Michelangelo laid on his plush cloud bed and basked in the warmth of the sun. A shadow stretched over him and his eyes popped open. A smile spread across the little Cherub’s face as he turned to greet the other Angel.
As soon as he saw who it was, his smile faded. The look of disappointment and confusion must have been visible because the other Angel crossed his arms over his scarred plastron, “You were expecting someone else?”
Unable to lie, Mikey shook his head, “Actually I was.”
Raphael tilted his head to the side, “Who?”
Mikey opened his mouth to answer then closed it again and thought. He moved to answer a few more times before admitting, “I don’t know.”
“You don’t know?” Raph squinted down at him.
Mikey sighed and looked around, “Does it feel like something’s missing?”
Raph dropped his arms and looked around, “No.”
Placing his hand on his chest, Mikey swallowed past the feeling of dread that was swelling, “I feel like I’ve lost something, something very important to me.”
Raph hovered over to sit down next to Mikey, “It’s okay.” He wrapped his arms around the small Cherub, “It will pass.”
Confused, Mikey looked up at Raph, “How would you know?”
“A few years back, I had the same feeling,” Raph smiled. “I felt that I had lost something precious to me and I spent days searching.”
“Did you ever find out what it was?” Mikey asked.
Raph helped Mikey stand, “Splinter talked to me about it and he put my mind at ease.”
Mikey perked up and his feet left the ground as he started to hover, “Maybe I should go talk to Splinter.”
“Wouldn’t hurt,” Raph smiled up at Mikey.
The little Cherub swooped down and hugged the Battle Angel, “Thank you.”
“Any time, my little Cherub,” Raph whispered back. They both froze for a moment then, slowly, Mikey pulled away.
“That didn’t sound right.”
A sad smile spread across Raph’s face, “I guess I need to talk to Splinter again, too.”
Mikey flew off in the direction of the Angelic teacher and Raph lifted up to follow after. They soared over the clouds, waving at other Angels as they passed. Mikey noticed that some would look at them in a brief moment of confusion before turning back to what they were doing with a shrug.
The two Angels landed near the entrance to Splinter’s home and waited for him to present himself to them. “Is there a problem?” they heard his voice before the Angelic rat came into view.
Mikey twisted his fingers together as he answered, “Something feels wrong.”
A gentle smile spread across Splinter’s face, “It is your first day together.”
“But,” Mikey started to argue but Splinter interrupted.
“Once the two of you become familiar with each other, the feeling will pass.” His eyes moved to Raphael, “You look like you are troubled as well.”
Raph fidgeted a little, “I will admit that the feeling has come back.”
“Again?” Splinter sighed. “Maybe being assigned to Michelangelo will finally rid you of that. Focus on bonding with each other and just forget about this feeling of loss. The more you dwell on it the worse it will become.”
The two Angels nodded their understanding.
“Now,” Splinter grabbed hold of Mikey’s hands. “I have an assignment for you.”
“Yeah,” Mikey perked up again.
“There is a child missing,” Splinter informed them. “You are to guide the search party to the child’s location while Raphael protects the child from harm. It will not be easy. The Brothers have sent Devils to see to it that the child is found dead. The child must live. He has the ability to be a powerful monk one day.”
The two Angels nodded as the information they needed filled their minds, then they took to the air once again. Dropping through the clouds into the Mortal realm, the two Angels flew to find their assigned Mortals.
Splinter sighed as they flew off, “It is not a good sign that he still feels the loss.” He stood and listened to the silent response in his mind. “We can only hope,” he replied as he disappeared back into his home.
Mikey found the search party and glided down to hover close to one in the group. He whispered to the Guardian Angel on the male cat’s shoulder, “Have him follow me,” then he drifted to the forest. The little Guardian flitted around the cat’s head and the young cat looked up in Mikey’s direction then started to walk toward the forest.
“Where are you going?” another in the group shouted. “We already searched the forest.”
Mikey looked over at the female wolf and saw the serpent Devil that was wrapped around her. It whispered in her ear, venom dripping from its fangs.
“Get back here,” the wolf barked.
Mikey quickly flew to the cat’s side offering strength to the little Guardian on his shoulder. “Break from the group,” Mikey mumbled. “You need to go into the forest.”
