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Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

The local Solar System. From the Sun to Earth's orbit and the Moon. And from there all the way into the outer regions of the system beyond Neptune and the dwarf planets beyond it.

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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Thu Aug 23, 2012 10:14 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
Wheeljack’s Lab

Tracer kept a light hold on Smokescreen’s waist while the diversion expert responded to her concerns about Wheeljack and the engineer’s capability to replicate the narcotic. She knew ‘Jack was able to perform miracles but something like this…something that has nothing to do with his field of expertise…it had the potential to blow up in their faces…figuratively and literally.

The blue and white femme let out a low sigh as she cast her gaze over to Smokescreen who was still holding the vial securely in his hand.

Tracer moved her focus from the mech that had risked his life to save her from herself to the vial that caused all of her problems.

In the brief moments she focused on the container she recalled her life before she met Oil Slick…before the addiction. The time she spent to find a way…any way…to become like everyone else…to be normal. It was during the hard times that she remembered those times, but now she realized that it was getting harder and harder to remember everything.

She pressed her lips into a tight thin line as she brought one particular memory to the forefront of her processor. It was before the Syk…before the attempts to find help. Unable to get up…nearly paralyzed by the depression. Unable to function like everyone else. There was nothing…there was no one…she was trapped in a body and cursed with deteriorating mental functions.

Tracer shook her head slightly but looked back at the vial. If she stopped using she’d revert back to that shell. She would be trapped within her own body…within her own dysfunction. That is what scared the hell out of her. But how could she say no to the help Smokescreen was so willing to give. After all he had always been there for her. He had taken care of her when times were hard. And in all that time he had never asked for anything in return. He was willing to give his life so she could have hers back.

She had been and still was grateful for everything, and yet she lied to him. She didn’t have enough courage to confide in him with what had been happening…and even now she still held secrets.

Tracer let out a low groan but quickly stifled it and looked back to Smokescreen. After his speech how could she say no?

“You know what…I really believe you would seek Primus out and ask for His help. You’ve always been tenacious. And hardheaded."

The femme let out a chuckle and shook her head gently. Her smile remained even when he mentioned that it was time for him to walk on his own. She was a bit apprehensive but he needed to get a feel for his new body. And besides he would still be following doctor’s orders.

Tracer gave him a nod and let go of his waist giving him the freedom he needed to start his exercise. Of course she had no intention of leaving his side even while he was moving around on his own. The last thing she wanted was for him to injure himself.

They were making good time and Smokescreen was moving quite smoothly when Tracer paused but she quickly recovered and quickened her pace so she was at the rallybot’s right side. A smile returned to her face as she watched his movements closely only to pause again…this time she raised her right hand to the side of her head and gently rubbed.

The dull pain that had been working its way through her cranium was just now intensifying. She had no reason to mention it to anyone before since she had no desire to distract Wheeljack or Axle from their work on Smokescreen and the lengthy recharge she had taken seemed to have worked, but now…

Tracer stopped next to the recovering mech when she heard the engineer start up a conversation. The scout paid little attention to their talk until Wheeljack had mentioned that he needed to perform some tests. Tracer grew nervous hoping there was nothing wrong since Smokey had been making very good progress. However the femme took a slight step back when ‘Jack look to her and revealed that the tests were for her own benefit.

She took another step back to put some more distance between them and shook her head. They had done processor scans and they said they could help. That hope was what motivated her. It was what made her put her trust in them.

“No." Her answer was voiced so low it nearly came out as a whisper.

Her optics went directly to the scanner held in Wheeljack’s hand before moving them up to look into the engineer’s face. She narrowed her optics and was prepared to fight him off when Smokescreen mentioned something concerning her eyes.

“What?" She hadn’t noticed it before it was mentioned that her optics were glowing brighter and that they seemed to be burning the sockets. Tracer brought her hands up to her eyes and pressed them gently against her visual receptors. She quickly pulled them away as she felt the increase of their temperature.

“Alright. You can go ahead and do the test just…please, nothing invasive. It’s just...do it."

The scout lowered her head and moved to the makeshift medical slab and hopped up on its side. Once she was settled Tracer cast both mechs a somber expression. This could only turn out bad.
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Smokescreen85 » Sat Aug 25, 2012 8:56 am

Motto: "Transform and smoke 'em!"
Weapon: Twin Shoulder-Mounted Rocket Launchers
Wheeljack’s Lab

Wheeljack sighed when Tracer at first refused to willingly go along with the scans. The scientist had no desire to force her as he believed that any mech could only be helped if they wanted it. Forcing a medical procedure on someone was not the Autobot way. Of course, her uncooperative stance posed all kinds of long term issues not just for her but for everyone around her, as well. Thankfully, as ‘Jack had hoped, Smokescreen made his opinion known and supported the scans once he saw just how the drug had already affected her optics.

Reluctantly, the troubled femme agreed and walked over to a the makeshift med berth, hopping up on to it. She begged for the scans not to be invasive and to just get it over with. “Of course, Tracer. This shouldn’t take too long. You won’t feel a thing, “Wheeljack promised as he glanced over to Smokescreen. “You going to be okay on your own for a while, Smokey?"

“I’ll be fine, ‘Jack," the rallybot replied as he stood precariously nearby. “Just stay remain focused on her. She’s more important."

Wheeljack nodded as he turned and approached the nervous femme sitting on the medical slab. The scientist retracted his face shield once again and offered Tracer a warm, and hopefully comforting smile. “This’ll be over before you know it. I promise." The engineer then raised the small, portable scanner up and activated it with the touch of a button. The device hummed to life as a series of lights glowed across its surface. With a steady hand, Wheeljack slowly guided the scanner over her upper body, focusing mainly on Tracer’s cranial unit and upper torso region. He made several passes to ensure the quality of data that was received. He did not venture too deep into her sub-processor as it would likely elicit a painful response.

As Wheeljack performed the necessary scans, Smokescreen managed to hobble slowly over towards the med berth, stumbling a few times as he went. For all intents and purposes, the rallybot was doing rather well with no one holding his hand. He still had a long way to go before his balance was fully restored and even longer before he could transform again, but it was a pretty good start nevertheless.

Making it to the slab without falling, Smokescreen held on to the edge with his left hand while his right reached over and took hold of Tracer’s shaking actuators. He smiled at her, hoping that she would remain still and not turn her head to meet his stare. “It’s okay, Trace, I’m here. Nothing bad is going to happen to you while I’m around. Just remain calm and it will all be over soon," the diversion expert promised as he tightened his grip on her hand while Wheeljack continued with the scans. “How much longer, ‘Jack?" The unpainted mech asked without taking his optics off of an increasingly anxious Tracer.

“I’m almost done, Smokey," Wheeljack responded, making one more pass over the drug-addicted femme’s cranium. A few astroseconds went by before the scanner beeped twice, which signified that the procedure was finally at its conclusion. “There, I think I’ve got what I need. Just remain here, Tracer, while I contact Axle with the results." The mechanical engineer then turned and moved away to a nearby workbench, all the while studying the results of the scan. Mmmm, interesting, Wheeljack thought as he subsequently opened a private comm line to the field medic:

>>"Axle, this is Wheeljack. I’ve completed the first series of scans on Tracer. I focused primarily on her upper torso and cranial regions as they would show the earliest effects of the Syk. I’m transmitting the results to you now. Needless to say, they are very concerning, especially the fact that her processor is showing degradation of about 13%, mainly in the right quadrant. Her optics are also beginning to malfunction and are burning brighter and hotter than normal, resulting in her sockets becoming somewhat scorched. I also detected some minimal damage to her vocalizer, but I feel that it the least of our concerns at this point. Please advise, should I administer additional scans like you previously wanted or wait for you to return? Even with Smokescreen’s help, it was very hard to convince her to sit down for this one session. I’m not sure I’ll be able to talk her into another set of scans right now."<<
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Marcus Rush » Sun Aug 26, 2012 2:53 pm

Weapon: Automatic Acid-Pellet Gun
Science Lab

Ultra Magnus's optics narrowed briefly as he turned his head to peer down towards slightly smaller Autobot metallurgist. His face remained static and unreadable, no display of surprise or appreciation for the efforts of the war hardened scientist. Inwardly however, he was beginning to gather the pattern that many key sections of his command, medical, sciences and the like were increasingly becoming isolated. Everyone was shaken from Optimus's disappearance, and each were still adjusting. Even still, the hair trigger edge that the entire sector was sitting on did little to lead towards the productive. Magnus resolved to speak with some of the others in an effort to resolve these issues at a more opportune time.

As it stood however, The Autobot Commander, had a greater plate of objectives to accomplish. His visit with Ratchet had already got him thinking of an avenue of strategy he had not previously considered. Dealing with the morale was a small step, even the addition of new supplies tended to help bolster the positive attitude but even that could only go so far. What they needed was a demonstration of unity, direction and a reestablishment of what it meant to be an Autobot. Add to that the thoughts of how to deal with Grimlock's departure seemed to overshadow even the most basic plans. Best focus on what is in front of him now. "It is good to see you as well Perceptor. Though I did not expect you to be as excitable."

Magnus turned his full body now and stepped forward, his guns narrowing in on his chest plate. "Of course I did not come to exchange war stories regarding your new chosen profession. Long and short of it, Prime's disappeared here in the sector, I've been recalled to assume command. Now we are trying to develop a new foundation to counter Shockwave's motives here for this planet we now orbit. The End."

He shrugged briefly and shook his head, trying to hide the emotion behind the words he had just spoke, unsuccessfully. He didn't want the job, nor did he want to be the one to fill in for Optimus until a true successor was found. "Perceptor, I have been informed that you have obtained a sample and information regarding Shockwave's most recent discovery regarding a special ore. I need an update regarding that information as well as what other details you may have gleaned through your own analysis..."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Thu Aug 30, 2012 5:02 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
Wheeljack’s Lab

As much as she didn’t want to, Tracer kept still and let the engineer take whatever scans he had to in order to fulfill curiosity. In all reality she felt as though she was back in that institute being poked and prodded by those damnable doctors…or those who passed for doctors….she was never sure.

It was about half a breem into the test when Tracer finally began to fidget…first with her hands and then by shifting slightly from side to side. It was taking too long and she was becoming impatient. She had no desire to have her entire past laid out for all to see. There were things that she just needed to keep in the past.

The touch of Smokescreen’s hand on hers caused her to flinch slightly as the gesture was not expected, but she quickly calmed and wove her fingers through his. Her optics, however, never left Wheeljack and the scanning device. The fear of him coming across something he shouldn’t burned deep into her jumbled processor causing her anxiety to increase. Although she remained silent externally, internally she let out a primal scream for the probing to stop.

Upon Wheeljack’s announcement that the tests were now completed Tracer let her shoulders slump slightly and her whole body relax. She watched for a moment as the engineer stepped away from the bench in order to contact Axle who had left several breems ago. Since the white mech was now otherwise occupied Tracer looked over to Smokescreen and gave him a small unsure smile.

“You’re doing really good…you know…getting around."

The smile that had formed slowly faded and her face revealed a worried expression.

"Smokescreen, I’m scared. I’ve been scared before, but this time…it’s different."

She wasn’t referring to being on Syk that she was very used to, she wasn’t even referring to weaning off the narcotic, what scared her most was having to explain her past to him. Revealing everything from even before they met. Everything that she had tried to forget.

“Promise me something. Promise me that no matter what the scans and tests show that you won’t walk away."

Tracer gave Smokescreen’s hand a strong squeeze. Please, Primus don’t let them find out.

Communication from Axle to Wheeljack

>>"Okay, ‘Jack. I’m really not that surprised about the side effects manifesting as quickly as they are now, what I am concerned about is that 13% degradation. The right quadrant controls most of the speech, gesturing and organizational skills. Left side degradation would be rather significant had it been detected. However, even if the scans only showed the damage was centralized in the right quadrant it doesn’t mean there wasn’t damage in the left."<<

There was a long pause before the field medic continued.

