Original SWAT Kats Story

Pumadyne

By James L. King

  • 1 Chapter
  • 7,672 Words

Callie’s father, a Pumadyne engineer, tells Jake that Pumadyne is after the SWAT Kats, not knowing the identities of the SWAT Kats, or that he’s warned them. Rated M for content.

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Author's Notes:

Pumadyne

By James L. King

Freakaz@Aol.com

Author’s Notes: This story rated R. I’m considering Lance Falk’s ‘Cold War’ and ‘Blackout’ stories as part of the actual series as he was one of the series writers.

Legal Dept: SWAT Kats, MegaKat City, etc. are copyrighted/owned by Hanna-Barbera, Inc. The Simulator setup and the Lava missile come from ‘Cold War’ by Lance Falk.

Table of contents:

Prologue Chapter 1: Preparations

Chapter 2: Hard at Work

Chapter 3: The Unexpected

Chapter 4: Brigg trouble

Chapter 5: Katfight Epilogue

Prologue

July 11, 1995 CE Jake walks up to Callie’s door, and rings the bell. She opens the door, and says, “We’re going to mom and dad’s again. You ready?”

“Same as every time.”

They drive to a suburban neighborhood on the other side of the city and stop in front of a well-kept house. He gets out of the car, and opens her door for her. They walk to the door and ring the bell. A slightly pudgy peach colored She-Kat with greying hair answers the door.

“Calico, my dear, how are you?”

“I’m fine, mom, you know Jake.”

“Hello again, Mrs. Briggs.”

“Leonard, get down here – your daughter is here with her boyfriend.”

Her father races down the stairs. He is a rather slender grey-blue furred Tom with blue eyes. “Calico!” He hugs his daughter and kisses her on the forehead.

“I love you, Daddy,” she says after her father has stopped hugging her.

“Howdy Jake.” Mrs. Briggs goes back to the kitchen and Callie follows her.

Leonard and Jake sit down and start talking. “How are things at the Salvage Yard?”

“Not bad – we aren’t so backlogged on our mechanic work anymore. How’re things at Pumadyne?”

“I found out that the project I’ve been assigned to is a weapon to destroy the SWAT Kats.”

“Sounds like major trouble,” Jake replies with a shaken look on his face as he thinks, ‘Uh, oh, he still doesn’t know I am a SWAT Kat.’

“I like them, they are heroes, and I’ve been working on a weapon to kill them. I can’t believe that Pumadyne hates them that much! I quit today when I found that out.”

“Why does Pumadyne hate them?”

“The SWAT Kats have destroyed the Satellite Laser, the Macrobots, the Behemoth, and the Blue Manx. It has cost Pumadyne almost fifty billion in research, development and prototyping on those weapons.”

“What kind of weapon system is it?”

“A new jet – even more advanced than the Blue Manx.”

“Sounds like the SWAT Kats are in for a fight.”

“That they are. I only wish I could warn them.”

‘You have warned them,’ Jake thinks as he says, “Can you give any specifics?”

“No. I can tell you it’s faster than their jet, the uhh, TurboKat. It is also designed to handle two direct missile impacts. That is, if the force-field goes down.”

Jake stammers, “Crud! I-w-th-they’re goners!”

“Yes, I simply thought it was a new jet for the Enforcers, not a specific purpose weapon.”

“Dinner’s ready, you two scientists,” they hear Tanya Briggs call from the kitchen, and they hear Callie’s laughter at her mom’s joke.

The two toms get up and head into the kitchen. All four sit down to an excellent dinner, and the two toms continue talking.

“I know your brother left Pumadyne over a year ago and four months ago started a tech research firm of his own.”

“Yeah, so my niece has told me.”

“Do you think he’ll accept me as a researcher?”

“It depends – he probably needs the staff. Just don’t mention me and Callie, and you might get the job.”

“Why?” “It’s a long story, but, to make it short, I won’t marry who my family wants me to marry, and they disowned me because of it.”

“And, you learned this from your niece?”

“She’s been rebellious lately.”

“Ahh, I was lucky. Calico was never rebellious – strong willed, yes – but not rebellious. Brian, however, a different matter entirely.”

“Too much of you in him, Len,” Mrs. Briggs says

“Yes, that sometimes is not a good thing,” he replies.

Callie rolls her eyes.

Later on that night, after Callie and Jake leave, Callie notices that Jake is being awfully quiet.

“What’s wrong, Jake?”

“Your dad told me that Pumadyne is working on a weapon to destroy the SWAT Kats and that he was on the team assigned to that project. He doesn’t want to see the SWAT Kats destroyed.”

“Oh, no. Jake…”

“I know, Callie, I know.”

