Categories > Cartoons > Transformers > Retry
Bluestreak got out of the repair-bay, still rather moody in spite of the fact that his door was fixed once more. Yes, Bluestreak was aware that Ratchet's bark was worse than his bite, but that didn't mean that he had to put the medic's patience to the test. Besides, it was because of the medic that he actually had a new back after his old one got ruined during... that time. He didn't want all Ratchet's efforts go down the drain because of some foolish accident.
Bluestreak sighed as he recalled the fall. Sideswipe tried to make him feel better by claiming that the morning's little incident would eventually become one of those moments that one looks back and actually laughs, but... the gunner wasn't sure about it. All he wanted to do now was go to his room and stay there for the rest of the day if he could help it.
Bluestreak stopped on his tracks and looked to his left in surprise, for he didn't expect the twins would wait for him to come out of the repair-bay. And now that he saw both Sideswipe and Sunstreaker with such guilt-ridden faces, he wasn't sure what to do.
He decided to follow his instinct.
"Hey," he said courteously in order to hide his embarrassement. He pointed at his door. "Ratchet fixed it."
"Good," Sunstreaker said with a small nod.
"Did it hurt?" Sideswipe asked.
"No, no. It hurt more when I fell..."
Bluestreak stopped himself in mid-sentence, but it was too late; the damage was already done. Bluestreak could tell by the twins' cringing expression.
This conversation was /really/heading to a bad direction.
"I should be going," he declared, already turning on his heel to walk away.
Sideswipe's hand on his shoulder stopped him.
The gunner looked at the twins, involuntarily tensing as he did so. "What?"
"Attention. All available Autobots proceed to the main control room. Situation: Code Red."
Sideswipe, Sunstreaker and Bluestreak exchanged a troubled look, for they realised what was happening.
A Decepticon attack.
"Guess we'll talk later," Sunstreaker said. "Duty calls."
"Yeah," Bluesteak agreed with a sigh -somewhat relieved that he was able to get out of the awkward situation.
And with that, all three mechs hurried down the corridor. A few minutes later, they had arrived at the main control room, where several more Autobots had already gathered. Bluestreak recognised Ironhide easily enough, as well as Wheeljack and Mirage. Then there was a large black mech that looked a bit like Mallet; as well as a small red minibot which, for some reason, kept complaining that he was too old to run around whenever the Decepticons felt like attacking. Ratchet appeared soon afterwards, muttering something that sounded awfully much like "I knew it was too good to last."
Then last, yet certainly not least, the young gunner discerned the proud form of Optimus Prime. And now it seemed that the Autobot leader was very worried.
"We just got a distress signal from Jazz's team. They've been spotted by a group of Seekers and they can't shake them off their back. Hound has already been severely injured, whereas Cliffjumper's gun has malfunctioned. Blaster is jamming the Seekers' radar systems, but he can't handle them all at once. Bumblebee and Powerglide have already responded to their call for help; even so, reinforcements are required."
"Then what are we waiting for?!" Ironhide exclaimed. "We should be out there already!"
"Things aren't that simple," Optimus said, pressing a button to show a map of the hot spot he was talking about. Like everyone else in the room, Bluestreak stared at the screen, dismayed to see just how many Decepticons, marked as yellow dots, there were.
"The team has been forced to separate. Cliffjumper has remained with Hound, using this set of buildings as cover," Optimus explained. He pointed at a couple of red dots, and then pointed to one more, which was some distance away from the first two. "Blaster has taken position here."
"Makes sense," Wheeljack said thoughtfully. "He wants to make sure the Decepticons don't detect Hound and Cliffjumper."
"And Jazz?" Ratchet asked.
Optimus pointed at a lone dot that was moving swiftly in circles, three yellow dots following it close behind. "There. He's been distracting some of the Seekers to make things easier for Blaster."
"And got himself in even worse trouble," the black mech said, shaking his head. "He can only keep this up for that long."
