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2018-08-20 Say It

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Say It
Date 2018/08/20
Location Tarantulas' Citadel - Noisemaze
Participants Prowl
NPCs Tarantulas
Scene GM Koi
Summary Tarantulas offers a tempting choice and reveals plans to exchange technology for his beloved muse.

Prowl and Minimus are together for only so long. Long enough for Tarantulas to repair himself completely. He arrives looking fresh, the fur along his body looking rather extra fuzzy and fluffy, and his armor doesn't even look freshly welded. He's just... Better. And he takes no time in divvying up his prey- he'll come back for Minimus, right now he has his prize.

And he has so much to show Prowl!

Prowl gets a nice blanket of webbing, piggybacking on Tarantulas's back as he leads the tour around his citadel. Occasionally they'll pass a window, showing the swirling, technicolor Noisemaze outside- as if to press on Prowl just how trapped he is. He shows Prowl everything. It's not just weapons-- its shields, its plans, its models of stations, its designs for cities and ships. Ships, Tarantulas is happy to brag, that will cross galaxies faster than any quantum ship. Tch, quantum physics, how basic. He goes through each impossible thing in detail, delighted by his captive audience.

But even citadels are only so big. Only so much to show.

"--course Impetus is in my other lab. Still tweaking that one. Having some troubles callibrating for the levels of guilt one can feel- and then you must consider if feeling guilty makes you guilty and vice versa. But if Aequitas can manage, I'm sure their younger brother can too," Tarantula prattles, currenly in spider mode. The last part of his home is only accessible via webs. Because of course it is.

"Still, I keep all my best things here... We're almost done. Just a little to go- what did you think, Prowl? Cozy, hmm?" (edited)

Prowl is largely silent as he's given the tour. Every now and then he thrashes and twists before slumping against Tarantulas' fuzzy back. All of it is painfully impressive, and terribly haunting. This is what Tarantulas had been chipping away at, what he continued to work on, all this time. Prowl watches the dark ceiling pass above him, quiet still, when Tarantulas prods him for a response.

Tarantulas waits, still plodding along his web, until he's tired of it. It doesn't take long. It would seem, despite his jovial nature throughout the tour, he's growing... Rather aggravated. He comes to a stop, many legs balanced on delicate spidersilk and the only thing keeping them from plunging to a certain death. A leg reaches back to give Prowl a jostle. "Prowl? I asked what you thought, Prowl. You always have opinions on things, don't keep them to yourself. I can't improve without your input."

Prowl makes his own clipped noise of aggravation when he's jostled. "I'm not going to speak with you until you untie me from this mess, Mesothulas."

"Tarantulas," he corrects. "Tar-an-tul-as. I know you're not good with change- or names- but you can at least try! Don't know why you insist on this..." Tarantulas drops into mutterings about names and who's dead and who isn't and so on and so forth. It fades into whispers and then nothing, as he considers. Eight eyes inspect their whereabouts closely before he throws up his front two feet. "Fine."

Tarantulas transforms, slinging the bundled-up Prowl unto the web where several sections overlap. Making it the most stable, though no less precarious, place to be. Then he brings his own claws down and snaps the binding. He crouches, at ease on his own web. "There, untied. I'd like to point out I can just as easily retie you so behave. Now... Will you talk?"

Prowl remains atop his split cocoon, clinging to the threads on either side of him. He looks up and glares. "You don't need me. You've clearly found success in many experiments without my input. My ideas are just that. Ideas. I'm not a scientist."

Tarantulas snorts derisively, the mandibles around his mouth all flitting about with the noise. "I've only improved what's already been made. I'd hardly call that a success. The Noisemaze, on the other hand... I created a whole new dimension! Haha!" He leans forward, visor shining. "Not possible without you. Believe me! I've tried. I... Really tried, Prowl." He pauses, and then leans back again, the webbing bouncing just a little with every movement. "I tried so hard to forget you but it just... It just doesn't work out that way."

Prowl tries to lean away, only met with more web. "You know, we have mechs that help others forget. I can arrange something, if this is a matter of... your environment twisting your mind." He plucks a stray sticky strand from his wrist and returns his bland stare up at the multiple sets of eyes. "What's the plan here? Are you just going to keep me here forever? What of Minimus?"

"You'd like that, wouldn't you? Be convenient if I just forgot about us-- but no. I'll pass." Tarantulas begins to stand, pausing only to interject, "And my mind isn't twisted. Now come on." With a gesture, he begins traversing along his web to the other side. Its maybe a half a minute walk away-- don't look down, Prowl. "The plan? Well, it certainly didn't include that little nuisance. I was hoping you'd choose to stay here. After I showed you all I could really do... I guess he could be of some use before I throw him out. He punched through my carapace- its the least he could do."

