06: The Importance of Trust
“It’s not fair,” Bluestreak whined and tried not to pout, though he must have failed if Ratchet’s amused look was any indication. “Your pretty is so obedient and mine’s…”
“Currently back in your quarters chained up because he can’t behave?” Across from him, lounging like a king on his throne, Ratchet barked a laugh. “That’s your own fault, Blue. They only disobey if their owner isn’t firm enough.”
Bluestreak’s lips pressed together before he ex-vented a burst past them. “Or maybe he’s just an ornery little brat.”
Ratchet laughed again and leaned back, shifting his foot where it was braced against the table. “Well, that might be part of it.” A shiver visibly raced across Ratchet’s armor. “Mm. Bring him next time. Maybe I can teach him something. Ah!”
Ratchet startled and his optics shifted toward the mech between his legs. His optics narrowed, fingers gripping Prowl’s chevron and giving it a light tug.
“What did I say about your denta, love?” he asked, his tone loving, but something harsh behind it.
Prowl’s sensory panels flicked, first one and then the other. He didn’t say anything, and from Bluestreak’s position behind him, he couldn’t see Prowl’s expression. Which was a pity, because he bet it was a gorgeous sight, coated as it had to be in Ratchet’s lubricant.
He’d been hard at work for the better part of twenty minutes, lovingly licking and suckling on Ratchet’s valve, while his engine purred and Ratchet enjoyed. Honestly, Bluestreak was envious of Ratchet’s never-ending stamina, even if it had annoyed the pit out of him when he’d undergone Ratchet’s training.
Prowl’s fingers twitched where they were tangled together, clasped at the base of his backstrut, a form of self-bondage that Ratchet often utilized.
“Let the sub live or die by their own restraint,” he’d instructed with a devilish grin.
Ratchet’s grip on Prowl’s chevron tightened and Bluestreak winced. Such a sensory laden part and Ratchet held it as though it were a piece of unnecessary kibble.
“Well?” Ratchet prompted.
“No denta,” Prowl finally bit out, and there was a hint of indignation to his words.
Bluestreak was quick to cover his smirk behind his palm. That was the last time he’d praise Prowl’s behavior where Prowl could hear him. Perhaps Prowl had taken it as a challenge.
“And yet what did I feel?” Ratchet asked, though there’s no way Prowl could have nipped him hard enough to hurt. Prowl might have been playing with disobedience, but he’d never be half as contrary as Jazz.
Prowl’s sensory panels shivered. “I’m yours,” he said, by way of answer.
Ratchet tilted his head, but then his chastising expression softened, as did his grip. “Of course you are, love,” he said, stroking his fingers over Prowl’s chevron. “You misunderstood. I meant to supervise and offer feedback, not take Jazz under my own hand.”
Prowl made a low sound in his intake, his head dipping a little as did his sensory panels, flattening against his back in apology. “Forgive me, Ratchet. I presumed.”
“Yes, you did.” Ratchet sighed softly and stroked his palm over Prowl’s head, behind the jut of his chevron. “And that is partially my error as I was not clear. I am offering instruction and nothing less, though I can retract the offer…”
Prowl’s head dipped a bit more, until he was all but bowing before Ratchet. “No, sir. I…”
Bluestreak’s optics widened. Prowl rarely dropped back into the deferential terms for Ratchet. The both of them rarely relied upon the standard monikers, preferring more affectionate designations.
“We’ll discuss it later.” Ratchet’s hand slid back to Prowl’s chevron, fingers pinching the left-most crest and sliding up to the tip of it. “For now, there is the matter of you disobeying me, no matter what you may have presumed.”
Primus, but Ratchet was a master at this. Honestly, if Ratchet came back and rescinded his offer, Bluestreak would be fine with this. Just watching Ratchet and Prowl together was enough to learn him a thousand lessons.
Ratchet’s optics lifted back to Bluestreak, optical ridge arching as if asking ‘do you see what I mean?’
Bluestreak jerked his chin in a nod. Yeah, he was starting to see. Though, to be fair, Jazz had always been a misbehaving little sneak. A year or so in Bluestreak’s berth and under his thumb wasn’t going to change that.
“On top of that, our guest is going to leave disappointed,” Ratchet continued, his tone full of disapproval now, even as he clucked his glossa and released of Prowl’s chevron.
Ratchet fully straightened, planting his feet on the floor and rising to his full height, not at all ashamed of the lubricants dripping down his thighs, or his bared equipment.
“I’m sorry, Bluestreak. It appears this one is in need of some re-training of his own,” Ratchet said, the tips of his fingers resting on the crown of Prowl’s head.
Prowl whined deep in his intake, his hands tightening around each other. He leaned forward a bare fraction, and the quiet noise of a glossa lapping up dribbles of lubricant filled the space. Not that Ratchet seemed to notice.
“Perhaps another time?” Ratchet suggested.
Bluestreak pushed to his own feet and made a show of stretching as nonchalant as possible. He, after all, knew how to play this game. “For sure. Just let me know when you’re free and I’m free and let me know about that offer for instruction, too. Primus knows I could use some advice from the Master of Masters.”
Ratchet barked a laugh. “Master of Masters, hmm? I might have to borrow that.” He shifted his weight, tilting his leg toward Prowl, and Prowl obeyed, moving to lick the inside of Ratchet’s other thigh.
Bluestreak’s engine purred, lust drizzling throughout his internals. Thank Primus he’d left his own pretty back in his hab-suite. He looked forward to having someone to handle this charge for him.
