Disclaimer- I don't own anything relating to the show or to the games.

Thanks so much for the support for this story guys! I really like this fic, and I'm glad you all do too! I'm not gonna yabber on too much here…so read on!

"C'mon Shads." Sonic shoveled hot and delicious scrambled eggs into his mouth. He spoke around the mushy goodness as he pointed his fork at his rival on the opposite couch. "At least try some! Tails wasn't the one who stuck ya in here!"

Shadow's eyes narrowed into slits as he stabbed the eggs on his plate, scraping his utensil intentionally against the glass underneath.

Tails' ears plastered themselves against his head at the terrible sound. He inwardly grumbled as he chewed his breakfast. He had slaved over the stove for all of them, and this was how he was appreciated? Though honestly, the kit couldn't have expected anything else. It was Shadow the stubborn-hog after all. And plus, Shadow hadn't actually said yes when he asked…

Knuckles, who had scarfed down his meal already, eyed his neighbor's. Shadow was missing out. The kid could make some mean eggs. "Hey, if you don't want-"

Shadow growled at him like a dog protecting its bone.

The echidna blinked. That hedgehog was not taking this whole hostage thing well. "…A simple no would've been enough."

Sonic rolled his eyes as he swallowed a bite. "Oh for the love of – Shadow!" The hero gestured to Eggman. The human was stabbing the eggs like they had wronged him as well, but a least he was reluctantly enjoying them. "Eggy's eating them, and he's in a worse situation than you. He hates being trapped, and he hates all of us!"

"There have never been truer words, cactus," the doctor huffed, silently loving how his egg had been seasoned.

"And you think my hatred for all of you is any less?" Shadow wanted no more of this. He wanted to leave, forget that all of this happened, and enjoy the eggs in peace. "I despise all of you."

Sonic chuckled. "If you wore pants, they would be on fire right now Shads." The fork in a certain hedgehog's hand snapped in half. "I mean, have you tried asking nicely for the thing to let you go?"

Amy ate the last of her breakfast, tilting her head a bit. "Do you really think that'll work?" Because if it did, she had to quickly prepare a speech so she could at least go freshen up.

Knuckles got more comfortable and gave Shadow his full attention. "There's only one way to find out." This should be good.

Believing that Sonic's suggestion might have some validity to it, Shadow took a deep breath and let his sharp facial features smoothen out. He raised his chin and gazed at the ceiling, even though the thing could be anywhere or everywhere. He parted his lips. "Dear…whoever is listening, can I please return to my home?"

Everyone actually expected something to happen, but nothing did.

Sonic couldn't hold in his snort. "Gotta try harder."

Shadow's grip increased on his plate. "Pretty please?" His reputation just burst into flames. He ignored the snickers to the best of his ability.

"Go that extra mile, Shads! What's the last thing you put on a milkshake?"

The striped hedgehog was surprised that his teeth didn't shatter as he ground them together. "With a cherry on top?" No response, and he broke his plate as well. Eggs sloshed onto his lap and the floor. The room was silent as Shadow stiffly picked up pieces of his breakfast and placed them back on the two halves of the plate. He stood up and stomped into the kitchen.

Worried about the fate of the many fragile items in the other room, Tails hopped to his feet. "Is uh…everyone done?" There were multiple nods, and the kit hurriedly gathered the others' dishes and scampered into the kitchen.

Amy saw that Sonic was occupied laughing at Tails' back, and she took her chance. The pinkette slid over and leaned against the suddenly rigid hero's arm. She locked her elbow with his. "Watching the show would be so much better with us like this, don't you think?"

The girl then blinked when her fingers were gripping nothing but air. Surprised jade orbs drifted over to where Sonic had taken Shadow's seat. The azure speedster uneasily chuckled. "Hey Eggster, crazy weather we're havin' today, yeah?" he asked, pointedly ignoring the 'You will be mine' coming from a pouting pinkette.

"Don't drag me into your irritating antics!" Eggman scowled, even though he had already been dragged and trapped. "I'm already stuck in here with you, I want no part in helping you deal with your emotions!"

"The only emotion I'm dealing with is terror," Sonic mumbled with huff.

Knuckles scoffed. "You're a real gentleman, you know that?"

"Yes, I am! I just gave Amy the whole couch! If that's not chivalry, I don't know what is!"

It was then Tails and Shadow reentered the room, them both staring at Sonic. One was confused while the other was severely irked. Tails glanced at a down-crested Amy and drew the conclusion that Sonic must've hightailed it. Not caring that much about the seating arrangement now that the magical storm was over, Tails palmed the remote the azure anthro had left and popped a squat.

