Splinter reached hesitantly reached for his phone, hating himself for what he had to do now. But, there was no other way. It had to be done. He loved his sons too much to keep them with him, where they would surely be destroyed much sooner than Splinter would allow. And so, here he was, calling in one last favor from an old friend, even after he had been mutated. Nicholas Fury's contact information appeared on the screen, and Splinter pressed talk. After four rings, the man picked up.

"Hello, Fury here?"

"Hello, old friend. Listen, I-" He was cut off as Fury recognized who was calling him at this ungodly hour of four-thirty in the morning.

Yoshi?! Is that you?!"

"Yes. Now, I have a large favor to ask of you." He says, not able to keep the heavyness out of his voice.

"What kind of large favor, Yoshi?" Fury asks, understandably wary. Splinter would be, too, if an old friend called him in the wee hours of the morning, and asked a large favor.

"An old enemy of mine has discovered my whereabouts, much sooner than I could have anticipated. And I know you don't normally do this...but...would you watch over my sons? I can't bear to lose them. No matter what happens to me, they must live on. Please, Fury. I have no other options." A gasp from the other end. Again, understandable. Splinter could just see Fury rubbing the bridge of his nose as he sat, maybe at a table, maybe in bed. It wasn't possible to tell.

"Of course, Yoshi. But you do realize that I could send a team in after this man, take care of him for you. or...I could that team to your location, for protection." despite everything happening, everything that's about to happen, Splinter smiles. He had know Fury would put out that request, but those words fell upon deaf ears. He had considered, and no. splinter didn't need anyone to protect him, or fight his battles for him. So, as politely as possible, he declines Fury's kind offer.

"You sure, Yoshi?"

"Yes, I'm sure. Thanks for the generous offer, though." Splinter responds, still smiling. It drops, however, when he has to ask where he should drop off his kids.

"Oh, the apartment building on First and Fourth will be fine. I have agents in New York City. I'll give them a call, and have them pick them up. I appreciate the sacrifice you are making. One more thing; they'll need to be separated. Do you understand?" Of course he understood. For their safety, they wouldn't know each other until the time was right. It was the only way...

"Yes. Just, make sure that they find each other, when the time is right. Please." He asked. Final request. It was the best he could do for them now.

"Until we met again, then, Yoshi." Fury said. Splinter chocked back sobs, blinked back tears, and wiped his face before responding.

"Until we meet again, Fury." Without another word, the call was terminated. Quickly securing the amulets he had prepared with their names on them, in the colors that Yoshi thought suited each of them, around their tiny necks, he hugged them close for a few moments before picking up Leonardo and Raphael and placing them on his shoulders. Donatello and Michelangelo went on his hips. He left the Lair, and walked through the sewer system, wanting to make the most of his limited time left with them as he walked unhurriedly. He only emerged to cross the street when he arrived at the right place for the drop off. He was here in time to meet Fury's agent at the designated spot. He brought his sons down from his shoulders, and hugged them to him for the last time, tears running down his face. The children were sleepy, and it took only a few lullabies to get their eyes to droop, and finally, close in sleep. Splinter reluctantly broke free of the contact, and rose to shaky knees, to unsteady legs. His hand slowly reached into his hakama, and drew out the note, reviewing it swiftly before placing it in between two of his sons.

To whom it may concern,

Please do not be alarmed by my sons' appearance. They are very kind and gentle souls. Please care for them as best you can, if Fury decided to pair you with one or more of them. I know you wouldn't normally do something like this, and I cannot express my gratitude for your possible assistance in this matter enough to justify my feelings. I think that it would be wise to train them in the warrior's way. However, I will leave the decision up to Fury. I know you will help my sons become good and honest boys, and, hopefully, men one day, if fate throws one of my sons your way.

Hamato Splinter.

Satisfied, he hesitantly reachedfor the door. With a swift, yet firm knock, and he was gone, back to the tunnels he knew so well, after watching his sons being drawn into the apartment building by gloved hands. His heart broke as he heard the soft moaning that came from each of his sons as they were drawn into the dark home. He was so distracted with thoughts of his sons, and what would happen to them, that he never noticed the dark suited man, creeping along beside him, a leg out and reaching for him, until he tripped and fell to the floor. Ending the fall in a roll, he saw the shadowy figure.

"Where are the Kame, rat?" he hissed, voice deep, and laden with menace. Splinter smiled.

"Do you honestly think that I will tell you anything?"

"No. just checking." The man replied, and Splinter suddenly felt a sharp pain in-between his shoulder blades. He collapsed to the floor, the life already nearly depleted from his body. Through the red mist of death, Splinter saw his murderer step from the shadows, and activate a communicator on his wrist. However, Splinter was dead before he could hear what was said.

"The rat has been taken care of, master." He said, sounding genuinely pleased with himself.

"And what of the Kame?" An equally sinister and evil voice came from the other end of the line.

"Unknown as yet, master. The rat wouldn't tell me anything."

"Well, no matter. They won't last long without someone to take care of them, anyway." The second man replies, sounding genuinely amused at the presumed fate of the four turtle mutants. He wouldn't be seeing them for fifteen years.

