|Final Solution||By: Sunstar|
Starscream gets a worrisome notice from one of the industrial areas he oversees; They no longer wish to create the weapons he needs to facilitate his war efforts. To preserve his reputation, Starscream attempts to find a solution.
This fic is an event that occurred in the distant past of Starscream. This is not based in any particular continuity other than what the author calls Seekerverse.
If anyone wishes to assist in editing this fic, please contact Sunstar. My email is at the bottom of the page
Chapter 1 Darkmount
Chapter 2 Cetagon
The battles that raged across Cybertron had been going strong for over four million years. The Decepticons attacked viciously in order to defend their territories and way of life from the suppressing ideals of the Autobots.
In the Province of Polyhex, the Decepticons staged their attacks. It was known for the Great training grounds of the Cybertron War Academy; The renowned Decepticon Institute of science and medical studies; The Decepticon mental institution for the criminally insane, a favourite place to recruit some of the most vicious warriors; The Darkmount smelting pits and the primary base of Decepticon activity, Darkmount.
Deep within the walls of Darkmount, plans for warfare were created and executed. It contained one of the largest prisons in the Decepticon territories, processing Autobot and Decepticon prisoners rapidly and daily. Punishments were continuously executed. Smelting pits, acid pits, firing squad, dismemberment, tortures. Scientific experiments on prisoners were carried out in its extensive laboratory sections, and many more which cannot be repeated.
Darkmount was the command centre for the Decepticon military. Megatron was the commander but he was out on a mission. This left Starscream in charge of the base in his leader's absence. Things on base were running well, for the most part; however, Starscream was concerned about some new situation, one that he knew would not bode well with him upon his easily irritated leaders return. One that was not on base.
Starscream was in his quarters; a tiny room near the top of Darkmount. It had a small window over looking the Seeker staging area. For his natural claustrophobic nature, Starscream found the window little relief from feeling totally closed in. He loathed being, what he would term, caged in. However, in a time of war, windows were not always a good thing to have. He had suffered several attempts on his life from snipers. Attacks against Starscream would not prove too much of a victory for the Autobots had they succeeded, but it would cause some level of disorder in the Decepticons while they reorganised themselves which would be an advantage.
Starscream paced back and forth in his cramped gunmetal grey room. He walked to his desk, looked at the monitor, circled a few times then he would plop himself on his recharge platform. After a few moments he would do it all again. His optics flashed back and forth between worry, anger and fury. He had received an e-mailed letter from Iconoclast, the leader of the Cetagon industrial village.
The contents of the letter bothered Starscream greatly. Cetagon was a primary supplier of Seeker ammunitions. He had struck a deal with them a number of years in the past and now they were informing him that they no longer wished to renew the contract. This meant that the ammo he needed for his airforce would have to be found elsewhere, and likely at a higher cost. Starscream was already critically over budget with his military spending. He did what he could do to limit waste of ammo, but the war had been tough on everyone and energon and credits were becoming increasingly scarce.
Starscream scowled at the screen. How could he word it any kinder to the village leader that these were absolutely necessary? How could he explain in no uncertain terms that it was his Seekers that kept the territories free of Autobot infiltrators; he kept them safe. How could he tell them that if he did not have these weapons, Megatron would surely have his head.
But when he had sent his response, he got a quick reply that Iconoclast was declaring their village as a neutral zone, they no longer wished to be in the war, which Iconoclast also remarked as "Pointless and a waste of energy".
"Fight with us or die with them," was Starscream's final e-mail message to them. He waited a few more minutes and received no reply. His message was received, that much he could tell. But what of Iconoclast? Starscream ground his jaw and curled his fingers into a fist. All of his knuckles popped and crackled with the energy released. Anger started to brew within the Seeker. Then fear as he contemplated what could happen to him as soon as he told Megatron he lost the contract. As soon as Megatron learned of his failure, things would go downhill. Rapidly. One lost contract would lead to one lost rank or worse, death.. unless... The cogs in his mind started to churn out a plan. A plan to either regain his contract or exact retribution.
Starscream was still a very young Seeker and he enjoyed his rank as Sub Commander and as Air Commander. He had been second only to Megatron for one hundred years. He had wished to prove himself worthy to Megatron and show him that he deserved his rank. Starscream looked up to his leader with respect and-fear. He had obtained his rank by being the best of the best, he would gloat. Megatron had chosen him out of all available candidates. Perhaps because he had the initiative to try new things or see that things were done, maintained and were kept in order. Megaton was pleased and awarded Starscream a whole sector to watch over and protect. Grateful for the responsibility, Starscream assured Megatron that the sector he was given would do his bidding and prosper well. However, it was not going to plan.
