Chapter VIII: Bearer of Havoc


Tygra hated the helplessness, the binoculars didn't help, it didn't help him or give him the power to do something. He peered through the glassed visor with anxiety and dread. But it wasn't just the peril but the realization of who they were just as Panthro made his own comment on them.

'Never seen them before, who are they?' He said this aloud to himself inviting Tygra to give his own thought but when he didn't respond Panthro looked at him and saw a shock that was traumatic, he had seen the skeleton from a closet.

'You met them before haven't you?'

'You weren't there at the time' Tygra said quietly 'That was when they came. In the night'

Panthro's face hardened, stone-faced at what the young prince was harking back to, his service as a soldier was extensive, covering campaigns within and beyond the empire of the cats but there was one that he regretted not being there for. How typical that he was there for the seemingly meaningless wars but not there when it mattered. 'The Hyaenidae or the Lunataks to their enemies, I recall the name; it was a campaign Grune always fondly talked about' Expressed with annoyance, hints of professional envy towards a former friend. 'Albeit it too much, because he knew I was holed up as the prisoner of the dogs. The Hyaenidae was always referred to as 'Grune's campaign' because of how he took on the armies with so little of his own, outnumbered 12-1 but he did it' Despite the obvious fallout and his ill fate Panthro still didn't begrudge Grune on some things, his recod for or worse was always a respectable one.

'Yet' He added 'It was Lynx-O, so I'm told, that made the name for him, even though he wasn't at the campaign.' With that he also remembered Grune's less than happy commentary about that, was it one more factor that later made him traitor?

'Lynx-O gave everything, including his sight, yet he still managed to save me and help father gain the upper hand, if the lizards had a chance to do something they didn't do it when it mattered, it was just him that decided everything.'

Tygra's memories betrayed him, his recount of the infamous ambush had him blurt out more details then was needed, and emotion was dictating his factual account. It was news to Panthro, it was no secret Lynx-O was more sympathetic towards Lizards, but he brought some amidst a unit of cats? 'I guess the court missed out a few details when I returned to service'

'They didn't miss anything, it was Lynx-O who saved everyone, the lizards didn't' His eyes seemed to widen further, almost reverting to child like eyes, lost innocence recounting evil at first sight. 'Those things came without warning as the carriage was going back to Thundera, we were nearly out of the woods when they came, with their claws and teeth...and the laugh' He was silent, a tear escaped from his tortured eyes. 'The laugh from their leader was horrible...in the end father won, but my mother was hurt, she even went into labour early as a result...if only we had been closer to the city, if only-'

'I understand, when I came back to service I spent many years wondering the same thing, how different it could had been there if I had been there too, by the time I returned the procession was all but over, all there was, was a tomb with her legacy inscribed, leaving behind a king and a city that was forever changed. It was said their leader carried an weapon of some sort, at the time I thought they retrieved plun-darr from the cursed mountain. There were no records of what it was exactly'

It doesn't matter, it was destroyed and so was their leader'

'But someone is leading them now, and judging by their toys I suspect it's 'you know who''

Panthro's face froze; his eyes shifted to his ear, and put his hand on it. 'Dobo? Why's what's' His eyes seemed to widen as what he heard spooked him. He looked at Tygra. 'Keep an eye on the situation, but get ready to move, I'm going to start the Tank'

'What? Now? How about we drive in for Cheetara?'

'I just heard something roar at Dobo and the kid down there, they need help. Do what you can but when the Tank starts were going.'

'We can't leave Cheetara!'

'I have minutes to save those two!'

Tygra looked out again at the canyon as he began to plan how to save her saw something dark lurk in the distance of his vision, it was further from the group, it was there for a second as if it was aware of being watched and hid from sight.

Or maybe he just imagined it...


Options were running out the longer the two kept running. It was clear to Dobo the thing that was after them would surely catch upto them before they could get to the tank or if the tank could get to them. He could hear the thing snarl closer.

'Remember' He said to Kat 'Don't turn back, just keep focused' No sooner did he say that did he see the young cat outpace him drastically

'I TURNED BACK! I TURNED BACK!'

Dobo raised an eyebrow and turned, last he checked they could only hear and not see the thing-

Till he saw its teeth. He vividly saw a large limbless mass, comparable to a worm but with tough hide of cyan colouring, eyeless face and daggered teeth with even tusks at the side of it's monstrous as it broke through rock as it swam through water, but it was the teeth that caught his eyes, and for good reason too! Dobo understood now where the cat got his extra pace from as he had the motivation as well as the thing slithered after him.

He planned to take a few more strides and aim for the small opening on the right, maybe if he could get through he had hoped till as if the beast knew of his movement and moved round to corner him off. It towered him yet strangely it was no way near the height and width of the tunnel itself, but it was big enough to eat him whole. It had no eyes but it smelled and savoured his scent, the teeth revered from the lips and it hissed out its hunger, Dobo drew out his sword, he hoped maybe he could catch it by the tip of it's tongue, make it whelp and roll back whilst trying to run again. Or perhaps he wondered now would be a good time to reflect on his life as he saw the size of its opening jaw and realized he was as good as gone.

