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Terror Underground
9/7/02

Terror Under Ground

valley

Dropping into this small valley from the surrounding mountains, the first thing that is noticeable is the lake in the deeper-most part of the valley basin, framed by huge pine trees. The lake is fed by a stream cascading down the mountainside in a waterfall and spills out through an underground cavern at the base of the valley. There is a small beach not far from where the stream splashes down into the lake, framed by a mixture of grass and pine needles before the first fringes of trees begin. The mountainside is formed by huge rocky crevasses, out-juttings, and overhangs. Hawks soar overhead, fish jump in the lake, birds sing merrily, and there are often the tracks of deer and other wildlife at the waters edge. The water is blue and crystal clear, and the air is clean and fresh. It looks like no one has ever touched this forgotten pocket of the world. Steps have been carved into the mountainside leading up to a cave. There is the splash of water from the waterfall and the whisper of wind through the pine and maple trees, which gives the area a very peaceful feel of home.


CatsCradle taps politely on the cottage door. "Ghost?"

Ghost pokes her head out of the cottage, looking sleepy, "Mhhh?"

CatsCradle shifts uncomfortably. "They want us back on Cybertron for a while..."

Ghost blinks once, peering more through cats than at her. A brow lifts as she slowly pulls her thoughts together, stepping out of the cottage and absently dusting at herself, a nervous habit.. "Any reason?" she asks softly.

CatsCradle hesitates and shakes her head. "I didn't ask. Didn't sound like an emergency, but also didn't sound like something I could back out of. I thought though..." she nods at the pile of energon that has been growing steadily over the week, "that as long as we're going, we could take that. It would put off the next trip that much longer."

Ghost nods once, reaching out to rest a hand on Cats shoulder, "Mer.." a touch of formality, "It.. shouldn't be as bad as it was before." Her head cocks to one side, a strange look of peace crossing her face for a moment before her brows furrow again, falling back into duty, "Yes.. We should take what we can for them.."

CatsCradle gives Ghost a tentative smile and heads towards the stacks of cubes.
****

War Room

        Dominating this room is a huge holographic display table, with chairs surrounding it. The display is suitable for projecting any number of video images or giant high resolution holographic maps. There are auxiliary display stations and computer consoles lining the walls, making this an ideal place to plan strategy and review intelligence.


Megatron walks into the WarRoom. Daily work - coordinating of work. "Any new reports from the mines? Will the loads from the Jupiter moons arrive on time?”

Soundwave goes to one of the computer stations to check on the latest progress reports. Cybertron remains in ruins, but a trickle of energy is coming in from Earth again, at least.

Chasm flaps down and peers over Soundwave's shoulder. "Hmm, nothing - as I suspected. Oh well."

Soundwave's fingers move easily over the controls. "Chasm," he says without looking up at the dragon. "Where have you been?" The question is almost casual.

Chasm twitches his tail. "Around. When giant /things/ try to devour the universe, I always say it's a good time to go on holiday..."

CatsCradle steps in, stopping just inside the door and edging to one side. She is still in her mismatched-armor, unpainted state. Obviously final repairs hasn't been a huge concern. She leans against the wall, unmoving except for her fingers tugging at each other nervously and the occasional flash of her optics as she glances around.

Ghost sidles in some moments after CatsCradle.

Skyraider stands by the wall, near the door, his armour shining from a recent touch-up. his expression is emotionless.

Soundwave hears a familiar set of footsteps come in also, and brings up a set of numbers on a small screen. Energon from Earth. He glances over at CatsCradle and nods to her approvingly. He's about to ask her for more news on the progress of Earth operations, when - as so often when he's trying to update the records, something else catches his attention. A coded message flashes across the screen, showing coordinates near Vos.  As he leans forward to zero in on the reading, he says, "I am pleased you are so brave in the defense of your homeworld, Chasm."

Chasm coughs slightly, "I could have been very involved behind the scenes, Soundwave, for all you know."

CatsCradle notices Soundwave's approval and her fingers slow in their twining. She remains tight against the wall however, rather than moving to her usual perch on top of any console.

<Cybertron> Soundwave says, "Soundwave to Tyrian and Valckasta. Are you detecting an unusual energy reading from the vicinity of Vos?"

<Cybertron> Ravenwing says, "Yes, Commander, we are."

<Cybertron> Soundwave says, "Receiving no response from Tyrian."

Ghost slides to a point against the wall on the opposite side of the door as CatsCradle, perhaps a bit more in a corner with spars resting flatly against her back.

Megatron tilts his head. "What is that about an energy reading?" He comes closer.

Soundwave glances aside at Chasm briefly. "Of course." He moves back a bit so Megatron can see. The screen indicates a power output centered on the area of the Vos plaza, an energy output akin to that of a small city, but wavering in intensity. He touches another control and a side-window pops up, showing the surface of Vos, a collapsed area where Unicron gouged his fingers into the ground. The damaged section has collapsed further on itself to expose a rift into the underground.  "No response from Tyrian, Commander." He leaves unspoken the various possibilities of what that could mean.

Megatron studies the incoming data, rubbing his chin. "An ancient energy warehouse? But the inconsistent output speaks against..." He looks at Soundwave. "No response? Try it again."

Soundwave sends a private message to Skyquake.

Soundwave listens a moment, then shakes his head. "Interference," he says. "Either they are aware of, or responsible for, this signal, or they are unable to respond for various reasons."

CatsCradle says softly, barely audible, "Could the energy be... blocking the signal?"

Soundwave says, "Possible." He looks to Megatron. "Suggest investigation, Commander.""

<Cybertron> Ravenwing says, "Shall we have a look?"

Megatron heavily leans on the console, grumbling something. Loudly, he says: "Looks we have to investigate that ourselves." And his voice indicates he means the present mechanisms.

Soundwave says, "Shall I inform Ravenwing to meet us on site?"

Megatron nods. "If there are some acid, energy sucking beings down there, she can play with them this time.

Soundwave looks to Megatron calmly. "The unknown always offers a potential opportunity, Commander."

<Cybertron> Soundwave says, "Affirmative, Ravenwing.  We will meet you on site."

Ghost remains one with her wall, optics flickering as she listens and obscures any dismay at the thought of going out on a group mission.. with.. others.

Skyraider glances at the Constructicon as Mixmaster walks in, but says nothing and returns t to his previous stance.

Megatron says, "Yes, Soundwave, but within the last several weeks I have had a few... unpleasant surprises too much."

Soundwave steps over near Ghost and CatsCradle, noting Ghost's discomfort but trying to offset it by acting the same as always. Just another strange energy reading to follow up on.  He inclines his head to Megatron. "I could always send Chasm to join Ravenwing's team."

Mixmaster shuffles in hastily. He looks wary as usual, but doesn't say anything yet. Megatron doesn't look like he much wants to be annoyed

CatsCradle's gaze remains focused on her fingers, almost on the verge of saying something like we-brought-energon-can-we-go-now... she glances quickly up at Soundwave as he steps closer, gives him a fleeting smile that comes no where near her optics and goes back to watching her fingers again.

Soundwave speaks, for those who know him, with an undertone of humor. He'd not send Chasm out all by himself until he knows more about where the little green dragon has been all this time, and he's quite sure Megatron would not do so either. Still, it's a momentarily intriguing thought.

Megatron smirks. "A wonderful idea, Soundwave." He looks around. "However, we will be there to investigate as well. It seems we just found a source of energy.

Soundwave stands aside from the door and waits to follow Megatron.

Megatron says, "Mixmaster, Ghost, CatsCradle, Skyraider, Soundwave will come with me. And Chasm will accompany Ravenwing. Let's go."

Chasm floats over Soundwave, "I suppose you'd get lost, so I'd better come with you." He seems -- glad to see Soundwave after his long absence? But then he shakes his head and he's just Chasm again, who only really loves Chasm.

Soundwave lets Chasm land on his shoulder.

Skyraider crosses his arms across his chest and starts staring at the ceiling, his thoughts a mystery to almost everyone in the room.

Mixmaster grins in his regular crazy way. He rubs his chin roughly, and a tiny chuckle may possibly be heard by Soundwave...

Ghost glances over at CatsCradle. a brow lifting before she pushes off of the wall, wing spars arching behind her to just sips below her knees. "Looks like we're going on a mission," she stats softly.

****


Hun-Grrr staggers up the path, a huge technorganic creature slung over his shoulder. "Hah!" he roars, "That was a good hunt, my brothers. Many victory chants will be sung about this day!"

Rippersnapper stumbles along behind Hun-Grrr. He snarls quietly, but he looks rather pleased.

Cutthroat walks a ways behind and to the left his comrades, smudged and wholly dirty. "Mm," is his only response, in a tone that sounds vaguely contented but a million miles away.

Hun-Grrr is splattered with ichor from the fight with the techno-organic monster. "I shall take this beast's fangs for my trophy," he says, even though his body already clatters with various trophies and bizarre ritual fetishes.

Rippersnapper eyes up the creature, but still says nothing. He looks down at himself, and quickly becomes upset at his own lack of trophies. Must be getting lazy these cycles...
Cutthroat stares down at the ground in front of him as he says, in a flat voice, "Because one can't have too many fangs tied to them, of course."

Hun-Grrr finishes staggering up the path and dumps the beast on the ground. He roars a bestial yell and thumps his huge halberd on the ground. "Come warriors! The beast is caught!" Eventually, a small number of transformers emerge from the shadows and slither or flap over to where Hun-Grrr stands. Most of them have alternate modes that resemble bizarre monsters and creatures whose origin was lost in the mists of Cybertronian history. One creature lunges forward, rattling a strange mystical staff (actually a broken power converter). This is the tribal shaman, Stonebreak!

Stonebreak howls, "Oh great warriors of Angselik, the great kingdom of the Terrors, the omens have been bad once more! The earth has shaken and in one part of the world, the sky has opened up!"

Cutthroat listens with arms folded from his position at the buttock of the group.

Hun-Grrr transforms into its 2-Headed Hydra mode and starts to chew at the beast, only half-listening the shaman's gibbering. "What nonsense is this?" He demands through his right-hand head while the left-hand one guzzles at the techno-organic's hide. "The sky does not open up!"

Rippersnapper stops behind and to the right of Hun-Grrr. He stares at Stonebreak with some confusion, but isn't unnerved enough to ask about this event himself. He glances over at the TransOrg, but waits. Not too hungry just now.

Stonebreak rattles the mystical power converter again, "Great One, Lord of all Angselik, Khan of Khans - believe me when I tell you that the sky has opened! A great rift into nothingness, the likes of which have not been seen before!"

Hun-Grrr's only answer is a muffled *ghrrph* as both of his heads tear into the beast.

Rippersnapper scoffs at the mystical prattle. He steps forward, doing his best to dwarf Stonebreak. "Where has the sky opened?" He points up with an open palm, and grins smugly. "The sky here is closed."

Stonebreak rattles his stick again. "O Mighty Hunter, I can take you to the Edges of the World, where you can see the Great Wound in the sky for yourself!"

Rippersnapper maintains his disbelief. Still, his enhanced interest can be measured by the sudden glow in his optics. He folds his arms over his chest and looks to Hun-Grrr for his feelings.

Cutthroat stares at Stonebreak skeptically. Unfolding his arms within moments of Rippersnapper folding his, he states, "Shall we indulge the foolish seer?"

Hun-Grrr finishes ripping the techno-organic creature apart. Both of his heads focus on the shaman with their red, glowing eyes, ichor tripping from their metallic fangs. "Shaman of the Clan of Terror - you shall lead us to this Wound in the Sky. I shall go there with my bravest warriors! Who is with me on this matter?! Who is brave enough to venture Beyond the Edge of the World?" Hun-Grrr looks around the tribal gathering. Most of the monstrous transformers edge back away from their overlord. For how can there be anything behind the sky itself?

Rippersnapper raises the stick in his hand high above his head and proclaims, "I am!" Really, it seems like he just wants to yell something more than anything.

Cutthroat walks up to stand alongside Hun-Grrr, grinning. "The sky is my domain -- I fear nothing in it. Nothing."

