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The Autobots prepare to evacuate, while Megatron begins his master plan.
In the fortress of Kolkular, Megatron recaps how the now-executed Xeon was bribed into ignoring the Decepticons' development of their underground movement. However, Starscream reviews footage of Laserbeak's last aerial recon, which shows that the Autobots are preparing to abandon the planet. Megatron is unconcerned, saying that while Optimus Prime has impressed him with ordering an evacuation, they aren't going anywhere.
While Starscream is sent on a mission of only superficial importance, Megatron and Soundwave drill beneath Cybertron. In the caverns below, the Constructicon refit a planetary turbine to pump plasma upwards out of Cybertron.
Prowl and Optimus stand in the Tower of Pion, discussing how the general public feels about Optimus' idea. When the usually-calculating Prowl tries to explain how some decisions must be made with the spark/heart, their meeting is disturbed. An inferno of plasma incinerates the Forum of Enlightenment. From another part of Cybertron, Grimlock sees the destruction in the distance, but rather than run to help rescue survivors, he moves deeper into Decepticon territory.
Optimus and a team of Autobots explore the ruins of the immolated area, unable to find a single survivor. With memory of Umbra's message, Prime suspects Megatron devastated the city as a mere way of calling out the new Autobot leader. He breaks off from his group to explore the deeper depths of the area on his own—even aware the idea is madness. Proving him correct, the Autobot leader is blasted around by the Insecticons.
Meanwhile, at the Decagon, the Autobots are debating the wisdom of Prime going off by himself, when Shockwave and an army of Decepticons attack!
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
"Laserbeak, replay aerial recon file V6.2-- Perhaps our suddenly garrulous leader was too busy pontificating to grasp its significance."
- Continuity error: Trypticon is visible on one of Megatron's circular monitors, yet wouldn't be created until the Dark Ages.
Items of note
- "FIRRIB" is visible on one of the platforms as the Autobots load cargo onto the Ark.
- The container Brawn's holding has the Japanese text "Dinosaur Robo", which was the name for the Diaclone figures which would eventually become the Dinobots.
- The drill that Megatron and Soundwave use to get to the underground chamber has a passing similarity to the spire the Decepticons used to launch from their underwater base in the original cartoon—only, of course, upside down.
- Ravage is drawn to transform into a rounded cassette like Laserbeak.
- Cameos: Microchange Lock guy, Cy-Kill (miscolored), Microchange Watch Robo, Pre-Eggbot, Diaclone Marlboro Wheeljack, Diaclone Helicoptor-Jet Triple Changer (all in flashback to the arena); Blitzwing and Trypticon on monitor screens, Grapple, Powerglide, Outback, Hoist, Huffer (helping the Autobots load); Mixmaster (with other Constructicons); Diaclone's Multiforce 14 (after the blast); Springer (flying above Prime); Brawl, Astrotrain, Octane, Blast Off (Shockwave's troops)
- Megatron pontificating with Ravage while Starscream schemes; art by Don Figueroa and Talent Pun.