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2016-06-26 Collaboration

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Collaboration
Date 2016/06/26
Location Lost Light - Command: Rodimus's Office
Participants Rodimus, Ultra Magnus
Summary Minimus and Rodimus work together and write Drift a note.

Given that Rodimus is larger than Minimus Ambus, it's unfair that he should be stretched out over him, but that's life. It's unfair. Rodimus dozes, lightly recharging -- just topping off before a shift where they are scheduled to finally break orbit. He wants to be at his peak in case of disasters. This has nothing to do with his insistence that Minimus read to him from Minimus's favorite book, which is probably the kind of thing that caused Rodimus to more or less immediately pass out. Nothing at all! He wants to be at his PEAK in case of DISASTER. Anyway, he's not really 'on' him, not entirely, he just has one arm draped across his middle and his face smushed against Minimus's shoulder.

Minimus's favorite book is, of course, a set of footnotes and commentary on the Autobot Code.

No, really, it's no wonder that Rodimus falls asleep.

He keeps reading aloud even as Rodimus first dozes off, in his low, mellow tones, expounding on the placement of this comma or on the initial intent of the passage. He relishes a particular citation is h. ref. Ultra Magnus, because it represents his own work.

Finally, when it's clear that Rodimus is no longer an actual participant in this activity, he falls into reading silently for awhile -- apparently warm and content to sit and read in the wrap of Rodimus's arm -- and then, eventually, thoughtfully, lightly taps the datapad against the crown of Rodimus's head. Tap tap.

Rodimus buries his face against Minimus's side and shakes his head, denying those first taps. The glow of his eyes brightening escapes, limning the side of his face. A moment later, he lifts his head to rest his chin on Minimus's chest and stare at him, frowning. "Why are you hitting me?" He is frowning Very Seriously.

Minimus sets his datapad aside. He strokes his fingertips over the curve of Rodimus's helm, shifting beneath and against him so that he can prop himself on his elbow and press the warmth of a kiss to his brow. To make up for his egregious violence, no doubt. "I thought you might absorb the information better that way."

Rodimus wriggles up, lifting his head to nose past Minimus's chin and steal that kiss a little more directly before flattening again. "No. You knocked it right out of me. I don't remember any of it."

"I see," rumbles Minimus from the very depths of his frame. His next noise is a little bit more like a snort, but the next stroke of his fingers is still much more like a petting of Rodimus's head than like anything that impends further violence. "I didn't realize you invited me up here because you needed a sleep aid."

Eyes dimming, Rodimus grins. "No. I invited you up here because I like you up here. I miss you being up here. Being up here with Soundwave's not the same. How's that going, by the way? What's he like?" He makes a face, then says, "I guess I know what he's like, but still -- different roles, right? What's he like for you?"

"He's a perfectly reasonable commanding officer," Minimus says in a neutral tone. He contemplates for a moment like he's considering just how much to wind up Rodimus, but apparently decides against the spirit of mischief under the circumstances. "Professional," he says. His fingers and thumb slide down the back of Rodimus's neck, exerting a certain brace of pressure as he digs towards the point where his neck meets the shoulders of his armor. "He did present me with a gift when I accepted the post."

Rodimus's spoiler dips with the slackening of his shoulders as cables lose their tension. He mumbles a nothing response against Minimus's shoulder, then shifts, hitching a little more to the side and up in an unsubtle direct of Minimus's hand toward the base of his spoiler. Yes, pets. Pets here. "I heard that long pause," he says, which is clearly impossible. "What gift?"

"The personal part of the gift was a collection of music." Minimus lets his hand stroke over the base of Rodimus's spoiler, turning to press his knuckles hard against his back as he scrapes over the surface. "Hmmm," he sighs a little. "I have no complaints to make, really. It is very strange when you think about it, of course, but much about this crew is like that. If you had told me a year ago that you and I would be in this position--"

Spinal strut bowing as he arches into the touch, Rodimus grins. "Music. Well, he cheats, I guess. Of course he knows what you like. That's not fair. I could get you music. It'd probably be music you hate, though. And -- well, Drift already did that. I gave you charts once." He gave Minimus a gift. Once. He is therefor done with all gift-giving forever. "That counts, right? If you told me I'd be in the library doing research and making charts willingly, probably about as crazy. Guess all the research only went so far, though." He lifts his chin, smile fading into a more serious, but soft regard, and studies Minimus. "How's the whole -- everything?"

