No Hope

He will love and fight her

"What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures."

-James 4:1-3

Bolton had no idea why he was trying to catch up with that stupid hedgehog. The animal hadn't done a thing for them yet. He had only made Agent R more furious, and was probably hunting them because of it. His speed used to be useful, but now, it was just a perk. If he wasn't trained like Tails or the other GUN troopers, he was useless. They had gone on too long for someone new to come in and mess it all up. And that was what that hedgehog was doing, messing things up. Bolton was out here, alone, trying to hunt down the fastest thing alive with dropships, fighters, and swat-bots everywhere. This was a suicide run, and he knew it. Nothing made sense to him right now.

Even with the rays of sunshine breaking through the storm clouds above the city, Bolton could still see very little. The fog had rolled in once again, keeping the bottom half of his body covered in the water vapor. There was no breeze to cool him down in his tactical gear. It was tiring, and his nervousness was getting the best of him. But strangely enough, there was no roar of fighters, or clanking of swat-bots. It appeared that the entire city was empty. But Bolton knew that inside this city, was a blue hedgehog, and he needed to find him. Bolton had no idea where to look though. There were no tracks, not a thing that would lead him to Sonic. The only thing around him was a destroyed city.

"Damn it." Bolton sighed, scratching his skullcap

Without any swat-bots nearby, Bolton relaxed a little. He walked along casually, looking around. He held his lowered assault rifle in one hand and his other hand was on his belt. He looked around, taking in the scenery. The destroyed buildings and cars were depressing sights. Bolton walked by one burnt car. He stretched out his neck to look inside. All he saw was a burnt skeleton still holding onto the steering wheel. Bolton shrugged and looked back up to walk away. But then, a thought came into his head.

"I wonder if she made it out okay." He said quietly to himself

Bolton knew such thoughts were poison, and quickly suppressed the feelings he had. That was one thing he did well as a soldier. He suppressed his feelings and made himself a killer. He shook his head quickly, removing the dangerous thoughts. He raised his rifle and narrowed his eyes.

"Alright, enough bullshit, let's find that rodent." He said

Bolton picked up the pace, jogging up to the next intersection. He stopped just under the flickering streetlight. He scanned the streets, looking for something, anything to tell him where Sonic had run off to. Running. That was something he remembered Sonic doing to Amy all those months ago. He remembered how whenever Sonic and his friends saved the world, she would be the first to hug him. Bolton could see how her hugs got annoying. That must have been why he ran from her so much.

Bolton continued to look around, but saw nothing. He decided to go straight and head down the street some more. He checked his corners and continued walking along. He searched around, scanning and inspecting every detail, looking for a sign. But he found nothing. Then, suddenly, he heard something. It sounded like the crumbling on rocks. Bolton spun his head to the left and saw a dark blue figure sprinting up the rubble of what had once been an apartment. The figure was moving faster than anything he had ever seen. One thought came to his mind.

"Sonic." He whispered, running for the figure

Bolton sprinted for the figure and slung his assault rifle, getting ready to climb the rubble.

"Hey you!" he yelled

The figure stopped at the top of the rubble and turned around. Although it was quite a distance, Bolton was able to make out the features of the figure. The figure was a hedgehog with large blue quills on its back. It was definitely Sonic. His target. Bolton rushed faster to reach the hedgehog. He grabbed onto the first piece of rubble and started climbing. All his rock climbing training from basic came into effect at this point. Bolton scurried up the mountain faster than both he and Sonic thought. Sonic noticed and sprinted off out of sight.

"Wait!" Bolton called, "I'm here to talk to you!"

Bolton finally made it up to the top of the rubble and looked around. The blue streak of Sonic's body was fading away, but still visible. He huffed and began running, following the trail of blue. Bolton ran as fast as he could with his gear on. He jumped over rocks, weaved through destroyed rooms, crawled through holes, and climbed over rubble. He would do anything to find that hedgehog. He continued running as fast as he could, following the trail of blue as closely as possible. After a couple minutes of pursuing his target, Bolton finally spotted Sonic. The blue devil had just jumped up onto a broken pillar, and was looking back at him. From Bolton's point of view, it appeared that Sonic's eyes were bloodshot and pinkish. It looked as if he had been crying. Sonic just stood there, watching the GUN trooper get closer to him. Bolton heaved himself over a rock and was closer to Sonic.

"Wait up!" he cried, "I'm here to talk!"

There was a brief moment of silence before Sonic let out a hoarse cry.

