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2017-05-20 Unstoppable Force, Meet Immovable Object

From Transformers: Lost and Found

2017-05-20 Unstoppable Force, Meet Immovable Object
Date 2017/05/20
Location Lost Light: Recreation -- Swerve's
Participants Disaster, Fortress Maximus, Sandstorm
Summary Disaster and Sandstorm have two very different views on life, and Max is caught somewhere in the middle.

Disaster practically lives in Swerve's, and not because someone might assume he's drowning his sorrows. No, he just loves the atmosphere and striking up conversations with those around. It's so much fun to chat, drink, and generally try to keep merry. Except after the worms attacked, it's been a mess. He's been trying to assist in the cleaning as best he can (in return for drinks) so he's a temporary help in the bar today. It's still pretty fun!

Sandstorm comes to Swerve's for a completely different reason. After everything that went down in the engine rooms with the worms, he's been working pretty much non-stop ever since the jump, cleaning up and patching breaches in the hull and fixing the mess left behind by whatever-the-fuck-that-was and its worm-drone babies. What he could really use right now is to curl up in one of the vents and take a power nap (there is NO WAY he's dealing with whatever went down in his habsuite and a probably-panicked roommate to boot) but instead he's lighting up the entrance of Swerve's as he walks in. No one can fault him for taking a break, right?

When Sandstorm arrives at the bar, noting the damage that still needs to be taken care of and knowing he'll likely be called down here before long, he settles heavily onto one of the stools and rests his elbows on the counter, hunched forward over its surface. Scrubbing his hands down his face, without looking he calls, "Hey, what's a mech gotta do to get a Motormaster around here?"

Fortress Maximus has been to Swerve's fairly often, sometimes to have a good time, more often to drink away a bad one. Right now his mood is sort of a 50/50. He made up with Whirlwind (very good) amid the wreckage of parts of the ship flooded with worm drones (bad) and they don't know where they are or what happened (very bad.) And Max was remarkably good at slipping back into Simanzi mode during the battle. (???) So he's not really sure where his mind is.

He does know he needs something calming, so now that he's been repaired from his battle damage, he's here at Swerve's mostly to clean and pick up rubble. The giant arrives with a very large broom, lugging equipment from maintenance. "Do you need any assistance?"

As usual, he looks like he hasn't been recharging well. Yet there's something oddly optimistic to his tone.

The minibot grins widely when Maximus shows up to help. He has seen the bigger mech around and greeted him, but they haven't had a change to really talk in a long time. Not in foreve- no 5EVER! They have much catching up to do. "Hiya Max! Thanks for helping out, how've you been? Didja see all the worm-things? I kinda had fun fighting them, but they caused a lot of damage but would it be weird to ask if you had fun shooting them too?"

Oh don't worry Sandstorm, your presence hasn't got unnoticed at all. Disaster looks over to him, with an ever cheerful grin, "Well, since you're offering, you wanna help us? Sweep up? straight the place up the place a bit better? Drinks can be on me when we've done a decent amount."

Sandstorm glances over at Fortress Maximus, and decides to ignore him. Clearly just come to help. Sure, fine, whatever. The bar looks like slag still and is in need of cleaning up, just like the rest of the ship, just like Sandstorm's been doing the past few days. All he wants is one slagging drink.

The red minibot that addresses him next is almost ignored as well. Almost. "No, I don't." Sandstorm stands up, rotors giving an irritable spin. "I've been cleaning and fixing and straightening up for forty-eight cycles straight, and I want a fragging drink. If neither of you are working and can get one for me, I'll do it myself." Which he probably should have done in the first place. With a burst of air from his whirling rotors to give him a boost, Sandstorm puts a hand on the counter and vaults over it, right into the bar itself. Before he goes to search for what he wants, though, he smacks some shanix down on the counter. "In case either of you think I'm not good for it."

Max's optics go a little wide at Disaster. He'd forgotten how much...CHEER the minibot had coming from him. He doesn't seem bothered by it or put off, though; there's, in fact, a little smirk on his face. "Nah. Didn't exactly walk out of that one smiling this time, but that's because we're not supposed to have a Simanzi level of action on the damn ship. But boy did tearing them apart feel good." Which, again, he's not sure if it's supposed to. But there's no point in lying about it.

Sandstorm gets a squint. Max reminds himself he doesn't even work in maintenance and he's mostly here because he finds cleaning meditative, and starts sweeping up bits and pieces of things with a little huff. "Not sure what's intact back there. This place got hit hard."

He's not bothered by Sandstorm's response. Disaster only laughs good-naturedly as Sandstorm goes to make his own drink. "Mech, if I were allowed to make drinks, I'd be mixing my own for a living. But if you can make them yourself, that's awesome!" he cheers on, with a thumbs up, "You deserve that!" What a good mech! Helping straighten up the ship and making himself a drink. That's a good guy to have around.

