Eureka Kats 9.99:
Building a Legacy
by Fur and Fantasy
NC-17 for M/M
full contents and notes located at the bottom of the file
"Mine!" Terra howled her claim to her siblings and tore off after a highly maneuverable insect that had found it's way into their playroom. The natural luster of her laired brown, gray and rust colored fur nearly glowed as she passed through beams of sunlight from the high windows.
"Mine!" Jessie challenged her playfully and angled for an intercept of the small, swiftly moving object.
Just as Terra was about to grab its long, stiff tail, the dragonfly abruptly shot up - and Jessie and Terra bowled into each other, rolling across the floor in a tangle of limbs and yelps.
"Sillies," Mina yawned, standing up and walking over to see if they were both okay.
"Prey," Jessie countered. "Hunt. Like Mom."
"It's a bug," Mina pointed out. "Okay?" She looked at her sisters, then up at the dragonfly that was flying back towards the window it had entered through. "Too small," she whined, though she still went over to the door and tried to climb up, wondering if she might be able to get them out.
They got walked regularly now that they could walk, but it was still more fun to go out on their own. Maybe Lojack and Rass would come by soon to play with them outside. They both knew how to get the door to open.
"Steps," Terra barked sharply and scrambled for the door. "Intruder! Intruder!" she continued to bark, her tone getting more serious when Jessie joined her in warning the human off.
"It's Taggart," Mina pointed out with a sniff at the air through the window, rolling her eyes as she walked over to greet the human. Maybe he wasn't that much fun, but barking at the door wouldn't get anything they wanted either. He was not the type to be warned off his own den.
"Taggart's slow," Jessie huffed, even though she backed off and stopped barking as Taggart opened the door.
"Still Taggart," Mina pointed out.
"Yes, I am," Taggart said as he stepped in and closed the door, privately satisfied at the shocked looks all three puppies were giving him. "Where's Zack?"
"Zack here, Taggart," the submissive male answered him from a spot well away from the open areas, but also in a warm patch of sunlight. The multi-tone brown pup, still smaller than any of his sisters, was still the size of a small St. Bernard. "Play?" he wagged his tail and play-bowed hopefully.
Jessie and Terra both huffed irritably. Taggart looked between them; getting the translator had been a good idea, it seemed ... it would certainly be easier to communicate with them.
"I think we can play some... how well are you four talking?"
"Good," Jessie asserted forcefully. "We learn fast."
"Let's prove it then. Get your harnesses and let's go out for today's lesson."
Jessie and Terra hesitated, not liking the way they'd been 'tricked' into the lessons. It only lasted a moment before they padded towards the back of the building-sized room to fetch the harnesses that Taggart usually got.
This was the only time that Zack was first in line, and allowed to stay there.
As they came back, Zack cheerfully trailing his leash behind him, the harness already around his head, Taggart knelt to settle and fastened them correctly.
"Today's shouldn't be too hard for you four; you're just going to have to figure out how to do what I tell you to this time," he told them, an irritable look still on Jessie's face. "If you want hints, you'll have to ask for them."
"How Taggart know us now?" Jessie demanded as he checked her harness.
"How do I understand you? I got a translator today that helps me know just what you're actually saying, instead of just what it sounds like. English won't really work for you, in four-legged forms."
He caught the way the four of them exchanged looks, then focused on him very carefully, searching for the object that allowed him to listen in on their previously private conversations.
"We stand up. Be like Jo soon," Mina told him. "Use People-talk then."
"That's good to hear; I'd been hoping you'd be able to shift soon," he said easily, even though he was sure they had no better idea of when that would happen than anyone else. "But I'll still listen in on you when you're talking like this... at least while I'm around. You're just going to have to be more careful to keep secrets," he winked.
"We remember," Jessie told him with a grim determination that was completely ill-suited to her youth.
"You know, I'm not an enemy," he pointed out. "So, want to head out?"
