I’m back! OK, in this story, the Swat Kats discover a secret that T-Bone has been keeping for ten years. T-Bone doesn’t understand the secret so well so they go to the source of where the secret came from: Zanzibar, Africa. And… Quiver uncovers a secret of her own to Razor, concerning why she is acting like such a grouch to him. Also… the truth of about T-Bone and Quiver’s parents. Enjoy the story!
Underneath Jake and Chance’s Garage, Razor and Quiver were in paw-to-paw combat.
“Yah-tie!” Quiver shouted, throwing Razor over her shoulder. Razor crashed into the wall.
“What’s the matter, Razor? Are you just letting her win, or is she kickin’ your tail on her own?” T-Bone asked as he was showing the new Swat Kat Boulder the glovatrix. He looked over his shoulder and smiled.
“Oh, *yeah*, I’m just *letting* her win. I’m makin’ your short-tempered sister think she’s more powerful than me,” Razor said, sarcastically.
“Well, actually, she is. She has that spell book we got from the past. That basically makes her a sorceress,” T-Bone said, coming to Razor and helping him up.
“Hmph! Sorceresses, who needs ’em?” Quiver growled, eyes glowing red.
“OK, I take it back, Quiv. We don’t need any bloodshed in the hangar.” Quiver’s eyes returned to their normal state.
“Don’t call me Quiv,” she said, turning her back.
“*T-Bone* calls you Quiv,” Razor said.
“He’s my brother.” Then she walked away. Razor turned to Boulder.
“How do you put up with her?” he asked.
“Plenty of patience, Razor. She is still under the influence of the dark spell the Fire Skull put on her six years ago in our time. It would be 806 years ago in your time,” Boulder replied. Then the alarm went off.
“Rewo! Does that thing have to be so damn loud?” Quiver growled, covering her ears.
“You’re just not used to it yet, Quiv. You’ll hardly notice it in a few months,” T-Bone said, walking over to the radio hooked up to the wall. He pushed a big red button on it and the alarm shut off.
“T-Bone here. What’s happenin’, Ms. Briggs?”
“T-Bone, you’ve been assigned to go to Zanzibar, Africa to find some statues that were stolen from a museum about ten years,” Deputy Mayor Callie Briggs said.
“Ten years? What took them so long to call us?” Boulder asked.
“We haven’t even been around that long,” Quiver said.
“Yeah. And since when do we do stolen statues in Zanzibar?” Razor asked, crossing his arms.
“Well, I have my orders. It’s a mystery that no one in Zanzibar could solve. They recently heard about you and they want you to try to find ’em. They have reason to believe that a giant mythological spider called Tarantus stole the statues.” T-Bone’s eyes widened.
“Tarantus? Great kats, not him,” he said, putting his paw on his forehead and sitting down in a chair.
“What is it, T-Bone?” Quiver asked.
“Yeah, what’s up, T-Bone?” Razor asked.
“Uh– It’s nothing. Nothing important, guys. Ms. Briggs, we’ll be there.” T-Bone pushed the red button again and ended the call with Callie. Quiver stepped in front of him and put her paws on her hips.
“Chance William Furlong,” she said.
“Crud, how the *hell* did she know my middle name?” Razor cleared his throat and raised his paw.
“Razor, you son of a bitch. You’re lucky my sister is talking to me right now or I’d be kickin’ your tail all over town,” T-Bone said to Razor. Razor chuckled.
“Now, would you mind telling us why you were so shaken when you heard the name Tarantus?”
“Not really, Quiv,” T-Bone replied.
“T-Bone, it’s me. You can tell me.”
“Quiver, it’s obviously something private. We should respect his privacy, *shouldn’t* we?” Razor asked, putting his paw on Quiver’s shoulder. With one hiss from Quiver, Razor removed his paw. T-Bone gave both of them a glare.
“Oh, all right. I’ll tell you.” Razor smiled at Quiver.
“Now *that’s* how you get someone to tell a secret, Quiver,” he said. Quiver’s eyes started glowing again. Razor put up his paws.
“Don’t tell *me* how to get a secret out of someone, Jacob.”
“Patience, Razor. That is all you need,” Boulder said, patting Razor’s shoulder. With *her*? Boulder, you’ve known her all your life and I’ve known her for a week or two besides when we first met 4 years ago, Razor thought.
“OK, guys. This is something I’ve never shown anyone,” T-Bone said, unzipping his G-suit to his chest. He removed the left side of the zipper and lifted his shirt to show blue claw marks on his left side his chest.
“What the hell are those?” Boulder asked. T-Bone zipped his G-suit back up.
“I don’t really know. Tarantus is a monster spider I encountered ten years ago. My folks and I were in Africa for a vacation. Tarantus attacked me and he almost killed me. He took me for dead. When I came to, every living thing was gone,” T-Bone said, putting his paw over his eyes.
“So our parents are…” Quiver began. T-Bone nodded.
“I’ve lost so much in so little time. After my folks were killed, my sister, Angel, disappeared. I haven’t seen her since. All my friends and family seemed to disappear out of my life. So now you see why I wasn’t so fast with making friends with Jake. I didn’t want anyone to get close to me, or they’d die or disappear, too.” A tear ran down his cheek.
