2015-04-26 Full of Character
From Transformers: Lost and Found
|Full of Character|
|Location||Lost Light: Recreation -- Swerve's|
|Participants||Grimlock, Riptide, Rodimus|
|Summary||This log is full of characters and character witnessing.|
Often referred to as the heart of the ship (by Swerve), the bar is rarely empty, rarely quiet. Central to the whole is the bar itself: just tall enough for a minibot to serve over the edge and lined with stools capable of accommodating bots of any height. Large, clear vessels stand behind the bar, containing the brews of the day. Behind the bar, an engex distillery assures there's always something new.
Round tables are scattered across the floor. Seats fold up from the floor beneath. Large boots along the sides of the room have room for a half-dozen or more, if they don't mind getting cozy, while monitors here and there find occasional use showing old vids.
So. The Lost Light stopped above a Galactic Council outpost for a perfectly routine little check, and ended up getting semi-arrested and coming back with a brain-damaged Grimlock and a mystery pod. The mystery pod turned out not so mysterious: it held another Cybertronian, someone else who has managed to miss most of the war. And while Grimlock ended up very definitely brain-damaged, the Lost Light has /Ratchet/. So that's been fixed.
But now there are complicated legal things resutling from being basically arrested and literally blowing your way out of it while running off with a fugitive Dinobot or something -- gossip isn't clear on that point. That gossip is soon followed by Ultra Magnus asking for character witnesses to speak to Grimlock's defense just muddies the water.
So Rodimus is here to clarify things. Impartially. "Okay! Who in here fought next to Grimlock and can say that he's totally an okay guy?" he says on slamming his way through the doors and into Swerve's.
Riptide is pretty much doing what he does best today, which is be lazy and drink at Swerve's. Feet on the table and leaning back in his chair, the mech is well into tipping back a glass of engex when Rodimus storms through the door. "Agh!" Optics wide, the Aquabot jumps and sputters on his drink as he goes tipping backwards and hits the ground hard.
This is where Riptide remains a moment, stunned, before reality catches up and he grumbles, clambering to his feet. "Fraggit, I wanted to finish that.." He frowns and tries to slick away the engex all over him now while giving Rodimus a partial stink-eye. "What about Grimlock? Barely know the guy."
Ah hah. A volunteer. Riptide's reaction singles him out as Rodimus's first target. He strides across the bar like he owns the place (and he totally does, thanks Drift!) to stand with hands on his hips as he views Riptide from above. As he gets to his feet, the angle of his gaze changes, but his pose and the wide smile remain fixed.
"Perfect! Come with me." Rodimus leads Riptide to the bar with the gesture of his arm and slaps the bar's surface. "Swerve! Another drink for this fine, upstanding citizen."
Swerve mutters something half-hearted about how Rodimus really needs to pay up his tab, but Rodimus isn't listening.
"Okay, Rrr--iptide," says Rodimus after just a slight hesitation to actually place the face on the roster. "Grimlock. You ever known him to work with Decepticons?"
Oh Primus, Rodimus has his sights on him.. This can't end well for Riptide. Or at least he thinks that while being pretty much ordered to follow the captain to the bar. "Uhm.. Thanks.." He looks skeptically at the offered drink, but doesn't make any complaints and takes it anyway, sipping gingerly as he listens to Rodimus.
"I uh.. don't think so?" Riptide's face scrunches up a little in thought. "I mean, I dunno the mech that well. Just that he's a bit.. off in the head, y'know?"
"Never mind about that," Rodimus says in hasty redirect. "But he's not the kind of guy you'd expect to see helping Decepticons escape or anything, right?" He sets something down on the bar. It appears to be a recorder. SURPRISE. This conversation is being recorded. Ultra Magnus will be so happy to see how responsible Rodimus is being. "In fact, wouldn't you say he's more likely to help capture Decepticons?" Does this count as leading the witness?
Riptide nearly chokes on his drink again when he spots the recorder being placed on the counter, quickly setting his glass down and holding his hands up in defense. "Hey, whoa, hold on there Captain." He says a bit hurriedly, not liking this. "You're not trying to rope me into this trial thing are you? I honestly have /no/ idea about the mech. I mean uh.. I guess you could sic 'em on Cons, he seems like he can take directions like that. But other than that, I've got no clue."
Rodimus frowns! "Look," he says, and looks back over his shoulder to make sure no one big, blue, and lawful has materialized at the door. He leans in and lowers his voice: "Look, I'm not exactly /roping you in/, am I? I'm just asking questions. Ultra Magnus is on the defense, and if nothing else, he'll do his best, and /Tailgate/ is prosecutor -- probably, anyway -- so that's basically in the bag. But I don't want Grimlock to get locked up or thrown out or anything because a bunch of /stupid-hatted fleshlings/ can't tell Autobots and Decepticons apart because they are anti-mech racists." Says the guy who just called organics fleshlings. "So work with me, huh? Grimlock's one of /us/."
