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 TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows

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VampireCat92
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Sat Aug 05, 2017 11:57 pm

"No not really." Leo answered as he jumped from Andrea's whip that barely, just barely missed his feet. "That's how I underestimate my enemies. And I'm not going to underestimate you."

"Well, that's nice that you won't underestimate me, but perhaps it might be a little harder to take me down if you don't take a breath and stop taking me so seriously. I'm an ally, and we aren't in this to bleed, not like our siblings." Andrea hummed as she twirled around and spun her whips around her, acting like a pinwheel.

"They can do this forever..." Cassidy murmured as she watched them. "My god. I knew Andrea was good enough for Killian to have her assist, but not that good..."

Maddie nodded, "She has the endurance. You haven't really seen her fight, you just watched the dance recitals didn't you?"

Cassidy shrugged. "You went to every one of her fights didn't you? Someone had to be there for the dances."

Maddie wrinkled her nose. "At least the kids are adorable. I can't dance."

"You can, people just think you're being electrocuted." Cassidy teased.

"You just need the right partner." Mikey cooed at Maddie.

"You did /not/ just pull a Captain America reference, did you?" Raph groaned.

Cassidy beamed, "You mean like Raph?"

Maddie raised an eyebrow and she looked over at Raph. "I think they forgot we exist. Like we're right here...listening to this."

"I agree." Raph grunted, but he returned his attention to the fight with Leo and Andrea. "You sure Andrea's going to drop the whips first? She looks like she's having a lot of fun toying with Leo. She trying to teach the teacher or somethin'?"

"Basically, but Leo's stubborn." Maddie answered as she looked back. "Andrea's going to figure it out that it's really fruitless to try to do weapons. I mean, sure...she might surprise us all and just continue as is. But the dance will be boring, the same tune will be playing, and anyone who knows Candy-Cane knows that's no way to entertain anyone."

Madeline was right. It really didn't take very long before Andrea sighed and shrugged mostly to herself before she snapped her whip on purpose towards Leo's swords, getting the tip wrapped around one and she yanked, but Leo must've been prepared for it because he chopped it like it wasn't even leather he was cutting but just string, and she started to run in one way, getting him to chase her before she swung her arm and snapped her whip again, becoming a lot more fluid and fast with just the one, and it allow allowed him more openings.

"She's...why would she purposely give him a way in?" Raph blinked.

"Because it's a dance." Maddie answered as she watched them fight. "And once he gets close, he's gonna know it's because she let him. It wasn't about his skill. If this was a real fight? Who know who would've won."

"In a real fight, she has fire. These aren't her main weapons. Though, on that note even if they were, she wasn't being violent with them." Mikey pointed out, "He'd have a cut on his foot from earlier, and she /would/ have gotten him around the wrist, too. She has been really relaxed and not trying too much. Which is...actually scary, too? Since this is her /not/ serious."

"This is them trying to get a feel for one another. As she said before they weren't trying to draw blood." Maddie agreed. "She's dangerous. But she needs to be if she wants to fit in this time." She leaned back. "And she's alright with that, so long as it's only a fight that she needs to be in. Much like how I don't like interfering with fights that don't belong to me."

"Candy-Cane's really scary when she's angry." Cassidy nodded quickly. "Good god the last time I saw her get heated, I almost hid under the bed. Like a /kid/."

"Well, damn. That's something I'll see eventually, I guess. Her fire probably flares when she's angry, too, so that would be cause for concern." Raph tapped his chin.

"C'mon, Leo, go in for it, then!" Mikey cheered quietly, wanting the fight to progress naturally. It was easy to rile up with Raph, but Leo was definitely a 'watch and learn'.

Leo of course was the watch and learn type. When she had started moving quicker with her whip, he knew all to well that the "openings" were lies. He knew that if he tried to get through, she would have to defend. He needed to be fast to get through her dance now, and he needed to be swift. The problem, was that she was quick to change the direction of the whip. The slow dancing was ceasing, like he had thought it would, and now she was showing what she could do in half of the tempo. It was brilliant. He could call off the fight now. He could say he saw what he needed and was satisfied. But something told him that it wouldn't be fair not to try to get too close to her. The thing was, was that she was going to have to let him do that. If he tried himself, he'd get cut by the whip and she wasn't wanting to draw blood. That isn't what this was about.

"Are we going to get to the drums? Or are you content to continue to make yourself dizzy by thinking so fast? Round and round the record goes, Leo..." she hummed, partially sing-song, "I can dance to your tempo, but it's not as fun. Get tired that way. Ha! Like a tap-dance or river dance. Hmm? But you're not Irish, no no...You're /Japanese/!" She snapped her arm and wrist hard, her whip echoing off of the stone in the dojo, and she very nearly hit his plastron as he jumped back in the nick of time. "Dancing waves and whistling mountains!" She did a flip and came closer to him, snapping her wrist again and managed to yank just one katana from his hands, "Wooden flutes that lull and echo through the valleys, or haunt their way through the forests." She was also in his range now, ducking as he swiped his sword towards her head, "Dance with me!"

"And there she goes...raving like a lunatic. I'm not much better though." Maddie rolled her eyes as she watched the fight renew intensity. "This is going to take a while."

"I think it went passed "a while" a long time ago." Cassidy deadpanned.

"I should've made popcorn. Why did no one tell me to go make popcorn? If I leave now I'll miss something." Mikey whined.

Cassidy patted Mikey's arm. "It's okay. Next time, we know."

"She disarmed him part of the way so they're kinda even now. What's your prediction now? The weapons gunna fall to the wayside real fast here?" Raph looked down at Maddie with an arched brow.

"They're going to be at a draw." Maddie said after a moment. "She doesn't want to challenge Leo's leadership and...Leo doesn't want to humiliate her either. The second he gets too close, they're gonna call it."

"Damn and I was hoping to see the hand to hand. Maybe another day." Raph chuckled.

"The hand to hand will be another time. Now that she knows how he dances with weapons, she'll be prepared for how he goes with hand to hand." Maddie nodded. "It's hard to dance to one tune for too long and then switch. It's hard on anyone, even those with experience. You wear out faster and they've been at this longer than you and I have."

"Maybe they'll have a better knowledge of each other by then, too." Mikey smiled over at Maddie, "Less kinky and more intimate, right?" he snickered.

"I can only hope on that one." Maddie sighed shaking her head. "That was the weirdest introduction she had /ever/ done with her whips. Normally it's more about how she's going to hurt you. Instead she was trying to show off a little bit of...I don't know what she was trying to do. Black Widow I guess."

"She voted on you being Bucky and her Steve but damn, that's not what I'm seeing. You guys said her music code is rare but that's all she's used since this started. Is she really /that/ relaxed with Leo?" Raph asked.

Donatello finally said something after a long time, "I feel bad, honestly, for Andrea. Leo barely relaxes for any of us, even when he talks to me. Here she is, being open with someone she barely knows, and it could be months or never for him."

Cassidy looked at Maddie worriedly. "I know I said that they have good vibes, but now I'm wondering if that's even the case."

Maddie shrugged. "You're the only one that can really sense it. I just know that they're good. That's all. It might be months, but I will not say never. Leo would give her an inch. She wouldn't take a mile."

The brothers only hummed at that, not really believing it, but they didn't push it.

In the 'ring' Andrea was starting to frown. She was losing the momentum and force of power behind her attacks she made her way back around to the katana she had yoinked from him. She kicked it up, tossing it back at him, and then as he had to pause to catch it, she started spinning the whip around her arm like one would with a cord and sighed, also going to the scraps of the other whip, "You don't dance well with one. That was my mistake."

"You do well with the whips you have." Leo said taking her admission as a reason to end the fight. He bowed as it was customary and he looked up at her. "I like your fighting style. I'm alright with you coming to patrols, but I am sorry I let it go on for too long. It was only to get a sense of what you were like, but I had a bit too much fun with the challenge."

Andrea's shoulders tensed, and she cleared her throat before she finished gathering the pieces of the whip, "Were you really?" She asked, uncertain. "I feel as though I went too far. When I slip too deep it's difficult to pull back out of it. All I could hear was your rush, like the crashing of waves in the ocean or rapids in a river. In a fight I don't hear music because I don't let myself go that far or even touch that part of me at all."

Mikey watched as Andrea seemed to shift in on herself, and he nosed Cassidy's shoulder, "Is she self-conscious about the music code?" he whispered.

"Yep." Cassidy whispered back.

"It's fine. It was interesting." Leo said gently as he watched her. "I'm glad that you thought that I wouldn't hurt you too badly and were able to relax so much in your fighting style. It makes me wonder if your better when your focused /or/ when you get to be so relaxed. Thank you for fighting with me."

"It was a good fight." Andrea bowed back to Leo, but she wouldn't look at him, or anybody really. She cleared her throat again, "Excuse me. I actually work during the day, so I have to go before it gets too late. I'm glad that the idea for patrols went well." She held the whips tight and close and walked as briskly out of the dojo as she could without running.

"Is it just me, or did her confidence just go right out the window?" Raph frowned.

Maddie watched her friend leave and she shook her head. "The entire reason why she joined up the dojo to begin with was to regain confidence in herself. Her art she's confident in, but not in herself. Killian's gonna have words if he finds out..."

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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Sun Aug 06, 2017 12:15 am

Killian was preparing the mats for the class that was just about to come in when he heard the bell ring over head. He looked over his shoulder to see Maddie just come around the corner, taking off her shoes and putting them in the cubby near the door. She waved at him as she walked over to him. She had on black yoga pants, her hair tied up in a ponytail and her face clear of any and all make up. Her shirt looked pretty easy to move in, but hard to grab. “You here to train? It’s the younger kids to day.” Killian warned his former student as he stood up.

“Not to train. To tell you that I’ll come back.” Maddie smiled a little. “I’ll only teach the adults.”

Killian stared at her before rubbing the back of his neck. “Well. Holy shit, Mads. Years of me begging and you finally decide on your own to come back home? What did I sacrifice to make that happen?”

“Oh you know. Years of begging on your bad knee and Andrea’s confidence.” Maddie answered nonchalantly.

He blinked, a little taken aback. “Say that again? Andrea’s confidence?”

“She had too much fun with Leo and went all out on him in the music manner that she does sometimes when she used to spar here before people made fun of her.” Maddie answered as she sat down on the mat. Killian followed suit, but he had to sit in Hero’s pose rather than the cross legged style that Maddie was currently in. “Now she’s…you know down under.”

Killian sighed loudly. “So she’s back in the slump again. Hopefully she comes into work and I’ll be able to get her back straight. Maybe a little mano a mano with me will do some good. Or maybe a good talking to will do it. Alright, so why are you dressed so comfy?”

“Now this is just for me.” Maddie said with a smile. “I was also down there training with the guys and decided to wear something comfortable rather than jeans, jacket, and blah blah blah can’t move.”

“I bet he liked the way you dressed.”

“He liked the way I fought more.”

Killian laughed, tilting his head back and letting it out with no shame or fear. “Yeah I bet he did. Alright. I suppose you’re gonna go home and take a shower then and probably knock yourself out like a light.”

“Not the knock yourself out yet. I got things to do and prepare still.” Maddie bowed putting her hands in prayer and against her heart and sat back up. “I’ll talk to you again, Killian.”

“You too, Madeline. Welcome home, honey.”

Maddie’s cheeks turned a subtle pink, and he watched her grab her shoes from the cubby and hastily put them on before she ran off.

Still bad with emotions. Still so bad with emotions, but that wasn’t a surprise to anyone who knew her. He stood up, sighing as his knee throbbed.

“Yeah yeah. I ain’t looking forward to talking to Andy either.” He said patting his knee. “But whatcha goin' to do? A student needs her teacher after all.”

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Sun Aug 06, 2017 1:08 am

When Andrea came in she had hunched up shoulders and a furrow to her brows while there shadows under her eyes. She didn't sleep well, and she was quiet as she got the Gi she kept here on. She looked over at Killian as soon as she finished tying her black belt on and winced as she saw his expectant look. "Hello, sensei." She greeted with a sigh and clocked in at the desk.

"You only call me that when you're down in the waters." Killian watched her with a bit of concern. "Maddie came in and told me that she's coming back for good."

"Yeah. Training with the brothers served as the proof and push she needed to finally say yes. Cassidy and I helped rile her up, too. Didn't use magic once, either." Andrea sighed as she finished typing her number into the computer and it signed her on before coming closer to Killian, "I went way off the deep end, you could say."

"With your music code?" Killian gently gestured her to the benches. "Come on, time for a bit of a sit down. I think you need to tell me what's going through your head, Andy."

Andrea sat down with him and with a deep sigh, she explained to her teacher what happened. She did the best she could to explain it in a way that would make sense since it didn't always, and she pinched the bridge of her nose by the time she reached the point where she gave him his katana back and ran away. "He said he had fun and was happy for the challenge, but I /did/ snap there towards the end of it and I felt as though...I did something wrong, somehow. Too much. Too harsh. I was just...so dizzy. I wanted him to...." she cleared her throat a bit, "Fight me, but he wouldn't slow down. Said he doesn't because he doesn't want to underestimate his enemies. I tried to play, have fun, not lower his guard for attacks but to relax and he wasn't having any of it."

Killian nodded, listening and when she was finished, he gently took her hand in his. "You know he reminds me of me when I was younger. Tense. Unable to relax. Do you remember when I first found out Maddie was being abused? I nearly went to her home and hurt her parents. But you know what made me truly relax? It was when I learned that when I was tense. When I was intense. I was hurting Maddie. Maddie can't handle intense households. They always mean something's about to explode. Now, that's not saying Leo's from the same family I am. I hated my family. But he loves his. And he wants to protect them. The burden on his shoulders is a little heavier. But just because he didn't relax doesn't mean he didn't have fun with the challenge you gave him. Maddie used to not smile, but I always knew when she was internally. It's like that, I'm sure."

"When I did the musical number for their father it was an easy, simple thing. I didn't feel shy or anything about it and it was like a sort of honor." Andrea swallowed, "Then I just...slipped into the musical mindset during Raph and Maddie's fight, they sounded so wonderful together. Then as Leo's and mine started I fell. I feel like...I did before, like I was coming off as creepy and insane and honestly Cassie's comment hasn't really helped my thought process much. Saying I try and sound like some cool hippie or something with my music code and then here I go, rambling off this that and the other thing about...Irish river dances and haunting Japanese wood flutes and whistling mountains and no one probably made any sense of it. Like I was throwing it as an insult and it wasn't meant to be."

"Let me ask you a question." Killian knew that Cassidy sometimes had a mouth before a brain and he knew that once it hit her that she said something wrong, she'd apologize profusely. "Did Leo seem insulted?"

"Confused, and rightfully so, but...not angry or insulted like maybe Raph would've been had I said something like that to him." Andrea shook her head.

"So we know now that he's not angry nor insulted." Killian shook his head from side to side. "Just confused. And while Cassidy's sometimes not the greatest person in the world, talking to her and letting her know that you were hurt by her, is a good place to start. No one should be able to shake your confidence like that, Andy. You're a good student. A fantastic teacher. A good artist and dancer. Your confidence is what makes Maddie stay near you. Feel safe with you. I know for a fact that if there was an attack on this dojo, I'd want no one else on the scene besides you to help me defend this place. Melody riddles or not."

"Cassie's the sweetest which is why I haven't said anything, but I also know she really doesn't understand me or it or how, not like Maddie, so she makes light of it." Andrea took a deep breath and let it out slowly. "I know she'll feel bad about it, that it made me feel self-conscious enough to be embarrassed after my fight. I thought I was okay, I shrugged it off at first, but it struck deeper than I realized." She rubbed her eyes from the wet feeling before they actually turned into tears, "I'm a grown ass woman, I should be able to just deal with it and shrug it off."

"No, sweetheart, that's not how it works." Killian shook his head. "if it was, then Maddie wouldn't be staying up so late at night trying her hardest to ward off sleep like it's the devil. If it was, then I would've made up with my family ages ago, or at the very least forgave them for what they did to me. But that's not how it goes. We hold grudges. We hold fear. We have our weaknesses and there's nothing wrong with that. Always, always be wary of those who say they have none. Always be wary of those who don't show any."

Andrea took another breath and nodded, "Yeah...I'll...I'll make plans to talk to her after I'm done here at work. I dunno if Maddie knows if that's what set me off, either."

"Maddie is very good with intuition. I'm sure she has an idea, but maybe not the whole story." Killian gently squeezed her hand. "You talk to her and let her know. But remember. Teach her gently at first. If that doesn't go, then you can smack around a bit. Just like how we do it in the dojo yeah?"

Andrea laughed a little softly, "Yeah, just like that."

~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Sun Aug 06, 2017 1:39 am

Andrea knew poor Cassidy was going to be losing her mind. Sure enough, Maddie opened the door to her home and the first thing out of the younger girl's mouth was: "What did I do?"

