A/N: Ever feel like one chapter just doesn't fit with the rest, but is still important? Yeah, this is one of them.
This is a one-shot off of Barricade Surprise. Because this just won't fit anywhere else. It was going to be a chapter earlier, but I have fought over this one for a long time (It just did NOT wanna be made!) Hopefully it's not too confusing, and it may even be choppy (Sorries!), but this is the best I could come up with - so bear with it lol
It's full of flashbacks (Italics) and just round about thinking on Barricade's part.
If it doesn't make sense, sorry :P I did my best! lol
She had just finished a race with an Engineer that claimed he ruled the roads in speed and was prepared to take on another when the emergency came to her. After she proved how Engineers should stick to the labs, she took off. As she drove, she found out the Engineer's designation was Wheeljack. However, it wasn't her utmost concern, her concern was Roller Force.
Groundhog and Motorhead, who had caught up, proceeded with Runner to get Roller Force back. She was getting tired of the idiots getting caught and having to free them out at times, but they were loyal to her and were beginning to show potential, so she kept them with her. It wasn't the first time one of them had been caught.
"It's your fault we are even in here in the first place!" the Commander hissed, "I can't leave you fraggers alone for 10 breems! Just 10!"
"Hey. It's not like we go out of our way to get caught because of your rival gangs, Runner. Those stupid twins thought it would be funny to take him, saying it would 'teach you a lesson'." Motorhead sneered.
"Sure you don't," The Commander replied as she moved further into the warehouse, "They have nothing to teach me. It's simple: They cannot beat me and it's pissing them off." This is probably one reason she was the Commander of the underground racing league. So far, she had rarely been beat. She ducked under a metal beam as Groundhog took the other side of the walkway and Motorhead ducked near a corridor further up.
"Just because you're uncatchable doesn't mean we are as well," Groundhog moaned as he glanced down the corridor he approached, watching for the others that worked here. "Seriously."
"Then I suggest you learn and learn fast," She had her head on her shoulders, and even if things got heated, she could whip some serious aft, having been taught how to fight by her brother when she was a mere Sparkling until she became a youngling. Since then she had taken down many rival racing leaders and claimed the drags as her own. There were very few she actually lost.
She was more affectionately known as the 'Unmaker on Wheels' for her bad attitude and determination. And she wore that title proudly.
Not only was she fast, but thus far she seemed unable to be captured, sometimes barely escaping, but still. "Let's get 'Force and get the slag out of here. My brother will make quick work of me if he finds me here. Last he knew I was in Vos."
As the three got closer to where Roller Force's signal came from, a Decepticon stood watching her from the side lines. He had been watching Runner for a while now and decided that the Commander would do perfectly with the Decepticons. Certainly one who was that fast would make a great Shock Trooper and soldier for Megatron as well.
He waited until Runner approached and set the plan in motion. When she got within the Decepticon's reach, he snatched her faster than Groundhog could see and Motorhead could react. Before Runner could even cry out that there had been a trap, the Commander's world went black. Both of them vanished without a trace after he stuck a spike into her neck to knock her out.
Barricade woke abruptly from the replay memory. It was one of the few that she kept a hold of, still to this day not knowing who it was that grabbed her or what had happened to her team. She remembered returning to Vos to find them gone. After searching for joors, she decided to stop. Something had happened to them.
Thinking about her team and how they ruled the road reminded her of how much she enjoyed her racing days once upon a time. She was somewhat delighted to find out the humans had their own types of racing on Earth and thus sometimes spent time watching NASCar or other forms of racing online. The drag racing and underground racing was mostly her style, however, since running around in circles and wrecking seemed a bit boring. It was always better to blast your opponent.
Some of the outlandish colors and looks the underground cars had made her decide she would never have a mech on her team if he came to her like that. To her, those belonged in the circus.
Even though she had lost contact with her team that day she was jumped, having never spoken to them again or found them, she still loved to race and very much missed the days that she ruled the road. It was in her Energon lines to race, not make friends. The ex-Commander still owed Sunstreaker and Sideswipe for taking Roller Force – and she would get them back if and when she saw them again.
While she went over that memory, she considered racing again someday. Especially when the day came that enough humans knew about them and she would have a real challenge, because, come on, let's face it. People just cannot shut their mouths, and they would be found eventually.
The room was barely lit. All she could see when she woke was darkness and a soft white light to her right. But it wasn't a welcoming darkness… no this darkness was forced upon. Her optics zoomed in and out as she tried to focus on something. That was when she noticed her vision had a different view to her HUD, which she found was installing and collaborating her systems to her upgrades. Wait, upgrades?
