The Flag Day Fight for Freedom

Wildcat City, Kansas, USA, multiple reasons to celebrate every June 14th. Not only was it Flag Day, it was Tom the Patriotic Tiger's birthday (Leo the Patriotic Lion's fell on July 4th, which was even better for him). To the public, they mostly concentrated on the parades and events associated with Flag Day, since they usually left Leo and Tom alone anyway. Those who ran into Tom still wished him a happy birthday, however, which he appreciated.

The Biker Mice and their comrades also pulled out their flags and waved them as they rode down the streets, showing their appreciation for the Stars and Stripes. Stoker, in his superhero form, flew high above in the sky, also displaying the flag. Rimfire, having used his flag as a weapon against various goons and Clawtroopers, seemed to be showing the most devotion during this time. The crowds showed their appreciation to both the parade of mice and the parade featuring the numerous bands and military units that always participated on such holidays, of which Leo collectively referred to them as the "Pride of Wildcat City."

To Limburger, it was a nightmare; since he wanted to destroy the Earth, he couldn't stand seeing the flag flown everywhere. "It only adds to my misery," he said to himself. "This puny, pathetic planet has been nothing but one series of unfortunate setbacks after another. If there is any consolation whatsoever, it is the fact I no longer have to deal with the High Chairman and his severe overreactions to my failures. I cannot even recall why he was sentenced to death in the electric chair in the first place. Could that loudmouth lion have something to do with it? Hmmm." He pondered this while studying up another scheme.

The truth of the matter was that Leo had nothing to do with Lord Camembert's death; instead, he was wanted as the top intergalactic criminal in the galaxy, and celestial police forces finally apprehended him as he was returning home from Earth after his initial banishment of Limburger. This was not going to be good news for Limburger, but it turned out he would never find out about it.

To honor a tradition of his on his birthday, Tom was wearing his blue drum major's uniform while his father, a drummer of the U.S. Army Hellcats, was wearing his uniform as well. (Leo's uniform was green.) Tom and his father spoke with Leo and the Mice at the garage after they finished their impromptu tour of the city showing their flags. Neither Tom nor his father had their drums with them, just their uniforms.

Vinnie continued to wave his for a time while the two groups got acquainted, and took fascination at how the Hellcats, although the last actual functioning field music group within the U.S. Army, were (and still are) also the longest lasting, dating all the way back to the American War for Independence. "Truly they are a piece of living history," Leo made the comment.

"How long have you been a Hellcat?" Throttle asked.

"At least 30 years now," Tom's father replied, "and I'm showing no signs of slowing down now. I do believe this is the first time I've met you in person, although if I ever saw you, it was by accident." His last remark was directed towards Stoker.

"I do travel around quite a bit as Nightshift and as Super Stoker," Stoker replied, nodding his head.

"I remember seeing you in black, without the mask."

"Then you saw me as Nightshift. Originally it helped to protect me from sunlight when that turned me into a rat, but no more; using green and yellow tetrahydrocarbons switched that for the better, hence my supercostume."

"Aren't you playing the drums, too?"

"Yes, but rock drums. It's not my image to play the type you play, but still, 30 years and counting. My hat's off to you!"

"Oh, thank you."

"Leo's birthday is on the Fourth of July," Modo said to Tom. "How do you feel about that, Tom?"

"I feel great," Tom replied. "He deserves it, seeing as how he is who he is. Flag Day is the next best thing, though. Most of what I've hoped, however, is that I never am captured; I mean, I've heard how Princess Peach, on her birthday, was kidnapped by Bowser; doesn't he ever quit?"

"When will he learn?" Modo agreed. "Don't worry; Mario always arrives in time to save her. As for you, we're not letting old stink fish kidnap you again!" (Tom had previously been held by Limburger for ransom as bait to trap Leo, which would eventually finish off the Biker Mice. But to no avail; the Mice rode off victorious.)

"Why do you bring it up?" Modo continued.

"On the way over, I overheard somebody say something about Limburger plotting to take somebody hostage. He was one of those mentally ill people always panicking over nothing, however."

"Well, this time, he might be making an exception," Leo replied, looking at his radar. "I'm picking up signals from our rural neighbor of Cat's Granby. We're in Battlefield Range, you understand."

"I thought we were in Wildcat City," Charley replied, very confused.

"We are, Charlene," Leo nodded. "It's the same concept as saying Manhattan, Queens, Harlem, and the Bronx are all part of New York City. The other subdivisions of Wildcat City include Dingoville, Foxboro, Clawtooth Haven, and Grizzlyburg, where our largest grizzly bear population lives, and, incidentally, was and is also the home of my arch-nemesis, Sully Sullivan. Watch out for him, however; he's extremely dangerous."

"We will, Leo," Throttle promised. "Should we investigate this, in the meantime?"

"Go ahead. You know how to handle Limburger. Tom and I don't, although we have helped to apprehend him."

"Then it's time to ROCK…" Throttle replied, beginning the famous battle cry.

