Original SWAT Kats Story

Return of the Giant Bacteria

By Bill Hiers

  • 2 Chapters
  • 14,094 Words

Dr. Viper and his mushroom monster break into Megakat Biochemical Labs, and the Enforcers arrive to try and take him down for good. But, what is it that Viper is trying to steal this time… (Note: The first chapter has been re-written, but the second has not. There is a disconnect between the two.)

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Author's Notes:

Title: Return of The Giant Bacteria, Part 1: The Robbery
Author: Bill Hiers
E-mail address: kooshmeister@aol.com
Date: April 4, 2003
Rating: T
Warnings: Some death in this one, but nothing too horrific I should think.
Disclaimer: SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron and all related characters and concepts are copyright Hanna-Barbera, and this author does not own a single one of them.
Summary: Megakat City relives one of its oldest and most gruesome nightmares when Dr. Viper attacks with yet another giant bacteria.
Author’s Comments/Notes:Been dying to redo this one for a while. It’s still basically the same and I hope you all enjoy it as much as the original draft. I should also note that part of this story is based on my belief that Dr. N. Zyme may have survived the events of the episode “The Giant Bacteria.”

Chapter 1

Night had fallen on Megakat City. The street lights gleamed brilliantly, and Stan lounged in an alleyway across from the silent Megakat Biochemical Labs. His buddies, Billy and Arturo, sat on the ground playing poker with a pack of well-worn cards. He played with his switchblade absently. A tough-looking hoodlum with a bright green mohawk, Stan took pride in the fact that, with all those supervillains running around, the SWAT Kats and the Enforcers hardly bothered with street-scum like them.
He was bored out of his mind. Suddenly, he heard the sound of approaching footsteps. Stan leaned around the corner of the alley.

The card players stopped and looked up. “What is it, Stan?” Billy whispered.

Stan put a finger to his lips. “Sshhh!”

Peering around the corner again, he spotted a weary-looking kat approaching with an overcoat slung over his arm. The guy looked drunk. Stan smiled and signaled to his friends to get ready. As the kat walked past the alley, Stan jumped out and cuffed him across the jaw. He cried out and fell down.

“Good one!” said Billy. He and Arturo came out of the alley to join Stan, Billy sporting a baseball bat and Arturo a crowbar.

“Wh-what do you want?!” their victim demanded fearfully.

“Whatever money you have on you will do just fine, pal,” Stan said.

Terrified, the kat took out his wallet and gave it to his muggers. Stan noticed the gold watch on his wrist.

“The watch, too,” he ordered.

The kat covered his watch protectively with his paw. “No,” he squealed. “It was a gift from my wife!”

Stan growled. “Billy, persuade our friend here to give up his watch.”

“With pleasure,” Billy said.

Beating his baseball bat into his open palm, he approached their terror-stricken victim with an enormous grin on his face. Stan watched as Billy raised the bat to strike. But before he had the chance, a low groaning sound came from nearby. Billy stopped, looking around. Stan, Arturo, and the other kat did so as well.

“What the heck was that?” said Billy.

The sound came again, louder this time, and Stan’s head snapped in the direction of Megakat Biochemical. Was it coming from that kathole in front of the building? He looked at Arturo.

“It’s coming from over there,” he said. “Go check it out.”

Arturo gulped, but did as his leader instructed, clutching the crowbar tightly as he approached the kathole. Billy held their victim by the collar of his suit to keep him from escaping, as he and Stan looked on. Arturo stepped up to the covered opening in the street, staring down.

“I don’t hear anything,” he said. “Maybe it’s gone.”

The noise came a third time, louder than ever. It was practically a roar. Arturo took a step back in surprise. Suddenly, the lid of the kathole popped off as a thick green tentacle covered in orange spots shot out. It wrapped around Arturo’s waist and yanked him down into the sewer before he had a chance to yell.

“Arturo!” Stan cried.

