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Decepticon Raider in King Arthur's Court

5/19/01
Logfile from TFDD


Command Center

        This circular room was formerly the bridge when the base was a viable spaceship. Now used as the Command Center, it is dominated by the large central viewing screen. The screen is linked to the main computer system, and can display anything from energon production reports to tactical updates to topside weather information. The various other bridge control stations have been converted to monitor and control the various mechanisms and activities of the base. They curve around the room from the door to the central viewscreen.


CatsCradle silently walks in and takes her usual place, sitting on the edge of the console nearest the door.

Megatron takes the crystal. "Has he give you any further instructions according the data carrier, Ramjet?"

Rumble leaps out of Soundwave's tape compartment.

Soundwave says, "Potentially. It is unlike a reading I have encountered on this world before, and yet it is somewhat familiar."

Rumble stands on a chair and tries to get a closer look.

Ramjet shakes his coned head, as much as the neck bracing will allow , which isn’t much. "Negative, Commander. Only that it was too valuable to risk being intercepted and I was to deliver it personally and destroy it if I was captured."

CatsCradle murmurs something about just as long as it doesn't blow us up and smiles brightly

Soundwave wonders, "Do you have orders to return immediately, Ramjet?"

Ramjet frowns and glances at Soundwave, "Negative. I...er. Didn't ask what I was supposed to do now."

Megatron - again - turns to Soundwave. "Could you render more precisely what you mean with "familiar", Soundwave?" He puts the data crystal into the computer and enters his personal access code.

Rumble says, "Where's it comin' from?"

Ramjet turns to watch Megatron's screen from where he stands, but the commander’s back blocks his view and leaves Ramjet wondering what’s on the crystal that was so important it needed him to deliver it.

Soundwave nods to Megatron and turns back to his console, his fingers flickering rapidly over the keys to bring up a series of graphs. "Electromagnetic disturbances," he explains, “of the type that accompany shifts in a planet's natural magnetic patterns due to unknown disturbances. Source of the readings are her.:" He activates a map on a smaller side-screen that zooms in on a region in the northern European sector, specifically onto an island not far from the mainland.

Tempest slinks in...attracted again by the noise. She gives a searching, penetrating glance at Ramjet and tilts her head to try to determine what's going on. Her optics fall on the island cluster on the screen.

Ramjet quickly looses interest in the unseen report and instead looks at the map Soundwave is displaying.

Ramjet sideglances at Tempest as he feels her gaze on him and frowns some more, wondering what’s up with her.

Soundwave steps back a little to give Megatron a better view.

Rumble sidles up to Ramjet and whispers, "Don't mind /her/, she hates /everyone./" with a gesture at Tempest.

Megatron reads over the data he got from Ramjet, frowning, while he listens to Soundwave at the same time. Removing the crystal from the computer again, he decides: "I want a team to check out the anomalies."

Tempest either doesn't hear Rumble or else is ignoring him. Her attention is now on the map. "Hunting time?" she asks, somewhat eagerly.

Ramjet looks down at Rumble and nods. replying in a not very subtle grumble, "Why? and who did she loose a fight with?"

Starscream saunters into the room, like some kind of royalty. He gazes down his nose at everyone else, including Megatron. "What's this?" he demands with a sweeping gesture at the map.

Megatron frowns. "What do you suppose it is, Starscream?"

Ramjet's stance straightens slightly as Starscream enters, as though he's expecting trouble. "You...I thought you were in a Cell or something."

Rumble shrugs. "Beats me Ramjet. Though as for the "Fight" question, I would have to answer Defcon..." And he looks over at the yellow Seeker, who seems to be looking a bit more in his direction as if she'd heard them.

Starscream laughs. "There is no cell built that could hold /me./” He glances at Megatron. "It is /obviously/ a new power source...for /us/ to take!"

CatsCradle leans forward. "It's not going to blow up the world, is it? We've gone through that a few times already."

Starscream studies Soundwave's readings. "Most unusual...but no, CatsCradle, I do not think these are dangerous. The energy fluctuations are very steady, and seem very old."

Soundwave regards the energy readings graph on screen and says inflectionlessly, "Unknown, CatsCradle." Not very comforting, is it?

Ramjet's fists clench and he evidently seems uncomfortable with Starscream being around. Probably still bitter about that whole, shooting him in the back thing.

Megatron says, "Exactly, Starscream. Take a few Decepticons and take a look at it. I await your report in 22,000 astroseconds."

Ramjet however has the good sense to stand still and shut up and contents himself with glowering at the air commander from under his cone.

Divefire walks into the command centre a few moments after the customary summoning, late and not too bothered about it. Very unsurprisingly, he takes position next to Cats and plays catch up.

Starscream nods, and looks at the assembly. "Ramjet, Ravage, CatsCradle, Rumble, come with me!

Soundwave looks over toward Ramjet. "If we have detected these readings, it is not unlikely that the Autobots have as well."

Starscream walks out, expecting the others to follow him...but shooting glances over his shoulders /just to make sure/ he's being obeyed.

CatsCradle leans next to Diver. "Strange power source, going to check it out, loveyouseeyoubye." She hops off the console.

Ravage hops out of Soundwave and is glad to follow Starscream’s commands.... from a distance behind so he can take bullets and laser fire too.

Ramjet seems to cheer up at the mention of possible conflict and after a moments pause, follows, grumbling to himself.

Divefire casts a blinking gaze after Cats, not having time to launch a protest as she walks after the missile with a mouth.

Megatron says, "Tempest will also accompany you, Starscream."

Soundwave, for his part, returns to studying the readings with interest.
"There is indeed something familiar about this, but it is not quite the
same."

Tempest walks out...then stalks back in, glaring around.

Megatron says, "Stop talking in riddles, Soundwave."

Divefire shakes his head slightly, putting aside the fact that his mate is
off with the biggest idiot in the Universe and steps over to one of the
consoles. He takes a moment to study the data and passes a glance to
Soundwave, but waits for a moment to question the more enlightened
communicator.

Soundwave shakes his head. "Observe the energy pattern, Commander. It is not
the same, and yet similar, to that which accompanied our unexpected visitor
from the future on Cybertron, before our launch. If I were to guess - and I
did not wish to do so in the presence of the majority of the troops, for it
is uncalled-for speculation without much proof - but I would suspect this
energy reading is a chronal disturbance."

Tempest growls, "I'm /not/ taking orders from him," as if defying anyone
there to say anything about it as she slinks into a corner and curls up on a
bench.

Megatron says, "A natural disturbance?"

Soundwave says, "It appears to be so. As Starscream noted, the reading is
quite stable, merely increasing in power for an unknown reason."

Divefire shakes his head slightly and glances up to Megatron and Soundwave.
"Why do I get the feeling that Starscream will find a way to make it
unstable?"

Megatron murmurs something that sounds a bit like: "I hope he's
careful...", but it is not quite understandable.

Soundwave says, "Ravage is reporting activity in the area, but Autobot
contact has not been confirmed."

Tempest lies low, hoping not to be in trouble for disobedience, listening.
Chronal disturbance...she doesn’t know what that is, but also does not feel
it is a good time to ask.

Megatron says, "Put the base on alert. If Optimus Prime shows up, I want to
be there."

***

Circle of Standing Stones

     Like many similar structures all over England, this is an ancient ring of large stones elevated into standing position, spaced at regular intervals. In the centuries since its construction, some of the stones have fallen over; however, the monolith leading into the mound in the center of the ring is still standing. Legend has it that the site is built on ley lines - energy lines running through the earth itself. There may be some truth to the story, for faint but distinctively unusual energy readings emit from the mound.


Starscream leads the Decepticons in a formation over the island known as Great Britain. "Down there!" he gestures, with a rock of his wings, and descends.

Ramjet lands, after searching for the energy source for hours he's running low on fuel.

Starscream tries not to show how tired he is. Rumble pants, "Are we almost there? We've been flyin' around in circles for hours." Starscream retorts, "I know what I'm doing!"

Ravage flies down and lands beside Rumble... looking around with cautious and alert optics.

Ravage 's ears dart up in alert.... he looks around trying to pinpoint where something he hears is coming from.

Ramjet mutters, "You better." and trudges after them, on foot now. "It'd be easier without all this fog."

Rumble says, "Hey. Ravage says he hears Autobot engines."

Ramjet raises his weapons and glances around. "where and how many?"

CatsCradle lands lightly. She doesn't seem to show the same weariness as the others; she is very fuel-efficient. At Rumble's warning, she pops her wrist lasers.

Starscream looks almost panicked for a moment, peering through the fog...then he powers up his lasers and says authoritatively, "Follow me!"

Ramjet checks the safety's on his armlasers, and finds they were never engaged

Ravage darts off to a small hill to see if he can locate it even better... he seems not worried but Very alert.... possibly something heavy is approaching...

Ramjet follows Starscream, checking behind them as the party moves out.

Rumble says, "Two Bots, Ravage says...a truck and some kinda' heavy armoured machine."

CatsCradle mutters, "Joy." She follows the others silently through the fog. "How far ahead?"

Ramjet says, "Just like the Autobots to wait till we're low on energy then attack!"

A sudden plasma blast answers one of the questions...the heavy triangular outline of Warpath wheels out of the gloom!

Ramjet ducks as the plasma blast passes close by, "Incoming!"

Ramjet hits the dirt and shoots back, in what he assumes is the right directions but his laser blasts are wasted shooting up empty foggy air.

Ravage drops to his chest... and rumbles annoyed.

Warpath isn't alone...from another direction, direction, Hoist comes barreling out of the dimness, blasting, trying to flank the Decepticons!

CatsCradle melts away into the swirling fog, crouching near to the cover of the ground

Starscream starts blasting at the Autobots, but his lasers are very weak. "I haven't got enough power left to nullify a simple circuit! Decepticons, we have to get out of here!" Hoist zigzags, easily avoiding the shots, and coming in closer at Ramjet!

Ramjet doesn’t let the lack of visibility stop him, standing back up he enthusiastically sprays laser fire into the fog, aiming at where he guesses they might be. "Come on then!"

Hoist faces Ramjet head on!

Ramjet sights Hoist too late and is run into, knocking him flying, "Look oOOF!"

Rumble's laser runs out of power and stops shooting. "Starscream, I'm almost on redline!"

