Just a couple of points that might need explanation. In thisstory there is a reference to dogs being used by the Enforcers thesewould be like our four legged friends that sniff for bombs or drugs.There are also references to two people that we would know in thehuman world, the late actor Peter Cushing and former President RonaldReagan they are assumed to be kats for the purposes of this story. Ihope that will clear up any confusion. questions, comments andobservations accepted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Commander Feral woke to the sound of a telephone ringing.He was still groggy from the previous night’s escapades that had alsoleft him bruised and battered. Picking up the telephone from itscradle he answered, “This is Feral.”
“Commander?” His secretary Robin asked recognizing hisvoice even though most of the bombast had gone, “Are you coming in towork today?”
“Ahugh what?” Commander Feral made a Nixon like noise.
“Work sir it’s after ten thirty.”
He looked at his clock radio it read 10:34, “Holy kats I’mlate!” A shot of adrenaline went through him he dropped the phone andspastically kicked out depositing himself on the floor as a result.He regained his composure picked up the television remote control andflopped back onto his bed. He turned on the TV only to see a pictureof Lieutenant Commander Steele. The announcer did a voice overexplaining the situation of the previous night. “The situation couldhave turned deadly last night.” He intoned, “Horst Chemical USA hasissued a press release informing us that when mixed with ethylalcohol their non-lethal nerve gas becomes a toxic nerve poison.”
“Is Steele out of his mind?” Commander Feral thought alouda stunned expression on his face.
“Originally developed for the German Army this. . .”
Commander Feral changed the channel. Now Ann Gora wasreporting from the atrium of the Steele Building. An impressive arrayof tropical plants and fountains expanded behind her. People weavedthrough the passageways soaking in the beauty and majesty of thebuilding.
“. . .exploded in the mail room of the Steele Building. Itis reported that mail equipment has been destroyed and two mail roomworkers were injured. What has not been reported is who delivered thebomb.”
Commander Feral groaned, “From one crisis to another.”
The news story droned on about things Commander Feral hadlittle interest in, namely Steele’s father. Leslie Steele was adespicable kat with a knack for turning tragedy into personaltriumph. If Feral had his choice to spend eternity chained to theLieutenant Commander or his father he would pick the LieutenantCommander.
The story ended and Ann Gora appeared on a reduced screenso that a male announcer could ask her questions and be seen by theviewers. “Ann, have there been any further updates on this bombing?”The male announcer asked Ann turned in a way that looked like he wasfacing both Ann and the viewers.
“The only major development has been that bomb sniffingdogs have been brought in to help with identifying trace residuesfrom the blast. No other new information has been made public yet. Itremains stated that a bomb has exploded in the mail room of theSteele Building downtown. As yet the Enforcers have no clue to whohas sent the bomb or the reason for doing so. This is Ann GoraKatseye News.”
Commander Feral turned off the TV and began massaging histemples. Not only did he have to deal with Steele’s senseless act ofstupidity but he also had to deal with a high profile bombing. Feralturned to look at the clock again, it now read 10:38, “I guess I hadbetter get going if I’m going to deal with this.”
The Steele Building mail room was in a shambles; mailequipment was destroyed and letters were scattered everywhere. Yellowcrime scene tape cordoned off the area while Enforcers, including abomb sniffing dog, worked on searching for clues. Two injured mailsorters were taken to the hospital others were treated in thebuilding now they just looked in the door watching the Enforcers.Phones went unanswered as calls from all over the building came inwondering where the mail was. Into this maelstrom stepped FelinaFeral her paw rubbed her head as she attempted to get over lastnight’s festivities.
“Status report sergeant.” She asked.
“A small package bomb exploded here about 8:32 thismorning. The witnesses say that it was in Leslie Steele’s personalmail. We’ve been collecting fragments and residue traces but with allof this mess it is taking a while.” Both kats turned at the sound ofan excited he-kat squawking about getting into the mail room. He wasarguing with the guard at the door who was not going to let him in.
“I’ll take care of this.” Felina said to the sergeant asshe walked over to the doorway.
The problem was a short glasses wearing kat with apronounced stutter probably brought on by the stress he was under waswagging a claw in the face of the guard. “I-I-I demand t-t-to seewho’s in charge here.”
“That would be me. Let him in corporal.”
“L-L-Lieutenant I want to know why this mail room is shutdown. w-w-we have business we have to conduct.”
“We’re working as quickly as possible to collect anyevidence but it will take a little time. We should be done shortly.”
“S-s-see that you are. M-M-Mr. Steele is quite displeasedat what is going on here.”
Felina’s patience with this butt kissing yes kat had runout. “You can tell Mr. Steele that we will have this place runningwhen we have it running and as for you if you ever talk to one of myEnforcers like that again! I will personally tie you into an oblongshape and kick your ass through a goal post!”
“W-w-well I never.” He stormed off probably to tell on her.
“Maybe you should have.”
Commander Feral walked out of the elevator into the lobbyof the Enforcer building’s administration floor. He turned and swipedhis card through the card reader charging the balance of the day tocomp time. He turned and walked down the hall where the LieutenantCommanders’ offices were. He knew they would not be there though;they would be in the conference room goofing off.
The Lieutenant Commanders were the ones who actually ranthe departments that made up the Enforcers so they did not actuallyhave to do any kind of work outside the office. For that matterneither did Commander Feral, though he believed that the chief lawenforcement officer should be seen by the public actually doingsomething. He had that same policy for Steele but he dropped it whenSteele became more of a problem than he was worth.
Steele was in the conference room with four of the otherlieutenant commanders. They were sharing office gossip while eatingdonuts and drinking coffee. Lieutenant Commander Pawdling, a close toretiring veteran of the old Megakat City Police department, and oneof the few kats in the Enforcers who could actually claim to be oneof Steele’s friends questioned Steele about his father’s particularhabits. “I really can’t believe that your dad actually has someoneopen his mail for him.”
“My dad would pay someone to go to the bathroom for him ifhe could figure out how.” Steele leaned back in the swivel chairdrinking from his coffee mug.
“Is that what you rich kats do, pay people to do the tasksyou don’t like?” Lt. Comdr. Ozon the, internal affairs director,dropped the newsmagazine she was reading to look at Steele.
“If we didn’t just think of where the economy would be,besides being rich isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.”
“It sure beats being poor.” Lt. Comdr. Riesenbaum chief ofdefense for the Megakat district chuckled he was joined by Vice’s Lt.Comdr. Belhamn and the others.
Commander Feral had seen enough, “Steele!” He roaredstartling all the conference room’s occupants, “I want to see you inmy office in five minutes!” Feral turned and left the room walkingquickly to his own office.
“Busted!” Lt. Comdr. Pawdling called out to thehyperventilating Steele.
“Good morning Robin I’ll need a request for leave form andmy messages.”
Feral’s secretary gave him the leave form and read off hismessages. “One from Deputy Mayor Briggs she sounded kind of whoosey,two from Katco Oil Company asking where their money is, and one fromyour brother.”
Commander Feral shuddered. Few things gave him a chill likehaving to talk to his brother. “Thank you Robin is there any thingelse?”
“Oh yes, one from someone who declined to give their namesays that ‘Commander Feral is a big fat stupid head.’” Robin begantyping.
“I hope that you put that person straight.” Commander Feralsaid.
“I did sir, I told him you were not fat.” Robin said as shecontinued typing
“You know I would fire you but your too damn good”
“I know that sir.”
Commander Feral walked into his office. The telephoneloomed large over him he knew that on the other end of the line inWashingtom wait his brother ready to sting him with a few one liners.Commander Feral picked up the receiver and dialed his brother’snumber hoping he’d be in committee. No such luck, “This is Feral,”The voice on the other end of the line said.
At 52 years old, congresskat Robert Feral was seven yearsCommander Feral’s senior but he could still easily pass for hisbrother in the looks department though he was slightly shorter andhad longer hair that was salted with gray especially around thetemples. This gave him a look somewhat like his daughter.
“Bob it’s Ulysses” Commander Feral said without muchenthusiasm.
“Well its about time you called. Did you get my shirt?”Representative Feral said gleefully barely suppressing a laugh.
“Yes I got it”
“Good my daughter never called me last night. She usuallydoes when she serves as a conduit for my gifts”
“As long as we’re on the subject, will you be escorting myperpetually dateless daughter to my fund-raiser at the end ofOctober? The president will be there.”
“What makes you think I wouldn’t have a date?”
Representative Feral laughed, an annoying laugh not anormal one, “You, a date!” he laughed again.
Commander Feral winced there was something about hisbrothers laugh that rubbed him the wrong way. “It could happen.”
“You’re serious,” Bob Feral paused, “you’re not going tobring that rubber she-kat that I sent you three years ago because Idon’t want to be embarrassed in front of the president.”
