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@  Pennpenn : (27 April 2017 - 03:23 AM)

Hard G. I don't give a solitary shit what the creators call it, the first word in the acronym is "Graphical". I have no idea why they'd think any sane human could, would, or should pronounce it any other way.

@  SHIELD Agent 47 : (27 April 2017 - 03:13 AM)

I acknowledge what the creators say, but whether I remember to use their pronunciation or not is hit or miss. Heck, I think I usually think of it in my head as "gee-i-ef", in parallel to "JPG" and "PNG".

@  Waspinator : (27 April 2017 - 02:50 AM)

Let's heat things up: what are everyone's opinions on how GIF should be pronounced?

@  Diecast : (26 April 2017 - 11:11 PM)

But I will say that a lot of fandom forums are generally more tolerable nowadays because most belligerent types stick to Facebook groups

@  Diecast : (26 April 2017 - 11:09 PM)

I do like their hard no-politics rule. Now that I do the occasional freelance writing for some local politics and I like zero percent of it my hobby space now. But holy cow, do they replace it with neck beard drama.

@  LordGigaIce : (26 April 2017 - 10:30 PM)

like Noideaforaname I posted on TFW for a while. I came here after I got harassed for daring to suggest that Play With This Too was run by unoriginal hacks, and yeah. This place so much more preferable.

@  Nutjob R/T : (26 April 2017 - 10:15 PM)

And you're turning us on

@  Nutjob R/T : (26 April 2017 - 10:15 PM)

The terrible secret of the Allspark: We all have this twisted fetish for rational thought processes

@  lastmaximal : (26 April 2017 - 10:13 PM)

Not everyone likes everything, and people aren't blind to shortfalls or annoyances resulting from constraints of how the brand is handled. We make many a joke out of these things. But it's a rare thing when entitlement replaces logic on here, where that seems to be poster raison d'etre everywhere else.

@  lastmaximal : (26 April 2017 - 10:11 PM)

It's utterly weird how these here boards seem so impervious an oasis when it comes to that depth of idiocy. Worshipping 3p and demanding the official companies "step it up" and stop being so lazy? Insisting the movies be done THEIR way, crapping on every single thing revealed about the films or toyline, then whining that they can't find (insert hot movie to here) or the official release of a movie figure doesn't capture the look in the film they hated? Etc

@  lastmaximal : (26 April 2017 - 10:09 PM)

It's not even a "brand pissing contest" or "board loyalty" thing, not least due to the fact that those don't really even happen here all that much. I'm just happy to be with levelheaded people who've outgrown the usual fan dumb tropes. You can have a civilized conversation here and people don't shit on things only to hide behind "but but but to each their own right?" when their myopic BS is challenged.

@  lastmaximal : (26 April 2017 - 10:07 PM)

With each time nonsense like this flares up on tfw or on local discussion venues (and it does quite a bit) I'm just reminded of why I've essentially been allspark bound for the last... Fifteen or so years.

@  Noideaforaname : (26 April 2017 - 10:07 PM)

On the plus side, tho, TFW has "appreciation threads" for practically everything, even stuff like Kre-O and PCC. And their toy database is quite handy.

@  Noideaforaname : (26 April 2017 - 10:03 PM)

I've been happily posting on TFW for years. Then, after being *here* for a few months, I look back and wonder how the hell I even bothered with it. I mean, my ignore list had hundreds of people on it. Literally HUNDREDS of ignored people. I even showed off said gargantuan list once (with a small thumbnail that you couldn't read any of the names on, mind you). That... that really should have been a warning sign, I suppose...

@  WorkbenchManiac : (26 April 2017 - 08:03 PM)

Thanks, I enjoyed reading the nerdrage. I should hang out over there more often.

@  Diecast : (26 April 2017 - 07:07 PM)

I mean, Reveal Your Shield. That gets complained about too.

@  Diecast : (26 April 2017 - 07:04 PM)

One of the reveal the shield news threads at TFW has movie fans and G1 fans arguing over who has it worse

@  WorkbenchManiac : (26 April 2017 - 06:49 PM)

You got me awfully curious. What thread ware we talking about?

@  Diecast : (26 April 2017 - 02:17 PM)

That was a quality read. Both sides of that thread's argument went pretty crazy.