CatsCradle frowns slightly at Ramjet's random firing. "Great. Let's hope he doesn't shoot us by accident." She melts out of the fog near Starscream. "I detect a power source over there." She points at the dim form of a circle of stones through the fog.

"Energy?" Starscream asks. Rumble perks up. "Yeah," Rumble says, "inside those stones!"

Starscream orders, "Decepticons, let's go!" and leads the way into the mound in the center of the circle of stones, firing off weak null-ray blasts at Hoist and Warpath as they withdraw.

Ramjet lands heavily on his back...and tries to shoot back but his lasers just splutter. "I'll cover you...My lasers might be out of shots but I can still ram them!"

Dragon's Mound

     Walking through the monolith, the traveler finds him/herself inside a large cave. The cave floor is cleared of all rubble and debris, suggesting some degree of artificial construction. In the center of the cave is a rock altar with arcane runes engraved into its surface.

Rumble looks around the weird looking interior. "What is this place?"

Ramjet is rammed by Warpath and tumbles down into the mound, his jet mode crashing into the stones by the entrance

There's a massive blast from outside. Warpath has knocked down the monolith supporting the cave mouth. In addition to the damage Ramjet's crashing form caused, the damage is too much and the stones come crashing down!

A few, last scattered stones tumble from the ceiling and join the rubble. The way out is completely blocked.

Ramjet transforms back to robot mode and scrambles clear of the entrance. "We're trapped!"

CatsCradle stops in the middle of her examination of the altar. "Oh... oh dear, that can't be good..."

Starscream drags himself out of the fallen rocks. "This place is our tomb!" he says angrily...and with...fear?

Ramjet clambers to his feet, re-aligning his head from the collision, "I only just changed heads last cycle."

CatsCradle says, "wait." She thinks a minute. "Can our radios reach out? All we have to do is call for help, right?""

Rumble looks to CatsCradle and notices the altar. "What's this?" He walks forward. "Starscream, there's energy /here!" He touches the first of the weird runes on its surface.

Starscream says, "CatsCradle...send out a..." he looks disgusted. "Distress call."

Ramjet scowls at Starscream, "If I'm gonna die I don't want to spend eternity in here with you." He grabs the nearest boulder and tries to lift it...with no success. "Ngggg. Too low on energy."

CatsCradle says, "Calm down, Ramjet. No sense in busting a circuit or two."

Starscream hears Rumble's words. "Energy?" In one bound he's across the room, using his arm to sweep Rumble clear. "Out of the way!" Starscream's hands seek out the runes.

CatsCradle transmits to Divefire: " um... love, we seem to be kinda trapped in a cave. I think we're gonna need some help digging us out."

Ramjet frowns, but stops his futile efforts and turns to see what Rumble’s found.

Starscream says, as if by means of explanation, "It could be dangerous. As your leader I must take the risk." It's as if he's trying to appease Ramjet. But under his breath, Rumble hears the Seeker mutter, "Besides, /I/ need it more!" Starscream's hands greedily activate rune after rune.

Starscream activates the last rune....

Ramjet says, "Hey! the entrance isn’t blocked any more!""

CatsCradle finishes sending the distress call and watches Starscream uneasily. "You know, this area is known for strange happenings. The humans sometimes call it magical and --" She blinks at the open entrance. "um.... yeah, like that..."

Ramjet takes a few paces down the repaired entrance way, "...and the Autobots are gone!"

Ramjet points his useless lasers at the entrance, outside its a lovely sunny day.

Starscream says, "Who /cares,/ the /point/ is we can leave...so let's get out of here!" he says, as the strange energy fades away.

Ramjet realizes Starscream has a point and so follows

CatsCradle murmurs, "Yeah, but I'd really rather not get shot on our way out..."

Ramjet nods at Cats, "You stay here. We'll check it out. Might be an Autobot trick."

CatsCradle frowns at the entrance. "And what happened to all that fog...?"

Medieval Fields

     Is it your imagination, or are some of the stones that were previously on the ground, now standing upright? This is a large area of fields and common ground, separated by hedgerows, with the odd patch of forest. Nothing at first seems unusual; however, upon close examination, any signs of modern technology - highways, machinery, high-rises - are distinctly absent.


Ramjet says, "I don't see anything. looks all clear"

Ramjet says, "at least that fogs gone too."

CatsCradle steps cautiously out. "There's no way that fog should have cleared off so quickly

Rumble nods. "Weird."

Ramjet says, "If you say so. I'm not a weatherbot"

CatsCradle looks up at Starscream. "I sent a call to Divefire, and he never answered back. That's..." She looks around uneasily. "That's not like him."

Starscream looks around. "You're right, CatsCradle...there's something different about this place."

Rumble wanders ahead to scout around.

Ramjet looks up at the clear blue sky and squints, mind wandering.

Rumble sees something and calls back to the others, "Hey, I see somethin'....looks like some weird lookin' Autobots!"

Rumble yelps, "And they're attackin' me! Help!"

Ramjet runs to where the shouts come from and leaps up the incline, landing just behind Rumble

CatsCradle draws her sword (good ol' blade, no energy required), and runs towards Rumble's voice

Two strange armoured forms with long non-energy lances are barreling towards Rumble!

Ramjet suddenly apears infront of the mounted knights...the one closes to him is understandably surprised and as his horse rears up, Ramjet headbutts the rider, knocking him clean off it and stunning the armoured human.

Starscream lands with an authoritative stance in front of the riders. They rein in their horses, which rear and snort in surprise, but they are good enough horsemen to keep their mounts from running wild.

Rumble laughs. "Autobots are scrap no matter /how/ weird they look...you broke it, Ramjet!" and grins.

CatsCradle skids to a stop behind Rumble, blinking... "Those aren't Autobots," she says quietly. "Those are humans in armor on horses. What, is this a historical reenactment?"

Ramjet clearly expecting more of a fight, blinks in surprise and pokes the horse with a finger, "Inferior construction. I only bashed this one once and it came right apart!"

Starscream looks speculatively at the armoured figures...reaches down and plucks the helmet right off of one's head, revealing a human face underneath. "Not Autobots, Rumble, but humans /pretending/ to be Autobots."

Ramjet kicks the human at his feet for good measure, the knights armour making a satisfying *clang* noise.

The helmetless human says, "Sir Wagond of Blackthorne pretends to nothing. Who art thou?" He looks at Catscradle. "Re-inactment? This is a war party...Art thou allies of the Red Knight?"

CatsCradle shakes her head. "No, humans pretending to be soldiers from the past. There are groups that gather and do reenactments of historical battles, stuff like that."

The human's companion says, "And I am Sir Wulfe..." He, for one, seems scared of the Decepticons, and stays behind the bolder Sir Wagond, though he mutters, "We could use allies like these..."

Ramjet says, "I never heard of any rednight. Sounds like an Autobot tho."

Starscream announces pompously, "And I am Starscream of Cybertron." Rumble takes the helmet from Starscream and looks at it. "Heh. Nice shape but not very modern." Sir Wagond, as if insulted, says huffily (snatching it back,) "It was made this very year."

CatsCradle says, "The reinactors usually make their own armor, in the same ways it was made centuries ago..." but she looks around, still uneasy. "There are no cities... we should be able to see cities in the distance. Smog, pollution, something."

Rumble sneers, "What year was that?" Sir Wagond replies, “543 Anno Domine, of course", as if this answer were evident.

Starscream considers what CatsCradle says. "You wouldn't suppose..."

Ramjet doesn’t get it, unfamiliar with local dates, and stares blankly at the humans

CatsCradle's optics go wide... "Five..." She whirls, looking for anything remotely modern, then murmurs into her radio, her voice calling for Divefire more and more frantically. She looks up at Starscream. "My... my radio doesn't seem to be working. Can someone else try calling earthbase?"

Ramjet growls, "Mines out too. I'm getting nothing but static."

Starscream says, "It suits my purposes to help you against this...Red Knight. Take us to your base." Starscream looks at Catscradle with a conspiratorial grin. "Relax, my dear. That mound was some sort of time travel device. And /that/ means we have 1,551 years before we have to worry about Autobots or that bungler Megatron!" Starscream, in fact, couldn't look more pleased!

CatsCradle says tightly, "I'd rather not wait that long to see Diver again."

Ramjet says, "travel device?..." he trails off as he follows the others still not getting it. "But we didn’t go anywhere."

Starscream says, "Ramjet...we're in another time. Like falling through a hole." He frowns at Catscradle. "Regardless, /first/ we have to get some energy somewhere! /Then/ we can worry about getting home...or about conquering this world!"

There's a snapping noise in the bushes. Rumble yelps, "A spy!" Sir Wulfe gallops off after a running human figure.

Ramjet mutters, "I didn’t fall, that loudmouth tank pushed me."

CatsCradle rubs her forehead, obviously fighting to remain calm. "But... it didn't take energy to activate that time machine. All you did was push those runes, right? Can't we just go home?"

Sir Wulfe rides back to report, "It was the Red Knight's miserable daughter! She's gone to tell her father no doubt!" Sir Wagond laughs. "Let her--what danger can she do, when We have these giants on our side!" And the two armoured humans lead the Transformers towards their castle. Starscream says to Catscradle, "Let's get something straight here, all right? /I'm/ the leader here and I give the orders! If you ever want to go home again you will help me capture this world.../then/ you can leave if you like!"

Ramjet points at Starscream, "Apparently he has other plans."

CatsCradle nods slowly, her expression blank. "I wasn't arguing. I was just offering options," she says softly. She sheathes her sword and follows them, but not without looking backwards at the cave.

****
Command Center (Present Day)

Soundwave's optics flicker a little brighter again as he telepathically
checks in with Ravage.

Divefire looks down to the console again and starts to tap away at the
keyboard, keeping himself busy for the moment and really trying not to
think.

Soundwave's distant expression snaps back into focus on the here-and-now
with a momentarily brighter flash from his optic band. "It is as I expected,
Megatron. The exploration team appears to be under attack and is currently
trapped in a cave."

ChopShop arrives from Access Corridor.

CatsCradle transmits to Divefire: " um... love, we seem to be kinda trapped
in a cave. I think we're gonna need some help digging us out."

Megatron says, "Decepticons, ready for combat, we will join our troops on
the battle field!"

Soundwave nods to Megatron, anxious to join his creations.