Commander Feral rolled his eyes only to catch the sight ofLieutenant Commander Steele meekly entering the room. “Listen BobI’ll have to let you go I have a meeting to attend to. I’ll talk toyou later, ummmm bye.” Feral hung up the phone and turned to Steele,”Thank God you’re here that brother of mine would have driven mecrazy.”
Steele could not believe that Commander Feral was actuallyhappy to see him, “What did you want to see me about sir?”
“Did you think that I would not find out about you decidingto use nerve gas last night Lieutenant?”
Lieutenant Commander Steele gulped before starting, “Ithought that it would be a good idea to stun everyone and inject themwith the antidote while they were still.”
Commander Feral leaned back in his chair, “At least youshowed that you were thinking. However I learned something newtoday.” Feral pulled a presss release from a stack of papers on hisdesk, “Can you read this for me? It’s in German and I can’t read it.”He pointed to a specific passage that had been marked.
“Uhhh, Achtung,” He started.
“In English please.”
“Warning: Do not use in proximity with ethyl alcohol.”
“Do you know what ethyl alcohol is Lieutenant?”
“The alcohol that is used for drinking.” Steele saidsheepishly
“Correct, now do you know why the Germans do not use thisparticular nerve gas in their arsenal?”
“It is because they found out that when it comes intocontact with alcohol it becomes toxic. Now, do you know what wouldhave happened when that much nerve gas would come in contact with allthe ethyl alcohol in and around that fair?”
“You would have created a nerve toxin that would havekilled not only the festival goers and yourself and the Enforcersnearby, but a good portion of the population that lives downtown.”Commander Feral leaned forward and clasped his paws together. “Nowwhat am I to do about the fact that my second in command thought upthis idiotic scheme?”
“A pat on the back and a ‘try harder’?”
“No, I was thinking more along the lines of a suspension.The only problem is when can it be served. This week requires you tobe here till Thursday, and Friday you have to finish collecting moneyfor the football pool. Next Monday and Tuesday are out you have topay off the winners and start a new pool. So is next Thursday andFriday. I guess you’ll have to be suspended next Wednesday. Thatreminds me are my squares available in the pool?” Steele produced thepaper with one hundred squares on it most of which were filled withpeoples’ names. Commander Feral signed his name in two of the opensquares then passed the paper back to Steele. “How much?”
“Ten dollars for the two squares.”
Commander Feral opened his wallet and gave Steele a tendollar bill.
“Is that all sir?” Steele asked.
“No, on your suspension take comp time. We’d rather not payyou time and a half for all of those hours you have saved up. That isall.” Commander Feral busied himself with some other papers on hisdesk.
Jake and Chance sat on a couple of reconditioned lawnchairs on the porch of their garage listening to the radio. It wasthe bottom of the hour and news had replaced the morning talk showthat had just been playing. Both looked uninterested in the task theyhad to perform, an inventory of the salvage yard for an environmentalimpact study.
“What do you think is out there Chance?”
“Yeah stuff but how much stuff?”
“A lot of stuff.”
“That really doesn’t help much Chance.”
“Sorry, haven’t you been keeping those papers that Burkeand Murry have been giving us?”
“Of course I have but they only tell us how many metrictons we’re getting it doesn’t say any thing about what the breakdownis. That we were supposed to do as it comes off the truck.”
“This is insane they can’t possibly expect us to figure outexactly what’s out there Feral would need to hire us assistants forthat.”
“Maybe we should sell it all. I bet we could get a fortunefor it with all that aluminum, iron and copper and who knows whatelse is out there.”
“Like that drum of toxic waste we got one time. I stuckthat over the hole that those damn raccoons were coming from.”
“That must be why those raccoons can chew through concretenow. Turn up the radio Chance they’re talking about last night.”
Chance turned up the radio, “And last night a riot brokeout in the Megakat City Octoberfest. It was believed to be caused bya microorganism that was introduce by Dr. Viper. The situation wasresolved when the SWAT Kats deluged the area with the contaminatedbeer. To recap, new threats to middle east peace may cause the greatpowers to intervene, its bad guys 0 SWAT Kats 16 billion as anotherattempt to take over the city goes down the drain and a bomb explodesin the mail room of the Steele building wounding several, oneseverely. Now back to the Emily Stern Show on . . .” Chance turnedthe radio down.
“Hey that crazy hippie kat is coming back from scavengingmore junk. We had better treat him nice maybe he’ll take it all withhim.” Chance said wishfully as they both got up.
The hippie kat had a truck load of parts from crashed jets.”I’ll take these parts guys.”
“All right I’ll just take a look and see what you’ve gotback here.” Jake opened the trucks tailgate and hopped in looking atthe things that the hippie kat was buying. He purchased a pilot’sseat, flaps for a wing, a front landing gear, a canopy and several’brains’ as well as other pieces of outer airplane hull. Jake wassomewhat mystified by what the kat was buying. “Okay you’ve got somepretty good airplane parts here we can let them go for a thousanddollars.” Jake jumped down to the ground.
“Sounds fair.” The hippie kat adjusted his thick glassesthen put his paw into his pocket and retrieved a bundle of onehundred dollar bills. He peeled off ten of them and handed them toJake.
“Just out of curiosity what are you going to do with thoseparts?” Jake pointed his thumb over his shoulder toward the truckbed.
“Oh, I’m creating an artwork ‘The Futility of Speed’ out ofaircraft parts. I hope that it will be shown at the modern art wingof the Megakat Museum.” The truck’s radio played a news report aboutthe failed bombing in the Steele Building. The hippie kat lookedsomewhat disappointed at the news. He climbed into the cab of thetruck, “Thanks for the stuff.”
“Hey no problem. Happy to help out” Jake waved as the truckspeed off.
“You know that is why I’m glad that the government nolonger funds the arts ‘Futility of Speed’ what a stupid thing.Instead we should be pushing to go faster.” Chance said as the truckturned onto the main road.
“He sure had some sophisticated stuff though. I wonder ifhe knows what he has there?” Jake counted five of the hundreds,”Here’s your share.”
“Isn’t this technically Feral’s money?”
“Yeah but if he finds out that we were declaring that stuffunrepairable and leaving it out there he’ll be even madder. We’resupposed to be salvaging that stuff y’know.”
The next morning Dr. Lieter Greenbox unlocked the door ofhis office and entered carrying a box with some research materials,behind him a graduate student walked in carrying letters and apackage. The office was littered with the trappings of academic life.Awards hung on the walls, papers were piled in every conceivableplace, where the floor was visible it looked as if it had not beenvacuumed in ages. The graduate student gingerly stepped in the openspaces pausing before a chair piled with magazines. She swept the oldscience journals off a chair and piled Greenbox’s mail there.
“Whoops I left that disk of information that Mr. Steelewanted in the car. Why don’t you start work while I go get it.” Dr.Greenbox said as he patted himself looking for the disk.
“Okay Dr. Greenbox I’ll start on your mail I’ve beenwanting to get at it for a couple of days now.”
Dr. Greenbox walked out into the hallway as he got to thestairs leading to the first floor he realized that he had forgottenhis car keys. Shaking his head he began walking back to his office.The door was still open and as he turned and faced it he was caughtin a tremendous explosion.
Greenbox picked himself up off the floor and looked at hisoffice again. Smoke poured out from the door papers were beginning toalight in any crazy order and the smell of explosives hung in theair. Alarms sounded throughout the building and people beganevacuating.
Another professor bounded out of his nearby office holdinghis notes. Turning to run to the stairwell to leave he saw Dr.Greenbox. “Lieter Your hurt!” The professor dropped his notes and ranto his colleague.
“Never mind me Holly’s in there.” Greenbox broke free ofthe other professor’s grip and entered his office. “Oh God”
The graduate student was lying on the floor unconscious.She was bruised, cut and her right paw was blown completely off butshe was alive.
The other professor followed Dr. Greenbox into the officelooked horrified at what he saw. “I’ll get a first aid kit.” Hedisappeared presumably to find a first aid kit.
“Hang on Holly help will be here soon.” He said picking upthe receiver of the phone it was dead, “Damn it!”
The other professor came back holding the first aid kit. Heopened it and began to work on the victim. Dr. Greenbox could notwatch he turned his head to look at the wall only to see the girl’spaw lying on some long forgotten paper. He got up and moved to hissmall refrigerator to get some ice. The freezer was empty but therefrigerator had a case of soft drinks. Greenbox grabbed the box thathad his research in it tossing in several cans of the drink. Hethen picked up the severed paw placing it on top of the cans thenplaced more cans on top of the paw. Then they waited for theparamedics to arrive.
Dr. Greenbox sat with a blanket over him. Even thought itwas a warm day he could not stop shaking. He was bandaged up andstill a little blackened from the smoke. Watching the EMS squad takeaway Holly and her paw was just too much for his nerves to bear.
