Author's Notes: Well, everybody, here we are... the final chapter of "Wishes Are Eternal".

Along with writing this chapter, I have gone back and edited the entire story! So, even if you've read this fanfic already, I highly encourage you to take another look at how things may have changed slightly...

Since this is the last chapter, I am also going to take this opportunity to write out a few credits and words of thanks.

Special Thanks:

SonicTeam/SEGA, for creating the game without which none of us would ever have known Shadow in the first place.

Nintendo, for creating the Game Cube, where I first became acquainted with Shadow.

KojiChao, for originally translating "The Truth About 50 Years Ago," without which this story would never have been written. This text can be found at:

http : / / garm . dyndns . org / kojichan / ps / truth . htm

(Simply take out the spaces when you visit the site. A link to the main website can be found on my homepage, also.)

"The Truth About 50 Years Ago" is a very intriguing piece of evidence as to whom Shadow might truly be...

And lastly,

Everybody who took the time to write a good review for this story. Thanks for all of your support! :D

(Update 5/4/05: Because of FanFiction . Net's announcement regarding song lyrics, I have removed the English song, "Make A Wish" from this chapter. However, I have decided to keep the translations of both "Hikaru Michi" and "Chiisaki Mono," and while I'm at it, I would like to claim both of my translations as my own. Please do not steal my translations, as they took quite a bit of work to do. Thank you!)

Now, for that question that I know some of you out there might be wondering... will there be a sequel?

I'll leave you with this; there has been a sub-story within this fanfiction which I have been itching to write. I don't know when, and I don't even know if I will... but if I do, you will find yourself with a continuation of this fanfic.

(Note 2/26/10: Six years later, it's safe to say that there will not be a sequel to this story. Sorry to everybody who was hoping for one, XD However, I would like to say that I don't believe that I am done entirely with this story, and that there are many places where I still think it could have gone... So, please look forward to something from me in the future. :) )

And finally, I present to you the final chapter of "Wishes Are Eternal".






"Fifty years ago, the famed Space Colony ARK, built by the late renowned scientist Professor Gerald Robotnik, was shut down under the premise that an unfortunate accident had occurred. This accident supposedly killed most of those working on the current experiment, code-named "Project Shadow," and Prof. Robotnik was taken into the custody of the military organization, the Guardian Units of (the) Nation, also known as G.U.N. The prototype of the Ultimate Life, the Biolizard, was sealed away within the core of the space colony, and a secondary prototype was captured and frozen within G.U.N.'s base on what was formerly known as Prison Island. Prof. Gerald was later executed.

"Under further investigation, though, it has been shown that G.U.N. was actually the originator of the "accident" on ARK, as was written in a previous report (see "The Truth About 50 Years Ago," report written on Project Shadow). Now, there is evidence to show that G.U.N. not only took the captured Project Shadow for itself, but also attempted to create more of its kind, under the experiment code-named, Project Shadow02.

"Project Shadow02 originally began approximately twenty years ago, with the forced assistance of Professor Tamine Kagaku, who had been a member of Robotnik's original team. However, several years into the project, Kagaku was expelled from G.U.N. for uncertain reasons, possibly insubordination. Despite this, research did not halt, and five years after the project began, a prototype of the "Second Ultimate Life" was created, modeled after the hedgehog form of the original Project Shadow.

"Project Shadow02 was a continuation of Robotnik's "immortality studies," using the energy of the seven enigmatic Chaos Emeralds. These Emeralds were slowly gathered together, several having been obtained from ARK. However, the full strength of these Emeralds was not realized, as none of the scientists then working for G.U.N. could comprehend their mystical, almost magical properties.


"While the infant Shadow02 was being transported from the lab in which it was created to G.U.N.'s main Prison Island base, the helicopter in which it was being carried mysteriously malfunctioned, and the capsule in which Shadow02 was contained, along with the seven Chaos Emeralds, was dropped into the ocean. G.U.N. had no more monetary sources with which to continue the project, and had to abandon it in the hopes of someday returning to their quest: to create an Ultimate Life Form, which could be used as an immortal weapon.

