*Editor's Note - I do not own any of the TMNT Characters, yada yada yada, all the legal stuff. I DID create a few more characters extremely necessary for the story - but if you really want 'em, have at it.

Donatello couldn't remember ever feeling so angry before. Leaving at that exact moment had been absolutely necessary, or it may have come to physical blows with Leonardo and Raphael. He'd never struck one of his brothers out of anger before, so he simply stormed out of the den into their underground world. He furiously turned his cell phone off, and ignored his motor bike. He needed to burn off some steam. Most of the time when they got on him like that, he'd simply retreat to sanctuary in the Lab, but today they'd pushed him way over the edge with their needling.

He walked for a long time in silence, only the faint sound of the overhead traffic accompanying him. Mike wouldn't be happy with him for running out without a word, but he didn't want to think about it right now. He was so caught up in his own thoughts that he was hardly aware of the passing time, or the miles he was logging on foot. It was nearly evening by the time he realized he'd been gone for almost three hours. He would need to call home and check in with Splinter soon - and Mike would be wondering where he'd gone.

As he passed under another tunnel, he suddenly realized he'd crossed well inside Central Park territory. He stopped under a grating, catching sight of the painted sky, alive with colors of a vibrant sunset. He stood stock-still, listening carefully for a few moments. When he was sure he didn't hear anything, he pried up the grating and hoisted himself up onto the pavement.

It was different to be able to see the "free world" in the light of the setting sun, rather than the darkness of midnight. Fall had always been his favorite season, and he often regretted getting to see so little of Central Park in the daylight. He decided he would just hunker down for a few minutes and enjoy the remainder of it- then he would get in contact with Splinter. He settled behind an outcropping of rocks, and sighed deeply to relax. Donatello remained that way for awhile, simply listening to the wind and staring mutely into the sky above him.

The sound of an approaching car interrupted his relaxed state, and he immediately jolted to attention. He flattened down behind the rocks, inwardly cursing himself for taking the chance of being seen. On the other side the vehicle had screeched to a stop, and Donatello heard doors slamming angrily. It sounded like several people had gotten out at the same time.

"That's it - we finish now, we finish HERE! " One of them thundered. "We've pushed our luck as it is! " His accent was clearly foreign, and strange to Donnie's ears. It sounded...Australian?

"I STILL say we could get more from this by keeping her alive for a couple of days." Another argued.

Now they really had his attention. Staying low to the ground, he inched closer to try for a hidden glance of who was out there. Raising his head cautiously, he saw four men arguing in the road. A fifth was standing slightly to the side, heavy hand on a the sixth figure. From first glance he could tell it was a woman, he guessed a young one. Long jet black hair hung loosely over her shoulders, a seething look filling her icy cold blue eyes. Her wrists were lashed tightly behind her back, and she had been gagged firmly to keep her quiet.

Something about the look of her told Donatello she had not come quietly. He had a difficult decision to make now, rather quickly. It would have been much easier if his brothers had been there, and if he hadn't already noticed that ALL of these strange men were packing. He took quick stock of the supply on his person - his phone would do no good now, they would never reach him in time. He had his bo, a long knife, and he also had two smoke grenades. It would have to be enough.

Pulling his cloak tighter to conceal his appearance as best as he could, he crept closer to the van. The argument was continuing, and the man holding onto the girl was merely watching in silent amusement. Donatello swallowed hard, summoning his courage. Using all the stealth his ninja training could afford he came up behind the guard, sweeping the unsuspecting man off his feet with his bo before he even realized what was happening to him.

He seized the girl by the arm as the argument suddenly ended, and curses rang out. She fought him considerably as he shoved her behind the van, and gunfire erupted. He cut the thongs on her wrists with a decisive swipe of his knife and quickly got her attention again. "I'm trying to help you - quit fighting me!" He said shortly.

The men weren't about to let him walk off with her. They raced around the side to meet them, weapons raised threateningly.

"Stay with me unless I go down - if that happens, then run for all you're worth..." He said under his breath to the girl. Quickly he released one of the smoke grenades in their direction, instantly pushed her in front of him, and started running. Gunfire erupted through the smoke, and he kept himself squarely behind her to shield her as he guided her back to the grating. Something sharp struck him in the side, but he ignored it and kept going a few feet. As he turned to hurl his second smoke grenade he heard rapid gunfire again, and had a shocking pain in his left shoulder. Knowing immediately that he'd been shot, he threw the grenade, and staggered forward to the grating.

Gritting his teeth against the pain, he pulled the grating up, and quickly lowered the teenager down into it. He leaped down into the darkness somewhat dizzily, and grunted with effort as he pulled the cover back down. He had absolutely no intention of taking her anywhere near their den - but he had to get her away from Central Park.

"Trust me?" He gasped, and she nodded. Head swimming strangely, he guided her quickly away from the opening into the safety of the darkness, refusing to stop until the tunnel around him was literally spinning, and he nearly lost his footing.

"Okay," He said breathlessly, "I have to stop."

"You saved my life! " She spoke for the first time, her voice carrying the same accent as the men. "Are you hurt? "

"Yes," He said under severe duress. "But there's...something you should know. I'm not what you think I am."

She instantly pulled back his cloak, and then stared at him in stunned amazement for a few seconds, before focusing on his badly bleeding shoulder. "You took a bullet for me - I don't care what you are " She took off her jacket and started using it to apply gradual pressure as he sank to the ground. "Where are we?" She asked softly.

"Underground. I thought you might need to hide."

She noticed him tremble, and encouraged him to lay back completely. "That's an understatement. Those men are terrorists - they would have killed me. Thank you."

He mumbled something indiscernible, wondering why his mind felt so cloudy all of the sudden. Was he passing out? As the young woman started to cover him with his own cloak, her hand hit the opposite end of a dart. Carefully she pried it loose from his side, looking at it in the beam of his flashlight.

"Oh no...are you dizzy?" She asked suddenly.

"Yeah...what...what is that?"

"It's a tranquilizer bit."

"A what?" He said anxiously, sounding more upset than he had about getting shot.

Trying to keep him calm, she pressed him down lightly. "It's a sedative - they used one on me earlier. It isn't deadly."

"For you..." He said pointedly. "I'm different. I can't..." He broke off, clearly having trouble focusing, hand suddenly struggling with his watch. "My brothers..." He mumbled softly. "They'll come." He finished, and slumped to the ground completely unconscious. The young woman bent over him anxiously to see if he was breathing, and applied stronger pressure to the bleeding. Tears uncontrolled were rising - the only thing she was sure of NOW was that she couldn't leave him.