It didn’t take the SWAT Kats too long to return to the museum. They landed in the empty parking lot just as Feral landed nearby in his chopper. They walked together up the stairs of the museum and were met by the night security guard and Dr. Sinian, who Feral had notified of their imminent arrival.
They slipped in and said nothing until they were securely behind Dr. Sinian’s locked office door.
“Here, Dr. Sinian,” T-Bone said as he handed over the bloody sword.
“Oh my!” she exclaimed, going to get a rag to wipe the blade off then setting it on a side board out of the way. She would put it back later. “So, can you tell me what happened tonight?” she asked.
T-Bone didn’t speak, so Razor and Feral told her what had gone on in Megakat Park and T-Bone’s part in it.
Sinian’s eyes widened in stunned amazement, her eyes drifting toward the silent tabby during the explanation.
“I see. It appears your legacy has made itself known, T-Bone. I fear Razor is correct….. the medallion may very well hold the key to your past,” she said solemnly.
T-Bone glanced up from the floor he’d been studying. “I know you’re right, doc. It just scares the hell out of me, but I had already decided earlier today that I needed to know what was going on before this emergency pushed the point.” He sighed in resignation.
Slowly, he pulled the medallion from out of his G-suit, the chain still around his neck, and let it lay on his chest.
Feral leaned a little closer to stare at the strange metal curiously. He began to reach forward to touch it when T-Bone stopped him with his paw.
“No one can touch it but me, Commander,” he said firmly.
Feral frowned but didn’t push the matter. “So, where did this come from?” he asked.
Sighing deeply, T-Bone told Feral the story of his past or as much of it as he knew.
The Commander gave a low whistle of amazement and stared at his usually troublesome opponent with new eyes.
“So, you really aren’t from around here, and this medallion might have the key to your past?” he asked slowly.
“That’s what we think, and the fact that I apparently changed appearance in the park says it’s much more than it seems,” T-Bone admitted.
“Then it looks like you’ll have to bite the bullet as it were and allow this thing to tell you what’s going on. That’s if I understand what you’re getting at, Dr. Sinian,” Feral said cautiously, looking over at her.
“Yes, everything seems to be pointing at this being a memory tool of some kind. Once T-Bone ‘tunes’ into it, we hope it will impart the information about his past to him,” Dr. Sinian said, hopeful that was true.
“So, what do you think I need to do?” T-Bone asked nervously.
“I would guess the same thing you did the first time….. just hold it in your palm and allow it to do what it needs to,” Dr. Sinian advised.
“We’ll watch you, buddy. If it seems something bad is happening, we’ll try and break the spell,” Razor offered encouragingly.
“Thanks, Razor,” T-Bone said then took a deep breath and let it out slowly. He reached up and took the medallion in his paw and waited. He tried to let his mind relax but he was too scared.
For more than five minutes nothing happened. T-Bone frowned and opened his palm.
“That’s funny, nothing’s changed. Last time it went from cold to warm quickly. What’s wrong?” he muttered confused.
Razor thought back to the last time T-Bone got anything from the Medallion. Dr. Sinian was doing the same thing, and they both came up with the same answer.
“Blood!” they said in unison.
“Remember, T-Bone? You cut your palm on it because you were holding it too tightly,” Dr. Sinian went on to say, surprised she and Razor had remembered the same thing.
T-Bone blinked behind his mask and did as asked. He squeezed his paw tightly until he felt the sting then the medallion went warm and the present world vanished from his eyes replaced by the vision of his mother. Though startled, he fought to hold still and keep his mind open to her.
She smiled tenderly at him and began to speak.
“My son, if you are seeing me through the medallion then you are old enough to accept your heritage. Listen closely as I tell you who and what you are,” she said warmly. “Try to relax as best you can, a great deal of information must be force fed you quickly because time has run out. You will be exhausted but will have very little time to rest. Listen closely……”
T-Bone watched and listened as his mother showed him a fantastic place and told him of the war that was being waged and what his part he now played in it. The most important thing she imparted froze his soul with raw fear.
“No, I’m just a pilot! I can’t do this thing all by myself!” he objected, wishing he could just run away.
