|Kindred Cries: A Fur Fighter II Story
Author: Black Rosettes PM
The roles of the Fur Fighters and their formerly abducted children are reversed when a new villain rises to power, forcing the adolescent group to fulfill their destiny as the next generation of elite warriors.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Drama - Chapters: 2 - Words: 31,256 - Reviews: 14 - Favs: 7 - Follows: 3 - Published: 02-06-05 - id: 2253048
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Notes: Here is the farthest I'd gotten in this tale before
being sidetracked. I hope you enjoy what little action and suspense
there is. This first chapter is exemplary for its organization,
which when pieced together will unfold how subsequent chapters would
have flowed, giving hints about the past and what you could expect in
the next chapter. This only chapter also presents some intriguing
ideas of what Bizarre Creations could have incorporated into their
next Fur Fighter game, too. Again, check my profile for more
information to read a little bit more about some of the other
characters and enemies that were to be written about, including
potential bosses and plot twists.
Fur Fighters II
"Remnants of the Past"
"Viggo A-Go-Go" – Secret Island – 1834 hrs
"I see it up ahead," said Jean-Claude, just as he drew out his pistol from its holster. "It seems there had been an explosion here many years ago. You can literally see the infrastructure."
Tweek gradually reduced his wings span and began to descend with Jean-Claude in his grasp. Once the two came up to the beach of what was known to be Viggo's Secret Island, the red dragon released his leader and began to drop to the sandy surface.
Jean-Claude landed gracefully as he had always done in the past. He slowly rose from kneeling, readjusting the black strap which held his assault rifle on his back. The black rifle glistened under the last remnants of the sun, for night was steadily coming. It was late in the afternoon, and there was no telling who or what crept inside the thick jungle area at night, especially on a supposedly desolate island.
The two Fur Fighters quickly stormed the beach, heading for the entrance of the jungle where a narrow passageway, covered in green all around, could be seen. The sand almost immediately turned into a rough dirt path toward the complex hidden within the jungle's depths.
The complex – shaped much like a dome – has definitely shown its wear over the years. And since the last explosion that rocked the little island, holes in the foundation of the godly structure were numerous on its sun roof, exhibiting orifices as if the place actually had a face. Peak towers on both sides used to be the radio broadcast systems for the H.M.S. Viggolina and the V-100 submarine, but now a mangled mass of metal. However, the only mega versatile structures around the base were that of its warning lights – tall spires with circular light posts that reached eighty feet in to the air and spaced twenty feet apart from each other.
Passing through the jungle was much like an outdoor safari. Creepy crawlers and buzzers made an orgy of strange noises as the two Fur Fighters approached. Crickets and the like exchanged their nightly sounds while the sun was lowering beyond the horizon. A thick, moist and slightly smoggy air filled the two Fur Fighters' eyes. It was humid. This became evident from the beads of sweat forming across their foreheads.
"It is so hot out here," Jean-Claude complained. The pussycat continued to push aside tall foliage with his pistol, slowly coming up to the west entrance of Viggo's base. In front of him lied a monstrous double door made of several plates of steel reinforced many times over. By the looks of the doorway, Jean-Claude knew they were not to advance any further unless they solved the enigma of how to open it.
Tweek softly ran past the feline, making a barely noticeable trail of his footprints behind him. There was a console to the right side of the doorway, marring from the rest of the cold steel in front of them. Running his claws over the console, he typed in anything just to see if it would activate itself. Unfortunately, no lights, sounds or words came on the small screen. With a desperate sigh, he slammed his fist down on it.
"There is nothing I can do here, Jean-Claude. The power is out."
"Very well, we shall find another way around," Jean-Claude said, stepping back from where he stood at the center of the door, looking up and around.
"Eureka! I found a way to get inside. Wait here for me, Tweek. I will find a way to restore power so that you can get in from here. This shouldn't take too long, I hope."
Tweek gave a nod as Jean-Claude disappeared among some brush. The small red dragon could hear plants being trampled over by the feline … until his footholds grew quieter. There he waited, folding his arms and tapping his firearm against his left shoulder.
Jean-Claude sheathed his pistol before putting his claws to work. One paw after the next, he dug his claws into the side wall of the base, noticing that he could scale the wall if he needed to. Above him some fifteen feet, a ventilation shaft could be seen. For several minutes, the feline climbed higher and higher until he paws were beginning to ache.
"This is most tiring. How does mother do it for so long?" he whispered, looking down and gazing over the jungle area.
Tall exotic trees seemed to be right behind him, and all the rest became a "jungle" floor of mixed plants and dark patches where the sun could not see. This made the feline even more nervous should he accidentally slip and fall and plummet to his doom. Even if he did land on his feet, he would still take a considerable amount of damage – and that was the last thing he wanted to do.
He finally reached the bottom of the vent and, with one claw deep into the wall, used the other to open the shaft. After a few attempts, the screws that held the square vent covering in place came loose as it was yanked, and found their way to the bottom of jungle's floor. Jean-Claude smiled happily, releasing the vent covering for it to join its friends below. He climbed inside, welcomed by darkness and dust.
The feline forced his way through cobwebs, tight corners, past sudden drops, and other hazards until he found the end of his trail. He reached out to draw a picture of the vent in front of him with his paw. He came closer to it, pressing his right ear against it just to be on the safe side. He heard nothing. Satisfied that the darkness hid nothing hideous from him, he positioned his body around and placed his feet against the vent.
With one powerful thrust, he kicked the vent of its hinges, listening as it told him how far the drop was into the pit of darkness. A few clangs resonated in the room, which he presumed he had crept into a large room. He turned around and lowered himself down.
His feet touched against a pane of coldness and grime. And again, he slowly climbed down and felt a new surface that seemed to be expansive. Obviously, it was a tile floor of some sort. He scanned around the dark area with his cat eyes, trying to make out the dark silhouettes that made up the room's contents. When he walked over the floor, a soft pat greeted him. The more he moved, the more he heard of himself: his padded feet, clothing, and soft breaths.
He walked with conviction at last - approaching what he thought was a threshold that led into another adjoining room. Just as predicted, he stepped into another room, and this time one with an exit. When he came up to it, his ears perked up as if he had heard a faint sand of rapid footsteps just beyond the door. He narrowed his eyes – his pupils becoming thin radiant slits – when stealthily pushing the door open a bit.
In the corridor was a stairwell going down in a spiral. There did not seem to be any other doors present on this floor. Again, the same noise as before entered his ears. He turned his head in confusion, slowly creeping out into the hall.
