Chapter 6The game gets rough

A few days later Callie sat at her desk in her office inside City Hall and was busy working on the next speech for Mayor Manx. After a while she took a short break in order to think about how to get on with it. She stood up from her chair and walked over to one of the windows. Admiring the spectacular view often helped her to clear her mind. It also seemed to be working fine this time, but then she suddenly saw something very disturbing at the horizon. At first she only recognized them as dots but it didn't take long for her to realize that it was another set of drones built by Dark Kat.

“Oh, no! Drones!” she shouted to herself. “I have to inform the Swat Kats and the Enforcers immediately!”

She ran over to her handbag and grabbed her communicator from it. As soon as she pressed its button the alarm went off at the salvage yard.

“Callie is calling us! I have a very bad feeling about this.” Chance said, as he walked over to the alarm. “Yes, Ms. Briggs?”

“Bad news, T-Bone!” Callie said. “Dark Kat's drones are closing in on City Hall. I'll also inform Commander Feral and get the Mayor out of here.”

“Understood, we are on our way. Take care, Ms. Briggs.”

As soon as he hung up the earphone he turned over to Jake.

“Hurry up, Jake! Dark Kat is attacking City Hall with his blasted drones!”

Both went into the hangar to dress up and man the Turbokat as quickly as possible.

“I hope you've equipped the Turbokat with the best that our arsenal has to offer.” T-Bone said as he started the engines.

“You can count on that!” Razor replied.

“Good. Let's hope we can still keep up with those flying pests.”

Then the Turbokat started to move quickly through the underground airfield. The hatch at the end of the airfield opened and a short moment later the Turbokat was high in the sky above Megakat City.

In the meantime back at City Hall, Callie smashed Mayor Manx's door open. The Mayor was currently practicing his golf techniques as usual. Startled by the unexpected and surprising appearance of Callie he made a powerful swing and hit the golf ball. It flew right towards Callie's head. Being filled up with adrenaline, Callie noticed it in time and ducked in order to evade it.

“Callie, what's the meaning of this?” Mayor Manx asked surprised.

“Dark Kat is about to attack City Hall! “ Callie shouted. “We have to get out of here, now!”

“Oh, no! Why is this always happening to me?” Manx complained to himself.

Callie grabbed Manx and said: “You can complain later! First, we have to get out of here!”

Both ran out of Mayor Manx's office towards the elevator, just in time to get enough distance to a drone which crushed right through the window. In an affect Callie grabbed the golf ball that lay on the floor. The drone made a lot of noise back in the office and Callie realized that it wouldn't take long until it would make its appearance on the corridor while the elevator doors would still be closed. So she threw the golf ball against the elevator panel. Luckily, the elevator was already on the same floor, so the doors opened almost instantly. As they had reached it, the drone appeared on the corridor and immediately noticed the two kats. It made a horrible noise while calculating the distance to its targets and adjusting its gun to perform a deadly shot.

“Get inside, quickly!” Callie shouted pushing Mayor Manx into a corner of the elevator where the drone wasn't able to shoot on sight. She immediately went there too and pressed the elevator button to the ground floor.

While she was doing this Manx started whining like usual in such situations: “This can't be happening. This has to be a nightmare.”

The doors closed just before the drone had reached the elevator. As the elevator started to move down they suddenly heard a blasting sound right above it. The drone had shot its way into the elevator shaft. Then a series of noises of metal scratching against metal followed as the drone seemed to follow the elevator, having problems to maneuver through the shaft.

“T-Bone, Razor, where are you?” Callie mumbled to herself while cowering at the floor of the elevator together with Manx.

Outside, the Turbokat arrived at City Hall.

“This doesn't look good.” T-Bone shouted. “The drones have already reached City Hall!”

“Let's hope that Callie and Manx have left the building by now.” Razor replied.

“I know this is foolish, but let's try to draw their attention to us in case they haven't.” T- Bone suggested.

“Affirmative.” Razor confirmed. “This shouldn't be too hard. Last time they got lock on us as soon as they've noticed us. I've upgraded our Mini Missiles. They will now explode when they come close to the drones creating a cloud of smaller EMPs. This should stop 'em.”

“Then what are you waiting for? Get a lock on them. I'll attract their attention.”

T-Bone flew closer to the drones while Razor got a lock on some of them. As the jet came closer the drones immediately changed into swarm formation and started their attack.

In Dark Kat's hideout, Hard Drive monitored the drone operation.

“Here come the Swat Kats again to get a good beating.” he said with an ugly smile on his face.

“We are not doing this to give them just a beating. I want those pesky Swat Kats destroyed once and for all!” Dark Kat demanded.

