This is a continuation from my second story in the heart saga, Which is so far, Heart of Ice and Goldenheart. I now present to you my third and final story.
‘Love has no thought of self! Love sacrifices all things to bless the thing it loves.‘ -Lord Lytton
Location: Heaven Date: Mid-September, 1995
Jake had only felt a sharp pain and then everything went black. His last memory was of Chance saying something like, ‘Oh god, no…’
‘Jake?!’ Jake opened his eyes. Then they grew as huge as saucers. There in front of him was Sami, Kate and his mother.
‘But, but, but…’
‘What is it dear?’, asked his mother.
‘But you all, you’re all dead!’ He looked at his mother.
‘You, you died of a heart attack.’ Then he pointed to Kate.
‘Turmoil shot you in the back.’ Finally, he looked at his wife.
‘And you died from a stab wound.’
‘So how did YOU die Jake?’, inquired his curious wife.
‘Me?’, and then stopped. He started to cry.
‘What’s wrong Jake?’, his sister asked sympathetically. Jake stopped crying long enough to mutter out:
‘WHAT!’, they all shouted at him.
‘You heard me. Suicide.’
‘But why, Jake. Why?’ He looked up at Sami.
‘Why? WHY? You died, you left me miserable, ‘you’ all of you, you made me do it. You are the reason I shot myself in the head. YOU! You hear me? YOU!’ With that, he plopped down on the ground and cried his eyes out.
In Megakat City:
Felina was still in shock at what she had just seen. It wasn’t like Jake to just end it all and shoot himself in the head. But then again, he had been through a lot of stress recently. Chance was kneeling beside his fallen partner rubbing his right paw with his fingers, his eyes still wet from tears. Felina knelt beside Chance, who shook his head in disbelief.
‘What will I do without him, Felina?’ She put her paw on Chance’s shoulder, in a desperate effort to console him. She felt sorry for both of them, Jake because he had lost so much in so little time, Chance because his partner was dead. He’d decided to take his own life for the sake of stopping all the worry and anger.
‘I don’t know. Get a new weapons manager?’ Chance shook his head.
‘No one could ever replace Jake.’
‘I know, it’s just that..’ She trailed off, leaving Chance to fill in the blanks. She exited the room, letting Chance be alone for awhile. As she leaned against the front door, she saw Marcus returning in the tow truck, carrying a six-pack of milk, two pizza boxes and a roll of fax paper.
‘Hi Felina.’ She nodded glumly.
‘Hey, why are you so down? Jake have an accident or something?’
‘More or less.’ Marcus was developing a nagging sensation in the back of his mind but he brushed it away.
‘What happened? Drop a typewriter on his foot?’ She shook her head.
‘Bookcase fell on him?
‘Better or worse?’
‘Much worse.’ Marcus didn’t like this.
‘What’s the matter? It couldn’t be THAT bad could it?’ Felina nodded.
‘Very bad.’ Marcus didn’t like this at all.
‘Well then, what happened?’ Felina tried to say it but the words would just not roll out of her mouth.
‘I’d better show you.’ Now she had Marcus feeling down. He set down the milk and the pizzas on the dining table and followed her to Jake’s room. She opened the door and Marcus stepped in.
‘Hey Jake I… oh God…’ The roll of fax paper fell from his paw, rolling out all over the floor.
Chance could not sleep. They had called an ambulance to take away the body but he felt that somehow, it was still not complete. He missed Jake, badly. Looking up at the stars, he wondered if anything, anything at all could bring him back. Slowly he nodded off, Felina at his side.
Chance stood in nowhere. It was as if he was somewhere, but in a space devoid of all matter. All he could see was light. Then he heard something behind him. Spinning around he saw a dragon. Not the type in cartoons where the dragons are green, with small wings and breathe fire, but a more realistic dragon. It towered above Chance by at least five feet, had two very large wings behind it’s back, but had no arms, only feet which looked like an alligator’s .
