notyourblueangel: (I stand alone)
Thundercracker ([personal profile] notyourblueangel) wrote in [community profile] re_alignment_logs2014-04-13 10:58 pm

Moving in Reverse [Narrative/Closed Log]

WHO: Thundercracker, Knock Out
WHERE: Knock Out's medbay
Backdated to the 5th following this thread
TC's finally gonna do that thing he's been telling himself he should just fragging do for over a year now . . . get the brands removed from his wings.
None.  Will update if needed.
NOTE: If only for my own reference, the convo with Four is here.  Also . . . L-LOL sorry, Lylith - this kind of turned into a wall-o'-text narrative to start things off.  OTL  (and PPS - Yes, I know Fracas is technically no longer here, but at this point in time, TC doesn't know that...)

Thundercracker stood outside of Solus's temple, staring up its sharp, ashy-black outer walls, wings twitching with the intense heat from the gorge.  He'd been in and out of this temple countless times - the medbay was here - but this time . . . this time he had to work up to it.  To going to the medbay.  To talking to Knock Out.

To finally doing what he'd been telling himself he was going to do for . . . how long now?  For about as long as he'd been in Haven.  If he were truly honest with himself, for countless vorns before that even, if only as a faint pipe-dream hidden down in the deepest recesses of his spark.

He'd come close once.  Twice.  The first time he'd started seriously considering it, Skywarp had shown up in Haven.  Not "his" Skywarp, but at least he felt he had someone he could turn to again, someone who shared at least similar enough experiences, something he'd not had since arriving.  It had been enough for a while to quiet the turmoil in his spark, but eventually, he'd started to air his thoughts and concerns to his fellow Seeker.  Skywarp wasn't overly happy, but he could see where Thundercracker was coming from.  In the end, he'd left the decision in Thundercracker's hands and promised not to harass him about it too much if he decided to renounce - even his own TC had always been disillusioned and malcontent.  Thundercracker had finally all but worked up the courage again.  But then . . . Four . . . Tarn had branded her.  The fragger had branded her!  And . . . she'd been so happy, feeling like she belonged to something bigger than herself, feeling like a person, feeling . . . closer to him

"He said that the Decepticons were about freedom of choice, and that they fought for equality. He said that the Decepticons were the harder path."

"He's right about it being the harder path, especially for some. It has been for me."

Thundercracker was old, easily one of the oldest among those here barring the First-Forged themselves.  And he'd been around since before there'd been a civil war tearing his people and his world asunder.  He remembered the inequalities and the malcontent with the ruling regime.  He remembered the grand plans, the underground campaigning, the master leader that his Megatron had once been.  He remembered joining the fledgling resistance shortly after graduating with honors from the military academy in Vos.  He was a soldier, one of the aerial elite, and he was going to help change their world.  The weak and cowardly merely bowed to the Powers-That-Be, not daring to oppose them.  Many of those in power were weak and cowardly as well, in their own way.  And the rest were expected to just accept what was handed to them.  But no longer.  What was truly needed, what was wanted, even the world itself was there for the taking for those with the courage and the anger to dare to take it.  Decepticons didn't bow and beg for what they needed, they simply claimed it and made good on that claim.

They'd not been out to create a dictatorship.  At least, not by Thundercracker's understanding.  But somewhere along the way, the idea of the Right of Rule had crept in, the right of the strong to dominate the weak.  Or maybe it had been there all along and Thundercracker had somehow missed it.  He no longer knew.  Nor cared.  It had happened, that was all that mattered.  The Decepticons had become ruthless conquerors, with Megatron intent on setting himself up as a dictator - first of Cybertron, then of the whole galaxy.  Megatron's soldiers ceased to be freedom fighters or even soldiers acting necessarily for a cause because they wanted to, but rather, more and more, were merely extensions of him, his weapons and tools for his own personal gains.  Because it meant wanton destruction, most were perfectly happy with this - their ranks had grown to include largely criminals, sociopaths, and the like.  War had lost its glory and its sense of purpose, becoming merely a vehicle for mounting body counts as his fellows mowed down enemies and innocents with equal abandon.  The Seeker had learned early on - the hard way - to trust his own companions even less than he might his enemies.  Not that he thought all that kindly of Autobots - they were still weak idealists in his mind, but at least he could say he could more or less trust their goody-two-shoes principles to not shoot him in the back as soon as he turned it.

He'd wanted out.  Dear Primus, he'd wanted out.  War with a purpose was one thing, but the endless, senseless fighting had worn him thin - not only with the Autobots but the ridiculous strife within his own faction.  The only thing that kept them all from tearing each other apart from the inside out was a collective terror of Megatron.  And it was a terror well-placed.  The Supreme Commander of the Decepticon forces was an immensely powerful force himself (regardless of what Starscream said).  His own fright of Megatron was one of the two singular things that kept Thundercracker firmly where he was expected to be (and what had that been about the weak and cowardly merely bowing to the Power-That-Be??).  The other was his trine . . . he would stay where his trine was, no matter the consequences or the personal cost.

Then . . . he found himself in Haven.

His trine wasn't here, and the closest approximation was one he rarely to never had any dealings with at all, even to this day.  Megatron hadn't been here either.  Members of both factions were here but . . . the war expressly was not.  Thundercracker had suddenly found himself with no allies, no leadership, no purpose . . . nothing.  For the first time in almost longer than he could remember, there was no one to direct him, no one to threaten him, no one to cow him into doing what they expected of him.  His time - his life - was his own as it had not been since before his days in the academy so many lifetimes ago.

