Log Title: Be Our Guest
Location: Southeastern US; Airfield, Cobra Island
Date: December 27, 2009
Southeast United States - North America
Like the Northeastern US, this area extends from the Mississippi to the Atlantic and encompases a variety of states, including those states most commonly associated with the Old South. Once considered a backward region, the South has indeed risen again to become an area of culture and industry.
A Vector flies in from the south and lands not far from Turborat. A hatch in the vehicle's side opens and Major Bludd steps out, dressed in civilian clothes rather than the uniform and armour he typically wears.
Pennington follows suit...she fans herself rapidly with a hand, then finally resorts to pulling off her coat. "One day, we're bracing for a snowstorm, the next we're sweltering in humidity," she mutters.
Turborat looks a little more worse for wear. He's been charred in places, his wheels nothing but empty rims now, not a shred of rubber left. He watches nervously from under the 'cover' of some trees along the beach, eyeing all three of them nervously.
Bludd walks a short distance from the Vector and looks over toward the Transformer hiding behind the trees. "I understand someone needed some new tires," he calls.
Turborat is quiet a long moment, then sneaks out a few steps, opticing Bludd again warily. He nods then, not speaking as he stares atone, then the other, then the Vector "Y... Yes. I do. Eight. I talked to that gentleman who thought I was Joe." he notes.
Most of him was rust colored. The rest was a patchwork of different paints from the countless armors he's welded on to keep alive. His wheels are surprisingly in good shape though - duct taped here and there to hold them together. His optics used to be red, but now are a washed out pink.
Pennington wonders what, if anything, is in it for *them* to take the time and resources to cater to this strange robot. From what she's been able to gather, neither of the robot groups claim him as their own. She wishes she'd spoke more about this situation with Sebastian, because the most she can figure is he might be good for R&D department dissection.
As she thinks these things, she keeps an eye on the conversation, positioned somewhere between the Vector and Bludd.
Bludd peers at the robot's bare tire rims. "Hmm, looks like you've run into a bad spot, eh?" He hooks a thumb toward the Vector. "We've brought you something that might help. You'll need to come over here, though."
Vector seems curious. She tilts her long neck down to Turborat, and sniffs at it. "Autobot?" she asks.
Turborat eyes the Vector "... The Transorg wont eat me? " he asks, still nervous as he creeps forwards slowly, continuing along at a steady, but wary pace. He freezes then "Where??! Oh. Me? No. I'm not an Autobot." he notes nervously
Vector sniffs again "Decepticon?" it asks. "Is a Vector. What's trans-organic?"
Turborat shakes his head "No, not a Decepticon. A vector? Isnt that a math-thingy? A Transorganic is a monster that likes to eat me."
Major Bludd sighs. "This is not a trans-organic. It's a Vector. A machine. Now c'mon over here. I'm taking time out from my holiday to come and meet you, to /help/ you, and you're fussing about. Do you want the tires or not?"
"I'm a machine too remember." points out Turborat, moving forwards towards Bludd and the Vector. He still optics her gently "ERrr. Holiday? oh, okay. So what do you want me to do?" he asks, standing beside all three.
Pennington pulls her gloves and hat off, placing them inside her coat pocket. She wonders how much winter bungalows in Cuba run...
Bludd looks into the Vector's hold and gives a signal. Eight Battle Android Troopers run out and form a circle around Turborat. "I'm afraid I'm going to have to insist you come with us," he says mildly. "We have the tires you requested, but they're on Cobra Island. Now that you're in your robot form, you'll be able to make the trip with a minimum of discomfort."
Turborat tenses, optics flickering as he sees the humans surround him. He squeaks a little bit, shifting nervously "Oh. Uh, I thought he was going to float them over." he admits simply, looking to Bludd "How will we get there then?" he still didnt like this, continuing to eye them all, half twitchy.
Pennington looks on, raising a brow. Maybe this *was* going to be a late Christmas present for R&D, after all!
