• Published 5th Apr 2019
  • 3,563 Views, 356 Comments


  • ...

From the truth of a thousand lies

Author's Note:

Feel free to listen to this music during the fight scene:

Barricade was casually driving towards east in order to regroup with his comrades. The sun had not even begun to set, the landscape he was driving through was full of green, and the meeting spot was classified as the "Foal Mountain." All three of these facts were making him so furious that, if he had the time and ammunition for it, he could scream towards the sky in pure agony and scorch the entire land (along with every living creature currently residing on it).

First of all, he had just been beaten and forced to retreat by an Autobot scum. Even though this opponent was the leader of the entire Autobot faction, the fact that his defeat took place in a beautiful day like this was irritating at best. On top of that, he wasn't really accustomed to sunny skies. His former residence, Kaon (the capital city of Decepticons on Cybertron), was always rainy and covered in storm clouds. Therefore, he was unable to immediately adapt to the brightness of this planet's sun and it was already starting to mess with his sensors.

Second, while he was not complaining about the color of the landscape, the surprising fertility of the land itself only served as a sad reminder of his home planet's miserable condition. He did remember the time when Cybertron's surface was rich with life like this and encountering an area with the same level of prosperity was causing his rage towards the Autobots to increase exponentially. If they had just surrendered without any fuss and accepted Megatron's rule, then every bot could still have a home to return to.

Finally, the name of the meeting place was plain stupid. In fact, the names of every single hill, mountain, lake, town, and city sounded incredibly stupid. What pathetic excuses for life forms came up with these idiotic names, anyway? The pair of alicorn princesses in charge of ruling the kingdom? In that case, he would go directly towards the capital after the meeting in order to teach those pretentious fools a lesson about naming places. Actually, Lord Megatron was already planning to colonize the planet and enslave its population after retrieving the AllSpark, anyway. So, maybe punishing those alicorns would not be really necessary after all.

With all those thoughts in his head, he headed towards the mountain at full speed and, soon enough, entered a large cave before transforming back to his robot form. Right after that, he noticed the presence of his old friend Brawl who approached him with curiosity.

"What happened? You said you were going to send the results soon. Where are they?"

"The interrogation was interrupted."

"Oh. Autobots?"

"Worse. Prime himself is here and I'm pretty sure he didn't come alone."

"What? How's that even possible? I thought Lugnut was in charge of destroying all the remaining escape pods."

"He was and it's not really like him to leave any job unfinished. The Autobots most likely finished him off before he could wreck the rest of those pods."

Brawl became silent for a handful of seconds before letting out a frustrated sigh.

"That's a real shame. He was a fine soldier and always good for a laugh or two. I'm going to miss that old sucker."

"Me too, but we have more important things to worry about right now. If the Autobots manage to ally themselves with this planet's inhabitants, we'll be in real trouble."

"Relax! I just demolished an entire empire of ponies all by myself and we have a whole legion of Decepticon troops at our disposal. So, who cares if Prime teams up with those weaklings. What we SHOULD worry about, on the other hand, is Lord Megatron. I imagine he won't be happy to learn that a bunch of Autobot stowaways escaped from the Nemesis and reached this planet in order to spoil our plans."

"Hmmm. You could be right. He is not going to like these news and will definitely take his anger out on something. That 'something' will probably be us right after we deliver the news."

Brawl once again sighed in frustration.

"I won't argue with you. After all, you know him much better than I do. I mean, you were one of the very first bots to join his cause, right?"

"Yes, besides Soundwave and Lugnut. Well, just Soundwave now that Lugnut is axed off. Speaking of Soundwave, where in the name of Primus is he, anyway? We could really use an assistance by him or one his minions."

"Didn't you hear? He went to assist the Stunticons on a mission to hunt down that huge troublemaker, Ironhide. Their last report came only two megacycles ago and it stated that they nearly cornered him in Caminus. I highly doubt that they can come here to help us any time soon."

"Ugh! Great! Just great! How exactly are we going to solve our problems, then! We are so screwed!"

