Also, any mistakes are because I quite literally cried through the whole chapter.
One hundred and two chapters, one hundred and three if you count the special Halloween interlude, and this is how far we have come. It's the end of the road, folks. I'm sorry to say that, but Nightstrider's journey has come to an end. I suppose after a couple of weeks of planning, I'll start up another story. This one, though, will mean a lot too me. This story, I kid you not, just started out as some random muse. I figured I'd lose interest fast, by like, chapter five, but no. I've started a new trend, have inspired a few new stories, and managed to delve myself so deep into my love of Transformers that I cannot seem to claw back out. It still boggles my mind, when I imagine how close we are to having come to the one-year anniversary of this fiction. Well, enjoy I guess. I'll see you all whenever I make another fiction, hopefully something that no one else has done as well.I'd love to see some fan art of the ending of this chapter though, before the dotted line end. The cuddly bit, if anyone can do it. I can't draw, or I would. This is something I would love to see drawn.)
Primus did in fact tell them the whole story of my life, human and otherwise. It arose no problems, and everyone seemed generally ether awed, or not at all surprised. The not at all surprised one had been Ironhide. They even got to see my whole life on tape, via the nice pool that Primus gathered with a magical mumbo jumbo poof of dramatic smoke for everyone to gaze into.
My eyesight was returned to me through the replacement of my optics, and I was given the chance to gaze upon my sparklings for myself. They were even more beautiful with my own eyes the through the eyes of my mates and family. The way my daughters would look up and smile at me and giggle and coo when I did something silly, or give me disgruntled looks when I did something less then desirable would always be burned into my memories. They brought such joy to my life, and I was with a full family for the first time. I had my children, my husbands, adopted parents who loved me, and brothers who loved me just as much. I was happy, and nay a tear was shed for many a year.
Nightlife grew to be a lot more like me then I thought, slightly in attitude, though that was mostly Sideswipes attitude. She took my alt mode, and showed a love for the outdoors that rivaled Hounds and mine. While I was black with multi hued flames, she chose the same sunshine yellow for her flames as the color Sunstreaker did for his whole body. She inherited Sunstreaker's looks. Rouge was different. She took after Sideswipe in looks, though both girls got my door wings, and had the attitude of her Sunflower Father before he got himself bonded. They grew to be as tall at their fathers, got my claws, and got their swords. Life was good. All of us were happy.
But that was long ago, much to long ago for most memories to keep track of. Mine did, though. It always did…
Tonight, though, I want to cry. I don't really know why. After so many years and so many friends lost and remaining only as memories, you would think I had cried out all of my tears. But no; I still have some energon tears left in my crusted old face. Hm… Perhaps crusted is not the correct term. I don't look as if I've aged at all on the outside, my armor still strong and thick as ever, the dull black paint and faded flames the only sign of my age. I never got myself a Cybertronian alternate mode. My form was one of the final reminders of my human life, besides my memories. My joints are as healthy as the day that my body stopped itself from aging, the day that the best medic in the whole race of Cybertronians passed into the matrix, following his long lost mate. Cybertronian paint lasts a long time, longer then most of us are ever expected to live. Long past the end of earth, the fall, and rebirth of a race. Too bad that it only lasts for so long, like life is supposed to.
In 2056, William Lennox passed with Sarah Lennox quietly in his sleep, and following his death was Epps, and many more. Eventually, all we were left with was their descendants. Annabelle had six beautiful boys, and Samuel got married to Carly. Much to Bumblebee's devastation, he was killed in a car accident with Carly and left an orphaned six year old daughter named Nicole in the custody of his guardian. After that long, we were fully recognized as planetary citizens, and had been since not long after the defeat of Unicron and saving of the planet once more. Mikaela never got married; She adopted a young girl and a boy, raised them both, and then passed away in her sleep at the age of 89 with one of her children staying with her in case. Simmons got together with Charlotte Mearing, but both died after five years of marriage. One from cancer, the other of heartbreak.
Planet Earth lasted longer then I figured it would. But, ultimately, long after we had managed to establish and start building our own planet much like Cybertron, Earth began to crumble. It was in the year 9872AD, which the first fissure of the planets eminent eruption started to form. We Cybertronians took the people selected for us to save, some six hundred thousand families from every country, nation, and place in the world, and many pairs of whatever animals had not gone extinct, along with supplies and various plant species, and put them in a habitat that I had the pleasure of helping build. It was a fake earth, on our very own planet, and had every habitat available. There was a fake sun, designed by Wheeljack and me. I remember fondly when we first finished it. Such joy there had been. I digress, it seems. All those supposedly hidden super volcanoes scattered through out the earths crust erupted all at once. We watched helplessly from afar as the whole planet self destructed and then collapsed in on itself, helpless against its own gravity.
