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TFP: Shrouded... (Chapter IIX: Thinkie Pinkie...)Lauren sat on the water tank, staring up at the night sky, and asking herself over and over again; What can I do? I hate this! I need Optimus and I to be normal again-what can I do to make everything better? How can I change myself, why has this happened?!... I hate you... I hate you so-so much. You can't do a thing right, you know that? The cold wind whipped at her face, and sent a chill across her body. Belt of the Milkyway shown so bright, like it was comforting her, giving her hope. Before-Optimus would come out to stargaze with her, and together they would point out the planets they knew, even though they couldn't see Cybertron... With the thought of Cybertron, Lauren began to think of how weird it was-she knew Earth was her home, but it felt like Cybertron was home too. She hugged her knees, placing her chin atop them, and shuddered, "What am I going to do?"
Lauren yelped, falling back, after Blaster had startled her.
"Hey, Princess, why yah out here al
TFP: Shrouded... (Chapter VII: Transformer...)
"When I said I would do anything-this is not what I had in mind, Lauren..." Rachet was still astonished at the fact that Lauren had been hiding Starscream's biomechanism this entire time, "Optimus would not approve."
"You said you'd do anything." Lauren went on, "And besides-you owe Starscream your spark... the least you can do is instal his T-Cog, and give him his freedom back."
Rachet took the T-Cog from Lauren, and looked it over, perfectly intact, "We don't even know if Starscream is still-"
"He's there," Lauren interrupted, "Now are you gonna help me do this under the radar, or not?"
"First, I'd like to know why you are so compelled to do this, Lauren?" Rachet asked.
Lauren nodded, "Because I made him a promise, and I don't just break those."
Rachet could respect that... his greatest of concerns was Lauren being deceived by the former decepticon... "V-Very well..."
They waited until midnight came, Rachet looked into the groundbridge room, to make sure no one was there
TFP: Shrouded... (Chapter VI: A Spark to Heart...)
Optimus rushed off of the Jackhammer, and straight to Rachet's lab, who was ready, and waiting with June Darby. He laid her on the gurney, and waited.
June checked her vitals, while Rachet scanned.
"You said she was bit a little over two hours ago?" June asked.
Optimus nodded, "She stated that she was fine, and hour later she began showing different signs of the venom effecting her."
"Optimus, I think we've all learned by now that when Lauren says 'I'm fine', she means she's just covering up something serious." June sighed, "The only thing I know to do is give her anti-venom. It's a good thing I did not listen to the good doctor, when he said we wouldn't need it." She quickly measured the dosages
"How was I supposed to know Lauren was going to got have a lethal snake bite her?" countered Rachet.
"The good thing about neurotoxic venom is that unlike cytotoxic venom, there are no residual effects," June informed, "She'll be fine by tomorrow."
Optimus sighed, relieved, "
TFP: Shrouded... (Chapter V: A Kiss from Death...)
"Princess, I question the wisdom of your current action!" called Perceptor.
Lauren looked down, and seeing Perceptor looking a bit small so far down made her begin to tremble, "If I can get above these stupid trees, we can see if the Jackhammer is looking for us!"
Mirage added in, "Cliffjumper nearly made it to the top, come back down, and we'll find a stronger-uh-'tree' was it?"
She chuckled, shouted down, "I don't think you quite understand, the only way I'm getting down from here is if I fall!
"If you're scared of heights, why did you go up there in the first place?!"
"Good question! I'm almost to the top, hold on!" Lauren clawed her way up the entanglement of vines, then jumped to a higher, thinner tree, and shoved herself up, enough to see above the treeline, "Okay, I'm up here!"
"What do you see?!"
Lauren squinted her optics, and began scanning, "I think I see Wheeljack's ship... but its really far away, might not even be him!" Lauren reached into her pocket, and pulle
TFP: Shrouded... (Chapter IV: AfterShocks...)
Lauren remained speechless, terrified once again.
"Speak, fleshling!" ordered Shockwave.
"I-I knew how to end the stasis lock because I am familiar with cybertronian technology, and I can read the language! I know cybertron's location, and about the civil war that destroyed the planet. You're Shockwave, a decepticon scientist," Lauren had blurted everything out.
Shockwave took a couple of steps closer, "You are not completely organic." He scanned her, "Those are cybertronian implants... autobot allegiance. How many autobots are on this planet?"
Lauren buttoned her lips together.
