A/N: I do not own TMNT, Mirage studios does, but the idea for this story is mine. Unless of course this shows up in later episodes, then it's just coincidence. I hope that is not the case, however, as it does involve turtle torture. runs away from crazed fan girls Please read and review at your leisure.
This is a sequel to the supposed One-Shot 'Capture' which tells about the whole ordeal from a brother's point of view.
The night was quiet and cool enough to squelch the heat escaping my body from the brisk run. I gave a small sigh of contentment as I crouched in the shadows of a building, gazing over the city. In a way, my brothers and I were the defenders of the vast metropolis. If only there was some way to live amongst the humans we protect, it might make our job more worth while. I shake my head free of such thoughts. A ninja is to remain hidden in the shadows, never revealing themselves no matter what. We took the oath of a shadow warrior and as such we are destined to live our lives underground and out of sight.
I looked up at the moon and rose to my feet. Judging by its position I must meet my brothers soon, and I'm never late. Leaping rooftops in a single bound, I agilely made my way towards the designated meeting ground. A faint cry reaches my ears. My feet nearly missed the next ledge when my heart leapt into my throat. I knew that scream. It is one of my brothers and he sounded hurt. In one sweeping motion I flipped back, using my downward momentum to my advantage to land safely on the roof. As soon as my feet touched the cement I was off like a shot towards the sound. I was only slightly surprised to see a shadow appear to either side of me, their movements a mirror of my own; I knew immediately they were my two brothers.
We continued to race forward, eyes open and searching for our other brother. It isn't until we reach the docks that we realize something isn't right. We should have found him by now. I growl in frustration as I put away my shell cell. It's not like him to not pick up. I glance at my siblings, who in turn look to me for instructions on how to proceed.
"Split up and search for Don. Raph, you take the east side, I'll take the west side, and Mikey will take the north side. Call us as soon as you find anything. We'll meet back here in one hour." My brothers nod and spring into action.
No alley went unturned, no shadow unchecked, and no rooftop uninvestigated. I could feel my heart pounding in my chest as the hour slowly ticked down to minutes. There was no sign of my dear brother anywhere and I was beyond worried. His scream had been one of anguish and that in of itself concerned me. Yet there was no trace of him to be found. I headed back to the docks to meet up with my brothers. Mikey was already there waiting for me, his expression one of fear and desperation; Raphael was nowhere to be seen.
"Where's Raph?" I asked, jumping down from the rooftop.
Michelangelo fidgeted nervously. "I don't know. He hasn't shown up yet."
My eyes narrowed and I quickly whipped out my shell cell. The last thing I needed was another missing brother. As I began to dial the numbers I heard a familiar snort to my left.
"Jeez, a little impatient aren't ya. I still got two minutes," Raphael grunted, emerging from the shadows with crossed arms.
"Any sign of him?" Mike asked, his voice laced with hope.
We both shook our heads dejectedly.
Raph growled low, smacking a clenched fist into his open palm. "When I find out who took Donnie I'm gonna make them pay."
"We have to find him first," I said quietly. "Does anyone know how Don would trace our shell cells?" I hung my head when they both shook theirs. I knew it was a long shot but it was worth a try. As we stood silently in thought, something blew against my ankle; what I saw made my blood run cold. I reached down silently, numbly, and retrieved the piece of fabric, bringing it up for my brothers to see. My large fingers gingerly held the purple mask that belonged to my missing sibling. We stood there stupidly for a moment, none of us able to shake the shock from our bodies.
Only when my ears picked up the sound of footsteps to my right did I move, motioning for my brothers to fade into the surrounding shadows. My eyes narrowed to slights when I saw a young woman approach, holding a large wooden bo staff and a few other items that looked remarkably like our pads in her hands. She appeared to be searching for the mask I now possessed. The woman muttered a few things under her breath I did not catch, but at the moment I really didn't care. She knew where Donatello was and she was going to tell us. Apparently, Raphael had the same thought and lunged at her before I could blink.
The woman screamed frightfully at the approaching turtle, swinging the bo staff awkwardly. I growled to myself for not having seen the outcome beforehand, but it was too late to go back now. So, instead, I nodded to Michelangelo and the two of us abandoned our shadowy hideouts to confront the human. Raphael had already disarmed the woman and had a good grip on her forearm, snarling that she had better explain herself. The young woman trembled and watched with wide eyes as we approached.
"You…you're just like him," I heard her whisper.
"Where is Donatello?" Though I tried to remain calm I knew I had failed when she gulped nervously, looking between myself, Mikey, and Raphael nervously.
"You'll kill me as soon as I tell you," she whimpered.
Raphael growled angrily and I saw his hand tighten around her arm. "We'll kill you if don't tell us so you'd better start talking."
