2017-05-04 Unwelcome Wagon

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Unwelcome Wagon
Date 2017/05/04
Location Lost Light - Recreation -- Observation Deck
Participants Bulkhead, Blast Off, Chimera, Firestar, Grotusque, Hound, Lieutenant, Lockjaw, Ravage, Tailgate
NPCs Ayana Jones, Marissa Fairborne, Thundercracker
Plot Rebirth of Unicron
Scene GM Mox, Koi, Ems
Summary The Lost Light arrives in the vicinity of Earth, and the locals aren't happy about it.

A hexagonal room that mimics the shape of the bridge two decks above, the Observation Deck likewise has two rows of windows that look out into the vast dark of space. Seating arranged casually throughout the room can be retracted into the deck or rearranged into rows for solemn ceremonies. If there's a big event, it's going to be held here.

Those truly big black rectangular things are pretty much all that's been on Lockjaw's mind these days, particularly the one that ravaged her homeworld. The closer the Lost Light got to their destination, the more time she's been spending on the observation deck, pacing in frustration, so her presence here isn't particularly unusual. Not to mention that she's eager to be involved in anything remotely related to the monolith (and, in her hopes, its eventual distruction). Even now, she stands at the windows, legs spread apart, arms folded over her chest as she glares outwards.

It would be a complete lie to say that she isn't even the least interested in this delegation. Having spent all her life on Eukaris, her exposure to alien life forms, let alone sentient organics, has been quite limited. She's quite curious about these 'hue-mans'.

Firestar is on diplomatic relations duty again, which she is surprised at considering what a mess of it she made last time. Still, lesson learned. She'll try not to be so outspoken with her criticism and dismissal this time. Keyword: try. She's actually trying to look respectable, flame toned down to a gentle simmer and standing up straight with her arms folded behind her back. The attempt backfires somewhat by the way she is shifting restlessly from foot to foot and casting hopeful looks at the snacks, but an effort is better than none.

She also tries not to let it show how uncomfortable she is with the gathering company, but some things are more successful than others.

This is not how Hound pictured a return to Earth happening. If he's honest, after their last departure, he didn't picture any return happening, not so soon in the memory of the human race. Still, he thought that if he returned, it would be a trip for fun, not for work. For a chance to explore the wilds of Earth that he could not see while the war still raged. Instead, this return reflects his first arrival on Earth-- an officer trying to keep a ship together, rushing to the planet because of a rather dire situation. At least this time there's been no Sideswipe questioning him at every turn...

Between rank and his own interest in organics, Hound was planning on attending this reception the moment he learned it was going to be held, and now he's here, standing by one of the tables that has the meager human refreshments. For once, Hound looks neatened up, with no dirt to be seen even on the white parts of his armor, which has clearly seen a visit to the body shop recently.

"Grotusque the Diplomat. Sure, I can do that. I am a robot of many hats. Or, well, really just one." The Monsterbot taps the side of his head. "This doesn't come off. Anyway! What kinda reception should we expect here? From the squi-the humans. I mean, how interested are they gonna be to hear 'oh hey those big sticks hanging in your orbit might be from one of our guys, we gotta fix that?'"

He's speaking aloud to no one in particular, mostly because talking a lot is how he steadies a mind that's always running, always analyzing everything around him. "I hope they brought their own teeny tiny chairs and stuff."

Chimera has been restless ever since they reached the lagrange point. She knew they were following one monolith, but to see two now occupying the same space before them... No one had told her there was another, and it was just as troubling to learn that it was from Eukaris.

"..Are you positive these humans will agree to aid us? Or even allow us use of their territory?" Her voice lacks direction, pointed to the room as a whole for anyone to answer as she stands at one of the surrounding windows, staring intently into the blackness of space where the monoliths orbit in the distance.

Politics haven't been on Bulkhead's mind for several months now, not since he's started getting back into the engineering game. It's been nice, to not think about that sort of stuff, to focus more on working and Wheeljack and surviving the antics of the Lost Light's crew. And yet he's here anyway, on the observation deck, ready to meet the human delegation. Mostly because Earth is so close and he's been restless the nearer they got. Partially because these monoliths are serious business, and he wants to know what he can do to help. If he's leaving Miko on Earth with such a threat hanging over the planet, he wants to be upfront and center in helping to save humanity.

Having planted himself off to the side of the room, near the Cybertronian refreshments, Bulkhead glances between Grotusque and Chimera, the only two speaking currently. "That's a bit up in the air, at the moment," is given in response to Chimera, along with one great shoulder rising in a shrug. He shuffles in her direction but not too close, answering without committing to a conversation in case someone else had a better reply. "We didn't exactly part on good terms with 'em." Understatement.

Should Lieutenant be doing something? Yes. What is he doing? Sitting and sewing while he waits for the hue- no- humanos... humans. Yes, those that a majority have holos for this strange planet. He's only here to study them, not quite handle diplomacy with them, especially given the history he's been reading up on. "Perhaps not." the avian answers Chimera although he is not directly speaking to her. Still focused on his quilt to give her a glance or proper answer. "Likely they still are upset with us for the war that damaged their planet. As it takes us time to rebuild Cybertron it takes them a much longer time since they seem to be a primitive race."

When it comes to things like interplanetary diplomacy, Tailgate likes to think he's gotten better at it. Compared to the first times, anyway. He's waiting and recalling the civil war he managed to start. Okay, so, maybe it can't go worse than that? It's only the expectations of anyone who has ever been to Earth, right? No pressure!

At least it helps that he knows he is more of an acceptable scale. It's hard to help much when you're too small or too big. Tailgate paces from one end of the space to the other, not entirely aware he's doing it. The minibot is going over what to say in his head, but nothing ever seems to sound right. He even gives one or two of the others odd looks for being too relaxed. At a time like this??

