Full of Surprises
Eclipse and Solstice
Solstice sighed, looking around the sad streets of the large stone city. Having come to deliver some special orders to the school house, she found Oracle - a close friend and old teacher - beside herself. The tribute festival had just past and rumour were already spreading from what happened. Oracle explained everything, leaving Solstice worried.
Bloodshed taking Thornstriker was one thing, something she had come to find adorable the way they both interacted and how much Bloodshed loved her friend. Blurr's abduction was cruel, horrible and damaging to her mentor, leaving her own nerves shot. But for Megatron, King of the shadows and ruler of Kaon, the literal opposite to King Optimus, had taken Eclipse? Why?
The shock of the event was still raw, many walking around the city listful, worried or outright paranoid. If one monster could do this, what would stop another? If this happened before she reunited with Drift and Perceptor, she askewed veiws would've hardened like concrete, but having known them, Thornstriker and Bloodshed, there had to be a reason behind it.
"S-Solstice?" cooed a familiar voice. Skidding to a halt, Solstice looked back to find Red Moon running up to her. She was Eclipse's younger sister. Her heart lurched, poor girl must've seen everything given the bags under her eyes and the tear stains from crying.
"Hey Moon," she couldn't apologise nor ask what was wrong, both answers she already knew.
"C-Can you see Papa? He needs help and well, Eclipse always said you'd help her right?" it was true, having know her since she started her life as a courier, before moving to the main headquarters of the couriers a city over, Solstice always promised to help Eclipse, and by extension, her family.
"Sure thing! Lead on," a smile always helped, Solstice made sure she put a big one on for Red Moon, hoping it would cheer her up even a little. The young girl smiled back, a sad smile but it brightened her dark face while leading her to their home. She had only passed it a couple of times, given she would deliver messages for Airstrike to Eclipse while she was at work. Entering the small home was different. It was simple, larger than the home she lived in with the weaver's orphanage, but it was homey. Love seemed to go into everything on display.
Smokebomb, Eclipse's brother, wasn't in the room but a feint sound seemed from come from one of the far off rooms. Radar was no doubt in her room resting, the poor woman was quite often sick given the medicine she would sometimes deliver while Airstrike sat at the table, head in hands and worrying.
"Papa, Papa I got Solstice for you," Red Moon walked up to the sullen man. His eyes were are dark as Red Moon's, sunken and devoid of tears. Solstice could sympathise; though not having family to miss, she went through the same pains with Thornstriker and Blurr.
"Ah yes, thank you dear," bringing his young daughter close, kissing her head he turned to Solstice. "Go see your brother...and check on your mother. Make sure she gets her medicine." Nodding, Red Moon ran out while leaving the pair alone. "Hello Solstice."
"Hello Sir," What could she say? They were all suffering, she didn't want to say anything that could offend or upset them. Instead, doing the only thing she could, Solstice approached the man and, to his surprise, gave him a hug. "I know it hurts, I know how you feel." The older man lasted only a moment when his tears flooded back, latching onto Solstice as he released his pain. Solstice, welcoming, held the grieving man until he got through everything. "It isn't easy."
"T-Thank you," Airstrike composed himself, sniffling and wiping the tears from his eyes while moving aside to get something. Solstice turned to see an angry looking Smokebomb standing in the doorway, Red Moon disappearing into another.
"How would you know?!" he snapped, glaring at the older woman. "How the hell could you know how we feel?!!"
"Smokebomb, that's enough!" Airstrike snapped, but knew his son better than that. It had been like this the last few days.
"No! Everyone says they understand!! That they're sorry for our loss! But they did nothing when that...that MONSTER took our sister!!~" More and more tears rained from his eyes, glaring down Solstice as if she were the cause of it. "They did nothing!! They don't understand anything!! And neither do you!!"
"Smokebomb...please," came a feint voice, all turned to Red Moon supporting her mother, helping her to the table. Smokebomb wanted to scream, wanted to keep screaming but stood shocked as Solstice approached him.
