Echoes and Fragments Part 1 - The Gathering Storm

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Echoes and Fragments Part 1 - The Gathering Storm is the first part 2016 science fiction story in the GoBots and Transformers series written by Jim Sorenson and illustrated by Christopher Colgin. [1]


Part 1 - The Gathering Storm

It was the year 2005. The treacherous Decepticons had conquered the Autobots’ home planet of Cybertron. But, from secret staging grounds on two of Cybertron's moons, the valiant Autobots prepared to retake their homeworld.

As both factions planned their plans and schemed their schemes, a different sort of confrontation was brewing in Maccadam's Old Oil House. Sideways, dimensional scoundrel extraordinaire, had spilled his oil when bumped from behind. Irked, he turned around, only to spy a mechanoid who did not belong in this region of time/space. That Sideways himself did not belong was neither here nor there; his optics locked on the rather blocky white-and-blue mech before him. "You're a bit far from, what is it, the Gargent Cluster?" he asked.

The boxy mech arched a mechanical brow, his face more expressive than most Cybertronians could manage. But then, he wasn't Cybertronian, was he? "One could say the same about you, hehehehe. You're from, what, Level 44... oh, I'm sorry, you prefer to call it the Viron Cluster, don't you?"

Sideways smirked. "I admit nothing," but the tension was broken. The two pulled up stools and began to talk shop, under the wary eye of the mustachioed blue bartender. It soon became apparent that both were slumming it in this Primax reality, waiting for an opportunity for mischief. Gong, as the Gargent-native called himself, soon began boasting about how well the natives of his timestream would deal with the upcoming challenge. Sideways scoffed, but Gong was undeterred. "Care to make it interesting?" Soon they settled on an amount, and the parameters of the contest. They would synch the Primax stream they were inhabiting with a Gargent stream via Omega Lock manipulation, and compare results. Sideways set forth for Gargent 186.0 Gamma, and Gong began the trek into Cybertron's interior.

The bartender sighed. He had known that Unicron would soon be impacting local space/time, but hadn't expected a pair of interlopers to exacerbate the situation. Their actions placed themselves outside of his purview, but there was another more suited to the task. He left the bar and folded himself into a lotus position, mentally seeking out the protector of all of space and time.

  • * * * *

Inside the Autobot command module on Moonbase 1, Optimus Prime walked about nervously. The time was close, he only needed a few more days before he could initiate his big push and finally liberate Cybertron from the scourge of Decepticon tyranny. "Ironhide, report to me at once!"

Ironhide grumbles to Optimus Prime about the Decepticons in The Transformer: The Movie

Ironhide was no more patient than his commander. "Every time I look into a monitor, Prime, my circuits sizzle. When are we gonna start bustin' Deceptichops?"

Optimus intended to use that. "I want you to make a special run to Autobot City on Earth--" Ironhide protested, but Optimus continued. "Listen, Ironhide, we don't have enough energon cubes to power a full-scale assault. Ready the shuttle for launch."

As Ironhide transformed and drove towards the shuttle, Optimus turned to his second-in-command for confirmation that it was safe to launch. Jazz affirmed that there was no Decepticon activity, then checked in with Moonbase 2. Bumblebee and Spike gave the all clear, so Optimus ordered a countdown. As the ship blasted into the void, Optimus reassured his men. "Now, all we need is a little energon, and a lot of luck."

Unbeknown to him, Laserbeak has observed the entire exchange. The Decepticon spy launched into the endless night, bound for Megatron.

  • * * * *
Gong finds the Omega Lock deep within Cybertron in Echoes and Fragments Part 1, fan image by Mathew R. Ignash

Deep in the core of Cybertron, Gong stretched forth his senses, connecting to the Omega Locks that kept Cybertron's place in the cosmos stable. He mused on Cybertron's unique nature, a stable axis upon which a universe spun. No wonder Unicron in all its incarnations sought its destruction. Gong favored no such carnage, merely seeking mischief. He found the frequency at which the one-dimensional strings that make up all of this particular reality vibrate, then, ever so gently, he nudged them towards that of his home dimension. The change would be invisible to the natives. As far as they were concerned, the conjoined reality would be their history, their reality. He giggled to himself, wondering what changes were taking place on the surface of Cybertron and beyond.

  • * * * *
Cy-Kill and his Renegades in Echoes and Fragments Part 1

Unseen by all, unfelt by all, the universe wavered, and a new history imprinted itself on all inhabitants. The war between Renegade and Autobot was at a critical turning point, and Cy-Kill hoped his spy's mission would prove fruitful.