“I always wondered about that in the past. I never realize, Bone,” Razor said, putting his paw on T-Bone’s shoulder.
“What about the marks? What do they do?” Boulder asked.
“I don’t know. But something in my bones tell me that I don’t really wanna find out.” T-Bone got out of his chair, then swayed. He sat back down.
“T-Bone, are you OK?” Quiver asked as she and Boulder rushed other to him. T-Bone rubbed his forehead.
“I don’t know. All the blood just rushed to my head. Damn,” he replied.
“I think we should get going to find this giant spider. Maybe he knows what’s happening to you,” Razor said, handing T-Bone a glass of milk. Quiver and Boulder nodded. T-Bone swallowed some of the milk and sighed.
“All right. Get your things together. First thing in the morning, we’re going to Africa.” Chapter 2:
The next morning, the Swat Kats were in Zanzibar. “Razor, you got our Star Weapons?” T-Bone asked.
Razor put a backpack on his back and replied, “All of them including the Wind Daggers.”
“But we don’t use the Wind Daggers,” Quiver said.
“Well… Extra protection, Quiver.” They walked to the nearest town. There was a male kat under a tree, leaning against it. He came to the Kats and spoke in Swahili.
“Great. We forgot about the language,” T-Bone said.
“No problem, T-Bone. The guy’s talking Swahili. Boulder and I know the language. We can talk to him,” Quiver said. Quiver spoke in Swahili. The kat turned to T-Bone and spoke.
“He asked if we’re the Swat Kats,” Quiver said. Boulder replied in Swahili. The kat spoke again.
“His name’s Lebo. He wants us to go with him,” Quiver said. T-Bone shrugged and followed Lebo. The other Kats followed. They followed Lebo to an antique shop. Quiver glared at all the antiques.
“In Oriana, these weren’t antiques,” she said to herself. She looked at one of the necklaces. It was shaped as a sword with a mace on the end and a skull on the handle.
“Now *that’s* my kind of sword. Even if it is a necklace.” Lebo spoke to her.
“Not for sale, huh? Then why is it on the SALES rack?” She repeated the question in Swahili. Lebo replied.
“Thanks.” She replied in Swahili. Quiver grabbed the necklace and put it around her neck. Boulder looked at the necklace she had.
“Did he say you could have that?” he asked.
“As a matter of fact, yes.” Lebo took out a picture of a giant spider scratching other kats and panthers in the background, eyes glowing red.
“Holy kats. That’s Tarantus!” T-Bone said, looking at the picture. Lebo spoke in Swahili. After thirty seconds, he stopped. Quiver and Boulder both had a shocked look on their faces.
“What did he say? Is it bad?” Razor asked.
“If you consider turning into a panther bad, then it’s very bad. All of these panthers were once kats until Tarantus marked them. The result: blue claw marks. The same kind T-Bone has,” Quiver said. T-Bone’s eyes widen.
“I’m gonna turn into a panther? Why didn’t I turn into one ten years ago?” he asked.
“According to legend, whoever is marked by Tarantus will turn into a panther for the first time only in his presence. After that, only at will can return you to your panther state. You were knocked out when you were marked and you had to be conscious for him to bring the spell forward. So you’ve been stuck with a curse that hasn’t worked for ten years.”
“But what that about that dizzy spell I had last night?” T-Bone asked.
“When you showed us the mark, Tarantus discovered that you were still alive. He gave you the dizzy spell to warn you that your panther marks will turn you into a panther very soon,” Boulder said.
“So what you’re saying is that I can still turn into a panther as long as Tarantus is still out there?” T-Bone asked.
“Afraid so, T-Bone.”
“Well, where can we find him?” Boulder turned to Lebo and asked T-Bone’s question. Lebo replied.
“He said to go outside of town into the forest. We might find them there,” Boulder said.
“OK. Thank him and we’ll find someplace to eat,” T-Bone said, heading out the door. Razor and Boulder followed behind them. Quiver stayed behind to talk to Lebo. She spoke in Swahili.
She asked, “Why wasn’t this necklace for sale?” He replied.
“Said to be magical? But what magic would a skull-handled sword necklace have?” Lebo whispered in her ear. Quiver’s eyes widened as he spoke.
“Really? That’s very interesting. Thank you.” And then she left. She caught up with the other Swat Kats.
“Where did you go?” Razor asked.
“Just wanted to talk to Lebo about the necklace,” Quiver said, jerking the necklace. She starred ahead at T-Bone.
“I’m worried, boys. What happens if he turns into a panther? Would he be able to control himself?” she whispered to Razor and Boulder.
“We’ve been asking ourselves the same questions, Quiver,” Razor said.
“Well, what did you answer yourselves?”
“We will just have to wait and see. And be ready for whatever may happen,” Boulder said. Just then, T-Bone stopped. The other Swat Kats walked into him.
“We weren’t ready for *that*,” Razor said.
“Easy, guys. There’s something moving in those bushes,” T-Bone whispered, pointing at the bushes in front of them.
