Hey, everyone! Yes, I've finally updated! Aren't you all excited! This time, I have the next chapter of Cyborg Hedgehog for you guys! I hope you all enjoy it!

Chapter Two: The Roboticizer

"Shadow, you can't! Don't you know what Eggman will do to you?" Tails keeps telling me not to go… I know he understands, but he loves me too much to let me go, and I don't mean a romantic type of love.

"Tails, I know full well the risks I'm taking by doing this, but I can't die by doing this. You'll at least know I'm alive, but I have to prove that Sonic is alive. I don't think Eggman would kill him after taking him prisoner. He would have done it right there in front of my eyes, otherwise. No, the Doctor had other plans for him, and I intend to find out exactly what those plans were." Since he's in front of me, I push him aside.

I start walking away. "But, Shadow! You can't!" He runs up to me and hugs me from behind. "If something happened to you… I… I don't know what I'd do!" I can hear him crying. "You're the only person that comes and checks on me. I'm gonna lose touch with reality if you don't come back!"

I get his arms off me, turn around, and put my hands on his shoulders. "I'll come back. I promise. And I'll come back with Sonic. You have my word."

He nods and wipes his tears away. "All right… Just stay safe and don't do anything stupid!"

I nod back at him. "I will. Good-bye, Tails. I'll see you when I get back." I dash out of his workshop without saying anything else. He's probably wondering how I can have this much confidence that I'll return and that Sonic's alive. I guess I just love Sonic that much, and as for how I'm sure I'll return, I think that's just me. Just because I haven't been happy doesn't mean I'm not still confident in my own abilities. Nothing changes the fact that I'm the Ultimate Lifeform.

Soon enough, I arrive at Central City… Or rather, what used to be Central City… After Eggman raided Station Square, he commenced to take over the entire United Federation, and of course, since Central City was the capital city, he runs the new Eggman Empire from there. Now, the city's called Robotropolis, because his robots basically run the place. They're the police force. They're the workers. While the people suffer under the Doctor's evil hand. I know there's nothing I can do for them right now, but I wish there was. The first step toward freedom for them is to free Sonic.

In the center of the city, where the White House used to be, sits Eggman's large tower. His headquarters. It's a large, egg-shaped building, possibly modeled after the Doctor's own physique. He's always been one for self-admiration, and I can't say I'm lacking in that department myself. The building is patrolled day and night by SWATbots. I've only had a couple run-ins with those robots since the incident, but they are much easier to handle when they aren't swarming you. However, if a SWATbot were to catch somebody trying to sneak into the headquarters, almost all of the bots in the city would be after said human or Mobian.

I've learned from my encounters that the robots tend to use brute force and paralysis as their tactics. They aren't very agile and cannot seem to recover easily from unbalance. It turns out that the Doctor did not prepare them for being faced one-on-one with any of our superhuman crew. Especially not Amy. I've seen her finish one off in seconds with that mallet of hers… I'm glad I've never actually seen her hit a living being with that thing. That would surely result in several broken bones or a severely cracked skull, depending on where she hit the person.

Back to the situation at hand, though. There is actually a reason that I think Sonic is alive. Rouge, who has been our spy, has told us that Eggman is building a new machine called a Roboticizer. It's supposedly going to turn normal Mobians and humans alike into mindless robots forced to work for the evil doctor. He wouldn't build something like that unless it would help get rid of one pest that he refuses to let die. I know he wouldn't let Sonic die. He liked the fun that Sonic gave him by resisting, and now that there's no more of that, he would surely want to put him to use.

The thought that Sonic could be alive fills me with hope. It's the only reason I'm able to keep my sanity; the only thing that I can cling to. That's why I haven't abandoned this preposterous Freedom Fighter thing, because I know that, with Sonic, we have a chance at taking that abhorrent scientist down. However, as much as I hate to admit it, if Sonic isn't alive, then we've already lost. I would only help for a while longer before I'd end up losing my sanity, because the man I loved more than life itself would be gone. Yes, I love Sonic more than life itself, which is why I haven't given up.

