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2015-03-26 Two Troubles

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Two Troubles
Date 2015/03/26
Location Lost Light - Command: Rodimus's Office
Participants Hustle, Rodimus
Summary Hustle confesses. Rodimus cares.

Lost Light: Command -- Rodimus's Office (#126Rh)

A small plaque reads 'Captain's Office -- Rodimus of Nyon'. There are flames painted around the doorway.

FLAMES.

AROUND THE DOORWAY.

Everything else about the room beyond frankly pales in comparison to that. Yes, the walls are a deep, vivid magenta. Yes, there's a large desk covered with doodles. But there are FLAMES painted around the DOORWAY and really, what else needs to be said?


After some very angry soul-searching in the furthest part of the bottom of the ship that Hustle could find (no, not -that- bottom of the ship), she has decided that decided that it's better to get this over with than delay it any longer. Her moral compass is doggedly pointing north and no matter how many times she tries to bury it in magnets of forgetfulness (and potentially folk songs induced by said magnets), its stern, frowning needle finally burst through her protests and pointed directly at the Captain's office.

Upon setting foot in said office, however, Hustle has deep misgivings. It's like stepping into some level of Camien hell. She left to ESCAPE flames, not get CONFRONTED BY THEM. Solus keep Windblade's mouth shut about the Captain's paintjob or he will be WORSE than insufferable.

"HEY CAPTAIN," she begins, hands on hips, trying to ignore the, ahem, 'decor'. ".... you better go ahead and brig me before I change my mind."


"I hate brigging people," says Rodimus where he is doodling something doubtlessly meaningful and important on his desk with a laser etcher. There are a handful of datapads at his elbow but nothing is urgent enough to beep at him, so it can't be that important.

Rodimus glances up, the flicker of his smile a welcome that invites Hustle further in. If she dares. The flames on the doorway, after all, are mirrored on his chest: a bit more stylized maybe, a bit more angular, but it's all flames, flames, flames. "You should've tried next door. Magnus /loves/ it. Too late, though! What's up?"


"Oh well, chain of command and all that. You're the captain so you get first priority, y'know? Anyways, I'm here to turn myself in because I have been lying like floor panneling since I set foot on this ship." Hustle walks over to the desk, entering the Primary School Decoration Project office. She glances down at the doodles, wondering why in the world this mech is carving things into ... no. No, just best not to think about it. It will only depress you more, Hus.

"I am not, in fact, any sort of valuable Camien dignitary or officer; the others have been graciously covering for me, maybe to save face, maybe because they're decent people - but truth is, I'm a stowaway."


Tapping the end of the engraver against his lip, Rodimus leans back in his chair. His expression is thoughtful. "I'm pretty sure that's not how chain of command works." But it's not exactly something he's put a lot of /thought/ into, or made a /study/ of, so he tosses that little objection to the side.

Sitting up, Rodimus leans forward to study Hustle as she studies the desk. One might expect crude scribbles -- Possibly a dead Megatron with a truly mighty Rodimus standing with foot planted on the fallen warlord's is chest, right? Or maybe DECEPTICONS SUK, AUTOBOTS ROX. OR OR OR something stunningly /crude/-crude. -- but instead it looks like fragments of primal vernacular.

"Have you done anything to impede in the operations of this ship?" asks Rodimus in his best Magnus voice. "Harmed or hindered any member of the crew? Misappropriated or misused any of our supplies?"


"Not that I'm aware of," the fembot answers easily. She has a feeling he might try to let her off with some kind of a warning and her conscience is not going to let that happen. "Did I fail to mention I'm also an escaped prisoner stowaway?" She grins at that, not realizing she's grinning. It's kind of an autonomic response to trouble.


"I--" No. Rodimus. Don't tell that story. The tale is almost visible as he catches it against his teeth, swallowing back every word that threatens to whisper past his lips. "--see," he finishes with an answering grin. That is not the appropriate response of authority to confessed crimes. "But you still haven't done anything against this ship or the crew, right?"