His mother sighed, a look of infinite sadness filling her eyes. “My son, I would give all I am to protect you from this. I would have allowed you to live your life in that world without knowing anything of mine but your adopted world is part of this, and there is no going back. You must take up your destiny or we are all lost,” she said gently.
T-Bone swallowed his fear and looked away for a long moment. His mother was right; he couldn’t just pretend the war wasn’t his concern. He’d never backed down from a fight, and he wouldn’t begin now. He took a deep breath and settled himself. His heart still hammered with fear, but he would do what was necessary for the sake of all that he held dear.
“Alright, tell me what I must do,” he said flatly.
His mother smiled gratefully and proudly then briefed him.
When she said farewell, he felt himself falling, his vision darkening around the edges. Strong arms caught his swaying form before he slid from the chair they had placed him. A bottle of water was pushed into his paws.
Blinking rapidly and trying to return to the present, T-Bone blindly drank the water gratefully. He didn’t know how long he’d been ‘gone’, but his mouth was very dry.
“How long was I ‘gone’?” he asked, hoarsely.
“More than three hours. We were beginning to get concerned,” Razor said, staring into his face anxiously.
T-Bone looked around and found the others were sitting in chairs in a semi-circle around him. Razor and Feral sat at either side of him with Dr. Sinian facing him. They eyed him warily, afraid of what he would tell them.
“Okay, there’s a lot she told me, but I’ll just give you the highlights that you’ll need to know,” he said heavily, swallowing more water before starting.
“Beyond the portal is a land called Alaria. My mother and father are Queen and consort. Long before I was born and when my mother was young, my mother’s people visited other worlds through their magical portals. They do not age as we do, so they live centuries. One day, my mother visited this world, met a handsome young male that took her fancy. They fell in love, and my mother took him back to her world where his life was extended. There world is one that lives side by side with nature and magic is all they know. It is made up of two races, the Dark and the Light Kingdoms of Fae. There was no poverty or want in this world, but there was one sad problem. For a long lived race, they breed very slowly but as recently as a century ago in our time, no kittens were being born. They were forced to go to other worlds to breed then return to Alaria with their kittens. This is what my mother and father did to conceive me.” T-Bone paused to drink more water then glanced at his friend.
“Remember when I told you I had no clue how old I was, Razor?” he asked quietly.
“Yeah. I take you are much older than you seem,” his partner said cautiously.
T-Bone snorted in amusement, “Though I appeared to be a kitten barely six months old to those who found me, in reality I was already about twenty years old in your time.”
The three gaped at him in stunned amazement. It was Razor who managed to speak first.
“Wow! You look pretty good for fifty years old, buddy.”
His partner couldn’t help but chuckle at that. “Yeah, and I don’t feel a second past twenty either. Anyway, to continue…… for centuries the two sides coexisted with only the occasional petty skirmish then one day the Dark King decided he wanted to rule all of Alaria. No one’s certain if he’s gone insane or not since no one can get close enough to him to find out. He plunged Alaria into a bloody war that raged for most of my infancy. When my father was killed, my mother knew she had to protect me. One night she slipped away and went through a portal that hadn’t yet been taken by the Dark King and brought me here. She hated leaving me but knew there was no choice, then returned to fight.” T-Bone sighed, a flash of anguished loss flicking across his face for a moment.
“Oh, T-Bone, that was rough. I’m sorry you lost your father,” Razor said softly.
“Thanks,” T-Bone said sadly.
“I don’t understand. Why did your mother feel she had to take you away? Wouldn’t you have been safer in the paws of a trusted person near her?” Feral asked, frowning.
The tabby turned his attention to Feral. “She did it because of the prophecy,” he said flatly.
Eyes widened on the listeners.
Dr. Sinian blurted, “Prophecy?”
T-Bone grimaced unhappily. “Yeah, apparently there was a prophecy about my birth. No one had really paid much attention to it until the war started. It was foretold that a prince of the Kingdom of Light would smite the King of Darkness should he start a war. The prince shall appear through the portal when he is of age, possessing the magical abilities of his home and the unknown skills of the adopted world he was hidden on. During a battle most mighty, he will bring low the King of Darkness. That prince is apparently me.”
