Summary: Rodimus Prime returns, but why is he so keen on putting up a border fence to keep out Mexicans?
A large rectangular table sits squarely in the middle of the room, with chairs large enough to fit your average Cybertronian situated around it. A holoviewer sits in the middle of the table, currently displaying the Autobot symbol. The walls are wood-paneled and arranged on them are various pictures of Cybertron in the Golden Age.
<Autobot> Rodimus Prime says, "All Autobots, this is your commander, Rodimus Prime. Report to the Meeting Room /immediately/."
<Autobot> Raindance says, "Yes sir Rodimus sir!"
<Autobot> City Commander Ultra Magnus says, "On my way."
<Autobot> Whirligig says, "On it, sir."
<Autobot> Markdown says, "On the way, sir!"
<Autobot> Yellowjacket says, "Well, since you asked so nicely."
<Autobot> Rodimus Prime says, "I didn't ask anything. That was an order."
<Autobot> Rodimus Prime says, "/Yellowjacket/."
<Autobot> Yellowjacket says, "Oh heavens, you remembered my name. At long last."
<Autobot> Arcee says, "Coming, Rodimus!
<Autobot> Powerglide says, "Sup, guys?"
DepthCharge steps casually into the meeting room, carrying with him about five different datapads. After all, meetings always provide the perfect opportunity to catch up on other work while you listen to debates being tossed back and forth until someone comes up with a decision. "
Markdown stomps in, a grim look on his face as he takes in the meeting room, and all the Autobots arriving.
Yellowjacket is here now. He didn't walk in or anything. He's just here now. The diminutive commando is leaning against a wall, studying the fingers on his left hand.
Raindance bobs into the meeting room, his internal systems whirring as he films everyone. "Cheese, Depthcharge!" he happily chirps as he whirls about the Aquabots head. "I wonder what Rodimus wants us for, I bet it is a special mission! Just for me!"
Arcee hurries to help out Rodimus Prime because she's just so helpful!
A-10 Thunderbolt <Powerglide> arrived the moment he heard that foxy femme known as Arcee was going to be there. The minibot saunters on into the meeting room and flashes everyone a thumbs up. "Hey guys!" he calls out, waiting a couple moments so that the inevitable applause for his arrival can die down.
Already having found a spot in a quiet corner, Punch's gaze settled in briefly on Yellowjacket before studying each person newly entering. Waiting patiently for Rodimus to begin, the Autobot's presence is a return from wherever he'd been visiting. Probably Cybertron. Powerglide also arrived in robot mode.
Whirligig steps in quietly, her wings carefully tipped down to avoid nailing anyone... and she's extremely careful to avoid bashing anyone with her tail. She looks curious but, at the same time, a bit concerned.
Hands on his hips, Ultra Magnus stands towards the back of the meeting room as others arrive, watching with a calm gaze. He says little, just gives a nod here and there, a "Oh, hello Goldbug," off-handedly as Yellowjacket is just suddenly there, and for the large part just observes. This isn't his meeting, after all. "... hmm."
Mute walks in, a glove puppet on one hand. It looks like a yellow bear with black nose and ears. It also has a magic wand. Probably best not to ask. He walks over and finds a seat near to DepthCharge and his flying brother.
Rodimus Prime stands in front of a projector, frowning so hard that the wrinkles on his face look even worse. They're actually trenches, dug out with the shovels of age and anger.
"/Autobots/, sit down. This is going to begin shortly. I don't have time to sit through social hour. All optics on me and my," he taps the projector screen with a baton, "Powerpoint presentation." Rodimus clears his robo-throat and taps his foot, optic sensors narrow little light discs.
"/Comfortable/? Good. In light of the recent energon crisis, I have come up with a perfect plan in order to replenish our reserves." The powerpoint clicks on and there's a picture of Alaska, then another picture, then a picture of some delightful polar bears and moose and a hybrid car being driven by a friendly looking suburban dad. "SHUT UP OUT THERE." He again clears his robo throat, tapping the projector screen again. "Starting tomorrow at 0600, we will be strip mining all of Alaska for Energon. I've been given approval by the EDC. Your mining assigments are all on these datapads." He THWAPS his baton against a pile of datapads. "Get ready for /work/, people."
