Log Title: Field Repairs
Date: February 26, 2017
TP: End of Days TP
Summary: Valour submits himself to DreadTread's TLC. Dreadwind joins them, which doesn't make anyone happy.
As logged by Valour - Sunday, February 26, 2017, 8:50 PM
Iacon Plain - Northern Hemisphere - Cybertron
- Iacon is an Autobot-controlled city-state, located near the north pole of Cybertron. It is also the location of the capital city of the same name. It is by far the largest and most well-defended Autobot settlement on Cybertron. It is home to the military command on Cybertron, as well as the center of Autobot culture. Even Autobots originally from other parts of Cybertron tend to call Iacon home. Most Autobot residents dwell in the Great Dome, although there are other locations in Iacon, including Nova Point.
DreadTread scans Valour, her expression serious but not grave...yet.
- Acting Air Commander Valour is a tall, powerfully-built Seeker, built to command, and with the demeanor of one who takes his station in life very seriously. His armour is a deep glossy black, usually shined so spotlessly as to practically reflect lasers. Stylish, well-designed indigo highlights bring out the strength and agility of his form, and his face is a deep, royal purple, with crimson optics burning with determination. His upper limbs are armed with black and chrome autocannons and dark violet gauntlets. His chest is translucent lavender, treated to resist all but the most powerful forms of artillery. On his back are a splendid pair of ebon wings, each proudly displaying the Decepticon sigil. Clasped to his waist is the handle of an electrified ener-sabre, ever at hand. Valour's optics sweep the area with an almost supernatural awareness of his surroundings, and very little seems to catch him off his guard.
Valour sits very still for his scan. Valour's internal repairs haven't been keeping up with him, since he hasn't been resting as much as he should. He's still seriously injured, but he's been walking around anyway, trying to organize the troop effort. His patrols fly overhead, keeping the Autobots hemmed in their city.
DreadTread shakes her head. "Should I even ask what happened?" She takes out a field tool kit and opens it, revealing several dozen small tools neatly packed inside. She removes a neural inhibitor patch and places it on Valour's chest, to deaden the pain receptors as she works.
"Nothing new," Valour says testily. "I'm still recovering from my battle with Optimus Prime. I've not been about to rest completely -- until Starscream arrives, I am in command of our Aerospace forces." He holds very still, letting DreadTread repair him even as he internally chafes at the forced inactivity. His optics dart to Iacon in the distance, where diligent workers attempt to repair damage done to the Great Dome.
DreadTread then takes off your cracked housing, and using a soldering iron and some electromagnetic nerve fibers, deftly repairs the connections allowing Valour to have full movement once again. Upon finishing repairs, she replaces the cracked housing and applies some resealant stimulant from a tube onto the damaged areas, which immediately begin to mend.
DreadTread nods. "From what I understand about Optimus Prime, it seems like he was being gentle with you." DreadTread finishes the repairs and removes the neural inhibitor patches. "You should be able to resume normal duty within the hour, Commander."
Valour gives DreadTread a grateful grin, his earlier testiness gone. "Thank you, DreadTread," he says sincerely. "If that was Prime's idea of 'gentle', I'm very lucky he didn't attack me full strength. I barely made it back to our line alive."
Valour looks down the line at the assorted tanks and artillery pieces of Shockwave's Assault Infantry division. Megatron had Shockwave lay siege to Iacon to keep the Autobots busy while he finishes that sinister plan beneath Kalis. "How are the other troops? We've done a pretty good job of keeping the Autobots on defence so far."
DreadTread says, "Most are fully operational, however, some are in need of regularly scheduled maintenance...however, this is not a task easily accomplished on the front line."
Valour nods. "And with most of Nemesis's medtech division assigned elsewhere, we're a little short on techs. I'll see if I can get Swindle here to help -- maybe if I offer him a bonus per troop, he'll be motivated to help pick up the slack. I appreciate your help out here. You're literally a lifesaver," he smiles. Standing, he stretches carefully, stifling a wince. He gently touches his fresh repairs. "Don't worry," he promises. "I'll take it easy."
DreadTread nods and salutes. "War has a way of making a medic's social life very full."
Valour chuckles, optics narrowing in suppressed pain. "It has a way to keep commanders from having any social lives at all," he muses. "But I suppose that goes with the job," he says uncomplainingly. He twists slightly, fluttering his wings. "How long before I'm safe to fly?" he asks, as if every moment ground-bound is a prison sentence.