‘Who, who are you?’
‘I am Zai’tun Drakor, lord of the dragons.’ He leaned forward.
‘Do you remember a time when your friend’s wife was dying?’ The memory hit Chance like a ton of bricks.
‘What was the antidote?’ Chance stiffened.
‘It was fabled to be dragon’s blood.’
‘Well it was.’
‘Do you doubt me?’
‘It was dragon’s blood. Not only was it the antidote for that disease, the drinker has another chance at life.’
The being who drink’s dragon’s blood has the power to return to life once dead or transfer it to another being.’ Chance’s hopes rose.
‘But, there is a catch.’
Chance’s hopes fell.
Sami was also telling the same story, except that she was telling it to Jake. ‘And the catch is?’, inquired Jake. Her voice caught in her throat.
‘The power can only be used once.’ Jake’s jaw dropped.
‘Are you telling me once per kat, or just once in general?’
‘Once per drinking.’
‘How do you know?’
‘This dragon named Zai’tun Drakor told me.’
Jake looked at his mother. ‘Ma.’
She shook her head. ‘I’m old Jake. It’s not worth using the powers on me.
‘I’m not leaving Ma.’
She looked up at him. ‘I want you to live. Go back. Be a SwatKat. Save the city.’
‘You can do more than I can.’
She laughed. ‘Me? Oh come on Jake. What can I do? I’m just a Lieutenant in the Enforcers. You, you are a Swatkat.’ This last sentence raised the eyebrows of his mother.
‘I insist Jake.’
Seeing that he wasn’t going to get anywhere by arguing, Jake relented. ‘Alright.’
Sami nodded and stood up.
‘At let Khamen, tun ken yife,’ She chanted. ‘Bestow this kat with the gift of life!’
Jake suddenly felt dizzy as he watched his family disappear. He felt weird, as if he was floating.
‘Let me get this straight. If anyone drinks this stuff, they can come back to life.’
‘Or, they can transfer it to someone else.’
‘You catch on fast.’
Chance continued. ‘But the drinker has only one chance to use this power per drinking.
‘That is right.’ The dragon suddenly stopped. ‘I must leave. Farewell, Chance Furlong.’ He turned and walked away, leaving Chance to his own thoughts.
‘Jake?’ He whirled around, finding no one.
‘Jake buddy, where are you?’
There was no answer.
‘Chance? Chance, wake up!’
‘Felina?’ He got up. ‘Where’s Jake?’
‘He’s dead, remember?’
‘I heard his voice.’
‘That’s impossible. He’s gone.’
‘I know, but I heard it…’
‘You must have been dreaming.’
‘I wasn’t dreaming. His voice was, so distinct. So loud. So clear.’
Amy was working the late shift at the morgue. It seemed so many people died in Megakat City. Just a couple of hours ago, they brought in a young kat who’d shot himself. Turned out on the records that he had lost his wife recently. Poor guy.
A loud sound caught her attention. Grabbing a gun from her drawer, she went over to the ‘C’ section, where the noise was coming from. She stopped and suddenly felt faint. It was the kat they had brought in earlier. He was brushing himself off, looking very much alive. He looked up and she nearly fainted.
‘Sorry to scare you, lady, but I have to leave,’ he said with utmost politeness as he walked towards the door. Amy leaned on his open drawer, feeling weak.
‘I gotta lay off the beer.’
Felina had gotten up early, as she was on duty. As she strapped on her bulletproof vest, she heard a voice.
She looked at Chance. He was asleep.
She perked up her ears.
‘Felina, it’s me Jake’ She shook her head. Now she was dreaming, she thought as she walked out the door. She took one look at the kat standing in the kitchen and screamed.
Chance heard a scream and got up immediately. He rushed to where Felina was standing in the doorway. She was as white as a sheet.
‘What’s wrong Felina? You look like you’ve seen a ghost.’
‘Technically, she has.’
