While the chaos on the Dominus unfolded, Optimus, Ultra Magnus, Arsha, and Discornia were moving towards the main factory. Optimus and Ultra Magnus changed their alt-modes to delivery trucks of Shocker Rift design and changed their holo-forms into Combatmen. Arsha and Discornia were wearing perception filters so they would look like Combatmen as well. Optimus and Ultra Magnus drove up to the entrance of the factory. They were stopped by a pair of guards. “I don’t remember seeing you two on the manifest,” barked one of the guards. “What’s your intention here?”
“We were on a supply run,” explained Optimus. “We’re carrying a shipment of Taraxium in our trailers.”
“Hey,” the other guard whispered to the first, “Hiro-sama DID say that there’s a pair of truck out there getting Taraxium.”
“That run’s not supposed to return until 5:00 tonight,” replied the first guard. “Get a search going.”
“Sir, the Taraxium is urgently needed,” urged Optimus. “I would hate for you to explain to Hiro-sama why it was delayed.”
“Hiro-sama will understand in this instance,” hissed the first guard. “There’s chaos going on aboard the Dominus now and he needs to focus on that. Directive 12, subsection 3: any and all deliveries during a crisis will be stopped and searched so all attempts at resistance will be curtailed.” A Search Party arrived and the first guard laid out his instructions.
“This is bad,” gulped Arsha. “If they get too close, they’ll know!”
“You there!” called a voice both Autobots knew.
“And, of course, Megatron’s here,” groaned Optimus. Megatron stormed up to the guards.
“What’s going on?” Megatron demanded of the guards.
“We’re searching these vehicles,” explained the first guard. “A supposed Taraxium delivery has arrived too early. I have reason to believe it’s an attempt at resistance with all the chaos going on aboard the Dominus.”
“I’ll scan them, thank you,” barked Megatron as he took out a scanner wand and tablet. He waved the wand over the two Autobots and the tablet flashed red. Megatron examined the readings a bit, then put the scanner away. “Let them through,” he ordered. “They ARE carrying Taraxium.”
“Excuse me?!” snapped the first guard. “We’re supposed to…!”
“We cannot afford to delay the delivery, considering we’re running low on Taraxium in the first place!” countered Megatron. “All deliveries of Taraxium are given Alpha Priority, meaning nothing, not even a security check, must hinder them! Check what I said, if you must, but you are ordered to let them through! Is that clear?” The guard checked, then blanched when he realized Megatron was right. He turned to Optimus and Ultra Magnus.
“My apologies,” he bid. “I had no idea.”
“You were doing your duty,” dismissed Optimus. “Forget about it.” The guard waved Optimus and Ultra Magnus through and they headed to the loading bay. As they passed him, Megatron smirked. Optimus saw it in the rearview mirror. When they arrived, they helped unload the Taraxium and waited until the loading bay was cleared before dropping their disguises. The Autobots’ returned to their Mobian vehicle modes and Arsha and Discornia took off their perception filters. “He knew,” hissed Optimus as he and Ultra Magnus transformed to robot mode.
“You’re sure?” asked Discornia.
“Positive,” insisted Optimus. “He’s got a trap in mind.”
“Well, we can’t afford to speculate so much,” urged Ultra Magnus. “We have to free the rulers.”
“Come on,” directed Optimus. They snuck their way through the factories and found all the Master Builders toiling in chains.
“Just when I thought I wouldn’t see this kind of barbarism,” hissed Arsha.
“This universe’s Batman and Watevra Wa’Nabi must be around here somewhere,” mused Discornia. “If we free them, the Master Builders may be inspired to revolt against Shocker Rift.”
“Did you say you were going to free Batman and Watevra Wa’Nabi?” asked a voice. Everyone looked to see a dingy construction worker near them.
“Emmet, right?” asked Optimus.
“That’s me, the Special,” replied the construction worker, Emmet. “Listen, they’re being held right above us!” He pointed to the ceiling. Everyone looked to see that universe’s Batman and an amorphous blob of pink, red, orange, and yellow with a feminine face held in a cage above the workers. “On top of that, we’ve got termination implants in us! If we revolt, then we die!”
“We gotta find the counter frequency for the termination implants,” muttered Optimus.
“All I know is that any files related to that can be accessed from any console if you’ve got the right codes,” sighed Emmet.
“Then stand aside,” declared Optimus, “and let me work!” He connected to a console and began his work. It took a good while before Discornia cleared her throat.
“Well?” she asked.
“This IS taking a while!” hissed Ultra Magnus.
