October 05, 2011, 8:53 PM
(Repair Depot, Iacon)
"If you put one /pede/ off that berth, First Aid, I'm going to report you to Ratchet!" NPanaCea huffs exasperatedly at First Aid, who is sitting sideways on his berth, apparently contemplating escape. "Stay out of the supply closet, stay off the terminal, and by Primus, you are /not/ helping with my filing. /Rest and recharge./ Or Ratchet will sedate you and wrench me.Or wrench both of us and then sedate you."
"And then he might wrench me for encouraging you. Or maybe just for the Pit of it, since I think he can do that now." Groove adds cheerfully, patting First Aid on the shoulder and trying to convince his brother to stay on the berth. "C'mon, the less you push yourself now, the sooner you'll be back in top shape."
And into the an open protest of medical staff comes Swivel, landing herself comfortably in the middle of it. As she hears the tail end of NPanaCea's concerns and threats, or rather, concerns over the threats hanging over both their heads, she giggles softly, trying to wash away the lingering sorrow from bearing bad news. She idles by the door, peering in with a smile on her face, greeting loudly, "Aahoooooooooooooooy!"
First Aid looks at the door to the supply closet. "Ratchet's not here, though." He sighs and straightens out on the berth, turning to smile at Groove. "Alright- I don't want to get you in trouble with Ratchet." The commotion at thedoor makes him turn again. "Swivel! Hi. Did you get my message?"
Groove glances over his shoulder when First Aid speaks, giving Swivel a small smile before turning his attention back on First Aid. "Promise me you're not going to try and sneak off when nobody's looking and get yourself welded to the berth or something?" He teases, not quite able to fake a serious expression.
Feeling the more positive greeting to be an open invitation, Swivel struts into the room in all of her bouncy glory, bobbing her head with avian enthusiasm! "Yessum, Aidsters, I gotcher message. I guess I shoulda sended ya one back ter let ya know I got it! Ah well, I'm 'ere now. Sees, I was jus' in Iacon on a job so I figered I'd stop by an' see how yer doin'! If ya ask me, yer doin' lots better, an' that makes me spark feel warm and staticy! I kinner nice sort of static. Um... guess I ain't makin any much sense!" After this long spiel, she finally glances over to Groove, waving despite being right close by. "Oh, an' hullo thar Groove, nice ter see ya too! OH!" she suddenly squeals, bringing her hands up to her cheeks. "Yer an Autobot now! Well dun that just beat all! Mmmmm Aid's prolly real happy bout tha, arn'ya, Firsty?"
"Ratchet wouldn't really do that." First Aid tells Groove. "I think, anyway. And, yeah, Groove's an Autobot now- I'm really glad." He smiles at Swivel. "And look, Ratchet fixed my hands! Wheeljack built them."
Groove nods to Swivel, smile widening slightly at First Aid's comment. "I am indeed an Autobot now, ma'am." He confirms, chuckling. "And I wouldn't put it past him, Aid. Of course, Spot might do it himself if you worry us anymore."
There's a rumble from near the doorway, though far less of a commotion, and a large red heliformer nudges his way past the medical staff with surprising care. "You're also late for your training, youngling." Flashover points out as he approaches a bit cautiously, offering a nod to the femme he doesn't recognize before focusing on First Aid with a slight frown.
Swivel beams, adding to the general positive energies that seem to be darting about the room. She exudes as much cheer and mirth as she possibly can, drawing on all her intrinsic sources of glad feelings. "Well I'm happy fer ya both! THat's really--" she doesn't finish her sentence when her attention is caught, and she whirls around to look at the large red mech that approaches. She tilts her head to the side, glances at First Aid, then back at the mech. "Uh..." she's about to protest anyone expecting First Aid to train in his current state, but decides that is really First Aid or Groove's place to speak up, not hers. She is learning this slowly and bitterly.
