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I'm Sorry I'm Not a Girl

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'I'll do it today' the red-banded turtle decided. Raph had had a crush on Casey Jones for a long time. It was killing him that Casey didn't know. So Raph decided that today he would do it, or else he could loose Casey forever.

"What's up!" Raph was pulled out of his thoughts by Casey's familiar entrance. Today Raph had asked Casey to meet him on a rooftop where they could talk. "So dude, you brought me up here to talk, now what is it?" Casey asked, sensing his best friend's nervousness.

Raph breathed in and out once, twice. "Casey... I l-like you. I have f-for a while n-now." Raph stuttered, feeling his courage melt away with every word. Casey looked at Raph dumbfounded for a second, looking disgusted a moment later. "I could never be with you! I-I'm only into girls! And humans!" Casey yelled, looking angry at his best friend.

Raph felt tears well up in his eyes and fall before he could stop them. "Case-" Raph began. "No. Never talk to me again!" Casey yelled, turning around and walking away.

Raph sank down against the wall, letting his tears fall freely. "I-I'm sorry. I'm n-not a g-girl, and I'-m n-not h-hu-man." Raph sobbed, Casey's words burning him still.

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Raph sat there against the wall on the rooftop for a while, his sobs eventually dying down to small whimpers.

As it got dark, Raph knew he should be heading back, but he didn't want to move. He didn't want to go home and see his family. His stupidly happy family. He couldn't tell them what had happened either, they'd call him a baby, and be disgusted with him that he fell for Casey.

Raph did eventually get up, though he still didn't want to go home. Raph walked through the dark and some random alleyways for a bit, almost not caring if he got attacked.

Raph realized a bit too late, that he was lost. He tried to find his way back out of the maze of dark alleys, but gave up after an hour of trying.

After a few more minutes of walking, Raph found himself in-front of a wood shack looking like a typical witch's hut.

In the time Raph was staring at the hut, it had started to rain heavily. "Shit." Raph muttered, heading into the abandoned looking hut.

Inside the hut looked almost magical. The walls were lined with small charm looking things, jewelry, and bottles of all different shapes and sizes filled with different stuff that looked as if it would be really hard to find, especially in New-York.

"What can I do for you young man?" Raph turned around quickly to find a small old lady standing behind the wooden counter up front. The lady had a kind smile, chestnut brown skin, wrinkly skin, smile marks on her face, and warm brown eyes.

"Can you see me?" Raph asked, wondering why she wasn't freaking out at the sight of him. "Yes, I can. You are quite an interesting creature." The lady answered, smiling at him and beckoning him to come closer. Raph walked to the counter, ready to bolt at any second.

"I can tell something is bothering you young man, why don't you tell me about it." The lady said softly. Raph didn't know why, but for some reason he did tell her, he told her about his crush on his best friend, and that he confessed, and he told her how Casey's response made him wish he was human and a girl.

When he was done, she gave him a thoughtful look, and then suddenly got up. "I think I can help you with your wish young man." The lady explained, looking around the shelves all around the small shop. After a few minutes she seemed to find what she needed, she brought an armful of glass bottles back to the counter and sat them in-front of Raph. She started mixing them into one bigger bottle. "Done." the lady announced as the liquid inside the bigger bottle turned a glowing shade of red. The lady gave Raph a smile that reminded him of an evil scientist, before she broke the bottle and dumped the glowing liquid all over him. "What is this stuff!?" Raph exclaimed as his skin began to burn painfully where the red liquid touched.

The last thing Raph saw before he passed out was the old lady standing over him giving him a kind smile.

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At first when Raph woke up, he thought he was in his room. But the city noises soon told him otherwise. Raph sat up quickly, panicking at not knowing where he was.

The second thing Raph noticed was that he was cold, really cold. Raph felt something soft fall against back and shoulders. He instantly freaked out, his mind telling him that it was some kind of bug that was crawling all over him. But when Raph grabbed at whatever was on his shoulders, he found that his hand was clamped around a fistful of auburn hair. "What the..." Raph muttered, his eyes widening when he didn't recognize his own voice.

"The fuck! I sound like a girl!" Raph exclaimed, cringing at how his throat hurt when he yelled. Raph brought his hand to his face slowly after yanking the hair in his hand and finding that it hurt for some reason. Raph almost screamed at seeing that his hand had five fingers, light skin, and his hand was so much smaller too. Raph slowly looked down, finding his chest and upper legs covered by a black coat. But the part of his legs that he could see were definitely human legs. "Oh My God." Raph said, trying to figure out what to do.

Raph carefully started pulling the zipper down of the coat. His eyes widened even bigger when he saw what was on his chest. He had breasts! "Shit." Raph breathed, noting that he had no clothes to cover him besides the big black coat. "The witch did this! She'll turn me back!" Raph decided, getting up and starting to look round for the witch once he finally got steady on his legs.

Raph cursed again, finding that no matter how hard he looked, he couldn't seem to find the witch's hut. Raph eventually decided to wonder back toward the sidewalk, because he knew that without his weapons, and with this new body, he wouldn't stand much of a chance against anyone who might decide to attack him. Raph reached into his pocket, finding a wad of cash, a credit card, and a small note.

