We have moved back to the lair; my sons have gained new scars from their encounter with the foot a few nights ago. Since said encounter the oldest has been left feeling miserable, so I have given him the responsibility of training his brothers. every day he trains harder than the last, as he pushes his brothers and himself passed their limit until they are on the verge of passing out in fatigue. His failure has affected him deeply, while I am proud of him for taking his position with such determination, his fear of failing his brothers weighs heavily on his heart. I tried to confront him but I fear my advice falls on deaf ears, he must deal with his current situation on his own and defeat his own daemons.
Splinter watched on silently as his sons practice their katas and sparring. "Donatello attack me" Leo ordered.
"but Leo I'm tired, we've been training all day" Donnie groaned, dark circles under his eyes.
"the enemy won't let you take a break, why should I?" he stated
"fine whatever!" he lunged out at him bō ready, he swung his staff but Leo dodged easily and knocked Donnie to the ground.
"that was sloppy Donatello"
"I told you I was tired"
"Michelangelo and Raphael, you will be sparring now." Leo commanded as he turned to what them.
"whatever, you're going down knucklehead!" Raph stated.
"don't be so sure Raph, I'm feeling lucky!" he said with a cheery grin.
"Hajime!" Leo shouted and the two flew off at each other, Raphael strikes quickly but his youngest brother is quicker dodging his attacks smoothly. Raph keeps charging trying to hit the freckled turtle but he keeps ducking and weaving out of the way.
"Can't touch this (oh-oh oh oh oh-oh-oh) Can't touch this (oh-oh oh oh oh-oh-oh)" Michelangelo chants as he avoids his brother's swings.
"shut up mike!" he growls in frustration as he charges forward but his brother flips over him and tackles him from behind, the two fell to the ground, Mikey quickly gets up but Raphael stays on the floor.
"yeah in your f-a-c-e, face, Raph!" Mikey did a little victory dance, that really got on the red turtles nerves.
"Yame, well done Michelangelo" Leo responded as he smiled but his smile faulted when he saw Raphael.
I wasn't thinking clearly, anger consumed my thoughts, everyone in the room became irrelevant. My mind was focused on only two things the annoyance and a nearby pipe that can silence it, 'take out the threat' danced around in my head.
"Raph what are you doing!" Leo's shout snapped me out of my thoughts, and the realization dawned on me, I was about a second away from hitting my baby brother in the back of the head with a pipe. I drop the pipe and it lands with a loud clank on the floor, the sound echoes through the now silent lair, my brothers and father look at me in shock.
"I-I…" I stuttered, finding it difficult to put words to what I'm feeling, I just almost killed my brother, even thinking it makes me feel like I'm the worst person in the world.
"I-I'm s-sorry…" I whispered before running out the lair I can hear a chorus of "Raph wait" but I don't care, I've failed them, I've hurt them, I have to leave.
"should we go after him?" Mikey asked worriedly.
"no, he needs some time alone, my son, he has some personal battles that he needs to fight alone." Splinter stated as he stared sadly at the lair entrance.
I ran, no real destination in mind, my body brought me to some roof above an alley, the fresh air was nice but my thoughts seemed to play that scene on repeat, the question of what if I did strike him, staring me down making my blood run cold and my body weigh like a ton.
I was snapped out of my thoughts by some commotion below, seems that some dude in a hockey mask was beating down Purple dragons with a hockey stick. This guy seemed like a good distraction, so I started to watch him, his technique was sloppy, no real rhythm to his movements but he swung hard, his fighting style reminiscent of my own, more concerned with dealing the most damage instead of dodging or thinking out a strategy.
The more I watched the more I realized that the situation was escalating, the mysterious man seemed to be preparing for a fatal blow, was he insane?! I throw a Sai down catching the guys attention, as I land in front of him.
"be careful, you almost killed that guy" I growl.
"This doesn't concern you, weird turtle man" he spat, he turns around but the thugs have already run away. "aw, great! Look what you've done they're gotten away!" he shouted angrily.
"I'm sure they've learned their lesson" especially if you almost killed one.
"you don't get it, if you don't kill the criminals all they do is come back" It was like listening to my inner thoughts coming out of his mouth.