Perhaps it was because Cetagon was a Seeker village. Perhaps they felt that Starscream was one of their own and posed little threat. Perhaps they believed Starscream would defend them against Megatron if anything came of their defection. Perhaps they were sorely misguided.
Starscream unclenched his fingers and turned back to the monitor. He pondered about writing a final response, but, instead he shut it down and grabbed his weapons off the wall. He cocked his body slightly sideways as he stepped through the door. Once through, he strode down the hall with heavy, determined footsteps.
The energy crisis had been a growing concern as of late. Darkmount had been using some energy conservation protocols and every third ceiling light was on. As a result Starscream stumbled through the dimly lit passage. Some sections of Darkmount were in such desperate need of repair yet they did not have the resources to manage these repairs. Structural repairs were not a major priority. Darkmount was a thick-walled fortress which was nearly impenetrable.
Starscream reached a pair of double doors with a flickering light over his head. He paused to press the button and waited...he waited for a few minutes as the hydraulic lift groaned and whined on its way up. It sounded as if the the pulleys were ready to sheer off. Starscream wrinkled his nose in disdain as the doors opened only part way to admit him. He swallowed his unease and stepped onto the derelict lift.
It was the decision of the Darkmount maintenance staff that the lifts were also not priority areas for repair; despite the fact that everyone needed to use them. The only time when a lift was repaired was when one dropped uncontrolled, killing its passengers. Even then, it was not always considered a priority. One would expect the lifts to have safety breaks in case of emergency, but they ceased working long ago.
The greatest military superpower in the universe and we can barely get the elevators running safely on our own base, Starscream thought to himself sourly.
Starscream grimaced as the door closed with a gritty unoiled grinding noise. He fingered the seam as he noted how it no longer closed properly. "This will be the death of me," he murmured as he pushed the door closed.
"Lift to level 1G" he ordered.
Abruptly the elevator descended jerkily swaying a bit from side to side. The wheels against the wall squeaked and squealed. Starscream reacted instinctively to press his hands against the wall to keep his balance. He inhaled sharply as the elevating cables groaned. He swore he could hear the twang of steel fibres snapping. Please, get me there in one piece, please... he pleaded to the elevator in silence. He often wondered, morbidly, how many more rides he had until the lift plummeted nearly two hundred levels to the sub basement of Darkmount. He dreaded the thought of being trapped in a falling capsule only to be atomised as it crashed at mach speed. Again he inhaled deeply and attempted to push the thoughts out of his mind. Something productive perhaps? Lets get our little plan on the go.
He pondered for a few moments wincing at every noise the elevator made and finally he had some form of an idea. "This is Air Commander Starscream, to Seeker black ops units Delta, Echo and Foxtrot. Meet me immediately on the north side of Darkmount in briefing room A4; mission to follow. Seeker squadrons six, twelve, sixteen and eighteen meet me in one hour at the airfield. There you will receive my orders. I do not wish to see any units or unit members late. If you are late, you will face my wrath." The Seeker hissed into his comms.
Starscream exhaled in relief as the Hydraulic lift opened Level 3G was the sign on the wall and then he groaned. Despite being on the wrong floor, he decided he would take the stairs. It was only two levels to walk and he would rather that than risk a major malfunction.
As far as public areas were concerned. The stairways were some of the worst, next to the elevators. Few Decepticons travelled them as they were very dark and dingy. Quite often they were far too long a walk up or down. The stairways were a haven for Retrorats which crawled around them with big green glowing optics. The chewed on anything they could sink their teeth into. Wires and cables were one of their favourite meals...they had other tastes as well.
Starscream abruptly recalled why he usually avoided taking the stairs as a large Retrorat dove for his foot and attempted to sink its teeth and claws into the end of it.
"Slagging, vermin!" he shrieked as he fired his null rays. He made a direct hit and the creature squealed and dropped to its side. It thrashed around and green optics abruptly went out as its circuits finally shorted. Starscream muttered an obscenity as he punted the unconscious creature down the stairs. He listened to it as it clatter and bounce to the next landing. Soon there were more squealing as the other Retrorats scurried over to consume their fallen friend.
Starscream observed as they cut into the still living fuel tank and lapped at the spilled fluids eagerly. More Retorats arrived as they picked up the odour of the fuel which spouted from ruptured fuel lines. This new meal distracted the rats from Starscream has he hurried the rest of the way down. Retrorats, despite their appearance, were a good source of emergency fuel; however, they were very unpleasant to palette. Not to mention the amount of nanite viruses they contained could easily infect or kill a transformer with something akin to the bubonic plague on Earth. But when one was faced with a survival situation, one did what one must do.