“Try to calm down Dr. Greenbox.” Felina gave him a papercup of water, “We need to know what happened.”
Dr. Greenbox drank from the cup then spoke, “I don’t reallyknow what happened. I left my office to go get a disk and when I cameback the office blew up.”
“What was your graduate student doing as you left?” Felinaprobed.
“She was opening my mail.”
“Lieutenant Feral, there is a message for you it seemsanother bomb blew up at one of Steele’s construction sites.” One ofthe Lower ranking Enforcers handed her a piece of paper.
“Steele again? I might have to have a talk with LeslieSteele.”
“If you do can you give him this?” Dr. Greenbox gave herthe disk he was going to get when his office exploded.
Felina looked at the disk light reflected off it in arainbow pattern, “I definitely want to see him now.”
A lone figure peered out from behind a pile of brush thathad recently been cleared to make way for a road. What he saw was theburned out remains of a construction trailer and numerousconstruction workers laid out receiving care from paramedics on thescene. Two workers were injured badly enough to require beinglife-flighted out.
This brand of terrorism would not be likely to move LeslieSteele that would require something truly big. He backed away fromthe pile of brush: there was no need to get involved. He looked for astick suitable for walking then picked it up. As far as anyone neededto be concerned he was just a hiker out enjoying nature or at leastwhat was left of it. He started to walk for the foothills of theMegakat mountains.
Felina walked out of the elevator onto the SteeleBuilding’s 147th floor. She had heard of what was at the top of thistower but never really believed it, until now. The construction ofthe building was deliberately set up to impress and make diminutivethe visitor. It was working, Felina meekly walked up to the desk ofSteele’s personal secretary, “Lieutenant Felina Feral here to see Mr.Steele.”
The secretary said nothing as she looked at some computerfiles then turned to Felina, “You may go in he is expecting you.”
Felina walked to the doors turned the knob and walked intothe elder Steele’s office. What had been impressive before wassupplanted by what was in the office itself. Dark save for some lightthrown from two halogen torchiere lamps set to a very low level ofillumination. The curved face of the building offered a panoramicview of the city skyline except for the far left corner where theMegakat Tower had blocked out part of the view. On the right wall arow of bookcases held personal effects of a lifetime of work; awards,models of various things that Steele’s companies built, as well as amodel of the ‘Super Star Destroyer Executor’ that was lit up by fiberoptic wire. To the right of the doors she entered through, anautographed picture of Peter Cushing hung protected by a glasscovering. Felina began to admire the decor when a voice interruptedher, “I can’t talk to you from across the room. You will have to comecloser or leave.”
Felina was startled by the voice but began to walk towardsthe desk steeling up courage as she did so. She stopped at the deskhalting between two chairs as the elder Steele turned around in hischair. There were those who said that Leslie Steele did not havechildren but simply cloned himself. This of course was impossible allof his children were born before cloning a complex organism like akat was feasible. Felina was only familiar with the LieutenantCommander but she could say with certainty that aside from Leslie’sgray hair and a face that was beginning to show its sixty-eight yearsof age, they looked alike. “Do you have anything to say to me or areyou just going to look out the window?” the old kat asked Felinamistakenly thinking that she was gazing out the window.
“Oh yes Mr. Steele, may I?” She motioned to one of thechairs. Leslie motioned that she could sit down and she did so. “I’llbe brief. Do you have any information that could lead to who mighthave sent you the package bomb?”
“Any one I have at least a dollar more than, which iseveryone on Earth.” Leslie puffed up with pride “However if you wanta more specific answer, any number of the greenie groups that havebeen against my building projects. They have been trying to stop mynew housing development off the RWR for some time now. Claiming thatthere are some sort of religious artifacts out there, as if I careabout some gutter religion that no longer exists. If you ask me thatarea is nothing more than a bunch of ruined strawberry fields thatgot run over by tanks in the last war.”
Felina was unimpressed by Leslie’s diatribe against hisenemies but there was one question she still had to ask him, aboutthe disk Greenbox gave her. “What exactly is on this disk Dr.Greenbox wanted me to give to you?”
The old kat took one look at the disk in its casing set itdown and gave his answer. “That disk has the prototype for aconstruction robot that can optimize the building industry. Greenboxwas designing it as a joint venture between my company and Pershiadeveloping.”
Another robot that we’ll be fighting when it goes haywireFelina thought.
“Of course the design specs indicate that it will be tooexpensive to build, to make any kind of economic sense.” Lesliehanded the disk back to Felina, “Your evidence.”
Close call, Felina thought again as she took the disk back.”Thank you for taking the time to meet with me Mr. Steele.” Felinagot up from her chair Leslie did not do the same. She backed upunintentionally bowing slightly then turned and quickened her pace tothe doors. She turned back to look at the desk Leslie’s chair hadturned around and he resumed his watch out the window. Felina openedthe door and left without a sound.
The hippie kat marveled in his creation. It was amasterpiece, a full scale working model of a jet airplane. “Amazingwhat you can build from stuff in a scrap yard.” He chortled to no onein particular. A jet plane was worthless to him without bombs todrop. That he had created utilizing a witch’s brew of chemicals thatwere jelling in a vat in a building near his mountain cabin.
That chemical mixture was poured into small bomblets, thenthose were packed into a single larger canister. These types of bombswere known as Minelets excellent weapons for open targets likerunways, oil equipment or construction sites. Soon, very soon hewould take his fight to a new level.
Fully loaded his plane taxied onto an abandoned highway.The highway was a minor east west route whose connections were cutwhen a bridge over a canyon was blown twenty years ago to preventrebel soldiers from crossing, two tanks still sat there as artifactsfrom that time. When the Megakat dam was constructed the othersection of road was flooded out. Unwittingly these two unconnectedevents created a runway sometimes used by fisherkats with pilot’slicenses but now it was used by him.
The plane’s jet engines droned into the twilight It wastime for a late night test of both his flying and bombingcapabilities. He smiled as he adjusted his visor. It was hooked intothe plane’s navigation and control systems it also compensated forhis poor eyesight. They had tried to take his sight away all thoseyears ago but now he had the power to return the favor.
He pushed the planes throttle to full power and releasedthe brake the plane lurched into action rolling down the road towardthe tanks. He lifted off just prior to where the tanks were sitingraised the gear and plotted a course in the direction of MegakatCity. ************************************************************************
Callie fiddled with her keys trying to remember which oneopened the door to her new house. She had moved from a smaller housenear the city center that she had bought after winning her firstelection to city council to this castle off Megakat City’s newouterbelt. She had as a first termer voted against the Ronald WilsonReagan Memorial Outerbelt believing that the more than three billiondollars would be better spent fixing already worn roads in the cityinstead of building an eight lane highway on scrubland on the veryoutskirts of the city. How naive, roads do not go where they areneeded they go where billionaire developers want them to.
Twenty five years ago irrigation works made this thestrawberry capital of America. War ran off the farmers who sold outcheap to Leslie Steele now he was developing the land at an enormousprofit mostly for himself. Callie didn’t like Leslie Steele, no onereally did but he had the money so he made the rules there was notmuch anyone could do about that. An explosion gave her reason to looktowards the new construction site. A mushroom cloud of fire rose overthe nearby construction equipment and building supplies.
Callie looked up as a jet plane roared overhead she was notan expert on planes but knew enough to get by. This one had a rigidwingspan like the Enforcer jets but was somewhat larger with bombbays. The plane was pointed like the Turbokat though with twinengines between twin tails. Callie did not know this kat’s problembut he did seem to have an attitude.
Callie reached into her purse fumbling for thecommunicator. Finding it she depressed the activator and called outto the SWAT Kats.************************************************************************
Chance lay asleep on the deck over the garage when he heardthe klaxon sound. Waking with a start he spilled the mostly emptyinventory log book onto the floor. He stood suddenly realizing thathis left leg was still asleep and was forced to stumble awkwardly toa nearby phone. Rubbing life back into his leg he answered, “What canwe do for you Ms. Briggs?”
“We’ve got big problems guys. Some wacko just bombed aconstruction site out here by the new outerbelt and the old ImperialHighway. The Enforcers have been called but I’d feel a lot better ifyou were there too.”
“Roger that Ms. Briggs, we’re on our way.” Chance hung upthe phone, now where was Jake? He looked out the window, Jake wasoutside sitting at a table with a cash box talking to a kat who worea burnoose.
Chance walked up to Jake who was arguing about the priceof three 500kg bombs with the kat with the burnoose. Behind him wereseveral other kats one who looked zoned on something, a second wholooked like some kind of computer geek dressed in a red shirt andblue jeans, a couple both dressed in green suits, another who wore alab coat, and another that was large, tall and who periodicallyeither talked to or hit the bulges in his pockets.