Fortress Maximus gets the little one's attention again, "Violence is kinda bad, but it really did feel good. No one got hurt and those things weren't sentient so it was nice to just go PEWPEWPEW PEW for a change. Who knew how much ya miss it?" Practice rooms just aren't going to cut it anymore compared to those worms.

<FS3> Sandstorm rolls Mind+mind: Success. (4 5 4 2 2 7 6 4)

"Sounds like it's about time you learned, then." Since neither were going to attempt to stop him, Sandstorm gets to work sifting through the mess behind the counter to see what he can find. A lot of it is shattered, the contents either cleaned up or dried into a stain on the floor, and Sandstorm has to do a lot of digging in the cabinets to find engex bottles that weren't smashed during the worm assault. What he does find isn't the greatest; the engex itself is fine, but mixed together will be sour as hell. Sandstorm frowns. Well, beggars can't be choosers.

"You're right," Sandstorm agrees when he emerges, putting the bottles on the counter along with a shaker and a whole mug that he'd found. Not the classiest, but made thick enough that it wasn't destroyed. "I do deserve this." He and Grease had been the ones who pretty much made that whole jump possible, after all. Taking all of the materials he's gathered, Sandstorm mixes himself a drink. It's not the flair one would see with an accomplished bartender, like Mirage maybe; he does alright, though. When it's done, he pours the mixture into the mug and leans forward on the bartop again, this time from the other side, as he takes a hearty pull from his drink. Yup, sour as all hell. "No one got hurt, huh?" he chimes in. "You haven't been by the medibay since it happened, have you."

Max makes a face at the concoction Sandstorm mixes together, but doesn't comment on that further. Sandstorm did leave money on the counter, so at least he's being honest in the eyes of the lawfully-minded former warden. "Yeah," he agrees instead, "I'm not really sure about no one getting hurt, Disaster. The line out the medibay was down the hall. But it sounds like we probably avoided any deaths, which is better than I can say for most battles. I'm not religiously inclined, but I'd still call that a small miracle." And Whirlwind was okay. That's miracle enough.

"Mind the broken glass," he adds as he passes with his big broom. "If it gets in your seams it hurts like hell."

Time he learned? His lone blue optic sparkles as he turns to Sandstorm, "Does that mean you'll teach me? Maybe after all the cleaning up and repairing? I can pick it up. I'm not a fast learner but I'm pretty dili- dili- dily- um, focused!" Words are hard sometimes.

"Well, others probably got hurt but nothing our medics can't handle!" Disaster declares proudly. They have Ratchet for crying out loud! The greatest medic of all time! And he has a bunch of other medics too that are also pretty awesome. Knowing how to put people back together isn't easy, but it's amazing to him when someone can be a medic. "So okay, some got hurt but we're all still alive! That's all that matters."

Sandstorm makes a face at both of them. More religion talk - he's so glad that wyvern mech isn't here to add to it, damn holy book-thumpers - and the minibot being almost disgustingly chipper. How the hell could someone stay that upbeat in the face of all this? An upsetting thought comes to him, that it wouldn't take the Wreckers long to break a spirit like that, even if the kid did survive. Sandstorm pushes it away. He's got enough to brood over as is.

"I'm not gonna teach you, I said it's a good time to learn, not that it's a good time to learn from me." More of the awful concoction disappears down his intake. "And damn, kid, reel it in on that optimism, your outlook's so bright I'm getting radiation corrosion."

"I think the optimism's fine," Max snaps, a little more sour than he intended to come across. "We could use at least some of it. Though...long as it's realistic optimism." His mouth draws into a line as he considers. "Our situation now...I get the impression it's a lot worse than it was before, even if we don't know all the details yet. And I can't help but wonder how that worked out for Earth. They had the bad luck to be in close proximity to that thing."

Disaster giggles, "Sorry mech, but that's my outlier ability." He wiggles his fingers at him very spooky like. Fear his optimism! "Besides, I'll reel it back if it's ina- in a- the wrong time to be overly happy; but I just see myself as just happy. That's all." Fortress Maximus says something about situations getting possibly worse. "Well probably, is but we have a pretty good crew of fighters! We should be able to handle ourselves." Disaster didn't actually see the thing, he was busy fighting worms once they came on board. He knows very little about whatever it is.