“Allow me,” Quiver said, walking toward the bush. She slowly approached the bush and reached into it. She grabbed and pulled out somebody. It was a she-kat with short brown hair. She was wearing a white sleeveless shirt, light brown pants, and black boots. In her paws was a camcorder.
“Ann Gora? What the hell are you doing here?” Razor asked as he and T-Bone helped her back to her feet.
“Well, I heard you guys were here and I thought I might follow ya for a hot story,” Ann Gora replied.
T-Bone chuckled, “That’s Ann Gora for ya.”
“So, she’s not from around here,” Quiver said.
“No. This is a reporter from back in MegaKat City. Ann, meet the new Swat Kats, Quiver and Boulder. Kats, this is Ann Gora, Kats Eyes News star reporter,” T-Bone said, introducing the three.
“Gee, T-Bone, I never thought you’d go beyond two,” Ann said, shaking Quiver and Boulder’s paws.
T-Bone inhaled and said, “Neither did I. Well, let’s go, Kats.” The four Swat Kats started walking again.
“Hey, wait for me!” Ann said as she ran after the Swat Kats.
“Why should we?” Quiver asked. Ann caught up to T-Bone and replied, “Because I know this area much better than you do. I could be useful to you.”
“As much as I hate to admit it, she’s right. But you have to keep up,” T-Bone said.
“No problem there, T-Bone.” T-Bone put his paw on his forehead and fell to his paws and knees. They all rushed to him.
“Are you all right?” Ann asked. T-Bone removed his helmet and massaged his skull.
“The blood rushed to my head again. I don’t know what’s causing it,” he panted.
“T-Bone, your paw! Look!” Boulder gasped. T-Bone removed his paw and looked at it. It had turned into a panther’s paw.
“It’s starting. Tarantus must be around here somewhere,” he said.
“Say what? What the hell are you talking about?” Ann asked. Razor and Boulder put T-Bone’s arms around their shoulders.
Razor said, “We’ll tell you along the way, Annie. We gotta get movin’ before T-Bone continues to turn into a wild animal.” Chapter 3:
As they reached the forest, the Swat Kats and Ann Gora stopped for a rest. Razor and Boulder stopped carrying T-Bone and leaned him against a tree stump.
“Fellin’ any better, buddy?” Razor asked.
“Hell, no. The panther in me just keeps coming. Aah! There it goes again,” T-Bone panted.
“So T-Bone has been stuck with these marks for ten years without him turning into a panther?” Ann asked.
“Yeah, and now, he’s turning into one. And we don’t know if he can control himself or not,” Quiver said, looking helplessly at her brother.
“Don’t worry, Quiver. I’m sure he can handle it. I mean, all the times he’s saved me and MegaKat City– It’s just incredible.” T-Bone screamed in pain. Quiver and Ann looked to see T-Bone panting and sweating. T-Bone rubbed his sweaty forehead and accidently pulled his mask off, revealing his face. Ann gasped.
“T-Bone! You just showed Ann Gora your face!” Quiver said.
“I’m sorry, Quiv. I don’t know what I’m doing. Aah! But the panther in me sure does.”
“He’s Chance Furlong. He towed my van once. And that would make you…” Ann said, glaring at Razor.
“I can’t believe this,” Razor sighed, taking off his helmet then his mask.
“Jake Clawson. But who are you two?” Quiver starred at Boulder who starred back. Then she starred at Razor.
“Might as well tell her, too.”
“You don’t know me yet, but I’m Katarina Furlong, Chance’s sister. And he’s Buster Whitetail, a friend of ours,” Quiver said.
“Buster Whitetail? He’s my new camera-kat. Since Johnny was assigned a new reporter, I had to get a new one,” Ann said, looking at Boulder.
“Well, it is a job,” Boulder shrugged.
“Now that you know who we are, you gotta promise you’ll never tell anyone. Not Feral, the enforcers, Lt. Feral, the Mayor, the Deputy Mayor, no one! Understand?” Razor asked.
“I understand,” Ann said. T-Bone screamed again. Razor quickly put his mask back on his face.
“Look at him!” he said, looking at T-Bone. T-Bone’s finally changed into a panther. He growled as he got back to his feet. Boulder backed away from him. T-Bone turned his head side to side. He walked over to the group of kats. He jumped on Razor and knocked him to the ground. When T-Bone pinned Razor to the ground, he licked him on the face.
“Yuck! Get him off me!” Razor said, chuckling. T-Bone got off by himself. Ann and Quiver helped Razor get back to his feet.
“He may be different on the outside, but he’s still the same T-Bone on the inside,” Razor said, petting T-Bone on the head. T-Bone purr loudly.
“Damn right. It’s about time you noticed,” the panther said as Razor continued petting him. Razor jerked his paw away. T-Bone starred at him.
“What? Is it my breath?” he asked. He breathed on his paw and smelled it.
“No, it’s not that. You can still talk,” Razor said.
“Although he could stand a breath mint,” Ann joked. T-Bone growled. His eyes glowed red.
“Whoa! I was just joking, T-Bone,” Ann said, holding her paws up. T-Bone’s eyes stopped glowing and he gasped.
“Whoa! How did I do that?”
“Well, my eyes glow whenever I get mad, so… I guess that works the same with your species of panthers,” Quiver said, rubbing her chin.