“1500 dollars is not outrageous, it’s one dollar akilogram.” Jake said as he leaned back on the chair. “Listen Ahmedtake it or leave it but that’s as low as I’m going.”
“Jake I need to talk to you.”
“Not now Chance I’m conducting business.”
“What are you talking about?”
Chance grabbed Jake by the collar of his coveralls anddragged him toward the garage, “Sorry folks the store is closed comeback some other time.”
The line of kats groaned. The big tall one that looked kindof like Darkkat and also sounded kind of like Darkkat threatened totake his business elsewhere.
“Chance you just blew a golden opportunity to make a fewbucks.” Jake got out between gags.
“Yeah, but while you were playing merchant of death Calliecalled. some nut case bombed a construction site by the newouterbelt. She wants us to help out.”
“All right, fine, but I can walk to the hanger without yourhelp Chance.”************************************************************************
The Turbokat roared out of the tunnel into the sky. TheSWAT Kats passed two Enforcer helicopters slowly advancing in thesame general direction that they were going. The construction sitereveled no trace of the aircraft but did display in graphic detailthe destruction he caused. “Well here’s the construction site.Where’s the bad guy?” T-Bone wondered looking at two downedhelicopters.
“I’ve got him on radar flying at 500 meters about threekilometers east of here near the river.” Razor replied looking at theTurbokat’s instrument panel trying to choose what missile to bringthis clown down with.
The bogie maintained a steady course toward the newfreeway’s bridge over the Megakat River. The plane released a bombthat followed its laser site to the bridge. The bomb explodedobliterating the center span of the bridge sending chunks of steel,concrete and asphalt flying.
“All right no one blows up a bridge in this town and getsaway with it. I’m going to take this sucker down. Cookie Cutterdeployed!” Razor shouted to the kat in the other plane.
The hippie kat’s plane sounded an enemy missile warning. Heflipped on the counter measures hoping to jam the missile’s radar butthe missile maintained a lock. “I’ll have to go low tech.” The hippiekat thought as he ejected a chaff to confuse the radar signature ofhis plane.
The chaff exploded and the SWAT Kats’ missile traveledthrough the aluminum dust momentarily blinding it. This allowed thehippie kat to escape its field of vision.
“This guy’s good T-Bone, he really knows how to block amissile.”
“Yeah, well he can’t fly too good. He should have closed ina tighter loop to get out of the missile’s view. Then he would havebeen in position to blast us. Instead he’s a tempting target, if youcan hit him sureshot.”
“I’ve got him and this time He’s not getting . . . Now whatthe hell is he doing?” Razor yelped as the target changed course andturned on a collision course at top speed.
“He’s going to hit us, shot him!” T-Bone yelled in panic.
“With what? I don’t have anything that will arm in thatshort a space T-Bone.”
The hippie kat did though and he released a missile thenmade a sharp turn towards the still standing westbound section of theouterbelt bridge. The missile armed itself then exploded when it cameinto proximity with the Turbokat scattering shrapnel that flew intothe Turbokat’s engine intakes and cockpit canopy. The junk caused oneengine to flame out and the other two to be slightly damaged. Thecanopy was pitted with cracks.
While the Turbokat was licking its wounds, the hippie katsplane turned to make another bombing run on the bridge over theMegakat River. The westbound bridge was still standing but not forlong. Switching pylons the hippie kat prepared to drop another laserguided bomb.
“Turn around T-Bone, we have to try to stop this nut beforehe hurts somebody.”
“Hurts _somebody_ what about us? We’re banged up pretty badyou know.” T-Bone turned the jet toward the opposing plane anyway.
“Don’t worry I’ve got him this time, Buzz saw missiledeployed!”
The hippie kat released a laser guided bomb at the bridgejust before his missile warning alarms began to sound. Two of theSWAT Kats Buzz Saw missiles were locked on to his plane. It wasdecision time, either stay on course and be destroyed or waste a bomband flee. The hippie kat decided to flee he was already sure of hisabilities to hit a target, now he would brush up on his dog fightingskills.
Disengaging from the bombing run the hippie kat dropped achaff as he made a sharp right turn. One of the Buzz Saw missiles wasfooled lost the lock then reacquired it on the bomb. It zeroed inthen cut off the bomb’s tail fins. The bomb fell crazily hitting thefar left lane of the bridge exploding out ward. Parts of two otherlanes buckled and fell into the river effectively leaving only oneusable lane though the bridge’s superstructure remained sound. Thesecond Buzz Saw missile was able to reacquire a lock on the hippiekat’s plane striking the airframe. A small trail of smoke andhydraulic fluid poured out of the opening.
Enraged the hippie kat turned to blast the Turbokat withhis machine guns. Only to be scared off by two Enforcer jets on arapid approach. The Hippie turned fleeing toward the MegakatMountains faster than the Enforcers could keep up with him.
The SWAT Kats needed a place to put down. the nearest placewith a good flat surface was the construction site that had just beenbombed. The Turbokat settled on the construction site away from theburned hulks of equipment that littered the area and burning gelatinfrom the bomblets that still flared in scattered places.
Razor hopped out of the cockpit when the Turbokat toucheddown inspecting the engine intakes and engines, shaking his head ashe did so. “We took some serious damage buddy. Number two engine isblown, number one is damaged. Hull has numerous piercings, looks likeseveral hydraulic lines have been severed.”
“What’s the prognosis Razor? How long will it be before wecan fly again?” T-Bone joined him on the ground.
“A couple of hours at least even then it will only be juryrigged. We’re in for some overtime working on the jet T-Bone.”
“Speaking of working overtime here comes Commander Feral”T-Bone crossed his arms and leaned against the Turbokat as Feral’shelicopter landed, disgorging the commander.
The commander walked with the haughty air of a kat that hadjust caught his prey his commander’s baton was clenched tightly inhis fist. “I always knew you hot shots would end up on the wrong sideof the law. You’re under arrest for vandalizing this constructionsite and disrupting a public service.”
“Back off Feral we didn’t do it.” T-Bone started.
“Yeah the real bad guy is getting away.” Razor continued.
“Not only that he shot up our plane, we want to presscharges.” T-Bone added figuring that even Feral could not be so denseas to miss the truth right in front of his eyes.
“They’re right commander there was another plane outtonight. I saw it with my own eyes.” Deputy Mayor Briggs had beenwatching with amusement as Feral had to back away from his contentionthat it was the fault of the SWAT Kats.
“Uncle what’s going on?” Felina ran up to her uncle, “Whywas I called out here?”
“I don’t know I didn’t call for you.” Commander Feralanswered.
A black limousine pulled into the construction sitestopping in front of the arguing group. They all feel silent as oneof the rear windows slid down. “Lieutenant Feral, may I speak withyou, in the car?” Leslie Steele called out calmly.
Felina gulped slowly opening the car door and sliding intothe seat she closed it behind her and the window slid closed.
The air conditioner chilled the air to what felt almostuncomfortable for Felina. She situated herself in the seat acrossfrom Mr. Steele and Dr. Greenbox. “You’re probably wondering why Ihad my son call you out here.” Mr. Steele said matter of factly toFelina
“I thought there would be a reason for it.” She said voicewavering at the end.
“Yes Lieutenant, Dr. Greenbox and I have discussed thissituation and we may have found a solid link between himself, myselfand these other bombings. Doctor.”
Dr. Greenbox cleared his throat then began, “The commonthread between the bombings is a trace residue from a the bombblasts. It is a previously untested explosive compound that can haveits force regulated by the percentage of relatively inert compoundsadded to it. This explosive was worked on by a professor of mine who.. .”
“This professor was aligned with a lot of the greeniegroups. Just prior to the war he was part of a protest againstsalvage logging in national forests, that resulted in the occupationof a congresskat’s local office. The local police swabbed CayennePepper Spray directly onto their eyes.” Leslie Steele chuckled tohimself. “The professor, a Theodore Katcynski, had an extremelysevere reaction to the spray that resulted in major damage to hiseyes and a lawsuit that he won. He disappeared into the mountainsabove Megakat City with his money and tends to keep to himself.”
“How exactly do we know that this Katcynski is the culprit.This form of bombing campaign is significantly different from what wewere investigating.” Felina noted the burning wreckage outside thatused to be a construction site.
“He is an environmental wacko against any kind ofimprovement of the living standards of katkind. He is willing to useany method to strike at encroaching civilization and by extension me.His method of delivery has changed but his motive remains the same. Iam sure that if you investigate the residue traces you will see thatthe explosive is the same.”
“All right where is this fruitcake we’ll go investigatehim.”
“Some where in the Megakat mountains.”
“Where in the Megakat Mountains? They stretch into thejurisdiction of the state of Katlifornia. We can’t do anythingthere.”