He proceeded to punch one of the cave walls, causing a small shake. A worried Brawl immediately grabbed his shoulder.

“Hey! The last thing we need right now is getting buried alive inside a mountain. So, you’ll do well to calm down a bit and... What’s that thing on your back?”

Surprised by that question, Barricade quickly looked at his back and was shocked to discover a small device planted there. He instantly picked up the device and started examining it.

"Oh, scrap! This is one of those new tracking devices invented by that blasted Autobot engineer Wheeljack. Prime must have thrown it to my vehicle form's rear during my retreat. It becomes online fifteen cycles after it's planted and sends a signal directly to him when the target is located around a maximum range of sixty miles. It's already been five cycles since my escape and we're only forty miles away from that area. We have to crush this thing immediately!"

"Wait! Not yet!"

"What are you talking about? If we don't get rid of it as soon as possible, Prime will surely use it to hunt us down and turn us into scrap!"

"I know, but there's a way we can use it to our advantage."

Barricade gave him an incredulous look.

"How so?"

"Think about it. That device will lead both the Autobots AND Princess Twilight right to us, right? We can go to a place she cares about, ambush them as soon as they arrive, and force her to tell us the location of the AllSpark. It will be the perfect trap! What do you say?"

Barricade thought hard about this plan before a sadistic grin appeared on his face.

"Not a bad idea and I know the perfect place to spring this trap. Good thinking, brother. For a bot who adores blasting things, you're quite the strategist."

"Heh! Lord Megatron didn't make me the commander of his ground forces for nothing. Once we find the AllSpark and present it to him, he'll declare us heroes and we'll finally have that long-overdue break."

"No kidding. I'm pretty much tired from all this fighting. My servos should've used a vacation ages ago."

"Yeah, as much as I like blasting stuff, I admit that this war has taken its toll on me. Luckily, the AllSpark will put a stop to it for good and those pesky Autobots will have no choice but to surrender."

"So, what are we waiting for? Let's cause a little more destruction and set up that ambush!"

"Lead the way, little brother!”

They both transformed into their vehicle forms and headed out of the mountain at maximum speed.

Meanwhile, the discussion between Twilight and the Autobots was still ongoing. They had been talking for nearly ten minutes and haven't come to a solid conclusion yet. Even though Twilight preferred to get to know the Autobots a little better and ask questions about their culture, she eventually realized that it was not the right time. Spike, on the other hand, was silently observing them in awe. Their bold and colorful designs made them appear very heroic, in his opinion. Also, he thought that they could be great inspirations for an action figure series. More importantly, though, he simply could not wait to see the looks on the faces of the CMC when they get a good look at these multi-colored heroes.

"I know our original plan was to locate the AllSpark by exercising discretion", Optimus declared. "However, Twilight's suggestion convinced me to follow the opposite approach. We must contact Equestria's rulers directly and warn them about the imminent danger. The future of their land and people depends on it."

"I don't know about this, Optimus", replied Bumblebee. "Even if they listen to us, what happens if they also decide to rally their armies against the Decepticons? We'd be endangering countless lives and maybe leading them to their demise."

"Bumblebee has a valid point, old friend", added Ratchet. "Besides, they will most likely choose to melt us down or subject us to some unethical experiment before deciding to hear us out. Trust me, intelligent life forms always immediately fear and try to destroy beings from a planet other than their own."

Optimus countered, "This plan may carry great risk, Autobots, but we have little choice. The inhabitants of this world need to know how they can prepare for an imminent threat to their very lives and they can only accomplish this by knowing exactly what is coming to them.”

Bumblebee thought hard about this for a moment before responding with, “Well, when you put it that way, I guess it could be worth a shot.”

"Oh, and how exactly do you propose we do that?", Ratchet asked. "Simply climb up to the capital city and knock on the castle doors? Because, that sounds like a truly terrible idea, if you ask me."

Twilight elaborated, "I hate to admit it, Optimus, but your overly pessimistic friend here is kinda right about this. Every pony in Equestria is on edge now and the princesses are prepared to do anything in their power to keep the citizens safe from an alien attack."

