Chapter one- Reality
I know I wasn't supposed to see it. But I did. And after it happened,
after I saw that trickle of blood on her lip, I knew my life was
never going to be the same. Nothing was ever going to be the same again.
"Where the hell did you think you were going to go?"
His only response was silence.
"Answer me god damit!"
"I don't know" she replied quietly.
"You don't know? The hell you don't know!" he yelled
"I'm sorry" she whispered faintly.
"Not as sorry as you're going to be when I'm finished with you, young lady"
He walked over to her angrily and grabbed her by the arm and began to drag her roughly out of the ally.
"Ow! That hurts, stop!!!"
He stopped abruptly, turned around, and smacked her right in the face. The sound echoed throughout the alleyway they were
"Don't you ever tell me what to do, ya hear? Ever!" he replied vehemently, spittle flying from his mouth.
The girl winced and gave a meek nod.
"By the time I'm through with you, you'll be lucky if you're able to sit down in a week."
Her eyes fell to the ground, suddenly interested in the tip of her shoe protruding underneath her wide pant legs.
"Look at me when I talk to you"
He wrenched her chin up to meet his eyes, and snarled at her.
"Things are going to change around here, starting now"
But her mind drifted, her eyes focused on the background behind him. Another smack to the face sent her to the ground. A
metallic taste filled her mouth...blood. He hastily pulled her to her feet and dragged her down the alley towards the street.
That's when she saw them...the eyes. How long had they been watching? <Oh god> she said inwardly. If she knew who it was
she'd apologize for this. Maybe it was some homeless person. She could come back later with food, and maybe get a chance to
apologize. If she would ever be able to.
He watched quietly from his perch on the fire escape outside her bedroom window. The man had chained her to the bed and
had locked the door to the equally bare room. He snorted with disgust. How could anyone live like this? His eyes fell back onto
the still form curled on the bed. She hadn't moved since the man had thrown her there. But he could see her shake from the
silent sobs that raked through her body. After awhile he turned away, disgusted. It was getting late. He needed to get home
before anyone started to worry. Tomorrow evening he would come back to check on her. As silently as he came, he left and
melted into the darkness.
When she finally woke up, she wished that she hadn't. A blinding pain hit her full force. She could already tell that her jaw was
swollen and bruised. She didn't even want to know what her lip looked like. The salty metallic taste still lingered on her tongue.
God, she needed to get out of here. With a groan she pulled herself up into a sitting position on the hard bed. How long had she
been out? God she needed a watch. Damn!! Her job! Marty was going to be pissed! As she began to scramble off the bed, she
noticed the chains that bound her to the foot of the bed.
"Aw man, Marty is gonna kill me!"
The sudden voice made her jump, leaving her hanging partially from the bed. The voice's owner pulled her back up with a quick
jerk of a chain. She looked around, wondering where the person went. When she saw no one she started shaking her head.
"Dad really knocked me good, I'm starting to hallucinate."
"No, you're not, I'm real. I, uh, just don't want you to see me."
"Are you going to kill me? I really hope you do. It would be a ticket outta this hellhole."
He blinked in surprise. He never met anyone who wished for their own death before. This girl was very interesting and, at the
same time, dangerous. Dangerous? Where had that come from? Get a grip Leo, she's a girl in need of some help. She could
hardly hurt anyone. Or could she? He shook his head and looked back over at her. It was the first time he got a really good look at
her. And what he saw both enraged and confused him. Enraged because he saw the pain in her eyes and confused because he
became lost in her eyes.
"Are you still there?"
"Yes. Why do you ask?"
"I, uh, don't want you to leave."
Silence met his ears, and he watched as a tear escaped her eye.
"Umm...because, I...I don't want to be alone. You're comforting."
Leo sucked in a sharp breath. This was too real. Then he realized that it was.
"Well, I'll stay was long as I can."
"You have to leave soon, don't you?"
"Yea, you could say that. I have people who would worry if I didn't get home."
"Must be nice."
"People caring about you like that."
"Oh...well umm...yea, it is."
Her only response was a small sigh. Something inside of his chest tightened. What was it?
"So...do you have a name?"
"That's some fancy name."
"You can call me Leo if you want."
"Ok...Leo. I like it."
She gave him a crooked grin. First time he had seen her smile. She looked bea- stop. This was not happening.
He blinked and felt his chest tighten a little more. Rain.
"That's an...odd name."
So beautiful. A very beautiful name.
"Yea well, my mom was kind of a hippie."
He saw the look of mourning in her dark eyes. They were so empty. Empty yet full of hurt and anger. Betrayal. Tighter. It was
starting to get harder for him to breath.
"I have to go."
"Will I see you again?"
He bit his tongue. Could he promise her that? Gods, how couldn't he?
"Yes, I promise."
"Hey, what time is it?"
"Crap, Marty is going to just kill me!"
"He's my boss. I work at that little pizza place down the block and around the corner. Ever been there before?"
"Yes, plenty of times."
<Too many times> he thought to himself.
"Maybe I'll see ya sometime."
He watched as her rose-colored lips twitched into a small smile. Even they were pale with grief. His eyes became fixated with the
cut on her lower lip. He could kill that man. He turned and slipped out of the cold room. Empty, everything was empty.
