Love is Shell (formerly titled For Love of Mike)

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Love is Shell (formerly titled For Love of Mike)

MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

03 Jun 2010, 07:12 #1

Well, it had to happen sooner or later. I have been mulling it over, and finally decided "what the Hey". So I've blown the dust off of a tale I penned- well, okay, typed on my first typewriter- back in middle school, and I'm presenting it here, only SLIGHTLY edited for mistakes and a bit of improvement. Coming soon- TMNT! And fair warning, this is a mature-content story. Read at your own risk, folks!
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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Joined: 27 Nov 2007, 17:07

03 Jun 2010, 09:33 #2

Sweet! I`ll be looking for it Ducks!!
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MsMarvelDuckie
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Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

04 Jun 2010, 19:42 #3

Might have some up tonight. It's going to be weird to dust this off. I feel like I'm about to start reading my diary over a loudspeaker, lol!
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

06 Jun 2010, 23:43 #4

Okay, so here it goes. As I mentioned before, this is a mature-content tale, and is not nearly as polished as my current stuff, due to my age at the time of wriing- but, have fun!


Love is Shell

Pt 1: A Strange Encounter


I suppose I should start at the beginning. That souns odd, but really, where else does one start? I'm not sure how they found me, but I guess I ought to beglad they did. Especially since it changed the course of my life forever. And for the better- at least I like to think so.

It was one of those late December evenings, right after Christmas. The 27th, to be specific. I was walking home in a foot of snow from my part-time job at Channel 6, and since it was cold and very late at night, I wanted to get home as soon as possible. I never did like New York at night.

I was just passing a dark alley when suddenly, out of the shadows, three big- and quite fankly, ugly- men came at me. The biggest one grabbed me, and holding me down on the frozen ground, began tearing at my clothes, while the other two pawed through my purse. They all leered darkly, and I tried to scream even while he was unzipping his own patched jeans. Just as he had managed to yank mine down, a hand tapped the ugly brute on the shoulder.

"Excuse me, but don't you think there are better ways to get a date?" said a rather young-sounding male voice. In fact, he sounded like he had not yet even left pubrty behind.

"What's it to ya?" answered the thug, getting up. He tossed me toward his companions, and all three stared into the darkness looking for the interloper.

"I don't think it would be wise to try to take us on," remarked another voice, somewhat higher. What was this, I wondered- a rescue by the acne patrol? Then again, who was I to complain?

"Yeah, it would be like- real dumb." The third speaker's voice was deeper, and reminded me of some surfer beach-bum. Okay, scratch that, I thought- the California acne patrol. Were these guys really serious? He also sounded much closer, though I still could see no more than my would-be attackers.

Then I felt a strong hand pulling me away from the nearest thug, with a grunt from the brute that told me he had just received a punch in the gut. I quickly got my clothes back into proper place, and moved over to the nearest wall, still straining to see my saviors.

Meanwhile, my attackers were running off like they had just seen ghosts, which wasn't too far from the truth. But of course, I still did not know that. However, I was about to find out.

Finally, I called out into the shadows, hoping that my rescuers were not actually gosts after all. I might have wished they WERE a few econds later, if I had known... "I- I'd like to thank you for helping me," I said, finally regaining some composure. "But where are you? I can't see a thing!"

"That's the idea," said someone else. This voice was new, and sounded a bit sarcastic. Four? Just how many of them WERE there?

"By the way, who are you?" I asked, curious. I noticed there had been no real answer to my first question.

"Just some concerned citizens," answered the one who had spoken first. "And who are you?"

"Uh, my name is Orlene," I answered, wondering why they were being so cagey. Were these guys hiding something? "Orlene McCann. Pleased to meet you?" I said uncertainly.

"Sure, nice to meet you too," replied the one with the highest voice. Definitely teen-agers, I decided.

Then the one who had pulled me from the goons stepped into a patch of light. It was enough to make me have a heart attack! Suddenly, as it dawned on me what these four guys were, I fainted...



To be continued....

Edited for errors....
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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Joined: 27 Nov 2007, 17:07

10 Jun 2010, 22:23 #5

Very nice beginning!
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

11 Jun 2010, 06:28 #6

Thanks! I'll have more up a bit later. It feels weird posting this for some reason. Maybe it's all he ribbing I got from the hubby after he read it.
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

16 Jun 2010, 22:47 #7

Okay, here we go again. Hope this isn't too cheesy.


I woke several hours later- at least it seemed that way- in a strange place. I was lying on a rather tattered old couch in a large room, with solid brick walls. There were no windows anywehere, but there was a sturdy steel door along one side of the room, and a grate in the ceiling. The door was partially open; the sound of dripping water came from somewhere beyond. And that smell... I looked around the room, and saw a huge pipeline that had been blocked off leading from one part of the room.

"I must be in the sewers!" I said to myself in surprise, realizing where the stench was coming from. I gaped at the room, taking in the mostly bare walls, the cold, damp air, and the second-hand- or was it third- furniture.

"Like, no duh, man," said a voice from behind me. I whirled around and came face-to-face with the owner of said voice. I screamed. What else could I do? He was short- no more than five feet, surely- bald, and GREEN. I jumped up onto the rickety coffee table, but soon realized that it made a poor sancutary, then made a dash for the door- only to see another of the freaksih-looking creatures standing there. I know it might seem like harsh words to use, but what else would you call them? They stood upright like human beings, but they had round heads with no semblance of a nose, only three thick digits, and large shells on their backs. In fact, they looked like...

"You- you're t-t-turtles!" I stammered out, as the realization hit me all over again. I gulped, and backed away from the door. This was too much weirdness. The second one stared at me almost curiously, but said nothing.

"Boy, we're looking at a real mind here," I glanced toward the door, and saw yet another turtle, this one with an oddly sarcastic lexpression. a fourth followed him in, and I sank back down on the old sofa, having become convinced that it was either a dream or some strange alternate reality. Clearly, I had lost my mind.