@  Noideaforaname : (26 April 2017 - 02:11 PM)

"When Beast Wars made Optimus a monkey nobody complained" ~ someone desperate for a 'gotcha'

@  Diecast : (26 April 2017 - 02:05 PM)

I want to find the rock they've been under that there isn't constantly complaining about something.

@  Diecast : (26 April 2017 - 02:04 PM)

For the lack if a better word, it baffles me when someone starts a discussion somewhere that's like "Does anyone else not like the movies?"

@  TheMightyMol... : (26 April 2017 - 12:13 PM)

Careful, it might have something to say about that.

@  MEDdMI : (26 April 2017 - 12:13 PM)

I'm gonna have to check your opinion out real good to make sure.

@  TheMightyMol... : (26 April 2017 - 11:55 AM)

Oppinions are like assholes. Everyone has one, but mine is better so shut up.

@  ▲ndrusi : (26 April 2017 - 11:08 AM)

To clarify on point 1 since I was typing early in the morning again, "you must hate exactly what I hate" and "you msut like exactly what I like" aren't actually the same statement but they're the same thought process which is "my opinions are objective facts." If you see someone espousing one, they're probably thinking the other, too.

@  lastmaximal : (26 April 2017 - 10:57 AM)

... what.

@  Bass X0 : (26 April 2017 - 10:15 AM)

Andrusi, I imagine to some people online, there isn't that much of a world of difference, at least going by the venom they post; although not at RiD specifically.

@  unluckiness : (26 April 2017 - 08:55 AM)

The scale of liking and hating is an interval one so you can not like something but not hate it. Pretty sure there's apathy and dislike in between there at least.

@  wonko the sane? : (26 April 2017 - 08:07 AM)

And humans are perfectly capable of hating things in unison while being divided on liking.

@  ▲ndrusi : (26 April 2017 - 07:34 AM)

On the other hand, there's a world of difference between "I hate RID" and "I hate Nazis."

@  ▲ndrusi : (26 April 2017 - 07:27 AM)

On one hand, "hating what I hate" IS "liking what I like." One of those cultures can't be worse than the other because they're literally the same culture.

@  ▲ndrusi : (26 April 2017 - 07:26 AM)

I think that comparison is both an oversimplification AND a meaningless distinction.

@  wonko the sane? : (26 April 2017 - 07:16 AM)

That's the internet effect. Distance and anonimity make for easy and consequence-less extremism.

@  Bass X0 : (26 April 2017 - 06:58 AM)

I think the aggressive "How dare you not hate exactly what I hate" culture online is worse than the aggressive "How dare you not like exactly what I like" culture.

@  MEDdMI : (26 April 2017 - 06:19 AM)

And now that song/scene and its many many parodies are running through my head.

@  unluckiness : (26 April 2017 - 06:18 AM)

Patrick Swayze didnt!

@  MEDdMI : (26 April 2017 - 05:58 AM)

lol. As long as they knock first.

@  LBD "Nyt... : (26 April 2017 - 05:57 AM)

Or as ghosts. I guess ghosts would be acceptable.

@  LBD "Nyt... : (26 April 2017 - 05:57 AM)

For now, I'd just find some small comfort in knowing those who have passed actually are in some sort of better place.

@  LBD "Nyt... : (26 April 2017 - 05:56 AM)

I'd find comfort in knowing that one way or another, that suffering would eventually end and a new, potentially happier beginning awaits.

@  MEDdMI : (26 April 2017 - 05:54 AM)

@LBD At the same time, I can't imagine wanting to stay in even a happy afterlife when fleshies are still suffering.

@  2017 : (26 April 2017 - 05:49 AM)

Celebrating and welcoming death just gives them more ideological hoops to justify killing others. So yeah, no thanks.

@  LBD "Nyt... : (26 April 2017 - 05:48 AM)

The idea of death doesn't bother me so much as no longer existing.

@  MEDdMI : (26 April 2017 - 05:48 AM)

at the very least, my body will feed the grass which feeds the antelope which feeds the lio- ....wait

@  LBD "Nyt... : (26 April 2017 - 05:47 AM)

Yeah, that's kind of the thing.

