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About Varied / Hobbyist A. K. Jones25/Female/United States Groups :iconteaching-darkness: Teaching-Darkness
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A. K. Jones
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Mephiles really shouldn't be surprised by now. He'd thought he'd seen just about everything by now in his relatively short life on the surface world. Thought he'd been through nearly everything a young male Mobian Hedgehog his age could possibly survive through. Heck, he even died once, to be technical. And time warping, as well, was something that had been in his list of life adventures that actually preceded the current incident they were working out.

But this, however, was new.

If he could put any words to it, he would have to say that he thought they were floating in a blue-black gradient void, with a pale cerulean glow emanating off himself for whatever reason. He hated that his feet couldn't touch a sort of solid surface, like the ground, and it drove him crazy that there was near nothing to sense around him.

Except, perhaps, Dark, who had already shoved away from him and was frantically assessing the environment (or lack thereof).

"Look, I don't care how this happened, I just want to know where we are right now..." Mephiles said, drooping his ears in exasperation. "And how we're getting back." He blinked, then jolted when something occurred to him, causing a curse in his native tongue to slip out as he turned his head in all possible directions. "Where's Iblis? Oh, geeze!"

Dark gasped harshly, gawking at the area around him as well. He pulled at the tufts of fur around his cheeks anxiously as a steady whine started to rise from the back of his throat.

"Brother's gone! Brother's gone! Brother's gone!" Dark wailed in horror, shaking his head. "Brother's gone! Brother's gone! Brother's gone!"

Mephiles flinched, feeling equally upset as well. Iblis was separated from them, which was bad as they did not know where they were, as well as how to get back to him. The poor flame was trapped in 1996, and the two of them, as far as the hedgehog knew, could very well be trapped in... well... nowhere.

Mephiles reached over and grabbed both wrists as soon as Dark started to tear out little clumps of fur from the tufts.

"Please don't do that, it took a long time to even those out nicely for you." Mephiles said gently, watching Dark with caution.

Dark continued to chant loud and apprehensively, wide eyes staring past Mephiles. The hedgehog grabbed him by the face, and pulled him to where their snouts were just inches from each other.

"Dark, please look at me!" Mephiles said loudly, desperate to get a coherent response. "I can't have you going to pieces again!"

Dark was screaming now, eyes darting around frantically. It was clear that Mephiles wasn't getting through to him.

... He'll peter out, just stay calm... Just keep a hold on him and wait it out... Don't let him go...

He pulled Dark a little closer, allowing their foreheads to touch, intending on using this as a calming gesture. He immediately reeled back once a thought that wasn't his own flashed through his mind, leaving virtually no trace, as Dark continued to howl in terror, perhaps a bit louder now.

Mephiles frowned a little, trying to recall the briefly intrusive thought, as he had learned by now not to brush off such an event, but it had vanished as quickly as it appeared, leaving only a feeling of dread that he couldn't decipher if it was from the thought, the loss of the thought, or from Dark. Mephiles didn't like that, but there was really nothing he could do about it.

He instead decided to return to his task of calming Dark down, who had stopped shrieking, if only to now stare past Mephiles with a horrified expression, wheezing and shaking. His eyes quickly shifted back to Mephiles, and a small twitch settled in cheek.

"... Let go..."

"Dark, I-"

"... Let go..." Dark mumbled more frantically, reaching up to pry at Mephiles' hands. "... Let me go... Let go of me..."

"I'm not-" Mephiles started to say before he was cut off quickly.

"Don't touch me!" Dark snarled, lifting a foot to kick the hedgehog back, but as there wasn't much leverage, the strike wasn't very forceful. "Don't touch me! Get your hands off of me!"

"I am not letting you go until you're thinking clearly again." Mephiles bit his lip, knowing that this was most certainly his own fault. Given his empathic abilities, he could feel the jumbled mix of emotions between him and Dark, and this was one of those times where it was difficult to which was coming from who.

Dark continued to shout and kick and fight and squirm, screaming obscenities and threatening the hedgehog as he tried again and again to pry loose. He finally succeeded when he headbutted Mephiles in the face, who cried out in pain and clapped his hands over his snout.

"Hey! That really hurt!" He cried out, blinking furiously as he pinched his nose, hands glowing purple faintly. "Aw, geeze, I think it's bleeding!"

Dark shot a glare at him.


Mephiles looked up at him with a pained expression, partly from his nose, but mostly because of how callous Dark had sounded right then.

Dark was livid, and wasn't anywhere near calming down. A jumpy looking red Aura erupted around him, and he shouted angrily before shoving Mephiles away.

"H-hey! Stop it!" Mephiles squeaked, feeling quite a bit scared now as he brought his hands up to instinctively shield his already hurt face.

Dark swung a hand at him, only to be quickly caught by the wrist, then again when he tried once more.

