September 15, 2011, 10:09 PM
(Commerce and Theatre District, Iacon) (Sections in parentheses take place in Intelligence Compound, Polyhex)
Streetwise had run, and then finally gotten sick, but at least hadn't humiliated himself in front of Prime and Prowl. He didn't want to do that. After finding a little bit of debris to hide it under. Still a little shakey, he started again on a walking pace, thoughts a disturbing mass. Whirling, he punches a wall, then utters a curse he shouldn't know at the pain, before shaking his fist and sighs, sitting against the building. Then he slid to his buttocks, leaning his head back against the cool metal wall, finding it a nice relief. Tilting his head, he half nervously thought about Groove, wondering where he was.
Groove glances around the commerce district, frowning worriedly. He hasn't seen Streetwise for a while, and it's starting to get to him. A quiet noise catches his attention, and he makes his way around a decrepit building to see where it came from. He spots Streetwise and smiles a little, heading toward his brother. "Streetwise!"
Glancing up in surprise, those sad blue optics brighten as Groove came into their view "Groove!" He started to his feet sluggishly and moves towards his brother with swift paces "I'm EVER glad to see you... " he notes, voice strung still as he reaches for his brother's shoulder, intending to return the earlier hug of the other day vigorously.
Groove frowns at Streetwise's tone, accepting the hug. "What's wrong?" He asks quietly, wrapping his arms around Streetwise. Even if he hasn't really known the mech for long, this doesn't feel normal, and he pulls away slightly to look him in the optics.
A sigh came from Streetwise, and he smiled a little shakily "I just had a bit of a talk with Optimus Prime and Prowl. They told me... well, it doesn't matter. I'll tell you later, when we're all together again. I just needed that." he notes, already feeling a little better "But how are YOU feeling?"
Groove doesn't look convinced but drops it, pulling the other mech back into a hug. "...still scared." He admits quietly, tightening his grip on Streetwise just a little. "I don't know what to do, Streetwise."
"I really don't either Groove." notes Streetwise, returning it just as tightly, "I wish I could help more right now. All I can do is be here for YOU, so you can be here for him. So we all can be there. I'm told Hot spot is doing better... Blades is around but I think he's avoiding us. But we gotta be strong." notes Streetwise.
"I saw Spot earlier." Groove says, curling his fingers over Streetwise's shoulder armor. "He wasn't refueling. Told him about 'Aid." He pauses for a few moments. "...should I try to find Blades?"
"Maybe later. We should try to find him though to tell him. He needs to know too." decides streetwise after a pause, relaxing his hold a little bit "... IS Aid doing better? Or well, at least not... you know." he couldn't make himself say it.
Groove hesitates for a few moments, unconsciously nuzzling Streetwise's helm a little. "...I haven't tried to talk to him again." He admits quietly, "I know he's still scared and hurting, but... I don't know. I guess I just got too scared to try again."
Streetwise closes his optics, nodding "I don't blame you. I was afraid, and angry, and... It wasn't as bad as for you. " he pauses "We can wait you know... until we have Hot Spot and Blades. Together, we're stronger, right?"
Groove nods more to himself than Streetwise, hesitantly pulling away. "I... I want to try again." He murmurs, rubbing his arm nervously. "Should I? I think I scared him, but..."
"If you want to. I'll help. I think I know what to do this time." offers Streetwise, allowing Groove to pull away, although one set of fingers trails near his brother's shoulder "But if you start freaking out again I'm going to stop you. I don't want YOU to get hurt either."
"I'm more worried about Aid." Groove says, stepping away and pressing his back against the wall. He lets himself slide down it to sit. "I want to help him somehow. Alpha left him alone," At that, a harshness leaks into his tone, but he forces it away. "But I'm not going to, not if I can."
Streetwise frowns "That crazy old mech? How did he get in there? " he nods though, sliding down beside Groove "I'm in if you're in..." he pauses to concentrate, then gestures. "He's in that direction. I think maybe if I face him, or you face him, we can make it clearer? Like a radio dish."
Groove shrugs. "He's not really here, apparently." That's the only explanation he gives, watching the direction Streetwise gestures to. "Um... It might help better if you face that way. I can't feel where he is."
The other mech nods as he moves to do that, crouching on his knees and toes now to face his brother "Shoulders again? " he asks softly, part of him dreading this. But For Groove, and First Aid he would as he lifted both hands.