"I do know. I lost people to the tribute festival and to the monsters. I can't describe the feelings, but they claw and latch onto you, drag you into a dark pit you can't get out of," looking him in the eyes, his own widened. She actually understood? "But you can't let that pit swallow you up, nothing is what it seems and you just...have to hope. Hope she'll be able to come back and that she's okay."
"That is partly why I asked Red Moon to fetch you," looking to Airstrike, leaving Smokebomb a little surprised and quiet, the older man handed over a small scroll and a tightly bound parcel. "I know travelling to Kaon is dangerous, for anyone, but Eclipse told us if anyone could...it would be you."
"Never thought she had that much confidence in me," Solstice remarked, smiling a little. "No doubt cause I'm too stubborn?" Airstrike turned away, no doubt thinking if he admitted the truth she'd take offence. "She's right though, and I'll do it...for her and for you." His surprise and joy were infectuous, each member gaining a small smile as she took the package from him. Red Moon, showing her first genuine smile in days ran up to her, bounding into a hug.
"Please, tell sister we all miss her! That we love her so much, and we hope she can come home!" Red Moon beamed, her tears falling not in sadness but in joy, desperately trying to speak out everthing she wanted her sister to know.
"You bet I will," Solstice smile, turning in surprise when Radar somehow found the courage and stand on her own and approached Solstice. Refusing help from Smokebomb and Airstrike, she moved to remove a necklace from around her neck. It was a simple piece, looking like a small charm with its sutble leaf design and single inset stone. Her cold hands placed the piece in Solstice, wrapping her thin fingers around them.
"Tell Eclipse, how proud we are. How much we love and miss her, and...how I can never repay her kindness," her own tears welled up, leaning forward farther than Solstice was comfortable with. Eclipse had mentioned how sick her mother was, and the way she was leaning she thought Radar was about to collapse. Catching her, she discovered the woman merely wished to hug her too. "And you, you are so kind and brave to do this for us."
"Hey, family of my friends...are family to me too," Solstice smiled, returning the hug. "To be honest, I thought you were going to...well." Radar smiled, looking over to a strange crystal decanter shaped bottle.
"Megatron, when he...took my daughter, promised to send medicine. So she wouldn't worry. I can feel my strength returning but...without my daughter..." tears welled again, leaning back against Red Moon and Smokebomb as she was taken to her chair. "I'm sorry, the state of me..." Solstice shook her head, smiling all the while.
"It's alright, you just rest up and get well. Wouldn't want to miss Eclipse if...when she gets back," positivity was always something hard for Solstice, especially with her similar experiences, but often times its what people needed to hear to keep going. "I'll just need to report in before I deliver this, I should be back in about a week." Airstrike nodded, understanding she still had her job to do.
Waving goodbye, Solstice took off from the house and made her long trip back to her city. She knew her guildmaster was not going to like this, nor was Perceptor or Drift. Drift had warned her numerous times about Kaon, about his time there and redicovering himself at the Oni temple in the northern mountains. But she made a promise, and nothing was going to stop her.
"You WHAT?!!" Guildmaster Crashmeter snapped, causing many in the room to jump. "Why in Primus' name would you take a job in KAON?! Of all fragging places?!!"
"For a friend, Crash," Solstice snapped, going through her things and packing what she needed for her trip.
"Friend my backside! You have no friends in Kaon and no one in the free cities would have ANYTHING to do with that hellhole!!" Crahsmeter growled, pacing and snarling about while Solstice ignored him. "Speedzone, Turbocharge, talk some sense into your friend please!!"
Two others looked up from their table. The girl had short black cropped hair, more slender than Solstice wearing teal and black. The boy, taller than both of them with messy orange and yellow hair dressed in blue, red and white. Both looked at each other and shrugged.
"She wouldn't take the job if she knew she couldn't do it," Speedzone shrugged.
"And there's no point telling her otherwise," Turbocharge added.
Leaving Crashmeter scowling and angered more.
