"SwatKats Unmasked?" Pt. V of V

From: Andy Hill <chance_at_unix.infoserve.net>
Date: Sat, 22 Apr 1995 19:38:44 -0700 (PDT)

     Yeah, its early...but I was sitting on the beach in the sun and felt
like writing.


     The dust settled, and T-Bone extricated himself from his position
both half on and half under the instrument panel. He wiped away the
blood trickling into his eyes from the sizeable gash in his forehead, and
sniffed the air for any trace of aviation fuel. He had a pounding
headache, and the matted fur beneath his ears told him he'd received a
concussion serious enough to warrant attention. After a few attempts, he
managed to stand upright and turned to glare at Razor, who sat motionless
in his seat, eyes fixed on the floor. Razor looked up to meet T-Bone's
stare, but quickly turned away to escape the judgement it represented.

     T-Bone half-fell out of the cockpit, and surveyed the damage -
realizing that the TurboKat had little chance of being moved to the
hangar without hours of work. They'd certainly be discovered long before
that, and he sat down on a pile of debris, fumbling with his helmet
strap. Razor rid himself of the harness, climbed out of the cockpit, and
sat down next to T-Bone, without even once looking up. T-Bone finally
freed the strap and pulled off his helmet, widening the cut above his eye
in the process. Razor was alarmed at the amount of blood, and reached
out toward him.

        "Hey, that looks pretty bad - better let me have a look at it.."

     Razor tried moving the fur aside to expose the cut, but T-Bone stood
up and knocked his arm away.

      ONE DAY! You should have left well-enough alone, but no, Razor has
      to screw around, nearly costing us the TurboKat, AND OUR LIVES IN
      THE PROCESS!!!"

     T-Bone threw his helmet against the steel of the garage door, and
Razor stared at the ground, shuddering at the sound of the impact.

        "I'm sorry, T-Bone..."

     But he was talking to himself, and T-Bone walked into the garage,
leaving Razor sitting there, kicking in the dust.


     Feral had enough of the dog-and-pony show that passed for the
unveiling of the latest Enforcer vehicle. He'd spent two days of the
long weekend at the Proving Ground site, and had no wish to hang around
for another one of Manx's interminable speeches. There was real Enforcer
work to be done, and the TV crew would just have to find someone else to
misquote that afternoon. He sneaked behind the caravan of Television
trucks, and made it to the parking lot unobserved, started his car, and
turned on the two-way to see if anything interesting was happening
anywhere on such a day. He was just in time to here the voice of Lt.
Steel ordering an Enforcer contingent to the MegaKat City Salvage
Yard...to arrest the SwatKats. Feral stepped on the gas and ran through
the checkpoint without stopping; Steel had overplayed his hand once too


     Side by side, without speaking a word, Razor and T-Bone cleaned
themselves up as much as possible, and changed into their coveralls -
emerging from the garage just in time to see Lt. Steel leaning
nonchalantly against his car, tracker in hand. Steel moved the device
toward the TurboKat, and the beeping changed to a steady scream.


     He nodded toward the Enforcers flanking him, who moved towards
T-Bone and Razor, handcuffs ready. T-Bone backed away from the
approching Enforcers, looking for a defensible position.

        "Hey Steel, your momma know you're out this late?"

     Two Enforcers jumped on him, driving his head into the dirt. Razor
tripped the Enforcer attempting to handcuff him, and ran towards the others.

        "Hey creep, can't you see he's got a head injury..."

     Razor tackled T-Bone's assailant, but was himself thrown face-first
into the ground, right next to T-Bone. Steel walked towards them.

        "Touching. Engaged, or just dating..."

     Razor looked up from beneath the knee of his captor.

        "Why, Steel....you jealous?"

     The remark earned Razor a knee in the shoulderblades, and an extra
notch on the handcuffs. Steel headed toward the TurboKat.

        "Tsk, Tsk...you should really work on those landings, 'SwatRats'
         - no wonder you got thrown off the force..."

     T-Bone growled, his vision blurring with the blood streaming into
his eyes. The Enforcers dragged them to their feet, and cuffed them to
each other across the telephone pole in the yard. Steel walked back to
his car, and leaned up against the fender.

        "You know, they're going to pin a medal on me for capturing you two,
         I might even get a parade in my honour..."

     T-Bone and Razor looked at each other, then despondently at the ground.

        "...I can see the headline now...'Steel Captures Vigilante Pilots',
         ...has a nice ring to it, don't you think? Search this dump..."

     He motioned to the nearest Enforcers, who started toward the garage.

