Hello, readers! TheLegendaryCrystalWolf and I are going to take another stab at Battle for the Allspark, with some differences to the storyline. Let us know what you think!

This story is going to be AU in the fact that:

Starscream is still a Decepticon (though still not a big fan of Megatron)

Megatron and Starscream are still on Earth and causing trouble; Blitzwing and Lugnut were captured, though

Some other things that you will find out soon enough

Enjoy!

~Dark Maiden95

~*Chapter One: Soundless Terror*~

Rays of sunlight pierced through the half open blinds as the morning slowly wore on, illuminating the small bedroom. It was a simple room; hardwood floors, a black shag area rug, drawers filled with clothing off to one side, and a decent-sized bed. A few posters adorned the ivory walls as well. Soon, the bed's occupant, sixteen-year-old Elena Rae Saunders, began to stir in tiny fits as she gradually woke up. Cracking open her emerald-green eyes, Elena closed them tightly again when beams of sunlight stabbed at her eyes. Finally, after several moments, she gathered the courage to open her eyes and sit up.

Glancing at the nightstand, Elena saw that her digital clock read 8:30 AM. Aunt Rosa was probably long gone at work by now. The girl sighed; even on Christmas, her aunt wouldn't take a break from work and spend some time with her. Feeling her stomach rumble, Elena climbed out of bed to make some breakfast. If she was lucky, Aunt Rosa would come home tonight and have a Christmas present for her. Elena had had a very hard time selecting one for her, even with Professor Sumdac's help. The professor had been very good friends with Rosa for years and was almost like an uncle to Elena. But lately, Rosa had been so wrapped up with work that she hardly had time for either one of them.

Elena smiled to herself when she checked her appearance in the mirror. Her favorite outfit could brighten any day; a deep green jacket that matched her eyes perfectly, a yellow tank top with a small V-neck, dark blue jeans, and black and white checkered tennis shoes. For some finishing touches, Elena donned two earrings with tiny sapphires dangling from small gold chains, and a matching necklace with one large sapphire. Her flaming red hair, which stretched halfway down her back, had been pulled into a half-ponytail. The sunlight flickered to the teen's face again and she walked over to her bedroom window. The streets of Detroit were always a great sight to see, especially on Christmas Day. The snow falling, people out and about going to parties and singing carols (and the occasional last second Christmas shopper), and the enormous Christmas tree in the middle of the park.

When Elena lifted the blinds from her window, she recoiled in confusion; the streets were completely bare. No carolers or shoppers, not even any cars. Elena stared blankly out the window, scanning for any signs of life. Nothing. Something was very wrong.

Turning to leave the room and investigate the condo, Elena was halted in her tracks, jumping at the sight. As the surprise waned, the redhead scowled at the sight: a Soundwave toy. The tiny machine swayed back and forth, appearing to try harder as the girl stared in confusion. The glare deepened on the ginger's face when Elena approached the Soundwave toy and stomped down hard several times, making sure it was completely destroyed. She stared thoughtfully at the remains of the possessed dancer...had the toy been trying to play music? Having been deaf since birth, there was no way the girl could have known what kind of tunes that evil toy was dancing to. More importantly, though, how had it gotten into her room? Elena knew neither Professor Sumdac nor Aunt Rosa would have gotten her a Soundwave toy for Christmas since she couldn't hear its famous music. Looking around the room once more to make sure there were no more evil dancing dolls, Elena slipped her blue winter coat on and headed for the door. She had to find the Autobots, only they would be able to get to the bottom of this.

~.~.~.~.~

Elena whirled around to check her surroundings for what felt like the millionth time. Maybe she was just being paranoid, but she just couldn't shake the feeling that someone was following her. Her ears had been rendered useless when she was born, leaving her that much more vulnerable to a surprise attack. Seeing no one around, Elena pressed on, still not convinced she was alone. Glancing at the street around her, Elena was confused and a little scared that there was still no one out.

As her feet crunched through the deep snow, Elena paused. Something was off, way off. Slowly turning around, some low moans escaped the teen's throat, asking who was there. When her stalker(s?) didn't reveal themselves, Elena's green eyes darted in all directions, searching for a stick, a fallen street sign, anything she could use to defend herself with if she needed to. After several seconds of searching, her gaze landed on a flattened stop sign across the street. Without wasting a second, the redhead hurried over and snatched it up, looking around once more. This time, she did see someone – five someones – approaching down the street.

