Original SWAT Kats Story

Losing Hope

By Kari Gilmore

  • 2 Chapters
  • 12,293 Words

A “Hercules” and “Xena: Warrior Princess” crossover. Buster’s been poisoned and only a flower from ancient Greece can save him.

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Chapter 2

Chapter 1:

Quiver returned later that evening. She walked passed the others and into the tent. The first thing that came to her eye was Razor’s body covered by the blanket. She sobbed and turned her head. She walked over to the body and removed part of the blanket that covered his face.

“Damn whoever did this to you, Razor. I never got to tell you that I loved you,” she said, taking off his helmet and kissing his forehead. Then she returned the blanket over his face. Then she stepped out of the tent to be greeted by T-Bone.

“Hey, T-Bone. How are you feeling?” she asked.

T-Bone wiped his eyes and replied, “Terrible. I lost the best friend I ever had.”

“Now you know how I felt when Jettona killed *my* best friend.” Quiver started to walk away when T-Bone started walking next to her.

“But you said Jettona didn’t get her sweet revenge when she killed her.”

“I lied. I wanted to kill myself, Chance. It took Tsidii weeks to convince me not to. And now Razor’s–” She covered her eyes with her paw. T-Bone wrapped his arms around her as she continued to cry.

“I know you loved him as much as I did, Sis.”

“Now Skylar will never know she had a father…” T-Bone nodded.

“… Or a mother.” T-Bone’s eyes widened. He reduced the hug to his paws on Quiver’s shoulders.

“Run that by me again? You’re gonna *kill* yourself?”

“T-Bone, just let me be. You’ve lived your life without me this long. You can live the rest of it without me.” She started to walk away again when T-Bone stepped in front of her.

“I won’t allow this, Katarina Lynn.”

“How are you going to stop me? Are you going to kill me? Huh?”

“If I have to, I will.” Quiver took a step back and opened her arms.

“Do it, then. I *dare* ya.” Damn it, I *hate* it when she does this!

“You know I can’t do anything if you dare me.”

“Exactly. Let me do it myself. You can’t stop me, T-Bone. Don’t even try.” Quiver kept her eyes on T-Bone as she walked pass him.

T-Bone starred into space and called back to her, “There’s nothing I can say to make you change your mind?”

“No. Good-bye, my brother. I love you, T-Bone.” A tear rolled down her cheek as she walked into the forest. T-Bone turned around just in time to find her gone.

“I love you, too, Sis.” Quiver stopped in front of a giant oak tree that was near the cliff she was on earlier. She took out her sword and drove it into the ground. She put Razor’s helmet on it. I know you can hear me, Razor. I’ll be joining you soon, she thought to herself. She walked onto the cliff. She took a deep breathe and closed her eyes. She started to edge off the cliff when she heard a noise.

“Is this really how you want to die, Quiver?” a voice behind her asked. She reopened her eyes and spun around to find Aphrodite.

“I mean, nobody wants to die all bloody and ripped skin and stuff,” Aphrodite said.

“Ach, you are *such* an airhead. You allowed your brother to let Razor die all bloody and his stomach ripped open,” Quiver said.

“Ugh, I know! I’d get sick if I wasn’t a God. Actually, it wasn’t Ares who killed him.”

“You’re a terrible liar, Aphrodite. I know Ares is the type who’d kill. And he said he’d find a way to get us into helping you. You’re lucky I don’t have any hind’s blood or I’d kill you faster than you can blink.”

“I’m telling you the truth! I’m the Goddess of Love. I don’t lie. I know you loved Razor, so I’ll make a deal with you. If you help us defeat the Titans, I’ll give you ambrosia to return his spirit to his body.”

“And what about his stomach?”

“The ambrosia will heal it. C’mon, we really need some help.” Quiver stood there, weighing the pros and cons. Meanwhile, everyone was sitting around the fire.

“I just can’t believe he’s gone,” Shera said.

“My best friend, dead. If it wasn’t for him, we’d never would’ve even *started* the Swat Kats,” T-Bone said.

“And MegaKat City would be taken over by some nutcase. Not to mention, we may never have met,” Venus said.

“And now we’ve lost Quiver, too. She probably killed herself by now.”

