Original SWAT Kats Story

X-Kat: The Mutant Squadron

By RogueFanKC

  • 10 Chapters
  • 87,417 Words

Set in Red Witch’s Misfit-verse! The X-Men are trapped in Megakat City, and their only hope lies in the lonely and bitter Razor. Read and enjoy the fight for Megakat City as the X-Men and SWAT Kats team up against evil. (10 Chapters – Complete) Rated M for Violence and Mild Innuendo (Individual ratings on each chapter indicate content).

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Author's Notes:

Title: X-Kat: The Mutant Squadron
Author(s): RogueFanKC
E-mail address: I do not like giving my e-mail address link available on the Internet. If you truly wish to e-mail me, go to my author profile at Fanfiction.net and you can view a picture of my e-mail there or review my story there (this story is also found on fanfiction.net under the “X-Men: Evolution” section of Cartoons).  The link is http://www.fanfiction.net/u/249987
Date: April 17, 2005
Rating: M
Warnings: Mild swearing and one extreme swear word
Disclaimer: I do not own the characters of “X-Men: Evolution” for they are the respective property of Marvel Comics.  “SWAT Kats: the Radical Squadron” in this cross-over fanfic is owned by the company, Hanna-Barbara.
Summary: Desperate to find help for Sam and Amara, Jake leads the X-Men to the private isle of Dr. Hackle and Dr. Abi Sinian, and despite some hesitation, the X-Men finally find haven, food, and rest.  Yet the X-Men then learn of something very interesting about the Invincible Alliance of Evil before Jake refuses Hackle’s request to help the city. Yet, the next morning, the X-Men, Hackle and Sinian discover Jake has left to do the unthinkable…
Author’s Comments/Notes: None

Chapter 5

Flight or Fight?

“Crud, Puma-Dyne’s surrounded with Enforcers!” Jake hissed as he peeked out of the shadows briefly to spot from his position that the entire technological research lab was indeed en massed with hordes and hordes of the Enforcer soldiers and even a couple of armored tanks.  Commander Feral was no one’s fool.  All of the police-kats were armed with guns and infrared visors, and the tanks were built with layers and layers of reinforced, insulated steel, material that would be resistant to energy and electricity and thus, providing a bigger obstacle for Professor Xavier and his X-Men.  After the excursion with the mutant teenagers, the Enforcers were better prepared to deal with the powers thrown their way, and had Jake not been on the run, he would have slightly marveled at Feral’s intuition and cunning.

Professor Xavier sighed in disappointment, “I should have expected such a set-back.  After the Commander discovered that you were assisting us, they would naturally cover all the possible bases and havens you could think of that would be sufficient enough to provide temporary shelter and relief, especially considering the Enforcers know two of our own are injured and that we cannot achieve much of a defense against their armed forces or travel much of a distance for escape.”

“So now what do we do?!  We can’t fix the alternator without the advanced technology and materials we can scourge up over at the research lab!” Forge groaned softly to himself as Jake huddled back with the X-Men, trying to break the news to them.  It was about 3:00 in the morning, and it was still dark out, but the dimness and shadows provided excellent cover for the mutants and the maverick, and Jake insisted they hide out of the rooftops of the surrounding buildings and skyscrapers.  Not only was it further away from the glowing lights of the city down below, but since there were no helicopters and jets flying in the dead of night, it was safer and much easier to make an escape through the air rather than through the crowded and limited streets and alleys.

“And it’s getting worse, I’m afraid.  Amara needs surgery to remove the bullet from her hip, or else she will continue to deteriorate.  She has already lost enough blood as it is,” Ororo said worriedly as she wiped the girl’s sweaty brow with her smooth palm.  Amara looked close to passing out as the blood started to pour a little more steadily from her bullet wound.

“Then that eliminates the possibility of using my telepathy to put the Enforcers to an induced state of sleep,” Xavier commented gravely, “Even if I did use my power, the fact that these beings are of an entirely different species altogether would make it risky.  The physiology and neurological patterns of cats are far different from the human being, and the effect of my mutant powers would be highly unpredictable.  If I used my power too much, I could kill all of the Enforcers accidentally.  And if I was too weak in trying to use my telepathic-imprints, it would be enough to alert them that something was off and suspect our presence.  And even if the Enforcers were asleep, the lack of radio communications from their parts would arouse more suspicion and cause Feral and his Enforcers to investigate.”

“And even if ya did put all those Enforcer yahoos to sleep, that wouldn’t do any good for Amara!  She needs to be treated now!  We can’t just wait around for Forge to build the alternator to send us back home!  We can’t risk it!” Rogue added, nearly distraught.

“But where else can we go?!  We can’t let Amara die!!  There’s got to be some other place we can go!  Someplace that has all the stuff for Forge to use and a place that can get medical aid for Amara!” Sam said.  Despite the bullet lesion in his shoulder, the first aid kit was sufficient enough to treat his injury, and after a few hours worth of rest, Cannonball managed to gain much of his strength back.

Homme, is there any other place either you or the kid remember from watching the TV show?” Remy begged from Kurt and Jamie.  The two teenagers, however, were at a loss, unable to recollect another relief center.  Jake then realized that there was one last possibility.

The brown kat said slowly, “Well…there is one more place I can think of that can help with everyone’s predicament.”  And at sudden surge of expectation and relief shooting into the mutants’ eyes, Jake added glumly, “But it’s risky.  Feral might also be there as well…but it’s the best chance you have to save Amara.”

“Let’s go, then.  Lead the way…hairball,” Logan grunted.  Even though most of the X-Men knew that when Logan used a nickname it was usually a good indication that he was growing used to that particular person and beginning to warm up in his trust, Jean and several others wished Wolverine was a bit more considerate in choosing a moniker for Razor.  Razor especially didn’t find it the slightest amusing, but he wrathfully and belligerently kept quiet.

