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Ratchet First Aid NPCs Bumper Streetwise

The doctors were out here today, heading towards Iahex via a roundabout way. Seems a road had collapsed, so they had to take the long way to the Autobots' secondary base on the lower level of Cybertron.

Ratchet picks his way through the terrain well enough, although he isn't exactly built for locomotor agility. He looks around at the surrounding environment and scowls in disgust.

First Aid reconsiders starting a conversation, even if the trip is a little bit boring. Lighter and less heavily armored than Ratchet and with a lower center of gravity, he's having an easier time with the rough ground, although it's still slow going. Finally, though, the silence gets to him. "Have you been this way before? How far is it?"

After about an hour of walking, they come to a rather flattened part of the hills. still hilly, but easier going. in fact, the road had reappeared in decent shape, and up ahead a crossroads between the hills could be seen as well.

Ratchet sighs as he continues to trudge. "It's farther than I thought," he finally replies to First Aid. "Let this be a lesson -- medicine is nothing without infrastructure to support it."

First Aid smiles in response, skirting around a pile of rocks in the road.

The sound of engines echoes off the hills. It’s hard to tell which direction it was coming from - but it SOUNDED like all around. Clouds of rust-filled dust started to drift up into the sky from behind them, the roaring vehicles steadily approaching.

Ratchet grunts and ducks his head as the engine noise grows. He looks around and finally steps off the path to peer up and down the track. "Heads up," he shouts to First Aid. "Let's give the speed demons the right of way, because we might be on their turf."

"Right," First Aid moves off to the side of the road, glancing a bit nervously in the direction of the noise.

The first car comes over the hill, bouncing a little as it sends up clouds of sparks. It drifted to one side, swooping right by the two medics at top speed and down the road. Then it hit the brakes, spinning around to face them. Its' headlights came on as the mech revved his engine.

Another one came over the hill, slowing down instantly behind the two Autobots.

Ratchet growls and revs his engines at the unexpected attention. He fingers the panel over his thigh that conceals his firearm. He looks around quickly to be sure of where First Aid is and starts alternately staring down the two cars.

First Aid eyes the cars a little nervously. "So... do you know these guys, Ratchet?"

The two rev their engines in unison. Then they start forwards... each serving around as they started to circle the two Autobots. A few chuckles could be heard. More engines announced the presence of others approaching too, the dust now thickening and making it hard to see.

"I'm not so sure," Ratchet says as his fans spin up to keep the dust from clogging his vents. "But I do think it's about time to knock off the road rally," he hisses as he draws his gun and fires into the air. "All right, pit-slaggers," he shouts. "Knock it off!"

"There’s a slight skid out in the dust, but the others continue and there's the sound of transformation, one mech stepping out of the dust now with a gun of his own, optics bright "Drop it right now! We don’t want no trouble..."

First Aid stays quiet and still, glancing from Ratchet to the other mech who has pulled a gun.

"Be serious! I'm not dropping anything until I know who all of you are and what you’re damned problem is," Ratchet replies. "You have some fragging fine reason for buzzing your carburetors around us tonight?"

"We do actually. Your little friend has been invited to dinner with a Don." the mech replies, leveling the gun at Ratchet. The others continued to churn up the dust storm, which made the mech a little hard to see. His hand gestured to First Aid.

First Aid doesn't quite shrink back, but it's a near thing. "Wait, what?" His own fans kick in, a combination of nervousness and the dust being kicked up. "I don't even know who you are."

Ratchet raises an optic ridge and keeps the gun pointed at the speaker facing him. "You have some sort of history from before the Autobots, kid?" he asks, somewhat conversationally. He eyes the other mechs around and watches the other weapon and its owner.

"Hey, don’t ask me. Ah'm the delivery mech." notes the bruiser, as he starts towards the two "Don’t make this harder than it has to be. No'one resists, no'one gets hurt." the others tightened their circle plentiful, stopping short, his gun aimed at Ratchet in return.

