2015-04-19 Quiet in the Library

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Quiet in the Library
Date 2015/04/19
Location Lost Light - Recreation -- Library
Participants Swivel, Ultra Magnus, Moonlight, Slugfest
Summary Exploring the stacks!

Lost Light: Recreation -- Library

Meant as a place for quiet study and public record, this storeroom is a repository of information. Whole collections of datapads fill shelves along all of the walls and the multiple diving partitions, giving the space a very 'full' feeling. While many of these pads contain a copy of Cybertronian knowledge and study, many still are empty, meant to be filled with what is discovered from the continuing exploits of the Lost Light. Both a library and record hall, this room shares what is known and means to add to it with what is found.

Inside the entrance is the main desk, unmanned, but the terminal there serves as a nexus to track what datapads have been checked out and by whom. From this entry, there are stairs down and up as there are two levels to this library, one thematically purple and the other predominantly red. The central connecting space is open, allowing for those below to view who might be above and vice versa.

It is a place for peace and quiet and enriching one's mind. Unfortunately, Swivel isn't the best at being quiet. She is humming merrily to herself, freestyling the tune with little rhyme or rhythm, as she walks very slowly along one of the large shelves, just looking at all of the datapads but taking none. It could be that the femme is browsing rather than looking for something specific. But either way, didn't anyone tell her that humming is rude, and if not rude, at least annoying? Probably not.

Though the weight of each individual step is undeniable, Ultra Magnus does not have much difficulty with remaining quiet. The shelves are close enough together in parts of the library that a bot of his proportions needs to move with care to avoid collision, but this, also, does not present him with much of a problem. The intermittent and irrhythmed sound intruding from around the next set of shelves, however, does attract his attention and present at least something of a problem. Frown faint, but continuing, he rests one hand around the edge of a stand of shelves, and looks around the side into the next aisle, pauldron and head tilted at an angle as he observes the source of the unexpected noise.

Moonlight is curious about a few things. And what better place to indulge curiosity than the library? Well, there might be a few other places, but none of them come to mind that are also present on the ship. So, here she is. What catches her attention almost immediately is that someone is humming. She smiles to herself; at least someone is being cheerful, even if this isn't the best place for it.

        Despite a slight smile, there is distant and ponderous expression upon the face of Swivel. She puts up a hand as if to touch something on the shelf, but then stops just shy of making contct. Her hand remains up for a moment longer, and then she withdraws it. The humming dwindles into a few periodic notes between brief pauses and finally concludes. 
        It takes a few moments for Swivel to realise that she is become the focus of attention by not just one, but two other individuals. She first notices Moonlight, as the most of her is not obscured by a shelf. "Oh... 'lo there. Again. Yeah.... again." Swivel's faint smile increases in magnitude. "Guess both us pod peeps gotta lot ta catch up on.... I mean... war-wise. Maybe. If it really matters... I mean, it matters to me... but I can't speak for you. Well, I can, but I really shouldn't." The femme twitters out a nervous little laugh. Just imagine how more babbly her babbling would be if she realised a large, frowny, imposing mech were also present.

A tiny stego is in the library! He's in a corner, surrounded by coloring books, and holding a crayon in his mouth. His little front feets hold onto the page while he colors.

"There is a great deal of material in our data library about the events of the war," Ultra Magnus states factually from the lofty height of his angled lean.

Emerging out from behind the shelf, he subjects them both to a long moment of study. He looks very solid and serious and not at all like someone who could even identify a coloring book.

Moonlight laughs at Swivel's babbling, though not at Swivel herself, if the femme can make the distinction through her nervousness. "I don't care overly much about it from a personal point of view, though I'll listen to anyone who wants to talk about it," she says to Swivel. She looks like she's about to say more, but then Ultra Magnus speaks. She looks upwards at him, inclines her head politely, and smiles a bit. "I'm sure there is," she agrees somewhat solemnly. Then she turns back to Swivel. "I'm looking for something quite different," she goes on to say. As of yet she hasn't looked towards the corner of cuteness.

        A deeper, mechlier voice causes Swivel to nearly jump right where she stands, and she pivots around, looking wildly about until her gaze fixes on Ultra Magnus. She looks up, way up and stares at the mech in a stupor. When she regains her speech, she makes a few small stuttering noises before finally managing to say, "Thank you. I, I imagine there is... here." She glances at the shelves again, and then twists her torso and cranes her neck so that she may see Moonlight, whom she'd turned away from in surprise. "So what're ya looking for? Star charts? Oh wait, y said you was in trade not exploration. Hmmm..." 
        Swivel was just turning back to Ultra Magnus and his shelf-peeking ways when something small and cute catches her sights. Swivel's response? An unabashed, girlish giggle, unlike the nervous little fluttery sound she'd made earlier.