They drive to her home in silence.

Chapter 1: Preparations

“Chance! Where are you? CHANCE!!!!” Jake yells as he enters the garage.

Jake runs into the living room and leaps up the stairs. Chance comes out of his room looking groggy.

“What in the, can’t a Kat get some sleep, Jake?” he growls.

“ChanceCalliesdadworksforPumadyneandheletitslipthattheyareafteruswithavengeancewe needtostriptheTurboKatIIandrefithersoshesevenbetterthanbefore!!!”

“What? Slow down, Jake – this old pilot’s tired.”

Jake pants for a second, then says, “Callie’s dad worked for Pumadyne, and he told me that he was put in charge of developing a new weapons system. He quit when he found out that it was meant to destroy the SWAT Kats.”

“Crud. We need to start a massive upgrade on our jets, buddy.”

“How large are your M-24s compared to the J-18s?”

“Not much larger – we could probably put them on the J-18’s places.”

Jake runs into his room and comes out a minute later, dressed in overalls. “I’m going to spend a lot of time down there. The TurboKat II is getting the massive refit. If anyone, even Callie, calls – unless she needs Razor – I’m out of town.”

“Why the TurboKat II?”

“Because the one J-18s on it still ain’t fully repaired from our adventure in the alternate dimension.”

“I thought ya fixed it.”

“Temporarily at best. Haven’t you noticed slight shortage of J-18s and other parts out there, as Feral’s making our modifications to his jets?” Jake points out toward the yard.

“Oh, yeah, I forgot. I’ll be right down there.” Chance turns around and starts muttering something about his seemingly hyperactive partner.

Jake runs downstairs and goes down the living room hatch. He moves the TurboKat II off of her launch lift and starts working to remove the J-18s. He is joined a few minutes later by Chance.

“Calm down, buddy. I ain’t done modifying the M-24s to run on JP8.”

“Then, get working.”

Jake gets frustrated and pulls every piece of skin and heat-shielding off the TurboKat II’s engine area. He puts it all in a pile near the TurboKat II. He runs over to Chance, who is taking his time on the one M-24. Jake tries to start on the other, having moved past the panic stage to the manic stage, but Chance wards him off.

“Hands off my engines, grubber.”

“Chance…”

“Look, pull your J-18s and make sure that the engine compartment can hold these, and I’ll work on these. It’s taken me long enough, but I think I finally got it so these’ll burn JP8 without exploding.” He pats the engine he’s working on.

Jake backs off, and returns to the Turbokat II. A few hours later, Chance goes upstairs, and starts the workday. Jake has managed to remove one J-18, with help from the various cranes and lift mechanisms in the hangar. He starts on the second J-18 and gets it removed several hours later.

Chance comes down with a pizza and a six-pack of milk.

“Lunch, Jake.”

When Jake doesn’t respond, Chance forcibly removes Jake from the TurboKat II’s airframe and hauls him over to the computer. He puts Jake in a chair and ties him down to it.

“You’re not going to last long without food or drink, sureshot. Now, eat this all down, and good old Chance will let you get back to playing with your toys.”

Jake glares at Chance, who stands there.

“Eat, Jake, or I’ll give ya a noogie that you’ll never forget.”

“I could eat if my arms weren’t tied down.”

“Oh, silly me.” Chance unties him. “Now, eat.”

Jake picks up a piece of pizza and starts eating. He finishes the pizza and downs a can of milk. He gets up and takes measurements of the M-24s, and compares them to the J-18s. He pulls out the welder and gets some spare material and starts welding support brackets into place.

Meanwhile, Chance heads upstairs and starts work again. Jake starts working on the fly-by-wire control system he was designing. He installs the actuation servos that operate the flaps, rudders, and elevators and is testing them when Chance comes back down with Callie and two subs. Chance heads back upstairs and gets ready for a date with Felina.

“What are you doing, Jake? Chance tells me you haven’t gotten any sleep since the night before last.”

“Upgrading the TurboKat II, with everything we might need.”

“Because my dad was assigned to a weapons project to destroy you two?”

“Yeah, he told me it was almost completed.”

“Jake, let’s get some food in you and get you to bed – you look like a zombie.”

“I–” he looks at Callie, who is standing there with a pleading look on her face. “Ok, I’ll stop for now.”

He goes upstairs, she turns off the hangar lights and follows carrying the subs. They eat the subs in silence, and when they are done, she says, “You are going to bed and getting some sleep.”

“No, Cal–”

“Jake, you’re going to get some sleep, one way or another.”

“Callie, I’m not tired.”

