Cyclonus appears from the Cradle in Kolkular. His face and deep voice are calm and clear. “This is Cyclonus,” he identifies himself. “Trusted Decepticon and second in command of Decepticon Intelligence. I can confirm Nightshade’s statement – I travelled to the Hub’s command world myself and verified much of what is included in her report.
“Primus Pilus IS Megatron,” Cyclonus states flatly. “He made an alliance with an offshoot Decepticon faction, as is his right. In return, they gave him a new body, and troops to command. His command within their army does not dilute the fact that he is undisputedly the Emperor of this Decepticon Domain and had returned to lead us to final victory.
“Starscream, you have served as regent in Emperor Meg…
Snare stands outside one of the traditional Decepticon gladiatorial arenas. His neon red armour is damaged, but his voice sounds pleased as he gives his report. “Snare of the Predators reporting from Kaon. I took some detailed scans of the Toraxxis Mega-Refinery last cycle, gathering all the data we need should we decide to capture or destroy the Autobots’ primary source of energon on Cybertron.
“While there, I engaged with some Autobots. While easily defeated, they did show a bit of style, determination, and ingenuity, so I let them live. Maybe next time they’ll present more of a challenge. I also encountered the most fascinating femme.” He projects an image of Veritas Prime. “She scared me! I haven’t felt fear in a long, long ti…
Sideways’ seldom-seen dark visage appears in a low-lit recording made in an undisclosed location. Most have never heard him speak, and even now, filing a transmission, his voice is low and earnest. “Optimus Prime defeated. The Matrix lost. The Ceasefire broken. Cybertron in chaos.
“It is time for the reign of Primes to end. The Autobots need new direction, free from mystical guidance from some ancient artifact. Efficiency through self-sufficiency. A new generation of Autobots, following their own path. Join me for a new future, rather than endlessly repeat the past.”
The transmission ends, but a new, stylized Autobot logo replaces the old – yellow, outlined in red. Rejecting the brand the Quintessons used to distinguish their consume…
Ratchet appears in a location unknown to most Autobots. It’s a medical center, but not one in Iacon. The old medic looks tired, and he frowns as he makes his report. “Well, so much for the ceasefire,” he grumbles. “We received a report that someone was snoopin’ around the Toraxxis Mega-Refinery, and Hot Rod volunteered ta go check it out.
“He got ambushed by a Decepticon, calls himself ‘Snare.’ Dust Devil’ll know more. Trashed him badly. I brought him to Valvolux, because I didn’t want to risk travellin’ all th’ way back ta Iacon with injured. We’ll move him once he’s out of immediate medical danger. I’ll stay with him myself for now.”
Ratchet’s frown deepens. “If th’ Cons aren’t respectin’ the ceasefire,” he says, “We gotta be a lo…
“Hey. Did you hear what happened to Lt. Moore?”
“You know I try to keep my head down and out of officer politics. But, OK, What?”
“Found burned to death in his own quarters. HAD to be an inside job. And, from the method and skill used in the combustion, it had to be his own Shock-Vipers.”
“Jesus! Was he that unpopular? I guess I could see us Alley-Vipers doing that to Gristle, but not so much now that Barghest is in charge. He at least seems competent.”
“Well, all I can say is, sometimes being promoted isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I think I’ll take a page from your book and try to keep to the background.”
“Kept me alive this long....”