        "...and after that, a promotion will be in order..." Steel gestured to
         an imaginary billboard in the sky, "...how does 'Commander' Steel


     No one had noticed Feral's arrival, and he now stood behind Steel,
arms folded.

        "Mister...you've got a lot of explaining to do..."

     Steel was surprised at Feral's unscheduled appearance, but he held
all the cards, and wasn't the least bit intimidated.

        "Explaining? To who...you? I've done in two days what you couldn't
         in two years..." he said, gesturing toward his prisoners, "..I've
         captured the famous 'SwatKats' !"

     Feral looked at Steel, then at the SwatKats - meeting T-Bone's gaze
in a mutual display of unbridled hatred. Feral had a decision to make,
and could feel that the eyes of every Enforcer were on him. There was
much to consider, but certain rules couldn't be broken by anybody - even
himself - and Steel had broken them all.

        "These..." Feral said, indicating T-Bone and Razor,"...are the
         SwatKats? Don't make me laugh. These two are nothing more
         than a pair of washed-up cowards; they didn't have what it
         takes to be Enforcers, and they certainly don't have what it
         takes to be anything more than they are - a couple of pathetic

     T-Bone was shaking with rage, but was kicked by Razor before he
could utter a single syllable.

        "But...what about all the evidence...?"

     Steel spread his arms in exasperation, indicating the TurboKat and
its surroundings.

        "..what evidence? Look around you Steel...where's the runway,
         where's the hangar, where's any shred of evidence to link these
         two with the SwatKats?"

     Feral's speech had the desired effect, and the Enforcers around
Steel looked around the yard, and began to wonder if they hadn't been a
bit hasty to follow Steel this far. T-Bone and Razor stared at each
other in complete bewilderment, Feral's behaviour was inexplicable.

     Steel picked up the tracker, and walked over to the TurboKat, the
beep becoming a continuous screech.

        "We..we have the plane, sir...I tracked it all the way from the
         Canyon to..."

     Feral yanked the tracker from Steel's hand, and tossed it to the
ground beside the TurboKat.

        "Mister...all you have is an overactive imagination, too much
         ambition, and a couple of third-rate mechanics caught red-handed
         stripping a junked jet in their own salvage yard...."

     Feral drew a circle in the air with his hand, and the Enforcers
returned to their cars. Steel backed away until he bumped into his own
car door.

        "..y..you're letting them go...you can't do that!"

     Feral reached past Steel through the open window of the Enforcer
cruiser and pulled a metal booklet off the dashboard, slamming it against
Steel's chest, and walking towards the shackled prisoners.

        "I..I don't understand sir," said Steel, looking at the metal booklet
         labelled 'Parking Tickets', "..what does this mean?"

             "You're a smart guy Steel, work it out."

     Feral threw the handcuff keys at the feet of Razor and T-Bone, then
went back towards Steel, opening the car door for him. Steel threw the
ticket book inside, slammed the door, and sped off in a cloud of dust.
Feral and the SwatKats stared at each other through the dust cloud for
what seemed minutes, then he returned to his car and drove off.

     Freed from the cuffs, T-Bone picked up a length of pipe and walked
over to the tracking device, still screaming in the dirt where Feral had
thrown it. He saw the transmitter under the wing almost immediately, and
covered his eyes as he smashed the device out of existence, silencing the
tracker. The effects of the concussion were beginning to take their
toll, and T-Bone collapsed on the ground next to the plane, just managing
to sit up. Razor threw the cuffs into the dumpster, dusted himself off,
and sat down beside T-Bone.

        "Razor..I'm sorry for what I said, none of this had anything to
         do with you...what can I say?"

     Razor looked over the yard, then up at T-Bone who was too ashamed at
his behaviour to take his eyes off the ground.

              "Well..." Razor paused, lifting up T-Bone's chin, "...you can say
         you'll let me have a look at that cut..."


     Steel signed his mane, as he did almost a hundred times a day, and
placed the ticket under the windshield wiper of MegaKat City's worst
parking violator. He caught the reflection of the TurboKat in the
windshield passing above him, as it did often during the course of his
new job. He'd have another opportunity some day, even if he had to make it.


     "His biography said he bumped his butt 'cuz he ate too much sugar...
        ....it's SAD (really)..." - Slappy Squirrel, "Bumbie's Mom" ANIMX
     "We have a mission Ann, down these mean skies, a 'KAT must fly...
                 ...we wanna be the good guys..."

      (Thanks Lance. Some of us got the reference - eventually!)

Received on Sat Apr 22 1995 - 22:33:30 PDT

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