Soon enough, after stealthily moving across the city, blending in as best I can with the scarce amount of Mobians on the street, I arrive at the headquarters. It's much larger the closer you are to it. I didn't expect it to be this huge. That just means more trouble for me when it comes to finding Sonic. I slip into a dark alleyway and turn on the holomap Tails gave me of the building. I scan over it to find that the halls are very symmetrical, and there are many of them, creating more intersections than I'd like to see. The floor with the prison block is better, but I doubt Eggman would keep Sonic there. No, he's more likely to keep his cobalt archnemesis locked up close to him, and somewhere that the security would be extra tight.

Eggman spends most of his time in front of several screens which display video being transmitted from his seeing-eye robots; "flies on the wall", as we like to call them. They patrol every inch of every city, making sure that Eggman has the latest news on disobedient citizens without having to rely on security cameras that could so easily be avoided. I despise the little suckers with a passion and just happen to shoot a Chaos Spear at any one that comes my way.

I digress, though. Since Eggman spends most of his time up there, it would be common sense that Sonic is being held there as well, and the fact that the Doctor's bedroom is on the same floor only further reinforces that logic. Unfortunately, it's at the top, making an already hard mission even more difficult. The new Roboticizer, however, is supposed to be located on the ground level, and if Sonic is taken there today, then that makes the mission much easier when it comes to finding him, but much harder in terms of getting him out.

Don't worry, Sonic. I'll get you out yet. I turn off the map and put it in my quills before trying to step out. There don't seem to be that many SWATbots around here, but I still have to be careful. I walk up to the building, and if my eyes aren't deceiving me, there seems to be a grate at the very top of the building, right where Eggman's floor is… I just need to find a place to climb… Ha! This is a joke! There are footholds on the building that are perfect to climb on. Surely Eggman doesn't want people to sneak in, so why, then, did he make it so damn easy?

I grab onto the footholds and start climbing up the building with nearly no effort. I eventually make it to the top, thanking God and Professor Gerald that I'm not afraid of heights. I look up, and only an inch above my head is a grate opening up into, most likely, a vent system. The Doctor sure didn't think things through when he made this tower. It's as if he wants somebody to sneak in here, and knowing him, that is a possibility, but I can't worry about that now. I have to focus on the mission.

I reach up, pull the grate out, and drop it before I climb in. I crawl a couple yards into the vent before I once again pull the map out of my quills. I guess Tails was smart and put an extremely accurate GPS in here, because it knows exactly where I am. Why am I saying that like I'm surprised? I shouldn't be. I'm near the very edge of the building, and I'm right above… Eggman's control room. Shit. If he hears me, I'm done for. I have to keep quiet.

I put the map away and continue crawling, making sure not to drag my shoes on the metal beneath me. Soon, I make it to a vent, and through it I can see Eggman sitting near his many screens. As I hover over the grated vent, he seems to see something on the screens, although I can only tell that from his facial expression. I can't see the screens.

"Oh, where's Shadow? I saw him leave the forest, but… where the hell did that Ultimate Lifeform go?" He pauses for a few seconds. "Oh, well, it's no big deal. It's not like he could get in anywhere important." And he pauses yet again. "Bathroom time…" I hear him whisper as he gets up and walks out of the room. I let out the breath that I didn't even know I was holding and lift the grate out before squeezing through it and quickly getting against a wall. I scan for cameras, but there aren't any… Apparently, he doesn't expect people to sneak in this high up.

I go in the same direction that the Doctor did and see a short hallway with four other doors. One of them has just closed, and I assume that's the bathroom. I walk down to the one at the end of the hall, which I assume is Sonic's cell, and there's a voiceprinted lock on the wall. Damn… And I can't talk without being noticed… I am able to imitate the Doctor's voice, but that won't help here.

In only a few seconds, I hear the toilet flush, and I quickly run back into the control room before hiding in a place where I can still see what's going on. Eggman comes out of the bathroom and walks over to the door I was just at and says to it, "This is Doctor Eggman. Open this door."