Two humans, still in their (adorable) space suits complete with sealed helmets, walk with forced confidence into the observation deck. One carries herself as the leader, although the other is by no means timid in comparison. Nevertheless, both of them look around the vast chamber - everything on this ship is so overwhelmingly gigantic, and not just the threatening alien robots. The leader-ish one speaks first, assuming a military-style ready stance with hands clasped behind her back ... and clearing her throat awkwardly. "I am Marissa Faireborn of Earth Defense Command. Who's in charge here?" She doesn't appear even remotely interested in refreshments.

"Earth," Hound says, looking in the direction of both Chimera and Grotusque, "has plenty of history with us, but hopefully they'll want these things dealt with without damage just as much as we do." 'History,' of course, is an understatement, but there's not enough time to explain everything that happened here with Decepticons and Autobots to the large population of neutrals and colonists filling the ship. Then again, maybe it's for the best. Without history, these mechs can't bring in old grudges to sour things with their human visitors. Still, the lack of Decepticons is both telling, and reassuring. He can only hope that the humans who are brought are similarly willing to leave their most radical cases behind.

"Earth," Hound says, looking in the direction of both Chimera and Grotusque, "has plenty of history with us, but hopefully they'll want these things dealt with without damage just as much as we do." 'History,' of course, is an understatement, but there's not enough time to explain everything that happened here with Decepticons and Autobots to the large population of neutrals and colonists filling the ship. Then again, maybe it's for the best. Without history, these mechs can't bring in old grudges to sour things with their human visitors. Still, the lack of Decepticons is both telling, and reassuring. He can only hope that the humans who are brought are similarly willing to leave their most radical cases behind.

When the humans approach, Hound goes down on one knee, rather than continue to tower over them. "Thank you for coming, Marissa Faireborn," he says, with a friendly smile. "My designation is Hound, I'm the Second-in-Command of the Lost Light. We also have Tailgate, who's Chief of Security, and other members of the crew here."

The sound of small footsteps draws Lockjaw's attention from the window, prompting her to turn around to see...nothing. It takes her another moment to reorienteer herself to look down, at which point she give out a soft grunt of surprise. The enormous Eukarian steps towards the delegation, bending down so as to get a better look at them "They're so...small!"

Lieutenant figured he'll look up from his work when the humans enter. He, however, was not expecting them to have such little weight! They make Skystalker seem loud in his strides. The avian watches them, curious of their attire. He's been busy catching up on what they did wrong on Earth in between his work and new habit, that he hasn't really had time to look into them as a species. Lockjaw's right, they are small. Much smaller than imagined. Since he's only here to observe though, he returns to his growing quilt while listening in and looking up at the crew's up close admiration of these new aliens.

"Ah, yeah, I heard things went a little hairy last time..." Grotusque sounds the slightest bit...sheepish? Almost as if he was there in one of the 'hairy' situations himself. Just don't mention Fallon, maybe. At least this time he's encountering humans who aren't piloting the cloned body of some poor soul they've got captive. They really //are// teeny tiny outside of Headmaster suits.

He clears his throat and at least manages to squat a bit. "Uh, hey! Name's Grotusque. We gotcha water."

<FS3> Firestar rolls Theatrics: Great Success. (8 3 8 4 1 2 8 6 8 8 5)

Not long after the human, enters a mech not seen for a while. Thundercracker strides and then awkwardly, stop-shuffles as the two humans to a stop to avoid stepping on them. They're so small and he's not- walking with them takes skill you know. He doesn't look all that interested in his fellow Cybertronians, if not a little suspicious himself. What a strange bunch they got gathered here... Don't really recognize any of them. He glances out the window at the monoliths and around and- "Oh, they have snacks," he says, wings perking up. Stepping over Marissa and Ayana, he heads to the refreshments. He flew them all the way out here, and he'll have to fly them all the way back. He deserves some nibbles.

"You what now?" She whirls on Lieutenant when he speaks next. "YOU WHAT NOW?!" She has to physically restrain herself from slapping her palm against forehead. Of course. Cybertronians go around screwing everything up with their freakin' war, and now we're the ones who have to deal with the consequences, even though I've never stepped foot on Cybertron in my entire functioning! She forces a smile onto her face, and it is only through her tremendous acting abilities that it doesn't physically look pained.

"Suuure wish I'd been briefed on this beforehand..." she laughs lightly, but for a moment there is murder in her optics. It swiftly passes when the humans arrive though, and she straightens quickly--which may not have been the best idea, she realizes belatedly, as she is now staring roughly 5 meters over their heads. Whoops.

Their first question stumps her outright. Who is in charge? She vaguely remembers a green guy on the command staff, but which one was it...? She scans the room briefly. Ugh, why are there so many green guys in here?! She squints at the tall one with the wings, but after a moment she shakes her helm. That's just the nerd. Moving on...

Oh thank the Mistress, he's taken the initiative and stepped forward. She slumps in relief when Hound annouces himself. Now no more hard questions, you weird little fleshlumps!

The human standing behind Faireborn is observing the area with careful consideration. She stares at everyone in the room individually before her focus snaps to the refreshments as Thundercracker walks over. Is there anything good- There is a long beat before Ayana Jones says, "Who's the genius who put out water but not air to breathe??" Lockjaw gets a fearless but dry glare for the small comment.

Lieutenant assumed that when he sensed a seeker it was Skywarp, and stabs his finger joint with the needle when Thundercracker steps in! Humans, interesting, but "You are supposed to be dead?" he can't help but comment on the rather obvious! Unless Ravage got something wrong in the history they wrote on the war. Humans do not possess the technology to revive Cybertronians. Or maybe they do after the apparent, 'head masters' thing with Scorpinok and what not. Who really knows anymore.

