Heya. Note: This is MovieverseXTFPrimeverse, so Dreadwing, Knockout and Breakdown are in this (though I don't think I've mentioned BD...) Anyhow. Other things:
-There will eventually be torture scenes (not for some chapters yet)
-There are no pairings.
-Yes, the Bots and Cons are dragons, but PLEASE DON'T SHY AWAY BECAUSE OF THAT; It's good writing and THE SUPERIORITY COMPLEX AND RELATIONSHIPS TRANSLATE VERY WELL TO DRAGONS. If you don't like dragons, imagine that they're flying robots.
-This story focuses mainly on the Cons.
In the Wake of War
I stared at my sketches. It was amazing how far they had progressed in the few weeks since I'd left the isolated village of Waterfort. I cast a glance around the barracks. There were only four women who worked here, and one of them didn't even live on base. There was me of course, but I don't know if you'd call me a woman. I was barely 18. Three of the four other women simply tied back their hair, but Mari and I weren't ever concerned about our appearance, so we had buzz-cuts like the men. I liked it; super low maintenance and you didn't stand out. But then again, my job made me stand out. I was here to keep tabs on the prisoners.
Nobody who knew anything about the prisoners expected me to stay long. Several would ask me if I'd written my will as I walked past. I ignored them; I would go about my work the way I would go about my work. Their opinion meant little to me. I had to admit, the work I did was hard. The prisoners were impossible to manage and even harder to get close to. They were dragons after all, and they had their pride.
There was one other person who did the same job as me, but there were bands of prisoners, essentially gangs, that interacted with one another and the one that Justin managed was a particularly isolated one. But he did retrieve tidbits about who liked who and who didn't like who and who had affairs with whom. And that was better than nothing, so the superiors kept him. Everyone else who had even so much as tried to interact with the Higher Clans (as they were called; the one Justin worked with was the Low Clan) either had no success, or, more likely, were killed. It was a dangerous job, and though it scared me, I had devised a system that seemed to be working. I would observe Clan activities from afar, sketching each dragon and assigning them an Identification Tag, which was a sort of nickname I thought up for them. They always had a number sequence that was their official Tag, but I might assign an informal nickname to a dragon who exhibited a particular behavior. For example, a large green female identified as 64442 was often flirting with males from other Clans, so I called her Jailbait.
All of the Higher Clans were dangerous organizations to begin with, but there were two that I was particularly warned against. These two were the Blackwings and the Decepticons. All the Clans had been rogue military organizations, but these two had been the worst. The Blackwings had been masters of destruction rivaled only by the Decepticons. The Decepticons were the archenemy of the Autobots, a small band of dragons that guarded the Coast under the command of their leader, Optimus Prime, and their liaison, Major Lennox. The prison where I worked was often called "the second Alcatraz" because of its location. The prison was a system of islands called the Isle of Thunder that was a one-and-a-half-week flight or 3 week boat journey from shore. The dragons of the prison could not fly such a distance, but if they were to try, then there were ships and dragons ready to stop them that regularly patrolled the seas between the Isle and the Coast. But though that stopped the loss of life on the mainland, violence between prisoners was frequent. Six or seven inmates died per year from Clan or personal conflict. Essentially, they had their own civilization on the Isle. They had territories (excluding the main island, which was communal) and sometimes hunted for their own fish in addition to the rations they were issued. Their hierarchies from the mainland war were thought to have dissolved, but no-one was really sure.
I generally sat somewhere that the Clans could see me, but out of the way. I did not wish for them to think that I was spying on them. For the most part I was left alone. I sighed, pulling my waterproof hood over my head as it began to rain for the third time that week. I had specialized equipment, much more than the ordinary troops. I had two uniforms; the outer one, which was standard waterproof camouflage clothes with a hood and thick yet light boots, and the inner one, a camouflage t-shirt. But I had something that the security troops didn't. I wore custom armor under my uniform. It was a light yet incredibly strong metal, the same that was in my boots, about an inch thick, and protected me from any major trauma to my internal organs. It was arrow-proof too. The stuff was so new that the metalsmith who was working with the combinations had forged it himself. I had a helmet, but I was not required to wear it at all times. It covered my head all the way down the back of my neck. It also attached to the back of my armor and held my head in place during extreme shock. It was nearly impossible to break the wearer's neck. I wore it if I was closer than I'd have liked to be to the dragons.
Justin was the reason that the superiors expected more from me. He didn't have any problems with establishing a relationship with his Clan, they'd say. Well, that was because his Clan was made up of rogues that saw the benefits of close human relations. The Higher Clans despised humans. But the superiors expected just as much from me as they got from Justin. Justin had been working with his Clan for five years. And for five years the superiors had not found a person who could connect with the Higher Clans. They expected information from the person in my position, and it was something that the person in my place could not give them. Until me. I had made it farther than any before. This was because of my identifying system. I had begun to place dragons in Clans based off of who they interacted with. I did not know which Clans were which, but I at least had established who didn't like who on a personal level. The superiors wanted more from me, but I seemed the most promising recruit, so they allowed me to stay. This confused people seeing as I was extremely young, a female, and was not originally enlisted in the army. But I was an observer. And that was what the superiors wanted. I had ended up here via a strange course. I had been sketching the wyverns (reptiles that had wings rather than front limbs and walked upright) near my remote hometown for years. I had learned their social habits and had collections of notes and sketches of them. One of my neighbors' brothers worked in the army, and knew one of the recruiters for the Isle. He had told the recruiter about me. I hadn't ever pictured myself doing anything besides the smattering of carpentry and blacksmithing my father did, but the army was the only way out of the sleepy little village that I'd called home. I had taken the job on the condition that I would never be in battle. They had explained that I wouldn't even be placed on a squadron. I was enlisted though. I had the rank of Private, but I had been told that if I proved myself, I would climb in the ranks quickly, as I would face no opposition. They were already considering advancing me. I honestly didn't care very much what markings I had on my uniform; I had no lust for power. I only wished to increase my status so as to increase my credibility. Justin was a Corporal. I hated having to respect him seeing as he was such a jerk to me; he didn't even allow me to speak to his Clan. Looking back, that was probably what saved me. If I'd associated myself with the Lower Clan, I would never have gained the respect of the Higher ones.
The closest I'd come to contact was when I'd exchanged a few words with a midnight blue alpha male called 86745 after I'd strayed too close to a smaller male from another Clan. He'd chased away the other dragon before frowning at me and asking me how long I expected to continue doing my job. I'd said "until I can't". He'd huffed and walked away. I had not informed the superiors of the conversation because I decided that getting excited over thirteen words would only portray my insecurity. But those thirteen words would influence my relationship with one of the Clans and save the lives of several prisoners.