Nova Observatory Grounds - Tyrest
Moving through the Residential Sector towards the grounds that house the Nova Observatory, the elevation finally levels off and deposits you onto a flat plain of shiny metal. A janitor busies himself, moving through the area with a large buffer to keep up appearances. The decorum is more, a little on the side of excess, fanciful than the rest of the city. Even if the architecture isnt as up to date as the newer sections of the city, it is still kept clean and shining. Other than the occasional housing unit for upscale residents, the area is a large park that leads up to the only real attraction on this side of the city; the Nova Observatory.
It's going to be a long march to the shuttle and it's one that Chromia is content to let Trailbreaker lead the way. It will be easier to keep an eye on him that way, as he's well out of earshot ahead with Fireflight. Chromia hangs back, purposefully, as she walks with Torque. She's silent for a good while as the long walk starts, feeling the effects of the Nightmare Fuel that she slammed back but also collecting her thoughts. It's been a long day. Finally, she speaks.
"The things you do, you can do. The building. Have you ever thought about why you do them?"
That's pretty out there, but remember, Chromia is somewhat intoxicated and feeling vulnerable. So, she reaches for a more abstract question to help break (her own) tension without putting it together on how much such a question might hint at her current thinking. "Have you always been a mechanic?"
Torque had only had two sips of the potent drink, so she's only feeling a mild buzz at this point. Probably wasn't a good idea to accept it in the first place, but.. well, she'll have to deal with Prime when she's confronted about it. Not eager to deal with the drunk mess that is Trailbreaker, she allows Fireflight to take charge of him for the moment and instead takes up the rear with the blue femme.
She almost doesn't hear the question, a little lost in thought, but the medic flicks an antenna and glances up and sidelong to the taller bot. "Me? Well.. most of my life, I suppose." Amber eyes fall to the path ahead and she weakly rolls a shoulder. "Was originally trained to just be a medic, but.. after some events I found I was a pretty good mechanic too. Why do you ask?" Gaze flicks back with a curious glimmer in them.
"Sometimes I wonder. If all of this," Chromia gestures outward, to all of Cybertron, "Hadn't happened how things might be. Elita would still be Ariel, there would have been no Optimus for Orion to become and we wouldn't be pulled apart like we've become. Life was simplier, order and yet..." Chromia shakes her head and gives a defeated snort. "This, who I am now, it feels more right than the me I was long, long... long, long, long ago." She gives a little chuckle. "Sometimes I fear what that means." She did have a great deal of the Fuel than her walking companion. Torque had two sips? Chromia took two drinks and then some of one of Trailbreakers and yet... it doesn't feel like enough, not for tonight. When she catches up to Breaker at the shuttle she'll have to remedy that. "This conflict, it's shaped all of us. Transformed us. Into what we're supposed to be? Are we going to have to do it again, to become something else because, Primas help me, I don't want that. I've seen too much become lost to also have to lose myself," she sighs as she walks, a bit slower now. She'll et Trailbreaker get further ahead but still within sight. "If that makes any sense," she grins, because Chromia is not sure it does.
She looks to Torque as they march on. "What was that back there, about you and him," she thumbs forward to where Trailbreaker goes. "What'd he do to you?" She's quite curious. Chromia looks ahead again. "Don't worry about the Prime, by the way." She smiles. "You're a worrier too, aren't you? But, you shouldn't worry about that. Rodimus?" She grins broadly, "He's harmless. A lot of talk and ultimately, he wants to be your friend."
Torque has never figured Chromia for the philosophical type, so it's curious to hear her speak such things. "It makes sense, yeah." She smirks in return, but this only lasts a moment before mind wades into the deep end of thought. "But.." Torque begins slowly and gestures in a general manner. "If things were still like that I don't think we would've gotten anywhere. For one, we'd still be under the Quints. And even though I'm not fond of the war.. I will agree that it's changed us. For better or for worse, I'm not sure, but I know that I've grown for the better."
A certain thought trickles in and forces an embarrassed smile onto her face. "I was kind of a wimp back in the day, if you'll believe it. But.. I learned to adapt. If this is what I'm supposed to be then I'm not complaining." Then Chromia mentions Trailbreaker, forcing a grunt from her and a roll of optics. "Nothin' big. Just kicked me off the comms a few times and eavesdropped my radio chatter back there. And ah.." A pause, lips pursing until a sheepish smirk curls lips. "I know about Prime. I just.. well, I don't like mechs gettin' me into trouble is all. I'm not super worried."
