Title: Entangled

Author: Jayde

Rating: R for adult situations

Summary: Raphael has a knotty problem.

Credits: Sassy still gets credit for the beta read ... even if she refused to change a word.

Disclaimer: Owning Raphael ... Nope, not even gonna go there.

"What the hell?"

Gabrielle shifted a little, and winced as stiffened muscles protested and ropes chaffed unpleasantly against the skin of her wrists. She blinked repeatedly, but the intense black remained. She was tied, in a dark place ...

"Morning," a low masculine voice spoke in her right ear. She wasn't alone.

"How …?" she started to question.

"Drugged," he replied before she could finish. She shifted again and found that she was sitting up with her back against something hard and unyielding, and she was tied at both wrists and ankles to weighted objects. She tried lifting her right hand and was met by certain resistance and an indrawn breath from right behind. "Quit movin'," he ordered sharply.

"Why?" Gabrielle retorted, trying again. This time her wrist was jerked hard, and the noose of rope tightened painfully around her flesh. "Ow!"

"That's why," he responded. "We're tied together." In the dark, Gabrielle frowned. She stretched her fingers back as far as she could, and encounter faintly rough skin, and an oddly thick digit. Memories started to swirl to the surface of the moments just before everything went black.

"You!" she accused, her tone harsh with sudden rage. She twisted violently, trying to remove herself enough to face her hated enemy.

"Quit it ya crazy …," Raphael began. He used what little leverage he had to pin her limbs together to still her thrashing. "We're trapped, ya get that?" He breathed for a moment through the pain of wrists and ankles rubbed raw by her frantic movements. "And fer the record, I'm not any happier about it than you are."

Three weeks earlier …

The walls of the alley rang with the sounds of combat. Steel clashed against steel as black clad Foot soldiers met violently with their shell-backed enemies. Raphael was in his element now, leaping over Mike to slam into a Foot goon. On his way back up, the red masked turtle found himself face to face with another soldier carrying a pair of butterfly swords. This one was a little smaller than the others, but he seemed to be faster.

"You wanna dance?" Raph invited, tapping the tip of his sai against the Foot's sword. The battle started as they parried, thrust and circled each other. Raphael's brute strength and the Foot soldier's lightening speed warred for superiority as the others fought around them. But suddenly the tide turned as Raph's adversary tripped over a fallen body. Only a lucky roll to the side helped the soldier avoid a thrown sai.

Raphael growled in annoyance at the miss as the Foot soldier popped back up, weapons at the ready.

"Raph!" Leo's shout brought him to a halt, and he watched through narrowed eyes as the remaining Foot soldiers vanished up a nearby fire escape. There was something just a little different about the one he had fought … It only took a second more for the answer to come. A woman.

The bitch with the butterfly swords – of all the people to be tied up with, this was not his first choice.

Raphael sighed, and considered the situation. They were bound together at each ankle and wrist with her back pressed against his plastron. His hands were also tied together, but his feet weren't. He decided to try a little experiment.

"What are you doing?" she questioned as he started moving one of his legs in preparation to rise, dragging her along.

"I wanna see if we can stand up," he responded briefly. Using his shell to brace against the wall he struggled to get them both upright, but there just wasn't enough slack in the ropes that bound their ankles together. After a few minutes of effort, he relaxed and sat down again.

Gabrielle shifted about, trying to find any way of gaining distance. The turtle had worked up a sweat with his trying to stand, and his skin was warm against hers. It was aggravating her, but she couldn't seem to find a position where they weren't touching. If only their captors hadn't taken away her jacket …

"Would ya quit squirmin' already?" Raph groaned. "We need to find the door." If there is one, Raph added silently.

"Why? We can't get out," Gabrielle argued back. Raph sighed with frustration, and leaned his head forward until his mouth was nearly touching her ear. Her hair brushed against his face and stuck to the sweat on his forehead.

"You sayin' you like it here ... with me?"

She jerked her head away as far as she could get. "When I get loose ..." she snarled softly, her shoulders aching with the effort to keep some space between them.

"Not if I get loose first," Raph muttered, leaning away. "Work with me here."

Gabrielle closed her eyes for a moment. Reopening them did not change her situation in the slightest. She returned to her former position. "What do you want me to do?" she breathed.

"I'm gonna lean left, and try to roll onto my knees," he explained. He didn't wait for any more comments, and started to tilt his body. Gabrielle moved with him, and gravity took over as they dropped to the side. Raph gritted his teeth he was taking the weight of both of them now. "Roll forward," he instructed. To give her a little credit, she did try to comply, but she had no leverage in this position as her legs were between his. With effort, Raph threw his body weight forward, taking her with him. He caught his weight on his hands as best he could without snapping her wrists, but it was precarious. It was easier with his knees, as his ankles weren't tied together.

Beneath him, Gabrielle attempted to calm the shaking in her arms as she tried to share the burden of holding them up. Her hair, once bound in a low ponytail, had mostly come loose and hung about her face in an irritating curtain. It didn't change her outlook, of course, because it was still completely dark. "How do we move?" she queried, and Raph snorted, blowing her hair out of his face.