Slugfest looks up from his coloring when he hears the giggle. He had been oblivious in his coloring that anyone else was around. "Why all so many peoples around all of sudden?"

Emerging from the comparative 'shelter' of the shelves as he strides forth, Ultra Magnus slants a measured look down across the advent of Slugfest with a slight deepening of his frown, and he shakes his head slightly. In a ground down noise from the depths of his frame not unlke the clearing of his throat, he says, "The data is available for anyone who wishes to avail themselves, Slugfest."

After a beat's pause, he says with a slight shift of browplate and a particularly mild voice: "Though it is more usual to make use of the library without musical accompaniment..."

"Good observation. Yes, I'm just looking for anything that might be of interest to a trader such as myself," Moonlight says agreeably to Swivel. "Though, star charts are interesting, I wasn't the navigator or pilot."

It is then that she finally notices Slugfest as he speaks up. Peering into the corner, she grins at the little guy. "I guess reading just suddenly got really popular," she says lightly. "Whatcha working on?" As if he was doing something more important than coloring.

Tilting her head to the side, she regards Ultra Magnus for several moments, expression thoughtful. "Hopefully she wasn't disrupting you /too/ much," she finally says, tone light.

        Amusement playing across Swivel's charicaturesque features, she brings two baled up hands up to her mouth. "So cuuuuuuuute!" 
        Swivel's revel in the cuteness of a tiny stegobot with colouring books is interrupted by talking. She had amost forgotten she was iin the middle of a conversation, and whips her head towards Moonlight as she makes some answers, "I'm not so good with star--" and then whips her head around to look at Ultra Magnus as he mentions music.                  "Eeeeeeh?" Swivel tilts her head in confusion. "Whose been playing music? I didn't hear anything... and I'm good at hearing stuff."

"Am coloring pictures!" Slugfest says, then noses down to pick his crayon back up. It's a purple crayon. He resumes coloring.

"You were singing," Ultra Magnus points out. He does not sound especially annoyed; he is stating facts, like 'this is a spaceship' or 'that is a stegosaurus'. He shifts his weight between the heavy clank of his feet, massive hands momentarily folded loosely behind him as he lowers his head, brow weighted over his bland look.

He looks for a moment like he might be about to add something else, but there's a subtle easing to his brow with the next huff of air that escapes him, not quite all the way to a sigh. At least Slugfest isn't making a mess out of something sensitive (this time). "I'm not offended by music," he says, "but there's a time and a place."

"Fair enough," Moonlight says to Ultra Magnus. "There aren't many things that are appropriate for ALL times and places," she adds aimiably "But I'm just guessing that Swivel, here, is just happy to be out of the pod and back with her own kind, so some allowances could be made for her being" She smiles.

Then she wanders over to take a look at what the tiny-stego is coloring with that purple crayon. "Purple's a good color," she says kindly.

Looking back over her shoulder, she asks Swivel, "What kind of things are you good at hearing?"

"Yus!" Slugfest says, dropping the crayon again as he speaks, then picks it up again in his mouth. The picture he's coloring is a T-rex.

Primus knows why he's coloring it purple.

        "Wait wait wait," Swivel says, holding her hands out, palms on full display. "If I was singing peeps'd be throwing things at me!" Swivel insists, adding just a touch of self deprecating humour. "They used to ask... if I was a robot, why couldn't I sing perfectly? Just program musical algorithms into my vocoder... but... I singing ain't my function, so if I were to sing good I'd be stirring troub-- oh wait... functionism is sort of on the out, isn't it?" It seems that the femme is going to have a lot to get used to. And perhaps people will have a lot of getting used to her. But then, if anyone can get used to Swerve, tolerating her should be a piece of insincere cake. 
        Swivel takes a moment, stepping back physically, to review the conversation thus far in her mind, and then tilts her head to the side. She looks at Moonlight in particular. "I hear... stuff. Higher and lower frequencies. Well... mostly higher. Not so good with the low. I can see in different wavelengths too!" There is a barely audible click-slide-click noise as her optics go out for a moment only to blink on agin. They appeart dimmer but the hue has altered slightly, although it might be hard to see the difference. She holds her hand up close to her optics so that their dim glow tints the colour of her hand... and lumineces a circular spot on the back of her hand (it looks mostly disintegrated and could use a new layer of... whatever it was) that was not visible before. "Neat, eh?"

"While I don't believe musical accompaniment is appropriate in the library, ranged weaponry would /also/ not be appropriate in the library," Ultra Magnus says firmly. Confronted with the new and unusual, he does as usual and cloaks himself in literalism, apparently. "No one should attack you for any reason." Observing this exchange with mild consternation, the big mech settles his weight subtly back on the wide plant of his bootheels. Aside to Moonlight, he tilts his head slightly, and says: "I'm not really familiar with the concept of 'chipper', but I was hardly advocating punishment. Just advising."