“You look dead, Jake. You’re going to bed.” She grabs his paw and starts trying to tow him upstairs. He resists, and she can’t move him anywhere. Finally, she stops and wraps her arms around him. “I know more than one way to get you in your bed,” she says, then she kisses him.

“Later, you two lovebirds,” Chance says as he heads out the door.

When she stops kissing, Jake looks at her with wide eyes and says, “I-I’m really not tired, Callie.”

“You look dead. Now, either you go upstairs and get some sleep, or I’ll go with you and make you tired enough.”

He looks defeated as he mutters, “Fine, let me shower first, I’m rather dirty.”

She looks at him, and notices the grunge on his overalls and that he smells like a combination of hydraulic fluid, sweat, and fuel.

“OK, shower. Then, go to bed, or I’ll go with you.”

She releases him and turns on the TV as he climbs the stairs. She hears him showering while she watches the six o’clock news. When his shower is done, she turns off the TV and goes upstairs to his bedroom door.

He walks out of the bathroom clad in a towel with his fur freshly brushed out, too. He stops and looks nervous as he sees her.

“Now, are you going to bed, or do I come in there with you?” she says, arms crossed, head tilted to one side with her eyes narrowed.

He fidgets and looks sheepish as he says, “I can’t sleep when I worry. I’ll go to bed, but I won’t be able to sleep, and I’d just get back up as soon as you leave.”

Her expression softens, and she drops her paws to her sides as he talks. She softly asks, “Do you want me to help take your mind off of it?”

Looking even more nervous, if that was possible, he nods. She takes his paw in hers, then leads him into his room.

Chance comes home some time later and sees Callie’s car. He looks around for her and doesn’t see her. He gets a hunch that she’s in bed with Jake and takes a peek in Jake’s room. He sees the both of them asleep in bed and her clothing in a pile next to the bed. He walks to his room and gets changed out of his suit into his overalls.

He goes downstairs to get a can of milk, then goes down to the Hangar and starts working on one of his M-24s. He thinks he finally found the proper modifications to get it to burn the much more volatile fuel and hooks it up to a test rack. He powers it up, and it ignites, the thrust causing the engine to strain against the mountings and causing the test rack’s mountings to visibly loosen. He powers it down, then proceeds to make the same adjustments to the other one. He gets done and goes back upstairs, looks at his alarm clock, and sees 3:44 on it.

“Crud, that’s five hours. It didn’t seem like it.” He shrugs and gets ready for bed. “Oh, well. I hope Jake don’t mind if I sleep in today.”

Chapter 2: Hard at Work

Chance wakes up, gets up, and gets the things he’ll need to shower. After his shower, he heads down and doesn’t see Callie’s car there, so he goes down the hatch to find Jake trying to work on his fly-by-wire system in the Hangar.

“Enjoy last night, sureshot?” he asks with half a smile on his face.

“Yeah, I did,” Jake’s voice sounds slightly echoey from inside the cargo bay.

Chance smiles as he says, “I got the M-24s running on JP8 last night. I wanna verify they’ll run again, then we can install them.”

“When you powered the one up, it scared Callie awake, which, in turn, woke me up.” Jake peeks at Chance from under the TurboKat II, then goes back to what he was doing inside.

“Uh, oh…”

“Before you ask, yeah, we did.” Jake sounds slightly embarrassed.

Laughter was Chance’s only response.

“Well, all I’m waiting for is two operating engines. I have the rest of the system installed and ready to go. I’m also retaining all the cable controls in case of failure.” Jake ducks and walks out from under the TurboKat II.

“What’ll we call the TurboKat II now, Jake? She’s beyond the TurboKat’s specs.” Chance asks.

“I dunno, let’s still call her the TurboKat II. After we’re done, we’ll make the same upgrades slowly to the TurboKat,” Jake states.

“Problem, Jake, we don’t have any more M-24s,” Chance says worriedly. He grabs a warm can of milk that had sat there from yesterday’s lunch and opens it. He continues, “I don’t have all the materials in the yard to even make one if I tried, what with the parts shortages.”

“Crap. That means the TurboKat II will have to be the only one with the engines.”

“Think we can call on Professor Hackle tomorrow?” Chance asks, then downs the last of his can.

“Yeah, but let’s get these engines in first. I’ll work on my fly-by-wire system and my new missile ID system while you test them. Oh, and use the other test rack; I need to replace that one.”

“What’s up with that new ID system?” Chance walks over to the M-24 on the damaged testing rack and proceeds to take it off.

“So I don’t have to manually enter the missile types into the computer every time I reload,” Jake says as he starts working.

“Ohh, I see, makes it faster for reloading.”

“Bingo.”