“Don’t rush me, guys!” whispered Optimus. “You rush a coder; you get rotten work! …Wait, I got it! …It looks like the termination implant frequencies vary from division to division. I found the frequency for you guys…and the Decepticons…and Dr. Borg and her gang? Hiro’s enslaved them?!”
“So, what do we do?” asked Ultra Magnus.
“…I got it,” declared Optimus. “That’s why Megatron wanted us to go through. He knew I could free him. Got the counter frequency for those types of implants…let’s see, first some Navajo, then a little Ig-pay Atin-lay…”
“We call that Boar Fae,” giggled Arsha.
“And now, since Megatron was an Autobot before,” continued Optimus, “a little Autobot Military…now to press send…he’s got it! Now to free everyone else!”
“What in the…?” muttered Megatron when he opened the message and translated the Autobot Military. “…What kind of words…? Eshklay ehdzay a-keh-di-gliniyay ehdzay esh-cheenay a-wohyay oe-ihglay o-chintlay a-emay e-ahs-jahnay o-da-ihnay ah-loszyay a-wohyay oe-ihglay e-ahs-jahnay a-wohyay oe-ihglay o-chintlay a-wohyay e-gahtsay ah-nes-tsaday ah-nahyay ehdzay a-e-donin-eetsay a-chiyay a-keh-di-gliniyay ehdzay eshklay ehdzay a-keh-di-gliniyay ah-nahyay ahtsay ah-jahyay intkay ah-tadyay e-gahtsay an-ziethay an-ziethay oe-ihglay a-khayay o-chintlay ahtsay ah-jahyay ibehday intkay al-na-as-dzoh…oh, Ig-pay Atin-Lay. Then that makes it… klesh dzeh a-keh-di-glini dzeh…Oh, Navajo…aha, the Counter Frequency! Now to apply it…7, 2, 4, 2, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 2, 1, 6…termination implant disabled! Thank you, Prime! …I can’t believe I said that.”
“Master Builder termination implants…disabled!” reported Optimus. “Now, to do something that will sound the alarm!”
“…Prime, no!” begged Ultra Magnus.
“PRIME, YES!” cheered Optimus as he leapt up to the cage, broke it open, got Other Batman and Watevra Wa’Nabi out, and landed in the middle of the factory floor. “MASTER BUILDERS, I HAVE SECURED FREEDOM FOR YOU!” he announced. “YOU CAN NOW ESCAPE WITH US!”
“No, they won’t!” called a Combatman. “They revolt; their termination implants kill them!”
“Try it,” challenged Optimus. “I already sent the counter frequency to their implants!” The Master Builder became a little more hopeful.
“A bluff,” scoffed the Combatman as he pressed a button. …Nothing happened. “What the?!” spluttered the Combatman. “Something’s wrong!”
“Told you!” taunted Optimus.
“Is Prime always like this?” Arsha quizzed Ultra Magnus.
“Frequently,” he sighed.
“GET THEM!” called Other Batman. The Master Builders then went on the attack! Constructing various weapons out of any object they could find, they managed to overpower the Combatmen. The enemy fled and Optimus led everyone out of the factory…at least, part of the way. He stopped everyone when he heard a voice.
“I wonder what the alarm is all about?” called the voice in mock ignorance. Optimus deployed his battle mask as the source of the voice rounded the corner. Everyone leveled their weapons at the speaker.
“You’re coming closer to being shot, Megatron,” warned Optimus.
“I wanted to make sure that nothing happened to this universe’s Batman and Queen Watevra Wa’Nabi,” replied Megatron.
“Hoping, no doubt, that your ‘concern’,” hissed Ultra Magnus, “would curry a political favor with them?” Megatron dropped the act.
“I suppose YOUR reasons for coming here,” he hissed, “are motivated STRICTLY by patriotism to your Prime?”
“I can assure you, I’m well aware of Ultra Magnus’ patriotism,” snarled Optimus, “and the sacrifices he’s made and continues to make so peace can be achieved once more! So, why don’t you go back to Hiro and…play butler?”
“Because the remaining Combatmen are deploying mechs,” replied Megatron. “You WILL need my help in getting around them. It’s only fair since you freed me from slavery. Who would have thought that all three Pax brothers would be fighting side…” he joined Optimus and Ultra Magnus and pointed his fusion cannon down the hall, the same direction as Optimus’ firearm, “…by side?”
“…Just remember,” warned Arsha, “when you fire that thing, you’re aiming it at one of the supposed mechs.”
“I’ll try to keep that in mind, Your Highness,” chuckled Megatron. “For now, we must leave.” Megatron led everyone to the factory’s main outdoor yard and met with Combatmen and the mechs Megatron had warned everyone about. The battle really got heated as everyone fought.
