2018-05-09 Science with Bugs
From Transformers: Lost and Found
|Science with Bugs|
|Summary||Well, a bug. Waspinator counts as a scientist after this, right?|
The good thing about getting to Cybertron ahead of the true final moment is that they can do some setup and research beforehand. Wheeljack has been working madly since before they set down, getting their equipment all ready, testing the theory behind the machinery, and the other members of the Science Division have been doing much the same. Not all of the prep-work can be done from the Lost Light, though, or even from Tempo. With his fellow scientists all wrapped up in other projects, though, Wheeljack has had to get creative in finding an assistant. Creative, in this case, meaning asking whoever he found in the hallway if they can lend him a hand, until someone said yes. Poor Waspinator.
Right now, though, Wheeljack has chosen a particular place to start the exploration. He leads Waspinator into the caverns that are his current interest, both of them carrying equipment. "So, you've seen Vector Sigma before, right?" he asks, turning his helm to look at Wasp with bright fins.
Waspinator wouldn't be able to tell anyone how he ended up in this position... even if he actually knew he probably still wouldn't be able to explain it. One moment he's walking down the hall to get energon- delicious energon-, the next he's being dragged away from his wonderful goal by a scientist voluntelling him to do something he speaks about far too quick for the bug's dim brain to catch. Sweet energon held cruelly from his grasp for yet another day by events, or in this case excitable scientists, far beyond his ability to control!
Weighed down ,both metaphorically and literally, Waspinator bleakly skitters after Wheeljack in his alt mode- being specifically told to change forms so he could carry more equipment. Wazzpinator izz a wazzp not a pack mule!, he had wanted to say but it barely even made it past the surface of his processor before the thought was brushed aside. "...No Wazzpinator hazz never-" A screech comes from the bug and two legs are raised in a vain attempt to shield himself as Wheeljack whips around, blinding the bug's sensitive optics with the searing light of his personality... and head fins, mostly the head fins.
Wheeljack jumps back himself, yelping in surprise at the sudden screech and flailing on Waspinator's part. The scanner in one hand comes up like a shield. It probably won't help that his fins light up with an even brighter flash in his alarm, filling the dim space of the cavern with even more bright light. "What is it?" Wheeljack asks, alarmed. He turns away from Waspinator to start surveying the cavern, unintentionally sparing Waspinator from the glow of the fins. "You didn't see a scraplet or something, did you?"
"Wazzpinator not zzee anything now!" Its like looking into the a dual star system's suns! It is still there even when he offlines his optics! The scientist's glow practically burned into his every conscious thought, Waspinator dares to bring one optic back online, "Lightbot zztop zzwinging helm around!" They could be defined as a weapon of war if he turned them up any higher!
"What?" Wheeljack, of course, immediately turns back toward Waspinator in confusion. "Are your optics not-- oh!" It takes the second thing Waspinator says to get Wheeljack to realize what he means, and he catches himself before he can let the flins flicker in brightness at his understanding explanation. "Oh. I completely forgot about that. I was using them for light... Seems like your optics work just fine in the dark, maybe?" he asks, looking over Waspinator. "Sorry about that, I'll just use my headlights when I need to. And they're off now! Promise." True to his word, Wheeljack cuts the flickering of all indicators from his head fins.
Waspinator blinks his optics on and off rapidly as he adjusts back to good old darkness, relieved that the other mech hadn't blown something in his helm. "Wazzpinator can tell lightbot forgot." Its not so much he can see better as he likes to see, period. Cautious, hesitant in only the way Waspinator can be, the bug shuffles forward again as his wings twitch and flick against the weight keeping him grounded, "How much further to place?"
"Well, uh." There's no sheepish fin light, and with the faceplate Wheeljack can't exactly make a guilty expression, but he does an impressive job in conveying it in his tone. "I don't actually think I can get us all the way down there. The path to Vector Sigma seems... pretty variable. I'd like to think it might like me after a couple visits but that's no reason to get us potentially lost. I was just hoping to find some of the lower levels, closer to where it should be, and get some readings off of Vector Sigma's activity. Maybe leave a few transmitters, so we can see if and how Vector Sigma reacts to Unicron's approach." He pats the bag at his side, and nods to the ones Waspinator is carrying. "That's what those are for."
They are heading down to vector Sigma which likely won't let them in and has a chance of getting them lost. The chances of Waspinator getting his energon anytime soon are slowly fading away into the distance before his very optics. "If we can't get to Vector Zzigma then why izz Wazzpinator carrying all thizz zztuff? Can't lightbot juzzt zzcan it?" Transmitters can't be so large that it requires both of them to carry it!
"We don't need to get to Vector Sigma itself, don't worry," Wheeljack says. "We just need to get close enough to get a good read of the energy it and the planet are emitting! Theoretically we could do this from the surface, but I wanted to get a good signal." Wheeljack is clearly happy to continue rambling, heedless of the despair in Waspinator's voice. "And I can't just spend the next week down here scanning! There's so much to do in the Lost Light. Not that I'd mind really mappping out Vector Sigma once and for all, but that'll probably have to wait until there's no giant planet eating monster headed right toward us."
Waspinator stares at Wheeljack, mind and optics blank as he explains the reasoning for them trekking so far towards the planet's core. The logic is obvious and easy to understand, for anyone other than Waspinator. he lets the words wash over him like water, flow across his plating to drip straight back down to the floor where the ground eats those liquid words without him comprehending a bit of it, ".... How doezz Lightbot know when near Vector Zzigma if it doezzn't want uzz to find it?"
