Chapter 1: (Prologue)
A young Raphael Hamato awoke with the biggest smile on his face, today was the day that he had been working for his entire , today he would receive his mask and his weapons. The young Raphael was sure he was going to get something with a blade, he really wanted the Katana's but he knew he would be happy with the Sai's.
As Master Splinter explained the day before, there would be no training today just a graduation ceremony. Thats why after the entire thing was over, it wasn't a big deal that the young turtle locked himself in his room. There was nothing wrong with it right? Wrong, very wrong.
After the short ceremony the young turtles went to play a normal game of sewer tag, their new masks identifying them in the dimly lit tunnels. It didn't take long for the familiar fight between the blue banded turtle and the red banded turtle. They fought, heated words were exchanged, and Raphael ended back in his room once again, as always.
It was when the turtle was alone in his room that he was truly free. His room was where he was allowed to think or act the way he wanted. Pacing back and forth on the tiled floor was the first time the anger surfaced.
Raphael walked over to a cracked floor length mirror that reflected his form perfectly. Staring at himself he noticed each fault. Evert bruise from missing a block in training, every time he had gotten mad at his brothers all came crushing down at once.
A bodiless voice began speaking to him in the darkness of the room, "Look at you, such filth. You're a failure you know that right? There's a reason that you weren't chosen as a leader. Who would trust someone like you who can't even handle himself when it comes to being alone in a room. What kind of ninja is afraid of the dark or simple things like bugs. It's no wonder that your brother's see you as a pest that always gets in the way. Heh, but you knew that didn't you, you just never wanted to admit it. Well guess what, this is the true reality Raphael. You were meant to be alone."
"Shut up." Raphael's voice trembled slightly as he spoke to no one, "Please just stop, you don't know me."
"Hah! Now that IS rich, coming from you. I am you Raphie-boy I came form your brain, I am a part of your soul. Think of me as what you will I am the only person on this earth that understands you. I understand what it is like to have so many walls, to hold back the anger that grows more and more every day. You can't stop me Raph, I'm what makes up you. Don't try to fight it, just let it happen already. You're a monster think of how strong you can be if you just embrace it."
The young turtle was terrified, hearing enough of whatever was talking to him he did the only thing he could do, bring a fist to the mirror that stood in front of him. He didn't say anything as the glass slowly poured to the floor, dissolving into millions of tiny crystals around his feet.
What did he just do, the world froze around him as he clenched his now bleeding fist that hurt more than any scrape or bruise he had ever received. Tremors wracked the small turtles body as he heard the voice for one final time, "You see Raphael, this is who you are, how can you ever expect to be the protector of the family if the real threat to them, is you."
Raphael backed up slowly, not feeling the shards of glass that protruded into his feat as he did so. He walked until he reached the wall, sliding down the brick he buried his head into his knees, slowly the sounds of the world returned. The pleas from the opposite side of the door and finally the cracking of wood from the hinges.
HIs father was the first to enter the room, he was followed by three green heads popping out of the frame. Splinter silently gathered his second youngest son in his arms, as he carried him over the glass into the dojo. Leaving his sons side only to get tweezers, bandages, and disinfectant.
Splinter worked silently on his son's hand and feat before he finally broke the tense silence, "Raphael, my son, what caused you to do this?"
The red masked turtle's head hung in shame, even when he spoke he refused to meet his fathers gaze, "I don't know what came over me Sensei."
Sighing lightly Master Splinter lifted Raphael's head and spoke very softly, "My son I want you to look me in the eyes." Slowly Raphael's eyes met his fathers gaze and was taken aback by what he saw. Splinter's eyes were pouring with concern and love, but under all of that were glints of fear, which was precisely what he didn't want to see. "Raphael you scared me,, please promise me you will not do this again. It bothers me to see you in pain my son."
Scared. There was that word again, Raphael stood before his master, as he clenched his fists in anger. The pain that rushed through the open wound brought him a small sense of relief. "I'm sorry father, it will not happen again." As he bowed and turned to clean his room, which was now a mess he missed the small head shake from his master.
His three brothers were waiting anxiously on the couch for his return. Mikey was the first to run up to his older brother and hold him in a hug, "Raphie, bro please don't do that again!"
"Yeah little brother," Leo spoke as he placed a hand on Raphael's shoulder, "you gave us quite a scare."
Feeling the tense moment of silence Mikey broke it with a simple question, "Who wants pizza?"
Not giving a full explanation as to why Raphael simply declined and grabbed a broom as he walked to his room and shut the red-clad turtle didn't notice his two older sibling exchanging worried glances and shaking their heads sadly. "Sure Mikey we'd love some pizza."