"Not that I know of," First Aid says. "But that's sort of the problem. I don't know. Look-" he raises his voice so the mech with the gun can hear him. "What does .. your boss? want with me, anyway? And if I go with you, you'll let Ratchet go on his way without hurting him?"

Ratchet revs his engine angrily. "More to the point, if he doesn't want to go with you, will you leave us alone and make tracks?" he asks. "All I need is a designation, and the Autobot army can come visit for... dinner," he hisses.

"Firstly for you little one, we'll let 'im go if ye cause no trouble. And Ah dunno why the boss wants to see you. like I said - I'm a delivery mech." The bruiser intones, glancing then to Ratchet's box frame with a chuckle "As for you, no, not really. Bring the army. If they wanna waste time in Cubicron, that's their choice." he glances to First Aid "My bruisers have their guns ready. You gonna come or not?"

First Aid vents air nervously. "Your boss just wants to see me, fine. I'll come. I don't want anyone getting hurt on my account." He glances at Ratchet. "So he gets to leave first."

"You sure about this, Aid?" Ratchet asks. "You'd better have a radio ping running with your status the whole time the... bruisers... have you," he warns, enunciating the title with a sneer.

The mech grins widely as he puts one hand on his hip, the others continuing to stir up a circular dust storm around all three of them "Hey now, I don’t damage the merch." he notes simply with a chuckle, gesturing First Aid forwards, his gun lowering.

First Aid says nervously "No, not really." He takes a step away from Ratchet. "But if you had a better plan, you'd have already said something. And I don't want you getting hurt on my account. I'll keep my radio on." And hopefully no one and nothing jams it, and these guys' boss really does just want to talk.

"It's not generally a plan in my playbook, no," Ratchet notes reluctantly, before turning to face the delivery mech with hard optics. "Deliver this: he's intact, healthy, and back at the Autobot med bay before the next solar cycle or I can promise you that you --you!-- will have some unfortunate company in Cubicron, and you'll be dragging a cannon out of your own tailpipe. Got it?" He's not putting down the firearm. Not yet.

The mech chuckles as he grins toothily at Ratchet "I don’t know when the boss will be done with him. Like I said - I just deliver him. I'll convey the message, but since this is one of the Top Dons in Cubicron I doubt even you have those connections handsome." he transforms then, into a large carrier type "Hop in, short stuff."

"After you let Ratchet go." First Aid says, firmly. "Ratchet, would you apologize to Lifeline for me? I think I'm going to miss my shift in her shop later." He's not actually scheduled to work, but maybe Lifeline will know who these mechs are. Just in case.

"I will, of course," Ratchet says. "It's been a while since I've done rounds there," the Autobot CMO notes as he withdraws his firearm.

"Ah right. Okay boys! Wrap et up!" shouts the mech, and they start to disperse, several moving back and disappearing while others slow, idling along the road for the ringleader.

First Aid nods at Ratchet. "Okay then. Um, sorry I'm going to miss my shift for you too." He moves towards the carrier mech's open bay, but doesn't step in, clearly intending to stay outside until Ratchet is safely on his way.

Ratchet finally holsters his weapon, then transforms and starts down the road slowly, lights and sirens blaring.

The mech waits patiently until First Aid had loaded up, and the others fall back, roaring off into the distance, to Cubicron

First Aid climbs into the strange mech, doing his best to conceal his apprehension. "So, does your boss have a name? Or you, for that matter. I'm First Aid."

"He's called Don Vespa. And Just call me Bumper." the mech replies as he rumbles along "And relax. We gotta few hours before we're there! he just wants tae talk to you about your part time job."

First Aid settles in for the ride, doing his best to keep his apprehension under control and off his face.

Bumper is quiet too, then states "You worried?"

"Gee, you think? "Maybe being run off the road, abducted at gun point, and /missing work/ are part of your normal day, but it's not something I make a habit of." First Aid says.

"Welcome to real life kid! Relax a little - have an adventure why not?" asks the mech, casually as he continues down the road, soon they were in the blackness of the underground. "Live a little, ya know?"

First Aid says "I like my work." He keeps his tone deliberately light, or tries to, anyway. "And I'm really not very interested in adventures."