Shadow gave his rival a look, and Sonic was surprised that he didn't burst into flame. The Ultimate Lifeform sat down on the other side of Amy and glared at the screen. His molten gaze dropped when a stress ball with a smiley face materialized in his lap. Without second thought, Shadow picked it up and squeezed rapidly, heavily breathing as if he'd explode any minute.

Amy suddenly feared for her life. She subtly scooted closer to Tails. "I think you should play it now, Tails."

The kit wholeheartedly agreed. "Yeah, let's try to get this over with as soon as possible." He pressed play, and the episode began.

A bright canyon faded into view, the screen showing off the bright blue sky before dipping down between the towering cliffs. Eggman in his hovercraft then sped into view, avoiding the shear walls.

"Wait…" Tails paused it. "Hadn't we seen that before? It was in the trailer, right?"

"Sure is bud," Sonic answered as he stretched, slightly brushing Eggman in the process. The doctor's eye twitched in annoyance. Sonic scratched his full stomach. "So…the trailer was just a shorter version of this…or…?"

"Well maybe if we play it, we'll figure that out," Knuckles advised, nodding over to the kit.

Sonic appeared as well, feet thudding against the rocky ground as he gave chase. "You can't lose me Egghead!"

Eggman punched his dashboard in frustration. "Eggman! You know my name is Dr. Eggman! You do that on purpose."

The azure hero had a cheeky grin on his face. "Do what, Egghead?"

Amy pointed at the screen in excitement. "Ooo! That's new!"

Eggman's expression darkened further, if that was even possible. "Yes, and I'm so glad to see that the rodent is still as irritating as he is now."

"Some things never change, Egghead." Sonic nudged the doctor with his elbow and removed it before he got smacked. "For example, you're still as bald as ever!"

Eggman's twitch became more prominent.

Sonic continued to run after the human through the canyon up until the point the hedgehog had to slide to a stop to avoid tumbling off an unexpected cliff. "Who-o-a!" he shouted as his arms waved about; he took a step back after regaining his balance, looking relieved.

Both Shadow and Eggman imagined him taking a dive, and their moods temporarily rose.

The screen zoomed out to show a huge hole with lava at the bottom before focusing on a floating Eggman. "It all ends here…old friend. Prepare to be destroyed…by Burnbot!" He gestured over to a red and clawed robot standing at the lip of the cliff.

Knuckles furrowed his brow. Didn't they know the end of this already? Sonic was spin dashing this bot at the end of the trailer. Why in the hell were they watching this episode then? Couldn't they just skip-

His thoughts derailed when a sudden chill went down his spine. Glancing around, it seemed like he was the only one affected. Alright…the thing could read minds too. Noted. Please don't kill me. I have a precious rock to protect.

"So what…" Sonic smirked. "He's gonna burn me with flamethrowers or something?"

Eggman scratched his head, a bit flustered. "Flamethrower? Well…no…"

"Oh uh acid?" The hero began throwing out guesses. "Incendiary grenades!"

"No no no! The – claws!" The doctor gestured at Burnbot, who pinched its 'fingers' together. "He has claws! Very painful claws!"

Sonic clearly was entertained by this. "Then you should have called him Clawbot or The Lacerator or Pinch-a-tron 9000. But Burnbot? I mean, that's just false advertising!"

"I totally agree with him!" Sonic's brow furrowed. "Er…me? Anyway, what's with the name, Eggy? It doesn't make sense!"

"Don't ask me." Eggman's mustache flared. "Ask future me that apparently has lost one too many brain cells!"

"I don't know, Eggman." Knuckles leaned up to lock eyes with the man. "You keep saying that you get dumber, but I don't think you've changed at all. Denial much?"

If the human had his robots, he would've showed that echidna what for. As things were however, he bit his tongue before got covered with purple bruises.

Eggman was certainly not amused. "I name the robots, Sonic!" he growled, "Burnbot attack!"

Burnbot jumped down to a lower ledge and sped towards Sonic. Said hedgehog – not intimidated in the slightest – ran in the opposite direction, keeping directly across from Burnbot as they slowly spiraled deeper into the crater. Tails flew over the scene in his blue plane.

Sonic and Tails shared excited looks. The kit then sobered a bit. Was the little fight he and Sonic had in this episode? If so, oh boy…

"Blue Leader, this is Yellow Sky," the kit spoke into his headset, "I have eyes on Burnbot. He's on the move, over!"

"Obviously," Shadow muttered, still squeezing the stress ball.

