"Pride and Love"

Written by: Toni F

Sonic and all related indica (c) SEGA, yadda yadda yadda....


This was a random idea that popped into my head. Once again it is taken place in my original Sonicverse, where Sonic is the prince of Mobodoon, and it takes elements from almost every other Sonicverse, though it focuses heavily on the games.

And on another note, I don't hate Cosmo, so please no flames after reading. Chris Thorndyke on the other hand.... *rubs hands together*


Where could he be? One moment there was word he was in Soleanna, the next spotted in Downunda. This was getting frustrating! How could he extract revenge if his target was constantly on the move? There had to be a way to catch up to the world's fastest hedgehog!

What's next on the list?

The young, vengeful doctor then decided to search the city Mobotropolis.

ooo

Meanwhile in Mobotropolis, on the rooftop of the highest class restaurant sat an orange two-tailed fox with a green seedarian, both now young adults, at a lone table, surrounded by a few waiters and a group of violinists.

"Wow, Tails, you really went all out," said Cosmo, "My favorite meal, my favorite music, all alone on the roof of such a classy restaurant. You shouldn't have."

"What can I say?" said Tails, "It's been two years since we started going out. I wanted to make it special."

"It has been special," Cosmo smiled, "Very special. But it must have cost a fortune."

Tails waved his hand. "Don't worry about it. I've got it more than covered." He held up a bill in the air towards one of the violinists, who took it and began playing a classical number.

"Oh I love this song!" said Cosmo.

Tails rose from his seat and offered a hand. "Care to dance?"

Cosmo blushed slightly as she took his hand, rose from her seat, and the two waltzed to the music. The waiters sighed as they watched the happy couple enjoy themselves. Young love was beautiful... but not as much as the tips they would be receiving tonight.

Tails' digital watch began to beep. "Whoop, almost time!"

"Time for what?"

"You'll see," Tails led Cosmo to the ledge of the roof to the beautiful view the Mobian Sea. The full moon sparkled in the water, reflecting off their bodies, illuminating the night. Momentarily, a few ships sailed out into the center, and began shooting off colorful fireworks into the sky, as was their routine every end of the month.

Cosmo watched in awe at the amazing spectacle. "Oh it's so beautiful!" she swooned, laying her head on Tails' shoulder. "Thank you so much, Tails. This night has been nothing but wonderful."

"It's not over yet."

Cosmo glanced up. "There's more?"

Tails turned to face the seedarian and took a hold of her hands. "Cosmo, I love you more than anything in the world. Words can't describe my feelings for you, except maybe that it would mean everything to me if you'll share the rest of your life with me."

Cosmo gasped as Tails dropped down to one knee and pulled out a velvet box, opening it to reveal a shiny diamond ring. "Cosmo Seederian, will you marry me?"

Cosmo's hands flew to her mouth, unable to speak. Tears formed in her eyes, and her smile grew wide. "Oh...! Oh Tails!" she sobbed, nodding her head, "Yes! Yes of course I'll marry you!"

Tails grinned widely as he stepped back up. He took the ring and slid it onto Cosmo's finger, and then wrapped his arms around her as they kissed. The waiters and violinists applauded loudly as the two embraced.

The sound of engines suddenly filled the air. Everyone looked up as the noise got louder, and through the clouds, a red metallic airship came through, hovering closer.

Cosmo blinked. "Tails, what do you have planned now?"

The fox narrowed his eyes. "This... isn't me."

ooo

"Oh ho ho ho ho!" the young doctor laughed, "Well, what do we have here? It may not be Sonic, but it'll do quite nicely!"

He grabbed a nearby mic from his control panel and spoke into it, his voice amplifying all through the ship. "Attention all squads! Surround the building! Nobody gets in or out! All troops focus on the roof! Move out!"

ooo

The aircraft lowered itself near the rooftop. Tails squinted as he got a better view of the ship. "No way..!" he said, "It couldn't be!"

"What is it, Tails?" asked Cosmo.

Tails responded by lifting her into his arms and taking off towards the sky. "I don't know, but we're not sticking around to find out!"

