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17: Living Up to Their Name
17: Living up to their Name


"Heads up, Commander!" one of Carlos's wingmates snapped in his ear, via radio.  "Those laser beams on the top egg are tracking you!"

"I'll worry about that, Lieutenant," Carlos shot back, twisting and reaving around a series of laser blasts.  "You just worry about taking out those eggs' reactors!"

"Roger that, Commander!"  One by one, his 5 wingmates that remained burrowed their way into a shaft that led directly to the reactor core on their respective targets.

<And it's time for me to do the same.>  Carlos quickly checked his instruments, casually destroying the last of those weapons emplacements as he did so.  It was then that he noticed the kind of progress that the Mine-Laying Cycles and the Siege Tanks were making.

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General Catton and his teammates stood on top of the roof of an office building, lost as to what to do.  Each time they tried to attack those Siege Tanks and Cycles, the nearby power of the Land Bombers and the awesome firepower of the Siege Tanks kept on holding them off.

Meowzma shook his head sadly as Catton held up a small transistor radio.  "You sure about this, General?" he asked.

"Of course, I am," Catton said.  "No better source for help than the Super-Cats."  He spoke into the radio.  "Major General Karate, this is General Catton.  If you're not busy, we could use some short help!"

"Hold on one second, General!" Aldonza's voice barked over the radio.  Seconds later, a Land Bomber went up like wildfire.  "Myself and Donatello will keep the Land Bombers busy so that Bat Cat can bomb the Siege Tanks!"  Another Land Bomber destroyed.  "After that, the rest of you guys can blast those Cycles!"

"Sounds good to me," Bat Cat said, "but the question is, can YOU handle it?"

"Bat Cat, I'm a pilot WITHOUT using my tail, too!  If you think THIS is good, you haven't seen me yet!  Now get going so I can Cyclone these jets!"

Bat Cat said only one word as the voice clicked off the radio: "Cool."  He grabbed hold of a sack of grenades that was laying nearby and took to the air.

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The robot commander of the lead siege tank detected a distant rumble far ahead of him.  "That's odd," it said aloud.  Siege tanks didn't have that far of a weapons range; the explosions had to have come from the air.

"SixShot One, I've lost contact with the squadron of Land Bombers.  They went after a pair of organics, and abruptly disappeared."  The driver of the siege tank looked at him, its metallic face having as close to a look of concern as you could get.

"INCOMING!!!" a voice screamed over the radio, wiping out any chance of a response.

The tank's commander threw his head around and stared at the viewscreen.  Filling up the screen almost entirely was a grenade, compliments of Bat Cat.  The commander never got a chance to order the tank out of the way, because the whole thing blew itself to bits.

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General Catton picked up the signal immediately: a small group of Mine-Laying Cycles, unprotected by the Siege Tanks.  "Here they come," he barked.  "10 of those Cycles are coming in.  Meowzma, you burrow underground and catch them by surprise.  They're laying mines at 30 meter intervals; you'll catch them at the 15 meter mark and then take care of whatever they leave behind.  Spritz, you soak the metal with your water guns and slow them down."

"And THEN what?" Spritz asked.

Catton pounded a fist into an open palm.  "I'll show them what firepower is all about!"

"Right!" Meowzma and Spritz said in unison.  The two of them departed for their respective posts.

Catton, meanwhile, smiled as he watched the Cycles come on in.

Those things would never know what hit them.

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10 minutes passed.

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Ambush Cat looked at the emergency report hastily, a bit impressed in the process; half the siege tanks destroyed by Bat Cat, with more each second; the entire compliment of Cycles wasted by General Catton's explosive firepower; the entire squadron of Land Bombers annilhated.  Also mentioned on the report was that Catton, Meowzma, and Spritz, aided by an unhindered group of Little Tokyo security forces, were quickly destroying the Sub-Land Artillery Units.

Which left it up to him to destroy what was left of the assault force: the 5 Stealth Tanks.

Ambush Cat heard a crumpling sound behind him.  Without stopping to see what it was, he dived into a nearby alley.  Peeking out, he saw the air in front of him twisting and curving, as if the air itself was distorted.  "Stealth Tank," he hissed.

The 5 Stealth Tanks uncloaked with a suddenness that almost made the cat jump.  In unison, the Tanks fired their Dragon Tow Rockets at a florist shop; the lightweight materials on the Stealth Tank allowed for quick reaction timing.  Decimating the building, the tanks cloaked again.

Ambush Cat, however, had been watching their every move.  Watching distortions in front of him, he slowly crept up to it, counting up to 5.  When he reached 2, he jumped on top of the fourth Stealth Tank in line.

That got a reaction from the rear Stealth Tank.  Uncloaking, it unleashed a hail of Rockets in Ambush Cat's direction.  Reaching the number 4, the cat jumped again.  Just as he hit the number 5, the Rockets that were fired hit the place where he had been seconds earlier----the Stealth Tank.