"Thanks, Tails!" Sonic said into a communicator on his wrist. "Initiate speeding swing surprise!"

The pilot immediately dove into the canyon, passing Eggman and making him spin. Tails activated his energy beam – a certain kit on a couch was enraptured again by the sight of the new tool – as Sonic and Burnbot leap at each other. Time slowed down as the plane ducked lower, the hedgehog catching the glowing rope. Sonic swung around behind the robot and kicked it into the far wall, Burnbot falling to the ground afterwards.

All in a day's work, Sonic smugly thought.

Eggman lowered himself and yelled at his creation. "Get up get up get UP!"

Amy watched as Burnbot got to its feet. It kinda looked familiar. "Shadow…doesn't that sorta look like Omeg-"

"Don't talk to me."

She didn't want to mess with the bull. "Got it."

Burnbot looked up, seeing Tails fly by. It raised an arm and shot it right at the plane's wing, severely damaging it. The aircraft corkscrewed as a concerned Sonic watched on. He shouted into his communicator, "Bail, Tails! Bail!" The kit pulled the eject lever, but it broke off in his hand. Sonic stepped forwards to help, but Burnbot stood in his way.

"Outta the way, chrome dome!" Sonic yelled, his good mood gone. Tails was about to freaking crash and that hunk of junk had the nerve to just-!

"It can't hear you, faker."

"Hush it, Shads! Play with your toy!"

Shadow snarled, but did it anyway. Not because he was told to, oh hell no, but because it kept him from acting out and potentially ticking the thing off again.

Sonic sidestepped an attack before spin dashing a large loose rock on a cliff above Burnbot. It crashed down on the bot, keeping it from moving. Sonic jumped up high out of the crater just in time to see Tails crash in the distance. "Tails! No!" He gazed on in horror before racing over.

"Wow, that's…" Tails didn't know what to say. He possibly got injured in what…within three minutes of starting the episode? Would this happen often?

Amy was concerned. There was no way that Tails could walk away from that. "You show up later though, remember? So…you can't be that hurt, right?"

Knuckles didn't want to be a pessimist, but… "It could be out of order," he said lowly.

"It isn't because Amy's right." Sonic pipped up with a determined look on his face. "Tails'll make it through! He's tough as nails! It'll take more than a plane crash to take him out!"

Tails smiled at his bro's words. "Yeah! I've been through worse, and I'm still here!"

The echidna grinned. "You gotta be tough if you hang around Sonic all day. Wherever he goes, danger – and the occasional world-ending apocalypse – follows."

Now that the atmosphere was not as tense, the show played on.

"We'll be back, Sonic!" Eggman activated a magnet in his hovercraft. He lifted Burnbot out from under the massive rock, grunting, "Oof, you are heavy. Seriously, Burnbot, you could stand to burn a few calories."

Sonic scoffed at that pun. "You try-hard."

Knuckles wasn't so positive. "So you're basically just going to go, after potentially injuring or killing Tails?" he asked incredulously.

"What?" Eggman shrugged. "You expect me to care about the things my robots destroy?" He had nowhere enough compassion stored inside him to complete that feat.

The echidna deadpanned at him before raising a brow. "So you admit that you didn't really change."

Eggman stiffened. "I said no such thing! I just-"

"Nope, you just played yourself." Sonic moved his fingers in a 'keep going' motion. "Keep it rollin, lil bro."

Sonic pulled a wounded Tails out of the wreckage and laid him gently on the ground. He rested his ear against the kit's chest and sighed in relief at sound of the other's heartbeat.

"Keep resting, pal. I'll get you home." Sonic stood back up with Tails in his arms. "I promise I'll never let anything like this happen to you again." The hedgehog walked off-screen.

Shadow leaned back into the couch, relaxing into the cushion. He was throwing his ball up and down now. "That is the most serious I've ever seen you, hedgehog. It's a nice change from how you are now."

Sonic ignored that jab. "Well yeah! Tails isn't in the best shape…but I wonder what I mean by that?"

Tails thought about the name of the episode, and a lightbulb went off. "You…aren't going to replace me, are you?"

"'Course not! No one can replace my baby brother!"

Tails grumbled about not being a baby anymore as he played the show.

The scene changed, and a couple of hanging pictures were shown. One was the two brothers fishing, and the other was them playing video games.

"Where are those hanging?" Amy questioned as she glanced around at the surrounding walls, "Because your walls look nothing like that."

Tails shrugged. "Maybe we moved? I haven't seen the canyon from earlier before."