>>"Sorry for the delay, Wheeljack. Okay, I’m nearly done with Prowl’s check-up. I need another half breem and then I’ll need to speak with Ratchet. Give me approximately two breems and I’ll be at your door."<<

Science Lab

Once Perceptor realized that the mech standing in his lab was no threat to him the sniper lowered his weapons and carefully re-holstered them on his hips. Without the usual pleasantries Perceptor stepped past Ultra Magnus and made his way back to the workbench he had been working at prior to the City Commander’s arrival.

“A pleasure as always, Commander."

The red mech stopped and picked up one of the dozens of pads strewn across not only the bench but the nearby desk as well. Without so much as a backwards glance the scientist resume his work.

“Excitable? Hardly. Prepared would be the more accurate assumption. One can never be too careful when studying such a rare commodity."

The curt announcement made by the Commander caught the sniper slightly off guard but it hardly showed in his demeanor or posture. Instead Perceptor continued with his work.

“I see. It was unfortunate that we lost Prime, but I am sure you will be more than capable of keeping things in order until his inevitable return. As for Shockwave…his motives stand to reason."

With his back still facing Ultra Magnus Perceptor remained silent as he considered exactly what he should reveal to the faction’s new commanding officer.

“That information is correct, Commander. I have obtained a sample of the ore. Unfortunately, it will need to be refined through several methods before it may be utilized as a source of fuel. I lack the precise methods that Shockwave has used, or is using, in order to create a stabilized sample. However…"

Perceptor placed his datapad gently down on the bench and turned around to face the larger mech.

“I was able to refine one of the samples down to what I believe would be stable. I would like your permission to test it on a willing candidate."

From his chair the scientist turned sniper stood and held his chin high. With any luck the new Commander would agree to Perceptor’s suggestion.

“Sir, I would like to be the volunteer to test the refined ore."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Smokescreen85 » Fri Aug 31, 2012 7:36 pm

Motto: "Transform and smoke 'em!"
Weapon: Twin Shoulder-Mounted Rocket Launchers
Wheeljack’s Lab

Once the cranial scan had been completed, Smokescreen could immediately tell that Tracer was more relaxed than during the procedure. She had likely endured such a scan in the past and it did not bring about the desired results she had been hoping for. He could understand her apprehension, but it was still an important test to conduct in order to see exactly what damage, if any, had been done to her processor. More importantly, could that damage be reversed or was it permanent? Those were questions needed answering if he was to successfully get her off of the Syk and make her feel normal all the time without the need for some Decepticon-made narcotic.

“There, that wasn’t so bad was it?" The diversion expert flashed Tracer an even broader smile as he held on to her hand tighter than before. Her initial response was to compliment him on the great improvements he had already made in getting around on his own. Smokey may not be the most physically strong of the Autobots, but he was not one to be underestimated, either. “I’m making do, I guess. Still got a long way to go, though."

Smokescreen’s smile then faded as Tracer told him how scared she was. He placed an arm around her shoulder and leaned in closer to her as she made him promise not to walk away no matter what the results of the scans revealed. The rallybot was a bit taken aback by her sudden worries regarding his loyalty to her. It was as if there was something more that she was concerned about besides just the Syk, itself. Perhaps, even now, there was still something that she was not telling him.

“Trace, of course I won’t walk away," Smokescreen assured her as he squeezed her hand in return of her own gesture, trying to get the troubled femme to look him in the optics again. “What are you so worried about? I mean, if your processor does show signs of damage, I’m sure that Wheeljack and Axle have a way to repair it. They built me a whole new body, after all. I’m sure they can at least fix your head." The diversion expert forced a slight chuckle as he attempted to comfort her. “Unless there’s something else. Is there, Tracer?"
_________

Across the room, Wheeljack received the dual communications back from Axle, who was busy on the Guardian performing whatever procedures he needed to on Prowl. Maybe the field medic would do everybody a favor on both ships and upgrade the prick-bot’s personality chip to something more tolerable. It was unlikely, of course, but one could pray to Primus for the impossible. The mechanical engineer responded to the messages with a simple non-verbal acknowledgement before he turned his attention back to Smokescreen and Tracer.

“Well, Axle will be back with us in about two breems," Wheeljack informed both of his comrades as he made his way over to the loving pair. “There won’t be any more scans right now, Tracer. The results were concerning, but I’m not a doctor so I really can’t give you a prognosis. Once Axle arrives and reviews the findings, he’ll be able to explain things better than I can."

“Come on, ‘Jack," Smokescreen spoke up, not wanting to wait for two breems to find out what the problem was, and clearly there was something wrong for the engineer to not simple give them the results. “What did that scans show? You don’t have to be a doctor to see if there was processor damage or not. Spill it!"

“I really shouldn’t it," Wheeljack countered, not wanting to upset either one of them, especially not the drug-addled femme.

As a result of the scientist’s refusal, Smokescreen let go of Tracer’s hand and moved towards the engineer, stumbling a bit in the short distance between them. “Tell us, ‘Jack!" The rallybot’s tone was one of growing anger, having risked everything for Tracer only to be made to wait for an important piece of information now by one of his closest friends and allies. “It’s not fair to make her wait! You found something wrong, didn’t you?"

“Smokey, you need to calm down. You’re going to tear a fuel line or worse."

“I’ll calm down when you tell us the results," the diversion expert retorted, not backing down an inch.

“Fine," Wheeljack finally conceded, realizing that there was no other way to calm his friend down so that all of the progress Smokey had made thus far was not entirely undone by his own emotions. “The scans showed some slight damage to Tracer’s processor along with some signs of decay in her vocalizer and around her optics."

“How much damage to her processor exactly?" Smokescreen pressed further.

“About 13% degradation to the right quadrant," the mechanical engineer revealed, not wanting to speculate further. “But, that’s it. There are other readings here, but I don’t know what they mean because I’m not a doctor. Now, please Smokey, I need you to relax before you hurt yourself."

Smokescreen let out a sigh and backed away, allowing himself to calm back down to normal parameters. His internal fans had kicked in for a brief time but were now quiet once more. At least, they were functioning fine. “I’m sorry, ‘Jack," the rallybot replied as he returned to Tracer’s side and gripped her hand again. “I don’t know what came over me."

“It’s okay, Smokey. You’ve been through a lot lately. Why don’t you sit down and take a short break before continuing with your exercises?" Wheeljack suggested with a smile on his unshielded faceplate.

Smokescreen simply nodded and managed to hop up onto the makeshift medical slab directly next to Tracer. He sat there and continued to hold her hand, all the while wondering just how much this entire experience had changed him. Or perhaps it hadn’t changed him so much as helped him revert back to the way he used to be long ago. The rallybot hadn’t exactly been the most savory of characters back before the war broke out. Lying, cheating, breaking the rules - those were the things Smokey had abandoned for the most part after he joined the Autobots. Those traits served him well in utilizing diversionary tactics. Now, they were helping him again for a very different reason. Maybe that darker side to him was beginning to come to the surface again or already had.

Maybe.
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Sat Sep 01, 2012 8:27 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
Wheeljack’s Lab

Tracer’s body moved slightly as a shiver ran down her spinal column once the scan had finally been completed. It wasn’t invasive in the least but it was still too close for her comfort. The blue and white scout let out a low nervous chuckle before quieting down and turning her gaze away from Smokescreen and casting it to the floor. She was relieved when he told her that he would never walk away from here even if something unnerving was found in the examination.

It was his last query, however, that had her draw in a deep intake of air and hold it. There was something but there was no possible way she could explain it. She didn’t answer him right away; instead she slowly looked back up and locked optics with him. After a moment a small tentative smile crossed over her features, but it faltered causing her to break off her gaze before she finally answered.

“I’m sure Wheeljack and Axle can take care of things. I’m not really worried…not much at least."

It was the best she could come up with without revealing what she truly felt and knew.
She could only hope that the scans had come up with nothing more than some preliminary readings.

“Thanks, Wheeljack."

Tracer shook her head when the engineer had given his thoughts on just what the scanner’s results were. They weren’t promising but then again she had already known what kind of damage the narcotic had done and was still doing. The scout let out a sigh and tuned out the two mechs who were continuing their discussion about the readout.

She could hear Smokescreen demanding to know exactly what was found. Tracer could hear it taking place but it seemed that it didn’t register as her optics and her head never lifted to focus on the disgruntled rallybot and the engineer.

“13%. It doesn’t seem like such a large number."

Tracer’s voice was low and seemed far away. It was hard to believe that something that could help her feel like everyone else was in essence slowly killing her. She let out another sigh and shook her head. She was prepared to say something more when Axle had entered the lab and stepped up beside Wheeljack.

“I apologize for showing up so late. Things got a bit hectic, but Prowl’s on his way and won’t be a problem for the time being."

The field medic cast the engineer a curt nod and took a hold of the scanner he had given to Wheeljack. With a quick glance in Smokescreen and Tracer’s direction and a slight smile Axle looked down at the scanner. He let out a low grunt while his actuators danced over the screen bringing up all the information he needed in order to determine his next course of action. And from the looks of the results a deep processor scan would be needed.

Axle quickly pocketed the smaller scanner and removed the device he had used on Prowl earlier during the tactician’s check-up. He made sure not to reveal the device as the look of it would disturb all but the most battle hardened warriors.

“Okay, Tracer. I’m sure that Wheeljack has told you that there is 13% damage in the right quadrant of your processor. But there were some other results; unfortunately I’ll need to take a quick look in order to determine just what those results consist of."

That said Axle worked his way around the workbench where she and Smokescreen were seated and stopped when he was standing behind the scout.

With his hand on the back of her head Axle gently pushed until her chin was resting on her chest. She complied with no hesitation and no complaint. He then quickly located the port that he would need to connect the device’s wire up with it.

“Now hold still this won’t take long."

Tracer let out a quivering sigh as she asked the field medic the one thing that was on her mind.

“Will it hur…..aghhhhhhhhh!"

The connection was made before her question could even be completed. Axle shook his head and placed his free hand against her back pressing her forward in order to keep her from leaning back and raising her head.

“Yes. It’s gonna hurt like the pit."

Her cries died down as the device began to work through her processor taking readings and copying files. The pain remained causing her to pull in a series of deep and heavy intakes trying hard not to let out another pain filled cry.

“Hang on hon, it’s almost over."

Finally, after what seemed like vorns Axle disconnected the wire and stepped back away from the workbench where he walked around and stopped right next to Wheeljack. Like before the medic’s actuators flew over the keys and tallied up the results of all of the readings gathered.

At the same time Tracer lifted her head and gave out a low tired groan. Her hand moved to her head giving it a gentle rub as she watched Axle run through all of the readings. It was when a quizzical expression formed on his face that she began to panic.

“I just performed a deep processor scan so that I could determine what else was found on the base scan. According to these readings you actually have 15% degradation of your processor."

Axle stepped away from the engineer and approached Tracer still seated on the workbench beside Smokescreen.

“The 13% found earlier was located only in the right quadrant. The other 2% is in the left quadrant. Now, Syk only affects the right…13%. Left…2%...that’s trauma. Tracer, what happened? What caused this damage?"

Tracer stared at the medic long and hard before she slid off the bench, releasing Smokescreen’s hand in the process. She paced for several moments before she finally stopped and looked at the three mechs.

“It was nothing."

The concerned look on Axle’s face dropped and he stalked forward causing the femme to take a quick step away.

“Don’t lie to me! I want a straight answer! Now, what the hell happened?!"

She cast each person in the lab an apologetic look before hugging herself around the waist. The scout averted her eyes and gave them what they wanted to hear.

“ECT."

The deep furrow in Axle’s brow vanished as his optics widened and his posture straightened. He stared at the femme for a long moment before he reigned in his emotions.

“How often?"

“Four times a day."

How many days?"

She tightened her arms frightened of what they all might think of her.

“Every day for 13 vorns."

Axle ran his right hand down the length of his face and let out a groan.