A big, shapeless green glob rose up out of the small hole, and quickly formed itself into what could only be described as something part kat, part mushroom, with multiple tentacles, pointed ears on top, and glowing red eyes. It snarled at the three kats, who all jumped back in surprise.

“Stan! What is that thing?!” Billy cried.

“I don’t know, but it wasted Arturo,” Stan answered. “Get it!”

Billy released their victim and ran at the monster, swinging the baseball bat and smacking the thing upside its massive head. That only made it mad. It swung a tentacle, knocking the bat from Billy’s hands. He screamed as he was seized in the hideous appendages, the monster’s mouth opening wide. Stan took several steps back as Billy was stuffed into the creature’s tooth-filed maw and devoured.

“Holy kats!” he choked out.

Beside him, their victim was sobbing in terror. He quickly got to his feet and ran away down the street. Dropping his switchblade, Stan watched him flee and decided to follow his example and ran back into the alley, leaping over a dumpster and a fence and out of the monster’s sight.

 

Dr. Viper sighed as he emerged from the kathole. How many times did he have to tell his simple-minded creation that going on binges like this would just attract unwanted attention? He waited patiently for Fungus-Face, as he had come to call it, finish eating its meal. With a loud belch, the creature turned to face its master.

“Finished with your sssnack?” he asked. Fungus-Face nodded. “Good. Now, enough playing around. We’ve got worked to do.”

Turning towards Megakat Biochemical, Viper approached the front entrance. He paused, peering in through the door. There was no guard at the desk, and no hint of any activity inside. He then looked back over his shoulder for signs that anyone had heard all of the commotion moments before. There was nothing, and he smiled. Using his elbow, he smashed the glass in, reaching inside and unlocking the door.

“Come,” he whispered. “We mussst hurry.”

Opening the door, he slithered into the lobby, the bulky Fungus-Face oozing its way after him. As they made their way towards the stairwell, Viper began to wonder just where the guard was.

He got his answer as a uniformed kat suddenly walked around the corner from an adjoining hallway. The guard cried out in surprise, going for the blaster holstered at his hip. Viper put a stop to that with a powerful swing of his tail. Hit in the chest, the guard yelled and went flying into the wall. He slid down into an unconscious heap. The evil biochemist chuckled.

“Sssuch foolsss,” he lamented as he continued on his way. “You’d think they’d beef up the sssecurity around thisss place after my many visssitsss.”

Using the stairwell, he and Fungus-Face made their way up to the main lab on the 15th floor. Viper threw open the double doors and entered the room, rubbing his paws together and giggling with fiendish glee as he made a beeline for the shelves lined with Erlenmeyer flasks and various canisters. He found what he was looking for right away, grabbing several flasks labeled ‘Katalyst 100.’

“At lassst,” he hissed. “Katalyssst 100 isss mine, and thisss time there’sss no Dark Kat to ssstand in my way.”

He kept grabbing flasks until his arms were full and he could carry no more, cackling as his mind was filled with endless ideas of how to put Katalyst 100 to use. As he turned to leave, he spotted something that caught his attention. On a separate shelf for biological samples, such as preserved animals and cell cultures, a tall cylindrical container sat alone, filled with a slightly lumpy purple substances.

“Huh?” Viper blinked. He turned to Fungus-Face. “Here, take thessse, and don’t eat them!”

Fungus-Face took the flasks in its tentacles, and with his hands free Viper walked up to the biological collection, reaching up and plucking the cylindrical container down from its shelf. It was quite dusty. Turning it around, he found a wrinkled label that read ‘Giant Bacteria Specimen.’

“My giant bacteria?” he wondered aloud.

He decided that, as odd as this was, he could ponder on it later. Right now, he knew that his entrance had no doubt triggered the building’s silent alarm, and he had to take his things and depart quickly before the Enforcers arrived. Or worse, those annoying SWAT Kats!

“Well, you’re coming with me,” he said to the container. “I usssed up my bacteria ssstrain lassst time, and it wouldn’t hurt to have sssome more.”