What is that noise? Where is it coming from? He inquired silently. He came against a wall with his back, and gently descended around the stairwell in attempt not to give away his presence to whatever slinked in the darkness.
He drew out his pistol as before, swaying it in a reckless manner. He was a bit intimidated of what he could not see but only hear. Whatever it was, it could leap out at him and surprise him with a nasty attack. The noise anew filled the hall. This time, however, it only got louder as time passed in the direction he moved. He was going down to the next level, and then the next. The basement was his first priority to restore power. And to do that, he would need to locate the generator room. After that, he vowed to blow the fluffing out of whatever creature dared to toy with his senses.
On the basement level, another outline of the door could be seen in the darkness. He reached out for the doorknob, turning and slowly pulling it open. Just as he got half of his body through the door, something swept past him from behind. He quickly motioned his head and gun in the direction of the sound. He refrained from firing. He did not want the beast to know of his presence just yet. Perhaps that was the whole purpose of the thing toying with him?
Jean-Claude held his breath when he entered the next room backwards. He kept his gun drawn at the door from whence he came should his assailant decide to enter the same room. When he finally decided to turn his head to look around while keeping his pistol pointed at the door, he embarked toward a little station with a fuse-like contraption beside it.
He curled his tail behind him, "There you are, mon ami! Come to Jean-Claude."
In front of the consoles, he ran his claw over any of them to get anything reaction out of systems. When that failed, he moved over to the small box next to them on a wall. He lowered his pistol at last, holstering his firearm once more, and then placing both paws on the lever. For a moment, he pushed the switch in the wrong direction but corrected and with a click, he heard the sounds of electricity flooding the room, followed by faint flickers of light from above. And soon following, the mechanic churns of machines being resurrected filled the room.
"Now where are the lights?"
Unexpectedly, a row of fluorescent lights completely lit the room above him, each coming on with its differential flicker. The room was raw with light, and they all revealed other machines that would restore power to blackout areas throughout the facility.
"Now to check on the other systems…"
He walked over to the other consoles stationed at another wall of the room. There he read the hubs of each laboratory. Thanks to the restoration of the main power supply, all but one laboratory system was active. He took this into consideration, rubbing his chin in thought.
"Would there be anything important in Lab 003? Maybe not and…" he said, flicking a switch cap up and pressing down a black button, "maybe. Just in case, I suppose."
Lab 003 power was restored, reported the closest terminal in green text. The text flushed across the screen slowly, catching Jean-Claude's attention. Meanwhile, as he stared into the screen, a strange figure slinked behind him; its ghostly silhouette materialized on the screen and, when it did, Jean-Claude turned around in fright, automatically having his weapon drawn at the person's head.
In front of him, a large, green scaly beast garbed only in a ragged shirt slowly advanced with its long, narrow snout protruding from its obtuse head. A row of large teeth lined both sides of its gigantic maw on each side. Its tail was long and pointy, and dragged along the floor as it approached; it produced a grisly noise between a scratch and snag. The beast's eyes were positioned on the sides of its head, though never close to each other – the glowing pupils seemed to magnify when they lay upon its prey, Jean-Claude.
The creature lurched forward, stopping short when the feline pulled his gun barrel to a click.
"Stay back! I'm warning you," threatened Jean-Claude.
The beast dared another step. With a sudden flash, its head pealed back from capturing the bullet. The creature did not fall back but staggered, as it slowly positioned its head forward again, having taken the bullet like it was a pinch. From its forehead, a gaping hole leaked fluff. Still, it continued toward the feline without a hint of emotion. On its face, it bore a deadpan countenance. The only sign of necessity was that of hunger when its red tongue swept from side to side as it gained more feet between it and the feline.
Jean-Claude narrowed his eyes and continued to fire. Several bullets met the creature, but it did not go down. The bullets only slowed it, delayed it. The sooner Juliette's son came to the realization of this he began to step away from it, preparing to leap atop a large computer terminal or machinery.
"Graw!" came from the creature as another bullet pierced it. It was beginning to corner its meal.
Jean-Claude's eyes bulged in fright. Without looking where he was backing into, he tripped over himself, and landed on his back. He began pushing himself backward along the floor toward the only entrance and exit.
"You accursed beast! Stay back!" he cried, firing several more bullets until his pistol consumed its last bullet. "Damn you…"
Jean-Claude quickly reloaded his revolver.
"You will not … fluff me!"
He continued firing at the creature whose stuffing poured copiously out of him. This was most horrifying to him.
The two continued this endless fray. Their shadows danced on the wall of one firing and the other approaching restlessly. Soon the one staggering pounced forth, landing on top of the other.
Outside, Tweek came to his senses when the small computer terminal came alive and beeped at him. He turned around, walked up to it, and began typing in commands. The computer refused to let the dragon gain access to the entrance, and thus incensed him. In blind fury, Tweek blew a hot breath of fire over the screen until it turned blacker than anything he had ever seen.
"Grr! I must find a way in!" Tweek growled. "I know!"
Tweek gave some space between him and the double door. He knew what he was going to do, and with that he ran up to the door and rammed it with his shoulder. Pain shot up the dragon's spine. His little rush only formed a small dent in the first few steel plates.
He then began clawing viciously at the door, grating and tearing small tendrils of steel. It was futile to go through the door. With a heavy sigh, the dragon went back over to the console and leaned against it with his elbow. The pressure on the keys made numerous beeps as if to insult the dragon, and then something amazing happened. A deep beep chimed amid the others, and then the ground beneath the dragon began to rattle a little.
Tweek backed from the door as it opened just enough for his body to squeeze through. A shortage took place, shooting sparks from the corners of the door assembly. He wasted no time to get through, and with one great leap, the red dragon found his way inside.
He got up and began dusting himself off. He glanced around in his new surroundings, and suddenly the familiar scene brought back an old memory. Where rubble, torn sculptures, and other things charred, the figments of the dome room came alive again in his mind.
In the room was a huge arena with steel plates that circulated around the room to create a floor. At their center was a stadium, with every relevant abstract of the hubs the Fur Fighters had traveled to and from: Viggo A-Go-Go, Dinotopolis, Cape Canardo, Beaver Power, City of Fear, and New Quack City. These monuments were Viggo's mementoes that represented all the places his powerful industry had emerged.
A brief battle took place among the monuments. Back then, Telipoints (Teleporters) were readily available around the arena. Now all there were was the aftermath of that war long ago. However, little things remained intact in the arena when Tweek got closer.