"Nothing wrong with liking your work. And why not? Adventures make things exciting!"

"Anything that makes me miss my shifts is excitement I can do without. Besides, your boss couldn't have just commed me or something? I'm not really hard to find." First Aid says.

"He likes to make things personal. Less problems with it being overheard or misunderstood, you know?" responds the mech.

First Aid looks skeptical. "You know, that's not a very reassuring thing to say."

---

First Aid after hours, will recognize the sounds of Cubicron. They head through the city and it quiets down again until they pull into a warehouse, where First Aid was finally let out into the large, empty space. Laughter is heard nearby, as well as merrymaking and music.

First Aid steps out of Bumper's cargo area with a stretch to loosen up tension cables that have tightened up over the drive, mostly due to nerves. "So.. where's your boss?"

"What's the big rush? " chuckles Bumper, transforming as well. He slings his gun over one shoulder as he grins "And he ain’t really my boss. He just hired me. Come on this way..." he makes his way towards a nearby building. This was deeper into Cubicron as First Aid had ever ventured.

First Aid follows nervously, doing his best to look nonchalant. "I've already missed one shift of work, and now I'm going to miss a second if I don't get back soon. Could he not have just commed me like a normal mech? I'm not that hard to get hold of that violence was called for."

"As I said. He likes to talk things over in person! Radios, they can get interference, get hacked into, that kind of stuff. "explains Bumper "He dun like radios. Doesn’t trust em at all." The 'bouncer', a tough spiky blue mech glances up as the two approach "The Dons' busy right now. you'll have to wait in the vestibule!" he rumbles, folding his arms again. Bumper scowls

First Aid takes the pause as a chance to look around him. He'd known there was more to Cubicron than what he saw working for Lifeline, but still, this is... unexpected. And a little bit cliché. But it's probably best not to annoy anyone, either. "Er, I guess I can wait." He says.

"Meh. Always delays." grumbles Bumper as he leads them into the vestibule next door to wait. IT was quieter in there 'I gotta go refuel. You stay here."

There was another door further into the complex.

First Aid's best chance at getting out of this is probably to be quiet and agreeable and wait this Don Vespa mech out. But he's more than a little impatient at this point. He leans against the wall by the door - maybe he can hear what's going on on the other side?

There was talking. An argument going on and the sound of footsteps approaching the door next to First Aid. Then it swings open viciously, an upset mech stomping through "I'll be back LATER!" he shouts over his shoulder, slamming the door behind him with a WHAMMMM

First Aid jumps as the door slams open, ducking away from the mech.

The mech pauses, startled and turns towards First Aid, face angry "What're YOU doing here? " he asked. He was small, not much larger than First Aid, and mostly white in appearance with black trim, and blue optics.

The mech pauses at that, and shifts "Waiting to see my... the Don? " he asks, putting a hand on his hip "Oh yeah, I remember him saying something about you. The apprentice to the medic." he seemed to calm down fast.

"Yeah. I'm First Aid." He says. "You know anything about what he wants with me? I'm not exactly here voluntarily." His fans spin a little nervously.

The young transformer folds his arms "He just wants you to deliver a message. Just a verbal one too, luckily." he leans forwards "you can thank me for that."

First Aid doesn't quite take a step back, but is obviously not entirely comfortable with the strange mech in his space. "Exactly what am I thanking you for? And who, for that matter?"

First Aid says "And why /me/, for that matter?"

"Because he wanted to send back just your head." responds the younger mech with a sigh "It’s how they do things down here. You send 'messages', see. And because you work for that medic... you obviously are closer to her than the drunk that staggers in off the street, see?"

First Aid makes a nervous clicking sound. "Thanks for that. Sincerely. I really do like my head where it is." He pauses for a second. "You didn't tell me your name?"

"My name? Oh, Streetwise. Adopted son of the Don." he grins "I'm Don Junior you could say, heh. Got me off the streets after finding me wandering the lower caverns lost."