First Aid studies the dark red and gold heliformer. "You're Flashover, right? Groove's guardian? You knew us, before?" He waves Swivel on over with a smile even as his focus shifts for a moment to the other mech.
Swivel zips in and places herself as close to First Aid as she can, glad there is not Hot Spot to block her this time.
Groove starts, looking up at Flashover in surprise as he checks his chronometer. "Oh, whoops." He says, smile rapidly turning sheepish as he turns back to First Aid and Swivel. "I'm really sorry, Aid, ma'am, but I gotta go." He says apologetically, cringing slightly as his internal alarm finally beeps at him. "Don't push yourself, okay?" With that, he pulls his brother into a quick hug before rushing out the door, waving haphazardly back at them.
Swivel quickly plants herself in the empty space where Groove had previously occupied, waving to Groove as he rushes out the door.
First Aid pats Swivel on the shoulder and smiles.
Flashover nods at First Aid's question, still examining the younger mech carefully. "...Yeah, I knew you before. You feeling better, kid?" He asks, voice surprisingly quiet for how large a mech it's coming from. He barely even registers Swivel moving with more than his peripheral sensors, being intently focused on the young medic.
Swivel reaches over and catches First Aid's patting hand to hold it for a moment or two before releasing it, thrilled to finally return to a tactile connection with the medic after the rift in their relationship. However, her optics are more or less trained on Flashover. "Mmm... busy cycle fer everyone, so's it seems," she murmurs in a voice that is quiet yet audible. She otherwise tries not to be too rude by interrupting too much.
"Much better - thanks." First Aid replies. "I- so.. you remember us? I'd really appreciate hearing about that, sometime. I'd like to know what you remember, about our creators, but about us, too."
Flashover glances over at Swivel when she speaks, and he offers her a sharp nod in response, but right now he's a little more focused on First Aid. "I remember all of you. Never knew much about your creators, but I'll tell you everything I do know. As for the rest of you..." He smiles down at Aid, though it's faint and a little strained. "I've got plenty of stories, if you've got the time."
Swivel perks up as Flashover mentions he has stories and stories he could tell about First Aid and the rest of them, an eagerness in his optics to hear them. However, she gives a long glance over to First Aid. "Um... should I come back anudder time?" she asks with almost timid apprehension.
First Aid shakes his head. "No, please, stay- I'm sorry I wasn't ..." He shakes his head. "I'm sorry we didn't get to talk when you came to see me before." He squeezes Swivel's hand on his shoulder. "Especially since now you can come and go again from Iacon."
Swivel smiles broadly, overly ecstatic that First Aid wants her to stay. "Well, yanno, I wun sure, iffin ya forgave me you'd wan me ter be part o' yer world, yanno, the one you an yer brothers share, yanno? I mean, since ya let me be 'fore an' I messed up, but yanno, since it was a mistake yanno I'll try jus' that much harder not ter repeat it!" Swivel says. She twists her torso around and leans to First Aid, wrapping her arms around him in an affectionate hug, not seeming bothered at all about anyone else present.
Flashover stays silent as he watches this go down, taking a quiet step to give the two more room. "I can come back later if you want." He offers, rotors clinking together as he shifts uncomfortably. "I'm going to be around anyway, not that big of a deal."
"It's- it's not your fault, Swivel. Any of it. I shouldn't have been talking to people about some of it, and well... we both should have done stuff different." First Aid glances at Flashover. "No- you don't have to- I mean, if you want to, it's okay-" He looks around. "But ... whichever you like, I guess?"
Swivel remains in the hug for just a moment longer, letting out an airy sigh of contentment before pulling back and straightening her posture, gratified with First Aid's reassurances. She waves a dismissive hand at Flashover. "No, no no... don't worry 'bout leavin'. I'd love ter 'ear bout Aid an' 'is brothers 'en they were young... 'fore they gone lost ther mem'ries."
"But you wanted to talk to me, Swivel- it's okay, I don't mind- Flashover's staying in Iacon for now, and you're not." First Aid says. "I feel bad about that."
