Iris- A Shadow Songfic

Shadow had to visit the ARK in one last hopeless effort to try to remember Maria Robotinik in a different light. He was tired of always remembering that cursed day, the day when G.U.N decided out of fear that he and his fellow experiments were 'too dangerous'. Maria knew that Shadow was created for a different purpose, and she believed it until the day of the G.U.N raid. All she did was save him from death, and as a reward she received a bullet to her back. The bullet which should have been for him killed his one and only friend that ever understood him, or even cared to. He only knew that, because those were the thoughts he was thinking as he was launched of that cursed place. There was no real memory to tie with those feelings.

Then the unexplainable happened. He could sense her there with him, at that moment, when tears streamed down his face and shattered on the cold floor.

And I'd give up forever to touch you

Cause I know that you feel me somehow

You're the closest to heaven that I'll ever be

And I don't want to go home right now

He wanted to touch her, to hug her, but all he could feel was the icy metal machines around him. One thing he could say, though, was that he was at peace when her spirit was there. He could have stood there for eternity, because feeling her presence was the best thing that had happened to him… in a while. If only he could die, get rid of the curse that allowed him to be immortal, and be with her forever.

And all I can taste is this moment
And all I can breathe is your life
Cause sooner or later it's over
I just don't want to miss you tonight

This feeling would disappear, Shadow knew it. He never wanted it to. He never wanted to go back down to Earth and deal with those pathetic humans. They weren't pathetic because they lacked strength, speed, or brains. They were pathetic because their souls were so selfish and uncaring. Maria was different. Her lack of physical or mental attributes is what made her so special. She loved him as a friend, even though he looked scary, because from her own experience, looks weren't everything. Even on the ARK, Shadow wanted that instinct to feel the good in others instilled in him. After her death and also after he got some of his memory straight, he wanted to be invisible. Since that was impossible, he had to settle for being a shadow. He was there, but never really acknowledged or appreciated, even after he saved the world. He liked it like that.

The ARK was disappearing, and his mind became blank. He could only feel her and his anger.

And I don't want the world to see me
Cause I don't think that they'd understand
When everything's made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

Shadow could never find that feeling of understanding in any of the humans. To tell the truth, he never tried. All he could remember was the blood soaked dress. If he ever did find someone who understood him, he knew that because of his immortality, he was doomed to experience death all over again. He could never allow that to happen again.

He walked down a passage, feeling that the spirit wanted him to move. It was familiar, somehow. He didn't really care because he wasn't focusing on that. He stood in front of an automatic door scarred with bullet holes. He realized where the phantom had led him.

"No, Maria, I won't go in," Shadow shouted to the invisible girl, "I don't want to even THINK about that!!"

"Shadow…" a voice said softly.


"Do it for me," it pleaded. Shadow heard her voice. It was as clear as day! How he had longed to hear her say his name. He longed to hear it again, even if it was from the grave.

"Maria…" he choked, starting to plead with his friend, "Why? Of all the things you could have asked me to do… of all the things you could have even suggested… you ask for the hardest thing in the world. You have done this twice! The last time we were in there, you asked for me to save the people on that planet, people I could care less about. Now, you ask for me to enter the place of my worst nightmare." Shadow collapsed on the floor, face in his hands. The soul that lingered there, trying to convince him to enter the room she breathed her last.

"If you do this for me, Shadow, I promise you will have a better future. I am sad when I see you walk the streets of Earth with a frown on your face. I knew a time when you were happy. You have kept your promise about helping them…" The invisible Maria now hesitated, but then continued, "But you have failed my request for you to be happy. Don't look at me like that… I understand why you are angry and sad. You need to understand for yourself. Please, Shadow, do it for me and my memory…" Her voice faded, and Shadow realized he was alone again.

And you can't fight the tears that ain't coming
Or the moment of truth in your lies
When everything seems like the movies
Yeah you bleed just to know your alive

"If I must…" muttered Shadow. He stood up and entered. It looked the same as it did fifty plus years ago, except some of the escape pods were gone, and on the floor… Shadow gasped. Those demons! G.U.N never cleaned up their mess, except for moving the bodies of the dead. The blood was still splattered on the floor and control panel. The blood sent him into rage, those memories he wanted to replace flared with such ferocity, that Shadow could not contain it. He kneeled and screamed. The echo bounced off the walls, making the noise seem louder. Shadow crawled to the spot where Maria stood when she made him promise to save the world… and be happy, also where she laid in death.

