My first fan fic and the Cybertron Alliance Universe

Discussion in 'Transformers Fan Fiction' started by Crystine, Mar 16, 2008.

  1. Crystine

    Crystine Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2008
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    G'day everyone. I would like to share with you some of my own work. All of my Transformers fan fiction is from the Cybertron Alliance Universe (CAU), an unofficial continuity that I started.

    It is important to note that my fan fiction, although it is CAU, does not necessarily represent the continuity in its absolute form; in fact, it is only one possible aspect of, and there are many different ways a story or series can be written for it. This means that anyone can contribute to it, and if you are interested, your input would be most greatly appreciated.

    So the most important rules of CAU are:
    Megatron, Starscream, Soundwave and Shockwave were never/are not Decepticons (i.e. are not evil).
    Starscream is not traitorous, and is friends with Megatron.
    Some other guidelines are as follows:

    There is a list of featured characters, 17 in total. They don't have to be used in stories at all, however if they are included, there are some guidelines for how to write for them. For example, there is absolutely no pairings for them. However, you may include as many Original Characters (OCs) and other canon characters as you like, and write them how you like (but preferably no slash/erotica).

    And now to introduce to you my first ever attempt at fan fiction, or any complete and published story for that matter. I am currently writing a series entitled The Golden Age of Cybertron, and the very first story in the series is called The Prequel. Original, I know. :p  It has a more simplistic feel to the rest of the series (as Prequels sometimes tend to do). It begins long before G1, The War Within, or any other continuity; i.e. it takes place from The First Golden Age of Cybertron.

    Anyway, I really hope that you enjoy this story and thank you for taking the time to read!


    Author’s note:
    These are the Cybertronian Time standards in relation to their equivalent Earth times, and which are used throughout this story:

    An astro-second is a unit of time; 1 astro-second equals 1/2 of an Earth second.

    A nano-klik equals approximately 1/10th of an Earth second; a klik equals approximately 1 Earth second.
    A cycle equals approximately 1 Earth minute.
    A breem equals approximately 8.3 Earth minutes (or 1000 astro-seconds)
    A quartec equals approximately 1/4 of an Earth day.
    A mega cycle equals approximately 1 Earth hour.
    A deca cycle equals approximately 30 Earth days.
    A stellar cycle equals approximately 1 Cybertronian year (400 Earth days).
    A solar cycle/orn equals 1 Cybertronian day (20 Earth hours).
    A vorn equals approximately 83 Earth years.

    The Golden Age of Cybertron: The Prequel


    In the beginning...

    If one were to witness the event that was unfolding at that moment somewhere in the unknown regions of the Milky Way, primordial would be the word they would use to describe it. A primal energy flow of what looked like lava engulfed this area of space, an unstoppable, magnificent power source that threatened to tear apart and envelop the black void of space that surrounded it. An astronomical feat by any standard; this was the raw energy of creation at work, the miraculous birthing of a new star.

    Only it wasn’t a star. It was a new world in the making, unlike any other: unique, independent, self reliant, sentient. In its initial stages it moved constantly, a great fiery mass, spherical, forming into something, yet not fully knowing itself, but only experiencing, shaping and reshaping, never still, always alive and fluid. It was like a giant, ferocious red serpent, summoned from the deepest and darkest recesses of space, seeking to devour all that came in its path.

    Then, slowly, it began to take form. While moments before it was a shifting ball of plasma, it now transformed into a solid, round mass suspended in space, with a surface that began to acquire definition and detail; a metallic, smooth, silvery surface.

    This newly birthed entity observed its own creation, happy with itself.

    Now all appeared quiet once again, as if nothing much had happened in the universe except maybe the beginnings of a new world, one of the many trillions upon trillions of worlds that must continuously come and go, in just the blink of a universal eye. But appearances were deceiving, and just like there is never a still moment in the movie of creation, so too did this giant, sentient being continue to create. Deep inside itself, in its very core, its very spark, of its existence, there was movement, energy, and activity. A smaller, less magnificent version of the fluid red serpent continued to exist, very much alive and well. A giant lake of hot plasma now flowed, a source of unceasing, eternal energy forever moving and circling in its pit. It made its home here in the very centre of Cybertron; a place hidden and unknown.


    The Iacon City Command Center, like most of the structures on Cybertron, consisted of a smooth, precise material of a Cybertonium metal-crystal alloy. This particular alloy was unique, and possessed the ability to self-repair and rebuild to an original blueprint stored in a holographic form within its crystalline structure - just like the construction of the mechanoid inhabitants themselves – the Transformers.

    The Cybertronian Council Chambers were located within the Command Center, and for the most part were off limits to ordinary personnel.

    As it were, there were thirteen High Council members in all, as there always had been since the first memory of the existence of Cybertronian civilization. How or why these thirteen in particular no one could say for sure; however it was generally known that they were not necessarily the same thirteen original Transformers first created by Primus himself.

    A large, sparsely adorned room within the council chambers was now available for use. An empty, oval table with thirteen seats occupied the center, its smooth, polished lines forming a highly reflective surface. The rest of the room was bare, save for a small object encased inside a viewing panel set deep into the recess of one wall - if someone wasn’t looking for it as they walked into the room, they would barely have noticed it was there.

    Soon the members of the Cybertronian High Council began to file their way in and take their places at the table. Once they were all inside and had seated, the door slid closed behind them. This particular meeting had been called with fairly short notice, and with a certain sense of urgency, a somewhat rare and unusual occurrence for the council.

    The small group of Cybertronians who were assembled exchanged words amongst themselves, completely disregarding the usual protocols that were normally followed at these meetings. The voices all speaking at once made it difficult to discern any intelligent discussion. The air of excitement was apparent and many of the members wanted to have their say without further delay.

    Then a voice spoke from amongst them, more loudly than the others. “We don’t know enough about it – there’s no telling what could happen!”

    The owner of the voice was a mechanoid, or mech for short, by the name of Alpha Trion. His appearance differed somewhat to the other Transformers – his origins were unknown and it was dubious he was a native of Cybertron itself – as well as the fact that he was the only robot here who did not actually have the ability to transform.

    Alpha Trion’s statement caused a further onslaught of comments and opinions to be let loose.

    “I agree; it’s too soon,” one of the other council members replied, who was sitting directly opposite him. “The prototypes wouldn’t even function without their basic personality programs – most of them are only suited for basic tasks and –”

    He got cut off abruptly as another member, a taller, sleek blue Transformer, decided that he should speak up then. “That shouldn’t be a problem. The legend says that the Key will grant sentience to a basic cybernetic form. The Autobots are more than ready – after all, they were developed to be just like us in every way... they could function just like we do. There have never been any problems with them, for many eons now.”

    He was referring to the Key to Vector Sigma, a long lost legend of Cybertronian history that, until now, its existence had remained a mystery. Many doubted its powers, and merely claimed these stories to be just a myth. Many of the original Transformers, the very first created, came from what was known as The Source, of which very little else was known about it. The story goes that one day, The Source just sealed itself, never to create another Transformer again. The legend claims that this Key to Vector Sigma is the only remaining artifact in existence that is somehow directly connected to The Source, and so possesses the same powers - but this yet remained to be proven.

    “Every way except free will!” Alpha Trion responded quickly, answering the blue Transformer. “The ability to think for themselves, to feel, to be alive! That is the one thing we could never give them, and the Key to Vector Sigma itself is just a legend, it’s never been proven to work.”

    Alpha Trion finished speaking and looked around for approval by the others. He generally disagreed with the idea of granting sentience to mechanical protoforms that were designed and built by them, especially when their primary purpose was to serve them, and not to be like them. The ‘Autobots,’ as they were called, lacked the essence of life, the spark that every living Transformer possessed in their core. There was no way known to create a new, sentient Transformer, not since The Source had become inactive so long ago, and yet here they were, discussing the very possibility of it, all thanks to the discovery at long last of the Holy Grail of Cybertron legend – the Key. Regardless, he considered himself to be a fairly reasonable mech, and was willing to listen to the opposing point of view, even if he was somewhat dubious of it. His main concern, when it came down to it, was the danger underlying the activation and use of the Key. For him, the risk was too great and simply not warranted - at least not until they were sure it was safe to use.

    The approval that Alpha Trion sought did not come, but instead a momentary haze of silence settled upon the entire assembly, as if they were all waiting with baited breath for some incredible miracle to occur right before their very optics. Every now and again, the more unsettled and apprehensive of the members would take a quick glance at the golden object, safely sealed within its recess in the chamber’s wall, but only for an instant. Most of them could hardly believe that the sacred Key to Vector Sigma had actually been found. But there it was, its existence as plain as day, and within only a few astro-seconds’ reach from those who were lucky enough to be a part of the established council.

    Finally, a heavily-armored mechanoid broke the silence. “The Key has finally been found,” he spoke softly and waited for a moment before proceeding. “At long last, and for the first time in over many millions of stellar cycles, with this key we finally have a way to be able to bring life to our prototypes... to create them as equals.” The other council members listened, absorbed by his words, and by the possibilities that they brought. Looking around the room, the speaker saw that he now gained the others’ attention, and continued. “I say we would be foolish to give up this opportunity. We should at least try! Vector Prime, surely you have an opinion on this matter?”

    The aforementioned Transformer sat quietly at one end of the table, not having spoken a word since the beginning of the meeting. Vector Prime was one of the most respected and most powerful of all Cybertronians, and one glance at him would quickly tell you why. His mostly impenetrable armor was an amazing detail of blue, silver and magenta, and he stood much taller and larger than most of the others here. Everyone knew he wielded the most powerful sword known in their existence, which was given the name the Cyber Caliber, and had the ability to manipulate time and space itself. That, along with his magnificent transformational mode of a spacecraft, gave him the title of being the Guardian of Space and Time. He was also one of the original thirteen.

    “I do; however, it is only fair that each of you has had a chance to speak,” that was all Vector Prime had to say on the issue for the moment. One of his strong points was his infinite patience and ability to reserve judgment until all possible angles of a situation had been carefully considered. “Primacron, you have not yet spoken. Is there anything you wish to share with us?”

    Silence followed on the mention of this name. Seated opposite Vector Prime, the one known as Primacron was the only other council member amongst them who was thought to be an original. There were others who believed otherwise – that he came not from Primus, but from some other unknown, darker energy source – and who mistrusted and were even a little fearful of him. He hardly ever attended council meetings or made his presence known, but when he did, he left the other members with an unshakable feeling of apprehension and discomfort. Primacron himself simply sat there in silence, waiting for his turn to speak. His outer armor completely covered his features, which nobody had ever actually seen in person. He was a large, imposing being, completely enshrouded in mystery, and seemed to be surrounded by shadows that inexplicably came from nowhere.

    “The Key... should never have been found!” His voice raspy and ominous, Primacron now reminded the other members why he was sometimes referred to as The Dark One, although no one dared call him that name in his presence. “It should have remained buried in the depths of Cybertron. The Creation Pit lost its power to grant life all those eons ago... for a good reason. We do not need sentient Autobots; we need servants, subordinates to build Cybertron’s armies.”

    The heavily-armored mech, the one who had summoned Vector Prime, spoke again. “Ridiculous! We don’t need armies; our planet is a peaceful one, and granting the Autobots sentience can only be of benefit to our civilization.”

    The Dark One seemed to regard his remarks with contempt; however it was difficult to tell what he was thinking due to his well-hidden features that were protected underneath his armor.