“Razor will be missed, I’m sure,” Hercules said.

“If there’s anything we can do to help, just ask,” Xena said.

“The only way you can help is by helping me go to Mt. Olympus and defeat the Titans,” Quiver said, stepping out of the forest. The Swat Kats had shocked looks on their faces.

“Quiver, you didn’t kill yourself,” T-Bone said.

“If she’s planning to help the Gods, she should’ve. It was the Gods that killed Razor and you want to *help* them?” Xena asked.

“Believe me, if Aphrodite didn’t offer me ambrosia, I wouldn’t help. But since she did, I’m going to help,” Quiver said.

“You’re already a sorceress. You don’t need to be a god.”

“I don’t want the ambrosia for myself. I need it to bring Razor back. Whether you’re helping me or not, I’m going.” T-Bone looked at both Shera and Venus. He got up and walked up to Quiver.

“I already lost my best friend, I’m not losing my little sister, too. I’m going with her,” he said. Venus and Shera both got up at the same time.

“If Stripes is going to get himself killed, I’m going with him,” Venus said, joining T-Bone and Quiver. Shera joined them.

“What the hell? I only got nine lives to lose,” she said. They stared at the rest of the group.

“We’re not planning to help,” Hercules said.

“If you want to go off and get yourselves killed, that’s up to you,” Xena said. Gabrielle and Joxer glared at each other and joined the Swat Kats.

“*You* may not want to help, but *we* do. Sorry, Xena, but we’re going with them,” Gabrielle said.

“Heroes should stick together,” Joxer said.

“I figured you’d do the same, Cousin. The Greek Gods are cruel most of the time, but they’re a hell of a lot nicer than the rest of my family,” Venus said to Hercules.

“And what happened to the Xena I used to know?” Quiver asked.

“That Xena is dead,” Xena replied.

“Dead inside, you mean. Your friends would rather help us that stay with you. Let’s go before the Titans reach Mt. Olympus.” Then they disappeared into the forest. Hercules and Xena starred at each other and kept silent in thought.

Chapter 2:

Meanwhile on Mt. Olympus, the Gods were preparing for battle. They each had their weapons of choice. Zeus looked over at each god and nodded. Then he saw Aphrodite meditating in a giant shell resting in the fountain.

“Aphrodite, might I ask what you’re doing?” Zeus asked.

“I’m sending out a calming aura to neutralize the bad Titan vibes. And if that doesn’t work, I plan to hide in my shell,” Aphrodite replied. Zeus sighed and shook his head.

“He-yah!” a voice yelled. Zeus spun around to see a she-kat kicking Ares to the ground.

“Blasted god! If you were mortal, I’d tear your damn heart out! I swear, I would!” Quiver growled, putting her foot on Ares’ neck.

“Ares, is there some reason for this mortal being here?” Zeus asked.

“He killed my boyfriend because we wouldn’t help you gods fight those damn Titans,” Quiver replied.

“I didn’t kill anybody,” Ares said.

“Do you know what I did with the last person who lied to me? I left him alone to fight the big monster that was climbing up the mountain.”

“We’re willing to help you if you give us some ambrosia to bring our friend back. That’s all we’re asking, Zeus,” T-Bone said as he and the others stepped forward. Zeus nodded.

“Very well. I’ll give you the ambrosia if your friend will get her foot off my son’s neck.” Quiver sighed and lifted her foot off of Ares’ neck. He coughed and got back to his feet.

“So, where are the dirty bastards?” Venus asked, taking out her bow and arrows.

“They’ve yet to show up. Mark my words, they’ll be here.” Everyone took out their weapons and waited. As the wind gently whistled, the gods began to think that the Titans had yet to come near Mt. Olympus.

“I don’t like this. It’s too quiet,” Shera said.

“I’m getting bad vibes, myself,” Venus said.

“Then ask Aphrodite to neutralize them,” T-Bone said.

“Was that suppose to be funny? If it was, our future is doomed,” Gabrielle said. T-Bone rolled his eyes and sighed. Quiver quietly growled as her ears twitched.

“Uh-oh. I know *that* noise,” T-Bone said.

“What it is?” Joxer asked.

“I don’t know. She’s the only one who’s hearing it.” Quiver looked up and her ears went flat against her head.