“Makes perfect sense,” T-Bone said, changing shape. He returned to his normal form.
“Hey, you’re back to normal!” Quiver said as she came to him and hugged him. T-Bone released her.
“Yeah, after I’ve calmed down a bit. Wait a second, Little Sister. I wasn’t suppose to turn into a panther for the first time unless Tarantus was around. So that means…”
Boulder looked up and shouted, “Look out!” All the Kats moved out of the way as a giant spider landed in front of them.
“Tarantus,” T-Bone growled.
“I thought I killed you ten years ago, Furlong. That mistake, I won’t make twice,” the giant spider said. T-Bone then changed back into a panther.
“Ah, a new panther. I think you should be called the Night Prowler,” Tarantus said. Razor kept his eyes on the giant spider as he removed the backpack from his back and handed out the Star Weapons to the other Kats, including Ann. He gave her the Wind Daggers.
“The daggers, huh? Good thing I know how to use ’em,” she said to herself.
“Yah-tie!” Quiver shouted as she ran toward the giant spider. The spider kicked her back into Razor. She knocked him over.
“Glad I ran into you, Razor. Ow! What gives?” Quiver got off of Razor and helped him back up. Then she looked at her right shoulder. There was a wound, gushing out blood.
“Damn it. And I already have a scar there from Jettona,” Quiver said. Then the red blood disappeared to reveal blue kat-like claw marks.
“Damn it. Now T-Bone and I have matching tattoos.” Then she fell to her knees.
“Guys! Now Quiver’s got the mark!” Quiver turned into a panther much quicker than T-Bone. The white eyes she had whenever she wore the mask had turned into her emerald-green eyes and she was still wearing her sword necklace. Her eyes glowed red when she saw Tarantus.
“Another new panther! Splendid. I’ll call her the Black Cat.”
“You’ll be calling an ambulance when we get through with you, Spiderman!” Quiver growled as T-Bone and Boulder charged at the spider. Tarantus took out a bag made out of webbing and took out a black marble. He threw it to the ground where T-Bone and Boulder were. When the marble broke, smoke surrounded them.
“T-Bone!” Quiver and Razor shouted.
“Boulder!” Ann shouted. When the smoke cleared, T-Bone and Boulder had turned into statues. Quiver growled.
“Can’t stay, Black Cat. I gotta run,” Tarantus said, disappearing in a puff of smoke. He took the statues of Boulder and T-Bone as well. Quiver returned to her normal form.
“T-Bone and Boulder. They’re gone.” Chapter 4:
Razor, Quiver, and Ann Gora stood where Tarantus had just disappeared in a puff of smoke with statues of T-Bone and Boulder.
“I can’t believe this! Now it’s just the two of us,” Quiver said, kicking a small rock in the dirt.
“Don’t worry, Quiv. We’ll find ’em,” Razor said, looking around on the ground.
“I told you not to call me Quiv, damn it!” Quiver said as her eyes glowed.
“Why are you taking your temper out on me? Huh?”
“*You’re* the only one who’s making me let my temper out! To be truthful, I act this way because I don’t want to you fall in love with me!”
“What? What do you mean?” Ann asked.
“Ann, this has nothing to do with you,” Razor said.
“Ann asked a good question, Jacob. I’m sure you were gonna ask it, right? I… I noticed that you were looking at me differently lately, like you were falling in love with me. I want to, but I’m afraid.”
“Afraid of what?” Razor asked.
“Well, it’s kind of like what Chance went through. All his family and friends disappeared. His family is mine, remember? And I went through the same thing in the Dark Ages,” Quiver said, voice breaking.
“What do you mean?” Razor asked.
“When I was evil, my enemies killed all my friends. I didn’t want it to happen again so I just decided to act like a grouch to anyone who was falling in love with me. I was doing it for your own safety, Razor!” Quiver fell to her knees and sobbed.
“Well, Jesus, Quiver, I never realize. So that’s why you were so… Hateful towards me.” Quiver wiped her eyes and looked at him.
“Thanks for caring even though I’ve been a real jerk lately.” Razor helped her back up. She kissed him on the cheek. Razor tried hard not to blush.
“Uh, excuse me, Romeo and Juliet. But don’t you have to find the spider that took T-Bone and Boulder?” Ann spoke up.
“She’s right. Let’s kick some tail,” Quiver said, starting to walk away.
“Quiver, in case you’ve forgotten, that spider could make us statues, too,” Razor said. Quiver stopped and returned to him and Ann.
“You’re right. But we need to save them. Do we have any kind of glovatrix missile to blow that marble away from us?”
“Afraid not. Hey, do the Star Weapons have any other power?” Razor asked.
“Why, yes. Call out a certain phrase, like for the Daggers ‘South winds, blow’ then that’s what happens.”
“But can it work when the user has two different weapons?”
“No. One type of weapon to a kat.”
“Then maybe…” Razor said, looking at Ann.
“What are you getting at, Razor?” Ann asked.
“What do you think, Quiver?”
“As long as she has the Wind Daggers, she can do it. But she needs to be a Swat Kat for it to work,” Quiver said.
“Me a Swat Kat? Uh-uh!” Ann said.