    “Regardless, I have been informed that the Autobots have already begun to show the first signs. It is only a matter of time before they become like the rest of us then,” Vector Prime interjected, changing the topic of the conversation slightly.

    “Perhaps, but that will only happen with the use of the Key,” Alpha Trion replied. “Without it, the signs will remain just that – and nothing more.”


    Shockwave was by anyone’s definition an imposing, powerful mech. His presence was unmistakable, and his reputation left nothing to be desired. Appointed by the council members themselves for his superior knowledge and skill, he spent most of his time overlooking and directing the daily goings on of the Iacon City complex, Cybertron’s primary command post. His specialized design was unique amongst Cybertronians, and it was rumored that he was an original, however the records to such knowledge had been lost long ago and thus all speculation as to his origin and primary function remained just that – speculation. Of course, Shockwave would never deny or admit any of these claims, and as he was a very private mech most of the time, he preferred to keep it that way.

    There weren’t many that knew Shockwave on a deeply personal level, but those who did, knew him to be a very loyal and considerate friend, and whom they could trust with their lives. That is why Vector Prime had initially proposed to council that Shockwave should be amongst those in charge of all aspects of Cybertron’s primary city of Iacon. Council opposed his recommendation at first, but after a long and drawn out deliberation, Vector Prime had finally managed to turn the majority of the members’ votes around. Shockwave had been the first of two to be selected for the role. And he did not disappoint.

    Soundwave, his closest adviser and friend, and the mech who had been appointed as co-commander, stood beside him now as they both inspected their team of Autobots.

    They were all currently offline, lined up neatly in a row against one wall. Most of them had wires and connectors of some kind attached to them, most probably to allow access to their central processors for programming and readjustments. Like their Cybertronian creators, the Autobots had the ability to transform their shape and function from their normal robot forms, to a specialized alternate form, which was usually vehicular.

    Shockwave busily pressed some controls on his console, and then walked along past some of the protoforms. The first one was larger than the others; he had a strong, stately construction that consisted of a mostly silver and black coating. He was equipped with a powerful fusion cannon on his right arm, and on his chest was the standard Autobot insignia, a red symbol of the mythical face of their deity, Primus, that all Autobots were adorned with. This Autobot would make a great leader some day, Shockwave thought.

    Next along were three similar looking protoforms, but each with different color schemes. They were seeker jets in their alternate form, designed and built specifically to dominate the skies. They outmaneuvered most other flight capable Transformers, and were the first of their kind. Next to them were three more Autobots, tall and well built, sleek and designed for front line combat, if that were ever needed. They had an impressive arsenal of weaponry at their disposal. Shockwave stopped momentarily in front of them, observing them, and then continued on.

    He was pleased with the way most of these protoforms had evolved, especially since he had designed and built them himself, along with the aide of Soundwave. They were the first wave of Autobots. But that was a long time ago, and he had since designated the task of creating the newer series of Autobots to the other scientists and engineers. Still, these were the very first ones, and they had proven to be very reliable and useful over the hundreds of thousands of stellar cycles since their construction and activation.

    Shockwave came to a stop in front of the next one, inspecting it carefully; making sure everything was in order. It appeared to be. He was a little more curious about this one, especially since the majority of the reports being sent to him regarding the spontaneous personality anomalies occurring amongst the Autobot ranks were of the mech standing in front of him now. He was not as tall as the others, nor had he any obvious weaponry or heavy armor to speak of, which gave the impression he was less aggressive and more ‘friendly’ than his counterparts. There was a similar looking Autobot next to him, since most of the protoforms had either two or three duplicates each but were still different enough and distinguishable enough from one another, usually by their color variations, accessories, or both. This Autobot’s double did not have the same black and white color scheme, nor did he have the blue visor that covered the former Autobot’s optic sensors. Shockwave waited for its activation, blue visor emanating a soft blue glow as it did so.

    “State your primary code and function,” Shockwave said simply, his singular optic flashing as he spoke. He waited for the expected reply from the Autobot, and got it.

    “Autobot identification code: 44-23-05. Codename: Jazz. Function: All-purpose cybernetic prototype; specification: communications.”

    “Run Level 1 diagnostics,” Shockwave continued after a short pause.

    Jazz silently complied, initiating his standard in-built diagnostics program as ordered.

    “It’s just a routine maintenance; why a Level 1?”

    Shockwave turned to face the owner of the voice that had just spoken behind him. It belonged to their primary engineer, who went by the name of Wheeljack. He had entered the room to offer his assistance to the two residing mechs. He was a jovial and rather animated Cybertronian who was always ready to lend a hand and offer his expertise.

    Soundwave answered his query from the computer console where he stood. “Attempting to determine source of spontaneous anomalies,” he explained, his monotonic, synthesized voice greeting Wheeljack.

    Wheeljack gave Soundwave a quick nod and walked up to the line of Autobots to stand beside Shockwave, watching the maintenance check with interest. Jazz had apparently completed his scan and was now on stand by, waiting for his next order.

    “Jazz: report,” the purple mech commanded.

    A slight pause, and then Jazz’s unique, deeply melodic voice responded. “All systems operating within acceptable parameters... looks like I check out ok.”

    Wheeljack observed Jazz’s unusual behavior with great interest. “Spontaneous anomalies, huh? You don’t say,” he said to no one in particular, voicing his thoughts aloud.

    The Autobots were relatively self-sufficient on their own, and quite capable of performing their assigned tasks, however a complex personality matrix was not part of their makeup, since it was neither possible to incorporate one into their subsystems successfully, nor was it required for them to function. Well, maybe it wasn’t entirely impossible, but it was nevertheless a risky and highly unstable procedure without a spark to contain and assimilate such a program. Quite simply, it would fail without the Key to Vector Sigma, or direct access to The Source, to grant them a spark. As such, their main personality programs were all currently disconnected, save for a basic minimal algorithm that was operating from the larger matrix. Shockwave had had the foresight to include the full matrix module to begin with, for the remote chance that perhaps one day, it may be used. Vector Prime had encouraged the hope that it may be possible to bring these Autobots to life, hence the personality matrix would then become a crucial part of their makeup, and it seemed that now, that day was slowly but surely approaching. With Shockwave’s recent discovery of the Key, it seemed more possible now than it had ever been before.

    “Affirmative; within the personality algorithms,” Soundwave’s voice drifted over to them, having heard Wheeljack’s comment and promptly replying.

    “There have been quite a number of reports and they all seem to be indicating the same thing,” Shockwave explained, expanding upon Soundwave’s statement for Wheeljack’s benefit.

    “Yeah, what’s that?”

    Shockwave looked at Wheeljack, and then back at the Autobot Jazz before continuing. “Apparently, some of the Autobots are beginning to spontaneously evolve beyond their original programming... essentially, they seem to be developing personalities beyond their basic algorithm.”

    Wheeljack thought about this, considering all possibilities and explanations with his lightning speed processor. “...but how is that possible, Shockwave?” That was all that he could come up with for the moment. However, it sounded like a puzzle that he was only too eager to help solve. He turned to Soundwave for a possible explanation.

    “Cause uncertain: however full spectrum analysis reveals unusual core radiation.”

    Shockwave then added, finishing the sentence for him. “...not unlike our own.”


    Primal energon flowed continuously, a formless, liquefied mass swirling and bubbling away. It resembled a lava pit - not unlike the Creation Pit of The Source. Only this wasn’t The Source, at least not the original Source of Primus. Here, hidden away in an unknown part of the galaxy, no one in their rightful mind would dare to approach it, not even the mightiest and bravest of warriors.

    He looked on in satisfaction from a dark recess of the rock cave at the plasma pit before him. This was his favorite part, the part where he could finally discard his hideous robotic body to reveal his true form beneath. The more he had to pretend and act like one of them, the more vengeful and full of rage he became. And even now, shedding his pretend form, very few decent mechs or beings alike got to see his natural state, and lived to tell about it. And of those few who did manage to survive - albeit a very rare but cursed few - soon became weakened and plagued by insanity; the nightmarish hallucinations and suffering they endured, and that followed them all the days of the rest of their agonized lives, becoming the stuff of morbid legend that only a brave storyteller dared speak of.

    Even Primacron, his assumed name, caused him to react with disgust at the very thought of it. He had been known by many different names, and none of them even rang close to his true one, which was phonetically impossible to pronounce. Not to matter, he thought to himself, it was only a matter of time and then this charade, this ridiculous waiting game, would be over, and he would finally rule!

    The Dark One continued watching the pit, his repulsive, twisted form - neither organic nor inorganic, but somewhere in between - loomed over it threateningly. A sudden disturbance in the energon flow became apparent, and then, slowly but surely, something began to take shape, emerging from the depths of the abyss and taking form right before his eyes. An evil smirk showed his deep satisfaction to what was his newest creation.

    Soon... very soon... the Key to Vector Sigma shall be mine! Finally I will rule all of Cybertron!

    The cybernetic form stood in front of him on the rocky floor, as still as the emptiness of space. This new servant was impressively large, almost rivaling his creator in stature and form, and resembled a mighty half mech-half beast. It had a large set of protruding teeth from a hellish, gaping mouth, and a set of reddish optics that seemed to pierce at one’s very spark. The heavy armory of its black and shade of dark green seemed as if it could withstand the onslaught of a thousand warriors all too easily. However, for the moment at least, it was lifeless, nothing more than an impressive, but empty, protoform shell.

    “You shall be my first!” The dark master proclaimed. Then, pleased with what he saw, he began to laugh, a chilling and sinister laugh that would have sent shivers down the spine of anyone who heard it. Yes, he would have his way very soon, and beware any accursed, wretched spark that dared stand in his way!


    The Autobots needed recharging on a regular basis, and it was part of Shockwave’s responsibility to see to it that they were each and all accounted for at the beginning of their recharge cycle. He would get his own a little later on, having opted instead to stay at his post for a while longer in order to allow the other Cybertronians, who helped run the Command Center with him, to get their chance to recharge. Other than the presence of Shockwave monitoring the vast array of command consoles and computer monitors, it was dark and relatively quiet in the adjacent rooms and hallways where he now worked. All that could be heard was the soft tapping as he scrolled through and analyzed the data files that had been compiled earlier of the Autobots’ diagnostics readouts. There were definite inconsistencies in the data, but he could not yet make any real sense of it. The only explanation that he could come up with at the moment, and at the risk of sounding preposterous and inconceivable, was the idea that somehow, the Autobots’ empty core chambers were changing, as if responding to – or preparing for, the assimilation of a spark. But that was impossible. Nothing like this had ever happened before, and in his many vorns of service, he had never seen anything like this, ever.

    A sudden abrupt sound interrupted his thoughts, and he turned towards the distraction without delay. It seemed to have come from somewhere near the council chambers, which were located directly to his right. Shockwave headed towards the doors to investigate.

    He reminded himself that the security system was on full stand by and on priority alert, as it always was at this time of night, and would have picked up any unauthorized access to this area of the complex, thereby alerting him and his backup team immediately in case of such an event.

    Inside the council chambers, a black, metallic and grotesque hand, with fingers that resembled blades tapering to fine points, silently and effortlessly found its way inside the enclosed panel that contained the golden Key. Wasting no time at all, the owner of the hand grabbed the prized possession out of its encasing with a swift, but rough, gesture. Then the hand hesitated for only a moment, as the purple mech entered the chambers – but only for a moment. Other than its hand, the rest of the intruder’s countenance was completely shrouded in darkness.