Sandstorm levels an unimpressed look on Fort Max. "Yet it doesn't seem to be doing it for you," he points out, completely unaffected by the sourness in the tank's tone. "See, that's the problem. There's no such thing as realistic optimism. Everything is, as humans would say, completely shit, and it always will be. You can have positive thoughts all you want but all it does is make you annoying, and kinda sad." Sandstorm slams back the last of his mixture, already starting to feel that tell-tale buzzing beginning along his circuits. Did he mention he hasn't had any regular energon today? "You'll know I'm right when all this comes crashing down around your audials, and all the happy thoughts in the galaxy won't be able to stop it from happening." He flashes his teeth in a wolfish, mocking grin. "But hey, until then? Go nuts."

To Max's left, Disaster, who is cheerfully and innocently convinced Everything Will Turn Out Fine. To his right, Sandstorm, who seems to believe everything is terrible always, a sentiment Max himself shared not too long ago but has increasing trouble holding onto. He looks between the two, and while he's more inclined to side with Disaster, that has less to do with agreement (the universe does support Sandstorm's thesis a little better) and stems more from the fact that he actually likes Disaster. And Sandstorm is slacking off.

"Hmph. You think I don't know how awful things can get?! Believe me, I have plenty of reason to think things can go wrong again. Will go wrong. But I think throwing up your arms and saying it's just going to get worse, so who cares? Laziness. You have to have some kind of ideal to live for. Aren't you an Autobot too?"

He vents, leaning his broom against the counter so he can scoop up glass with a dustpan. "Besides, like he said. It's his outlier ability."

Max has no idea Disaster was joking.

Disaster's smile falters just a bit. "But I don't want to be sad anymore." he says stepping close to Sandstorm, "I've been sad long enough, and I want to be happy because there's still so many people to meet and stories to hear! I know I'm going to die, everyone will at some point; but until then, why not enjoy your time? Have fun! Make mistakes! Get hurt and beaten down, then get back up again! My world has come crashing down on me several times, there have been 'completely shit' times, but as you say:" his cheerful grin returns, "I'll go nuts!"

Disaster walks over to Max and pats his leg with a bit of a laugh, "Maxi, I was kidding. I'm an MTO, I don't have abilities. Although it would be cool if I did!" It's okay, he's not bothered by any of this. Young as Disaster is, he's learned to let go of things and carry on no matter the situation. He's learned that from his Commander and lieutenant.

<FS3> Sandstorm rolls Skepticism: Good Success. (5 6 1 1 7 5 8 6)

Sandstorm's grin shifts into a lazy smirk as he lifts the bottles to mix himself another drink. It's starting to grow on him. "Who said I'm throwing up my arms and not caring? I sure didn't." The smirk slips as Max goes on. Aren't you an Autobot too? "Yeah, I'm an Autobot. So what? What's that ever done for me? Or for you?" He shakes the shaker a little more vigorously than is absolutely necessary before pouring its contents into the mug. "I had an ideal once, sure. And now I don't, because I grew up and stopped believing in fantasy."

Disaster's words have a strange effect on Sandstorm, his expression shifting into something unreadable, rotor arms sliding down a few degrees. As quickly as it happens, though, the moment's gone, and he snorts. "Thing is, kid, you get real tired of dragging yourself back out of hell when you keep having to do it over and over again, for millions of years. So yeah, run with it while you can. But like I said, you'll see I'm right in the end."

<FS3> Fortress_Maximus rolls Coping: Success. (1 3 6 7)

When Sandstorm points out how the badge is not exactly working out as well for Fortress Maximus as he ought to, it's a reminder of What Happened. And as usual, when reminded of What Happened, Max has the burning urge to either tear at something or just lock up. He doesn't answer, instead dimming his optics and setting down his equipment so he doesn't break it. And then...

Oh. He's fine. The moment passed. He can do that sometimes. Good to know. Maybe it's Disaster's own words. Disaster, who seems to have lost a lot but remains...himself. And who pats his leg, earning a gentle little look back down at the MTO. "Oh...right. Of course." He totally knew that. "I think that optimism of yours is powerful, though. Regardless of what some people might think, you should hold onto it. You never know when you'll need it."

Disaster gives Fortress Maximus a pleasant smile. The minibot is still completely unaware of Max's past, so he just thinks Sandstorm's words don't bother him that much either. He's just letting it roll off of him. Good Job, Maxi! Another pat for you!

He looks back at Sandstorm with more of an apologetic look, "I'm sorry if you got tired of dragging yourself back out of the pits, mate." Disaster steps back from Maximus to turn entirely towards Sandstorm. "It gets tough fighting battles that never seem to end or only get worse. There's no hope of climb out of your own hell and you're left waiting for it all to end. It's easier for me to say I can climb back out, but it's not that way for everyone." The minibot truly wishes it was, and it's taken him months to realize that not everyone can dust themselves off and carry on like he can. "But hey, I'm rooting for you whenever you want to climb out of hell again!"