It took him a long time to accept it, to quit waiting for the hammer to fall.  Or the fusion cannon to fire, as the case may be.

It had taken him a long time - probably too long, in others' views - for him to start venturing out . . . interacting with people without expecting to be attacked for who and what he was, seeking some kind of hobby or employment as a means of occupying his time.   He'd taken a position at the brand-new bar that Wing had helped build, serving as a bouncer.  After helping with the Glyphless mess - and proving himself at the same time - he joined the police force with the encouragement of Blurr, one of the very few friends he managed to make yet at the time . . . and an Autobot at that.

Friend.  That alone still blew his mind, that he had any, that he could have any.  It was something he'd all but given up when he joined the Decepticons.  He and his trinemates knew to trust no one outside of their own trine (and even that could be questionable as often as not).  He didn't have that advantage here, but what he did have . . . he still sometimes had a hard time accepting as real.  He still found himself questioning and half-expecting to be turned on, cast out, betrayed, abandoned.  But then he'd put names and faces on those fears and . . . they'd never hold up.  Once he thought of the people behind the ideas, he couldn't hold the belief that they'd just decide one day they were done with him.  Blurr, his first friend here . . . white-Megatron, Ventus, Rose, McCrane, Ravage, Fracas  . . . more recently Bulkhead, white-Starscream, Axel, maybe Knock Out and Skylynx.  Not to mention those who'd been here and since left.

Thundercracker had lost his nerve to wipe his brands as often as he'd decided to go through with it.  And that had been even before Megatron had come to Haven - the grey one, the powerful one, the one that reminded him far too much of his own, the one who . . . who terrified him as much as his own.  In all honesty, when Megatron arrived, Thundercracker had . . . well . . . panicked, pure and simple.  The mech had yet to truly try to force Thundercracker to do anything, or punish him for his choices in what he'd decided to do with himself here, but then . . . the Seeker had hardly given him real opportunity either. 

One of Solus's Acolytes came out to meet him, he'd been standing and staring for so long.  No . . . no, he was fine, he didn't need anything, he'd be going to the medbay, he just needed another moment.  Finally, getting the Acolyte to leave him alone, his gaze traveled back up the Temple, and then to the sky itself, his sparkright as a Seeker and the freedom it had always meant to him.  A shudder ran through him, his wings twitching with the thought of Megatron ripping them off for even considering what he was about to do.  He remembered Tarn's attempt to document and control any Decepticon who wished to renounce his loyalty to the faction, and Rose's promise that Tarn would not be allowed to keep anyone from doing so if he chose to.  He remembered Blurr and white-Megatron both promising that they had his back if Megatron - the grey one - ever tried to force Thundercracker to follow him or otherwise do anything to him.  He couldn't remember if McCrane had ever said anything similar, but if not, he felt sure the Earth-bot would back him up, regardless.  And others.  Maybe more than he thought, even, though that might be too hopeful.  But even a few were enough.

Thundercracker was tired.  Tired of living in fear.  Tired of being at someone's beck and call.  Tired of being merely a weapon to point.  Tired of the meaninglessness of war and the slaughter of innocents.  He was a soldier, not a murderer, fraggit!

"Four . . . I've helped to level whole cities. I've killed countless people, including innocents, in the name of the Decepticons."

He'd told Four that he wasn't a good person, something he still more or less believed.  He'd done too much.  He'd let himself be cajoled or cowed into doing too much.  She'd responded that she loved him the way he was.

What would you do now, little one, if you knew what I was here to do?

He thought she'd approve, actually, now that he thought of it.  She'd encourage him.  She'd always been so accepting like that.  He snorted a soft laugh just then, low and wry.  Here he was, an ancient Cybertronian, one of Megatron's ranking officers, an elite aerial combatant, looking for the permission of a tiny, sentient gardening glove.  He knew he should probably be disgusted with himself, but all he could feel was wry amusement.  And grief.  Primus, he missed her.  And Skywarp.  And others.  But he was here, and here he would stay if he had any choice in the matter.  Here, he could be himself again.  Here, he was free.

"Freedom and equality . . . our brand did mean those things. Once. A very long time ago."

If he truly wanted that, he had to reverse what he'd done.  He had to find the courage and the anger to once more stand up and find the power in himself to take what he truly wanted, what he needed.  Before, he'd had his trinemates with him.  Now, he felt alone, standing out here on the step of Solus's Temple.  But he wasn't.  Not really.  There were many at his back now, people he trusted, people he knew he was safe trusting.

Every horrific consequence he could think of played through his mind as he pulled his gaze from the sky back down to the doors of the temple.  Megatron raging at him, taking his wings, locking him away somewhere until he agreed to submit once more, beating him, playing on his claustrophobia...  Would this one, the grey one so like his own, do any of that?  He didn't know.  He didn't want to know.'t like he'd never been beaten and even tortured before.  And if he disappeared for any length of time, he knew there'd be people who would look for him.  If Megatron killed him, he'd either find himself waking up on the altar in Alpha Trion's Temple, or . . . or it would just all be over, period.  So really, what did he have to lose?  Versus what he could gain.  No...

What he would gain.

Wings hitched high, Thundercracker squared his shoulders, feeling the fear turn to anger, fueling his determination.  One step forward, another . . . another . . . he passed through the doors of the temple and wouldn't stop till he reached the medbay.

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