“It’s yours,” he said with a playful bow and wiggle of his sensory panels. He offered Ratchet a devilish salute. “Thanks for the invite.”
Ratchet, however, had already shifted his attention back to Prowl, and Bluestreak knew better than to address Prowl right now. He was fully focused – or supposed to be – on showing his guilt and apology to Ratchet. As it had been his fault the game was ended, the guest did not even need to acknowledge him.
It was almost a shame. Bluestreak did so enjoy watching Ratchet punish Prowl. The medic was very, very creative. Devious, too. However, given the nature of what had startled Prowl right out of his assigned task, Bluestreak did not linger.
He suspected the punishment here would be less physical and sensual, and more of the hardest thing for Prowl, sitting down and having a discussion of the spark. He and Ratchet had been together a long, long time, but Prowl still found it hard to open himself like that. He probably always would, which was one reason he thrived under Ratchet’s dominance.
Ratchet’s rules, his expectations, that made it easy for Prowl. It gave him guidelines, structures, and when he behaved, performed well, it was a reflection of his own feelings and emotions. Prowl showed Ratchet how much he loved the medic, with every bowed head, bared intake, or bound limbs.
Trust and love were one and the same, to him.
In that, he and Jazz were a lot alike.
Bluestreak paused outside of Ratchet’s door as the realization poured over him, fast enough to make his engine stutter noisily.
Was that where he was going wrong? Had he not fully earned Jazz’s trust? Was that why Jazz misbehaved, acted out, even when it wasn’t part of the game? Was he still holding a part of himself back, wary of putting his spark into Bluestreak’s hands?
Perhaps Bluestreak was going about this all wrong. He forced his feet back into motion, turning toward his tiny, private habsuite, where he’d left Jazz.
He and Jazz had dove right into the games from the start, with a very eager Jazz all but hungry for it, begging for the sweet emptiness in his processor that came from handing over his control. But perhaps he hadn’t acquired full surrender yet, and his misbehavior was a way of telling Bluestreak that it wasn’t working.
He should take a step back, erase the board, and start from the beginning. As if they had just met and were learning one another. Leave the toys and the punishments out of it, and work solely on building and strengthening trust.
Bluestreak keyed his code into the lock and stepped into the room quickly, before the random passerby could look in and get a glimpse of Jazz. This section of the Ark was usually deserted but all it took was a moment of inattention for the gossip to spread like wildfire.
Autobots loved to gossip.
“Right where I left you,” Bluestreak murmured as the lights surged to sixty percent power, when he’d left them on a dim ten. Which was actually for Jazz’s comfort. He flourished best in the shadows. It was the bright lights which unnerved him.
Currently, Jazz knelt on the floor, a small puddle beneath his knees where lubricant had seeped out from his closed panels. His wrists were cuffed behind his back – self-bondage did not work well with Jazz at this point, too disobedient. Though he could get himself free of the cuffs in a matter of moments. Bluestreak was well aware of this.
Jazz’s frame quivered, little shudders running across his armor in bursts. The room was drenched with the scent of arousal, and Jazz’s field was blazing hot when it brushed over Bluestreak’s.
As far as Bluestreak could tell, however, he hadn’t moved. And he hadn’t overloaded. Unless Jazz had some Special Ops trick that helped him disguise the physical evidence of an overload.
Jazz looked up at Bluestreak’s words, his visor hazy. “Welcome back, Master,” he rasped and an urgent whine rose in his engine. “Early.”
“Yes. Someone has been taking lessons in behavior from you apparently,” Bluestreak said as he moved to stand in front of Jazz, nudging one foot between Jazz’s knees, until he felt the damp ex-vents against his upper thighs. “Did you overload?”
“No, sir.” Jazz shuddered again, his vents roaring.
“Are you close?”
That whine eeked out of Jazz’s intake this time. “Yes, sir.”
“Look at me then.”
Jazz tilted his head up and back and Bluestreak shivered as the weight of his lust-filled gaze fell on Bluestreak. Need clawed in Jazz’s field, volcanic and desperate. His bumper nudged against Bluestreak’s leg.
“We will talk,” Bluestreak said as he reached down, the tips of his fingers brushing around the edges of Jazz’s visor. “I owe you an apology, and you owe me an honest answer.”
Jazz’s shaking increased in earnest, and there it was, a treble of fear in his visor, and a small shiver of it in his field. Emotions, Bluestreak reflected, were a far worse fight than any punishment.
“Shh.” Bluestreak stroked the jut of Jazz’s sensory horn between two fingers, and felt the crackle of charge with it. “Overload for me, pet. And then we can talk.”
Jazz keened and his forehead tipped forward, pressed to Bluestreak’s thigh. He shuddered violently, engine roaring, as he overloaded then and there, more lubricant spilling down between his knees. The quiet vibrations of the toy lodged in his valve abruptly ceased – triggered, as it was meant to be, by the charge of Jazz’s overload. More proof that he’d not disobeyed Bluestreak for once.
Bluestreak hummed soothing sounds, stroking Jazz through the echoes of his overload, until Jazz abruptly sagged against him. Only then did Bluestreak kneel to unlock the cuffs, remove the toys from Jazz’s array, and set to cleaning up his pretty. All while Jazz panted and radiated heat and leaned against him, as if stripped of all energy.
His field clung to Bluestreak’s, humid and sticky, as if in dread of the conversation to come. Bluestreak murmured reassurance, his own processor babbling at him a mile a minute.
He wanted so desperately for this to work, and communication, he knew, was key.
So it was time both of them stopped letting their frames do all the talking, and opened their mouths and activated their vocalizers.