Raph stuffed the money and card back into his pocket and read the note. 'Your wish has been granted. I gave you the coat and some money. Go get some food and some decent clothes. That card is unlimited by the way, so don't loose it.'. The note had no name on it, but Raph had a feeling it was from the witch.

Raph got some weird looks as he walked down the sidewalk to the mall, where he knew April got clothes.

Once there, Raph went to several stores, knowing he only needed one outfit. Raph wasn't used to wearing clothes, so most of the outfits he tried on felt tight and unnatural.

After about an hour, Raph decided on an outfit. The outfit consisted of a black bra, black underwear, a short black skirt, a loose red top, a dark-gray zip-up hoodie, and a pair of black knee-high boots with black fluff around the top.

Raph payed for the outfit and then put it on in a bathroom outside of the store. Raph also had bought a small black backpack that had gold zippers. Raph stuffed the coat into the backpack and put the money and card in as-well.

Raph walked to the food-court, just now realizing he was really hungry. Raph bought a breakfast sandwich and a caramel frappuccino from Starbucks, sitting down and starting to eat. "Can i have your number?" Raph turned his head to see a tall boy with blonde hair and hazel eyes giving him a smile. "What?" Raph asked, feeling confused, until he remembered that he had literally been turned into a girl. 'I guess i'm hot then.' Raph thought, seeing the guy give him another flirty smile.

"To bad for you, but i don't have a phone." Raph replied, giving the guy a small smirk. "Oh. Well, then can i eat with you?" the boy asked. Raph didn't see what harm it could do, besides this boy didn't seem to much older than himself, so Raph was pretty sure he wasn't just some creep looking to get at him.

"Ok." Raph said, the boy giving an excited look as he sat down with his burger in hand. "Are you new in town, i don't think i've seen you around before." The boy asked. "Yeah, i'm new. I used to live here though..." Raph answered, careful not to mention anything about any family or friends. The two of them ate in silence until a familiar voice called over to them. "Hey, dude! Where you been, we have hockey practice later." Raph turned around wide-eyed to see Casey Jones coming toward them. "Jones, dude! Hey. I was just catching lunch, and i met this chic." the boy siting next to Raph replied, waving Casey over.

"Well, hello." Casey said to Raph in a flirty voice Raph had heard Casey use on girls before. "H-hi." Raph replied, resisting the urge to get up and leave.

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"What's your name?" Casey asked, leaning closer to Raph. "Ra-" Raph stopped himself before his name came out. 'I'm a girl now, and I can't tell him who I am.' Raph scolded himself. "Raelyn." Raph quickly lied, hoping it didn't sound like he was lying.

"Raelyn huh? Pretty." Raph blushed at Casey's words, making Casey smirk triumphantly. "I need to leave." Raph stated suddenly, getting up and gathering his stuff, not wanting to stay with Casey any longer. "Aw, so soon?" Casey asked, fake pouting at Raph. "Yes." Raph replied giving Casey a glare before heading out of the mall. "What should i do now?" Raph wondered aloud as he walked away from the mall.

Raph debated going to April's apartment, but decided against it since he'd have to explain the whole situation to her. Raph suddenly heard a ringing noise. Raph recognized it as a ring tone, but he swore he had left his t-phone at home last night. Raph sat down and dug through the backpack until his hand found a flat rectangle-shaped object and pulled it out. Raph saw he had a phone in his hand. 'How the hell did that get there?' Raph wondered as he answered the phone. "Hello?" Raph said. "Hello young man, how are you liking you're new life?" Raph instantly recognized the voice on the other end as the voice of the lady who had turned him into a girl. "You! Turn me back!" Raph exclaimed, not caring who heard. "I'm afraid i can't do that. This iphone is or you to communicate with me and anyone else you would like to." the witch said, hanging up after she had told him that.

Raph went to the dial pad on the phone, he was quickly dialing Donnie's number and on the phone with him before he could stop himself. "Hello?" Raph heard his brothers voice on the other end on the phone and almost cried. "Donnie" Raph breathed out. "What was that? Who is this?" Donnie asked, his voice seeming suspicious. Raph was about to answer when a scary thought hit him. 'I can't explain this. He'd hate me.' Raph told himself, not realizing he was crying at the thought until he felt warm tears rolling down his cheeks. "Hello?" Donnie asked again, his voice concerned and suspicious over the phone. Raph hung up after a second, feeling helpless that he was unable to talk to even his brother.

"Are you ok?" Raph turned to find Casey and the boy from lunch staring at him in concern. Raph turned to face the two boys. "I'm fine." Raph replied, smiling despite the tears still on his face. "You don't look 'fine'." Casey replied, stepping toward Raph and sitting down on the bench next to him.

Casey looked down at the phone, seeing that the girl had just ended a phone call with someone, but he couldn't tell who since the girl's thumb was covering some of the numbers. "Who were you talking to?" Casey asked, wondering who had had the nerve to make the poor girl cry. "My b-brother." Raph replied, regretting it as soon as the answer left his lips.

"What did he say?" Casey asked, a hint of anger in his voice. "Why do you care! Y'know not every girl you find pretty wants you up in her space or wants your protection! I'm perfectly capable of protecting myself Casey Jones!" Raph exploded, getting angrier at Casey by the minute.

