Summary: The title is a summary!
Characters: Leo and Don, with some Mikey, Raph and Splinter
Author's Note: So the title is incredibly long, but it's all I could come up with. :) This is one of my first attempts at writing from Leo's point of view, and I'm not sure how it came out. I dedicate this story to Amaronith because a couple months ago she had a bad day and I said "I should write her a happy fic!" Instead I wrote a crackfic crossover. And it took me two months. Um... Sorry?
Donatello and Leonardo Trapped in an Elevator During the End of the World.
Or Maybe Just the End of New York, It's Hard to Tell With the Lights Out.
Leo grabbed the duffel bag from Mikey and slung it over his shoulder. It banged against his shell and the strap dug into his shoulder. "You've got thirty seconds," he snapped. "You and Raph take Sensei to the surface – I'll grab Donnie and we'll be up right behind you."
His younger brother groaned theatrically, but didn't slow down. He was packing the rest of the canned goods into cardboard boxes. Knowing Mikey, Leo suspected that when they made it topside and started unpacking, they'd find most of their supply of junk food shoved in there as well. "Donnie!"
"He's in the lab." Raphael was waiting by the elevator. He'd already taken their weapons and the medical supplies up to the warehouse where the Battle Shell and his bike were stored. Splinter stood at his side, wrapped in a cloak.
Of course he was. "Get Master Splinter topside. Mikey!"
"Coming, coming!" Michelangelo tossed a box to Raphael, who grunted heavily as he caught it against his chest. "I gotta get-"
"I took Klunk up with the medical supplies," Raphael cut him off. "Where the hell is Donnie?"
"Get topside!" Leo unslung the duffel bag and dropped it in the elevator. "I'll bring Donnie and follow you. Go now!" He didn't wait to see them leave, just turned and began to slog his way through the thigh-deep floodwater toward the lab.
The lights were flickering; the electricity had held out longer than they'd thought it would. Which was fortunate because Donnie had disassembled the generator and sent it topside already. Leo gripped the wall and pushed himself against the water. "Donatello! We are leaving without you!" It was bullshit, of course, but it might make Donnie haul a little shell. "What in the world is taking you so long?"
The lab was dim – When the flood waters had first started seeping into the lair through the ventilation shafts, Don had unplugged everything non-essential, including his computers - except for the pale blue-green light from a single computer screen. One of Don's laptops, running on batteries, sitting on a shelf safely out of the water for at least a few more minutes. Don was on the other side of the lab, a penlight held securely in his teeth as he packed supplies into a duffel.
Leo hesitated beside the laptop, eyeing the screen. It showed a map of the world, landmasses in green, the oceans in blue, and three massive yellow, orange and red spirals descending from the north. "This is that superstorm you were talking about?"
A grunt was the only answer Don spared him. Leo pulled his eyes away from the screen and snapped the laptop shut. "We're taking this with us, I assume?" Most, if not all of Don's computers would be ruined by the flooding. Hopefully he'd saved his back-up hard drives, or he'd be unbearable to live with for weeks.
With the laptop shut, the only light was the bright beam from Don's flashlight. Leo splashed across the lab, stumbling on a half-dozen different things stacked on the floor before he reached his brother's side. "We're leaving now," he said.
Don settled the duffel bag across his back, the strap crossing his chest at an angle. "All right," he said, gripping the light in one hand, grabbing Leo's arm with the other. "Leo-"
"Tell me when we're topside," Leo said. He didn't like the tone of Don's voice, the way it dropped slightly. That was the tone Don used when something was wrong and he really, really needed them to shut up and listen. But Leo couldn't right now. They couldn't stay where they were. Whatever disaster was coming their way, they'd have to face it topside.
His brother nodded, acknowledging Leonardo's order. He didn't let go of Leo's arm though, just adjusted his grip and started moving, leading the way through the lair. The lights were flickering on and off and Leo found himself holding his breath when they flickered and stayed off for several seconds. Don had one of the generators hooked up topside just in case this happened – Raph knew how to get it started, so there was no chance they were going to be stranded down there. Yet Leo couldn't help hissing through his teeth when the lights flashed back on.