@  MEDdMI : (26 April 2017 - 05:47 AM)

Some cultures celebrate/welcome death (of course, those also have some form of afterlife)

@  wonko the sane? : (26 April 2017 - 05:45 AM)

You shouldn't be. What with having absolutely no knowledge or control over it.

@  2017 : (26 April 2017 - 05:45 AM)

Death is scary, which is why we either spend our lives avoiding the subject or staying up late overthinking it.

@  LBD "Nyt... : (26 April 2017 - 05:44 AM)

"Never did want to live forever." I'm more bothered about what -- if anything -- is next.


Beast Wars Dark Energon Saga


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#1 (Deactivated) Black Prime

(Deactivated) Black Prime
  • Guests

Posted 23 December 2011 - 04:53 PM

BEAST WARS
By Elliot Jones

Prologue: Mortal Combat

He sees me. I know wherever I flee, he sees me. I have to be quick.

?NGGGH!? One slice of his energy-rapier is enough to kill me. All I have is pulse lasers, a sting-crossbow, a bludgeoning hammer, and a couldn?t-care-less outlook on life. But he sees me. My fuzor-body pumps with excitement.

?Where are you, Maximal?! No one can escape the wrath of Gigatron!?

Those were the days. The days before Gigatron and his army of demons. The days before the Vehicons invaded the Maximal colony on Gaea. The days when I could live peacefully. I can but reflect on them for a split second before??ARRGH!? I?m whapped to and fro by Gigatron?s blind hit. It?s only a matter of time before he spots me in this night, the blackest of nights. The shadows can only help me for so long?

?You cannot escape the blades of Gigatron, Maximal,? said Gigatron, sounding like a broken record. He transformed into his twin-headed dragon mode, and began to scorch the countryside with his breath. I transform into shark-hawk mode, and dive deep into the smarmy water, to escape the scorching breath for only so long. It?s so hot--! It will evaporate the water before long. The roars of the dragon can be heard beneath the muddled waves. I wait for my opportunity.

?Take this, Predacon scum!? I fly at him, mouth stretched open, my head ramming into his bulky body.

It doesn?t even dent him. I quickly fly away, my warrior impulse guiding me to alight somewhere else, wait for another moment to attack. He laughs with pity at my attempt to attack him. ?This world is doomed,? he said. ?You will bathe in the flames of war and conquest. Die, Maximal!? He transforms, quickly, to robot mode, and shoots his energy-rapier like an arrow out of his hilt. I grab it, quickly transforming to robot mode. I figure if my weapons have no effect, at least his will.

I wait for my time to strike. He grows another rapier out of his hilt, and twirls the twin-blade around. Then, he fires a deadening blast out of the hand-guard. It explodes only a small distance away from my perch. I know it is time to advance. I throw the still-glowing rapier at Gigatron, and it snips through his paunch, a glancing blow. ?You will pay for this, you fool!?

I know what to do with a smallish wound on my opponent: to make it more of a dreadful one. I fire as many barbs as I can at the cut superstructure, and Gigatron makes to fly around me, to meet me on his terms. He fires more blasts from his gun, and blows up the scenery all about us. It is only a matter of time before I die.

He slams his energy rapier down on my crumbling body, and I catch it with my fin. We are locked in mortal combat now, and I must make it count. I fire my pulse blasts from my eyes at his chest, ripping it further open. He drops his energy rapier. I swoop down and pick it up.

I find my way to a high peak. He flies up in bat mode, and fires off supersonic waves, screeching through my audio receptors like the scratching of nails. I hide away in a cave not far from where we were.

I hear his tumbling footfalls. ?You will pay,? he says, ?you will pay for the damage you?ve done. You will pay.? I must buy time. I fire at the rocky ceiling, and rocks tumble down to obscure his path. Immediately he melts the rocks away, and flies at me to jab his rapier into my side. He pins me to the wall.

The wall begins to glow an eerie glow, unlike anything I?ve ever seen. ?What?what is that?? the Predacon banters.

?That,? I say, ?is your sealed fate.? I wring myself free of his bladed grip, and blast away at the wall, trapping him in a dance of fiery blasts. I do not escape fully from the firestorm. I fall unconscious. The Predacon, I wager, is gone.



