~A Numb Lullaby~
Summary: A brother's sacrifice and last moments on earth..."No! Raphael get out of here, now!" Leonardo cried desperately, seeing the flashing red numbers from the corner of his eyes. "No," Raphael whispered fiercely. "I'm not going to let you die alone. If we die, we die together." Then Raphael grabbed Leo's hand in his and squeezed. And then the bomb went off. CHARACTER DEATH. Two-shot.
Disclaimer: I do not own TMNT or the songs and quotes used throughout this story. All rights belong to their respective owners. I make no profit from this.
A/n: I have had this idea in my mind for a while now and only just got around to writing it. It took about three hours to write and thirty minutes to proof read through, but I am rather happy with it. As it says in the summary, this is a death-fic, so if anyone does not like them, I suggest you hit the back button and don't read any further.
Warnings for swearing and violence.
The songs used throughout this story are as followed;
Be Strong- Delta Goodrem
How Could This Happen To Me?-Simple Plan
One Heart Million Voices- New Empire
Cough Syrup- Young The Giant
Iridescent- Linkin Park
Night Of My Life- Stephanie Mcintosh
Last Goodbye- Alex Band
You Are My Sunshine- Johnny Cash
Being pulled under…
Confusion, but ahead, a growing clarity.
Sounds, soft, barely there, growing steadily louder, clearer.
Sensations returning, slowly at first, but returning all the same.
Leonardo groaned as awareness slowly crept back into his body, slow and sluggish. His head pounded like something fierce, and Leonardo was sure, that for a moment, it was being used as a drum in Hell, the Devil himself beating out a rhythm.
Then, like he had been hit with a bolt of lightning, the pain, the pounding in his head, flared to life in the rest of his body. Why did everything hurt so? Where was he? And more importantly, what happened?
Leonardo knew that if he wanted to find out these answers, he would have to open his eyes. Who knew that a simple action, performed daily by millions, sometimes even unconsciously, could turn into a fight of willpower for Leonardo? He was sure someone had glued his eyes shut whilst he was knocked out. Hell, he was sure someone had stolen his real eyes and replaced them with led, they felt that heavy.
His head was fuzzy and his ears were ringing, like he had been to a large concert the night before, and the loud pulsing music he had heard whilst there was the source of his current state. Except Master Splinter would skin our hides if we ever dared to go out to a concert, Leo thought idly whilst trying to gather all his strength, which wasn't much, to try and pry his eyes open. Besides, we'd been seen anyway. There are always flashy lights at a concert. We'd have to hide in a tree at least a hundred metres away from the actual concert and that wouldn't be much fun.
Leonardo shook his head in order to get rid of the wayward thoughts. The result was the return of the Devil, taking the stage again for one final performance on the Leonardo-drums.
He felt something hot and wet slide down his cheek, and even through his fogged haze, Leonardo realized that it was blood; well it was hard not to realize it was blood, if the coppery smell was anything to go by.
His mouth was dry and felt like sandpaper. Leo licked his cracked and bloody lips in an attempt to re-moisten his mouth. He could taste blood, and the acidic taste of bile in the back of his throat. He tried to spit, to get rid of the horrid taste, but soon realized he didn't even have enough moisture in his mouth to do that.
I will sell my two katana, if it means I can have one drink of water.
With an effort, Leo managed to crack his eyes open to small slits. It took him a moment for his eyes to adjust to the gloom that cloaked wherever he was. Leonardo blinked, and turned his head the best he could to look around and make out more of his shadow-cloaked surroundings.
He appeared to be in some kind of warehouse, somewhere near the docks. The faint smell of salty water and fish hit his senses, along with the more overpowering scents that lingered in the warehouse; blood, dust and petrol.
Large wooden crates were stacked in the far corner of the room, piled almost up to the ceiling, and stacked rather precariously. Leonardo was afraid that if he made a noise they would topple over.
High windows, most of which were shattered, dominated the walls, letting in broken fragments of moonlight.Ah, that's why it's so dark, Leo thought, it had to be close to midnight by now.