Arcee quietly shushes Powerglide with a helpful finger to her lips.
Raindance is quiet for a bit. And then "Uh sir, no offense, but isn't that an area of extreme natural beauty? People live there, I doubt the EDC would just /give/ it away..."
Markdown's optics widen for a moment, then he hurriedly shuffles over to a vacant seat. Whenever Rodimus is cranky, it can't be good.
Powerglide hurries to find a seat next to Arcee and shuts up, at least for now. Rodimus looks like he's in one of those moods. No problem, ol' Powerglide knows how to keep it real. He does his best to pay attention. The cute little Powerpoint animations help out. Mining? He opens his vocalizer to protest that he's a pilot, not a miner, but manages to stop himself in time.
Yellowjacket just barely suppresses a shudder. He looks up at Ultra Magnus, gesturing vaguely at the much larger robot, but can't quite think of an adequate response. He sighs, then turns to regard Rodimus Prime as he begins his Powerpoint presentation. The minibot squints. He makes emphatic gestures again. Then crosses his arms and shakes his head. "Honestly, Rodimus. If you're going to engage in this human ritual of 'April Fools,' at least wait for the proper day."
Whirligig sort of... shrinks back a little. She doesn't like the idea of strip mining, but.. well, who is she to argue with /Rodimus Prime/ of all mechs? And mentioning the generator, she realizes, is a poor idea... while it was built to specs to help Metroplex fly, she knows there's no way they could /rely/ on it for an energy source. So, the engineer just stays quiet and hopes for the best. She already has a bad feeling about this. Just a nasty, awful feeling in the pit of her tanks... and the feeling isn't going away.
Mute looks at Sooty, who looks back, Mute's optics are somewhat wide. Sooty shakes his head in his little cute paws for a moment and looks up, looks back to the powerpoint projection, then back at Mute. The two can't seem to think oif anything to say to this.
Scorch seems to have actually listened to what was said but looses all intrest at the word work. He's sure as hell not about to give up his lazy days to dig a hole in the ground. Keeping quiet for now the only sign of disgust he shows is a slight grumbling as he shifts in his seat.
There wasn't any frown, infact Punch merely tilted his head ever so slightly not only at the presentation, but at their Leader's words. If he thought they weren't synching up with what they'd come to expect from Rodimus Prime or the Autobots interaction with humans and the environment...he didn't give much more than that. Even when Yellowjacket spoke up.
Arcee quietly frowns, peering at Rodimus intently.
Magnus can't help but squint in tandem with Yellowjacket as Rodimus makes his explanations. Arms lifting to cross over his broad chest, the Autobot City Commander leans in to scrutinize with a look that is, at best, respectfully incredulous. "... Rodimus." He pauses, looks back towards the others. "Stripping Alaska? It's an important ecosystem, doing that would be more than dangerous to the surrounding environment." Ultra Magnus hesitates for a moment. "--Is this one of your jokes...?"
DepthCharge hmms to himself, tapping away on his datapad as he opens a new file and begins typing away. "Personally, I prefer renewable energy over strip mining." The Aquabot comments. "After all. Once something is gone, it is gone."
Rodimus Prime clutches his baton in his left hand, as if casually strangling it. His optics widen at Raindance. He steps over to the smaller robot, feet alternately pounding and squeaking against the hard floor. "Excuse me? What was that?" And then Yellowjacket. "EXCUSE ME? This is SHUT UP time, Yellowjacket, not talk back time." He crosses his arms over his chest, baton crumpling into dust against his chest. The insides of his arm-pipe-lasers glow the same angry shade as his optic sensors.
"Raindance? Yellowjacket? Just for that, all Autobots smaller than," he puts his hand out and kneels, his hand coming to the top of where Arcee's head would be if she was standing next to him, "this will be ASSIGNED to Mexico. You're on border patrol, little robots. And it's going to suck. Your fence building instructions will be forwarded. /Someone/ has to keep out the Mexicans."
