Jack sighed as he looked around the training room. Almost everyone was out, the 'bots on recon along with Raf and Miko, the only ones in base besides himself were Ratchet, Bulkhead (who was still recovering from his injuries) and the newest addition to team prime, Smokescreen.
He'd followed the newest 'bot, in case the mech got lost (he was still getting used to the base, after all), and had found himself watching silently as Smokescreen trained.
The 'bot had yet to notice him, his focus set entirely upon the holograms that he attacked with a fierocity Jack knew without doubt was from anger.
The raven human was curious about the new 'bot, which he later admitted to himself was why he'd mostly followed the mech. They'd spoken a bit while Jack showed Smokescreen around base and helped the 'bot find an alt mode. The teen felt there was something more that rested beneath the surface, something that bothered his new acquaintance, and Jack wanted to know what.
Sometimes Jack hated his almost unnatural empathy.
But he was never wrong when it came to others and their burried emotions, the anger in Smokescreen's optics was proof of that.
Jack silently climbed up onto one of the hanging catwalks, then awkwardly cleared his throat, gaining Smokescreen's attention.
The 'bot immediately replaced his angry expression with fake cheerfulness, and he reached over to the control panel, pausing the holo-projections.
"Hey! Need something?"
Jack was quiet for a moment, staring at the mech, who shifted slightly.
How was it that a human could make him so uncomfortable?
Most likely his eyes. The dark blue-grey orbs seemed to have the ability to see into one's very soul with ease.
Jack finally spoke.
"You don't have to pretend, you know."
"Pr-pretend? What do you mean?" Smokescreen sputtered out.
Jack smiled slightly, leaning forward, elbows resting casually on the rail.
"You're angry." He stated, simply. "Mind if I ask why? Or is it personal?"
Smokescreen blinked in slight surprise. The teen had given him an option, either to tell him or not, and the onyx haired male wasn't pushing him in either direction. He was letting Smokescreen decide himself.
"Well...It's not really personal...And I'm not sure a fleshy could help." Smokescreen admited, hoping he hadn't offended the human with the last comment.
Jack smiled again, inter-twining his fingers as he continued to stare at the 'bot.
"Maybe not, but it's worth a shot, if you want to get it off your chest. Besides, I've always been a pretty good listener."
Smokescreen smirked slightly.
Jack nodded quietly.
"Well...Ah, slag it. I'm just feel so...so useless. While everyone else has already proved their worth, I'm stuck here! It's so...so frustrating!"
As though to prove his point, the 'bot planted his fist firmly into one of the walls. Jack remained silent, not even flinching at the loud, solid slam that reverberated through the air.
"I hate feeling like I can't do anything, like there's no way that I can help...I know I'm kinda young to be a soldier, but I mean look at me! I've worked hard to get this far, but none of the others seem to think I can do anything right! I just...!" He paused, sighing as he lay a hand on the wall and looked down.
"I just hate being useless for the Autobot cause."
Jack was silent for a moment, pondering his words. He then spoke.
"If it makes you feel any better, I don't think...no, think isn't the right word. I know, that you arn't useless to the Autobot cause. I mean, look at what you did just last week! You got Starscream, you helped the others out in a major way! Don't underestimate yourself, Smokescreen.
"I know how you feel, I really do. I feel like sometimes, all I am is a liability. But then I look back, at the things Miko, Raf and I have done, and I realize I couldn't be more wrong. The others may not think you have enough skill, true, but I just watched you take down ten holoform enemies in five minutes.
"You've got skill, and once everyone else see's that, they'll be glad to have you on team Prime. I know that I am."
Smokescreen stared at Jack, shocked at what the raven teen had said. He then smiled, moving closer to the human.
"Wow...Thanks, kid. I...I guess you really do understand."
Jack smiled shyly as he moved away from the rail.
"Yeah, I guess I do. Do you think that maybe you could do me a favor?"
Smokescreen's brow furrowed, but he nodded.
"Uh, yeah, I guess?"
"I noticed that you haven't called me by my name. So if you don't mind, I'd like it if you'd call me Jack. You are part of the family now, so there's no need to not use my name, right?"
Smokescreen blinked, but then grinned. He reached over and ofered his hand to the teen. Jack smiled and sat, situating himself. Smokescreen carefully moved his hand away from the catwalk and held the onyx haired male at optic level.
It felt wierd to say the name, so odd in Cybertronian terms. But it felt nice to see the human's eyes light unconciously with recognition at the sound of his name.
"Hey Jack...Wanna go for a drive? I'm still trying to find my way around, what was it called? 'Jasker'?"
"Close, it's called 'Jasper'. And sure, I;d enjoy going on a drive." The teen replied, smiling as he was set on the ground.
Smokescreen shifted, letting Jack climb in.
As the raven male set his hands on the steering wheel (for appearances sake, of course), Smokescreen finally came to a conclusion.
Maybe humans weren't so bad after all.
Jack grinned as Smokescreen slowed to a stop in a parking lot. Leaning back into the seat, Jack folded his arms behind his head.
"That's basicly all Jasper has to offer. Not exactly the entertainment capital of the world, but it's home." He said, smiling lightly as he stared out the window at the nearly empty streets.
The door popped open and Jack got the message, climbing out and going to lean on the building that sat before Smokescreen.
"I feel sorry for ya kid."
Jack chuckled slightly, crossing his arms. He was about to reply when-
"Oh great." Jack muttered before looking up.
"Uh, Vince! What're you doing here?"
The red-head smirked as he approached the raven male, his friends following in his wake.
"Passing by. What's with the car? Tryin' to compensate for somethin'?" Vince asked, leaning his elbow against the car. Smokescreen felt disgust boil in his energon lines, this 'Vince' was obviously someone who was all talk, no brains.
"Nah, a friend lent it to me. Gone for the weekend so he let me try it out." Jack replied smoothly, moving away from the wall.
"Hunh, makes better sense. For a second I thought this was yours, but seriously. Why'd a loser like you have a car like thi-iisss!"
Vince yelped when the car suddenly jerked backwards, making him stumble away.
"Wh-what the heck?"
"Oops! Forgot to set the brake!" Jack quickly supplied, moving to Smokescreen and climbing in.
"Sorry Vince! Well! Look at the time, gotta go! See ya!"
With that, Smokescreen took his que and quickly pulled out of the 'lot, taking off down the road.
Jack tried to give a dissaproving look, but failed when a grin broke out.
"Smokescreen, you really shouldn't have done that." Jack said, though he laughed slightly, showing he wasn't angry in the slightest.
"What? That loser called you a loser! I've got'cha back Jack!"
The teen laughed, leaning forward to rub the dash'.
"Well, let's make this our little secret, okay? I don't think Optimus would really approve of you nearly running over someone's foot."
They both laughed for a moment, then the 'bot replied.
"No, probably not, huh?"
Everything was silent for a few moments, though it was comfortable one. THen Jack spoke up.
"...Thanks for standing up for me."
If Smokescreen had been in his mech form, he would've smiled.
"You're welcome. Besides, what're friends for?"
So I wrote this because when I saw the newest episode, I loved Smokescreen! He's awesome! And I thought it would be cool to see a friendship moment between Jack and Smokescreen, since there were a few scenes with Jack and Smokescreen talking to eachother. Anyway, I hope you all liked it!