For a half-hour, Jake managed to lead the X-Men unseen through the roofs of the buildings before they managed to find their way to the Megakat City Docks, the colossal marina and port riddled with thousands and thousands of boats, ships, and Enforcer battleships.  However, the X-Men could see that there were a considerable amount of Enforcer boats patrolling the ocean and docks with their probing search-lights, guarding the water and keeping a vigilant eye for Dark Kat or Razor.  Yet Razor was not the least bit worried as he led the Professor and his students and staff to a desolate fiord a bit off from the populated waterfronts before pressing a button on his glovatrix.  Almost immediately, the radio signal opened a secret compartment from the sand, revealing a pair of steel, stone-and-seaweed covered metal doors opening to a clandestine, partly submerged hangar, large enough to house a bus.  Razor quickly ushered everyone inside the large, metallic chamber down a series of steel steps, revealing his hidden trump card.  There, submerged partly in the sea-water, was a huge vehicle that could be best classified as a half-tank and half-submarine hybrid.  It was colored in the classic SWAT Kat design of black and red highlights, but the metal was shiny, smooth despite months and months of salt and foam, not like any of the other alloys used to construct army and naval fleet and battleships.  And Logan and Hank could spot many sophisticated weapons decked on the surface of the ship along with an actual tank-turret and having a pair of state-of-the-art hydro turbo-engines, mechanical marvels that weren’t even widespread back in the human world.  It was an impressive piece of machinery, and some of the X-Men were stunned beyond belief.

“Oh my fucking stars and garters!” gasped Hank, for once letting his decorum and etiquette fail him as he swore out loud.

Jake smiled with some pride as he leapt on top of the tank, opening the pressurized hatch and beckoning everyone to enter in, boasting slightly, “Yeah, I know what you mean.  Despite me and Cha – ”

Jake faltered a bit before continuing with some pain, “We both worked on this for a year and a half during every moment of free-time we ever had, and even now, I could just spend hours just staring and admiring this baby.  We built it out of the combined parts of an Eagle tank and a Seawolf submarine and reinforced the metal with an indestructible alloy thanks to several alien allies of ours.  Trust me on this…if we run into any underwater troubles, this baby will take care of them without breaking a sweat.  We could even dive to the upper parts of the Marianna Trench with this tank-submarine and not worry about the pressure crushing us.  We called it ‘The Aquain’.”

“Oh!  I remember that!  That was when you and the alien underwater kats, the Aquains, teamed up to stop Mutilor from using the stolen ship to destroy Megakat City!” Jamie piped up as he settled in on the cozy leather seats and buckled in, strapping his seat belt.  It was pleasantly comfortable inside, and there was enough room for everyone to stretch out their legs and arms if they wished to.  Jake smiled a bit as he seated himself in the front along with Logan, Lockheed, Professor Xavier, and Beast before gunning the motor.

“You pretty much watched the show about us SWAT Kats obsessively, haven’t you?” he asked as the Aquain rushed out of the submerged tunnel with amazing speed rivaling that of a nitro-fueled racecar before diving with barely a ripple in the water, hidden by the caress of the murky ocean.

“Hey, can I try driving this for a little bit?!” Bobby gasped excitedly at Jake, “Puh-leeeeeaaaassse?  I’ll be careful with it!”

“I thought you and your friends told me how you crashed the jet back at your Institute when you and several others took it out for a joyride without the staff’s permission?” Jake pointed out as he frowned at the adolescent.

“I didn’t crash it…I just dinged it,” Bobby clarified with slight affront.

“You’re really stretching that one, Bobby,” Roberto scoffed.

Jake’s eyes softened a bit before they became gloomy again.  The kat then offered, “When I’m done…I’ll leave you with the Aquain for a little bit before you return back home.”

“You don’t know what you’re getting yourself into,” Hank groaned as he heard Bobby and Ray and Sam cheer at the answer and discuss the possible prospects with keen interest and delight.

Within mere minutes, the Aquain managed to hit land, and using its heavily-treaded tank wheels, Jake managed to force the vehicle to crawl onto the sandy beach of a private island, lush and green with plants and far enough from the Enforcers to escape detection.  Scott and Roberto could see that even if they tried hard enough, they could only spot the very tops of the tallest of skyscrapers in the horizon.  They certainly put enough distance between themselves and the city.

“Where are we?” Piotr asked as he carried Amara.

“To visit an old friend…though I just pray to God that he will be willing to help us out,” Jake said off-handedly as he and the rest of the X-Men lightly trekked through the jungle before they came up to a large yet friendly-looking research facility, complete with a space observatory, roomy living quarters, and even a secluded jet hangar.  Yet it was not open for intruders.  The X-Men could see the heavily gated electrified fence with only a simple intercom communication-box positioned at the very front entrance.  And, to the X-Men disbelief, there were cat-like androids meandering around the premises, doing simple housekeeping and gardening tasks with their metallic claws and multitude of robotic instruments hidden inside their bodies.  It was like being surrounded by an army of mechanical maids.

“Wow, like totally talk about hi-tech!” Kitty marveled.

“I know!  We should get one for the mansion!” Ray said with a smile, temporarily forgetting their plight.

Jake then pressed the intercom button on the front gate.  An elderly yet indignant voice rasped out of the transmission box.

“I’m telling you Feral, you have already searched my place three goddamned times!!  You will not find anything here!!  I don’t care if you are the Commander or not, but the next time you and your kats get past my front door will be the day I let you take the key to my laboratory from my cold, dead paws, you mishegoyim!!”

Well, that was a good sign.  It was a slight indication that the Enforcers weren’t camped out in Hackle’s home.

“Dr. Hackle…” Jake started.  Jamie and Kurt’s eyes lit up when they heard the name.  Dr. Hackle was a retired weapons-researcher who was a good friend of the SWAT Kats.

“Oh!”  Upon finding out that the unseen visitor was not Commander Feral and his Enforcers, Dr. Hackle took on a much more friendly yet apologetic and distant tone, not registering his guest at first.

Ach!  Forgive this senile, old kat, young one, but I am sorry.  I am not interested in anything you are selling, and -”

“Dr. Hackle…it’s…it’s…” yet Jake couldn’t finish the sentence.  He was too apprehensive of letting a kat know his whereabouts for the first time in a month, and already, he felt ready to dash back out to his hiding place the instant the words left his mouth.  Yet the reminder of the fact that the X-Men were depending on him was enough to keep his hind feet firmly rooted into the concrete steps as he forced himself to finish.