Clutching the container to himself, he turned to Fungus-Face, who still held all the flasks of Katalyst 100. Before he could move or speak, there came the sound of approaching sirens. Viper ran to the huge windows of the lab and looked out onto the street, and growled when he saw several Enforcer cruisers approaching.

“Thossse meddling Enforcersss!” he hissed angrily. “Don’t they have anything better to do?”

He huffed as the cars skidded to a halt outside the building below. He had to think of a course of action, and fast!

 

Commander Ulysses Feral got out of his personal cruiser, baton in hand. He scanned the street as his troops piled out of the other four cars, including Felina. Air support was on its way. Turning to look up at the dark Megakat Biochemical Labs, he scowled. It was quiet, be he knew that someone had broken in, and he was knew that someone had to be none other than Dr. Viper.

Feral was grouchier than usual, having been woken up in the middle of the night to come down here and handle this thing personally by the Mayor. Why, he didn’t know. He’d given up trying to make sense of Manx’s decisions a long time ago. His niece walked up to him as the rest of the commandos took up positions near the building’s entrance.

“Uncle, all the men are in place,” Lieutenant Felina Feral said. “They’re ready to go in on your order.”

Feral nodded. “Right. Get ready, men,” he said. “Nobody moves ’till I give the word!”

He never took his eyes off the building. Dr. Viper was in there, all right, and Feral was determined to get him. The thought of finally slapping the cuffs on that slippery snake and putting him away for good made him smile. He raised his arm, and was about to give the signal to advance when he heard the roar of approaching jet engines. His eyes widened. His air support was supposed to be composed of choppers, not jets! Which could mean only one thing.

“The SWAT Kats!” Felina declared, pointing upwards.

“I can see that!” Feral snapped.

The dark shape of the Turbokat, trailing blue flame behind it, roared onto the scene, and just the sight of the jet made Feral grit his teeth in anger. The Commander gave the signal for the commandos to move in regardless. If those arrogant vigilantes thought they were going to get all the glory for this, they had another thing coming.

“All right, men, move in!” he yelled.

The commandos quickly moved in, Feral tossing his baton into his cruiser through the still-open door, and drawing his blaster. He hurried after his men. Felina drew her own weapon and trotted briskly after her hotheaded uncle.

At the controls of the Turbokat, T-Bone looked down from the cockpit as he circled over Megakat Biochemical, noting the Enforcer cruisers parked at the entrance. He couldn’t see anyone, so he figured that they had all gone inside. In particular he could make out the distinct color scheme of the Commander-issue cruiser, which meant that Feral had showed up.

“Looks like the Enforcers are already here,” observed Razor behind him.

“Yeah,” said T-Bone with a chuckle. “Gotta hand it to Feral. He’s been beating us to the scene more often these days.”

“He’s either really dedicated to getting the bad guy, or he’s desperate to outdo us,” the gunner replied.

“Maybe a bit of both, knowing Feral,” said T-Bone. He chewed his lower lip “I’m setting ‘er down on the roof. This crook won’t go out the front because of the Enforcers, so we’ll be able to get him by working our way down.”

T-Bone was eager to get this over with as quickly as possible, or else he wouldn’t be able to get back home in time to catch the rest of the late-night Scaredy-Kat marathon. Activating the landing gear he lowered the Turbokat down onto the helipad that was on Megakat Biochemical’s roof. Meant for a helicopter, yes, but it worked for jets too. shutting down the engines, and then popping the canopy, both SWAT Kats unstrapped themselves from their seats and jumped out onto the roof. After a quick check of their Glovatrixes, they dashed to the roof entrance and descended the staircase.

“Gee,” whispered T-Bone, his voice dripping sarcasm. “I wonder which villain is behind this.”

“Well, we don’t know for sure it’s Dr. Viper,” said Razor. “Don’t forget the one time Dark Kat’s creeplings broke in here once, too!”

“Oh, right,” his partner said.