Then one thought crossed Leo's mind. One thought that momentarily pushed away the crushing pain and scraped away his confusion and disorient state. My family, where is my family?
Filled with worry and fear for his brothers, Leo struggled and tried desperately to get to his feet. That's when the full horror of the situation became apparent. He was trapped. He was pinned to the cold, rough concrete ground, buried under a heavy layer of rubble. His head and shoulders were free from the crushing weight, and amazingly, so were his arms. But that was it. He was trapped on his stomach, unable to even wiggle from side-to-side, let alone move his legs and pull them up under him.
No! Leo thought desperately, struggling despite the fact that he knew he was trapped. His body gave a scream of protest with his useless struggles, and a fierce pain shot down his back and right leg.
"Argh!" Leo couldn't help the cry of pain that left his lips. It was filled with pain and agony, and the uselessness he felt at that moment. He couldn't protect his brothers like this, not if he couldn't move. He had failed. He had failed himself, his father and Sensei...his brothers.
"Oh God, I'm sorry," Leo choked, feeling his eyes blur with the sting of tears and his throat close up with a hard lump of emotion that he could not swallow, despite his efforts to do so. "I'm so sorry. I failed. I failed..."
And then, out of the foggy haze...
Leo snapped his head up at the achingly familiar voice.
Are you swimming upstream,
In oceans of blue?
Do you feel like your sinking?
Are you sick of the rain?
After all you've been through?
Well I know what you're thinking...
Raphael coughed, trying to clear the dust that was choking him. His vision swam and distorted with black dots, creeping in from the periphery, like a hungry lion, closing in on its kill. The dust seemed to be everywhere. It was in the air, stinging his eyes. It was in his mouth, filling his nose with the musty odour and making his throat itchy and his lungs burn.
He stumbled into the warehouse, well, what was left of it anyway. It had taken him twenty minutes just to shift enough rubble away from the door so he could slip in. By this time the wanning moon was making its descent from the cloud obscured sky, and into a different sky, a sky halfway around the world.
It took him a minute to get his breathing back under control and for the jarring coughs to subside. He stood still in a bruised and battered body. Streaks of dust covered his dark blue bruises and mixed in with the crimson blood trailing across his skin from numerous cuts, some deep, some not so.
He stood still, waiting for his vision to break through the coiling shadows and darkness. He waited until he could see the outline of the windows on the opposite wall. He waited until he could see everything that was left in the decrepitated building; a tower of cards that would fall at any moment.
There! His golden eyes snapped to a high pile of debris in the middle of the room, his eyes piercing through the darkness like the beam of a torch.
He moved then, making his way across the shattered glass and broken debris covered ground, not stopping til he reached his destination.
"I'm so sorry. I failed. I failed..."
Sinking to his knees, his body heavy, slow, unresponsive. Numb.
A pair of eyes, beautiful, familiar, alive, snapping to his.
Confusion at first, a disorienting cloud still hovering over his mind.
Why is he here?
Then he remembered.
He remembered everything.
I open my eyes
I try to see but I'm blinded by the white light
I can't remember how
I can't remember why
I'm lying here tonight
And I can't stand the pain
And I can't make it go away
No I can't stand the pain
He blinked. His mind was confusing him, showing him only what he wanted to see in what he was sure to be his last night on earth. He blinked again and the image became clearer, sharper, in focus. It didn't shimmer like a mirage, didn't vanish like a ghost, and didn't slip away when he opened his eyes. He was really there.
"Leo," Raphael croaked, sinking to his knees beside his pinned brother. He ignored the glass that bit into his flesh, and the way the cold ground seeped its icy fingers into his body, turning him numb.
"Raph," Leo repeated in relief. Despite the crushing weight of the debris that pinned him down, it felt as if a tremendous weight had been lifted from his shoulders. "Thank God you're alright."
"Same to you bro," Raphael said, gripping Leo's scarred hand in his own, squeezing it tightly. His eyes shone with relief and an emotion Leo was trying to identify.
Why does Raphael look so...broken?