DreadTread says, "It should be safe...within reason...if you don't acede 1000 meters above the surface. Anything above that and you risk atmospheric reaction."
Valour nods quickly. "Understood. Thanks again. I'll follow your recommendations as closely as possible," he promises. He slowly takes out a command tablet and pulls up the current rosters, looking over the ongoing patrol routes and making slight adjustments. He then looks down the line of ground-pounders -- not technically his responsibility, but while he is the officer on scene, he tries to maintain discipline for all divisions in the field.
Valour slowly walks the lines of Decepticon Assault Infantry. He's in better shape than he has been, but still carries himself even more stiffly than usual. Above him, Aerospace patrols have kept the Autobots on defence, but Valour isn't one to rest on his laurels.
Dreadwind is currently on a break from patrolling. Actually, it's not so much as him needing a break, as Dirge needing a break from him. Something about needing to spend quality time with Dead End to put things in perspective. So he's moving through the siege lines, feet shuffling, optics downcast.
DreadTread keeps step behind Valour, looking for the obviously injured. She regards Dreadwind. "Have you come to support the troops or merely admire the suffering of the fallen?
Valour spots Dreadwind moving through the ranks towards him, and the Aerospace commander visibly deflates. Oh, no. The walking morale killer. Summoning all of his prodigious courage, Valour straightens his shoulders. He stifles both the physical pain from this injuries and impending psychic pain from dealing with Dreadwind. As he approaches the ominous air defender, Valour nods stiffly. "Good evening," he offers in passing.
Dreadwind falters in his steps, momentarily confused. He's not accustomed to people voluntarily addressing him, and it takes a moment to realize that DreadTread is actually talking to him. His head pivots up and over, "I suppose both. I was ordered out here, but apparently I'm..." He raises his hands to perform the air-quotes gesture, "'...too depressing' to continue patrolling with me. So... there's the suffering bit." His optics shift toward Valour, "It's really not, sir..."
DreadTread shakes her head. "I'd appreciate your keeping the 'bumming out' <airquotes> to a minimum. These troops are taking enough damage as it is."
Valour nods, agreeing with DreadTread. "I appreciate that positivity is alien to you, Dreadwind. However, if you cannot keep your negativity to yourself, you minimize your usefulness to us here in the field. And we need you active to help defend these troops," he gestures to the gathered Decepticons, "should the Autobots get their act together enough to launch an aerial response to our siege."
Dreadwind's optics focus upward, with minimal inclination of his head, "I thought I was being quite useful, but my patrol team apparently disagreed. Something about being in more misery than the Autobots on the ground..." He shakes his head, "Apart from the usual futility of life itself, I'm not really sure what makes it any worse for them..."
DreadTread says, "I'd inquire as to what your definition of 'useful' is...but I feel certain I would regret the answer."
"You're an asset to our aerial defence, Dreadwind," Valour says encouragingly. "You just need to stow the attitude when you're on duty. This war is hard on all of us. Your negativity only makes things worse." That's Valour's plan for improving Dreadwind's outlook -- lecture him about how he's bringing everyone down. "Our actions are not futile if they bring out the destruction of the Autobots. What we do will have direct impact on the future of our planet," Valour insists.
DreadTread does not have anything meaningful to add to Valour's pep talk and so just nods in agreement while looking around for someone...something...anything...to fix.
Dreadwind is crestfallen... You might think it weren't possible, but his shoulders actually sag lower, evidenced by the slight outward angle of the cylinders adorning them. "I really was trying, sir. I almost brought down a wall on some Autobots. But after another hour of flying, Dirge and Thundercracker said something about the bleakness of their meaningless flight paths... or maybe that's how I heard it... and began deliberately evasive maneuvers. Before long, I was up there alone... as usual... Even the Autobots had stopped shooting at me."
DreadTread offers, "I can shoot at you if that would make you feel better?"
Valour sighs, venting air through his chest vents. "It's OK, Dreadwind," he says, trying to sound chipper. He clasps the air defender on the upper arm. "I appreciate you trying. As I said, you're very effective in battle -- it's just the interteam interaction that needs to be worked upon. I thought teaming you up with Dirge would be a good match, but obviously that backfired. I'll find you a new team," he promises.
Dreadwind's optics flick down toward Valour's hand. If he could feel the touch, his first instinct would probably have been to move away from it. He's not used to people voluntarily touching him outside of open combat. While he doesn't make any outward motion, the discomfort is plain on his features. His mind races with all the various miseries that will accompany the inevitable abandonment of this next team, leaving him right back in the middle of his existential void... but instead he just says, "Thank you, sir."
