Merry Christmas, everyone! I know that by the time I get this story up, Christmas will be over. Think of this as held-over for Christmas. I’ve nothing else to do, but listening to the snowfall outside my window really puts me into the holiday mood. Well, let’s give it a go.
Snow was gently falling in the streets of MegaKat City on the afternoon of Christmas Eve. And the streets were even busier with kats rushing in and out of stores, shopping for the perfect gifts for their loved ones. At Jake and Chance’s Garage, Katarina was wearing a red and green sweater and blue jeans while she decorated the pine tree in the living room. She started singing when she was putting up the lights.
“Deck the halls with boughs of holly. It’s the season to be jolly and be thankful for all that we have. All the lights and decorations put up in anticipation of the joyful celebration that’s on it’s way. We’re counting the days til it’s time for Christmas day.” Then she started putting up the ornaments.
“Oh, and God bless us everyone, the good and the bad, the happy; the sad. Oh, and God bless us everyone. Here’s to family and friends. It’s good to be here again.” She smiled as she looked out the window to see kittens playing in the street.
“On the streets there’s children laughing. People smile as they are passing. Christmas time is here, our waiting in done. Wishing it could last forever, not just twelve days in December. Through the year, let’s try to remember that special way that everyone feels it’s the magic of Christmas day. Oh, and God bless us everyone. The good and the bad, the happy; the sad. Oh, and God bless us everyone. Here’s to family and friends. It’s good to be here again.” Then she started putting the artificial snow on.
“So fill your heart with love and joy and through the eyes of girls and boys. Share their wonder, live through their joy, it’s easy to do. Just open your heart, the spirit will come to you.” Then she placed the star at the top of the tree.
“The spirit will come to you.” Kari (you’ll be seeing a lot of me in the future, so get used to it) and Ann are in the kitchen listening to Kat sing while they are preparing eggnog.
“She’s got quite a voice,” Ann said.
“Yeah, really. She reminds me of Celine Dion.”
“Don’t you mean Celine Catton?”
“I keep forgetting my singers are different than your singers.”
“I heard you got some good vocal chords yourself, Kari.”
“Oh, well, I wouldn’t say that. I don’t really brag about myself, Ann.” Then the phone rang. Kat picked up the cordless phone from the living room.
“Kat? It’s Jake.”
“Hi, Jake. What’s up?”
“Well, we’ve just been invited to a Christmas party down at City Hall. You guys want to come?”
“Kari, Ann, Jake’s on the phone and he wants to know if we’ll come to the Christmas party over at City Hall. You want to come?” Kat called to them.
“I’m free,” Ann said.
“A human go to a kat party? You’re kidding, right?” Kari asked.
“Uh… Ann says she’ll go, but Kari’s kind of worried about going to a feline party when she’s a human. And I really don’t want to keep her here by herself, not on Christmas Eve. What do you suggest?” Kat asked into the phone. Kari rubbed her chin, then snapped her fingers. She typed on the miniature keyboard on her left hand and started typing. Then she pressed “Enter”.
“Tell Jake I’ll be coming along, Kat,” she said.
“Well, it appears she changed her mind. We’ll be around say 7:30?”
“OK. See you there.” Then Kat turned the phone off.
“All right, Kari. What do you have in mind about going to the party as a human?”
“Who says I’m going as a human? Look in your spell book,” Kari said, coming into the living room. Kat walked over to the bookcase and pulled out her spell book. She flipped through the pages and found a new spell in it.
“Well, a transformation spell for humans. What won’t they come up with next?”
“All right, just lay the spell on me, Kat.”
“All right, here goes.” Kat spoke in Latin as the two book pages started to glow. The light grew bright as she continued reading. Later at City Hall, Jake, Chance, and Buster were waiting by the punch bowl for the girls.
“Its 7:43. Where are they?” Chance asked.
“Ah, you know she-kats. They’re always late,” Jake said.
“But I always heard Kari’s always on time.”
“But the girls are driving her so she has to be late.”
“Sorry to keep you guys waiting,” a voice said. They looked up and saw Kat in a red dress, Ann in a green dress, Tigera in a light blue dress, and a young she-kat with shoulder-length dark brown hair, brown eyes, and peach fur in a black dress with red roses on it. She has hoop earrings, and a necklace around her neck with a diary key and a quarter at the end with a name on it: Kari.
“Me-yow. Did it hurt?” Jake asked, walking around Kat.
“Did what hurt?” Kat asked.
“When you fell from heaven.” Kat softly chuckled and nearly blushed.
“And who have we here?” Chance asked as he looked at the new she-kat.
“Don’t tell me you don’t recognize me as a feline, Chance,” she said.
“Kari? What happened to you?”
“She invented a new spell in my spell book that turned her into a feline. There was no stopping her. Once she types something on that keyboard thing of hers, it’s typed,” Kat said.
“Well, I’m not standing around here all night. I’m gonna go mingle.” Then Kari separated from the group.
“Think she’ll be all right?” Buster asked.
“She’s old enough to take care of herself. She’ll be fine,” Ann said. Kari walked over to the serving table on the other side of the room. She looked at the food with disgust.
“Kat food, yuck. Well, I got new taste buds as a kat, so I might as well take a taste.” She took a piece of fresh catnip and stuck it in her mouth. Then she swallowed it.