<FS3> Opposed Roll -- Disaster=Inspire Vs Sandstorm=Skepticism < Disaster: Good Success (7 5 3 4 1 2 4 4 8 6 1) Sandstorm: Good Success (8 1 7 4 2 8 3 5) < Net Result: Sandstorm wins - Marginal Victory

Sandstorm feels some regret at how Fortress Maximus begins to react, and also some...relief. He knows as much as anyone else what happened on Garrus 9, from rumors and files and speculation. He knows what that kind of thing can do to you, knows quite personally, in fact, and while he's not entirely happy that he's almost set off Mt. Fort Max, he'd also welcome it if he did. You want to know what ideal he lives for, Max? It's going out in a fiery explosion, tasting that rush of throwing yourself into something idiotic and dangerous that you don't walk away from this time.

Then Max holds it in, and the moment passes, and Sandstorm cycles his optics at Max's little jab. Whatever dude.

Sandstorm rests his forearms on the counter as he turns his attention back to Disaster, taking a slurp from his mug. The minibot is truly and stubbornly optimistic, Sandstorm will give him that. Something in him almost, almost loosens - and then it doesn't, and he shakes his head, tail rotor sliding up and rotor arms shifting again. A rotary expression of 'you tried'. "Well, at least the fantasy world you're living in is a nice one, I guess, for all the good it does you." Surveying Disaster over the rim of his mug, Sandstorm shrugs before lifting his drink. "Here's to you and your delusions, little guy, and your belief that there's something other than hell for me to climb to." Down goes about a fourth of drink number two. Yeah, that's a good floaty numbness going on in his processor. After this he'll have to find a nice vent to crawl into and sleep it off.

Max knows at least a good number of people on the ship know what's happened. People who have never laid eyes on Optimus Prime know what happened. Sandstorm, a Wrecker, must have some inkling. There's a warning flash in Fort Max's red optics, as if to let Sandstorm know that he's going to let it pass, and Sandstorm had best not bring it up again.

But at least he didn't break the broom.

Then he listens to Disaster, quiet and genuinely a little touched. "I dunno, I think there has to be something else. Maybe no Cyberutopia or Heaven, but...well." He goes back to sweeping to avoid eye contact with either one of them. "Speaking as someone who's had a pretty extensive stay in hell, you can still find moments of heaven sometimes."

He seems to realize how corny that sounds the moment it comes out of his mouth, and embarassment settles in. He's getting sentimental. Around OTHERS.

It was worth a shot. Disaster is not defeated though, it's hard to keep him down! Instead he salutes Sandstorm, since he has no drink. "Someone's gotta believe in you." he replies earnestly, even if it is delusional. To him, everyone needs a little support.

The minibot starts sweeping up again before looking up at Fortress Maximus with a bright smile. "You're sweet. Glad you found a little heaven in your life. You wanna tell me about it while we keep cleaning? I'd like to hear about it. Even if you think it's silly, don't worry!"

Sandstorm makes a 'tt' noise, at both of them. "There isn't, not for--me." He'd been about to say 'for any of us', but that might be too close to the button he'd pressed earlier, and for the moment he isn't going to poke the bear that is Fortress Maximus again. "And your little 'moments of heaven'? Just makes things worse when it blows up in your face." This is probably the most self-exposition he's done since, well, ever. Not that these two seem to realize, which is just fine with him. He's already failing at getting that minibot to stop being all...himself on Sandstorm, he doesn't need the pity from Fortress Maximus too.

Chalk him up to being a jerk and move on, that's the goal here.

"Go ahead, Fortress Maximus. Tell us all about it. Relish it while it lasts, before the rug's pulled out from under you." Sandstorm's grin is sloppier, his voice losing some of its heat, as the engex really starts kicking in. "Though you know, maybe I am wrong about how screwed up your life is. It'd take someone pretty damn strong to pull anything out from under you." Laughing at his own joke, Sandstorm moves and leans back against the mostly-destroyed bottle shelves behind him, crossing his arms over his chest as he immediately stops paying attention. He's had enough happy talk for one day.

When Disaster asks about what sort of heaven Fort Max has found, there's a startled pink flush in his cheeks. He's generally a private person, and while he hasn't exactly had a lot of romantic dalliances altogether in his relatively short life, he certainly doesn't 'kiss and tell' about them. Even if he's sure Disaster would be very kind about it...

Well, Sandstorm is right there, and coming a bit close to reminding Max of his own insecurities, how it all went so wrong once, how close it was to never being righted again. It's a bit Too Soon, as one might say. So he starts sweeping again, clearing his throat. "I'll tell you about it another time, Disaster." Not in front of Sandstorm, in other words. "Why don't you tell me how you've been?"

There. Now Sandstorm gets to hear a torrent of optimism for the rest of the time he's here.

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