HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT
Chapter 18: Epilogue
More than a week had passed and the planetary population was still gradually learning their war was finally over. The surviving leaders of the various sects except the red, made up a new council government for their world. Aurora was the Green Sect's council member but she only agreed as long as they understood she would not be residing on Caledor.
That had caused some consternation but there was no changing her mind. She promised to visit once a month to hear complaints, solve problems, and handle the running of the sect. There wouldn't be much since her sect had nearly been decimated and those that had survived needed lots of care to heal the physical and emotional damaged they had suffered. It would take decades before there were enough of them to even make a sect.
The red sect were locked up in a prison that was made up of their leaders former headquarters. Razor spent a great deal of time with a large staff of guards and engineers to teach them, how to monitor the huge negator he built to keep the red sect helpless.
He had discovered a way with Hackle's assistance, to alter the negator from a purely technological device based on science to one that could run entirely on magic. This allowed the inhabitants to be able to use it to lock up any who broke the law, making it the first prison of its kind on Caledor.
Razor also trained the engineer's on some basic robotic knowledge so they would know how to deal with the robot army Professor Hackle bequeathed them. It would help the Caldorian's to keep the peace as well as help rebuild their world.
Derek the Strong, however, faced a different fate. His crimes were the most heinous and putting him in with his former soldiers was not a good idea. He required a more permanent form of incarceration that would prevent him being a threat ever again. So after discussing many different options, the fledgling council finally decided on sending Derek into another dimension where he could live out his life and not harm anyone else. Despite his howls of fury, he was summarily banished to a dimension where magic would not work..
As for the SWAT Kats, the grateful people of the planet put on a huge party and celebration for them including Aurora, who was mortally embarrassed by all the attention.
"They love you babe and they need this to feel better about themselves. They are free again and you're responsible," her mate murmured in her ear as yet another toast and cheers were directed her way.
"I know...its just a little overwhelming. I only did what I felt was right," she muttered, still glowing with embarrassment but her dark coat hid most of it.
"Well, how about we just slip away then? The party is winding down anyway and we'd like to get home," T-Bone suggested softly.
She flashed him a grateful smile and planted a kiss on his lips. "Best suggestion I've heard all day. Let's go!"
Grinning in amusement, T-Bone stood up, waved to several people he'd gotten to know while Aurora slipped out of her seat and snuck out behind him. Razor had noted her departure and gave his partner a questioning look.
Without saying anything, his partner gave a brief nod and a tilt of his head toward the Turbokat, that could be seen through the window of the banquet hall, to indicate they were leaving. A small smile and a look of eagerness crossed Razor's face as he too got up and followed his partner out of the hall.
On the way out, Aurora sent a runner to go get the members that had helped her originally to open the portal. It took only fifteen minutes for them to arrive and by then, Aurora had already completed the preparations and was waiting for the others to join her.
"Aurora, I wish I had more time to get to know you better but I know you have much to do in your adopted home. Perhaps we can get a little time when I see you next mont,." Tanara suggested warmly, giving her a hug.
Returning the hug and grinning back at the brave yellow sect leader, Aurora said, "I'd like that. You're a great warrior and I know you'll do a wonderful job helping our world get back on its feet. However, I don't envy you all the work that's facing you to accomplish that. Also, don't forget, I'll be bringing back all my red force prisoners on my return trip, so insure you have a guard detail ready to receive them."
"We'll be ready," Tanara assured her. Grinning, she turned to T-Bone. "You take care of her, warrior. She is very important to us."
"I promise. She's very important to me too, you know," T-Bone said solemnly.
After saying farewell to all the others standing near, the three boarded the Turbokat. With no fanfare, the Turbokat lifted a few feet from the ground and carefully went through the yawning opening of the portal, appearing once more in Professor Hackle's lab.
Sighing in relief, T-Bone lowered the Turbokat to the ground but didn't shut down as they planned to leave immediately. Aurora jumped down and aided her brethren in closing the portal. She swayed on her feet when it finally closed with an audible pop, her body limp with exhaustion.
"You okay, kitten?" T-Bone asked worriedly, as he held her close.
"I'll be alright, just takes a lot out of me is all."
"So things went well?" Professor Hackle asked as he and Dr. Sinian approached them to find out what had happened.
"Perfectly and your robots did themselves proud. We left a world free of tyranny and making its way back to a peaceful existence," T-Bone said grinning from ear to ear.
"Oh, that is wonderful news and I am grateful my robots are finally doing what I hoped they'd be doing here...helping a world be a better place." He said with a broad and happy smile.
"My people are very pleased with them, Professor. It will help them recover so much faster without having to overuse magic to do it," Aurora said warmly.
"I'm happy to hear it!"
"I agree, that is fantastic news, but I thought you would be staying on your world, Aurora?" Dr. Sinian asked, surprise in her voice.
"No, I have too many duties here as well as there. I couldn't, in good conscious, leave Megakat City at the mercy of an incompetent leader not with those omegas still around. The good news is now I'll be able to use magic to get rid of them. However, I still will appear male and no one but us here will know what and who I really am and that must remain a secret. Clear?" She said firmly.
"Of course. None shall hear of it from me," Hackle said solemnly.