    Shockwave realized that it was almost impossible to make any positive identification of the unwelcome visitor. A quick realization of the dimness of the room told him that something was definitely amiss, since the automatic lighting system should have activated by now. Whoever, or whatever, was currently in the room with him would have had to have more than just a basic access clearance level to the council chambers, but he would worry about that later. Right now, he had to do whatever he could to stop this intruder from escaping with the Key to Vector Sigma.

    Shockwave raised his ray-gun arm and pointed it directly at the dark figure, realizing he had a clear shot, and prepared to fire.

    “You are unauthorized to –” He began, but was very quickly cut off, as all of a sudden he was knocked offline by some invisible, yet powerful blast, and collapsed to the floor. It had happened so quickly that there had been no chance he could have prevented the attack, even if he had fired his own weapon without hesitation.


    It was unusual for anyone to be admitted to the repair bay for anything other than routine maintenance, or a scheduled upgrade. After all, the Transformers were a relatively peaceful race, being predominantly explorers, and were not in any current state of war.

    So when the news of what had happened in the council chambers during the last recharge cycle was made known, it took most of the mechs by surprise.

    Vector Prime displayed no indication of any such surprise to the unfortunate event, however, but instead calmly observed the fallen mech who now lay on a repair berth, while he pondered their next course of action. Meanwhile, Wheeljack worked busily on Shockwave’s repairs, bent over him in focused concentration, a portable scanner in one hand. Soundwave was assisting him.

    “Ok, we’re almost done. Although I gotta tell you, that weapons blast is unlike any I’ve ever seen before,” Wheeljack commented, looking up from his work. He made some last few adjustments before reactivating Shockwave, who then sat up and immediately proceeded to run a routine scan on himself. After a few moments, he stood up, satisfied.

    “Shockwave, did you get a positive identification on the intruder?” Vector Prime asked him, once the purple robot had regained his bearings.

    Shockwave recalled the dark, mysterious figure from the previous night and realized with regret that the Key to Vector Sigma - the Key to their only hope of being able to continue the Transformer race – was lost. The Key that he had found, and that he had now lost. His shoulders slumped slightly at the thought. “No... Whoever or whatever it was... I have not encountered before.”

    “Are you certain?” Vector Prime asked, still deep in thought.

    “I am positive Vector Prime. It was neither from Cybertron, nor was it an Autobot,” he replied assuredly.

    “Well who else could have had such access to the council chambers?” Heads turned to see the mech that had now spoken. It was Alpha Trion, standing behind Vector Prime. He had quietly entered the room at some point, and had stopped to listen to the conversation. Concern and frustration were evident in his voice.

    “And gotten past you so easily?” Wheeljack added, addressing Shockwave.

    Unfortunately, no one had any ready answers. Silence came over them momentarily as they each tried to make sense of it all.

    “My analysis indicates...” Soundwave broke the silence, wanting to give them some answer, any answer that could possibly be of help. “...Primacron to be the most likely suspect.”

    A pause, and then, “Primacron? That is inconceivable, Soundwave,” Vector Prime reasoned. However, no one had any better ideas right now, and so he allowed himself to consider the possibility. “He is a member of the council; even if he did steal the Key, the security monitors would have picked up it was he.”

    “Perhaps he had some way to override them,” Shockwave suggested.

    Then another pause before Vector Prime continued questioning Soundwave. “What analysis do you speak of, Soundwave?”

    “I took the liberty of conducting a subliminal mind scan in his presence. However, I was not able to access his thought patterns,” was the ready reply.

    Wheeljack was curious as always. “Wait – you mean you couldn’t actually read his mind?” That was very unusual. Soundwave’s mind manipulation capabilities were extremely advanced, and no being known, organic or otherwise, was immune to them.

    “Correct, Wheeljack. My mind reading capability is close to invulnerable – it appears he may be in possession of some form of advanced technology that is currently unknown to us.”

    “This is most interesting. However, it still does not prove that he is the one responsible,” Vector Prime continued, impartial. The others knew he was right, and now the task of repossessing the Key would undoubtedly not be an easy one.

    “Well, it’s the only lead we’ve got, for now,” Wheeljack countered. “I mean come on, Vector Prime; didn’t you say before that he was the only council member strongly opposed to giving the Autobots their own sparks?”

    “Yes, perhaps... but what use then would the Key be to him?”


    The Key would be very useful to him. Indeed, extremely useful to him. He was most pleased with the recent success of his plan. Now finally, after so many eons gone by, and for the first time since he was cursed with the gift of existence, the Key to Vector Sigma, the only known access to The Source of great power, was his.

    The Dark One clutched it tightly in his hand, as he observed his loyal servant. He could almost feel the power of the Key throbbing, just waiting for somebody to unleash its power, a power that had lain dormant since time immemorial.

    Alas, he had waited so long, the search for the small artifact having come abruptly to an end the moment he had heard that someone had found it before he did. That had been the most pleasant news that he had received for the longest time. And to think, he had almost given up the search, had been almost ready to admit defeat and move on to an alternative method of satisfying his insatiable desire for ultimate power. Almost.

    And now he would wait not a moment longer. As soon as his servant had successfully acquired the guarded possession from right under that purple mech’s care, he had wasted no time in making his way here, to the inner depths of Cybertron, to where the sealed Creation Pit lay waiting for his arrival so he could make use of it once more.

    He turned to his creation, which had silently and obediently followed him all the way down here, after having handed over the Key to its master.

    “Good work, my loyal servant. Now, prepare to awaken!”

    The voice of The Dark One echoed and resonated eerily inside the empty Vault that contained the supercomputer of the Transformer race, the heart of Cybertron’s function and operation, and the keeper of The Source – Vector Sigma.

    He knew this place well, knew every switch, button and control console of the supercomputer, as well as all of its inner workings and functions, in great detail. After all, he had spent most of his time in preparation for this momentous event, ever patient and ever hopeful, in order that he could fulfill his wish and finally rule. It was his rightful place to do so, he thought.

    He strode over to a darkened control panel, touched a few buttons, and it lit up. The overhead view screen, which had been abandoned and unused for millennia, now flickered to life. A slight hum emanated from it, and then silence.

    There was a certain sequence of commands that needed to be performed, in order for the Key to be activated correctly, and this sequence was known only to a select few – a closely protected secret to safeguard its use in the event that a situation such as this would ever occur. Well, he smirked derisively to himself, that had not been a problem, as he skillfully placed the Key in the correct sequence in its slot.

    The brilliant flash of white light that followed startled even him, but only momentarily. He quickly regained his composure, and then activated a circular platform that would be used to grant life, and with it sentience, to his protoform.

    Appearing to know exactly what to do, the servant drone proceeded to step onto the platform without delay, no words of instruction needed. After a few kliks, the drone began to glow eerily, as if it was being overloaded with a luminescent radiation and would explode into a brilliant, hellish inferno. But that did not happen, and instead its master watched his creation as the glow within it subsided, the body and armor returning to its previous state once more.

    And it was done, as quickly and as simply as that.

    The new Transformer came to life, its countenance diffused with the miracle of life that had been very obviously lacking only a few moments before. The Dark One watched with a lurid satisfaction as his living creation slowly surveyed its surroundings, stepping down from the platform in realization of its new-found self-awareness. If its demeanor had been at all terrifying before, it was tenfold more so now.

    But The Dark One was still its master, and that would never change. He stepped towards his new servant, slowly, regarding it in admiration.

    The former drone seemed to know what was required of him immediately, without having to be told. It bowed before its master in demonstration of its loyalty.

    “Are you ready to carry out your first mission...” The Dark One spoke, breaking the unnatural silence that undoubtedly existed as a result of the presence of such evil. “...Liege Maximo?” The Dark One concluded after a moment of thought, pleased with his new second-in-command.

    The newly appointed Liege slowly raised his head to face his Master. “Yes, my Lord. What are your orders?”

    “Good... very, very good,” the most evil being replied, speaking his thoughts aloud. His efforts were slowly proving to be worthwhile, his will gradually coming to fruition. Soon, nothing and no one would be able to stop him – and he would finally have his way!

    He could not help the evil cackle that emanated from his vocal unit at the thought.


    The Liege Maximo accessed a computer within an empty room somewhere in the hidden depths of Polyhex, Iacon’s smaller, sister city that was located on the other side of the globe. Like Iacon, this city was a multi-leveled one, only more compact and uniform, but still a busy and thriving hub engaged in all manner of active comings and goings.

    The perfect place to set up a secret military base, thought The Liege. Personally he couldn’t wait to carry out his orders; he reveled at the thought of the total domination and subjugation of the Cybertronian high council and its subordinates, and ultimately, the entire race.

    It had been approximately three deca cycles since his first day of activation, three deca cycles during which he had diligently and unceasingly worked under the Master’s guidance, to learn all that he was required to learn – the art of manipulation, war and the black arts. He had absorbed his training with extreme interest and willingness, and had even outperformed the Master’s own expectations. He had proven to be a powerful, brutal and remorseless warrior, designed and created to crush all and any opponent that dared stand against him.

    He was promised his own army to control – and indeed this was delivered to him in no time at all. New, dedicated cybernetic drones suddenly began to emerge from within Polyhex Central, for his own perusal.

    For now, these new creations were to remain hidden, and so were only allowed to occupy the underground military base – but their numbers were growing steadily each day, and it was only a matter of time before the Master himself would give the order that he was waiting for – and then, then, the real fun could begin.

    The door to his quarters gave a chime, and he turned towards it, distracted from his work. That must be the expected visitor, he thought. Good, on time. He punched some controls in front of him, and the door slid open.

    The Liege observed the newcomer with interest, taking a long moment to study him. However, his dislike of the Autobot was immediately apparent. Then again, he generally disliked all Autobots. He regarded them as inferior.

    The Master certainly delivers on his promises, The Liege thought. Of course, he hadn’t been quite sure what to expect, until now. He hadn’t been told very much of whom he would be receiving – only that it would be an Autobot, on which he was to perform the experiment upon.

    “Come closer, Autobot,” he finally commanded.

    The Autobot complied immediately, walking closer towards The Liege, and then appeared to wait for further instructions.

    The Liege observed him more closely. Impressive, even for an Autobot. He stood tall, with the appearance of a well-built, capable warrior, a mostly silver-grey exterior complementing his demeanor nicely. He would fit in quite well. Perhaps he could be assigned to transportation duties, or maybe if he was lucky – manufacturing. Whoever had designed him had done a reasonable job, he thought reluctantly, in spite of himself. A reasonable job indeed. The black fusion cannon mounted on the Autobot’s right arm did not escape his notice, either.

    Who knew? This plan may even work. Despite The Liege’s full loyalty to his Master, he had his doubts about this... project. Giving Autobots sentience was... aversive, to say the least. Still, it was worth a try, especially if the results turned out to be desirable.

    “So, I am informed that you are the strongest and most skilled in combat amongst... the Autobots,” he spoke, emphasizing the last word with obvious distaste. He went back to his computer screens, not expecting any reply. “We shall see about that.”

    He continued to study something on his monitors before continuing, not looking up. “What is your primary code and function?”

    “Autobot identification code: 40-04-12. Codename: Megatron. Function: Leader class cybernetic prototype; specification: military operations.”