Jake hooks up all the wiring, the actuation servos, and tests each connection as he goes. He gets done and connects the cable controls up as a backup system. He starts working on sorting transponder chips and placing them in every missile in the inventory. He installs transponder sensors in every missile mount on the TurboKat II, then on the TurboKat. He links the hangar computer to the TurboKat II and uploads a new program. He does the same to the TurboKat, then checks the TurboKat’s loadout. All the missiles register properly. He takes a dummy missile and places a transponder that would ID as an Octopus missile on it, then tries every mount on the TurboKat II. It registers as an Octopus missile. He tries firing it, and it simply drops to the floor, just like it should.

Chance starts the hookup he needs to test the M-24s and powers up the first, eyeing the mountings, which don’t even seem strained. He throttles it up to half power, then to full and checks the mountings and then punches the afterburner button. He checks the measured engine thrust, and his jaw hits the ground. It’s a full 4000 pounds of thrust more at afterburn, and anywhere from 1500-2700 pounds more throughout the whole range of operation than the M-24’s paper specifications. He powers down, and, when it’s cooled, he removes the engine from the rack and dollys it over to the TurboKat II. He hooks the other one up and starts testing it, getting the same thrust ratios at the same throttle levels. He powers the second one down and waits for it to cool.

While Chance is waiting for the second one to cool down, he and Jake install the first M-24 and connect the hydraulics and fuel lines. They then install the fly-by-wire servos and the cable controls.

Chance looks at the time and says, “Crud, Jake, you missed your date tonight.”

“We’ll never go on dates again if we die, buddy.”

“Need help?” they hear a female voice and turn to see Jake’s niece coming off the ladder.

“Lee, what are you doing here?”

“Hi again, Miss Clawson.”

“Daddy’s fuming about the latest Pumadyne weapon that promises to put him out of business. I had to leave.”

“What is it now? A new jet for the Enforcers?” Jake asks, half-sarcastically.

“Yes, they’re field testing it day after tomorrow.”

They both stop and look at her.

Jake says, “Ya sure? We got word that Pumadyne has developed a jet designed with one purpose, to destroy us.”

“Uncle Jake, be careful.” She looks worried about their safety.

“I gotta get you home before your father comes looking.”

Jake gets changed into Razor, then grabs a dual Cyclotron and orders his niece on. He drives her home.

Upon arrival, Mike runs out of his house.

“Here’s your daughter, sir. She seems quite the rebellious type – keep a better eye on her.” Razor tries to disguise his voice by speaking hoarsely.

“Leona, what are you doing with a vigilante!?”

“I had to leave – I couldn’t stand listening to your fuming anymore. He picked me up before I got to Uncle Jake’s.”

Razor turns the Cyclotron and leaves, fast. M

Mike turns to his daughter, and crosses his arms.

“Leona, you are grounded for a week – go to your room.”

“But, daddy, all I wanted was to see Uncle Jake.”

“No buts – go to your room.”

Chapter 3: The Unexpected

A dark figure enters the Salvage Yard and starts looking for clues. He enters the Garage and finds a small trapdoor in the office, covered by a rug. He silently moves the rug and opens the trapdoor. He sees a light on and hears a conversation.

“Jake, gimme that wrench, willya?”

“Sure thing, buddy – catch.”

“OW! Ya need to improve that aim – any closer and I’d never have kittens.”

He hears laughter and the response, “My aim’s fine, you just can’t catch.”

“*good natured belly laugh* Get back ta’ work, Jake.”

He decides to climb down and does so, silently.

“I hope all of our modifications work. That new Pumadyne jet has me worried still.”

He sees the lower half of his brother sticking out from under one of two TurboKats.

“Before you forced her to go home, didn’t your niece say that it was gonna be tested day after tomorrow?” He sees a tiger-striped tom making hydraulic connections to a very sleek jet engine on the same TurboKat that his brother was half inside.

“Yeah. I hope we can keep up and destroy it.”

Mike takes a quick glance around, then climbs out, quietly closing the hatch.

He leaves and goes to his labs. He prints out the specifications and schematics for three prototype systems meant for a helicopter that he had been developing. He takes the company truck and loads the systems onto it, a high-powered laser, a force-field generator, and a sympathetic radar stealthing system. He removes the Clawson Research tech logo from each component. Then, he takes several power cells for the systems and loads them up as well. He drives to the Salvage yard and checks on the two vigilantes. They are still working. He offloads the equipment into the garage and places the specsheets on them. He quickly writes a small note and leaves.

Jake and Chance come up several hours later and notice the equipment. Jake sees the note and reads it, then gives it to Chance. The note simply says:

SWAT Kats,

This equipment is for you. Use it wisely in your fight.

An ally

“An ally, huh? Who would leave this equipment for us, and how would they know who we are?”