“Rodion?"

“Yes."

It was all he needed to know. He turned back around and took hold of Wheeljack’s arm tugging the scientist along with him to a more private location.

“We need to talk."

While Axle and Wheeljack retreated to a corner of the lab Tracer lowered her arms and let her shoulders slump in defeat. She had tried for so long to keep her past in the past, but in just a matter of a few cycles everything had fallen apart.

“I was going to tell you…it’s just…I’m sorry, Smokescreen."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Smokescreen85 » Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:41 pm

Motto: "Transform and smoke 'em!"
Weapon: Twin Shoulder-Mounted Rocket Launchers
Wheeljack’s Lab

“It’s large enough," Wheeljack replied to Tracer’s comment regarding the 13% processor degradation as he shifted his optics from Smokescreen over to the troubled femme. “And that’s not including the optical and vocal damage, but that’s not as grave a concern to me right now." Before the mechanical engineer could say any more, the doors slid open behind him and Axle entered the room, apologizing for being late in his return from the Guardian. “No worries, Axle. Glad to hear that Prowl won’t be a problem. Here’s the scanner and the data therein," the scientist said as he handed the device over to the field medic and watched as the former doctor studied the results before going to work on performing a more in depth scan of Tracer’s processor.

The pain she experienced during the procedure seemed to be excruciating, but thankfully Smokescreen was right beside the drug addled femme, holding her hand the entire time and hoping that it would be enough to comfort her. “You can do it, Trace. Like he said, it’s almost over," the rallybot whispered to her in a soothing tone. Smokey did not like seeing Tracer in so much pain. In fact, he hated it. However, the troubled femme had been in pain for most of her existence due to her condition and addiction. So, what was a little more at this point? At least, now she would receive the help that she desperately needed in order to stop her suffering forever.

Once the second procedure was over, Axle moved away which allowed Smokescreen to place his other arm around Tracer’s shoulders to provide additional comfort to her. “You did good, kid," the diversion expert said, smiling at the clearly exhausted femme as the discomfort she felt began to subside. The unpainted mech kept his optics on her visage until his attention was drawn away by Axle’s approach and explanation of the newest set of test results. Unlike Wheeljack, the field medic was more than forthcoming with his findings, but they were not what Smokey had expected to hear. Not at all.

Apparently, there was an additional 2% damage located in the left quadrant of her processor, damage that was clearly trauma and not caused by exposure to the Syk. Smokescreen listened intently as Axle asked Tracer about what had happened to her that would’ve caused such harm. Initially, she didn’t respond and simply released the rallybot’s hand before sliding off the workbench and pacing back and forth in front of them. The lying femme then tried to evade the subject all together, but the field medic did not accept that and pushed harder, demanding that she tell him the truth immediately. When she finally relented, the diversionary tactician was shocked by what she divulged. Even Wheeljack appeared stunned by the revelation before being quickly pulled away into a far corner of the room by an agitated field medic.

“I can’t believe it. You were subjected to ECT?" Smokescreen asked as he cast a stern glare directly at the blue and white femme. The rallybot knew that ECT involved jolting a processor with electrical currents in the hopes of curing whatever was emotionally wrong with a patient. It was an archaic method by modern standards, but one that had been widely used in the past as an acceptable procedure if not a torturous one. Unfortunately, it would also likely complicate things gravely during the recovery process of someone addicted to a narcotic like Syk.

“So, you were going to tell me, huh? When exactly, before or after your processor was completely fried?!" The diversion expert questioned Tracer further, raising his vocalizer in the process as he got down off the makeshift med berth and hobbled precariously towards her. “Did you think I wouldn’t understand or that I would judge you harshly? After all that I’ve done for you, risking everything to save you, and you still couldn’t tell me the truth about something this important that could affect your recovery or even kill you?! I mean, I just gave you the chance a few moments ago if there was anything else and you just avoided answering. Haven’t I won your trust yet or do I have to die for good before I’ve sacrificed enough?!"

Smokescreen’s internal fans had kicked in to high gear in an attempt to help cool down his newborn systems before they overheated under the strain. The diversion expert placed one hand onto the edge of a nearby table to prevent himself from collapsing while keeping his optics locked on those of the drug addicted femme. “I can’t help you if you don’t tell me everything! In fact, I could’ve killed you had I not found out about this! So, one last time, are there any other secrets you’ve been keeping from me, Tracer? And you can start by telling me what Rodion is. I want to know everything now before I waste any more effort on someone would doesn’t seem to think that I’m worth confiding in!"

Meanwhile, Wheeljack had allowed Axle to guide him to a more secluded location within his lab in order to talk about the latest twist in the ongoing saga of Tracer the drug-addicted femme. The mechanical engineer was beside himself, not knowing how they should proceed from this point on. Hopefully, the former doctor had the answers. “This just keeps getting worse and worse, Axle. I’ve heard about ECT before, but I’ve never actually met anyone that had been subjected to such barbaric treatment. I can’t believe she was put through that. No wonder she doesn’t like tests."

Wheeljack crossed his arms over his chest armor and regarded the field medic with a worried expression on his shieldless faceplate. “This is going to complicate any sort of recovery Smokey has in mind for her, won’t it? Is there any hope for her at all or are we just wasting our time now that we know about the ECT? Because, I’ll tell you this much, trying to convince the naked lover-bot over there that she can’t be fixed will be an uphill battle the likes of which neither one of us has ever seen before."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Mon Sep 03, 2012 7:45 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
Wheeljack’s Lab

The questions she had answered in quick succession were something she had never thought she’d have to do. Not now…and she wished not ever. But now there was nothing left…no cushion to buffer her sorted past against her hopeful future. There was nothing but suspicion and hurt, and none of it was hers.

The sheer anger in Smokescreen’s normally calm and soothing voice had Tracer cringing away from him with her head held low in shame. This was worse than anything she had ever been through…even worse than the therapy itself.

Tracer stepped further from the irate mech and wrapped her arms around her waist; it was all she could do to keep from breaking down.

The scout, shaking and at a loss for the proper words finally raised her head so she could look Smokescreen in the optics.

“I didn’t tell you because I was scared to death of what you might think of me. I was scared to death that you would look at me like all the others have. And no, I didn’t think you’d understand. After all you never knew I was on Syk until recently. If I told you about…the therapy you would have asked questions as to why I went through it. That would have led to more question and more question."

Tracer dropped her hands to her sides and set an angry scowl on her face as she moved in closer to the rallybot.

“You don’t know what it was like before I met you! I had nothing! I was…am…defective and everywhere I went…everyone I met treated me like a diseased empty! I was avoided. All I wanted was to be like everyone else, but I couldn’t have that."

She crossed her arms over her chest this time as she turned her shoulder to him.

“The treatment I needed I couldn’t afford. Once the word got out that a war was eminent I had no other choice but to do what I could to get the help I wanted…it turned out it wasn’t the help I needed."

The scout let out a heavy sigh and raised her head, her optics turned to the ceiling. She took in the sickening color for a moment before lowering her head and turning her back to Smokescreen.

“Rodion was a cesspool but it was all I had. I practically crawled to the institute there. I thought for sure they could help me and it wouldn’t cost me a thing."

There was long pause followed by a low sarcastic chuckle. Tracer then looked over her shoulder but the anger had melted away and was replaced by a desperate look calling for the diversion expert to try and understand.

“It was cheap but it was experimental. Four times a day they took me for sessions. Four times a day every day for thirteen vorns and it still didn’t work. I knew that after the first five vorns. When I told them that I wanted out they ignored me. They played on my fears that without their help I’d be nothing more than refuge. So they continued…I struggled sometimes but it didn’t matter. I was dragged away for my scheduled therapy and dragged back to my room."

That same glare and that same scowl returned with renewed vigor as Tracer stalked even closer to the unpainted mech trying to steady himself against whatever he could find.

“I burdened you by telling you about my addiction to Syk and I saw what you went through. You put yourself ahead of me and I nearly lost you because of that! I don’t want that happen again. So, no, I didn’t want to confined in you about this. You’ve been through too much already. I couldn’t stand putting even more on your shoulders."

“You’ve never known me before I was hooked. All you’ve ever seen and known of me is this. Normal…mentally. And that’s all I ever wanted. I had to go through cheap experimental therapy sessions just to find out what one drug could do in one dose. Everything…everything spiraled. Nothing will ever be the same. As soon as I’m off Syk I’ll be back to where I started…unable to function like a normal Cybertronian. A worthless-defective-diseased empty!"

The last words that escaped her vocal processor were nearly screamed out at the rallybot but with her vocal damage several parts were laced with static. It didn’t matter as long as her point got across. Tracer quickly stalked off away from Smokescreen also keeping her distance from both Wheeljack and Axle. Now it was time to think…if such a thing was possible after such an intense moment.

Wheeljack offered no resistance to Axle’s guidance to a quiet corner so he could have an uninterrupted discussion with the engineer. The revelation was a shock as Axle was familiar with the location that the therapy had been conducted. He had always been told that the volunteers that had entered the Rodion institute had seldom left with all of their mental faculties still intact. In fact the last he had heard was that several of those who had sought help wound up as nothing more than drones.

“Worse isn’t the half of it Wheeljack."

Axle took a quick look over his shoulder and watched for an astrosecond as both mech and femme began the throes of an argument. From what the medic could tell it was probably their first one. Axle quickly shook his head and turned his attention back to the white mech standing before him.

“You’ve never met any of them because not all of them were released capable of even thinking for themselves. The treatment was cheap and they prayed on the desperate who had no other alternatives. Unfortunately none of the treatments administered at the Rodion institute were therapeutic. In fact every one of them were barbaric."

“Just before the war broke out and the influx of new patients at the institute peeked it was shut down. Something to do with utilizing the staff and equipment for the war effort. It’s a shame to admit it but the start of the war was the best thing to happen for those patients. They were transferred to the Iacon institute where they finally got the care they needed. I wonder if Tracer was one of them because after a while there were a number of patients both from Rodion and Iacon that left the institute and wound up on the streets using narcotics to self-medicate. It seems like the only explanation as to how she became hooked. Word of mouth through the institute…convince your doctor the therapy is working and boom, you’re discharged and out on the streets."

Axle thought about everything that had transpired over the past few cycles and tried to put everything into perspective. A very trying task.

“No, no. With the degradation at 2% we should still be capable of doing what we plan on doing, but we’re just going to have to be much more careful. The doses will have to be smaller. Which means she’ll go through longer withdrawal symptoms which will also be more intense."

The field medic placed his elbow in his left and with his right hand stroked his chin in thought.

“I’m gonna make this happen….we’re gonna make this happen. My only concern is what happens when she’s finally off the drug. She’s not like the rest of us as far as her mental state is concerned. None of us know what she’s like without the narcotic…not even Smokescreen. What do we do for her after she’s not “normal” anymore?"

Axle took another quick glance over his shoulder and noticed both love struck ‘Bots were now yelling at one another. Not a good thing for either of them.

“Oh perfect. We better get over there before he drops to the floor unconscious and she drops to the floor convulsing."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Smokescreen85 » Wed Sep 05, 2012 6:10 pm

Motto: "Transform and smoke 'em!"
Weapon: Twin Shoulder-Mounted Rocket Launchers
Wheeljack’s Lab

Smokescreen tried to calm down as he listened to Tracer explain why she had not confided in him in regards to the experimental treatment she had suffered through at the Rodion Institute. The rallybot had only heard whispers of such places, but he had never actually been to one or met anybody who had ever been a patient in a slag hole like she was describing. It sounded horrible on every level and the fact that she was forced to continue her treatments against her will was absolutely spark breaking to the unpainted mech.

