[IDW] Kings of Wishful Thinking

The hardest part of being in love with Rodimus… was being in love with Rodimus.

Admitting the truth was something Drift didn’t dare do. He treasured their relationship as it currently stood, and he didn’t want to compromise that with awkwardness or that painful uneasy hurt that came along with a gentle rejection. It was easier, in many ways, to keep burying the emotions down deep.

Though Rodimus certainly didn’t make it easy.

He flirted. It was in his nature, he flirted with everyone. Rodimus was a mech filled with jokes and smiles and casual touches and flirtatious touches, and every time his fingers came anywhere in contact with Drift’s armor, Drift’s internals blazed with heat. Only practice, years spent concealing everything he didn’t want others to see, kept the longing from being written in his field and on his face.

But he longed. Primus, did he long.

What made it worse was that it was so hard to tell with Rodimus. Sometimes, Drift was absolutely certain there could never be anything between them.

And other times, Rodimus’ behavior seemed to indicate that maybe he felt the same way, too. Sometimes, he’d look at Drift, and Drift swore there were echoes of the same longing in his optics that Drift carried in his spark.

There were hints, too, in the way Rodimus acted around him. In the jokes, the nonchalant touches, the soft flick of his hand down Drift’s arm, across his back, over his shoulders. He’d rest his hand, sometimes, at the base of Drift’s backstrut. Just accidental, but oh so warm and present. And it felt intimate, as much as an embrace or a nuzzle.

Drift tensed, expecting the hand to slide further down, brush his aft, something. He begged for some kind of sign that Rodimus felt the same way, that he would be interested in pursuing something more between them. But then the hand would slide away, vanish, the moment would pass, and Drift’s armor was left feeling cold.

Rodimus flirted. He flirted with everybody. He had a reputation before the Lost Light even. Everyone knew he was easy, that he hopped in and out of berths as quickly as Jackpot made and lost bets. Drift didn’t want to give in, become another designation for Rodimus to add to some internal list of boasting. He didn’t want to be another story for Rodimus to brag about.

And yet, he was so tempted. Oh, so tempted. Especially when Rodimus was being particularly flirtatious, or he was close enough to touch.

Training him how to use a sword for example. Those were moments always fraught with tension.

The press of their frames together. The heat of Rodimus, always several degrees hotter than other mechs. The way he smelled, like cleanser and spicy wax and stardust. The way he fumbled, and the way Drift had to touch him, to direct his fingers, his pose, the way he held himself.

He would guide Rodimus from behind, his panel inches from Rodimus’ aft, and his fingers itched to touch. To stroke the bright red curves and taste the happily twitching spoiler inches from him.

Or when they would work together on something, clustered around a tiny table, their heads so close, and their shoulders bumping. Rodimus’ soft laughs echoed in his audials, and his field hummed with happiness. His spoiler twitched so cutely, and Drift wanted to kiss him so badly that his mouth watered and his lips tingled.

It was all enough to drive even the sanest of mechs mad. It certainly was enough to send Drift repeatedly retreating back to his habsuite, where he would bury his moans in a pillow and furiously stroke himself to completion, shamefully spilling transfluid into his cupped hand. He ruined many a pillow this way, stuffing it between his thighs and rutting upon it until his throbbing valve soaked the fabric in lubricant, and the charge of his overloads left scorchmarks in the mesh.

The sheer frustration of it all made Drift a chaotic mess, and he knew it. It was all he could do to keep his energy field reined in. Every night spent self-servicing was never enough. His overloads felt shallow. His valve pulsed emptily, no matter how many toys he stuffed into it. His spike spilled weakly, and he yearned. Primus, did he yearn.

In retrospect, the unrequited nature of his feelings might have been what was to blame for his current predicament.

He woke on his berth, and he was ablaze. His entire frame felt as though someone had set him afire. His cables and struts ached. His spark pulsed faster than usual. His array throbbed, his valve slick and leaking, his spike pressing painfully against the panel concealing it. He gasped for ventilations, condensation already starting to gather and a notification helpfully streamed across his HUD.

Heat protocols activated.

Great, just fragging great.

Drift groaned, rolled over on his berth, shoved a pillow under his hips, and treated himself to a dull overload that barely took the edge off. Need still roared through him. His frame felt dipped in a slag pit. He craved the touch of another.

Of course he would go into heat right now. Of course he would.

It was going to be a long, long week.

Heats were no big deal. Usually. But without a partner to help mitigate the unrelenting onslaught of charge, and unwilling to take someone on even casually, Drift was going to be miserable.

Something to look forward to, he supposed.

He hauled his aft out of the berth and wiped himself down quickly, shuddering as the cloth passed over his now sensitive panel. He stripped the cover of the berth, making a mental note to replace it once the heat had run its course. No point in doing so now. Undoubtedly he’d be making quite the mess every day.

Drift shuddered.

He forced himself to attend his duties, to push the arousal down deep and bury it. He wasn’t some interfacing crazed addict. It didn’t matter if he was in heat or not. He could ignore it. He could excuse himself to self-service in a closet if need be. He could control himself and fight it.

After all, he’d been a perfect gentlemen in Rodimus’ presence. He could do this.

Saying so, however, was much harder than doing so.

The first day was easiest. Drift avoided Rodimus at all costs, ridiculously pleased when he could pass command off to Ultra Magnus after having taken it over from Rodimus over the comms. He kept his distance from other mechs. He avoided eye contact. He only excused himself twice to force his frame through a bland overload, and knew he came back to the bridge smelling of ozone.

Luckily, no one on shift was tactless enough to comment.

Drift went back to his habsuite and rubbed out to more overloads, Rodimus’ name on his lips, and a yearning in his spark. Each was more mechanic than the last, filling a need rather than sating one. They left him hungrier. Wetter. Struggling to tuck his pressurized spike back behind his panel when his next shift arrived.

Not even fatigue could stave off the intense need that assaulted his frame. He poured heat, his armor lifted to speed up cooling. His plating rattled. His field was a frazzling whirr around him, and he didn’t fail to notice that no few mechs kept their distance. He must have felt grating to them.

He thought, maybe he should consider asking someone else to help. The discomfort got worse, until all he could think about was interfacing. The taste and scent of another mech’s valve. The feel of a spike. The thick tang of lubricant or transfluid. The press of a warm frame against his.

Drift fidgeted all throughout his shift. He didn’t dare look too closely at any of the crew, because his gaze started to linger. To ogle. He admired Pipes’ sleek curves and Mainframe’s robust frame, and the sway of Sunstreaker’s hips. He imagined what their arrays might look like.

Perhaps Pipes was small, but thick, stroking every one of the nodes embedded in his mesh. Sunstreaker, in contrast, was long, and would pound on Drift’s ceiling node relentlessly, shooting his load up into Drift’s gestational tank.

He thought of others then. Found himself fantasizing about mechs he’d have never considered before. Ultra Magnus was massive, perhaps his spike was as well. He’d spread Drift’s legs wide as he pounded into Drift. Surely Ratchet, alive for millennia and a medic, knew all kinds of tricks and treats. He had those clever fingers, too.

Need yawed inside of him.

When he passed command off to Hound, Drift swore it felt like the energon in his lines were boiling. His spike throbbed behind his panel, doming the metal. Lubricant gathered in his valve, and he wondered if it would soon slick his thighs, too.

“Are you all right?” Hound asked him, field gentle in its concern.

Frag me now. Please.

Drift shook his head. He didn’t let the plea escape his lips, no matter how much he wanted to. Hound smelled so good, and they were of a size. Perfect for kissing. He was bulkier, though. Probably strong enough to press Drift against that wall right there, frag him into it, leave strips of paint in his wake.

“Just tired,” Drift forced out, and offered a wan smile. “Nothing recharge won’t cure.”

Hound squinted at him. “If you say so.” He didn’t look convinced.