“Well, well, look what crawled out of hiding,” she hissed. Jettona, Callisto, and Hera, Queen of the Gods, each held up a large green stone.

“Look what we’ve got, Swat Kats!” Jettona laughed. All the Gods looked up to se them.

“They have the Chronis Stone!”

“Gods, attack!” The Gods started charging towards the three of them while the Swat Kats and Gabrielle and Joxer stayed in place.

“Wait! They’re just distracting you until the Titans show up!” Gabrielle shouted above the crowd. Then the ground started to shake.

“Speaking of which–!” Shera shouted. Then a tidal wave knocked over almost all of the Gods, including the Swat Kats and Gabrielle and Joxer. As soon as the water came in her direction, Aphrodite closed the top of her shell and sealed herself inside.

T-Bone coughed and asked, “Who turned on the hose?” Quiver coughed as she wrung out her hair.

“I *hate* surprise showers,” she said.

“Well, don’t look now, but here comes the blow-dry!” Venus said. Then a giant gush of wind blew and knocked the group onto the side of the castle.

“We could really use Hercules and Xena right about now!” Joxer said.

“Razor wouldn’t be too bad either!” T-Bone said. Meanwhile, Hercules and Xena were sitting by the fire and roasting marshmallows.

“So, what do you think?” Hercules asked.

“About what?” Xena asked.

“About the Gods. Do you really think they’ll give them the ambrosia to bring Razor back?”

“I doubt it. You know the Gods. They go back on their words at times.”

“True. But often they *do* help.”

“Still, I don’t like the idea of Gabrielle and Joxer going off to help them. They could get hurt, or killed.” Hercules pulled his marshmallow out of the fire and squeezed it. Then he took it off the stick and put it in his mouth.

“You’re right about that. Should we help?” Xena took her marshmallow out of the fire and put it in her mouth. Then she swallowed.

“After what Venus and Quiver said to us? You know their words make sense. You owe Zeus for his protection from the other Gods. And Quiver was right when she said I was dead inside. I guess I just didn’t want to face Callsito. I keep thinking of Solan whenever I see her.”

“Are we in an agreement, then?” Xena nodded. Hercules got up and headed for the tent. He gathered a few things until something fell on him.

“What the hell–?” he asked.

“Hi, Herc. Thanks for catching me.” Hercules looked on his back to see Razor!

“Razor, aren’t you suppose to be dead?” Razor got off his back and dusted himself off.

“Well, I’m sort of dead at the moment. I talked Hades into letting me go back to the living world to help the guys fight the Titans. He was busy anyway because he needed to go fight with the gods,” he said.

“Sounds good. Xena and I were just about to go there ourselves.”

“Great. Anything I need to know?” Hercules got back to his feet and dusted himself off.

“Hmm, let’s see. In order for you to grab something, you need to concentrate and then grab the object. You’re only visible to people with immortal blood in their veins. You only appear visible to mortal blood when you become really emotional.” Razor nodded and walked over to his backpack. He closed his eyes and concentrated. Then he grabbed the bag’s straps. Then Xena came into the tent to receive a shock.

“Razor! How–? Why–?” she tried to say.

“I thought you said only immortal blood can see me,” Razor said to Hercules.

“I don’t know why, but Xena can see Gods and ghosts when they’re invisible,” Hercules replied.

“Listen, Xena, the Gods are in trouble. And so are the guys. We gotta go after them.” Then Razor ran out of the tent and to Xena’s horse. He jumped on as Hercules carried out his body in his arms with Xena by his side.

“You coming or do I leave without you?” Razor asked. Hercules and Xena jumped on the horse behind Razor.

“OK, Argo,” Xena said, putting her fingers in her mouth and whistling. Argo neighed, then began galloping.

Chapter 3:

Meanwhile on Mt. Olympus, Jettona, Callisto, and Hera had used the Chronis Stone to Turn the Gods into farmyard animals. Only the Swat Kats and Gabrielle and Joxer were left. The Titans were closing in on them. There was a water Titan, fire Titan, an earth Titan, and a wind Titan.

“This is *not* good,” Joxer said.

“What was your first clue?” T-Bone asked.

“Well, Callisto and Jettona teaming up with Hera for one thing–”

“Shut up, Joxer,” Gabrielle said.

