New chap, probbly the only one there'll be for a while as I'm struggling on what I'm doing for the next chapter also I'm gonna try to focus on finishing my book so I'll be kinda distracted from this.

Disclaimer: Blah blah blah Transformers no owny- except Skyburst and Cloudquake

Enjoy!


The orange expanse stretched out as far as the eye could see, always speeding away beneath him, always just ahead, pressing up against the true blue sky like none he'd ever seen. Monstrous red rocks burst up into the sky from the ground, like huge stone sentinels. He wondered idly that if he stood there as long as they had would he become one of them, cold, unthinking, undaunted, free? The perfect life. He careened down through them, tempered freedom, held down by the anchor around his neck. He should just cut it away like a ball and chain but he had his duty to fulfil. Suddenly the promised land seemed very far away. He continued on until dark had fallen, taking the longest root, it was the safest, not that they knew where he was going. There it was the largest of the sentinels, a colossal turret that blocked out the sun and held the world around it in awe; beneath it, nestled in its depths heated by its volcanic blood, was his destination. He could see them scurrying out to meet him and he swooped down to greet them, keeping far enough away so as to not intimidate them or to allow his precious cargo to get hurt. He placed it down on the ground and the clasped unlatched, he transformed and landed heavily on his feet. He was tired but right now he couldn't afford to be, not if he wanted to live, he had to have his wits about him. He stepped forward in front of his cargo and squared himself. The largest of them stepped forward

"Greeting's Decepticon." He rumbled "You appear to have travelled far." Cloudquake stepped forward

"I have. I need to speak with you Prime." He paused poignantly "Privately." Prime considered this a moment

"Of all of the Seeker's I have known Cloudquake you speak the most sense." Cloudquake couldn't help but feel surprised that Prime knew his name; Megatron didn't know half the names of the Autobot's "I will be happy to hear you out." Then he turned away only to pause and turn back "Bring Megatron into the Med-bay with you, I feel he will be necessary for you to explain to me what I expect to be a very interesting story." Then he turned and paced back to his base. The Autobot's parted for him without a word against his decision. Cloudquake stood alone stunned. A white Autobot, a medic hurried out and over to him walking round the opposite side of Megatron's med-berth and seized it

"Well are you going to help me bring this in?" he groused and Cloudquake snapped back to reality hurrying over and grabbing his side firmly, the Medibot counted to three and they lifted together.

The medic had hooked Lord Megatron up to a life support that beeped comfortingly against the background hum of life. Cloudquake felt like he should feel in danger here- and he ,did he told himself so, yet in the presence of the prodigious Prime he felt oddly safe. Optimus towered over him, silent now, mulling over his tale, a red goliath not so easily struck down as Achilles but just as strong and mighty a warrior.

"I see." Said Prime at length and then he went silent again, optics dark and thoughtful. Cloudquake waited apprehensively for something more; somewhere behind him prowled, one of the Praxxian's that had plagued him in many a previous battle, the white and black one "You wish for me to allow Megatron access to our medical resources and doctors to heal him?" Cloudquake could sense he was losing him

"With Starscream in charge the Decepticon army becomes more dangerous than ever," Optimus raised one brow disbelievingly but Cloudquake pressed on "They will not follow his command striking off on their own unpredictably, you will never be able to know when and where and why they will attack. Not just for Energon," he pressed meaningfully "But even killing simply for fun." Prime looked thoughtful at this and his brows pulled down and together "Megatron brought ordered predictability to that chaos, what you need to decide is whether you're better with the devil you know." He let himself stop there. Prime stared down at him, through him, optics so deep a blue they were almost black, face flat and hidden behind his mask, unreadable. Cloudquake felt himself tense with fear. "And how," began Prime "Do you to expect me to trust that this is not a deception?" he said gravely Cloudquake's world froze, this was it

"Because I'm willing to give you something to prove it's not." Prime's optics narrowed suspiciously

"And this is?" He said, Cloudquake cycled air heavily

"Me. My allegiance." He said, face flat and serious, Prime's brow raised up under his helmet and his optics widened with surprise before he took brisk control of himself once more

"I am afraid," he said gravely "That I cannot accept your swear of allegiance if it is not what you truly desire but what you are pressured into doing against your will."

"-No!" cut in the grey Seeker quickly "It is what I want, I've known that for a long time, but if I do this, join the Autobot's, I need your assurance that you will help Lord Megatron. It's all I ask." Prime mulled over this for a long time, Prowl cut in and led him to one side where they talked quietly for a few moments; it was a brief and tense talk ending with Prowl looking displeased and Prime assured (In Cloudquake's optics) as the dominant figure. Optimus rolled back over to the grey Seeker standing over him

"I accept your vow of allegiance, I will however give you three days to rethink your decision before the ceremony takes place and you are officially sworn in amongst our ranks, of course even after this you are able to change your mind. We will not trap you against your will; that is not the Autobot way. I also agree with your argument in reference to Starscream and the danger his leadership poses us and I agree to allow Megatron to be treated here for his wounds," From behind him Ratchet cried out in protest. Optimus raised a silencing hand and the medic fell still and fumed. "Though once we believe he is strong enough to face Starscream himself he will be removed from our base." Cloudquake nodded resolutely, Prime returned the gesture

