A/N: An acrostic is a poem, or in this case, a series of drabbles, in which the first letter of each line makes up a word. Drabbles Forever will consist of a series of acrostic drabble sets as follows:

Drabbles of Leo: Leonardo; Drabbles Collide: Raphael; Drabbles from the Underground: Donatello; The Unconvincing Turtle Drabbles: Michelangelo; Search for Drabbles: Splinter; and finally Drabbles and Dragons: Hamato.

Huge thanks to Melody Winters, Diva Danielle, Polaris'05 and DuckiePray for your support, encouragement and epic beta-reading awesomeness. You gals rock my world, always.

I'd like to dedicate this first series to a friend who has provided a flicker of light in my life and brightened my days more than I can say. hugs Lauren. This one's for you.

Welcome to the first installment of the Drabbles Forever series: Drabbles of Leo

He is the Leader. Emotional. Obstinate. like Nitrogen to his family, Always there in times of need, modeling Rectitude and Drive. He is Opaque to danger that might threaten. He is Hamato Leonardo.

Drabbles of Leo

Chapter 1 Leader: Splinter


Today is the day. My boys pass their fourteenth year; from the day I discovered them. By the code of Bushido, today they become men.

They stand before me, awaiting the ceremony. Donatello is quiet, passive. No doubt he wishes to be elsewhere, tinkering with something mechanical in the small room he has chosen for his workshop.

Michelangelo squirms. It is difficult for him, the youngest of my sons, to be still for any length of time. Rarely does he take anything seriously. When he was awarded his first real side-arm, a short blade, at five years of age, he promptly lost it in the couch cushions. That a real knife can cut when one is careless was a painful lesson, one he has not forgotten. Raphael still has a small scar on his right side, just at the base of his bridge, where the tip penetrated.

Raphael… Ah, my passionate son. I see the flash of boredom and resentment in your eyes as the ceremony begins. I know you are unhappy, my son, but I have thought long and hard about this decision. I will set Leonardo apart, and I fear the close friendship you have so far enjoyed with your brother may be strained. I know the choice must be made. The Clan needs a Leader, one who can guide with a clear head, who can make decisions to the betterment of the family. Such a leader needs a strong pillar, someone to hold him accountable, to balance him. You, my son, will be that balance. You will keep Leonardo on a right path.

Leonardo. Today, you and your brothers step into adulthood as you receive your weapons. You, my son, receive something more, as I hand you your first set of true blades. These are no bokkan, wooden swords dulled for practice. These are steel, sharp and deadly.

Today you become a man. Today, I lay upon your brothers the mantle of adulthood. Today you receive something more; the heaviest burden a parent can place upon his child.

Today, you become the Leader.