"But we aren’t gonna do anything of the sort, stated Bumblebee. “We'll just introduce ourselves as peacekeepers and explain to them how they can prepare against the real bad bots. Simple as that. Besides, we don't look anything like those Decepticon jerks. We'll be just fine."

Spike noted, "Uh, Bee, you do realize that both you and the Decepticons are giant metal aliens, right? I really don’t think Celestia and Luna will make a distinction.”

Bumblebee’s whole face fell as soon as he heard that.

“Oh. Right. So, what do we do, then? I don’t suppose your civilization has invented radio communication yet?”

“Nope, but we could use smoke signal if you want.”

“Come on! That will never work!”

“Hey, it was just a suggestion! If you have a better one, I’d love to hear it!”

As this discussion continued, Twilight decided to think of a solution on her own. While she evaluated all the possible outcomes in her mind, she also took notice of the nearly wrecked train carts. Suddenly, a brilliant idea formed in her head and she quickly flew towards the middle of the conversation between her companions.

“Guys, I figured it out! Actions always speak louder than words and you can prove yourselves to be the good aliens by doing something nice for the ponies of Canterlot. For example, those carts over there are supposed to be attached to a train headed for the city. If you could restore them to their former glory and deliver them there in one piece, then I’m sure Celestia and Luna would agree to hear you out.”

All three Autobots looked at each other in confusion for a while before Ratchet inquired, “Are you seriously suggesting that the key to getting inside the city is repairing these primitive means of transportation and presenting them to your rulers as some kind of a donation?”

Twilight gave him an unamused look.

“Seriously? What do you have to lose, anyway?”

“Well, our dignity, for one!”

Bumblebee quickly got in front of him to face Twilight.

“I think Ratchet is trying to say that none of us really know how to fix up this kind of stuff. He’s a medical officer, Optimus is a commander, and though I worked as a construction worker before the war, it was more on space bridges and less on public transportation. I mean, we do have an engineer friend, but he’s currently several light years away from here.”

Twilight’s expression turned to bewildered as soon as she heard that.

“Are you kidding me?! NONE of you know how to repair a couple of train carts?!”

“I do”, replied Optimus and this surprised everyone around him. “I had conducted some research about Equestria before our arrival and one particularly interesting subject I came across was the mechanics of these trains. I believe I can partially restore these carts, but I might need some help in completing the process due to their crystal structure.”

Everyone kept looking at him in confusion until Twilight eventually broke the silence with enthusiasm.

“I’ll help you! I’ve learned a great deal about these crystals since my first visit to the Crystal Empire. Just ask me anything you want to know and I’ll answer it in a second.”

“Then, it’s settled”, Optimus declared. “Twilight and I will repair the carts and deliver them to Canterlot in order to gain the trust of Equestria's leaders. Ratchet, I want you to continue the search for the AllSpark in the meantime.”

Ratchet nodded in agreement.

“Good luck, Optimus. You’ll need it.”

He transformed into his vehicle form and drove off towards the west. Just then, Optimus's blue eyes began to blink repeatedly. He pressed something on one of his horns and his eyes immediately projected a couple of lasers that created a holographic map of Equestria. After Twilight stared at it in awe for a bit, she noticed a small blinking red dot on it.

"Why is this map pointing towards Ponyville?"

Optimus replied, "Because the signal of the tracker I placed on Barricade is coming from there. Therefore, that must be his current location."

Both Twilight and Spike gasped in horror and yelled in unison, "Oh, no! Our friends!"

"Hey, don’t worry, guys!", interrupted Bumblebee. "I'll just drive up to that town, get your friends out of trouble, and knock that rust bucket senseless. Easier done than said!"

"This seems like a rash course of action, Bumblebee", Optimus stated. "Barricade is a rather challenging opponent and it's unlikely that he will be there alone. Besides, you still have to get the civilians out of danger. You cannot accomplish all of these tasks by yourself."