The elevator was waiting for them, Splinter and their brothers nowhere to be seen. Leo pushed Don into the elevator ahead of him, water from the lair flowing in as the doors opened. "Up," Leo said under his breath. "Up, up."
Leo looked at his brother incredulously. "If you say one word about going back for a computer-"
"Listen. Feel that?"
Leo hesitated. He could feel the ice cold water numbing his legs; the laptop clutched in his arms was still slightly warm from having been on all day; Donnie's hand still gripped his forearm with bruising intensity. Beneath that, he felt something begin to shake. A tremor that grew into a rumble.
"Earthquake?" Leo asked, his voice hushed.
The ground shook, the lights went out. And the elevator dropped.
Water burned in Leo's lungs, his airways protesting the intrusion, and he gagged, choking even as he flailed for purchase in the water.
His head dropped under the surface and he panicked briefly, still half-unconscious, until he could get his feet under him and stand, braced with one hand against the wall. He coughed up water until his stomach heaved, and then he leaned against the wall, his forehead braced against his arm while he tried to get his breath back.
He blinked away the droplets of water that ran into his eyes and tried to look around, but it was pitch black. "Earthquake," he rasped. "Hey, Don, remember when no one thought New York City got-" he paused, his head snapping up almost of its own volition. "Donnie?" he called.
No answer, but he wasn't expecting one. If he'd been knocked out, then maybe Donnie had too. He licked his lips and knelt, the water lapping at the top of his plastron, and spread his hands out in either direction. He concentrated on sound, listening to the lap of water against his shell and the walls of the elevator, the small splashing sounds he made as he swept his arms through the water. And to his left, soft, steady breathing.
His hand brushed over Donatello's knee and Leo let out a short breath of relief. "There you are," he said, moving to his brother's side. The water was almost to Donatello's mouth, so Leo slipped a hand under Donnie's chin and tipped his head back. "Wake up," he ordered. He was using his command voice, which his brothers generally responded to quickly – if not always happily. Donatello twitched slightly, his head moving side to side slowly, but didn't wake. Leo grimaced. "You need to wake up now, little brother."
Donnie stirred and groaned, a long breathy exhalation that made Leo wince in sympathy. "Got a little banged up there, bro."
"Leo?" Donnie fumbled in the water, jerking slightly as he realized how close it was to his face. Leo let go of Don's chin and gripped his shoulder instead. "S'dark?"
"The lights are out," Leo explained. He remembered the flashlight Donnie had held earlier, but there was no sign of it beneath the water. "Can you stand?"
Don just kind of grunted and accepted the hand Leo offered him. He stood, a little shaky beneath Leo's hand, and braced his shell against the wall of the elevator with a soft thud. "We stopped."
"Yeah. When the quake hit, I figure." Leo blinked against the darkness and tried to stop himself from squinting. "Knocked what was left of the power out, too." He almost said something about Raph up above with the generator, but bit his tongue instead. He had no idea what happened to their brothers and father up above. He reached for his shell cell at his belt and flipped it open. "No service. Figures."
"I don't think it was an earthquake," Donatello said. "I was running simulations before we left, on the storm system up north."
"You're telling me a thunderstorm did this?" Leo caught himself before he gestured at the darkness around them – the gesture would have been lost when his brother was as blind as he was.
"This isn't exactly a normal thunderstorm, Leo." Donnie sounded a little more steady, and Leo risked letting go of his shoulder. "I think what just hit us was a wind-driven storm surge."
"Uh-huh," Leo said. "And that is?"
"Basically a tsunami. Probably at least thirty feet tall – I'd guess higher, based on the way the storm's been gathering strength over the last two days."
"A tidal wave." Leo's tongue felt heavy in his mouth. "Master Splinter and the others. They were up there."
"That's what you were trying to tell me before we left." He'd known that tone of voice, knew it meant Donnie needed him to listen, but he'd brushed it off.
"There's not anything either one of us could have done about it," Donatello said flatly.
"All right." Leo shook himself off. "Okay, we need to get out of this elevator, for starters. If Raph's conscious-" and alive "-topside then he'll get the generator working, unless it was wrecked in the surge. But until the power comes back on, we need to start working our way topside." He planted his hands on his hips and focused his gaze in Don's direction. "Brilliant ideas?"