He almost made it out of the carrier's line of view, but from its sides, a green force field dropped around, completely surrounding the building, and cutting the two off. From the bottom of the ship, hatches began to open and red robots began to drop down. The robots had the same features as Dr Eggman's. Some had arms and legs, others just wings.

"Egg pawns? Flappers? How?" Tails exclaimed, landing before some of the Egg Flappers could surround him and Cosmo, "Eggman's gone! Who's running all this?"

"That would be me."

From the Egg Carrier, a platform lowered down, carrying a young man with it. Tails looked hard at the man, who bore a resemblance to Dr. Eggman, right down to the clothes, only he was much thinner and no mustache but spiky chestnut hair instead. "Who are you?"

The young man bowed. "A pleasure to meet your acquaintance, Tails is it?" he spoke, "I am Dr, Thorndyke, successor to the late and great Dr. Eggman."

The waiters and violinists began to panic, looking for a place to run, only to have Egg Pawns block their paths. Tails stood protectively in front of Cosmo. "What do you want with us?"

"Actually, it's not you I'm after," said Thorndyke, "It's your hero Sonic I want. Tell me, where is he?"

"How would I know?" Tails snarled, "He's always on the move! And besides, it's not like I follow him around twenty-four seven. I have a life of my own too, as you can see."

Thorndyke rubbed his chin. "Perhaps you have a point," he said, narrowing his sight on the two-tailed fox and his green girlfriend, "Very well. If I can't get to Sonic, I'll get him to come to me."

The doctor tapped his wristwatch, "Attention, all pawns on board," he spoke, "Set up dishes and align frequencies to interact with every satellite possible. We're about to make a world-wide broadcast."

Antennas and satellite dishes rose from the top of the Egg Carrier and adjusted their movements.

ooo

All across the world, television screens began to fizzle. Many people smacked and shook their televisions, but only got a picture of Dr. Thorndyke in the end. "Attention, all of Mobius!" he announced, "Do you know where I can find a blue hedgehog? If you happen to be one, then listen closely."

ooo

In Mobodoon, Tiara Boobowski-Hedgehog, Sonic's wife, watched the television closely as she bounced two baby hedgehogs in each arm. The front door burst open, and a blue hedgehog came screeching in. "Honey, I'm home!"

"SHH!" Tiara seethed, and pointed to the television, "It's for you."

Sonic glanced over at the TV, raising an eyebrow at the picture of the young man. "Who's this guy? And why's he dressed like Eggman?"

"Shut up!" said Tiara, "Just listen! He's looking for you!"

"I have your little friend..." the television then pointed to a picture of Tails, holding Cosmo, with a group of frightened waiters and violinists behind them. A laser gun was then pointed at the group. "If you know what's best for your his health as well as everyone else on this rooftop, you will hand yourself over to me so that I may avenge my master's death!"

The picture went back to Thorndyke's scowling face. "Chez Mobo, at the corner of 2300 and 2500 block in Mobotropolis! You have ten minutes. If you're not here in time, I will take away those important to you, like you did to me!"

The picture fizzled out. Tiara looked over to her husband, who narrowed his eyes. "Sheesh," he said, "If it's not Eggman, it's some loony wannabe."

"You're gonna go, right?"

"Of course! I'll be right back." Sonic sped out the door, "Save dinner for me!"

ooo

Everyone was deathly still as they had either guns or swords pointed at them. A waiter tried desperately to inch his way towards the exit, only to have an Egg Pawn draw its sword closer, putting him back in his spot.

Tails surveyed the scene closely. There were Egg Pawns and Flappers everywhere you turned, keeping everyone in place. There wasn't much to be done with Thorndyke in the center, either. There had to be a way to distract him somehow, maybe think of a way out then.

"What do you want with Sonic anyway?" Tails asked, hoping this would help.

Thorndyke scowled. "Haven't you been listening?" he said, "Sonic is the one responsible for Dr. Eggman's imprisonment in that horrid asylum, where he would later meet his demise. You think peace has been brought to the world? Think again! Eggman may be gone, but his legacy lives on in me!"

"But why Eggman?" asked Tails, slightly curious, "Of all people?"

