Fandom: Transformers Bayverse
Author: gatekat and femme4jack on LJ
Pairing: Skywarp/Starscream/adult Annabelle Lennox
Rating: NC-17 for mech/mech/female
Codes: Het, Slash, Xeno (Transformer/Human), First Time
Summary: More than a century after arriving on Earth, Starscream's processors have been mostly unscrambled by Ratchet, and the Seeker experiences his first willing socket charge.
Notes: A gift for nessus for all the reviews, comments, artwork and general encouragement. Not that we didn't think this was a wonderful idea anyway.
Written in the Dathanna de Gray fanverse (community .livejournal .com/ tf_socket_fics)
"text" translated Cybertronian.
"text" organic languages
~text~ bond talk
::text:: comm chatter


Starscream's Belle


System check complete.

Boot primary CPU.

The moment he cycled to awareness, Starscream kept his chassis perfectly still and his power consumption minimal to hide his true state. He was strapped down, his weapons off-line, but otherwise he was functioning better than in a very long time.

Memory files booted, and his processors struggled to make sense of it. The last thing he remembered was that psychotic Autobot CMO getting up close and personal, then everything went black.

The all too familiar voice of that same CMO greeted him.

"I know you are online, Starscream. How do you feel?"

"I'm strapped down, my weapons are off line, most have been removed and I'm a prisoner. How do you think I feel," he snapped, powering his optics up to glare at the red and white mech leaning over him. At least the fragger had finally managed to get a paintjob less abusive to the optics.

Ratchet vented in amusement. "Well, next time we capture you, I'll be sure we treat you as the honored guest you are and give you the VIP suite. I wasn't asking about your emotional state, Winglord. How do your systems feel?"

The use of his title, one his own Seekers rarely used anymore, stilled the next retort before it was voiced and brought a full systems review.

"Your reputation is safe," he grumbled, testing the restraints more directly. "Why?"

"Because, with the agreement of your trine," Ratchet explained firmly but gently, "I have spent the last vorn repairing major processor damage that nearly destroyed your core programming. Can you feel the difference?"

Starscream scowled, already plotting ways to make Skywarp and Thundercracker pay, only to find protocols objecting more strenuously to that plan than his processors normally would object to letting an Autobot escape. "What major processor damage?"

"The extreme damage to your processors from generator charging while remaining partially online. Would you like the file?" Ratchet offered.

"Generators don't do damage," he countered, even as he accepted the data transfer. It was only after it had downloaded that he wondered why he'd accepted it. "Autobot propaganda."

"They do damage your processors if you remain online in any manner, which it is obvious you have for a very long time," Ratchet insisted with far more patience than he was rumored to have. "We would never have known about the damage if your Vision had not sent us word of it. Even offline, generators damage a spark over time. You have been receiving medical charges throughout the last vorn to being to correct some of that."

As much as he didn't want to admit to it, Starscream could feel the responses of Winglord protocols kicking in again, even though they had never fully integrate and had fallen offline shortly after he joined Megatron. Respect responded with respect. Healers were above all in their domain, even the Lord Prime ... when the pit did he start thinking of him as Lord again?

Above him, he could see the CMO watching his thought processes. He was so slagged.

"Yes," he eventually murmured. "Stronger, pre-war protocols ... you reset me! Do you have any idea ... never mind. Who's Air Commander now?"

"Thundercracker was appointed," Ratchet answered. "Though my understanding is that Megatron is quite disappointed in him after the several 'failed' recovery attempts he made to retrieve his Winglord. Your trine and a few others have been charging with NEST sockets on a regular basis through an approved catch and release program," Ratchet added with only a hint of smug humor.

Starscream cycled his optics several times as he tried to work that into some sense of reality.

"If all this is true, I will to speak with my trine," Starscream demanded.

"You must realize that Megatron will have no sympathy for someone who has been in our custody for a vorn suddenly emerging, and that your trine is walking a very fine line with him right now," Ratchet explained patiently. "But nothing is stopping you from speaking to them through your bond. I'm aware that you haven't opened it to them since shortly after the destruction of Vos, but it is still there."

The Seeker worked his jaw several times in frustration, anger and embarrassment. Eventually he settled and focused inward, very cautiously unlocking the shields around the trine bond. First just enough to ensure that both of the others were alive and healthy, then enough to ping them for a automatic status report to let them know he was on line, functioning and wanted their attention.

~Starscream?~ Skywarp responded first, sounding equal parts hopeful, ashamed, and resigned.