Hun-Grrr shakes a fist, "Cowards! Does no one else step forward to come with me to see the Edge of the World? Who knows what strange gods and demons there are! Think of the glorious battles we could have!"

From the crowd, a female clad entirely in dented and scratched black -- save for red runes painted in odd patterns -- steps forward, her eyes alit with crimson resolve. She flexes her fingers, their tips sharpened into horrid spikes, as she moves to stand with Hun-Grrr. Macabre, the Hunter whose origins are a mystery to the entire clan, herself included.

Hun-Grrr says, "You, Macabre - because you have stepped forward - you are now a Great Hunter, exalted over the other lowly curs who call themselves hunters, who are not brave to accompany Khan Hun-Grrr to the Edge of the World!" Several of the other tribals snarl at this great honour, but no more step forward.

Rippersnapper sees Macabre step forward next to him. For a moment, he ponders what it would be like to destroy her. But it ends quickly, and he returns to respecting her warrior's courage.

If Macabre is pleased at this honour, she hides it. She has not been known to emote much, if at all. After a long pause, her disarmingly soft rasp addresses Hun-Grrr, "...thank you, Khan..."

Blot and Sinnertwin shuffle forward, to stand beside Hun-Grrr. Only they can help their leader summon the Great Warrior Spirit Abominus.

Cutthroat brushes his nose with his thumb. "Ugh. Blot... please... stand over there."

Blot obediently stumbles to one side. The stench is overwhelming.

Hun-Grrr looks at Macabre. "You are a Great Hunter now. You have tasted the blood of the enemy -" he points to the dismembered trans-organic lying around. "You will now speak with pride, knowing that you are a Great Hunter!" He turns back to the rest of the Terrors, "Come warriors - let us go forth and see the Edge of the World with our own eyes!"

Cutthroat idly notes that when this is over, he's going to petition the Khan to see if Blot could be made to bathe.

Hun-Grrr roars and stamps his halberd against the ground, screaming a mighty war cry. He then charges up the slope and leads his Terrors on to victory or death. It's all the same to him, really.

Cutthroat transforms into his Monster Pterosaur mode and swoops after his leader, just behind him.

Rippersnapper raises his weapon in a cheer again, but the cowards do not join in. He glares at the crowd once more before turning and running off after Hun-Grrr.

Macabre joins in the war cry, even though her voice is ill-fit for it. She charges after her leader and comrades.

****

Undercavern

     This 'cavern' is right down in the guts of the former waste-processing plant. Huge corroded pipes arch overhead and valves and shutgates are rusted into the walls. The floor is a stained mesh grille over a cauldron of chemical waste. Spraypainted sigils are plastered over the walls. The floor is littered with broken pieces of scrap. A gaping entrance in the floor to the west leads down into the tangled hollows of the pipe system. A great crack runs through the roof this chamber, revealing a glimpse of Cybertron's sky.

Hun-Grrr points upwards in amazement. "The words of the shaman were true. There is a great hole in the sky!" Sure enough, there is a gaping rift in the 'sky' that just goes up and up. This is a bit of a shock for a tribe who thought that their underground kingdom was everything...
Rippersnapper runs along after Hun-Grrr, but slows and finally stops as he spots the great gap above. He stares blankly up, not bright enough to know /what/ to make of this. For him, it's world-shattering.

Cutthroat almost falls out of the sky as, in his amazement, he neglects to maintain the rhythm of flapping his wings. He is singularly awe-struck. "...my... my domain..." he whispers.

Hun-Grrr stares with disbelief. 'It does not end! It does not make sense!"

Macabre is struck dumb by this revelation. "... ... ... ... ..."

Blot is the only Terror who seems unamazed by the sky. But then again, perhaps he's too dumb for it to concern him.

Cutthroat flies up and approaches the rift, but does keep some level of caution. "This is not right. This is not -right.- Khan, where could this have -come- from--?!"

Hun-Grrr shakes his head, "I am not sure. What does this mean? What are the spirits telling us? If only that accursed shaman had come, he could have enlightened us about the situation.

A flying green dragon, a typical sight to the Clan of Terror, suddenly appears in the sky. It actually descends through the rift and starts to look around rather carefully.

Hun-Grrr lunges forward. With the true speed of a warrior, he raises his halberd.

The creature seems to vanish immediately.

Hun-Grrr turns to his men, "The creature has gone!"

Cutthroat staggers back for a moment from the sudden shock of it, but from his point at the rift's mouth he's in the best position to try and intercept it. It vanishes as soon as he can fly to where he was, though. "...could it be a passage to... beyond?" He speaks of the afterlife, of course.

Hun-Grrr hesitates, "What can it lead to? Is there... another world above us?" His brains hurt.

Macabre is still silent. Her brains hurt even more, because there's something vaguely alluring about this hole in the sky, contrary to every ounce of sense in her head. "...rrrr."

Cutthroat remains in the air. "...I think there's only one way to find out."
Cutthroat says, "Come, Blot, adventures await you."

Hun-Grrr nods, "Come, warriors - let us go forth and see this other world for ourselves!"

Blot says, "Me go."

****

Central Plaza <Vos>

     Entering the main plaza of Vos, it's apparent that the roof of the former processing plant has been gouged open, its contents exposed to the bleak sky. For as far as you can see, there are rusted hulks of machinery and silent assembly lines that would have once criss-crossed each other in a complex pattern. Chemical pools gleam amid the rust here and there, and gaping chasms in the ground reveal the underlayers. Strange sigils have been spray-painted on segments of the ruined walls. One particular chasm near the far wall looks to be well used.


Megatron arrives with a group of his troops.


Ravenwing is leaning against an outpost, staring thoughtfully at the mysterious Rift of Doom and those nice energy readings.

Nightracer nods slowly "Perhaps a bit too much for an energon cache. Perhaps an experimental lab?" She looks intently down into the blackness "bit too dark to see if any Bots move down there. And those energy readings mask out life signs.

Ghost does her best to bring up the rear of Megatron’s collected troops.

Soundwave keeps a surreptitious optic on a few members of the group, strategically placing himself nearby Ghost and Cats still, with Chasm on his shoulder. But as they come to the torn-open ground in Vos, he draws his hand-held scanner and takes another reading - which does not tell him anything he did not already detect from Trypticon's War Room.

Skyraider stands at full height with his arms folded across his chest. he seems t be awfully quiet today.

Megatron lands and walks over to Ravenwing. "Have you found out anything yet, Ravenwing?"

Ravenwing straightens up as the illustrious Emperor arrives and shrugs. "No more than we picked up on long-range scanner, Megatron. Energy readings, as we've all noted."

Gryphus’ hippogriff form flies a lazy circle above the group. Gliding on the thermals and giving no indication of joining them.

CatsCradle stays on the out-fringe of the group, near Ghost, but the rift draws out her curiosity, and she peers in it, fingering a small chunk of rubble thoughtfully.

Nightracer silently makes room for the emperor, staying unobtrusively close to Ravenwing. Almost acting like a bodyguard if such a notion was not ridiculous

Soundwave says, "Readings are fluctuating, as though the energy source were unstable, or even..." he regards his screen for a moment... "beginning to fade slightly.""

Megatron nods. "Send Chasm to investigate, Soundwave.

Chasm flaps over to Ravenwing, "Say, could we arrange for more Valckastan delicacies to be shipped to Earth? I'd love to arrange a deal where we get the choice energon mixes..." He pauses, "Er, what did you say, Megatron? That wasn't a reconnaissance mission, was it?"

Megatron says, "It was, Chasm. Go!"

Chasm gulps and edges towards the rift. He looks pleadingly back at Soundwave and then at Megatron's cannon (it's a long story, but Megatron has discovered that the art of cannon-pointing is always a good motivator for Chasm) and then reluctantly dives into the rift.

Skyraider starts staring down the rift, face expressionless yet again.

With the roar of powerful VTOL engines and forceful turbines accompanying them, Thrust makes his debut onto the crow of Decepticons. Dropping speed suddenly he hovers down and with a rev shuts off his engines and Transforms to land in robot mode.

CatsCradle chews on her lip, then glances to Soundwave. "Fading as in growing weaker, or fading as in moving away?" she asks, still very softly, without drawing any attention to herself, but figuring Soundwave would hear her.

Soundwave takes a half-step forward as well, as though ready to go with Chasm, but stops himself. "Remaining in place," he clarifies, "but perhaps growing weaker. Something below the surface that may have been damaged by the planetary assault."

Thrust looks around looking cocky, "We will find what it is don’t worry

Gryphus wends her way slowly lower in slow, lazy circles until finally she comes to a landing about 50 yards from the group.

Megatron glances at Ravenwing. "If there are energy sucking flying Venusians, Ravenwing, you can play with them this time," he remarks with a grin.

Ravenwing gives the Emperor a mildly surprised look. "If they are there, then they are energy-sucking flying Cyber-Mantas instead."

Nightracer spots movement in the darkness and brings her rifle to bear on it

Chasm flaps out of the rift, "Monsters! Monsters!"

Gryphus walks slowly towards the group, her hooves clopping and her claws clicking upon the steel surface of Cybertron. She folds her wings over her back and gives her tail a swish.

Megatron frowns. "What are you whining about, Chasm. What monsters? Or have you just found a mirror down there?

Ghost pads closer to CatsCradle, dropping to a knee and idly sifting some rubble with taloned fingertips. At Chasm’s eruption from the rift, she goes motionless, watching and listening with an air of discontent.

Soundwave sends out a reassuring sense to Chasm, or would if he can telepathically get through to him at all. "Calm yourself and explain, Chasm."

Chasm waves his paws around in the air, his tail lashing furiously like a terrified cat. "I went down into the rift for a way, and then I saw them! Words cannot describe them..." his voice trails off.

Ravenwing keeps her optics fixed on the darkness that is the rift, watching for any hints of movements. While she doesn't expect any "monsters", there's *something* down there. Mayhaps the dragon encountered a Transorganic and became frightened.

Skyraider walks to the edge and peers down the rift, trying to see these 'monsters' Chasm claims to have seen.

Something is coming *up* out of the rift.

Nightracer reluctantly turns her attention from the assorted Decepticons and stares down into the darkness of the rift, trying to see any movement
Gryphus calmly walks up to the rift and lowers her head, she inhales deeply and then cocks her head. Her neck and wing feathers ruffle. She makes a soft cooing sound and flicks her ears forward, as if listening.

Skyraider raises his arm laser, tracking the new arrival while saying, "Something’s coming"

Suddenly, a whole band of primitive Transformers crawl out of the rift, bearing strange weapons. They're a bizarre sight: covered in strange parts like trophies, transorganic fangs surround their necks and ritual markings have been scratched into their armour plate.

Skyraider steps back into a combat stance, preparing for the worst

Soundwave too draws his plasma rifle, as a precaution. Not usually one to leap for his weaponry, but Megatron is correct about this much - there have been far too many unpleasant surprises of late.

Nightracer steps back into the shadow of a nearby building.

Megatron gives his troops a sign to ready their weapons.

Ravenwing seems completely relaxed, but a subtle tension indicates that she's also ready for anything that may occur. She glances quickly around, marking everyone's position should it come to an attack.

The largest of these primitives steps forward and stares in amazement at the surrounding Decepticons, "Aha! Sky demons! Creatures who live behind the Great Wound in the Sky!" He steps forward, "Know that I am Khan Hun-Grrr, lord of the Clan of Terror, and that I have come to do battle!" He shakes his halberd threateningly.

Chasm grips Soundwave's ankle tightly. "See?" he manages.

Gryphus’ wings spread wide as she rears up and away from the rift, issuing a hiss that gives way to a panicked neigh. She backs away from the rift, still on her rear legs.

Skyraider raises his arm lasers, both pointed at Hun-Gr.

Those who observe closely may see a familiar face, albeit a familiar face whose body has been covered in red runes and who clutches a shield and sharp, curved dagger, stance like that of a born warrior's.

CatsCradle remains very still, crouching next to the rift, the only motion slight flickers of her optics. She makes no move to draw a weapon... then again, her claws are still quite satisfactory in that role. The appearance of the Transformers does not seem to phase her... she herself isn't exactly looking like the most stylish of Transformers these days, and certainly there was a time when she looked worse than these.