"A misunderstanding." Maddie said gently to Cassidy as she gently opened the door further to let her in. Cassidy looked like a frightful, fearful mess. "I'm going to make you guys coffee. I know what you like Andrea...all sugar all cream maybe a hint of coffee." She strode away into the kitchen to make it and Cassidy immediately went to Andrea.

"What did I do?" She repeated, looking upset. "When you told me to come down here, Maddie sent me a text telling me that I did something awful to you."

Andrea rolled her eyes a bit, "She made you freak out a bit more than necessary. Go on, sit down you silly goose." She motioned to the chair across from her, "You remember how you were ranting about hating Twilight?"

"Yes..." Cassidy said slowly. "But you know that's all in good fun...you and Maddie poke fun at me for it..."

"This isn't anything to do with the movie itself, I just wanted to place your mind in the right time-frame." Andrea waved her hand, "It was after that, pointing out your feelings between the skills of you, me, and Maddie, putting yourself down like you do." She sighed and frowned, "I really do feel like this is so dumb to be upset about."

Andrea continued when Cassidy just stared at her, lost. "You mentioned how I do my music code when I feel like I can get away with a 'mysterious hippie vibe'..." she chewed her bottom lip, "Splinter liked what I had to say, but that was kind of the reason why I passed the spotlight so fast. I may feel self-conscious about it, but I guess...I felt more embarrassed than usual because while said in jest, I felt like I was more than just the playful fun kind of weird for it. But..." she hated the word, "Like a freak. I felt like a freak after my fight with Leo, especially, and knew while I couldn't really hear you, that you had been talking about it. I felt wrong, like it was too much, that I shouldn't have let myself fall so hard."

Cassidy shook her head from side to side wildly. "Oh no. Andy. No. I'm sorry. You know I didn't mean that. When I said my mystery thing, it was to Maddie. But I do admit that I did make fun of your riddles a lot during your fight. I am sorry about that. It was rude and inconsiderate of me. Next time, I'll be careful what I say. I don't want you to feel like an outsider. I know how that looks and feels and we're all outcasts here. Outcasts can't outcast another, that's just wrong and weird and...yeah I am sorry Andy. It was stupid."

"You're such a sweetheart and I wasn't holding any animosity towards you or anything." Andrea soothed her, reaching for her hand and squeezing it, "I knew you meant no harm, but Killian had to tell me to talk to you. He knows the most about how I can get wrapped in my own head about things that shouldn't matter but they do. Thank you for your apology, lil' sis. I know I gotta apologize to Leo on my part for runnin' out, too. That no doubt hurt him more than anything, because he doesn't know what got my panties in a twist, basically."

Cassidy let go of Andrea's hands and wrapped her arms around her neck instead. "I never meant to hurt you, but I'm glad that you told me that I did. Otherwise, I could've kept doing it till it was real bad."

"Catching it early is a good thing yeah...and oh my god that coffee smells so good." Andrea groaned as Cassie pulled away.

"Aww now that we got that all figured out, I'm guessing we can finally go to our sleepover then?" Maddie asked as she walked in with two mugs, the third trailing behind her. "Yay for communication."

"We got a good father figure to get our butts in gear," Andrea laughed, reaching for her mug, "So, how's that charm comin'? The full moon's tomorrow. Ya gunna make it? Like hell there's gunna be 'sleep' in this 'sleep' over for you."

Cassidy shook her head from side to side. 'We need to get you some of those knock out medicines."

Andrea stuck her tongue out, "I might as well practice for when I gotta do patrols with Leo. I've already alerted my dance studio students to the shift in hours."

"Awesome." Maddie said as she flung herself to the couch, the mug that was trailing behind her hovered in front of her now. "Which movie are we watching first?"

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Sun Aug 06, 2017 6:08 pm

"Just where do you think you're going?"

The woman with dark brown hair froze in position as she was walking down the hall. She took a breath and frowned before turning to face the one who had addressed her. "What does it matter to you, Karai? I'm in /New York City/ after years and years. I want to take pictures of it. I'm excited. Get off my back."

"Touchy. What did I do to you? All I asked is where you were going." Karai sauntered up to her, her arms around her waist and she looked Sumi up and down. "Got somewhere to be?"

"Anywhere. Everywhere. I've done nothing but work since I got here. Even employees need a day off. The weapons were a bust. Awful. We can get more." Sumi scowled.

"You're not just an /employee/, Sumi. You're not even being paid. Everything you have..." Karai grabbed the case for Sumi's camera that was resting over her bulky messenger bag with her laptop in it, watching her eyes widen in horror, "Was given to you by our father."

"Your father. I just call him that because you do and I'm supposed to. He's not my father." Sumi scowled, wringing the bag back from her and holding it tight to her chest, "I know I owe him everything. For picking me off the streets because /you/ found a playmate to something so mundane as my camera. But I'm not hurting anyone or anything by stepping out for /one day/ to take /pictures/."

Karai narrowed her eyes, but she huffed and turned on her heel, "Do what you will."

Sumi took no time in bolting down the hallway. When she was outside the building after a few moments, she took her hat from her bag and put it on, walking fast down the sidewalk, trying to get out of the shadow of Shredder's Palace.

~*~

blackrosesparrow: Finally in NYC and my sister made it out to be a crime to go take pictures of something other than stupid cherry blossoms. So how's your morning been?

The message dinged on Donatello's computer just as he had come back with a fresh cup of coffee in his hand. He felt his heart leap and he grinned wide, sitting down so fast in his chair it slid a bit, and he had to use his tip-toes to slide it back, his hands flying on his keyboard. It had been two weeks since he heard from her, so long he had wondered if everything was alright.

purplegadgetsngizmos: Suzume! Oh gosh, that sounds brutal. How are you?! I was worried! My morning is going fine. Not sleeping again. Something planned tonight so everyone's looking forward to it. You've missed a lot.

blackrosesparrow: Have I? Fill me in. I hope it's something good, Don. I really need a pick-me-up.

purplegadgetsngizmos: No, I get that. It's okay. Don knew she was still really upset she hadn't been able to meet him when she flew in a month ago, and since then their talks had been less than when she was overseas in Japan. Yeah, um, so basically my brother Mikey finally announced he had a girlfriend, and since then we've met her friends and Leo and Raph seem to be getting on with them so well there's been jokes of pairing up and matchmaking.

blackrosesparrow: That's...real good, Don. I'm...happy for them. I'm sure you are, too? Don't feel...left out or anything?

Ouch. This was a land-mine question and there really was no good way to answer it. He knew. If that one message wasn't a clue, he was a dumbass, but he'd known for a while now how she felt. It always hurt, having to shut her down when she asked for facecam on Skype, and he'd been glad for Discord when it came around because you could do voice and make your own channel without worry. Suzu had sent him pictures of herself, too, but to retaliate for not letting her see him, she used her tripod to take pictures from behind in pretty lighting with lovely filters and the like, or from the neck-down when she got excited during festivals and wanted to show off her gorgeous kimonos.

blackrosesparrow: You're trying to construct a good reply. You're taking too long. It's fine. I shouldn't have done that. Gomen.

Donny swallowed as she signed out and tightened his fists over his keyboard. Damn it. He just got to say hi to her after a long time and here he goes, fucking it up. This was why long-range relationships didn't work out, it was hard to communicate properly. Not that they were in a relationship.

But he wanted to be, and so did she.

If only it was so easy.

~*~

Sumiko had a permanent frown on her face now as she walked the streets. Nothing was sparking her interest now. All she'd done was take a couple, before she stopped at the coffee shop and talked to Don. She'd been so excited, and now all she was was depressed. She wasn't sure if the pause was because he wanted to say yes or no. All the times they rounded out to that sort of conversation, he always shied away. There'd been several theories, but he was quick to change the subject or go silent until she did.

She didn't know why she kept trying, but she continued to fall into the same trap over and over. There had been many others, both online and in real life that tried to get her to like them, but no matter how many times she got hurt, she still wanted Don.

Now that she thought about it, however, the series of names he used were familiar. Sumi hadn't wanted to make the connection, but it was without a doubt now. The brothers. Four of them. Don, Mikey, Leo, and sometimes mentioned Raph. It made her stomach twist and she stopped, leaning against the wall of whatever shop she'd come across and just...scowled at her feet. Fear. She was scared and she wanted to cry. She wanted to find them, but if Shredder hadn't in ten years then how could she? She was going to be stuck, fighting a fight she didn't want to be in all because of obligation. Just like Karai.

Leo had done just as Karai said he would, trying to convince her to fight against the Shredder instead of with. It had struck her on a deeper level than she left show, but she couldn't just turn on Karai and fight her instead of protect her. That would be against everything. Karai was the biggest reason why she /stayed/.
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:01 pm

"You're going to lose all sense of self and self worth if you stay in that type of toxic environment." A voice said as they stopped right next to her. She was a woman who wore a black jean jacket, torn jeans, but this time she wore a sky blue plaid shirt that was tied at the front to keep it from hanging too weird on her. She had circles under her eyes from lack of sleep...or maybe she never slept it was hard to tell. She stared at Sumiko like she could see more than she just said. "You should get out."

"Oh really? How do you suggest I do that when they are the reason I'm alive?" Sumi recognized her. Wondered if she knew who she was in turn. Granted, her hair was down and she had a hat on, but it wasn't like she wore a mask to hide her identity during that fight. "Think I haven't thought about it before?"

"I think that if you consider that they're your reason for living, they must be your reason to die." The woman countered back. "You're already dying. Soon enough...not much is left."

"I'm aware." Sumiko felt the pain in her chest squeezing her heart. "I don't have anywhere to go. They can and will find me."

"Not me." The woman took something out of her pocket. It was a piece of paper with an odd looking symbol. It was painted in red. "When you're in danger go to this address." She pointed at the written address that was down below the symbol. "And think of safety. Enter the first way you see."

Sumi took the paper and in the time it took to look at the symbol and the address, and look up to where the woman had been, she was gone. Sighing, she tucked it into a small pocket on her messenger bag. If she were to ever run from Shredder's shadow, then this and her camera would be the only two things she would take with her. Today was rather unproductive, so she just decided to wander and wait until the last possible minute before going back.

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Sun Aug 06, 2017 10:05 pm

cassiebaby: No good.

Leo was the one that heard Mikey's cellphone go off. He glanced over at his brother to see his smile fade. His eyeridges furrowed a little. They were going to go patrol together for the night, and Maddie was supposed to come with them since told Donny that she had the spell complete for the vehicles. But something about the way Mikey was frowning didn't look good. "What's wrong?"

Mikey fought with how to reply. "Um...It, uh...looks like it's just us bros tonight." He drooped further the more he thought about it, his fingers still hovering over the keypad for his shell cell.

"Say what now?" Raph came down the stairs, "What's up, Mikey?"

Mikey winced. "Maddie's not...doin' so hot."

"Wanna run that by me again?" Raph scowled a bit. "She sick?"

"Nah, she doesn't really get sick much. Great immune system." Mikey shook his head and finally texted back: /Getting the Raph interrogation./

cassiebaby: /( ⚆ _ ⚆ ) not the greatest time for that/

cassiebaby: /But I mean...I don't want him to worry too much too.../

"So then what's the issue? Why can't she come down?" Raph's brows knitted together and his scowl deepened.

"Well...see...the thing is, she gets nightterrors and...she must've passed out earlier and had one. Cassie is with her." mikester: Maddie is gunna kill me. Prepare the coffin.

cassiebaby: Maddie will give you a glorious death and I a beautiful funeral.

Donny had just come out as Mikey said that and he looked between Leo who turned even more concerned, Raph who was an odd mixture of concern and highly upset, and Mikey who seemed to wish the ground would open up and swallow him. "That's not good. So change of plans, then?"

"If the three of ya want ta go out, then fine. I'm going to Mads' place." Raph stalked towards the door.

"Raph wait! Maddie doesn't like people seeing her like that, don't do it!" Mikey jumped towards his older brother, "Just come with us and let her be, bro!"

"We've waited two weeks for the full moon to go out. I'm not letting her get out of it." Raph grunted.

"If she's not feeling emotionally or physically up to it, Raph, don't force it. That's not good for her or her magic." Don pointed out gently.

"And it's no good for her to tell us that we can't help her out." Raph snapped back before he finally made it out the door.

Mikey looked at Leo with a helpless expression, "I guess we stay here? Raph's gunna bring her down kicking and screaming, I'm sure of it."

Leo just sighed, but he was concerned as hell. "We'll stay down here....and hope that Raph actually doesn't bring her down here kicking and screaming. That'll be tough to hide from..."

~

"What's this about night terrors?" Was the first thing Raph said as Cassidy opened the window for him to come in.

Cassidy knew that Maddie was going to bury her and Mikey together, but...if she also had a vibe. She gestured for him to the couch and sat down. "It's...a common thing with Maddie. If she goes to sleep, she has a bunch of them. She can't breathe, she can't figure out where she is, or who she is. Sometimes, she can't even figure out if anything's real or not. She's been working really hard on that spell for you guys, and...she took too much energy. It drained her enough to make her fall asleep. She texted me and told me that she was tired, so I showed up."

"So where is she and how is she?" Raph narrowed his eyes and he closed the window behind him and turned back to her.

"In the garage." Cassidy nodded over towards where she did most of her rituals. "She calmed down a bit during my texting with Mikey to fall back asleep.....and I should've woken her up. I knew I should've....but...she was so tired...and....well...it got worse...she ran in there after it was over. I was about to call you and ask you to come down after all...she can't keep up like this."

"No, no she can't, and that's why I ignored Mikey and headed over. They expect me to bring her down, so why don't you grab whatever it was she was gunna bring anyway? I'll take care of her." Raph headed for the door and was careful as he opened it and squeezed through, his huge body not meant for human homes like this. He hadn't been in here last time, and so took a moment to look around.

The garage had an alter that was right at the north end of the place. On it was two candles, a knife, and a beautiful cloth. In the garage there was a working bench with tools hanging the walls. There were a few plants here, but not as many as the ones in her living room and kitchen. There was a noise of someone trying very hard to curb their crying and apparently was hidden on the other side of the work bench.

Raphael rubbed his forehead and while on the way here he had used his anger to push him further and faster. Now that he was allowed to breathe, he made sure the door shut firmly and listened to the crying continue without a hitch. As he walked down the short couple steps he walked over to the bench and confirmed what he thought. She had music in her ears and was rocking back and forth. Sighing, he knelt down in her field of view, keeping his gaze steady as she looked up. He waited patiently, too, for he to remove her earbuds.

Maddie felt her stomach go colder, heavier as she looked up. She knew that someone had come in, but she didn't know who. She heard voices, but she couldn't tell. She knew Cassidy was the talking, but she didn't know that Raph was here. With shaking hands, she took her earbuds out, but no words. She tried. She tried to say something, but all she could get out was more tears, and hitched breaths. She knew if she didn't stop, she'd pass out again.

"Hey." He greeted and offered his big hand to her, "Can't help ya much if yer in a tiny space."

Maddie swallowed but there was really nothing to. Instinct for wanting comfort was a little more stronger than the instinct to hide right now and even tough her heart was beating a thousand miles per a minute, she took his hand and let him pull her out of her spot. She tried talking again, but she just crumbled instead.

Raph sat cross-legged and settled her in his lap, rubbing her arm and he rocked her from side to side, "Just breathe, 'lil' black cat. That's all ya gotta do. Breathe fer me."

Breathe. Breathe. Maddie had to close her eyes and just...try to relax in Raphael's hold. Breathe. He smelled of oil, of soap, of blood, of metal. Breathe. He was safer than this home that she worked so hard to be a safe house. He was breathing calmly, soothingly so she tried to match the rhythm to his. It was hard, but the nightmare was loosing it's grip, the music that was playing on her ipod could faintly, just faintly be heard. Breathe.

"That's it. Comin' back ta me? In-Out." Raph hummed, his chest vibrating with the sound, "I like ta think I'm scary enough ta fight away those monsters in deh shadows. Leo 'n' I grew up helpin' Mikey 'n' Donny with theirs. Got ta deh point it depended on what kind of nightmare dey had on who dey'd go ta." He rubbed her back and played with her hair, not too sure what she'd like. Her hair was pretty soft.

No matter which one he chose, it got the same reaction - she melted into his hold. Her breathing was coming out a little steadier and if he rubbed her back, she leaned into it trying to get him to touch as much as he could. If it was her hair, she tilted her head so that he didn't miss a strand...or accidentally brushed her neck. "N-not scary." It was the first sentence she managed to speak without sounding like she was half-way back into crying. "S-safe."

"Yeah. Somethin' like that." Raph's hand was big enough he was able to massage her neck and part of her shoulders fairly easily, "Would ya fight me if I took ya back home?"

That's right. She had that spell. She rubbed her eyes and her breathing started to work up again. She looked over at the garage door and blinked when she saw Cassidy quietly shut it behind her, a bag in her hands. "D- the spell."