She turned her head and went to lift her arm to get up, finding it weak and the fine motor skills almost inactive, "I wouldn't suggest moving too quickly. Your hydraulics and mains need to get used to the new upgrades, Barricade."
Barricade lowered her arm, a bit surprised, having not registered that anyone else was in here. She looked around finding a mech standing off to the side. Come to think of it, it did feel weighted, "What upgrades?" She looked at her arm, "I didn't require any upgrades. What did you do to me?" she asked, half expecting this to be one of the bratty twins that had taken Roller Force.
"Armor and weapons,"
The femme glared at the one in front of her. The extra weight would slow her down, she knew it, "I had armor and weapons," She hissed as another weapon pinched down into her arm. She felt new Energon lines and other mixers hooking up to it immediately. It connected it to her proto-form and literally became a part of her. Her systems set to installing the software immediately.
"These are armor and weapons you will be using. You have also been sharred into your mature form."
"What? Why? I wasn't due for orns,"
"Welcome to the Decepticons,"
"Who are you?"
"Never mind, Barricade. You need not know."
"Why am I here? Where is my team?"
"You have been recruited for the Decepticon cause. Your new orders and programming should be complete in a few breems. You are to remain here until further notice."
"Why was I recruited to the Decepticons? I didn't want anything to do with them then, and I don't now."
"You will change your tune." The mech turned to leave. Barricade watched him leave. When she was happy he was gone, she weakly got to her feet and moved to look at herself in one of the chrome machines in the room. Her optics fixed on her armor. She looked even more like a mech than she had before. Obviously the mech who had dressed her down had no clue she was a femme, and with this armor, no one else would know either.
Barricade softly cradled Blacklight in her arms while he recharged as she thought about her days then and now. It was one of the many things that she had learned to calm her little one down while she was here on Earth. She looked down at him through what light the streets had to offer. To her, he was beautiful in every way, even if he also belonged to that idiot Starscream.
He was so innocent, even if he had been born a Decepticon, he was still innocent. The bloodlust and hatred of war did not run through his Energon lines or corrupt him. He was pure and had the ability of choice.
Things were strange to her now as she considered how she had changed throughout her life. She was a former Commander for an underground racing league and then she was forcefully recruited into the Decepticons as a military Shock Trooper for a leader that wished only for the dominance of his army and kind over all existence. He'd made sure their programming was as ruthless as he was himself. With him being leader, there was no mercy in what they did, and even took pleasure in doing so. Now, she's the creator of a Sparkling. She had never even considered a Sparkling of her own up until he was actually born.
Now, all of that previous programming had been broken away to reveal that she did care, and that the Autobots weren't completely wrong in their thinking of life, or weak because of it. She embraced the fact that they knew what they did and felt the way that they did. Not that she felt this way for all of humanity or even other Cybertronians, but… well, suffice it to say she may have agreed on some things, she never wanted to be labeled one.
Primus forbid someone call her the 'good guy'. She'd beat them senseless.
"My fellow Decepticons, I have a new order for you all. Today, you will exterminate the femmes and Sparklings. We no longer need them, as the Allspark can provide to us the armies we need without the need to grow."
Breems later, explosions were all around her. She ducked as a wheel came flying at her. It was not new knowing what was going on. It seemed as though there was a swarm of Decepticons going from city to city. Only their targets were the femmes and Sparklings.
Barricade moved her way into an alley, wincing as she heard the scream of a femme defending herself and her Sparkling. She knew it was an Autobot that had been in the wrong place at the wrong time. Personally, since it was an Autobot, she didn't even think to assist. It was having to sit there and listen as whatever Decepticon had found her did unthinkable things to her.
While she hid, she wondered why Megatron had ordered an attack on the Sparklings and femmes in the first place. And it wasn't just the Autobots he went after, oh no, no, no… he went after the Decepticon femmes as well. When targets shifted; that, in itself, Barricade couldn't understand at all. She stayed in the city of Polyhex when she heard the order come over the Decepticon main spread-link.
Everyone still believed she was actually a mech, so they never gave her the time of day when she played possum in the alley way of Vos as she heard the cries of her sisters Decepticon or Autobot, it didn't matter.
She heard the explosions and the cries. She also heard them scream as mechs did indescribable things to them before killing them. She was sure glad she had her armor to fool all of the mechs. The young femme could have gone to do something about it, sure, but she would have either 1, gotten killed in the massacre for trying to intrude, or she would have been found out and suffered worse and died anyway. It was a no-win situation for her so she decided to live and fight another day while explosions rattled her frame as femmes were destroyed around her. It was the only time she ever had to actually hide, thank Primus.