Drift spun on a heelstrut and strode away before the other mech could question him further. The longing pulsed in his spark like it would possess him. He pressed his thighs together, fearing that lubricant had slipped free of his panel.

He made a beeline toward his habsuite, resisting the urge to scrub the heel of his palm over his groin. He shuddered, charge crawling out from beneath his armor, and heat wafting out from him. Lubricant pooled in his groin, sloshing against his panel. He swore that his spike dented the locked shutter.

“Whoa, you okay there, Drift?”

Drift spun, narrowly avoiding a collision at the last second. His vents stuttered, his energy field latching on to one so near, within touching distance. It took him several embarrassing seconds for his processor to recognize Smokescreen, the Praxian’s easygoing smile making Drift’s tanks flipflop.

Smokescreen’s panels were pretty. Drift was willing to bet they fluttered in overload. He’d heard Praxian’s had stamina for cycles. He could use a little stamina right now. A lot of it in fact.

“Fine,” he said, and if it came out curt, and a touch raspy, well, he’d apologize later.

Smokescreen arched one orbital ridge. “You sure about that?”

Primus, he smelled good. Drift moved closer, their armor millimeters apart, and heard a thunk as Smokescreen’s backplate hit the corridor wall behind him.

“You on shift?” Drift asked, tilting his head. His valve pulsed longingly, calipers squeezing down on nothing.

“No,” Smokescreen replied, drawing out the vowel. “Was on my way to the rec actually.”

“So you’re not busy,” Drift purred, and ex-vented a burst of heated air against Smokescreen’s armor as he caged the other mech against the wall. Primus, he could already imagine Smokescreen inside of him, spike stroking all of his desperate nodes so perfectly. “Frag me?”

Smokescreen’s optics rounded. “I, uh, don’t think–”

Drift’s engine rumbled. He pressed their chestplates together, shivering as the mere contact sent charge through his lines. “I’m in heat,” he growled softly. “And right now, I could really, really use your spike.”

Smokescreen audibly worked his intake. “Wow,” he said, and slid to the right, ducking up under Drift’s arm to make his escape. “Not that I’m not flattered, because I am, but uh–” His gaze darted left and right. “Gonna have to take a rain check.”

“You said you weren’t busy,” Drift said as he spun toward Smokescreen, his engine revving. He resisted the urge to bare his array here and now in a desperate attempt to convince Smokescreen to accept his offer.

Drift ached.

Smokescreen backed up so quickly, Drift was surprised he didn’t trip on his pedes. “Too busy for this,” he said, making a vague gesture flicking between himself and Drift. “And uh… yeah. Sorry, sir.”

With that, he all but fled, his door wings twitching madly behind him.

Drift tried not to feel insulted.

Luckily, the intense need boiling in his lines meant he only spared himself a few seconds of offense before he spun and returned to the hunt. He needed a spike. He needed a fragging. And he needed it now.

He needed someone. Anyone. He needed a spike or a valve. He needed a mouth, or a hand. Or several spikes. Or several hands. He needed something inside of him, someone over him, someone beneath him.

He needed.

There were always mechs in the training room this time of the cycle, weren’t there? Surely someone in there wanted to work off some steam in the berth rather than on the mat?

Drift’s spark surged and flipped. Yes, that sounded like a mighty fine idea indeed.

He hurried a deck down and three halls over to the massive training room. Honestly, it was a series of training rooms, but everyone tended to gravitate toward the larger space best suited for sparring and hand-to-hand combat.

Perfect.

Drift strolled inside, plating ruffled, heat pouring from his substructure, and his field surging ahead of him with eager invitation. He scanned the interior with hope in his optics, need dripping out from his panels. He hoped he hadn’t left lubricant spots in his wake, and then it occurred to him that he didn’t care. Maybe someone would follow the drops and track him down. Someone willing to frag him into oblivion.

No one was here.

What the frag.

Drift’s mouth nearly dropped. Of all the times for there to be no one training, now was it. There wasn’t even a lone mini-bot in the corner. Frag, at this point, he really would settle for Ultra Magnus if it meant a spike in him.

Ugh.

Drift cycled a ventilation and scraped a hand down his face. The prospect of going back to wandering the hall was unappealing. He couldn’t return to his hab feeling like this. There was always Swerve’s, but wasn’t far gone enough to rely on pouncing on someone inebriated. He still had some self-control.

He had the training room to himself. Might as well make the most of it. Maybe he could practice the arousal away. Maybe he could ignore it if he focused on everything the Circle of Light had attempted to teach him. He drew his swords and slipped into his favorite and most familiar meditation form.

Maybe he could will the need away. It was worth a shot.

~

The second call, this time a touch panicked, came from Smokescreen, a mech not known to panic. Exaggeration, yes. But not the note of hysteria Rodimus could hear in his comm.

Apparently, something was Up with Drift. And since Rodimus had tried pinging Ratchet and received an unfriendly ‘frag off’ in return, it was up to Rodimus to find out why Drift was apparently seething with volcanic heat and making passes at mechs he’d never exchanged two words with before.

Hound, currently on duty on the command deck, said that Drift was in the training room. Which had cleared itself, apparently, prior to Drift’s arrival. He’d also expressed concern about Drift, claiming that something was off.

Rodimus found that a little amusing. And worrisome. Because on top of Drift’s odd behavior toward other mechs on the Lost Light, he’d been avoiding Rodimus as though he had cosmic rust. Well, they did have their moments sometimes.

Drift would look at him, and his optics would be all hot and bright. Rodimus would feel shivers race down his spinal strut. He’d think that maybe there was something there, maybe Drift returned the feelings Rodimus buried in his spark. But then Drift would flee and the moment would be gone, and Rodimus was left floundering.

So.

Time to find some answers.

Rodimus strode toward the training center with purpose in his stride and determination painted onto his face. His spoiler flicked behind him, betraying his agitation. He didn’t know what he was going to find when he got there. He expected all kinds of crazy behavior.

He did not think he’d walk into the main arena and find Drift calmly and collectively going through a series of martial forms. Oh, sure his friend’s armor was a touch flared and even from the distance, Rodimus could hear his fans whirring and clunking. But it wasn’t like Drift’s optics were glowing with murderous intent or looked ready to attack someone.

Why on Cybertron was everyone freaking out?

“There you are!” Rodimus said, interjecting cheer into his vocals, and forcing a big smile on his face. “I’ve been looking everywhere. You can be a hard mech to find, you know. Sure you’ve never been a spy or something?”

Drift whirled toward him, optics a touch wide and bright. “Rodimus!” He sounded both agitated and that was pretty close to a yelp actually. “What are you doing here?”

Rodimus cycled his optics. “Looking for you,” he repeated and planted his hands on his hips. “Duh. What are you doing here?”

Drift’s engine revved. He looked at his swords. “Training.”

“Uh huh.” Rodimus hopped up onto the platform and moved closer to Drift, though he didn’t fail to notice that Drift was subtly backing away. And the mat was wet around Drift, too. Was he leaking? “Why are you doing that?”

“Because it never hurts to practice. Something I wish you would learn,” Drift said with a little laugh, a careful one, Rodimus noticed. He always tried to keep his smiles shallow, so as to hide his denta.

Rodimus narrowed his optics. “No, I mean, why do you keep trying to avoid me?” He gestured toward Drift, who had backed himself against the wall and was now sliding along the length of it, all to keep distance between himself and Rodimus.

“What are you talking about? I just gave you lessons last week,” Drift said as his swords returned to their sheaths. His optics darted about, as if gauging the distance between himself and the door, even though Rodimus stood between them.

Rodimus huffed. “That was last week. I’m talking about right now.” He pointed to the floor between them as he maneuvered to cut Drift off. “And everyone says you’re acting weird, too. Well, weird for you. Is there something wrong? You know you can–”

He stopped, words cutting off short. A whiff of something filtered into his vents, sweet and savory and tangy. It made his engine rev and his spark take notice. It made his interfacing array gave him a ping.

