Soundwave was hunched over a console. There were several powerful force fields up - the herma type that would allow not even nanos in and out. The samples of metal and paint and innards had been reduced down and hit with EMP to kill anything so they could be examined safely, but he was obviously taking no chances as he waited for the massive computers to finish their scans of the tests and display the results. Finally he sits back in silence.
Robustus walks into the medical bay after a full solar cycle of Nitrogear working with Starscream to run the samples he gathered through several tests. He is scanning over the results. "Oh, hello there sir. Didn't expect to see you in the medical bay." he states to the mech.
In one of the medical booths in the bay, Shred is sitting at a terminal herself, behind a hermetically-focused force field, her own systems having been infected by the Nanites. There's not a lot the femme can do as her system is ravaged, but she can at least provide continuous updates on her own systems, and what they are doing to her.
"You should be in isolation." intones the other mech calmly as he presses a few buttons, turning to face Robustus, still sitting "I thought to offer my own expertise in this case - it can be devastating if we do not control it. The Dead End has been cut off from the rest of Polyhex until further notice. No one is going in or out. "his optical band dims as he looks towards Shred, and then back to Robustus "I have a few theories on what is occurring. But you have the results."
Robustus looks over to Shred as he nods to Soundwave, "I have made sure to follow all the medical protocols to minimize my personal exposure to what is causing the issue sir. But I do understand your closing down the Dead End." he states. "I have a theory as well and yes these are the results that Nitrogear and Starscream discovered."
Shred is in Isolation, which is why she is in the force field-sealed medical booth. Letting out a mechanical sigh, she shakes her head for a moment, before freezing, a flash of pain crossing her features.. "Slag. It. All.. "
"You should still be in isolation. " notes Soundwave in his even tones. He glances to Shred, optics brightening "If you desire, we can sedate you until repairs can be affected, to ensure maximum comfort." he offers to her while turning back to Robustus "I will see the results, and then hear the theory when Starscream has joined us."
Robustus inclines his head, "Yes sir." he notes and offers the mech the results to look over and compare with his own. "Try switching off your pain censors Shred, it will help."
Shred doesn't physically move at all, though she does vocalize.. "I tried already to deactivate my pain receptors. It's one of the first systems that went offline for me.. Just like it would seem my motor servo control has been shut down by these slagging things."
"... Unusual. It should not have done that. Thus far all examples of this problem have been a replication of the original victims’ injuries." notes Soundwave, a tone of concern audible "It could be mutating. WE must investigate farther. " he takes the results, looking them over.
Shred contracted the nanites in Dead End, unfortunately the empty she got them from was rather the worse for wear.
The distinctive 'thok thok' sound of a Seeker's footsteps herald Starscream's arrival. "Tell us you've solved it all with your flouting rules and slinking off to that slag pit Cubicron, Robustus. I'm /dying/ to hear what you've brought back." The Seeker steps into the room, crossing his arms and looking at the medic disdainfully.
Robustus inclines his head, "The originator of this was an Autobot that fought against Megatron." he gives Shred a sympathetic smile, "Hence everyone that gets the issue has the exact same damage and cannot be fixed permanently." a glance toward Starscream, "I went there in hopes that the neutral medic had any ideas about what was causing it. If I had not, I would not have witnessed for myself that she also had the same injuries that Shred is showing as are other Decepticons in our ranks."
Soundwave reads over the results "Interesting." he states, ignoring Soundwave as he already did until he handed the data pad to the Seeker Scientist for his thoughts on it "It indeed, 'unrepairs' until that point. This indicates a malfunctioning set of self replicating repair nanites."
Shred remains still, though her optics show outright fear. The fact she seems to be suffering motor servo malfunctions is a severe worry to her.. however, Robustus may also be able to figure out at least part of the cause. The simple fact that her internal system layout is custom-designed.
Starscream reaches to snatch the data pad out of Soundwave's hand, but then thinks better of it takes it normally. Looking over the data, he makes a few hasty calculations. "When was this moron of an Autobot damaged by Megatron? And when were the first symptoms noticed in others? Self-replicating repair nanites have a replication rate of about one solar cycle in the average Decepticon." He's more thinking out loud than actually sharing information with the others.
Robustus nods to Soundwave, "That is my theory, that the repair nanites themselves are causing the issue. Instead of self-repairing, it is like they are self-deconstructing." he moves over to get a vial of sedative prepared for Shred. "I believe it was a good number of solar cycles ago sir, perhaps seven or more. The signs in our own troops didn't show until four days ago. So its spreading slowly so far."
Starscream reaches to snatch the data pad out of Soundwave's hand, but then thinks better of it and takes it normally. Looking over the data, he makes a few hasty calculations. "When was this moron of an Autobot damaged by Megatron? And when were the first symptoms noticed in others? Self-replicating repair nanites have a replication rate of about one solar cycle in the average Decepticon..." He's more thinking out loud than actually sharing information with the others.
