Chapter 1: To Put It Simply
"DON'T WORRY MIKEY! I'M COMIN'!" Raph screamed, rushing into Donnie's lab, only to find Donnie nursing baby Mikey with a bowl of Nightcrawlers.
"Oh." Raph muttered, sitting on a nearby swivel chair and groaning. "Why are babies so difficult to take care of?"
"You're joking, right? You barely do anything to take care of Mikey! If anything, and I can't believe I'm saying this, LEO is the one who does nearly all of the work! It's literally the job that was given to him!" Donnie huffed.
"If that's the case, then why isn't Mikey with Leo?" Raph inquired.
"I offered to take Mikey off Leo's hands. He's literally passed out in the middle of the living room." Donnie replied, just narrowly catching a Nightcrawler that Mikey had dropped. "Leo's been working overtime, and I started to feel bad for him."
"Yeah? Well, maybe he wouldn't be working so much, if you hadn't done this to Mikey in the first place." Raph huffed.
"Oy... PLEASE stop bringing it up... the evidence is right here." Donnie muttered, holding Mikey closer.
Both brothers then began to recall how the family had gotten into this situation.
"Hey Dee! What're you working on?" Mikey asked, bounding into Donnie's lab.
"Death." Don replied, shutting Mikey up then and there.
Donnie snickered. That always left Mikey speechless. I mean, how was Mikey supposed to respond to that? When he tried, it was obvious that he was having a hard time, since he didn't really see the concept of death as a joke. When Donnie thought about it, he realized that the statement was a little mean, considering how Mikey was incredibly horrified of death, especially in terms of their family. Mikey had even said it himself, that he had constant nightmares about everyone being thrown in a vat of acid, or of each of them being beheaded, tortured, torn to pieces, etc.
Donnie really needed to have a serious conversation with the others about this sometime soon.
"Uhh... so... how has your day been?" Mikey asked awkwardly.
"Don't be like that. You know I didn't mean it." Donnie chuckled.
Mikey let out an audible breath, his body losing all hints of tension. Once he had completely calmed down, Mikey sat next to Donnie on a nearby counter. It was nice when Mikey sat and watched Donnie, mainly because Mikey was normally so quiet and polite when he was in the lab. Just like Donnie had taught him.
"And, because you've been good for the past few days, you get a treat." Donnie suddenly chimed, reaching down and opening a small refrigerator, making Mikey gasp and bounce excitedly.
With a smirk, Donnie pulled out a container full of Nightcrawlers, opening the container and pulling out one of the fat worms. It was a mystery in itself as to when Mikey had gained this incessant craving for Nightcrawlers, or as to when the idea of eating bugs in general ever even crossed Mikey's mind. The Box Turtle had been so against a normal diet for his species, and it was assumed by everyone that it would always be that way. But, then again, things change. And no one questioned it too much.
"Want it?" Donnie asked, holding the squirming worm.
Mikey nodded vigorously, smiling widely and whimpering with excitement.
"Then get off my counter." Donnie chuckled, watching as Mikey hopped down.
"Good boy." Donnie chimed, tossing the worm to Mikey, who snatched it up and swallowed it whole.
"Ew." a voice muttered.
Donnie and Mikey turned to see Leo, who was standing in the entrance of the lab, a playfully disgusted look on his face. Leo didn't really understand the appeal of eating bugs, as he had tried to do so once before. And didn't like doing it. The consistency and knowledge of what he was eating made Leo want to hurl, even when he tried different types. Raph and Donnie had attempted to eat insects as well, and it seemed that only Donnie was one to join in Mikey's bug eating habit. Now, both of them would share bags and containers of Crickets, Ants, Worms, and Beetles. They've even fought over a small nest of beetles that Mikey had managed to sniff out.
But, beyond that little fact, Leo just found it amusing that Mikey would willingly follow commands for nothing more than a few bug snacks.
"What do you want?" Donnie asked.
"I just wanted to be nosy." Leo replied, walking into the lab and petting Mikey's head.
"Mission accomplished." Donnie replied. "Alright, I'm starting to get annoyed, get out."
"Aww! But we were just gonna stay for a little bit! Please let us stay! I'll let you have the next giant moth I find!" Mikey whined.
"How dare you." Donnie huffed, turning to face some blueprints. "Just, try not to break anything."
"Can do!" Mikey chimed.
Leo looked to Mikey, smiling mischievously. Mikey looked back, sending a look that said "No! We shouldn't!"
"Oh, come on. It's not like he'll care if we... test out a few things." Leo whispered.
"No. We could get hurt." Mikey huffed.
"Only if we do something stupid. I mean, look at this. Does this look like it could hurt you?" Leo asked, grabbing a cup full of what seemed to be water.
But both brothers knew better than to assume. There was a 75% chance that this liquid was capable of making something explode. Or it really could just be water. They could never know.
"Unless we try it." Leo chuckled darkly.
"No! Don't drink it!" Mikey whisper-shouted.
"Why not? I bet it'll do something cool, like make me grow wings!" Leo replied.
Mikey pursed his lips. That was a true statement. And Mikey had become intrigued by the idea of what the liquid could possibly be.
"Let me drink it!" Mikey ordered, snatching the cup and looking at it, sniffing the liquid and wrinkling his nose at the vinegar-like smell.
"Go on. Drink it." Leo urged.
Mikey rolled his eyes, moving to take a small sip. At that moment, Donnie had turned to face his little brothers, something telling him that he should do so. Once he caught sight of what Mikey was doing, Donnie screamed for Mikey to stop. With a yelp, Mikey threw the cup in the air, and the liquid fell on Mikey's head. Donnie and Leo gasped, waiting for something, anything, to happen. When nothing did, everyone sighed with relief.
"Well, I'm glad that- OH GOD! THERE IT GOES!" Mikey screamed, groaning and wailing in pain as he felt his body shift and shrink.