Thorndyke's scowl slowly turned into a smirk. "You'd be surprised," he said, "But I didn't always follow Eggman's path. There was a time when I actually idolized who else but Sonic?"

He turned away, eyes closed as memories flowed back to his mind, "I was only twelve years old when I first saw him. Such a brave, young, cool, brash fellow. I wanted to be just like him! More importantly, I wanted to be his friend. That's all! But what did he do? Ignore me! Treated me like a pesky housefly! So I tried his other friends. What was their secret? How do I become Sonic's friend, I asked. What do I get? 'Join the club, kid. Everyone wants to be Sonic's friend...'"

It worked! He got him monologuing. Now he could use the distraction to think of a way to get out of here. He glanced around himself. Egg Pawns were everywhere, making sure no one moved an inch. A violinist scratched the back of his head, but the pawns watching him didn't seem to care. At least they were free to move their arms. But what good would that do?

Tails then glanced up at the Egg Carrier and the dishes and antennas that disrupted the television frequencies. Frequencies, that's it! Maybe he could divert the frequency waves of the Badniks, scrambling their programs! But how..? He then remembered his digital watch. Maybe he could mess around with the wires and send out a signal. It sounded a bit farfetched, but if anyone could do it, Tails could.

"And on top of that, everyone began accusing me of being gay for a hedgehog!"

Tails needed something small and sharp to adjust his watch with. "Psst," he quietly called to Cosmo and mouthed for her earring. She didn't quite understand until he began pointing at his own ear, then nodded and carefully took off one of her earrings with one hand and skillfully handed it over to Tails without anyone else's noticing. Tails then put both hands behind his back and blindly began rerouting the wires and digital chips in his watch.

"His friends were no help," Thorndyke continued, "Everyone thought I was going crazy. Sonic couldn't care less if I were alive. There was only one person left... You know that saying keep your friends close, but enemies closer? I figured who would know Sonic better than his own nemesis, Dr. Ivo Robotnik, AKA Dr. Eggman? Eggman convinced me that Sonic was a self-centered wind-bag, keeping only to himself and worrying only about his adventures more than his own friends. However, he didn't dismiss me. No. He took me under his wing. He made me feel appreciated. He cured me of my obsession with that damn hedgehog! He became more of a father than my real one did, who always left me behind to work! Eggman is the real hero. He made me the man I am today." Thorndyke clenched his teeth and shook his fist, "Which is why I vow to destroy Sonic for taking him away!"

He glared up at Tails, and began storming his direction. Tails got nervous, but continued to work. "And by that, I'll destroy those he loves! Let's see if his adventures and his ego are more important when I show him his little buddy's dead carcass!"

"No!" Cosmo cried, stopping Thorndyke in his tracks, "You're wrong! Eggman brainwashed you! Sonic isn't like that! He does care for his friends! He'd do anything to protect them! Eggman was a horrible person! Sonic's the real hero! Honest!"

Thorndyke sneered at her. "If that's so," he said, "Then it'll bring me greater pleasure to see the look on his face when I kill you all in front of him!"

"Do what you want with me, but let Cosmo and everyone else go!" shouted Tails.

"Eggman didn't get as far as he did by being a softie," snarled Thorndyke, "You..! His so-called best friend. The very thing I wanted, but you hogged all to yourself. I hope it was worth it, because once Sonic gets here, you're as good as dead as he is!"

Cosmo gasped. "Please, no!"

"Oh don't worry, sweetie, you'll be next."

"Keep away from her!" Tails spat.

Thorndyke looked over, noticing that through the ordeal, despite the threats on his and his girl's lives, Tails had his hands behind his back the whole time. "What are you doing..?"

"What's it to you?"

"Let me see your hands! NOW!"

Tails stepped back, but the sword of an Egg Pawn poked into his back, causing him to jump forward, revealing his detached watch. "What do you think you're doing?" cried Thorndyke, jumping forward to take it, "Give me that!"

"Stay back!" Tails shouted, struggling to keep working as Thorndyke grabbed his wrists. He went for the watch, but Tails had just made the final adjustment, sending a frequency signal to all the Badniks, short circuiting them and causing a few to even explode. As an added bonus, the force field even began to go down.