She could also hear the current Decepticon Air Commander, Starscream, his Trine-Mates, and a few others outwardly expressing their anger about the situation over the main Decepticon spread-link as well. There were voices from some of the other Decepticons she hadn't expected as she listened to them argue. Luckily Starscream had been sent to Kalis for a previous mission to keep an eye on things there, so he could run his mouth without Megatron killing him for it instantly. Although, by the sounds of it, later there would be no promises as to where Starscream's big mouth had gotten him. How badly he wanted to do something about it. He either went to try and got his head taken off or didn't go and lived for another day to overthrow Megatron, only hearing of the disaster and the extermination of their own species since he would not partake.
Barricade had heard later on that Starscream and a few others had been brutally beaten and tortured for their insubordination. She had no idea if the Air Commander had survived or not, since what trickled down the grapevine gave him a poor prognosis.
One would have to wonder what had provoked Megatron's deranged mind that it was a good idea in the first place to give that horrible order. How could exterminating the femmes of both factions and the Sparklings prove to be good or useful in any way? True, Decepticon femmes did not reproduce because either 1, Megatron would have them killed for doing it, or 2, there was no time for spark-birthing or even 3, a femme imbued with another spark was considered useless. Well Barricade had certainly proved the third idea wrong. She was able to fight, even while sparked with Blacklight.
…Then again, she did get her aft wafted by the yellow punk rather easily. So maybe she hadn't proved it wrong, but still!
Obviously this is why the war for the Allspark broke out, after all. Whoever controlled the Allspark controlled their species as a whole after the femmes and Sparklings had been destroyed. There were some twisted minds on Cybertron. Including the idiots who thought it would be a grand idea to shoot the fragging cube into space in the first place and lose it. That only served the purpose for Autobots and Decepticons both to go on a wild goose race to find it, leaving Cybertron to wilt around its star.
It was then that she thought about the trip to this very muddy, wet, seasonal planet:
First, they had gotten to the Red Planet with the few troops that Starscream had ordered to go with him or stragglers they had come across.
Then, it hadn't taken long for Starscream to decide who went and then actually getting to the stupid blue and green rock and manage to not get seen by satellites, orbiters or probes on the way in, using Soundwave's unique abilities to mask their presence.
Having to find the Allspark on the planet itself and manage surviving with only a handful in front lines was whacked to begin with as well. This only begged the question – Why did Starscream only choose the ones he had to go along with him? Especially when it included a Constructicon. And who had he picked to go with him on this very, possibly suicidal Mission from Mars? Why none other than the Shock Trooper herself, claiming the Decepticon was 'expendable' after finding the Allspark, something she wasn't supposed to hear in the first place.
There was a slight change of plan before Barricade had left with him for Earth, however. Soundwave had suddenly claimed he wanted a pet of his to go who would be used for smaller jobs and thus set Frenzy with her. She had no clue how it had happened, since she was out one second and back the next with the very annoying and high strung attachment.
It occurred to Barricade early on that coming to Earth was obviously an in and out mission. Find the cube and leave. Why Starscream had brought only himself and not his Trine-Mates on this high risk mission was also curious, since it was well understood that the humans were more powerful than they had originally thought.
That's probably why he left Thundercracker, Skywarp and Soundwave on Mars – He must have had no intention of returning. And he was confident. A confidence that got his aft in trouble a few times.
Barricade had tried to reason to herself as to why Starscream was after the Allspark like he was. Perhaps it was the power of the Allspark that drew him and figured that if he got the cube and left, the Decepticons would bow at his feet. No one really knew for sure. Well perhaps Thundercracker and Skywarp did, but they sure weren't saying anything.
Barricade had to laugh when she learned that Megatron was still alive. Obviously Starscream hadn't thought about what would happen if Megatron was found on top of it all. He could thank Frenzy for setting him free, making him think quick when he saw the Tyrant come out of Hoover Dam as well. It was either cruel irony or Starscream's luck. Or perhaps he knew Megatron was here as well and was intent on leaving him or making a final stand against him. Most likely the latter.
Starscream's double failure because of Megatron had also sent him off of the Earth to tell the others what had happened and to seize control of the Decepticons while he still could. He believed everyone had been killed on the planet and thus was ready to leave it behind. However, the fact Cybertron was in ruins only made him decide that returning to Earth would be prudent since they really had no place else to go.