“Purr… Not bad. Maybe I could use it on a little tuna. Oy, what am I saying?” As she backed away from the table, she bumped into a well-dressed teenage kat with a plate full of food. The plate fell to the floor, not breaking but spilling the food.
“Oh, excuse me. I’m so sorry,” she said, stammering then knelling down to pick up the food. Great, my first night as a kat and already, I’m a wreck, she thought.
“It’s all right, really. I should’ve been watching where I was going,” the kat said. Then they looked at each other. He had sky-blue eyes, blonde hair parted in the middle, light brown fur… And the cutest dimples you ever saw. OK, calm down, it’s just the catnip talking. Remember: you are a human. But he’s *so* cute! Kari thought. Kari cleared her throat and got to her feet. The kat did also.
“Name’s Jeff Bombay. What’s yours?”
“You can call me whatever the hell you want. No! I mean… Uh… My name’s… My name’s… Damn, what is it?” Kari asked herself. Katarina was watching behind a corner. She whispered in Latin and pointed her finger.
“Ragdoll?” Jeff asked.
“Huh? What made you say that?” Kari asked.
“Your necklace.” Kari looked at her quarter necklace and saw that the name had changed from “Kari” to “Ragdoll”.
“Uh… Yeah, that’s it! But, I really don’t like being called Ragdoll. Call me Dolly. Yeah, that’s it: Dolly. Dolly Gilmore. I’m, uh… Visiting friends for the holidays.”
“Really? Um, I know we just met and all, but do you care to dance?”
“Oh, well, I, uh, I really don’t dance that well.”
“You’re kidding? A pretty thing like you not knowing how to dance?” Kari giggled and blushed.
“Well, I wouldn’t exactly call myself *pretty* and I’m not kidding.” Jeff looked at the band when the music started.
“I’ll teach ya, c’mon,” he said.
“Oh, well, uh…” Kari said. Without another word, the two strolled onto the dance floor. Chance and Tigera watched them dancing a slow song from the dinner table.
“Isn’t that cute? It must be her first real dance,” Tigera said.
“I hope she doesn’t get too attached to that kid. She’s not going to stay here forever,” Chance said.
“She said it herself that she was only visiting friends.” When the song was almost over, Kari and Jeff looked into each other’s eyes. Just as they were moving closer to each other, someone screamed. Kari gasped and looked to find a large robot crashing into the building.
“It’s every kat for himself!” Mayor Manx shouted over the crowd’s yells.
“Guys, go get help. I’ll hold this monster off,” Tigera said to the Kats. They nodded and ran into the hall.
“Jeff, I gotta find my friends. I’ll be back,” Kari said, rushing through the crowd. She found the others in the hall while the robot was terrorizing everybody.
“Let’s get this show rolling!” Chance said.
“We’ve got some tail to kick! Ice stars!” Kat shouted. Outside, Tigera was trying her best to keep everybody organized.
“Target located,” the robot said.
“Back off, you over-grown tin can! I got a can-opener and I know how to use it!” Tigera growled. Then the Swat Kats jumped in front of her.
“We’ll handle things from here, Ma’am,” T-Bone said. Quiver and Kari stepped up to the robot.
“Terminate intruders,” the robot said.
“Sheesh, why does every robot always wants to kill us?” Kari asked.
“Because you write them that way?” Quiver asked. Kari sighed and raised her hand up. Out of her miniature keyboard came a gun barrel. She and Quiver started firing at the robot, realizing that it was not even showing any sign of slowing down. The robot smacked them both out of the way. Quiver landed behind a bunch of trashcans. Kari landed on the floor.
“Dolly!” Jeff shouted, rushing over to her. The robot then grabbed Tigera in its giant hands.
“Put me down, you junkyard heap!” she growled. Razor took out his whip and cracked it. The whip lashed onto the robot and electrocuted it. Tigera managed to get herself loose, making her fall into T-Bone’s arms.
“Oh, my big strong hero,” she said, kissing his cheek.
“Get off,” T-Bone said, almost laughing and setting her down. Boulder and Shera walked over to Kari and Jeff.
“Are you all right?” Boulder asked.
“Well, I’ve been better,” Kari said.
“All right, where’s Quiver?” T-Bone asked, putting his paws on his sides. Quiver got back to her feet and rubbed her head as she came back over to the Kats.
“I hate it when that happens,” she said.
“Can we have a word with you, Quiver? Outside?” Quiver nodded and the Kats went outside in the snow.
“What did you think you were doing in there?!” T-Bone asked.
“I think I was fighting, T-Bone,” Quiver replied.
“Looked more like napping to me. Thanks to you, Tigera was almost captured by who-knows-what and Kari almost got herself killed because of you.”
“Don’t you talk to me that way! I was knocked down! Didn’t any of you see?!” The Kats kept silent.
“I don’t believe this. My own friends are betraying me! It’s Kari’s own fault that she got hurt! I wasn’t responsible!”
“You were supposed to protect her! You can’t be a Swat Kat if you screw up like this again!”
“Stop telling me what to do! You’re not the boss of me! Stop treating me like a kitten!”
“Well, maybe if you didn’t *act* like one!”
“Oh, screw you! I quit!”