Fitor peered out into the Cybertronian gloom, the two Autobot moons an ominous dagger pointed at his lordship's accomplishments. He spied the flare of a returning jet, then smiled. "Snoop returns, Cy-Kill."

A smirk filled Cy-Kill's face. "Welcome, Snoop!" He glanced pointedly at Zero. "So nice to have warriors I can actually rely upon." Zero looked hurt at the barb, but quickly covered it up.

The gentle whir of Snoop's conversion filled the base as she landed with aplomb. "I aim to please." She flipped a cartridge to Cop-Tur. "Hey, rotorboy, play this."

His claws nearly missed, and he fumbled with the cartridge for a moment before catching it. "Oooo, kaaaaay."

Cy-Kill's frown at his subordinate's clumsiness soon turned to undisguised glee as he watched Optimus Prime order a shuttle to Earth. As the Autobot muttered about needing luck, Cy-Kill gave a huge laugh. "More than you imagine, Optimus Prime!" The rest of the Renegades joined him.

  • * * * *

On board the Autobot Command Center, Ironhide and his crew manned the instruments as they made their way to Earth. Suddenly, it shuddered, and a huge hole was blown in the side of the ship. Brawn was the first to react as Cy-Kill mangled his way onto their ship. "Cy-Kill... RENEGADES!"

"Let's finally put an end to this tired dance!" Energy flared as Cy-Kill's fist shot a bolt of energy directly into Brawn's shoulder, toppling him. Cy-Kill aimed at the remaining three Autobots, his fist swaying back and forth as they took what minimal cover they could from their chairs. Renegades poured into the ship; Sky-Jack, Zero, Twin Spin, Gunnyr, and Blades.

Prowl made his move, standing up and firing an acid pellet without aiming. It whizzed by Twin Spin's face, who took aim and unleashed a blast that caught Prowl directly in his throat. Flames poured out of his mouth as his eyes dimmed.

The remaining Autobots made their last stand, firing blast after blast at the Renegade intruders. Cy-Kill and his five Renegades took the occasional glancing blow, but their superiority in numbers and position proved overwhelming. Shot after shot rocked Ironhide and Ratchet, and they soon fell. As they did, Slicks, Psycho, Crasher, and Cop-Tur flew in and took their seats at the Command Center's controls.

Cy-Kill surveyed the scene. "This was almost too easy, Zero," he noted.

His sub-commander looked upon the bodies with disdain. "Much easier, almighty Cy-Kill, than attacking the real threat. The Autobots' moonbase!"

A deep laugh was Cy-Kill's answer. "Don't be such a wet blanket, Zero. When we slip by their early warning systems in their own Command Center and destroy Autobot City, the Autobots will be vanquished forever!" His triumph was interrupted, momentarily, by the dying Ironhide attempting feebly grapple with Cy-Kill's boot. Cy-Kill just shook his head with contempt. "Such Autobot idiocy. Crasher, lock him in the hold. I may yet have use of him."

  • * * * *

At an idyllic lakeside just outside of Autobot City Hot Rod and Nick Burns sat fishing. Nick had a dejected look on his face, though Hot Rod was as enthusiastic as ever. "Fish are jumping today, eh, Nick?"

Nick sighed. "I guess so." He looked up, seeing the Autobot's optics wide with concern.

"Hey, what's the matter?"

Human and Autobot sat side by side. They'd known each other a long time. Nick fidgeted a moment longer, then gave in. "I guess I just miss Matt and Anya. I'm not used to staying behind."

The red Autobot nodded with understanding. "Hey, don't worry, those two will be back soon--oh, hey, I caught something!" Indeed, the line had gone taut. Hot Rod reeled him in with steel sinews and hydraulic musculature.

His consternation forgotten, Nick admired the catch. It was enormous, at least a foot long. "Wow, that's quite the catch!"

Hot Rod nodded in agreement, although the fish was miniscule compared to his missive metal frame. "Yup, it's a whopper all right."

A beeping noise interrupted their exchange. Nick pulled a scanner from his pocket. "Oh, hey, the Command Center's coming down. Wanna watch it land?"

The Autobot considered for a moment. "Sure, why not?" He tossed the fish back into the lake and converted to his Cybertronian sports car configuration. "Hop in!"

