When Donny met Anya
Description: Carl Jung said it best: The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.
Disclaimer:TMNT is not my property. This story is not intended for profit just fun. I apologize now for any bad grammar and poor spelling that my spellchecker missed.
Chapter 1: Misery Loves Company
Donatello walked through the city during the early morning hours. It had just recently snowed making the sidewalks wet and slick. Don's mind was not on the cold that was seeping into his shell and bones until he turned a corner and was hit head-on with an artic blast of wind and snow. He was glad he convinced Leo to spend the money on boots and flannel-lined snowsuits when they had to patrol on nights like this night. But, he grunted, he had forgotten them in his hurry to get away from his family. He cursed the cold. He cursed himself for being careless.
His mind was on Leonardo. His mind began to replay the event that took place only hours ago but felt like days. Splinter and Leo had entered the lair together, each with a look of determination. They called everyone into the living room. If it had been an after-school special, this would be the part when it was announced that someone was dying of some disease. A lesson would be learned and everyone would live happily ever after.
But, instead, Leo had just announced that he was going on a training mission WITH Splinter's blessing. He was leaving in two days for Central America, of all places. And, if that wasn't enough, they announced that Donatello would be the leader in Leo's absence. Oh yeah, that went over well with Raph. Surprisingly, before Raph had a chance to react, Don remembered standing up. The look on Raph's face when Don told Leo, "You're an asshole, Leo. You're going on a vacation leaving me as leader because you need to go cry." He grabbed his trench coat and hat, leaving the lair despite the calls from Mikey and Splinter.
Donatello sighed, shrugging his shoulders, fisting his hands deeper into his trench coat. He didn't know the first thing about being a leader. He didn't even like to fight. He was an engineer not a warrior, a fact that he had told his family on numerous occasions. How could Splinter go along with this absurdity? Raphael would be a better leader than him. He remembered the shocked looks of his family when he stormed out of the lair again, not waiting for Leonardo to finish his speech about the benefits of his leadership training.
Donatello moved down the subway stairs, thankful that no one was there. He paced back and forth still frustrated with Leo and himself. He was just…annoyed with life. Nothing was going well. His brothers had always guessed that he had a crush on their young friend April. Donatello, at one time, thought a relationship with her was possible. But, lately, all April wanted to talk about was Casey's inability to grow up. She wanted to get married, have kids and still work on her archeological endeavors. At first, Don was thrilled that April would share her most personal thoughts with only him. He was very wrong. It just made him feel more and more inadequate. April's hopes and dreams became Don's fears and nightmares.
There were nights when he refused to sleep because horrible dreams plagued him. His dream was always the same. April and him were a couple. April becomes pregnant. Then, some alien-like creature rips her open, looks at him smiling, with razor sharp teeth, saying, "Dadda." He always awoke sweating and screaming. He knew that they had some form of human DNA, thanks to Casey's offering a sample of his blood. This led Don to believe that the boy who dropped them into the ooze may have cut himself, mixing his blood and the ooze together, causing Splinter and his brothers to mutant into humanoid creatures. If only he could find that boy to run a DNA test to confirm his theory. Either way, their DNA was similar to human DNA, meaning his reoccurring nightmare could be a reality. So, the nightmares continue.
Don's attention was diverted to the subway stairs when a young woman slowly moved down with her hand over her mouth. Don looked at his shell cell to see it was 2:35am. 'What was she doing out so late…and alone?'
The women watched Don for a moment, assessing the danger level, Don assumed. He appeared to not be a threat, because the woman turned to the other track, sniffling. Don turned his head, watching the woman pull a tissue out of her hobo bag. A sob escaped her lips. She appeared to be in her late twenties, long brown wavy hair that was frizzy from the previous storm. Don couldn't see her face but was sure if he did her eyes would be red and puffy from crying. Her body was covered in a large trench coat but outlined her hourglass shape. The women sobbed again. Her body swayed with emotion.