“Fine! Go ahead! We don’t need you anymore!” Quiver’s eyes glowed red and she transformed into a panther. She growled and ran off.
“T-Bone, you– y-you can’t mean what you said,” Razor said.
“The hell, I don’t. She’s gotta learn to be a team player, and she can’t even do that right. C’mon, let’s go.” And then they walked back into the building.
Quiver was out of panther form when she reached the harbor. She sat on a crate and shivered from the cold December breeze. Her ears twitched when she heard a voice. She ducked behind more crates when the voice came closer. She peaked through a crack in the crates to see a she-kat with orange hair and fur in a black leather suit walking with a large robot.
“So Alpha 1’s operation to capture Tigera failed?” she asked. The robot beeped.
“Well, Jettona will not be happy about this.”
So Jettona’s back, huh? We seem to get her more often than any other villain in Kari’s fan fiction. I guess she just likes using her, Quiver thought. Then a shadow loomed over her. She turned around and saw a robot grabbing her. She growled as the robot brought her out into the open.
“Well, well, what have we here?” the she-kat asked. She walked up to see Quiver’s face better.
“It appears to be a Swat Kat.”
“And who the hell are you?” Quiver asked.
“I am Caracal, Daughter of Satan.”
“Aw, not another one.”
“You must be Quiver.”
“And if I am?”
“Then Jettona will be most pleased to have you that she’ll forget all about our older sister, Tigera. She proves to be a hard target with the Swat Kats and all.”
“Don’t you think I’d break free of this hunk of junk sooner than later, Caracal? I’m not your average feline.” Caracal pulled out a black collar with an emerald on it from her pocket.
“I know. That’s why I’m giving you this. With this, you will no longer be on the side of good. With this, you will rejoin the dark side and together, we will destroy the world.”
“Lovely Christmas present and all, but I hope you kept the receipt.” With that, Quiver got free of the robot’s grip. Caracal growled and pinned Quiver to the ground. As she tried to put the collar around Quiver’s neck, Quiver kicked her off, knocking the collar out of her paws. When Caracal got back to her feet, Quiver was out of sight.
“Hmph. Oh, well. Come. We’ll look for her later.” Then she and the robot walked on. When they were out of hearing range, Quiver appeared and looked at the collar Caracal had left behind.
She picked it up and said, “How could such a small stone be so much trouble? I don’t see how it could’ve changed me.” As she stared into the green stone, she felt a strange force come over her. As if in a trance, she tied the collar around her neck. Suddenly, her eyes glowed a dark green and she chuckled evilly.
“My, I’ve forgotten how good it feels to be evil. Perhaps I was wrong. Perhaps Jettona and Caracal need an ally. And I know just the kat for the job.” Caracal and the robot ended up going to the World’s Fair Amusement park on the other side of the city. Deep inside of the House of the Future, Jettona was pacing the floor. When Caracal entered, Jettona stopped.
“So, I suppose you’re going to tell me that those robots failed,” Jettona said.
“It’s almost as if you can read my mind, my dear sister,” Caracal said.
“I may have to go after our dear sister myself. No one else in this dump can do the job right.” Then the doors busted open. Jettona and Caracal looked behind them and saw a figure standing in the bright light.
“How did you find us?” Jettona asked, taking her sword out of its scabbard.
“Your sister wasn’t hard to miss with her 7 foot tall robot,” the stranger said, closing the door behind her and dimming the light. It was a ninja dressed in black, green belt with various ninja weapons, and a full-face mask with eyes and mouth holes.
“Dulcea! Get her!” Jettona ordered to her guards. They all charged at Dulcea, weapons in each hand. Dulcea punched, kicked, threw, and tumbled each of them.
“Hmm… Good help’s so hard to find these days,” she said.
“I should know. What business do you want here, Dulcea? Or did you just want to meet your death?” Jettona asked, raising her sword to Dulcea’s chest. Dulcea lowered the sword with a push of her finger.
“Now, is that anyway to talk to an old partner?”
“Dulcea, you never wanted to join me; only to kill me. I *made* you join me in case you’ve forgotten. I ask again, what are you doing here?”
“How would you like to bring that old partnership back together? I hear you’re having trouble catching your sister Tigera. I figured I could be of some… Assistance to you.”
“And how am *I* suppose to trust *you*? You betrayed me the last time. You became an ally to the Swat Kats.”
“And don’t think my stomach never turned when I got tired of them. They’re too goody goody for me. I want them out of my hair. And I’m sure you want them out of yours as well. Just give me the word…” Dulcea extended her claws and slashed one of the steel walls. She left deep claw marks in the steel.
“And I’ll exterminate them for you.”
“It’s a golden opportunity, Jettona. This Dulcea seems to be serious about her work,” Caracal said.
“I’m still not convinced. Bring me Tigera, and I’ll think about it,” Jettona said. Dulcea’s face showed an evil grin when she nodded.
Back at the party, the Swat Kats decided to stick around just in case another robot decided to crash the party. Kari and Jeff were back on the dance floor while Boulder and Shera were standing guard at various places in City Hall. Tigera is somewhere in the crowd and T-Bone is at the punch bowl. T-Bone took a sip of punch as Callie Briggs came up to him.