"Michealangelo, Raphael! Be quiet. you are frightening the poor child." I slowly turned to look at the last one to enter, and almost wished I hadn't.

It was a huge rat, and by that I mean a GIANT rat, almost as tall as the four turtles. And why was he wearing a kimono? The insane thought came unbidden to mind. He sat down on a recliner near the couch, and I was suddenly aware that all of them were staring at me. As if I was the strange one.

At last, I managed a weak, "Wh- who are you?" This was rating about as high as an alien invasion on my freak-o-meter.

"I am called Splinter. These are my sons. We live here, under the city, and I have trained them as ninjas. Please, intro duce yourselves, my sons." The rat replied. He sounded a little old, for he had that sort of wise quality to his tone that only old people ever have.
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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Joined: 27 Nov 2007, 17:07

17 Jun 2010, 09:21 #8

It`s very cool Ducks, considering your age when you wrote it! I remember my one nephew was HUGE into the TMNT so I know a bit about them. I`m enjoying the telling a great deal!
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MsMarvelDuckie
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Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

17 Jun 2010, 18:12 #9

Thanks! I was hoping it would not be too corny or whatever.
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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Joined: 27 Nov 2007, 17:07

18 Jun 2010, 09:22 #10

It`s a very nice, light read!
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

22 Jun 2010, 15:55 #11

*snickers* Yeah, for now.... It does get kinda weird though.
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

20 Jan 2011, 06:31 #12

And..... Onward!!



"I am Leonardo," said the first one, stepping forward to give a polite bow. I recognized his voice from the alley encounter. He wore a blue mask over his eyes, and I briefly wondered why a turtle would need a mask, but didn't ask.

"I'm Donatello," said the next with a warm smile, coming up beside his fellow turtle. His mask was purple, and his voice was higher. Younger, maybe? Then again, who could tell?

The third simply leaned casually against a wall, and gave a half-assed salute. "Yo, Raphael's the name," he said. I decided he must be the one with the attitude, and was proven right when his discourteous remark earned him a glare from the rat. He was in red. I was starting to notice a pattern of sorts.

Then the last one came forward, and gave me a grin as he introduced himself. "Uh, I'm Michealangelo, but you can call me Mikey. Everyone else does," he said, and winked at me. I wondered what it meant, but shelved the question for later. He wore orange, and he struck me as the laid-back one from before. I wondered why they were all named after painters, but decided it really didn't matter.

"Now you know who we are; and who might you be?" Asked the rat in a polite and curious tone. Then the one named Leonardo spoke up.

"Her name's Orlene, Master Splinter. She mentioned it last night. That is, before SOMEONE blew our cover by letting himself be seen!" He glared at the one in orange, and got a sheepish cringe in response. He seemed to be the one in charge, as if he was the leader.

"Sorry, dude, I didn't know she could see me!" replied the accused.

"Excuse, me, but I CAN speak for myself, you know," I interrupted, annoyed. They were talking as if I wasn't even in the room, which was highly annoying.

"Uh, sorry," apologized Leonardo.

"I'm really grateful to you all for saving me," I said after a moment, realizing it might be a bad idea to annoy these- what exactly WERE they, anyway? "Oh, and I'm pleased to meet you," I continued. Under my breath, I added, "I think." Only the rat seemed to catch the last part, for he smiled and chuckled softly to himself.

"That reminds me, I think she should stay here for a while, Master," said the one called Donatello. "She probably shouldn't be alone right now, and it's safer down here," he continued.

"Perhaps you are right, my son," replied the rat. Splinter, I corrected myself mentally. Then I realized I was giving names to hallucinations, and decided I really HAD lost my mind.

"N- No!! Oh, no- there's no need for me to stay!" I protested, jumping up, even though it made me slightly dizzy. Had I hit my head during the attack? Or was I just dreaming all of this? "I- I wouldn't want to be a burden on anyone. Besides, I have to go home and feed my cat!" Okay, so I was just frantically searching for an excuse to leave. ANY excuse. This was all just too much!

"Hmm, she's right," said Leonardo. Was it a bad sign that I was already learning their names? I wondered. I was even starting to get used to the smell. "I mean, what if she has a job? She might get fired for not going," he went on. "Maybe we should just take her home."

"Typical, Leo- always thinking responsibly." Chided the one in red. Raphael- that was it. What was his problem, anyway? I wondered.

"Yeah, guess I wasn't thinking," said Donatello with a shrug.

"Heh, THAT'S a switch," Raphael joked with a smirk. He was definitely the snarky one of the bunch. Which left the other one- Mikey, he had called himself- who had been strangely quiet.

But the talk had reminded me of a very important detail- they had said I'd been there all night! "That reminds me, what time is it?" I asked worriedly. Speaking of jobs.....

"Um, a little after ten," Michaelangelo said, looking at his watch. Why would a turtle need a watch? Okay, this was REALLY weird. For that matter, why didn't they wear any clothes? Didn't they ever get cold in winter? Not to mention the issue of decency.... On second thought, best not to even think about that.
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

24 Jan 2011, 07:16 #13

This is just a quick bump up for this one- since I've FINALLY gotten around to adding to it.....
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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Joined: 27 Nov 2007, 17:07

28 Jan 2011, 10:14 #14

This is very cute Ducks.
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MsMarvelDuckie
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Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

28 Jan 2011, 18:47 #15

Thanks! It's a bit corny and juvenile at times, but also deals with some serious issues later on. I remember it was very cathartic to write at the time I did this. Teen-age issues and escapism poured out onto the pages of my typewriter. Yeah! And so much cheaper than a therapist, [goof] :lol3: ;) :P
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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Joined: 27 Nov 2007, 17:07

30 Jan 2011, 10:26 #16

Writing does that for us, it gives us an outlet.
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

31 Jan 2011, 16:40 #17

:lollol:
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

21 Nov 2012, 05:27 #18

Okay, this is a while in coming, but- what can you do, eh? Last time I worked on it, I was still staying with my folks, and the pages got misplaced in the move afterward. Finally dug them back out again, SOOOO....