A bandaged Tails was laying on a green couch. After a second, he blinked his eyes open and sat up, rubbing his wrappings. "Sonic?" His voice was raspy.

The azure hedgehog stepped closer to him. "Hey, buddy! How ya feelin'?"

"Wherever you moved to…" Knuckles snorted. "You sure downgraded."

"Hey, at least we have air conditioning unlike a certain hermit I know!" Sonic retorted and flinched when the guardian flicked him on his arm.

"I'm great." Tails stood up. "Ready to get back into action!"

Sonic suddenly looked uncomfortable. "Yeah, uh…about that." He meekly scratched his head. "Um…I've got some great news! You my friend, are taking early retirement!"

Tails slouched, feeling betrayed. "Yeah…I'm totally being replaced…"

Sonic frowned at the kit. "I would never do that! We stick by each other through thick and thin!" The hero then pursed his lips, staring at the screen. "What in the heck am I thinking?"

"You're not." Knuckles couldn't see this happening either. Those two were basically inseparable. "You're acting on impulse, which wouldn't be the first time…"

"I mean, he did get hurt pretty bad." Amy played with one of her hanging quills. "Maybe you really don't want to see Tails in pain again? It makes sense."

It didn't matter if it did, Sonic and Tails weren't happy about this development.

"Early retirement?" Tails repeated, confused.

"Yeah! You're gonna be able to play lots of golf and spend time with the grandkids!"

"I don't have grandkids!" The fox argued.

Sonic pointed at him. "Well, now's your chance to get some!"

Knuckles stared at Sonic in disbelief. "Wow Sonic…did you just…"

"Sonic!" Amy cried out, cheeks aflame. "He's just eight!" Sure, she didn't know a lot about that, but she knew enough!

The hero's face was flushed as well. He had just told his brother to make kids so they could make kids. "He's older there though!" His voice had risen an octave.

"Still!" The pinkette glanced over at the fox, who looked completely lost.

"What are you guys talking about?"

No one was willing to answer until:

"Hot dogs and donuts."

Everyone – including Eggman – whipped their heads in Shadow's direction, flabbergasted.

Tails still didn't understand. Why was everyone looking at Shadow like he had killed someone? "What-"

"You'll understand when you're older," Sonic hastily stated. Amy took the remote from the kit's hands and the show went on.

"Trust me, it's for the best." Sonic hugged the younger boy for a second before letting go. "I'll see ya around, pal." He then ran off.

"Wait…" Tails blinked. "What just happened?"

"That's what I'm asking!" Tails exclaimed, his suspicious gaze sweeping the room.

"Nothing bro!" Sonic laughed nervously. "Just enjoy the show!"

Sonic opened the door he had closed behind him and said, "I fired you." He disappeared again.

"Okay, just checking," Tails quietly muttered.

"Well that was rude," Amy said if not just to change the subject.

Tails nodded. "You can say that again…"

Sonic was now walking on a sandy beach, somber. "Don't look at me like that. I did what I had to do." He was talking to a stack of flyers advertising the need for a new sidekick. "And now we're going to make sure Tails stays retired." He hung on paper on a nearby tree.

Eggman scoffed at that. "So you're basically replacing your fox friend so another person could get hurt instead of him? And you call me the bad guy."

Sonic was too busy glaring at a blasé Shadow to respond properly.

An island was now shown with a white structure standing tall and proud in the middle of it. "Sidekick tryouts." Eggman was sitting inside the shiny building. "All qualified candidates welcome. Best candidate gets the job. Resume and references required." He set the paper down and pointed to it. "Can you believe this?"

Orbot held up a finger. "A resume and references aren't unreasonable, sir."

"Especially in this job market!" Cubot chirped.

Orbot and Cubot? Eggman had scrapped those useless machines a long time ago! They had gotten on his nerves, and the doctor could only handle so much aggravation in one lifetime.

Eggman slammed his fist down and threw the crumpled-up flyer at the frightened bots. "What fool would want to be Sonic's sidekick? Spending every day with him…enjoying his friendship and respect…"

Tails frowned up at that. "I…don't know if you're insulting me or just being weirdly jealous…"

"I'm insulting you!" Eggman yelled indignantly while Sonic chuckled at the same time. "Totally jealous."

"Not me, that's for sure!" The doctor stroked his chin. "Unless…" There was a zoom in on his face before it panned down. Eggman fixed it, growling, "Lousy security camera!"

This scene switched to the shack from earlier. There was a line forming in front of it, containing several people including Amy and Knuckles.

Amy wiggled happily in her seat at her appearance, loving the new outfit she had adorned.