From there, our Planet continued to grow. As it turned out, there were far more Cybertronians then we first thought. With the peace and reunion between the factions, the work was shared, and we built Autocon-Prime, built in the between area of the space between earth and Cybertron. We had our own sun and moon, and due to some generators and plants, our own oxygen too. Now, to say that peace was fully assured would be a lie. There were few Decepticons who still supported the ways of Megatron, and had gone on with their ways. But, we, the peaceful Autobots as everyone, ex-cons too, had come to keep calling ourselves, vastly out numbered them, one to a hundred easily. But, with the rebellions, it always brings prices. Almost everyone is gone. The first to perish had been Mudflap and Skids, who were recognized as heroes for selflessly giving their lives for a tiny red-eyed sparkling who had been in the way of an incoming missile. The next to follow had been my own mother.
Elita had died the way she had lived, a warrior and a mother. She had been shot down while trying to help one of her grandchildren, a seeker as they had a daughter who mated with Starwhip, the first and only child of Whiplash and Starscream, get their wing unstuck from under a pile of rubble. Mom died without regrets. Papa mourned her, so did I and everyone who knew her for who she was, and clung to his remaining family all that much harder. Leo went on to become the next Prime, and Papa came to live in the same block as us. Leo ended up mating to Velocity, and had a whole slew of children.
My own twins, they hitched up with Alpha and Beta. It had been many years since my last sparkling, my fifty-eighth, had passed into the matrix. Ironhide passed on not long after Chromia had her last sparkling, having died to keep a rebel Decepticon bomb from taking out half of Primeceon, the main city in which we most lived in. My family were not amongst the living there; we live in a town that I helped make; Oremus. Named after my home state, and after the bot that brought me back to it after I died the first time. Chromia died after her last sparkling got her mate, the very night after in fact.
My father had died not quite just yet a million years ago, and the wound was still raw. He had died with me on the couch, holding my hand as I leaned on his shoulder and we watched some old earth movies. He had talked to me like he was going to be all right, had told me that he loved me and looked forwards to doing a movie night again, maybe having the Twins there this time too. Papa had said that it always brightened his day and made his life a little more worth it. I told him I loved him lots, and then he had been gone. Just like that. No warning, no nothing. Just gone. I had been weeping like sparkling when I carried his body down to the med bay for Ratchet to examine. It had been the longest walk of my life, right up there to having to carry one of my sparklings to Ratchet because some 'Con rebel had put a plasma blast through my little StreamDancer's chassis. She too, died in my arms.
Leo and Velocity passed on peacefully, passing on Leo's prime genes to his youngest daughter, Turbulence. Turbulence passed hers on to another daughter, and that daughter to another son who took the name Orion Pax, after the great Optimus Prime, who never got to meet me. Slowly, I began to fade from the generations' memories. The only thing that they remembered was that it was a femme who was supposed to grow to be the oldest alive, and then die once she was forgotten. But, I wont ever truly be forgotten. Something nice and tidy left in the back of one of my cubbies, designated somewhere in my will to go to my descendant Orion Pax, who was related by my father side, though we weren't blood.
Wheeljack met his end in a laboratory explosion, having had been trying to make a special crib for one of his many great grandchildren. Not many mourned him, but I did. I always do.
The last to die, not including my mates and after all of the bots I grew to love and know had long passed, had been Ratchet. Far back on earth, just before the end of it, Ratchet gave me all of his medical knowledge, which I downloaded onto a data pad so I had it for others to read as well as in my memories. Ratchet had hung on, long passed the death of Moonracer, saying he needed to teach the new generations how to be medics. He did, in fact. He put out six thousand bots with almost all of his skill, but they lacked the sheer talent that had made him the best medic I had ever known. The old bastard though, you know what he did the day before he seemed to know he was going to die? He came up to me, and handed me the beat up and dirty Naruto plushy that my human friends and I had made for him so long ago. He told me that I better take care of the doll for him. He wouldn't need him later. That had been the last time I had ever talked to him.
Naruto sat on the shelf next to my storage dresser, where I would see him every day as I went to get data pads.