"That's me too. Better," Chromia frowns. It's a thought that bothers her, if not plagues her. "Before, I never would have thought this is what I would become, who I am now but now I also know I would do anything to protect it. Myself. All of the things I've had to see, to endure... yet, it's because of those things that I am what I've become." She shakes her head. Chromia really isn't the philosopher but she does think. She just bottles a lot of it up and so it's easier to let some of that out when she's slightly intoxicated, and with someone she feels like she can trust. Torque seems... quirky, youthful and that is encouraging to know it can still exist. It's charmingly comforting. "You're a good bot," she says seemingly at random, perhaps not realizing she spoke aloud. "Hah, you were a wimp? I was a doormat, literally," Chromia chuckles though as it hits that she shared *that* she immediately darkens, her brow tightening again.
Fortunately, she has something else she can answer to as Torque says more. "Breaker's a good bot too. He's ..." She looks ahead to where he's gotten to. "I think he wants us all to forget, or at least not to be consumed by everything. To not become lost to what's around us. He's shielding us," Chromia grins as that thought seems to 'click' and make sense. "I think that's why I can work with him, even if we do it in opposite ways. Breaker thinks it's right to keep the truth from other bots, even himself, to spare them. I think you need to hit them over the head with it, to prepare them. Or to keep them aware." Here she looks to Torque once more and smiles. "It's hard to imagine somebot like you being in trouble."
Torque notes the drastic shift in Chromia, after she let's a bit of her past slip in, and quickly tries to bring a little light to the dark. "And now lookit you. One of the toughest femmes I've met. I know we're created with everything in our heads, but I always like to think there's room for improvement. However.. well, I imagine, despite us changing, we still hold onto a little bit of our original self in one way or another."
Hands rest gingerly on her hips to compensate for lack of pockets and the smaller dredges up a weak smile to keep unsure expression at bay. "Trailbreaker's a nice guy, yeah, but.. well, I guess I just worry sometimes." There she goes, worrying again. "I can understand enjoying a drink now and then, but when you get him to the bar he just completely lets go. Like not even drinking to enjoy it anymore. I just wonder if he needs someone to talk to or something.." She sighs and rubs her forehead, but stops suddenly at Chromia's comment and murmurs warily, hand now working over her neck. "Not usually, but.. well, let's just say you don't wanna see me mad when I'm drunk." Another past memory flickers across her vision and she shudders ever so slightly. Torque hates when that old side comes back out.
"He's there when we need him to be. As long as he still shows up and does the job he's tasked to do..." Chromia shrugs. It's hard to *NOT* see Breaker's 'habit' and worry, but honestly? "He's earned it. Maybe? I don't honestly know, but if he's that into the Fuel, he's got to have his reasons. We all have our scars. Some of us wear them in different ways," she notes. "It's hard to think of any Arkian that has endured that much," when put against, you know, any one of the bots that didn't leave Cybertron. Like her new best friend Torque here. Chromia grins as she thinks on that, though she doesn't share what she's grinning for. "Maybe he needs it for himself, to shield himself from what plagues him. You get mad?" Chromia gives a little chuckle. "I didn't expect that. I haven't heard any tales of you getting fiesty, hah," Chromia laughs. It's short but it feels good. Torque is comforting. She's... real, and Chromia has missed that. "I don't know if I'd go with 'toughest'. Arcee took..." She falls silent and walks for many paces before she talks again. "Let's go with stubborn. I'm good at being stubborn."
That stirs something in Chromia as she looks ahead to Trailbreaker and Fireflight, to make sure they are well out of earshot. Rather than wait to find Torque again in the morning... "About that. Being stubborn. I'm going after Shockwave. It's for what he's done to Cybertron, to Elita... for so many reasons. When Arcee's back to herself again... *that* is what I need your help with. I don't mean to take you with us, to put you in that kind fo danger." Yet, Chromia is sharing this secret plan with the full realization that it might mean Torque would request more involvement. "I was wondering if you could build us something, something to hold him long enough to get him to Iacon. Maybe something that would enduce a stasis lock."
Torque's gaze follows along the path to view the bumbling mech as well, features creasing slightly and voice sounding a little distant. "I.. suppose. We've all got our reasons to drink.." Chromia's chuckle catches her off guard and garners an amused look from the medic, dentals flashing in a grin that wards off her thoughts. "Not unless it's needed, trust me. Especially in the medbay. Mechs straighten up by then, cause yah don't wanna make the medic mad when they can knock yah back out again."