Casey stood there dumbfounded as the girl yelled at him. Though at the end he became confused, "He didn't remember introducing himself. Yet, the girl had called him 'Casey Jones'. Sure, Eli had called him 'Jones' as he had been walking over to them, but he had no idea how she would know he was Casey. Afterall, he was pretty sure he'd never met her before.

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Leo was panicking, his brother was supposed to be home hours ago! he knew that Raph could sometimes get caught up or distracted, but Leo had specifically told him to be home by 3 am. It was almost lunchtime now and Leo knew his brother wouldn't be gone this long.

Leo finally decided to call Casey, Casey answered after just a minute. "Yeah, what's up Leo?" Leo heard Casey's voice clear through the phone. "Raph never came home last night, and he doesn't have his weapons or his phone, do you know where he is?" Leo asked, hoping to god Casey knew at least where Raph might be. For a minute, all Leo could hear from the other side of the phone was silence. "Sorry, dude. I don't know where he is, but I'll look out for him. Y-you may want to check the roof of the shut down pizza place." Casey suggested. "Anyway, I gotta go. But I'll look for him." Casey said, hanging up a second after.

Casey felt guilty, really guilty. He knew it was his fault. He had left his best friend alone on the roof yesterday with no weapons and no phone. Casey also couldn't help but remember how heartbroken and vulnerable Raph had looked when he'd left him.

Casey thought back to the look in his friend's green eyes. Casey found himself hurting over how sad and desperate those eyes had looked. Casey couldn't help but think of how similar Raph's eyes were to those of the girl he had met today at the mall, except the girl's eyes had looked so much more... empty.

After hockey practice, Casey went back to the roof that Raph had confessed to him on, he searched around for clues about what might've happened to his friend but unfortunately found nothing.

Casey eventually decided he had to give up for the night, after all, he did have school tomorrow.

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Raph had ended up sleeping on a park bench last night, not having the energy to go anywhere else after he had fled from Casey.

Raph knew this was what he had wanted, to become a girl and human so Casey would love him. But it was proving way harder than he originally thought.

Raph had gotten a text early in the morning from the witch, telling him he had to go to school. That wasn't too bad, but what was, was the fact that Raph was supposed to attend April and Casey's school!

Raph walked to the school in a cloud of gloom, not ready to face Casey again and scared of facing April.

Casey looked up as the new student that was supposed to be in their class entered. "Raelyn?" Casey muttered under his breath, her turning her head away when their eyes met.

Is she still mad at me? Casey wondered, hoping that that wasn't the case. He really didn't want her to be unhappy with him. After all he did like her... a lot.

Casey silently rejoiced when Raelyn was told to sit behind him and April, though she didn't look too happy about it. Throughout the whole class, Casey attempted to get Raelyn's attention, but failing every attempt.

Wow. This will be harder than I thought. Casey decided, having failed at getting Raelyn's attention for the whole class, only getting a cold glare thrown his way after he threw a balled-up piece of paper at her.

At lunch, Casey told April that he was gonna sit with the new girl, she told him that she thought that was an excellent idea to make the new girl feel more comfortable and that she would join him.

Raelyn didn't look up as Casey and April approached her, which made Casey wonder if she had heard him. "Ahem." Casey said, trying to alert Raelyn that they were there so that they wouldn't startle her. 

"What do you want, Jones?" Raelyn said, not turning her head to look at the two people approaching her.

Well that's... kinda creepy. Casey decided, not spending too much time thinking on how she knew it was him. Casey stood there, not knowing what to say from there. Luckily, April took over.

"We'd like to sit with you. You seem kinda lonely." April said, sitting down across from Raelyn and motioning for Casey to follow, not waiting for an answer from Raelyn. "I'm April O'Neil...So, what's your name?" April asked, having not been previously introduced like Casey had.

"Raelyn." Raph answered, not wanting to talk to Casey, and scared April would catch on if he gave off to much information.

Raph was careful only to speak when it was to answer questions that they asked and to answer them with as few words as possible. At some point April gave him a look that almost looked like pity. And then Casey asked a question that tipped him over the edge. 

Casey and April had been talking with Raelyn for a while before Casey asked a question that he was certainly curious about but that he wished he could've taken back.

"Has your brother called you again?" Casey asked, a hint of anger and concern in his voice. Immediately, Raelyn got a look on her face and Casey knew he was in trouble.

"Why the fuck do you care?! When you saw me crying, he hadn't said anything! I just couldn't bring myself to talk to him! I couldn't bring myself to tell him what's happened! Or that I need help! Because he'd hate me!" Raelyn yelled, her eyes going wide as soon as it escaped her mouth. "He'd... they'd hate... they'd hate me." Raelyn muttered, silent tears streaming down her face. Raelyn got up and ran out of the lunchroom before anything else could be said.

Casey and April spent the rest of the day in an uncomfortable silence, Raelyn never once looking at them. After school, April and Casey agreed that they should try to help Raelyn and get her to talk to them, because as Casey stated "She's obviously going through some pretty tough shit."

April and Casey cornered Raelyn after school, not leaving her any escape, leaving her with no choice but to listen to them.

"Raelyn, there might have been a misunderstanding at lunch today. We didn't mean to cause painful thoughts or memories, we're really sorry. All we want to do is help you." April said, her voice soft and gentle.

"No! Get away!" Raelyn commanded, her eyes wide and panicked. 'I've seen this before' Casey realized, thinking back to when Donnie or Raph used to get panicked.

