Title: Passing Notes
Date: 28 March 2014
Summary: Moonlight brings word from Pax to Hot Rod.
It's been an interesting day for Moonlight. Okay, maybe not terribly interesting /for/ her, but Hot Rod will probably find her day interesting even if she doesn't overly agree. Either way, she's back at the Acroplex, looking for the mech. She's got a message to pass on from his FAVORITE PERSON EVER!
oh man oh MAN Hot Rod's so excited. He doesn't know why he's excited. He just is. He can sense it. SOMETHING GREAT IS GONNA HAPPEN. That's why Moonlight can find him doodling on a table in the mess hall with a cube of half-emptied energon at his elbow and a stack of datapads on the bench next to his hip which he is ignoring. Yeah, he sure looks excited.
"Hey, Hot Rod," is Moonlight's cheerful greeting. "I've got a message for you." Straight and to the point. The femme often doesn't bother being subtle just for the sake of it. When she has a job to do that requires it, she can be smooth enough, but at the moment, it's not necessary so it's time to just blurt things out.
Hot Rod startles upright with a guilty twitch. He scuffs out his latest doodle. "Huh? Oh!" He turns a grin at Moonlight and then nods across the table. "Have a seat," he offers. Straightening and leaning back, he pulls his ignored fuel closer to cup it in his hands. "You're smiling, so it can't be a bad message."
Moonlight sits in the chair, tilting it back slightly so that the front two legs are in the air. "Well, depending on how you look at it, it could be bad or good. Either way, I've finally met this Orion Pax fellow that you're so fond of," she says. "He's the one the message is from."
Hot Rod /wiggles/ in his seat. He shifts, and if he weren't already upright, he would be now. As it is, his spoiler quivers. He was paying attention to Moonlight. Now he is /paying attention/. "Oh! You finally met him? What'd you think? What'd he say?"
"He was trying to get some part for one of those outliers in his care," Moonlight says, "and the salesmech was charging him outrageous prices. Well, maybe not TOO outrageous; I'd have to know more about the piece to know it's real worth as well as the trouble for the procuring of it. Anyhow, that's neither here nor there. Pax is pretty sure this mech is going to sell him out for the bounty. Which is why he wants you to be alert of the situation in case things go south." See, not the best of news, but it just gives Hot Rod the chance to impress his idol with SUPER HEROICS.
Hot Rod looks outraged -- outraged!! -- on Pax's behalf. "What? Who was it! I'm not saying that they should've given it away, but that's just wrong." Down with the capitalist system! "Especially if they are turning to bounties." His expression morph to one of disgust, then determination. "What does he need?"
"Something called a electromagnetic to power converter," Moonlight says promptly; she made sure she memorized what it was. "The guy was even trying to sell him a broken one for ninety thousand shanix." She shakes her head a few times. "No work ethic at all. You charge someone crazy money, you'd better be actually giving them something in return." Moonlight takes her job seriously...well, as seriously as she takes anything. "There's a pretty good chance he'll want to talk to you directly about it, but I'm supposed to give you the heads up in case the salesmech tries something first."
"Ninety /thousand/?" Hot Rod doesn't have enough fingers to count that high. He can't count anywhere near that high. He's stunned a moment, then collects himself to give her a sober nod. "Right. Thanks for the heads up. It's all messed up when good people have bounties on them for doing the right thing."
Moonlight nods her head at this. "Well, bounties are handy because sometimes they're on people who do the wrong things for the wrong reasons. Some people do the wrong things for the right reasons, and it gets a little trickier. Oddly those who do the right things for the wrong reasons often get over looked." She grins wryly, counting herself to be a member of that camp quite often. "It was pretty obviously a trap when he knocked it down to a tenth of the price. But I guess Pax is the kind to risk himself for those under his care. That's a sign of a good leader."
Hot Rod laughs, grinning at her from behind the cube as he finishes it off, then sets it to the side. "Yeah. You're right about that. I'm not sure what that says about reasons. Maybe just a reminder to always do the right thing, no matter what. Pax is like that. Doing the right thing. Taking the risks himself. I got lectured for doing that, once." His expression suggests a bittersweet touch and he shakes his head. "If it helps his friend, it'll be worth it. We just have to make sure they don't catch him."