"Look, if I'm not back in a week, then you can say 'I told you so' also..." Solstice slung her pack over her shoulders before looking to her friends. "No you can not have my house or my stuff if I die!" Both groaned, whining out of the joke before wishing her well. Placing the scroll and parcel in her pack, Solstice wondered if she should go to Perceptor and Drift first. It was in the opposite direction to Kaon and would make her trip longer, but she needed to tell them in case...No, if she told them they would stop her from going. She knew Perceptor would use his webs and Drift could more than easily overpower her.
No. She had to go now, before her nerves won out over her.
The trip proved faster since she bought passage onto a caravan. Easily saving her a day over the three it took her to get there. Too bad she couldn't fly, flying would've only taken a few hours rather than days. Still, coming through the dark and drearie city, it wasn't that much different than the capital.
Sure the slums on the lower levels were dirty and festering like any other, beggers and drug users passed out on the streets lined with piss, vomit and...other questionable fluids. Prostitutes and whores stood on corners, luring willing partners away and down back streets for a turn. That was her first stop.
"Well hello gorgeous~" purred a feminant man. Solstice could see he or rather she kept herself well groomed and in decent appearence. Draped in little more than a top and short open skirt, she eyed her too. "Care to take a ride? I'll even thrown in the first romp for free~" Shaking her head, keeping her pack close, Solstice pulled out a small pouch of coins. Even here in Kaon, gold was gold no matter who or what was printed on it.
"How about information instead, double your price," handing over the pouch, she snatched from Solstice's hands and quickly counted the amount, weight it to be sure.
"My lips are loose~ What do you wanna know sugar?" she asked, leaning against the wall.
"I'm looking for a woman by the name of Eclipse, I know she was brought here by Megatron but I don't know the city very well. You obviously do, know any quick routes?" Solstice looked perplexed when the woman laughed.
"Honey, you're gonna needs wings to see the queen, and a miracle. Lord Megatron doesn't let ANYONE near her now, not after ol'Bastard Prime tried to tear up their wedding," the woman's laughter died out, watching shock cross Solstice face.
"Queen? Married?! When did this happen?" Solstice choked. Megatron had married Eclipse? But she had been gone only a week at least!
"Happened the day after they returned from the north, big parties and everything. But on the day of the wedding, some spider bitch tried to abduct poor Queen Eclipse, right as she was going down the eisle."
"Little bitch deserved it," scoffed another voice. Looking over, Solstice saw a skinny succubus, looking like she hadn't eaten in days. Her hair was limp, her face sucken and her scowl only twisting it more. "You ask me, Megatron could do way better than that little strumpet."
"Careful Signs, you know Megatron would kill you for that. Besides, you're only jealous cause he doesn't come down here anymore to bang you into a wall," the prostitute scoffed, looking back to Solstice. "Some round here love the new queen while others, like walking stick over there, think she's too weak or low for someone like Megatron to have."
"Well then you don't know Eclipse very well then," Solstice stated, glaring at the succubus. Signs just grumbled, complaining about hunger pains and moved on.
"Look, like I said you're going to need wings and a miracle to get to her. The last guard I...served," she chuckled, recounting that fond memory, "Had muttered something about new rounds for the gargoyle guards around the north tower, that tall one over looking the city. Said that Megatron is too paranoid about Prime's allies in the city he's placed her up there." Looking to where she pointed, Solstice saw the tower. It was old and some parts looked worn. It was a risk but at least she knew where to go next.
"Thanks, and here, for the trouble," Solstice handed another small pouch with a smile, before running off down the street and scaling a wall to the buildings roof. The prostitue stared a moment but turned to smile, licking her lips.
"Too bad, would've been a wild ride~"
Watching as the shadows blocked part of the tower, Solstice weighed out her options. She could 1) approach the king directly and state her business, which could lead to her being branded a spy or ally of Optimus and get killed. 2) ask or bribe a guard or flight capable citizen to get her to the top, while they turn to their master and rat her out, leading to her imprisonment or death. Or 3) Scale the tower herself, fall to her death and die. No bright prospects here. However the tower didn't look completely smooth. There where key stones lining th tower as well as some perches for the flying guards to sit on during their posts. That would be her way up.
