Chapter Six

April O' Neil had made an escape, but it was not a well-planned one. Afterwards, looking back at the whole scenario, she wondered where her head was. Surely he could have gone after her, and then she would have been in great trouble. She had darted off into the dark; with the one hope that just the dark would give her an advantage, and save her. She knew it was one of the craziest things she had ever done, and perhaps she just simply owed it to luck that she had gotten out of it. She remembered how surprised she was, once she looked back over her shoulder that no one was behind her.

Now she was safe at home, in her bedroom-she laid sprawled on the bed, not dressed for bedtime, but still in her "princess" dress. She twirled her masquerade mask between her painted fingers, as she thought of the evening's events.

What in the world just happened? What did I do?

She went over every detail that happened that Halloween night, from following the "imposter Turtle" to being saved by Shredder, (and had he really meant to save her, or did he just follow them to the alley, because he was fooled into thinking he was a real Turtle as well?) to…that last moment with him. She found herself wondering what would have happened, if instead of implanting the kiss on his mouth plate, if she had gently removed the mask, and kissed him….

No! She could not think like that. All she had been through, with the Turtles….

As if on cue, she heard Donatello's voice, along with a loud rap at her door: "Hey April! You in there? Trick or treat!"

April had not been ready that night to tell the guys what happened. She knew she would someday, but she did not know how to bring it up. It turned out that none of the Turtles could find Shredder on that Halloween night.

"He probably knew that the Turtle's where in the house, and decided not to pull anything," Raphael had said.

April decided to put the whole thing out of her mind, or at least try, and concentrate on her work…

It was late November, and there was unusually fair weather for the city, when the Turtles had their next encounter with the Shredder.

April had gotten word that there was a "big going-on" with the Turtles at a warehouse, on the east side of town, and as usual, April's boss expected her to be there, and report. It had been a very slow month, and finally, there seemed to be action with the Turtles!

April and her camera crew had gotten there late-and upon entering the warehouse, her eyes immediately began to tear….

"April, it's tear gas!" April heard Michelangelo shout his warning, and she backed out, rubbing her eyes.

"Guys..?" she wheezed, trying to clear her senses. It had happened so fast, where the Turtles okay?

As if to answer her own question, each Turtle came out of the warehouse entrance, one by one, each holding a green hand over his eyes.

"Guys! Are you all right?" April asked in panic.

"Yeah," coughed Donatello, "But Shredder got away…"

"It was Shredder?" April swallowed.

"Yeah."

"Well, come on guys, he could not have gotten far!" Leonardo, who recovered the quickest out of all them, signaled to the others to follow him.

The Turtles had just took off, when April saw him. He had come around from the side of the building, where he had escaped the tear gas. April stared, frozen…

He looked her in the eyes, and her into his. She remembered well what his eyes looked like, that night came back to her, and she was for sure he would recognize her eyes…

"He knows," April said to herself. "He knows now it was me."

Before April could react, Shredder had grabbed April. She let out a yelp of pain, as her crew cowered, also frozen in fear….

"The perfect bait for some Turtles…" Shredder said, seemingly just to April. She finally came to, and struggled against her captor.

"Help!" She screamed. Shredder began to drag her off, as she was kicking and twisting…

"Stop!" she pleaded to him, and at that moment, he looked down at her, and she up to him, as she still fought. What seemed to be determination in his eyes, seemed to slowly change to…confusion? Or was it realization? Shredder stopped, and April stopped as well. He stared at his captive…

It was at that moment the Turtles had came back.

It was Raphael, who, despite still being affected by the tear gas, was able to take down Shredder with one appointed side-kick to Shredder's shoulder, careful to avoid hitting April. (Of which he would brag about for months to come.)

The other Turtles where on Shredder at once, while April's crew rushed to console her. April brushed her yellow jumpsuit off a bit, insisting that she was fine, and then bravely went to where the Turtles where, holding down Shredder. It seemed at last they had him. The cameraman behind April at once began rolling. She did not report on the incident, she insisted she was too shaken up by being grabbed by Shredder to go on camera.

"We finally got him," April heard someone say, but she was in such a blur, she did not know who it was.

A little later, Donatello approached her.

"Hey, April, you're being awfully quiet tonight-are you okay?"

"Yes," she smiled at him. "I'll be okay. I just need a little time to think about some things. But really, I'm fine."

"Uh-okay. Well, hey, you know, there's a costume party in downtown tonight-the guys and I where thinking about going, because where it's at is right next to the new pizza shop, so afterwards…"

"Oh, thanks, Don," April stopped him before he could finish. "But I don't think I feel like attending any costume parties for awhile. It's a long story."

"Oh-okay. Well, I have time." Donatello looked at April, puzzled.

"Um-"

"Yeah, April, what's the story? I want to hear it too." April looked behind her, Leonardo and the rest of the Turtles where joining them.

"Yeah, lets hear the story," chimed in Michelangelo.

Before April could answer, Donatello came out with his own idea.

"Hey, I know-why don't we all go out for pizza first, and April can tell us her story, and then we'll all decide whether or not to skip the costume party tonight." He elbowed April in the side, playfully.

" And after all, we can't all forget how cute you looked dressed up as a princess on Halloween."

April and the guys all laughed.

"Okay, guys-I'll tell you my story."

And the entire group, Turtles and one young woman, went off into the night to have pizza, and to listen to April's story.

"They are never going to believe me," April thought to herself.