"It's in the bag." Cassidy promised. "And you're not activating anything tonight."

"At a certain hour, right?" Raph said instead, hoisting himself up with Maddie secure in his arms bridal-style, "3 o' clock, the witch's hour? You can relax until then, maybe take a nap." He was amused by Cassidy's heated glare, "She'd beat herself up if she didn't do it. I'm offering solutions. Including my own energy if she needs it."

Cassidy was a little surprised at how quickly he said to use his energy...and that he knew that she had a strong point in her magic. She looked at Maddie who seemed to relax considerably at the suggestions, which meant that even though she couldn't really agree...Cassidy let out a long, suffering sigh. "Stubborn. Both of you are stubborn. The Stubborn Lovers, I'm gonna ask Mikey if we can call you guys that. Fine."

Maddie gave her a look. "N-not dating."

"No but you sure are as hell about to be. I think I'm gonna start sending her down to the liar by the time sunset hits...if I want her to actually sleep well..." Cassidy sighed.

"Whatever needs to happen." Raph shrugged, "No use fighting Cassie, either. I've had to stop arguing with Mikey on my end." He rolled his eyes and nodded to the brunette, "Alright, let's get goin'."

~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Sun Aug 06, 2017 11:01 pm

"I'msorryI'msorryI'msorryI'msorry!" Mikey pouted as he came over to greet Maddie after Raph put her down on the couch. He gave her his best pout and baby eyes, "Please don't hate me!"

Cassidy watched as Maddie shook her head. "Not gonna hate you Mikey." Her voice was rough and hoarse from clearly crying for so long. Leo was really concerned when he had seen her in Raph's arms. Her cheeks were flushed red like a fever, and her eyes were swollen, which didn't look good with the circles underneath. She was exhausted, and clearly wasn't in any position to do much besides just tilt over to her side. "Not gonna hate you."

Mikey took that as the okay to give her a big hug, "I'm glad Raph was able to help ya out."

Cassidy smiled warmly as Maddie hugged back, but clearly too exhausted to do much else. "Let her sleep Mikey." She said gently as she went over to him and patted his arm. "Safe zone, she'll be alright here."

"Yeah...okay." Mikey reluctantly pulled away and let Cassie draw him away. He hugged her next and let out a heaving breath. He'd been really worried, but not he was glad to see Maddie was doing alright.

Don came over to Maddie next and offered her some pills, "Just pain killers to help you relax your muscles from being tense for so long. Would you like some tea? Leo makes a good calming tea, as does Splinter."

"I'll go ahead and do that Donny." Leo said as Maddie held her hand out for the pills. "I'll get her water too while I'm in there to take those. Don't let her take them dry."

Raph chuckled and he patted Maddie's shoulder, "I'm gunna go grab somethin' real quick while my bros take care of ya. Hang tight, okay?" With that, he turned and got to the stairs to go to his room.

"It's really nice that you guys are doing this." Cassidy said as she listened to Leo clank around the kitchen, to boil the water for the tea and then to get water for the pills. "I mean, I knew she's gonna crash here, but...instant love is instant."

Mikey grinned, "That's what family's for, Cassie-koi."

Leo came back with the water and Maddie took it gratefully and popped the pills in her mouth. "It'll be a bit on the tea, but...if she falls asleep that's alright too." He said as he watched her in concern. "Where's Raph?"

"Doing things." Cassidy shrugged.

"Grabbing something or another." Donny supplied a bit more helpfully.

"I knew what I was after. M'here." Raph came back down the stairs with whatever he had behind his back, and he felt his face heating up but he unfurled it as he pulled it out, revealing a red knit blanket, and he draped it over Maddie's shoulders, "May be a bit too warm in the summer heat, but it can get cold in the lair here with all the stone. So, ya could just use it here."

"Awwwwwwwwww!" Cassidy immediately gushed.

"That sounded so much like Mikey, I'm a little impressed." Leo admitted looking over at Cassidy.

"I taught her well." Mikey grinned wider than before, looking a lot like the Cheshire Cat, "That's real sweet of ya, /Raphie/."

"Don't call me that." Raph ducked his head into his shoulders, his scowl more grumpy and embarrassed than angry, "S'not like I have a short supply. Ya'll have one, too, so it's no big deal."

The kettle started boiling and Leo went back into the kitchen. A few moments later, he went over to the couch and wasn't surprised to see that Maddie was already asleep. He set the tea down. Even if she didn't drink it, the steam would help. "Does this happen often?" He asked quietly.

Mikey nudged Cassie, "You know more."

"It happens every time she falls asleep. Very rarely does she ever get a good's night rest." Cassidy admitted, as Leo looked up at her. "Only time that happen is if she gets sick, or she gets so tired her body shuts down for a bit."

"Which is why you were so surprised when she slept that first night here." Donny frowned, "Andrea just seems busy, but Maddie is extremely scared. Fear of sleep is awful." He had been very terrified after his travel through time to that awful nightmarish future. It took a long time before he could sleep without that fear. Lately it was more just having too many ideas and needing to put them down. Or projects that needed his attention. He knew both ends of the spectrum.

"What made her so fearful of something like that?" Leo turned to Donny. "A medical condition?"

"Not really." Cassidy shook her head, making Leo's attention turn back. "She...uh...." She shifted since she didn't even tell Mikey this. "She has a lot of bad memories...and a lot of guilt that goes with it. I mean...she remembers every single life she lived so...a lot of the time she gets tormented by it...things she can't or couldn't control or things that she should've done differently....it's safe down here for some reason. I think I gotta reason, but...I don't want to say it aloud. I'm afraid it'll break whatever spells on here to make her actually /sleep/ without it."

"Then it doesn't need to be said." Raph agreed, "Let it be whatever it is. I'll stay with her while she sleeps. Someone mind setting an alarm for two? Want to give Maddie some time to wake up before she does what she does, get some food in her, that sort of thing."

"I'll put it on my alarm clock. I'll stay down here for the night." Cassidy turned to Mikey. "You three go on and protect the city from devastation."

Mikey ruffled Cassidy's hair and kissed he cheek, "Alright. You two don't have too much fun. There's plenty of puzzles and things in my room."

"Go on, get outta here." Raph waved his youngest away, plopping down on the couch Maddie was in and shifted her to rest her head on his lap, settling down.

Leo wasn't going to say anything, but he was impressed that Raph was taking care of Maddie tonight. He had a sneaking suspicion he knew what Cassidy was implying, but he wasn't going to ruin the glow either. "Alright just us three tonight. Donny, you ready? Let's start heading out. We'll be back before sunrise."

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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Mon Aug 07, 2017 1:35 am

"Hey, hang on, guys...I'm picking something up." Donny waved to Leo and Mikey to stop, bringing up a hologram on his wrist, "Looks like there was a shipment down at the docks...I'm getting a lot of readings that there's a bunch of weapons in those crates. They really want firearms. Shredder wants to take New York by force and he's getting desperate."

Leo frowned deeply. He knew that the war was starting to grate on the nerves but for the Shredder to go so far. "We need to get over there before they do. It's bad that Raphael isn't here, but we'll have to work it. When we get there, let's assess the situation and what exactly we're dealing with."

They changed their coarse of their general run through the city towards the docks. Donny was doing his best to multitask so he would have the most information he could gather before they got there, since it took longer than they would've liked. Hunkering down, they watched and observed, and the purple ninja had to let out a slow breath, "Looks like Hun is here for the heavy lifting. We don't have Raph to take him down. I think...we should alert the police and take care of what small-fry we can until they get here. Take them by surprise. I don't...see Karai, but I see that other woman."

Leo wondered what made Karai pick a successor. He wondered what made her think that this was any way a good idea. "We need her distracted. If Karai has her as her second, then we need her to be too busy to call for back up." He paused in thought. "Without Raph, Hun's going to be tougher. Even if we pick off those who are smaller, we don't have the guarantee that Hun wouldn't get in our way. He loves a fight..." He thought about it. "I'm thinking that we get a distraction Karai's Second and Hun and someone else can go around fighting those who are weaker. Of course, we phone it in." He turned to Donny and Mikey. "Good idea?"

"I could distract Hun, I'm annoying enough. Do what I do to Raph and rile him up to make bad decisions." Mikey agreed, pulling out his nun-chucks, "You cool with that, Leo? I'll try and stay out of his reach since that just spells trouble."

"I'll go after Sumiko, then. I got the shocks on my Bo, too, if I need to knock her out." Donny added.

Leo nodded his head and the brothers split after the call was made. He could already hear Mikey taunting Hun and Donny was already getting ready to do his thing. Which left Leo to hang around and see how many of them he could take out just by using the shadows. A small challenge just to make things not so boring.

Donny ran through the shadows for the woman decked in all black and a hood, her duel tanto at her hips ready to go at anytime. She had to get real close to him to do anything, like Raph. He purposefully thumped on the crate she was standing on when he jumped from one to another, getting her attention. She was quick on the draw, and didn't waste anytime attacking him, which meant she either was antsy, or had orders to not let them interfere at any cost.

Block, kick, swipe. Thump, shink, thump-thump. A few grunts, a shout as he got her off her feet by smacking his bo at the back of her knees. Her wide fearful eyes made his heart squeeze as she saw the shocks spark on the metal from the tip of his bo. She knew they were there now. He used them too soon, he was sure, but he...didn't want to fight her. His mind was screaming at him to just end it quickly, and not for the usual reasons. Something about her was seriously off. Desperate.

He tried Leo's usual tactic. Talk her down. "Why is Shredder so adamant about these weapons? A shipment this large just for him? Planning a city takeover?"

"<I'm not about to tell you anything.>" Fast Japanese. In a voice he recognized, but he couldn't put his finger on it. Dread set in. He knew her.

Her grunt and whimper as he smacked her arm and sent her flying off the crate made Donny's heart hammer so fast in his chest he felt light-headed and his breathing picked up. He jumped down with a yell and once again tried to shock her as she heaved herself up. She was a weaker fighter. Not anything like Karai who had the muscle tone and ferocity to fight /Leo/ head on. Sumi got hit several more times by him in the legs and arms and he was working her towards the edge of the dock. "You're not meant for this kind of fighting. I'm not asking you to give up and join us, you'll just say no, I know how that goes."

"<Then what are you saying?!>" She snapped at him, jumping at him and he hissed as his arm got nicked when he blocked, but he pushed her off again.

"To just stay /down/! Please!" Donny's stomach twisted as she reached the edge of the dock, "Just stay down. If you're favored by Karai and Shedder, just say you are too inexperienced to be alone!"

"<I'll get punished a lot worse because I am supposed to be good enough!>" Sumi snapped. "<Karai is the Golden Child! She gets away with it! I won't!>"

The tears in her eyes nearly brought Donny down. "I'm so sorry. I don't know what to tell you." He wasn't a negociator and she was terrified. He could only imagine what she'd go through. Flogging, maybe. Starvation. Extra training even with her injuries. "Please forgive me." He pleaded, and she just closed her eyes, letting him shock her this time as he knocked her off the edge and into the water.

"The police are here! Let's book it!" Mikey's call came over their intercoms.

"You hear that Donny? Let's go." Leo said quickly over the coms and was already getting up from where he had knocked out...twenty of the guys already? He lost count after ten. It had been a hell of a night, and he was concerned about letting Maddie and Cassidy out of the lair. Cassidy didn't have much to offer Karai, but if the Foot were getting desperate, it was a matter of time before whatever agreement Maddie got with them disappeared.

Donny didn't respond, just met up with his brothers with a forlorn look and a bleeding forearm. Mikey winced, "You and Leo gunna make a club? Bleeding arms instead of bleeding hearts?"

"Bleeding heart feels actuate right about now, too." Don mumbled, "Let's go home. Now."

~

"I said I don't want to talk about it, Leo! Stop bringing it up every ten minutes!" Donatello rounded on Leo just after they managed to enter the lair, "I know you're concerned. Thanks. But something happened and I don't want to share!"

Leo was stunned. He knew that he was getting kind of annoyed and that his concern wasn't easy to deal with, but Donny had been abnormally quiet and sad and when he started to press for answers, it was getting worse. "Donny..."

"No. No, just...let me stew in my on /damn/ self pity for a while!" Donny threw his arms up and stalked upstairs, "I'm going to my room instead of my lab. Leave me alone."

Leo was about to say something else when he heard a soft hum come from the couch and he looked over to see that Maddie was wide awake, the knitted blanket was just over her shoulders and she was just watching. "Sorry about that, Maddie. Where's Cassie? In Mikey's room?"

"Knocked like a light." Maddie agreed. "She tried to wait up for you guys. She even had coffee but uh...that knocks her out faster. Caffeine isn't her friend."

Raph came out of the kitchen, two sandwiches in hand, "I heard all that. Somethin' really messed Donny up. So you guys ran into some trouble after all?"

"Firearms at a shipping dock. Hun and a good amount of Foot Ninja. Plus Karai's second in command." Leo said looking over Raph. "You missed out."

"I got to distract Hun until the police got there. That was fun." Mikey huffed, coming over and taking the offered food, "I'm gunna go to my room, then, too. G'night, Leo."

"Goodnight Mikey." Leo watched him leave and then blinked when he saw Maddie start walking towards the stairs. "Where are you going?"

"To listen." Maddie answered with a shrug. "It'll be alright. Us insomniacs have a club I.D you don't have."

"Give him a little punch in the arm from me." Raph called, going to Leo and poking him in the chest with the plate, "Eat. Brood. Donny doesn't yell often. Splinter-sensei made you tea, too, since you hate it when I mess up your favorite. Maddie had a feeling you'd need it. Charm's on the Battle Shell, it's all taken care of."

Leo raised an eyeridge. "She has really good intuition. To be honest, I was expecting her to not be able to do the spell." He admitted as he took the plate from Raphael. "And to be sleeping the whole night away."

"She felt loads better after her nap, some food, and she borrowed some of my energy." Raph shrugged, "I knew she'd hate it if she didn't get it done. She knew I wasn't pushin' her."

Leo nodded, "I think stubborn people have a club I.D no on else does." He said after a moment. "You think Donny'll talk to Maddie?"

"She hasn't come back, so yeah. If anythin' he'll do his thing and grill her about how /she/ feels." Raph chuckled, "Anyway, I've had enough stress tonight worryin' about 'er so I'm gunna hit the hay myself."

"Have a good night, Raph." Leo said gently as he watched his brother leave. He looked up at where Donny and Maddie where and took a breath. He hoped that they were talking.

~

Don had a bandage half wrapped around his arm but he had stopped to type furiously on the laptop he had turned on. While he had told everyone to leave him alone, he hadn't locked his door. When it opened, he was about to glare death and yell at whoever it was when he stopped in his tracks, seeing Madeline. Deflating, he went back to his laptop, a silent agreement she could come in.

Maddie gently closed the door behind her and she took a seat on his bed. If a chaotic room was a sign of an organized mind, this was the proof of it. Books were scattered everywhere from medicine to science fiction. There were papers and journals stacked, clearly filled with so many, many ideas it probably hurt sometimes. Sometimes, he probably wished he could turn it off. She thought about what she wanted to say, "I wanted to tell you thank you." She said after a moment, breaking the silence.

"We often forget that the poor souls who follow Shredder have lives and are more than just a body. The only thing we strive for, really, is a no-kill policy unless there's no choice, or an accident. It happens. Sometimes I wonder if that death is a mercy for the punishment they receive when they go back. A lot of people are put behind bars, ruined when the cops catch them after our scuffles." Don ranted readily enough. He had no reason to hide. She understood. "Sumiko. She's trapped."

Maddie watched him for a little bit, letting him rant and without judgement. She wondered if Sumiko was the same person she had given the piece of paper to. It most likely was. "There's many different methods you can join a battle. You can treat it like a funeral or a joyous occassion. Don't hate the enemy, but don't let them win either. It's a hard balance to do. It's a lot easier to see them as bodies. It's easier to say "they don't matter" too.  There's many ways the Foot can trap you."

"Leo's been trying so hard to get Karai to leave, but if Sumiko had anything to say about it, all the failures she's had she's getting by with the skin of her teeth. Karai is the only one Shredder cares for in any form or fashion, if that. Sumiko might not have been so lucky tonight. It makes me cringe thinking about it..." Donny's brows were knotted tight as he typed more furiously on his laptop. "Damn it, I can't find it...maybe it's on my main computer..."

Maddie nodded and then she thought about it and she spoke softly. "My home's a safehouse. For those who want out. For those who can get out. That's another reason why the Foot want me so badly. I've been helping a lot of theirs escape. What are you looking for?"

"I'm glad you have. It means not everything we've been doing has been for naught all these years." Donny sighed and closed the lid, going back to wrapping his arm, "Sumiko...spoke in Japanese. Very fast, as it's her first language. I could've sworn it sounded familiar to me, but...I'm hoping I don't find what I'm after. That I'm not right."

