Always The Quiet Ones: Service Announcement
A Transformers G1 Fanfiction
Author: Sanjuno Shori Niko
Warnings: Crack, as much gender bending as is possible for non-biological entities, character severe beatings and death
Parings: Guess (c'mon, this is me we're talking about here…)
Disclaimer: TF © HasTak, I'm just borrowing them
Summary: When you take over a faction like the Decepticons through Right Of Conquest, there are still hoops to jump through. Not the least of which is telling everyone about the change in management.
(In which our story continues...)
It was a dark and stormy night, and Ratbat was a little bit confused. Megatron's greyed-out shell lay where it had been flung by Skywarp's kick. A mess of parts piled on the floor below the command throne dais, covered in various fluids that grew tacky and flaked as they dried out. The gathered Decepticons were pressed as close to the walls as they could get, optics wide and spooked as they looked from the shattered carcass of their former leader to the energon splattered figure of Thundercracker.
Of all the things the blue Seeker looked embarrassed by the situation. Skywarp and Starscream had to keep shoving him to the front. Otherwise he would have hidden behind their wings until everyone stopped looking at him.
Ratbat inched closer to Megatron's helm. Was he really deactivated? Really? No trick? Rumble looked like he was three klicks and a sarcastic comment away from a truly epic tantrum, and Ratbat felt sorry for his brother – really he did – but at the same time... Ratbat poked a testing claw through a shattered optic well, chittering in surprise when nothing happened. A squeak escaped him when his Creator lifted Ratbat up off the floor (and incidentally out of the puddle of only mostly dried mech fluid.)
"He's really dead!" Ratbat's exclamation stopped the uneasy murmurs of the gathered troop's cold. The only sub-group that did not look as if their world had ended were the Coneheads. Dirge just raised an optic ridge at Thundercracker from the corner of the room where he kept his wings between his mates and the rest of the Decepticon forces. Thundercracker's territorial displays had overshadowed Dirge's by a rather large margin, but then again, Thrust and Ramjet rarely played the jealousy games Starscream and Skywarp were so fond of. The only surprising thing about this situation was not how dead Megaton no was, but how long it had taken the tyrant to provoke Thundercracker into attacking. The heat was pretty much over with at this point. Thundercracker just shrugged helplessly at his fellow genitor in response to the unspoken question. Sometimes military coups just happened.
"So I killed Megatron." Thundercracker said bluntly, apparently giving up on finding a diplomatic method of explaining the situation and just wanting the public speaking portion of his cycle to be over with. "Consider any orders given to you by my trine-mates or Soundwave to be mine. I'm going to contact the Prime about a truce, if not an outright peace treaty, because I'm sick and tired of being half-starved and needing to steal energy to survive. The government that screwed us over is dead, the caste system is demolished, and the Prime is fair. We'll be able to achieve the goals we started the War for in the first place without losing face because the Prime wants peace more than he wants to win. And he's going to win, because we're using more energy than we get out of each raid. Starscream can show you the math, the Autobot's just have to wait us out and eventually we'll all go into stasis lock from energy depletion while they declare victory by default! I'd rather make a treaty while I still have the ability to fight back. Any objections?"
Now Ratbat may have been the youngest mech in the room, but he knew very well that normally Thundercracker would have had a much more difficult time seizing control, except over the course of the last few megacycles, Thundercracker had personally beaten every mech in the room into the ground at least once. Starscream and Skywarp were sporting matching crazed grins as they flexed spotless claws. Soundwave was standing calmly on Thundercracker's other side in obvious support, his authority in no way diminished by the way he held Ratbat tucked under his arm like a particularly wiggly football. As an inadvertent result of his campaign of terror, Thundercracker took control of the Decepticon Earth forces without a single voice so much as whispering an objection.
"Excellent, I'm going to clean up my mess and hit the wash-racks. You can all return to your duties." That said, Thundercracker jumped down off the dais and started gathering up the scattered pieces of Megatron. The shell-shocked Decepticon forces just stared.
