Starscream’s gonna merge with a titan. Excuse my logic, I’m writing this at two in the morning.
ANYWAY the description for TAAO #11 reads as follows:
“With Elita One’s influence closing in around Starscream, he’s desperate to make any alliances he can. Turns out, a powerful ally might already be within his grasp. But is he willing to risk his own sanity to reach them?“
There is a surprising amount of evidence in this one little blurb. Time for a shit ton of single word analysis!
-A "powerful ally”
Yeah. So we already can guess from this term we aren’t exactly talking about Wheeljack, are we? The use of the word “powerful” suggests the character/s referred to has a force of sorts that Starscream does not, whilst the use of the word “ally” clearly states they must either have some form of alliance with Starscream or must have stayed neutral.
-Having to “risk his own sanity”
Let’s get down to business. A major clue hidden in plain sight, note the word “sanity”. Not reputation, job, life at risk, but his “sanity” of all things? The word choice is important, as it makes you think about a more… psychological issue. The idea of “risk(ing) his own sanity” likely refers to an imminent control or function issue (I don’t remember any torture or long-term abuse last time I asked someone for help), which I can only think of two examples for. The first is combiner Starscream. Yes, that show was weird, but it included an interesting plot point of Starscream almost taking over the Enigma of Combination. This sort of overpowered nonsense seems like a valid enough reason for concern about combining in any book. The second is titan merging. Even though Starscream has never attempted titan merging, we know even a trained cityspeaker can slip up, so the risks Starscream could face are tremendous.
-Having to “reach them”
This is a little more cryptic. If you look waaaayyy too much into this piece of language, you’ll figure out sooner or later you do not “reach” a person/s. This can only suggest there is some form of journey - mental or physical - he must take to “reach” this particular ally. And, well… you cannot “reach” a combiner, you join it; you can, however, “reach” a titan.
-Bonus! “I was not actually involved in the Combiner Wars cartoon and as far as I know, it is not in TAAO’s continuity, so…that’s all I’ve got.”
This is THE Mairghread Scott talking of the events in the Combiner Wars cartoon, and letting slip that Starscream’s transformation has nothing to do with TAAO. Considering Scott answered after starting TAAO #12, it’s unlikely that, if Starscream reacts like that whenever he uses the Enigma, Scott would have Starscream combine anytime soon.
Deep reds and electric blues painted over a black frame and a pale white face, Windblade’s look was distinctive. You could pick the Cityspeaker out in a crowd, her gold headpiece glinting in the sun, her blue optics alive and full of fire. Bright red outlined the shape of her lips, matching the red of the marks around her eyes.
She would’ve been the most beautiful thing he’d ever laid his optics on if it weren’t for the fact he had already seen his own reflection.
Starscream was in love with Windblade, even if his friends—if he could even call them his friends—thought he had a funny way of showing it. They just didn’t understand his dynamic with Windblade. What kept their relationship alive was the unpredictability; the never knowing whether to expect affection or verbal combat. Starscream was sure that without that level of spontaneity their relationship would have fizzled out and died. There’d be no passion; no vibrancy. It would be dead.
They just didn’t understand.
Windblade often wondered why Starscream even had an apartment if he spent all his time at Iacon.
Yet again, she sat, alone, in his apartment, her optics picking over her surroundings. It had hardly anything that told her of the mech that occupied it—it still had that empty, lonely feeling that accompanied brand new living spaces. It didn’t feel like home to Windblade. Apparently, it didn’t feel like home to Starscream either.
She could call Chromia. Of course she could. Chromia wasn’t overly fond of anything to do with Starscream, but she was fond of Windblade and the apartment was tolerable due to the distinct lack of the Cybertronian leader. But Chromia also had a life outside of Windblade, even if she never said so. She was quick to drop whatever she was doing for the Cityspeaker, and nothing would ever change that. Windblade knew this.
But she wasn’t going to call Chromia. Not tonight. She relied too heavily on Chromia to fill the void; she needed to learn how to drive away the loneliness herself. Besides, it wasn’t Chromia’s job to make her feel whole. Hell, it wasn’t even Starscream’s.
It was hers.
But how could she, when Starscream made it so hard? He was hardly there and when he was, they argued, their words like fists and brass knuckles, their glares like knives. How could she, when Starscream just had to say two words and storm out the door, and then she was left alone with her thoughts again, those two words rattling through her brain and shaking her to her core?
She used to cry. She didn’t anymore.
Starscream preferred staying at Iacon to going home.
He didn’t know why. He figured he just liked working. Plus, he could freely talk to Bumblebee’s phantasm without worrying about whether or not bots would hear him “talking to himself.” The last thing he needed was Cybertron thinking its leader had gone crazy.
He hadn’t liked going home before Windblade. It reminded him of life before Megatron, life before the war, and he hated it. He hated those memories of happier times, so he stayed as far away from them as possible.
He still hated going home. But for a different reason.
