Dairycon 2040: Erect and Proud!
“Hey, Optimus, did you know there would be so many people here?” asked Hot Rod.
Optimus transformed, and tried to ignore the people in the parking lot cheering. “They are expecting 25,000 plus,” he said.
“Wow, I had no idea it was so big,” said Krystal.
“That’s what you said…” began Hot Rod, but Optimus held up his hand, cutting him off.
“This is a family event, Rod,” said Optimus. “Don’t go there. Seriously, it didn’t used to be such a big event. DairyCon 2012 changed everything. They had one of the greatest exclusive toys ever. Coupled with the disappearance of the lost DairyCon Cybertronians, attendance rose exponentially.”
“I should have known,” said Hot Rod. “I’m still looking for the 2012 exclusive. One was sold in Washington D.C. last year for 5 million and I heard some rich guy from Texas paid 6.2 million for one last year. He plans to resell it in a few years for double that. They call that con the Transformers event of the millennium. If you weren’t there your life was forever unfulfilled.”
“So they say,” said Optimus. “Have you seen Bumblebee?”
“Not since I left you guys at Club Iacon last night,” said Hot Rod. “I thought you two were staying at Trump Tower.”
“Bumblebee left with Erector and Gemini last night,” said Optimus. “He didn’t want Erector going home alone, he was pretty over energized by the time they left. I expected Bee was going to meet me back at the hotel, but he never made it.”
“Optimus! Hot Rod!”
Optimus and Hot Rod looked toward the convention center to see Fredbot hurrying towards them.
“Good morning, Fred,” said Optimus.
“I’m so glad I found you, Optimus,” said Fredbot, worriedly. “Something’s wrong. Bumblebee’s locked himself in the green room and he says he won’t come out. He said he’d only talk to you.”
“Hmm. That’s not like him,” said Optimus. “Come on, Rod. We better find out what happened.”
“Think he got himself reformatted again?” asked Hot Rod, unable to hide his grin.
“I didn’t think he had *that* much to drink,” said Optimus. “I still haven’t forgotten the last time…though I did like the Camaro mode. I just wish he had sprung for the voice conversion. If I had to listen to his radio for one more minute, I’d have knocked him out.”
“I’ll catch up with you later, Roddy,” said Krystal. “I need to meet Gemini and get our pre-registration packets.”
Optimus and Hot Rod followed Fredbot inside the convention center. Whenever they were within sight of fans, the cheers were deafening. They waved politely with promises of autographs later in the weekend.
“What happened to you?” asked Hot Rod when they reached the green room. Erector was leaning against the door with his arms crossed. “Did you both get reformatted?”
“Yeah,” said Erector. “I kinda like it. Bee’s Goldbug again, but that’s the least of his problems.” He explained the situation to Optimus and Hot Rod.
“He’s a dead bot,” said Hot Rod. “We should say our goodbyes and see if he has any last requests.” He couldn’t quite suppress a laugh.
“This isn’t funny, Rod,” said Optimus. If he had a mouth, a grin would have spread across his face. “Okay, maybe it’s a little funny, but we need to help him.”
“I don’t know about you two,” said Erector. “Primus himself couldn’t get me to stand between Bee and Six-Shot right now.”
“Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that,” said Optimus. He knocked on the door. “Bee, it’s me. Hot Rod and Erector are with me. Let us in, and we’ll work this out.”
“Thank Primus,” said Bumblebee, as he opened the door. “Hurry, get in here.” He looked around like he was in fear for his life, which of course he was.
The trio quickly went inside and let Bumblebee close and lock the door.
“You look ridiculous,” laughed Hot Rod.
“This is no time for jokes,” hissed Bumblebee, almost in a panic.
“He’s kind of right,” said Optimus. “You do look ridiculous.”
“Thanks, Optimus…thanks a lot,” said Bumblebee exasperatedly. “Could we focus on the problem? Six-Shot is going to kill me if he finds out about me and Gemini.”
“Bee…I don’t know what you want me to do,” said Optimus. “I can’t exactly have him arrested…he hasn’t done anything yet. I mean…if he does kill you I can arrest him then…but I know that really doesn’t help you much. I swear Bee, if I had a glass of energon for every time you slept with someone’s girlfriend I could retire.”
“Yeah, how is it this keep happening to you?” asked Hot Rod. “I mean…don’t take this personally…but you’re not exactly a real ladies bot.”
“Well…according to Gemini, he is a real animal,” snickered Erector. “It’s always the quiet ones.”
“THIS ISN’T HELPING!” yelled Bumblebee.
Suddenly there was a knock at the door. “I’m looking for, Bumblebee,” came a low and gravely voice that sounded, as the humans would say, like fingernails on a chalkboard. They all knew it was Six-Shot. During the war, any Autobot who heard his voice and lived to tell the tale never forgot it. They knew they were lucky to have survived the experience. It was said that he would sometimes grind his enemies into a fine powder and make himself an energon smoothie. Six-Shot was well known for his extreme torture tactics, and faced with capture, most would take their own lives to spare themselves.
