Date: 02 June 2014
Summary: Feint helps Quickswitch regain control of his mind and will.
Quickswitch's quarters are dark. Lit only by the scant light of monitors and the light of his optics where he sits, unmoving. Across the disheaveled habsuite-for there are broken items everywhere- is a tattered, dented and scored practice dummy, smoking now, from the recent abuse to it. Quickswitch's blasters are also smoking. The sixchanger glances around the room through slitted optics, blasting once more at the practice dummy and blowing an arm right off of it.
<< Quickswitch? Are you there? >> Feint transmits a tightbeam radio out, hoping that the mech in question just might catch the signal.
Quickswitch does indeed detect the signal. <<What do you want...?>> the suspicious return transmission. Quickswitch still doesn't move from his spot.
<< I just wanted to know if you were all right. With everything that's happened , and the institute being discovered and shut down, I had no idea what had become of you. Are you in need of any repairs? Energon? >> Feint sounds genuinely concerned for Quickswitch's wellbeing.
<<...I need time to myself...>> Quickswitch radios, << I'm not sure I'm all right, but I know that much. Got plenty of energon to last me awhile, don't need any repairs... I just.." need help. He needs help.
<< Sixshot asked me to find you and check on you. >> Maybe that might get a little more enthusiasm towards being found. While technically she could just see through walls, find him and barge in - she prefers to carry on as if she doesn't have outlier abilities. Old habits die hard.
Quickswitch sits bolt upright, << Father sent you?! >> the young Autobot transmits, <>
After a few minutes, the door finally opens. Feint does not barge in, but enters slowly and carefully. "There you are," she says softly, smiling at him. "It's good to see you again. And yes, your father made me promise to help you if possible."
Quickswitch stands and, rather comically kicks some debris out of the way as he invites Feint inside, "Come in, come in," Quickswitch smiles cautiously. Last time he saw Feint, he had denounced her. Something he needs to make up for. He hefts more debris out of the way, "I was just, ah.. cleaning up." He makes a spot for Feint to sit or to transform at her leisure, "So Sixshot sent you, huh? I appreciate the sentiment but, he's a Decepticon now. What could he /possibly/ want?"
"Decepticon or not, he still cares for your wellbeing, particularly in the fact that you were a part of the super soldier program instituted by Zeta Prime. Now that the Institute's been exposed, we know the full extent of the horrors that went on there," Feint explains.
"... your present state of mind is the direct result of their attempts to section off, reprogram and remove parts of your brain module and programming."
Horror distorts Quickswitch's features, "Don't say that.." he inaudibly whispers. His optics glaze with that horror, "I don't want to /hear/ it ..but I always knew something was wrong.." he muses. He says, louder, "Can you help me?"
"I can look to see if they left behind any mind-controlling or will-destroying programming. If it's there, I can remove it," Feint offers. "That will allow you to be -you- again, as much as is possible."
At this, Quickswitch smiles quite openly, "You can..?" the cautiously enthusiastic sixchanger, however, adds, "Zeta sent me on missions I did not want to follow... but he was Prime, and the word of the Prime is--was--Law," Quickswitch snaps irritably, "You see?" he walks around his quarters now, trying to ignore the damage done to it, and to himself, "There's more. There's more than one of me up here. We can barely hear ourselves think, much less /function/. And worse, I almost opened fire on Sixshot, and I don't know why. I want to understand.. I'm willing to let you help."
"Have a seat." Feint tries to find a place to make space for the both of them. "If you want to sit or lie down you can do either. I'm going to have to engage in mnemnosurgery, but I will not do so without your permission. I'm not like my old teacher, Trepan. I don't force my way into someone's brain while they writhe and struggle."
Quickswitch hefts more of the debris out of the way and then sits on the floor. He indicates a chair with his hand, "This should do. Thanks for your consideration, Feint. Mnemnosurgery makes me very nervous, but if it has to be done, then it has to be done," Quickswitch shrugs mildly.
"You have good reason to be nervous. I'm saddened that I had to learn it. I thought I could help Blurr with it. He refused to be helped," Feint sighs. "That is why I will do nothing without your direct approval." She moves to stand behind Quickswitch.
