Ok, a little background. I wrote this back in 2000, when I first discovered there were still people on Earth other than me who were into Transformers (and weren't children). Browsing some of the newsgroups of the time, I found one dedicated to fanfic. I set out to explore this brave new world. What you're about to read is the result, unchanged since it's completion eight years ago. And may Primus have mercy on your soul.
Ho hum, another day. Two Decepticon attacks on oilrigs, one on a nuclear power plant and three more Decepticons came through the spacebridge. Routine. Optimus Prime had dealt with them all. Everyone agreed his leadership had saved many lives that day, as it had on every other day. So why was he so bored? It wasn’t like his work didn’t challenge him. The near constant threat of a semi-psychotic opponent reducing his head to molten metal with a fusion cannon certainly kept him on his toes. But it didn’t excite him any more.
He remembered the early days of the war. Assembling a small but dedicated force to push back the Decepticons. Going out for a pint of oil after a successful mission. Chatting up one of the female Transformers. The energon-consumption contests (First one to short circuit s a wuss!) Leadership robbed him of all that. He had to be staid and respectable. Sod it. He needed a holiday.
“Teletraan 1. Locate the hottest mechanoid holiday spot within Omega Supreme s maximum range." Teletraan 1 began working, throwing up suggestions on its screen. Prime began reading
Ho hum, another day. Two unsuccessful attacks on oilrigs, one on a nuclear power plant and three new warriors arrived from Cybertron. Routine. As always, the accursed Autobots had stopped the attacks, despite the arrival of the three warriors. Despite Megatron's magnificent leadership and planning, the Autobots and Optimus bloody Prime had put paid to any chances of the Decepticons winning the war this year. Worst of all, it didn’t particularly bother him. It was boring if anything. Even Prime nearly taking his head off with a laser axe hadn't really excited him. Sure, it kept the reflexes sharp, but not much else.
It used to be so different. The initial attacks on defenceless Autobots, then the appearance of Prime, the long war. The death. The destruction. Killing some annoying Decepticon when plans failed. (That was the only reason Starscream had been on the ill-fated flight into space.) It had been fun. Now, he just formulated new plans and watched as they failed. Sod it. He needed a holiday.
“Soundwave! What are the best places for an enormous robotic killing machine to unwind? Soundwave began reeling off possibilities. Megatron listened, considering.
So it was that two days later, the two most deadly enemies in the galaxy were both reading brochures from the Rigel 7 Mechanised Holiday Planet.
The next day, Prime gathered the Autobots together and told them of his decision.
“My fellow Autobots: I’m knackered. So, I'm handing command over to Jazz while I go for a holiday. If there’s any trouble, get in touch, but I’d really appreciate a bit of quiet unless the situation is dire. Teletraan 1 suggests the Decepticons will be quiet while they get over their latest setback. So, I'll see you all in a couple of weeks.
At the same time, Megatron addressed the Decepticon forces.
“Right. I'm going on holiday. Soundwave is in command. DON’T try anything clever while I m gone, just get everyone back in one piece and ready for our next attempt to take over the galaxy. Soundwave knows how to get in touch if anything goes wrong, but I absolutely DO NOT want to be disturbed. Right. I’m off."
Both leaders left at the same time. Megatron should have arrived first, but someone let Starscream operate the spacebridge controls, so Megatron spent a few hours on Kronos, in gun mode, listening to a Klingon opera. Pausing only to throw Starscream through a wall on his return, Megatron stepped back into the spacebridge, with Soundwave at the controls this time. Optimus Prime and Megatron both arrived on Rigel 7 at the same time. They didn’t see each other for a while, as they arrived at separate parts of the planet.
After two hours, the Rigel Hilton was booking in its latest guests. It wasn't until both looked up from signing in that the deadly enemies realised what had happened.
“Give up now, Megatron!"
As they had both had to hand in all weapons at customs, they prepared for hand-to-hand combat. Just as Megatron cocked his arm back to throw his first punch, the hotel manager coughed politely.
“What?!" the two opponents snarled at him.
“Gentlebots, I must ask you too refrain from violence in the hotel, and indeed throughout Rigel 7. Violence is prohibited."
“And what are you going to do about it?" Megatron asked with a glare that had made entire regiments shiver. The manager hardly looked like a threat to a being that half the galaxy feared.
“Me? Nothing. But they would be most displeased," the manager said, pointing outside. Two robots stood outside. Each was about the size of Superion standing on Omega Supreme's shoulders. Prime and Megatron glanced at each other, and reluctantly dropped out of their combat stances.
“If you are interested in challenging each other, Rigel 7 offers a range of competitive recreations that are totally safe." Prime and Megatron glanced at each other again.
"Very well," Prime said. “What can you offer?"