#2 (Deactivated) Black Prime

(Deactivated) Black Prime
  • Guests

Posted 25 December 2011 - 08:59 AM

Chapter 1: Lost Bird

Where am I? Alive? Dead??Everything I see is a noxious white. I am in some kind of containment chamber. Outside?fighting. War. Something unpleasant is going on.

__

?Silverbolt!? it was Polar claw. He always was one of a stern composure. ?Now is not the time to be daydreaming. Do you remember the plan??

?Yes,? I replied. ?The drop ship flies over the Predacon camp, and I fly into the boiler room. I place the bomb in there, and rush to the prison, releasing the Maximal hostages. Was there anything else??

?Get out of there immediately! We?ll be waiting for you on the ridge.? I nodded. It had been three months since I had joined the Rangers, a special group of Maximals for the sole purpose of surveying the land and keeping the peace, fending off rogue Predacons. Before that?I could not remember. My mind was hazy. But something about that containment chamber fascinated me. I wanted to know where I came from.

__

And so we flew the drop ship over the Predacon camp, and I disguised myself as an eagle to avoid Predacon detection. I had an unusual ability in that respect: most of the time Maximal signatures could be picked up, even in beast mode. But I was an exception. I never knew why, but Polar Claw considered it much an advantage.

I heard blasting outside. K-9 and Wolfang were there, distracting Predacon soldiers from their post so I would have more of an opportunity to free the Maximals. But this mission would not be successful. I arrived at the boiler room. Quiet. Transforming into robot mode, I placed the bomb stealthily on a fuming gas tank. Then I sped out, flying from there into the Maximal prison. I heard their wails hugging my audio receptors with desperation. ?I?m here to save you!? I said.

?Not on my watch!? cried a voice from behind. A Pred. It was Insecticon; a Predacon whose spark was created from sparks of ancient Decepticons. I drew my sabers. ?Your little plan was not a success,? he said, brandishing his crossbow. ?I have deactivated the bomb, you see. I was creeping around the boiler room in stag form, form. A little hiding of my own body mass with the help of the Deto Device sure does go a long way, way!? He fired a concentrated charge my way. I dodged.

I ducked behind a box. Then I threw a sword at him. Deto Device? What was he talking about? But he was behind me. He cut me at the back; no time to dodge. I flew out of there. Was he bluffing? I cut open a whole in the ceiling and flew out of the base, into the drop ship hovering above. ?Silverbolt! Get in, quick!? said Polar Claw. But he was too late. A powerful charge tore the drop ship to scrap, and it plunged into the cliffs below. I cried out in stiff respite. I was sorry, but I could not help K-9 and Wolfang. I transformed into eagle mode and sped away, charges erupting from the base below. I had nowhere to go back except the ranges? base.

__

?Deto Device?? it was Cohrada, Polar Claw?s second-in-command. Longrack stood plaintively behind him. They were much uneasy. ?That?s horrible! Those ssssslimes can?t possibly have??

?But what is it?? I said, vexed.

?It?ssss? a device that allowssss one to travel into subspace, thereby having access to any weapon or massss stored there. Sssome say it even can store data in Cerebro circuits. If the Predacons have thisss device??

?Then we?re doomed,? said Longrack simply. ?We must get it before they use it to capture this planet.?

K-9 and Wolfang entered through the makeshift doors, looking quite beaten up. ?They have Polar Claw,? K-9 said. ?There was nothing we would have done.?

?I?m sorry?? I said, bowing deeply. ?It was my fault. I should?ve??
?No worriesss, Silverbolt,? said Cohrada with a sigh that said quite the opposite. ?You are new to the job. But we have little time to rest. We must call Hardhead back from his patrolsss and commence a ssstrike on that Predacon base.?

?What?s the matter?? Wolfang said.

?They have a Deto device,? Longrack said, holding nothing back. A morbid silence ensued. But it was almost a humorous one: one that said, ?it?s stupid that we?re even still alive.? But I was indignant.

?How did they know we would attack the boiler room?? I said. ?Something is seriously wrong here. They must have gotten a tip from someone.?

An even more humorously morbid silence ensued. ?Well if you?re so sure of that,? Wolfang said, ?how do we know you?re not the spy?? He flounced up to me, and stuck his weapon into my chin.