Then it came to him. "The others, are they alright?" He demanded desperately, holding Raphael's gaze with his own, afraid to hear the answer but wanting, no needing, to hear it.
Raphael smiled a soft, reassuring smile. "Yeah bro," he said with his own obvious relief. "They're safe."
"Where are they?" He asked, looking around the abandoned space as if he expected them to stroll through the debris any minute now.
"A few blocks over, where it's safe."
Again that pause, that frightened, hopeless look.
"I'm so sorry bro," Raphael suddenly broke down. His grip on Leo's hand tightened, as if he were afraid to let him go. His body shook with body-wracking sobs. Tears coursed freely down his cheeks, soaking through his flame-red mask and onto the dusty ground at his feet.
"I tried," he whispered, his voice scratchy, muffled by his choking sobs, distraught. "God I tried so much!"
Leo didn't say anything. It wasn't Raphael's fault. It wasn't anybody's fault. But he knew why he was saying it.
That cloud that had kept his memories trapped in the furthest corner of his mind had vaporized, like dew on a hot morning. Now he had his memories back.
And he remembered everything.
It may be over for us
But seasons change, oh they change for a reason
With the autumn leaves that fall down
I wrote your name across them all
So you know that I'm here with you
And the spring is coming soon my friend
One heart with a million voices
One day it could all be gone
Hold on to the words they told us
Hold on to it all my son
The wind stirred the night air like a giant's breath. They stood outlined against the dark skyline, crouched down atop the roof, their bandana tails streaming out behind them, as if they were alive, and weren't stirred by the breeze.
"How many people do you think are in there?" Michelangelo asked, peering over the edge of the roof to get a better look at the dimly lit warehouse below them.
"There must be at least twenty, maybe more," Donatello replied after a moment of watching silhouettes move about inside the building. "More than we can handle."
"More than we can handle?" Raphael snorted, whipping his twin sai from his belt and twirling them expertly in his hands. "They're Purple Dragons Don, not Foot Ninjas. Besides, we could take on twenty Foot Ninjas if we had to."
"We have to think this through before we just jump in there and say 'hi'," Leo said calmly, assessing the situation with his usual cool, arms folded comfortably over his chest. "They out number us and we don't know what kind of weapons they have in there."
"Exactly," Raphael said, pointing a sai towards the warehouse. "We don't know what they got in there. They could have a bomb 'fer all we know. We can't let 'em smuggle those weapons into 'tha city."
"I know that Raphael," Leonardo said calmly. "But we can't just rush in there either. We have one shot at this. If they reach the city, we might not be able to stop them. We have to devise a plan."
"Good thing we got Don," Mikey said with a grin.
Don shook his head and smiled at his little brother before clearing his throat. "Okay guys, here's what we'll do..."
The acts of this life are the destiny of the next.
Raphael's shoulders shook as he sucked in a deep, broken breath. "I'm so sorry Leo. I'm so sorry..."
"Raphael," Leo said calmly, trying to fight back the aching tears that had pooled in the corners of his eyes. "Raphael, look at me."
Raphael reluctantly lifted his gaze from the ground and met Leo's gentle eyes.
"It's not your fault," Leo said gently, squeezing his brother's hand in his own. "This is no one's fault. These things just happen Raph."
"No," Raphael gritted his teeth and shook his head fiercely. "No, don't say that! Don't you dare say that! It's my fault and you know it!"
"Raphael," Leo said again, putting a hint of authority into his tone. "Raphael, stop it."
"If I had just listened 'ta ya'," Raphael sobbed, choking back a strangled cry. "If I had just listened 'ta ya' for once!"
"Raphael, if you want someone to blame, blame the Purple Dragons," Leo said, forcing his brother to look at him again. "But do not blame yourself. This is not your fault Raphael."
Raphael shook his head and bit back a bitter laugh. "How can ya' say that when yer' pinned like this?"
"Because I know what I'm saying is true," Leo said firmly and without hesitation.
This time Raphael looked back at Leo and didn't tear his gaze away. Leo offered him a gentle smile in return.