The small child ran around the meadow, her long hair playfully thrown around in the wind. Her eyes were transfixed on a white
butterfly. A giggle like the sound of wind chimes escaped from her rose-petal lips. So jubilant and full of life and wonderâ€¦then
the image vanished, replaced with a frigid chill and a blackened room. Inside, curled in a corner, was the same girl. But she was
older. All her warmth and luster were gone. She cried silently. Her tears formed miniature rivers of salt on her cheeks. Something
ached. Her heart. It ached for love and compassion. But there was something new. It was a flicker of hope that wasn't there
before. She lifted her face and reached out.
"Help me" she whispered. Leo jerked awake, breathing hard. He pushed away the sweat soaked sheets.
The distant sound of a ringing phone brought her out of a deep slumber. Who was it? She strained to hear the short, muffled
"No, she's been sick."
"She'll be back into work in a week or so."
"Yea, I'll tell her. Bye"
Heavy footsteps came towards her bedroom. The soft click of a lock falling out of place and the groan of the door opening, woke
her up completely. Her father's tired face came into view.
"You're boss called."
"What'd he want?"
"Called to see where you were."
"When can I go back to work?"
There was a pause. His brows pinched together in a brief moment of anger.
"When I feel like you've learned a lesson. That's when."
The door slammed behind him, causing her to jerk from the sudden noise. She sighed deeply. When was this going to end? Her
eyes fell to the chains around her wrists and ankles. The skin was already becoming raw. Damn.
He gave a grunt in response to Mike's cheeriness.
"Whoa, what's with him?"
"Couldn't tell you."
Mike glanced over at his brother. Don has his face hidden behind a newspaper. Typical.
Raphael gave the same grunt in response that Leo had. Man, they were more alike than they thought. Mike shook his head and
turned back to the pile of pancakes sitting on the counter. Breakfast was ready.
"Ok, who's hungry?"
He had barely set the plate down before greedy hands grabbed half the pile away. Guess everyone. Mike drenched his pancakes
with syrup and tried to remember what it was he needed to tell his brothers. Let's seeâ€¦
"Hey did anyone have a dream about that girl last night?"
"I did." Raph replied
"Yea, same here. It was very confusing."
Leo remained silent. He hadn't ever dreamed of the girl. The others, they had been dreaming of her off and on for the past few
years now. Splinter still didn't know what it meant. And it puzzled him that Leonardo still hadn't had the dreams.
"What happened in the dream that confuses you, my son?"
Don turned to face Splinter, swallowing his mouthful before speaking.
"Well, at first I saw this little girl running through this big meadow. Seemed like it could have been somewhere out near April's
farm. She was chasing this little white butterfly and then it suddenly just faded and it was the same girl, only she was older, and
she looked really lost, and afraid andâ€¦andâ€¦"
"Empty." Raph finished for him.
"Yea empty. Thanks Raph."
"Not a problem."
"Yea! And then she looked up and reached her hand out and whispered 'Help me'. It was very strange man."
They all nodded in agreement.
"She had not done this before?"
"Hmm, most peculiar. Maybe something is happening with this child. It seems as years go by, your dreams become more cold,
That tightening feeling came back to Leo. He needed to get out of there.
"Master Splinter, may I be excused please?"
Everyone looked over at the seemingly calm turtle. But Splinter sensed his son's distraught. He gave him a simple nod. Leo
bowed his head respectfully and was gone.
"Man, what is up with him? He's been acting really strange for the past couple days, dudes."
"Yea, I know. It's not like him. It's like he's been distracted by something." Don added.
Raphael cleared his throat, causing everyone to look at him expectantly.
"What I wasn't gonna say nothin'."
He gave an exasperated sigh and got up from the table. Mike and Don looked at each other and shrugged.
"You two stay and clean up, then come join us in the dojo for morning practice."
"Yes Master Splinter." They replied in usion.
With respectful bows, they went about their tasks.
"Leo, what are you doing?! Leo! LEO!!"
Leonardo spun around in a half high round about kick and completely lost control of both his katanas. He watched in horror as
one slammed into the wall and the other nearly missing Raphael. At the same time he lost his footing and fell to the floor with a
loud thunk. The only sound that could be heard in the dojo was Leo's labored breathing. What was wrong with him? He closed
his eyes tightly and only saw her face, her bruised face.
"Leo I want to speak with you now."
Splinter's voice was boarding on anger. But his eyes held a glint of concern. Leo stood up slowly, bowed, and left the dojo. His
brother's were still standing there with their mouths still gaping from the shock. Splinter turned to them and clapped his hands
"Continue on with your practice."
"Yes Master Splinter." Michelangelo and Donatello replied.
Raph just grunted and went over to the wall and yanked Leo's katana out.
"God what is wrong with him!? He's never fucked up like that! Never!"
He heaved his fists into the punching bag hanging in the corner.
"Raph, calm down, there has to be a reason-."
"No! I will not calm down! You wanna know what his reason is?"
"Uh...do I?" Mike ventured.
"I'll bet you anything he's been having dreams about that girl from day one. I bet you anything, and he probably knows
something that we don't. And he's not going to tell us because 'Its not safe, we shouldn't get involved.'"
Raphael had a nasty tone to his voice as he quoted one of the many well know thoughts that Leo voiced on a regular basis. Don
and Mike exchanged glances. Raph was right.
Splinter settled into the large pillow across from where his son sat silently. Leonardo had his head bowed low, and his face
hidden in his hands.
"Something is troubling you, is it not?"
Leo slowly pulled his hands away from his face and looked up at Splinter. He nodded silently.
"And what is troubling you, my son?"
His voice was barely above a whisper. He felt ashamed for denying the dreams that he had been having for so long.
Back to the April Files