It was now one day after the group of heroes had faced the newly reborn Eclipse. After a long discussion, everyone decided it best to stick together in case Eclipse showed up again. It was still raining outside with thunder and lighting shaking the skies.
The group was currently in Rouge the Bat's mansion, sitting in the living room watching the news on the big screen. Shadow was upstairs in the guest bathroom taking a shower.
"And now for the weather." A brunette lady in a blue suit announced.
The screen swapped to an old bald man with glasses standing in front of a huge world map.
"Thanks Susan. A freak storm has been brewing in every single part of the world. Although not powerful, this storm is what scientists call the beginning of the apocalypse."
Amber looked on with interest and addressed Rouge without turning to her.
"Do you think Eclipse and Shadow could have something to do with this?"
"I have no idea." She answered.
Just then the doorbell rang. Rouge hopped off the couch to answer it and was met with none other than Amy Rose and Cream the Rabbit, both in yellow raincoats.
"Hiya Rouge." Amy chirped.
"Hello Ms. Rouge." Cream addressed respectfully while bowing her head a little.
"Oh my goodness, you guys are soaked! Come on in." Rouge motioned with her hand and the two females stepped inside.
"Let me get your coats." Rouge asked politely. Amy and Cream both pulled off their coats and Rouge hung them up on an oak wood coat rack. Amy, Cream and Rouge both proceeded to the white couches in front of the TV. Amy looked over at Amber and shrieked.
"W-W-What's she doing here?" Amy quivered.
Rouge gave Amy a questioning look and widened her eyes.
"Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh, that's right, you got knocked out by that boulder when she teleported us."
Amy scoffed. "Don't remind me."
"Well don't you worry, Amber had a little change of heart."
Amy faced her. "Oh, I'm sorry."
Amber shrugged. "No problem."
Amy continued while lowering her head a little. "I'm just sorry you never saw Shadow."
"Somebody call me?" A deep voice spoke.
Everyone whirled around to face Shadow in the doorway of the living room. He was soaked from head to toe and was stroking his quills. A blue towel surrounded his waist and he had discarded his gloves, sleeves, socks, and air shoes. Small dropelets of water ran down his body and on to the floor.
Rouge gasped slightly and her face grew hot. Sure, she had seen Shadow like this plenty of times but now that his fur clung to his tan skin, you could see every powerful muscle in the dark hedgehog's body. The bat turned away to hide her rose face.
The dark hedgehog faced her and Rouge looked back, regaining her face's heat.
Amy's eyes got even bigger and he fainted. Cream took no notice to this and continued to look at Shadow.
"Is it really you mister Shadow?"
Shadow smirked. "The one and only."
By now Amy had begun to stir and her eyes slowly fluttered open. They shot open when laying eyes upon Shadow.
"Is it really you?"
Shadow sighed. "Yes Rose hedgehog."
"But how… I thought he… didn't you die?"
Shadow scowled. "I suppose so."
"Then how are you back?"
"Yeah Shadow." Sonic cut in. "We never did figure out why you and Eclipse are back."
Amy gasped. "That white hedgehog is back too?"
"So why are you back Shadow?" Knuckles asked.
"Does it really matter?" Rouge cut in.
"Yes it does." Knuckles retorted and turned to Shadow again.
Shadow sighed and sat down, making a small water mark on the couch.
" Well, I think that when I used my Chaos Nova and killed both me and Eclipse…"
Rouge winced at that remark.
"…I overloaded the Chaos Emeralds with the Chaos power in my bodyand according to Sonic, they shattered."
"But how are you back?" Tail asked.
"Well, when they shattered, I was shattered. When they were destroyed, I was destroyed. So when they were reformed, I reformed."
"But how?" Cream asked.
"I believe certain people have special bonds to the Chaos Emeralds. This includes Eclipse, Amber, Sonic, Knuckles, and I. I don't know about the rest of you."
"Hmmmmm, strange." Rouge whispered.
Shadowsat there for a while in deep thought along with everyon else. After a few minutes, he got off the couch and disappeared into his room upstairs, shutting the door. The rest of the group relaxed again and turned their attention towards the TV.
Once Shadow was in his room, he removed the towel from his waist, throwing in a hamperand sat on his bed. The hedgehog pulled his socks and shoes on. Afterwards, he pulled his sleeves and gloves on and one of his rings.
"Where is the other one?" Shadow murmured. That's when it hit him.
The group was waiting patiently for Shadow's return when he appeared in a flash of silver light. His Hyper powered body was emmitting a powerful light upon the group.
"Shadow, did ya beat him?" Sonic asked.
Shadow shook his head.
"Why?" Knuckles asked.
"I still could not generate enough power to destroy him."
"Shadow, there has to be a way." Amy said.
"Well, there is one attack I could use. It would surely wipe him out."
"Then why didn't you use it yet?" Tails asked innocently.
"The cost is very high and I wanted to say goodbye first."
Everyone's eyes widened.
"Shadow, what do you mean?" Rouge stammered.
Instead of answering the question, Shadow floated over to her.
He then lifted his super powered hand and caressed the beautiful bat's cheek with the back of his hand.
"I wanted to thank you Rouge."
"For what Shadow?"
"For showing me a love I have not seen for 50 years." Shadow smiled while speaking. And not just a smirk of pride, but a smile of true happiness.
"Shadow what are you talking about?" Rouge asked.
Shadow lowered his hand to his arm and removed one of his golden bracelets. He opened Rouge's hand and laid it in the palm of her hand softly closing her hand. He then floated away from her and faced the entire group.
"I would also like to thank the rest of you. Thank you for giving me friendship. Something I have not had in 50 years…."
Everyone's eyes widened and Rouge had tears in her eyes. "Shadow w-what are you"-
At that moment Shadow disappeared with Chaos Control.
Rouge stuck out her hand while tears flew from her eyes.
Shadow looked around his blank, gray room for a second. Only a bed, a dresser, a lamp, and a window with a stormy and rainy picture withinin sight.
"Yes, Rouge has it. Hmm, she might as well keep it seeing I gave it to her and she isapperently still wearing it."
Shadow tightened his gloves around his fists and walked out of his room.