The next day, everybody met at HQ as promised. As usual, Fred was all business, Daphne was trying not to get lost, Velma was deep in thought, and Scooby and Shaggy were contemplating what they were going to eat next. They got out of the Mystery Machine, and the guards at Enforcer HQ felt they were caught off guard because they weren’t used to seeing humans or weird-looking vans. But, it didn’t take long for them to catch on when they caught sight of Scooby.
“We normally don’t let dogs in, but seeing as it is him, we will this time,” said one of the guards to Shaggy. “Just you watch him to ensure he doesn’t touch anything. Well, unless it’s a vital clue.”
“Promise that, Scooby?” Shaggy asked.
“Right, Shaggy!” Scooby announced.
“And, just to be sure you stay on task, here’s a Scooby snack for you.” Daphne took one of the famous biscuits and tossed it to Scooby, who gladly began to eat it.
“What do one of those taste like?” one of the guards asked.
“It’s got a bit of a caramel-like flavor to it,” Shaggy replied as the group walked inside. “It’s actually developed to be consumed by both dogs and humans.”
Inside HQ, Fred took the time to ask the first question. “I never did ask you SWAT Kats how you found us or the warehouse Mr. Jenkins runs,” he said.
“It seemed odd to us there would be a fighter jet making a landing in the middle of the night,” Velma added, “but then again, we didn’t know who it was.”
“That’s understandable,” said T-Bone. “The Turbokat is no ordinary jet.”
“In fact,” Razor added, “we actually built that jet out of discarded military parts and weapons you might see in a salvage yard.”
“You built that out of spare parts?” Velma exclaimed. “Amazing!”
“There’s tons of things you can build with that stuff. Anyways, you asked how we found you. The correct answer is that T-Bone and I were on patrol in the city, although it was after we sent Dr. Viper to prison.”
“By that point,” T-Bone put in, “our sensors were detecting the same armored car you saw, since it was driving at night with its lights off. I began to wonder if the crooks had something to hide.”
“So T-Bone and I landed the jet best we could. We then opened the door, expecting to see crooks, suspecting somebody might have been smuggling some sort of contraband. Instead, we found you.”
“That’s because we were trying to get a better look at the car so we could report it to the police,” Fred explained. “Unfortunately, it was too dark to see, but we knew it was an armored car holding a lot of money. It just happened to be counterfeit.”
“And, probably the worst counterfeit money I’ve ever seen,” Felina put in. “They’re all accurate duplications except for the sports decorations.”
“Whoever the counterfeiter is, they must enjoy sports.”
“Or they just thought it would be funny.”
Since Mr. Jenkins was also asked to be there, Felina turned to him and asked, “Do you know who might possibly be trying to run you out of business? I can’t imagine you sabotaging your own company.”
“That’s always been in the family; I can’t let them down by closing up shop,” said Mr. Jenkins. “I can tell you that I constantly am getting offers from people who want to buy me out. I keep saying no because the business has been in the family for 150 years.”
“Really? That long?” Daphne put in.
“Yes. That long.”
“Here’s a list of the people trying to buy me out.” Mr. Jenkins handed Felina a list that had three specific names on it: Dale Dublin, Morty Michaels, and Jack Jerky. She studied the list alongside Lenny, who seemed to instantly remember all three from a previous case he solved on his own. He began to scribble notes down on a notepad.
“Why do they want to buy you out?” Velma asked.
“I think it’s so that they can either put their own business in, or it’s because they want to use it for their own criminal schemes.”
“How do you know they’re all criminals?”
“They live just down the road from me, and they swore revenge on me after I turned them into the police.”
“What were they doing then?”
“Smuggling, of course. At that time, though, it wasn’t the counterfeit money; it was vodka.”
“Vodka?” Scooby exclaimed.
“Vodka?” Shaggy repeated.
“Why would they be smuggling vodka?” Fred added.
“I don’t know, kids, but they’ll try anything. I think they’re just jealous of me because I’ve been a successful businessman and they haven’t.”
“Have they tried to go into business?”
“They have, but it was all stuff nobody wanted to buy.”
“What a waste!” Scooby interjected.
“There’s always going to be people stupid enough to drink that,” Lenny spoke up, “but in this town, nobody drinks it.”
“Why is that, Mr. Ringtail?” asked Velma.
“Everybody hates the smell of it. I hate the smell of it.”
“So do we,” said Razor. “It’s gross!”
Later, the three prime suspects were going through interrogation, but the Enforcers were going through hours of questioning with no luck whatsoever. The SWAT Kats, meanwhile, were giving Mystery, Inc. a tour of their salvage yard, while answering their questions about how the late Commander Ulysses Feral was always after them and blaming them for everything, trying to get them in jail since he had to go strictly by the book, but ultimately was the one responsible for the criminals terrorizing Megakat City.
“And so, if he had let you kill Dark Kat as you intended, you probably wouldn’t be having to live double lives as superheroes,” Shaggy concluded. “Yes?”
“Yes; that’s right, Shaggy,” T-Bone replied. “Everything has a purpose, though.”
“What do you make of it, Lenny?” Felina asked the comedian-turned-detective.
“I’m not sure yet,” Lenny replied. “They all kept denying any knowledge of the counterfeit money, and they all kept saying Jenkins was an idiot to not sell his business. They admitted to being guilty of the vodka smuggling, though. Given the nature of what the kids said about the armored car, though, I do have a feeling that just one of them is behind it.”
“What makes you think that?”
“Dublin says he was at the golf course on the day in question, Michaels was bowling, and Jerky was throwing darts at the bar. Obviously, they’re all into sports of sorts, and it had to have inspired the stupid act of making all the Presidents look like sports athletes. Jenkins also said he’s being bothered by phone calls from the three of them, but he usually just lets the answering machine get it. ‘Thank goodness for caller ID,’ he said.”
“What I can’t understand is why one, two, or all three of them, whichever it is, is so desperate to sell vodka in this town.”
“It sounds silly, but do you suppose they’re trying to run their own family business?”
“If they are, then it’s an example of bad parenting. I mean, I may have been the wacko comedian everybody will solely remember because I let Madkat’s soul possess me, but never did I ever drink, smoke, or do any of those drugs.”
“You just thought it should have been you instead of Litterbin?”
“Exactly.” Lenny paused to take a sip of water from the bottle he was drinking out of, and then continued writing down some notes.
Meanwhile, Mr. Jenkins was busy deleting the answering machine’s messages from Dublin, Michaels, and Jerky, all of which were still wanting to buy him out. What was left to be answered was why were they wanting to sell vodka so bad, and where the counterfeit bills would fit into this.
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