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The Jefferson Elementary School of New York was conducting their end-of-the-school-year ceremonies. All the students were gathered in the auditorium, and the principal was giving a speech about the past school year. The kids were fidgeting in their seats and wishing he'd finish soon, but he didn't seem to notice.
"And in addition," the principal boomed, for some odd reason excited by what he was saying, "to our wonderful attendance record, we have had a dramatic drop in children sent to my office for disciplinary reasons. This fact deserves to be applauded."
The auditorium broke out in half-hearted clapping. A paper airplane flew across the room.
"But before I dismiss you for the summer," the principal continued, "I would like to take this moment to single out every teacher and name a wonderful achievement that each did this year."
There was a collective groan from the captive audience.
"Oh, come now," he said. "Don't you want to honor your teachers?"
No one responded, and principal gave no sign as to whether he thought they agreed with him or if he actually realized that no one in their right mind would speak up. Anyway, he continued on with his speech lauding all the wonderful accomplishments of the school's faculty.
He was interrupted by a large crash as something broke through the ceiling. The principal looked horrified, the teachers were shocked, and the students were excited that something interesting was finally happening. A large, red jewel descended through the hole in the roof and floated down next to the principal.
"Greetings," the Genastone said, and dozens of energy tendrils shot out from its force field. They spread all around the room and passed through every person, draining their life energy. In a matter of minutes, the whole school was depleted.
Krang and Shredder entered through a side door. "Nice work," Shredder commented, gazing out at the sea of barely-alive bodies.
"How wonderful," the Genastone said, its force field crackling with enormous amounts of energy. "How perfectly delicious."
Donatello was busy working on his computer. He fiddled with lines of programming code, delved through numerous windows, and struggled with protocol restrictions. A small electronic device the size of a cell phone was connected by a cord to the computer. Don seemed to be trying to transfer some program into the small device, and he wasn't having the best success.
Raphael was busy in the next room practicing with a punching bag. "Hai!" he shouted as a vicious kick hit the bag square on. It swung and rattled on the chain holding it up.
Ninjara was reading some of Splinter's old mythology books in the library. Splinter himself was meditating. Leonardo was balancing upside-down on one hand.
All were caught by surprise as Michaelangelo rushed in, hurdled toward the TV, turned it on, and cranked up the volume.
"Hey!" Don exclaimed. Mike had bumped the table on his way through and had knocked the cell-phone-size device off. Luckily, Don caught it before it hit the floor. "Watch where you're going!"
"What's gotten into you, noodle brain?" Raph asked as he jabbed at the punching bag.
"Yeah," said Ninjara in irritation. "Some of us are trying to read."
Mike was panting heavily. "I ran all the way home," he said. "I saw this playing in a store window and knew you had to see it."
Leo deftly landed on his feet and entered the living room. The rest of the Turtles followed, slightly annoyed but still curious as to what had gotten Mike so worked up.
April was on the screen. She was standing outside of the Jefferson Elementary School. Ambulance crews were working in the background, carrying kids on stretchers out to their waiting vehicles. None of the children were moving.
"They show symptoms of a disease that has recently been affecting only homeless people," April reported. "The specific cause of this disease is unknown, as is why it suddenly decided to strike this elementary school. Scientists and doctors will soon begin to attempt to unravel the cause of this strange illness, while the mayor is expected to give a press conference at three. For those of you who just joined in, the entire Jefferson Elementary School was found comatose..."
Raph punched a wall. "I don't believe it!" he shouted. Ninjara tried to calm him down.
"This is very serious," Leo said. "If they're capable of this, then who knows what they could do?"
"They could hold the White House for ransom," Mike said.
Don in the meantime had rushed back to his computer. "Ha!" he exclaimed. "Got it!" He came back holding the small device. "This should do the trick."
"What is it?" Mike asked.
"It detects energy residue," Don explained. "Using Dr. Thompson's research, I've programmed it to scan for the energy left by the Genastone."
"So," said Leo, "we'll be able to follow the trail they left to their hideout."
"Exactly," Don said.
"Awesome, bro," Raph said, patting him on the shoulder. "So, when do we go?"
"Tonight," Leo said. "We'll go tonight."
Under the light of a half-full moon, the Turtles walked quietly into the Jefferson Elementary School. They kept to the shadows as they walked down the hallway. The door to the auditorium had a sign saying "Caution: Biohazard," but they ignored it. They knew the "illness" wasn't caused by any pathogen.
