"I didn’t capture him; he walked in of his own free will~. You came because you wanted your mate back, not because I forced you. Technicalities, Skyfire. Technicalities are everything." He’s a smug bastard. Not a god, though.
R’youdn smiled privately, “He is, he is~. Oh, he will be helping me. Out of obligation, if nothing else.”
"Quite right," He nodded, pleased with the answer, "So consider what might happen if an impossible multitude of them were all suddenly opened in one place. What could you predict might occur?"
R’youdn sighed heavily at the question, “Oh dear, I suppose they found him, then. Still unconcious? I would have thought he’d come to by now…Ah well, I’ll take a look at him later.” A flippant flick of his silver hair.
Starscream is all dead weight; lucky for you kids that he’s not that big or heavy.
When they approached the door the guards stopped them, “Uh-uh. Where do you think you’re taking him?”
"Technicalities are holding all of the cards and telling your partner to draw anyway." He arched an optical ridge. "Do not attempt to excuse your actions as those of others, either out of some self-regulated game or strict rules placed by another, when the truth is plainly evident. It is an insult to the pursuit of knowledge."
"Then you are an extraordinarily unlucky individual who should have abandoned his soon to be destroyed universe before it tore itself apart. If that was all you needed me for, I am finding an exit now."
The shuttle’s wings flared. “No. You will not touch Starscream. I will not allow it.”
::Boys, if you would.:: A ping, showing his coordinates.
All these metal people? Jetfire huffs at the remark before snapping “Cybertron!” to the man’s question, not caring if it was rhetorical or not.
"Your friend did not say anything about being passed out." Jetstorm’s optics narrowed behind his visor. "What have you been doing with him?"
The answer of that question became fairly obvious when the cell block’s door opened. Their optics grew wide while their vents hitched, and for a very brief, terrible moment Jetfire and Jetstorm thought the seeker was dead.
Both of them would rush to be on either side of Starscream, Jetstorm gently grabbing at his face and lifting it up to look into his optics while Jetfire checked for any signs of damage the seeker may have suffered.
»Starscream has been located.« Jetstorm pings to Skyfire as Jetfire shifted his attention over to the chains around his wrists, looking for ways to undo them. »He is not appearing to be well however.«
"Everything is restricted by Physics. One only needs some mastery of transubstantiation in order to manipulate them…" He smiled disarmingly, "You are wrong about my lack of empathy, though. I happen to be the only one in the whole of our world that protects the ever-dwindling human population, and it is I that is trying to restore the order of this world, after what our goddess has done to it…" He growled, "All will be in order soon…provided that I get the help that I need."
The opened were all written in glyphs; a language so ancient that it seemed even their owner had trouble translating at times as several translation texts also lay open.
"That creature, the Grey Ghost, is a legend among our species. Once a lover of our Queen Goddess, he was considered one of the most beautiful Seelie of all. When he fell from her favor, she disfigured him so horribly that no one could ever stand to look at him again. Enraged by this, he turned from the realm of the Seelie, violated our sacred oath, abused our knowledge for self-serving purposes and became a dark creature; what we call the ‘Unseelie’. He was the original. He preys on beautiful creatures to steal their beauty out of spite. His power is immense. No weapon can touch him…and your mate not only managed to defeat him, but capture him. That is a rare feat, indeed."
"I wanted to know what you had learned. What you uncovered from his body. Dark secrets that have been long lost could be useful to me…and depending on how well you understand, you might be even more useful. I know what you are, Skyfire. You understand the weight and power of knowledge over all else, I can see this. You have the sort of mind that restores order where there is none, and it is order that I sorely need."
"So tell me this: what do you understand about portals?"
The guard shook his head innocently, “Haven’t touched him. Only boss has been in with him since he came.”
Starscream’s optics were offline. His helm rolled uselessly as his face was lifted and looked over. His field was still prickling with the faintest hint of energy; seems his frame had locked itself in stasis from lack of energy. There was little physical damage, aside from a few feathering lines of singes across his neck and down his arms indicating he may have been shocked several times.
If Jetstorm looked closely to the hinges on the wall that attached to the chains, he would see that they were already loosened from Starscream’s efforts to struggle against them. It shouldn’t take much more to finally undo them.
The guards accompanying them stood firmly at the door, watching them carefully.
"You demonstrate empathy… by capturing my mate and then forcing myself and the Twins to aid you, whether we want to or not." He’s not about to let that go, sir. Getting caught by gods once is enough for a lifetime of suspicion.
The smirk widened a little. “My mate is a rare creature. One who may have assisted you had you treated him fairly.”The information on the creature was interesting, but ultimately useless. What did science care about the personal history of an anomaly?
"Enough. Apply energy to the fabric of space until it rips in a controlled fashion." Ice blue optics hardened a bit at the comm from Jetstorm. ::Do what you can, please.:: To R’youdn he almost growled. "What did you do to my mate."