"Hey, calm down. It's ok." Casey assured, walking up to Raelyn and holding her in a tight hug, stroking her hair gently.

Raelyn struggled away from Casey, Casey holding still the whole time. Raelyn did eventually calm down, no longer struggling in Casey's hold.

"We just want to talk, is that ok?" April asked, careful to keep her voice soft. Raelyn nodded, stepping out of Casey's embrace, staring at the ground in silent fear.

"You... you said earlier that if you asked your brother for help, he'd hate you... but it also sounded like you were talking about more than just your brother." April said, a questioning tone to her voice. Raelyn looked up at them, giving them a defiant look before staring at the ground once more.

"I have several brothers, a-and a sister." Raelyn answered, a nervous look on her face. "They'd hate me if I asked them for help. I-I ran away a while ago, they said I was wrong to do it... and I refused to listen. Now, I have no place to stay, and no other family to turn to for help. I can't even talk to my only friends. They'd hate me if I turned to them for help now." Raelyn said, a look of deep sadness on her face.

The lie escaped Raph's mouth efortlessly. But it hurt, it hurt that he couldn't tell the truth. It hurt that he had two people he considered family in-front of him, and he was lying to them.

April thought carefully before giving a reply. "I can help you talk to your family if you want. I have some friends, and they're a group of four brothers, two of them get in fights constantly, and I've helped them make up and talk to each-other before." April offered, giving Raelyn a kind smile.

April was sure they had reached Raelyn when Raelyn smiled back at her, but right after, Raelyn said "I'm sorry April, this time, you can't help." before giving April and Casey a sad smile and walking away.

"We need to try harder." Casey groaned, sighing and sinking down against the wall, clearly exasperated. April chewed her bottom lip thoughtfully, sitting down beside Casey.

"Well... what do you want to do? She keeps pushing us away when we try to talk to her." April said, Casey painfully aware that her words were true.

"We just have to try harder." Casey decided, biting his lip in heavy thought.

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Casey and April had agreed that they really do need to try harder to get Raelyn to open up to them. I mean, it's obvious she needs help, she even said it herself... but what can we do? April wondered, subconsciously tapping her pencil over and over again on the desk.

April glanced over at Raelyn's spot, she was missing today, and it was obviously bothering Casey. All day Casey had been extra fidgety and looking around, looking for Raelyn. April had confronted her friend at lunch about his nervous actions, and he had told her that he was looking for Raelyn, nervous that she wasn't here. After Casey revealing his worry, April also got worried. Raelyn had even outright said that she had no place to stay and nobody to turn to for help, so April was concerned something bad had happened to the girl.

April and Casey met outside the school, planning to go to find Raelyn, both wanting to make sure she was ok. "Where do you think she could be? We've looked all over!" Casey exclaimed, getting a bit exasperated with the one-sided hide and seek game Raelyn was playing with them. "Where did you first meet her?" April asked, remembering that last night Casey had explained how he had previously known Raelyn.

"We met in the food court at the mall, Eli Hollar was trying to flirt with her." Casey recalled, putting emphasis on 'trying', both him and April knowing Eli was a terrible flirt, having had to witness it multiple times. "Alright, well, let's try there." April suggested, walking toward the mall. "Right. Ok. O-Oh... wait up!" Casey called, rushing after April.

Casey and April reached the mall, looking around the food court, Raelyn nowhere in sight. "Let's split up and try a couple different stores..." April suggested. After hours of searching, the two met back up near the foodcourt, sharing what they had found. "She's not here. She's not anywhere!" Casey said, sounding defeated that neither of them could find Raelyn. "Casey, maybe we're not searching hard enough..." April suggested, knowing that Casey was distraught.

"No, April, she's not here. I'm going home for the night, we have school tomorrow." Casey grunted, starting to walk away from his red haired friend. "Fine.". April finally gave in, knowing that Casey was right. It was Wednesday tomorrow, the hardest day of the week, at least... in April's opinion. Besides, if Raelyn had been here today, she was gone now.

Chapter Text

Leo, Donnie, and Mikey had been searching the city for Raph ever since Leo had called Casey and Casey hadn't known where Raph was. Leo remembered the panic he felt when he had realized Casey didn't know where Raph was, and that Raph had left his phone and weapons behind at the lair. It was a lingering panic, the feeling of his stomach turning into an endless pit of darkness. Leaving him feeling empty.

Donnie had come to several scary conclusions of what happened to his strongest brother, but none of them he was going to share with Leo and Mikey, unless absolutely necessary. They hadn't called April yet, because they didn't want to send her into a full blown panic. Though... Leo thought it was about time to tell her. So they agreed (came to a compromise) that they would tell her tonight, though Donnie was still a bit opposed to the idea. Even-though Donnie was the most opposed to it, he ended up being the one who was going to tell her (he lost a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors).

Leo was running around the city again, hopping from rooftop to rooftop. Every night, Leo searched the roof of the old shut down pizza place, hoping to find his missing brother there. Raph came to the roof sometimes when he was upset, and Leo was hoping he'd show up again. Though he knew it was hopeless, Raph had been missing for three days and they were not finding anything.