"We can not go down." It wasn't even a suggestion, the way Donnie said it. "The lair was already flooding when we left, only the Lantean design kept us from being flooded out days ago. With the surge dumping even more water on top of the city, there's no way the lair is going to come through. We go down and we're just going to drown."
"So we go up." That was the direction Leo wanted to go anyway. Up was where the rest of their family was.
"There's a good chance that topside is going to be flooded, too." Donnie swallowed and drew in a steadying breath. Leo resisted the urge to check him for a concussion; there was nothing to be done for it anyway. "The sewers have been flooding for days, by this morning the backed up rainwater was already bubbling back up onto the streets. That means that all this water that just got dumped on us has nowhere to go."
"So half the city could be underwater." Leo tried not to think of April in her second-story apartment, Casey's third-floor flat, Angel in her grandmother's townhouse.
"Several feet of water, at least."
"Okay. So this isn't going to be easy." Leo forced a grin into his voice for Donnie's sake. "We're used to that. Come on. Lay your plan on me."
Don's fingers curled around Leo's wrist and tugged. Leo followed Don's lead, moving slowly to the right, the water lapping against the bottom of Leo's shell. Don laid Leo's hand against the wall of the elevator a few feet away, and Leo spread his fingers out, feeling the rungs of a thin metal ladder. "The maintenance hatch?"
"I don't need power to get it open. But the second I open it, this elevator is going to flood, and we'll have to make the rest of the way to the surface without air or light."
Leo bit his lip and tried to think how long it would take to get topside by hand and foot. He added a couple minutes because they'd be struggling against the water, then subtracted a couple minutes because the lack of air would certainly have them moving at a frantic pace. "It's a straight shot up, right? We just follow the elevator shaft until we get to the warehouse?"
"Once we're topside, the doors will be easy to pry open. But depending on how bad the storm surge was, the warehouse itself may be submerged as well."
Leo blew a slow breath out through his teeth. "All right."
They couldn't stay where they were. The water was already a half-inch or so higher than when Leo had first stood. They could drown here waiting for rescue, or they could drown out there, trying to escape.
"It's going to get cold," he said.
"Yeah." Donnie sounded resigned, worried. But he knew they couldn't stay there just as much as Leo did.
Being cold-blooded had its downsides and this was going to be one of them. Leo wasn't sure how much the bitter-cold water would affect them once they were covered in it, but he didn't think it was going to make the climb up any easier. "All right. Give me your belt."
"My-?" Donnie stuttered a little, but handed Leo the thin leather belt a second later. Leo took his own and tied the two together, making a long cord. He tugged on it fiercely, making sure the knots weren't going to come loose. He caught Donnie's right arm and carefully tied one end of the cord around his brother's wrist, knotting it securely. "Too tight?"
Leo tied the other end around his own wrist. "All right. If the whole tunnel is submerged, we should be able to swim straight up. So that's what we do. Straight up, no stopping. If you get trapped or think we're going the wrong way, yank on the cord. Got it?"
Leo paused long enough to press his palm flat against the back of Donnie's neck and grip him gently. "Don't you get lost in the dark, bro."
Donnie tugged slightly on the cord; Leo felt it pull against his wrist. "I won't."
Leo listened in the dark as Don climbed up the ladder. "Get up here with me," his brother ordered. "We're going to have to wait until the elevator fills with water before we try to exit."
"Just tell me when you open it." Leo pulled himself up until he could grip Donnie's ankle, the swung himself to the side and climbed a few more rungs, his feet sideways on the ladder. He rapped his knuckles against Donnie's shell. "I'm here. When you're ready, Don."
He heard Don exhale once, sharp and nervous. "I'm opening it," his brother warned him.
The hatch opened upward, out into the flooded shaft, so Don could only push it up so far, the force of the water fighting him as it spilled down into the elevator, drenching them both and filling what little sanctuary they'd had. Leo ducked his head against Don's shell as the freezing cold water cascaded down onto his neck and shoulders, fighting back a shiver and dragging in deep, even breaths.
"Get ready." Don sounded tense; Leo was lower on the ladder, he'd be forced to hold his breath for several seconds longer than Donnie. "We're almost there."