"Hmmm. You're kinda right, actually. They ARE a bit too much for me to handle on my own. Wait, I got it! How about Spike joins me on this mission? He can help me evacuate the town and get everyone to safety. What do you say, Spike?"

At that moment, Spike became really excited by this proposal.

"A mission with you that involves saving Ponyville from Barricade? Of course, I say yes!"

"Spike, no!", exclaimed Twilight. "You barely survived our last encounter with Barricade. I simply can't put you at risk a second time."

"He won't be anywhere near Barricade", Bumblebee clarified. "He'll just be there to help with the town's evacuation and calm everybody down. It's not a very big role, but an important one, nonetheless."

Spike nodded in agreement and turned to Twilight once again.

"You can relax, Twilight. I'll find Applejack, Rarity, and Fluttershy as soon as we get to Ponyville. They'll keep me safe and help me get everything under control while Bee deals with the bad guys. It'll be totally fine."

Twilight let out a big nervous sigh.

"Alright, but stick close to them at all times. Also, make sure to check on Shining Armor and Cadence to see if they're feeling better."

"Will do! Hey, Bee, I think you should fight off the Decepticons AFTER we clear out the town. You know, to avoid accidental injuries. Do you have some sort of machine I can use to let you know when you can go into battle?"

"Way ahead of you, little buddy! Here, take this earpiece. It will establish clear communication between us throghout the entire operation."

Spike put the device on his ear and, after running a few tests, confirmed that he could hear Bumblebee loud and clear. Right before they headed out, Optimus approached the dutiful scout.

"You can call for backup any time you want, but if you remember to focus on the task ahead of you, I am confident that you will succeed. We both know that you accomplished more challenging missions than this one.”

"Thanks, boss bot. I will not let you down.”

“You never have and never will, old friend. Now, I believe you and your new partner have a town full of ponies to save.”

“Yes, sir! We’re on it! Come on, Spike! Let’s roll out!”

He picked up Spike, transformed into his vehicle form, and drove off towards Ponyville at his top speed. As they disappeared into the horizon, Optimus let out a small groan, which earned him a curious look from Twilight.

“That is usually my line.”

in hindsight, there was not much of a difference between Ponyville and the Crystal Empire in terms of destruction. Every single building was on fire, there were screaming ponies running in every direction, and the ground was shaking from the footsteps of a gigantic invader. Well, TWO gigantic invaders, this time around. While their combined power could have demolished the entire town in a couple of minutes, they were instead taking their time and waiting for their mortal enemies to come to their ambush.

"Good thing we smashed all those ultrasonic sentries first", commented Brawl. "I thought my audio sensors would actually explode after a few cycles of exposure."

"Yeah, so did I", Barricade replied. "Looks like these insects are actually smarter than we originally thought."

"Ha! Too bad they didn't think of a backup plan in case this one failed!"


They both laughed and resumed their destructive activities. A couple of minutes later, they reached an area full of apple trees and Barricade heard a combination of screams coming from a treehouse ahead of him. He looked at the treehouse with his thermal vision and saw heat signatures coming from three younger ponies.

"You alright?", asked Brawl inquisitively.

Barricade replied, "I'm gonna check out that little wooden house. You go ahead and smash that red building over there."

Brawl responded with "Whatever you say" before moving towards the farmhouse with his hammer.

Barricade, meanwhile, retrieved an Energon dagger from his back and approached the treehouse with a malicious intent. He was certain that Princess Twilight would not wish for younger ponies to be hurt and so, he decided to use these fillies as bargaining chips in order to learn the AllSpark's location as quickly as possible.”

When he finally reached the treehouse, he took a quick peek through the window and saw exactly what he expected to find: Three little extremely terrified fillies hugging each other. Though Barricade found this scene kind of adorable, he knew that he had no time to waste as Princess Twilight and the Autobots could arrive any minute. So, he proceeded to shake the tree with a kick to get the attention of the fillies.

“You three! Come down here this instant!”

“P-p-please!”, pleaded the white-coated unicorn. “W-w-we don’t want any trouble! J-j-just go away!”