The twin towers of New Quack City had been reduced in size, but he could still tell what they were. The dinosaur child reading his comic book had been destroyed mostly with the exception of his clawed feet. Viggo's miniature air carrier was still there, the H.M.S. Viggolina, though badly damaged from the rubble that had fallen from the ceiling. Everything else – terminated.
Tweek almost fell off the edge when he took another step forward. There was no floor like before. The plates that made up the floor automatically could barely be seen way down in the bottomless room. Putting his wings together, he leapt off the platform and glided across to the arena where the old relics remained.
He landed on top of what used to be the World Quack Center. He looked around and noticed some left over golden tokens.
"Hm. Those are still here?"
Tweek descended from the miniature monument, landing and collecting five of the tokens. He quickly ran over them, gathering more than twenty-five of them. At least, from now on he could activate and use the Teleporter device. Of course, that was after he found one somewhere around the base.
The red dragon gave the arena one last look until he was satisfied with his little collection of tokens. Afterward, he ran to the edge of the stadium and leapt off, gliding to another region of the room where a long hallway led to an older location.
Tweek quickly landed and immediately ran into the next room, reading the sign on the wall as Lab 003. Inside he found that Jean-Claude has successfully restored the power, because all of the mechanical components were on and active. However, some of them were broken from a previous blast. Nevertheless, this did not stop the investigation.
The third laboratory was massive. Everything in it was many times bigger than Tweek himself. He remembered as a baby dragon climbing things, gliding across ledges, and using the Teleporters to bring in his comrades. Most of all, he remembered what insidious fiend ran this entire operation – General Viggo.
Tubular chambers from before were now completely broken. Nothing else would be reanimating that villainous cat ever again. Water from the tube ducts (water works) had long ceased and now left the tanks utterly dry, and decorated with spider webs and rust. This was where Tweek reminded himself where Rico had swam through it. On the far side walls where small vents remained, Tweek noticed they were still broken long since Chang ever set foot in the laboratory to enter the computer system.
Looking upward, claw marks could be seen on a large wall hanging from the ceiling leading toward a hidden area into the network system. Juliette once climbed from way up there. Meanwhile, at the center wall of the room, a pane of glass once existed exhibiting a waterfall draining from some unknown location. There left behind were the soft mounds for burrowing, and this signified Roofus in every respect. From that glass window, just to the left of it, where oversized computer chips (platforms) rose at different heights Bungalow had jumped from one to another to reach his objective.
When Tweek motioned his head rightward, he noticed a rectangular lift. Just below it, that was where he had to glide down to reach his goal. Back then, everyone had a goal – to destroy the mod chips; these chips were used for animal cloning.
That indeed was the magnitude of Viggo's technology, an inclination of just how far his wicked paws had grasped. He had the money, prestige and power to fund advanced systems that could clone living creatures. However, he did not use the cloning system for reasonable needs. No, he used it to clone himself to battle the six unconquerable Fur Fighters. But once his six mod chips had been destroyed, it was time for the finale.
Tweek ran across the room, to where the shatterproof glass window had existed, and where Roofus and Viggo fought the last battle. Outside of the laboratory, Tweek searched around as if he had lost something. His eyes fell upon the platform where Viggo once stood with pride. He came closer to it, noticing a shard reflecting the last few rays of the sun just before darkness.
He reached down and picked it up. Suddenly, the object was not a shard but a coarse strand of fur, white fur. Could it be … Viggo's? He pinched the strand between his claws, and then made his way back into the laboratory.
Tweek approached a terminal, becoming worried about Jean-Claude, who was already taking too much time getting to the rendezvous point. Laying aside the strand of fur, the dragon began tapping a button on a keyboard, noticing how the heads-up display changed from one camera to another. Upon switching past a screen too fast, he returned to one screen and found something of immediate interest. Golden tokens. And a trove of them.
"Whoa! So many! But where?" he said, trying to figure out a way of bringing up schematics. Behind him, the sounds of tapping footsteps gathered by the many.
Tweek flapped his wings hard in fright, and then turned around ready with his pistol. In five different locations in the room, strange creatures surrounded him, cutting off all entrances and exits. One of them, strangely, donned a propulsion unit for instant flight; and not only that, he was gowned in an armored suit. All of them had red scales and golden irises that would make one believe they were incandescent for their intensity. Their tails were short and scaly, swaying softly. Each of them, except for the inconspicuous flyer, was armed with flamethrowers.
Tweek gave a nervous laugh. "Hi, guys. Are you all on a scavenger hunt, too?"
"Prepared to be terminated, Fur Fighter, by order of Shina," the flyer said, activating his jet pack and hovering in the air. All the others took aim at Tweek.
"Shina? Who is that?" asked Tweek.
His answer rained down at him like fire. Almost like a domino effect, one began a stream of flame and the others followed consecutively. Immediately, Tweek leapt atop a terminal and took to the air, flying around the infantry and firing his pistol rapidly.
"Ballistic Flyers, take out the Fur Fighter!" ordered the jet pack lizard.
The red lizards aimed high and shot flame after flame at Tweek in attempt to force him to land. Meanwhile, the leader of the group blasted forward, aiming his arm that had a small torch on his forearm and releasing any even greater flame than the others. The new flame overwhelmed Tweek as he immediately fell from the air and hit the floor. He had definitely taken twice the damage – one from the attack and the other from hitting the surface. He would need some kind of health recovery soon.
Suddenly four of the lizards ran his way and tried to set him ablaze. In an instant, Tweek flapped his wings and rolled himself out of harm's way. When he had done so, the ballistic flyer came again, and this time used another type of weapon, a rocket launcher. From his other forearm, a small compartment revealed itself, and then came a rocket from its opening.
The rocket was not nearly as fast as Tweek had expected. With a simple strafe in midair, Tweek easily eluded the rocket. Behind him, the rocket impacted against a computer mainframe, making it topple and show a large hole in its design.
"You think you're good, eh? Try this on for size!" said the flyer, pressing his arms together and releasing a deadly concoction of both rocket and flame at the dragon.
Tweek groaned, having to force himself into flight again when the others tried to burn him. When the rocket came forth, he flipped backwards, and allowed it to go past him. The rocket destroyed a wall this time, and unveiled something Tweek had never seen before. The dragon quickly dodged the flame attack from the flyer, and then jettisoned toward the secret area in the wall.
Inside, he found some kind of new weapon. The weapon was very small in his hand, but its long barrel and tubular chamber with an unknown liquid inside reassured him that it was enough for his enemies. Taking it into his possession abruptly, he came out of the wall and pulled the trigger. In an instant, what appeared to be an invisible wall of coercion behind it swept over the infantry like a wave. The few seconds that passed left the lizards in suspended animation.