The troubled femme’s desperate story slowly turned Smokescreen’s anger into sorrow for her. Things were so much clearer to him now that she had filled in the blanks. The rallybot only wished she had done so without his prodding and just trusted him from the beginning of all this. But, who was he to judge her for the lies she had told when Smokey, himself, was the best liar of them all? His cheating, his gambling, his illegal street racing - was all that any better than the lies and half truths that the blue and white scout had told? No, not really. In fact, Tracer’s reasoning for being deceitful was far more rational and sound than anything the diversion expert could come up with for his past questionable behavior. Smokey had acted the way that he did because he had enjoyed it, not because he was forced to. He was having fun while Tracer was in constant suffering.

“I had no idea," Smokescreen muttered quietly once Tracer had finished her increasingly loud tirade and finally moved away from him again. “But you still should’ve told me. I know I’m one of the physically weaker Autobots around, but my shoulders can still handle more than you think. What if I ended up hurting you while trying to help you? Not knowing about something like this could have made your processor damage even worse and then where would that leave us?! You’d be dead and I would have done all this for nothing!"

The rallybot took a step away from the table he had been leaning on and tried to approach the drug addled femme. However, their argument had already taken its toll on his newborn systems and Smokescreen could already feel the effects of such an emotional confrontation with someone he cared so deeply about. “I know I’m not the most truthful mech in the galaxy, but we have to at least be honest with one another.....if my plan to save you is going to....work," the diversion expert continued as he stumbled a bit, his weakening legs finally giving out beneath him. Falling to his knees, Smokey managed to grab a hold of the makeshift med berth he and Tracer had previously been sitting on which thankfully eased the impact on his joints.

The diversionary tactician then placed both hands on his folded knees and gazed up at the troubled femme with an exhausted expression across his visage. “I’m sorry, Tracer. I just don’t want you to suffer anymore. That’s all. And you're not a worthless, defective or diseased empty. Not to me. Not ever."
_________

Wheeljack listened carefully as Axle explained to him more about the barbaric treatments that went on at the Rodion Institute, which was thankfully shut down once the war broke out. Many of the patients were transferred to Iacon and some eventually ended up on the streets where they got hooked on narcotics like Syk. The mechanical engineer nodded in agreement that Tracer was likely one of those who got let out of the Iaconian facility on false pretenses.

“Yes, it seems like the logical conclusion to draw, Axle." Wheeljack said, sparing a quick glance over at the star struck couple before returning his attention back to the field medic. “I’m guessing that after she joined the Autobots, she eventually found her way to Oil Slick, or perhaps she even knew him before the war started. Either way, their tenuous dealer/client relationship has lasted quite some time it seems. At least, until recently. Heh."

The resident mad scientist was pleased to hear that the troubled femme was not a lost cause. The additional 2% degradation only meant that they would have to proceed more carefully with smaller doses. However, the greater concern was once she was completely weaned off the Syk. How would she act and could she be controlled in some way? “I doubt Smokescreen has thought that far ahead. He’s more focused right now on getting her off the narcotic, which I can understand. But, like you just said, how will she behave once her systems are clean? We’re basically replacing one problem with another one entirely." Wheeljack stopped for a moment to think, hoping a solution to the eventually issue would present itself. However, the white mech’s thoughts were cut short when Axle mentioned that the pair were now shouting at each other. “Terrific. As the humans would say, I guess the honeymoon is over."

As Wheeljack moved towards the arguing lovers, he saw Smokescreen stumble at one point and fall to his knees. The engineer’s pace quickened considerably at the sight of his friend on the floor, reaching the former gambler's side in mere astroseconds. “Smokey, are you okay?" The scientist asked as he knelt down and placed a hand on the diversion expert’s shoulder plate.

“Sure thing, ‘Jack," the tired rallybot responded, glancing over at the inventor. “Never...better. Just a lover’s quarrel....that’s all. Heh."

“Yeah, I can see that," Wheeljack responded to his ailing comrade as he looked back at the field medic with a concerned expression. "Axle, I think we may need to get him back into my CR pod where he can continue to heal and rest properly without any more emotional altercations or other distractions." The scientist then paused before glancing over at Tracer, being careful not to give her an accusatory look. “I’m no medic, but I feel it’s for the best."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Marcus Rush » Thu Sep 06, 2012 2:44 pm

Weapon: Automatic Acid-Pellet Gun
Science Lab

Ultra Magnus stepped over towards a cluttered work bench and placed his hand next to a pair of empty beakers. His optics faded briefly as he absorbed the information, or lack there of. It wasn't much to go on to be sure and hardly enough to warrant the request that he knew was due to follow sometime in the near future.

And like clock work, Perceptor did not fail to disappoint. The soldier scooped up one of the empty transparent aluminum beakers and brought it level with his gaze, allowing Perceptor's image to become distorted by the impromptu filter.

"You are not exactly giving me a enough details to warrant such a leap in testing. I can gather that at some point this could very well be used as some sort of fuel source, but I am concerned on how it has performed in the simulations."

He set the beaker down and let his expression soften. A great many questions floated to the surface as he read the scientist's movements. Magnus still had to deal with the dispatching of the scouting party to Earth, as well as the details that had come to him via Prowl regarding the outbreak of Cosmic Rust. "I am sorry Perceptor, I cannot authorize testing on fellow Autobots at this time, even on yourself. At least until your work has been reviewed by Wheeljack and the rest of the Autobot Corps of Engineers. Once their recommendations are in, then I will reconsider... with the proper precautions in place of course."

Magnus reached out a hand and rested it on his friend's shoulder. "I do not want to risk the lives of my comrades unnecessarily. And while this may very well be a mineral that could turn the tide of the war, without the proper precautions in place, without the proper protocols established, one test could very well kill you. I know Prime would not allow it, and in his spirit I must follow that model." He gave the plated shoulder a reassuring squeeze before allowing his arm to fall to his side. "There is a scouting mission slated for Earth. I will have the team's sensors tuned to locate more samples of this ore in order to bolster our testing materials."

Pivoting on his heel, Ultra Magnus headed for the exit. "Keep me posted on the progress Perceptor. I am sure we'll be able to crack this code swiftly, with the right amount of teamwork and investment." With that he disappeared into the halls.

Halls of the Ark-22

Ultra Magnus paused as the doors to the Science Lab closed tight behind him. He was tempted to order the computer on board ship to begin a constant surveillance on Perceptor. For some reason he had this feeling that the scientist would not take his orders to heart and instead take things into his own hands. Still he trusted Perceptor to make the right call when it came to these matters. After all it was he who had served the Iacon Science Academy well all those deca cycles ago. What a way to get his first day in office started.

He rejected the idea and instead began to make his way towards the bridge and thus the primary observation lounge of the Ark. His mind now filled with the five major matters of the day, as he knew them to be. He still had to address this modified Hot Rod character, make that six. Deal with Grimlock's theft, monitor the crisis of morale across the battle group, dispatch the Scouting Mission to Earth and its subsequent fall out from the engineering perspective, deal with the Cosmic Rust fiasco, make sure Perceptor's work was thoroughly vetted before proceeding to the testing phase and finally Rodimus. Yeah, Ultra Magnus was already beginning to regret the agreement he had made with Prowl about ascending the ranks.

Stepping through a tight bulkhead hatch leading into a wider gallery in the heart of the vessel spine. Its wide corridors capable of handling two lanes of traffic, one leading in both directions. To Ultra Magnus, it was strangely quiet. It was not as if he expected the bustle of a major megalopolis such as Altihex or Iacon, but he had hoped to see some life within the large multi-purpose vessel. It was yet another testament to war time. Autobots were in the same boat as the Decepticons, stretched to the limits with very little in the way of troop replenishment methods in sight.

Watching briefly as the first sign of life appeared momentarily near the edge of the Engineering Block, Ultra Magnus let a small smile crawl across his face. At least the ship wasn't totally abandoned. Of course that would soon change once Kup was finished with his arduous assignment of determining who would best staff both vessels. Absorbing the cold oxygen laced gases that were filtered through life support, Magnus stepped into the near abandoned highway and allowed the movement to come into focus. It was coming from Wheeljack's Laboratory. The smiled faded as he turned his back and began walking towards the bridge. While he had details to discuss with the inventor, they could wait until the briefing was concluded. And for him, that was where the priority lay. Get the Autobots planet side, and begin the proper steps to make the planet free of Decepticon infiltration and influence. That was the daunting task that he would assume as Prime would have wished and not for the first time his mind wandered to his fallen missing brother. "Where are you Optimus?"
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Thu Sep 06, 2012 9:03 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
Wheeljack’s Lab

Although she had walked away from Smokescreen she still hadn’t put too much distance between her and him. She was angry, as she knew he was, but she had no desire to be too away from him. Tracer had turned to face him just in time to see the rallybot take a step away from the table he was using as leverage and try to make his way over to her.

She watched intently while he stood and admitted that he might not have been the best of all the Autobots but he was devoted. It was true. No matter what happened or what he had done in his past he was still willing to give of himself in order to make her and his friends happy. For that she was truly grateful.

Tracer’s features softened and her tense posture finally relaxed. But that changed as Smokescreen attempted to take another step forward and stumbled. He landed on both knees before her. Tracer pursed her lips into a tight line and looked down at him.

It was his admitting that he didn’t want her to suffer anymore that nearly caused her to drop to her knees in front of him but she was beaten to the punch by the arrival of Wheeljack who had raced over to his friend’s side to make sure Smokescreen was alright. Tracer hadn’t reacted to the rallybot’s excuse concerning their argument…as far as she was concerned it was something that could be worked out in private.
____

Axle’s head rose slightly as he looked down in Wheeljack’s direction. The engineer was next to Smokescreen and urging him to take some time to rest and get back into the CR pod. It was a sound idea and something the field medic would like to see implemented.

“I’d have to agree with that sentiment, Wheeljack."

Axle took a quick glance in Tracer’s direction before he looked down at the kneeling form of the diversion expert.

“I am a medic and time in that CR pod is for the best. So up and in!"

He sent a gesture toward Wheeljack letting the white mech know that the idea was sound and doctor’s orders were given.
_____

The conversation between Wheeljack and Axle went ignored by the femme while she kept her optics locked on the mech before her.

It had gotten uniquely quiet in the lab. Without tearing her eyes away from him Tracer dropped to her knees and gently placed her hands over Smokescreen’s. She sat for a moment and searched his features. They had known one another for centuries but there were still things that he knew nothing about. That had to change.

“You’re right. I should have told you. And I do trust you…I trust you implicitly. But you have to understand…I wanted my past…just that…to stay in my past. I never meant to hurt you."

Tracer shook her head as she lowered her optics to their hands resting on his legs.

“I’m not going to be the same person you know. When we met I was already using. You’ve never known me…you’ve never seen me the way I really am."

She raised her head and flashed him a weary smile while she gave him hands a gentle squeeze. It was time to stop. He needed his rest and she needed some time to think.

“I think Wheeljack and Axle are right. You need more time in that pod to recover."

Her smile grew wider while she raised her right hand and laid it gently against his left cheek. She waited a moment taking in his features and finally locking optics with his. She rose up slightly on her knees and leaned forward pressing her lips to his in a slow passionate kiss. There would be time to talk later.
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Smokescreen85 » Sat Sep 08, 2012 10:46 am

Motto: "Transform and smoke 'em!"
Weapon: Twin Shoulder-Mounted Rocket Launchers
Wheeljack’s Lab

Wheeljack nodded at Axle when the field medic gave him the go-ahead to get Smokescreen up and into the CR pod in order to help speed his recovery along. The mechanical engineer then looked back at the rallybot only to find that Tracer was now there, kneeling in front of him. As she spoke to the diversion expert, ‘Jack glanced away at the floor to give them some semblance of privacy even though he could still hear what was being said. The engineer paid the whispered words no mind as the concerns of a love-struck couple were not his own.

Smokescreen listened as Tracer knelt down and told him that he had been right. The troubled femme promised that she did, in fact, trust him and that she just didn’t want to revisit her dark past as it was an unpleasant one she'd rather forget. Smokey now understood her reasoning, his anger gone as her words touched his audio receptors. She then warned him that she would act very different once the Syk was expelled from her systems. It would be a side of her that the diversion expert had never seen before. The fear in her vocal processor was clearly evident.