Chimera knows the library well, thank you very much! As for the moment, she just offers a soft grumble at these answers. She doesn't enjoy slim odds, exciting at they may be to challenge. "Let us hope they send someone reasonable." Before the door slides open her ears swivel back, hearing a sparkbeat, but when she turns to see who it is her focus is completely on the two small humans that walk in. "How terribly small indeed.." She agrees with Lockjaw, her optics taking on a brighter glint while stepping a bit closer. Not right up to them, but enough to observe. Never has she encountered aliens this tiny. And being the largest on the ship, they only just about reach her ankles.

'Hairy' - another understatement. Bulkhead doesn't comment on Grotusque's statement, though. Easiest way to ruin what is currently a polite conversation? Bring up how much Cybertron's war screwed with Earth.

Which, of course, is what Lieutenant proceeds to do almost immediately after the thought passes through Bulk's processor. He hides his wince relatively well, opens his mouth to say something, and abruptly closes it when a fiery mech he's never seen before whirls on the avian. Yup, something else he's going to stay out of for now. He'll just stand and wait for....

And there they are. Bulkhead shifts down to his knees when Hound does, for the same reason, giving Lockjaw a worried glance. Giant beastformer staring at humans like they're sideshow attractions, probably not the best thing to do when they already view Cybertronians (and anyone related to them) so poorly. He's distracted again, for a different reason, and stands without thinking when -

"Thundercracker?" Bulkhead is incredulous, watching the Seeker approach the energon refreshments. "Wait - what are you doing with a human delegation?" Because, yeah, what Lieutenant said, the whole 'Thundercracker died' thing.

The last member of the delegation gets a surprised look from Lokckaw - she was under the impression that this was a planet of organic creatures, not Cybertronians, but she gets over it soon, turning her attention back to the hue-mans. The second human's look goes mostly unnoticed, the Eukarian being much too curious to care. She continues to peer at them, leaning in a bit more as she studies them "What would be the point of air? Do hue-mans fly?"

Blast Off is here, too, but has remained fairly quiet so far. He's leaning against a wall in some dark(ish) corner, voilet optics mostly lingering on the human delegation with an air of distaste. Ewww, organics. It feels so weird to act friendly with them, given that the last time he was here on (or orbiting) Earth he was raining destruction down upon them from the cusp of the atmosphere.

Faireborn focuses in relatively confidently on the proferred leaders in Hound and Tailgate. She notably doesn't so much as flinch as her ride steps over her in search of snackage, but the looming Lockjaw and Chimera do earn a concerned glance. "I'll cut right to the point, Hound. Would you tell me why you've shown up in Earth's vicinity with those big black bricks of yours? You've already destroyed all of our assets here, but I warn you that we're prepared to defend ourselves if you decide to return planetside."

More people I don't know. Super, this is going super. Firestar has to restrain a weary sigh. It's getting harder to maintain her smile, especially with at least two of their crew openly gawking at the squi--the humans. For the sake of diplomacy she bites back her distaste and approaches the weirdos.

"Now now, let's not interfere with diplomatic relations. These two have come a long way to talk." Not really, as their planet is right there, but if they do fly as Lockjaw suggests it can't be very fast on their stubby little limbs. "Just sit tight and let the commanders handle this."

Grotusque snorts at Ayana. "Water and air too? What kinda fancy operation you think we're running here? You guys maybe want coupons for an oil bath while you're at it, touch up your pai-um."

In a rare moment, the Monsterbot is actually rendered speechless as he looks past Marissa and Ayana to the Cybertronian behind them. "Seeker. You, uh. Got a seeker with you. Interesting! Did not expect that." That's an understatement. He straightens up, giving the humans a somewhat more careful look. Are they brainwashing Cybertronians or something? Why else would one willingly stay on Earth? With humans?

Tailgate, when the time comes, can't help but put himself behind Hound and in the other mech's wings, as if standing in his shadow might make this just a little less hard. Maybe a little. He straightens out as the humans arrive-- and with another Cybertronian, no less? Though he does inwardly remark on their size, he can tell that the one that speaks has a certain bearing about her. He's not military, but he can see it. As Hound introduces him, he does step to where they can see him without the SIC's shadow on him, hand lifting in a relaxed semi-salute. That'd be him!

To his credit he manages to not say anything at first, despite his interest in the delegates; they cut right into it, too, asking Hound about the monoliths first thing. Tailgate doesn't manage to stay shut up for long, holding up a finger when he fails at his task of deciding to stay quiet. "Actually, they aren't with us. Let's start with that-- we chased them here. We were just as surprised to find out where they were going."

Thundercracker turns, drink in hand, and looking Lieutenant incredulously. His optics squint. "Do I know you?" Why did they think he was dead? He shrugs, wings rising and falling behind him as he sips his drink. Oh, someone else recognized him. "Who's telling bots I'm dead? AndI gave them do you think they can-" He snaps his fingers and points to Lockjaw. This one gets it. "If humans were meant to fly they'd have wings- I should write that down- and someone had to get them out here."

Thundercracker stretches out his own pair of wings, mumbling something about not even hearing a thank you for that yet. He takes another drink, optics narrowing at the monsterbot but he stays quiet until Marissa finishes her threat. Or whatever that was. "I'm not a seeker anymore," he huffs. He takes another drink. This stuff is good.

Chimera has the urge to touch, as all felines do, but Marissa's question is enough to keep her from possibly freaking them out and blowing the meeting. "Those obelisks are part of a mystery grander than any of us. They hold some connection with--"

Enter Firestar, who approaches both her and Lockjaw. Predatory gaze quickly turns upon her luminous helm mod, the flickering flame drawing her like a moth. "..How is it your helm is aflame?" She even reaches a hand out to wave through it, curious.