Keeping to the shadows, cursing her own stubborness and weighing her options again, Solstice slapped some of her climbing chalk on her hands from her pack before starting her climb. So long as a guard didn't try and attack her as she climbed she'd be fine. In fact, keeping to the shadows seemed to help as the gargoyles appeared nearsighted during the day. One had looked straight at her, her breath stilling as he stared, before shrugging and turning away. She prayed to Primus each time she grabbed a keystone, going higher and higher until she reached the balcony.
Now like many a novice, they would try to push off the wall and grab the furthest point from them on the balcony piece, that would lead to iminent death given the sheer difficulty of the move. Instead, she shimmied to the right and climbed up the side of the balcony and climbed up.
Once on solid ground, Solstice released a sigh of relief. Her legs shook, her fingers ached and her head spun. But she made it to the top.
"Who...whose there?" called a voice, coming to open the balcony doors. Walking through, Solstice gasped as Eclipse stepped out. Wrapped in a stunning lavender gown that pooled around her slippered feet. It was encrusted with ringlets of silver and set with rich rubies. Wow, she really was a Queen. "S-Solstice?"
"H-hey Eclipse, how..." Solstice gasped as Eclipse slammed into her. Braced by the strong balcony, Solstice looked surprised as Eclipse hugged her. That was usually the other way around. She would be the one starting the hug, not Eclipse. Then something wet dropped onto her chest. Eclipse...was crying?
"I-idiot..." Eclipse choked, looking up. "W-Why would you climb a tower this high?! Y-you could've fallen!" Her shock disappeared as the Eclipse she knew came through.
"Aw come on Eclipse, you know me. I love to push the limits," Solstice joked, watching as her motherly anger and worry turned to giggles and laughter. Both shared the laughter as Eclipse ushered her in, both unaware of a guard overhearing them.
"But really Solstice, why are you here?" Eclipse asked, offering her friend a chair.
"Actually..." taking off her pack, Solstice pulled out the letter and parcel, handing both to Eclipse. "That's from your family. Red Moon caught me on a run and your dad...well, you could say they're all in mourning."
Quick as a flash, Eclipse opened the scroll. Tears welled as she read loving and saddening words. Her family really missed her, and none of them seemed to know about...
"Yeah...um...I heard down the grapevine that you're...the Queen?" Solstice watched as Eclipse placed the scroll down, tears rolling down her heated cheeks. "Sorry."
"No no...it's...it's okay,"She cooed, taking a small handkerchief from the bedside table and dabbing her tears away. "It was...unexpected for me too."
"Did he...he force you?" Solstice came to sit with Eclipse on the bed, placing an arm around her for comfort.
"Yes...n-no..." Eclipse sighed, there was no way to really explain it. She loved Megatron, but the fear of incuring his wrath seemed to be the only thing keeping her from doing something. From telling him how she felt. "It's complicated."
"Well...I'll stay until its not complicated anymore, okay?" Solstice smiled, bringing a bright look to her friend. "You mustn't get a lot of company up here, and my hands hurt too much to try and climb back down, so I have time to kill." Eclipse loved the idea, wanted the company of someone she considered a friend but the thought of Megatron finding her, of what he might do. But Solstice was always careful, no one would've seen her if she didn't want them to. They would have at least a few hours before Megatron was due to return.
"Okay...thanks Solstice," Eclipse smiled, but watched as she remembered something. Reaching back into her pack, Solstice pulled out Radar's necklace, lacing it around Eclipse's neck much to her own surprise.
"Your mother wanted you to have this...and to let you know that she's proud, that she loves you and misses you. She's getting stronger from the medicine sent to them and she hopes you'll come back soon." Eclipse couldn't hold it back, her tears barreled from her eyes, latching onto Solstice as she welcomed her. Taking all the comfort she could give, the pair sat and chattered like nothing had happened.
But a loud thunk caused them to jump, Eclipse pushed aside as Solstice rose above her. Pressure wound around her neck, cutting off air and blood to her brain. Struggling to breath, her hands grasped a large black hand, eyes wides as they connected the hand to an arm, and an arm to a body.
