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2016-11-28 Meanwhile, At Swerve's

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Meanwhile, At Swerve's
Date 2016/11/28
Location Lost Light: Recreation -- Swerve's
Participants Skids, Kickback, Swerve, Imager
Summary Skids gets Pie-eyed while Swerve gets moon-eyed and Kickback gets horrif-eyed over his own admission of feelings

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 the bar. Wait, rewind, no, not him, as in step back in time. Skids approaches the door to Swerves and, in the bin meant for placing weapons outside, Skids tosses his handheld gaming console in. No other way to put it. Things aren't bad... but... Well. There's the problem. There's a but. He doesn't even have a theory as to what it is or what to do. So, plan B, go forth and drink.

Swerve notices Skids and brightens up a little. He likes when Skids comes in, as the super-learner is always a good source of conversation, and doesn't seem to mind when Swerve rambles. He gets Skids his newest drink, a mid-grade drink called 'Boff's Revenge' for no other reason than it sounds gool. "Hey Skids!" He greets jovially.

An Insecticon espionage agent and an Autobot diplomatic corpman walk into a bar: Sounds like the beginning of a bad joke.

Kickback is in shortly after Skids, a little more contemplative, a little less feral. Someone's to blame for that, but he won't be forthcoming. His ticks are having a hard time dealing with the sudden reconfiguration of priority and goals, so for the moment, they've opted to just take the limiters off his mouth. Expect wit and punditry. He says nothing to Skids immediately, but just goes to the bar and has a seat, resting one elbow on the bar top, drumming his fingers, thinking.

Skids takes the drink and says, "Thanks, I needed this and the next twelve. How's it going Swerve?" Yes. Think about something, anything other than the... dunno. Skids also sees Kickback and sags with relief. "Hi there." He says, relieved. People, talking... all real, not the world of his thoughts... or lack of the same.

Skids takes the drink and says, "Thanks, I needed this and the next twelve. How's it going Swerve?" Yes. Think about something, anything other than the... dunno. Skids also sees Kickback and sags with relief. "Hi there." He says, relieved. People, talking... all real, not the world of his thoughts... or lack of the same. "Twelve? hoo boy, who broke your heart?" He teased. Usually people drank that much on the ship if they got dumped. Though in some cases it was just because they could, like Trailbreaker. "Hopefully not me, I'm innocent." He teased again.

The bartender turns to Kickback "And what can I get you Mr. way-more-relaxed-than-usual?"

"Just plain energon. I've had enough hands and feet for awhile," Kickback states. Unfortunately it's an earnest statement.

Skids chuckles, "Swerve, buddy, anytime I work that... or anything else out... you'll be the very first I know." Draining a lot from the glass he adds, "Hey! That's a good one! Like even compared to some of your others, nice one."

To Kickback Skids says, "What's causing you the lag? You're looking like I'm feeling right now. If you don't wanna talk, cool, but at least drown your sorrows with me."

Swerve grins at that, he can't help it. Skids coming to him first with something? Score. He puffs up his plating when Skids compliments his drink. "It's called 'Boff's Revenge' and I am pleased as punch you like it." As he pours Kickback his drink he goes "That must have cost you an arm and a leg." With a smirk

"Actually you'd be surprised, medical waste is free," Kickback replies easily, resting his chin on one hand, thoughtful still. "No, I'm not down, just thinking about my future. I'm pretty sure I've picked up this emotional disease everyone else has, so I thought I would be a good idea to keep stuffing myself with body parts. The more full I feel, the less inclined I am to hunt all of you down and eat you face first."

"Professional courtesy, you know, not eating your crew mates."

Skids nods, "Isn't that the truth. The future, I mean, as it's been on my mind too." He took a while to get... as straight as he has... but it doesn't fix the what then question. Oh, that's what it is, "Swerve, get another ready... it's that kinda night." Skids says as he drains his glass.

"So you've warned me, don't worry Skids I'll take good care of you." Swerve mused. "And I'm glad Kickback, that you believe in professional courtesy because I believe in not being eaten alive, so it would seem our goals line up."