The strange feeling of Skyfire’s servo shrinking and morphing startled the younglings, and they quickly let go of him as unseen forces brought him down to a level that was much friendly on their necks. As easy as it was to look up at him though, neither one of them approved. Skyfire was suppose to be huge, gigantic, strong, not… this.
A disapproving glare is thrown R’youdn’s way for the change, and looks of annoyance were given to their escorts.
»Shall do our best. We have ourselves handled.« Jetstorm growled quietly.
«You just stay careful with that one.»
"The winged creature," Jetstorm thought trying to speak to one of these men might not hurt, though he doubted he would get much out of them. "Did he speak of Starscream?"
"Like me?" He hummed, interested, "Do tell…Like me in what way?"
He opened a large red door at the end of the hallway. The office behind it was decked in even more ancient scrolls and countless tomes. Several lay open on his desk, the aging and decaying pages leaving a musty smell throughout the room. Swords and shields embellished with jewels all bore the same crest of ancestry.
"It is too much to explain in one sitting…so I will start with you~" He smiled, gesturing to the chair before his desk, taking a seat for himself in his personal chair. His wings folded elegantly against his back; his entire figure exuded an old and well-practiced elegance. "I am not a scientist, as you are. I am more of a…scholar. Collector of knowledge. But all the works I have gathered thus far have been insufficient in solving the problems of our world…"
"As I said before, you’re lovely mate was here some time ago, and managed to accomplish something that I and all my associates have not: capturing a creature we locally call ‘the Grey Ghost’. Tell me, did you manage to study that creature?"
The two men accompanying them, tall with long silken hair and heavy leather dusters, lead the two of them down the hall and down a set of narrow stairs.
"All these metal people…" One sighed, "Where do all of them come from?"
"Your friend is down this way…" The other answered Jetstorm, "I haven’t heard him make any sound for awhile. I suppose he may still be passed out…" They stopped before a heavily armored door, undoing the locks and opening it.
The interior was all cement, no light to be seen except from the sliver leaking from the open door. Starscream hung limp on the wall, strung up by rubbed-raw wrists on thick chains. His helm hung low on his chassis, not making a sound. Not even of his ventilation fans.
"The infuriating self confidence, the ability to flaunt the laws of physics at a whim, a lack of concern for the welfare of others… the list goes on."
Optics roamed over the books, catching on some with veiled interest. He tried to keep in mind what this was, a display of overwhelming power and knowledge. It was still unsettling that he had been reduced in size like this.
There was a slight tug at his lips. When Starscream wanted something, the little fact that no one had ever accomplished that goal wasn’t going to stop him. “Perhaps. Why?”
They’re medics. They’ll complain about everything if given a chance. Could you convince one of your brothers to go with you? Skydive, perhaps?
I will speak to them and work out the when. And I think you’ll be fine. They’re probably more likely to crash into one another than you are into them.
…I would still have to get his permission to live within the Ark again. And I would most likely be roped into doing transport missions, or combat. That isn’t something that agrees with me.
Skydive is always busy, and I don’t wanna bother him more than I have to. I’m an adult, I can handle it myself. I’m old enough, everyone says so. Don’t worry, okay? Dents are nothing to fix.
…. so they’re clumsy too? Are you sure they’re not related to me?
I could help! I mean, I’ll go with you and Prime won’t be mean and make you do stuff if I’m there backing you up.
He can bring his work with him and still keep an optic on you, I’m sure. Making sure you are in top condition is the most important thing.
*a chuckle* Possibly.
I… don’t know if that would be possible, Flight. I don’t think he’ll go easy on me simply because I have an Aerialbot backing me up.
"Our investment is our own." Jetfire snaps, flaring out his plating now. "And not yours to know." It’s almost tempting to question further how this being was going to give Starscream to them. It sounded easy enough. They go where ever he leads them, grab Starscream, fly out of there, and return home to Skyfire as heroes. But before they can do anything else, Skyfire’s holds them each in place with his gentle but firm warning.
«You’re not going alone.»
»If you go, we go.«
And that would be all they would say on that. They stepped with Skyfire, holding onto his servos with their own as they continued to glare up at the god in warning.
"Cross double us-"
"And you will regret it."
R’youdn clicked his tongue remorsefully at Skyfire’s resolve, “I am pained to hear you say so…Even more so by the fact that you are not even interested in my situation which requires that I need you so desperately…” He sighed, “It seems that maybe that girl’s memory files of you had been exaggerated…Perhaps you are not so clever as she remembered. Nor possessing of any scientific curiosity…” He shrugged.
