Disclaimer: NONE OF IT IS MINE! WOE IS… wait, no that's good. o.O
Warning: Violence, some language, a bit of gore, mild smexing (sort of?)
Note: This is only my second completed TMNT related fanfic. Don't kill me!!! ; And, er, it's TURTLE-SLASH. So if you don't like such things, please do not read… or if you do read, then don't complain to me if you find it distasteful.
The digital clock sitting atop a heinously cluttered nightstand at the head of a quietly occupied bed read eight past eleven. Each number emitted a dim glow, long past their youth and treacherous in their blatant admission the device was ready for retirement. Despite this, they had kept their vigil that night; illuminating the shaded room as much as they could – or as much as they dared.
Silence reigned with an iron fist in this room, punctured only by the shakiest of breaths and the occasional rustling of sweat-soaked sheets. These sounds were permissible, and grounded in a long alliance between the master of the room and solitude's many facets. It would reign for as long as necessary, and break like the tides when moment proper deemed it should be so. For now it squeezed upon the hum of machinery, strangling it, and doused all noise but that originating from flesh and blood.
Words had not been uttered for forty-five minutes. Darkness descended upon the occupants with furious indignation, viciously smothering the voice of the pained questioner and promising black consequences for the recipient should he choose to respond. Shadow clasped them both in cold fists, hissing and thrusting its will upon them: there would be silence, or there would be Hell to pay. Finality lurked in the corner with infinite patience. They all knew the score.
Credit must be accorded when appropriate, praise for the agonized strong. Pain could not easily find a voice, despite the crusted lacerations, bruises and broken bones that congregated within and upon the prone body. Agony desired a voice yet could only achieve the briefest moments of freedom to release a choked whimper or tearful moan. A throat unused to releasing its own pain tightened its grip, glistening eyes fixated on the pair hovering over them.
He had hands gentle enough to tend and comfort a frightened kitten, yet rarely did he use them in such a way. Nor did he often feel inclined to; on rare occasions and only for certain individuals would those hands deny themselves harsh impact and the stain of blood. They drifted softly across beaten flesh, eerie in their tenderness, spectacular in the terrible shift of their purpose and bringing with them a whisper of answer.
It was his eyes that spoke most loudly, deep hazel in the darkness. They crackled with black flames tipped in finest silver, strange shapes capering in the smoke that arose in mysterious trails in an elaborate, interpretive dance. His thumb trailed across swollen lips to brush lovingly over an olive cheek while the other rubbed comforting circles over a swollen, pinprick hole in the exposed right shoulder. Perspective shifted as his head canted just a little to the right. The clock now read nine minutes past eleven, and the darkness shifted into a more comfortable position.
Memory savaged him mercilessly; impressions of past moments forcefully inserting themselves over what was before him in the here and now. Ghostly hands stroked his sides, clasped his buttocks to pull him closer as the flesh of memory burned with the heat of maddened passion and lust. Breath mixing together in steamy clouds, droplets of sweat licked up by a hot tongue that eagerly and willingly worked magic upon his body. Before his eyes he saw in bizarrely random order the varying expressions the other's face would take on mid-coitus, how his tongue would slide across his lips in response to a possessive growl and how gray eyes would drop to half-mast at the moment of ecstasy.
Like summer rain these visions of the past fell before him, affirming the true nature of things. A swift pulse against his, thundering hearts creating a holy chorus that rises above and beyond whatever condemnation may yet strike and a comfort he could never find again should ever it be lost. For him, there was no coming back. There was no 'new', or settling for second choices.
There was only flushed cheeks and shy puzzlement in gray eyes when they locked on him, a peculiar, self-conscious amazement at his attention. Only pursed lips and downcast eyes that danced just a little selfishly when he casually dismissed advances by grateful and ignorant females, and the hot, gasping declarations spat out amidst a wretched tangle later on.
In secret, at night, during the day when boldness took him, there was only a quick mind and self-deprecating soul. A diffident youth who could not fathom his interest, could not see what he saw, and for all the intelligence simply could not understand the simplicity of his reasoning.