Chance looked up and felt the color draining from his face. ‘Jake?’
‘You know Chance, if I knew you were going to be this unappreciative, I wouldn’t have bothered to come back.’
Chance looked at him. He seemed solid enough. He reached out a paw and felt his partner’s head. He felt nothing but a scab.
‘What’s the matter buddy?’
‘It still hurts.’
‘How did you come back?’
‘It’s a long story.’
‘Does it have anything to do with a ten foot tall dragon?’ Jake arched an eyebrow.
‘How did you know?’
‘Came to me in a dream.’
Felina had no idea what they were talking about. ‘Hey guys, sorry to interrupt, but could you fill me in on this?’
‘Hmmph.’ Felina headed for her cruiser, which was parked outside the salvage yard. She waved goodbye and drove off.
Jake couldn’t sleep. He was worried about his mother, Kate, and most of all, Sami. He missed them terribly. He suddenly felt guilty for letting them stay up there and leaving them.
Suddenly he realized that he hadn’t eaten since before he met Sami in the hospital. He got up and headed for the kitchen. He opened the fridge and searched around until he heard a noise behind him, like breathing
‘Mr. Drakor, I presume?’
‘You presume right.’
Jake shut the fridge door and turned to face the dragon. ‘What do you want?’
‘I understand your situation and I pity you. Here, take this.’ He handed Jake a sword. ‘Kill me.’
Jake was stunned at what he had just heard. ‘But why?’
‘The only way to obtain dragon’s blood is to kill a dragon. Now kill me.’
‘Why would I want to kill you?’
‘It is obvious that you want your family back. Dragon’s blood is the key.’
‘As much as I want them, I can’t simply slice someone to bits.’
‘And why not?’
‘It would be murder.’
He leaned forward. ‘I am ten thousand years old. Even in dragon terms, that is VERY old. I will die soon. And no blood will be obtained that way.’ Four vials appeared in front of Drakor. ‘Take them.’
Jake reached out a paw and took them, holding the sword in the other paw.
‘This is what you must do. First, kill me and store my blood in the vials. Then kill yourself. When you arrive, drink the contents of one vial and return one family member. Repeat twice and then drink the blood in the last vial. This will return you to this realm.’ He paused. ‘There is, however, a serious flaw with this plan.’
Jake raised an eyebrow. ‘And that is?’
‘There is a very high probability at that point that you will turn into a dragon.’
Jake raised both eyebrows. ‘And what will I do if that happens?’
The dragon looked over his shoulder. ‘I will tell you when the time comes.’
‘When the time comes, you’ll be dead.’
Drakor seemed amused. ‘When a dragon dies, he only dies physically, not mentally. Kill me.’
‘What are you waiting for? KILL ME!’, he ordered.
Jake lifted the sword and hurled it at Drakor. The dragon roared with pain as the sword pierced his heart. Blood flowed from the wound. Jake knelt beside the dragon and filled the vials. He then removed the sword and placed it at his own chest.
Sami sat cross-legged on the ground. She thought about how Jake was doing alive when suddenly she saw a figure come up through the ground.
‘Oh great’, she thought. ‘Another dead kat.’ Her eyes widened as she recognized Jake. ‘Not again?’
Jake was awake this time. He saw Sami and asked, ‘Where’s Ma and Kate?’
She pointed to a tree in the distance. Before she could do anything, he was off like a bullet from a gun. As he approached, he could see that they were engaged in deep conversation, smiling and laughing.
Their smiles disappeared.
‘Jake..’ was all Kate had to say.
Sami appeared behind him. ‘We have no way of sending you back this time.’
‘Yes I do’, said Jake as he produced the vials from his shirt pocket. “This time for all of you.’
He drank the contents of the first vial, noting that it tasted extremely bitter. Immediately, his head began to spin.
He looked at his mother.
‘At let Khamen, tun ken yife, bestow this kat with the gift of life!’ His mother seemed to dissolve into the ground, leaving no trace.