Rodimus' jaw drops at DepthCharge and Magnus. "You're both demoted. To border patrol. Peacekeeper will arrange for you to be transferred into new casette bodies. I will /personally/ assign your shovels..."
Markdown gapes. He was about to add something to this whole business about mining for oil, but... he much prefers living here in San Francisco! His mouth is soon sealed shut, and he sits uneasily in his chair.
"But sir!" Raindance emits. "I don't have any hands, how will I patrol the border! Though I guess I could missile all the Mexicans.. but REALLY sir, I am a reporter. I report, I do not /do/!" He hovers a bit lower, floating backwards slightly
This, Powerglide cannot stay quiet for! "Whaaaa? What'd /I/ do?" he protests. "Why am *I* being punished because Raindance and Yellowjacket didn't know how to shut their traps?" he complains. The minibot doesn't really care whether he gets the crap job of mining or the also-crap job of building a fence, but he doesn't like getting punished.
At this point, Whirligig is /staring/. Gawking, even. The engineer femme really has no idea what to do. Or say. Or /think/. She'd never actually personally /met/ Rodimus prior to this point, but... well... she really is wondering if that's such a bad thing. Her mouth moves soundlessly. Nope. Nothing she can think of to even /retort/. This is one baffled femme.
DepthCharge gives Rodimus a casual look and shrugs, he's been demoted before. For worse infringements on Autobot regulations. Rank means nothing to him as he's certainly kept up his wayward ways despite being thrown to rank 3. "Of course sir. Rank 2 I guess?" The Autobot replies, "But the fact still remains that I believe your logic is flawed."
Suddenly, the sound of muffled laser fire can be heard on the other side of the meeting room's thick blast doors. The door's hinges glow white-hot before exploding in a blast of vaporized metal, the massive slab tumbling forward with a resounding THUD throughout the chamber. A silhouette stands in the smoke shrouded doors, stumbling forward out of the smoke. A pair of smoking standard Autobot-issue pistols are clutched in each hand as the mech steps forward, his blue optics flaring once with indignation.
"EVERYBODY STOP! I'VE GOT SOMETHING TO SAY!" The figure cries out hoarsely, firing one of the laser pistols in the air to gain everyone's attention if he doesn't have it already. Should you turn to look, you will see... Rodimus Prime? His paintjob is faded and chipped, and bits of garbage and detritus cling to his normally highly-polished frame. A five o' clock shadow of rust covers his face... But otherwise, he looks exactly like Rodimus. Identical to the robot standing at the meeting room's podium, in fact.
Right, strip mining Alaska is one thing, enough to shock Mute, annoy him certainly. But this?!? Insulting cassettes, even Elita One wasn't this rude, and she was a b*tch. Mute gets up from his chair and literly kicks it back to send it flying against the wall. The little guy then proceeds to throw Sooty to the ground (who incidentally looks really really annoyed even before being thrown down) and leaps onto the meeting table. Arcee is actually size 6, which means a lot of Autobots are going to be 'making a run for the border.' "Rodimus, I think you're taking this joke too-" Suddenly, A Challenger Comes!
Now that, even Punch can't ignore. He straightened ever so slightly, the edge of his mouth flicking downward. If he'd had any doubt about something going on or some kind of chain of command ploy he was unaware of...this was something the intelligence analyst couldn't figure out at a glance. What was going on here exactly? Instead of piping up and getting demoted, exiled, or whichever Rodimus Prime seemed to be doling out on the fly, he stayed his voice, waiting it out. If it wasn't some elaborate prank-- Punch froze, turning to look again.
"...Oh this is just rich." He muttered.
Yellowjacket gasps. "PRIMUS!" he shouts. "That other Rodimus Prime is holding two pistols in EACH HAND!"
Raindance turns back and forth between the two Rodimii. "By Primus!" he cries. "Its a TIME PARADOX! Don't let them touch each other!"