Natasha Romanov wasn't expecting to find four baby turtles outside the drop point. She had quickly drawn them inside, two at a time, before anyone saw anything. She smiled despite herself as she looked at them, all asleep. A few of them were sucking their thumb, and they all snuggled against her chest. She blushed slightly, not used to having something, or someone, show affection to her. Her phone vibrated in her pocket, and she sent it to her head set, so she could still hold the four little terrapins and talk to whoever was calling. "Yes?" She said. Her usual response when she picked up.

"Fury wants a status report on the pickup, Agent Romanov." Agent Phil Coulson replied, not sounding annoyed, which meant he was.

"Pickup successful, Coulson." She said, not one to mince words.

"Good. Bring them in, please. We need to get to work on dispersal." Natasha rolled her eyes. Count on Coulson to treat the fate of four little guys like just a regular drop-off of packages.

"Glad to see you are so concerned about these four little...guys." Natasha said, not wanting to spoil the surprise. Not yet.

"Um-hm. Just return to base, and we'll figure it out from there." with that, Coulson hung up. Natasha ended the call on her end, too, and tried to get off the couch without waking the four little guys on her lap. One by one, she laid them out on the couch. None of them woke up, thankfully. She found a box big enough to transport the four little guys out to the car, at least. Carefully laying them inside before bracing herself, she picked it up.

Coulson didn't exactly approve of taking in four more little kids, much less having to raise them. He patiently waited for Natasha to arrive with the sons of Fury's friend. Just because he was going along with it doesn't mean he had to like it. After about fifteen minutes, a car pulled into the base, and Natasha Romanov emerged from the vehicle. Going to the second door, she opened it, reached in, and drew out a cardboard box. Coulson could hear her grunt in exertion as she came closer. Coulson motioned for an agent to assist Natasha, but she merely held onto the box tighter. She walked inside, and dumped the box as gently as possible onto the couch. She then stretched her sore arms, and sat down next to the box. Coulson came over and stood next to Natasha. "Rough time?" He asked, smirking. Romanov sent him a death glare before speaking through her pants. "You don't know the half of it." She growled. "You have no idea how heavy these guys are." She said, motioning toward the box. Coulson moved closer to it, and reached out to open it

"Just to warn you, they're not normal." Natasha said, now over her pants. Coulson raised an eyebrow, but didn't make any further comment as he eased the blankets surrounding the four bodies back. His breath caught at the sight that beheld him.

"Are you sure these are the" Coulson asked, momentarily losing his composure.

"Yep. They were at the right place, right time. Those are Hamato Yoshi's sons." Romanov said, eyes closed as she relaxed on the couch. She handed him a note, and Coulson quickly read it before looking in the box. Coulson smiled that small trademark smile of his as he gazed down at their sleeping forms. They were all wearing amulets of a different color. One blue, one red, one purple, and one orange. Blue seemed to be trying to envelope all if his brothers in his arms, and Orange was apparently returning the embrace. Purple and Red were sucking their thumbs. It was adorable. Coulson wished his phone had a camera. This was a great photo op. He found himself wanting to hold them. Before he could guess why or what he was doing, he silently and carefully scooped up the one wearing the orange amulet. He was the smallest of the four turtles, and Coulson shook his head at himself and chuckled as he rocked the little thing back and forth smoothly. He seemed so happy in Coulson's arms, probably because Orange thought that Coulson was his father, Hamato Yoshi, and Heaven known where that guy was. Coulson smiled as the little guy cooed softly in his sleep. Idly, Coulson checked the flip-side of the small amulet. The word Michelangelo was carved carefully into the wood. He leaned over, careful not to disturb anyone, and checked all the amulets on a hunch. Raphael was under the red amulet, purple was Donatello, and blue Leonardo. So, now the four had names. All they needed was caretakers/parents. Secretly, of course. Fury would probably charge the Avengers with these little guys. But that wouldn't stop Coulson from putting in a request to at least be close to this little one. Michelangelo, like the Renaissance artist. Come to think of it, all the names were after Renaissance artists. Funny, that was a bit of an odd theme to pick. But who was Phil Coulson to judge Yoshi on what he named his sons? He wondered of Yoshi had named them that night, when he had carved the names into the amulets. No, he decided. It had required too much thought to have been done on the spur of the moment. He motioned an agent over to follow him with the box after carefully putting Michelangelo back into the box.

He tapped on the door to Fury's office not three minutes later.

"Enter." Came Director Fury's voice from the other side of the door. Coulson entered, followed closely by the agent carrying the box containing the turtles.

"We got them, sir. Agent Romanov picked them up at the drop off point without a hitch." Coulson reported as he entered, leaving the other agent to put the box down and awkwardly back out of the room. Fury came out from behind his desk.

"Good. Wait...why are they in a box?" Fury asked, lifting the lid. He straightened after a few seconds; his version of looking startled. Coulson handed him the note, and he quickly read it. Fury nodded when he was done reading. "Good. Now, we've gotta lotta work to do."