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The Water God's Son

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Sonic’s earliest memories weren’t the best, even if they were clear. He remembered relaxing in a warm...Bubble? With a living, relaxing blue light surrounding him. But then the...Bubble...Popped? And he was thrust upward as water fought to get into his lungs.

He remembered breaking the surface of the water, only to be pulled down under again by a strong current. Then he was thrust along, barely managing to get a handful of breaths now and again, always on the verge of drowning, hitting stones and the banks of the river he was being carried down. Up, down, brain screaming at him to get air, get away, for what felt like hours.

When Sonic finally managed to crawl ashore, he collapsed, weak, against the ground. He remembered crying, saying “Ch-Ch—”

Sonic doesn’t remember who he was trying to call. All he remembers is waking up, alone and freezing, in a forest, with a painful itch in his heart that he couldn’t explain.

And a new, intense fear of water.

Which brings him to this current situation, which is hell, or nearly, for Sonic. Station Square is completely flooded, and the water is increasingly rising as more pours in from the skyscrapers. Sonic is fighting the urge to scream as he focuses on the water lapping at the edge of the collapsed highway he’s on, oblivious to whatever Tikal was saying.
Yes, water, flowing, ebbing, all around him, threatening to take him and pull it under like it did before, crushing his lungs…

“His heart is filled with anger!” Tikal was saying, “If this goes on, he’ll destroy the world like he did before—We must seal him inside the Master Emerald, now!”
Strangely, Sonic felt a flash of anger at that.
“How’s that going to help?!” Sonic said, turning back from the water. “That’s not going to change how he feels inside, is it? His anger just won’t vanish—He’ll just be trapped forever!”
Tikal turned to him, pain and grief on her face.
“What choice do we have?!”
Sonic turned, and there Amy was, running over with a colorless Chaos Emerald.
“Can this help?” She asked.
“Uh…” Sonic said.
This time Knuckles, Big, and Tails were running over.
“Sonic!” Knuckles continued, panting, holding his injured side, “Sonic! That beast isn’t using all of the Emeralds power—not yet, anyway—If you can activate these, then you might be able to go Super Sonic!”
At that, Knuckles slumped against the guard railings, face white with pain. Sonic turned to Tikal.
“Can I do anything with that?!”
Tikal looked at him, expression soft, sad, and calculating all at the same time.
“If you…” She started, “If you manage to separate him from the Chaos Emeralds’ power, He might… He might listen to reason. But it’ll be very dangerous.”
Sonic gave a slightly hysterical laugh as he scooped up the Emeralds. “Danger is my m-middle name!”
Clutching the Emeralds tightly, he closed his eyes and mentaly reached inside them… Looking, searching… There! Grasping the wisps of power, Sonic yanked it out, and gave a breath of relief as his quills turned a blinding gold…
And then he was off, flying over the cold, hungry water… Sonic forced himself to look up and away from the dark body underneath him, but only to focus on the dark body in front of him, also… made of water.
Then the thing’s tentacles reached up, and there was more water, surrounding him, threatening him, and his throat closed off… but somehow, the itch inside of his heart, the one from all those years ago, was back in full force. It was stronger than his fear of water, stronger than anything he had felt before…
Somehow, he was going to finish this.
Somehow, this fight between him and this beast was personal.

Chaos threw beams of light, and they seared his side. Sonic hissed in pain, but flew forward, faster, because now he felt a connection between him and the Beast. He began to pull energy from Chaos, but promptly stopped and covered his ears as an earsplitting screech struck him. Chaos was not going to let that energy go without a fight.
So began the dance; Sonic would pull, and Chaos would fight, and Sonic would evade the assault, and so on. As Sonic exploited the connection, he felt rage and cold, stabbing sorrow attached to the energy, and it hurt more than Sonic would have thought.
Please stop this. Sonic caught himself thinking, I’m right here now...and so are the Chao!
Unfortunately, this distracted Sonic enough for an attack to slip through. As pain lanced throughout his body, Sonic realized he would not be able to keep this up for much longer.
Alright. It’s now or Never, Sonic thought as he began to drag energy from Chaos as fast as he could. Then Chaos rose up, and roared—and Sonic barely had time to brace himself as blinding light and waves of water hit him one after another, unrelenting.
Now or Never…!
Sonic pushed up, forcing himself through the attack, soaring straight at Chaos at incredible speeds, while forcing a stream of Chaos energy into a crackling shield around him—

The Shield exploded when Sonic made contact with Chaos, and Sonic found himself severed from the Emeralds, but hey! So was Chaos, so hey, that’s great, oh, and there’s the pavement coming up to meet him—

Crack. Sonic felt something break as he hit the asphalt. A few feet away, Sonic heard a watery slap to see Chaos zero, for some reason achingly familiar, pushing himself off the ground.

Time to reason with Chaos itself, Sonic thought. He pushed himself up, staggering over to Chaos, when he felt the last of his Super form leave him, and oh.
Sonic stood suspended for a few agonizing seconds before his knees hit the ground and he collapsed. He was suddenly, painfully aware that his shoulder was broken.
Squinting through the pain, Sonic looked up to see Chaos crawling towards him like its life depended on it. Sonic watched, transfixed, as the water that comprised its body shifted like the turns in the river, ensuring he’d never stay above the water for long its weight on its powerful limbs powerful like the current, bashing him against every rock and scraping him against the stony bottom and concern in its eyes like you haven’t seen for so long—

Sonic was suddenly aware that he had backed up, crawling away from Chaos, as his shoulder had helpfully reminded him when he’d tried to use it for such a purpose. Sonic gasped in pain, but looked back up, to see that Chaos had curled up into a ball.

Against all better judgement, Sonic began crawling towards Chaos, the itch in his heart urging him on. Dimly he was aware of Tikal appearing behind him.
Crawling forward… Then there are the Chao, coming out of the nooks and crannies, and Sonic remembers his uncanny ability to know what they’re talking about.
Crawling forward… The itch in his heart, making it pound like never before, relief and anger and the regret from having been alone for so long…

He had reached Chaos, and embraced him, wrapping his watery arms around him, burying his head against Chaos’ forehead, not giving a damn if it was wet…
...and slowly, slowly, Sonic began to rub circles into Chaos’ thumb.

But it was too late. Sonic knew that Chaos couldn’t feel him. Sonic felt the semi-solid water that comprised Chaos start to weaken, and then Chaos melted in his arms, turning into water that slipped off the highway and joined the mass of water below. Sonic watched it go, feeling numb.

“Is he gone? Like, forever?” Sonic asked without turning around.
“No,” Tikal answered, “But reaching him is going to be dangerous, tiresome, and tedious. I don’t even know where he is at this point.”
“That’s alright,” Sonic whispered, “I’ve got this strange ambition to see this through.”
Sonic carefully leaned back. “Hey Tikal.”
“Is it possible for you to stick around? Like… Can we bring you back or somethin’?”
Sonic heard a sniffle. He turned around to see that Tikal was looking at him with a look of sadness, longing, love, and… pride? She was also silently crying, which Sonic didn’t know that ghosts could do.
“I… don’t know if you can bring me back,” she said, “but you best believe I’m gonna stick around to see this through, whatever ‘through’ turns out being.”
“Fantastic..” Sonic said, fully lying down, “Happy to have ya back again, Tikal…”

And Sonic slipped into unconsciousness, but with inexplicable feelings of love, determination, and curiosity in his heart, and a thought in his head.

The sun rose and sank. The wind blew and ceased. The earth shifted and settled. And the love between a parent and child can move time.

These things are constants.