Some TMNT stuff really isn't for little kids.
[So, bud, I'm guessing you've been wondering where the heck I've been, huh? Well, turns out that detective work you and I did totally paid off. We finally found my bro Leo and rescued him—after a pretty gnarly fight. Then our friend April helped us escape to the country, where we're hiding out. We've been here for about a week and things have been... not so great.]
[The bad stuff started when a mutant named Alopex snuck on the van with us from New York. Raph got totally ticked off at her, then there was a huge brawl. First, Raph and Alopex tussled, then Leo jumped in to protect her, then Donnie and me tried to stop them, which only made Raph and Leo madder...]
[Total mess, dude.]
[My dad finally got everyone to chill... mostly. Leo and Alopex took off and they've pretty much been MIA ever since.]
[I'm worried about Leo. He's always been our leader, the big bro with a plan, always taking care of us.]
[But right now, Woody, I swear...]
[...he just seems so lost.]
[We've got him back but it's like he's farther away than ever. Donnie thinks Leo was brainwashed by the Foot, and we gotta give him space. But I'm wondering if that's such a good idea.]
Leo "...Where are you?"
Raphael "Let's go, mutt. And don't make a sound."
[I think we have to take extra care of Leo right now...]
[...'cause I'm not sure he can do it for himself anymore.]
Raph "A little huntin' before bedtime, huh, Alopex?"
Alopex "I wasn't hunting."
Raph "Then what? Seems like every time I see you, you're sneakin' around."
Raph "You mighta fooled the rest of 'em, but I ain't fallin' for your little woe-is-me act. I know you're up to somethin'."
Alopex "Believe what you want, turtle."
Raph "No way!"
Raph "No way you walk away from me like that!"
Raph "You ain't goin' nowhere until I found out what the hell you were doin' out here."
Alopex "Take your hand of me!"
Alopex "What was I doing? I was trying to thank your brother for defending me when you ambushed me!"
Raph "Thank him? By hidin' in the dark and spyin' on him?"
Raph "You expect me to buy that?"
Alopex "No, I don't. And I couldn't care less if you do."
Alopex "Leonardo protected me when he didn't have to. The least I can do is show some appreciation for that, especially with what he's going through."
Alopex "I know what it's like having Shredder in your head, twisting every thought, every emotion."
"You fight it and fight it but it just doesn't stop. It..."
"...It never stops."
Alopex "I know exactly how Leonardo's feeling. So, I was making sure he was all right—that he wouldn't hurt himself."
Alopex "Not like you could understand. You've still got your family, friends... A home."
Alopex "Leonardo and me?"
Alopex "We've got nothing now."
Alopex "Anyway, believe me or don't—doesn't really matter."
Alopex "But you saw Leonardo—how messed up he is. If I wanted to kill your brother..."
Alopex "...I would've done it already."
[Nope, Woody... it ain't exactly been campfire songs and marshmallows out here.]
[And then there's my dad.]
[Shredder broke his leg. it's pretty nasty.]
Donatello "Okay, Father, I think this'll do it for now. The laceration's healing nicely, all things considered."
Donnie "The fracture, though..."
Donnie "...We're gonna have to closely monitor that."
[But I don't think that's how Shredder hurt Sensei the worst.]
Splinter "Mm... Yes."
[And poor Donnie... his smarts are like, off the charts. Heck, he's even got charts to prove it.]
Donnie "You know, Master, now that we've got Leo back, I really need to start working on the Technodrome problem."
[So for him to be stuck in an old barn with no books or computers or gadgets?]
Donnie "It's just... There's not much I can do about it out here. I mean, I've got Professor Honeycutt's journal, which helps, but..."
Donnie "...Well, it just feels like every new delay puts us one step closer to the apocalypse."
Donnie "Without the professor here, I can barely start to understand any of it. But there's no doubt the destruction potential and security safeguards on that thing are huge, and it could be really far along and—"
Donnie "Father? Are you even listening to me?"