Mephiles stared at Dark, who still appeared furious, and waited patiently for him to calm down.

Gradually, Dark's baring of his teeth faded, the facial tics slowed down, and the angered glare lessened as another emotion entirely crept in his face slowly. Sadness of a magnitude that Mephiles had only glimpsed time and again took over Dark, and the shadow's eyes welled up before he sniffled loudly and burst into tears, howling and wailing oh so miserably.

Mephiles instinctively let go of Dark's wrists and wrapped him up in the best embrace he could offer, to which Dark did not try to escape, or at least tried to squirm weakly before giving up entirely and began bawling even louder than before.

"... Shhhh... It's alright..." Mephiles whispered in Dark's ear as he rubbed and patted his back gently, the pale, inconsolable shadow trembling feverishly. "... It's alright, Dark... Shhhh... I'm here..."

Dark tried to speak, but all he managed was a gurgled, hardly audible mess of vocalizations between sobs. He raised a hand and weakly beat it against the hedgehog before just giving up and slumping against Mephiles, moaning and whimpering as if his heart had broken into a thousand tiny pieces.

Mephiles knew this was pretty much a fact, as he had felt the pain strike through him as well, and it saddened him so much that he felt quite sick, and having a bloody nose didn't help matters much.

Mephiles stopped stroking Dark and held his arms around him, squeezing firmly, as if afraid the shadow was going to be ripped away from him.

"... P-puh-please stop crying..." Mephiles breathed, trying to keep from breaking down as well. "... Sc-scream at me all you w-want... C-call me an id-d-diot... Or a stuh-stupid hedgehog... Juh-just stop crying..." He sniffled, inhaling sharply. "... I-I didn't mean t-to hurt you... I c-can't ask you t-to understand, b-but I know I scuh-screwed up badly..."

Dark had gotten quieter, but Mephiles could still feel him breathing heavily, and considered that he might have been constricting Dark with his hold without meaning to. The last thing he wanted to do was suffocate him...

Mephiles loosened his grip just enough to allow breathing space, and Dark squirmed uncomfortably, wedging his hands between them and trying to push away again, giving a strained squeak, and shaking his head.

Mephiles gave an apprehensive sigh. This was going to be a while...

Iblis didn't know what think right now. He had spent the better part of ten minutes switching the bathroom light off and back on, growing more and more distressed and frantic with each flick.

"... C'mon... C'mon..." He huffed and slid his free hand through his quills anxiously. "... Anytime now..."

He became dimly aware that there was a scent of burning plastic, and his eyes quickly darted to his hand on the wall. It was on fire and was currently melting the plate, as the light switch was now a nub. He pulled his hand away, and stared at the translucent gooey mess that was stretching between his palm and the wall.

He smeared it on the wall in disgust, and punched the door with a scream, flinching when it bounced back and the edge of it smacked him square in the face.

"WHERE ARE YOU?" He barked in mild pain, clasping his hands just below the crystal coated marking on his forehead. He stomped his foot. "THIS ISN'T FUNNY! LITTLE BROTHER! HEDGEHOG!"

No one answered back. Iblis felt a creeping dread that he might actually be stranded here if neither of them returned (preferably together). His hands slid to his mouth, muffling his heavy breathing, though he didn't know why he bothered, as he was alone.

He was alone.

He was alone, for the first time since reuniting with Dark.

He was alone.

He was alone, and he didn't like it.

"... Dark... Mephiles..." He shuddered, sinking to the floor as a ringing, squealing noise filled his ears. He knew that it wasn't the room phone, and vaguely recalled the last time he had heard such a sound, prompting him to hold his breath and start counting in a feeble attempt to calm down. "... One... Two... Three..."

His vision twitched and blurred briefly before he squeezed his eyes shut. He was on fire.

"... Four... Five... Six... Please come back..."

He reached up at his ear flaps, seized them roughly and yanked. Any brief jolt of pain might just distract him long enough...

"... S-seven... Eight... N-nine... I-I need you..."

He didn't make it to ten before he broke down.

As expected, Dark had eventually petered out, and was now (more or less) leaning exhaustedly against Mephiles, torn right ear pressed against the hedgehog's chest, absentmindedly sucking on the knuckle of his own thumb. Mephiles could see that Dark's eyelids were droopy and that he stared off into the distance at nothing in particular (though, given their location, that was a given).

He had given up trying to fight off Mephiles, and had gotten unusually silent since he calmed down, however long ago it was, as Mephiles had no way to tell the time. Hearing his breathing pattern, if not for the fact that Mephiles could see Dark's half closed eyes, the hedgehog might have assumed that Dark was merely asleep.

... Chaos knows he needs it... Mephiles told himself wearily, calmly stroking Dark's back. ... Especially after just now...

