As the two SWAT Kats slept, the third snuck out of the room. Tai crept through the halls, making sure he made no noise louder than Chance’s snoring. Tai slipped through the hall to the hangar, ready to continue his training.
I will… I will prove that I belong, he thought as he scaled down the ladder into the hangar. He flipped on the lights and hunted for the remote control, finding it on one of the worktables. The red kat quickly changed into his flight-suit, just to give it an authentic feel. He walked down to where the simulator was and hopped in, securing himself and starting the machine.
Jake awoke as the sun beamed into the window of the bedroom. He put his paws to his ears and pulled out the earplugs that he had to wear now and then.
“Chance, you snore like a buzz-saw,” he whispered under his breath. The brown kat looked and saw the third bed was empty. The brown kat got up and walked to his dresser, pulling out and putting on his overalls.
We had a tough day yesterday. He should still be asleep, the brown kat thought as he got out of the bedroom and walked down the stairs. Just as he was about to enter the kitchen, he saw a light at the end of the hall, coming from the door to the hangar.
I know I shut it off before we left, Jake thought as he opened the door and climbed down the ladder. He looked around, wondering if they had any nighttime intruders when he saw the missing kat. He was in his flight suit; curled up into the seat of the simulator, head lying on his arms as he slept. Jake moved quietly to the kat’s side, looking at him sleep.
Poor kid. He must have been doing his own training, Jake thought with a smile on his face. He looked around and found the remote control for the machine. The brown kat picked up the control and hit the button for the scores. A list flashed on screen for the recent missions.
“97 failed missions and…” Jake stopped when he saw the last ones. “3 complete. 0% casualties.” Jake looked closely at the last mission, seeing it was on the ‘Speed of Heat’ setting.
I guess Tai really wants to prove himself, Jake thought as he looked at the sleeping red kat. He reached out to wake him, but stopped, thinking it would be better to let him sleep.
Jake turned away and left the hangar, a smile on his face. He wandered into the kitchen when he heard rustling on the second floor.
Chance’s up, he thought as he began to dig though the fridge, pulling out two milk cans as the burly kat appeared, dressed in his overalls.
“Hey buddy,” Chance said as he swiped a can from Jake’s hand. “What are we gonna do today? I was thinking the flight simulator.”
“No, he doesn’t need to do that,” Jake answered.
“What do ya mean?”
“The kid snuck out and trained himself on it,” Jake answered, sipping his milk.
“Really? How’d he do?”
“He did 100 missions,” Jake reported. “He failed 97, but passed the last three. The last one was even on the Speed of Heat setting.”
“Awesome, I knew the kid could do it,” Chance said happily.
“That’s not the best part,” Jake said with a sly smile. “His time was only 30 seconds behind your best.”
Chance’s smile disappeared immediately.
“The kid might catch up with you,” Jake teased. “He might even beat you.”
Chance crushed the can in his hand.
“That’s not gonna happen,” the burly kat announced.
Jake couldn’t help laughing at his friend, seeing this was the first time he had ever had this kind of threat.
Chance marched off to the hangar and found the red kat sleeping in his flight suit. Chance shook him till he woke.
“Uhh…. Chance?” Blaze asked, groggy from his interrupted sleep.
“Yeah. What are you doin’ down here?” Chance asked.
“Umm, getting ready to train,” Blaze answered, giving a smile.
Chance observed the red kat.
“Cool. We’ll go through the course before work, so get changed,” Chance responded. He turned away and walked back into the house.
“Chance, you’re gonna go all-out, aren’t you?” Jake asked when he saw the look on the tabby’s face.
“Yep,” Chance answered with a sly smile.
“We all know you’re the best pilot, why do you have to drill it in his head?”
“I want him to know,” Chance answered. “There’s no way he’s gonna beat me.”
Jake shook his head in disappointment. He had never seen Chance be this competitive before. He looked up and saw Tai, ready to go and train. Setting down his milk, Jake joined the tabby and the red kat outside. The three lined up at the beginning of the course, ready to win.
“Ready…GO!” Chance shouted, him and Jake shooting out to an early lead.