Hun-Grrr gestures at his warriors, "These are my finest hunters and warriors!" He points to each one. "Rippersnapper!" A strange shark-like creature lumbers forward.

"Blot!" A foul stench erupts from this transformer, and it's oozing some kind of goop. Definitely the most disgusting transformer that most of you have seen.

"Sinnertwin!" A yellow mech stands there, twirling a huge sword. "Cutthroat and Macabre!" Hun-Grr finishes, indicating the rest of his band of warriors.

CatsCradle's optics flicker again at the naming, going to the one with the red runes thoughtfully. Her good luck charm? Well, in any case, she doesn't seem to want to be remembered... and Cats knows all about that type of feeling. She still remains crouched next to the rift, tense and ready to flow into movement.

Megatron steps closer to Hun-Grr, not aiming, but presenting his cannon clearly to the other. "I am Megatron, leader of the Decepticons, ruler of this world.”

Hun-Grrr points his halberd at Megatron. "I am the lord of the lands, the Caverns of Angselik. Until today, I had thought that was all the world!"

Megatron gestures at the world around. "The world is more, Hun-Grr, despite it was shattered badly in a major battle. But we will rebuilt it.

Cutthroat flaps above the heads of the others. He seems to have a preference for beaded necklaces. Wait. Those aren't beads. Those are transorganics' eyes.

Ghost slides a foot closer to CatsCradle, optics darkening as she watches the sudden movement of those exiting the wound in the planet itself. No weapons are drawn, no sudden movements just an air of readiness.

Nightracer simply looks at the primitive Decepticons, neither scared nor disgusted, just vaguely amused

Soundwave looks over the group that arose out of the rift, his gaze lingering for a moment on the more familiar form. Though he has his weapon at ready, he does not raise it into firing position as long as the presumed leader of the group is still talking and making no move to attack Megatron.

Gryphus backs away some ten yards on her rear legs, attempting to look the part of being at least threatening. When her avian forelegs find the ground, her feathers stand at attention and her wings are placed in such a way as to make her look bigger. She issues another low hiss.

Ravenwing shakes her head at the glorified scavengers with delusions of grandeur. She doesn't relax her guard, though, and any savage who "comes to do battle" with her will find he's made a grave mistake.

Chasm realizes that that these are just band of idiot transformers and nothing to be scared of. He sighs and composes himself, flapping up to Soundwave's shoulder, "Hun-Grrr was it?" (Stupid name, he thinks), "See this shiny thing? I can get you many more glass beads and mirrors..."

Hun-Grrr stares at the green flapping creature, "Scavenger-lizard, know that Khan Hun-Grrr only takes what he can defeat in battle." He looks at Megatron. "A major battle? This must be a might tale indeed! Come, Lord of Upper Earth - descend into my realm and the Khan of all Angselik will feast you tonight! There shall be chants of war and much merriment!  I would indeed like to hear of the ways of Upper Earth."

Gryphus’ avian gaze takes in the runes. If she was mentally with it, she'd probably ramble on about the meaning of them. But luckily for all of you, she's probably just as primitive as this motley group. She keeps herself looking large and threatening as she watches them dubiously.

Macabre glares out at all the 'new' faces suspiciously. Distrust is written all over her face, as her position, one ready to tear her dagger or the sharp edge of her shield into anything at a moment's notice, does not relax.

Ruse suddenly steps out of a shadow near Macabre and makes a low hissing sound... hoping to startle her a bit since she seems so jumpy. She has probably been following this little monstercon expedition all along but remained toward the back... waiting to frighten someone.

Megatron smirks. "An invitation, Hun-Grrr? Excellent. We accept." However, he gives Soundwave a secret sign to keep his sensors on alert.

Soundwave watches Hun-Grrr with interest, reading his body language and tone of voice, as to ascertain whether they're walking into a trap or not.  He gives Megatron a fractional nod. So far so good.

Hun-Grrr raises his halberd, "Come then, Warriors of Upper Earth. Let me show you the mighty realm of Angselik!"

The rest of the primitive warriors raise their weapons. Blot tries to sniff at someone but Rippersnapper manages to drag him back to follow Hun-Grrr.

Skyraider lowers his lasers and relaxes, realizing that for now the savages are friends, or close enough

Hun-Grrr leaps into the rift without a moment's thought.

Megatron also gives Ghost a sign to be ready to react if necessary.

Ghost's optics flicker violet as she nods at Megatron once, standing straight as if reforming from pools of random shadow.

Nightracer glances at Ravenwing, trying to figure out what she thinks of this situation

Thrust watches and isn’t too sure about leaping down into something underground

Gryphus issues a questioning coo and then moves to follow the group. Wow, she's participating!

Ravenwing ponders the delights of a meal with barbarians who make Colossus look like the most genteel of mechs.

Macabre peers at Ruse quizzically before growling in return, a low guttural sound that does a marvelous job of indicating that she's not in the mood. She and Cutthroat then follow Hun-Grrr.

Megatron follows Hung-Grrr. "Chasm, you'll come with me."

Chasm gulps and stays close to Soundwave.

CatsCradle shrugs slightly. Well, if the whole party's going... she slips down into the darkness after the others.

Ruse watches Macabre and hmmphs before pouncing downward after the group. She soon is walking beside Cats, keeping close to her for the moment since she isn't totally sure what’s happening.

CatsCradle glances over at Ruse with another of those fleeting-smiles, then looks away again, over-concentrating on each footstep.

Skyraider follows the others into the great unknown of the rift

Ravenwing spares the time to speak briefly with the ranking Tyrian officer present, letting him know what's going on and to make sure that they're back in a reasonable amount of time.

Nightracer steps out of the shadows she's been hiding in and mutters "amazing. Must have been sealed in for millions of years"


****

Angselik

Before you stretches a primitive kingdom of endless caverns and rifts that goes right down into the very depths of Cybertron. Strange slitherings can be heard in the depths as trans-organics crawl through the broken layers of the factory planet. This world is inhabited by strange, primitive transformers who spend their days battling the trans-organics and their nights drinking and celebrating their warrior prowess.


Hun-Grrr leads the Decepticons through endless caverns into a vast underground kingdom, composed of layers carved into the side of a massive cliff. A huge rift cuts through the area. As they enter, strange, monstrous transformers with bizarre forms and glowing optics hiss and snarl in the shadows. Strange things scuttle in the darkness.

Ghost remains as near to CatsCradle as she can, frame seeming to lose any luster as she tenses, each movement almost brittle and held back.

Gryphus follows about 10 yards behind the last person entering the rift, she tucks her wings tight against her as she sniffs at the air and gazes around, her ears pivot as she listens to the sounds about her.

Nightracer takes a few moments to adjust her optics to the dim lighting conditions of these caverns. She returns her rifle to her back holster, but keeps her handgun readied

Hun-Grrr stops and bellows, "Warriors of Angselik - we have guests! Prepare a feast. Tonight the lords of the Land Beyond the Sky join us!"

Several of the monstrous transformers scuttle forward, hissing at each other with trepidation.

Ravenwing is very, very familiar with the underground, though not this particular section. Her steps lighten even more, almost subconsciously, and she's moving more like a stalking predator than an officer. Transorganics...? Lovely, lovely energon from those, the best she's ever tasted.

Macabre rolls her head, trying to work out the grave sense of unease she feels about this. Her grip on her dagger is so tight that the tips of her fingers, sharpened into long, horrid spikes, are almost piercing the edge of her palm.

Ruse hmms murmuring to Ghost and Cats quietly, "This is better then those human horror movies!" She stalks forward towards one of the monstercons, sniffing the air quietly and seeming unafraid of the whole situation of strange robots all around them with bizzaire shapes. With her somewhat alien altmode she feels quite.. comfortable here.

Nightracer, too has done her fair share of dungeon crawling but never this deep nor in this part of Cybertron. The worst she has been hunting is Autobots

Hun-Grrr roars again, and some of the reptilian transformers leap forwards, dragging the huge carcass of the transorganic that Hun-Grrr strangled this morning forward. They sit in a rough circle and then Sinnertwin snarls and breathes, starting a huge fire that roars into the sky, causing weird shadows to flicker around the encampment.

Stonebreak, the tribal shaman, scuttles forward, "Khan Hun-Grr - how do we know that these are not sky demons?! Allow me to cast the Ritual of Welcoming on them!" Hun-Grrr nods and seats himself on a pile of broken transorganic bones, while the strange crab-like transformer mumbles something, waves a broken power-converter at the Decepticons and howls like a stricken beast.

Ruse watches the crab... and chuckles, "I am surprised I am not made a skygod again."

Soundwave looks around in great interest, though most of his attention is unobtrusively on Hun-Grrr, as well as on the tensely coiled femme who lingers near him.

Megatron looks around. "Impressing, Hung-Grrr." He gives an relaxed, inattentive impression. But that is deceitful - he is veeery attentive.

Ghost's optics flicker here and there, looking the cavern over itself as she sidles away from CatsCradle, slowly moving herself into a flanking position in order to be better able to cover those higher in command should something untoward occur. Her spars shift behind her as she moves silently.

Soundwave regards the cooking TransOrg curiously. Tempest would have eaten such a thing without hesitation, of that he is certain.

Eventually, the bizarre ritual finishes. Hun-Grrr snarls and the shaman crawls away. Hun-Grrr plunges his halberd into the trans-organic and cuts of a dripping piece of the creature and proffers it to Megatron. All of the primitive transformers seem to hold their breath.

Soundwave looks to Megatron and tries to catch his leader's attention for a moment. He nods to Megatron, as though in encouragement.

Megatron takes the piece of the transorganic, starting to eat it. He has eaten worse in his life, especially after escaping from Perihellia.

Gryphus watches the activity with dull optics, any primitive that comes near her she issues a threatening hiss and ruffles her feathers back up.

Cutthroat transforms and lands on one knee, looking around. He calls out a few names sharply but unobtrusively, getting up and hustling over to them. "Music! Music!" he says, "A feast must have -music.-" And thus, the music begins, odd percussive songs since modern instruments are not a convention of this society.

Ravenwing keeps her back to a wall once they stop and stares around in fascination. The creatures of legend, mayhap, and she suspects that her lord would find this interesting indeed.

Nightracer glances coolly at the shaman as he waves his stick over her and equally coolly amused at Megatron being offered that type of energon.

A tape reel moves silently in Soundwave's chest compartment. Yes, he's actually recording that music.

Ruse watches this primitive display and just idly swishes her tail to the beat as she paws around unnoticed for the most part. She slips quietly near Macabre again keeping a close optic on her from a shadow...

Resyke has once more followed the larger Decepticons into a situation that's just plain odd. Almost unnoticed amongst the crowd, the little cleaner looks around at the spectacle with wide optics.

Gryphus flicks an ear toward the music as she swishes her tail to the beat, slowly a avian foot taps in time.

Macabre glances around, then watches Megatron to see if he cares to disrespect their little jungle culture.

Nightracer mutters 'I wonder if ... ... ... ... ... about this ... '.

Ghost's attention is less son the little drama and more on looking for exits and making a head count.

Ravenwing shakes her head slightly at what was offered. Disgusting compared to the ambrosia that is their energon. "One learns to take what one can get. I've subsisted on rat energon before."

The shaman places something on his head that says 'Emergency Flotation Device'. "I am not sure whether they are the Lords of Upper Earth or the legendary sky demons," he says reluctantly, but they have not attacked us..."

Hun-Grrr throws a bone at the shaman, "Out of the way - the Lord of the Upper Earth has eaten our food and therefore he will be made welcome!"

The primitive transformers cheer and start shuffling around in a bizarre sort of victory dance.

Blot tries to sniff CatsCradle. A terrible stench emanates from him.

CatsCradle holds her hand out to Blot, palm up and empty, no smile, expression neutral... or maybe sad, remembrance.. The smell doesn't seem to bother her, or maybe she has smelled or lived in oders almost as bad. At Megatron's move, she slips closer to the circle around the feast, crouching just outside of the tribe's main influence. "Your pack eats well," she says in a soft but clear voice. "My pack was never as fortunate."

