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2016-07-10 What's in the Box?

From Transformers: Lost and Found

What's in the Box?
Date 2016/07/10
Location Lost Light - Docks and Storage
Participants Gearshift, Penchant, Pipes
NPCs Drabardi
Summary Oh, it's fine, it's just Pipes's collection. Gearshift and he are getting stuff out for the first Earth fan club meeting.

A steady hum of activity runs through the lower levels of the ship. Although never entirely quiet, there's a feeling of isolation that's impossible to entirely shake.


When Gearshift got the ping from Pipes asking for help with some things in storage for their upcoming meeting, the robin's egg blue femme bolted from her habsuite and drove down the halls to storage as fast as her engine could make her go. As soon as she arrived she transformed and looked around. "Wow, there's a ton in here! How much of this are we bringing out?" She asks right away.

"Gearshift? Is that you?" Pipes's voice rises up from in among the boxes and crates that occupy Cargo Bay 15. Many of them ... perhaps most of them ... are filled with pieces from Pipes's collection of Earth gadgets and trinkets. They vary in size and age, and over the top of a taller one, fingers grasp, and then Pipes hauls himself up. "Hi! I'm in a little deep at the moment, eh heh. But, I don't know, I've never put any of my stuff on display before. What do you think?"

Gearshift is impressed to say the least "It's amazing!" She calls out "What sort of things are you bringing up? Where do I start?" she's bouncing on her pedes and ready to go, she just needed Pipes to direct her.

Pipes drops to an elbow, the rest of him hanging from the tall box, and points to a smaller crate near Gearshift with his other hand. "Take a look in that one there. It's got some of my better items. Um, I think. I'll be right out!" He drops out of sight, and the sounds of rummaging and pushing resume from the cargo pile.

Gearshift does as Pipes asks, kneeling in front of the box and opening it to inspect what was inside.

Penchant is not so keen on loitering bots even if they're perfectly permitted to be down here. They just needed to stay clear as the big freight hauler bots moved about equipment, gearing up for the colony landfall. Two mechs pass Pipes and Gearshift, toting a tall comm booster of sorts, and Penchant tails to direct them. He casts a careful look, mostly towards Pipes, and lingers a moment.

A box pushes and shoves itself out from the side of the pile, and Pipes is revealed as the one pushing. He pauses to make sure other boxes around aren't about to topple, and notices Penchant's interest. "Hey there, Penchant! Just getting some things outta the ol' collection!"

Gearshift takes out some of the (very small) action figures from the box and giggles as she gets a bit distracted playing with them. She also pulls a hamburger telephone, and a couple of novelty toasters. "Pipes I love it all so far!" Gearshift laughs as she puts the box aside and looks into another one to find books and lets out a delighted noise.

Penchant stands rigid, frowning just a little bit when boxes are shuffled out of place. There's no proper inventory for Pipes' items, at least nothing that he knows of, as this is a Personal Items dealio, and storage folk can't be digging through 'em. So he watches, quiet, even when Pipes greets him, optics falling on the toasters.

Pipes's spark flutters to hear Gearshift's joy at looking through his collection. She's clearly a rare gem. After ensuring that no avalanche is about to ensue, he resumes pushing the biggish box around and to the front. He cocks his head at Penchant's continuing staring. "Something wrong, Penchant?"

This is when Gearshift straightens up and looks over, waving at the other mech "Hello there!" waiting to introduce herself until a more appropriate time, ideally when the other mech and Pipes are done conversing.

Penchant is finally prompted to smile. "No no. You ah. You two going to clean this up? Just so I know to send some janitors after you, is all," he assures quickly. "Oh, the bot from the neutral meeting," he says, finally noticing Gearshift. "What're you guys planning anyway? I can't even name half this stuff."

Pipes feigns offense, his head wobbling. "Of course! These are my prized possessions! I wouldn't leave even a Pez dispenser out. Of course, the boxes might not go back where they were to start with, but, well, I still know where stuff is anyway. Pretty much." He looks at the box he just pushed around, thinking.

Gearshift nods "Gearshift, I'm Gearshift." She says with a smile on her face. She laughs at Pipes' mock offense and goes back to digging through boxes. Her eyes light up when she opens a box of circuit boards and an old Macintosh computer. "Pipes how did you even find all of this?" She's downright gushing at this point

Penchant offers a polite little bow to Gearshift. "Penchant. And that's fine Pipes. So long as they stay within..." He pauses, looking around for a marker, "Bay 15." With the toting mechs he'd been directing out of sight, Penchant draws nearer. "I'd like to know that too - this is Terran paraphernalia, right? What's a pez?"