Minimus keeps stroking down Rodimus's back and then back up, his hand spreading fingers and bracing against the base of his spoiler. It's going to be harder for him to pet Rodimus's spoiler if he puts on the sharp spiky one. He says, "You don't need to give me presents. I never really know what to do with them anyway. Although-- there isn't really music I hate, Rodimus." He lets a sigh cycle through him, his head tipping back someplace as he contemplates the question. "When you say everything, do you mean ... what do you mean?"

Shit, that's a really good point. Pets vs. looking cool: a constant battle. "I bet I can find something." Rodimus looks as though he has taken that as a challenge. FIND MUSIC THAT MINIMUS HATES. "You know, everything. You don't have your own space, you dropped in rank, you're working under others -- you're going around without the armor. All of it. Everything."

"Everything." Minimus looks meditative. His fingers still against Rodimus's back, hard points of pressure as he says: "I don't know. It's strange. I'm not used to being so ... self-conscious. It's hard to be Minimus Ambus. I know I chose it myself, but--" He shakes his head. "I don't know, Rodimus. Losing my own space was difficult. Thus far Moonracer has respected the line of tape on the floor and ... most of the crew don't have this particular option--" He gestures with his free hand, indicating Rodimus's room and his current state of avoiding his roommate by lounging in his arms.

Rodimus makes a small little, "Mm-hmm?" that hums through his chest where his frame is pressed to Minimus's side. He otherwise says nothing, largely waiting to see if there is more to that half-finished sentence.

Minimus Ambus makes a vaguely disgruntled noise without actually letting it resolve into words. "I don't know," he says. "Parts of it ... parts of this feel very freeing. I spent so long hiding and pretending. It's a relief to not have to anymore, about anything." He shifts, and then turns to tuck his head in, bumping his nose gently against Rodimus's cheek as he sighs.

Reaching to frame Minimus's face -- palm on his cheek, fingers fanning along the side of his helm, thumb brushing under his lips -- Rodimus smiles. "It's probably one of the boldest things I've seen you do, and I watched you face down Overlord and Tyrest. It might not as obvious to everyone, but I know it's gotta be."

"It is terrifying." Minimus tilts his head into the warmth of Rodimus's touch, his gaze flickering down to Rodimus's mouth as he smiles and then back up to the brightness of his gaze. He says, "I don't feel bold. I feel nervous and jumpy and like I'm about to snap most of the time. Luckily the work itself isn't very challenging." It's pretty easy going from basically doing all the administrative work of the entire ship he could get his hands on to managing a few spreadsheets and taking notes for Soundwave. "And I have compensations," he adds in a much quieter voice, with the barest shadow of a smile lifting his mouth at the corners.

"A few," Rodimus agrees, lifting his head to kiss the edge of that smile. His own smile grows. "A couple, for sure." His tone is leading. He leaves a silence for Minimus to fill.

Minimus Ambus draws two fingertips in a long glide down Rodimus's cheek. He hesitates for a moment's silence, watching Rodimus's smile. "I worry a little about that," he says. "You and Drift."

Smile faltering, Rodimus presses into the touch of Minimus's hand. "What do you mean?"

"I worry about being unfair." Minimus leans his head forward to bump their foreheads together, which is also one of Drift's favorite moves. "Like when you asked to see Drift's notes. I've never written him one."

"Oh." Then Rodimus lights up and throws himself from the berth in a sudden scramble. "One sec!" he calls back, dodging into his office.

"What--" Minimus Ambus startles visibly, flinching as Rodimus charges off into the office. He sits up, his feet hitting the floor, and then sits there in a moment's still uncertainty. "What?"

Rodimus come back with a datapad and throws himself back down next to Minimus, this time on his back. "Okay, we're gonna write Drift a note, the two of us, right now." He holds the datapad above his pace and thumbs in the start to a message:

drift--

Rodimus backspaces.

dear drift--

Rodimus deletes both words and starts without an address:

i think ur pretty cool--

Minimus Ambus gives Rodimus a look of blanched horror.

"You're right." Rodimus deletes it all and starts again:

mags and i think ur awesome-- he types out letter by tortured letter.