To my dismay she bit the insides of her lips in defiance. I knew it was only a matter of time before she cracked but we didn't have that kind of time to waste. As I stepped forward to better interrogate her, Raph surprised us both by decking her in the side of the face. I lunged at him and grabbed his raised arm before he could strike again, asking him fiercely what the shell he thought he was doing. He growled in reply and voiced what I had only recently been thinking, that we didn't have the time to sit around twiddling our thumbs.
"We'll do worse than that if you don't start talking, missy," my hot-headed brother growled, trying to yank his arm back.
I felt kind of bad for the woman. I knew how hard Raphael could punch and I was used to rigorous training and the sort, but judging by the way she clutched her cheek, she was not. A tidal wave of relief flooded through me when she agreed to take us to him, clearly not liking the alternative as she wiped the blood from her chin. Instead of allowing her to walk freely, I took hold of the arm Raph had not bruised and we were off. I felt like such a fool when it was clear our brother was being held on one of the larger ships docked at the harbor. We had spent an entire hour searching and he had been right under our noses.
What kind of a leader, a brother, am I? How can I expect to protect my family when I can't even find them? If only I hadn't recommended we split up to cover more ground he might not have been captured. If I had been a better leader I would have insisted we stay together. Then we could have fought off his attackers instead of leaving him to fend for himself, alone and without backup. I failed him. Because of my stupid plan I don't know what has happened to my dear brother and now we have to rely on a stranger to find him. And if things weren't bad enough, the ship we were being led to had the Foot insignia printed boldly on the port side. We could only trust her word there was no trap lying in wait as we ascended the docking ties.
Once on board we slipped into the shadows, making our way quietly across the deck. I shifted beside her as she tried to unlock the door leading inside. I could feel her trembling and wasn't surprised when she nearly dropped the keys. As soon as the door opened I stopped dead in my tracks; my heart dropped like a lead weight to my feet. I heard it and I knew everyone else did too: the sound of someone's tortured screams. It sounded extremely eerie as it drifted up from the depths of the ship, echoing down the empty halls until it reached our ears.
Without wasting another minute, I practically dragged the woman down the stairs, Raphael and Mikey quickly taking up the rear. We walked along the large corridors of the ship until we reached a steel plated door. I could practically fell the woman gulp nervously but a quick squeeze of her arm made whatever decision she was mulling over. She punched in the code to the key pad and the door opened with a hiss. Much to my dismay, we still had more walking to do before we could rescue our brother. And to add to our dilemma, the screams had long since stopped.
Once again, I pulled the woman down the hall, who obediently hobbled along behind. Without glancing over, I asked her how much longer before we reached our brother. She remained silent for a moment as she got her bearings straight before stating shakily that he was being held on the next floor down in the last room on the left. My stride grew as we hustled towards the end of the hall and down the narrow steps. As soon as I saw there were no more security measures to go through, I broke into a run, leaving the woman behind. I didn't care about her anymore. We knew where Donatello was being held and that's all that mattered.
As one, the three of us shouldered the door and it launched open with a resounding thud. My heart leapt into my throat as I took in the scene within the room. There was Don, strapped to a large metal table with his plastron split in half and hanging open. Blood…there was so much blood. Dr. Stockman hovered over the limp body, eyes wide in surprise. He sneered at us not to move as he placed the scalpel to my brother's neck, threatening to slit his throat if we so much as thought about coming to his rescue. I don't know what possessed Raphael to do it, but before I could stop him he had whipped out his sai and threw it at the mad scientist. I thanked Master Splinter a million times over for his persistent training in accuracy when the weapon pierced Stockman's hand like a hot knife through butter. The human drew back, cursing wildly as he threw the sai to the ground in his haste to retreat.
I decided to reprimand my hot-headed brother later for such a reckless action because there were more pressing matters to attend to. I was at my brother's side in an instant, nearly slipping on the blood covered floor in my haste. My hearted pounded in my chest as I gazed down at him. His pupils were huge, covering nearly all of the brown in his eyes, despite the bright lights glaring down upon him. Even when I moved the light so it wasn't shinning directly on him they stayed dilated. Michelangelo was the first to speak, calling out to our dear brother. I had hoped he would speak, say something to let us know he was all right; but no, he merely stared up at us blankly. He didn't even so much as blink. The only comfort we had that he was still with us was his slow and shallow breathing.
Raph and I unclasped the supports holding up his plastron, gently laying the two pieces back where they belonged. I winched when he whimpered softly. I could only imagine the amount of pain he was experiencing and it made my blood boil. We needed to get him back to the lair as soon as possible. I knew he needed medical treatment but the only one with enough knowledge was him. Master Splinter knew herbal remedies but holistic medicine could only do so much. Pushing such morbid thoughts aside, I studied the shackles, trying to figure out the best way to remove them. I must have taken too long because Raph jammed a sai into one of them, attempting to pry the thing open. We all jumped back when Don suddenly convulsed, electricity sparking across his body. I could hear his teeth grinding together as he tried not to cry out, but the pain soon over took him.