Pipes peers around to look at the tech that Gearshift uncovered. "Hedonia! I got that stuff on Hedonia. I'm pretty sure. Yeah, you know, this trip has been incredible for finding Earth stuff. I used to have to scrape up whatever anybot hauled back to Cybertron, or what the occasional passing trader would have for sale. But the planets we've visited, and even some of the colonies, have opened up a whole new world of Terran collectibles." He turns to reassure Penchant. "Don't worry, it'll all stay here. I don't have enough to fill a whole cargo bay ... yet. Oh, and a 'Pez' is a tiny rectangular piece of candy humans enjoy. They make columnar dispensers for them. Hold on, I'll find one!" He darts back to the boxes, practically leaping in.

Gearshift nods, "Hedonia, wow....I had no idea trade had opened up so much." She digs into another box to find, much to her amusement, a few bottles of wine and some novelty items that were clearly meant for Earth bachelorette parties. "I'm in awe. I have to be honest Pipes I wasn't expecting this much stuff and it's a treat!"

"Huh," is Penchant's lone response after Pipes dives back into the pile. He reaches to pick up a slinky. "This is just a... metal coil..." He'll never understand Earth-related anything. "If you're into trading, maybe we can get some allotted time on a proper station and seek out some Terran traders for you guys. We wouldn't be hunting for Tailgate then," he adds with a smirk.

"You have excellent taste, Gearshift!" Pipes calls from inside the box pile. There's more of those rummaging sounds, and a box lid flies up, flopping on top of some other boxes. Root, root, root. "I usually take time planetside to go shopping and hunt for shops with Terran artifacts, but if there's something more organized you want to try, Penchant, that's fine. And what's Tailgate got to do ... Eureka!"

Gearshift's plating flares a little bit with pride at the compliment. "I'd love to go hunting for Earth goodies with you. It's a lot more fun than staying on board." She's still kicking herself for missing out on Velocitron, save for the rock hunting she went on before they took off. "Would you want to come too, Penchant?" She asks

Penchant grins, "You don't recall us searching on a space station when Tailgate ran off? That lizard took a shining to you." He remains in his parade rest stance, shifting attention to Gearshift. "Wouldn't mind touching surface, if everything gets taken care of up here. I hardly know anything about Terra though. My lot hunkered down with organics during the war, but they certainly weren't Earthlings." Beat. "I'm not so sure this colony would have anything in the way of trading. It seems remote."

Pipes emerges from the fortress of boxes, artifact in hand. "Definitely, Gearshift. Next colony, let's do it." He thinks as he approaches Penchant. "Oh, that. Yeah, kept us from getting a ticket, didn't I? That place was a little ... uncomfortable, as I recall. But here, this. This is a Pez dispenser." He uncurls the fingers of one hand and gingerly picks up a small, plastic device. It's skinny and blue, but the top is black and shaped like a flared helmet. Pipes carefully pinches the helmet on top and tilts it up and down, saying in a deep voice: "Luke. I am your father."

"Well Penchant You've come to the right pair. I used to live on Earth before coming back to Cybertron." Gearshift beams, then laughs when Pipes does his best Darth Vader voice.

<FS3> Penchant rolls Earth Culture: Success. (4 3 7 1)

It sure is nice conversing with other minibots. No neck-craning or reaching here. Penchant peers at the odd device and watches as Pipes 'demonstrates'. It's such an iconic character and phrase that even Penchant understands where it's from. "Hah. War Stars right? Interesting. Should make our own version of that maybe. Lived there?" he looks to Gearshift, "Make any Terran friends? ...They don't live that long, do they."

Their own version, Pipes thinks. Perhaps Penchant could be another recruit to the soon-to-be-founded Earth fan club. He knows who Darth Vader is, after all. Pipes stashes the dispenser in his onboard storage. "You got it," he answers approvingly. As Penchant strikes up some conversation with Gearshift, Pipes returns his attention to the box he'd just dragged out. What was it he wanted from it? Hm. Memory chips aren't responding so well today, apparently. Just have to crack it open.

Gearshift nods "I had lots of Human friends, yes" Her look gets a little sad when Penchant mentions human life spans "You're right, and saying goodbye was never easy."

Penchant looks a bit too proud for getting that reference. "I imagine not," he appends sheepishly. "It must've been worrisome though, having to make sure you didn't, y'know... accidentally step on 'em? The organics we dealt with were twice our size."

Pipes shudders at the thought of stepping on humans. Some of the less cultured bots on the ship even joke about it when they're chatting with each other. He shakes his head as he finally pries the lid of the box up. He lays it on the deck, and then hops up to hang on the edge of it, feet dangling outside, head and arms inside, as he searches for, well, whatever it was he was looking for originally. Or something else neat. Discovery is part of the fun!

