Calico Briggs, or Callie as some would call her, was undoubtedly the most important kat in Megakat city. She was also was one of the most beautiful single she-kats, a fact that did not go unnoticed by many of the toms that met her. While it was nice being sought after she was way too busy to pay any mind. Somebody had to see that the city function while the mayor worked on his golf game. But as of late there was one tom that was being more persistent in his advancements. The weekly fresh flowers on her desk was a testament to that.
Callie was still unsure if he was someone she can trusted, even if the mayor had signed a major contract with him six months ago. Sure, he was handsome and very regale for a lion, but there was something about him that made her feel uneasy. She was, however, a professional, so whatever mixed feeling she had for him she set aside as she looked right at him from behind her desk.
"So what can I help you with Mr. Purstein? I hope that Megakat Towers are meeting your needs and that the city labs are cooperating well."
Though the contract was in place there had been some tension among the scientists and workers over funding and projects. She really couldn't blame the kats at Megakat Bio-labs or Pumadyne, but for once the Mayor had made a good decision for the city. The enforces were finally updated with the equipment they had needed for a long time. Megakat Towers were finally leased bringing in some funds to pay back the debt to build them in the first place. Not forgetting to mention the slew of new jobs that opened up, thanks to the new hospital and construction of the new company building. Yes, Mr. Purstein was a hailed celebrity everywhere he went for saving the city economically. He was almost more popular than the Swat Kats. Almost.
"Yes, all is well. Thank you Ms. Briggs, but I'm not here to ask something of you. On the contrary I was wondering if there was anything I could do for you?" The big tom said smoothly as his light brown eyes gazed at her. The dark green suit brought out the shades of brown on him, from his light eyes to his dark mane which was tied back tastefully. Callie cleared her throat nervously as she tried to look away from his piercing gaze.
"What exactly do you mean. As long as your company continues to aid the city, there is not much I could ask of you." The gentle she-kat replied.
"Oh, but there is. Ms. Briggs, Callie, I am not a stupid tom. I know very well whose hand this city rests in, anyone who thinks Manx is in charge is a fool. He is a well-meaning kat, a politician. You on the on the other hand are a true leader and a visionary. Someone that I can really respect, Manx may be mayor now but it won't be long before you are in that chair."
Callie was silent a bit too long after the Head of Roarco Corps had finish talking. She literally had to shake her head to make sure that she heard right. She hated to do that in front of him, especially when she heard the warm chuckle coming from the handsome lion.
"I seem to have surprised you Callie."
"Yes, well as much as I appreciate your support I can assure you that I have no plans in becoming Mayor anytime soon. And I might add that Mayor Manx was smart enough to close a deal with you and your company, Mr. Purstien." The deputy mayor leaned in with her hands folded on top of her desk. No amount of flattery or ego stroking was going to work on her. He may have been more bold than any of the toms that had tried, but she will not be won over that easily.
Augustus smiled as he leaned in close to her desk, "Loyal too, have you no fault?"
Callie shrugged, "I've been told that I'm a terrible singer."
The lion laughed a laugh that sent chills down Callie's back. When he stopped his eyes gleamed at her with a want that made the fair deputy mayor's stomach do flips. She had seen that look in a tom's eyes many times before but never had she seen one so intense, so dangerous.
"You are undoubtedly that most amusing she-kat I have ever met. Just know that if you ever need anything from me, you can always ask."
"Well I thank you Mr. Purstein."
"Auggie." The proud lion corrected.
"Auggie," Callie said with a forced smile, "but I can assure you that there is nothing at this moment that you could do for me."
"What about dinner, say tonight at six 'clock?" Augustus asked as he placed his hand over hers. Callie fought very hard not to jerk it away. For the first time she was grateful that she had a speech to write for the new wing opening at MegaKat Medical Hospital.
"Sorry Augustus, I have too much on my hands now. Perhaps another time."
The large Kat sighed as he nodded his head and stood up from his seat. He raised the she-kat's soft hand to his lips. His light brown in contact with her cool green eyes. "Till next time then. Good day Ms. Callie."