“Finish them!” Hera shouted.

“Crush them like ants!” Callisto said. The Titans looked at each other. Porphyrion used a vine from out of his skin. He grabbed the Chronis Stone from their grasps.

“What are you doing?” Jettona asked. Then the three of the began to shrink. They, too, turned into animals. Each turned into a rat. The Titans laughed as the Kats were getting their weapons ready.

“Let’s kick some tail! Fireballs, ignite!” T-Bone shouted. Nothing happened.

“What’s the matter with this thing? Fireballs, ignite!” Again, nothing happened.

“It’s the Chronis Stone. They’re using it so we can’t use the fire power,” Venus said.

“And if the fire power doesn’t work, that makes us sitting ducks,” Quiver said.

“We have the stone now, mortals. You’ve chosen the wrong day on which to fight,” Porphyrion laughed.

“It’s not over till it’s over, big boy,” Quiver said.

“Which in this case, it is,” Joxer said.

“Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi!” a voice yelled.

“It’s Xena!” Gabrielle said. A round weapon scraped the side of a wall and bounced off another. Then it knocked the Chronis Stone out of the vine’s grasp. It landed at the Kats’ feet.

“What the hell was that?” T-Bone asked.

“Xena’s chakram,” Quiver replied. Then Hercules and Xena came flying through the air. Kicking Porphyrion and the Titan Crius to the ground. Then the two landed next to the group. Xena caught the chakram as it passed by.

“Well, now I see where Quiver picked up that trick. Glad you could make it, guys. Now let’s kick some Titan tail!” T-Bone said. Quiver took out her stars and threw them at Tethys, the water Titan.

“Ice shields, blast!” When the stars circled Tethys, they turned her water into ice. Quiver caught the stars as they returned to her.

“Cold enough for ya?” Suddenly, Tethys escaped from the ice prison and the ice knocked Quiver into the side of a wall.

“Oh, yeah. That’s cold enough,” she said, shivering. As Tethys came towards her, Quiver extended her claws and slashed them across her leg. The claws went straight through her leg.

“Ah, just as well since you’re made out of water.” Then Tethys picked her up and started squeezing her. She imprisoned her in a layer of water.

“T-Bone!” she gasped. T-Bone looked up to see her losing oxygen.

“I’m comin’, kiddo!” he said, charging at Tethys.

“Put her down!” Tethys raised her other arm and a tidal wave crashed over T-Bone, carrying him over to Hercules and Joxer.

“This could go on forever. We need one of Razor’s crazy ideas,” T-Bone said.

“First, I suggest you save your sister,” Hercules said.

“Supreme thunder crash!” a voice shouted. Then, a thunderbolt struck Tethys, causing her to lose her grip on Quiver. Quiver fell to the ground, soaking wet and gasping for air.

“Thanks, whoever did that,” she said, panting.

“Yeah, who *did* do that?” Gabrielle asked. Shera and Venus were fighting the fire Titan, Mnemosyne. Mnemosyne inhaled and exhaled a blast of fire at their feet.

“Hot foot! Hot foot!” Shera said.

“Hyah!” a voice shouted. Then Mnemosyne was knocked over.

“Who keeps doing that?” Shera asked. Venus’s eyes widened as she saw Razor throwing a punch at Mnemosyne while Shera saw nothing but Mnemosyne falling backwards.

“It’s Razor!” Venus said.

“What are you talking about? There’s no one there but Mnemosyne,” Shera said.

“Then it must be Razor’s spirit. Only immortal blood can see him.” Porphyrion growled and walked over to Razor’s body all wrapped up in blankets. He picked up the body and lightly squeezed it. Razor stopped and gasped.

“Hercules, what’s happening?” he asked. Hercules looked over at Razor who was falling to his knees, obviously in pain. Then he looked over at Porphyrion as he squeezed Razor’s body in his monster hands.

“I guess I forgot to tell you that if somebody got a hold of your body, you feel its pain,” Hercules said.

“That would’ve helped!” Razor shouted. Porphyrion laughed as he threw the body to the ground. Razor screamed as the body hit the ground.

“One spirit can’t take so much pain, Hercules,” Xena said.