Swivel lifts up her chin and brings up a hand to tap her chin thoughtfully... "Well I DO wanner talk ter ya private like, but I promised ya I woulna 'ave tha' chat till you contacted me first, yanno? I woulna be 'ere if I din 'ave a message ter deliver in' Iacon. An I ain' gonner 'ave ya do anythin' yan't ready fer jus' coz ya feel bad. So fer now we's can jis sit and 'ave light conversation, keep things bright an' casual, an I dun mind if other's 'er 'bout fer that."
First Aid watches Swivel's face closely, a glance over her shoulder at Flashover. "I /did/ contact you, though, Swivel. I.. if you have something to tell me that's important, I don't want to make you wait or anything. Maybe... maybe Flashover could come back in a few breems?"
Flashover narrows his optics slightly at that, looking between the two with badly-hidden concern, but finally nods. "Sure, whatever you'd like." He agrees slowly, though he doesn't look entirely happy with it. "Comm number's 03-5719-42. Whenever you want me back, or need anything at all, youn- First Aid."
Swivel brings her hands up to her cheeks, fists balled tightly into puny fists. "Oh... yeah, ya did contact me!" She says with a look of startlement. She pulls her hands away from her face. "'Ow silly am I? Sooooo fergetful! An we was jus' talkin' bout it moments ago...." she then lets out an airy sigh. She watches Flashover for a moment or two, bringing up her shoulders and giving him an apologetic look. She then turns her attention back to First Aid, lacing her fingers together and twiddling her thumbs. "Guess I jus seein' ya in such a good mood I din wanner chase it 'way with serious words."
First Aid's optics gleam a little behind his visor. "You said it would help, Swivel. I need- I need to get my processor back together so I can get back to work and everything. Everyone's all afraid to upset me, I hate being so touchy, I just want everything back the way it was, and I know it won't be but it'll be better than it is now." He glances at Flashover and smiles. "Thanks- I'll comm you, I promise- and I do want to talk- but Swivel's already come by twice, and she's probably not in Iacon for long."
Flashover, not quite trusting himself to speak evenly, simply nods again before taking another step back. Giving one last glance at Swivel, he finally turns and heads out of the repair depot, rotors rattling quietly.
Swivel smiles and straightens up. She reaches over and gives First Aid a hardy pat on the shoulder. "Hee, wll, that's jus' perfect! Ther first cycle I showed up an wanted Groove outer ther room was coz' I was gunner say sometimes ya need summon who won't tip-toe bout ya and treat ya like normal! I was also gunner say sometimes ya dun wanner share hurtful sorter things coz you dun wanna bring 'em further pain er worry, an' I know ther bond with yer..." she suddenly stops when she is sure Flashover is well out of audio range. "Ahem. I don't need to speak like that. Sorry, switching speech modes. There. Your brothers are very empathetic towards you, and I think talking about what happened would further upset them. You are already upset after what happened to y ou, so upsetting them with this grief will just continue an ongoing cycle of misery, concern, and despair. Sort of like two mirrors facing each other, they keep relfecting each other until there is no end. However, I felt Hot Spot might get offended if I said that there were things better left said to someone not as soo closely attached to your spark."
First Aid turns to face Swivel as she talks, tucking his arms around himself as she goes on, nodding occasionally. "I.. I don't think you would have offended Hot Spot. I don't think he would mind if I wanted to talk to someone else, as long as it was making me feel better."
Swivel tilts her head to the side. "Well, I didn't know that at the time, and he was really giving me a feeling of hostility. It made me feel very uncomfortable and unwanted."
First Aid looks down. "I'm sorry, Swivel. I'm sure he didn't mean to- he was really worried about me, that's all. And well- he's my brother." He shrugs. That's just how brothers /are/.