Starscream exited the stairwell and slowly waked into the control room. The Decepticons acknowledged him with a curt salute or a nod, but they gave him space without saying a word. They recognised the look in his optic. A look that they understood meant not to question or talk to him. It was a look of pure malice.
Starscream's optics scanned the control room for the familiar bulk of his leader. Where was Megatron? Starscream wondered for brief moment. Did he pick up my orders to my units? Oh, of course, he was with that battalion fighting in Iacon. How could I forget? he chastised himself as he hastily turned a hall toward his rendezvous with the black ops.
Weather maps and radar maps were checked and double checked before Starscream permitted either the blackops or Seeker Squadrons to take flight. With the intense battles, burning cities, the manufacture of ammunitions and other means for war, the clouds had become quite acidic and dangerous. Flying through them was often considered suicidal. Starscream wanted to make sure he did not put his units in any risk. The less he aggravated Megatron, the better it was for him.
The Seekers flew as a large squadron, their members stayed with their standard groups of three, alone, not with any particular group, Starscream flew ahead.
"This is Delta leader, we are in position. Orders?" inquired the black ops commander.
"Hold your position Delta leader," Starscream replied. 'I will be going in first, the squadron has mopup orders. Do nothing until I tell you to."
"Understood." and then the radio went silent.
Starscream looked over his wing and admired the forty eight Seekers in battle formation . It was not the typical size of one hundred to two hundred Seekers, but he felt it was enough to do the required job. If plan A, talks, failed, he would use plan B, intimidation-if that didn't work, there was always plan C. Their engines rumbled in unison, sounding like the rolling thunder as they flew toward the eastern fringe villages.
Still angry thoughts continued to cross Starscream's over active mind. His anger continued to rise in magnitude at what he took as high insult. How could they? he fumed privately. Declaring neutral status means they will likely fall out of Decepticon territory and more susceptible to becoming Autobots...Megatron would kill me for that alone...How could they do this after all we had done for them? How do they even plan on making a living?
As they neared the village, the Seeker Squadrons checked in with Starscream and then split off into their designated groups. Starscream was the only one who went straight in.
The village was small with many low buildings and plenty of open spaces. The population of two thousand was mostly of Seekers with a few triple changers and land bound individuals. The structures were quite solid if black from soot and etched from acid rain erosion. Starscream circled the village once checking out the layout. He flew toward the village Square, an area with a large digital clock in the centre that displayed the time and weather condition as well as the chilly ambient temperature.
Starscream landed near a comfortably large building. He observed that the roof was high with ornate toppers. The metal doors were extra wide and would permit even the largest Seeker to pass through without getting his wings hooked on the door or having to side step through. A problem,he faced most often at Darkmount.
Starscream inhaled deeply and pushed his fury into the recesses of his mind. He wanted to negotiate first. If that failed, then he could permit himself to feel his fury once more. He was surprised that no one greeted him as he walked toward the building, but he realised that by now, he was probably considered an unwelcome guest. But that did not phase him as let himself into the building. It was there we was met by Iconoclast followed by a younger femcon Seeker.
"What's the meaning of this intrusion, Starscream?" the Decepticon asked standing with his wings flattened against his shoulders as he attempted to intimidate Starscream with his size.
"We have business matters to discuss." Starscream replied ignoring the posturing. "We will discuss it."
"I have no business with you anymore, Starscream. Our contract is finished and it's my decision that our town will no longer be part of this pointless war."
"Your decision?" Starscream's voice trembled as his anger started to leak. "Since when have you gained the power to make decisions that will effect the lives of millions of Decepticons? Since when do you outrank me?" the Seeker's wings trembled and his optics flickered dangerously.
Iconoclast inhaled sharply and gave the femcon a worried nod and the female hurried out of the hallway. "It is the choice of this town," he said.
Starscream straightened and clasped his hands behind his back. He gained his composure and appeared calm, perhaps too calm. "Well, I see," Starscream said very slowly. "The choice of the town is it? Maybe you are right, perhaps this war is pointless and is a waste of life. Well then, give me the plans for the ammo. We need them." Starscream held his hand out.
"I am not giving you the plans for weapons to wage war, now leave this place," Iconoclast gestured sharply to the door.
"I said hand them over, Iconoclast" Starscream snapped, "and I mean now!"
"I will not, I would rather die than aid in the further destruction of innocents."
"Iconoclast..." the femcon's voice warned from a room.
"That can be arranged," Starscream said with a dangerous smirk. Starscream opened the communicator on his arm. "Delta leader, skip plan B and go directly to C. You have a-go." Abruptly there was gun fire in the streets.