“If you think that little display of cuteness will be enough to change my mind, you’re sadly mistaken. Now, for the last time, get down here immediately!”

The fillies remained silent, but also became even more scared than before. This situation greatly annoyed Barricade and readied his dagger to chop down the tree.

“If you don’t come out of there by the time I finish counting to five, I shall bring your entire house down with you inside it!”

“Are you crazy?!”, exclaimed an orange pegasus with a purple mane. “You’ll doom us all!”

“Please, be reasonable!”, begged the remaining pony who had a yellow coat and a pink bow attached to her red mane.

“One! Two! Thr-“

“Hey, Decepticreep! Why not pick on someone your own size?!”

Barricade turned around to find the source of that shout and was surprised to discover the infamous Autobot scout Bumblebee being brave enough to stand up to him. He was also quite amused by this scenario and decided give his full attention to it for now.

“Talking big is easy, Bumbler. The tricky part is backing it up.”

Though Bumblebee became confused at first, he was suddenly startled by loud footsteps coming from behind. When he turned towards the cause of these sounds, he was so nervous to find an angry Brawl standing right behind him that he quickly took a few steps away from both Decepticons.

“Oh, Brawl! It’s, uh, great to see you again! How long it’s been? Fifty stellar cycles?”

“Does not matter! You’ve been a thorn in Lord Megatron’s side for far too long, scout! I would’ve tore you apart scrap by scrap if we didn’t have any use for you right now!”

“Use? Ha! You’re clearly delusional if you think I’d do anything for you rust buckets!”

“Oh, but we beg to differ”, replied Barricade. “At this very moment, we have three young ponies as hostages and unless you bring both your Autobot friends and Princess Twilight here in one megacycle, I’m afraid their lifespan will have to be cut short.”

While the Decepticons were laughing at that statement, Bumblebee was observing the fillies who had poked their heads through the window. They looked really desperate for help and he could see that there were tiny drops of tear on their eyes. Then, he took a glance at his opponents and realized that they would destroy these children whether or not he did as they instructed. Right at that second, something snapped inside him and his expression turned extremely furious before pressing something on the left side of his head.

"Spike, I found the kids you mentioned being missing. Are you sure every remaining pony made it out of the town?"

"Yep, every pony else is right here. Are you okay? You kinda sound mad at something."

"I'm fine. Just keep the other ponies calm and out of town. I'll be back soon with the kids. Bee out."

Immediately after he said that, he pulled out a medieval-style Energon sword from his back, puzzling both of his opponents.

"Whoa!", exclaimed Brawl. "What do you think you're doing?!"

"You have a major malfunction or something?", Barricade asked. "This is not the time to play hero."

"Yes, it is!", yelled Bumblebee. "You disgusting Cons have always harassed and oppressed those who are either weaker or smaller than you. In fact, the whole reason why this war began in the first place was your crazy obsession with rising above every single bot on Cybertron. I thought it was bad back then, but now... Even I can't believe you've stooped low enough to threaten the lives of innocent children who aren't even the tenth of your size! I've had enough of your superiority complex! You hear me? I'VE HAD ENOUGH! You monsters will have to blow me into a million pieces before touching one strand of their hair!"

The Decepticons looked at each other before nodding in agreement. Then, they turned back towards Bumblebee and Barricade declared, "Challenge accepted, Autobot scum."

He ran towards Bumblebee and tried to slash him a few times with his dagger. However, Bumblebee deflected all the attacks with his sword, punched him in the face, kicked him in the knee, and downed him with another kick to the face. Brawl then tried to hit him with his hammer, but he managed dodge every single assault, slashed both of his knees with his sword, and knocked him down with a dropkick to the face.

Right after that , he was grabbed and put in a headlock by Barricade who began to taunt him with "Now, you'll get to feel what so many of your insignificant friends felt during their final moments!"