Leo arrived at the rooftop and looked around, his gaze stopping at a few strands of Auburn hair sticking out from behind a couple of stacked cardboard boxes. Leo inched closer and crouched down, holding a strand of soft hair up in front of his face. Luckily the hair was long enough as to not pull on the person's head as Leo examined it. Leo was startled by a sudden scream. Looking up, Leo almost yelped, a teenage girl's face was staring at him fearfully from behind the boxes. Leo let the hair fall from is hand, finding himself staring at the frightened girl. She had emerald green eyes, pale skin, and a waterfall of wavy auburn hair that ended a bit past her waist. The girl was dressed in a gray tank-top, navy blue jeans, and a big black jacket looking much too big for her. She also had on a pair of black hightop converse sneakers.

"What do you want?!" Leo was startled by the question, expecting a scream of terror, not a startled question and a defensive glare. "No-nothing, I-I was looking for my brother... he disappeared a few days ago and he was last seen on this rooftop." Leo answered, holding out his hands to show her he meant her no harm. "Yeah, ok, well, leave me alone." the girl snarled, sinking back toward the protective shadows the stacked boxes provided. "Shouldn't you get home? ...It's really late." Leo asked, concerned for the girl. "I don't have a home anymore, I sleep here. Now leave me alone, I want to sleep." The girl answered, looking at Leo with an annoyed, bored expression. There was something familiar about the way she looked at him, but Leo just couldn't quite place it.

"You can't sleep here! ...You might get hurt, or sick." Leo exclaimed, surprising even himself at how protective he felt over the girl who he had never even met before. The girl looked him over suspiciously, a smirk replacing her shocked look a moment later. "And why do you care... hmm?" the girl asked, suddenly standing up so that she was momentarily taller than Leo. Leo stood up quickly after, becoming taller than the Auburn-haired girl standing before him.

"I just... don't want an innocent person to suffer." Leo said, watching the girl just as closely as she was watching him. "I can take care of myself Le-! I can take care of myself." Was she about to say my name?? "What were you about to say?...".

"W-What?" Raph stuttered, hoping Leo had not heard his slip-up, but his prayers obviously not answered. "You were about to say my name... weren't you." Leo stated, watching the girl's expression shifting into one of fear. "No! Of course not! I don't even know your name!" the girl yelled, a defensive look on her face. "Ok, ok. It's alright, I must've just been imagining things..." Leo assured, secretly knowing he hadn't. 'How would she even know my name though?' Leo frowned, knowing that it was impossible, he'd never met her before... at least, not that he remembered.

Leo was snapped out of his thoughts by a coughing noise. Leo saw the girl was coughing strongly into her sleeve, the cough leaving her shuddering. Her small hands pulling the oversized jacket tighter around her. "Are you sick?!" Leo asked, a hint of panic in his voice. "No. I'm not. Leave me alone unless you want to die." the girl threatened, glaring at Leo harshly.

Raph watched Leo hesitate before backing away. 'He's leaving...!' Raph realized, suddenly feeling an unwelcome rush of panic. "No!" Leo flinched, the girl had darted forward, faster than Leo could've predicted, and latched her arms around his leg. "No... don't leave. D-don't leave me... Please." Leo was shocked, just a minute ago, the girl had been yelling at him to leave her alone, but now she was clutching onto his leg and sobbing and... begging him not to leave. "I-I... I won't leave you." Leo assured, kneeling down and wrapping his strong arms around the girl's shoulders. "You're gonna be ok.".

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April entered her apartment tiredly. She had walked Casey home from the mall, feeling a bit afraid to let him walk home in the state he was in. She had then walked to her apartment, which was, unfortunately for her, a bit far from Casey's.

April lay there in her bed for a few minutes, not having the strength to get up and get undressed or brush her teeth. Until, "Ring, ring! Ring, ring!" April got up from the bed slowly, walking into the living room to answer the phone. She was a bit confused though when the ringing did not appear to be coming from the house phone or her mobile phone. 'Ah, my tphone'. April walked into the bedroom, digging through her backpack to find her tphone ringing loudly with a call from Donnie. "April, hey, we need to talk." April frowned, this didn't sound good.

April hadn't heard from the turtles in about a week, so when she had gotten an urgent call from Donnie telling her that Raph had never come home Saturday night and that they'd been searching for him since Sunday, she was... shocked, to say the least. April gotten a bit pissed off when she had asked if Casey already knew, and Donnie said that they had contacted Casey on Sunday. But Donnie had explained that they hadn't told her because they didn't want her to panic, and that they had only contacted Casey because Raph had gone to see Casey Saturday night. April didn't stay pissed for long though, as her worry overpowered her anger.

At the end of the call, after April had gotten all the details and everything, April was intent on finding her missing friend. "April... me, Mikey, and Leo talked and we decided we don't want you to go looking for him, ok?" April was shocked, she hadn't expected Donnie to guess that she was going to do just that. "How did you-" April began, her tone accusing. "We just know you so well. But seriously, this could be serious and we don't want you to get involved in something dangerous." Donnie stated, a warning laced into his assertive tone. "Yeah, fine. I won't go looking for him, but if I see him, I'm doing something. And I'm keeping my eyes open." April stated, tired of being told what not to do. "Ok, fine. Just... April, stay safe." Donnie said, his voice quiet. "I will, bye Donnie." April said, her voice soft as well, a warm happy feeling overtaking her at the thought of Donnie's obvious concern for her.