Ayana shifts her weight to one hip, digging around in a pocket on the side of her suit, "I told you I would need this. You owe me ten bucks Faireborn. Also already a phrase, Thundercracker." Jones pulls out a small book and rifles through the pages until she finds what she is looking for. Clearing her throat, she loudly and clearly reads out to the small crowd questioning human needs, " Here it is, 'Respiration is defined as the movement of oxygen from the outside air to the cells within tissues, and the transport of carbon dioxide to the opposite direction.' Humans need to breathe air in order to live outside a space suit." Snapping her book shut, Jones stares right back up at the Cybertronians and Eukarians looming over them. Bring it on, robots. Tailgate gets her attention back, though, "So you chased these things to Earth and have nothing to do with it?" Wonder why she would sound so doubtful.

Bulkhead tries to catch Lieutenant's optic when Thundercracker responds to the avian, a '???' look meant to be shared with a friend on his face. not the Thundercracker he remembers. Not like they were on speaking terms, obviously, but that's certainly not the great, serious Seeker Bulkhead had always heard about, even fought against time to time. Probably. Four million years of war is a lot of battles to remember every detail of, you know, and a lot of it is a blur. He's no Lieutenant.

"So instead of being a Seeker..." Bulk says slowly, reaching for a drink of his own, at least to have something to do with his hands and mouth while puzzling all this out, "You're a, what? Ferry for humans? That's a little unexpected." 'For a Decepticon' is on his lips but he's being good! He doesn't say it!

"We're not intending any harm to your planet or your people," Hound says, shaking his helm. "I can promise you that. Like Tailgate said, those big black bricks, as you call 'em, aren't under our control. We're investigating them as a part of this ship's mission, which has to do with the restoration of our home planet, and nothing to do with Earth. And the war that brought us here in the first place is over. There will be no factions fighting over your planet." Some sliver of optimism keeps Hound from promising not to send crews down to the surface of the planet, though. He can still hope for the chance. "Sorry about the air thing-- this ship isn't equipped for most organics, unfortunately."

Blast Off glances over at Thundercracker. So THAT's what happened to him. Why would anyone actually choose to STAY on Earth? Lucky devil, though, look at that- Thundercracker left the Decepticons and yet no one took his head off for it. Hmm.

Then the spacefarer looks over at Jones and the group of Cybertronians talking about organics and air. He makes a face, not that anyone could see it under his faceplate. He rolls a wrist towards them, waving his hand briefly. "Come on, this is basic biology. You don't have to like humans to know that some organic species are quite fragile and require odd things, like oxygen, to sustain their life cycles. If you traveled much in space you'd all know these things." So simple, come on.

A pair of beady red eyes glare from some corner of the room. Mostly glaring at Thundercraker, particularly at the denying of his past as a Seeker (and thus a Decepticon, as far as many would be concerned). And just continue glaring.

No one should really be surprised Ravage is keeping to himself lurking at the fringes of the gathering. Because that's what he does.

Lockjaw looks up at Thundercracker again when he offers an explination, though from the perplexed look on her face, it didn't help much. Ayana's seems to make things even worse "Hue-mans have prisons inside them?" how do cells necessitate air?

It's the accusations that finally bring on a change of expression. Lockjaw looks from Fairbanks to Ayan, optics narrowing slightly "They have destryed much more than your 'assets'" her voice carries a rumbling hiss.

"No." Lieutenant was 'missing' for more than half the war, but that doesn't mean he hasn't been trying to stay up to date. Still, seekers are very famous for being terrors of the skies. Bulkhead's questionable look is returned with a deadpan expression. As if Bulk excepted him to answer with anything else. The librarian returns to sewing, rather glad he's not doing diplomacy. He's not in the mood to try being nice. "Try getting out of your own air, Blast Off, it seems being too close to the atmosphere is making you feel above it all again."

Grotusque actually listens when Ayana explains the science. And Blast Off, who gets an eyeroll before he gives Ayana a shrug. "Oh, uh. Yeah, that would be our bad. Nothing like a misunderstanding of organic necessities to suck the air outta the room. Eh?...Eh?"

He pauses so everyone can Properly Appreciate His Joke, when Thundercracker protests being called a Seeker. "A Cybertronian, then. With humans! It's a little unexpected, you gotta grant me that? I mean, maybe not as unexpected as, uh, us showing up near a bunch of obelisk things. Or us showing up."

"I wouldn't suggest touching--" Firestar starts, spying a glint in Chimera's optics, but then that feline stare swivels from the humans to herself. "Um..." she off-balance by this development, and reflexively turns it down a little further, nothing more than a flickering glow now. "I'm not sure now is the time..." She glances at the humans. Actually if this will keep the curious giant away from them, now is a great time! "You know what," she says brightly, "let's get some snacks and discuss it. Over here." She gestures away from the humans, hoping to lead Chimera away with her flame as the dangling carrot.

Faireborn looks over and nods at Ayana's question, despite the declarations of innocence from the Cybertronians. She taps her helmet. "We expected the air thing. And I'm happy to hear you say that you don't intend to resume your infighting back on Earth. But really, how am I going to believe - or how is EDC brass going to believe - that you just happened to, I don't know, stumble upon these things that, amazingly, headed right to Earth, and you just innocently followed them here? If they aren't yours, whose are they? And how do we get rid of them?"

Lockjaw's query garners a sharp glare from Faireborn. "Oh, don't be so offended. Your kind destroyed enough humans that you have nothing to complain about." Tailgate isn't sure if Ayana can tell he's smiling, so he's hoping the slight warp of his visor light says it when he opens up his hands in a palm-up shrug to her. Yep, that's right!