"That's probably the first time an Autobot's goals have lined up with mine at all," Kickback says. "It's nice to be able to talk to Autobots without the whole 'Sideswipe hitting me with a street lamp in the face' aspect. My work never really let me spend a lot of time being near you guys. Other than interrogations. Or eating corpses as part of cleanup. That sort of thing," Kickback says, taking the drink from Swerve and sipping it.

Swerve gets Skids a drink he has affectionately named 'The Sucker Punch' Because it's a very strong drink that hits you when you think it won't. He serves the super-learner with a winning smile and turns to Kickback "oh yes, what fond memories." Swerve smirks at the insecticon.

Kickback is quiet for an awkward span of time.

"They're actually some of the better memories I have."

Skids takes a heroic draw from the Sucker Punch... nothing yet. Then another, nope, then… he finishes it. "Not bad... quite refreshing." Okay. It'll hit him. Just not yet...

Swerve smirks "Let it hit you first then I'll get you something else, okay?" He reassures Skids. Then he turns to Kickback "Well that's good for you I guess, for most of us it was The Worst."

"Oh, I don't doubt it. I ate a lot of Autobots. Decepticons, too, actually." Kickback takes another drink. "Now that I think about it, I think they just took my status as 'Disposable' and removed the 'b' and 'e'." Another drink. Sssiiiiip.

"I don't think you get it, though, I wasn't saying it made me happy, I'm saying the rest of my life has been pretty miserable. Do you have an idea what it's like being forged an /Insecticon/? I have to -look up- just to see pavement in the social heirarchy. I've been a slave as long as I can remember, and being a Decepticon didn't make it any better. How's -that- for irony? All of that war and suffering and death ostensibly to create an equal and just society, but all it did was hammer into the foot soldiers an inability to think and act for themselves. Learned helplessness. Voluntary chains. All in the name of equality and justice. Ha!" He finishes his drink in one shot.

Yeah. Never going to ever get those memories back. Skids blinks then blinks again. What's that sound? Like something's falling from a great height. Hmm. "I can't speak for the past. It'd be prepos- un- I'd be disrespecting all that happened then. You... wow. Y'gotta a change for chance. Wait. That's wrong. A chance to make a change. Trans... err... rise above the fate handed to you. Make yer own way. S'rry, s'mth'n hit my 'dio 'cessor." Not the high grade. Honest.

Swerve didn't really feel bad, it was one of his few faults really. "I guess it's all behind us now, right?" He says, rather pointedly, as Skids starts to slur. "You okay Skids?" He definitely makes sure to give Skids a cube of energon to help balance that high grade dose.

"Not really. I don't know what freedom is, I never had it. It's like turning out a domesticated animal into the wild to go 'be free'. The animal just dies a senseless, cruel death. Starvation, injury, or most often, eaten," Kickback says. There's just no mental filter with him today. He says what he's thinking, no ragrets (not even a letter). "I don't know how to go forward. All I know is war crimes. That's not helpful in peace time." Kickback glances over at Skids. "Go past your tolerance, there? I won't take advantage of you then. This time."

Skids laughs out loud. It's a rousing happy sound. Okay. Solves nothing but the wossisname isn't outta the thing the sizable organic hasn't started her final movement and his metaphorical centers are happily shorted out. He laughs again then says, "Nah, S'not blasted. Just..." he see saws his hand side to side like a seesaw "... Nichely drunk. Stops the thing doing too much of the thing. S'e'games y'see!" Skids explains-ish. "Done a charidy tourney no so long ago. People wanted to talk to me. Treated me like a big deal... blew my circuits. I mean... I'm me. N'a'big deal... jus' a me. Bu' got me thinkin'. Got all that super potential mega fun time yeah. Wait, what? Yeah. Got that but... what 'm I don' with it?"

He pauses and looks for the next drink in case he needs a booster, "'s not a big problem. Makes it worse. Got n'right to complain 'bout things. But doesn't stop the head..." He flaps his hand at his head in a chatting too much mime, "... whine moan whine 'bout it. Needed a break. So. Stop the old ball 'n' brain forabit... then back to it." Another happy laugh and adds to Kickback, "You're funny. 's cool." Now that next drink. Were is it?