Slugfest momentarily looks around. "Where are singing?"

Moonlight shakes her head slightly, not because she's disagreeing with Ultra Magnus, but because she simply isn't sure how to respond to the big mech. "Are you so good at your job because you're so literal, or did you become so literal because you've been doing your job so long?" she asks.

Nodding to Swivel she says, "I don't know much about functionism, but I'm pretty sure that most people here aren't doing what they're doing because they were built for it," she muses. "I also get the feeling that most people around here won't care much if you sing now and then, but I could be mistaken; I haven't been here much longer than you have."

She looks over towards Slugfest. "Well, technically she was humming, not singing."

Slugfest ohs quietly, then goes back to coloring.

        "Oh.... was I humming? Is THAT why music was brought up?" Swivel cocks her head to one side in a jerky, quizzical motion. Wait. It seems as though she isn't even managing to follow the conversation, and it isn't a complicated one at that. "I guess I picked up humming with all the time spent alone..." Swivel explains, reaching across her chest and grabbing her right upper arm with her left hand. "And... no one... no one was shooting at me... just throwing things. You know. Whatever was handy and not too valuable. Organics usually threw things squishier than themselves. Or..." she glances at Slugfest, "...writing utensils. Oh, um, clothing... like shoes? Stuff put on their feet, because their feet are so softand vulnerable... and-and-and... empty containers. So... not really weapons. I've been hit with the odd book..." She keeps staring at Slugfest as she talks. "...where did you get that?" she finally sks.

Ultra Magnus looks at Moonlight with an expression gone inscrutably blank. "I have been known to occasionally indulge in an analogy," he says, with a note of almost humor in his low voice, like a breath of dryness. "From time to time."

"Yes, you were humming," he goes on to confirm for Swivel with a deepening frown etching across his brow. "Have you spent a lot of time having objects hurled at you by organics?"

Slugfest looks up, crayon in mouf. "Where gotted what?" he asks, crayon dropping again. "Book come from shelf here." He points to a low shelf, stego-sized, filled with coloring books of all kinds. A caddy for crayons sits on top of the shelf.

Moonlight gives Magnus a grin. "Alright, my mistake," she says. "Still, I would imagine, for your job, that it would be very important to be exact, leaving little room for misunderstanding, yes?"

She turns to Swivel. "You'd really think that, all things considered, they'd be more interested in protecting those squishy feet of theirs than in throwing shoes at you," she says. "In general, they're not bad sorts," she goes on to say. "Though it seems a lot of /us/ don't care for them much." She shrugs.

She chuckles softly at Slugfest. "Do you spend a lot of time coloring?" she inquires. She's not entirely sure how intelligent the little guy is, and though he's a lot smaller than her, she doesn't really want to offend him.

"Yus! Is fun!" Slugfest says, thagomizer wagging.

        "Oh.... Down there... I'm just kinda surprised there'd be... colouring books and colouring tools on board... Maybe I'll join ya some time." Swivel says affably, her smile returning. "Um.... I'm Swivel by the way. I'm new here." Just in case the Stego didn't gather all of that already. After all, great works of art can demand all of one's attention. 
        Turning back to Ultra Magnus, Swivel looks up at him. "Um.... yeah. Organics. It's not that I don't like organics - I'm fien with them! It's not just organics, either. On Cybertron before I left, people threw things at me too... empty canisters, broken pipes, used magazines, crumpled sheet metal, broken datapads... not so broken datapads that usually broke after being thrown... lots of datapads." Swivel shrugs. "Sometimes peeps din like the message I brought them... coz that's what I used to do. Deliver messages. And other stuff. Usually didn't know what sort of stuff, though... don't ask, don't tell, everyone's happy....

"Precision and exactness are important to doing any job well," Ultra Magnus opines, though really, who would expect him to hold any other opinion. "So yes, I believe that would be a correct assessment."

Frown weighting his expression all the heavier, Magnus ponders Swivel for a long moment before saying anything else; at length what he says is just, "I expect to hear about it if you find crew of the Lost Light pelting you with anything of the kind."

Slugfest yays and wags his thagomizer more rapidly as Swivel introduces herself. "Yay, new poeple!" he says, lifting a feets to do the whole 'shake paw' routine. "Yus, color wif sometime."

"Well, as a messenger, it's a good thing they didn't shoot you," Moonlight says with a faint smile. There's a saying about that, isn't there? "Either way, you're here now, so I'm guessing people didn't take it out on you /too/ heavy back then."

She looks back up at Magnus. "Some jobs are less exact, and more intuitive. As a trader, I have to get a feel for when to haggle and when to stop. There aren't exact rules for this. But law is law; it's not really something I want to mess with."