"The guy he's trying to help is Windcharger. Don't know if that means anything to you or not," Moonlight says. "The part is for him. Don't know what it does exactly, but it must be important or he wouldn't be willing to go to such lengths to find it."
"It sounds like it does ... converter ... things." Hot Rod is not the go-to mech for science things. "I don't know what we'd do without Nautica," he admits. "None of us need such special parts either, though. Pretty easy to patch up and replace." Glancing up, he contemplates Moonlight's hat. "Although I don't know /how/ we'd ever replace /that/."
Moonlight has a good laugh over the statement about her hat. "Well, it's not VITAL so don't worry too much about it. Just a statement of my experiences and individuality I guess." She's quite attached to her hat, and would probably complain a lot at it's loss, but it wouldn't really impede her functioning at all. "Internally, I'm pretty standard, I hate to say."
"Yeah. Most of us are, fortunately. I mean -- don't tell them I said that," Hot Rod says with a quick grin and a wave over his shoulder. "We're all high-performance speedsters of finest quality! But no, uh, converter things. I mean, the fanciest we get is Rewind's camera, you know? Pax's group is just--." Hot Rod breaks off and shakes his head. Ruefully, he says, "Kind of what you'd expect, I guess."
"I don't mind being normal in some ways if it means I can get fixed up easier," Moonlight says with a shrug. "Just means I have to work a little harder at being noticable. Or, not noticable when I need to be." She laughs. "I'm assuming you know how to get ahold of Pax...or that he can find you here if he needs to?"
Hot Rod nods to both sides of her question: "Yeah, either way." He seems fairly unconcerned by the idea of a message going astray, particularly now that the communication towers are back up. IT'LL BE FINE. He grins at her, then asks, "Never really worked out the trick of how to be not noticeable."
"I don't think you've been trying," Moonlight says, gesturing to the flames. "After all, the society wanted to condemn you to a life of being dreary, so being undreary is just another way of fighting back. Everything you do, everything you are, seems based around sticking it to the system."
"Yeah, well. The system's terrible. Everyone always says 'oh, no, Hot Rod, we can't tear it down' and 'we have to change it' but nothing is changing and people are hurting. It's easy to say that we need to accept slow change from within when you're already /inside/, but when you're outside, and you're watching people starve and offline in the gutters--." Hot Rod breaks off before he can quite reach a fever pitch. Already wound up, it takes him a moment to idle back into something quieter. He vents. "And I know you know that. I just wish we could do more sometimes."
"Well, the little things will add up. Trust me. I've seen it happen. You aren't the first people who have gotten disgusted at the government and done something about it. It's happened in lots of places," Moonlight says. "Hmmm, that reminds me. I should go looking through some of my lit to see if there's anything about revolutions in them..."
Hot Rod winds down into a slow grin. "/Successful/ revolutions," he specifies. "Because a lot of them seem to end with dead rebels and a return to order."
"Again, it doesn't always happen that way. But I'll be sure to keep that in mind," Moonlight adds with a wink. "Would suck to fix the world and not be alive to enjoy it, hn?" She shakes her head. "But you're the kind that Lady Luck smiles down on, so I'm sure you'll make it through to the other side."
"I like to think so." Hot Rod's smile brightens. "But I'll be a little happier if I can spread that luck around, you know? Selfish not to share it. I fully plan to be around to see it when everything's finally the way it should be."
Moonlight lets her chair down with a soft thump. "You're doing alright for yourself. When you get /too/ ambitious you end up like that fellow Megatron. From what I've gathered listening around, he used to have some really good ideas, but then he lost focus. He decided that the ends justify the means. You can't let yourself follow that line of thinking. You can't sacrifice the things you're trying to save or you end up with both hands empty."
Hot Rod pushes to his feet with a wry twist to his smile. "Yeah, well, I don't think /too/ ambitious is really much of a problem for me." He spends enough time running away from the ambitions that other people set for him. "I try to remember that. It's a good reminder. Thanks for the heads up."