Swerve's optics flicker in a blink. Alright well it's clear that Skids isn't dying so. "Are you ready? I call this one a Trailbreaker because it's really only meant for him."

Kickback smiles. Skids is so incredibly drunk. "A couple of centuries ago, I would have seen how far I could get with you in a back alley," he replies cheerfully to Skids. "Just because I could." Pointing a finger skyward, he adds, "But not now. No, now I actually have someone who makes me want to be good. Like, Autobot good. Don't tell Soundwave I said that. Wait. He probably already heard me. Scrap."

Skids snorts, and tries to grab one of the glasses that isn't there. "Nah-nahnahnah. 'see Soundbalster can't tune in to shortwave stations from long long ago in a galaxy far far away..." The theory's there. Just most of the science isn't.

"'sides, I'm twice your size, ten times your strength and have enough bang to gie 'e big un a run for its 'nix. So, smoothie, you couldnae hannle 's." Skids chuckles at Kickback. No way did he hit either of the double meanings. It's fun to fail at things for a change. "Raising his glas he says, "To Swerve! The bar! And the floor once I had one too many and it rises up to meet me." Fortunately, or unfortunately depending this time Skids finds the real glass and downs it in one.

Swerve puffs up a bit defensively at Kickback, feeling slightly protective of Skids now "I think you've definitely had enough for a bit, Skids." He gives him another cube of regular energon, then moves to clean some glasses. "Meanwhile, Kickback, pray tell who has turned you to thinking the autobots are good now?" He jabs at Kickback's earlier comments, and also takes the chance to raz the insecticon playfully while attempting to get some gossip out of him.

Kickback pouts at Skids and folds his arms. "Oh now you're just insulting me," he states, mock-offended. "Remember Senator Apexus? Had to use the extra tall door just to get into the Council chambers? He couldn't last halfway into the night. Ten rounds and I was still ready to dance." YES, ABSOLUTELY NO MENTAL FILTERS LEFT HERE. Enjoy your gossip, Swerve. Or your brain bleach. "Oh wait, you can't remember him, can you... well, suffice it to say you are not outside the range of my capability. So there." Huff.

The bug is still smiling though, amused, as he pushes his empty glass towards Swerve. "As for why I think Autobots are good? Two Words: No DJD. That should say it all."

Skids chuckles again, "Yeah, well, I don' need my memory or the oulander 'bility to know that you're false flir'n me. A lil' robo birdy tol' me. one o' 'ns that orbit you whenever you're round a cer'ain somebuddy." He smiles brightly and offers a hand to shake, "I c'n take a wee bittae banter wie 'e best ae em though. 'n that you are." Looking at his empty glass he says, "Swerve another for Kicky here. On me. And.. if you see mine... tell me."

Swerve serves them both energon with a smirk. "Skids you've definitely had enough high grade for a bit." He leans on the bar towards the outlier with a grin on his faceplates that says Skids could murder someone in front of him and he'd be okay with it. That's just Swerve though, and he figures it's harmless as long as he's not more forward about it. He glances at Kickback "I've seen you in here with Waspinator and that femme, what's her name. Gearstrip? Nah that's the other blue one." Swerve shakes his helm. Too many people with the same paintjob and similar names.

"False flirting? No, I'm just false-insulted. My pride is a little wounded, though, Skids. I'm always judged by my altmode and appearance. But I'm not insulted enough to do anything but push back at you verbally until you finally knuckle under." He pauses. "Oh hell I don't have ANY guile today. I'm just saying whatever comes to mind!" He almost seems panicked about this.

And then Swerve speaks up. Kickback's mouth opens. Truth falls out. Horrible, revealing truth. "Waspinator is a precious semi-slow mech that I love like a little brother and worry about constantly, because on the grand scale of things he's got more value than a million of me put together, and I regret not being strong enough to protect him. Also that's Gearshift<i/> and I really want her to be my endura because I am totally in love with her and--" He slaps his hands over his mouth.