“Wait,” Rodimus said as he stopped within touching distance, though his frame longed to keep surging forward, toward the tantalizing heat and scent now emanating from Drift. “Are you in heat?”

Drift’s hands fisted at his sides, and he looked like he was shaking, his optics growing brighter. “I… I need…” He looked up at Rodimus and swept his glossa over his lips, stumbling a step closer rather than away.

The scent slammed into Rodimus then, a deluge of enticing heat and desire, where before it had only been pale whiffs. Rodimus groaned, his interface array lighting up with fireworks, the longing in his spark turning into a craving need.

Oh, Primus. Drift was in heat.

Rodimus could see it now. The lubricant glittering on his inner thighs, explaining the dampness on the map. The fully flexed plating. The tiny curls of charge dancing out from his substructure.

He could feel the heat wafting off Drift, buffeting his frame. They were so close now. When had they gotten so close?

“Oh, damn, Drift. I’m sorry,” Rodimus babbled, even as his fingers twitched, and he wanted to touch. “Why didn’t you say something? I would’ve– Oy!”

Thump!

Rodimus’ back hit the padded mat, his spoiler twinging at the rough impact. His head spun dizzily as Drift landed on top of him, his hands on Rodimus’ shoulders, his aft firmly planted on Rodimus’ hips and groin. His panel was already open, dripping hot lubricant onto Rodimus’ and he smelled so damn good.

Drift’s engine growled, his face so near to Rodimus’, his field one of desperation and yearning.

“Frag me,” he demanded, engine shifting into a hungry whine. “Please, Roddy.” He ground down, his swollen rim leaving streaks in Rodimus’ armor.

He gripped Drift’s arms, fingers tight, resisting the urge to buck up, and firmly telling his panel to remain shut. “I s-shouldn’t,” Rodimus stammered even as Drift pressed his face into Rodimus’ throat and started ex-venting moist heat over his cables. “You’re not thinking straight.”

Drift panted against his cables. “Thinking fine,” he gritted out, all static laced, his denta grazing Rodimus’ intake and his valve grinding down harder. Rodimus’ panel jittered in place. “Want you to frag me. Now. Hard.”

Rodimus swallowed thickly. His hands slid up and down Drift’s arms, arousal shooting through him like a lightning bolt. “I-is that you saying that? Or the heat?”

Drift’s knees pressed in on his hips. He made a sound, like a whimper. “Does it matter?”

“Yeah, it kinda does.” Rodimus shook, his spike pushing at his panel, making the thin metal dome. Drift was heat and moisture above him, and all he wanted to do was sink into that invitation.

Blast it. Why did he have to choose now to be responsible? He could blame it on the heat. Say that Drift’s scent made him do crazy things. No one would think twice about it.

Drift growled again. His engine revved so hard it vibrated. “Please,” he begged, lubricants soaking Rodimus’ groin. “It hurts.”

Slag.

At this point, it would just be cruel to deny him. Wouldn’t it?

“Rodimus Prime!”

The barking of his name and his almost-title made Rodimus startle and whip his head to the right. Ratchet, because of course it was Ratchet, thundered across the training room floor like a mech on a mission.

“And Drift, you too. Take your hands off each other right this instant!” Ratchet continued in a tone that even Rodimus wanted to leap to obey. “I know for a fact you don’t have a shunt installed, and I’m not having any hatchlings on this quest!”

No shunt?

Rodimus paled as Drift stiffened. He was so not ready to be a caretaker.

Drift whined, a pitiful sound. His hips rocked atop Rodimus’ again, his field thick with need and heat. And then he vanished, plucked from Rodimus’ frame as though he was a misbehaving turbohound, and slung over Ratchet’s shoulder like he weighed nothing.

Rodimus forced himself to his feet, his knees wobbling, and looked down to see Drift’s lubricants streaking his hips and groin. It smelled as delicious Drift did.

“Put me down,” Drift grumbled, ineffectually beating at Ratchet’s back.

“No.” Ratchet’s tone was clipped as he stalked off the mat and stormed toward the door. “You are going to the medbay. You are going to the isolation ward. And you are going to get a calming agent. Understand me?”

Drift went limp atop Ratchet’s shoulder. “Yes, Ratchet,” he muttered, but his limpid gaze stayed focus on Rodimus. There was yearning in it.

Rodimus’ spark clenched. His comm buzzed.

I’ll deal with you later,” Ratchet said.

Rodimus’ shoulders sank. He sighed and scraped a hand over his head. Nothing to do now but clean himself up and wait for the cycle to run its course, he guessed. Talking with Drift would have to wait.

He’d reassure Hound and Smokescreen both as well.

After he’d gone back to his quarters and dealt with some charge of his own.

~

Drift ached. He tried not to squirm on Ratchet’s shoulder, but he was leaking everywhere, he just knew it. He couldn’t get his valve panel to close, and now his spike had joined the party and it was rubbing against Ratchet’s armor, making quite the mess.

It still felt good enough to make Drift shudder. He clenched his hands into fists, pressed them against Ratchet’s back and told himself that he would not overload by humping Ratchet’s shoulder. He wouldn’t.

“Stop squirming,” Ratchet grunted.

Drift huffed. “Can’t.”

Ratchet had an arm hooked around his thighs, keeping him pinned well in place, but every step was jarring and rubbed Drift’s spike against his shoulder. It felt better than it should have, but damn it, Drift needed to overload.

“Try.”

Drift ex-vented and beat his fists upon Ratchet’s back. “I need to be fragged, not relax!” He kicked his feet for good measure, though all they did was flail in the air. His spike throbbed against Ratchet’s shoulder.

“You’ll be fine.”

He heard a ding as the medbay main doors opened, and Ratchet strode inside without hesitation. He did, at least, head straight for the isolation ward, meaning only a few mechs saw Drift being carried about like a misbehaving sparkling.

He sagged and buried his face in Ratchet’s upper back. “I fragged up,” he moaned, the words muffled by Ratchet’s plating. “And now I’m dying.”

He could practically hear Ratchet’s optics roll. “You’re not dying, you idiot. There isn’t a single recorded case of a heat killing a mech.”

“Yeah, because I bet no one’s ever lacked for a partner,” Drift muttered bitterly. His frame began to shake, his spike spilling more pre-fluid against Ratchet’s shoulder. “Am I ugly? Am I unappealing?”

Ratchet sighed audibly. “You certainly don’t shut up, that’s for sure.”

“I’ll be quiet if you frag me,” Drift said, giving his aft a wiggle, though he instantly regretted it as his spike surged with arousal and teetered him straight into pleasure.

Ratchet’s engine growled. “No, thank you.”

Drift’s world turned upside down. He had a moment of freefall before his side impacted a berth, and then he was rolled onto his back, the Great Sword a hot weight against his spinal strut. His head spun dizzily as it took him several seconds to realize that Ratchet had dropped him onto a medberth.

Ratchet’s left shoulder was coated in a mixture of lubricant and prefluid. It was even running down his chestplate.

Drift’s faceplate, audials, and finials all heated. He’d left that mess. How embarrassing.

“You have two hands, take care of your own charge,” Ratchet said, all business, none of it funny. “Get one overload out of the way, and I’ll bring in something to taper off the rest. Got me?”

Drift seeped into the berth. “Here?”

“Not taking your aft anywhere else.”

Drift nibbled on his bottom lip. He looked up at Ratchet, giving him his most pleading stare. “Sure you don’t want to help?”

Ratchet sighed and pinched his nasal ridge. “Kid, you and I both know I’m not the one you want.”

“So? It’s just interfacing.”

“That’s the heat talking, not you.” Ratchet waved dismissively at him and backed toward the door. “Handle that. I’ll be back. And when this is all over, you and our illustrious captain need to sit down and have a little chat. Get me?”