A puff of smoke appeared, surrounding Mikey, and Donnie and Leo were forced to avert their eyes, coughing and wheezing at the awful smell of vinegar and burning scales.
"MIKEY!" Donnie and Leo screeched, waving the smoke away and coughing.
When things were clear, Mikey's gear and shorts were in a pile on the floor, and, for a minute, it seemed as if Mikey had gone the way of the Wicked Witch. Donnie then began sobbing, and Leo stood in shock, neither knowing what to do, until they heard a quiet giggle.
Donnie and Leo looked to the pile, which had started moving. In response, Donnie reached out a shaky hand to separate the pile of gear, revealing a familiar human baby sized Box Turtle. The tiny terrapin was as happy as could be, and was waving its arms in the air.
"...Mikey...?" Leo muttered.
The baby squealed with delight, raising its arms higher, as if asking to be picked up. Donnie obliged, and stood from his kneeling position, cradling the tiny, naked baby. With a few look-overs, and a lot of processing, Donnie and Leo finally concluded that this was, indeed, Michelangelo.
"How is this even possible? That was supposed to be a growth serum!" Donnie shouted.
"Well, it obviously isn't, Donatello!" Leo screamed.
The two then started arguing, and baby Mikey whimpered, bottom lip quivering before he let out a small trill of discomfort, stopping his brothers' argument then and there. Both males looked down at Mikey with wide eyes, wondering what it was that Mikey had done to bring their attention to him so quickly. Mikey let out another trill, and this led to Donnie and Leo trilling back, confusing both of them.
"I didn't even know I could do that..." Donnie muttered.
"Same." Leo commented.
"Uhh, why is there so much yelling in here?" April asked, poking her head in the lab and gasping as she caught sight of baby Mikey.
April rushed up to Donnie and Leo, tearing Mikey away from them, and cuddling Mikey close.
"AWW! You're so cute! I could just eat you up right now!" April cooed, poking Mikey's snout.
Mikey laughed in response, nibbling on April's finger, and babbling nonsense.
"This is the best day of my life... how did he even get this way?" April asked.
"Uh... he... baby serum...?" Donnie replied, he and Leo still in shock by April's ability to recognize Mikey just from a quick, far away glance.
"What?" April replied.
"Hey, April, did you... find out..." Raph muttered, looking to Mikey.
Raph's pupils dilated, and he reached out to grab Mikey. April huffed, turning her back to Raph. Mikey babbled once more, moving to pull at April's glasses.
"No, we don't grab glasses." April scolded, lightly tapping Mikey's hand.
Instead of crying, Mikey hissed, biting April's hand. April yelped, accidentally letting Mikey go. Leo took no time to rush up and grab Mikey with the speed of a Swordfish. Everyone sighed with relief, and Mikey licked Leo's chin, playing with Leo's mask tails.
"Okay, new rule, let's try to refrain from hitting the baby, M'kay?" Leo muttered.
Everyone else nodded.
"So, what are we supposed to do? When and if dad finds out, he's gonna have our shells." Raph asked.
"Well, he's gonna find out eventually. He's a rat, his senses are highly developed, and Mikey isn't necessarily the quietest." Donnie replied.
"Don-on!" Mikey trilled.
Donatello took in a deep breath, a tear coming to his eye. Leo rolled his eyes, unamused.
"Don't get caught up on the fact that he knows your name. He knows everyone's name. Besides, with him being a baby, I can finally imprint on him." Leo chuckled.
"Wait, who says you get to imprint on him?!" Raph asked.
"I says! Because I'm the one who saved him from sudden death!" Leo responded.
"Maybe so, but you're the one who got him in this mess!" Donnie commented.
"You have no proof of that!" Leo shouted.
"You were going to let him drink the serum!" Donnie growled.
"Oh yeah?! Well, you-"
"DADA!" Mikey cheered.
The teens froze, and everyone turned to look at Splinter, who had no emotion on his face. Mikey began squirming, whining and reaching for Splinter, who walked up to Leo, calmly grabbing Mikey and sighing.
"I will be the one who determines the caretaker of Orange." Splinter announced, walking out of the lab.
"It's Leonardo." Splinter chuckled, poking his head in the lab once more before walking off once more, Mikey in his arms.
"WHAT?!?!" Donnie and Raph screamed.
Leo cheered, tauntingly laughing as he and April walked out of the lab. Donnie's eye twitched, and Raph hissed lowly.
"How come Leo gets to be the one to imprint?" Raph asked.
"I have no idea, and I don't think I want to find out." Donnie growled.
Both older brothers then followed Leo and April out of the lab, meeting the two and Splinter in the living room. There, Mikey was on the floor, a small onesie having been put on him to keep him from getting cold.
"I see that most of you are confused about my decision. But, it must be understood that I am doing this, only to teach Leonardo about responsibility. Taking care of Orange in this state will teach all of you something, yes, but it will mainly teach Leonardo how to look after things, and keep up with them without complaint..." Splinter explained, lip raising in a sneer at the last few words of his explanation.
Leo coughed, blushing and looking to the side.
"You will be able to see my point in the future. For now, as long as Michelangelo is in this state, you will each help to take care of him, but you will leave the guarding and protecting to Leonardo." Splinter ordered.
"And, as for you, Donatello, I expect you to be working on an antidote for as long and often as possible, without stressing yourself out. Do not be afraid to take a break and play with your baby brother." Splinter instructed.
"Hai." Donnie replied.
"So, with that out of the way, it is late, and Michelangelo needs his rest much more than ever at this age." Splinter stated.
"I'll make him a crib." Donnie announced.
"I can hold him until the crib is done." Leo added.
"I'll help Don." Raph hummed.
"And I'll look up facts on baby Box Turtles." April finished, pulling out her phone.
"Then it is decided. I expect you all to share responsibility equally, and to learn to cooperate in order to ensure Michelangelo's survival." Splinter stated before turning and leaving.
