"What do you think is behind the. . ?" Starscream subtly gestured behind him.
Soundwave seemed to take no notice of the comment, or was to engrossed in his work to care.
Knockout eyed the third in command nervously. "Why do you ask?"
"I wanted to know your thoughts on the matter. Rumors have been running wild around the barracks lately. Stupid drones can't keep their mouthplates shut when they need to." Starscream said with a strange sort of dramatic flair.
Clearly he wanted this to be public.
"So will you answer or not?" Starscream smiled.
"I. ." Knockout paused, thinking over his word choice carefully.
"What do you think is under there?"
"I don't think there's anything left." He whispered.
Starscream raised an eyebrow. "What?"
Knockout turned around and quickly left the bridge, the doors closing silently behind him. If Starscream had tried to follow him, he took no mind.
He thought about what he had said. It was an odd thing to say, really. Normally he wasn't that observant, and definitely not that thoughtful. It had slipped out of his mouth.
It wasn't hard not to come to that conclusion. Even the dumbest of mechs could see just how unusual Soundwave was.
He didn't interact with anyone. Except for accepting the occasional command from Megatron, he tried his hardest to seemingly ignore the rest of the crew. He didn't even speak, for crying out loud. Not even to Megatron.
Knockout had definitely met other quiet mechs. They weren't that uncommon. Most of them didn't talk a lot. A lot of them didn't show much emotion, either. But physically covering your face with a visor was a new level of "quiet". It was more. . secretive.
Everything about Soundwave just oozed "secrecy". The visor, for one, was a major sign. But Knockout knew something that most people wouldn't; Soundwave had no medical file. Every person on board the Nemesis was required to have a file. It contained all the things required for a medic to properly treat them in the (no matter how unlikely) case that they were injured. Soundwave didn't, and never had, such a file.
Soundwave never got out much, but that doesn't mean he was just excused from mandatory medical information!
And everyone needs to interact socially with another living being some time, for the sake of sanity. Yet Soundwave seemed to be just fine.
Or was he?
All these signs pointed to a very broken mech underneath that visor.
Had he been different in the past? Did he ever have days of blinding glory, before the war tore his world apart? Did he ever openly call Megatron his leader, or even, a friend?
Did Soundwave, at some point, ever break? Was there anything left of the mech that one was?
There was no wonder that many of the rumors flying around the Vehicon barracks were about Soundwave. He may have intended to blend in, but being so mysterious practically painted a bright neon sign on his visor screaming "Look at me! I'm an enigma!"
Almost like a riddle, waiting to be solved-
"Oof! Watch where you're going!" Knockout scolded the Vehicon who had bumped shoulders with him.
The Vehicon gave him a quick stare before running past him.
"Where are you going?" He called out after them, but they had disappeared.
Knockout looked around. He had been walking aimlessly through the halls for a while now. They all looked the same, and even though he had been on this ship for almost two months though, he was still getting lost in its many corridors.
Normally there were Vehicons constantly patrolling these halls. And the lighting wasn't normally this dim. .
"Hey! Is this some sort of joke?" He called out, his voice ringing in the emptiness.
His doors twitched. He was being followed.
He spun around.
From the darkness, the sudden darkness that hung like mist around his head, he could pick out the shine of a black visor.
Soundwave approached slowly. Thoughtfully. Looking over every inch of him with a harsh stare.
"W-What do you want?" Knockout asked, and then cursed at himself for asking such a stupid question.
The visored mech stepped closer, cutting through the darkness.
"- anything left."
It was Knockout's voice, but he didn't say it.
"I-I. ." Knockout could not reply.
Soundwave leaned in, his visor almost touching Knockout's face.
The sound of cut audio fizzed quietly.
"Don't. Question. Me."
Soundwave stepped back, and walked off down the hall. The lights slowly flickered back to life.
Knockout sank to the floor, shaking.