They reached the 15th floor, which T-Bone remembered housed Megakat Biochemical’s main lab, and where Viper usually concentrated all his efforts. The doors to the lab were open, and readying their Glovatrixes, the SWAT Kats leapt into the room, bringing their weapons up.

“Freeze, Viper!” yelled Razor. “Or Dark Kat!”

They blinked. The room was empty!

“Aw, crud!” said T-Bone. “Where’d he go?!”

Razor walked further into the room. “He’s gotta be in here someplace!”

 

Feral and the Enforcers stood in the empty lobby of the building. Empty except for the slumped form of a security guard laying against the far wall. A couple of commandos, on Felina’s orders, ran over to check his vital signs.

“He’s alive,” one of them said.

“All right,” replied Feral. “Get him to Megakat Memorial Hospital.”

The commandos gently lifted up the unconscious guard and carried him from the lobby. With that taken care of, Feral motioned for Felina and the remaining six commandos to follow him and went towards the door to the stairwell. No way was Viper going to use the elevator.

“Be ready for anything,” he instructed.

“Let’s get this rancid snake,” added Felina.

The commandos nodded and cocked their guns. Feral reached for the doorknob, and the entire door suddenly exploded outward. It flew off its hinges, smacking Feral in the chest and sending him crashing into the wall.

“Uncle!” Felina cried.

She and the other Enforcers then jumped back in surprise as a giant mushroom-kat thing with glowing red eyes emerged from the stairwell, clutching several containers of Katalyst 100 in its tentacles.

“Fire!” Felina ordered.

The commandos opened fire, their laser blasts bouncing off the monster’s body without seeming to have any effect. The only damage they did was to a few of the flasks it was holding. With a roar, it charged forward, slamming into three of the commandos and knocking them down as it moved towards the exit. The Lieutenant and the remaining three Enforcers continued to blast away at the retreating creature.

Feral meanwhile groaned and pushed the door off of himself, sitting up. Although he was aware of the battle that was occurring to his right, bit attention was focused on the open stairwell as a green figure in a white coat came hurrying out, clutching a cylindrical container of some kind. Dr. Viper.

“Out of my way!” Viper hissed as he elbowed one of the commandos in the side, sending him crashing into one of his companions. He ran swiftly after the bulky mushroom monster.

“Stop them!” Feral shouted as he groggily climbed to his feet. Felina and the last remaining commando ran after the retreating mutants. Shaking away his dizziness, and picking up his dropped blaster, the Commander hastily followed.

 

Upstairs, T-Bone and Razor pricked up their ears as they heard the sounds of a nearby firefight. They exchanged looks and ran to the huge windows of the lab. Looking down, they were able to see the unmistakable figure of Dr. Viper, along with one of his mutant flunkies, coming out of the building’s front entrance.

“Crud!” exclaimed T-Bone. “Come on, hurry!”

He turned and ran from the room.

“Where are you going?” Razor called after him.

“To the roof!” the pilot yelled back over his shoulder.

Gritting his teeth in determination, Razor followed after his partner.

 

Dr. Viper made sure the front doors slammed in the faces of his pursuers, giving him the precious few seconds he needed to reach the still-open kathole. But his confidence was dashed as he saw that one of the Enforcer cruisers was parked over the kathole, cutting off his escape!

He turned to Fungus-Face. “Move that car!”

The monster whimpered, its simple mind working to figure out how it could do that with its tentacles loaded with all those flasks of Katalyst 100. Deciding that a few could be sacrificed, it dropped six and they shattered on the pavement. Viper understood, and didn’t get angry. Using his free tentacles, Fungus-Face lifted up on the Enforcer cruiser, flipping it over onto its side and off the kathole.

“Now, let’sss go!” Viper said.

But before either of them could move, the Enforcers burst from the entrance of Megakat Biochemical, guns blazing. A well-placed shot from Commander Feral nicked the container in Viper’s hands, sending it flying. Viper gasped as it hit the ground, but didn’t break, and began to roll away.

