Welp, this is what happens when you go away and don't sign back in for a good long while, you miss a lot of things happening here, lol.
One being that the March story contest was subsequently cancelled.
While I'm rather saddened the contest is over, I still have a story I made for the purpose, coming in at just under 800 words excluding title/name/synopsis.
That said, I'd like to share it at least and see if the idea had was of any merit...
By Jasmine Smith
Synopsis: Ironfist made a copy...
It was over. Finished.
One single slug, one satisfying metal plink as it dropped onto the table and Ironfist's body swayed a moment longer before collapsing underneath him as his joints plead no more.
"One copy, complete."
Ironfist looked at the data slug. And then to its incriminating identical twin.
The white Autobrand upon both stared back at him as if accusing him for it all.
Rotorstorm, Twin Twist and Top Spin, Pyro. All dead.
The rate of survival for Wreckers was 38 to 42 percent, four out of ten.
Ten Autobots landed on Garrus 9; four came back in caskets; and the statistical deities still sat waiting to be appeased; Springer was hooked up to a life support comprised of more computer banks than those required to man the engines.
And then there was Ironfist. He wasn't a survivor, dead before he had even landed on Garrus 9, he felt around the crack in his helmet and just imagined the crawling bullet worming its way to his core.
Maybe knowing he was going to die loaned him a faux invulnerability, that Death wouldn't allow him a way out by dying by anything other than pure, horrible irony.
But he had found it now: a way to cheat Death.
The idea only walked in on him when he had finished the first data slug.
Perceptor's Selective Data Scanner was built to comb through Ironfist's brain module, picking out what was Aequitas and what was Ironfist, a quick button click and download, presto. One pocket sized Aequitas.
Ironfist had expected it to be Perceptor, come to check the data feed that he had installed hadn't corrupted; or to find Magnus staring into his optics as if to find some scrap of data that Ironfist had missed mid-transfer still in his cortex.
What he didn't expect was to peer over the desk and see Verity there, "Hey, Iron Man."
Not that her appearance was unwelcomed, Verity certainly had an appetite for his tales; about Cybertron; about the Wreckers; about him.
Verity always said Techies like them needed to stick together, so he was more than happy to share his work or show her the progress on Datalog 332: So of course he showed her the data slug.
And that was when she said the magic words.
"Did you make sure to backup your data?"
Immediately after she left he went to work. Digits danced over keypads and consoles as scenarios and diagnostics flashed over multiple screens.
What if he inverted the program? Instead of Aequitas, he would have a complete copy of himself, his personality, his memories, everything that was Fisitron and the Wreckers.
A backup copy. A backup Ironfist.
Everything he needed, all in one single memory stick.
Why hadn't he considered it before?
Because it was terrifying, amoral and outrageous? No. Ironfist flirted with those words daily as a weapons designer.
More likely because it was so simple that it bordered between ingenuity and insanity.
He could wax philosophical later, for now he just needed to figure out how to hide it until he worked out the details.
But then as he went to touch the incriminating duplicate of himself, It happened.
It began with a pulse, the same as always, an echoed cry that called Its arrival.
Before Ironfist could do anything, electricity shorted and circuits seized as his limbs were no longer his own, as his body lashed out in animatronic throes.
It was happening, he could feel the involuntary shutdown oncoming as his optics seemed to telescope and everything became tunnelled and far away.
But what now? Would he awaken like all those times before?
Or would this finally be it? When the tenacious bullet would strike his neural cluster and he would fall asleep, and a new Ironfist would wake up not remembering anything after the transfer?
The feedback was enormous, his casing threatened to split under the pressure that fed through his head as he writhed and his body arched out of the seat by a misconstrued signal to his cortex.
Even while his vocal processors kept releasing a scream of static he couldn't help laughing to himself somewhere in his head; that somehow he'd won, that somehow Ironfist knew everything would be okay.
Finally Ironfist fell, like a car crash in slow motion his body tumbled to the floor and pulled half his desk with it. As optics began to flicker, as pain coursed through him one last time, he stared blankly at all of his life's work strewn before him.
In the middle of it all, sat two identical data slugs staring back at him.
And as the lights finally went out, a curious last thought went through Ironfist's head.
It would be so easy to get the two mixed up...