5 25 11 - 11PM - Not A Lecture
First Aid enters the courtyard between the barracks buildings from the roadway, still looking a bit subdued on top of general tiredness, carefully counting the buildings to find the right one- it's still not an entirely familiar area of the base yet, and until the last few days, he hadn't yet slept in his assigned barracks two off shifts in a row, staying in Cubicron before or after his shifts at Lifeline's instead of travelling at the end of a double shift.
Perched just outside of Warehouse 4 is Hammerstrike. He's not his usual domineering height, having knelt down by the door, his back leaning against the wall. His head was stooped forward and seemed almost as if he'd fallen asleep in that crouched position, with one arm slung over a knee. However, when First Aid approaches, his optics flicker and he lifts his head, glancing over at First Aid.
"Hi Hammerstrike," First Aid says tiredly as he pings the code to the door. "Shouldn't you be recharging? I thought you were in a different barracks?"
Hammerstrike slowly rises to his feet, nodding his head in answer to First Aid's question. "I had been hoping to have a chance to speak with you further about you -- our trip to Cubicron."
First Aid sighs and looks even more subdued. "Of course.. would you like to come in? My roommate is probably on shift, he always seems to be gone when I'm off shift."
Hammerstrike inclines his head to the invitation, responding "That would be preferable."
First Aid nods and leads the way to a smallish barracks room which is empty even by spare military standards, although the side that doesn't belong to Aid does seem to be slightly more personalized with a holoframe sitting on the cabinet at the end of the berth. The only thing to show First Aid's side belongs to him is a stack of medical text data pads neatly stacked on the desk. He politely offers Hammerstrike the desk chair, sitting on the edge of his berth himself. "I know I've already said it, Hammerstrike, but I really am sorry- I had no right to ask that of you and I just didn't think."
Hammerstrike declines the seat, and opts to merely sit on the floor. Whilst the chair probably was sturdy enough for him, knowing these warehouses are furnished for smaller mechs, he didn't feel the need to risk it. He listens to First Aid apologize again, his optics dull, seeming to stare right through First Aid. "You needn't apologize more than once to me, that is not what I am after." Hammerstrike
First Aid 's optics dim behind his visor and he ducks his head a little bit in a hangdog expression. "I'm still responsible for the decision I made, and it wasn't a very good one."
Hammerstrike places his hands in his lap, giving First Aid a very steady stare. "Maybe not. The desire to help others in need, however, is a glorious one. Sometimes, though, one must use discretion as to WHOM they rush off to help."
First Aid lifts his head to meet Hammerstrike's gaze. "I know you don't think much of her - and I'm not very happy with her at the moment- but Swivel is my /friend/. I lived in Cubicron for orns, maybe even longer- as long as I can remember, anyway- and she's never done anything to hurt me."
Hammerstrike raises his optic ridges and doesn't look convinced. "How long have you actually known her?"
"Personally or by reputation? I knew vaguely who she was before I got to know her- she's carried messages for mechs that I know from Lifeline's clinic. A few orns, otherwise. We worked on trying to find Deet's pilot together."
Hammerstrike brings up a hand, stroking at his chin thoughtfully before putting in back onto his lap. "Long enough you are convinced she is harmless? She pushed a mech off of a roof, then denied it point blank. She's a liar. Furthermore, she pulled you into her mess, probably knowing all too well that you are not equipped to defend yourself against unsavory sorts, let alone actually help her, which leads me to believe she is erringly selfish, and either very simple or very manipulative. You do not need friends like that, First Aid."
First Aid is quiet for a moment. "I really don't think she pushed that mech, Hammerstrike. I mean... I know what people said, but that doesn't mean it's what really happened. It was a mob. And he was a Decepticon, I saw the sigil- does that count for anything?" He ignores, for the moment, the comment about defending himself and unsavory sorts, largely because there's not a real answer to that.
"The only good Decepticon is a dead one," Hammerstrike concedes with conviction. "But... when we got there... she was clinging to the Decepticon. If I recall, there was a dispute over a bounty? If it were lucrative for her to harm you, are you so sure she would NOT take the opportunity? She looks like the sort of trash that would do anything for credits, like a large amount of those who operate out of Cubicron." Hammerstrike narrows his optics. "Before you get defensive of Lifeline or yourself, I understand there are some exceptions to the rule."
First Aid says slowly. "She stood up to the Decepticons for me before- we were taking a break while working on the Deet thing and got ambushed. She told me to run and then didn't run herself- and she could have transformed and been gone faster than I run." He pauses. "And you can't judge people by what they look like. Especially not in Cubicron. Don Vespa looked just as friendly as any Autobot I've met yet."
Hammerstrike studies First Aid for a while, his expression as grim as ever. However after a while, Hammerstrike sighs audibly and seems to relax some of the intensity out of his stare. "Well, I just hope you are right about her then. Perhaps I shouldn't be so quick to distrust your judgment... but I am not wholly convinced she is good for you." He leans back slightly. "I admit it still stuns me when I am reminded that you lived in Cubicron for such a time."
First Aid vents air hard. "I hope I am too." He says with a half smile. "And sometimes I wonder about being good for me too- but she reminds me to not work so hard, and pried me out of Lifeline's clinic on my free shifts sometimes. I think that might be a medic thing, really- I know I'm always on Lifeline's case for working too hard, but I do the same thing myself." He shrugs. "And Cubicron.. Cubicron's just a place. It's got good people and bad people like any other."
Hammerstrike snorts. "The bad outweigh the good. You cannot convince me otherwise about Cubicron." Hammerstrike rises to his feet. "I said what I wanted to say. You need your rest, so I won't keep you any longer from it."
First Aid says "Wait... why do you feel that way about Cubicron, anyway? I mean, how many people there do you really know, if you aren't down there much?" First Aid leans forward curiously.
Hammerstrike vents out air gruffly, pausing. "Do I need a reason?" he responds and heads for the exit.
"Yes?" First Aid says, trying to decide whether to go after the other mech or not.
THUNK! The warehouse doors slide shut behind Hammerstrike.
First Aid sighs and slides down on his berth, not bothering to turn off the lights in his room. "Some other day," he mutters, and off lines his optics.