“No!” he wailed.

“Heads up, snake-puss!” a voice came from above.

Viper snapped his head up to see the SWAT Kats on the roof of Megakat Biochemical. It was T-Bone who had spoken. He snarled angrily.

“Not thinking of just leaving us, are you?” Razor called down.

The Enforcers stopped and glanced up, too.

Feral scowled. “Not you clowns!” he growled.

“Yeah, us clowns,” said T-Bone, readying his Glovatrix. “We’re more fun than a barrel full of monkeys! Grappling hooks deployed!”

The two SWAT Kats fired grappling hooks that attached themselves to the building that was across the street from Megakat Biochemical, and swung down. Razor landed deftly near the Enforcers, while T-Bone maneuvered himself towards Viper. The mutated scientist cried out as T-Bone’s feet hit him in the chest and sent him flying back.

“Ack!”

As soon as his feet touched the ground, T-Bone ran towards Viper, who was on his back, balling up his fist. But Viper was on his feet in a flash, and swung his thick, powerful tail. T-Bone got a taste of his own medicine as he was sent sailing backwards, over Razor’s head and into the midst of the Enforcers. Commander Feral yelped as T-Bone crashed into him, sending all four kats to the ground.

Razor and Viper ran at each other, and the mutant threw a punch, which Razor caught in his open palm. But Viper’s talons wrapped around Razor’s slim neck, tightening up and choking him. The two kats struggled for dominance of the other, until Razor finally socked Viper in the gut. The scientist released the SWAT Kat’s throat and staggered back, coughing and holding his stomach.

T-Bone and Feral meanwhile both had recovered from their rough landing.

“Thanks for catching my fall, Feral,” T-Bone said.

“Get off me!” growled the Commander, shoving the SWAT Kat off himself.

“Sorry.”

Razor tackled Viper, but the scientist shoved him back. T-Bone and the Enforcers got their feet, and quickly ran to stand beside Razor. Outnumbered five to two, Viper decided it was time to leave. Fungus-Face thought so, too, as it was already squeezing itself back down the kathole. Before the SWAT Kats or the Enforcers could move to stop him, Viper ran and hopped down after his creation, and was gone.

Everyone ran to the kathole, but all they could see below was blackness.

“Crud,” said T-Bone. “He got away.”

“Thanks to you!” Feral roared. T-Bone spun to face him.

“What do you mean thanks to us?!”

“We had everything under control, until you SWAT Kats showed up and ruined everything, like always!”

“Why, you-!”

T-Bone gave Feral a hard shove, knocking him back a bit. Feral growled and shoved back. Felina quickly moved to situate herself between her uncle and the SWAT Kat, a paw to each of their chests, holding back the two snarling tom-kats.

“Guys, guys, guys,” she said. “Cool it! Hasn’t there been enough fighting already for one night?!”

“It’s not my fault your uncle’s such a stuck-up, pompous windbag!” T-Bone growled.

“Hey, you’re one to talk, you reckless, irresponsible hotshot!” Feral shot back.

Razor came forward. “Stop it! You guys are acting like a bunch of kittens with all this yelling and name-calling!”

T-Bone and Feral gradually unballed their fists and stopped gritting their teeth, stepping back a few paces and taking deep breaths.

“Let’s go home, Razor,” said T-Bone. “We did our part for tonight.”

Shaking his head, Razor gave an apologetic shrug to Felina and then followed T-Bone back into Megakat Biochemical, so they could get back upstairs to the Turbokat. Feral exhaled slowly.

“I’m sorry, Felina,” he said. “I behaved childishly.”

“It’s all right, uncle,” Felina replied. “Now then, back to the situation at hand.”

“Right, Lieutenant,” the Commander said, straightening his posture and regaining his composure, turning to the other Enforcer. ‘”I want you to see to the men, make sure they’re okay.” The commando saluted and ran off. “Felina, I put you in charge of things here. Find out what it is Viper stole, how much of it, and what he might have wanted it for.”