“Then coordinate with the Katlifornia Enforcers. It is notimportant who has bragging rights over his capture but only that heis stopped before he does something rash like blow up a nuclear plantor something. He would not have switched to using a jet airplaneunless he planned something big.”
“What do you think is going on in there?” Commander Feralasked as he and the others looked at the extremely tinted windows ofthe car.
“I bet he’s mad about his construction site being blownup.” Razor commented also looking at the darkened window.
“Maybe he’s crushing her throat from across the car withjust the power of his mind.” T-Bone drew an analogy.
“Or zapping her with blue lightning.” Callie made one ofher own.
Felina stepped out of the car the door closed behind herand the limousine speed off. “What did he say to you?” CommanderFeral questioned his niece.
“Just that we should take a look at an environmentalnutcase known as Theodore Katcynski.”
It had been a marvelous strike. Complete destruction of aconstruction site and a test of his ability to drop bombs from a jetairplane. His skill as a pilot was lacking but the bombings indicatedthat he was satisfactory for the task he had in store. He walked to amap of Megakat City that was tacked to the wall and stabbed his clawat Megakat Dam a huge hydroelectric and water reservoir complex thatkept the city lighted and watered. Building it however floodedMegakat Canyon an area that once was of preeminent beauty but now wasjust lake bed.
Not for long, he thought as he took off his glasses andrubbed his eyes. He gazed at the two new bombs he was working on theywere armor tipped to give them a better penetration. Soon they wouldhave rocket motors installed on their tails to give them an extrapush into the dam’s reinforced concrete structure. Within a day thewicked Megakat City with its skyscrapers, asphalt roads and carswould be wiped out, replaced with a natural alluvial delta. That wasif the plane was in working order the SWAT Kats had proven more thana match for his technical know-how.
He however could not attempt to destroy the city in a day;it would take a week if everything went according to plan just to getthe parts from the salvage yard. Those two stupid mechanics wouldbecome wise to him if he attempted to bring out too much stuff atonce.
Two days later the hippie kat made his appearance at thesalvage yard. He had been fortunate the damage to the landing gearwas minimal. The gear itself would not have to be replaced only a fewhydraulic lines. It would be easier to avoid suspicion by not havingto buy a gear. Aside from two used guided missile shells that sat inthe back of his truck today’s components, hydraulic lines andcomputer boards, would fit in a shoe box.
The two mechanics looked over every item that he was tryingto purchase scrutinizing every last detail. This gave the hippie kata moment of panic but that subsided when the smaller of the twoannounced, “Everything looks in order, we’ll part with it for twohundred dollars.”
The hippie kat smiled, “Sounds fair.” He pulled out his wadof one hundreds giving two to the smaller of the two kats who took itgreedily. Not wanting to stick around he hopped into his truck andspeed away.
“Well I guess we can cross him off the list of potentialsuspects Chance. That junk isn’t worthy of being on a plane.”
“It was worth a shot Jake, I’m sure that the screwball isbuying from this salvage yard.”
“We’ve looked at everything sold, checked ID’s, made noteof every purchase of something noteworthy and still we’ve come upempty. This wild goose chase has even made it difficult for us to doany appreciable work on fixing up the Turbokat.” Jake’s voice wasraised and his anger was directed at Chance.
“Sorry Jake, listen why don’t you get your mind off of thisand I’ll stay out of your hair by watching the yard OK.?” Chancedhoped that, that would calm his perturbed partner.
“Yeah I guess your right. Listen I’m sorry I over reactedit’s just that I’ve, we’ve been under a lot of stress lately.”Remorse replaced the anger in Jake’s voice. They both began to walktoward the garage.
Later that evening Chance was cleaning up after having madehimself dinner. The usual gang of malcontent journalists was showingjust how immature they could be on the ‘Megakat Group’. This was oneof Jake’s favorite shows so Chance was surprised when he failed tocome up and watch it.
“Hey Jake aren’t you ever going to come up? You’re missingthe ‘Megakat Group’” Chance called down the ladder to the hanger.
Much to his surprise Jake emerged at the bottom of theladder, “How much did I miss?”
“Not much, although I think Ann Gora and Eleanor Katz areabout ready to go for each other’s jugulars.”
“And to think I nearly missed it. Thank you for smallmiracles.”
“Speaking of small miracles how’s the Turbokat?”
“I repaired the engines and intakes and replaced thecanopy. No mean feat when you consider that the Turbokat parts arenot exactly factory ready but we’re going to have to be carefulreplacement parts are at a minimum. So we need to be sure that theTurbokat is completely tested before we go into combat again.”
“So a desert test run is in order.” Chance rubbed his pawswith anticipation.
“Any test run we make should take it easy on the jetChance. In fact I will be doing diagnostic tests and we’ll be flyingwithout ordinance.”
“I’m not sure I like the idea of flying without weaponsJake, it makes us sitting ducks.”
“Chance we have to test the new parts in those engines andputting undue strain on them now could damage them further. If thathappens we won’t have the parts to fix them.” To underscore his pointJake turned to the television and ceased talking.
As the sun broke over Megakat City the Turbokat rose out ofthe salvage yard circled once then flew off to the east. The SWATKats flew low passing Megakat International Airport until they flewover the RWR outerbelt where they could clear the airport’s approachvectors. Turning north they set course for their desert test run.
The hippie kat felt no need to go through such formalities.His plane was ready for take off and fully loaded with what he wouldneed to accomplish his task. Two bays of laser guided bombs, one of’Durandal’ type anti-runway bombs and one of air to air missiles justin case anyone wanted to challenge his plan.
He taxied his plane onto the section of abandoned highwaypushing the throttle to full. The jet plane rolled down the roadtoward the demolished bridge and the rusted tanks that were now weresilent sentinels succumbing to the rot of time. The hippie kat’splane roared over the tanks and into the valley toward the MegakatRiver Reservoir.
The plane picked up speed as it banked out of the valleyand flew over the reservoir. The water reflected the blue of the skyand the shimmer of the rising sun. Vacation houses and beach frontlodges clung to the shores. A few pleasure boats dotted the area someof which had all ready decided to catch some of the trout that wereplentiful in the lake. The crowds were light it was after all aWednesday and most people would be at work and would be drowned whenthe lake came crashing down on them.
The hippie kat was not going to concern himself with theirplight he could now see the dam, the concrete barrier that preventedthe free flow of the Megakat River. He banked his plane toward acanyon in a west south west direction. He would bypass the dam andcome around from down stream. He switched to the LGB pylon and pushedthe throttle forward a bit more, now was the time.
The Megakat Dam’s control room was continually lit up withindicator lights and monitors. The dam supplied almost all of MegakatCity’s water, everything from drinking water to mall fountains. Inaddition to that hydroelectric generators supplied a large portion ofthe city’s electrical demand. Lastly the lake behind the dam hadturned out to be a tourist attraction giving a decided boost toinland fishing and other activities. Keeping watch over all of thatwere six attendants and a supervisor.
“Anyone know what happened to the pool for next Saturday’sUKMC Vs Arkatsas? I’m thinking of putting a few bucks down.” One ofthe attendants engaged in a little small talk with his coworkers.
“Why would you waste your money on a crap shoot like thatjust give it to me.” One of the other attendants growled angrily
The chief engineer looked up from the clipboard that hehad writing energy and water statistics on. “Somebody has to win andall the money gets paid out not like a bookie that keeps some forhimself.”
Another attendant looked away from his monitor just in timeto miss a jet air plane on a bombing run flying up the canyon.” Itwould be nice if I was that somebody sometime. . .” the room shookslightly and the lights blinked off then on again.
“What was that?” The chief engineer asked.
“I don’t know.” One of the attendants answered.
The chief engineer grabbed a telephone receiver, “This iscontrol what just happened?”
A somewhat stunned guard answered, “It was a jet planethat dropped a bomb on us. It dimpled the dam from an area just belowthe water line up to the road up top. You had better release somewater or we might have a breech.”
“Yes thank you for the heads up. Please call theEnforcers.” The chief engineer hung up the phone.
“Start releasing water, part of the dam has beencompromised if the flow is controlled we may be able to stave off aworse crisis. I’m going to see the mayor it may be necessary toevacuate the city.” The supervisor turned to the elevator and pressedthe call button then turned, “Do every thing you can to save the citybut if worst comes to worst save yourselves.”
Commander Feral walked into the mayor’s office carrying hiscommander’s baton in one paw and a piece of paper in the other. Hedreaded what he knew awaited him when Manx and Callie would expect ananswer as to why the enforcers had not engaged the threat en masse.
In the office Manx was hyperventilating Callie was composedbut clearly worried. “Feral!” Mayor Manx squalled, “You have to dosomething. That fruitcake is going to destroy my ci-tay.”