Swivel smiles. "That's not a problem now. I think everyone was emotional. I know I lost control a little bit there. I am sorry if it made you feel bad to see me in such a state, but I will not apologize for having those feelings. No one should ever apologise for their feelings," she says, placing a hand down onto the berth and sitting down on the edge. She reaches her arm over to rub a hand up along First Aid's arm, and rest on his shoulder. "But... being through what I've been through, burying it does not help. You need to talk about it to someone, or write it down. I don't really know why it helps, but it just does."
First Aid tenses when Swivel lays her hand on his arm, although he relaxes somewhat as the touch moves away from his hand, and he tucks his hands tighter against the plating of his sides. "I know- that's what all the databases say, Swivel. I looked it up." He sighs and looks down. "You said - you said this happened to you?"
Swivel nods her head as she grips his shoulder tighter. "Yes. More than once. Many times in fact..." she explains in an eerily calm voice. "You've repaired me before and seen some odd injuries, those were just light bumps and scratches compared to things I've endured from Psykeout." She continues to speak in a calm voice, not betraying too much emotion, although there is some pain hiding beneath her tones.
"You said before, about Psykeout- that one time at Lifeline's, and the time I came down to Cubicron with Hammerstrike." First Aid's voice is very soft. "But- how do you- why won't he leave you alone?" His other question is unvoiced - what if Vortex comes after him again?
Swivel frowns visibly this time, letting some of her calm wear off. She retracts her hand so that she may fold her arms tightly against herself as she glances off to the side for a moment. "Well... I... we... we were... close, you see," Swivel begins hesitantly. "But he... he is very unstable. A part of me wants to reconnect with someone I, uh, felt for, but another part feels there isn't any redemption for him. I put up with a lot, patiently hoping that... that by suffering and choosing to endure he'd... I don't know... somehow change. if I just kept offering my trust and friendship, he would realize that not everyone is an enemy, not everyone is... so horribly twisted like him..." She smiles and looks back at First Aid, adding in a hollow chuckle. "Most of all, I wanted to show him there's something special in me, something that would not give in... but in submitting under the guise of altruism, really, I was giving in... I jsut wasn't giving out."
First Aid blinks a couple times and nods uncertainly. "But... but you /let/ him? do that?"
Swivel shakes her head frowning. "At first. I kept making excuses for his behaviour, thinking he wouldn't do it again. It's hard to explain. But a part of me denied anything was wrong, it was just an irregularity, it was..." she shakes her head and her shoulders sag. "It's hard to talk about, because people respond just like that. Why would I let anyone do that? I eventually moved away from him, and run at the sight of him. I'm afraid of the power he has over me more than the actual beatings." Sherubs her uppers arms as they remain crossed. "You were in a different situation. You were being interrogated, it was business... but I get the feeling whoever did this enjoyed their work. And I bet they did not just hurt you physically..."
First Aid looks down, nodding again. "I... yeah. Vortex." His fans spin up, near silently. "He- he kept saying that it was just because I wouldn't tell him what he wanted to know. But- it- even when-" He shakes his head, he can't figure out what to say. "I'm sorry, Swivel. I just don't understand. Any of it. Psykeout, Vortex, you. How they can do it- why they l-like it... and I don't understand how you aren't scared of it."
Swivel clicks her tongue and reaches over to First Aid Again, turning so she can place both hands on his shoulders. "First Aid.... it's hard to understand. I didn't understand the first time. Or the second, or third... I'm not sure when I began to understand. But... if I explain it to you, you still won't understand. Sadly, it's something you have to figure out on your own, why people can be so cruel." She pauses for a moment, her thumbs rubbing little circles on the fronts of his shoulders (Transformers equivalent of the clavicle). "But people are cruel. But as terrible as people are, there will always be people with the spark to endure it and move on. And... if I learned being too afraid of it... well it takes over your life. You can't see what's before you because you are too busy looking over your shoulder. I don't like living like that, and besides, I don't want to let him have so much power over me... even if he DOES have that power over me, but I... I work each cycle to be less afraid."
