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The Forgotten: Epilogue ~ Hey BrotherShe didn't keep her window locked. A foolish thing to do, he thought as he slid the glass open, though it benefited him in this moment. Silently, he slipped through the narrow gap, into her dark room. It took mere seconds for his eyes to adjust, aided by the dim light seeping in from the street, and for a few moments, he cast his gaze around the little room. It was small, but comfortable. The wall opposite him was pinned with posters and schematics, as well as a few sketches. More drawings littered a desk in the corner, along with pencils in every color he could think of, a small lamp, and a radio. On the walls, the shelves held stacks of thin, colorful books, thick novels, silver knives, and several more trinkets and treasures. Her sword, sheathed in a green scabbard, hung from a hook on the door. A dresser sat beside the window, the top decorated with framed photographs. He glanced through them, recognizing her in many, alongside the four terrapins, a large rat, and a man and woman he did not recognize. His eyes paused at the largest one. He saw her there, behind the glass, her arms around an older woman he had only laid eyes on once before. Side by side, he could see how similar they looked, their smiles echoing one another. He thought he could even see touches of the same auburn hair in the older woman's mahogany locks. He turned away from the photos, and finally looked at her. She lay peacefully beneath a forest green quilt, her hair tumbling over the pillow. Even in the dim light, it seemed to glow fiery orange and copper. A tiny silver turtle glinted from a black band at her throat, a rather charming replacement for her tracker. He watched her, breathing softly, slowly, looking so serene, and he could not believe that he had once been ready to kill her. She shifted slightly, and he realized her hand rested next to a pad of paper, the top page etched with lines. Curious, he looked closer, and was shocked to find his own face staring back at him. Without thinking, he took the book in his hands, studying the sketch as if it held some secret message. She had captured him as truly as any photograph could have, every line and shadow and highlight. And, more surprising still, she had made him look.... sad. His eyes were full of sorrow, his face pained."That's how you looked just before you pushed me through the rift," she said softly, and he nearly dropped the book in surprise. Kacey had sat up, the quilt pooling around her. She watched him, her violet eyes intense, but wary. "I didn't think I'd ever see you again after that." He stared at her, a million words in his mind, but none reaching his lips. She met his eyes, and smiled. "It's good to see you, brother."At this, he broke. He dropped to his knees, the sketch book falling from his hands. Before it hit the floor, she was there, her arms around him, and he buried his face in her hair, his eyes burning. "I worried about you, sister," he whispered. "I've thought about you so often."She pulled away, her eyes studying his face. "I thought about you, too," she admitted. "I've spent so long, just hoping you were alright." She reached up, touching her fingers gently to a spot near his right eyebrow, her head tilted slightly. "I didn't know we could scar."He closed his eyes, remembering how he'd gotten the small blemish, which was fairly new. "It doesn't happen often," he murmured, losing himself a bit in her touch as she traced it softly. "Usually only when the cut is very deep, or the damage is too great for the body to heal quickly enough."Her brow furrowed. "What happened to you?" His eyes opened, and he met her gaze. He reached up, took her by the wrist, and pulled her hand away from his face. He stood, turning away from her. "I needed time," he said finally. "Time to think. To understand. To... To make amends."Kacey rose from the floor, too, and sat instead on the bed, watching him. It had been weeks since the night she'd fought 14, and she'd thought about him every single day. He looked like he'd been through a warzone. He wore black jeans and a plain grey tee, but both were ragged and torn, and neither seemed to fit properly. The thick black boots on his feet were scuffed and worn, the laces loose. The black collar around his neck, though, was as tight as ever, though angry red marks made her think he'd been trying to remove it on his own. His hair had grown from the short crop, and hung down almost to his eyes. Eyes that betrayed his quiet facade, and told her that something was troubling him. She couldn't help thinking about what he'd said, and wondering what could have happened to give him that scar. "What did you do?"He gazed out the window, to the dark street below. "The guards were no trouble," he recalled, and she thought briefly back to the pounding of a door, the flash of charging men she'd seen just before being swallowed by the rift. "I defeated them easily enough. And then I... I destroyed the lab." He heard her gasp softly, but she didn't interrupt him. "I started with that horrendous machine. I ripped it apart, piece by piece. I dismantled every computer, hard drive, and memory bank I could find, flattened each and every one. I set fire to the hard copies, burned every file in the building." He'd done more, but he felt it best not to share. "I made sure that no one, no one, could ever use that place to hurt people ever again. And then, when I was strong enough, I went through the rift, back to the lab that raised me. And I... I...""You what?"He sucking in a breath, turning to face her, his emerald eyes wild. "I blew it up. I found the charges they once used to test me, I set them around the damned building, and I let it explode." He raised a hand, brushing the scar on his temple. "I didn't quite get out fast