"Don't follow me! I want to be alone!" Sonic yelled

Bolton didn't know what he meant. It sounded ominous and regretful. He didn't pay attention and continued on. Sonic noticed and turned to run off again.

"Why can't this all stop?" He asked himself, running away

Sonic sprinted off, running as far away from Bolton as possible. He ran around corners, dodged pillars and rubble piles, and never let up. He was going to lose that soldier if it was the last thing he did. But as Sonic ran, he began to realize he didn't know where he was. Nothing looked familiar. The world looked so hostile and cold. There was nothing to tell him where firebase phoenix was. Sonic turned his head around to see if Bolton was following him. To his luck, the world behind him was desolate and void. Sonic skidded to a halt. He looked around frantically. He was out of breath and needed a place to rest his still sore leg. He spun around, not seeing any place to hide. But then, he saw something. A wooden door. It looked like it was attached to the remains of an apartment flat.

"That'll do." He said

Sonic jogged over to the door and tested the lock. It was open. Sonic entered and closed the door behind him. He rested against the door and closed his eyes. A comforted expression grew on his face.

"Ahh, finally away from that guy." He sighed

Sonic opened his eyes and looked around. What he saw however, was not what he wanted. The apartment flat he had entered was not a flat at all, but a bedroom. The windows were shattered, and the slight breeze blew the drapes a little. Rays from the outside sun were the only light sources inside the room. But in this room, was a double bed. The sheets were messed up, and underwear and other clothes were strewn across the floor. Sonic slowly took a few steps inside, cracking the broken glass under his shoes.

"Looks like they were having a good time." He chuckled nervously

Sonic walked up to the bed and sat down slowly on it. He looked over at the bedside table, which had something on it. It was a tiny box. Sonic knew what it was. His eyes, which were already stinging from all his tears, began to well up again. With a shaking hand, he slowly reached out and grabbed the box. He held his breath as he opened it. Nothing was inside. He sighed and threw it across the room. But this did not do anything to relieve him of his emotions. Thoughts of Amy and her old loving nature were swirling around in his head. He couldn't get her sweet voice and image out of his thoughts. No matter what he did, she was in his mind, and the thoughts of what could have been. The ideas of what he and Amy could have done if he had only told her the truth was killing him.

"Why didn't I tell her?" he asked himself, his voice shaking from the tears

Sonic put his elbows on his knees and rested his face in his hands. And then, he cried. For the first time in years, Sonic cried. It wasn't like the few tears he had in the past. He let it all out. He cried, and cried, and cried. He let it all out, not holding anything back. Sonic just sat there and cried, letting out all the emotions he had stored inside of him. This dark empty room and its walls were the only things to witness his despair. He was alone, and able to let out his feelings of sadness and loneliness. All of this helped. The steady stream of tears and moaning lasted for a good long time. And it was relieving for him. But like all things, it had to come to an end. Sonic suddenly heard a knocking sound come from the door. He looked up just in time to see the door kicked down by a combat boot. He watched in horror and awaited what would come next. The light from the sun shown into the room, and then, Bolton walked in. His figure was skewed from the light, but Sonic could make him out.

"Sonic?" Bolton asked

Sonic jumped to his feet and was ready to run again. Bolton saw him and put his hands up. He couldn't clearly make out Sonic in the shadows, but he knew he had to handle this situation carefully. Bolton put down his assault rifle and kept his hands up.

"Look, Sonic, no weapons. I just want to talk." Bolton coaxed

Sonic wiped his nose and sniffled.

"Get away, I don't want your help." He growled

Bolton took a step forward.

"Yes you do. I know it." He said slowly

Sonic watched as the trooper took a couple slow steps towards him.

"Nobody can help me right now, nobody, not you, not Tails, nobody." Sonic said, stepping back

Bolton knew he had to make this work. An idea came to his head, and he decided to execute it. He reached the bed and sat down slowly. He sighed and took off his headset.

"That's what Eggman wants you to think." Bolton said

Sonic's bloodshot eyes expanded when Bolton said this. What was he getting at here? Despite his better judgment, Sonic sat down next to Bolton. He wiped away more tears and looked down.

"What are you…? What are you talking about?" he asked, looking up at Bolton

Bolton frowned and pulled out a rag from his medic pouch. He gave the cloth to Sonic and exhaled. He watched as Sonic wiped away the tears and blew his nose. When he was finished, Bolton scratched his head.

"I'm saying, you're following his plan like a puppet."

Sonic frowned.

"H-how so?" he asked

Bolton stared at his eyes and nodded slightly.