Maddie nodded her head, "So that's why you got twisted up. You know, I hate to say it, I thought you did kill someone and were upset about it."

"It...felt like it. Sending someone I think I know to be not just punished, but /tortured/ for fucking up and failing isn't...it really isn't a good feeling." Don agreed and rubbed his face, "Thank you, Maddie. For talking to me. I'll apologize to Leo now, I'm sure he's down there poking at the food Raph brought him."

"If it'll help ease your conscious." Maddie said slowly as she stood up and gently walked over and touched his shoulder. "You saved a life tonight." She let his shoulder go. "I should....do something while I'm up and about. Raphael's energy is like the energizer bunny. I'm worried about what would happen if I tried Mikey's."

"I can /only/ imagine." Donny chuckled, standing with her and following her out. His arm would be his reminder through the night to contact Suzume in the morning.

~

"What was that supposed to /be/, Sumiko?!" Karai snapped at the shivering woman as she stripped so she could get into the shower, "You're ridiculously lucky I was able to get you out of some serious hot water! Shredder is /furious/ and you don't /know/ how he is when he's that angry!"

"Oh I don't, do I?" Sumi rounded on Karai, "I'm well aware thanks to the horror stories I hear whispered. I could've been flogged. I could've lost a limb. Been forced to work myself half to death in training, even while soaking wet. Thank you for getting me out of that /hot water/ and speaking of, I'm going to go /take a shower/." She stormed off to her bathroom and slammed the door behind her.

Sumi waited until she heard the door to her room slam closed. She had turned the shower on for cover, but even as she shivered, she bolted out and started putting on clean warm clothes. After she turned the shower off, she grabbed her laptop and camera, as well as the dufflebag she had packed with essentials. Crying internally at the energy drain, let her shadows cloak her as she turned off the lights to her room.

It took...quite a long time to get to the address on the little piece of paper with the symbol. Sumi was sniffling, coughing, and had lost the ability to cloak herself thirty minutes ago. Stumbling into the alleyway, all she saw was a long, brick wall. Glamour. Sighing deeply, she used the symbol and did what the paper said.

It was a near miracle when the door appeared and she very nearly collapsed when she got inside, but managed to close the door behind her and make her way to the couch. Grabbing the blanket that was draped over it she curled up tight, teeth chattering. Her tears flowed freely, and the darkness found her again.

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Mon Aug 07, 2017 2:03 am

Last night had been...brutal. Just too brutal. Leo tried to convince her to stay down there for the rest of the day, but she didn't think that her nighttime/daytime clock could be so easily changed yet, though she did promise Leo that if one of the brothers felt like it...they could go and check on her during the night if she wasn't on patrol and wasn't down with them. She opened the door to her home and tossed her bag over to the couch, not caring where it landed when she heard a noise. As fast as lightening, she pulled out a pocket knife from her pocket and sighed when she saw it was Sumiko. "You're safe here." She said, quickly putting it away and back in her pocket.

"I knew it. I knew who you were." Sumiko's voice was croaky and she collapsed back against the couch after tensing up when she came in, "You'll have to boost your warding. They'll be on the hunt. Night and day..." she was breathing hard through her mouth, her nose stuffed up, "I'm sorry I'm sick. And I only have the bare essentials. Toiletries and a few clothes. My laptop and camera and phone. I need them wiped, but I need my things off of them. They could trace the GPS."

"You rest." Maddie said as she went back to the kitchen. "I know someone whose very good at wiping things down. You can borrow my clothes till you feel better to run around and going crazy. Right now you're on the mend. And sick people don't move. Are you hungry?"

"I can eat after I shower. I'm cold. I did take a dip in the river. He failed to mention that, didn't he?" Sumiko sat up and groaned, "I'll do all the resting you want, but I'm frozen to my bones. It'd give you time to whip something up. Just...eggs would be fine. Normal breakfast food."

"My shower is the room next to my bedroom and diagonal from the guest room. Use whatever you need. I have extra razors underneath where the toilet paper is in the cupboard." Maddie gestured for her to go ahead. "You could've taken one without me here."

"Didn't know where it is, and...well...he did a number on me. After travelling on foot with all my things I was...real tuckered out. I barely made it in the door." Sumi explained, gritting her teeth as she stood up, her tank top showing the bruises on her arms at least, "I'm magical, too. Shadow. Had to use it to get out, and drained myself going as far as I could while cloaked."

Maddie nodded her head. "I know. I felt it on you. Take a shower and I'll also patch you up. You allergic to strong scents at all?"

Sumi only shook her head no before wobbling her way towards the bathroom, "If...if he messages me, don't answer. We haven't been talking so it'd be strange if I say something right away."

Maddie wondered if the "he" was someone familiar. She had a feeling that it was, but she didn't say anything as she watched her go to the bathroom. Instead, she made her way to the kitchen to get her fed.

~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Mon Aug 07, 2017 5:13 pm

Cassidy frowned as she stabbed her drink with her straw. The plastic rubbing against plastic made an annoying squeaky sound, but it was the only way to stir the milkshake. Since it was a girl’s day, Cassidy had went out with a beanie, a bunch of bracelets that she made and a few necklaces that clearly were matching Mikey’s when he wore them. She even went and wore natural make-up too, which Maddie thought looked beautiful on her. Those Youtube beauty tutorials paid off in spades.

Maddie on the other hand, knew that she looked pretty plain. More torn up jeans, the same jean jacket she was used to wearing, and this time she had a black tank-top on that had a skeleton on it with a bunch of flowers. She wore make up too, only mascara and lip gloss. She couldn’t help but to feel like Cassidy was trying to get a modeling job with how good she looked.

Cassidy finally stopped stabbing her more milkshake, which ended the squealing plastic. “I don’t know what to think. I mean, it’s not the first time you hid out people but…do any of the brothers know that?”

“Just Donny.” Maddie said, leaning back into the booth, Cassidy reached over and stole a french fry. “Just him.”

“That man is a saint.” Cassidy frowned. “I heard that something went wrong…went off on Leo for once. I mean, he apologized after, but he still refused to talk about it. Leo said that as long as he talked to someone, he’d let it go.”

“He told me. I won’t tell you what he told me, but he told me.” Maddie agreed, watching Cassidy steal another fry. “You have your own fries.”

“Yours taste better.” Cassidy countered.

“How does that logic even work?”

“It just does.” She shrugged.

“They came from the same batch!” Maddie swiped a few from Cassidy’s and promptly bit into them in retaliation. Cassidy raised an eyebrow, probably trying to dare her into agreeing that stealing food from another person’s plate automatically made it taste better. Instead of falling for it, Maddie took her french fry from her tray. “They taste the same. Anyway. I was going to text Mikey and ask him to ask Donny to come up and do a wipe so that she won’t be found.”

Cassidy frowned, “I mean, I’ll go ahead and ask Donny for you and see what he thinks about it. I’m sure that since he knows you’re a hideaway, he’ll be happy to help so long as it’s…you know…not a dangerous group of people or something.”

“That’s what I’m hoping. I should get the boy’s phone numbers, I only have Mikey and I’m not willing to make him be my go-between yet.”

“Well…Mikey’s a go between no matter which way you cut him.” Cassidy sighed as she picked up her tray, Maddie following suit. “Where are heading to next?”

“I think it’s about time for me to get more jeans…”

“Yeah...you could turn those ones you’re wearing into shorts.”

“Good idea.”
~+~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Mon Aug 07, 2017 6:53 pm

Donny was squirreled away in his lab, his hands under his glasses as his shoulders shook. Everything hurt emotionally. His brain, his heart. He couldn't even /begin/ to fathom this. It was her. He had texted Suzume...no, not Suzume, but /Sumiko/, after waking up from a few hour nap and when she didn't respond for at least an hour. He had asked her if she was okay, just a simple little phrase, and she replied with 'depends on what your idea of okay is' and if that didn't solidify it, he had found and old file of "blackrosesparrow" and him when they had been on skype and he matched her voice to the recording his watch automatically took of every fight in case Leo wanted to review it.

His quiet sobs prevented him from hearing the door when it opened and he nearly jumped ten feet in the air when his shoulder was gently touched. As it was, he had flown out of his chair so hard and fast it knocked into the table behind him and he wiped his eyes quickly and then righted his glasses, trying to see who it was. "C-Cassidy?" He cleared his throat of the waver, "Hi, um..." he looked around, "I don't see Mikey in here so you two aren't..." he had to work out that emotional stopper and 'ahem'ed again, "...aren't trying to destroy anything so that's good. What do you need?"

Cassidy looked at Donny worriedly. "I should be asking you....but...um..." She shifted a little. "Maddie needs a favor from you...she's trying to hide someone from a really bad spot right now...and she thinks their technology's been tampered with..."

"Ah, tracking in case they run. Yes, sure. Wouldn't want Mads to get hurt trying to protect someone. Raph wouldn't like that at all, would he?" Donny shuffled around his desk drawers, swiping away the stray tears that managed to fall in his rapid blinking to clear his focus and he found a few flash drives he had modified, "I'm sure they have information they need or want on their devices so...here's three, one for their phone, laptop, and just an extra that should work if something else doesn't since it has a different plug in. Pitch whatever it is they have somewhere else once they're done downloading, somewhere far away from the safe-house. We can always get them something new."

"Sounds like a blast." Cassidy beamed as she took the flash drives and then paused, shifting. "You doing okay?" She looked at him with concern.

Don swallowed thickly, watching Cassie with downturned corners of his mouth, and he debated. He looked at his computer, where the voice analysis was, and drooped all over again. "No, I'm really not, but...I'm not the one that needs help right now. Go on and take those to Mads..." He paused and went to his pad of sticky notes, writing down the number for his shell-cell and gave it to Cassie, "Tell her to call me if she needs anything else and I'll be over in a giffy."

"You got it." Cassidy shifted again. Thought about it and then said, "Hold on." She started digging around in her pockets, before thinking about it and looked up at Donny. "If Mads call you, tell Mikey and he'll tell you where to go. Then text me and I'll let Maddie get you in."

"Right, since I have yet to be there. Shouldn't it show up for me even if I don't call you since I'm Maddie's friend?" Don asked curiously.

"I honestly don't know how her wards work. You might be right though. Maddie talked to you one on one right? So she'll probably deem you safe and updated her wards while giving them the extra boost. She does that periodically." Cassidy mused, tapping her finger against her lips. "If you can see it then you don't have to tell me...but...if you don't let me know. She doesn't sleep so...sometimes she forgets to include people since she's used to pushing them out."

"Well, Raph certainly found her so." Don smiled, "I like to think I'm just as safe as Raph, but if it goes awry I'll give you a jingle. Go on now, the more time we take the more the guest won't be safe." He shooed her out of his lab and his chest clenched as the door clicked shut. Pressing his forehead against the metal, he sighed deeply and tried to get a hold of himself. There wasn't anything he could do.

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Mon Aug 07, 2017 7:48 pm

"I have to thank you again." Sumi sighed in relief when her computer puttered and short-circuited as Donatello's device finished doing it's thing. He phone had done the same. Her camera she didn't want touched. It wasn't traceable. Won't be needing that third one after all. You still be really careful disposing of it, alright?" she shut the lid and handed it over, "He doesn't know it's me, does he?"

"I don't dive in and reveal people who hide in my home." Maddie said, a little offended as she took the stuff. "All I told Cassidy was that it was a member of the Foot. I said nothing about your status or your name too. Most of the people who do hide here are."

"Right, of course. I really shouldn't be so...disrespectful and keep referring to Donatello as just 'he' and 'him'." Sumi wrapped her arms around herself, curling up on the cot Maddie had given her instead of the couch. She'd put it in a corner, near a majority of her plants and things. "The Shredder and Karai are probably losing their minds. I was supposed to be the ace up their sleeve to take the turtles down because I was supposed to use my shadows to follow them to their lair. That would enable them to track and destroy it. I kept telling them I wasn't ready as I scoured New York for somewhere to run."

Maddie nodded, "Smart choice." She was thankful that she had the foresight to have made the protection charm the way she had. She was also thankful that she had lessened it a bit on the garage too. This could have gone in so many different directions, but she was thankful that she listened to her intuition. It never steered her wrong yet. "Considering all you would be reporting to them is a way to get lost." She shrugged. "It's going to get worse now."

"It's gotten to the point where it's now or never. Ten years worth of off and on fighting. They don't kill and that's why this is going on so long." Sumi agreed and coughed a bit, sounding much like a seal and she groaned as she felt her rib-cage rattle, "I want...to say I'm sorry, but you'll just shrug me off. You did give me that paper knowing what would happen. Is there a plan? Or just take it as it comes?"

Maddie shook her head from side to side. "The Shredder knows that he's running out of time. He's getting older, and the turtles are twice as young as he is. They'll out live him at this point, and there's no promise if Karai will continue the Foot. I think she will. I think that Leo's wasting his breath trying to get her to switch. I think he's starting to realize that, too. It's disheartening. She could've been a good ninja. If she so tried."

"Both of them are going to have to be killed. Who does it, doesn't matter at this point, just as long as it's done. It won't be me, because I have a strong feeling about pitting family members against each other. Karai was like my sister for a long time, even if I won't fight her fight." Sumi explained.

"We'll see what happens." Maddie said quietly, holding the electronics a little closer to her. "When it's war, you don't have a choice on who you kill or when and where. When it's war, it's you or them. Always choose you. Even when you don't want to."

"If I am given no choice, then perhaps." Sumi conceded tiredly with a deep frown, "Message Don and tell him I said thank you? Please?" She asked as she settled back down on the cot, hugging the blanket close.

"I will." Maddie said gently as she pulled out her phone, ready to text and headed out of her home so that she could dispose of the electronics.

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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Mon Aug 07, 2017 10:03 pm

"Soooo, what's on your mind?" Mikey asked as they crossed the rooftops away from the police station. General muggers and potential rapists and other riff-raff trying to cause problems was what the group had decided on to for practice. If anything to do with the Foot or Purple Dragons came up, then they were to call in backup or the police. There wasn't much of a chance of that happening, however, because they were all scrambling to find one of their own. That was all Mikey was aware of.

"Hmm?" Cassidy looked over at him as they jumped from roof to roof. It was exciting and thrilling and she was really happy that she had brushed up a bit on how to fight. Her methods were a little...unorganized, but she was trying and Mikey was stronger than she was so anything she screwed up on was easily fixed. "Do I have my thinking face on?" Sometimes, she didn't even know when she had it on. Just suddenly go into dream world and boom, they'd be across the state already.

"That, and you've been pretty down lately. Is it Donny?" Mikey asked Cassidy as he got them perched up on a high roof and they could see for a ways in all directions, taking a break as they got somebody dropped off for being a thief. A small victory for a newbie to patrol. "He's been out of sorts all weekend. I suggested that after the four of us bros go for a run after the LA couple that Maddie and Donny take up the start of the next session. Day...five? Since he's the only one who doesn't have a set person he could cycle. Maddie and him seem to mesh the best outside of her and Raph, so I thought it'd help."

"I think it would, I know that Maddie's worried." Cassidy bit her lip and she halted on the rooftop. "I feel bad for him. I really don't know what happened during that big fight you guys got into without Raph, but...Donny's looking so lost and brokehearted. Like...like if you died on me Mikey. Or disappeared."

"Yeah..." Mikey sighed deeply and looked out at his beloved city, watching the zooming lights of cars and looked up at the hazy summer night, not even able to see the moon. "Sumiko...I think Donny knew her, and tried to do what Leo does with Karai and failed and he's beating himself up over it. Of course. That's just my theory. I was trying not to get caught and crushed by a dude bigger than Raph."

Cassidy winced. "Hun right? Oh man, I don't want to be around if he's around. I'm tiny compared to you and I'm sure I'm like...a stick compared to that guy." She walked up behind him and wrapped her arms around his middle, pressing her cheek against his shell. "You guys try so hard to save people. It hurts when you can't. I know it makes Leo try harder, but this is the first time Donny's trying to save someone from a really bad fate. But I think...I think he found someone that could be like me and you. I think that...I think that he wanted it so much, but was afraid to make the wrong move or...be seen."

"It could be." Mikey turned in her grip and wrapped her up, rested his cheek on the top of her head, heaving a great sigh. "I love you, Cassidy. Donny'll be alright. He's got all of us and we'll bring him back up to normal Donny-speed in no time. After all, Maddie's got that refugee, doesn't she? That's a small assurance that we helped somebody, somewhere."

"I think she told Donny the same thing." Cassidy hummed softly as she hugged him tightly, listening to the steady beat of his heart. "I love you, too. We're going to be a-okay someday. Today just isn't that day and that's okay."

"It's okay to not be okay." Mikey echoed and gave her a tiny squeeze before letting her go and he leaned down to give her a small kiss, "Let's move on. Beating up bad guys always helps to feel better for a while."

~*~

"Let's go on a date."