"Jessie Alpha," Mina said evenly. "Everyone enemy to Alpha."
"Yes, we head out," Zack yipped excitedly.
"You're not Alpha to everybody," Taggart pointed out to Jessie, taking their leashes. "Everybody get lined up, then we'll go."
Zack got in place eagerly, his tail wagging and a grin on his muzzle. Mina wasn't far behind, and while he could read the annoyance in Jessie and Terra's body language, they complied quickly.
No matter what was grumbled, Jessie really did like these outings. She just wanted them on her own terms, something that Taggart didn't let her even pretend was the case.
Once they were all ready to go, Taggart opened the door, stepping out as they followed, noses high, sniffing the air around them as he started leading them off towards the forest.
"This is going to be a bit different from your usual training," he told them. "You've been picking things up pretty well, so I'm going to try something more complex today."
There were general sounds of interest, even though they were mostly paying attention to their environment. He really should build them a large outside enclosure to play in as well.
"I have hidden five objects within a square mile of the starting point. While you will be able to find each by yourself easily enough, you will have to cooperate to retrieve each item, and will likely have to cooperate to figure out how to retrieve each item," he explained as they walked.
"Hunt?" Terra asked with a hopeful woof, wagging her tail at the idea.
"You'll have to find the items, yes; they're five of your toys, so you know what you're looking for, but they're not all necessarily in natural places."
"Easy hunt," Jessie woofed, now openly excited at an easy training time and getting to the playtime soon.
"We'll see about that," Taggart chuckled as they reached the starting point. "So, I'll let you four go; come back if you need a hint, if you get one of the toys, or if you need some help with something. If you get into trouble, howl for me."
"Yes," Zach agreed immediately, soon to be followed by the others.
With a nod Taggart unsnapped their leashes and watched as Jessie and Terra immediately went to work with their noses, seeking their toys. Zack and Mina were also hunting together. All in all, it was the usual start to their hunts and easily the most egalitarian the group got; it didn't matter who caught the scent, they got praise and positive attention for it.
Quickly, the two groups took off in opposite directions. Taggart chuckled slightly; it would be interesting to see how they handled these ... especially if they found the ones that couldn't be handled by just two of them.
Taggart took out a portable view screen tracking system that Dr. Orwell had created for him in this training space. While it would display the tracking beacons from the rice-sized devices he had injected between their shoulder blades, it was really for displaying the view from various cameras she had installed about the training property.
Meanwhile, Jessie and Terra were making progress towards their goal.
"Blue ball?" Terra asked her sister curiously, trying to place just what it was they were after. It smelled about right ... hard to tell though, the rubber smell tended to block out the smells that indicated which particular one it was.
"Yes," Jessie agreed, though it wasn't full of confidence until she spotted it. "In box," she nosed at the clear case surrounding their toy.
"Lid?" Terra suggested, moving around it, pawing at the box that seemed to be fastened to the ground.
"No lid," Jessie grumbled as she pawed it herself, and resorted to trying brute force to move the box, then chewed at it while Terra watched and began to look around.
She saw the ill-concealed line linked to the bottom of the box and followed it cautiously.
"Jessie!" She barked, following the line and nosing it carefully, making sure it wasn't going to shock her. "Tied on."
Jessie looked up, her black fur blending in as much as the gray blaze and star on her chest stood out. Without a sound she joined her sister in investigating where this attachment went and how it tied in to the box with their toy.
After a few moments of tracking it, Terra found a larger button. She pressed her foot down on it, and heard a click.
"Got it!" She yipped, turning to bolt back to the box - hearing the click of it closing as she lifted her foot. "Oops."
"Step on it," Jessie ordered. "Stay."
Terra did as she was told, whining in frustration, pretty sure that Jessie was going to go get the ball.
And she'd been the one who'd found the button. Oh well... maybe she'd be able to get the next one. She heard the box click open and Jessie's jaws close around the squeaky ball.