DreadTread says, "Are you injured or in need of maintenance, Dreadwind?"
Valour senses his troop's discomfort with the attempt at reassurance, and quickly drops his hand, frowning at his inability to get through to Dreadwind's in any meaningful way -- if anything, he seems to be making the situation worse. At DreadTread's question, Val looks almost relieved -- maybe if something physical is wrong, it will at least be a distraction from the endless waves of existential ennui coming off Dreadwind.
Dreadwind turns to regard DreadTread, "Would there really be a-..." He was about to ask if there's a point to fixing any sort of damage, when his servos will eventually give out, his energon lines will dry up, and he'll be left a rusting hunk of scrap along the empty highway of life. However, for once, he thinks better of it, "Uhm... no, I'm undamaged..." He pauses for a moment, reaching a level of awkward silence reserved exclusively for Dreadwind, before adding, "...thank you."
DreadTread cocks her head, baffled. "I can scan you...it will just take a moment..."
Valour's optics narrow as he looks between DreadTread and Dreadwind, noticing the all new level of awkwardness between them. "Let the medic scan you," he interrupts to order Dreadwind. "You need to be in top physical shape to defend our troops," he continues, although from his stiff movements he's not exactly in top physical shape himself. Still, he's the Acting Air Commander without Starscream here, so he gets to be a hypocrite when necessary.
Dreadwind contemplates objecting, on the same basis of futility as his earlier internal struggle. But... an order is an order. He simply nods his head and raises his arms, "Very well." He just assumed that his arms needed to be raised out to the sides for this.
DreadTread takes out a scanner and moves it in the air over Dreadwind. BEEP! WRRRRRRRRH! BEEPBEEP! The scanner light goes green.
DreadTread says, "You check out...somehow."
Suddenly the ground trembles, and cracks in the ground open around the Decepticons. Light pours from the seams in the ground. Energy crackles across the plain. Valour's optics widen as his wings immediately shift to compensate and keep him upright, causing a bolt of agony to shoot through his still-healing body. Choking down the pain, Valour orders, "Head's up! This cyberquake might be some sort of Autobot attack!"
DreadTread immediately uses her jumpjets to take to the air, albeit at a very low altitude, hovering at perhaps 5 meters above the ground.
Dreadwind lifts an optic ridge at the green light, "Unsurprising... although I doubt it takes into account anything being wrong with existence in general..." The latter half of the statement is drowned out by the sudden quake. He looks down at the ground, passively watching the metal between his feet begin to split open. He gingerly kicks into the air, floating a bit higher than DreadTread. Air escapes around his faceplate in a deep sigh, "And sure enough, we're all doomed..."
DreadTread examines the fissures below and utters a Cybertronian obscenity. "I don't think the Autobots would choose this method of attack. They're not this subtle...are they?"
Valour activates his anti-gravs, and gives just enough boost from his boot jets to hover him just meters over the ground. He frowns, and charges his arm-mounted Seeker-lasers just in case. "It doesn't seem like the Autobots' style, but we can't be too careful. Stay alert --- I will see what I can find out." Leaving the two Decepticons behind, Valour takes off into the air -- remaining in robot mode, since he isn't sure he's able to transform yet.
Dreadwind watches the Acting Air Commander depart, remarking to anyone who has the constitution to listen to him, "Maybe they've been watching too much human television. I recall there was a film with insects who did something like this." He shakes his head, looking back toward DreadTread, "I wouldn't have expected an organic culture to be so... infectious."
DreadTread says, "It has its moments. I can do without most of what they call music...or politics."
Dreadwind physically shudders at the thought of that, "Like rival Insecticon colonies fighting for the right to claim a dying carcass..."
DreadTread says, "Somehow I don't think giant insects have managed to find passage from Earth in order to wreak havoc on Cybertron's outer crust. However...we should entertain the possibility that this phenomenon is caused by something other Autobot incompetence or natural forces."
Dreadwind quirks an optic ridge in DreadTread's direction, "If it were in fact the Autobots, they've likely fallen victim to their own ineptitude and the certainty of oblivion." His boots touch back down on the ground as the quake subsides, "It's likely the result of some nameless horror waiting to destroy us all out of some cosmically apathetic disregard for our existence."
DreadTread lands deftly on Cyberfirma. "Well then...perhaps we should start looking for answers...and give a name to the horror.