Warnings: Violence, language
Legal Katerwauling: SWAT Kats, Mega-Kat City, and everything else SWAT-ish is owned and/or copyrighted by Hanna-Barbera, Inc.
Summary: A Bright and Shiny Future begins.
Author’s notes: Please ignore the ‘stolen’ title. See if you can spot an Author or two from the Archive(although one did undergo a sex change) in this fic. You’ll also find a mirror name for someone else’s character if you’re really paying attention. ?
A/N Addendum 06-12-05:
I did have one story before this, but it’s been over three years now, so I’ve pretty much scrapped it for now so I can finish up this series and move on.
‘A foolish man will flee his destiny, a wise one will embrace his destiny, and one wiser still will change his destiny.’ -Sutek the Mad, Ultima V
September 26, 1996
Jake gets home late, and parks his motorcycle, a de-tuned, disguised Cyclotron, next to Callie’s car. He walks in the door and is worried that he doesn’t see Callie anywhere. He goes to the living room, where Callie is sitting on the sofa, looking exhausted, and trying not to cry. Jake sits next to her.
“What’s wrong?” he asks.
“Later, Jake. I’ll tell you later.” she says, hanging her head to hide the tears.
“Something’s wrong. Tell me.” he insists.
“It’s…I don’t want to lose you.” she says, placing her arms around him and pulling him to her.
“Steele.” he replies, a tinge of anger in his voice. “What’s he done now?” He places his arms around her and buries his face in her hair.
“He’s still after Felina, and his sister is after you.”
“I know that. Did they threaten you?” he asks softly.
“She did. She said if I didn’t divorce you, my political career would be over. I told her I don’t care about my career as much as I care about you.” she stops, letting a strangled sob out.
“What did she say then?”
“She’d make my life a living hell until I divorced you.” She starts sobbing.
“Callie, excepting death, I’ll never leave you.” he whispers. He tilts her head up with his paw so she is looking at him. He says, “I love you. I have since the first day I saw you.” then he kisses her softly.
“But what about…” she asks after they parted lips, tears still streaming down her face.
“Don’t worry about the Steeles.” he says before kissing her again, “I can see to it that they can’t hurt you.”
She pulls away from him, “You’re not going to…” she asks in fear.
“I can talk to my parents, if they’ll talk to me, if not, Mike and Claire can plead my case for me. Either way, my parents can take care of the Steele situation.” He holds her close to him, trying to calm her.
“I thought you were going to do something else.” she responds after a few minutes.
“No. I’ll get my parents to get her away from you. That’s all.” she clings to him, resting her head on his shoulder.
“Relax, love, I’m here, I’m won’t leave you.”
She relaxes, and after a few minutes, falls asleep in his arms, emotionally exhausted. He gently picks her up and carries her to their room. Carefully he changes her out of her clothes, into pajamas, then places her in bed. He goes to the kitchen, rummages around the fridge for food, then goes to bed himself, holding her as they sleep.
* * *
The next morning, Jake calls the Salvage yard.
“MegaKat Salvage, Chance speaking.” Chance’s familiar voice filters through the phone.
“Hey, buddy, I’m gonna take some of the day off, I have some personal business to attend to. It also involves Felina, so I’m going to talk to Max when I talk to Claire.”
“Don’t tell me that crap with the Steeles is still going on?”
“Yes, it is. Darlene threatened Callie yesterday. If I can’t talk to my parents, I’ll get my sibs to.”
OK, buddy, I’ll let Felina know what you’re doin’.”
“All right. I’ll be in when I’m done with everything. Oh, can you tow Callie’s car there? It’s been overheating like crazy lately, and I don’t want her stranded. That’s why I’m also taking her to work.”
“Sure thing. Bye, buddy.”
* * *
“Sir, there is someone at the door.” Christopher Sharpe looks nervous as he announces the visitor to his employer.
“Well, who is it?” Theodore Clawson asks while reading the morning paper.
“Sir, it’s…him. He says he won’t leave until he’s talked to you.” the butler looks nervously at his employer, knowing that he shouldn’t mention Jake’s name.