Blot looks at CatsCradle. She's not throwing stuff at him? She's not yelling at him to get away? She's not telling him that he stinks? A dreamy look settles into his optics and he shyly offers CatsCradle something that looks (and smells) like a dead turbo-pigeon. It's got a chain on it so it can be worn.  

CatsCradle does smile, then, the first real smile since returning to Cybertron. She takes the 'necklace' with a gracious bow of her head and slips it around her neck. She tilts her head, thinking for a brief moment, then brings from subspace a glittering clear quartz rock she found in the mountains of her Earth home and holds it out to Blot.

Blot shyly takes the crystal from CatsCradle. He holds it up, so that it glitters in the fire, look beautiful and mysterious. And then he eats it.

Ruse stares at Megatron and looks as if she is going to be sick. She has never had anything but energon in her existence and while she can come to grips with Tempest maybe carving open and drinking energon from another... actually eating something part organic.. She in her revulsion loses track of Macabre.

Macabre begins to slowly and subtly move away from the Decepticon department, into the crowd of her own people. Those in the way of the newly-appointed Great Warrior quickly and respectfully move out of it.


Gryphus’ feet seems to move of their own volition as her unconscious mind brings up dance steps learned not long ago. It's kind of odd watching her take those tentative dance steps in this form. But she at least seems to be enjoying herself.

Nightracer finds herself a place to sit, well out of the way of the 'festivities'

All of the Angselik warriors begin to tear into the transorganic corpse, getting as much as their clan status indicates. Macabre gets a large share, befitting her new status.

Resyke is a little disturbed by how messy the place is.. but that's about it. At least these guys can hold a conversation (kinda), unlike the insecticlones.

Skyraider stares at the savages devouring the corpse in pure disgust.

Cutthroat growls at one of the musicians. "Wrong," he hisses, "Wrong, wrong, wrong. I taught you how to play this myself -- and you're making me regret every last moment of it. Give-me-those." Snatching away the percussive sticks, he begins to play along with the musicians himself, hammering soulfully on the hollowed backbone of a transorganic as well as homemade drums with skins crafted from their hides.

The ousted musician hears the strange melody that started when Cutthroat began playing. "...I -was- playing it wrong," he sighs.

Nightracer smiles a little wryly at the scene and remembers the millennia of famine when she had to subsist on worse than transorganics

Megatron says, "You have lived down here in this cavern with your people all the time, Hung-Grr?"

Hun-Grrr gets to his feet and kicks at the fire, so a dramatic shower of sparks rises into the air, "This is the lore of our tribe, the lore of Angselik! Years ago, in the time before time, the sky demons ruled the land. We battled them and destroyed them and came to rule all Angselik. But the sky-demons, who fell into the pit, want to crawl out to return to the sky. We battle them and to this day we defy them!"

Soundwave remains in the center of things, taking it all in with interest. To the primitive music he now adds a counterpoint melody from his own files, just to see what effect it will have. He's long been aware of how certain notes and combinations of notes can influence mood, and he's chosen this particular sequence as something that should promote a sense of trust and relaxation.

Gryphus’ eyes close as the tentative steps move slowly into more bold steps. Hooves clomping hard against the steel ground, adding a bit of percussion to what exists already.

Ghost moves around like a thief in the night until she finds a place where she can stop and crouch, spars draping behind her as she goes motionless, watching the ongoings with all the attentiveness of an assassin.

Resyke absentmindedly picks up a scrap of Transorganic that was flung from the feeding frenzy and landed by his feet, looking at it for a moment before popping it in his mouth and chewing thoughtfully. "Not bad.."

Ruse just hangs back away from the creature and watching the others eat with the look of someone watching a car accident. She shakes out of it soon though and looks to Hun-Grrr somewhat disturbed. She makes her way over to Soundwave quietly and speaks to him softly, "Skydemons.. the only upper worlders to have the rule of the sky are...." She makes a quick glance to Megatron then Skyraider.... the Decepticon fit the description far better then she wants the other monstercons to know.

The old shaman, Stonebreak adds, "It said that much of our tribal lore is held in the Wailing Room, but the spirits there are angry with us, for we have forgotten how to honour them properly, and they slay any warrior who approaches them."

Macabre eats ravenously, without any of the grace or manners that one who recognizes her might have expected. She is silent except for the scarfing and chomping sounds.

Soundwave nods thoughtfully to Ruse. "I will be interested to learn more about these 'sky demons,'" he says.

Ravenwing gains a new appreciation for the Diplomatic Corps, who went through this type of "diplomatic" function on a regular basis. Would she have the patience herself? Only if absolutely necessary, so she's perfectly content to let Megatron devour the offering. She wonders now if they'll have contests of strength to try to impress the visitors.

Blot coughs slightly, venting some of his internal gases.

Megatron rubs his chin. "Sky demons? Angry Spirits? Tell me more about that. Maybe we can help you to deal with that angry spirits.

CatsCradle lets out a soft laugh, not an unkind one, but certainly the first real amusement she has shown on this planet in quite some time. Keeping part of her attention on the history lesson, she points towards the meal with a questioning look. "May I? I have nothing more to contribute, but..." her voice trails off, the words having the feel of some formality to them, almost as if they were a ritual greeting, although not one widely recognized.

Hun-Grrr snaps at the shaman, "Enough of that. Tell me, Megatron - what was this great battle you fought? What could rend your kingdom asunder?"

Thrust smirks to himself on the sky demon remark...that could fit any one of the seekers on a bad day

Soundwave tilts his head a bit, and regards the shaman. "You have a storage place for your tribe's history and records?" he asks, trying to engage the old robot in conversation while Megatron addresses the underworld leader.

Gryphus continues her dance steps, seemingly content to do so until the musicians stop.

Ruse side-glances to Resyke, "I can't believe you just did that." She shudders her frame before nodding up at Soundwave noting Megatron’s interest, "Looks like we will find out."

Resyke looks at Ruse. "Why not, miss?" he answers, surprised. "I'm an Insecticon. We eat anything."

Ruse murmurs, "I believe it now.", to the bug before looking to Hun-Grr. She finally bothers looking the strange beast over carefully while noting the others losing themselves to the culture. Despite her parentage she isn't about to start snarffing up transorg remains though.

Ghost eyes the rapidly disappearing carcass, debating manners verses a slight upcharge from her flight here.

Hun-Grrr snarls, "I would hear of your battle first!" His optics burn in the firelight.

Megatron smirks. "The god of chaos tried to devour our world. It was a terrible battle, but our tribe defeated him. His head became the new moon."

Soundwave slowly lets his music fade out, and strikes up something more dark and dramatic, a soft, subtle sound in the background as an accompaniment to the tale of Unicron's attack.

A strange crab-like mech chitters something unintelligible at Resyke.

Resyke stares at the crab thing. "Uh.. hello."

Nightracer grins a little "the king of all sky demons..."

Thrust still has not taken any of the 'food' offered nor does he dance. Instead he is in his typical guard stance and watching what everyone is doing and watching the strangers cautiously

One of the underworld creatures bumps up against Thrust and offers him a dripping piece of transorg carcass.

Thrust steps back to regain his balance and looks down at the creature, " Know that you bumped into Thrust one of the Seeker elite creature...watch where I’m going..." he pauses and looks at the dripping piece of thing. "Why are you showing me this?"

Soundwave's accompaniment does add a touch of gravity, but the band continues to play powerfully and jubilantly, Cutthroat in particular looking like he's about three hits away from shattering that backbone-xylophone, he's striking it so hard.

CatsCradle, when one of the primitives nods to her in encouragement (after all, she did give the quartz... not her fault one of 'em ate it, she made the offering), leans forward, clawing off a chunk of the carcass. She sits back comfortably to eat it. With her mismatched, paintless, and unrepaired armor, along with her comfortable stance, she looks more as if she belongs here, than having come down the rift from above.

Hun-Grrr looks worried. He hasn't really gotten anything to match defeating the god of chaos or the father of all sky demons. "In my best tale, I wrestled with the great dweller of the depths. Much time passed before I had crushed the life from his body. He was the greatest of all the worms that slither below, but his spawn still crawl through the core. They say there is a glowing room there that holds all the secrets of the world, but that is a story and no more." He shakes his head. "If only I had been there to battle the father of the sky demons! If only my blade had brought down the god of chaos!"

CatsCradle says clearly, "You have led your pack past survival to flourish. My pack was not so strong." She hesitates for a moment. "I think I am the only one of it to have survived. Therefore, Hun-Grrr, your own accomplishment is great."

Nightracer nods in agreement to Cat's words ". And a great many of ours fell to this chaos, along with most of our worlds" she says sitting a bit back from the festivities

Megatron calmingly places his hand on Hun-Grr's shoulder. "It was not the work of one alone, it was the work of our entire tribe to defeat the Chaos-bringer."

Hun-Grrr nods, "And certainly, it takes all of the Clan of Terror to keep the great slithering worms at bay, for else they would destroy everything! Indeed, this night has given me much to think about."

Megatron says: "But now tell me about that angry spirits and the room that hold the secrets of the world." Old data archives, protected by a security system that is out of control?

Hun-Grrr scoffs, "Bah - that room is a place for cowards and spirit-talkers. You do not want to bother yourself with such things. Perhaps if you descend into the core with me, you will see the great worms and you can do battle with them! There is much glory to be won in depths!"

Megatron chuckles. "Excuse, Hun-grr, it is just my curiosity. I do not fear angry spirits - I do not fear anyone.

Hun-Grrr shrugs, "I can show you, but the room will slay you if you enter."

Megatron smirks. "We will see if it will.

The underworld dweller grunts and pushes the piece of "meat" toward Thrust. With his other hand he gestures insistently.

Nightracer grins at Thrust's discomfiture "take it. Eat it" she says

Skyraider watches as Thrust is offered the piece of 'meat'

Thrust glances to Megatron as if asking for permission then sees others are eating this stuff. He really doesn’t want it but he doesn’t want to look like he’s scared....so he takes it, " okok....." he hesitates just for a second then takes a bite....and holds it in his mouth for a moment all the while forcing his energon tank to not go into reverse....

Resyke's friend continues to chitter.

Resyke shrugs, and transforms into Roach mode to chitter back. He's not sure what the crab thing wants, but it seems friendly enough..d oesn’t it?

Ghost watches and waits, her thoughts her own until she catches CatsCradles movement. A brow lifts and she frowns, standing up and sliding towards her fellow terran dweller and asking her softly, "I'm not informed of manners here nor of the proper way to ask without indenturing myself to the protection of another." She nods towards the carcass, lifting a brow.

Blot offers Ghost a lump of fetid slime. Rippersnapper shakes his head in amazement. Do these Upper Earth femmes really go for Blot? Maybe he should try rolling in something.

CatsCradle glances back to Ghost. "I... I am not sure of their rituals," she murmurs. "I only know that my pack's law was Contribution. Or to find someone to sponser you." Then she smiles as Blot hands Ghost an offering. "But I think that may answer your question."

Ghost lifts a brow as some.. one offers her something.. slimy.. Blinking, she seems taken aback by the movement, unconsciously stepping behind CatsCradle for a moment.

CatsCradle's optics flicker slightly, and she leans forward to Blot again. "Forgive my friend," she says softly. "She has nothing to offer in trade. May I speak for her and give her some of my share?"

Blot eats some of the goop and proffers back to Ghost, to show that it's quite a delicacy down here.

Ghost steps back to Cats side, looking slightly discomforted. She offers Blot a faint, wary smile, spars fanning out behind her to rustle in a phantom breeze as she extends a taloned hand to take the offering from Blot, speaking softly, "Many thanks walker of the underdark."

Thrust's benefactor seems satisfied, giving him a twisted-toothed grin, and moves on with another piece of carcass, this time approaching Skyraider. Just as subtly (not), he pushes the piece of 'meat' toward the other seeker.

Skyraider looks down at the creature, who seems to be offering him a piece now. He points to his face with one hand, while holding up his hand with the other. "Sorry, can't with the faceplate." A lousy excuse, but it would have to do.

The underworld dweller isn't satisfied with this excuse. He slaps the 'meat' against Skyraider's midsection and hisses insistently.

Thrust swallows finally and realizes its a bit better then ...jellyfish...of which he still cant live that one down...he takes another bite.