"…and RIDE!" everyone finished, racing to their bikes, gunning the engines, and blasting off towards the scene of the crime (although waiting to the garage doors to open first). Carbine and Rimfire stayed behind with Leo, Tom, his father, and Charley while Stoker flew alongside the Biker Mice.

When our heroes reached the scene of the crime, it became evident the alarmist that was panicking over Limburger taking somebody hostage was partially false, because the one trapped in the trap turned out to be Grease Pit. "I always get the stupid jobs!" he complained. "Stay here and don't move! Get the mice! Shut up! What kind of career is this?"

Limburger paid no attention to Grease Pit and focused his missiles on the Biker Mice, who returned fire with their own weapons (Throttle and Vinnie using their guns, and Modo using his bionic arm). Stoker flexed his muscles before charging into the fray.

Since Vinnie still had his flag with him, he showed no signs of fear of controversy over showing it, as Leo had previously dealt with criminals who claimed to do crime "in the name of Old Glory," which caused his patriotic blood to boil hotter than ever before. One crook turned out to be a double agent who was pretending to serve Russia, however, so Leo let him off the hook.

Tom, meanwhile, was humming Sousa's marches to himself as he watched the action from one of Rimfire's communication devices that was linked to Modo (since Modo was Rimfire's uncle) in case of emergency. He also took note of the plot, as it was a simple "lure into the trap" type of plot from Limburger.

"You wretched rodents!" Limburger screamed as Vinnie's flares from his crossbelt set fire to his makeshift hideout. "Stop displaying those colors!"

"Flag hater! That's what you are!" Vinnie replied, growing angry. "I'll show you." He leaped from his bike and spun in circles while firing blue lasers from his battle gloves, a trick he used in the junkyard to take out enemy guns during the case where Rump masqueraded as the police officer and (later) the courtroom judge to smash their bikes for eternity. In this case, the blue laser fire took out some of the vehicles Limburger's goons were driving. He laughed his signature laugh of triumph as he landed on his bike, although standing up in a surfer's position. He raised his arms in triumph as well. Then he sat back down on his bike seat and guided himself back to where Modo was driving.

"Now you listen up, stink breath!" said Throttle sternly as he grabbed Limburger by the neck. "Nobody but nobody disses the red, white, and blue of this nation's flag! You're just lucky Leo the Patriotic Lion wasn't here to see this!"

Hearing this over Rimfire's communication device back at the Last Chance Garage, Leo made the comment, "In a sense, I did see it. I would indeed have sternly reprimanded him, and Throttle basically summarized what I would have said in 20 minutes, tops."

"Oh, I hate that name!" Limburger winced. "Possibly the only thing more bothersome that you repulsive rodents is that ludicrous loudmouth."

"He means Leo," Tom said to his dad at the garage. "Now you've witnessed what the mice go through in a typical day in the life."

"I see," said Tom's father. "The Hellcats and I offer them our congratulations. Leo, I hear you wrote a drum-and-fife piece in Rimfire's honor once."

"I did indeed," Leo confirmed.

"We played that at our last tattoo performance, but because it was part of a medley, we didn't acknowledge it was him you wrote it in honor of; I just wanted to be sure."

"You are absolutely right. Have you heard that, Rimfire?"

"I don't care if I ever do; rock music is my taste. Still, if that's up your alley, you'll get no argument from me. What's USMA mean, though?"

"It stands for United States Military Academy," Tom's father replied. "It means West Point, where cadets train to become disciplined and accomplished soldiers. We, professional musicians, accompany them throughout their day and perform at other appropriate occasions. I happen to be serving only part time, however, so I can run my other job teaching lessons at the local music store."

"I see," said Rimfire, nodding.

Back in Cat's Granby, Modo had finally gotten close enough to where he could bat Limburger back to jail as if he was a baseball player. Throttle, tossing Limburger, shouted, "Here's the pitch!" When Modo gave Limburger a knockout punch, it sent him flying. "Kiss that one goodbye!" Vinnie laughed.

Seeing as his cue to act, Stoker caught Limburger and flew over to Alcatraz, where he dropped the hated villain so that Limburger landed in one of two solitary confinement cells reserved for him in case he made it there (Hairball occupied the other one). "Oh, this has been a most distressing day!" he cried.

Back at the garage, Tom, his father, and Leo snapped to attention and saluted the Biker Mice when they returned. Then they faced left and did likewise to Stoker as soon he brought his feet back to Earth. "Bit of a spectacle for you, Tom," Throttle commented. "Not really the type of gift you'd want on your birthday, but it's the least we could do."

"All I really wanted for today was to see Old Glory flying high," Tom replied. "And she is."

"We got to meet your dad as well," said Modo. "That was neat."

"And thanks for your service; you and your comrades," Stoker added.

"And we shall continue to do America proud," Tom's father smiled as the group left for the nearest diner to eat lunch.


Biker Mice From Mars © Rick Ungar, Tom Tataranowicz, Tom Tataranowicz Animation, Brentwood Television Funnies, and whoever else owns the rights

Mario © Nintendo

Leo the Patriotic Lion, Tom the Patriotic Tiger, and his father, SSG Benjamin Wilder © me

Originally written on Flag Day (June 14th), 2012