"Prowl will direct you around the base, I feel it is for the best that you stay in the Brig for your first night here, allow the others to get used to your being here and on the same side." Cloudquake nodded once more and Prime departed leaving the Seeker alone amongst enemies. He froze he could feel the Praxxian's optics on his back, the medic was trying to ignore him, back to him and grumbling under his breath as he attached various wires and measuring equipment sot the unconscious Decepticon Lord. Prowl coughed curtly behind him into a balled hand and Cloudquake turned to acknowledge him

"If you'd like to follow me I'll take you around the lesser packed areas of the Ark. And then to the brig." And Cloudquake could almost hear the silent 'where you belong.' That trailed at the end of that sentence. He nodded silently and Prowl turned away from him making sure he followed him out of the med-bay into the base.

The Ark was nice, spacious for a ground walker's base, with more circular halls than the Nemesis and easy access to the outside world and more importantly the sky, it was warm and their Energon supplies more regularly and easily stocked, the only fault? It was so orange. So orange. Unnecessarily orange, frighteningly orange. That wasn't too much a problem; any good Decepticon could admit that the mech who had designed his base had suffered from a purple fetish the likes of which had never been seen, however orange was a completely different thing. Orange was happy, and blindingly so. Cloudquake grimaced against the bright colour, having lived deep underwater in such a dim and dingy place for so long such cheery colours and light within a living space was... painful. Prowl frowned misinterpreting his expression

"I take it our facilities do not compare to the grandeur of your previous home?" He snapped and Cloudquake bristled nervously

"Now now Prowlie, don't go so hard on the boy." Crooned a smooth voice and Cloudquake turned at his waist to watch another black and white mech stroll around him and over to the Security chief, the new mech slapped a hand amiably on Prowl's shoulder and smiled at him, Prowl bridled though not aggressively "If newbie here gives us any trouble we'll take care of him," there was a smile on his face and his visor was bright and blue though no matter how amicably he said it Cloudquake still tensed at the threat "Don't'chu worry about that." He grinned at Cloudquake and nodded to him in greeting "Don't let ole Prowlie here scare yah, he's a pussy cat really you just gotta know how to get on his good side." And his visor flashed humorously as Prowl shot imaginary lightning bolts out of his optics at him and imagined him sizzling into a little pile of burnt black ash (before sweeping him up and depositing him into a designated waste disposal unit as there is no littering inside of the base). Jazz slapped Prowl's shoulder one more time and Cloudquake was sure he winked at him "Bring him round to see us in the Rec-room some time, I'll introduce him to the boys, I think it'll go down more smoothly that way."

"Are you suggesting I'm not good with people Jazz?" accused the black and white security guard, Jazz grinned impishly

"Course not darlin'." And he winked roguishly before sauntering off down the corridor on his way with a wave of one hand and whistling of a tune, Prowl huffed disapprovingly and turned his back to the grey Seeker

"Come along, we haven't got all day."

Cloudquake was shown around all of the open to the public/safe sectors of the base, Prowl glossed over all of the security risk places and by the time they had done it was getting late in the day and they locked him up in the Brig. He stared listlessly up at the grey metal sky, wrists held by heavy handcuffs and thought about home, and thought about Starscream, and thought about Megatron, and thought about purple and thought about Skyburst. And he hung his head and wondered what he'd spent the last million years doing with his life.

Skyburst stared up at a similar grey metal ceiling, out of the corner of one darkened optic a fuzzy blue figure came into view leaning against the wall outside of the bars.

"I'm sorry." It said and Skyburst ignored it, back of his helmet leaning against the cold wall behind him, outside of the base the water flowed and swirled and heaved against the metal. Just enough pressure inside of the base to stop it from being crushed and just enough outside to stop it from falling apart after the crash. Skyburst was filled with pressure and it was pushing out, pushing out so much he was going to explode. The blue figure, arms folded didn't move, just watched him.

"I've talked to Starscream; he's agreed to think about letting you outta here." Said the blue fuzzy shape

"I don't give a scrap about what Starscream agrees to."

"Now Skyburst-" began the blue shape warningly

"No!" shouted Skyburst rounding on the blue Seeker who pulled back at his aggression "You've seen! You've seen Megatron's missing! We'll I tell yah he'll be back soon and when he is he's gonna kick that scrawny prissy Fragger right in his aft plate and right off that throne!" his fists trembled down where they hung by his lower legs, Thundercracker watched him in silence, dipped his head and then left. Skyburst didn't move from his seat and didn't comment when he left, he just watched him silently, judgingly and Thundercracker burned under his optics.