He nods along to Hound, especially at the first part. No intention to do anything untoward at all. "The closest there is to a human-capable space would be the botany lab, really, but I've actually never been there to check..." Tailgate answers to the lack of oxygen or atmosphere with a sheepish sound in his voice.

"We have records, don't we, Hound? I bet Rewind or someone even has video of the monolith leaving Shivah..." Tailgate edges in to ask this, head tipped up to look at Hound. "We have the navigation logs too..." " That is what we're trying to figure out ourselves," Ravage finally speaks up, in so much as his voice actually gets in volume. Might surprise a few humans that he can talk at all, he wasn't known for doing such very often. "The planet we witnessed this 'block' launching from was our own first encounter with it, so we are still in the process of dechipering its purpose ourselves."

A pause. A flick of the tip of his tail. "After it nearly killed an entirely population and several members of our crew." That planet sucked so much.

Lockjaw's optics narrow further at Fairborn's words. The gatorfomrer bends down further, as if intent on getting right up close and personal, giving a small look at her not so small teeth "I have not even heard of hue-mans until I boarded this ship" she hisses "But what I have heard that one of those things ravaged my homeworld, and likely killed a number of my tribe, my friends, so yes, I do have something to complain about." suddenly, these little creatures seem a lot less adorable, diminishing what happened to Eukaris like that.

Thundercracker's wings fall low, aiming a small pout Ayana's way. Already a phrase? Humans have so many phrases, so hard to make something original anymore. But his wings quickly hike up as he tilts his chin up proudly. "I'm a screenwriter. And sometimes I do favors... And I owe Marissa. " He owes Marissa a lot. She got him Buster.

Turning back to refill his drink, it becomes apart that he's not just rejecting being a seeker any longer but also no longer sporting a badge of anykind along his blue frame. He laughs as he turns back with his full glass again. "That's a good one," he tells Lieutenant with a broad smile. "Smart sense of humor- you'd like what I'm writing now. Dry wit undertones are Susan's thing- that's my main character. Susan Journeyour, she's a nurse. A human nurse." Hearing the mention of Cybertronians destroying the humans, his smile respectfully drops and he fills his silence with drinking more. His least favorite subject. Always leads to trouble- like this beast formoer. His optics narrow towards Lockjaw, wings angling aggressively. Just being prepared.

Blast Off just shrugs at Lieutenant. "My own ' air ' is only the galaxy itself, Lieutenant. I can't help it if these fleshlings are so... so /limited/. But I was simply pointing out that that basic biological knowledge ought to be known by everyone, even for the more limited among us. You go to a planet, you should prepare yourself for what lies ahead- and who lives there."

And like that Jones is back to militaristic style, nearly meeting Lockjaw's hiss with a few choice words of her own. The mention of one of the monolith wrecking Lockjaw's homeworld has her bristling up in anger and finally responding loudly, "Yeah, try nearly destroying our planet. Killing millions of people in their civil war. Entire cities wiped out. Lots of places are still trying to recover from the damage they caused! And now, you're bringing something ELSE to kill us." Oh Jones sounds bitter, not good for you guys.

If Bulkhead had hair, and eyebrows, the latter would be lost in the former, having risen so high that maybe they were trying to grow wings and fly. "A screenwriter." Owing a human he can understand, but that? Coming from a Seeker? The conversation only gets weirder when Thundercracker starts to talk about what he's writing. "A human nurse on a human planet, huh? That's a twist." Maybe Lieutenant's mood is catching, or maybe Bulkhead is so thrown off by this whole situation that he's acting a little odd. To steady himself, he takes a long pull of his drink, turning his attention to Blast Off instead.

"He does kind of have a point, Lieu." Bulkhead says this gently, as the avian doesn't seem to be very happy right now (is he ever? Bulk's not sure). "Though I guess I can see why someone from Eukaris wouldn't really think like that. They didn't do much traveling, as far as I know."

"Oh, the librarian gets complimented on his jokes. I see how it is. Everyone's about the trendy smart humor right now. It's gonna come back around to puns, just you wait," Grotusque promises as he stalks over to the table (stepping very carefully around the lil humans) to make sure to grab some enjex before Thundercracker drinks it all. As he does, he notably turns away from the humans and looks...very awkward as the issue of the damage Cybertronians did to Earth comes up. If someone looks, they may notice him subconsciously scuffling his foot.

"The botany lab is equipped for it, but it's also not the best place for a meeting," Hound says to Tailgate. Too many plants, not enough space for half the bots in this room. "And we do have records of this ship's logs. As for the monoliths... we're still in the process of investigating, but they're ancient even to us. We found one before it began traveling through space, and followed the course it made after it did."

The background chatter in the room is enough to make Hound suppress a sigh. So much for an easy conversation with the humans, especially with the sniping about the war going on. "Marissa Faireborn, some of the members of this crew are neutrals-- civilians in our war. They had nothing to with events on Earth," he adds.

"So technically it's not real fire. It's more like a fashion accessory than anything else, and it works by--" Ohhhh scrap, while she was busy chatting up Chimera an absolute diplomatic disaster has begun to unfold. Firestar holds up a finger to tell Chimera she'll be just a moment, and then she's hurrying back the way she came. Hoping she's not about to get her arm ripped off for this, she throws herself around Lockjaw's middle and forcefully heaves her back.

"LET'S NOT EAT THE SQUISHIES. Um, I mean! Please don't intimidate the uh, the nice humans!" she's half panicking because she doesn't know how to handle this, so she tries to smooth things over with a nervous laugh. "Sooo sorry about that, human representatives! We're just having um, a wee bit of a misunderstanding! You see, not all of us are Cybertronians! We came from different worlds and, um..." Firestar glances at Lockjaw. She's not sure how convincing this will be, but it's worth a shot. "Well she had her homeworld ravaged by these things. Absolutely dreadful! So she's a victim here, if you can believe it." She offers Lockjaw a nervous look. Please, please try to look more like a victim. "And like I said, not Cybertronians. That bears repeating." So hopefully the humans will stop blaming them for that war!

