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Another Life

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It wasn’t anything Mikey hadn’t heard countless times before, the disgust and irritation in all his brothers voices as they decided that splitting up into teams was the best option, Mikey had guessed before Leo had even said anything that he wasn’t going to be picked.

And sure enough, after a quick argument, and a final order from Leo, Mikey was left with Donnie.

“If you’re going to be in here with me, sit over there, and. Don’t. Touch. Anything,” Donnie said, so Mikey backed up to the corner, and sat down, his eyes fixed on Donnie’s shell as the purple banded turtle turned back around and started typing.

Mikey knew his brothers loved him, and that’s why he put up with the verbal abuse, and being overlooked time and time again, though it never hurt any less.

“I’m the leader,” Donnie said in a mocking voice as he typed on the keyboard. “Stupid Leo, how am I supposed to consintrate on hacking a complex system when I have to babysit all the time?”

Mikey wanted to protest that he didn’t need a babysitter, but didn’t bother, knowing his protests would either be ignored, or worse, make Donnie even more irritated at having him around. So he remained silent as his brother worked.

“Got it!” Donnie’s excitement drew Mikey’s attention to the computer screen where his brother had pulled up a map. “It looks like the portal device is being moved to a new secure location, it’s supposed to be loaded on a truck to be moved...”

“When’s it leaving?” Mikey asked, coming to stand next to Donnie, staring at the screen as he tried to make heads or tails of all the information.

“Now!” Donnie exclaimed and didn’t stop typing. “Raph and Leo went to the top floor, there’s no way they can-”

“Leave it to me bro, I got it,” Mikey said cheerily, running towards the door, ignoring Donnie’s calls for him to come back, his brothers could yell at him later, after he stopped the truck with the portal device on it, and after he proved he wasn’t as useless as they thought he was.

Mikey burst through the exit door, leaned over the railing to the stairs to see how far down the basement was, before he jumped the railing, grabbing onto the one just below him, he jumped back and forth all the way down until his feet landed on the concrete of the bottom floor.

He looked around once he landed, making sure no one was around, and that he hadn’t been seen, satisfied that he was alone, he reached for the door that should lead out to where the loading trucks were, it was at that moment his phone started ringing.

Grabbing it quickly he answered it.

“Mikey! Where are you?” It was Leo.

Mikey winced at how irritated his leader sounded. “Keep it down bro,” Mikey hissed into the phone, opening the door slightly and looking out into the gurage, his eyes focusing on the only truck three bay doors down. “I can see the portal thingy,” Mikey said.

“Get back up here, Mikey,” Leo ordered.

“No way, dude, I can do this!” Mikey insisted.

“Not on your own,” Leo snapped.

Mikey gripped his phone tighter, his hand on the door shaking slightly as he once again pushed his emotions down. “They’re going to get away with the portal thing,” Mikey insisted, watching as the back of the truck was closed up, and the two men were making their way to the cab at the front.

Mikey heard Leo sigh in frustration. “Raph and I will handle that, you just get back to Donnie, he’ll take you back to the lair and-”

“No!” Mikey snapped. “I’m not some baby that needs looking after! I’m a ninja just like you, and Donnie and Raph, I can DO this, Leo!” Mikey insisted, and didn’t wait for his brother, his leader, to answer before hanging up the phone, putting it back in his belt he opened the door further and darted into the gurage, heading towards the truck as the engine started he grabbed the handle to the door and opened it before climbing inside.

He looked at the machine, it had been a long time since he’d seen it up close, in fact the last time he’d seen it, the Kraang were still trying to take over New York and mutate everyone and everything, and now, most of the Kraang tech that had been left behind, was being rounded up by the military, taken to secure locations.

Donnie had been very adamant that this particular bit not get locked up in storage, and even Mikey could understand why, giving the military the power to use portals wasn’t exactly anyone's idea of a fun time, though Mikey suspected that Donnie also wanted to use it to explore other worlds himself. Not that Mikey blamed him.

“Okay, I got to the portal thing, now what?” he looked around, hoping the solution would present itself when he felt the whole truck jerk as it started moving, pulling away from the bay door, and the building his brothers were in.

“Okay, this is okay, everything’s fine,” Mikey said. “I just have to push this out of the truck.” Mikey looked at the size of the portal device and shook his head. “Okay, maybe Raph could push it out of the truck, think, Mikey, think, you got this,” he tried to encourage himself, even as he started to really realize that maybe he didn’t have this, and that maybe he’d just gotten himself into a situation he couldn’t easily get out of.

Shaking his head, Mikey huffed. “No, I’m just as good as any of those jerks,” he told himself, walking around the portal device, looking it over, before he spotted some straps that were holding it in place, kneeling down Mikey looked under it and grinned widely when he realized that the whole thing had been propped up on wheels.