Their mouths agape and flames having been ceased completely, they began to move at the speed of a crawl … until they could no longer function. Tweek was no longer worried about them, and he then turned the new weapon on the last flyer.
"Say bye-bye," Tweek grinned.
He pulled the trigger, but nothing else came out. When he checked the little tubular container, there was no more juice left. At this, the lizard smirked and aimed once anew at the dragon's head, preparing to fire a rocket.
"Good-bye, Fur Fighter," said the flyer.
And at that moment of pause, just before firing the rocket, a red reticle appeared on the lizard's forearm. When the rocket released, it almost immediately exploded in the lizard's face, sending him sprawling in midair, only to crash into a far wall. The beam that rested on his forearm was now found on the wall where he once hovered. Tweek traced the beam back to its owner, and looking through a crosshair was Jean-Claude.
"Jean! You're all right," said Tweek, enthused.
Jean-Claude looked away from his crosshair on his mother's rifle, "Yeah, yeah. I ran into a bit of trouble downstairs in the generator room. You won't believe all the crazy buzzers we have creeping around this place. No wonder Viggo left."
"Hahaha! Oh, watch out!"
The flyer recovered from the blast. He pushed himself out of a wall, slowly descending to land on his feet. His jet pack has been damaged from the collision. The red lizard growled as he removed the jet from his body, throwing it behind him several feet.
The pack simply erupted in an uproar of fire and debris behind him. The lizard kept an enraged expression as he walked toward the two friends.
"You may have destroyed my jets, but I am still here," he said, putting up his arms and taking aim again but in two different targets. "Just die already, you Fur Fighters!"
Tweek quickly turned to Jean-Claude.
"Watch out, he's got a flamethrower!"
A stream of flame rushed over to Jean-Claude's area while two rockets went in Tweek's. Together, the two rolled away toward one another to avoid the hazards. More of the items in the room were destroyed carelessly. Seeing this, Jean-Claude gnawed on his bottom lip in thought.
"Tweek? He's not purposely trying to harm us. He's here for the computers. Do not let him take any more systems out, or our investigation will come to an abrupt end."
Tweek nodded. "On a monitor, I saw a room full of golden tokens. If you can take care of this guy, I can escape and get our ticket home. Just keep him busy long enough for me to make my move."
Jean-Claude pulled Tweek back before he could run off.
"Wait, mon ami. There are alligators everywhere else. I wasted nearly all of my ammunition taking one out. I will give you my remaining clips, but you will have to manage once you're on your own. Good luck!"
The feline quickly pulled out the last of his clips tucked between his belt and body and handed them to Tweek. Tweek nodded, taking refuge at another side of the room.
Jean-Claude took aim at the lizard's head with his assault rifle, firing a round off. The round made the lizard stumble backward a few steps, but then he recovered. There was no way of causing damage as long as he had that armor on.
"You can't defeat me!" the flyer boasted.
Tweek saw this as his chance to escape, and with it he ran quickly past the lizard. When the lizard saw what was taking place, he turned and tried to torch the dragon – but his attempt was seconds too late. Jean-Claude took this moment to discover a weakness in the lizard's armor.
"Salut? Idiot. You say I can't defeat you, then watch this…"
Just as the lizard motioned around to face the pussycat, a round struck him and he began to kneel in pain.
Jean-Claude grinned most wickedly.
"You may have protected your chest, but with a good shot like me, you left everything else open."
The feline shot another round off from the rifle; the last blast reverberated in the room. The lizard fell limp, holding himself up with an arm. He looked up, thinking he had seen a bullet come his way. Another sharp pain found its place on his forearms, legs, and finally ….
"That takes care of you, monsieur. "—Jean-Claude turned away and took aim at the frozen lizards—"Oh? Your friends? They won't need their weapons anymore."
With a simple tap of his claws, the first frozen lizard shattered to pieces. He repeated this thrice before collecting their weapons and ammunition. Once he was geared up, he approached the dying leader of the pack, whose head oozed with fluff. The lizard continued to blink slowly each time he breathed the last of his breaths.
The flyer looked up to the end of a flamethrower.
"Au revoir," Jean-Claude said, pulling the trigger and burning the lizard to a crisp.
Tweek rammed a door down with his shoulder while in flight. He rolled into a stance after touching the floor, and soon found himself among the many golden tokens he had seen on the monitor before. His eyes glowed … the same color as the tokens while marveling over them. He immediately began collecting them by the handful, bringing his collection up to one hundred and eighty-seven tokens.
He frowned when he could not find the last thirteen in the room. Perhaps they were in another place he had initially overlooked?
Tweek left the room, turning down a hall and heading back to the laboratory. On his way back, he noticed a door left ajar.
"Where does that lead to?" he blinked.
Heading over, he opened the door and aimed ahead of him. He found a ladder going straight up. He wondered where it would lead him, and thus he began climbing. He noticed that the more he climbed up, the darker it got. Eventually, his head nudged against something – a panel.
He felt for a handle. He braced and turned it, pushing the panel outward. When it was completely open, a dark sky littered with stars welcomed him. A cool wonderful breeze bathed his scaly body as he looked around. He had gained access to the rooftop of the base.
The roof was round as the structure suggested superficially. The roof itself had small pebbles strewn about, giving it an attractively dark look. And all the while, the tall light spires Tweek had seen along with Jean-Claude, were now active – twirling a large lamp in all directions, lighting the roof nicely. More noteworthy of all the movement on the roof was that of a green globe, a teleporter, which caught Tweek's eyes.
Inside the teleporter was no other. Perhaps it was his teleporter? Regardless of whose it was, it definitely provided an escape instead of flying all the way home. Tweek made note of this just before closing the panel behind him.
Tweek found the third laboratory again, seeing that Jean-Claude was busily working on a computer terminal. At the feline's feet were little broken pieces of what used to be the lizards. Their weapons lain on a counter, waiting for their next owner's hands.
"So you took care of the lizards for me?"
Jean-Claude beckoned with a paw. "Oui, we needed their weapons. Moreover, the threat is over. So did you find our 'ticket' home?"
"Well, sort of. You see, we are still missing thirteen tokens. For all we know, these thirteen could be anywhere. I was lucky enough to find most of them in the first place."
"So that's the good news, eh? And the bad news?"
"Without them, we may not get back to The Village anytime soon. Then again, I did find a teleporter on the roof."