After April finished talking with Donnie, she decided she had to call Casey. Afterall, she was angry with him, he had known that Raph was missing but he hadn't told her. And she knew it wasn't out of concern for her, it was guilt.

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"You're going to be ok." Raph kept replaying it in his mind, tightening his grip as Leo jumped the distance between another building. Raph remembered getting sleepy and having a pretty one-sided conversation with Leo, though he can't remember what he said. Leo had then picked him up and carried him on his back, Raph hadn't struggled, he was too tired.

Leo felt the girl's grip around his neck tighten, 'Good, she's still awake.'. After Leo had comforted her, he could tell she was beginning to get sleepy. She was muttering quietly, begging him to stay, and apologizing for god knows what. Leo only understood some of it. 'It's getting late, I should get home... But I can't just leave her here.' Leo finally decided that he would drop by April's apartment and see if the girl could stay with her for the night. "What's your name?..." Leo asked, wondering if she was even awake enough to process his question... "You know who I am idiot..." Leo frowned, confused. He had never seen the girl before tonight and he definitely didn't know her name... maybe she thought she was talking to someone else?

Leo finally arrived at April's house, tapping on her window. April opened the window a second later, startled as she saw Leo standing on the balcony outside her window. "Leo?! What are you doing here?" April asked, letting Leo into the apartment quickly, checking to make sure nobody saw. "I went to look for Raph, and I found a girl on the roof. She said she had nowhere to go, that she lived on the roof. I was about to leave, but she didn't want to be left alone-" "She wasn't freaked out by the sight of you?!" April exclaimed, having not seen who it was yet. "Nope." Leo answered nonchalantly, having already realized how weird that was. "Anyway, I calmed her down and she got really tired. I decided to bring her over here and see if she could stay with you?.." Leo finished, stating the last part as a question.

"Yeah, she can stay, but only for a little while." Leo thanked April, walking over to the couch and laying the girl on it gently. April gasped as she saw who it was. "April?... Is something wrong?" Leo asked, standing still near the couch, hesitant and nervous. "I know her. Her name's Raelyn... She's the new student at the school me and Casey go to..." April walked slowly towards the couch, her eyes stuck on Raelyn's sleeping face. Leo looked at April, confused. "Casey met her at the mall the day before she showed up at our school. She's new, and she didn't come to school today... me and Casey were really worried and we went looking for her after school." April explained, looking sad and just a bit guilty. "She can stay... just... she might freak out when she wakes up... Leo, can you stay until she wakes up? Maybe if she sees you then she'll stay calm." Leo hesitated, wondering why, if she knew April, that Raelyn would freak out. Unless... "April? Do you two not get along well?" Leo asked, careful with his question. "I don't know... But we had a little misunderstanding and she just might freak out if she wakes up in my house, afterall, she barely knows me. But her and Casey seem to not get along well... I think that they had some sort of fight the first time they met at the mall, but Casey won't tell me anything." April answered. 'Does she not like me and Casey...?' April hesitated, she didn't think so, but she wasn't sure.

"Yeah... I'll stay. I'll call Donnie and let him know." Leo stated, stepping to the side to call Donnie. April inched closer to Raelyn, not wanting to wake and startle her. April frowned, hoping that once she woke up, Raelyn wouldn't freak out and want to leave. Just then, Raelyn's eyes snapped open.

Raph couldn't hear anything, and his vision was too blurry. He felt dizzy, though he realized he was lying down, a soft pillow under his head. When Raph's vision cleared a bit, he realized he was on the couch in April's apartment. He was calm for only a second before he realized that this was somewhere he shouldn't be right now. 'I can't be here! She still thinks I'm Raelyn!!'.

April gasped as Raelyn shot up, racing straight to the window, bumping into Leo, who had just got done talking to Donnie. Leo turned, seeing Raelyn looking up at him with wide, panicked eyes, backing away from him slowly. Raelyn had backed herself into a corner, her wide eyes darting around panicked. Raelyn looked down at her hands, her expression shifting into anger and sadness. "Hey, calm down... It's ok." Leo slowly went toward Raelyn, watching her carefully to make sure she wasn't going to catch him off guard and run. Leo wrapped Raelyn in a hug, trying to calm her as if he was calming one of his little brothers.

Raph stood still, shocked as Leo wrapped him in a hug. Raph sank into Leo's hold, sobbing into Leo's shoulder. Wrapping his arms around his older brother in a death grip, as if he was afraid Leo would disappear if he let go. "I'm s-sorry, I'm s- I'm sorry"

Leo let Raelyn sob into his shoulder, frowning as she started apologizing again. 'It's the second time she's apologized to me tonight... and I don't even know what she's apologizing for...'. "Shh, you're ok. You don't need to apologize. You're ok." Leo whispered, hugging her tightly.

April watched the scene before her, frowning as Raelyn started apologizing between her sobs, Leo comforting her with soft whispers. April decided that she really did need to talk to Raelyn, especially because April was concerned with the fact that Raelyn kept apologizing. April also was curious about why Raelyn hadn't freaked out at the sight of Leo. Afterall, any normal person would've probably screamed and ran. April had screamed at the sight of them the first time, eventhough they were clearly trying to help her. Casey hadn't exactly freaked out... but then again, Casey wasn't really all that normal...