Megatron's aura licked and wafted around him, his anger rising as this woman struggled in his grip. How dare she intrude on his wife's abode. How dare she come here.
"No!! Megatron please stop!!!" Eclipse begged, watching as he strode out, holding Solstice over the edge of the balcony.
"Optimus should've learnt by now what happens when he sends his wretches here! To my CITY!!" his anger tightened his grip, despite his intensions to drop her, but the soft grip on his free arm turned him to a frantic Eclipse.
"No! No! Please!! Solstice is my friend!! S-she's a courier!! She was delivering me a message from my family!! It's there on the bed~!" Eclipse begged, pointing to her parcel and her family's note. "She didn't so anything wrong!! She's my friend please don't kill her!!!"
He would take his wife's word, no one would doubt that. But he drew doubt from her so called friend. He recalled she named a friend Solstice, but he had found and taken care of so many of Optimus' agents, whose to say he wouln't turn to her own friends to trick her or him.
Solstice was struggling harder, her desperation for air kicking her legs and trying to claw his touch skin. It was futile for her to escape, and he was done with these games. As Eclipse begged, he pulled her away from the balcony but instead slammed her head into the wall. Bricks shifted behind her, enough for blood to erupt from her mouth. Eclipse shrieked, moving forward to stop him but his tail wrapped around her waist and pinned her back.
"Who sent you? Answer or die," Megatron hissed, relieving his grip only a touch to allow her speech.
"A-Air.,..s-stri...ke..." Solstice coughed, choking as his grip didn't allow much air through.
"Did Optimus arrange this? Is he still trying to steal my wife?!" Megatron snapped, Airstrike could've been used by the Prime, turning him to an ally to get passage into his citadel.
"N...N...o, I'm...just t-trying...to...d-do my...job!" Solstice coughing and struggling voice was only fueling Eclipse's ferious cries and running tears.
"Please!! Megatron stop it!! You're killing her!! Please don't kill Solstice!!" she begged, she pleaded, but his grip remained firm.
"Not until she tells me the truth," he growled, turning to his wife. Her eyes were red, puffy and and pouring tears, her lips pulled back in shock and horror. Her arms flailing and struggling against his tight grip. Optimus is a cunning one to use someone seemingly close to his wife, but he would have nothing of it. Looking back, he watched as Solstice started turning blue, oxygen deprived to too long, her limbs were growing weak as were her own struggles. Eyes rolling back into her head, she could feel the last of her strength slipping.
"No!!! SOLSTICE!!!!" Eclipse screamed, reaching out as Megatron's grip cost her the last of her oxygen. Eclipse had feared this, feared Megatron would lash out not only at her but at her friends. Why had she told her to stay? Why didn't she tell her to leave?! For her own safety, and now...
Eclipse stopped struggling, slumping to the floor as her tears never ceased, leaving Megatron at a crossroads. Friends they might've been, but he refused to allow anything to take his wife.
Suddenly, the body in his hand jerked. Looking back, his own surprised caught a ripple of golden light before a force sent him back. Looking down, burning prints singed his clothing, patted down as he looked up. Small horn, four in total, poked from out of the human's golden hair. Eyes wide and ablaze, fire liking from them as her body calmed. Golden scales slide out from beneath her skin. All in a moment it ended, the changes permanent as her body crumpled and fell to the ground.
"SOLSTICE!!" Eclipse shrieked, ignoring Megatron as she ran to her friend's side. This was something Megatron had never seen before. Such a change was...unheard of. Eclipse fretted over her friend, patting down the flames still licking from her skin before she had put them out. Turned on her front, Eclipse checked her pulse and placed her head to her chest to hear if her heart was still beating. In the end, she felt the small beat against her ear and the pulse between her fingers.
A groan drew her attention, Solstice slowly came to. Looking up, her blinking beady eyes focused and suddenly...she could see everything. The detail in each ruby, the finery of her purple silk dress, each individual strand of hair on her head. Solstice blinked, clearing her mind as she tried to regain mobility.