The Autobots.

Elena's heart leapt into her throat, overflowing with joy and hope as she ran as fast as she could towards them. As she got closer, she halted in her tracks; something was very wrong. Her eyes trailed up their bodies and widened in horror as they stopped walking. All five of them were wearing deadly glowers and Elena found ten blood-red optics piercing right through her soul. Frozen solid in terror and confusion, Elena noticed a familiar figure hovering behind the brainwashed Autobots – Soundwave.

"Impossible! This organic is immune to the music! She must be destroyed as well."

Strumming the strings of his wicked-looking guitar, Elena watched as Bumblebee took a step towards her, charging his stinger. Before the red-haired organic could blink, the yellow Autobot fired. Instincts took over and Elena swung the stop sign in her hand like a baseball bat, sending the plasma blast right back at Bumblebee. The traitorous ball of energy hit the bot square in the shoulder, making him recoil in pain. Glancing at her makeshift weapon in surprise, a look of determination crossed the deaf girl's face as she crouched into a battle stance.

Prowl was the next one to attack. He reached into his chest plates and flung his shurikens at Elena. She swung the stop sign almost blindly in a feeble attempt to keep up with the stars' blinding speed, dodging all the while. Elena winced when she felt one of the shurikens nick her waist, but it only left a small cut, so she returned her attention to her Autobot foes.

Looking up just in time to see Bulkhead throw his giant wrecking ball, Elena dove out of the way just moments before it hurled through the air. As she stood up, Elena saw Soundwave run his hand down his guitar again; this time all five Autobots readied their respective weapons and charged for the girl. Scrambling back quickly, Elena surveyed the situation. There was no way on Earth that she would be able to take on all five Autobots at once. Her only choice was to repel them long enough to flee to safety.

Swinging her stop sign as fast as its weight would allow her, Elena managed to reflect most of Prowl and Bumblebee's projectile attacks, dodging the others and backing up all the while. Ratchet had used his giant magnets to seize control of Bulkhead's wrecking ball and threw it in the teen's direction. She leapt out of its path again and hurried to her feet. Whirling around, Elena was halted from escaping before she'd even taken a step.

There was Optimus Prime. His crimson optics glared down at the red-haired girl with a look that could burn a hole through steel. Before Elena had time to snap out of her fearful trance, the Autobot leader raised his Ion Axe and sliced into the girl's body.

The stop sign slipped from Elena's fingers and clattered onto the snowy cement. An ear-splitting shriek of agony escaped Elena's throat as the girl collapsed onto the ground, clutching her wounded torso. Terror welled up inside the redhead as she observed the snow around her quickly turning scarlet. Out of the corner of her eye, Elena saw Optimus raising his axe again. With one last jolt of adrenaline, the teen rolled out of the weapon's range and climbed to her feet. In her dizzied panic, the redhead clumsily darted down a nearby alleyway, her knees buckling again when she reached the end. A trail of blood dotted the snow behind her, and a large red puddle was forming beneath her.

"Leave the organic," Soundwave commanded when the Autobots moved to approach the alley, "she will perish soon anyhow." With that, he hearded his brainwashed army further down the road. On one of the rooftops behind them, a small figure fussed with a security camera before running off in the opposite direction.

Tears streamed down Elena's face as she hugged herself in a vain attempt to suppress the excruciating pain. Daring to look down, she saw that her entire front had been stained in the crimson liquid. Her breathing was heavily labored as well.

Elena wasn't sure if she was terrified or relieved when her vision began to blur. As her vision slowly faded, memories flashed through the ginger's mind at warp speed: memories of Aunt Rosa before she became the workaholic she was now; Professor Sumdac teaching her sign language at age three, and later teaching her how to read; playing with his daughter Sari a few times when they were younger.

As the memories dissolved from her mind, Elena's world gradually faded to a black oblivion. She wasn't even aware of the giant figure looming over her.

Aunt Rosa...Professor Isaac...goodbye.

~.~.~.~.~

Sari smiled with satisfaction as she watched the Substitute Autobots leave. She was just glad to have her family back.

"Well," she sighed, "What do you guys say we go home and have that party?"

"Sounds good to me," Bumblebee nodded, "after all that time being Soundwave's yes-man, I could use some fun!"