“Ann, you already know our secret identities. The least you can do is be a Swat Kat for this one time,” Razor said.
“Well, I guess I could. How do I do it with no G-suit?”
“Simple. Twirl the Daggers through your fingers and say ‘Wind Daggers’,” Quiver said.
“Well, all right. Here goes nothing. Wind Daggers!” A thunderbolt struck the Daggers. The power surged through Ann’s body. She turned around and received a Swat Kat G-suit. Her G-suit was that of Quiver’s. She had a skirt that was over her pants and knee-high boots. And her short brown hair had grown down to about her elbows. It was put into a ponytail. She looked at herself.
“Not too bad. I kinda like it,” she said.
“Now we just need a name. Quiver, was there a female Ancient Warrior?” Razor asked.
“As a matter of fact, there was. The one who had the Wind Daggers was called Shera. That name might as well carry on,” Quiver replied, tugging at her sword necklace.
“Shera? Yeah, I like it.”
“OK, Razor, *Shera*. Now what do we do? We don’t even know where Tarantus took the boys,” Quiver said.
“No sweat, Quiver. I think I found something,” Razor said, knelling down to the ground and peeling away some grass. Quiver and Shera looked curiously. Razor continued to peel away the grass to show metal underneath it.
“A trap door?” Shera asked. “And it continues. It’s big enough for that damn spider to fit through,” Razor said. Quiver walked over to where the statues of Boulder and T-Bone were. She started to peel away at the grass. She found some pipes pointing upward.
“Razor, Shera! I found something else!” she called. Razor and Shera came over to her to find the pipes.
“What are *these* doing here?” Razor asked.
“I don’t know. Maybe the smoke came out of here when the boys were being surrounded by it. And look!” Quiver said, peeling away more grass. There was another trap door that was big enough for both statues.
“Let’s check it out, girls. Think you can open it, Quiver?” Razor asked. Quiver cracked her knuckles and said, “Well, one way to find out. Give me some room.” Razor and Shera moved out of the way as Quiver extended her claws. She dug them through the metal and tried to pull them out. She sighed and pulled her claws out. She returned her claws back into her fingers.
“Sorry, Razor. I guess it’s too thick,” she said, rubbing her paws.
“But you left your claw marks in there. That’s pretty damn impressive,” Shera said.
“Thanks, She, but it’s not good enough. Wait a second.” Quiver took off her necklace and removed the sword. She felt her new shoulder wound and removed it. There was blood there. She put the sword in the blood-covered paw and then laid the sword on the ground. Instantly, the necklace-size sword grew into a warrior-size sword. Quiver picked it up and looked at it.
“Quiver, how did you do that?” Razor asked.
“Lebo told me that to make the magic in the sword grow into a warrior-size sword, I had to cover it with fresh blood. Right now, I’m gonna try to pry open that door,” Quiver said, stabbing the sword into the door. She pushed the sword and opened the trapdoor all the way.
“Way to go, Quiver!” Razor said, jumping into the trapdoor. Shera and Quiver followed. They found themselves in a small room that had two statues in it. They were shaped like T-Bone and Boulder.
“Why would Tarantus leave his statues here?” Shera asked.
“Who knows? Wait a minute. This statue isn’t Boulder,” Razor said.
“What do you mean?” Shera asked.
“Look. It’s just a model of a knight that was fixed to look like him. And this is just a panther statue.” Quiver looked at the bottom of one of the statues.
“‘Museum of Ancient Statues’? These are some of the stolen statues from the musuem!” she said.
“Then T-Bone and Boulder are still alive,” Razor said. They heard distant roaring.
“Let us go, you son of an arachnid!”
“T-Bone!” the three shouted.
“Let’s rock, Kats!” And they ran in the direction of the roaring. They hid behind the corner when they found T-Bone and Boulder. T-Bone was in his panther form, growling. He had a cuff around his neck to keep him from attacking. Boulder was chained to the wall.
“When Razor and Quiver find you–!” T-Bone growled.
“What can *they* do? Nothing as far as I’m concerned,” Tarantus said. Quiver’s eyes glowed red.
“Easy, Quiver. Don’t go all wild on us yet,” Razor whispered.
“OK, I’ll try,” Quiver said as her eyes returned to normal state.
“Razor and Quiver can do more than you know, Tarantus,” Boulder said, struggling while still in chains.
“So what? I can handle the little fools.”
“You got any of those crazy ideas T-Bone tells me about, Razor?” Quiver asked. Razor rubbed his chin and looked behind Tarantus. There was an army of panthers with red collars, all identical except for the claw marks in various places.
“Get used to this, Quiver, because you’ll be hearing a lot of it in the future. I’ve got an idea that’s just crazy enough to work,” Razor said.
“Spill it, Razor,” Shera said.
“OK, girls, here’s my plan…” Chapter 5:
T-Bone and Boulder continued to struggle in their chains while a group of panther circled around them. Each of them had a red collar around their necks. One of them put a red collar around T-Bone’s neck. T-Bone tried to pull it off, but it would not come off.
“Nice collar, but I prefer blue.”