Leo patted Donnie's leg, then tipped his head back, gulping in several deep breaths before the water rose over his head.
He knew exactly how long he could hold his breath under water – long enough to terrify Sensei the first time he'd taken them topside and let them splash around in one of the little ponds in Central Park, long enough that April had jumped into the river up at the farmhouse because she thought Mikey must be drowning when really he was just poking around at rocks on the bottom of the riverbed. A lot longer than the humans could, but possibly not long enough to get to safety.
He felt the movement in the water still around him as the elevator filled and the water no longer poured in from above. Donnie moved, his foot brushing against Leo's hand as he pulled himself through the hatch, and Leo followed as closely as he dared.
He cleared the top of the elevator and kicked off against the metal roof, pushing himself upwards. The water swirled slightly around him from the force of Donatello's movement, and Leo just followed behind. There was no light, no sense of up and down. If they got turned around they were as good as dead.
Don't you get lost in the dark, Leo thought fiercely at the little brother moving somewhere in the water above him. You're the only one I know is okay. Don't get lost on me. He pushed himself a little harder against the water; Donnie was a faster swimmer than he was, though Leo had him beat for stamina. But right now, speed mattered, and Leo would be damned if he held Donnie back when every second counted.
The water was bitterly cold. Leo could feel his muscles already protesting and knew it was only a matter of time before his response time slipped and he started growing sluggish. Donnie was more susceptible to the cold – Leo would have to pay attention, make sure he didn't pass his brother in the dark.
They didn't have more than a hundred and fifty feet to go, straight up. That was assuming they were still near the bottom of the shaft, but they'd been moving for several seconds before the storm surge struck them. Unless the elevator dropped. In which case –
No point dwelling on it now. Leo grit his teeth and pushed harder. Don was still above him; Leo could feel the water swirling slightly in the wake of his brother's kicks. They had nowhere to go except up.
Then the cord pulled at his wrist in one short, hard yank.
Leo swallowed the shout that crawled up his throat and gripped the cord, tugging back as he kicked himself further upward. There was no resistance at the end of the cord and Leo tugged harder, pulling the cord hand over hand toward him, his heart starting to pound against his plastron. Donnie.
The end of the cord slipped through his fingers sooner than it should have, the end uneven and jagged.
Leo lost a few seconds of precious air before he clenched his teeth. The cord had come down from above. Donnie had still been above him when the cord snapped – was cut? – so Leo just had to go up to find him. There was nowhere for Don to go in the shaft. All Leo had to do was keep his arms out, sweeping the shaft and he'd find Don.
He'd drown, if he went in circles up the shaft from wall to wall, but making it to the top without Don would be harder than drowning.
He needed to stop thinking about drowning and be calm. He kicked himself upwards, hands outstretched. He could still feel the water swirling around him – it wasn't the steady flow of a current. Someone was moving in the water with him.
Cold skin brushed his arm, and then hands were gripping his shoulders with almost brutal strength. Leo relaxed slightly as he recognized that three-fingered grip, but he felt along the arm nonetheless, until he could touch his brother's shell and know for sure it was Don. His brother didn't seem to be in distress; the cord must have caught on debris or a broken pipe.
Leo didn't bother retying it, he just planted both hands on the bottom of Donnie's shell and pushed his brother upwards. They'd lost too much air with that brief distraction.
It couldn't be much further. Leo's lungs were starting to protest and his heartbeat wasn't slowing down. If they weren't close to the top they were both in a lot of trouble.
He felt something small and furry against his fingers, too cold and still to be alive. A dead rat, caught in the shaft and drowned in the floodwaters. Leo batted it away and fought back a shudder. Sensei would be fine. He had Mikey and Raph, they would have pulled him to safety even if they had been caught under water. He and Donnie were the ones in real trouble.
Maybe he'd believe it if he just told himself so enough times.
He caught up with Donnie a moment later. His brother was moving slowly up the walls of the shaft and as Leo approached Don caught one of his arms and pushed Leo to the wall. The doors. Donnie thought they were close, but in the dark there was no way to know which side the doors were on.