“I must say, I find combat quite distasteful!” called Arsha as she summoned a fireball and flung it.
“I suppose you prefer the simplicity of a ball!” snarled Megatron as he ran his sword through a mech.
“I have to admit, that sounds a lot more civilized!” remarked Optimus as he fired on a few more mechs.
“Eyes upwards!” called Discornia as she pointed out multiple objects dropping from the sky.
“Missiles?” gulped Optimus.
“No, escape pods from the Dominus,” remarked Megatron. “I take it the chaos on that ship was a diversion for something?”
“You’ll find out later,” replied Optimus. “For now, we need another ship.”
“Did someone say they need a ship?!” asked a man in a blue astronaut suit.
“We do,” answered Arsha. “Got one in mind?”
“I’ve always wanted to build this particular ship!” cheered the astronaut. He then got busy using the factory and mechs to make the ship. “Spaceship! Spaceship!! SPACESHIP!!” called the astronaut. As the ship was being built, Guard and his teammates ran up to everyone.
“Need a hand?” asked Guard. He then spotted Megatron. “Prime, stand real still! I’ll get him!”
“He’s helping us get past the mechs!” yelped Optimus. “Don’t shoot him yet!”
“You DO know who that is, right?” asked Guard. “You know he’s committed a few atrocities, yes?”
“Your FACE committed a few atrocities!” hissed Optimus.
“…Wow, Prime, really?” remarked Megatron.
“Sadly, he’s still not the best at insulting his friends,” remarked Ultra Magnus.
“So sad,” sighed Megatron. He and his temporary allies then noticed the shadow that loomed over everyone and gazed upwards. “…No…not HIS ship!” Everyone turned their heads up and goggled. Optimus and Guard were grinning beneath their facial protection.
“A Constitution-class starship!” cheered Optimus.
“Look at the registry!” called Richard. “NCC-1701! No A, B, C, or D!”
“She’s magnificent!” Optimus replied in a reverent whisper.
“Why Kirk’s Enterprise?!” protested Megatron.
“17 separate temporal violations,” muttered Sh’Kar. “The biggest file the Department of Temporal Affairs has in their records. A menace to both the Federation and the Klingon Empire.”
“Again, why that ship?” asked Megatron. He was then decked in the face by Optimus and rendered unconscious.
“Ark, are all the Master Builders clear?!” called Optimus.
“All Master Builders clear,” replied Prowl’s voice.
“Then we gotta get out of here!” declared Richard. “Teletraan, can you take control of the Enterprise?”
“Already hooked up,” answered Teletraan. “The Enterprise will follow until Discornia takes control.”
“Discornia, I must ask one last time,” urged Guard, “are you ABSOLUTELY sure?”
“I am prepared to cover the retreat,” replied Discornia.
“It’s a suicide run,” warned Optimus.
“I am prepared,” insisted Discornia.
“Then we have nothing more to say,” sighed Guard. Just then, he gasped as it felt like the air was pushed out of his lungs. A Combatman had stabbed him in the back! The Combatman then yanked the knife out as Guard’s transformation was cancelled and he slumped to his knees as blood came down Richard’s back.
“VIRGINIA!” shouted Batman as he applied pressure to the wound. “MEDICAL BEAM OUT DIRECTLY TO SICK BAY!” Everyone was transported and arrived on their respective ships. Emily just entered Sick Bay and assessed the situation in a second.
“GET HIM ON THAT TABLE! FACE DOWN!” she ordered. Batman did so and Emily got her surgical instruments while preparing the scanner. “Not good! It looks like whatever stabbed him hit his lung! I have to…what the? Batman, are YOU seeing this?”
“The wound healing almost instantaneously?” asked Batman.
“Now I wish you DIDN’T see it,” muttered Emily. “I would have been assured I was going crazy right then!”
“Ow,” groaned Richard. “Is the anesthesia wearing off now?”
“Richard…I don’t know how to tell you this,” gulped Emily, “…er, you know Wolverine and Deadpool’s healing factor?”
“…What about it?” asked Richard.
“I think you’ve got it,” replied Emily.
“…Are you SURE your medical degree came from an accredited university?” asked Richard.
“Your wound just closed itself,” supplied Batman.
“That’s impossible!” argued Richard. “I felt the knife hit my back!”
“And it pierced your lung,” Emily went on, “but the lung healed, the skin healed with no scar tissue, and I didn’t even use my scalpel. It healed itself in a matter of seconds.”
“But…how…?” muttered Richard.
“I’m gonna need to ask you to stay here so I can examine you,” directed Emily. “I wanna know how you survived that.”
“No arguments from me, Doc,” replied Richard. “I wanna know myself.”