Disclaimer: I do not own Transformers. All recognizable characters are the property of HasTak. All unrecognizable ones are the intellectual property of yours truly; their theft is punishable by severe voodoo-induced pain in any and all sensitive organs of the body, followed by eternal damnation.
Because, you know, stealing is wrong.
Summary: Sparkbearer Saga: Part II. Alien invasions, possessed vehicles, language barriers, government conspiracies, family drama, supermarket tabloids, and tomato wars... Welcome to Earth.
Warnings: mild cursing, mild gore
Author Notes: Alrighty! Welcome to the second installment of the Sparkbearer Saga, Transformers: Schism!
For those who were with Evelyn, Sides, and everyone else during Jux, welcome back, and for those of you who have no clue what I'm talking about, this is the part where you are utterly confused and send me a review along the lines of "Bwa-huh? Who's Evelyn?"
But that's cool. Just head to my profile and scroll down to Transformers: Juxtaposition and start from the beginning. Cheers!
Okay, with the newbies safely tucked away, let's get this show on the road.
Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the western spiral
arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun. Orbiting this at a distance
of roughly ninety-two million miles is an utterly insignificant little blue green
planet whose ape-descended life forms are so amazingly primitive that
they still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea.
- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams
Evelyn cringed inwardly. Jamie Burke, her best friend since the days of Duck, Duck, Goose and Patty-Cake, peered up at her with her eyebrows quirked just so. Combined with the tone of her voice, that little quirk clearly said that the taller woman was one evasive answer away from demonstrating just how much she had learned from her college jujitsu classes, and Evelyn was looking like a tempting volunteer.
"What in God's good name is that monstrosity in the parkin' lot, and just how long d'you have until the Back to the Future people come a-huntin' for you?"
The café was a quaint little place on the edge of the Mason City College campus, ideal for students who enjoyed mixing study breaks with lunch breaks. At the moment, it was crowded to the brim with people seeking to escape the biting chill of winter outside.
Jamie came for the chicken salad. Evelyn came because Jamie would have pummeled her if she hadn't.
She was all-too-aware of the abnormal silence around the dining room, especially at the tables nearest to the front windows that viewed the parking lot… and the sleek red sports car that seemed to be holding court at its center.
She slid into a chair, feeling the warm beginnings of what could grow to be a spectacular blush, and murmured, "That… would be a Lamborghini Countach."
The quirk vanished, because Jamie's eyebrows had suddenly rocketed skywards.
Evelyn's 'shhh!' came too late. There was a delighted crow from behind her, and one of the college boys bolted to his feet, pointing at his companions.
"I told you! Ha, eat that. I told you that was a Lambo! God damn!"
Evelyn scowled over her shoulder when the boy's language escalated, but she nearly leapt out of her skin at Jamie's sergeant-major bark of, "Watch your mouth, Richards!"
The boy froze, blinked over at their table, and paled drastically.
"Er… hi, Professor Burke."
"What did your mama teach you about cussin'?"
"… not to?"
"And what do you want to say to the nice people in here you just upset with that mouth?"
"Are you askin' me or tellin' me, Richards?"
Gulping, the boy straightened to something not unlike parade-ground rest. "Telling, ma'am."
"Let's try that again, then. What do you say?"
"I'm sorry for my language."
"Good boy. Finish your lunch."
Muffled snickers drifted around the café, mostly from the boy's companions, and Evelyn stared at her friend. Jamie took a sip of her tea and arched an eyebrow at her.
"God, I've missed you so much."
"What are you going to do, then?"
With scarves snuggly wrapped around their necks and hands tucked deeply into jacket pockets to protect them from the biting January chill, the two women wandered absently through the meandering paths of the college campus. Most of the trees were bare, bleak skeletons, the grass dried and brown. The only people out and about were bundled so securely against the winter cold that they looked like brightly-wrapped mummies scurrying around the grounds.
Evelyn sighed a sigh that seemed to come all the way from the soles of her feet, blowing out a gust of steam that swirled around her and vanished. With her current problem back in the forefront of her mind, the overcast sky and fickle, biting winds suited her mood all-too-well, even with Jamie's presence to soothe her.
The dean's words echoed through her mind.
"Evelyn, you vanished for over a year without any sort of contact or explanation. You left your responsibilities to be taken up by your fellow professors. You let down your colleagues and your students. No matter what kind of excuse you produce, there's no way that we can accept you back. You know that."
Eyes stinging from more than the wind, she bit her cheek and looked away from Jamie's sympathetic frown.
It's not fair, she thought bleakly.
"I wonder what Burger King's paying multi-lingual drive-thru workers now," she joked.
"Don't be thick. You've got more sense in your hind parts than most folks do in their whole bodies. Until someone actually invents a Universal Translator, there's gonna be plenty of people that need someone like you."
"Oh, you Trekkie, you."
"I'm already off most of those lists, Jamie. My little… vacation… isn't exactly a sterling recommendation. Who's going to hire me if they think I'm going to up and disappear on them at any moment?"
Jamie stopped walking and glowered at her. "Are you?"
Evelyn stopped as well. She wanted to say, Of course not, but that wasn't true, was it?
At last, she murmured, "I don't know."
Jamie's lips drew tightly together for a moment, a faint wrinkle appearing between her eyebrows, and she sighed through her nose like a bull spotting a red flag.
"At least you're honest," she growled at last. "Except for that load of horse-hockey you tried to feed me last month about witness protection."
It was Evelyn's turn to frown.
"You did slap me for that, remember?"
Jamie had the decency to blush.
Evelyn continued, "I told you what I could. I told you exactly what I told mama. You think I would lie about something that wasn't important? I'll tell you what I can, when I can, and there's nothing that will change that, okay?"
"Fine, fine." Far from mollified, Jamie waved one hand as though banishing the entire conversation. "Pull in those claws. I'm sorry."
"I don't know. For slapping you?"
"Are you asking me or telling me, Burke?"
"… Hush, you."
Evelyn chuckled and threaded her arm through Jamie's, and together they walked back toward the café. Parked parallel along the street that separated the campus from downtown, a cherry-red Lamborghini gleamed proudly against the winter-gray of the city.
"This is my stop," said Evelyn. "I'll see you soon, okay?"
Jamie stared at the car, at Evelyn, and at the café across the street. "Didn't you park at the café?"
"I would have sworn…"
"Don't be silly. You think the car drove itself over here to wait for me or something?"
"Then what are we talking about? Cars that drive themselves? That's just crazy."
A/N: Okay, before everyone gets up in arms, I will say this up front: I am in school now. I'm taking 19 hours at the local college as well as working to fund at least my gas and credit card bill. That doesn't leave much time for writing, but I will be working on this.
(It's been so long since I've gone on a good fanfiction binge that I've forgotten how most of my favorite stories on here go, so now I can read them all again. :3 Fodder for the plotbunnies!)