Then she looks down at the stego. Between BIG Ultra Magnus, tiny Slugfest, and herself and Swivel somewhere in the middle, Moonlight's optics are getting a work out going up, down, and all around. "I don't think I've ever sat down and colored with crayons before, even after all the time I spent with squishies."

"Oh, uh, wouldn't that be tattling? I mean, I respect law... so far as... as... as it's doing what it is supposed to be doing..." Swivel says, suddenly becoming nervous again. Even as she speaks, she seems to shrink away from Ultra Magnus, further defining the difference in their sizes. She begins wringing her hands uneasily. "I mean, rules are there to protect people, yanno? I like rules... they make me feel safe... but sometimes they aren't good ones and kinda defeat the purpose, yanno?" Now she is backing away, barely avoiding bumping into Moonlight. "I-I mean... I um... I'm going to have to... uh... where might I find all the rules aboard? I wouldn't want to accidentally break any..."

Ultra Magnus doesn't smile -- it's just too far beyond the line, you understand -- but he does /brighten/. The edge of frown seems to recede from his expression, leaving him slightly more animated. It's probably not the most reassuring response to this question. "I can certainly provide you with those," he says. "I think you'll find that the Autobot Code is full of precisely the right kind of rules. I know that I do. In fact, I have other duties that I'll shortly be attending to, but I'll be sure and send the complete code to your habsuite so you can review it at length."

He turns a long look over Slugfest and his leisure activities, and he kind of sighs, but through some masterful restraint, does not make any particular /comment/ about coloring. Instead, he says, "In any event, welcome aboard, and the best of luck to you in catching up."

"Uh, okay, that'd be... that'd be great... then I can review 'em at my leisure..." Swivel says, but doesn't seem very much more reassured. After all, she'd lived a life where breaking rules had dire consequences, and the fear of breaking rules, even thousands, well, millions of years later still haunts the femme. "Yeah, great, yeah," she mumbles, continuing a positive response, although she looks as though she is considering leaving herself. "Um... I saw some blank datapads... I was... I was wondering if I could take some? I think I'd like to keep a personal log..." She doesn't seem to address this question to anyone in particular.

"Swivel, there's a difference between tattling and letting someone know that something wrong is happening. Though, I guess, it can sometimes be hard to define that difference." Moonlight shrugs her shoulders. "But that's just my opinion. Could be they're just the same thing, but one word just sounds worse." As for blank datapads, well, she hasn't gotten around to asking about those yet herself, so she just shrugs in answer.

Slugfest drops his purple crayon, picks up the coloring book in his mouf, and starts prancing around with it proudly.

        There is a pause as Swivel glances about herself uneasily. "well... guess I'll wait 'til I kin ask someone else... who would know..." Swive says. She doesn't seem interested in discussing the difference between reporting a violating and tattle-taling. She just looks apprehensive... That is until Slugfest celebrates the completion of his picture. She glances over and lets out a small laugh and claps. "Nice..." But the mirth doesn't last long. "I... I think I am going to find my way back to the quarters I been assigned..."

Moonlight kneels down so she's closer to Slugfest's level. "So, tell me about yourself," she says, inviting the little one to converse if he so wishes. Unlike some of the people on the ship, she doesn't have any side-based prejudices.

"Well, I hope you have a good bunk mate," she says to Swivel. "Seems as though most of us pair up." A brief flicker of annoyance on her face, but it quickly subsides. "Anyhow, take care."

Slugfest ponders a bit at Moonlight's question. "Am cassette, can saw down trees, and can carry messages!" he replies at length.

"I don't imagine there would be a lot of trees out here in space. Do you get to go down to the planets very often then?" Moonlight asks Slugfest. "Oh, by the way, my name is Moonlight," she adds, holding out a hand out of habit, even if the stegosaurus doesn't technically have any hands to shake with.

"Yay Moonlight! Am Slugfest!" the little tiny stego replies, as he tries 'shaking paw' with Moonlight. "Yus go down lots! Sometimes fight cuz peoples want us be spare parts!"

Moonlight chuckles softly. "Well, no one wants to be spare parts," she says. "At least, I know I don't. So, you have to fight sometimes? That doesn't surprise me actually; we don't have the best reputation in the galaxy after all. A lot of people out there don't like our kind."

"Yus, no want be chopped up in lil pieces and sold," Slugfest says. "No understands why some people no likes."

"Well, it was nice to meet you Slugfest," Moonlight says, touching the brim of her hat as though to tip it. "But I should get back to my room. I have some thinking to do."

"Okay!" Slugfest says, and he scampers back to the corner, deposits the coloring book on the floor, then heads for the entrance to the Library, "Prolly need recharge too!"

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