As he struggled, Brawl got up and ran up towards them in order to hit him again with the hammer. Just as he was about to do so, however, Bumblebee managed to break himself free by stepping on Barricade's foot and elbowing him in the chest. He then immediately moved out of the way, which led to Brawl hitting Barricade instead. Seizing the opportunity, Bumblebee jumped on to Brawl's back and started stabbing him continuously. Even though Brawl managed to grab him by the head and threw him from his back, he transformed into his vehicle form before he hit the ground, drove back to him, transformed back to his robot form, and hit him in the face with a jump punch, pummeling him once again.

A furious Barricade then attempted to repeatedly attack Bumblebee with his dagger and Bumblebee avoided all of them before knocking the dagger from his opponent's hand with a kick. Barricade then ferociously threw a series of punches and kicks at the Autobot and while Bumblebee managed to counter most of them, the last few hit him really hard. When Barricade tried to deliver another kick, though, he grabbed it and threw the Decepticon ten yards away. Despite Barricade running back that distance to throw a punch, Bumblebee simply caught it in the air, twisted counterclockwise, headbutted him, and delivered three heavy punches to the face, seemingly knocking him out.

Brawl then assaulted Bumblebee with his gigantic fists and though Bumblebee dodged the first few attacks, the last one connected with his chest and sent him flying a dozen yards away. While he was trying to recover from that, Brawl quickly ran back the distance and attempted to crush him with a brutal stomp, which forced Bumblebee to hold back his foot with immense struggle. A handful of seconds later, however, he noticed the cuts he made earlier to Brawl’s knee and hit him on that spot, which caused Brawl to back away in pain and gave Bumblebee enough time to deliver a shoryuken (a.k.a. spinning uppercut).

Brawl, though dazed, let out a frustrated scream, transformed into his vehicle form, and fired a pair of huge lasers from the cannons, which Bumblebee barely managed to dodge. As Brawl prepared to release another pair of lasers, he also transformed into his vehicle form, drove towards Brawl while avoiding the lasers at the same time, jumped upwards in his robot form that had a plasma cannon for a right arm, and fired six plasma shots to Brawl's rear end, which forced him to transform back to his robot form. After Bumblebee landed on beside Brawl's back, he fired one fully charged shot to the spot that contained most of Brawl's previous stab wounds, taking him down for good this time.

Just after Bumblebee walked in front of his defeated enemy, a recently awoken Barricade sprinted towards him while letting out a rage-filled scream and made one last attempt to slice the Autobot with his dagger. Unfortunately, Bumblebee instantly parried the attack with his sword, kneed Barricade in the chest, lifted him up, threw him towards Brawl, and even shot him with his plasma cannon in order to make the impact occur a lot earlier.

Once the two Decepticons were rounded up in one position, Bumblebee pointed his weapon at them and asked, "Not bad for a bumbler, huh?"

Both of his fallen enemies groaned in pain and Brawl said to Barricade, "I cannot believe we were bested by a tiny Autobot scout in physical combat! What will Lord Megatron say if he learns about this?!"

Barricade replied. "We can't worry about that now. We're both heavily damaged and need to fall back immediately."

"Oh, you think?!", exclaimed Brawl and the two quickly transformed into their vehicle forms before driving away as fast as they could from Ponyville.

Bumblebee shouted behind them, "Yeah, you insensitive cowards better run! Don't forget to tell Megatron that he's got a much better shot at taming Unicron than beating us to the AllSpark!"

Once they disappeared into the horizon, he let out a relieved sigh took a moment to observe his surroundings. Obviously, he became a little disturbed by the amount of fire and destruction around him.

"Oops! I guess that's partially my fault", he nervously thought out loud. "It's okay. Nothing's impossible to fix. I can probably clear everything up in three cycles at most, right? Except that I don't know anything about construction besides space bridges. Not to mention that all of my space bridge construction days was about five million stellar cycles ago, so I've most likely forgotten even the most basic stuff. Primus, I'm dumb!"

"That's alright!", said a small female voice behind him. "We can help you out if you want."

He turned towards the direction where the voice came from and encountered one of the fillies he was trying to save. It was the Earth pony with a yellow coat, amaranth mane, and a light crimson bow attached to it.

