A/N: As of now, Miyamoto Usagi is human.
After his beloved wife and daughter perished in a fire at the hands of Oroku “The Shredder” Saki, Hamato “Splinter” Yoshi left behind the ashes of his life in Japan and escaped to America. His survival was unbeknownst to the Shredder.
Splinter reconnected with his childhood friend, Miyamoto Usagi, who had years prior left Japan to live in New York City. Usagi graciously welcomed his old friend to live with him in his apartment, and even got him a job at the factory where he worked.
Miyamoto Usagi released a frustrated sigh and sheathed his sword back in his belt.
He groaned. “I am coming!”
He exited the 'office' and trudged off to the kitchen to silence the damned device that dare interrupt his solo sparring session, ready to give any telemarketer a good piece of his mind. He breathed deeply to compose himself and put the corded phone to his ear.
“Usagi, it is me,” a distressed voice said.
“Yoshi, is everything okay, my friend?” he asked. “You sound a bit troubled.”
“Please, do not panic,” Splinter began. “Something very strange has happened to me, and I need your help.”
Usagi sat down at the kitchen table. “What has happened?”
“My body, it...has changed.”
Usagi felt his mind go blank with immediate confusion. “Changed? What are you talking about?”
“I believe that I have been mutated,” Splinter hesitated, “if that is really possible.”
Usagi sighed. “Yoshi, are you fooling with me?”
“I assure you that this is no joke. I wish it were, but it is true. I have been transformed into some rat-like creature.”
Usagi shook his head. “My friend, this is not funny.”
“Please,” Splinter pleaded, though keeping his tone calm, “I need your assistance.”
“Well if what you say is true, then what is it that you expect me to do?”
Splinter sighed. “I don't know. I cannot return to the apartment. I need you to come and meet me. You are the only one that I can trust.”
Usagi debated his next response in his mind: should he give in and go meet his old friend and roommate or hang up the phone and refuse to be suckered into such a foolish charade. He sighed. “Where are you?”
“Do you know where the pet store is? The one that is one block away from the factory?”
“Yes, I believe so...”
“Meet me in the alleyway right beside the store, and please, bring my kimono. I am nude.”
“Very well, Yoshi, but if this is a joke, then it is not at all funny. I will not be amused,” Usagi warned.
“I can assure you that this is not, and Usagi, there is something else.”
Usagi sighed. “More than mutating into a rat creature?”
“There are children...turtle children.”
Usagi scoffed. “Turtle children? Come now, enough of this. It is absurd! Please, do not fool with me this way.”
Splinter sighed. “Please, my friend, just come. I will prove this to be the truth.”
“I am coming, but it is because I fear that something is the matter with you, not so much because I believe what you are telling me.”
Usagi walked through the crowd of people in the city holding a sack of clothing that his friend had requested, the same friend whose sanity he was beginning to question. A rat creature? Turtle children? What in the world were turtle children?
There was the pet store and there was the said dark alleyway right beside it, conveniently with a payphone directly in front of it. He rushed to the corner of the alley, feeling an inkling of worry perk up inside him.
“Splinter-san?” He whispered into the darkness. “Yoshi, are you here?”
“I am here, Usagi. Please, enter. I cannot be seen...”
The worry faded at the sound of his friend's familiar voice and he emerged into the shadows. He sighed. “Yoshi, enough of this. This is ridiculous and is going a bit too...”
Usagi lost his ability to speak at the sight before him: a brown and white six-foot-tall humanoid rat cradling what appeared to be a sort of humanoid reptilian infant in his arms.
“You're telling me,” Splinter, the rat, remarked.
“My...b-but...how...?” Usagi stammered.
“Your guess is as good as mine, my friend.”
Both men turned their heads to the source of the sound. Just a few feet behind Yoshi, two larger humanoid turtles were wrestling each other on the concrete. What exactly they were fighting over was unclear.
Splinter knelt down to their level and pushed them apart with his one free arm. “Come now, little ones, do not fight.”
Usagi entered the alley a few feet deeper and then noticed the two noise makers plus one other smaller one at Yoshi's feet.
“W-what are they?”
“Well, they were baby turtles that I had purchased, but they were exposed to the same chemical that I was and now they are like this,” Splinter explained.
“What chemical?” Usagi pried. “What happened? Oh, I am confused.”