“It’s me…Razor.”

There was a stunned silence at the other end, and for a moment, Cyclops and Professor X were fearful that the scientist either dropped dead from shock or was busy calling the Enforcers immediately at the sound of the vigilante’s voice.  Then the old kat’s voice piped up in disbelief from the other end.

“Razor?!  Jake Clawson?!

Another voice, a female, spoke up in the background, gasping loudly, “Jake Clawson?!  He’s here?!!  At the front gates?!”

Jake didn’t have to listen closely to guess who it was.  It was the female kat, Dr. Abi Sinian, a fellow researcher, professor, and head of the archeological department of the Megakat City Museum of History, an establishment that was well-renowned for its information, artifacts, and facilities all throughout the world due to Abi’s hard work and constant dedication to the museum’s legacy and standards.  Abi herself had helped Callie and the SWAT Kats deal with the Pastmaster one time, aiding them with her knowledge of the Pastmaster’s history with the Great Pyramid and the Katchu-Pichu demon and its supposed weaknesses.  Jake guessed Abi was helping Dr. Hackle out on his island part-time with his research and with his daily activities since the kat was still so old and frail, he could barely do all of his chores and work without aid of an assistant.

Jake then broke in though the hushed whispers as he said, “Dr. Hackle, Dr. Sinian…I need your help.  Please.”

After a tense moment of silence and thought, Dr. Hackle’s voice then rang through the intercom, even more apologetic and remorseful, saying, “Jacob…I cannot let you in.  I am truly sorry…I cannot aid and abet a wanted fugitive and criminal, especially when Feral has already hounded me earlier for helping you and T-Bone before in the past.  The Commander has already given me enough grief for all my nine lives, and I cannot risk my life and scientific legacy for you.  Please forgive me, Razor…but I cannot help you.”

“Dr. Hackle, please!” Jake shot back jadedly, desperate.

“Jake, you must go.  Please, don’t make this even more difficult for yourself or for us.”

“It’s not for me!!  It’s for the X-Men!!  The aliens that accidentally found their way to our world!!  They’re hurt, and one of them is dying if she doesn’t get a bullet removed from her body!!  Please!!”

“The X-Men?!  You mean those aliens that attacked the Enforcers and are helping Dark Kat take over the city?!  Jake, then you really have betrayed us!!” gasped Dr. Hackle, unwilling to believe and beside himself with shock and hurt.

Jake was now livid as he shouted, “That’s a lie and you know it!!  Dr. Hackle, Dr. Sinian, they’re not with Dark Kat!!  They’re not on anyone’s side in this war!!  They’re just innocent bystanders who got dragged into this mess!!  Look, I know you might find it hard to believe, but they’re not evil and not part of the Alliance!!  One of them, a girl, is hurt and she needs surgery!!  I know you have a medical background in emergency medicine, Dr. Hackle, and your laboratory has an ER ward for such emergencies!!  Please!!!  I need your help!”

There was a short pause before Dr. Sinian’s voice, trembling, rang through the intercom.

“Clawson…if you don’t remove yourself and those aliens from the premises, we’ll call Feral and his Enforcers right now.  You have one minute.”

Dr. Hackle then provided gently, “Please, young Jacob, do not make this harder on yourself.  Will you please just leave…for our sakes and for yours?”

“That’s it!!  I’ve had enough of this!!  If Amara doesn’t make it, you’re gonna have her death on your cowardly paws, you mangy fur-balls!!” Logan snarled as he drew out his adamantium claws with a snikt.  Gambit and Colossus looked ready to join in, but then Hank and Ororo stopped them from doing anything rash as Razor took one final gamble, his voice thick with jaded emotion.

“Dr. Hackle, Dr. Sinian…please, just think about this.  You said you trusted the SWAT Kats before to help protect the city, and even without the mask, I’m still the same kat who helped you fight against the Metallikats and the Pastmaster.  You said you think I betrayed the city and joined the Invincible Alliance of Evil in order to seek revenge on Feral for what he did to T-Bone.  And yet the Razor you have always known would never do such a thing.  Now, I have to ask you this: who do you believe is telling the truth?  Me?  Or Feral?  Now…think and decide whatever you will.”

Jake waited, holding his breath, as the X-Men just tensed up from the baited silence.

The gates clicked open with a buzzing noise from the intercom.

“Everyone…the X-Men and Jake…all of you, get in quickly before daylight breaks!” Dr. Hackle commanded sternly.

 

 

“Will Amara be all right, Dr. Hackle?” Ororo asked worriedly, in a rush, as she practically leapt onto the flustered professor in his green scrubs as he, Hank, Jean, and the Professor exited the ER bay.  It had been two hours after the X-Men were allowed into Dr. Hackle’s facility, and immediately, the kind professor took Amara to his medical ward where he, Hank, and Jean began to operate with the Professor Xavier providing assistance with a mind-link from Hackle’s mind and knowledge to Beast and Jean’s consciousness, allowing them to assist in the procedure.

Dr. Hackle turned to be a skinny yet grizzled kat with bifocal spectacles and pale peach-brown colored fur growing wilding around his head along with white whiskered cheeks and a white ponytail of white hair tied behind.  Yet despite the small figure in his white lab-coat appearing seemingly frail, the kat managed to summon enough willpower and strength to help Amara, shedding his humble, absent-minded appearance rather quickly.  Dr. Abi Sinian was a beautiful she-kat with coffee-colored fur with a wise, no-nonsense face and shoulder-length, chestnut -colored hair.  Hey body was tall, short of lanky, and her eyes were as dark as her black nose, but she managed to look very professional in her white lab-coat over her preppy-looking sweater and slacks.