Gryphus continues dancing, but has changed the steps with the change in the beat... her optics remain shut as she looses herself to the movements.

Resyke looks away from his mindless chittering conversation with a crab-thing to Skyraider. "I'll eat it if you don't want it."

Skyraider looks down as the creature slaps the 'meat against his newly-touched up armour. Trying to control himself, he refuses politely (or as politely as he can).

The creature begins to look seriously offended. He now shoves at the seeker a bit, growling something garbled.

Thrust finishes his piece of transorganic and looks on to Skyraider with an interesting expression...perhaps he will check into a face plate sometime soon
Macabre finishes eating, wiping her mouth with the back of her hand. She looks around at the Decepticons mingling with her people. She doesn't know why, but she doesn't like it. She doesn't like it at all. She finds some cozy little semi-isolated spot to watch, sinking her sharp shield into the ground, and adjusting the leonic half-skull on her head (it is not unlike a baseball cap). Quietly, she growls.

Ruse watches Sky... and then considers that she might have to take a bit as well. "I wonder what they would do if they even saw an energon cube... hm wait." She suddenly transforms as curiosity gets the better of her. She opens a wrist compartment and walks over to the one offering meat.. and offers him an energon treat.

The creature badgering Skyraider takes a step back, looking the seeker up and down as though evaluating what to do from here. One hand comes up and curls into a fist of sorts - but then Ruse catches his attention, with that glowing energon treat held out to him. Skyraider forgotten, he regards it with interest.

Skyraider notices the creatures gaze turning from him. Following it, he see ruse wit with an energon goodie, which the creature seems to be fascinated with.

Ruse offers the meatweilder the decent fuel... hoping he will forget all about the disgusting meat. She takes a small 'bite' first, breaking open the cube seal so a bit of glowing fuel runs down her hand. She then offers the rest to him, "Have a bite of some good fuel."

Nightracer winces at the sight what Ruse is doing, worrying that she will overenergise the hulking barbarian.

The creature offers the dripping piece of carcass to Ruse, now - in a less crude manner than he had to the others, since here he's getting something in return. He takes the glowing cube, sniffs at it, laps the dripping energon off the sides, and then pops the whole thing in his mouth, chewing noisily.

Ruse takes the meat and with some instinctive diplomatic skill keeps it and just seems to be smelling it as if savouring it... as she stalks quietly over to the remains of the transorg... and when no one is looking drops it atop so it looks as if she finished her meal. "Mmm good." She walks over to Skyraider after the bit of trickery and says simply, "You owe me one."

Skyraider looks down towards Ruse. In response to her statement, he simply nods, then turns to face Hun-Grr

Gryphus’ optics open, still dully glowing as she slows her dancing feet, listening to the snarling being issued from those that apparently don't talk a civil language.

Rippersnapper shuffles up to CatsCradle, "Behold - I am Rippersnapper, slayer of the mighty worm 'Gutcrawler', winner of the chunking festival for three-years running, breaker of walls and eater of rocks. I am a mighty hunter and my deeds pave my path!"

Rippersnapper glares at Blot who sighs and steps back.

Ghost mutters to CatsCradle, 'I take it we introduce ourselves in a similar fashion?'

CatsCradle smiles at Rippersnapper, with a bow of her head with an air of respect, not submission. "My greetings to you and admiration for your deeds. I am CatsCradle." She thinks for a minute. "Survivor, weaver of energy." Then with a faint hint of amusement, "Mate to Chaos." She gives Ghost a slight nod.

Ghost's optics flicker emerald as she offers a faint wry smile, peering at Rippersnapper. "I am sister to our lord, walker of shadows, weaver of night. I am twin to Chaos, shadow to all and none, singer of nightfall and she who hunts alone. I am Ghost." A slight bow accompanies the name giving.

Macabre watches Ghost, CatsCradle, and Rippersnapper discreetly and a touch disdainfully from her little spot.

Blot says, "Me am Blot smell," he says, reciting his brave deeds for the warriors of Upper Earth.


The band's playing has intensified, following Cutthroat's lead as he works himself into a frenzy. The song builds to a raging climax before Cutthroat inadvertently shatters half his drum set. The music stops. Sinking down and sitting on his behind, Cutthroat pants, exhausted. "I... I think this is a good time for a break."

Resyke waves his antennae in what might be a disappointed fashion. There goes that free meal.

Soundwave too lets his own background music fade out with the end of the acoustics.

Someone taps Resyke on the shoulder, "She say she likes you," he chuckles, pointing to the crab mech. "She say you just right size."

Resyke pulls a 360 degree turn to stare at whoever tapped him, then at the crab-thing. "Well.. um.. gee..." he stutters.

Resyke's translator says, "She says she gives you her finest blanket and most powerful charm."

Resyke waves his antennae, at a complete loss for words. "Um.. that's.. great.. uh.." he stammers, looking around at the other Decepticons. "A little help here?"

The crab mech scuttles over to Resyke and begins to lace a pair of tentacles around his neck.

Gryphus moves closer to the group, now mingling more with the primitives, she keeps her feathers ruffled up to make herself look more impressive. Her dull optics take in everything they can.

Hun-Grrr gets to his feet, "Come warriors - I will show Megatron the Wailing Room. He claims that he stronger than the spirits there. We shall see! Those of you who wish to come, come! Those who wish to stay - feast, tell tales, be merry for tomorrow we could all die in the jaws of the great worms!" The primitives cheer madly.

Skyraider appears happy that the creature has completely forgotten him. He stands a few feet behind Megatron, keeping an eye on proceedings and trying to catch up.

Soundwave moves unobtrusively to stand near Megatron.

Gryphus takes a spot just behind Soundwave, observing as she swings her tail lazily behind her - much like a horse would if it was experiencing biting flies.

Megatron gets up as well, following Hun-Grr. Supposingly, the tribe of terror misinterprets technology with mystery. However, he will have a look himself.

Thrust follows keeping an eye out that no one tries to attack his leader

Ruse looks as well to the others and follows.. As she does, she moves to snatch up Resyke before he ends up with a pair of kidlets, and carry him under her arm until they are away from the crabthing, "Come on, Romeo..."

Resyke waves his antennae in a "bye bye" motion, muttering "Thanks Ruse, I owe you one" as he's carried away.

Hun-Grrr said, "It is this way!" he says, transforming,  and begins to charge up the hill side.

Skyraider follows after Megatron, his curiosity winning out

Cutthroat follows his fellow Abominites.

Rippersnapper says, "I can call forth the great warrior Abominus, he who slew the sky demons and lead our people to Angselik. He is a most powerful god, able to rip apart sky demons and to crush the worms beneath his heels!" He's got to impress those girls somehow.

Blot says, "Blot summon 'bomnus too."

Rippersnapper hisses, "Keep out of it, Blot."

Ghost lifts a brow at that, considering carefully before she makes any more.. boasts. "I can weave shadows and walk unseen through walls." she comes back .
Skyraider hears Rippersnapper’s boasting and turns around to face him. "Who exactly are these Sky-Demons?"

Nightracer decides to mingle with the natives a bit more and walks closer to where Ghost and Cats are talking to the one called Rippersnapper

Rippersnapper says, "A great enemy...." He sees Hun-Grrr leaving. "Gotta go." He leaps after Hun-Grr, ready to follow. Blot shuffles behind him as well.

CatsCradle gives another bow of her head as Rippersnapper moves away. "I think that's our cue too," she murmurs to Ghost, She flows to her feet and slips through the crowd to follow the others.

Nightracer looks from Rippersnapper to Ghost and back, wondering who they are trying to impress with their boasts

Ghost nods and moves with CatsCradle on silent feet, spars shifting to lie flat against her back as she goes from slightly approachable back to on utter guard.

Rippersnapper looks to Ghost as they walk, mulling over her boast about walking through walls.  “Well, hmmm... you must be strong in the spirit world to be able to do that!"

Ghost lifts a brow to peer at Rippersnapper, some inkling of mischief rising as she replies smoothly, "Well. I *am* Ghost."

Rippersnapper says, "A real... *ghost*?" He seems extremely nervous.

CatsCradle murmurs to Ghost, “And the last time you proved it, you got Unicron very interested in you. Be careful who you impress this time, please?”  She gives the other femme a kind smile.

Ghost blinks.. glances at CatsCradle.. and shrinks into herself, optics going grey-black, expression going flat as she stares off going motionless.

Rippersnapper takes a distinct step backwards.

Macabre watches everyone leave, silent as ever. She idly drums her sharp fingertips softly on her shield, which remains planted firmly in the ground.

Hun-Grrr scrabbles up the hillside in his monstrous form and eventually leads the group to a small cave. "Beyond there, the Wailing Room! Watch - he bits a mouthful of rock with left head and spits it out as a projectile with his right head. The missile slams forward before shattering apart on some strange barrier.

The ground leading up to the room is littered with the shells of fallen primitive warriors.

Soundwave takes out his scanner again, taking readings.

Ruse smirks at Resyke as she set the roach down after a bit away from the crabcon, "Just don't get humped on the way back to the surface, we don't need a hundred tiny roachcons skittering the base." She then peers at as the rock shatters murmuring to herself mostly, "Forcefield?"

Resyke would blush at that, if he were in robot mode. "Um.. yeah. I'll try."

Cutthroat idly fingers one of the garlands of eyeballs as he watches the missile's untimely demise. He looks at Ruse, "Force...what? Speak sense."

Ruse begins to explain to Cutthroat, "A wall of power.. that can't be seen." She tilts her head a bit and reclines against a nearby wall, crossing her arms. She lets the others quest for information and just remains quiet for now.

Cutthroat again looks quizzically at Ruse. "Where have you found knowledge so arcane?" He's obviously a bit mystified and a bit intrigued -- this is his black magic.

Ruse smiles at Cutthroat, and takes out a small hologram matrix from her subspace compartment. She activates it projecting an image of a Decepticon sigil spinning in midair, "I guess you could think of me as a sorceress of my tribe... and Soundwave the elder."

Cutthroat is utterly amazed by the hologram. "Ahem," he coughs, trying to cover his flabbergastation up, even though 'flabbergastation' is not a word. "... sorcerers." Again, he fingers one of the garlands of eyeballs surrounding his neck.

Ruse adds, "Or a witch depending on who you talk with..." She smirks and then puts the miniature projector away.

Megatron looks over to the dark blue Decepticon. "Do you get any readings, Soundwave?"

Hun-Grrr says, "I had thought of summoning the great warrior Abominus to tear down the door, but it does not interest me all that much."

Megatron glances at Hun-Grr. "Abonimus?"

Hun-Grrr thumps his halberd into the ground, "A great warrior god. Only I and my brothers can call him forth from the netherworld."

Cutthroat nods proudly in concurrence with Hun-Grrr.

Soundwave's optic band flickers faintly, then steadies. "It is a defensive field of some manner. It appears to..." he checks something, pauses, shakes his head slightly as though to clear his vision, then continues, "it appears to tear apart objects on the molecular level. I can only speculate what is behind it. The power readings here are stronger than previously." He regards his scanner as though puzzled.

Megatron rubs his chin. "Interesting. I'd like to meet him one time, Hun-Grr." He tilts his head. "Defense system that shatters objects into molecules? Can we interfere with the field or reach the computer that controls it?

Soundwave says, "If we cannot," he steps a bit closer to Megatron and lowers his voice, "then I must suggest we withdraw from this area before we incur lasting damage.""

Gryphus follows the group, peering around and listening. She makes a soft hiss as if something is bothering her about this place.

Ravenwing is thoughtfully staring at the forcefield with something like professional interest. Security system. Forcefield. Where's the power system for this?

Nightracer stays close to Ravenwing as the antics of the emperor do not interest her quite as much as the well-being of the daughter, however grudgingly accepted, of her Lord

Thrust glances to Ghost and smiles ever so slightly in a brief greeting to her.

Skyraider looks at the entrance, clearly unimpressed by the missiles disintegration. A forcefield...he can do that, so what?

Nightracer mutters to herself "We would do better to go hunt one of these transorganics for these mechs."