"To this day, all who were involved with Project Shadow02 have assumed that it was lost to the depths of the ocean. Yet, there has been no proof of the creature's actual death. Also, the reappearance of the Chaos Emeralds is a mystery within itself.

"However, there is now reason to believe that Project Shadow02 is still alive, roaming the Earth, under a new name and identity.

"Project Shadow02 was lost somewhere over the area of the southern ocean. This ocean is dotted with any number of islands, which, while most are not suitable for human occupation, could support a large number of small animals.

"It is quite possible that the capsule containing Project Shadow02 and the seven Chaos Emeralds could have floated through the salt water and washed up on one of these small islands. There, the project escaped and thrived in the southern climate, while the Chaos Emeralds could have been carried off by any number of small animals and hidden within the island.

"After a number of years, the project eventually found a way off of the island, and the Chaos Emeralds became scattered throughout the world.

"Now, anyone may be wondering: "If Project Shadow02 survived and is alive today, where is it?"

"Through a period of observation and research, it can be safely theorized that Project Shadow02 is none other than world-renowned hero, Sonic the Hedgehog. The blue hedgehog resembles the original Project Shadow to a tremendous extent, to the point where he was mistakenly arrested for the robbery carried out by the original, Shadow the Hedgehog. It has also been observed that Sonic the Hedgehog is also able to perform Project Shadow's trademark Chaos feat: Chaos Control, a warping and distortion of space and time that can move the user to wherever, and possibly whenever, he might desire.

"Sonic the Hedgehog has been spotted living comfortably with friends in Station Square, and does not seem to know anything about Project Shadow02. Therefore, it might be an appropriate idea to leave him well alone for now...

"Lastly, in a follow-up to Project Shadow:

"Shadow the Hedgehog has also been seen in Station Square. He does not seem to be a danger to those around him, and it may also be a good idea to let him be. The hedgehog is actually somewhat quiet and shy, and appears to be recuperating from exhaustion (possibly a case of overexertion after being released). However, it is suggested that the public not be informed too much about this hedgehog's past..."




Knuckles put down the pages of the report. He glanced up at Rouge. "Exactly how long did it take you to write this?"

Rouge shrugged. "Maybe a day to write... much longer to find and verify all of the information." She sat down next to Knuckles on the steps to the shrine of the Master Emerald. "So... what do you think?"

Knuckles handed the paper back to her. "It doesn't mean anything. Everything is still how it used to be... right?"

The bat lightly bopped Knuckles over the head. "Oh, come on! Doesn't any of this mean anything to you?" she sighed.

"That Sonic and Shadow are two of a kind? We all knew that already..."

Rouge sat back and smiled. "Hmph... You're sure taking this all in stride, aren't you?"

Knuckles shrugged. "It doesn't matter... it doesn't change who they are." He paused. "... have you told them yet?"

Rouge shook her head. "No... I mean, it's rather hard to break this kind of news to someone, you know? That you could possibly be... related to one of your friends?"

"By the way... how would they be related?"

"I don't know..." Rouge murmured. "I heard that Project Shadow02 was a 'clone' of the original... though there really wasn't any way to verify that anywhere, short of doing a DNA test on them." Rouge snickered. "And it'd be rather hard to explain that, wouldn't it? 'Excuse me, we need to do a DNA test to see if Sonic's your clone, Shadow...'" The bat laughed. "But really... clone versus original, it's hard to put that into terms of family. I suppose... brothers? Cousins?" Rouge thought. "Though I've heard that people sometimes refer to originals and clones as parents and children--"

She was interrupted by a cough by Knuckles, obviously to stifle a laugh. The red echidna was having trouble keeping a straight face. "What?" he asked, starting to calm down.

Rouge rolled her eyes, but she kept smiling. "It sounds weird, doesn't it? Shadow and Sonic... hee hee...!"