There's a little more spring in her step at this point, Torque rather enjoy Chromia's company. Why haven't they spoken much before? It's a mystery, but she's glad to be breaking the ice. The blue femme is.. interesting. Stubborn, sure, but good natured. Only stubborn is winning out as she relays her plans to the medic.
Optics flash wide in surprise, mouth opening to protest such an idea, but she shuts herself up and makes herself listen with a cautious audial. "I.." Torque hesitates, her voice much quieter so only Chromia can hear. "I can do it, but.. are you sure this is something you wanna do? I understand wanting justice, revenge, but Shockwave is.. tough." How else can she put it? The next words are said with care, as if she were searching and picking each one from her mind after appraising it. "And.. I know you said you don't want me to come, but I can and will if you really need me." Rigid expression gives way to a shadow of a frown when looking sheepishly up to the taller femme. She feels.. a bit small right now when up against such a daunting task, which is very unlike her. Maybe because it just seems so crazy.. Still, Torque wants to help, and that's all that matters.
"It's time," Chromia says, deathly even. She takes a cycle in silence as she nods. "It is. For him, for me... if it doesn't go well, if he were to kill me... It's not going to get any better or any easier. What he did to Elita woke me up to that realization, that unless we make it happen, it never will. The others, the Arkians mostly, they don't *know*. They might of read reports and been told but... it's different." Being one of those left behind, left to Shockwave's whims. "I couldn't got o Wheeljack for this request but you.... you know." Chromia nods again. "You don't have to go with us. Arcee and I, we know the risks, we accept them. We have for a long time. However, if you are sure, I won't stop you. You have just as much of a right to justice as any of us." Chromia looks to Torque here as she comes to a stop, to face and stare at her fellow bot.
Why *haven't* they ever talked before? Yet, even though they haven't, they're still sisters. Remotely related, perhaps, yet still... Torque understands, right? All the years, all of the hardships, the way those things have forged them. "There's no going back, only moving forward," she says softly. It's something Elita taught her, something that Chromia very much holds onto. "I'd be honored to take that road together."
Torque wasn't with Elita's group of femmes when they were all stranded on Cybertron, so it sometimes felt a little strange when the medic got into their business. They had a bond that spanned a long time, so even attempting to be part of this plan of theres feels odd, if only slightly. Still.. they're nice and clearly determined, which she respects. And looking back on what Shockwave has done over the years...
Torque catches herself absentmindedly observing her own fist, stirring out of the mire that was the memory of punching the cyclops, and turns to meet Chromia's gaze. "I'm sure." Determination rings out in her voice and posture draws up to a proper stance as hand draws up to meet the other in a firm hold and lips quirk into a warm smirk. "Besides, gonna need someone there to patch you femmes up once the job is done."
"Where were you when the rust hit the combuster?" Chromia chuckles, openly. If only they had Torque since the beginning... they could have done more, been better. Yet, they have Torque now. "I just need to make sure to never make you mad. You did warn me about the effect that could have on your bedside manner," she winks. She might be drunk but not too much to be sloppy with the details. Chromia turns to resume the walk, since Trailbreaker and Fireflight and now a bit further ahead than she meant to let them get. "I am normally the one that looks after everyone else. I don't let just anyone look after me...," she calls out as an invitation to stay with her. Already she trusts Torque, which for Chromia is not a common thing. It might take stellar cycles for her to trust somebot but Torque's earned it already. Maybe due the the willingness to maybe getting killed to join her and Arcee on a secret mission they dare not talk about for fear of being stopped.
"Sooooo, what's this about you and the Con, Backfire isn't it?"
Torque snickers faintly and falls in step beside Chromia. "I wouldn't worry, I'm usually pretty nice. Takes a lot to get me fired up." A brief glance her way brings out a jovial little smile from her as she continues, "Well you know I've got your back. It's my job to make sure you all don't go fallin' to pieces, after all." Such is the burden of a medic, to ensure the safety of all. Not that Torque minds, of course. In fact she enjoys it.
...Dear Primus, she didn't just mention Backfire, did she? "Err.." Welp, can't really dodge this again.. "It's complicated. Sort of." Torque trails off, but eventually sighs wearily and brings up a hand to rub her face. "Okay, not entirely. I have no idea what's wrong with that mech's processor.. that he doesn't have." There was only a light in his head. Seriously. "I think he's obsessed with me, but also wants to kill me at the same time? I try to get through to him whenever we bump into each other, but he's pretty damn stubborn. Or loyal. Or stupid. They all kinda blend together with him.."
