2017-07-11 Gramma Special
From Transformers: Lost and Found
|Location||Rigard - Great Mountain|
|Summary||Chimera gets Rodimus high to experience the wisdom of the Matrix. Or something.|
The towers of the temple just barely rise as high as this perch on the Great Mountain. The air is cooler and crisper here, the trees thinner, the ground rockier. A winding stair ascends from the temple to an observation platform, offering a commanding view of the entire sprawl of the metrotitan's city, hazy during the day and glistening at night. Oftentimes a small bonfire is lit, lending warmth and light to those lingering in nearby seating areas.
Chimera had been very particular about the time and date in which she and Rodimus were to meet once again for the fated journey through the mind. And for good reason, as many things factored into its success, such as the alignment of the stars and the weather. But the location was the most important, Chimera aiming for lofty heights for better reception with the universe, which is why Rodimus will be directed to the observation platform above the temple. A lack of people suggests she was able to comendeer it for the evening.
The chill of the higher altitude is cut through by the roaring flames held within one of the braziers adorning the platform, which has since been pulled to the center. The ancient beast herself casts quite an intriguing figure upon his arrival, sitting cross-legged before the brazier, hunched over the fire without fear as she occassionally stirs some bubbling liquid within a pot in the center.
Only when he nears does she look up, bright optics rivaling the blazing coals and made even more prominant when set against the black markings of a soot that paint her face. "There you are. Your timing is perfect, Captain. We are nearly ready to begin. Please, sit." A warm smile greets him and a hand extends to her side.
Baffled but obliging as Chimera sets forth her very specific requests, Rodimus rolls up maybe a little late, but if Chimera says his timing is perfect-- well, maybe she accounted for his distractibility. Let's hope, anyway.
"Last time I was up this high, I was talking to one of the crew about the merits of throwing yourself off a cliff." There's probably some details and context Rodimus is eliding in there. He moves near to the brazier -- quite near, really; worryingly near -- and stands carelessly close to the flames. The hood of his alt-mode, bare of a badge, catches and throws the light back into her eyes. He grins up at her, gaze tracking over the soot. "Please tell me I get to rub that over my face, too. Drift always makes his facial markings look awesome and Minimus has his insignia but I just kind of have a face. You know?" He folds himself cross-legged on the ground next to her: surprisingly lithe for all the height and weight of his metal, even if his over-large feet for his knees up at a high angle.
"Thankfully there will be none of that today." Chimera muses softly with a small smirk and returns to the pot, giving it another stir before setting the spoon aside. His excitement for some facepaint draws out a low chuckle from her, the sound deep and booming with mirth in her chest when eyeing him. "You may, yes. Allow me.." She reaches to the fire without hesitation, but doesn't dip into it, instead swiping her fingertips along the inside of the firepit to cover them in soot.
Back to him, a large knuckle finds his chin to ease his face up, Chimera hunching near to gently touch over his complexion and paint some markings onto him. Something befitting a Prime, at least in her eyes. "...You are very brave, you know." She murmurs after a long few moments, optics a touch lower. "To remove your symbol. Many will not understand or accept, but perhaps they will, in time. Not all see the reasoning behind a sacrifice, at first."
YESSS. Rodimus leans forward with an eager flick of his spoiler, straining upright and toward Chimera. He lifts his chin at the touch of her knuckle, easily guided. His face scrunches at the first touch before he forces himself to relax and go still, or else risk ruining the markings. His eyes dim rather than try to focus on her hand moving so close to his face only to online again with a startled brightness as he looks to her. "I don't feel very brave about that. Mostly I feel kind of terrified, like I threw myself off of that cliff and now I have to figure out how to stick the landing. Only I don't know how big the cliff is or what the bottom's like."
"But you were curious of what the bottom would be like, so you jumped anyway, no matter the outcome. ..Bravery is not doing something without fear, Rodimus. It is doing it despite the fear." Dimmer optics look to his, aged wisdom meeting youthful boldness. "Your war shaped, created, and destroyed many of the lives we see today. You would be changing the way some view their entire existence. It is an uphill battle in itself, what you seek to do, but I share your faith. What lies beyond will be better than what is behind, so do not stop trying." A soft thrum has since entered her words, carrying from the quiet purr in her throat, while smiling kindly to him and withdrawing.
"But we shall speak of that later. We have questions that need answering.." Chimera straightens and turns back to the fire and takes the pot off of it, pouring its steaming contents into a large, weighty cup that was sitting at her other side. Dense like stone and polished to a smooth, shiny surface, the outside has been carved with strange symbols only ligable to those with knowledge of Primal Vernacular. In Rodimus' hands it's more like a bowl and its contents don't appear terribly appetizing with the heavy, herbal smell and opaque, deep purple coloration.
