2016-11-10 Fears And Secrets Shared

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Fears And Secrets Shared
Date 2016/11/09
Location Lost Light: Recreation -- Swerve's
Participants Skids, Gearshift, Kickback, Folly
Summary Folly gets her fears answered, Gearshift and Kickback share secrets

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 booths 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.

A sign outside the door says:

                        No Guns, No Swords, No Bombs                         

Underneath is written: I MEAN IT!! LOCK YOUR WEAPON SYSTEMS DOWN AND DUMP EVERYTHING ELSE IN THE BIN BY THE DOOR. It is signed with a little frowning Swerve face.

On the other side of the door is a SHAME LIST. No, really, that's what it says. It has the number of days that various people are banned from Swerve's and counts down at the start of the morning shift.

Skids walks into Swerves. Strangely he doesn't set off Brainstorm's lightshow. The great supergenius once said that he was too blue for the early calibrations. Now it's a case of he's too black. Charred, still smoking and some of the panels that are to fully hide his on board arsenal unable to fully retract... Skids should look like hell right now.

However, armed only with a glowing grin and standing a thousand feet tall by the strength of his stride, Skids feels great and, somehow, is working the battle damage like it were the latest look off of the hottest catwalk. He orders a drink, neatly spins on the spot, leans and looks around the bar in case there's anyone fun to talk to.

It's not as though Gearshift has been specifically looking for Skids, but she is surprised and happy to catch him coming into Swerve's. Once he's seating she sidles right up to him "Hey there stranger," She teases, then gets right to the point "I'm glad I caught you, I was wondering how your talk with Kickback went after I left?" She's concerned and it's written all over her faceplates.

As if to answer the question, Kickback enters, carrying with him a box - a box that contains Folly's missing kibble. He notices Skids and Gearshift, and goes right over to them. "Ah! I'm glad I caught up with both of you. Have either of you seen Folly? She's still, ah, missing a few things." He grins sheepishly and holds out the box as evidence.

Folly is sitting by herself in the bar. She isn't even near the neon lights or christmas lights that she generally favors. The entire situation of late has been...difficult to cope with, and while she was self-aware enough to need to talk, it seemed that Rung was impossible to get ahold of, of late.

Not that she went so far to make an appointment. It was a glass of engex before her that she stared at. It had a siphon straw on it. The Femme's fuel moderation intake chip must be a lightweight.
Absently she draws out her datapad, her gloomy mood was only conducive to one thing. Art.
While nobody was looking over her shoulder at the moment, the datapad contains artwork for a new little cartoon of hers. It featured Gearshift and Kickback, two of the more recent Cybertronians to make an impact on her. And yet Kickback....Kickback, she just couldn't work with. This was her outlet, her expression for the Lost Light's BBS, and she couldn't put into drawings what she needed to say...

Skids notices from his leaning position first Gearshift, then Kickback coming his way, By the time Gearshift has asked her question Skids says, calm and cool, "Hey there Gearshift... Hey Kickback!" Skids minutely nods in the super-spy's direction to do all he can to avoid a blindside situation. As he gets his drink he then has a thought hit him and orders something else. It can wait. Following up on Kickback's question Skids clicks his fingers and points in Folly's direction. "I'd say... thataway." he then takes a sizable draw from the pitcher he ordered. "Wow. Yeah. Needed that." he notes.

Gearshift's helm goes in all directions as she follows gestures and greetings. Spark warming, she greets Kickback with a shy grin, taking a cursory sip of her drink. She glances at folly and wilts a little though "She looks like a kicked puppy." She notes, standing and going to check on the femme.

Gearshift approaches Folly carefully, not wanting to startle the other femme. "Hey Folly," She greets gently "Mind if I join you?"

Folly actually flinches as Gearshift comes in close, her datapad clatters as she hides it reflexively. It is Gearshift, the Femme who showed at least a passing interest in Eneraetherology. It was enough of a relief that she sits up a bit straighter. "Oh." Her hands go to the table, trying to be proper, as opposed to the simply barbaric practice of elbow joints on the table. "Gearshift, yes see..., ah....yes." She clutches her drink before her, and looks back at it for a few moments. That was probably a yes to the request.

"Thanks," Kickback says to Skids. He takes the box over to Gearshift, and more importantly, Folly. Carefully he approaches, setting the box on the table, sliding it over to the smaller femme. "You left these. I made sure they were tidied up for you."

Skids, watches the two come and go and become three. He knows that three's a crowd but... even amongst the oodleplexes of data in his vast databases he's not got the first clue what four makes. So, he drains pitchermus prime and moves on to ordering seconds. Not before taking two smaller objects passed to him from behind the bar. Maybe later.

Gearshift gently leans and, instinctively, touches Folly's servo, and offers her a look that says 'you're safe with me' "Folly, what can I do to help you?" She asks softly, looking up at Kickback as he brings the box over. "Thank you, Kickback" She murmurs.