“Fear not Mr. Mayor right now three of my finest pilots areon their way to engage this threat.” Feral did not even believehimself.
“Three Commander? Why not more?” Callie asked incredulous.
“Because of this.” Commander Feral muttered as he held outthe paper he was carrying.
Callie took the paper, “I don’t believe it.” She remarkedwith shock.
“What is it Callie? What does it say?” Mayor Manx startedhopping like an unruly child.
“It’s a court injunction taken out by Katco PetroleumCompany against the Megakat City Enforcers for failure to properlypay their fuel bill. Legally they can’t pump any gas.” Callie readfrom the paper.
“Or jet fuel or aviation fuel. Our whole force is groundedexcept for what we have in the vehicle’s fuel tanks.” Commander Feralfilled in more bad news.
“We’re doomed, we’re doomed.” Mayor Manx concluded.
“Is this the Mayor’s office?” a new voice entered the room.It was the chief engineer at the dam looking as though he had run allthe way from the dam.
“Yes it is who are you?” Callie said to the profuselysweating kat.
“I’m Arthur Wasser, the chief engineer at the dam. I calledabout the attack and the need to take emergency measures, whichincidentally don’t seem to be happening. I saw cars still headinginto the city on my helicopter flight in. Those cars should be turnedthe other way around.”
“The need to take such drastic measures is not necessary.My Enforcers can handle this environmental low life. Even in theirtruncated state.” He still tried to put the best face on a disasterwaiting to happen.
“You don’t understand what is going to happen if that dambursts. Here let me show you.” The supervisor put a tape into a VCRand pushed play. The television showed an animation of Megakat Citywith the dam. It then removed the dam allowing all the water in thereservoir to spill out. The water rushed down the canyons into thebowl of land that Megakat City sat in. It obliterated every thing inits path; sprawling suburbs, roads and bridges even the downtownskyscrapers collapsed from its onslaught. That was the highlight ofan educational tape that turns budding young hydrologists intokat-nip sniffing slackers. The chief engineer stopped further play ofthe tape and ejected it. Turning back to the assembled kats he said,”Now do you see the problem?”
Mayor Manx understood perfectly he returned to his desk andcalmly began writing his will.
Callie was more pragmatic, “I think its time we startedevacuating the city.”
“At least give my Enforcers the opportunity to shot thisguy down Briggs. We can’t start a panic, a lot of people could gethurt if we try to evacuate the city.”
“A lot of people could be killed if we don’t Feral.”
“All right, I’ll get the civil defense measures ready.”Commander Feral picked up the phone and dialed his secretary’snumber.
“Commander Feral’s office this is Robin how may I helpyou?”
“Robin patch me through to Lieutenant Commander Steele.”
“He’s not here you suspended him for the day, with pay.”She emphasized the last part.
“Oh yeah that’s right, how about Lt. Comdr. Pawdling?”
“He called in sick sir.”
“What about Riesenbaum?”
“He’s in Chikatgo attending a conference.”
“Are there any lieutenant commanders around?”
“I think Winthorpe is around somewhere but I don’t knowwhere he is, probably looking for a way to grow hair on his head.”
“Can you just connect me with some one up there I don’tcare if it’s the janitor.”
The phone line muted then Commander Feral heard ringing,”At last.”
“Damn it Robin, I didn’t mean it literally. This is Feralis there anyone in charge up there I really need to contact someone.”
The phone muted again then started ringing, “Training labthis is Reich.”
“It’s about time. Listen go into my office and open themiddle drawer of my desk. There’s a Scardykat key ring in there getit and go to the sub basement. There is a vault down there open itwith the key and pick up the civil defense plan EP-G. Take that up tothe communications tower and stand by.
Lieutenant Feral pushed her jet as fast as it would go. Sheknew that the events that were keeping the terrorist from having aneasy time of bombing the dam would not hold him off forever. Trickycross winds stopped his second run and the arrival of two Enforcerhelicopters stopped a third. The terrorist would learn to compensatefor the winds and the helicopters were more of a nuisance than athreat to him. That is what the jet was needed for, to shot him down.
The Enforcer jet roared up the canyon towards the dam andthe target it would engage. The two helicopters rose out of harm’sway giving the hostile aircraft a clear shot at the dam.
This was exactly what the Enforcers wanted the enemy tothink let him line up his shot then while he was concentrating, blasthim in the ass. Felina had a lock on him and she loosed a missilethat immediately homed in on the hippie kat’s exhaust plumes.
The alarms in the hippie kat’s jet gave him plenty ofwarning that a threat was approaching. Again he would have to delay abombing run. Not to worry though he could just pop up a side canyon,finish off the troublesome Enforcer and resume his attack. Droppingflares the hippie kat banked right into the side canyon.
The SWAT Kats were through with their desert test run andhad moved to a more challenging course, a canyon test run. T-Bone wasunwilling to press the Turbokat too far not wanting to incur Razor’swrath. The engines however were performing beautifully and thishelped to put Razor in a very good mood.
“Chance take the Turbokat out of the canyon by the dam. Wecan fly down river to the desert then fly back to the hanger. We willhave to do some minor tinkering on the engines but we can have theTurbokat back in service by tomorrow.” Razor sounded pleased thetests had come back better than he had hoped. He had even used thepronoun we indicating that his self imposed isolation was over.
T-Bone flew down the canyon towards the main chasm only tocome face to face with the hippie kat’s jet.
“What the?” T-Bone gasped as he turned hard to avoid theoncoming aircraft.
“That’s that screwball who shot us up T-Bone! What’s hedoing here?”
“Never mind him, missile incoming!” T-Bone shouted as hetook evasive action increasing thrust to get out of the narrowconfines of the canyon.
“Releasing flares!” Razor was regretting that they didn’teven have a minimum of ordnance, now he really could use a decoymissile.
The Turbokat cleared the canyon walls; T-Bone eased thethrottle down to almost stall speed to reduce the thermal signature.With Razor unsure of the condition that the engines were in T-Bonewas unwilling to attempt ‘Plan Z’. It went all for the better theEnforcer missile followed the brilliant flares instead of theTurbokat’s exhaust plumes. “Whew, we got lucky there Razor. Sorry’bout the strain on the engines ‘though”
“Never mind, if that missile had hit us it would have beenworse.”
“Sorry about that SWAT Kats. Did you see my target go byhere.” Felina queried the still rattled kats.
“Yeah your bogie went down that canyon to the right.” Razorsaid.
“Yeah we just missed him.” T-Bone joked.
Felina turned her jet down the canyon after the kat in theplane. The Enforcer helicopters passed the Turbokat flying down thecanyon to again engage the attacking aircraft.
The mayor’s office had lost any sense of decorum. CommanderFeral was still attempting to gain control over the Enforcers. MayorManx had apparently fainted though he continued to hug his golfclubs. Lower level city employees were running in and out of theoffice delivering messages and answering telephones. The chiefengineer of the dam watched as Callie examined the city charter in anattempt to prove that she had authority over the situation.
“What do you mean that you’re not ready yet? You’ve hadhalf an hour to assemble them.”
“Sorry sir but without vehicles its taking a little bit oftime we’re copying the forms to allow them to pay for gas out oftheir own pockets.”
“I don’t care if you have to send them out on horseback,just do it.”
“That would be kind of hard sir. We disbanded all mountedunits last year because we couldn’t afford to pay for food for bothhorses and dogs so one had to go.’
“What happened to the horses?”
“We sold them.”
“To whom?” Commander Feral felt a knot in the pit of hisstomach.
“Some nearby national parks bought most of them and therest were bought by breeders.”
“Whew!” Commander Feral sighed, “At least we won’t getangry letters.”
Commander Feral’s feeling of relief was short lived forCallie walked up to him with the city charter. “It says right hereFeral, that ‘when the mayor is under duress that the deputy mayor hasauthorization to act in his behalf.’” Callie pointed to the clause inthe city charter delineating that.
“It doesn’t matter Briggs we don’t have the ability tosupervise an evacuation. Besides for you to take over the mayor wouldhave to be under duress and Mayor Manx looks just fine to me.”
Callie looked at commander Feral like he was insane. “Looksjust fine to you, for God’s sake Feral he has passed out from theexcitement and before that he was talking to his golf clubs.”
“I contend that, that is normal behavior for Mayor Manx.”Feral stated the obvious. “That leaves me in charge.” He pointed tothe clause in the charter that backed his contention.
“Feral that is the most stupid thing I have heard you sayin a long time.” Callie responded to his statement. “And where doesit say that in the charter.”
“Right here in the part that was translated from theoriginal Spanish. Next to where it says that as chief constable I’msupposed to get,” Feral turned the page, ” one chicken per month.”