“Eclipse? ...what …?” Solstice rolled and lolled in her arms until she could get some kind of stability. Helped to her feet, Eclipse suddenly jumped in front of her, causing her to catch the bed while Eclipse blocked Megatron’s path.
“Don’t touch her!!” Eclipse snapped, standing her ground and keeping Megatron from a recovering Solstice. “Don’t you dare touch her!!” she hissed. “She was just doing what she’s great at! She’s a courier!! She isn’t going to steal me away and she isn’t a threat to you!!” Megatron stared at his wife in surprise. She was so fervent, protecting this girl he hadn’t seen before. Turning to her, this Solstice held her head, blinking her eyes and taking in everything that had happened. Blood dotted her fingers, no doubt from his own claws pericing his neck. Solstice coughed, her throat still sore from her strangling. Eclipse came to her side, only now noticing the horns atop her head.
“Solstice?” confused, looking to Megatron for answers only to find he had none.
“What?” running her hands up, her eyes widened as she came to brush against the horns. Looking down, her eyes darted across the golden scales now dotting her skin. What happened to her? Did Megatron do this? "W-what's happened to me? What's going on?!!!"
Jumping to her feet, Megatron reacted by pulling Eclipse away from her. Eclipse struggled, wanting to help her friend in this strange change, but Megatron proved too strong and held her close as Solstice grew more panicked by her change.
"Guards!!" Megatron shout drew his men fast, even calling Starscream and Shockwave to the small room. The Stimfalide bird flapped into the room while the wendigo skillfully scaled the tower faster than even Solstice did, both standing tall behind their master. Starscream looked shocked at the sight of this...freak. Shockwave, however, looked intrigued. This was something no one had even seen before. "Capture her, ensure she's restrained and take her to the dungeons!"
"No Megatron!! Please! Stop this!!" Eclipse struggled, tried to break away from Megatron but the Demon King pulled her back with him, letting the guards move forward with Starscream and Shockwave observing. Solstice, however, looked to the guards in panic. One lunged forward, reaching to grab hold of her arm only...for Solstice to throw him across the room. Eclipse gasped, what happened? How did she do that? Even Solstice was surprised, shocked more over as she scrambled back. Another guard lunged at her, only for Solstice to dodge, skitting away from them.
"Eclipse?!!" she screamed, moving away from the guards while dodging Starscream and Shockwave, proving difficult due to the small space.
"Please!! Starscream! Shockwave! Please don't hurt her!! Leave her alone!!" Eclipse shrieked, reaching out despite Megatron's strong grip. Starscream managed to swipe his claws across Solstice's front. However, his pained screeched revealed her scales had continued growing, covering most of her chest.
"Intriguing," Shockwave mused, leaping from the walls to tackle Solstice. His wendigo strength easily pinned the human down, what he hadn't encountered was, in her panic, her body erupted in flames again. A wendigo's only weakness. His shriek echoed around the room, Megatron shielding Eclipse from the panicking, burning human. As the flames died, leaving her unharmed and further shocked and worry. Eclipse's own worry reached a breaking point, Solstice was panicking with her sudden change, and having witnessed Megatron technically killing her by strangulation, there was no telling what might happen to her now that Starscream and Shockwave entered the fray. Making her choice, Eclipse bit down on Megatron's arm, sinking enough to cause the Demon lord to flinch. Slipping from his grip, she ran forward to Solstice.
"Solstice!" Eclipse reached her just as Starscream attempted his new chance. But he couldn't stop, he would reach Eclipse as she stood protecting Solstice.
A loud crash from the tower turned the attention of everyone of the ground. Bombrush had been notified of Megatron's urgent matter in Eclipse's tower as well as his recent shout drawing Starscream, Shockwave and guards to the tower. But looking up at the newest development, something was thrown through the glass balcony doors and off the balcony.
"GUARDS!!!" Bombrush could see Megatron soaring from the towers, watching the falling projectile, gaping as he recognised the familiar flutter of purple.
"Men!! Save the Queen!! Don't let her fall to her death!!!" Bombrush ordered, many of his winged soldiers took wing and few to the falling queen, only to find she was held by another. Ignoring the other, the guards managed to slow their decent, bringing both safely to the ground. Eclipse, cradled close to this blonde woman, groaned as she opened her eyes. Starscream had tackled them, with enough force to send her flying. Wait...Solstice!!
