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2016-07-03 It's Not A Date

From Transformers: Lost and Found

2016-07-03 It's Not A Date
Date 2016/07/03
Location Lost Light - Recreation -- Gallery
Participants Inferno, Red Alert
Summary Red Alert and Inferno peruse the gallery. This isn't a date either.

Not all brought on the Lost Light is personnel but also culture, and the desire to share and explore that. Upon entering the ship's modest museum, the faint melodies greet visitors, music collected from locations the Lost Light has visited. The lights are dimmer here than the other locations on the ship, nearly dark. This is to help highlight the rows of holographic walls, displays that show a gallery's worth of interesting sights. Moments of historical significance are rendered for viewing, as well as shared pieces of personally crafted art, or vid-caps of locations the Lost Light has visited. Holographic replicas of cultural artifacts lure attention over here or a particularly interesting visual recreation of perspective call to the senses over here.

At the far side of the room from the entrance is a small stage, complete with a microphoned podium. It would be ideal for small productions or concerts.


Red Alert has always been uncomfortable with impulse, so he can't quite say what compelled him a few hours ago to send Inferno the message "Have the day off. Might look around the gallery. Want to come?" He's been silently screaming ever since, especially upon receiving a positive response back. All he knows is that he's been watching the footage from their meeting on the observation deck over and over, and he hasn't been able to shake Inferno from his processor ever since.

It had been an awkward, uncomfortable, and at times overly personal experience, and for some reason here he is, ready to do it all again.

I'm going to do better this time, he tells himself fiercely. We'll make polite discussion about the art, spend an hour or two together, and then safely retreat, no awkward silences or personal questions asked. Perhaps that's it: a desire to overwrite their uncomfortable previous meetings and replace them with something new. He's two strikes down. This time the third will be on his terms.

Technically he's already gathered all the data he needs from their last meeting--not to mention studied it to death trying to figure out how to do better--but he still wants this one on the record. He doesn't like the idea of these interactions not being monitored. So here he is yet again, equipped with an armful of cameras and bugs, trying to rig up a good layout for their next meeting. He feels a tad uncomfortable--the gallery doesn't exactly feel like an appropriate place for this and hiding cameras in sculptures feels invasive--but his desire to record everything outweighs his concerns.

In the end he bugs himself, sets up a few cameras in little nooks and corners, and is ready to greet Inferno a few minutes before his arrival.

Inferno hadn't expected to see Red Alert when not on shift or until he himself worked up the courage to ask Red Alert to hang out again, so he couldn't hide the little gleeful giggle he gave when Red Alert commed him. Red was asking him to hang out? Inferno had to give a quick scan of his surroundings - it was his first shift back since he'd been temporarily suspended by Tailgate - to make sure nobody had heard him make such an embarrassing noise. Luckily the hallways were quiet, and he relaxed, allowing a giddy smile to come to his face as he responded to Red Alert with, "Yeah, I'm off shift in a few cycles, I'll meet you then." For the rest of his shift all he could think about was spending time with Red (not that this was entirely uncommon these days) and he was impatient for it to end.

Unlike Red Alert, Inferno didn't think their last two meetings had been that bad. Well, the practice rooms had ended badly, but up until that point it'd been nice to hang out with both Red and Deluge. And the last time in the observation deck....okay maybe that hadn't ended well either. As his shift ends and Inferno makes a beeline for the gallery, pinging Red Alert to let the security bot know, Inferno decides he's not going to let this one end the same way. He's finally begun to acknowledge that Deluge was right about his feelings and why he was so protective of Red Alert.

The amount of time he's spent fantasizing about holding Red's servo recently pretty much made it impossible for him to keep denying it.

When he nears the gallery he slows, realizing he'd been rushing, and tries to look calm as he walks in, though his spark is fluttering with nerves in its chamber. He smiles, a little shyly, when he sees Red Alert. "Hey, Red! How's it goin'?"

Red's spark gives a little flip-flop when he hears Inferno call--because of nerves. Definitely. Red nods his head in greeting, face ever-serious but spark doing cartwheels.

"Inferno. Glad you made it." He moves closer, within casual chatting range, and forces himself to relax. You can do this, he tells himself. Remember what you've learned. No awkward questions this time. "Everything's been acceptably normal. How about you? Work going smoothly, I trust?" He's been trying to keep his nose out of the rumour mill lately, and is blissful ignorant of the fact that he's stumbled into an awkward topic right out the gate.

Inferno is trying to keep relaxed himself. His own tanks feel like they're doing little somersaults in his frame, and he's seriously worried he's going to let out another giggle. He forces fluid down his intake as he comes up to Red, looking around at the gallery. Looks like they've got the place to themselves, for now. He has to swallow again.

"Glad to hear that!" Except - 'Ferno very nearly winces. That's right. Work. The thing he can't let Red Alert find out until Inferno is ready to tell him. 'Ferno forces a sheepish smile to his face. "Not much to say on my end, either. Just been, yanno. Doin' patrols, keepin' the ship safe, all that." He hates this. Lying sours his mood somewhat, but he knows it's not the right time to confess to Red. Not yet. "Thankfully it's been pretty quiet around here lately." Except for the thing he did, oops.