Needless to say, upon the first sight of the mutants, Hackle and Sinian were very shocked and a bit fearful, despite the multiple assurances from Jake that they were friendly.  Still, upon the sight of the languishing Amara, Hackle immediately took charge, determined to save her life while Abi cordially offered the X-Men the living quarters and some additional first-aid kits, pointing them to the showers.  The teenagers stampeded towards the bathrooms, and upon finding that there were only enough shower facilities for ten people at a time, there were several arguments about who got to go first before it got settled with fifty or so furious rounds of rock-paper-scissors and the general threat from Rogue that she was going to hold all the shampoo and soap Abi gave to the X-Men hostage unless she was in the first wave for the baths.

Humorously enough, the shampoos were Abi’s favorite brands, “Catnip Essence” along with “Tail and Shoulders” and “Pantene Kat-V”.  It was weird being in a world that was oddly similar and different from yours at the same time.

Hackle stammered a bit as he pried himself from Ororo’s frantic grip, saying soothingly, “She will be fine.  The surgery was a complete success, Ms. Monroe, and she is recuperating nicely.  She was put under general anesthesia as we removed the bullet, and there was some slight damage to her hip-bone and pelvis as a result of the metal shrapnel, but within a month or so, the bone should have restructured itself enough to heal completely.  There was no need for any metal plates and screws for this injury.  Your student shall awaken and suffer no serious side-effects.  Thanks to the blood provided from your staff member, Logan, we were able to make an efficient blood transfusion to help her recover from the blood she had lost earlier, and she shall be as good as before.  There is no need to worry.  She is in no danger.”

“So can we see her?!” Tabitha asked in eager anticipation as she and the other X-Kids gathered around.

Hackle nodded, and with a whoop, the X-Men stormed into the ER bay, leaving the adults alone in the living room.  Abi had to smile as she saw Lockheed choosing to stay behind to nuzzle affectionately against her legs.  Even though she had never seen a miniature dragon before, the museum curator found Kitty’s pet to be quite irresistible.  She then noticed Jake standing a bit in the distance before recalling that though she and Ororo and Logan checked over all the students to ensure none of them were injured, Razor had not followed suit.

“Razor, we can treat your injuries as well if you need it,” Dr. Sinian offered gently.

Jake turned slightly hot around his collar as he said flatly, “Don’t bother; I’m fine.”

Logan, however, noticed the slight unease in the kat’s eyes, the slight wavering in his stoniness, a tinge of nervousness.  The kat was hiding something and sniffing the faint odor of exposed blood, Logan knew what it was.  Without warning, Logan, with a flash of his hand, gave Jake a light karate chop on the vigilante’s side, not even sufficient enough to leave a bruise.  Yet the response was instantaneous.  Jake gave a strangled cry of pain as he fell to his knees, hissing and trying his best not to whimper, as he held his right side tightly before glaring at Wolverine with absolute hatred.

What the hell did you do THAT for?!!!” Jake roared.

“Cause you were being too stubborn for your own good, hairball,” Logan shot back mercilessly before turning his attention to Beast, saying, “He’s all yours, Hank.”

With some protest, Hank and Dr. Hackle managed to lead Jake to sit upon the table and pry the torn G-suit off Jake’s upper body, and they were stunned at what they saw on the SWAT Kat’s naked torso.  On his right side-abdominal, devoid of any fur, was a deep laceration, pink, raw, and oozing slightly with pus and containing a thick, black outline of dried blood and matted, grimy fur, hard and spiked.  It was the same wound Jake received a month ago when he fought against Dark Kat, and after the four weeks of running, constant bodily movement, and wading in the sewers without special treatment, it was already heavily infected, close to gangrene.  Even underneath the hairy, pink skin, Hank could see spots of green and blue growing and festering in Jake’s puffed, swollen flesh and bloodstream.

“Oh Razor,” Abi murmured to herself in pity, holding her hands to her mouth.

Oy Gevalt!” gasped Dr. Hackle, “Razor, this is septic!  Another week or so, and you would have died from blood-poisoning!!”

“Why didn’t you treat this, Jake?” Hank asked gently as he reached for a scalpel to cut away at the dead tissue.

Jake just remained resentfully silent, humiliated at the sudden fussing over, as he shot Logan a very poisonous glare for his part in the disclosure.  Logan just stonily looked on, but inward, he was relieved that at least Razor couldn’t hide the seriousness of his wounds any longer.  Hank, meanwhile, was somewhere between exasperated and bothered.

“Stars and garters, Jake!” Beast commented, worried, as he readied the scalpel to drain the infected fluids from the wound, “It’s a miracle in itself that you haven’t been seriously handicapped from the high levels of bacteria and blockage of blood-flow in your abdominal muscles!  Are you trying to kill yourself?!”

The reddish-brown furred SWAT Kat didn’t even answer, didn’t even flinch from the sting of the blade making the incision into his sore flesh, as he just stared into space in a lifeless gaze.

 

 

“Is anyone hungry?  I’ll bet you poor children are famished,” Dr. Sinian offered kindly as she, Logan, Piotr, Ororo, Ray, and Tabitha came bustling in to the living room with over thirty pans of pizza, two gigantic bowls of shrimp salad bursting with red and green assortments of vegetables, fruit cocktail, and tons and tons of canned beverages, hanging in bunches of six with plastic rings.  After the crisis with Sam and Amara had been dealt with, and Amara had awoken from her surgery several hours ago, Abi thought that the X-Men could use a good meal considering it was close to dinnertime.

She couldn’t have said a bigger understatement in her entire life.  As soon as she set down the piping hot food and drinks, the X-Men teens set upon it like ravenous wolves vying for a piece of small meat, not even bothering to use the plates and silverware set available next to the food.

“Hey, this pizza tastes kind of funky,” Bobby commented with his mouth full, a slice of pizza in each hand.

“He’s gotta point.  This stuff’s good, but stranger than a three-legged wolf in a henhouse,” Sam added as he took a swig from his soda can.  Or at least he thought it was soda before the blond-haired adolescent slightly sputtered at the taste.

“Hey, this ain’t soda!  It’s milk!!”

Abi was puzzled as she fed Lockheed some shrimp salad, making the pet dragon very ecstatic for the food, saying, “Of course it is.  Anything that isn’t water or coffee always has milk as its main component as a beverage of any sort.  And as for the pizza, I’m sorry, but the only ones we had in the freezer were deep-dish tuna, but it’s a popular topping in Megakat City.”