"Yes!" Tails cheered.

"No!" Thorndyke shouted, socking Tails in the face, causing the fox to topple over. Thorndyke then grabbed his laser gun and aimed it at Tails. "Bastard!" he cried, "I don't care if Sonic's not here! I'll kill you right here right now!"

Cosmo gasped. "No!" she cried, as she threw herself into Thorndyke's side, causing him to miss and shoot one of his own Badniks. Thorndyke turned and pistol-whipped her off. "You little wench!" he snarled, "You wanna die instead? I can arrange that!"

"Leave her alone!" Tails shouted as he whacked his two tails hard into Thorndyke, sending him crashing into the ledge of the roof. He then took a hold of Cosmo. "Are you okay?" he asked.

Cosmo smiled and nodded. "Thank you for saving me."

Tails grinned. "I should be saying that!"

The doors swung open and a panicked crowd began piling in, looking for a way out. Tails stepped forward. "Everyone!" he called, "Get back downstairs! It isn't safe up here! Hurry! Go! Before Thorndyke--"

"EYAII!"

Tails' eyes widened and he whipped around to see Thorndyke grabbing Cosmo. He went for her, but Thorndyke shoved his gun to the side of Cosmo's head. "Take a step closer, and she's dead!"

Tails froze in in tracks, forced to helplessly watch Cosmo's face fill with fear as Thorndyke stepped back towards the platform of the Egg Carrier and raise back up, with Cosmo in tow. "You took what was important to me, now I'll return the favor!"

"Tailsss!" Cosmo cried as they disappeared into the Egg Carrier.

"Cosmooo!" Tails cried back as he desperately ran after the ship, which began to fly off. He jumped to the air and twirled his tails, hoping to catch up, but he just wasn't fast enough. He had to keep going. He had to catch up somehow.

Suddenly, something grabbed hold of his ankles. He looked down. "Sonic!"

The blue hedgehog dangled from Tails' feet, grinning. "Tails, leave this to me!"

"But Cosmo..!

"Don't worry, I'll bring her back in once piece! Promise!" He gave a wink of assurance.

Tails hesitated for a moment... then decided Sonic could do it quicker. He nodded, then began somersaulting in the air, going faster and faster, until Sonic had enough force to launch himself up and grab onto the Egg Carrier, carefully crawling through until he found a way in.

ooo

"Sire, the ship appears to be exiting!"

King Maximillian Acorn stared hard into the monitor, which shot video of the Egg Carrier trying to make its escape. "By holding my people hostage, he has already declared war on us," he announced, "The last thing we need is another Dr. Robotnik."

He jabbed a finger towards the picture of the carrier. "Send out all troops! Fire at will!"

ooo

"Let me go, please!" Cosmo cried as Thorndyke dragged her through the interior of the Egg Carrier.

"Not in this lifetime, honey," Thorndyke responded, "A beautiful young girl like yourself makes the perfect hostage. And why would I want to please those who also want your freedom? This also makes the perfect revenge."

"Tails never did anything to hurt you!"

"He only destroyed my plans for getting rid of Sonic."

"That's another thing; Sonic isn't the person you describe him as! I'm sorry you never got to be his friend, but he's loved all around the world. He can't stop and say hi to every single person. He's too busy."

"Yeah… busy showing off. Eggman gave me the attention I deserved. And when Sonic defeated him, everything I lived for was gone."

"You can start over! Fresh! Please, don't do this! There's still hope!"

"I'm glad I never became Sonic's friend!" Thorndyke spat, "Eggman entrusted me with the job of running the Eggman Empire should anything happen to him, and I will not let him down like Sonic let me down!"

"Intruder Alert! Intruder Alert!" a female voice rang out through the intercoms, as view screens began popping up, showing images of a blue hedgehog racing through the ship and destroying any Badniks in his way. "Hedgehog has been spotted. Repeat, hedgehog spotted."

"Initiate all immediate hedgehog countermeasures!" Thorndyke ordered, before red lights began to flash and an alarm blared. "Now what?"

