2016-07-29 Tabula Rasa

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Tabula Rasa
Date 2016/07/29
Location Lost Light - Habsuites - Common Lounge
Participants Blaster, Skids, Gearstrip
Summary Skids has determined on a new approach to his lease on life. Gearstrip and Blaster don't necessarily agree with him about it. (Also, some gossip. What?)

Despite hearing about some dungeoning going on, Blaster decides to pass up on it. He opts to spend his downtime instead hanging out instead in the common lounge. This time, hopefully, he can 'git gud' at a game and actually manage to bliss out rather than ruminating on things said about him or assumed about him. Seeing one of the consoles freed, he goes and picks out a fighting game and puts it on. No need for a versus mode, he just wants to play by himself for a bit. Ah, chill time.

Literature has wisdom beyond its time. Had Skids read up about zen navigation he would have approved. As, based upon his time on board, he's been using it without realising. He often doesn't end up where he intended to go... but ends up where he needed to be. Playing a handheld system in one hand and drinking from a super-sized supercharged ener-energy-drink Skids finds himself in the common lounge.

Where he needed to be. Not in his quarters with a comfortable sofa to relax on. Spotting Blaster Skids waves but, to avoid distracting the fellow gamer, he doesn't say anything as he doesn't want to be a back seat combo breaker.

It's relatively rare for her to be at loose ends, but when Gearstrip turns up in the common lounge this evening, it is in the peculiar circumstance of lacking a particular direction: her side projects her finished, her shift over, and the end of her shift simply off in terms of catching the usual crowd, she now finds herself drifting vaguely into the common lounge to see who is around. Her pale eye flicks across the screen of the video game that Blaster is playing, but her glance passes over it without recognition. The small freckled blue minibot sort of shrugs and wanders her meandering way over to the energon dispenser, humming to herself under her breath some Camien tune or other without really thinking about it.

Blaster wasn't that into the game, as he spots Skids waving at him from the corner of his optic. He waves back at the mech, then looks over (pausing the game of course, cause why wouldn't he?) and says, "Hey good lookin', why don't you join me on the couch?" He wasn't too serious about the flirting though, as it is just his way of being playfully jest. Turning his head to the other side upon hearing the Camien tune, he asks, "That's actually pretty, where did that tune come from?" of the femme at the energon dispensery.

Skids finishes the level he's on just before he hears Blaster. Wow. It just must have been him. The world is a lot happier than he remembered. Then again, when he was spending all his time trying not to think but to remember it probably didn't give him the chance to pay attention. Putting the game away Skids smiles and says, "Okay, but if you keep flattering like that I might start to believe it."

Skids is still new to humor, so he's not sure how good he is at it yet. Hopefully it comes across the right way though. As the superlearner crosses the room to the couch Blaster's situated at Skids spots Gearstrip. With a nod he says, "Hi there, how's it going?" He's still working on small talk too.

Gearstrip startles a little at the question, head coming up as she turns on her heel to look over toward him. She smiles a crooked smile as she balances her weight back on those heels, a venting snortish sigh cycling through her systems in a soft rush of fans. "Oh, uh, it's from home probably. Assuming I didn't pick it up here somewhere. Er, home's Caminus." Her smile slides a little wider for Skids's greeting and she tips her chin up, pacing a few steps closer in towards them both. "Skids, right? Hi! I've been in your room!" She stops and bites her lip. "Okay, that sounds weird. It's not that weird. Getaway had me fix his cabinet?"

Blaster laughs at both Skid's comment and Gearstrip's reaction. "Then that is my goal Skids, to flatter you so hard you start to believe what I am saying." He says jokingly as Skids joins him. "You are welcome to pick up a controller and we can plays versus. Hint: I'm terrible at fighting games." To the Camien, the gives a wider smile and waves her over. "I don't believe we met yet. I'm Blaster. I'd love to learn about Camien songs at some point, I know a few of them would have a religious slant to is, if what I heard about Caminus is true."