Inside the auditorium, Don brought out the energy-detector and activated it. The others stood back and watched as Don walked around the room, trying to find any trace that the Genastone had been there. When he reached the stage, he let out a cry of success.
"The energy is very strong here," Don said when the others joined him. "I get a soft trail leading that way, and a strong one going that way."
"We'll take the strong trail," Leo said. "That's probably the way he went after he drained all those people."
The Turtles followed the invisible trail, Don leading the way. "Hey, Don," Raph called. "Last night, the Genastone kept talking about draining our energy. Could you explain that?"
"Maybe," Don replied. "The Genastone's force field and the energy weapons it used against us last night mean that it must operate sort of like a battery. It seems to drain something from people in order to 'charge up,' so to speak."
"But just what is it draining from these people?" Ninjara asked.
"I'm not sure," Don replied. "Whatever it is, it hasn't been discovered by modern science yet."
"Interesting," Leo said. "I'm no scientist, but would it be possible to take the energy back out of it?"
"Yeah," Raph said, "can't you just take a couple of solar panels and suck the juice right out of that blasted jewel?"
"I've been thinking along the same lines," said Don. "However, solar panels were designed to capture solar energy, and this new energy might end up just frying its circuits. I need to find a different way to capture the energy it uses."
"Jeez," Mike said, "I didn't know it was that complicated."
"Remember that the next time I'm working on something," Don said.
"Hush," Ninjara said. "I believe we are getting close to our destination."
Krang was in his laboratory, concentrating hard on his work. His tentacles grasped the fine tools as he worked with the delicate configuration of wires. They all had to be arranged just right.
He backed off and set the tools down for a small break. He took the magnifying lens off his eyes and set it on the table next to the small round device he was working on. It was about the size of a golf ball. One panel was lifted, exposing the labyrinth of wires within.
It was a life energy vacuum. When the Genastone came in contact with it, all its energy would be sucked into the device. The precise arrangements of wires would trap the energy in a never-ending loop. All the power contained inside the Genastone would be theirs to use.
And indeed, the Genastone had a lot of power. It was almost too much. The Genastone was out of their control now. Krang had to hurry and finish the vacuum, before the Genastone got ideas.
Shredder interrupted him on the intercom. "What is it, Saki?" Krang asked. "I told you not to bother me while I'm working."
"You'll want to know this," Shredder said, without an apology. "The Turtles are coming."
"Really," Krang said. Part of him was irritated that they had found them so fast, but another part of him was very happy to get a chance to destroy the Turtles. "I'll be right up. And Saki, let's fight above ground."
The Turtles cautiously entered the warehouse. The energy trail led inside here. They walked around, inspecting the interior. It was filled with dozens of boxes. Donatello looked closely at one and saw that it contained mouse traps.
"The irony of this is killing me," said Raph, who had also seen what the warehouse contained.
"Indeed," Leo said quietly. "Now, be careful, for this very well might be a trap."
"You are correct, turtle," a voice said.
"Shredder!" the Turtles exclaimed.
They turned toward an empty space in the middle of the warehouse. A circle of light appeared, and then an elevator raised above ground. Shredder, Krang, and the Genastone got out, and the elevator went back down to their underground hideout.
"Prepare to meet your doom," said Shredder, who had two swords in his hands.
"Same to you," Raph replied, his sais glinting in the faint moonlight coming through the windows.
"Attack!" Shredder ordered.
"But first," the Genastone said, "some elbow room."
Massive tentacles shot out from the force field and speared the boxes filling the building, then flung them away. The Turtles ducked as the crates soared over their heads. In a matter of seconds, the warehouse was clear.
"Holy bujeezus," Mike said.
"That school gave me great power," the Genastone said. "Just look what else I can do!"
Crimson energy began pouring out of the Genastone and forming into shapes. The life energy materialized into enormous animals! As soon as they finished taking shape, they rushed to destroy the Turtles.
This made Krang especially nervous. But right now, he had other problems. Besides, if the Genastone helped them eliminate the Turtles, then it was a good thing.
Raphael dodged as a crab twice his height swung its claw at him. "Yo, Donny," he shouted. "What's going on here?"
"I don't know," he answered as an equally large viper attacked him. He vaulted on his bo away from the snake's mouth. "Their appearance is red and shines clear throughout, almost like crystal. I believe they're made of that special energy."
"Life energy," the Genastone corrected. "That oh so wonderful substance that every living creature has." It approached Michaelangelo. "And you mutants have an exceptional amount of it. The five of you will power me up very nicely."