"Anyway..." Knuckles snickered, "how's everyone doing down there? What's it been, about six months since they took down G.U.N.?"

Rouge smiled. "Yeah... and from what I hear, Shadow's recovering pretty well. Speaking of which..." Rouge produced a laptop bag and began rummaging through it. Finally, she pulled out a piece of paper. Handing it to Knuckles, she said, "This is for you.

"We're having a party tonight in Shadow's honor. And I promise you, it's going to be a pretty good one. You interested in coming?"

Knuckles took the paper. Inside was listed the time and place, 8:00 p.m. at Amy's apartment. Shaking his head, he handed it back to Rouge.

"Sorry. I've got to stay here."

Rouge bopped Knuckles across the head again. "Jeez! Don't you ever get out to have a little fun?" Knuckles shrugged.

"Hey... exactly what is Shadow recovering from, anyway?" Knuckles asked.

Rouge shrugged. "Beats me. All I know is, when they reappeared from wherever they went, he was out like a light." She bit her lip. "It was really scary... some of his wounds from before came back... I was so afraid he was going to start bleeding to death. But we got him bandaged up and back at Amy's place. Sonic just told us that Shadow needed some rest and he'd be fine."

"Did he tell you where they went?"

"Nope. Just said, 'that's confidential'. I don't think we're ever going to find out, unless Shadow tells. All he's saying is that they went somewhere really far away, and it took a lot of energy for Shadow to Chaos Control back home. Huh, it must have been a really far distance..." Rouge murmured.

"What I'm wondering is, how did Shadow even manage to destroy that 'Chaos Reversal' thing you told me about in the first place?" Knuckles asked.

"Ah... that." Rouge smiled. "I have another theory about that..."

"Oh, great... another theory..." Knuckles looked away.

"No, listen! You know that poem you taught me?"

"Tikal's poem? Yeah..."

Rouge nodded. "That line... that 'power is enriched by the heart'. That's the key.

"Sonic told me what he heard Shadow say back there... that he wanted to defeat this for his friends... for Maria...

"I think it was love that helped him win."

"What?!" Knuckles nearly fell over backwards. "Shadow?! He... what?!" the red echidna sputtered.

Rouge laughed. "Well, isn't love one of the strongest emotions of the heart? Love for his friends, love for Maria, love for this world? Everyone's capable of it... right, Knuckles?" she grinned. The echidna turned away, slightly flustered.

"Uh... a-anyway, what are you going to do with that report?" Knuckles asked quickly. Suspiciously quickly.

Rouge mentally sighed, knowing it would be impossible to keep Knuckles on the former topic. "Well... I don't know. You see..." The bat took a file folder from her bag.

"These are all files that I took from the workers at the base. There is quite a lot of information here..." she said. "My report's based off of this.

"There's a lot here that the government would be very interested in... if, for nothing else, the advancement of science. There's a lot here... and plus, the rest of it was destroyed in the blast.

"I was thinking of turning this all in to the president... but..."

"But what?"

"I just don't know... if it's right to turn this in... because if Sonic really is... you know." Rouge paused.

Knuckles shrugged and started up the steps toward the Master Emerald. "Whatever you want to do, Rouge..."

Rouge hesitated, looking at the folders in her hand. Silently, she slipped them back into the laptop bag.

Finally, she found herself looking at her report. It wasn't very long or very detailed... but even so...

Was it right to give all this information about her friends to the government?

Did it even matter...?

Rouge glanced at the text and photos covering the page.


She looked up at where Knuckles was, and then over to the edge of the island.

'... I suppose...'

Smiling quietly, Rouge let a gust of wind blow the sheets of paper from her hand. Following it with her eyes, she watched the words fly into the sky, off the island, and certainly into the ocean below...

She turned back to Knuckles. "I'll be going, then. Come if you want to."


The bat spread her wings for flight. There was a lot to be done that afternoon.




'... I could always write another one, anyway...'