[Let's just say it's the ultimate suck.]
Donnie "Forget it."
['Course, we're all feeling a little lost these days.]
Leo (dream) "Where are you?"
Tree (d) "Graall!"
Leo (d) "No."
Leo (d) "No!"
Leo (d) "Rah!"
Leo (d) "No!"
Shen (d) "Do you remember this garden, son?"
Leo (d) "Yes. We've been here before."
Shen (d) "And do you recall what I told you when last we visited it?"
Leo (d) "That when I find what I've lost, I'll know who is responsible for all the pain I've suffered."
Shen (d) "And have you found that which you had lost?"
Leo (d) "I... Think so. I don't know. There are those who took me... Saved me, but..."
Leo (d) "...But I don't recognize them."
Leo (d) "I mean, I know they're my brothers, my father, but... They seem like strangers now. Like... Like ghosts."
Shen (d) "And yet, they are very real... And all love you deeply. You would not be here now if it were not so."
Shen (d) "You have found what you have lost, my child—you need only to proceed slowly and not allow yourself to be overwhelmed."
Shen (d) "A new path lies before you. Your answers await, if only you take the first step."
Leo (d) "But... What about you, Mother?"
Shen (d) "I am needed elsewhere now..."
Leo (d) "Mother... Wait."
Leo (d) "Okay..."
Leo (d) "...I'm coming."
Donnie "Wake up, Leo..."
[We're just gonna have to find a way to work through this...]
Donnie "...Wake up."
[...and get things back to normal.]
[As for April and Casey, we haven't seen them much since we got here. We've gotta keep out of sight, for our sakes and theirs, so they stay in their crib and we stay in ours.]
Elizabeth O'Neil "Mm-hm."
April "Wow. I... I can't believe you're just telling me this now, Mom."
Beth "Well, to be fair, it was highly classified. Plus, it happened when you were in junior high. It wasn't something you share with a kid, even one as sharp as you."
April "And now?"
Beth "And now... I think an explanation is in order."
Beth "It started when Baxter Stockman tapped your dad and a few other scientists to work on a special component with some kind of enhanced healing properties—something with a long unpronounceable name they nicknamed "ooze." "
"Anyway, your dad's team spent years testing and developing it—meticulously documenting it, too."
"Matter of fact, he was still on the project when he had his stroke."
"It was all very hush-hush and proprietary—your dad didn't talk about it much. He just told me it was part of StockGen's bio-engineering efforts."
Beth "Thing is, I'm pretty sure he was having his doubts towards the end. Something was bugging him about the project and I'll admit my reporter alarm bells were going off, too."
April "My mom used to be an investigative journalist, Casey."
Casey Jones "Really? Cool."
Beth "Then, well...your dad got sick and StockGen gave us a very generous compensation package."
Beth "After that, taking care of him 24/7 and dealing with the damn insurance company became my primary "occupations." I hadn't thought of the mystery ooze..."
Beth "...Until you mentioned it earlier tonight."
Beth "You know, April, you were holding out on your dad and me, too—you should've told us sooner about what youw ere going through at StockGen."
April "I know, Mom—I'm sorry. I just thought I could deal with it on my own, and I didn't want you guys to have to worry about me."
April "You had enough on your hands without my problems making it worse."
Beth "Like father, like daughter."
Beth "I was a damn good reporter once. And my gut was telling me that something wasn't on the up-and-up with your dad's project."
Beth "I should've kept you away from that place."
Beth "It's just... StockGen's been so good to us after John's stroke, and the internship was such a huge opportunity for you..."
Beth "I should've listened to my gut."
April "Mom, don't beat yourself up. I'm a big girl and you and Dad always taught me to handle things when they get tough, so I did. I'm okay—really."
Beth "Thanks, kiddo. But no more secrets, okay?"
April "Um... Yeah. Okay."
Beth "You know—there is something you should take a look at. Might be of some use, I don't know."