Powerglide jumps to his feet. "WE MUST HAVE A RACE TO DETERMINE WHICH ONE IS THE REAL RODIMUS PRIME!" Powerglide suddenly blurts out with a crazed look on his face.
Peacekeeper raises an optic-ridge at Rodimus' general demeanor, and shifts a slight glance over to Whirligig. Something really isn't right--and the explosion near the door and the apearance of /another/ Rodimus startles her back to her feet and confirms it. Her optics narrow as her medical scanners begin to run, trying to see if there were any differences between the two Rodimus'.
"... Demoted?" Ultra Magnus asks, looking for a rare moment, shocked. Blue optics close in a blink. "Rodimus, are you serious? This doesn't even make sense. Why would you have us transferred into smaller bodies? This isn't like you at all." Magnus goes silent for a while, looking MILDLY suspicious. "None of what you've said has made any--"
Which is right when Rodimus Prime barges in.
Ultra Magnus stares for a long time, simply stunned beyond words. He looks to the angry, constipated, authoritarian Matrix Templar Rodimus. Than suddenly to the new arrival. Back again. And then: "By Primus. A -Doppleganger-!?"
"As much as I think Powerglide is a moron, I believe he is correct in this one instance," Yellowjacket intones. "On the other hand, I mean... it's pretty obvious that the REAL Rodimus is the one up on stage there." There's that inscrutable dry humour again... OR IS IT. Markdown turns around, gaping again at the NEW Rodimus. "Wha-wha?" He stands up, pulling out his laser pistol. "Now, I don't get it! Mining Alaska for oil sounded like a GREAT idea... but then Rodimus started going postal on us just for looking at him sideways! You know, come to think of it..." He points the pistol at the fresh and clean Rodimus on the podium. "I don't think YOU'RE real."
Whirligig jumps and she turns... to find another Rodimus. She looks back and forth, startled, optics glowing brightly. "What in the world...?!" Then she looks toward the new Rodimus. "Who... which one's the real Rodimus?"
Looking from one to the other, Mute is boggled. He then gets an idea, maybe someone is using holograms. Now normally he would just shoot one with a low powered laser beam, but that might be taken the wrong way. So he does the only thing he can... aims himself for the Prime most likely to be fake (ie the dumb strip mining one) and charges for him, intent on either running through or running into him (oh and he's using his fake horsey and making clip clopping noises while doing it, anything to keep his sanity right now).
Scorch groans as another Rodimus arrives on the scene. "Just whats not need. Ones Rodsimus am bads nuff, now we haves two. Me Scorch no likes dis one bits."
"The one who's not a Republican is CLEARLY the real Rodimus Prime!" exclaims Arcee, clapping her hands. "Oh Rodimus, you've come back to us!"
Optics glowing bright yellow and pitching sparks out into the open air, the first Rodimus points his arm, photon-trios at the rustier Rodimus. "Autobots, it's a..." he looks at Ultra Magnus, "Doppleganger!! Attack!!" He steps forward and squints, but no lasers come out of his arm-trinities. He just mutters "pewpewpew" under his breath.
"Damn you, Autobots! We are a highly trained DEATH SQUAD! KILL HIM!!"
"pewpewpew. I'm out of ammo!!"
DepthCharge stands and walks back against one of the meeting room walls and then slowly fades away into nothingness. Anyone with enhanced sensors might now detect DepthCharge quickly stepping up into the air and hovering towards the meeting room doors and out; into the command center. He's going to activate a lock down until this madness is sorted.
Powerglide backpedals until he's up against the wall next to DepthCharge. He stares at Rodimus and rusty-Rodimus, trying to decipher which of them looks like they might be slower than the other. It's the only reliable way. "You know, I'd like to be able to say I was surprised," he tells DepthCharge. "I'd /like/ to be able to..." but of course DC is already vanishing.
Markdown grins. "I knew it. You aren't out of ammo--those cannons on your arms are fake, like the rest of you!" He aims the pistol more purposefully. "Shame, though--we could've made a buncha money off that Alaskan oil."