"Enemy airship in range," spoke the emotionless female voice, "Mobotropolis Royal Air Force. Closing in."

"Oh just great," groaned the young doctor, "We're not sticking around then. Let's go, sweetie!" He pulled her off once more.

ooo

"What's going on now?" Sonic wondered as he blasted through a horde of Egg Pawns. Finally when he had a moment to himself, he made his way towards a window and looked out. All around the Egg Carrier were King Acorn's ships, surrounding and preparing to fire.

"What the heck are they doing?" he cried to himself. He then turned and raced off once more. "I better find Cosmo quick, before it's too late!"

ooo

"And they say I'M insane!" Thorndyke grumbled as he got into his hovercraft, the Aerial Dymatic and pulling Cosmo inside behind him.

"Please!" Cosmo pleaded, "Don't do this! I just got engaged!"

"Wonderful," said Thorndyke flatly, "Watch as I don't give a crap." He started it up and pulled Cosmo back in before she could make a quick escape.

"Stop!" a familiar voice called out.

"Sonic!" Cosmo cried, as the blue hedgehog entered the room.

"I'd love to stay and meet you, hedgehog," said Thorndyke, "But I really need to get going… You know, before Acorn's forces decide to blow us all up."

"What?" Sonic glared out the windows as laser beams began to power up. By the time he turned his head again, Thorndyke was gone, along with Cosmo, having escape a bottom hatch. "Uh oh…"

ooo

The lasers fired, striking the Egg Carrier dead on. It exploded from the center, bursting to flames, and falling from the sky and landing in the harbor.

Everyone in the War Room applauded loudly in Castle Acorn. King Max smiled broadly. "Great job, everyone," he commended, "Crisis adverted."

"Your highness!" a voice cried over the radio, "We have visual! A small hovercraft is getting away! We see what looks like Dr. Eggman and an accomplice!"

"Put the visual on screen!" the king ordered. The picture on the monitor showed a small image of the Aerial Dymatic, with Thorndyke at the wheel, and a green person sitting next to him. "That looks like Dr. Eggman's successor," said Max, "Take him out before he can get away!"

"But sir!" spoke someone, "There's someone with him! Who is that person?"

"We don't know if it's friend or foe."

"Doesn't matter," said Max, "We can't afford to take any chances! Take them out!"

"Sire, wait!" the voice on the radio spoke, "Visual confirmation of Sonic the Hedgehog! He was on the Egg Carrier, but just jumped out!" The picture then showed images of Sonic jumping from building to building, chasing after the Aerial Dymatic.

King Acorn narrowed his eyes. "That blasted prince," he muttered, "Bringing trouble with him wherever he goes. We can handle our own problems. Fire at the enemies!"

"But sir—"

"I said FIRE!"

ooo

Sonic gave everything he had to keep up with the Aerial Dymatic as it flew farther away into the sky. If only he knew how to fly….

More of the Mobotropolis Air Force ships began closing in, some flying overhead to cut off Thorndyke. Sonic waved his arms wildly in the air. "STOP!" he screamed, "Don't shoot! He's got a hostage!"

But the words fell on deaf ears as they circled and prepared to fire.

ooo

Thorndyke was forced to put on the brakes as ships cornered him on every turn. "No!"

Cosmo gasped and brought her fists to her mouth, tears forming in her eyes.

Thorndyke grew more deranged. "You'd honestly shoot an unarmed man? And a beautiful hostage? You're even crazier than me! I'll show you TRUE insantity!" He pulled up and full-throttled the machine, aiming straight at the ships in front of him. "Long live the Eggman Empire!"

ooo

This was it. It was do or die. He couldn't afford to screw up. Sonic pushed past his limits, reaching up to Mach 1, all the way to the end of the rooftop he was on, and leaped into the air, making his way towards the Aerial Dymatic.

"COSMO!" Sonic shouted, grabbing the frightened girl's attention, and held out his hand. Cosmo turned and held out her own hand as he got closer.

Then the ships fired. The blasts barely missed Sonic, but struck the Aerial Dymatic head on.