Divefire frowns at the information but doesn't say anything, rather he taps
harder at the keyboard the bolts a little as his radio goes off. "Sounds
like they've had a cave in. I'll be coming too then."

Megatron says, "To the air!"

Access Corridor
Armory
Training Complex
Engine Room
Conning Tower
Atlantic Ocean <Central>

        Wings fold out as engines emerge and body panels slide into a far
more aerodynamic form, revealing an Orbital Interceptor.

Atlantic Ocean <Eastern Hemisphere>
Cool-Temperate Zone <Europe>
Island Cluster

Soundwave flies alongside Megatron

Divefire for once takes the point of this formation, obviously itching to
get to the group.

Megatron heads towards the stones, looking for the enemy and his troops.

Below on the ground, it's possible to see a circle of standing stones, but
no trace of the Decepticon team. Instead, a whole group of Autobots is
milling about the area, and some of the stones seem to have been recently
damaged, crumbled into rubble.

Megatron says, "Decepticons, attack!!"

Megatron fires right into the Autobot group.

Soundwave unleashes a bright burst of plasma fire from his shoulder cannon
as he soars downwards.

Divefire doesn't need to be told twice and his nose points for the ground
as his engines power to their fullest. With a surge of speed he races
towards the ground, nose lasers and underwing rifles blasting away at the
Autobots.

Tempest draws her longblades and lands atop one of the monoliths, hissing at
the Autobots. Warpath and Hoist are dragging some of the rubble free....

The Autobots below are startled to suddenly be under attack, as Megatron's
first shot strikes its target. They respond quickly, firing back.

Megatron says, "Soundwave, any readings of Starscream and the others?"

Megatron angrily returns the incoming fire.

Soundwave comes to a landing, firing at the nearest target. He replies to
Megatron, "No trace of them. I have lost contact with Rumble and Ravage - in
a sense."

Divefire growls as he transforms, not bothering to dodge the incoming fire
of the Autobots and just picking the biggest group of them to pile into,
electro sword drawn. "Where are they?!" He bellows to a non-descript group,
launching into a full attack against them.

Lucky Autobots - they somehow avoided Megatron's blasts this time.
Prime manages to avoid Megatron's shot that time, and fires back at him, as
does Jazz who fires on Soundwave, forcing the blue Decepticon to duck out of
the way and his own shot to miss. Divefire's attack sends several minibots
scrambling backwards, though.

Megatron shoots again, while asking: "You lost contact? That is impossible!"

Soundwave replies without inflection, "There are several possible
explanations." He fires another blast of plasma light, this time at Prowl.

Megatron, hit in the shoulder by an Autobot blast, decides to take cover as
well.

Tempest strafes the Autobots with lasers, then ducks behind some stones,
coming out every once in a while to spray the Bots with laser fire

Divefire’s optics flare a dangerously dark green on hearing the news. "No..."
He whispers as several more Autobots try to group attack the quickly going
beserk seeker. "No!" And again he goes into a fast succession of attacks
against the Autobots, giving no thought for his own defense.

Megatron grumbles. "Tell me the most likely.”

Prowl's return fire scorches Soundwave’s armor, and he too moves swiftly behind  cover, noting quietly to Megatron, "I would know if they had been destroyed. I received no such sensation. But I cannot sense their minds otherwise."  Soundwave says, "The energy readings may interfere, or-" he pauses to fire off a blast at Prime, who has transformed and is barreling right toward their location."

Hoist and Warpath have succeeded in clearing a path through the rubble.
Spike gestures to the Autobots from Hoist's cab as the green truck follows
Warpath into the cave.

Sunstreaker and Sideswipe track Divefire's movements, setting up a net of
laserfire in which they hope to catch the swift flyer in the crossfire.

Megatron remembers Chasm's destiny. "The time anomaly..."

Soundwave's shot glances harmlessly off Prime's chrome as the truck roars
toward him and Megatron.

Megatron shoots after Hoist and Warpath, hoping to keep them away from the
stones, but misses.

Ironhide catches sight of ChopShop and fires a burst of artillary at him.

Divefire growls as the lambo brothers once more make his life more difficult
then it needs to be. He's about to set about them when the familiar sound of
the Autobot leaders engine fills his audios. With a glance he notes his
position and one very decisive thought comes to mind. "This ends now!" He
growls and transforms again.

        Panals reform, locking together as mass shrinks, finally coming
together as a Mk III Trans-Am.

Megatron jerks around hearing the truck's engine's roar. He grasps Soundwave
by the arm and leaps to the air before Prime crashes into them.

Ironhide's shot misses as the Insecticon is too quick for him.

Divefire accelerates towards the Autobot leader as fast as he can over the
ground, rapidly gaining speed to intercept the semi truck in what might be a
very futile gesture. His speed grows exponentially and at the last moment
he leaps into the air and goes to cut Prime through before he can down
Megatron and Soundwave...

Cliffjumper and Brawn meanwhile have targeted Tempest, trying to goad her
out into the open to get a better shot at her.

ChopShop transforms into his Mesh-Beetle mode.

Soundwave is dragged upward by Megatron just in time, as Divefire's attack
misses the Autobot leader.

ChopShop jumps at Ironhide’s face and tries to bite it

Megatron shoots down at the truck. "This is going to be your end, Prime!" he
thunders in anger.

Soundwave's own flight engines kick in as he twists in the air, then coming
down atop the mound that was recently blocked with rubble before Warpath and
Hoist cleared it. From that vantage point he fires down at Prime once again.

Ironhide is thrown backwards by ChopShop's assault, but his
self-preservation instincts save him from the slashing jaws as he struggles
away.

Tempest continues her guerrilla tactics, skulking in the shadows. Her shots
are usually wild, but they give the Autobots one more thing to concentrate
on instead of their current opponents. Once, Cliffjumper gets a bit /too
close/ and narrowly misses losing his head to a longblade.

The huge truck is hit in the side by Megatron's fusion blast and spins sideways, the armor smoking. For a moment he pauses as though stunned, then
the Autobot leader transforms to robot mode and raises his weapon toward
Megatron. Making as though to fire, he instead suddenly turns and fires in
Soundwave's direction toward the mound.

Megatron says, "No!!"

Megatron shoots at the Autobot leader again, hoping to hit him in time.

The minibots are kept busy by Tempest's unpredictable shots, while Ironhide
retaliates against ChopShop with a blast of supercooled nitrogen, hoping to
slow the quick Insecticon.

Megatron says, "Soundwave, take cover!""

Divefire skids to a halt after managing to miss his first pass at Prime, but
with a fast turn he follows up his first attack and Megatron's blast with a
typical Autobot style attack:  ram the big ones legs out.

Prime gets struck in the back once again by Megatron's blast, at the same
moment as Soundwave leaps away from the mound. Prime's weapon goes off and the shot goes wild, the full force of the energy striking the stone
structure and sending another avalanche of boulders down over the entrance.

ChopShop tries to catch up with prime and readies all his weapon at full blast
at him!

Sideswipe and Sunstreaker's efforts weren't enough to stop Divefire, who
makes sure Prime is thrown totally off his feet. That alone saved him from
also being hit by ChopShop's attack - but it also gives Ironhide a free shot
at the Insecticon.

Soundwave flies upward from the damaged mound and sends out a radio message.

Divefire uses his momentum after driving through Prime to focus on
Sunstreaker and Sideswipe, using his speed to try and dodge the incoming
fire of the Autobots brothers, the intentions of the black Trans am seem
rather clear. Hurt the Autobots, a lot.

Megatron, in wild fury, attacks the Autobot leader directly: no more blasts
- with increasing speed he flies toward Prime...

<Earth> Soundwave says, "I am sensing fluctuations in the energy field of this area.  Suggest withdrawal and luring the Autobots away, so we can investigate more closely.  Force them to retreat due to extensive damage to one of their members."

ChopShop is trying to grab Optimus Prime’s back trailer and destroy some of
Prime

Prime somehow manages to avoid the multiple attacks, showing more agility
than something of his size should. "Whatever you're up to out here,
Megatron, you won't get away with it!" he calls to his nemesis.

ChopShop transforms into his Robot mode.

ChopShop fires at Prime’s back

ChopShop says, "I hit! I got it! Prepare to meet your doom,  Optimus
Prime!"

Megatron nearly crashes into the ground. Maybe a healthy shock to get his
temper under control...

Prime this time *is* struck by ChopShop's blast, and the blue optics flash a
little brighter in pain and anger. But the other Autobots begin to close in
to defend their leader, and there are more of them than there are
Decepticons. Stray shots keep hitting the standing stones and chipping off
pieces, and one shot actually sends one of the monoliths crashing to the
ground, where it cracks into three huge fragments.

<Earth> Megatron says, "Decepticons, slow withdraw to north-west - take
care the enemy will not lose track of us."

Soundwave meanwhile is still hovering upward, firing down, but more intent
on luring the Autobots away.

ChopShop says, "I’ll try to beat it at close range!"

Prime commands, "Autobots - don't let them escape! We have to know what
they're after out here."

ChopShop is trying to run to a one on one battle against Prime.

Prime notices ChopShop rushing at him and swings a fist backwards, sending
the Insecticon flying away from him.

Divefire manages to completely miss hitting Sunstreaker and Sideswipe as they
transform and try and give chase, which is great actually as Divefire does as
ordered and heads for the north west at non-Autobot-losing speeds.

Prime transforms, heading off after the Decepticons as they pull away from
the standing stones area.

ChopShop says, "hey, Divefire needs some help with your toy cars."

Megatron fires at Prime again.

ChopShop is firing at Sideswipe.

Prime swerves, and the shot strikes the ground, throwing up clumps of sodden
earth and grass. Those Autobots who have not yet transformed, now do so and
take off after the Decepticons in the air.

Divefire shouts back up to ChopShop as he narrowly dodges an energy blast.
"Only if they hit me!"

Soundwave notices the withdrawal, and slows in flight.

<Earth> Soundwave says, "I will attempt to return to the stone ring
unnoticed, to see if I can detect something."

Soundwave leaves the others to lose the Autobots in the distance, since he
has gotten no counter-order from Megatron. Diving behind a stand of trees,
he waits until the group goes past, and then makes his way back to the
stones as unobtrusively as he can.

ChopShop fires a burst to hit Sideswipes and ricochet to hit prime again

The Autobots are having quite a good bit of luck avoiding the Decepticons'
shots, and are keeping pace with the flyers from along the ground.

