Hey All! I finally found the accursed bunny responsible for this story! It took off for a long time, but I have caught it once again! Thank you eltigre221 for inspiring me to hunt down this bunny. Now, on with the story!

It had been three orns and there was still no sign of his little brother. The Enforcers had scoured the city, searching for any sign of the youngling. They had found a femme who recalled seeing Blackdot and Optimus in the marketplace, but all she could tell them was that they had headed to the Junction at I-62. The Junction was a hubcenter that acted as a connection point for numerous roads, train routes and shuttle stops. The security cameras had not picked up Optimus boarding any train or shuttle, and he didn't seem to have passed through the toll ways. Unfortunately, there were several roads that we toll free. It was likely the mech had taken his little brother out of the city via one of the free roads.

Ultraflash put a hand to his face, trying to rub away the weariness. He had barely recharged since his brother was taken from him. Primus! He would give anything to be able to hold Optimus in his arms right now. His poor brother must be so scared. He had looked horrible, beaten and chained like an animal. If he had a choice he would have released the criminals immediately, would have given them anything to ensure Optimus' safe return. But he was the Magnus. No matter how much he wanted to, he could not put his people at risk by freeing known terrorists. Even if he tried, the Council would intervene.

Determination flashed in clear blue optics. Thus far he had been forbidden from joining the search for his little brother. The Council didn't want it to appear as though the bastard mech had managed to affect him. Well, no more. He was the Magnus, frag it, and he would find Optimus. Woe betide the mech who had stolen his brother from him. The monster would have to beg Primus for mercy, for Ultraflash would show him none.

He watched the brat through the monitors, making sure that he was still alive. The mechling was quiet, not daring to say a word, not even in the supposed solitude of his room. He cried at night, whimpering in his recharge for his big brother. The mech snorted. Families were useless, good only as cannon fodder. Letting anyone get close, even family, would only bring you down. He remembered the look of betrayal in his own brother's optics as he sold him into slavery. Had the fool been smart enough to keep his trap shut, he might have kept him around. Alas, the moment Xipher had opened his mouth, his fate had been sealed. Good riddance to a useless waste of space.

But the kid, he had his big brother wrapped around his delicate little finger and didn't even know it. The Magnus would do anything for the youngling. He had seen the pair together once. They had been walking through the Celestial Gardens, the brat holding onto the Magnus' hand, excitedly pulling him from one display to the next. Ultra Magnus had followed him, smiling indulgently. And when the brat had been too tired to walk, his sibling had calmly scooped him up and cradled him gently to his chassis as they left the park. It was then that this plot had been born. It was foolproof! So why had his comrades not been released? Three orns was more than enough time. Perhaps it was time to send another message to Cybertron's glorious leader.

Optimus did not know how much time had passed. He was hungry and cold. He was scared. He wanted his brother. Why wasn't he coming? Was he such a bad youngling that Ultra didn't want him anymore? No! That wasn't true; his big brother loved him. He did. Maybe he was hurt! What if the bad mech had hurt him? He had heard him mumbling bad things about his brother when he brought him food sometimes. The mean mech really didn't like Ultra. Tears welled up in the youngling's optics, but he refused to let them fall. The bad mech hated crying. Said that only weak mechs cry, and would kick him really hard if he cried. Ultra wouldn't cry; he was brave. But if he was hurt, then he couldn't come get Optimus. So he would have to be brave, and wait for his brother to get better. Or should he try and go to Ultra?

His fuel tanks rumbled at that moment. He was weak with hunger, and his little body hurt all over. He didn't know it, but his repair system was barely functioning, given the poor quality of energon he had been consuming. Maybe it was time for energon? He wasn't sure, but he thought that the bad mech would usually come with a small cube for him around this time. He could hear heavy pedesteps coming towards his room. Shrinking back against the wall, the youngling tried to make himself look as small as possible. If he was good, the mean mech ignored him. He tried very hard to be small and quiet, like a good mech should.

"Get up brat!" the black mech snarled as he stormed into the room. "You and I are going to have a little chat with your brother."Optimus' optics lit up. He was going to talk to his brother! He cried out as he was lifted off the ground by a tight servo wrapped around his slender neck. "Now you listen to me good Brat. If you do anything to tell your brother where you are or what I look like I will make sure that your death is long and painful. Do you understand me?" He shook the small frame hard, optics never leaving the mechling's face. Optimus whimpered.