“I know. We need to take out the Titans. But how?” Hercules asked. Razor’s spirit laid down on the ground, terribly injured from the extreme pain and damage done to his body. His body was beaten, bruised, and bloody.

“Please, get Jettona to kill me again now,” he whispered.

“Uh, it’s a little late for that, Razor. Wait a minute. *Jettona* killed you?” Venus asked.

“Who did you think killed me?”

“We’ll handle Jettona later. At the present moment, we could really use a plan!” Quiver shouted as she, T-Bone, Gabrielle, and Joxer were trying to keep their ground while Crius made a windstorm. Razor looked around, though he knew it would be useless since his eyes were out of focus. But then his eyes caught sight of something. His eyes focused and he saw the Chronis Stone.

“That gives me a plan that’s just crazy enough to work. Hercules, Xena, Venus! I got a plan!”

“We’re ready to hear it, Razor!” Xena said as she took out her sword and swung it at Porphyrion’s leg. She sliced below the knee only for the leg to grow back.

“Get to the Chronis Stone! Break it in half then throw the Titans over the side!”

“It’s crazy…” Xena said.

“But it just might work,” Venus replied.

“Keep them busy, then!” Hercules said to everybody.

“We pretty much have that under control, Hercules!” Shera said as Tethys splashed her with water. Hercules rushed over to the Chronis Stone and started to pull it apart. With all his strength, he pulled the stone into two pieces. Down below, a large crack opened in the earth. Venus looked down to see it.

“Perfect. Now if we can just get the big jerks to fall in, we can win this.”

“And that’ll be a piece of cake!” Quiver shouted as Crius blew her into Xena.

“Heh, sorry, Xena.” T-Bone and Shera ran together as Crius came running after them.

“I’ll crush your skulls like eggs!” Crius said.

“Would you settle for a rain check?” T-Bone asked. He took out his sword and Shera blew on it. Fire shoot out of the sword and onto Crius’s feet. He jumped into the air and blew on them. As he hopped and blew, he ended up hopping right off the edge of the cliff and right into the crack in the earth.

“Me-yow! We sure gave him a hot foot!” Shera said, giving T-Bone a high-five. Gabrielle and Joxer stood between Mnemosyne and Tethys who were running towards them in both directions. They looked both ways and jumped out of their way as they were almost upon them. Both Titans crashed into each other. Mnemosyne started to evaporate from Tethys’s water body and Tethys was starting to evaporate from Mnemosyne’s fire. Xena and Quiver jumped into the air and kicked both Titans over the edge and into the crack in the earth.

“You know, it’s amazing how often that trick works,” Joxer said.

“Yeah. The oldest trick in the book,” Gabrielle replied.

“What book?”

“Battle on, Xena!” Quiver said, giving Xena a high-five.

“Thanks. Don’t mind if I do.” Then the group heard Porphyrion growling.

“Still got this one to take care of,” Hercules said.

“Who wants him?” Shera asked.

“He’s mine,” Venus said, taking out her arrows. Porphyrion used a vine to grab the quiver filled with arrows away from her paws.

“OK, I won’t take him out with my arrows. Any other suggestions?”

“He just draws his power from the earth. He’s just as strong even when he’s down,” Quiver said.

“Then we’ll just have to put him into flight. South winds, blow!” Shera shouted, twirling her daggers through her fingers. Suddenly, a strong wind picked up Porphyrion and dropped him into the crack in the earth.

“Close the hole up! Quick!” Gabrielle said. Hercules rushed back over to the Chronis Stone, and pushed it back into one piece. When that was done, all of the Gods returned to normal. Hera, Callisto, and Jettona returned to normal, too, except they were still the size of rats.

“Ugh! This is the *last* time I’m teaming up with *you*, Hera!” Callisto growled.

“Oh, shut up, you little brat,” Hera sighed. Then Quiver walked over to the three. She picked up Jettona in her paws.

“I should’ve known you’d kill Razor,” she said.

“I’ve been aiming to kill the little orphan for years. And now that he’s dead, I’m happy,” Jettona said, folding her arms across her chest.

“Don’t be too sure of that, Jettona. After all, *I’m* still alive, aren’t I?” Jettona growled and her body started to burn Quiver’s paws.