Dark stirred and lifted his head slowly, looking up at Mephiles with a bleary expression, hand still pressed in his mouth. Had this been some other time, the hedgehog might have laughed a bit at this, but he was feeling far from amused at the moment.

They simply stared at each other for a while before Dark dropped his gaze and pressed his head against the hedgehog's chest again, exhaling heavily.

"... Ask you something..?" He mumbled, catching Mephiles off guard, as this was just about the most coherent thing Dark had said since they had been under that bed.

"... Sure, ask me anything."

There was a long pause before Dark said, without looking up: "... You're mine, right..?"

What odd wording. Mephiles pondered it briefly, wondering just exactly what it was supposed to mean.

"... Yeah, Dark. I'm yours."

"... And I'm yours, too, right..?" There was a hint of desperation in his tone.

"... Of course." Mephiles nodded lightly, resting his free hand on top of Dark's head.

"... Then why are you so intent on-" Dark didn't finish, as he felt Mephiles tense up. He looked up at the hedgehog, and frowned slightly at the unreadable look on Mephiles' face. Dark's jaw clenched and he looked away again. "... Whatever..."

"... Dark... Did I ever tell you what the last thing I said to her was..?"

Dark didn't answer, and intended on doing so for a while.

"... Because I really can't remember..."

Dark blinked and lifted his head just as something wet hit the back of his ear and rolled down it. Mephiles still had the same unreadable expression as before, except now with tears and flushed cheeks. The runny nose was not mixing well with the dried blood, and it gave off a rather gross appearance of diluted fruit punch draining from it. Dark stuck his tongue out slightly in disgust, wondering why he had to think of such an analogy... He quite enjoyed fruit punch, and that thought was going to put him off it for weeks, provided they ever got out of here.

His foul mood softened a bit at the sight of how distressed the hedgehog was, and he reached up to place his hands on either side of Mephiles' face, much to the confusion of the hedgehog.

"... What... What are you doing..?"

Dark stared at him intently, which was making him grow uneasy.

"... Stuh-stop that... I don't like it..." Mephiles whined, reaching up to pry him loose, having seemingly forgotten his moment of despair. "... C'mon, Daaaaaark..."

Dark smiled suddenly and pressed his forehead to Mephiles'.

"There's my hedgehog." He said with an almost playful tone, which honestly startled Mephiles, given how dismal the mood had been between them hardly even minutes ago.

"I haven't gone anywhere." Mephiles blinked, and grit his teeth. "Really, I can't understand you sometimes; you really confuse me..."

"... What do you mean by that? We're supposed to be emotionally linked, aren't we..?" Dark's smile faded and he appeared to be mildly distressed again as he pulled away.

"Of course, but I meant that you sometimes don't make much sense." Mephiles' mouth twitched at the corner a little. "One minute, you're screaming at and hitting me, the next, you're nuzzling me. It's such a drastic change so quickly, that I have a hard time keeping up..."

"I'm still upset with you, y'know." Dark huffed and lowered his hands, while Mephiles kept his on them.

"I'm sure you are." Mephiles sighed, tightening his grip on Dark's hands. "And I'm very sorry about that. I never intended to hurt you, ever."

"... It hurt a lot. I just wanted to disconnect my Emotions so I wouldn't feel that anymore..." Dark frowned and looked down. "... But Logic talked me out of it. Well, he did most of the talking, everyone else had their responses, but it was Parry's reaction that convinced me otherwise..." Seeing Mephiles' perplexed look, Dark added: "... I... I've never told you about the others, have I?"


"You remember Logic, right?"

"The you with glasses?"

"Yes. Well, he's not alone, there are others and they all handle a different emotion and aspect..." Dark looked up again, and explained all about the Emotions to the best of his abilities, and explained about why it was important to keep a "connection".

Mephiles teared up just as Dark finished revealing about the significance of "disconnection", and what it did in the long run.

"... Is that why you... you went cra-?" Mephiles cut himself off and cleared his throat. "... Um, I mean, is that why you... changed after we first met..?"

Dark's eyelids drooped sadly.

"... I was so distraught after losing Brother the first time, that I just thought it would be easier if I just didn't feel anymore." Dark heaved a heavy sigh, and gave a strained whisper. "... I was young and so inexperienced in the concept, that it had the unfortunate consequences that you're very much familiar with... I wasn't thinking clearly, and I... screwed up. I screwed up badly... And I almost made that mistake again..." He quivered a bit, feeling that sensation of misery building up again. "... Chaos, I'm so stupid..."

"No, you're not, Dark. You're like the smartest guy I know. And I know a lot of people." Mephiles tried to assure him, sensing his distress and tried to comfort him by wrapping his arms around Dark again. "Everybody screws up sometimes, it's a normal thing."