He looks up at the butler over his reading glasses as he pauses reading the newspaper. “Very well then, send him in.”
“Hello, Father.” Jake says, as he is ushered into the room.
He asks Jake, “What do you want?”
“I know I’ve been disowned, but I want to ask a favor.”
He narrows his eyes and glares at his son, “And what would that be, money?”
“No. I just want Darlene to leave my wife alone.” Jake returns, in a forceful voice, returning his father’s glare.
“If I were to do anything, what could I do? You broke the contract between the families.” He picks the paper back up, a sign that the conversation was over.
Jake tears the paper from his father’s paws and hisses angrily, “Father, you know just as well as I do that the Steeles are poor wannabes compared to us and the Ferals. Why did you and Mother ever make that agreement?”
Theodore slams both fists onto the table, and returns his son’s angry hiss, “Jacob, you don’t understand, we were almost broke when Michael was a kitten. They bailed us out, us and the Ferals. That’s why we made the agreements!”
“I guess I made a bad choice asking you to get her out of my life. I love Calico, and I’ll do whatever it takes to keep Darlene from hurting her.” He throws the paper onto the table. “Goodbye, Father.”
As he turns to leave, his father asks, “Jacob?”
“What?” Jake replies in a deadly soft voice.
“Are you happy with her? Do you love her?”
“I love her more than anything. She’s the best part of me, and if I lost her, Jake Clawson would die.”
“I’ll see what I can do about getting Darlene away from you. Don’t expect me to give you your inheritance back, though.”
“I don’t care about the money, just Callie.” He pauses, and looks his father in the eye, his own look softening, “Thank you, Father.”
“Get out of here. I don’t ever want to see you again, do you hear me, Jacob?”
“Yes, Father. Goodbye, and thanks again.”
Theodore picks up his paper again as Jake is escorted out of the house. Katrina Clawson comes down the stairway several minutes later, “What was all the noise, I heard voices.”
“That was just…Jacob. He wants Darlene out of his life.” Theodore stares at the newspaper, ignoring the look his wife was giving him.
* * *
Jake drives into the Salvage Yard as Felina pulls out. They wave to each other as they pass. He parks his bike, and heads into the garage.
“Hey, buddy. I actually managed to talk to my father, and he said he’d try to get Darlene away from me. Max and Claire are out of town, so I couldn’t talk to them.”
“What’s wrong?” Jake stops and looks at Chance.
“Nothing, I’m just nervous about being a dad in a couple more months.” Chance says from under the hood of a car.
“It’s a bit early to worry about that, isn’t it?” Jake asks pointedly.
“Maybe. I dunno, I just wonder if I can be a good father, and a SWAT Kat, too.” Chance stops, wipes his paws on a rag, and takes a gulp of coffee from a mug sitting nearby.
“Still having second thoughts?” Jake asks as he goes into the kitchen.
“Would it help to know I’ve had second thoughts about being Razor from day one?” Jake states.
“Yeah, actually, it does help. If you can hang on even with your doubts, so can I.” Chance responds as Jake comes back out from the kitchen, cradling a coffee mug.
“That’s the Chance I know. Oh, where was Felina going, another doctor visit?” Jake says as he gingerly sips the steaming hot coffee.
Jake shoots Chance an odd look as Chance replies, “Yeah, but not for her. She said something about picking up Callie.”
“Why? It’s not as if she’s pregnant.” Jake stops and considers his wife’s behavior in the last month or so, “Wait a sec, do you think she is?”
Chance points a wrench at Jake, “Why don’t you ask her? Now help me out with her car, the engine block has a crack as long as your forearm.”
Jake rolls his eyes and groans, “Engine pull. Ugh.”
“Yeah, ugh. Now get yer tail over here and prep that replacement short-block. The sooner we get it done, the sooner we can work on that backlog. If you haven’t noticed, it’s building up again.”
Jake sets his coffee on a different part of the workbench, and starts swapping components that Chance pulled off of the other engine onto the new one.
* * *
‘I must be careful. The Enforcers, incompetent though they may be, cannot be alerted.’ The PastMaster peeks around a corner, before dashing across the hallway. He points his watch at the door’s electronic lock, and blasts it, overriding the circuitry. He closes the door behind him after he enters.