"Back off," Mike said. "You aren't biting your fangs into me."
"No," the Genastone replied, "but that might."
A titanic bat swooped down and snatched Mike in its claws. He let out a yelp as he was carried away. "Lemme go!" he exclaimed, beating the creature with his nunchakus.
Don swung his bo as the viper struck again. His weapon made a solid "thwack" as it connected. The creature seemed unharmed.
"They're solid," Don said.
"So what's their weakness?" Raph asked. The crab aimed its claw for his neck, but he stopped it with his sais. He strained as he tried to keep the pinchers from closing. From the corner of his eye, he saw the crab bring its other claw around. He swore.
A sword flashed in and propped open the other claw. "Need some help?" Ninjara asked.
"Happy for the assistance," Raph answered.
Mike was mercilessly beating on the bat holding him, but it did no good. "These guys are tough," he said.
"Of course," said the Genastone, who was controlling its creations from a high, out-of-the-way vantage point. "They're made of pure energy. And the solidified life energy is exceptionally strong."
Leonardo and Shredder stood facing each other. "Let's dance," Shredder said.
"With pleasure," Leo replied.
They launched at each other. What followed was a whirling frenzy of swords, a treacherous fury of attacks and parries. Their clashing swords caused a great clamor.
Krang wanted a piece of the action, too. He spotted Donatello and remembered the fun he had had with him last night. Too bad he didn't have his anti-grav gun with him right now. He cocked the laser rifle he had brought with him and fired at Don.
Don was too busy avoiding the viper to notice he was in danger. Luckily, his wild dodging movements meant the first shot only zapped the end off of his bo. He turned to see Krang preparing to shoot again and was almost eaten by the viper. This is a bit too much, he thought as he grabbed onto the snake and started wrestling it.
Raph could feel his arms growing tired. The crab relentlessly kept pushing against his sais, and he wasn't sure how much longer he could keep the claw from closing with him in it. "On the count of three," he told Ninjara, "we take our weapons away and jump, okay? One, two, three!"
He pulled back his sais and flung himself sideways as the claw rushed to where he had stood a second before. It buried itself into the ground. Raph used this opportunity to jump on the crab's arm and climb onto its back, where he was out of the crab's reach.
"Whoever designed crabs so they couldn't touch their backs deserve a medal," Raph said. He then took to trying to chip away at the creature's back with his sais.
"Raph, look out!" Ninjara shouted, pointing.
The bat carrying Mike had swung around and was heading straight for Raph. Alerted by Ninjara, he turned just in time to see Mike's open-mouthed expression before they collided. Raph fell off the crab, while the bat flew off with Mike, a little battered now, still in tow.
Raph, lying on the ground, looked up to see the crab advancing on him. He rolled, avoiding the creature's pinchers, underneath its belly and thrust up with his sais. That did as little good as it did anywhere else on the crab's body. "This thing doesn't even have a soft underside!" he yelled in frustration.
Don was gripping tightly to the viper's body. They were rolling over each other. Hopefully, Krang was crazy enough to shoot and accidentally hit the snake. If not, he have to take down the viper some other way. Don gradually started working his way up to the snake's head. That would be a good place to start.
Krang was watching the struggle from a distance, the laser rifle gripped tightly in his tentacles. He could see what Don could not, that the movements of the snake were specially made to expose the turtle to him. The Genastone is trying to give me an open shot, Krang thought as he saw his opportunity. Don was directly behind the snake's head, leaving him vulnerable. Krang wasted no time and quickly fired his gun.
But Don had been paying attention, and he deliberately put himself in an open position. He saw Krang fire and instantly jumped out of the way. The laser shot hit the snake. It jerked once, swelled up, and then, strangely, dissipated into nothing.
The Genastone let out a cry of outrage. "You idiot!" it shouted at Krang. "You idiot!"
Don picked up his bo where he had dropped it. He had seen something valuable here, but the rush of the battle left him no time to think about it. Right now, he needed to help out his brothers.
The closest to him was Leo. Don took his bo and with one swift swing hit Shredder in the back of the head. He turned to see where the blow had come from.
"You?" Shredder said. "Have you come to pester me like a flea does a dog?"
"I can handle this, Don," Leo said.
"Oh really," Shredder said, and suddenly swung at Leo, knocking a sword from his hand.
Leo recovered quickly and somersaulted over Shredder's head, hitting him with the handle of his sword along the way. Then he landed and kicked him square in the back. Shredder fell down and his swords clattered away.
"Actually," Leo said to Don, "thanks for the assist."