'Hey!' It caught the creature's attention turning to see Kat who was on a hoverboard, Dobo had the chance at least to see those things in action, and to see a device move without a wheel was indeed strange. 'What are you doing? Run!' Shouted Dobo, Kat answered to him but looked at him as if it should had been obvious to begin with. 'Saving you of course' Kat turned to mock the creature 'Ok big worm it's hero time!'

The creature charged, and missed, the hoverboard was superbly agile, evading the thing with ease, clearly infuriated on biting nothing then thin air it turned on the young cat, giving chase once more and trying to bite again, the easiness Kat was having, when earlier he was fearing for his life set his blood flowing with confidence though as Dobo noted, too much of it.

'Be careful! You're underestimating it!'

'Oh c'mon, he isn't any trouble!' The board moved swiftly aside as the creature hit the wall head on, it shook its head more frustrated than hurt. It swiped again and missed, hearing a razz from a tongue in response. Kat felt he had this handled and repeated the same side step trick as before but the creature tried a new tactic, it honed it's hearing on the vibrations of the air pushed down by the hovergoard as it levitated, where it went more pressure was exerted on its direction. The creature lunged but moved its head moved deceptively away, whilst picking up the vibrations of the hoverboard's direction before swinging in with powerful speed, knocking the board off the feet of the cat. This time Kat panicked but his fall had an ironic saviour in that of the creature itself landing on its worm like back and sliding all the way down completed with a bumpy landing on the rocky ground.

'oww!' Rubbing the sore points that pattered all around him he gasped as heard earth move towards him and saw the large thing move towards him, mouth raised and killing strike poised.

'Hey!' Dobo's challenge to the creature wasn't just with a word, it was backed with a fist sized rock he threw with incredibly accuracy hitting the thing on the side of its forehead. It turned again to its former target, still posed in a striking position, it struck out at surprising speeds but Dobo now saw the speed thing was capable of and back flipped, rock broke and a muffled cry of anger over a missed kill followed. Reflexing his gladiator trained body to use, he landed on his feet and ran towards it. His 'plan' was to grab this worm like serpent by the tusk on its side jaw now that the thing was low enough to be reached. He had to be quick as the thing wasn't slowed down by its earlier attempt, but the creature's head was already ten feet and slightly more in the air as it's body pulled it out, but cats weren't the only high jumpers as he proved, the jump was high and his claws gave the essential grip he needed when it gripped the ivory tusk of the beast. The grip was strong for now, but one handed as he was, the other took a swipe at the only weak point he could think for a creature that moved through stone; the corner of its mouth where flesh surely had to be soft.

The swipe of cold metal delivered a sharp hellish scream as the soft spot was it. Dobo was holding onto chance and hoped the kid would know better and be running right about now, at best he could try to hit the creature several more times and try to discourage it from attacking any further.

At worst...

The creature shock it's head violently, livid in its body language as it lashed about and roaring with fury, Dobo struggled to hold onto his sword and was losing his grip, then the thing flipped him into the air. The flip was a short by a creature of such size and strength, but with mouth open and teeth opening up into a trapdoor of darkness and death Dobo concluded he was going to be made into a quick meal by this eyeless beast, everything had slowed down or moved in at the rate of his breathing, as he breathed in he felt himself thrown up and could see the creature gradually open his mouth, the fall was different, it felt slow first but the weight of the drop was picking up momentum and the creature was stretching upto him lasing out with snapping ferocity only for it to turn completely distracted, the mouth being it's only hint of any expression of it shown panic. So distracted by the side of the thing's jaws that Dobo was oblivious to something beating through solid stone to where he was, only when the creature's head was turned did he feel an incoming blizzard of dust and debris something had ripped through solid wall and all Dobo could see was the worm like creature swamped by a mass of red, it was huge, so large that when he saw it, he hit it onto of its back, tumbling uncontrollably on red sea of scales that he had no time to get a grip on anything then there was air and he was falling again, he had no breath in his lungs to cry out and only gasp and with a bang his back hit something, his fall wasn't long and nor was it on rock and there was a cat staring at him with a grin.

'You know there's a charge for this' Smiled Kat. Dobo sat up to find himself on the board, any other day he would be fascinated by this thing but he saw no amusement in the cat's grin, especially at a time like this. 'Just get us out of here!'

The board was kicked into motion and sped away from danger, Dobo had time to quickly see what it was that attacked the eyeless monstrosity, it was a massive four legged creature, so large it was a likely candidate for burrowing the holes in the first place, moving with large stumps on its back that gained Dobo's curiosity. The creature stomped on the other creature with its large foot and whipped it's tail in fury. It's mouth was large and long breathing hot air before he gasped at seeing fire spat out from it's mouth, the roaring flames incinerated the other creature with such ease.