"Really? Was anyone in it?" Jean-Claude turned away from the monitor.
"No, no one. It is my teleporter, obviously. No one can go in or out of it but me. So we'll have to figure out a way to get those last thirteen tokens to get you to go with me. Oh! Before I forget…" Tweek said, pointing to the item of interest beside the feline. "Look beside you, there I found someone's fur. Perhaps it is Viggo's?"
Jean-Claude slowly motioned his head around the keyboards, finally noticing the little strand by the edge of the desk. He pinched it, holding it to his face and examining it further. With a slight sigh, he shook his head and turned to face the red dragon in disagreement.
"What good is it? It may not even be important as the files I'm trying to gain access here."
"In a way, that is true. But what if it isn't Viggo's? Do you really want to take that risk?"
The feline then blew the fur away.
"Yes. Where did you find it, anyway?"
Tweek walked over to the feline, stowing the strand of fur secretly in his friend's back pants pocket, and then resting a claw on the back of the chair; and, with the other claw, pointed outside beyond the broken window. Jean-Claude scratched the back of his head, shrugging his shoulders to show his indifference.
"Outside, over there. That is where Viggo was last seen after the last battle. Roofus fought him to the end … until the cat jumped off the edge and escaped."
"Hm. That was a battle I could not attest to. But that is why you are here – to vouch for me. Besides, if Viggo is still around, I'm sure he will show his ugly mug one of these days. Until then, let's see what he was up to. I'm going to access his secret archives now. Thanks to Chung's father having a computer at home, hacking comes natural when your best friend's dad is into technology."
Tweek smiled, turning his gaze to look around the laboratory. He walked idly around the room, listening to the taps of the keyboard from where Jean-Claude worked. The room was cold and dismal; and with the new "additions" added, the laboratory was barely holding apart. The wall's plaster had long pealed off while small to large cracks told their anecdotes of what happened. The floor even was ripped from structures below that had been blown from a floor down, with pipes and part of the infrastructure protruding messily. By the overall appearance of the laboratory, it must have been built to withstand a few explosions, because for the mainframes and subsystems to remain active, at this point, proved it. But why would someone want this salvage this place?
"Bon!" said Jean-Claude, typing in the last few commands before rising from his makeshift chair (bent steel rod). He folded his arms, turned to the dragon, and smiled in content at his findings.
"It seems Viggo found a way to mutate himself with the Ani-Gene, a catalyst of sorts that, when extracted and injected into a specimen, it will alter all vital statistics, and enhance them several times over. This, I suppose, was his idea to create a grand army. But because our parents got in the way, this served as a deferment. But…"—placing his paw against his cheek—"can you imagine what Viggo must be able to do now with this gene now? Give or take twelve years, and…"
Tweek nodded ruefully. "Yeah, I know what you mean. Should he rise to power again, he will have an army so powerful that will probably take five generations of Fur Fighters to stop him. But with his silence, I do not believe he would launch an assault just yet. Why not five years ago? Why not after seven? But twelve?"
"I see your point, but it still doesn't explain—" the computer beeped.
"What is going on over there?"
"I don't know, Tweek. The console is having an overload or something. Damn machine," Jean-Claude cursed, typing and trying to figure out what was going on.
"Whoa!" Tweek said, as the room's lights dimmed to the point of darkness and security lights accompanied with sirens came on.
Visibility was only permitted by whatever the red lights shown in the darkness. The siren rang so loudly that the two could barely communicate under normal circumstances. Tweek came up beside Jean-Claude, noticing how the monitor screen melted away with letters and numbers, and then a new image came on screen. It depicted a silhouette slowly transforming and becoming a person. And when the image cleared from its blurry state, familiar pointy ears and broad shoulders came into view, showing the one and only General Viggo. It was a prerecorded message left years ago.
"Ah, I see that you Fur Fighters have interloped once again, and this time tampered with my personal data records. No matter, you may have found old news by now, but as a just reward, I leave you with special gifts. In this room, though probably damaged extensively by now because of soon-to-be chain of events, is rigged with enough deadly things to make sure that you see to your inevitable demise. First, you will be sealed in by an indestructible door."
Just as Viggo mentioned the trap, the only door that led into the laboratory immediately revealed a second door made of steel. From the looks of it, it seemed completely brand new, unscathed by the events before. Followed by the door being sealed, metallic shutters quickly closed off all of the broken windows in the lab. Because there were no real ventilation systems going in or out of the laboratory, this made the entire room one big death trap just as before.
"Oh yes, did I forget to mention the windows being sealed too? Haha! Good luck on trying to find a way out, because you won't. Second, the floor (which too damaged) is heat and motion sensitive. If stepped on, your heat signature will be registered and transferred over to the automated systems of the .30 caliber machine guns installed in the ceiling. From your movements alone, the guns will align with your body and send your entrails to the nearest wall. And if that is not enough for you, there is something else. Third, to make the last minutes of your life miserable, the last defense system is the formidable laser grid, which should come on any second now."
Amid the red lights and sirens, Jean-Claude and Tweek heard an electric device click on, and then a low hum could be heard all around them. Unexpected, red dots materialized all over the room from wall to wall, and at a moment's notice thick beams stretched across the room, singing everything it touched until it reached the other end of the room to their reflectors. One of the beams closest to Tweek went past his head, only inches from it. Meanwhile, Jean-Claude had three beams passing between his legs, the side of his neck, and between his left arm and side.
"Ah, good. It's online. Now where was I? Oh yes, by now, I know I have lost the battle, but not the war. No matter, at least you Fur Fighters will always be gullible enough to trigger off my traps. Nevertheless, I would just like to say that you all have been good entertainment, and hopefully in the future you will learn not to bother me ever again, should you manage to survive. This may come to you as a surprise, but global domination is no longer my thing. At least, this way I know I won't have to deal with the likes of you anymore. I have much bigger and better things to attend to. Well better luck next time, Fur Fighters. And, oh!—there are small hydrogen bombs planted all around the base, in key locations, that are set to go in t-minus fifteen minutes, consecutively. Once each vital structure is destroyed, not only will there be fireworks but also the whole damn thing collapsing on top of your heads! Tah tah friends."
Viggo's face disappeared off the screen when the monitor went black, supposedly going out. Meanwhile, Jean-Claude slowly turned his head to Tweek, as if to beckon the dragon to move.
"Tweek, we must get on top of something. The longer we stay on this floor, the faster—"—sounds of small compartments opening from above came to their ears—"Hurry, climb atop something – anything!"