"Shutting off all sense of emotional interaction is not normal." Dark said flatly.

"No, I don't suppose it is." Mephiles gave a small snort. "But you're not the only one who's goofed big time."

"Oh, really? Name someone else."

"Well, there's Shadow." Mephiles said, hearing a low annoyed growl from Dark. "No, really. Like he's the reason we never have a full moon anymore. Or that time where he almost sold out the planet to aliens to get an answer to a really important question."

"You weren't even there for either of those..."

"Or when he took so long to finally trust you."

Dark fell silent, not sure of how to properly respond. He merely rested his head on Mephiles shoulder and hid his face in the hedgehog's quills.

"Dark, I just want you to remember something very important, okay?" Mephiles said calmly as he felt Dark nod slowly. "No matter what happens, you're my brother, and that means I'll always be here for you."

There was a slight noise of acknowledgement before Dark jolted and pulled back, staring at Mephiles as if he had indeed forgotten something important.

He swore and shouted, in a startled voice void of a growl: "Brother! Where's Brother! He's not here with us!"

Mephiles felt a sinking feeling in his heart when he realized that, even though the thought has crossed his mind, he actually hadn't considered that Iblis was currently alone, and likely frantic about their whereabouts.

"How long have we been here!" Dark's natural higher toned voice was trembling as he tried to feverishly shove away. "He hasn't been alone since he came back to me! We have to-!"

"We don't even know how we got here, much less where 'here' is!" Mephiles reasoned anxiously, keeping his hold on Dark. "As much as it's hard for me to say it, we really can't do anything right now!"

Dark clenched his teeth and muffled a scream, which came off as an semi-internal roar of anguish.

"... If it were me, you'd be doing everything you could..." He snarled in his lower pitched tone.

"Excuse me... Was-was that..? A-Are you implying th-th-that I don't care?" Mephiles stammered, taken aback. "I care juh-just as much as you d-do!"

"But you're not even-"

"What do you expect me to do!" Mephiles snapped back. "I'm stuck here, too! I have no idea where or when we are, and I have even less of a clue on how to get back to where we were! All I know is that you chomped my shoulder hard, and we ended up here! You've been hitting me, kicking me and screaming at me! My nose is all banged up and bloody because you decided to head butt me, I'm tired, scared, and trying to keep the both of us from having full blown panic attacks! But, by all means, go ahead! Tell me this is my fault! Tell me that I'm not helping!"

Dark simply stared, feeling somewhat guilty. Maybe he was overreacting... Mephy had just as much power here as he did, after all. But still, what he said earlier...

"... I thought it didn't matter where I came from..." Dark growled, eyes shimmering with angry tears.

Mephiles held his breath, and tensed up, quills and fur bristling. He chirped something in his native tongue, and shook his head before looking back at Dark, appearing quite forlorn.

"I'm sorry, okay? I... I don't know why I said that, and I'm sorry." He sniffled. "But, I really can't expect you to understand that, because it's never happened to you..."

"I lost Brother before." Dark mumbled.

"Yeah, but you got him back." Mephiles shook his head again, tears wetting his cheeks. "She's under a tree in the park in our time, along with Chinus and Ceus. I can't talk to her, I can't hug her or say that I love her. And now, we're in a time where she's still alive, and I know that she's there, but I can't do anything because we shouldn't be messing with this set of time! And when we finally get our chance for a Chaos Emerald, she's going to be gone before the thing even gets to Elise!" He inhaled sharply, biting down on his lip before continuing in a quiet tone. "You'll be counting down the days until we can get the Emerald, and I'll just be thinking about how I know when and how she's going to go, and how I can do absolutely nothing to stop it..."

Dark stared at him in mild comprehension. He logically understood the idea of it, but he really couldn't emotionally relate on the same level, no matter how hard he tried. His face scrunched in thought, furrowed his brow in thought and directed his gaze to the right and above them.

"... You... You're not sorry you met me... are you..?"

"Whuh-what!" Mephiles said loudly, eyes getting wide. "Why w-would you th-think that!"

"... Because, realistically, you'd never be in any of these messes if we never crossed paths..."

"What!" Mephiles half-shouted again, moving his hands to Dark's shoulders and giving them a brief shake. "No! No, no, no, no, no! Dark! Don't ever think that! You're my best friend! I love you!"

"Is that because you really believe that, or because you had no other choice at the time?"

Mephiles' face fell even more, and he gawked at Dark in disbelief.

"What has gotten into you!"

"Because, really, when you think about it..." Dark seemed to ignore his reaction. "You were stuck with no one but me for a decade. A great deal of that, I didn't treat you very well. You were scared of me, even. I essentially kidnapped you..."

"Dark, that's not-!"

