Orion plugged into the console and readied the link. He glanced warily over his shoulder, but there was no one else in the Archives to pay him a bit of attention. And if he listened through his datalink rather than through the speakers, perhaps no one would notice.
He cycled a ventilation and opened the message Jazz had forwarded to him. The music had Jazz’s seal of approval, two thumbs up, and he promised that it would get Orion’s spark to hopping.
Such music was forbidden. Orion would lose a week’s worth of pay if he was caught.
But he had to know. He’d heard rumors of this Megatronus, whose vocals could send a surge through a mech’s spark and maybe even make him spontaneously overlord. Orion had heard that he spoke of forbidden things, that he urged his fans to think for themselves and live for the arts.
Orion wanted to hear for himself.
So he clicked the link and braced himself. His optics widened when he realized there was video as well as audio attached. His screen was filled with a dark club, the stage itself lit up with light and flame.
The mech who took center stage was large and silver, his plating giving evidence of a life spent underground. He held an instrument, something Orion could not identify as it looked homemade. The roar of the crowd drowned out his intro, and the moment the first strains of the song poured through the crackling speakers, the crowd got even louder.
Orion felt the beat pulsing through his systems. He wished he could be there, in that crowd, feeling the music with his pedes and his frame. He wished to be surrounded by that noise and life.
And then the mech’s vocals poured out, dark and gritty, a lyrical tirade against the injustice of the society that currently held them down, and Orion’s ventilations caught. His fingers trembled where they gripped the edge of the desk.
He watched as Megatronus strutted back and forth across the stage, effortlessly carrying his instrument, his vocals projecting loud and sure. He looked straight into the camera broadcasting his show, his blue optics ablaze with an inner fire.
It felt as though he were singing to Orion himself.
Orion’s vocalizer stalled. And he knew, in that moment, he had to meet this Megatronus, the singer who spoke straight to Orion’s spark.