Hunger.   Posted by Narrator.Group: 0
Narrator
 GM, 2 posts
 Victor Caroli
 Distinctive Voice
Sun 19 Jan 2020
at 04:58
Hunger
The Golden Age came at a high price: Depleting Cybertron of most of it's energy reserves.  Inevitably, debate about how to save the starless wandering planet turned to violence.  Those who favored reducing the population by smelting the less productive and plundering other worlds became Decepticons.  The rest had to become Autobots or face annihilation at the hands of the Decepticons.

Iacon.  Ironhide has summoned you to a make-shift armory for a briefing.  Ammo boxes and weapons are haphazardly piled up along the walls.  Bumblebee and Wheeljack wave hello / goodbye to you as they pass you on the way out.

"I've got a few new upgrades for my vehicle mode I'm eager to test out," Wheeljack mentions to Bumblebee just before they disappear from sight.

Ironhide waves you over.

"Alright, you three.  If you haven't already heard the news, Perceptor has located a world rich in resources, and it's relatively close.  Our spies tell us that there's no sign that the Decepticons have found it yet.  That's the good news.  The bad news is: we don't have enough fuel to make it there, let alone back.  Yet.

"So that's where you come in.  We're organizing small teams to simultaneously go smuggle some fuel rods from scattered points in Decepticon territory.  If they find and respond to one team, chances are, the others will be home free.  But for good measure got separate hit-and-run teams that'll be providing you with a diversion far from where you'll be going.  Here's where you should search for the rods."


A map shows a location that's only 5 minutes behind enemy lines by land along with a few suggested possible ways of sneaking in or out.  But the search area is broad enough that it could take hours searching every inch of it.  "Sneak in, find and take as many rods as you can, but keep in mind that the longer you take the better your chances are of being caught.  Take what you'll need from the armory, but don't be greedy.  Time is of the essence, so get going."
Gem
 Player, 1 post
 Sparkles! Rainbows!
 Explosions!
Sun 19 Jan 2020
at 05:35
Hunger
Gem watches Wheeljack pass by with a smile and admiration. She has always admired his genius and has a goal of creating or doing something that will impress even him. But the Golden Age is over... creating new things takes time and energy that is in much higher demand now.

She turns to see Ironhide and listens. He could be intimidating when he gets riled up, but Gem knows that Ironhide directs all his burning anger at Decepticons. To Autobots, the guy is actually quite affable. Especially if you talk smack about 'cons.

Unfortunately, the haste with which he emphasizes for the mission derails Gem's thoughts on what "badass" thing to say to Ironhide and she just says, "Yessir!"

Even as she turns to go, she transforms mid-twist and lands on her already moving wheels!

Expecting the others with her to keep up (or pass her), she begins saying, "Sounds like a think-on-your-feet mission. Little we can do planning-wise except maybe an escape plan. My lightshow can blind a con for a second or two, but I'd rather be sure their optics are fixed on me when I use it, so preference for close range. So let's be sure to stick to routes that provide enough cover to force cons to land and get in close if they spot us, even it it means it slows us down."

Stealth almost always comes at the cost of speed, it seems. Especially true for robots that turn into vehicles that go at higher speeds.

On a straightaway, Gem can reach speeds of 100 MPH and she is pretty maneuverable due to being a small car, but she isn't specifically designed for speed.

Although she doesn't say it, Gem is determined to return with at least one rod per teammate.
Turbo Thunder
 GM, 3 posts
 It's Thunder, not Fire.
 I'm legally distinct.
Sun 19 Jan 2020
at 07:18
Hunger
  Turbo Thunder has already learned that whole worlds lousy with natural energy potential don't mean a thing when nobody can be bothered to spend the resources on how to safely get it (or him) back into space until it's too late to try.  So the place must be real convenient if everyone is excited about it.

  "You know how bots get when I'm spending anything but my own, Ironhide.  At least my gun's bigger than Bumbelee's."  Lightning! (That he makes him look wasteful to use) Micro Missiles! (that are technically harmless gyro-destabilizers)... And an 'Energy Efficient' Laser. At least it can fire both Blue, and Red lasers though.