“I really appreciate you guys doing this for us. I know it’s Christmas Eve and I’m sure you guys had plans of your own,” she said.
“Hey, even Swat Kats are busy on Christmas Eve. What I’m wondering about is why that robot wanted that she-kat Tigera,” T-Bone replied.
“Do you think it was the Metallikats?”
“Nah, otherwise, they’d try to get her themselves.” Callie nodded.
“Quiver? I don’t know. She and I kind of had a fight a little while ago that caused her to lose her temper and quit.”
“Oh.” She looked at her feet, then back at T-Bone. T-Bone was starring at Razor, who was looking out a window on the other side of the room. Even from this distance, he could hear him sigh.
“I don’t know. Maybe I was too harsh on her. Big brothers tend to do that at times with their little sisters.”
“Well, you know how brother-sister fights get. Quiver’s just a little steamed. I’m sure she’ll come back.”
“And I know how Razor feels about her and the last thing I want in the world is to hurt him.”
“Then maybe you should go out and look for her. That’s what I’d do.” T-Bone nodded. Then the doors busted open. Everyone stopped their activities as a figure parted through the crowds. Jeff held Kari in his arms as the figure walked past them.
“It’s Dulcea. What’s she doing here?” Kari whispered to herself. Then Dulcea came to the Swat Kats, who had Tigera hiding behind them.
“What are you doing here, Dulcea?” Shera asked.
“It’s none of your concern, Shera. I’ve come for Tigera. Give her to me,” Dulcea said.
“I don’t know what this is about, Dulcea, but you’re not going–” T-Bone started, grabbing Dulcea’s arm. She grabbed the arm that held hers and threw him over her shoulder. Various Swat Kats came up to her, which she fought and knocked to the ground. Then she grabbed Tigera.
“What do you want with me?” she asked.
“You’ll know soon enough,” Dulcea said, shoving a needle into her arm and injecting something into Tigera’s bloodstream. Tigera groaned and passed out. Dulcea threw her over her shoulder and started walking back out the door she came in from. Then, Kari blocked the exit.
“You’re not going anywhere, Dulcea,” she said.
“And what are you going to do– Type me a story? Ha!” Kari raised her keyboard up and a mini cannon came out.
“I don’t think so, little girl.” Just as Kari was about to fire, Dulcea took the cannon and crushed it in her paws. Then she slapped her into Jeff and walked out the door.
“What was *that* all about?” Kari asked herself.
“She didn’t hurt you bad, did she, Dolly?” Jeff asked.
“No. I’m all right. It’s the Swat Kats I’m worried about.” Then they walked over to the Swat Kats, who were getting back to their feet.
“Are you guys all right?” Callie asked.
“I’m all right,” T-Bone replied.
“Yeah, we’re fine. What happened to Dulcea?” Razor asked.
“I don’t know, but we’re gonna follow her. C’mon, guys.” Then they ran out the exit.
“Jeff, I gotta go after them,” Kari said.
“Then I’m going, too,” Jeff said.
“There’s nothing you can say to make me back down.” Kari looked out the exit where she saw the Swat Kats getting onto the Cyclotrons.
“All right. Let’s go. T-Bone, wait up!” The two met with them outside and got onto the Cyclotrons.
“What’s *he* doing here?” Boulder asked.
“Sorry, I couldn’t get him to say no,” Kari shrugged.
“It’s going to be rough, Junior. Are you sure you want to tag along?” T-Bone asked.
“Yeah,” Jeff replied.
“Then let’s kick some tail!” Boulder and T-Bone revved the engines and took off. Meanwhile, Jettona was pacing the floor again while Caracal was eating some purple grapes.
“Are you sure this Dulcea is going to deliver?” Caracal asked.
“Not certain, but who knows? She just might have gotten tired of the Swat Kats enough to offer me her services,” Jettona replied. Then, the doors busted open and Tigera’s body was thrown onto the floor where she landed in front of Jettona’s feet. Then Dulcea stepped up.
“One sister delivered as promised, Jettona. Now are you convinced that I want to join you?” she asked. Tigera shook her head and groaned.
“You’ve convinced me, Dulcea. Hello, Tigera.”
“Jettona! Caracal! How did I get here?” Tigera asked, getting back to her feet.
“I told you you’d know soon enough, Tigera,” Dulcea said.
“Who are you anyway?”
“This is our partner, Dulcea, the Queen of Ninjas. She was once an ally to the Swat Kats, but now she has proven herself loyal by bringing you to us, Dear Sister,” Jettona said.
“What do you want with me?”
“We have a plan that will destroy the Swat Kats. You are the eldest of the Daughters of Satan and the most powerful. With you on our side, we’ll be unstoppable,” Caracal said.
“And in case you’ve forgotten, I’m not like the other Daughters. I’m mortal now and I’m the only good Daughter Satan has,” Tigera said.
“Yes, that crossed our minds. Dulcea, take her down into a cage until we can advise a plan to make Tigera join us. Then, you can go after the Swat Kats.”
Tigera struggled to get free of Dulcea’s grip as she led her down the hall.
“Why are doing this to the Swat Kats?” Tigera asked.
“It’s none of your concern, Tigera. Actually, it *is* of your concern, because you are a Swat Kat,” Dulcea replied.