""Oh, no! I should have been at the station hours ago! April is probably wondering what happened to me, and my boss is going to KILL me!" I exclaimed in a panic. I had only been an intern at the news station for a few weeks, and now I was sure to be fired. I searched around frantically for my cell phone, but didn't see it. For that matter, what had happened to my purse? "Anyone seen my purse? I have to call the station!" I asked, desperate.

"Station?" "Did you say April?" "Is that like, Grand Central, or like, CNN?" "Hey Donnie, where did you put it? We brought it here, but Donatello had it last." Four voices started talking at once; it was confusing, to say the least. I latched onto the statement from the one named Leonardo, who had at least mentioned my purse.

"Where is it?" I asked turning to the one in purple. He pointed over to a small table in a corner, and wonder of wonders, there it sat. I dashed over and began pawing through it for my phone. It wasn't there.

"You didn't see a cell phone last night, did you?" I asked, glancing from one to another. Four little green men all frowned sadly and shook their heads. I had just about decided they were Martians. They HAD to be, to look like that, didn't they? Little green turtle-men from Mars.... A new thought occured that perhaps I'd taken a harder hit than I'd thought, and was now in some Twilight Zone dreamworld. Or New Jersey- I'd heard some pretty strange people lived there....

"Did you mean April O'Neil? The reporter?" The one named Leonardo prompted, looking at me expectantly.

"Well- yes, why?" I asked, wondering how they had heard of her. Did turtles watch the news? Well, color me amazed. I would have pegged them as fans of badly-dubbed Japanese B-movies. Godzilla or Rodan, maybe.

"Do you know her?" Raphael suddenly perked up, staring at me strangely. In fact, they all had incredulously astonished looks, like maybe I was the Second Coming.

I nodded, not quite sure what to say. "Yeah, she's sort of my mentor while I'm doing my internship," I said uncertainly, wondering why they were suddenly so interested in a news reporter. Then again, for all I knew, they might just have some sort of fan-boy crush on her. Which would be weird, but who was I to judge?

"Huh. Small world, eh guys?" Raphael snorted, smirking again. I was starting to think that was his default expression. "She's a friend of ours. Funny, but she never mentioned you," He continued.

I stared back at him skeptically. "Yeah, and I'm personal friends with the Pope," I retorted, matching his usual tone. His eyes narrowed for a moment, realizing that he had just been mocked, but his return comment was cut off by the one named Leonardo.

"No, it's true. We've known her for a couple of years now. Why don't you ask her sometime?" The others all nodded in assent, and I was left wondering how in Hades name she could know about four giant talking turtles living in the sewers and never tell anyone. Then again, considering how crazy it sounded, I certainly didn't want to tell anyone!

"Well, I'm pretty sure I'd have remembered if she'd mentioned you guys," I said, looking around the room at the four. And then there was the rat. He was still sitting there, listening to the conversation, but had said nothing. I glanced over at those beady eyes watching me with keen intellect, those whiskers twitching at me curiously, and suppressed a shudder.

"Miss O'Neil has agreed to keep our existance a secret from the outside world out of gratitude. My sons have saved her life many times when her work put her into danger." The rat said it so matter-of-factly that I knew it was the truth. Besides, he seemd like the no-nonsense type, unlike the room's four reptilian occupants.

I sat down, feeling depressed now that I had lost my cell. Now I had no way to call work and explain my absense- not that I COULD explain any of this- and probably no job. "Well, this is just peachy," I muttered. "I'm down in a sewer with a bunch of carnival side-show attractions with no phone to call the real world or even snap a photo to prove it happened!"

Then I felt eyes on me, and it wasn't just the rat. Splinter, I reminded myself again, though why I felt the need to memorize their names was anyone's guess. I looked around, and realized that one of them had been strangely silent during the last few minutes. The one in orange- Michaelangelo, or Mikey as he had called himself- was leaning on the arm of the sofa, with a sketchpad in one hand, and a pencil in the other, scratching away and glancing at me every few seconds. I scooted closer to see what he was doing, craning my neck to look.

"What is that?" I asked, curious.

"It's nothin much. Just doodling. What do ya think?" He shrugged and smiled shyly, and turned it for me to look. It was a sketch of me sitting on the couch, but it was anything but a doodle. I was genuinely surprised to discover that he was as good as any professional artist I'd ever seen.

"You pay a lot of attention to detail," I said appreciatively, gazing thoughtfully at the work for a moment. "You did this in just a few minutes? I like the shadows there, and how you even included the tears in the pattern on the sofa. The edges are a little fuzzy- was that intentional?"

"Whoa, dudette! I just asked for an opinion, not an art review! Can't a guy get a straight answer?" He seemed slightly frustrated, or maybe nervous. Maybe he had never actually met someone who apprecaited his talent before.

"Well," I protested, "you asked for my opinion and you got it. I think it's very good." He practically beamed at that, and somehow I felt better for having made him happy. I decided that this chilled would-be surfer-dude might have more to him than was apparent at first glance. Little did I know....
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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Joined: 26 Nov 2007, 16:50

21 Nov 2012, 15:07 #19

How did I over look this!!!!

Very well done!!! Don't stop! Lol. Not many TMNT stories around.
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

21 Nov 2012, 21:44 #20

Thanks! It's been a while since I was able to add to this one, but expect to see more. Oh, and please use the comments thread, to help keep the stories from getting cluttered with commentary.
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

22 Nov 2012, 05:42 #21

After a bit of discussion, it was decided that I should remain there for the rest of the day. Fortunately, my new acquaintances had their own phone- I had to wonder why a bunch of giant turtles would need one, and who would they talk to?- and they even had the number for Channel Six, which lent an odd credence to their claim of knowing April. I still had a hard time believing that they were friends of my mentor, but I couldn't exactly refute the possibility, either. I told my boss that I'd lost my phone on the way to the doctor after getting sick, and though Mr. Pennington yelled a bit, I somehow managed to keep my job. Then I called April and told her to meet me after work, because I had a BIG surprise for her.