Perhaps it was Primus' way of revenge that led to current events. The Allspark was gone and thus their species nothing more than an extinction waiting to take place since two mechs could not spark a Sparkling and femmes didn't come from the Allspark, they were sparked 'the old fashioned way'.
And here sat most likely the only femme in their existence on the very planet it was destroyed on, with a Sparkling, conceived 'the old fashioned way' and not even considered until the day he had emerged painfully from her own Spark. And it was the Sparkling of the idiot who wanted to leave her behind in the first place! What arrogance since they didn't even know they'd mated! It was mockery at its very best! And very backwards as well.
No, this wasn't the work of the Great Primus. More like a curse from the demon Unicron.
Somehow she knew then that Starscream would be back, so it was no surprise that Thundercracker and Skywarp had been seen on national television. Heh, fate these days. Because now with Blacklight feeling Starscream, it was a pretty sure bet that Starscream could feel him. Plus Soundwave already knew where she was when he'd used his telepathy, looking for his symbiot. Yeah, she must have pissed Primus off pretty badly to be in the situation she now faced.
Score: Barricade – a big fat zero. Chalk one up to Decepticon karma.
Barricade's thoughts were brought back to her Sparkling when he stretched his little arms and legs, causing her to look down once again. The light glinted off of his silver armor as moon beams now shown through the garage window.
She realized how precious her little one really was. She also knew what kind of position they both would now be in on Earth. She had no idea if any of the femmes had survived the massacre of that one Cybertronian orn, but somewhere deep in her spark, she hoped. If not for her Sparkling's safety, but for the continued existence of her species as well.
Being the last, if she was, made her a target for the other Decepticons and Autobots alike… all of them. She would become very popular, very fast, and it wasn't for her speed or demeanor this time. Hopefully her speed would not let her down. But racing the fastest thing in the skies didn't look like it would end in her favor. She needed to stay hidden, however impossible the task.
For now she looked down at her little one, admiring him. Blacklight was so fragile as she watched him. She learned that he needed her a lot and depended on her for Energon until he could produce his own or get it from another source. The young femme relished the fact that he stayed in her carrying hold when he recharged or fed. She could not remember anything that felt as pleasing to her as it truly was.
…or how much she was turning into an absolute sap over him. Prowl would be proud.
It was early when Prowl burst through the doors of their home. It woke the femme up out of recharge when he slammed the door, rushing to find her. Prowl turned, grabbing for his sister, "Runner, get out of here! Now!"
"What? Why, Prowl? What happened?" the femme sat up, looking lazily around. She knew small gang wars were popping up and figured, since Prowl was Optimus Prime's Second in Command, that something had happened.
"Something bad, leave! I will come for you when this clears over." He didn't know what did it. He didn't know anything. The mech had gotten word from Autobot intelligence that their creators had been killed in a nearby city. They were neutrals, so he wasn't entirely sure if something had happened or if they had been targeted by the Decepticons because of his rank.
"No buts, 'Run. Find your team and hide with them in Altihex for now. I can't protect you right now. I need you safe!"
"What's going on?"
"Our creators were killed outside of Stanix." The Autobot peered around nervously, "Some are claiming it was an accident but I am not so sure. I'm heading there to find out now."
"I want to go with you. I can help!"
"It's too dangerous for you."
"Stop treating me like I am a youngling! I can cover my aft against gang leaders. I do it all the time!"
"You are a youngling! You haven't even been sharred into your youngling armor, yet!" Prowl sighed, "Besides, I think it might have been Decepticons."
She had told Mikaela she had a brother and the girl had even met him, but no one else knew about him other than her old team mates and Mikaela. They had kept it this way after their creators had been killed in an accident and to protect her. Prowl had taken on the care of her since she was very young, even by their standards.
She hadn't even wanted to talk to him after she woke up with different programming and different armor, afraid of what he would think of her and ashamed of what had happened – but he found her. Explaining was out of the question as she tried to tell him that it wasn't her fault. It was no surprise that they ended up in a big fight, one that turned violent. In the end, he had shunned her and she left for the base that called her, especially when her HUD told her that she should be destroying the target Autobot in front of her. He knew how the Decepticons functioned and realized in those moments that he was going to lose her.
Had she known that Prowl wasn't as angry as he was scared, things probably would have turned out different.
knowing well what they could and probably would do to her if the mechs got their hands on her, Barricade hoped for the life of her that the Decepticons, especially, wouldn't attack her Sparkling as well. It wasn't a pretty scenario. She didn't know if that protocol was still in existence after the massacres of the femmes and Megatron's demise. There was no telling if she would be killed or not, or worse, her Sparkling. But then again, she was perhaps the last femme, so no, they probably wouldn't kill her once they found out.