And as soon a he said it Raph's eyes widened and he was afraid Maddie would lose her balance and fall off the roof, but she managed to catch herself in time to tumble over the edge. "Bad timing, I'm sorry! It just...popped out. I'm sorry. You alright?"

"I'm good." Maddie said, with a wince. She was going to find a bruise somewhere on her body and her hands were not happy with slapping the ground. They ached and she was certain that they were going to be a bright red. She wouldn't be surprised if she got a bruise from that either. She got herself up, and the previous...statement...came back full force. She felt her cheeks warm, but she wasn't certain if they were red hot or not. "You...uh...wanted to date...um me?"

Raphael's own face was beginning to match his bandanna. "Uh...yeah. Mikey 'n' Cassie rib us all de time fer it, but I...I, uh..." he rubbed the back of his neck, "If they can do it why not us? That's...what I'm thinkin'." He shifted, "If not...I would get it. It's cool. Shouldn't jump on de first chance I got, right? Don't wanna...jump de gun or nothin'."

Maddie's lips quirked into a smile as she watched him. "Do you mind if I ask...just...one question? I'm not trying to, uh, fish for compliments or anything, but uh...why me? I mean...I know why you on my end of the spectrum. Straightforward, honest, kindhearted,...honestly I didn't think to ask you 'cause I thought that you were going to want to try to get a feel for me more...or uh...something."

"Get a /feel/ for ya, huh? Interesting choice of words." Raph smirked at her, and it went wider as she flushed deeper, "Yeah, though...along those same lines. Ya don't beat around de bush or make things too complicated. It's...easy. Natural, with ya. Andrea put it really well, we just mesh good together. We understand each other in our own way, like ya get Donny in yer own way."

Maddie relaxed, her cheeks still heated. "Insomniacs. So...a date right?" She took a step forward. She wasn't...good at playing coy. In fact, it was probably laughable that she was even trying to flirt. Raph was more easy and direct, but...fun couldn't hurt. He teased her after all. "I'd like to."

"Yeah?" Raph's smirk morphed into a more genuine smile while still being his usual self, and his amber eyes darted up and down her form, his head slightly tilted down and to the side. He shifted shoulders-first towards her in-step with her moving closer, "S'pose I should've been askin' what ya like ta do fer a hobby, huh? Yer usual hangouts 'n' things. Casey 'n' I have this bar we go ta sometimes. Good dance floor, dark so I can come in de back 'n' not be seen. Course I also got a disguise, but my size alone freaks people out, too."

"I sometimes do a little bit of mixology. I like dancing." Maddie smiled as she took another. She hadn't missed the way that he looked at her up and down. She wasn't sure if it was the first time he was actually looking at her form, or if it was something else. But it made butterflies start up in her stomach, her heart hammering in her chest. "Gardening is one though you knew that from all my plants. I also started working at Killian's dojo again. I'm teaching the adults how to defend themselves so maybe it'll ease some of the burden off of saving a bunch of people. I'm also an unapologetic bookworm and a mechanic. I'd love to learn how to ride a motorcycle though."

"Is that /so/?" Raph full out grinned now, and he took his first attempt to touch her in a way that wasn't /entirely/ meant for friends, his hand on her hip and he drew closer as he brought her to him. "Just so happens I have a good ol' bike I enjoy tunin' every so often. You've seen it, but maybe I can take ya fer a spin sometime? Just fly through de empty streets, eh? Casey might be able ta get Kyle to clear some fer me, ya think? Wouldn't use it fer teachin', but Kyle might have somethin' fer beginners. It'd also be way too huge for ya ta control. No offense, but I got more leg strength 'n' it's a beast like me."

"Strength wise or sexually or both?" Maddie couldn't help that one, that one slipped right out and she turned bright pink. "You can ignore that one, but...I'd love to go on a spin. It sounds like fun." She placed her hands on his biceps. She could stand either tippy-toe if that was what he was leaning for, or if she was just supposed to go into a hug. He was a lot smoother than she was, and she liked how despite that it made her awkward, it was the best feeling to have.

"Don't got an answer fer de sex one, but definitely strength." Raph cleared his throat a bit and chuckled. His teeth caught his lip for a brief second and he lost his nerve, instead ducking his head to brush his nose against her neck and shoulder, breathing her in and let his approving rumble vibrate his chest. Her small hands felt...nice, on his skin, and his heart was going a mile a minute. Maybe not yet, but the closeness was more than he could've asked for.

Maddie hummed softly as he nuzzled against her neck, the flush creep up on her skin and she felt the butterflies multiply as well as the heat. His skin was different from hers. Scaly, but not in a horrible way. His scent was overwhelming, and she felt safe. She felt unafraid. She rubbed her nose against his neck, before placing her forehead against his shoulder, her arms coming to wrap around him a little more. It probably looked funny. He was huge, and compared to him she was pretty small. But she didn't feel like that. She felt like they stood equally.

Raph chuckled a bit more deeply suddenly, "I feel like we really are just cats rubbin' against each other. It's...nice. I...uh...liked cuddling you, when ya were havin' that bad night."

"I liked it when you were touching me." Maddie agreed, her voice light. "I mean, it's either we do this, or...uh...other things happen. I forgot to ask Donny that question I was supposed to ask him for Cassidy's sake oh well...but uh...yeah...I'll shut up and enjoy this now."

Raph did laugh out loud, "I know what yer talkin' about. Donny has learned a lot in his tech since de first time he tested us, and I think he's been comin' up with a way to re-do it. Right now, we say no, we aren't compatible, or it would be highly unlikely. Safety is never somethin' to scoff at, though, just in case." He was calm about the subject, and he pulled away to look down at her, his expression soft. Probably softer than she'd ever seen him. "I think that's far enough in our...uh...relationship stage we won't have ta worry about it right now. Let's just relax, yeah? Let it happen, as we've been doin'."

"That sounds good to me." Maddie smiled warmly. "Though if I get first hit on the bad guy, I decide what we're doing for the date."

"It's a challenge...my little black cat." He tested it, liking how it sounded to him, but he watched her closely to see if she hated it.

All Maddie did was give him a wink. "Cat's are faster than turtles too." She said as she got out of his grip. "Never said I'll play fair!" She called over her shoulder as she ran.

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:21 am

Leo stopped at one of the nearby rooftops sighing a little. Today was just a day filled with small problems rather than the Foot. It was a little weird to him to hear that they were trying to find someone. He worried that it was Maddie, but she highly doubted it. He didn't know who else it could be, besides the girl that Donny knocked into the river.

He let the thought slide for now as he looked over at Andrea. She was good at what she did. They fought well together and they seemed to have a method of how to get the bad guys cornered, surrendered, and turned in without too many words to pass them. "What kind of dancing do you teach?" It was the first time in a long time that he broke the silence. For the whole night so far, it was mostly small conversations, but nothing huge. He didn't know if it was because Andrea was tired and was fighting off the need to sleep, or if it was just that they didn't know how to begin one.

He was going to go with the latter, honestly.
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Tue Aug 08, 2017 1:13 pm

Andrea looked up at him with a bit of a start, taken aback by the question, but she quickly smiled and looked back out at the city from their little spot, "When I say dance studio or dance class, people immediately think ballet, right? Well...no. I watched a lot of musicals growing up, like Sound of Music and Anna and the King - live action as well as animated - and I'm a huge Disney nerd. The walls of my studio are covered with life-size hand-painted scene captures of princess with their princess dancing. I even hired some models for each couple so I could do them realistically and make them more relate-able than distorted Disney proportions like the tiny waists and long limbs. Anyway, I rambled. I teach ballroom dancing along-side ballet as well as the fox-trot for teens and adults. I teach much more than that. If you've ever seen or heard of Dancing with the Stars I watch that religiously. I don't teach tango, mainly because that's...a bit outside my own comfort zone to learn let alone teach. Gotta know something before you pass it on, right?"

Andrea tucked her hair behind her ear. She'd gotten it dyed so the top part of her hair to about her neck was a darker color and it was faded gradually in a gradient where her tips were lightened to blond, and she looked like a lit match but she had needed something to lift her spirits and going crazy with her hair at the salon had made her giddy. Her nails were also decorated for the upcoming 4th of July, with her thumb in blue with stars, and the rest looking like Cassidy's name-sake with the diagonal red and white stripes, all of it shimmery and sparkly. "I want to really apologize to you, Leo."

He was quite impressed with her resume of the different kind of dances. He didn't think that the ballroom dancing would be popular, but he supposed that if there was a couple that wanted to learn it for a wedding, or a teenager doing it for prom or something of the sort, he could see it. He was a little surprised at her apology though. "What do you mean?" He asked, staring at her. "You mean from the sparring match?"

She finally turned in place from where she was sitting on the edge of the roof they were on, "You were honest when you said you had fun during our spar session, and I was so blinded by my own self-doubt that I didn't see it that way. I know I confused and hurt you when I ran out of there. Cassidy and I even had to talk, after Killian went into sensei-father mode and reminded me that it was okay to be upset by what she said about me trying to be a 'mysterious hippie' with my music code. It went to my head when it shouldn't have and I let it get out of hand."

Leo nodded, "Thank you. I'm glad that you believe me when I told you that I had fun. You don't have to apologize though. I had a feeling that you were self-conscious about what you were saying. You went deep, and sometimes that can be terrifying or plan weird to people. But it wasn't to me. I'm glad you worked things out between you and Cassidy, too. That's good."

Andrea gave him a small smile, "I'm sorry it took so long for me to say anything. I...feel awkward coming down to the lair by myself."

Leo frowned, "Why would you feel awkward coming down? Do we make you feel uncomfortable or something?"

"Not in the way you might be thinking." Andrea said slowly, "I don't...feel welcome, and I feel out of place." She sighed, "Maddie, even taking Raph out of the picture, is welcome because of Mikey and she also put spells up to protect your home. Cassidy is getting closer and closer to basically moving in because she might as well be married to Mikey. Splinter liked me in that brief short moment, but besides that all I did was mouth off here and there and I went little crazy with my music code. Honestly, Leo...If I went down there unannounced one night out of the blue, who'd greet me? Everyone would ask, 'hey what's up, why ya here?' and assume I need something, and it's not because I want to just...hang out. Mingle. Be. It would be different than popping by Maddie's and hearing her say 'hey, what a surprise. Let me put on a pot of coffee'."

Leo's smile softened. "I'd greet you. Just because my brother's might ask what's up, doesn't always mean you need a reason. It's just a conversation starter. I understand the need and want to get away from the same four walls. I can't, unless it's doing this or taking extra runs of course, but...it's a nice thing to have. The ability to get away. You're welcomed, because you're Cassidy's and Maddie's older sister. You're welcomed, because you're our friend. You never need a reason to come into our home."

Andrea's head perked and her eyes sparked with an idea. She liked his smile, how he moved as he talked, and how he focused his attention on what she was saying. He didn't have a way out, but she could fix that. "I just didn't know how to go about it, I guess. Maddie and Cassie are so at ease and go with everyone's ebb and flow really well. I still feel like a stranger, and I've been uncertain how to carve out my place among the lot of you. I'll try a little harder, after tonight. I've been trying to change my sleep schedule around, so I'll need something to do, yeah?"

"We have things that we can do. Donny's usually in his lab. Mikey and Raph and lately Cassidy been trying to kill each other in video games or oddly enough working together on a one player one to reach the end. I like to read and sometimes I mediate so you're always welcomed to join me. Unfortunately, Maddie doesn't come down nearly enough as she should, so I don't know what she does. I heard from Raph she has a garden to take care of during the daytime, and she does classes at night, so...I may not see what she does. But we do have things, and if you want to bring something you want to do...go ahead. We'll make a space for you." Leo assured her gently, walking up to her and placing a gently hand on her shoulder. "So don't fret about it."

That little action surprised her, and not only did her heart jump to her throat and make her breath catch, but her stomach did flip-flops. She felt his reassurance through his touch, and she hadn't been aware that she had been so tense until it melted away the longer he keep it there, like an anchor. A breathy 'heh' accompanied a half-smile and she looked up at him, "Are you even aware of what you're doing? How your energy fluxes?"

"If you're talking about relaxing you, I'm aware that I'm doing my best to." Leo said gently as he let go of her shoulder. "But I'm not sure about the energy. I don't see what you see."

"I'm...for once I don't mean my music code. I...had some basis behind my words when I mentioned Japanese mountains and valleys and oceans." Andrea felt her face get warm and she pulled out her phone, but kept talking while she looked for something, "Some of my first watercolor paintings were inspired by Japanese art. I dove into the history of it, and one thing led to another, ya know? I know about auras, and chakras and zen. Your energy, I'm not sure if it's a natural thing or how you grew up and trained, but you mesh. It changes depending on who you're interacting with, from what I've seen anyway. The way you move, your tone of voice, it's not just you knowing your brothers. Your very energy goes into your actions." She found what she was after and gave him her phone. On it was a simple ink picture of a mountain 'scape on toned paper, with red being the only color that stood out. It definitely looked like it could be Japanese in origin.

"That's impressive." Leo said as he smiled at the artwork. It was clear that she put a lot of soul and time into it and it was gorgeous. He handed her the phone back and continued with the conversation. "I believe that's just my nature, of wanting to be a good leader and have people be comfortable with me. I do train in auras, in chakras. Not Zen unfortunately, though I do meditate, we all do. We all focus and hone our senses the best that we can. I suppose that's also it, too. Natural and trained."

"A mixture of both. That's good." She itched to take his hand and mull over it. The texture, the size, and the shape. That might be a bit too personal yet, though. She put her phone back in her pocket, "I have always heard the notes of someone's energy, and I guess when I found out how to meditate and the premise behind it, things started to fall into place. So...yeah. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'd enjoy it. With you. Reading, meditating. I like all sots of teas, besides oolong. I'm...pretty confident in the idea that you and I might have some real deep conversations in the future."

Leo smiled warmly at her, "I look forward to them. The conversations and you hanging with me. The mundane probably won't be so boring so long as I have someone to share them with."

She wouldn't say it out loud. In fact she was going to stay away from speaking music code for a while, unless asked. Yet, this was what she wanted before. Slow and methodical, taking the information in as it came instead of the dizzying tempo as his mind went a mile a minute. She was learning more about him as the night went, just as he was about her. It was her mistake for being so pushy and she really should have just gone with martial arts instead of dance first, but lesson learned, and she could do better next time. "Something along those lines, for sure. I think for now, break time's over and we should get back on track." She stood up and patted his arm, motioning for him to lead the way again to go back on patrol.

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Wed Aug 09, 2017 1:36 am

"The last couple nights have been pretty interesting." Don told Maddie as they got up on a water tower so Don could use one of his devices to tap into the police scanner. They'd put away a couple criminals so far, but haven't really talked outside of game plans. "When Leo came home from his run with Andrea, Raph and Mikey were waiting and ready to tease and rib him about it, but they completely aborted and wished him a good night instead. Then yesterday for patrol, it was the most easygoing it's been in a while. Mikey and Raph have whispered that you might've just been right, about what you said during sparing."

Maddie smiled. "Andrea's been walking a little taller and she certainly has more confidence now that she started talking to Leo. You mean when I said that he would give an inch and she wouldn't take a mile?"

"Yes, that one. I do have to ask what /you/ meant by that since they seem to have their own opinion." Don asked as he made a soft 'ahah' sound and clicked away some more.

She watched Donny work with a small sense of pride and she thought about what she was going to say. "You...can't really push Leo, if you do, he pushes back. He's an observer. He watches and reacts to the environment around him. He's used to being taken advantaged of. Karai made sure he had practice in that. That doesn't mean that if someone needs something from him, he wouldn't. When Andrea relaxed and did her thing, and then dropped all confidence, Leo reacted as a friend, not as a mentor. I'm sure he offered her some in return for her showing vulnerability. It's a dangerous thing to show...and Leo knows that. Which is why I said he'd give an inch. She wouldn't take a mile, she won't go too far with it. She knows that there's boundaries, she knows that your guys lives aren't...stable. She understands Leo's position, too."

"Inch by inch, piece by piece. That makes sense." Don nodded and looked up at her, pushing his glasses up his nose, "Raph mentioned that you two had a date planned this weekend. To me, anyway, because he needed tools for his bike. He's tuning it so it rides a little smoother rather than for power and speed since he's going to have a passenger."

"Yeah," Maddie rubbed the back of her neck sheepishly, her cheeks tinted a little pink. "He beat me to a bad guy and so he got to choose what he wanted to do." She looked at Donny curiously. "Does....um....does it bother you?"

