Somewhere, at sometime, all is Dark.
From within this darkness, a light appears. A small orb, with a faint blue tint, it floats gently above a hand. The hand is light, faint, easily flowing and changing like smoke in a light wind.
The hand does not move, as scenes begin to be played out on the orb. Robotic warriors fight, run, battle, and explore. All of this on a planet that is not theirs.
A few feet above the orb two glowing yellow eyes appear. Nothing else. There is no face, no body, no arm connected to the hand, nothing. Simply a pair of eyes in the dark.
"One of these shall be the one to aid in the bringing of the twilight. But which one?" came an eerie voice that seemed to come from everywhere. "I must learn more."
"Foolish Maximals! The pod is ours!" comes the malicious voice of Drow.
"No way, that pod is Maximal property. I've seen you get your filthy hands on too many pods to let this one slip by!" Huntress, Maximal tracker, yells.
While on a routine scouting mission in the northern climates, unit Eclipse had picked up the locator beacon of a downed Maximal stasis pod. But a moment later the signal vanished and her com was down. Alpha Hound, Maximal leader, had decided to send out a ground team to locate the lost Maximal. However, once there, the team was ambushed by a party of Predacons.
"Now this is what I call an adventure! buk-buk" ScratchCap called to his two comrades.
"We must get to pod. Must not let Predacons get it." Tusks said. His simple mind was quite worried about his fellow shipmate. He and ScratchCap both knew what it was like to be stuck in stasis pods, to be stuck in a state in which you knew nothing of what was happening around you, or if you were even truly around.
"Oh, but we will!" Throttle laughed as he fired off a homing missile across the expanse between the teams.
The heat of the battle had melted the snow around them, and now had burned the dormant field of grass beneath it. The mountain valley in which they were situated was well secluded, and while the rest of the area was in summer, it was still locked in winter.
"Yes, we shall deeeestroy them all!!" buzzed WarpScream as he hovered above them. Huntress growled and leapt into the air, activating her jets, still shooting as she flew towards the insect.
"No.. You.. Won't!" she yelled, and then all was light.
"Uhhn, my head!" Huntress moaned as she sat up. Her paws lifted her into her air. Her paws? "Wasn't, wasn't I in robot mode?"
"Yes you were, as was I." Huntress wheeled around and though her eyes were foggy, she made out the form of Drow standing beside her, also in Beast Mode.
"Drow!" she yelled at the sight. "Huntress, Maximize!" Nothing happened. "Maximize!" Again nothing. "Maximize!" she said with a bit of iritableness growing in her voice.
"Give it up. It won't do you any good. Whoever brought us here, they're not letting us transform. So ya might as well sit down and relax until they show themselves."
"Here?" Huntress said rhetorically. She had been more worried about the Predacon that her surroundings. Now she noticed. They were not on the mountain. They were... somewhere else. They two of them were standing in a large circle of light. Several round, gray stones surrounded the ring. The light stopped at the edge of the ring, simply stopped. Beyond, they could see only blackness. Perhaps there was nothing more beyond. Huntress sighed and sat down.
"So, given up already?" Drow said to his fellow captive.
"What do you mean?" She replied. "You told me to sit down"
"Of course I did. Ha, ha ha." he laughed at her, showing off his gator teeth. He then grew very stern, with a malicious grin. "I said no such thing! You Maximal are weak, a coward. No wonder you are so easily defeated each time we go for a pod."
"Why you!" she growled, leaping to her feet. She carefully moved closer towards him, head down, ready to attack. However, an aura of energy suddenly gripped her, preventing her from moving. She slowly relaxed her muscles and the energy dissipated. She returned to her side of the circle.
"Your a Wimp!"
"How dare you?" she said snarling. She stood up to attack again.
"Didn't you learn a minute ago?" She looked at him for a moment before sitting down. "I see. Truly a wimp. You won't even stand to fight. No wonder we are so good at getting those pods from you."
"Just because you ambush us, and overpower us, and use barbaric tactics to get what you want does not mean that I am Weak! Do you understand!" She yelled, though her voice showed that she was scared. Scared of her surroundings, her situation, her companion, and mostly, because she was starting to believe him. She could not understand how he was getting to her.
Her eye suddenly twitched in pain. She quickly raised a paw and began rubbing it.
"What's wrong with your eye, little girl?"
"Nothing, nothing at all."
"Isn't that the one I shot out?" She stared up at him.
She had never forgotten that shot, the day they salvaged Riptide. It seemed he had not forgotten either.