First Aid nods again, still not looking at Swivel. "I... I know the being scared part will go away. I can deal with that. I know it gets better, I just need to work and focus on something else for a while. I have too much time to think right now. I just... I don't understand /why/. I mean, I know what they wanted, but /why/ someone would do that."
Swivel exvents heavily. "Mmmmm.... well, I guess some people don't know how to feel good about themselves, and it is very painful. So instead they hurt others, trying to put that pain outside of themselves and examine it from a distance. Then... maybe they just soon begin to think the absence of their own pain is the same as enjoying themselves. I don't know. That was the best I could come up with. Someone who enjoys hurting others, though, probably hates themselves. And... self loathing is something I do not think you could understand easily either." She leans closer, sliding her hands around the back of his neck and hugging First Aid again, resting her chin on his shoulder. She doesn't mind if he won't look at her, but she seems to feel a need to compensate by drawing closer. She speaks more softly since she is so close to his audial receptors. "I want to tell you I am proud of you, though. You are smarter than me. When Psykeout told me he didn't really want to hurt me, but that I made him have to hurt me for doing something he disagreed with... I believed him. But you... you saw right through Vortex and knew he was doing it because he wanted to, not just because you weren't telling them everything. You knew it was HIS choice to hurt you that much when there may have been other ways to get you to talk. I'm... I'm glad you figured that out so quick."
First Aid doesn't shove Swivel away, but he remains tense after she hugs him. After a minute, he tentatively reaches up with his right hand and very lightly puts his hand on Swivel's arm, neither shoving her away or returning the embrace. "Thanks, Swivel." He says. "I'll think about what you've said, okay?" His vent cycles are very carefully even, as if he's trying hard not to react.
Swivel can feel the tension and draws back, staring at First Aid intently, trying to see if he's upset at her regardless of what his words were. She is quiet for a moment as she studies him. "I'm sorry... did i overstepd my boundaries?"
First Aid shakes his head. "No- it's not you. I just- I wasn't expecting you to hug me. Sorry," First Aid says. He very deliberately reaches out and pats Swivel's arm gently, a familiar gesture.
Swivel smiles and giggles a little. "Oh, First Aid! I been wanting to hug you since I first saw you were back, safe and sound.... well not so much safe or sound, but alive! But no one would let me near you," Swivel says, still a bit of laughter in her voice. The femme does switch gears dizzyingly fast.
First Aid smiles back, although it's a little uncertain. "I'm glad to be back, Swivel."
Swivel reaches over and pats First Aid on the head. "Mmm, well I think we've discussed enough for now, but anytime you want to talk more, explore your thoughts and feelings more with someone who can at least hope to understand, and maybe add some insight, I am always there for you. Or if you just want to hang out with me like good old times, I am readily available for that too! Once you are up and moving about we can find some fun adventures just here aorund Iacon, I am sure!"
"Thanks, Swivel- that'd be fun, once I get out of here." First Aid smiles, and it's visibly more genuine this time. "It shouldn't be too much longer. Ratchet said I could come back on the schedule in two orns last cycle, so hopefully I'll be out of here in the next few cycles. Maybe my brothers would like to join us, too, if they're not too busy."
Swivel laughs. "Hey hey hey, I have no objections to them coming with! The more the merrier! But they might not be so inclined. Methinks Hot Spot is a new Hammerstrike in the making the way he gave me that heavy disapproving look! Brrrrr! Ah, but I'm sure I can bring him around with my dashing charms and cute lil' femme wiles!"
"Hammerstrike's really nice, Swivel- I know he doesn't like you, but he is." First Aid says. "And there's no reason why Hot Spot shouldn't want to emulate him, he's a good guy."