Prowl slowly follows, balancing on precarious threads. "If you're in fact beholden to my choice, you won't touch him. But I get the sense that I really won't have a choice in this. You're mad, Mesothulas. Undeniably out of your mind." He pauses. "Us... Is Springer here?"

Tarantulas's fur bristles and he turns, stepping harshly on several threads to give Prowl a jiggle. "I am not mad! At least, not in the way you're wanting to use that word. Maybe you should stop repeating what you want to believe and just- Springer? Who..." Oh. "Ostaros... No. No, not yet. But we'll get him and then our whole family will be together. We can all be happy- but for real this time."

Tarantulas turns, strutting his way back towards the ledge of safety. "Thank you for that, by the way. I was really hoping for absolute misery and heartbreak. You always know how to deliver that, don't you." His voice turns into a growl at the end. One might think he doesn't mean his thanks at all.

"We're not going to be a happy together!" Prowl snaps, stopping sharply. "Take my abject betrayal as I sign that I don't want this! I don't want us! Can't you understand? My crew and I fought to kill you, you maniac!" This might not be "behaving", but Prowl's temper has been tripped.

Tarantulas steps onto solid ground, back turned to Prowl. "See, you did it again. 'Maniac.' 'Dangerous.' 'Mad.' I'm not crazy, Prowl. I just want what everyone else has. I fail to see how that makes me so bad. Bad enough for you to try and kill me."

"Tch," Prowl sneers, lingering on the web. "Your idea of a pleasant future isn't going to play out like you think it will. Where are you taking me?"

"I wanted to show you the last few things I have here. The most important thing," Tarantulas says, sounding distant. He hasn't moved. "And then I'm going to ask you a question. Can we at least do that, Prowl?"

Prowl grudgingly resumes his trek up to the ledge where Tarantulas is perched. "We? Who's we? You've done whatever you wanted thus far, so sure, whatever, ask your inane questions. Get more answers you don't like."

Tarantulas glowers down at Prowl, briefly, before leading the way. It's rather dark on this circular platform but lights flicker on in Tarantulas's presence, revealing a myraid of things under the shade of sickly green light. Shelves lined with containers of different arachnid species- someone has a favorite animal- and several counter spaces to work on. Scattered on one desk are papers with different theories and several are labelled 'Warren'. There's a large monitor that Tarantulas bring up, which has schematics for what appears to be his spider bio-disguise.

He continues to sweep across the platform, popping up tabels out of the ground. Different ideas boards- the most interesting one looks almost complete in all his research. By the look of some sketches, he's already started designing this 'Time Window' contraption. But, most interesting, most impressive, Is the massive swathe of crystal that comes out of the ground once he taps on the ground. Its contained within a pillar that rises and it shines the same sickly green as the lights.

Tarantulas looks exceptionally proud. "Go ahead," he says. "Ask what it is."

Prowl tries to remain guarded about what he absorbs in here, but the research on the Warren are too enticing to ignore. He tries to read quickly, until the time window catches his attention, and as he reaches to sort through the notes, Tarantulas showcases the giant glowing crystal. Prowl squints and cautiously steps towards it. "Fine. What is it?"

Tarantulas lays a hand on the glass protecting the crystal, leaning against it and letting the light run along his figure. "This citadel, this dimension-- all of my projects-- this is its power source!" He looks gleefully back at Prowl, hoping he can run the numbers on exactly how much power this source has. Its infinitely more than what any Autobots have.

"It's called Obtenteum! It can make the impossible obsolete!" Tarantulas sets a hand on Prowl's shoulder. "I remember when you told me that. I'll never forget, heh... Amazing, isn't it?"

Prowl wordlessly drifts towards the glass. "Obtenteum," he repeats, and doesn't even flinch when Tarantulas touches his shoulder. The sight taps all of his worst impulses. The world is numbers, and the numbers are clear before him.

"No. No, it... I just admitted everything. Every terrible thing I've ever done, to a mech I admire deeply. I'll have no part of this. None of it. I told you, I'm not engaging in your schemes."

Tarantulas grunts. 'Admires deeply'- tch! He spins Prowl towards him, holding both his shoulders as he leans down. "No schemes Prowl. None. Just listen to me... This- all of this- could be yours! Imagine: you wouldn't just oust Megatron from Cybertron, you could keep it safe forever. You could do better. You could rebuild it. You'd have everything you'd need." He gently taps Prowl's chin up. "And you'd have the greatest mind there to make sure it all goes just how you want."