'Cool' Kat was clearly impressed, Dobo wasn't.

'Just keep moving!'


Cheetara was silent, her world was not empty anymore or simple, it was full and dangerous with enemies and potential death, more so then ever, she needed more then a break to get around this, the network of caves were limited but there had to be a way out. She crept slowly as she could hear footsteps, clearly not the taller one of the three she seemed too careful with her approach, the other two weren't as much. The same two that tried shooting her from the quad machines earlier, it was only a matter of time before they would enter, at first she had a glimpse of them earlier, and they were juvenile, not like their peer at all and were brazen but embraced technology in its entirety.

Her blood froze, she heard metal bouncing across the floor like a pebble bouncing onto water, except this juvenile was throwing metal but why do that

BOOM

Cheetara was on the floor, the impact knocked her down and she cowered as flames flared above her, with smoke, black and smothering left over, she tried not to cough and struggled to take in any air, instead just holding it in as she crawled. She had to be silent and patient, she peered over an edge to see one of the juvenile chuckling away and ready another, she raised an eye brow, in her time as a young juvenile throwing pebbles across water was a hobby, maybe breaking someone else's window as well, but that was because they deserved it, or at least she thought they did.

THIS though, was not a hobby, this was madness. Using her natural claws she added grip and clawed on some uneven pillared rocks, there was a gap that couldn't come soon enough leading into a different space altogether, pulling through it.

'DAKA!'

She had no idea what that meant but the voice was from the male youth that threw the grenade, it seen her through the smoke, prompting her to move and squeeze through the gap fast, she heard metal clipping the rock surface. Once. Twice-

She pushed herself through and jumped just as the third bounce was heard and another fiery blast was triggered, she didn't even have time to check how far things were below, and it was deeper then she imagined. Combination of acrobatic training and desperation made her leap and bounce off various rocky edges, skipping and tumbling and slipped before splashing deep into a black water. Though it were seconds, the time she last breathed and having to inhale smoke polluted air meant her gasp out of the water was a gasp for life.

'Now what?' She said openly hoping it would prompt her mind to prompt her with a solution, there was none, as she swam to the nearest rocked surface. Looking at it now, the fall was deeper then she had imagined everything was moist , moss on the top of visible rocks of beautiful carbonate, the surfaces themselves were coloured in a different spectrum of brown, yellow and even slime green. Picking herself out of the water she checked the bombs detonators she had on her bag, the three were intact still, she considered it but went against the idea of using it on such young children, however the tapping of her Bo on her hand still shown she was very much considering using other means instead.

'DAKA!'

Cheetara could had sworn she heard the young male rant again but it if that was in doubt then the distant boom far above wasn't and she could see and hear debris falling down on her, they were blowing up anything in their way to get to her! The first debris she saw was big and she moved, her speed kicked in, zipping round one debris after another, in daylight this would not be a problem but visibility was difficult even for a cat like herself, she dodged another, and jumped out of the way of several more hurtling down at the same time. Her landing feet didn't touch rock but water again as she yelped falling into the deep end again, quickly underwater she saw the rocks tumble in with her, trying hard not to panic she swam around frantically , her great speed no good in this water environment. She groaned and lost breath as one rock hit past her shoulder, she felt pain and bone strained on the impact and suddenly a wave of underwater pressure crashed into her, there was a dull thunderous thud that hurt her ears as she was tossed aside, still clinging onto her items and only just. When she had control she broke the skin of the water and into the air, breathing again, and swimming, she was lost in this place it seemed, there was a life line, the dropped grenades left small fires littered around the cave making her see that least there was another bay for her to climb onto of, she had to move quick.

'DAKA!'

'That little-!'

The first shot was a grateful miss, the second skimmed just past her as she pulled herself out, on ground she was moving now that she started her ignition and intended to speed on in a brutal fashion, she missed another shot and another, and she could see the little imp now but it changed it''s tactics on her, it fired at a small spiked pillar just in front of her, the debris spat out forcing her to break her current route, where she was hit, part of the energy projectile skimmed her left arm but it was enough to cause significant pain as she broke down and rolled, hiding by chance behind a large boulder.

'She wasn't safe however, the shots fired and drilled through just above her head, amidst all that she could hear a metal ping.

'DAK-'

'Enough of your Daka!' Stepping out of her shelter, she chanced it, spinning round and firing her Bo, it stretched across the entirety of the distance, hitting the youth straight on in the head and yelped falling back. If it weren't wearing goggles she might had been better able to read its shock better. She concluded the kid was out of the range of the grenade at least as she would be in a second, but before the grenade could touch the ground someone caught it by the foot, it was another like him, same height, same uniform and possibly the same ego as well, except he was a she. She grinned coldly.