“We’ll find a way to help you, Tracer," Smokescreen vowed as she looked back up into his optics while her hands remained on top of his own. “I’m not afraid of the real you. Someday, what I see now, will be the real you." He squeezed her hands back as she then agreed with both Wheeljack and Axle that he needed more time in the CR pod. The rallybot was going to respond but was quickly cut off when Tracer placed her left hand against his cheek plate. He knew what was coming as he’d seen this look on a femme’s visage before. It had been a long time ago, but it was a look one never forgot.

Finally, after what seemed like a vorn of her gazing into his optics, Tracer leaned in and gave Smokescreen a passionate kiss on his mouth. Wheeljack couldn’t help but glance over at them for a very brief moment, shaking his head slightly at the loving display of affection. The scientist waited patiently for the pair to finish their embrace, but when it didn’t come quite fast enough, the white mech had no choice but to end it, himself.

“Okay, you two, we gotta get Smokey into the CR pod now before his systems shut down," Wheeljack interjected, not wanting to come across as being rude.

Hearing the engineer’s plea, Smokescreen slowly pulled back, not wanting the kiss to end but knowing that it had to. “All right, ‘Jack, we’re done," the diversion expert replied without taking his optics off of Tracer. The rallybot smiled at her again as he felt Wheeljack grab a hold of his right arm and help him up to his feet.

"Tracer, grab his other arm please," the Autobot inventor asked as he motioned towards the CR pod. “Thankfully, we don’t have far to go." With the troubled femme’s assistance, Wheeljack guided Smokescreen over to the pod and held onto him tightly as the unpainted mech carefully stepped into the open CR unit. Once the rallybot was back inside and secured, the engineer looked down at him and smiled. “Comfy?"

“I guess," Smokescreen responded as he adjusted his position within the small space that surrounded him. For a moment, Smokey wished this was a full sized chamber where there would be more room, but at least he’d be in deep stasis for the duration of his continued healing. “Will I finally be painted when I come out?"

“Is that all you care about, Smokey?"

“Well, no, but it’s kind of embarrassing to be walking around naked in front of Tracer, you know?"

Wheeljack cast a quick glance over at the drug-addled femme before returning his disbelieving gaze back at Smokescreen. Running his hand down his faceplate, the inventor shook his head and let out a chuckle. “Yes, Smokes, you’ll be fully painted and you’ll have your precious 38s on your door wings, too. Happy?"

“Yes, thanks."

“Good," Wheeljack replied as he grabbed a hold of the pod’s door with his right hand. “Now, lie still. You’ll be good as new before you know it."

“Wait!" Smokescreen exclaimed, raising his vocals slightly. He opened up a small compartment in his forearm and pulled out the vile of Syk he had been carrying since picking it up from the workbench earlier. “Take this. See if you can make more of it for me. It’s essential for Tracer’s own recovery."

Accepting the vile from the tenacious rallybot, Wheeljack let out a quiet sigh, having known that this was coming. “I’ll do what I can, Smokey, but I’m not a chemist."

“I know. Maybe you have a replicator around here?"

“I don’t know. I have something like that. Maybe," Wheeljack conceded as he held on to the vile in his free hand. “I’ll need to modify it some since it was originally designed to replicate solid matter and not a chemical."

“That’s fine, ‘Jack. Whatever you can do, I appreciate it."

“You’ll do more than appreciate it. You’ll owe me this time!"

“I understand," Smokescreen replied with a nod before laying his tired cranium back into the proper position.

Without wasting any more time, Wheeljack finally closed the pod’s door, allowing a hiss of air to escape. He then immediately set the repair cycle and activated the CR unit. “There, he’s all set," the mechanical engineer stated as he looked back over at the love-struck femme. "Tracer, I need you to keep watch over him. Make sure nothing goes wrong. Okay? I’m sure you’ll have no problem handling that."

With that said, Wheeljack turned his attention back to Axle. “If there’s nothing else you need me to do, I’m going to get to work on my replicator. I’ll see if I can adjust it to work on a narcotic like Syk." Looking down at his side, the engineer opened up his left hand and held up the vile Smokescreen had just given him. ‘Jack studied the contents for a moment before offering it to the field medic. “You want to take a look at this, Axle? You said before that you have some knowledge of chemistry right? Any help whatsoever would be greatly appreciated."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Sun Sep 09, 2012 11:14 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
Wheeljack’s Lab

Had she been even been given the chance Tracer would have extended their kiss for far longer than they had been allotted. As it was Wheeljack was right and so when Smokescreen finally did pull away she relented and leaned back into her previous position. As with the rallybot, Tracer too kept her optics fixated on the mech before her. If he was to be confined within that CR pod she wanted to be sure she studied every nuance of all of his features.

From the corner of her optic Tracer could just make out the grey hand of Wheeljack as he gently wrapped it around Smokescreen’s arm and helped the unpainted mech back up to his feet. Before she was even asked the blue and white scout got back to her feet and took hold of Smokescreen’s left arm supporting the mech as best she could. He was not heavy but with the Syk already running its course the strength she once possessed was steadily depleting.

The femme had remained quiet as the two good friends conversed about what Wheeljack conjectured as nothing more than something cosmetic. Smokescreen, on the other hand was adamant that his paintjob be completed as soon as possible. The comment concerning his walking around naked in front of her was just too humorous not to comment on.

“I won’t tell anyone if you won’t."

Tracer let out a quiet chuckle as she looked down at Smokescreen who was still trying to settle into the tight confines of the CR pod. How Wheeljack could stand using that thing was beyond her. As it was the rallybot had to not only contend with the slim side, but also the fact that he had barely enough room to lie down what with the space needed to flatten his doorwings. She could only imagine just how uncomfortable he must be.

After the exchange between the two old friends and when Wheeljack had taken hold of the pod’s door, Tracer took a step back ready to watch as stasis took Smokescreen away temporarily. The sudden cry from the pod had her moving forward again…her hands gripping the opening. It didn’t surprise he that the mech that had always taken care of her was still doing so even when it was he who needed to be taken care of.

Tracer paid no attention to the vial that had exchanged hands…instead she kept her sole focus on Smokescreen. Even as the door was finally closed over the prone ‘Bot Tracer kept watch. She placed a hand carefully over the glass that was fixed directly over Smokescreen’s upper body. Even if Wheeljack hadn’t suggested it she would still have remained behind to watch over him.

“Don’t worry, Wheeljack. I’m not going anywhere until he gets out."

She spared a quick glance over her shoulder at the engineer whose form was already deteriorating into a slight blurry smudge in her optics. Tracer looked back down to the pod and ran her fingers lightly across the glass surface a delicate smile on her face.
Axle had been watching the whole display and had kept his vocalizer on mute for as long as he possibly could. As touching as the scene had been it didn’t get any of them closer to a solution to the problem at hand.

“Ugh. Those two have got it bad."

The medic shook his head slightly…a slight smirk plastered on his face. He looked up at Wheeljack and widened his smile. They had all been through a lot, but none more than the engineer. Not only was he thrust into helping save his good friend’s life but he was now thrust into saving another life.

“No, ‘Jack. You can go ahead and get to work on your replicator."

Axle then took the proffered vial and went through the same motions as the white mech before him…the field medic lifted the container and swirled the liquid around before lowering it and looking back to Wheeljack.

“Yeah. Basic as in whatever was taught at the DMF. There was never much offered in terms of major medical chemistry. Deltaran Medical Facility…a great place to work...just don’t count on learning anything useful. Heh."

The field medic let out a disgruntled sigh as he moved to a free spot on the workbench and went straight to work rummaging through the contents of the storage bins and cabinets for everything he would need in order to figure out just what the concoction consisted of.

“Let’s see here. Ah! You do have one."

Axle took hold of the electron microscope that had been stored neatly in the back of one of the storage cabinets that sat at the back of the lab. Some more searching and Axle had gathered a table full of equipment…some would need to be used as improvised tools, others were just what he had been looking for.

A sample of the Syk was taken and promptly mounted on a slide and placed beneath the scope’s lenses. Axle then took a look at exactly what he had.

“You know, I never really asked you if I could actually call you ‘Jack, Wheeljack. I mean you and I had never met before our…well, before all this."

He gave a slight shrug while his optics were still glued to the scope’s end. The determination of which compounds that made up the narcotic wouldn’t take very long…it was the synthesis, or rather the reverse engineering…unless Wheeljack had gotten his replicator to work…that would take a fair amount of time.

“Well now. This is really…disturbing. That explains the deterioration of the optic housing. A derivative of fluoroantimonic acid."

Axle let out a low sigh. The findings were not what he had expected. The mixture of compounds was not what the field medic had wanted to find, but they would have to work with it.

“Looks like there are between two to three varieties of circuit speeders, and that’s not including the actual Syk. Damn, this one might be a hallucinogen. I’m guessing the dose she took before arriving back onboard didn’t contain it."

Axle pulled away from the scope and took a hard look in Wheeljack’s direction. The scowl on the medic’s face conveyed all the ire that had recently welled up within him.

“I take it Oil Slick’s been her dealer since she began using. The ‘Con’s sick enough to include acid in his little compound experiments I wouldn’t put it past him to add the hallucinogen and the additional circuit speeders."

His features softened as he took a gentle hold of the vial and looked back to the engineer.

“Wheeljack, we better get this right the first time. We get anything wrong and the mixture is off in any way…or the remaining sample is lost...then your friend is bound to lose his girlfriend. That doesn’t even include the possibility that if we do get it right and she’s weaned off…I can’t say for sure how she’d take it."

Axle ran his hand down the length of his face and stood up from the stool he had been occupying. With one hand rubbing at his chin he gestured toward the pod and Tracer who was still poised over the glass.

“I don’t know anything about her underlying condition but if she was hell bent to seek out help at the Rodion Institute than I can assure you that it’s serious. No Syk might mean…well desperate people usually resort to desperate and permanent measures to stop their suffering."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Smokescreen85 » Thu Sep 13, 2012 8:40 pm

Motto: "Transform and smoke 'em!"
Weapon: Twin Shoulder-Mounted Rocket Launchers
Wheeljack’s Lab

“They sure do," Wheeljack replied to Axle’s comment regarding Smokescreen and Tracer before his face shield slid shut again, covering a grinning visage from sight. “Good thing Smokey didn’t die or there’d be no helping her no matter what we tried." The mechanical engineer then nodded as the field medic gave him the go ahead to begin working on his replicator. First, however, he needed to find it amongst all of his tools, equipment and other assorted gadgets, both completed and half-finished inventions of his own making. It shouldn’t be too difficult, however, as the device in question is not very small, but it’s also not huge, either.

As Axle commented about the Deltaran Medical Facility where he picked up his basic knowledge of chemistry from, Wheeljack moved across his lab to a far corner and began searching through one of his storage closets. Moving a variety of things aside, some of which was just useless junk, 'Jack finally found what he was looking for. “Ah, there you are!" The scientist exclaimed as he reached down and carefully lifted the portable replicator up in his arms and carried it back out into the main lab area. It was heavier than he had remembered, but it was nothing that the white mech couldn’t handle.

Placing the cylinder-shaped unit onto the floor, Wheeljack squatted next to it for a moment, carefully looking it over for any signs of outward damage or decay from being in storage for so long. It appeared to be in perfect working order, but that was of little comfort as the device was originally designed to replicate tools and machine parts, not chemicals or drugs of any kind. The engineer would have to modify it considerably for it to have the ability to create more Syk for the drug-addled femme.

Hearing the field medic ask him about his nick name, Wheeljack glanced over at the former doctor and smiled under his face shield. “Of course, you can call me ‘Jack. Everyone does." The scientist chuckled before returning his attention to the replicator, accessing a side panel and taking a peek within to see exactly what needed to be re-routed, added or subtracted, if he was going to make this idea work. It would be difficult but not impossible, or so the engineer thought.

