Prime - Saturday, August 06, 2011, 12:06 AM
A large Radio Tower stands in the middle of a heavily forested area, surrounded by trees. It seems kind of unnatural to see trees in the wastelands of Cybertron, as the rest of the land is barren. The radio tower itself stands up tall into the distance, looking up at it; it appears that the tower has been heavily damaged and has suffered years of decrepitating. The dish of the tower, although heavily rusted seems like it might just broadcast if given a signal. Beyond the dish of the tower, the open sky is visible to view.
Here in a radio Dead Zone, a giant battleplatform sat. Underneath in its' shade, was Solarix, sitting there patiently at the rondevu point. He had told Siege they were meeting someone here, and sworn the mech to secrecy. Now they had but wait, the radios eerily silent save for constant white noise. He shifts his wings a little bit, not wearing his banners this day, but a cloak to cover himself and insulate " They are quite prompt usually." he remarks to his escort.
The radio deadzone seemed to muffle sounds as well as sensor readings, but the sound of three engines coming up the silent road, wind blowing small debris around on the ground as all three of autobots arrived at the meeting point and transformed.
Optimus Prime transforms and stands up, stepping forward to greet the Heirophant. "Solarix," He says, nodding in greeting.
Prowl follows suit, dipping both his head and doorwings by way of greeting, though he doesn't speak. He isn't particularly fond of being this fond out in the open, and is keeping all his sensors carefully focused on the area around them.
The road is covered by mighty guns, the owner of whom covers the stretch of road. Entrenched and braced, there is little that can escape his sight or the vast sweep of the artillery of one Siege. As Optimus approaches, there is but the few terse words granted. "Here they are now...." He does not bother to put the autobots within his field of fire, for their honor can be counted on, even if they are heretics. Still, he holds his silence, the glyph inscribed artillerist trusting to the words of the Holy Father.
Elita One transforms a moment after Prowl and gives the area a cursory look before focusing on the mechs they have come to speak with. The battlestation in particular gets a sharp appraising glance. Standing slowly, Solarix takes a single step out in front of the guns, leanign on his staff. He watches the three vehicles arrive, and nods his head to the commanders "Optimus Prime... Prowl, Elita One." a smile to the last. "Your message was quite urgent. I came as soon as I was able to write up a cover story." he remarks "So I hope this IS of importance, but I know you wouldnt call me here for frivolous purposes."
Optimus Prime shakes his head gravely. "No, I am afraid not. One of your students, Groove, is currently in Iacon, and I'm afraid a security threat has arisen concerning him. I'd like to request that he be allowed to remain in Iacon until the matter has been resolved."
A pause from Solarix, his face darkening "My student did not dishonor his City, did he? " asks the mech, his wings rustling unhappily under his cloak "Or did you mean there is a risk TO him through this security threat?"
Siege remains patient, the sweep of his eyes moving across each of the autobots. His mass shifts as the grand cannons increment slightly downwards. There is no judgement just yet, but it seems that something has piqued his interest.
"A threat to him, and his brothers, specifically." Optimus Prime says. "Groove has been a credit to you an Crystal City, but due to the circumstances, I am uncomfortable allowing him to return to Crystal City even with the resources that you have to protect yourselves."
"We have held out just as long as Iacon against the invading Decepticons Prime. He is as safe here as in Crystal City. As my charge, his safety IS mine first." notes Solarix, with a frown. His wings flip a little bit as he relaxes though "If it is the trip itself, I can ensure extra guards for his return. What is this threat against him and his... brothers?"
Prowl speaks up quietly at this point. "The Decepticons have somehow become aware of what they believe to be a 'special project' of the Autobots. Currently we are unsure of how much they know, though we have been able to feed them some false information that may assist in confusing their source. I am working personally with the Autobot head of Security to resolve the matter."
Optimus Prime sighs, and glances at Prowl as the tactician speaks up. Prowl will not approve of what he is considering doing. "Is your guardian trustworthy? Not just with your own life, but the lives of your student, and other younglings? And perhaps more than that?"
"A secret project? INvolving one of my people, and a former Rescuer of mine? " asks Solarix simply "He is." responds the Heirophant, without hesitation at all. That was his confidence in Siege.
Elita One remains silent, most likely here in the same capacity as Siege.
Though Prowl's optics snap immediately to Optimus as his doorwings hitch up slightly, he doesn't speak up, waiting to hear what his leader has to say before passing judgement on the idea.