enough, though. I got caught by some shrapnel from the blast. It was worth it just to see the place burn." He didn't tell her how badly he'd been injured, or how long it had taken him to recover. Let her think it was only a single scar.She stared at him, eyes wide, mouth agape. "But..." she stammered, "if you destroyed the lab, wh... what about the people working there?"He looked at her, marveling for a moment at how she could be concerned for people who had been paid to inflict pain and suffering, then shook his head. "The building was empty," he said finally. "When Fox brought me to New York to find you, he also brought every hand that served in that lab. All the troops you saw at the base. He didn't leave anyone behind." I didn't kill anyone, he added in his mind, though he knew she thought the same thing from the way her shoulders relaxed. "So why are you here?" she asked. "You've been gone for so long. Why come now? And," she added, almost as an afterthought, "how did you find me?" She and Ella had moved into this apartment just a few weeks prior. Now that she thought about it, she had no idea how he had known where she was.For the first time, he smiled, just the slightest quirk of his lips. "It's hard to explain," he said simply. When she only raised an eyebrow, he added, "It's like there's some connection between us. I've felt it ever since I actually met you for the first time. I just followed where it led me. I've been searching for you for a while. Finally, a few days ago, I found you here. This is the first time I've managed to bring myself to see you, though."Kacey thought about that, remembering how much she'd somehow managed to track down Mikey after their first meeting. That felt so long ago now, but she'd never been able to explain how she'd found him. She'd just known where to look. "Alright," she said finally, though she wanted to ask him so many questions about it. "So, what brought you here?"Now he looked at a loss for words, as if he'd completely forgotten his reason for coming. Then, he dug into a pocket, and pulled something out. Holding his hand out to her, she saw that he held the little bear that Olivia had given her, after Kacey had saved her life. The bear that Kacey had then given to him. "This... This is yours," he said at last, his eyes on the floor. "I thought you would want it back."Kacey stared at the little toy, then looked back at him. "I gave it to you. It's yours now." He shook his head, but she reached out and closed his hand around it. "Why did you really come?"He sighed, his shoulders drooping. "I needed to see you," he said honestly. "To know you were alright. And... I guess, part of me was hoping..." "Hoping...?" she urged.Another sigh, deeper this time, more hopeless. "...hoping that... I might... see her." He motioned to her dresser, and Kacey looked over, seeing the photo of herself and Ella together. April had taken it the day they'd moved into the apartment, which was just two streets over from April's place. The other photos were all from that day, too, and Kacey could still remember laughing with the turtles as they'd helped get the place cleaned up. But that photo was special. It was her first picture together with Ella. With her mother. And Kacey understood her twin's feelings. "You want to meet her?" she said."I've already met her," 14 replied quietly, his eyes still low. "But I had no idea who she really was at the time. I only knew she was screaming at Dr. Pole, and I was ready to subdue her if necessary. They'd never told me that Kaden's mother still worked for Kryonix. They never told me her name, or what she looked like. By the time I figured it out, she'd already vanished. Off to find you, I imagine."Kacey smiled, shaking her head. "No," she said. "Do you want to meet her? Right now?"His gaze snapped to hers, his eyes wide. "I..." he said, looking pale. "I... I don't know if that's such a good idea."Kacey jumped up. "Of course it is." Before he could stop her, she'd padded from the room, her footsteps almost silent as she practically skipped down the hall. Minutes later, she was pulling a drowsy, pajama clad Ella Raeheart behind her, promising something special."Kacey, it's almost three in the morning," Ella was saying as the girl nudged the door open. "Whatever this is, better be-" she froze, spotting the boy standing there in her daughter's room. "Wh... What..?"14 stayed where he was, immobilized by shock, stuck dumb by his own nerves. He stared at the woman, paralyzed, even as Kacey suddenly flipped the light on. The young doctor looked much as she had the first time he'd seen her, though a bit disheveled. Her dark hair, touched with a deep red, tumbled in a loose braid down her back, and her glasses sat crooked on her face. Her hazel eyes were wide behind the lenses as she looked back at him. He wracked his brain, looking for something, anything to say."I... I've tried to imagine you for years," he said finally. "I've tried to imagine what Kaden's mother, the woman responsible for my existence, could possibly be like. I imagined what I might say to you, a million times over. And now... Now I don't know what to say." She said nothing, and he shook his head. "I don't deserve to be here," he said, his voice almost a whisper. "I'm not Kaden. Kaden was good. A boy that wanted to help people. And Kacey," he glanced at his twin. "Kacey risked her life to save the people she called family. And I tried to kill her for it. No, I don't deserve to be here. I don't even deserve to have his face."Ella took a tentative step toward him, her heart racing. When he didn't move, she closed the gap between them, and drew him into her arms, holding him as only a mother could. "You may not be Kaden," she said softly, as he slowly, hesitantly, returned her embrace. "But you are still my son. You are both my children." She reached out to Kacey, pulling her closer, holding them both. And together, they talked well into the day.