While Wheeljack studied the internal workings of the replicator, he had one audio receptor tuned in to everything Axle was saying regarding the Syk, Oil Slick and how they had to get the concoction absolutely perfect if Tracer was to benefit from the drug at all. Otherwise, the troubled femme would likely die, and it would be Smokescreen that was left without his mate. “Well, I don’t know how long he’s been her dealer, but Slick’s one sick fragger that’s for certain. Regardless, if this drug needs to be perfect, then I’ll need you to identify every ingredient within that vile, no matter how small, so that I may program each element into my replicator here. I’ll also need to know the exact percentage of each component in order to avoid an overdose."

The mechanical engineer paused for a moment to consider what he was about to suggest. “Although, if there is a hallucinogen included like you say, then perhaps we should consider leaving that part out. I mean, she’s clearly not hallucinating now, so she doesn’t really need that bit for the drug to be effective. I just think it's a bad idea to give her something that will make her see things that aren't there. She's got enough problems as is. Of course, it’s just an idea. Whatever you think is best, Axle."

With that said, Wheeljack lifted the replicator off the ground and carried it over to the nearest workbench where he gently placed it down. Now sitting at chest level, the cylinder-shaped device was in a perfect position for the Autobot scientist to do his thing. He waited to begin, however, as the field medic expressed more concerns regarding how Tracer will act once she is finally weaned off the Syk. It was certainly a concern in the back of his processor, but not one the inventor wanted to think about right now.

"I'll worry about that when or if it happens. For now, I'm just going to focus on reconfiguring my replicator so that it can handle chemical reproduction as well as solid matter while you’re working on dissecting that sickening brew," the engineer informed his medical comrade as he pulled up a stool and sat down in front of the unit. Wheeljack then opened the side access panel once more and grabbed a couple of items from his trusty toolkit before going to work on the reconfiguration that would change the very nature of the replicator to suit his current needs. Or, as was the case in this situation, Tracer’s needs.
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Marcus Rush » Sat Sep 15, 2012 8:24 pm

Weapon: Automatic Acid-Pellet Gun
Forward Observation Lounge

Nova Strike pressed the activation pad off to the right of the orange double doors. He waited briefly and patiently as the computer authorized his transfer to the new command system. To his right and down the elevated walkway at the end of the internal spine avenue was the spacious bridge of the Ark Class multiple purpose heavy star ship. The bridge was manned by a skeletal crew, its main deck officer down on the primary command deck maintaining the tedious task of basic command duties. Inwardly Nova smirked, at least he knew he would never be given the punishment task of commanding such a large battle wagon, or even a small corvette in this war. Rangers rarely lived long enough to rise that high in the ranks, and further more what need did he have for naval command?

Turning his attention back to the computer panel he reentered his codes and this time pounded the activation toggle with his closed fist. A sputter of static and a blip of authorization, followed by a sputtering smoldering wisp of smoke brought the door back online. The hydraulics pulled the doors back into the bulkhead with a muted strain.

The ranger stepped over the threshold and allowed his optics to readjust to the dimmer light of the observation lounge and the large blue orb that hung behind the distinct image of Ultra Magnus who stood peering out into the day night terminus. Between he and the new sector commander was a large oval table who's center was carved out and replaced by a holographic generator. "Nova Strike...." He started as the doors closed behind him. "Reporting as ordered."

"Oh great, so we get another hotshot racer bot to grace us with his presence." The ranger's optics darted over towards a shaded portion of the lounge and caught the familiar glint of the golden head of the loud mouthed Aerialbot.

"Enough Slingshot." Ultra Magnus ordered without the benefit of turning to face either of them. "Welcome Nova Strike, have a seat. We will begin when Prowl and the others arrive."

Nova Strike nodded and took a seat opposite that of Slingshot, a quarter of the way between himself and the star field. "Thank you commander. Though I am not sure why I am being included in a scouting mission. Not exactly my specialty... course if we find a Decepticon camp down there..."

The voice was left hanging as the double doors slid open again to reveal the next stage of operatives destined to investigate Earth for a new colony.
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Smokescreen85 » Sun Sep 16, 2012 7:55 am

Motto: "Transform and smoke 'em!"
Weapon: Twin Shoulder-Mounted Rocket Launchers
Forward Observation Lounge

Prowl had traversed the corridors of the Ark-22 without much difficulty, knowing the basic layout of an Ark class vessel like the back of his hand. During the course of his travel, the black and white briefly considered stopping by Wheeljack’s lab to check up on the progress of Smokescreen’s recovery, but ultimately decided against it. The analyst had already wasted too much time with side issues as it were, and he cared not to have any more pop up unexpectedly. The diversion expert was in good hands and needed no interference from a high ranking mech that most considered to be nothing more than an unwanted nuisance.

The Observation Lounge at the very front of the Autobot vessel was Prowl’s immediate destination. That’s where Ultra Magnus had signaled the scouting team to meet him, a place where they could sit and relax as the upcoming mission was discussed. The military strategist could understand the City Commander’s desire to rendezvous somewhere like that, but it could become distracting, as well. The admittedly beautiful views of the planet below along with the more comfortable seating were in direct contrast with that of a simple conference room where the chairs were hard and the view sorely lacking. Neither of those things were really required for a mission briefing as their attentions needed to be on the tasks ahead and not on the scenery.

Be as it may, Prowl approached the large double doors of the lounge, which parted down the center to reveal the spacious area within. Nova Strike and Slingshot were already there waiting for the briefing to begin while Ultra Magnus stood over by the large window, staring down at their intended destination below. The military strategist regarded both the Aerialbot and the ranger with a curt nod before crossing the distance between himself and the City Commander.

“Reporting as ordered, Commander Magnus. Sorry for the delay in my arrival," Prowl apologized with the appropriate salute as he stood at attention next to the taller Autobot. The black and white then pulled out a datapad and handed it to Ultra Magnus. “This is my detailed report regarding the upcoming scouting mission. Silverbolt was of great assistance to the planning of said operation. I will give a full verbal rundown of its contents once everyone else arrives, sir. In addition, my medical check-up went smoothly, and I believe the others can say the same about their own exams, as well."

Prowl remained at attention, not wanting to presume to take a seat at the large oval table without being granted permission from the new sector commander. The analyst’s role had changed dramatically over the past several solar cycles. Thankfully, he was now back to doing what he did best - strategizing. Of course, while the black and white would call it that, others might call it something else - manipulating. Regardless, Prowl now felt more at ease with his part to play in the overall Autobot war effort, and he wasn’t going to let anything stop him from doing what was necessary to win this eternal conflict.
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Mon Sep 17, 2012 5:57 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
Wheeljack’s Lab

Axle had placed his optics over the eye pieces that adorned the top of the electron microscope. It would take a considerable amount of time for him to extract each and every one of the chemicals that Oil Slick had so lovingly united. He had no clue as to just what was swirling throughout the mixture, but that only meant he simply needed to take his tome and be as though rough as he possibly could. And his first order of business was determining whether or not the hallucinogen that was found in the current narcotic was present in the narcotic already used by the addicted femme.

“I’ll need a sample of her energon if I want to ultimately determine just which and in what dosages these chemicals were used."

He finally pulled his head up and cast an uncertain look in Wheeljack’s direction. Although the engineer was currently engrossed in his own world and work and had probably not heard a word the medic had said, Axle still felt it comforting to actually voice his concerns. It was something he got used to doing when Hex was around. The little pit stain hardly ever listened let alone paid attention but at the very least he was a constant presence.

The corners of his mouth curled ever so slightly as he watched Wheeljack put his all into reworking his own precarious invention. With any luck this would be one of the scientist’s crowning moments.

Axle quietly shook his head and glanced over the top of the workbench where an assortment of tools and devices were strewn. He’d need to straighten that mess up soon. With the wanted piece located Axle took hold of the device’s handle and stood from his stool. He took another quick look in the busy Wheeljack’s location and then turned and started toward Tracer.
____

She made sure that at least part of her was in constant contact with the CR pod. She wanted no space, in any fashion, to come between her and Smokescreen. It was her right hand that was now pressed lightly against the glass on the top of the pod. At the first sign of any growing condensation Tracer would gently swipe her had across the window removing it just so the mech’s face within remained unobstructed.

It hadn’t been long since Smokescreen was reintroduced to the inside of the pod. Even though he was still in plain view it still felt like those first few vorns they had been apart. It took time but she finally fell into a routine that helped her to cope while they on different sides of the galaxy. But this…this was just cruelty rearing its ugly head.

"I should have told you. I should have said something back then. I never wanted to hurt you. I never wanted you to think I didn’t trust you."

Tracer let out a low sign as she ran her hand across the glass again removing the small accumulation of water droplets. She had always trusted him. After all she was the one who went along with him even after he caught her trying to swipe those chips. She never even hesitated….she just trusted him…it felt right…normal.

“I never planned on any of this. All I planned on was you and I…after this damned war."

The sound of movement behind her had already been detected before Axle had even made it within five feet of her. The medic had raised his hand to his mouth after overhearing a last bit of what the femme had confessed but he was quickly cut off by her slightly off key voice.

“What is it, Axle?"

Axle shook his head remembering that the blue and white ‘Bot was a scout by function and was more than capable of processing sound much faster than most. He clamped his mouth shut for a moment as he tried to come up with something to say that didn’t involve what he had inadvertently overheard.

“I’m sorry, Tracer, but I’m going to need a sample of your energon. It’s necessary if I’m going to…"

The femme raised a hand stopping the medic before he finished. She already knew what he wanted and what it was for. And she was ready to give it up. Finally, for the first time since he had stepped up to her, and the occupied pod, Tracer turned around to face him. Her soft features were adorned by a troubled expression…her optics almost too bright to render a proper blue hue.

She tried to put up a front by forcing a small smile but it failed miserably. She offered Axle a slight nod and turned her head to the right giving him full view, and more importantly access to her main energon line.

Axle returned her apprehensive smile and small nod while he set to work removing precisely what he needed.

“He’ll be out soon."

“I know. And don’t worry…I don’t mind that you overheard."

Axle shifted uneasily on his feet…rocking slightly from side to side while attempting to keep the syringe from being jarred out of place.

“Uh…well….I didn’t mean to intrude."

There was a long silence which just made Axle all that more uncomfortable before the femme spoke up again.

“After. After everything’s over."

The medic wasn’t sure what she had meant but he had no time to start up a conversation that concerned her and Smokescreen and their complicated future after the war…besides he had his own plans for when that time came. Axle pulled the syringe out carefully once he had enough of the liquid that ran throughout her body and gave her a reassuring smile and a firm squeeze on her shoulder.
____

The smile that had graced Axle’s visage vanished while he watched Tracer turn her attention back to the CR pod and he made his way back to his workbench where he set the vial of energon down. He let out a heavy sigh as he took a small sample and placed it on an examination slide. The medic then placed the sample under the scope and began the process of taking the necessary readings…meticulously recording everything that popped up on the HUD in the eyepieces.

“I don’t think I’ll ever understand romantic relationships. They’re more trouble than they’re worth…sometimes."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Smokescreen85 » Tue Sep 18, 2012 7:20 am

Motto: "Transform and smoke 'em!"
Weapon: Twin Shoulder-Mounted Rocket Launchers
Wheeljack’s Lab

Wheeljack remained focused on the task at hand, his audio receptors only catching a little bit of what Axle was now saying. Something about taking an energon sample from Tracer. Yeah, good luck with that. The mad scientist was happy to be dealing with inanimate, non-sentient objects once again without the worry of how a certain troubled femme would react to what he was doing. The replicator made no arguments or complaints or other small talk. It was silent, allowing the mechanical engineer to perform his job and quickly. It was just how he liked to work.

After a few straight breems of intense work, Wheeljack soldered the last two new connections together before setting his tools down onto the workbench. He then replaced the side access cover and stood up from his stool, stretching his arm joints and servos in the process. “There, that should about do it," the white mech muttered quietly to himself, confident that at least the hardware portion of the modifications was now complete. All that was left was the software aspect of the replicator and then it should work...hopefully.