Wheeljack doesn't seem particularly bothered by the zoning out, as they keep moving. It may be harder to tell with his fins dimmed, but he also chatters along just fine, which has to mean he isn't too upset. He interrupts himself when Waspinator asks a question, glancing back (at least this time he remembers not to turn his headlights in the bugbot's direction). "That's what this is for!" he says, waving the scanner. "And speaking of, it looks like we're beginning to get close." Sure enough, the walls around them are transitioning from more natural hewn tunnels to something that looks a bit more... purposeful.
It may be obvious they are getting closer to Wheeljack, but Waspinator really doesn't see much difference. Not yet, at least. It all just looks like long expanses of cavernous tunnel, leading them forward into a near endless blackness. Normally thats just how Waspinator likes it but down here its a little unnerving. Also confusing as Wheeljack continues to ramble on about science and scans and things Waspinator doesn't even both to try and understand. Wheeljack makes some white noise if one zones out long enough. "... Wazzpinator will take Lightbox'zz word on that."
It will probably become clear around the next corner, when they come to a series of stairs. There's just the faintest tickling of something in the air, a feeling of weight and heaviness, but little more. "There we go!" Wheeljack says. He forgets himself, briefly, with one quick and excited flicker of his helm fins, but he at least manages to keep it dim. "What do you say, should we set up at the bottom of the stairs?"
Waspinator's antenna twitch as that something ghosts over his senses, a whisper of some otheerly weight that leans down on his frame.
Waspiantor doesn't like it.
With no going back now, Waspinator simply nods at Wheeljack- taking his suggestion more as a command as he descends the stairs.
The sensation doesn't get more intense, at least. Wheeljack even basks in it, as they start approaching the bottom of the stairs. He's been down here a few times, after all, and one to get rid of Quintesson influence. He doesn't have much other than good to associate it with. "Okay," he says, when they finally reach the bottom of this particular set of stairs. "Have you ever set up sensors before?"
Waspinator drops his bags on the floor with a loud clank as they reach the bottom, unworried about the surely delicate equipment inside as he transforms back to robot mode. "No.. but Wazzpinator hazz had zzensors put on him?" Surely being outfitted with sensors one immdiately yanked off is nearly equal to the process of setting them up for observations!
"Well... I guess techincally if you think of the planet like a living being..." Wheeljack starts to say. Then, maybe catching the conversational rabbit hole he's on the edge of diving into, he shakes his helm and sets down his own bags, much more gently than Waspinator had. He starts rummaging through, to pull out a little device. "Here, I'll show you. It's pretty simple. Just find a good patch of wall, or ceiling, or floor, hit the little button on the underside, and then stick it on. Like this!" He does so, on the flat top of one of the stairs. A little green light briefly flashes on the device when the button is hit, then regularly flickers after it's placed.
Waspinator peers over Wheeljack's shoulder as he demonstrates, a small sigh of relief escaping through his mandibles as he sees its not as complex as he feared. Now if there had been three steps, that would be pushing it! "Ok... Wazzpinator can do that." Taking up one of the sensors, Waspinator flits across the cavern to a wide expanse of wall near the corner. With a careful hand, Waspinator gently prods the button on the sensor to watch as it blinks to life with a wince waiting. Another sigh, as the device doesn't blow up in his hands like he would expect from the universe. An arm swings back, a rush of air, and the device is harshly stabbed into the wall where it cheerily blinks that little light.
Satisfied, Waspinator picks up another, "....What doezz Lightbot think he will find?"
"I'm not entirely sure!" Wheeljack says, with more enthusiasm than that answer deserves. He watches as Waspinator sets up the first of his sensors, then nods and turns to his own set. Waspinator's clearly got the hang of it, he doesn't need more supervising, right? And he'll keep rambling, too. "Hopefully, we can see how the energy of Vector Sigma reacts to Unicron, and if it changes after we shoot Tempo's gun at him. It may not come in handy, but the more we know about Vector Sigma and Unicron, the better."
In another device goes with a satisfying crunch of rock, Waspinator quickly growing more confident with each object that is places. Its easy! What was he ever worried about? The big about seeing how Vector Sigma reacts to Unicron? That he doesn't really get but lets the other ramble away.
There will be plenty more rambling to be had, as Wheeljack works his way through his package of devices. He works his way up and down the hallway, and though he isn't particularly tall, he tries to vary their placement. When he's done, he starts to turn to pick up his scanner, giving a satisfied hum. "Well, that's all of mine. How are you doing, Waspinator?"
Waspinator lets his final scanner sink home. Wings buzzing with pride and mandibles twitching, Waspinator turns to look at Wheeljack. Confusion slaps him over the helm as he realizes Wheeljack is no longer behind him but far down the hall. Confused but still beaming, Waspinator steps aside to show his wonderful and excellent work. The wall is messily filled with sensors, all buzzing and flicking as they do their work.
They are also messily arranged in a strange pattern taking up an entire 2 square feet of wall space.
It's probably for the best Wheeljack doesn't have a face, and he's not using his fins right now. His reaction to the little block of sensors Waspinator is so proudly displaying could be anything like this! He's just... thoughtfully looking over Waspinator's work, is all. Deciding what to say.
In the end, Wheeljack just... ends up nodding. "Looks like they're all on," he says, encouragingly. "All that's left is getting a scan of the area before we leave, and... I think I probably owe you a drink for all your help. What do you say?"
If its possible for Waspinator to puff up any more, he would. As is, his wings seem to hitch a bit higher before glancing back around the tunnel. The fact that Wheeljack has arranged his so scattered and straight completely escapes the bug, flying staight over his helm like many other obversations many others might notice. "Wazzpinator izz ok with that."
"Okay then! Time to get scanning," Wheeljack says. And he'll do just that. And if the scanning appears to linger on that wall for a bit to get a picture or two, well... that's just a part of the scientific process, isn't it? Discovering something new, through trial and error.