"It's Stockholm's, really. You care about me because I made you do it..." Dark said heavily, still appearing oblivious to Mephiles' growing apprehension. "As Dire said, I'm really nothing more than a paras-"


Dark didn't get to finish, as Mephiles had taken to giving him a good slap upside the head.

Perhaps it was because he was so stunned, that he simply stared off in the distance in the direction his head had been turned from the impact, trying to wrap his mind around what just happened.

Did... Mephy just hit him? As back as he could recall, this had never happened before (to his knowledge), Mephy had never hit him before, what was going on, everything was falling apart...

He placed a hand on the stinging part of his cheek, and turned his head to look back at Mephiles, who looked just as shocked.

"I-I-I'm s-s-sorry, Duh-Dark!" He squeaked, stuttering problem just as bad as it ever was. "B-but you were s-saying st-st-stuff th-that wasn't r-right!"

"... You... hit me..?" Dark seemed more confused rather than upset or angry, as one might expect him to be.

"Whether it stuh-started out like th-th-that or not, it duh-doesn't matter now!" Mephiles put the hand he had used to slap Dark, back on his shoulder. He inhaled sharply and grit his teeth, trying to control his stuttering. "I-I'm still here! And I want you here with me! Because I want to!"

"... You... hit me..." This was more of a statement than a question like the last time. "... You actually hit me."

"I'm sorry! I just couldn't get through to you! It's not like that at all!"

Dark stared at him for a while before cracking a weak smile, giggling. Mephiles' quills and fur bristled even more, giving the impression of being made of pipe cleaners. Dark laughed even more, perhaps the most he had done so in months. He leaned against Mephiles, letting his arms drape over the hedgehog's shoulders.

"Oh, geeze... What have I done..?" Mephiles said with a hint of horror.

Dark kept laughing, dissolving into wheezy breaths as he wiped at his eyes.

"... You're scaring me even more, Dark..."

Dark raised an arm and waved it halfheartedly as he snorted.

"Sorry (heh!), but you (*snerk*) have no idea how good that (ha ha!) felt!" He squeaked, trying to keep his voice low.

"... Oh, my Chaos, I must have hit you too hard." Mephiles' ears flattened against his head.

"No, no. I don't think (*cough*) you actually understand." Dark pulled away to look at Mephiles face-to-face. "You did that on (heh!) your own! Not because you're afraid of me (*pfft*), but because you care!"

The lowered eyebrows gave Mephiles' eyes an almost squared off shape. He chirped something in his native tongue angrily, perhaps cursing at Dark.

"- I could have told you that myself!"

"No, that's the thing about it: You really can't in that situation."

"I don't know what you're talking about, you are seriously driving me crazy!"

"Hey, I hope I'm not interrupting anything important right now!"

This came from neither of them.

Dark and Mephiles shot each other startled looks before snapping their attentions to the source in unison.

An older hedgehog, perhaps in his twenties, was there with them. Brown furred with lighter brown markings, tufted, white chested, wearing sandals, an odd orange pendant and black, fingerless gloves that were held to his thin wrists with gray bands. He was smiling nervously, waving awkwardly, eyes shut. Neither Dark nor Mephiles could place it, but something was very familiar about him.

Peering over his shoulder was a younger gray... Hedgehog? It was difficult to decide what species exactly, but she clearly had characteristics of one. She had tan inner ears and muzzle, darker gray scruff of fur on her head, and the tufts of fur at the base of her head were tied up like pigtails. She was wearing blue slip-on shoes, a shirt of a matching color, and dark blue shorts. She had earbuds jammed into her ears, with the cord trailing to a backpack she was carrying. Her eyes were a sort of blue-green color, and again... something familiar about them.

"Hiya!" She said brightly and loudly (likely over the music that Mephiles could hear buzzing over the earphones), sliding halfway over the brown hedgehog's left shoulder, to where she was draped over it, and half blocking the hedgehog's view. "I'm Kole! Nice to see ya!"

Dark was silent, and stared intently at the pair.

Mephiles was still startled, but he didn't want to be rude.

"... Uh... H-hi..?"

"I'm eight, how old are you?"

"... Eh... Ah-about twelve..? We haven't actually d-decided..."

"Wow, I bet you're really tough then!" Kole's eyes got big with amazement. She lifted her head to look at the brown hedgehog. "Were you tough when you were twelve, Phee?"

"I'm hardly even tough now, Kole." "Phee" laughed weakly.

Dark had already inhaled audibly, as if realizing something, but that turned to a sharp gasp when Phee finally opened his eyes.

"OH, NO WAY IN FLAME CORE!" Dark shouted, almost angrily, causing a collective flinch to ripple through the small group.

"... Dark, you're being a bit rude..." Mephiles looked at him incredulously.

Dark grabbed him by the face and turned the hedgehog's head sharply, making him look at the pair in front of them.