Skids settles into the couch and, after a moments thought and another moment to drain the drink dry Skids gives a casual nod to Blaster, "Okay, I can give it a go. I'd not worry though. I've been playing Wildside so much lately I'm getting rusty with most other games." Skids pulls up a character select screen and picks one of the fighters. "Careful though, I could end up learning how to flatter back. I pick things like that up sometimes."

Skids laughs softly, "No, doesn't sound weird at all! Just sorry you had to put up with my mess of gaming gear and datapads." Skids admits to Gearstrip, and he's now smiling a little brighter at the mention of Getaway which doesn't involve Skids immediately racing to get Getty out of whatever trouble he'd got himself into. Skids could get used to that. "Although if I've got too much clutter in my hab do let me know. I can always move some of it down to storage."

"Hi, Blaster! I'm Gearstrip." Her footsteps light as she picks her way across the floor, Gearstrip comes to rest before the edge of the L shaped couch and drops a servo across its edge as she cants her head, pale eyes flicking to the screen and back again. "I don't come up to the bridge much so that's probably why you haven't seen much of me. Techie, y'know. There are definitely way better Camiens than me to talk to about musicality -- and religion for that matter. I mean, sure, the Way of Flame is very important to us? Culturally?" She leans into the brace of her hand against the sofa, shifting her weight slightly between her small pedes. "Definitely don't need to clean up for me. You should see what Skywarp has all over our room. Your room's fine. Or I mean it was, it's been awhile. For all I know you two have been redecorating in there and uh--" She stops, at a loss. What would this entail. "--yeah, I dunno," she finishes a bit lamely.

"Redecorating, huh..." Blaster trails off thoughtfully. "You and Getaway planning to do something big in the suite? Also, I am always good for being flattered. Having my ego fluffed up is my favorite thing." That comment was to both Gearstrip and Skids, a playfully flirty wink following after. He also chose his character and random chose a setting.

Nearly dropping his controller from laughing that hard, Skids explains, "Redecorating? Getaway and me? No. Getaway... apart from telling me I'm the wrong person then moving on to only talking to me if he needed something... then finishing the level with ignoring me completely these days... No. He's done with me. I can't be whoever it was he knew and..."

"... I'm okay with that now. I'm in a good place and want to stay there. So I'll do me and Getaway can do Getaway. I can live with that." Skids is still smiling happily. He shuffles the controller back into is hands and gets into the first round. He's playing slow, basic and defensive. More having fun with being able to remember the move sequences and nuances of that game rather that trying to beat his opponent.

"Is it? I'm always sort of awkward about it, personally." Gearstrip grins at Blaster like she's about to summons up some friendly ego-boosting, you know, like you do, but she loses some of the intensity of her smile as Skids speaks on. She shifts, leaning forward on her elbow against the couch, and the smile fades the rest of the way into a frown as she studies Skids. She shifts, leaning her knee into the sofa's edge. "I don't think Getaway is done with you, Skids. I'm not sure he knows how to be done. He cares about you a lot. I mean. Or maybe the idea of you." She bites the curve of her lower lip and the crease of her helm dips over her pale eyes. "I know he's all hung up on the memory thing or which you you are or-- or something. I don't know what to do about that."

"Whoops?" Skids exclaims as he accidently manages to make his fighter do a high risk attack... no where near Blaster's fighter just causing a loss of health and his pixelated champion falling on its pixelated face. Skids bobbles as he giggles at the total failure in good humor and says to Blaster, "Yeah. That was totally tactical. Honest. Either that or I'm that distracted by the charm offensive even my character's losing the will to fight."