"It is! Yes, but wasn't it your robot eye I shot? Interesting that it still plagues you even when in this mode." He stood up and walked a few paces closer. Now I remember. Earlier, on the mountain, your eye was still damaged. Why have you not replaced it?"
"It is a badge of honor! It shows I am a survivor! A warrior! I won't back down easily."
"Oh, but didn't you a minute ago?" he snarled as he returned to his side, watching her out of the corner of his eye.
He plopped down again and shut his eyes for a few minutes. During this time, the two sat in silence. His eyes remained shut when he spoke again.
"You do know that my troops have probably already retrieved the pod and made it a Predacon, don't you?"
"They have not! There is no way ScratchCap and Tusks would allow that!"
"Yes, and why were those two with you? Why not units Quiron and Riptide as usual?"
"None of your business!" She yelled.
"Hit a nerve, I think."
Huntress did not answer. Her two companions had been injured heavily in the battle over unit SlewSlander's pod. She could not come out of her quarters for a few cycles after she had almost let them get slagged. She was glad that ScratchCap and Tusks were willing to be led by her.
"See what?" she barked at him. He had opened his left eye and was staring straight at her.
"Oh, nothing, just yourself."
"What do you mean by that?"
"Just that!" Drow replied sharply. "I see yourself. Your true self. The one that you wont let others see. You care so much about your comrades, and it eats you up when you fail and they are hurt or lost! That is why you are weak!"
"NO! NO! YOU KNOW NOTHING ABOUT ME!!!" She screamed as she lunged at him. The same energy field caught her, but she fought against it. Her body tensed and fought for freedom. Her eye seemed to burn with fury. Foam began to form at the corner of her mouth. She roared wildly within the circle, loud enough to have caused an avalanche if they were on the mountain.
And then her struggle stopped, as she suddenly was bathed again in a warm essence, and all, once again, became light.
"Stuck a nerve, me thinks."
The glowing yellow eyes watched all of this in his orb.
"I see," he uttered to no one but himself. "This one has strength, and determination. But her intentions are too pure. An admirable trait, but not one I can use. But this one has potential. His craft in getting her to doubt herself is incredible. If the rest of his kind is even a fraction of the amount of evil he is, they shall serve my needs wisely. Fenrir will be proud."
He orb vanished, and a cloud of smoke flooded the area still illuminated by the remnants of light. And from that smoke, a figure stepped forward.
"NO!!!" Huntress screamed as she roared into consciousness. She leapt up, and found herself on the mountain side again, and she was once more in robot mode.
Her arm went up to her lost eye, which once again twitched in a momentary burst of pain.
"Huntress okay?" came the voice of Tusks. She looked up and found his warm, innocent face staring down at hers.
"I.. I'... I'm fine, thank you."
"Thanks nothing!" ScratchCap whined in his Bronx accent. "We just got here."
"How long was I gone?" she asked her companions.
"Gone? You were gone?" Tusks muttered as he stared at the mission commander.
"You didn't know I was gone?"
"No. One of WarpScream's homing missiles detonated prematurely and knocked us all out. We woke up and walked over here and found you screaming 'No.' Must have been some wild dream."
"A dream?" she muttered to herself, trying to remember what had happened, though she could not. She stood and walked off for a second before wheeling around, her eye wide. "The Pod!!"
The group looked at each other and rushed off.
"Uhh, what hit me!" Drow demanded as he awoke.
"Sorry sir, a missile went off by accident, we all got knocked out," the insect near him replied.
"No, not that, in the circle. And how did you get... How did I get back here!" Drow yelled at the two Predacons standing next to him on the ledge.
"The blast knocked you up here, like Warp Scream said?" Throttle responded, looking at his companion in confusion. "Maybe your short term memory file storage was damaged."
"NO! I am fine. I just remember, being..... someplace else?" He stood up for a minute before he began walking down towards the valley. "Follow, we must find the pod before... before Huntress and the Maximals."
"No need," came a voice.
The group turned to face an odd creature. A Fuzor. It was half Badger, and half goat.
"Who are youuuu?" came the buzz of WarpScream.
"Allow me to introduce myself." the figure stated. "Loki, TERRORIZE!!!" And the creature transformed into a towering Predacon warrior.
"Excellent!" Bludgeon will be proud!" Drow cackled. "Let us go."
And the four headed off down the valley, to the awaiting shuttle pod, and then to base camp. Loki stopped for a second and looked back.
"Excellent indeed." He said, as his two eyes began to glow yellow.