Mirage, being decidedly unenthusiastic about this entire project, has taken his time in preparing an appropriate training area in which to beat his head into the ground attempt to teach the hulking beasts known as the Dinobots stealth moves.
"Grimlock. Stealth. Two words which are as diametrically opposed as Decepticon and Autobot," Mirage snorts as he puts the finishing touches on his last...training aide. "And that other one is surely about as intelligent, seeing as they come from the same reality. At least my own was smarter than a maintenance-bot."
He stands and wipes a hand over his brow, the smiles...rather nastily, actually. The area looks rather unassuming: a semi-cleared out area of forest with some deadfalls arranged to provide cover, a freshly tilled up stretch of soil, stream running through one end, and several stones and boulders placed strategically about. But looks can be deceiving.
He taps his foot impatiently. Where are those lumbering oafs? Nevermind that he only just called them on the radio a half hour ago.
And no, he didn't talk to Botanica first before tearing things up. Why do you ask?
Slag is generally an angry Autobot. Which makes the times he isn't angry somewhat worrisome.
Especially when he is walking over, in triceratops mode, to his leader and the random person who called them both, his armor glowing just that little bit from his recent spout of burning something that had the bad luck to get in his way. Possibly a wall.
"Me Slag want see this dumb thing happen. It stupid!" he says, a malevolent glint in his optics.
"So I can see," Mirage drawls, meeting Grimlock's glare with a grimace of his own. "And you," Mirage spins on his heel to address Slag, "will be a fully participatory member of this little exercise, if I have to break my hand beating you over the head to make you do it. I'll not give Xaaron any reason to say I did not do this as directed. Primus knows what he'd come up with as an alternative. Teaching Firebolt proper language usage or some such. Ugh."
Mirage stalks over to large boulder. It has a flat top, and he climbs up on top of it, putting him just a bit taller than the Dinobots in bot mode. "Now...whatever mode you think you would use most when attempting sneak about, I don't care which one right now." He points at a lightning-struck pine on the other side of the course, a decent enough walk in either mode. "I need to see what your gaits are like naturally, how hard you hit the ground and how much you mark it up. Keep to the path marked by stones. Walk over there and back. Oh, and do try not to cross over each other's tracks, if you will."
Now, Mirage has just given Dinobots marching orders. Given his observation of the pair, he does not expect them to do things quite as directed.
OOC: Should either Slag or Grimlock decide not to stick to the path as directed, they have the option of triggering a trap or two, including, but not limited to: a hidden pit, a tripwire deadfall, a puddle of quicksand (not enough to drag a Dino under-just get a foot stuck) or what ever else you happen to think of. Try not to shoot the wad in one go, though, 'kay?
Grimlock transforms to robot mode, peering at Mirage, and then at Slag.
//Me Grimlock say you take part, too. We give snob-bot here hard time. Snob bot think us Dinobots just hulking idiots. And him have to do this 'cause him got in trouble. We start off normal, though. Put him in...uh...how phrase go? False sense of something. Make him think him actually can do this.//
If one is watching Grimlock's face, one might see a mischievous glint in his optic band. However, he makes no vocal reply to Mirage, and starts walking to said path, and once he gets to the tree, he stops to wait for Slag.
Slag blinks. What he thought would happen is not happening. He was hoping for fire, or at least a fight!
//Me say to give him hard time we just beat him up! You Grimlock think too hard about plan... But me go with it for now// he responds, before transforming and heading over to Grimlock, walking along the path with all of the grace and stealth of a particularly heavy tank.
At the end of the path, he turns to face Mirage, arms folded over his chest in a display of annoyance and boredom.
"Hmph" Mirage frowns, and only partly because of the heaviness of the Dinobots' walk. They followed his orders entirely too easily, and Mirage is intelligent enough to be wary. He is already resigned to the fact that he will likely be in pain- mental and physical- by the end of this encounter, but that does not mean he will fall easily.
He leaps gracefully down from his perch, landing lightly and with a minimum of scuffing. He makes his way to the start of the path, and then, using the marking stones as steppers, walks it's length, examining the two sets of tracks. Once he almost reaches the Dinobots, Mirage crouches down, feeling out one of...Grimlock's tracks, judging by the shape and depth.
"On Cybertron, a gait and step is perhaps not so large an issue as on an organic planet. At least back home, one would be looking for different visual clues, you see," he starts, glancing up at the pair. "But here even one as small as Holi can be easily noticed, because of the fragility of the ground underfoot. You two may be frontliners, but that does not mean you need to walk heavy enough to crush."
