Disclaimer : I don't own Transformers, or anything related to it, other than my own twisted plotlines. -.-'
Note : This idea was actually inspired by a car I spotted in town recently, and the first thing I thought of was 'Topkick'. XD Poor Ironhide.
Summary : Another Autobot Christmas one-shot. Was supposed to be one thing and mutated way out of shape and size... Hope you enjoy it! Annabelle/Ironhide friendship.
Annabelle smiled as she gazed out the front window. Her mind was full of countless seasonal topics as she gazed at the posters for a white Christmas, and watched as people set up decorations in their yards, as they passed.
"What are you smiling about, brat?"
The tone could have been condescending, but the affectionate note in it overrode all else, as Annabelle turned to face the rugged driver of the Topkick she currently rode in. "Right now? The world's only modern caveman." She giggled a little, pushing her long blonde hair out of her face, as the driver grumbled.
"Stop that." He refused to meet her eyes, as he continued to grumble. "It's not that bad."
"Your eyebrows are bushy enough to make the forests around Nevada look sparse." She shot back, raising an eyebrow. "And your moustache could hide every bit of wildlife in them." Rolling her eyes, she softened her words by reaching out to gently trace the scars that trailed down over the one side of his face. Then she giggled and reached out to pat his bald head. "And unfortunately, it looks like none of that luck made it up here." With a laugh, she shook her head and once again turned to the front.
He finally smiled, turning and pulling into a large building behind several larger and yellow school buses. "Hnn... We're here."
"Thanks, Ironhide." She smiled again, patting his cheek. For an eighteen-year-old, Annabelle had her moments of surprising maturity. Unlike most kids, she didn't really seem to be into rebelling, or doing crazy and dangerous things. She was a lot like her mother in that respect.
Will would argue it was Ironhide's influence.
Sarah would argue it was her upbringing of the girl.
Ironhide was just glad she wasn't a trouble maker. Or prone to attracting them, like he was.
Leaning over, Annabelle quickly gave Ironhide a platonic kiss on the cheek, before grabbing her backpack and hopping out of the truck. "See you later!" She called, trailing her fingers over the edge of the truck form familiarly, before running to the school.
She never stopped smiling once, and anyone who saw her might just think she was a happy child. Or that she was happy to participate in redecorating the school.
Too bad no one knew the real reason for her smiles today.
Annabelle wobbled out of the school, a large box of decorations in her small arms. Ironhide was parked in his usual place, keeping watch, when he spotted her. First thing he did was curse the uselessness of the students travelling around her, many of which were young, healthy, strong organic males who never once bothered to offer to help.
"Slaggin' useless!" He cussed, hopping out of the truck. It didn't escape his notice that he and his truck were the center of attention for the students. Most were impressed or intimidated by the truck alone, but as he strode through the throng of children, most of those afore mentioned 'young, healthy, strong organic males' squeaked like glitch mice and quickly moved out of his way. "Annabelle!"
He'd only meant to call out to her, but his voice startled her, and she yelped as she tripped over the edge of the curbe she hadn't seen. She flailed a little, before tilting dangerously, but Ironhide was there to catch and help stabilize her, before he took the box. "Oh wow, thanks 'Hide." She huffed a chunk of her hair out of her face, her cheeks red with the effort, before rubbing at her arms to ward off a chill.
"These kids got somethin' wrong with their arms, or somethin'?" He asked darkly, glaring at the kids who dared stop and stare at them. "'Cause if not, I can give them somethin'. They could'a at least offered to help."
"'Hide..." Annabelle groaned a little and nudged his arm, though her smile never faded.
"Slaggin' useless." He repeated in a growl, opening the door automatically, after making sure no one would notice, and slipping the box into his interior. "And why are you bringing this stuff back? I thought you needed it for your Earth holidays."
"We used what we needed." Rolling her eyes, she popped the back door open herself and slipped her backpack in, before closing it and hopping into the front. Turning, she leaned in between the seats and dug into the box, pulling out a kind of fluffy red ball of some sort of shiny leather, and two little leather brown things that didn't resemble anything to Ironhide's knowledge.