Don's heart went out to the woman. He could only imagine what was making this woman so upset. Did someone die? Did someone break her heart? Did someone tell her she was the leader while her eldest brother went off to who knows where…oh wait, that was him. Don grunted annoyed. Where was the freakin' train?
Don's mind wandered again to Leo. What was going through his brother's mind when he decided he needed to take this trip? And, in two days, he would be gone. The thought of telling Raph to do something made Don's stomach turn in a not-so-nice way. Don's thoughts were again distracted when the woman sat down on the steps, obviously annoyed with the train's delay. Don could see now that this was a young woman. She was pretty, he thought. Her heart shaped face was framed with frizzy curls. As he assumed, her blue eyes were red and puffy. She was still sniffling, wiping her nose on the same tissue. "I guess the train is not coming."
Don turned his head to see the woman looking right at him. He moved his body, making sure his trench coat and fedora covered him well. "Yep. Seems that way." He lifted his eyes just to see the woman's reaction. She was still sitting on the steps, with her eyes closed, wiping her nose.
Don turned slightly. He licked his suddenly dried lips. "Uh, you ok?" Don knew it was wrong to get involved with her. He should have bolted the moment she started talking to him. But, right now, he didn't care. Leo didn't seem to care what happened to their family, so why should he…at least for tonight.
"No. I'm having a crappy month." She stood, wiping the dirt off her backside. She dragged her bag towards Don. "A month. One thing after another. What's your story?"
Don shrugged. "My brother is leaving for a…retreat."
Her eyebrows came together, confused. "Retreat? Religious?"
Don laughed. "No. He says he needs to find himself and he can't do that within the continental United States."
The woman smiled. "Sounds like he needs therapy not a vacation."
Don turned quickly to the woman, startling her. He opened his arms wide. "Exactly. Why does he have to go anywhere? We have friends. He could go live with them for a week or so if he needs to find himself. He doesn't have to go anywhere for years to find who he is. I know who he is. He's my brother, my friend, and my leader. Why can't he see that I love him and don't want him to go? I'm afraid of what will happen if he goes away. What will happen to our family when the glue that is Leo is not there?" Don stopped his rant when he realized the woman was no longer looking at him. She was looking at his exposed hands, fear written all over her face.
Don turned away from her. "Um, it's a birth defect."
The woman seemed to react a little. "Birth Defect? What the hell causes green skin?" She was backing up, clutching her bag like a life raft. Don knew this would happen. He knew she would scream. He lifted his head up so he was sure the woman would see his face and said. "A envious gene."
She didn't get the joke. But, he didn't expect her to in the beginning. The woman gasped, dropping her bag, spilling the contents onto the platform. "You're not human."
Don had to laugh. "I'm sorry. I don't mean to laugh. It's just been that kind of day." He moved slowly towards her, crouching down to collect the spilled items. The woman had moved to the first steps.
She cleared her throat. "What are you doing?"
Don picked up her cell phone, placing it into her bag. "I'm helping you pick up your items. It's my fault you dropped them."
The woman sat down, clinging to the railing. Her eyes were tearing up again. Don took a discarded bottle of hand sanitizer and gently tossed it to her. "You don't want to know what's on that railing. I suggest you use some of that stuff and move away from it."
She complied and moved down the steps but moving away from Don. Don sighed. "Would it help if I told you I'm not going to hurt you?"
Don laughed. "Ok." He replaced the last of the items into the bag, zipping it shut. He extended his hand, holding the bag, to her. The woman moved forward enough to snatch the bag away and clutch it to her chest. "I'm really not going to hurt you."
"What are you?"
Don smiled, taking off his hat, rewarded with another gasp and the bag being dropped to the ground. Thankfully, Don had closed it and the contents remained in place. "I am a mutant turtle."
The woman swallowed loudly. "Mutant reptile. Like Godzilla?"