~Is what this medic says true, my Vision?~ He responded in a formal manner and tone that the trine almost never used, even in formal situations.

~All of it, my Winglord and Order,~ Skywarp replied just as formally, tentatively reaching out to feel his bonded, who finally felt again like the Seeker he had formed a trine with. He pulled a reluctant Thundercracker into the bond. Their Action had been full of doubts and guilt about allowing their Order to be in Autobot hands for so long.

~We have defended your place while you healed, my Winglord,~ Thundercracker spoke up. ~The Seekers are yours to command.~

Starscream stewed on that for a long moment before cautiously unlocking the rest of the bond. ~When was the last time we were a true trine?~ he asked softly.

Skywarp and Thundercracker answered as one, ~not since the destruction of Vos.~

There was a long, disturbed silence as Starscream processed what he'd already known but refused to accept as truth.

~What deal did you make with The Medic?~

~That we would allow the Autobots to capture you and give them a vorn to fix you, or return you to us,~ Skywarp explained. ~What happens now is up to you, provided they keep their word. Ratchet informed us that there are still continuing repairs that you need, but that you are capable of making decisions free of the damage caused by the generators now.~

~What is the status of the war and Megatron?~ Starscream asked, mulling over his functioning under his new protocol priority structure and finding it an uncomfortable fit. Not even denial could make his previous actions any less than those of an insane mech.

~Megatron is...not sane. Even more so than before. We should have retreated from this system long ago to make repairs, gather our forces,~ Thundercracker admitted. ~There are other systems far more valuable than this one. He is obsessed with obtaining the organic with the Allspark energy, and Prime has claimed the human. Sockets are next to impossible to capture with the core kernel virus that we all have thanks to Jazz. Our attempts to capture him have...well...not gone well, though Megatron is not aware of the true reasons behind that.~

~Have you done anything other than survive?~ Starscream asked as he mulled things over. ~On the assumption that this went well, or I never came on line again.~

~We've quietly been settling Seekers on a moon base hidden well by a gas giant in a nearby system. Neither Prime nor Megatron are aware of their presence. They await your orders, whether to continue Megatron's cause, or ... other options,~ Thundercracker reported with enough confidence that Starscream was sure there were enough Seekers to wreck havoc on either side, or take over the Decepticons for themselves.

~Good,~ Starscream felt himself relax. ~Any Seekerlings there? I can feel several near me.~

~The generator charging has taken its toll, Winglord, and we only have two sockets between us all,~ Skywarp replied with regret. ~There are only two Seekerlings who have survived to birth, of dozen that were sparked. The Seekerlings you feel are those of the Autobot halfbreed. She carried six. Sunstreaker, Sideswipe, Jazz, and Treadbolt are the sires. She apparently is already showing signs of a mating cycle again.~

Grief stilled the bond for a long moment as Starscream off lined his optics at the news of the lost ones, even as his spark thrilled at the news of those that survived.

~Skywarp, my Vision, is there a way to repair the damage?~

~I believe so, Winglord. Though you may not be particularly happy with how,~ Skywarp began. ~We need sockets, and we need them now, which in this system means humans or one of the other socket quality species on this planet. We have the numbers to come and take them by force, but I have been researching their energy for...longer than you have been under Ratchet's care. Willing sockets who allow themselves to be claimed provide the best energy, and will repair the damage most quickly. We also need to...widen our pool to those who have been charging with sockets long term, Seeker, aerial or grounder. We all know that there truly is no such thing as a Seeker half breed, no matter what the prejudices of our code say. If a Seekerling is carried by a Seeker, its core programming and frame will be Seeker, and will knows what it is.~

~If it means we survive,~ Starscream growled, a deep, angry rumble that vibrated his full frame and made his wings quiver. ~Aerials are still better than grounders. Autobot Seekers...~ he vented and focused on what his Vision had said. ~We will discuss this after I have inspected our ranks.~

~There is one other item, my Winglord,~ Thundercracker began nervously. ~There are unclaimed, experienced human sockets who have agreed assist us if we pledge neutrality. Right now they are not aware of how many of 'us' that entails. I am certain Prime will bring it up with you.~

~Right,~ Starscream rumbled, then focused outward to Ratchet. "So when are you going to release me?"

"As soon as you have properly charged. Your spark is still weak, and medical charges only do so much. Obviously we do not have generators here" Ratchet said easily, though he watched Starscream's reaction closely.