"Wait, ensure his survival?" April muttered.
The group of teens then looked to Mikey, who had a disturbing, impish smile on his face. With a few worried glances to each other, the group gulped, suddenly realizing that this was not going to be easy.
That was not only two days ago, and Mikey was already starting to try everyone's patience. He was constantly biting everyone, he had managed to learn how to break into Donnie's mini-fridge, and he had somehow consumed nearly half a container of mini-Legos... without getting sick. Something that killed the brothers inside.
"Yes. This seemed like it would be such a good thing. Until he started acting like a baby." Donnie groaned.
"Well, he hasn't been all bad, at least he hasn't-"
"...Nevermind..." Raph muttered.
"Hehe, and it all goes downhill from here." Splinter remarked, passing by the lab just to say that.
Chapter 2: How NOT to Talk to the Baby
Leo's got a LOT of learning to do about babies.
I probably should have mentioned this in the first chapter, but Mikey is around 2 years old in this fic. :)
Also, yes, I will have chapters dedicated to Mikey hanging out with Raph, Donnie, April, and even Splinter individually, I just want to get a firm establishment upon Leo's relationship with the baby.
Also, Also; I will tell a fortune! Let's look! Aha! I see a fight and a bit of hurt/comfort in the next chapter! Prepare for some light angst! *Insert evil laughter here*
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
"Play! Leo! Play!" Mikey chimed from his crib in the living room.
Leo looked into Mikey's crib before returning his attention to the Tv. The Slider wasn't really one to humor Mikey with playtime. That was more of a Raph or April thing to do. Leo simply saw his role as protector of Mikey being only that. All he had to do was protect Mikey. There was nothing more to it.
"Sorry, Mikey, but I don't think you can play any of the games you used to." Leo commented.
Mikey tilted his head to the side. Sure, he couldn't perfectly distinguish what Leo was saying to a T, but he understood enough to know that Leo wasn't getting up any time soon. So, with a disappointed sigh, Mikey sat down, looking around and pouting. Leo looked back to Mikey after hearing Mikey's sigh, feeling bad for the baby and deciding to do something entertaining.
"FINE. What do you want to do?" Leo asked standing up and walking up to Mikey's crib.
Mikey stood, cheering and clapping his hands. Leo wanted to play! Leo really, really wanted to play!
"Epano! Epano!" Mikey giggled, grabbing at Leo's mask tails.
Leo mentally groaned. "Epano," was Mikey's butchered way to say "piano," and that meant that Mikey wanted to play the cheap piano that April had bought as a gift. It wasn't too bad to listen to, per se, it had a decent tone. The one thing that Leo hated about the thing, was that Mikey had no musical knowledge in this state, so he literally couldn't. Play.
"Uh... how about no? What about Mr. Cam?" Leo suggested.
Mr. Cam was a little stuffed Box Turtle that Donnie had created one day while he was playing with Mikey. It was incredibly adorable, and Mikey absolutely loved the toy.
"NO! Epano! EPANO!" Mikey whined, hopping up and down angrily.
"Mikey, I don't think your Epano can be played right now." Leo fibbed.
"EPANO!" Mikey shouted.
"Mikey, I'm starting to lose my patience." Leo warned.
"EPANO!" Mikey screamed.
"NO! SHUT UP, YOU STUPID BABY! " Leo screamed back.
Mikey silenced, backing up and falling down, pouting and whimpering before beginning to wail. This began to stir something in Leo that the Slider didn't even know existed, and he began to feel a HUGE wave of guilt flow over him.
"Oh no! Mikey, don't cry! Please don't cry! I didn't mean it! I swear I didn't mean it!" Leo pleaded, reaching into Mikey's crib and gently pulling Mikey into a tender hug.
Leo apologized softly and sweetly kissed Mikey's head, holding Mikey against his plastron and shushing Mikey. The baby continued to cry for around three minutes, and then began to calm down, sniffling and nuzzling close to Leo, looking for more comfort. Leo sighed, moving back and sitting on Splinter's chair, leaning back so that Mikey could lean forward and have an easier time calming down.
"Leo didn't mean to scare you. He didn't mean to scare the poor baby." Leo whispered.
Mikey trilled, earning a trill in response from Leo. This action continued on, and it started to sound like a conversation, one in which only Leo and Mikey understood. It was a nice little bonding moment, and Leo started to appreciate Splinter's decision much more. Having Mikey this close was nice.
Unfortunately, however, this one lesson in tone didn't last very long in Leo's memory.
"Leo! It's breakfast time, and I don't see Mikey in his highchair!" Raph shouted from the kitchen.
"I'll be there in a second!" Leo groaned, refusing to leave the warmth of his bed.
"NOW!" Raph and Donnie screamed.
Leo whined, rolling out of bed and grunting as he fell on the floor. Why was he being forced to get up so early, when Donnie or Raph could feed Mikey?! It wasn't that hard! Then again, Donnie and Raph could use that argument against Leo as well.
"You're such a hassle." Leo huffed, poking his head up over his bed to look at Mikey, who was happily sitting in his handmade crib.
"Awake already. That solves half of the puzzle." Leo sighed.
Leo then stood up, dressing himself and grabbing Mikey from the crib, carrying Mikey into the kitchen, and placing Mikey in his highchair.
"His oatmeal is on the counter." Donnie chimed, eating a piece of toast.
Leo said nothing, grabbing the bowl and placing it on the tray in front of Mikey, grabbing a spoon and preparing to start the feeding ritual. Which was as mundane as could be. It was literally nothing more than Leo blowing on the hot food before feeding it to Mikey, who would constantly try to spit the food back up as a game. This annoyed Leo to his core, but, normally, he could work with it.
Today, however, Mikey managed to accidentally push Leo past the limit.