Callie started leafing through her copy of the charter. “Asdeputy viceroy I’m supposed to get,” Callie looked for what goodiesshe was entitled to, “four Nubian slaves per annum?”
“Have you gotten your slaves, because I haven’t gotten mychickens?”
“Wait a minute commander. If these perks are still in thecharter and they haven’t been disbursed for the past 300 years whathappened to the money that is budgeted for them?”
“I don’t know.”
“If we find out I bet we will have enough money to pay foryour fuel.”
Felina flew out of the canyon after the hippie kat whoseplane was over the Megakat River. “He’s going to fly up the rivercanyon. Blast him when he comes within range.” Felina radioed out toher comrades in the helicopters.
The two Enforcer helicopters moved into position weaponsready. They sighted in the hippie kat’s plane only to hear their ownmissile warning alarms go off.
The hippie kat launched a missile that began activelytargeting one of the helicopters then a few seconds later launchedanother one that targeted the second helicopter.
Despite heroic efforts to jam the missile the helicopterswere simply not fast or maneuverable enough to avoid the missiles.The first helicopter tried releasing flares and chaff to interruptthe missile’s tracking but the missile did not lose lock. Thehelicopter exploded into a large fire ball and its crew would not begoing home to their families. The crew of the second helicopter faredbetter. Sensing impending doom when their radar lock alarms sounded.They moved a hundred meters back to a point where they were over theriver. When the missiles came they bailed out into the river escapingwith bruises, cuts and their lives.
Felina watched as the helicopters were shot down withouther even being able to lend a helping paw. She cursed the hippie katas she pushed the throttle forward determined to catch up to him andshove a missile up his ass. She glanced at the fuel meter. Itsreading indicated that she had a little less than half of the plane’sfuel capacity left. If she continued consuming fuel at this rate theplane would exhaust its fuel supply in only a couple more passes. Shehad to make this shot count especially since there would not be anyrefueling at base.
The hippie kat must have sensed her approach because hespeed up as well. This is going to require some help thought Felina.”SWAT Kats are you there, over?”
“Roger, what do you need Lieutenant?” T-Bone asked.
“A little help. That nut’s plane is simply faster than mineI can’t get a lock on him.”
“The best we can do is run interference. We don’t have anyweapons on board to fight with.” Razor said.
“No weapons, what did you come out here for, to get blownaway?” Felina asked in disbelief realizing that her help was notgoing to be much help.
“Well we hadn’t planned on getting into a fight we werejust out to test the engines when we got caught up in this.” Razoranswered back.
“Listen I hate to interrupt our little conversation buthere comes the bad guy.” T-Bone growled into the microphone as heturned the Turbokat to face the hippie kat in the canyon.
The hippie kat flew up the canyon faster than he wanted to.Unfortunately it was necessary to keep ahead of the Enforcer pilotwho was trailing him. It was easy to outrun the Enforcers butdropping the bomb at this speed would be a more tricky matter.
His train of thought was interrupted when the Turbokatappeared. He instinctively throttled back and dived cursing the SWATKats for interference. No matter the dam still awaited, he leveledout the plane and resumed course. He set his sights on the dam justas infra-red warning alarms began to sound.
The hippie kat grimaced, it was now or never. He selectedhis infra-red jammers and then opened the bomb bay doors, activatingthe targeting laser. It would be only a few seconds more until hecould drop the LGB. As the Enforcer missile approached, he droppedthe bomb, then released flares in the hopes of confusing the missile.
The missile was not impressed it continued tracking theplane instead of the flares until the bomb hit the dam and exploded.The missile’s internal guidance lost track of the hippie kat’s planeturned toward a flare then arced toward the explosion at the damadding its explosive force.
This was something the dam could do without. The irony ofthe situation was not lost on the hippie kat who cheered this turn ofevents as he flew over the dam, bomb bay doors still open.
An irate guard took the opportunely to take a few pot shotsat the hippie kat’s plane as it passed over his position. It was auseless gesture on his part a sidearm could do little damage to a jetairplane could it?
For the SWAT Kats now was not the time for uselessgestures. The dam was about to burst they had to shore it up. Withoutthe need to converse the SWAT Kats swung into action. The one weaponthat they did have was their cement machine gun. They splattered thedamaged portion of the dam with the sticky goo effectively holding ittogether, at least temporarily.
The chief engineer walked out of the elevator just as theEnforcer missile exploded against the dam jarring everyone in thecontrol room. The lights blinked as the engineer strode toward hiscrew, “How is the dam holding up?”
“What are you doing here sir?” the first attendant askedhis boss.
“The city leaders aren’t listening, we have to drop thelevel of the reservoir or we’re going to lose the dam.” He brieflychecked the monitors then turned back to his crew, “In order to savethis city we are going to have to open the emergency tubes. I want torelease 1,500 cubic meters per second to relieve stress on the damand insure that the city won’t be destroyed.”
“Sir we can’t put that much water through those tubes. evenif we open them manually the over rides will kick in closing themoff.” A second attendant said as he stood up from his position.
“That is why I’ll be staying here, now every one saveyourselves and get out.” The chief engineer sat at the control panelbeginning procedures to open the emergency tubes. “Go on get out ofhere!”
“You’ll never be able to keep all those tubes open at oncesir. We’ll help.” Three attendants stood before the open door of theelevator.
The chief engineer looked back at the assembled crew andsmiled, “Well then don’t just stand there get to work.”
Mayor Manx regained consciousness soon after an accountspayable clerk made his appearance in the mayor’s office. The clerkcarried a portfolio of stocks and bonds that had been invested overthe years. He settled behind a computer that would provide him withthe relevant information for his presentation. Commander Feral,Deputy Mayor Briggs and Mayor Manx crowded around him.
“How much money do we have in this account?” Callie wantedto know.
“First I want to tell you a story. When the Dutch boughtKathattan Island from the Indians they paid the equivalent of 24dollars for it. If that had been invested at a rate of return of 6percent today those same Indians could buy Kathattan back with moneyto spare.” Callie, Commander Feral and Manx were all smiles each ofthem was thinking of ways to spend this new windfall, “Unfortunatelythe Indians and Megakat City must have had the same investmentconsultant.”
Their smiles vanished, “What are you saying?” Callie asked.
“That these investments are almost worthless. I mean justlook at what they’ve invested in; slave trade stocks, Mexgatian warbonds from the Mexgatian war, Confederate bonds from the 1861 to 1865Civil War, 50,000 shares of stock in the Congo Free State RailwayCompany for a railroad that was never built, Ottokat Turkish warbonds from Mega War II. . .”
“All right you’ve made your point. So there is nothing ofvalue in this account.” Commander Feral interrupted.
“Not exactly the last caretaker of this account boughtFillip-Morris and other tobacco company stocks. Worth all told alittle more than one and a half million dollars. Plus there is about200,000 dollars in cash.”
“That would be just enough to pay off your bill Feral.”Callie imputed.
“Would you like me to sell the stocks?” The clerk asked.
“Mr. Mayor?” Callie turned to Mayor Manx.
“Yes, of course, sell it!” Mayor Manx said with a raresense of determination.
Without a word the clerk began typing pausing while thecomputer was selling the stock. Seconds later the screen flashed’sold for $1,506,439.90.’ “Done deal, the account now holds$1,698,021.76.” The clerk said not even looking up from the screen.
“Transfer that to Katco Petroleum so we can pay our bill.”Commander Feral pushed Mayor Manx out of the way.
The clerk began to type again. “How much is the bill forcommander?”
Commander Feral fumbled with the Katco bill, “Uh, it’s$1,650,470.22.”
“OK” The clerk entered the amount in, “Yes.” He pushed the’Y’ key sending the funds. They all held their breath for a momentwhile the transaction processed itself. Finally a window popped upsaying ‘Payment received. Thank you for choosing Katco Petroleum.’Callie and Mayor Manx hugged briefly then shook paws. Commander Feralwas more reserved cracking a smile as he pumped his left paw andslapped the back of the clerk’s chair with his right.
For Felina her uncle’s efforts were too little too late.After the hippie kat hit the dam a third time he disappeared into acanyon. Without an airborne early warning and command (AEW&C) planeit was impossible to tell were an enemy or a friendly would show up.She waited outside the side canyon that led from the dam to thedesert, that the hippie kat had been using as a conduit for hisreturn trips. If he didn’t know she was here he might just fly into atrap.
As she finished that thought her own radar warning klaxonsounded. The enemy either had compensated for the lack of radarviewing capacity or was just plain lucky. In either case he had foundher and painted her plane with his own radar tracking. Oh well notime like the present to say it, “This is Lieutenant Feral you’reunder arrest.” The hippie kat started laughing. “Obviously he’s notimpressed.” Felina said to herself.
“Lieutenant Feral why have you attacked me?”