“I don’t know who made these. Look here.” Jake points to a place on the one piece of equipment where a tech firm logo used to reside.

“Hmm, thoroughly covered his or her tracks.”

“Let’s get it downstairs, then get some sleep.”

“Sleep sounds good.”

They take the equipment down to the Hangar and go to bed.

The next morning, they get up and start going over the specsheets on their mystery equipment. Chance picks up the laser. He checks the mounting points on it, then proceeds to take the cement machine gun off the TurboKat II, and installs the laser in its place. He places the new power cells in the cargo bay storage area and straps them down. He takes some electrical cabling and connects the new laser to the existing electrical system, then hooks the new batteries into the electrical system as well.

Meanwhile, Jake is checking over the force-field generator. He gets done and goes over to the TurboKat II and secures it in the cargo bay storage area. He hooks it up to the electrical system and checks Chance’s work. Chance looks a bit sheepish as Jake switches all the connections on the batteries. Jake then checks the connection to the new laser and gives Chance a thumbs up. They double check the alignment on the new laser on the turret. They test the force-field generator, then stop for lunch.

After lunch, Chance checks over the radar cloak. He installs it into the Turbokat II and hooks it into the electrical system. He then routes the cloak, force-field, and laser controls into Jake’s panel.

Chance changes into T-Bone and goes to Hackle’s house in the TurboKat II after a short test run of all systems. But, the elderly professor isn’t there. He returns and starts loading missiles. When that was done, he goes up, and starts watching Scaredy-Kat.

Chapter 4: Brigg trouble

Jake takes the towtruck and drives to Callie’s house. She’s not there. He drives to City Hall and doesn’t see her car there either. He then goes to Enforcer HQ and sees her car there and parks nearby. He walks into HQ and asks the Kat at the receiving desk where the Deputy Mayor is. He’s directed to Commander Feral’s office. He waits in Feral’s secretary’s office and smiles as he sees Callie walk out.

He stands, walks over to her, and says, “Callie, I am really sorry. I forgot about our date last night.”

“Look, Jake, I don’t have the time to talk right now. I’ll see you later, ok?”

“Ok, Callie.” He looks downcast and heads into the nearest stairwell.

She heads into the elevator and takes it down. Then, she leaves the building, gets in her car and drives off.

He comes out a few minutes later, gets in the truck and goes home. Chance looks worriedly at his diminutive partner as he pulls up with a sad look on his face.

“Wha’sa matter, buddy?”

“Callie’s mad at me.”

“Tell me what ya both said.”

Jake does exactly that, and Chance shakes his head. “Jake, it’s probably nothin’ – don’t let it worry ya.”

“I was going to ask what you are doing with the rest of your day.”

“Watch Scaredy-Kat.” He gestures to the TV. A cartoon explosion can be heard.

“Figures. I’ll be down in the Hangar, practicing flying on the computer.”

“Why?”

“So I can practice flying without blacking out.”

“Ok, I’ll call ya for supper.”

Jake goes down and gets in the sim cockpit and starts practicing taking off, landing, and canyon tag. He also gets in mock fights and ends up getting shot down most of the time, simply because he can’t fly to compete with the computer like Chance can.

Chance calls him for supper right in the middle of a fight with the Red Lynx flying in the Blue Manx. Chance calls again, comes down and watches as the simulator shuts down when Jake’s jet gets blown out from under him.

“Supper, buddy.”

“OK, Chance, I’ll be right up.” Jake gets out of the simulator. He heads upstairs and finds Chance, Callie, and Leonard Briggs.

“Hello, Razor.” Leonard crosses his arms and looks critically at Jake.

“Now ya know. I guess… I don’t know.” Jake looks kind of downcast.

“I hope ya like steak,” Chance calls from the kitchen.

“I ate before I came, thank you,” Leonard states.

“Daddy…” Callie starts.

“You know your mother would kill me if I ate anything but her cooking,” he whispers.

“Daddy, sit, eat – I’ll deal with momma when I take you home tonight,” Callie says, tugging on her father’s paw.

“It’s probably his dad’s ‘Killer’ steaks,” Jake says. “That’s something I’ll never pass up.”

They finally get Leonard into the kitchen and seat him. Chance serves up everything, and he gets the usual ‘This is great!’ reviews.

Chance says, “Well, it’s my dad’s recipe – he loves cooking.”

“What does your father do, eh…” He falters at remembering Chance’s name.

“Chance, daddy,” Callie whispers.

“Chance,” he continues.

“He went through culinary school a few years ago – back when I had just joined the Enforcers – but couldn’t get a job as a chef until just last year, when the Grand Palais finally hired him. It’s good to see him at a job that won’t kill him and that he really enjoys.” Chance smiles lopsidedly.