Soundwave lands in the middle of the ruined circle of stones, and looks
around as though intently listening for something. In the distance he can
still hear the occasional whine of a laser weapon, but that's not what he's
listening for.

Meanwhile, back with the action... The main Decepticon force carries on
playing dodge the laser blast with the Autobots, all the while leading them
further through the English country side, which isn't so good considering
the state of the road in this area.

Megatron isn't the best in hitting his targets today. Maybe it is because he
is worried about the missing Decepticons? If so - he doesn't show.

<Earth> Soundwave says, "Stone circle is cleared of Autobots currently.  Am
beginning my investigation. Still no direct link to Rumble or Ravage."

Soundwave begins to clear away some of the crumbled boulders that have again
blocked the entrance to the central mound.

Over the noise of lasers, engines, and the sounds of horns of the human
traffic dives off the road to avoid the rolling battle of the Autobots and
Decepticons a whine of fan jet engines can be heard. To those familiar to
the area, they'd recognize it as that of the local naval bases Harrier Jump
Jet Squadrons. However this if the first time since the Falklands that all
of them have been deployed and the sigh and noise is unmissable as 24 fully
armed attack jets seek their targets.

<Earth> Megatron says, "We'll keep the Autobot busy, Soundwave."

Tempest perks up immediately at the sound of jump jet turbines!

Soundwave picks up in the distance the sound of Earth machinery. He looks up
for a moment, but the strangeness of the energy readings here, prompt him to
keep working. Soon he's got a passageway cleared into the mound, and steps
inside the dimness of the cave.

The Harriers take a view of the situation then quickly break off into two
formations of 12. The first squad seeking the Autobots and the second the
Decepticons. With well practiced military precision they chose targets and
after a moment the hiss and roar of missiles drowns out that of the fan
turbines jets.

<Earth> Soundwave says, "Megatron, when you have disposed of your pursuers, you might find this of interest."

Tempest turns her head to Megatron and seems somewhat disappointed
somehow...and then she says quietly, "Human airforce. Of course."

<Earth> Megatron says, "Withdraw maneuver Beta! (Quick disappearing in all
directions)"

        Wings fold out as engines emerge and body panels slide into a far
more aerodynamic form, revealing an Orbital Interceptor.

<Earth> Megatron says, "We will re-assemble at the stone formation."

Divefire quickly transforms on the order and kicks his engines to full
again, the massive thrust just pushing him clear as a missiles blows up where
he was. Not wasting any time he heads south and away from the Ariel
melee... And unwittingly closer to the naval base where the attack jets came
from.

Megatron quickly withdraws.

With the Deceptions quickly withdrawing past the Harrier's capacity to
pursue, they focus their intents on the Autobots. As the Decepticons leave
the sound of Optimus Prime's voice rings out over the sounds of the laser rifles and missiles being shot on each side,  pleading to the humans to cease their assault.

Tempest dives on the jump-jets. Their vertical capabilities and air jets
assisting their tight turns don't do much to help them, since Tempest seems
to know how they will move...she hesitates for the longest time before she
finally opens fire.

<Earth> Megatron says, "To the stones for re-assembling."

****
543 AD
Red Knight's Jousting Ground

     Welcome to a medieval tournament! Flags fly from gaily coloured awnings; people in rough peasant dress crowd the bleachers. There is a special gallery set aside for those members of the nobility. In front of the stands there is a clear patch of ground where the tourney will take place. The Red Knight's castle stands proudly in the background.

Starscream, Rumble and the other Decepticons are crouching in hiding behind some trees. We are Sir Wagond's secret weapon...

Ramjet gets the occasional peek at the tournament tho and seems impressed by the humans desire to hurt each other.

Ramjet mutters to Rumble, "Reminds me of my academy days."

Peering through the bushes the Decepticons can see the humans parading around in magnificent finery. A well-built human in red armour, with flowing blond hair and beard, must be the infamous Red Knight. He is followed by a girl in a blue dress--whom Rumble recognizes as the spying daughter from the day before.

Rumble mutters, "That bigmouth girl better not blab that we're here." Starscream says, "Quiet you. We wait for Sir Wagond's signal. Then we help Sir Wagond win the red Knight's kingdom...then we take /both/ kingdoms from under Sir Wagond's snooty nose!"

CatsCradle murmurs, "you know, horses are pretty spooky critters. We could just jump out, scare the horses, the horses run away or dump their riders, end of battle.

Sir Wagond is carrying on a discussion with the Red Knight, with a lot of posturing and flamboyant gestures. Words float back...the Red Knight is trying to bring about a peaceful solution, but Sir Wagond demands a duel. The Red Knight reluctantly agrees to meet him on the field of honour. Sir Wagond grins. "Not me...my champions. Sir Rumble, and Sir Ramjet!"

Ramjet kicks the tree infront of him down, busting out into view.

Starscream says, "This chivalrous garbage is making me nauseous, CatsCradle...I'm tempted to forget it...but for now, we'll play along with Sir Wagond."

CatsCradle tilts her head. "If they call me Sir CatsCradle, can I step on them?"

Rumble leaps forward, clutching a giant shield emblazoned with a Decepticon logo! He laughs at the shocked humans all around him. "Come on Ramjet...Transform and let's show them what we've got!"

Starscream chuckles, "Be my guest!"

Ramjet poses for the crowd. trying to look medieval. Then transforms. and revs his turbines.

CatsCradle mutters, "I can't quite believe I just said that..." She is torn between being in a really bad mood, terror at being trapped in another time... and pure fascination at the events around her.

Rumble climbs up on Ramjet's wing and sits astride his nose, grabbing a lance from Starscream. "Taxi forward my noble steed," he says with a grin at Ramjet. "Let's show these humans what a fight's all about!"

The Red Knight runs in the opposite direction.

Ramjet growls, "Hey! watch where your putting your feet. It says no step for a reason ya know."

CatsCradle chuckles at the fleeing knight, amused in spite of herself.

Rumble taunts the human, "Hey, come back! Don't ya wanna rumble with Rumble!"

Ramjet , still growling about being referred to as a 'steed', taxis forwards, lining up on the field of combat.

Starscream sounds satisfied. "If he flees, we win by default." He mutters, "Good, because I'm low on power."

Then...horror of horrors...The Red Knight is back and he's not alone. He has a most unusual mount of his own...a 25 foot high red tank. Warpath.

Ramjet says, "Hey...that tank looks familiar."

CatsCradle mutters, "Joy. We can't even go back in time without the Autobots tagging along."

Rumble erks, "It's Warpath!" he flinches back...but Ramjet beneath him keeps going!

Starscream curses, "NO! This is MY world! Can't I do /anything/ without the Autobots wrecking it?" He shrills, "KILL THEM, RAMJET!"

Ramjet indeed accelerates, heading straight for the tank. "I owe him from before."

CatsCradle shakes her head. "And that means Hoist is around here somewhere, too.

The Red Knight and Warpath hit Rumble and Ramjet hard, knocking Rumble off his perch back through Ramjet's cockpit glass, and bashing Ramjet's nose in!

Starscream curses at losing the joust. "That's it...I've had it with this chivalrous nonsense!" Starscream /will not/ accept defeat! Striding forward, he notices the Red Knight's daughter shaking her finger in Sir Wagond's face. He seizes the girl and announces, "Red Knight...surrender your kingdom or never see your precious daughter again!"

Ramjet 's front nosewheel gives out and he slews into the ground, smashing thru the central barrier of the jousting strip.

CatsCradle closes her optics for a brief give-me-patience second. "Oh, dear..."

Starscream turns to fly away, tossing the girl into the air, catching her into his cockpit. "Decepticons, follow me!" Then, out from behind a tent barrels Hoist, right at CatsCradle!

Rumble watches the Red Knight stand, stricken and aghast...then runs as Warpath charges him and Ramjet.

Ramjet transforms back to robot mode, slowly, tossing Rumble off him and pointing after Starscream, "Hey! How come he's got enough energy left to fly?"

Rumble points to Starscream. "He hasn't...look!" Sure enough, Starscream has /just barely/ gotten airborne when his wings stall...he doesn't have enough speed to stay airborne...and he touches down, slewing wildly over the ground surface, the girl still pounding on his cockpit glass.

CatsCradle dodges to one side, aiming her wrist lasers out of sheer habit, then remembers, swears and backs away, hoping that Hoist is about as weaponless as she is. She draws her sword, still backing away

Hoist and Warpath try to flank the Decepticons, but /they're/ low on power too, and succeed only in crashing into one another. Evidently Hoist is in no mood to risk an encounter with Catscradle's blade.

Ramjet doesn’t fancy being overrun by the tank again and grabs Rumble's shoulder, yanking him along as he runs after Starscream, "Lets get outa here!"

Rumble couldn't agree more!

CatsCradle backs one more step away from Hoist, then turns and runs with the others

Medieval Fields
Castle Blackthorne

     Castle Blackthorne is an imposing but regal structure constructed of grey limestone. Four walls, each with a flat-topped tower, enclose a square castle keep. There is a drawbridge in the northern wall overtop of a deep moat. Parapets rise like square teeth against the sky.

Rumble tosses the girl, Nimue, into a tower prison, despite Sir Wagond's protests.

Ramjet leans against one of the castle walls, kneckered.

Ramjet says, "What’s your plan now, oh mighty leader."

Starscream mutters, "We need more power...Ramjet, Go make those miserable peasants build a giant turbine. They're still afraid of us, we can use that to our advantage."

Starscream says, "We build a generator to give us the energy we need." He looks down at Sir Wulfe. "Bring me all the gold and precious metals in the castle!"

Ramjet says, "If we don't find some energy to steal soon, we're finished."

Sir Wagond complains to Starscream, "What do you think you're doing? That gold is /mine,/....Kidnapping Nimue was stupid, and now, the Red Knight is sure to attack us!” Starscream, not amused in the least, retorts, "I give the orders now, and this is my castle, as it shall soon be...my world!" And then he collapses in a fit of coughing. "Hurry it up, Ramjet!"

CatsCradle sits on the floor, leaning against the wall. She closes her optics wearily. "Water power, maybe? More reliable than air powered turbines, anyway. There's gotta be a river around here somewhere."

