Chapter 14 - At the Cost of War

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A new chapter is a new day. Things can be unpredictable, but they need to be faced. There's always a time where you either choose to turn the page, or close the book.

~~

After hours, Gears felt as though she was infected with Red Alert's paranoia. The question was still lodged in the back of her mind:

Was there something beneath the ship? Something lurking in the shadows?

Perhaps there wasn't, which would be a relief. Yet on the hand other hand, there was a possibility. A large possibility. She knew that Drift bought the ship from some shady people. Scratch that. A very sketchy band of people.

She felt it to be funny how one measly, insignificant thought could send a person's mind wandering down into depths not touched in ages, or perhaps even covered in layers of dust.

Goldgears decided to stay with First Aid and Rung back on the Lost Light while the rest of the crew continued toward their mission on the planet surface below.

She momentarily looked in Rung's direction as he spoke to First Aid every so often. A Cybertronian, once shot to the head, was now alright. Was now breathing and talking. All the Cybertronians she knew who were shot in the head ended up dying. And stayed dead. Rung must have been under heaven's light.

She found herself wanting to check on Red Alert, but doubted he'd even move. She had a gut feeling he wasn't going to get up, let alone speak or flinch.

"So you must be the new addition," Rung said as he walked over to her. he grinned and held out his hand, to which Gears shook it as soon as she could. "Goldgears, correct? Whirl's new friend?"

"I wouldn't go that far," the golden femme said. "But everyone I know aboard the ship calls me Gears."

"Gears then," Rung said, letting go of a laugh. "Hope I won't be seeing you in my office anytime soon." The mech was quite the tease. He had to keep a positive attitude, after all.

"It's okay," First Aid intervened. "She's as level-headed as me, Rung. You've got nothing to worry about! . . . And she was there when Rodimus got Red Alert out of the reservoir. She's a good comrade."

Gears grinned and nodded at the young medic, who in return nodded back. She'd never been given a compliment before. All the 'compliments' from before were just people saying something about her armor. Then there were the nicknames.

Rung smiled, answering with, "Thank you for telling me, First Aid." Then his attention shifted back to Gears. Thankfully he wasn't taller than her. If anything, the exact same height.

"Rung," Gears said. She'd never said his name before; the feel was quite new. "It's good to see you're well. I never expected - "

"For me to live?" Rung asked. "Trust me, me neither. But thankfully we're on a ship to where the crew cares."

"Do they really, though?" Gears asked, but received no reply in return. Rung had waved to First Aid and departed from the medbay, most likely heading to his office to enjoy the feel of his chair. First Aid continued to sort through his datapads one by one, organizing files. Gears and him shared moments of silence, and Gears prepared to wander out of the room.

"You lived in Crystal City. Was it nice there?" First Aid suddenly asked as Gears had her back turned.

"Very lovely," Gears said as she turned around, smiling. Truth be told, she didn't want to leave. First Aid was peaceful; he was easy to relax around. Someone that could've just spoke to you, and you'd wish to stick around. "How'd you know?"

"I have your specs," First Aid said. "'Goldgears of Crystal City'. You studied engineering for seventeen solar cycles, you were forged, you are Vitreous-Negative, and you have a sensitive - but mild - allergic reaction to engex."

"And you just . . . know everything, about everyone on the ship?" Gears asked.

"It's my job," First Aid replied. "I'm not the only one, Ratchet and Ambulon - "

Ratchet suddenly rushed into the medbay, a limp, almost lifeless body on a girder being wheeled in front of him. The medic immediately attached wires from a jump-starter to the body, and soon Ambulon was behind him, doing the same thing to someone else.

" . . . I think they're back," Gears said dryly.

"First Aid!" Ratchet whipped around and looked at the younger medic, ordering, "I need you at the shuttle bay. I'm sure more like this will be arriving soon."

Gears was about to ask what happened, but no words came from her mouth. First Aid raced out of the room and to the shuttle bay, running as fast as he could down the hallway.

"Halt!" Gears ordered as she followed, barely running next to him. "I'm coming with."

In the shuttle bay, Chromedome emerged from the ship, carrying his partner in his arms; Rewind. The archivist was dripping energon and barely moving, and the light from his blue optics was fading away quickly. Gears looked disgusted at the open wounds all about his body, but tried to hide her expression from Chromedome. It was, after all, his Conjunx Endura. And if he'd seen the expression, Chromedome would most likely try to tear her apart.

First Aid and Chromedome just rush past her. They certainly didn't need her pestering them questions. When she looked up, a small, blue and white mech was coming from the ship, but no one else followed. She felt a small part of her drop dead.

Gears ran up to him and asked harshly, "Is Whirl alright?"

When the mech didn't answer, she noticed a large, purple mass behind him, and the mech held onto its hand.

It was Cyclonus, with a huge hole in his chest.


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