"Yeah," Bulkhead concurred, "I won't let Soundwave ruin my Christmas!"

"Let's go," Optimus smiled, "I'm sure we could all use a little holiday cheer right now. Transform and roll out!"

As the bots morphed into their respective vehicle modes, something down the street caught Sari's eye. There was something in the snow...

"Hop in, Sari," Bumblebee said cheerfully as he opened his passenger door.

"One minute." Sari closed Bumblebee's door and walked down the sidewalk, gasping loudly when she saw a good-sized puddle of blood. Looking away, her eyes followed the red trail down the alleyway.

"What's Sari doing," Bulkhead asked as he watched his techno-organic friend walk cautiously down the alleyway.

"Dunno," Bumblebee replied, "I think she went to check on something."

The Autobots nearly jumped out of their armor when a blood-curdling scream pierced through the air.

"Sari!" In less than an instant, the Autobots rocketed to the alleyway as Bumblebee transformed and rushed over to his smaller friend.

"Sari, what's wr..." Kneeling down, Bumblebee followed Sari's horrified gaze to the form of a teenage girl lying motionless in a small pool of blood. "Holy Primus! Ratchet, get over here!"

In seconds, the aged medic was hovering over the girl as well. It was hard to miss the horror in his optics as he gently scooped her into his servo, examining her hastily.

"She's still alive," he barked, "but she doesn't have much time! We have to get her back to base now!" Without waiting for the younger bots, Ratchet transformed carefully around his unconscious patient, placing her on the gurney in the back of his ambulance form.

"Wait, doc bot," Bulkhead cried through the comm. link, "shouldn't we take her to a hospital?"

"There's no time," Ratchet shouted back, "she's lost a lot of blood already and the nearest hospital is halfway across town! She'd never make it!"

Ratchet drove through Detroit as fast as his vehicle mode would allow, but it still felt like ages before Autobot headquarters came into view. As the garage door opened, the medic rocketed through the doorway and didn't stop until he'd reached the med bay. Carefully laying the girl on the berth in the center of the room, Ratchet carefully unbuttoned and removed her ruined coat, quickly discovering that it wasn't the only piece of clothing she would need to replace. Moving the pieces of her torn clothes apart, Ratchet examined the entire wound carefully, almost sickened by how long and deep it stretched.

How in the name of Primus and the Allspark was this girl still alive?

Shaking his head, Ratchet attached an IV with an anesthetic to his patient's arm to ensure that she wouldn't wake up in the middle of the procedure. No human surgery would save this girl now. He prepared his supplies, praying that he wasn't already too late.

~.~.~.~.~

A few miles outside of Detroit, a figure rocketed through the night sky, carried by her silver jet pack. If one looked closely enough, one could see two crimson eyes glowing in the darkness.

Oh, boy, she smirked, Dad's going to love this!

Before long, the figure spotted the cave entrance on top of the mountain. Moonlight filtered into the giant room, illuminating her as she landed. Jet black hair stretched down the sixteen-year-old girl's back, messy from the flight. She was clothed in a navy sweatshirt, unzipped to reveal a magenta tank top underneath with a V-neck. The girl also donned blue jeans and black and white tennis shoes. A ruby hung around the teen's neck and dozens of small diamonds dangled from chains on her earlobes.

The rest of the room was pitch dark, save for two glowing blood-red optics.

"Ah, Rina," a deep, gravelly voice sighed with pleasure, "back from your little journey, I see." Rina looked up as Megatron, leader of the Decepticons, stepped out from the shadows and lowered his servo to her level.

"You're gonna love what I got today, Dad," Rina snickered as she stepped onto the offered servo and jumped onto Megatron's shoulder, dropping the tape into his other hand.

"Ah, yes. Laserbeak returned with Soundwave a short while before you arrived," her father replied. "The girl is dead, I presume?"

"Dead as a doornail," Rina replied with confidence. "There's no way a pathetic human could have survived something like that."

"Hmph." Megatron snickered in satisfaction. "Very good. Now we must focus on finding Blitzwing and Lugnut."

~.~.~.~.~

Ugh...huh? No way. There is no way I can possibly still be alive.

As her eyes began to crack open, Elena lay still on the berth as she came to grips with her situation. Slowly scanning the room, she finally realized that, yes, she was indeed still alive. But...why did she feel so strange? Her eyesight was a lot clearer than she remembered it being before, and...was that beeping she heard?