He drank the second vial. The spinning in his head grew worse.
‘At let Khamen, tun ken yife, bestow this kat with the gift of life!’, he repeated for Kate.
Turning to his wife, his vision became awfully blurred. As he opened the third vial he almost dropped it. He drank it and faced Sami. This time, he had to say it at least four times before he got it right. His head was pounding, as if something was trying to get out of his brain. He fumbled with the fourth vial, pouring it down his throat. He felt weird again only this time, more than just weird. Strange was a more correct term.
Amy was still in disbelief at the past nights occurrences. No one had listened to her. She heard another noise from the ‘C’ and ‘H’ section.
“Not again. ‘ This time two kats emerged from the drawers, both female.
One looked at the other. ‘Where’s Jake?’
‘Probably back at the salvage yard.’
Not noticing her, they walked out the door.
Amy took out the hundred-dollar bill she had been saving up to buy that new brand of wine her friends had been telling her about. She tore it into shreds and threw it into the dustbin.
Jake awoke on the kitchen floor and felt an intense pain. He pulled out the sword from his chest and got up. He felt extremely lightheaded as he walked to the garage.
‘Must, find, Kate, and, Sami.’, the words came slowly.
As he turned the ignition key, he fought the urge to black out. He reversed the tow truck and headed for the morgue. He was feeling lightheaded and somehow floating. He grit his teeth until his jaw hurt. He suddenly noticed a small but disturbing fact, his paw was green and scaly.
‘No! I will not let you take me!’ He jammed the accelerator to the floor and swerved to the right. He recognized two figures standing on the sidewalk. He pressed hard on the brakes and everything went black.
Sami saw the tow truck headed for Kate, who was leaned up against a brick wall. She pushed her to the floor, the bumper making contact with where Kate’s abdomen would have been seconds ago, nice work since she was two months pregnant. She got up and was about to arrest the driver when see saw Jake in the driver’s seat, head slumped on the steering wheel, one paw green and scaly.
‘We’d better get him to a hospital.’
Jake groaned and looked up.
‘Sami I feel like,’ he paused shook his head and looked up again. ‘Gerent tho’ der felk.’
She was baffled.
‘Keh holt con senwer?’
‘I don’t understand a word you’re saying, Jake.’
‘Ja’c Kranen se mon kel weltfet.’
‘Kol ente’, Ja’c Kranen. Jaen ke holm?’
‘I had better get you to a hospital, fast.’
Jake couldn’t understand what Sami was trying to say. She started the tow truck and headed for the nearest hospital. She could see what seemed like wings emerge from his back, ripping his shirt.
Jake made her panic. Now and then his ECG would stop and then go back up to normal. She was praying for his life.
Suddenly he opened his eyes. They were dark green, not the pupils, the entire eye. He was in pain as if something was trying to get out of him.
‘Shiren, shireneth, kolest que ter gerente’ ledeht!’
Sami was very confused. She put a paw on his chest but drew back in pain and surprise. It was hot, not the ‘hot’ in fevers but BURNING hot. She tore open his shirt and saw a red glow emanate from his chest. Grabbing a glass of water from the table, she threw it on him. It turned to steam long before it even reached his chest. She ran for the fridge in his room and opened the icebox. Grabbing two trays, she emptied them onto his chest. The ice evaporated the moment she poured it on him.
His ECG was going berserk, heading right off the screen. The glow moved up into his throat, and into his mouth. Then a beam of light shot from his mouth, penetrating the ceiling. After a while, it stopped.
So did the ECG.
To be continued.
I lost many days worth of sleep, hunched over a keyboard, staring at a computer screen writing this one. Appreciate it and read it over and over again. This is the sequel to Heart of Ice, my previous story. It is also the second story in my ‘heart’ saga. Again, thanks to DJ Clawson for posting this thing on her page. If you don’t understand any part of this story, read Heart of Ice.
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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.