The Seeker glared at him, testing the bindings once more. "You are not going to have me pleasure a fleshbag while I'm still bound."

Ratchet gave his one time enemy a devious look. "I share with mine while I'm bound quite frequently, but I doubt you are quite up for her type," he deadpanned while signaling the release of Starscream's restrains.

"I always knew you were broken in the processors," Starscream smirked as he sat up, moving slowly and flexing each joint, one at a time, to ensure that his long stint in medical stasis hadn't done damage his systems wasn't picking up. "When do I get my weapons back?"

"Skywarp has them. We turned them over to him when you were captured." Ratchet looked Starscream directly in the optics and continued, "If you check your files under Autobot sharing protocols, you'll find the parameters you must abide to while sharing. They are the same protocols all of us have coded, and which your Trine agreed to as well for the catch and release program. We have an experienced socket volunteer ready whenever you are. Her name is Annabelle Lennox, if that means anything to you. Her guardian will be supervising."

"The walking cannon," he grumbled, glaring at the medic. "You fixed me up just to get me slagged? Where's Jazz?"

"Ironhide won't do a thing to you as long as you treat his Belle right." Ratchet replied nonchalantly. "She volunteered because she has charged your trine as well as our resident Seekers, and knows what to expect both from your frametype and from first timers. Be sure to carefully review the file on shielding, or Ironhide will slag you. Jazz is watching us, as I'm sure you guessed. Do you wish to speak with him?"

"Not if I can help it," he snorted out his side vents. "I just like knowing where the spark-eater is. The sooner I do this socket, the sooner I fly."

"Do this right," Ratchet warned. "Or I'll make you do it again with Jazz's socket and Jazz as overseer, understood? I want you to have a high quality charge before I let you go."

"Got it. I'll be nice to the female," Starscream sneered and flexed wings that ached from long disuse. Despite the tone and posture, none of the mechs watching doubted he meant it. "I assume from the files and new protocols that you've made the required upgrades to do this your way."

"Cables, socket-adjustable spike, yes, though Annabelle will be perfectly comfortable with cable only if you can't handle using a spike for what it was intended for," Ratchet chuckled.

"We had them before you did, just not this kind," Starscream huffed. "Seekers were designed to breed." He abruptly snapped his mouth shut as his wings swept up and forward to locked with a tension that had to be painful.

Against his preferred nature, Ratchet didn't tease the Seeker that he'd just claimed with pride that his kind were designed after organics. He suspected it was more true than anyone had ever realized after over a vorn of experience with a very young adult and her Seekerlings, all with effectively unedited core code.

"I have the shields in place," Starscream forced his wings to relax and extended a connector cable from his wrist. "Bring her in."


Annabelle gave a long suffering sigh as Ironhide tried yet again to talk her out of 'her glitched desire to get herself slagged by fragging Seekers just for the thrill of a dangerous share.' Oh, it had gone over so well in her household when she had been among the first NEST-trained sockets to volunteer a vorn ago for the catch and release program, aka Make Love Not War. And now she had volunteered to be Starscream's first, which thrilled her but had her parents and their mech ready to fritz. Chromia had been the only one who had seemed to understand and respect her decision.

~Hide,~ she chided through the cable he was currently connected to her with, ~I've shared with Seekers with no other protections than the ones Jazz programmed into my nanites. The only thing I'm worried about this time is the fact that you might lose your temper.~

~If he hurts you, you're damn right I'm going to lose my temper and slag that glitch-head to scrap metal, medbay prisoner or not,~ Ironhide growled. ~That's Starscream in there, the reason the Seekers went Con in the first place. He's not one of those weird ones you shared with, and I still don't like that you do. Starscream!~

~Just remember, big guy, if Starscream enjoys this enough, and Ratchet's repairs are as good as he claims they are, then he could effectively end the war for us, so please behave yourself and don't be too hard on him. I want to make a good impression.~ Annabelle stroked her guardian's neck.

::I'll keep him calm, little one,:: Chromia rumbled over the comm over which Ironhide had obviously been simultaneously ranting to his mate. ::You are being very brave.::

::It is my heritage,:: Annabelle smiled over at the femme, a femme that she felt very close to as well.

::If you're done arguing out there, he's ready,:: Ratchet broke into the frequency.

::Go win the battle, little one. You are as fierce as they come,:: Chromia comm-ed her as they walked into the medbay, Ironhide still muttering.

"Hello Ratchet, how is your favorite patient doing?" Annabelle asked pleasantly as they entered the main portion of Medbay.

