2018-05-08 Doesn't Mean Anything

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Doesn't Mean Anything
Date 2018/05/08
Location Lost Light - Oil Reservoir
Participants Sandstorm, Air Raid
Summary Sandstorm prepares for his next prank, and Air Raid fails to properly rib him over it.

The oil reservoir isn't exactly a popular hang out spot, which means it's perfect for Sandstorm's future plans - and for practicing said plans. Crouching on the docks, he holds a small device in one hand, and his toolbox in the other. Attaching the device to the toolbox, he activates it, ending up with a bubble of forcefield, a shimmering aura of purpleish light surrounding the toolbox. Similar to Trailbreaker's, but if someone with expertise studied it, they'd likely notice that it wasn't nearly as powerful. It didn't need to be.

Carefully, Sandstorm places the forcefield bubble on the surface of the oil. It bobs slightly, wobbling and sending ripples across the liquid, and after a moment it settles. The toolbox remains inside. Sandstorm smirks.

"Uhhh. Recreational science project?" Most mechs come to the oil reservoir to contemplate, but Air Raid shows up with a mop and pail. Punishment for /something/. Possibly running off for a few days to turn in his new frame voucher, which is why he's armored up like a proper jet and not a /monster/. So he's all smiles, even as he stumbles along without the balance of a tail. "You made a... bubble boat?"

"Something like that." Sandstorm looks up at Air Raid, raising an optic ridge and jerking his chin in the direction of the mop and bucket. "Spring cleaning?"

Reaching for the bubbled field, Sandstorm holds it in both hands as he stands and regards Air Raid. "Guess you got tired of being a freak, huh. I know an old group of primal guardsmen who could take a page out of your book."

Air Raid's smile weakens. "Not a freak - ! But... Yeah, needed the jet-bod back. Gotta' fly fast." He preens a little, with the subtle tilt of his wings, then grudgingly moves towards the dock, drawing a putty knife. "I'm here for an hour, so. What are you doing? Which... primal guardsmen?" He gets down on his hands and knees nearby, to scrape some gunk off the rim of the pool.

Sandstorm's rotor arms shift slightly, but whatever the gesture reflects, he doesn't say. "The Dynobots. Well, Dinobots now, I guess. And I'll tell you what I'm doing, but only if you promise to keep it to yourself. Can't have word getting out; it'll spoil my plans." There's a mischievous undercurrent to his tone, a glint to his optic that was definitely lacking the last time they spoke.

Air Raid successfully detects doubt! Or something like it, in Sandstorm's gesture. He stares at the rotors for a moment longer, then shakes his head. "I can't imagine the Dinobots as anything but... er, beastformers." There's a distant look in his stare, as he recalls something, then winces faintly before perking up. "Cross my spark." And he crosses his spark. "Up to no good?"

"You'd think they'd be happy you were getting your old frame back." Sandstorm sighs dramatically, shakes his helm - and then stops to look at Air Raid, brows knit. "Like...? No. I don't like anyone. We've been through this before, I'm pretty sure, but if you need a reminder I can give it to you."

Air Raid gets a little tripped up in his bravado, but he presses onward like the cocksure jet he is. "That's a bunch of slag. Else you'd be pretty fraggin' lonely on this ship." Again, his smile wavers, and he seems just a /little/ wary. "That a threat?"

Sandstorm's lip quirks at the corner. There's no more mischief in this smile, nor warmth. "I don't. Like. Anyone. And I keep it that way." A spin of his rotors is the snort he doesn't voice. "No. Why would I threaten you? It's just a reminder that I don't have friends. We're not friends."

"We're not?" Air Raid clearly takes offense to this. He grips the handle of his mop, frowning, wings swept back. "Why not? You've seen me fight. I kick ass!"

"What, you think everybody who's been on the same battlefield as you is your friend?" Sandstorm scoffs. "Hate to break it to you, but that's not how it works even if I wanted to."

Air Raid puffs up, but manages to direct his deflating sigh at his work, as he goes back to scrubbing a stubborn smudge. "So you hate everyone. That it? Seemed like you were in a decent mood."

"I didn't say I hated everyone," Sandstorm replies mildly. "I just don't like anyone. There's a difference. And so what if I was? It doesn't mean anything." It does, and the sullen slant of his tail rotor gives that away. Damnit. Has he been getting sloppy?

Air Raid doesn't reply for a lengthy moment, scrubbing so hard the metal of the floor scrapes. Woops. He whips around, abruptly, thumping his chest with a fist. "I'm the best strike jet in my team, /and/ I have a hot chopper boyfriend. I'm definitely friend material! And... And Sideswipe is definitely friend material too. So, if you like being in a good mood, you should look into liking people. Legit!"

The smile Sandstorm gives Air Raid now is sad, condescendingly so. "If I like being in a good mood, that's the opposite of what I should do," he says, slowly and carefully, like he's working with a newly-forged bean. "You think Vortex is gonna live very long? Or Sideswipe? Or you? We're at war. Have been for millennia, and you know what happens in war? All those friends you have, all those people you keep around because they make you happy - they die. And what are you left with? Nothing, that's what. So sure, you can have your friends, and when this is all over and they're all dead, you'll understand."

Air Raid stiffens, and the heat of his glare ebbs as Sandstorm speaks. He lingers there, and that fleeting sensation of fragility stirs him to react. "Tch! Whatever. I'm not about to school you on your backwards views. Enjoy your prank war." He pointedly snatches up his pail, tilts his mop against his shoulder, and begins to stalk away.

Sandstorm bites down a retort of I'm not the backwards one, and instead walks toward the exit himself, lengthening his stride to cut Raid off. "I will," he says instead, turning on the jet, nearly to the doorway. "And by the way, you missed a spot."

Then he's gone, pivoting on his heel and leaving, because if anyone gets to make the dramatic exit here it's Sandstorm.

Air Raid startles when he's cut off, and shoots a frosty glare up at Sandstorm, the mech he'd idolized once. He stands there long after Sandstorm moves off, and eventually brings his hand to his brow, swapping anger for a look of true unease.

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