Skids withdraws his offered hand and stands, after a deep vent or two he says to Kickback, "I was kidding on with you. I can see how greatly that has offended you. As I'll soon remove that offense along with my presense I'll say this. I don't see those convictions and conceptions as they were lost with my memory."

"I make no secret of that happening and how, truly, it was a blessing. It may be something you see in yourself... but not something I see in you. I am sorry for coming across different to that which I intended. Maybe, another time, I'll be able to correct that error. Until then... good bye for now." He turns to the bar, "Swerve! Thanks for the drink."

Skids then turns to face the door. He's not took a step forward yet as he's shaking his head. Some thoughts are too sobering too quick. Damn it. The shattered silence, that moment of peace... all too fleeting.

Swerve calls to him "Skids! Come on we were just getting started!" He pats the bar quickly, desperately hoping to call Skids back to the stool. "We still have to tease Kickback for having feelings!" Which Swerve does, "Gearshift and Kickback sitting in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g" He grins wide, making it apparent that this is playful teasing, nothing more, and makes kissy noises at the insecticon.

"Aww, don't leave, Skids. I'm really enjoying talking to you, and not many people on this ship will!" Kickback blurts out. He's fine with saying that. Somehow... maybe saying the truth isn't as hard as he thought. Maybe he just needed a reason not to constantly live in deception.

Swerve gets his attention, however, with the sing-songy tone and the playground taunting. "Damn straight. More than kissing if I have anything to say about it." He's completely deadpan as he says it, staring straight into Swerve's optics.

Skids... well he can't stop. He never started. Guy's not here and can still screw with him. Skids almost convinced himself it was one of those problems that could be solved by his leaving the room. Okay, he can be better than that. He takes a step back towards the bar and sits down on the stool. He takes a sip on his drink and looks to them in turn, "Sitting down, back at the table, being good." He says. Still thinking's knocked some of the over out of his charge.

Swerve seems to give a sigh of relief as he serves Skids some more high grade. Anything to keep him in the bar still. He responds to Kickback with "well if only all of us were so lucky, mm?" He smirks, but it's a little hollow now. "Didn't realize you were the kiss and tell type either."

"Normally I'm not, but I think I'm infected with whatever else is going through the crew. Normally I like concealing my motives under so many layers I sometimes forget what they originally were," Kickback replies, looking away now. "I think it's taken away my ability to lie. Which was something I was really, really good at. I suppose it's pathetic, but there you go." He looks at Skids now. "You were really good at what you did. You, at least, had a past to be proud of. I don't blame you for wanting to forget. If that's what happened, anyways. We have that bastard mnemnosurgeon on board, so forgetting should be as easy as a needle in the back of your head."

Taking more of a measured sip from this glass Skids then thinks harder at the mention of, presumably, Chromedome. "I don't know. I've got a liars version of events. No way to know if what I was told is another lie. Only thing I consider is that I may see if they can be wiped further. Put beyond recovery. It happened for a reason and, so far, looks like there's nothing to miss there." He takes another sip from the drink. Great. Now he's thinking about that again. He supposes that's the way of things though. It's not like the answer to everything's going to call him out of the ether.

Swerve tries to steer the conversation in another direction "So how about those Knights of Cybertron? More like Ripley's believe-it-or-not amirite?" He wishes Pipes were here, Pipes knows about Earth stuff too.

"Speaking from a Decepticon Secret Service point of view, if you're wiped, you don't want to remember. Remembering will probably trigger some primusdamn catastrophe that will kill you and everyone you love and everyone within a twenty light year radius regardless of their affection for or indifference to you," Kickback says. Might as well roll with the truth no matter how much it burns.

Back to Swerve, "We're chasing mythology on a fool's errand while we all slowly go mad or eventually turn on each other. I'm content with that because when I signed up, it was better than being subject to Prowl."

It doesn't burn. In fact, Skids says so, "Exactly. Why, at most, I'd let someone make sure they're really erased. You know, make sure nothing can take them out of the recycle bin, so to speak. I'm done with that." Skids then smiles. He is. Huh. Cool. He takes a drink then says, "So Swerve, you don't think we'll ever find the Knights? What do you think'll happen?" Skids finds his conversational skills coming back a little.