“You might as well give in, Night Prowler. We’re all his slaves and you’re gonna have to learn to except it,” one panther said. His claw marks were across his back.
“And who are you to know so much?” T-Bone asked.
“I’m called the Stalker, but I wasn’t always. I was once from MegaKat City,” the panther said.
“MegaKat City? Who are you really?”
“Michael Furlong, why?”
“Furlong?” Boulder asked. T-Bone’s eyes widen.
“Why are you so surprised, Prowler?” Stalker asked.
“Aw, c’mon. Don’t tell me you’ve forgotten your own *son*?”
“How have you been the last ten years, Dad?”
“I thought for sure Tarantus killed you, Chance,” Stalker said, rubbing his head against T-Bone’s neck.
“I thought the same thing, Dad.”
“Psst, T-Bone,” one of the panthers said, extending a claw.
“Take it easy, lady,” T-Bone said.
“What? You think I’d kill my own brother?” the panther asked.
“You know any other Scottish females around in Zanzibar?” she asked, picking the lock on T-Bone’s neck cuff.
“But what happened to you?” T-Bone asked as he rubbed his neck.
“What? You didn’t notice Tarantus marking me?” Quiver asked, picking Boulder’s locks.
“No, actually. Quiver, I’d like you to meet our Dad,” T-Bone said.
“So he *is* alive. Where’s our mother?”
“The Huntress is in another part of the underground tunnel. Come,” Stalker said, crouching down to pass Tarantus. The others followed. Quiver pulled off the red belt that she used as a collar.
“Psst, Razor, Shera!” she whispered. Razor and Shera peered around the corner. Quiver moved her tail in different directions, telling them to go around the other way to meet back up with them. Razor gave her “thumbs up” and he and Shera disappeared around the corner. She quickly caught up with the group of panthers. Later, they found a new group of panthers in the other part of the underground tunnel. Quiver had already returned to her normal form while T-Bone and the group of panthers stayed.
“Dad, why can’t we change back into our kat forms?” T-Bone asked.
“It’s these collars. They prevent us from changing,” Stalker said.
“Well, I don’t like it. And it’s a little tight.”
“Come on, Prowler,” the panther with the claw marks across his face said, walking towards the new group of panthers.
“Claw. What brings you down to this part of the tunnel?” the panther with the claw marks one her left front leg asked.
“Ask the Stalker,” Claw said as Stalker and T-Bone approached the group.
“Stalker!” one of the panthers said, rubbing her head against Stalker’s neck.
“Huntress, I believe you know the Night Prowler,” Stalker said, putting his paw on T-Bone’s back.
“I heard there was a new panther, but I haven’t met him yet,” Huntress replied.
“You know me better than you think, Mom. It’s me– Chance,” T-Bone said.
“Chance? But I thought he was killed.”
“Not quite. I don’t know how he survived, he I’m glad he did,” Stalker said. Huntress rubbed her head against his neck and licked his face.
“Aw, Mom, not in front of these guys,” T-Bone said, wiping his face.
“T-Bone!” two voices said. It was Razor and Shera. T-Bone pinned Razor to the ground and licked his face.
“T-Bone! I’m glad to see you, too. But I don’t like you licking my face,” Razor said, shoving T-Bone off. T-Bone then eyed Shera.
“Actually, the name’s Shera for now, T-Bone,” Shera said.
“What took you so long?” Quiver asked as Shera handed Quiver her sword.
“We ran into some angry panthers. It took us a couple of mini octopus missiles, but we nailed them,” Razor said. Razor took a look at T-Bone’s collar.
“This isn’t really your color, T-Bone. Want me to get it off?”
“Please. It’s starting to get tight,” T-Bone said, pulling his collar away from his neck.
“OK. Shera, could I borrow one of your daggers for a second?” Shera nodded and handed him one of the daggers.
“OK, T-Bone, hold still,” Razor said, pulling T-Bone’s collar. With the dagger, he brought it down on the collar, but it would not cut.
“Apparently, we need to have these daggers sharpen,” Razor said, looking over the dagger.
“Let me try my claws,” Quiver said, cracking her knuckles and extending her claws. She brought the claws to the collar, but, surprisingly to the Swat Kats, it would not cut.
“Damn it! What’s the matter with these claws? I’m gonna have a word with that kat who does my nails,” Quiver hissed. Then they heard a deep laugh. The panthers began to gasp.
“Why is this collar gettin’ tighter?!” T-Bone asked, grasping the collar and choking.
“It’s Tarantus! He punishes panthers with the collars,” Stalker said, choking. The Swat Kats screamed as the ceiling began to collapse.
“Girls, get down!” Razor shouted, pushing Quiver to the ground. Boulder quickly did the same for Shera. The ceiling collapsed on the four Swat Kats.
“Razor! Quiv!” T-Bone shouted, choking. They heard the deep laughter again.
“And so ends the nine lives of the Swat Kats. And so shall their leader join them!” Chapter 6:
Tarantus appeared with an evil grin spread across his face. Even when he was choking from the tight collar, T-Bone growled and bared his teeth.
“Oh, you’re mad because I killed your friends? Don’t worry. You’ll be joining them soon enough!” Tarantus smacked T-Bone, knocking him into the wall. T-Bone rubbed his skull while Tarantus approached him. Suddenly, Stalker and Huntress jumped on the spider’s back.