Tigera gasped, “How did you know that?”
“Teammates should know all about their other teammates, Tigera. Or at least, their *former* teammate.”
“Quiver?” Dulcea covered Tigera’s mouth.
“Don’t you *dare* advertise it all over town. If Jettona learned I’m– I mean, *was*– Quiver, the whole plan would bomb. And I’m growing sick of you guys.”
“If it was what T-Bone said–” Dulcea suddenly stopped in her tracks. Her ears twitched as she looked up at the ventilation shaft.
“Well, sounds like our boys are here for the party.” Then T-Bone and Razor came crashing out of the ventilation shaft and landed in front of Dulcea and Tigera.
“Glad you could drop in, boys. You saved me the trouble of looking for you myself,” Dulcea said.
“Traitor, thy name is Dulcea. How could you do this?” Razor asked.
“It’s easy, Razor. We work together, I get sick of you, then I terminate you!” She took out her stars and was about to throw them.
“Oh, no, you don’t!” T-Bone said, pouncing on her.
“Yah!” Dulcea shouted, kicking T-Bone off. Both T-Bone and Dulcea’s eyes glowed red and they growled fiercely as they circled each other.
“This doesn’t look good,” Razor said. Dulcea spoke in Latin and pointed her finger at Tigera. Suddenly, a black collar with an emerald on it appeared around Tigera’s neck. Tigera growled and then she knocked T-Bone to the ground.
“Tigera, what the hell–?!” The last thing T-Bone remembered seeing was Tigera’s fist flying at him.
“Hmph. Takes care of my old boyfriend,” she said to herself. Then Dulcea pinned Razor against the wall.
“Dulcea, what are you doing?!” he asked.
“What I should’ve done a long time ago, you orphan brat!” Dulcea replied, punching Razor in the face. Then he fell to the ground. Tigera rubbed her knuckles as she came to Dulcea.
“You know they’re not stupid enough to have come alone,” Tigera said.
“Yes, I know. The others are probably elsewhere in the fair,” Dulcea said.
“What should we do with these two, then?”
“I suggest you put them away in the cage that we had in mind for you, Tigera,” Jettona said as she and Caracal appeared.
“Oh, Tigera, we’re so proud to have you as a sister. We had no idea how *evil* you can be,” Caracal said, patting Tigera’s shoulder.
“Don’t go all mushy on me, Caracal. The other Swat Kats are probably elsewhere in the fair and we need to go find them,” Tigera said, slapping Caracal’s paw.
“Fine. Dulcea, you go look for the Kats. Tigera, you can take care of these two. Do what you like with them. I’ll permit it.” Later, T-Bone and Razor regained conciseness. T-Bone put his jaw back into place as he got back to his feet.
“Damn, Tigera can pack a punch!” he said.
“I can’t believe she would do this to us, too. She would never turn on us,” Razor said as T-Bone helped him up. They noticed they were in a cage with electrical bars. Razor touched one of the bars and his paw got shocked. He drew his paw back and rubbed it.
“What are we going to do?”
“I say you’re going to fry in that cage,” Tigera said as she circled the cage.
“Why are you doing this?” T-Bone asked.
“You know, I’m getting really sick of hearing that question. It’s obvious. Dulcea has shown me the light to absolute darkness. My sisters were right when they said I should’ve become evil. Wish I had done it sooner.”
“The Tigera I know would never say a thing like that. I don’t know what happened to you and Dulcea, but I’m gonna set your minds straight.”
“Ha, ha. You’re wasting your time, T-Bone. There’s nothing you can do to change me back.”
“Psst, T-Bone. Since when does Tigera wear that collar?” Razor whispered into T-Bone’s ear.
“Hey, you’re right. That’s a nice collar you have, Tigera. Where’d you get it?” T-Bone asked.
“None of your business,” Tigera replied. T-Bone growled and reached out to Tigera’s neck. The electric bars started to shock him, but he still grabbed Tigera’s collar. Tigera started to get shocked when T-Bone had hold of the collar. He pulled on the collar and pulled it off. Then he was thrown back into the back of the cage. T-Bone panted as Razor helped him back up. Tigera panted and rubbed her neck.
“Thanks, T-Bone. I needed that.” She pushed a button on the control panel in front of the cage and the bars stopped glowing. She opened the cage door and T-Bone and Razor stepped out.
“I knew you wouldn’t turn on us, Tiger,” T-Bone said.
“Yeah. I tried to fight it, but it was too powerful for even me.”
“So, this is what turned you on us. But Dulcea wasn’t wearing one. Maybe she betrayed us on purpose,” Razor said, clenching the black collar in his paw.
“Oh, if she did, it was my fault. I never should’ve yelled at her,” T-Bone said.
“We gotta find her. She’s looking for the others right now.” Then they ran out. Meanwhile, on a roller coaster ride that ran through a miniature model of MegaKat City, Boulder, Shera, Kari, and Jeff were wondering around.
“I got a bad feeling about this,” Shera said.
“That makes two of us,” Kari said.
“Don’t you girls worry. You got us to protect you,” Jeff said, flexing his muscles.
“We can take care of ourselves, thank you very much, Jeffrey.”
“Hmm, let’s split up. And be careful,” Boulder said. They nodded and split up throughout the ride. Kari kept a close watch of where she was going as she walked. Then her new feline ears twitched.