"Very well... are there decepticons on this planet?"
Lauren nodded, What the scrap is wrong with you, Lauren?! Stop it!
"Good, you have ceased to be of use then."
Lauren shouted, clenching her optics shut, as she heard the weapon's fire, but instead felt someone grab her, and air rush by. When Lauren looked up, she blinked.
"That was rude, Shockwave! Give the girl a break!" laughed Blaster. "After you, f
TFP: Shrouded... (Chapter III: Accidents...)
"YEEK!" Lauren ducked, holding onto the package for Rachet, when she heard the clang of the lob slamming into Wheeljack's hands, Lauren looked up, and eyed them, "Guys, can't y'all do that outside?"
"We could, but Wheeljack kept loosing the lob!" Bulkhead chuckled.
Wheeljack chipped in, "Come on, Plummet, we aren't hurting anyone."
"Yet," Lauren sighed, walking to Rachet at the end of the bridge, and pulled out a knife to open the package, "The final circuit came it, you ready to get this thing running?"
"I am, it will be a relief to have the groundbridge running again," Rachet confirmed, "I hate to admit it, but this would have taken much longer without your calculations."
Lauren gently pulled out a circuit the size of a platter, "Thanks to Optimus's memories I was able to understand what you were asking me to do."
The autobot medic eyed her, "Speaking of Optimus, what has been with you two the past couple of days?" Rachet asked.
Lauren shrugged, "We-aren't exactly seeing e
TFP: Shrouded... (Chapter II: Calls...)
The warehouse itself stopped cold, hearing the energon-sapping shriek ring through the hanger. Optimus's attention shot to Rachet, who blinked, equally as confused.
Wheeljack was the first to pop the question, "What the scrap was that?"
Seconds later, Jack kicked the door on the east side of the hanger open, carrying Lauren, "Rachet, she's hurt!"
Lauren remained limp, and her left arm hanging was dripping blood...
Rachet rushed over, and accepted the girl, "What happened?!"
"It was an accident! She didn't mean to!"
Raf appeared, "Miko accidentally stabbed Lauren's right eye with those decepticon arm-things!"
"By Primus," spat Rachet, turning away, and rushing onto the Jackhammer.
"Where is Miko?" asked Bulkhead.
That is when a traumatized-looking Miko came out, with the left gauntlet's blade tipped with blood and energon.
Optimus put it all together...
Miko walked up to Optimus, and removed the weapons, "I-I took these without permission."
Optimus accepted the devices.
Miko went on, "I
TFP: Shrouded... (Chapter I: Accusations...)
Lauren's stomach was still doing cartwheels, but it felt like it was also in a knot. She cradled her stomach, and groaned.
"That's what you get for ingesting synthetic, experimental alloys and metals, Lauren," Rachet sighed.
"Miko said they were Hersheys..."
"Lauren... that was synthetic cybertonium, steel, and a carbon alloy that I hadn't classified... what did it taste like?" he asked.
"Steel, lemony minerals, and a dissolvable-bitter mix between bad hard candy, and a lovely fizzy lozenge," Lauren muttered, she the grunted, and lurched, bringing her right hand over her mouth.
"In the bucket, please," sighed Rachet, scooting the pale closer to her.
Lauren grabbed it in time to throw up more in it.
Rachet blinked, "I don't know what possessed you into swallowing them, but at least I was able to induce vomiting before any real damage could be done."
Lauren sighed, moaning again.
Optimus turned to Bulkhead and Miko, "Were you aware those alloys could kill a h
a dangerous hallucinationThe light coming through the window was bright,
much too bright.
Even though my eyes were closed
I could see it-
The skin of my arms prickled,
sweat dripped from my brow.
It was two in the afternoon but…
the sun was setting
through the window facing east.
I should have seen the hutch,
shelves lined with bone china
decorated with delicate leaves and vines.
I was so thirsty
and reaching for cups that should have been there.
Instead I found a billboard of butterflies,
the colors raging
more than any rainbow
I'd ever seen.
Their wings fluttered and flashed
yet somehow they moved in slow motion.
I wanted to stand,
wanted to reach out and touch them but…
I couldn't move,
and yet I laughed
ignoring my dry mouth
and the tingling in my feet.
There was a tempest
on the rise
and in my blood.
A sugar rush disguised
as a riot of butterflies
and they were swarming me.
There was a small vial
of insulin in my pocket
that I nev
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