First Aid glances at the door, and then back to the other mech, smiling back- the mech's grin is infectious. "Nice to meet you, I think."

"Just be casual, confident okay? he's in a good mood today - don’t worry about the shouting, I'm the only one who can get away with it. Just don’t insult him and you'll be okay. Just quick in and out, like a lube job." coaches Streetwise.

First Aid looks skeptical, then determined, deliberately straightening up and squaring his shoulders rather like he expects an argument at any minute. It's not terribly successful, but he at least looks less nervous. "Right. I don't make a habit of insulting anyone, anyway."

"Smart mech. you'll go far like that." approves Streetwise. His optics drop to the red symbol on First Aids' chest "... When'd you get that? "

First Aid glances down. "Oh- last orn. I guess I'm not down here enough anymore for the gossip to have spread yet. I'm apprenticing with the Autobot CMO, Ratchet. I'm still working for Lifeline on my off shifts, though."

"Ohh. Isn’t that a bit risky? You DO know you guys have enemies down here right? " notes Streetwise, optics widening a little.

"Everyone asks me that. I've lived in Cubicron for months, I know my way around, and I never had any problems until the last two joors, honestly." First Aid shrugs. "Lifeline's always busy and she works too hard- I couldn't just quit working for her. There's people that can't go to Iacon or Crystal City for help, either. What kind of medic would I be if I didn't keep helping when I know that I can make a difference?"

"I like your attitude. I just worry it may get you into trouble." Admits Streetwise "Maybe all those people have something going if they keep bringing it up, especially for young sparks like us. Heck, Father won't even let me out that door without an escort." he points to the door First Aid came in.

First Aid says, a little dryly. "Trust me, I'm considering it." He sighs. "Maybe I can time my on-shift and off-shift with Metro's patrol schedule or something. Although I'm not sure if I'm even going to be allowed to keep working at Lifeline's, at this rate. And I'm sure Ratchet's mad- we were on our way to rounds in Iahex when Bumper and his guys caught up with us."

"Iahex, that's your second city isn’t it? " he nods "Yeah. Bumper is one of our 'dirty mechs'. Though he won’t actually admit it. So how'd you get on with Lifeline? ' he asks, sitting beside First Aid.

First Aid slides down the wall to sit on the floor, resting his hands on his knees. "Lifeline's great. She and Ratchet were the ones that found me, actually, and repaired me, and I've worked for her ever since. She knows tons, and everyone- or pretty much everyone, I guess- respects her, even if they don't like her politics."

Streetwise nods "I don’t agree a lot with what Father does. But I can't just walk out on him, can I?"

First Aid nods, slowly. "Family is important. And Lifeline would probably laugh to be considered that, but I owe her a lot." He sighs. "I worried that she'd be angry when I joined the Autobots, actually. She thinks they're wrong about a lot of things, though she doesn't have anything nice to say about the Decepticons at all. You have to do what you think is right in the end, though- not just what they think is."

"If I can ask something, what do YOU think is right about them?” asks the other youth curiously, peering to focus on First Aid. "I mean, you've met more than me."

First Aid huffs. "It's a lot of little things, more than any one thing. The main one is that the Decepticons are /wrong/. They hurt people for no reason other than they feel like it, and that's sanctioned from the top down. I won't say I like all the Autobots I've met- Hammerstrike is really quiet and I have no idea what he's thinking pretty much ever, and Eon is... Eon.- but everyone I've met, I know would help anyone who needed it just for the asking. They- we, I guess, I'm still not used to that- help the neutrals and the refugees. Ratchet will treat anyone who comes to him who needs it- like I said, he helped me, and they don't ask anything for it." He shrugs. "That's most of it."

Listening quietly, Streetwise' optics flicker "They like to do that huh? But doesn’t Lifeline do that too?" he asks quietly as he listens "Sounds like a nice bunch. A band of brothers in a way."

First Aid shakes his head. "Lifeline helps anyone who can pay. I mean, she likes to help people, but she can't and doesn't work for free. The Autobots will take pay if someone offers, but they don't ask. And yeah, it is like a family, I guess. We look after each other. Lifeline's my friend, but it's not really the same. It's not personal, you know?"