Tuna pizzas?” Roberto repeated in disbelief before giving his slice a very scrutinizing look, “Boy, I dunno for you cat guys, but this would never be considered as a pizza topping in our dimension!”

“This world is truly getting weirder and weirder by the hour,” groaned Piotr.

Kurt, Amara and Jamie just continued wolfing down more than their shares, as Kurt piped up, “Ah, what are you complaining about?  This is good!  I’ve never had tuna with pizza before!  I swear, I could eat this all day!”

“Like, for sure, I’m so totally grateful I’m vegetarian,” Kitty remarked as she gulped down her fruit cocktail.

Dr. Hackle’s eyes sparkled with life, with the curiosity and excitement of discovering something new and truly, breathtakingly wondrous, like a kitten.  Abi could have sworn she had never seen Dr. Hackle seem livelier and animated before ever since he learned of Chance’s death and Jake’s unfair persecution on the news.

“Please, tell me more about your world, Roberto!” Hackle requested gleefully as he reached for a slice of tuna pizza, “I have always been fascinated by the String Theory and M-Theory in physics, and now, I must thank you for making this old kat’s wildest dreams come true!  Please, tell me more!”

Dr. Hackle and Dr. Sinian listened with great interest as the X-Men, with each kid interrupting the other, retold all their adventures and the purpose of the X-Men.  Abi and Hackle learned about the human world, how it was similar and yet different to their world of Megakat City, and how they had arrived here by accident due to Forge’s invention.  Hackle and Sinian, like Jake, were incredibly amused and shocked to find out that their lives were displayed as a TV show back in the human world, but it soon melted into scientific interest and amazement as they saw each X-Man and X-Woman display their powers a bit.  Hackle was especially interested in the genius minds of Forge, Hank, and Kitty, and when he learned of their problem, he immediately leaped at the chance to help with the alternator.

Ach!  Why didn’t you say so before?!  My laboratory had many parts and materials at your whims!  I used to be a former weapons-designer at Puma-Dyne before I retired to this island, and I have many tools and robotic technology to help you with your plans!  I have equipment that Puma-Dyne can only dream of, and it is far better and fortunate that you X-Men had arrived here instead of the actual Puma-Dyne laboratories!  By all means, I’ll be glad to assist you in your alternator device in any way I can!  You may use anything you wish!”

“That’ll be great!” Forge exclaimed, “At least now all of our problems are solved!”

“At least for your problems, they are Forge,” Abi murmured with regretful sadness, “but Megakat City is still in danger from Dark Kat and the Alliance.  Earlier, Dr. Hackle was able to wiretap onto the private radio frequencies used for transmission back at the Enforcers’ headquarters, and from what we learned, Feral is increasing his Enforcers patrols because Dark Kat is planning to attack the city very soon in the near future, sooner than anyone had even anticipated.”

“What?!  Are you serious?!” Rogue gasped as the X-Men around her broke in hushed, nervous whispers.  Abi nodded morosely.

“But…but why?!  I thought Dark Kat and his henchmen just attacked Megakat City a month ago!  And with the Enforcers now on high alert, they would be foolish to think that Feral and his forces would not be better prepared for what they could use against them!” Ororo asked, troubled.  Jean frowned as she thought of something.

The red-haired telekinetic remarked, “Actually, now I can see why this entire fiasco with the ‘Invincible Alliance of Evil’ has been bugging me so much.  Dr. Sinian, Dark Kat is supposedly a criminal mastermind bent on taking over the city and controlling it like a criminal kingpin, a tyrant ruler so to speak, right?  Yet from what Jake has told us, he and Chance fought against Dark Kat many times before and they never were able to see Dark Kat use his army this ruthlessly and effectively.  Kurt even remarked how he saw the episode on how the last alliance between all the enemies of the SWAT Kats fell apart due to their conflicting, power-hungry egos and double-handed betrayals.  So why are they able to team up now?  And if they were really intent on wiping out Megakat City, then why didn’t they do so before when Chance…uh, when the Enforcers fought them last month?  I mean, to turn and run after they killed so many innocent civilians and by bombing and destroying half of city, the Enforcers could have easily been overwhelmed.  So, what makes this battle even more dangerous than the last one?”

“Actually, we recently learned something about that last attack, Ms. Grey.  Apparently, though it was not reported in the news and media, there was a hidden agenda to the siege, the one that led to the current, ruined state the city is in now,” Dr. Hackle provided.  Everyone, even Jake, tuned in with interest as the elderly kat continued.

“From what I had been able to deduce from eavesdropping on the private frequency of the Enforcers’ headquarters, Dark Kat’s destruction was but a mere ruse, a distraction.  While all the Enforcers and the SWAT Kats were busy trying to incapacitate them from destroying the city, some of Dark Kat’s creeplings along with Dr. Viper, Pastmaster and Hard Drive were able to make off with some items with no one the wiser.  With everyone’s attentions focused in on the battles, the Enforcers and the general public would be too distracted to trouble themselves over a few seemingly random thefts.  Yet when Feral found out that the robberies were committed by members of the alliance, he knew then that it was anything but trite and random.  It then made sense; the thefts were the real goal for the alliance, and Dark Kat’s brutal war on the city was just a way to ensure all the Enforcers would be too busy fighting against him and his forces.  And Feral was able to deduce that these goods must have some common link for something truly horrifying and destructive.  After all, if Dark Kat has such an interest in the materials, then it cannot be for anything good.  And it would explain why they retreated so quickly after the previous holocaust.  Since they now had the materials, Dark Kat needed time to use them for whatever plans he has, and by destroying the city with that series of cold-fusion bombs, it would seriously handicap the Enforcers and the city enough to cause chaos, preventing them from being able to effectively track down the evil and counter-attack.  With so many kats dead and the city in shambles, the Enforcers and City Council are too busy trying to maintain control and peace and keep this city together to do anything else.”

“Like, what exactly did they steal?” Kitty asked.