After Leo had calmed Raelyn down, she had sat there, incredibly still against Leo's chest. Leo got up and carried her to the couch, sitting her down and kneeling down in front of her. "I'm going to have to go back home, but you're going to stay with April... ok?" Leo hesitated, wondering if Raelyn would even agree to stay with April, seeing as they weren't exactly on good terms.

Raph nodded, holding back the tears from his eyes. He didn't want Leo to leave him. He was scared of being by himself. 'You idiot. You've been by yourself before. You can handle this. You should be able to handle this.' Raph frowned, he should be able to handle this... he didn't know why he wouldn't be able to handle this. He could handle anything.

Leo was shocked, a smile spreading across Raelyn's face. Leo looked closer though, realizing the smile was only a mask, it was fake. A frown overtook Leo's features, 'That smile's so familiar...' Leo realized, thinking back to all the times his brothers had given him that smile. The smile that was forced and fake, though real enough to fool anybody who they weren't close to. "I'll be ok. It's ok. You can leave." Raelyn stated, her smile still present on her face. "I'm sorry, I'll come to check up on you tomorrow." Leo promised, getting up and exiting out the window.

Chapter Text

April and Raelyn watched Leo leave, turning back towards each other after he was gone. "You can stay in the guest room..." April offered, not exactly sure what to say. "Maybe you should take a shower first...?" April asked, wondering if Raelyn would take that badly. "Sure." Raelyn got up, walking toward the bathroom. April started after her, wondering how-in-the-world Raelyn knew her way around when she'd never been in April's apartment before.

April followed Raelyn to the bathroom, confused as Raelyn walked into the bathroom without hesitating once, not even questioning herself on where she was going on the way there. "How did you know were the bathroom was?" April asked, leaning against the door frame, suspicion written over her face.

Raph turned his head, trying to keep the expression of 'I'm screwed.' off his face. "Umm, I just guessed." Raph lied, keeping her voice steady. "You just guessed?" April repeated, disbelief coating her tone. "Yeah, lucky guess." Raph stated, almost rolling his eyes at how April didn't even seem to be trying to get herself any answers.

April gave in, sensing that she wasn't going to get a straight answer. April and Raelyn stood there awkwardly for a few moments, a thick silence between them. April suddenly spoke up, breaking the silence. "I'm gonna wait in the living room... call me if you need anything." Raelyn nodded, prompting April to walk out of the bathroom, heading to the living room and turning on the tv.

Raph stood awkwardly for a few seconds after April left, making sure April was gone before closing the bathroom door and releasing the breath he'd been holding. Raph bit his lip, looking around the small bathroom.

Raph turned the shower on, stripping himself of his clothes, dumping them in a pile on the floor. He slipped into the shower, eyes widening in shock at how warm it was. Back at the lair, they mostly bathed with cold water, since it was a pain for Donnie to try to heat water and it was often unsuccessful. Though, for a months at the lair, they'd had warm water due to a machine Donnie made. Though the machine eventually blew up and thankfully none of them were in the shower when it happened. But after that, they'd had to get used to freezing cold water again.

Raph became over heated easily, because he was not used to the warmer temperature of the water. Raph sighed as he turned the water to cold, his body relaxing under the more familiar feel of the water. Raph got annoyed when he had to wash his hair, not used to having hair at all much less really long hair that was a pain to wash.

"I swear I'm gonna chop off all this damn hair." April turned her head, seeing Raelyn come out of the bathroom, a towel wrapped around her body, grumbling. Raelyn looked up, locking eyes with April from across the room. Raelyn looked away, clearly embarrassed. "Do... do you have any night clothes I could borrow, I don't have any..." Raelyn asked, looking down as if she was ashamed of even asking. "Of course I do. Come with me." April led Raelyn to the back of the hall, into her room, opening the closet. "Pick whatever you like." April said. Raelyn pointed at a folded pair of black sweatpants and a black tank-top. "This?..." Raelyn asked, looking to April for approval. April smiled, taking them off the shelf and handing them to the girl beside her.

"Raph headed back to the bathroom, unfolding the clothes. 'These... look a little too big to belong to April.' Raph contemplated, holding the clothes up in front of her before beginning to slip into them. Raph only had a slight problem, the pants were so big that they kept trying to slip off and they pooled down around his feet. Raph pulled the drawstring of the pants, making sure they weren't going to slip off before exiting the bathroom.

April saw Raelyn exit the bathroom, looking small in the oversized clothing. April frowned, wondering why she even had that clothing in her closet in the first place. 'Oh right! Those are Casey's clothes!' A few months ago, Casey had been staying with April when his family went away for a while, and he had left the clothes he'd brought with him after he left. April waved off the thought, focusing on the girl in front of her. "Hey, do you want to watch a movie?" April suggested, not feeling like sleeping just yet. "Sure, what movie?". After they picked a movie, they settled in on the couch, watching the movie tiredly.

Halfway through the movie, April got up, remembering something she had to do. April walked to her room, promising Raelyn she'd be back. Picking up her phone, April called Casey. "Red? Isn't it a bit late?" Casey asked, sleep laced into his drowsy tone. "Casey, we need to talk." April stated, not in the mood for any nonsense. "Yeah?, What's up?" Casey asked, sounding only a bit more awake. "Donnie called earlier tonight, telling me that Raph has been missing... since Saturday!" April said, a growl in her voice. "He told me you already knew. And that you are the last person he saw before he went missing." April was mad, and Casey could tell. "Listen, Red. I've told Leo and I'll tell you, I don't know where Raph is." April scowled, Raph and Casey were best friends! -She would think Casey might be more concerned than he was seeming to be.