"Nor from me, Commander, though taking on so much responsibility could be detrimental to your health. You need to take care of yourself because so many will now depend on you and that's a heavy burden for any one person to deal with," Dr. Sinian warned her gently.
"Thank you for your concern and I'll do my best...but it won't be easy..." she sighed, shaking her head at the enormity of the task she'd set herself.
"Just don't overextend yourself Commander. You have a right to rest too, you know," Hackle chided her, almost reading her mind.
"I'll see that she does, Professor, don't worry. After all, I'm her mate," T-Bone growled, wrapping a possessive arm around her waist.
She squeaked in surprise.
The Professor's eyebrows raised in surprise. "Indeed?" Dr. Sinian was rather nonplused herself at this unexpected news.
"According to her people we are mates. So, I'll be making sure she takes care of herself," T-Bone repeated. Aurora just stared at him in shock but before she could object, he gave her a passionate kiss.
They were both breathing hard when they parted. Razor just rolled his eyes behind his mask
"Well, congratulations you two," the Professor said, eyes gleaming with pleased surprise.
"That's wonderful and may I say, I'm pleased that you decided to stay, Aurora. The enforcers and Megakat City need you here," Abi said sincerely.
Aurora smiled at them both, still feeling very giddy after that hot kiss. She waved at the two scientists as the three headed for the Turbokat.
"How about I fly and drop you two lovebirds off at Feral's apartment? Then I can go home and finally get some rest, I'm bushed!" Razor snorted in amusement at the pair making goo goo eyes at each other.
"That work for you, love?" T-Bone purred in her ear, questioningly, as he prepared to jump to the cockpit.
"Uh...okay...it's really too late in the day to do much else," she agreed demurely, unable to think of a reason to say no with his body so close to hers.
The three leaped to the wing, Razor took the pilot's seat and T-Bone with Aurora, took the weapon's seat and jump seat, respectively.
After a wonderfully relaxing evening, Feral returned to work. He didn't explain to anyone where he'd been for the last few days but since the city had been fairly quiet and the strange magic users were safely jailed, no one called him on it.
All except Steele, who whined about the paperwork load and Feral failing to notify him that he would be missing and out of communication for several days. Feral just told him it was secret and on a need to know basis only then booted him from his office. Sighing in relief, he got down to work to undo what Steele had done to his files.
A month later, in the dead of night and with fake orders in paw, Feral and warriors from her home world came and took the prisoners of the red force leader. They hurriedly hauled them in two big trucks...Razor secretly drove one while Aurora drove another...toward an abandoned airfield. T-Bone waited for them in the Turbokat.
The prisoners were loaded aboard the jet quickly with their guards then Aurora opened the portal with the help of other sect members from the other side. Soon the prisoners were being taken to the prison back on their own world once more. After dealing with affairs that needed her attention, she finished up within four days and returned to Megakat City. Her only explanation was the prisoners had been extradited to a place where they couldn't use their magic ever again.
Ms. Briggs had been very suspicious of all this but Feral would only tell her that he had taken care of their problem legally but he couldn't discuss it further with her. She would have to be satisfied that a serious threat had been taken away. Though unhappy, Callie dropped it. She did notice, though, that Feral got along much better with the SWAT Kats than before.
She knew Feral couldn't legally accept the SWAT Kats as part of the defense team against Megakat City's enemies but he did make it clear he would tolerate their presence as long as they didn't break the law and that made her happy. Now if only they could get rid of the omegas things would be truly wonderful.
As life got back to normal, Aurora found T-Bone taking every opportunity to be with her. He was extremely careful, slipping into her apartment late at night to be with her and off again, early in the mornings. She couldn't complain, he was an exceptional lover and she needed the TLC.
Rather than risk him being spotted, she gave in and made arrangements with him for a set time when they wanted to be together, then she would send for him by magic. Jake found it startling at times to have his partner just pop in at breakfast time, a look of contentment on the tabby's face.
He sighed, resigned that his partner was well and truly mated to the beautiful Aurora but he was happy for his best friend and hoped one day to be equally lucky.
Though she was never obvious, Aurora now used her magic a little more frequently to help fight the omegas. Less of her enforcers were being killed and the city suffered less damage. No one ever learned that the powerful male known as Ulysses Feral was actually female.
Without anyone being aware of it, she and the SWAT Kats had naturally fallen into the habit of working together. Often the SWAT Kats would herd an omega into a secluded area where Aurora could then dispatch them.
This was how they finally got rid of Viper. She used her magic to remove his mutant abilities leaving Purvis back to his original form. He was arrested and would not be released for quite some time. Turmoil found her fleet returned to the country she came from and a barrier preventing her from ever returning to Megakat City.
This brought some measure of peace to the city. They still had Dark Kat and the Pastmaster to deal with but at the moment those two remained invisible.
T-Bone was now able to enjoy his mate more without interruption. They talked about finding themselves a place of their own but hadn't seriously pursued it yet. One day, perhaps, Aurora could reveal herself and declare T-Bone as her mate but, until that time they behaved as a loving couple in private and as antagonists in public.
What the future held for them, they didn't know but for now, they were blissfully happy.