"Quite well, all things considering. He did not put up nearly as much a fuss as I expected. As far as Starscream goes, he was downright friendly and sane," Ratchet smiled at her. "He is waiting for you in the secured private room. We will be watching from the next room, and can get in immediately if you have any problems."

"Enjoy watching," she gave a nervous laugh. "I hope it is a good show."

"It always is," Ironhide rumbled hotly with a brush of proud affection despite his fuming that she was going to be touched by that Con.

Ratchet held out his hands and accepted the precious cargo to take into the room with Starscream while Chromia pulled her mate towards the adjoining room to watch.

When Ratchet entered the Seeker's room, he found Starscream had moved the berth so he could sit on it and lean against a wall without his wings encountering a corner.

"So this is Annabelle," Starscream considered the delicate looking blond human female dressed in bright feathers and sheer fabric that hid nothing. Despite organic frailties, he had no doubt that she was as tough to stop as her sire and as stubborn as her guardian.

"Hello Winglord, it's a pleasure to see you functioning," Annabelle said with relaxed politeness as Ratchet placed her on the berth with a stroke to her back before turning to leave them alone.

Starscream cocked his head slightly and regarded the strange little fleshbag that knew full well who and what he was but was not afraid of him.

"Not many would think that," he said and reached out to pick her up, his sensors locked on her, analyzing both her and his own unfamiliar response to her. The desire was intense, stronger even than when Skywarp had last been ready to carry. Now when was the last time that thought had crossed his processors?

"Considering how many times I've seen you in the last vorn not functioning, and the fact that I gave you several medical charges during that period, it is a pleasure. Your trine will certainly be pleased," she said comfortably self-assured. His cable was already extended, and she took it without hesitation and plugged in.

She felt him startle at the sudden, intimate contact, though he controlled himself, and the reflexive revulsion, quickly.

~Would you like for me to offer you some options on how we can do this, or do you want to figure that out for yourself?~ she asked when she felt the connection settle, already breathless at the intense power she felt in him, a Seeker who owned the skies by birthright and victory. He was far more powerful than any of his kin that she'd been with, though Thundercracker and Skywarp came close.

He considered the question-offer, considered the consequences of making a mistake and just how much he knew about what to do from the files. It seemed simple enough, and unsettling familiar in many ways.

~I think I get the basics,~ he decided and extended several of the new cables from his wrists. They homed in on the primary erogenous zones with little finesse, but enough care not to hurt.

He felt the human make an effort to relax and enjoy the touch, as well as her gentle suggestion that he stimulate her through the cable slowly as well, as a slow buildup led to a better charge. He also could clearly feel her holding back on her desire to touch him intimately, small fingers caressing places that mechs could not easily reach. She was uncertain whether her touch would be welcomed or met with disgust. Above all, her sensed her confidence of purpose in freely giving him something he had never had before.

Against all expectations that he had of himself, Starscream felt himself going with her wishes, stimulating nerves directly and using what he felt of her sensations to guide the cables stroking her. He found if he was careful about not thinking too much, he could almost convince himself that this was a more desirable berthmate. It made it easier to relax and do what he needed to.

~Touch, if you want,~ he decided randomly, no longer fighting to understand what the new socket protocols were prompting from him.

The human gave a moan of appreciation as her body began responding to his untrained efforts that were growing in confidence. She slipped her dress off around her feet and kicked it to floor, coaxing him to place her where she could pleasure his wings and feel the heat of his frame on her soft, naked, and oh so vulnerable flesh.

The very first slip of her fingers into the fine seams of his ailerons brought a burst of intense pleasure, shock at the sensation and a deep, shuddering moan. His head nearly fell back, his processors scrambling to recall any previous touch that felt that good. All were so distant that may well have belonged to another mech. He wanted his trine here, desperately. Wanted to feel their claws, feel the burn of their heat against his plating, the slide of spike and valve and keens of overload.

Annabelle gave an intense shudder of pleasure, moaning again at the feedback she received through the socket. At first it shocked Starscream that his own sensations would create such a strong response in her, of pleasure so intense that it was almost pain. ~It feels amazing, and I would love to feel you with them,~ her mind whispered, ~but don't forget to shield, or it will be too much for me.~ She cautioned as she pressed her whole tiny body against his gigantic wings, drinking up his heat and boldly caressing the sensor rich surface with her stretched out arms.