"Here, TC, I'll give ya a hand." Skywarp bounced over to his mate, the action sending the nearest mechs skittering back fearfully.
"Get your afts back to work!" Starscream shouted gleefully, hands on his hips as he glared at the other Decepticons. "The War isn't over yet you useless fools! Back to your posts!"
The room cleared very quickly after that. If there was any skill being a Decepticon cultivated, it was the ability to beat a hasty retreat in the face of superior arms. Truthfully, the Decepticons were glad Starscream was giving them orders, him assuming command they were used to, obeying Thundercracker was just weird.
"Ha." Starscream grinned in triumph, which was funny. Ratbat blinked at the sliver Seeker. It was not as if Starscream was the new Leader, so why was he so smug? (Soundwave sighed and realized that for all his creation's observational savvy and expertise in espionage, certain facts of life escaped the understanding of the young.)
"Come on then, chatterbox." Starscream hooked an arm through Soundwave's free one. "It's past time we cleaned ourselves up. Thundercracker and Skywarp can join us once they're finished in here. We can use the time to consider how best to make use of their propensity for getting on their knees."
Soundwave tilted his head down to look at Starscream, who cheerfully brushed coolant residue off Soundwave's hip plates with his free hand. Glancing at the other two Seekers revealed two more salacious smirks (and yes, they did look very nice on their knees. It was enough to give a mech ideas.) After a thoughtful pause Soundwave regally inclined his head, making Starscream laugh merrily. "I knew you would see things my way."
"Bath time?" Ratbat blinked, still somewhat confused and wondering when his creator was going to stop talking to the Seekers and explain what was going on.
"Affirmative." Soundwave looked down at his creation and paused for an all together different reason, lifting Ratbat by the scruff-bar and sighing as the full extent of the mess was revealed. Sticky half-dried energon and sundry other internal fluids were smeared along Soundwave's side, transferred from Ratbat, who had managed to splatter enough to cover himself in the stuff while investigating Megatron's deactivated shell. "Unit Ratbat: filthy."
"He's a hatchling." Starscream drawled in amusement as Ratbat squeaked in dismayed offense. "Hatchlings make messes. One would think you would be used to the way they are magnetically attracted to the largest mess in the room by now, with as many offspring as you have."
"... Affirmative." Soundwave said at last, sounding almost morose, letting his shoulders slump just the tiniest bit in mock resignation. Starscream laughed, surprised and delighted and more carefree than Ratbat had ever witnessed the high strung Air Commander be.
"Now then, bitling, let's get you cleaned up." Starscream cooed, cheer undaunted as he swept Soundwave and his creation down the hall towards the officer's deck and the semi-private wash-racks reserved for High Command.
Soundwave did not bother to resist, Starscream always managed to get his own way eventually. Case in point, Megatron's deactivation and Starscream's Trine installed as the new Leaders of the Decepticon Empire. Oh, one could argue semantics, point out that it was Thundercracker who was the new Lord Commander, but Soundwave had observed enough of Seeker interaction over the megavorn of the War (and seen enough of the Trine together these last few cycles he had spent in their berth) to know that despite the prejudice of conventional thinking Starscream was very much the leader of his Seekers. Soundwave took a brief moment to be thankful for Starscream's domineering nature (odd as that may seem.) Skywarp had no interest in a command position, but he did have Thundercracker very firmly bound up in his dainty claws, and the last thing the Deception's needed during the coming period of tumultuous transition was to be at the non-existent mercy of an irreverent prankster. Starscream may be irritable and obsessive, but at least he would keep things under control.
"Whee!" Soundwave blinked, thoughts interrupted by Ratbat's squeal, and watched in bemused tolerance as the terror of Cybertron's Arial Elite tickled his youngest creation under the wings, whisking the hatchling out of Soundwave's grip as they walked into the wash-racks. Soundwave shook his head and moved to prepare a cleanser emersion. As covered as he was, Ratbat was going to need a good scrubbing to get completely cleaned.
