Set in the same Meta777-continuity as a Tuesday for Onslaught. This one-shot features the delightful friendship of Bumblebee and Grimlock Granted, leaving the haven of the Autobot base, the Zeta-1, was a generally risky manoeuvre, considering the present threat of the Decepticons, but to honest, Grimlock couldn't care. Pit, he'd welcome such an attack, just to stave off the frustration and boredom. Three days since Starscream's last incursion, and already he felt like his mind was going to collapse from inaction. Grimlock hated being cooped up in the ship, and the lack of enemies to attack, as well as the constant wariness of the other Autobots, was beginning to crack at his restraint. Well, whatever meagre thing he could call restraint, at least. He didn't even bother to remain in vehicle mode, not that humans came out this far into the forest region surrounding the mountain they were based at the foot of. He simply wanted to walk. Walking was all he could do; the Zeta-1 lacked a combat simulator, he didn't want to spend any more time with his team-mates then he had to, and forests burned too quickly for him to take out his frustration on anything nearby. The constant oppressions made him angry, and anger ate away at his higher-functions. Chances are, he'd snap at this rate and burn down the entire region. He moved upwards, up the rocky slopes, his thick legs easily clinging onto the rocks and dragging himself up. The downside of his bestial form was the tiny front arms; like the tyrannosaurs of Earth prehistory he was based upon, they were far too small for any useful activity other than raising one up from a lying position. The frustration boiled. Finally, he reached an outward ridge, an open space big enough for him to stand on comfortably. He came here often to clear his mind. Well, the part of it that wasn't obsessed with destruction and war. Shockwave made his weapons well, he'd have to admit. Regardless, the current hatreds he felt were nothing compared to what he felt for that soft-sparked Optimus Prime. The idiot had had the oh-so-grand idea of dumping him, Grimlock, on some pitiful little planet that broke too easily. There was no unending carnage, no titanic armies to battle, and Grimlock's frustration boiled and boiled. He didn't want to scout for energy, he didn't want to study native culture. He wanted to fight. He wanted to kill. "Figured you'd be up here." His thought-track froze up, and thoughts of brutal murder swiftly retreated into a calm recognition. Turning his head slightly, the metallic tyrannosaur took in the sight of the yellow scout, Bumblebee, whom grinned knowingly at his larger comrade. Grimlock would never admit it to anyone other than his own subconscious, but Bumblebee was the only reason he hadn't lost his cool and torn apart his fellow Autobots by now. The aura of happiness and optimism the little scout exuded soothed even his broken and feral mind, and for in the time they spent together, Grimlock thought not of war, but of contentment and friendliness. He'd never admit it, of course. Reputation kept his peace in check. "Hello, Bumblebee." He rumbled, nevertheless unable to keep his sullen mood out of his gravelly tone. The scout seemed curious, and wheeled over to his larger comrade, observing the blood-red optics of the theropod, before replying: "You're not feeling too happy, Grimlock. That's no good at all." "We can't all be happy Bumblebees." He retorted, but it wasn't the hurtful stings he'd normally direct at Jazz or Ratchet, rather a more casual poke. Bumblebee sniggered at it anyway. "True, true, but we also can't all be grumpy Grimlocks!" He said, patting the side of his comrade. "What's wrong, big guy?" What was wrong, indeed. He felt the cloud of anger sweep into his mind, and Grimlock considered unloading a feral rant over how everything had gone wrong; twisted into a new shape by that abominable Decepticon scientist, losing all sense of self to the instinct of war, forced to isolate oneself due to the fear he provoked in his own comrades. How would Bumblebee feel if he had been the one Shockwave had reshaped into a monster? But he never did. That aura of happiness was present, and his anger vaporised. Well, retreated, really; the fiery depths within him could never be extinguished, but at least they might cool somewhat. Bumblebee meant something to him. Other Autobots were cowards who feared him, pacifistic fools who tried to reason with him, or idiots like Optimus Prime who thought they may control him. But Bumblebee wasn't one of those. He was his friend. The word, friend, felt sickeningly awkward to Grimlock, but yet Bumblebee made it feel right. He never asked Grimlock to change, never feared him for his appearance or lust for spilt energon, never even tried to act like he was better than him. All Bumblebee asked was that Grimlock might be his friend. So he accepted. His mind having gone through this, he replied: "Grimlock..... pent up. Decepticons hide like cowards. Autobots annoy Grimlock. Grimlock feel frustrated; no battles to vent out anger." Bumblebee considered his answer, before replying: "Well, that's understandable. I know you hate feeling all