Swerve brightens a little. "I think we'll open a hole in the space-time continuum. Or they'll tell us the journey was the friends we made along the way." The bartender smirks "And hey, Kickback, pull it back a little. I liked it more when you were bashfully word-vomiting about how much you love your friends."

"I can't help it if I'm composed of pain and suffering," Kickback complains, folding his arms over his chest. "That's pretty standard fare for a Decepticon." He thinks a moment and adds, "Or anyone on this ship really. Have you noticed how many of us are pretty much walking character flaws and tragic pasts?"

"But fine, I'll try to be happy. Also I think I only have two friends. Well, maybe a partial relative and a friend I'd like to make more than a friend."

Skids brightens and says jokingly to Kickback, "Even though the little ray of sunshine thing you do all the the time is sometime such a happy overload..." then he continues more seriously, "I consider you a friend. One determined to self-deprecate all the time but I've done that before, a lot, myself. So, stop kicking yourself, take some time to take it easier on yourself and the rest'll work itself out." He looks back to Swerve and says, making an odd request, "Got a match?"

Swerve's visor flickers curiously "Yea but I have to ask why?" He really doesn't want his bar to go up in flames, not one bit. Not even for a visual metaphor from Skids.

Kickback has no clue why there's a match involved, but... someone actually considers him a friend. That's kind of shocking. Kind of new. He's silent as he thinks on it.

Skids says "It's..." then a light goes off on his forearm. "... a moot point. I gotta go. Schedule must've changed again. It happens. Take it easy Swerve." Skids looks to Kickback and says, "And you. Really, take it easy on yourself. It isn't easy. I'll see you about though. 'kay?" Skids stands and decides to go high tech. Taking the pack of cygars he bought after Sterling introduce him to them, Skids flips down his fingertool and lighting one, taking a draw... and coughing. He's still learning there. Working on getting the right draw out of the 'gar he leaves the bar.

Swerve nods and watches Skids leave, a bit transfixed on the superlearner. He shakes his helm and glances to Kickback "So what can I get ya? anything harder than energon this time?"

The door to the bar is forcefully opened suddenly, and there in the doorway is the hulking Imager...and she does NOT look pleased. Or does she? She wears a perpetual frown, this war-weary Logistics flunky. Without much in the way of words, she lets her heavy booted feet make her presence known, her feet clanking loudly as she turns to her side, towards the spare tables on the left half of the bar...and starts moving them aside with little to no regard, and little to no justification. She pretty much hip-bumps one of the tables over, making a loud scraping sound as she moves. SCKKKKKKKKEEEEEEEEEEEE. SCKKKKKKKKKKKEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

He was about to say something, when someone familiar comes into the bar, leaving a trail of chair-based devastation in her wake. He turns partially to see who it is, and nods. "Hello Imager. You look like you'd really like to kill something. I'd like to suggest Chromedome." To Swerve: "Yes, I think I would like something harder to drink, and it will be really stupid of me to do it."

Swerve has a drink ready for Imager already, and pours Kickback something mild, a 'Beachcomber' to get him on a nice, smooth buzz. He's a little wary of the new crowd.

Imager grumbles, "Chromey Needlehands." She barely even knew the mech, but Kickback brought him up, so he needed some vitriol spewed his way. "Get that..." She hip bumps another table, knocking it over. "Outta here." She then just...sets herself in that spot. "I know that this all was last month, but I don't give a shift. Imma play, and YOU." She points out towards the crowd of two, "are going to like it."

She tilts her head, a few cogs in her neck clickclack out of place. She then hoists her hand over her head towards her back and withdraws her shield. It is a massive tower shield, easily enough to cover most mechs of average size. A thick, plated shield that has served her well in her eons of life and service to the Autobot cause. Might still have some of Razorclaw's energon on it too from their numerous scraps...

She intakes a breath, and then she shifts her hand's grip on it, and the shield transforms, shifting and folding, into a....vioello?

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