Sideswipe died too. He and Sunstreaker were having trouble keeping up with me now that the twins' one and only medic had been gone. Sideswipe had been going down hill faster then his brother, and was down to having to lean on us whenever we went out. He never lost his smile or that mischievous glint in his optics, like he knew something that we never would, even up until the day he could no longer move. He had said, as we lay there on our bed cuddling, that this was his last day. That had been three hundred thousand years ago. That is a long time. But he never truly left us, you see; His chest opened up just as his optics died out, and half of his spark left to merge with his brothers with the other half left to join the matrix with our children. Sideswipes' last gift to us was so that I wouldn't be alone for forever. After all, our vows from earth had said that whomever was left behind would always stay with the other. Sunstreaker has been with me since Sideswipes death. He's always in our memories and tucked into the forefronts of our minds. I still cry about him, even though he told me not to weep for my memories.
Lately, Sunstreaker hadn't been doing well. His joints were giving him much more trouble then normal, and no amount of medical work I did seemed to ease any of the pain. He hadn't been able to race in so many millennia, that his wheels had gone soft and flat. Sunstreaker can't change into his alternate mode any more ether. He hasn't been able to do that for ten years. He's suffering now, and I can't do anything about it. No amount of work can save him, now that he's been sleeping longer. It's only a matter of time. A fractured spark, even living on love, can only stay lit for so long. He is the last to truly know me well.
My tears slipped down my cheeks as I stood out on the balcony. It's late at night here, and I was watching the stars pass overhead slowly as the planet shifted and rotated. There was the creak of tired and worn joints, and I turned to catch Sunstreaker standing outside at the doors, leaning heavily on the double doorframe. His armor no longer shines with that same sunshine yellow luster; it hasn't the past few days. His optics are still bright, but I see him gazing off as if at nothing sometimes. He cast me a tired smile and crooked a tired finger at me, shuffling forwards with a limp. "Come here, Nightstrider."
I gave him a soft smile and moved to meet him, wrapping my arms gently around my love's waist. "Sorry, Sunstreaker. Did I wake you? I didn't mean too."
He gently reached up a hand to run his fingers over my antenna's, which wiggled at his touch. Then he stroked my audio horns. "No such thing, love." His legs creaked, and I supported a little bit more of his weight. "I was going to wake up anyways."
I chuckled softly and tiredly to him, the exhaustion in my voice not a physical one, but more a spiritual. I am old, and he is older still. "Come on, old man. You and me both know I woke you up when I got up."
"Old man my nice aft." Sunstreaker snorted softly but deeply into my ear. I rested my helm on his chassis after giving him a soft kiss, listening to his engine hum slowly, the gears turning ever slower with age. "Care to tell me why you are crying?" He gently tilted my helm so that he could wipe away a tear. "Can I make it go away?"
"No." more tears fell of their own accord. "Not this time. Memories can't fade with time, love. Not mine. You cant hide from them ether… I can't help weeping for my memories. It's so hard to remember them, it hurts so bad."
"Now, now, I know it hurts." He spoke softly to me and began to sway his body in a slow dance, a habit he and Sideswipe had taken up when our friends started dieing. When I would cry, they would dance with me, like my father had done at my wedding. I heard his joins creaking more, and started to try and wiggle away, to spare him the pain. He pulled me tight, the strength he rarely had the energy to show anymore shining through his frame. "Stop now, don't pull away." In a circle we turned slowly, orbiting like the planet.
"But this is hurting you, Sunstreaker. Stop, I'll be okay." I protested.
He tugged me gently over the bond, and then rumbled quietly in my ear. "Give me this one last dance. Please. Grace me with this one last gift besides the love that you hold in your spark for a crusty old gladiator like me." I started to cry again, the tears flowing harder. "Please don't cry. Don't cry for me."
"I love you too much not too." I sobbed silently. He simply held me until I had no more tears to cry, no more sobs to let out. Sunstreaker stood as my silent oak, once a part of my hammock hanging two; the only one left, and let me cry. He mopped away my tears with soft pained hugs, gentle and sweet kissed, and the soft continuous circle we kept swaying around in. The energon left tear tracks down my face, staining the metal. When there were no more tears to dry, the last saved for an event I knew to be in the fast coming, he kept twirling me around, swaying softly in the low moon lit light. When his legs creaked again, I stopped him and looked up at him. His optics looked so tired, worn down, and ready to just give up. But beyond that was the undying love that held us bound together, that kept his body chugging along at a snails pace to keep me from being left alone. "Lets go inside. I'm getting tired now."