"What're those?" He eyed the objects suspiciously as he made a show of climbing in and closing the door, before going through the motions of starting the engine and pulling away.
"Just decorations." She giggled a little, an odd gleam he didn't like coming to her eyes.
With a winning smile his way, Annabelle raised an eyebrow. "When are you going to get those eyebrows plucked? I can do it, you know. My friend's studying for beauty school, and showed me how."
Ironhide quickly googled what she meant, and raised his own bushy eyebrow. "I'm fine." He answered gruffly, though he looked thoughtful for a while after, in the silence that followed.
Once again, Annabelle looked out the window, noting how many people had gotten their decorations up in time for Christmas. She sighed a little, though, knowing there was only one thing really missing.
"What's wrong?" The tone was both irritated and concerned.
"Hmm? Oh, nothing." She didn't even glance at him. "I was just thinking about how nice it'd be to have a real 'White Christmas', you know? With the snow and everything." She looked at a large tree in someone's yard, where they'd creatively stuck a reindeer and what looked like the remains of Santa's sleigh, with two human legs sticking out.
She caught the idea of a 'sleigh crash' and giggled hysterically at the image, her momentary longing for snow forgotten.
Ironhide watched her thoughtfully, once again lapsing into silence for the rest of their ride home.
(That Night, at the Base)
"Did you hear? Apparently Annabelle wants a 'White Christmas'." The Silver Corvette pulled up next to the yellow Ferrari, both vehicles sitting at the entrance to the main hangar and staring out at the sky.
"And what the slag is that?"
Sideswipe actually had to google it for several long moments, before sending several attachments to his twin. "Apparently when frozen water crystals, known as 'snow', fall from the sky, and cover the land in white. It's traditional in the north, I believe."
The Ferrari seemed to shiver. "Traditional? Try cold! You were there, Sides. You remember just how frigid our last mission was!" The whine was getting louder, and Sideswipe rolled forward to nudge his twin, to silence him. "Hey, watch the paint!"
"Would you be quiet!"
"Tch! Look, it was cold. It was wet. It was slagging miserable, and I don't care to repeat the experience, thank you."
Pretty much every bot had more or less adopted her like their own sparklings, and despite his earlier whining, Sunstreaker immediately quieted down. Both cars seemed to lull into a quiet state for a very long moment, before the yellow Ferrari vented heavily and sank down on his axels.
"What did you have in mind?"
"Jetfire's already fueled and standing by, with Permission from Prime, as long as we stick to our mission."
The Corvette slowly lead the way out of the hangar, the Ferrari sluggishly following behind it. "We give Annabelle a 'White Christmas'."
"You did what? Are you glitching? You let those two slaggers go off to Primus-knows-where, alone?" Ironhide's engine was growling so angrily, he failed to hear the slow, cautious approach of William Lennox, the soldier, family man, and father carrying his favorite pistol as he glanced around worriedly. "And if they decide to go off mission and get into trouble? No one's there to get them out of it!"
"A few nights in a human 'impound lot' can do them some good, I'm sure." Prime drawled calmly. "And anything more than that would have to deal with Decepticons, which we cannot blame them for."
Wanna bet? Ironhide growled, both over the internals, and externally. While he wasn't happy with their plan, he couldn't appreciate their wanting to give Annabelle something she really wants for her holiday season. "Wait, they actually want to do somethin' nice? Okay, what's the catch?"
Now Prime actually paused. "None, that I'm aware of. I will have Jetfire keeping an eye on them, I assure you."
That was a minor relief, at best. "Alright. If anyone can be tougher on those two trouble makers than me, it's him. Fine, but if they get into trouble, I'm blaming you."
There was a small chuckle. "Will do. Prime out."
I don't like this. Somethin's gonna go wrong. I just know it. Ironhide settled on his axels, venting sharply, and nearly had a spark attack when he sensed the armed human presence. Jumping a little, he growled to himself, before identifying it quickly. "Will. How many times do I have to tell you not to sneak around armed?"
"I wouldn't have to." Will peeked around the edge of the garage door, looking worried. "If you didn't sound like you were about to face down five rabid Decepticons. Mind telling me what all the growling was about? You were keeping us all awake, buddy." He raised an eyebrow, before waving back at the house and lowering his gun, before stepping into the garage.