"You ever quit askin' questions?"

She bit her lip to suppress a small laugh.

"We move slowly, or we'll overbalance and I'll land on you," Raph continued. He slid his hands forward a few inches, taking her hands along for the ride. He then crawled on his knees to bring them that short distance. He angled towards where he thought a wall was, and they started agonizingly checking the perimeter. After an undetermined number of minutes spent creeping over the floor, he stopped. "Wait," he breathed, and slid his fingers over what felt like a seam at the bottom edge of the wall. He groped further, raising his torso a little to feel further up. His fingers encountered what had to be a hinge. "Got it," he explained. The door would swing in, and if they stayed here, they would be behind it. There might be some advantage in that.

Four hours earlier …

In retrospect, it had probably been a trap.

He and Casey had been running over the rooftops, when he had seen familiar black clad figures creeping across a vacant lot. He had signaled to Casey that he was going down to check it out. There were only three of them, so it wasn't like he would be outnumbered.

Once on the ground, he had dispatched two of them really quick. But the third was his old pal with the butterfly swords. They just kept bumping into each other, and he knew she was getting bent out of shape over it. Every time they had a mission for their master, they seemed to run into him and his brothers.

But now they were, for all intents and purposes, alone.

She circled right, looking for an opening. Raphael grinned. He was going to enjoy this.

Neither of them saw the intruder approach. Nor did they notice the smoke bomb until it fell between them, and then it was too late.

Raph leaned his head back against the wall, and considered all the angles of their predicament. They had to get untied. Nothing else in an escape plan could be considered until that had been accomplished.

"Hey," he began. "If you could manage to cooperate for a while, I think I could get us outta this." He shifted his wrists to indicate the ropes that bound them together.

"What is your plan?" Gabrielle asked, but she was resigned to going along with whatever it was.

"I'm gonna untie it with my teeth," he replied. Unseen, Gabrielle rolled her eyes. They were going to be in here forever. "Just bring your hands up with mine. I need the knots close."

When Raph started to raise his hands, he found that she wasn't fighting him. He brought his hands as close as he could, but he still couldn't reach. Instead, he found he had to lean his head forward and basically curl himself around her to get his mouth to the ropes.

Gabrielle breathed in sharply as his thick forearms pressed hard against her breasts. His chin was practically resting on her shoulder as he finally got his teeth on the first knot. He worried at it for a moment, checking the size and location. This knot held his left hand to hers, and the knot itself was over her wrist. He adjusted position a little, pulling their hands as close as he could.

She turned her head away, and tried to think of something else – anything else, really, other than his hot breath on her arm as he tugged at the knot. But there wasn't anything else to concentrate on. His arms squeezed her breasts as he struggled.

He paused, taking a breather. "You got a name?" he questioned.

"Yes," she retorted, her temper short. Raph sighed, his breath ghosting over her arm. "Gabrielle, you?"

"Raphael." He bent to his task again, working on the knot.

Closing her eyes, she tried thinking of all the interesting ways she could kill him when this was over. His cheek rubbed against hers as he fought to get the knot loosened. She fidgeted uncomfortably. How long was this going to take? She didn't know how much more of this she could take without … Well, without doing something.

He jerked hard at the knot, and her breasts were nearly flattened from his efforts. All she could hear was the sound of his teeth scraping against the rope. All she could smell was his musky scent that had permeated the small space.

Suddenly, he moved his legs, drawing his knees up and apart. He was unconsciously seeking leverage. Gabrielle gasped, as the new position drew her legs apart as well. She started to struggle, but he growled a warning – his teeth still engaged with the stubborn rope. She trembled as a completely primal thrill shot through her body.

This was insane. She was a trained Foot soldier – taught to ignore pain and hardship – to fight to the death for her master's honor. But that apparently hadn't prepared her for something like this. Curled against her enemy, waiting for him to succeed in freeing them – and strangely she was confident that he would triumph over the ropes – she felt completely vulnerable.

Raph's head suddenly whipped back. The knot had loosened. He took a deep breath, and then set to it again. She groaned softly. His mouth was actually on her skin now as he battled the rope. Gabrielle squirmed restlessly. He grunted sharply in her ear as he made more progress with the knot. She felt perspiration break out on her forehead as she tried to focus on something other than all the physical sensation. But it was impossible. She could do nothing but close her eyes … and feel. Every jerk and twitch of his muscles as he worked, every breath expelled and drawn in again passing over the inside of her left arm – she was surrounded.

She gasped aloud as something suddenly gave – a tightening that was nearly painful, followed by a loosening that was almost bliss.

"That's one," Raph noted, panting a little with exertion as he rested his chin on her shoulder. She nodded her head a little in response. One knot down. How many more to go?

"So," Raphael began, sliding his cheek sensuously against hers. "You ready to go again?"