The Genastone was very angry. Curse that insolent alien brain, it thought to itself. I must recharge some. The bat flew over with Mike still in its iron grasp. "Hello, my little friend," the Genastone said. Mike struggled, but there was nothing he could do as he was drawn closer to the jewel's force field.
Shredder turned over on the ground and glared at the two Turtles. "I won't be defeated so easily," he said, and drew a laser pistol from his belt. Don jumped out of the way, while Leo held up his swords and deflected the laser blasts.
The deflected shots sped through the air and connected with the bat holding Mike. It suddenly went rigid, dropped Mike, and evaporated away. Mike landed heavily on his shell, but he was all right.
Now the Genastone was really furious. A couple more deflected laser shots hit its force field and were harmlessly absorbed. "Put those guns away before you do something else stupid!" it ordered. "You bumbling fools are worthless! We must leave before you do something else idiotic!"
Tendrils extended from the Genastone's force field and wrapped around Krang and Shredder and, to their protest, they were dragged away. The Genastone tunneled underground and sealed up the entrance behind them.
But the Turtles' troubles were not over yet. The giant crab was still there, and without its master to guide it, it started wildly attacking anything. The Turtles regrouped on one side of the warehouse.
"So," Raph asked, "what do we do?"
"They had an underground hideout," Don said, "so if we can get that creature aiming at the ground, we could cause a cave-in."
"Agreed," Leo said. "Now, who gets to be the bait?"
"I will," Raph volunteered. "If I tuck into my shell, you guys can slide me along the ground."
"Sounds good," Mike said.
The crab was having a fun time smashing some crates when it looked up and noticed that the Turtles had formed a perimeter around him. Leo gave Raph, in his shell, a good shove and he sped across the floor. The crab delighted at this new object to smash and started trying to hit it. Fortunately it missed and only managed to strike the ground.
"Is that the best you can do?" Raph taunted as Mike caught him and pushed him back across the room.
This was repeated several times, and finally the crab dug into the ground one time too many. There was a great rumbling and the ground collapsed beneath the creature. Ninjara caught Raph and he came out of his shell to see what had happened.
"Aw, man," Mike said when they saw the crab was unharmed. Instead, it was very angry and was swiping right and left at whatever it could hit. It connected with some electronic equipment in the lair. A high pitched whine started and grew steadily louder.
"Uh-oh," Don said.
"What?" Raph asked.
"Run!" Don ordered and took off as fast as he could go.
The other Turtles did the same and managed to get out of the building before it exploded. They were flung away as bits of flaming wreckage followed them. When the noise had died down, they lay panting on the ground where they had fallen.
"What the hell was that?" Raph shouted.
"Apparently their hideout contained some volatile equipment," Don answered.
"Is everyone all right?" Leo asked. He got several positive answers. "Okay, then we'd better get going. The cops will be here soon."
"And the firefighters," Mike added as they walked away from the burning remains of their fight.
For almost an hour, Krang and Shredder had endured the endless tirade by the Genastone, which had brought them to an underground chamber it had made. The jewel just couldn't seem to stop talking about their inadequacies and how stupid their actions had been.
Finally, Shredder had had enough. He turned and glared at the floating jewel. "Listen," he ordered, "I don't want to hear another word out of your mouth."
"I assume that was metaphorically speaking," the Genastone said.
"Just calm down," Krang said. "Getting angry isn't going to solve anything. We need to find a new hideout and get our thoughts organized."
"What's all this 'we' business?" the Genastone asked.
Shredder was shocked. "You can't leave us!" he exclaimed. "We have so much to offer you."
"We have knowledge of this planet," Krang said, "knowledge that could prove very useful."
"I can get that knowledge from other means," the Genastone replied. "And besides, it's not my way to consort with traitors. Well, don't you have anything to say to that?"
Shredder tried to come up with some excuse or explanation.
"Quit your blathering," the Genastone ordered. "I knew from the start what you were thinking. I may be slightly damaged, but my observational powers are still fully functional! Every move you made, every word you said, betrayed what you were planning. However, I needed you to get me back to an acceptable power level. And now, that need has been fulfilled."
Krang and Shredder tried to protest, but it was too late. Two energy tendrils shot out into their bodies and soon their lifeless forms collapsed on the ground. The Genastone laughed and continued with the underground tunnel system he was making. It was time to prepare for the mutants.
to be continued...
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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and all related characters are the property of someone else. This is a work of fanfiction and no copyright infringement was intended. The Genastone is my own creation.