Sonic Adventure 2: The Alternate Ending
By One-Winged Angel 666
"Shadow," said a familiar voice. "Shadow, wake up!"
As I slowly opened my eyes, to my surprise I was lying on the ground facing my deceased friend, Maria. As I sat up, I discovered that I was still in the Space Colony ARK. "Maria," I said, "either you've been resurrected, or I've ended up like you."
"No, silly," said Maria. "I'm still dead. I've been watching you, you know. You've done so much damage to humanity, stealing a Chaos Emerald, threatening to destroy the world with the Eclipse Cannon. That was out of character for someone like yourself. I'm glad someone like that group of forest animals led by your speedy, blue look-a-like defeated you in battle and redeemed you. And in turn, you've fulfilled my promise of a safe, peaceful world!"
"I did," I said, "haven't I? I owe it all to Sonic the Hedgehog and his friends for setting me straight."
"And now," said Maria, "I have one last favor for you before we leave each other."
"And that is," I asked.
"I want you," said Maria, "to forget about me, forget about your past, my tragic death, everything that happened fifty years ago. Instead, focus on today, and the forest animal friends you made that redeemed you and helped you fulfill my promise."
"Forget about you," I asked shockingly. "I could never forget about you! We're friends, and even if you're dead, our friendship won't go to the same grave you're in!"
"But if you don't forget me and instead focus on Sonic and his friends," Maria said, "you'll be haunted by your failure to protect me. I died to protect you instead, so that (a) I wouldn't be a burden to you, and (b) so you can fulfill mine and grandpa's wish of a peaceful world, even if grandpa threatened to destroy the world after the GUN army captured you and killed me. It's time you forgot about me, because what you lack in me, you have new friends, friends who would do anything to protect, and depend upon, you."
"You poor fool," I said, as I then thought to myself. Maria wasn't lying. It was too late for her fifty years ago, and it's still too late now. If I ever have any hope of finding true happiness, I need to abandon my memories of Maria and her sacrifice, and move on to new friends, including Sonic and his gang. Otherwise I'll be sad and angsty for the rest of my life. I had no other choice, as I stood on my two feet and said, "Fine. I'll forget about you and focus on whomever else I can protect. If it'll make the both of us happy, then I'll do it."
"That's the Shadow I know and love," said Maria as she and I smiled and laughed with each other.
As we stopped laughing, I then heard another familiar voice saying, "Shadow? Shadow, wake up!"
Maria and our surroundings then disappeared into darkness, as I slowly opened my eyes and, to my surprise, discovered Sonic, Tails the fox, Knuckles the echidna, Amy the hedgehog, Dr. Eggman, Cream the rabbit and her chao, Cheese, and Rouge the bat, looking down upon me. I slowly sat up, as Amy, Cream, Rouge, and Tails hugged me tightly out of relief.
"Oh, Shadow," said Amy.
"We thought you and Sonic were going to die," said Rouge.
"Right," I said, as Sonic's four friends released me from their hug.
"Say Shadow," said Sonic, "do you remember anything after I rescued you from falling into the Earth's atmosphere?"
"You," I said to Sonic, "rescued me? After our final battle with the Bio Lizard, aka the prototype version of me, when it merged with the Eclipse Cannon?"
"So you do remember," said Knuckles.
"Of course I have you ridiculous egg-laying mammal," I said.
"Hey," said Knuckles.
"It's true, Knuckles," said Rouge. "You maybe ridiculous, but you are our egg-laying mammal nonetheless."
"Eggman and I were on the verge of destroying the world with the Eclipse Cannon," I said, "until Sonic bested me in battle, while the rest of you guys were fighting Eggman." I then looked at Eggman and discovered that he was tied around a rope. "Speaking of you, Eggman, I thought you'd redeem yourself after the way you helped us return the ARK to orbit."
"We still don't trust him," said Knuckles. "He still has that nasty desire to kill Sonic and the rest of us."
"It's true," said Eggman, "I still have that obsession to eliminate you forest woodland freaks and rule the world, but I vow that the next time we meet, I'll grow more powerful to defeat you all!"
"Even though that vow is usually broken and you end up defeated by us anyway," asked Sonic.
"Curse you," said Eggman angrily.
"Right," I said. "After that, Eggman's grandfather, Gerald, who created me to be Earth's newest super-hero, attempted to crash the ARK into the Earth, killing half its population just as some excuse to avenge Maria's death. Then the seven of us teamed up with Eggman to utilize the Chaos Emeralds in bringing the ARK back to orbit, while fighting off the prototype me, the Bio Lizard."
"And then," said Tails, "you ran out of power and nearly fell into the Earth's atmosphere after you and Sonic won."
"I had to use up my remaining Chaos power," said Sonic, "to save you before you could crash and burn, and then bring you back here to safety."
I was silent for the moment, thinking to myself. Were those forest animals fools? I threatened to kill them and destroy the world, and yet they choose to redeem and befriend me anyway. Perhaps Maria was right, I do need to forget her and focus on whomever else I can protect, including my six new friends. After all, they redeemed me, and Sonic nearly sacrificed his life and remaining energy to save me, because that's what friends would do: Protect and redeem each other.
"Shadow," said Cream, "why are you silent?"
I then faced Sonic and his friends, smiled, and said, "I used to have a friend named Maria, whom in my dreams told me to forget her and befriend you guys, as a token of gratitude for helping me fix the damage Eggman and I created. It's time I forgot my past and focused on protecting, and depending on, you guys instead, otherwise I'll never find true happiness."
"Then I welcome you to our gang of heroes," said Sonic. "Come on, let's imprison Eggman on Earth, then come to Cream and her mother Vanilla's house to celebrate our victory."
"Thank you, Sonic," I said, as Sonic, his friends, Eggman, and I walked out the door. I was thankful to be alive, and most of all, I was twice as thankful for having someone like Sonic and his forest animal friends -- my new friends -- redeeming me.