Riptide's brow raises as Rodimus leans in, his lowered voice forcing him to lean in a little bit as well. Yeesh.. if the captain is interviewing Riptide for this, of all mechs, then he must be pretty desperate. "Hn.. Fine." The mech says lowly in response. "But I don't have to do my rounds today. Deal?" Bargaining with the captain? Damn right!
After that the Aquabot is all smiles, flashing those shark teeth and leaning all cool-like into the counter. "But you know, now that I think about it, Grimlock seemed like a pretty okay mech when I met him. Not much in the smarts department, but I can tell you he doesn't seem all that big on Cons. Bet he'd be great at helping take any down."
Rodimus looks like he might protest, but when Riptide immediately launches into such a recording-ready line of answers, the nascent frown vanishes. His expression brightens in a wide grin. He mouths 'deal' without breaking the flow of Riptide's response. The recorder greedily soaks up every word.
"And he'd definitely not help any Decepticons out, right?" Rodimus lowers his voice in a half-whisper, but the recorder picks him up just fine. It's a quality recorder. Sorry, Rodimus.
Riptide doesn't know the recorder can still hear Rodimus, so he continues to plow on ahead through what will likely earn him a summons to the court. "I dunno why folks keep saying he'd help out Decepticons anyway. He's one of us, and an Autobot, so I don't think he'd ever do something like that." Riptide bobs his head in a nod, allowing his mouth to chatter on while his mind blissfully dreams about his free day off.
It's almost as if he can hear his name being gossiped about from down the hall -- and several decks away. Grimlock tromps in not as a matter of purpose, but more a natural byproduct of his overall size and -- Grimlock-ness. He peers around the bar, clearly in an exploratory mode and having located it for the first time. He peers at Rodimus and Riptide and their little chat. He peers some more.
"Good, and he--." But any further coaching that Rodimus might provide is cut off when the subject of their little gossip sesh shows. He hastily thumbs off the recorder and stashes it. Behind the bar, Swerve makes a quiet noise of complaint as he starts imagining drunk dino property damage. "Hey! Grimlock! Come be friendly with people so that they'll all give Ultra Magnus character statements or whatever."
"Yeah, that Grimlock. I'd definitely share a drink with that--" Riptide just keeps going, eager to get that time off, but the second he spots Grimlock stomping through the door he stops dead in his verbal tracks and wheezes a little, his smile falling. Oh scrap...
"Uhh... Heyyyyy Grimlock." Riptide very quickly takes up his drink and sips at it, trying to keep himself from saying anything stupid aroud the big bot. But this is Riptide, so stupidity is inevitable.
"What." It's still audible from across the room, but Grimlock's expression is one of great suspicion as he continues his peering. After a few moments' consideration, he directs himself over towards Rodimus and Riptide. "What are you doing."
"Riptide here was just saying he would definitely share a drink with you," says Rodimus with a malicious sort of glee. He thinks this is funny. He OBVIOUSLY thinks this is funny. "I was talking to him about you. Getting some character witness for Ultra Magnus. That whole -- defense thing. You know. Remembered anything helpful lately?"
Riptide's yellow optics go wide and he slooooowly turns his head to look at Rodimus, the horror on his face saying nothing but 'why did you /say/ that??'. You are a horrible person Rodimus. So very, very horrible.
Trying his best to compose himself, Riptide flashes sharp jaws in a half-hearted smile and gingerly pats the barstool near him and Rodimus. "Y-Yeah, c'mon then, big guy. Come have a drink with us. Whaddya like? Engex? Plain energon..?" Forced socialization is hard.
Grimlock drops down in the seat next to Riptide with a heavy thump. He's a little big for it. "Every time you ask, I forget more," he grumbles at Rodimus before focusing his attention on Riptide. "I don't know who you are."
"You know I'm asking for /your sake/, right?" Rodimus gives Grimlock a deeply cross frown. In aside to Riptide, he says, "Seriously, it's like he wants me to just throw him back to the council, and don't think I'm not tempted. A little gratitude wouldn't be out of place, is all I'm saying."
Riptide leans aside a little when Grimlock sits between them, making space for his bulk. "It's uh.. It's Riptide. Nice to.. meet you." He clears his vocals a little, eyeing Swerve to get Grimlock a drink before looking over to Rodimus, his mouth twisting a little in response. "Don't think he means it, Cap. Not like he chose to have that... well.. y'know.. When you can't remember things." Riptide tries to play off his own lack of smarts, but it's now going as well as he thought as he taps his head to indicate.