Memory faded but did not vanish, and he looked down upon his brother with flaming coals in the pits of his eyes. He smiled without humour, tracing first the lines of his jaw and then the crusted gashes on his face; the only evidence other than memory now of the savage beast he had become earlier that evening. Not three hours previous, when the Foot had accosted them. The screams of the humans had ricocheted violently across the rooftops only seconds after he became aware that one of his own had fallen.
Oh, the bloodshed. Crows were no doubt picking at the intestines of several ninja, whose bellies had had the unfortunate and unexpected close encounter with his savage and unrelenting blood fury. He smote them without heart, tearing from them the life they sought to tear from his brother; they brought to life the monster that slept in the deepest recesses of his soul, inciting it to unconquerable madness. They wrote and signed their own death warrants, their horror at the realization a picture he would hold close to him for all eternity.
Karai's losses were total. Eighteen Foot ninja dead or the equivalent of human vegetables; those who lived would never have full use of any of their limbs again. Or, for accuracy's sake – those who lived, who still had their limbs.
Shame for his actions could not be dredged up. He did not even attempt to make an effort to do so. There was absolutely no regret in his soul for the lives he took or the ones he destroyed; the pained eyes gazing up into his washed any such feelings away. The wounds glaring balefully at him from olive skin shrieked for further justice, yet he would not; gray eyes could turn against him if he went back to do so. Enough justice had been served, for now.
The question remained, lingering perpetually between them even as the clock registered ten past eleven and the shadows twisted loftily in the deepest corners of the room. In the silence he could hear the erratic efforts of a strained heart pounding within its cell, a monstrous butterfly desperately fighting to escape – though whether it was his own heart, or his brother's he was unable to tell. Caressing a sweaty brow with kitten-tender fingers, his mouth tightened with further humourless amusement.
This one never ceased to astound him. He reveled for a moment in the knowledge that he finally understood something the other did not; how simple this very thing was, in essence, and how his brother could not seem to wrap his mind around it. An idiot such as himself could grasp the meaning, yet the strained face below waited, waited, to be invited in to partake of the knowledge his elder was privy to.
It was such a ridiculous question. Many questions had graced his ears in the short time he had spent among the living, all sixteen years, yet none had ever seemed as stupid – especially from this brother. Personal bias, perhaps, was the culprit; he had considered it occasionally the times he himself had pondered the question… long before the first move had been made. Yet the answer had come, on a night very much like this one despite its lack of bearing such oppressive darkness on its shoulders. And their roles had been reversed.
He could sense something dark on the horizon, a sort of indiscernible monstrosity that nevertheless had been present since the battle that evening. It hung ominous in the corners and from the ceiling, dripping black threats upon his shoulders and clustering its tendrils about the prone form of his companion. Stroking the twisted brow with a growing possessiveness and fear, he wondered at the sense of expectancy; and he wondered at the sense of there being anything there at all other than himself.
A shuddering breath brought him quickly from his reverie to brush a gentle kiss across thin lips, flaming eyes locking with that of his brother's. Glistening gray met sweltering hazel as gruff words broke the long silence. The darkness leaped.
"'Cause," Raphael said, "I'm not dumb, Donnie."
The clock read eleven past eleven.
And the flow of blood from the internal injuries Donatello sustained previously finally ebbed, his body's desperate efforts bearing the fruit of life.
ALTERNATE ENDING: (For fun, heheh)
"'Cause," Raphael said, "I'm not dumb, Donnie."
A thin, clawed hand rose from a cascade of oblivion to wave dismissively in the direction of the two young mutants. In that instant, Donatello's body – which had been miserably failing in its attempts to patch itself up and was preparing for the final countdown – miraculously found itself with reinforcements.
The countdown ended before it had even begun.
Death elegantly took his leave of the room, taking the darkness with him. He had spent far too much time waiting for the purple-clad turtle to kick it (despite that he had patience in spades, all the way to infinity) and the backlog was getting out of hand.
The paperwork on those turtles was going to be a bitch.
11:11 (From Wikipedia):
Numerologists believe that events linked to the time 11:11 appear more often than chance or coincidence. This belief is related to the concept of synchronicity. Other authors believe it is an auspicious sign, and others that it signals a spirit presence.
Well, it's not exactly rocket science
More a rule of thumb
I'll tell you why I love you
I'm not dumb
-- Spider Robinson, 'Simple Explanation'
And the incarnation of DEATH used herein belongs to Terry Pratchett.