I spent the next few hours getting to know my new friends. After the initial shock, I discovered that, appearances aside, they were actually fairly normal- at least if one can call five-foot humanoid reptiles normal. I learned that they had once been ordinary pet shop turtles, dropped into the sewer by accident and exposed to a radioactive mutagenic goop. And I'd thought MY childhood sucked... Turns out, Splinter was once the beloved pet of a ninja Master, and had watched him practice his art until the fateful day his owner had been killed, and he had been left homeless to fend for himself. After ending up in the sewers, doused by the same green ooze that had transformed his four "sons", he too had undergone a strange and miraculous change. I decided then and there that my first major report once I got my break would be about the appalling state of New York's sanitation system.

I met April several hours later, in the subway station on 35th street, not far from my apartment. "Hi, April! Sorry I missed work today, but you'll never believe what happened to me!" I said, strolling toward the tunnel.

"So what's the big surprise you were talking about?" She asked, following me to the end of the platform. She looked a little confused when I started to slide along the narrow ledge beside the tracks.

"Come on, and I'll show you!" I said, motioning her to follow. She looked around curiously, but finally did so. When we'd gone far enough from the platform, and came to a small maintainence junction, I called out cautiously. "Hey guys, you can come out now!"

Almost as if by magic, four shapes came out of the shadows, revealing the four mutant terrapins. "Hi, April! Bet you didn't expect to see US!" Michaelangelo said with a laugh. All four were grinning ear to ear. Or they would have been, if they'd had ears.

"Guys?! What are YOU doing here?!" She exclaimed, astonished.

"Oh, we rescued Orlene here last night while we were going out for pizza. She got jumped by some thugs on her way home. We heard a scream and came runniing. That's when we found her. Then Mikey had to go and show himself, and she fainted, so we had to take her to the lair." Leonardo explained, glaring at his brother.

I did a double-take at his mention of pizza. For some reason I hadn't considered what they might eat. "Pizza? You eat pizza?!" I asked incredulous.

"Sure, doesn't everybody?" Raphael replied, puzzled.

I gave him a confused look, and shrugged. "Well, I just thought maybe you guys ate lettuce or something. That reminds me, I'm starving! What do you boys have to eat?"

"Pizza! What else?!" April and the four turtles said in unison, laughing.

"Ask a stupid question," I remarked wryly, rolling my eyes. They just snickered, and we all headed back to their lair.

We spent the rest of the night back in their underground home. By now, I was starting to ignore the smell, which really wasn't so bad. They lived in a part of the sewer that had been closed off from use for years; apparently the city had decided that repairing the section of pipes and tunnels was too expensive, and had instead elected to block it off from the rest.

I was surprised to discover that they were quite the party animals, though I suppose I shouldn't have been. We ate pizza, played video games and charades, listened to music, joked around, and danced until late into the night. Ever the patient and understanding teacher and parent, Splinter had gone off to meditate alone after a simple dinner of rice and sushi, leaving the rest of us to enjoy the evening. Michaelangelo turned out to be quite the dancer, and did a few impressions as well. I had never had so much fun in my life! Even April got in on the fun, and we laughed, talked, and dnaced until the wee hours, when we all just fell asleep wherever we happened to sit.

Thus ended my first day of knowing those wild and crazy dudes. I was only a year older than Leonardo, who was the oldest at eighteen, the others being a year younger. As strange as it seemed, I no longer even thought of them as monsters or freaks; in spite of their unusual origins, they were like any other ordinary teens, having fun and enjoying life like anyone else. So what if they were green, cold-blooded, and had no hair? They cracked jokes, razzed each other, and had their favorite movies and songs, just like teens everywhere. I felt comfortable with them, strange as that might seem. Like I'd known them for years. Even then, I knew it was the beginning of something special.
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

09 Dec 2012, 03:53 #22

The Morning After



I woke the next morning with a kink in my neck, trying to remember where I was. Then I looked around, and it all came flooding back to me. I was curled up on the couch in the turtles’ lair, but they were gone. By now, I had mostly gotten used to the scent of eau de’ sewage, and even the relative coldness of the place. I didn’t even think it was all that strange that I felt comfortable in such peculiar surroundings. I did, however, wonder why I was alone.

“Where are they?” I said to myself, a habit I’ve picked up over the years from spending most of my childhood entertaining myself in my room alone. Come to think of it, April was gone too. And I knew Splinter was still in his room, since the door was closed and I could hear Japanese flute music playing softly. A reminder of his former home, apparently. “Where the devil IS everyone?” I exclaimed in consternation.

As if in answer, there came a sound from outside the door, as of several feet splashing through water. Worried that it might be some sanitation maintenance worker about to stumble upon my new friends’ home, I looked around quickly, and found one of Leo’s katana and stood with it raised above my head, just behind the door as it swung open. I was just about to bring it down to scare the “intruder”, when I stopped short. I had just come face-to-face with a very startled Michelangelo.

“Oops! Sorry guys, I thought someone might have found this place,” I apologized. Michelangelo just stood there, with a wide-eyed stare of surprise.

“That’s alright,” Raphael snorted, stepping around his speechless brother. “We’ve done that to April a few times, too. Sometimes I think she’s lucky we haven’t turned her into a human pincushion!”

“I heard that, Raph!” April chided, coming in behind him. I just shook my head and laughed, handing the sword back to Leo as he entered. Donatello was the last one in, his nose buried in some sort of technical manual. They all dispersed to their own separate diversions, with Leo and Raphael going over to sit on the sofa and watch some cartoons, while Donnie, as they affectionately called him, started tinkering with an old radio. I looked around for Mikey, only to find him scribbling furiously on his sketch pad again. I wandered over to see what it was this time. It was me again, this time with Leo’s katana coming down.

“Making a record of my follies?” I asked jokingly.

“Nah, you just make a good subject,” he said, grinning. “You’ve got great lines!”

I almost did a double-take at that. Had he just been flirting? I shook the thought aside, and instead asked the question which had been on my mind since waking. “Where were you all, anyway?”