~*~The next morning, Kacey entered the underground lair just as the turtles were finishing their exercises. "Morning Kacey!" Michelangelo greeted her with a wave. "Hey guys," she replied, waving back. "What's up, Mighty Mouse?" Raphael asked."Well," Kacey said, glancing over her shoulder. "I have something to show you guys."At this, the four brothers all looked up, curious. "What is it?" Donatello asked. "I'd like you guys to meet... Kai," Kacey said as she stepped aside. The turtles stared in surprise as 14 - or Kai, as he had told Kacey and Ella he wished to be called - entered their dojo. He glanced at them, wondering what they were thinking, but no one spoke. Finally, Kacey couldn't stand the awkward silence, and she took him by the arm, pulling him over to the turtles. Kai stood tensely as Kacey introduced him to them one by one, offering only small greetings. In return, most of the terrapins seemed friendly enough, but reserved, as if afraid to spook him. All but one of them, anyway. "It's great to meet you!" Michelangelo said, immediately throwing an arm around him. "Y'know, now that you're not all 'grr, I'm gonna defeat you all' and all that."Kai cast a look at his twin, but she only smiled and said, "That's Mikey. He's always like this." She looked up as a new figure approached them. "And this is Master Splinter."Splinter studied the boy closely. "You threatened to destroy my sons," he said finally. Kacey started to protest, but he raised a hand to silence her. "And you nearly killed my daughter. What do you have to say for yourself?"Kai shook off Michelangelo's arm, meeting the old rat's gaze. His mind filled with excuses, but even to him, they sounded false and empty. Only the truth would do. "I meant to destroy them all," he said. "I truly did. It was what was ordered of me. And, for too long, I believed that my orders were all that mattered." He looked around at them, all staring. "I thought there could be no life for us. That we only existed to destroy and kill. But now I see what Kacey has found. I see the family she's made. And I know that it really is possible for us to be good. To do good in the world. I know I can never make up for what I tried to do to her. What I did to all of you. But I'm willing to try, if you'll let me."Splinter regarded him for a moment more, then smiled. "It isn't what you have done that's important," he said earnestly. "It's what you choose to do to make up for it that matters." He extended a hand to the boy. "Welcome to our home, Kai."Kai hesitated, then took his hand. At once, a tension broke, and the boy found himself surrounded by turtles, all welcoming him. One of them moved aside, and returned with something long and thin, wrapped in a black cloth. Kai looked at him curiously as he held it out to him."We saved this when we went over the Kryonix base," Leonardo said. "Just in case."Kai raised an eyebrow and took the bundle. Pulling aside the cloth, his breath caught. There, inside, was his sword, the blade gleaming. He held it up, the weight familiar in his grasp. "I thought I'd lost it for good," he said. "It's a good sword," Leo said, smiling. "It seemed like a shame to leave it behind.""...Thank you," Kai said.Mikey again threw his arm around Kai's shoulders, tossing his other around Kacey's. "Welcome to the family, Kai!"Kacey giggled and looked around. With 14, Kai, here with them, it seemed her family was finally, truly, complete.
Family ForeverFamily Forever by HorrorRuby7
Disclaimer: I do not own TMNT in any way.
AN: This is for TMNTfans contest. This is the Turtles vs. Foot topic.
Leo blinked his eyes before rolling them. For some reason, their family had an odd obligation to taunt their opponents before or during battle. (Sometimes, especially since fighting the Foot happened more often lately, it was fun and killed a WHOLE lot of tension.)
Leo, though, could swear that the whole thing was Mikey's secret maniacal plot.
Standing tall and still- like a memorial statue- he firmly placed each katana in either hand, facing forward. Mirror to him was Raph who stood with his feet shoulder width apart; his sai was gripped firmly in his fist.
"A little," Leo smirked.
With that (And with a quick twirl of one's sai) they charged each other. Their metal weapons clashed and sparked.
Disarmed of one katana, Leo leaped into midair landing on his toes plesantly before hitting Raph's abdomin with the hilt o
Winners List2020 TMNT Adult Fanfiction Awards WinnersThe Awards this year included many, many wonderful fanfictions and fan art, running the genre gamut. We know that choosing winners in each category was difficult and appreciate the people who took the time to vote. This year set a record for voting! Even with those votes, there were ties in many categories. Efforts were made to sort out winners by vote and percentage, but in the end, ties were inevitable. It was also necessary to bend the rules to allow some stories to win in more than 3 categories. The purpose of the Awards is not only to honor those who have created TMNT content during the year, but also to honor the fandom in general. Doing so means honoring their vote. That is reflected in the winner’s list. Thank you to everyone who took the time to nominate and vote. A special thank you to content creators – without you there would be no fandom. Congratulations to every nominee and winner!Badges will be sent to winners who claim them and who participated in the awards in some capacity (ex: nominating, created badges, voting, etc.). If you have won and participated, you can claim your badges here: email@example.com before April 8.Please list the badges you’ve won in order to facilitate our work.2020 TMNT Adult Fanfiction Awards Winners
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