Title: How Chance Met Pop Purkins
Warnings: Some violence.
Disclaimer: I do not own Swat Kats: The Radical Squadron. It rightfully belongs to Hanna-Barbera.
Summary: A back-story explaining how Chance might have met Pop Purkins. When Paul Purkins closes the stand one rainy, wet night, he stumbles across a battered, wet tabby kitten and saves him from freezing to death on the street. The two quickly discover the one thing they share in common. Chance needs a father, and Purkins needs a son.
Author’s Note: This is based off of my own headcanons, so, some of the things I mention here I’m not claiming to be legit. Such as Chance having brown eyes, or how Purkins’ name is spelled. (I assume that because they’re kats ‘Perkins’ would be ‘Purkins’.) Lastly, enjoy reading, don’t be afraid to comment. I don’t bite ?
It was a busy day. More kats came up and down Prowlford St. than usual on the weekends. Mobs of furry kittens of all sorts of sizes and fur colors piled up in front of the magazine shack, all of them paired up or grouped together, and all of them talking.
The mass of kittens sometimes spilled out into the street and had to be honked out of the way by an occasional passing car. The shack had re-stocked, thus, the reason at fault for the mob of kittens. Everyone was scrambling to get to the comic pages first.
There was one kitten, however, who wasn’t clawing his way to place his quarter on the wooden sill of the shack window. He was comfortably curled up behind the trash bins alongside the shack. There was dirt on his red shirt that was two sizes too short and holes in the jeans he wore. His blond tail was tucked in a content position beside him. There was a comic book in his hands.
He would have paid for it, if he’d had any money perhaps. He’d spent it all on a chocolate bar from the store down the block. The chocolate was consumed, with only remnant of it smeared on the kitten’s furry right cheek. He was nearly half-way through the action-packed episode of ‘Kat Komandoes’ when he was spotted by the owner of the shack, the kat the city natives called ‘Purkins’.
“Hey, you! Are you gonna pay for that?!”
The kitten realized he had been caught. He left the comic book behind him and pushed through the crowd and out of sight. He knew Purkins wouldn’t chase after him just to scold him. Purkins wasn’t like that.
Nevertheless, the kitten didn’t stop running until he was ‘safe’ on the front step of Mrs Katterson’s orphanage, the place he called home. Quietly, he turned the latch and slipped in through the doors.
Young Chance forced his feet to run faster, throwing a terrified glance over his shoulder to see if his pursuers were still chasing him. Sure enough, the gray kitten with the torn ear was still coming on strong.
Chance gave a frightened whimper and quickened his pace even more so. But, running so hard for so long soon became unbearable, and Chance could feel himself slowing more and more as the muscles in his legs burned.
He looked back again to find the gray kitten and his cronies gaining on him. The gears of Chance’s young mind were grinding now. He had to shake these guys somehow. He knew that if they caught him, the only result could be pain.
Chance saw his window of opportunity up ahead, There was an alley blocked off by a tall wooden fence. Beside it was a parked car. Chance quickly planned his course of action and jumped for the trunk of the car, his sneaker slipping as he struggled to push himself up.
He bounded onto the roof of the car and turned to spring for the fence. He faltered, realizing the fence had seemed closer to the car than this originally. Chance discovered all too late that it was too far to jump. He turned his head to come nose to knuckle with a gray fist. Next came the white blast of pain.
He fell backwards onto the windshield of the car, tumbling down onto the hood as his ears rang and his skull throbbed. As he looked up, the gray kitten sprang on him from the roof of the car, and his sneaker collided with Chance’s head.
The young tabby was once again flung backwards. The wind was thrust from his lungs as he landed on the curb. He rolled over onto his front, wiping his mouth and finding blood smeared on his hand.
He scrambled out of the way as the three kittens tried to surround him. He ran for his life, staggering half-blind in a zigzag pattern on his unsteady feet. A thunderclap overhead nearly caused him to leap out of his fur.
The toe of his shoe scuffed the pavement, and he fell forward onto the concrete. His hands were scathed and red and they burned horribly as he pushed himself up, now crying pitifully.
The kittens were upon him in seconds as the rain began to splatter all around. A shoe hit Chance’s side, and he screamed, trying to move away from them, only to be kicked in the back.
“Fight back, chubby-cheeks!” the gray kitten spat, snatching Chance by the ear and yanking it.
Chance grimaced, clenching his eyes tightly shut to keep the tears that stung them from slipping out.
“Please!” he cried painfully. “Let me go! Please!!”
The kitten snickered, “Make me, loser!”
The rain began to pour now.
One of the gray kitten’s pals looked to the other. “Gary! It’s raining really bad! Let him go! We’ll rough this loser up later!”
The other crony nodded, producing a scowl from Gary.
“No way! What are ya, chicken?! No, we finish this and then we’ll leave!” he retorted, turning back to Chance to see him struggle to his feet and high-tail it up the block.
“Get him! Rip his fur out!” Gary whooped gleefully.
They chased after him, howling and jeering.