"Because you're tearing yourself apart because you saw her again." Bolton explained

"No I'm not! I'm stronger than that!" Sonic exclaimed

Sonic knew that was a lie. Bolton gave him a pitiful expression and chuckled.

"You're right. You are stronger than that. But you're not acting like it."

Sonic was beginning to get angry.

"Well you don't understand! You don't know what it's like to lose the love of your life. What would you know about being strong in a time like this?" Sonic accused

In his mind, Sonic had won already. Nobody could ever go through his emotional trauma. He knew not even a GUN trooper had gone through what he was going through.

"Yes I do know what it's like." Bolton sighed

Sonic jerked his head in surprise.

"N-no you don't." Sonic stuttered

Bolton swallowed hard and looked down. A frown grew on his face. He reached for one of the pouches on his gear and opened it. He pulled out a torn, dirty, and stained photo. It was a picture of a woman in a pink sun dress. Her dirty blonde hair was flying behind her. She had a cheerful smile on her face. Normally, Sonic would have just said, "Nice girl." But there was something different about this one. This woman looked a lot like Francesca! The nurse who had helped him for those months! Sonic couldn't believe it. He looked at the photo, and then at Bolton. His eyes grew wide with amazement. Bolton noticed Sonic's strange expression.

"What?" he asked

Sonic quickly pulled off his glove, revealing the picture Francesca had given him. He held it up next to Bolton. The two men looked identical. Sonic dropped the photo and let his mouth hang open. He couldn't believe it. The man sitting next to him was Tom, the husband of Francesca. Sonic didn't think it was possible. How could this even be happening? Sonic didn't know what to say. Anything he thought just got caught in his mouth. There were no words he could say. He just sat there, staring at the husband of Francesca. Sonic didn't realize it, but from that point on, he was going to protect that man with his life.

"Sonic?" Bolton asked again, a little more confused

Sonic swallowed hard and shook himself out of his trance. He looked down at the photo and then back up at Bolton again.

"Yo-your name is Tom, isn't it?"

Bolton pulled his head back a little in surprise. A suspicious expression grew on his face. Sonic's face was strange and confusing.

"Yeah… why?" he replied cautiously

Sonic opened his mouth to tell Bolton the revelation, but just as he was about speak, they both heard a scream of terror come from outside. It was the sound of a man desperately calling for help. The screams were coming from the windows. Bolton and Sonic spun around and looked out to the windows.

"Come on!" Bolton exclaimed

He put on his headset and grabbed his assault rifle. Sonic nodded and put on his glove. He hid the photo in it and jumped up. They both ran for the windows and stopped to see what was going on. Sonic and Bolton both scanned the area, frantically looking for where the screams of terror were coming from. Sonic didn't see anything. His mind was still on the fact that Bolton was Francesca's husband. However, Bolton was a soldier. He lived and thought in the moment. Within seconds, he spotted the origin of the screams.

"Over there!" he yelled, pointing at the intersection of the road below them

Sonic looked where Bolton was pointing. He didn't see anything. But before he could ask Bolton where it was, Bolton was already running out of the room with assault rifle raised. Sonic turned and sprinted off after the GUN trooper. Sonic caught up to him and slowed down. He ran behind Bolton. They made their way down onto the street and ran along it. As they were running, Bolton looked over at Sonic.

"Go ahead and see what is at that intersection!" he barked

Sonic nodded and sprinted off at full speed. He was at the intersection in minutes. He looked around, searching for what was still yelling. After a brief search, Sonic spotted what it was. And it was not what he wanted. What he saw, was a GUN trooper. But not only a GUN trooper, but Amy as well. She was there, attacking the trooper. She sprinted at the trooper, jumping from side to side, swinging wildly at him. The trooper looked to be doing his best to dodge and fire at her, but he wasn't doing well. She was getting closer to him, and he was panicking. Sonic was now able to make out what his screams were saying.

"GET AWAY FROM ME! HELP!" the trooper cried

Sonic just stood there. He saw Amy there, fighting. How he loved it when she moved her body with such grace and precision. It made him melt inside. She had always been great at acrobatics. But his fawning over her was stopped when Bolton caught up. Bolton patted Sonic's shoulder.

"Nice work. You go up there, I'll distract her." He said

Bolton raised his rifle and aimed near Amy. Sonic looked up with an angered face.

"You won't hurt her, will you?" he growled

Bolton smiled and clicked off the safety.

"Of course not. Now go."

Sonic huffed and sprinted towards the two. As he was running, Sonic thought of the hardest decision he could ever make. Should he hurt her? She was still Amy Rose to him. She always would be. But could he hurt her? Sonic wiped away a tear from his still red eyes.