When Leo tried to get the third spoonful of food into Mikey's mouth, Mikey slapped the spoon out of Leo's hand, projecting the utensil into Leo's face. Mikey laughed, clapping and slamming his hands on the tray, somehow managing to flip the bowl of oatmeal towards him. So, covered in oatmeal, Mikey laughed louder, gasping in shock as Leo hissed.
"WHY. ARE. YOU. SO. AWFUL?!?!? WHAT DID I EVER DO TO YOU?! I DIDN'T ASK FOR YOU TO BE THIS WAY! YOU'RE JUST SO FREAKISHLY ANNOYING, AND I WANT YOU TO STOP IT!" Leo screamed.
Mikey blinked, and Raph and Donnie stared at Leo with shock. Mikey then whimpered, sniffled, gasped, and wailed, attempting to back away from Leo.
There went that feeling again.
Leo immediately calmed down, lowering his head and lifting Mikey out of his highchair, shushing Mikey and whispering soothing apologies. Mikey screamed, wrapping his arms around Leo's neck and shaking, trying his best to calm down. Leo sighed, sitting on the floor and beginning to sing softly. This grabbed Mikey's attention, and the baby started to quiet, sucking his thumb and looking into Leo's eyes.
All Mikey saw was guilt and apologetic sympathy. And that made Mikey forget all of the mean things that Leo had said.
"I'm so sorry..." Leo whispered.
"It okay." Mikey replied softly.
Raph blinked, and Donnie dropped his toast.
"What did we just witness?" Raph asked.
"I think we just witnessed Leo learning a lesson." Donnie replied quietly.
"Holy cheese." Raph whispered.
"Holy cheese, indeed." Donnie replied.
Of course, Leo didn't completely learn from this moment, either.
Leo flipped a page in a book that he was reading to Mikey. Things had been calm that day, and Leo had decided to snuggle up in his room with the baby, reading short stories, and placing the occasional sloppy kiss on Mikey's forehead, making Mikey squeal and giggle.
"The Big Bad Wolf then smiled at Red Riding Hood, All the better to hear you with, he said, chuckling to himself. My, what big eyes you have!, Red Riding hood exclaimed. All the better to see you with, my dear, the wolf replied. My, what big teeth you have, grandmother!, Red Riding Hood gasped."
Leo then looked to Mikey, smirking mischievously.
"All the better to... EAT YOU WITH!" Leo screamed, playfully nipping at Mikey's neck.
Mikey screamed, surprised by Leo's sudden actions. At that moment, Mikey panicked, raising his hand- which was decorated with sharp claws, mind you -and swinging his hand at Leo's plastron, scaring Leo enough to let go of Mikey, causing Mikey to land on the bed, face first.
Mikey whimpered, but didn't begin to cry. Instead, he looked to Leo, afraid of how Leo would react. Leo groaned, making sure he hadn't been scratched too bad, before sighing.
Mikey tilted his head. What was so funny?
"Don't be upset, Mike. I get that I scared ya. I'll remember not to do that next time." Leo chimed.
Mikey smiled, crawling onto Leo's lap and babbling. He was glad that Leo didn't get mad and turn into a meanie.
"Leo scary!" Mikey happily giggled.
"No, Mikey scary! Mikey's a big scary monster!" Leo replied.
"Leo scary! Leo scary! Leo big scary!" Mikey cheered, chewing on his fist and squealing.
Leo picked Mikey up, kissing Mikey's cheek and laughing along with Mikey.
He'd remembered and learned from every moment this time.
Had to keep Leo's short attention span, and slightly short-tempered personality in there somewhere. :p
That last one had you there, didn't it? Admit it, it did.
Chapter 3: He Swim
It doesn't take much common sense to know that you should NEVER take your eyes off of a baby for more than five seconds...
(See the end of the chapter for notes.)
"How did you even find this place?" Raph asked, looking around the beautiful landscape that April had discovered.
"I have no idea. I was just walking around, and somehow managed to end up here." April replied, smiling as she watched Mikey roam around in the grass.
The teens had sat on the grass of a peaceful clearing, agreeing that this would be the perfect place to take Mikey as a safe haven. The baby had most certainly loved it, and had taken no time at all to start rolling in the grass. A few sneezes escaped from Mikey, which scared his brothers intensely, but they were quickly reassured when April managed to keep anymore grass from getting up Mikey's nose. The baby had discovered and successfully caught a few beetles that were scuttling about, and happily hummed as he munched on the bugs.
"I'm glad to see that he's putting that Box Turtle sense of smell to good use." Donnie chimed, lying on his plastron.
"Don-on want eat?" Mikey inquired, picking up a large beetle and pressing it against Donnie's snout.
"Eh, why not?" Donnie replied biting the beetle in half.
Mikey then chomped on the other half of the beetle, babbling as he waddled off in search of more. Leo gagged, pretending to hurl in disgust.
"What is it with you two and bugs?" Leo asked, shivering.
"They're good to, and for, us! To each his own, sure, Leon, but I don't understand why you have to voice your disgust about it." Donnie replied.
Leo shrugged, lying back on his carapace and staring up at the sky. So what if he was being honest about his stance on bugs? If anything, Leo should be asking Donnie why it was such an issue to voice said stance.
"You two, I swear. You could love each other like the best of friends one minute, and fight like enemies the next." April chuckled. "You're like eight year olds."
"It isn't my fault that Leon is so immature." Donnie commented.
"And it isn't my fault that Donnie is too smart for us." Leo added.
"Hahah. Exhibit A." Raph chimed.
The four then bantered playfully for the next few minutes, and then laughed at an honestly terrible joke that Leo had told. At this point, it seemed as if everything was perfect. As if nothing bad could possibly go wrong.
"And then when he fell off the table, and landed on his face!" Raph cackled. "It was like watching a pancake falling off of the ceiling!"
Leo doubled over, April snorted, and Donnie shook his head with a wide smile.
"You three, I swear." Donnie sighed, looking to a nearby pond and tensing.
There was something wrong with this scenario.
Something very wrong.