"I think I follow you." remarks Streetwise "It’s like the Mob here... kind of family, but also at times more professional. If I need to get say, Bumper to do something, I have to pay him, even though he kids around with me a lot."

First Aid shrugs. "Don't get me wrong- Lifeline cares about me. And I know she'd help her friends, even if they couldn't pay. If she could, anyway. But parts cost money, for good ones, anyway, and some things she just can't buy from the scavengers."

"Yeah, I read you there, that parts cost money and stuff. I don’t know how the Autobots stay afloat. I admit..." he leans towards First aid "I kind of like their style. And some of their drivers?" he grins

First Aid shrugs. "I don't know, either, but they make it work." He returns the smile. "Like who? I haven't met that many of them yet, outside of work. And this one time when I was trying to get Lifeline to relax and we went to a bar in Iacon, which was a disaster all on its own."

"Oh dear... " snickers Streetwise "You haven't been to a bar before?? man it’s so much fun! I sit in the corner and laugh at the drunks." he states "Although I /do/ worry when they drive themselves home"

First Aid looks mildly offended, which fades into sheepish. "I went with Lifeline. But there's so much to do, usually. And now I really don't have time for bars, or getting overcharged."

"Not at all?? No time for..." the mech pauses "... Fun?"

First Aid rolls his optics. "I like my work. I get to help people, and there's not much better than that!"

"Nothing wrong with liking work. But there's FUN stuff to do!" explains Streetwise with a smile "Stuff that makes you smile, and feel good inside in other ways! To relax!"

First Aid says "Maybe it's just a medic thing. I don't think I'm any better at it than Lifeline is. Or Ratchet." He pauses. "Although I think maybe that's what some of the yelling is, for him." He shakes his head. "So other than watching people get overcharged, what do you do for fun?"

"Maybe. I guess so. I can't imagine life without play." admits Streetwise as he looks at the door again "which yelling, Father's? Oh" he chuckles "Aside from laugh at the drunks? Well, I don’t Transform yet, so I go hot rodding with the boys. Mostly the convertibles - I fit better. Street drag racing is GREAT, especially with the Scorps."

First Aid nods. "I don't yet, either- I guess working on that counts as fun, although I wish I could figure out why my results keep ending up funny. Not having an alt mode sucks slag. We would have been already in Iahex, even with all the debris on the road if Ratchet hadn't had to wait for me. Street racing, though? That sounds pretty dangerous."

"Eh, sometimes. We do it where nobody else is around though. Nothing worse than legal racing. " explains Streetwise "You learn a lot out there though on survival I must say. Your results? " a pause "Ohh, Transforming. And yeah, I'd love to hit the road and cruise on my own. Do you have a girlfriend?" he seems YOUNG to be thinking of girls.

First Aid shakes his head. "I guess. No, no girlfriend. You?"

"... Father's introduced me to a few ,but I'm not really into the mole types." confesses Streetwise "That and they're so much older than me."

The door slams open again, a sleek black mech with pinstripes peering in. Streetwise looks up as the mech says "Da boss wants ta see youse... Both of youse!" Streetwise blinks, looking shocked.

First Aid clambers to his feet, glancing at Streetwise. "After you?"

Streetwise nods as he stands too, dusting himself off "remember what I said." he notes as they enter in.

The Dons' chamber was dark, moody. It looked like a bar really with relaxing music playing. Others were sitting around, watching the two youths head towards Don Vespa, a rather large, roundish mech with a single headlight and three wheels visible as he lounged at a large silver table.

"I'll do my best," First Aid says quietly.

Vespa peers down at both and grins "You like your new friend eh there? " he gestures, and Streetwise approaches, standing politely beside the Don now as he nods faintly "HEh. Want to keep him? " the mech guffaws, others joining in out of need to please.

First Aid nods politely at the triwheeled mech. "You must be Don Vespa."

