Author: This is one of my odder ideas...ah, well. We'll see how it goes.
Disclaimer: Transformers mine is not.
It was one of my more dangerous assignments. Well, perhaps not dangerous, but certainly more difficult.
I stood in the shadow of a security officer, he completely unaware of my presence. Then again, without breathing to alert him to another's presence, I hoped he'd remain ignorant for the duration of the meeting. As I recorded the proceedings with every sense available to me, I was given time to think.
I'm not particularly liked among my comrades. No, they're not really comrades. Those-I-work-with? A long descriptor, but an apt one. There are a number of reasons to my unpopularity, but the main one is my function:
I am a spy. Intel. Skulking around in shadowed places, picking up information that will be useful later on, while doing so without guns blazing or direct confrontation. I am seen as cowardly, weak, and frequently compared to some of the less favorable qualities of our SIC. I've never really cared, though, as long as I'm supported by the only one whose opinion really matters. They can talk all they want behind my back, but never around him—he'd have them down so fast it wouldn't be funny.
Well, it would be funny, but that's unimportant.
The proceedings felt deliberately slow and only the knowledge of the reprimand I would receive if I didn't pay close attention and stick it out through the entire boring thing kept me there. My boredom was vindicated by the security guard stifling a yawn. He obviously found it as tedious as I did.
Eventually, the meeting wrapped up with an unfortunate decision to continue talks the next day. That meant I had to stay here longer, which was a pain. I made myself inconspicuous, making sure my cloaking device was working. I slipped out behind the last dignitary's body guard, my steps easily erased by the heavy trod of the others. I allowed myself to take a long, quiet breath—I was able to hold my breath for much longer than most, but I still needed to breathe, for the most part.
Now, to escape, which would be much harder than I would have liked.
With the introduction of Cybertronians to Earth, people had become paranoid, and so had developed ways of detecting if a metal was, well, for lack of a better term, alive. Cybertronian metal and Terran metal had slight differences, and one company or another had created a device that could detect such differences.
As my body wasn't entirely Cybertronain, I had it a little easier. It was...not uncommon for people to keep shards of Cybertronian metal they found on them, either for "good luck" or morbid curiosity was up to debate. However, I had just a little too much for it to be discounted as a trinket.
I discovered, at that point, that they had also managed to create EM pulses that short out Cybertronian circuitry, just as a double check for, you know, safety. My cloak dissipated and I had just enough time to start running before guns started firing. Sometimes, my bad luck from my earlier days still stuck to me, which made my life...interesting. The security still wouldn't be able to tell who or what I was, considering I was still on my feet and was clothed entirely in black, face and all. My eyes were visored as their glow occasionally gave me away.
Bullets pinged uncomfortably close to my heels. I risked a look back before swearing softly.
I am abnormally fast, but I still can't beat cars. Thankfully, I am abnormally strong and have a few tricks up my sleeves.
I whirled to face them and slammed my fists as hard as possible on the ground. The ground reacted in much the same way as it would to be a running Cybertronian's footfall—it splintered and the tremor made it difficult to drive. It gave me a few seconds to find a place to hide, I shutting down all of my unnecessary functions—which meant I killed the majority of what was powered by my spark. An organic-being wouldn't register on their metallic-being sensors.
I moved quietly, carefully, keeping my head down and keeping careful track of where all the others were. I ran up against a blockade and swore inwardly. Humans could be quite coordinated when they tried. Knowing that it would take more time and ingenuity to escape the 'secure location' than I might have, I sent all the information I had gathered along a secure line that only I knew of, making sure not to miss the smallest bit. The information dump also wiped what memories I had of the proceedings, which was good in case they actually did catch me. I truly was ignorant of what had occurred.
I had finally found an escape route when I was discovered. My armor—both what I was wearing and what was natural to me—was strong, but not strong enough to shake off what I was facing. So I stood and raised my hands, surrendering until a more opportune time.
I made no move when they approached me, let them search me for any kind of weaponry (I don't carry any because it weighs me down, and if I get caught...well, it's easier to wait for an escape than try to muscle my way out—and I always find a way to escape). I went with them placidly, walking as quickly as they did to a holding cell. It was maximum security, considering what everything was made of—things that were resistant to even Cybertronian weaponry and strength. They watched my every move, when I made one, and were obviously surprised when I let them strip-search me. I had nothing to hide, and with my Cybertronian functions suppressed, I appeared to be nothing more than just a human. I had forgotten which face I was wearing, but it was apparently bland and common enough that it could have belonged to any member of the general American populace.
My skin was soft and warm, and nothing about me spoke of me being anything other than a sneaky human. They put me in new clothes, clothes I could conceal nothing in, and then left me in my cell, a video camera watching me intently, sleeplessly.