"Where's the baby...?" Donnie asked, near silently.
The others then stopped laughing immediately, looking around with wide eyes.
Michelangelo was nowhere to be seen, and he wasn't making any noise whatsoever.
This drove the teens to jump to their feet, screaming Mikey's name as loud as they could. Everyone looked everywhere possible, finding nothing, and almost dying of horror as they got the same idea. The teens looked to the river, rushing over to the rushing water, and gasping as they found Mikey's tiny bow that they'd put on him before the outing.
"He fell in..." April whispered.
Donnie, Leo, and Raph took no time to start racing downstream, looking and listening for their baby brother. The boys were traveling for at least five minutes, before Leo stopped, swearing that he'd heard a small trill of discomfort. Leo trilled back, gasping and rushing into the river as he heard a feeble trill in response. Leo swam across easily, coughing as he ended up on a small, sandy bank on the other side. When he looked around, Leo saw nothing, beginning to panic. Then, he caught sight of Mikey, who was lying, plastron down on the sand.
"Mikey..." Leo gasped, standing and rushing up to his brother.
"Leo... me foot hurt..." Mikey whimpered.
Leonardo looked down, gasping in response to the sudden sight of Mikey's twisted ankle.
"Kiss the boo-boo?" Mikey asked softly, whining in pain as he was picked up. "Leo hurt! Me hurt!"
"I'm sorry, Mike! Come on, let's get you to Donnie." Leo apologized, holding Mikey close. "We're gonna have to cross over the river, okay buddy?"
"NO! Me no want water! Bath time mean!" Mikey wailed, holding on to Leo tightly.
Leo inwardly flinched, holding onto Mikey tightly and stepping into the water, trying to ignore Mikey's screams of fear. The two got across, and Leo did his best to calm Mikey down as much as possible.
"Foot hurt! Foot hurt bad!" Mikey sobbed as he was sat down in the grass.
"I know, Miguel, I know. We'll fix you. I promise you, okay sweetheart?" Leo whispered.
"Leo! You found him!" Raph gasped, rushing over to the two and near fainting as he noticed Mikey's twisted ankle.
"Waphie, leg hurt..." Mikey whimpered. "Leo no kiss..."
"Mikey, a kiss won't help this time." Leo sighed, making sure to hold Mikey in as comfortable of a position as possible.
"Kiss help better!" Mikey cried.
"Mikey! Oh, thank goodness you're okay!" Donnie shouted, rushing up to Mikey and picking the younger up.
"No pick up! Foot hurt!" Mikey shouted.
"He twisted his ankle..." Leo sighed.
Donnie looked to Mikey's ankle, which was swollen and most obviously in pain. With a heavy sigh, Donnie announced that the group should get home. The others agreed, and they made their way home.
"NO TOUCH! FOOT HURT! DON-ON MAKE HURT MORE!" Mikey wailed at the top of his lungs, a response to his ankle being set back into place.
Raph, Leo, and April all cringed, having chosen to sit in the living room so as to not jump Donnie in his attempt to fix Mikey's ankle. The sound of the baby being in so much pain shook everyone to their core, and no one wanted to say anything else on the matter.
"There. See? Does foot feel better?" Donnie asked softly, finishing up with the wrapping on Mikey's leg.
Mikey nodded, wiping his eyes.
"Don-on kiss boo-boo?" Mikey requested, sniffling as Donnie did so. "Foot hurt. No much more."
"That's good." Donnie sighed happily. "You must be exhausted. Let's get you in your crib."
Donatello then picked Mikey up, carrying Mikey into Leo's room, where the baby's crib was located. Mikey yawned, whining as he was set in his crib.
"Me sleep with Don-on! Big bwubber help foot better!" Mikey shouted.
"Big bwubber be sleepy buddy..." Mikey whispered, drifting off.
Donnie sighed, picking Mikey back up. The baby happily hummed, closing his eyes and falling asleep, mouth hanging open, and drool dripping onto Donnie's shoulder.
The Softshell didn't mind, though.
"Why isn't he in his crib?" April inquired.
"He wants to sleep with me, tonight." Donnie replied, smirking as he saw Leo slightly tense. "Don't worry. You know about the backup crib. He won't be in danger."
Leo looked to the side, his protective instincts kicked into high gear. No matter what his older brother said, Leo was still going to pop in and check on Mikey whenever possible.
"I'll get him in bed. After that, we need to talk about this." Donnie stated.
The others nodded.
"You were supposed to be WATCHING HIM!" Donnie screamed, pushing Leo back.
"WHAT?! It isn't all my fault! You should have been watching him, too!" Leo screamed back.
"Boys, cool it! We all should have been watching him! It isn't anyone's specific fault! We all played a part in this!" April shouted, standing in between the two quarreling brothers.
"April's right! If we had been paying attention, we would have at least heard something!" Raph agreed.
Donnie and Leo growled, turning away from each other.
After this, there was no way that Leo would let Donnie get anywhere close to Mikey! This was Donatello's fault, for sure! Donnie was the one who started yelling in the first place! If it hadn't been for Donnie, then none of this would have happened!
Donatello, on the other hand, was doing his best to reason out a truce between him and Leo. There was no doubt in Donnie's mind that Leo was going to be more protective towards Mikey than ever. The Slider rarely ever went anywhere without Mikey being even two feet in sight!
"Look, I get that you two are upset, but you can't let one shared mistake get in the way of your everyday lives with Mikey." April huffed.
"...Fine..." Leo muttered, turning and facing Donnie, who had turned as well. "Truce?"
"...Truce." Donnie replied, fist-bumping Leo.
"Good, since that's done and over with, we should all get some sleep. All of this shouting has no doubt kept Mikey up." Raph advised.
Everyone else nodded, retreating to their respective rooms (or apartment in April's case).
Leo walked into his room, groaning as he threw himself onto his bed. This was gonna be a pretty sleepless night for him.