Drift tried and failed not to pout. “Yes, Ratchet.” Arguing with the medic had never done him any good before.

The rest was a foggy haze. Drift dimly remembered Ratchet returning to give him what he claimed was an accelerant, as Drift was in too deep for a retardant or even a reversal. And accelerate it did.

Drift was glad he couldn’t really remember how wanton he’d been. How he’d gasped and pleaded and moaned and whined as he serviced himself over and over again, with his hands and with the toys that mysteriously appeared at his berthside. He was sure he must have gotten up from the berth a couple times to writhe in the washracks, and every time he returned, the berth had been cleaned and the cover changed.

Ratchet was a good mech. Bit of an aft, but a good mech.

It took several days, but the heat abated enough that Drift was finally released of the medbay’s custody. He could still use a ‘face or two and his frame was primed to overload, but he no longer felt like jumping the struts of anyone who crossed his path. He managed to keep his panels closed for several hours in a row. His field reined itself in, and he had all of his mental faculties.

He was still off-duty, however. For the next several days.

Remembering his behavior made Drift’s finials heat. He thought, for the next several days (or maybe centuries, he’d see how long the humiliation lasted), he’d just hide in his habsuite. Not like anyone visited. Surely Rodimus intended to stay well away from him now.

Drift had been, well, he’d been aggressive. Pushy. Demanding. And so wanton. He’d acted like some kind of desperate buymech, begging Rodimus for something Rodimus had never wanted to give.

Ugh.

Yes, better to hide until he could look himself in the mirror again. It should only take another few millennia more this time.

So he did.

He went back to his habsuite. He locked the door. He huddled on the berth and resisted the urge to pull his plush, totally self-indulgent blanket over his helm. He would have poked it with his finials anyway.

Ruined. He’d ruined everything.

And frag it. His frame was heating up again. Ebbing, but not gone, as Ratchet had told him. The heat lingered like a seasonal vent infection, cropping up at the worst times. Like now, when his memory core reminded him of how badly he’d fragged up.

Of how it felt to have Rodimus beneath him. How it felt to grind against Rodimus’ frame, to feel Rodimu’s field so startled and then flattered and then intrigued. How Rodimus’ face had flushed so prettily, and his vents had whooshed, and he’d made that startled noise.

Primus, he was gorgeous. And sexy. Beautiful. Intoxicating. Drift wanted to touch him, kiss him, taste him. He wanted to bury his face between those beautiful thighs and lick Rodimus out. Wanted to hear Rodimus moan and beg him for more. Wanted to feel Rodimus grip his finials, his back, his hips, anything.

Drift groaned and flopped onto his back. His panels snapped open, lubricant spilling out of his valve, soaking his aft and the berth covers. He’d have to change them again, but frag it, he didn’t care right now.

He licked his lips and shoved his hands at his array. He had toys in a chest nearby, but didn’t want to spare the time to grab them. He had fingers. They would do.

Drift scrubbed the heel of his palm over his spikehead, and pinched his anterior node cluster with his other hand. His optical shutters squeezed shut as he groaned, hips bucking into his own hands. Pleasure spooled brightly through him, his array throbbing, the heat returning with a vengeance.

Primus, it felt good. Not perfect. Not mind-blowing. But good enough.

He imagined it was Rodimus’ hands on him instead. Clever gold fingers wrapped around his spike, plunging into his valve, curving just right to stroke that ring of nodes inside his rim. Rodimus’ lips curved into that sexy little smirk of his, one that screamed confidence on the outside, but wavered a little when no one was looking. His optics bright and hungry, appreciative even.

Drift moaned aloud, pleasure skipping through his lines in little bursts. His valve clenched, squeezing out more lubricant.

He imagined Rodimus’ spike plunging into Drift’s valve, igniting his nodes, bringing him to overload after overload. He pretended it was the heat of Rodimus over him, bearing him down, that Rodimus was kissing him, so long and deep.

Drift shuddered. He scrubbed his hands over his array, grinding his palm against his anterior node, desperately chasing overload, his vents roaring.

It was so pathetic. These fantasies were all he had.

Drift whimpered and gnawed on his bottom lip.

But for now, they were good enough.

~

“What? You released him!?”

Ratchet stared at him with narrowed optics. “He’s in heat, Rodimus. Not dying. He’s perfectly fine to sort the rest of it out in the privacy of his habsuite.”

“B-but is that even healthy?” Rodimus demanded, leaning even closer to Ratchet, well aware that he was getting in Ratchet’s personal space.

Something the medic reminded him of with a firm glare and a rev of his engine. Wisely, Rodimus backed down.

Ratchet pinched his nasal ridge. “Rodimus, mechs have been handling their own heat for millennia. It may not be as fun, but I assure you, it’s not dangerous.”

Rodimus gnawed on the inside of his cheek. “You’re sure?”

“Positive.”

Ratchet spun on a heelstrut and strode away from him, exasperation hissing out of his vents. “I released him hours ago. If you’re that concerned, you should check on him.”

What a brilliant idea. Rodimus was ashamed he hadn’t thought of it first. He shouted a ‘thanks’ at Ratchet’s retreating back – receiving a flippant wave in return – and jetted out of the medbay.

He had right to be concerned, didn’t he? Not only was Drift his friend, but also third-in-command. A captain had to know if his crew was healthy, right?

It had nothing to do with the teensy-tiny-raging attraction he had for Drift. Not at all.

Rodimus hurried through the corridors, a pace that was at once familiar. Less than a week ago, he’d tracked down Drift to the training room, where Drift had nearly humped him to overload, his optics glazed with arousal, his frame overcome with heat. Rodimus had never wanted him more.

He wanted him now. Heat or not.

Rodimus shook his head, clearing away the lustful thoughts and replacing them with worry. He was concerned about Drift. That was all it was.

When he arrived, Drift’s door was locked. He didn’t respond to Rodimus’ pings either, and that was worrisome. What if he was unconscious? Who cared what Ratchet said! Maybe Drift was really sick!

Rodimus poked his override into the panel without hesitation. Frag protocol.

The door slid open and Rodimus slid aside, nearly clipping his spoiler on the frame in his haste. “Drift?” There was no answer.

The door hissed back shut, locking automatically behind him. Drift’s quarters were dim, but that wasn’t odd. He seemed to like it when everything was draped in shadows. Like he felt safer or something.

Rodimus.”

Heat crawled up Rodimus’ spike. His optics widened, and he froze as his head swiveled slowly toward the berth, tucked away in an alcove. His vents caught, and Rodimus’ engine revved.

No wonder Drift hadn’t responded to his ping. He was quite obviously… busy.

Rodimus’ mouth went dry.

Drift was on his berth, flat on his back, both of his hands buried between his thighs. His optics were shuttered, his mouth open as he panted orally, his lips slick with lubricant. Condensation dotted his armor, and he was making all of these panting, moaning, whimpering noises. The wet sound of his fingers over his array echoed in Rodimus’ audials.

White fingers were painted in lubricant. It soaked the berth beneath his aft. His field was flush with need, with arousal, and as he moaned again, Rodimus realized it was his name Drift was whimpering. It was his designation that Drift whined as he overloaded, thighs quivering as they clamped around his wrists, his spike so spent that it didn’t even twitch. His engine purred, his field flared, and Rodimus’ own rose up to meet it as if called.

The polite thing to do would have been to spin on a heelstrut and leave. But Rodimus’ feet felt rooted in place. His own designation echoed in his audials. Drift looked so gorgeous, so sexy, and Rodimus couldn’t tear his gaze away.

Drift’s optics slitted open. His head turned Rodimus’ direction, and his glossa swept over his lips. His gaze looked hazy, until it at once brightened, and he stiffened. He froze, fingers still buried in his valve, field turning flush with embarrassment.

“R-Rodimus?”