"Those slaggin' twins are up to somethin'. Told Prime they wanted to give Annabelle a 'White Christmas'. How'd they even know about that? She only just mentioned it to me today, and I haven't said a thing to anyone!"
"I probably said something." Will looked like he was trying to remember. "I was mentioning it to Epps at the base, earlier. They probably overheard me."
"Aww frag! And now they're up to who-knows-what." Ironhide groaned and sank down on his axels, shaking his head. "I can only hope Primus sees fit to grant me a mercy, and does somethin' to keep those two out of my circuits."
"Oh, come on, now. They're only trying to do Anna a favor." Will held his gun at his side as he patted the hood of the truck.
Ironhide paused a moment, before giving Will a look masked because of his current form. "When have you ever known those two to do a favor without having some kind of catch to it?"
At that, the Major froze. His eyes widened, and he cursed, before letting his head hang limply. "Damn it! I hate it when you're right. So what do we do?"
"We wait, and we worry." Came the grim reply.
"Gee, thanks, Death." Giving him a look, the Major shook his head. "Alright, I'm going inside, and I might just lock my family down in the panic room for the night. Let me know if I need to worry, 'kay?"
That might have been an over-reaction, if the man was serious, but Ironhide knew him well enough by now... Giving a grunt of agreement, the Topkick settled in for the cool night, increasing his internal temperatures a little, before relaxing.
Will Lennox looked around and shook his head, before mumbling to himself and heading in. Ironhide could hear him telling his wife about the plan, and then dismissing his earlier growling for a rather unwanted update from the base to Annabelle. He listened as the family went around their business, before slowly falling into recharge, with the worry about what the twins were planning.
He fell so deeply into recharge, that he never once noticed the human presence sneaking out of the house, well after everyone had turned in for the night.
"Slaggit, this stuff is cold!"
"Did you expect it to be warm? Seriously, Sunny."
"Oh shut it, Sides. This was your plan after all! Let's just get the fragging 'snow' and go."
"What do you think we've been doing?"
"Exchanging wit while standing knee deep in frozen water?"
The twins exchanged a look, each holding huge piles of snow. They'd hastily created a large carrying container for it, as well as a small, primitive but effective machine to break it up into tiny 'flakes' before sending it out, and now they were just trying to fill the hold.
That is, until they got sidetracked by Sunstreaker's whining, and Sideswipe's overwhelming urge to throw a 'snowball' at his twin's head.
His optic ridge actually twitched as he stared at the back of his twin's head, watching as Sunstreaker stooped, picked up an arm load, and quickly dumped it in the C-17, before it could melt. His fingers twitched around the pile of lose snow he held, sending chunks of it to the ground, as he physically resisted the urge.
Time limit... We have a time limit...
Just one snowball... C'mon, you know you wanna...
Then he'll have to get me back, and I'll have to get him back... It'll start a snowball war... We don't have time for a snowball war...
Just one! He'll never have to know! You can blame it on the pile of snow hanging over his head!
Internal sensors would indicate all the problems with that lie in a second flat. Even glitches like Skids and Mudflap would notice it, let alone a twin of me, a genius.
"Sideswipe, stop staring at my perfect aft, and get to work!" A ball of snow flew by his head, missing him by millimetres, and that's all that was needed to snap Sides out of his trance.
Fingers clenched around the snow, and ice blue optics narrowed as the ball formed quickly.
We don't have time!
He started it!
And no one will slagging finish it, aft-ahead!
Reaching back, Sideswipe launched the snowball at the back of his twin's head, only to stare in shock as Sunstreaker turned at the last minute to grab another arm load, and caught the ball to his face. For a moment, neither bot made a sound, but then Sunstreaker snarled and Sideswipe cracked up in laughter.
"Think that's funny, do you?"
With another snarl, Sunstreaker launched himself at his twin, causing Sideswipe to yelp, and a large pile of snow off the overhang over them to suddenly give way. Twin yelps later caused even more to fall, burying the twins under it all.
There was silence a moment, as both bots just sat there, under the snow.