'Daka' Flicking the grenade into the air, she delivered a swift roundhouse kick sending it to Cheetara, and already the lights on that device were screaming red, Cheetara ran, she covered a number of feet in seconds but the shockwave of the blast caught up and threw her off feet residing high and crashing again. She picked herself up slowly and growled, as she saw the two juveniles team up and load their weapons.

AGAIN?!

Their weapons seemed to be one handed pistols but with a semi automatic discharge, they rained down the concentration of the attack, moving left to right fast and faster, she could move but had no ideas, there had to be something! Each shot was getting closer and louder, green streaks of light occupied her sight, she had been adjusted to lizard fire, the random and separately timed shots but this was something else entirely, it was timed and focused and dashed through by the side, they caught her bag as one shot ripped it apart. It wasn't good, even worse as the bombs started flashing, the ones from her pocket, the ones Panthro made for and knowing him had a lot more punch then they appeared.

Fumbling in-between shot, she threw out one, and another that wasn't armed by complete mistake, but it seemed her attackers knew just about explosives as Panthro, or at least the female one did who struck the colleague to make him stop his joy-shooting and made him take notice of the flashing lights. They scampered as did Cheetara and this time she had cover as the light of the disc lit up altogether and there was an almighty boom, that overshadowed everything beforehand. Cheetara realised h=cover was perhaps not such a good idea.

'Should had known this was Panthro's work, crazy warmonger!' Her regret being there was no com on the signal so Panthro can hear that at her in response for calling her profession 'crazy'

She ran and leapt, stretching her Bo, to hit a small cat-sized rocky Island and vault herself to the other side of her jump. She turned to see the huge crater it left where it was, what was Panthro planning to do, rob a bank, as well as destroy Mumm-Ra's fuel tanks which were what they intended to be, well, she mused, good job she didn't follow the plan.

Some rocks were pushed off and she saw the two juveniles get up, looking to fight again, she growled and drew out her Bo but they were all preoccupied by the cracks appearing around the entire rocky surface, Panthro added a lot of punch to the bombs, perhaps too much as it looked the entire foundations of this cave was to collapse, she ran, ignoring those two and went through the crater looking for an upwards path out of here. The falling debris was shaky and thud here and there like the first drops of heavy hail, it would get worse soon, a lot worse, she had no time to make deep analysis, she had to get out, she heard a 'whoosh' sound and saw the two juveniles jet into the air, through the opening the made at the top to the way out, they were gifted with technology but they were gone but even if she got of here, she was under no illusion they would be waiting for her, so she set out to do the impossible, get out of here before they can. She ran, running fast upwards back from the crater she walked through and putting all her pace into it started running upto onto the wall, she felt her body sliding already but she kept running round, spiralling upwards and further back to the gap that she jumped from.

The two juveniles watched, their mouths gaped open as Cheetara overtook them, now she can afford to give a smug little look back at them, but the path wasn't so smooth and clear, debris started to intensify it's rainfall as she moved left right, sometimes more on the left the other but she never gave in and kept on pushing her pace all the time keeping her breathing in check and her cool regulated. Her excitement was under control she won't get careless, she heard shots from the back, they weren't giving up on her but it was too late as she finally reached a giant hole, the remnants of that tiny gap before and hurled herself in. No time to celebrate, she ran through with every intent to get away from them as possible.

CRRACK!

Something whacked her face out of nowhere, a fisted blow sent her spiralling down, she fell but controlled it and landed whilst rubbing the blood of her jaw. A dark shadow reappeared and took shape.

'Hello'

Her original tormentor had reappeared at last, Cheetara wasn't even going to be so courteous to reply, the Lunatak talked so much she didn't company or anyone to bolster her own pompous ego.

'DAKA DAKA DAKA!'

Great. The shouting was a giveaway as the young male of the juveniles came running from the top and looked down, his weapon trained but he became white when he saw his elder. The juvenile's equally young partner came and saw the Lunatak also, she snapped at her male counterpart. 'Idiot! Put the gun away! This is Brunnea's fight now!'

The two clearly had history with this Brunnea as they darted away to the outside, whilst here, the environment was beginning to tear even more under the collapse.

'Hey, Brunnea, we need to get out of here!'

'I disagree cat, the tomb is set, just your death now to complete it!' It was a evil boast of a bully and of a killer.

'My king conquered death, Brunnea.' Stated Cheetara with righteousness. 'And I will accomplish the same!'

The two sped into each other and clashed Bo's, Cheetara lashed out first striking violently, wanting to get this out of the way as fast as she can, in comparison Brunnea was cool and collective, countering with brilliance, parrying one blow with one turn and kicking Cheetara straight in the chest making her stumble and move to dodge more falling rocks, undeterred she ran back, keeping the intensity but stretching out her Bo to give her a greater range to strike from, Brunnea was on the defensive, evading and moving away from attack after attack till when Cheetara thought she had her simply teleported away to another point in the room.