"maybe, but who made you jury and executioner?" It felt weird to disagree, I probably sound like Don right now.
"what do you know freak!" he called me a freak?! How dare him, why I ought'a, no I can't resort to violence, that's why I'm in this situation in the first place.
"more then you obviously"
"you wanna dance tough guy? Let's dance" he lunged out at me, got a lucky hit too, it would defiantly bruise tomorrow but I quickly got him into a slight chokehold.
"look, guy I don't want to fight" my hold on the man weakened.
"ha, could'a fooled me" he retorted and I let him go, the two of us didn't let down our guard, stuck in a stalemate waiting for the other to attack.
"ha, you and I seem to have stubbornness in common, what's your name kid?" the man asked, I swear he could read my mind.
"Raphael? What are you some kinda French painter or something? I'm Casey Jones" Casey held out a hand.
"Raphael was an Italian painter yer nutcase and at least I don't have a girl's name, Casey".
"so, what's yer deal Raph why did ya break up ma fight?" he asked as he sat down leaning his back on the building.
"I don't know, I've been taught my whole life not to kill and today I almost did, and I feel terrible about it so I guess I wanted to save you from the guilt?" I say sounding surprised at the words that were coming out of my mouth. I sit next to him.
"well thanks I guess" he sighs and stares out into the night sky. We sat there in silence for a while, how am I going to face my brothers, can I even go back to the lair? My thoughts were broken by Casey "hey ah, Raph… do you know how to treat a gun shot?" he asked as he turns his shoulder to me, blood seeping down his arm, I don't know how I missed that.
"you should really go to a hospital Casey, that looks bad"
"can't, do you know how expensive that is?"
"Yeah, but is it worth dying of blood loss over?"
"look, I just can't okay" I didn't know what to do with him, I can't just leave him here bleeding out, Donnie would be able to treat him but do I risk taking him to the lair?
"come on Casey, my brother is a doctor… well kind of" I guide him to a nearby manhole.
"ew, you live in a sewer?" he questions, I can tell he's starting to get dizzy as he leans on me.
"where else am I supposed to live genius, in case you haven't noticed I'm a giant talking turtle." I retort he simply nods, I slip my bandana over his eyes as a blindfold "nothing personal Case, just need to keep my home a secret"
"S'fine" he slurs, getting more light headed.
I burst into the lair, I think Casey might have passed out a tunnel or two ago. My brothers and father seemed to be waiting in anticipation for me.
"Raph!" my brothers shouted simultaneously.
"Raphael, who is this?" Splinter asked referring to unconscious man on my shoulder.
"I'm sorry to bring him here, sensei, but I just couldn't leave him, he's been shot and I was hoping Don could help."
"why didn't you drop him off at a hospital?" Leo asked in a demanding tone.
"he refused, if I left him he'd probably have died of blood loss, can you help him Don?" I asked my little brother sighed.
"sure, take him to my lab, I'll get the med-kit"
I laid him down on the cot in the lab before turning to Mike "hey Mikey, I'm really sorry about before, I-" Mikey cut me off with a hug I wasn't expecting.
"it's okay Raph, I'm not mad, just glad you're okay" he smiled "your bleeding too Raph!" he exclaimed, I was? I felt my head, I was on right where Casey hit me on head.
"who did that Raph? Was it the purple dragons? The foot?" Leo asked, he was such a mother hen.
"Relax fearless, Casey here, got a lucky shot at me"
"and you brought this man into our home?" Leo deadpanned
"we're cool now, don't worry 'bout it".
Casey woke up a half an hour later, staring at a much taller turtle. "woah, Raph you look different…"
"no Mr. Jones, I'm his brother, Donatello, Raphs over there." The turtle stated "now Mr. Jones how do you feel, are you dizzy? Experiencing any additional pain?"
"no, I'm fine, but can you not call me Mr. Jones, makes me feel old. Call me Casey"
"sure, now how did you get shot, Casey?" Donnie asked.
"I was fighting some purple dragons."
"why were you fighting them?"
"kind of personal, don't you think?"
"Sorry, just trying to piece the situation together."
"Mr. Jones, are you feeling well enough to walk?" Splinter asked.