"Now.. Rodimus of Nyon." Her voice takes on a stronger tone, as if calling to something beyond. "Speak your wishes to the aether. Let it be known what you seek from within and beyond and drink deep of the elixir." She, of course, adds on the end in a more regular tone, some cheek to her smile. "And yes, all of it." As if implying he won't want to at first. Which he may not, since it'll task awful.
Rodimus turns his head to the side and tries to hide most of the face he makes as he gets a good whiff of the bowl's contents. He traces the symbols on the bowl's surface without any apparent recognition despite the fact that he's written in that with this very same hand, then lifts it. "--ugh. This better be worth it." He looks at the surface of the drink, hesitating, like maybe he's thinking one thing but saying--, "I want to know about Unicron. I want to know how he was defeated. How we can stop him." With that, he tilts his head back, and he drinks--
<FS3> Rodimus rolls Fortitude: Failure. (4 1 1 1 1 5 3 5 4)
-only to gag midway through, "SERIOUSLY, WHAT DID YOU PUT IN THIS," and draw a few heaving ventilations before he finishes it.
Clearly Chimera has done this with other people before as she hovers hand over her mouth and stifles a chuckle at his total disgust of the concoction. "That, I am afraid, is a secret." She retrieves the bowl and sets it aside before directing him further. "It acts swiftly, so all you need do is relax. I will be here watching over you, Rodimus, so you need not worry.."
The elixir sits like a rock in his tank, but after a minute its effects will start to kick in. A feeling of pins and needles will overtake the ends of his appendages at first before turning numb and a crawling sensation works up along his spinal strut. Once at his helm a warmth will begin to spread through it, branching through the networks of fuel lines and making the world suddenly turn sluggish and distort visually. It may all be unsettling, but it swiftly ends when a curtain is seemingly drawn over the world and everything goes black.
Ah, yes. Just relax. As the ancient, Mortilus-worshipping monster watches over you. Rodimus actually seems to find this awfully easy, even before the drugs start hitting his system. "Just don't keep any recordings if I do anything stupid, okay?" he says, tipping a wink at Chimera as he slowly vents a long exhalation. He steadies the cycle of his ventilations as he waits -- and when the first pins and needle tickle begins to crawl over his limbs, he twitches. He shudders, spoiler flicking as he shakes his head, trying to throw off the numbing sensation, and rolls his shoulders back as it begins to creep up his spine. For someone as physical as he is, there's a very real fear of losing his rooting in his body -- but the warmth that follows eases the panic before it can blossom, and blackness pulls him under almost gently. He slumps into an awkward pile of limbs.
Blackness threads through his awareness, whole and complete as the cloudy dark of the nebula. At first, the thread of dreams sputter and flash through Rodimus's dreaming mind: flashes of color and taste and scent, stripped of meaning, devoid of reality. A star's light begins in a flash across his mind and Rodimus stands bodiless in the center of its core.
Dust. Star-pocked black. Melting velvet smoldering beneath his wheels.
Orion Pax stands before him, huge and monstrous, a giant cannon hefted over his shoulder. He fires past Rodimus, and the detonation quakes the world.
Something is laughing. It might be the Anialus. It might be the universe.
He is about to be pulled apart by the gravity well of an exploding nova. The scatter of his thoughts is suddenly focused, intent, on his impending mortality. The world is screaming noise.
His whole frame is swathed in silken softness. All is quiet but for the distant pianissimo hiss of the cymbals.
"What, that's it?" Rodimus says, his voice small in the dark of his own thoughts. Against the dark, he strikes a light, flames burning from within to cover his frame in a halo of fire. "Okay, I get it: find Optimus, save the universe, blah blah, whatever."
The blackness coats him, twining around his flames. Soot falls from him, and the soot becomes more stardust, shining in an open pattern of glitter across asphalt. Trees whisper a breeze beside the road. Rodimus sees his own alt mode speed past him in a shriek of burning rubber. Ghosts follow him, hazy and insubstantial. The ghost of Optimus Prime. The ghost of Prowl.
Then he is flames in a field of flames, surrounded by other burning figures. Strangers are dancing around him, Cybertronians coated in orange-red flame with shining capes of blue and white fire.
The Lost Light is on fire, careening as a burning meteor through the atmosphere of some planet's starpocked night.
Rodimus stands before himself. He holds up a single fingertip to his own lips, and smiles as he says, "Nope."
On the mountaintop, while Chimera stays sentinel, Rodimus's frame is not wholly still. Even passed out, could you expect him to hold entirely still?
Drawing back from the mirror touch, Rodimus looks to the chest of his other self and then back up again. He seems stricken by the parade of ghosts, by the Lost Light's fiery descent: he's made uneasy, with the almost-boast of his earlier words rotted to silence. He reaches out for his own shoulders and pushes.
The doppelganger falls away. The thrust of Rodimus's push sends him flying. He hurtles backwards and vanishes. The world goes white, cloaked in snow. Whorls of snowflakes surround him, hissing and melting against the heat of his metal skin in little puffs of fresh steam. He is altogether alone, and a crackling ice begins to coat his frame as the cold grows more and more intense.