Optimus Prime considers the other Crystal City mech, but in the end, trusts Solarix's judgement. "Yes. Him, and four others. Created together, and intended to function as a team." How much needs to be said? "What happens to one affects them all, and keeping them safe and out of Decepticon hands is /vital/ to the future of Cybertron."
Siege looks at Optimus curiously, almost as if one were examining a particularly vicious strain of cockroach. Violet eyes watch warily, blinking, finally opening. His anger in not impetuous, but that provoked of one whose faith and honor have not just been questioned, but insulted. It comes late, but it comes with full force. "I was not aware heretics were allowed to impugn the faithful, Hierophant. Tell him he is not to question my integrity, when it is he and his compatriots, along with their enemies, who commit the mortal sin of spilling and wasting the lifeblood of Primus in their blasphemous war. We can protect the faithful as we always have."
Elita One narrows her optics at Siege. She debates commenting back at the battlestation mech, but suspects that Prime would not appreciate it... even if the zealot's words WERE an insult aimed directly at the Autobot leader.
"You have told him so very well yourself Siege, that I need not repeat what you have declared. What is plain to you and I is not always plain to those who deal more intimately with the traitors and sneaks of the Decepticons." notes Solarix, his voice soothing, but also agreeing with Siege.
And then Solarix rubs his chin somewhat with his free hand. His optics got this odd look to them "Hmm. A quintforce?" he murmers softly "Could it... very interesting." it seems for a moment, the Autobots were forgotten.
Then he snaps back to it, wings flicking out sharply "Yes, it is VERY vital. But... if I may ask. If you know you have a leak, then is Iacon not a more dangerous place if you are already infiltrated?" "That has yet to be determined. I am firmly convinced that Iacon itself remains the safest place for all of them, or I would not have requested this meeting. The existence of a leak within Iacon itself is insubstantiated at this time." Optimus Prime glances at both Prowl and Elita. "We have additional security measures which we can put into place if the threat is determined to have any substance, but the external threat is undeniable."
"If absolutely necessary, it is possible for us to place the entire city under lockdown." Prowl adds, "As well of the added security of being surrounded by trained fighters, should any internal threat arise."
At the words of the Heirophant, Siege returns to watching the road. Every now and again, there is a minute whine of his optics zoom in and out, the sensor and radio blackout forcing him to usual more traditional methods of spotting. He has been reassured that his honor is intact, and he will leave negotiations to Solarix. He has defended himself against accusation, anything further would be without point. Still, the notion that they would detain a fellow believer..."He who believes in the Father will want for no weapon or armor. Faith is a stronger aegis than anything formulated by the fallible hands of his children."
Solarix nods slowly "I do not doubt your abilities to hold fast against the Decepticons." he admits. But then he adds "But /I/ would feel more comfortable if my student was here, where I can ensure his safety myself. Crystal City can lock down as well if necessary, and we have as many trained fighters as the Autobots. I am sorry, but no - he must return." the serious mech stated, turning to look at Prime in the face, a hint of regret there.
Elita One considers Solarix's decision, and barring the religious rhetoric overlaying the elder mech's words, there is logic to be found. She steps closer to Prime and offers quietly, "There is logic in this, Prime. If the young ones are not all in the same place, it will be more difficult for the Decepticons to apprehend them to study."
Optimus frowns, the expression mostly hidden by his mask, although his optics narrow slightly. "You allowed him to come with a guard. If it is supervision that concerns you, send more guardians. I am concerned that your defensive measures are designed to protect the whole of the city- not a single individual mech, with very few exceptions."
"There are safe sanctuaries for individuals within the City. I have to use one each time there is a Raid." Solarix responds simply, his wings settling once more "our defensive measures are more than enough. I need my Guardians here, and you /know/ that I cannot agree to the Autobots protecting one of our citizens. IT would breach our neutrality." his own face was a stone, but that look was still apologetic "I wonder though if you have another reason for keeping him?"
Elita One can't help but agree with Prime's assessment, but as she agrees with Solarix on separating the young mechs (even if for a completely different reason), she offers a compromise. "Perhaps I could accompany the individual in question back to Crystal City? That way, if nothing else, we can maintain a secure line of communication between the five."
"Our only concern at the moment is his safety." Prowl answers quietly, one wing twitching slightly.
"Anything else is secondary until we can assure that." He pauses, looking over at Elita with a frown. "I do not believe that to be a good idea, Elita. An Autobot commander apparently going missing, even if you are able to remain beneath the radar, would draw too much attention."