Groove nods, moving a little closer to Streetwise and offering him a nervous smile. "It'll be okay." He assures the other mech, not entirely convincingly but trying nonetheless.
Streetwise nods and inhales, venting deeply to calm himself as he puts his hands on Grooves' shoulder. He shuttered his optics tightly, trying to think about First Aid again - his already empty fuel tank quailing at what they may sense this time.
Groove leans into Streetwise silently, his vents settling down to a calm, steady rhythm. He presses along the emotions he can still feel from First Aid, trying to recall how he did this the first time. Come on, come on, where is he...
(Vortex hadn't come back, which made this an excellent cycle in the strange new scale that First Aid had found himself using to compare things. L- she would- can't think about that, Soundwave can read minds, they say- help was coming. First Aid held onto that through the poking and prodding from technicians, and the tests they had conducted on his gestalt components were painful but faded to bearable soreness once they went away again. He still hurt, but it was almost like he couldn't remember what it felt like not to hurt. And now... the same sensation as before. "Alpha?" First Aid whispers, then mentally shaking his head. Not Alpha. Brothers. He tries to imagine reaching out and hugging the sense of the others' presence, pushing down the fear and pain and focusing on how much he loves and misses them.)
Streetwise's shoulders sag a little bit. Part of him felt bad that he still felt.. out of this connection to his brothers. But he merely pushed towards any sensation he could that felt like first Aid, thinking about reassurances and good things, although behind it was a burning furnace of hate and anger. "Don't give up. We're coming for you still." he whispered.
Groove makes a soft noise as First Aid reaches back- and wasn't that a blessing from Primus himself. He floods whatever this connection is with as much love and affection as he can, raising one hand to curl over Streetwise's on his shoulder. "It'll be alright, Aid." He murmurs, both out loud and over the connection, "Try to be strong for us. I'm sorry we're not there already."
(It might well be just a product of his own imagination trying to provide comfort, but First Aid doesn't care, soaking up the emotions that seem to fill the part of his processor which normally tells him if his brothers are nearby or not. /You're safe, you're not here, you're okay/ he thinks at the link with gratitude. Is this a gestalt thing? Maybe the books were right? It seemed so silly, but now, he couldn't be any gladder. He tries to send a sense of thanks through the link, and the sensation of hugging Groove- he's pretty sure it's Groove- and Streetwise tightly against him, with two working, free arms to wrap around them and no more hurting.)
Streetwise actually smiles a little bit at that, his burning rage fading under the affection. He visualizes returning the hug, adding in Hot Spot and Groove at least watching. "We're going to get you out. Don't give up on us yet." his hands started to clench a little bit though as he was reminded of the situation, a few images from the earlier talk with prime flicking through before he could hide them. No, he couldn't let them know yet. He forces it away, imagining a scene of peace. "Sleep. Rest. you need it."
Laughing quietly to himself, Groove returns the mental hug, pressing closer to Streetwise. "He's right. Rest, Aid. I don't know if you can do this yourself, but... I'll try to talk to you again soon, alright?" He whispers, sending another hug-sensation and burst of love, hesitating for only a moment before actually saying it. "We love you."
"Yes... we... we do." agrees Streetwise, with as much heart as he could get, adding into the burst. He felt much better each time they were together - before, such a lonely existence, despite all he had. Then Streetwise closed his optics again, shuttering them tightly. Then suddenly his hands loosened on Grooves' shoulders as a wave of dizziness came over him. He snapped out of it and straightened "Groove... Sorry, I need to go refuel. " he was not going to tell his brother about being sick, and he wasn't going to be sick again, but one hand hovered near his fuel tank. "I think we're all forgetting to."
(Rest would be nice, but First Aid clings to the sense of presence as long as he can, worried a little when it begins to fade, sending a last burst of love and affection and just in case remember I love you before losing the sense of it entirely. Hold on, keep holding on, he tells himself. For now, though, he'll at least try to rest.)
Groove looks worriedly at Streetwise, frowning a little at the connection with First Aid fades. But right now he has another brother to worry about, and he pushes himself to his feet, holding out a hand to help Streetwise up. "You're all trying to drive me into spark failure, aren't you?" He teases quietly, forcing a small smile. "I'm going to blow something at this rate."
Taking the hand, Streetwise chuckles a little bit. "I'm fine. Just a little fuel and I'll be in top shape again." he reassures Groove, moving the hand away from his stomach. An arm is thrown around Groove's shoulders as he starts to head towards the nearest recharge station. "This way!"