Shred starts to shiver violently, her optics sparking.
"As for cutting off the Dead End, it is heavily infested somehow. I am uncertain how it happened, but the key carriers will be... removed." states Soundwave coldly as he taps the screen, bringing up a tiny spiderlike critter "This is a Nano robot. The standard repair one is capable of replicating itself and is keyed to repair things based on small signals it receives that tells it what it is supposed to do with what..." he cuts off, looking to Shred then "Sedate her, Robustus. There is a delivery feed there." he points to the blowgun type device.
Robustus has the needle prepared and nods to Soundwave, "On it sir." he states, moving over to the delivery feed. "This should help keep the pain in check Shred." he tells her, setting the needle into the feed.
Shred continues to shudder as the sedative is administered, her higher functions deactivating and her body going still. however, within her body there is a strange, almost grinding sound, like parts are being forcibly moved.
Starscream looks over at Shred with an expression like he'd smelled something rotten. "Oh, for Pit's sake." He slaps the data pad down on the console next to Soundwave and takes a few steps toward Robustus and Shred. "Pull her transformation cog before it chews itself into shavings."
Shred is behind a hermetically sealed force field, remember? The force field refuses to let anyone in actually. Cause that's what they're designed to do. Decepticons aren’t known for being as obedient as Shred when it comes to isolation and quarantine.
Soundwave watches this all quietly, and then states "Starscream. What do you know about the programming of Nano robots?"
Robustus frowns a bit as Shred seems to be shutting down, but considering the 'injuries' it is not unexpected. A frown to Starscream, "I'd expose us all if I went in there."
Soundwave watches this all quietly, and then states "Starscream. What do you know about the programming of Nano robots?"
Starscream huffs air out of his vents at Soundwave's question. "I know that it hasn't been done since before the war started -- hasn't been necessary. Theoretically it's possible, perhaps even simple... except for one thing." He paces across the room in clear agitation, keeping his optics from straying toward Shred's distress. Turning back to Soundwave, he snaps at the tape master as if his words were almost stupidly obvious. "A nanite would have to be programmed directly."
Robustus looks over to Starscream at his comment, "That would require the ability to shrink down to nanite size and travel to the system that creates them."
Soundwave's optics dim as he considers this, falling silent.
Starscream glares at Robustus and says with dripping sarcasm, "Oh, REALLY."
Robustus's silver optics narrow slightly, he literally bites back a retort.
"Negative. The reprogramming would be simple to do; Merely reprogram one to seek out the others and destroy or reprogram them. Eventually the old ones will be overwhelmed and the entities repaired. However, the solution to the size is a little more difficult to attain." difficult. Not impossible.
Starscream just turns his glare at Soundwave. He's smart enough to not openly provoke the tape master, though, so his words don't match his expression, their tone kept carefully neutral. "I would imagine so. Do you have any ideas on how to deal with it?"
Robustus inclines his head to Soundwave, "Indeed, would take a little ingenuity to get someone that small." he agrees. "Meanwhile though, we need to figure out the programming to give the nanites to fix the situation."
"The technology already exists." notes Soundwave "We must merely adjust the machinery so that the affect is hyperbolic." he explains, and taps a button. Another machine appears, this one some may recognize as the 'shrink chip' that Soundwave and others use "I suggest two research groups: one to build the new program, and another to build the hyperbolic shrink ray."
Starscream would roll his optics if he could. Esoteric crap like 'shrink rays' are for other, lesser scientists to hash out. "I'll get started with the new programming protocols for the nanites. I suspect their base code is going to be archaic to the point of illegibility, but I should have it sussed out quickly enough..." He looks at Robustus with an almost challenging glare. "So long as no one gets in my way."
Robustus considers his options, "I could help with the ray in what capacity I can." The medic isn't going to bite on that jab from Starscream, nope!
"Very well Robustus." states Soundwave "I would recommend another assistant Starscream, to ensure that all goes smoothly." he states.
Suddenly, a Seeker flies through and transforms just in time to skid to a halt, spinning about to reveal Ironburn, "Don't panic! I'm okay!"
Starscream glances sidelong at Soundwave. "Fine..." The rest of his reply is thankfully cut off by Ironburn's arrival. He narrows his optics at the newly arrived Seeker -- this one's nearly as annoying as Skywarp. And probably just as useless.
Robustus inclines his head to the new arrival, "I think you just found your volunteer sir, unless you wish to pull Nitrogear off his mission to have him help you." this said to Starscream.
"Very well then. Ironburn you will assist Starscream with the new Nano bot program." states Soundwave, perhaps intentionally 'misunderstanding' both Seekers as he stands with finality.
Ironburn tilts her head, "Who what? Sorry, just noticed the outbreak outside. I've been busy trying to find new ways to make Autobots explode. You know me and my work!"