~Shield, right,~ he gasped out loud and reinforced those protocols. Then he turned his attention to something else he hadn't done in ages and pulled up memories of his early self exploration as a mechling. Clawed fingers ghosted down his chassis, tapping and sliding against large sensor node clusters and Cybertronian glass. Along with watching what the sensations he caused in himself did to her, he cautiously explored the idea of feeling her valve around his spike.

With a touch of curiosity, he let the thought drift to her, just to see how she'd respond to it.

Fierce desire and lust so strong that her whole body seemed to convulse was the answer, her heart rate skyrocketing in anticipation of being filled, taken, claimed by someone powerful, sexy and dangerous, along with a sharp mental image of her desire to pleasure his spike first, in its full size.

His vents stalled, stuttering for a moment as the new socket protection protocols warned him that no matter what she thought about the idea, it was absolutely not to be done.

"Are you trying to get my processors flash fried?" He snarled as he came back on level, assuring the protocols that he got the point and wouldn't try to spike her at anywhere near full size.

~Sorry,~ she responded, surprised and contrite at the intensity of his reaction. ~I only wanted to play with your spike before you re-sized. It's something I've done a lot. I had no idea it would touch off your protocols. It shouldn't. Only doing something that would actually hurt me.~

The explanation drew a groan from him, his processors immediately coaxing him to drop one hand to his interface panel. He only rubbed it at first, teasing himself as he teased her. It wasn't long before he slid it back and turned his attention to teasing a spike out of its housing that hadn't been used for pleasure in far too long. Resisting the urge to simple order it to pressurize as he would when putting a Decepticon in their place, he drew in a sharp ventilation and plucked Annabelle from his shoulder to place her on her feet between his spread pedes.

~You may pleasure my spike,~ he slid his hands away, resting them on his knees as he looked down with intense red optics.

The blond human set to work on him with knowing hands, mouth and body to pressurize the sensor rich surface that was as large as she was. She moaning and shuddered at the feedback every time a sensor was lit. The Seeker should have been revolted, having this insect, this meat-sack touching him in this way, but instead he felt each burst of their combined pleasure flow into a suddenly ravenous spark.

He let his head fall back with a deep, rumbling moan. The keen, plotting intellect that was his sparkright as an Order, a trine leader, watched with fascination how much like hardline interfacing this was - pleasuring the other to make direct pleasure for oneself. What his spark was up to was disturbing, but he trusted his trine, and on a very basic level, he trusted Ratchet when it came to medical matters.

Annabelle scrambled up the Winglord's chassis to stand on his pelvic armor above his spike. Starscream could clearly read in her unprotected mind that like all but a few of the sockets she knew, she had a size kink as large as Starscream himself, and was indulging it thoroughly as she used every sense to enjoy him. She rubbed her body on the hot metal, inserting her tongue in the hole at the top to feel sensor nodes and taste the fluid that was starting to coat his tip. She inhaled deeply a scent that she had come to associate with Seeker. Not a hint of the smell or taste of fuel as non-sockets might have assumed. It was an ozone scent of power, of mastery of the wind and the sky.

It all fed into Starscream's innate ego and hardcoded beliefs of himself and his kind. Despite an ever more intense desire to thrust upwards, to hold another as he took them for his own pleasure, the new protocols and his spark being fed in such an erotic, pleasurable way held him back. It took him to a place he'd been very early in his life when his favorite interfacing was to have his berthmate do all the work while he relaxed back and enjoyed being worshiped for the exquisitely perfect example of Seeker Order that he was.

It was something Annabelle seemed to understand and appreciate about him perfectly as she worshiped his frame with her body, every sensation feeding back into her to create louder moans and cries of primal pleasure while he was doing nothing but enjoy and permit her to feel the sensations. Despite the obviously oversized ego she had that was so typical of her species, she had no qualms about seeing him for who he was, the Winglord who had come to his position because he earned it and fully deserved to be seen as the best of his kind, and whom she believed without reservation would return Seekers the greatness and honor they had lost in Megatron's madness. In a flash he perceived that she had this confidence due to her frequent charging of his trine. *They* believed in him.

That, the thought of his trine and this pleasure, sent a rush of heat through his systems and he reached out for them without realizing it.

~I ... I can come,~ Skywarp responded hesitantly.

~Yesss!~ Starscream hissed into a deep moan.

A moment later the black and purple Seeker appeared in front of him and knelt on one knee, his wings swept down and back as far as they could go in a ritual display of respect.

"Stand and serve me," Starscream trilled in the musical dialect of Vos and their kind.