As the door to her office shut tight Callie let out a breath that she didn't even know she was holding. He was the charmer, any she-kat would have leapt at the chance to spend an evening with him. She shook her head as she reminded herself that she didn't have time to think of silly things. She had a speech to write, among other things.
Outside of her office Augustus straightens out his tie, then moves to another pair of doors to the mayor's office. It seemed to him that the deputy mayor was always too busy, something would have to be done about that.
Later that day
High above the city that famous jet zoomed across the darkening sky. Many of the bystanders below whistled and whooped as the Turbokat flew over their heads. Even if they didn't need the two vigilantes many of the citizens felt that as long as the Swat kats were around maybe the mega evil that plagues their city would continue to stay away. True, the enforcers seemed to be doing their jobs better than ever, but the extra protection didn't hurt.
Razor checked his scanners again and again as they flew over different areas of the city. While Chance did agree to go on his date he insisted that they patrolled today to keep up their appearance. Plus it didn't hurt to make sure everything on the Turbokat was operational.
"Seems pretty quiet, Sure-Shot." T-bone commented as he turned the jet to fly over another part of the city.
"Yeah, I am picking up some activity but it's nothing the enforcers can't handle." T-bone nodded and was about to suggest that they call it an early night when an alarm went off.
"What is it? Trouble?"
"Don't get your tail in a knot, I'm just picking up an energy signal." Razor explained as he checked his computer. "Weird, the signal seems similar the Pastmaster's time portal . But it's coming from some canyons at Megakat desert. Nowhere near anything special."
"The Pastmaster? We haven't seen him since the giant mummy incident." T-bone thought out loud. Even though it had been a while since they last saw action he had hope that the time sorcerer was gone for good. Getting thrown into another time/dimension was never fun, but he was more than happy to put the little creep in place if he need to.
"He must have survived that fallen pyramid. It's a little strange that he wouldn't just show up here and start trying to take over the city. As far I know there's nothing historically significant in those canyons."
"Maybe he's setting up shop to attack later."
"Maybe. Let's go check it out, better to be safe than sorry."
T-bone nodded and changed direction.
"Affirmative. Heading towards location now."
In a camouflage tent, the old sliver kat sat in a chair with a blanket wrapped around him. He stared at the photo in his hand as he continued to pray, not sure of how much time he had left. Then his prayer was answered as he heard the faint sound of a jet nearing his location. The pendant nearly dropped from his hand but was caught in time and stored it away in his lab pocket. He ran outside the tent with binoculars in hand and looked to see if it was really them, the kats he had waited for.
When he saw it was the famous jet flying his way he turned to his machine and began to quickly start it up. He felt sorry for having to do this to them but he had no one else to turn to. He could only hope that by some miracle they will be able to complete the mission he was sending them on. For months he had study the Swat Kats whenever they showed themselves and how they seem to have a knack for helping out where help was not asked. As the jet came into position he prayed one last time and fired. A ball of electricity shot out hitting the jet. He could see the waves of power ripple for a second on the Turbokat. There was a bright flash. It all took place in seconds and before his eyes the Swat Kats were gone. The storm in the sky settled and the old kat stepped aside from his invention.
"Good luck Swat Kats. Bring her back safe."
It happen so fast that Razor wasn't even sure it happen. They were flying to where his computers were saying the signal was. He was ready to tell T-bone that it was just probably the storm above the canyons when the Turbokat was hit. By what, he was not too sure, there was a large flash, then, nothing.
T-bone felt the jet being hit and saw the flash too, when it was gone he had to pull up before they crashed into an oncoming cliff. "What the hell was that Razor?"
"I'm not sure, but whatever it was I don't think it was the Pastmaster." Doing a quick check on all his systems the slim kat was relieved to find nothing damaged.
"What about that signal? Are you still picking it up?"
"It's gone and I'm not getting any readings out here. Even that weird storm is gone." Both Razor and T-bone had the same sickening feeling but neither wanted to acknowledge it. Without being asked, T-bone swung the jet around and flew over where he thought they got hit. Razor scanned the area but turned up with nothing. Whatever had made the signal was gone.
"Let's head home Razor. I want to take a look at the Turbokat. If something did hit us it must have left a mark."
"Unless it was lighting, like that last time."