She lifted her foot when Jessie was clear of the box with their toy and lifted her nose in a howl of victory. The hunt was successful.
"Back to Taggart?" Terra asked, loping over to her sister, tail wagging excitedly. "One more first?"
"One more," Jessie grinned at her and bounce-threw the ball for her sister to chase and catch. "I hear a Taggart bird."
Terra nabbed the ball and chased after Jessie, tail wagging the whole time at the prospect of the treats they'd get from the device when they found it. Taggart always put really special yummies inside it.
They bounced the ball back and fourth, chasing after it as needed, while they followed their ears to the chirping mechanical bird perched high in a tree.
Terra got to the tree first and barked a welcome to the bird, which chirped back, then went into a fairly complex song instead of the simple 'find me' chirping it had done so far.
Jessie put the ball down and focused on the pattern and meaning of what the bird was 'saying' and what they had to say in reply.
"Doesn't work," Terra growled.
Jessie gave it a try, her howls and barks answering correctly, she was sure of it. She flattened her ears in agreement and let out a sharp, drawn-out howl to call Taggart to them.
"He fix," Jessie said and grabbed the ball to throw it, intent on having fun while they waited.
The two pups played catch while they waited for Taggart to get there, Terra trying to think of what was going on while she could.
"Maybe got wet?" She offered, catching the ball and tossing it back.
"Or hunted," Jessie offered, thinking of the large birds that hunted small birds. "Makes noise a lot."
"Doesn't look hurt. Could be," Terra mused, looking up as she caught a new scent. "Taggart's coming!"
Jessie raised her voice in greeting, creating a tow-voiced cacophony for him to home in on.
"Bird broke," Jessie told him, wagging her tail in greeting.
"It did, did it?" Taggart asked, moving up to the "bird." It wasn't a bad word for it - he'd programmed them to move around, and to test their pattern recognition. He waited for it to cycle through again, then chuckled.
"Listen closer," he instructed them. "It's working fine."
"Can't be," Terra said confidently. "Doesn't work. Too much to do."
"We got too good," Jessie stated confidently and focused on listening to the bird again. "We both have to answer parts."
"That is the lesson today," Taggart chuckled. "I'll see you back at the meeting point then," he said, turning around to head off while Jessie and Terra picked up their points and started figuring out how to harmonize them properly.
He wanted to get back in time to really watch Mina and Zack work out the pit trap they had found. He knew they had seen the concept, he'd made sure of it, but how well they made the transition between seeing it and putting it to use was another matter.
At the pit in question, Mina and Zach were circling around it. They could see the rope-tug at the bottom, along with a few other things... but they knew it was too deep to just jump out of, with the space that was in it.
"I'll get it," Zach volunteered after a few moments, jumping down to toss it up and out. With the job done, he looked around the bottom, trying to find something to get out with. There was another piece of rope... a couple handles....
He picked up the rope, gnawing on it while he thought. Handles wouldn't be too much good down here.
"Toss it up," Mina called down to him. "Climb it. I hold."
He looked up at her, then put it together.
"Right!" He barked, tossing the rope up. It took a few tries, but eventually Mina caught it, moving back and holding it firm.
If she managed to slip in, they'd need Taggart... though they both thought they'd rather spend the night out than have to admit it to Jessie and Terra.
Mina grunted and dug her thick claws into the earth hard, backing up against his weight as soon as she realized just how heavy her brother was. She knew she could hold on to the rope long enough. What she didn't know was whether she could hold to the ground long enough.
His claws were just breaking the edge of the pit when she had to give up, letting it go before she was pulled in after him.
"Ouch!" He yelped as he hit the bottom.
"Sorry!" She yipped apologetically as he tried to collect himself.
"It's okay ... gonna try something." He tossed the rope up to her, giving her a moment to brace herself, then jumped, catching onto the edge and starting to scramble up as well as fast he could while Mina backed up to pull out the slack. This time, he managed to get up, grinning, covered in dirt and mud as he looked at her.