"What? Why would it bother me? I certainly was the least upset about Mikey and Cassidy, so why would it for you and Raph?" Don chuckled in amusement and got up to balance across the water tower to get closer to her, and sat down again, "I'm real happy about it, actually. Mikey teased him but not once did he dispute it, which meant to all of us he was thinking about it. Especially since Mikey did it first, the /baby/ of the family. It's always been no one gets away Scott free about anything. If one gets punished, we all got punished. No favoritism. No one felt like they were less, at least by our father. We would fight and put each other down, but there's four of us and we all wanted the spotlight until we learned more and grew, found our own likes and dislikes and unique ways of thinking. So, if Mikey got to have a girlfriend it crossed all our minds that maybe not all is lost like we thought we were."

Maddie could understand that. If one could have a girlfriend last for eight fucking years, then yeah...a long term relationship...marriage even...it wasn't too far off. "She always did know how to bring in hope when people were starting to feel the effects of it being lost." She admitted. "I suppose my question was a bit strange. Considering the factors and the different situations." She moved her legs to get in a better position, though honestly nothing was going to be comfortable and standing was gonna be a bitch. "I just remembered the last time we had this conversation that's all."

"Is that your magic talking? Because this is the first time we've talked about it." Don arched a brow ridge at her.

Maddie slapped her forehead. "We're in twenty-seventeen right? Yeah it's my magic talking. I'm sorry. I slip."

"What, thinking it was Ten-seventeen?" Donny reached out and poked her knee, "The idea of a past life is an interesting topic. Not many believe in it. Honestly, I think it's scary thinking that at the end of this life that's that. Then what would be the point of it all? At least you get to remember and adapt and /really/ learn from your mistakes."

"If you remember them." Maddie smiled at him as she poked him back teasingly on the arm. "You'd be surprised how many people I cross all the time. Different names, different occupations, different situations, but all the same soul. It's incredible...and it doesn't feel so lonely. I would hate it if it was the "end". It's just as scary as...well...being buried alive in my opinion."

"I do." Maddie nodded with a bright smile on her face. "Splinter was one of the easiest ones to recognize. He's always a father figure, a teacher, or mentor of something or another. He was also always a father to one of you."

"Cycling through until he got the real challenge of all four." Donny tapped his chin with a light smile, "Let's break it down. Who's Mikey to you?"

"A good friend. Who has the misfortune of falling for Cassidy in the hardest of ways. I'll name a few. One time he was a stable-boy and Cassidy was royalty. They eloped. And then there was one where he was a thief and she was a noble. They eloped. And then there was one where he was an assassin and she was his target and you guessed it....they eloped."

Maddie snickered as she counted them down on her fingers. "I cross him in weird ways too. As a thief, he tried to rob me, but he caught the tail end of my blade and he was really shocked that I managed to do it, but he asked me how to do the trick rather than complain that I was a woman. And when he was a prince, I was summoned to the castle for some reason or another, I can't remember and we ran into each other when we were both trying to sneak /out/. I hate ceremonies."

"I would love to see it happen honestly. Though maybe I could get ordained...maybe have them actually do a proper wedding for once....though I honestly doubt they'd go for it. Cassidy isn't the type. She likes the thrill." Maddie shook her head from side to side with an amused sigh.

"We can have a home wedding and pretend, either before or after the elopement." Donny offered instead, "So, go on. Tell me all about Raph."

Her cheeks blushed and she knocked her shoulder into his. It was weird, for him to say it again, but it was nice. "He always needed a fight. All the time. No matter what era, he was always a fighter of some sort. Mercenary, assassin, guard, bodyguard, ninja, samurai, warrior, wrestler, I have met them all. He was always the type that would do a fight rather than ask questions, too. When I first met him, he arrested me for being a witch. I docked him across the face and managed to escape. He hunted me down and somehow someway we both found out that our country was betrayed by another country and that a war was brewing and...we became allies. We always kind of start off on the wrong foot. Mostly because I have the bad habit of seeing him and going "hey I know you! You're so and so" and he's always like "what the fuck is wrong with you'. Honestly, the whole me avoiding Leo's question could have gone so much worse. I really thought he was going to hit me with the sai."

"Maybe on the head with the back of it. He does it to Mikey enough he knows how to do it without hurting you too bad." Donny rubbed the back of his own dome head, "That fits Raph. To a T. I like that a lot, actually. He might get a kick out of it, too, once you two get warmed up enough for you to mention past lives to him. Right now he's more than content to get to know /you/ as you are. He wouldn't like having standards to live up to."

"You know, he told me that once." Maddie said with a softened smile. "That he didn't want to live up to standards. So I told him that I'd never tell him anything he didn't specifically want to know. Which is why I haven't told him about the past life thing. He's not the type to...really care about that kind of thing. Being a fighter means you can die at any time. So, best to live in the moment. Though I remember how much you hated that."

"Oh? Are we doing a segway into me, now?" Donny tilted his head at her, "Keep goin'. I for one am very interested, obviously. I just didn't want to seem vain and ask about me right away."

"I could skip you and go to Leo." Maddie's grinned at him teasingly.

Donny chuckled and shrugged, "Sure, me last. Honestly, with Leo you seemed to read him like an open book, like it was pretty predictable what he would or wouldn't do."

"This is going to sound a little bizarre so," Maddie took a breath. "In one lifetime, we were actually pretty good friends. He was a samurai and I was part of a samurai family...so no surprise when I married a Samurai. Anyway moving forward, he noticed that not only did I carry my kodachi around, but that I was pretty decent at using knives. He taught me how to use a sword. He was good at it. He was really good at it. He just barely missed Andrea in that lifetime. They just crossed paths, just the once. Not even really a hello. But they caught each other's eye and I remember seeing it. I remember him shrugging it off when he never saw her again. He fights the same way...and his personality hasn't changed. He's like a moving river. He changes when he needs to, he slows, he speeds up, he listens, he observes, but the biggest difference between this life and the one that he missed out on....is that he actually seemed to smarten himself up. He disappeared for a few lifetimes."

"Wait...when you say Leo never saw Andrea again, do you mean in /that/ lifetime or...never?" Don didn't really give her a chance to respond, answering his own question, "That's...kinda heartbreaking, that you, Raph, Cassie and Mikey all got to have each other but he didn't. It would kinda make sense, considering how arms-length they are while the flames sparked fast for you and Raph and Mikey and Cassie were able to hold out so long."

"I crossed Andrea three times. I crossed Leo only once." Maddie said gently. "She hated it...really. She knows in this lifetime that I know everyone's past life. It's why I gave Mikey and Cassidy my hide out. Honestly...if this is the worst they can do in this lifetime, I'm worried about the next...she thinks she doesn't have one. But I know better. It's just going to be piece by piece, inch by inch." She looked at Donny with a small smile. "So, given all the factors of who I met in my past life, who you do you think you were to me in the past?"

"I am going to go out on a limb, and say the elder brother to you and Cassidy. You and Cassie act /way/ too much like Raph and Mikey, it's kind of scary, and I wouldn't have let anyone in to my room, but I let you, and then Cassie..." He cleared his throat, "She...uh, saw me...crying in my lab when she came to get those devices."

"It's funny because Cassie was the middle child too." Maddie smiled as she brought her legs up and tucked them under her chin. "She was the one that always comforted you when you were really down. She's seen you stressed out...under pressure....you were a learning how to be a healer. Every time you lost someone you'd lock yourself up. You'd never talk to our parents. But you'd talk to me, if Cassidy managed to persuade you to."

"She did give me your number and told me to ask Mikey for directions to your place." Don smiled and nodded, "Healer to Raph's fighter. Sounds about right. I would've been Raph's brother-in-law, then, numerous times if not his real brother. Cassidy is real easy to talk to, just like you are."

"Oh when you first met him, you hated it. You knew that I was magic and you were super protective." Maddie laughed a little. "I mean...Cassidy was in love with someone of a higher status so....that was already grating on your nerves and you were just...waiting to hear if she's been dead or something. Then you meet Raph, and we're on the brink of war..." She trailed off. "We've been siblings more than once. Cassidy was just a few times with us together. You never were a sibling to Andrea. But you and your brothers have been siblings, too. You and Mikey and Raph mostly since Leo...decided to stay stagnant for a while." She nodded her head a little and then she spoke confidently. "It wasn't your fault by the way that I died."

"That sounds absolutely ridiculous but I see it happening and it feels so true." Donny laughed a bit louder, "I'm glad, even if I thought I failed you, that my skills were no doubt good enough that if I couldn't do anything, that I did my best. There, feel better about any self-doubt you may have heard as a spirit before you moved on?"

Maddie rubbed his shoulder. "You did enough. You did save her. We kept her hidden underneath the floorboards." She smiled gently. "No one knew. I'm just sorry that you had to feel the burnt of it. Baby siblings are the hardest to lose. I know that."

"Mm..." Don hummed at that, and took a deep breath and let it out heavily, "Alright...just tell me. Is my love live nearly as tragic as Andrea's, wandering and not finding anyone?"

"No. You always found her. But you always had to give up something." Maddie said softly. "Romeo and Juliet. Always opposites. You either started out tragically or you ended tragically. I believe my death was what caused the spark to begin with in that lifetime....you both seemed to not be able to love without feeling an incredible amount of guilt first. Or betrayal."

Don closed his eyes, immediately thinking of Suzume, or Sumiko. Whatever she went by. Tragic beginning or tragic end. This time, probably both. "In the end, we all have family and each other, at least." He said with a forlorn tone, just as the alarm on his watch went off, and he jumped, then shook his head, "I guess...that's our cue."

Maddie stood up and she gently touched his shoulder again. "Not this lifetime." She promised. "Let's go."

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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:22 am

mikester: wear something that can easily be taken off

Cassidy kind of hoped that this was what he had in mind when he asked her that. She waited on the rooftop on a building nearby Maddie's, her dress gently blowing in the summer breeze. She didn't wear a bra, she had a feeling that she needed to be comfortable and Maddie told her not to and she made sure at least her panties was womanly enough. It made her fidget, nervously in thought about what he had planned. She hoped, but she didn't want to pressure.

"Pretty in pink, huh babe?" Mikey flipped out of the shadows and landed easily on his toes, grinning wide at her. He held up his picnic basket and came up to give her a smooch on the cheek, "To the park?"

Cassidy grinned brightly. "Sounds like fun to me. I'll follow you. Unless you want to carry me?"

"I could carry you. You'd have to hang onto the basket. We've done this before, you know the drill." Mikey handed it to her, and once she got it secure in her arms he hoisted her up bridal-style. "You good?" He nosed he hair and breathed her as he closed his eyes. "We're gunna go to turtle pond like always, but we're going to go /inside/ the castle this time. How's that sound?"

"I'm in." Cassidy grinned, her heart thudding in her chest. Turtle Pond was always the hideaway and they had talked about the castle before numerous times. About what could be inside. They never had dared to before, but this....this felt more like an adventure in the making.

"Then we'e off!" Mikey beamed and without further ado, he started across the cityscape and to Central Park. They were pretty silent, just enjoying the feeling of him holding her close and the warm night air rushing by. It didn't take too long, taking shortcuts and whatnot. Soon he had her upright on her feet again, but he kept his hand on the small of her back as they walked up to the castle. He used the device Donny gave him to disable the security and even take over the footage since this place was a tourist attraction. "Donny's been keeping an eye on this place for ages. This'll be a good chance to check it out for him, see if there's anything we can do with it."

Cassidy's breath caught as they walked into the castle. The inside needed a bit of work, but it was clear that it had been well scouted. Donny /would/ be able to do so much with the castle. She could see him making the entire castle his lab, with a few rooms designated for family to come visit. But she could also flip it, and see it as a place that maybe the turtles could move into instead. She could see a warm colorful home. She could see Maddie working on her garden without fear of leaving it behind. She could see Raph and Mikey playing video games in the living room...and it was spacious. But right now, right now it needed to be cleaned up a little. It needed a little love. "I like this." She said after a moment. "I can see your family living in this one day. It'd be so nice, you wouldn't feel so cramped...you'd be able to move. Breathe...Donny could do a whole lot with it. I bet if we find out some stuff about this place, he could figure out what he could do first. Pictures maybe of the interior? Would that help him? Maybe not...it doesn't show anything electrical..."

"That's why people come through here during the daytime. I bet there's something under the castle we could use, too. We did get the police department under wraps a while back, so maybe we could work something out with them. Some elaborate lie about how it's too 'dangerous' because it's too 'old' or something." Mikey beamed, "He's got the security now, so let's leave it up to him. We can tell him our thoughts on it later." He took her right to the biggest part of the room and started moving things around and out of the way, getting rid of ropes and other things to keep the general public from touching things they weren't supposed to. Then he took the blanket off the picnic basket and laid it out on the ground, "I brought candles, so we don't need electricity." He winked, "Your favorite scent instead of the cliche roses and things. We've done this enough, there's no need for it."

Cassidy grinned, as she sat down on the picnic blanket and started taking her shoes off and placed them at the edge. "No need to be cliche when the one you want is still by your side."

"We got all the sap in just how we look at each other, huh?" Mikey cooed at her and also took his sandals off. He also shucked his black short and belt with his nunchucks. Even on a date, he wore his gear since he didn't want to be caught off guard. He wasn't even really 'naked' under his pants. His plastron continued to his groin area, and his tail could swish around freely, but there was nothing for show. He stretched out bare legs with a content sigh, "That's nice. So, let's just talk a bit. No rush, which is the whole point. Everyone knows where we are, what we're up to. I'm not on any sort of time crunch, I don't gotta pretend I'm doin' patrol. We can /talk/, long and deep and shell, it could be hours from now when all the food's gone before we even get anywhere in /that/ regard. Which, honestly, Cassie? Is the most amazing feelin' ever."

"If we really crunch down the "eight years" I'd say that our time together would actually just only a few." Cassidy agreed, scooting up close to him and resting her head against his shoulder. "We were always tensed up, ready for you to go. Ready for me to bolt if I had no choice to. It /is/ nice. It's nice to actually...be with you. Just be."

"Yeah it is." Mikey hummed, wrapping an arm around her and used his foot to bring the basket closer, popping the lid, "It'd be no fun if we had to stop in the middle of anything 'cause our stomachs rumbled. Let's have something. Anything you want to talk about? Or...talk about /again/ really in our case?"

Cassidy reached into the basket and took out the food so that they could get to it easier. She thought about all the talks that they had. From the random to the mundane... "Hmmm." She handed him his portion and started unwrapping hers. "...That's a good question...we came up with a lot of assumptions and plans for things to go wrong....we never touched on the thought of things going right."

"I want...to touch on the topic of kids...if that's not too real or too much?" Mikey scratched his cheek a bit, and busied himself with making a nice big fat sandwich. "Donny's trying to think of and find ways to test to see if we're compatible, since it's something that could really happen now. I just...want to rehash thoughts and ideas and things?"

Cassidy blinked and she smiled softly. "I think the bigger question is, do we want them? I told you this before, I'd think you'd be an amazing father. You're fun, you're kind, you know what it's like to be the underdog, you know how to love and you have so much of it to give."

"I think Leo's going to have the hardest time with this, but my answer on that really depends on how you /really truly/ feel about them growing up in the sewers like my brothers and I did?" Mikey asked her seriously, brow ridges furrowed as he slapped more meat and cheese and tomatoes and other things on his sandwich, "You want to move down there with me, and I know it's been eight long ridiculous years, but I...I've told you this before, how I want more for you. We'd have to homeschool the tots and they can't make friends topside until they learn it's dangerous and their birthday parties would have to be on Halloween like ours are..."

Cassidy pointed at the castle. "Why can't we ask Donny about the castle? It's big. It's huge. It can fit your brothers comfortably along with a few others. If we have kids, this is the perfect place. And you're right, they'll be lonely. They'll be hurt they can't have friends. They'll wonder why the world will treat them that way. But we have Casey. We have April. We have Maddie. And we have Candy-Cane. You can't tell me that they wouldn't give hope that when they're older...they might find friends too. Friends that'll be there for them and not care."

"That's all I really wanted to hear." Mikey finished piling on his food and he leaned over to give her a forehead kiss, "I...uh...brought /condoms/ just in case you changed your mind, but...if we're still on our 'if it happens it happens' policy then...we don't need them." He took a big bite out of his food and chewed on it thoughtfully.

"You know I couldn't help but to notice you said "them" first." Cassidy frowned looking at Mikey. "You thinking about having more than one?"

"Well...turtles usually have more than one?" Mikey rubbed his neck, "I don't think you'd have the whole...egg thing going on since your body's different, and I'm hoping they end up being more human-looking, not as terrifying as...we are. I do expect more than one, yes, overall. Twins, triplets, I don't know. Don, uh...would probably have to learn up on c-sections. I wouldn't want to risk complications naturally if they have a shell, ya know?"

"That's true." Cassidy frowned, putting a finger against her mouth. "I should've remembered about them coming as a clutch. But I think we can safely rule out eggs....I mean...humans have eggs sure, but they're not able to harden...it's just not possible for a human to birth a shell...I think it'd be harder for a female turtle to mate with a human male if I'm honest. I think we should be lucky we're not switched."