“Rewo!” she said, releasing Jettona. Jettona crashed to the ground, next to Callisto.

“I don’t know about you, Callisto, but I’m outta here,” she said, disappearing into thin air.

“Sounds good. Until next, Xena dear.” Then Callisto disappeared. All the Gods gathered together as the Chronis Stone glowed. The Swat Kats and their friends stood together away from them.

“Well, I hope they’re satisfied,” Shera said, putting her paws on her hips. Then they heard a scream. They turned around to see Razor’s spirit fading away.

“Razor!” T-Bone shouted. They rushed over to Razor as he continued to fade in and out.

“T-Bone, help,” Razor whispered. Then Aphrodite came over with a plate full of a gelatin-like food.

“Here. Give his body some of this,” she said. T-Bone took a bit of the ambrosia and walked over to Razor’s body. He put the ambrosia in his mouth and waited. Then Razor’s spirit faded out completely. Suddenly, they stomach wound on Razor’s body healed, but none of his other wounds did. T-Bone cradled Razor in his arms, waiting for him to wake up.

“C’mon, buddy. Don’t do this to me. C’mon, Jake. Damn it, wake up!” Razor didn’t respond. His body remained limp in T-Bone’s arms. T-Bone sobbed and rested his head on Razor’s forehead.

“Oh, no. C’mon, Razor. Don’t leave me like this. Razor…” Tears came rolling down his cheeks and landed on the bridge of Razor’s nose and his face. The other Swat Kats and their friends turned away.

“We’re too late,” Quiver whispered. Aphrodite herself felt like crying. It was just so sad.

“Hey, don’t tell me you’ve lost hope on me?” a voice in T-Bone’s arms asked. T-Bone’s face was tear-stained and his eyes were red when he reopened them. He gasped and looked at the body in his arms. Razor’s eyes were open and he weakly smiled.

“You’ve never lost hope before,” he said.

“Razor!” T-Bone said overjoyed, giving Razor a big hug.

“Ow! Not so hard, buddy,” Razor said. T-Bone smiled and loosened his hug.

“Sorry, Razor.”

“Razor, don’t you ever die on us again,” Quiver said as T-Bone released Razor from the hug. Quiver then kissed Razor.

“I’ll concentrate on that, Quiver. But maybe we should get going and find those Grecian Lilacs.”

“The lilacs! In all the excitement, I completely forgot about Buster!” Shera gasped.

“How are we ever going to reach Athens in time?” Venus asked.

“Grecian Lilacs? Is that all? Here, help yourselves,” Zeus said as a banquet of flowers appeared in his paws. Quiver took the banquet. She nodded in thanks. The Swat Kats then looked over at Hercules and Xena.

“Thanks for your help, guys. We never would’ve gotten Razor back without you,” T-Bone said, picking Razor up in his arms.

“Hey, what about *me*? I gave you the ambrosia,” Aphrodite said.

“Oh, right. Thanks, Aphrodite. It’s been an interesting Halloween. Let’s go home,” Shera said. The Swat Kats gathered together and waved good-bye to their friends as they disappeared. Gabrielle stood next to Xena and leaned on her staff.

“Wouldn’t what happened make a great story?” she asked.

“Sure. You get right on that, Gabrielle. So, where are you heading for from here, Hercules?” Xena asked.

“Oh, I was just going to my mother’s and pay her and Jason a surprise visit. You still want to come along?” Hercules asked.

“Sure. But let’s not find any dead bodies and stop to burn them. Or else we’ll never get there.” Hercules chuckled and they and Gabrielle and Joxer started climbing down Mt. Olympus.

Chapter 4:

Two doctors stood by Buster’s bed as they were preparing to grab the cord.

“This is the part of the job I hate,” one doctor said.

“You don’t want him to suffer, do you? Pulling the cord will give him a short death,” the other doctor said. The first doctor grasped the cord and was about to pull.

“Stop!” a voice shouted. The doctor released the cord and looked at the doorway. He saw Ann and two Swat Kats standing together.

“We got the lilacs,” Ann said, holding up the banquet of Grecian Lilacs.

“This is incredible! How were you ever able to get these?” the first doctor asked, taking the flowers from Ann.

“Ms. Gora told us the story, so we decided to help her out,” T-Bone said.