"Mm, not much going on. I haven't needed to be as vigilant--" paranoid "--as usual." Honestly it had been nice to get a few weeks of downtime. The Lost Light had a penchant for...excitement. "I've been spending a lot of time in the library, or--" in various hidey-holes around the ship "--in my sleeping quarters." He glances around, feeling an awkward silence looming, and is relieved when his plan works and a conversation topic presents itself. "I haven't been to the gallery much, though. Thought this might be a nice opportunity to look around." Honestly he isn't one for art, and he's not sure Inferno is either, but the distraction is welcome and so he starts leading the way inside. "Have you been here before, Inferno?"

"That must be nice," Inferno offers, "to have more free time." The library, huh? Inferno carefully files this knowledge away. Maybe he can spend more time there too....maybe he'll bump into Red Alert....yeah, good plan. 'Ferno follows Red Alert further into the gallery, glancing around at the various art pieces and cultural exhibits as he does. "Once or twice. I like the atmosphere, and the music." There is a pleasant song playing in the gallery, the notes reminiscent of a harp. "It's a good place to go if you just want to chill out."

"It can be...good and bad," Red says carefully. Not fearing for his life is always good. Having the free time to come up with imaginary ways to fear for his life...not so good. "I suppose I should get used to visiting places like this if I'm going to have so much free time." He looks around, still not quite sure what he makes of the art but, "the music is nice, at least." He stops to study a holoprojection for a while, considering his next words. "I think I need to. You know. Expand my horizons. Find more places to 'chill out'." He coughs, the words tasting foreign to him. "If you have any recommendations, I'm all ears."

"You don't always have to go out and about, but it is nice." Inferno sheepishly rubs the back of his neck. "I know I didn't do much beyond workin' and weight lifting for a long time. And goin' to the oil baths with Deluge." Those firebros sure did love their baths. Inferno looks down at the holoprojection Red Alert has stopped at. He doesn't....really get it. It looks cool, at the very least, so that's something right? "Recommendations?" 'Ferno is caught off guard; he'd kind of zoned out staring at the projection. "Ah, well, Swe--" His mouth closes with a soft snap. He'd almost said 'Swerve's'. Yeah, it's unlikely he's going back there any time soon, and he highly doubts Red Alert would want to go ever. "Uh. There's the common lounge, or the observation deck...the oil baths are nice, and you said you already go to the library, so.." He trails off thoughtfully. "And I go to the practice rooms a lot. Maybe we could lift together sometime?"

"I'm--I--" Red is caught off-guard by Inferno's last suggestion, and now they're both staring at a weird shape-changing holoprojection while floundering for their words. "I didn't really get the chance to mention this before," he says quietly, "but I don't really do weights. I was just making the rounds, you know. I don't think I ever go in there otherwise." Not that he minded watching Inferno lift weights--aaaand his processor could stop thinking about that anytime now. "I wish there was more to do on the ship," he complains instead, "We've been on it a long time already, and we're likely to still be on it for a while yet. No wonder everyone starts causing trouble. It gets boring." And it meant that, unless they started repeating locations, they were going to run out of date spots really quickly. Well. Not date-dates, but whatever this is. "I've not been to the oil baths much, though." Only at weird times when no one else is around, and that's the problem probably. He's bored because he never really interacts with anyone. "Maybe it's better with a friend," he says aloud without realizing it.

It's a good thing Red Alert is looking at the holoprojection and not at him, so he probably doesn't see Inferno's flinch. Why'd he say something so stupid? Of course Red Alert doesn't like weights, which would be a good reason Inferno had never seen him in there before that day. "Oh, right, heh, sorry. Shoulda known." His optics flick quickly to Red Alert, then away.

"Well, it's a big galaxy, hopefully we'll land on more interestin' planets? I know whatcha mean, though. It'd be nice if we had more to do. Like..I dunno." A music room? A studio for actually making art? Not that he'd use that, really, unless he wanted to make something for Red Alert. His cheeks tinge a bit pink as he takes a moment to indulge in imagining what he'd make. The word 'friend', however, has Inferno's helm jerking back up, and the smile he gives Red Alert is radiant.

"Yeah, I mean, any time you want, I'll go with you. It's nice not to be alone." 'Ferno remembers the last time he was there, with Deluge, and the blush gets worse when he imagines cuddling up in a bath like that with Red Alert. He really needs to stop.

Bathing? Together? That isn't quite what Red Alert intended to say. His face heats as he imagines this possibility, and quickly finds it too much to handle. "M-Maybe, uh, maybe later. When we know each other better." He's talking too fast, tripping over his words as he hastily backpedals. Oh no. His blush is getting worse. He puts a hand to his face to try and cover it, but just makes it more obvious.