Skids turns to Gearstrip a little and says, "It's not such a big deal. Some people get on, some don't. He liked who I was. I like who I am. In any case... soon enough it won't be a problem anymore. I'm going to see an expert. Have the memories purged completely. So they'll never come back. Fully cut the ties to the past so everyone can more on." Skids then tries to get back in the game by doing a little sidestep-stike-ing. He's probably blown it though. Why would the toggle maps command for a different game, different system, be the right thing to press? Wow. He's really rusty.

Oh, it's gossip, Blaster's favorite! He stays quiet now, keeping half a focus on kicking Skids's skidplate all across this game (he's still sure Skids will come back with a surprise whoopin') and the other focus on what Gearstrip is saying. He doesn't know everything that goes on here with the ship's crew. He certainly wants to know more. Apparently, there was drama behind Skids's smile.

Blaster certainly feels that, putting on a smile and acting like certain things don't bug him.

Gearstrip presses her knuckles hard against the heel of her opposite palm, fidget ill-contained as she bites at the inside of her cheek. The edge of her helm runs to a deeper furrow. She seems more interested in watching Skids than she is in watching the sprites on the screen, but what in the world she expects to see there is another question. "Because-- what you had was just fragments and it was frustrating and -- I guess I get that but, just erase?" she says. Though she smiles often and wide, it seems she has forgotten to put hers back on now. She looks altogether troubled and waveringly uncertain as the next question she asks in a smaller voice is: "Erase ... Getaway?"

Blaster looks at Skids now too. He didn't have to say anything because his question was much the same as Gearstrip's own. Although... after thinking it over for a bit...

"I know this might be none of my business Skids... I take that back, it is none of my business. But I have once made a career out of being in things that are not my business so, just a small opinion- erasing your past doesn't exactly mean a clean slate. The past comes up in mysterious ways, or unexpected ones." More quietly now. "It won't exactly solve any problems between you and Getaway."

Skids pauses the game and looks to each of them in turn. "Don't look so worried." He soothes, "Whatever was done to my memories was done artificially. All I want to do is let someone look at the job done already, make sure it's not going to be harmful, sweep up any escaped fragments and lock it all in there neatly."

"Having it all doubly locked means it'll be safely away. Hopefully for good. I don't know exactly how or why it was done. All I know is the only reason I wanted it back was to try and be whoever Getaway remebered. Since he's now ignoring me I've felt better and realised all the stress and strife was trying to be this person I'm not. So I let go of that. Getaway'll have to let go too." Skids shrugs.

Gearstrip is quiet for a long moment. Her fingertips run over the back of her hand as she straightens up, the trickle of air sighing through her vents as she frowns. She ducks her head a little. "I mean, you should be whoever you are. But that doesn't mean..." She trails off and then looks up. Her uncertain gaze lights on Blaster. "I don't know," she says. "I don't think he's going to see it that way, Skids. You can't live -- as something for Getaway and not for you, but that doesn't mean ... your friendship doesn't exist."

"Okay, I got more opinions." Blaster couldn't help it, but it was brought up and he is hearing about it. What does he have to win or lose by keeping super quiet about it. "I think you tied up your failure at friendship due to Getaway wanting you to be someone you don't even remember, right? And- this is just my thoughts based on what I am hearing- maybe Getaway needs help, help in the form of having him accept that the mech you are is the one he should get to know better. If you need... uh..." He makes a handwavey gesture. "tidying up, that's fine. But I don't think you should consider your friendship dead yet, cause you both haven't really said what you both need to say. And in your case, it is you telling Getaway that you can't be who you used to be, but would like to be friends with him... that is, if you want."

Shrugging again, Skids says, "Since he came on board, Getaway has used me to get freed from security, twice, drew a gun on me, then told me to stand in the background while he tried to get Brainstorm to build something that'd do something to the engines. And he shouted at me once. That's the highlights and the near sum total of our interactions since he stepped on board."

Skids stands and furthers his point, "Meanwhile Getaway's been making friends all over the ship. People he's shared drinks, his time, his thoughts and feelings with." Skids shrugs again, "I don't think our interactions are healthy when compared to that of those with his other friends. As a result, seperate to my memory loss as a condition, I don't feel Getaway is a good friend for me to have. I wish him no ill will but I do not crave his company either."