He strides over to where the Metallikats’ heads rest, and a bolt of energy from his watch hits them. The light of their eyes flickers, then comes on steady.
“Wha…” Mac says, but is interrupted.
“Silence, you metal fools, unless you want to be destroyed.” The Pastmaster hisses quietly. “I have a purpose in mind for you.”
He picks their heads up and places them in a sack, then teleports out of the building, onto the roof of a nearby skyscraper. There, he pulls their heads on the ground, then with a magical bolt of energy, they find that their bodies have been magically re-constructed.
“Who are you?” Mac asks as he looks over his magically refurbished metal body.
“I am the PastMaster, immortal enemy of the SWAT Kats. I need your help to defeat them. In return, you can have this monstrosity of a city.”
“What makes you think we’ll help you, PastMaster?” Molly asks in a distrustful, angry voice.
“Of all the enemies of the SWAT Kats, you are the ones who hate them the most. You would like to see them dead just as much as I. Besides, I can get you into a place where you can assume immediate control of the City. You could not hope to get there by yourselves.”
“What do we do?” Mac asks.
“Take these and be ready to use them.” The PastMaster points his watch at a patch of ground, and a bolt of energy lances out from it. Two of the Metallikats’ weapons appear there. They pick them up and put them on.
The Pastmaster casts a teleportation spell, and The MetalliKats find themselves in a control room of sorts. Technicians look up in surprise as they teleport in, and are killed as the Metallikats open fire.
The PastMaster takes the Robot Control Matrix helmet and places it on Mac’s head. In the densest urban section of MegaKat City, worker robots suddenly revolt, overwhelming the Enforcers. The robots start tearing apart cars and the occasional Enforcer tank, under orders to start building bigger, badder robots. As Mac’s control extends over other portions of the City, worker bots start capturing the populace, and force them to start building robots.
The PastMaster smiles cruelly as he sees the Enforcers overwhelmed on the monitors.
* * *
Callie is in the City Hall’s lobby, waiting for Felina. She hears someone approach, and looks up to see Jake’s father.
“Hello, Mr. Clawson. What may I do for you?” she asks.
“Do you truly love my son?” he asks pointedly.
“Yes.” she replies, slightly baffled.
“So, you didn’t marry him for money?”
“He’s a junkyard mechanic who’s several million in debt. I certainly didn’t marry him for money.”
“You know he has, or did have an inheritance of over fifty million, don’t you?”
“I know. I’m the reason he was disowned.”
“No, he refused to marry Darlene, and dishonored the family, both.”
“I’m the main reason he refused to marry Darlene. Since his refusal to marry Darlene is the reason he had been disowned, That makes me the reason he was disowned.” She looks at the time, “I’m sorry, Mr. Clawson, I have to go to a doctor’s appointment.”
“Why, if you don’t mind my asking,” he replies.
“To see if I’m going to have your grand-kitten.” she says as she walks out of the office.
He quickly strides up to her and says, “I’m curious as to whether or not as well. If you wouldn’t mind, may I accompany you to the doctor’s office?”
“I suppose, if you really want to. You’ll have to ride with me in Felina’s car.”
“That’s not a problem. I can send my chauffeur home or have him follow us.” he smiles rakishly as he adds, “I can see why Jacob is so enamored of you.”
“Well, I know where he gets his looks.” She smiles back at her father in-law as Felina pulls up.
“Hello, Felina. It’s good to see you again.”
“Hello, Mr. Clawson. What are you doing here?”
“After the doctor’s visit, could you take me to my house?” he asks.
“I guess so.” Felina looks at Callie inquisitively, who only shrugs.
“Thank you. I’ll be right back.” he says as he walks to a limo, and instructs the driver to return to his house.
“What’s up with Mr. Clawson?”
“I have no clue.” Callie replies.
Just then he comes back, and gets in the back seat.
* * *
Several hours later, on their way to Mr. Clawson’s mansion, they see worker robots going berserk, and the Enforcers being overrun.
Felina glances at Mr. Clawson, then makes the decision, as the first of many tears start flowing down her cheeks, “Callie, call our boys!”