Wait...I can hear?! How?! Bolting upright, Elena discovered that she was in some kind of laboratory, but everything was far too big for a human to use. She wasn't strapped down, or hooked up to anything. Her arms and legs felt kind of stiff as well. Forcing herself to remain calm, Elena remained on the berth as she tried to formulate an escape plan.

Okay. If you can just figure out a way to climb down from this giant table...

The sound of a door opening stopped Elena from planning any further. Freezing in fear, the teen watched as Ratchet entered the med bay.

"Oh, you're awake!" It was hard to detect the relief in his voice, but it was there. "We were..." he cut himself off when he saw Elena's terrified face. "It's fine, kid. We're not gonna hurt you." He raised his servos in surrender and approached the berth.

"Stop right there!" The medic froze in his tracks as the patient screeched out the order. Seconds later, she placed a palm to her mouth, as though shocked that she'd just spoken.

"Look, kid, you're safe," Ratchet tried again, "no one's gonna..."

"I said stay away!" The redhead bolted to her feet and crouched into a defensive stance, looking down when she felt something slide out of her arms. "Wait...what..."

"Calm down, I'll explain every..."

"What did you do to me?!" Elena shouted, pointing the two neon green blades at Ratchet. "Why do I have swords in my arms?!"

Before Ratchet had a chance to answer, the med bay door swung open again, and the rest of the Autobots filed in.

"Ratchet, what's going on in here," Optimus demanded, not noticing that Elena was staring right at him.

Terror was written all over the teenager's face as images of Optimus nearly slicing her in half rushed through her mind.

"Hey, shh! It's okay," another girl's voice entered Elena's ears and she exited the flashback to see Sari holding her upper arms gently. "These are the Autobots. They're here to help you. In fact, Ratchet here saved your life."

"W-what?"

Now completely baffled, Elena looked past Sari at the five Cybertronians. Studying them more carefully, she could clearly see that all of their optics were a bright cyan once again. There was no trace of malice or violence, either. Sari and Ratchet visibly relaxed when they saw that Elena was calming down.

"Now, kid," Ratchet calmly addressed, "in order to save your life, I had to turn you into a techno-organic. That means you're part Cybertronian now – part robot."

Elena's eyes widened at this. Ratchet was surprised and more than a little relieved that she didn't lose her cool again.

"Your organic body was too badly damaged to salvage, I had no choice." Ratchet looked down at the green-eyed cyborg with regret.

"It's fine," Elena shook her head, a smile forming on her face. "I'm just grateful I'm alive at all, really. And I can't thank you enough for restoring my hearing."

"What? You mean you couldn't hear before," Bumblebee asked, a bit shocked. Elena shook her head.

"No. I've been deaf since I was born. I don't know how it happened, but this is the first time I've ever heard anything." She didn't add that it was her first time speaking any intelligible words, as well. It was a mystery to her how she'd learned, but she could worry about that later.

"That would mean that Soundwave couldn't control her like the other humans," Prowl deduced. "The music can't control someone who can't hear it, after all."

"Kid, mind tellin' us who did that to you," Ratchet requested, pointing to Elena's bloodstained clothes.

Elena eyed the Autobots thoughtfully, unsure how to word her answer. Her seafoam green optics lingered on Optimus for several long moments. Sighing deeply, she faced Ratchet.

"Soundwave," she answered. "Soundwave discovered that I was immune to his music and had you all attack me. When none of you managed to hurt me, he snatched Optimus's axe and slashed me with it."

"I see," Ratchet grumbled angrily as Bumblebee and Bulkhead growled angrily to each other. Prowl's expression was tough to read, and Optimus just looked ashamed. "Well, kid, what's your name?"

"Elena Saunders."

"All right, Elena," Ratchet continued, "I'm gonna need to keep you here for a couple of weeks while your body gets used to the Cybertronian technology. You got a mom or dad we need to talk to?"

Elena's face fell and she looked away with a glare. "No, just my aunt. There's no need to call her."

"But won't she notice if you're gone for a few weeks," Bulkhead asked, dumbfounded.

"I doubt it, she spends all her time at work, anyway."

"Okay, then. You need to get some rest now, I'll be back to check on you later."

Elena sat back down on the berth, watching everyone file out of the med bay. Lying down on her back, she was fast asleep before she even realized it.

~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~

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