Well, I've been thinking about Bluestreak a lot lately. He's been on my heart and dancing about in my mind. I've been toying with writing something for him for a while, and finally this came to mind. The title actually has deeper meaning that a simple cluster of words put together by the writer- I was inspired to use them by my best friend Lissy, who featured them in her own poetic work in class, where even she had taken them from a campaign dealing with domestic abuse/rape. The words ring very powerfully in my core, and I thought of nothing else but using them as the title for this here Bluestreak one-shot. This was written in only a couple of hours and is completely unedited, so I implore patience while I get around to editing. You're all too kind~
Your Silence Will Not Save You
"I love talking about nothing. It is the only thing I know anything about." Oscar Wilde
"They're calling it a massacre."
"A massacre? Really?"
"What else would you call it? They destroyed an entire city."
"When Megatron first came out, I never thought it would get this bad. I never thought something like this would happen."
"None of us had any idea..."
In the half-conscious ether Bluestreak found himself in, a cool hand came to rest on his forehead, stroking there gently. He wanted to say something, anything, to the voices so high above him, but he found himself mute. What were they talking about? A massacre? Where? He didn't understand.
"How is the clean up effort coming?"
"They're still sorting through the wreckage."
A sorrowful sigh drifted from somewhere. "Of all the places to hit, why the Crystal City?"
The Crystal City? That's where he lived. What was wrong with the city? What happened? Why couldn't he remember anything? Why couldn't he move, or see, or speak? What was wrong with him? What happened to the city? What was wrong with his home? A massacre. Is that what they meant by the massacre? The Crystal City?
"The place was a sitting target, everyone knows that. Even with the Guardians stationed around the capital center, one stray blast could have taken it out. If anyone wanted quick and dirty carnage, that was the place to start."
"What about survivors?"
There was a reluctant pause, and then someone said, "He's the only one."
Paralyzed and mute, Bluestreak wished more than anything to scream. He knew they were referring to him.
Above all things, silence filled his orns.
It was a permeating, oppressing, deafening silence.
"Bluestreak? Bluestreak, can you hear me? Respond if you can hear me?"
He could hear her. Of course he could hear her. He wasn't deaf. His audio receptors worked fine the orn he heard them say everyone he knew, all his friends, co-workers, exclusives, everyone he knew was dead. And he wasn't. His audio receptors worked fine now, too. To answer the medic, he nodded slowly, blank expression showing no pain when wires sparked in his neck from the damages he'd sustained from that orn. He didn't utter a sound. Not a word. Disturbing for a bot who had once loved to talk.
The medic pursed her mouthplates, turning his faceplate one way, and then the other, scanning him meticulously. Her scans would show a myriad of damages- plating askew, energon lines collapsed, hydraulics bent, temp-plating taking up the majority of his exoskeleton- but they would not tell her why he wouldn't speak. Why he couldn't speak. There was nothing wrong with his audio receptors. There was nothing wrong with his lingual files. There was nothing wrong with his vocal processor.
For the first time in Bluestreak's life, he simply had nothing to say.
Of course, the medic didn't know that.
"I'm not registering any damages to any of your audio or vocal apparatuses..." she noted the pained look that crossed his faceplate, and instantly she was tenfold concerned. "Are you in pain anywhere? Discomfort? Do you wish me to administer a pain reliever or turn off your tactile sensor net?"
All he could do was shake his head. Where he was in pain, there was no pain reliever to dull it, and there were no neural relays to simply switch off. He was in pain deeper than just his frame.
"If... if you're sure you're not in pain." Other than what her medical files suggested, the medic didn't know what to do for him. Never in all the history of Cybertron had anything like the Crystal City massacre happened, and there certainly were no bots to have witnessed equivalent tragedy. There had never been a city torn assunder before. Their planet had been a relatively peaceful one for eons. Civilians knew nothing of war, and medics knew nothing of how to treat the horrors that beckoned on the heels of utter devastation. There was nothing she could do for Bluestreak, so she slid from the berth and trotted for the door. "If you need anything, don't be afraid to page any of the medics on call-."
Bluestreak stared flatly, optics seeing nothing but a looping set of memories. Fires of all colours as iron, tungsten, adamantium, and cobalt were set aflame; shattering crystal spires; the denizens of the peaceful city having their optics opened to war before they saw nothing more. He did not see the medic.
She sighed nonetheless, helpless to assist this one poor bot amongst the hundreds of nameless victims to the growing war. "Good night, sweet one."
The door was shut, and without Bluestreak completely noticing, night had set. He took little notice, for night had already set a long time ago for him. It had set one fateful orn while he worked hard in the ringing, chiming, singing crystal-lined tops of the city of whose name was derived from the decorative minerals used in the architecture. Dawn had never come. Dusk in his city was more beautiful than in any other city upon Cybertron; their star may have been far away, its light pale and grey, but when those dying rays cast upon the many facets of the multi-hued crystal tops of the city, there would be a glorious fracturing of light. Rainbows, spark-shatteringly beautiful, would cover the entire city. Metal walls of spires would appear in technicolour as hundreds of thousands of shards of light and colour would come to dance. If light were a form of music, then dusk in the city would be a symphony.
Dawn was just as achingly magical. Mid-morning, noon, and even mid-afternoon were magnificent. In fact, if it were up to Bluestreak to decide what time of the orn was the most magnificent, he'd have to say that any time when the skies were clear and light was pouring in was the most beautiful in the city. But dusk always special. Their star had set that orn, and so came the darkness.
He'd seen them coming.
