The first thing I noticed while Ratchet was carrying me down the hallways of the decepticon ship: it was so empty. No one was in the halls, no one was in any of the rooms that they passed. It was so still.
Ratchet had set himself at a steady pace. I could hear him huffing with every step, and his arm swayed as he ran. I almost fell asleep, but then he stopped.
When I looked up, I understood why it was so quiet.
Optimus Prime stood in the middle of the hallway, battered, crushed, dented, destroyed, but standing. At his feet lie dozens of decepticon bodies.
"Optimus…" I whispered his name as I took in what had happened.
He turned and looked at us with the mention of his name, and smiled. He slowly walked over and held out his hand. I looked up at Ratchet as he moved his hand closer to Optimus.' He nodded, and I scrambled into the energon-stained hand. As soon as I was gone, Ratchet took off past us, searching for something.
"What's he looking for?" I asked following Ratchet's movements as far as I could.
"We had a few… injuries he needs to take care of," Optimus said blankly, walking in the other direction.
"But.." I protested, looking behind Optimus as much as I could. "But I want to see the others.."
"We need to talk first," he said sternly, looking down at me.
"Can't you talk to me about it later, Optimus? It would be fine. I'm fine, the decepticons didn't do anything to me while I was here, they just wanted me to-"
"Not about that, Annabelle," he paused, looking away as he was walking. "About your arm."
I sat down, crossing my legs. I ran my hand over the cuts as he rounded another corner. This is going to be fun.
Upon Ratchet's arrival, everything seemed to calm down a bit.
Wheeljack had been gained up on by a couple of decepticons. They had shot him at a close distance, a couple barely brushing his spark. He had broken energon lines everywhere, but as far as Ratchet could tell there were no main ones.
Bulkhead, however, was not as lucky. The decepticon Barricade had gotten the upper hand for a split second and dug his claw-like servo tips into his spark chamber. Whereas it didn't hit his spark directly, it severed many of his main energon lines, and he was leaking them out faster than what Ratchet could put in. Ratchet had approached Bulkhead first, seeing as his injuries were far more severe than any of the others.
Sideswipe had stupidly took on four decepticons on his own. As he was taking two down just fine, the other two looked for any open moment where they could shoot the young autobot. It wasn't long before he had gone down. If Ironhide hadn't showed up by his side when he did, he wouldn't have made it.
Bumblebee was on fire. He was ready to keep going. He was hurt, yes, leaking energon out of his arm, hand, and right leg. But he was in battle mode. He was walking around the mass grave of deceased decepticons, looking for a single sign of life.
Ironhide was less than perfect, but he wasn't as damaged as the others. He had a few broken lines, but nothing he couldn't fix himself. What he was worried about was Bells. Optimus received Ratchet's confirmation of getting the girl, just as everyone else had. That's when Optimus and Ironhide went on a frenzy, killing every blasted decepticon in sight. After they had finally reached the end, Optimus ordered Ironhide to go back.
"But Optimus," Ironhide protested. "I cannot just leave you here. You are hurt just as much as everyone else here, and Ratchet will blow a gasket if you're not down there healing what you can when you can."
"I must talk to Annabelle," he said plainly.
With that Ironhide nodded. He understood that Optimus needed to talk to the girl about what had happened, but also, he had called her Annabelle.
That is what had Ironhide worried right now. He needed to talk to Bells about cutting. As he leaned against the wall doing his best so secure his own cut energon lines, he thought about that conversation.
"Ironhide, I need you," Ratchet called, still leaning over Bulkhead's frame.
Ironhide sighed and walked over. Primus help that poor girl.
"It wasn't anything against you, Optimus, or the others," I babbled out, clutching my burning arm.
Prime had made me pour hydrogen peroxide over the cuts again, and it was stinging. I clutched my eyes shut, willing the pain to go away. Mind over matter.
"You caused bodily harm to yourself while in my care," Optimus said sternly, but caringly. "I cannot allow whatever was causing this to happen again. So tell me, what was it?"
"It's usually dreams," I explained. "When I have dreams, I'll wake up and cut, so that I can know the difference between them and reality. But recently, it's been the events. Like, I'll feel like I'm a burden, or when Ironhide was getting attacked...I blamed myself, and I felt so bad…"
Optimus nodded. He knew what he was going to do. He offered his hand to the human, and she graciously climbed on, laying in his palm. "Sleep," he ordered. He couldn't be sure, but he thought he heard her mumble a Yes sir in response. He smiled as he made his way back to the others.
When Optimus arrived, Ironhide and Bumblebee were carrying a weak, but alive and healing Bulkhead through the groundbridge. Wheeljack had an arm around Ratchet's shoulder, and was slowly making their way in the same direction. Sideswipe nodded at Optimus before he to walked through the groundbridge. Optimus took one last look around before he stepped into the portal as well, carrying a sleeping Bells in his hand.
"Can we save him?"
"I don't know...It'll be along shot. But we do have a chance. The sedative the autobot gave him was set to kill, but I don't think there was enough to kill Lord Megatron."
"Keep working on him."