"You wouldn't dare..." Iconoclast looked up at Starscream in shock.
"Yes I would, now give me the plans and/or re-sign the contract with me, and I will leave you in peace, this is my last offer."
Iconoclast shook his head. "You won't do this, not to your own kind."
Starscream nodded. He was correct. Iconoclast was playing the dare card. He did not think Starscream would carry out what he threatened to do. "Wanna bet?" he said slowly, "I understand neutrals do not fight back, so this should be very interesting to watch." Starscream opened up his comms once again. Delta Leader, Arrest Iconoclast and his clan.
As Starscream finished his order, the Delta Leader and company burst through the door. The gathered up the Seeker family and his offspark and dragged them into the village Square. They were bound hand and foot then gagged and forced to watch as the village was attacked from all directions.
Starscream stood firing at Decepticons and Seekers as they attempted to flee through the village. He laughed shrilly. Being that you have betrayed me, I will make you watch every last member of your village die in what horrible manners that my troops can think of. It will be known from here on in that I will not be questioned, I will get what I want or the punishment is death. Once everyone here has done their job and died, then I will personally kill each one of you."
Starscream nodded to a couple of Seekers. "Guard these Seekers until I return, I am planning on having a little fun." The Seekers nodded and stood by the bound group.
Starscream watched as his warriors dove down and attacked without mercy that he himself did not show. Starscream passed an alleyway with his weapons on full lethal power. He heard whimpering of someone frightened in the darkness. Quietly, stealthily he turned into the ally. He lifted a lid of a dumpster and looked at two very young faces, one male and one female. They stared back at him and were very frightened.
Starscream smiled to them gently, "Please," he said, "come out, I will take you somewhere where it is safe."
"Our creators told us to remain here, we're under attack." the youthful male said. The female clung to him whimpering and shaking.
"You are safe with me, come on," he said.
The two offspark exchanged nervous glances and slowly climbed out. Starscream waited. As soon as they cleared the bin, he opened fired. He hit each one between the optics and killed them instantly.
"Let this be a lesson to you, offspark, never talk or listen to strangers," he said as he turned back on them and continued with his hunt.
Another alley he observed one of his warriors tormenting a femcon before slicing her throat open with a knife. He nodded to the trooper giving him his approval as he caught sight of a quick movement.
Starscream identified the movement as a femcon as well. Are they all femcons? He wondered? Oh wait, the males are probably defending the village-funny I thought they didn't want to fight? Starscream. Cocked his head as he listened. It was difficult from the cries and screams of the frightened and the shouts and gunfire of his warriors. There it was again, the movement. Starscream burst into a full run.
Starscream ran down a young femcon and grabbed her from behind. As he did she screamed for help and he rapidly hooked his arm around her throat and she gasped and fought against him. "And here I thought you were a neutral," he whispered into her audio.
"Please don't, Starscream...please, let me go," she said between terrified sobs. "I don't want to die."
Starscream crushed his arm tighter around her throat. "You see, my dear? That choice wasn't made for you." he said in a harsh whisper. "You may thank, Iconoclast, for that" Starscream spun her around and locked optics with her. He glanced her up and down for a moment and watched her tremble. "You are pretty, but..." He smiled a sinister smile, "you're lucky you were caught by me, " he said as he snapped her head quickly to the right. She barely let out a shriek as she dropped lifeless at his feet.
The femcon quickly faded to grey and Starscream pulled her into a building. He looked around and did not see anyone inside. He opened up a box of magnesium and sprinkled it on the floor. He fired his weapon and it ignited. It burned with a blinding white light so bright that Starscream had to turn his face away from fire. As it burned it ignited other flammable plastics and metal. Soon the structure was consumed in flame and the dead femcon burned with it.
"Yes, Iconoclast. Watch your village go up in smoke!" He stepped away from the burning building and watched as the flames shot high through the roof, causing the thin metal shingles to melt and slough off. Other structural metals glowed red, then yellow as the bright orange tongues of flame leapt up. Plastics vaporised in an acrid cloud of smoke that billowed darkly across the village.
The Seeker backed away a few more steps and looked as lava like rivers of molten materials flowed from the buildings. Several structures had caught fire from the one he had started. Starscream could hear the screams of people trapped inside the buildings as they were burned to death. He clenched his jaw as he bumped into a fleeing figure. He turned on his heel and grabbed a triple changer in by his arm. The triple changer attempted to punch Starscream but the Seeker ducked and tripped him. The Decepticon fell face first into the river of molten metals. Starscream watched as the triple changer thrashed and screamed for mercy as he was slowly consumed by the river.