The cat set his chin in defiance, “I’ll go alone then. I have a feeling that we missed something.”
The Devil’s eyes narrowed as it glared at Michelangelo. It tightened its grip on the wolf, feeding her rage. The wolf huffed and stormed over to the cat and grabbed his wrist, “You go off alone then we will have two missing children to search for. Don’t be stupid.”
The Devil leaned over and whispered into the cat’s ear, “It’s too dangerous to go off alone. Stay with the group where it’s safe.”
“But, the child’s in the forest,” Mikey argued.
The young cat looked over his shoulder at the forest, “I guess you’re right.”
“No!” Mikey flew off to try and encourage the others to help, but he could see the Devil’s taint on them so he flew back to the child’s only hope. “You’ll be fine,” Mikey urged. “You need to go into the forest to find the child.”
“Stay with the group,” the Devil hissed.
“Please,” Mikey begged. “He needs you.”
The young cat pulled his arm free of the wolf’s grip, “I’m going.” He turned and ran into the forest.
“Foolish child,” the wolf woman hollered after him as the Devil uncoiled himself from the woman and rushed into the forest.
“That child will die,” it growled as it shot past.
Mikey urged the young cat to run, “Hurry. There isn’t any time to waste.”
He guided the boy through the forest, dodging obstacles set in place by the Devil’s passing. When they reached the child, Mikey saw Raph battling another Devil. The Devil crane was trying to lure the child to the rushing river.
“Yell at him not to go to the river,” Mikey told the young cat.
“Get away from the river!” the cat yelled.
The rabbit child turned to the cat, “I’m so thirsty.”
The snake Devil shot forward and wrapped around the child, “Then why don’t you bend down and take a drink.”
The small bunny turned back to the river and Mikey rushed to him. “It’s not safe,” he warned and the child hesitated.
“You can hold on to the roots there,” the serpent whispered. “It will be fine.”
Mikey looked up to see Raph fighting with the crane Devil. Mikey wished he had the Battle Angel’s ability to physically fight a Devil, but his powers were limited. Mikey urged the young cat towards the child, “Grab him.”
“Miyamoto, come here,” the cat yelled. “You can get a drink back at the village.” He rushed to the young rabbit’s side and scooped him up.
Mikey guided the cat’s steps while the Devil made the rabbit squirm in his arms. Once the pair was on safe ground, the Devil hissed and dove into the ground. Then the crane gave up its fight with Raph and joined the snake.
The rabbit stopped squirming and the young cat carried him through the forest, back to the village. Mikey and Raph stayed with them to see the child’s parents rush to scoop their son up in their arms. A wide grin spread across Mikey’s face as a sense of accomplishment filled him.
Raph wrapped his arms around him, “You beat that Devil.”
“Just barely,” Mikey sighed. “I almost lost to him several times.”
“You beat him in the end, and that’s all that matters,” Raph smiled. “Let’s go home and see if there is anything else we can do today.”
“Let’s take a fly around the village first,” Mikey suggested. “I want to see if there are any little miracles that I can perform today.”
Raph nodded and they made their way through the village. They listened to a woman’s prayers for a child and Mikey made sure that she and her husband were fertile. Then they prevented a man from stepping too close to a poisonous snake. Finally they aided a family through their grief as a loved one passed, and then guided his soul to Heaven.
By the end of the day, Mikey was filled with the joy of a good day’s work.
As time passed, the two Angels grew closer and the feeling that something was missing became a dim memory. But in his dreams, Michelangelo would see another Angel. They would soar through the clouds together, and even though he could not remember his name he trusted and loved him.
“My little Cherub,” the other Angel would whisper to him and kiss him gently.
He would wake next to Raph and after a gentle nuzzle the dream would be lost. They would spend their days together preforming miracles and fighting Devils. But despite how close they became, it never grew into a love like he felt in his dreams.
There were days that the feeling of loss would come back and there were others where he would see Raph searching, but they were constantly told that it was nothing and that they should focus on each other.
Mikey laid on a cloud and gazed at the world below with Raph lounging close by. He loved to watch Mortals and see the goodness in their everyday activities. How they would stop and help each other even without the influence of and Angel. Then something caught Mikey’s eye, “Hey Raph? Why is that part of forest so dark?”