"Indeed, Trailbreaker," Prime said. "That's why I want you, Sunstreaker and Sideswipe to go out there and offer him assistance. Ironhide, Mirage, Gears and I will help out Blaster. Ratchet, you and Wheeljack will have to go to Hound and assess the damage he got. Bluestreak will be going with you to offer backup. Is that understood?"
Bluestreak nodded along with the others.
"All right," Optimus said. "Autobots, transform and roll for it!"
Bluestreak dared a peek around the corner, only to quickly pull himself back before the Decepticon blaster hit him.
"How many?" Ratchet asked, trying to be heard above the chaos of battle even though he was standing right next to the gunner. He was holding his medical kit in one hand and his laser gun in the other, ready to defend himself if necessary.
"Just one," Bluestreak replied.
"Can you handle him?" Wheeljack said.
Bluestreak didn't need to be told twice. Totting his own gun, his optics scanned the open area for any kind of natural cover. As soon as he found some suitable rubble, he leapt out of his hiding place and then rolled gracefully behind them so to aim at the Decepticon who kept firing at him.
Unlike his opponent, Bluestreak didn't miss.
"Clear," he transmitted to Wheeljack and Ratchet in the private frequency, ready to fire at the sight of another Decepticon.
Ratchet and Wheeljack complied. They transformed to their alternate modes and drove across the open area, trusting Bluestreak to keep any enemy fire off their backs. As soon as they were safe behind a building, Bluestreak sprang out of his cover and joined them as fast as his feet could carry him.
"They sure enjoy making things hard for us," Ratchet said with a huff. "How much further, Wheeljack?"
"Actually, we're here," Wheeljack replied, looking at the monitor of a small tracking device he was holding. "Hound and Cliffjumper are inside this building."
"Not with any unwelcome company, Ihope?"
"Nope, not even one Decepticon inside."
"Are you sure?" Bluestreak asked.
"Right," Bluestreak said. "Still, I'll go first."
And with that, he walked cautiously at the entrance of the building. The doors were already opened, something that made Bluestreak twice as alert; he didn't want any unexpected surprises, after all. In fact, it was only after he had made perfectly certain the place wasn't dangerous that he signalled Ratchet and Wheeljack to come in as well.
"Any sign of Hound and Cliffjumper?" Ratchet asked, looking around him. Now that they were inside the building, the noise of the battle was muffled, allowing him to converse in a soft tone.
"I didn't see anything," Bluestreak replied.
It was then that they heard a familiar voice to their left.
"Boy, am I glad to see you guys or what," Cliffjumper said, stepping out from the shadows of the room. He tossed away the huge rock that he had apparently picked up in case he had to fight while still unarmed. "I thought you'd never show up!"
"Well, we're here now," Ratchet replied, waving his hand dismissively. "How's Hound?"
Cliffjumper shook his head. "He's still functioning, but he's in pretty bad shape. And he went offline a few minutes ago."
"Then take me to him," the medic said, already prodding Cliffjumper forward. "There's no point wasting time here."
Cliffjumper nodded and guided Ratchet and Wheeljack to the other room. Bluestreak followed, but he regretted that decision the moment he caught sight of Hound. For the green mech's torso was torn, with wires and fluid spilt out in a ghastly manner. Even one of his arms was blown away, leaving nothing behind but a nasty hole where the socket should be.
But the thing that unnerved Bluestreak the most was the slack, off-line expression in the mech's features; because then Hound looked like... dead...
With hands gripping his gun tightly, Bluestreak averted his gaze at once, somehow hoping he would be spared the images that started flowing in his mind. For he couldn't think of that, he shouldn't/. He wasn't back /there anymore... It was /over/...
Bluestreak almost jumped when he heard the voice cutting into his thoughts, but it only turned out to be Wheeljack. "Y-yeah?"
The mechanic placed a cautious hand on the gunner's shoulder. "You're shivering."
"I am?" Bluestreak checked himself, only to realise Wheeljack was right. "Oh..."
"What's wrong with him?" Cliffjumper asked, noticing Bluestreak's unquiet state too.