"You being an aft about it ain't making me feel any more grateful," Grimlock snarks back at Rodimus. What a butt. He considers Riptide in all of his leaning, vocal-clearing, and mouth-twisting. He smirks. "You nervous?"
Just three geniuses, sitting at a bar. That's what's going on here. Surely the madness of genius is the only way to excuse Rodimus muttering, "I think I liked you better before," as he leans over the bar to grab a straw. Because it is not a curly straw, civil war probably won't result. "There are times in my life that I'd have found amnesia /pretty convenient/, maybe, but a little /less convenience/ might help us get this stupid law thing over with."
Riptide stares blankly up at Grimlock, tempted to just nope out of the room, but.. damnit, he needs to show a /little/ spine! Puffing up, the mech puts on a tough face. "N-No, I'm not nervous at all! What gave you that idea?" He's nothing but cool, can't you see? So cool, in fact, that he takes up his the rest of his drink and tosses it back in one go like the awesome guy he is. Only.. he drinks too fast and some ends up down the wrong intake, making him almost double over coughing.
"Hrgk.. Just.. I'm sure it'll come back to him, Rodimus.. Guh." Riptide manages to hack out, righting himself and wheezing after having almost fallen out of his seat.
Grimlock snorts out a laugh at Riptide's response and subsequent choke-coughing. "Bot doesn't even know how to drink his energon right!" He looks back at Rodimus, his grin wide in the face of the Captain's grumbling.
"You need like -- a sippy cup or something?" Rodimus asks Riptide with sincere concern. "You are really struggling with drinks today." He's just helping. Because he's a helper.
"Not coming back fast enough." Rodimus considers Grimlock and his grin sidelong. With a grumble, he says, "You're probably faking it because you think it's funny."
Everyone seems grumbly lately, though Riptide has a genuine reason. Glaring at the two of them, he wipes the energon from the corner of his mouth with the back of his hand and huffs at thier mocking. "Tch, I'm gonna go hit the oil baths." Primus knows he needs it after having engex spilled all over himself THANKS TO RODIMUS.
Slapping down some credits for his previous drink, Riptide gives a pointed look to the Captain, hoping he remembers their deal, and offers Grimlock a slight, halfhazard nod before skulking off quick.
"I thought he was getting me a drink." Grimlock watches Riptide go with a hint of annoyance at his /lack of drink/ when Swerve actually finishes making it and slides it over. So impatient, Grimlock. "Oh. He did." Looking back at Rodimus and blithely ignoring talk about his inconvenient memories, he says, "He's paying for this, right?"
Rodimus returns Riptide's look with a slow nod. He would never make a deal and fail to keep it! (As long as he remembers it. Probably.) Anyway, he remembers AND keeps this one, pulling out a datapad to make the adjustments. This requires he thumb past several very much not work-related items on the screen before he can make the adjustment. "Yeah, whatever, drink up," he says with a lack of care that makes Swerve a little dismayed. "So other than your suspiciously inconvenient failure of memory, everything settling okay?"
"Hey, I told you about the nobody Cons that pulled me off of that nobody planet," Grimlock argues, bristling all defensively. "Don't know why I'm even /responsible/ for stuff that happened when my brain was flipped off."
"Mumble mumble law things." Rodimus actually says 'mumble mumble, too, which ought to tell you what kind of respect he has for the law things. "I'd just dismiss it, but Ultra Magnus might actually make good on his threats to pack up and head home, and there goes all our legitimacy when we actually run into those guys again." He frowns faintly, as though some distant point about the necessity of /preserving/ that legitimacy, of /honoring/ it, of /behaving/ might be tickling about the edges of his brain ... but then he takes a drink and forgets it. "Look, you want us to drop you off so you can head back when this is over, or what? Thought that far?"
"I don't even know where here is," Grimlock points out. "I don't know what this crew is or what you're doing, but someone tell's me the war's over, and then someone else tells me there's /Cons/ on board, and what the scrap are you doing with /Cons/ on your ship?"!"
Rodimus throws his hands wide. "It's the Lost Light! We're going to go find the Knights of Cybertron and bring a golden age back to Cybertron. It might not be dead anymore, but things are a /mess/. Bumblebee wants to just forget everything and let it all fall to ruin again. Soundwave's agreed to help, as long as we look for Megatron on the way, which -- sure, I'll look for Megatron, but I told him that doesn't mean that the Cons can just run off with him again and Soundwave did that whole weirdo blankface monotone thing and agreed. Anyway, he's on the level as much as he can be. He had this ridiculous idea that the Decepticons were supposed to be about equality and got, uh, distracted. On the way to that goal."