“Really? Your father is a chef?”

“Yeah, he’s always loved cooking, but it’s hard to find a good job as a chef.”

“Do you have any brothers or sisters?”

“Two sisters. I was twelve when Yvonne was born, and twenty-three when Gabrielle was born.”

“You’re old enough to be you’re sister’s father, then.”

“Yeah, hey, wanna see the Hangar, Mr. Briggs?” Chance asks.

“With pleasure.”

Chance leads him down the nearest hatch.

When they are alone, Jake says, “Callie, I’m really very sorry about last night.”

“You wouldn’t have been able to see me at my house anyway. I was at mom and dad’s. Mom was out shopping, so I finally told daddy about Razor.”

“Does he approve?”

“No, but he says that he will support my decisions. He just hopes that I don’t regret you.”

“I hope so too, Callie. I don’t want to hurt you.”

“I’m sorry for brushing you off earlier, Jake. Feral was really upset, and, in turn, he upset me.”

“Something we did?”

“No, a pilot went AWOL and left a note threatening the SWAT Kats.”

“We’ll be flying in the enhanced TurboKat II tomorrow.”

“You’re done with the TurboKat II?”

“Yeah, I’ve also done a touch of work to the TurboKat.”

Chance’s voice comes up from the Hangar, ‘Hey, Jake, Mr. Briggs says that there’s more stuff he can tell now.’

Jake and Callie climb down the hatch and Leonard starts by saying, “The technical specifications for the new jet, simply called ‘Katkiller’, are twenty-four cargo bay missile mounts, two high-powered lasers, and four deployable attack drones. They have a force-field, and the armor is a tri-titanium/agrecite/depleted uranium alloy. The M-24 megathruster has finally been built. Two of these engines provide the thrust to more than keep up with you. It also has an integrated ramjet boosting system.”

“Tritanium/agrecite/duranium megalloy, huh? That would be about forty percent more effective than our heatshields,” Jake says.

“The TurboKat II has two M-24 megathrusters on either side of an old M-20.” Chance says, grinning.

“What?”

“C’mere, take a look, and, after you do, I’ll explain how I got them.”

He looks, and indeed they are M-24 megathrusters. He looks at Chance, who starts by asking him, “Do you remember Turmoil’s air carrier?”

“Yes, you two shot it down.”

“Well, she had told me that she had finally developed the M-24 megathruster, so a few days after her ship went down, I took out the SubKat and retrieved two of them. I’ve spent time since then modifying them to run on JP8, not the JP7 she had to use.”

“JP7 is the fuel they have to use in the Katkiller. If fueled by JP8, the engines would explode.”

“That explains why I only found two. Pumadyne must’ve run a salvage operation of its own.”

“Hmm, it looks like you two have managed to match some of the Katkiller’s specifications,” he says as he looks over some of the systems.

“Our turret laser, force-field, and radar cloak were left for us by a mysterious ‘ally’,” Jake says, then hands the note to him, and he reads it.

Callie, who had been silent, pipes up and states, “Daddy, it’s about time for you to go home and get some sleep. Momma will start worrying.”

“She’s just like her mother,” Leonard mutters just loud enough for Jake to hear. “Yes, dear,” he says as Jake starts laughing.

They depart, leaving Jake and Chance a little less worried about the next day. They turn off the Hangar lights and go to bed.

Chapter 5: Katfight

Around nine the next morning, they get Callie’s alarm signal.

“We’re here, Ms. Briggs,” Chance states.

A male voice replies, “Well, I’m not Ms. Briggs, but I am waiting for you, SWAT Kats. I expect to see you flying in five minutes, so I can kill you.” They hear the comm cut off.

“Razor, that’s Mike Barnes’ voice.” Chance dashes off and leaps down the hatch into the Hangar.

Jake follows, and, when he sees Chance down there, he shouts, “Should we take both or just the Turbokat II?”

“TurboKat II, Razor.”

“Roger that.”

They quickly get changed and move the TurboKat. They move the TurboKat II, and get in, then take off. They are flying over the City when they target lock an incoming jet.

********************************************************

“Computer, activate force-fields.” He switches to a private comm channel, “Control, this is Barnes. TurboKat in sight, am engaging.”

“Affirmative, Barnes. Your only objective is to destroy the SWAT Kats,” a disguised male voice states.

Barnes switches back to the combat frequency.

He throttles up to full and launches a missile. “Launching Starburst missile,” he mutters. It impacts a force-field and does no damage. “That’s unexpected, and so is that.” He loses radar lock on the SWAT Kats’ jet, but still sees it, until the pilot of the jet starts playing canyon tag.