Whirligig takes several steps back. Okay, she's no warrior. She does /not/ want to get blasted in all this psychoticness. She's just an engineer! She builds things! "I have no idea what is going on in here but I swear to Primus I had nothing to do with it!" No building false Rodimuses for her. Way too much of a chance for that to backfire.
Peacekeeper eyes the 'Rodimus' standing at the podium, then slowly moves back and out of the way so that if there is any possible crossfire, she won't be caught in it. At this rate, she's inclined to believe that the scruffier Rodimus is the true Prime--and it seems like she's not the only one to believe as such.
Arcee pounces the fake Rodimus and starts pulling on his head. "When you told us to build a wall across Mexico I should've realized it was you in there... RON PAUL!" If his head doesn't actually come off and reveal the withered, evil old face of Ron Paul she's going to be embarrassed.
Scorch gets to his feet glaring at the nice clean looking Rodimus. "What am dis 'pewpew' stuffs? Tink you open mouth now and says fore me Scorch gets mad and smush you into stuff dat smells pewpew." As he speaks he reaches back and draws his sword letting it power up for use.
Punch folded his arms, not bothering to draw any weapons just yet. There were enough already pulled and rather he was hoping no one got too trigger happy because he wasn't planning to get shot by another Autobot for...well, he just didn't want to get sent to the repairbay for something as rediculous as this. Whether which was the real Rodimus was a very huge concern for him, not only for the obvious reasons-- but on a more private matter. Ofcourse, that wasn't to say that he wasn't ready just incase.
Rodimus Prime continues to stumble forward into the meeting room, his servoes whining and grinding in a clear state of abuse and disrepair. He swipes one metal hand across his mouth, wiping away some of the rust that has gathered there. "There won't be any /strip mining/ or /border fences/ today, buddy," Rusty Rodimus snarls, aiming a laser pistol at the mech at the podium. "There's only room in this city for ONE Rodimus Prime!" He starts to ease down on the trigger -- Just as Mute flies into his path of fire!!
"Mute, no! Get out of the way!"
Yellowjacket disappears into the chaos, making his way towards the podium with all the stealth of a very stealthy robot. This is because he is a very stealthy robot.
Echoing through the base, the central computer announces:
ATTENTION! ATTENTION! The base is being sealed. All force-fields are now up.
Raindance hovers over to Powerglide, seeing the minibot is all lonely. "So uh, which do you reckon is real then?" he enquires. "Cos I have one missile on me, and I can totally mess someone up, as if they were a Mexican illegal immigrant"
Just as he reaches the end of the table, Mute hears the order to get out of the way. Alas too late as he goes flying off the table right for the alaska-strip mining border patrol maniac Prime.
The First Rodimus is tackled by Arcee, which causes him to fall to his knees. She is around his back, tugging on his head, which is making the sickening sound of stretching metal, and metal doesn't stretch so much. "Guh! What the hell is a... Ron... Paul..." he grunts. Gritting his robot teeth, he manually opens his chest compartment to reveal a glittering... YELLOW MATRIX!
"Now, Dopplemus Prime, you will taste my MATRIX OF FEAR!" Clean Rodimus howls, putting his robot fingers into the Matrix of Fear's fingerholes. "Open..."
He tries to shake Arcee off.
Still trying to shake Arcee off.
"OPEN!" The Matrix of Fear opens and a YELLOW LASER goes 'pew!' and streaks toward Clean Rodimus.
Arcee is hurled to the ground, raises a hand and exclaims, "Rodimus, look out!"
Squinting in disbelief as Roddy Rotten Rodimus starts to shoot fake laser charges at Rusty Rodimus, Magnus lowers his head into his right hand, rubs his temples, and sighs. "... clones. What is the matter with people and -clones-?" he mutters to himself in quiet complaint. Judging from the fact that the authoritarian Rodimus is clearly shooting nothing and making more absurd claims. All he can do is stare.