Splinter patted each of the three babies on the ground on their heads to settle them down and then held the smallest in his arms a bit closer to him as he stood up straight to attempt giving his friend an explanation.
“I had walked upon a secret meeting between some strange men and they had tried to attack me, but I fought them off. The chemical they had been carrying spilled on me and the turtles and this is what happened,” he gestured to his new furry form.
“There were others involved? What happened to them?”
“The transformation was very painful, so I did not notice when the men disappeared. I am to assume that they ran off.” Splinter sighed. “It took me some time to calm down the turtles.” He stroked the infant's cheek with his thumb. “Poor things. The transformation must have been excruciating for ones so young.”
Usagi shook his head. “What are you to do?”
“Well, I certainly cannot go about my normal life this way.”
“Come, let us go back to the apartment. We can figure this out there.”
Splinter looked appalled. “No, Usagi, I cannot do that. I must not risk being seen. I must find somewhere else to stay.”
Usagi rolled his eyes. “Such as where? The dumpster? The sewers?”
Splinter smirked and gazed at the nearby manhole. “Hmm.”
Usagi blinked. “No, Yoshi, tell me you know sarcasm when you hear it.”
“Yes, but perhaps the sewers are not such a bad idea, at least in comparison to any other options.”
“My friend, have you lost your mind? You cannot survive in the sewers!”
“I have a better chance there than in society this way,” Splinter reasoned and looked fervently at the infant in his arms. “And what about them? Ones so young...I shudder at the thoughts of what could become of them.”
Usagi arched an eyebrow. “The turtles? You cannot live in the sewers because of some turtles...”
Splinter shook his head. “Usagi, they are much more than that. They are children now and they need me.” He pushed the cooing infant in his arms toward Usagi. “Look at him.”
Usagi gazed into the curious baby blue eyes and sighed. “Yes Yoshi, he is cute, but is he, are they, worth giving up everything?”
Splinter pulled the baby back to his chest in a nurturing embrace. “I have nothing left to give up. You are the only friend that I have and I work a job that, though I am grateful for, I hate.”
“You do not expect me to join you in the sewers, do you? I do not think...”
Splinter held up his hand to silence Usagi. “I do not expect you to give up your life in society. You have much more going for you than I, and these little children could be my chance at starting over.” He nuzzled the infant's freckled cheek, making him giggle and reach for the whiskers that had tickled him.
Usagi was startled when he felt something tugging at his pant leg. There at his feet was the second smallest of the turtles, curiously playing with the laces on his shoes. He hesitantly picked him up and held him against his hip while staring into his wide brown eyes.
“Strange,” he said, “they have human eyes.”
Splinter nodded. “Yes, and they are beautiful.”
Usagi sighed. “Yoshi, are you sure that you can handle four turtle children by yourself? How can you expect to survive in the sewers?”
“Well, I suppose for a grand master of ninjitsu it will not be impossible to obtain necessary supplies without being discovered,” Splinter explained.
“But difficult still,” Usagi added with another sigh. “Are you sure you want to do this?”
Splinter stared at the now drowsy baby in his arms and then the at his feet to the two largest who were now cuddling against each other as if trying to draw warmth from the other.
“Yes,” he said. “I must. They need me.”
“Very well, but you will need this.” Usagi handed Splinter the sack in his free hand.
Splinter carefully set the baby down on the concrete, much to the baby's dismay, and accepted the bag. “Thank you, my friend.” He unfolded the kimono and slipped it onto his new fury form, and then knelt down to scoop up the fussing baby. “It is alright, little one.
Usagi smirked nostalgically. “He seems to have already taken a liking to you. Perhaps I can help you in some way.”
Splinter's ears perked with interest. “In what way?”
“I could provide you with supplies to care for them and survive. I'm sure it will make things much easier for you and your...new little family.”
“Oh, that would be much appreciated, my friend,” Splinter said as he knelt down and tried to scoop up the second largest baby, but he squirmed and fought him a bit, grabbing onto his larger brother. “Do not fuss, little one. I will not harm you.” Once he pried him off of the largest, he cradled him in the arm opposite to the one occupied by his smaller brother, at which point he began to settle. “We had better get moving,” Splinter said. “Would you mind carrying the other?”
“Not at all.” Usagi knelt down and hoisted the largest turtle up on his other hip, to which the turtle calmly complied. “Since you are really going to do this, I know a potential place for you and your turtles.”
