A sorry and a cover up wasn’t quite going to do the ticket to alleviate Shadow’s worries on what he had been thinking. The ebony hedgehog had been watching his expression mold and change into something ugly, and he hadn’t missed Amy’s distressed expression as well. He knew there was resentment that the little fox was covering up and so much pain that was tormenting the pink hedgehog. He wanted to steal away those negative emotions, and yet he knew he couldn’t, because he was feeling so many himself.
I wish I was Sonic, that’s what I want.
He would know how to help the both of them far more than he ever could. Amy, with her wringing hands and her crying eyes and her bitten lips. There was no doubt in his mind that she was tormented with awful dreams, memories of him, reminding her and taunting her ever so much that she would never be able to have him in any way. And then the little fox, who was saved from bullying by his big hero — now who was he supposed to be? Where was he supposed to reach and aim for?
This was ignoring his own lamentations.
“I will protect to the best of my abilities,” he murmured, tone staying the same. “That is what I have been designed for.” And that was all there was to say. At least Tails wasn’t looking at him like a machine.
What he’d been designed for.
There was something haunting there in the way he’d said it so easily. He’d been organic once, like them - 100 percent so, anyways. She could hardly remember the time when there were two red eyes to sneak peeks at, when there were two furry arms, when his chest fur wasn’t interrupted with awkward placement of metal. Tails’d done a wonderful job fixing the hog up, but still… the mindset wasn’t healthy.
Then again, are any of us really mentally healthy anymore? Not since Sonic…
But thinking about Sonic brought her back to that place she didn’t like, with the heavy heart and the nights she’d cried herself to sleep. She looked away from the boys, the bite on her lip closer and closer to drawing blood.
Close it all in.
“…I can still adopt,” she spluttered. “I’ll raise a little hedgehog and name him Sonic. It’s… not what I’d always dreamed of, but it’s better than nothing. You two could be the uncles that’ll be the strong male role models my baby will need.”
“…in the future, I mean,” she shuffled. She wasn’t in any mental state to have anyone leaning on her for life.
Tails looked at Amy quickly and padded over to her, one of his tails grazing her leg. “Amy, you don’t need to think that far ahead,” he said, looking a little nervous himself. None of us are ready for that sort of commitment. Then again, she’s always wanted that sort of thing. A family, something domestic. Sonic was always on the go…I don’t know if he would have settled down for something like that, at least not right now.
Besides, having another Sonic could be too close…
“I guess whenever you’re ready, though. You have our support.” He felt the need to emphasize this, perhaps even just for himself. Support, support, support. Something. Something for these sleepless nights, these endless days, nothing but work. Are we…
…are we trying to get him back? Am I?
“We just need to focus on the right now,” he chirped, putting on a brave face. If only I could believe it myself. “And what we can do to help the military form their counterattack.” But, even I don’t know when they’re going to do that…the Commander hasn’t said anything about it. Maybe it’s too soon? Too strong?
Words, words, words. Too many words, so many words, words. He wasn’t going to use them himself, that would be too many. There was already a surplus.
“We’ve still got… each other” no no NO. They had each other. Did they have Shadow? He doubted it, because they both wanted Sonic. They always had wanted Sonic, and Shadow was always second place. Always would be.
The turmoil going on in the cyborg’s head was completely masked by his expression, which was, by all senses, completely flat. There was no grief, there was no hidden message. It was devoid of anything aside from dedication to those who were still alive. He honestly wanted to yank on Tails’s ear for staring at him so much. “Mm,” was his only acknowledgment of the words spoken aloud.
His expressions had intrigued her since the day Tails’ wildly inventive nature had saved his life. Everything was different about him now, and she could hardly remember when his shoulder was soft and fuzzy, warm, alive, hedgehog. A tiny, minuscule bite of her lip trapped any of her thoughts. Something told her bringing up his new state wasn’t the best way to let fresh wounds close.
Fresh wounds… the sinking in her stomach that she’d long attributed with Sonic was back again, as it always was whenever she thought of him. It was especially strong when she woke up in the middle of the night, torn from a dream where he was reaching for her hand in marriage. She was absolutely pathetic, even after all of this time.
“…Right, of course! We have each other forever,” she paused, her mouth dry. “I won’t let anyone else slip away.”
“Yeah,” Tails replied absentmindedly. His mind was churning.
I have to finish up that land rover thing for the Commander by tonight, and it’s still needs a lot more time. I don’t know if I have enough parts for it. Plus, there’s a couple other things that I’m working on for myself, powering up the Tornado, and a better monitor for Shadow. Right, then his maintenance too, although he appears to be doing all right. He’s adopted pretty well
(he was there when he died)
to all of the foreign parts,
(why how did he come out alive when Sonic died)
probably because of his creation
(it should have been him he could have died and then Sonic could have lived why it should have been HIM)
on the ARK. It’s pretty, handy, anyway.
He shook his head, realizing his face had molded into a scowl. “Sorry, just thinkin’ about some projects I’ve got to do.” He looked from Amy to Shadow, actually looking at Shadow this time, as a hedgehog and not a robot, right into his eyes. When he met his real one, a steely red, one tail flinched guiltily. I should be glad that even Shadow’s here. But, Sonic…
He said nothing in response. There was a nod, of course, acknowledging the apology, but nothing other than that.
He didn’t speak much nowadays.
She never realized how much she liked the sound of his voice until she stopped hearing. It was soothing, in a way. He’d been soothing to her. He’d been a good friend, a shoulder to rely on.
“I know it’s dumb of me to get so worked up over it, but… oh, never mind.”
“N-no, it’s okay Amy, we…we all miss him.” Tails blinked rapidly for a moment, his face in a solemn grimace. I miss him, too. I miss him so much, his encouragement, his cheery grin, just him being around. I wish the last thing I remembered of him wasn’t…wasn’t that…
He swallowed and put on a more believable smile, his tails wrapping to the front of his body. “We’ve still got…each other, right?” He looked to Shadow, unconsciously examining his robotic parts for any awry movement, his eyes calculating. When was the last time I did general maintenance on him? I’m losing track of the days.
“You’re the best I know with the robots, Tailsie.”
He grinned, and his tails flicked happily. “Thanks, Amy. I’ve gotten a lot better with stuff since I’ve been working with GUN, and working on Shadow. Do you think S—”
He stopped himself short. Do you think Sonic would have liked it? was what he was going to say, and his ears immediately folded down. Maybe…he would have. It still hurts…and it’ll hurt worse for her.
Tail’s throat closed up, and he couldn’t find it in him to finish his sentence anyway. Instead, his tried to keep up his faltering smile, and his namesakes wrapped around him protectively. He nodded to her and looked right up to Amy with tired eyes.
“Hm, well, I have a lot more experience with robots, than dinosaurs, so I’ll go with that. I’ve been building a lot more robots lately, to help out with GUN.” Speaking of which, I’ve got a deadline to meet. His tails flick with some anxiety.