    This made The Liege look up. Leader Class Military Operations. He may have underestimated its abilities. “Who do you obey?”

    The cybernetic prototype gave him the standard reply. “I am programmed to receive instructions from cybernetic units with a Level 1 clearance code.”

    That was simple enough. His Master had provided him with all the clearance codes he needed. “Good. Clearance code: 6-9-0-0-1-ALPHA. Prepare to receive new instructions.” He watched the emotionless face of the Autobot as it assimilated his instructions.

    A pause followed as Megatron processed this latest information. The Liege was beginning to worry that he had perhaps used the wrong instruction code, or that his plan had already been discovered and that the Autobot’s owners had remotely locked any further access to his systems. “Clearance code accepted. Voice identification recognized. Ready.”

    Frustration quickly overcame relief, and he grimaced. Pathetic Autobot, he thought.

    “You belong to me now. I am your new master. You are to accept orders only from me and those that I have authorized. Is that understood?”

    Because if it's not, I will not hesitate to terminate you, right here and now, Autobot. The Liege was beginning to lose patience. Talking to a drone was not his idea of time well spent.

    “New instructions assimilated into primary program,” Megatron simply replied.

    Satisfied with that, The Liege then proceeded to open an access port via a small panel in the back of the Autobot’s neck, barely discernible. He then installed a tiny device into its circuitry, a device that he seemed to have been holding in his hand the whole time. A few kliks was all it took, and when he had finished, he closed the port. Then he turned back towards his control consoles, walking quickly up to and past them, until finally stopping at the opposite wall. Once there, he activated a secret compartment, the existence of which unknown to all but him and his Master.

    The Liege Maximo carefully pulled the sacred Key from within the panel, observed it for a moment, and then quickly strode back towards the Autobot Megatron, with it in his hand.

    “Prepare to receive a very special gift, Autobot,” The Liege proclaimed, speaking his thoughts aloud.

    Progress had also been made during these last three deca cycles in relation to The Key to Vector Sigma. No longer was it necessary to be in the vicinity of the Creation Pit in order for it to be activated and used. It was now a portable device, and this had made his job a lot easier. As long as he held it in his hand, he could grant sentience to whomever he wished.

    Liege Maximo activated the Key, and the Autobot Megatron was given life.

    “Now, with whom do you pledge your allegiance?” The Liege asked him, making sure that his Master’s plans had not been futile.

    To Megatron, it felt as if the world around him had suddenly come to life, as if he had awoken from a long, dreamless sleep. Who he was, or what he was doing here, were as yet unclear to him, and while his audio sensors received the spoken signal from the entity currently standing before him, his automatic response unit kicked in, providing his vocal processor with the correct response.

    “To you, my master.”

    That felt... unfamiliar. What was he doing here, and whom had he just promised his allegiance to? Megatron quickly ran a self-check for any possible clues as to why he felt as if he had a conflict somewhere in his programming. Meanwhile, the other entity seemed oblivious to his internal goings on, and perhaps that was for the best. He didn’t know exactly why, though.

    The Dark One appeared from out of the shadows, to stand beside his second-in-command. He was very pleased.


    Soundwave easily assimilated the live data stream that was being fed through from all sectors of Iacon’s central Command Center. He worked as quickly as he could, sifting through the reports for something that could explain the latest security alert. Apparently, one or more of the Autobots had been compromised, and could not be reached by the usual channels. Something was seriously wrong.

    Soundwave was not a mech of many words, but when he spoke, others usually listened. He commanded an unequivocal respect that could only be gained from the many vorns of outstanding active service such as he had given. Like his counterpart Shockwave, he considered Cybertron and all its inhabitants worth dedicating his life to, and if required of him, dying for. He would easily and without hesitation sacrifice himself for his friends if need be, and likewise his friends would do the same for him. Fortunately, this had never been asked of him.

    Shockwave stood at the other console, also trying to find an explanation to the current security alert. Occupying the command room with Soundwave and himself were a number of other Cybertronians and mechs, while some of the Autobots were online and actively attending to their assigned tasks.

    Wheeljack was also at his post, working alongside Cybertron’s chief scientist, a red and navy blue, solidly built Cybertronian by the name of Perceptor. A powerful light cannon, which could also be used as a viewing lens, was mounted on the scientist’s left shoulder.

    Soundwave’s findings confirmed it. “Command is unrecognized. Malfunction apparent.”

    “I am getting no response. Have the other Autobots acknowledged?” Shockwave answered him quickly.

    “All except one. Codename: Megatron. Unable to establish communications link-up.” Soundwave concentrated on the monitor in front of him without looking up, as he gave his response.

    “Try the alternative control sub-routine.”

    A pause as Soundwave went to work. The other mechs in the room stopped what they were doing to watch them, preparing to offer their assistance if it was needed.

    “Negative: no response.”

    This was not a good sign. It could only mean one of two things: either the Autobot in question had malfunctioned in some unforeseeable way and couldn’t be contacted, or the Autobot had been compromised by an unauthorized command, which could have resulted in a malfunction, or worse, irreparable damage. If the case was the former, it was a relatively simple matter of sending out a search and retrieval unit to locate and secure the Autobot, but if the case was the latter... well, they could only hope that it was not so.

    It wasn’t just the fact that these Autobots belonged to them – they were far more valuable than that. These Autobots were designed to be more than just simple drones. They had been implemented with a technology that had been personally developed and perfected by the small team of scientists and engineers at Iacon. In theory, these Autobots had the potential to expand, to grow from their original programming so that one day they may be regarded as equals, and become fully sentient, just like their creators. But this was only theory thus far, the missing link being the ability to infuse their central cores with a spark, the final untested and unpredictable stage of their development. True it was more of an unrealized dream than a proven reality, but as long as the Key to Vector Sigma existed, then that hope could some day very well turn into reality.

    Unfortunately, if anyone were to get their hands on one of the protoforms, not only could their dreams of continuing and expanding the Transformer race be threatened, but their own existence could be at risk as well. In the wrong hands, the information that would be acquired about the Transformer technology could be used against them. Their advanced technology was, at least up until now, known only to them – the Level 1 personnel and the members of the Cybertronian council – and no one else. Hopefully it would remain that way.

    Wheeljack strode triumphantly over to his superior, a data pad in hand. “Shockwave, I think I got something.”

    The Cybertronian being addressed turned to acknowledge the engineer. Hopefully, he had a viable lead. “Proceed.”

    “Well, ah... I’ve managed to track down Megatron’s last known co-ordinates before we lost contact.”

    That was good enough. “Thank you, Wheeljack.”

    As Wheeljack transferred over the data, Shockwave turned towards two Autobots nearest to him and gave them new orders.

    “Ratchet, Hardtop, proceed to these co-ordinates. Locate and retrieve Autobot Megatron. Immediately.”

    “Yes, Commander,” Ratchet and Hardtop said in unison, stopping what they had been doing without delay to accept their new mission.


    Megatron had been following The Liege Maximo closely for the past few mega cycles, and he was beginning to feel uncomfortable. Still, he would keep his feelings to himself, for now. He wanted to learn as much as he could about himself and his surroundings, before taking any self-initiated actions. But for now however, he was fully absorbed in his new experience – that of being... alive.

    They finally arrived at what he learned to be the Polyhex Communications Centre, a drab, minimally furnished, upper sector of the command post.

    He noted that his ‘Commanding Officer’ seemed to believe that he was still the unthinking, obedient drone from his former existence, since he was certainly being treated as such. No matter... perhaps he could use The Liege’s abrasive, careless attitude to his advantage.

    “This is where you will be assigned for most of your active mega cycles. You are to monitor any and all transmissions, and report directly to me,” the larger mech explained brusquely. Then he turned towards his subordinate, sneering at him menacingly, wanting to emphasize his authority. “Is that perfectly clear? I do not tolerate insubordination of any kind - unless you want an untimely end to your precious life, Autobot!”

    Megatron did not reply immediately; the threats did not seem to faze him. He had seen and heard enough of this self-absorbed tyrant. Now he wanted to test him a little.

    “My programming instructs me to pledge my allegiance to you, Liege, however I... feel...”

    “You feel what?” The Liege replied abruptly, baring his fangs as his repulsive lips curled back in anger. “You feel only what I tell you to feel, nothing more, is that clear? I gave you life. Without me you would not even exist! You belong to me now.”

    That is what you think, Megatron thought, amused, but did not show it. “Yes... master.”


    Ratchet and Hardtop could not approach the co-ordinates they had been given; they found that they could progress no further. They had arrived at an isolated area of Sector 27, which made up part of Polyhex’s lower levels. All access panels denied them entrance to the deeper sections of the city. Also, there was no sign of Autobot 40-04-12 to be found. There was no other choice now but to turn around and make their way back to Iacon.

    Ratchet radioed their current position back to headquarters, and awaited confirmation of their next instructions. It was a secure channel; Soundwave had taken extra precautions before allowing the two Autobots to proceed, so that their actions and whereabouts could be fully monitored at all times. They would not be in any danger, but if necessary, a backup unit could be deployed to assist them within a few cycles.

    Back at Iacon, their progress was being monitored. “There must be some mistake,” Wheeljack thought aloud, glancing at the data relayed by the Autobots. “That can’t be the co-ordinates I extrapolated.”

    “There is no mistake,” Shockwave said. “The co-ordinates are correct. However, it appears that they are not accessible.”

    “That’s impossible. We have full access to all areas of Cybertron. Don’t we?”

    “Most areas. There are still many hidden, unexplored parts of Cybertron that we have yet to discover,” Vector Prime spoke, standing behind the pair of them as he offered his knowledge and assistance.

    Cybertron made up for its relatively small size by the many intricate tiers, access points and passageways cleverly packed together throughout its entire mass. It was easy to get lost if one did not have their proper bearings.

    A transceiver blipped, and Soundwave opened a communications channel. “Report,” he stated simply.

    “Autobot Ratchet reporting. Mission unsuccessful. Awaiting further instructions,” the surly sounding voice of the would-be medic came over the link.

    All was quiet as the matter was being considered. There was no more the Autobots could do on their own, and the situation had already surpassed their routine mission protocols.

    “Hold your position,” Soundwave stated, then switched the channel to temporary stand-by. He addressed the others in the room. “I advise a full scale alert. Dispatch a security team to the area.”

    Vector Prime gave them a nod of approval, and Shockwave confirmed. “Agreed.”

    Soundwave reopened the channel. “Stand by. Prepare to receive assistance.”

    “Affirmative,” came the reply, before the link was closed.


    Autobots! The Liege thought disgustedly, when he realized what the security monitors had picked up.

    He motioned for Megatron to view the monitor images displayed, thanks to the hidden surveillance equipment he had had installed right around the perimeter of the secret post. Nothing would enter or exit his complex without his knowledge.

    Now was the perfect opportunity to give this Autobot under his command the chance to be of some real use.

    “Proceed to Sector 27 – intercept those Autobots. Bring them to me!” He ordered.

    “Yes, Liege,” Megatron replied, and proceeded to leave the Communications Center. Sector 27 was a few levels down. Near the Liege’s personal quarters, to be exact, where he was first awakened.

    The Liege kept a very close watch on his underling’s every move. Somehow, he still did not trust him. He did not trust any Autobot for that matter, and never would. Pathetic creatures that they were.