"Voiceprint recognized as Doctor Ivo 'Eggman' Robotnik. Door opening." The door opens, and Eggman walks in there. I sneak over to the door and peek around the corner to see the Doctor standing in front of…

"Rise and shine, Sonic! Today's the day you're going to be roboticized! Come on, up and at 'em! This is a day to be excited for!"

The Blue Blur sits up from the most likely uncomfortable bed he's laying in… God, he looks horrible… His normally bright cobalt pelt is now nearly unsaturated, and his colorful emerald eyes seem to have lost all life. The quills on the back of his head that used to be straightened back by the sheer force of running now droop. And his figure… Well, his stomach's definitely seen better days… I can see his ribs, for Chaos' sake… and his legs look incredibly weak. He looks only like a shadow of what he was… but he's alive. I was right all along.

"Shut up, Egghead." He sounds so… bitter… but I suppose being in a place like this for eight months could do that… "Let's just get this over with and not dillydally. Take me down there and don't make such a big fuss about it."

"Someone's in an especially harsh mood today. Have you finally given up hope that Shadow will come to your rescue, 'princess'?"

"I'm not a damn woman, Robotnik, and no, I haven't given up hope. He's gonna come, whether it's after or before I'm roboticized. He said he loves me, and even if that wasn't true, I know that he and Tails are good enough friends of mine that one of them would come to save me."

"The famous Sonic the Hedgehog depending entirely on his friends… That seems terribly out of character for you."

"Well, what else am I supposed to do? I can't escape. Not with the shape I'm in."

The Doctor chuckles. "I suppose you are correct." He walks over and helps the hedgehog out of the bed, and the two of them walk over to one of the doors, and Eggman opens it to reveal an elevator. After the two of them walk through it, and when it goes down, everything that just transpired sinks into my mind. "Today's the day. I have to hurry."

I understand I'm taking a huge risk by doing what I'm about to do, but I have to. I must. I spindash right into the elevator door, destroying it, and I expect an alarm to go off, but nothing happens. Talk about cheap security. The elevator is still going, but it soon stops way down low. I grab onto one of the steel cables and slide down it, making my way down.

Once I'm there, I make sure nothing's in the elevator before opening the emergency hatch and exiting through the elevator itself. I'm only feet behind them now, but I have to be careful. I stick to the shadows as much as I can, avoiding the seeing-eye robots that patrol the halls.

Soon enough, the two of them stop by a door, and the Doctor once again opens it with his voice, but before I can make it over there, the door closes with both of them in there. "Fuck… This is not good…" I didn't even hear what he said to open the door. Did he say the same thing that he did upstairs?

"How does it feel when you're about to become a robot?" I can hear Eggman on the other side of the door, but just barely. I'm guessing he already has Sonic in the machine. Goddammit. I say what the Doctor said earlier into the voiceprinted lock, making sure to imitate his voice the best I can, and the door opens. What I see is Eggman pressing a button, and Sonic's left arm is starting to become metal as he screams in pain.

"Sh-Sh-Shadow?!" exclaims Robotnik.

"Damn you, Doctor!" I shoot a Chaos Spear at his control terminal as powerfully as I can, and then I run over, grab Sonic, and get the hell out of that room.

"Shad… Sh-Sh… Shadow… I… I knew you'd come…" He sounds so tired… That machine must take more out of someone that it seems…

"Of course, faker. Now let's get you out of here." I rush out of the building fast enough that the doctor's robots can't hope to catch me, and I find an old and dilapidated stone building to take shelter in for now, because both Sonic and I are exhausted.

I set Sonic down on the ground leaning against a wall before I sit down on his right side. Before I know it, he lays his head on my shoulder and grabs my hand. "Thanks…" he mumbles before he closes his eyes and quickly dozes off.

"You're welcome, Sonic…" and I close my eyes as well…

Well, how was it? I seriously hope you guys all liked it! You've all been waiting a long time for this chapter, and you're probably glad it's up. Well, I will hopefully see you guys again soon! Till next time!

-Tails Luv-er