2017-03-12 Sempai Notices Brigade

From Transformers: Lost and Found

2017-03-12 Sempai Notices Brigade
Date 2017/03/12
Location Lost Light: Recreation -- Swerve's
Participants Brigade, Fortress Maximus
Summary Brigade meets one of his heroes. Awkwardness between enormous tanks with poor social skills ensues.

ften 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.

Brigade is slumped over in one of the booths, his massive frame taking up one who side of the table. The tabletop is littered with the remnants of a hard night of drinking, glasses tipped over and dried engex spilled across the surface. The tank twitches, his vocoder giving a burst of static in his recharge. He has likely been here for most of the night, but he's enough of a regular that no one has tried to stir Brigade from his recharge.

What others won't do, however, his internal chronometer will. It pings him awake with a warning that his shift begins in just a few hours. The tank grunts, crimson optics onlining with reluctance. He makes out a bleary shape sitting at the bar not far away, the only other person in the bar at this desolate hour. "Hey," he calls out, voice still hoarse with static. "Can I borrow your stool? I left my sword at the door and I won't get far without it."

That bleary shape is Fortress Maximus, who just just settled in for a drink himself. As usual, he's spending more time staring into it than actually drinking it, which is probably for the best-despite his massive size and strength, Enjex tends to go straight to his head. Always had. He likes to think it's a joke Primus is playing on him.

At first he overlooks the sleeping figure, mentally assuming it's Trailcutter. There's at least a 60 percent chance a larger mech slumped at the bar is Trailcutter. It's only when the poor drunk speaks that Max really looks up and realizes it's someone he hasn't seen before, another tank.

"My...barstool?" That's an unusual request, but Max complies, standing up and pushing his stool over next to Brigade, which brings him in a little closer to view. "Does that help?"

<FS3> Brigade rolls Body+body: Success. (7 5)

Brigade may be a lot of things: loud and obnoxious at the top of the list, but he does not shirk hard work. Even after a hard marathon of drinking there is no way that he is going to miss his shift. Gritting his dentals, the tank slides out from his booth and reaches out to steady himself on the stool. He sways uncertainly, more a result of his naturally precarious balance than his crazy night, before finally onlining his FIM chip. The bleary shapes around him finally begin to look more concrete.

"Thanks. I had to leave my ca-" he trails off when it finally clicks who he's talking to.

His mouth hangs open for a moment and Brigade has to scramble to find words. "... You're Fruitloop Multipluck! Uh, I mean... no, I mean Fortress Maximus. Frag."

Brigade does the only thing a mecha when faced with an unexpected celebrity. Stand there and cuss. "Slag." A pause. "Rusty Crankshaft blessed by Primus, you're Fortress Maximus!"

Max watches Brigade with a little bit of concern. He's not really one to reach out to others nowadays, mainly because reaching out requires social interaction. But he doesn't want this poor Autobot to fall on his face in front of him. "You got it alright?" He's about to hold out a hand in case Brigade needs it, when the other tank...recognizes him.

Well, before 'Fruitloop Multipack' earns a confused squint.

This his optics widen. This is the first time someone's reacted to him on the ship like THAT, at least not for a while. "....Yes?" He isn't sure what else to say.

Brigade is getting progressively louder without realizing it, something that happens when the tank gets excited. "I've read all about your service!" he shouts. The tank is almost trembling with excitement. He has, of course, seen Fortress Maximus from a distance. As the combat trainer on board he at least brushes elbows with most of the mecha who have been or are in the combat division. But there's a big difference between planning drills and finding time to talk.

"I've always wanted to tell you that your assault o- ooooh, slag."

Then it hits him like a ton of bricks that he's making a fool of himself. Taking a deep ex-vent, the tank tries to still his trembling frame and stand tall. See? He's a totally respectable war veteran just like Maximus. They could be equals, even! Maybe?

He tries to find a new topic in order to distract from his own outburst. "Uh, I'm fine. I just had to leave my sword at the door because it's also a cane. Wait, no. I had to leave my cane at the door because it's also a sword. And you know the rules. So, uh, there's that."

Fortress Maximus is being fanboyed.

This used to happen all the time, younger mechs learning about his epic killcount in Simanzi and his battle escapades in subsequent famous fights, older mechs praising the relatively young Autobot as a rising star of the war. It maaay have gone to his head a few times in the past. Even now he can't help but feel a little swell in his spark at the combat trainer's nervous enthusiasm. Why is this so surprising now?

Because everyone else knows you're a broken has-been, Max's inner voice reminds him. Right.

Still, he really can't hide a smile crossing his face. He holds up his hands. "It's fine, it's fine! I'm happy to talk about war stories once I get some Enjex in me, believe me." Yeah, that drink is still mostly untouched. "You're the combat trainer, right? Brigade?" He's in the practice rooms all the time, but hasn't had a chance to introduce himself.

No, he just hasn't...had the mental energy to introduce himself, really.