Swivel laughs merrily and stands up. However, she then turns and leans over, kissing First Aid atop his helmet, and then patting him on the head again. "I'm sure Hammerstrike has a winning personality under all that gruff. Never said he wasn't good, just said he disapproves." She brings her hand up to tap her chin. "If he's the good guy, and he disapproves of me... does that make me a bad femme?" She then shrugs and laughs, to make it clear she's just joking and doesn't honestly believe herself to be so. "I'll see you around! Oooh and save any juicy, oily, energon-dripping savory stories that Flash-something mech tells you about you and your brothers!"
First Aid pats Swivel's hand again. "You don't want to stay and talk to Flashover?"
Swivel shakes her head. "Love to, but he ALSO gave me a dirty look, and I know when I'm not wanted. Hey, and i'm not making up these dirty looks either, I see them and I know people think I'm trouble, or trash, or rude, or whatever. But you see right through that, and that's what matters. ANYWAY, I do need to head back to Cubicron. Jobs are scarce, and I won't find one hanging around Iacon... and I really need the creds. I've been, ugh, on the cheap energon and haven't had an oil change in quite a while."
First Aid eyes NPanaCea, who is working on something on the far side of the bay. "I'd offer to help you with the oil change, but I really do think that she'd tell Ratchet. Sorry, Swivel.Shark said there's someone running LIfeline's clinic though, In Cubicron?"
Swivel raises her optic ridges in surprise. "Really? Did smeone take over before or AFTER the clinic got thuroughly trashed?"
"The clinic got trashed? What happened? When? Oh no! That was before I was gone." First Aid replies.
Swivel rolls her shoulders and glances up for a moment as if trying to remember something. "Nope. Got trashed real recent. Something about a racer running in there and messing the place up real bad. I know it happened after I returned to Cubicron." She looks down at First Aid. "I didn't hear about anyone actually being hurt, though." Swivel frowns. "Some link it to the Scorponoks... but I've been in with them and I don't believe they would do such a thing. I think it may be a rival gang's doing personally."
"That's good, at least." First Aid frowns. "But Vespa swore he wouldn't mess with Lifeline or the clinic. I hope he's not breaking the deal just because Streetwise is staying here in Iacon."
Swivel frowns. "Streetwise, too? Man am I out of the loop. I hope it isn't that.... but... I really haven't been in Cubicron long enough to have heard it straight from any really reliable sources. I just know I saw the mess that was left. Anyway... like I said, I ned to get going so that I can work!" Swivel says, then thinks to herself, also so I can continue to try and track down Vortex.
"Okay. It was good to see you- thanks for visiting." First Aid smiles.
Swivel smiles so big that her optics become squinty. "My pleasure, Aid, my pleasure! Look forward to our next meeting!" With that she gives him one last pat on the shoulder and heads out of the recovery unit.
First Aid watches Swivel walk out before sending a ping to Flashover's comm, asking if he's available to chat.
It's only a few moments later Flashover returns the ping, confirming that he's available and will be right there. Sure enough, within a breem or two the large mech makes his way into the repair bay, carefully making his way around all the delicate equipment to First Aid's berth. "Hey, youn- First Aid." He greets, a small smile on his faceplates.
"Hi Flashover- thanks for letting me have a chance to talk to Swivel." First Aid smiles. The short break has been enough to let him get himself back together, and he's genuinely glad to see the other mech. "And for being willing to talk to me. I- there are so many things I want to know about."
Flashover glances around the area, moving over to grab one of the chairs scattered around. Squatting down to fiddle with the size controls on the side, he chuckles. "I'm always willing to talk to you, First Aid. As for everything you want to know... I'll try my best to help with that. Didn't get all the information myself." He admits, before frowning as the chair refuses to unfold into a larger size. "Slagging..." He mutters, before hitting it sharply on the side, jumping slightly when it finally give in. "There we go."
First Aid smiles slightly as Flashover does battle with the furniture. "It's okay, you still know more than we do- and well- I want answers, we all do, but I'd also just like to know more about well, everything- what it was like, where we grew up. Was Groove always so um... calm? Embarassing stories. All that kind of stuff. When Perceptor decrypted my memories, I got a few things, but it's distant- it's not like it happened to me- and most of what he recovered was code."