Everyone stared at him in shock.
“Kat’s Alive! You’re a prince?” Feral said, shaking his head in disbelief.
“Yeah, hard for me to believe too. My real name is Prince Lorcan, my mother is Queen Sorcha and my father was Alister Breegan from Megakat City,” T-Bone said.
“Your father was from here?” Razor said in amazement.
“That’s why she left me here. She knew my father’s people would take care of me and I would fit in. My true appearance was locked into my body by a spell of my mother’s. The medallion is a learning tool, and, when the Hoblin attacked, it took over and released my true appearance.”
“Uh, wait, that figure knew how to use a sword very well and fly and no way did you know how to do either,” Razor objected.
“Yeah, I know. Remember I said it felt like a dream to me…….?” he asked. Razor and Feral nodded. “Well, my battle skills and knowledge of this world were used by the medallion which added an overlay of an experienced Alarian’s skills and knowledge over my mind and did what was necessary. I was sort of a spectator in my own body as it were. The Alarian warrior mind that was used, apparently is an uncle of mine,” T-Bone explained the best he could. It still sounded weird when he said it aloud.
Feral grimaced in distaste. “That smacks of mind control.”
“Well, I guess you could call it that except it wasn’t trying to control me as much as it was guiding my body to do what it would have been trained to do if I had been raised at court,” T-Bone tried to clarify.
“I still wouldn’t have liked my body to have been hijacked that way,” Feral muttered.
“Truthfully, I didn’t like it much either but there was no choice at the time. Anyway, the medallion will teach me how to use my magical abilities and how to release my real appearance so that I can fulfill the prophecy,” the tabby said glumly.
“Geez, they aren’t asking much of you, are they?” Feral grunted sarcastically. “So, how does all this affect our city’s defense?” he asked, getting back to the subject that was more important to him.
“Yeah, well until I learn my abilities, you can expect frequent invasions from my world. The Dark King wants me captured or dead,” T-Bone said grimly. “I have to learn as fast as I can. All you can do, Commander, is warn Razor and I whenever you get a call about a portal showing or odd, unexplainable things happening and I’ll deal with them. You can act with everything you have, but you will not defeat them. At best, you’ll be able to delay or prevent them from harming and damaging the city until I can take them out. That’s the best I can give you right now.”
“Oh, that’s just wonderful. What about those things that are still here that are destroying our equipment with their malicious and sneaky damaging of the innards of everything we have?” Feral asked bitterly.
“You mean the fremlins……. yeah, we’ve had our own run-ins with the little invisible beasties,” T-Bone growled. “I don’t know how to deal with them yet, but I’ll make it my first lesson requirement and get back to you immediately.”
“I’ll hold you to that. Those things have really made it impossible to do anything, and I’m concerned one of our own omegas would take advantage of our helplessness. Though, come to think of it, Hard Drive, Turmoil and Dark Kat would be hamstrung as well since these things would destroy their favorite mechanized toys. The only two that won’t be affected is Viper and the Pastmaster,” Feral said thoughtfully.
“The Pastmaster won’t appear,” T-Bone said flatly.
“Huh! How do you know?” the Commander asked in surprise.
“My race’s magic holds sway right now; his isn’t compatible. His magic is blocked. I can’t explain how I know that, I just do,” the tabby said, shrugging.
“Well, that’s a relief to know. I think you’re right about the others too, Commander. However, I don’t think Viper will be trying anything right now either. Just a feeling of mine,” Razor said.
“Alright, then we just focus on our present problem of magical invaders from your dimension, SWAT Kat. I need to go home and get some rest; there’s not much night left. Tomorrow will probably be a hectic day. Keep me informed,” Feral grunted then made his way out of the office and out of the museum.
“He’s right; we’ve got to get some rest while we can,” Razor agreed, getting up as well.
“I don’t know what I can do to help but keep me in the loop and let me know if there’s anything I can do,” Dr. Sinian said as she walked with them to the main doors and saw them out.
“We will, doc. Get some rest yourself,” T-Bone said then the two of them hurried out and down the stairs for their jet. They heard Feral’s chopper already airborne and heading back to Enforcer Headquarters. Soon, they were off and heading home themselves.
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