"For sure. I suppose it's something we'll find out about as we go on, right?" Mikey took another bite and he had different images in his head about the possible outcomes. "I'd suggest asking for help via the NYPD, but we'll bring that back up if you actually become pregnant. That could be months or a year from now. I fully expect it to be very difficult."

Cassidy watched him for a little bit as she started eating as well. "So we're expecting twins, a difficult birth, and a difficult to catch." She summarized. "Worst case scenario looks like a C-Section. The best case seems to be a natural one. And the worst case for catching seems to be years, while the best could be months. If I'm completely honest here, I think that we're in the safe zone. I don't think I'll die during this. So...yay."

"No one'd forgive me, let alone myself, if anything bad happened to you." Mikey looked horrified at the thought.

"I don't think that's true." Cassidy turned to him seriously. "I'd forgive you. Maddie would, too. I told her about this before and she was a little concerned about it, but she told me she wouldn't mind babysitting. My job was just to recover if it was too hard." She thought about it. "Sometimes I forget that she's my age. Her intuition is just too on track sometimes."

"Yeah, I know what you mean. She knows before you say it sometimes." Mikey agreed, "I hope, in some alternate universe somewhere, that we're both human and happy and all together. I don't know what the universe would have to take away from us, what sacrifices we'd make, but as long as we're all together, we can support each other and make it through anything." He reached out and stroked her cheek with his thumb, "I love you so much, and I want to be with you always, no matter what."

"I love you." Cassidy leaned in and gently kissed his lips. It wasn't easy kissing a turtle, but they had learned how to get around it. She cupped his cheek, stroking her thumb against his skin. This was familiar, safe...if it happens, it happens.

Mikey set his half-eaten food aside and shoved the basket out of the way, pulling her close and his fingers stroked through her hair. This moment was a good one, and he brought her into his lap, deepening their kiss by asking for entrance with a swipe of his tongue across her bottom lip. Maybe they didn't fit perfectly together, but she felt wonderful in his arms anyway.

She knew that he had planned this from the very start. She opened her mouth and allowed him to come in. She pulled herself closer to him as she felt his hands wrap around her waist. She /knew/ that abandoning the bra was a good idea. It would be too hard to undo and honestly, her hands had better places to be. Like finding those places that made him moan.

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Thu Aug 10, 2017 1:15 am

Maddie lifted her watering can and she looked at her plant worriedly. She had found a bug in the soil so she had replanted the entire thing into a new pot while the old one was in the kitchen sink. She knew that bugs were common on plants, but this one looked like something that'd destroy it. She certainly didn't want the soil to be infected by eggs. While pesticide worked, so did just removing the soil and doing it all over again. "I think you'll be okay now." She assured the plant as she set her watering can down on the floor and touched the leaves. She was also worried since it was inside her /home/. She was going to have do a deep cleaning of the home again.

"Someone's coming. I'm going to hide." Sumiko sounded better than she had been before, though she had certainly gotten worse beforehand. Lots of rest and painkillers and other medicine. She still wasn't completely up to par, but with this week of people being out and away from Maddie's home had been a good stress relief. Right now, though, Sumi was looking at the window worriedly, and bolted from where she'd been at the kitchen stove making tea to the garage.

Maddie could feel it too. She sighed softly as she placed her plant back in it's spot and opened the window. "Do you drink coffee to tea?"

There was a pause before a reply, and then Donny appeared at the window, "Coffee, usually, since i stay up all night for days. You know that. I do drink tea, though, if you're not in the mood for it?"

"Black or ungodly amounts of sugar?" Maddie asked instead as she walked towards the kitchen. "I didn't know if you were a coffee fan though. I know from Raph that Leo's a tea fanatic and I know from personal experience Mikey doesn't care so long as it tastes good. But you change up down and sideways. It's hard to remember which one you prefer so best to always re-ask you in different lives."

Donny laughed and he closed the window before taking a glance around, "I could've sworn I told you that before, but I guess not. Well, I like it /mostly/ black. Just few teaspoons of sugar to help it go down more smoothly. I drink mocha more often during the wintertime, but besides that, definitely black. I don't mind my tea mostly straight, either, with honey instead of sugar which pleases Master Splinter and Leo."

Maddie snapped her fingers and she watched as the coffee pot floated to the sink and the sink turned on. "Makes sense. You probably did tell me, but...I just lost it to time." She winced.

"Raph was right, you /do/ have copious amounts of plants. I do see you were going to make tea; sorry for the change of plans. I just...wanted, needed to get out of the lair. Mikey /obviously/ got laid last night and he's been insufferable." Donny shook his head fondly.

Maddie shook her head from side to side. "I do this all the time with Andrea. It's fine. It's refreshing to me to be surrounded by plants. You know, it didn't used to be like that before. It didn't start till we were siblings. You used herbal remedies and a few westernized medicine standards. So we were pretty much required to have a huge garden and after that I just got hooked." She smirked. "But he got laid huh? You know they took a chance on fate right?"

"I can imagine. Raph's getting tense at the thought of needles for testing his blood. I'm not invasive enough to do any fertility tests but I can test mixing all our blood together to see if the mutagen would react badly or not. Also would be good to know if any of us lose a lot of blood if any of you can contribute." Don rattled off his nerdy science as he walked over to a plant and fiddled with a leaf, "It is pretty calming in here. I see you ditched some soil in the sink. Bad batch?"

"I found a bug in it, I didn't want to take chances. I know there's good ones and bad ones, and I recognized that it wasn't one that I wanted in that pot, so I changed the soil. I think the plant will do okay. It was looking pretty sickly which was why I looked so hard at it...and then took it out of the pot." Maddie was pleased that he thought it was calming, though she was a little surprised that Raph would be on pins and needles. "Huh...I wonder why him..."

"When it comes to anybody being laid up and getting poked and prodded by me, Raph is always trying his hardest to get out it. Mikey's pretty chill. Leo's tense but he's not about to fuck up anything I do by flinching and squirming or getting out of bed before he's meant to." Donny chuckled.

"Oh so it's that kind of antsy." Maddie rolled her eyes fondly. "Men of action don't like to be let down for nothing. Though I suppose since it's your hard work, they bare it the best they could. Can you imagine if they were doing this with a stranger? Oh my god, I'd feel bad for the doctor. Raph wouldn't listen...and Leo might just be stubborn. Mikey I think will listen. He knows better."

"Raph when he was younger would always fight the needles. Then he learned just how serious and nasty I can be when I'm taking no chances at safety and health. His first broken limb and he wouldn't look me in the eye for days. I guess I retained that part of my healer nature. Being a doctor in any life, or even modern doctors today, have to put up with a lot of shit and have to have some thick sk--" Don froze as he thought he heard something, but was too busy talking over it to really tell. "Am...I just hearing things? This place is protected, right?"

"It's protected." Maddie tensed up. She did tell people that she had someone hiding out with her right? She had to have...

Sure enough, Don made it a point to be quiet and listen, and heard very muffled coughing with his trained senses. Frowning deeply, he looked at Maddie, "I remember you had a refugee. I gave out devices to clear hardware for them. You didn't tell me they were sick."

"No I didn't." Maddie relaxed a little, but she wondered how this was going to go. It could go one of two ways. Sumiko could run....or Donnie would fight. Either one would have her running to defend.

He headed for the garage, but he paused to look at Maddie, "Am I allowed to help? Leo knocked down a lot of people that night, too. I mean, I'd understand if they'd hate to see someone who's been their enemy for so long."

Maddie closed her eyes and really thought about this before she opened them. "...Please help her."

Donny's eyes narrowed just a bit, but he nodded and went into the garage. However, when he first got in, he didn't see anyone. The amounts of plants followed, and he was caught by the colorful altars that completed the all four corners look. Distractions. Shaking his head, he took another look around. There was a cot plain as day, by the plants, and since it was a garage there was a truck sitting in the middle of the place. No doubt the guest was hiding. Goodie, he was going to have to play a little ring-around-the-rosy. There was a black mass that darted around a corner of the truck and he went around the other direction. /She/, obviously wasn't expecting that and the black mass seemed to back up. Walking closer, he held his hands up, showing he was unarmed. "I won't hurt you. Madeline just tole me I could help you."

"Talking to the air?" Maddie had followed him into the garage, but she didn't go any further than the door, leaning against it.

"No, she's..." Don motioned to the black mass, and then paused, "Wait...so I'm not supposed to see her?"

Sumiko really didn't know what to do. Japanese or English, he'd know who she was, but she couldn't keep this up for much longer. She was far from being back at full health. Turning, she headed back around the truck. She was scared. He knew who she was. An enemy, someone not to be trusted. That was who she was to him.

"Please let's not go in circles?" Don groaned, walking back around the truck, "Maddie, help me block her in? She's by the passenger door. If I gotta I /will/ knock her out with my shocks. I told you, I'm nasty when I'm serious."

"For the love of Kami don't do that." All the energy in the room came to a halt. Sumi hadn't meant to say it, but there it was. If Donny was human, he would be as white as a ghost right now. As it was, the olive tone to his skin lightened considerably as horror crossed his features. Busted, and it was her own damn fault, Sumi dropped her cloak.

Don stumbled to the side and he gripped the truck bed to stay upright, looking like the air had been punched right out of him as he continued to stare.

"I told you when you were upset that night you saved a life. You gave her an opening in which she could leave from." Maddie explained as she pushed herself off of the door. "I told everyone this before, it's not my policy to interfere in things that don't have anything to do with me. But I also said that I'm a safehouse. This is protected by those who want out of it. She dropped her sword."

"You...told me you couldn't. That there'd be awful consequences." Don felt rooted to the spot. He was so /torn/. The woman he'd wanted to meet for about a year, off and on since he found her photography blog. That he'd let down so many times with his denial to show his face or make anything official or special, not wanting to lead her on, setting his foot down for a friendzone. What did he do? He couldn't just...run up to her. "It didn't...nothing clicked with what you said, Maddie. I didn't realize what you meant."

Sumi's eyes fell to the floor, and she shifted uncomfortably, "It's...as you said. You're not supposed to see me. I used my cloak to escape. I knew...from...being Suzume that you could help me wipe yet keep my livelihood that was on my laptop and phone. I didn't /really/ deceive you with my name. I don't...Sumiko Yori. I hate my name. Suzume sounded...so much better to me, especially coming from you. I don't expect you to trust me, but here I am. I gave it all up."

Maddie watched Donny with a heavy heart. She wondered if anything she did...made this worse. She slowly made her way through the door and walked over to one of the alters. "Did you know that if you die, you get a new name?" She looked at Sumiko and Donny. "Did you know that with that new name you get a new life? I'd offer it sooner, but this seemed to be the better time."

"It...makes sense." Donny frowned deeply, "What are you offering, exactly?"

"I was prepared to die to begin with." Sumi answered in her own way, "You knew that when you gave me the paper."
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Thu Aug 10, 2017 5:28 pm

Maddie frowned as she stood by her altar, "Then. Sumiko Yori is dead." She looked at her straight. "And Suzume is you."

"Sumiko Yumi died by suicide." Maddie explained firmly. "And Suzume Yumi lives somewhere. Here if you want. With Donny if that's what you want. Wherever you want to go. It's your oyster. Don't worry about being discovered or found. Even if it happens, dopplegangers do exist. You just have to pretend not to know them."

"A new life, a new name." It was starting to come together. "Suzume Yumi...that rolls off the tongue nice. I have my paperwork and green card and everything in my messenger bag. I could really change my name. Disappear."

"Wait...Maddie, I may be jumping the gun here, but...wouldn't that mean that you would join the fight for real? Suicide...that's not something you would take lightly." Don's quick-thinking mind rushed to the conclusion.

Maddie nodded, "It means that I have no choice but to interfere. Especially if I give the news straight on to Karai. Which is my plan the next time we patrol and we come across her."

Sumiko coughed and didn't miss how Don finally came closer, holding her steady as her chest rattled with each one. She looked back at Maddie, "Do I have to do...anything? Some confession of my life before, or just...take my new name and move on?"

"If you want to." Maddie shrugged. "I could use it to slap Karai across the face."

"I can go, give you privacy while you do that. I do want to come back as soon as you're finished, though." Don told them both, "If you decide to stay, I'll bring medicine from home. If you...if you want to come back to the lair with me, I know my brothers will be wary at first, but I'm going to fight for you. You're going /this far/ to change your life around. Even they will have to acknowledge and honor that."

"Ghosts will still haunt me. Melancholy, nightmares. Talking about it won't make it disappear. A new name won't erase memories. Are you going to stand with me through that?" Sumi asked softly.

"Yes. Yes, and...we'll just pick up right where we left off, with you getting on the plane from Japan to come to New York. Anything, everything that happened this last month will be like it didn't happen. When I come back, if you want, I'll greet you as if I met you at the airport." Don straightened with his determination, "As Suzume Yumi, the photographer of stupid cherry blossoms."

The first smile cracked Sumi's face and she ducked her head as her cheeks warmed and turned pink. "Yeah...alright. I'll hold you to that, Don."

Don gave her a head bow and looked at Maddie before coming over and giving her a hug, "Thank you for doing this."

Maddie hugged him back, "I think you should hold your gratitude for now. But I'll take it." She let him go and smiled warmly. "I'm glad to be of help."

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Thu Aug 10, 2017 7:20 pm

"What ya thinkin', Leo?" Raph asked as he paced around, waiting for Donny to bring that guest down. "The same person Mads has been hidin' out in her home? A Foot member? Or, ex-Foot, but ya get what I mean. Should we really let them down here?"

Leo folded his arms together. He trusted Donny's judgement, but at the same time he couldn't help but to think that this was an elaborate trap. Sure, Maddie had the best intuition that there was. She knew how people were going to react to situations and people. He shifted his weight. Maddie took someone in that was the Foot. Why was this different compared to all of the others she probably saved? Maddie didn't specify anything when he texted her about what she was thinking. All he got was a shrugging emoji. "I'm not sure what to think about this." He said after a moment. "Stay on guard, and don't let anything slip."

"You're dating a /Foot Clan/ member?!" Raph scowled, "Since when?!"

"No. I am dating a /Photographer/." Donny straightened and held his ground, Mikey getting out of the way. He let go of Suzume and walked closer to Raph and Leo, knowing Mikey would stay with her, "Sumiko Yori is dead. Death by suicide in Madeline's territory after confessing the horrors of her life to the only person who would listen. Suzume moved here from Japan, but I've known her for a year. We only just agreed to be together, because before I was afraid. After Mikey revealed he has been with Cassidy for /eight years/ I thought maybe, just maybe, I could be with Suzume. I met her at the airport."

Raph wasn't entirely sure what he was hearing. It partially sounded like an alibi, but...it really did sound like the real story at the same time. He looked at Leo, "Do you get /any/ of this?"

"In some religions, in order to become one of them, you throw aside your old life and you have to take up a new one. Usually that means to give up your name and everything pertaining to that name." He looked at Raph. "In other words, it's both an alibi and a story."

"Do you really believe it?" Raph frowned deeply at Leo, and looked back at Don, then over his shoulder at... "So who are you /really/?"

"My name is Suzume, and I gave up everything to to be where I am now. My camera, some clothes, and the paperwork in my bags are all I have." She also met him head-on. "It was the hardest decision I've ever made, but it was indeed either this or stabbing myself in the stomach."

Leo winced a bit at the description, but he could see the truth of it. He wondered what Maddie's end game was...but he supposed that she saw the desperation too. That was probably why she was going to the extreme, but he knew as well that he was thinking naively. "What's Maddie going to do with that information?"

"She told us that she was going to use it against Karai." Suzume took the time to walk to the couch and set her things down with a heavy sigh and she coughed a bit. but it was a weak one. Nothing like yesterday after taking Donatello's medication. "I don't know anything besides that."

"She told me she wouldn't join the fight without a reason. This must be the reason she's using. Karai respected the territory call, but now whatever...treaty they made is void." Raph wasn't sure how he felt about this, "I'll have to bring that up when I talk to her tomorrow."

"Man, Leo, laggin' behind. You should ask Andrea out now." Mikey teased their leader since Raph was referring to the date he had planned for the Fourth of July.

"Maybe." Leo said absently. He was going to have to warn Andrea anyway that Maddie was going to start up a dangerous game. "Well...welcome to the lair, Suzume. I'm sorry that this wasn't the happiest and warmest you've gotten."

"No, it's alright. I was expecting worse. This was a surprise. I would have been concerned if it was a warm welcome from all of you, not just Michelangelo." Suzume bowed to Leo, "<Thank you. Please take care of me.>"

"This is hella weird, but...uh...welcome." Raph echoed Leo and bowed back just to be polite as Splinter taught them.

"Call me Mike, if you want to be formal." Mikey beamed at her.

"Mike." Suzume corrected with a gentle look as she stood straight, "Don told me that I would stay in his room, since he is in his lab all the time."