Ramjet failed deep space survival 101 and takes his time trying to remember how to build a generator from nothing by junk.

Starscream takes the gold that Sir Wulfe has brought him and begins spinning it into wire. He glances at the other Decepticons. "CatsCradle, set up two poles for recharging! Rumble, get me a wagon! I'm going to build us a generator that will give us the fuel we need!" Yes...he can put that scientific knowledge to some good use.

CatsCradle leaves, then comes back with two of the lances. "Long enough?"

Ramjet jams one in the ground, "They'll have to do."

Starscream begins coiling wire around the lances. "Rumble! Go gather up some of those miserable humans..."

Ramjet watches... but doesn’t learn anything.

In short order, the lances begin to crackle with energy. Rumble darts into the space between the poles, gasping as he finially y begins to power up. it feels /so good/.... But poor Rumble barely gets an appetizer before Starscream boots him out of the way. "Back off! There's barely enough for me to charge my basic life support functions!"

Ramjet mutters, "What about our basic functions?" he frowns and waits his turn tho.

Rumble mutters, "Spark-hog! Save some for the rest of us!" Meanwhile, Starscream is scowling equally at the humans turning the turbine. "FASTER, YOU MALINGERING PEASANTS!"

CatsCradle watches quietly, her expression very carefully blank again.

Starscream does, however, hear Rumble and seems for a moment to relent. "Okay, okay, I'm through." He steps out and lets the smaller robot in...still scowling, the twisted expression on his mouth hiding any other possible emotion.

Sir Wagond natters, "The Red Knight is sure to attack us to rescue his daughter...what were you thinking?" Starscream retorts, "I HOPE the Autobots are stupid enough to try...we're goin got have a surprise waiting for them. Rumble, get out of there! I need you to go get some ingredients!"

CatsCradle murmurs, "Two uncharged Autobots against four just-barely-charged Decepticons..." She shrugs. "Odds are on our side. But they'll try to sneak in, like they always do, rather than a direct attack. Probably go for the girl, since they'll consider that a priority.”

Ramjet says, "if we execute her maybe they'll go away?"

CatsCradle closes her optics again. Give-me-patience. "No, that will probably piss them off."

Starscream nods. "You're right, CatsCradle. But remember, I was a scientist long before I was an air warrior. We may not have lasers...but we have everything we need to make gunpowder. We're going to trap those Autobots, Ramjet. I /want/ them here...so we can terminate them and leave my world in my possession!"

Starscream says, "Ramjet! Build a fire! CatsCradle! Get some rock salt! Rumble, you will be going with Sir Wulfe to get sulfur!"

Ramjet looks around for something flammable and kicks down the stables, backhanding a cooking pot off the fire and dumping the splintered timbers on it.

Ramjet admires his handywork, a roaring blaze soon lighting the courtyard.

Rumble thinks back to what Soundwave has taught him and says, "Hey...what about potassium nitrate?" Starscream leers at Rumble and points up to the seagulls roosting on the top parapets of the castle. "After you find the sulfur, you can acquire that item as well."

Ramjet makes himself look busy, building the fire even higher.

Rumble looks up. A seagull plops a dropping right on his head. "Me and my big mouth," he moans. Thankfully, to some small justice, a seagull does the same to Starscream. The Air Commander wipes off the guano with a scowl and says, "If you need me I'll be in the recharger."

CatsCradle shrugs and heads for the kitchens, then to the storerooms and meat-curing rooms and comes back with all the salt she can find.

Starscream does, however, turn to Ramjet. "Nice fire. Charge up and be ready to stir when the others get back.”

Ramjet nods. Apparently burning stuff is a natural talent of his. He slumps down between the electrodes and recharges as best he can

Rumble returns with a pot... and three seagulls roosting on his shoulders. "Here Starscream, I got your stupid potassium nitrate!"

Starscream actually does some work...he sets up a large cauldron, grabs a lance and says, "All right everyone....dump your ingredients in!"

CatsCradle unexpectedly giggles. "Nice accessories, Rumble. Or are those new pets?"

Rumble scowls at Catscradle, "Wanna trade jobs?" In a horribly stinking cloud of smoke, Starscream helps Sir Wulfe heave the sulphur in. IT appears Starscream likes Sir Wagond's chief soldier better than he likes Sir Wagond himself.

Ramjet stamps out the embers and dumps in an armload of charcoal

Rumble looks after the fleeing seagulls. "Laserbeak...Buzzsaw...Soundwave..." The little Decepticon seems suddenly homesick.

CatsCradle manages to keep from laughing again. "Why no, Rumble, since you have done it so well already." She wrinkles her nose at the smoke and pours her salt in.

Ramjet frowns. "Smells awful. What are we gonna do? Stink them out?"

Starscream stirs the whole thing up with a lance. "Perfect." He scoops out a handful and chucks it at the steps...narrowly missing Sir Wagond. "Now put it into barrels and bags... we're going to be ready when the Autobots how up!"

Rumble laughs. "It's gunpowder!" he crows to Ramjet. "We're gonna blow those Autobots into little bits! They think we're as weak as they are...well...we'll show them!"

CatsCradle shrugs. "Unless they've been making the same thing."

Ramjet hehs at the resulting explosion, "Gunpowder. Yeah sure we will, Rumble."

Starscream shoots CatsCradle a dirty glance, hiding his own discomfort. He hadn't thought of that. "Autobots aren't that smart," he mutters, hoping it's true.

CatsCradle adds, "Or something worse...

Rumble climbs up on one of the upper parapets, keeping a look out for Autobots, as the others bag up the gunpowder.

Rumble cries out suddenly, "It's them! It's the Autobots and a whole bunch of humans!"

CatsCradle considers. "Their first priority will be rescuing the girl. Or sending someone in after her while we're distracted."

Rumble nods. "I'll stand guard on her...you smash the Autobots!"

Ramjet grabs a barrel of gunpowder under each arm and jumps up onto the battlements, ready to defend against the attacking army.

Starscream scowls at Rumble but doesn't question him, because he would rather be fighting himself! He jumps up to the top of the castle, standing defiantly on /his/ fortress, facing the oncoming morass of the Red Knight's army and the two Autobots. "Defenders, prepare for battle!" he yells to Sir Wagond's troops.

Warpath barrels towards the drawbridge!

Hoist smashes at the wall below where Ramjet is!

CatsCradle looks down at Rumble with a grin. "Or I could stand guard and you can crush? After all, you've got those nifty pile-drivers, and how much energy does it take for you to use them?"

Rumble says resignedly, "More energy than I've got right now."

Hoist says, "Don't worry, you got us!" Ramjet yells down, "So do I Autobot!...In my sights!" and tosses a barrel down at him.

Starscream shrills, “Catscradle, the drawbridge!”

CatsCradle's amusement dies away and she races for the drawbridge.

Starscream merrily chucks gunpowder at the human army, watching it explode causing horses to stampede in terror!

Rumble is expecting almost anything...but /not/ a double-cross from Sir Wagond, who was in the tower with Nimue, and who now slams open the door on the little robot, catching him in the back, and sliding his sword through a chink in Rumble's armour in a very clever and premeditated attack!

Ramjet likewise, hurls improvised explosives at the attackers...when he runs out of bombs he rips bits of the castle walls off and throws them down too

Hoist is in very rough shape, too tired to transform, almost too weak to stand...but he makes his body into a bridge over the moat. Human attackers swarm over Hoist and up, into the castle, where they battle with Sir Wagond's forces.

Warpath continues to thunder away at the drawbridge....and then...an odd human form appears on a mound. A man with a long white beard, dressed in robes and carrying a staff.

Ramjet seems inspired the brutality of medieval England and puts up quite a fight, kicking ladders off the walls as troops swarm up them, kicking crenalations down on them below...soon however he starts to run low on energy again.

CatsCradle begins to follow Ramjet's example and starts chucking almost anything chuckable off the walls at Warpath.

Ramjet wishes he could get one of those spikey balls on a chain big enough for him to use... but will just have to make do with what’s available.

Rumble looks over at CatsCradle and gestures to the man in green. "Who's /that/ weirdo?"

In most cases, being pelted by rocks would not hurt Warpath...but weak as he is, he withdraws...and transforms, too tired to hold his tank mode. The Autobots lie very still, on redline, two almost useless heaps of metallic scrap. Starscream's maniac laughter rises over the wind of a rising storm.

CatsCradle shakes her head. "I don't know. We haven't been introduced."

Ramjet finds that an conscious knight, swung by his legs makes a reasonable improvised weapon and as the fighting becomes hand to hand he batters the attacking knights with one of their fellows

Rumble says, "You know about this reinactment stuff!"

Ramjet says, "I wanna re-enact the bit where I kick Warpaths face in."

CatsCradle shrugs. "That's talking in general. That," she nods at the man, "is a specific." She grins briefly at Ramjet. "Go ahead. Who's stopping you?"

Starscream laughs, "You are defeated!" The man in green retorts, "Not if my magic can help it!" Starscream mocks, "Magic can never defeat science!"

Ramjet jumps down from the battlements, chasing off the largely stalled attacking humans.

CatsCradle stops for a second. "Yeah, but magic took us back in time, not science." She eyes the man in green warily. "I really don't like this..."

Ramjet doesn’t really have time for this parlay nonsense and would rather be finishing off the Autobots...but is very nearly exhausted himself

The mage...or wizard...or witch...gestures to one of the towers. Humans zip about, raising a large metal staff. The Red Knight urges the Autobots over to the siege tower with the metal pole, while the wizard begins a chant. "Gods of the storms, hear my call, give these metal warriors....life!"

CatsCradle gaze moves from the wizard to the Autobots to the tower with the metal pole. "Gods of storms? Oh, hell, he's going to electrocute them."

Lightning crackles...as Starscream watches, and both besiegers and besieged hold their breath in anticipation...a bolt hits the staff and sends energy into the Autobots bodies.

Rumble says, "You don't think he can really fix the Auto..." And then he sees Warpath and Hoist leaping up, looking /a lot/ more lively. "Slag me with a chain-gun," he mutters.

Starscream screams, "THIS CAN'T BE HAPPENING!" as the Autobots renew the assault...and that damned Sir Wagond and Nimue lower the Drawbridge to let the attackers in!

CatsCradle says consideringly, "I knew we should have just gone home..."

Ramjet watches despondently, "Oh No..."