"My spark exists to serve my Winglord," Skywarp gave the ritual reply, his voice heavy with emotion. He stood and with a look at Annabelle, who nodded in permission, merged his cable with Starscream's with a formal sense of gratitude to the familiar socket for how well she was feeding the hungry spark of his trine leader and the pleasure she was giving to his Order's frame.

They were momentarily distracted by the sounds of Ironhide attempting to enter to room, only to be held back by Chromia, Jazz, Ratchet and Prime. The cannon on legs obviously was none too happy about seeing his fleshling in a room with two Seekers, including one who could teleport away with her, no matter that Skywarp had cleared his arrival with Prime.

~He can't help himself,~ she laughed. ~I'll always be his little warrior princess.~

~And I'll always make him incredibly nervous,~ Skywarp snickered uncharacteristically. ~I had a sense of humor once, my Order,~ he responded to Starscream's unvoiced curiosity. ~I was social once as well,~ he added and reached to stroke the broad expanses of his leader's wings, drawing a throaty moan from the bronze Seeker. ~When you return, I am ready to carry again,~ he offered shyly.

Glowing red optics widened in shock at the very possibility being voiced to him.

~Our sparks are strong and healthy, yours will be soon,~ Skywarp continued, plowing ahead before he lost his nerve. ~Think of the boost it would be to our kind, seeing the Winglord's Vision heavy with Seekerlings once more.~

Starscream made a sound that was nearly a whimper, and the two connected to him felt the intense yesPrimus-youwould? begin a cascade of conflicting needs in his processors, most centered on little mechs with wings in the colors of his trine. His expression softened from the initial shock.

Annabelle paused in her efforts, aware of something significant happening between the two, though she was well-shielded from whatever it was.

~We've only been waiting for you to be ready,~ Skywarp crooned before applying his glossa to his leader's moist valve.

~We will speak together about it, all three of us, when I can leave this wretched base.~ Starscream noticeably not including Annabelle in that assessment as he gave her a mental nudge to continue. It would feel like an order to her, but from him, it was as close as he came to a gentle request.

Skywarp hummed and trilled wordless sounds of pleasure. His hands moved to the inside of Starscream's upper pedes and began to tease them, adding that pleasure to his glossa and the human's efforts. Her body spasmed as she was freely fed the sensations of Skywarp's knowledgeable glossa that made Starscream tremble with bliss. Annabelle renewed her efforts with urgency despite the delicious distraction. She wanted to be claimed and filled by the powerful, arrogant creature underneath her tiny form. She wantonly rubbed her slick entrance and her clit against a node near the base of his spike, wrapping her legs and arms around him.

A clawed hand reached forward and wrapped around Skywarp's helm and the other gripped the berth as his spike resized for her.

~The time to tease him is up,~ Skywarp told her helpfully. ~With me, he'd have already slammed me on my back and spread me wide,~ he shivered in memories of those moments.

~I'd give a lot to see and feel that. Spread wide is just what I want to be,~ she breathlessly answered before wrapping the perfectly thick, human-sized spike in her hand and guiding it between her thighs.

~Shall I ride you, Winglord?~ she asked, meeting Skywarp's optics and then turning so should could face Starscream's fierce gaze with her own wild desire.

"Yes," he hissed into a keen of ecstasy as his spike was enveloped by her slick warmth, a pleasure intensely familiar and nearly all consuming rushed through him from his spike, his valve and his spark.

Annabelle's gasps and cries echoed through the room as she began to move on him. Her entire world narrowed to three things. The spike she rode, the valve Skywarp pleasured, and the beautiful and terrible spark that was consuming her pleasure from it all like something gone mad with hunger. Even shielded the intensity was just a breath shy of too much.

~It's good, isn't it, my Winglord?~ Skywarp crooned, delving his glossa into the valve before him. ~Isn't it worth it, for such better energy and pleasure?~

Starscream shuddered, his hips rocking into her motions. He couldn't answer, not in words, as his spark gorged on her and his spike was only nanokliks shy of triggering a potent overload.

~So good ... your spark ... so hungry. It feels fantastic to feed,~ Annabelle barely managed to say as her cries changed pitch, announcing to any audios in range that the energy building in her had finally burst, happily taking the Winglord over the edge with her.

Only Skywarp remained relatively self-controlled as he shunted nearly all the energy to his leader. He kept his hands firmly on Starscream's upper pedes, keeping him from thrusting too violently. He couldn't say humans were his favorite socket race, but he did like this one well enough.