“Oh yeah!” He said triumphantly, pulling at the straps, loosening them one by one until the whole thing was rolling around freely in the back with him, he then waited, sitting on the teleporter, the truck came to a stop and Mikey took his chance, bracing himself between the edge of the teleporter, and the back wall of the truck, he pushed, feeling it roll towards the doors as the truck started moving again.

Mikey braced himself, holding on as the teleporter hit the doors to the truck, sending them flying open. Mikey nearly cheered at his success, though he realized his success wasn’t as wonderful as he originally thought. He’d been in the back of the truck longer than he thought, and it appeared that they were now on some highway heading out of the city.

“Not good, not good,” Mikey said, pushing on the teleporter, trying to get it the rest of the way out of the truck, this was helped along when the truck hit a speedbump, Mikey yelped, holding onto the teleporter tightly as both the it and Mikey were sent flying from the back of the truck, landing roughly on the ground Mikey cried out as the piece of the teleporter he was gripping onto broke off.

His cry of surprise quickly turned into one of pain as he too hit the pavement and rolled, feeling shards of metal and glass that littered the road from the teleporter cut into him, before finally coming to a stop. Mikey lay there for a long moment, breathing heavily as he had had the wind knocked out of him and he was seeing stars.

----------x

Mikey jerked awake with a gasp, eyes wide as he sat up, leaning over and gripping the bed sheets that covered his lower half, his eyes focusing on the scars that covered his hands and arms. They were less noticeable than they had been months ago, and Mikey had to remind himself again that they were still healing, and though he might always have scars, as time went on they would become less obvious, or so he’d been told.

Taking a deep shuddering breath, Mikey moved the blankets off his lap, twisting to put his feet on the floor. The feeling of smooth marble was still so forgin to him, as was the silk sheets, the scented pillows, and the overall feel of the palace he now lived in.

He often wondered what his brothers would think of him now, knowing he was living a lifestyle none of them had ever dared dream about before. Shaking his head, Mikey sighed and stood, grabbed the robe that hung on the end of the bed he pulled it on, pulling it tightly closed in the front before making his way across the room, his feet shuffling silently on the smooth floor, he pulled the door open.

It was still the early hours of the morning, so most of the occupants of the palace were likely still asleep, however Mikey knew there was at least one person who would be awake at this hour, closing his bedroom door behind him, Mikey hurried through the vast halls, down a small flight of stairs until he reached a wooden door, he knocked once, before pushing it open.

“Donnie?” he whispered, not wanting to wake the other turtle if he was getting a rare moment of sleep.

“I’m here,” the voice called, and Mikey smiled, pushing the door open further, he slipped inside. “I was beginning to wonder if I would see you tonight,” the voice said from behind a stack of books that littered his desk. “Is it the dreams again?”

“Am I that obvious?” Mikey asked, coming over to peer over the stack of books at the turtle that was identical to his brother in name alone, there were familiar things about him that were similar to Mikey’s brother, like his love for knowledge, and his habit of locking himself in his study for hours, sometimes days at a time.

However, he was far more gentle than Donnie, and more patient than any of Mikey’s brothers had been, Mikey never felt brushed aside by him, and though he was sure there were times he was being a bother, Donatello never complained, and simply smiled at Mikey fondly.

“You know, if you wish to sleep through the night, I believe I have found something that might help,” Donatello said, standing up, and Mikey stepped back so he didn’t have to crane his neck quite so much to stare up at him.

That was the other massive difference between this worlds Donnie, and his brother, though it seemed to be a trait that all this worlds occupants shared, was their overall large sizes, every occupant in this world just seemed to be some kind of giant, and Mikey was sure if they ever came to his world, they likely wouldn’t fit through most doorways without having to duck down.

“No, it’s okay,’ Mikey assured him. “I don’t need much sleep, and honestly I’m still not used to sleeping at night anyway,” Mikey insisted.

Donatello looked at him, frowning. “If you are sure,” he said. “But know that if you ever need something to help you sleep, you can come to me, or even Leonardo, I’m sure he would enjoy your company,”

“Yeah, I’m sure he would,” Mikey said flatly and Donatello chuckled.

“I take it you still do not approve of the king to be?” Donatello questioned.

“I don’t know!” Mikey exclaimed. “I don’t hate him, but I also don’t know him either! And he just expects me to be… to be…” Mikey blushed and looked away.

“His bride?” Donatello offered helpfully.

“I’m not his bride! I’m not even a girl!” Mikey pouted.

Donatello smiled fondly at him. “Is that all that’s bothering you about the proposal? Is that you are not a female?”

Mikey shrugged. “I mean, that’s part of it I suppose,” the smaller turtle admitted.

Donatello nodded his head, and smiled fondly at Mikey. “You’ve been here a month already, I would have hoped you’d realize by now that your gender is of little concern to Leonardo,”

“I just don’t get it, he’s supposed to be king soon, right? Isn’t he supposed to like… want some nice lady turtle that he can have kids with or something? I can’t exactly give him that,” Mikey said.