"ah! How the hell did I miss the giant rat!" he screamed
"calm down, Mr. Jones I mean you no harm, I am Splinter and I'm the turtles father and teacher."
"your dad is a rat? How does that work? Can a rat and a turtle even, you know" he gave a very suggestive gesture with his hands. The turtles redden in embarrassment.
"adopted sons, Mr. Jones" Splinter responded flatly.
"oh, that makes more sense… wait none of this makes sense you're four giant talking turtles and a rat."
"perhaps an explanation is in order"
Later after the expiation
"So, it was a cool story and everything but why did you name them after painters?"
"I really like the renaissance period in art"
"makes sense, I guess"
"it is almost morning, Donatello could you take Casey Jones home?"
"of course, master Splinter" he as he bowed.
After the two left, Splinter turned to face the three remaining turtles "my sons, I need to speak with you." They all sat down. "Leonardo do you know why I let you take over your brothers training for a few days?"
"Because you were teaching me to be a better leader?"
"Yes, in a way, I was teaching you responsibility, putting you in charge of your brothers training in hopes that you would learn a very important lesson, during this time you over worked yourself and your brothers, a good leader knows his limits as well as those of his followers.
Let today be a reminder of what ignoring others needs can lead too and remember Leonardo, it is okay to make mistakes especially when your young, because making mistakes is how we learn. Leonardo, I also want to say that you are still a teenager, so don't let the responsibility of being leader always get in the way of fun, happiness makes a healthy mind. Your safety will always come first but health is important, overworking your self is bad for both your body and mind.
Michelangelo your lesson for today is to avoid gloating until you are sure the battle is won and to always be aware of your surroundings. Your enemies will always to gain the upper hand and you mustn't let them.
And Raphael, you must not let your anger consume you, a ninja must keep a level head, especially when sparring. Your anger can cause complications in battle like not being about to distinguish friend from foe. We will practice some calming techniques later. Lastly this is for all of you, please reframe from bring people into the lair, I fear that one day you will bring the wrong person into the lair, understand?"
In the foot clan lab.
Baxter Stockman's POV
It's been a tough week, I've been working on this lab with my new colleagues, analyzing the samples from the Testudines freaks. I can't make any sense of these samples, were these things recreated in a lab or something?
Rudolph Cobrato the Herpetologist I'm working with doesn't understand it either, these terrapins are like some sort of demonic crossbreed between human and turtle. After a week, we managed to isolate a mysterious chemical in their blood, something that is unlike any other chemical I've studied. After extracting the chemical and studying its properties, we can't figure out what it is, no parallel seems to exist almost like this chemical is alien.
My associates and I move on to animal testing, we bring in a rabbit for testing. The neuroscientist dr. Tyler Rockwell has nicknamed him Karl, so I'll be addressing him as such. After injecting Karl with the chemical not much happened with in the last 5 hours other than the brain scans showing he was in a descant amount of pain, comparable to that of a broken limb, his brain also seems to be expanding which is fascinating the chemical seems to cause pain and a slight increase of intelligence he also doesn't seem to move a lot, I will keep watching and record my findings.
Firstly, I'd like to thank Scrufftstarwarsfan for his review
"This has promise. A rewrite or two and this could be really good. The plot is ok but I think perhaps you should work on the dialogue, for instance, when Splinter is telling April of their backstory it feels really rushed and unnatural. The same when Shredder is recruiting Stockman. But like I said, if you finish it and then rewrite it and change what doesn't work and fill in the plotholes, this could be a really good story"
I found it very helpful, go check him out he has some pretty good stories!
Secondly, I have a guest review by someone called Colton Fox who wrote
"You should have a love interest for leatherhead and the turtles introduced later on in the story. You should also include a wolf mutant and alopex in this story."
Thank you Colthon for the suggestions, I do plan having some romance later on in the story but don't expect it to play that big of a part. I do have an idea of a OC I could ship with leatherhead. As for a wolf mutant, I was planning on adding Rahzar and Dreadmon later down the line. While I'm not that big of a fan of Alopex I wouldn't mind including her, I feel like Alopex and Umeko/ninjara could be like a duo serving under the foot clan.