With a series of gasping ventilations, Starscream rebooted his optics and looked down at the overload loopy human on his very tiny spike and the face of his trinemate grinning up at him.

~It okay?~he gestured at the flesh creature with his chin.

~Oh yes, quiet all right,~ Skywarp grinned wider and reached forward to pick her up gently, allowing his leader to bring his equipment back to normal size. ::Hey, Ratchet. Can he go now?::

Ratchet entered the room, not bothering to hide his smile as he scanned his patient and took a blissed out Annabelle from Skywarp.

"Looks good, but Prime wishes to speak with you before you go, Winglord," Ratchet said with good humor and a hint of respect that neither Seeker expected. "You will want to continue charging regularly. Shall we continue to meet your needs in the usual manner? I'm certain I know of at least one socket who will thoroughly look forward to being caught."

Starscream looked from medic to the pleading features still between his legs and vented a resigned sigh. "Until we find a more suitable race, your humans will do," he grumbled, though it contained what both Skywarp and Ratchet wanted; an implicit statement that he would continue to charge. "Just how often is that needed?"

"Frag," Skywarp hissed out of nowhere. "Sorry, my Winglord, but until it's officially over, I still have to answer his call."

"Go, my Vision," Starscream's voice was honestly tender as he stroked Skywarp's cheek. "We will destroy him soon."

A small nod and Skywarp stood to step back, and was gone.

"Considering the amount of damage, I would advise at least once every decaorn for some time, though it would be better to simply find one who will stay with you, and charge regularly as you interface with your trine." Ratchet advised, stroking Annabelle's back.

"I'm certainly relieved that 'humans will do,'" Annabelle said with an exasperated sigh, making it quite clear that she understood everything that was going on.

Starscream nodded and gave the human a curious look as he stood and put himself to rights with a polishing cloth Ratchet tossed him. "Do you understand only Autobot, or other dialects as well?" He looked directly at her.

"I'm most fluent in Autobot and high Cybertronian. I'm studying Decepticon and Seeker and am improving in my comprehension. Obviously, humans don't have the capacity to speak any of the dialects, but many of us are now highly fluent in comprehension," she said with pride.

Starscream made a noncommittal sound that made Ratchet suppress a snicker. He looked down at himself, at the condition of his finish and vented again, debating whether to demand a proper detailing or to just get it over with so he could get the frag out of there. Knowing them, they'd probably have the human do it, just to watch him overload at its ridiculously skillful hands again. It *shouldn't* have felt that good.

His desire to leave won out over his pride and twinge of desire. "I'm ready to speak with Prime."

The Autobot leader entered from the adjoining room almost immediately. He looked first to Annabelle.

"You have my gratitude for sharing with the Winglord, little one," he vibrated the very air with his resonant voice.

"It was my pleasure, Lord Prime," Belle responded with a devious smile, her use of his formal title sounding utterly suggestion. Both Prime and Ratchet chuckled as the medic exited by the same door. Before it even slid shut, Starscream saw the human's guardian grab her like some ridiculous nursery bot.

"One would think he would be used to her with Seekers by now," Starscream smirked at the scene before turning his full apparent focus to Prime, though he spared a fair amount of attention to his processors and protocols for any changes in response to the Autobot leader.

Optimus regarded Starscream for a moment, as though trying to sense for himself the differences.

When he spoke, it was in the Seeker dialect, and it sounded ... almost fond. "He will *never* get used to it, but he wouldn't be the guardian he is if he did. I am pleased to see you functioning, Winglord of Cybertron. I am sure your trine will be glad to have you return."

"I will be pleased to be among my own as well," he responded stiffly, honestly not sure what to make of this mech whom he'd been enemies with for so long. Memories of what it had been like to speak with the Lord Prime were distant at best, and he'd never liked the mech. "What do you want to talk about?"

Prime gave a relaxed smile. "The future, Starscream, and what your role in it will be. It isn't like I'm expecting you to become a good Autobot out of gratitude to Ratchet, after all."

"Huh, so you have some common sense after all," he didn't stop the smirk or snicker. "I'll listen to what you want, but a dialog will have to be after I know what's going on," he motioned to the universe at large. "My trine has apparently been busy while you've had me here."

"Yes, we are aware of the moon base in the Lalande system, and how many Seekers have gathered there. It was a wise move on your Trine's part," Optimus said with the same patient and relaxed posture and tone. "There are a few things I would like for you to consider while you are away, for the survival of our kind. The Allspark is gone, even with the energy in Sam. We have determined that Primus does not intend to send new sparks through him. Three grounders have carried successfully, and I'm sure you can sense the Seekerlings we have on base. Your Seekers will not have the same success in carrying until your trines change how they charge."