"Just say the word," Tarantulas says. "Say it, and its yours. You'll be Cybertron's hero. So, what do you say?"

Prowl keeps his snarl as Tarantulas paints an alluring image. His twist features ease, then fade all together as he considers. He could. He could do all of that, with the threat of such power. He's certain of it. Tarantulas coaxes him all the more with compliments, and Prowl wavers in his resolve, helm tilted up. He swallows.

And then, Prowl turns, and his hands slide up over Tarantulas' chest... to wrap tightly around his neck. He can't strangle him, but he can sure try to crush. He steps forward, summoning every ounce of strength his servomusculature is capable of. "I -- am not doing this -- anymore."

The light in Tarantulas's visor narrows into a slit as Prowl attempt to... Murder him? Poorly. But still. Murder him. "You ruined my life!" He suddenly roars. "You took me away from all I knew just to make what you wanted. And when I did that- after you filled my head with compliments and lies!- you threw me away! Erased me! And when I returned, your instinct was to blow me up! Is it never enough? Why am I not enough?"

Finally having enough of Prowl's crimping his neck cables, Tarantulas stands up straight and strikes Prowl with a swift uppercut across his face, claws dragging over the metal and into the socket of one optic. "Feel bad for all those lives you took? Well, what about mine?! YOU'VE NEVER SAID SORRY!"

And then, quick as a whip, spit running down his mandibles and energon down his fingers, Tarantulas collects himself. He reaches out to hold Prowl with his still clean hand. "I just-- Just say it Prowl. And things can be right. I'll let Minimus go. Everything I have will go to you. And we can move on. Do more things like Ostaros. Good things. Just... One more time, Prowl. One more. And think carefully. What. Do. You. Say?"

"I said enough! I told you to stop your experiments! I told you!" Prowl hisses, and gets a nice swipe to the face. The blue glass of his optic shatters and falls at his feet, and he staggers backwards, clutching his face. "You're wrong. You're wrong..." He's in Tarantulas' grasp again, and immediately attempts to wrest free. "FRAG YOU!" is his carefully considered response to Tarantulas' question. Apparently he's not too worried about Minimus.

Tarantulas's grip on Prowl goes from steadying and comforting to angry and tight. And then he throws Prowl away. "Then you leave me with no choice!" He transforms, size growing so he can spin Prowl up again. "If you're not going to apologize for what you've done, then I'm not going to feel sorry when I call the Quintessons," he growls, fuming. "I'm not going to regret a thing as I carve my happy ending from this Primus-forsaken universe!"

Prowl can't catch himself in time and falls to his back with a grunt. He begins backing away as Tarantulas transforms and grows, frantically looking around the lab for a makeshift weapon. Then he freezes, looking up. "What business do you have with the Quintessons!?"

Tarantulas grabs Prowl in his moment of stillness, wrapping him quickly in a coccoon once more. "You truly don't listen to anything I say, Prowl. I told you, I don't work for Megatron. Quintessons are my benefactors. And in exchange for a few things- they'll..." He stops, slows. Hesitates. And then he gets fired up- No remorse, just like he said. "They'll give me you."

"What things? What are you- grah!" Prowl thrashes hard enough to get his hand stuck outside of of the cocoon layers, but it gets wrapped up with everything else. "They sold us! Enslaved us! What are you giving them?" He renews his futile struggling until he tires himself out.

"Why should I care?" Tarantulas asks as he finishes up Prowl's cocoon. "Why should I care when no one cares about me... But not for long. I can't wait to know what it's like." He strings Prowl up from the ceiling, letting him just dangle there. Then he transforms back into root mode. He walks over the his monitor from earlier, turning it around for Prowl to see. And now that he has all the more time than before to view it, Prowl will notice its not a schematic of Tarantulas's spider mode. Its a different kind of spider.

"They want my Chimeracon process. And you and I are going to give it to them. You'll need a good way to get around here in the Noisemaze, afterall." Tarantulas shoulders rise and fall, and then they stay downtrodden. Tired, disappointed. "I'll give them whatever they want. This will be a good start, at least."

Prowl's optics widen so wholly that his empty socket sparks. Welp, too late to bargain. Little else to do but protest, loudly, and berate, and curse Tarantulas up and down and tell him he's a fool and it's a trap and he's absolutely crazy. He falls limp and quiet, eventually, and Tarantulas will probably have a difficult time eliciting any response after that.

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