"You sure it's not steroids?" Sonic asked his echidna neighbor.

"No!" Knuckles adamantly opposed, fists clenching. "I told you, it's because I'm probably working out! Or had a growth spurt or-"

"Or had one too many protein shakes with a little special ingredient?" The hedgehog finished haughtily. He almost regretted his words when the guardian punched him in the arm not-so-gently. Almost.

Sonic was sitting at a desk with a clipboard and a pencil. Amy was standing in front of him, smiling. "I'm Amy Rose, and I'll be auditioning for the job of sidekick."

Tails' namesakes quivered nervously. Sonic better not replace him with her. Pals before gals!

Sonic sighed. "Amy, I know who you are."

The pinkette perked up. "Great! Because I'm fine with nepotism. Oh, and under special skills, you can add juggling and singing." She began juggling three colorful balls. "Oh when the Saints, go marching in! Ba ba da da ba ba!"

Amy couldn't process what she just saw. Her mouth was hanging open. "What…? Why did I…?"

Sonic coughed behind his fist to mask his laugh. "Guess that's what we saw in the trailer."

"But why would I do that?! It was so unattractive!" she squealed. Tails leaned a bit away from her, and Shadow squeezed his stress reliever harder. "And my voice! Sonic, I can sing way better than that!"

The hero did a calm down motion with his hand. "I'll take your word for it!"

"Well, it seems like Amy becomes crazier later on, and I didn't think that was possible." Knuckles glanced over at the pinkette and grunted. "No offense."

Amy had to keep herself from materializing another piko and hammering the echidna with it. She wasn't crazy, just incessantly determined.

Sonic was not entertained. "Next!"

A beaver with a red bow tie stood in front of the hero now. "My greatest weakness? Actually, it is my incredible cowardice."

Two down… Tails thought.

Amy was back on screen.

"What? Did you cut people, Amy?" The kit peered at her.

"I wouldn't!"

"I wouldn't be surprised if she did, given who she's trying to impress…"

Knuckles hastily ducked the hammer hurled at him.

Sonic was on his feet beside her as she gushed. "Oh improv? I love improv!" Her accent drastically changed. "I'm a crazy pizza man! Who juggles and sings!" She juggled again, singing, "Oh when the Saints go marching in!" Sonic exasperatedly turned her around and pushed her out.

Amy's embarrassed blush reached her ears, but her glare kept the others from saying anything else.

Knuckles was leaning against the desk with the clipboard and pencil in his hands. "I think…that you'd be a great sidekick for me."

"No, Knuckles." Sonic deadpanned. "I'm looking for someone to be my sidekick."

"We'd have to change your name, though," the echidna continued as if the hedgehog hadn't spoken, "I'm thinking…Knuckles Junior." Sonic grabbed the clipboard and pencil, crossing something out on the paper.

"Knuckles…Junior?" Knuckles repeated it like it was foreign language. The guardian crossed his arms and frowned. "Alright Sonic, it might not be steroids, but I have to be taking some kind of drug."

"Or maybe you're just uh…" Sonic gave up. "I got nothin'."

A hooded figure stepped up to the desk – like it wasn't obvious who was under there – and Sonic regarded the mystery person. "Okay…last question. What would you do in a no-win situation?"

In a fake deep voice, the figure responded, "If I'm with you, there's no such thing as a 'no-win situation.'"

Sonic smirked over at Tails. "I taught you well!"

Tails chuckled, content now that it seemed that future Sonic would choose him. "I learned from the best!"

"Huh." Sonic looked impressed. "You really get it, new guy."

The person nodded. "I do get it. But I'm not a new guy. In reality, I am none other than…" They attempted to pull the hood off, but it somehow got stuck, them falling down in the process.

Sonic stood up and frowned at who was eventually revealed. "Tails? You cannot be my sidekick!"

And…Tails' prediction was wrong.

The fox held up the flyer from before. "All qualified candidates welcome. Best candidate gets the job." Tails gestured to himself. "I'm a lock! Unless there's something you're not telling me…"

"Fine!" Sonic put a hand on his hip. "But get ready for the tryout of your life!"

Sonic explosively sighed. "Am I always this stubborn?"

"Yes," Shadow answered.

"Absolutely," Eggman added.

The speedster rolled his eyes. He knew better than to ask that question with those two in the room. "Yeah, like you two have any room to complain about my stubbornness."

Shadow tisked. "You asked."

"Hello," a new yet familiar voice greeted.

Sonic and Tails whirled around. "Eggman!" the latter shouted out in surprise.

"What are you doing here?" The hedgehog got into a fighting stance.