T-bone shuddered at the memory of being accidentally sent to another dimension where the Swat Kats were the bad guys. "Are you thinking that it happened again, are we in another time, again?"
"Well," Razor said as he took a deep breath, "we'll find that answer soon enough. Let's just head back and cross that bridge if we get there."
As they left the area Razor swore he saw something below the cliffs, but pushed the thought away as the ship's systems repeated that there was nothing in the canyon. As they got closer to civilization Razor tried to listen in on the enforcer channel to make sure nothing serious was going on. To his dismay nothing was heard, not even the light chit-chat. He knew he was not on the wrong feed but he switched to the others just to make sure. There was nothing, just static.
"We must have been hit harder than we thought. I'll not getting anyone on the radio." Razor said out loud as he rechecked his computers. "I'm not even getting any kind of signal. It's like there is no one out there."
"We're almost to the hanger, we'll take a look and head out to the city for one more check." T-bone said as he noticed that there was no movement or traffic bellow them.
When they neared the salvage yard T-bone pressed the button on his control panel to open the subterranean hanger in the ground. He frowned as they came closer and pressed it again. Nothing happened, once more he pushed it hard, willing the thing to work. Razor never felt so ready to be back at the garage. It worried him that Turbokat's systems seem fine but he couldn't get a reading on anything. As he planned out on how to look for the problem he was suddenly pushed back into his seat as T-bone pulled-up sharply.
"Hey, what's the idea buddy?"
"Razor, we got a big problem."
Callie never felt so furious in her life. Not just furious but insulted. Before the Mayor had left for the day he came into her office and told her that she needed an assistant. For four years she had never needed one nor had the budget to hire any help. When she had asked why the Mayor decided that now would be a good time, his answer was that time was being wasted on unimportant matters. That she needed to concentrate more on being socially available. Her fur stood on ends as she repeated to herself that this was a bad joke. There was no way that the Manx would be willing to spend money to get her an assistant. Someone put him up to this, a certain lion. When she asked the Mayor he quickly wanted to change the subject to his upcoming speech.
Callie knew there was a reason she didn't like that over-confident tom, and the Mayor had not sold her out this time. He was whoring her out to please the bastard. That's how she saw it. However, the extra help would mean that she could get home at a descent hour. She could get a lot done and on time without hassle. Fine, she will hire an assistant but she'll be damned if Augustus thought that she would go out with him. She yawned as she looked down at the paper she was writing on before she began squeezing her stress ball. Sighing she placed the silly toy back in her desk.
When Callie first worked for the Mayor as an intern fresh out of law school, the Mayor's office was handing out these little stress balls with the Mayor's face printed on one side and the word 'vote' on the other. Callie was given one and ever since that day she secretly kept it in her desk. The word 'vote' has been worn away but the smiling face of Mayor Manx remains. It was really useful for times like now when she would like nothing better than to yell at the old-timer.
The Mayor was not all that bad. He did have his moments, however rare they seem, where he was on top of things and had the best interest of the city in mind. His partners dealings had also managed to bring some money and jobs into the city. The deputy mayor was at a loss for words when he had told her that he was working on a contract for Roarco Corps. It was the first time since she could remember that he did any of the paper work and without errors. She was skeptical at first but after visiting the impressive work site she had to admit that Roarco Corps had a lot to offer Megakat city.
She picked up her pen, not wanting to look at the time and started working. "Fine I'll get an assistant if it means I'll never have to write another boring speech again." She said to herself as the night wore on.
T-bone did not like this plan one bit, but it was the only one they had. Razor had gone down to see what was the problem with the hanger opening. According to Razor three things could have happened. One, the door was jammed. Two, someone found out who they where, jammed it, and are now waiting for them. When T-bone asked what was situation three Razor shook his head saying he didn't want to jinx it. So here he was hovering around the junk yard, waiting for Razor to come back with an answer. He just hoped he'd be quick about it before someone comes and starts to wonder what the Turbokat was doing floating above the salvage yard.