?Easy,? Cohrada said. ?Easy. I trust Silverbolt. Polar Claw did as well. We must patch communications with Headstrong.?

He walked up to the computer interface, a morose expression on his face. I knew it was on account of me. He patched communications with Headstrong. ?Headstrong,? he said with a sigh, ?how are the sector seven ruins? Any sign of the Predacons there??

?No, sir,? he said with a grunt. ?Nothing. Looks like they flew the coop. Who knows why they were here in the first place.? I picked up a subtle facetiousness in his voice. I didn?t know why; I didn?t bring it up.

?Right,? Cohrada said. ?We need you back at the base. We have to bring the Predacons down. They have a Deto Device.?

?Oh really?? Headstrong said. ?That?s troubling. I?m on my way!?

The communications ended. ?Get ready, Maximals,? Cohrada said, loading his particle gun. ?There isss no excuse for being lax.?

__

Hours passed as we prepared weapons for the strike. Headstrong never showed. After a while, I got restless and headed outside. The starry sky lit up brightly. I had heard my Maximal compatriots speak of Cybertron, light years upon light years away from this dusty planet. I had this funny feeling, like something was creeping up on me. Like something was right behind me. Then I heard a transforming noise. Insecticon! How did the Predacons know we were?

?Die, Maximal!? cried Insecticon. He shot me in the back of the head. I whirled around, made to slice at his squishy body. Then he quickly transformed into stag beetle mode, and bustled off. Two more Predacons sauntered forth, and began to fire their weapons at me and the base. I escaped back into the face of the rock, and into the base.

?Cohrada! Longrack! The Predacons are upon us!?

?Traitor,? said Cohrada. ?You are the turncoat.? He held me in place with his snake arm. I saw Headstrong?s face on them monitor.

?What?? said Silverbolt. ?But you said you trusted me??

?Choose your words carefully, Maximal. You may want to perpetuate the fa?ade to make good your escape.?

?I?m not a traitor!? I said.

?Tell that to the Predacons outside,? said Headstrong. ?I overheard a conversation that proves the whole affair. The Predacons outside walloped the rock entrance with blasts, and in they came.

?Thank you for revealing the Maximal base, comrade,? said Snapper, blasting my actual comrades. I was flummoxed. ?You have served us well. It is too bad we have no sympathy for one such as you.? He shot me, and I flew into the distance. In the din I could not make out what happened.

__

I had not known for how long I had lie in dumb stupor, covered in the husky ruins of the rangers? hideout. Wounded, I spat my arm out of the pile of rocks scattered by the Pred?s weapons, and crawled out ever so slowly. The day was waning, the sun slowly descending into the plaintive horizon. I wished I could have helped the Maximals more. Why had they named me the traitor? What was their intention?

But I didn?t care. I had to get to a CR chamber. Badly. So I limped across the country?I couldn?t even transform or fly. In the deep of the night, I saw something that irked me?frightened me to the core. It was a sign, in the middle of the wilderness, that said: ?WANTED: Traitorous Maximal. Energon reward for whomever finds him and brings him into custody.? It bore my picture, and Cohrada?s personal insignia. I knew I was doomed then. I began to make my bedraggled journey through the countryside.

?Catch him!? Slag. It didn?t matter who they were. I was slagged. Shadowy figures moved towards me, ready to grab me and hurt me. They brandished their shaded weapons as they bounded up to me, ready to fire. An Energon reward. Had the Maximals stooped to the level of the Predacons? We were supposed to be allies in this. We were supposed to be friends, united in trust to battle the Predacons in camaraderie unmatched. But no. We had become so secluded from each other that our own personal interests took precedence over the common good of all Maximals. But right as I closed my optics, I heard a quick slice through my assaulters? chests. They fell to the ground in a slump. I looked up, and on a butte stood a formidable bot. He was no ordinary Maximal: he had an impressive build and an intense look on his face. He wielded a blade of some sort?its impressive design unlike anything I had ever seen.

?Hello friend,? he said, with a grin. ?My name is Odin. You are coming with me to Cyber City. There I expect to receive my reward.?

Oh slag. I had no desire to fight the one I had assumed to be a friend.