“Huh?” She looked behind her and saw Dulcea with her sword raised over her head.
“Seems I got your ears,” Kari said.
“Aye, and I want them back.” Kari gasped as Dulcea brought her sword down. Kari got out of the way as the sword spilt a building in half.
“Dulcea, what’s wrong with you? You’d never do this to your own friends!”
“True, but who said we were still friends?”
“Boulder! Shera! Jeff!”
“Don’t count on them helping you out, Kari. Look.” Kari looked behind her to see Boulder, Shera, and Jeff each unconscious.
“Well, so much for back-up,” she said to herself, narrowing her eyes.
“No weapons, no friends, no hope. Take all that away and what do you have?”
“Your face is like a poem. I can read it.”
“I doesn’t say ‘Spare me’ by any chance, does it?”
“You’ve been a pest ever since you came here. Time to say good night!” Kari screamed and fell onto her back. She gasped and kicked the sword out of Dulcea’s paw. Dulcea was about to jump on her when she rolled over.
“Now, we can either do this the hard way, or the… Well, actually, there’s just the hard way,” Kari said, motioning her fingers to Dulcea.
“That’s fine with me,” Dulcea said, cracking her knuckles. Kari extended her new kat claws and growled.
“Now, are you sure? This isn’t going to be pretty. We’re talking violence, strong language, and possibly adult content. Oy, I’m starting to sound like Buffy, the Vampire Slayer and I don’t even watch the show. I just read the quotes off the net.”
“You’re no match for me, Kitten,” Dulcea said.
“But *we* are, Dulcea,” T-Bone said as he, Razor, and Tigera appeared.
“Tigera, you traitor! Oh, well. I was looking forward to kicking your tails again anyway,” Dulcea said.
“I’m ready for that rematch,” T-Bone said. Then they heard cackling. They looked up and saw Jettona and Caracal up on a track that was high above the model city.
“Who’s that she-kat with Jettona?” Razor asked.
“My sister Caracal,” Tigera replied.
“We don’t seem to share your sense of humor, ladies. Would you care to tell us what’s so funny?” T-Bone asked.
“We just think it’s amusing that by the time you finish your fight, it will be your last!” Caracal said.
“What do you mean?”
“In ten minutes, the explosives we set underneath the fair will blow up in the biggest explosion since the Black Widow!” Jettona said.
“Let’s get ’em!” They headed in the direction where the roller coaster track lead up to them when Dulcea jumped in front of them with a spear in her paws.
“Out of the way, Dulcea,” T-Bone said.
“Ever heard of the Three Wise Kats? You’re not one of them if you cross my path,” Dulcea said, raising the spear up to T-Bone’s chest.
“Well, at least we have one ally we can count on,” Jettona said, cackling. Then she and Caracal disappeared through the tunnel in front of them. The four Kats stood there in front of Dulcea with a spear in her paws. Their once greatest ally, now, it appears, their greatest enemy.
“Dulcea, listen to me. You don’t know what you’re doing,” T-Bone said as Dulcea kept her spear up near his chest.
“I’ve got a spear close to your heart. The fair is wired to explode. And the death of the Swat Kat leader is close at hand; *my* hand, that is. I know exactly what I’m doing,” Dulcea said. T-Bone took a step closer.
“I wouldn’t do that if I was you, T-Bone. Otherwise, the kat with the spear would cut your heart out.”
“And the kat with the foot could kick your tail!” T-Bone knocked the spear out of her paws. Dulcea extended her claws and tried to slash T-Bone’s face. He did a back flip to put a small bit of distance between them. Dulcea retrieved her spear as T-Bone took out his sword.
“I have a spear, I know how to use it,” she said.
“And I have a sword, don’t *make* me use it.”
“I know you, Brother. You wouldn’t hurt or kill anyone you cared for with your sword. You don’t have the stomach to kill me.”
“Who says I still care for you?” Dulcea roared and ran towards him. T-Bone struck the spear with his sword. They both growled at each other. Dulcea then pushed him down to the ground. He had his sword at his throat. The spear crossed with the sword as Dulcea pushed them towards him as he pushed back.
“Dulcea, stop!” Razor shouted, trying to pull Dulcea off of T-Bone. Dulcea growled and slapped him. He grunted and slammed into the side of one of the miniature buildings.
“Anyone else want to be the hero?” Dulcea asked.
“Quiver, I know you’re in there somewhere. Fight whatever it is that’s controlling you!” T-Bone grunted, pushing the spear and sword away from him.
“Stop wasting your breath, T-Bone. You’ll need it to scream.” Suddenly, she gasped. She found herself pulling the sword and spear *away* from T-Bone.
“No! I can’t do it! Ah! Of course, you can! He accused you of sleeping on the job! He *deserves* to be destroyed! Rewo! Even so, he’s *my* brother! Ah! You are *weak!* Rewo! You are a bitch!”
“That’s it. Fight it!” T-Bone said.
“T-Bone, I– Rewo! No! The plan is perfect! Ah! I can’t stop myself!” Then Tigera and Kari grabbed hold of Dulcea’s arms. She growled fiercely as she struggled to get free.
“T-Bone, she might be wearing one of those collars. Look for it!” Tigera said.