He smiled at me and half way released me, gently keeping an arm over my shoulders. Sunstreaker gave me a wink, and a little flap of his audio fins. "No your not. But I thank you. As much as I enjoy dancing with you, it'll have to wait until morning comes. Then, I can get a better view of your lovely frame in the light."
"You old flirt." I said softly as we walked inside slowly. "My paint is faded, and you know it."
As we got to the bed, Sunstreaker flashed me one of his sexy grins that never failed to warm my spark. "I know. But I like it anyway. I love whatever you look like."
"You always say that."
"That's because it's always true."
"So you say, Sunstreaker." Gently, I helped him settle back into laying position before going around the other side of the bed and crawling in with him. I snuggled close, but not close enough that I couldn't angle my head up to look into his face, as he laid on his side and looped an arm over my waist. We laid there, on our sides, facing each other, just basking in each other's presence. He leaned his helm forwards and rested it on mine, and we settled down like that, just staring into each other's optics. "I love you, Sunstreaker. Primus, I love you so much."
He brought his arm up, his shoulder groaning, and stroked my cheek softly. "And I love you, Babe." His optics shuttered briefly and his body relaxed further. "I'm so tired, love…" He said softly, his deep blue optics opening to look at mine.
I reached a hand up to stroke his cheek. He tilted his helm into my palm and sighed softly, his optics fuzzing out a bit. "I am too…" I felt my optics water again, and bade them to stop before over flowing. "I know… Rest then, Sunstreaker. Rest, and get some sleep."
He cast hazy optics back to me. "I'll rest, but you have to rest too." He pulled me close, wrapping his arms around my back fully. He drew slow circles on the faded panels of my door wings, the rate of his movement slowing ever faster. "I love you, Nightstrider. You made my life worth living."
I couldn't help it. I started to cry again, though silently. "And you made mine worth living too. You and Sideswipe. Everyone did."
He let out an airy sigh. "We'll see them eventually." When his optics seemed to clear, he frowned at me. "I thought I asked you not to cry?"
I gave a small hiccupping dry laugh. "I can't help it. These are the last of my tears I have to weep with."
He sighed, and gave me a soft kiss. "I don't want to see you cry…"
"I'm sorry." I said softly. "I can't stop."
"Its alright. When I see you again, I expect not to see tears, you hear me?" he closed his optics, the glow of them shining out from under his metal lids. Sunstreaker sighed. "I'm going to go to sleep now, alright? No tears in the morning?"
"Good night, love." I said softly. "No more tears."
He sighed again, and I heard him click into sleep with a soft "Good." I watched him for a while, listening to his engine sputtering in his chest. My tears flowed even more, and then the engine started to slow, sputtering slowly to a stop. His optics started to fade to black, and I cried all the harder. Pressing my helm under his chin, I felt him tighten his arms around me. "Love you." Came over the bond, just before it disappeared.
My spark shattered, broken like a glass vase lost in a tornado of emotion. I sobbed these big body shaking sobs, my tears stopping soon after because I had no more to cry with. My sobs were dry as I cried on my mate. As his body started to cool, I whimpered and held him tighter, willing him to come back, to not leave me. The bond missing curdled and grew, paining my spark as it beat within my chest plates. I have no one anymore. No Papa, no Mama, no Leo, no Bo, no Sideswipe, and now no Sunstreaker. I'm all alone, left unwillingly here to rot in my despair.
"It's time to come home, Nightstrider." A deep rumbling voice spoke in-between my sobs. "You've suffered enough. You have a couple of someone's here waiting for you."
"He's gone!" I wailed. "They're both gone!"
"No they're not." The voice soothed. "They're standing right here with me, waiting on you to join them now. Come, my child. It's time to come home, where you belong. Just close your eyes, and go to sleep. It'll all be all right. I promise."
I dry sobbed again. Curling further closer to my mate, I settled my mouth on his for one last kiss. Then I tucked my helm under his again, and let myself lay with him, feeling his body heat leaving, and my own draining out with it as well. The misery faded slowly, leaving behind an exhausting numbness. I closed my optics, and, as the last tear I didn't know I had fell, I fell asleep.