It was the least he could do.
I wanted you to know, I love the way you laugh
I wanna hold you high and steal your pain away
I keep your photograph, and I know it serves me well
I wanna hold you high and steal your pain
'Cause I'm broken, when I'm lonesome
And I don't feel right, when you're gone away
The dark clouds that studded the sky like fallen leaves provided the turtles with a plethora of cover. The shadows that were cast by the dark night were thick and impenetrable. And not even the most skilled eye could tell that they were moving.
The four brothers made their way quickly and silently across the wharf and to the side of the warehouse. Scanning the perimeter for any signs of movement, they shared a glance and quickly scaled the wall, making their way to the roof.
Opening the small window at the top, they looked down at the oblivious Purple Dragons below, who were rushing back and forth like ants, hauling cargo and crates towards a large truck.
"Okay, so does everyone remember the plan?" Leo hissed.
Beside him Mikey was itching to get moving. Don was calculating everything with a trained eye, and Raphael was practically jumping up and down on the spot, his sais already drawn and twirling in a dangerous arc in his hands.
"Yeah, yeah, we've only been over it like a thousand times," Raphael snapped.
Leo rolled his eyes at his brother's clear enthusiasm for 'busting up some heads,' as he so elegantly puts it. "Alright, but remember; if you see any signs of a bomb, get out of there straight away."
"Got it," Mikey said with an affirmative nod before yelling at the top of his lungs, "cowabunga!"
Raphael eagerly followed his little brother through the window and dropped down to the startled Purple Dragons below.
"They do know we're supposed to be ninjas, right?" Don said too Leo with a smile.
"Some people just never learn," Leo sighed; hiding his own smile as he quickly joined his brothers.
The boundaries which divide life from death
are at best shadowy and vague.
Who shall say where one ends,
and the other begins?
~Edgar Alan Poe
Leo couldn't remember when the fight turned the odds against them, especially when the odds had been in their favour for the whole night, up to this point.
One minute they were kicking Purple Dragon butt, and the next they were fighting to stay alive.
They had underestimated the kinds of weapons the Purple Dragons had been importing, and when they saw the turtles they were quick to whip them out without hesitation.
Leo ducked as another laser-bullet was fired at him. It sailed just centimetres above his head, and he could feel the air move around him as it passed. Purple Dragons that had been lying on the ground moments ago, groaning and moaning in pain, were now back on their feet, confidence renewed with their frightening new weapons.
Leo managed to flip behind a Purple Dragon and knock his weapon from his hand before using the butt of his katana to knock him out. He was drenched in sweat, and despite their endurance training, was running out of steam.
He took this momentary lull in the fight to search around for his brothers. Donatello's bo-staff had been snapped in half, and he was now wielding it like Leo's own katana, to block and hold off the enemies that were slowly circling him.
Michelangelo was twirling his nun-chucks around him, trying desperately to keep his enemies at bay and to simultaneously block the laser-bullets that were being fired at him.
One of Raphael's sais were embedded in the side of the cargo truck. He held the other in his hand, leaping at anyone who came near him, his anger providing him with small bursts of adrenaline.
Trying to asses which one of his brothers needed the most help, Leo caught a flicker of movement behind him and spun around to face Hun. He held a small bomb in his hand, and was smiling wickedly at Leo.
"Retreat! Get out of here now!"Leo shouted, his heart twisting with fear and his blood turning to ice in his veins.
His brothers looked his way, and seeing the bomb in Hun's hand, made a sprint for the nearest exit.
Leo turned back around to face Hun just in time to see him throw the bomb. It flew in the air, dark and sleek and deadly, going higher and higher until it hit the roof. It must have been one of their imported weapons, because it didn't detonate as soon as it hit the roof. Instead, it attached itself to the roof, right above where his brothers were.
A red light flashed several times before glowing deep amber.
"Get out now!" Leo screamed, moving so fast he gave Usain Bolt a run for his money. Pushing his brothers out the warehouse door and away from the bomb, Leo only had a second to breathe in relief that they were safe, before the bomb went off and the ceiling crumbled around him.