    He reconsidered and began to follow the Autobot.


    Megatron approached the Autobots with a little reservation, and curiosity. There were two of them, and neither of them gave any reaction as he entered Sector 27 through a sliding wall panel. He did not wish to harm them, despite his superior’s intentions.

    The first Autobot was obviously designed to be repair personnel - a medic. He was predominantly white, with red crosses on his upper arms, which signified his specialty. A view screen was embedded in his chest that no doubt served many useful functions, and the familiar Autobot insignia was placed directly underneath it. He had a white helm with a predominant black chevron at the front.

    The Autobot next to him was very similar in design, except for a few differences. He was predominantly red, lacked medic insignia, and his red helm was without adornment. It was difficult to tell by appearance only what his specialty was supposed to be.

    Just as Megatron was about to address them, the white one spoke up first, turning to face him.

    “Autobot 40-04-12, codename: Megatron. You are required to proceed immediately to Autobot headquarters.”

    Interesting, Megatron thought. Had he been like this Autobot before his awakening, so stoic and lifeless?

    Megatron was about to reply, when the familiar voice of his commanding officer intervened from behind him. Megatron hadn’t realized he had been followed.

    “Belay that order, Autobot,” Liege Maximo sauntered up to the Autobots, and looked down upon them. “Megatron is going nowhere.” He emphasized the name. He seemed to be enjoying this very much – he couldn’t wait for his first Autobot termination, no doubt.

    The red robot spoke next. “Unable to comply. Direct orders from Autobot headquarters state –”

    The Liege smirked contemptuously, and cut in, not allowing the Autobot to complete his sentence. “Very well, have it your way, then.”

    A devilish grin showed upon his merciless features, as he removed a laser weapon from out of a subspace pocket and pointed it at the red protoform.

    A few moments were all it took. It happened so unexpectedly that Megatron had had no time to react, let alone to prevent it.

    The charred remains of the former Autobot lay on the floor, its head unrecognizable, and its last circuit impulses making its body twitch. It was not salvageable. The powerful blast from the weapon had made the atmosphere crackle with ionization around them, and then a deadly silence permeated the room.

    A cold chill seemed to run through Megatron’s internal systems as he tried to make sense of what he had just witnessed: the termination of a cybernetic unit – of a potential life form. But to The Liege, this was all a game, and he appeared unperturbed by his own ghastly action.

    “Now, would you care to repeat that order, Autobot?” The Liege had turned to the remaining white protoform, and was addressing it.

    It simply stood there for a moment, not responding. The sudden termination of his double did not seem to have affected him. But it did comprehend the imminent danger it was in, having computed the most likely odds of his survival. They were not good.

    The Liege Maximo handed his weapon over to Megatron. “Now it’s your turn. Destroy this Autobot.”

    Megatron hesitated, looking at the laser weapon in the tyrant’s hand. His processor was still trying to fathom the consequences of the recent termination. He did not want the same thing to happen to him. The remains of Hardtop had now fully ceased functioning, and lay deathly still at their feet. Black scorch marks were etched on the ruined chassis and surrounding floor panels as undeniable evidence of its grim fate. Silence momentarily ensued.

    “That is an order. Do it now.” It was obvious that The Liege was beginning to grow impatient, and Megatron realized that he had to make a decision, and soon.

    “This Autobot has done nothing wrong. I do not understand why you wish for me to terminate it.” At least that may buy him, and the remaining Autobot, some more time.

    “It is not your place to question orders! Now proceed, Autobot scum, or it will be you to have his inner circuitry incinerated beyond recognition!”

    Megatron raised the weapon and pointed it at Ratchet. He had run out of time and did not appear to have any choice.


    “What in the flaming name of Primus is going on...?”

    Wheeljack could barely believe the view screen display in front of him. A warning light had blinked at them incessantly from the monitoring station only a cycle ago; it indicated a malfunction somewhere along the closed circuit. One of the Autobots’ live feed - Hardtop’s - had gone down. All attempts to revive the link were proving futile.

    On the display, all he could pick up was static – no audio, no visual, nothing.

    He quickly brought up Ratchet’s feed. It showed a code blue alert, silently being broadcast across all receiving frequencies. Code blue – that was serious. That meant an immediate threat was in the vicinity; a threat of the most dangerous caliber. The signal was being sent silently as a precaution. It meant that Ratchet was operating his com link at the most rudimentary level, to avoid unnecessary interception. It also meant that the visual channel would be cut off to minimize the possibility of a security breach.

    However, the backup team had already been dispatched, and they would be arriving in only a few cycles. There was nothing more the team at Iacon could do now, except watch and wait.


    Sentinel did not particularly like being sent on these kinds of missions, but regardless he would perform his duties to the best of his capabilities, primarily for the benefit of Cybertron, and the Transformer race. He was always much happier being the one giving orders, instead of the one carrying them out.

    Sentinel’s crew was the only one currently available for immediate dispatch, the urgent request from Iacon having been sent to him. At least the task this time was simple enough: to locate and secure two Autobots, maybe three if they were lucky. He lead his team now, a group of five mechs who specialized in various military ground operations and infiltration, towards the transportation pad that would take them directly outside Sector 27, which was located on the other side of Cybertron.

    He had visited Polyhex quite a few times before in his travels, and knew that it was a city as deep and mysterious as any labyrinth he had ever encountered. He much preferred Iacon.

    He boarded the pad with his crew, and after a few astro-seconds, they disappeared.


    To be continued...
  2. Ramrider

    Ramrider TF Art Lad

    Aug 2, 2004
    Trophy Points:
    You know, when I first read your preamble, I got that 'oh no' feeling I often do with fanfics that try to completely reboot the Transformers and essentially turn it into something else. But this is actually really well-written, and it looks like an interesting restart to the universe.

    I think I'll be keeping tabs on this one... ;) 
  3. Crystine

    Crystine Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2008
    News Credits:
    Trophy Points:
    Thanks! :) 

    Well in that case, I had better post the second half of this for you to read.

    So now, the conclusion...




    After a pause, Megatron lowered the weapon.

    “No. I will not do this. It is wrong.” He knew he was risking his life this way, but he had made his decision, and he would stick with it.

    “ARGH!” The Liege was visibly filled with rage. “You have a lot to learn, Autobot! You are not worthy of leader class!” He reached out his hand and grabbed the weapon from him. “Giving life to these Autobots is wrong!” Angrily, The Dark One’s prodigy turned and pointed the laser blaster at Ratchet. “Die, Autobot!”

    This time, Megatron preempted his next move.

    As The Liege was about to fire, he was distracted by a sudden command. “Stop!”

    Before The Liege had had a chance to realize that it was his own underling that had given him a command, it was too late. That split nano-klik was all Megatron had needed to charge at him, successfully knocking the weapon out of his hand and taking him by surprise.

    “I knew giving life to an Autobot was a mistake! You will pay for this!” No sooner had he said this, The Liege lunged toward Megatron in a violent fury. One stroke of his mighty arm knocked Megatron to the floor with unexpected force.

    The Liege backed up, observing his defeated insubordinate sprawled across the floor, apparently knocked offline. He would punish him later, he thought, but for now, he needed to take care of some unfinished business.

    He proceeded to retrieve the weapon from the floor, and in so doing turned in the other direction. As he did so, Megatron, who had survived his attack and was very much still online, saw his window of opportunity. He had no time to spare as he picked himself up off the floor and lunged at his superior again, this time with more determination and strength of will than before.

    The Liege was tackled to the ground by a mech almost half his size. For a few moments they fought, grappling and attempting to throw the other off. Then, in a skillfully executed maneuver, Megatron managed to seize the weapon from The Liege by using a short blast of his fusion cannon, hitting the giant warrior directly in one of his optic sensors. In a startled and agonized cry, he had released the gun from his grasp.

    But The Liege would not be defeated so easily, and Megatron would have been mercilessly destroyed by now, ripped apart with bare hands, had it not been for the sound of The Liege’s personal surveillance system, as it conveyed its warning of an approaching party. A security team from Iacon, he guessed, would have undoubtedly been deployed by now in search of their Autobots.

    The Liege would have easily destroyed not only this wretched Autobot, but any other Cybertronians who would dare to try and stop him. He was afraid of nothing and no one, and would have greatly enjoyed terminating them all, with relish.

    But unfortunately, there were more important issues at hand, such as protecting the identity of the secret base that he was constructing. It was too early to be discovered now, and he hadn’t much time before friends of these Autobots came to their pathetic rescue.

    He retracted back into the shadows and disappeared through an access panel, which sealed itself shut, leaving behind no trace of its existence. The walls here were impenetrable, and as long as he hadn’t been seen, the base would be safe. And even if it wasn’t, he was almost ready to launch a full scale attack anyway, with Iacon being the first target.

    Megatron stood there motionless, unable to follow The Liege back into his underground base.

    Then, not a moment too soon, another panel in the wall opened, a visible one, and a group of five mechs appeared, pouring into the space around him.

    “Freeze! Drop your weapon!” He heard from one of the new arrivals, probably the team leader, who had his shoulder cannon pointed directly at him. “I said drop your weapon, now!”

    Megatron realized he still had the laser weapon in his hand. He dropped it immediately. He was surrounded now with no chance of escape.

    The last thing he remembered was the sharp sting of an immobilizer as it was plunged into his neck.


    “You have failed me, Maximo.”

    The Dark One’s words echoed within the darkness of his abode. Maximo was turned away from him as he considered his own defense.

    “Forgive me, Mighty One. It appears that the Autobot overcame his new programming.” Short, sharp, and to the point. He did not want to arouse his Master’s anger anymore than necessary.

    When The Dark One gave no reply, he continued. “The Autobots are useless; I would not recommend awakening another. There is no guarantee of their loyalty.”

    The Master pondered this information carefully. If it were true, he would have to implement a slight change in plans.

    “Very well, then. They shall all be destroyed.” The Master stepped forward out of the shadows a little to confront his second-in-command. “But first, I must create my own army of loyal followers. With the Key now in my possession, we will use it to awaken those from my very own Creation Pit - as you were.”

    “Very wise, Master.” Now that was a plan that he genuinely liked. Anything that had to do with crushing the inferior Autobots into the ground, he would do willingly.

    “Proceed with the plan. Oh, and, find the Autobot who betrayed you and terminate him. He knows too much.”

    An evil smirk crossed The Liege’s facial features. “As you command.” He gave a salutary bow and left.

    The Dark One receded back into the shadows. Not having the Autobots on his side would be unfortunate, since they were far superior in construction than his own drones. The Liege had been the exception; the more drones he had created from his own Pit, the more inferior in strength and intelligence they seemed to become. But for the moment, he had created enough of them to sustain an army, and that would have to do. If he couldn’t turn the Autobots to his cause, he would take them by force. One by one, he would find them, awaken them, torture them, and then finally kill them, but not before extracting their primary processors and reusing them for his own drones.


    Megatron sat in his empty containment cell, not having spoken a word since he was reactivated. He had no idea where he was, or what would become of him. He had been waiting here for what seemed like mega cycles, maybe even orns. He didn’t know anymore; he had lost track of time.

    Absorbed in thought, he replayed the events of the first few quartecs of his life over and over again in his mind, when he heard sounds in the distance; sounds of someone approaching. No, not one, but two – maybe more. They were probably coming for him. Maybe that was a good thing, maybe it wasn’t. He would find out soon enough. Anything was better than being isolated in a small, pitch black cell, he supposed.