“We went out for breakfast,” Donatello said around a pencil between his teeth.

“Why didn’t someone wake me up?” I asked, as I suddenly realized I was hungry. My stomach growled in agreement. “And where did you get breakfast? You four DO kind of stand out, no offence.”

“Eh, none taken,” Leo said from in front of the television. “We got doughnuts. We sent April in for ‘em, so it’s all good. Anyway, you looked so peaceful, we decided to let you sleep. Don’t worry, we brought some back for you.” He nudged Raph, who pulled a paper sack from his belt and tossed it to me.

April fell onto the recliner with a loud sigh. “Thank goodness I have today off. Vernon’s been a bigger pain than usual lately!” It was no secret around the news station that she and Vernon Thompson were rivals for the best scoops, and he was the type to take any advantage he could get. April despised him for his occasionally unscrupulous methods, not to mention his constant preening.

“Lucky you.,” I said, digging into the bag of pastries. Somehow, the turtles had managed to get my favorite doughnuts- frosted blueberry, and chocolate-covered éclairs. I suspected April was the source of that intell. “I volunteered for doggie-bath duty at the animal shelter today. I do NOT relish spending the rest of the day smelling like wet dog! And on a Saturday, too!” It was a good cause, but I usually spent my time there working with the homeless cats, playing with them, giving medication to the ones that needed it, and just giving them attention. I had a soft spot for small furry things.

“What’s wrong with helping your fellow creatures?” asked Leo, puzzled. “Don’t you like animals?”

“Sure, why else would I go volunteer there? I’m just not thrilled with the prospect of SMELLING like them! Some of those dogs are not exactly squeaky clean and April-fresh!” I sniggered, wrinkling my nose. “Then again, I guess it’s no worse than smelling like a sewer.”
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

25 Dec 2012, 23:18 #23

"Was that a not-so-subtle dig?" Raph shot back, his eyes narropwed slightly.

I sniggered, with a mouth full of sweet, frosted blueberry goodness, and gave him n exaggerated, innocent shrug. When I swallowed it, I chuckled and said, "Well, you gotta admit, it's not exactly spring-time fresh down here. How do you guys stand it? I'd have to buy stock in Febreeze and Lysol to live here! Which reminds me, I should probably get home and take a quick shower. Somehow I don't think I could explain the eau de' sewer scent to the folks at the shelter."

April piped up then, and stretched. "Orlene, when do you have to be there? I'd be happy to drop you off at your place. I've got some errands to run anyway." She was like that- always doing things for her friends. It was one of the things I admired about her. She wasn't like some of the other journalists I'd met, stuck-up and ruthless, like Vernon. A little pushy at times, maybe, but that was just part of the job. I had learned a lot from her.

"Thanks! I've still got a couple of hours. I don't have to be there 'til noon." I said, yawning. I finished off the rest of the doughnuts, and for the next couple of hours, we just hung out with the boys. It was kind of fun hearing their stories about the things they had done, like Mikey getting shrunk or having his favorite superhero come to life from a comic book, or Raph's would-be career as a comedian, or having his mind get switched with a cab driver's. Donnie talked about meeting an alien, and the time he had cloned himself- which had apparently gone terribly wrong- and his ill-fated attempt to get a college degree. Even Leo had some strange stories to tell. His brothers had once tried to give him a new personality when they decided he was getting too bossy; and there was Lotus, a female ninja he had met and had feelings for- that part surprised me, but I thought it best not to ask the obvious question of how a human and a turtle could have any sort of relationship- and his encounter with a fake UFO in a small upstate town.

Compared to them, my life had seemed spectacularly dull. That is, until I told them about witnessing the murder of my parents two years earlier. That certainly got their attention. It had happened while I was still in high schoo; I'd come home early one day after getting sick, and found the door to our townhouse open. That alone was enough to rouse my suspicions, so I had slipped in quietly, only to hear voices in the living room- someone was threatening my parents, about some government project they were working on. I peeked inside, and saw the entire place was trashed, with my folks tied to two of the chairs from the dining room. There was some weirdo in a metal helmet and cape, with spiked armor on his arms, hands, and shoulders standing over them. They refused to tell him what he wanted, and just like that, he had swiped his metal claws across their throats. I just turned and ran out of the house, and hid behind a dumpster between two buildings across the street until the cops had arrided more than an hour later. But I had not forgotten that tall, menacing figure in the spiked suit- or his voice.

"Wait a sec! The guy you described sounds like Shredder!" Leo exclaimed, sitting up suddenly.

"Who?" I asked, baffled. Somehow I had a mental image of a human cheese grater.

"He's only our worst enemy," replied Leo sourly. "He used to be a rival of Master Splinter's owner. They were both members of an ancient ninja clan until Shre- er, Uruku Saki- that's his name- was disgraced for attempting to assassinate their Grandmaster. But he's hated us and Master Splinter for years, because of all the times we've stopped his schemes to take over the city."

"Ya got THAT right," Raph chimed in, shaking a fist. "Man, I'd love to get my hands on that creep."

Just then, there was a news flash on the television, about a theft at a major chemical factory in Queens. Someone had made off with an experimental hydrogen fuel, that was supposed to be powerful enough to drive a car to the moon and back on a single tank. Almost like magic, all four mutants shot up and dashed for their weapons.

"What's going on?" I asked, confused. Even April was on her feet, as they all piled toward the door.

"I'll bet old tin-grin had something to do with this," Leo said, looking angry. The others all nodded agreement, and I had a distinctly uneasy feeling, seeing the dark expressions on their faces. I started to get an idea of why the thugs who had attacked me had run off in terror. When they got angry, these guys were truly SCARY!

"I'm coming with you guys," April said, and no one argued. "I'm not going to let Vern scoop me on this! No way am I letting him keep me from getting another story!" She was fuming. Then again, as many times as he had used underhanded tactics to sneak a news story out from under her, I didn't blame her. He made news reporters look bad. And he was pretty sleazy, too. I'd learned that the hard way....

