Some TMNT stuff really isn't for little kids.
|Tales Volume 2 > Issue # 34|
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- Plot: Peter Laird & Dan Berger
- Script: Dan Berger
- Artwork: Jim Lawson
- Frontispiece: Sal Velluto & Joe Rubinstein
- Lettering: Melissa Mendes
- Cover: Jim Lawson, Dan Berger & Eric Talbot
- Croaker (death)
- Gei (death)
- Hamato Hana
- Hamato Splinter
- Szefchek (death)
- Wen (death)
Down in the sewers, Donatello is busy repairing one of his proximity sensors when a female ninja swoops by, snipping off his bandanna tails and escapes. Donatello recalls Raph having a similar encounter and decides to head home to tell Leo. Elsewhere in the sewer, Mikey is skateboarding and listening to music and completely fails to notice the female ninja snip his bandanna tails. Mikey returns home and his brothers clue him in. Raph teases Leo that he's sure to be next. At a warehouse, the female ninja returns to the ones who sent her on her errand to collect the bandannas the four rogue Foot Soldiers (Croaker, Wen, Gei and Szefchek). Croaker is furious that the female ninja has yet to collect Leonardo's bandanna and strikes her across the face. The female ninja promises to collect the trophy, as she'll do anything to be a member of the Foot Clan. Back in the lair, Don and Leo discuss the situation regarding the female ninja. Don considers setting an ambush for her on one of their patrol routes, but Leo doubts that she'd fall for such a ruse. He decides to go up to a rooftop and meditate on the subject. While meditating on a roof, Leo is spotted by the female ninja. She strikes and Leo allows her to snip his bandanna, though he quickly subdues her. Forcing her to talk, Leo learns that her name is Hamato Hana and she is undergoing a Foot Clan initiation. Leo allows her to leave with his bandanna.
At the warehouse, Croaker and his cohorts are pleased with Hana's success. Down in the lair, Leo returns, saying he followed Hana to a warehouse by the docks. Splinter tells Leo that he has done well, then goes to his room to meditate. The Turtles then leave to scope out the Foot activity at the warehouse.
Inside the warehouse, the Foot Soldiers and Hana display the bandannas and greet their "sensei". The sensei steps out of the shadows, revealing himself to be Splinter? Splinter tells Croaker that they have done well and that he will fulfill his end of the bargain by passing on martial arts techniques but only to his daughter, Hamato Hana. On a rooftop nearby, the Turtles are monitoring the conversation with some high tech surveillance gear of Donatello's and aren't too happy with what they've heard. Back in the warehouse, after Splinter has left and Croaker dismisses Hana, the Foot Soldiers begin gloating amongst themselves.
Croaker laughs that the old rat bought their story about Hana being Yoshi's daughter and that through her they will learn Yoshi's secret techniques. Then, once they've learned them, they will become more powerful than even the Foot Clan. Listening in, Hana is shamed that she allowed herself to be fooled by the phony Foot Soldiers and realizes that all she's strived for has been for naught. Down in the lair, the Turtles have a million questions for Splinter. Splinter tells them that some months ago, he was approached via the astral plane by a mystic claiming to know of Hamato Yoshi's long-lost daughter, sent to Japan shortly after she was born. The man wanted to learn Yoshi's secret techniques, supposedly for Hana's benefit, but Splinter suspected a ruse. He then orchestrated the bandanna-hunt to test Hana's mettle and see if she alone was worthy of learning Yoshi's techniques (and to see if her lineage was true). Raph demands to know why Splinter never told them about any of this as it went on over the past 6 months. Splinter tells him bluntly that the bandanna-hunt was also meant as a test for the four Turtles one that they failed.
The next night, at the warehouse, Splinter is met by Hana (who is carrying a burlap sack). Hana tells Splinter that she cannot accept his offer to learn Yoshi's secrets, as she admits that she has been lying to him. She is not Yoshi's daughter, but his niece. After Yoshi was exiled from the Foot Clan, all members of his bloodline were shunned and barred from entrance. Wanting to restore the Hamato name within the organization, Hana came to New York to seek entrance through their branch. Splinter says that he senses a light within her and, regardless of the circumstances, would still like to train her in her uncle's techniques. Hana again refuses, saying that Splinter was wrong about seeing any "light" within her. She then empties the burlap sack of its contents: the severed heads of the four wannabe Foot Soldiers. Splinter asks what Hana will do next, and as she disappears, she says that all she plans to do is survive.
Returning to the lair, Raph jokingly asks Splinter how "Foot Class" went. Leo tells Raph to be quiet, but Splinter in turn tells Leo to hold his tongue. Splinter tells his sons that the student often has wisdom and it is the responsibility of the master to seek knowledge from all sources. As he retires to his room, he says that that lesson was one of Yoshi's core principles.