Folly looks at Gearshift, her gaze somber. "Ah, I see, ah well, I." She suddenly freezes when Kickback appears, bearing a gift. Her optics are fully on him as she turns in her seat, her hands up a bit. Nothing happens for several moments, as the awkward silence looms, and Skids orders another pitcher.

She just stares at Kickback in horror, but she's not alone right now. Skids seemed to be okay with her, and Gearshift, she actually gave Gearshift a LESSON in something. Her hand delicately lifts up, and takes her package, as she pulls it closer gingerly. "I...i saw it." She says to him simply, almost as if in an apologetic tone.

"It's alright. I understand if you aren't comfortable around me. I would understand if you never wanted to be around me again," Kickback says in a soft, consoling tone of voice. "I ... was not myself. I've been altered against my will, and I struggle to keep that side of me under control at all times. It's easier on the ship." He takes a step back and away from Folly to give her space.

"Y'know... make it to go." Skids says, putting a deposit on the pitcher so he can enjoy the high grade one deck down at his hab. Also see if Sterling has sparked a new interest for him. Skids is always on the lookout for new things, especially since games have finally tamed the hunger for his superlearning complexes. He does catch a look at himself in the pitcher's lid. Wow. Yeah. Maybe he needs a little superficial sorting out soon. Meanwhile... he can work with it. His guns still have guns and, as the training room found out... he's still got the greatest bang since the big one. So celebrations are essential. Scooping up the pitcher and leaving a tip in the jar Skids happily heads out.

Folly could've said nothing, and gotten exactly what she wanted. She wanted him to leave her alone, after all. Her processor flickers back to that event, she had actually seen Rung in the distance, slam the door shut on Vortex and Flame, shutting them inside while the strange monster dogs attacked. And then Kickback...he brutally killed one of them in the most gory, disgusting way possible.

"I saw it...I mean...I heard it." She clarifies, a stutter in her vocalizer for a moment. "Hunger...." Folly looks away, "I don't know why. I only look at energy, and I listen to it yes...but I heard it yell and scream and beg to eat..."
She looks to Kickback, obviously unnerved, obviously underpowered to take on this challenge, and says with a tremble in her voice. "Are you going to eat me?"

With that statement, Gearshift looks up to Kickback, knowing she can't answer for him. He has to be the one to reassure Folly, not her. She moves closer to Folly, trying to offer comfort with Proximity.

"No," Kickback answers. Honesty is a strange path, but he finds himself thrust upon it. "I am only drawn to the injured and the dead, with the dead being the most difficult to ignore. So long as you are in the state you're in, there's nothing to tempt me." He takes a deep breath. "But I would fight it regardless. There was just too much... death, to ignore in that underground hell."

"But I am not strong..." She shifts, even standing up on her seat, she's not as tall as Kickback. The box is held in her hands. "I am weak...I wasn't meant to fight. I *can't* fight. I..."

In the grand scheme of things, she was prey.

"I w...I want to...." The moment was painful, here she was being courageous, standing up to someone for once, but what was it worth? If it wasn't Grimlock, or some monster, it was going to be him that finally killed her. "I..."

"I want you to know that I understand....and its okay...."
She shifts in her position, saying politely "I have to go.", then takes her package with her. She stops, turns around, and gives a courteous bow, "Thank you." motioning to her items, then flees before the situation could get any worse.

Gearshift releases the vent she held in. "That went better than it could have." She says, looked to Kickback and gesturing across from her "Care to join me?" She invites, half playfully.

Kickback watches Folly go. He's not sure what to make of it; but he hopes it will lead to something better than tension between them before. "Still, I wish I could allay her fears entirely." He can't. The reality is that it is entirely possible he could lose control and devour her.

Trying to let it go, he turns his attention to Gearshift - her invitation certainly makes it a little easier to relax and think about something more pleasant. "Certainly," he answers, walking over to her.

Gearshift does her best to sound reassuring. "You may not be able to entirely, but this was promising. More so than the oil baths." Slowly, Gearshift reaches for Kickback's servo, gently resting hers atop his.

"Y'know, you skipped out sooner than I'd planned," Kickback grins over at Gearshift, taking her hand with his, holding it. "I /had/ intended to use that detailing kit towards -your- benefit."

Gearshift's expression turns bashful, a shy smile tugging at her lips "Sorry~" She flushes slightly, "I got a ping from the library about a story I'd been waiting on." She uses her free servo to sip her drink.

"Ah-*ha*," he notes, still grinning. "I should have told you in advance then. I was just ... a little nervous about being around so many people at once in the oil bath." He still sounds a little nervous about it.

Gearshift beams "That's the risk with public baths: No clue who will come and go." She sips her drink again "But I wouldn't be against detailing each other sometime." Like a date? Absolutely! Gearshift thinks to herself.

"We'll have to set aside some time to do that," Kickback agrees. Why yes, that would make a very good date indeed.

