2018-03-16 Two for One
From Transformers: Lost and Found
|Two for One|
|Plot||Artifacts of the Knights of Cybertron|
|Summary||Swivel has a solo quest and finds a new recruit.|
Once again, a hushed calm fell over the dunes. It was like an ocean of sand, complete with wavey rippling patters in the many particles that made up the sand. For a moment all was still in contrast to the raging sandstorm which had passed. Until one of the smally mounds was disturbed from within. It started with a flailing hand reached out, and soon, a small femme managed to dig her way out. Her colours were faded, and sand continued to pour out from the holes in her hub caps. That was the third time she'd been buried on this planet. But all in all, the mission wasn't too terrible. Nothing had shot at her or tried to tear her to pieces. So the little femme got out her scanner, attempting to reorient her progress in finding that artifact.
When Swivel had received the mission to go on a mission to retrieve an artifact from Varmego 7, she was apprehensive. But her greater fear of showing unwillingness or insubordination caused her, instead, to eagerly accept and assure she'd get it done. And thus she'd hopped a spacebridge to the desolate planet, dearly hoping not to find anyone or anything hostile on the other side.
The only hostile thing Swivel had encountered was the environment. But that was something she did not overly mind. Swivel blinks at the readout. She could have swore it was pointing her in another direction. But then, perhaps she got turned around in the sandstorm. Kicking off the last of the sand (a futile action), Swivel begins to wander in the direction of the artifact.
Varmego 7 clearly is not a place welcoming to visitors, even now as Swivel digs herself out the harsh winds whip sand into the air and hammer her frame. Its relentless but seems an actual storm isn't about to start just yet, best to move before it does.
The signal itself is strange, seeming to never get closer the further she goes or even- as she has begun to notice- completely change the direction it is located. For now it seems to be stationary, signal getting closer the further she walks. In the distance, she can see the silhoette of... something...
A silhouette that isn't a slopy hill is certainly something that causes just a momentary thrill for the femme. It could be something hostile. Or a landmark. Or a hostile landmark. Hmmm. Hopefully not. Swivel looks down at her scanner, then back up at the silhouette and begins to approach cautiously. However she keeps track of all dunes in her vicinity big enough to hide behind, or even inside of, should trouble arise.
As she approaches, about 100 meters away the silhouette sharply moves. Its form whips and swirls as it turns to face her direction, a sharp glint of something shining in the glaring sun before the figure moves. It begins to make a beeline towards her, moving oddly as its form still whirls around it.
When the form moves, Swivel freezes in her tracks. She glances down at the scanner which has been showing inconsistencies. She then looks up at the whirling form, and begins to wonder if THAT is the reason. Swivel glances at the closest dune and considers diving into it. Though she doubts she could dig herself a hiding spot quick enough, and it would leave her extremely vulnerable while she tried. Instead she just finds herself backing away even as the thing approaches. Should she get out a weapon and prepare to defend herself? But what if whatever it is ISN'T hostile? It might think she's the hostile one? She can't... she can't afford to provoke anything. So instead Swivel puts her empty, dusty palms out in a placating manner, readying herself to turn tail and run if it comes down to a confrontation.
Swivel surrenders and the figure seems to hesitate, pausing as she throws up her palms to try and placate it. When it moves again, it seems to be with caution as it moves slower but the way its form whips around doesn't change.
The reason becomes strikingly obvious as it gets even closer. It isn't some mystertious figure approaching her but a mech with a large cloak whipping around his form from the wind- obscuring most of his frame and lending to the frightening appearance from a distance. He seems to be speaking, if the calming motion of hands is to be believed, but the howling winds obliterate any sound that may reach her.
Swivel strains to keep track of all the movement, trying to discern whether it is time to try and get moving. Although her hands are up to signal she isn't a threat, she isn't going to stay still and take any hits that might be coming. But none come. Yet. Swivel distractedly watches the movement of the cape whipping around, perhaps just a bit relieved it's only fabric in the wind. She then tries to make out what she can of his body language. Is... is he trying to communicate with her. Swivel cautiously approaches a few more steps and then stops again, still keeping her hands out, as much as she'd rather be using them to shield her optics from the current conditions. She'd try to call out, but she's doubtful she could be heard. Instead she just watches the mech, particularly any hand motions. He might know where shelter could be found - somewhere out of this wind.
Slowly she can hear it, the mech approaching as the wind hits a lull. His words are cut off, but the meaning manages to get across from the little she can make out, "-sy there, mech. What are ye doin' out 'ere?" She can finally get a good look at him as he watches her in confusion: worn paint, visor, faceplate, and weirdly enough four legs.