    Bright lights invaded the cubicle, and he looked away for an instant to avoid the harsh glow, giving his optic sensors adequate time to adjust.

    He slowly turned his head to look up at his captors. He recognized the one in the middle, standing closest to him. The heavily armored leader of the small military team was flanked on both sides by two of his foot soldiers. “I... remember you,” he said simply, quietly, but not unnerved by the other’s presence.

    The cell was fully contained on all sides, with a solid door directly in front of him. Other than the bench he sat upon, it was completely empty.

    Sentinel stepped forward a little, his rifle drawn. He would take no backtalk from a prisoner. “Quiet, Autobot. In case you are not aware, you will do exactly as I tell you, or I can promise you, by Primus you will be terminated – but not before I’ve had my fun with you.”

    Megatron regarded him with disdain. He was not about to give any reply to that, but then reconsidered. “On whose authority?” He said, calmly but resolutely, showing no apprehension.

    “Slagging son of Unicron himself!” Sentinel swore, giving reference to their mythical anti-god. He reached his hand towards the prisoner, grabbed him by the throat and slammed his back to the wall. “You have no right to ask such questions! Or any questions for that matter! Do you hear me? You will speak only when told!” This was standard technique used upon prisoners to subdue them, as Sentinel had learned in his early days at the Academy. If this prisoner wanted to be tough, then he would give him tough. He had no tolerance for killers; Autobot or otherwise.

    Megatron did not try to defend himself, or throw his attacker off. Instead he said nothing, until slowly Sentinel released his grip.

    Megatron knew he could match him in a battle, however now was neither the time nor the place. But he would not forget him.

    Sentinel smirked; satisfied that he had given the prisoner enough reason not to attempt anything stupid. “Someone will probably come for you shortly. For your sake, I hope they carry out your termination as quickly as possible.”

    And with that, he left the cell, leaving Megatron alone in the darkness once more.


    Shockwave rarely outwardly displayed any type of emotion, either in tone or in demeanor. Then again, he was an easily misunderstood mech, since he did not have the usual facial features of most of the other mechs.

    On this particular occasion, however, he was positively furious. “Locate his position. I wish to speak with him, now,” was all he said.

    Soundwave, probably more than anyone else, understood what his friend was feeling. He had, after all, worked with him and known him for the longest time. He pressed a few buttons on the control console in front of him, and opened up a channel.

    “Sentinel, this is Soundwave. Respond.” The line was silent, and then suddenly a voice came through, loud and clear.

    “Sentinel here.”

    “Report to headquarters at once,” Soundwave commanded.

    “What’s this about?” Sentinel liked to know what he was getting into at all times. He was well known for his ‘subtle’ disregard for authority. Unless, of course, he was the one giving the orders.

    Soundwave hesitated to give him an answer. He didn’t need to. Shockwave interjected.

    “This is Shockwave. I am requesting you make your way to Autobot headquarters without delay. I wish to speak with you.” Shockwave’s tone was curt, displeased. That’s all the information he was prepared to give, for now.

    Sentinel was not as afraid of Shockwave as he should have been. He could tell that the purple mech was displeased, and no doubt it was directed at him, probably in regards to the prisoner. He thought carefully before responding. “Be there shortly,” he said, and severed the link. Slagger.


    He needed a few cycles alone. Leaving his post to Soundwave, he made his way to his personal quarters, located one level above. “Soundwave, inform me once he’s arrived. I’ll be in my quarters.”

    “Affirmative,” his friend acknowledged.

    “Thank you,” and with that he walked out.

    He realized he had not recharged for a couple of cycles, and his power levels were running low. Yet, he could not allow himself to rest now; there was still the business with Sentinel to sort out. He had to find out where his Autobot was. The one named Ratchet had been safely returned, however Sentinel had decided to take his own initiative and deal with Megatron himself. Apparently the Autobot in question had turned against his programming, and had destroyed one of his own. The demise of Hardtop was... most unfortunate, but he could do nothing about that now.

    The door to his quarters slid open, and he entered the room. He went directly to his recharge berth and lay down. He placed himself in standby mode to conserve power; in this way he could remain awake.

    Not yet certain how exactly he would deal with Sentinel, he knew he must find out where he was keeping Megatron. And if the accusations against the Autobot indeed turned out to be true, he would have to deal with that, as well.

    He sincerely hoped that that would not be the case. He would be severely disappointed if it was proven beyond all doubt that the Autobot – Megatron – had terminated Hardtop willingly and freely, and not for the result of some serious malfunction, possible if he had been tampered with. So far there was no solid evidence to suggest this was the case. However, if it turned out to be so, there was only one possible explanation that he could think of: Megatron’s programming had not only been tampered with, but he had been given life, awakened with the stolen Key.

    He recalled the day many eons ago when he had created the first Autobots; he had primarily designed and built them himself. Megatron had been the first one; he was taller, bigger and stronger than all the others. He was a proud example of a successful undertaking. The other Autobots that followed did not disappoint either, and in the span of many hundreds of thousands of stellar cycles, they had proven to be more useful and efficient than he had ever expected. Yes, he was rather fond of them. And he didn’t like some self-appointed champion like Sentinel to take over his rightful role as their protector and overseer, and certainly not make any decisions for them.

    But more than that, he wanted his dream to become a reality. He wanted to see his very own creations be given life, given sentience. He had waited a long time for that opportunity. He wanted that, he supposed, more than anything.

    Approximately five breems went by before his thoughts were interrupted by Soundwave’s incoming message.

    “Sentinel is here to see you.”

    “Thank you, Soundwave. I’ll be there in a few moments.” He was not looking forward to this part.

    He stood up from where he lay, and walked towards the door. It automatically slid open, and he stepped out into the hallway.


    Sentinel stood in the Center’s common, a large area of the complex that was occupied by many mechs continually coming and going, attending to their day to day business. The perfect place for a meeting, he thought. He was not prepared to go any further into the Command Center. He had to protect himself somehow, and a place like this provided him a perfect cover, if he should ever need it. Not that he had anything to worry about; he’d done nothing wrong.

    “Sentinel,” a voice from behind him summoned. Damn, he was facing the wrong way.

    The self-confessed hero turned around to face the owner of the voice. Shockwave stood before him, the tall figure looming over his own.

    Sentinel took a few steps back. “You wanted to see me.”

    “Yes,” Shockwave began. A slight pause and then he continued. “You are in possession of the Autobot Megatron, is this correct?”

    Sentinel regarded him defiantly. He didn’t like the Commander in Charge, nor did he appreciate the tone of voice he was using.

    “Answer me. Are you in possession of the Autobot Megatron?” Shockwave repeated, his patience already wearing thin.

    “Yeah, I am.”

    Shockwave expected something more, but that was all Sentinel gave him. “I want him returned, now.”

    Of course he did. Sentinel had expected this. He guessed it had been fun while it lasted, although he still had many more plans for the Autobot prisoner that he wished he could have the chance to carry out.

    “Sure,” Sentinel said simply, and then turned to leave.

    “Wait!” Shockwave raised his voice.

    Sentinel turned back to face him. He said nothing; but only waited for the other to continue.

    Shockwave would have sighed in exasperation, but he had to stay in control. “Where is he?” Primus, did he have to spell it out?

    Sentinel gave a smirk, and then replied casually. “Somewhere in the cell blocks of Sector B17.” He frankly didn’t give a damn what happened to the prisoner now. He could rot in his cell for all he cared.

    “Take me to him,” Shockwave ordered.

    A small snicker escaped Sentinel’s mouth. “Go get him yourself,” and with that, he turned to go, satisfied that the current conversation was over.

    Shockwave had had enough. He raised his weapon arm, and fired at Sentinel, hitting him squarely in the back. Then without hesitation, he strode over, bent down towards the fallen mech, grabbed him by the back of his neck, and easily dragged him up off his feet with his powerful arm.

    The many passersby in the room stopped to observe what all the commotion was about. However, no one dared get in the way.

    Shockwave charged through the crowd, the other mech still in his grasp. Then, Sentinel’s face was slammed hard against a wall.

    Shockwave was angry. “I won’t ask you again. You will take me to him, now.” Shockwave hardly noticed the onlookers, who had made plenty of room for them as he had charged forward.

    Sentinel, still functioning, could hardly manage to make a sound with his vocal unit, but he tried his best nevertheless. He had perhaps underestimated the commanding officer. “Ahh... y-y-ess... of course,” he stammered.

    Shockwave held him in that position for what seemed like cycles. He had to make sure his authority would not be undermined again. Sentinel, meanwhile, struggled helplessly against his grasp.

    “If you have damaged him in any way, Sentinel, I will personally see to it that you are handed over to the authorities on Verenus 9,” Shockwave threatened, all too calmly for a mech who was ready to throw him into the smelting pool at a moment’s notice.

    Oh, Primus help him. Verenus 9 was the worst planetary penitentiary known in existence; a virtual hellhole that was constantly filled with the agonized screams and cries of the misfortunate condemned, doomed to experience the unfathomable tortures of a living hell for the rest of their existence. He would never survive.

    “Please... I will take you to him... let me go...” He begged pathetically.

    Finally, Shockwave released his grip, but slowly. Sentinel dropped to the floor, wheezing and sputtering, his air intake systems working in overdrive. Fresh energon spilt from where his face had impacted the wall. It had left an impressive gash.

    While he gradually recomposed himself, Shockwave simply turned and left.


    Making his way through the underground passageways, Sentinel led the accompanying team to the cell blocks without speaking a word. He was not about to elicit the wrath of Iacon’s Chief Commander for a second time.

    The company consisted of himself, Shockwave, the chief engineer Wheeljack and one of his assistants, and a scout by the name of Breakline, as well as two combat droids. Sentinel’s own team had been purposely left behind.

    The area of Cybertron that they were about to enter was a gloomy, rarely accessed place, located directly underneath Polyhex’s neighboring suburb of Paradron. The cell blocks themselves were generally unmonitored, having been abandoned shortly after the end of the Quintesson War hundreds of vorns previously. Even now, most prisoners that had probably been left to die here so long ago still had their remains waiting to be discovered in some of the deepest cells. It was the perfect place if you wanted to hide someone without fear of their immediate discovery.

    “I sure wouldn’t want to be spending any time down here,” Breakline commented, breaking the silence. His visual and audio receptors were on full alert, and they could sense the tangible echo of fear that permeated the cell block’s infrastructure.

    No one replied, but instead they continued on, the tension currently being felt by all members of the party penetrating the atmosphere around them. Who knew what they would find, and if Sentinel was telling the truth – which for his sake he had better be – there was no way of knowing what this Megatron, upon meeting them, would do. They were all pretty sure that he needed to be deactivated as soon as possible, that his apparent malfunction had rendered him dangerous and unstable. All of them that is, except for Shockwave – he hoped otherwise.

    After walking non-stop for almost four breems through the darkened tunnels of the labyrinth, Sentinel finally came to a stop in front of a sealed access way. He waited until the others were ready and then slowly pointed at the door in front of them.

    “He’s in there,” was all he said, not bothering to open the door.

    Shockwave pushed past him, not expecting any more help from the military team leader. The access way appeared to be unsecured, which meant that anyone from the outside could open it. He wasted no time in activating the control panel beside it. The door to the cell slid open, and the automatic lighting system flickered to life.