Optimus Prime exvents air. "Does this preclude him returning at a later date, should he choose to do so? And can arrangements be made to ensure his safety- arrangements on a par with your own, Solarix?" His eyes are narrow above the mask.
Elita One can't help but scoff faintly at Prowl's words. "You know as well as I do that the Decepticons dismiss me as less important than a minibot most of the time. Even if my absence is noted, I really don't think it would cause them to change whatever plans they have."
With a faint chuckle, Solarix smiles "He lives in the Monastery. Perhaps the safest place beyond the Temple, and they are intimately linked. I do not want to make a big production out of his security - but he WILL be watched, and assigned a Guard from my own personal entourage. And while I appreciate the offer, Elita One, there are also still some who would dissapprove of a Femme in the Monastery, but I do think Murusa would not mind the company on the voyage back to Crystal City - and back to Iacon, when the time is right." he stated indicating an agreement to allow Groove to return. "He is still a citizen though of Crystal City, remember."
Prowl remains silent, displeased with how this meeting seems to be unfolding, but holding his thoughts until either asked or allowed. In the back of his processor, he begins to run a series of simulations, trying to predict the best way to alter the possibilities to a more favorable outcome than the one he's currently presented with.
Siege leans closer to get a better vantage, and perhaps to grant the further protection of his shadow, metaphorically speaking, to Solaris. "He _is_ a citizen of Crystal City, and a Brother. We should not be having this discussion at all. You have no right to detain him or impose conditions on his liberty or movements." He turns down still further, as if searching the optics of Solaris for explanation.
"You give away so much, Holy One. Who are we to say these Autobots will not ask for still more in the future, in the name of _their_ definition of what the greater good is?"
Elita One's optics focus on Solarix as he speaks, and when he DARES to throw the gender card at her (even though she knows only too well that that's just how the Crystal City people are) she almost visibly bristles and starts to take a step toward the religious leader.
"May I request that you allow my own chief of security, Red Alert, to review the specific security measures? Groove's continued safety is exceedingly important to the Autobots." Optimus says and narrowing his optics slightly at Elita One.
Flicking one doorwing to brush against Elita One's shoulder in a silent reminder, Prowl focuses on the religious leader. "I also would like to be allowed to review your security measures." If he can't keep an optic on the mech himself, he'll at least ensure he has the best possible security outside of Iacon.
Solarix remains where he is, despite the leaning and steppign going on around him. HIs wing though, start to glitter faintly. He holds a hand up to Elita, and then turns first to Siege "You are very right." is all he says "But it is better to make friends, than enemies Siege. I will explain more when we return."
"My apologies Elita, for I do admire you greatly on a personal level. I still should not have said such a thing. As for your request Optimus... I think my own chief of security would protest if I gave away our secrets so liberally, even to one such as yourself. We are not allies after all. The youngling though will be given the utmost protection, you have my PERSONAL oath on that matter." he touches his hand to his breastplate, where the symbol for Crystal City was emblazoned. "And I take personal responsbility should anything happen to him."
Optimus Prime sighs. "I would at least like to send Elita and a group of guards with him when he returns to Crystal City. I accept that your personal assurance will suffice for the city itself, but the journey involved is not a short one."
The brush of Prowl's doorwing against her shoulder brings her up short, and gives Solarix enough time to successfully smooth over proverbial ruffled feathers. She nods and backs up that same step she already took.
"I will defer to your wisdom, Heirophant, though I do question what kind of friends are so very keen to demand we hand over the keys to the kingdom." Siege muses, peering balefully down at Elita. He may be a longer ranged mech, but he is still willing to level this entire place with him atop it if it protects Solarix. Once discussion of Autobots being within the city ceases though, he relents and lets the negotiations resume. A disciple after all must place faith in his shepherd.
Solarix nods at Siege, a silent thanks of his words as he turns back to the Autobots "A 'group' of guards may be too conspicuous, no? It would attract attention to the small mech being brought to CRystal City. But I cannot control what YOu do beyond my city gates, Prime." Basically saying 'do it, but I can't approve of it officially. "All this for one little youngling, how our world turns on such small things at times, hmm?"
Optimus Prime amends his earlier comment. "A small group- an inconspicuous one. But he /must/ be guarded. Bigger things revolve around this than you know, Solarix."
"Bigger things than I know? " Solarix raises an eyebrow.
"Optimus...?" There's some hesitation in Prowl's tone, uncertain whether or not he should halt his leader. On one hand, the fewer who know the better. On the other, if Solarix is aware of the exact nature of his charge, perhaps it will affect how well he is guarded.