"Too late, April," quipped Raph. "He already did!" She just tossed him a dirty look, and he backed down.

I don't know why, but I decided right then that I had to find out for myself if the man they called Shredder really WAS behind the theft. When I'd told the police what I'd seen, they had thought I was crazy, or that I'd been too distraught to remember clearly. But I knew what I'd seen that day. And I wasn't going to just stand by while my new friends took on a cold-blooded killer.

"I'm going too," I said suddenly, right behind Donnie. As one, four green heads swiveled to stare at me.

"I'm not sure that's a good idea," Leo said. "You'd just be in the way. We can't get in there to check it out and keep an eye on you, too."

"Aw, come on, Leo! Lighten up!" Mikey protested, I was a little surprised to hear him defending me. But he stared his brother down boldly. "She can stay with April, and he's probably long gone, so it's not like she'd be in danger. And it'll give her a chance to see how we work," he said, shrugging.

"He's right," said Donatello. "What harm could it do?" I waited, and at last, the unofficial leader of the group sighed and nodded.

"Okay, fine. Just stay with April, and if we find anything, we'll let you know."

"Thanks!" I said, and soundly gave all four a quick peck on their beaks. Leo shook his head in annoyance, and I could almost swear Mikey was blushing.
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

30 Dec 2012, 07:43 #24

“You won’t regret this,” I continued, as we trudged through the tunnel outside their lair, splashing through the occasional puddles of stagnant, murky water. I tried hard not to think what might be in that water, as we made our way through an access tunnel that ended in a ladder below a large grate that opened into an abandoned garage. Parked inside was an old VW van- or at least it had been, in its previous life. What it was now was more akin to a mobile tracking station and high-tech lab. Where and how Donatello- I knew it had been him without being told- had managed to cobble together the equipment was a question I wasn’t sure I wanted to know the answer to, but I was impressed all the same.

We drove to the factory, parking the conspicuous van on a side street and making our way to the site on foot. As expected, the police and the media were already there, including the Channel Six news crew. I wondered how the four boys were going to get inside to investigate, but a soft scraping sound high above on the roof made me look up, just in time to see four shapes stealthily creeping along on top of the factory. That answers that, I thought, as April and I went over to the news van. She gave Vern a stern lecture about journalistic ethics, while I helped the camera-operator with his equipment.

A short time later, April had used her press credentials to get us both inside, presumably to film the scene and interview some of the chemical engineers who had worked on the formula. Once inside, I kept getting an odd feeling of eyes watching me, and it wasn’t long before I spotted a familiar shadow inside a large vent near the ceiling. I glanced around, and discovered three more all around the factory’s lab, close enough to hear April’s questions to the engineers, but still well-hidden. I belatedly remembered Splinter’s words about training them as ninjas, and was amazed at how easily they had managed to sneak in.

By the time April and I got back to the van, they were already there waiting for us. I was surprised at how fast they could move- which was doubly impressive if one considered the typical speed of a turtle. Then again, the hare had underestimated the tortoise, too…

“Well, guys, what do you think? You heard what those chemists had to say,” April said, when they had dropped down right in front of us as we approached the vehicle. I stifled a startled yelp, but she acted as if it was a normal occurrence.

“Y’know, I’m beginning to wonder if tin-grin stole that fuel after all,” said Donnie, frowning.

Leo nodded. “He’s right, guys. There should have been evidence that he was here- it was too clean.” He agreed.

“What do you mean?” I asked. “Didn’t you say he was a ninja Master?” I was a little disappointed that we hadn’t seen anything; I’d been hoping to get a lead on the man who had murdered my family. Two years, and nothing. The police had never found the killer, and the case sat cold, leaving me with too many unanswered questions.

“If it was him, there should have been a hole nearby from one of those transport modules of his, or at least some sign of entry. Maybe this was one of those inside things?” Donatello suggested.

I sighed and wandered back toward the news van, when something caught my eye. I noticed some odd scratches cut into a power pole at various intervals, consisting of sets of three deep marks- like claws. I looked up, and saw a small scrap of something fluttering from a line-man’s climbing spikes about halfway to the top. Coincidentally, the pole was close to the roof of the factory, just where I’d seen the four shell-backs tiptoeing earlier. It suddenly dawned on me that this might be exactly what they were looking for, and I raced back to where they’d parked the garish yellow van.

“Hey, guys! I think I found something!” I said, excited. “Could he have gotten in the same way you did?”

“Shread-head? Doesn’t seem like his style. He’s usually a lot more dramatic. He likes to make an entrance.” Raph said, shaking his head. “Why do you ask?”

I quickly told them what I’d found, including the odd scrap of purple cloth. All four began to look uneasy when I mentioned the scratches, and finally nodded grimly. When I explained that the pole was right next to the roof, Leo growled angrily, and Raph muttered a curse that would have put an inner-city gangster to shame.

“Son of a…!” Leo snarled. “It was right under our noses the whole time! How could we miss that?!”

“Calm down, kemosabe. It’s not your fault,” Mikey said, consolingly. “You said it yourself, Raph- it’s not his usual MO. How were we supposed to know?”

“Well, at least now we know he WAS here,” Donnie mused, ever the optimist.

Then something happened that I never expected- a voice interrupted from the doorway of a small warehouse across the street. “Correction, wretched reptiles- I am STILL here! Did you really think you could stop me? You’re too late!” He laughed coldly. That voice chilled my blood, for I recognized it as the voice of the man I’d heard two years before. It was dark, evil, and full of venom, the voice of a psychopath and a killer, of that I had no doubt.

We all spun around to face him, and I once again saw the face of my parents’ murderer. There was no mistaking that frightening helmet with the mask covering most of his face, the curved spikes on his armor, even the long cape. He oozed evil from every pore, and his eyes were hard, cold, and sinister. In that moment, I knew that this was a man who was capable of anything.