Starscream nodded his understanding.

"We have humans who are willing to go, to help you start the next generation. Not many, but enough to make a difference for you until you find sockets of your own or convince them to stay. I only ask for you to help us put an end to the extinction of our species, whether through neutrality, or by finally doing what you have always claimed to desire - take out Megatron and take control of the Decepticons, and end this war while there are still enough of us to create a new generation."

Prime's weariness, tinged with hope was more than evident as he spoke.

"In a vorn, have any of the catch and release subjects wanted to remain with anyone?" Starscream asked cautiously.

Prime considered his question for a moment. "There have been several repeat volunteers, including Annabelle Lennox. I am not certain they would wish to remain long term, though they would certainly be open to being courted. There are also humans who are less independent-minded whom we have found for our mechs not inclined to treat organics as equals. As long as you would guarantee they would be treated well and went to you under the same conditions as our own, we could assist you in making the arrangements with their families."

That got Starscream's attention and his wings flicked in interest. "Treat well ... Skywarp knows exactly what that means to you?"

"Yes," Prime nodded. "He, Thundercracker, myself, Jazz, Prowl and Ratchet have discussed at length the options and my expectations for each."

He paused, sure that the Seeker was conferring with his trine on the basics and a few details. When red optics focused fully again, he watched with relief that Starscream hadn't tensed.

"There are a few trines that can be trusted with that duty," Starscream decided. "Skywarp's expressing interest in the more violent types ... Wolfkat? He seems to think that several trines would charge better with her way than by pleasure. I agree."

"I will speak with Wolfkat to see if she is willing. At this point, she is the only one who can produce enough energy through sensual violent fantasy rather than sexual. She is a warrior in her own right, and will demand a certain level of respect from those she shares with," he cautioned.

"I understand," the Seeker dipped his wings fractionally in the first act of respect towards Prime in a very, very long time. "It is something to look for. Seekers have never had sockets. We may choose not to once all are healthy again. I still don't believe the extended life is good for our kind."

"And I would honor that choice, Winglord, or help you find an alternative to the humans if you wish, once you are healthy. I will assist you and yours however I am able. We must rebuild our people," Prime responded with a nod of respect toward his former enemy. "Now go and rejoin your trine. They have been separated from you for far too long. I look forward to hearing back from you regarding whatever you decide."

Starscream nodded and stepped forward to leave, only to feel Thundercracker cautiously nudge their trine bond.

~What?~ Starscream demanded, pausing as the unfamiliar act took most of his attention.

~Our aerie on Earth,~ he send the coordinates and access codes. ~Megatron won't learn you're free until we're ready.~

~Soundwave will detect me,~ he pointed out dryly.

~But won't report you,~ the blue Seeker assured with enough confidence that Starscream believed him, even without being entirely sure of why.

~Come soon,~ he insisted instead and shifted his focus to the outside world to spot Prime looking at him with a knowing smile. "What are you smiling about?" he grumbled.

Prime spoke quietly, "There was a time when part of my duties was to celebrate bonds and new life, Winglord. I may never truly be High Priest again, but I still feel every one of Primus's children in my spark, regardless of faction, and the new ones feel especially sweet."

Crimson optics cycled in surprised. "You ... you know what sparks still exist?"

Prime gave Starscream a look that was somehow unimaginably weary and hopeful at once. "Every one of them, Winglord. There are 448 of us left, including the new ones."

A slow nod greeted the statement. "More than enough. All of Seeker kind came from a single trine. If the old stories are true, for generations all others came from the first thirteen. It's going to be a massacre to end the war, you know. Most Cons won't accept surrender, not even from Megatron."

"I hope that the prospect of survival and a future will at least convince some," Prime admitted. "We are...not the same as we were when the first 13 could produce a whole civilization, nor even the first trine."

"Some yes," Starscream told him. "Most? I doubt it. Whether or not you manage, with what you've taught my trine, Seekers will. We'll remember."

Prime nodded his head in understanding and acceptance as his long-time enemy walked out into the hot Australian sun. "Clear skies and favorable winds to you and yours, Winglord."

"May Primus always shine through your spark, Lord Prime," Starscream gave him an almost smile before taking off, quickly transforming and heading northwest into a future more unknown than ever before.