For some reason, his desk is there, sitting in the snow, scattered with the usual detritus. It's his old desk, the familiar doodle map etched into its surface beneath the general mess.
"Oh, come on!" Rodimus grouses, whining about the cold under his breath. A twitch becomes a shiver becomes a chatter, and he just might be moving toward the fire back there in the real world, too, as he moves to find shelter from the wind against his desk so that he can ignite again and burn the ice to vapor.
The ice melts. The snow melts all around him. The desk floats in a warm, lapping sea, sails billowing above it. Now Rodimus is riding it, adrift amidst leaping sea mammals.
"Fragging organics," Rodimus mutters, "stop splashing." He flattens on the desk in a puddle that may be a bit literal around the edges, his sense of self wavering under the influence of whatever was in that drink. He offlines his gaze and allows himself to drift. And maybe drip.
At first he drifts in the warmth, and the quiet, in a heavy sea salt air that surrounds him. At length he does melt; he melts into the desk, and he becomes an oozing fluid, orange and red and magenta, shining through the patterns of the map.
Then he wakes. He's on the mountaintop with Chimera. His fingers have dug deep into the dirt beside him.
Rodimus sort of ... pats his face, checking to make sure it's all actually there and he's not a puddle. Dust falls over his face and shoulders, and he brushes it all away as he straightens and looks around for Chimera. "Am I ... actually ... awake?" HOW CAN HE TELL.
If he's not awake, Chimera has somehow joined his hallucination, because she can definitely hear that.
Chimera has only moved so much as to lay him out neatly and not as the pile he'd passed out in. The beastfemme sits at his side, hovering and ever watchful of any signs of something gone wrong. When he finally awakens he'll find her hand at his back to help steady him as he sits up, her optics squinted up to compliment the smile warming her face. "You are, worry not. You were not out for long. Tell me, what did you see?" While Chimera awaits an answer, the elixir in his tank will start to feel increasingly unpleasant as it makes his tank feel as if it's rolling.
"I--rrgh." Rodimus holds his hand up and lurches off to the side to purge his tanks, the nausea hitting nearly as hard and as fast as the mixture itself. His fingers curl to form fists, and he knuckles down in the dirt as he braces, clearing his tanks of the last. It's not pretty. His ventilation has a hint of a rasp before he finally says, "Optimus. I think we need to find Optimus." He sounds almost resigned to it. "Or else everyone and everything burns."
Rodimus's fingers have to be drawn out of the earth in order to fist. He has, in his sleep, etched shapes deep into the dirt.
Chimera doesn't appear phased when Rodimus pauses to void his tanks of the strange liquid, which appears to already be curdling. She simply keeps a neutral, well meaning expression and rubs his back. "If you will permit me, I will buy you a drink to make up for having to ingest that." She comments softly with a half-smirk, though perks at his mention of Optimus. "Is that so..? Mh, such visions through this manner have yet to prove false, so perhaps your are correct. But, while your mind was adrift, your body appeared to keep busy..." She gestures down to the etchings he clawed into the earth while passed out, having watched him draw.
"Ugh, please. I feel like I need something strong to scorch that from my tanks." Rodimus flops back down into a seat next to Chimera, leaning into the touch of her hand. The resignation fades, soothed away by the gentle touch to be replaced by determination. Fine. Whatever. If they have to find Optimus to save the galaxy, he'll go and find Optimus. Somehow. "What do you mean, busy?" he asks, following her gaze. He rubs the dirt from his knuckles as though only just noticing the way it has worked into his joints.
The shapes he has etched ... they're not just shapes, they are characters. He has written something in the dirt, carving deep grooves -- slightly obscured by his own motion. The characters have an archaic, arcane quality, as though delved from some deep forgotten remnant, but they're numbers, which remain more or less constant over time.
If there was only proper punctuation marks, they might look like system coordinates.
"It was curious, watching you dig this out while unconcious. I have been attempting to puzzle it out since, but these numbers could mean a variety of things. A time, a place, a phrase in numbers.." Chimera's expression creases in thought while her helm tilts at the etchings. "Does it bring anything to mind? Even if so, we should record this for further research."
Staring at the shapes -- characters, numbers -- he has carved into the dirt, Rodimus is blankly uncomprehending. "I have no idea what that's supposed to be." Well, he probably knows they are numbers. He snaps a still and files it, then stretches up to his feet. "Probably something to do with Optimus, I'd guess. I saved a shot. So how about we head down at get that drink, eh?" He bounces on his toes, seeming to shake the vision off as easily as he would a glancing blow, and then reaches out to take Chimera by the arm. "Come on, you owe me. That thing was vile." Mysteries of the universe solved, he drags her to descend the mountain and rejoin the rest of the colony.