Watching the smoke of the wreckage drift skyward, Ambush Cat got another idea.  Grabbing lightweight pieces of the broken Tank in his mouth, he took off running and managed to get ahead of the front Stealth Tank, which uncloaked as he did so.  Moving as fast as he could without getting hit, he jammed a still-hot-and-blackened Tank gun into the barrel of the lead Tank, causing the other tanks to uncloak.  Leaping over some Rockets, the Black Maine Coon crammed some more pieces of wreckage into the barrels of the tanks.

Free at last, Ambush Cat dashed off to safety as the barrels of the Stealth Tanks overloaded and exploded.  This ignited a chain reaction within the insides of the Dragon Tow Rockets, causing them to backfire on their owners.

Ambush Cat remained where he stood, victorious.  Abruptly, he frowned.  "One thing remains," he snarled.

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Carlos Cosmos received the reports from his starfighter with a smile.  All-in-all, the tables had turned against the forces of Chaos Kitten: all Sub-Land Units, Land Bombers, siege tanks, Mine Cycles, and Stealth Tanks sent to the junkyard.

A flash of light almost made him jump.  Forcing himself to redirect his attention to his piloting, he nudged his ship above the array of internal weaponry directed against him.  Snapping his teeth, the expert pilot jabbed a button above him, and a pair of green-white missiles shot from the starboard side of the ship.

The two missiles implanted themselves on the two sides of the tunnel.  White lines, spreading themselves throughout the sides of the passageway like veins, reached the various cannons and launchers that had the business ends pointed at Carlos Cosmos.  With a few flickers and flashes, the weapons shut themselves off as the paraylzed computer circuitry did their work.

That did it.  Now Cosmos had full access to the massive internal chamber of the Land-Air Egg.

Outside, one by one, the other 5 Cosmos ships spun and dived their ways out of their respective targets.  The Eggs, spinning in their death throes, converged on a single spot right outside the fringe of the city.  Immediately, upon reaching that spot, they lit up the sky with explosions that would remind one of the destruction of the nuclear silo.  Unperturbed by the brilliance, the starfighters encircled the last Egg, waited for their commander to reappear.

Inside, Carlos's fighter appeared inside the huge chamber.  The reactor itself was equipped with a barrage of defensive weaponry, all aimed at Carlos.  Blinking suddenly, they fired, a ferocious army of ballistic armaments.

"BLAST!" Carlos shouted, slamming a fist against a console as he controlled the ship with his other paw.  As he brought his craft up, down, and all around in hopes of dodging everything, his mind started thinking at twice the speed.  That weaponry was forcing him to concentrate on his flying instead of firing anything, and he was mad.  Thinking quickly, his eyes lit upon a little white light next to his right arm.  Without even a second glance, he quickly elbowed it----

----and, abruptly, the cannons and missile launchers stopped firing at him.  "Carlos, why didn't you think of that cloaking device sooner?" he asked himself.

But now, he had a job to do.  "Time for this baby to bite the dust," Carlos purred.  He flipped a series of switches on the left side of his weapons console, and the whole ship started to glow green.  An auxilary cannon popped out the bottom of his ship.  The green glow intensified to a bright white that focused in the center of the cannon.  At last, Carlos tapped the "Disintegrate" button as he silently thanked the one who thought up the use of sunglasses for fighter pilots.

Nicknamed "Fury of the Xel'naga" by Curtis, Carlos had named it the Kao Cannon in honor of Goku.  This awesome blaster was the most powerful weapon his ship carried, and, as such, had enough firepower to make the atomic bomb look wimpy.  The "mere" titanium shielding of the reactor would not be powerful enough to keep it from going down.

All of those thoughts were roaring through Carlos's mind as his final shot of the battle was fired.  The white-green laser blast impacted against the shield of the reactor and sent the whole thing to destinations unknown, blowing away the entire outer casing and penetrating into the core.  The entire interior of the reactor chamber went white as Carlos instinctively turned the ship around to protect his eyes from the glare.  Without another thought, he blindingly punched the afterburners to the maximum and burst into the tunnel, one step ahead of the thunderous explosions.

Seconds later, his ship reached the end of the tunnel.  Those explosions had started to creep around his line of sight.....the heavy Gs caused by his spinning ship were starting to overwhelm him....

A voice crackled in his ear as he overcame his excitement, overriding some static.  ".....ing on, Commander?  That explosion was just TOO violent to have been done with lasers!"

Carlos looked behind him, short of breath: yes, that WAS the flaming wreckage of the Egg spinning around in the air, crashing into the ground and racing off to endless boundaries.

"Tell you all about it later," Carlos said, panting.  He slowed down the ship.  "Right now, I feel like I could use a nap.....I'm bringing my ship in for a landing at the Palace.  You and the others follow me."