The smaller Swat Kat slipped inside the dark garage through the back door. The air inside was stuffy and filled with dust, even without much light he could see that the place was a mess. The floor was covered with debris, furniture was over turn and windows boarded up. He raised his gloveatrix and pressed a button to make a small light appear. Slowly he made his way through the eerie mess. The hanger was not here. That much he knew. It was just the mess that gave it away, everything in the garage was different. The room he was in was where the entrances should be but it was missing. The alarm used to alert them when Callie was calling was gone too, along with the security system that he work months on to setup. Making his way to the front office he decided that he had enough of the creepiness he stopped to click a button on his helmet to give his partner the bad news.
"Come in T-bone, can you hear me?"
"Loud and clear. So what's the hold up?"
"We are not at our hanger, I don't whose place this is but it's not ours. In fact it looks like no one has been here for years."
Razor waited a moment as T-bone used a line of colorful expressions. He turned to leave when a calendar on the wall caught his attention. He got a little closer to see the date, why, he had no idea. He just had to see. Not noticing the movement behind him, he blew away some of the dust, then shined the light on the date, his eyes widening.
A loud crack ripped through the air causing him to turn and flash his light on whatever made the noise. His honey colored eyes blinked twice as his mind tried to tell him what he was looking at. The large thin creature had many old wounds that he swore went all the way to its bones. It's dark brown fur matted and messy in what he could only guess was dried blood. It's black eye's stared at the intruder then let out a terrifying roar. Razor fired his cement slugs pining the thing to the wall on the other side of the room. Moving to the exit, Razor's eyes stayed on the struggling beast, his ears moving to pick up any signs of more. His left ear stopped as it picked up heavy breathing. Before he could point his weapon on the smaller creature it rushed at him knocking him off-balance.
The Razor hands griped the thick neck on the creature, trying to keep its foul smelling mouth from ripping his throat out. Frustrated, it reared back. Lifting its clawed hand to swipe at its prey. Seeing his chance, Razor kicked his legs out, pushing the beast away. It landed not too far from him, crashing some chairs. Wasting no time he fired his Octopus Missile as the crazed thing leapt at him from the heap. Thinking it was over, he turned once more to the exit when the larger beast broke away from the cement. So sure that it was headed for him Razor prepared to fire. To his surprise the thing attacked to smaller trapped beast, killing it with one strong punch to its jaw, snapping the neck.
When the deed was done it turned to attack once more, but got sent flying back with an Octopus Missile, trapping it. It let out a series of shrieks and roars as it struggled to get free. Getting a hold on his breathing the rational kat fought his mind to let him see what it would not. Like pieces of a puzzle, he could see bit by bit how distorted their body's really were.
How their fur and skin seemed to hang ragged from their bony body. Their black eyes held no real emotions even as one of them fought to get free. He noticed the one hanging lifelessly on the wall was missing both its ears and as he looked closer he could see that part of its skull was exposed. When he had enough he let his mind take over to hide whatever else he didn't yet see. Walking back to the exit he called to T-bone to pick him up and get him out of whatever nightmare he was in.
A nightmare. It had to be a nightmare.
After being picked up they flew towards MegaKat City to see what else had changed. On the way Razor explained how the place was boarded up from the inside and about the creatures he encountered. Before he could finish telling T-bone about the date on the calendar both Swat Kats gasped at the state of their beloved city. Ruins, the proud tall building that once stood were nothing but crumbling pillars of rusted metal.
What was worse, Razor couldn't find any signs of life on radar or ex-ray. He sent out messages over radio for any kat in the area to respond, but nothing came back. Large vines had crawled their way up most of the buildings. The street below had large crevasses, overturned cars with weeds growing out of them. Not just cars, tanks and enforce jets were scattered throughout the city. The City Hall was gone, plain gone. Neither kat said a word as they flew over the sad city. Only when he saw city hall did T-bone say anything.
"What alternate hell did we get sucked into this time?"
"Not sure" Razor explained as he took one last look at the fallen building, "For once it looks like we are too late to help anyone ."
"But what do you think happened?"
"The end of the world."
T-bone laughed nervously at the idea and hoped Razor was joking. When the "Ha-ha, I just kidding" didn't come T-bone gripped the steering column tight as anger rose inside him. This was exactly why he hated time travel, it caused him to see things that he should never have seen and raise the constant fear that he would be stuck somewhere he did not belong. What was even worse; there was nothing he could do to fix or save what was already lost.