With that said, Jean-Claude quickly maneuvered safely out of the beams that surrounded him. He curled his tail around his waist, held his rifle vertically down his chest, and bent his hind legs as if to jump. He leapt hard as he could to reach something he imagined that would be there in the dark before the lights had gone out. With success, he managed to get atop a mainframe by hooking his claws into it while his body dangled between two columns of beams. He pulled himself up on top of it and positioned his back against it, staring out into the darkness to see if Tweek fared any better than him. A streak of red light gave away the dragon's movements from afar.
"Tweek? Tweek? Where are you exactly, mon ami? Time is running out for us," he asked, narrowing his eyes to see in the darkness. The red lights lost sight of the dragon.
Among the darkness, the feline heard the sound of rapid footsteps, followed closely behind the sound of the machine guns ahead twirling their barrels; the sounds they produced alone were menacing and equally daunting. For a few seconds, nothing happened and then vivid flashes from machine gun fire, some sporadic at first, flooded the laboratory with light. Amid the display of flashing lights, Jean-Claude thought he saw the form of Tweek cleverly prancing from one spot to the next, eluding the laser beams and the machine gun fire in unison. The loudness of the machine guns were constant, until finally, one of them died, and then the other followed a similar suit … only firing a single burst at a time before going on standby again. This told Jean-Claude that Tweek had either been hit and was down, or he had managed to get on top of a structure. However, the silence that ensued after worried the feline.
"Tweek? Did you make it on top of something? Tweeek?"
For a moment, there was nothing. Then suddenly, one of the beams flickered and then a yowl filled the room with new life. It was definitely Tweek.
"Ow!" came from the far end of the room, somewhere by the rusty tubular water works.
Unexpectedly, from the far end of the room, where a beam touched the wall, its reflector sparkled and crackled until the beam no longer focused properly. Unexpectedly, that particular beam deactivated. An object struck the floor with a clank and skidded across its surface some distance, and this told Jean-Claude that the dragon had disrupted the balance of the beams, for the others grew more intense and thicker and hummed more viciously.
"I'm fine, Jean-Claude. I just got caught in crossfire."
"I'll say. Are you able to move any further from your area? I kind of have this room pictured in my head."
"Don't worry. I know this room. Just let me take care of some more stuff with these beams, but don't be alarmed if I touch the floor. Also, a beam injured one of my wings. I can't fly."
"Understood. So much for flying out of here."
"Yeah, but I would like to propose two solutions that will get us out of this mess. You'll have to use your rifle, though."
"Is that so? What do you have in mind?"
Tweek inhaled and then exhaled with a breath of fire, lighting the room for a moment. This told Jean-Claude where he was.
"If only you had the flamethrowers, we could use their flames as a lighting source or a decoy. But, because we don't, I'll need you to fire your rifle sparingly. I cannot blow fire and jump at the same time. It gets too complicated. Each fire that you provide will brighten this room just enough for me to see and be sure how to move around. One I figure out what we can damage next, then I'll tell you where to aim. Afterward, we'll make up something to find a way out of this room."
"Sounds good to me. What is the signal for firing?" said Jean-Claude, slowly but carefully adjusting his rifle upward, trying not to accidentally touch the beams on each side of him.
"I'll snap my fingers for you to fire. Be ready. But first, show me your location by exposing the infrared on that rifle of yours."
From Tweek's corner, he saw a red dot flashing several times. With a nod, he then looked around and studied the beams pattern.
"Okay, I know exactly where you are. No matter how clever Viggo may be, there is always a flaw somewhere in his plans. Like these beams, they don't necessarily stretch throughout the room. Also, the floor pattern is a bit destroyed and thus we have platforms and shields. The motion trackers on the machine guns can only pick up a moving target so far before it loses track of it or that the floor will give it new targets. I noticed those tubes over there by you. If I can get over there, I can avoid the guns and figure out a way to get to you so we can escape."
"I see. Well let's get to it."
For a moment the silence was unbroken. Suddenly, Tweek snapped his fingers. Jean-Claude slid his finger on the trigger of his rifle, and pulled to fire a few bursts of light in the room. Each shot produced an orange-yellowish radiance. This was enough time for Tweek to leap from atop a computer desk to another, making his path toward the large computer chip platforms he saw amid the firing. He snapped his fingers again, and then more light filled the room for seconds. With his claws, he leapt straight head and clung to the side of a high platform, though he lost footing and touched the floor for a few seconds.
A mechanical sound reverberated as if telling them it was taking aim for motion on the floor again. Just as predicted, another machine gun fire went off for three seconds, igniting the room with more light for Jean-Claude to see his bearings. Seeing that he could possibly get closer to where Tweek was heading, he leapt off the mainframe, touched the floor, rolled past a few lower lasers, and then hid behind an object that he presumed was out of the machine guns' trajectory.
Almost instantly, a barrage of bullets relentlessly poured at his location, though most of which only came into contact with the object he took shelter behind. Tweek saw this and noticed what was going. Without reluctance, the dragon used all of this free time to quickly climb the oversized computer chips, reaching a certain height and then attempting to perform a long jump toward the water works (giant pipes). He touched ground again, and this time only one of the firing machine guns switched targets and began releasing endless rounds at him.
Tweek rolled when the bright coruscation got closer to him. Next to the tubes, he leaned back against one – the machine guns above him – and avoided the firing a few feet in front of him. He was safe for now.
"Jean-Claude? I made it to the tubes. What are you doing? Get off the floor or at least make it over to me!" Tweek yelled.
The pussycat ducked and covered his head as a bullet decal appeared on a mainframe in front of him. The targeting system on the machine gun was getting too close to home.
"I know, I know. I'm here so we could speed this up a bit. You got your light, and I got out of my tight spot. Now I just need to get past the lasers, avoid the big guns, and make it over to you. So what's your plan now, genius?"
"Fire your rifle until you empty its clip, and then slide it across the floor. When the gun firing on me turns its attention to you, I want you to slide across the floor past your weapon, and I'll meet you halfway to pull you in. The excess heat from your weapon will get the other gun's attention. Got it?"
"But what about my rifle? It'll be destroyed," Jean-Claude snarled.
"It's better to have it destroyed than you. Now hurry up. Seven minutes have already passed, and we need to make it to the roof."
"All right, I'll do it. Here—" he said, mumbling. "My mother is going to kill me for this."
"When you slide it out there, be sure to wait several seconds until you hear the machine gun go off, and then go under the beams quickly. Your body's heat signature (and its own) will only stay on the weapon for a minute or two, so by the time you should be in my reach."