Hackle said wearily, “From what we learned, Dr. Viper stole a mutagen called ‘Katalyst-X’ from his old research facility which has the ability to transform organic material into new strains of genotypes, basically altering the DNA and structure itself, causing unnatural mutations, those not like the ones you all have experienced.  Before, Katalyst-X was used to create new strains of plants in order to help with diversifying the gene pool and creating new breeds that would be resistant to parasites and diseases, but with Dr. Viper’s twisted genius, I can only grimace at what he could do with such a powerful chemical.  And the Metallikats and Dark Kat’s creeplings were able to kill much of the staff and researchers back at Puma-Dyne Industries in order to make off with some very valuable nanotechnology, several advanced computer programs, and several tons of a very indestructible and impenetrable metal alloy, the same one I used to create my robots.  Yet the nanotechnology they stole was far advanced, enough to use to create all sorts of technological sabotage, hacking, and weaponry.  Hard Drive was able to use the circuit breaker to the Enforcers’ headquarters to take the Vertigo Beam from their storage safe.  You remember, Jake?  The one Turmoil used to keep the Enforcers at bay while her jets could terrorize the city?  It was a truly remarkable piece of machinery; it was designed to render anything electrical and electronic moot, so basically, any computer or mechanical system along with any engine could be rendered useless and lifeless in a mere second.  With such a weapon, no army can truly stand up to Dark Kat, especially since all the Enforcers use hi-tech circuitry in their weapons, guns, and vehicles, including their Enforcer tanks, jets, and helicopters.”

“Wait, what about the Pastmaster?” Piotr asked, “What exactly did he steal?”

“Not much but some relics, and I’m not exactly sure what to make of such a theft,” Abi confessed, “The Megakat City Museum has many more priceless and valuable artifacts stored in its display cases, some of which cannot be located in any other museum in the world!  But the Pastmaster stole some belongings that were holy prayer stones used by one of the pharaohs, Rama-Tut.”

“Let Remy get this straight,” Gambit said as he ticked off the facts with his fingers, “Dr. Viper steals a mutagen called ‘Katalyst-X’ that can mutate life-forms and anything organic, ‘specially plants, Hard Drive steals a weapon called the Vertigo Beam that can stall any airplane and make it useless, the Metallikats steal nanotechnology from Puma-Dyne along with the same metal alloys Dr. Hackle used to create them in the first place, and this Pastmaster and his mummies steal secular relics from Egypt?  Remy gotta say, this don’t really make much sense!”

“I know.  It certainly doesn’t add up,” Scott frowned thoughtfully, “and from what Kurt and Jamie told me about the alliance, we seem to be at a disadvantage.  They must have something truly desirable if they are all willing to put up with each other like this, so if this siege is going to be approaching soon, then it might truly be the one that ends everything.  In other words, it’s going to be the final blow.”

“I could not agree more, Mr. Summers,” Hackle added.

“Yeah, but if you ask me, Dark Kat doesn’t exactly seem to be playing with a full deck of cards,” Tabitha said, “I mean, why the interest in Megakat City?  What’s so special about this place?  I mean, he and the bad kats could have tried taking over the nation’s capitol or destroy the United Nations, but instead, he’s just currently focused on this city, as if there’s something special to him about it.”

“Yeah, what is wrong with Dark Kat?  You seem to know a lot about Dr. Viper, the Metallikats, and Hard-Drive.  Even Dr. Sinian knows a lot about Pastmaster from ancient texts!  And yet you don’t seem to know anything about Dark Kat or seem to have established a profile on him,” Amara pointed out.

Jake then answered, “Actually, it’s for good reason, Amara.  The Enforcers and public don’t know anything about Dark Kat.  It’s as if he never even existed.  There’s no record of him or his past life, whether or not he lived in the city, what he was, or how he lived before turning to crime.  Even when I joined the Enforcers at a young age, all I can recall is that he suddenly popped up into the public eye, causing mayhem and destruction with his creepling servants and said that he was the rightful ruler of the city and of all kat-kind, the true savior of the kat race and its future descendants.  We have tried hacking into the government records they keep on all citizens in the country along with Interpol’s main database, but we couldn’t find any leads.  Anything about Dark Crud is a complete mystery; it’s almost as if he’s not a normal kat.”

“So what do we do?  If Dark Kat’s going to destroy the city, we need to help them out,” Ray said.

“Don’t bother, Ray,” Jake said bitterly, “This isn’t your fight nor is it your problem.  It’s better if you guys just fix your alternator so that you can go back home to your world and forget about all this mess.  Don’t drag yourselves into something that you’ll all regret.”

“And what of yourself, Jake?” Abi asked the brown kat, frowning and looking slightly put off.

“I’ll be fine.”

“Jake, you know that wasn’t what we were referring to.  Megakat City is in danger of being wiped out,” Dr. Sinian retorted, pushing the subject.

Jake’s eyes went cold as he said disdainfully, “And how is that any problem of mine?”

Dr. Hackle’s eyes went soft with sorrow for the young kat as he said gently, “Razor…young Jacob…the city still needs you to help them to stop Dark Kat and the Invincible Alliance before things get worse.  You know you could very well be the main asset that could stop Dark Kat for good.  After all, no other kat has fought against them for so long, and with your expertise, you can truly assist the Enforcers and protect the city.  The Enforcers and the others may be able to provide a good barrage, but you may truly be the lone trump card that can turn the tide of the battle and stop the alliance before they kill even more kats.”

“I’m sorry, but you must actually think that I give a damn about them anymore,” Jake retorted with malice as he got up and left the table, incredibly heated.  Hackle then lost his temper as he shouted with gall at the SWAT Kat, slamming his frail, bony fist on the table.

“Jake, this isn’t about your grudge between yourself and Feral!  This isn’t even about Chance anymore!  Kats are going to die, Razor!  Dark Kat and his Alliance aren’t going to stop until they can demolish Megakat City to the ground, and even when that happens, they’ll still try to terrorize other cities and nations until Dark Kat achieves God knows whatever he’s planning!  Are you so willing to use your betrayals and grief as a self-righteous excuse to watch the other s suffer?!  You said earlier that you were still Razor, with or without the mask!  Well, the Razor I remember would have done the honorable thing and still defend those who cannot fight for themselves to the very end, even if it meant a great cost to himself!  Because he sincerely cared about the city and the innocents who reside there!”