Doors, doors, doors. His fingers brushed over smooth metal and he spread his palm flat, dragging his hand across the width of the doors until he found the crack in the center where they fit together. He reached behind him for Don, caught hold of his brother's mask and tugged to get his attention. Then he slid one of his katana free from its sheath and carefully wedged it into the sliver between the closed doors. He pushed down as hard as he could and the doors jerked open, sliding apart just enough from him to get his fingers in there and pull. The doors slid open and Leo flinched as a bright light caught him in the face. He threw one hand up to shield his eyes, even as he gripped the katana in defense.
The light moved away from his face but didn't go out, and Leo blinked spots out of his vision. Something moved in the water in front of him, large and dark against the dim light filtering through the water in the warehouse. Raph, Leo thought in relieved recognition, even before his hand was caught in a grip larger and stronger than his own and he was tugged out of the shaft into the warehouse.
Leo turned to grab Donnie, but Raph was tugging their younger brother out of the shaft already. Raph grinned at him, white-toothed and eerie in the water and Leo grinned back. They were alive.
Raph had a rope tied to his belt, and he looped it around Leo's wrist, then Donnie's, and then reached past Leo and gave the rope two fierce yanks.
A guideline, Leo realized, even as he felt pressure on the rope. Mike and Splinter were probably at the other end, ready to reel them in.
He swam, following the steady pressure on the rope, looking back to make sure the others were still bringing up the rear. He swept his gaze across the warehouse and felt a sudden sense of loss hit him. The Turtle Van, Raph's bike, most of Donnie's gear. The supplies they'd packed just that morning. Everything back down in the lair. They were effectively homeless. Again.
Then he glanced down, at Donnie who'd already made it this far, at Raph who'd come back for them. He felt the tug at his wrist as Mike and Splinter showed them the way to safety and he forced himself to move a little faster.
They were heading up and Leo frowned for a moment before he remembered the roof access at the back of the warehouse. Raph and Mike must have climbed out that way after the surge hit. If the roof was safe, then maybe the flooding wasn't as bad as Donnie had thought it might be.
At least he could see, he thought ruefully. The light in the warehouse was dim – Raph's flashlight below was doing more to light the way than the refracted daylight coming in through the broken windows – but it was light.
The roof access hatch was just ahead. Leo pulled his legs together in a powerful scissor kick and reached up. His hand broke free of the water just an instant before he grabbed the edge of the hatch and he pulled himself out of the water even as he dragged in his first breath.
The air was cold and felt like ice in his lungs but he pulled in another breath and another even as Mikey leaned down and grabbed his arms to help pull him the rest of the way.
Leo flopped off to the side, suddenly exhausted. Splinter propped him up against the edge of the roof and Leo offered his father a relieved smile while Klunk mewled impatiently at his side, demanding attention. Splinter looked like a drowned rat – a cold, drowned rat, but he was alive and didn't appear to be harmed. "My son," Splinter said, cupping Leo's face in one wet hand, then Mikey yelped and Raph was cursing behind them.
"What is it?" Leo tried to get his legs under him, but they didn't want to move. Mikey was on his back on the floor, with Don sprawled unmoving on top of him and Raph was pulling himself up out of the water with a dark look on his face.
"I think he passed out," Raph said. "Just as we got to the hatch. I had to push him up high enough for Mike to grab him."
"He hit his head." Leo grabbed at Splinter's hands, let his father take too much of his weight as he staggered toward the others. "He was unconscious for at least a few minutes."
"He's not breathing!" Mikey's panicked voice did what the cold and the water couldn't and Leo's chest clenched, his breath stuttering between his teeth.
Splinter's support vanished and Leo lunged the last foot or two separating him from the others, hitting the ground hard on his knees at Mikey's side. Their youngest brother had Don held from behind, his hand spread against Don's chest, and he was right, Leo realized with a sickening lurch. Donnie's chest wasn't moving.
"Oh, fuck this," Raph snarled. He grabbed at Don's shoulder and shook him. "Like hell you are giving up on us now, you little geek."