'You don't get it do you, I can afford to be here' reminding Cheetara of her teleportation as her salvation to getting out alive, Cheetara tried to use the distance to run straight to the exit only Brunnea's teleportation anticipated her and buffered Cheetara's attempt.

'See' She mocked. 'Now how about we cut to the chase?' The rings of her eyes lit golden and Cheetara felt the same dark force trying to pry into her mind, no it felt more than that, it felt as if her soul was being...

'Agh! NO!' Her defiance was stronger and rushed in a punch that connected the Lunatak, making her skid with her feet across the ground, she made a low growl in response to Cheetara's defiance and came back at her, the two traded blows but Cheetara's newfound anger gave her much needed strength and determination, whilst her adversary was technically superior, she was finding it difficult to keep up with cheetara's persistent endurance, both fighters traded equal blows, the final one connected them both square one at each other, knocking them down to the ground, Cheetara would had fallen but a rock had fallen to the ground before she could landed it on instead. It wasn't lost on her that it was pure chance the rock fell down before she did, and briefly mused if all her nine chances were used up. Not all though as she felt her pocket...

Brunnea was slow to pick herself up but Cheetara wasn't running just yet, something she picked on.

'You are persistent, you did well for me to make me feel my hunger'

Your hunger for battle ends' Interestingly Cheetara didn't turn to Brunnea, still appearing to be leaning and seemingly looking tired.

'Yes...hunger for battle...' There was something not quite right about that statement, Cheetara was clearly sweating on her brow and hands, to Brunnea it was clear the cat was out of options and was expecting a sneak attack, why else would the cat have her back on her?

'Why do you not face me, a cleric must always face their fear!' The lunatak teleported to reappear right in front of Cheetara, expecting her holding a weapon aiming to hit her from behind, so teleported instead so as to see the look of the panic in the cat's eyes, but she saw nothing, instead Cheetara called her bluff and in her hand was a flat disc, the flashing lights caught Brunnea's eyes long enough for Cheetara to deliver a quick blow to the face knocking her to the ground semi-dazed. 'Here' Said Cheetara as she dropped the silver disc and positioned herself to run at full pace, and bolted to the exit knowing there were seconds to spare.

Or the time it took for Brunnea to pick herself up and gaze at the flashing display of the bomb.


Cheetara imagined the furious cry but she couldn't imagine the heavy boom and the thundering chase of blasts that followed, whisk!-whisk!-whisk! She cursed, unclericlally, covering the distance where she earlier came from, the fist distance was all flat out but then came the corners and the rorn walls and suddenly she found herself brake and restarting her pace, moving, pushing and jumping, along the way, she yelped as part of the wall just ruptured as she past it catching dust along the way and fearing she had spun round completely and gone the wrong way as she ran. Her hands were up guarding off any small chunks off rock that may strike her face as she ran through the maze, she can only hope her earlier start off was done in such speed that it gave her the distance because this was slowing her down.

There was a low groan of rock buckling and looked to see the ceiling sloping downwards, she cursed out the 'W' word once more and ran jumping over more obstacles and boulders but then there was a break, a short narrow path but long enough for her to build up speed and it was needed to because the entrance that was wide enough for her to slip in had caved in. She narrowed her eyes and tensed, no time to hesitate, not to question how much blocked the obstruction, now was for her to force her way out. Now.

All her power was put into this crucial run, the staff laid out like a battering ram, stretched out with the front spread out intended to batter the obstacle away but it came down to the strength of her speed as she ran like never before. Her journeys were over in a second but this felt longer, far longer but try as she did and closed her eyes and dared to believe, and broke out. Still air met fresh air and she loved it as she flung herself out of their but she could hear the cave in of rocks following in speed, even the ground she stood on now softened and so ran one last time, straight line with no restrictions and let loose.

'Cheetara!'

'Tygra!' She managed to pull of a smile of relief even after all this and as she continued to run from the fallout, it seemed attached to her, refusing to go till she went with it.

'Panthro is trying to get us going further down the caves'

'Not without me! Make him wait Tygra'

Then she was starting to win the race against the frail earth that was falling behind her, there was another platform, a separate base of rock that looked safe, she just had to jump from one cliff edge to the next. She put more into her speed it was a challenge accepted as in seconds she was over but not without a leap of determination to cover the distance, she didn't want to push herself but she was desperate to survive, putting everything she flew over the jump and got her clawded hands out to grab the edge of the cliff. She shouted in pain at landing in the face of rock but she held on and slowly pulled herself to the top, she was only a few feet from the top but after what she went through she was almost exhausted. Then with one last pull of her weight she got onto the top of the cliff.