"Turn it off!" he screamed huskily.
I whirled around, desperately searching for a control panel or something that resembled such a thing. Raph began stabbing some large metal panel so I went to aid him, my katanas slicing through the many wires and buttons. Don's screams weren't letting up and I was beginning to panic. I knew we needed to do something before it was too late but even my sharp mind was at a loss. Suddenly, he stopped screaming and collapsed against the table. I could smell his burning flesh from where I stood, the scent making my stomach reel. As grateful as I was the electricity had stopped I was also afraid for my brother's life.
Michelangelo's frantic cry made me realize my fear had become reality: Don wasn't breathing! I was at his side in an instant and made to begin chest compressions, only to realize I couldn't. With his plastron sliced in two any pressure would push it into his chest and could damage his organs, causing more harm than good. I screamed in desperation. Dr. Stockman could very well undo the damage he had caused but there was no way of tracking him down in time. To my surprise, Raphael suddenly appeared at my side, shoving the young woman from before towards our still brother. Being too focused on Donatello, I hadn't even noticed he had left.
"If he dies so do you," I heard him snarl. The threat was empty, I would make sure, but she didn't know that. Though I despised resorting to such actions, we were in an extreme situation. And desperate times called for desperate measures.
The woman quickly pointed to a metal cart in one of the room's corners, indicating she was going to need it. She grabbed two long probes with a flat, circular head and switched on the machine. A high pitched squeal was emitted from the device, similar to the sound in those medical shows before they all of a sudden yell 'clear!' My heart skipped a beat when she did just that. She opened his plastron halves and placed the two probes on either side of his still heart. Had I not known this could save his life I would have broken her arms in an instant. Instead, I gritted my teeth and prayed to whatever was listening that this would work and he would okay.
I heard Michelangelo begin to heave as the shocks continued, but I couldn't comfort him just yet. I had to be sure this was working. When the red organ suddenly began convulsing of its own accord, I nearly collapsed to my knees with relief. I was definitely going to need some calming tea after this whole ordeal was over with because I highly doubted I would sleep for a while.
The young woman gulped hard and nervously explained there were no supplies on board the ship that could effectively reconnect Donatello's plastron. I nodded in understanding and told her we had such things back at the lair. Raphael and I unclasped the restraints and ever so carefully removed our brother from the dreaded table. It was hard to get a good grip around his shell with the amount of blood encased on it. I assigned Mikey the duty of keeping an eye on the human until we had reached home as she was the only one capable of fixing Don. When she opened her mouth to protest, I shot her a steely glare, letting her know any resistance would not be tolerated. To my relief, she slumped her shoulders in defeat and allowed Mikey to lead the way.
We moved slowly through the sewers in fear that too much movement might further harm Donatello. Being the one supporting his upper half, I kept a close eye on his breathing; deeply worried he might try to leave us again. Don groaned softly when I shifted his dead weight in my arms but made no other signs of regaining consciousness. I held my breath each time he twitched or moaned, wishing he would awaken and stay with us while we cared for him. But, my hopes remained unanswered when his breathing slowed even further. The entrance to the lair shone like a beckon from heaven as we closed in on it, our pace quickening. Normally, I would seek out Master Splinter as soon as I stepped foot inside but my mind was on other, more pressing, matters. Raphael and I sped towards the couch while Mikey and the young woman gathered the supplies necessary to treat his injuries from the infirmary.
"My sons?" I heard Splinter's voice ask from his doorway as we neared the middle of the dojo. I looked in his direction and halted momentarily, my mouth open to begin spouting out an explanation. However, I didn't need to do so when I saw his expression. The order to take Don to the sofa hadn't fully left his mouth before Raph and I were off again. We were easing him on top of the lumpy cushions when Mikey and company burst into the area. I was greatly relived when sensei didn't ask any questions about the human female. I'm not afraid of much, but I feared his wrath when he found out how we 'convinced' her to help us.
We watched like ravenous vulture as the young woman expertly sutured the two halves of my brother's plastron. Beginning first with the inner muscle and tissue then ending with the outer shell. The last part was difficult as our shells are thick and hard, not very susceptible to the curved needle. So, she dug through the supplies and found some medical glue to use. Where Don got a hold of surgical glue I'll never know because I probably won't ever ask about it; I have a feeling I won't like the answer anyway. It was hard to see my dear brother in such a state and knowing I was mostly to blame. If nothing else I should have been able to sense he was in danger before it was too late. But no, I was too busy admiring the human infested city we live in. Kind of ironic to think it's the very humans we protect that did this to my brother.