Skids stands, silent, allowing the point to sink in. Then there's a beep. "Oh flax. Sorry. I gotta run. If I miss this tourney-" The rest of Skids statement is lost as he transforms and heads off at high speed to get ready for the next gaming contest he's entered.

Gearstrip looks like she might be about to marshal some kind of argument and then ends up at a loss. She watches Skids leave with a frown and then scrubs the frown away from her face, dragging her hands over her features and then back up over her head, almost knocking her goggles askew as she scrunches up her nose. Her mouth twists, her smile hooking sidelong and rueful as she glances back up and over at Blaster, and she sits down on the edge of the sofa, her feet spread wide at angles in either direction as she shakes her head. "Well," she says, "I guess that's not a problem I can fix."

Blaster had no words to day to Skids's rebuttal. If that behavior was directed at him, Blaster would be sure that he would not want to be friends with that kind of person either. Before he could add anything more to that, Skids suddenly leapt up and zoomed off like his engine was on fire. That kind of exit never fails to make him flabbergasted with its suddeness. Looking over at Gearstrip though, he smiles. He knows she is frustrated a bit but... "Yeah, I have to agree. That's not fixable. In that case, the one to shoulder the fixing is Getaway." He goes back to the game now. "I still don't think that Skids should lock away all his memories regardless, but I am not him."

"I don't think Getaway's--" Gearstrip starts to say and stops. She works her hands together, fingers lacing. Her sigh trickles through her systems and her smile is a little sad as she shakes her head. "He's lonelier than Skids thinks," she says, "And I don't... I'm not contradicting anything Skids says about what they've done together or whatever, I don't know enough to say." She slides her arms into a loose fold across her chest, half hugging herself as she tips her head back. "But that's going to -- hurt," she says, voice soft. "Maybe just Getaway. I don't know, though. I doubt it. But I can't imagine forgetting a bunch of my life in the first place, let alone what I'd do about it if it happened."

Blaster 's arms slacked a little, thinking now of Beachcomber. How much have his processor been damaged to the point of forgetting certain things? It seems that the memory of how he was used and how Blaster was nearly dead seemed to be eating away at Beach for so very long. "I think that is the point to losing a memory, or memories. We wouldn't know we lost them if or when we did. Skids sounded more at peace with not knowing than he seems curious about knowing. And... whatever he seems to remember, it doesn't seem to be good enough to want to keep or know more of." A sigh. "It's... a hard debate, and I don't live a life where I forgotten most of it." There seems to be an underlying yet quiet ping of pain to his words there.

"No, well, me either. And I don't know either Skids -- the new one or the old one." Gearstrip tightens the fold of her arms, temporarily, and then looses them to let them drop, fingers tightening over her knees. "I don't have what you Cybertronians have ... the war scars. So maybe I'm just not in a position to know. I mean, if there's a part of somebody that they'd unwish for themselves, I certainly can't be the one to tell them no." She looks down at her hands, and smiles a little ruefully. "But I can't say-- if I'd feel differently about it, if it weren't for Getaway. So. Who knows."

Blaster looks curiously at Gearstrip. "You are very protective of Getaway. Are you two close?"

"Er." Gearstrip looks distinctly sheepish and twists her hands together between her knees. "Sort of. Maybe. No. I don't know?"

Blaster leans closer to Gearstrip. "Pardon my crassness. And maybe intrusiveness. Do you have a... crush...on Getaway?"

"No! I mean, crush?" Gearstrip tightens the press of her hands together as if to contain her fidgeting and tightens her shoulders like she's stopping herself from squirming as she scrunches up her face. "I mean! We're friends. And. Stuff. Of course I care about him. That's not weird!"