#3 electricidad

electricidad
  • Citizen
  • 389 posts

Posted 31 January 2012 - 04:06 PM

Very nice. I miss the Beast era. You've captured it well.


QUOTE(Black Prime @ Dec 25 2011, 07:59 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Chapter 1: Lost Bird

Where am I? Alive? Dead??Everything I see is a noxious white. I am in some kind of containment chamber. Outside?fighting. War. Something unpleasant is going on.

__

?Silverbolt!? it was Polar claw. He always was one of a stern composure. ?Now is not the time to be daydreaming. Do you remember the plan??

?Yes,? I replied. ?The drop ship flies over the Predacon camp, and I fly into the boiler room. I place the bomb in there, and rush to the prison, releasing the Maximal hostages. Was there anything else??

?Get out of there immediately! We?ll be waiting for you on the ridge.? I nodded. It had been three months since I had joined the Rangers, a special group of Maximals for the sole purpose of surveying the land and keeping the peace, fending off rogue Predacons. Before that?I could not remember. My mind was hazy. But something about that containment chamber fascinated me. I wanted to know where I came from.

__

And so we flew the drop ship over the Predacon camp, and I disguised myself as an eagle to avoid Predacon detection. I had an unusual ability in that respect: most of the time Maximal signatures could be picked up, even in beast mode. But I was an exception. I never knew why, but Polar Claw considered it much an advantage.

I heard blasting outside. K-9 and Wolfang were there, distracting Predacon soldiers from their post so I would have more of an opportunity to free the Maximals. But this mission would not be successful. I arrived at the boiler room. Quiet. Transforming into robot mode, I placed the bomb stealthily on a fuming gas tank. Then I sped out, flying from there into the Maximal prison. I heard their wails hugging my audio receptors with desperation. ?I?m here to save you!? I said.

?Not on my watch!? cried a voice from behind. A Pred. It was Insecticon; a Predacon whose spark was created from sparks of ancient Decepticons. I drew my sabers. ?Your little plan was not a success,? he said, brandishing his crossbow. ?I have deactivated the bomb, you see. I was creeping around the boiler room in stag form, form. A little hiding of my own body mass with the help of the Deto Device sure does go a long way, way!? He fired a concentrated charge my way. I dodged.

I ducked behind a box. Then I threw a sword at him. Deto Device? What was he talking about? But he was behind me. He cut me at the back; no time to dodge. I flew out of there. Was he bluffing? I cut open a whole in the ceiling and flew out of the base, into the drop ship hovering above. ?Silverbolt! Get in, quick!? said Polar Claw. But he was too late. A powerful charge tore the drop ship to scrap, and it plunged into the cliffs below. I cried out in stiff respite. I was sorry, but I could not help K-9 and Wolfang. I transformed into eagle mode and sped away, charges erupting from the base below. I had nowhere to go back except the ranges? base.

__

?Deto Device?? it was Cohrada, Polar Claw?s second-in-command. Longrack stood plaintively behind him. They were much uneasy. ?That?s horrible! Those ssssslimes can?t possibly have??

?But what is it?? I said, vexed.

?It?ssss? a device that allowssss one to travel into subspace, thereby having access to any weapon or massss stored there. Sssome say it even can store data in Cerebro circuits. If the Predacons have thisss device??

?Then we?re doomed,? said Longrack simply. ?We must get it before they use it to capture this planet.?

K-9 and Wolfang entered through the makeshift doors, looking quite beaten up. ?They have Polar Claw,? K-9 said. ?There was nothing we would have done.?

?I?m sorry?? I said, bowing deeply. ?It was my fault. I should?ve??
?No worriesss, Silverbolt,? said Cohrada with a sigh that said quite the opposite. ?You are new to the job. But we have little time to rest. We must call Hardhead back from his patrolsss and commence a ssstrike on that Predacon base.?

?What?s the matter?? Wolfang said.

?They have a Deto device,? Longrack said, holding nothing back. A morbid silence ensued. But it was almost a humorous one: one that said, ?it?s stupid that we?re even still alive.? But I was indignant.

?How did they know we would attack the boiler room?? I said. ?Something is seriously wrong here. They must have gotten a tip from someone.?

An even more humorously morbid silence ensued. ?Well if you?re so sure of that,? Wolfang said, ?how do we know you?re not the spy?? He flounced up to me, and stuck his weapon into my chin.