CPR was hard for them. Their mouths didn't fit together the way humans' did, and their plastrons made it almost impossible to do chest compressions without causing serious harm. Leo concentrated on dragging air into his suddenly burning lungs and clenched his fists. Mike never pressed hard enough for the chest compressions to work. "Mikey, hold him up. Raph, you'll have to breathe-"
Raph hauled off and slapped Don.
"Or you could hit him," Leo added.
Donnie woke up fighting, which was good for Leo's heart but bad for Raph's face. He got in a good shot as he pushed away from his attacker and nearly crawled backwards over Mikey before he realized where he was.
And he still wasn't breathing, Leo realized with a shock, when Don dragged in a desperate breath and promptly began to cough up half a lung. But no water, he saw. He hadn't swallowed any water. That was good. Pneumonia was very likely in their futures already – a massive infection from drinking sewer water was the last thing they needed.
"Thanks, Donnie," Raph griped, cupping his jaw. "You can pay my dentist bill."
"I am your dentist," Donnie said sourly. He was still more or less sprawled on top of Mikey, and he blinked down at his brother. Mikey beamed back. "So we made it?"
"We made it," Leo said. He was still on his knees and couldn't quite work up the energy to move. "For what that's worth."
"It is worth a great deal, my sons." Splinter patted Leo's shoulder.
Leo got his feet under him and stood unsteadily with Splinter's help. His skin felt brittle and his muscles ached in the cold air. They had to get to shelter somewhere. They couldn't stay out in this cold any longer.
But the city was gone. Water filled the streets and splashed against buildings. Leo glanced down at Laird Avenue and looked away quickly; bodies were starting to pile up against the walls of the warehouse.
"Now what?" Mikey asked.
There was the farmhouse up in Northampton, but they'd never survive the trip in this cold, not without supplies. They could try to find an abandoned building to hole up in, but Leo didn't like their chances of making it through the night. A hotel maybe, break in to an empty room, but the odds of discovery were too high.
"April's place isn't too far," he finally said. It wasn't close, either. But the water level didn't seem too high - if she'd been upstairs when the wave hit, she could be all right. "We can try to make our way by rooftop."
Raph had that look on his face that said he wanted to disagree, but couldn't. "If we're going to do this, we need to do it now. Sitting here ain't doing any of us any good."
Leo nodded. "Raph, lead the way. Try to stay out of sight as much as possible, but speed is of the essence. Mikey and Don, together. Master Splinter, with me."
Raphael had one foot on the edge of the roof, poised to make the leap to the Chinese laundry next door, when his shell cell chirped, loud and clear in the frozen air.
They all paused for a moment, and Raph glanced down at his belt with a look on his face like he didn't know what he was hearing. Leo knew how he felt.
Raphael reached for the cell but Michelangelo beat him to it, darting away from Donnie's side - and Leo opened his mouth to snap at Mike because Don still wasn't looking terribly steady - and grabbing Raph's shell cell right off his belt. Raphael growled and tried to grab it back but Mike danced back out of reach and flipped the cell open. "Casey!" he crowed, pumping his fists in the air. "Hellooooo," he drawled into the phone. "To whom do I have the pleasure?"
Leo could hear Casey cheering through the phone from four feet away.
Casey met them halfway to April's with an armful of blankets and a thermos of hot coffee. "There's no cops, no military, nada," Casey reported while Leo wrapped a hideously bright blue comforter with splashy yellow sunflowers around Donnie's shaking shoulders. "April figures we're not getting rescued anytime soon."
"Los Angeles," Donatello said.
Leo didn't like the way his teeth clacked together. He was feeling the cold deep in his flesh and Mikey and Raph were clutching their blankets around their shoulders. Splinter actually looked to be in the best shape of them all. Warm-bloodedness was looking really good at the moment.
"Yeah." Casey looked grim and more than a little uncertain. "Man, like, every National Guard unit ever was on their way to LA after the twisters hit."
"And it won't be easy for rescue to get into the city with all this water." Leo didn't look down at the street, he'd learned his lesson. Instead he held out his hand for the coffee thermos and pressed it on Don, who clutched it like a life preserver. "April's place is okay?"
"Her shop's wrecked for ever and ever," Casey said. "But the apartment's still there."
"Angel?" Mikey asked and Casey shook his head and shrugged.