"Is this enough slagging snow for the femme?" Sunstreaker snarled quietly, already having figured out why more snow fell on them every time they made a sound. He quickly and quietly pulled himself from the mound, having to struggle when he realized it reached his waist now.
Sideswipe was quiet when he pulled himself free. "It should be, yeah."
"You gonna help this time?"
Now the silver twin grinned. "Yeah, I think I got the urge to throw snowballs out of my system."
"Are you two about through?" The third voice startled both mechs, who immediately turned to the black jet that hovered nearby. "Just a thought, but... WIth the C-17 full of snow, how were you planning to get back to the base?"
They'd recalibrated the sensors in the back of the C-17 to keep it's interior cold enough to keep the snow frozen, and even worked on a temporary forcefield that would keep it from seeping into the cockpit where the Captain was undoubtedly waiting impatiently.
At that moment, however, they exchanged looks and groaned in sync.
(Lennox House Hold)
The small figure snickered as they crouched in front of the truck. Gently touching it's front grill, they grinned broadly, before turning and laying flat on the ground, sliding under the truck with practiced ease. They mentally thanked all that was holy they paid attention in mechanics class, and smirked as they set to work, rewiring certain things.
It only took them a few minutes, before they slid out again, dusting their hands off quietly, before grabbing a small round object from the ground next to them. With a flash of white teeth, illuminated by the full moon, they set to work, securing it in the center of the grill. Then they moved fast, going to the side doors and carefully opening them.
They slipped the wire in between the doors, fitting it so opening and closing the doors wouldn't work, before securing a brown, stuffed object so it stood up and curled over the top edge of the Topkick roof. Then they repeated the process on the other side.
Giggling to themselves, they stood back and admired their work, before laying flat on the ground, sliding under the truck, and quickly undoing all their work. Then, with a final glance at what they'd done, they snuck back into the house.
Ironhide recharged on, never aware of what had happened.
(The Next Day)
"Annabelle! Get up! Fast!"
The urgent tone had her eyes shooting open. Most teens would groan and roll over, mumbling something semi-coherent, before going back to sleep, but not her. Not Annabelle Lennox. She'd learned at an early age that an urgent tone and early wake up usually meant one thing.
Move fast, or risk dying.
She was up and out of her bed in a blink, dressed in baggy sweat pants and a sweater, with her hair a mess, lying in a chaos over her shoulders. Without thinking about appearance, she ran to the door, eyes wide and heart pounding. "Mom? Dad!" She swung the door open.
Instead of the panic she expected to see... Instead of her dad weilding a gun, looking frantic and determined... Instead of her mom looking terrified and weilding a gun of her own, she was met with twin smiles and excited glances.
"Uhhh..." She blinked. Then yawned. Blushing, she rubbed at the sleep in her eyes. "What's going on? I thought there was an attack!" Risking a quick glance to her click, she frowned, noting it was barely an hour before dawn. "Why are you waking me up so early?"
In truth, her parents looked as tired as she felt, but they didn't seem to mind it. Will smiled, holding Sarah close, and pointed behind Annabelle. "Look out your window, sweety." He laughed slightly, shaking his head. "Looks like a Christmas miracle to me."
Walking across her room, Annabelle did as he told her and gasped. Her eyes widened, and her hand covered her mouth in shock.
Tiny white flakes were falling from the sky. The ground was already blanketed in white. Just a thin layer, but a layer nonetheless, and it clung to the early morning dew in the trees in their yard. "It's..." She stared at the snow, falling more and more heavily, until it was hard to see outside.
"We'll meet you downstairs, but you'd better hurry."
Annabelle barely heard the door shutting behind her as she stared in amazement, but as soon as her mind registered the fact it was closed, she began frantically running around her room. She pulled on warm clothing, brushed out her hair, grabbed some boots from the back of her closet, and even dashed into the bathroom to brush her teeth, choosing to forego her breakfast.
In what felt like no time, she was standing outside, laughing and spinning in the snow, feeling the cool white flakes as they brushed against her skin.
"This is amazing!" Sarah laughed behind her, hugging Will tightly.
"Yeah, tell me about it." Will's smile was glued to his face as he looked around, before sighing. "I kinda wish I didn't have to go into work."