Callie reaches into her purse and pulls out her communicator, pressing the button.
“We’re here Callie,” she hears Chance say tersely.
“Guys, the robots are going berserk! They’re attacking the Enforcers, and trying to herd civilians. We need you!”
“Oh, no.” she hears Chance say, “God no. I had hoped this day never came. Jake, it’s time to fly our final mission!” she hears, just before Chance cuts off contact.
“What? NO!” Callie gasps.
A worker robot that is firing on several Enforcers is directly in Felina’s path, so Felina guns the throttle, ramming it, then slams on the brakes and opens the door. The Enforcers manage to get in before she has to drive off. A robot, freshly built by some of the smaller robots, takes off from the ground and targets them. Felina puts all of her Enforcer training into dodging laser fire from the robot’s cannon.
* * *
Chance hears a car pull into the yard, and looks up to see a limousine. The chauffeur gets out and opens the back door. A middle-aged she-Kat dressed in blue, her tan fur and brown hair both tinged with grey, steps out of the limo and walks toward the garage.
“Hey, Jake! Some lady’s here in a limo!”
“Huh? Mother?!” Jake asks as she walks into the garage.
“Jacob. Why were you at the house today? Your father wouldn’t tell me.” she says.
Chance is surprised at the fact Jake had her height, build and eye color.
“I just wanted to ask father to get Darlene away from Callie.”
“Who is Callie?”
“My wife. We sent wedding invitations. I knew you’d want to come, but I guess you never got them. I’m sorry, mom.”
“No matter now. You are looking well.” she remarks, smiling at her youngest son.
“She’s been taking care of me. I couldn’t ask for more.”
“That’s good to see.” she says, just as the alarm goes off. Chance rushes over and punches the talk button.
“We’re here,” he says tersely, glancing at Jake and his mother.
Both toms turns white under their fur when they hear, “Guys, the robots are going berserk! They’re attacking the Enforcers, and trying to herd civilians. We need you!”
“Oh, no. God no. I had hoped this day never came. Jake, it’s time to fly our final mission!” he says aloud, then gets a determined look on his face as he punches the button again.
“No. Mom, call everyone you know, and get them out of the City.” Jake says hurriedly.
“Why?” she asks, alarmed at her son’s anxiousness.
“If we’re right, MegaKat City has fallen, and her heroes will die.” he say before turning and running into the house after Chance.
She goes in after him, and sees an open trapdoor. She starts climbing down, and turns around just as she hears a hydraulic lift activate. She sees her son dressed in blue and red, wearing a mask, press a gloved paw against the canopy of a black jet, and mouth, ‘I love you, momma’ just as the jet drops out of sight. She climbs out after hearing the roar of jet engines. She runs over to her limousine, and says, “Take us to New Cymric.”
Trembling, she picks up the car phone, and starts calling all of her friends and acquaintances. She doesn’t notice the battered green pickup truck coming the opposite direction.
* * *
A silver gate opens in front of City Hall, and Eugene steps out, letting the gate collapse behind him. He pulls out a prepared spell scroll, and stands ready, staff in paw, pointed at the sky. He grits his teeth, readying himself for the tremendous amount of magical force he will soon need to expend.
* * *
Professor Hackle gets out of his pickup and hobbles inside. He goes down to the Hangar and loads as much equipment as possible into the TurboKat, then takes off. He manages to control its flight to his house, and lands near the hangar.
After he gets the TurboKat parked next to its unfinished replica, he calls all of his robotic servants and has them guard the hangar and house. He activates the micro-fusion reactor, and powers on the defense matrix and forcefields.
He drives toward New Cymric in an all-terrain truck that has a mobile laboratory.
* * *
“Targeting, several dozen small drones on the ground, and a couple…T-Bone! That’s Felina’s car!”
“Crud! Get ‘im, get ‘im!” T-Bone shouts in worry.
“Locking on, firing!” Razor’s voice is tense.
The missile impacts, blowing the flying robot apart. Two other robots in the area start firing missiles at the TurboKat and all the Enforcer Choppers that come to the scene. More robots enter the area and start firing at the Enforcers, too. T-Bone manages to dodge the missiles, but none of the Choppers are so lucky.