Seven o' clock in the evening. The sun was already low in the sky, and the wind was starting to be quite chilly.

Shadow shivered as he stood up from the bench where he'd been sitting. True, it was a nice change from being stuck in bed all day for months, but it was so cold outside...

Hurriedly, he threw the empty triangular box where a small slice of hot pizza had been half an hour ago into the nearest wastebasket.

Where were Tails and Sonic? The black hedgehog had been supposed to meet them an hour ago at the train station...

Suddenly, the doors opened, and the young kitsune and blue hedgehog ran out the door, Sonic holding a good-sized box.

"Hey, Shadow! Sorry we're late," Sonic grinned. "The train's so slow..."

"Well, it's better than being cold," Tails pointed out. "How long have you been waiting here?"

Shadow shook his head. "Not too long. I'm all right. Amy gave me some money to get food in case you were late, anyway."

"Yeah, well, we had to finish up some business back at the workshop," Sonic said, while Tails was nearly bursting with laughter.

"Wait until you see it!" Tails exclaimed. "You're going to like it a lot!"

"Hmm..." Shadow smiled.

It seemed like ever since he had gotten back to Earth, he was smiling a lot more...

"Come on, let's get home before we freeze," Sonic said, eagerly tapping his foot against the concrete. "I'll race you home!"

"Oh, no..." Tails sighed, though a smile stayed on his face.

But Shadow's eyes met Sonic's, and the competition was on.

From the train station, the two hedgehogs started running, though Sonic went just fast enough to keep up with Tails and to make sure Shadow didn't fall too far behind. It had only been a few weeks since he'd recovered his strength...

About halfway to Amy's place, Shadow stopped. Panting, he leaned against a building for support.

"I'm... sorry... I'll walk the rest of the way... I'll meet you at home..."

"It's okay. You just take it easy," Tails said reassuringly. "We'll walk, too."

But Sonic had other ideas. Holding out the box, he pressed it into Shadow's arms.

"We were going to give this to you later today... but I really want to see you try them out," the blue hedgehog smiled.

Shadow took the brown cardboard box. Slightly confused, he set it down on the ground and carefully lifted it open. Slowly, he moved the white tissue paper out of the way...

The black hedgehog suddenly felt a jolt of happiness run down his spine. His face breaking into a smile, he pulled out a pair of hoverskates, just like his old ones.

"Go ahead, try them on!" Tails said. "We had to guess what size your feet were, so I hope they fit all right..."

But the old red-and-white sneakers were already off of Shadow's feet. Sitting against the cold pavement, Shadow slipped the skates on, left first, then right. Standing up, he was slightly startled to hear the sounds of the metal bottoms on the pavement. He'd actually gotten used to hearing the soft padding of the sneakers...

"You... what... how...?!" Shadow exclaimed.

Tails sheepishly folded his hands behind his head. "A while ago, Rouge and Professor Kagaku went up to ARK for some stuff. They found a blueprint for your hoverskates, so they brought it to me, and I figured out how to build them."

"You wanna try them out now?" Sonic grinned, packing the old shoes inside the box. "You have to break them in sometime."

Shadow felt new energy with the new shoes. A new fire in his eyes, he nodded.

The two hedgehogs were off.

Tails watched them go, then shrugged. Oh well.

Hedgehogs will be hedgehogs...




When they got to Amy's apartment, Sonic knocked on the door. Opening it himself, he let Shadow go first.

The entire room was dark. Shadow fumbled around for the light switch on the wall.


"Surprise!" Amy and Rouge jumped out from the sides of the wall.

"Huh... what...?!" Shadow stepped backward, startled.

"Hee hee!" Amy giggled. "Sorry, Shadow."

"It's a party, just for you," Rouge said. "You know what that is, right?"

"A... party...?" Shadow repeated the word. He suddenly felt another memory surface...




"Happy birthday, Shadow!" Maria cheered.

The small hedgehog looked around, confused. The girl laughed. "Don't you get it? It's a party, just for you!" Maria then placed a slice of cake in front of him.