Then, everything went black.
Life's too short to even care at all oh
I'm losing my mind losing my mind losing control
These fishes in the sea they're staring at me oh oh
Oh oh oh oh
A wet world aches for a beat of a drum
If I could find a way to see this straight
I'd run away
To some fortune that I should have found by now
I'm waiting for this cough syrup to come down, come down
Raphael watched in horror as the roof collapsed, burying his brother under the rubble. On the other side of the warehouse the Purple Dragons were loading the rest of the shipment up and speeding away. Raphael let them go.
"Leo, no!" Raphael cried, his limbs unfreezing from where he had been frozen in horror. He raced towards what was left of the warehouse, furiously digging through the heavy rubble and debris that blocked the only way to his trapped brother.
"Raph, wait!" Donnie cried his voice hitched and panicked.
"Let me go!" Raphael screamed as Don tried to pull him away from the rubble. "Let me go God damn it! He's still in there!"
"Raph, Hun left another bomb," Don said, his eyes wide and afraid behind his ripped mask.
"What?" Raphael whispered, not daring to believe what Don was saying.
"Just as we left, I saw him throw another bomb," Don explained, his breathing ragged and his voice hoarse.
"We can't leave him in there!" Raphael screamed, wrenching his arm free from Don's frightened grip and quickly went back to clawing a hole through the rubble.
"I know, but we have to hurry," Don said as Mikey joined them, his baby-blue eyes shining with fear for his trapped brother.
It seemed like forever, when in reality it only took them a few minutes. They managed to create a big enough hole for one of them to slip through.
"Stay here," Raphael ordered, turning to face his two younger brothers. "I'll get Leo."
"Raph," Don said, laying a hand on his shoulder.
Raph nodded and squeezed himself through the gap. The rubble scraped his hands and his sides as he pushed himself through but he ignored it, his eyes fixed on the pile of rubble in the middle of the room, and Leonardo, who was trapped beneath it.
"Leo!" He cried when he saw him. Quickly picking his way through the debris, Raphael knelt down beside Leo. Quickly laying his fingers against his neck, he let out a breath of releif when he felt his brother's steady pulse.
"Thank God," he breathed to himself. "Hang on Leo, I'm gonna get ya' out bro."
Getting to his feet, Raphael moved around Leo, tugging at the rubble that had his brother pinned from the shoulders down. Gripping the edge of a large chunk of what used to be the ceiling, Raphael grit his teeth together and heaved with everything he had.
It didn't budge.
"Shit!" Raphael swore vehemently. Moving to another piece, Raphael tried to lift that to. But it wouldn't budge either.
"Fuck!" Raphael swore, his palms growing slippery as a horrible realization slowly dawned on him. "Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck!"
That's when Raphael noticed the bomb in the corner. It was bigger than the one Hun had thrown before. Red numbers glowed in the darkness, taunting him. He didn't want to look at those numbers, didn't want to think about what they meant, and the impending doom they would bring.
He still had time. So, for the next ten minutes Raphael grunted, groaned, swore and screamed in frustration as he tried to free his brother, tried to shift the layers of debris and rubble from his trapped body, but to no avail.
He fell to his knees as the horror and realization finally sunk in. He couldn't free Leo. He couldn't save his brother. He was doomed. He had failed.
Raphael glanced at the bomb again, at the slowly ticking numbers still displayed. With a deep, shuddering breath, he made a decision. Getting to his feet, he made his way to the hole in the rubble and pushed his way through to where his brothers were pacing nervously outside.
They stopped when they saw him emerge, the small amount of hope in their eyes dying when they saw him emerge alone.
"Where's Leo?" Mikey whispered, afraid of what his brother's answer would be.
"He's alive," Raphael said calmly, pushing aside his fear and heartache. He didn't want his brothers to see it, they couldn't.
"He's trapped under a lot of the roof," Raph went on to explain before they could say anything else. "I located the bomb, and there's still some time. I'm going to take you guys somewhere safe, and then I'm coming back to get Leo."