"Did it!" He howled happily.
She grinned back and joined his victory howl before modulating her voice to convey what they had found and where.
"Take to Taggart?" Zack asked before he picked up the rope toy and waved it at her, inviting her to play tug-o-war.
She grinned and hurried up, grabbed it and started to run back with him, the two of them tugging back and forth as they went.
"Good fetch," Taggart greeted the pair with a look of pride and honest praise. "That was a tricky one."
Zach woofed happily, wagging his tail as Taggart reached down to scratch him between the ears.
"Nicer than Jessie," the younger pup rurred, pressing into Taggart's hand and enjoying the fact that Mina was quite content with the one hand she was getting attention from.
"Are you ready to go look for the next toy?" Taggart asked without stopping petting them. "There are three left."
"Yep!" Mina yipped enthusiastically, stepping off and sniffing the air.
About an hour later, the pups had finished finding all five toys, and were in the midst of enjoying them during the playtime that always followed their training sessions. Jessie was still giving him dirty looks for greasing the tree the last toy had been in; they'd ended up having to climb up on top of each other to make a stairway, and Mina had managed to work things around so that she was the one who'd ended up on top rather than Jessie.
Which, as sisters were prone to do, she was teasing Jessie about every chance she had, and would probably continue to until Jessie decided she was tired enough of it to put her in her place. Taggart doubted it would take more than another hour, if that. Jessie tended to rule with an iron paw, not too different from her mother in many ways.
His head snapped up at the sound of an engine turning over, and he broke into a run as he realized it was his truck turning on.
Who the Hell would try to steal his truck? Even the kids in Eureka tended to give it a wide berth... it came from being willing to use a tranquilizer rifle to defend it, he supposed.
"Hey!" He shouted as he saw the taillights coming on.
A fairly large, raggedy dog jumped out of the front and looked at him, openly startled. Before he could even react, it jumped back into the cab, then out again with something in her mouth, he realized as he IDed Ress.
"Now what have you got," he muttered, breaking into a run towards the truck again as he realized she'd probably grabbed the keys... how the Hell had she managed to start the car?
He reached into the bed of the truck, and realized that his rifle wasn't there.
"Not today," Lojack woofed from the edge of the woods, the gun at his feet, a canine grin plastered across his face.
"All right you devils, what are the two of you up to?" He growled, taking off after Ress as she barked graphically insulting taunts and waved the keys in the air, taking off into the trees.
He didn't have time to think about how much he didn't want to understand those two, not ever, and especially not in English, as he reached the tree she'd disappeared behind just in time to see her double back towards the truck.
He took out the translator, pocketing it as he turned to run back after her. Easier to catch her if he could focus on the little bitch.
She jumped back up into the bed of the truck, and he followed her. She ducked into his open carrying cage, and he knelt down to follow her.
"Not that smart after all, are you?" He grumbled, crawling in after her. "Now give me the keys, and you can just go home this time...."
She woofed at him, a smart-aleck look on her face before she somehow squirmed under him and slicked by to the door.
"Why you ...." he growled at her and lunged into the turn just in time to have the cage door slam closed in his face and the automatic locks click closed.
Ress and Lojack both howled triumphantly as they bounded up to the truck, climbing around the front. The truck started as the four pups finally came out to see what was going on... and were left behind as the truck pulled out and towards town. They tried to keep up, but it was hopeless. Even their mother would have been extremely hard pressed to manage the pace.
A few minutes later, in downtown Eureka, Carter and Jo were enjoying a reasonably quiet day... when they heard the sound of Taggart's horn blaring.
"What the Hell's wrong with him now?" Carter asked with a groan.
"He should still be training the pups," Jo frowned and stood to check it out, Carter right behind her.
"Is that... a dog driving?" Carter asked dubiously as they saw the truck lazily ambling down the street now that it was in a safe place to do so.