Major Bludd points into the Vector's hold. "You're going to get in there and we're going to take you to the island." He gestures nonchalantly to the androids. "Had to get these blokes out first. Both of you won't fit. But now there should be no trouble."
Turborat ohhs softly, but he still looks at Bludd uncertainly, then back to the vector, then back once more. He starts that way slowly, still having a bad feeling about it "The tires wouldnt fit?"
"Wow, you ask a lot of questions for someone who's essentially on the dole, don't you? If it's worth it to you to get new tires, why are you stalling?" Pennington asks.
Turborat stammers "I'm just curious that all. and I HATE flying." he explains simply to the Tele Vipre "that and... I still am remembering my promise not to trust anyone."
"Look at it this way," Bludd reasons, still playing the part of the mild-mannered helpful fellow, "on the island the techs can set you up with not only those new tires, but a cleaning of your systems, as well. You'll feel like a new robot!" His smile is becoming more and more forced; this play-acting is getting old fast.
Turborat grimaces a little "I'll go but NO CLEANING. I hate being cleaned. It TICKLES, and peices fall off" as he climbs into the Vector carefully, sniffing a few times.
"Fine, fine," Bludd agrees readily, "whatever you like." He pulls the cargo door shut, then speaks into his radio. "Vector Seven, pick up BAT Squad 17 at this location, then return to Cobra Island." He heaves a sigh and gives Pennington a long-suffering look, then climbs into the Vector's cockpit.
Pennington smirks at the look Bludd gives her, then she climbs into the cockpit as well. "Good thing he fits," she whispers.
Turborat sits down inside, still fidgeting nervously, "I dont think this was a good idea." he murmres.
"Let's go home," Bludd says. "I'll make sure Turborat has a nice welcome." He speaks into his radio again as the Vector takes off for Cobra Island.
<Cobra (IC)> Major Bludd says, "Techno-Vipers be advised the guest is enroute. BAT Squad 44 to the airfield immediately."
Airfield - Cobra Island
The main road comes to an end here at another clearing. A long airstrip runs across the clearing, in a roughly east to west direction. To the north of the strip, a series of hangars huddles at the edge of the forest.
The Vector overflies the island, coming to land on the airfield on the south end. Bludd climbs down from the cockpit, motioning to a squadron of BATs who have just marched onto the tarmac.
Turborat remains inside, fidgeting nervously, rubbing at his leg and shedding rust flakes there.
Major Bludd opens the Vector's cargo door and steps back. "C'mon out," he encourages.
Turborat nods and crawls out a little bit, pausing as he sees the bats "Uh... I... I dont have any weapons you know." he points out, growing further nervous as he stands.
"Don't worry about them," Bludd says, gesturing to the BATs. "They live here, too."
Pennington climbs out of the Vector, and remains on the tarmac, shaking her head as she thinks how much of a pain in the butt R&D will have on their hands with this one.
Turborat nods "Okay. " he states uncertainly "How long will this take? " ghe asks, turning to watch Bludd, to follow
Major Bludd backs away as the androids come closer. "Now, you know, Cobra has given you fuel, and now we're prepared to give you a new set of tires," he says. "But we want some return on our investment, you see? Our scientists have some ... questions for you, in exchange for the new tires." He motions to a trio of Techno-Vipers, who come trotting in from the edge of the field. They come up to Turborat, moving easily between the androids, and begin scanning him with odd devices, measuring him, and generally doing other incomprehensible engineer things.
Turborat pauses a moment "... You gave me fuel? " he asks, confused. He looks to the Vipers, optics watching each one nervously as he turns to try and keep all three in his view "... Uhm. Some questions? I dont know if I'll know what you want to know from me, but but I'll try."
"Yes, one of our Vectors donated some fuel to you, oh, a couple of months ago, I believe." Bludd stands in a casual parade rest stance as he watches the engineers go to town over the robot.
"We'll have to see the power core," one of the techs says. "Look at these readings. Ever seen the like?"