"Sounds like a typical Con to me," Chromia rolls her eyes and shakes her head. All of them... faulty wiring, she swears! "Don't get me wrong, I can see why he would obsess, but still. You seem... almost defensive of him," Chromia ponders as she looks to Torque. "I'm not judging. Who am I to judge! Whatever gets your processor spinning, you know... However, like I said, I do stubborn. He sounds, well... broken. And you're the bot that fixes, right?" She gives a little facial nod to see if you follow her line of thinking there. It seems natural that the busted bot would gravitate towards the one that could patch him up, just as it makes sense that the mender would be drawn to that which needs fixing. "If half of what I overheard concerning him is true, then Backfire might be more broken than normal, which means you might be leverage to get him to ... well, behave." Something to consider. "Also, hey, at least he's not an Insecticon," Chromia shivers and makes a grossed out face.
Torque bristles a little at that, her shoulders stiffening and hands coming up with palms out to try and hurriedly wave away and suspicions. "It's not what you think! Honest!" She almost pleads to be believed. "It's entirely one sided. But.." She can't keep it up for long and sighs deeply, her entirely slumping under the weight of reality. "It's just.. I feel bad for him. And for others. I know that makes me sound like a Con sympathizer, but.." She racks her brain for the right words, visibly struggling to sound sane. "I don't like the Cons. I'm a Bot, through and through. But sometimes I can't help but feel sorry for them. I know we're at war, but they're Cybertronians too. If I can't show a little compassion, to stoop to their level and needlessly kill, then what am I?" She frowns up to Chromia, looking for her thoughts. "I'm a medic. I gave an oath to protect those in need, no matter who they are. I know a lot of folks think they don't deserve to live, but I'm sure some of them can be turned in the right direction.."
Torque has probably repaired more Cons than she's killed, and even then the latter is very small. But she won't tell Chromia that, too afraid such information would have her put on trial or something. "But Backfire.. maybe he can be fixed, I dunno. He's so screwed up, even just physically, that I wouldn't know where to start. I'm sure I'll figure something out.."
"Until all are one, right? It's kind of our belief they can be saved, that we can be united. Again... well, maybe not again, but for the first time. I don't think it's wrong to feel sorry for them, as long as you know that feeling sorry only extends to them being wrong, not for what they have done. Or would do. Their strength comes from exerting their own rather than recognizing that in others. So, no Torque, I don't think you're a Con sympathizer, not by far. I think you're a better Bot than me for still holding out hope, to have that much faith still." Because for Chromia? She's not so sure. She tries to rally a grin however. "If only they were all like Blast Off, skilled and useful, sure, but mostly just arrogant and full of heated backdraft." She turns to meet Torque's optics. "I wish I still had pity for all of them. Only some, defintely not for others." She's seen way too much to forget.
Yet, Chromia still grins. "Well, if you need someone to hold him down while you do sort it out, I'll be that bot for you." She thumbs to her chestplate for emphasis. You've promised to help her so she'd be foolish to not do the same in return.
Torque could hug Chromia, she really could. But to keep from making things awkward, she refrains and instead smiles thoughtfully while leaning over to bump the femme. "Appreciate that.. Good to know I'm not going crazy or anything. Heh, I don't think it'd be hard to turn someone like Blast Off. The mech seems more interested in class than conquest." Optics focus on her feet and lips skew a little. "I just try to see the good in everyone. Even the dregs need someone to care about them. I saw too much when I was living on Monacus for a time to think otherwise." Optics dim when focusing on a thought and a waning smile flits across her face. "It's interesting, and kinda sad, when you try to help them. They're wary and uncertain, thinking it's some sort of trick that somehow an Autobot would want to help them when not even their own lift a hand."
But she's rambling now, which she catches and shifts topics gladly. "Heh, you'll be the first I call if that happens. Anyway.. what's up with you and Trailbreaker?" Now it's her turn to ask the question, though hers isn't accusatory. Instead she just wonders. "I've never seen that mech move as fast as he did when you showed up."