"... We're..." he begins, slowly, as 'First Rodimus' starts to unlock his 'Matrix of Fear,' "... going to require a lot of explanation when all of this is said and done." That said, he begins a slow trudge between all the other Autobots towards the First Rodimus, eyes narrowed in annoyance and just plain -confusion-.
Quickswitch stands by, his photon blasters gripped tightly in shaking fists, steeled by the iron grip around them. He looks from one to the other, expression dour and suspicious and creeping with alarm. He was never programmed for this. Blast them both! Blast them--A look of relief--and shock as Arcee tackles the Clean Rodimus, his optics going wide. He points both blasters at the Clean Rodimus', looking distraught as he does so.
Whirligig somehow manages to get as close tot he wall as she possibly can, staring at everyone sort of going nuts in front of her. She's avoiding the situation as best she can for an engineer who really isn't up for... well, anything. Now she's starting to think that going out to test some explosives in the desert was a better idea than coming to this meeting!
Powerglide glances back at Raindance. "Man I have like no idea. I vote we just skip out on this and go grab ourselves some ener-burgers or something. I've got the munchies like you wouldn't believe." He idly keeps a little bit of attention on Rodimus Prime and Dopplemus Prime.
Raindance tuts noisily. "LOOK Powerglide, I have a missile here, and I have to use it. Otherwise it'll just go to waste. Perhaps its all a double bluff, and Arcee is the imposter. I could missile her!"
"Don't even think about it," chides Arcee.
"Ah yes. The old Chekhov's Gun dilemma." Powerglide looks back at Rodimus and Dopplemus, trying to figure out which one is probably real. "Well Arcee is definitely real. Now I know what you're thinking. You're thinking that given how good she looks, that they've got to be fake. But nah, I can tell these things, and they're real." He's talking about robots, right?
Rusty Rodimus scowls as Right-Wing Rodimus opens his chest compartment and reveals a Matrix of his own. "Well played," he mutters, tossing his blasters to the side and rolling out of the way, the yellow blast of energy from his own ersatz Matrix eradicating a portrait of Prowl on the wall of the meeting room.
The Dirty Rodimus kneels in a low crouch, pushing himself back up to his feet and stumbling forward, charging towards his nicer-looking but decidedly more in touch with Middle America version of himself. "Arcee, hold him down! It's time to finish this!!" Rodimus pulls back one fist as he runs forward, clearly intending to clobber someone with it.
Peacekeeper is definitely glad that she's out of the way, and fully intends to remain that way. Unnoticed, one of her throwing-knives appears in one hand as she keeps a wary optic on what's going on, canting a slightly confused (but mostly annoyed-at-the-situation) glance at Whirligig. Seems like she's going to have some work to do to restore Rodimus after all of this is over...
Clean Rodimus rises up, throwing his Matrix of Fear to the side, maybe even toward Quickswitch?! He races toward the dirtier Autobot, Fire Retardant Foam erupting from his robot mouth. "Now you Die, Dopplemus Prime!" He reaches his mighty rigfht fist back and comes in for a punch!
Sadly for Clean Rodimus, his fist hits Dirty Little Roddy's fist. The sound is something like....
And with that, Clean Rodimus turns all grey, falling to the ground. There's a sickiening hissing sound, as his corpse mouths 'pewpewpewminepewpewalaskapewpew' and then he's a pile of ashes with a single robot-sized ring in the middle, fitted with a yellow gem.
Arcee scrambles up to her feet and lunges for Dopplerod, trying to tackle him into the powerpoint screen. "You're going down, you villain!"
Whirligig shrugs toward Peacekeeper, her expression highly concerned, her browridges knitted. The engineer has no idea what's going on, for one. For another? She hasn't the slightest clue what to /do/. She stares then at everything that's going on. What in the world... "What... what just happened?"
Quickswitch shifted forms as rapidly as he ever had, taking on the form of a large beast, with a -shinnnnk!- of extending claws. He lowers his beastial head toward the Clean Rodimus, sniffing cautiously and skeptically at the pile of ashes, then looking back over at the disheavaled version of same, "...*RRRRR*... What the frag is going on?!"