"... Dark, I really don't-"

"Are you blind, look at him!"

"... I am, and I don't see-"

"You Stupid Hedgehog, do I have to spell it out?" Dark snapped at Mephiles, rolling his eyes. "That. Is. You."

Mephiles blinked.

"What?" He said flatly. "No... He's brown, not blue. And his eyes are normal. And he doesn't have crystals."

"There is a scar like yours, the eyes don't have visible pupils, those markings and tufts are way too similar!" Dark waved a hand wildly in front of them. "The eye shape is identical, and the white fur is combed the same way you do yours!"

"That's really not a viable way to identify-"

"That is YOUR Chaos Aura!"

"... Well, I'm sure that in the infinite amount of those possessing a Chaos Aura, there's bound to be simi-"

"No, actually, he's right." Phee said, holding his hands up and shrugging.

"Oh, okay then... What!" Mephiles' jaw dropped and his quills bristled again. "No, seriously, what the heck is going on!"

"Well, what part of this would you like to hear first..?"

Before Mephiles could respond, Dark interjected: "If you're him, then where am I!"

Dark was giving a very distrusting look at Kole as he said this. Mephiles noticed this and shook his head lightly, mouthing: "She's a little kid..."

Phee groaned apprehensively, looking as though he would rather not answer that right now, and he clearly took his time to decide how to respond.

"We're lookin' for ya!" Kole said before Phee got the chance. "Where we're from, you kinda went POOF and didn't come back!" She imitated a puff of cloud or something with her hands, as if that helped explaining. "Phee and me are trying to find you, and here you are!"

"He's not our Dark, Kole..." Phee shook his head, sighing.

"And where is Brother!"

Phee absentmindedly reached for the pendant on the twine around his neck, and twiddled his fingers around it.

"... Well, let's just say that he didn't take you disappearing too-"

"He's in that!" Kole said loudly, pointing to the pendant.

"Kole, I swear to Solaris, if you don't stop, I'm turning around and taking you back home!" Phee put a hand to his forehead.

"Nuh-uh! You can't do this without me!" Kole stuck her tongue out.

Dark now seemed angry to the point of tears, and he was shaking a little.

"Why would you do that to him!"

"Oh, no! It's not like what you think!" Phee shook his head frantically. "This is keeping him from burning out! After you disappeared, it didn't react well with him, and we could have lost him too!" He lifted the pendant from his neck and wrapped the twine securely around his fingers, then held it out. "See? Touch it, he's right there, and he's totally fine, aside from what I just said!"

Mephiles made to reach for it, but Dark grabbed his arm and pulled it away forcefully.

"I'm not letting him touch anything I don't trust..." He growled, eyeing the item carefully. "What is that made of?"

"An artificial Chaos Emerald shard."

"Which is just about the most unstable material you can use... We could get sick by touching those!"

"Maybe in your time, but in our time, the process in making them has been more refined, and are far more stable than before; they practically resemble the real things almost perfectly. It's great for creating shards without actually damaging the real Emeralds." Phee explained, smiling weakly. "They figured out how to reduce the bad side effects. They can actually make red ones that don't drive you crazy or hurt me, purple pieces I can carry around when I want... They can even make them in new colors now. We had this made in orange because Iblis always wanted an Emerald to exist in his Aura color."

Mephiles lifted his other hand before Dark could respond, and touched the shard.

"Mephy! That was completely id-"

"He's actually there!" Mephiles looked at Dark in astonishment, causing the shadow to stammer to a halt. "I feel his Aura!"

"Well, I'm sure that in the infinite-"

"Oh, you are not using that bit right now." Mephiles snapped at him irritably. "If I couldn't, you can't."

"... Fair enough."

"So... If you're me, and we know about what happened with Dark and Iblis..." Mephiles looked at Phee and pulled his hand from the pendant. "Then who exactly is Kole?"

Kole scoffed in almost an offended way, pouting slightly.

"Well, of course you won't actually know her for quite a while..." Phee said, scratching behind his ear. "But... Well... I guess to put it as simply as I can-"

"You're like my big brothers!" Kole blurted out, earning an annoyed sidewise glance from Phee.

"Kole, I'm serious, let me talk, this is very delicate stuff we're dealing with!"

"You take too long to tell stuff!" Kole kicked her feet leisurably, sticking her tongue out again.

"We're her what..?" Dark frowned a bit, continuing to stare intently at the pair.

Phee looked at Kole, as if half-expecting her to continue for him, but was met with silence, so he continued.

"See, quite some time from when you're from, Kole is born. And she-"

"Oh, my Chaos! I get it now! She looks just like Shadow and Rouge!" Mephiles was the one to blurt out before Phee could finish, prompting the older hedgehog to smack his own forehead in frustration.

