Disclaimer: Only Peter Laird and the other guys at MIRAGE own the turtles. Not me, unfortunately.

Author's Note: This is my first attempt at a TMNT story, so be gentle please. It was inspired by Issue #2 of the second volume of the Tales of the TMNT. I loved the idea of Splinter being able to travel outside of his body to someplace far away, so I have decided to try and expand upon the idea. I've actually had this short beginning of this story in my head for awhile now, but I couldn't come up with a valuable story for the rest of it. I'm not exactly sure where I will be going with this one, but I will try to make it good. Sorry it's so short, but it's only the first chapter so bear with me. I will try to lengthen the chapters as the story progresses. And like all the other stories out there, please review and tell me what you guys think.

"Away From Myself"

By Madvy

Chapter 1-Can I Really Do It?

He wasn't sure if he could do it. It wasn't like he hadn't ever tried it before, because he had. But that was only for a minute at the most, never for the length of time his father was now warning him of. At first, the idea had seemed almost absurd, but the more he thought about it, the more plausible it had become. After all, Splinter had done it before not too long ago. But him, well, he was another story.

Though he would never admit it to anyone, he was a little afraid to try astral projection in its full entity. He had had practice with it before, leaving his body for a few second long exercises and always under his master's careful supervision. Still, the blue clad turtle had only recently begun the more challenging steps of his mental training. He had mastered meditation long ago as well as being able to channel his energy into specific parts of his body and being able to fight using only is chi (life energy). But extended astral projection was still something he struggled with.

Leo had been practicing with Splinter for some time now. His practices were intentionally spread out because, until one had become a true master of astral projection, allowing the soul to spend any time outside its natural home would drain the body of a good amount of energy. Leo would often be excused from regular practice and spend the rest of the day sleeping because the mental exercises were so strenuous. This would regularly annoy the other turtles, especially Raphael, who felt that Splinter was just letting Leonardo get off easy while they still had to practice.

Raph would often ask Leo why he wasn't practicing with them as much nowadays, while Donnie would inquire as to why Leo was so tired as of late. Mikey wondered what his oldest brother and his father were doing in Splinter's room for up to hours at a time. Leo never liked to lie to anybody, let alone to his brothers. But Splinter had made him promise not to tell the others of their special sessions because he felt that they weren't ready to endure training which required some of the greatest amounts of concentration that ninjitsu could require.

At first, Leo had questioned his father as to why they wouldn't tell the other members of their family. If seemed so out of character for Master Splinter to want to keep a secret from any of his sons. But Splinter had remained steadfast to his decision. "We shall allow them to train with us when they are first able to master full meditation," was his response. Though Leo still wasn't sure, this secret didn't seem like too big of a deal. And he trusted his master, so he kept his mouth shut. Yet, he still had to tell his brothers something, and not lie at the same time. Luckily, Leo had a way of bending the truth to where he wasn't lying yet wasn't betraying his promise to Splinter.

"Sensei and I have been having special sessions together. It's nothing, just something to help me improve my concentration. That's all." Such an answer would usually satisfy Don and Mike (to an extent at least), but Raph was always more persistent. He would continue asking Leo, again and again, why he kept skipping practice to sleep and what he and their Sensei were really doing. Leo could tell that Raph knew that something was up and that he would stop at nothing to find out what. Raphael was never one to enjoy being left out of a secret, big or small.

It got so bad that Leo was finally forced to ask Master Splinter if he could possibly let Raph in on their secret, just to get the prying turtle off his back. But the old rat retained his original choice. "No. We shall continue your lessons in private. As I have said before, when your brothers are ready, they will join us. For now, reassure them that all is still well, and that they do not have to worry anymore."

And that was how life had progressed over the last few weeks. The sessions continued, each day, leaving Leo a bit tired, but more skilled in the ways of the mystic arts. Until the day came when Splinter decided to push Leo's training to a higher level.

"My son, I believe today might be an appropriate time to try something more difficult," said Splinter.

"What is it Sensei?" asked Leo.

"It is a degree of astral projection that I have used only on sparse occasions, yet one that I have found most valuable in the past." Leo leaned in closer to hear. Such a startling jump in his training was a rare occurrence and one that had peaked his curiosity. "Today I will teach how to travel to other planes of the consciousness, to other places where only souls can reach, to use what you have been learning from me to train with other teachers outside of this physical world."