"I am so sorry," Starscream apologised, "I don't do requests." The Seeker stepped away from the glowing orange river. Interesting, Starscream mused, the ground must be made of something inferior and holds heat well. This place is turning into a regular slag pit.
"HA HA!" he laughed shrilly, "This is more like it, a smelting pit of such magnitude and beauty. We must not waste this golden opportunity!" His voice barely carried over the sound of the blazing buildings and hiss of melting metal.
Starscream opened his comm link again. "Starscream to all units, conserve your ammo if you can, toss anyone you capture into the molten slag and burning buildings." Starscream ordered. "ensure there are no survivors.
Starscream had to back away from the inferno. The heat from the fires were so intense that he could feel his own armour prickle uncomfortably from it. He slowly walked away, not wishing to remove his optics from what he considered pure beauty. The other Seekers also pulled away from the inferno. The heat from thermals would make flying most precarious when they had to leave the area. Starscream had not anticipated that but a short walk west would get them out of harms range.
Starscream returned to the Square looking around. Heaps of bodies laid strewn across the ground. The once quaint town lay in total ruins. Iconoclast watched Starscream with terror as the Seeker came near.
"Beautiful isn't it? The fire," Starscream admired. "Oh and look the the thermometer is rising," he mused looking at the clock. "So it does work.
Iconoclast's voice was muffled under the gag.
"I beg your pardon? Oh, how very rude of me," Starscream untied the gag. "I am most impressed with your people's resolve to hide," Starscream said as he sat on the ground near his prisoners. "Unfortunate that they died so easily. What do you say to that?"
Iconoclast shook. "You'll burn in the pit for this, Starscream."
Starscream chortled."I think not. It's you who'll burn in the pit. You didn't want your village to be part of this war, well-consider your wish granted." Starscream stood up. "I am sure you have seen enough destruction for one lifetime, however...I must make sure you get the full scope of my punishment for turning your back on me." Starscream checked his ammunitions supply and used his foot to knock one of Iconoclast's terrified offspark out in the open.
"Starscream, not them, please... spare them," Iconoclast pleaded. "It's not their fault..."
"I realise this, but...you chose this fate for them." Starscream leaned down to look the offspark in the face. "Such a pretty young girl you have, Iconoclast, pity she won't grow up." Starscream fired and the girl dropped dead. Iconoclast inhaled sharply and his bondmate burst into frantic sobbing.
"How could you?" Iconoclast demanded with a broken voice.
"Easy," Starscream replied coldly, "like this." pulled one of Iconoclast's older sons out and shot him between the optics. "One thing, you must learn, Iconoclast, is not to dare me. As you just witnessed, It will turn out very bad." Starscream aimed his weapon at another offspark. He fired this time without looking away from Iconoclast. The youngster screamed for him and Iconoclast thrashed with grief.
"Now, Iconoclast, if you cannot get your femcon under control, I will. I hate screaming females, even gagged ones. One would think it was the end of the world just by the way she is flipping out."
Iconoclast opened his mouth but words failed him. His face was etched with pain as Starscream fired. His bondmate fell against his body and he shuddered between sobs of grief. "You will burn..."
"It is a terrible pity it had to end this way, you know? We could have had a great business venture together. I was willing to pay, but...all good things must come to an end." said Starscream as he locked optics with his final victim. He had enjoyed tormenting Iconoclast. He tormented him like a cat torments a mouse. Slowly, ever so slowly Starscream squeezed the trigger. A bolt of lavender coloured energy struck iconoclast in the chest. It was not a instantly killing wound. No, Iconoclast collapsed dirt and ash and spasmed in agony. His optics went dimmed and his colour drained from his body. Death had set in and the village was almost destroyed.
Starscream stood alone in the square. All the Seekers had fallen back to the area west of the village and. Starscream fired a few shots at the clock tower and it fell down smashed. The ground shuddered from its impact. Starscream took a deep breath and listened to the crackle of the inferno. He strained to listen but he detected no survivors.
Starscream glanced at the heap of bodies and nodded. "ah, there it is," he said as he leaned down and took a data chip out of Iconoclast's lifeless hands. "handing this over to me in the first place could have saved you all manner of grief."
Starscream felt it was time to leave. He was done, well, almost done. "I've got the plans, fall back to the checkpoint and I will finish the job here."
The Seeker jumped into the air and braved the turbulent thermals, choking gases and blinding smoke. He circled the village and dropped a cascade of cluster bombs over what remained of the village. As he finished his pass the first of the bombs had hit the ground. They exploded with orange blossoms of light and a thundering sound. Starscream flew to meet his fellow warriors and left the village behind him. If there was any chance the someone in the village survived, he was certain now that they would have perished.