Tai started dashing after them, intent on catching up.
I will prove myself! I will prove I belong! Tai repeatedly thought as he chased after them, tapping into all the power in his body.
Chance looked back, seeing the red kat was beginning to gain. The three reached the tires and began leaping from one to the other. Jake got a lead on the other two, Chance being in second and Tai in third.
The kid is getting better, Jake thought with a smirk as he raced towards the bars, the two closely behind him. I just hope Chance doesn’t get too competitive.
The three got to the bars and crossed them quickly. By now, the three were neck and neck. Chance rushed ahead and got to the rope, swinging over the pool and to the ground. Tai got there right after him and swung to the other side. The two raced each other for the finish. Chance looked over and saw the red kat beside him, rather than his usual partner. Both used their maximum speed, trying to beat each other when they passed the finish line at the same time.
Tai stopped, falling to his knees from running so much. Chance watched the red kat pant, him doing the same.
What am I doing? Chance asked himself. I’m supposed to train him, not compete.
Tai looked to the ground, gasping for as much air when he saw movement out of the corner of his eye. He looked and saw Chance, hand extended to help him up.
“Th.. Thanks,” Tai said as he accepted it, being pulled to his feet.
“No prob,” Chance responded with a smile. “You’re getting a lot better. You might even win next time.”
“Thanks, but I don’t think I’m gonna get that good,” Tai responded.
“You will, it just takes time,” Jake said, appearing behind the two. “Chance and I have been doing this for a while, but you’ll get better.”
“You guys are really rubbing off on me,” Tai commented. “Before, I would have given up right away. But now, I want to do my best and prove myself.”
“That’s good to hear,” Chance said as he hit Tai on the back. “Come on, let’s get some grub.”
“Yeah, I’m starved,” Jake responded as he started walking towards the house.
“Food! Music to my ears,” Tai said as he followed the two. Even though he felt a great pain in his legs, the red kat couldn’t help but feel a great sense of accomplishment.
Callie yawned as she pulled her car into the City Hall parking lot. It was normal for her to get to work early, but the lack of sleep from watching a horror movie was taking its toll on her.
“A haunted house and a possessed doll,” she said as she got out of the vehicle and walked across the ground to the building. “No wonder I couldn’t sleep. That’s the last time I watch Shadow House.” Callie walked through the doors of the building, greeting the security guard. She continued to the elevator and took it to her office.
“Another day of work.” She sighed as she laid her brief case on her desk. The deputy mayor strolled to the window of her office and looked out to the city. A cloudy sky loomed over the city, giving it a peaceful look.
We haven’t had any problems since that Madkat incident, she thought as she stared out over the city. I’m glad that I had to go out of town that day, but I wish we could finally have peace one day.
She was about to turn around when she saw something strange. A dark cloud seemed to be coming closer and descending, a low humming emitting from it.
“What is that?” she asked herself, only to get her answer.
That’s not a cloud. It’s… bugs! Giant bugs! she realized. The deputy mayor ran to her phone and hit the speed dial button for the Enforcers. After getting a ring for a good while, it was finally answered.
“Hello, Enforcer Headquarters. How can I help you?” a voice asked.
“I need to talk to Feral, NOW!” Callie answered urgently.
“May I ask who’s calling?” the voice replied.
“This is the deputy mayor, Callie Briggs,” Callie answered again, getting impatient.
“Oh, of course. Hold please,” the voice said, followed by soft music.
I’m seriously going to suggest they hire a better desk person, she thought.
The music stopped, finally connected.
“This is Feral. What seems to be the trouble, Ms. Briggs?” Feral answered in his usual, gruff voice.
“Commander! There’s bugs, thousands of bugs, heading right for City Hall!” Callie answered.
“Right. The Enforcers will be right there,” the commander stated, followed up by a tone.
The deputy mayor hung up the phone and looked out the window, seeing the massive army of insects getting closer and closer.
There’s no choice, she thought as she reached into her brief case, pulling out a small, white, triangle shaped communicator. She hit the button, hoping to get a quick answer.