"Sometimes those that look out for others need someone to look out for them. Trailbreaker..." Chromia looks ahead to where the forcefielder has gone. "He's another bot for me to look after," she thinks. Yet... she can trust him too, can't she? That's hard to come by, so she values it. "He's frustrating, that's for sure, mostly because of this protecting bots from things act that he has going on, that it's okay that none of the hard stuff lands. He doesn't let it through, right?" She motions up to where he goes with Fireflight. "You worry about his drinking? Well, I think for a guy who *can* keep everything out a surprising amount of it gets through. I get that. I *am* that." It's been forever - four million plus years - since she's had someone that has understood her. Her relationship with Ironhide wasn't... typical? It wasn't like Ariel and Orion, that's for sure. It was like... spark-mates, in that it was someone that 'got' her. Elita and the Femmes have valued her, respected her but no one aside from Ironhide has ever really *got* her. Trailbreaker... maybe he could. "I think he's so jumpy because he knows I know... you know? I keep him on his toes," she grins, rather broadly. "So far, he's keeping me on mine too."
After that bump, well, Chromia is a little wobbly. Likely due to all of that Nightmare Fuel she slammed down. So, she steadies herself, by slinging an arm around Torque to give a rather uncharistically friendly gesture to. It's rare, if ever, that she would lean on someone else but then... maybe Torque could use that as much as Chromia could. It's not exactly an embrace but it's the kind of things friends would do, right? Even new friends. "Thank you, Torque, for seeing the good in me." She... softens as that is genuine, from her core. She feels she is what she's had to be for so long... "And in all of them too," she grins, using her free hand to gesture outward to Tyrest and beyond. "Even him," Chromia chuckles as she ends that with a point to Trailbreaker. "Speaking of... we're almost there. We should catch up to make sure he doesn't break anything at the shuttle, and thus give you *more* things to fix."
Torque isn't as well versed in relationships, never having had a spark-mate, so she's a little unsure as to how to add to the subject. So she just nods and smiles with a bit of wit lined up. "It's good to find someone like that. Heh, and if you're keepin' him on his toes then maybe you can do me a favor. Make the mech do some exercise or somethin'. He's a strong guy, but with the way those arms were shakin' holding that beam he could stand to pick up some weights now and then." She smirks cheekily up to the femme hanging on her now, easily taking the weight. "And if he complains? Tell him it's doctor's orders."
Optics follow along to the two ahead, once Chromia points them out, and nods. "Good idea. I swear, if that mech breaks anything I'm gonna slap him upside the head. Or worse, give him a dose of somethin' to sober him up." Leave it to a medic who likes to drink to have a drunk cure on hand. How else do you think she gets into work after a night of bar hopping? And so, with a new friend on her shoulder, and in arm as one steadies her, she strikes off ahead towards their destination.
"Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey." Trailbreaker can be heard, leaning out of the Golden Age's entrance. "Guys, hey." he stops, giving each Torque and Chromia a once over before continuing.
"Isn't it crazy that we turn into vehicles but like we're riding in a vehicle? Isn't that crazy??" he asks, taking a long sip from his Nightmare Fuel.
Transforming, Trailbreaker drives around inside the Golden Age. <<Haha, vehicle inside a vehicle.. this is crazy!!>>
Trailbreaker transforms into his Toyota 4WD Camper Truck <Trailbreaker> mode.
"What I wouldn't give to be Inferno right about now, hose him down...," Chromia mutters as she catches up to Soberbreaker. She unleans from Troque with a sigh as she sees she's going to have to take this on more directly. At least now they have him cornered, where he should be more manageable. "Hey," she calls out, "You're driving in something that flies. Imagine if we were on liquid. wWhoah," she makes a brain-explodey motion with her hands.
Torque was all smiles up until Trailbreaker reared his drunk head again. The femme just sighs in that longsuffering way and trudges on in after them, muttering softly. "This is gonna be a long ride. Just buckle him in so he doesn't fall all over himself."
Trailbreaker is already fast asleep, in a random recharge cycle, his hand craned around the bottle of Nightmare Fuel.
Chromia looks and finds some rope and uses that to 'buckle' Soberbreaker in. By that, it's more of a tying him up and tying him down. Now, won't that be something to wake up to. She then means to snag his unfisnished bottle to then salute Torque with it. "Wake me when we get there?" She means to find her own recharge station, but not before trying to forget the long day one last time.
Torque lazily salutes back and offers a lopsided smile. "You got it. I'm gonna go chat with Fireflight, so you two enjoy the nap." They probably need it. so, with that said, Torque ambles off to find the flier while they wait for Rodimus.