Finally making out some of what the mech is saying, Swivel lowers her arms, cupping her hands around her mouth instead. This isn't just to try and help her project, but also to try and deter flying particulates from entering her mouth. Ick. If this keeps up she is going to seek higher ground - as she learned the hard way already that standing in the lee of the dunes just ends in getting buried. "I'm searching for something important!" Best not to go into too many details at first. Swivel holds up a hand over her mouth while the other digs into her subspace to bring out the artifact scanner, glancing down at it, and then back at the large ... er.... four legged mech. Well. She's seen some odd frames since joining the Lost Light, so it doesn't seem as odd to her as it might have several years ago.
Confusion is written all over the mech, obvious in the way his steps falter- feet dragging in the sand- and helm cocks to the side, "Out 'ere?" A derrisive snort and he takes a few more thumping steps closer, "I don' think yer gonna find anything too interestin' 'ere, sweetspark. Nothin' but sand for miles, and when yer over those miles ye get the joys of seein' rocks." Exciting.
<FS3> Swivel rolls Pathfinding: Good Success. (1 1 5 8 2 1 7)
Swivel keeps looking between the large mech and the artifact locator. Why is it spinning like that? She shakes it a bit, wondering if somehow it had taken damage from the sandstorm. She then brings it up to the side of her helmet, as if trying to hear any humming or rattling or noises that might indicate a problem. Yeah. That's some high tech diagnostics there. She then stares down at it in puzzlement again before looking up at the quadropedal mech. For a moment her optics squint. "Oh yeah? Nothing interesting out here?" Swivel tilts her head to the side. "You seem pretty interesting, if you don't mind my saying so." Is it possible this mech already has the artifact? She's seen compasses and other navigational instruments spin like this before when too close to an objective. But is asking right out going to get answers? She won't know if she doesn't try, as he doesn't seem distrustful of her - just confused. "I'm looking for an artifact. You wouldn't happen to have come across something that just sort of... drew you to it?"
The mech crosses his arms as he watches her, visor dimming and putting a front leg over the other in imitation of a casual lean. The wind picks up again and he pulls the hood over his helm down further, preventing wind and grit from cracking against his face, "Flattery will get ye nowhere but it will 'elp." Rocking forward, he looks at the instrument in her hands as she questions him, "Somethin' that drew me in..." Yes. But how does she know that? "Depends on what ye might mean by tha'. Lots of things get me attention." His stance goes from easy to on edge, light of visor narrowing suspiciously.
Without much protection, Swivel is forced to just bring up her sturdy forearm to shield her face as best she can. She tries her best to peer out from beneath this crude shield to watch the mech's reaction. Ooops. Perhaps she should have tried the sneakier route. But then, subterfuge was not necessarily her forte. Swivel seems to cringe and draw back from the mech's gaze. "I'm not here to take it FROM you if you have." Swivel insists. Time to just... fumble through this. "Not that I really could. I mean. Look at me. I'm small. I'm unarmed. And I'm not used to these conditions. You've got every advantage over me." Swivel smiles as disarmingly as she can. See? Look how pathetic she is. Surely she's not a threat.
The mech stares, arms still laid across his chassis, as Swivel tries to explain herself. Its not very impressive, but he chooses not to imform her of that fact. If she isn't already aware that may be a harsh blow to any ego the femme might have. He's blunt- some might say harsh- to a fault but he isn't a MONSTER. He steps forward, swivelling his hindquarters around the femme until he is standing behind her and blocking the wind that roars across the landscape. Bending, he lets his frame drop to the ground with a poof of sand and props an elbow against a raised knee, "Alrigh', alrigh', ease up. Why do ye want this thing...if I were to say I 'ad it."
Swivel watches the mech with some caution as he repositions himself, but when it becomes apparent that he is using himself to sheild her from the buffeting sand in the wind, she smiles brightly. "Thank you." She chirps. Swivel lowers her forearm, idly brushing away from of the loose particles. "We need the artifacts to fight forces of..." Swivel really doesn't like to use the word 'evil' even considering everything that Unicron and the Harbingers were responsible for. "...destruction. Whole planets have been ravaged. And it needs to stop."
The mech listens, hand flying up to point at her as she explains why they are looking to find these 'artifacts', "Wait a spell. Is this about tha' slag goin' on with the planet eater? Tha' fragger has 'alf me team scared strutless." Especially since they get so little news about it all the way out there.