"What am I doing there?" The human was lost as he gazed at the screen, but then all the pieces came together. He ran his hands down his face, frustrated beyond belief. Out all of the possible schemes-!

"My name is Dr. Eggman, and I'm here about the sidekick position." He held up a resume.

Sonic barked out a laugh. "You can't be serious, Eggy!"

"I wish I wasn't." Eggman groaned. He didn't think it was possible to despise his future self this much.

"Whatever you're trying to do won't work though!" Amy shook her head. "Because Sonic'll never work with you!"

"And you think that I want to work with him?" The doctor scrunched his nose in distaste. "I wouldn't willingly spend more time with the rat than I have to!"

"The show says otherwise!" Sonic jeered, and Eggman counted down from thirty in his mind to keep his anger in check. "But I agree with what Ames said, it'll never work!"

Sonic was more than a little confused. "Wha…but you're my arch-nemesis!"


"That's true," Eggman concurred, "But I could be a valuable asset to your organization. For example, I'm a doctor. Not a real doctor, a PhD, but still!"

Sonic wasn't budging. "You can't be my sidekick."

The human thrusted the flyer into his face. "All qualified candidates welcome?"

"Okay…fine." Sonic glanced between the man and fox. "You both can move on to Round Two, but neither one of you is going to be my sidekick."

Sonic's lips curved downwards as he tapped his foot. "Why am I even givin' him a chance? I would've just kicked 'im out and called it a day!"

"Granted, you'd never try to replace me in the first place…" Tails uttered.

"Like, have we all gone crazy or somethin'?"

The fox shook his head. "I'm the only one who hasn't changed! Well…" Sapphire orbs drifted over to a dispassionate striped hedgie. "That we know so far."

Shadow was marginally glad that he hadn't shown up yet. If his future self turned out to be outrageous, he was going to do something he'd regret. Especially if he found out the cause was someone in this room.

"There's no way of knowing now…" Amy fingered a loose thread on her pajamas. "I say that the show will clue us in! You know, eventually…"

"I don't want to watch any more of this!" Eggman complained. Future or not, this was borderline torture! The man then blinked when a smiley face stress ball appeared in his lap as well. It was impressive. All of his hate for his arch-rival had transferred to the thing in a few short seconds.

"Why? We get to change it if we know what's comin'!" Sonic grabbed the toy and tossed it up and down.

Eggman didn't respond to him. The last thing he ever wanted to do was agree with the rodent.

"Who else is there?" Tails inquired.

The beaver's head popped up in the doorway, holding up a card. "Actually, do you validate parking?"

"Congratulations!" Sonic pointed at him. "You're the third candidate!"

The beaver didn't look too ecstatic. "Actually…"

The scene changed to a jungle setting, and the small group was standing on the edge of a cliff.

"Alright, being my sidekick is no easy task," Sonic began to explain, "This competition will test your strength, stamina, and endurance." The screen panned to show Tails, Eggman, and the beaver on hoverboards.

"Whoa, is that extreme gear?" At least Sonic hadn't forgotten how to make things fun in the future.

"Maybe?" Knuckles squinted, noting some differences. "They're more crude models, if anything."

"The winner will be whoever makes it-"

"Actually." The beaver interjected, gazing at him. "It's 'whomever'."

"Okay…" Tails breathed out. "Who else is tired of him?"

Everyone raised their hands.

Sonic shook the interruption off before gesturing at another cliff in the distance with a red flag on top. "The winner will be whomever makes it through all the unimaginable hardships and brings me the red flag I planted atop the incredibly dangerous, but inaccurately named, Mount Safety."


Even Shadow couldn't hold in his amused snort when the on-screen Eggman pushed the beaver off the cliff.

He screamed on the way down, flailing his arms. Tails and Eggman followed a moment later, beginning their race through the jungle. Sonic ran off to watch from a distance.

Racing on trunks and vines, the decorations on the sides of the doctor's board detached, blades popping out of them and spinning. They headed right for Tails.

"There's the doctor we know." Knuckles observed as the kit crashed into the beaver, the buck-toothed racer falling into the jungle below. "Always throwing in something out of left field."

"Yeah." Sonic patted the man on his shirtless shoulder. "I was scared for a second there! That you actually wanted my friendship and respect."

"Dream on, rodent."

"Dream? More like a nightmare."

"Actually!" The beaver called beneath tree leaves. "I'm okay!"

The two bladed spheres of death continued their chase until Tails put on his brakes, causing them to slam into each other get off his trail. Tails then slid to a stop in a small clearing, where Sonic and his plane were waiting.