Rumble watches the Autobots thunder across the drawbridge. He holds up his hands and grins sheepishly at Hoist. "I guess you don't know the way home, do you?"

CatsCradle murmurs, "Is it too much to hope that they still don't have weapons?" She draws her sword.

Starscream is maddened, throwing a veritable tantrum...and though the Autobots' lasers don't work any more than the Decepticons' do, Warpath himself pushes over a tower onto Starscream. The Decepticon leader struggles, kicking weakly...finally having to admit he's stuck.

Hoist looks at Warpath. "I guess we gotta take 'em back with us." Spike appears, nodding. "Who's to say what would happen if we left them," the human says. "The sixth century would never be the same."

Ramjet stands his ground against the onslaught but is run over for like the 4th time and smashed backwards thru the castle walls

CatsCradle sighs. "All I wanted in the first place was to go home. And I don't even want to think about how we'd mess up the time stream by staying."

Rumble glances at the squished Starscream...smashed Ramjet...Autobots talk ing of going home. "CatsCradle..." he says tentatively. "maybe we better go along with 'em... just so we can get home again!"

CatsCradle looks at the Autobots for a long moment. "/Can/ you get us back home?"

Hoist looks at the wizard. He says, "Certainly. I built the Dragon Mound as a time transport device."

CatsCradle glances at Starscream, who doesn't seem to be saying much of anything... when the crisis is over, she'll realize what a miracle that is... and sheaths her sword. "We just want to go home," she says.

Hoist, Spike and Warpath look mostly relieved. "Good. We just want to get out of ehre. If you'll cooperate that'll go much easier."

CatsCradle jerks her head in a nod. "Just until we're home."

Starscream curses as he digs himself out...and finds himself held at lance-point by Warpath. Grumbling, he raises his hands. "You'll regret this someday, Autobots." But for all his big talk, he's not making any moves

Medieval Fields

The Autobots and the wizard herd the Decepticons back towards the Dragon's Mound.

Ramjet is dragged along, tied up in Hoist’s cable

Rumble, overcome with curiosity despite himself, asks, "So why's it called the Dragon's Mound?" The wizard replies, "My time travel device...well, I've never used it ever since a wayward dragon made it his home."

CatsCradle stops for a moment and studies the wizard. "Who... Sir, if I might ask who you are?"

The wizard replies with a bow, "I am the Druid priest Bayart."

CatsCradle shakes her head silently. The name is not familiar to her.

Starscream scoffs. "Dragon? What kind of nonsense is..." And then a giant, green scaly head comes out of the Dragon’s Mound.

CatsCradle squeaks and backpedals a few feet.

Rumble yelps, "We never saw /him/ coming in!" Bayert says, "He must have been out hunting....but he's back now!" Noticing the Autobots' evident discomfort, he adds, "Don't worry. I have a full bag of dragonsbane with me."

CatsCradle says faintly, "Oh, where is Draconia when we need her?"

Ramjet says, "If I had enough energy left to ram it, wouldn’t need her"

Rumble nods to CatsCradle, looking very nervous. Starscream seems on the verge of running away. "Dragons' bane? He's CRAZY! We can't trust our lives to unscientific superstition!" And the dragon shoots out a bolt of fire at their group!

CatsCradle's give-me-patience expression returns briefly. "Unscientific superstition brought us here. I'll let it try to get me home again." She smiles sweetly at Starscream. "If you really like, though, sir, I'm sure you could stay."

Bayert protests, "There's no reason this shouldn't work! I used all the normal ingredients...charcoal, seagull droppings, sulfur, and rock salt." He tries to toss it at the dragon, but a burst of fire knocks him off his feet and sends the bag tumbling through the air to land near Ramjet.

Ramjet 's tow cable prison is neatly incinerated by the fireball, leaving him charred but unbound at last. "Stay? Bearings to that." He stumbles toward the mound.

The dragon's tail catches Ramjet in the midsection, knocking him into Starscream.

CatsCradle says faintly, "Gunpowder. Dragonsbane is gunpowder..."

Ramjet lands with the customary *clang* noise of Decepticon heads being knocked together.

CatsCradle looks to the wizard. "Why don't we just feed it? Give it a couple of horses or something?"

Bayert says weakly, "Dragons are notoriously ravenous...I fear that would break the kingdom's food supply to satisfy it completely"

Ramjet comes off somewhat the better from their tete a tete and shouts, "I'll feed it something, give me one of those bane bomb things."

Starscream mutters, "Get it off me..."

Starscream wiggles out from under Ramjet. The Autobots are busy distracting the dragon...it's shooting fire at them, ignoring the bag of dragon's bane.

CatsCradle lets out a sharp sigh, then notices the bag of dragonsbane/ gunpowder. She catches it up and throws it directly at the dragon. Throwing aim isn't too drastically different from shooting aim; it's a perfect throw.

The gunpowder/dragon's bane explodes in the beast's mouth, causing the giant creature to growl and take flight.

Warpath says, "Let's get--bang, boom!--outta here!"

Rumble says, "Nice aim, Cats!"

Ramjet looks disappointed..."or...you can do it yourself. ok."

CatsCradle smirks, then gives a very non-apologetic shrug to Ramjet. "Move it, Decepticons. Let's get out of here."

Bayert, Sir Wagond, the Red Knight and Nimue remain behind, waving, as the Autobots and Spike march the Decepticons into the mound.

CatsCradle glances at Spike. "Who was the Red Knight, anyway? I never caught a name there, either."

"Sir Atheling the Red," Spike responds. "One of the lesser lords of...um... Camelot," he says, rather nervously, to the Decepticon.

Ramjet scowls as he's poked at lancepoint into the mound

CatsCradle nearly stops walking. "Camelot?" she squeaks. "We went up against /Camelot/?"

Rumble says, "Cama-what?"

Ramjet shrugs at Rumble. "I never heard of it."

CatsCradle blinks. "Camelot is the most famous city in medieval legend. Hell, from just about any century's legend. I think we just came off real lucky."

Starscream grumbles, "Beaten...by two Autobots and stupid humans..." as Hoist and Warpath march them through.

Ramjet says, "I don't feel very lucky.""

****


Circle of Standing Stones
Present Day

        With the folding, turning and size shunting of parts, Divefire
transforms into his robot form.

Dragon’s Mound

Megatron slowly walks in from outside, distrustfully looking around.

Soundwave is standing at what looks to be a sort of table fitted into the
wall (the altar), and is trying to work out the inscriptions.

Megatron says, "What kind of place is this?"

Soundwave gestures to the inscribed runes worked into the stone. "Observe
for yourself, Commander. It appears to me that this structure was built in
order to make use of and channel the naturally occurring Chronal energies of
this region. However.." he touches the runes, some of which light up at the
contact, and others of which flicker back into darkness, "the machinery,
such as it is, has been damaged by our battle."

Divefire walks in a few moments after Megatron, shrugging off the battle
damage and glancing around the cave. is optics glimmer as he takes in the
sighs that up until now he had only read about. "Heh, so the legends were
true..."

Megatron slowly comes closer. "Can you repair it?

Soundwave looks at the stone "console" in some puzzlement. "Unknown. I can
detect no accessible machinery." He looks over at Divefire and asks, "You
are familiar with stories about such a place?"

Megatron kneels in front of the stone, touching the runes carefully.
In response to the touch, the letters glow brightly, but some of them
flicker back to darkness.

Soundwave looks expectantly to Divefire. "Is there information in your
databanks about how this equipment functions?"

Divefire looks up from studying a set of inscriptions on one side of the
cave. "I've read about places like this from human texts. Most of it's
mythical hear-say about dragons and magical potions. However judging from
the location and the rough translation of these runes, I'd surmise to get this
antiquated thing to work, first we'd have to align the stones again. I think
we managed to blow one up rather well during the fight."

Tempest's metal skin twitches and she says harshly, "That energy isn't
natural...what happened to them?"

Megatron says, "You mean the stone circle is a kind of energy collector for
the machinery?"

Soundwave says, "From the steady nature of the power fluctuations, at least
until we disturbed the site, I suspect it is a natural component of this
region. But this - device - has apparently been built to channel that
energy." He looks to Megatron. "That could explain why I have lost contact
with my creations. If they were moved in time and space, they may be too far
away to reach. If we can open the portal again, we may be able to retrieve
them."

Divefire gives it a thought for a moment and glances again at the runes.
"I'd say channel and focus, Soundwave. I can't discern if time travel was it's
original intent, but it certainly seems likely..." Then he adds after a pause.
"Or at least I hope so."

Soundwave says, "And you feel that setting the exterior stones back as they
were, would reactivate this machinery?"

Megatron says, "We will only find out if we try it out."

Divefire nods slightly. "Yes, I think so. Although this is chronol technology we're talking about here, so anything could happen..."

Megatron heads for the exit.

Circle of Standing Stones

Megatron doesn't waste any time. He starts putting the stones back into
place.

Soundwave steps over to the monolith that fell in the battle and shattered
into three parts. "I will summon the Constructicons to assist," he suggests,
looking to Megatron for confirmation.

Megatron says, "Do what is necessary, but do it quick!"

Tempest does her best to help Megatron out

Divefire glances over at the shattered bolder. "Or we could raid a glue
factory..."

Soundwave sends a radio signal, and then starts work as well, starting to
put up some of the larger stones that are able to balance on their own
without cement. A short time later, Mixmaster and Hook fly in from the
mainland, having fortunately been nearby.

Divefire also gets to work on setting up some more of the stones and
generally cleaning up the ground to its former smooth state.

Megatron sets his jaw-plate as he works eagerly to repair the ancient
"machine".

Mixmaster makes use of his chemical factory on wheels to glue the broken
boulder pieces back together again, assisted by Hook to get the positioning
just right. Soundwave starts to pick up the larger chips that have been shot
off the monoliths and lets Mixmaster glue them in place.

Hook questions as he works, "Repairing the battle damage we leave behind us
these days? How is that the task of a noble Decepticon warrior?"

Megatron's optics glow brightly as he glares at Hook. "This is for the sake
of our missing warriors! Now stop talking nonsense and work!"

Divefire’s expression reads much the same as Megatron's words, though he's loath to give voice to those fears that are norring away inside of him.

Hook's optic band flickers a little in a "blink" as he's snapped at, but he
goes back to working without another word. Mixmaster doesn't even question
it, apparently having fun making use of his glue capabilities.