“I, uh, came to check on you,” Rodimus said, his vocalizer glitching before he rebooted it. He rubbed the back of his head. “Got worried when Ratchet said he released you and then you didn’t answer my comm and…” He trailed off, working his intake. He found himself moving closer, not entirely sure it was a conscious decision. “You… you said my name, Drift.”

Drift’s face turned a rosy hue. His armor clamped down, despite the roar of his cooling fans. “Sorry,” he said, and repeated himself a little quieter. “Sorry, I… I’m just sorry.” He made a frustrated noise and shifted on the berth as if he was trying to get smaller, conceal himself.

“Why are you apologizing? Do you even know how much I–” Rodimus cut himself off, embarrassment tainting his own field. “I mean, never mind. I’m the one who’s sorry. I should just go.” He flung a thumb over his shoulder, pointing to the door behind him.

He should leave. He should spin and leave and do the right thing by walking away. Primus, he didn’t want to. But he’d intruded and he was to blame and… and… and…

“You don’t have to go,” Drift said, his focusing ring spiraling outward. “You could… I mean…” His engine revved with a whine, a shudder passing over his armor. “If you wanted…”

Rodimus worked his intake. He found himself at the edge of the berth and couldn’t for the life of him figure out when he’d closed the distance. His hands were already lifted to touch, his fingers trembling.

“I’m not ready for hatchlings, Drift,” Rodimus said, but his mouth was watering and his spark was throbbing.

Drift’s field flickered with disappointment. It tried to withdraw, but Rodimus’ own clung to it stickily.

“But there are other things we can do,” Rodimus offered, and he licked his lips, his optics tracking down Drift’s frame to his groin and the fingers sticky with lubricant. “That is, I mean, if you want to. With me.”

Drift moaned, his hips rolling into his hands, his feet pushing at the berth cover. “Please,” he said.

Rodimus’ restraint shattered. If he’d even had any to begin with.

“Don’t hate me later, okay?” he said as he climbed onto the berth, crawling between Drift’s beautiful thighs.

Drift didn’t say anything. He just moaned, squirming on the berth as his field surged toward Rodimus with hungry request.

Well. Okay then.

Rodimus swallowed thickly as he was treated to the sight of Drift’s array, and the thick scent of Drift’s lubricant filled his olfactory sensors. Drift was still fingering himself, and his valve was swollen and hot. His biolights flickered madly.

He was so gorgeous.

This might be his only chance, Rodimus thought. He might not get another opportunity to touch Drift. To kiss him. To explore. To make Drift feel good.

He’d better make the most of it.

He rested his hands on Drift’s hips, and Drift shuddered. He moaned, thighs parting further, hips rolling toward Rodimus. More lubricant seeped free. Rodimus swallowed and focused.

He swept his palms inward, skirting Drift’s lower abdominal armor, his fingers tracing seams and kibble, stroking over abdominal vents that had always drawn his optics before. He moved upward, stroking the bottom edge of Drift’s chestplate before his fingers splayed over Drift’s hood, thumbs teasing around Drift’s headlights.

Drift shivered. “What…?”

“It’s all right if I touch, isn’t it?” Rodimus asked, his voice barely above a whisper, his attention stolen by the sight of his hands moving over Drift’s frame.

He dragged his hands down Drift’s arm, plucking at the rubber of Drift’s tires. They were just like his own, but somehow a novelty now that they were on Drift’s frame. Rodimus’ fingers teased into the wheelwells, drawing another moan from Drift.

“Yeah, but… hurry,” Drift said, his thighs trembling, his armor clattering. Charge spilled from his substructure, his optics bright and heated. “I need… I need…” He trailed off.

Rodimus’ spark clenched. “Sorry,” he murmured, his audials burning. Here he was taking his time, and Drift was aching with arousal. Heat was no easy thing to ignore. How dare he make Drift wait any longer?

Rodimus sat back on his heels, dragging his attention back to the main event. He admired what he could see of Drift’s array. Lubricant squelched around Drift’s fingers, and the scent of it was maddening. Rodimus’ mouth watered.

There was nothing wrong with a little taste though. Right? So long as he gave Drift what he needed?

Rodimus’ hands smoothed down Drift’s thighs. “Drift, can I lick you?” he asked as Drift’s thighs fell open to him, nearly baring his array further if not for Drift’s fingers still buried within himself.

Drift’s head fell back against the berth, vents blasting open. “Why?” he asked, but his fingers withdrew, dewy with lubricant.

Rodimus wanted to lick Drift’s fingers clean, and restrained himself, but only just. Maybe Drift wouldn’t like that kind of thing.

“Because I want to,” Rodimus breathed, and he looked up Drift’s frame, catching Drift’s gaze. His optics were still bright, but arousal fizzled around the edges. “I want to make you overload with my mouth. I want to taste you. Can I do it?”

Drift’s hands fell away, fisting in the berth cover, giving Rodimus a full view of the pleats of his swollen valve, and the puffiness of his anterior node cluster. He gnawed on his bottom lip, his engine growling.

“Yes,” Drift groaned, and his hips rolled up and toward Rodimus as if begging him. “I mean, if you really want to, you can.”

Rodimus surged forward, cupping Drift’s hips in his hands, and rubbed his cheek along Drift’s valve rim. Lubricant clung stickily to his face, and Rodimus moaned.

“I do,” he purred before he turned his head, pressing a kiss in greeting to Drift’s pulsing anterior node. He smelled of heat and arousal and delicious things.

Rodimus moaned as he lapped a long, wet stripe up Drift’s valve, tasting Drift’s lubricant for the first time. Tangy and sweet, just like he thought.

He heard Drift’s vents catch. Drift’s anterior node pulsed brighter and faster. More lubricant trickled out of his valve, and Rodimus licked him, from caudal lip to main node, lapping it up. He buried his face in Drift’s valve, sucking on the pleats of his rim, and playing with his node, and tasting every inch of the pretty array on display for him.

Primus, but he loved eating valve. He loved it when his partners moaned and squirmed beneath him. He loved the way their thighs pressed in on his head, and the way their engines revved. He loved barely hearing calipers click internally, and watching the biolights flicker and pulse. He loved the taste of lubricant, the feel of swollen dermal mesh against his lips.

Rodimus moaned as he latched onto Drift’s anterior node and sucked on it, his glossa lashing over the throbbing nub. Drift garbled out something unintelligible, his hips bucking, his hands clamping onto Rodimus’ head. His grip wasn’t hard, it didn’t hurt, but it revved Rodimus’ engine like nothing else.

Rodimus sucked and sucked, his hands sliding down to frame Drift’s valve, thumbs pressing on in the plating surrounding the plump metalmesh. A little pressure and he knew it would press in on the lines in his groin, amping the pleasure.

Drift bucked, his field flaring hotly, lubricant gushing out of his valve. He made a little whining noise, his engine stuttering. He was close to overload. Rodimus could taste the charge in his lubricant, in the air.

He wanted it, wanted Drift’s overload. He buried his face between Drift’s thighs, licking and sucking at the delicate dermal mesh, the glittering exterior nodes, shoving his glossa deep into Drift’s valve and feeling the first arrhythmic flutter of calipers around the tip of his glossa. Rodimus moaned, his engine revving, panels popping open as he ground his spike against the berth.

He went back to Drift’s swollen nub and mouthed it, humming vocally as he did so, letting the vibrations pass over Drift’s node.

Drift’s backstrut arched; his engine roared. His hands tightened in their grip on Rodimus’ head before he finally overloaded, his hips rutting up against Rodimus’ mouth in a desperate bid for more pleasure. Rodimus was more than happy to oblige, soothing Drift through his overload with tiny licks and nuzzles until Drift dropped back to the berth. His fans spun, and his vents roared, and he was audibly panting, his face flush.

Primus, he was gorgeous.