Don's eye went wide. He never had compared himself to Godzilla but maybe she had a point. "I, I never thought of it like that, but yeah, kinda like Godzilla with a better vocabulary." Don moved forward, extending his hand. "I'm Don."
The woman looked at Don's hand like it was acid. Don was about to take his hand back when the woman slowly took it. "I'm Anya."
Don shook her hand, grinning. "Nice to meet you Anya." He took his hand back, replacing his hat and his hands back into his pockets. "Well, I need to get home."
Anya frowned. "Home. You said your brother is leaving. Why is he leaving?"
Don shrugged. "He…he thinks that he needs to become a better leader. He's going on some self-directing mission in Central America. He left me in charge. I don't know how to be a leader. I'm the gadget guy. I'm Mr. Fix-It. I can't lead."
Anya retrieved her bag, clinging to it. "Did you tell him?"
Don came out of his trace. "Who?"
"Your brother. Did you tell him how uncomfortable you fill in this role?" Her eyes went wide. "Oh my god. There are more of you. Is your brother a turtle too?"
Don winced, cursing his big mouth. "Yes, Leo is a turtle too. And, to answer your first question, No. I kinda stormed out when he made the announcement." Don scratched his head embarrassed. "What about you? What's your story?"
Anya sighed. "It's a long story. One that I don't wish to burden you with when it seems that for a mutant you have a lot more problems on your plate. Well, that was a dumb thing to say. I have no idea what you could be going through your head right now. I've never been a mutant turtle or known one…until now."
Don laughed. "You got that right." Against his better judgment, Don asked. "Listen. There is an all night diner two blocks from here. We could go get some coffee. We could…talk. Vent our problems on each other. Then, at dawn, we can walk away and never see each other again. I think I need to talk to someone who isn't connected to me in any way. A new perspective. Plus, I can't afford therapy."
Anya chuckled. "Me either." She looked up the stairs, thinking. She turned back to Don. "Okay." She pointed a finger in his direction. "I swear if you try to eat me, touch me, whatever mutant turtles do to humans, I'll kick your ass."
Don lifted his hands, defensively. "Sorry, I only eat pizza."
Anya shook her head. "Let's go before I realize I've completely lost my mind and entered the Twilight Zone."
They walked side-by-side in silence to the diner. Don smiled as he watched Anya eyeing him suspiciously. She must really be desperate for companionship if she was going to sit and talk to him until dawn.
They entered the diner and sat near the back, away from the two other customers. Anya took off her coat and stirred her coffee. Don did not take his hat or coat off. He was watching the two other customers and the waitress to make sure, if he had to, he could get out of this situation.
Anya smiled. "Now, look who's nervous?"
Don smirked. "You would be in my situation."
Anya sipped her coffee. "Maybe."
Don, now satisfied that there were no immediate threats, turned his attention to Anya. The first thing that he noticed was her outfit. She was wearing scrubs. "So, are you a doctor?"
Anya laughed. "Close. A nurse. Over at Manhattan General."
Don smiled. "I'm sorta the medic among my brothers. It's a tough job but someone needs to know something about first aid."
Anya's eyes lit up. "I could help you. I teach a basic first aid class every
Don laughed. "Thanks, but I'm beyond basic. " He sipped his coffee. "So, I
blurted out my problems already. What issues do you need to unload tonight?"
Anya's face became red with anger. " It's easier if I show you." She took out a note and handed it to Don. He opened it and winced at the contents. It was short.
Congratulations. I know you will make a great mom. I hope you find the father.
Don handed the note back to Anya. She grunted, "Asshole. That's what he is. Some resident I met last year. I thought our relationship was going great. I was even ready to ask him to move in with me. Then, his residency finishes and he gets transferred to California. He dumps me as I'm driving him to the airport. The bastard actually dumped me in my own car while I was using my gas to take his ass to the airport. Two weeks later, I'm pregnant. He won't take my calls. And, after ten e-mails and letters to the hospital where he was working, he sends me this back, "she waves the note. "A note with no return address."