The pair rode back towards the city, only narrowly avoiding a roadblock being erected by Kup when Nick warned Hot Rod to dodge around it. To the top of Lookout Mountain they ride, Nick eagerly hopping out of Hot Rod as he skids to a stop near a high-tech pair of binoculars. The human's excitement quickly turned to icy fear. "Hot Rod, look, there's a hole in the ship!"

A magnification package slid over Hot Rod's optics, confirming what he was starting to fear. "Renegades!" He began to open fire, aiming for the hole in the Command Center and catching Zero off-guard.

From below, Kup looked up at Hot Rod blasting into the ship. "What's that darn fool doin'?" he wondered, but soon his question was answered. A hit on the Command Center's engines prompted Cy-Kill to fly out and begin his assault on Autobot City before he was quite inside the city's defensive envelope.

The Renegade commander beckoned with his arm theatrically. "Come, comrades, now is the time. Our assault commences!" Renegades spilled forth from the smoking vessel, firing blasters at Autobot City. Two turned their attention to the Autobot who had spotted them, Destroyer and Fly Trap.

Destroyer landed with a heavy thud and raised his fists at Hot Rod. "Come on down, ya mug!" He fired, damaging the platform and sending Hot Rod and Nick into freefall. Hot Rod caught Nick and landed, squarely in Destroyer's sights. The Renegade converted to his tank mode and took aim... only for Kup to leap onto his turret and yank the Renegade's barrel aside. Destroyer's shot caught Fly Trap and the damaged mech collided with Destroyer's tank mode, flipping it over.

Hot Rod was impressed. "Not bad for an old timer!"

Kup was not amused. "Old timer? That's something you'll never be if you don't get back to the city."

At that moment, Stallion flew overhead, strafing them both and causing them to dive for cover. "Save it, Kup! Let's burn rubber!" Both Autobots converted to their car modes and made haste for the city.

  • * * * *
Perceptor observes the Renegades attacking in Echoes and Fragments Part 1, fan image by Mathew R. Ignash

Inside the city, Perceptor converted to his microscope configuration to get a better look at the oncoming horde of Renegades. It wasn't good... it appeared that Cy-Kill had brought nearly 40 of his troops with him on the assault. The scientist switched back to his humanoid form, spied Ultra Magnus, and ran to the City Commander. "Ultra Magnus! A cursory evaluation of Renegade capabilities indicates a distinct tactical deficiency."

The commander clearly didn't have time to decode all that. "In other words, Perceptor?"

Springer got there first. "We're outnumbered!" He raised his arm and fired off a shot at Water Walk, zooming by overhead and firing wildly. The shot went wide, and the Autobots were forced to dive for cover.

The Autobots rallied under an awning, and Ultra Magnus took command. "Springer, you and Arcee transform Autobot City. Perceptor, tell Blaster to radio Prime for reinforcements." Blurr babbled something about wanting to help, and Magnus told him to help alert the rest of the Autobots.

Springer grabbed Arcee's hand, hurrying her towards the transformation circuitry. "Come on, Arcee, let's go!"

She resisted, for a moment. "But Hot Rod and Kup are still outside the city." She pressed a button on the side of her head and lowered a magnification lens, spying her friends dodging blasts from Stinger.

He renewed his effort. "We can't wait, they'll have to take care of themselves. Come on!"

Frantically, they rushed to the controls to initiate the transformation from energy-gathering metropolis to hardened battle fortress. Gears whirred, sprockets turned, and the city began to fold in on itself. They rushed to the next station, even as the ground under their feet shifted and reconfigured. Zero caught sight of them and fired several shots, pursuing them into the bowels of the reconfiguring superstructure. "Autobot wimps! You can't escape Zero!" They ducked into a hatchway as it sealed, and he realized that he was about to get caught in the mechanism. He launched himself vertically, but his left foot snagged on a closing panel. He quickly shut off his pain receptors and blasted at the panel, catching his ankle with the backblast but otherwise escaping the city unharmed. "You'll pay for that."

The city, meanwhile, completed its transformation, Autobot workers scurrying behind massive plates of armor and huge artillery pieces snapping into position. Cy-Kill realized that he had lost the element of surprise, but still had the Autobots off-balance. He fired several blasts into a bulkhead, to little effect. "Screw Head, Crain Brain, Spoons... breach their pathetic excuse for shelter," he majestically commanded.