Raph landed next to Mikey and looked down. “Demons,” he answered.
“Are we just going to leave them there?” Mikey asked, looking up at Raph.
Raph glared down at the dying forest, “We can’t do anything unless the Mortals pray for us to. And something that strong will need a monk.”
“Why?” Mikey asked. “You know they’re there. Just go get them.”
Raph sighed, “There are rules, Mikey. Trust me I’ve wanted to get that Demon for some time now. And he’s had a friend now for several years. It just keeps getting worse. The Mortals simply chose to stay away from that spot.” He looked up, “I’m being summoned. Stay here.” He then shot up into the clouds, leaving Mikey alone.
Mikey draped his arm over the side of the cloud and lazily watched the people on the road. He noticed two men walking down the road and towards the forest. “Oh no,” he pushed up off the cloud and hovered over it. “That’s dangerous.”
He swooped down and got behind the two men with the intention of warning them through their Guardians. He hovered after them for a few moments in confusion, “Where are your Guardians?”
One of them turned and grabbed his ankle, “Don’t have one.” The purple banded turtle looked up at him with a toothy grin.
Mikey’s heart skipped, “Demon.”
He was pulled with great speed into the forest then slammed down on to the dank ground. He struggled to get away, but the one that held him was too strong. “We’ll rip his wings off and throw him in the pool,” the Demon purred. “But let’s have some fun first.”
Mikey cried as he fought against the Demon’s vice like grip. “No,” he pleaded as he felt clawed fingers grab at his tail.
The second Demon put his hand on the first Demon’s shoulder, “Wait, brother.”
“I caught him,” the first Demon growled. “I get first go.”
“I said wait,” the other pushed him away, but still held Mikey down. The second Demon was also a turtle, but wore a blue band over his eyes. He removed his hat and looked down at Mikey, “This is the one from my dreams.”
The first one crawled back over, “Are you sure?”
“Yeah,” the second one breathed. “This is my little Cherub.”
Mikey froze, “What did you say?”
The Demon looked down at him and smiled, “What is your name?”
“I know better than to give my name to a Demon,” Mikey said in defiance.
“I will tell you my name,” the Demon purred.
“Don’t be a fool,” the other snapped. “Even if he was your Cherub, he doesn’t remember you and giving him your name will get you locked away.”
“Shut up,” the one over Mikey hissed. He turned back to Mikey, “Look at me. Don’t you know who I am?” He reached up and pulled the blue band down off of his eyes.
Mikey closed he eyes a moment to try to steady himself before looking into those azure eyes. There was something familiar about them. Time seemed to slow as they stayed locked on each other. “Mikey,” the Demon whispered.
Tears filled Mikey’s eyes, “Leo?” Memories flooded back into his mind and the fear he was feeling melted away.
“Not fair!” the other Demon hissed. “Mine would attack me at first sight.”
Leo looked over his shoulder, “Calm down.” He turned back to Mikey, “I have missed you.”
“What happened?” Mikey sobbed.
“I made a mistake,” Leo answered. “As punishment I was cast out and I was lucky that I became Demon and not a Devil.” He eased off of Mikey. “You should go.”
“I just found you,” Mikey wrapped around Leo as soon as the Demon was on his feet. “I’m not going anywhere. I love you.”
Leo was stiff, “Mikey I’m not safe. I can’t always control myself.”
“I know you would never hurt me,” Mikey whispered into Leo’s plastron.
“Yes he would,” the other Demon hummed behind them with a gentle chuckle.
Leo’s hands came up and pushed Mikey away, “I don’t want to hurt you, but I would. I have the urge now to hurt you. Please go, before I can’t control myself anymore.” There was pain in Leo’s voice, “I’m not an Angel anymore, Mikey. I’ve hurt people. I’ve killed people.”
Mikey drifted back away from the pair of Demons, “I’m not giving up on you.”
“Go,” there was a dark rumble in Leo’s voice. “And… I love you too.”
“I’ll be back,” Mikey stated before flying away. He looked back over his shoulder at the other Demon and wondered if he was the one Raph had lost.