Ravage emits a feline snort. "How ironic. Here we are, Autobots and Decepticons and Neutrals getting along after millions of years of war, and its the humans wasting their shorter lifespans on holding a grudge. After all the times they tried to say they're not like us." Of course 'getting along' is a bit of a stretch in itself, but it's not exactly untrue, either.

"Yep. Colonists. From other planets, like Lockjaw here. Nothing to do with Earth, or the war--" Tailgate shares this after Hound starts, and his voice is rather gentle for all the growling going on. He jumps a little as Firestar steps in too, trying to intervene on a physical level. Ah, oh, jeez. Audio fins twitch at Thundercracker's laugh. He really wasn't trying to be funny and now he's a little embarrassed. Especially now that Bulkhead and Grotusque call him out on it on top of Blast Off's response. The avian would try to sink lower in his chair if he wasn't giving a vile glare to Bulk. "They are not soldiers, Blast Off. They know not what to prepare for." Perhaps if he himself had been to Earth he would try to educate them, but he hardly did himself. He only knows their biology, that's as far as he's gotten. "Try to come down and remember where others come from."

Sadly, Chimera's hand only meets empty space where the flame once was, leaving nothing but a small glow atop her helm. "This tease is vexing.." She huffs faintly, optics narrowing at the loss of her quarry. And while Firestar may wish to lead her off for the humans' safety, this cat is not so easily swayed. "Mmh.." She debates, standing where she is while the fiery femme tries to move off. "..I think not."

With no flame to chase, Chimera turns back to the humans and especially Lockjaw getting a bit close. "Stay yourself, Lockjaw, they do not know." A sterner tone meet the gator while stepping up beside her, though eyes turn next to the humans and Chimera is soon sitting on her knees. She's closer, but they'll still have to crane their necks to look up. "Faireborn.. yes?" Jade eyes look calmly to the woman in charge. "Do humans strive to discover pieces of your past? Unlock the mysteries of your race? We believe these giant structures to be that of our own. ..Or at least I do. So we ask you to allow us a simple investigation."

As for Firestar.. Well, she just grabbed Lockjaw, good luck. Chimera will cover the humans if needed.

Bad answer, hue-man. Lockjaw's snarl broadens, teeth on full display "We did not bring those things" her optics flash with indignation. How dare she accuse her of being remotely involved with something that would harm her tribe! "We have followed them, and I have every intent to -- ragh!" in the mood that she is in, someone grabbing her around the waist sends her whipping around, clawed hand grabbing for her attacker as she lets out a warning hiss.

"... Mostly getting along," Ravage amends his own comment without missing a beat as Lockjaw turns to swat away Firestar. Considering how often he's seen Decepticons go from being chums on moment to beating the slag out of each other, the turnabout doesn't seem to phase him other than a minor ear-twitch of annoyance at the timing.

Blast Off nods to Bulkhead. See? Someone with some understanding, here. Because Bulk agrees with him and thus is obviously more enlightened. Hearing about how the Eukarians didn't travel much gains a small shake of the head and a *tsk*. "A pity. Traveling expands both horizons and minds."

The Combaticon can't help but emit a soft huff reminiscent of a chuckle to what Ravage says. "Indeed," he agrees in a (possibly rare) moment of Decepticon solidarity. Another small shake of his head, then he turns focus to Thundercracker. "Come down? Like you did? Why choose the ground when you have the entire sky open to you? Entire galaxies, even?"

<FS3> Opposed Roll -- Lockjaw=Unarmed Vs Firestar=Acrobatics < Lockjaw: Great Success (8 3 6 6 7 7 8 1 3 1 7) Firestar: Good Success (6 6 5 8 6 2 3 8 5 8) < Net Result: Lockjaw wins - Solid Victory

Ravage's sudden appearance is enough to startle Faireborn, but she recovers quickly enough to consider whether evidence of these aliens' innocence even matters. She lets Ayana handle the one green jerk while she deals with the other one. Other green one. "Neutrals, you say? Fascinating. I might know how they feel." She considers Hound's story. "So you found this ancient thing - this monolith - and just when you do, it up and nearly kills everybody and then flies off to Earth. And you really have nothing to do with it. Hound, I'm sorry, but do you even believe that? But sure, we can arrange for your records to be received and analyzed. There's no trust here, though, so I doubt that it will help your case."

Chimera's earnest query does jar Faireborn into an ever-so-slightly more relaxed attitude, despite the kerfuffle brewing nearby. "That of your own, indeed. Of course, it's not like we could stop you from investigating. We'll be doing some of our own, I assure you."

Bulkhead withers beneath Lieutenant's glare. He should have been more specific, that Blast Off had a point about researching the lifeforms of a planet you were heading to, if you knew where you were going and what lived there, anyway. The rest of it, the whole 'limited' stuff? That he didn't agree with. Well, this is what he gets for opening his mouth...this delegation is not going at all the way he thought it would, which becomes even more glaringly clear when there's a flurry of motion in the corner of his optic. Are mechs fighting right now?! That's not really the best impression they want to give to humans who, if he'd overheard correctly, were perfectly happy to blast them out of the sky if necessary. Not much has changed in the past few years, it seems. While Bulk doesn't move yet, he keeps a close eye on the scene, ready to intervene and break it up if necessary. It looks like, between Chimera, Hound and Tailgate, they might have things in hand, but. Just in case.