Almost all the robots in the area start firing lasers at the TurboKat II, as T-Bone dodges and Razor starts launching missiles. T-Bone can’t dodge the dozens of laser blasts coming at him, and the forcefield absorbs them. Pretty soon however, the forcefield fails, and the lasers start cutting into the heatshielding. An engine takes a hit, then an elevator gets locked into place as a laser blast destroys the actuator servo. The TurboKat II plummets, out of control, right toward City Hall.
“Razor, we’re outta control! We gotta eject!”
Several more laser blasts hit the jet, causing power failure. They hit the eject buttons, and nothing happens.
“I guess this is it,” Razor whispers as City Hall looms ever larger in front of them, “Goodbye, Chance!”
Another laser blast hits, and the control panels explode, leaving them injured and unconscious. They enter the Time Vortex that suddenly forms in front of them as an explosion blossoms around the jet from the side of City Hall.
* * *
On the ground, Eugene creates a Time Vortex, and it opens just enough for the TurboKat II to enter it. He simultaneously casts the spellscroll, which causes a huge fireball to explode from the skyscraper outward right when the TurboKat II would have hit, masking the Time Vortex.
“Off to the Council.* They will, no doubt, want an explanation as to this temporal alteration.” He mutters as he summons a silver gate and steps through.
* * *
Felina sees a flash of light as the robot trying to blast her is blown apart with a well placed missile. She notices the robots firing missiles at the TurboKat and all the Choppers, then as the Choppers are destroyed, they start concentrating solely on the TurboKat.
She hits the brakes as she sees the TurboKat hit and flying out of control, right toward City Hall. When the TurboKat impacts and explodes, Felina shouts, “NO! Chance!” as Callie screams, “JAKE!”
Theodore looks at the horrified expressions on the two she-Kat’s faces as they both start crying. He moves over and pushes Felina out of the driver’s seat, then guns the throttle to escape the robots that are now coming after them.
The tires squeal and the nose of the car lifts into the air as the engine hits its power band. He manages to maintain control as he brakes and turns the wheel to throw the car into a skid, taking a corner at an insane speed. He mashes the gas again, and the tires squeal again before hooking up as he accelerates to triple digit numbers.
He hits the Interstate out of the City, and they drive past the Salvage Yard. A very short time later, they see a limousine. Katrina Clawson sees her husband in an old muscle car, and has the driver pull over, just as the muscle car does. She gets out and rushes over, saying, “Theodore, our son is a…’
She’s interrupted as he whispers, “I know. He’s dead.” He turns to the Enforcers in the car and says, “Everyone that can, get in the limousine. I’ll return to the City and try to save a few more Kats.”
Felina shouts, “It’s suicide, Mr. Clawson!”
“My son died saving our lives, it’s the least I can do to try saving others!” Seeing the looks on all of their faces, he shouts, “My decision is final!” as he gets back into the car and turns around.
He smokes the tires as he takes off, heading back to MegaKat City.
* * *
An Enforcer Chopper lands at MegaKat Greens, and two Enforcers jump out. They run over to the mayor shouting, “Mayor, MegaKat City’s been overrun by the robots, we gotta get you to safety!”
“Come Mayor, Commander Feral sent us to get you to safety!”
“No. I’m going to call Feral right now.”
“No time sir, the robots are almost here!” they yell as they forcibly pick up the Mayor, toss his golf club to the side and throw him into the Chopper.
“My lucky nine-iron!” he yells as the Chopper rapidly takes off.
* * *
Kats run screaming, Enforcer ground troops flee, Enforcer tanks retreat while firing at robots, the few remaining Enforcer Choppers evacuate as many as they can, and all the Enforcer jets take off and head towards New Cymric. After giving the order to evacuate, Commander Feral picks up several other Enforcers in his patrol car and leaves the city, heading toward the Salvage Yard in hopes of finding something to use against the robots.
After telling the Enforcers to wait unless ordered to leave, he enters the Hangar. He hits a switch labelled Thunder Truck, and sees the towtruck lowered into the Hangar via a specialized lift.