'Tygra' She wheezed

'I always knew you could do it' She could hear his relief that she made it, it was still sinking that she did it.

'Thanks, is there time still?'

'Hey I'll make Panthro wait' Vowed Tygra before light heartingly adding 'I am the prince after all'

'Haha, alright I'll be down shortly, just need to catch a breath, and more!'

She made her way down the sloped top where the path down was far more user friendly, she wiped her brow, there was still much work to do in this heat but today was her eyes caught a bit of shade, that was the manifestation itself, suddenly it took form and Brunnea appeared clothing singed, eyes fuming, she had been suckered punched, victim of her own carelessness and nearly took the blunt of the blast but she was alive and if her eyes shown anything she wasn't going to put this to rest. Cheetara on the other hand was quite coy.

'What's the matter? Cat caught your tongue?

Brunnea, usually talkative just growled and grabbed the neck scarf that was covering her lower mouth, almost as if she was going to show something, she stopped, her eyes shown...fear as someone coughed out her attention.

'Now Brunnea, you had your turn long enough don't you think?'

'Who is that?' Cheetara was in shock to, she just heard a soft chuckle before a tall figure emerged, a same genus as Brunnea but the species was different, the one who walked into cheetara's line of sight was tall, physically powerful, skin dark grey with black spots, featuring several loose bangs sporting on her hairstyle, the eyes though were a deep yellow, a sickly colour befitting of a sickl personality, despite the apparent friendliness, the smile was false and pretentious, and her gear was that of war, but there was something else behind her back some kind of weapon in reserved perhaps. Understandably Cheetara was cautious.

'My apologies' Said the supposed leader, 'My team' From the corner of Cheetara's eyes she picked up the juveniles back in their crafts, they both hovered down at her corner, with the cliff at the back and two of their seniors at front she was trapped, she said nothing but hoped for an opportunity to present itself, .

Their leader prattled on 'They are loyal to the principals that my mother, the once Queen of my people had set out, so my apologise if these three were a little rough on you.' She then added, sneering 'Then again, did you really expect Hyaenidaes to greet murderers'

'Murderers? Your mother was one, if I choose to believe that'

'My Mother Spelaea was a woman of retribution, for the endless social injustices brought upon us, and of course genocide, by your kind nonetheless.'

'And who is the little princess I talk to then'

'I have no reason to tell you, it'll be a waste of words given you'll be no more soon. Instead you will be act on my behalf'

Cheetara scoffed, the Hyaenidae was full of herself but the leader ignored it. 'Your more important then you realise, but for now you are important to me and after that, Mumm-Ra.

The male juvenile scratched his head seemingly confused. 'Mumm-Ra dumped Pymura?' The leader gave a short stare and the kid fell quiet, fast.

'As I was saying, I know you have communication devices put into your ears by that bird folk whose city you saved, I also know your main contact is the adopted son of the accursed Claudus. There are two choices, cat. Either we kill you now, or you turn on that comm and put that listening speaker on full for your friend to hear.' With a point to Brunnea she added 'And don't pretend either, it was my associate here who informed me of your communication device and who you were talking to, you didn't think her glowing eyes were just to scare people? Brunnea extracts the knowledge of the mind, as well as other things. Only on the weak of course. So feeling ready to take an option?'

'How is option 2 different to the first one?'

'Because you do this and I'll give your first shot at freedom' She offered hand caseing as if she would be unarmed for Cheetara to try. 'it's really quite simple, all you have to is beat me. and your free'

'As simple as that? Sounds too good to be true'

'That's because it is'

Her fists clenched and knuckles cracked, the subtle display of violence was noticeable, she seemed to have more difficulty restraining her violence. 'Your call, cat, either way you die here today'

With reluctance Cheetara reached for the comm In her ear.

'Tygra, I need to speak to you'


Panthro was working frankly on starting up the Tank, there was a mechanical failing, which was to be expected as it was overdue maintenance but at this time? He was hoping his expectation for it could had been put on hold for a little while longer, his ear twitched, the comm vibrated it's attention, he pressed his ear to the piece and listened to the unexpected voice of Kat.

'Oh Hi Panthro!'

'Kat?! how did you get this? I gave it to Dobo!'

'Oh I 'acquired' it when he fell on my board, he's cool though there's some dog hair on this, gross! Hey!'

Panthro tapped his spanner as apparently Dobo wrestled the comm. 'And concentrate on flying you little-wait is this thing on?'

'It is and I don't really care what you call him, anything but King'

He was more serious now. 'Hearing you earlier you sounded in deep trouble, what's happening now?'

'We were attacked by something 'big' we managed to lose it though'

'How did you do that?'

'It met something bigger' He didn't go into details but Panthro took his word, last few years nothing has really surprised him. 'I need to tell something, it's important' Panthro nodded 'I understand' Dobo's tone was reserved, stressing that it wasn't for other ears, in other words to Panthro it sounded more like unsettling news, then just bad.

