Shark walks into the Red Guardian Inn in need of a drink. He looks rather tired, like he's spent many megacycles doing something utterly boring. He stops in front of the cooler and grabs a cup, then dispenses liberally.
+Roll: Goa rolls against his Awareness Stat and succeeds by 7! The total roll was 3.
Goa was busy fixing one of his own blends, picky 'Bot -- but seems to subtly shrink behind the bar when he notices Shark come in.
+Roll: Shark rolls against his Awareness Stat and SUCCEEDS PERFECTLY!
Shark tips the cup up and drinks the whole thing in several gulps, even leaving little trails of energon at the corners of his mouth. Then he refills it. He smiles toward where you are hiding. "I know you are here."
Goa startles, but stands taller, clearly a bit indignantly... "Uh, hi--Shark. Good to know your optics are working ... ?" He climbs over the bar to take up a stool, temple of his helmet rested against his fingers. There's some measure of conflict on his face.
Shark hmms softly at you. "Which is surprising considering how many megacycles I've been looking at security tapes," he points out, "I cannot believe what I'll do for that femme sometimes." He sighs.
Goa pauses uncomfortably before forcing a smile. "Dare I ask?" he says, immediately before launching into chugging his drink.
Shark sips on his second cup of energon then replies, "Lifeline. She's convinced there's something odd all the sudden about us." he frowns a bit, "To be honest she may be right, and I don't like that." he looks toward you, "You noticed anything odd or weird lately the past few days?"
Goa grunts. "Odd?" He takes another long draught before continuing. "You're telling me..."
+Roll: Goa rolls against his Intelligence Stat and fails by 4! The total roll was 15.
The wide mech seems unwilling to say more than that, having fixated himself on staring into space. Probably lost somewhere inside his own CPU. A couple of gashes gleam silver on his back, facing Shark.
Shark waves a hand in front of your optics. "Don't zone out on me here, this is serious." He frowns. "I'll bite you," he warns.
Goa drifts to, turning his face to the side to acknowledge such. "... sorry. Haven't recharged lately. What kind of odd?"
Shark replies, "Like something seemed out of place, didn't feel right, someone seemed off or missing all together," he states, "I've looked through a lot of security footage and had to start taking notes on things that seemed wrong."
Goa shakes his head slowly. "You're looking in the wrong place. That sounds exactly like some kind of mechanohallucinogen. A well-engineered one, I might add..." he stops, staring Shark in the eyes, "But on the other servo, do you believe in coincidences?"
Shark shakes his head, "Not a hallucination at all. When a femme that used to touch you and kiss you up then stops doing so, something is majorly way off." He hmms, "Coincidences? Yeah, sure."
Goa says, "I'd consider getting attacked twice in one cycle oddly unlucky, then, wouldn't you?" He whirrs gently, seemingly to cool off. "Shark, one of them recognized me."
Shark hmms, having noticed the gashes and figuring maybe you got hurt. "One of who?" he asks, "Don't be talking riddles."
Goa leans back, distancing himself from the bar at arm's length. "Couple of fliers. Wrecked my equipment, too. Not sure I've ever been that spooked in..." He scratches his head. "Like I was saying, one of them got all weird and flew out. That's not what bothers me." His tone carries a hint of embarrassment.
Shark cocks his head a bit, taking this in. "You ran into two 'Con fliers separately on the same day? Yeah that's unlucky," he agrees.
Goa thuds the side of his chrome-plated arm against the bar, in an uncharacteristic display of physicality. "I wasn't around before this war, Shark, and by Primus I'm too young for my memory from just a megacycle ago to start getting patchy," he says, hissing between every other word or two. "And I look different. I should be recognizing 'Cons, slimy dealers, low lifes -- not the other way around. I couldn't even place her name. She /told/ me. And a 'Con, willingly giving their calling card to an Autobot? That's pretty slagging odd." His expression has faded to a near-pouty grimace. "... And that was my good testing equipment."
Shark's optics flicker at the arm into the bar and the way you hiss like it's really irritating you to even admit what you are telling him. He hmms softly, "So you experienced the odd and strange too, which only proves that something is off. I've seen a lot of footage in the security tapes that were off as well. I've already given it to the scientists to see if they can figure out what the deal is... All I can really tell you is you aren't the only one noticing it."