"Yes what?"

"Yes Creator." The mech smirked. Nothing would break the Magnus more than his precious brother calling him Creator.

"Hai-yah! Hai-yah! Hai-yah!" Master Yoketron watched as the beginners class moved through their drills. This class was young; most of them were not yet old enough to attend school. They were here under the supervision of their parents. Those who chose to move forward and train seriously as cyberninjas would move into the dorms once they had their second upgrade.

His optics moved from his students to the assembled parents. It was always a good idea to gauge who was willing to let their youngling do what. Some were against combat drills, but wanted their child to learn the katas. Others wanted champion fighters, while others still wanted their sparklings to learn self-defense. Only a few would go on to become true cyberninjas. Speaking of, he could see a mech in the crowd that he had trained with, but who had chosen to go into politics instead.

"Siet!" Master Yoketron called for the practice to end. He preferred using ancient Cybertronian, as that is what his pupils learned the farther the progressed. It was easier for them to start learning it when they were young. "A very good practice younglings. I am pleased with your progress. Continue to practice your forms at home. I will see you next groon." The class mimicked the senior student and bowed to their master. Once the last of the students and parents had left the dojo, he turned to speak with his old friend.

"Ultraflash," the pair clasped hands solemnly. "I am glad to see you. I only wish it was under better circumstances." The Magnus nodded in thanks.

"I had planned on bringing Optimus here tonight for his first lesson."

"Perhaps, but that is not why you are here now."

"No. The Council is insisting that I do not search for my brother. For appearance's sake," he sneered. "I regret that I have let them control me for so long, but no longer. I will find my brother, but I need help."

"Of course, my friend. I will help with anything you need."

"You have always been a better tracker than I. I fear that by waiting so long, the trail may have gone cold, but if there is any chance that it can be picked up, I know you will find it." Yoketron nodded, mind already working over the best ways to find a mech who didn't want to be found. "I must warn you that the Enforcers and Council will not look kindly on a civilian getting involved, even at my request." Yoketron snorted inelegantly.

"It does not matter what they think. They cannot persecute me, as under the old laws, which may be out of favor but were never overturned, a cyberninja may be hired for a variety of purposes, including tracking and retrieval. Do not worry for me, Ultra. Let us worry about young Optimus." The relief if the Magnus' optics was palpable.

"Thank you."

A tiny voice interrupted the pair.

"Master Yoketron?" A black and gold youngling stood in the entrance to the dojo, looking lost.

"Yes Prowl?" The little mech looked up, noticing that there was another adult besides his master in the dojo. He looked away shyly.

"I can't remember the way to my room." Yoketron smiled.

"Do not worry Prowl. Ultra and I will show you the way." The Magnus fell in step with his friend as the ninja led his young charge to the private rooms. Prowl kept sneaking glances at him, but would look away when he was caught looking. Finally, the Magnus asked,

"Is something wrong, young one?" Prowl blushed.

"Why are you sad sir?" The mechling asked with the curiosity typical in the young. Ultraflash winced.

"My little brother was stolen, little one." Prowl's optics went wide.

"Oh no! Are you going to get him back?" Ultra nodded.

"Yes, I am."

"Can I help?" Prowl looked so earnest that it was hard to say no.

"Unfortunately, Prowl, the mech who took Optimus is very mean, and he won't hesitate to hurt you."

"Oh. Well, when you get Optimus back, you should bring him here. I will teach him to protect himself. He'll be the best cyberninja ever!"

"Thank you Prowl, that is very kind. I will bring him to the dojo one day when he is feeling better." Prowl nodded, pleased, and let his master tuck him in without a fuss. The adult mechs crept out of the room quietly, leaving the youngling to recharge.

"He looks like you." Yoketron caught the implied question.

"I did not create him. One of my elder students caught him in the kitchen, stealing energon. He does not remember ever having creators. I could not just leave him to the cruelties of the streets." Ultraflash understood. Prowl was not Yoketron's physical creation, but he was his in every other way. "Come. You promised Prowl you would introduce him to Optimus, and I would not see that promise break." Nothing else was said as the Cyberninja master and former ninja faded into the night.