Raph walked into his room, sighing as he climbed into his bed, looking up at the ceiling. Today had started off so well, and ended so badly. It was a good thing, however, that the brothers had a strong enough bond to forgive and- somewhat -forget each other's faults. So, with a huff, Raph closed his eyes, and fell asleep.
Donnie walked into his room with a slight anger radiating from him. It wasn't Leo's place to tell him what to do! Assigned caretaker of Mikey or no! Mikey wasn't just Leo's brother! At this point, Donnie had become frustrated with his unturned family. Donnie looked to Mikey's crib, where the baby was currently tensed, obviously trying to make it look like he was sleeping.
"Michael, you don't have to be scared. Don-on isn't mad at you." Donnie assured, reaching into the crib and picking Mikey up.
The baby looked into Donnie's eyes, fear washing away as he saw the reassuring glamour in the light brown orbs. Donnie smiled, walking over to a nearby refrigerator, and opening it, pulling out a small vial.
With a mischievous look, Mikey pointed to the floor, and giggled as Donnie dropped the vial, both smiling as it spilled its contents onto the floor.
"Oopsie~" Donnie chuckled, reaching into a nearby drawer and pulling out a rag, wiping the liquid up, and putting the rag in a containment bucket.
The Softshell then pulled a bottle of "milk" out of the refrigerator. Mikey held his hands out excitedly, beginning to giggle loudly.
"Shh~ Be quiet, you know how the others feel about late night snacks." Donnie chided softly.
Michelangelo nodded, grabbing the bottle gratefully and drinking the sweet liquid down quickly. This little "tradition" of the pair had started around a week or two after Mikey had been transformed. No one else knew about it, and the two planned on keeping it that way.
"Drink it all. Otherwise, it won't work." Donnie chimed, tilting the bottle back.
Once the liquid was gone, Donnie placed the bottle on the floor, and settled Mikey back into the cradle. Mikey looked up at his older brother, smiling widely and making a shushing sound.
"That's right. Now, get some sleep." Donnie encouraged.
Mikey yawned, doing as told. Donnie smiled darkly, and lie down on his own bed after having shed his gear and battle shell. This was a neat little- for lack of a better term -experiment. Never before had Donnie been exposed to something so interesting and real. It aroused a new feeling of nothing but power in the genius, and made him crave more.
Yes, he had been working on the serum to change Mikey back, and yes, he had actually come so close to completing it...
But, like all living creatures, Donatello had made a mistake.
And had accidentally spilled two weeks worth of a retro-serum.
For the fifth time.
With the one witness, being the one he was supposed to fix.
But, hey, as long as Mikey found it as nothing more than an innocent game, then Donatello wouldn't fret. Besides, it's not like Mikey's brain was put together enough to understand what was actually happening...
Is what any normal onlooker might say.
However, in a hilarious sense of dark irony, Michelangelo was perfectly aware of the fact, that whatever was in that bottle, was in no way, shape, or form, simply milk.
Which is why the baby accepted the drink so fervently...
Guesses as to what the liquid is? :3
Also, yes. I AM going down that rabbit hole in this fic. This shouldn't surprise my consistent readers at this point, as I almost ALWAYS have a plot twist somewhere.
Funny thing is- if you ask them, they WILL tell you -that I will add in something like this, and give little to no explanation about it until the time is right. Or I may never give it at all. You'll just have to read on and see. \(*w*)/
Chapter 4: Time to Reunite
Leo expresses his fears about being Mikey's caregiver.
Yeah, I decided to change this chapter because I didn't like it, and it didn't originally go well with the plot.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
"Mikey? You still love me, right?"
The aforementioned baby tilted his head, making a sound of confusion. Such a question was just as indiscernable as it was strange. It was so out of character for Leo to ask such a question.
Especially whilst sobbing and devouring an entire carton of vanilla ice cream.
"I mean, I get it, why you wouldn't, but ya just gotta understand that I'm trying, y'know? I'm new to this parent stuff, and I can't stop myself from worrying 24/7! Not only that, but I nearly got you killed! What kind of parent does that?!" Leo shouted, now seemingly talking more to himself than Mikey.
While this happened, Donnie walked into the living room, having been looking for something. At the sight of his disheveled twin, Donnie's eyes widened, and he very nearly followed his first instinct to turn and walk away.
That instinct was pushed aside, however, when Leo confessed something heartbreaking.
"I don't know what I'm doing, Miguel! I wish I did, but I don't! I'm so scared that what I did will happen again, and I don't know if I can take the pressure of it anymore!" Leo sobbed, curling in on himself and scooping out huge globs of ice cream. "What if something worse happens? What if I'm not there to save you? What if I'm so caught up in my own problems, that I don't notice yours? Oh mi gosh! Are you sick right now?! Are you cold?! Do you have a fever?! ANSWER ME!"
"LEO! He's a baby! He can't answer you!" Donnie shouted, leaping in front of Leo. In response, the Slider screamed, holding the carton of ice cream close. "Ugh. Leo, put the ice cream down."
"Yes. And right now."
"No! You can't take it!"
"You wanna bet?" Donnie asked, taking hold of the carton and wrestling it away from Leo.
"NO! My emotional crutch!" Leo yelped, trying desperately to grab the ice cream carton back. "Goddamn it Donnie! Why can't you just let me eat my problems away?!"
"Because it's not healthy for one thing, and for another, it won't get you anywhere productive anytime soon." Donnie replied.
"Who cares?! If I die, at least he'll have you and Raph!" Leo complained.
"Leonardo! How dare you say that?!" Donnie exclaimed, silencing Leo from that point on. "Just because you made one mistake, does not make you a bad person!"
"But Mikey could have died!" Leo cried out, making no move to stop the sudden hug he was wrapped into.
"I understand that, Leon. And despite what I said those few nights ago, I need you to realize that I meant none of it." Donnie assured. "I was just scared, and I didn't know how to deal with the situation without blaming someone other than myself."