Back on Earth, things were getting tense. The Decepticons had left their base. Jazz had led an Autobot force to counter any scheme the Decepticons had in mind.
“Freeze, Decepti-creeps!" Jazz yelled, levelling his rifle. Skywarp levelled his right arm to start shooting when Soundwave stepped in front of him.
“We intend no harm to you or the Earthlings. We merely came out for some exercise. We've been cooped up for two days now. With Megatron on holiday, there’s very little to do," Soundwave explained.
“That must be the spacebridge activity we detected a two days ago," Bumblebee whispered to Jazz. He felt pretty uncomfortable, seeing as he d had to climb up Grimlock to be able to whisper at Jazz. Now, Bumblebee was hanging off Grimlocks' nose.
“Yeah. It might mean they re telling the truth. If they are, there's not much point staring a fight." Jazz motioned Blaster closer. “Contact Teletraan 1 and see if you can verify Megatron has left the planet. In the meantime…" Jazz turned back to the Decepticons and spoke in his normal voice. “We don’t have much to do, mind if we join you?" Before Soundwave could reply, a startled Bumblebee, propelled by Grimlock sneezing, hit him in the face.
“Me Grimlock need hay fever cure."
“Give it up, Megatron! You can t win!"
“Never! I'll crush you like an insect!"
The table tennis ball whizzed past Megatron s shoulder. Megatron threw his bat on the floor, where a small cleaning-bot picked it up. Megatron was about to kick it when he heard a cough from one of the security droids outside. He spun around and stomped out of the building. Prime followed him.
“So, I've defeated you at all the sports this planet has to offer."
“You lie, Prime! The football match was a draw!"
“Only because an insane Decepticon from the future invaded the pitch, shot the referee with a particle cannon, declared himself a living god and demanded you help him take over the universe." Before the security droids had been able to react, the temporal police had arrested Galvatron and pulled him back to his own time, where Rodimus Prime hammered the living daylights out of him, screaming, “No more bloody time travelling! We had enough problems last time! Not that Megatron or Prime were aware of this."
“That s beside the point! The match was a draw!" Megatron shouted.
“There s only one way to settle this!" Prime reached behind him. Megatron heaved a sigh of relief. Prime must be going for a weapon. A fight at last!
Prime pulled out a deck of cards and a small folding table with a green felt surface.
“Find the lady” Prime said as he began shuffling the cards.
“D'oh!" Megatron slapped his forehead, and tried to fight down the fast growing sense of despair.
On Earth, things were going better. Jazz and Blaster were educating Soundwave in the delights of Earth music. Sideswipe and Sunstreaker were racing Breakdown, Drag Strip and Wildrider. The Aerialbots were rehearsing an aerobatic show with Starscream and Thundercracker. Skywarp, Bumblebee, Hound and Ravage were getting very giggly on some vintage energon Hound had found last week. The others were all watching a five-a-side soccer match between the Combaticons and the Protectobots. Things were pretty evenly matched, especially between Blades and Vortex whenever someone sent the ball into the air.
“We really should do this more often," Blaster said.
"I should be so lucky, lucky, lucky, lucky," Soundwave, in cassette player form, sang.
“Here, try my Queen tape," Cliffjumper said, pressing Soundwave's eject button. The tape deck flew open, throwing a tape across the field.
“Woooooooah! Rumble yelled, transforming. He landed in the middle of Hound s increasingly drunk group. They all burst out laughing. “What’s so funny, you bunch of drunken bums?"
No one replied, but Skywarp controlled his laughing long enough to throw Rumble into the sky. He landed on Thundercracker, who did a barrel roll, sending Rumble plummeting back down.
“Woooooooah! Not again!" Rumble landed on a suspiciously convenient haystack.
“Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?" Soundwave joined Freddie Mercury in the unlikeliest duet ever. Rumble shook his head, shut down his audio receptors and went to sleep. After waiting a few minutes to be sure he was asleep, Hound crept towards Rumble and spray-painted the words "Kick me" on his back. He crept away, trying not to giggle. After a few steps he fell on the floor and burst out laughing.
“Any way the wind bloooooows meeeeeee." Soundwave finished listening to the tape and transformed. “This music is most interesting. Do you have any more?"
”Wait here; I'll be right back." Jazz transformed and sped back to base, trying to remember whether Prime gave him his heavy metal compilation tape back.
On Rigel 7, Optimus Prime and Megatron were engaged in an energon-drinking contest.
“First one to short circuit’s a wuss!" Prime cried as he drained his fifth energon cube. Megatron raised his fifth cube and drank half before stopping. After a few moments he drained the rest. He carried on with the contest, unaware that Prime was acknowledged as the hardest drinking Autobot.
After three hours, Megatron was unconscious under the table, while Prime was unaffected.
