He was wet.
He opened his eyes.
He was lying in the middle of the street with a piece of broken glass in his left hand. He wondered if he should switch it to his right hand before anyone noticed, then figured that it was probably too late, they probably already knew he wasn't right handed.
Why did his arms hurt so much?
He sat up. He was hit with an intense wave of dizziness, but he forced himself to lean against a tree and then he rubbed his eyes, hard, with one hand.
When he opened them again he saw all of the people. None of them saw him.
No one looked at him.
His eyes dropped as he looked at himself. He was drenched in sticky, dark red blood. He was caked in it. And nobody cared.
A pounding noise started in the back of his head and slowly grew in intensity. No one cared. Not even one person. He might not be the best person in the world, but didn't even he deserve better than this? Couldn't just one person have stopped? Just one? Just to say, "Hey, you all right?"
The fox was right, Ogilvie realized. The only person you could believe was yourself. If they didn't give a damn about you, then you shouldn't care what they wanted you to be.
He got up.
He was still extremely dizzy, and incredibly he was still bleeding. He must have been bleeding for hours. He forced himself to walk. He walked for a long time. A long, long time. He spent this time thinking hard about himself and who he was. He decided he wasn't going to take anything from anyone anymore. He was done listening to what other people had to say. They were going to listen to him or they were going down. He wasn't going to deal with their crap anymore. He was going to be his own person now, and there was no one who could stand in his way.
After a while he was standing in the middle of a forest. He wasn't quite sure how he had gotten there, or where he was going, but he knew that he had to sit down before he fell down. He sat down against a tree and closed his eyes.
He sat up straight. He looked around.
There was no one there.
He supposed he had been imagining things and sat back.
"Hey, mister, you okay?"
Ogilvie jumped. He looked around again and for some reason looked up.
There was a little orange fox sitting in the tree.
"What're you doing?" he asked.
"Sittin'," said the fox. "Wha'd ya do to yourself? Didja get in an accident?"
"An accident?" said Ogilvie, whose dizziness was making it hard to think.
"Yeah, like a car accident! Hey, have ya ever seen a car? 'Cause I haven't, and I wanna, and if you have one I'd like to see it, please."
"I don't have a car," said Ogilvie. "I didn't get in a car accident."
"I..." said Ogilvie, not really wanting to say, because then he'd have to admit it to himself.
"Here, I'll come down so ya won't hafta yell," said the fox, and he jumped out of the tree to land in front of Ogilvie. He was so tiny that Ogilvie wondered why he wasn't still in his mother's arms, wanting her comfort.
"How old're you?" he asked the fox.
"I'm two," said the fox, holding up two fingers. He looked at them. "Or is that three?"
"No," said Ogilvie, "that's two."
"Oh, good," said the fox. "My English is not so good sometimes, but I find that reading the dictionary really helps a lot. I learned a lot of words from there. It's a BIG dictionary. It's bigger than me!"
"Imagine that," Ogilvie muttered. He had a headache and wasn't feeling too friendly, although he was actually delighted that someone was talking to him in such a nice manner.
"Lots of things are bigger than me," the fox continued. "Not a lot of things are small like me either."
"Wow," said Ogilvie. "Isn't that somethin'."
"No," said the fox. "But maiyo thinks I'm cute, so that's good enough for me!"
"Who's mayo?" asked Ogilvie.
"Not mayo, maiyo!" said the fox. "She's my mommy. It's kind of how you say mommy in kitsune."
"You're a kitsune?"
"Yep! Din'tcha see my two tails? Everyone else does. And then they kind of walk in a direction that's away from me."
All of a sudden the little fox sat down and started to cry.
"Whoa," said Ogilvie. "What are you doing?"
"I hate them!" cried the fox. "I hate my tails! I wish I only had one!"
"Aren't kitsune supposed to have more than one tail?"
"Not me," sobbed the fox, "I'm only two! You're not supposed to have two tails until you're a hundred! I'm not a hundred! I'm two!"
"What's your name?" asked Ogilvie.
"Miles," said the fox.
"My name's Ogilvie," said Ogilvie. He was trying to get the kid to stop crying.
Miles looked up.
"Huh?" he said.
"My name's Ogilvie," Ogilvie repeated.
"That is the worst name I've ever heard," said Miles. "I hate your name, Ogilvie. Although it must be interesting to spell," he mused. He started to write on the ground with a stick. He had mostly stopped crying, but he sniffed every once in a while.
Ogilvie was angry. Who was this kid, to think that he could just go around insulting other people's names?
"Hey, what's your name again?" asked Ogilvie.
"Miles," said Miles. "Miles Prower."
"Miles per hour? What kind of a name is that?" asked Ogilvie. "How can you insult my name when you're named after a speed limit?"
"A-a what?" asked Miles.
"Y'know...how fast you're allowed to go."
"N-no..." said Miles. he was starting to cry again.
Ogilvie hadn't meant to do that.
"Hey, don't cry," he said. "I guess Miles per hour means something else in kitsune."
"B-but my name is stupid! No wonder everyone laughs at me when I tell them it!"
"Well, I guess we both have stupid names then," said Ogilvie. "Hey, I've got an idea!"
"What is it?" sniffled Miles.
"We could give each other a new name. Like a nickname," said Ogilvie.
Miles brightened up instantly.
"Yeah! That would be so cool!" he said. "Let's do that! You go first."
Ogilvie smiled. "Well, there's only one thing I can call you, kiddo," he said.
"What's that?" asked Miles.
"Tails," said Ogilvie.
"W-why would you wanna call attention to them?" asked Miles, pulling them around into his lap. "They're horrible."
"'cause no matter how much you hate them, they're yours," said Ogilvie. "You gotta like yourself. If you don't like yourself, who will?"
"That's good advice, Ogilvie," said Miles. "I'll try an remember that."
"I will too, Tails," said Ogilvie.
"kaykay, " said Tails. "Now it's your turn...hm..."
Ogilvie waited patiently. This kid read the dictionary, he must have all sorts of interesting names in his little head.
"I know I know!" said Tails. "What's all of your name?"
"You mean my full name?"
"Uh-huh," said Tails, jumping up and down.
"Ogilvie Maurice Hedgehog," said Ogilvie.
"Yuck!" said Tails. "My name's lots better, I promise!"
"What is it?" asked Ogilvie.
"Your new name is," said Tails, twirling around and around in a circle, his tails swirling around him, "a very good name. I think you'll like it. It's cool, I think, like you."
Ogilvie would have been happy with just that. No one had ever called him cool before.
"What is it?" said Ogilvie, feeling a thrill he'd never felt before.
"I picked it 'cause I saw you runnin' so fast," said Tails.
"But what is it?" asked Ogilvie. He wanted to know so much he could taste it. This was going to be the start of a whole new life. He would erase Ogilvie, make it so that he didn't exist. He would become this new person and be the cool guy that Tails thought he was.
Tails smiled and said, "Your name is Sonic.
"Sonic the Hedgehog."