Leo frowned deeply. He couldn't exactly...deny her to stay in that room since they let Cassidy. But the difference was, was that Cassidy hadn't a fighting chance. While Suzume did. "Would make sense, it's rarely used." Leo said slowly. "It's a shame, but we also have a girl staying down here too. I'd introduce you to her so you didn't feel like you were the only one here. Is Cassidy going to be coming down you think?" He turned to Mikey for that, an idea going through his head if she was.

"I can certainly give her a call and arrange that." Mikey told Leo readily, "Do you want me to?"

"Would you feel comfortable with that?" Leo asked Suzume, tilting his head at her.

"I don't mind. Another girl to talk to would be nice, and she would be able to get me situated if she's here a lot." Suzume nodded, "Madeline has been my only friend so far, outside of knowing Don. It would...be good, to make another."

Leo looked over at Mikey. "Might as well."

~*~
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Thu Aug 10, 2017 9:55 pm

Suzume was taking the liberty to put all her pictures and information on Donatello's laptop. He had an external hard-dive he used to transfer from one to another if he wanted to be in his room, but he had had basically handed his laptop to her and said to do whatever. That was when she heard the door and looked up, seeing a brunette with green eyes peek in, "Hello. You must be Cassidy?"

"Hey!" Cassidy beamed as she opened the door a little wider for herself to come in. She looked at Suzume up and down and she whistled. "You must've really nudged a bolt with Maddie. For her to do what she's doing. It's alright. I support you a hundred and ten percent. Maddie's never steered me wrong before, and I don't think she ever plans to."

"Thank you for coming down. It is good to meet you. Mike's girlfriend? He was...really enthusiastic when Don said I was his." Suzu put the laptop aside while it downloaded and stood up, bowing and then holding her hand out, "Raphael was the most on edge, and Leonardo seemed...understanding but wary."

"Understandable. Maddie's his girlfriend. For her to do what she's doing is really dangerous." Cassidy agreed as she walked over, shook her hand, and sat down on the bed. "You have a lot of stuff here. That's so cool. I'm glad you managed to salvage what you could. Mikey and I were kinda considering being called something other than girlfriend and boyfriend since we've been together for eight years, but...we haven't made the leap yet."

"Fiances, maybe?" Suzume offered with a chuckle, "Don let me have what was his. Maybe another time I'll show you some of my pictures. Don found me through my blog." She smiled a little bit more, "What do you think about Madeline joining the fight, then?"

"Well. It means that it's about to be an end game." Cassidy said as she crossed her legs. "Maddie would've let this continue on forever, but well...she was going to enter it sooner or later. My /concern/ is how badly Karai's going to react to her challenge."

"Why is that? What an you tell me?" Suzu sat back down, "Shredder doesn't care much about Maddie, he hates the brothers. Yet, Karai is flipped. She never wants to hurt them, it's just her duty to do so, but she ranted all the way back to the building as we fled when Maddie crashed the party."

Cassidy winced, "Oh boy. Way to leave a mark. I wonder, are you going to fight with us or are you going to just do photographs?" She asked carefully. "Because depending on what I tell you, depends on that. It's not really a safety thing. It's more of a, want to keep your life new kind of thing."

"I want to be like Maddie." Suzu answered carefully, "Help people. That may require me fighting. I was not only trained in the blade, but I also took archery during school in Japan. I want to keep fighting, but with my new name I'll take up a new weapon. I'll fight from a distance. I will do my best not to be seen. Find a new outfit to wear. Maybe wear green and purple, to signify who I fight for now"

"You and Maddie I swear." Cassidy stared at her for a bit before she thought about it. "Maddie's a witch. With her magic, she's able to do a lot of damage. But she also is an assassin. Killian re-taught her the basics and she's back in the game. She doesn't try to kill people, but her fighting motto is simple. It's you or them, always choose you. I don't know what went down with the Foot and Maddie. I don't know what went down with the Foot and Killian for that matter. All I know is that those two got on the Foot's bad side...and Maddie proved herself to be formidable. Shredder wanted her captured, and she avoided it."

Suzume shrugged, "That was before I came here. I don't know either. I just hope Maddie can make the punch she's looking for. I'm magical, too. They were hoping to use me against her, but my magic is different. I can't do the same kind of spells she can. My Shadows can be suppressed with certain sigils. If they caught me, not only would I be terribly injured but they'd use that to keep me in a cell. I don't know what they'd do to her. Brainwash her, blackmail her, kill her. It's all up in the air."

"I don't know if it's possible, but it could be if they want her bad enough." Suzume nodded, "I hope that means everyone will take some extra caution." Shaking her head she watched Cassie for a moment, "Did you have anything in mind to do? Or were you just wanting to get to know me?"

"I was hoping to get to know you. I mean, if you're dating Donny you could be a potential sister-in-law and since Maddie's going all out, I thought hey, better make sure she knows she has me in her corner." Cassidy beamed.

"That's real sweet of you." Suzume patted her knee, "I'm a rather boring person, in all honesty. I'd skype with Don and tell him about my days as they went. I could answer the mundane, but anything beyond that isn't all that mind-blowing. I'm not a nerd, I'm not reckless in fights. I actually don't /like/ fighting. I don't go out and do girly things like shopping. I'm pretty reclusive besides going out to take pictures."

"Holy fuck you /are/ like Maddie." Cassidy stared at her. "You two...we're getting you out of the house more."

"I have a hobbie that gets me out of the house. Madeline has /plants/." Suzu giggled lightly.

Cassidy just sighed, "Yeah but at least Maddie knows what a girl's day looks like. You don't. So, I think you're pretty much even on whose deprived here."

"Well. I /do/ need more than a week's worth of clothes. Madeline washed all of what I had before I came down here so I'm good for a little while. That could be an idea for...um...Sunday? Since tomorrow she has that date." Suzu offered her.

"Girls day!" Cassidy fist pumped the air before she jumped off the bed. "It's a date then. I should probably let you get to resting. But just to let you know, if you need anything I'm usually in Mikey's room or kicking ass at videogames or trying to tell Maddie to come /sleep/ down here." She rolled her eyes. "Since that's an issue."

"She doesn't come visit the turtles?" Suzu furrowed her brows.

"Not often." Cassidy said as she paused at the door and turned back around. "It's not that she doesn't feel welcomed, or that she doesn't have a reason. That's never bothered her. I suppose it's just....she has a comfort zone, and being /too/ comfortable is a little weird."

"Hmm. That's...interesting. I suppose she isn't you. They made it sound like you practically live here." Suzu hummed, "Well...what are you planning on doing? I might...come watch you play video games, if that's...okay? My things are going to take a while to download. I....had a /lot/ of stuff."

"Come on then!" Cassidy grinned as she gestured for her to follow. "You should definitely come down to watch us kick ass and take names. Hell, if you decide to be on my team, we'll take down the boys!"

"If you think we can." Suzume agreed and got up, following her. It would be odd, finding out how she fit in here, but if she had someone to help her, maybe it wouldn't be so bad.

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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Fri Aug 11, 2017 12:26 am

Raphael hopped in place and shook his arms and wrists as he gave himself a pep-talk, loosening up his muscles and getting ready for a ride. Maddie was going to meet him there in the garage, and they were going to head straight out of town via the road map he'd been studying from Casey from Kyle that would be cleared just for him to plow right through. It was a warm night, and he wondered if Mads would be in her usual jacket or wear something light. What /would/ her 'date night' attire look like? Would she go for plaid like usual? All black just to tease? Would she be festive since it's a holiday? Ideas raced through his head and he double-checked the mounted case where he'd put a blanket plus some food and drinks, using it like a makeshift ice box without the ice since Donny was awesome with his gadgets. The helmets were hanging off the handlebars to make room. He had sent her a text ahead of time just to see what she liked for alcohol and soda.

It didn't take long before Maddie walked into the garage. Her outfit was different this time around. She wore high heeled boots that went up to her knees. She had skinny jeans that were dark and not holey. She also wore a top that only covered her breasts and just a bit of her midriff with long dark sleeves, the tops of the shoulders cut. Her hair was tied back in a a curly low ponytail. She shifted when he looked at her. "Andrea said sexy, Cassidy said casual, and Suzu said whatever." She explained. "So I did both."

"That's...wow." Raph let out a breathy chuckle, "Damn ya know how to work it. That's...I like the temporary perm in yer hair. Dark jeans look better on ya than black. I'm glad ya didn't wear booty shorts or anythin' like that or you'd be hella uncomfortable with the long ride outa here." He put the kickstand up and rolled the bike over to her, offering her the helmet she'd be wearing. "Donny modifies everythin' 'n' that's no different. We can actually talk to each other instead of shouting our lungs out while they're on."

"Oh." Maddie took the helmet and she placed it on her head. "The booty shorts belong to Cassidy. I wouldn't try to wear them. I usually go with basketball shorts."

"I can see that. Andrea seems more the type to wear skirts." Raph nodded and he put his on once they were out the garage door, swinging his leg over the side. He turned the key and revved it up, then looked over his shoulder. "Get on. Might be best ta hang onto my belt rather than my shell."

"Sounds good to me," Maddie had thought that the belt would be the better place. She tried thinking about the shell but while he was bigger and and his shell rounder, it was also a little embarrassing to think that she coudl be pressed up so close against him. She didn't really know what was different since they had pressed up close before. But it was probably because of the long period of time. She decided to stop over thinking it and slipped onto the bike, taking a hold of his belt. "Is this going to be a surprise?"

"Donny helped me figure out the specifics and I know where I'm goin'. Ya already know it's ta watch fireworks, but the /surprise/ will be just how cool the view will be." Raph grinned behind his helmet and revved the bike up, "Hang on tight. Kyle gave me quite the maze to navigate. Once we reach the outskirts ya could relax and hang onto my shell. I just don't want ya slippin' as I turn."

Maddie laughed a little. She could imagine how bad that could go. He took off and she let out a surprise yip that made him laugh and she grinned. The city past her by in a quick moment, and Kyle really did leave them a maze. She never thought she'd ever see a track with so many different turns that happened in seconds. It made her both admire Kyle's ability to map out a good method of travel....and to strangle him honestly.

Once Raph reached a point where he didn't have to concentrate so much, he started up a conversation. "Cassie helped Suzume settle in. I'm still not sure how I feel about someone like her in our lair. Leo's trying, and Splinter-sensei had a long chat with her, but I still feel pretty tense. I nearly lost my brothers. They tried to drain of them of their blood to get the mutagen. You could probably see it, but Shredder literally /stomped/ me into the ground and cracked my shell when I went to rescue them. Good news, though, we're all mostly bullet proof. The plasron asks like kevlar. Still hurts like a bitch but hey, it doesn't go through."

Maddie took a good look at his shell and she did see the crack. Taking one of her hands off his belt, she traced the line with her fingers before hurrying to put it back on his belt so she didn't slip off or worse. She could understand why he was tensed up. Nearly losing family did that to a person, and nearly being killed by them again and again was dreadful. To have one that could have the power to do that in their home...it wasn't an easy decision. "Cassidy's always been good at putting people at ease. I'm not surprised she made a fast friend in Suzume. It's good that she has someone to lean on why she's there."

"Yeah. I just...wanted to put it out there, so you don't like, feel upset with me or anythin' for not tryin' as had as I probably should. It'll take a while." Raph sighed softly, "You did good, rescuing her. Don's happy. I have been watching how they interact. Old friends, like Cassie and Mikey. It softens me up a little more each time."

"Why would I feel upset with you? You're dealing with someone who's a threat. I'm not asking you to accept her so fast. I knew you guys were going to be cautious." Maddie said gently, moving so that she could lean against his shell a little bit. "I knew it was going to take time. But she's safer down there right now than up here. At least till I deal with Karai."

"How exactly are you planning on doing that?" Raph furrowed his bows, "Are you like...going to make them so angry they act recklessly?"

"I don't think I'll make them act reckless. But I'll certainly make them angry." Maddie said after a moment. "I don't know if my plan's best to say when you're driving, Raph. I trust that you're safe, but...uh...I might make you flip a lid."

"So /you're/ going to be reckless?" Raph chanced a guess.

Maddie bit the inner corner of her lip. "...Yes."

Raph took a big breath in through his nose and let it out slow through his mouth, like Donny taught him. "Alright. Then, fine. We'll wait until we get where we're goin'." Because she was right and he hated it. It took a while longer but he finally broke from the city and he started making his way to the lookout Donny had helped him find. "You can relax now."

Maddie didn't immediately let go of his belt to hold onto him, but she did it slowly so that she could grab onto him if she felt the need. It was weird, being away from the city and into the suburbs. There was hardly anyone around, everyone was waiting for the fireworks to start where they could actually be close to them. Here though, it was different. Quieter. She wished she had picked a home like that, but she knew she belonged to the city...at least for now. But damn, what a good home for her plants. For them to hide away in.

"Some other time, I'll take you up to Casey's cottage." Raph told her, "It's a good place to hide away. We've decorated it up plenty for Halloween for birthday parties, used it like a haunted house people could come to. Now I think about it, I might've seen Cassie there a time or two when we did that. Pretending to be a visitor, the little sneaky shit. Want to help us decorate it this year?"

Maddie burst into laughter. She could see Cassidy doing that and she wasn't at all surprised. "I would love to." She said lightly as she picked her head up a bit. "It'd be fun to do. It'd be fun to see where the cottage is. He talks about it sometimes. Makes me a little envious. I'd love to be out in the country."

"Casey's basically given us brothers the cottage if we ever need a place to just get away and relax. We're too worried about going out there during the winter, and summer's too busy with crime, so Halloween is the only real time that's possible." Raph explained, "That's thinkin' really far ahead, but...it's a thought, yeah?" Together out there, just relaxing and taking it day by day.

Maddie shrugged. "You're an all or nothing kind of man. If I don't think this far ahead, then I'm not really giving you my all." She smiled a little though. "I don't blame you for it. But it's good to have a little vacation spot. Cassidy told me that the Castle's another thing you might try to get."

"Donny's been eyeballing it for years. That's a prime spot for getting almost anywhere in New York. The sewers help us get around fast, but it /would/ be nice to not /smell/ like the sewer, ya know?" Raph leaned into a rounded road, and not too long after that, they pulled onto a gravel road and he stopped, "We go up the hill from here."

"Up the hill as in we're walking it, or up the hill "you better hold on to me as tight as you fucking can"?" Maddie asked.

"Geez, we're walkin'. I'm not about to drive my bike up there. Here." Raph took a flashlight from one of the pouches on his belt and handed it back to her, "Now get off so I can."

"I'm sticking my tongue out at you." Maddie said as she got off of the bike and took off her helmet. She had a feeling her hair looked like someone ran a big hand over it and ruffled it. She didn't mind it though, it meant that she had fun. It meant that she /actually/ went out somewhere. She placed the helmet on the bike and watched him get off. She flicked on the flashlight and put it under her chin. "Don't ask." She put the flashlight down. "Need me to carry anything or am I the light source?"

"You're the light source." Raph agreed as he put the kick-stand down and also put his helmet on the bike. He went to the box on the back and popped it open, then used the blanket to wrap it all together and after he closed it, he motioned for her to go ahead. They made it up the hill, and he got everything off the blanket on the grass before spreading it out. Taking the flashlight from her, he jammed it into the dirt, the light bouncing off the tree behind them, and he grabbed one of the bottles of alcohol and one of the bags of food. "What do ya think of the view? Ya can see the river from here, too."

"Good. Now, while we wait, why don't you tell me your plan?" Raph used his sai to pop the lid on his drink, then reached over and did the same for her.
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Fri Aug 11, 2017 12:31 am

"I'll only say the name once, and then after that I'm never saying the name again." Maddie said with a deep frown. "I promised her death and that's exactly what I intend to carry out. Sumiko Yori I met on the street. She looked troubled, her spirit was at a breaking point, I saw nothing but death no matter which way she took so I offered her a third option. I told her to use my home as a safeguard. I told her that staying in that environment was killing her. She did so after Donny knocked her into the river and she got to my home as I was needed with Donny. She got a little sick, but that was my fault for not...helping her quickly enough."

She sighed. "Donny came by to the safe house and was able to see through Sumiko's shadow trick. To be honest, I shouldn't have been surprised. He's always been able to see through my glamour, and any of my tricks that I had up my sleeve. They were a little concerned about how the Foot could track them down. So I told Suzume that if she dies...and disappears...I could make something out of it. So, basically, Sumiko Yori died on my territory in suicide. Suzume Yumi just arrived to America to visit Donny from Japan."
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PostSubject: Re: TMNT-Vamp/Lynx Hiding In Shadows    Fri Aug 11, 2017 12:55 pm

"That's roughly what Donny told the group when I asked." Raph frowned and nodded, "So she's not an enemy. She never wanted this." He took a sip of his drink, watching the city from where they were. "I didn't want to put any blame on her. I'll try not to be so standoffish; she did give up everything. So what does this mean for you?"
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