'Fair enough, get back here on the same path you came from, I'll try to meet you on the way, Mumm-Ra has Tanks lined up outside and I doubt their just on for show'

'Got it, see you there'

Panthro, felt the comm. Switch off and he pulled himself out from under the engine department, he was hoping to another test but he felt confident it would work fine. He leapt in and switched the ignition, it growled then whined away weakly, he looked at the console

'I did tell you to work, nicely'

He lifted his fist and 'softly' slammed it and suddenly the lights were flickering on the enginee was giving off a proper growl.

'Better' He mused, filled with self pride and accomplishment, before jumping out and running towards Tygra.

'Hey, Dobo and the kid are fine but we need to get going.'

'He saw Tygra looking out of the opening looking solemn. 'I said Now' He didn't move, he grabbed his own binoculars and zoomed in on what Tygra was seeing, it was Cheetara but she was surrounded by the ones who attacked her as well as someone else. He looked again at Tygra, he didn't make any contact but he had his fingers finely pressed to his ear piece. Reluctantly Panthro used the inferno device to connect to Tygra's and he just caught the end line of Cheetara.


'All right, speak, he can hear you' The leader wasn't convinced but a nod from Brunnea settled the doubt.

'You're too kind. Can you hear me adopted Prince, I know you're watching. I am Crocuta, Queen of the Hyaenidae, and daughter of Spelaea. You were only a child, as was I, and yet I won't forget your part in playing out in my mother's death. I am talking to you so you can know that the blood of Spelaea was not the only thing that survived' Cheetara wondered what she meant by that cryptic comment.

'There is a price to be paid, an ancient vendetta has returned to haunt your miserable kind, and I will execute it to the full.' Crocuta raised a finger at Cheetara raising a bloody vow. 'Starting with her! Watch her die! Just as you watched your mother!'

Cheetara snapped angrily 'You sick twisted creature!'

'Enough! Tygra will tell you' raising her voice for him to hear more clearly 'Won't you? Tell her Tygra, about how my mother brought fear to the night, tell her about the weapon you people thought was a myth, that is now very real once more!'

The item hidden behind Crocuta was revealed at last, a staff with a skull of a ram, curled horns, the handle of the staff was violet and dark matching the colour of her armour perfectly. Cheetara's sense couldn't make out what this thing was, she felt a history of evil on it, legacy of bearers who used it for insidious purposes, she only knew it radiated a sense of foreboding and destruction.

'Tygra' Cheetara felt afraid 'What is that?'

There was a pause but Tygra was speaking with equal fear, old memories haunted him again.

'Run Cheetara, don't challenge it! Please just don't'

She can hear the guns of the hovercrafts clicking into action.

'Well' Asked Crocuta 'Are you going to take your free turn or not?'

Brunnea vanished away to a further setting, seeing how Crocuta looked, she could tell what was to happen, Cheetara pulled the staff back and positioned it horizontally by her side, building her speed force from within, she had no idea what this staff could do, he could hear Tygra begging her to run somehow, but she knew she was cornered, there was no way out, but she had to try, she refused to die as an example and was going to push her already tired body through pain once more.

'I'm sorry Tygra. I-'

She couldn't say it, she didn't want to bring anymore pain of knowing she truly loved him, that she wanted to be with him forever, but in her mind she knew if she wanted that destiny then she must face all those in way of her, she must fight, regardless of choice.

She ran, everything went into motion, the gravity of her reality was a heavy burden but it did not slow her down, instead she accelerated like never before, she saw Crocuta smirking with teeth showing and the staff held in front showing nothing, it was possible the reaction of underestimating her was yet to dawn on the Hyena and in a heartbeat Cheetara was upon striking distance, screaming out in a defiant roar. If she was the last cleric then let all who faced her know that she was the best! The staff swung at full might, her pace set to rip through Crocuta when the staff, Crocuta's flickered into life. Cheetara barely saw it, but immediately felt the force of power pressed against her, an energy of yellow burning power.

She tried, tried with all her might and faith, to push through it, her speed though drastically lost it's power but she had to try, for the cats, to see Tygra just one more shad had to try, it burned her limbs and the air she breathed, and faltered back.

Then everything was lost.

Her footing was lost completely and with a hurricane force of power, the yellow dome of energy that engulfed her flung her out far into the air, countless meters high and screamed, her body spun without control and crashed down into rocks, tumbling and turning, nothing but pain existed even when her body stopped rolling across the dirt, she couldn't move. She could feel her body broken more then her spirit, too weak to cry out in pain, her spirit was dying as she gazed up into that cloudless sky, lying on scorched earth, her hearing was lost, couldn't even feel the comm. In her ear, it was over. And yet she pleaded one last time.