"So... you don't hate me for...?" Leo asked, not feeling up to mentioning the river incident.
"I could never hate you for anything. We're brothers, and we need to stick together. Especially during a time like this." Donnie sighed, letting Leo go and turning to look at Mikey.
At the moment, Mikey was trying to catch his tail, babbling and squealing loudly in amusement. This led the twins to laugh lightly, both sitting down and taking turns to play with the baby.
Sure, it would take a good... however long it took Donnie to finish the serum, to get used to the stress of being a parent, but the brothers were in it together. They were ready and willing to put Mikey before themselves, and had no problem with working as a unit to get the job done.
They were turning into men, and would slowly but surely be ready to deal with anything bigger than themselves.
Especially if that anything involved the smallest, most forgettable villain the turtles had ever faced.
Chapter 5: Learning
There's no such thing as normal when it comes to baby Mikey.
So... this is back. :)
"Where's Aunt April? Here she is! Oh no! She's gone again! Surprise! She's back!"
Mikey laughed loudly, bouncing up and down on April's couch in a frenzied attempt to convey his excitement. This led April to snicker, sitting next to Mikey and smiling warmly. Mayhem joined the two, happily chirping as he nuzzled against Mikey.
"Glad to see that you two get along." April commented, petting both the baby and Yokai fondly. The duo purred contentedly, complaining in their own little ways as April left to fix lunch.
Not too long ago had Raph, Donnie, and Leo dropped Mikey off at April's so that they could do a patrol on the city. Unsurprisingly, Mikey blew a fuse when he saw his brothers begin to leave, and they truly found themselves about to turn and abandon their patrol. Thankfully, though, April managed to distract Mikey long enough for the older brothers to leave. Granted, Mikey broke down once more, but immediately calmed down when Mayhem came in and chirped.
In all honesty, April was surprised to see that Mayhem got along with the baby so well, especially since their first meeting involved an ear piercing hissy fit.
Stirring away from that, however, Mayhem and Mikey were currently sitting on the couch boredly. It had now come to attention that things were incredibly dull without someone older and playful around. To make things seem even more boring, Mikey was just about ready to chew on his hand, a universal baby sign of horrid disinterest in the rest of their surroundings.
Oh, why couldn't something interesting just happen?!
"Mwahahaha! 'tis I! Warren Stone! The biggest and baddest foe of you idiot turtles!"
Mikey and Mayhem blinked, looking to each other, and back at Warren.
"A bug." Mikey cooed, pointing to Warren.
"Yes! I am a bug! But that doesn't make me any less dangerous!" Warren huffed.
"Mikey eat a bug?" the baby asked.
"Uh... no. Mikey no eat a bug." Warren replied.
"Bug know me?" Mikey gasped, shiftng so that he could crawl over to Warren. The mutant worm yelped, turning to run off, and screaming as he was grabbed. "Eat bug."
"NO! Don't eat me, you idiotic loser!" Warren screamed, grunting as he was dropped suddenly. With a scoff, Warren turned to insult Mikey more, and stopped once confronted with Mikey's heartbroken look.
"Mikey be bad..." the baby whimpered, lip quivering before he started to cry. The sight made Warren's stomach do flips, and he felt what was most definitely not guilt.
"Buh... yes! That's right! You're bad!" Warren confirmed. "You're a very bad baby! Grabbing people without permission! You should be ashamed!"
"Oh, should he now?"
Warren stiffened, slowly turning to find the rest of the brotherly pack behind him.
"I swear that I can explain." Warren chuckled. "Perhaps over a nice cup of coffee? Or some cheese puffs? Baby formula?"
"So, who wants to tear Worm Man apart first?" Leo asked, looking to Raph and Donnie. "Anyone?"
"Warren Stone?! In my house?! This has to be the best day of my life! Not only do I have the cutest baby this world has ever seen, but now I have a famous newscaster here too!" April cheered.
"Seriously April? You're getting excited over Worm Man again? Raise your standards girl-chick!" Leo huffed.
"I will have you know, that Warren Stone was perhaps the greatest-"
"Uhh, where'd he go?" Donnie asked, leading everyone to look around. No sounds were made for a millisecond before muffled shouting came from Mikey's cheeks, which were puffed out as if full. Which they were.
"Mikey! Spit out Warren Stone right now!" April ordered, gasping as Mikey hissed. "How dare You hiss at your aunt?!"
Mikey then hissed again, gulping Warren down, and growling, taking a defensive stance. With gaping mouths, Raph, April, and Donnie all stared at Mikey. Leo, however, rolled his eyes, walking over to Mikey and scratching the baby's chin. In response, Mikey trilled, leaning into the touch, and whimpering as he started to gag.
A minute of said gagging was followed by Mikey spitting Warren back up. The baby then whined, looking at Leo angrily as the Slider picked him up.
"Leo take snack." Mikey huffed, looking as angry as he could.
Which wasn't very.
"Aww. Would the baby like some cookies when we get home?" Leo asked. As expected, Mikey cheered, giggling as he watched Donnie toss Warren out of the window.
"We have got to start carrying bug spray with us." Donnie commented, complaining as he was smacked by April.
"You can't kill Warren Stone!" April scolded.
"Why was he here, anyways?" Raph asked, earning a shrug from April. "Well, as long as he's the only "threat" to Mikey in this state, then I think we'll be fine."
"So, who's up for pizza?"
"Nevermind..." Raph muttered. "We're gonna go get him cleaned and put in bed."
"That might be the best idea." April agreed, watching as the brothers started to leave. "Love you guys!"
"Love you too April!"
April chuckled, retreating into her apartment and locking her window. Meanwhile, Warren groaned as he turned onto his stomach, wiping himself free of spit.
"Yet another reason to hate those county-fair losers..." Warren muttered, cursing and grumbling as he made his way back to his apartment.