“Yeah. Besides, nobody can catch Ann Gora’s good side like Buster Whitetail,” Quiver said. Then the doctors rushed to the labs. When they left, Ann walked over to Buster’s bed.

“Will you be all right, Ann?” T-Bone asked.

“Yeah. Yeah. I’ll meet with you guys later. I just want to sty here until I’m sure things are stable.” T-Bone nodded and the two Swat Kats started walking out the door.

“And, guys? Thanks.” T-Bone and Quiver turned around and smiled. Then they left. Later that night, Ann fell asleep in a chair by Buster’s bed. Then someone gently shook her to wake her.

“Hmm? What? Ahh. Katarina? What time is it?” Ann asked, rubbing her eyes and yawing.

“3:37 a.m. You’ve been here all night?” Katarina asked.

“All night? Yeah, I guess so. Anything on how Buster’s doing?”

“I just got here. Tigera and the boys are in the labs right now. They’re running a blood sample through the computers right now to see if those lilacs worked any.” Ann looked sleepily at Buster. She grabbed his paw and lightly squeezed it. Then she fell asleep like that.

“Hmm. Poor Annie. You love him as much as I do,” Kat said, stroking Ann’s hair. She sighed and walked out of the room. As Ann slept by the bed holding Buster’s paw, Buster lightly squeezed her paw. She opened her eyes slowly and looked at Buster. She saw his eyes, too, were open. Ann was wide-awake now and she jumped to her feet.

“Buster! You’re awake!”

“Yeah, I guess you could call it that. Told ya I could handle any soup,” Buster said. Ann sat back down in the chair next to Buster’s bed.

“Buster, we found out that Jettona poisoned that soup. I don’t have the slightest idea why she’d do that. I’m so sorry.”

“Don’t be. It’s nothing new.”

“What the hell are you talking about?”

Buster shrugged, “I used to be a part-time royal food tester for Katarina back in the Dark Ages. I got poisoned plenty of times. It was mostly the same kind of poison that needed the Grecian Lilacs to cure. So Katarina would go back to Ancient Greece and collect some. But then she ran into this warrior woman–”

“Xena? We met her. She trained with her every time you needed those flowers, right?” Buster nodded. Ann starred at the floor to avoid eye contact.

“Annie? What’s up?” Buster asked. When Ann returned her eyes on him, she started crying.

“I didn’t have hope that you would make it this time, Buster. I wanted to, but there were so many troubles going on and… Oh, Buster!” She got out of her chair and hugged Buster.

“It’s OK, Annie. I’m here. I’ll always be here.” While in his arms, Ann felt safe, warm, wanted. She felt something new growing inside her. She wanted to speak, but she ignored it. Buster felt the same way. He wanted to tell her his feelings, but he was afraid to tell her.

“It’s a Kodak moment,” Chance said as he and the others stood in the doorway. Ann stopped hugging Buster and wiped her eyes.

“So, I guess we don’t have to tell you that he’s going to be all right,” Tigera said.

“Not anymore. Let’s go home,” Ann said. She turned to Buster and kissed his cheek. Jake stayed behind while the others left.

“I think she likes you, Buster,” he said, almost teasing.

“You kidding? I’m just her camera-kat.”

He looked at Jake’s bruises and cuts and said, “And what the hell happened to you?”

“Well, I kinda got killed. Has Katarina ever kept some dark secrets from you that you wish she had told you sooner?” Buster nodded.

“I was afraid of that. I didn’t find out what, but I’m gonna find out what she’s hiding from me.”

“Good luck. Those who find out her darkest secrets usually end up dead,” Buster said.

“She won’t kill me. Not if she wants our daughter to have a father. See you later, Bust.” Then Jake stepped out of the room and closed the door behind him. He found the guys signing out in the lobby. Katarina smiled while he gave her a cold look in his eyes. Her smile quickly faded. They walked out of the hospital and kept in silence the rest of the night.

THE END

Well, how was that for Hercules and Xena? And what dark secret is Kat keeping from Jake? That will soon be revealed. I admit, it wasn’t the best Halloween story I could come up with in such a short time, but at least it had some scary Titans. Until next time, Kat fans. I hope you had a spooky Halloween.

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