'..Jaga, please. Help me.' She saw something in the sky, was it really him? Jaga? She fooled herself into thinking, only to see from blurred eyes jumping down from impossible height was the sadistic daughter of the Tyrant who had chased her down just to make an example of her, that it was all over for her, and that it had only begun for Tygra.


Panthro was horrified about the power, the staff with the Ram's skull was terrifying, now it became clear about the extent of the ambush, there was no mistaking Crocuta was indeed the daughter of Spelea not just in the power she wielded but the strength as she ran and jumped after the far flung Cheetara. In his mind Cheetara was already dead the moment she was caught by the staff, but it only opened up the old wound of regret, her majesty, the King and other good soldiers had to face that power in the ambush without him, and was he in that time? In a dog cell!

He didn't care about the origin of that staff, all he knew now is that it's clear why Mumm-Ra hired those thugs, they have the weapon that can challenge the Sword of Omens. He heard Crocuta's conversation, the psychotic vow, the staff that produced so much havoc, added with her vendetta meant she and the others of these Lunataks were picked specifically to murder his king.

And the worse part; that the young king is in the dark over this.

'CHEETARA MOVE! YOU HAVE TO MOVE!' Begged Tygra.

Panthro barely switched on, when he could see, even by his own eyes where Crocuta was going to land on, Cheetara wasn't moving, and Tygra was going hysterical, he grabbed the young prince and turned him away from what was about to be seen, and wrestled Tygra to the ground. It was already over, he knew Crocuta had brutally finished off Cheetara but Tygra was insistent. 'Let me go, she still's alive! SHE'S ALIVE!'

'She's gone your highness, it's over!'

'No I won't! Losing her was horrible enough' His thoughts switching to the darkest day of losing his mother, his mind were now comparing present trauma with past trauma, Tygra was breaking up. 'I won't lose Cheetara I just won't!'

Panthro struck Tygra across the face, rendering him unconscious he hated to do that but he needed control of the situation, he looked out realising he forgot about the Tanks Mumm-Ra had sent, dam traitors he swore. 'Have you forgotten who your serving!' It was meaningless shout, the Tanks were no way near advancing close enough to hear him but they were closing, his eyes widened as he saw one missile screech out from the line and struck part of the larger cave, he knew he had to go now and carried Tygra with one arm over his shoulder straight away, running straight down to the Tank, tossing Tygra in the back and starting the accelerator.

'Hello little Prince' Panthro heard the voice of Crocuta who must have gotten hold of Cheetara's ear piece, he had yet to turn his own off and was still tuned to Tygra's. He took it out and on his metal fingers answered back.

'You wanted the prince, instead you just got the big cat of the group'

'And who do I speak to' The voice was undaunted by Panthro's cold words.

'The name's Panthro, and when we meet, I will have your head!' He crushed his own comm, qnd drove to find Dobo and Kat, evade the Tanks, save Lion-O and make Mumm-Ra pay.

No rest for the warrior. In heart he preferred it that way.


Crocuta looked down at her prize, the Havoc staff, was indeed powerful, just as they told her mother long ago, it was true to its power as it appeared in the visions they shown at the time. She held the staff over her shoulder and strolled about swinging her staff about as if bored already.

Then she saw the two brats land down with their crafts, Arad and Hyaena, they both took their goggles off and stared at the fallen Cheetara. Crocuta coughed and looked at them, especially Hyaena 'When I speak, you shut it. You got that?'

Hyaena gulped. 'Sure no worries. I mean, my apologies'

'I swear if it weren't for you two being fluent with technology...' It was muttered under her breath, if they didn't hear her then that was fine, if they did what were they going to do about it?

'Excuse me, your majesty, but are we leaving that here?' Referring to the deceased Cheetara

'I said Mumm-Ra wanted her, now take her along, tow her if needs be!'

Brunnea her advisor waiting ahead of her, far from the other two, so they could resume a private conversation.

'You got carried away with the cat there' Brunnea pointed out but Crocuta was quick to point out the contrary.

'And you're so different? you're lucky I intervened when you were starting to feel 'peckish''

Brunnea lowered her head 'I'm sorry'

'Oh don't be, you'll get your chance soon enough, now about that Cheetara'

'Her soul would eventually travel to the desired location soon enough but I will be ready'

'Good, because I intend to bring Mumm-Ra both a cat, and knowledge, and in return' Already she imagined the grieving spirits of Claudus and his wife in mourning over the slain Lion-O, it was more then a reward, it was a dream that she wanted it to become real, very real. It made her chuckle and then laugh, a type that became madness of its own accord, just like her mother and the bearer from the days of old.

A trait shared by the Bears of Havoc.


By far the most challenging chapter I have ever written, I don't want to be giving away spoilers but the fate of a certain cat is not as straight forward as some may be led to believe given how I written this up (I say this to avoid any negative backlash) which I don't think there will be but this has been a very draining experience writing this chapter.