Windblade was an insufferable little know-it-all, and if he slipped up—spoke to the phantasm out loud, and she heard… He’d never hear the end of it. No, she’d insist on therapy and talking and he knew she’d tear apart any arguments he had in seconds. He hated that about her; he hated that she was smart and caring and persistent but at the same time he loved that she was all those things but he didn’t know how to deal with things he loved so he was cruel. He was cruel, but he had reasons to be cruel—the war screwed up his circuits and honestly, nobody would remember how to love after fighting with Megatron for so long. He was justified.
She understood. He was fine. She was fine.
It was fine.
Everything was just fine.
Windblade wished he had never come home.
She couldn’t remember what they were fighting about—she just knew they were screaming, hurling abuse at each other, and it was going nowhere fast.
Starscream was a master of the derisive laugh, and he employed it often. It hurt her when he laughed at her. It made her feel so small, like what she was saying had no merit. She knew he wasn’t listening, but at the very least he shouldn’t laugh at her. What she said mattered. It had merit.
She mattered. She had merit.
She wished he’d stop laughing.
He eyed her and scoffed. “You’re worthless,” he said, before storming out of the apartment.
She always felt empty after these fights. She was empty when he wasn’t there, and emptier when he was. Everything about her sagged—her shoulders, her wings, her head. He sucked the life out of her. It wasn’t fair.
She saw her muted reflection in the metal of the table. She looked… dull. Depressed. Like she ought to be dead. Her colours had faded away, and while she knew it was just her reflection because she could see the red metal that made up the frills on her arms: they were still a vibrant, passionate red—her reflection looked dead. She looked dead, and she was forced to confront a simple, powerful truth: Starscream loved her.
But he was killing her.
For the first time in a long time, Windblade began to cry.
When Starscream returned, Chromia was helping a distraught Windblade move her things out of the apartment. Confusion hit him like a bag of bricks. What was happening? Why? He thought she had understood… Had she not understood after all?
One look at her face, her stature that of a defeated femme, her colours no longer as bright as he remembered told him everything.
Chromia stood beside her, her frame still strong and proud. The blue of her armour was bright and vibrant, and she shone like a light in the dark hallway, her glow somehow warm and protective. Her face contorted into a look of disgust.
“This is all your fault,” she hissed at him, before ushering Windblade out the door.
Starscream stepped into his apartment. It was even emptier than it had been before. Once again, he felt loneliness wash over him like the tide. Loneliness and sadness filled the empty space, making the room feel cramped and claustrophobic.
Starscream felt like his colours had dullened too.
I like the little insights into Starscream’s perspective on the world. Cityspeakers? Fussy. Chromia? Kinda dumb.
Also for some reason the image of Vigilem’s corpse kneeling outside the city in robot mode made me realise how freaking weird the whole Titan thing is. Like, the Iaconians just have a giant corpse on their doorstep that looks like a bigger version of them and they’re cannibalising it. I mean, how freaking weird would it be if a giant human corpse was just…sitting around. And then there’s the whole thing where they live inside the Titans, that’s like living inside a giant person, going about your day doing all your bits and pieces while inside someone else. That’s…ew…ewwwwwww. Transformers are nasty.
Then again we mammals start our existences as disembodied floating assholes so I guess we’re not on high ground.
One of the things about Windblade that people have noticed is that Chromia not only bombed a relatively busy sector of Metroplex for the sole purpose of scaring Windblade off and head home.
And going home would have also carried a great price with it.
So the main question is, why hasn’t anything been done about this? One would have expected Starscream, the schemer and backstabber of the Transformers Franchise, to have done something already.
The thing is, post-Chaos we’ve seen Starscream play the long game. He’s showing patience, he’s showing how he can turn a situation around for him to profit off it.
And Starscream is not lacking resources to fake evidence, so why would he even be lacking resources to find actual evidence as well, or fake evidence that would collaborate with the actual events?
Starscream and Windblade made a deal. It would be hard to be rid of just one as the other would be an unfortunate casualty of that action. Windblade’s responsible for Metroplex’ well being, and played to Starscream’s greed and let him be the face of Cybertron as the colonies were contacted.
But those events have passed. That little piece of self-invited blackmail would have expired. So why is Starscream holding back now?
He certainly has no lack of opportunty to deal with Windblade and by extension Chromia.
The only reason for why Starscream would save Windblade is because he still needs her. But it isn’t for Metroplex as there are other cityspeakers on Caminus that can take her place. It isn’t for the colonies as Metroplex can, without killing himself or anyone in him, open the spacebridge to the colonies.
So it is something else that Starscream needs from Windblade.
Windblade has been amassing allies, both on Cybertron and on the other colonies. Removing her would invite a rather unstable rift in the newly formed Council of Worlds which Starscream might not be able to control.
But that’s still after Windblade lost her leverage. Either the time since the Combiner Wars to now has been too short for Starscream to properly execute Windblade and Chromia’s removal, or there is one other thing he’s using her for.
Right now Windblade is a very prominent figure. Caminus and Cybertron have very close ties and the two worlds were the founders of the Council. Windblade is also a Cityspeaker for Metroplex, so she does end up representing Cybertron to a degree, allowing Starscream to use her as a distraction. Because when Windblade gets removed out of the equation, the spotlight goes back on Starscream.