“Stay away from our son, you son of an arachnid!” Stalker growled.
“Mom, Dad, don’t!” T-Bone shouted. While the fight continued, T-Bone starred at the pile of rubble that covered the Swat Kats.
“If they were alive, they would’ve came out by now,” he said to himself. Underneath the rubble, Razor and Boulder regained their senses. They both coughed as they realized that they were trapped in an enclosed place. They were lying right on top of the girls.
“Ev’rybody all right?” Razor asked.
“I’m OK,” Boulder said.
“Yeah, we’re fine,” Shera coughed.
“Well, I’ve been better. Don’t get too comfortable in that position, Razor,” Quiver said. She suddenly perked her ears up.
“Uh-oh. We gotta get outta here. T-Bone’s in trouble,” she said. Razor and Shera perked their ears up.
“I don’t hear anything,” Razor said.
“Me neither,” Shera shrugged.
“Quiver has an advanced hearing. She can hear all kinds of stuff we cannot,” Boulder said.
“Oh, how are we gonna get outta here?” Quiver asked.
“Well, it’s time to see if these daggers can live up to their name,” Shera said as she took out her daggers.
“South winds, blow!” The daggers instantly began to glow. A gush of wind blew enough of the rubble away for the Kats to dig their way through to the outside.
“Hey, it works!” Shera chuckled.
“C’mon! T-Bone’s still in trouble,” Quiver said. Outside of the rubble, T-Bone joined the fight with his parents on Tarantus’ back.
“Why can’t we do this more often, Dad?” T-Bone joked.
“When was the last time you fought something this big?” Stalker asked.
“Hmm, let’s see. There was Rex Shard, that giant wax scorpion, the giant bacteria, the T-Rex, and a whole lot of things you don’t know about.” Then the three panthers were thrown off of the spider’s back.
“Uh-oh. Don’t look now, Dad. But I think that spider’s ticked,” T-Bone said, watching Tarantus come toward them.
“Supreme thunder, crash!” a voice shouted. A flash of light struck the spider to the ground.
“What the hell–?” T-Bone asked. He looked at the pile of rubble and saw the Swat Kats standing on top of it all.
“Hey, buddy. Missed us?” Razor asked, smiling.
“Kats! You’re alive!”
“More or less,” Quiver said, brushing the dirt off her suit.
“Let’s squish that spider!” Boulder shouted.
“Lemme at ‘im!” Quiver said, taking out her Japanese stars.
“Ice shards, blast!” She threw the stars at Tarantus as he was coming around. The stars circled around him, frost started to form on his legs. The stars suddenly imprisoned him in a block of ice. Quiver caught the stars as they returned to her.
“I like this,” she said to herself. Then T-Bone started choking again.
“Could one of you, *please*, get this collar off me?!” he choked. Quiver took her sword and brought it to T-Bone’s collar. It instantly cut it off. T-Bone gasped to catch his breath.
“Ah! That’s better. Thanks, Sis,” T-Bone said, rubbing his neck.
“Quite unusual. Why did the sword cut through the collar when my claws wouldn’t?” Quiver asked herself.
“Well, you said it had magic in it,” Razor shrugged. T-Bone instantly changed back into his normal form.
“Ah, that’s better. So, who wants to squish the spider?” T-Bone gestured with his thumb.
“Let’s try a combination blast. We all fire at him with our weapons,” Shera said.
“But he’s the only one who can break the panther curse,” T-Bone said.
“T-Bone, we gotta prevent that spider from ever giving other kats the curse. It’s the only way,” Quiver said, putting her paw on his shoulder. T-Bone sighed and took out his sword.
“All right. On three, we get ‘im. OK, Kats. Fireballs…” T-Bone’s sword started to burn with fire.
“Supreme thunder…” Razor said as his whip started to grow a spark.
“Ice shards…” Quiver said as her stars started to develop frost.
“Earth jolt…” Boulder said as his boomerang started to vibrate.
“South winds…” Shera said as her daggers started to start a breeze.
“All right, Kats. 3! Ignite!” T-Bone swung his sword. Razor cracked his whip.
“Crash!” Quiver threw her stars.
“Blast!” Boulder threw his boomerang.
“Boom!” Then Shera tossed her daggers.
“Blow!” The fire, thunder, ice, earthquake, and wind all attacked at once. All of the panthers took cover. As Tarantus escaped from the ice prison, he was attacked again. The wind blew him back into the wall. The ice closed him into an ice prison again. The earthquake opened a hole in the ground, making the spider fall in. Then the hole closed when they heard a loud thud. The thunder and fire sealed the hole tight.
“Yes!” the Swat Kats shouted, and gave each other high-fives. Suddenly, all of the panthers changed shape. They all returned to their kat forms and lost their claw marks.
“We’re back to normal!” they all chattered. T-Bone ran through the crowd.
“Mom? Dad?” A couple came toward him. They reached for his mask. Normally, he would back away, but not now. They removed his mask.
“Chance. Look how you’ve grown,” his mother said. Quiver stood next to him.
