SWAT KATS: ONE SHOT HALLOWEEN STORIES
#1: Don't Go Out Into the Woods Tonight
"The sounds of the beast comes to you at night, it's looking for something...but what? Is it you?"
In the dark forest where animals howl at the moon, the sound of footsteps is heard, a wooden stick cracks. Around a cozy campfire, the rosy glow pushing the darkness back, are three Kats; one is a big tabby named Chance Furlong, the second is a slim built and small in stature tom named Jake Clawson, Chance's mate, and the last member of the group is a very young tom, their son, Danny .
Danny was just seven years old and like every Kit his age, he was bored. He didn't want to be here but his parents had dragged him to the woods saying it was important they go. He'd whined a bit, saying he'd much rather go trick or treating with his friends this year but they just shook their heads, so here they were, surrounded by this creepy forest on Halloween.
Sighing, he muttered mutinously, "I could have had a haul of candy by now, but noo...I'm stuck here listening to the animals howl." He gave his parents a glare but they ignored him, snuggling close to each other affectionately.
Danny rolled his and stared down at the stick he was holding in the fire, his marshmallow was nearly charred. He cursed, quickly pulling it out then blowing on it. When it was cooled enough he began carefully eating the soft gooey treat.
It didn't however improve his mood. 'Crud! I hate this place….why are we even here?' He thought bitterly. Glancing up, he noticed they were looking at him.
"Hey, why the sour face, Danny," Jake asked, concerned.
"It's nothing," Danny said flatly, staring back into the fire. Telling them he just wanted to go home would be whining and he'd been told to stop that so he had nothing else to say.
"That's not an answer. Why are you upset?" Chance persisted, his face set in concerned lines.
Danny just shrugged his shoulders and refused to say anything further.
A bit annoyed now, Chance growled. "Don't cop an attitude, Danny," his father warned. "Now what's bugging you?"
Sighing, Danny looked up and into Chance's eyes. "Why are we here? I wanted to be with my friends tonight but instead we're out here. Why?"
Jake and Chance gave each other a significant look before Jake, his mother, said, "I understand you're frustrated and bored but you'll just have to wait a bit longer for your answer."
Huffing in anger, Danny jumped to his feet and began to stalk away.
"Where are you going?" Jake asked, quietly.
"To bed!" Danny snapped, continuing on to the big tent pitched nearby.
"Night then," his mother's voice trailed after him.
Danny didn't respond as he reached the tent and unzipped the doorway. He stepped inside and zipped it up again. Going to his sleeping bag, he flopped down on his back and stared up at the ceiling, fuming.
"Stupid camp...stupid woods..." he continued to grouse until sleep rolled over him.
The wind blew its cool spears around making the trees dance. The fire died down and the campsite was deathly silent. Inside the tent, Danny was having a nightmare causing him to twist and turn in his sleeping bag.
In his nightmare, Danny was in the woods, running from something he could hear but not see. A growling sound came out of the dark but he couldn't tell what it was. Was it hungry? Was it hunting for dinner like deer? Was the prey somewhere near him?
He could hear it getting closer and closer but he didn't dare stop running to see how close it truly was, fear giving his feet wings, he hurtled through the dark woods trying desperately to escape the threat behind him.
Then he woke suddenly, gasping and shaking from the realness of the dream. He looked around the tent frantically then relaxed when he realized it had been only a dream. However, he also realized his parents weren't in the tent with him.
Where could they be this late? And why would they leave him alone with all those animals hunting outside. Thinking to go look for them, Danny turned to the door and gasped. Huge rents had torn open the front of the tent like an animal had tried to get in.
Terrified, he was even more worried where his parents might be with such a creature prowling around. Though very afraid, little Danny went to the hole in the tent and peered out. The campfire was dead and it was dark and silent out with only the moon casting any light. His parents were no where in sight.
Slipping outside, he searched around the campsite, carefully, but didn't dare go anywhere into the woods itself. Frightened, he called for his parents.
"Mom…..dad where are you?"
His cries, however, received the wrong response as a low growl sounded close by. He spun around trying to find where the growl was coming from but could see nothing then yet another growl sounded from the darkness. That goaded him into running madly in the opposite direction from the growls. Tears in his eyes, he fled...barely seeing the rocks, tree limbs, and bushes he raced through...his only thought was to escape whatever was out there.
He had no idea how long he'd run until he tripped over something and fell face down. He lay there stunned, heaving for breathe and listening hard. Except for his hard panting, it seemed he had escaped whatever had been chasing him. As he sat up and looked around, he realized he was very lost. He had no idea where their campsite was.
Having no idea what else to do and still very much afraid, he decided to continue on in the direction he was going, hoping he would find either his parents or help. He'd forgotten the cardinal rule of being lost which was never wander...always stay put...let help find you. So he made it hard for searchers as he moved as fast as he dared deeper into the woods.
As he walked hurriedly, his mind wondered if his parents were even alive. 'Don't go there, Danny...they're both strong and brave...they'll be okay and find me.' He told himself, to keep his courage up.
Suddenly, he heard the sound of Kat's voices somewhere ahead of him. With a cry of relief, he ran toward the noise. As he burst into a clearing, he saw a bonfire with several toms sitting around it with guns nearby...hunters probably.
Running toward them, he yelled, "help me...something is after me!"