"You too? Am I ever gonna finish explaining one thing before I get interrupted..?"

"How can she look like both of them at the same time, Mephy? They're hardly similar enough to-"

"Of course, you really don't completely understand genetics, do you, Dark?" Mephiles shook his head lightly.

"I understand plenty of things, thank you very much!"

"No, I mean she's their kid!"

"They've already got us, what do they need more kids for?"

"No, Dark, she's their actual kid!"

Dark's expression stayed frozen for a good minute or so before he blinked, and looked at Phee.

"What? Did we get... replaced?"

"Oh, geeze, of course not!" The older hedgehog seemed appalled, and he waved his hands in front of himself, as if to shoo the thought away. "No! It wasn't like that at all! I mean, granted, at first, Dark, you weren't very keen on the idea of another new face to the family, especially one who was probably going to probably make you share me..." Phee laughed weakly, giving another nervous smile. "You didn't talk to anyone for two weeks, just to mess with us."

It was rather odd to be hearing of what he would likely do some time in the future, and hearing it spoken in the past tense was almost disorienting. Dark held a hand to his face, ring and pinky finger curled lightly over his snout as he exchanged a brief look with Mephiles, who gave a nervous smile similar to Phee's, which only disoriented Dark more as he struggled to make his brain adjust to this new information he had been given.

"... I'm sorry, but this is a little too much for me right now..." Dark said in an oddly polite tone. "... I think I had a bit of a nervous breakdown before you showed up, and I'm honestly drained from all this, both emotionally and physically..."

"To be honest, you're taking this a lot better than I had expected..." Phee admitted, nodding slowly.

Teaching Darkness: Rift C6
Honestly, there was a bit more here, but I moved it to the next chapter in order to give y'all a chance to really think about what's happening here... :P
Tumblr Doodle - Dark is Upset by RaeLogan
Tumblr Doodle - Dark is Upset
Unoriginal title is unoriginal :P

Anyway, I'm quite a bit pleased with this. I think I finally managed to more or less make an image where we can see just how upset Dark can look (minus the dribbly nose, as I have yet to find a proper way to do that without seeming out of place).

Because Mephy has that selective empathy thing (where he can feel what Dark does), poor Mephy isn't having the easiest time trying to calm him down. :(
Tumblr Doodle - Scrawny, Scruffy Men of Science by RaeLogan
Tumblr Doodle - Scrawny, Scruffy Men of Science
This is the image for a question on the Crystal Hedgehog Boys blog, where they were asked as what they had planned to dress up as for Halloween before the weather canceled it for them. Basically, as a theme as the scrawny, scruffy men of science, because that's like my most favorite character design base.

Dark is Okabe Rintarou from "Steins;Gate", Mephy is Prof Sycamore from "Pokemon X and Y", and Iblis is Rick Sanchez from "Rick and Morty"... with apple juice because he's a kid. :P

Y'all probably know Rick and Sycamore pretty well, but I'm not exactly sure if Okabe is as well known as those two, so I highly recommend that you watch "Steins;Gate", especially the dub, as it's done so by Funimation, and it's just awesome. Here's a trailer for it:…

But yeah... enjoy this image of the Boys. :P
Dark Doodle Dump 003 by RaeLogan
Dark Doodle Dump 003
Just a handful of doodles for you guys

The top middle one is supposed to be Dark in the rain, though
  1. How long have you been on DeviantArt? - 9 years. More specifically, about 7 months longer than Sonic 06 has existed. :p

  2. What does your username mean? - "RaeLogan" was a username I picked for myself back when I was deep in the Teen Titans craze when I was 15. It's my OTP, Raven and Beast Boy, with "Rae" being short for Raven, and "Logan" being Beast Boy's last name. It also ended up being my pen name and psuedonymn.

  3. Describe yourself in three words. - "Dorky", "Odd" and "Friendly"

  4. Are you left or right handed? - Right. My mother is a Southpaw, and she thought until I was 12 that I was one too, so I tend to make characters who share the lefty trait. :p

  5. What was your first deviation? - This old thing in MS Paint, which was a proto-version of a guinea pig character I have for a personal set of characters of mine. Done with a mouse and saved in good old jpeg format!~

  6. What is your favourite type of art to create? - That depends on what you could call "art". I enjoy drawing, but I also like to write and I have recently taken up knitting... really, I like anything that gives a face and some life into my ideas.

  7. If you could instantly master a different art style, what would it be? - What I would give to be able to draw semi-realistic animals... ^^;

  8. What was your first favourite? This Harry Potter/Lion King thing. I actually forgot about this...

  9. What type of art do you tend to favourite the most? - Fanart

  10. Who is your all-time favourite deviant artist? - Really putting me on the spot, are you? Too many to say, but chances are, if I have you on watch or favorited a great deal from you (but somehow missed hitting that watch button), then I like your art a lot. 