Eclipse looked next to her, sitting up to find Solstice panting, her eyes wide and shaking. The last she recalled was Solstice trying to block Starscream's attack, latching onto her as they fell to...to protect her. After all of this, after all the trouble she was put through, she still tried to...
"Your majesty!!" Bombrush ran to her, his men keeping the citizens back as he tended to her. Brought to her feet, he watched surprised as Eclipse turned and helped the other with her. He watched the other stand; a woman about mid 20s, dark bronze to golden hair and...he took a double take at the sight of strange golden scales along parts of her skin, her eyes wide with slited pupils, four horns crowning her head from beneath her hair and nails elongating. "Your majesty?"
"Solstice, Solstice its okay," Eclipse helped her up, holding her and calming the younger woman. "I won't let them hurt you, I won't let them I promise."
"N-no...Eclipse I..." a loud thud turned heads to Megatron. His eyes blazing and his aura looming over, stalking forward. "I better go, I don't want you getting in trouble over me." Pulling her into a hug, Eclipse could still feel Solstice shaking. She was scared, very scared. "I-I'll tell your parents you're okay, I'll tell them you're okay..." her words shook, watching as Megatron drew closer. "I-I better..." Eclipse nodded, watching Solstice dodge the guards and ran down the streets. With the growing crowds, she ricocheted off a wall and took to the rooftops.
"Stop her! I want that freak captured!!!" Megatron ordered, storming forward and scaring his men off after Solstice. Looming over Eclipse, he knelt down and checked her over. "Are you okay? Are you hurt?" Eclipse couldn't believe him! He had almost killed her friend, demanded her capture after accusing her of something she had not done or wasn't apart of and refused to let her go. Bombrush watched the pair, something was going on and he knew Megatron had no doubt overreacted.
Eclipse remained quiet, keeping eye contact away from his eyes and remaining still. Sighing, Megatron clung to her, raising her into his arm and moved back to the citadel. Bombrush, without needing to be asked, coordinated the guards but come up empty. A post reported the golden woman had feld the city, somehow out running most and bolting into the wilds. Another reported seeing her head north, no doubt fleeing to the border. Patrols were sent out to the border in order to capture her, hopefully making something of the situation.
Walking back to the citadel, loud shouts could be heard from the throne room. Coming closer, the shouts distinguished to Megatron and Eclipse. Ah, lover's quarrel. A sight to see. Bombrush groaned, keeping out but staying close to hear just what happened up there in the tower.
"How could you do that?" Eclipse asked, tears rolling from her eyes. "Why? Why did you do that? She was my friend."
"I was protecting you!! Why can't you see that?!" Megatron growled, pacing the room while she sat on his throne. "She could've been sent by Optimus! Just like all the others trying to take you from me. I won't allow that to happen."
"But she wasn't trying to!" Eclipse shouted, standing from the throne and approached her husband. "She's a courier! My family wanted to send something to me and she is a good friend to do that for them! She only stayed because I asked her too" Eclipse flinched as Megatron approached. "If she said she's never seen Optimus, she was telling the truth. Solstice would never lie!"
"Optimus could sway her, he always has!" Megatron seethed, "It isn't beneath him to try!"
"But Solstice wouldn't!" Eclipse stressed. "And what happened to her?"
"Impossible to say, but once my men bring that freak back, Shockwave will run tests to figure out just what that freak is," a sudden slap caught his attention, looking down Eclipse repeatedly tried to punch him. He was surprised Eclipse would do this.
"Solstice is not a freak!! She's my friend!" her punchs slowed, losing their strength as her sobs grew. "She's my friend, and you scared her away. She...she'll never come back now. I'll never get to see her again...because of you..." her legs gave out, slumping to her knees and sobbed in her hands. Megatron looked on, he wanted her to understand. But her own connection with this girl was only making the matter worse. Instead, he called her harpie attendants, instructing them to return her to her room so she could calm down and relax.