"No!" They both said instantly.
"Let me see the bomb," Donatello spoke up. "I might be able to disarm it."
Raphael shook his head sadly. "It can't be disarmed," he whispered. His mind flashed back to the minutes he had spent furiously examining the bomb, and discovering that it only had one red wire, and if the wire was cut, the bomb would only go off sooner. "I already tried."
"Then we'll help you get Leo out," Mikey said, tears brimming in the corners of his eyes. "We're not letting you do this alone Raph."
"Yes you are," Raphael said firmly but gently. "It's unstable in there. It's dangerous with me being in their alone, let alone the two of you too."
"No buts," Raphael interrupted, softly. "You have to listen to me now. Leo's not here to give us orders, so it falls to me. You will do as I say."
There was no use arguing. Donnie and Mikey both knew it was a hopeless situation. The only way Leo would survive was if Raphael could pull him out in time, and though Raphael hadn't told them that he couldn't free Leo, they already had a sinking feeling in their guts that that was the case.
You were standing in the wake of devastation
And you were waiting on the edge of the unknown
And with the cataclysm raining down
Insides crying "Save me now"
You were there, impossibly alone
Do you feel cold and lost in desperation?
You build up hope, but failure's all you've known
Remember all the sadness and frustration
And let it go.
Let it go
They moved quickly, following Raphael as he leapt from rooftop to rooftop, taking them further and further away from the wharf and warehouse. Finally coming to a stop, Raphael turned to face his brothers. They were at least five hundred metres away from the wharf. When the bomb went off they would be safe.
"Alright," Raphael said, slowly turning around to face his brothers. "Promise me you'll stay here."
Mikey and Donnie shared a quick look. Their eyes shone with unshed tears and defeat. How had such a simple nightly patrol and raid turned into this? A cruel joke and a fight for their lives?
They nodded, and Raphael saw they weren't going to follow. Now for the hardest part, the goodbye.
Raphael knew he was never good with words, that he often expressed his emotions through his eyes and his fists. He swallowed the hard lump that had formed in his throat, which was trying to stop the words from coming.
Pulling Donnie and Mikey in for a hug, he embraced them fiercely and closed his eyes, remembering their scent, their life, for the last time.
"Love 'ya bros," he said with a weak smile and wavering voice. "Don't ya' ever forget that."
"We love you to," Donnie said, both his and Mikey's eyes shining with brimming tears.
"Why are you saying that? You're coming back with Leo, right?" Mikey asked, seconds away from breaking down and sobbing.
Raphael turned away from his youngest brother before he could see the tears rolling down his cheeks.
"Yeah Mikey," he choked out. "'Course I will."
He left quickly before they could hear his sobs and see his tears. He hated lying to his brothers.
Well, I know the feeling
Of finding yourself stuck out on the ledge
And there ain't no healing
From cutting yourself with the jagged edge
I'm telling you that, it's never that bad
Take it from someone who's been where you're at
Laid out on the floor
And you're not sure you can take this anymore
By the time Raphael had got back to the warehouse, he was sobbing freely. His chest heaved with them and his body shook with them. He couldn't remember the last time he had cried like this. Hell, he had NEVER cried like this.
But he knew he had a reason for crying like this. And it was because he knew that tonight was the last night he would ever see his brothers again.
In this moment,
Everything suddenly makes sense
All the random pieces in my life are falling into place
In an instant
I am flying high and scared to death
Coz I wonder if you feel it to
I wanna be a part of you
If it's goodbye now forever
And I never get to see you again
If it's the last kiss
Before the world should end
I wanna thank you for the night of my life
Will this feeling
Touch you and linger on your skin
Or like a feather in the wind
And blow away out into space
Will my memory
Haunt you and bring you back again
And I wonder if you need me to
Whether I'll be meeting you
If it's goodbye now forever
And I never get to see you again
If it's the last kiss
Before the world should end
I wanna thank you for the night of my life
Don't go away
Stay with me and the sun will rise
In your eyes I will be all you need
If it's goodbye now forever
And I never get to see you again
If it's the last kiss
Before the world should end
I wanna thank you for the night of my life
Pain…always the pain…
Feels like I'm being crushed…
Raphael's here, everything's going to be okay now…
Nothing will be okay ever again.