"Rodimus, give me that." Minimus reaches to try and confiscate the datapad from him before he can commit further acts of atrocious grammar. "Your typing is just appalling! How can you possibly be romantic without any capital letters?"

"I'm romantic without capital letters all the time!" Rodimus insists, even as he relinquishes the datapad to Ultra Magnus. "What's wrong with my typing?"

Minimus holds up the datapad and points to Rodimus's offending "ur" as though this pair of letters is going to answer that all by itself. "What even is that?" he demands.

"You're," Rodimus says as though it is perfectly obvious. He frowns at Minimus is concern.

"Which one? The contracted 'you are' or the possessive singular?" Minimus eyes his concerned frown with a shade of something incredulous in his expression. He lowers the datapad to his lap. "What is it that you want to say to Drift?"

"What?" Rodimus stares at Minimus. "Are those -- real words? I wanna tell him we think he's cool!"

"What does 'cool' mean?" Minimus asks Rodimus very gravely.

"I like him?" Rodimus looks confused.

Minimus looks a little thwarted for a moment. Then he says, "I could go get my dictionaries. I have a thesaurus and a rhyming dictionary and--" before he sort of remembers who he's talking to and stops and frowns.

Clearly frustrated, Rodimus tosses the datapad onto Minimus's chest and then folds his arms over his own. "Okay, you start it."

Minimus sits quietly for a long moment, fingers poised over the datapad. The moment extends.

"Well?" Rodimus prods.

"I don't usually do this with an audience," Minimus says a little testily. He hesitates for a moment, and then looks up at Rodimus. "Maybe I need inspiration."

"You want me to be inspirational?" asks Rodimus with a truly ridiculous grin.

<FS3> Rodimus rolls Inspire: Good Success. (2 6 5 8 3 6 6 7 5 3 3 8 5 3)

"Yes," Minimus tells him. He shifts, and demonstrates how he'd like that to happen by reaching for Rodimus's face so that he can haul him in for a kiss.

<FS3> Ultra_Magnus rolls Poetry: Good Success. (8 7 7 3)

That's about what Rodimus was figuring. Meeting Minimus with the reach of his arms, he wraps him in a warm embrace to pull close. The datapad slides off forgotten someplace between them as he draws his hand down Minimus's spine to the small of his back, pulling his hips tight against his own. The air warms with the purr of his systems, fans venting warm air only to draw back the air from Minimus's frame and heat that, too. He plies Minimus with the very best of his kisses, touch tender and mouth hungry, and then pulls back to draw a breath of cooler air and grin. Looking a little dazed himself, he asks, "How's that?"

Minimus loses a soft noise to the kiss, a low murmuring sound of an inchoate word that does not quite resolve into one one way or the other. Pressing close against Rodimus and soaking heat from him, Minimus's only reluctance is to let him pull back when his lips slide away. He leaves his hand at the back of Rodimus's head, the other fallen to his side like a few hard pinpoints of heat. "All I could ask for," he says. He pulls his hand from the back of Rodimus's helm, then, to trace beneath the curve of his grinning mouth. "Of course, am I more inspired to write, or to kiss you again?"

"One more--" And Rodimus makes it a quick one, just a small sip of a kiss rather than a long draw, and then settles back. "--and then write. More kisses every ten words. I've already come up with like twenty words even if they weren't good enough so now it's your turn."

"Ah, the reward system. It's an efficient work tool. I commend you for thinking of it." Minimus reaches for the datapad, cracks his knuckles, and begins.

Drift,

Rodimus says that you are cool: running water, a quenching soothe to his bright heat.

Minimus says that you are warm: sun soaked from stone, a glowing warmth to his cold isolation.

Between us, maybe there is balance.

Rodimus says he likes you. Minimus says he likes you, too.

Rodimus wiggles until he can see what Minimus is writing. He starts to argue a time or two but mostly keeps his mouth shut. By the end, he's just grinning. "That's so many words," is the first thing he says.

"Fifty words, in fact," Minimus tells him seriously. "Fifty-one, if you count 'Drift'." He proffers him the datapad for his completed proof. "I believe I have some kisses to collect."

Dropping the datapad off the berth without bothering to count, Rodimus turns to take Minimus in his arms. "I think you do." Let no one says he is not a mech of his word. (Actually, lots of people say that. 'I promise there is definitely no Overlord on my ship!) But in this case, anyway -- he's got a promise to fulfill.

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