“So in other words, I’m supposed to be the noble sacrifice that always has to do the right thing and never have faults and be allowed to grieve and feel hurt like everyone else?  I’m supposed to fight everyone’s battles, the very battles everyone else is too scared or hypocritical to do anything?”

“Yes.  After all, isn’t that why you became a vigilante in the first place?” Hackle highlighted flatly.

Jake’s eyes became molten steel as he shouted, “I’m not a god, Dr. Hackle!  I’m just a kat…a kat who’s just lost his best and only friend and watched him die!  A kat who was unfairly blamed for everything that went wrong in that battle and who was mocked, cursed and criticized by every damned kat in the country!  A kat who can’t ever go back to the life he used to live once before!  A kat who wasn’t even allowed to grieve and heal like everyone else from the fact that he had to watch his partner die for doing the right thing and to only be given the short end of the stick!  I didn’t care about receiving rewards or thanks, but I became a SWAT Kat to help catch whatever Feral and his Enforcers let slip between their claws, to find justice outside the law whenever it failed, and to do whatever I could to protect this city because I used to care!  Emphasis on ‘used to’! But a fat lot of good it did for me!    I would give up everything, my life, my past heroics, my well-being, to have Chance back, to have my buddy here again!  Now I’m left with nothing but shame, despair, and the anger at the fact that Feral is gloating over my downfall, the downfall that son-of-a-bitch caused in the first place!!”

At the end of this, Clawson became so mad, he hurriedly stormed out though the front door, burning with the intensity of a thousand fires.

“But you have to help them!!” Jamie shouted at Jake, “You’re supposed to save them, to protect them!!  You’re their hero!!”

“Things change, kid,” Jake said over his shoulder harshly before slamming the door, “and don’t go believing everything you see on TV.”

There was a frustrated and uncomfortable silence as Jake left.  Forge uneasily coughed as he left the table, murmuring, “I better go work on fixing the alternator.”

Hank and Dr. Hackle left with the young mutant inventor towards the robotics laboratory as Jean and Xavier made a move to follow Razor, but surprising everyone, Logan beat the two telepaths to it as he said gruffly to the Professor, “I’ll talk to Jake, Chuck, but don’t expect any miracles from the hairball.”

Xavier could have honestly said that Wolverine would have been the last person he would have chosen to help Jake with his grieving process.  Yet he didn’t bother arguing as the gruff mutant left through the front doors.  Still, somewhat worried for both Jake and Logan, Xavier waited for them to return.  He waited when the students finished dinner.  He waited when the hallway clock rang eleven chimes.  And he continued to wait until he needed to turn in for the night due to his fatigue and for the fact that he didn’t wish to disturb the peacefully sleeping students.  Yet it was a few hours afterward when Logan returned back into the living room…alone.

 

 

The following morning, at the crack of dawn, with the sky-blue hue of brightness filtering through the sky-light of the laboratory, some of the X-Men began to stir and wake up.  Since they were spending the night, and there weren’t enough guest rooms for everyone, Dr. Hackle and Dr. Sinian decided that the Xavier and the staff of the Institute should sleep on the beds in the spare rooms while the students rested in the living room on the sleeping bags and blankets they had in supply.  Remy and Kurt were humorously sprawled out upon their sleeping bags in awkward and chaotic positions on the floor, drooling and snoring like fat dogs.  Some of the veterans were with Abi as she prepared coffee and bagels as breakfast for the X-Men along with Jean, Scott, Storm, the Professor and Logan.

Forge then came running in excitedly, cheering and making such a joyous ruckus, he couldn’t help but awaken every one of the X-Men in the living room.

“Someone please shut him up,” groaned Tabitha as she pulled the pillow over her head.

“Lockheed, kill Forge for us, and we’ll give you an entire bag of treats if we get back home,” Piotr added as he wearily tried to rub the sleep out of his baggy eyes.

“You guys!  I fixed the alternator!  I fixed the alternator!!!  It works!  It works now!  We can go back home!!  We can go back home to our own dimension!!!

“What?!  You’re serious?!  Are you sure it works, that it’s not gonna backfire?!” Scott asked eagerly as the announcement was enough to cause all of the half-asleep X-students to jump from the floor and run towards the inventor.

Hank smiled as he said, “No chance of that, Scott.  I triple-checked the modifications along with Dr. Hackle, and Forge has even tried opening a sample dimensional rift in Hackle’s lab.  It fully works, and considering that the coordinates were already preset before it malfunctioned, Forge and Dr. Hackle were able to calculate the coordinates that would send us back to our own dimension from once we came from.  So we can return back to our mansion at any time now.”

“That’s the best news Remy has heard all day,” sighed Gambit as the other X-Men began to cheer and exclaim in joy and extreme relief.  They could now go home!

All was euphoric until there was a yell of surprise from the hallway and Hackle’s research lab, a scream of dread, and before anyone could react to it, Dr. Hackle ran out as awkwardly and as fast as his frail limbs could allow him.

“It’s gone!  It’s gone!” the elderly kat cried out in alarm and distress, nearly at a loss, nearly frantically babbling.

“What?!  What’s gone?!!” Abi asked urgently as the other X-Men started to pester the professor with questions and confused looks.

“It’s Project B-110, Abi!  The black hole grenade!” wailed Dr. Hackle.

For several seconds, it was all just hushed whispers until Tabitha looked around the living room and realized one member of their party was missing.  She queried loudly above the din, “Hey, has anyone seen Razor?”

Tabby spoke the truth; Jake was no where to be seen.  Logan gave a small sniff of the air, but the only scents he picked up were Dr. Hackle and Dr. Sinian’s.  Any trace of Clawson’s in the room was cold and stale.  Jake must have remained outside after their talk and didn’t even bother coming in as he left and hightailed it out of the island.

“I don’t believe this!” raged Bobby, “I still didn’t get a chance to drive his Aquain tank-thingy!”

