't know."
Bluestreak was trying to balance two boxes loaded with parts in his arms as he walked down the corridor. The parts were from Ratchet for Wheeljack's newest experiment, along with a threat that if he invented something that blew him up again, Ratchet would do him serious bodily injury after he fixed him. Ratchet was still angry over the last time and was still picking fragments of concrete and metal out of Perceptor's armor.
A door ahead of him slid open and Red Alert's head poked out of the doorway. The mech looked around with his helm sparking and spotted Bluestreak. "Come here," he ordered sounding furious.
"Did I do something wrong?" Bluestreak asked innocently and Red Alert reached into his office and dropped something that screeched angrily into one of the boxes of parts. Without a word, Red Alert stepped back into his office and the door slid shut in Bluestreak's confused face.
He looked down and tipped his head to one side as Joey fought her way free of some scrap wire. "That jerk," she muttered with a murderous look on her face.
"Oh, hey, Joey. Um, are you okay? Red didn't hurt you did he? He can be a little rough sometimes, but I think he's just cranky, because he doesn't recharge much. I can take you to Ratchet if you want."
She smiled faintly at Blue's worry and shook her head. "I'm fine. Hey, who's Red's superior?"
"I guess, Prowl. Why?"
"Perv-bot put a security camera in my bathroom," she said sulkily. "When I asked him to get rid of it, he said he couldn't have a blind spot in his security system. I told him where he could stick his stupid cameras and I think I pissed him off a little."
Blue waited until she finished ranting. "We have cameras in the wash racks, too," he said and then with a puzzled look, he asked, "What's a… perv?"
Sideswipe and Sunstreaker, after giving an irate Prowl the slip, were sitting in the rec room with Bluestreak and Joey. The human was sitting cross-legged on the table to Sunny's annoyance.
"So it doesn't bother you that he spies on you when you take a bath?" She demanded incredulously.
Sideswipe shrugged. "Actually, I never really thought about it. You kind of just get used to the cameras."
She shook her head at him. "You know, if I was a guy, I'd just moon his stinking cameras," she muttered, not thinking the mechs could hear.
"What's that?" Sunny asked as he nursed a cube of energon.
"Mooning," Sideswipe said. "What is it?"
Her face turned scarlet and she cleared her throat.
Sideswipe prodded her shoulder, nearly knocking her over. "Come on. You gotta tell. Your job is to explain human stuff." He grinned at her and she grimaced.
"Er, well. Humans… guy humans, mostly, they, um…" Her face got redder. "'tlike," she blurted out the words running together and she stared fixedly at the table.
Sideswipe raised an optic ridge. "Why?"
"Dunno, it's supposed to be insulting, I guess…" She said, never raising her eyes from the table.
The twins exchanged looks.
Red Alert returned to his office from fetching a cup of energon. He sank into his chair and sipped at the glowing liquid contentedly. Movement on one of the thousands of live feeds caught his eye. He glanced over to see the human dragging a human-sized chair into her bathing area. She glared at the camera and then stalked out again. She returned to the bathroom with a piece of cardboard under one arm and a roll of silver tape. Without a word, she stood on the chair and taped the sign over his camera. It said:
NO FREE PEEP SHOW FOR YOU, PERV-BOT!
He scowled in confusion and annoyance. How dare she cover up his cameras! And what the frag was a "peep show" and a "perv," anyway?
He turned to get up and remove the sign immediately, when he spotted Sideswipe walking purposefully up to one of the cameras in the wash racks. He grinned at the camera and then turned and slapped his aft. Smirking, he shook his skid plate at the camera.
There was a resounding thud as Red Alert fell off his chair and then the sound of his angry Cybertronian cursing could be heard on three floors of the base.
Author's Note: I'm back! Be afraid, be very afraid. Next chapter: who gets volunteered to infiltrate the cons base and Red Alert is on the war path. REVIEW PLEASE!