“Give it to me straight, Teletraan,” ordered Optimus. “Who’s missing?”
“I have two lists,” replied Teletraan 1, the Autobots’ A.I. “One is from G.U.N and discusses our missing allies, the other is the one I’ve compiled of the missing Autobots. Who do you want to hear about first?”
“Callous though this may be,” declared Optimus, “let’s hear the ‘Bots list first.”
“Ultra Magnus, Jazz, Bumblebee, Perceptor, Grimlock, Swoop, Slash, Blackarachnia, and Strongarm are all the ‘Bots missing,” reported Teletraan.
“And our allies?” asked Optimus.
“Sonic, Knuckles, all of Team Dark, Amy, Sira, Cosmo, Topaz, Agus Atmadja, Henry Zhou, Wilson Andrews, and all of Team Chaotix,” answered Teletraan.
“Scrap!” swore Optimus. “Has the Ark begun a search of the planet?”
“Confirmed,” replied Teletraan.
“Gather all remaining bots into the conference room,” ordered Optimus. “See if you can get G.U.N in on this.”
“Got it,” obliged Teletraan. Prowl, Ironhide, Ratchet, Chromia, Cliffjumper, Snarl, Sludge, and Slag all met with Optimus in the conference room. Tails, Big, Cream, Natalie, Trema, and the recently promoted Captain Lansworth, the Cobra were also in on this.
“I trust we all know why we’re here?” asked Optimus.
“A couple of people went astray,” rumbled Ironhide.
“More than a couple!” argued Tails.
“Easy,” advised Trema. “We’re all a little worried about our missing friends.”
“What are the ‘Cons hoping to achieve here?!” snarled Ironhide.
“I don’t think this is one of their plans,” countered Captain Lansworth.
“Pardon?” asked Optimus.
“Before this all started,” explained Captain Lansworth, “the Decepticon named Starscream vanished in the same manner as our missing friends did. Another Decepticon, Knock-out, soon vanished in the same manner. We assumed the Decepticons were making a new weapon and we were telling Jazz about this when he vanished before our eyes. Then all this started before we could fully tell you the circumstances of his disappearance. I’d say the ‘Cons are just as worried about this as we are.”
“A safe assumption,” mused Prowl.
“That still leaves the question,” rumbled Slag, “about how we’re going to get our friends back.”
“I may have something,” offered Ratchet, “but it’s a bit of a stretch.”
“It’s all we got now,” remarked Optimus. “What have you got?”
“I’ve scanned the areas where people vanished,” reported Ratchet, “hoping to get a reading on what happened. Turns out there IS something familiar with what happened. There was a distinct particle trace similar to the one both Blackarachnias had when they crossed into one another’s universes.”
“Are you suggesting that they’re in different universes?” asked Trema.
“I won’t know unless there’s further testing,” replied Ratchet. “Given the nature of what’s going on, I don’t think there’s going to BE any further testing.”
“A safe bet,” replied Optimus. “We need the sensors to find our wayward friends quickly if the alternate universe thing is wrong. Teletraan, begin a…”
“Hold up!” called Teletraan. “I’ve got a Decepticon stomping towards the front door!”
“What?!” yelped Tails.
“They’ve never been bold enough to attack us directly!” recalled Optimus. “Not since Megatron parted company with us! Teletraan, keep the weapons trained on him, but don’t attack unless I give the order.” He got up from his seat.
“Where are you going?!” called Ironhide.
“To find out what the ‘Con wants!” replied Optimus. He kept his hand hovering over his subspace pocket and approached the front door.
“OPEN UP!” bellowed the Decepticon as he made a dent on the door. “I DEMAND TO SPEAK WITH YOU, AUTOBOTS!”
“BRIDGE YOURSELF OUT OF AUTOBOT TERRITORY THIS INSTANT BEFORE I HAVE YOUR EXHAUST PORT PUNCTURED, YOU DECEPTICREEP!” Optimus shouted back. He opened the door to see that the Decepticon demanding to see him was the current Decepticon Leader. “Megatron,” hissed Optimus.
“Optimus Prime,” growled Megatron. Neither bot crossed the door’s threshold. “You’re looking well, for someone who’s missing a few soldiers and organic vermin.”
“I take it you’re missing some bots as well?” quizzed Optimus.
“I’m afraid so,” confirmed Megatron.
“Tell me, do you still stomp around on the moon?” asked Optimus.
“Yep,” answered Megatron. “Still playing video games whenever there’s a lull in activity?”
“Just got a high score in BotBot Clash before my friends vanished,” replied Optimus.
“Good, good,” rumbled Megatron. “So…”
“So…” returned Optimus. “…BRIDGE YOURSELF OUT OF AUTOBOT TERRITORY THIS INSTANT BEFORE I HAVE YOUR EXHAUST PORT PUNCTURED, YOU DECEPTICREEP!”
“Oh, here we go!” roared Megatron. “My youngest brother, giving orders like he’s the current Prime!”