Chance fell back in his table seat, hands on his stomach.
“Man, that is good!” he announced with a smile.
Jake shoved his fork into his pancakes and left it there, falling back as well.
“You got that right, big buddy,” Jake responded, picking up his coffee and taking a sip of the strong, but cream filled liquid.
Tai emerged from the kitchen, another plate of pancakes and bacon resting in his right paw.
“I made a fresh batch. You guys want any more?” the red kat asked.
Chance immediately shot up, fork and knife in hand.
“Load me up, buddy!” the burly kat answered.
“No thanks. Anymore and I’ll be as big as Chance,” Jake joked.
Chance gave him a deadly glare, but turned his attention back to his plate when he saw Tai put four more pancakes. His mouth watered as he dove into his food, Jake giving him a questioning look.
“Jeez, pace yourself, big buddy,” Jake said as he watched the burly kat. “You already had four plates, leave some for Tai.”
“It’s alright Jake,” Tai responded with a smile, sitting down and putting some food on his plate. “I love to cook, and it’s always good when you cook for a friend.”
“Yeah. Besides, I’m always like this after a work out,” Chance said as he finished up his plate.
Their ears perked up when they heard a car pull into their yard. Jake stood up and walked to the front windows, seeing it was a familiar dump truck.
“Great, we have company,” Jake said sarcastically.
Just then, the three heard the familiar buzzing of the alarm in the Hangar.
“Crud! Perfect timing!” Chance moaned.
“We can’t go, not with those two around,” Jake stated.
“Go, guys,” Tai said, standing up and clearing the table.
“What?” Chance asked.
“You guys have a job to do, so go on,” Tai explained. “I’ll stay here and cover for you.”
“But, you’re a SWAT Kat too,” Jake responded.
“Not yet; I’m still in training,” Tai replied. “You guys go. Just promise that I can go with you next time.”
“Done,” Chance said as he got up. “You’ll come with us next time, I promise. Let’s go, buddy!”
“Right,” Jake replied as the two raced for the Hangar. They climbed down the ladder and reached the phone, Jake picking up the receiver.
“What is it, Miss Briggs?” Jake asked.
“Razor, thank god!” Callie’s voice said. “There’s a swarm of giant bugs about to attack City Hall. The Enforcers are coming, but I don’t think they’ll be able to handle it on their own.”
“Got it. Get to a safe place; we’ll be there soon,” Jake responded, hanging up the phone.
“What’s the problem?” Chance asked.
“Giant bugs,” Jake answered. “Sounds like something Dr. Viper would do.”
Chance cringed at the answer. “Great, why is it always bugs?” he asked.
“At least we’ll be able to squash a few,” Jake mentioned.
“What are we waiting for?” Chance said enthusiastically as he and Jake raced to the lockers, changing into the SWAT Kats.
The two rushed to the Turbokat, hopped in, and shot out of the Hangar towards City Hall and an army of insects.
Outside of MegaKat City, standing on the edge of the swamp, Viper watched as Enforcer units raced down the streets towards the City Hall. He grinned as he heard sirens pierce the silence.
“Jussst asss I planned,” the villain said as he rubbed his hands together.
A loud rumbling stole his attention as he looked to find its source. He finally saw a familiar red and black jet burst through the sky, heading towards the same destination as the Enforcers.
“No, it’sss better than I planned,” Viper corrected. “With thossse pesssky ssSWAT Katsss out of the way, nothing can ssstop me!”
The lizard traveled back to his lair and quickly went to the underground lab, where three 6-foot centipedes waited for him. Their big, red eyes watched him appear as their long, black, spiked legs gripped the ground.
“Come my petsss, we have a little journey to make,” Dr. Viper said as he picked up the vial containing his virus. He motioned for his creations to follow him as he slithered to the sewer pipe, climbing in and walking through it. The doctor reminded himself over and over about the turns he had to take to get to the MegaKat Water Treatment Center. But, at the same time, he hoped that the one bug he entrusted his message to would survive the soon-to-come maelstrom of laser fire and missiles.
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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.