Leatherhead, Leo thought. Sidney. The Professor and his friends out in the junkyard.
"We need to get moving again," he said instead.
April lunged for them as soon as Leo crawled through the window and flung her arms around his neck. "You're okay!"
Her apartment was warm and Leo felt the heat work its way under his skin. All of a sudden it was like he felt the cold for the first time and he couldn't fight back the way his body shook. April tightened her grip on him for a second, then dragged him away from the window. There was a fire blazing in her fireplace, blankets spread out on the floor around it.
He meant to tell her that Donnie had a concussion and that Splinter needed to dry off before he got sick. He meant to thank her for sending Casey with the blankets and to tell her how sorry he was about her shop.
He didn't get the chance. April pushed him down onto the couch and tugged the damp blanke off his shoulders. After that, Leo's pretty sure he fell asleep.
Leo woke up warm.
He was on April's couch, with Mike curled up against him, both of them buried under about a dozen blankets. Leo wormed a hand free - Mikey was like an octopus, he liked to grab at you when he slept - and pushed the blankets away just enough that he could peer out.
The room was dim. It had gotten dark outside at some point, but the fireplace was still going and lit the room enough for Leo to see Splinter curled up in a nest of blankets in the recliner beside the couch. He propped himself up a little and managed to peer over Mikey's shell. There was an air matress on the floor that hadn't been there when they arrived and he could see Raph sprawled beneath the blankets. There was a huddled ball beside him and Leo felt safe assuming it was Donnie, even if he couldn't see so much as the top of his brother's head from beneath the blankets.
There was movement to his left and he looked up. April leaned against the doorway to the kitchen and she held up a mug in silent invitation.
Leo surveyed his situation and decided that a mug of tea was well worth the effort of squirming out of Mikey's clutches.
April watched him wriggle free with a grin. "Leo the teddy," she teased him as she poured hot water into a mug. Leo accepted it gratefully and breathed in the scent of pepperment and green tea. April wasn't a tea drinker - she wasn't as bad as Donnie with the coffee addiction, but that wasn't saying much - but over the last year or two she had slowly acquired more than a few of their favorite brands. Mostly leftovers from when they had been living with her, but Leo couldn't help but notice that no matter how many times he shared a cup of tea with her the supply never ran out.
"Any news?" he asked, keeping his voice low.
April wrapped her hands around her mug and stared at the liquid within. The kitchen was dark - she had a candle flickering on the table between them, but that was the only light. The city outside was even darker - no emergency lights, no moon. It was as if they were the only ones left in a field of empty darkness.
"I got through to Robin a few hours ago," April said. "She's in New Mexico. Just started her new job. She says the government is evacuating them to Mexico."
"New Mexico?" Leo repeated, disbelief. "What's happening in New Mexico?"
April shrugged. "They're expecting things to get very cold, very soon."
Leo swallowed the urge to point out that it felt pretty cold to him already. "Is there any word of evacuation plans?"
"I don't know," April said calmly. "Not that it matters. It's not like we can just hop on a National Guard helicopter."
"You and Casey-"
"Aren't leaving without you. Stop being stupid." April smiled a little. "We'll figure something out. We have the fireplace. We have enough food to last us for a while. Everything else will take care of itself."
"Well, unless Donnie's superstorm wipes us all off the face of the earth."
"Well, then we really won't have to worry." April grinned, patted the back of his hand. "Drink your tea. Get some more sleep. Tomorrow we can plan. tonight just-" Her breath caught and she ducked her head. When she looked up again her eyes were tearing up. "Tonight I'm just glad we're all here."
Leo wrapped his hands around his mug of tea and remembered the feeling of the elevator dropping beneath his feet, of searching for Donatello in the dark, of fifteen long minutes when he thought his father, Raph and Mike might be dead.
"It's just water," he said. "Donnie can build us a boat."
April laughed long and loud enough to wake the others. Crowded around the table, watching Casey and April cuddle while Raph and Donnie wrestled over the instant coffee and listening to Mike plot how to cook quesadillas over open flame, Leo met Splinter's gaze and grinned.
Tomorrow he'd break the news to Don that he was building a boat. Tonight he was just glad they were all there.
c&c is always appreciated.