"Watch who you call 'limited', Blast Off. Last I recall, it still takes you a nice half hour to do a U-turn in the air." Thundercracker scoffs. 'Limited.' Tch. Tch! Humans are more than his race gives them credit. Their kind revolves around change and stays so stagnant. Humans... They change more than them, faster then them. Its amazing. He heads back over, closer to the humans, clutching his drink tightly. No reason. Just in case anything happens.

Thundercracker's wings twitch and then stiffen as he spies Ravage. Oh, the cat. Which means Soundwave is here- and Hound is Second-in-Command. What kind of ship is this? "Well, I... Agree with the EDC here, Ravage. Its... Suspicious that you all show up with these things. Earth has gone through enough. They're just trying to- slaggit." As Lockjaw turns on Firestar, he steps forward, arm raised and the shoulder mounted blaster aimed for the Eukarian. But he doesn't fire. Just being prepared. This is the anything that could happen he was worried about.

<FS3> Grotusque rolls Temperance: Failure. (2 4 3 6 4)

<FS3> Hound rolls Command: Good Success. (7 1 5 1 2 1 3 6 1 7)

Grotusque blinks. Is a fight really going to break out in the middle of a tense diplomatic meeting? That's...hilarious. He tries to stifle his laughter, but it's hopeless even when he covers his mouth-there's a muffled cackle. "Are you really tryin' to get into a fight with something the size of your ankle, Gator Lady? Man, this would really have gone a lot smoother if we brought some human booze too. -They, uh, they drink booze, right? Like something. I see them doing it on TV."

He clears his throat. "Look, uh, humans, all we can do is tell ya the truth. We didn't make these things. We chased 'em. I don't get why they're hanging around your planet like their its official fan club.

"If you'd rather, we can arrange a meeting with your superiors and command on this ship," Hound starts to offer. "Like I said, we're not here to cause trouble. We'd be happy to figure out these monoliths and leave--" and then Hound is interrupted, by the hissing from Lockjaw and Firestar's babbled interruption. Hound jerks back up to his feet, turning toward the two with hands on his hips. The smile he's been using with the humans is gone now, replaced by a severe expression. "Stand down, all of you!" he says, raising his voice.

<FS3> Tailgate rolls Command: Good Success. (7 6 4 2 7 1 5 5)

"Sounds like she thinks this is related to them." Is mumbled under Jones' breath at Chimera's comment before getting in a stance similar to Thundercrackers, only hers more apt to grab Faireborn and hit the deck if giant limbs start flying. Even if limbs dont start swinging she looks prepared to drag the director back to the relative safety that Thundercracker gives. At least he has enough size to look the others in the eyes.

"I would expect no less. And may I say, from what I have been able to read and watch during our journey here, you humans are quite industrious. You may be a young species, but you are surprisingly driven and ambitious." She's quite enjoying this talk with her first human. Going very well, yes.

..Until Lockjaw lashes out and Thundercracker raises his weapon. Chimera may not be Eukarian, but she did help colonize it so she feels an obligation to step in. The scuffle gets a glance, the beastfemme pressing lips thin, before looking back to the two humans. "My apologies for my crewmembers. Should this.. persist I will see to you are unharmed." AKA pick them up.

That said, she grunts while standing back to her full height and follows up on Hounds order, arms akimbo and a stern look sent to Firestar and Lockjaw. "Flame-helmed one, keep your hands to yourself or she might take one. Lockjaw, if you cannot act civilized, dismiss yourself." Tailgate is about to set on Lockjaw for dragging out a fight, when Hound steps in first; it doesn't help the case of anyone else sniping on about the current counter either, it seems, as Tailgate falls right in line with Hound when he brings up his comms, one hand on his hip and the other at his helm. "I need more security on the Meeting, pronto--" Tailgate shows his bold side when he steps right up to Thundercracker a second after that.

"Please, there's no need for that-- we've got this." The minibot even holds his hand up, signaling at the Seeker from only about waist height.

It would be a lie to say Ravage isn't a bit amused at Fairborne's start, and the oh so knowing look Thundercracker gives him. But a few twitches of his tail are the only break in his otherwise stoic manner. "Never said it shouldn't be suspicious, even if such paranoia is ill-placed this time. If they accepted us just because of claims of change, one would fear they hadn't learned anything from last time. Just.. would be a shame to see worse come to worse because of it."

With that certain cat-like smugness Ravage circles the 'former' Seeker's legs. "But you're here. When their stubborness eventually leads to downfall you can write it into one of your scripts for their posterity." Then slinks off back towards the other Cybertronians. "Post mortem."

<FS3> Ravage rolls Cattitude: Great Success. (2 8 4 7 7 4 8 2)

Blast Off straightens up as Thundercracker retorts to him, the shuttle emitting a louder *hufff* as he crosses his arms. "Hardly! And at least *I* can still fly whenever and wherever I want to!" His nose raises to the air. Hound's ordered command to the group gains a bit of attention from the Combaticon, the tone in the Autobot's voice enough like Onslaught's to make the shuttle ease down just a bit, and he looks away. HMPH. Blast Off makes sure to stay far away from the scuffle with the Eukarian right now, he wants none of such uncivilized behavior.

Faireborn looks (way) up at Chimera receptively enough, but mixed with the slant of doubtful eyebrows. Grotusque's proclamation of innocence is likewise noted. She returns her attention to Hound and ... oh, there goes Tailgate ... when the old beastformer goes to break up the ensuing fight. "Here on your ship might be the only option. One reason for my visit here was to warn you lot not to set foot on Earth, or face immediate retaliation. After this display from your ... neutrals? ... I'm sorry, I can't justify recommending anything otherwise. Even a minor disagreement like that will cost human lives in the wrong place. I hear what you're saying, though, and I'll let EDC brass know, along with your recordings and logs. We'll see how it goes." She looks over at her fellow human. "Jones. Everything copacetic? I think we're about done here."