Starscream huffs faintly to himself at Soundwave's decision, just KNOWING that Ironburn has been assigned to help him is like a sticker-burr under a horse's saddle. "Well, then ... Ironburn. Stop wasting time and make yourself useful. I have a repair nanite's programming protocols to re-write." He stalks across to the nearest unmanned computer console.
Robustus looks to Soundwave, "Sir, how may I assist you with the ray process?" he asks.
Ironburn seems all too enthused, "Sounds like all sorts of fun! And if all else fails, we can purge with fire." She nods sagely before following Starscream to the console, and peeks from behind Starscream at it, until further instructed.
"We must begin experimentation to attempt to hyperbolically increase the decreasing of the subject when the shrink ray strikes them." explains Soundwave "I would suggest we begin by increasing the power two hundred percent."
Great. Just great. He's saddled with Skywarp on a sugar rush. Starscream ignores the chirpy Seeker for a few moments while getting the computer to find the historical entries about nanite programming. "This is all going to be conjecture until I get a sample of an actual nanite's programming code." Then an idea occurs to him and he turns to find Ironburn hovering WAY too close. He startles back away and snarls, "Slaggit, don't you know the meaning of personal space?"
Soundwave's optics flicker a little silently. Then he asks solemnly "Original or corrupted?"
Robustus mms, "I see, well then I'll grab something we can spare should the experiment go wrong and we can get started."
"I do, but science doesn't!" Ironburn answers, but takes a step back anyway.
Starscream moves to stand, staring at Ironburn in a somewhat disconcerting manner now. "Corrupted. I want to compare it to an untainted nanite." Could he be considering volunteering the other Seeker's nanite for his experiments?
Robustus picks out a part that was going to be recycled, "This should do for the experiment." he intones. A glance at Starscream, "There should have been an uncorrupted sample in the testing that were already done."
"That may prove difficult, as we cannot access the actual programming in the same way we cannot reprogram it at this stage." muses Soundwave "we will have to reformat the programming once we are on their level." he nods at Robustus, activating a drone to go and acquire a shrinker chip system.
In perhaps an even more disconcerting manner, Ironburn snaps a salute, "I'll go look for someone who doesn't need one! Time to find an Autobot!" With that, she hops into the air and transforms, bursting into flight right back out of the lab.
"... One what? " asks Soundwave sharply
Robustus watches Ironburn get out of here like she had heard Starscream had space herpes... "Well guess it’s going to be Nitrogear helping you after all sir." this said to Starscream.
"We must remind younger members that they must wait for dismissal before leaving." note Soundwave irritably, keying his radio "Ironburn, cease and desist. return immediately."
There is the distant sound of crashing, before a yell, "I'm okay!" Before Ironburn flies back in and drops on her feet again. "Off to get an untainted nanite sample, permission to go, Commander Soundwave?"
"Denied. We do not need an untainted nanite sample. Please pay regards to speed restrictions or penalties will apply." notes Soundwave "We require a sample of the programming of the Nano bot, which currently is impossible due to their minute size Ironburn. However you will become useful when we go to harvest it. We will have to wait. Starscream, inquiry; estimated time required to reprogram the nanite?" he asks.
Starscream hehs faintly. That wasn't what he'd intended, but if it gets the annoying Seeker off of his afterburners, he's not about to complain. "I need to compare the physical characteristics of the nanites so I can be certain that I'm working with the correct programming protocols, Soundwave. You know that there were several different models back in the day, when mechs were created willy-nilly." Ironburn's abrupt return would amuse him, but it doesn't. "As soon as I have the nanite identified, a day at the most."
"Very well then. The computer has all the diagrams of the original Nanobots. However, we will not have a CORRUPTED version until we are shrunken." notes Soundwave evenly.
Robustus shakes his head a bit at the over exuberance of Ironburn. He stands by as the drone brings the device over and he takes it from it to examine it for the adjustments that will need to be made so the increase of shrink will be 200 percent.. or twice the normal amount typically.
"It is known that the ratio of increased power to shrinkage is exponential. Therefore we are likely to get more than 200% difference in size." notes Soundwave as he continues to assist Rob, but seems to be letting him do most.
Starscream gives up on trying to get a current nanite and goes back to the computer terminal to look up the images that Soundwave has likely taken of the corrupted nanites. Once he's found one he moves the image to a secondary screen and starts searching the historical banks to find its predecessor and a sample of the programming code language to match it.
Robustus nods to Soundwave as he finishes the calibrations, "The honor of testing it is all yours sir." the medic notes with a light smile, offering the chip to the mech.
Soundwave nods "Excellent. We will use ball bearings, with known weights so that we can use the mass to calculate the size of shrinkage."
Starscream finally hits on the correct nanite configuration and starts studying the programming code language that matches the nanite in question. He seems just fine to work WITHOUT assistance.
Robustus inclines his head and records the weights before the experiment is done on them. "Ready when you are sir."