“Yes, sir,” she replied. “Where are you going?”

Feral walked toward his car. “Home,” he said. “I need aspirin and sleep.”

Felina watched her uncle as he got into his cruiser and drove off. A few moments later she heard the roar of jet engines, and turned to see the Turbokat lift off from the roof of Megakat Biochemical, zooming away.

“Speaking of aircraft,” she muttered to herself, as she went to one of the other cruisers to radio headquarters and call off the air support.

The following morning, a plain brown sedan pulled into the parking lot of Megakat Biochemical Labs and into one of the parking spaces reserved for the building’s researchers.

Dr. N. Zyme got out, briefcase in one paw and shutting his door with the other, and he hurried to the main entrance, having seen the broken glass in the front doors and the Enforcer cruiser parked outside. A pair of Enforcer commandos were by the desk as Zyme entered. All around there was evidence of a fight, burn marks from blasters, overturned chairs, not to mention the stairwell door off its hinges. He approached the commandos.

“What happened?” he asked.

“There was a break-in last night, sir,” said the taller of the two.

“I see,” Zyme sighed.

“Commander Feral should arrive shortly,” added the other commando.

Zyme nodded, and then they heard the sound of an approaching car. Turning to look out through the shattered glass of the doors, Zyme saw the blue and white Enforcer Commander-issue cruiser pull up behind the plain gray one. Commander Feral and Lieutenant Felina Feral got out of the car and came into the lobby. The two commandos saluted.

“Good morning,” Feral said as he returned the salute.

“Commander,” Zyme replied.

“I’m sure you already know there was a break-in,” said the Commander.

Zyme nodded. “Who was behind it?”

“Dr. Viper,” said Felina. “He and one of his mutant flunkies.”

“Viper,” the biochemist said, shaking his head. “Why did I even ask? He’s always behind these break-ins.”

“Anyway,” continued Feral. “None of my men have touched the scene since. I’d hoped we could go through and see what’s missing, Dr. Zyme.”

“All right,” Zyme replied after a moment.

“Well, then,” Feral gestured to the elevator with his baton. “Shall we?”

“Oh, yes, of course.”

Zyme led the way as he, Commander Feral, and Felina went to the elevator. Feral took a moment to instruct the two commandos to remain in the lobby, just in case Viper decided to show himself again.

Once they reached the 15th floor and departed from the elevator, Zyme was shown into the main lab, which showed few signs of being ransacked, but Zyme noticed instantly that a few containers of Katalyst 100 were missing from the shelves. Feral and his niece stood back as the biochemist went around the room, checking to see if anything else was missing.

“Well, Zyme,” Feral said at length, “anything missing?”

“Yes,” the biochemist said. “A few of these containers of Katalyst 100.”

He took one from the shelf and showed it to Feral, who snorted in annoyance. “Viper’s always after these things,” he said.

“Yes, I sometimes wonder if he ever actually does anything with them,” Zyme said, giving a small laugh as he returned the flask to the shelf.

Felina spoke up then. “Anything else?”

Zyme scratched his chin, getting a sudden eerie feeling. Looking past the Enforcers, he spied the back shelf where the biological specimens of various kinds were kept, and he suddenly gasped.

“Oh, no,” he whispered, seemingly forgetting that Feral and Felina were even there.

“What’s wrong?” Feral asked.

When Zyme didn’t reply, Felina said, “Dr. Zyme, are you all right?”

“I don’t know,” he finally said.

Felina exchanged looks with her uncle. Zyme looked like he was going to be sick or something. Finally, the Commander stepped forward and put his hand on Zyme’s shoulder.

“Dr. Zyme,” he said. “What’s wrong?”

“He’s taken it,” the biochemist replied distantly.

“Taken what? Something other than the Katalyst 100?”

Zyme swallowed a considerable lump in his throat, twice, before he finally replied.