"Warren! My golden voiced angel! What happened to you love?!" Hypno asked worriedly as Warren wiggled into the living room.
"I got devoured and spit up by a baby." Warren replied sharply.
"Uh... pardon?" Hypno replied, ears shifting back in disgust.
"Oh-ho, you will not believe the lengths those idiots went through to try and throw us off their radar!" Warren shouted. "They turned the orange one into a baby, and as much as I hate to say it, he is disgustingly a-"
"Warren! Don't say it! Don't poison yourself with such a word to describe him!"
"...Adorable..." Warren whispered, making Hypno nearly have a heart attack.
"YES! His eyes shine like stars! His smile is like sunshine! His giggles sound like golden flowers laced in green!"
"What the hell does that even mean?!"
Hypno dramatically threw his head back, gripping his shirt and trying to catch his breath.
"We can't let him stay like that!" Warren huffed.
"Well no shit, Sherlock!" Hypno scoffed. "The hell are we gonna do?!"
Warren placed a hand on his chin, thinking intensely before gasping.
"What if, and this is a stretch, we bring the rest of the villains together? That baby surely couldn't distract us all at once!" Warren suggested.
"...Okay, Warren, you are the love of my life, both literally and figuratively, but... it's a baby. Why can't we just nab him and throw him into the sea?" Hypno asked.
"Because then, there would be one less turtle to hate..." Warren replied, taking a dramatic pose.
"Which means there's one less threat." Hypno muttered.
"Do you support my ideas or not?!" Warren asked, glaring at Hypno with very little venom.
"You know I do. I'm just saying that this is a stupid idea in itself. There's no getting around that."
Chapter 6: Rainy Day
The baby isn't too fond of storms.
(See the end of the chapter for notes.)
Michelangelo screamed, hiding under his blanket, and holding Mr. Cam close. The loud sounds of thunder and rain had awoken the hatchling, and he had now been awake for a full eight minutes. Unfortunately enough for Mikey, his brothers had gone on patrol, leaving him to worry about whether or not they were safe. Sure, it was a bit silly, but Mikey still wanted to protect his big brothers, and he desperately hoped that they would return soon.
"I'll make some hot cocoa!"
"I'll get a movie ready!"
"I'll check on the baby!"
Well then, ask and you shall receive.
"Leo! 'onnie! Waph! Waph!" Mikey shouted, jumping as high as his tiny legs would let him. "Me in here! I here!"
"Yeah, we know Mikey." Leo chuckled, leaning over and retrieving Mikey from the cradle. "Did the thunder scare the poor baby?"
"Yeah-huh!" Mikey replied, patting Leo's face excitedly. "You no trick?"
"No holograph?" Mikey clarified. Leo chuckled once more.
"No, buddy, I'm not a hologram." Leo assured, turning and carrying Mikey into the living room. "Wanna watch a movie with us?"
"Leo! There be big scary monster! Why movie when monster go roar?!" Mikey huffed, patting Leo's face once more. A sign that the brothers now knew as one of curiosity and/or frustration, given the circumstances.
"Michael, it's thunder." Donnie explained. "It can't hurt you."
"But monster go roar! And it come and eat bad boys and girls!" Mikey whined, tucking his tail anxiously. Raph and Donnie looked at Leo in confusion.
"I… have no idea what he's talking about." Leo muttered.
"Big monster! He roar and scream!" Mikey cried, patting Leo's face in an angrier manner. "He get brodders!"
"What? Mikey, we're fine!" Raph worriedly assured.
"You no safe! Monster spit on brodders! They infected!" Mikey shouted, looking Leo straight in the eye and pouting.
It was then when Leo actually understood what Mikey was saying.
"Guys… he wants to play."
Raph and Donnie blinked, looking at each other, and then looking back at Mikey. When the duo understood for themselves, they laughed heartily, leaning against each other for support.
"Brodders no laugh!" Mikey wailed, pretty much baby slapping Leo by this point.
"Yeah guys! Being infected is no laughing matter!" Leo shouted.
This gained Mikey's attention.
"Brodders be infected?" Mikey asked.
"Oh, we're very infected." Leo confirmed. "And now… WE'LL INFECT YOU!"
"NO! I hero! I hero!" Mikey shouted, pushing Leo's face back. "I hero! Do science and help!"
"Oh, there are so many ways that could go wrong." Donnie sighed.
"Hey, just go with it." Raph whispered. Donnie smiled. "Mikey! You have to save us! We're gonna melt!"
"No melt! Hero Mikey give heal kisses!" the baby triumphantly announced, kissing Leo's cheek. "Leo no more infected."
"Why, thank you! My hero!" Leo gasped playfully.
"No thank ma'am! Me go save others!" Mikey rebuffed, slipping out of Leo's grasp, and waddling up to Raph and Donnie. Once there, Mikey placed a peck on Raph's tail, and a smooch on Donnie's knee, giving a triumphant thumbs up. "I kiss infected areas."
"My knee was infected?"
"My tail was infected?"
"My beautiful face was infected?!"
Mikey giggled, falling back onto his carapace and rolling around. With a warm smile, Donnie flipped Mikey over, and the baby waddled up to Leo.
"I Mr. Cam and Hefty?" Mikey requested.
"Sure thing buddy." Leo whispered, standing up and going to retrieve Mikey's stuffed turtle and warm blanket. Upon his reappearance, Leo snickered at the sight of his brothers snuggled up in a small pile. An eye roll was followed by Leo sitting down, carefully wrapping Mikey up like a burrito, and lying Mikey's head on Mr. Cam. After doing so, Leo lay down atop Donnie, purring loudly, and smirking as the rest of the group purred as well.
And before Leo dozed off, a huge question popped into his mind, leading him to tiredly glare at Mikey with a curled snout.
"Did you call me ma'am?"
Originally, this had Rich Text, but the installed writing box is being a butt with that. I hope I conveyed the emotions well nonetheless! ^^