Rodimus told him so. He pressed a kiss to Drift’s valve, licking lubricant from his lips, and forced himself up. He climbed up Drift’s frame, leaving kisses in his wake. On Drift’s belly, his chest, over his Autobot symbol, all while Drift squirmed beneath him.

“You’re beautiful. You’re sexy. I’ve wanted you for so long, and I didn’t even know if I could say it,” Rodimus babbled as he finally found himself face to face with Drift, whose lips were swollen as though he’d been gnawing on them.

The perfect solution, then, was to kiss him. So Rodimus did, pressing his lips to Drift’s, and moaning as Drift kissed him back. Rodimus braced his weight on his hands, but arms wrapped around his chassis, tugging him down, until he blanketed Drift with his frame, his spike nestled against Drift’s puffy, soaked array.

Rodimus rolled his hips, his spike grinding against Drift’s valve lips. The tip of it kept nudging Drift’s anterior node and slipping through his lubricant and poking at the swollen metalmesh, and Primus, did it feel good.

Rodimus’ engine rumbled. He nuzzled Drift’s face. “You want another?” he asked as he rocked his spike against Drift’s valve and shivers drizzled down his backstrut. He was aroused, that was a given, and overload tingled in his circuits.

Drift groaned and clutched at his sides, rolling up to meet Rodimus’ tiny thrusts. “You…”

“I’m not talking about me. I’m talking about giving you another one,” Rodimus said as he nibbled on Drift’s audial. He rocked against Drift’s array again, his spike poking and prodding at Drift’s rim and exterior nodes. “Know what? I think you need another one.”

He shifted his weight to one arm and slid a hand between their frames, his fingers finding Drift’s valve. He pushed two past the rim and rubbed the pad of his thumb over Drift’s anterior node, Drift so slick and open that he slid in effortlessly.

Drift shuddered and clutched at his shoulders. His thighs clamped around Rodimus, hips rolling up toward his hand.

“More,” he growled, fingers digging into Rodimus’ seams. His optics slitted open, bright and sparking with desire. “Again.”

Rodimus nuzzled him before nosing into Drift’s intake, his lips exploring the delicate cables there. “Oh, baby, you don’t even have to ask,” he breathed as he curled his fingers and rubbed hard over internal sensor clusters.

Drift moaned and bucked his hips again. “Spike?”

Rodimus nibbled at his intake, feeling Drift’s energon pulse on his lips. “Maybe just a little.” As long as he didn’t overload while spark-sharing, that was fine, right?

Besides, Drift was whimpering and clutching at him, and shoving his valve against Rodimus’ spike. How could he deny Drift? How could he do anything but take himself in hand and guide his spike to Drift’s valve. He allowed a moment to tease, rubbing the head over and over Drift’s throbbing anterior node.

Drift growled, fingers digging into Rodimus’ seams, enough to pinch. “Stop teasing!”

Rodimus shivered. Drift sounded so sexy like that. All demanding and needy and unf! He sealed his mouth over Drift’s, swallowing a moan, before he angled his hips and thrust into Drift in one long, slow push.

Drift’s muffled moan vibrated against his glossa, even as his backstrut arched and he shuddered, over and over, his valve spasming around Rodimus’ spike. His engine whined, thighs trembling where they clamped against Rodimus’ hips, his calipers trying to tug Rodimus deeper.

Oh, Primus. That was so good.

Rodimus tore his mouth away, burying his face in Drift’s throat, trying not to whine himself as he finally bottomed out. He forced himself to still, his spike throbbing as the head of it notched against the currently closed port to Drift’s gestational tank. Rodimus panted, his spike pulsing with need, as he circled his hips in little motions, grinding the base of his array against Drift’s valve.

Drift moaned and arched up against him, clutching Rodimus close, rolling his hips up so that they rocked together. Little arcs of charge spilled out from his armor, even as it leapt between their arrays, exchanging fast between nodes and receptors.

Rodimus panted, his engine revving louder, hard enough to vibrate their frames. His knees dug into the berth, and it felt good just like this, grinding deep into Drift, applying a steady pressure to his anterior node. He didn’t even want to thrust, just wanted to overload like this, pushing and pushing, his lips on Drift’s throat and Drift’s arms squeezing his chassis.

Drift whimpered, his thighs pressing in, his valve spiraling so tightly that Rodimus could barely move. And then Drift overloaded, trembling so hard beneath Rodimus that his armor clattered and his valve ripple-squeezed around Rodimus’ spike.

He moaned, unable to resist the pull of it, the nipping, hungry charge lapping at his spike nodes. Rodimus’ denta grazed Drift’s intake cables as he overloaded, too. Spurts of his transfluid jetted against Drift’s gestational port and ceiling node, and Drift trembled, shaking through another minor overload.

“Oh, Primus,” Drift breathed, his vocals stripped with static. He was still shaking, his frame clamped around Rodimus’. “Nnnn.”

Rodimus nuzzled Drift’s head with his, his ex-vents coming in sharp, humid bursts. “Was a good one,” he slurred, his spike still clasped in the welcome grip of Drift’s valve, calipers twitching around him. “Wasn’t it?”

Drift squeezed him to the point of armor creaking before he loosened his hold. “Yes,” he said and stole Rodimus’ lips, the kiss hungry and demanding. “More,” he growled against Rodimus’ mouth. “More.”

Rodimus moaned, clutching hard to Drift’s hips. He bit into the kiss, nipping at Drift’s lips, before he pulled back and pressed their foreheads together. Drift’s field was open and needy, a tangle of emotions that surely echoed Rodimus’ own, but easy to pick out was the lust and the desire. Those Rodimus shared.

“I’ll show you more,” he said fiercely. He leaned back, sliding his spike free of Drift’s valve as he did so.

Drift whined and made a grab at him, but Rodimus avoided it. He looked down with frank adoration, Drift’s valve twitching and biolights pulsing and fluids dripping free. Rodimus’ mouth watered.

Another taste before the show began perhaps? He tilted his helm and slid a thumb over Drift’s valve rim, stroking the swollen, plump fold.

Oh, yes. Another taste.

Rodimus dropped down, curved his hands around Drift’s hips, and hiked him up so he could bury his face between Drift’s thighs. He hummed with pleasure as he licked a long, wet path up the middle of Drift’s valve, lapping up lubricant and transfluid alike.

Drift quivered against his glossa. His valve was so warm and wet and pliant. His nodes called for attention, and Rodimus kissed and sucked on each one in turn. He played special attention to Drift’s main anterior cluster, giving it a gentle scrape with his denta, before he moved on to the smaller caudal cluster. This one he suckled on, giving it the attention it rarely received.

Drift moaned, squirming in Rodimus’ grip. His hands pet the top of Rodimus’ head, fingering the decorative finials. He made inarticulate noises, which sounded to Rodimus like pleas for more.

He was more than happy to oblige. He moaned as he shoved his glossa into Drift’s valve, his nasal ridge bumping against Drift’s anterior node as he fragged Drift with his glossa alone. He felt Drift’s calipers quiver.

“Roddy.” Drift whimpering his designation was the sexiest sound in the world. “Need… more.”

Rodimus moaned against Drift’s valve. He gave it several more long licks, savoring the taste, before he forced himself away. He dragged himself to his knees, Drift’s thighs splayed in front of him, hips squirming, his biolights blinking fitfully and his valve so puffy and wet.

It gave Rodimus an idea. He didn’t know if he could hold back if he spiked Drift again, but this… oh, Primus. This was even better.

He stroked his fingers around Drift’s array, thumbs teasing the swollen mesh. “Can I try something?” he asked, his spark throbbing in his chassis. His valve clenched, squeezing out lubricant.

Drift clutched at him, fingers curling around Rodimus’ wrists as though he were going to haul himself at Rodimus. “Anything,” he said, and lust-dimmed optics searched out Rodimus, finally finding him. “Just don’t stop.”

