Amy had let Stylor measure her for outfits that would show her status as a member of his House. “I’m surprised you could translate my measurements into Nebulan units,” she giggled. “Then again, I guess I’m like a doll for you.”
“Hardly,” assured Stylor. “A doll’s clothes are crudely made. I will not allow such crudeness on one my wife considers a sister.”
“You honor me with your words,” thanked Amy.
“Just speaking the truth,” replied Stylor. He then finished entering her measurements into his spreadsheet. “There, that ought to do it,” he mused. “Amy, trust me when I say, when it comes to keeping warm, NOTHING beats Samfa wool undergarments. If you ever change your mind about the earmuffs, I’ll have them on hold for you.” When he mentioned holding the earmuffs, the intercom buzzed and Trema’s voice came through.
“Stylor, sweetie,” she called, “I need to see you in the drawing room. Bring your tailor’s kit. Make sure Amy does NOT listen in.” Stylor and Amy looked at each other in confusion.
“Okay, what does she NOT want me to listen in on?” asked Amy.
“I guess you will NEVER find out,” chuckled Stylor as he picked up Amy and his tailor’s kit. He place Amy on his shoulder and headed to the drawing room. Once they were at the door, he set her back down. “You will NOT wait here,” he joked.
“Understood,” she replied. Stylor entered the room and shut the door. “Audite,” whispered Amy as she pointed to her ears. They tingled a bit and she could hear the conversation going on in the drawing room. Spasma was visiting.
“I want to be measured for a new dress,” directed Spasma.
“…Now?” asked Stylor.
“Right now,” replied Spasma.
“My clothes are NOT cheap,” warned Stylor.
“They’re affordable,” assured Spasma, “with my new Traboon salary.”
“Wait,” hissed Trema. “I heard about what happened yesterday! You start a fight in the GEPHMR, then get promoted?! What kind of system is that?!”
“I had to make it up to Zarak,” answered Spasma. “What with organizing a little invasion to assist our Decepticon allies.”
“Invasion?” repeated Stylor.
“That rock, Earth,” replied Spasma. “Wait, no, it has a new name. What is it? Ah, yes, Mobius! The Decepticon Headmasters are going to invade it, suppress the population, strip mine it, and then use the resources to build up the Decepticon Empire.”
“I think I have everything I need,” finished Stylor. “Could you tell me which dress style you would like?”
“Number 8 would be splendid,” answered Spasma. Amy had heard enough and ran for the Retranga, where Natalie and Sira were spending some time together.
Sira and Natalie were dancing on the Retranga’s bridge, slowly and closely. If one listened closely, one could hear their skirts rustling against one another. No music was needed for their dance. As they danced, they got closer until their lips made contact. Their kiss reinvigorated their bond that they’ve shared for ages. As they broke off the kiss, they curtsied to each other and headed arm-in-arm off to their quarters. As they walked, they heard hurried footsteps. “If that’s not the sound of Amy’s boots,” mused Sira, “then I’m not a Witch.”
“Well, you are,” replied Natalie, “and that sound IS coming from Amy’s boots. There she is now.” Amy burst onto the bridge and looked panicked.
“Guys! We have to call the Autobots!” she wailed.
“What?!” yelped Sira.
“There’s an invasion of Mobius being planned!” replied Amy as she jumped onto the Communications console. She used various spells to operate the console. “This is Amy Rose contacting the Autobots on Mobius! Optimus! Ratchet! Teletraan! Respond!” Optimus and Teletraan’s avatar came up on the screen.
“Amy!” cheered Optimus. “Good to hear from you again! We’ve missed you here!”
“Are you ready to return?” asked Teletraan.
“No! Far from it!” countered Amy. She then told Optimus what she overheard.
“An invasion?!” yelped Optimus. “Why would the Nebulans invade Mobius?!”
“A demonstration of power,” guessed Sira.
“They don’t have the resources!” protested Optimus.
“Then why plan an invasion if they don’t?” quizzed Natalie.
“Ladies,” interjected Teletraan, “is the Retranga still at Trema’s estate?”
“Yeah, why?” quizzed Amy.
“In the Folassian Forest?” continued Teletraan.
“…Yes…” confirmed Amy.
“There’s an Autobot stationed there,” explained Teletraan. “A Metrotitan by the name of Fortress Maximus with a partner named Cerebros who’s the basis of all Headmasters. You have to find him! Convince him to stop this invasion!”
“He’s right, we can’t deal with an invasion,” supplied Optimus. “We have enough trouble being harassed by Nemesis Prime!”
“He’s back?!” yelped Amy.
“And Nemesis Prime is…?” asked Sira.
“Here’s the summary,” began Optimus. “From an alternate reality where the Autobots are bad guys and Mobius, Moebius over there, is full of cowards trying to ruin the world. Evil Me landed, killed Evil Sonic and his ‘friends’ except for Evil Tails. Evil Me dies. Evil Tails wires himself into Evil Me’s chest and uses Evil Me’s body as his personal Mech suit. He commands the Evil Autobots and crossed over to our universe on Halloween one time, when we were celebrating our one year anniversary of our arrival on Mobius. We sent him back, but now he’s here, commanding our Decepticons in Megatron’s absence.”