A small squeak emits from Swivel and she lurches back defensively when the mech's arms swings out. Oh. He's just pointing. That's okay. Swivel timidly peers over her arms which she had thrown in front of her defensively. Slowly, and feeling just a little silly, she lowers them. "Yes! Yes the planet eater! We need the artifacts to deal with the planet eater! But if you already have it... well... um..." Swivel isn't sure exactly what the protocol is for this situation. "Well, um... guess you maybe should kinda of maybe come with me back to the ship and sort this out."
Pausing as Swivel flinches, the mech puts his hands up again as he motions for her to relax. He's not going to hurt her. Slowly, as to not statle her for a third time, he pulls something out of his subspace. Its a spyglass, metal dented and glass cracked. The scanner goes crazy as it is revealed, "...I'm guessin' this is wha' its lookin' for. I don' really know how this piece of junk might 'elp... How's this: Bring me some proof tha' this really is wha's goin' on and I'll come." He lurches to a stand, rocking dangerously as he shifts to get his footing on the sifting sand. Not really a way to do that slowly.
Swivel relaxes. A little. She's a little on edge when he goes to pull something out, but when it isn't a weapon she seems to perk up, peering intently at the spyglass with interest. And yup. Scanner goes wild. That's confirmation enough. Well, for her. Listening to the mech, it seems he needs more convincing. Swivel glances down for a moment or two, but then nods her head. "Okay! I understand! Really. I mean. Some random person showing up and saying LET'S GO FIGHT THE THING isn't really convincing. I mean... oh dear me! How rude! I never even introduced myself! My name is Swivel." Swivel mutters something that sounds like 'dummy' quietly to herself. "I'll drum up something more convincing! Um... but... uh... er... how will I find you again?"
Chuckling, the mech jabs a thumb towards himself as the other rests on one of the wheels near his hip, "Traction. There's an old mine a few miles north of here. I'll meet ye there."
Swivel bobs her head. "Traction. Old mine north of here. Got it." With these confirmations said out loud and commited to memory, Swivel turns away, radioing for a spacebridge. She'll need to either bring someone with a better grasp (and a bit more confidence might not hurt) of the facts or some sort of material proof. Swivel does her best to not consider this a failure but rather just a delay. She did locate the artifact after all, which is something.
Proof was brought, an agreement was made, now all that'd left is to leave through the spacebridge. Anytime soon. Traction will go through it.... n... He can't bring his feet to move. Watching the swirling vortex of the spacebridge, Traction keeps telling himself he will step through but can't seem to make the thought connect to his frame. He's never been off Varmego, there's no telling what could be through there!
Feet stamping nervously, he glances back to Swivel with embarrassment, "Uh.. think ye could give me a shove?"
Swivel had been watching Traction carefully, waiting for him to step through first. And waiting. And waiting. And she began to worry that perhaps he was changing his mind. She had been so relieved that she'd accomplished her mission with relative ease - and suddenly she was faced with perhaps another hurdle. The little femme was beginning to fidget until Traction spoke up.
"Uh... what?" Swivel peers at the larger and likely sturdier mech. The femme glances between the space bridge and the mech, glancing that embarrassed expression. Was he stuck? She glances at all four of his feet. Probably not. She peers at him again, puzzling over the request and the expression. "Do you... really want me to shove you? If you are worried about it being safe to step through, well, I came here via space bridge, so it's not a swirling vortex of absolute doom." She won't promise that it's safe. She's heard stories.
"That's not-" Traction clenches his fists awkwardly, trying hard not to look at Swivel or the portal before him, "Jus'- lil.. nervous is all. Jus' do it."
To say Swivel is astonished that he is serious about this request would be an understatement. "If... if you insist." But if it will mean she completes her mission, then she'll do it. Swivel cautiously walks behid the mech, just staring at his unusual hind quarters. The fact he HAS hindquarters. Haunches. Okay. Swivel backs up, tests the traction in the ground so as not to slip and fall flat on her face, and then gives a running start, trying to ram Traction through.
Traction is stiff as Swivel moves around him, visor locked on the bridge. He can hear her backing up, readying herself. She takes a running start and collides with the centaurian mech's back legs- normally this wouldn't phase him, his amica has done it many times in the past, but its just the jolt he needs to force his frame to move. A burst of light, a strange sensation and suddenly he's met with a whole new place like he's never before seen. This is either going to end very well or very badly, but right now he's just amazed.