“I’m not going to, I promise.” Rodimus rubbed over Drift’s anterior node cluster again, loving the sweet sound of Drift whimpering for him. “And you’re gonna love this.”

Rodimus licked his lips and forced himself to focus. He kept one hand on Drift’s array, gently petting and stroking the swollen valve. He shifted his weight and moved to straddle Drift’s right thigh, hiking Drift’s left leg around his waist until their valves hovered close together.

Drift pawed at him, until he finally hooked his hands on Rodimus’ hands and grasped tightly. His backstrut arched, engine revving, his face flushing with visible heat. His optics flared.

“Primus, you’re gorgeous,” Rodimus said as he rolled his hips, teasing Drift’s valve with his own, letting the plump metalmesh of their arrays glide together in a gentle lower kiss.

Drift groaned. His grip tightened, enough that Rodimus heard his armor creak. Charge crackled out from beneath white armor in a pretty display of blue fire.

“Am not,” Drift said, vocalizer stuttering. His lips parted, drawing in several gasping vents. He arched his back again, rolling his hips up toward Rodimus. “You–”

“Shh. ‘M not talking about me right now.” Rodimus shook his head. He worked his intake and rocked forward again, until their valves were in firm contact, and he could feel the throb of Drift’s anterior node cluster against his own.

The heat of Drift’s array roared against his. Drift was so wet, so soft. The meeting of their valves was a hot, fiery kiss.

Rodimus shuddered. He curled forward, backstrut tingling, pleasure lighting up his sensornet like a lightning bolt. He held Drift’s thigh against his hips, and had one free hand left to stroke over Drift’s chestplate, tracing the seams of it, especially where it juttered in his desperation.

How much self-control he must have right now to not give in to the desires of his heat. His frame craved a sparking. Rodimus regretted he couldn’t give Drift one.

But there were other ways to play.

“Open up,” Rodimus murmured, barely above a whisper as he kept rolling his hips, kept slipping and sliding his valve against Drift’s, the rasp of soaked protomesh sending wave after wave of pleasure through his frame.

Drift’s optics flickered. “What?”

Rodimus tapped his chestplate. “Open up. I mean, if you want to.” He briefly gnawed on his bottom lip. “You don’t have to but…”

The soft click of a lock disengaging overrode Rodimus’ words. Armor shifted under Rodimus’ hand, sliding aside and tucking away, until the pale light of Drift’s spark peeked through a small gap in his plating. Not enough to allow for a full merge, but enough for Rodimus to appreciate it.

Drift’s field pushed against his, hot and open, desperate and craving. There was tentative apprehension there, too, as if he was asking for Rodimus not to hurt him.

He wouldn’t dare.

“Beautiful,” Rodimus said before he let his free hand dip into the seam, fingers carefully caressing delicate components usually protected by Drift’s armor.

The response was electric.

Drift’s back arched, his ventilations emerging in a sharp burst. He visibly shuddered, a whimper eking out of his vocalizer. His hands gripped Rodimus’ thighs, tugging him as close as possible, their valves fully notched together. Rodimus swore he felt Drift’s sparkbeat through the throbbing of his anterior node cluster.

Rodimus’ own chestplates jittered. He ground his denta and forced them to remain closed, no matter how pretty and inviting Drift’s spark was. No matter how much Drift’s field spoke of yearning, and how wet and yummy his valve felt.

No hatchlings on this quest.

Rodimus ex-vented orally and rolled his hips harder. Every time their anterior nodes touched, static leapt between them, sending wave after wave of heat through his array. Drift’s hands on his thighs were like iron bars, squeezing in arrhythmic bursts, his engine making little whining noises.

Rodimus’ spark throbbed. Drift was so beautiful. He could do this forever, could spend days in this berth, wrapped around Drift.

He wished this would last for more than a night.

Beneath him, Drift shivered. His spark flared, the flickers of light visible in the gap of his chestplate. The armor rattled, opening a touch further, and charge crawled out, nipping at Rodimus’ fingertips. His field flared, wrapping around Rodimus’, pulsing with desire and pleasure both.

Rodimus stroked his fingers down the inner seam of Drift’s chestplate. “Are you close?” he asked.

Drift’s helm jerked in a nod. His engine roared. He licked his lips. “You?”

Rodimus worked his intake again, ventilations coming in sharp, shuddering bursts. His valve contracted rapidly, squeezing down on nothing, the pleats of his rim trembling where they pressed against Drift’s.

“Yeah,” Rodimus murmured. He rolled his hips harder, grinding his valve against Drift’s, feeling their nodes kiss. “Want you to overload first though. Wanna watch you again.”

Drift gnawed on his bottom lip. Rodimus felt his thighs tremble, more charge crawling out from under his armor. “You’re… weird,” he gasped out, and his head pushed back into the berth, baring his intake.

Rodimus’ mouth watered. He wanted to kiss Drift so badly. But he wanted to see Drift overload first.

“Yeah, probably,” he agreed and slid his hand down Drift’s chestplate, over and over, his fingers dipping into the seam to tease at the outer corona of Drift’s spark. Heat throbbed through Rodimus’ lines, his array an inferno of need.

He held back. He meant it. He wanted Drift to come undone first. He wanted to savor this for as long as he could.

He rolled his hips harder, faster, thrusting his valve against Drift’s as though it were his spike, his fingers daring to dip deeper, to play with the secondary corona of Drift’s spark. The response was electric, Drift moaning and arching beneath him, hands scrabbling at Rodimus’ thighs, yanking on him.

His optics squeezed shut, his engine roared. He bucked up hard against Rodimus and then he shattered, whimpering as he overloaded, valve pulsing against Rodimus’ and his spark lighting up like fireworks, visible through the bare crack in his seams.

Primus.

Rodimus dropped Drift’s leg from around his waist and lurched forward, all but tossing himself over Drift’s chassis, his hands pressing into the berth to either side of Drift. His mouth fell over Drift’s sloppily, their lips colliding as did their chestplates. He groaned as he felt the heat of Drift’s spark wash against his chest, and his armor locks juttered again.

It took all Rodimus had not to let them open, even as he kissed Drift, sloppily tangling their glossas together. Drift’s arms wrapped around him, squeezing tight, Drift squirming beneath him, panting into the kiss.

Rodimus rocked against him, his valve scraping along the upper edge of Drift’s pelvic armor, his node rasping against a plating ridge. He felt the heat of Drift’s soaked valve against his upper thigh, and the heavy weight of Drift’s field fell over him.

Rodimus moaned, the pleasure starting at the base of his backstrut and radiating outward. He trembled as the overload throbbed over him, as it sent his armor plates to rattling and his spark surging in his chassis.

He panted against Drift’s lips, the awkward position making him slide off to the side, his forehead pressing to Drift’s shoulder. He trembled as the overload echoes shot through his lines. Drift embraced him still, frame shivering, heat pouring off of him.

Rodimus curled his arms against Drift’s side, hanging on as though he needed something to ground him, and perhaps he did.

The frantic beat of desire in Drift’s field calmed to a low grade simmer. It no longer felt as pressing and desperate as before.

Perhaps his heat had nearly reached its end.

Rodimus grasped for something to say. Effective words. A question. A promise. It all felt flat and pointless to him.

He settled for what he did best.

“Feel better?” Rodimus asked with a little half-grin as he lifted his head and looked into Drift’s optics.

Drift ex-vented a wavering burst. He chuckled, though it was tired. “Yeah,” he said. “Thanks for the help.”

“Anytime.” He meant it, too.

He laid his head back down. He listened to the sounds of Drift’s frame. He wondered if Drift would let him linger like this, just for a little while.

Drift’s arms wrapped around him, moving slow, tentative at first, until the weight of them seemed to hold Rodimus in place. His fingers trailed little patterns on Rodimus’ back plating. One teased at his spoiler joints.

Their frames cooled slowly. Quiet little ticks. Engines cycled down from heavy roars to soft purrs. The heat ebbed. Their lower halves became tacky. They’d need to visit the washracks.