"Okay, I got it. I'm firing my weapon and then sliding it out now."
Jean-Claude shook his head in disagreement, but he had no other choice. He pulled hard on the trigger of his weapon, firing constantly and smelling the exhaust from inside the barrel. Soon he was beginning to feel the heat generating off the metal. After the last round was fired, he gathered enough force behind the weapon, and then launched it to the center of the room. The weapon grated across the floor – its sound diminishing told him when it had come to a complete stop. Once the weapon stopped, the machine gun firing on Tweek ceased and desisted, turning its reticle on to the new object on the floor. When this happened, Tweek stepped out into the open and began firing his pistol at the previous gun that had Jean-Claude pinned down. When the gun firing on him stopped, Jean-Claude came out of hiding and began leaping over, sliding under, and going between the beams as quickly as his feet could carry him.
Jean-Claude continued rushing toward the flashes of the dragon's pistol, only to be stopped in his tracks midway when the first machine gun destroyed its latest target. Tweek looked over his shoulder and saw this, holstering his weapon and then sliding his long, scaly tail in the feline's direction.
"Grab a hold, quickly!" he said, turning his head to face up at the darkness where he knew the machine gun was preparing to target him.
Jean-Claude briskly crawled under another laser, trying his hardest to reach for the tail. Upon doing so, a laser burnt his shoulder a bit, but he continued to stretch out until he felt the tail. At the pain, he yipped. New hope filled him once he grabbed the tail, and then Tweek pulled him over to him and back away from out in the open just as bullets hailed over them.
"That was too close! Now how are we going to get out of here?" asked Jean-Claude, grasping his injured shoulder.
Overhead, constant brightness and the sound of the tubular systems being chipped repeatedly welcomed their ears. Soon it would not be safe for them to remain in front of the gigantic tube.
"I believe our only escape is through the water works system. These three giant tubes all lead into each other, and the biggest here has a shaft that will lead us outside. Now I have never seen it for myself, but I would have to take Rico's word for it. Once we get outside, we can go from there to reach the roof and escape."
"All right, let's do that. I'll go first, but I'll need a boost."
Tweek nodded, kneeling and putting his claws together, allowing the feline to set foot. When Jean-Claude was on both claws, he was then elevated high and fast enough to grip the round edge of the tube several feet up. He quickly climbed over the edge and flipped over before the guns could target him, and down the sides of the inner tube he slid quickly, falling down into a dark drain.
Tweek was next. He maneuvered his body for a high jump. When he leapt high enough, he kicked off a neighboring tube's ledge, and then flipped forward into the biggest one to follow Jean-Claude. He landed on his derriere – he too disappearing into the darkness of the tube.
Jean-Claude was the first to make it into the other end of the giant network of the water works, having clawed through and climbed up the side where he had seen a shaft just as Tweek described. There he climbed, gripped the edge, and pulled himself atop. He waited for a sign of the dragon, though time was running out rather quickly. Finally Tweek emerged from the big tunnel, clawing his way out and almost slipping into another pit that would take him into a smaller tube system. He caught onto the edge before falling forward, immediately pulling himself up.
He made his way to Jean-Claude who in turn helped him up to the shaft. They stood side by side, looking around the partially lit area. From the damaged parts of the tube, the night sky seeped inside where they stood.
"Okay, we go through this shaft and reach outside again. Look for something to climb once you get out. We're running out of time. Already ten minutes has passed."
"You don't have to tell me twice," Jean-Claude grinned, breaking the shaft open and crawling inside.
Jean-Claude greeted the dark starlight sky. The fresh cool air relieved him of all of his worries except for the reminder of the bombs. From where he stood, not too far away from where one of the monstrous light towers flashed over him, the jungle vista was beautiful. Late to his knowledge the sirens from inside the laboratory finally shut off.
The feline looked around for something to climb on. To his left was a rusty square platform. It was obvious this was where the water system had been draining in a previous affair. More noteworthy, a dark patch among the broken glass window from the laboratory gave away a soft mound of dirt – there was no telling where that would lead. Straight ahead was a scary eight feet drop to the jungle floor below. And his right, a solid steel wall that pointed straight up to the rooftop, though there was no clear sign that something, if anything, would lead him up. Suddenly, Tweek came out of the small shaft.
"Did you find anything that would take us up to the roof?" asked the dragon.
"No, not yet."
Jean-Claude looked all around, but found nothing of use. But, when he looked directly behind him and above the shaft, he found a small ladder leading straight up. Much of the ladder was ripped asunder in a few places, but that was not about to stop him from escaping. The feline pointed up, gaining the dragon's attention.
"There it is, hiding behind us the whole time. Let's climb, quickly!"
The two finally reached the rooftop, only to be welcomed by more unforgiving sidewinders drawing their weapons on them. The red lizards approached slowly, not taking any chances to commence a skirmish. There was no apparent leader this time, so this only led the Fur Fighters to believe they were the second reinforcements that had been waiting the whole time, totally unaware of the events in the complex.
"Don't move, Fur Fighters," demanded one of the lizards.
"Where do you guys keep coming from?" asked Tweek, folding his arms and smirking.
"We come from all over. Shina has dispatched sentries everywhere."
Tweek blinked. "There is that name again. Who is Shina? Does this Shina have anything to do with the attack against the Fur Fighter Village?"
"Shina? Monsieur, you knew about this the whole time, mon ami?" Jean-Claude turned to Tweek, secretly reaching behind him and handing over his empty pistol.
"I heard one of them mention the name in the laboratory. That doesn't explain much about this Shina," answered Tweek, reloading the new pistol in his claw behind him.
"Silence! As Sidewinders, we want to know what you did to our ballistic flyer. Where is he?"
Tweek and Jean-Claude stared at each other, and then a smile played on their faces.
"Oh! Them? The jet pack, dude? He caught on fire."
"And his buddies exploded into little ice cubes," added Tweek.
A commotion began among the lizards until one of them spoke again. Tweek quickly finished reloading his newly acquired pistol, snapping the revolver shut. His other claw sneaked for his other pistol. He was ready for a battle. Jean-Claude knew this, and saw that the dragon held both pistols behind his back, preparing to reveal them at a moment's notice.
"You mean you fluffed him? If that is the case, then we'll drop you where you stand. Men, fire at will."