Turborat looks confused at Bludd, kneeling to look from one tech to the other, trying to see their datapadd now, losing his nervousness. Shinies!
Pennington steps over and eyeballs the tech's power readings. "...Are you serious?" She whistles low. "Damn."
Turborat isnt even that HEALTHY a transformer either.
One of the techs shakes his head. "Can't even imagine what kind of a power core this is...to make this level of power, the generator we'd need to make would be many times bigger than this robot's size!"
One of the techs is busily importing and sketching things into a tablet computer equipped with CAD software. He begins asking Turborat about his physical capabilities: strength, dexterity, his range in vehicular mode. "What kind of terrain can you cover as a vehicle? Wait, we should probably study the robot form first. Never mind."
Turborat blinks a few times "Then it wouldnt FIT in me." he points out to the technician. Turborat then looks at the other technician in confusion "Errr. Strength? What's your unit of strength called again? And I can go from... where was it... Autobot City to the border of Mexico in a day, if I dont have to hide too often. And anything smaller than half my wheel size." he pauses again, looking a little overwhelmed as he sat on the ground now
Major Bludd stands back and smiles at the engineers at work.
"How much weight can you lift?" a tech asks. "We use pounds as a unit of weight," he explains. He calls up a display of weight conversion and examples on his computer and shows it to Turborat.
"Let's scan his processors, they work so much like a human brain!" one of the excited techs says.
"Yeah, I'm dyin' to get a look at that power core," says another. "We oughta get it out so we can check it over more thoroughly."
Turborat focuses on it as he thinks, giving a rough uncertain estimate that was decently accurate "If I REALLY have to. I dont like to that often. I get tired." he looks at one Tech, then his optics flash "What?? You can't take it out! Its MINE!" he notes, putting an arm over his torso.
The tech who suggested removing the robot's power core responds nonchalantly, "We'd put it /back/ when we were done."
(Here we go,) thinks Pennington, as she stands near Bludd. (The fun begins.) She isn't in on the tech free-for-all, because she's still off duty and dressed in the clothes she wore on holiday.
"Done WHAT? You can look at it without touching it easily." Turborat points out "You can't just take it out like you would a wheel or head!"
"We can take off your head?" a tech pipes up excitedly.
Turborat pauses "ERrr. No. Not THAT head. " he notes "The other head."
The techs huddle up, discussing the potentials of examining Turborat's head.
"Yeah, don't you have a spare head or something?" another Tech says.
Turborat states "Yeah but its back on Cybertron, and its not really MINE, it belongs to someone else.
"He does have a spare head!" a tech says in awe. "How many spare heads do you usually have?"
"Just the one attached. I found the other one on the road. Like I said, its not MINE. And you cant take this one off. " he looks at Bludd, getting really uncomfortable right now
"Do robots from your planet routinely discard their heads on the road when they're done with them??" asks one of the techs, taking notes in his Blackberry.
Major Bludd shrugs helplessly at Turborat. Meanwhile the techs continue to buzz about the robot.
"We'll want to take more detailed readings of your power core," one says. "You're too big to fit into our buildings, so we'll need to bring out some equipment." He hollers at one of his fellows to go and retrieve a long list of technical gear.
"Not wilingly no. I think he left it behind or he was blown up. " explains Turborat, glancing to the first technician "... For putting on WHEELS>:"
In a few minutes a little golf-cart type vehicle pulling a mini-trailer of sorts rolls out onto the tarmac. It pulls up and parks near Turborat and the Techno-Viper driving it hops out and begins unloading bulky gear full of wires and control panels and meters.
A few more Technos whirl around Turborat, and begin attatching the probes at the ends of the wires to various places on his body.
Turborat squeaks and slides back on his back a little bit at the diodes. "Hey! Wait, what are those for?" he asks, alarmed now
"Well, we have to take readings!" one eager Tech says.
"It may take them a few days to get all the information they require," Bludd suggests mildly, casting a glance at his watch, "but once they're satisfied you'll get your tires. No worries."