"No..!"

The force of the explosion knocked Sonic backwards, tumbling in the air and towards the gravel below. The landing would have killed him had Tails not been there to break the fall in an attempt to catch the hedgehog. The two landed hard on the ground, tumbling over several times before skidding to a halt.

Sonic groaned and slowly sat up, realizing he was on top of an unconscious Tails. He quickly got off and picked up his shoulders. "Tails! Tails, are you all right?"

Tails stirred and slowly opened his eyes, getting his bearings straight, and suddenly bolted up as the sight of the explosion and crash landing far off. "Cosmo!" he cried as he got up and ran as fast as he could to ground zero. Sonic however was faster and bolted past Tails.

It was indeed the scene of a crash. Fire burned, debris spread everywhere, and there were even traces of blood, which nearly stopped Sonic's heart. He made his way through the wreckage, unknowingly stepping on a body. He looked down to see Thorndyke, face-down on the ground, very much dead. Sonic couldn't help but not feel sorry at the sight.

He glanced over, spotting a piece of metal on top of a green figure. "Cosmo!" he cried, racing over and heaving the metal off. Cosmo was lying on her side, unmoving and unresponsive. Sonic knelt down and pressed his fingers against her neck. She wasn't breathing, and there was no pulse.

She was gone.

Sonic's eyes watered slightly, and he turned away in sorrow.

"Cosmooo!"

"Tails stay back!" Sonic ran up and grabbed the two-tailed fox before he could get closer.

Tails fought back, trying to escape Sonic's grip. "Let go, Sonic!" he shouted, "Let me go! I've gotta check on her! I've gotta help her!"

"Tails, stop it!" said Sonic, "There's nothing you can do! She's gone!"

Tails froze for a moment, after hearing those words. "No… NO!" he squirmed trying to get past, "No, I won't believe it! I've gotta save her! Let me go! I've gotta help her!"

"Tails, she's gone! Stop it!"

"No!"

"Don't go in there!"

"Let me go!"

Tails squirmed some more, but Sonic held a tight grip, not letting him past. "No…" Tails finally stopped and looked forward, blank, tears filling up in his eyes. "No…! She can't be… She can't be!"

"Tails… I'm sorry…"

"NO!" Tails screamed, collapsing into Sonic, burying his head into his shoulder and sobbing uncontrollably. "No… no…"

Sonic held him close. What else could he do?

Air ships began to land around them and troops piled out. Sonic placed Tails on the ground and jumped to his feet, making his way to the soldiers. "All right, which one of you morons shot that blast?"

The soldiers looked rather offended, then one raised his hand. Sonic wasted no time zipping over and grabbing him by the collar. "What the hell is wrong with you?" he shouted, "Didn't you see that guy had a hostage? How could you shoot him knowing she was in danger?"

"Unhand me!" the soldier ordered.

"No chance!" Sonic grit his teeth.

"Stop it!" shouted another soldier, "He was only following orders!"

"Whose orders?" Sonic demanded.

"King Acorn's. Who else?"

Sonic narrowed his eyes, and let go of the soldier. "Where's King Acorn?"

"At the castle. You're not planning to—"

Sonic pointed at Tails. "Make sure that fox is all right. That's an order."

"I'm sorry, but my orders come from the Acorn family. With all due respect, I have no basis to obey your—"

Sonic grabbed the soldier's collar again and pulled his face into his. "May I remind you I can do a spin dash not only into robots?" he snarled.

The soldier gulped loudly. "Um… Troop 2, secure the fox! Escort him to the hospital!"

Sonic nodded approvingly, then turned and raced off, heading to the castle. Tails watched as Sonic left. As he disappeared, the fox's eyes narrowed and his fists clenched the ground.

ooo

Sonic pushed past security and managed to make his way into the War Room in Castle Acorn, slamming the doors open as he stormed in.

King Acorn turned, and scowled at the prince of Mobodoon's rude entrance. "Prince Takeshi," he seethed, "You have much to atone for. That man was after you, and therefore you are responsible for-"

He didn't get a chance to finish before Sonic grabbed his collar and yanked him down to his level, "What the hell is wrong with you?"