The hedgehog folded his arms. "What's going on here?"

"Nothing I can't handle!" Tails replied cockily.

"Ding ding! Right answer!" Sonic gave Tails a thumb's up even though he didn't understand why future him was clueless. Was he blind and deaf?

Tails jumped into his plane and took off. Eggman was right on his tail in his circular hovercraft. Sonic watched them go with a subtle frown before giving chase.

The beaver was left by himself. "Actually, I'm just going to lie down in the fetal position and weep." He did just that while sucking his thumb.

Knuckles glared at the TV. "Why in the hell does he keep getting showed off? Isn't this supposed to be about us? What's the deal with him?"

Amy shared his sentiments. He was getting more screen time than her! "He probably becomes more important in later episodes." The echidna just huffed. That was probably it.

Up in the air, Tails shouted, "Give up Eggman! This job is rightfully mine!"

"I'm not here to be Sonic's sidekick, you nincompoop!" Eggman argued, "I'm here to get rid of you both once and for all!"

"And you couldn't do that some other way?!" The doctor really wanted to reach through the screen and slap himself one good time.

The human activated the magnet he had used before, picking up Burnbot from the jungle floor. Sonic, who hadn't expected this, increased his speed hoping to catch up. Now airborne, Burnbot extended his sharp claws, wanting to hit Tails' aircraft. The kit skillfully dodged a few times, but one lucky hit sent him spiraling. Sonic sped up even more at the sight of his brother in danger again.

However, the hero almost lost control when he slid on ice covering a frozen lake.

"Ice? Oh man…" Sonic knew that if there was ice, there was water. He had a real bad feeling that he was going to take a dip sometime soon. He seriously should learn how to swim…

Eggman was stroking his 'stache, humming to himself. Maybe this plan wasn't so bad. He was using the rat's worst fear against him. True, the way his future self got to this point was rather unorthodox, but he didn't have the need to physically harm the human on the television anymore.

Shadow knew that this was tense or whatever, but he couldn't keep quiet about his. "Weren't you all in a jungle? Why in the world is there a damn frozen lake right at the edge of it?"

"I uh er…" Tails was thrown out of the moment by the striped one's question. It was a bit weird. "My mind's blank."

Amy frowned up. "Can't we figure that out after they get out of trouble?"

Shadow's gaze sharpened. "Remember who you're talking to, Rose."

"Remember who you're talking to, Shadow!"

At the appearance of a specific hammer, the Ultimate Lifeform went back to his stress relief.

Tails' plane was stuck halfway in the broken ice. "Tails!" Sonic called as he clumsily closed the distance between him and the fox.

The kit wiggled in his seat, turning the controls. "Sonic! I'm stuck!" Ice shattered more, and the plane sunk deeper.

From above, Burnbot morphed its claws into sawblades and launched one at the precarious surface. The aircraft was going to go under any second now. Movements quick, Sonic launched himself at the plane and grasped the kid's arms, pulling with all his might.

He freed Tails just as the ice gave way. Sonic jumped away from any cracking ice, him and his brother bouncing a bit upon landing.

Tails was relieved that they escaped, but he steeled himself for what's to come. This had to be the argument scene between him and Sonic.

The azure hero stood up, looking ashamed. "Tails…" He sighed. "I didn't really wanna fire you. I was just trying to protect you."

"You should know, other me, that I'm a danger magnet! And I'm sure I've rubbed off on Tails so much that he's chargin' up too!"

Tails gaped at Sonic. "That has to be the most scientific thing I've ever heard you say!"

The hedgehog mock-bowed. "Thank you. I try."

The kit cocked his head at his brother. Sonic didn't seem too bothered by this…then he shouldn't be either. They were too close for something as small as this to rock their friendship.

"How? By putting me in more danger?"

"The plan had holes!"

"Yeah, a lot, actually." Knuckles gave Sonic a pointed look. "More than usual."

The hero waved him off. "I'll make sure this doesn't happen, no worries!"

Tails then smiled, not too angry after all, and Sonic helped him up.

"Oh Sonic!" Eggman was suddenly there, too close. "I have one last surprise for you. I took your advice! Burnbot can burn things!"

"See faker?" Shadow rose an eye ridge. "This is a sign that you talk too damn much. Shut up from time to time."

Sonic rolled his eyes, spinning the small yet hefty ball on his finger. "I'll be quiet the day you crack a smile. Deal?" Shadow just glared, and the blue speedster fired a pretend gun at him. Checkmate.