“It’s HIM,” I whispered, shuddering at the sound of his dark laughter. I started to back away; then I felt something solid behind me, and a reassuring weight rested on my shoulder. I glanced down to see a familiar green hand wearing a watch, and realized that it was Michelangelo. I felt safer just knowing he was there, somehow, though I couldn’t explain why. Maybe it was knowing that he had protected me once before, or maybe I just needed that reminder that I wasn’t alone this time. Whatever it was, it gave me courage.

“So, that’s the big bad guy, huh?” I finally asked sarcastically, trying to sound more confident than I felt.

“Yeah, how’d you guess?” Raph replied in a casual tone. I noticed that he and the others had all drawn their weapons, and it occurred to me to wonder if they ALWAYS carried them.

“Oh, I dunno, maybe it was the helmet that gave him way?” I shot back. Raph snickered.

“Come on, guys- let’s do this,” Leo said calmly, and stepped boldly toward their foe. His brothers all nodded agreement, and I suddenly found myself wishing I had a weapon too, though what I would do with one was anyone’s guess.

“You can’t win, chrome-dome! You might as well give up now!” Leo called out as he charged at the walking meat-cutter. Shredder- and I still couldn’t believe he actually called himself that- gave a yell and pulled a short metal rod with a sharp point at each end, which he twisted and snapped out; it grew longer, until it became a double-ended spear.

“I will enjoy destroying you, shell-back!” He sneered under the mask, and then all talk ceased as the battle began. I had known my new friends were expert martial-artists, and that they were skilled in the use of their chosen weapons, but until that moment, seeing them in action, I had not realized just what that meant. Unlike their ordinary cousins, these turtles were anything but slow. No, they moved like lightning.
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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MsMarvelDuckie
Inhuman
Joined: 28 Nov 2007, 20:55

09 Jan 2013, 02:22 #25

The fight looked vicious- which it was, of course- as the four teen turtles (it still sounds strange saying that) battled their arch-enemy. A part of me wanted to help, as the guys seemed to be fighting at a stalemate with the man in the bladed armor. He flipped Raph up off his feet and sent him rolling across the pavement, then fended off Leo's twin katanas even while ducking Michelangelo's spinning nunchaku. Donnie tried to sweep his bo into the man's back, but he simply pivoted and dodged aside, causing Donnie to smack it into Mikey instead.

Then one booted foot came up and heaved Leo backwards into the garish yellow van, and I realized that he was too familiar with all their moves. And why not? They had been trained in the same style, with Splinter and Saki both taught under the same Master. It occurred to me that what was needed was an element of chaos, an opponent whose moves he did not know. Okay, so I had almost no training in any kind of martial arts- except for a couple of quickie classes in women's self defense that had obviously not worked too well, considering how I'd gotten into this situation - but I had to try, right? Odd as it seemed, these boys were my friends now, and I owed them for coming to my rescue that night. At least that's what I kept telling myself, even as another part of me whispered that I was doing something REALLY stupid.

I looked around for anything I could use as a weapon, and the best I could come up with was a piece of wood from a shipping pallet with the nails still attatched, lying near a dumpster. Shrugging, I picked it up and charged into the fray from behind the murderous slimeball. I had assumed that I could take him by surprise by attacking at his back where he could not see me. Big mistake. I had not counted on the skill of my opponent- specifically, the fact that ninjas are trained to fight blind, and to detect enemies no matter what direction they attack from. I found out the hard way.

I was shocked when my swing with the board missed completely, simply because he'd heard me coming- damned high heels, I thought, too late- and spun aside, grabbing the board and twisting it right out of my hands. He threw it at Leo, who had attempted to use the distraction of my swing to find an opening. Leo ducked his head into his shell to avoid the flying missile; I gaped, astonished that such a thing was even possible, until I remembered what he was. The next instant, I was grabbed by the wrist, and the so-called "Shredder" dragged me back toward the warehouse he had hidden in, putting the point of his weapon to my throat.

"Enough! Drop your weapons, or the girl dies!" He snarled angrily, putting his back to the open door. I tried to pull free, but it was no use. Apparently, those muscles were not just for show, because he felt as strong as an ox! I gulped, knowing he was dead serious, if you'll excuse the pun. I'd seen him do it before, and had no doubt he would kill me too.

""Dudes, we gotta do something! We can't let him hurt Orlene!" Michelangelo said worriedly. Somewhere in the back of my mind, it occurred to me that he had taken the role of my personal guardian, and I wondered why. At the moment, however, there were bigger things to worry about.

"Sheesh, is it just me, or is that gal a catastrophy waiting to happen?" Raph joked grimly. I glared at him, and filed the comment away for a later chastising.

Finally, Leo grimaced and sighed. "Guys, I don't think we have a choice. He won't hesitate to do it." He gave their nemesis a sullen nod and tossed his swords to the ground. "Alright, Shredder- you win THIS round. Now LET. HER. GO." His voice had gone deadly cold, and I wondered if something had not just changed in his mind.

The others did the same, and the man holding me chuckled darkly. "Haha, fools! Your compassion is your weakness! NEVER give away your advantage over an enemy for the sake of protecting a useless female! THAT leads to defeat." He slowly dragged me, snarling and squirming, through the door into the warehouse. I looked around, wondering how he intended to escape when the door was gaurded by four very angry reptilian warriors. I spat, cursed, and fought, but could not break free. Leo and the others stalked through the door after us, but kept their distance.

I glanced behind me, towards the back wall of the mostly empty warehouse, and saw a startling sight there. A huge, gleaming metal tube-like object with an open hatch in one side and an enormous drill on the front sat partially poking from an even larger hole in the floor. It had what looked like tank treads underneath, and was apparently some sort of sub-terranian vehicle. I realized that this was his escape route, and that he meant to take me along for the ride. Right about that time, there came a loud noise from outside, that sounded ominously like a motor revving in high gear. The turtles all looked startled, and turned around just in time to see their own van come crashing through the door and wall of the warehouse- straight at Shredder!