"So--" Grimlock pulls his drink close and downs the entirety of it in one gulp. "All this, and no one stopped to tell you how real /stupid/ it is?"
Smile fading, Rodimus looks cross. "No, Grimlock, actually I hear a lot of that. Which is why, if you want me to drop you off when this is done, I will. But I think we've got a chance to do things right, I really do," he says with a dreadful earnestness. "We picked up a Cityspeaker -- and I know, before you ask, I'm going to explain. She talks to Metrotitans. Between her and Soundwave and a map in the Matrix, we've already got more than anyone ever has."
"Well." Grimlock looks down at his empty glass. Where did his drink go. "Sounds like someone needs to be around to save you all when the Cons stab you in the back."
"Aw, you big softie." Rodimus slaps Grimock's shoulder. With a wince, he shakes out his hand. "You see that medic of theirs? He's the worst. I keep expecting to wake up and find my arms replaced by saw blades."
"Well, that's what you get for letting a Con be a medic," Grimlock retorts, as if this should be super obvious and maybe it's /Rodimus/ with cerebral damage here.
"Well, that's what you get for letting a Con be a medic," Rodimus mimics, very mature. "Ugh, thank you, Grimlock. You sound like Ultra Magnus. I don't know." He pushes away from the bar and says, "I'm just waiting for them to put their foot out of line, don't get me wrong. I haven't forgotten what Soundwave did to the neutrals, either. But this is our chance. And maybe the Knights will think better of us for putting the war behind us when we find them, too."
"Hey, you take that back!" Grimlock says immediately, because if there's one bot who would chafe under such a label as much as Rodimus, it's Grimlock. "Guess no one ever told you the Knights are just a bedtime story."
Rodimus smiles like he knows a secret. "We'll see. There was a map, Grimlock. A map inside the Matrix. And Drift -- he spent time with Dei Atlas and the Circle of Light. /He/ thinks it's a map, too. We're going to change things. We really are."
"A map," Grimlock echoes, sounding unimpressed. "Who the hell is Drift?"
"He's -- an Autobot. Third in command." Rodimus visibly hesitates, then says, "He used to be Deadlock." Which is kind of like telling a Decepticon that Grimlock is going to be the new Con morale officer, innit. "He's changed! Like I said, time with the Circle, all deeply meaningful, et cetera. Anyway."
"/Deadlock/?!" If the bar was not attached to the floor, Grimlock might be tempted to flip it over. As it is, he just stands to his feet. "What the hell is /wrong/ with you, Hot Rod?!"
"Drift!" is the first correction on Rodimus's lips, which is, itself, a minor miracle. "You weren't there, Grimlock." He earnests all over things. "At the heart of Cybertron. When all the rest of the Cons were all mind-controlled and turning into this ... monster ... thing. Drift turned his own sword on himself rather than become part of that. He's /changed/." Then he adds a snippish, "And it's /Rodimus/. Lots has changed since you were around. You better get used to it."
"I know I wasn't there!" Grimlock roars at him, looming forward with his massive bulk. "I was on Garrus-9 waiting for someone to notice /Overlord/ making a playground! Maybe I don't really /care/ that your buddy decided to stab himself, because I guess he didn't do a good enough job of it!"
For all that Rodimus stands right up to Grimlock's loom, he makes a funny little wheezing sound at 'Garrus-9'. Or maybe ... Overlord. "Well. Look. Maybe you should talk to Rung or something, okay?" Don't rip off his thumb.
For all that Rodimus stands right up to Grimlock's loom, he makes a funny little wheezing sound at 'Garrus-9'. Or maybe ... Overlord. "Well. Look. Maybe you should talk to Rang or something, okay?" Don't rip off his thumb.
"WHO THE HELL IS RANG?!" He's not really mad at /that/ part, but Grimlock snatches his glass up from the bar to hurl it at the wall anyways. Fu, Wrang. Apparently.
"Okay. That's /enough/." Rodimus's voice snaps with a command he rarely uses, pitched to hit right at that tiny part of Grimlock's brain that might respect it, where he doesn't respect much else. "Out of here, Grimlock. Go for a walk. I'm not having all this work I--" And it's definitely 'I' and not 'Ultra Magnus' at all. "--'m putting into you to waste."
For a moment, Grimlock just stands there seething, and it almost looks like there's a danger of him going on a rampage instead of complying. But he manages to pull his temper forcibly to heel. "Fine," he says. "Maybe I'll go find the brig. Get familiar for when I need it." And he stomps off.