Soft chirping dragged Megatron’s attention from the report on his data pad and onto a crystal cluster not five feet from him. Obviously the crystal was not chirping, and after a moment the Lord High Protector got up and rounded the sizable cluster.
On the other side of the softly glowing pink cluster, a small sparkling leaned on it, legs wobbly as the little thing balanced precariously on his pede tips attempting to reach a mechabutterfly. He was making the soft distressed chirps because he could not reach.
”That is dangerous, little one.” Megatron put his hands around the tiny mechling and lifted him up where he could better see the green mechabutterfly, but not reach it. However it seemed he had distracted the sparkling from his endeavor for the little mech looked up at him and giggled, little hands clapping together in a spontaneous show of delight.
The sparkling was utterly adorable. Little face softly rounded but showing promise of beauty already. Bright blue and red colors, offset by the silvery white and chrome also decorating the delicate frame. But it was the brightness in the blue optics that really captured the High Lord Protector.
Such curiosity and delight, such promise of a bright processor…
“Come with me, I am sure your caretaker will be here soon and till then I can read you my report. Maybe it will even seem interesting what with having a listener?” The foundling cooed and waved his little arms around. Megatron smiled and earned a brilliant smile in return, and then a gurgle as the small thing squirmed happily.
Almost a joor later, a frantic nursemech almost fell into his clearing, relief making the small mech crumble to the ground in an less then graceful bow. The mech was about to speak when Megatron put a finger to his own dermas and softly spoke.
“Shh… he is sleeping.” Megatron did not change his tone from the one he had used to read out loud with for the past joor. In his lap the small mechling lay curled, one tiny fist in his mouth and vents working in rhythmical calm.
“He is your charge?” The nursebot nodded, a look of shame on the delicate face plate.
“Be more careful in the future, he could have come to harm… would you be so kind as to give me his name?” Megatron knew well that it was not his place to chastise the nursebot, though he would likely get away with it if he chose to do it. He did not do it.
“O-Optimus, High Lord. M-may I go n-now, High Lord?” Megatron inclined his head and watched the small nursebot as he carefully lifted the sparkling, Optimus, and gave him up to his proper caretaker. As soon as the small mech could he scuttled off, sparkling clutched to narrow chest plates and panic in his blue optics.
Megatron was somewhat amused and somewhat exasperated at the display of fear, just because he commanded the armies of Cybertron… Oh well. The High Lord went back to his report, almost instantly missing the small warm weight of the sparkling, and the chance to read out loud.
“You’re in!” The squeal was most unbecoming for a noble youngling that was to be house leader one day, but Rodimus had never been one to care much for what was ’becoming’.
“It’s the academy, Roddy, everyone gets in.” Sentinel’s tone suggested that Rodimus might be a little slow on the uptake. The blue and white noble had a nasty streak a mile wide, but he was loyal, and far nastier to those that attempted to poke fun at either Rodimus or Optimus. Count the good things?
All three younglings came from the same tower and that was practically a guarantee for them being friends. It was not a guarantee for them to be good friends, or for them not to bicker. Which they did a lot!
Rodimus was too carefree. Sentinel was too judgmental. Optimus was too serious. But in a strange way they also balanced each other, and that was the important thing in the end. Still, Optimus often got tired of his two best friends bickering or baiting each other.
“But not everyone gets in with a perfect sco~ore!”
“He did not!”
“He did too~oo!”
Optimus sighed and slouched back in his seat, expecting it to take a while before he got to actually see the pad that Rodimus was now dancing around Sentinel with. This orn he just wanted to go home, there would be something waiting for him… and if his results was really as good as Rodimus was teasing with then it would be something absolutely awesome, he was sure of it!
It was always li- A datapad was showed in his face and Optimus’ thoughts were broken. He tried to focus on the screen but the pad was yanked away again and he almost growled in annoyance.
“Damn you!” Sentinel was looking at the pad, possibly again, and looked furious. “How come you always get those perfect scores? It shouldn’t be possible for any mech to be so damned perfect!” Optimus knew it was just a flare of temper, and that Sentinel would quickly be back to his old sarcastic self, but it was still annoying. He got up and snatched the datapad from the other.
“Well I don’t know! Maybe the fact that I actually use my time sensibly and study?” With that he sauntered off towards home, leaving his friends behind.
He was still moody when the door swooshed shut behind him, but for once it didn’t last more than a second. In the receiving hall of his home stood a big crate, marked with a well known symbol.
“Yes, it is for you and yes, you can open it.” The dry note in his Creator’s voice was offset by the proud smile on his normally so stern faceplates, and his Carrier was smiling big enough to split his dermas at the corners.