Happily, Shadow dug in with his hands...




"Is there... cake... at a party?" Shadow asked, mumbling. It was so embarrassing having to ask about everything...

It seemed like everything he encountered brought up a new memory of something that had happened long ago... not that it was a bad thing, of course...

Amy laughed, nonetheless. "Of course there's cake at a party! What kind of party would it be otherwise?"

"Is it my birthday?"

"Um..." Amy didn't know.

"Actually, no... your birthday's in June, I think," Rouge said, gently. "It won't be for quite a while now..."

"Oh..." Shadow looked down, slightly embarrassed.

Rouge smiled. "Oh well. Come in, you guys." She glanced at Shadow's feet. "So... I see they've already given you your present..." Sonic and Tails laughed guiltily.

"Aw, come on... he needed a way to get home!"

"I bet you tired him out with a race as an excuse to give him those skates," Rouge raised an eyebrow.

Sonic looked away. "Um... eh-heh... well, uh, I'll go wash my hands..." he mumbled.

"Me too," Tails chimed in, following Sonic to the bathroom.

"Man, she knows everything..." Sonic muttered. Rouge snickered. Having good hearing sure paid off...

Meanwhile, Shadow was looking around the room. It looked a lot different... there were things that he'd never seen before. Streamers, helium balloons, ribbons... it was a lot to take in.

"You like it?" Rouge asked. "It's all for you."

"You didn't have to..." Shadow mumbled.

"Nah, it's all right. We wanted to. Everybody pitched in a little bit to help." Rouge smiled. "We're just glad you're here with us. Oh, and after dinner, we've got something kind of special to show you..."

Dinner was delicious. Even after the pizza, Shadow was hungry from the race home. But even as he ate, he couldn't help but glance under the table now and then at his brand-new hoverskates.

"Oo eally ike dose, donchoo?" Sonic asked through a mouthful of chili dog.

"Don't talk with your mouth full," Amy reprimanded.



Sonic swallowed. "Sorry!"

Shadow laughed. Manners. Something important to know when you lived with Amy.




"All right, TV time!" Sonic yelled, jumping on the couch and grabbing the remote.

"Not quite," Rouge said, snatching the remote from Sonic's hand. "We've got something to show Shadow, don't we?" she asked with a hint of a glare in her eyes.

"Jeez, fine..." Sonic rolled his eyes.

"Ready, Tails?" Rouge asked, plugging in the DVD player.

"Yup!" Tails walked forward with a disc in his hand. He turned to Shadow. "I think you're really going to like this..."

Quietly, Shadow watched from the couch as the others all piled onto it on both sides of him. Rouge hit the 'play' button on the remote...

A very familiar voice, that of an old man's suddenly sounded through the room...

"Shadow, age four months. I am starting this video diary as a way of preserving his and Maria's friendship, by Maria's request, of course..."

Shadow nearly fell off the couch in surprise when a young girl appeared on the television screen.

"Hi, Grandpa!" she waved with one arm. In the other was a tiny, black hedgehog...

"Ha ha ha...!" Sonic burst out laughing. "That's you as a baby?!"

Shadow felt his face turn red, though he couldn't help but smile.

"Say hello to the camera, Shadow," the young Maria smiled gently, waving the little hedgehog's hand for him.

Rouge and Tails smiled, while Amy went, "Aww..."

Baby Shadow gurgled, sticking one hand into his mouth. With the other, he rubbed his eyes.

"I think Shadow's getting sleepy, honey," Gerald said from behind the camera. "Why don't you put him to bed now?"

"Okay, Grandpa," Maria answered, shifting Shadow to a more comfortable position in her arms, then walking out of the room, probably a laboratory, down the hall. The camera followed.

Eventually, the little girl turned right and entered another room, this one a stark contrast to the plain metal of the hallway and laboratory. This room had gentle, pastel-colored wallpaper and a soft bed to the right. A low bookshelf was crammed with picture books, and on the left-hand side was a small cradle. Maria carefully laid Shadow inside, then pulled up a small chair and rocked the cradle back and forth.