Oops! Inferno moved too fast. He finds his own blush increasing in correlation with Red Alert's, and - holy frag the security bot looks so cute and downright kissable when he tries to hide his face. Inferno has to straighten and look away before he does something he knows he'll regret, and he clears his intake with a staticky cough as he tries to gravitate over to a painting on a nearby standing wall. "Right! Yeah, sure, when, uh, when we're more comfortable, uh. Yeah, that's fine, Red, sure thing." What is he even saying anymore? His mouth is moving and words seem to be coming out, but they don't make much sense. Inferno quickly cuts off his babbling and tries very hard not to offline his optics in embarrassment. "Sorry."

Wow, that painting on the wall sure looks interesting. The one opposite the painting Inferno is looking at. He's going to go over there now.

Standing with his back to Inferno, Red has the safety to let his hand drop and blush in private, practically glowing with how bright his cheeks have become. He focuses intently on the painting in front of him, brow furrowed in concentration to try and drive unbidden images of a very oily and slick Inferno from his processor.

"I-It's fine," his voice is also way too staticky, and he takes a moment to clear it. "You don't have to be sorry. I think...I think you and Deluge must be used to this kind of thing, but I don't really have any close friends like that." Maybe he shouldn't have said that. "I mean I'm just not used to, uh, bathing with others."

Inferno is taking some very needed and deep vents, trying to calm himself and push thoughts of washing down Red Alert away. Can't get me right now, gay thoughts! He resets his vocalizer once before he responds, training his optics on the painting in front of him. It's a...tree? Maybe? The tentacles are a little weird, though.

"Yeah, I - sometimes I forget that not everybody does that like we do." The 'don't have any close friends' makes Inferno's spark twinge with sadness. He wants to say, I'll be your close friend. Not the right time, though. "It's fine, Red, we don't gotta."

"Yeah, maybe not just yet." If he focuses hard enough at the painting in front of him, his blush starts to go away. He'll just do that for a few kliks. "I'm not sure where we should meet next time, though. None of our ideas have been very good so far." But what's important is that he's suggested that there will be a next time, not just as a possibility, but as an inevitability.

Everything Red Alert says next has Inferno's spark jumping, hope and joy naked on his features. It's a good thing Red Alert isn't looking at him. 'Ferno also comes very close to repeating that giggle from earlier, and he has to bite his lip in order to hold it in. Not only did Red Alert say not yet (implying that, sometime in the future, they could possibly hit the baths together) but he also seems completely prepared to go on a date with Inferno again. Or. Well. Not a date. No, he can't think of it like that, he has to be careful here.

"We could try the common lounge?" 'Ferno suggests tentatively, trying not to let his current giddiness bleed into his voice. "Or...sometimes bots like to sit on the hull, have a little picnic. That'd be nice, if ya wanted."

Red wrinkles his brow. "A picnic on the hull?" He's never done that before. "Is that safe? Your energon doesn't drift away?" He can imagine himself going to set a glass down and watching it disappear off into space. They'd have to magna-clamp literally everything, and it almost sounds like too much hassle, but... "I suppose I'd be willing to try that. With you." And now he's blushing again. Did I really have to say that last part?

"Yeah, I mean, I don't think so..." Now Inferno stops, thoughtful. He'll have to ask Chromedome; he's pretty sure the other mech has had picnics up there with Rewind. "I know who would, though, I can ask." He wants to turn and go to Red Alert very badly, especially at the 'with you'. He has to bite his knuckles, in fact, cheeks turning pink again, to keep himself in check. After a klik he says, "I'd...I'd like that. A lot. To do something like that, with you." Primus this is getting ridiculous. Inferno stares hard at the painting. Help me reign in my enormous crush on this cute bot, tentacle tree.

Red Alert nods. "It's a d--" Oh no. No it's not. "Decision, then. We have. Come to a decision." Well that was only the most awkward save of all time. I'd better quit while I'm ahead. "I think I've seen enough of the gallery for now. We can reconvene with picnic plans later. If that's fine with you?"

"Yeah a date." Inferno is so pumped he says this without thinking, and then Red Alert says something else, and his optics widen in horror. No no he's screwed up he's done it now. "I mean, yeah, a decision! A decision. A good decision." If he could facepalm without it being obvious he absolutely would. Instead he gives an embarrassed smile Red Alert's way, already heading toward the exit. If Red Alert still wants to hang out with him again after this it'll be nothing short of a miracle. "Uh yeah just give me a ping when you want to do that and I'll find out if it's possible okay see you around Red this was fun bye." 'Ferno is absolutely fleeing, but he does manage to give a friendly wave and smile over his shoulder kibble before he's out the door. Frag frag frag frag.

Red Alert freezes, wondering if he heard Inferno correctly. It was a little jumbled because they'd both been speaking at the same time, but his audials haven't failed him yet.

Well, the recording devices will know. Now that Inferno is gone he's free to collect them and play them to his spark's content. And again, and again, and again...

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