4 years later. This chapter features the boy's and April's thoughts and feelings.
London, England, four years later...
April leaned back in her chair as she looked out her hotel window. London was a really nice place...
She'd been there for the past few days covering a huge story to do with sensitive political issues. But at the moment, she was just relaxing.
Tomorrow, she would return to New York City...
The reporter sighed. Had it really been four years?
April looked at her day planner which was lying open on the bed. Yup, it certainly had.
I wonder what the guys are up to...
Wow...she hadn't thought of them in a good few months.
Except for one of them...
The purple-masked turtle had been on her mind every spare moment she'd had over years, right from the beginning...
You thought of him that day you left for Paris, when you got there, when you left...when you took off to Ireland...
Basically, anywhere she'd been (and that had been a lot of places now) he'd been in her thoughts.
When she was able to, she had sent letters and postcards to the turtles to keep them updated as to where she had jetted off to next and what story she was covering.
She wondered if Donny found them interesting and if he was eagerly awaiting her return. April sincerely hoped so, for she was anxious to see him again...
Getting up, April began packing up her clothes.
See you soon, Donny...
The Lair, New York City...
Donatello stood in the dojo, watching Leonardo and Raphael spar as part of their usual afternoon training when a gentle cough caught his attention. He turned to see Michelangelo standing next to him.
"They're rockin' today." He said, smiling.
Donatello had to agree. The two of them were at the top of their game. This made the purple-masked turtle study his brother.
The same could not be said for him...
Mikey had never been quite the same after he'd finally recovered from that horrible disease. His breathing was different now...it was slightly raspy, hollow like one's is when they have a cold. This all indicated that the virus had done irreparable damage to his lungs.
He also got exhausted easier now, not to the point where he couldn't handle training or everyday living, but he couldn't do it with the same energy that he used to.
But at least he's alive...
Donny took that as a comfort. Everyday the turtle thanked the higher ups that his fun-loving brother was still around.
"How are you, Mikey?"
"I'm good, actually. I'm just waiting for our turn so I can kick your butt!" the orange-masked turtle grinned.
This made Donny smile. The sense of humour, as it were, is still intact...
That proved just how much of a survivor the young turtle was. There wasn't much that could get Mikey down...apparently not even nearly dying from influenza...
No thanks to a certain woman who decided to take off...
Donny frowned as he thought of April for the umpteenth time over the last four years. He'd tried with all his might to banish her from his thoughts, but nothing had worked. The damn woman haunted him.
This is what I get for caring about her...
Mercifully, the turtle's thoughts were broken by Mikey cheering Raph on.
This red-masked turtle smirked and knocked Leonardo on his shell.
"Ain't so perfect now, eh Fearless?" Raph joked, staring down at him.
Leonardo simply glared at the turtle before him instead of retorting. He had learned long ago that if he gave Raph ammo, the taunting wouldn't end.
Donatello just shook his head at them and got ready to spar with his orange-masked brother.
As the two engaged in their practiced combat, Donny listened to his brother's breathing. Yeah, so it had been four years, but it was still a habit.
It was alright at the moment; But Donny knew that as they went along, it would change...it would get raspier than it normally would and...
...and Donny would feel bad for the umpteenth time for pushing his little brother farther than his disease damaged lungs would allow.
Again, Donny cursed April for not being around to make sure that this sort of thing didn't have to happen. It was a hard reality, but the truth was that if Mikey had had the medicine that they all knew she could have provided them, Mikey could have gotten away without damage...
It was also extremely unlike Donny to bear a grudge against anyone but in this case, he figured it was justified.
Out of the corner of his eye, he could see his brothers watching Mikey too. Well, at least he wasn't alone in the whole unbreakable habit situation.
When the two finished even with Donny going easy on Mikey, the orange-masked turtle was still wheezing a little after the sparring was over.
"Don't worry, Donny...my breathers are alright." That was his word for lungs. Mikey knew that they still worried about his health and it actually irritated him a little. Usually, he would be happy for the extra attention, but after four years...well, it got a little old.