Hustle sighs. Dammit, arrest her! He's just -not going to- is he? Her spoiler flops down against her back like the ears of a lop rabbit. Flop flop. "No. I don't -want- to do anything like that. I just..." She turns to look at the wall. UGH RED AND MAGENTA. Keeps looking anyways, tensing up like she wants to run or pace to get it out of her system. Her hands ball up at her sides. "I don't want anyone to get hurt, I never did, which is why I've been avoiding everyone. If you guys think I'm some kind of security officer when I'm not that could put people's lives in danger, and that's -not right-. I couldn't live with myself if that happened." She snaps back to looking at Rodimus. "I was imprisoned because I have a hard time taking orders and when someone tells me 'don't go into that room' my first thought is 'can I get in there without anyone finding out'. Breaking and entering, petty theft -- but I always put things back, just in creative places with maaaybe a map and clues? For fun? -- and disobeying orders. I never fit in back home, never fit into any mold, never settled down and dutifully followed the Way like everyone else, and I was enough of a headache that they locked me up."


When she droops, Rodimus's expression brightens in a laugh that he keeps out of his voice. "Then I don't think you're really in much danger of brig time," he says almost apologetically. /Almost/. There's more of a tease to his tone than true apology. "Well, probably. I guess it depends on what you're rearranging and who's stuff you're rearranging. Look, the whole -- taking orders thing? Disobeying? It's not exactly, uh. Well, I mean, talk to the crew. I get where you're coming from. I think what's more important is that you're trying to do good. If you skate along following rules but don't help people, because it's not in the rules that you have to, that's way worse than breaking rules to help someone." Somewhere, Magnus frowns.


"I just wanted to let you know what I can really do, so that I don't get assigned to a duty that I -can't- do, and avoid getting someone hurt, or worse, because I can't do that job," Hustle explains. "I break into places. Hack locks, swipe things. I can fool people, talk circles around them - but I don't want to do these things to hurt anyone." She brightens a bit. "I do it just to see if I can. Push myself to see how far I can get and how good I really am. You asked me last night what I wanted to do with myself? Truth is, I don't know. I don't know what I want out of life, where I'm going or what I'm supposed to be doing. I just wanted to be free."


"Well, at least I know where to go if we need someone to sneak in and reverse-steal a present on Magnus's desk." In fact, Rodimus looks rather caught up by the idea. He refocuses on Hustle with a grin. "I'm glad you told me. I'm glad you trusted me enough to tell me. But I'll judge you based on what you do here, not whatever happened on Caminus, okay? You're free to stay here, or to leave. Free to figure it out as you go."


Hustle grins widely. Rodimus may yet have another convert to add to his collection of .... Drift? Maybe it was just Drift. Who knows. "Thanks. Just... forget what I said last night. My conscience makes me cranky."


Rodimus glances down at his desk and rubs his thumb over a mark that looks little different than the others. "I know a thing or two about that," he says, looking back up at her with a wry smile and shadowed eyes. His expression brightens a moment later, leaving the shadow nothing but a cloud passing through the sun. "I'll tell Ultra Magnus, Drift, and Soundwave, but it'll be confidential to us, okay? That way no one expects more than you can give."


"Sure you can keep Magnus from arresting me?" Hustle laughs.


"I'll make it an order," Rodimus promises.


Hustle nods. Her hands unclench and she places them back on her hips. "All right then, looks like I owe you a favor. Gonna have to pay that back somehow. I don't like owing people things."


Rodimus leans back again with an easy gesture and resumes the doodle that she'd interrupted. "I'll trust you to remind me if I forget," he says, accepting the favor but apparently attaching little importance to it -- certainly less than she seems to.


"I'll keep a running tab," Hustle chuckles as she turns to leave, stopping just at the door as it opens. "Oh and - you still aren't my Captain. Not yet. Some things have to be earned."


Rodimus glances up at Hustle, and appears to think about arguing with her. In the end, all he says is, "You're still one of my people as long as you're on this ship. It's up to you to decide if you're crew or passenger." He tips two fingers at her in a brief wave as she heads out.

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