"You can?", he asked while kneeling in front of the filly.

"Absolutely!", exclaimed another filly to his left who was the unicorn with a white coat. "I mean, it's probably the least we could do to thank you for saving us from those monsters."

"By the way, your fighting style was totally awesome!", declared the pegasus to his right. "How did you learn to fight like that? Is there any way you can teach us some of those super cool moves?"

"Well, I actually taught those techniques to myself, but I don’t really think I have the time to show you any of them”, Bumblebee stated.

This resulted in the girls enlargening their eyes and over-enthusiastic expressions appearing on their faces.

“PLEASE!”, pleaded the Earth pony. “We’ll do anything! We’ll even talk the mayor into building a statue of you in the town square!”

This whole situation had put Bumblebee in a corner. He did not want to disappoint the girls and sincerely wanted their help in restoring the town. However, he and his fellow Autobots were in a race against time to find their sacred artifact. Any delay could cost them big time. On the other hand, their eons-long civil war with the Decepticons did cause the destruction around him and it was only fair that he helped fix it.

"Just hold on for a bit. I'll have to talk to someone about this."

He proceeded to press something on his head.

"Hey, Spike! Mission accomplished! The fillies are safe and the bad guys just got their rear-ends handed to them!"

"Awesome! Does that mean I can tell every pony it's safe to go back into the town? They just can't wait to begin fixing up the place."

"Yeah, about that..."

"Oh. That bad, huh?"

"Actually, it's kinda worse. I think we need to stay for a while and help with the repairs."

"You think Optimus would be okay with that?"

"Probably, but I think it's best if I ask him about it first."

"Good idea. Let me know about his answer to that soon."

"Will do, buddy. Bee out."

He pressed another button on his head.

"Bumblebee to Optimus. The mission is a success. The town is secure, and both Barricade and Brawl are driven away."

"Excellent work, old friend. Once again you have exceeded my expectations. Are you and Spike ready to return?"

"Uh, not exactly. A lot of the buildings here have suffered heavy damage and so, we were thinking that we should remain here for a little longer and help the ponies in restoring their home."

"Hmmm. Alright, but do not go anywhere else without permission from either me or Ratchet. Our true mission is not yet accomplished and I fear that the Decepticons you encountered were not the only ones currently located on this planet."

"Roger that, boss bot. Has Ratchet called in yet?"

"No, but I expect to hear from him soon. If he does not report in one megacycle, I shall send you to his last known location. For now, you and Spike will assist the citizens in restoring their town and await further instructions afterwards. Twilight and I are halfway done with our work and will be heading for Canterlot soon."

"Understood. Best of luck with the negotiations. Bumblebee out.”

He turned his attention back to the fillies.

"Well, it looks like we'll get to spend some time together, after all."

All three of them loudly cheered and began hopping around like bunnies as soon as they heard this, making Bumblebee even more nervous. He was just baffled by the fact that these little creatures contained even more energy than he ever did.

"Alright, alright! Settle down, please! How about we start with some introductions. Uh, what was that phrase? 'Ladies first' or 'mares first'?"

The Earth pony replied, "Sure thing! My name's Apple Bloom."

"Sweetie Belle!", exclaimed the unicorn.

"And I'm Scootaloo!", the pegasus stated.

"Great pleasure to meet all of you. I'm Bumblebee, but you can just call me 'Bee' if you want. All my friends do."

"Are we really friends?", asked Apple Bloom enthusiastically.

"Of course!”, Bumblebee happily declared. “Do you think I would’ve talked my commander into staying here with you guys if we weren’t friends? Now, come on! Spike is waiting for us at the train station.”

He offered his hand to them, and they eagerly climbed on to it. He then placed them on his back, but they proceeded to go to his head and shoulders, instead. Apple Bloom sat on his right shoulder, Sweetie Belle on his left one, and Scootaloo literally on top of his head. Rather than being frustrated, though, he actually chuckled and gave a warm smile to the girls who, in turn, smiled back. After that, he stood up and began to casually walk towards his destination.