Anya shook her head. She fanned her flushed face with the note. "Why? You didn't knock me up."
Don blushed, making Anya chuckle. Don cleared his throat. "Are you, are you going to keep the baby?"
Anya sighed. "Yes. I can't punish this baby because its father is an asshole."
Don smiled. "You've said that."
Anya punched the table. "And, I'll say it again. Walter's an asshole." She scratched her head. "I don't know how's it going to work but I'll figure it out."
He cleared his throat. "It will be ok Anya."
Anya looked at him. "How do you know?"
Don shrugged. "I don't know. Isn't that what you are supposed to say to comfort people?"
Anya smiled. "It is. It does help if you mean it."
Don nodded once. "I mean it. I think it will be hard and sometimes we will want to give up, but, in the end…it will be ok."
Anya sipped her coffee. "Who would of thought that a mutant turtle would be my guardian angel tonight. It's been nice." It had been nice. Anya wiped her tears away, looking outside the window then back at Don. There was a moment of awkward silence before Anya spoke. "So, is Don short for something?"
Don smiled. "Donatello."
"Donatello? Are you Italian?"
Don laughed. "No. A turtle."
Anya waved her hand up and down. "How?"
Don sighed. "Sit back. It's a long story." Don proceeded to tell Anya the long story of four turtles, a rat and some green ooze.
Hours later, she looked at Don, sadly. "You must have had a very lonely life."
Don shook his head. "Not really. I've always had my brothers and father. We do have human friends but…we're not about to put ourselves out there. Too many enemies, not enough friends."
Anya was twirling her spoon in her coffee cup, thinking. Without looking up she asked, "Then, why did you talk to me? For all you knew, I could have been some crazy woman with a gun."
Don shrugged. "You were there, I guess. You came into my life at the right moment when I needed someone to talk to…so, I took a chance."
"Do you regret it?"
"Depends. Are you going to turn me over to some lab?"
Anya grinned. "Is there a reward?" Don's face fell, anxious. Anya laughed. "Oh the look on your face. Don, I'm kidding. No, I wouldn't turn you in. You were there at the right time for me too. I guess the old mantra is true: misery loves company."
Don lifted his coffee mug. "I'll drink to that." They clicked mugs and downed the rest of their coffee.
Anya sighed. "That…was my last cup of coffee for a long time."
Don raised an eyebrow ridge. "Huh?"
Anya pointed to her flat stomach. "Babies usually don't take kindly to caffeine."
Don laughed. "Poor you."
Anya playfully punched Don's arm. "It's not nice to tease a pregnant woman." She twirled her hands over her head, crossing her eyes. "We go all crazy."
Don let out a loud laugh. "I'll remember that." He looked outside. "The sun is coming up." The night sky was lightening to early morning reds and yellows. He looked at Anya, smiling. "I guess…this is it."
Anya pursed her lips, nodding. "I guess so."
They paid the check and left the diner. Don and Anya stood next to each other, adjusting their coats, delaying the inevitable. It was Don who spoke first. "Well, I better get home."
Anya nodded. "Yep. See ya." She waved and started to move down the street.
Don turned in the opposite direction, beginning to walk away when Anya's yell, caused him to turn back just in time to see Anya running up to him just stopping before she ran into him. "Would you like to do this again, sometime?"
Don looked up at the diner then back at Anya. It had been liberating talking to someone who was not involved with his family. It was fun. They were kindred spirits. Friends created out of the worst life had to offer. Against his better judgment, Don said, "Yes."
Anya smiled. "Next month. 8pm." He extended her hand to him.
Don nodded, taking her hand. "See you in a month."
Anya waved and headed down the street. Don, with newfound hope, smiled and headed home. He turned once to watch her walk away. Even though the logical side of his brain said he would never see her again, the rest of him had hope. He continued to walk home with a smile on his face.