Upon the horizon, they'd been a dark cloud. An approaching monster. From the highest tower in the city, Bluestreak had been able to see the approach of the Decepticons, and had let terror seize him. Precious moments when he could have been alerting Security Response leaked by as poison in his lines. He watched as they came, closer still, flying ever closer over the far reaches of the city-state into the capital center. A deep, silent terror took hold of him when he realized he was looking into the horizon and seeing death stare back. Those deep, dark, smouldering red optics he could imagine glaring at him from the depths of the encroaching night stripped the words from his processor and rendered him mute.
All his life, he had had words upon words to say, and when it had meant the most, everything had been stolen from him. He found himself rendered mute.
When the alarms did sound, he ran, but it had already been too late. Jets raced over the city, and the supersonic vibrations that followed caused the sparkling diamonds and quartz and corundum of the city to vibrate, and then scream. The sound of shattering overtook the night. Followed by the sound of screaming bots. So many screaming bots and shrieking crystals that together they overpowered the city-wide alarm and rendered everything else deafeningly, terrifyingly mute.
As Bluestreak ran, from the top of the tower into the confused and frightened streets, it was the name of terror ripped from everyone's mouthplates. It was the mantra chanted on high as bots who bore the mark of destruction came down upon the innocent. There was so much noise. Terrible noise. Things stopped being words and just became noise. Bluestreak had overheard two medics murmuring that there was a rumour passing around that Soundwave of the informational hub had defected to Megatron's side, and upon remembering that terrible, deafening, horrible infinity of an orn, Bluestreak was sure half of the noise was him.
Make it stop
He didn't know how to stop seeing the minibot who was crushed beneath the weight of a landing Decepticon's feet. In his mind, he could see the picture with perfect clarity, throwing himself into the street to run, only to scramble back as the scream of a jet gave way to the crescendo of transformation, becoming a herald of death as taloned feet thrust through the chassis of a flailing, running bot. In a brief flash, his life ended.
Make It Stop.
Buildings groaned as they collapsed, floor-by-floor. Flight-capable bots threw themselves out windows to escape death, only to be picked off in the sky. Those who were not flight capable threw themselves to the sky in hopes to live, but no miracle saved them from gravity. They spread across the streets in sickening rainbows that mocked the shattering of light at dusk.
Make It Stop!!!
And finally there were medics and medical assistants crowding into his private room as they heard the laboured wheezing of his vents, the wordless groans of torture as he relived that orn over and over. He was still living that orn, still running. His limbs flailed despite the pain, reaching for something, trying to get away. Medically-trained hands grasped back, taking him and holding him fast, easing him down the berth and strapping him there. Twisted panels on his arms were jerked back, and hypodermic relief was administered, cold calmness oozing into his frame in the form of heavy sedatives.
And finally the memories stopped. They oozed to a halt, only to fester and puss in the recesses of his mind while everything else took on a hazy countenance as the drugs did their work. Soon enough, as soon as he was deemed incapacitated the medics left, and the terrible silence returned.
It was the silence that was the worst.
He couldn't stand the silence. It brought things he didn't want to see. He didn't want to see the Crystal City anymore. In the silence, the screams were too loud, too real. No matter how much ice they injected into his energon to calm his inflamed spark, they always left his room afterwards and let the deadly quiet return. Everything became too, too loud in his head.
And still... and still, he could not speak to fill the void.
No words seemed adequate. He never said anything that orn. He never warned anyone. He'd been frozen. Cowardly. Mute. And an entire city fell because of him. Of all the orns to lose his gift of gab, he had chosen the orn when silence was a death sentence for thousands. His friends paid for his cowardice with their lives. Every single one of them silenced for forever more. There were no words for Bluestreak t say to make that okay, so he remained silent, trapped in his own tortured thoughts.
"He's in there?"
"The sole survivor of the entire massacre?"
"Yes, sir. But I don't know what you think you'll gain from meeting with him. He hasn't spoken a word since, you see."
"That's alright. I simply want to meet him."
Bluestreak knew the moment the new mech entered his room because the silence was ended by the sound of the door sighing open. Footsteps were a gentle pattern across the floor, scattering errant looping memories. The sound of servos gliding against each other, the soft hiss of compressed air easing out vents, was enough to keep the terrible things Bluestreak would see in the silence at bay. A hand on his shoulder had him turning, looking up into a faceplate he knew and was awed by.
"Bluestreak, I don't know if you can understand me, but I am Optimus Prime-."
Of course you're Optimus Prime. Everyone knows who Optimus Prime is. Bluestreak wished for nothing more than to say something to this great hero, the leader of their world, the mech who was fighting back against Megatron, but he failed at uttering a sound.
"I came here when I heard there was a survivor." Oh, his voice was a balm. It was beautiful and fluid and deep, such a magical sound in the void of emptiness that it spurred Bluestreak's frame to life. There was a quality about the Prime that was not just politics but actual sincerity. The hand that laid upon Bluestreak's shoulder fell to his hand, grasping it gently. "I wanted to meet the mech who made it through that night."
All Bluestreak could do was nod.
"There are no words for me to convey how deeply sorry I am that you had to experience something as horrific as- as the attack, but I commend you for your bravery in surviving such a tragedy."
No, no, no! Not brave! Anything but brave! He'd been a coward! A trembling mute coward!
The change in Bluestreak's expression must have been obvious, because Optimus drew away. The Prime's unfathomably deep optics regarded him with a powerful knowingness that almost brought the raging terror within him to a halt.
"If there is ever a time that you feel the need to let it all out, to speak to someone, anyone, know that I am only a comms channel away. I am more than willing to hear anything you have to say."
And just like that, it was as if Primus was forgiving him for his great and terrible sin of silence. If Optimus Prime himself could come and stand before him, speaking with the wonderful, deep, soothing voice of his, it was as if it were alright to speak again.
It became apparent that Bluestreak had something to say once more.
And from then on, he never stopped having something to say, if only to save himself from the silence.