“Sire, Carrier.” He bowed to them as was custom but barely had optics for anything but the crate. And his prediction was true, it held a one person skimmer… and was in his colors! It even had the crest of his family displayed. He had really managed to make his Creator’s proud of him.
Last meal was a good and cozy affair that orn.
It did not get worse that there was a delivery just after last meal had concluded, a gift that Optimus had sort of been waiting for, though maybe that was more hoping for. It was a small box, worn and nondescript, but his family had long since realized that these gifts were not what they looked like. This one was also worth far more then it looked.
“Primus…” Ratbat’s voice was shocked and Ultra Magnus’ shark intake of air denoted the same. And truly, the replica of the Matrix was perfect…
To wear a replica was not uncommon, but usually they were made in one metal and not necessarily very correct, even if they might be worth a lot. This though… this was a perfect replica in miniature, right down to the glowing orb made from unrefined energon crystal. It was magnificent!
“You must wear to the opening ceremony!” Optimus nodded jerkily and then excused himself, fleeing to his room where he could set his newest treasure among the gifts he had received for as long as he could remember from a mech he did not know…
”I am not stupid you know…” Optimus squared his shoulders, back to the High Lord Protector of Cybertron. He might be Prime now, for all of three orns filled with celebration and pampering unlike anything he had ever tried before, but he still couldn’t look the huge gunmetal grey mech in the optic without trembling. But it was true, he was not stupid… he had figured it all out.
“I never said you were…” The velveteen rumble made him shiver, and miss the strange warm weight of his red cape of office. There was a promise there, something he couldn’t decipher on his own for all that he wasn’t ‘stupid’.
That promise had been there from the moment he had been presented to the High Lord Protector on his way into the Matrix chamber. He’d heard it even then, despite his fear and trepidation at having to stand though the trial of the Matrix. So much had been on his shoulders then!
‘I look forward to seeing you again.’ That had been what the High Lord Protector had said to him, what Megatron had said to him. It was as if he knew that the long dormant Matrix of Leadership would wake up the moment he set pede in its sacred resting place…
Had known it would call to him with barely there voices.
Optimus could still hardly believe that it was his now, carried beside his spark casing and treasured more highly then his own life. He did not resent that, he of all mechs and femmes on this planet now knew just what it was and how truly irreplaceable it was!
But the High Lord Protector had no such help, so how had he known? That question had stolen his thought processes for the first orn or so, while he was being pampered and measured and decked out as befitted the new Prime. Young or not, he was now the leader of the planet, only rivaled by the High Lord Protector…
“You are the one that has sent me gifts… all through the vorns. You are the one who encouraged me to do things nobles normally don’t do! You’ve always been there.” The ‘why’ was not spoken, it did not need to be spoken. Optimus could not understand why anyone as powerful and important as Megatron would find him interesting.
He was so deep in his memories that he didn’t notice the larger mech getting up and approaching him. When warm hands closed around his shoulders he started and craned his head around to look up and behind. A calm smile, far more genuine then those he had seen for the last three orns, made the thin grey dermas looked far less cold and uncompromising.
“I met you once… Long ago, you spent a joor curled up in my lap, listening to me reading you a report. It was hard to forget such a charming mechling.” The hands traveled down slowly, along his arms, leaving a tingling feeling behind.
“I had to see how you developed and the more I saw the more I wanted to be a part of your life. The High Lord Protector cannot afford to make such connections to a noble family, especially not one with such an ambitious politician for a patriarch.” They reached his elbow joints and shifted lightly, encasing his forearms without any trouble. He was shivering violently, not at all sure where this was going.
“And then you grew up… All that beauty your cute little sparkling frame had promised blossomed from one upgrade to another. I admit my wishes change a little with that, but I could still not reasonably approach you without causing harm to the political balance.” And now the hands disappeared from his frame, leaving him more shaky then before and suddenly very cold.
The dark hands returned, pulling the heavy, soft mesh fabric of the crimson cape of the High Lord Protector office with them.
“You are shivering…” The murmur was heavy with promise and Optimus was sure something would happen, but nothing did… “I had no choice but to manipulate a situation that would allow us to meet, having the Matrix recognize you was a bonus… a blessing more profound than I could have ever asked for, would have dared ask for.” So close now! He could feel the dermas against his own plating, or at least imagined that he could. He was leaning against the warm plating of the other mech’s chest… his legs seemed to be slowly giving out under him.
“The High Lord Protector and the Prime are most often lovers… very often Bonded. I make no demands, young counterpart, but I~” The words were swallowed in a kiss, Optimus had been unable to wait any longer.
He understood… maybe. Understood the promise of desire, and possibly more. It did scare him, but he would need the High Lord Protector, need to trust him…
Need him to be his protector.