Rodimus was reluctant to move. He feared if he broke the moment, he’d never get it back. He needed to say something. Anything.

He squirmed. “Drift, I–”

“Rodimus, um–”

They’d spoken at the same time. They shut up at the same time, too. Rodimus, despite himself, chuckled. He still couldn’t manage to lift his head.

“You should go first,” he said.

“You’re the captain,” Drift retorted.

“Not in the berth, I’m not!” Rodimus said, and he lifted his head, giving Drift a firm look. “Besides, um, you’re better with words.”

Drift’s finials twitched. “Not really.”

“Well, one of us has to be.” Rodimus rolled his optics and shifted position a little, though rubbing his valve against Drift’s pelvic array sent a low stirring of warmth through him. “I want to say something, but I don’t want to mess it up. I always talk and ruin things, and I don’t want that to happen here.”

He kept his gaze on Drift’s intake and chestplate. It was easier than looking into Drift’s optics. He knew he’d turn into even more of an idiot if he did that.

So he focused on disentangling their frames before the combined fluids got them stuck together, and shifting on the narrow berth, though he craved that close contact again. He just wanted to get wrapped up in Drift’s arms and kind of stay that way.

Drift’s hand wrapped around Rodimus’ arm, the one nearest to him, and gave it a gentle squeeze. Drift hadn’t really moved much; the heat probably took that from him. But there was something in the touch, the pleading way his field pushed at Rodimus’, that made Rodimus drag his gaze to his best friend’s.

Drift was smiling. Soft and gentle. “I like you,” he said, though his vocalizer crackled, and exhaustion ate into his field, he sounded sincere. “A lot. I never said anything because, well, you can probably guess.”

Drift winced. Rodimus did, too.

He sighed and rubbed the back of his head with his free hand. “I got a rep,” Rodimus said. “I know I do. It’s pretty well-earned, too. I just… I dunno.” He shrugged, his spoiler twitching. “Facing’s easy. It’s the rest that’s hard.”

“Different when the spark’s involved.”

“Yeah.” Rodimus nodded and gnawed on his bottom lip. “Scared me, you know? I didn’t know if I could handle that kind of rejection. Was easier not to deal with it.”

Drift nodded.

Rodimus squeezed the back of his neck and cycled a louder ventilation. “I mean, what I’m trying to say is, I like you, too. A lot. Like that.” His faceplate burned. His finials sparked with embarrassment.

It felt so stupid to say it aloud like that. Especially with transfluid and lubricant drying on his pelvic armor, like duh, he liked Drift. Wasn’t it obvious?

Drift squeezed his arm again. His smile widened, showing off those pointed denta of his. “The feeling is mutual,” he said.

Rodimus’ spark fluttered. His spoiler perked up. “So, uh, what does that mean? For us?” He licked his lips and scrubbed his free hand over his thigh. “Do you actually want to try something? You and me?”

Drift’s hand slid down his arm until he could grab Rodimus’ and tangle their fingers together. “Yeah. I mean, if you want to.”

“I do!” Rodimus all but surged forward, and then felt like an idiot for his enthusiasm. He coughed into his hand and stared at the berth above Drift’s head. “Though maybe we should talk when you’re not in heat. Your brain’s soaking in nanites right now, and for all I know, this is just the heat talking.”

“It’s not.”

Rodimus smiled softly. “I believe you. But I kinda want to be sure.” He shifted on the berth, laying down next to Drift and cuddling up to his side. “I’m pretty hot stuff, you know. I don’t want that to sway your real opinion of me.”

Drift burst into laughter as he abruptly rolled over and tucked himself against Rodimus. “You’re also ridiculous,” he said, words muffled as he’d shoved his face into Rodimus’ shoulder. “Good thing I like that about you.”

His spark thumped, warmth cascading through him. Rodimus pressed his forehead to Drift’s head and listened to him ventilate.

“I like a lot of things about you,” he murmured.

Drift tossed an arm over his chassis, resting a hand against Rodimus’ backstrut. “Tell me it the morning.” He squirmed. “In the washracks.”

Rodimus chuckled. “Deal.”

Silence fell between them, warm and comfortable. In many ways, it was probably for the best. Rodimus didn’t want to trip over his own words or say the wrong thing.

He wanted to keep this perfect moment like it was. Tomorrow, it might all be different, if the heat changed Drift’s mind.

So he’d cling onto today for as long as he could. He held it tight, nestled in his spark, even as he drifted into recharge next to his best friend.

~

The next morning dawned with a Crisis, which meant Rodimus had to rush out of Drift’s habsuite with a mumbled apology and hastily swiping at his groin with a damp washrag. He looked a mess and felt a mess, but he was Captain and that meant he couldn’t ignore a Crisis.

Even a mild one. For mild it was.

Honestly, Brainstorm setting parts of his lab on fire did not count as a crisis anymore. Still, Rodimus was obligated to show up and offer a Look of Disappoint (not nearly as effective as Optimus’). By the time they got that sorted – no, he was not building a weapon of mass destruction this time – it was time for Rodimus to start his actual shift.

Talking to Drift would have to wait.

And wait it did.

For four fragging days. Long enough that Ratchet cleared Drift for duty, claiming he was officially out of heat and now fitted with a shunt for future heats. Long enough that Drift had shifts of his own, and trying to get two members of command staff off shift at the same time to have a private moment was a damn near impossible feat.

Four days later found Rodimus dragging his tired aft to his own habsuite. He’d dimly thought about pinging Drift to have that conversation, but part of him was ready to keep putting it off. The fear had set back in, the fear that Drift wouldn’t want him now that the heat was over.

But he rounded the corner of the corridor and found Drift leaning against the wall by his door, arms folded over his chest, head down. Like he was meditating.

Rodimus blinked. “You’re waiting for me?”

Drift lifted his head and smiled. “Figured if I let you know I was here, you might run.”

Rodimus would never admit that he was tempted to do so now. “No, I wouldn’t,” he lied, feigning indignation. He keyed his code into the panel and gestured Drift to follow him. “Come on in. You feeling all right?”

“Cleared by Ratchet, so I must be good enough,” Drift said with a chuckle. “I have a shift in a few hours. Promised Hound I’d split with him.”

“Oh.” Rodimus hoped he didn’t sound too disappointed. This was it then, he supposed. He spun in a circle, trying to block Drift from seeing how messy his hab had gotten.

Or was all the time anyway.

Drift’s field reached out for his, warm and coaxing, and Rodimus was helpless to it. He reached back, indulging.

“Sorry,” Drift said. “We can do more next time.”

Rodimus cycled his optics. “Next time?”

Drift tilted his helm. He looked confused. “I meant what I said, Rodimus. It wasn’t just the heat.” He crossed his arms, shoulders hunching. “I mean, unless you changed your mind.”

“No, I didn’t. I just…” Rodimus broke off, ex-venting a frustrated noise. “Sorry. I’m not any good at this. I don’t know what I’m– never mind. I just… yeah.” He was babbling. Great.

He crossed the floor in two quick strides and reached for Drift, tentatively curling his hands around Drift’s face.

“I want to try this. With you,” Rodimus said earnestly. “And if you’d let me, I’d like to kiss you. Right now, I mean.”

Drift’s answer was to lean in and kiss him, not gently, but fiercely, as if in absolute claim. His lips fell over Rodimus’, his chest pressed to Rodimus’, and his hands grasped Rodimus’ hips. He hummed into the kiss, his field as much an embrace as his arms.

Rodimus’ spark thrummed with warmth.

All the answer he needed. This was real, as real as it got, and Primus, it was terrifying in all the best ways. Like losing the ground beneath his tires, and freefalling into a abyss, waiting for someone to swoop in and save him.

But Rodimus would do it. He would try.

Drift was worth it. And so was happiness.

Worth it all.

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