I awoke lying in someone's arms. There was a bright yellow arm in my face, and another cherry skin red one next to my other side of my face. I blinked into awareness, and I was drawn up slowly. I realized I didn't feel heavy with age now, and there was no creaking from the bright yellow body on my right, or from the red on my left. I turned my head left, and found myself in awe at the beauty of the shit eating sexy grin on the mechs face.
"Welcome home, Princess. I've missed you a lot." Sideswipe said. He was ready when I lunged from Sunstreaker's arms and wrapped my own around him. He swung me around, and them met my mouth in a fevered kiss. His body was as strong and as youthful as it had been in his Prime. There were no creaking joints, no legs shaking with weakness. Just love and strength in the bond that was flowing back from all sides. Everyone I knew was in my spark, filling me with love. I could help it. A tear slid free. "No tears, no tears. You shed enough of them while alive." He wiped it free. "I've waited thousands of years, I don't want our first meeting to have tears."
"I told you no tears," Sunstreaker thrummed behind me. He stole me away from his brother and pressed a kiss to my lips. "Now, since we're the last three who haven't crossed over, why don't we go?"
I just realized we were in the realm where I ended up after Egypt. Limbo, as I had come to call it. I looked at Sideswipe. "You waited? All this time for us?"
Sideswipe smiled and hugged me, squishing me between the two brothers. "I would wait for you always, Princess." He stole me back from Sunstreaker. "She's mine for now. You've had her all to yourself for three hundred thousand years. You can have her later."
I smiled softly as they started walking me towards a bright light next to the pool where I had watched the living. I paused slightly, and they turned back to look when their hands were met with resistance to their gentle tugging. "What is it?" Sunstreaker asked.
I looked at the pool. "I need to check something really fast. Then we can go." I strode towards the pool, enjoying my rejuvenated body. When I got there, the twins trailing behind closely, I leaned over it and braced my hands on the rim. "Show me Orion Pax." I said.
The mirror rippled, and it showed the image of Orion pax, sitting in the seat his ancestor had once sat. He was the spitting image of Papa, strangely even with the diluted energon line. I knew, though, that he didn't have the soul of Papa reborn. I felt Papa here. Orion, down in the pool, was opening up the data pad that I had left to him. I guess they had found our bodies. Briefly, the pool sensed my wonderings and flicked over to look at our bodies. We were laid out in a special room; my body at Papa's feet with Sunstreaker's on my left and Sideswipe on my right. Elita was next to Papa, her hand clasped with his even in their dead state. Near the bottom of my feet was a plate that stretched from Sideswipes to Sunstreaker's feet, leaving me in the middle. Engraved on it, was "Last of the Legends of Old. Elders Sideswipe, Nightstrider, and Sunstreaker. May they be honored in death, as they were not rightfully done so in life." The pool flicked back to Orion, who was aptly reading the data pad I had sent for him to have.
I gave a small winning grin and left the pool, the twins following behind curiously. "What was that about?" Sideswipe asked. "Looking at Orion, that is."
I smiled. "I won."
Sunstreaker blinked. "Won? What exactly did you win?"
I smiled slyly as we stepped up to the light portal like thing. I grasp their hands in mine, tightly holding them. Further down, I could see my Papa waving at me to come join them. At his foot was my human mother, waving happily with my sparkling that had died as a sparkling propped up on her hip. Little Shadewind, the sweet femme who had been trampled in an ambush from Decepticons, waved happily at me. Next to my father was Elita. My adopted mother smiled and beckoned me forwards silently. Beyond them I could see everyone, human and otherwise that had earned their right to stay in the matrix.
Shifting, I gave each of them a loving smile; glad I was with them again, and for all eternity. "That nifty little data pad had the whole record of my life story written on it. I called it Grab It By The Horns. I was supposed to die after ever one who knew me had passed on. As soon as you died, I could pass on as well, because no one besides me knew about the book." As we stepped forwards into the light to begin crossing over, I tilted my head back and arched my door wings and antenna. "Did you hear that you old codger? I win! I did what you forbade me about!" I didn't hear a reply as I walked down the tunnel with Sunstreaker and Sideswipe bouncing giddily at my side. As we started to step through the seeming bubble that was in place keeping the world of the matrix from spilling into the limbo area, I heard a deep chuckle.
My hand slipped from Sunstreakers, I reached out to grab my Fathers outstretched hand. He guided us through, and then everything faded white.
"I always knew you would, Nightstrider. You made your Grandpa very, very proud."