A/N: Think of this as an "introduction," and nothing more. Not that this is a multichaptered story, it's just a plain oneshot on a pairing I wanted to explore before integrating it into my Transformers Animated stories. I consider this practice for writing interactions between these two characters. So, don't take it seriously.
That's right. I paired Cliffjumper and Rosanna. It's a free country. And yes, I feel bound to pair up every femme in the show.
If you think about it, the pairing is quite logical. Rosanna is flamboyant and carefree. Cliffjumper's a little more down-to-earth and openly aggressive. I just think it makes sense, though many may be inclined to disagree.
If I owned Transformers Animated - which I don't - there would be a whole lot of other - you know what, I'm going to screw the disclaimer, because it's obvious I don't own any multi-million dollar corporation. End of story.
It's Not Easy Being Cute
When her boss pointed to the "customer service" desk, Rosanna knew that she was going to love this job.
Sure, the Hall of Records was a bit unusual for a femme of her stature. Before she'd gotten the proper training, she'd been confined to low-income retail shops, where there wasn't much to do besides run the till and ward off lustful looks from mechs. Here, Rosanna felt safe and secure. She could help 'bots and not expect them to suddenly attack her without any provocation.
Rosanna also liked talking to the regulars, though Tap-Out was reasonably intolerant of "unnecessary" greetings and Glyph was often too preoccupied to reply. But when they had the time, they would talk to her. The conversations were rushed, as conversations in the Hall of Records usually were. Most visitors were government workers on a mission, with no interest whatsoever to stop and chat for a few nanoclicks. Then they'd disappear for months after borrowing a record. Not that Rosanna didn't mind. Her boss did.
Then there was Cliffjumper.
He was a stout, red Autobot that stood just a little taller than her. He had a common design that Rosanna was accustomed to seeing from a lot of local Autobots. But what was unusual about him was the expression on his face. It was stern and contorted, like he was either constantly angry, or constantly suppressing said anger.
Frankly, Rosanna wasn't surprised when she heard that Cliffjumper had been detained for questioning following the revelation that Longarm was actually a Decepticon named Shockwave. When he was released, she, again, wasn't surprised. Though filled with rage, Cliffjumper wasn't one of the bad guys. Rosanna prided herself with this knowledge.
Rosanna glanced up when he walked into the Hall of Records carrying a few datapads. He knocked shoulders against a passing Autobot. The Autobot immediately cringed and scurried a few feet away.
'What're you lookin' at?!' Cliffjumper roared.
The Autobot screamed and darted for the exit.
'Ugh, it's him,' a femme standing at the customer service desk muttered. 'He was bad enough before, but now...'
'He's scary?' asked her male companion.
'Slag yeah,' said the femme. 'I mean, he worked under Shockwave. You'd think he would've noticed something.'
Rosanna sighed. Just keep smiling.
'Hi, Cliffjumper!' Rosanna grinned at the approaching mech. The two other visitors diverted their optics as Cliffjumper looked in their direction.
Cliffjumper examined her, up and down. 'Shaddup.'
'Every time a 'bot says that to me, it's followed by the same old comments!' snapped Cliffjumper. 'Oh, sure, it used to be just a friendly greeting! But now, "Hi, Cliffjumper" is always followed by: "Gee, Cliffjumper, you'd think you'd've noticed your boss was a slagging Decepticon traitor!" Also, "Hi, Cliffjumper" could easily be said by a Decepticon in disguise! Do you know how many times my boss said "Hi, Cliffjumper" to me for the past 600 stellar cycles?!'
'Oh, you're so paranoid,' Rosanna giggled.
'Paranoia keeps me on edge! 'Cause next time, I cross a traitor, BAM!' He mimicked punching something. 'They're offline!'
At this point, the two visitors seemed to decide to retreat to a safer distance. Cliffjumper bared his teeth at them.
'Slagging, ragtag lowlifes,' he murmured. He slammed the datapads on the desk. 'I wanna return these.'
'Thank you, Cliffjumper, you wouldn't believe how many records never get returned around here,' beamed Rosanna.
'...What is it?'
'Stop staring at me.'
'Yeah, staring. You're staring at me. I hate it when 'bots stare at me. So stop it, or I'll get your aft fired.'
'I'm not staring.'
'Yes, you are.'
'No, I'm making eye contact.'
'Oh, eye contact?'
'Yes. You look at me, I look at you.'
'YOU'RE STARING!' Cliffjumper shouted.
Some Autobots glanced in their direction, only to quickly return to their respective activities. Cliffjumper cringed and rubbed his optics.
'I need to – I need to borrow some records,' murmured Cliffjumper, 'in relation to the disappearance of Highbrow Prime.'
'No problem!' Rosanna chimed. 'This way.'
He stocked after her as she scooted past several tables filled with Autobots, most of them smirking at the sound of her humming. Cliffjumper looked like he would very much like to shoot her. Obviously he wasn't making any attempt to be tact. Rosanna forced a smile. But it was best to just not jump to any conclusions. He was probably just...a very stressed Autobot. That sounded right.
Arriving at the correct section, Rosanna waved gleefully in the direction of Glyph. The translator vaguely waved back, not taking her eyes off a datapad. Weaving around the tables surrounding hers was Tap-Out, her bodyguard. (Rosanna wasn't too sure what to think of Tap-Out, aside from the fact that he seemed quite preoccupied with protecting Glyph. She also took note of the fact that upon Cliffjumper arrival on the scene, Tap-Out eyed the red 'bot maliciously.)
'Alright, it should be here someplace...' Rosanna muttered thoughtfully. 'Let's see...Hm...'
'For crying out – will you hurry up already?!' urged Cliffjumper.
'Oh, don't worry, I know it's here,' said Rosanna.
Rosanna quickly fetched the ladder, and rolled it over to the location. She ascended it and began looking through the rows upon rows of datapads covering the bookshelf.
'Do you like music?' Rosanna asked.
'Do you like music?' she repeated.
'It might help you relax.'
'Where's that datapad?!'
'Studies show that music helps sooth negative emotions.'
'WHY ARE WE TALKING ABOUT MUSIC?!'
'I'm talking about music,' said Rosanna, 'and for some reason, you seem to be complaining about it.'
'I gotta job to do! Where's that datapad, already?!'
'You can do your job and talk to 'bots at the same time, you know. I do it all the time!'
'You have?' Rosanna perked up. 'That's wonderful! I like it when 'bots notice things! Thank you, Cliffjumper! Oh, wait! Here's that datapad! How did it get in with the section on murdered Autobots...'
Cliffjumper held out his servo. 'Datapad. Now.'
Cliffjumper snatched it clean out of her hands. He stormed off back down the aisle. As he passed a pair of Autobots preoccupied with shuffling through the shelves, he yelled something inaudible at them. They let out small yelps.
'Come back soon!' Rosanna sang off-key.
'I hate you, you know that?!' he shouted back.
Rosanna blinked. '...You're cute when you're in denial!'
All of the nearby Autobots proceeded to snigger, while Cliffjumper increased his pace and was soon gone. Rosanna skipped back to her post. Despite Cliffjumper's attitude, she enjoyed her work. Until and beyond the day he surpassed his anger, she'd keep this smile on her face.