Disclaimer: I do not own Transformers. All recognizable characters are the property of HasTak. All unrecognizable ones are the intellectual property of yours truly; their theft is punishable by severe voodoo-induced pain in any and all sensitive organs of the body, followed by eternal damnation.

Because, you know, stealing is wrong.

Title: The Female of the Species

Summary: Transformers AU. Sparkbearer sidestory. In which human and Autobot politics don't quite mesh, Evelyn throws a tantrum, and Smokescreen is impressed. Oneshot.

Rating: T

Warnings: … wow, not even any cursing, unless you count Evy-curses.

Author Notes: A glimpse into the far, far future of the Sparkbearer stories. Some spoilers implied (so you may or may not catch them ;3). The inspiration for this one is Rudyard Kipling's poem "The Female of the Species." Hence the quote.

The Female of the Species

She is wedded to convictions—in default of grosser ties;
Her contentions are her children, Heaven help him who denies!—
He will meet no suave discussion, but the instant, white-hot, wild,
Wakened female of the species warring as for spouse and child.

- "The Female of the Species," Rudyard Kipling

"You can't send out U.S. planes for this. They're out over Brazilian waters now. We're in communication with their government now, but you'll have to wait for clearance."

Smokescreen's glare was but one of many, but the human general, Walter McMaster, ignored them all, standing arms akimbo before the Cybertronian-scale viewscreens that dominated the command center.

The satellite images conveyed sporadic, static-laden images of churning ocean waters and smoky haze and – very, very rarely – multicolored blurs, purple and blue and white, punctuated by laser fire and explosions. Another screen showed a blue grid map of the Brazilian coastline, two purple dots dancing circles around a lone red.

"At least Starscream didn't stick around," breathed one of the more Autobot-friendly aides.

Ironhide was livid, and he made no attempt to hide it, growling in Cybertronian,"Skyfire can't keep that up! Those two slaggers're jus' playin' games with him! Optimus–!"

"I know, my friend," replied the commander in the same language, his voice grim. "A moment. Help is coming."

Smokescreen wondered what kind of help the Prime meant when the humans were so determined to keep the Autobots helpless in a political quagmire, but then the distinctive thunder of powerful engines caught his attention, growing louder. A quick check of the Fortress schematic showed three Autobot signals rapidly approaching, one of them marked by a very distinctive beacon.

The doors were opening even before the two cars had squealed to a halt, aft-ends slewed around so far that they were very nearly facing the opposite direction by the time they stopped, sweeping lines of black marring the corridor floor in their wake.

Sunstreaker transformed, his optics already shining nearly white. Sideswipe's door opened, and the small form of Evelyn Hughes emerged, her own eyes narrowed, face pale, lips pinched together in an expression of sheer fury.

Smokescreen thought it was a sign of great intelligence – or perhaps above-average self-preservation instincts – that none of the guards on duty in the command room attempted to stop the little femme as she strode toward General McMaster with all the deadly intensity of a looming thunderhead.

"Am I to understand," she said, voice carrying clearly across a room that had fallen silent save for the humming of computers and the thrum of Cybertronian systems, "that you are denying aid to an ally in need?"

"Foreign waters," said McMaster, barely sparing a glance at the two warriors who were now making it a point to Loom behind Evelyn. "It's out of my hands."

"Captain Erickson has made it quite clear that the Red-Tails are prepped and ready to fly."

"I can't–"

"Am I also to understand," growled the femme, voice growing sharp, "that Autobot Skyfire is under attack now due to his intervention on behalf of your soldiers?"


"And that this intervention was necessitated after you sent a team into an area that Autobots Smokescreen and Jazz both advised you was regularly patrolled by Decepticon Seekers?"

"It is my prerogative if I want to verify intel for use by my own forces," snapped the general. "Pardon me, Miss Hughes, but not everyone puts such faith in these alien machines as you do!"

Infuriated revs came from all around, Autobots stiffening. Even the Prime's optics paled, Smokescreen noticed, but smoke was trailing from the white flier's right wing on the viewscreen, so perhaps it was not the conversation that affected him.

Even Smokescreen was surprised by what happened next.

Evelyn's hand lashed out, latched onto the general's impeccably straight, black tie, and yanked. She pressed forward, invading his personal space, and when she spoke, it was a growl, and the ensuing speech was a thing of much admiration amongst the Autobot ranks for years to come.

"You listen to me, you two-tongued, gutless, spineless, witless, hopeless excuse for a mentally-deficient troglodyte – that mech is risking his life to save your men because you were too much of a pompous, egotistical pain-in-the-aft to listen to their tactical data! Next time you want to play dice with life and death, go out and get yourself shot! Stop recruiting other people to do it for you!"

She used her grip upon the man's tie to haul him down to her level. When she spoke, her voice came as a low, intense hiss that even Cybertronian audio-sensors had to strain to decipher.

"Send out air support, or so help me, I have two very bored Lamborghinis who have been begging me for a chance to play hacky-sack with a human, and you are looking like an extremely tempting volunteer."

The general spluttered wordlessly, face turning an unhealthy shade of puce, but the deadly expression upon Evelyn's face did not change. Sideswipe and Sunstreaker stared down with identical expressions of barely-restrained malice, engines growling, optics white.

"S-send out the Red-Tails," the general stammered.

A muted whoop came over the communication channel, followed by Captain Erickson's satisfied crow of, "Roger that, Command. We are on our way!"

End The Female of the Species