Gryphus mutters something, but no in a tongue that anyone here would recognize. Something in her mind clicks, connecting the runes with the primitives to this room -- this is momentary and the moment of dawning recognition fades away. She gives a perturbed swish of her tail and clacks her beak a few times.

CatsCradle places her hand on Ghost's shoulder, giving it a comforting squeeze. The words were not meant in scorn, but a gentle reminder... perhaps as one sister to another. She moves up to Soundwave. "We overpowered a forcefield once by pushing my 'field into it. We could try that again...?"

Ghost slips her spars around her like a tattered cloak, nodding at CatsCradle with a rattled sigh before she peers over at Thrust, lifting a brow then nodding once.

Thrust watches her for a moment as if to make sure everything is ok then continues his visual scan of the whole area.

Soundwave regards CatsCradle thoughtfully. "This is an entirely different manner of thing, CatsCradle. I would not risk your coming into contact with it. However - " he tilts his head a bit, as though listening intently - "I may be able to disrupt it sonically. Enough for you to get past it when protected in your force field."

CatsCradle studies the field. Definitely she is more in her element here, all of her earlier discomfiture gone. "That would get me in, but I am not techie enough to know how to dismantle it from inside." She shrugs. "I'll try, though."

Hun-Grrr looks around with his burning optics, "It is place of death. Many warriors of died here, trying to prove their valour! Pah! They should died fighting against the great dwellers in the depths!"

Megatron asks Soundwave: "Where is the field generator?

Hun-Grrr looks puzzled, "Field generator? Warriors do not bother themselves with sorcery and spirits. That is left for shamans to deal with!"

Megatron says, "That is not sorcery, but the enemy's weak spot."

Nightracer offers softly, so as not to contradict the emperor "Besides, we have a couple of shamans with us."

Soundwave says, "Behind the barrier, Commander. Shall I make the attempt?" He also looks to Hun-Grrr to see how the underworld leader will react to the suggestion. "This object, Hun-Grrr, has been a source of great damage to you." A pointed nod at the litter of remains near the field of destruction. "If we were to eliminate it, we would all be the better for it."

Megatron says, "Yes, Soundwave, proceed!"

Ruse  looks up to the others and asks, "Soundwave, why can't we just have him summon this great warriorgod, and have him punch a hole, a new doorway through? One that isn't guarded.. rather then risk Cats?"

Gryphus hears the word 'sonic' and gives a querying squawk, then falls silent again. She's not one for great conversation lately is she?

Megatron says, "If you know something, Gryphus, do not hesitate to share your wisdom with us."

Soundwave glances at Gryphus speculatively. "Can you match frequency to my output, Gryphus? A dual attack may disrupt the energy patterns utterly."

Gryphus apparently has nothing to share, she turns and paces about ten feet from the perimeter of the field... almost as if she is sizing it up. She seems to hear Soundwave and paws the ground with her avian foot, issuing a squawk accompanied by a nod.

Skyraider ,for the first time today, decides to speak to the general assembly, "Why don’t we blast our way through? Its only a weak material."

Ruse tenses and would rather let the boasters prove themselves rather then they risk their own necks, "Don't think that is an option anymore Sky..."

Skyraider hears Ruses comment, but shows no sign of it. He simply stands there expressionless, deep in thought

Soundwave says, "Firing on the field will have minimal effect."

Hun-Grrr folds his arms and stands back, watching to see how the warriors of Upper Earth will deal with it.

Soundwave says, "I cannot speak for the capabilities of this 'Abominus.' But we must either cancel this energy source, or withdraw from the area." He does not yet explain why. "CatsCradle, I will transform, and you can carry me within your field when I give the signal.""

Ghost's attention focuses on the strange field and the ongoing discussion about how to get it to drop or get someone on the other side. Her lips remain tightly pressed together, spars flat into her back, hands at her sides as she steps back and away, maintaining that on alert but not going to get involved air.

CatsCradle gives one of her abbreviated shrugs, emphasized more perhaps by the remaining patch on her shoulder. "I'll give it a try. Worse comes to worse, Diver puts me back together again." Being risked does not appear to be on her list of worries; apparently the list has been shuffled around drastically. She gives Gryphus a skeptical glance at her wordlessness, though, then does another shrug, of dismissal this time. "Whenever you're ready, Soundwave."

Ruse dims her optics and hisses, "You two had better make it.", worry in her tone more then anything.

Soundwave looks to Ghost for a moment, already formulating a 'plan B' - if they fail, Ghost's phasing ability may be an alternative. Provided the emanations don't disrupt her energy. This, he decides, is the safest path. He transforms into his smaller alt mode, and begins emitting a signal....

A faint, high-pitched tone shivers out into the surrounding area, just barely within the range of hearing of most of those present. It's like the screech of static, faintly perceived, that vibrates throughout one's structure.

Gryphus listens carefully to the signal, when she attempts to echo it, it is off at first but she gets in tune with it shortly enough and keeps it up. If she hears the pitched sound, she gives no indication.

CatsCradle picks up Soundwave and tucks him under one arm. She holds up her hands, facing each other . Her fingers begin to glow, highlighting their curve, dancing off the tips of her claws, reflecting against the base-steal metal color of her hands. The tendrils of energy weave together, twining and twisting into a gossamer net, spreading out in front of her in a curving half-bubble.

Hun-Grrr looks rather impressed at all this, but still thinks its a waste of effort.

Ruse watches intently, drawing herself upright and ready to do.. something if she can should this fail.

Cutthroat waits to see what kind of sorcery these outsiders will attempt... while he shares Hun-Grrr's sentiments slightly, he can't help but wonder if these people could actually get through it.

CatsCradle steps forward, pushing her 'field up against the other one...

There is a strange, spasmodic warping into the centre of the area and then a muffled explosion can be seen in the distance. A blast of white noise stabs into everyone's optics.

Skyraider watches as Soundwave, CatsCradle and Gryphus attempt to break through the forcefield.

Nightracer looks at Cats and Soundwave risking their lives

Gryphus’ echoing of Soundwave stops the second this white noise hits her audios. She hisses in pain.

Cutthroat clutches his audio receptors. Damn those sorcerers! He grimaces, his hands doing little to stop the assault on his brain.

CatsCradle stops moving forward, squinting painfully. "Damn it, I am NOT losing another set of optics. Soundwave? Suggestions?"

Resyke's sensitive antennae amplify the white-noise to pain inducing levels and he drops to one knee.

Ruse hisses aloud unheard and in pain more then likely. She shields her optics with a hand and clenches her fists in frustration over an audio receiver with the other, unable to see what’s happening above the screaming static.

Soundwave stops generating the sonic disruption as he senses the defense field has been destroyed. For a moment he's still, re-orienting himself after that blast.

Skyraider shields his audio receptors with his hands, trying to block out the noise.

Thrust sets his lower jaw and tightens his optics to slits as he waits out this audio barrage.

Nightracer winces at the painful burst of static and disconnects her audio receptors until her self-repair systems can deal with the damage

Hun-Grrr grunts, but otherwise shows no sign that the attack has effected him. "Has your sorcery triumphed?" he demands.

Gryphus shakes her head as she backs away. It will take awhile to recover from that noise.

Megatron clenched his jaw plates at the pain, but he keeps his optics on what happens. "CatsCradle, report!"

CatsCradle pushes her 'field forward again, and she glides forward easily. "Umm... I think the forcefield's gone..."

Hun-Grrr laughs and surges forward, "It is gone! To me, my warriors. We shall defeat the spirits of the Wailing Room with our blades and claws now!" He charges forward across the landscape, crunching broken transformers beneath his massive claws.

Gryphus’ ears recover enough to hear the trampling primitives rush up behind her, she gets out of their way quickly.

Resyke shakes his head, trying to clear the ringing from his audial sensors. Hun-Gr.’s voice comes across as a muffled booming sound.

Megatron comes closer. "Then let's find out what is behind the door." And he remembers what Starscream once said: "If there is a curse at the door, there is a treasure on the other side."

Cutthroat is agape for a moment before transforming and squawking a shrill war cry, following Hun-Grrr into whatever lies beyond.

Soundwave shifts slightly in CatsCradle's grip and works himself free, transforming to robot mode again.

CatsCradle quickly lets the energy of her 'field dissipate and puts Soundwave down, stepping away to give him room to transform, blinking furiously.

Ruse slowly recovers and shakes her head, "And you’re not, thank goodness..." She then suddenly moves to JUMP in front of Hun-Grr, "WAIT!" What let these savages ruin the data they just risked their lives for? No way! She quickly thinks of "We should get the first chance to attack for a reason to get them to stop

Hun-Grrr leaps over Ruse, saying, "We must strike now before they have time to attack us with their own foul sorcery..." He stops, rather amazed when the door slides open of its own accord as he approaches. "See? It is a challenge; they invite us in to do battle."

Cutthroat lets out a shrill laugh, almost giddy with anticipation of the battle. "We shall destroy them like we have destroyed all others," he boasts.

Soundwave puts a hand to the side of his head for a few moments, as though still feeling the effects of that sound burst. But perhaps it's something else as well. The optic band flickers a little. Once again he brings out the scanner and checks his readings. He hangs back, not quite so eager to follow the Terrorcon into the fray just yet.

Megatron says, "Soundwave, what do the scanners say?"

Ruse hopes she doesn't get run over... or pushed aside.. but is amazed as she is just leapt over by Hun-Grr... She turns in frustration and runs right after him hoping this doesn't end with the Decepticons getting just a sliver of data about something after such a risk.. as par the course.

Soundwave says, "Ruse, wait!"

Nightracer watches the mass exodus into the protected room with an impassive expression. She makes herself comfortable, or as comfortable as possible with the stink of roasting meat that is getting far too well done

Resyke smacks the side of his helmet, blinking as his hearing returns. Foul sorcery? "Hey.. " he says as the Terrorcons and Ruse run off towards the cave.

Soundwave replies to Megatron, "Commander, something within is generating energy patterns that will be disruptive to our thought processes. Perhaps not immediately, but over time. And I cannot tell what the long-term effects will be."

Skyraider watches unemotionally as the drama unfolds before him.

Ruse doesn't wait... and transforms into her foxmode to keep up with the others. She doesn't hear Soundwave's warning... intent on keeping any data inside intact for a change.

Hun-Grrr pads into the door, his two heads looking both left and right at once. There are many strange, sorcerous things in there. Lights flash and things flicker at him. There is also a gigantic warrior standing at the back of the room. Hmm, perhaps a Thunder Tail Slap attack to tear this foul cavern apart?

Megatron says, "Can you determine what it is? Maybe we can bypass its functions or deactivate it from the outside."

Gryphus keeps as far from entering that room the primitives entered as possible. She is content to watch and listen from afar.

Resyke is torn between his natural curiosity and his self-preservation instinct. This time, self-preservation wins, and he stays with Megatron and co. "Wait, Soundwave said it could be dangerous!" he says. Not that anyone's listening.

Soundwave says, "Negative. It is within." He watches Hun-Grrr disappear into the doorway.

Soundwave says, "If we can disable it quickly, it may do minimal harm."

Megatron tries to grasp Hun-Grrr to draw him back. "Careful, that can damage you."

Macabre has moved toward the crowd area, curious. Watching from the crest of a hill, crouched and nearly invisible unless one is looking extremely hard, she sees the door open for the Khan. She stops breathing for a long moment.

Ruse rumbles at Hun-Grr as she rushes forward, "Wait! Don't do anything rash. Let our elders look first!" She ends up going in, and is awed at what she sees., She stalks towards the gigantic warrior at the back in fascination...

CatsCradle peers in, looking around, curiosity winning out over precautions.

A thick layer of sludge covers the whole rotten area. This place is somewhat lower than the chamber to the north, and it seems to be the waste deposit of the whole stinking area. Various bits and pieces of debris are spread about in the goo, including the arm of a half-dissolved Cybertronian ... ew.

The sea of refuse borders what was once a city. The collapse of the spires of Angselik and the contortions of the ground have torn a small dark rift in the ground at the edge of the ruins.

Cutthroat flaps above the sludge on the ground. "Ugh. Do you think that this place is related to Blot?"

A voice suddenly rasps out as the Decepticons enter, ".....100 efficiency. Ah, I see that warrior units have been ordered in. Has the rebellion been arrested?"