“Please excuse me, I feel faint, I think I…need to get something fizzy from the soda machine,” he said. “I’ll explain when I get back..”

With that, Zyme moved past Feral and out the doors, into the hall, leaving the Commander and his niece looking stunned.

“What was that all about?” Felina inquired.

“I don’t know,” her uncle replied. “But I’m starting to get a bad feeling..”

Stan peered around the corner of the alley across the street from Megakat Biochemical Labs, cautiously, and he scowled when he saw the two Enforcer cruisers parked outside of the building. Where were they when Billy and Arturo had been killed? When their attempted mugging had turned sour, Stan had fled, but he’d remained crouched on the other side of the fence. The wallet of the kat they’d mugged was probably still on the ground.

Noticing no Enforcers were in sight, Stan slowly crept from the alley and into the street. He saw laying there not only the wallet but his dropped switchblade as well. Picking up both items, he chuckled as he put them into his pocket. Turning to go back into the alley, he stopped as he noticed what seemed to be a football-sized cylinder of some kind, laying in the gutter.

“Huh? What’s that?” he said aloud to no one.

Walking over, he reached down and picked the thing up, then went back into the alley to inspect his find. It was cracked open, but the purple-colored contents had not leaked out or anything. It had a label, but it was wrinkled and obscured by age and by the cracked glass. He could only make out the word ‘Giant’ and the letters ‘B’ and ‘A.’

Unscrewing the lid, he upended the container and dumped the contents out into his open palm curiously, and cringed as it felt like Jell-O mixed with sand.

“Yuck,” he said. In disgust, he flung the stuff away. Rather, he tried to. He realized the gunk was seemingly stuck to his hand! “What gives?”

Suddenly, it began to bubble and fizz. It seemed to liquefy itself and expand, covering his hand and his forearm in mere seconds! Worse, it burned like acid. Stan yelped, and flung his arm about, trying to shake it off, but it was no use. In less than a minute, his entire arm and half his torso was covered in this gunk, and somehow Stan felt that it wasn’t just covering him…he was turning into this crud!

“Aahhh! No! No! Noooooo!”

By then, the stuff had engulfed him up to the neck.

 

Commander Feral and Felina jerked their heads up as they heard the bloodcurdling scream from outside. They raced over to the huge windows of the lab, and looked down at the street. From out of an alley across the street staggered a kat with a loud green mohawk hairstyle….who was covered almost entirely in some kind of purple slime! The two Enforcer commandos Feral had left in the lobby responded immediately, hurrying out the front entrance and towards the obviously troubled kat.

As everyone looked on, the kat began a very horrible transformation. The gunk bubbled up, engulfing his entire head, leaving just the mohawk visible. He quickly doubled, then tripled in size, growing to nearly twenty feet tall. Two glaring, yellow eyes appeared and then a gaping maw curved into a sinister grin. The former kat bellowed as it reached out for the two stunned commandos with its gooey hands.

Felina looked at her uncle. “Uncle, is that-” she began.

“Yes, Felina,” Feral replied, turning to face her. “It’s a giant bacteria.”

Their attention was drawn back to the scene as they heard a loud scream, and one of the commandos was seized in the monster’s hand, and then the bacteria stuffed its screaming victim into its mouth and swallowed, and then reached for the second commando. Feral turned away, unable to watch anymore, taking out his walkie-talkie.

“This is Commander Feral,” he said into it. “I’m at Megakat Biochemical, and I’m in serious need of backup!”

It was at this point that Dr. Zyme returned, a can of soda in his hand. “What’s going on?” he asked, approaching the windows. He stopped, and the can fell from his hand onto the floor, spilling soda everywhere. With a sudden cry, he leapt back, screaming “Get away from the windows!!”

Feral turned to look, noting that the bacteria monster had already finished off the second commando, both kats’ discarded blaster rifles laying in the street. Taking Zyme’s advice, he and Felina stepped back from the window. Zyme was so hysterical that Felina actually had to restrain him. Luckily, the bacteria did not take notice of those inside the building, instead turning to lumber down the street, away from the labs.