    Upon seeing the accused prisoner, Shockwave stood in a moment of silence, gazing upon him. He could see that it was definitely the Autobot he had been looking for – the unmistakable silver color and design of his exterior, the black cannon, the red Autobot insignia – told him that. But now there was something else, something different about his countenance that was unusual, even as the Autobot himself did not bother to look up at his visitors as they entered the cell.

    Shockwave began to suspect that perhaps he was completely drained of energy, and in stasis lock, but that concern was quickly dissipated as the Autobot Megatron’s head tilted slightly upwards, soft blue-green optics wearily gazing upon them.

    Megatron observed the newcomers. He had never seen them before, at least not that he could remember. His memories of the past solar cycle’s events were beginning to feel a little fragmented. Then again, not having had the chance to recharge at all would do that to a mech. He did not speak, but instead waited for one of them to make an introduction.

    The tall, purple mech, who appeared to be the leader of the group, stepped towards him cautiously. The only member of the party he had a memory of was the one currently standing outside his cell, apparently taking a background role in his imminent, upcoming interrogation and torture, no doubt.

    “Careful, Shockwave, I wouldn’t get any closer,” the mech behind the purple one warned in alarm. He had no visible mouth to speak of, and two panels on either side of his head lit up as he spoke.

    Shockwave simply turned towards Wheeljack in a quick gesture, as if to say it would be alright, and then turned back to Megatron.

    “I am Shockwave,” he began, his optic flashing as he did so, introducing himself as if the Autobot were alive. He had to be – either that or it was malfunctioning – and he much preferred to believe the former.

    Megatron watched him for a long while, and Shockwave decided to allow him the time to speak.

    “What do you want with me?” Megatron finally asked. Weariness and defeat were apparent in his tone.

    “I...” Shockwave began, then reconsidered. “...I... wish to know what happened to you,” he finally stated.

    “What happened to me? Even if I told you, would it make any difference?” Megatron lowered his head again.

    As the leader class Autobot spoke, Shockwave observed him carefully, intrigued at the definite change in appearance that was undeniably the result of a former lifeless being becoming suddenly and miraculously imbued with life. Other than his original body and design, everything else about him seemed to have changed. His face, his movements, the way he spoke – he was real.

    Shockwave realized that this Autobot must have thought that he was a prisoner, held here against his will. If it weren’t for Sentinel’s interference, he would certainly not have been.

    “You will not be harmed,” Shockwave reassured him.

    Megatron trusted this mech somehow, despite his better judgment; he had so far no reason to trust anyone, if he was to go by his past experiences.

    “It appears that I am... alive,” Megatron said, as if hardly believing the fact himself.

    “Yes, yes it certainly appears that you are,” Shockwave said, trying not to give away too much of his excitement.

    Megatron continued. “I was activated by Liege Maximo with the Key to Vector Sigma... he altered my programming to serve him, however his intentions were less than honorable and so I turned against his leadership.”

    The audience in the small cell stood quiet as they listened to his retelling, intrigued. Only Sentinel remained skeptical.

    Shockwave had never heard of Liege Maximo; however he decided to save that question for later, and instead allowed Megatron to continue.

    “I... did not feel that I belonged to him, although I am curious how I came to be.”

    Wheeljack, who had meanwhile run a diagnostics scan on the Autobot with a handheld device, looked over at Shockwave when it began to bleep. “Ah... Shockwave, I hate to break up the reunion, but if you want his memory module to retain its integrity, we’ve gotta get him back to the repair bay, now.”

    “Very well,” Shockwave confirmed. He looked at Megatron. “I need you to come with us.”

    “Where are we going?” Megatron knew he had no choice but to do as he was instructed, however he decided to ask the question anyway. Were they going to take him to the repair bay at Polyhex? And what would happen to him after that?

    Shockwave hesitated before giving a reply, thinking it over. “Home,” he said.


    Perceptor studied the offlined Autobot, who lay on a repair berth in front of him, carefully and with a concentrated curiosity. So absorbed was he in his analysis that he hadn’t noticed the crowd of onlookers observing them from the other side of the berth.

    “Is it true?” Vector Prime asked, startling him from his work. Perceptor looked up.

    “Oh, I didn’t notice you there, you must excuse me,” he replied courteously, and put down his instruments. “If you are referring to this Autobot’s apparent awakening, then yes, it is indeed true.”

    Alpha Trion stood next to Vector Prime, and sought further confirmation to the news they had just received from the leading scientist. “Are you sure?”

    “I am absolutely sure, Alpha Trion; there is absolutely no doubt. He indeed possesses a spark. It has already assimilated his primary programs, and his personality matrix appears to be utilizing at one hundred percent capacity,” Perceptor explained. His findings were indeed awesome – there was no better word to describe it. The assimilation process had taken much less time than anyone had anticipated.

    “Fascinating...” Alpha Trion, or Alpha Three as he was sometimes known, expressed everyone’s sentiments of awe. “Absolutely fascinating. The Key works!”

    “Don’t jump to conclusions, Aye Three. We don’t know yet whether we can trust him, or if his systems are fully stable,” Wheeljack countered.

    “Well, we will find out soon enough. Perceptor, is it safe to reactivate him?” Vector asked.

    Perceptor glanced at him, then at Shockwave and Soundwave, who were also present. He seemed to have their approval. “Yes, I believe that it is safe enough. The damage to his internal systems has been repaired, and his vitals appear to be stable. I can’t speak for his higher functioning unfortunately; that can only be determined once he has regained consciousness.”

    “Do it,” Vector Prime stated.

    Perceptor did as was requested, and in a few short moments, Megatron reawakened. His optic sensors flickered and came to life. He slowly sat up as he took in his new surroundings. A repair bay of some sort, yes, now he remembered. And the mechs that stood around him; he recalled that some of them had been part of the team who had come to find him in the cell blocks earlier – they had not deceived him – yet. He noticed the military team leader was not present.

    The larger, mostly silver and magenta Cybertronian warrior held Megatron’s attention as he spoke to him first. “This Liege... Maximo you spoke of, is he the same that took the Key?”

    Megatron took a few moments to recall what Vector Prime was referring to, and confirmed their suspicions. “He has the Key in his possession.”

    “What else do you know about him?”

    “I am unsure of how he attained it. He... serves another; I do not know his name.”

    “You said you turned against him... why did you do this?” Alpha Trion wanted to know.

    Megatron regarded the non-transforming mech with a steady gaze. “Liege Maximo terminated one of the Autobots and then ordered me to do the same to another.” He faltered for a moment, but then continued. He was unsure whether or not they would believe him. “I refused... I was an Autobot like them too, before I... was awakened... was I not?”

    “Yes... indeed you were,” Vector Prime confirmed for him.

    “Will you take us to him?” Shockwave said, not wanting to wait longer than he needed to. The retrieval and safeguarding of the Key was now paramount.


    “Wait,” the chief engineer intervened. “He can’t be trusted; I say we run some more tests on him first, just to be sure.”

    “That is not required: he speaks the truth,” Soundwave responded.

    “Good. We leave immediately,” Shockwave’s decision was final.


    “Jhiaxus! Report to me at once,” The Liege ordered over the com system.

    “Yes, Liege,” came the prompt reply. Within a matter of astro-seconds, his next in command – and Megatron’s replacement – appeared in front of him.

    “I want you to run a special errand for me,” The Liege began. “I want you to find and destroy the Autobot Megatron.” The contempt at the mention of the name was obvious.

    “Yes, Liege.”

    “I will provide you with a team, fully armed, for your command.”

    “Yes, my Lord.”

    “Oh, and Jhiaxus? If you happen to capture him alive, I want him brought directly to me.” The Liege turned away from his former drone as he considered the enjoyable possibilities that that would bring.

    “Yes, my Lord.”

    “Do not fail me,” he concluded. The mech called Jhiaxus gave him a salutary bow and left the command post, ready to assemble his team and fulfill his duty.


    “Are you certain the underground base lies beyond this wall?” Vector Prime asked, studying the area surrounding them that was designated Sector 27.

    “I am certain,” Megatron answered him.

    “It is impenetrable,” Soundwave informed them. “We will need an alternative entrance.”

    “Hmm, perhaps not,” Vector Prime said as he considered.

    He pulled out his legendary sword and held it in front of him. It glowed brightly. “Stand back, everyone.”

    The others present all took a few steps back.

    Then, the sword began to glow even more brightly, until its entire length became like a bright blue torchlight. With one mighty swing, Vector Prime thrust the sword into the very center of the wall. It pierced a hole right through it, as though it were core plasma, malleable and soft. The sword held there, and the hole increased in size until it was large enough for all of them to walk through.

    Moving quickly, Shockwave stepped through first, followed by Megatron, Soundwave, and then another mech who was assigned to this mission for his expertise in undercover operations, and who was often hidden behind an invisibility shield. Vector Prime then walked through, releasing the sword as he did so. The hole in the wall closed up behind them, leaving no trace of their entrance.

    They found themselves within an unknown part of Polyhex. The dim lights fixed here and there along the walls and ceilings emitted an eerie blue glow. There was no one else to be found, and the echo from their footfalls was the only sound that broke through the dominating silence around them. They were in a vast antechamber that comprised of numerous exit ways, leading into other unknown parts of the complex.

    “Which way now?” Vector Prime said to no one in particular.

    “This way,” Megatron answered him, and proceeded to lead the way. He approached one of the exit ways, and they followed him through into another passageway. At the end of this, a sealed door greeted them, apparently another dead end.

    Megatron activated a small panel to the left, and the door slid open. They did not have much time before they would be confronted by this Liege Maximo and his security team, so they moved through as quickly as possible.

    What greeted them then was a vast underground city, occupied with various drones and transportation modules, all going about their various duties. They appeared to be basic, inferior units, primarily designed to be able to perform only one or two specified tasks. So far, either they had not yet been spotted, or they were not recognized as being a threat by the drones.

    In the center of the complex, directly ahead, stood a massive multi-tiered structure that consisted of perhaps ten or twelve levels. Each level had a rounded, smooth construction that helped to give the entire building the appearance of a large serpent creature coiled up along its length – not unlike the serpent machines from the Orion Nebula.

    Megatron pointed to the spiraling stronghold. “There,” he said.

    “We will take the–” Shockwave began, but was cut off by a fire blast from out of nowhere, aimed at him. It narrowly missed.

    “Take cover,” Vector Prime yelled, but the others had already moved out of the way of further blasts, ducking down behind a retaining wall.

    More blasts shot at them from beyond. From the angle and frequency of the blasts, Shockwave calculated that there were perhaps ten or eleven assailants, evenly distributed in a semi-arch maybe a few hundred meters from their position.

    The firing ceased, and Shockwave informed the others of his intent. “Cover me,” he said, and before the others had time to question him, he jumped out and over the barricade in pursuit of the assailants, with amazing agility and speed.

    The firing began again, this time given from both sides. Soundwave quickly took down two of the drones, with a precise charge of his concussion blaster.

    Vector Prime and Megatron each fought their own battles, also having tracked down the drones from their vantage posts and disabling them. Vector Prime used his gauss cannon, less effective without his transformation, but still enough to disarm the opponents.

    A few meters away, Shockwave was battling the mech in charge of the drone team. There was a momentary ceasing of fire as the two main combatants paused to survey the other.