Slipping the crying queen from the throne room, Megatron sighed. He just wanted to keep her safe, there were many that would want to take her from him.
"Megatron," looking up, Megatron rolled his eyes as Bombrush walked into the throne room. He knew what was coming. "Well, you failed that nicely."
"Not now Bombrush. Unless you've come to tell me you've captured the freak, I don't want to hear it." Megatron moved to leave but found is path blocked by the General.
"You upset your wife, chased off someone she considered a friend, someone who had risked herself to journey here and scaled a damn tower to give her something from her family, and now you're going to capture her, drag her back here and experiment on her. This is something you need to hear." Bombrush glared.
Much to Megatron's relief, a guard ran through the doors towards the pair.
"General Bombrush, My King. The woman just crossed the border, somehow she gained enough speed to...outrun our men. She's back in the northern lands." The soldier feared what might happen, given the tense state Megatron was in, Bombrush however stepped forward.
"Organise searches, descretely so not to draw attention. Our king wants this girl found," Bombrush ordered, but Megatron moved against it.
"Summon Shockwave to me. We have much to discuss," the guard turned pale, knowing just how a wounded Wendigo acted. Fearing his king more, the guard ran off to find the lich hunter.
"And the pit of your mistakes grows. Eclipse will never forgive you if you hurt her friend," Bombrush warned, but Megatron only growled as he waited for his scientist to come forward. Not long after did Shockwave return, his wounds patched and healing.
"I live to serve, my lord. How might I aid you?" Shockwave asked, bowing low before the great demon king. Stepping forward, Megatron held out a single claw. Shockwave took a small vial and, carefully, extracted the small sample of blood from his master.
"This...freak, is not a human nor any creature I've seen. Can you make something of that?" Megatron watched as his keen eyes inspected the vial.
"This should be enough for a few of my tests, but I will require a...larger sample for a better analysis." Megatron nodded, turning with Bombrush to organise search groups and ensure Solstice is found.
Solstice gasped and panted. How long had she been running? When had the guards stopped chasing her? She didn't know but she didn't care either. She just wanted to feel safe again. She bolted into the webwood, taking no notice of the arachne fleeing as she ran. Coming close to the end, her eyes beamed and she lips curled into a smile of relief. The shrine came into view as exhaustion and fatigue swiftly took all strength in her legs. Solstice collapsed, slamming hard into the ground just feet from the shrine door.
"Whose there?!" called a voice, looking up she smiled as Drift came through the door. "Who...Solstice?!"
"D-Drift...I...I..." the last of her strength slipped away and she fell unconscious. Perceptor soon came out with a lantern, watching Drift run out to tend to Solstice. Shining the lantern high, both gasped at her change.
"What...what happened to her?!" Perceptor panicked, unaware his cry had awoken Gadget. The little spiderling skittered out, tired and sleepy, but seeing his mother lying on the ground - regardless of her new scales and horns - he cried out and ran to her side, chirping and squeaking, begging for her to wake up. " Hurry, bring her inside," Perceptor could see the arachnes of the woods approaching. Scooping up his worried son, Drift managed to easily pluck Solstice from the ground and brought her inside. It was going to be a long night.
After a long night of planning patrols and searches far into the north, Megatron rose above the city to join his wife in bed. Landing as softly as his bulk would allow, Megatron grasped the doors only to find they didn't open. Strange, he tried a little harder but still they would not open. A curtain on the inside was snagged from the shaking door, revealing something blocking the door.
Eclipse, somehow, barricaded herself in her room. Megatron growled, recalling Bombrush's warning. How he hated when his general was right. Eclipse was truely upset about this. And the best thing to do, or at least what he learnt, was to let her be for now. Let her calm enough that they could talk. Instead of forcing his way in, Megatron took to the wing again, leaving for the citadel.
Within, Eclipse lay curled in her bed. Tears staining her eyes. Her rest would be most restless.
"Please...Primus. Please let Solstice be safe...and mother...and father...and...oh," Eclipse sobbed quietly. "I just...want to go home..."