“It’s leaving,” Feral said. He spoke into the walkie-talkie again. “Subject is heading west, down Katalina Avenue! Take extreme caution, normal weapons won’t work against this thing!”

Growling, he walked over and grabbed Zyme by the front of his lab coat, lifting him up to eye level. He knew that the biochemist had come within inches of losing his life the last time they had to deal with the giant bacteria, and so he understood Zyme’s hysterical reaction, but he couldn’t be gentle right now. Not with another one of those things on the loose!

“How is this possible?! I thought you said all those things were destroyed!”

“They were! This is a new one!” Zyme whimpered.

Feral shook the biochemist roughly. “Where did it come from?! I want answers and I want them now!”

 

Chance Furlong yawned. He was in the kitchen, in just a pair of sweatpants, waiting for a pot of coffee to finish brewing. Jake was already up and about, but Chance, well, he wasn’t a morning person. Finally, the light on the coffee machine turned from red to green, indicating the brew’s completion. Taking out the pitcher, he poured the pitch-black contents into his Scaredy-Kat mug. After adding creamer and a considerable amount of sugar, he moped into their ‘living room’ and plopped down beside Jake on the car seat.

On the TV, Saturday morning cartoons were being aired, the tail end of the all-night Scaredy-Kat marathon. Chance’s mood was instantly brightened as he saw Scaredy-Kat, in pith helmet and exploring the catacombs of a pyramid, receive a scare from a mummy, whereupon a beautiful she-kat dressed in Egyptian garb handed him a bomb, which he accepted, and then screamed as it exploded. Chance howled with laughter, spilling a bit of his coffee.

“Whoa!” he cried. “Hot, hot, hot!”

Jake shook his head, sipping his orange juice. “Don’t you ever get sick of this show?”

“What do you mean?” Chance questioned, eyeing his friend.

“It’s always the exact same stuff over and over. Scaredy-Kat gets scared, and then he’s blown up by some hot she-kat with a bomb.”

“So? It’s funny!” Chance grinned, taking a sip of his coffee.

“Yeah, for kittens,” Jake chuckled.

“Hey, I watch that stupid David Litterbin guy with you, so hush.”

Jake just sighed, draining his glass of juice. Just as Scaredy-Kat was about to get whacked with a giant mallet, which Jake knew to one of Chance’s favorite running gags on the cartoon, the episode was interrupted by a blue screen with ‘Kat’s Eye News Flash!’ across it.

“Hey!” Chance yelled.

Ann Gora appeared onscreen, seated behind her newscaster’s desk. “This is Ann Gora, Kat’s Eye News. We regret to interrupt your regularly scheduled program, to bring you this important news!”

Chance rolled his eyes. “It had better be important if it means I gotta miss Scaredy-Kat gettin’ whacked with a mallet!”

“Sshhh!” hissed Jake.

“It seems as though another gigantic bacteria has made its appearance in Megakat City,” Ann continued.

“What?!” Chance and Jake gasped in unison.

“The bloblike creature is currently making its way west along Katalina Avenue, and an Enforcer patrol is on the way to meet the threat, although this reporter would feel quite a bit better if the SWAT Kats were there to help.”

The screen changed to show some wobbly footage of the creature in question, obviously taken by an inexperienced onlooker, and yes, it was a giant bacteria. The only difference being that it had a bright green mohawk, of all things.

“Not one of these things again!” Jake moaned.

“Relax, buddy,” Chance said. “We’ll just use a couple of Megavolt Missiles to take care of this thing! Heck, even the Enforcers could waste that pile of crud since everyone knows their weakness is electricity!” He got up from his seat, rather carelessly setting the Scaredy-Kat mug on the nearby table, spilling some of the coffee. “Come on!”

“Where are you going?”

“We don’t want to disappoint Ann Gora, do we?” he replied with a smirk.

To be continued!

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