Powerglide watches as Dopplemus Prime meets his end. He's quiet for several seconds. As the adorably vicious Quickswitch-puma enters, the minibot just shrugs. Finally he raises a hand and looks to rusty-Rodimus. "Uh... I have a question, sir."
Raindance slowly hovers over to look at the pile of ashes that was fake-Rodimus. "Well, that's that!" he chirps, rising into the air and floating towards Rodimus. "Good to have to back sir! Do you know when you'll be forwarding those Mexican fence plans?"
Yellowjacket appears again, behind the Fake Rodimus Prime. His hand has turned into a combat knife, and it looks like he was about to use it when Fake Rodimus crumbled apart anyway. He pauses, looking vaguely disappointed and slightly embarrassed.
"Well then," he says, then clears his throat. "We'll just pretend I was never here." Arcee goes right through him as he dissolves and becomes covered in ash. She stands back up looking dismayed and shaking dust off of her hands.
From under the conference table, in a Plume Of Smoke, Pipes appears. "Whoa, bros! What did I miss? It sounded like there was... an OPERA!" Pipes doesn't wait for an answer, he just ducks under the table again. Smokerings lazily drift toward the cileing, out from under the table.
Raindance is knocked slightly as Arcee stands, the motion setting off his missile early. It streaks towards a corner of the room and blows up a portrait of Brawn. "Eh." Raindance emits. "Its only Brawn"
Peacekeeper rumbles loudly as she shuts down her scanners. Well, that explains that. She folds her arms over her chestplate and studies Rodimus, remaining silent until an explaination is given about what the Pit just happened.
As the Clean Authoritarian Rodimus is dealt with, Ultra Magnus finally comes to a stop just above the pile of ashes that was once the Doppleganger Prime. Squintingly pointedly at the 'remains,' he only offers a passing glance towards the ready-to-pounce Yellowjacket, waving a hand. "No need for that," he affirms. His gaze drifts back to the rust-covered form of Rodimus.
"... I think we all have some questions," Magnus begins, reaching out to rest a hand on the Autobot commander's shoulders. "Though first... you look like you could use a clean up. What happened? And what..." he looks down, towards the doppleganger, "... was -that-?"
Quickswitch's form once again shifts back into its huge robot mode. He stares, open-mouthed at the dirty Prime. His photon blasters are in his hands, pointed downward.... just in case.
Rodimus Prime clearly isn't anticipating his counterpart to disintegrate on contact, so while his fist piledrives right through the graying remains of the Clean Rodimus, he has to stumble and trip to avoid following through right into Arcee's jaw. The Autobot leader tumbles over onto his rear end, thoroughly covering himself in other-Rodimus ashes that just add to his unkempt appearance. He rests his hands on his knees, looking rather vexed and exhausted, his blue optics going from one Autobot to the next. "No... no Mexican fence..." He huffs, exasperatedly, swatting one hand at Raindance half-heartedly. "Yeah, Powerglide?" He asks, running one hand over his helmet. "What is it?"
Powerglide lowers his hand as he gets called on. "What happened?" he asks, as if it wasn't blindingly obvious what his question was going to be about. The minibot remains by the wall, leaning against it slightly for support. It also makes him look pretty badass. He is pleased that the Mexican fence job seems to be off the table now. Sucks to be those losers who were assigned to strip mine Alaska, then!
Rodimus Prime takes Ultra Magnus' hand, pulling himself back up to his feet. "Thanks, Magnus," he mutters, looking from the second-in-command back to Powerglide. "I'm really just figuring it all out myself. I... can't remember when, but I was doing a little driving out near Oakland when some jerk ran me off the road. I woke up in a garbage scow heading to Hong Kong." He sighs, placing his hands on his hips, looking at the pile of dust. "It's not the first time someone's cloned me. This might be... A reject. An earlier effort, maybe." He pokes the ashes with one toe. "Maybe he thought he was the real Rodimus in his own twisted way? The others always did."