At first, a slight daze was all that ruled over Leo. He wasn't completely sure that he had understood or even heard what his sensei had just said. It all seemed so difficult to comprehend. The truth of the matter was that the turtle was in shock. 'Travel to other planes of consciousness, go where only souls can go, train with other teachers…what could Splinter possibly be referring to?' thought Leo, 'I know I was practicing to learn how to separate my soul from my body, but never to a degree like this.'

"My son, this exercise is one of the most difficult of the mental practices. It involves total concentration combined with relaxation. It entails intense focus through pure thought, as well as the ability to follow energy trails that shall be your only guide into the other planes. One must have courage because a journey such as this can last for hours, and one that can leave the body empty for extended periods at a time."

Hurried thoughts swam through Leo's mind. 'Total concentration? Intense focus? Last for hours? Leave the body empty for extended periods of time? What could Master Splinter possibly be thinking on this one?' Leo was so lost in his thoughts that he almost didn't hear Splinter's voice once more.

"Leonardo? My son, did you hear what I have said?"

Snapping out of his thoughts, Leo quickly found his voice once more. "But master, do you really think I can do it? I mean, I haven't had as much practice with this as you have. I know my soul can travel freely in this world, but outside of the physical plane? I…I can barely handle reentering my body after only a few minutes, a half-hour at the most, but…this? I just…just…"

Sensing his son's obvious discomfort, Splinter laid a reassuring hand on Leo's shoulder. "Leonardo, I have faith in you. Do not forget, I have been closely monitoring your progress and I believe that you are ready. You have been doing remarkably well. You have demonstrated a control over astral projection that I, myself, am amazed you have been able to grasp in such a short time. I feel that you are not giving yourself enough credit. I am sure that you will be able to handle this."

"You really think I can do this?"

"Yes. You only need remember what I have taught you and have confidence in your skills. Besides, I believe that you will enjoy the outcome of this…excursion. So, are you ready to try?"

Upon his first instinct, Leo probably would have said 'No,' but hearing his master express such confidence in him, filled Leo will more self-reassurance than he felt in a long time. "Yeah, I mean, yes sensei. If you believe in me, then I guess I'm willing to try anything."

"All right. But first, I must take care of something." Leaving Leo sitting on the floor, Splinter walked to the front of his room. Sliding the door aside, he called to Michelangelo, who was sitting, as usual, in front of the television screens in the living room. "Michelangelo. Michelangelo!"

Snapping out of a daze, Mikey quickly twisted his head around towards his father's voice. "Yeah, oh sorry sensei. I didn't hear you there. What is it?"

"Michelangelo, if you please, will you tell your brothers that today shall be a day off from your studies and not to disturb either me or Leonardo for the rest of the day. And the same goes for you."

"Ok, sensei. I'll tell everybody just as soon as Happy Days is over."

"Thank you my son. Now if you will excuse me, Leonardo and I have some special training to complete." And with that, Splinter closed his door on a now somewhat confused Michelangelo.

Quietly, Leonardo watched as his sensei closed the door and walked across the room. All was silent, until the rat suddenly broke the quiet. "Now that that is settled, let us begin." Realizing that there was no turning back now, Leo nodded and waited for his master to begin.

The two had now seated themselves across from one another in the center of the room, each taking up the traditional lotus position of meditation. With eyes closed, they sat in silence, as the sounds of the rest of the lair filled the air: the TV that Michelangelo was still watching, the grunts, punches, and kicks from the dojo as Raphael vented his usual anger on a training dummy, and the squeaks and clangs as Donatello tinkered with yet another of his many inventions. None of the three turtles would have guessed as to what Leonardo and Master Splinter were about to do or to where the two were about to go.

Author's Note: Well, that's it for now. Don't worry. I promise to update really soon. I'm going to try this story out on my little sister to see what she thinks of it and, based on how the reviews go, whether I will be continuing this story for too much longer. As I have been learning in my Economics class, if the demand for more of my story is high, then I will just have to keep on supplying. Take care everyone and as always, GOD BLESS:)