I stood with the rest of the Aviation Club, listening to a lecture, by some pilot guides. We were in a hanger that actually housed what the discussion was about. Under normal circumstances, my mind would of been other places, but the topic the talker was speaking about was one that interested me: a fighter jet. The fighter that was being highlighted was the F-15 Eagle, an Air Force air superiority craft. After about twenty minutes, it was time to leave and go back to school.
Heading back to the bus to leave for school from this field trip that had taken all day, some guys came up from behind an F-15 in a nearby hanger, and held guns at the Flight Club and our two guides. At first, everyone thought this was some sort of sick joke, but when the terrorists started letting shots fly, we realized these men who had come seeming out of nowhere, were definitely not kidding around. They ordered us to lay down on the pavement, so they could get control over this hanger, and the other fifty, if they hadn’t already done so. One minute the F-15 pilot guides were arguing with the guys who had come out of nowhere and the next, loud rotor blades were heard, cutting them off. These bad guys at first numbered four, but when the helicopters came into sight, I realized some insane organization was at work here. I didn’t remember everything that happened, just that I cared if I got out of here, in one piece.
Keeping close to the F-15 jet the pilot had been telling the club about, I looked around and saw more bad guys– terrorists and such, I don’t know what, running around and rounding kids up- I was terrified and slowly made my way to the front of the jet. I was hoping to make a run for it, when a guy in a suit and tie yelled at me. Another terrorist. I was right behind the jet’s ladder, and foolishly began to back up, and CLIMB it because I didn’t know what else to do. I wasn’t thinking, just reacting in total fear… a fear that this guy would shoot me to oblivion, if I didn’t move. I let out a low cry in frustration, as I tumbled into the cockpit, my head where a pilot would put one of his feet, and my feet, hanging in the seat. This time I screamed in fear as the cockpit canopy closed and the guy in the suit smiled, leaving. He knew I didn’t know how to operate a jet, let alone its canopy. I was stuck, and in the most embarrassing of positions. Stuck in the type of jet I wanted to fly when I joined the Air Force.
From this position, I could hear the faint screams and voices of the captors and captured. They were moving away, probably to take over a building, and slowly but surely, the rest of Kadena. Managing to get up in a kneeling position, I stared out the canopy. I was right: Air Force officers and enlisted people were being forced out of a nearby building and from what I could hear, more choppers were approaching to help the first guys who had arrived, take over Kadena. I didn’t know the reason why, because I was just an innocent bystander, caught in the rush. I put my face against the canopy window and stared out at what was happening. More people were being rounded up outside, and some bodies were laying about. I turned around and sat in the cockpit the way a pilot would.
I put one hand on the throttle and the other on the stick, then looked into the Heads Up Display. It wasn’t on, so basically I was looking into a piece of glass. I looked unsteadily at all the controls of the jet and decided to try to start the jet engines. I looked at the rows of knobs and flipped a few, then turned some dials and pushed the stick forward. The engines made a low wine, and started up. The elevons also worked, but because of the wheel chaulks, I didn’t go anywhere. That was enough to give the terrorists a distraction and the Air Force guys the opportunity to break free.
I was starting to feeling good at this moment, until I felt a bump and realized I was moving slowly forward. I then panicked, and basically started yelling at the jet I was in. I saw the massive pillars that held up the fighter planes’ hangers nearing the jet’s wings, so I pushed the stick to one side to avoid an impact, but as I did that, I also unintentionally pushed the throttle forward and began to pick up speed.
Clearing the hangers, I was out in the open, and started to taxi down the runway. I saw numerous choppers moving overhead into attack positions over different strategic buildings. I tried pulling back on the stick to stop, but to no avail. The over head choppers seemed to ignore me until I neared a runway because suddenly, one veered off its pattern and shoot a missile at me…. So I waited for impact and death… But it never came. Instead, I saw a blinding flash of light and felt a huge wave of nausea and of disorientation…
Swat Kats Dimension:
I opened up my eyes and looked about with pain. Somewhere in all that trouble, I had kept my hands on the HOTAS (hands on throttle and stick). I had pushed up the throttle, so I wouldn’t stall and plummet in the air, and now found myself in a canyon. I got the radio with one shaking hand and flipped it on, hoping someone would hear me, and tell me why I didn’t die from a missile and why I was in the middle of this place. I called for help, somehow not killing myself in the process. Finally, giving up after sending distress for several moments, I found myself inbound, heading for a wall of solid rock.. I pushed up the stick and saw something flash in the distance. I didn’t catch what it was, or really care, because I had problems of my own, really BIG problems, like not knowing how to fly this aircraft. I experimented with the stick for several moments, going up, down and side to side. Feeling that I could overdo this, I stopped and concentrated on staying in level flight, which wasn’t easy. I reached out for the mic, and grabbed it. Just I was about key in for help again, a voice came up on the radio.
“Unidentified aircraft, state your business in this canyon, over.”
I sat there for several seconds, holding the mic in my hand, then replied, “I didn’t know. I… I don’t know how I got here… Really.”
“What? We have planted targets here that may be highly lethal to any other craft who aren’t prepared to knock them out.” the voice said, irritated.
“HELP ME!!! I DON’T KNOW HOW TO FLY THIS JET!!!” I said, screaming, stress and panic totally taking control of me.
“We’re on our way,” a second seemingly familiar voice said.