********************************************************

“Incoming, T-Bone – the force-field is online.”

The missile splits into five parts, surrounds the TurboKat II, and each one explodes inward, toward the TurboKat II. The force-field holds steady.

Razor activates the Radar Cloak while T-Bone throttles up to full and starts flying between buildings. Razor dons the turret helmet and starts taking potshots at the Katkiller. Several laser blasts hit the force-field on the enemy jet, but the force-field doesn’t even seem to be fazed.

“Pumadyne jet, this is the TurboKat II – we’re ready for anything you can throw at us,” T-Bone calls over the comm as he goes to three engine afterburn and pulls into a climb.

********************************************************

“Pumadyne jet, this is the TurboKat II, we’re ready for anything you can throw at us.”

He sees the third engine ignite, then all three engines go to afterburn as the pilot pulls into a severe climb.

“Katkiller to TurboKat II, we’ll see about that.” He goes to afterburn, redlining his engines. He climbs after the SWAT Kats. He states, “Firing Lightning Missile,” as he fires a missile.

The missile impacts and overloads the force-field on the TurboKat II. They fire a laser shot, then the laser turret retracts. He’s about to fire a Starburst Missile when he sees four small ramjets extend out of the fuselage, and the TurboKat II rockets off at over Mach 5.

********************************************************

As the missile hits, the force-field shuts down.

“Go to Speed of Heat, T-Bone!” Razor shouts as he gets off a last shot, then shuts down the turret.

T-Bone pulls the left-paw lever, and the heatshields deploy. Suddenly, they are pressed back hard in their seats by the thrust of all seven engines.

“You can run, SWAT Kats, but I can still destroy you!” they hear over the comm. They start tracking the Katkiller following and matching speed.

Razor thumbs the mute button on his part of the comm panel, “T-Bone, head into that cloud bank. I’ll eject – you continue playing with him, and I’ll be back with the TurboKat.”

“Roger, good luck buddy.” T-bone climbs into the cloud bank and shuts down Speed of Heat so Razor can eject. He goes back to Speed of Heat as soon as Razor is clear. Razor barely manages to maintain control of his Ejektor seat as the Katkiller screams past him.

********************************************************

“You can run, SWAT Kats, but I can still destroy you!”

He activates his own ramjet booster system. Pretty soon, he is matching speed.

He tracks the TurboKat II enter a cloud bank and leave out the other side. He doesn’t notice a small radar blip appear in the cloud and continues to chase the TurboKat II.

********************************************************

T-Bone heads out towards the desert, near their test range, and tries to shake his pursuer. He keeps this up for at least fifteen minutes when he hears, “T-Bone, come in – I’m in the TurboKat.”

“Roger, shutting down Speed of Heat.”

“Be right with ya – ETA ten seconds.”

As he shuts down, he pushes the stick down, doing an upside-down loop-de-loop and ending up underneath the Katkiller. He fires a Megavolt missile and banks right as it launches. It hits, and the force-field wavers.

********************************************************

Razor flies his seat at top speed to the Salvage yard. He sees Burke and Murray leaving the yard, having just dumped their trash, so he ditches the Ejektor seat on the far side the yard and uses his deltapack to coast into the yard and over to the Hangar doors. He presses a button on his glovatrix, and the doors open. He coasts in and runs down the ramp as his feet touch the ground. He uses the dolly and moves the TurboKat on the lift, then takes off.

He activates the comm, “T-Bone come in – I’m in the TurboKat.”

“Roger, shutting down Speed of Heat.”

“Be right with ya – ETA ten seconds.”

********************************************************

He is still chasing the TurboKat II when he hears over the comm, “T-Bone come in – I’m in the TurboKat.”

“Roger, shutting down Speed of Heat.”

“Be right with ya – ETA ten seconds.”

“What? Two TurboKats?” he shouts. He sees the TurboKat II pull an upside-down loop-de-loop and fire a missile at him. It hits, and he registers minimum damage to the force-field. He looks at the radar and gets a target lock on a TurboKat incoming on his six.

“Launching attack drones. Setting target as Turbokat.”

********************************************************

“T-Bone, he’s launching his drones – work on taking them out while I work on him.”

“Roger, Razor.”

T-Bone target locks one drone and fires a Matchhead missile at it. It impacts and destroys it. He locks on a second one as Razor fires a scrambler at the Katkiller. The scrambler impacts, but the force-field barely wavers.

A drone fires its laser at the TurboKat, but does little more than scorch the heatshields.

“That makes me mad – another ding I’ll have to buff out! Two Megavolts!”