  The Blue (probably) Bot drives off after Gem, passing her then pulling back.  "Everything may be horrible, but at least home has roads."   Turbo Thunder is still readjusting to the fact he's edges into 'fast' car territory.
Jumpjet
 GM, 5 posts
Sun 19 Jan 2020
at 20:35
Hunger
Two cool blue bots.  Two cool blue text color choices.

The official story is that Jumpjet was a failed experiment in adding flight capability to Autobots.  With energon in such short supply, the idea was to make use of highly refined liquid organic fuel for his flight engines... which turns out to be in very short supply as well.  Oops.  So his alt mode was reshuffled to wheeled vehicle, ( https://www.njuskalo.hr/image-...s-slika-35486346.jpg ) "until we can figure out how to get your flight engine to efficiently convert energon into thrust."

In truth, he was actually a just a Decepticon jet deemed too inefficient for service.  Luckily, the Autobots rescued him from the ignoble demise of being melted down into the same smelting pot as the janitor bots they were there to free.  Optimus declined Wheeljack's offer to rewire Jumpjet's brain, opting instead to reprogram the ex-Con to join the Autobots in a more ethical way: persuading him with words.  It worked!

So plundering responsibly mining a world with lots of energy sources is kindofa personal matter.  Salute to the red van boss man, transform, and roll out with the other two, lagging behind them even at top speed.

"Uh... so... do we get optic shields to keep from being blinded?  Or do we have to play reverse peek-a-boo with precision timing?"

This message was last edited by the GM at 20:36, Sun 19 Jan 2020.

Gem
 Player, 2 posts
 Sparkles! Rainbows!
 Explosions!
Sun 19 Jan 2020
at 21:04
Hunger
Gem answers Turbo Thunder, "Home will always be home... even in dire circumstances."

Gem says, "Hopefully, the idea would be you guys will have your backsides facing me ready to jet. I'll do my thing and trail right behind ya. But mostly, we're hoping it doesn't even come to that."

She figures Jumpjet probably figured she meant to distract cons so they could get a surprise attack. And it had crossed Gem's mind too, but escape is more likely than victory. Especially when they are going behind enemy lines.

Gem can't understand what the decepticons were thinking. Who is going to voluntarily get smelted anyway? Did they know bots would resist and simply didn't care? And what is the point of survival if you have to commit such horrid atrocities to survive? What about more scientific methods?

...and then Gem thinks about far in the future, when everyone in the universe starts running out of fuel. She decides to cut off her thought process there lest she think too much and get distracted from the mission.
Turbo Thunder
 GM, 4 posts
 It's Thunder, not Fire.
 I'm legally distinct.
Mon 20 Jan 2020
at 04:14
Hunger
  Man, imagine needing to be powered by organic goo compounds instead of vague super science.  Who would ever make an alt mode like that?  Oh right, desperate people.

  "I might or might not have problems looking anyways, lightning strikes tend to be a lot more brief than a sustained show.  Though 'just don't get caught' means not having to worry about that, I'd be surprised if we pulled it off entirely. So... Let's not get caught until after we've looted the place."
Jumpjet
 GM, 7 posts
Mon 20 Jan 2020
at 04:51
Hunger
Jumpjet is inwardly comparing the lax approach to fighting the war that the Autobots have to the way things are run on the Decepticon side.  Not all that different, really.  Only, just as likely that your teammate would have said, "Not my problem.  You can't handle my power, who needs ya on the team?!"  At least Autobots have some semblance of teamwork going for them.  Maybe that's why the war's a stalemate in spite of the Autobots' lack of any jets.  If only the 'cons weren't such tailpipes...  They wouldn't be Decepticons.  Catch 22.

Iacon is far enough back from the front lines that there's plenty of time to chat in the underground tunnels.  But as the group begins to get close to one of the possible crossing points, the group has to start traveling above ground, risking being spotted by the enemy.

But as soon as they are above ground, Turbo Thunder will immediately recognize the construction style of the destination district.  Old lightning collector towers stand widely spaced apart, each with a surrounding deep ravine.  If there's any charged rods, it'll be under the service platforms that form the floor of these ravines.

https://postimg.cc/Th2H1BcP
https://postimg.cc/hhCZdMC1
Gem
 Player, 3 posts
 Sparkles! Rainbows!
 Explosions!
Mon 20 Jan 2020
at 05:00
Hunger
If Gem knew Jumpjet's internal thoughts, she'd explain the idea of being lax to calm nerves so that one can even do the mission at all... she is quite nervous right now, after all.