The laughter dies down, and Vespa nods "Yes, that's me. I take it my boy briefed you. Good. I'll spare the introductions. You work for Lifeline don’t you?"

"Yes sir, I do." The Don's a crime lord at best, not someone to inspire respect out of anything but fear, but First Aid would rather err on the side of caution. "Part time for the last orn or so, and as her apprentice before that."

"Good good. Yea, so I hear. which is why I want you to take her a message: Be careful dealing with the Autobots." he leans forwards, optics brightening, a pale yellow "A lotta folk dun like them down here, see? And we'd hate either of you to take to an accident. She hasta be more picky about her clients if she still wants to stay in business, see?"

First Aid stops his intake fans from spinning up nervously, but keeps his voice level as he replies. "I can pass the message along, sir, but I can't make any promises that she'll listen." Because he knows she won't. Lifeline does what she wants, regardless of what anyone else thinks!

"You'd both better hope she does." The optics narrow dangerously. Beside the Don, Streetwise shifts uneasily foot to foot, glancing up to his father. A sharp look was exchanged and the mech looks back down "Next time my message won’t be verbal."

This mech is definitely scary, but First Aid has been putting up with Ratchet's best glares on and off for most of an orn. "I'll relay the message to her." He says mildly. "Is there anything else?"

"Good. You do that. Bumper will show you out... " the mech states simply "And remember - I like repeat business with messengers." he grins toothily. Streetwises' optics brighten. He actually bristled a little bit at his father's side.

First Aid glances from Vespa to Streetwise. "Nice to meet you, Streetwise," and shifts his gaze back to Vespa. "I'd say it to you too, sir, but I don't think it's very accurate."

The mech chuckles loudly again, slapping his knee with a clang "You got some mouth on you boy! If you ever need a job with lucrative pay, just come my way right? I treat everyone who works for me like family." He pats Streetwises' shoulder, shaking it gently in Emphasis.

First Aid doesn't jump, quite, at the loud noise. "I like my current job just fine, thank you. And I'm missing a shift right now," He notes.

"So? Relax. Have a brew on me. Bumper!" Vespa shouts, Bumper making his way in "Get each of the boys a drink of the good stuff - not that high quality slag though, it'll make them sick - and take them out for a ride." he waves a hand, turning back to his table.

First Aid glances at Bumper sideways and steps back- he's obviously been dismissed.

Streetwise steps out again, gesturing to the door as he walks with First Aid. Bumper follows behind him, tossed - somewhat recklessly - two cubes of energon from the mech at the bar as they stride out.

Outside, Streetwise mumbles "I hate it when he threatens that."

"Which part?" First Aid says quietly, pitching his voice not to carry as far as where Bumper stands. He's a little surprised that he's not more shaken up than he is, really, but apparently criminals threatening his life have been moved out of his personal "Top five scary-as-slag things that could happen" archive about two Decepticon encounters ago.

A cube is shoved into First Aids' hands as bumper moves to transform. Streetwise takes one too as he states "The 'repeat messenger' thing. Oh by the way, I'd suggest giving the message word for word. There's a meaning in the entire speech." he explains

First Aid nods. "Yeah. 'Do what we want or we'll do horrible things to you and your friends and family' loses some of its cachet if you say it straight out." First Aid sighs and takes a sip from the cube, carefully. "I recorded it, anyawy. Lifeline will want it word for word at that."

"Yeah. That's pretty much it." he nods "Good idea. Come on. But that was a threat against you directly too - remember his line about a silent message next time? Take it seriously and use the buddy system."

First Aid sighs again, unhappily. "I will." Another sip from the cube. "I knew it was going to be hard to keep working in Cubicron, but... Pit. This is a mess. Why does he even care who Lifeline treats?"

"I told you. Enemies and family ties. One of our rival families is buddies with a few of the Autobot intel agents, so it’s in our favor to inconvenience them as much as possible, and maintain a monopoly." explains Streetwise, much more maturely than before as he sips the cube too.

First Aid stares into his cube. "She's a /medic/. Treating people is what she does. It's wrong not to, when someone needs it. And you can't tell me that your father spends too much time thinking about what his customers do with the things he sells them, either."