Megatron says, "And work fast!"

Soundwave fits some of the last pieces into place, summoning Mixmaster to
glue them. He works with the usual calm precision as always, though there's
a sense about him as though he's listening for something far away.
Soundwave seems satisfied finally that all the stones are in place as he
remembers them.

Megatron says, "Now let's see if the machinery works again."

Soundwave steps forward into the center of the ring, looking over the
structure. "Each boulder is precisely placed. Most unusual, for such a
primitive-appearing construct."

Divefire runs a finger down one of the rocks and nods in agreement. "Given
the age, the construction of this site is amazing."

Soundwave says, "What is its age?"

Divefire replies in a nanchalant tone. "No one's quite sure, the best guesses
place them at any where between three or four thousand years old."

Soundwave says, "That is considered ancient technology for this planet?"

Tempest nods to Soundwave. "Sure. There's planets with life younger 'n'
that."

Divefire nods again. "They didn't invent the wheel until 2000 or so years
ago."

Soundwave says, "Most unusual. But at the moment we cannot puzzle over it."

Soundwave moves to follow Megatron into the mound.

Dragon's Mound

Megatron kneels in front of the stone, touching the runes once again.

With the exterior stones back in place, the runes glow brightly in response
to Megatron's touch, and this time stay lit. In fact, the light fills the
whole little cavern.

Megatron says, "Any response from your creations, Soundwave?"

Soundwave's optic band flashes on brightly as the light inside the cave
fades down again - because yes, he's detected the signal he's been listening
for all this time.

From outside, another sound becomes apparent - the ever-popular sound of
vehicle engines and squealing tires that always signifies trouble.

Tempest perks up. "Autobots outside!" she hisses.

Divefire lets the light of the runes die down before he dares glance around the chamber, a look of hope on his features.

From out of the blazing flash of light come the five missing Decepticons, Warpath, Hoist, and Spike.

Megatron jerks around. "What? Damn!! Defense positions!" He runs for the exit.

Soundwave for a moment doesn't respond to the noise outside. "Rumble, Ravage - " the optic band flickers back to its normal shade, the time for greetings cut short again by the arrival of the enemy.

Ramjet looks all charred and dented. He's shoved forward by something and falls on his face

Soundwave has left.

Rumble grins and runs to Soundwave's side!

Rumble has left.

CatsCradle steps over Ramjet, looking around frantically. She sees Diver and closes her optics thankfully for a brief second.

Divefire steps forward for Cats without a thought of the Autobots attacking them on the outside.

CatsCradle falls into Diver's arms. "It wasn't my fault," she says weakly.

<Earth> Soundwave says, "Recommend returning our recovered warriors to base for refueling as soon as possible."

Divefire smirks slightly, just holding her for a second. "We'll talk about that later."

Tempest scrunches her nose. "There's a battle going on you know," she says to the cuddly couple, and goes chasing after Hoist.

Circle of Standing Stones

Soundwave sets up a barrage of plasma fire to shield Megatron while he disentangles himself from the overenthusiastic Starscream.

<Earth> Megatron says, "Assist who needs assistance and return to base."

Gryphus woohoos.. She got a few! She circles around for another run at them.

Gryphus' attacks have driven the Autobots back a little, and they seem less fiercely determined to strike now that they've spotted their own missing group members.

CatsCradle stumbles slightly. "Yes, refueling would be very good," she murmurs. She smiles. "And it really wasn't my fault."

Soundwave looks for the rest of those who have just returned - CatsCradle and Ramjet - as though to evaluate their conditions. "Divefire, assist CatsCradle," he directs.

Megatron grumbles: "I hope you calmed your enthusiasm now, Starscream. Return to base!"

Megatron takes off.

Divefire steps out of the mound, arms raised as he quickly lays down a barrage of fire from his arm rifles. "Done." He replies to Soundwave.

Soundwave slips off toward the ancient structure again, still missing someone in the count.

CatsCradle chuckles. "Like you need an excuse, right?"

Gryphus comes in for another strafing run on the Bots.

Soundwave satisfies himself that Ramjet has followed the rest, and prepares to take off and head back to base.

Starscream shoots Megatron a dirty look, a "why-do-I-care" look, and goes.

Gryphus woos! she hit then again.. that's two for.. three.. not shabby.. that practice is paying off.

Ramjet is presumably dragged off by someone. despite no-one being terribly pleased to see him

Divefire slips an arm around Cats and quickly powers up his jets. "Quite."

CatsCradle laughs again, slipping her arms around his neck, and resting her head on his shoulder tiredly

Divefire does a fast take off into the air, leaving the Autobots in his dust trail.

Gryphus' attacks from the air are giving the Decepticons a quick way out. Soundwave takes advantage of it, and rises up, keeping watch on the newly returned travelers to see if any of them need assistance. Pausing a moment in mid-hover, he fires off a shot at one of the standing stones, calculated to hit at a precise point. Once again the monolith tilts and falls, landing with a heavy crash on the ground and breaking into two pieces.

Soundwave then turns in the air to accompany the others.

Gryphus calls down. "Who wants to ride Griffin Airlines?"

Island Cluster
Cool-Temperate Zone <Europe>
Atlantic Ocean <Eastern Hemisphere>
Atlantic Ocean <Central>
Conning Tower
Engine Room

Tempest gazes speculatively at CatsCradle, Starscream and Ramjet, as if to ask "what the slag happened to you."

CatsCradle catches Tempest's gaze, starts to answer, then sighs and shakes her head. "You're never gonna believe this one."

Megatron unconsciously rubs his shoulder.

Soundwave says, "You may be surprised, CatsCradle."

CatsCradle says weakly, "Time travel?"

Megatron says, "It seems all came back in one piece."

Gryphus follows in, last of course.. "That was amusing."

Tempest snorts. "A big whap on the head seems more likely to me."

Divefire glances a look to Cats from looking over his dented armour. "That would make sense since we've been playing with a crono portal for the last few hours."

Soundwave says, "It is not an unheard-of phenomenon. But, all of you require fuel, you can tell us of your experiences then."

Starscream shoots Megatron another dirty look. "And I'm beginning to debate whether I should have bothered coming back at all," he says in a mutter which he intends everyone to hear.

CatsCradle smiles sweetly to Starscream. "I do remember offering to let you stay."

Tempest just kind of stares at Soundwave...as if not wanting to believe that.

Striker walks in and appears to be shocked at what Starscream had just said.

Gryphus shudders at the thought.

Starscream scowls at Cats and says nothing. He crosses his arms, looking around for energon

Ramjet arrives from Conning Tower.

Megatron says, "Striker, get us some energon. Our troops has to refuel."

CatsCradle leans against Divefire and pokes at one of the dents in his armor. "You all right?"

Gryphus flexes her wings.. "Ow.." she frowns. "Well I'm getting fixed first..."

Ramjet slumps down against a bulkhead. out of the way at the back.

Striker's optics narrow and he heads to go get the energon.

Divefire nods to Cats. "I'll be fine."

Soundwave says, "Who else requires repairs?"

Gryphus enters Training Complex

Divefire glance a look to Soundwave. "Maybe a new front fender..."

CatsCradle sits down quite suddenly. "Just fuel. That's all." She looks up. "Ramjet's hurt. And Starscream had a tower fall on him."

Striker walks in and drops the energon cubes he has in his arms.

Starscream growls, "I'm /fine./”  With a dirty look at Cats.

Soundwave nods. "Refuel, then, and I will await you in repair bay."

Starscream does not need to be told twice to refuel.

Soundwave may be curious to hear all about the adventure, but he's got work to do now.

Soundwave enters Training Complex

CatsCradle shrugs. "Fine. Starscream had a tower fall on him, had Ramjet fall on him, but he doesn't need repairs."

Megatron glances at Ramjet, then at Starscream. "If you feel well, you can continue with your daily duties. Meanwhile Soundwave may look after Ramjet."

Divefire walks over to the cube pile and picks up a cube for himself and Cats. He hands one to Cats then leans against a wall himself, taking a moment to drink.

Starscream grumbles at Megatron, "Sure, I get thrown a thousand years back in time and you want to put me back to work again? Right away?" He storms out towards the repair bay.

CatsCradle calls after him, "Shoulda said you needed repairs then."

Megatron shakes his head.

Striker tilts his head, "Back in time?" he says with a confused look. "How'd you all manage that one?"

Ramjet gets up sulkily, takes one of the cubes, draining it quickly and stomping off to the repair bay.

CatsCradle takes the cube from Diver and quickly drinks it. "I do think he managed to avoid the dragon spitting fire at him, though," she adds.

Divefire smirks slightly between drinking. It's always good to see Starscream's interpersonal skills working to their fullest.

CatsCradle finishes the cube and rests her head back against the wall, her optics closed. "Did you know, Diver, that dragonsbane is made out of gunpowder?"

Ramjet enters Training Complex

Divefire glances down at Cats. "No, I didn't. I also didn't know they had dragons to use it on."

Megatron says, "Striker, I think Ramjet could use a guide."

CatsCradle leans against Diver's leg. "And making gunpowder is about the smelliest job I've ever done."

Striker nods, he's already been a maid and a prisoner, why not a tourguide? "Yes Megatron."

Striker enters Training Complex

Tempest looks at Catscradle. "You're serious, aren't you...you really went back in time."

Divefire refrains from saying Cats smells like it too, just nods instead. "I'll bet it was."

CatsCradle says, "oh, yeah." She rubs at her forehead, tiredly. "Back to 500 AD. Camelot. Wizards. Dragons. Castles and jousts. Starscream wanting to take over... oh, wait, that wasn't part of the history, that was what he was adding to history."

Megatron heads for the door. "I'll take a look after the injured." He decides not to mention anyone specific.

Tempest says quietly, 'Do you think history can be changed, then?"

Divefire looks to Tempest with a deadly expression. "Tempest, to even get into that would take the next three days."

CatsCradle is quiet for a long moment. "I'm glad I didn't have to find out," she finally says. She looks up at Diver. "I really didn't want to wait another fifteen hundred years before I saw you again."

Divefire glances down to Cats again, his hand falling on her shoulder and softly squeezing it. "I was trying not to think about that..."