    Jhiaxus realized most of his team of twelve drones had been defeated far too easily. Pathetic drone army! He would not need them anymore then; he would just have to finish the job himself.

    Perhaps he had underestimated his opponents, but nevertheless he was determined to take them all, one by one. He quickly counted four; that should not be too difficult a task. Like his superior, he reveled in the merciless destruction of lesser beings.

    “Ah, Commander Shockwave,” he sneered, demonstrating to the other that he knew his name and title. “Prepare to be terminated!”

    Jhiaxus charged at him with full force, and they both tumbled to the ground, locked in sudden combat. All around them, drones continued with their oblivious existence, unaware of the current conflict.

    “You... will... not... prevail!” Shockwave told Jhiaxus as they continued to fight.
    Jhiaxus was slightly larger than him, but only by a little. He could still be defeated. He would be defeated.

    Jhiaxus roared a mighty cry of rage, lifting himself up and pinning Shockwave underneath him. One fought against the other with brute strength, neither of them willing to give.

    Then another, unfamiliar voice rang out across the multiplex. “Shockwave!”

    The fighting pair both turned their heads upward towards the sound of the voice. Standing on the ledge of the first snakelike tier upon the stronghold was a huge warrior, the likes of which Shockwave had never seen before. In the blink of an optic, Shockwave pushed Jhiaxus off him, taking a well timed opportunity made possible by his opponent’s momentary distraction.

    Jhiaxus rolled across the ground, but picked himself up quickly in a smoothly executed move. Standing face to face, Jhiaxus now waited for him to make the next move, ready to spring at his hated opponent like a feline beast-mech.

    Soundwave, Megatron and Vector Prime had just arrived on the scene, after having successfully defeated Jhiaxus’ army of drones. They, too, now saw the looming figure above them, safe on the landing.

    “It is he, The Liege. I must stop him,” Megatron declared, starting to take off after him.

    “Wait! You cannot battle him alone,” Vector Prime warned him.

    It was indeed The Liege Maximo standing above them, watching his soldiers do battle. He expected the drones to be defeated; they had only been a minor diversion, but he had expected a little more of Jhiaxus.

    He held out his hand, and allowed them to see the object in his grasp. It was the Key to Vector Sigma, its golden metal glinting at them like a strong beacon.

    “Is this what you came for?” Liege Maximo asked them from his elated position. He was leering, baiting them.

    “It is The Key! We must retrieve it at any cost!” Shockwave yelled out to the others. Then, when he looked back up, The Liege was gone, leaving an empty space where he had stood only a moment ago.

    “I will retrieve it,” Megatron stated, and no sooner had he done so than he disappeared, gone in pursuit of The Liege and The Key.

    But there was no time to worry about him now; they still had Jhiaxus to deal with.

    “Shockwave, watch out!” Vector Prime warned his friend.

    Jhiaxus had, in the meantime, unveiled a large pulse cannon that he had been saving for this momentous occasion. It was pointed directly at the Cybertronian Chief Commander.

    He was about to fire, which would no doubt have completely blown his enemy apart, when the most unexpected thing happened, much to the relief of Shockwave and his team.

    Jhiaxus, for no apparent reason, suddenly collapsed to the ground, no explanation - as if he had just been attacked with a specialized tranquilizer dart from behind. The cannon he had been holding lay beside him on the floor, and Soundwave quickly went to retrieve it. Shockwave stepped towards his fallen opponent, perplexed. He knelt beside the soldier to examine him.

    He was offline. He wondered how this had occurred, just in time to save his life no doubt, when he reached the most logical conclusion.

    “Mirage,” he uttered.

    Mirage, their infiltration specialist, appeared seemingly out of thin air to greet them. He gave a small chuckle and then said, “I'm here.”

    Shockwave looked up at the blue and white Cybertronian in gratitude. “Yes, and not a moment too soon.”


    Megatron pursued The Liege relentlessly, not wanting to allow him out of his sight. He swiftly jumped up and over the barrier to the first tier, where Liege Maximo had last been seen.

    “Stop!” Megatron yelled after him, still in pursuit.

    But The Liege was neither intimidated nor concerned by his pursuant; he was not afraid of anyone and wanted to play with the Autobot before he finally destroyed him and all of his pathetic friends.

    “Come closer, traitor!” He said from down a passageway, and then disappeared around the corner.

    But Megatron knew better than to be lured into a trap, and instead headed in the opposite direction, to try and take him by surprise. At least that way he had a chance. The fact that he knew his way around this place helped a little, too.

    Megatron went down a few empty passageways before coming to a stop at a sealed section. It was a dead end.

    “I should have destroyed you when I had the chance, Autobot!”

    He quickly turned around to see the massive Liege Maximo charge up his photon torpedo.

    “The Key does not belong to you,” Megatron said, while he tried to think of a way to outsmart the evil tyrant.

    A cold, hollow laugh emanated from somewhere deep within the monster. He held out the Key in one hand. “Oh, you mean this?”

    Before Megatron had a chance to snatch it away, the hand curled around the object.

    And before his very optics, The Key to Vector Sigma was crushed in his metallic hand; the golden fragments of its remains falling away from the scissor-like fingers. And there was nothing he could do to stop it. It was too late.

    “NO!” Megatron shouted in rage. But The Liege remained unperturbed, and Megatron had only a nano-klik to lunge out of the way as a photon torpedo was launched in his direction.

    It missed him, and a shower of debris rained down on the both of them as the torpedo tore the place apart.

    Megatron looked around him, picking himself up from the floor.

    “You don’t have a chance, Autobot,” The Liege taunted him, enjoying his dominance. The games were just about to begin.

    The Liege took a massive step towards him, and loomed over him menacingly.

    Megatron tried to get up and out of the way of the monster, but he was no match.

    Liege Maximo took pleasure in seeing his defeated opponent struggle against him, caught in his deadly grasp.

    The blade-like fingers were already beginning to cut into his fuel lines as he was slowly crushed alive.

    A few shots were then heard from behind them, and Megatron realized that his team had caught up to them. Hopefully, it wasn’t too late for them, as it had been for the Key.

    “Release him, now!” A voice commanded. Megatron realized it belonged to Vector Prime.

    The Liege, unaffected by the weapon blasts being fired at him, turned slowly, almost casually, to the team who had come to the Autobot’s rescue.

    He growled in contempt, stood up to his full height, and turned around to face them, Megatron still in his clutches.

    He threw the Autobot against the wall with a mighty throw. Megatron crashed to the floor, and then remained there, unmoving.

    Vector Prime wasted no time in wielding his sword, the Cyber Caliber, ready to transport them back to safety through a time-space portal. This was their only chance to get out of this place still intact with The Key, before The Liege destroyed them all. If Megatron had managed to retrieve the Key, that was.

    Megatron fought his own systems as they began to go into shut down. With the last ounces of strength that he had left within him, he slowly tried to lift himself up, but was too weak from the battle. He had to let the others know that their mission had failed – that the Key was gone forever, and that the only thing they could do now was to escape with their lives.

    “Vector Prime...”

    Vector Prime noticed that Megatron was still online, but barely.

    “Mission... has failed... The Key is destroyed,” he managed.


    No, it could not be true! Not after all he had worked for.

    “You will pay for this!” Shockwave threatened menacingly in The Liege’s direction.

    The Liege only laughed at him, mocking him. “And what will you do? You cannot stop me! It is over for you, pathetic creatures,” he snarled. “Bow before me now – pledge your allegiance to me, and I may spare your wretched lives,” he offered.

    “Never!” Shockwave responded, anger and frustration in his voice.

    “Very well, then. This Autobot shall be the first to die!” The Liege aimed another photon torpedo at Megatron, preparing to terminate him.

    “Vector Prime, prepare a transportation portal and activate it on my mark,” Soundwave said, unexpectedly.

    “What do you intend to do?” Vector Prime asked.

    “No time to explain.”

    Soundwave wasn’t sure how well his plan would work, but if he was going to help save his friends, he had better do something and now.

    Sending out a series of disruptor waves would only be useful for a few kliks, and while it may or may not affect a heavily armored mech-beast such as The Liege, it would definitely have an affect upon his own team members. But the way he saw it, there was no other way.

    The disruptor waves certainly did work – maybe even a little too well. They all began to slowly collapse where they stood, holding their hands to their audios in a futile attempt to block out the piercing frequency that invaded their processors.

    The Liege Maximo was taken by surprise, faltered, and staggered backwards. He gave a loud roar.

    Soundwave tried to focus his attack solely on their enemy. Wasting no time at all, Soundwave approached The Liege and then proceeded to employ his mind manipulation ability over him.

    It was draining him quickly, especially since the mind of this one was unusually strong. But he held his control just long enough to get what he needed. Then, he relinquished the disruptor waves, and his mind control over The Liege.

    “Now Vector Prime,” he instructed.

    Vector Prime had barely recovered from the unintentional attack, and acted as quickly as he could, opening up a portal for their escape route.

    Soundwave made his way over to Megatron and began to help him up, and Mirage, having also been close by, came over to help him. Shockwave also began to make his way towards the portal as he, too, recovered from Soundwave’s assault.

    Soundwave was the last mech to step through the time-space portal to safety.


    The beginning of The First Golden Age of Cybertron...

    When Shockwave learned what had happened during their recent escape from Polyhex, he was overjoyed. That was an emotion he had not felt since the first time he had activated his Autobots, a time that seemed like an eternity ago.

    Only this time it felt better. Far, far better. Thank Primus for Soundwave; he truly was an invaluable ally.

    As Soundwave had put it:

    “Liege Maximo deceptive – Key to Vector Sigma was still in subspace. I forced him to relinquish it.”

    It had been as simple as that. Looking back on it, he realized that The Key was too valuable for The Liege to have destroyed it just like that, without any thought. So he had crushed a fake duplicate, to try and deceive his enemies and make them believe that their cause was lost forever. Then he and his Master would have had free use of the Key to awaken as many drones as they wanted.

    Luckily, that would now not occur.

    Shockwave watched from one of the corners of Iacon Command Center’s recreation room, where he was seated at a table.

    There was an atmosphere of celebration all around him. In fact, the entire city of Iacon was celebrating the success of their mission, which had quickly become famous amongst Cybertron’s inhabitants, and was the talk of the suburbs.

    There was Megatron across the room, standing in a group with some other mechs, engaged in conversation, lively and in high spirits. He had recovered quickly from his battle with The Liege, thanks to Perceptor and Wheeljack, who had attended to all of their needed repairs.

    He noticed the new medic in training under Perceptor’s guidance, Ratchet, and next to him, his newly constructed clone brother, Ironhide, who was based on and designed in honor of his predecessor, Hardtop.

    And Autobot Jazz, living and sentient, was seemingly the life of the party as another group of Autobots and Cybertronians alike were gathered around him, while a red, blue and white seeker stood to his left.

    There were many new faces, Autobot faces that he had known for so long, yet would ironically be making their acquaintance all over again. They were not mere Autobots anymore – no, they were Autobot Cybertronians now. The Key to Vector Sigma had proven to be a great success.

    As for The Liege Maximo, Shockwave and his team would be monitoring Polyhex and the underground base very closely, but for now at least, there was no indication of any immediate threat.

    Shockwave sat back in his seat, and for the first time in a long while, allowed himself to relax.

    He was smiling inside.


    From somewhere in the vast regions of space...






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