<FS3> Blaster rolls Nosiness: Good Success. (5 3 3 8 3 4 7 1 1)

Blaster squints at her for a long while, then leans back on the couch. "No, that is not weird at all. I mean, I have someone I care about a lot." A smile. "Care so much for that he is my boyfriend. Like... I know that there are people who can care a lot for their friends. But that is not always the case." He smiles at her a little. "You sure seem fidgety for someone who is just your friend though. Does Getaway care about you as deeply?"

"Ugh!" Gearstrip presses the palms of her hands against her cheeks as though she is checking the temperature levels there for telltale signs of the kind of heat that comes with a flush, which in itself is probably a little self-revealing, before she reaches up and braces them both over her head, behind her goggles. "No. I mean, I don't-- and I mean I'm not -- we're not even!" At some point there's going to be an end to one of these sentences, right? "I wouldn't even know what to do with a--."

Blaster is laughing lightly. "I see through your fluster that you got it bad for Getaway." He winks. "I won't say anything if Getaway doesn't know. But that explains your concern for Getaway's feelings. So- does he see Skids as a friend? Does he want him as a friend?"

"I have no idea what Getaway knows," Gearstrip says, which is at least a whole sentence, plaintive and almost exasperated. "And neither does anybody else. He talks and talks and says all kinds of things and who knows what he means by any of it?" Her eyes narrow, helm creasing in a frown; she lets loose with a little 'hfffft' of a noise as her hands slide back down her face. "I mean I don't even know what I... scrap." Her hands drop to her lap. "I mean, I don't-- I worry a lot about Getaway and some of it he's-- I mean, it should be private, you know? But I think it hurts him that he's lost what they had. I think it will hurt him more to know that Skids has given up. And I think it will hurt him the most because he already expects it, to be ... tossed." She looks away. "Anyway," she says. "This is all-- I guess it's not anything I can do anything about, you know? Or you either. I'm just ... chattering, I guess."

"Have you told Getaway that you care a lot about him? Maybe even want to be his friend? More than friends?" Blaster asks Gearstrip now.

"Well, of course I've said we're friends," Gearstrip says, "and I've told him ... stuff. I mean, I say all kinds of stuff. Try and stop me saying stuff." She laughs aloud, almost as though surprised at herself. "Flames," she says.

"Flames? What about flames?" Blaster is very inquisitive tonight. But that suddenly came out of nowhere and he didn't understand what that meant? Flames of love? Flames of actual flames of fire? Rodimus's gaudy flame decoration?

"What?" Gearstrip looks confused, apparently by Blaster's confusion. She peers at him for a moment, and then her expression changes as something clicks. "Oh. You know, like-- like the Forge. Like the Mistress. Solus." She opens her hands, spread wide in a broad wave. "Caminus thing, I guess."

"Oh... ohhhh..." Okay, now Blaster gets it is an exclaimation. Then he laughs again. "Primus you are too cute."

"Ack." Gearstrip laughs again, much more self-consciously. "If you say so," she says. She scrubs a hand at the back of her neck. "I'm just -- me."

Blaster passes her the second controller. "If you don't have anything else to do, play a few rounds with me. Let's get our minds off of things like memories and someone else's relationship issues. And have some fun and just... chill out. Relax like we are Beachcomber."

"I don't think I know Beachcomber," Gearstrip confesses as she picks up the controller, balancing its weight in her hands, "and I'm really bad at fighting." But with these objections made, she doesn't seem to have any actual complaints about Blaster's plan. She peers up at the screen and goes, "But um, right. Okay. What do we do?"

"Oh good, someone else who is bad at fighting games. We can both be terrible at this together." Blaster smiles at her. "And one day, you should meet Beach. He's pretty cool. " He pats the seat next to him. "I'll show you how to play."

Gearstrip scoots up across the couch so that she can perch next to Blaster, small blue figure determinedly clutching her console controller. "Okay," she says. "Let's go. Team terrible."

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