Burnbot launched two fireballs from its body, creating a ring of fire around the duo that melted the ice. Tails flew because of his namesakes, but Sonic slid into the water and thrashed.

"I can't swim!" the hedgehog shouted in distress.

Tails lowered himself down and grabbed the hedgehog's hand and tugged; it wasn't enough. "You're waterlogged! I can't lift you!"

"Don't worry about me!" Sonic released his hold on the kit, but Tails held on tighter. "Get out of here!"

Amy's brow furrowed in worry. Not just because of the current situation, but also because the future danger too. Well, the future's future danger. This was their first legit episode, and all of this was happening! Would she also-

The pinkette blinked when a sudden thought came to her. "Where are Knuckles and me during this? We should be helping out!"

"Your guess is as good as mine," Knuckles replied, wondering that too.

Tails shook his head. "That's not how sidekicks do!" He pulled Sonic again, but he was dragged underwater with the hedgie. They were submerged for a moment, Sonic struggling all the while, until Tails twirled his namesakes and used them as propellers.

Tails flew them out of the water and into the air. He let go of Sonic, and the azure hero spun in Burnbot's direction, slamming into it. Ice cracked under the robot's feet, and it instantly sunk.

Sonic was caught by the yellow anthro after he bounced away. The flying pair smiled at each other as they headed back into the jungle.

Sonic stretched out a bit, a victorious grin splitting his face in half. "Well at least that didn't change." He focused on the doctor, who suddenly wished for his smiley ball back. Along with his win, Sonic had taken that away from him too. "I can still beat you anytime, anywhere Eggman!"

"We," Tails corrected.

"That's what I said."

"I'll be back!" Eggman shook a fist at their retreating backs. "With a new robot! Who has an accurate name!" He began to fly off. "And super laser eyes! And he'll feed me ham! Evil ham."

Eggman inwardly groaned as Sonic laughed like he hadn't seen this already. The human had forgotten all about the ham bit. Just keep digging the hole deeper, why don't you…

There was a time skip. Sonic and Tails were sitting on a beach, gazing into the sunset.

"About this job…" Tails stated tentatively, "What are the hours like?"

Sonic pretended to think. "Well, it's seven days a week, but you get your own plane."

Tails smiled.

"Aw!" Amy cooed before giving her neighbor a hug. "That's adorable!"

Tails weakly wiggled around in her hold, embarrassed. "Stop…"

The scene switched to the shack from earlier, and Amy was insistently ringing a bell on the porch. "Lemme in!" she exclaimed, "I demand a call-back!"

Amy released Tails at the sight of her crazy self on screen. Her ears drooped. "Oh no…"

Knuckles dragged his feet behind her, looking depressed. Amy saw him and asked, "Knuckles! What's wrong?"

"I don't even want to know." The echidna sighed out.

Knuckles heavily exhaled. "Knuckles Junior isn't working out."

"Oh…" Amy's expression lit up. "So you're saying you need a…"

"Don't do it…!"

Amy ran after the echidna, her accent changing. "I'm a crazy pizza man! Who juggles and sings! Oh when the Saints, go marching in!"

The pinkette covered her face in shame. "She did it…"


Knuckles jumped to his feet as the TV faded to black, waving his arms in the air. "That wasn't even necessary! What in the heck is wrong with me?" He looked over at Amy. "With us?!"

"Calm down, Knux!" Sonic snickered as he pulled the irate echidna back down, ignoring the heated stare he received. "Why so mad? I think it's funny!" The glare increased in intensity. "And well, I guess it's a 'Stay tuned, and you see!' kinda deal, yeah?"

"I hope so!" Amy pipped up. "Because juggling? I couldn't have picked up any other hobby?!"

"I mean…isn't juggling really hard? You have a talent!" Tails tried to cheer the girl up. He didn't know if it worked, for she just puffed and grumbled to herself. Well, at least he made an attempt.

Innocent blue orbs then drifted to the hedgehog on the other side of Amy. Tails was reminded of what he said earlier. "Hey Shadow…" Said hedgie eventually focused on him, head slightly tilted in question. "What did you mean when you said hot dogs and donuts? Those don't really go together and I'm just curious-"

A ghost of a smirk grew on Shadow's muzzle. He'd jump through any window of opportunity to dance on Sonic's nerves. This was very apt payback. "I was talking about se-"

A smiley face stress ball was hurled right at his eye.

There it is guys, the first episode! How'd you like it? Reviews and constructive criticism are welcome!

That Speedhunter- Yeah, Metal would kinda be the odd one out here. I'll have him be a guest during his episode though, that's for sure!