Now that he has Gearshift all to himself, he wonders what to do next! Certainly they could drink, but if they have too much, that would get a little... awkward. No, no, let's keep refueling simple, no overcharging tonight. So what to do next? Conversational topics race through his head as he weighs and measures each carefully, checking against anything in said conversation that might go wrong. Looking for the wrong in each topic has the unfortunate side effect of leading him to discard each and every one.

Oh, and leaves him staring blankly at Gearshift, holding her hand.

Gearshift decides the best topic is "You've shared a lot about yourself lately, voluntarily or no," She starts. "I left the autobots because my scouting platoon and I were sent on a mission we weren't meant to surivive." It's much more succinct than when she told Quicksight, but she's also had time to think about how much she wants to reveal at once since then.

Kickback snaps to, his antenna standing up straight, then wobbling a little. He's broken out of his mental loop. He picks up what she's said, and processes it. "I'm sorry. I'd heard of similar situations - Wreckers in particular were Autobot expendables." He wonders if that's what she was. But she's still alive, which is a strong indication she wasn't.

Gearshift nods, and continues "We were a small scouting platoon, but we were either too vocal about anti-functionist ideas, or we just out lived our usefulness. Either way, we were fed bad intel and sent on our merry way."

He sighs. "I'd hoped for better from Autobots. They were supposed to be our moral superiors."

Gearshift snort "You'd think that, but it really wasn't the case. I mean, Optimus Prime had ideals, but the senate had its own plans. Who knows what would have happened if they weren't slaughtered." She says frankly. "Pardon what I'm about to say, but both sides were full of smoke. Megatron got a taste of absolute power and it corrupted the very hopes and dreams he'd had. At the cost of all those who had followed him." She pauses "I almost joined."

"No apologies needed. I lived that nightmare," Kickback agrees. "The call against functionism wasn't the wrong thing. I saw the castes completely, from disposables to elites, and I wanted the freedom that a casteless society would give. My joining was ... not really something I had a choice in, but joining kept me alive. You, at least, could have chosen something that resonated with your sense of justice."

"Unfortunately, trying to thrust change onto a static society required the use of individuals who would be willing to bury their consciences to do whatever it took to accomplish the goals. Once your army is full of those who would place ends over means, the only way to focus and drive them was to become far more ruthless than the system you wanted to replace."

Gearshift gives his servo a squeeze "At the time, I had been the pupil of sorts to a very low-level senator, Rivet. He'd wanted change for the better, and hoped to avoid a war. When he saw how bad things were getting he made sure I was with the autobots, thinking I'd be safer." She smiles, a little bitter. She looks up "Who knows what would have happened if I had followed through and joined the decepticons." So many of her friends had enlisted under Megatron, wanting to see the changes the warlord had promised. "I had read Towards Peace and became enraptured with his message."

"It really was his magnum opus. I can only wonder, if he's out there, what he thinks of himself now," Kickback says, thoughtful. He squeezes Gearshift's hand back.

"I wonder if there's still a way to keep the spirit behind it going."

"To live the way we do: For each day, and for each other." Gearshift answers. "We live with a refusal to enforce the old ways, and make new ways." Gearshift smiles sweetly "We do like the humans do: Love no matter how bad it hurts."

"To live the way we do: For each day, and for each other." Gearshift answers. "We live with a refusal to enforce the old ways, and make new ways." Gearshift smiles sweetly "We do like the humans do: Love no matter how bad it hurts."

Gearshift had meant love in any capacity, but Kickback's sincerity makes her flush, frame growing warm. "If we're being honest," Her optics blink, "The feeling is mutual." She has a lot of love for humanity, and her fellow cybertronians, but there was a very special place in her spark for romantic love, for that rush to her systems that only one other had ever given her. "And I don't want to mess up" She blurts.

Kickback had very little love for his fellow mech, he'd been shown very little reason to care. His interaction with Earth was brief, and he'd never had time to think about the organic sentients that littered the surface like sand on a shore. Gearshift's genuine sweetness and compassion was simply breathtaking. "Do you know why I sometimes stare? Because I'm afraid I'll open my mouth and say something that will drive you away from me."

"I think the only way you could do that is by telling me you hated me." Gearshift admits, looking away shyly. This was all coming to her so easily, as if they'd both been simply waiting for each other. She glances around the bar, then back to Kickback, taking his servo and pressing it to her cheek, holding it there.

"Well," he sighs with a lazy smile, enjoying her contact, brushing his thumb gently over the surface of her cheek, "that's just not going to happen any time soon, so it looks like our paths are aligning."

Gearshift smiles and, after a small pause, turns her helm to press a chaste, soft kiss to Kickback's palm. She thinks about the kiss he gave her in the oil reservoir and blushes more, then sits up with a soft smile. "Another round on me? I have more stories if you'd like to hear them."

"You get the first round; I'll get the following. I'd love to hear everything," Kickback smiles.

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