“I don’t wanna die,” whined Bumblebee.
“Listen, Bee, he’s not going to try anything with all of us here,” said Optimus. “I mean…he probably won’t. I’m going to let him in. Just stop cowering, it makes you look pathetic.”
Bumblebee brought himself up to his full inconsiderable height. Erector and Hot Rod stood on each side of him for moral support, but neither had any plan to get between Six-Shot and anyone he was planning to kill.
Optimus opened the door, and before him stood the toughest, meanest, most oilthirsty Decepticon who had ever killed an Autobot.
“Hello, Optimus,” said Six-Shot. He looked past him to see Bumblebee. “I was wondering if I might have a word with Bumblebee.”
“Sure,” said Optimus slowly. “Come on in.”
He walked in and went right up to Bumblebee. He towered over the smaller Autobot. “I guess you know why I’m here,” said Six-Shot. “Gem’s never been good at keeping secrets.”
Bumblebee nodded. “I didn’t know she was your girlfriend,” he said pitifully. “I swear to Primus I didn’t know.”
Six-Shot held out his hand and Bumblebee flinched. “You be good to her,” he said.
“Excuse me,” said Bumblebee looking bewildered.
“There was a time when I’d a walked in here, torn off your head, and used it as a bowl for my morning bolts and energon,” said Six-Shot in such a matter of fact tone that it made Bumblebee flinch. “But, recently…I’ve found Primus and renounced my old violent ways. I’ve never seen her happier than when she accidentally mentioned you this morning.”
“Really?” asked Bumblebee looking even more bewildered.
“Yeah,” said Six-Shot. “I just want her to be happy, and if you make her happy, then I’m fine with that. Anyway, I gotta get goin’. I’ve gotta catch a transport.”
“Where ya headed?” asked Hot Rod.
“New Cybertron,” said Six-Shot. “I volunteered to try and teach manners to the Terrorcons.” He shrugged. “Primus guides us in mysterious ways.” He headed for the door, but stopped. “Bumblebee, if you do anything to hurt her, I’ll melt you down piece by piece while your pieces are still attached. Don’t you forget that.” He left them, and the four Autobots stood in stunned silence.
“Well, now that that’s settled, I should get going,” said Bumblebee, breaking the silence.
“Where to?” asked Erector.
“To find Gemini,” said Bumblebee. “I need to get reformatted back to my old self and try out some of those positions when I’m sober.”
Bumblebee left, leaving Optimus, Hot Rod, and Erector standing around, unsure what just happened. “Do I want to know what he was talking about?” asked Optimus.
“No,” said Erector. “I wish I didn’t know what he was talking about either.”
“Anyone else feel like we’re being put through the most bizarre and ridiculous things possible this weekend?” asked Hot Rod, shaking his head. “It’s like we’re all just playing out someone’s really bad joke over and over again. I feel like we’re in a fanfic.”
“Yeah, all we’re missing is a time traveler,” said Erector. “That’s all we need.” He noticed an odd look on Optimus’ face. “You okay, Prime?”
“Yeah…fine,” said Optimus. “Come on. We have a convention to attend. I’m glad you’re here Erector. We’re down a guest with Bumblebee…otherwise occupied.”
“I appreciate that, Prime,” said Erector. “But be realistic. No one knew who I was before I was reformatted.”
“Stay anyway,” said Optimus. “It’ll do you good to spend a little time away from the tomb.”
“Yeah, and who knows?” said Hot Rod. “Maybe the weekend will get even more f*cked up.”
“Let’s hope not,” said Optimus. “It’s strange enough as it is.”
They headed for the door, but before they reached it, Fredbot opened the door. “Optimus…we’ve had a…well…a development,” he said.
“Devastator’s balls,” said Optimus. “What now?”
“You better come see,” said Fredbot.
They followed Fredbot out of the greenroom. It only took a moment to see what he was talking about. Megatron, Soundwave, and Starscream were signing autographs.
“I always invite Megatron, but I never thought he’d ever come,” said Fredbot. “Starscream just showed up this morning and asked if he could attend. I hate to be suspicious, they’ve been honoring the treaty, but I’m a little worried.”
“Don’t worry,” said Optimus. “We’ll keep an eye on things.”
“Excellent,” said Fredbot. “Well, you should probably get out in the crowd and mingle. Optimus…do you have that device I asked you about in my e-mail?”
Optimus nodded, and removed a small device from his storage compartment. “Here it is,” he said, handing it to Fred. “Just be careful with it. Do I want know what you needed that for?”
“Probably not,” said Fredbot grinning. Optimus, Hot Rod, and Erector headed out into the crowd, leaving a very pleased looking Fredbot behind.
“What was that about, Prime?” asked Erector.
“Trust me,” said Optimus. “You don’t want to know.”
Onward to Part Seven!
Back to Dairyland Transfans!