Thundercracker glances away from the scuffle long enough to look down at Tailgate. He vents and powers down his weapon, arm lowering. "Knew the 'working together' was too good to be true..." he comments. Still infighting, it seems. He tenses, however, as Ravage practically stalks around him, glaring as the cat leaves. "Ugh, I'm beginning to remember why I left." Other than being left for dead and shot at by 'comrades' more than once.

Thundercracker drinks his glass empty. "Fly wherever you want except Earth, Blast Off." So 'HA' to you, snobby shuttle. A shame, the weather and skies are so nice this year. He looks around for a place to put his glass and ends up... Just handing it to a Lost Lighter. "Oh, are we leaving now? Good, should get back to Buster in time for her dinner."

"It's complicated." The minibot murmurs half to himself as a couple of security mechs arrive at the foremost deck doorway, stepping inside and to either side of the door as Thundercracker empties his glass. Tailgate's head is helpfully table-shaped and nearby, and it's testament to his niceness when he doesn't move after having the glass left with him, balanced near perfect on his helm. Sigh. He can't help but be more frustrated with the humans anyway-- what with their distrust. They only came for one thing, after all.

Blast Off sniffs at Thundercracker, the shuttle full of that haughty attitude he does so well. "As if I'd *want* to fly around that *mudball* anyway. You can have your dirt, I'll stay among the stars." Even if he might, just *might* be secretly wondering about these new Star Wars movies he's been hearing about....

"It was nice seeing you again too," Ravage replies to Thundercrack with much faux smarm.

"I understand," Hound says, with a nod. "We'll be in contact." And hopefully there won't be arguments about which planets had it worse, next time. Then, because he definitely saw Thundercracker over by that drinks table... "have a safe journey back."

Lockjaw's head snaps around at Hound's order. Her teeth remain bared, but grudgingly, she releases Firestar. Thundercraker, Grotesque, and Chimera all recieve a look as well. She stops on the latter "I will not take such insults directed towards my tribe, Tribeless, nor will I sit idle when someone attacks me from behind. She is lucky I did not take her arm, or head off." her optics flicker across the others present, pausing on Grotesque again "If I wanted the hue-mans dead, they would already be so."

Jones still looks ready to duck and roll but gives a small nod to Faireborn, "Copecetic enough." Their message has been delivered so time to get the heck out of dodge before they have to dodge. While Faireborn may seem somewhat sympathetic, its doubtful the other woman would have any qualms about blowing any Cybertronian- besides Thundercracker- she sees out of the sky. "Ready to head out when you are." As she begins to head out with Thundercracker, she almost mumbles up to him, "I'm telling you, you should switch brands with Buster's food. The stuff I found is way better."

"Well, we tried," Grotusque insists with a sign as he endeavours to drink whatever booze is left. "Yeah, yeah," he adds to Lockjaw. "Just cool your jets for now. And hey, the obelisks aren't on Earth, we don't have to set foot there, right? Ain't ideal, but we work with what we got."

Well...that's not good. Now that the efforts of Tailgate, Hound, and Chimera - as he suspected - cooled this boiling pot back down to room temperature, Bulkhead no longer has to worry about getting involved in an altercation. He does have to worry about getting to Earth and seeing Miko when that will be putting his life at risk. Hopefully Wheeljack will remain as deaf to ship's gossip as usual and not find out about this...Bulk will have to see if he can come up with a reason for going to Earth alone to see Miko, despite having told Wheeljack he could meet her too...Something to puzzle out later. Now, he'll remain by the table with drinks, draining the one he'd chosen and working with Grotusque to finish the rest. "Sometimes trying is the best we've got," he says, heaving a sigh of his own and grabbing another glass. Try, try, try again.

"Thank you, Hound. And, um, thanks for the water anyway." Faireborn does muster up a courteous nod and, after a noticeable pause to look over the now de-escalating rambunctiousness, joins back up with her team. "Well, looks like we at least survive. Thundercracker, take us back home. Please."

With diplomacy taking a deep dip, Lieutenant is going to pack up his quilt, grab two of the glasses, and chug one on his way out. "Library is open for Hugh Man's culture and such. Please refer to level three and direct yourselves left of the elevator to educate yourself." Since no one seems to be able to find it.

Thundercracker looks at the Cybertronians, wings twitching, but leaves without another word to them. Not his place, not his world anymore... "Buster likes her food how it is- why do I have to change it? And you got it Marissa. Maybe you two can not wiggle so much on the ride back? It tickles."

Chimera's ears perk high and a surprised look alights upon her face when hearing they won't be able to visit Earth, looking to Faireborn and Jones as they start to make their leave. This.. is extremely disappointing. She quite enjoyed organic things, and those of Earth that she saw while coming here were beautiful, Chimera wishing to experience them. Perhaps they never could go to Earth, but the chance seemed further ruined by the scuffle.

Back to Lockjaw, her optics narrow to slits when stepping up to the scale walker, looking down upon her with a distasteful frown. "I have known Onyx from the beginning, rode upon Chela, and was one of the first to step upon Eukaris' soil before your spark was even a thought in the mind of Primus. I am not so much Tribeless as I am your ancestor. And for such progeny.. I would have expected better. We may be beasts, but we are not animals. Perhaps learn some restraint next time." Her pointed stare lingers a moment longer before she heads out once the humans have left.

"It is not your world, so you have no place telling me to 'cool my jets'" Lockjaw hisses at Gorotesque. Thankfully for the monsterbot, her attention is promptly turned to Chimera "You abandoned Eukaris. You speak like you are so above us, but you were not there. You have not lived on its soil, you have not been through what we have" she turns fully towards the larger femme, optics narrowing "You have no claim to Eukaris, nor any right to tell me how I should react to someone disrespecting it, and my tribe."

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