"Never you mind what's wrong with him!"Ratchet exclaimed in a voice that was too much like a growl. Still using one hand to screw a couple of Hound's cables back in place, he reached for his gun with his other and handed it over Cliffjumper. "Here. You'll need this to cover our afts while I work on Hound." He faced Bluestreak. "And you... get out."
Bluestreak flinched. "But... Optimus said..."
"You did your job. Cliffjumper can take it from here just fine," Ratchet said gruffly. He locked his optics on the gunner's. "Get out there and keep yourself occupied."
Only then did Bluestreak understand what Ratchet was telling him. Nodding at him slowly, yet gratefully, he rushed out of the building and towards the battle.
Because his memories couldn't catch up with him there.
"Hey, look who's decided to join!"exclaimed a voice from high above.
Bluestreak looked up, and he allowed himself a grin as he recognised Powerglide. "Couldn't let you guys have all the fun!" he called back at him.
"Don't worry, there's plenty to go round," the flier said. At the next moment, he made such an abrupt turn that Thundercracker, who was chasing him this whole time, crashed on one of the nearby buildings. "Though I had dibbs on this one."
Bluestreak couldn't help it. He laughed."I wouldn't dream of claiming that one anyway!" he said.
However, as he watched Thundercracker crash down, an idea occurred to him. He couldn't manage a good aim while on the ground, certainly not when most of the Decepticons where so high up in the air. That meant he had to get higher as well - as fast as possible.
"Hey, Powerglide, I need a favour!" he transmitted to the minibot flier. "Could you give me a lift? I want to get on top of one of those buildings!"
"Sure thing!" Powerglide said, releasing a piece of strong wire so that he could pull the gunner up. "Just hold on tight... and away we go!"
Bluestreak did just that, letting out acry of surprise - and even exhilaration - when he found himself high up in the air. The air whistling by his audio receptors and the sight of mechs and structures alike from such a different point of view was nothing compared to driving, that was for sure.
It was no wonder Powerglide loved flying so much.
"All right, this is where I'll have to let you go!" Powerglide said at that moment, placing Bluestreak gently on one of the roof-tops. "Show them what you've got!"
"I will!" the gunner said, waving at the flier in a gesture of thanks before looking down to see how things stood.
Powerglide had picked a good spot for him, Bluestreak had to admit. He could see Optimus and his team, fighting alongside Blaster. They didn't seem to have much problem fighting off the Decepticons that circled above them though.
Trailbreaker's team, on the other hand...
Even from this distance, Bluestreak could clearly see Trailbreaker, Sideswipe and Sunstreaker trudging toward Optimus and the others with great difficulty, trying to keep the Decepticons that were attacking them at bay. And, what was worse, Trailbreaker couldn't activate his force-field, because he was too busy helping a limping Jazz to walk.
Bluestreak didn't lose any time. He lifted his gun and aimed at one of the Decepticons.
Steady... there's no rush... Prowl's words during training echoed within the gunner's mind. Wait for the moment your optics only see the target and nothing else... then fire.
Bluestreak did. He didn't even bother to watch the Seeker crash down to the ground as he took aim again. The moment he squeezed the trigger, another Seeker fell down with black smoke coming from his wings. And he felt quite the grim satisfaction when he saw Sunstreaker hitting another one.
That was enough. The remaining Decepticons retreated, obviously thinking that they couldn't win this fight. The sound of cheers rose in the air, and Bluestreak smiled as Trailbreaker and the others reached Optimus's team, safe at last.
His smile broadened when Trailbreaker, Jazz and the twins looked up at his direction, giving him a thumbs-up for a job well-done.
What he didn't expect was to see their happy expression suddenly changing to one of horror.
"Bluestreak, get out of there!" Optimus transmitted, and the gunner was shocked to hear such urgency.
But then he heard the roar of a flying mech right behind him, followed by Starscream's voice.
"It's payback time, Autobot!"