I snapped out of my thoughts when the woman leaned back, heaving a rather broken sigh. She spoke to no one in particular while stating that he should pull through. After receiving the okay from sensei, my brothers and I moved Donnie up to his room where he could rest on something more comfortable than the couch. One of us stayed by his side at all times in case anything went wrong; we weren't about to take any chances. The first shift belonged to Mikey as he refused to let go of Don's hand. Raphael and I headed back towards the entertainment area to find Master Splinter trying to talk with the young woman. I cringed when she shifted uncomfortably in the armchair, obviously afraid we would harm her again.
When I asked her what she was doing with my brother's things, she admitted to being an acquaintance with Dr. Stockman. She had seen several Foot soldiers carrying Don into the room we found him in but adamantly protested her involvement in taking part in his torture. She told us Stockman had ordered her to dispose of his pads and weapon so she had no idea what was being done to him until Raphael had dragged her to Don's side.
I bowed my head to her and began to apologize profusely for our actions. We were worried for our brother and could not bear the thought of losing him. We were desperate and would do anything to help him, even if it meant dishonoring ourselves. I could tell sensei was not at all happy with us, his twitching whiskers and fidgeting tail only outward signs of his disapproval. I knew we were in for some brutal training but all that mattered right now was that Don was safe. When she asked to leave both Raph and I spoke simultaneously that wasn't possible. She would need to stick around until Don awoke and would need to treat his wounds until he was able to do so himself. To my relief, Splinter agreed to this, reassuring the woman no harm would come to her while in our care.
The rest of the night went by excruciatingly slow. I took the shift after Mikey and Raphael after me. I could tell neither of us wanted to leave Don's side, but only did so because a brother would be there if anything happened. Master Splinter relieved Raph so he came to sit in the recently vacated armchair. None of us could sleep so we settled on watching television, though nothing good was on at this late hour. I occupied the folding beach chair while Mike and the young woman sat upon the couch. As I glanced in her direction I realized we had yet to know her name, but I decided against asking her at the moment. I could tell she did not want to sleep with all of us around but her head kept bobbing as she tried to stare at the screen. I was heading upstairs to grab a blanket for her when I heard Master Splinter's voice coming from Don's room. At first I thought he was merely talking to the purple banded ninja, telling him a story or something of the like, until I heard Don talk back! His voice was weak and low, but it was definitely him.
My heart leapt into my throat and I raced bounded up the stairs, calling to my brothers that Don was awake. We all huddled outside the door not wanting to barge in until our master was finished, but he must have sensed our presence and cleared his throat loudly. Though Donatello was pale from the blood loss and looked like he'd been hit by a bus he was a sight for sore eyes. I gripped his hand tightly, giving it a reassuring squeeze. When he made the comment that we looked like someone had just died, I paled. I told him as best I could that we had almost lost him, leaving out the bitter details that still plagued my thoughts. I would have given anything to hug him but did not want to risk any further injury to his plastron, so I settled for squeezing his hand a little harder.
"I'm amazed you guys were able to find me as quickly as you did. And which one of you stitched me up?" Don asked tiredly, his eyes beginning to regain their normal sparkle. "It feels almost as good as new."
I blanched, as did my brothers and sensei, all eyes darting away from Don's face. There was no way we could tell him what we had done to save him. When he pressed the subject I told him not to worry about it, giving his shoulder a pat. What mattered the most was that he was home and safe. He didn't look to convinced but when he yawned we took that as a signal to leave and let him rest. When I opened the door I was surprised to see the young woman standing just outside the doorway, fist raised to knock. I quickly blocked her from view and continued on my way, forcing her back into the hallway. She asked quietly how he was doing and if he needed any painkillers or fresh bandages. I smiled at her and shook my head, grateful of her concern.
We stood outside Donatello's room and discussed the next course of action. She was to stay here for at least another week, until Don was back on his feet and well. The only problem was Don should never know about what they had done. Though I hated to keep secrets from my brother, I knew he would never forgive us if he were to find out. This issue would be solved by slipping medication into his tea that would make him sleep, and once he was dozing the woman would change his bandages and tend to the wound.
I could tell she didn't seem to thrilled about the idea but did not object, simply nodding her head in defeat. I figured she was afraid that any protest would land her another sore jaw and I hated that. But, he is our brother and we would do anything for family—and I mean anything.
A/N: So…what did ya think? Please be honest. Did it suck? Did it rock? Was it bleh? Was it wow? Constructive criticism is always appreciated but flames will be read, some considered, and most tossed in my fireplace to keep me warm.