The hunters jumped to their feet and two of them hurried to Danny's side, one sweeping him up into his arms and comforting the frightened kitten.
"Poor kitten, you're shaking like a leaf. What happened? Where's your parents?" The hunter asked, kindly.
"I don't know but, something attacked my tent while I was sleeping and when I looked out, my parents were gone and something was growling so I ran," Danny rushed to say, still gulping for air, his heart hammering in his ears.
The two hunters shared a grim look. The other hunter said, "James, I think it might be those blasted wolves. Let's take him to the camp where John can decide what we need to do now."
The one holding Danny nodded. "It's alright kitten, we'll keep you safe and try to find your parents, don't worry." He carried Danny to the huge fire and circle of tents. They were greeted by the rest of the hunters who shot questions at them but the one without the kitten held up a paw for silence and got it.
"John, this kitten's campsite was attacked and his parents are missing. He said he heard growls and fled." He addressed a big tom sitting on a log.
The one holding Danny gently lowered the kitten to his feet as the big tom rose to his feet and came closer to him. The tom was solid black with multiple scars on his face and had red eyes that gleamed in the firelight.
James who had been carrying the kitten, bowed his head and said respectfully, "he's a brave little thing and seems to have suffered no harm except fright. We suspect the wolves are the ones that attacked his camp, master."
The big Kat known as John knelt down so he could be face to face with Danny. In a deep voice, he asked, "So they attacked your camp, eh? Did you get bitten?" He gently reached out to check Danny over for any injuries.
"I only heard them, sir, not seen them. What are they?" Danny asked, shakily, wondering how these toms knew for certain what had been stalking him.
John sighed, continuing his search of Danny's body as he answered the kitten's question. "You were lucky then. These things have been known to hunt Kats and eat them. We don't know how many there are but we've been trying to eradicate them for some time now." It was then that John found a red-like stripe on the kitten's neck. "Where did you get this mark?" He asked sharply.
"Huh? Oh, it's just a birth mark...I was born with it," Danny said, puzzled why John was so interested in it.
John's expression hardened as he stood up abruptly, pulling a knife from somewhere and eyeing Danny coldly. The two hunters standing with him moved closer and clutched their guns more tightly. Danny was confused by their sudden hostility.
"You're their kit! Where are they hiding...tell me now!" He growled menacingly.
Shocked, Danny huddled in fear as he stared up at the adults threatening him. "I don't know what you're talking about. Please, help me find my parents or take me home!" He pleaded, terror beginning to race down his spine.
John snarled and swung a fist at Danny, knocking the poor kitten off his feet and to the ground. Danny screamed in pain and curled up holding his face and whimpering.
Spitting on the writhing kitten, John turned to the other hunters. "This is one of their kits. We can't allow it to live. Beat it to death!" He ordered, coldly.
As the cruel toms began to move toward the kitten, their fire suddenly snuffed itself out. Startled, all the hunters froze and looked around urgently, except for John, their eyes began to grow large with fear.
Out of the sudden dark, something heavy moved swiftly then someone screamed in agony. Sounds of growls and ripping flesh were heard next causing a panic as the hunters fled before the terror coming at them in the dark.
Danny couldn't see what was going on and he didn't dare move from his huddled position on the ground. His face hurt fiercely and his eyes were filled with tears but all he saw was darkness and all he heard were those horrible screams and ripping sounds. Then, as suddenly as it happened, everything went quiet. The bonfire burst back to life, illuminating the scene.
What he saw made his heart stutter. There was no sign of the hunters only blood on the ground, ripped clothing, scattered cookware, destroyed tents, and guns. But there was something else standing there watching him with bloody red eyes...two big, black furred beasts unlike anything he'd seen before.
Danny whimpered, "please don't hurt me." He shook with fear as one of the big beasts came close to him and licked his face tenderly. He blinked in shock.
The pair looked around a moment, apparently checking to be sure it was safe before returning their attention to him. The other beast gently used its paw to turn Danny's head. It growled when it saw the beginning black eye and bruised cheek.
Rumbling in its throat it began to lick the injured area making Danny wince in pain but very quickly it began to feel better to his surprise.
A weird suspicion crept into Danny's mind as he remembered what John had said and came to a stunning conclusion. "M-mom? D-dad?"
Making little huffing, whining noises, it seemed they were telling him, he was right. They stopped licking him and turned their heads up towards the moon and howled.
Danny was shocked. His parents were the strange creatures, John had said he was killing? How did it happen? His parents weren't in any shape to answer his questions right now and he wondered what he was supposed to do for the moment until they could.
Suddenly, he began to feel a little strange. A warm sensation began to build within him then his bones seemed to stretch. It was painful causing him to whimper as his face extended and his limbs got longer. His fur thickened and his mind fell into a haze for a time.
When the pain stopped and the haze lifted from his mind, he felt completely different. He looked down at himself and saw he had changed to a smaller version of the pair watching him. He tried to stand but wasn't used to being on four feet instead of two.
His father came over and grabbed him by the scruff of the neck and began to carry him away into the woods.
Next to him his mom trotted. In wolf language, Jake asked, "well son, how do you like your new self? You hungry?"
Feeling kind of odd being carried in his father's mouth, Danny could only say, "you two have a lot of explaining to do."
Jake just gave him a wolfish grin.
A/N: Please Review! Next story is coming up.
Thank you Ulyferal ^_^ for been my beta.