Disclaimer: Transformers © Hasbro. Me no own.

Orphans

He's my best friend / best of all best friend / do you have a best friend too?

Toy Box

They were young, Optimus had to admit. He watched as they played in the makeshift jungle gym the youth sector had set up for the sparklings to enjoy. At his side was Ultra Magnus, on the other side of the Iacon youth sector was Megatron, his co-ruler, attempting to negotiate funding. The two sparklings Ultra Magnus wanted to show him were currently chasing each other around the swings, yelling and laughing like sparklings were prone to do. Optimus glanced over at his longtime friend. "Any particular reason these two stick out in your processor?" he asked.

Magnus smiled. "Just watch them."

Optimus did. Their similarities were striking – opposite paint schemes of the same two colors, one with doorwings just starting to bud, the other with sensory horns on his helm. "What happened to their creators?" Prime asked, content to watch their play.

Magnus shrugged. "We think they were abandoned."

That earned an odd look from Prime. "Abandoned?"

"We found them outside the youth sector, recently sparked." Magnus explained, distaste clear in his tone. While Magnus was not as openly affectionate with the younglings as others who worked with him were, he cared for them in his own way. "They didn't even have designations."

One of the older sparklings came racing past the pair, almost knocking the smaller one with the horns over. The doorwinger quickly reached out and grabbed his comrade's arm, steadying him. "Okay?"

"Okay." And the play continued.

Optimus's optics widened. "He's blind." he murmured. The grey optics were a clear indication of the defect. Magnus shook his head.

"He's not."

"How do you know?"

"He's got Prowl." Magnus nodded to the pair. "Prowl and Jazz. They named themselves not too long after they started speaking. As long as Prowl is in the same area as Jazz, Jazz can see. Or at least he acts like he can. We think they're sharing a comm. link, but who knows for sure? We've been trying to create a visor for Jazz, but he won't let the only scientist we have near him."

Optimus nodded, watching the new with new fascination. "Have you found families for them yet?"

"No. We don't have anyone who can take in two at once." Magnus said with a sigh. "They won't separate. We had a couple try to take in Prowl, but he refused to leave without Jazz. I think if we could find a way to keep them in contact with each other, they might accept separate families."

The two fell silent, watching as Prowl and Jazz collapsed against the swings. One of the femmes Prime recognized as Chromia – Ironhide's mate – walked onto the playground, calling out to the sparklings. Nap time, apparently. Magnus chuckled. "Oh, she's gonna be in for it if she doesn't watch out."

"What do you mean?"

"The real reason I wanted you to see those two."

Prowl and Jazz exchanged looks and smirks. Jazz quickly darted off towards the other side of the jungle gym, clearly the faster of the two. Prowl climbed to the top of the swing set, crouched on the top bar with his doorwings flared. Chromia glanced around, then caught sight of Jazz and sighed.

"Jazz! You'd better get over here! Don't make me have to come chasing after you!" Her tone was stern, but Optimus could see the affection in her optics. Chromia always did have a weak spot for the sparklings. She walked underneath the swing set.

"Attack!" Prowl cried out, and three different sparklings – including Jazz – proceeded to mob Chromia, grabbing hold of her legs and arms and trying to pull her to the ground. Chromia jerked in shock, but laughed as she playfully gave in. Prowl continued to direct the 'attack' from his safe position on the swing set.

Magnus chuckled. "So much for nap time."

Optimus was grinning. "Do they always do this?"

"Not often enough to get boring." Magnus said. "But yes, every now and again they stage a coup. The last time this happened Moonracer was here as well. She got Prowl off the swings, and Jazz attacked her to free Prowl. It turned into a four-on-two battle against nap time."

"Planning and surprise." Optimus said. "I like it."

"I thought you would." Magnus chuckled. "They have the potential to be truly great officers, with a bit of training and guidance."

"The Academy is for the first." Optimus glanced at Magnus. "You have a plan for the second."

"Isn't Elita complaining that it's too quiet without Ratchet around?"

"She won't be complaining about that for much longer when Ratchet and Wheeljack start bringing the Twins around." Optimus shot back, already knowing where this was going. "Besides, we couldn't take on two at once. You know that."

"I do." Magnus agreed. "But I've been planning on taking Jazz in for some time now. I think it's about time Sentinel had a little brother, don't you?"

Optimus couldn't help an undignified snort. "Magnus, no offence, but Sentinel would take about as kindly to that as he would to a virus."

Magnus chuckled. "Perhaps. But with him gone and my mate dead, it gets lonely in the house." he said. "For my peace of mind and Jazz's future, I would like to take him on. Since we live so close together anyway, I thought you'd might like to take on Prowl."

"Keep them together while letting them live out of here." Optimus nodded. "I see the logic." He turned his focus back to the sparklings, who had finally admitted defeat and were slowly following Chromia to their recharge berths. "I will have to think on it."

Magnus nodded, knowing that was the best he was going to get out of Prime today. "Do so." he said softly. "Who knows, Prime? Maybe we all can benefit from them."

Prime chuckled. "That would not surprise me in the least, old friend."