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a/n: This one's both a prompt palooza fill and a tiny piece from the Event Horizon universe. Self-beta'ed. Please enjoy!

Title: In Perpetuum
Universe: TFP, Event Horizon 'verse
Characters: RatchetxSunstreaker
Rating: K+
Warnings: None
Description: Forever is a long time, beyond comprehension and measurement. (Takes place before Critical Mass but after Event Horizon)
For dellessa's palooza prompt of TFP RatchetxSunstreaker, infinity

Humans use the term forever so flippantly.

Promises are made with such a qualifier.

For all eternity. Until the end of time and a day beyond.

I love you always.

They toss it at each other. Forever and ever. And then split for petty grievances, or mistaken affections, or irreconcilable differences. It's easy, when that promise is only on paper. Easy to toss around forever when it's actually not forever.

But a bond doesn't have that luxury.

Forever is a long time. It is time beyond comprehension and measurement. It cannot be fathomed and therefore cannot be understood. It is both meaningless and meaningful.

It is a term that has lost its value simply because of overuse.

Not unlike love actually.

Humans live short lives, not even blinks in the history of the universe. Ratchet supposes that it's easy for them to toss out a forever. They have no real comprehension of how long that is.

To be fair, Cybertronians are mortal, too. Eventually, they die. They do not live until eternity. But they do function for a long time, thousands upon thousands of human lifetimes.

Cybertronians have the Well and the Allspark. Their physical bodies eventually decay and rust, falter and fail, but their sparks linger on.

Even those that had been bound to another.

Sideswipe had accused him of being afraid. And that is true in part, Ratchet reflects.

Forever is a long, long time.

For some, that is a comfort. Ratchet had been terrified of that prospect for reasons beyond counting.

It isn't that he had plans to one day walk away from Sunstreaker. It isn't that he wanted the option either.

It is love, in so much as Ratchet understands such a muddled concept.

Ratchet never imagined himself with anyone else. He did not fear exposing his spark to Sunstreaker, nor did he worry what he would find in his golden warrior.

But eternity is beyond measure and such a thought had paralyzed Ratchet.

Mechs change. For better and for worse and sometimes, hopes and dreams change, too. Expectations.

It is too easy, now, to say that he wants the rest of his life for Sunstreaker. Centuries upon centuries down the line, who is to say that either of them won't change their mind? That Sunstreaker won't tire of walking the fine line of Ratchet's temper?

No, it isn't even that. He hadn't feared Sunstreaker's conviction, but the strength of his own.

What if Ratchet's spark changes? What if the value of his own feelings are much lesser than he believed? What if he's the one who changes?

What if he's not worth the depth of Sunstreaker's spark?

These are the worries that plagued him. Forever is a long time, a time without measure. It is unto death and beyond, when bonded sparks seek each other out in the Allspark. When they stand before Primus, judged as one.

His fears never eased. He still worries that forever might bring something unexpected, but Ratchet stands by his decision. The prospect of losing Sunstreaker now far outweighed the worries of a nebulous future.

He does not regret his decision to bond. The steady thrum of Sunstreaker within him, less a constant connection and more an awareness, is something Ratchet will never regret.

Forever is a long time. And Ratchet has every second of it to rejoice in the choice he made. For better or worse.

Perhaps there is something to the human marriage vows after all.


a/n: Got a couple more prompt fills in the works. Still pushing through War Without End (Skywarp is being difficult) and I'm typing away at Nycthemeron, too. I've got that Bigbang fic to stop ignoring and One More Night continues to exceed it's oneshot expectations.

Feedback is welcome! :)


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