Taking a few deep breaths, Mikey left the dojo and flopped down on the couch. But before he turned on the TV, he watched his purple masked brother walk by him, a frown on his face.
Mikey also knew that Donny was still angry April for leaving while he had been sick. In fact, all his brothers shared that sentiment.
He, however, wasn't angry at her at all. Mikey hadn't wanted her around while he was that ill...For sure, if she had stuck around, she might have caught it from him and then he'd never have been able to forgive himself.
Still four years was a long time to be away...and he missed her. He'd enjoyed the letters that she'd sent. He knew that Donny had too...
Yeah, sure he was the goofy brother, but he sure as heck noticed a lot and that made him able to read his brothers pretty well when it came to their emotions or what it is they might be thinking.
Most importantly Mikey knew that despite everything, his purple-masked brother still cared for April and that made Donatello angry at himself aswell.
He's slowly turning into Raph... He thought sombrely.
Maybe...just maybe...if April came back, things could begin to fix themselves.
Raphael observed his two brothers whilst he picked his teeth with the middle prong of his Sai.
The same damn emotions were there. Donny was angry at April and himself and Mikey...well, he knew that he was worried about Donny's uncharacteristic behaviour.
He may not have the same intuition as far as feeling went as Mikey did, but he could definitely see what theirs were since they were always written all over their faces.
The red-masked turtle's opinion on the situation with April was this: She left them while they were in a time of need. The woman didn't bloody well care that Mikey was probably dying...All she cared about was jetting off to some fancy place that was across some fancy ocean to selfishly further her own career.
Fuck that...friendship and Mikey's life are more important than silly trips. In a nutshell, he was furious at the ambitious red head.
He was also ticked at his purple-masked brother for still caring about her. How could her leaving not rid Donny of his feelings for her? Raph growled in frustration. Maybe the guy had some screws loose or something, he didn't know. Either way, he didn't like it.
Swiftly, the hot headed turtle walked into his room and headed straight for his hammock. Sighing he put on his headphones and drowned out his dreary thoughts with some hard rock and roll.
Leonardo sat in the lotus position in his usual meditation spot in his room. He was trying to clear his mind, but it wasn't going very well. Usually, whatever troubled his mind quickly but for some reason or another, it stuck around.
He'd gotten a feeling in his gut not too long ago that told him trouble was heading their way. Not in the form of the Foot or any such force like that. This wasn't going to be a physical battle, but instead an emotional one.
Leonardo had been wondering for days just what this meant. Did this mean that they were all emotional ticking time bombs and soon they were going to explode?
Well, that didn't actually seem too far fetched. In fact, it was entirely possible considering Don's, Raph's, and even his own behaviour over the years.
April leaving had really shaken up the core of the family. So much so that Leonardo feared that if she were to return, they'd never have that old friendship back again...
But on the other hand, did they want it? Did he want it?
That was what Leo was still trying to figure out. Sure, he could see that she'd wanted to move up in her job, but did she really have to go while their beloved brother had been at death's door?
This made the blue-masked turtle sigh wearily. The harsh reality is that he felt like pulling a Raph and not forgiving her at all but he knew that wasn't the right thing to do.
The right thing would be to hear her out and let her hear their side and go from there.
Mediator is a new role for me... he thought. Usually, this sort of thing was Donny's job but since the purple masked turtle was more involved emotionally, he was forced to do this.
Leo had always known that Donny had cared deeply for April but he had never thought it was this bad...
That meant only one thing: their poor super genius brother was in love.
I feel so bad for you, Donny...you don't deserve this kind of torture.
Funnily enough it was Mikey that was the only one who didn't hate the woman and was actually glad she'd left when she did.
Will wonders with Michelangelo never cease?
With another sigh, Leonardo gave up on the meditation and stood. Instead, he grabbed a book off of a shelf in his room and settled down to read.
Unbeknownst to Leonardo and the rest of the turtles, it would the next day that the bombs would indeed go off.