Gearshift starts going through boxes again and unearths a whole box of Barbie and friends dolls. "I didn't have that problem, I used my holoform. A lot." It was actually really hard since she had to jerry rig a solar panel to recharge with. "that made it a lot easier to navigate the city I lived near"

"Ah, yeah, holoforms would be handy. Never had a reason to get one, myself." Penchant watches with some wariness as Pipes dangles from a crate. "Did... you guys want a dolly cart for all this or something? I take it you mean to transport all this somewhere."

"That would actually be helpful, Penchant," Pipes's muffled voice answers from inside the box. There's a shout of recognition as he finds what he forgot he was looking for, and after grabbing a hold he slides himself down the side of the box as he lifts it out. Victorious, he sets it down gently, facing Gearshift and Penchant.

The artifact is itself a box, a bit taller than the typical human. Its bottom half is opaque, but its top half is glassed in, and inside there is the form of a human female, from the abdomen up. She is clad in gaudy raiment, colorfully patterned and metallic fabrics, with garish jewelry around her neck, suspended arms, and forehead. Her face has a vacant stare beneath too much makeup, and long frazzled hair hangs from it. The front glass panel has spelled out in flowing letters the word "Drabardi". Pipes steps back to get a good look at it. "Check this out."

Gearshift's optics flicker as she looks at the fortune teller "Does it still work?" She asks Pipes, starting to bob excitedly again without even realizing it. "Please tell me it works."

Penchant has zero idea what he's looking at here. "A drone? A human drone?" he asks, ever clueless. Tap-tap on his arm-mounted inventory scanner-of-sorts and two hovering platforms eventually make their way over.

"Sort of ..." Pipes answers Penchant, slowly, but with a knowing glance to Gearshift. "And yeah, it should. Let's see!" He reaches down and presses a button on the steel panel centered on Drabardi's lower half. The figure inside starts to move, jerky arm motions and smoother turns of the head. Lights shine up from below her, attempting to create a mysterious sight.

"Come closer, come closer, and I shall tell you what I see," the fortune teller says, in a fuzzy human female voice. The head's mouth isn't moving. An orb in front of her glows with alternating colors as she continues to wave her arms. Then it all stops, and a tiny slip of paper falls into a receptacle sticking out of the panel.

Pipes produces a pair of tweezers - he grabbed them knowing he'd need them for this, when he still remembered what he was looking for - and picks up the paper. He holds it up to his optics and giggles. "Listen to your friends, they have wise advice," he reads aloud.

Gearshift claps her servos and looks like a human kid on Christmas. She's enchanted, absolutely enchanted "amazing!!! This Definitely needs to come to the meeting!"

Penchant isn't used to seeing the jerky movements of Terran machinery, and leans in a little, palms on his knees. "Oh, look at that," he half-laughs. "It's supposed to simulate magic? Clairvoyance? This is for entertainment, right?" He grins. It's all rather charming. "I would've never guessed such things existed down here," he observes, gesturing vaguely.

Pipes laughs, a smile nearly busting out from behind his mouthplate. "I think this should be the main attraction! Well, maybe one of them. And yeah, this is totally for humans to have fun with. Works for us too. And, oh yes," and he wags a finger, "never underestimate the collection. It got us out of a real jam on Luna 1." Specifically, an RC car that they rewired into a drone to find the keys to a jail cell. Fun times until a little after that. Anyway!

Gearshift gives another delighted squeal "Awesome!! This is all so awesome" She hasn't been this excited about something since coming back to Cybertron. "I'm gonna load some of these boxes up and bring them...could I bring them to my habsuite? It's just me right now so it'd be pretty safe." She'll bring the boxes wherever Pipes wants them, quite frankly. "Thank you for the dollies, Penchant, hopefully we'll see you at the meeting." Once she's loaded as many boxes as she can safely load onto the dolly, Gearshift leaves with her payload.

"I'll take your word for it," Penchant nods. "Sure thing, Gearshift. Er, I don't think I could... contribute much of anything..." Off Gearshift goes. Pen turns back to Pipes, surveying the amount of crates in full now. There could be a lot of this human stuff... "Back to work with me then. Let me know if you need anything else. And thanks for sharing!"

"Thanks again, Gearshift! Your habsuite is fine, if you have room. See you at the meeting!" Pipes calls after her. She did snag a good number of boxes, and Pipes thinks most of them are among those he was looking to grab. Probably. She may even more excited than he is, if that's even possible. He spins to face Penchant, leaning lightly on Drabardi. "I think these hovercarts will do it. I'm not bringing the whole thing out, this time anyway. So, yeah, no problem, and thanks for the assist. And you should definitely come to the meeting, everybody can contribute something. Hey, you know all about Star Wars, right?" He gives a friendly wave, and then works on loading up Drabardi and the rest for transport.

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