Quickswitch begins a light trembling at this. By the look of his head it's evident he's experienced mnemnosurgery before, "Y-you have my permission.." he nervously gitters. His optics dim as he waits for the needles. "They" all wait.
Feint places her hands on Quickswitch's shoulders, gently. She leans down and kisses the top of Quickswitch's head. "I don't use hands. Mine were too small. I have a cable that I use so as not to leave scars." A soft slithering metallic hiss comes from behind QS, and a silver, prehensile metal tendril snakes around under Quick's arm. "Here. You can make the connection."
Quickswitch glances up as Feint kisses the top of his head. He smiles nervously and takes the cable in his hands. Removing his brain-casing, Quickswitch makes the neural connection. The moody sixchanger says nothing, but waits, as it begins.
And... there's nothing. No sharing of memory, no sharing of emotion. Feint is in, but she is in under Quick's sensory nodes and consciousness. "Yes... there's code here. There's a lot of it. I'm going to remove it."
Quickswitch immediately relaxes. This was not like /before/ with an invading mind and his fighting every step of the way. If Feint looks around, though, she'll find that this programming had begun to become corrupted. In base, bare form, there is an 'off-switch' installed to keep him under the Senate's thumb. Six distinctly different sets of programming. IFF protocols that demand he destroy the enemy. And obey. Always obey the Prime, the Senate, the Functionist Council.
"Is it working right?" Quickswitch asks, again uneasy.
"Some's decayed. Your defragmentation cycles have worked on it. Some is still there, and I'll have to work on getting it removed. It'll take a little while. What I'm going to restore to you in specific is your free will. Everything hinges on that; it was the purpose of mnemnosurgery. To remove the will, so that all could be one."
"Free will.." Quickswitch quietly utters. He remains seated, though supresses his t-cog from working an exhilirated transformation and tearing the cable out, "You've been very gracious to do this for me, and for Sixshot too."
"This is all I ever wanted to do, Quickswitch. Help others, in any way I could," Feint replies, gently patting one of his shoulders, as she works. She blocks away old code and tags it as junk data for the next recharge and defragmentation cycle, letting Quickswitch's natural defense mechanisms and natural programming flush it away like so much toxin. In this way, she leaves no scars, and nothing behind to be taken advantage of.
Quickswitch smiles. This is like nothing he expected it to be. Peaceful, no interruptions of his mind, "Will I be 'me' soon..?" he asks, "Without all these separate thoughts saying they're also me? It's confusing." He continues to enjoy the peacefulness of it all.
"I'll sort out what's damaged and what is simply -you-. If you have a tendency towards having different facets of your existence, that may not be something I can help you with. I repair neurological damage, but whatever exists naturally is not something to be fixed," Feint replies. She then works in the under the stream of consciousness to begin tying together all the severed portions of Quickswitch's mind.
"Oh," Disappointment and worry flood his voice. At first, the sixchanger feels nothing, but a subtle shift somehow, as something does not /change/ so much as become in sync with itself. Slowly, like the sun over the horizon. For an age, he sits, curious and worried and wondering, "Will it hurt?"
Feint detatches herself, the work quietly done. "I don't know. Are you hurting now?" she asks with a little chuckle.
Quickswitch's optics flicker in a 'blink', "No..." he touches a hand to his head. His thoughts, ever shifting, are strange and reverberant, but none of them insist that /they/ are Quickswitch too. He thinks of the Prime...and no sense of absolute obedience fills him with it. Quickswitch breaks into a huge smile, reaches out to
Feint hugs Quickswitch back warmly in return. "You're very welcome. For the first time I feel like I could actually do something to help someone, not fail like I have before." Glancing up she adds, "When you recharge next, the old code will be defragged and removed. When you wake up from your next recharge cycle, you will be -you-, as you were forged."
Quickswitch moves more debris in silence. Serenity is evident on his features, "There. Done. A recharge sounds like an excellent idea. To be me again..." he trails off.
Feint kisses Quickswitch's head, like a mother expressing warmth to her beloved child. "Sleep then. I'll be in contact if you need me."