He climbs out as the truck undergoes an automated conversion, and tells the Enforcers to leave for New Cymric. He goes back down, and finds the truck awaiting a driver. He climbs in, and starts up the truck with the flick of a switch and the press of a button. The system automatically responds and reactivates the lift, sending the towtruck into it’s portion of the garage. He drives out, heading into MegaKat City. He almost runs over Mr. Clawson in Felina’s car as he loads as many Kats as possible into the car.
“Mr. Clawson, what are you doing with Felina’s car?” he bellows, hanging out of the cab.
“Helping evacuate. My son died protecting me, it’s the least I can do!” he yells as the last kat gets into the ‘Cuda, and he drives off.
Feral drives on. Two Enforcers limp by, one supporting the other, and he stops.
“Sergeant!” Feral yells.
“Sorry Commander, our tank was destroyed, and he’s hurt pretty bad!”
“Get him in the passenger seat, and take the control of that laser cannon on the back, we’re going to help cover everyone’s retreat!”
“Sir, yes, sir! C’mon, bud, we gotta ride.”
Feral floors it as a flying robot dives at them firing. The sergeant handling the laser fires several shots, shearing off the stubby wing of of the robot, sending it hurtling through the air until it smashes into the ground. Several more robots follow suit, and pretty soon, the robots ignore Enforcer Tanks to concentrate on this fast, deadly opponent.
Feral barely manages to avoid fire as he starts retreating himself. The sergeant continues firing until the laser no longer has any power to fire with.
* * *
After receiving initial reports on the situation in MegaKat City, Commander Jeffrey Weisberg declares a state of heightened alert, and has his experienced pilots scramble and fly toward MegaKat City. He orders all trainees in the air or in armored vehicles to patrol the outer edge of his City, New Cymric. He also informs all other Enforcer Commanders in the region.
* * *
Upon his approach to New Cymric, the driver sees a roadblock consisting of Peacekeeper tanks and patrol cars. He pulls to a stop as a young tiger she-Kat in a cadet’s freshman uniform waves him over.
“Sir, where are you from, and what is your destination?” she asks in a stern voice.
Felina pulls out her Enforcer ID, and steps out of the Limo. “Yvonne, report.”
“Lieutenant? Commander Weisberg has us guarding all the roads into the city. What happened in MegaKat, sir?” she asks, saluting.
“Someone took over the Robot Control Matrix, presumably. The worker robots revolted and started building other robots. Others tried to capture civilians and force them into building robots. We don’t know who’s responsible yet.” she said, even as she remembered what Chance had told her, months beforehand.
“If I may ask, what are you doing here?”
“I was off-duty, taking Callie to the doctor. Mr. Clawson was with us, and when the TurboKat exploded…”
She gasps, then she asks in a fearful voice, “Oh, no. They’re dead aren’t they?”
“Yeah.” Felina blinks back her tears and forces her voice to be calm. “Mr. Clawson got us out of the City. He should be by soon in my car. Who’s in charge?”
“Collin Feral, I think he’s a cousin of yours.”
“Get him over here. I need to talk to Commander Weisberg. I can’t do that unless we’re allowed into the City.”
“You could always order me to let you in.”
“I better leave that decision to your superior.”
“Yes sir.” Yvonne calls over her radio for him, and he appears in a short time.
“Cousin, sir, what are you…” he says as he runs up.
“Please, Collin, I have a status report on MegaKat City, I need to get in to talk to Commander Weisberg.”
He sighs, and quickly makes a decision, “You can go.”
“Thanks cuz.” she says before getting into the limo.
A few minutes later, just outside of Enforcer base, the limo stops.
As she steps out, Lt. Commander Steele walks toward her. “Well, if it isn’t Felina Furlong.”
“I have a status report on MegaKat City, Steele. I’m going to see Commander Weisberg now.”
“No you aren’t. You’re going to leave, now.”
“Get out of my way Steele, or I’ll tear you apart.” Felina purrs dangerously, unsheathing her claws.
“Threatening a superior officer can land you in prison, Lieutenant.”