“And where is that?”
After wandering through the sewers for nearly forty-five minutes, Usagi and Splinter arrived in an abandoned subway station. All four babies were snoozing from the journey.
“This is it,” Usagi said.
“This looks like it could be suitable given some work. It would appear that it already has a kitchen and a restroom,” Splinter mused.
“To this day I wonder why they abandoned it and just left everything behind,” Usagi said. “It seems a waste.”
“Well, it looks like it will not be wasted after all,” Splinter looked to the snoozing babies in his arms, “because this will be our new home.”
Usagi gazed at the room around him. “I suppose it's as good as any makeshift home in the sewers. It would appear that here in this main room you already have seating for perhaps a living room.”
Splinter grinned and set the two babies in his arms down on the cushioned seats. “Yes. It is a blessing.”
“Now what such things should I bring from the apartment?”
“I do not expect you to bring all of my belongings at once, my friend. Perhaps, for tonight, only the essentials will be necessary: blankets, pillows, my toothbrush, and such.”
“I can do that.” Usagi suddenly felt a wet warmth against his hip. “Oh no.” He set the brown-eyed turtle on the floor, followed by his larger brother, and then examined his now stained, white shirt. “Perhaps diapers should be the first essential.”
“I apologize,” Splinter said. “With all that is going on, I seem to have overlooked that babies need diapers.” He reached for his wallet and gasped when he remembered what he was wearing. “Oh dear, I've lost my wallet.”
“Do not worry, I will look for your wallet in the alley. If I do not find it, then I will pay for the diapers and such.”
Yoshi sighed. “I cannot thank you enough for this support. You are a dear friend.”
“I will do anything for a dear old friend and his...children.” Usagi smiled at the babies sleeping on the benches. “Should I retrieve baby food as well?”
“I will try and see if they will eat it.”
“Alright then, I will get these things right away, but first, I must go home and change my shirt.”
Splinter chuckled. “Very well. Take your time.”
Oroku Saki exited the dojo beside the pet store, his two-year-old daughter pulling him out the door eagerly.
“Daddy! Was 'dere!” She ran ahead of him on the New York sidewalk, her black pigtails bouncing behind her. She stopped in front of the nearest alley and pointed. “Saw rat man and turtle babies!”
Saki met up with her and gazed down the alley. “A rat man, you say?”
“And turtle babies!” She began to run down the alley, but Saki grabbed her by the arm.
“Karai, though I appreciate your creative imagination, I have warned you about making up stories to me,” Saki scolded.
“No story! While you in da store, I walk out here and I saw rat man and turtle babies!”
“Yes, you did walk out here when I told you to stay with me, and now you're in trouble.”
Without missing a beat, Saki bent the toddler over his knee and spanked her backside.
“Now come back inside,” he ordered as he set her back on the ground. “Daddy has work to do.”
“But daddy, th-the rat m-man and b-baby turtles!” She pushed.
He grabbed her arm and pulled her inches from her face. “Enough of that. I want to hear no more of your fantasy stories, is that understood?”
With that, he hoisted her up and carried her back into the dojo.
Usagi entered the subway station, his hands full with bags of supplies.
“I am over here, my friend,” Yoshi responded. He was sitting on the bench, the two smallest babies sleeping in his arms and the two larges”t lying with their heads in his lap.
Usagi plopped down beside them and smiled at the little ones. “Aww, looks like they are wiped out.”
“Yes, they are,” Splinter cooed and kissed the two in his arms each on the head. “They are so precious.”
“I found your wallet,” Usagi began and placed the black leather wallet beside Yoshi, “but the diapers, baby food, and blankets are on me.”
“Usagi, you did not have to...”
“Now, now, consider it a gift from their uncle Usagi,” he smirked. “I also brought plenty of blankets, pillows, and some of your clothing from the apartment. I will bring your other belongings in time.”
Splinter sighed. “Thank you so much, my friend.”
“So have you thought of names for them yet?”
Splinter grinned. “No, not just yet.”
“Do you even know their sexes?”
“I am pretty sure they are all male. They look male.”
Usagi arched an eyebrow. “How can you tell?”
“Male turtles have concave plastrons and larger, thicker tails.” He touched the smallest one's tail for emphasis. “And of course, there is the obvious sex organ, which I haven't seen yet, but when I do I will be certain.” He chuckled. “Still, I am pretty sure they are boys. Speaking of which, let us get them into diapers before one of them has another accident.”