As if he needed to ask Felina thought to herself, “Becauseyou attacked Megakat Dam.”
“That’s not a good enough reason to arrest me for anything.That dam is an abomination that I intend to eliminate. I request thatyou no longer interfere with me.”
“No dice, you’ll touch that dam over my dead body.”
“So be it. I hope you like it in the third input.”
Within seconds every missile warning alarm in Felina’splane was sounding. Felina turned her plane up the canyon she hadbeen laying in wait just outside of hoping to evade the missile’stracking guidance. She flew up the canyon as fast as was safe but themissile stayed on her tail following her despite her efforts toescape.
Felina maxxed out her engines and climbed out of the canyonshe knew that she could not fool the missile with chaff or flares andthat outrunning it would be impossible. As if to add insult to injurythe plane’s fuel gauges read empty. Felina sighed then keyed hermicrophone, “This is Lieutenant Feral I’m out of the game, to anyonewho is listening get this guy, over.” Felina pushed the eject button.
Felina watched as the pilotless plane banked slightly tothe right followed by the missile. The missile hit the planeexploding in a brilliant flash that consumed the Enforcer jet turningit into a flaming wreck that fell to the ground like a stone. Shealso saw the hippie kat fly by most likely to inspect his missile’shandiwork. He then flew down the canyon towards the dam. It was up tothe SWAT Kats now.
The SWAT Kats were reappraising their situation trying todecide the pro’s and con’s of moving to a new city. At any rateMegakat City was still intact and it was their job to see that itremained so. The only problem was what to do to insure that, thatremained the case.
Just how to do that without weapons was the part that theycould not figure out. With Felina down the most that they could dowas delay this wacko until the rest of the Enforcers got here to shothim down or until he ran out of gas.
They hid in a box canyon near the dam utilizing theTurbokat’s hover mode and waited for the hippie kat to make his movefor the dam then blast him. Unless he blasted them first.
To lower their chance of being detected the SWAT Kats werenot using any active radar instead they would wait until they got avisual sighting. “Here he comes Razor.” T-Bone called back when thehippie kat came into view.
“All right let’s get him.”
T-Bone switched from hover mode to regular flight pullingout of the box canyon into the main chasm firing the cement machinegun at the hippie kat.
Surprised by the unexpected appearance of the Turbokat andthe globs of ‘cement’ it fired at him, the hippie kat made anemergency turn to the right flying up the side canyon that he hadbeen using for return flights. The Turbokat followed him, firing itscement machine gun. The globs of quick drying polymers becameminiature cannonballs threatening to do severe damage to his plane’stail.
Having the Turbokat behind him was not an ideal situation.He could not fire his own weapons at it and could in turn be blastedfrom behind, although the canyon’s rugged curvy walls provided someprotection. It would only be a matter of time before some of thelethal globs hit their mark.
Coming up was a long straight stretch of canyon. That wasexactly what the hippie kat needed. The cement machine gun was amarvelous weapon for close range combat and for numerous targets at adistance. However it was not good for single targets at a distance.If his plan were to work the SWAT Kats would have to after roundingthe curve, speed up to employ their weapon.
Rounding the corner he opened the throttle and his planeaccelerated lengthening the gap between it and the Turbokat. TheTurbokat rounded the corner and accelerated as if on cue. The larger,faster Turbokat could easily close the distance between the two andthe hippie kat knew this in fact it was what he wanted. “A littlecloser, a little closer.” he whispered to himself as he switched tothe air to air missile pylon. “A little closer, now!”
The hippie kat closed the throttle and hit his air brakes.His plane’s airspeed slowed precipitously and the Turbokat passed bybefore even getting a shot off. It was almost too good to be true. Hewas now behind the Turbokat; he closed the airbrakes and throttledback up opening his bay doors as he did so. “Good Bye SWAT Kats!” Helaughed as he fired the last of his air to air missiles, “I can’t sayit hasn’t been fun.”
“Razor, what just happened?”
“I believe that our quarry is now chasing us with the helpof a missile.” Razor noted that both the radar and infra-red warninglights were lit.
“Is it o-kay to panic now?”
“Yes I believe it is.”
“Thank you.” T-Bone pushed the Turbokat’s throttle to fulland climbed out of the canyon at a steep angle.
Razor dropped flares and chaff hoping to interrupt themissile’s tracking system. The missile played little heed to thedecoys instead it closed in on the Turbokat. “Y’know T-Bone we shouldget this guy to work on our weapons design, this missile is equippedwith both second generation IR homing and Doppler guidance. If oneform of tracking loses a lock the other continues tracking until bothcan be used again. I get goose chills just thinking about it.”
“Yeah, well when that missile makes contact with us we bothwill be getting hot flashes. How about some kind of evasive action toget rid of it?”
“About all I can say is we have to outlast it. The missileis heavy and that retards its speed and range. If we continue goingat full speed we should be able to stay ahead of the missile until itruns out of fuel.” As Razor said this the Turbokat’s engines began tomake funny noises.
“Why does that not fill me to the brim with confidenceRazor?” T-Bone asked sarcastically.
The ground below them changed to water. They were now overanother tributary canyon that had been flooded when the dam wasbuilt. T-Bone flew low and turned the Turbokat toward the main chasm.
“T-Bone what are you doing, we’re barely keeping ahead ofthat thing? If we make turns like that it’s going to catch us.”
“I have an idea that might just be crazy enough to work.We’re going to fly to the dam go into hover mode with our jets backto it. That should take us off its radar and eliminate our infra-redsignature. If the dam is still there.”*******************************************************************
The hippie kat wanted to insure that the dam was not thereto hide behind. His radar had picked up activity at several Enforcerairbases around the city. He guessed that all of his bombing andshooting at what they had sent after him had finally woken them up.
It would not matter though they were too far away to stophim from finishing his project. He thought as he turned back up theriver chasm toward the dam. He opened the bomb bay doors of his planereadying the bomb for delivery.
Concentric rings grew out from a float that bobbed lazilyin the breeze. Attached to one end of the line was a lure and hook tothe other was a fishing pole being held by Lieutenant CommanderSteele. He sighed, after they began blasting all of the fish werescared away it figures that would happen on his day off. The sound ofjet engines gave him a moment of pause. Steele turned to see theTurbokat racing toward him. Stupidly he stood up in the boat causingit to tip depositing him in the water.
Steele broke the surface as the Turbokat flew over. He spitout water and shook his head opening his eyes only to see the missilecoming strait at him. He breathed in again and ducked under thewater.
To the missile Steele and the junk around him was justdebris. The real target remained the Turbokat still firmly within itssights. Until it disappeared from radar its exhaust plumes were stilltraceable but a new aircraft happened on the scene.
The new aircraft was a much more tempting target than thenow cold exhaust trail of the Turbokat so the missile changed courseaiming for its new target.
The hippie kat watched the Turbokat hide behind the damthen he heard the missile warning alarms sound in his own jet a fewseconds later. The hippie kat was unmoved by the reappearance of hisown missile. The SWAT Kats had obviously figured out how tooutmaneuver it and turn it toward him. No matter, he thought as heflipped the safety switch to ready on the missile’s self destructmechanism. He hated to waste a missile like this but it was necessaryif his plan was to succeed.
He pressed the self destruct button, nothing happened. Hepressed it again, again nothing happened. Unfortunately for him themissile’s self destruct mechanism was shattered by a bullet that wasfired by an irate guard. No amount of pressing the self destructbutton would stop the missile until it reached its target. Since hislast line of defense was not working the hippie kat did what mostpeople would do in his position, he started pushing the buttonrapidly and with greater force.
The SWAT Kats watched as the plane exploded, “How’d youknow to do that
T-Bone?” Asked Razor as the hippie kat’s planedisappeared behind the dam.
“To tell you the truth Razor. This was just one of thosetimes when things just go right. Let’s not question why it’s so.”
“Fine by me. Perhaps we should get back to the hangerbefore Feral gets here and blames us for this mess.”
Lieutenant Commander Steele dog-paddled his way toward hisseverely listing tackle box. Each movement he made pushed the box alittle further away and caused it to take on just a little morewater. When Steele was within reach of it, the tackle inside shiftedtoward the front of the box weighing it down effectively sinking it.
“Aw geez,” Steele complained looking back toward theoverturned rowboat, “well at least I can still get my deposit backfor the boat.” As he said that the plane of the recently deceasedhippie kat crashed down on top of it both objects sank to the bottomof the lake. Steele shock his headwater droplets flew off his cheekruffs as head muttered, “I just can’t win.”
EndBased on SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron owned by Hanna-Barbera.Independent characters are the property of Christman EnterprisesGroup. Super Star Destroyer Executor is the property of Lucasfilms. Coming Soon*: Beneath the Surface* soon being a relative term
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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.