“Quiver, meet Mom and Dad. Mom and Dad, meet your long lost daughter, Katarina,” T-Bone said.
“Katarina. Welcome back, dear.” Quiver hugged her mother. T-Bone noticed her shoulder. There were still blue kat-like claw marks.
“Quiv, you still got the curse on you,” he said. Quiver looked.
“So do you, T-Bone,” she said. T-Bone unzipped his G-suit, lifted his shirt, and looked at the left side of his chest. There were still claw marks there.
“I can’t believe this. Why is ev’ryone else panther-free and we’re not?”
“It was the collars. The ones that served Tarantus were to be returned to normal if he was ever defeated and the collars would do it. Unfortunately for you, your curse is still active,” his father said. T-Bone lowered his eyes.
“We’ll make the best of it, T-Bone. The curse could come in handy. You’ll be the Night Prowler, and I’ll be the Black Cat,” Quiver said.
“Well, I guess. Right now, we got some catching up to do.” Razor, Boulder, and Shera watched the family hug.
“Well, I must say, it was a pleasure fighting with you, Ann,” Boulder said to Shera.
“Ah, call me Shera. I kinda liked kickin’ tail. If T-Bone says it’s OK, I’ll join ya,” Shera said.
“I’ll make sure he does, since you know who we are now.” Razor lowered his eyes and walked away.
“Razor, where are you goin’?” Shera asked.
“I’m just goin’ back up to the surface,” Razor said as he disappeared. Chapter 7:
Razor was glad to be home, but not glad to be alone. He leaned against a tree that was on a cliff that was looking over MegaKat City. He took off his mask and ran his fingers through his hair. Suddenly, he heard a twig crack. His ears twitched. He extended his claws and attacked the nearest thing. He knocked the nearest thing to the ground.
“Quiver? Sorry, I thought you were someone else,” Razor said, helping Quiver up.
“You shouldn’t have your mask off when you still have your G-suit on. It’s dangerous,” Quiver said, putting his mask back on his face.
“Why do *you* care?”
“Because I do. If they find out who you are, they’ll find out who the rest of the team are. You seemed really… Bothered when we came back home. I just wanted to see what was bothering you.” Razor turned his back to her.
“*Nothing* is bothering me. Just go back and get to know your folks better.”
“All right, fine. I’ll go home,” she said, walking away. She ran into T-Bone on her way back.
“What are you doing here?” Quiver asked.
“I came to see what’s wrong with Razor,” T-Bone replied.
“Something’s pissing him off, but he won’t tell me,” Quiver said.
“And you’re leaving him?”
“I’m making him think I’m leaving him. I care for him more than you think. You wanna talk to him?”
“As a matter of fact, I do. C’mon, Sis,” T-Bone said, grabbing Quiver’s arm and pulling her toward Razor. Razor sighed as he heard footsteps.
“Didn’t I tell you to go away?” he asked, annoyed. He looked back to see Quiver with T-Bone.
“Yeah, but you didn’t tell *me* to go away,” T-Bone said.
“What are you doing here, T-Bone?” Razor asked.
“I came to talk.”
“Well, I don’t want to talk.”
“OK, we see you’re mad at us at the moment, so…” T-Bone said, starting to walk away. Then Razor sighed.
“Wait, T-Bone. I’m not *mad* at you guys. I-I’m just… Jealous.” T-Bone turned around and looked at Razor’s sad face.
“Jealous? Of us? Why?”
“You guys have a family now, and I grew up with no friends, no family. You guys had someone who loved you, *I* didn’t! I grew up in an orphanage, no one loved me. Do you have *any* idea how I felt then?” Razor asked, burying his face in his paws.
“Razor. I’m sorry, I never knew,” T-Bone said, putting his paw on his shoulder.
“Razor, you *have* a family. The Swat Kats and your friends are your family. You know that, don’t you?” Quiver asked. Razor removed his face from his paw and looked at her.
“I guess I do. I always did consider T-Bone like an older brother to me,” he smiled at T-Bone.
“Yeah, and I consider you a little brother, myself. You still jealous?” T-Bone asked. Razor smiled.
“How can I be jealous at my family?” He and T-Bone clasped paws, then hugged. Quiver crossed her arms and smiled.
“C’mon, Little Bro. Let’s go home.” Razor looked at Quiver.
“Uh, I just wanna talk to Quiver real quick, T-Bone. We’ll be there in a minute.” T-Bone shrugged and headed back to the Cyclotron. Razor and Quiver stood there for a moment.
“Thanks for showing me I got a family, Quiver,” Razor finally said.
“Oh, call me Quiv,” Quiver said, coming close to Razor. They were now face to face, close enough to kiss.
“Have you ever been in love before?”
“Well, I’ve had crushes on girls, but I’ve never really fallen in love. How about you?” Quiver shook her head.
“Never. But there’s a first time for everything… If you’re ready, Razor?”
“I’m ready whenever you are.”
She whispered, “I’m ready now.” They starred into each other’s eyes, then kissed. T-Bone watched from his seat in the Cyclotron, and smiled.
“Well, looks like my little brother is now a lady’s kat.” And he waited for them to finish their kiss as the sun set in the west.
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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.