I turn the page
My story ends
I say goodbye to all my friends
I know it's getting late
Now the light is on my face
I changed the clocks back again
And ask forgiveness for my sins
Cause I don't know where I'll go
Well this is all that I really know
I'll keep holding on
I'll keep singing my song
It gets me through it
I've got the scars to prove it
Well I know the road is long
But I'm staying strong
So don't cry
Cause this is not my last goodbye
With each minute that passed, the clearer everything was becoming to Leo. He remembered the fight; he remembered the bomb, the sadistic grin on Hun's face, the roof collapsing, the pain…
He remembered that they had pizza for dinner that night, and played guitar hero before they went out on patrol. He remembered that Mikey had accidentally broken his guitar by falling on it. He remembered the song they played to was 'Stairway to Heaven.'
He caught the faint, glowing numbers in the corner of his vision, and quickly snapped his attention back to Raphael.
"Raph, you have to get out of here now!"
Raphael smiled weakly, like he had expected Leo to say that. "Sorry bro, I ain't going nowhere."
"You have to!" Leo yelled, whipping his head back around to the bomb that was sitting in the corner, silent and waiting. "You'll be killed if you don't!"
"I know," Raphael whispered. "But so will you."
"That doesn't matter," Leo growled. "What matters is that you get out of here with Donnie and Mikey. Oh God, Donnie and Mikey! Where are they?"
"Relax bro," Raphael said gently. "I already got Donnie and Mikey away. They're safe."
"Raphael, get out of here now," Leo said firmly, grounding his teeth together in fear and frustration.
"I already told ya', no," Raphael said softly but firmly, settling down next to Leo, stretching his legs in front of him and getting comfortable.
"Raph, what the hell are you doing?" Leo cried in panic. This wasn't right, his brother should be running, not staying here with him.
Raphael looked at Leo, and Leo saw the life and the raw emotion shining in his golden eyes. "No Leo," he whispered. "I couldn't get you out of here. I tried, but I couldn't. And I couldn't disarm 'tha bomb either, or move it. I ain't leaving you here 'ta die alone either."
"Raphael please," Leo begged, taking another look at the bomb and the numbers displayed on the screen. "Get out of here now! That's an order Raphael!"
"Sorry bro," Raph smiled softly, "but you know I never follow your orders."
Leo screamed. He screamed and cried and yelled. But still Raphael didn't budge from his position next to his trapped brother.
"Listen 'ta me Leo," Raphael whispered, forcing his brother to meet his eyes. "I ain't leaving you here to die alone. We're brothers, and if we go out, we go out together."
Leo felt the tears roll down his cheeks. They didn't stop and his chest hurt from crying, but he couldn't stop.
"Raphael, please, you can't do this!"
"It'll be okay Leo," Raphael whispered. "It'll be okay."
Leo looked at the neon numbers again.
Outside, the sky was turning a soft blue, alight with hues or brilliant gold and pink. It was the start of a new day.
He closed his eyes and swallowed and wiped the tears from his face as best he could.
"I love you Leo."
"I love you to Raph."
Raphael grabbed Leo's hand and squeezed it tightly.
There was a deafening boom! and a sudden flash of pure, white light.
And in the blinding flash of light, Leo felt his mind quiet with peace and his spirit break free from the confines of his body, even as his body grew slack.
And as he took his final, shuddering breath, he smiled, despite the pain.
Because Raphael was still holding his hand.
A thousand memories
A thousand moments
All leading up to this one
You are my sunshine, my only sunshine
You make me happy when skies are gray
You'll never know dear, how much I love you
So please don't take my sunshine away
A/n: There will be one more chapter, from Donnie and Mikey's point of view, after the accident. I'd love to hear what you thought.