"You're not going out in this?" Sarah's smile faded, before she found herself laughing at the irony of what she was saying.
"Work's work, love." He kissed her lightly. "Besides, if this is all part of the twins' plan, it won't last long."
"What's all the racket?" A groggy voice came from the garage, and Annabelle squeaked a little as the Topkick pulled out slowly.
She'd all but forgotten that, but as Ironhide slowly seemed to wake up, the snow clinging immediately to his cooler frame, she burst into the widest smile she felt was humanly possible. "Ironhide!" She laughed, spinning again. "Isn't this amazing?" She continued to laugh, both from the look of Ironhide and from the snow swirling around her, clinging to her hair and face.
Will choked behind her, and Sarah muffled a laugh, both having seen Ironhide.
The Topkick was quiet a long moment, before a small snort of amusement worked it's way out of him. "I see you seem incredibly happy with the snow." There was a begrudging tone about his voice.
"Hey, Ironhide, um..." Will snorted a little. "Can you do me a huge favor?"
"Depends." That was his typical response, and Will rolled his eyes.
"Well, I'm not gonna be able to see too well to drive through this, so I was wondering... Ironhide, with your nose so bright, won't you guide my way tonight?"
Sarah and Annabelle laughed hysterically, setting Will off, and Ironhide just sat there, confused. His lack of response made them laugh even harder, until Annabelle landed on her butt in the snow, yelping about it's cold, before jumping to her feet again, and Sarah had to lean heavily on Will just to keep from repeating her daughter's performance.
"What the slag's gotten into you?"
"Language!" Sarah scolded Ironhide, but her laughter just wouldn't stop. "I don't want you to be a bad influence on the other reindeer-I mean, children!" Her eyes glitter as she choked up laughing again.
"Yeah, they might not let poor Ironhide play in any reindeer games." Her husband chipped in.
"...Do...I want to know...?" Ironhide rolled away a little from the cackling family.
Annabelle finally shook her head. "Scan yourself, silly!" She giggled at the big, stuffed red 'nose' on his grill, and the equally as stuffed 'antlers' sticking up between his doors.
Doing so, Ironhide growled. Then, recognizing the items, the growl choked off into a heavy groan. "Annabelle..."
"Hey, at least I let up about your bushy eyebrows!" She chirped, causing Sarah to snort, and Will to hiccup behind her. "Come on! Be a happy rein-Topkick." She giggled and ran over to him, hugging him. "You look cute."
"I'm a fully grown mech, Annabelle. A fighter, and a soldier. The last thing I want to look is 'cute'." He grumbled, causing Will to fall over laughing.
"I bet!" The Major chirped in. "On the upside, at least you'd one-up the Decepticons! While they're staring in confusion, you can blast them all back to the pit!" He called, before laughing again.
"Language!" Sarah scolded, slapping at her husbands arm with a giggle.
The entire Lennox house hold broke out into fresh laughter as the snow finally began to let up, and Ironhide growled darkly at the thought of being seen by Decepticons like this.
The silver Corvette shivered as it hit another street, coming up on the border crossing. "Slag! I think I've got snow where the sun doesn't shine!"
"I've got snow where the sun does and doesn't shine!" The Ferrary next to it shivered as well. "How the frag do the humans deal with this cold?"
"Apparently they move to tropical places or 'bundle up'."
"Well I'm not sure how we're going to 'bundle up', but moving some place tropical sounds good to me."
"Except for the mud. The monkeys that fling feces. The insects. The monsoons. The animals that like to 'mark their territory'." Sideswipe rambled on and on to himself.
Sunstreaker growled, before falling silent and using his holographic form to hand in his paperwork. "Okay, ha ha. I get it. Why, again, did we agree to this?"
"Because we wanted to surprise Annabelle for Christmas. Besides, we went through all that work, we might as well get something from it, right?"
"Like a long, cold drive back?"
"Like knowing we did good."
"...I want a thorough, hot, wash and wax when we get back. And I mean thorough! Then I'm going to repaint myself, and see about being enlisted some place tropical and warm for the next Earth 'year.'"
Written : Dec 20, 2010
Hope you like it.