"I have to… I'm sorry, Amy." He whispered

Sonic reached Amy and the trooper. When he was close, Sonic whistled. Amy and the trooper stopped fighting and turned to see what it was. When he was close, Sonic jumped forward and grabbed Amy's hammer. He pulled it right out of her grip, and threw it forward. The hammer flew away and crashed into a building. Sonic skidded to a halt and stood up. He wiped off the dust from his shoulder and turned around, looking at the two stunned fighters. He looked over at the trooper and smirked.

"Get over here!" yelled Bolton from a distance

The trooper turned around and ran for Bolton. Sonic chuckled and looked over at Amy, who was standing there with one hand on her hip. She stared at him with a seductive smile.

"Why hello there, Sonic." She hissed

Sonic took a step forward and closed his fists. They both stood there, staring at each other.

"Amy." Sonic said, nodding slightly

"You look like shit, have you been crying?" she asked in an insulting tone

Sonic snarled, but blushed. How did she know he had been crying? Were his eyes still red? Nevertheless, he stood up tall. He was going to face her.

"You said it yourself last year. Men can cry." He stated

Amy laughed and pulled out her hammer.

"That's adorable. Yeah, they can cry. But only if they're pussies." She scoffed

Sonic exhaled in anger. He still loved this girl, but she was getting really hard to forgive right now. Her new attitude was mature, but evil.

"What have you turned into Amy?" Sonic asked

Amy started slowly walking down the street slowly. Sonic did the same. They walked, never taking their eyes off each other. Amy pulled out her hammer, held it in both hands and kept it close to her. Sonic just kept his fists tight, ready for the punch he didn't want to swing.

"I've become one hell of a bitch. Haven't I?" Amy chuckled, "But isn't this what you wanted? Didn't you always say to Tails that if I was more mature, you'd have loved me?"

Sonic realized what she was saying and swallowed hard. How did she know that? But it was true. She was more mature. Sonic tried to speak, but the words got caught in his throat.

"Well… yes… but-"

"But what?!" Amy exclaimed

She held her arms out like she was giving herself to him.

"Isn't this what you wanted? Am I not mature now? Am I not your dream girl? Or will I never be good enough for you?"

Sonic was speechless. Her words were like daggers, and was making him rethink everything. Was she right? No. She was his dream girl, but not when she was killing hundreds. Sonic stopped walking and got into a fighting stance.

"You used to be. But now you're a monster, a killer, a ghost." Sonic said

Amy's seductive and confident expression turned to one of awe mixed with pure hatred. She snarled and got into a fighting stance.

"WHAT DID YOU SAY?!" she screamed, lunging at him

Sonic jumped out of her way. He readied himself for a fight and ran for Amy. She turned around and swung at him. Sonic jumped back just in time to dodge her hammer. He landed back and Amy attacked him again. She swung at him. Sonic jumped up and landed on top of her hammer. Amy looked up at him with a confused face.

"I don't want to fight." Sonic said, jumping off

He landed right behind her. He was so close, he could smell the strawberry perfume she always wore. He took a huge whiff of her fragrance right before she spun around. Sonic shrugged and squatted down, missing the hammer by inches. Amy looked down at him. He was looking up her skirt! She blushed and raised her hammer high. She screamed and brought the hammer down. Sonic rolled out of the way. But when the hammer hit the ground, the shockwave from the powerful weapon sent him flying. Sonic crashed into the wall of a building and rolled onto the ground. He groaned and tried to get up. He struggled and fell back down. He looked up at Amy, who was making her way over to him. She held her hammer in her hands, ready to kill. She reached him and stood over the hedgehog. Amy looked down at him and growled.

"Well I do want to fight. It's what you deserve for leaving me."

Amy tried to kick Sonic, but he rolled out of the way. Sonic struggled to rise to his feet, but eventually did. He sprinted off, running in circles around her. The running made the dust and dirt fly into the air, creating a tornado of dust and dirt. Amy looked around in confusion. Sonic had no idea what he was doing. All he knew was that he was trying to save the GUN trooper. He was buying time. Amy realized this however. She readied her hammer and swung. One of the blades of her hammer cut right across Sonic's bandaged arm. Blood sprayed out of the reopened wound.

"GGAAHH!" Sonic cried, stopping

The whirlwind ended and Sonic tripped and fell to the ground. He grabbed onto his bleeding arm, trying to stop the blood. Amy turned and walked over to him. Sonic stood there, holding onto his arm. Amy dragged her hammer across the ground. The bloodied blade created sparks on the ground. Sonic looked up at her with pleading eyes.