?Easy,? Cohrada said. ?Easy. I trust Silverbolt. Polar Claw did as well. We must patch communications with Headstrong.?

He walked up to the computer interface, a morose expression on his face. I knew it was on account of me. He patched communications with Headstrong. ?Headstrong,? he said with a sigh, ?how are the sector seven ruins? Any sign of the Predacons there??

?No, sir,? he said with a grunt. ?Nothing. Looks like they flew the coop. Who knows why they were here in the first place.? I picked up a subtle facetiousness in his voice. I didn?t know why; I didn?t bring it up.

?Right,? Cohrada said. ?We need you back at the base. We have to bring the Predacons down. They have a Deto Device.?

?Oh really?? Headstrong said. ?That?s troubling. I?m on my way!?

The communications ended. ?Get ready, Maximals,? Cohrada said, loading his particle gun. ?There isss no excuse for being lax.?

__

Hours passed as we prepared weapons for the strike. Headstrong never showed. After a while, I got restless and headed outside. The starry sky lit up brightly. I had heard my Maximal compatriots speak of Cybertron, light years upon light years away from this dusty planet. I had this funny feeling, like something was creeping up on me. Like something was right behind me. Then I heard a transforming noise. Insecticon! How did the Predacons know we were?

?Die, Maximal!? cried Insecticon. He shot me in the back of the head. I whirled around, made to slice at his squishy body. Then he quickly transformed into stag beetle mode, and bustled off. Two more Predacons sauntered forth, and began to fire their weapons at me and the base. I escaped back into the face of the rock, and into the base.

?Cohrada! Longrack! The Predacons are upon us!?

?Traitor,? said Cohrada. ?You are the turncoat.? He held me in place with his snake arm. I saw Headstrong?s face on them monitor.

?What?? said Silverbolt. ?But you said you trusted me??

?Choose your words carefully, Maximal. You may want to perpetuate the fa?ade to make good your escape.?

?I?m not a traitor!? I said.

?Tell that to the Predacons outside,? said Headstrong. ?I overheard a conversation that proves the whole affair. The Predacons outside walloped the rock entrance with blasts, and in they came.

?Thank you for revealing the Maximal base, comrade,? said Snapper, blasting my actual comrades. I was flummoxed. ?You have served us well. It is too bad we have no sympathy for one such as you.? He shot me, and I flew into the distance. In the din I could not make out what happened.

__

I had not known for how long I had lie in dumb stupor, covered in the husky ruins of the rangers? hideout. Wounded, I spat my arm out of the pile of rocks scattered by the Pred?s weapons, and crawled out ever so slowly. The day was waning, the sun slowly descending into the plaintive horizon. I wished I could have helped the Maximals more. Why had they named me the traitor? What was their intention?

But I didn?t care. I had to get to a CR chamber. Badly. So I limped across the country?I couldn?t even transform or fly. In the deep of the night, I saw something that irked me?frightened me to the core. It was a sign, in the middle of the wilderness, that said: ?WANTED: Traitorous Maximal. Energon reward for whomever finds him and brings him into custody.? It bore my picture, and Cohrada?s personal insignia. I knew I was doomed then. I began to make my bedraggled journey through the countryside.

?Catch him!? Slag. It didn?t matter who they were. I was slagged. Shadowy figures moved towards me, ready to grab me and hurt me. They brandished their shaded weapons as they bounded up to me, ready to fire. An Energon reward. Had the Maximals stooped to the level of the Predacons? We were supposed to be allies in this. We were supposed to be friends, united in trust to battle the Predacons in camaraderie unmatched. But no. We had become so secluded from each other that our own personal interests took precedence over the common good of all Maximals. But right as I closed my optics, I heard a quick slice through my assaulters? chests. They fell to the ground in a slump. I looked up, and on a butte stood a formidable bot. He was no ordinary Maximal: he had an impressive build and an intense look on his face. He wielded a blade of some sort?its impressive design unlike anything I had ever seen.

?Hello friend,? he said, with a grin. ?My name is Odin. You are coming with me to Cyber City. There I expect to receive my reward.?

Oh slag. I had no desire to fight the one I had assumed to be a friend.