Her life would definitely be taking a turn for the worst sooner or later. She didn't even want to think about how she would be treated once word got around about her gender. She didn't want to think about who would eventually try to steal her as their own. She didn't want to belong to any of them.
The Sparkling moved again, taking his creator's finger in his small hand and held it while he recharged. She couldn't find it in her Spark to set him down or set him in her carrying hold for now as she gazed down at her creation, because right now she was relishing the fact he was even alive after so many millennia of wars. He was the first born in so long and a glint of hope for her species.
…Yes, truly a sap. Instantly Barricade knew who to blame. It was Mikaela's fault.
Continually watching online for different things to teach her Sparkling since she had nothing to go on herself or she was bored out of her mind, she had even gone to looking into how humans and animals cared for and nurtured their own young and incorporated it into her own. Whatever works, when you got the maternal instinct, but hardly know a thing about what you're doing.
She found that there weren't much dissimilarities between some Earthlings and Cybertronians. The young depended on the adults, just as Sparklings did. True, the humans could not communicate with their young, but there were hints that the babies could give to what they wanted. Language enough, even if most human females didn't even realize it.
Over the time she had spent at the garage, she had also talked to Mikaela a lot more, being a bit clueless in the raising of Sparklings herself. Mikaela had proven to be a most useful informant on raising young. She had never laughed at her for not knowing and some of the things she offered actually worked! Like for one, who knew that a Sparkling liked to be rocked by its creators? Or laying on her while she relaxed, allowing her systems to lull him to recharge too? It was cute the first time she tried when he became fussy .
As her mind delved back into depressing times, she sighed again. Staring out the dark window into the night, she thought about if, when, where, what why and probably how. This time, however, her sigh had gotten the attention of Mikaela, who walked into the garage in her pajamas. She peered over to the girl and then looked back down to the Sparkling.
"Everything, ok, 'Cade?" Mikaela asked as she leaned on the wall, not even bothering to turn on the light. A clear signs she had been woken from her sleep, "It's like 3 am."
"Just remembering the times on Cybertron," Barricade admitted, softly running a clawed finger over Blacklight's shoulder.
the girl sniffed, "Something wrong?"
"No. Just times of extreme trial. It was around the time that Megatron had ordered all of the femmes and Sparklings to be eradicated and there was nothing I could do about it."
"Wow, was he stupid?" Mikaela brushed her hair out of her face, not even really comprehending what Barricade was saying.
"No, just deranged," Barricade spoke softly, as she watched her Sparkling in her arms, "…the greed for power."
"Cradling helps?" Mikaela had noticed how Blacklight was sprawled over Barricade's arms.
"It helps to keep him calm when his Spark calls out for 'Screamer," Barricade said gently, "It's amazing. The similarities between humans and us. Even down to nursing,"
"He nurses off of you?" Truly Mikaela wasn't sure if she wanted to know exactly how a robot nursed its offspring, but curiosity made her ask. Plus it was way too early or late to even try to think about it. Yeah, 5 years behind her, she would have ignored someone saying that, because robots were just that. Robots.
"Actually, yes, in a way. My body produces Energon somewhat by itself from my core, I only need fuel every few Earth days. His small body cannot produce enough to sustain him for the length of time and there is a siphon that he can latch onto until he can produce his own," she nearly whispered, trying to keep quiet while the Sparkling recharged.
Mikaela watched 'mother' and 'son' in awe for a long moment as she woke up more, apparently not getting any more sleep, she felt that Barricade could use a friend. As time went on, Mikaela knew she would learn just how bad it could really get. And she'd fight right beside the femme the entire way. Barricade had told her what might happen if a mech cornered her.
The girl knew something had Barricade uptight as well, and although she wanted to ask, she felt it wasn't the time or place. She turned, headed for her home, "I need coffee. I'm up now. Might as well make the best of it. Be right back."
Barricade's glowing red optics watched the human as she disappeared out the door, her heat sensors picking her up the entire way into her house. She never thought in a million vorns she would ever be close to a human – even going so far as to think of her as a friend. And she smirked, knowing the girl would keep her company for a while.
Decepticons didn't have friends. None of them could be trusted. Unless you count the very few that had trines or pets.
A/N: If it made sense, more power to us all! Hope this gives a little more background information on Barricade and her past and her current predicament.