Attaching a cable to the back of the replicator, Wheeljack connected the other end to the side of a nearby terminal, granting him entry into the hard drive and internal operating system of the device. He immediately went to work on reprogramming his invention to accept the physical changes that had just been made as well as adding two new subroutines, one that would allow for chemicals of any kind to be reproduced and the other to allow the machine to scan and analyze the intended object for replication. That way ‘Jack didn’t have to manually program each element into the device, himself. I should’ve thought of that before.

It took another breem for the revisions in the software to be completed and also acknowledged by the replicator’s on board computer. Once finished, the mechanical engineer disconnected the cable and looked over at Axle, who had just muttered something regarding romantic relationships. “Yeah, I don’t get ‘em either," Wheeljack replied with a chuckle, wiping his actuators clean with a rag before tossing it aside. “Well, I’ve finished the modifications to my replicator. It should be able to handle the reproduction of chemicals now. I also added the ability for it to scan and analyze the object, chemical or otherwise, that is intended for replication. Thus, you don’t really have to break down each ingredient of the Syk anymore. However, I still suggest trying to rid the concoction of the hallucinogen element if possible. In the meantime, I’ll begin the testing phase and see if I can reproduce something simple at first before trying a more complex chemical."

Without another word, Wheeljack moved across the room and retrieved a flask of a harmless liquid solvent that the scientist primarily used to clean his tools and equipment. This should do just fine, the Autobot inventor thought as he regarded the chemical in his hand for an astrosecond before moving back over to the replicator. Tapping a green button on the side of the device, a clear panel slid open which allowed ‘Jack to place the flask within the machine. Once the scientist had removed his hand, the small panel closed again and locked into place. The engineer then initiated the scan cycle and watched as a beam of light cascaded across the flask in a brilliant display, recording every element of both the glass container and the solvent that it contained. Once that was completed, Wheeljack removed the flask from the replicator and then set the device for its final cycle - replication.

“Okay, here it goes," Wheeljack said, taking a deep intake of air into his systems before sparing a quick glance over at Axle. “Actuators crossed." Without further delay, the mad scientist activated the replicator and watched as more light filled the empty chamber within. Soon he would know if his modifications had actually worked or whether his invention would simply explode in his faceplate like so many before. I hope Smokey’s almost done in there, ‘cause I may need that CR pod sooner rather than later. Heh.
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Tue Sep 18, 2012 1:10 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
Science Lab

At the very least Ultra Magnus was not Prowl…and for all of the Autobots recently stationed in this quadrant that was reassuring, however the Duly Appointed Enforcer of the Tyrest Accord was just as much a slave to protocol as the strategist. Bothersome to say the least.

Perceptor listened quietly to the acting Commander’s worries and explanations without interrupting. Primus knew just how much wished to counter Magnus’ arguments the scientist remained stoic.

As soon as his lecture was concluded Perceptor made certain to acknowledge Ultra Magnus as though he took everything that was said to heart. But he knew that without testing performed with the first sample he was able to successfully refine he would never be able to further his progress. If that happened and Shockwave was able to progress unhindered the war’s outcome will surely be tipped in the Decepticons’ favor. That could not be allowed to happen.

“Of course, sir. I will do everything in my power to move the project along as swiftly and proficiently as possible."

Without further ado Ultra Magnus left the lab and moved on to his next assignment…something concerning a scouting mission.

“Prime would not allow it…initially, but if there were a possibility that the testing and the results were to save lives he certainly would not hesitate to sanction it."

Turning from the door, the scientist turned sniper moved back to his work station and resumed his work…musing out loud in his normal fashion.

“What is the loss of one life if that life was given up to save millions of others?"

Perceptor stopped his work and took hold of the beaker that Magnus had been holding just moments before. His image had been blurred in the Commander’s eyes, but it was also blurred to him…things had changed and so had he. He now had two functions…and if truth be told he now held another…potential sacrifice for the good of his race.
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Tue Sep 18, 2012 3:36 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
(OOC: I abhor doing this, but I had to split this post from my Perceptor one only because I usually post monsters in ‘Jack’s lab. I hope I never have to do this again…it saddens me.)

Wheeljack’s Lab

This was tedious. The whole reverse engineering thing. Axle wasn’t sure who had the easier job…Wheeljack and his reworking of his own invention or him with the proverbial chemical dissection. But at this point it time it really made little difference.

After a few breems Axle took his optics away from the eye pieces and settled down on the stool. Contrary to popular belief robots were subject to kinked wires and stuck pistons, and this point the medic believed he had both.

With a slight grunt of discomfort Axle ran his hand over the small of his back and pressed his chest forward. The stretch felt good but he knew before long the kink and the slight pain would return once he started back up.

“This little side job is gonna be the death of me."

He let out a disgruntled sigh while shaking his head and then leaned back down to continue where he had left off. Axle kept his focus on the small sample he had under the scope even when Wheeljack had announced that he had completed the reconfiguration of his invention. Thank the Matrix.

“That’s great…uh…'Jack."

When the engineer mentioned that the breakdown of the sample chemicals by hand was no longer necessary Axle pulled his head away from the scope and looked to the white masked mech. That was possibly THE best news he had heard since before he’d been brought in on this project.

“Well, now that’s great news I was already developing optic strain."

His cheerful expression faded, however, when he heard Wheeljack’s suggestion that they exclude the addition of the hallucinogen. If only that were possible. Axle looked down at the datapad he had been using while studying the sample. It contained the complete list of chemicals and their dose level, and on the bottom of the list was that damned hallucinogen. The dosage was still unknown.

“I’d love to keep it out, Wheeljack, but the sample I extracted from Tracer shows that it’d already been introduced with the last Syk push. It’s not a lot but it’s still enough to cause severe adverse effects if left out completely."

The sound of the replicator’s door shutting caught Axle’s attention making the medic spin around so as not to miss the test run of the inventor’s contraption. He even made sure to follow Wheeljack’s instructions and actually crossed his actuators.

“Um…’Jack…is it supposed to be making that noise?"

Axle stood up quickly and took a tentative step toward the device and the scientist. If this thing was going to explode it would be best to be as close as possible to its intended victim. Quick medical intervention was a high possibility.

“Wheeljack! If this thing blows up I’m gonna kill you!"
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby VkmSpouge » Tue Sep 18, 2012 4:25 pm

Forward Observation Lounge

The ride over to the Ark-22 was as comfortable as could be expected, space was generally very smooth travel as there was no turbulance unless you were being fired upon and with no Decepticons around there was no possibility of that. The Ark class ships were very impressive vessels. Freeway had idlly thought up ways to sabotage such a ship; rusting agents in engine control circuitry, viral implant in the navigation software, that kind of thing. He was prepared should there ever come a need to do it, like if Decepticons had taken control of one for instance. Hopefully that would never happen. It would be a shame to wreak havoc on such a fine vessel.

Moving through the corridors, Freeway chose to walk rather than drive simply because it offered him a better chance to study the ship and get used to its layout, where the escape pods were for instance, should anything calamitous happen between now and leaving for the planet. The Throttlebot headed for the observation lounge at the front of the ship where supposedly the best views were to be had and where they would get their final briefing. Freeway was keen to learn more about these psychotic apes that were inhabitating the planet below.

The doors swooshed open and the first thing that struck Freeway was the view. The planet Earth was certainly a beauty. Plenty of liquid, vapour and solid water. The hydro-energy potential alone was just incredible. There were clouds, big masses of them indicating storms. Storms were high winds so there was another source of potential energy. The light from the yellow star could easily be harnessed too. How much energon could be created from that alone? Then add to it the mineral wealth. Damn. And with all that energy there was also life. The green on the land surface indicating a lot of organic life. The place must have been teeming.

“If we're planning on any aquatic missions myself and Sparky are already well camoflouged for that," said Freeway pointy to the similarly blue Nova Strike. He noted an Aerial-hotshot-bot in the room along with Prowl and Ultra Magnus.
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Devastron » Tue Sep 18, 2012 9:57 pm

Weapon: Energo-Sword
Message from Kup

>>"Ultra Magnus, Prowl, we have a situation. It seems that Hot Rod along with several other Autobots have just bounced down to Earth. As far as I know this was an unauthorized mission. Normally I would chalk this up to some youthful mischief except I instructed Howlstrike to keep an optic on them. Now Howlstrike is not responding to my calls. In addition the group who went down with Hot Rod included Bots like Hardhead, Warpath and Ricochet. I'm sure you'll agree those are not the young mischievous types. I am guessing they have some sort of attack on Decepticons involved but I am taking the Protectobots and Ironhide down to be prepared for anything"<<
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Smokescreen85 » Sat Sep 22, 2012 5:16 pm

Motto: "Transform and smoke 'em!"
Weapon: Twin Shoulder-Mounted Rocket Launchers
Wheeljack’s Lab

Wheeljack was disappointed when Axle revealed that the hallucinogen could not be left out of the Syk mix without the risk of grievous and possibly life threatening side effects. Tracer’s systems were already so sensitive that even the slightest alteration in the chemical compound that she’d been exposed to could cause irreparable damage to her internal mechanisms. It was for that reason that weaning her slowly off the narcotic was so important. Going cold turkey, as the humans would say, was simply not an option.

“I understand, Axle," the mechanical engineer relented as he kept his optics on the portable replicator that was still in the process of reproducing a flask of liquid solvent. The noise it was making was a tad loud and had made the field medic more than just a little nervous. “Well, considering how old it is, I’m not surprised my invention is a bit boisterous not to mention somewhat on the clunky side." Wheeljack cast a sideways glance towards the medic. “But I’m sure it won’t explode, so you won’t have to kill me. Heh."

The mad scientist returned his attention to the replicator as the device’s final sequence completed, the light within slowly diminishing by the astrosecond. “I think we have something here," Wheeljack muttered quietly, but just loud enough for Axle to hear him. With the brilliance inside now gone, all that was left was some white smoke, masking the results of the replication process. ‘Jack stepped in closer and opened the glass panel and carefully reached inside until he had found what he was looking for.

“Ah, there you are!" Wheeljack exclaimed as he withdrew his hand from the replicator and produced a flask of the solvent, which appeared to be a perfect copy of what he had just scanned moments ago. However, to be absolutely sure the solvent was exactly the same, additional tests needed to be run. “Well, it looks like solvent...." the engineer stated as he held the flash up to his nose, "...and it smells like solvent, but I need to make sure that it is solvent."

Moving away from the replicator, which was now powering down, Wheeljack placed the new flask onto a worktable and grabbed a hand held scanner. After a quick analysis of the reproduced chemical, the engineer was able to determine that the solvent had been recreated successfully. “I have good news!" The Autobot inventor declared as he turned back around to face Axle once more. “Believe it or not, the replicator worked! Of course, solvent is a very basic chemical and no where near as complex as Syk along with whatever else Oil Slick mixed in for bad measure. The next step is to test the replicator with a more intricate solution. Perhaps a very small sample of the narcotic, itself. If that’s also a success, then we can simply replicate the rest of the vile repeatedly until we are well stocked. Agreed?"
_________

The nanite-rich fluid within the tight confines of the CR unit finally began to evacuate as Smokescreen’s optics flickered back online again. The rallybot let out a low groan as the rest of his systems began to power up, his HUD showing the progress of each until all were at a full 100%. Once the liquid that had surrounded him was completely drained, the door opened with a hiss and the diversion expert was free from the coffin-like pod. Thankfully, his stay there had not been too long and had provided him with the apt amount of rest that his new body required. Hopefully, now he would be back to his old self again, at least in the physical sense.

