Original SWAT Kats Story

Every Mother’s Prayer

By Kristen Sharpe

  • 1 Chapter
  • 1,516 Words

A companion to Kristen and Sage SK’s “The Light Shines in the Darkness” series. In the alternate universe of “Dark Side of the SWAT Kats,” Jake’s mother hears that Chance and Jake have escaped from Alkatraz… and fears for their safety more than anything they might do.

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Author's Notes:

  • Title: Every Mother’s Prayer
  • Author: Kristen Sharpe
  • Date: September 2, 2001 October 4, 2001

While listening to my soundtrack to “Quest for Camelot,” I came to “The Prayer.” And, it immediately hit me that the words were exactly the sort of thing either of the two Dark SWAT Kats’ mothers would be saying about them throughout their SWAT Kat “career.” So, like Sage, I sat down and wrote an additional/spin-off chapter to the “They That Walk in Darkness/The Light Shines in the Darkness” series. It’s similar to a songfic, but not exactly, as the song only figures into the story at the end. At any rate, it’s my first attempt at anything like a songfic. Please let me know what/where/if this needs some work. I wrote it in a single morning, but, as you can see, I’ve toyed with it for a month.

This story is set immediately after the events of Breakout, the first chapter of “The Light Shines in the Darkness.” Please note that it likely won’t make much sense unless you have read “They That Walk in Darkness” and the start of “The Light Shines in the Darkness” first.

“This is Ann Gora with breaking news. Authorities report that there has been a breakout on Alkatraz Island.”

My eyes fly from the pages of my book to the television screen. I had been listening to it only half-heartedly. Now, it has my full attention. The familiar brunette reporter is there, standing in front of the main gates at the prison. Anything behind her becomes a blur as the camera focuses on her face.

What…. did she say?

“The first indication of trouble was the muffled sound of an explosion coming across the bay this evening at approximately 9:15 pm.”

The image changes to a hazy shot of the rocky island as seen from the city side of the bay. The picture is dark. The lights of the prison glowing on the water are all that make it visible. But, above the dark shape, I can see smoke rising, black even against the dark night sky.

No.

I can only stare and mouth a soundless prayer as the reporter’s voice continues. The book in my right hand slides away and thumps onto the floor. But, I don’t reach to get it. It doesn’t matter right now.

“There was no alarm and no distress call from prison officials. But, Enforcer Headquarters immediately attempted to contact the prison. Receiving no answer, choppers were quickly mobilized. What they found was total chaos.”

My heart is thudding against my ribcage loudly, as though trying to escape.

Please. Not Dark Kat again. Is my son safe? Tell me!

The screen changes to a series of confusing, bobbing shots of the prison interior. The images flash across the screen, imprinting themselves on my mind. I know I will see them over and over again for days to come. A large room apparently gutted by the explosion. It seems someone is saying something about it having been a cafeteria. Enforcers with heavy energy rifles are running everywhere. Barking orders angrily. Pushing the camera aside. Inmates huddling in their cells as far from the cameras and suspicious Enforcers as they can get. Guards lying on the floor.

Over and over.

No.

The reporter’s face reappears.

“No one seems to have been seriously injured in this apparent jailbreak. Eight guards were taken to MegaKat Memorial Hospital to be treated for blaster burns. The remaining guards were examined on the scene and released with only mild headaches and small burns from stun blasts.”

Thank Heaven.

“Fifty prisoners escaped from Alkatraz tonight – most on the same side of the prison. Prisoners on the far side of the island appear to have been completely unaware of the breakout.”

Please… Where is my son?

“Among the missing are the infamous SWAT Kats….”

No.

“…to whom Commander Feral attributes this escape.”

No.

The camera moves to the right and focuses on the Commander.

“That’s right, Ann,” the square-jawed commander growls, his posture indicating he’d rather be anywhere but in front of the camera. “Of all the criminals that escaped, only the SWAT Kats were high profile enough to have mustered this kind of backup to help them escape.”