Goa lifts his arm, optics brightened with surprise at the dent he made -- he immediately starts trying to bend and buff it out as he speaks. "I'm not sure what evidence you have it's not just a rough decacycle on all of us," he bends over sideways, trying to see if he can make amends from under the bar surface, "... But I guess you do. If I can help fix it, let me know."
Shark mms, "Well for one Ultra Magnus as our leader. That's off for some reason," he points out. "You being here, that's off."
"Ultra Magnus? What's wrong about that?" Goa sits up -- looks like he's attempting a poker face. "And what do you mean? I mean ... I usually spend my time off-base, but is it that bad? I don't mean to be antisocial..." He breaks composure and frowns.
Shark smiles a little. "I asked myself that too, but when I questioned others there were similar grumblings about Magnus being leader seemed somehow incorrect, but not knowing why." He pauses, tapping your chest where your emblem is. "That is what is off with you. Don't know why, just seems off."
Goa narrows a glare at Shark, letting off another whirring puff of air. "Sir, I understand that there are held ... reservations about my line of work before I joined the Autobots..." He tilts his helmet down, two bright blue eyes framed by green, "But I can't help but find that slightly uncalled for." Holding the stare for a few more clicks, he snaps his face back upward. "... You're really sold on this 'oddness' thing, aren't you? I apologize."
Shark gives you this toothy smile at your indignation at his words, holding up his hands in a placating gesture. "I got no reservations about your line of work. Just saying there is something odd going on. Some people are just off in different ways. I've even been told that I seem off to others, like being truthful was something I shouldn't be doing." he points out, "Then there's Lifeline and her suddenly acting like we shouldn't even be a couple." he nods to you, "So yes, I'm sold on it. Dunno how to prove it, just that deep down I know that the love of my life is right. And /that/, my friend, is the clincher for me. I don't /like/ it... in fact I /hate/ it... but if you ever loved a femme like I do her... you'd get it."
Goa absorbs the mech's words, saying nothing for some moments even after he finishes speaking. "You..." He hangs a moment, seemingly retrieving what memory he has of Lifeline. "I didn't realize it was that unusually bad. I sympathize, if you accept it." His glare softens and examines his work on the bar surface. "Forgive my eyes for seeing a selection bias. But if you want to prove it, may I suggest an idea?"
Shark nods. "Well for me it is bad. If something is off about it, and there's a way to prove it concretely... then yes I'd like to hear your suggestion, 'cause I'm not sure how to even pursue it outside of the scientists doing their thing."
Goa rests his elbow against the bar, carefully watching the amount of pressure it inflicts, and finishes his drink before continuing. "Your bias is that you've only observed this behavior in Autobots. I've observed it in Decepticons," he leans forward, shoulders hunched and one arm on his knee, "But I can't confirm that I wasn't the trigger of that particular behavior."
"I would suggest cornering one, preferably outside of Iacon, away from where some kind of CPU-fogging agent could be released en masse, and asking him what you just asked me."
Shark says, "Cornering who exactly?"
Goa smirks. "Apparently it's not that hard to find a Decepticon on patrol if you look."
Shark hmms, "I see. And which question are we asking exactly? If something seems odd and weird?"
Goa says, "I trust your judgment to word it more ... interrogatively."
Shark hmms, "I can try." He flashes his teeth. "I can be persuasive when I wish to be. Maybe we should find that flier that offered you her name?"
Goa laces his fingers together, clasping them in front of his chest to rest his chin, and stares down his helmet at Shark. "It's worth a shot. Is that an offer to help me salvage my lab? It's on the way back..." The antennae on his helmet fold back innocently.
Shark hmms, "We can try to salvage it. After all you did go on your own without me," he points out. "Of course you did have those questionable containers at the time."
Goa grumbles quietly, sinking his head back into the collar of his armor. "Took me forever to find that stuff... Slag knows what that jet did with it. Least she didn't look smart enough to take it home with her." Another whirr. "When did you want to get rolling?"
Shark thinks. "How about next cycle? I'm beat after sitting and watching security footage for megacycles on end. Pretty much about ready to see double and imagine pink turbo foxes." He laughs a bit.
Goa nods sharply. "I think I need something for these scratches," he stretches, "Catch you at the gates. I think I'll make a stop by the armory first this time, though." The mech stands, somewhat stilted upon his long legs, and turns to leave.
Shark nods, "Not going to find an anti-'Con spray in there," he jokes after you. Then follows you out to head toward the barracks for some well deserved rest.