From the cradle, Shadow's quiet whimpering could be heard...

"I think he wants a lullaby, Maria," Gerald prompted.

"Okay," Maria smiled at the camera.

As he watched, Shadow felt a strange sensation... like this was familiar...

... this was something that he had enjoyed...

The others all watched and listened intently as Maria's voice echoed from the speakers...




Quietly, I was watching

Small One's sleeping face

There are wrinkles between your brows

If you're having a bad dream, open your eyes

I recall that summer

When I hesitated, afraid of the water

Being pushed from the back, I was able to swim

It's like it was yesterday




Shadow felt completely at peace... this was something that he had missed for so long...

Not so much the words or tune themselves, but the voice that was singing them...

The voice that belonged to a little girl...

... a little girl who had wanted the world to be perfect.

The little girl who had dared to wish, who had been brave enough to speak her most precious dreams out loud.

As he listened to Maria's voice sing the slow melody, Shadow felt a strange, warm sensation...

And for once, the world was perfect.




I can hear the voices

They point to the road which I must take

In the wind that flows like a river

I sing alone




Shadow smiled...

Rouge looked over... and felt happy.

It had been quite a trial, getting up to ARK. Fortunately, in the same way that the computer in Eggman's base had been running, the teleporter was in good condition.

She had tracked down Kagaku, and the two of them had visited the old space colony. There, she had found a multitude of old things... photos, files, the blueprint for Tails, even these videos. Once she'd gotten back to Earth, she'd taken the time to transfer them to DVDs, so the memories wouldn't fade with time. In fact, there was still a large pile of things that were waiting in Shadow's room, waiting for him to look through...

Rouge watched as the video made its way up to focus on Shadow, lying in his bed. The baby hedgehog smiled innocently, reaching for the lens cap.

Meanwhile, Tails and Amy watched the television with a reverence, seeing a side of Shadow that they'd never witnessed before. Both glanced up at the present Shadow.

It was different... even compared to what had been going on the last few months. Amy had let Shadow stay in her apartment to recuperate, and the two of them had gotten along fine... just fine. Tails had even gotten closer to the black hedgehog. Shadow was finally warming up to them...

Maria's voice continued...




Small One is me

Surely, that is who I am

In the mirror, this helpless feeling

Becomes a tomorrow that no one can beat

And like that, I return to my childhood

Little by little, to those days

When I was praised for singing love songs

When I didn't yet know their meaning




"This helpless feeling... becomes a tomorrow that no one can beat"...

Sonic glanced over at his friend.

Those events of fifty years ago... waking up to discover that the innocent little girl who had been his friend was dead...

... what a terrible reality.

Sonic inwardly sighed. Talk about a "helpless feeling."

But just like the words said... sometimes, you just had to wait it out.

And maybe, somehow, things could turn out for the better...

Sonic smiled at Shadow. Talk about something bad gone good again.

The black hedgehog managed to catch the glance, and also turned.

"Hey... Sonic..." Shadow whispered. "Thank you for the skates... all of you."

"No problem, Shad," Sonic waved it off. Shadow's ear twitched in annoyance at the word "Shad."

"Don't call me..." the hedgehog started, but he trailed off.

"Don't call you what?" Tails asked.

"Nothing... it doesn't matter." Shadow shrugged.

'If it makes you happy... We have to compromise, right?'




When I look up to the sky

My voice becomes full

In the wind that flows like a river

You should fly up too

I can hear the voices

They point to the road which I must take

In the wind that flows like a river

By myself, I sing




Everything seemed so at peace in the small room. The five friends, all bunched together on the sofa.

The video had since left the image of Shadow and Maria, and was now zooming around Maria's room. Glimpses of stuffed animals, books, and teddy bears littering the soft, blue carpet.