The lizards aimed their shotguns at the two Fur Fighters. Instinctively, Tweek revealed his dual firearms and dropped two of them in that instant. The lizards scattered and returned heavy fire when suddenly a low rumbled erupted and made the rooftop vibrate. The tremor grew severe when it knocked everyone off their feet. Not only did it make standing difficult but vision as well – a constant rocking from side to side prevented the lizards from walking straight. For the Fur Fighters, they could barely run away in a straight line. Firing any weapon was out of the question as long as the trembles continued.
Around the rooftop, some of the light towers began to uproot itself and sway. The spires wailed as the swaying became too turbulent. Suspension wires that held the spires equally together broke with a sickening snap, and then an invisible line of destruction swept across the roof, over the lizards, tossing up rocks in every direction. Fluff instantly filled the air. For Jean-Claude and Tweek, they knew what would happen to them if they did not make it off the rooftop in time.
"Whoa! Did you see that? The wires split them in half!" cried Tweek.
"Yeah, the explosions have already begun. We must find a way off this crazy place."
Jean-Claude looked around, noticing how a few of the spires began to tilt and fall on each other, forming a type of bridge down to the jungle.
"I got an idea! Let's jump on the last light tower and coast down to the jungle floor? If we land on a tree, at least we won't hurt ourselves too much. Care to jump first?"
"Okay, I'll go first. Stay right behind me just in case you don't snag onto the tower," said Tweek, tucking his wings behind him tightly and then preparing for the jump.
The red dragon took off, followed closely behind by Jean-Claude. While they ran across the roof, toward the last tower that remained standing, more suspension wires snapped and tore across the rooftop behind them – tossing rocks in every direction. When they approached the edge, Tweek was the first to leap toward the tower with his claws stretched out.
The drop lasted for several seconds until the tower became bigger in Tweek's eyes. He slammed into the side of it, clawing drastically to stay on it. Moments later, secondary claws pierced into his back, and he cried in pain.
The red dragon grimaced as he felt Jean-Claude sinking his claws into his back, through the scales to hold on for dear life. At first, Tweek struggled to keep his claws on the steel structure, and slowly but steadily they slid downward. A large wire stretched from the tower to an unknown part of the jungle. Seeing this, Jean-Claude pointed downward, telling the dragon to slide down to a ledge where they could reach it.
Tweek released the steel rod carefully, reducing the speed of their descent. When his feet reached the ledge, one of many sphincters on the spire, Jean-Claude grappled down Tweek's tail, and placed his feet on the ledge. Once he was on it securely, he released the dragon's tail and began making his way toward the wire. Tweek leapt off the side of the tower and landed a few feet behind the feline.
"Come on, we can make it!" Jean-Claude said, wrapping an arm around the wire and holding it with his other paw tightly.
Slowly at first, the cat jumped off the ledge of the tower and began sliding down to the jungle. His image quickly faded into the darkness when the slide became faster. Tweek looked for something to use to slide down the wire without hurting himself. He found a piece of loose metal wiring sticking out from the ledge. Folding it into a u-shape, he placed it on the wire and held both ends of it – he too sliding down quickly. Moments after escaping from the base, a final explosion disintegrated the remains of the island base, sending hundreds of pieces of shrapnel and framework everywhere. Fiery clouds of epic proportions warmed Tweek's back the last few seconds of his ride down the wire. When he released, he fell several feet above the treetops, and disappeared into the darkness too.
Tweek used his arms to grab a hold of a tree branch; he spun on it twice before releasing and landing on his feet. Jean-Claude had been waiting for him, by the end of the wire where he found a small shelter of some sort made of bamboo.
"Take cover!" the feline shouted, crouching behind a tree and holding head.
Tweek followed suit and waited for whatever was coming their way. Trees rustled when debris smacked into them, setting them on fire too or toppling them. Various rumble from the base rained down on them, destroying whatever it struck – splitting trees in two and spreading even more fire. Unexpectedly, several large quakes told them that the light towers were the last things to plummet. Their vision rocked violently when the closest tower came down not too far from them, taking out an entire region of the jungle. When all was quiet and free of shaking, the two came out of hiding.
"What a fun ride, no?" Jean-Claude chuckled, heading for the shelter.
"What did you find here?"
Tweek moseyed over, undoing his wings and giving them some room. When he got closer, he became clear what the pussycat found. Inside the shelter which was used as an outpost for a guard, inside were the last of the golden tokens.
"Wow! There they are."
"Indeed, now we can go home. Perhaps it was a good idea the others didn't get all mixed up in this after all, eh?"
Tweek nodded, rubbing his sore wing.
"Yeah, we had to go through a lot."
"Still," Jean-Claude frowned while collecting the last of the tokens, "I wonder who this Shina is. We don't know what she is, where she is, and what side she is on for sure."
"Whoever she is, she can't be on our side because she sent those lizards after us. Do you think she had anything to do with the attack on The Village?"
Jean-Claude shrugged. "I can't really say, mon ami. It's too early to tell."
Tweek stepped inside the office and ripped a piece of paper off the wall. His eyes read over it. Slowly, he raised his head, and a look of revelation shown. Jean-Claude walked over to dragon, pulling the top side of the paper outward. Suddenly, the truth came to him too.
"This is a map of … the island, or I should say the isle," said Jean-Claude.
"Yes, but we never saw these other two isles before. Are they uncharted territories? We are on Secret Island, here."—he pointed on the map—"But look at this: Colony A and Colony B. What are they?"
"Here, look over their details – Colony A, research facility and pharmaceutical; Colony B, biological weapons testing site."
"So this is only the beginning of our investigation? We still have two more islands to check out? There goes the option of returning home … right out the window."
"Yeah, but at least we now have unlimited access to the teleporters, so if we need the others, we can summon them at any time. Plus, you're hurt. I'll send you back to recover. I suppose Chung would like to tag along for this next adventure."
"Yeah, you're right. I am extensively damaged. It'll take some time for my wing to heal, but as soon as it does, we can fly to new locations. I'll tell Chung you've invited him," Tweek smiled. "Oh, look. There is more. Project Ecnal. That is a small island connected to Colony B. I wonder what Viggo hid there. Project … Ecnal?"
"I wonder the same too. Project Ecnal? Sounds eerie. But first, let's head to Colony A, and then to Colony B to gather the details."
Tweek folded the map and gave it to Jean-Claude. Together, they stepped out of the office, approaching the beach.
"Looks like we're heading north. But how do we get to Colony A?" Jean-Claude asked.
Tweek massaged his sore wing, and slowly walked away from the feline. He turned his head to gaze across the ocean in the direction where home was. He sighed heavily. And when he turned his head as to look over his shoulder, all he said was…