Chance’s steps were sluggish as he ran. He was dizzy from pain and exhaustion and fright. This time he didn’t even look back. Get back to the orphanage. Get in your bed. It’s safe there. He told himself this over and over as he detoured through a narrow alley and left-turned down another block. Safety was just twelve buildings away.
His legs felt weaker and weaker, and, finally, they gave out. Chance dropped into a puddle and lay there sobbing. His body was soaked to the bone in freezing rain.
Meanwhile, Paul Purkins sighed in satisfaction at his decent accumulation of quarters he had earned from the day’s sales. He latched the window to the shack and slipped into his raincoat with a groan. How he hated the rain!
As he pushed open the door, he stepped out into a puddle and nearly trod upon a dark blond lump of soggy fur. He stepped back with a start.
“What in the…?” he mumbled, bending down to touch the lump of fur. Its bright red t-shirt clung to its motionless body. The body shivered at his touch. Paul drew back his hand, and a head lifted from the puddle. Two tear-filled brown eyes stared up at him.
“Well I’ll be…It’s a little guy!” Paul stated in surprise. He slipped both hands under the kitten’s arms and lifted him up out of the puddle, holding him at eye-level. “Hey, there,” he greeted.
The kitten sneezed. His whole body shivered.
Paul looked at the kitten inquisitively. The kitten was certainly a sight. His fur was plastered to his body until he was dripping. Blood gushed from his nose and the corner of his mouth. He was covered in bruises, and his red shirt had ridden up his body somewhat, far too small as it was.
Paul chuckled, “A bit of a brawler are we?”
The kitten sneezed again.
“You’re probably cold. Come inside,” Paul invited, carrying the kitten into his house near the shack. He unlocked the door and walked in, holding the kitten on his shoulder. The door closed and a light warmed the room with the flip of a switch.
Paul carried the kitten into what appeared to be a living room and set him down gently on the chair. The kitten immediately slumped against the armrest, unable to hold himself up. Paul obtained a blanket from the hall closet across the room. He wrapped it around the kitten’s shoulders warmly, then he left the room again.
The kitten didn’t notice; he was asleep like a stone. When he awoke again, Paul was there, reading on the sofa. The kitten pushed himself upright and groaned, rubbing his eye with a chubby fist.
At this, Paul lifted his face from his book. A smile raised his chestnut brown mustache. “Welcome back,” he greeted, handing the kitten a mug of milk.
The kitten didn’t hesitate to take it in both hands and gulp it down.
“I recognise you. You drop by the shack often. Never pay though…What’s your name, kid?” Paul asked.
The kitten put the empty mug down on the armrest and wiped his mouth with the back of his hand. “Chance,” he answered.
Paul chuckled, holding out a hand. “I’m Mr Purkins,” he introduced himself.
Chance looked down at the kat’s big hand, then awkwardly shook it with his tiny one.
“Where am I?” he asked, turning his head right and left to look about the room.
“This is my home,” Paul replied. “Do you live nearby?” he asked.
Chance nodded, then his brows scrunched. “You ain’t one of dos bad people, are you?” he inquired.
Paul just smiled and shook his head. “Son, I saved you from hypothermia. All I wanna do is help you. You got a mama?” Chance shook his head, and Paul frowned, “You don’t?”
Chance shook his head again.
“A dad?” Paul asked.
“Nuh-uh,” Chance answered. “Missus Katterson says mama didn’t want me.”
“Didn’t want you?! Son, Mrs. Katterson’s a witch! Don’t listen to her,” Paul hissed under his breath.
“Why ya keep callin me ‘son’? I ain’t nobody’s son…” Chance mumbled, pooching his lip. “An’ I ain’t got nobody.”
Paul paused for a moment, in a spell of reflection. His blue eyes clouded over for a few seconds before he said, “I lost… my wife and son, about a half-year ago.” He drawled, rubbing his forehead. “I guess… in a way…” He looked understandingly at the young tabby, “…I…’ain’t got nobody’ either.”
Chance raised his brown eyes to look at Paul. “Yeah…” he whispered, hanging his head, “dat’s tough, Mister Purkins, sir…”
The room grew silent for an instant before Paul began, “How would…” He hesitated. “How would you… like to have a father?”
Chance’s face lit up as he gasped and looked to Paul. “Really?! You!” he exclaimed, the overjoyed grin filling his face.
Paul nodded, smiling at the kitten’s sudden burst of enthusiasm.
“No kiddin?!” Chance gasped. “Aw, thank-you, Mister Purkins!” He threw his arms around Paul’s neck, happier than he’d ever been in his life.
“Please, call me Pop,” Paul replied, winking.
Chance nodded, the grin never leaving his face. “Sure, Pop.”
_______Now for some author notes…____________________________________ _ _ _
Let’s shake on it. Deal? Deal! Family!
Yeah… I’m pretty sure some paperwork needs to be filled out or something… Technically, to smooth over any confusion, Purkins was merely seen by Chance as a father figure, but he was never officially a legal guardian. What-ever!
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Disclaimer: SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron is copyright to Hanna-Barbera Cartoons Inc. All Rights Reserved. © 1995. All other characters and material within this page are the property of their respective creators.