“So can delaying information that may be vital to a city’s continued survival, Steele.” they hear from the steps of the building. Steele turns to see the husky grey tom walk up, “Uh, sir, I…”
“Can it, Steele. What do you have for me, Lieutenant?”
“Sir, an unknown force has taken over the Robot Control Matrix, and turned all the worker robots into a fighting force. The City has fallen, and the Enforcers there were mostly powerless to stop it. The vigilante SWAT Kats are also dead, sir. They were killed in the initial assault. At the rate new robots were being produced, New Cymric and Lake Faroe are both in immediate risk of takeover.” Felina says as she salutes, even as her eyes tear up and her voice starts cracking.
“I understand. Steele, get on the horn and issue these exact orders, ‘Any refugees from MegaKat City are to be directed to Leopard Stadium. Medical teams and emergency triages will be set up in every school gymnasium.’ I’ll issue a press release in fifteen minutes.” he turns back to Felina and says, “I’ll give you and everyone with you quarters here for the night. Past that, you’re on your own.”
“Understood sir.” He turned to leave and she said, “Sir, a Ted Clawson will be here shortly, driving my car. It’s a black ’71 Barracuda.”
“Commander Feral’s old car?”
“He gave it to me as a present, just after I graduated from the Academy.”
“Where is Commander Feral?”
“I… don’t know sir. I had the day off.”
“Very well. Dismissed, Lieutenant.”
* * *
“There you are,” Callie hears as she paces up and down a hallway.
“Mr. Clawson,” she says as he walks up to her and places his arm around her.
“He told me he loved you dearly, Deputy Mayor, that he couldn’t live without you.”
“I know. I don’t think I can go on without him.”
“There you are!” they both hear a yell.
They both turn to see Darlene Steele storming toward them, her brother at her side.
“Where’s Jacob?” she demands of Callie.
“Dead.” Mr. Clawson replies with considerable venom.
“You murdered him, bitch!” Darlene shrieks at Callie, then takes a step forward.
Ted interposes himself between Darlene and Callie, and snaps, “Just hold on a minute, Darlene Steele, my son and his partner died protecting Lieutenant Furlong, myself and the Deputy Mayor, not to mention Lieutenant Furlong’s unborn kitten and my own unborn grandchild. You will leave my daughter-in-law and my family alone as of now, or there will be serious repercussions against your family.”
“Now just a minute, Mr. Clawson.” Steele starts as Darlene looks cowed.
“You wait a minute. I finally understand my youngest son. Disowned though he may be, he followed his heart in all he wanted to do. He died protecting those he loved. His wife and kitten will be cared for by my family, as will Lieutenant Furlong and her kitten.”
Callie stares at her father-in-law, her mouth agape.
“You’re making a mistake Mr. Clawson,” Steele says before he leads his sister away from them.
After they have left, Ted turns to Callie and says, “I never really knew Jacob. Let’s go someplace and talk. There is much I want to know about him.”
She nods and takes his offered arm.
* * *
On the airstrip near New Cymric’s Enforcer HQ, an Enforcer jet squadron lands, each bearing the Katscratch Enforcer logo. Commander Cheryl Blake gets out of the lead jet, and is greeted by Commander Weisberg.
“Commander Blake, what is your business here?”
“Commander Weisberg, I heard what happened in MegaKat. Do you want me to lend your City my jet squadron and most of my FireHawk choppers and PeaceKeeper tanks, just in case the robot rebellion tries to capture New Cymric?”
“Won’t you need them for your City?”
“For the robots to get to my City, they almost have to go through yours. We’ve also placed my City into Code Orange status.”
“Strict curfews, overlapped patrols, et cetera?”
“We’re not quite shoot on sight yet. As you know, I do have a military Salvage yard much like MegaKat’s, and a lot of the hardware there can be refurbished at little cost since most of it is perfectly intact. I reviewed the yard’s inventory on my way in. I can refurbish and use the older tanks and Choppers while you take my newer ones and use them to defend your City. In my opinion, I’m protecting myself by helping you. Unfortunately, I can’t spare many officers outside my Jet Squadron.”
“That’ll be fine. It’ll give the recruits and Academy Cadets a chance to train on actual equipment. I accept your offer, Commander Blake.”