As T-Bone fires at the second drone, Razor fires two Megavolt missiles at the Katkiller. The force-field shuts down.

T-Bone taunts, “Bye-bye, Barnsey-warnsey,” as Razor fires a Matchhead at the Katkiller. It impacts, but doesn’t do any apparent damage.

“Crud, I forgot! Well, let’s try this.” Razor fires a Lava missile at the Katkiller, and it literally melts almost half the skin off of it upon impact.

The pilot of the Katkiller ejects as Razor fires another matchhead at it. Upon impact, the matchhead tears the Katkiller apart in a massive explosion. The two remaining drones deactivate and drop like rocks into the desert below.

********************************************************

He sees two drones disappear in explosions and sees several missiles hit his force-field, which finally shorts out.

“Bye-bye, Barnsey-warnsey.” The TurboKat II’s pilot taunts him, but he doesn’t have time to think of where he had heard that before, when a missile impacts.

He looks at the MFD that displays damage and sees none. He’s about to taunt them when a second missile impacts, and the damage MFD goes red. He looks at it, and it registers extreme heat, airframe damage, armor destroyed, and the second engine offline.

He hits the eject button and rockets away, as the TurboKat fires another missile, destroying the Katkiller. The TurboKat II uses a grapple and grabs his ejection seat. He watches the TurboKat take point position, while the one that has him takes right echelon to it. They fly over the city and head straight to Enforcer HQ.

He watches as Commander Feral stands there with the Deputy Mayor, Lt. Feral, and half a dozen armed Enforcers. He’s dropped off, and both TurboKats land as he is taken into custody.

“Lieutenant Barnes, you’re under arrest for going absent without leave, attempted murder, and conspiracy to murder,” Commander Feral states, then turns to the armed guards, “Take him to a holding cell.”

They watch as Barnes is taken off the roof, being pushed and shoved harshly.

“Thanks, Commander,” T-Bone says.

“Hmm, just get out of here, SWAT Kats, and let the Enforcers handle this.”

“Oh, ask Callie and Callie’s dad about that jet, Razor says.

“I already did, or I should say, they came to me this morning. I’m starting a full investigation of Pumadyne and their current research projects. Now leave, before I have Sgt. Micheals start shooting at you.” As if to make the point, Sergeant Micheals cocks his gun and looks at Feral.

“Same old Feral – all we missed today was a call for chopper backup,” T-Bone laughs.

“If you don’t go home, SWAT Kats, I’ll call for chopper backup to shoot at you two.”

Razor looks at the Commander and sees a smile on his usually gruff face.

“Commander!” Callie exclaims, taken aback.

“Uncle!” Felina says and looks at him. When she sees him smiling, she sighs, and rolls her eyes, “You’re incorrigible.”

T-Bone is already taking off in the TurboKat II as Razor gets in the TurboKat. He waves at Callie, who simply smiles at him.

He takes off and flies towards the desert.

Epilogue

Upon arriving, they reluctantly go upstairs so they can start work clearing the stuff left by Burke and Murray. Jake sees a familiar car drive up.

Mike Clawson steps out and walks up to them.

“Jacob, how did the equipment I leave for you function?”

Jake stands there, speechless and dumbfounded.

Chance says, “It worked fine. You’re our mysterious ‘ally’?”

“Yes. Jacob, did you think I wouldn’t recognize you when you dropped off Leona?”

“I well,… tried,” Jake recovers just enough to stammer out.

“Well, it failed, I know my younger brother when I see him in person, and I spied on you later that night. I knew then that the weapon they had developed was to destroy you as well as put me out of business. So, I decided to help you out and show Pumadyne what to expect when messing with the Clawsons.”

“Do you want your equipment back?” Jake asks.

“No, you can keep it. I just stopped by to invite you to dinner at my house tomorrow.” He turns to Chance, “You are also invited. And, bring your ladyfriends.”

“Well, you know both of them – mine’s the Deputy Mayor, and his is our sister-in-law.”

“Which sister-in-law?”

“Felina Feral.”

“Looks like the Steeles are getting what they deserve.”

“Lauren aside, you don’t like them either?” Jake seems surprised.

He smiles as he says, “She doesn’t even like her family. She refuses to let Leona associate or be associated with them.”

“I don’t blame her. They’re a worse influence than me.”

Mike nods his head and says, “Claire and Max will be there, too.”

“Did you tell them I’d be there?”

“Yes.” He looks at his watch. “I have to go. See you tomorrow night. Goodbye, Jacob.”

“Bye, Mickey.”

Mike gets in his car and drives off.

“All’s well that ends well. Let’s get ta’ work, buddy, and get through some of that backlog,” Chance says as he walks into the garage.

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