He let out a surprised curse, and threw me down as he dived out of the way. I let out an unlady-like curse, at him, but it went unnoticed. I heard a clink as something hit the floor, and suddenly spotted a small metal and glass vial rolling my way. I grinned as I snatched it up, glad that at least something was finally going my way. Meanwhile, the van screeched to a halt, and April poked her head out the driver's side window.

"Hey, guys! Thought you could use some help!" She waved to them, and all four green heroes broke out in laughter.

"Alright April!" "You GO, girl!" "YES!!" "Come on, lets GET him!" The last was from Leo, as they bull-rushed their arch-foe all at once. Seeing that his only advantage was gone, the creep turned tail and dove into the waiting machine, slamming the hatch closed behind him. A moment later, it whirred to life, and swiftly slipped back down into the tunnel it had made.

"Damn!" shouted Raph as it disappeared. "He got away- AGAIN!"

"Yeah, AND he made off with that hydrogen fuel!" Donnie growled angrily. "You realize what this means?! He has enough power now to bring the Technodrome to the surface and take over the city!"

"I wouldn't bet on that, guys," I said, getting up and dusting myself off. "That creep didn't get way with ANYTHING. And what the heck is a Technodrome, anyway?" I glanced at them for an explaination. They all blinked, and exchanged confused looks.

"What do you mean he didn't get way with anything?" asked Leo.

"It's what he calls the giant battle-station tank he has hidden underground beneath the Hudson Bay. It's got enough firepower to level half the city. Only problem is it's only got enough power for life-support. At least until he uses that new fuel." Donatello replied sourly.

I shook my head, laughing. "Oh, you mean THIS?!" I asked, holding up the vial. Five pairs of eyes stated at me in astonishment.

"Where- HOW did you get that?!" Leo exclaimed. The others just exchanged excited glances.

"He dropped it when the cavalry showed up and he dove away from April's driving. I just picked it up." I said smugly, shrugging.

"STILL think she's a catastrophy waiting to happen?" Mikey shot at Raph, grinning. Once again, he was coming to my defense, it seemed, and I decided I would definitely have to ask him about that later.

For now, though, there was still the matter of the fuel to deal with. We decided to sneak it back into the lab where it could be found later, figuring that it was better to let the scientists assume it had merely been misplaced. A short time later, when all was as it should be, the boys drove me back to my apartment so I could shower and change to go do my volunteer work. As I stepped out of the van, I turned to look at them, wondering if this was the end of my adventure with them.

"Will I ever see you guys again?" I asked Donnie, shaking his hand. His grip felt cool, but freindly. I belatedly remembered that they were cold-blooded, and felt a little sorry for them living in a cold, damp sewer in the middle of a December freeze. For a moment, I wondered how they could even function at all in the cold, especially without clothes. I usually bundled up in winter, and especially now, with the snow piled nearly two feet high in parts of the city.

"Indubitably!" Donatello replied, in his usual multisylabic habit.

"For Sure!" Mikey added, grinning in his usual easy-going manner. His enthusiasm was infectious, I had to admit, and I found myself already starting to miss them.

I thanked them for everything, and gave them my phone number. Never mind that I would have to buy a new cell phone before anyone could call me. But like many things, it was the thought that counted. I went up to my apartment feeling strangely happy and sad at once, and went about my normal routine. The animal shelter turned out to have called in a professional groomer to bathe the dogs, so I ended up with my favorite duty- caring for the many homeless cats waiting for adoption.

After that was taken care of, I went out and bought a new phone, and returned home at last to relax and set it up. It was late evening when I heard a thumping on my fifth-floor window. I was curled up with my favorite fluffy throw blanket to watch a movie on cable, and the sound startled me. I tossed off the blanket, and cautiously went to the window. My first thought was that perhaps a pigeon had hit the window; instead, what I found was a shivering five-foot turtle with nothing but a scarf, mittens, and a beanie cap.

"Mikey?!" I exclaimed, staring at him in confusion. "What are you doing here?" I glanced outside, wondering if anyone had seen him come up the fire-escape.

"Uh, hi. C-can I c-c-come in? It's fr-freezing out here!" He said through chattering teeth. I nodded, and he was in through the window in a flash. He might be many things, but slow was NOT one of them.

"Okay, so what's going on? I wasn't expecting to see any of you so soon." I was baffled to say the least.

"Well, we were all talkin', and we thought maybe you should have a way to get hold of us- y'know, in case you ever need anything. Even Master Splinter agreed that you should be considered an honorary turtle. Anyway. Donnie made this for you. We all have one, even April! It's a communicator, y'know, sort of like on Star Trek. Donnie's a big sci-fi geek, and he builds all sorts of cool stuff." He shrugged as he handed me the small round object- cleverly made to resemble a turtle shell- and I flipped it open to reveal a small screen and several buttons. It was like a video pocket pager, from what I could tell. I glanced at it, and back at Michelangelo. He was shuffling nervously, rambling in his speech, and it occurred to me that he felt uncomfotable being in my apartment. Or was it just around ME?

"Thanks Mikey," I said, not quite knowing what else to say.

"Ah, don't mention it," he replied, staring down at the floor. I wasn't sure how to take this odd gift, but I was glad they had thought me worthy of it all the same. Part of me understood that this was a sign of friendship and trust, but still I wondered why they had felt it neccessary. And of all of them, why had he been the one to bring it? Surely Donatello would have been the logical choice, since he'd made it, and could explain how to use it better than anyone else could.

I asked the obvious question of how to use it, so he gave me a quick demonstration, showing me what the buttons were for, and how to switch between an open link with all of the others, or to talk to just one. Then he mumbled something about having to go back, and I nodded in silence as he turned to leave. Then he was gone, and I was left staring out the open window, wondering why he had seemed so reluctant to go. I didn't see my new friends again for several days, but even then, somehow I knew I hadn't seen the last of those wild and crazy party "animals".....
"Well, this is another fine myth you've gotten us into..."
-from "Myth Directions"

"Where Science ends, magic begins." -Spiral, Uncanny X-Men #491
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