"IF he thinks it will not be used to his advantage, then he does think about it." states Streetwise. He shifts though, as though reluctantly defending his father figure "And medics can still pick and choose - I don’t think Ratchet would treat a Decepticon, would he?"

First Aid says "I don't know. I've never asked, and it hasn't come up. From things people have said, I think he's treated prisoners before, when they needed it. But someone who is going to get back up and go right back to hurting other people? There's a fine line in that case- but we're talking about the Autobots, not the Decepticons. The argument isn't quite the same."

"I don’t get what you mean by the last line." Admits Streetwise after a long pause for thought.

First Aid says "The Autobots don't fight just to fight. They'll defend people and things, but they don't go out and hurt others just because they're stronger."

"They do huh? " asks Streetwise, a little bit of interest brightening his eyes "Why? I mean, what's their goal? And what's this to do about medics?"

First Aid says "Prime has this whole speech about freedom being the right of all sentient beings- I haven't been through basic, so I haven't heard the long version, but, that's what. They're volunteers, and they fight to let people have the breathing room to make their own choices- even people who aren't strong enough to stand up to the Decepticons themselves." He takes a deep breath. "As for medics... I can't tell you how it is for anyone else, just for me. But my programming is about healing mechs. Not harming, and not letting someone hurt when I can help them. No matter what I think about them. It's just something in my spark, something I've always known, even before I was Lifeline's apprentice."

Streetwise finishes his cube, looking thoughtful as he stared across at the inside of Bumper's trailer. He hooked a hand around his knee "... They do it because they want to? So others can choose to? They... give up all of that for others, selflessly?" he asks, softly, as though hearing words that were magic.

First Aid shrugs. "They're not perfect. And I think everyone probably has their own reasons. But ... yeah. Pretty much."

"That’s a... neat idea. I kind of like it." admits Streetwise, softly so Bumper wouldn’t hear.

First Aid eyes Streetwise. "I just met you, Streetwise, so it's not really any of my business, but... be careful. Your father doesn't seem like he lets go of people very easily or is very nice about anyone disagreeing with him. Not that it's my place to say, or anything.

Glancing up to First Aid, Streetwise blinks, surprised. Then he smiles thinly "Oh, I know it. He's straight and truthful with me. Told me all about what he does, why, and explained things to me right fast. But thanks." the last two words were said gentler. "Can I come visit you at Lifelines?"

"Sure," First Aid says. "As long as I'm there, anyway." An expression somewhere between anger and unhappiness crosses over his faceplates. "I'm not sure if I'll be able to keep working there. Especially if associating with the Autobots is putting her in danger." He taps on the sigil on his chest plate.

"Any kind of allegiance can put you in danger, or your friends. Heck, even a LACK of allegiance can do that. Look at how many Empties died." replies the other youth, using slang liberally.

"True," First Aid vents air from his intakes. "But it'd be nice if things were simple and people would just treat each other with respect." First Aid finishes the rest of the cube he holds, staring at the empty cube for a few moments. "We must be almost there by now." He pauses again. "You said earlier that you convinced your father not to just send Lifeline my head. Why?"

"... I don’t know why. I just felt that he shouldn’t have." admits Streetwise, rubbing the back of his neck {C "He wasn't too happy about it, but generally lets me get what I 'want' most of the time. " Indeed, {C Bumper pulled up, a few blocks from Lifelines'

"Thanks." Aid says, simply and sincerely. "It was nice to meet you." He climbed to his feet in the trailer as the door slid open, and jumped down to the ground. "If you can't find me here, Lifeline will know how to get hold of me. Or you can come visit me in Iacon." He smiles.

Streetwise Chuckles, standing on the edge of the trailer. "Not allowed in Iacon. Father would take my head himself." he grins, half joking. Or was he? "see you though!" he waves as he steps back inside.

First Aid waves and looks around, recognizing the neighborhood and heading for Lifeline's clinic as soon as the door to Bumper's trailer slides shut with a hiss.

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