Flashover drops into his hard-won seat, arranging himself so his rotors aren't cramped. "Code, I can't help with. Never was good at that stuff. But, I can help with the growing up part." He grins easily, leaning forward and resting his elbows on his thighs. "Groove's always been pretty calm- thought something had gone wrong up here for a while." He taps the side of his helm to indicated 'up here'. "Mech just doesn't think like most of us, though. I still don't really follow how he DOES think, but guess I don't need to. So long as I could get him down from wherever the slag he climbed up this time. I could've sworn we only had one flier to deal with, but sometimes I wondered."
"Climbed?" First Aid asks, incredulous. He manages to look wide-opticked with surprise despite the visor covering the top third of his face. "I don't think /any/ of us remembered anything like that- well, unles Blades does, if he ever lets us decrypt his memory partition." First Aid leans closer to Flashover. "What about Streetwise, what was he like?"
"Climbed. Everything he could get his hands on, even smooth walls." Flashover confirms, grinning at the reaction. Primus, he hadn't realized how much he'd missed talking to any of them like this. "Streetwise didn't climb very much. He was more of a racer. Also had a habit of getting into EVERYTHING. Datapads, storage bins, personal quarters, air ducts, though that was only the once, rooms with no windows or doors..." He pauses, rotors clattering quietly in amusement. "Well, okay, that last one's an exaggeration. And I really didn't have to get him out of weird places that often, that was Groove's specialty."
"What about the others?" First Aid says, still leaning forward. "And well, me?"
Flashover chuckles softly, engines rumbling in tune with the sound. "Hot Spot was pretty well-behaved, though getting him to recharge was always a fight. Pretty much had to let him run down to empty before he'd go willingly. There WAS the roof incident, which was a whole bunch of fun." His grin widens at the memory. "Blades was pretty prickly even back then, but not quite to this extent. Never wanted to admit how attached he was to you guys. Not that he was given much of a choice in the matter." He settles back in the chair, grin dropping to a more honest smile. "You were the 'good' one. Didn't have to haul you out of any weird situations, even if you liked to practice your repair skills on me whether or not I was really hurt."
"The roof incident? I think - I think Groove remembered that- Hot Spot got onto a roof and it collapsed? Or something like that?" First Aid outright grins. "How did he get talked into that, anyway? Did you ever think we'd end up here? With the Autobots, I mean? Well, Blades isn't, so I guess it doesn't really count, but I keep hoping he will."
Flashover lets out another one of those rumbling laughs, this one quite a bit louder. "Turns out old roofs can't quite hold that much mass. I tried to tell them that just because it held Groove didn't mean it could hold Spot, but nobody wanted to listen to the boring old mech tell them that they couldn't do something fun." There's no real malice in his tone, only open amusement and a hint of teasing. "I honestly didn't know where you'd end up." He admits, smile slipping a little. "The engineers- your creators- always had all this talk of choice. They liked the Autobots, but they wanted you to pick. They'd be proud, I think."
"They would? Really? That's good, I guess- they cared, then? Really?" First Aid asks. "All I know about them is their names."
"Yeah, they cared." Flashover says softly, leaning forward again. "I wish I could tell you much about them, but I didn't know any of them that well myself. Coruscate dealt with them more than I did." He flinches a bit belatedly as the name slips out, but forces down the twinge of sadness to elaborate futher. "They built you, but they didn't really have the skills to raise five newsparks. They got a hold of Coruscate and offered him the job of being your teacher and caregiver; I kinda got dragged along for the ride. Not that I minded."
"You knew Coruscate- or, I guess I knew that. I remember him, a little - his voice, and .. well, the way he died. What was he like?" First Aid says. "If you don't mind talking about him, that is?"