“And look quickly! She’s working hard to get loose!” Kari said while Dulcea struggled. T-Bone got back to his feet and separated Dulcea’s mask with her shirt. There, he found the collar on her neck.
“She *is* wearing one! Just keep still, Sis, and I’ll get it off.” Dulcea growled and got free of the girls’ grasp.
“Don’t you dare, T-Bone! Ah! T-Bone, I’m dangerous! I can’t keep this up forever! Rewo! You’re just lucky I have an appointment to keep!” Then she started running up the track. Then something grabbed onto her ankle. She looked down to see Razor, his forehead bleeding, baring his teeth and growling.
“You’re not getting away from us *that* easily!” he said.
“You’re starting to bug me!” Dulcea said, extending her claws. She was about to slash Razor’s face when her other arm pulled the other arm back.
“I’m not going to let you do it! Ah! What do you care about him? He’s nothing but another pretty face! Ah! Obviously, you know *nothing* about him! I *love* him!” Razor’s eyes widened.
“Ah! Love? Ha! Love is weak and so are you! Ah! Shows what you know! Ah! Kill him now! Ah! Never!” One of Dulcea’s arms motioned towards the collar while the other tried to pull it away.
“You can’t fight it! You *are* evil! Ah! No! I’m never going back!” She then slashed the collar off her neck.
“No!!” Then the emerald on the collar cracked. Dulcea fell on her paws and knees and panted. Razor cautiously stepped up to her. She looked up at him.
“I didn’t hurt you, did I?” Dulcea asked. Razor smiled and helped her back up.
“Oh, Jake,” she said, hugging Razor.
“Are you all right?” T-Bone asked. She stopped hugging Razor and looked at T-Bone.
“I’m not talking to you. It was your fault that I got into this mess,” Dulcea said.
“As much as we would love to have you guys get into another argument, we have to find Jettona and Caracal before the fair explodes,” Boulder said as he, Shera, and Jeff appeared.
“He’s right. Think you can control that temper long enough to take care of the Doom Sisters, Dulcea?” T-Bone asked. Dulcea hissed and brushed her tail in T-Bone’s face.
“Let’s get going, O Fearless Leader.” T-Bone shook his head and sighed as he and the others followed in the direction Jettona and Caracal went.
“I don’t know how much longer I can stand watching them fight,” Boulder said.
“That makes at least three of us,” Shera said. When they reached the end of the tunnel, it began snowing by the time they found they were at the beginning of the roller coaster ride.
“They could be long gone by now,” Kari said. Tigera checked her watch.
“Damn! Three more minutes left until this place goes up,” she said.
“Speaking of going up…” Shera said, pointing towards a figure in a jetpack. Jettona waved to them and started going up with the jetpack. Caracal was next to her, also going up with a jetpack.
“There’s no way we could get them in time!” Jeff said.
“You guys may be ready to give up, but *I’m* not! I’m taking those bitches out!” T-Bone said, running towards them.
“T-Bone, wait! We don’t have time!” Kari shouted.
“Well, if he’s getting in on the action, I’m gonna get in on some!” Dulcea said, pushing a button on her belt. Suddenly, she changed from her ninja outfit to her Swat Kat G-suit. Then she went running after T-Bone.
“Look who’s coming, Caracal,” Jettona said.
“Looks like T-Bone and Quiver. Which one do you want?” Caracal asked.
“I don’t think it’s really our choice.” T-Bone looked at his side and saw Quiver.
“Quiver, what do you think you’re doing?”
“Just shut up and get after them, T-Bone! We’re going to lose them!”
“Fine!” They both climbed up the roller coaster tracks and met with Jettona and Caracal.
“Hey, Jettona! Got room for one more?” T-Bone asked, jumping onto Jettona’s jetpack. Quiver whistled as Caracal came close to her.
“Permission to come aboard, Cap’n!” she said, jumping onto her jetpack. Both jetpacks were flying out of control.
“You’re crazy! We’re your only chance to get out of here! Let go, or your whole team dies!” Jettona said, trying to push T-Bone off. T-Bone threw a punch and Jettona’s jetpack continued to fly out of control. On Caracal’s jetpack, Quiver was trying to pull the jetpack downward.
“You’re starting to get on my nerves!” Caracal growled.
“Aye? Well, I guess Gilmore’s rubbing off on me,” Quiver said. Suddenly, a blast of fire knocked both jetpacks out of the sky. They each crashed hard on the ground.
“T-Bone!” Tigera said.
“Quiver!” Razor said.
“Damn! The explosions have begun! We gotta get out of here!” Kari said. Boulder and Shera ran over to T-Bone and Quiver. They threw them over their shoulders and started running back to the group.
“We’ll never get out of here in time!” Jeff said.
“We’ve only got one chance!” Kari said, typing on her miniature keyboard. Then she pressed “Enter.” Suddenly, the ground beneath their feet started to crack. They collapsed and landed in the underground river. The water carried them away as the explosions spread. Finally, their heads shot above the water. Each of them coughed and gasped for air. Then they crawled to shore.
“I wish you had found a simpler way to get us out of a situation like that, Kari,” Tigera said.
“Kari? I thought your name was Ragdoll,” Jeff said.