Bluestreak turned around in the hopes of hitting Starscream before it was too late. However, Starscream proved faster this time. His rays hit the spot where the gunner was standing, splitting the roof in two with a loud cracking sound.
But Bluestreak didn't have the luxury to register who cried that out. At the next moment he was falling down amid chunks of debris, the whole world spinning out of control. All he could do was close his optics, hoping for a miracle that he knew would probably never come.
Suddenly, there was a heavy clank of metal hitting against metal, and Bluestreak was surprised to feel a pair of arms wrapping around his form. Even his drop seemed to slow down for some reason, and he thought he heard someone telling him that everything was fine.
Even so, it was still not enough. Yes, he wasn't falling as swiftly as before, but the spinning didn't stop not even for a second. And Bluestreak somehow knew that it wouldn't be long before the impact, which meant the other's efforts would have been for nothing.
Bluestreak's thoughts were cut off at the sound of a second, much heavier clank, during which Bluestreak felt like his insides jostled out of place.
The last thing Bluestreak registered before everything went black was that the landing didn't hurt as badly as he had expected.
"Come on, wake up, will you?"
Bluestreak didn't know who was calling him. Nevertheless, he complied - and soon regretted it when he realised his back hurt like someone had beat it to a scrapheap with a sledgehammer.
"Primus, what happened?" he asked with a groan. And why was he lying down?
Sunstreaker came into view, indulging the gunner with an answer.
"You decided to take a dive off the roof," he reminded the gunner.
"Without a parachute," Sideswipe added right beside his twin; then brought up a fist in front of Bluestreak's optics. "How many fingers am I holding up?"
Bluestreak sighed and swatted the hand away. "Very funny," he said. He sat up, wincing as he did so, in order to have a look at his surroundings. They were in a small room, just the three of them.
"Weren't we outside before?" he asked, trying to piece everything together once more.
"Prime said we should get you away from enemy fire," Sunstreaker explained.
"Oh..." Bluestreak said, understanding."And where are the others?"
"They're keeping guard while Ratchet finishes with Hound. As soon as he stabilises him, we'll be able to return to Iacon," Sideswipe answered.
"Good. 'Cause once we get there, I'll ask Optimus for a vacation," Bluestreak said tiredly. "My back's killing me."
Sunstreaker winced. "Yeah, sorry about that."
Bluestreak stared at Sunstreaker in confusion. "What do you mean? You didn't do anything..."
It was then that the gunner noticed something very strange about the twins. Indeed, Sideswipe's crimson chassis was scratched and marred with specks of silver. Sunstreaker's chassis, on the other hand, was sporting quite a heavy dent, as though something heavy was dropped on the yellow mech.
Wait a minute...
Bluestreak turned to face Sideswipe, optics wide-open.
"You used your jetpack and grabbed me as I was falling!" he said, before pointing at Sunstreaker. "And you cushioned our fall!"
The twins nodded, something that made Bluestreak feel very uncomfortable. He blushed in an embarrassed manner.
"You... didn't have to..." he mumbled.
"Yes, we did," Sideswipe said at once. "It was the least we could do after the damage we caused you."
"But, it wasn't your fault!" Bluestreak said. "Honestly!"
"It's still not an excuse for what we did," Sunstreaker insisted. "You're an okay enough mech and a fellow Autobot; you didn't deserve that. So..." And with that, he extended a hand at the gunner. "Friends?"
Bluestreak nodded, a small smile tugged on his features as he took Sunstreaker's hand to complete the handshake.
"Friends," he said.
"Swell," Sideswipe said at that moment, shaking his head. "But I hope you two realise our blossoming friendship will end tragically after Ratchet kills all three of us."
"Don't remind me, Bro," Sunstreaker said with a sigh.
Bluestreak blinked, unsure what to make of that statement. "Why?"
This time, the twins settled with pointing at Bluestreak's left. That made the gunner very nervous, for aterrible suspicion crawled up his spinal axis. Fearing the worst, Bluestreak looked around...
... and saw his left door-panel bent out of shape.
"Primus..." the gunner exclaimed mournfully.
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