His Renegades set to their task, with Screw Head drilling through a plate, Crain Brain lifting the debris away with his crane arm, and Spoons hauling it away in his forklift mode. "Tote that barge," began Crain Brain. "Lift that bale!" replied Spoons enthusiastically. Just then, a bridge connecting the bulkhead they were attempting to breach with the land beyond the river powering much of the city's hydroelectric works began to retract, and Spoons found himself awkwardly pulled to the other side with it. He converted back to his humanoid mode and tried to catch his balance.

Kup and Hot Rod approached the chaos at full speed. "Those Renegades are in our way," Kup worried.

"Wrong," declared Hot Rod with confidence, "they're our way in!" He slammed into Spoons and, incredibly, used the Renegade as a ramp, jumping the river with ease and even sending Crain Brain tumbling into the river below. Kup, with considerably less aplomb, attempted to duplicate the maneuver, though he crushed Spoons beneath his treads and landed squarely on Screw Head in the process. As the Autobots entered the safety of the fortress, a secondary plate of armor closed the breach.

The battle raged in earnest. Renegades swarmed about, utilizing their flight to good advantage and unleashing shot after shot at any Autobot who dared poke his head out from the safety of the city's ramparts. Spoiler, Decker Decker, Tank, Loco, Stretch, Vain Train, and Geeper-Creeper could all be spied flying in, firing a blast, then darting to safety out of the range of the fortress' guns.

Crossword flew close to the city's communication pod, fired a shot, then dodged the response. Inside, Blaster returned fire. "Look out and shout, ow!" He noticed Perceptor had climbed into the room. "Hey, Perceptor, what's shakin'? Other than this fortress?" Perceptor quickly informed him that he was to call to Cybertron for backup, and he complied, converting to his boombox mode and sending a directed tachyon signal to Cybertron. " Optimus Prime, do you read me? The Decepticons are blitzing Autobot City. We're really takin' a pounding. Don't know how much longer we can hold out."

Cy-Kill spied the active tachyon relay. "Dr. Go! Jam that transmission."

Go nodded. "Jawohl, Herr Cy-Kill." He turned to the Dread Launchers nearby. "You drei, destroy ze mechanism!"

Re-Volt, Chaos, and Traitor launched at the pod. Chaos and Traitor grabbed the dish and tore it from its mounting, while Re-Volt took aim at the transparent aluminum separating him from Blaster and Perceptor. "Autobot buffoons! Time to eat beak!" He converted to his twin alt modes, a launcher platform and a mechanical hawk. The hawk pecked at the protective covering several times, making a filigree of cracks. Then the launcher opened fire, blowing a huge hole in the pod. Re-Volt converted back to his humanoid form as he and his two companions leapt into the room. He grabbed Perceptor and put him in a headlock, prompting traitor to punch the scientist several times.

Chaos made a run at Blaster, who initiated a roundhouse kick that sent the Dread Launcher flying. "Not this time, Renegade slime!" He touched a button on his chest and Eject, Rewind, Ramhorn, and Steeljaw burst forth. "Sic 'em!" Ramhorn charged into Traitor, knocking him to the ground, while Eject and Steeljaw circled Re-Volt, who released Perceptor, eyeing the cassettes warily. Rewind jumped on Chaos as he tried to get to his feet, hanging off the neck of the much larger 'bot.

Perceptor got unsteadily to his feet, adjusting his neck. "Do you think you got through to Prime?"

Blaster steeled himself to aid his cassette companions. "Let's hope so. 'Cuz if I didn't, we're all gonna look like burnt out toaster ovens!"

  • * * * *

In another reality, Sideways made his way past Van Guard and Defendor, guarding an entrance to Old GoBotron. It was here, in the most ancient part of the planet, that Sideways would find what he sought. The Omega Locks, ancient artifacts predating the evolution of the GoBeings, were in reality a small part of the essence of Primus, that ancient--he supposed 'god' was the only apt descriptor--ancient god who had inhabited their world, subtly guided the GoBeings into the forms they had at present, that they might one day be able to battle the Chaos Bringer. Sideways had felt this reality's substrate waver and grow insubstantial as it was tapped by the Primax reality Gong was currently toying with.

Well, two could play at that game! He dodged the ancient, shambling GoBot Wrecks and some pitiful mutants, then entered the chamber and allowed himself to become one with the Locks, intent on disrupting the new reality equilibrium Gong had established. "Time to make things interesting!"

  • * * * *

The uneasy fabric of reality again shifted, as a constant in the distant reality imprinting itself upon this universe flipped a sign. In an instant, the inhabitants became participants in a never-ending struggle between heroic Guardians and evil Decepticons! A crucial battle raged in that war, one whose fate might determine the fate of their entire reality, though none present knew the stakes were quite so high.