“I think a missing bomb and Jake being gone is a little more important, Ice-Cube!” snapped Logan, raising a few eyebrows, “Can’t you put it all together?!  Damn it, I should have known better than to let the hairball out of my sight!  I swear, I shoulda dragged his smelly hide over here by the scruff of his neck in the first place instead of letting him go off!  The flea-ridden furball’s now probably going to use the weapon!”

“But that’s impossible for it to be used as a weapon!” Dr. Hackle feebly insisted, “The black-hole grenade was so unstable as a model, we were never able to perfect it here at Puma-Dyne!  At best, the grenade is only able to fully create a black hole void in the time-space continuum large enough to encapsulate a space with a diameter of a hundred meters or so!!  Yes, it will have severe enough consequences that it will literally suck and drag anything towards it by its immense pull and crush anything it swallows!  But due to the artificial and unnatural gravitational forces, a black hole being at this level of atmosphere and space would cause it to haphazardly collapse onto itself within minutes, so it’ll expire by itself!  In other words, the black hole generator isn’t dangerous enough to be a weapon of mass destruction due to its ineffectiveness!  Yes, if kats were within range and close to its vicinity, they will surely be sucked into the portal and be crushed within the rip in space, but it wouldn’t be as destructive as say a nuclear bomb!”

“Why the hell not?!  A black hole?!  That definitely sounds like a pretty bad thing if it ever gets set off in public, Doc!” Tabitha protested.

Abi clarified gently, “It’s because a weapon can only be considered of mass destruction if it can destroy a vast amount of civilians and level down an entire city, basically, anything that leads to massive and long-term consequences.  The thing is, regardless of how scary the grenade sounds, it couldn’t even destroy a city if the person detonating it wished it so!  At best, it would only be able to destroy an entire block…but not a city.  And like Dr. Hackle said, it wouldn’t exist for very long enough to do anything lasting.  Basically, when the black hole closes up, there will only be a crater of where the grenade was set off, but nothing permanently marked into the environment with no side-effects.  It would be as if nothing happened except for the crater.”

“I see what you mean,” Forge said, “I mean, why use a black-hole grenade when you could just wipe a city out with a nuclear warhead?  Or something else ten times more powerful?”

“But then why would Jake take that grenade from Puma-Dyne if he was intending to destroy the city with it?” Bobby asked, “It doesn’t make sense.  I thought Jake was supposed to be smarter than that.”

Scott suddenly had a cold feeling of shock grasp his heart as a possibility slowly dawned on him as he said, “I don’t think Jake was planning to destroy the city with it…”

“Maybe he’s trying to get revenge solely on Feral and his Enforcers,” Ray suggested, “I mean, if I get my best friend shot thanks to some overgrown, mangy fur-ball, I’d hunt him down and kill him too.  So maybe Jake would set the grenade under the Enforcer building and kill off all the soldiers there or something.”

Jamie turned on Ray angrily, defending, “Shut up!!  Jake would never do that!!  He’s a hero!!”

Jean then added, “I agree with Multiple.  As much as I could sense Jake being hurt, scared, despondent, and angry at Feral, I don’t think he’d actually kill him…or endanger the entire city while he’s at it.  After all, what about Callie Briggs and Felina Feral?  He wouldn’t be so narrow-minded to drag anyone innocent in his grudge against the commander.”

Ray wasn’t swayed much as he persisted, “Oh, come on!  He said he’d do anything to avenge Chance and get back at Feral!  Even if he didn’t kill a lot of other kats, Jake would still try to get back at him in any way he can!”

“Can you blame Razor, though?” Sam asked in a hard voice, “I mean, Feral did a lot of pretty nasty stuff to him.  And Jake’s exposed to the public and can’t go back to where he used to be, now that he lost his partner and best friend.”

Piotr then reminded them, “But you are forgetting one thing: Feral will be with his Enforcers and the city’s defense teams when they try to stop Dark Kat and his alliance when they fight and clash each other.  Jake couldn’t possibly use the bomb there unless he wanted to kill everyone around Feral.”

A sudden thought crossed Rogue’s mind at this when she slowly voiced, “Wait a minute…what if…Feral isn’t Jake’s target for that grenade?”

Kitty frowned as she asked, “But, like, who else could he possibly use that grenade on?”

Storm broke in, interrupting, “Children, we’re getting a bit off of the discussion.  We need to track down Jake before he uses the weapon to endanger other innocent civilians.”

“I’m telling you, he would never do that!!” Jamie raged at the weather-witch.

“No, Ms. Munroe, it is not as you say,” Hackle continued wearily, “The grenade may be dangerous, but it is too much of an overkill for one person and too little of a threat to endanger Megakat City or what’s left of it, considering if a kat was even lucky enough to know how to properly use it.  Even luckier if the black-hole would even work to begin with.  That’s why the army and Enforcers passed up on such a device for military purposes.  It doesn’t pose much of a threat except to…”

Dr. Hackle paused, frowning at the sudden thought.

“‘Except to’ what, Dr. Hackle?” Hank persisted, growing concerned.

The aged scientist’s eyes widened in horror as he exclaimed, “Oy Gevalt!  Razor wouldn’t!!”

“Wouldn’t what?!” asked Amara.

Hackle wheezed, “That was another fault of the black-hole grenade, young one!  In order for the weapon to be set off, it had to be done manually!  We were never able to design it so that you could simply set if off using an electromagnetic pulse or a radio frequency from a remote control or computer signal like most weapons are!  The design for the bomb was too unstable to even create such a method!  So the problem is, someone has to physically set off the grenade to even cause the black-hole to appear!”

Roberto then frowned, asking, “Wait…but if it needs a person to set it off, then how does that person prevent himself from getting sucked into the hole once it detonates?”

Dr. Hackle tragically looked at the Brazilian mutant before shaking his head, replying sorrowfully, “They can’t.”

The Professor and the X-Men elders then suddenly realized what Dr. Hackle was saying, and it clicked together in place.  Jamie gasped in shock, and Kurt blurted out, “Neit!  Jake wouldn’t!  He wouldn’t!”

Logan then look troubled as he emphasized, “He would, Elf…’cause Jake’s got nothing else to lose.”

Next Chapter

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