"Well I must say I think this is all going swimmingly!" Cried Skywarp derisively throwing his hands in the air, Starscream sulked on his throne, the brat king, chin resting on his fist and a pout pursing out his mouth childishly

"No need for sarcasm Skywarp." He grumbled, Thundercracker skulked into the Throne room head bowed and expression troubled neither of his fellow Seekers acknowledged his entrance but continued to pout and pull faces at each other, he loitered around the doorway dejectedly

"I'm just saying you really need to get a grip on the situation here, Meg's missing, Cloudquake's escaped, Shockwave's not responding to our hails, I don't trust that Soundwave as far as I can throw 'im and we all know that the guys aren't gonna follow your lead until you really step up 'ta the plate and do something!" cried the purple and black Seeker; Starscream frowned and pouted into the darkness, Skywarp waited for his reply, Starscream just continued to glower at the doors, Skywarp sucked his lips and blew out a big gust of air turning on his heel and throwing his arms up in the air uselessly

"What 'd'you expect me to do about it?" protested Starscream tilting his head to look at his purple Trinemate who turned on him disbelievingly

"Are you serious? I don't know! Be a Leader! Lead!" he cried, Starscream huffed and sulked some more before suddenly seeming to realize Thundercracker was there

"What do you think I should do Cracker?" Thundercracker looked up from where he had been staring moodily at the ground

"I think you should let Skyburst out of the Brig."

"Oh you always think that." Huffed Starscream turning away from him and disregarding his point entirely out of hand, Thundercracker locked his jaw

"That's because it's the right thing to do Starscream, you can't punish him for his Flight mate's betrayal." Starscream rolled his optics

"Since when did we do the right thing?" interjected Skywarp and Thundercracker glowered at him, Skywarp shrugged in reply. Starscream tugged up one corner of his lip into a frown

"Skywarp's got a point," Thundercracker shot the purple Seeker another accusing look "And yet would it not be the right thing to punish a Decepticon warrior- a Seeker- who allowed his Flight mate to betray his people and his cause? To punish a Seeker who knowingly allowed his ally to take a powerful weapon to the Autobot's? Cloudquake's power is quite dangerous isn't it? He is quite the weapon." Skywarp narrowed his optics thoughtfully

"I suppose..." he said, Thundercracker growled and threw his arms up into the air

"I can't believe this, Starscream? Really? We've already lost one Seeker this week now you wanna risk losing another?" Starscream turned to glare at him pensively

"Lose him?" he murmured questioningly

"Yes, what if by punishing him we drive him right into the Autobot's arms?" appealed Thundercracker plaintively. Starscream narrowed his optics

"Then we won't give him the chance."

There was a neat rap at the door, Optimus Prime looked up from his pad and a couple of sheets of Transformer sized papers fell out from behind it and tumbled on top of their brethren on his desk. He wished they'd just email him all of the paperwork they needed filling out. Prime set his pad down on the desk, grateful for the distraction, reading complaint letters from angry billionaire company owners always gave him a CPU ache

"Enter." He called, the door hissed open and a nervous mech stepped just into the doorway; Optimus leant back in his chair, just what he needed

"And what can I do for you Redalert?" He rumbled, Redalert twitched worryingly in the doorway

"I feel there's been a security breach." Optimus resisted rolling his optics

"Oh?" he said, though he already knew what Redalert was going to say

"The Decepticon! The Decepticon in our brig! In our base! It's a security breach! He could be transmitting information to his superiors already- not that he needs to seeing as Lord Megatron is in our Med-Bay!" Redalert's ear finials sparked blue intermittently throughout his tirade and Optimus watched them absentmindedly

"Well I see why you're distressed however I must ask you that, as one of my soldiers and most trusted allies, you trust me to be making the right decision on this." He said, Redalert cried out in protest but Optimus cut him off holding up a silencing hand

"Redalert," he said patiently "I have taken every precaution to make sure that there will be no dangerous security breaches and to assure that the utmost safety and care are taken in handling this situation. That is also why I am putting you in charge of keeping an eye on both Megatron and Cloudquake during their respective stay here. Is that okay with you?" said Prime deliberately. Redalert raised both brows clearly pleased

"Of course sir." He answered surprised by his Prime's level of easy compliance

"Good. Thank you, Redalert, for your clear devotion to the safety of your fellow Autobot's I feel much safer knowing that you are now on the job." Optimus smiled from behind his mask, Redalert nodded proudly; bowed and exited the room the door closing behind him. The mech left alone in the room breathed out heavily and frowned at the papers spread out all across his desk with a groan.

"So?" grinned Inferno "What'd'he say?" Redalert preened a little bit for a moment, a smug grin plastered across his face, before answering

"He's taken my opinions into deep consideration and has decided to put me in charge of the prisoner's security." He smiled proudly; the red fire truck grinned and then frowned bemusedly for a moment

"Uh, Red? ...Isn't that kinda already your job?" Redalert almost bust a gasket, one optic twitching furiously he bared his denta furiously for a second before letting out an irate screech

"He TRICKED me!"


Oh Optimus you old smarty-pants you!

Don't really like that end and it feels a little short this chappie but I felt I needed to cut it off there. Should'a really left it on a bit more of a cliffhanger but hopefully that whole Starscream bit should be enough of a cliffhanger for yah today. :[

Hope you enjoyed! R&R! -And tell me how I did writing the Autobot's! Its been a while since I've done it and I'm a bit rusty.