September 10, 2011
(Main Roadway, Iacon)
Flashover stashes the harness and cable back in his subspace after coiling them back up neatly. "I'm gonna go and arrange some leave, kid- you're safe enough here, I think, but I need to see what's going on before I go back." He pats Groove on the shoulder and disappears in the direction of the commerce district.
Groove nods, waving to Flashover as he heads off. Well, that was fascinating. And slightly terrifying, but aside from that... He looks over at Elita One and Arcee with nervous grins. "So, I imagine this is the point where somebody comes to be very serious at me?"
Elita One nods to Flashover then steps up next to Groove with an apologetic smile. "Most likely." She leads the mech to the security entrance.
A small cloud can be seen in the distance as a white form hovers along down the highway. It slows as it comes up over the hill that may have blocked the view to the the spot the group is currently gathered in. The sleek white recreational transport slows down as its Autobot insignia becomes clear to any optics watching. It stops next to Optimus prime, and promptly transforms into the Autobot Wheeljack.
Optimus Prime is standing in the main roadway after ascending the ramp from the lower levels of the Autobot base, waiting for Elita and her team to return from their mission. He nods solemnly to Wheeljack as the engineer pulls up.
Wheeljack looks about, with his hand son his knees, as if winded. "Alright...chief. We got the acid spill cleaned up. I'm really sorry about that...we should have the sensor arrays back up in the next few cycles. " Somehow his sheepish embarrassment shows through his exhaustion.
Optimus Prime looks grave. "Have you spoken with Prowl and Red alert about the exact duration of the sensor breach? We have still not discovered exactly how First Aid left- or was removed- from the city."
"Well ah...we're not exactly sure when the acid ate through the experimental armor and dripped down into the floor below, and ate through that, bringing the floor tile down on the array. I could do some calculations, but it'd still be a guess. Off hand, I don't think it happened before First Aid...ah...left us. The times don't line up." Wheeljack fidgets nervously. "I'm going to have to check with Prowl on the security systems...see what we saw while we were preoccupied in the lab."
Optimus Prime nods. "Thank you, Wheeljack. If there is anything else you can think of to assist the security team, please do so."
"What's really bothering me" Wheeljack says, rubbing his chin, "is how the armor got put where it was. There was no reason for it to have been moved there. The way we had it placed, it should have come down in the middle of repair bay 2. Not saying that'd be any better, but at least we'd still have sensors." He stops fidgeting, and looks around at the group. "I'm also really suspicious about what's in that acid. Unfortunately, the sensors take priority over my analyzing the acid that ate through the armor, but I'd bet my aft that the acid that we put on the armor plating wasn't the acid that ate through the floor."
Arcee transforms and waits until she's addressed.
Elita One reaches Optimus and Wheeljack just a few moments later, one hand lightly leading Groove by one elbow more as a courtesy than actually 'leading'. "Prime. I was actually expecting to see Prowl here. I hope we didn't pull you away from anything too important." She smiles and nods a hello to Wheeljack.
Groove looks over at Elita in surprise at the title. Wait, Prime? That's... Oh. Cycling his optics quickly, he turns back to the large red and blue mech, offering him a deep bow of respect. "It is an honor to meet you, sir." He greets quietly, falling back on his usual habits in the company of people much higher ranked than him.
"Elita, Arcee" Optimus Prime greets the two femmes, and returns Groove's bow with a respectful nod and small bow of his own. "Prowl is focused on working with Red Alert at the moment," He answers Elita's not-question first. "Groove, I am glad to see that you've arrived safely. I'm sorry it's under these circumstances."
"Hello, Optimus," Arcee says, "So what can we do?"
Elita One smiles a bit and sidesteps to nudge Arcee then addresses Wheeljack quietly. "Hey, 'Jack. Good to see you outside of your lab."
Wheeljack jerks as if brought tout of a daze. "Oh, sorry Elita. Yeah, good to see you too. And you Arcee. Just wish I knew who would want to make a mess out of headquarters. I just have this feelin' that First Aid fits in there somewhere." He finally shakes off his preoccupation enough to focus on the other mechs here beside his 'boss'. "What have you two been working on as of late?" he says to the two femmes.
Groove straightens and offers the Prime a nervous smile. "It's alright, sir." He replies, "I'm sorry we've caused you all so much trouble." He shifts uncomfortably, resisting the urge to back up a few steps. "Do you have any news about First Aid, sir?"
Elita One speaks quietly so as to not interrupt Groove's conversation with Prime. "I've been doing the Crystal City runs lately, not much else of interest, really." The 'Crystal City runs' is a regularly scheduled trip to the neutral city to barter for parts and supplies Iacon can't readily fabricate on its own.
Optimus Prime shakes his head. "I'm afraid that all we have for certain are places where he is not, Groove. Hot Spot is assisting Prowl and Red Alert. Streetwise is safe in Cubicron with his father, and Blades is, I believe, in the barracks or the refectory. You are welcome to join Blades or Hot Spot, but first, I believe we need to inform Crystal City that you have arrived safely so that they are not mounting the same search for you that we are mounting for First Aid."
Groove nods slowly, an expression of obvious guilt crossing his features. "I didn't mean to just run off... I tried to contact Hierophant Solarix, but I don't know if it went through..." He explains quietly, stumbling a bit over the words.
Arcee is nudged, and stands there looking a bit confused.
Elita One leans over to whisper to Arcee.
Optimus Prime places a hand gently on Groove's shoulder in a gesture meant to be comforting. "There is no shame in being upset or afraid for your brother, Groove. We simply need to contact Solarix as soon as possible now that you are here safely so that he and your friends in Crystal City are not worrying about you as well. Will you come with me? I believe he will want to speak with you as well."
Wheeljack looks over at Groove, then reaches out, patting him on the shoulder. "Yeah, don't sweat it, Groove. Once the chief says he's got an eye on ya, everything'll turn out okay."
Groove looks a little startled at the hand on his shoulder, but offers the Autobot leader a hesitant smile. "O-of course." Oh, he doesn't even want to think about how angry at least some of the mechs from Crystal City must be with him... He shakes the thought off. He's not a sparkling, he'll deal with the consequences of his actions. He gives Wheeljack a small smile when the mech speaks.
Elita One steps back over toward Groove. "Shall I come along as well, Prime?" She glances at Wheeljack, then adds, "Or should I help Wheeljack with taking care of that acid spill?"
Arcee seems to be trying to radio someone. "Hm, all I'm getting is a busy signal," she murmurs.
"Will you come with me to speak with Solarix, Groove?" Optimus Prime says.
Groove nods, trying to ignore the twisting feeling in his tank. "Of course, sir." He agrees quietly, offering another smile to Prime.
Optimus Prime nods at Wheeljack, Arcee, and Elita. "Thank you for your help- I don't believe we should make Solarix wait any longer than necessary to learn that Groove is safely here."