"Eee! Nonono! Yeep!" Starscream laughed again as Ratbat squirmed in his hold to look at Soundwave beseechingly with the biggest, saddest optics the hatchling could muster. "Creator, help! Ack!"
"Unit Ratbat must be cleaned." Soundwave intoned with mock gravity. Starscream grinned conspiratorially at his fellow officer and plunked a squalling Ratbat into the Cassetticon sized basin of cleanser fluid the telepath had prepared while Ratbat was distracted by Starscream's assault. Soundwave was duly impressed by the ease with which Starscream completed the manoeuvre. Ratbat was fine – bar the enthusiastic splashing – once you got him in the bath. It was the transition from dry to wet that was always a hassle. Hm, maybe raising sparkling with the Seekers would be easier that Soundwave had previously imagined. To be fair, Soundwave was used to rearing his offspring alone, having co-parents to share the responsibility with would be a new experience.
"Oooh." Ratbat warbled happily as Starscream's claws deftly cleaned all those hard to reach places where dust and grit gathered and itched. Soundwave watched with interest, adding notes to his mental files. Three of his creations had sparked as flyers, a surprise to the telepath but not impossible. He had noted that his ground-bound offspring had thicker claws than their flying siblings. Soundwave's own claws were more suited to the heavy-duty work of combat than the needle-fine points of Starscream's tapered digits. This made sense though, the need for aerodynamics made the transformation seams of a flyer thinner and more tightly sealed, which made anything caught in the seams doubly irritating and also harder to clean out. Thinner claws made cleaning the seams possible. Interesting.
Soundwave did not bother to suppress the soft huff of laughter as he moved to gather the supplies he and Starscream would require for their own baths. Interesting was how the mind would latch on to the most inane things to distract from unsettling thoughts. Memories. The mutual betrayal of and by the leader he had followed for a megavorn. Soundwave shook his head, turning from the shelves just in time to catch sight of the sly grin Starscream turned towards him, slanted red optics warm with appreciation and something stronger. Something indefinable in the brief moment it was visible. The telepath was struck once again, as he so often was, by how attractive the lead Seeker was.
Annoying as it sometimes was, the Seekers had a right to their vanity. Face and form, Soundwave had never met a merely mediocre Seeker. They ran the gamut from pretty to handsome to stunningly beautiful, and Starscream's trine was no exception. Soundwave knew that when the news got out that they were lovers many would envy him simply because of the Seekers looked and the reputation they had as berth-mates. They would overlook, as they so often did, Starscream's blinding intelligence, Skywarp's generous humour, Thundercracker's thoughtful philosophy. It would be interesting, Soundwave mused, to see how many believed the telepath shallow enough to choose his lovers based on looks alone. Yes indeed, Soundwave was much looking forward to what the next vorn would bring.
Ratbat chirped, wiggling gleefully as Starscream lifted the now clean hatchling up to his face for nuzzling purposes, making little growls that made Ratbat giggle helplessly. Soundwave smiled, yes, he was looking forward to all of it. Peace, sparklings, and the endless entertainment that the new additions to his family unit would provoke from others.
Stepping forward, Soundwave retracted his mask and hooked an arm around Starscream's waist, kissing the Seeker soundly on his temptingly smiling mouth. Starscream purred and kissed back, one hand automatically covering Ratbat's optics to shield the hatchling from the sight. Ratbat clicked in surprise, squirming in Starscream's hold in an attempt to see what his creator was doing to the Seeker that made him so happy.
Soundwave laughed into the kiss, the adorable action incongruous with what he had known of Starscream prior to the heat cycle. He was looking forward to learning more.
He was looking forward to learning everything.
(Word Count: 2110)
Why look, I appear to have written a second chapter. However did that happen? XP