- Motto: ""I will do for Optimus Primal what Optimus Primal cannot do for himself.""
- Weapon: Energon Cutlass
Alright, things are starting to close up, and Strongarm seems to finally be safe. But as the Autobots start to escape, things aren't as they seem...
Strongarm limped to the escape pods and looked behind his shoulder. It was a bad habit he'd picked up after being roasted, beaten, shot at, and attacked. Hey...people did that. Just as he was about to get into one of the pods, a sniper shot pierced his leg, and he fell, unable to move. Wideload grabbed him and pulled him to cover while Brawn opened fire with his plasma blasters.
"I'll...be fine," Strongarm said. "Faced....worse these...past few days..."
Wideload nodded and shoved Strongarm inside the escape pod. Behind them, Ironhide opened the hangar bay doors. The sniper shots continued to rain down, and Brawn continued to return fire. Stratosphere transformed into vehicle mode and a claw extended from his hangar, placing the five injured Aerialbots safely inside.
"Go on!" Ironhide said, hopping into his own escape pod. "Get the injured back to base!"
Crosshairs saluted and crawled into the escape pod beside Strongarm, who was unable to fly the pod in his condition. As the pods ejected, Stratosphere followed at a distance. He hoped that Optimus would be close behind them...
Optimus kicked Megatron into the fire and activated his jets. Going full speed, he rocketed toward the hangar bay. Along the way, he had to take several detours due to Decepticon fire.
"Stop that Autobot!" cried Dirge.
The diminuitive Dead End hopped on Optimus' back and dug his claws deep into the jetpack. Optimus groaned in pain, whirled around, and flew straight up so that Dead End's back was scraping against the wall.
"OW!" Dead End cried. "Stop! AH!"
Dead End released Optimus and fell back to the ground. Optimus continued to blast upward toward the hangar. Dirge, Thrust, and Skywarp followed him, firing multiple missiles. Optimus dodged them all and...stopped.
"You lose, Prime!"
There stood Starscream, weapons raised. Behind the Decepticon Air Warrior, the hangar bay was closed. Determined not to lose, Optimus whirled around, aimed his guns at the three oncoming Air Warriors, and fired.
Stratosphere groaned as Thundercracker and Ramjet, who had followed the Autobots, released a barrage of deadly fire. It took everything the big Autobot had to keep from whirling around and terminating the insolent pests. He wanted to more than anything, but the Aerialbots were counting on him. Instead, he activated an automatic defense turret, which popped out of the top of his plane mode and opened fire. The Decepticons dodged the fire. At that point, Ransack, Mindwipe, and Skystalker had joined the chase.
"Got to get home," Stratosphere muttered.
But could he save the Aerialbots' lives, or would the five Autobots perish inside him?