“I AM the current Prime!” shouted Optimus. “Now, get your aft out of here!”
“I would love to!” barked Megatron. “As it just so happens, like I said, I’m missing some bots! Starscream, Knock-out, Soundwave, Frenzy, Buzzsaw, Ratbat, and Metal Sonic; they’re all missing! I’m currently looking for them!”
“So why are you at my door, yelling at me?!” demanded Optimus.
“Shockwave told me that you can get answers out of organics!” snarled Megatron. “Can you do that?”
“Of course, I can!” answered Optimus.
“Splendid,” remarked Megatron. “Thank you SO much.”
“YOU’RE WELCOME!!! …Wait, what?” gulped Optimus. Megatron moved his foot aside to reveal the organics he was talking about. They were a group of ten, mainly humans, but Optimus could swear that a small one with a big nose and big ears was green, one looked like a kitsune, one was a minotaur, and one had dark grey skin with clouds for their dress and hair.
“Organic vermin, Optimus Prime,” Megatron introduced. “Optimus Prime, Organic vermin. Have fun with them.” He then transformed and activated his Mobian Hedgehog Holo-form before driving off.
“…So,” mused Optimus as he looked at his new guests. “…Would you come in?”
“We would LOVE to,” replied a heavyset, red-headed man. He turned to the group. “Come on, guys,” he called. “If there’s one generalization in the multiverse, it’s that Optimus Prime is a friend to us organics.”
“So it IS a universe crossing matter!” groaned Optimus as the organics came into the base.
“Missing some people?” asked the red-head.
“As a matter of fact, yes,” replied Optimus. “Why don’t we discuss this in the conference room? Maybe you can shed some light on all of this.”
“We’d be happy to,” declared the red-head. Optimus led them to the conference room and helped them onto the table so they could sit on the chairs on top.
“Why don’t we introduce ourselves?” suggested the young Prime. “I’m Optimus Prime.”
“I am Ratchet.”
“I’m Slag. Please, don’t make jokes about the name, I heard them all before.”
“I’m Miles Prower, but you can call me Tails.”
“I’m Cream. It’s nice to meet you.”
“I’m Natalie Mayworth.”
“Trema Xarthanax of Nebulos.”
“And I’m Captain Lansworth.”
“I’m Richard Saunders,” introduced the red-head.
“I am Lukas Ackermann,” greeted a man wearing glasses.
“Me llamo Xiomara Elizondo,” (I call myself Xiomara Elizondo) called a woman in a green dress.
“M-m-my name’s F-Flora N-N-Nightly,” stammered a blue-haired girl in a school girl’s outfit with purple petticoats. She looked terrified. Xiomara put her hand on Flora’s shoulder to calm her.
“I am Usagi Tsukino I, Neo Queen Serenity,” greeted a blonde woman with her hair in two buns and ponytails.
“Bashoon Barmek,” introduced the green woman. “Goblin of the Under-realm. Ensign aboard the Realmfleet skyship, Endeavor. Serial Number: 33758.”
“Ensign, easy!” remarked a man’s torso attached to a glossy, black spider where the mouthparts and eyes should be. “I’m Lieutenant Melandra Skarenta, an Engineer for the Endeavor, and I come from the Haldebor Drider Caves of the Under-realm. Ensign Barmek is from Dwelga.”
“Sir!” hissed Bashoon, still not entirely comfortable with the situation.
“I am Hanako Royana, Queen of the entire Mid-realm and resident of the Mid-realm capital of Largandra,” introduced the Kitsune.
“Call me Gorfanth Steelhorn, an Under-realm Blacksmith of the Galdredan Lava Kingdom,” called the Minotaur in a deep, rumbly, masculine voice.
“And I am Mr. Swalmu Damfel, hailing from the Over-realm’s capital of Wysper City,” finished the grey, cloud-wearing being. Male, judging by the voice and title. He opened a fluffy-looking fan and fanned himself. “I must say, you are more hospitable than those that captured us.”
“The Decepticons have a tendency to conquer and enslave,” remarked Ironhide.
“Mr. Saunders, you said this was a matter concerning other universes,” interjected Optimus.
“I did,” replied Richard. “It’s an event called a Convergence. Our respective universes are touching each other and blending together briefly. A phenomena that occurs is people vanishing and ending up in another universe. Now, my friends and I use the ruins of the planet Vorton as our base of operations. If we can raise them, we can find all of those that went missing. If some of your friends made contact with ours, so much the better.”
“Vorton?” asked Optimus. “…Sure, Vorton.”
“It’s a myth here, isn’t it?” guessed Richard.
“Yep, and it’s just that, a myth,” insisted Ratchet.
“Once we raise them,” replied Xiomara, “you’ll be singing a different tune.”
“I certainly hope we do,” sighed Swalmu as he fanned himself. “I’m starting to feel a little homesick, and rather uncharacteristically so.”