<FS3> Brigade rolls Body+body: Failure. (1 5)

Brigade looks as if he's been mortally wounded. "... War stories?" he echoes, voice hollow and quiet. He would love nothing more, but at the same time his chronometer is repeatedly reminding him that it's time to begin the painful process of getting ready for work. "Honestly, I'd love to. And we'll have to sometime. I'm sure you've got some good ones," Brigade mutters. The next words are almost too hard to say!

Brigade has done things more difficult, though, and he can manage it. The tank hesitates. No, this is absolutely the worst thing he's ever had to do. Absolute worst. He cannot believe he's even saying it. "But I can't now. I'll be on duty soon," he finally says.

Leaning heavily on the barstool, an object at the incorrect height to be all that useful as a makeshift cane, the tank begins to shuffle his way towards where his cane is stored. Halfway there, though, the strain of having to shuffle along with the damned stool catches up with him. Brigade decides to take a small break. He thunks down on top of it with a grunt, causing the stool to groan under his weight.

<FS3> Fortress_Maximus rolls Body+body: Failure. (5 6 6 6 2 5 1 1)

Max can't help but wonder if Brigade is really in any shape to be heading to work after all that drinking, but it isn't exactly his business. And it isn't as if he's never reported for duty hungover before, though that was more common in the aforementioned 'being a hero was going to his head' days. "Ah, right," he says instead, hesitating. "I wouldn't want to keep you."

Then Brigade has to take a break, and it's a little hard to watch. Without really thinking about it much, Max tries to hold out a hand to help balance him.

And stumbles under Brigade's weight. Which is something that DOES NOT HAPPEN VERY OFTEN. "Sorry, I just thought you needed-"

<FS3> Brigade rolls Body+body: Failure. (6 2)

Brigade spends 1 luck points on Overriding a bad body roll..

<FS3> Brigade rolls Body+body: Failure. (4 2)

Brigade spends 1 luck points on Trying to override a bad body roll one more time.. <FS3> Brigade rolls Body+body: Failure. (3 6)

Brigade may admire Fortress Maximus greatly, but another thing that does not change about the tank is his stubborn streak. When he sees the hand reaching out to steady him, out of instinct he reaches out to slap it away. "You thought I needed what?" the tank growls, engine revving and optics flashing in challenge. He dares the other mecha to finish that thought. "I'm fine. The only thing I need is another drink."

The tank considers getting back up and shuffling around Maximus to make a point, but he decides against it. He still needs another moment or two until he's ready to continue on his haphazard journey across the bar. There are other ways to make a point, though. It looks like Maximus's drink is just barely in reach on the bartop... Leaning over, he grabs it and stares Maximus straight in the faceplates before downing it in one swallow. He slams the glass down on the table with a loud clang. "Fine."

... Wait, did he just do that to Maximus? "Slag, I'll buy you another later."

<FS3> Fortress_Maximus rolls Socializing: Success. (5 4 1 8)

Fort Max withdraws the hand rapidly, biolights flashing in shock and stress. He backs up, even as Brigade steals his drink.

Dammit, he needed that drink! He was scheduled for at least another hour of staring into it and working through his thoughts before he got to drowning them. His hands briefly ball into fists, eyes narrowing...and then he takes a deep breath. Remember, Brigade was just being nice a few moments ago. Just wanted to hear your war stories for once, actually seems to see you as a hero or something. It's like Brigade sees the old Max, instead of looking at him with fear or pity...

Pity. Oh, of course. Max is an idiot. He covers his face with one hand. "Frag, um, I'm sorry. I meant no offense, really. I should let you go..." He's still flashing a little from stress. No, make it up to him. Socialize, Max. "We can have that drink later, after your shift."

<FS3> Brigade rolls Mind+mind: Good Success. (3 4 2 8 4 6 2 7)

Brigade is stuck between horror and annoyance, the two emotions clawing at his brain module in equal measure. But in the end he simply cannot stand the idea of someone he so thoroughly admires looking at him like that. He's capable. He'll prove it. Past words, the tank hauls himself back to his pedes. Pushing aside his soreness and discomfort through sheer determination, Brigade continues his long trek across the bar. Scraaaaaaaaaaaaape. The barstool sends up a spray of sparks as he drags it across the floor.

The tank heaves a sigh of relief when he finally reaches the weapon's bin, reaching in and retrieving his cane with trembling digits. This will make things a whole lot easier. "Yeah, yeah. We can talk about it after my shift," Brigade mutters back, almost hoping the other doesn't hear him.

Well, of course he's mad, Fortress Maximus thinks. This is one of the reasons Max makes himself so scarce all the time. So people would just see him from a distance, and not notice when he zoned out or...worse. Max just embarassed his fan. Way to go. Didn't he used to have social skills once, or was he just so confident he didn't notice when he was being an ass?

"Right, right then..." He retreats quietly back to the bar, ordering another drink to stare into for a while.

Okay, this one he might drink a little faster than that.

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