Hey! I'm back! Sorry it's been 10 months since I updated. I would like to say I had a legitimate excuse, but I really don't. A bit of R.L. and partly because I decided I didn't really like my own story. But I re-read it recently and got a guest review from Guest reminding me that this story existed. I've also been working on a ton of other stories. Mainly for Ducktales 2017, so I neglected this one.
Warning: Multiple mentions of sextual assault and rape.
I do not own TMNT in any incarnation. I do not own L.H., Bishop or Stockman either, though I AM responsible for L.H.'s action in this story. [I'm sorry L.H. You're nice really.]
It felt like an age by the time we got to LC's lair. Leo paused at the door, hand hovering just above the handle.
"...You alright?" I found myself asking.
I saw him swallow, then said so levelly it must have been an act. "Of course. Now. Stop messing around. We need to go in."
I was about to snap at him that it wasn't ME messing around it was HIM, but stopped myself just in time. If Leo had to deal with this situation by pretending that I didn't know what I was doing, then that was his problem not mine, I told myself in what I thought was a pretty mature moment.
That didn't change the fact that the door wasn't going to open on its own. So after a few more seconds of us staring at it, I elbowed Leo aside and tried to slam open the door, but it was so heavy that I had to push it open which completely spoilt the dramatic effect.
"Whenever you're ready." Leo said, dryly.
I glared at him and just let the door go. "Alright then, Mr Genius, where're we starting?"
Leo turned and immediately shuddered as he saw the bed. "We need to discover what happened. So...I suggest we start with the kitchen."
I clapped my hands together and said. "Good idea, I'm starving." In an attempt to lighten the mood.
Leo turned and, fighting a smile, said. "We're not here to eat, shell-head! We're here to examine the water." And he strode of into the kitchen.
"Mama-mia." I muttered under my breath, but followed him anyway.
Leo had already got a glass and was running it under the tap. "This is the water that Donnie helped him to fix." He stated, darkly.
"Forget that." I said, sharply. "Does it taste like salt or not?"
Leo took a small sip. Then frowned and took another slightly bigger one. Then there was a pause and just at the point I was about to yell at him, he said, slowly. "No. It's not."
"-Taste it yourself." He passed the glass to me and I chugged the entire thing in one. Sure enough no salt.
"What the fuck!?" I said, in disbelief. "This is mad! So either Donnie's made the whole salt thing up-"
"-Which I doubt-"
"-Or we're missing something." There was a pause while we both scanned the kitchen. Then something on the floor caught my eye and I pounced on it and held it up towards the light to see it better. "Found it!"
I whipped round and waved the package in his face. "It's a salt package!"
"Anything in it?"
"Nah, I think it's empty, but hold on-" I carefully ripped the package in what was meant to be two, but actually ended up being about a third and two-thirds. "Taste that."
Leo made a face.
"If you're about to start on about it being unhygienic, can I just draw your attention to the fact we LIVE in a sewer? This is not going to kill us."
He considered my point, then shrugged - which I took to mean I had won - and licked the inside of it while I did the same. Now, people think that as turtles we are used to salt-water. That's bullshit. We can handle higher amounts of salt that people can - which is part the reason we can eat so much pizza - but salt-water still taste as yucky to us as it does to Casey and April.
Once rinse-out of the mouth later and we had at least one answer to our mystery. "So, I'm guessing L.C. was adding this salt to the water and then giving it to Donnie?" Leo checked.
I shrugged. "Yeah, I'd guess. But why the shell would he? It seems such a random stupid thing to do. And what's the point? I mean-" I paused, thinking about how to phrase this without seeming like a psychopath. Leo looked at me curiously and - giving up - I just said. "Look, his aim was to kill or drug Donnie then he's gonna be adding something way more serious that salt, right? But he didn't. Now, maybe he wouldn't want to kill Donnie if he was going to you know-"
"-Assault him." Leo said.
"-Exactly. Drug him makes more sense, surely? I know he was hit round the back of the head, but L.C. surely couldn't have counted on that for the rest of his life? Donnie'd be brain-dead before long if he carried on like that. So what's the point? And don't say there is no point-" I said, as Leo opened his beak. "This is L.C. we're talking about. He wouldn't do something for no reason."
"Well, let's think." Leo gingerly leaned against the kitchen-top and spoke slowly. "He definitely has an aversion to it. Which, psychologically speaking, I would say would mean it has unpleasant memories attached to it-"
"-Like being kidnapped and potentially raped, you mean?"
Leo glared, then sighed. "Yes. But there's gotta be something more than that. Let's think. Now, Donnie keeps insisting he can't drink - probably due to the salt. But why would he be SO opposed of it's just salt? We've just tried it and - it's not pleasant - but it's hardly horrifying..."
While Leo theorised aloud I left him to it and wondered out into L.C.'s living room/bed-room. I looked at the bed and steadied my nerves. The chains were still there, hanging limply like they hadn't been used for torture. There was dried blood on the bed. I knelt down level with the bed and studied it. Part of the mystery was that Donnie has definitely been assaulted somehow and going of L.C.'s comment we're assuming sextually which would also explain Donnie's resistant to touch. But...
I looked at the bed again. The chains were actually quite helpful in a macabre kind of way, because Donnie was tied in the middle of the bed, so I set about moving the chains to the bed, stretching them to their fullest, before re-thinking it and setting them back just a little. It was at this point that I heard.
"What the shell are you doing!?"
I groaned. "What does it LOOK like I'm doing, Lame-A-Nardo? I'm trying out a theory."
Leo hovered a little, then edged closer. "What theory?" He asked, cautiously.
I pointed. "See that blood?"
Leo paled, but managed to keep his nerve and nodded.
"I'm trying to-" I stumbled over my words. "-F-figure out. You know. Where it - it came from."
Leo groaned and ran a hand across his fore-head. "It's a good job Mikey didn't come with us." He muttered. "Or if we could just ask Donnie."
"We're gonna have to." I said. Leo gave me an incredulous look. "I'm serious." I added. "I know we've been pussy-footing around it, but we're gonna have to ask. We've got L.C.'s comments, the flinching whenever he's touched and the damaged to his thighs that indicate that he has been assaulted. But that blood-" I pointed again. "-and I apologise in advance for the callous way this is gonna sound - but that blood is to low down to have...come out his butt."
An uncomfortable pause while I could see Leo was mentally stopping himself throwing up. "Pretend." I told him. "Pretend that we're on Criminal Minds or some shit show like that and that this isn't our brother we're talking about but some random unlucky man. I'm theorising that the blood has some from below the groin, which - considering the wounds we know he has - I'm gonna say is the thighs. With me so far?"
Leo nodded. I could see him mentally shifting from 'big-brother' to 'Detective'. "That makes sense. So... going of that and the fact there's no other blood on the bed or in the room, would it be to much of an assumption to say - he hasn't been raped?"
I considered. "Not anally no. There are other ways to rape someone. Leather-Creep specifically said 'his mouth', so maybe orally? Obviously I'm not hoping he has been." I stood straight up as a thought suddenly hit me. "His knee was quite bruised. Maybe that has something to do with it?"
"Maybe. By the way, I've got his Bo-Staff." Leo said, somewhat hesitantly.
I paused, digesting this, and turned to him. "And you were going to mention this...when?"
"Before we left. I put it to the side when I saw what you were doing. Here." He leaned to the side and picked up the bo-staff that I had managed to completely miss.
I gave a harsh shrug. "So?"
"So..." Leo looked down at the Bo-Staff. "...I was thinking maybe Donnie would like it? Seeing as it's his weapon?"
I considered. "We can give it a go. But don't get your hopes up, Leo."