"Finally, a chance to enjoy myself." Prime walked out of the bar. He recalled seeing a singles bar somewhere…
On Earth, Jazz had the combined Autobot and Decepticon forces playing air guitar to Queen's "Hammer To Fall." Laserbeak and Ravage were feeling left out, owing to their lack of arms. Ravage was especially unstable, seeing as he'd got though four cubes of Hounds vintage energon. Laserbeak was annoyed as the totally hammered Skywarp kept tearing past him at Mach 4 after teleporting behind him. Hound was lying on his back, moving his arms and legs in arcs along the ground.
"What are you doing, Hound?" Brawn asked.
"Making shnow angelsh."
"There's no snow," Brawn replied, confused. Hound looked around, shrugged, and generated a hologram of snow. He then carried on waving his arms. Brawn gave up, and joined in with a guitar solo.
"Hey, guys, why don't we have a barbecue?" Blaster asked. Everyone stooped and looked at him. "I mean, we can get some food in, cook it using Slag's breath, and then get wasted."
"Works for me," Starscream replied.
"Then it's time for the hammer to, hammer to fall," Soundwave sang.
Megatron woke up and realised he'd lost another contest. After half an hour, he remembered how to walk, and headed after Prime. He found him two hours later, whispering sweet nothings into a lady mechanoid's audio unit.
"Prime! I demand a rematch!"
"I'm over here," Prime said. Megatron uncrossed his optics and faced Prime. "Look, I've beaten you at everything on this planet. Can't we just have a relaxing holiday?" The lady-bot got up and walked away. "Now look what you've done."
"That's it! A contest! First one to pull wins!" Megatron stretched, readying the dance steps that had never failed in the singles bars on Cybertron.
"You're on." Prime wasn't worried, as a female GoBot had been giving him the eye all evening. Megatron started dancing, and fell over. Prime finished his energon cube and walked over to the GoBot.
"Can I buy you a drink?"
The next morning, Jazz woke up with a pounding headache. He activated his visual receptors and realised it was because Rumble had activated his pile drivers while sleeping. Jazz picked Rumble up and threw him half a mile into the sky. Soundwave was burbling incoherently.
"We will, we will rock you 'cos she ain't no friend of mine" Soundwave fell silent again.
Blaster woke up, realised he was upside down, stood up, and walked unsteadily over to Jazz.
"You know the best cure for a hangover?"
"Not so loud! What?"
"Sorry. Keep drinking," Blaster whispered.
"Good plan." Within thirty minutes, all the Transformers were awake and partying. The only low point was Thundercracker using a stungun on Soundwave to stop him singing.
The manager of the Rigel Hilton finally lost his patience. Optimus Prime and Megatron had spent the last week engaged in various non-violent contests, which were beginning to annoy the other guests.
"Gentlebots, I'm afraid I must ask you both to leave. You are disturbing other guests."
"But we haven't broken any rules," Prime pointed out. Megatron was having trouble speaking, as his CPU had lost the location of his speech programmes after the last drinking session.
"If you leave we are prepared to offer you a crate of energon." Prime and Megatron looked at each other. Sensing they were about to refuse, the manager carried on.
"Two crates of energon." Another look. "Each." Another look, but a little different.
"We agree," Prime said. Megatron nodded vigorously.
"Excellent. Your bags are already packed and a complimentary shuttle is waiting outside. Goodbye." Porters rushed prime and Megatron out of the hotel before they could argue.
Back on Earth, both leaders found their followers barely able to string a sentence together. This wasn't a problem for the Decepticons, as Megatron still couldn't speak. He merely spent the next week stomping around, silently seething. Even writing didn't work, as not one Decepticon could focus properly.
Prime realised the futility of arguing with the incoherent Autobots, and joined in with the drinking. After seven days, they began to sober up. Prime was thinking about the last few weeks, and talking with Prowl.
"You realise that if we could keep the energon flowing, this war would be over."
"Slight problem, Prime. We've used up five percent of the available energy on this planet."
"Blimey. Let's hope these parties don't happen too often then." At this point Hound rushed out.
"Prime! The Decepticons are attacking a power plant!"
"Autobots! Transform and roll out!"
At the power plant, Soundwave was producing energon cubes.
"Here we are, born to be kings, we're the Princes of the Universe!"
"Soundwave! What are you doing?" Megatron yelled.
"Uh um nothing, nothing."
At that point, the Decepticons were interrupted by the arrival of the Autobots. As the two forces started fighting, Prime and Megatron grappled in hand-to-hand combat. Even as they went through their normal array of banter (“Give it up” “Never!" etc), both thought the same thing.
"Aaah, this is more like it."
For anyone who hasn't seen Spotlight: Sledge
(and why not?!), my gritty and dark fanfiction piece "Holiday" is posted here