Donatello blinked. “What would kids have to do with anything?” he questioned.

“Uh… ya know, little princes, or princesses to carry on after he’s gone, become the next ruler or whatever,” Mikey said, frowning when Donatello simply chuckled at him. “What? Did I say something stupid again?”

“No, not at all,’ Donatello said. “I am simply amused by how differently things work in your world, do you have many kings that pass on the position of king to their offspring?” Donatello asked.

“No… not really, I mean, I know some places have kings, and queens, but I think most rulers are voted into office or something like that, at least the part of the world I’m from that’s how it works,” Mikey said.

Donatello nodded, looking thoughtful. “I see, and they continue ruling until the end of their days?” Donatello asked and Mikey shook his head.

“People vote a lot, I think my brother told me once it was every four, maybe five years? I don’t remember, I was only half listening,” Mikey admitted with a sheepish grin.

“So your world isn’t very different from ours in that regard, though, our king isn’t voted in, they are chosen, each ruler will have a birthmark, or special trait of some kind that sets them apart from all others, when that person comes of age, the former ruler will step aside so the new king can take his place,” Donatello explained and Mikey listened intently, nodding his head in understanding as he was finding it easy to follow what this Donnie was telling him more than he ever could with his brother.

“So… where do I come into all this being Leo’s bride?” Mikey asked.

“Has he not answered that one for you yet?” Donatello asked, looking a little surprised by that information.

“Well… about that, I’ve sorta been avoiding him when I can,” Mikey admitted with a blush. “And when I am around him, I can’t really think of important questions like this to ask,”

Donatello smirked almost knowingly, though thankfully didn’t ask him why Mikey couldn’t think of questions when he was around the future king. “Well, if you’d told me sooner, I could have taken extra time to answer your questions, so, we’ll start with this one, why you were chosen to be Leonardo’s bride,” Donatello gestured towards a nearby seat, and Mikey hesitated for only a moment before sitting down, turning his full attention towards Donatello.

“Leonardo can not become king, without a bride,” Donatello said. “Each king to be has one requirement before taking the throne, this differs with each king, our current one, being from one of the richest noble families in our country, was required to give up his riches and lifestyle for five years before the designated time of his coronation,”

“Wow…” Mikey said. “And, he did it?”

Donatello nodded. “Of course, if he had not, he would not be our king,” he explained.

“So… I guess, that would mean that I’m what Leo needs to be king?” Mikey asked.

“You are very clever, and a fast learner,” Donatello praised, causing Mikey to blush brightly and look away.

“I’m really not…” he objected, catching a glimpse of Donatello’s expression out of the corner of his eye, though Mikey couldn’t have been sure, the mage looked almost a little sad, and concerned before the look was gone, replaced with his usual smile.

“You are correct,” Donatello said. “Leonardo’s requirement was that he must find himself a bride before his coronation can be planned,”

“Which brings me back around to why doesn’t he just find some nice lady that’s from here?” Mikey asked.

Donatello sighed. “There are lots of reasons, many of which are not my place to discuss, but Leonardo, he is already older than any king to be should be, our current king is getting old, Leonardo has tried, but he can not simply marry someone and be done with it, so…” Donatello trailed off, his eyes darting towards the doorway behind Mikey.

Mikey felt a chill run down his spine, and he didn’t dare turn around when he heard that silky voice speak.

“So I prayed, and even hired a mage to use a summoning spell, I asked for only one thing, a wonderful, kind hearted bride,”

Mikey stared at the floor, clenching his hands into the fabrics of the clothes he wore, hearing footsteps, and a moment later he was staring at the voice's owner's feet.

“I prayed for someone who could love me for who I am, not what I could do for them, or the life I could give them,” The owner of the voice knelt down, and Mikey slowly lifted his eyes, feeling his heart skip a beat as he stared into deep sapphire blue eyes, so similar to his older brothers, eyes that he’d spent the majority of his teen years for those eyes to look at him with anything other than judgment or exasperation.

A large hand reached up and Mikey felt a thumb gently stroke his cheek, subconsciously he leaned into the touch. “I wished for you, Mikey, and before the spell could even be completed, you were there, at my feet, and I could tell then, what I know now, is that you need me, as much as I need you, and I will do anything within my power to make you believe that you deserve the love, and life, that I am offering you,”

Mikey took a deep breath, closing his eyes and turning his head slightly away. “I really wish you would stop talking like that, Leo,” he said, trying to sound annoyed, telling himself again that he should not, and could not fall in love with this Leonardo, that despite the fancy words, the gentle touches, he couldn’t bring himself to believe that this was real, even after a month of being here, he still expected to wake up in the cold lair, in his cold room in the sewers.

TBC