Shadow's eyes blurred and the tears rained on the floor, reawakening the blood. It got on his gloves, but he cared less. His anger was more then it ever was before. A red aura formed around him, and he let out another yell out of pure rage. He did a Chaos Blast, but never said the required words. He blasted everything in the room, making the metal on the floor near him red hot. He slammed his fist against the hot floor, causing a deep dent. The hedgehog never felt it. He let out another blast and slumped over. He was drained of energy. Waves of depression and hopelessness overcame him and he continued to cry, causing the floor to let out an angry sizzle.

He remembered everything. He knew why she understood him, why she was even on the ARK, why she loved the color blue, why she loved Earth. He remembered all the times they shared, playing tag on the spaceship, talking about the planet she wanted to visit and what it was like. He remembered, but he only became more miserable and irate.

"Maria, why?" he sobbed in anguish, "Why did they do this? You deserved to be happy. You almost had your disease beat. You almost made it to Earth. Why did that… that…" Shadow paused. He had no words with which he could describe his hatred, no, his loathing. He settled for the only word that was the lowest of the low for him, and he said like it was filth, "Human have to kill you?!"

"If you remember correctly, he didn't. I gave my life for you, Shadow. I could have obeyed him and stepped back, but that would have meant you would have died. I chose to pull the lever and send you to Earth because you would do more good then I ever could. I was correct. You saved the world. I could never have done that, no matter how kind or caring I was.

"As I look back, I realize that I have never lived, never loved more then in that moment. You were like a brother to me. If I had stepped back, I would have never forgiven myself. I would have lived, yes, but not truly have lived. I knew the price for living, and I paid it in full.

"Not only did I pay it in full, but I forgave. I forgave the moment the G.U.N soldier pulled the trigger. I forgave because God forgave me. I believe that is what is wrong with you. You never were good at forgiving," Maria giggled with remembrance. Music flowed from her laugh, "but I never got to teach you how, which was my mistake. If you let God help, he can help you eradicate the poison in your system, the poison that holds back your smile and your laughter from showing its full beauty. Remember, forgiving isn't forgetting, it's just letting go of the debt that is owed you. Here, take this," the invisible ghost gave him a black Bible with crimson lettering with his name inscribed with gold on it, "read Matthew, then maybe you will learn forgiveness." Maria then left her red and ebony 'brother' to figure out things himself.

I don't want the world to see me
Cause I don't think that they'd understand
When everything's made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

Shadow sat in silence, the floor now its normal hue. He never would have guessed that his trip here would solve his problems. He stared at the sacred book, feeling unworthy of such a gift, but then again, Maria had a habit of giving things that were of a high price. He often remembered how she would describe her God to him, but he was artificially created, so the multicolored one assumed he could not take part. If Maria had given him this from beyond the grave, then it obviously applied to him. Maria often said that he was a soul, just like everyone else. He was immortal, though. Well, he'd at least give this a shot, especially since she suggested it.

The hedgehog was also a little stunned. Every argument he had in his head about the forgiveness, she had answered. The longer Shadow sat, the more he realized just how right she was. His inability to cancel the debt was affecting more then his soul. It infected his mind, his habits, his personality, and anything else he was forgetting. It controlled him to the point where he could no longer control his face. Instead of a smile, he always looked like he wanted to kill the world, which he most certainly did a lot of the time. He had his feelings inside and an expression of nothingness on the outside. His feelings always casted the same… shadow… on his features. Shadows cannot portray emotions. They are dark castings of what is wanted to be said or felt, and at night, they are swallowed up and become part of the blackness. The worst part was, he never even knew. He had to be TOLD. His lies to himself did not work against Maria or God.

Shadow stood and walked towards the door that slid open when he neared it and never looked back, still with the Bible in his hand. He was more determined then ever to get his life out of the cycle of hurt it currently resided. He vowed to himself to break it and began forming a plan of how to do so. The doors shut behind him.

Maria's spirit stared after him. She was glad that God had sent her to help her friend. She also knew that there was no such thing as immortal. No matter what, people always seemed to be able to figure something out to get you out of the picture. God now needed to find someone for Shadow to lean on, because Maria was due in heaven. She knew God knew what he was doing, so she said a prayer for Shadow and disappeared.

I just want you to know who I am
I just want you to know who I am
I just want you to know who I am
I just want you to know who I am