Hun-Grrr is about to answer Cutthroat when suddenly the voice rings out. He looks sharply, both left and right, in all directions. "Show yourself, demon!" he demands.

Cutthroat squawks to punctuate Hun-Grrr's command.

Ruse blinks her optic units and spins around as well in confusion, "Rebellion?"

Soundwave follows after Megatron, aware that they're heading toward the generator of whatever it is that's sending out those very strange readings.

Thrust steps in the muck and nearly falls. He throws out his arms instinctively and would smack anyone near him as he regains his balance in the sludge

Skyraider gets smacked in the jaw by one of Thrusts flailing arms. "Hey, watch it!"

Thrust resumes his posture and tries to look cool about it.

The voice says, "#Mark 323 Unit Identified. Has the rebellion been arrested?"

Megatron runs after Ruse. "I did not give the order to enter!"

Resyke runs off after the others, leaping from piece of scrap to piece of scrap, trying to avoid falling in the goop.

Soundwave searches for the source of the hidden voice.

Ruse looks back to Megatron somewhat surprised, "Sorry I didn't hear you, commander." She then tilts her head at the voice and answers venturing, "... negative? Need um.. status report on.. rebellion?"

A small hovering unit floats in front of Ruse. "Report, please. It's been some time."

Hun-Grrr roars, "I am Hun-Grrr, Khan of all Angselik! Slayer the dread-worm Slashfang, master of the weapon Skullbiter! Show yourself!"

Gryphus peeks a head into the room, and nothing more than that.

CatsCradle steps further into the room, each step unconsciously careful and delicate, and not even noticing the slime as she makes her way through it. "Hun-Grrr," she says soothingly, "no one debates your greatness, and certainly no demon would dare challenge you, especially with your warriors gathered around you. Please allow us a moment to examine these artifacts, and perhaps find one that might put the demon in our control."

Cutthroat looks around, trying to espy some kind of man behind the curtain.

Skyraider stands beside Thrust with his arms folded across his chest.

Thrust glances to Skyraider and looks back to the action.

Skyraider looks towards Thrust. "Who keeps talking? And why won’t he show himself?"

The hovering unit says, "I was instructed to maintain the experiment in this area after my creator left for the engine chamber. I assume we have regained control of the surface? If so, why are none the communication relays working? This is most irregular."

Ruse looks at the unit carefully inspecting it, "... ah. Ahem, Rebellion leaders defeated. Rogue units scattered. Safety, assured. Recall creator so we may report... many systems above damaged." Maybe this will get the creature with the voice to come out.

Hun-Grrr glares around suspiciously but knows that these Upper Earth warriors are better equipped to deal with foul sorcery than his people are.

Megatron frowns. Mark 323 unit? Sounds like a kind of warrior unit. "I am Megatron, leader of the Decepticons. Identify your creator!"

Soundwave steps forward through the muck and slime and regards the hovering unit.

Resyke sits on what looks to be the remains of a Cybertronian helmet of some kind. This kind of thing is so far out of his league it's laughable. So the little cleaner settles down to watch the show.

The hovering unit says, "Hmm. None of the creators are responding to my frequencies. 'Leader of the Decepticons' - which factory unit are you from?'

Ruse says, ".... factory unit? ... creation factory?"

Gryphus may have something to say about this hovering unit or this creator it speaks of, being the researcher of the group. But considering she's not spoken a word in several weeks, it is doubtful she'll be offering any sage words today. She keeps watch from her vantage point.

CatsCradle glances at the hovering unit. "And if it turns out to be Codex again, I really am killing him this time." She smiles charmingly at Hun-Grrr again. "I think our packs will make a good team. Your warriors, and our... magic workers."

Megatron watches the unit. Is it really possible that it is from the times of the legendary rebellion? "I am one of Vector Sigma's creations."

The unit bleeps, "I am a QuintEssential Mark IV Status Control Computer Nexus. Vector Sigma unit identified. Scanning for creators - complete. None found. The creators cannot be located. The experiment has been jeopardized. Activating emergency defense procedures. Energy weapon inhibitor field activated. Activating Omega Class Guardian Robot to protect main computer data banks."

At the back of the chamber, the great robot flickers into life. Its optics flicker slightly and then it lumbers forward. The computer says, "I must terminate all rebellious units." It sounds vaguely apologetic.

Megatron raises his cannon at once, trying to fire at the unit. What he does not need now is a guardian.

Resyke blinks. "Uh oh.."

CatsCradle takes a step back in spite of herself. "Omega class? Oh, tell me we're not talking Omega Supreme, here?"

Ruse glances to Megatron then back to the drone, "... Energy weapon inhibitor field activated.. Megatron your cannon wont work!" She summons her sword from subspace hissing, "Guardian robot, this is just one of those days."

Megatron fears that too, but that doesn't stop him from trying.

Soundwave draws his plasma rifle again also, but is aware of a new sound in the chamber, another energy-interference signal.

Gryphus knew she should of left when she felt something was amiss in this room, too late now however. She offers a guardian a low hiss and eyes it dubiously.

The robot steps out. It's huge. It holds up a weapon which begins to glow with white hot energy.

Hun-Grrr roars, "Aha, the demon shows itself! Now - die before my fangs!" He charges forward at the robot which sharply kicks him, knocking him back against the far wall against the computer bank which suddenly begins to spark and crackle.

Megatron says, "Soundwave, the computer!"

The robot begins to go haywire. It fires a beam directly at the Decepticons that carves a deep rift in the metallic ground.

Ruse stares for only a moment before she scatters! "Oh sure and its weapon -still- fires... must have some protection from the interference." She runs trying to get behind to robot and leaps up against a wall then off from it and swings her sword at the robots back trying to distract it from firing!

The remote unit that the computer was using to communicate with drops suddenly the ground.

Soundwave leaps aside from the beam, not even attempting to fire off a shot. He dives toward the computer, where Hun-Grrr has been thrown against the structure.

Cutthroat flies back just out of reach of the beam, and when the robot's head is turned he attempts to make use of all his sharp, pointy edges.

Soundwave looks over the computer, to see if he can make sense of it before a massive blast from the Guardian's weapon strikes him in the back.

CatsCradle ducks out of the way as Hun-Grr goes flying back over her, drawing her sword in the same flowing movement. No energy weapons, huh? Won't be the first time she's down to blade and claws. She darts forward, sliding through the muck, trying to get behind the robot, looking for anything that looks stab-able or claw-able.

Ruse glances as Cat has just about the same idea.. and smirks, "Come on lets rip him a new exhaust port!" She then sees two things happen at once... gestalt suddenly forming and Soundwave going down. With a cry of rage she slashes at the robots back.. coming to a hover behind it!

Gryphus moves out of the way, but just barely, of the undirected guardian laser.

Megatron jerks aside, rolling over his shoulder. He reaches for the remote unit, using it as a shield.

Hun-Grrr growls and struggles to his feet, "Cutthroat! Blot! Rippersnapper! Sinnertwin! We must use the ritual and summon forth the Warrior God Abominus from the netherworld!"

Resyke jumps. "Yeee!" he cries as the Guardian opens fire, taking cover behind a large pile of scrap.

Cutthroat is back to Hun-Grrr before the Khan can even finish his proclamation, knowing his intent from the moment he opened his mouths.

Megatron tries to draw the guardian’ attention away from Soundwave.

Hun-Grrr begins to chant quickly and then performs the ritual - which involves the Terrorcons merging into a squat, ape-like gestalt that roars and beats its chest.

Gryphus blinks, a gestalt? Well this is interesting...

Thrust looks to Skyraider and transforms to jet mode

Skyraider nods and transforms into jet mode

CatsCradle darts in at the robot's ankle, driving her sword into the joint, hoping to lock the joint up and at least make the guardian hop around off balance a little.

Thrust heads up toward the Guardian from the left.

Megatron says, "Keep the guardian's attention from Soundwave!"

Resyke peers around the rubble he's hiding behind, jaw dropping as the Terrorcons do their mergy thing. Well that settles it.. this is /defiantly/ not his fight.

Soundwave tries to access the damaged computer. If only he can turn off the inhibitor field, at least they'll be able to fire on the rampaging Guardian.

Thrust replies, " As you command." he dives across the front of the guardian and heads around its backside.

Skyraider heads from the left towards the Guardian.

Gryphus decides now is a good time to leave, so she gallops off to head back to the surface.

Detecting the 'Great Warrior Spirit' to be the most imminent threat in the room, the guardian targets it, the small Decepticons not terribly affecting its endurance yet. However, they cause enough of a delay for Abominus to charge, uncaring about whatever or whoever is in its path, to swing both its fists in an axehandle at the guardian's face.

Soundwave risks a glance over his shoulder as the Terrorcons merge.

Megatron ducks another attack of the guardian as he realizes what happens. "A combiner?" he murmurs. "Looks like Decepticon technology..."

The guardian stumbles as the Decepticon rip into its feet. It then takes a double-beating as Abominus leaps on top of it like a psychotic ape and begins to furiously pummel and rip away at the guardian. Unlike other gestalts, Abominus doesn't seem particularly vocal: a deep rumbling growl seems to be most of his limit of conversation. Those Decepticons in close melee with the guardian might want to stand back or try another tactic to avoid being crushed by the guardian or Abominus as they throw each other around the room.


Thrust sees a giant fist heading in his flight path and scrambles to get out of the way. He yells to Sky, "Fist at all o’clock high...scramble!!!"

Skyraider hears Thrusts warning just in time as a giant fist comes arcing towards him. He manages to evade it just in time.


Megatron gets out of fighting robots’ range.

Thrust flies out of the battles way and hovers down. Transforming he lands but stays on the ready to get back in the air at a seconds notice.

Resyke cowers behind his rubble.

Ruse hovers back as the terrorcons charge and axhandle the blocky clunker asking even as she does, "Soundwave are you all right?" She flies back and waits after the worried question taking basic evasive maneuvers.. knowing better then to get caught under the huge Bot if it falls to the assault

Soundwave can't pay too much attention to the battle going on behind him. Having finally pried open an access panel in the computer's side, he connects himself directly into the system, and searches ... searches ... until he finally comes upon the command to deactivate the inhibitor field. A moment later, the faint, high-pitched tone that had been bothering him just at the edge of his hearing, shuts off. Only then does he nod to Ruse. "I am fine," he says, turning away from the computer bank.

Skyraider flies away from the two giant robots and lands. he the transforms into his robot mode.

CatsCradle tries to yank her sword free for another stab, then abandons it as it locks real good into the ankle joint. She skids out of the way of the pounding feet, somehow managing to not slip in the muck, using it instead to slide faster than she could have run. She backs up a few more steps, trying to figure out another way of attacking.

Soundwave powers up his shoulder cannon experimentally. Ready to leap sideways if necessary, he fires a blast of plasma from the barrel, at the clanking Guardian - if only to distract it so the monstrous Abominus can deal with it more easily. Whatever he did on the computer seems to have worked.

The clash of the titans continues all over the room, the debris becoming even more splintered. At one point, Abominus slams the guardian into what looks like a support post, but luckily the roof doesn't come down on them all.

CatsCradle smiles, all sweetness and diplomacy gone, as her lasers come back on-line again. She takes careful aim at the guardian's optics and fires at them as the two giants fight past her.

Megatron says, "Can we use our weapons again, Soundwave?"

Thrust sees energy weapons are back on line and he fires up at the Guardians face

Soundwave fires off another blast of plasma in reply.

Skyraider raises his lasers and starts firing at the Guardian.

The prospect of being crushed under falling rubble.. AGAIN, doesn't appeal to Resyke. Scurrying out from his hiding place, the diminutive insecticon heads over to stand beside Soundwave and the Boss, figuring that if he's gonna get scrapped, he might as well get blasted this time.

Ruse nods to Soundwave with relief and notices he has finished with deactivating the field, broadcasting it with his plasmablast. She summons her rifle and begins to take aim... finding it hard though with the way the mammoths are thrashing each other, "Come on one good hit..." She tries to steady her hand with the other. aim a bit shaker then it used to be.