I sighed heavily and sat down on the floor, examining my hands. Technically, my mission had been a success. He would be pleased with me, as would our leader. I couldn't remember a shred of what had happened in that chamber, but had a feeling that it was, well, important. Still, it was best that I knew nothing of what had occurred.
I sat in that cell for 3 hours, 27 minutes, and 17 seconds when the door opened. Two human soldiers entered and I stood, holding out my wrists for them. They were surprised at my willingness, but placed the heavy handcuffs on me nonetheless. I was confined between them and was brought to what I recognized from television military/police dramas as an inquisition room. I sat in the chair and placed my bound hands on the table, my fingers lacing together neatly.
An officer of some sort sat before me as two stood guard at the door.
"What is your name?" he asked quietly, in a gruff voice that brooked no argument.
I had heard worse. I remained silent.
He continued to barrage me with questions: Who are you working for? Where did you come from? Why were you here? How much did you see/hear? Etc, etc. I remained silent throughout, mutely observing the man, the room, the guards, and those standing behind the two-way mirror.
Another person came and questioned me, the same questions, just different phrasing. He tried to bargain with me, but what can he give me that I don't already have?
Eventually, I was led back to my cell, and sat there, resting my forearms on my knees, my head on my forearms. I had a plan. It would get me out of here without any violence. In studying the video mechanism in my cell as well as in the interrogation room, I had figured out a way to manipulate the data stream. It would require onlining a few of my Cybertronian systems, but I couldn't see how that would be a problem. My cloaking device was internal, and as long as I stayed away from sources of high electromagnetic fields, I could use it without worry.
I sat up straighter and leaned against the wall, my hands placed on the floor behind my back. The palms of my hands returned to their normal metallic state, and manipulating a little radiation, I tapped into the wiring beneath me. I closed my eyes so I could concentrate better. My consciousness rode along the current until I found the branch point where it went to the camera. I manipulated the device so it showed the same image constantly, but allowed the time-stamp to change. I allowed my mind to snap back to its normal housing and stood quietly. I placed my hands on the wall where the panel was and exerted the tiniest bit of energy to get the door to open just enough for me to barely squeeze through. I activated my cloaking device before exiting, and scrapped myself a little, but it wasn't anything that wouldn't become part of the metal surrounding it or be healed when I allowed my skin to return to its usual state.
I padded silently down the hallways, my breath inaudible in the silence. I finally found my way to a door that was purely physically locked. With a small amount of effort, I got in. As I had remembered, it was a supply closet. I took a few deep breaths before allowing my Cybertronian systems to come back online. I changed my face and body and, with slightly more effort, changed the clothes to something more suitable. Thankfully, very little aside from the color had to be changed. When I exited the storage closet, I looked every bit like a janitor. I had even mimicked the fingerprints that I had found on the broom handle.
What people see every day, they overlook, and I was out of the 'secure location' by 15 minutes before they discovered that I was gone.
I had been told to stay throughout however long the summit took, so I was unable to return to my home yet. Because of that, I needed to find a different way of accessing the information. I tapped my fingers against my thigh as I sat in the apartment I had for myself whenever I came to this part of the Earth. I wouldn't be able to enter the way I had before, so I needed something else. There were no video cameras in the conference room where talks were being held, so I couldn't hack those. No computers near there either. Then, what...?
My eyebrows rose as an idea dawned on me. All of the bodyguard personnel had radio transmitters/receivers of some sort on them—it was the way they communicated with their colleagues. It wouldn't be too difficult to find those frequencies, whether or not they were on a secure line. There were no secure lines—not for those like me. Not with the skills I possessed.
I took a deep breath and settled myself comfortably on my couch. This would take every ounce of concentration I had, and one slip could alert whomever I ended up with knowing that something was up.
It took an hour and a half for me to finally zone in on the signal I was looking for, but it didn't take much to sustain the contact.
I had, thankfully, ended up with an English-speaking bodyguard, so I didn't have to worry about translating. It was a little warbled, but I could still get all of the auditory information possible. It wasn't as much as I would have liked, but there was little I could do.
This meeting, thankfully, was conclusive, and I withdrew my concentration once it had finished. I was shaking slightly and drenched in sweat, but that was a side effect of my weakness and my strength. I sent all the new information I had gathered away to where it would be safer and sighed, sustaining the connection.
May I return yet? I asked, keeping the whine out of my voice. He would say 'no' if I appeared ungrateful.
You have another mission.
So soon? I thought despairingly.
You will meet up with Tailwind.
My eyebrows rose slowly. A new Seeker had arrived? I had met all of Starscream's lackeys, but this one was new to me. Where? I asked instead.