"Please, Amy. Don't do this." Sonic begged

Amy smirked evilly. Fire brewed in her emerald colored eyes. She was the perfect picture of beauty, and terror.

"That's right, beg. Beg for mercy. Expect me to show mercy after all you've done. How rude you were to me, how you ignored everything I did for you. I only loved you, and what did I get in return? Your annoyed face. Think again, Sonic the Hedgehog. Agent R doesn't forgive anybody for what they've done."

Amy brought her hammer up for another swing. She swung it, ready to impale Sonic. But he sprinted to the side to dodge. Amy twirled around and yelled.

"Stand still!" she cried

Sonic dodged another attack. But how could he fight? His arm was gushing blood. His arm was starting to feel numb. He couldn't fight, he couldn't bring himself to hurt her. All he could do was talk. And words are cheap. Sonic jumped out of her way and sprinted away from Amy. He stopped a few hundred feet from her. But when he turned around to see where she was, Sonic's eyes dropped in fear. She was sprinting for him, hammer ready.

"Can I ever get away from her?" he panted

No, he couldn't. She would follow him anywhere, just like in the old days. Sonic just stood there. He couldn't escape her. He would accept his demise. At least it would be at the hands of someone he loved. Sonic closed his eyes and let a peaceful expression appear. He was done. He couldn't fight her, and he wouldn't. Sonic awaited death. Amy continued to run at him. She ignored the strange peaceful face he had. She screamed as she got closer to him. Just as she was about to swing, something happened. A shot rang out and echoed through the city. Amy stopped mid-swing. She turned and looked at the direction from which the shot came from. Only a hundred feet away, were two GUN troopers. They had their rifles aimed at her.

"Shit." She said under her breath

Sonic opened his eyes and looked at the situation. He saw Bolton and the other trooper aiming at Amy. They were slowly making their way over to them. He looked over at Amy, who was staring back at the troopers. The world suddenly went into silence for a few moments. Nobody breathed. Both Sonic and Amy awaited to see what the GUN troopers would do next. They could end it right there. But as the seconds went by, that seemed like less of a possibility. Sonic didn't know what to do. Should he run, or take his chances? Sonic smirked a little. Take the second choice. He wasn't dead just yet.

"Hey, sweetheart." Sonic said

Amy looked over at Sonic right before he kicked her in the chest with all his might. Amy felt the force of his shoe almost crush her. She flew back a considerable distance. She landed on the ground and skidded until she hit the other sidewalk. Sonic and the other troopers watched her like hawks. She wasn't getting up, but they saw her breathing. Sonic frowned. He had done it. He had fought her. He had stood up to her, and let her know, Sonic the Hedgehog was back. Even if she was his dream girl, she was still the enemy. This single kick marked a transition for Sonic. He could fight her, and still love her. He could still do what was right, and keep her in his heart. Sonic's self-confidence skyrocketed. He was back with vengeance. Even if it pained him to do it, he knew he could now fight. Sonic took a step forward.

"I still love you Amy. But if you're going to harm innocent people, then I will fight you." He said quietly

Sonic looked over and saw Bolton and the trooper running over to him. They made it over to him and stopped. Before they could even speak, Bolton had pulled out a bandage and was wrapping it around Sonic's wound. Sonic smiled, but wheezed in pain.

"Nice work." Bolton said, focusing on wrapping the bandage

Sonic looked down at him and let his smile grow even larger.

"Thanks, but I didn't do anything." He said

Bolton finished wrapping the bandage and took a step back. A huge grin was on his face. He stood next to the other trooper and gripped the collar of his tactical vest. That was a common thing for troopers to do. It was like they were holding a blanket as kids.

"Yes you have. You gave us enough time to relay the message." Bolton said, patting the trooper on the back

Sonic was confused by this. He stared at them with curious eyes.

"What are you talking about?" he asked

The trooper took a step forward and reached into one of his pouches. He pulled out an envelope with the GUN seal on it. Sonic took it and examined the envelope. He looked back up at Bolton, who was patting the trooper's back.

"Private Burns here, is the messenger for the 231st cavalry division. He was sent to deliver an important message to the CO of our division." Bolton said cheerfully

Sonic gave the letter back and stared at them with a still confused face.

"Okay great, but why is this so important?" he asked

Burns pulled down his scarf, revealing a proud face.

"Because it is the plans to coordinate an attack against Eggman's HQ. Our OCs are forming up together to take down that guy once and for all."

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