  11. If you could meet anyone on DeviantArt in person, who would it be? - I... dunno..? Maybe NetRaptor, as her Sonic-verse is what really got me into wanting to create my own and tackle making fanfiction so many years ago. I seriously love her version of Metal Sonic, and the world her stories take place in. She is... for lack of a better term, what I would call "senpai", though she's already noticed me, so I don't have to hope for that. :p 

  12. How has a fellow deviant impacted your life? - Y'all are wonderful, and the sheer fact that you guys look at my stuff, leave comments, make fanart, and talk to me is way more than what Pre-15 year old me could have ever hoped for.

  13. What are your preferred tools to create art? - I like to use whatever I can get my hands on, but my favorite methods are colored pencils (with or without markers), MS Paint with my tablet, or this one outdated GIMP program (because I didn't like the interface of the newer one) with my tablet

  14. What is the most inspirational place for you to create art? - Oddly, I seem to have gotten my best ideas just out of nowhere.

  15. What is your favourite DeviantArt memory? - That one time someone bought me a 3 Month Premium Subscription to DA for Christmas, and did so anonymously. I never got to thank them personally. I'm still blown away that someone I have never really met would do something so nice for me. :aww:

  • Mood: Jolly
  • Watching: The Bad Creepypasta on YouTube
  • Drinking: Water out of a TMNT Water Bottle

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Sonicthebitch Featured By Owner Nov 11, 2015
Still getting good
RaeLogan Featured By Owner Oct 24, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Yikes. So it could have been... But then it didn't fit.

"They're dead."

Ouch, Flynn. Seriously, ouch, dude. Way to kill a dream, man. O_O
Herman-da-German Featured By Owner Oct 24, 2015
Awww. *patpat* ^^;
Sandvich33 Featured By Owner Oct 2, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Is there any chance you've played the NES bootleg demake of Sonic dubbed Somari?
RaeLogan Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I believe so. I kinda like playing bootlegs/mods/hacks, so this one seems familiar. It's basically Mario in place of Sonic, right? In a badly ported game of Sonic 1? XD
Sandvich33 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
That'd be correct.
Josiah-Shockency-JCS Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2015  Hobbyist Artist
Guess who!? 
RaeLogan Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Ah, hello. :D
Josiah-Shockency-JCS Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2015  Hobbyist Artist
bEEN SO lONG Hasn't it? 
RaeLogan Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Sure has. Whatcha been up to?
b1uewhirlwind Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2015  Student General Artist
Thanks for the fave! :D (Big Grin) 
BlazedSilver Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Hey Rae, I was wounding if you have any knowledge on metal overdrive after the conflicted writer got mugged. It's such a great fan fic and I really hate for it to end like that so if you have anything to go by after chapter 44 that would be splendid.

All I really have is this wiki…

And also this comment by GammaTron…

If not then thanks for your help anyways.
RaeLogan Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Not much info. Poor TCW lost the interest in finishing the story after his laptop was jacked, and the guy who took it said that he was going to lie and say that he was being mugged by him instead and all that. Really tragic, as that's gotta be trying and terrifying for TCW... :(
redsnivy Featured By Owner Edited Jun 27, 2015
please don't hate me but i have tagged you...i'm running out of people to tag...check my journal
RaeLogan Featured By Owner Jun 27, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Ah, I'm sorry though... I rarely do tagged things for... Reasons. ^^;
redsnivy Featured By Owner Jun 27, 2015
Its okay i just tagged random people.
GeminiGoat Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Happy Birthday
Joeycool1210 Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2015
Happy birthday.
StaricoHoshi Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Happy Birthday!
Herman-da-German Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2015
So, it's your birthday and I thought... well, let's try and turn one of King Meteor's MIDIs of Mephiles' theme through the awesome FM- and PSG-power that is the Sega Genesis' Z80 sound chip. ... with mild success, I guess?…

(fun fact, this means I got a file on my hard drive a hacker could literally use to actually put that into Sonic 1.)
birthdays Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2015
:woohoo: :party: :iconcakelickplz: !!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY !!! :iconcakelickplz: :party: :woohoo:

It's June 12th which means it's that time of the year again and your special day is here! We hope you have an awesome day with lots of birthday fun, gifts, happiness and most definitely, lots of cake! Here's to another year!

Many well wishes and love from your friendly birthdays team :love:

Birthdays Team
This birthday greeting was brought to you by: silber-englein
Jasperinity Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2015
Happy birthday! :D
alternatereality360 Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
happy birthday
Shadowasexybeast Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2015
:lemonparty: birthday cake Five Nights at Freddys 2- Chicas Cupcake -Icon GIF HAPPY BIRTHDAYFive Nights at Freddys 2- Chicas Cupcake -Icon GIF birthday cake
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