A set of coordinates came to me and I confirmed them before standing and stretching, my body having gotten stiff in my concentration. I rolled my shoulders and picked up some clothes and a towel—I would take a shower, get some nourishment, and then move on. There was no use hanging around in a place where I could get caught, and I, apparently, had a new mission to fulfill.
I slung my clothes and towel over the towel rack before stepping into the shower, turning it on as hot as it could get.
My life was weird. Really, really, ridiculously weird. I looked at my hands, smiling faintly. Right then, I was in my more-or-less organic form, since that was the one that got the dirtiest.
Saying that, I suppose an explanation is in order.
My name is Samuel James Witwicky, but I go by Screen most of the time now. Afterall, Sam was a human hero—I, however, am very much not. Sam was also human. I, again, am not.
Well, that's not entirely true. I am partly human. Most of my body is still organic—I have organs and everything, blood still circulates through my veins, and so on. However, I also carry a Spark. As such, I also have some Cybertronian qualities. In order to protect itself, the Spark has turned my bones and chitin to some kind of lightweight Cybertronian metal alloy. It has also created a fine layer of a different, more supple alloy that rests neatly on top of my skin. It's strange enough that I can manipulate the molecules to allow either the metal or organic material to be the outer covering of my body. The metal, admittedly, is flesh-colored, so it doesn't look that different...
'Why are you called Screen, then?' you may wonder. 'Why are you familiar with the 'cons?'
That's...a little more complicated.
I am currently working as a Decepticon intelligence agent, keeping us just one step ahead of the 'bots. They still haven't figured out how we're doing it—it wouldn't occur to them that a human could be helping the 'cons. I'm not sure why I'm called Screen, though—you'd have to take that up with Soundwave.
You see, I belong to Soundwave.
Apparently, not long after the battle of Giza, he caught me and Bumblebee unaware, in order to get revenge for the deaths of Ravage and Frenzy. It was then, when he was about to kill me, that he discovered two very interesting things:
1) I possess a Spark.
2) I'm a Prime.
What better revenge than to have a Prime beholden to him? What better recompense that he claim my just barely formed spark as his own, to make me one of his creations, like Frenzy and Ravage? At that point—somehow—he managed to lay claim to my spark. He wrote himself into the very core of my being, and since the spark was only just forming, it would be hidden and assumed to be an natural quirk in its radiation. Then, when my spark had developed fully and the time was right...he'd come and claim me. Claim his very own pet Prime.
'Why don't you fight against it?' you may ask. 'Surely if you told the Autobots they'd find a way to undo it.'
See, here's the problem—he literally has claim to my soul. I can't un-write Soundwave's mark, as that would necessarily involve killing myself, which I have no desire to do. Anyway, it...feels good to be in his presence. It's like...he's father, brother, and lover all at once, which sounds really weird and really wrong, but...there's no good way to explain it.
I am loyal to Soundwave, and as Soundwave is loyal to Megatron, so am I. Should Megatron be truly and finally offlined, I'm pretty sure Soundwave'll break from the Decepticons if only because he can't stand Starscream.
What'll I do then? Hells if I know, but, for now, I'm a Decepticon recon agent.
I started this story because I'm tired of carrying around all my memories. I don't want to remember the feel of Mikaela's lips, the warmth of my mom's arms squeezing the air out of me, the strange bond Bee and I shared. It's easier that way. But, as I don't want all record of my former life wiped, I figured that the internet would be as good a place as any to put my story. That way, once it's all written, I can...forget. But, if I ever do have a bout of nostalgia, I can go back and read it.
Who knows, maybe I'll get some good reviews on my story, since I am posting this under fanfiction. We'll see.
I started in the middle, because the middle brings me to the beginning, which will take me to the end.
Now, where was I...?
The hot shower felt good on my tired muscles—running is hard work, and its even harder work to move quietly. I carefully washed my hair and body before turning off the water, resting my forehead gently against the tile.
What do I know about Tailwind? I wondered before straightening, moving the curtain that concealed my shower and stepping onto the tile, water running in rivulets down the planes of my body. I took the towel off the rack and briskly dried myself.
As I changed into new clothes, I finally came to the conclusion that I knew next to nothing about Tailwind. His name indicated that he was a Seeker, but I knew nothing about his personality or history or strengths or weaknesses or...you get the drift. He was a dangerous unknown, but I guessed that Soundwave probably told the Seeker equally little about me, if anything at all. Soundwave wouldn't send me into battle, though, so whatever the mission was, it was probably some sort of reconnaissance or intel.
I couldn't imagine one of Starscream's doing intel work, but not all Seekers were Starscream's.
Still, it was unwise to keep any 'con waiting unless you could match them in strength, which I sure as hell couldn't.
I packed a small bag, put my wallet in my back pocket, closed and locked my door behind me, and then headed out into the world, into another mission.