The guardian takes Soundwave's shot in the head and then is blinded when CatsCradle shoots its optics out. Abominus pauses and then rips off the guardian's head. The body, peppered by shots, clunks to a halt and then stops. Abominus roars and then starts to eat the fallen guardian, squatting over its body and cramming its energon tank into his mouth. "Aarrgahahhahaha!" he screams, victoriously.

Megatron now saw the blast from Soundwave's weapon. "Excellent work, Soundwave!"

Soundwave dodges some flying debris as Abomimus rips apart his opponent. Taking the opportunity again, he turns back to the computer and taps in again, to see what else he can find. Though much is damaged, one file at least is still intact and accessible. "Commander, you may wish to see this," he says.

Ruse watches this and sighs, smirking though. "Well at least it is deactivated." She hovers down to Soundwave and Resyke. She watches the beast made of terrorcons before them, wondering if it even has sentience anymore.

Megatron joins the dark blue Decepticon. "Well, Soundwave, what have you found?

Abominus beats his chest a few times, tears the leg off the guardian, and then starts smashing it into the wall to soften it a few times before he begins to devour it. He'll use the processed metallic scraps to create projectiles for his weapons, but probably most of the watching Decepticons don't know that and it just looks like he's being, er, somewhat strange.

Resyke mutters "Whoa..it's eating.. the Guardian" under his breath, watching the giant monster do it's thing..

CatsCradle lowers her arms, lasers hissing back into her armor cuffs. "Well now," she murmurs, but doesn't follow the comment with anything else. She moves forward to the guardian's body, careful to stay a respectful distance from the feeding gestalt, and tugs heavily at her sword still stuck in the ankle joint of the remaining leg.

Soundwave feels the room shudder at the forceful feeding habits of the combined Terrorcons, but he does not let it deter him. He activates the file.

As soon as Soundwave touches the switch, the report plays. A flickering image can been seen, though it's hard to make out exactly /what/ it is.:

report 35

The rebellion seems to be everywhere, but I have relocated myself to the underlayers until it is brought under control. My experimental fusions with organic and technomatter will create a race of better, self-replicating warriors that will be far superior than any of the current models...

Report #78

The transorganics have broken out of their incubating chambers and are now thriving around the core, cutting off my access to the engine room. I've had to relocate the batch of Decepticons modified for Cergenos-B down here to keep the transorganics at bay...

Report #344

The warrior transformers keep trying to get out and leave to join the rebellion, I've had to set up a delta-field emitter - it's pretty subtle, but it will slowly degrade their higher thought progresses and make them more aggressive.

Report #500

They've become a pack of savages, not really focused on keeping the transorganic population in check. I've used Aerial Sharkticon Unit #5 to capture a bunch of rebel transformers and drive them down here. As luck would have it, it turns out that I've just acquired the Abominus gestalt unit which I'll use to keep that pack of savage transformers in check while I work on a way to destroy the techno-organics..."

Report #506

I'm ready to make the descent now. I have rehabilitated a guardian robot for my own purposes and left the computer to monitor the experiment. I shall back before long and I hope that both the techno-organics and their zookeepers will have long since eliminated each other...

CatsCradle tugs harder at her sword, but it is /really/ stuck. She gives the ankle a good kick, and tugs again, determined not to lose another sword.

Abominus glares at CatsCradle and pulls on the other end of the guardian's leg. "Graahrhrhar!" he explains carefully.

CatsCradle says soothingly to the gestalt, "You can have your meal. I just want my sword back."

Abominus lifts up the leg and chews on it savagely. He's about to crunch down on the sword, too...

CatsCradle snarls softly, swinging up on the leg and running up it to swat Abominus on the nose (soft-paw, no claws). "Give me back my sword first," she growls at him. "Mine!"

Abominus grabs CatsCradle in his fist. "Graarrh!"  He starts to climb up the walls of the cavern.

CatsCradle glares out over his fist. "You wouldn't let anyone take your sword, would you? Give me mine and you can have your meal in peace."

Skyraider watches the gestalt and CatsCradle spar off

Ruse looks to the monitor, "Abominus gestalt unit? Rebellion? .. what IS this rebellion spoken of so often?"

Resyke is also trying to make sense of the transmission. "Sharkticon? What's that?"

Soundwave says, "Unknown. However, the device that could damage intellectual function was real enough. It would seem that some individual or being was performing experiments in this region which resulted in the creation of the TransOrganics, among other things."

Megatron rubs his chin. "I only have a vague idea about the story, Ruse. I've heard rumors about slavemasters, but nothing in particular.

Soundwave looks speculatively back toward Abominus. "How long ago must they have been dragged down here, and where in fact did combining technology originate? Perhaps it was discovered separately more than once." He is musing mostly to himself, imagining various scenarios.  He pulls himself out of his musing to look to Megatron again.  "Such as rumors of the Great Devourer and the Matrix?"

Megatron nods. "Some of the real old warriors used to talk of days of slavery. Most of the time when they were over-energized."

Ruse says, ".... well there is one way to find out. I say we take the terrorcons offer up and go hunt some worms... and make our own way to the core where this slavemaster, might be. Er, Cat, you do know Devestator wouldn't put up with that. I don't want to see you squished..."

Resyke blinks, trying to understand all this rebellion stuff.. then gleeps as Cats is grabbed. "Uh.."

Abominus drops CatsCradle on the ground and throws the dismembered guardian limb with the sword after her. He drops to the ground and is about to able forward again, but then a strange look comes into his optics. "Graah? Hoowwrraa! Gaarh!" he shouts.

Ruse facepalms... "King Kong has her in his fist and she is worried over a sword." She quickly strides over and moves to help Cats up, "You ok?"

CatsCradle flips in mid-air, bouncing once off the leg and landing on the floor, skidding a good ways. "I'm fine," she snarls. "But I still want my sword back." She stalks over to the leg again. "And I think he likes the killing-worms plan."

Soundwave watches Cats and Abominus a little dubiously. "A new sword is easily enough obtained, CatsCradle."

CatsCradle goes back to tugging. "Service issue swords are too damn heavy for me. I had this one hand built and I want it back. Took me forever to replace the last one."

Ruse nods to Cats though she can't say she wouldn't have done the same. since her tail is her sword and she would look rather awkward until it was replaced. She then moves to help Cats free her sword, "I can understand.. ok on the count of three lets pull together?"

Suddenly, Abominus splits back into the five individual Terrorcons again. They all have a faintly confused air about them. Hun-Grrr said, "From my position in the netherworld, I dreamed the dreams of the warrior god Abominus, and it they were dreams of rending and slaughter." He looks proudly around the rest of the room. "I see he has fought well. Know that he is the most powerful warrior in our tribe!"

Megatron grins at Hun-Grr. "You should have told us you were a combiner team." Of course he know that it is very improbable the Terrorcons know what he is talking about.

Cutthroat stretches his arms out widely. "...as if there was any doubt. None could defeat Abominus, Khan."

Resyke doesn't understand any of this, though he's glad CatsCradle is okay. "Netherworld? Huh?"

Hun-Grrr says, "It takes the five of us to call forth Abominus from the netherworld. We cannot be in this world when he is here." He looks over at Megatron, "Your words are strange. Are there others among who can call forth warrior gods? Abominus must defeat them, to prove that he is the mightiest!"

CatsCradle steps back, taking a deep breath. "Actually, I think I have a better idea. Resyke?" she calls. "Do you have any oil? Or could you chew it free?"

Ruse says, "... Devestator -and- Menasaur would wipe the floor with you Hun-Grr.. Menasaur especialy.Err you sure her might eat it Cats."

Resyke scurries over to the two femmes and the Sword In The Limb. "I guess I could chew it out.." he says, grinning.

CatsCradle beams at Resyke. "Just chew it loose. No need to chew it all the way out."

Resyke looks sideways at Ruse. "I'll /try/ not to eat the sword, miss" he remarks, grinning wider as he transforms

Megatron says, "Oh, there are others who can merge into a new one. However, some of them belong to our tribe and we will not allow you to fight against them. But why fight them anyway, they can be your brothers in arms. Join us, be our allies."

Hun-Grrr's optics blare with righteous fury, "Bah! Your words anger me! I must prove that Abominus is the most powerful of all warrior gods..." He looks at Megatron, "Hmm - you wish for the strength of Angselik at your side in future battles with chaos gods and sky-demons? Very well - battle is our strength and lifeblood. But know this - although you are the ruler of Upper Earth, I am the ruler of all Angselik and the caverns here!"

Megatron smiles. "Of course you will rule these caverns, Hun-Grr. I offer you being part of the Decepticon empire. Assist us in our fight and we will support you in yours.

Hun-Grrr nods, "Very well, Megatron. I will fight with you. May the realms of Upper and Lower Earth prosper due to the alliance made this day.

Resyke begins chewing on the fallen Guardian limb, occasionally breathing a cloud of acid from between his mandibles to soften the metal - but careful not to get any on the sword.

CatsCradle watches, smiling in relief. She leans against the sword, then begins to move it back and forth, working it free as the metal around it is eaten away. Finally, she gives one last tug and pulls it free. "/Thank/ you," she says fervently. "Thank you very much, Resyke."

Resyke waves his antennae. "No problem miss."

Ruse glances to Hun-Grr and then looks to Soundwave, "Is there anyway to reverse what has happend?",she asks suddenly.

Soundwave says, "Perhaps, Ruse. Perhaps some of the damage can be undone. Or perhaps self-repair will see to it in time. But too much tinkering with the cerebral circuitry will lose the memories and personalities that they have already established. Sometimes, things must take their own course."

Ruse nods and hms, "Still would like to go see this slaver of legend considering we are already this far bellow ground.

CatsCradle carefully wipes down her sword, checking the blade. /She/ may be covered with a layer of the floor-gunk, but the blade is clean when she sheathes it away. She gives another grin to Resyke, then makes her way over to Megatron, Soundwave and Ruse. "We should let the others know we're all right. I'm gathering since they haven't come storming in here, Gry didn't exactly stop by them on her way out. They're probably wondering what happened."  She adds in a mutter, “And this isn't the first time she's left us in the middle of a fight.”

Resyke scurries up onto the huge fallen limb, still absently chewing on scrap metal.

Soundwave nods to Cats, and looks toward the exit, where the others await.

CatsCradle gives another of her abbreviated shrug. "I'll go tell 'em we're all right," she murmurs and picks her way towards the exit


****
Angselik

Before you stretches a primitive kingdom of endless caverns and rifts that goes right down into the very depths of Cybertron. Strange slitherings can be heard in the depths as trans-organics crawl through the broken layers of the factory planet. This world is inhabited by strange, primitive transformers who spend their days battling the trans-organics and their nights drinking and celebrating their warrior prowess.

Macabre is now outside the entrance, watching those who exit. One can get a damn good look at her face, too... and not a bit has changed in that one area.

CatsCradle stops just outside the entrance. She studies Macabre's face for a moment. "Are you happier, here?" she asks gently.

Macabre blinks. Then blinks again. "HappiER?" she asks, bewildered entirely.

CatsCradle smiles ruefully, entirely at herself, and tries again. "You would rather be here, then in the upper world again?"

Macabre says, "...upper world? I have never been to the upper world before today."  She stares at CatsCradle oddly, thinking that this one may have some brains loose.

CatsCradle's face eases into an expression of understanding. "Forgive me," she murmurs. "You remind me of someone I knew. I thought perhaps you might be her."

Macabre stiffens her shield arm, standing proudly. "I am Macabre, Great Warrior of Angselik."

CatsCradle smiles at her. Pride. Something she never saw in Macabre before. "Yes. You are. And perhaps... you also bring great luck to Angselik, as well as your strength as a warrior."

Macabre looks at CatsCradle. "Luck...? No such thing. There is only skill."

CatsCradle brushes absently at the layer of floor-gunk on her arm. "Perhaps. But to say that luck doesn't exist would mean that I don't believe in miracles. And I've seen those happen often enough." She gives her another soft smile and begins to slip her way past the people who are left towards the remnants of the carcass and fire.

Macabre watches CatsCradle uncomfortably. She's got this tingling in the back of her head whenever people like her are around. She doesn't know what it means. She wants it to stop.


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