"Y...you said they were going to ask QUESTIONS." points out Turborat uneasily "No taking anything out then!"
"One of the ways techs ask questions is to explore things," Bludd offers. "Take their readings and measurements and whatever. I'm sure they won't hurt you."
"They wanted to take my CORE out. That's like removing a ... a... " a pause as he thinks "The thing you guys think with."
Pennington finds Turborat's discomfort a little bit amusing, but she's at least trying to put on an uninterested air at the antlike swarming of the zealous Techno-Vipers.
Major Bludd lounges against the nearby Vector's side. "But you're a machine," he says, amusement tinging his voice. "They could ... take it out, then ... put it back in again. Right? Like changing your computer's CPU chip, right, Pennington?" He flicks her a grin.
Pennington smiles. "Exactly! They're just getting a closer LOOK At it, that's all. What's the harm in looking?"
Turborat says, ""Can I take out YOUR brain, look at it, and put it back in then?"
Turborat doesnt seem convinced "They can LOOK, but not taking anything out!" he repeats simply, watching the viper stick a diode to his leg, and it falls off, the rust crumbling.
"Been a long time since you had a bath, huh?" jokes a tech, picking up the fallen diode.
Bludd smiles. "We're not machines, my friend," he says reasonably.
One of the other techs eyes the rust. "Is this some kind of disease? I mean, are you rusting because you're sick? The other robots don't have rust on them like this..."
"... Uhm. Maybe? " the mech states "It always does that though. When it gets bad I just weld another peice on. Its gotten worse since I came to this planet though." Turborat confesses naively.
"I'm sure we can help you with that," a tech insists. "Once we've studied your metallurgical makeup, that is."
Turborat rubs at his leg a little "... I just came here for wheels. " he states simply "I can take care of myself except for that. But uh... Wait, what's that word? " he looks at the Vipre
"Rust?" the Techno-Viper asks, blinking.
The tech cocks his head to the side. "Which word? 'Metallurgical'? It means the properties of the metal that makes up your body."
Turborat shakes his head 'Nono. The word you say after 'no' when you decline something." he tries.
"Thank you??" the tech tries again.
Turborat ahhs and nods with a smile "That is it. Ahem: No thank you,. I just want new tires. But No thank you." he nods.
Pennington has to cough to cover up her laughter.
Bludd bites his lip to keep from grinning at Turborat.
"Well, we'll just stick to the examining parts, then," replies one of the techs, resuming his measuring of the robot with some odd device.
Turborat nods "Okay. " he lifts the diode, trying to reattach it to his leg, trying to help a little. "What does that one do? " he asks, pointing at the man's tool
"It takes more readings. That's all these do; they take readings," One of the techs says.
Turborat nods "Oh, well, okay." he states, and then adds "I dont think this thingy is going to stay on my leg. "
Bludd smiles genially at Turborat. "I think we'll leave the techs to do their work," he says.
Turborat nods nervously "O... okay." he states still, turning to watch the techs carefully
"Well...I think I'm going to go unpack, and check my inbox," Pennington says with a smile to Bludd, knowing full well how miserable Turborat's time on the island will be. "If you'll excuse me..."
Major Bludd nods to Pennington, returning the smile. "By all means."
Turborat watches her go, then looks back at Bludd "How long will this take again?" he asks.
Pennington saunters off.
"Oh, I don't know," Bludd says airily. "I'm not a technician. But when they're finished they'll set you up with your tires and you'll be free to go."
The techs continue to mill about Turborat, hooking him up to various and sundry devices and talking among themselves about their findings.
Turborat pokes them on occasion to ask questions, help or have a few fits. Once, he had to stand up and stretch, but generally tolerates it, not able to really feel much with his heavy armor. But he does make sure onthing is removed beyond swabs.
Major Bludd gives Turborat a wave of his hand as he, too, heads off the airfield. "Be seeing you," he calls.