Having topped the charts with their newest hit single, “Smoked,” with Captain Grimalken doing the lead vocals, the SWAT Kats Band was becoming a force to be reckoned with. Fans all over the country were traveling anywhere they could (but especially to Megakat City) to watch them perform. Because it was the SWAT Kats Band, T-Bone and Razor got plenty of opportunities to take the lead vocal, but for some strange reason, their biggest moneymakers in #1 hits seemed to occur when Grimalken had the lead, thus earning him the reputation of being the “world’s mightiest guitar hero,” as one critic put it.
So far, only once had Grimalken actually gone into battle armed with the guitar, and that was during a team-up with Sonic the Hedgehog fighting against Dr. Eggman’s attacks on Station Square. The Captain had used his guitar, amplified to the max, to produce deadly waves of sound that threw Eggman off course and led to his defeat. In gratitude, the public said “thank you” to him by purchasing the latest CDs (or downloading music for their iPods) that comprised their greatest hits.
Today, Grimalken had his guitar with him and was just jamming out as Chance and Jake continued to work on the Turbokat. As he was playing, Chance and Jake were joking around with each other.
“I can name that tune in three notes!” Chance said while Grimalken was improvising.
“Well, I can name it in two!” Jake shot back.
“All right; name that tune,” Chance replied.
Jake paused to ponder over the answer, then admitted, “You know, I really can’t, and I’m embarrassed to say it.”
“Don’t worry, buddy,” Chance smiled. “I think he’s just improvising.”
Jake turned to buff out another ding on the Turbokat. “This is the part I hate the most, buffing these dings out. But, at least it was during that last battle against the Pastmaster. Doesn’t he ever quit?”
“I don’t know, but what puzzled me is why he wasn’t after Callie. Usually, since that Queen Callista keeps telling him ‘no,’ he’ll come to our time and capture Callie.”
“I can’t believe she was willing to marry him at one point just to save us.”
“She can be a daredevil sometimes.” Chance finished up washing the cockpit of the jet, then turned to Grimalken. “Hey, Cap,” he said. “You in that sort of mood today?”
“Oh, you bet,” Grimalken smiled. “I’ve been dying to rock for the masses again, but then, sometimes studio recordings turn out to be more profitable.”
“Well, I think it has something to do with the fact there are things you can do in the studio you can’t do live,” said Jake. “Just the other day, I watched Fango add the motorcycle effects you insisted be included into our song, ‘Smoked.’ That can’t be duplicated in live performance.”
“Well, that’s true,” said Grimalken, striking an A chord. “It’s just my mission to see that rock and roll will never die.”
“And, I have a feeling Sonic JAM and the Martian Freedom Fighters are on that same mission,” Chance replied.
At that point, the alarm went off. “It’s Callie,” Jake exclaimed mildly. “Wonder what she wants?”
“Let’s find out,” said Chance, hitting the button. “T-Bone here. What’s the problem, Miss Briggs?”
“Hi, T-Bone,” came Callie’s voice from the other end. “I felt it was my duty to inform you and Razor that Manx’s sentence was altered. After determining that he had enough money to pay off the debt he was asked to pay in the first place as an alternative to going to jail, the authorities are letting him out so he can pay the debt. While he still has 200 hours of community service to do, he’ll have no trouble finding work for that.”
“Glad to see he’s finally come to his senses,” said Jake.
“Yes, and so am I, Razor. In the meantime, since he’s also rehabilitated for the better, Dark Kat has just told me that, although he’s not after me, the Pastmaster is working on another time warp scheme. It would turn our current state of 2010 into 1110, which would mean history repeating itself with a few modifications.”
“That would mean the end of rock-and-roll until it got to 1950 again!” Chance exclaimed. “Rock and roll will never die!”
“Not if I have anything to say about it!” Grimalken added. “Show me this Pastmaster creep and let me at him.”
“Going to try your guitar method again?” asked Jake as he and Chance donned their SWAT Kat uniforms, bared their feet, and jumped in their jet.
“You bet,” Grimalken replied. “See you out in the streets.” He grabbed his equipment, got in his car, and drove it in accordance with where the SWAT Kats were flying.
When our heroes reached the point of ground zero, the Pastmaster was activating his chain watch to mark the time warp trick of his and pull out of a Megasaurus Rex.
Watching from the Museum of History, Dr. Abby Sinian crossed her fingers. “I hate it when he does this,” she said to herself. “I hope the SWAT Kats are on top of everything.”
“So do I,” said Callie, having gone over to the museum to look at Dr. Sinian’s new exhibit on the Madkat saga (including the recent incident where Madkat’s spirit possessed Lenny Ringtail).
Proving indeed that rock and roll will never die, Grimalken struck up his guitar and turned the volume to full power. The sound waves managed to interfere with the time vortex, sucking back the Megasaurus Rex. The Pastmaster, unable to tolerate the noise, attempted to jump in the vortex to make his getaway. But, to no avail; the vortex closed too fast.
“Gotcha!” T-Bone shouted as Razor released an octopus missile that shot out a net, trapping the Pastmaster before he could escape. His watch chain managed to separate from him and head for the museum.
Seeing the watch chain drop, Commander Feral exited his sedan and ran to the spot so he could catch it. After succeeding, he walked over to the Museum of History and handed the chain to Dr. Sinian.
“Do you suppose you could use this?” he asked.
“I’ve been trying to put something on the Pastmaster for quite some time,” said Dr. Sinian, “so I can use this. It’s fantastic. I got the ancient war drum of Megalith City in, even though it looks like new.”
“That’s because Dark Kat had it fixed up so he could use it in that hare-brained scheme of his. I tell you, during the one time Fango got to bang on it, he said he was waiting for a bugler to start playing taps.”
“Don’t know. That’s just his personality, I guess.”
“That makes sense.” Feral turned in time to see the sirens indicate that the Sergeant had apprehended and arrested the Pastmaster, who didn’t dare utter a word.
Later, at the hangar, the members of the rock band gathered to congratulate Grimalken.
“Two for two, buddy!” Chance announced. “Keep it up and you’re going to top even Jimi Hendrix!”
“Except I don’t plan on destroying the guitars like he did,” Grimalken replied. “What a psycho he must have been!”
“True enough, but at least the Pastmaster’s in jail,” Feral spoke up. “Knowing him, he’ll possibly break out, but then again, the Metallikats were the best at doing that, and I killed them off.”
“What surprised me is how they knew the SWAT Kats’ identities and were willing to tell you,” Callie replied. “Why’d you say no again?”
“Because I didn’t want to owe them anything,” Feral explained. “But, that’s what I get for being such a stubborn cat. Now the only one the public hates more than me is Manx.”
“Serves him right for wanting only the status.”
“Oh, yes, indeed.”
“Shall we go to the pizza parlor to celebrate this victory, then?” asked Jake.
“I was about to suggest that!” Felina replied. “Pizza parlor it is.”
“I think they lowered their buffet to $3.99, including the drink, actually,” said Chance, “so we’re getting a good deal. Won’t be surprised if the place is packed with people.”
“Especially those who want the Captain’s autograph,” Jake chuckled as the group got in their cars and headed to the pizza parlor.
“Hey, if they want it, they’ll get it,” Grimalken promised. “I’m not the world’s mightiest guitar hero for nothing.”
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