Beth "Wait here."
Beth "Your dad doesn't go anywhere without this old laptop. It's got all his notes and stuff on it from over the years."
Beth "I've tried to go through it before, but all I see is scientific gibberish and I just don't have the time to research what it all means..."
"...Maybe you can figure it out."
Donnie "Must've been quite the dream you were having, bro. You were talking up a storm."
Leo "I... I was?"
Donnie "Yeah. Mostly mumbling, but I'm pretty sure I heard you call for Mother a few times."
Donnie "And something about ghosts, I think."
Donnie "So, you still dream about her?"
Leo "Yeah. Sometimes."
Leo "But... It doesn't seem like I'm dreaming. It feels so real—like she's really there, talking to me... Helping me. It's like... Like magic. I..."
Leo "...I don't know how to explain it."
Leo "I'll be that sounds totally crazy to you, huh?"
Donnie "Six months ago, probably. But now?"
Donnie "Not so much."
Donnie "With all the things we've been through, all that's happened..."
Donnie "...Maybe there's more to fate and destiny than I was ever willing to consider before."
Donnie "I mean, all these coincidences—what are the odds?"
Donnie "I sometimes feel like we're all caught up in some type of cosmic momentum."
Leo "I don't know. Maybe. Right now, though, I just feel stuck. Frozen."
Leo "Like I'm treading water and going nowhere."
Donnie "Dude, that's just the brainwashing. The Foot did some serious tinkering inside your head, but they don't have you anymore."
Donnie "You just gotta hang in there and know we got your back. Always."
Leo "Thanks, Donnie."
Donnie "Why don't you come back to the barn with me? I'm trying to work the Technodrome problem and I could really use someone to bounce ideas off of."
Donnie "The whole thing—it's just so big and complicated and I'm trying not to let it overwhelm me, but..."
Donnie "...I'm afraid I can't do it."
Leo "You're gonna do it, Don. Trust me."
Leo "You might not see the entire path you're supposed to follow yet, but if you take a first step, you'll start seeing where you need to go much clearer."
Leo "You can figure out what to do about the Technodrome—just do it one step at a time."
Donnie "Hm. Pretty good advice. Thanks."
Leo "Hey, don't thank me..."
"...I learned it from someone else."
Shen (dream) "Hello, my husband."
Splinter (d) "Shen?"
Shen (d) "Yes, Yoshi, it is I."
Splinter (d) "Please, do not look at me. I am... I am ashamed for you to see me this way. A rodent."
Splinter (d) "A broken monster."
Shen (d) "Do not be so foolish, husband. You know as well as I that the true essence of the individual..."
Shen (d) "...Lies within."
Splinter (d) "I have failed, Shen. As a husband and... A father. Our eldest was taken by the Foot... By Oroku Saki. Stolen and perverted to evil against his will."
Shen (d) "And yet our son is now where he needs to be. With his brothers... And with his father."
Shen (d) "You are not a failure, Yoshi. You never were."
Splinter (d) "But... He suffers so. And there is hatred in his eyes... Hatred for me."
Shen (d) "My husband, that is only confusion. Our son has been under a dark and sinister spell."
Shen (d) "But you must remember, Yoshi, there is another force that is always far stronger than darkness."
Shen (d) "Love."
Shen (d) "Farewell, my husband..."
[We're hurting, yeah, but we're way too strong to let this beat us.]
[But just in case, I'm cooking up a serious plan, bro.]
[A little trick of my own I know will bring everyone back together.]
[And I'm gonna put it in motion soon as I'm done with this letter!]
[It's TOTALLY gonna work, dude...]
[...I KNOW it!!]
[I'm gonna close this out for now, bud.]
[I hope everything's cool with you in NYC.]
[Make sure you stay out of trouble...]
[...just not too much.]
[And don't worry about us, dude...]
[...I think everything's gonna be okay.]
[I really do.]
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.