Arcee hugs Rodimus' elbow. "Well, we're all just glad you're back, Rodimus." She goes up on tiptoe and kisses him on the cheek, leaving a sooty kiss mark behind.
"That's just too weird..." Whirligig's tone isn't as startled or frightened now. Oh, on the contrary. The femme is sounding... intrigued. "I... sort of would like to study some of those remains..."
Raindance also floats over to Prime, some electrostatic buildup on his nosecone as he bumps up against Prime's other cheek in a 'Raindance-kiss'. "Yeah, good to have you back sir, now we've got rid of that awful Ron Paul"
Yellowjacket returns to the dais with a robot-sized dustpan and broom. Whistling a jaunty tune while he works, he begins to brush the ash and debris into the dustpan. After a few swipes of the broom, he pauses and looks up at the others. "I wonder if this makes me... a /Sweep/." After that, he continues about his janitorial work. Because, as a commando, he has janitor skills as well.
Rodimus Prime offers Arcee an aww-shucks kind of grin. "Yeah, me too, Arcee," he says, just in time to get blindsided by Raindance. He winces as Raindance zap-kisses him, causing him to reflexively swat at the floating jet. "Uh, thanks, Raindance," he mutters, before gesturing to the ashey remains on the ground and looking to Whirligig. "Well, someone's gotta clean this mess up. If you're volunteering for the job, then by all means."
Yellowjacket is so sneaky that it's even difficult to see him when he is cleaning up the remains of Rodimus clones.
Raindance is knocked back by Prime's hand, as he careers towards the wall and explodes in a plume of flame and smoke, against a portrait of Ratchet, which stares down disapprovingly
Arcee sighs indulgently, hands on hips. "Oh, /Raindance./"
Peacekeeper snorts softly. "Or what's left of them, perhaps?" She asks Whirligig with a wry smirk, nodding towards the mess that the ashes have left. She looks at Rodimus and her visor scrolls with data as she scans the Prime, making sure that his disheveled appearance is nothing more than armor damage. (laugh track)
The Central Computer Announces:
ATTENTION! ATTENTION! The base is now unsealed.
Powerglide nods sympathetically as Rodimus relates the story about getting plastered, getting into a DUI car accident, and then waking up on a Hong Kong garbage scow with a killer hangover. This is how Powerglide reads it, anyway. "We've all been there, Rodimus. We know what that's like."
Whirligig looks up with a sort of sheepish smile. "I don't mind... so long as I get the rights to study what's left. I mean, who knows what we could learn from that thing." She glances over... and she does notice the little blur cleaning up the remains. "Hey, don't mess it up too much. I still want to get a look at those ashes. We could find something out from it."
As things begin to calm, Ultra Magnus takes a step back, giving a curious stare as Raindance flies through the air and into the wall explosively. "... Hm. Well, it's good to have -you- you back, Rodimus." The Autobot City Commander gives a scrutinizing stare, leaning closer. "You really should get yourself cleaned up, though. You look like you've been through the Pit and back. Have someone check you out for repairs once everything here has been settled, alright Rodimus?"
Rodimus Prime gives Powerglide a skeptical look, but decides to take the comment the best way he can with a simple nod. He brushes a banana peel from his shoulder, glancing towards the busted blast door. "I don't know about you guys, but I could use a little 'me time' out by the fishing hole after all of this. Are there any pressing issues? Questions?" He looks from one Autobot to another.
Powerglide doesn't have any questions. "No sir, I'm willing to put all this behind us and just pretend that it never happened," he tells the flaming avenger. "You go get those fish, Rodimus. Show them who's boss, am I right?" he asks, trying to get on Rodimus's good side so that when it comes time for him to give out Christmas bonuses at the end of the year, Rodimus will think highly of him.
Meanwhile DepthCharge, now that it sounds like everything is a little more under control, has casually slunk back into the meeting room; standing by the blasted doors and listens. He doesn't have anything to ask, but when everyone has left he fully intends on fighting the other scientists for any left overs to examine.