cooped up, but don't worry! The Decepticons will try something again, and you can beat them up!" Beat them up. How naive. Grimlock had no intention of merely beating up his foes. He wanted to rip them limb from limb and force them to live the agony he had suffered so long ago in Shockwave's laboratory. He spent many hours fantisising how he would kill the Decepticons, how their Energon would spill over him as he tore- But no. He didn't want to think about that right now, not when Bumblebee was here. This was the odd power the little scout possessed. He was the only one that could calm down the tyrannosaur, the only one who could look into the red optics and see a friend rather than a monster. Grimlock didn't want to think such brutal thoughts around such a young entity. Bumblebee meant something to him. Bumblebee was so naive, inexperienced, happy and child-like. He.... was innocent. He was just an innocent little youngling in a war that did not deserve to touch him. Perhaps that's why Grimlock was so calm with him, content, did not feel alienated. Bumblebee was what Grimlock had lost so long ago; innocence, kindness. What it meant to be a Cybertronian untouched by prejudice, hatred or power-hunger. "Grimlock will beat up every Decepticon." He rumbled. "But right now, Grimlock only feel frustrated." The scout replied cheerfully, clambering onto the back of his comrade, something that Grimlock would gladly eviscerate any other Autobot for doing: "I know what will cheer you up! Some jokes!" "Grimlock rather face entire Decepticon armada." "C'mon, I've got some good ones this time! Okay, this is one Hound told me; why did the Insecticon cross the road?" "......" "Because he felt like 'bugging' the cars!" The scout burst into laughter, clutching at Grimlock's back to stop himself falling off at the hilarity of it all. The tyrannosaur felt something in his processor fizzle and die, and he shook his head with a huff of flame. "C'mon, you're not laughing!" "Grimlock not like Insecticons." Bumblebee pouted and delivered a mock-smack, causing Grimlock to tilt his head and raise a brow at his little friend: "You're no fun, Grimlock! Laughter is the best medicine." Grimlock rolled his optics: "No. Medicine is the best medicine." Bumblebee paused for a moment, blinked once, and then he started laughing again. Oddly, seeing the little scout laugh at his own sarcastic response, Grimlock felt a pulse of some odd feeling move through his processor. It felt like happiness. Hmmmm. "That was really good." Bumblebee sniggered, sliding down off his back to stand in front of him. "I need to tell the others that one." "Grimlock-" "I won't tell them who told me. I'll say I made it up." He laughed, reaching up to pat Grimlock on the 'nose'. The larger Autobot huffed again, thought without the flame this time, but he wasn't feeling that boiling frustration anymore. He felt better. Happier, almost. Such was the odd abilities of Bumblebee. "It's a lovely view." He said, noting the sun slowly beginning to set. Grimlock watched it go, and figured it was alright to look out. He much preferred scattered pieces of Decepticon corpses, but still, he could appreciate watching the sun set with his little friend. Friend wasn't that awkward word when it was applied to Bumblebee. Perhaps that was because friend was truly an accurate description in this case. "Grimlock like it. Nice colours." He agreed, for friendship's sake. Bumblebee nodded and smiled at the theropod: "Glad you're feeling better, Grimlock." "Grimlock not say he's feeling better." "I know. But I see you through your optics, not your words." The scout replied cheerfully, again patting the larger Autobot. "Still maybe you need a hug! Humans feel better with them, and I'm sure you will too!" He rolled his optics: "Grimlock not need hug." Bumblebee may not be a great warrior, but he was persistent at least, and instead of vocally responding, he simply reached up and hugged at the torso of the theropod, who's engine revved in surprise at the sudden contact. It felt odd, probably because he was over twice as large as the one hugging him, but he felt the warm friendship (metaphorically, of course) seep through that aura, and it didn't feel so odd anymore. It was quite nice. A strange change of pace from the typical scars of war. Grimlock heaved a sigh, bid his pride farewell, and wrapped his small arms around the other Autobot's shoulders. Bumblebee laughed: "You're hugging me back, you're hugging me back!" "Grimlock not hug back. Grimlock try to get you off." "You say things, but you don't mean them!" Bumblebee exclaimed happily, finally separating himself from the theropod, and continuing: "C'mon, let's go back to base, buddy! I finally downloaded that game app Ironhide sent me, and it supports two players! Let's go." Before he could even reply, Bumblebee zipped off. Clearly, he was confident Grimlock would follow. And to be honest, he was right. He sighed again, but this time, there was a hint of smile on the toothed maw, and he moved off to follow the scout, his friend, the one Autobot who understood. He took back his earlier statement; however small they were, his arms had their uses.