Suddenly, Rouge stood up. "Hold on a minute..." she said, stepping quickly down the hallway. Tails and Amy smiled knowingly.

In a few minutes, Rouge was back, now holding a thick book. Smiling, she handed it to Shadow.

"I'd give you this later... but I just remembered about it now, and I wanted you to see it before I forgot."

It was a photo album. Shadow opened it up, and on the first page was a picture of himself and Maria, standing there in the room.

Rouge smiled. "And... there's something else, too...

"We want you to come up to ARK, Shadow. Tails rigged up a generator down at Eggman's base, so the transporter will be running for quite a ways to come.

"We didn't touch anything in her room... except for quite a layer of dust, everything up there is still the same way it was, fifty years ago."

Shadow was startled. Glancing from Rouge's face to the television screen, where that familiar room was appearing, and back, he couldn't hide the expression of surprise.

Rouge patted his back gently. "I know a lot of things you wish you'd forget happened up there... but weren't there a lot of good times, too? Come on... what do you say, this Saturday? Come on, guys, what do you think?" The question was met by whoops and cheers from the others.

"What do you say, Shadow?" Sonic asked.

"Come on, Shadow! It'll be fun," Tails added.

"Let's go!" Amy chimed in. "You'll love it!"

Shadow looked around, feeling that familiar tight sensation in the back of his throat. His nose and eyes ready to start watering, he whispered, "You're the greatest friends ever..."

Rouge smiled. "Atta boy. And now, how about some dessert!" she said. "And you just wait until you see what else we've got for you!"

Shadow glanced back at the television, reluctantly... but Sonic grinned.

"Hey. It'll be back here, whenever you want to watch it again. Besides, Rouge got us about 20 discs worth of DVDs. You ought to save some for later!"

Shadow smiled and nodded...




Treasured things are close by

That is what I realized

When I look up to the sky

My voice becomes full

In the wind that flows like a river

You should fly up too

I can hear the voices

They point to the road which I must take

In the wind that flows like a river

I sing alone




The sounds of the lullaby ceased, and the young Shadow could be heard, asleep.

Sonic turned the TV off, and the five walked to the kitchen to have some dessert.






That night, as Sonic was about to head to his room, he happened to pass by where Shadow was staying.

The black hedgehog was fast asleep... but a white sheet of paper was lying on the bed table, shining in the moonlight.

Unable to suppress his curiosity, Sonic tiptoed into the room and held up the sheet of paper.

Written in a rather untidy scrawl, as if someone was just learning to write for the first time, were the words of Shadow's life...




when i first met the world, it seemed like a dream

because the one i needed was there

and i learned to dream, and to wish

for i thought wishes were eternal

but when i got older

i had to learn

the hard way

that nothing was as it seemed

when i was alone

i finally saw the world

for what it was; a lonely place

where nothing good can ever last forever

but somewhere in my heart

i still hoped

and dreamed

that wishes were eternal

i was still walking along an empty, lonely road

when i met the people who are my world now

as much as i hated them, as much as i hated to change

i saw that my dark world was being lit up by them

i saw that my dark, dusty path through life

was sparkling, for the sun was coming up

and then, more than ever

i hoped and prayed that wishes could be eternal

then i finally learned that while it seems

that nothing lasts forever, both the good and the bad

as long as i live, and as long as the sun shines

my wishes are there for me

and i knew that the world was there for keeps

and that my light would never go away

as long as i dreamed, as long as i hoped

as long as i prayed that wishes were eternal

because my happiness is their wish

because their happiness is my wish

because our unending lives are our wishes

that boundless emotions are our wishes

i know








Sonic silently laid the paper back down on the table and glanced at his sleeping friend.

"All the way up there on ARK... I bet Maria's biggest wish was for a friend, Shadow...

"And you gave it to her. You were her wish...

"You gave her happiness..."

The blue hedgehog quietly tiptoed out of the room, even though no one was around. He turned around...

"Good night, Shadow."

The door quietly closed...

... and from beneath the covers,

Shadow smiled.