"Okay, fine it's the end of the world. But there's got to be someone around to help explain this mess."
He could sense his partner shaking his head and let out a defeated sigh. "I'm not picking up anything or anyone. Unless they're deep underground everyone is gone."
"Do you think it was Dark Kat?"
Razor shook his head, but remembered that T-bone couldn't see him and spoke up."No way. Dark Kat wanted to create a criminal utopia, talk about an oxymoron."
"So I guess that means Dr. Viper, the Metallikats and the Pastmaster are all out of the question too. They each had their ideas on what to do with this city." The pilot mused out loud.
"Right, whatever caused this is something we have yet to meet. Heck, we might not ever meet since this place could be different from our own in ways we can't image."
T-bone nodded as he looked down on a neighborhood that looked exactly like the one he had grown up in his time. To see it in such disarray made it hard even though this world was different from his own. Feeling even more frustrated and useless the large tom felt a strong need to land the jet before he did something crazy.
"I still want to check out the Turbokat. Enforcer headquarters is not too far. I'll stop there."
Razor nodded, than thought of something. "T-bone, do you remember the enforcer building from before they updated?"
It took a minute to think about it then the yellow tom nodded his head saying, "Yeah, it was just a big police building with four helicopter pads. They re-built it so their air support didn't have to come all the way from outside the city. Why?"
The answer came as the old enforcer building came into view. The long familiar tarmac and air tower were not even there. It was exactly the way T-bone had just described how the old enforcer building once looked six years ago.
"How?" the big tom cried.
"I saw a date back at the garage. That building is there because whatever happened to this world must have happen six years ago."
Growling T-bone pressed the boosters and zoomed pass the old building. Enough was enough, he wanted answers and he wanted them ten minutes ago. Why were they sent to this living hell? What had caused the world to end well before its time? And where were the Swat Kats in all of this? That last question was easy to answer. Six years ago there were no Swat Kats. Chance and Jake would be fresh out of the academy, about to go to intense training to become part of the technical force unit. The events leading to them becoming vigilantes never happened. If they even existed in this time.
"Where are you taking us?" Razor asked worried as they head out of the destroyed metropolis.
"Back." T-bone growled "Back to where we started. That crazy signal got us here and I doubt it was by accident. Something out there wanted us here to see this. I want to know why."
The weapon's operator opened and closed his mouth. He had a point, and he could have sworn that he saw something down there in those canyons. Really there was no harm in looking one last time. Pumadyne would be the closest area to refuel so it really was the best thing they could do at the moment. "Alright, let's go then."
T-bone nodded than jolted up in his seat. "Aw, man, I think I just found all our survivors."
Razor looked down to see what T-bone meant and instantly regretted it. On the outskirts of the city thousands of decaying bodies layered the ground. Among the dead a few of the crazed beasts were moving about, fighting with each other.
"Are they zombie kats?" T-bone asked hesitantly.
Mutant lizard kats he could deal with. Aliens? Sure. Robotic gangster kats, bring'em on. Reanimated dead kats that feast on your flesh and if you get bit you become one? Rain check please. Right under monster bugs, the supernatural freaked out the big tom to no end. It didn't help that his roommate was such a horror movie buff making the genre impossible to avoid. The burly tom swore that Jake only watched the stuff as revenge for all the Scaredy Kat Toons he was forced to watch. Every tough guy has their limits, his was walking dead kats and bugs.
"I don't know." then Razor thought about how the creature he met killed one of its own but did not eat its flesh. Maybe it wasn't fresh? Or maybe it just had one drive left, but then how could it live for six years without any substance? "I don't think so, but let's not get bitten or scratched just in case."
T-bone laughed nervously again as the jet passed by quickly. Razor watched as one of the things won a fight against a much bigger creature, but it also did not feast on its flesh. Instead it moved on, wondering aimlessly.
"Weird." He said lowly to himself as the mass collection of bodies ended as they moved further from MegaKat City limits. The sun had set but even the darkness of the night could not hide the remains of Armageddon.
Then the miracle they were hoping for happened. Razor was receiving a distress signal. After six years someone may still be alive.