“Good. I thought you would, so the convoy of tanks is already on its way, and the Choppers will be on their way within an hour. Expect them all by morning.”
“Very well. When are you returning to Katscratch?”
“That depends. Lieutenant Commander Stevenson is very capable. I have no qualms about leaving him alone for a short time. Besides, I would very much like to see Commander Feral.”
“If he survived. I don’t know that yet.”
“I won’t say why, but, I need to know.”
“Are the rumors about you two true then?”
“That’s for us to know, and no one else to find out.” she replies.
* * *
“Who are you, sir?” the young Enforcer Cadet queries the old kat in a large vehicle.
“Professor Isaac Hackle. Unfortunately, I designed the robots that have gone berserk. However, that was well over ten years ago when I was still working for Pumadyne. Provided those fools haven’t changed their design, my knowledge can be used to fight them.”
“I think we should escort you to Commander Weisberg.”
“That is an astute choice. Lead on.”
A few minutes later, the ThunderTruck rolls to a stop at the checkpoint and Feral says, “Commander Ulysses Feral of MegaKat City, I need to speak to Commander Wiesberg.”
“Go on in, sir. Commander Wiesberg said to send you to him if you showed up.”
“Thank you, Cadet.”
* * *
“Ulysses!” Commander Blake yells as she runs up to him. He holds her tightly as she clings onto him.
“Commander Feral, good to see you’re alive. What’s with the SWAT Kat truck behind you?”
“I know who they are, and decided to use one of their vehicles to help cover the retreat. My City is gone. I have nowhere to go. Commander Wiesberg, I’m requesting permission to stay here for now, until orders come in from Central Command.”
“Granted, Commander Feral. I wish we could help you out in this difficult time.”
“Thank you. For the time being, I and the remnants of my Enforcers are under your command.”
“Well then, my first order is to help with getting the refugees safely in the City. Make sure your Enforcers still capable of active duty are out on the perimeter.”
* * *
Two days later,
Ulysses Feral gets out of bed and sighs heavily, then looks at the sleeping form of his comparatively petite lover.
His thoughts rest on their son and his life away from both of them. He gets up, pulling his uniform on, then walks over to the table, and sits down. He starts writing a letter. When he is finished, he stands up and leaves the room.
* * *
She wakes up and as she looks around, she sees his clothing missing. She gets up herself and walks around, then sees the note on the table.
My dearest Cheryl,
I regret to tell you that I may never come back. I will be heading for MegaKat City soon to start fighting to retake my City. I regret many things in my life, most notably you and Collin. I never was the husband I should have been to you, nor was I the father I should have been to him. I still love you with all my being. Please tell Collin that I’m damn proud of him, and hope he becomes a better Enforcer than this stupid old tom.
I still love you and always will,
* * *
“Felina, wake up.”
“Huh?” she moans groggily, “Uncle?”
“Come on, Felina. It’s time to leave for MegaKat.”
“Yes sir. It’s better than sitting around here doing nothing.” she mutters as she half-slides out of bed.
He hastily leaves the room and continues on his way to rouse the other willing MegaKat volunteer fighters he’d secretly gathered in the previous two days.
“I knew this would happen, Commander,” Hackle says from inside the elevator as it opened, “I’m coming with you. My expertise with robots in general makes me an invaluable asset. I worked for Pumadyne for over thirty years designing their weapons and robots. I can help you.”
“I’ll take all the help I can get.”
“Good. The swamp and the nature preserve should provide adequate protection against the robots. We’ll gather all the forces at the volcano in the Preserve and decide what to do from there. The Volcano itself would make a rather defensible fortress.”
“I agree. It will be rather difficult to read a Kat’s heat signature from inside an active Volcano.”
“Then let’s do it, Commander. Let’s retake our City.”
*Mention of ‘The PastMaster Always Strikes Twice’, Pastie mentions ‘The Council’ In this fic, it’s a council of his (and Eugene’s) fellow Time Preservers.
Good grief, my old writing style sucks…
If anyone wants to try to make stories post-Metallikat City, contact me and I’ll consider it.
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