Is this… is it truly… A NEW CHAPTER!?

Yes, yes it is my friends. And I apologize for the long wait… writers block sucks. Just saying.

Okay, Chi is 23 now (finally, the prologue chapters are done) and we can get down to business, it's time for the plot to show up and for the feelings to start showing, because they have already developed.

Let's get this show on the road!

~.~ ~.~

"I need that clamp over here now!" Ratchet yelled as he tried to staunch the flow of energon from a mechs shoulder.

"I'm coming!" A 23 year old blonde woman shouted back as she jumped onto a hover board and sped to the berth with a clamp in her arms. "I can only go so fast Ratchet!"

"Well go faster!" The medic snarled back as she tossed him the clamp while she sped up the ramp attached to the berth. "You would think that you would have become faster in the past few years of helping me."

"Whatever Ratchet." The woman huffed. "I also know that the energon line that you're repairing isn't a major one. Therefore you only wanted me to speed up because you didn't want to clean up the mess."

"I could make you clean it up."

Now the woman scoffed. "I can't, remember? Energon is toxic to humans."

Ratchet grumbled something under his breath, but a smile was tugging at the corners of his mouth.

"Fine, Chi, and then you get to explain to Wheeljack why he has to stay in the med-bay longer because of Energon loss." Ratchet smirked down at her.

"He was going to have to stay in the med-bay anyway so that the mesh graphs and replaced lines can properly fuse with his systems." Chi grinned up at the medic. "So, it's a moot point."

"Smart-aft."

"Ass, Ratchet, I have an ass-not an aft."

Now the medic scowled down at her as he sent the command for Wheeljack to online. "Prowl would disagree with your language."

"Prowl disagrees with my language all the time." Chi shrugged up at him. "I'm used to it."

"That doesn't mean you have to purposefully try and irritate him."

"Not my fault that it irritates him. I'll talk the way I want to talk; he can either get over it or continue being irritated by it."

Ratchet's mouth opened like he was going to say something, but then he changed his mind and shrugged instead. The two of them fell into comfortable silence for several minutes as Wheeljack slowly onlined.

"The entire arm…" The inventor muttered slowly after his systems had finished calibrating.

"Yes, we'll have to build a new one." Ratchet sighed, and then subspaced his wrench and hit Wheeljack over the helm with it. "You fragging idiot. You KNEW that those two liquids would explode."

"That's why I used a smaller amount this time… I thought it would be different." Wheeljack let out a yelp as the wrench collided with his helm a second time.

Chi rolled her eyes at the antics of the two 'adult' mechs. With a sigh her attention was turned to the ICU where her guardians were after the last battle. She had once again been the target, and they had once again gotten hurt defending her. Deep inside her it hurt that they were hurt, she had discovered a while ago that she had feelings for the twins. But that didn't mean that she was comfortable with the fact. They were her best friends, her protectors, and her comic relief when things started getting too stressful. She didn't want to ruin that with some sort of a relationship. But that didn't mean that her heart would let her forget that she, well, loved them.

Ratchet and Wheeljack fell silent as they noticed that Chi was once again staring at the ICU. Worry was prominent on her face and both mechs knew what was going through her mind. Though she had never told them, they knew that she had fallen for the two frontliners.

/ Ratchet… when are we going to make it clear that we know about her feelings? / Wheeljack asked over the private comm. link.

/ Whenever you want to just blurt it out. /

/ Gee, Ratchet, you make is sound like I have no tact. /

/ That's because you don't. /

Wheeljack slapped Ratchet's arm with his only hand in retaliation to that comment, but then sighed and looked back down at the human girl.

"So… Chi…" Wheeljack began, catching her attention and gaining a what-do-you-want look. "When are you going to admit that you love the twins?"

Her blue eyes widened and she paled over, after which she immediately began stuttering denials and her cheeks turned redder than Red Alert's paint job.

"I told you." Ratchet huffed at Wheeljack, earning him another smack and a glare.

"Told him what?!" Chi squeaked.

"That he has no tact." Ratchet shrugged and then leaned against the berth. "So, when are you going to admit it?"

"What… how… When did you figure it out!?" She finally managed to squeak out.

"Three years ago when the two of them were in the ICU and you were insanely worried about them." Wheeljack's head panels flashed in utter amusement.

"You tend to stay in the med-bay as much as possible whenever they are in the ICU because of a battle." Ratchet shrugged. "That and we can tell that you worry about them whenever you stare in that direction."

"Gee, thanks guys." Chi snapped as embarrassment turned to irritation. "I didn't think it was that obvious."

"It is." Wheeljack and Ratchet chorused together.