Optimus Prime glances at Prowl and nods. Solarix is trustworthy.
Elita One glances at Optimus Prime and starts planning on how to be inconspicuous. Might need to have some cloth fabricated. The subtext between Prowl and Prime goes unnoticed by her as she visually studies Solarix and starts doing mental calculations. This likely comes across as more staring.
Prowl pauses for a moment more, doorwings twitching in thought. "...Very well." He turns his attention back to Solarix. "We have decrypted several memory files, from Groove and three of the others, that suggest more than a simple familial or team bond. This, combined with several kinds of otherwise inexplicable code and the apparent need for secrecy they have had since their creation, leads us to believe they may, in fact, be a combiner team."
A wing moves slowly at that, And Solarix nods "I had guessed so when you told me there were five." he remarks "But I suppose I dared not say it in case it were untrue. So there ARE still gestalts that walk the world. I see why they are so valuable to you. Such a thing could turn the War for... or against." he notes, ponderously as he leans on his staff quite hard. "The Gestalts are more than just the stuff of legends."
Solarix says, "That is quite a... ahem... large bill for younglings to fit into so soon."
Optimus Prime shakes his head. "And we have no intention of forcing them into that role- something the Decepticons will have no hesitation about doing."
"Indeed, which is reassuring to know." agrees Solarix "They will fill their role in the prophecies as intended, no matter what we do - which is why we must do exactly what we would usually do. I can ensure that you are updated on the youths' progress and health, and ensure he is kept safe, but not a prisoner in his own home. Very few outsiders visit the Monastery, and it is rare for Students to leave it unsupervised. Note though, that I do not HAVE to do this - you cannot hold him, and once he is back, I can do as I please. In return for this, I would ask that any information found as to the gestalt technology is shared with Crystal City - not openly of course, but on the same level as you would one of your Chief of Commands, and I will hold it to the same secrecy." There was never something without a hitch.
Prowl frowns again. "Our head of Security will dislike that as much as yours would dislike sharing his plans." He answers, helm tilting forward slightly as he considers. "Any sort of transfer holds risk of the Decepticons gaining access to it, which we cannot allow to happen."
Optimus Prime waits patiently for Solarix to finish and shakes his head at Prowl. "If there is no way to change your mind, it will have to do, although I do reiterate that if Groove chooses to rejoin his brothers at a later date, the Autobots /will/ support his decision to do so."
"Fair enough, PRowl." accedes Solarix "I agree on that note. " he looks at Prime, and comments "His oaths to CRystal City cannot be forgotten - as he grows and the danger lessens, he can of course, visit Iacon as any member of Crystal City can. As for a more permanent change though...we are not unkind, and if he chooses that path, we will see if we can work something out." he smirks a little, amusement glinting in his old optics "If you keep taking my younglings from me, we may have to have harsher words, Optimus Prime."
"I believe it could be argued that you stole them from me, Solarix- the entire team was originally created in Iacon, from what our scientists have been able to determine." Optimus's optics crinkle slightly at the corners, the only sign that he's smiling behind his mask. "But supervising this group is quite enough for now."
"They were FOUND in my city though. Finders, keepers." quips back the old priest with a chortle of his own. "Is the matter settled then?"
Elita One looks at Solarix oddly as he starts cracking jokes. Not the sort of behavior she'd have expected from the old mech.
"For now," Optimus Prime allows. "I hope that we will have no reason to revisit it in the future. Our compromise is a reasonable one."
"Situations can change suddenly, Prime. You know that I support your cause, even if I cannot act within it." notes Solarix. He then notes the look from Elita One "If I am seriuos all the time, my lady, I would go plain mad. And amongst those I consider my peers, I find it is a good way to cool embers of negotiation." he explains.
Elita One ohs faintly at Solarix's words. She can understand that, but that doens't mean she doesn't still find it odd.
Prowl remains silent throughout the exchange, still not entirely pleased with the outcome but temporarily mollified by the agreement.
"I should return now to Crystal City. They tend to check on me even when they shouldnt." remarks Solarix a he straightens. Siege no doubt, transforms for the trip back.
Optimus Prime nods. "We should return as well. Groove will return to Crystal City as soon as an escort can be arranged."
"Excellent. He has been missed. He is a very good student. " notes Solarix with a smile "I had been pondering ideas on if he did wish to stay though, so there are plans in the making, Prime." Prowl dips both his head and doorwings in respect once more, stepping back from the meeting to wait for Optimus.