Gem transforms and leans up against a wall, peering out at the scene. She whispers, "This looks like the place."

She looks up. "I wonder if those towers are being used for surveillance."
Turbo Thunder
 GM, 5 posts
 It's Thunder, not Fire.
 I'm legally distinct.
Mon 20 Jan 2020
at 05:37
Hunger
  "Much like 'throw something at them, 'look at it from a tall place' is an eternal concept no matter your tech level Gem.  But that's actually less likely for once.  I was shipped off because our local lightning collectors were going out of style."  Perfecting weather control or simply flying through space long enough weather doesn't even HAPPEN anymore has a way of doing that.

  "Still, we're living on the biggest flying hunk of metal the galaxy has ever seen.  So while any processed energon was probably taken, the capacitor banks are certain to have a charge in them after all this time... Well, unless somebody tore them out for spare parts."
Jumpjet
 GM, 8 posts
Mon 20 Jan 2020
at 16:17
Hunger
Almost as if on cue, the team sees a green seeker take off from the part of the top of the tower that isn't visible from the ground.  The seeker transforms and heads northwest, away from the group.

Over coms, they hear Jazz give an update, "OK, everyone we've just received confirmation: The diversions are working!  The hit-and-run teams are kicking the 'run' part of their function into high gear, so if you haven't reached your targets yet, burn rubber!  The 'cons bore easy, so they won't chase ghosts for long."

Jumpjet examines the damaged lightning tower.  "This place is trashed.  Wonder what would happen if lightning were to strike it while we're busy fooling around with leftover capacitor banks."

Jazz or no Jazz, Jumpjet will cross no-man's land when the other two start doing the brave Autobot thing, and not before.
Gem
 Player, 4 posts
 Sparkles! Rainbows!
 Explosions!
Wed 22 Jan 2020
at 04:51
Hunger
Gem says, "If lightning happens, we'll deal with it then. Now's our chance." she hurries over to the edge and skids her way down the side slope down to the grates. She doesn't wait for anyone before she gets to grabbing one of the grates to pull it aside and immediately get to looking. Of course, if the grate gives her a hard time, she'll look for one of her allies to help her get it loose.
Turbo Thunder
 GM, 6 posts
 It's Thunder, not Fire.
 I'm legally distinct.
Wed 22 Jan 2020
at 06:05
Hunger
  "Right, of course the Decepticons would order easily fried seekers to stand guard up there.  Probably called them a coward rather than appeal to statistics if they complained." Just because Turbo Thunder would benefit from nature wanting to smite him, doesn't make it feel any less crazy.

  So he heads over to help out Gem, also making a quick check for if this was a push or slide grate rather than a pull situation.
Jumpjet
 GM, 9 posts
Fri 24 Jan 2020
at 23:33
Hunger
Ah Acid Storm.  One of the least annoying seekers in Jumpjet's opinion.  But bring up the time he was captured by organics and he gets just as hostile as anyone else.

"Easily fried?  You mean by catching a bolt of lightning because he's sitting on top of a lightning rod?  If only.  But yeah.  You're probably right about the dumb ways the Decepticons motivate one another."

The grates aren't locked down, merely held down with bolts.  Easy enough to pop off with a handy multi-tool that every member of the team likely has.  Unfortunately, though, the energy rods are all missing.  Probably looted long ago by the Decepticons.

But most 'cons aren't very tech savvy when it comes to legitimate ways to gather energy.  So they probably didn't know about the relatively small under-layer of energy rods that were kept underneath, insulated from the main battery as a back-up supply in case of emergency.

Turbo Thunder knows.  This is just like home.  A little bit of digging and the team hits a jackpot!  Dozens of fully charged energy rods!

"Ha!  So much energy to be had right under their noses!"
Gem
 Player, 5 posts
 Sparkles! Rainbows!
 Explosions!
Fri 24 Jan 2020
at 23:39
Hunger
Gem's eyes go wide. OK, Transformers can't do that, so her jaw goes agape. "OK... dozens... how do we transport all this... No using the radio, lest the cons find us by radio. Well they didn't see us yet, so let's grab what we can, hide the remainder and report back immediately. There's no time to lose."

Gem grabs as many as she can hold and carefully watches the grates while the others grab what they can.