“I WANT THOSE BOTS BACK!” roared Megatron once he returned to the moon base. He threw Thundercracker into a wall. “Doesn’t Shockwave have something?! ANYTHING!?”
“She’s come up with nothing, Lord Megatron!” gasped Thundercracker in pain.
“Then tell her to come up with something faster!!” shouted Megatron. “My Second-in-Command and Communications Officer are missing and have valuable intelligence! Optimus knows they’re missing, meaning there’s a good chance that said valuable intelligence may be put into the hands of the Autobots!” Just then, Eggman came into the room.
“My dear Megatron, splendid news awaits us!” he cheered.
“I certainly hope so!” snarled Megatron. “I’m in the midst of having a conniption over all this!”
“Then let me assure you, I have a solution to calm you and help us find our wayward soldiers!” replied Eggman. “I’ve found Metal Sonic and he’s confirmed a finding we’ve been overlooking!”
“And what, pray tell, IS that finding?” rasped Megatron.
“Recall, if you will, the particle trace Nemesis Prime had on him?” asked Eggman.
“I DO recall,” remarked Megatron. “Are you proposing that they’re in different universes?”
“I have been in contact with the one who can provide proof of that theory!” explained Eggman. “Metal Sonic contacted me from within this person’s universe. He’s waiting to be put up on the big screen.”
“Put him through,” ordered Megatron. Eggman keyed in a command and Metal Sonic’s upper torso and head appeared.
“Greetings, Megatron,” droned Metal Sonic. “I am safe and sound.”
“Metal Sonic, your creator tells me,” rumbled Megatron, “that you’re in another universe. I find myself in need of proof of that claim.”
“And you shall have it,” replied Metal Sonic. “May I present Dr. Cytanek Yavenag Borg and Adachi Hiro.” Metal Sonic stepped aside to reveal the people in question.
“Oh, not more organics,” Megatron muttered under his breath.
“Greetings,” called Hiro. “I presume the one with the large cannon on his arm is Lord Megatron?”
“I am,” grunted Megatron. “What manner of creature is the cyborg?”
“I am a Sprite,” replied Dr. Borg, “but my species is hardly the point.”
“…A Sprite?” scoffed Megatron. “What, like a Fairy?”
“Don’t confuse me for them,” hissed Dr. Borg.
“Minna-san, please,” assured Hiro. “Let’s not ignore this tremendous opportunity lying before us.” A rift then opened beneath Hiro, Dr. Borg, and Metal Sonic.
“Where did they go?!” demanded Megatron.
“Your office, it looks like,” replied Thundercracker. “The computer just detected them.” Megatron stormed to his office and found the three on his desk.
“There we go,” chuckled Hiro. “Much more private.”
“If you are finished,” hissed Megatron, “perhaps you can explain your reasons for contacting me.”
“Megatron, how would you like to be part of a vast empire?” offered Hiro.
“The Decepticon Empire is already vast,” dismissed Megatron.
“Not as vast as you think,” countered Hiro.
“Really?” remarked Megatron. “Considering the expanse of universes, at best, an Empire crossing other universes would only be able to hold one or two planets. What, pray tell, can YOU offer me?”
“How about the chance to conquer Nemesis Prime’s universe?” asked Hiro as a sly grin formed on his face.
“…I’m listening,” invited Megatron.
“Metal Sonic told me about what happened to you with an anti-universe version of Optimus,” continued Hiro. “What if I offered you the chance to find your anti-self and let you show him what power is? On top of that, I can help you find your wayward men.”
“Few things come without a price,” remarked Megatron. “What is expected of me?”
“I need your help in taking down a criminal by the name of Caan,” replied Hiro. “He’s a dangerous…” his phone interrupted him. “Oh, for the love of…!” he hissed. “Er, one minute, please.” He pressed a button. “You’re on speaker.”
“Four of our number have been taken by the Convergence!” barked a voice that sounded like it was speaking through a ring modulator.
“…Who was that?” ventured Megatron.
“One of my soldiers,” grumbled Hiro. He returned to his phone. “Bring Dr. Borg, Megatron, and myself to our fallback position.”
“I obey!” confirmed the voice. Megatron then activated the intercom.
“All hands, continue searching for our missing bots,” he ordered. “I’m going with Adachi-san to figure out how he intends to help us.”
“Understood, Lord Megatron,” called Thundercracker. “Shall I watch for any other anti-Autobots to arrive and try to mess things up?”
“Keep your sarcasm to yourself,” hissed Megatron. He switched the intercom off and turned to Hiro. “Shall we?”
“Of course,” bid Megatron. A rift opened for them and they stepped through.
“The darker ones have gathered,” observed one woman.
“As we feared,” sighed a second.
“Is there any decision?” asked a third.
“She’s coming to reply to us in person,” answered a fourth. Pink light then bloomed from a single point and blossomed into a feminine shape in a dress. The light then faded to reveal a fifth woman.
“We proceed with our plans,” she declared. “They are prepared. We shall begin.”