And if the spotlight will end up shining on him, it might draw out some unfortunate images of him that could make people question his ability to lead.
[Felt like writing something where Windblade initiated the flirting for a change, and Starscream’s the reluctant one. Experimenting with Role Reversal, so there’s some deviation from canon characterizations, but trying to keep it to a minimum. Not sure if I’ll stick with it or not. *ponders*]
Characters: Windblade and Starscream ( Windblade x Starscream Pairing)
Rating: PG for Dubious Consent, Making Out, and a little Rough-Housing
Summary: Starscream is pouting and Windblade thinks that is the perfect time to press his buttons a bit. Who knows? She might even get a kiss out of it.
This was definitely an interesting take on the character. At first very prideful. Also much more “active” than IDW Windblade. She’s ready to take down ‘Cons wherever she goes. She and Sideswipe actually make a very good couple.
Despite her pride (probably puffed up from where Primus gave her power), she learns. That is part of what I enjoy about RID2015: people learn. I read in a post a while back that the character development is real. Windblade is a good example of this.
Except stubbornhead RID Prime. He needs to gets a clue.
Also, fun note: I think she may have started out in a position similar to CitySpeaker. I got this from the orginal scene where she’s talking to Cybertron’s core, like IDW Windblade talks to Metroplex directly to his brain. Fun note.
The ending of Windblade has reached Rosebud status, right? I can talk about this open and freely without a cut? We’ll say yes. XD
The longer I think about Chromia in Windblade the more I love her part, her role in the story, and well, Chromia as a character. I’ve discussed in length before that I felt her being the culprit ultimately added a level of depth to her character that was greatly needed, but I also loved how just how low that she fell once things started crumbling around her.
I feel like her original plan before anything went wrong, was to get the Space Bridge she had found working in secret, so that when it was functional she could just pick Windblade up and drag them both home to Caminus. But when Windblade started to notice the power failures she needed a distraction: Thus the Bomb. Which then could lead to two things, that I feel both would have worked in her favor: 1) Windblade backs off her hunt because she’s scared for her life, leaving Chromia time to work in peace again, or 2) Windblade wants to go home, and Chromia gets her original goal with or without Metroplex.
Chromia wasn’t expecting Windblade to pick a third option: Hunt down her “killer" and solve the energy issues. At first you see her try and encourage framing Starscream to hopefully get Windblade more open to leaving, but then Windblade gets captured and Chromia gets desperate.
Just look at her in this final scene. There isn’t a moment above where Chromia is thinking about Windblade as anything but a tool to get home (which I fully believe she regrets by the end of the issue). Chromia’s screaming at her to do something that’s possibly fatal by connecting to Metroplex. And once she’s there and finds the bridge–Chromia stops at nothing to get her to use it.
“I’m thinking about you! I want to protect you! It’s all about you Windblade, I swear. I’m just trying to do what’s best! Protecting you means taking us home! You want to go home don’t you? Let’s go home!"
That’s Chromia’s argument in a nutshell. In this particular case, it’s rather manipulative and unsettling.
Going home isn’t in Windblade’s best interest.
Windblade left Caminus in order to find and protect Metroplex, to become his Cityspeaker. That’s the life that she chose. And when she found him, Windblade chose to serve Metroplex and aid Cybertron. She wants to make life better for their citizens, so she can also help her home. To do that, she has to stay on Cybertron. That was Windblade’s choice, and what she decided.
Windblade was homesick, but that didn’t override her desires to help and serve.
Chromia is ignoring all of that, and those are things that she has to know. Windblade trusts and talks to Chromia all the time. They’re friends, close friends. And yet, Chromia is asking Windblade to give up Metroplex. She’s asking her to give up the planet they were looking for. Chromia is asking Windblade to forget this planet, possibly murder hundreds of citizens, to go home as a failure.
Nothing about that is for Windblade, and Chromia knows it.
And that speaks mountains to how desperate she wants to go home. Be it loneliness, or even possibly warped good intentions (I won’t throw out that Chromia wanted to protect Windblade, but it twisted into something very different as time passed), Chromia was willing to give up everything for this.
And that makes Chromia so relatable. She hit a low point, and things got out of her control. Instead of coming forward and talking about it, she lied and tried to cover things up. Which in turn led to things she couldn’t control or predict. Which further spiraled out until she to this point where she’s emotionally manipulating the person she cares about most into doing something that will harm her. She’s made a mistake, and handled it poorly, and really–who hasn’t done that? Who hasn’t hurt a friend on accident in a selfish event? And who hasn’t regretted it? Chromia’s real here, and it brings her to life.
This is Chromia’s fall, and the best part of the issue–is that she realizes how bad she screwed up. Her formal attitude after Windblade takes the fall for her, hints that Chromia’s thinking very hard about everything that’s happened. She’s remorseful.
Sometimes, great characters need to fall to climb back up again. And Chromia is a great character, and I can not wait to see what mountains she climbs and conquers after this.