Mirage slips around the tree and emerges with an improvised rake. He starts to regrade a short part of the path. "It is interesting, you see. Technically, there are no Dinobots in my reality. My Grimlock's tracks are quite different from yours, and you," he points at Slag, "Do not even exist." Yet, but Mirage doesn't know that.
"Grimlock, walk back toward me, but this time as if you were going to sneak up on someone. Try to be as stealthy as you can." The tone of Mirage's voice indicates he does not expect to be impressed
"Me Grimlock no like your reality if me no have other Dinobots around" he answers, crossing his arms.
Then comes the order, and Grimlock hunches slightly, arms out to the side, walking as if he was in an old cartoon, where sneaking was done flamboyantly.
However, his steps are just as heavy, if not moreso, as there is more emphasis being placed on them. Once he gets even with Mirage, he sloooooooowly turns toward him, and half-lunges in his face. "BOOGA BOOGA BOOGA! ME GRIMLOCK SNEAKED UP ON YOU!"
Mirage crosses his arms over his chest and glowers at the Dinobot hulking before him. "No. You most certainly did not." The spy is too annoyed and too proud to let himself be startled in such a manner. Perhaps if Grimlock had not been so showy about it, he might have gotten a better reaction.
Well, Mirage did take a quick step back when Grimlock lunged. But that's due to personal space issues, of course. Not fear. Never fear.
"You did not adjust your gait at all! All you did was play at it. How am I supposed to do this if you refuse to take it seriously!?!" He presses a hand to his temple, "Primus, I already have a headache."
"Look. I don't want to be here. You two don't want to be here. But we have no choice. Can you both please attempt to concentrate and learn something, so that Xaaron will get off all our backs?"
//Me Grimlock not sure of full of plan yet, other than annoy snob-bot. Me Grimlock make it up as me go along.//
Well, Grimlock likes to be showy, so this is his own fault.
"Me Grimlock did so try to sneak! Me told you, Dinobots no need stupid sneaky training when we not made for it!" He straightens up, looking down at Mirage. "If Xaaron want sneaky big bots so bad, why Omega Supreme not here?! Me Grimlock like to see you teach him to be sneaky!"
"You have just reiterated my argument exactly," Mirage drawls, "You aren't made for it; you don't have the build or mentality for it. But apparently that does not matter."
"And Omega is currently being more stealthy than you could ever dream of being, otherwise we'd already have the Decepticons up our afts. Or have you forgotten how he has hidden himself?" Mirage's smile takes on a nasty edge. "It can not be comfortable for him, what with the water and assorted organic muck getting in all those crevasses, but he still does what needs doing. More than I can say of some."
The look of disdain on Mirage's face is quite clear, as is who that disdain is leveled toward. He waves a hand at Slag, "Can you do any better than your Commander, here? Try to leave as little track on the path as possible."
Well, that backfired right in Grimlock's face. Hiding in a lake is not what Grimlock meant, but that doesn't matter. Mirage would more than likely turn that on its head even quicker than the first attempt.
Oh, that smile. That pompous, arrogant smile. That really grinds Grimlock's gears. "...me Grimlock not put up with your scrap!" he snaps, lashing out and grabbing Mirage's arm, turning in one fluid motion, hoisting Mirage overhead and throwing him overhead, behind him and over into an empty area of the field.
"Dinobots no need to learn stupid hiding tricks! Hiding for cowards anyway!" he snarls, turning to watch the landing... ---------- OOC: Throwing of Mirage done with player permission.
First thing Tracks notices as he rolls into the clearing is a blurr of white and blue launching through the air from Grimlock's arms--a very familiar shade of white and blue. With a rev of his engines, Tracks hurtles into the field, transforming into robot mode just in time to catch Mirage neatly in his arms. Oh goodness, that's going to scuff and dent a bit.
"You really must restrain yourself, Mirage. As much as I enjoy the attention, I can't have you throwing yourself into my arms all the time." Tracks glances down at the spy with a winning smile and a wink. "So, what sort of little gathering have I stumbled into?" A turn to Grimlock and Slag. "You know it's quite rude to throw your fellow bots around."
No, Tracks has not set Mirage down quite yet. Mirage doesn't mind the damsel-in-distress hold, does he?
OOC: Mirage catch and holding done with character permission.