"Unhand me at once!" King Acorn ordered.

Sonic didn't obey. "Why did you tell your troops to fire when Thorndyke had a hostage?"

"I saw no hostage."

"That thing he escaped in wasn't huge. How could you miss her? Green, roses in her hair…"

"I assumed she was a colleague of Thorndyke."

Sonic harshly let go of the king. "What kind of King puts someone's life in danger?"

"What kind of 'hero' allows danger to constantly threaten the world? From where I stand, this is your entire fault, and I was merely doing what I could to protect my kingdom!"

"Hey it's not like I lead him here and told him to take hostages! I was going to save them, you know!"

"It is because of your reckless behavior and constant 'heroing' that brings enemies into our territories and put us all in danger just to go after you!"

"You think I like having this happen? If you'd given me my space, I would have made things right! But YOU! You're the one who killed my best friend's girlfriend!"

"Well I'm sorry, but if that Thorndyke man wasn't looking for you, this wouldn't have had to happen!"

"Atone for this!"

"Not until you atone for your behavior!"

Sonic growled, seeing that this was getting him nowhere, and turned to leave. "You'll have to hear from my mother and the council of Mobodoon now. I'll personally make sure of it."

King Acorn rolled his eyes. "Oh sure, like YOU are actually going to partake in your kingdom's politics."

Sonic stopped and glanced back harshly. "When it involved my friends, I do what I have to."

ooo

Cosmo's funeral was on a rainy day. Fitting, Tails figured, since rainy days were what Cosmo loved the most. He remembered whenever it rained, she would run out and play around, letting the raindrops fall on her head, pulling Tails out with her, and embracing him closely as they kissed under the wet weather.

No more…

"Let us remember the good times of young Cosmo Seederian, taken away from us too soon," spoke the preacher, "Coming from a family of refugees in hopes of a better life, she is survived by her mother Earthia and older sister Galaxina. But she was loved by many, and will never be forgotten."

The funereal neared its end and everyone had placed a rose on Cosmo's coffin. Tails stood by a tree, watching as only Cosmo's family stayed to watch as the coffin opened and exposed her body. It was lifted out and carefully placed down the six-foot hole. Being a plant-creature, Cosmo's family's tradition was to be buried whole without a coffin, to be one with the earth again. The coffin was merely to cover the badly-beaten body. Watching her get buried was a family only thing, but Tails just had to see her one last time. He couldn't help but shed tears upon seeing the diamond ring on her finger.

"Words can't describe my feelings for you, except maybe that it would mean everything to me if you'll share the rest of your life with me."

Not only did he fail to save her, he couldn't even be there for her final moments.

"Tails..?"

The fox turned to see Sonic approaching. "C'mon, everyone's leaving. Don't wanna get left behind."

Tails turned back. "Leave me alone."

Sonic frowned. "Tails… don't do this to yourself. There was nothing you could do. Nothing any of us could do. But I'll help you through this, no matter what. I'll always be here for you."

"… Like how you were there for me in Mobotropolis?"

Sonic blinked. "What?"

Tails turned back, angry. His eyes were red from crying, but this only heightened his angered look. "I could have saved her! You think I wasn't strong enough? But no, you said to leave it to you! You had to go play the big shot hero like always!"

"Tails—"

"I never needed you more than ever, and you let me down, Sonic! You even promised you'd bring her back in, get this, one piece! You couldn't even do that!"

Sonic grimaced. "Excuse me? What do you think I did? You think I just sat there twiddling my thumbs, and let her die? You know DAMN WELL I did everything I could to save her!"

"And you didn't! She was going to marry me, Sonic! She said yes! And you let her die! All because Thorndyke wanted you! He was right! You're ego's more important than your friends! All you care about is being a hero!"

"Shut it,Tails! I--"

"I'll never forgive you for this, Sonic…"

Sonic stopped and stared, the words striking him in the heart.

"Never!" Tails continued, "As long as I live…"

He pushed past the hedgehog, storming to where his family was waiting, leaving Sonic to stand alone in the rain, as Cosmo became one with the earth.