He woke with a gasp, surfacing from memories of flame and pain, clawing at his plating, his processor convinced that it still burned. That he still burned, broken upon a pyre from which there was no escape, an inferno in which only the strongest could survive.
The strongest, and the smallest, the least of all, far beneath the notice of the master of that nothing place. Left to cower and claw for scraps in the corners of a living circle of hell while his brothers spilled out their lives for Overlord’s entertainment.
A huge paw rested against his shoulder, snapping the spell, and he jerked, his neural net tingling unpleasantly as the memories dissipated.
“I’m,” he cleared his vocalizer of static and tried again. “I’m alright.”
Grimlock’s visor glowed in the darkness of the berthroom, “Didn’t sound alright.” His expression was keen, but his tone and field without pressure; Grimlock knew all too well the sting of old memory files.
Fulcrum stretched out a clawed hand before him, tracing the shadowed shape of the long, jointed fingers. Least of the Dinobots, shorter than Swoop even, cursed with an alt mode that would have struck terror into the sparks of his enemies if it wasn’t so absurdly small. “Just the usual,” he said lightly. “Flames, heat. Don’t even notice the screams much anymore. Just background noise really. At least I’m not afraid of heights.”
When they’d first met the comment would have resulted in his helm being removed from his shoulders, but now Grimlock merely snorted and flicked him gently with a finger, a cuff that made his plating ring. “Watch it, short stuff.”
“What, don’t want to take up parachuting?”
Grimlock shook his head, “I might, just to stick it to my former commander.”
“I would have paid good shanix to see the expression on his face when you survived the drop.”
“Squashed half a squadron under me,” Grimlock shrugged, his field buzzing with dark amusement. “Still worked as a weapon, just not the way they expected.” Tugging Fulcrum onto his back, he loomed over him. “Now, I’ll ask you what you asked me the last time I woke up flailing like a feathered organic with no head. Energon?” His field, a smothering, grounding blanket, rippled with arousal and purpose. “Or distraction?”
Fulcrum shivered, “Distraction, definitely distraction.”
The approving growl made his servos go weak. “Excellent.”
As Grimlock dove into his circuits, Fulcrum gripped at the sides of the really-too-narrow berth and gasped, “Was the chicken comment really necessary?”
Grimlock chuckled, heavy fingers tracing the wicked, curved claw that reared up from Fulcrum’s pede, “Of course it was.”
For the sake of completeness, I’m picturing Fulcrum’s alt mode as a Deinonychus antirrhopus, which despite looking very scary is still only half the size of a Pteranodon longiceps, which I’m guessing (read: bullshitting) is a pretty good approximation of Swoop’s alt mode. And of course, archosaurs include the lineages which gave rise to modern birds. Fear Fulcrum, chicken of death.
Thank you, paper-kraken, for the wonderful prompt and for being a wonderful person. I hope you like this. <3
LOOK. LOOK AT THIS AMAZINGNESS. I CAN’T EVEN. THERE ARE NO WORDS. I’ll just sob with pure joy over here in my corner because DAMN. HOT DAMN.
AND IT COMES WITH FEELS. ALL THE FEELS. LYRESNAKE, YOU MAY HAVE STARTED A THING. I WILL CONTINUE THE THING. GONNA DO THE THING. ~*~ ALL THE SWEET GRIMLOCK/FULCRUM AUs~*~
Okay, okay, I’m done screaming, but seriously, you won’t find a sweeter, more awesome lady than this one right here. And her gorgeous writing is the glorious icing on top of the best of best cakes!