“We’ll stop the invasion, if not delay it,” declared Amy. “Amy out.” The call ended.
“The Folassian Forest,” cried Natalie, “is large, even for Nebulans. We’ll never find this Fortress Maximus in time!”
“We need to, at least, try!” urged Amy. The instant she said that, the alarm rang. “WHAT NOW!?!” demanded Amy.
“All inhabitants, report to Galen’s room!” called Trema’s panicked voice. Amy, Sira, and Natalie turned into mist and flew towards Galen’s room. His EMPTY room!
“Where is he?!” yelped Stylor.
“Look!” called Amy. She pointed out a note. Trema picked it up and read it aloud.
“‘The Ministry of Science’,” she read “‘feels that it cannot, in good conscience, let Galen die. We have taken him to Vorath to undergo the binary-bonding process. Do not attempt to intervene or Galen will die of the Disease.’” Trema snarled. “They had no right!”
“Galen’s been kidnapped!” guessed Amy.
“VORATH, I ORDERED MEDICAL QUARANTINE!” roared Galen as Vorath dragged him over to an operating table.
“The Disease is not something to be taken lightly,” answered Vorath. “I cannot let someone like you die.”
“I will not be binary-bonded to Recoil!” struggled Galen. “Do you hear?! I WILL NOT!”
“Lord Zarak’s orders,” dismissed Vorath. “Nothing I can do.” He turned to his subordinates. “Sedate him.” Galen’s neck was stuck with a needle and he fell into a deep sleep. “Let’s begin,” chuckled Vorath. The process was a messy one, involving removing limbs, rearranging organs, and preparing nerve connections to the armor so he could still feel. Inside his mind, he was screaming for release. After what seemed like an eternity to him, his mind heard a voice.
“I see they’ve ignored your request,” sighed the voice. It was masculine and deep yet caring.
“STAY AWAY!” roared Galen. “I WILL NOT BOND WITH A DECEPTICON!”
“You haven’t,” assured the voice. Then, images flashed through his head. Images of Autobots receiving orders from him. Images of the Decepticons being defeated by him. Images of Recoil being destroyed.
“He’s…dead?” realized Galen. “But, then who…Cerebros?!”
“Bingo,” answered the voice. An Autobot that towered over him the same way normal Autobots tower over us stepped into view. He had a domed head and a visor over his optics and a grill on the front with the Autobot logo emblazoned proudly in the center. “I trust I haven’t put any stress to you?” quizzed the bot, Cerebros.
“Quite the contrary,” assured Galen, “my stress has gone down. However, I AM confused. Aren’t you Fortress Maximus’ Headmaster?”
“Indeed,” answered Cerebros. “However, we’ve decided that we cannot let Zarak bring this planet into conflict. As such, I disguised myself as Recoil and underwent the process to let you be MY Headmaster. Now, you control not only a Metrotitan’s Emissary, but the Metrotitan himself.”
“But, why you?” asked Galen. “Aren’t you a pacifist?” Cerebros sighed.
“Regretfully,” answered Cerebros, “my ideals will only get me killed. Black Scar, Zarak’s binary-bond partner, has risen again and is warping Nebulos through Zarak’s desires. In light of this, I cannot, in good conscience, allow such barbaric practices to occur while I stand idly by. However, I do not possess the warrior’s aptitude your people have. With your help, we may free Nebulos from the Decepticons. What say you?” Galen thought for a moment, then made his decision.
“Cerebros, we have a deal,” he declared.
After Amy, Sira, and Natalie told them about finding Fortress Maximus, Trema led them and Llyra through the Folassian Forest. They arrived at a massive city with weapons in rest mode. “Mighty Fortress!” called Trema. “This planet needs you!”
“Fortress?” asked Amy. “That’s Fortress Maximus?”
“Where is his smaller robot body?” quizzed Sira, remembering Metroplex.
“Not how it works,” answered Trema. After a few seconds of waiting, there was a distinct rumble. Lights around the city flashed on.
“Fortress Maximus,” called a booming voice, “heeds your words. Speak.”
“Fortress Maximus,” pleaded Trema, “my son has been kidnapped by Zarak and his minions! We need help!”
“I know of his kidnapping,” answered Fortress Maximus. “I have sent Cerebros to intervene.”
“Has he succeeded?!” asked Trema.
“Your son is now a Headmaster,” replied Fortress.
“…What?” she said weakly. She stumbled and managed to catch herself on a tree. “…Un mari…” (My baby) she whispered.
“That’s too far!” snarled Llyra. She then stormed off.
“Where are you going?” asked Amy.
“To get the materials needed for the Discommendation Ritual!” answered Llyra. “After which, Trema may safely take her revenge on my father and his cronies.”
“…The Council may disagree with you,” muttered Trema.
“I’ve compiled a list of my father’s crimes,” growled Llyra, “and have kept the Council up to date. They know of his dishonor. Originally, I wanted to prove to the Council that he could change, but I was mistaken to do so and believe such. My father and his minions are nothing more than honorless cowards and I will see to it that they are removed totally from Nebulan Society.”
“Thus, they will have no family, no refuge, no resource,” said Trema, explaining the consequences to her Witch Sisters. “They will be a pariah in Nebulan society.”
“Sounds pleasant,” muttered Amy.