“Jeff, I can’t lie to you anymore. My real name’s Kari Gilmore. I’m not even a kat. I’m a human,” Kari said.
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
“Oh, come on! Why would a kat be interested in a human? I only became a kat to blend in with the crowd. They would think I’m a freak. Even the Swat Kats didn’t like humans at first.”
“I don’t care *what* you are. It’s *who* you are that counts.” Kari gave him a small smile.
“I’m sorry I lied.” Then T-Bone and Quiver regained conciseness and got to their feet.
“Oh, are we dead?” Quiver asked.
“Nope. We’re alive,” Razor said.
“No thanks to Quiver,” T-Bone said.
“Hey, it was your fault I got myself into that mess! Why don’t you just stay out of my life?”
“Why don’t you just stay out of my team?”
“And I thought I could have a quiet Christmas Eve this year,” Shera said, sighing.
“And where do you get off telling me what to do?” Quiver asked.
“It’s part of the job as leader!” T-Bone replied.
“Oh, and who voted you to be king of the universe? You just voted yourself to be leader!”
“Oh, there he goes, telling me what to do again! I should’ve killed you when I had the chance!”
“Well, excuse me for still breathing!” T-Bone said. Boulder clenched his fists and his teeth.
“Both of you, quiet!” he shouted. T-Bone and Quiver both stopped arguing and stared at him. The rest of the group had their eyes wide open. Boulder was one who hardly ever got into a fight, but he was willing to make an exception with T-Bone and Quiver.
“You two should be happy you have each other to fight with. All of my brothers are dead, and you of all people should know that nothing’s more important than family.”
Quiver sighed, “He’s right. T-Bone, I’m sorry. I– I just don’t understand why you didn’t believe when I said that robot knocked me down. I’d never sleep on the job.”
“You know, she *was* knocked down, T-Bone,” Jeff said.
“Well, finally! Somebody who believes me.”
“Well, I guess I could’ve taken the time to believe you. I’m sorry this whole thing got started, Quiv,” T-Bone said.
“I’m sorry, too. I wanna rejoin if it’s OK, T-Bone.” T-Bone and Quiver clasped paws and smiled. Kari and Jeff looked at the burning fair in the distance.
“You can be sure those two will be back,” Kari said.
“I wouldn’t doubt it. Well, let’s go back to the party.”
Later at the party, Kari and Jeff were back on the dance floor, Chance and Tigera were eating, Buster and Ann were talking with Callie, and Jake and Kat were over on the other side of the room. Kat was cleaning Jake’s face and bleeding forehead and held a clean clothe against it.
“So, when you said you loved me, was it true?” Jake asked.
“Aye. I’ve been meaning to say it for a long time. I just never found the courage to say it, until tonight,” Kat said.
“But I feel embarrassed that you don’t feel the same way about me.”
“Whoever said that is a liar. I love you, too.”
“Aye?” Jake nodded. Then he heard City Hall’s bells strike 12:00.
“Well, I guess since it’s Christmas, I can give you this,” Jake said, getting down on one knee and handing Kat a small present. Kat unwrapped it and opened it up. She gasped to find a diamond ring inside.
“Jake, it’s gorgeous.” Jake took her paw into his.
“Katarina, I don’t have the words to tell you how happy you would make me if you excepted this in exchange to be my wife. Will you marry me?”
“Jake, I– I will.” Jake smiled and put the ring on her finger.
“Merry Christmas, Kat.”
“Merry Christmas, Jake.” Then they kissed. After the next song, Kari and Jeff strolled off the dance floor and went outside in the garden.
“I hope you had fun tonight,” Kari said.
“Dancing was great. The fight, well… I don’t want to do it was a daily thing,” Jeff replied.
“Well, I didn’t ask you to come along, Jeff. But, I’m glad you did. So, you’re not upset that I’m really human?”
“It’s the personality that makes the person. And you’ve got a great one.” Kari giggled and blushed. The Buster and Ann came out with Callie.
“Well, there’s MegaKat City’s newest couple,” Callie said.
“Deputy Mayor, we’re just friends,” Jeff said.
Buster looked above their heads and said, “Yeah, friends standing under the mistletoe.” Kari and Jeff both looked up.
“Well, this as unexpected,” Kari said.
“Ditto,” Jeff said.
“Go ahead, guys. It’s tradition,” Ann said.
“They’re staring at us.”
“I guess we don’t have much choice, then.” Kari and Jeff closed their eyes and kissed briefly. Then they looked at each other and kissed again.
“Isn’t that cute? It’s her first kiss,” Tigera said as she and Chance watched from the window.
“Yeah. You know, I was wrong about a lot of things tonight, Tigera. I was wrong about Kat screwing up, I was wrong about you and her turning on us, I was wrong to accuse her, and I was wrong to think that those two wouldn’t become a couple even though he knows Kari’s a human.”
“We all make mistakes, Chance. And the best thing we can do for each other is to take time to listen. So, what should we do now?”
“I’d say we go find the others and go home.” Without warning, Tigera kissed Chance.
“What was that for?” Chance asked.
“It was your Christmas present. Merry Christmas, Chance,” Tigera said.
“Merry Christmas, Tigera.”
And all I can add to that is: Merry Christmas! And God bless us, everyone!
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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.