Casey wasn't in the mood for this, he didn't want to talk about Raph. Casey felt guilty for leaving Raph alone and vulnerable on that roof. Casey already knew it was his fault Raph was missing. And he didn't need more people reminding him of that.

"Casey I have a feeling you know more about this than you're letting on." April stated, her tone defensive and accusing. Casey frowned, getting the feeling that April just wasn't going to give up. "I don't know where he is. I-I wish I did, but I don't." Casey stuttered, eyes downcast and voice low.

April took pity on Casey, 'His best friend is missing, and I'm accusing him of being involved in his disappearance. This isn't fair.'. "Sorry, Casey. I- just, you didn't even tell me! You knew Raph was missing since Sunday and you said nothing! You even went about your day as usual, as if Raph wasn't missing." April felt like she was breaking at this point. She almost couldn't tell what she was mad about anymore, she felt a growing sense of numb, of emptiness in her chest, as if there was something missing.

"I'm sorry I didn't tell you... I-I felt guilty about Raph going missing. I was the last one to see him. If I had just walked him home or something. I-... I just feel like I could have done something that night to prevent what happened." Casey admitted, getting lost in thought after saying it. He didn't lie... but he didn't really tell the full truth either. He should've insisted on walking Raph home. He saw how broken Raph had looked, he should'nt've just stormed off, he should've done something to make sure Raph was going to be okay. But 'should haves' certainly weren't going to help now.

April hung up after Casey's confession, not knowing what to feel. She felt like she was breaking. She was angry, and sad all at once. And then there was also that terrible aching feeling of emptiness that she couldn't seem to get rid of. She wanted to cry, she felt like sobbing, but no tears would fall.

April eventually got up, trudging back into the living room, where Raelyn sat on the couch, watching the movie with blank eyes. Raelyn looked up at April's arrival, a flash of concern in her eyes as she saw April's face. Without a word, Raelyn stood, turning off the tv and pulling April down to the couch with her. April felt her floodgates collapse as Raelyn circled her arms around her in a comforting embrace. April sobbed, her arms wrapped around Raelyn tightly, her hands balled up into fists, holding onto Raelyn's shirt tightly.

Raph held April tightly, stroking her back as she sobbed. Raph had never seen April like this, and he doubted she would've shown this side of herself to him if she actually knew who he was. After all, sometimes it was easier opening up to someone who you barely knew because they had no mental image of you yet that you had to fit.

April opened her eyes to blinding sunlight. 'What time is it...?' April felt a weight on her waist and hot breath on the back of her neck, soon realizing why as she looked around. She and Raelyn were lying close together, legs entangled, Raelyn's arm thrown over April in a protective embrace. April's back was pressed against Raelyn's chest, Raelyn's face nuzzled against April's neck. They were on the couch, sunlight streaming through the windows. 'We must've fallen asleep after...' April didn't even want to think about what had happened last night. She was usually a pretty happy person, and she almost never cried... but last night she had definitely done a lot of crying.

April tried her best to get up without waking Raelyn, but the minute April touched Raelyn's arm, the girl's eyes flew open. Raelyn's eyes darted around the room before landing on April. "Are you okay now?" Raelyn asked, sounding legitimately concerned. April smiled softly, "Yeah, I'm okay... By the way, thanks. For what you did last night." April said, feeling a bit ashamed and embarrassed remembering last night. "No problem. I-... I care about you y'know. I don't want you to be upset." Raelyn stated, refusing to meet eyes with April, her face red in embarrassment. April smiled, surprising Raelyn with a hug. "I care about you too. I want to help you." April could feel Raelyn stiffen. "But I'm not gonna push you into anything. You can stay here with me. And you should know that you can come to me for help." April stated, getting up and smiling at Raelyn before heading to the kitchen to make breakfast.

April was standing at the counter, trying to figure out what to do for breakfast. April was pulled out of her thoughts by someone wrapping their arms around her waist. April looked over her shoulder, seeing Raelyn standing behind her. Raelyn had her arms wrapped around April's waist, her head resting on April's shoulder, still tired. "Let's just go out for Breakfast, I'll pay." Raelyn suggested, grogginess still evident in her voice. "But do you even have any money?" April asked, not wanting Raelyn to spend money on her, whether she had the money to or not. "Yeah, I got some money. Come on, It'll be my treat." Raelyn said, smiling at April.

April couldn't deny that the thought of being treated to breakfast was tempting. But she wasn't even sure they had time to go out. After all, it was Wednesday, and she didn't know exactly what time it was, but they did have to go to school anyway. "I know what you're thinking. 'We'll be late for school!'," April laughed lightly at the way Raelyn mocked her. "but what's the use, we're already late. So why not have breakfast, and then go to school, but on a full stomach!" Raelyn finished. April had to admit that the smaller girl made quite a compelling argument...

"Okay, fine. Let's go to breakfast!" April announced, seeing a grin spread across Raelyn's face. "C'mon, I know just where to go." Raelyn said, giving April a look that almost resembled a smirk.