I didn’t reply, just keep going in one direction I felt remotely safe in going: forward. In several seconds, a black jet was flying about twenty meters higher, parallel to my position. I felt weak in my stomach, and the faint hits of a headache I knew I was going to have later today, if I survived. I radioed the black jet and asked if there were any targets in the nearby vicinity. Thankfully, there were none, and I now was faced with many questions. Where was I? If I wasn’t on Okinawa, where would I sleep, stay, get food, and basically live? Who could I trust, and why was this voice so familiar? I knew that there were no canyons on Okinawa, the island was way to small to have one. In the back of my mind, I hoped that someone would just explain this all away; tell me I was just dreaming and wake me up from this odd spectrum of events. I knew that I didn’t belong here, and maybe, just maybe, if I was stuck here, I could trust the people in that jet…
“Unidentified aircraft, we are nearing the landing zone, do you know how to land?” one of the guys in the other jet said.
“Uh, no. I don’t even think I pulled up the landing gear. I can’t fly, so where’s your hanger? Um, I’m lost and well confused, I need to land so we can talk.” I said, knowing I was babbling. Out of fear, seeing another slab of rock nearing my position, pulled back on the stick and got instant acceleration upwards.
Not expecting this, the black jet banked left and then flew again parallel to its original course, but I however was not in control. Wanting to break out of the climb, I pushed the stick downwards, heading for a third piece of canyon rock, and screamed. I rolled right and avoided the rock, but now I was so nervous, I couldn’t keep in level flight. About thirty seconds after that, I was going vertical, taking G’s and seeing everything spin as I went bonkers. I then was so out of it, that only when my head stopped spinning, did I realized that the black jet had sent two of its missiles out. Each one had attached itself to one of the jet wings and I realized that the other jet was controlling where my jet went. Minutes went by and I saw we were heading for a junk yard of some sort, and getting really to land. Inwardly, I was happy to get out of this plane, but scared to talk to the pilots piloting that menacing looking jet, that in some ways resembled the Navy’s F-14 Tomcat.
The flight in was smooth and with some luck I found the breaks and landed. I still didn’t know how to operate the canopy and could only sit and watch as two kats climbed out of their black jet and attached cables to a certain part of my jet’s landing gear. The jet and I were towed into an underground hanger, all the while, my mind trying to tell me why this seemed so familiar. When the answer finally registered, I pushed back one of the sleeves on my long sleeve shirt and gasped in amazement, but not in surprise. I had FUR on my arms, and it was really thick, but not long. My fur was the lightest shade of orange, with tiger like, black stripes going up the sides of my arms. I paused for a moment, my thoughts turning to a television show series I had enjoyed watching… a show called Swat Kats: The Radical Squadron. Could I be in that universe? The solution to my question seemed to be, yes, I am in the Swat Kat’s dimension. I pulled off my fighter pilot groves and looked at my hands, turned paws, then bared my claws, which were very sharp. I looked for a mirror and finding one in a small side compartment, practically lost it because I looked like a kat. Taking a moment, I examined my face, and looked at my teeth. It would be interesting eating with two sets of very pointy teeth. To make matters “worse,” most of the hair I had before I had arrived in this place, was gone. I looked like I had just got one of those haircuts an officer in the military gets. By this time, after finding these things out, I was totally in the underground hanger, and the two pilots, in their gear, were now on the F-15’s wing and making their way to the cockpit. They lifted the canopy after three or so tries at prying it open, and managed to do it without damaging anything.
I climbed out of the aircraft, and down a ladder the SWAT Kats had provided, finally on solid ground. I was thankful to be out of the jet but still a little shaken from the resent flight. Now started the explaining.
First Razor stepped forward, and introduced himself. “Hello, I’m Razor and this is T-Bone. Who are you? And how did you get a hold of this aircraft?”
“Um… I climbed into it, when some terrorists tried to take over Kadena Air Base. I started the jet’s engines, then accidentally took off, and then found myself here in this canyon,” I said, while trying not to sound to hysterical.
The other kat, T-Bone, hesitated a moment, then asked, “Kadena? Is that a military installation? We were testing another version of the Dimensional Radar, when our sensors went haywire and we heard your May Day call. We then intercepted and brought you here. Just think if Feral would of caught you. You’re lucky we ran into you.”
I didn’t respond right away, but before I could stop myself, let out: “Yeah, but you don’t get it! I’m not a kat! Kadena Air Base is in another dimension! I don’t know how your radar picked me up, but I was in that jet, trying to run away from some bad guys! Just great, my chances of being a pilot back in the human universe are now busted and now I’m stuck here! What am I supposed to do? I am not even a KAT!” I was so mad, it seemed impossible to think. I was in another dimension!
The Swat Kats, then talked for several seconds and then Razor approached me again. “You’re not?! What’s a human? If you’re from dimension whatever, and you’re not a kat, then why do you look like a kat? And if you’re really not a kat, aren’t you supposed to be freaked out by us?”
“Well, it’s a long story, you see, back where I lived, there was this show, and it was like your world. It showed all the basic things about this city. I could explain better later, and also, how would I know why I’m a kat? It’s not like people in my dimension go around doing what I did everyday. I used to have a normal life, and now I’m here… not saying that you’re bad or anything, but I am lost in this place. Agggghhh!” I said, glaring down at the pavement, in defeat.
“Well, if you’re not from here, then that means that no one has any records of you. I think that it would be best if you stayed here for the meantime, and hey, with that jet of yours, maybe we can give you some flying lessons, if you’re interested,” T-Bone said, pointing back at my jet.
“Really? I mean, thanks… Sorry I haven’t given you my name… My name is Conrad. I would appreciate it, if you never called my Connie, ok?”
“Sure,” the Swat Kats said in unison, turning to leave and to go to their lockers. I just stared after them, until they left my view.
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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.