Climbing out of the CR unit, Smokescreen’s optics immediately located Tracer who was positioned directly next to the pod, maintaining a constant vigil until his repair cycle had been completed. Even after their intense argument, her loyalty to him had not faltered one bit. Thinking back on it, he now understood her reasoning for not being up front with him from the beginning in regards to everything she had been through. She was simply thinking of his own well being, not wanting to burden him further. The thing she hadn’t understood was that he wanted to be burdened by her. He wanted that responsibility in order to save her from the Syk and ultimately from herself. His physical strength may not be the greatest, but his mental prowess was more powerful than ever.

“Hey there, good lookin’," Smokescreen said to Tracer as he turned to face her, his rebuilt body now fully painted with his usual red and blue color scheme as well as the 38s prominently displayed on both door wings. Smokey briefly glanced down at his newly applied paint job and smiled, but not as widely as when his attention returned to the troubled femme. “Well, I guess I’m as good as new. I feel strong, but I suppose I should still take it a bit easy for a while and not overdo it. At least I’m not naked anymore. Heh." The rallybot chuckled as he stepped in closer to the scout, taking her left hand into his right. “Of course, I’m sure you probably preferred me in the buff, didn’t you, Trace? Don't lie now. I saw the look on your faceplate before. You couldn't take you optics off me. But, that's okay, because I couldn't take mine of you, either."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Ember » Mon Sep 24, 2012 9:11 pm

Motto: "I'm not psycho...I just like psychotic things."
Message from Hex

>>"Prowl! Or whoever the hell is in charge! It’s Hex! A bunch of us followed Rodimus down planet side! We found the ‘Cons but we’re takin’ a beating! You gotta send reinforcements like yesterday! These are our coordinates!"<<

Forward Observation Lounge

It seemed odd, but for a ‘Bot who had spent so much time on the surface of the planet they were currently stationed above, that Bumblebee was actually taking heavy breaths in order to express just how quickly he had been moving in order to make it to his current location.

The little yellow mech came to a stop just outside the door to the lounge and tried to catch his “breath”. After a few astroseconds Bumblebee entered the room and glanced to all the mech present. To Nova he flashed a broad smile and a nod. The ranger was a good mech if not a bit talkative…although he should be grateful Nova Strike was not Bluestreak. That thought of the gunner brought another smile to his face.

Bee quickly cleared his thoughts and made his way to stand in front of both Ultra Magnus and Prowl. He offered both mechs a crisp salute.

“Bumblebee reporting as ordered, sirs."

Wheeljack’s Lab

Axle looked to his scientific cohort with an abundant amount of skepticism. He had heard a lot of stories…some of which were actually confirmed by the scientist himself…that a good majority of Wheeljack’s inventions usually wind up exploding in people’s faces.

“You’ll have to excuse my cynicism, but I’m just going by what I’ve heard from others…and well…from you."

The medic quieted down…and took several steps back…when Wheeljack’s device finally completed its cycle. And once the replicator was actually complete and he decided that it was safe, Axle stepped forward and leaned in closer so as to get a good look at the flask once it was removed.

Wheeljack’s exclamation gave Axle a slight start causing the former doctor to nearly jump backwards and away from the replicator. He let out a laugh when he realized that the scientist wasn’t about to tell him that that things were about to go to the Pit and instead that the device had possibly worked.

“Okay, now I’m surprised. No offense, ‘Jack. It’s just…well…"

Axle shut his mouth in an attempt to save face and not upset the engineer.

“Yeah. I agree."

Axle stepped up closer and took a good look at the flask containing the replicated solvent and then back down to the vial containing the Syk. There wasn’t a lot to work with and if they used too much…well if that happened so many things could go wrong.

“There isn’t a lot to keep working with. We’re gonna have to get this right the first time."

The medic scooped up the data slate he had been taking notes on while examining the sample. The contents of the chemical mixture was broken down into its most basic elements...including the amounts of each that had been utilized. Of course those steps had already completed when Wheeljack had told him that it wouldn’t be necessary. However, the final component to make the concoction whole was hallucinogen. It was present in Tracer’s current dosage and as such it was needed in this mixture.

“Alright. Let’s get this party started."

Axle flashed Wheeljack an uneasy smirk.
____

Tracer had stood up when the CR pod began its power down sequence. She had been sitting watch for the entire cycle but now that it was complete she wasn’t sure she was ready to face him after their last discussion. Too late now. She noticed that his optics were the first to come online and even though she couldn’t see as well as she usually could Tracer was still happy to see those blue orbs light up.

The scout met his gaze and for a moment she simply stared. She flashed him a small smile at his very first comment.

“I should be the one saying that to you."

Tracer let out a chuckle while Smokescreen looked over himself. To her he looked…the same. Perhaps a bit more streamlined but he was still Smokescreen no matter what form he took on or what paint job he was sporting.

“Taking it easy is probably a wise choice. Besides, I can’t move as fast as I usually do…hard to see."

Tracer offered the former ralleybot a halfhearted smirk and tapped the side of her head next to her right optic before she stepped in a bit closer to him.

“I don’t care what you look like, Smokescreen, as long as I have you."

She paused for a moment before she flashed him a sultry smile…

“I have to admit I really didn’t mind you waiting so long to have your paint job done…"

Tracer was about to finish her statement when she suddenly realized what Smokescreen had said. She gave him a broad smile and stepped in even closer to him. The scout set her right hand on his shoulder and leaned in but stopped almost suddenly.

The blue and white femme pulled back and dropped her head in her hand.

>>"Hey Trace! It’s Sides. Just thought you should know I got Razr here and he’s real upset that I’m not you. Heh. I think he wants to see yah so how’s about you meet me outside your quarters and we’ll have a little prisoner exchange…I hand Razr over to you and you hand yourself over to me. I’ll see ya in what…10 minutes? Yeah, ten sounds good. Later sweetspark!"<<

“He has Razr."
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Re: Autobot Vessel Ark-22 - Far From Home

Postby Marcus Rush » Tue Sep 25, 2012 2:31 pm

Weapon: Automatic Acid-Pellet Gun
Front Observation Lounge

Ultra Magnus pivoted on his heel and accepted the data pad from Prowl. His optics swiftly absorbed the mission profile that Prowl and the currently absent Silverbolt had proposed. It was thorough, though he had expected that from the military strategist and flight commander. It was in their base programming, it was what made them effective at their functions. Offering a brief nod to the last arriving member of the team, Magnus set the tablet down onto the polished table surface.

"I trust all exams were without incident, as well as rearming protocols." He paused as he glanced over to Slingshot who huffed and folded his arms over his chest in a pout.

His optics returned to Bumblebee as the smaller Autobot entered the chamber. Nova Strike gave a quick greeting to his new friend. By reputation, both Autobots had been dubbed as among the toughest per size. Nova Strike took on a lot of traits his previous special units commander eons ago back on Cybertron during the early days of the war. Never give up, Never surrender sort of mechanism that Magnus appreciated. Prowl's choice for this operation in that regard was spot on. If things did get dicey then who better to have on the front than a Ranger who specialized in the unpredictable? Of course Bumblebee's abilities were well recorded throughout the historical tracks. Anyone capable of going into the heart of Kaon just to get intelligence on Megatron's next offensive or even his refueling schedule, that took barrings.

Freeway on the other hand, Magnus had worked with the Throttlebots before. Most of them were unique in their own right and tended to at least be constructive. Freeway was the odd mech out. A comedian by choice, but lacked the finesse and delivery matrix for the task. Not to mention most of the limericks or stories or one liners were lost on him anyways. Baring that however, Freeway was absolutely the most qualified at what he did best. If it weren't for him, many of the Throttlebots not to mention active Autobots would be eliminated every time a retreat had to be staged or a base had to be established and defended. So with that in mind, Ultra Magnus could endure a touch of bad comedy.

The Aerialbots were another matter. Silverbolt had come down with a mysterious infection of the fuel intake and required a few days rest. Air Raid was well probably not happy that this was nothing more than a Scouting Operation. Slingshot had been the only flier to show up. Magnus frowned with the realization that one lone military aircraft flying over the scout zone would probably raise more questions than would a trio. Counter intuitive but it made sense.

"Let us finalize the business at hand."

He stepped back and pressed a button on the table surface. A small cone of light erupted from its center and consolidated to colored mesh of landscape. The valley was elongated with a glacier lake at its lowest point near the far northern end. Ice capped peaks ringed the valley with small passes carved by narrow dried riverbeds of ice and snow. Along the downward slopes small patches of scrub brush before delving deeper into the thicker jungle that swarmed the lake further in. Chasms and gorges had been carved out through glaciers eons ago, deep and lined by sheer cliffs of mineral wealth. "This is our target area, A mountainous terrain that is arid for the most part, but lower elevations are covered in dense foliage masses. Sufficed to say that this area is populated albeit sparsely. Despite our best efforts and scans, finding a position on the surface devoid of organic life has not been very successful."

Magnus flipped the switch on the controls and narrowed the feed. "This valley here has displayed very few humanoid life signs but that is irrelevant. The reason why I have chosen this region for exploration is because of its mineral deposits that could prove vital to our coming colony." The image switched again this time to show molecular shapes of various ores and metals that Cybertronians most required and that were supposedly abundant in the abandoned region.

"This area, from scans of human historical channels, was once inhabited. So you can expect to encounter ruins and other architectural displays and monuments. Prowl, I want you to gather an Archivist for this mission as well. While this is a military survey, this is only a temporary situation. I want to be able to reconstruct this land to its natural state once the Decepticons have been forced from the sector... permanently. In the meantime. You are to locate two specific conditions. A location with suitable coverage, an off shoot gorge or even a large cavern. And secondly a readily accessible power source. We can easily deal with exposure via holographic emitters and solar towers, but those will take time to establish."

Magnus shut off the hologram and looked over towards the other officers who had gathered. "This survey is important to our long term defense of this system. Mission Limiters are standard. You are to avoid contact with the indigenous hominids of the region. You are to avoid combat where possible, If these things are unavoidable, such as interactions with the Humans, make sure your avatars have been equipped and properly adjusted for the master life forms of this planet."

As he prepared to go into the purpose of the survey, beyond the simple description of the colony, Magnus' comm terminal clicked on. He pressed the activation toggle and immediately linked with Kup. His optical guards furrowed and dimmed as the link fell silent after Kup brought him up to date. "Hot Rod?" His voice staggered briefly before he regained his composure. This was not right. This Rodimus was becoming an unwanted variable, as Perceptor would qualify him, an unknown quantity. However, Warpath nor Hardhead were known for going off the deep end, even if they were military specialists who craved action. Magnus was keenly aware that he had not played his hand of command yet... and that had cost them yet another advantage, unity. He would have to specifically rectify that himself. Even if it meant going to battle to stop this unauthorized raid. Giving a nano second of thought, he transmitted his intentions to Kup. He would bounce there as reinforcements to the Protectobots and himself. Not necessarily knocking the abilities of Hot Spot, Magnus himself had to be present. And that meant he would have to bring support to help legitimize his current position.

Once the message was complete, Magnus turned and faced the survey team. "Unfortunately I will have to keep my part in this briefing short. There are other matters of great importance that require my attention. Prowl I want you to complete the rest of this briefing in route if necessary. Bumblebee will serve as your second in command while Silverbolt is laid up. He and Air Raid will be placed on emergency dispatch should you require Air Support. In the meantime, Slingshot, your services are going to be required in another avenue of action. Prowl if necessary I want you to acquire the services of Rewind to fill that Archivist's role I originally mentioned. His capacity should prove invaluable to your current operation."

He handed Prowl a separate data pad. On it was a sensor frequency that he wanted to keep classified until they had bounced to the surface. A line on the top of the slate simply stated, 'A Request from Perceptor.' As the others stood and offered a salute to Magnus, he gave a curt nod. "Good luck fellow Autobots. We are counting on your speedy completion of this mission. The very fate of our Earth Defense Strategy may very well depend on it."

With that Magnus gave a final salute to Prowl and pulled Slingshot out of the briefing lounge. Both transformed and began a mad dash towards the nearest bounce chamber. Both Autobots wondering what exactly awaited them down below.
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