“Gee, calm down Dark Kat. The two won't survive this encounter for sure.”

“They better not. I'm getting tired of this game.”

Back at City Hall, T-Bone and Razor lured the drones away from the building. “Okay, Razor. We have enough distance to City Hall. You can start your attack now.”

“Affirmative.” Razor shouted. “Mini Missiles deployed!”

Two dozen mini missiles were fired from the Turbokat. The drones started firing at them, taking out about half of them before they came close enough. Then Razor initiated the exploding sequence of the remaining missiles. They've created a cloud of EMPs like he had expected, but they were absorbed by the shells of the drones.

“Crud!” Razor shouted. “Dark Kat seems to have fortified them with Anti-EMP-shells!”

“That's just great! Now what?” T-Bone asked concerned.

“I'll fire some tarpedoes at them. This should blind their sensors.”

“But they are way to slow.” T-Bone argued. “The drones will shoot them down before they get close enough.”

“That's why I'll fire the cement machine gun at them at the same time. This should keep them occupied and maybe some of them get hit in the crossfire.”

“Alright, let's do this!”

Razor fired the tarpedoes and the cement machine gun bullets. His plan seemed to be working as the drones concentrated on evading the wet cement bullets and trying to shoot them. As the tarpedoes came close enough they started to spray their black tar. Unfortunately, they didn't hit all of the drones. A few of them still had a clear visual on the Turbokat. Surprisingly for T-Bone and Razor the blinded drones were also still on their track.

“They are still following us!” T-Bone shouted.

“Yeah, I know.” Razor shouted back. “But how can that be? Most of them are blinded. They must be getting their information from the drones I've missed.”

“There must be a way to stop them!”

“Now it's time for desperate measures. I'll fire everything I've got at them while you initiate the afterburner.”

The Turbokat sped up and fired the rest of its arsenal at the drones.

“It's no use!” T-Bone shouted. “I can't shake them off!”

In the meantime, the elevator with Callie and Mayor Manx inside had reached the ground floor of City Hall. Both ran out of it as the drone was still being close by. When it had reached the elevator's ceiling it started to use its laser to cut a hole into it. Commander Feral and his niece Felina had just entered the building through the main entrance. Callie and Manx almost bumped right into them. Before they could say anything a part of the elevator's ceiling fell down onto its floor.

Felina immediately drew her weapon, targeted the elevator and shouted: “Get down!”.

In the next moment the drone appeared inside the elevator. Felina instantly fired a whole magazine of armor piercing bullets into the drone before it could get a clear shot on a target. The drone exploded with a big blast and the leftovers of the elevator fell down to basement floor with a loud crashing noise. Some fragments and dust were thrust into the entrance hall. After being sure that no more drones were following, Feral and Felina went over to Callie and Mayor Manx to help them up.

“Are you okay, Deputy Mayor?” Felina asked.

“I'm fine, I guess.” Callie responded. “Thanks for saving our lives.”

“Always a pleasure.”

“We have to get out of this place and to a save location.” Feral pointed out, while helping Mayor Manx to get back on his feet. “We have a car waiting outside. Let's get in there on the double!”

“What about the other drones?” Callie asked. “Aren't they still out there?”

“They were just leaving when we arrived,” Commander Feral explained. “Chasing the Swat Kats.”

“Oh no!” Callie said. “Hopefully T-Bone and Razor can handle them.”

“If they can't the Enforcers will. But please get into the car, now.” Feral insisted.

Then they left City Hall and entered the Enforcer car outside. Felina started the engine and hit the gas peddle.

“Where are we going?” Mayor Manx asked.

“To the harbor.” Feral explained. “We have to get you out of town. Megakat City isn't a save place for you anymore.”

In the meantime, the Swat Kats had been coincidentally chased near the harbor by the drones. Suddenly, the engines of the Turbokat were hit by a laser beam.

“Crud!” T-Bone shouted. “They've hit our engines! I'm loosing control!” The Turbokat started to roll while falling from the sky towards the sea. “T-Bone!” Razor shouted back. “We have to eject!”

“Affirmative!” T-Bone replied. “Please stay in one piece.” he said to the Turbokat.

T-Bone and Razor were thrust out of the jet with their ejector seats rolling towards the sky. They activated the jet nozzles of their seats in order stabilize their position.

“We are sitting ducks here!” T-Bone shouted.

“Let's try to vanish in the clouds.” Razor suggested. “Maybe they'll loose our track.”

“Affirmative!”

They put on their oxygen masks in order to be able to breathe, being up high in the sky. While flying towards the clouds, T-Bone looked back at the Turbokat and saw that the jet just crashed onto the water surface a few miles away from the harbor.