No.

I can only stare at the television set. But, I’m not seeing what’s on the screen anymore. Barely listening as the report continues, droning on about finding the boat the prisoners used to escape. But, not the prisoners.

They haven’t found the prisoners. No one knows where my son is. Where my sons are.

A breakout at Alkatraz… Impossible. And,… a breakout that was masterminded by my son?

No. Chance and Jake wouldn’t do that. Jake has been mailing me for weeks now.

His letters are so honest. So haunted.

No. He would *not* have broken out. Not now. The Commander can think what he wants about Chance and Jake planning an escape. But, he’s not their mother. I am. And, I have never lied to myself about the seriousness of my son’s actions. But, I’ve never doubted his heart either.

He may have lost touch with it for two long, painful years, but it was always there.

And, Chance’s too.

He’s my second son. The brother Jake never had. The hurting young kat Jake brought home with him from the Academy. So tough on the outside. So vulnerable and lonely on the inside.

And, now I’m worried for both of them. Scared to death. Will the Enforcers shoot them on sight? Feral’s never hesitated to use force – and I can’t blame him for that. It’s usually needed in this city.

But, this time, the criminals he’s after are my sons.

Again.

I feel myself trembling.

Where are they? Lost. Hunted. Cold. Hungry.

Wiping at the tears trickling through my facial fur, I turn off the television.

What now?

I stand, unable to sit still any longer. I need to move.

Lost, I move to step out onto the deck that runs across the back of the house. The sliding glass door creaks as I slide it away. Outside, a soft murmur of “night voices” greets me. Their steady thrum is the only sound save the soft groan of the wooden boards beneath my bare feet. Stepping to the far side of the deck, I can just barely see the shapes of the city in the distance. Its lights illuminate the sky with a hazy, unnatural glow.

I look away and up into the clear night sky. There is no moon tonight, but the stars are burning brightly. The only lights in the darkness.

Where is my little boy now? Where are both my boys now? Are they safe?

All I can do now is pray. Pray they’re safe. Cared for.

I close my eyes.

I pray You’ll be my eyes,

And, watch them where they go.

And, help them to be wise,

Help me to let go.

There is nothing I can do now but this. It is out of my hands.

I can only pray. A prayer I’m sure every mother has said at least once.

Every mother’s prayer,

Every child knows

Lead them to a place

Guide them with Your grace

To a place where they’ll be safe.

<Oh, please, find a safe place for them…. I know they can’t come here. I’m surprised Feral and his Enforcers haven’t come beating down my door before now.>

But, Chance and Jake never came here. Through two years of being the SWAT Kats, I never heard from my sons. I don’t think they forgot me. No. They were just protecting me.

And, now… I must protect them. I can’t wish them here where I can mother them. No matter how much I want to. But, I pray they will find some place safe. I pray they find Your light And, hold it in their heart As darkness falls each night, Remind them where You are.

<Please guide them… Watch them. They are so lost. So hurting.>

<Heal that hurt, that hole, in both their souls.>

<That pain that makes each of my son’s letters bring tears to my eyes.>

I can only imagine the nightmares locked behind that sweet face. The darkness in his eyes.

<Fill them with light again.>

Every mother’s prayer,

Every child knows.

Need to find a place

Guide them to place

Give them faith so they’ll be safe.

<Protect my boys on this dark night. I leave them in Your hands.>

Lead them to a place

Guide them with Your grace

To a place where they’ll be safe.

—————————————

–All lyrics taken from “The Prayer” by Carole Bayer Sager and David Foster, as it appears on the soundtrack to “Quest for Camelot.” (There are a couple other versions of this song devised more for general listening and not as dependent on the movie setting.)

3 comments on “Every Mother’s Prayer”

  1. Beth says:

    That is really touching and sweet to hear

  2. Beth says:

    And it is true

  3. Guest says:

    Totally moving story.

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