It was twilight, and the Decepticon attack showed no sign of slowing. Tork, Tri-Trak, and Throttle each manned one of three windows, firing down at the Decepticon advance. "We're getting overrun," noted Tork morosely.

Tri-Trak took aim and fired, winging Dirge. "Don't let it get you down, Tork. We can hold!"

In a bunker nearby, Bent Wing and Super Couper took shelter from the onslaught, dragging with them the bodies of Sparky and Professor Von Joy. Super Couper, normally an irreverent prankster, took a moment to mourn his fallen comrades. Bent Wing had no time for it. "Come on, Super Couper, we need to get this Boomer into place. Megatron's on a rampage, and it's up to us to stop him!"

At that moment, Tailpipe and Raizor joined them, with Daniel in tow. "Keep at it, guys," encouraged Raizor, "the Robo Rebels are together again!"

The four of them put their backs into pushing the Boomer into position, and even Daniel lent a hand. Bent Wing glanced over at the newcomers. "I was afraid you'd be trapped outside the city."

Tail Pipe gave an exaggerated gulp. "Me too!"

The damaged Boomer finally slid into position, and Daniel climbed a ladder build for being much larger than himself. What he saw filled him with dread. Megatron and a large number of troops had gathered below one of the artillery pieces, including... he counted... all six Constructicons. "Constructicons, merge for the kill!"

He swiftly called for his Guardian companions. Super Couper got there first. "We're hosed."

Indeed, the six Constructicons united into the massive form of Devastator, and began advancing menacingly upon a Hitch Hiker drone. The drone's weapons cast about, attempting to get a lock, but the massive Decepticon warrior shattered it effortlessly.

Bent Wing rallied the Robo Rebels. "Come on, Guardians, we can do this!" They fired shell after shell into Devastator, knocking him back but causing no real harm. He tore off a huge armored plate from Guardian City and hurtled it at the Rebels, who scattered lest they be destroyed with the Boomer.

The battle raged through the night. Though the Guardians fought valiantly, the Decepticon advantage was too great. More than a dozen Guardians fell before Megatron's remorseless assault. Dirge strafed Dive-Dive; Astrotrain demolished Apollo; Starscream obliterated Ace, Royal-T, and Spy-Eye; Soundwave and his cassettes tore Hi-Way apart and blasted Street Heat into oblivion; Thundercracker and Skywarp cornered Man-O-War and annihilated him; Ramjet knocked Spay-C out of the air and into Good Knight, leaving both critically injured; Thrust caught Wrong Way outside of the shelter of the city and threw him into a turbine; and Megatron himself personally accounted for Beamer, Sky Fly, and Guide Star when the neophytes were foolish enough to engage him. When added to the three deaths in the shuttle, Pumper, Hans-Cuff, and Dart, with the injured Dumper trapped in the wreckage of the shuttle Megatron had commandeered, the Guardians were down nearly half their total combat strength. It was a dark day indeed.

As dawn broke, things seemed hopeless for the Guardians. Megatron smirked, confident in victory. The last of the automated defenses had fallen, leaving Guardian City ripe for plunder. The Guardians' will had, at long last, been broken, and he meant to press his victory. "Their defenses are broken, let the slaughter begin!"

But he had spoken too soon; at that moment, a Guardian shuttle from Cybertron arrived, piloted by Leader-1 and Jack Attack. Leader-1 observed the carnage below him with concern; the biggest threat seemed to be the combined form of the Constructicons. "Bolt, Scratch, Dozer, Staks... form Courageous and cut that Decepticon down to size! I'm going to deal with Cy-Kill."

The four Guardians donned their Power Suits and exited the craft, alongside Leader-1. They quickly initiated the combination protocol, combining with the shuttle to form the arms and legs of the mighty Courageous. The massive Guardian flew into Devastator and punched him back several steps, but the Decepticon quickly recovered his equilibrium. The titan unleashed a savage blow that sent Courageous reeling, following up with an uppercut that knocked the Guardian combiner to his back. He planted his foot on his stunned adversary and bellowed to the heavens in triumph.

Flying above the scene, Leader-1 witnessed the defeat of his combiner and the bodies of his men below. "I've got to put a stop to this, now!" he vowed. He swooped down, crashing the nose of his F-15 Eagle configuration into Thrust and knocking him aside effortlessly, then bowling Shrapnel over and forcing Blitzwing to dive out of the way.