"Well… Don't tell them. Please?" The human woman deflated and looked back toward the ICU.

"Why not?" Ratchet questioned slowly.

"Because I don't want them to know; it would just make things awkward."

Both sets of optics flickered in surprise at her statement.

"But…"

A sudden crash from the ICU halted the conversation and had Ratchet running in while Chi activated her hover board and launched herself off of the berth. The moment the board entered the ICU she yelled at the twins that she was okay and to calm down. They had been in their gladiator modes when they were damaged to the point of stasis. It had been a long battle, and five Decepticons that had been champions in the gladiatorial pits had attacked them while they were protecting Chi. They had slipped into their gladiator programming when her leg had been pinned under a slab of rock and she couldn't get away.

It terrified her when they were in their gladiator modes, they didn't seem like them when that strain of programming was active. It wasn't the underlying violence that they portrayed that scared her, because she knew they wouldn't harm her, it was the fact that the twins weren't the same as they were when it was off.

"Chi…" Sideswipe muttered as the gladiator programming deactivated. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah, thanks to you two." She offered them a tight smile. "Are you two okay?"

"We'll be fine." Sunstreaker stated as he fell back onto the berth. "Your safety means more than ours."

Chi tensed at the yellow twin's statement, and she had to bite her tongue to keep from telling them different. It was a common argument between the three of them.

"Did we at least beat them this time?" Sideswipe sighed.

"Yeah, all five of them." Chi snapped.

Her tenseness had all three of the mechs in the room pausing and staring down at her. Her hands were clenched into fists at her sides and her eyes were brimming with tears.

"Chi…"

"I'll see you guys later." She stated through clenched teeth, and then spun her hover board around and shot out of the door.

"What's her problem?" Sunstreaker huffed.

"You would think that she wasn't glad we onlined." Sideswipe stated quietly.

"She is overjoyed that the two of you onlined." Ratchet stated as he ran a few diagnostics on their systems. "Did you not notice her relief when your gladiator protocols shut off?"

"Yeah, but that doesn't really seem to mean anything." Sunstreaker stated in irritation. "She always runs out right after we online…"

"Kind of makes us think that she doesn't really want us around." Sideswipe stated without emotion.

Ratchet paused in his work to give the two of them an incredulous look, only for it to turn into one of realization. The two frontliners looked hurt that she never stayed long after they onlined, which—when he allowed himself to admit it—did seem like she didn't care about them. But the medic also knew that she had slight troubles admitting when she felt anything other than anger. The way she ran out of the room, and the message that Wheeljack sent to him over the comm. link, also helped Ratchet know that she really did love the two of them. It was fear that made her run out, fear that they would see how much she actually cared.

"She cares more than she lets on, Sideswipe. And I have a feeling that she wouldn't know what to do with herself if the two of you weren't near her constantly." Ratchet knew that he was walking a fine line. If he let the wrong words slip—even around these two with their denseness—they would figure out exactly what her feelings for them were.

"Yeah… well, she could show it more often." Sunstreaker huffed.

Ratchet stared at the yellow twin and surprise suddenly drifted across his faceplates.

"You two care about her more than you let on."

Both twins fell silent and still at Ratchets observation, they were watching him with critical optics. As if trying to decide wither or not to trust him with something.

"We don't just care about her…" Sideswipe started hesitantly, throwing Sunstreaker a glance that all but said he wasn't positive about this idea.

"We love her, Ratchet." Sunstreaker didn't even bother to return his twin's glance. Cold determined optics bored into the medic, as if daring him to tell the twins that it wasn't right.

Ratchet only met Sunstreaker's look with a calm light in his optics. The medic had assumed… but hadn't wanted to pry.

"I thought so." Ratchet nodded.

"But don't tell her!" Sideswipe blurted. "We don't want her to become awkward around us!"

Something occurred to the medic at that moment, and he fought back a groan. The twins didn't want Chi to know about their feelings for the same reason why Chi didn't want the twins to know about hers.

He was surrounded by what seemed to be high schoolers.

"Please Ratchet, promise you won't tell her." Sunstreaker surprised the medic by pleading with him.

Ratchet gave a heavy sigh, but nodded. "The two of you need to tell her though… or you might lose the chance to let her know how you feel."

And with that the medic left the ICU, activating his private comm along the way.

/Wheeljack…/

/What Ratchet?/

/You're not going to believe this…/

~.~ ~. ~

Interesting, no?

So, there we go. The first of many problems has been posed, and several more are on their way. I apologize again for the wait for this chapter!

If you've read it, please review it!

Until all are one,

Chistarpax