Flashover drops his stare to the floor for a few moments, letting out a slow, heavy huff of air out his vents. "You could say I knew him." He answers finally, looking back up at First Aid and forcing a small smile. "Yeah, I don't mind. He was a good mech, and the best slagging teacher Cybertron's ever seen. Loved you five like you were his own." He pauses, venting deeply to help keep control of himself. "Our own, I guess. He'd always been friendly to his other students, never played favorites, but you guys... You were special. He didn't play favorites with you five either, though. Always made sure to treat all of you the same."
First Aid reaches out and puts his hand on Flashover's, leaning off the edge of the berth. "He was special to you too, wasn't he? I'm sorry- I didn't mean to bring up bad memories. It must be awful."
Flashover shakes his head slightly, moving his hand so he could, carefully and gently, grasp First Aid's, the care almost totally unconscious after so long. "It's alright, First Aid. You didn't know, and you didn't do it to try and hurt me. Slag, he'd probably get all huffy with me if he saw me right now, sulking around like a newspark who just got a favorite toy taken away." He says with a humorless chuckle, offering the young mech a more genuine smile. "He'd be proud of you. All of you. He always did like the Autobots, even if he wasn't much of a fighter himself."
"What was he to you, though?" First Aid leans back against the head of the berth, taking Flashover's hand with him and patting it with his other hand.
Flashover falters for an astrosecond at the question, smile dropping off his face momentarily before he laughs quietly. "Primus, you always did have a knack for asking questions I have no idea how to answer." He mutters, free hand coming up to rub at the side of his helm as he thought. "I guess the most honest thing to say would be 'everything'. For a long time, he was about the only person I gave a frag about. Would've followed him anywhere. Heh. Guess I did."
"I'm sorry- I didn't mean to upset you- I just... I'd like to hear about him- if you'd like to tell me." First Aid pats Flashover's hand again. "But only if you want to." It'd be nice to know more about one of the mechs that raised them than the memory fo his death.
"...Yeah, I'll tell you more. Just... Give me a little while." Flashover agrees, rotors clinking together as he shifts. "I never... I was working, when you all were being moved. Not a bad fire, but big enough my team was needed. I... We weren't bondmates, never took it that far, but I think I knew. Didn't feel the same without him. I never got to say goodbye." He looks down at the floor again, forcing himself to calm down, turning his attention back to First Aid with a smile. "Sorry. Didn't mean to drop that on you, and I shouldn't have. You must be getting tired by now, huh?"
First Aid frowns. "I'm sorry- that's terrible." He squeezes Flashover's hand gently. "He kept us alive- all of us, we would have died if it wasn't for what he did- but I'm sorry, anyway." He sighs and leans his head back against the head of the berth. "A little- I recharge /all/ the time, right now though- and I was really enjoying talking to you, and Groove's still at training and I wanted to hear how it went." And I don't want to recharge alone, not that he can admit that, even if it's to someone who, it sounds like, knew them when they were newsparked and probably afraid of the dark and all sorts of other sparkling fears.
Flashover tilts his helm slightly, looking at First Aid curiously for a few moments. A smile starts tugging at his lips, and he shifts around in the chair to get more comfortable. "How about I wait here with you?" He suggests, managing to keep the amusement out of his tone. "I'm curious to know what they're doing with my youngling anyways." Whoops. He hadn't made a slip like that in vorns. "Er, Groove."
"Only if you don't mind- it probably won't be that much longer, right?" First Aid says, letting go of Flashover's hand long enough to scoot down on the berth so he can lay down again- it'll be nice to not get tired so easily again, and even if Ratchet could let him, he's not sure he could make it through a full shift in the medbay.
"Of course I don't mind." Flashover says with another rumbling chuckle, letting First Aid get comfortable before offering his hand again. "I don't have anything else to do. Even if I did, well, frag that. I haven't seen you in quite some time."
First Aid accepts the hand with a sigh. "Thanks. For staying- and for being here, too." He doesn't really want to recharge, but his systems are powering down already and maybe he'll just offlien his optics for a few breems until Groove gets there...