Usagi smiled and shook his head. “Yes, good idea.” He scooped up the two largest ones and laid them on their shells and diapered them, both of them fussing at having been disturbed.
Splinter did the same with the two smallest while they fussed as well.
Usagi pulled four blankets out of one of the bags. “I bought a blanket for each of them.” He wrapped the blue one around the largest and the red one around the second largest.
“I cannot thank you enough, Usagi,” Splinter said as he wrapped the orange blanket around the smallest and the purple around the second smallest. “This would be nearly impossible without you.” He pulled out a pillow from one of the bags and lay the smallest two on top of it, and Usagi followed them with the largest two.
“It is my pleasure,” Usagi replied. “This clearly means a lot to you. I know how hard things have been since you lost Tang Shen and Miwa.”
Splinter sighed sadly. “Yes...”
The turtle in blue began to stir and fuss. Splinter scooped him up and held him to his chest, bouncing him soothingly. “Shh...it is alright, little one.”
“So you have thought of no names for them at all yet?”
“No, not quite.”
The baby in purple then began to fuss as well, so Usagi scooped him up and held him. “I got one for this one,” he said through a chukle, “Mr. Pee pee.”
Splinter laughed. “No, no,” he said and reached over to tickle the baby's foot that stuck out of the purple blanket, making him start to giggle. “Look at that smile,” he cooed.
Usagi set him down, expecting him to crawl to his new father, but instead he crawled to the duffle bag beside him and tipped it over, causing a mess of books to spill out onto the floor. He picked up the one nearest to him and scanned it curiously. Unable to figure out the purpose of the object, he decided it could be a tasty snack and began to chew on the hardback cover.
“What do you have there?” Splinter asked and reached for the book. “Can daddy see it?” The baby carelessly released it and went for the rest of the books, but Usagi scooped him up and cradled him.
Splinter then recognized the book as his Renaissance Artists book. He flipped it open and his eyes immediately went to the name Donatello.
“Donatello...yes, that is perfect,” he said, looking to the little one with a loving smirk.
“Donatello,” Usagi repeated. “Hamato Donatello. Yes, I like it very much. Well, now you have one named, what about the rest?”
Splinter watched the baby dozing of in his arms and began to think of Renaissance artsists again. “Leonardo Da Vanici,” he thought aloud, and then grinned, stroking the little one's cheek. “Yes, Leonardo. I love it.”
“Hamato Leonardo. Leo, like a lion,” Usagi said. “I like it very much.” He carefully scooped up the second largest baby with his free arm. “What about this little guy?”
Splinter glanced down at the book's table of contents and scanned it until he came across a name that he liked. “Raphael,” he said and looked fondly at the sleeping child. “Yes, that will work nicely.” He scooped up the smallest and held him in the arm opposite to Leonardo.
“Now for the littlest one,” Usagi said.
“I've already got it,” Splinter said, “Michelangelo.”
“I don't know, Yoshi. That is quite a long name. It may prove difficult for him to learn.”
Splinter smiled fervently at the smallest baby in his arms. “No, my mind is made up. He is Michelangelo. My little Mikey.”
Usagi grinned. “Very well, but for now, I must have a way to remember who is who.”
“Well, that is easy,” Splinter said. “Michelangelo here has freckles and light blue eyes. Leonardo has darker blue eyes and has the darkest complexion. Donatello has brown eyes and the palest complexion, and Raphael has green eyes and a small chip in his shell on his chest.”
Usagi curiously pulled down the red blanket to see said chip. “Huh. You're right. I wonder how that happened.”
Splinter shook his head. “We may never know.” He placed Mikey and Leo back on the pillow. “They should really be getting to sleep.”
“Agreed.” Usagi placed Donnie and Raph next to their brothers. “I brought your own cot from the apartment, and I also purchased some bottles, sippy cups, baby food, and formula.”
“Thank you, my friend,” Splinter said. “I don't know if they will take to it, but it certainly couldn't hurt to try.”
“I should be going. Do you have all you need to get through the night?” Usagi asked.
“Yes, we should be fine. Please, go home and rest.”
Usagi smiled. “Very well.” He looked to the dozing babies. “Sleep well, little ones.”