Back at Dark Kat's hideout, Hard Drive started to joy: “It seems the Swat Kats have just lost their precious jet!”

“Good. Now finish them off!” Dark Kat demanded.

“Don't worry, the drones certainly will.”

The drones stopped following the Turbokat and continued their pursuit on T-Bone and Razor.

“Let's try to vanish in the clouds… Maybe they'll loose our track.” - Illustration by Jan Rathje

“Let's try to vanish in the clouds… Maybe they'll loose our track.” - Illustration by Jan Rathje

“Crud! We won't be there in time.” T-Bone realized in desperation. “Matthew was right. They got the upper hand on us now.” Then he looked into Razor's direction and said: “Buddy, we probably won't survive this. So I want you to know that it was always being great having you at my side as my partner and my friend.”

“The same to you, T-Bone.” Razor replied. “But I'm not going down without a fight. Activate laser guns, now!”

The laser guns and the targeting sights integrated into their seats were extended. They locked on the two closest drones and started firing. They hit them, but the other ones immediately started firing back at them such that they had a hard time to evade the shots.

“I think this is it then!” T-Bone shouted.

Suddenly a huge swarm of large insects was closing in, being on collision course with the drones.

“What's that?” T-Bone asked.

As soon as the insects had landed on the shells, they moved over to the drones' sensors and started to drill in like little mosquitoes, damaging them.

“Whatever they are, they seem to be helping us. Now is our chance to shoot the drones down.” Razor answered.

Suddenly Matthew's voice came through their radio transceivers: “See, I've told you that you'll be need some help with these drones.”

“Matthew!” T-Bone responded. “I didn't expect you coming to help us. I'm so glad to hear your voice. What are these things?”

“I'll explain it to you later.” Matthew answered. “Just shoot these drones down while you can and don't mind my little friends. Unlike you, they are expendable, although they are very helpful at the moment. Let's meet down at the harbor once you've finished them off.”

“Alright Matthew, see you there. T-Bone out.”

T-Bone and Razor started to fire their laser guns at the drones which were no match for them anymore, now that the insects were messing with their sensors. But they still had to take care not collide with them while shooting them down. A short time later the last drone fell down from the sky. T-Bone and Razor headed towards the harbor, like they had agreed with Matthew.

At Dark Kat's hideout Hard Drive started shouting: “No! This cannot be! How could they,”

“Any problems, Hard Drive?” Dark Kat asked in a calumnious and intimidating voice.

“The drones almost had them!” Hard Drive started to explain. “But then they were distracted by something.”

“Distracted by what?” Dark Kat asked even more intimidating.

“I'm currently checking the logs to find out.” Hard Drive answered while entering some commands into the computer console he was sitting at. A short time later he concluded his analysis: “It seems that they have been attacked by a large number of much smaller drones. They have been blocking their sensors and messing with them. I guess the Swat Kats used this diversion to get the upper hand on them. But who could have send them?”

“Maybe your old friend Matthew Doubt?” Dark Kat guessed angrily. “I told you, you should have got rid of him when you had the chance.”

“I said the same to you when we had captured the Swat Kats once, remember?” Hard Drive countered. “So we are even.”

“Don't push me, Hard Drive!” Dark Kat threatened. ”You are in no position to argue.”

“Calm down, Dark Kat!” Hard Drive replied, noticing that he almost had crossed the line. “I've deleted all files related to Sally from the Young Industries servers and made sure deleting their backups as well. Matthew couldn't come up with something like that in such a short amount of time. Also, Sally has analyzed these pesky drones so their action won't go unnoticed next time.”

“Next time. Next time!” Dark Kat shouted furiously. “How many attempts do you want to make? Didn't you promise that the Swat Kats would be history by now?”

“Hey! This is not my fault.” Hard Drive justified. “No one could have predicted that something like this would happen.”

“I'm having enough of this wild goose chase.” Dark Kat said. “It is time to outnumber them.”

“How?” Hard Drive asked. “I thought it would take days to gather enough material for the drones and to assemble them.”

“Yes, that's why we have to extend our production.” Dark Kat started to explain. “You see, while you were fooling around, I've sent my servants to take over some of the factories in the industrial area of Megakat City and to 'persuade' the personnel to work for me. Your little game attracted the attention of the Enforcers quite well, so it will be too late for them to realize in time what happened there. I've also assembled another set of drones which have been brought to the factories in order to secure them.”

“But why didn't you tell me?” Hard Drive asked surprised.

“Because I only tell you what you need to know. Besides, it is always wise to have a backup plan. Now activate these drones to seal off the industrial area!”

Hard Drive gulped and did what he was told.