"Power…" He smirked, "Is all relative, Skyfire. You know that. Knowledge is the only true force worth heeding. And you still retain poor perceptions of me. I do not kidnap. I do not steal. I do not murder. I only perform as the rules of fair play dictate. Small liberties with the reality that desperate times call for desperate measures~."
He bowed his head graciously towards the twins, “I have no doubts, children. I have no doubts…” He lead the three mechs into the portal.
Once they reached the other side, they were in for an odd adjustment. Their heights had been skewed and distorted by the transfer over to the other side. The twins were no longer quite so minuscule compared to Skyfire; the shuttle only slightly larger than everyone else in the room. The scale had been made relative. It’s odd to take in at first.
"Welcome," R’youdn chimed, snapping to two similarly-dressed men with hair just as lengthy, "Would you please take these two young gentlemen to the winged-creature in block C? He is to be released to them."
The wingless guards waved them down the opposite hallway, leaving Skyfire and R’youdn to themselves, “Are you really going to be so reticent to my offer? I promise you, you will be fascinated~,” He lead him down the other hall, lined in ancient weapons, books, scrolls and tapestries, “I don’t suppose you know anything about Phageni, do you?”
“Forgive me if I am hesitant to believe your words at face value. I had a rather rough experience with someone like you almost an orbital cycle ago, and it is not something I wish to repeat.” Especially with the kids present.
He almost stumbled out of the portal, his grip on the twin’s hands keeping him grounded. Well, there went any plans to keep the boys up and out of danger on his shoulders. Wings remained flared, his engines stuttering as they attempted to go back to the growl. He didn’t like this. Even when dealing with Unicron, he had kept his proper frame.
He didn’t like it even more when the twins were separated from him. ::Keep in contact, please.:: Blue optics followed the mechs as long as they could, before he was forced to turn his attention back to R’youdn. “If I do, it isn’t by that name.”
"You capture my mate, hold him against his will, subject him to your ‘gentleness’.." He stalked into the lab, drawing up to his full, impressive height. "And you come to me for ‘help’."
"We have dealt with those like yourself before. No matter my response, you shall do what you wish anyway, won’t you?" His expression hardened further at the last comment. "No. If you truly have business, it will be with me, not the Twins."
"We don’t." A statement which was mostly true. Jetfire and Jetstorm were guilty of pushing the boundaries of others in order to get what they wanted, but they were at least capable of backing off after a certain point. Sometimes getting to that point too a while and caused damaged to their relationships, but it’s better to reach it late than not at all.
“We,” after throwing a glance in Skyfire’s direction, Jetstorm stepped forward and took point, “will not be making any business with you.”
"Unless it involves getting Starscream back." Jetfire quietly adds on.
"Unless it involves getting Starscream back, yes." A roll of the optics. "But you are not making that kind of business, so it is time for you to be going, yeah?" Without giving the god a chance to reply, Jetstorm threw a gust of wind towards the smoke with the intention of pushing him out of the room. Somehow.
He’s not really sure how it goes going to work. He just hopes it will.
"Oh, Skyfire, I did not act badly in any way towards your mate…" He shook his helm, "After all he…Tore through my city, hunted on my grounds and traipsed his way into my nightclub without my permission. It was entirely out of principle that I had to retain him…Well…that and that interesting weapon of his has enticed me…"
"I will do" His eyes glinted dangerously, "what I must. Too long has my world been brutalized by the whim of gods…" He frowned, "People like you and I know better the way of the world…I need you, Skyfire. Work with me, and you will reap the vast benefits of what an alliance with me can mean. This I promise you."
R’youdan snorted, smiling down patronizingly at the twins, “And what is your investment with that shrieking creature? He is valuable to you?” He hummed, thinking over that, “…Very well, twins. If you will follow me, I will give Starscream to you….” His eyes flashed, “But only to the two of you.”
The gust of wind caught his wings, a few errant black feathers peeling away as he attempted to sheild himself from the brunt of the blast. Powerful…very interesting…”Now, now, children, please. You insist on attacking? I have no desire to harm anyone…” He opened a portal, “I can assure that neither of you shall have a scratch by my hand if you will come with me to collect your friend~.”
Skyfire arched an optical ridge. Another hunter, it seemed, except one that was much more powerful than Lockdown. Only the knowledge that they were indeed helpless prevented him from sweeping up his twins and storming out right then.
"I have no interest in an alliance with you. My only desire is to reclaim my mate and bring him to safety, away from those who would flaunt their power.”
He bristled, one hand landing protectively on each twin’s shoulder. ::The two of you do not have to go anywhere. Starscream is my mate, and my responsibility. I do not know if I can insure your safety if all of us go through that portal.::
Whatever the answer, Skyfire will step forwards, optics hard. “It would have been much easier if you had simply snatched me away. At least then there wouldn’t be any of this useless ceremony and illusion of choice.” Steeling himself, he went through the portal.