Tempest shoots Divefire a bit of a /look/, mutters in her usual sour way, "Then I'll leave you two lovebirds to coo," as if that were some kind of crime, and leaves.

CatsCradle barely notices Tempest leaving. "Love, for you, it just would have been a day or two."

Divefire looks to Cats a little confused. "How do you mean?"

"I would have had to live the fifteen hundred. And I couldn't come back here sooner, because it would mean that I would be twice in the same time. Which can't happen. So the soonest I could have come back would be after I left. So it would have only been a matter of hours for you, but fifteen hundred years for me." She opens her optics, staring blankly ahead of her.

Divefire blinks down at Cats, then shakes his head. "I hate temporal physics.."

"I had a whole night and two days to think about it." She shudders and points at the pile of cubes. "I think I need more of that."  She waves her hand at the cubes in an I'm-too-tired-to-get-up manner

Divefire smirks again and leans off the wall, grabs a few cubes and hands them to Cats. "Here you are."

CatsCradle drinks another with a long sigh. "What happened here?"

Divefire shrugs lightly. "We fought off the Autobots, fought the native humans military forces, rebuilt the stone circle so it would recall you all, and questioned how humans could build crono devices some 4000 years ago."

CatsCradle says in a wise tone, "Magic. I was there. Trust me on this one." She sips at a third cube. "Did I hear you say you needed a new fender?"

Divefire shrugs a little. "I took a few shots. But then I did go and ram Prime..."

CatsCradle shrills, "You did WHAT? What were you trying to do? Make it so I came back to a dead body?"

Divefire sighs slightly. "I was a little distraught at you having disappeared."

CatsCradle puts aside the half-empty cube. "Getting yourself killed wasn't going to help bring me back." She buries her face in her hands. "Oh, Diver... when I couldn't get you on the radio, when I realized what happened... and then Starscream wouldn't let us come back right away. I had to wait until he was knocked out and let the Autobots capture us to get us back home."

Divefire shakes his head slightly. "I really am going to have to hurt that fool."

CatsCradle raps on his leg with her knuckles. "Just don't you ever go after Prime again. Least, not when I'm not there to back you up." She shudders. "Diver, I couldn't have stood it... if I came back through all that and found out you had been killed."

Divefire sighs slightly. "It's not like I didn't have Megatron and Soundwave backing me up hun."

CatsCradle buries her face in her hands. "I know," she says in a muffled voice. "I'm sorry, love."

<Earth> Calcar says, "Calcar approaching Earth Base with report from Shockwave, requesting landing clearance."

<Earth> Megatron says, "Allowance to land granted."

Divefire rests a hand on her shoulder. "It's all right hun, I do understand."

Calcar enters, bearing several reports. He notices Divefire and CatsCradle and bows down low. "Milord, milady. How went the battle today?"

Calcar heads off to make his report.

CatsCradle presses her face against his leg. "I can't lose you."

Divefire sighs again. "I know hun, I can't lose you either..."

CatsCradle wraps an arm around his ankle and rests her head against his leg again. "Do you feel up to flying me back to the lake?"

Divefire thinks for a moment then nods. "I think I can manage that."

CatsCradle sighs. "Good. I want a bath in the lake. Badly. And I'm sure you'd prefer that too, before we sleep." She grins up at him. "Wanna scrub my back for me?"

Divefire looks down at her with a smirk, his optics glowing slightly. "I'd love to. As long as I don't fall asleep in the water..."

CatsCradle nods. "Believe me, I'll have some of that same problem myself. Let me just check and see if I can report tomorrow."

CatsCradle transmits to Megatron: " sir, do you really need my report tonight, or can I give it tomorrow?"

Divefire looks to her and awaits her radio response.

CatsCradle playfully chews on his knee while she waits.

Megatron transmits to CatsCradle: "Send it tomorrow. Take a rest... well if Divefire lets you."

CatsCradle transmits to Megatron: " (with a tired laugh) or if I let him"

CatsCradle bursts out in a short tired laugh at the radio response. "We're fine. Let's get out of here." She gives his knee another bite, then hauls herself up, taking another two more cubes and tucking them in a storage compartment as she does.

Divefire glances to Cats then nods slightly. "Fine with me."

CatsCradle chuckles again, leaning against him. "He told me to take a rest, if you'll let me."

Divefire smirks slightly then shakes his head. "Megatron must like us."

CatsCradle nods. "He does. We're the only ones here who haven't given him any trouble yet."

Divefire smirks again and pats her aft slightly. "That's because we're too busy giving each other trouble."

CatsCradle protests again, "It was not my fault."

Divefire grins and nips her neck slightly. "I know."

Striker arrives from Training Complex.

CatsCradle grumbles, "Damned trouble magnet."

Striker nods a greeting as he rushes out of the base, isn't he supposed to be under house arrest though?

CatsCradle watches after him. "Oh, I sooo hope he's been lifted from house arrest..."

Divefire raises his hands slightly. "I so don't want to know."

CatsCradle thinks a minute. "Calcar's here. He outranks us anyway. He can decide what to do." She pushes him towards the tower. "Oh, quick, before we're told to stay."

Divefire smirks and moves.

Conning Tower
Atlantic Ocean <Central>
Atlantic Ocean <Western Hemisphere>
North Atlantic Coast <North America>
Boreal Forest <North America>
Valley

CatsCradle makes her way down the mountain. By the time she reaches the beach, she's pulling off her armor and leaving pieces of it behind her. She walks into the lake and sits down in the water, scootching further into it until the water reaches her shoulders

Divefire watches her for a moment, admiring that wonderful body of hers and sighs slightly, then does exactly the same and joins her in the lake,

CatsCradle pulls her knees up to her chest and rests her chin on them. She closes her optics, just content to feel the water lapping against her.

Divefire sits next to her in the water, but with his legs out and leaning back slightly on his arms, letting the water run over some of his damaged areas.

CatsCradle giggles suddenly. "You shoulda seen Starscream's face when the dragon ran out and spat fire at him. I thought he was going to jump out of his armor."

Divefire shakes his head slightly and lets out a chuckle. "I'm not surprised. It's not something on the Seeker training course, how to deal with fire breathing dragons."

CatsCradle grins. "I threw a bag of gunpowder in it's mouth."

Divefire winces. "I hope you ducked afterwards."

CatsCradle rolls her optics. "Please, love, I'm not stupid." She grins again. “‘Sides, it worked."

Divefire smirks once more as he runs water down her back from his hands. "I'm sure it did."

CatsCradle lets out a long sigh of contentment, leaning forward more so he can reach more of her back. She suddenly giggles again. "Do you realize, I haven't slept in over fifteen hundred years?"

Divefire sighs and pours the water over her head. "Don't start temporal mechanics on me dear."

CatsCradle sputters and wipes the water out of her optics. "Don't worry. I'm too tired to really talk seriously about it. It's still so surreal, that these little thoughts keep running around."

Divefire kisses the side of her cheek softly. "Well I'm just glad you're back."

CatsCradle giggles again. "Really, it was three thousand years. Fifteen hundred back, and fifteen hundred forward again..."

Divefire growls and dunks her under the water again.

CatsCradle splutters and flails wildly, splashing at him

Divefire smirks and ducks under the water to sneak a kiss on her lips.

CatsCradle's optics flash at him under the water and she kisses him back before sitting back up again, wiping the water from her face and laughing.

Divefire grins to her. "I did warn you."

CatsCradle flicks her fingertips at his face, sending droplets flying at him. She turns around to sit facing him and begins to scoop water over him, her hands gentle over his wounds. "Should I be doing something for these?"

Divefire shakes his head slightly. "They'll heel on their own, just, don't bite them."

CatsCradle murmurs rather absently, "I think I could find other places to bite, if that's what you wanted." Her hands fold over his shoulders, massaging.

Divefire sighs softly as her hands work his body. "Mmmm, I'd love you to, Cats, but I'd fall asleep halfway through."

CatsCradle shakes her head. "I'd beat you to it. We barely had enough energy to keep life support systems going. And I couldn't sleep. I kept having those time paradox thoughts running through my head. Like..." She shakes her head again. "Like what would I do if I was stuck there. Providing we could find energy. I knew you were somewhere buried on Earth, but I didn't know where. And even if I could find you, you wouldn't even know who I was, because we hadn't met yet."

Divefire touches a finger to her lip softly. "Shhh. It's okay, Cats, you’re back now, that's what matters."

CatsCradle shakes her head again and touches his face. "How did you figure out what happened? I just had these images of you tearing that cave apart and not finding me..."

Divefire smirks to her slightly. "Well between Soundwave, myself and Megatron, we worked out the cave and the site was a crono machine of some kind.  I was able to translate some of the runic text to get a basic idea of how it worked and after some repairs, we got you back."

"And with some magic thrown in."

Divefire nods lightly. "Yes, it's all a bit disconcerting really."

CatsCradle tilts her head at him. "The magic versus science bit?"

Divefire nods again lightly. "Yes."

CatsCradle laughs softly. "What magic I saw was science based. Dragonsbane being gunpowder. The wizard re-energizing the Autobots with a lightning rod. But still... there had to be something else to that time travel. That's something that we can't even do with our science yet. Besides..." she wiggles her feet in the water. "I saw a dragon, and they aren't supposed to exist either."

Divefire mutters slightly. "Where do they hide dragon bones..."

CatsCradle shrugs. "Maybe they disintegrate. Maybe magic? Maybe that's what dinosaur bones are. Who knows."

Divefire nods slightly, then shakes his head, dismissing it for now. "Too much to think about right now."

"And I have to admit, the idea of refueling by lightning bolt was pretty damned intimidating." She pauses for a moment, then adds softly, "I would have done it to get back to you, though. Anything." She leans back into the water slightly. "Even get captured by Autobots."

Divefire leans against her softly, sighing as he rests his body against hers. "I love you, Cats. So very, very much."

CatsCradle leans against him, her arm slipping around his waist. "I knew, you see," she says softly, "that I just had to get back to this time. Once here, I knew you'd tear the world apart to get me, even in a cell in the Ark." She smiles suddenly. "'Course, you'd probably meet me halfway, tearing the world apart to get to you." She presses tighter against him. "I love you," she whispers. "Oh, Diver, I love you."

Divefire holds her tightly and doesn't show any signs of letting go. Words have been said, and their actions speak louder then any words could as they hold each other with the waves lapping at their bodies.



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