By this point the Decepticons had spotted him and unleashed a fusillade of energy. He summoned his force field to deflect it, then converted to his humanoid mode even as one last burst from his jet engines propelled him into the sky. He fired off blast after blasts, striking Ramjet, Thundercracker, and Soundwave before coming to a landing. Before Kickback or Dirge could react, he mowed them down as well before turning to face Megatron, casting a long shadow in the dawn light.

"Leader-1!" exclaimed Megatron.

"Your tyranny comes to an end, Megatron," the Guardian declared.

"Why throw away your life so recklessly?" inquired the Decepticon.

"The only thing I'm throwing away will be the key, after I lock you up for good," retorted Leader-1.

Megatron started to raise his fusion cannon, then checked himself. "No! I'll crush you with my bare hands!" He leapt at the Guardian, and they fell together in a shower of sparks.

Tri-Trak rushed to help, with Major Mo close behind him. "Leader-1 needs our help!" His mentor shouted after him that this was Leader-1's fight.

The silver Guardian hurtled Megatron into a wall. Ever adaptive, the Decepticon picked up a sharp piece of debris and hurtled it at the Guardian, piercing his side. Tired of the brawling, Megatron lifted his fusion cannon and unleashed its fury, prompting Leader-1 to again activate his force field before returning fire from his clenched fists. Megatron was struck dead-center in the chest and hurtled back against a wall, his cannon shaken loose and buried in debris. Leader-1 took a moment to pull the chuck of metal from his side, a tactical error that Megatron took advantage of by summoning an energon saber and striking the wound, causing Leader-1 to back away while clutching his injured side. He nearly stumbled off a ledge but caught himself. Meanwhile, Megatron threw himself into the air and came down, sword first, but incredibly Leader-1 sidestepped the blow and unleashed a savage uppercut, knocking Megatron to the ground. Megatron quickly reversed things with an expertly-timed kick from both feet, and then they were grappling.

"I'll rip out your optics," he growled. Leader-1 worked a hand around Megatron's neck and threw him to the ground, causing him to skid to a rest next to a pile of debris.

Torq and Tri-Trak rushed up. "Great work, Leader-1!" enthused Torq, "Let's get this villain behind bars."

Leader-1 nodded. "Good call, Torq." He raised his fists, covering Megatron. "Let's get some energy cuffs on that blackguard."

For his part, Megatron was not ready to concede defeat. A laser pistol lay on the ground just a few paces in front of him, concealed from Guardian view by the damaged landscape.

"No more, Leader-1. I concede defeat. Allow my Decepticons to go honorably into exile." He crawled forward as he did so, eyes pleading, inching ever closer to the weapon.

"Decepticons, honorable?" asked Leader-1. "I've fallen for too many of your ruses, Megatron."

Megatron knew he had to act. He snatched the weapon and began to take aim. He hadn't counted on Tri-Trak, though. The Guardian raised his fists and unleashed twin energy blasts. Megatron instinctively raised his left arm and activated an energy shield, deflecting the bolts into Leader-1. The Guardian leader was pushed back several steps, but still managed to raise his fists. He and Megatron fired simultaneously, and energy lanced into Leader-1's wounds and Megatron's chest. Megatron fell backwards, off the nearby precipice, bouncing off of the wreckage of the level below before slamming, hard, into the metal ground below. Leader-1 attempted to stay on his feet, but collapsed.

Tri-Trak ran to his fallen leader. "Leader-1... I'm sorry!"

Decepticons gathered around Megatron's shattered body, energy freely sparking about his wounds. Starscream, dripping with contempt, inquired as to his health, before unleashing a brutal kick to his sovereign. Several Decepticons winced. "Astrotrain, transform and get us out of here."

Megatron looked to his most loyal subordinate, Soundwave, and begged him to carry him to safety. Soundwave acknowledge the order and gently, ever so gently, picked up his fallen commander.

Astrotrain converted to his train mode, expanding as he did, and the Decepticons scrambled aboard, many carrying their damaged brothers. Bent Wing could barely believe it. "The Decepticons are retreating!"

Torq fired off a blast as they withdrew. "Leader-1 did it. He drove them off."

Starscream, the last aboard, ordered Astrotrain to take off. His rocket engines fired up and he converted to his space shuttle mode, flying back to Cybertron in defeat.


  1. ↑ Jim Sorenson (w). "Echoes and Fragments" Ask Vector Prime (February 10th, 2016), Fun Publications

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