"Not a dog, Lojack." Jo informed him stiffly, though he couldn't be sure whether it was from indignity for her boyfriend or trying to hold back the laughter he was desperate to keep contained. "And yours as well; somebody has to be working the pedals."
"Has this happened before?" Carter asked, deciding that this would qualify the canine for the title of 'the devil' that Taggart insisted he was. Ress ... he'd just have to deal with her later. How, he wasn't sure, but he'd need to if he wanted to survive his deputy and animal control.
"This? No," Jo said easily. "On the other hand, I'm not honestly sure if this tops the Marshmallow Incident or not."
"Do I even want to know?" Carter sighed as the truck drove past them slowly, and he saw a rather broken-looking Taggart curled up in the back as if by hiding his face he could hide his identity from the onlookers.
"Probably not, no. Come on, I think it's time to stop the show," Jo said, jogging out towards the car, which was moving slowly enough she didn't need to worry about driving to catch up.
It obediently slowed down a bit more, and the two canines woofed playfully at her before they jumped out the passenger side and trotted off, leaving her to deal with the truck and it's prisoner.
She climbed into the back end after grabbing Taggart's keys, undoing the lock and opening the cage as Carter did his best to disperse the crowd.
"You okay?" She asked him.
"How can I be okay?" he nearly hissed, his entire body shaking as he struggled to control the humiliation enough to have this conversation. "You saw what they did to me!"
"Physically okay then," she growled lowly. "That wasn't really sized for people."
"Yes, yes physically okay," he nodded, responding quickly to her dominance and subtle threat.
"Can you get yourself back home, and where are the pups?" Jo asked, trying to keep him focused on what needed to be thought about. There would be plenty of time to mentally collapse later.
"Yes, and in the training area," he hesitated as he realized they could be anywhere by now, and saw just how serious Jo took it in her eyes. "They all have trackers in them," he reminded her. "Training went well."
"You get in the truck, I'll take my cruiser," Jo told him and turned around to quickly explain the situation and what she was doing to the sheriff.
"Go ahead," Carter told her before she'd even finished. "I can handle things here for a few hours... go get things straightened out."
Chance roared as he pumped his third load of seed deep into Jake's ass later that night. He leaned against his mate with a low groan, the two of them finally spent for a while after getting home from a day at work - Jake in the lab, and Chance running more tests of the production model TurboKat.
"You hear about Taggart earlier?" Chance asked with a low purr a few minutes later, the two of them relaxing in the hot tub they'd just been mating in.
"Mmm, yeah," Jake relaxed in his embrace and quite happily leaned forward to bury his nose against Chance's shoulder.
"Wonder if anybody took pictures," Chance chuckled slightly. "So, how's it going with Lurin lately?"
"Probably everybody," Jake snickered. "I'm enjoying it," he kept his answer as devoid of details as possible. He really wanted to avoid getting grilled too hard over what they were doing with Eureka's full healing technology at their disposal.
He had a feeling that Chance would probably take it almost as poorly as he was sure Marie would.
"And probably more than either of us want to know you are," Chance guessed from the vague answer. "I've been thinking about him, lately... about the timing between when he showed up and things started getting screwy too."
"I know," Jake signed into Chance's thick golden fur. "I have too, a lot. The only sticking point, really, is that if he is Dark Kat, why am I still alive? Lurin barely asks me to explain anything, and nothing SWAT, too. I can't see Dark Krud being that self-controlled."
"I thought about that too," Chance nodded. "What if he isn't Dark Kat though... just being followed by him? It'd make sense, really. Explain why the designer was taking the jet up too, if he was trying to get away or save it from being stolen. Dark Krud could've followed him through with something stealthed, and managed to hide before anybody knew to look for him."
"Wouldn't be the first time," Jake murmured and went to work chewing on this idea. "If he did, what can we do about it before he shows himself? We've never been able to find him before."
"Well... he's gotta be based somewhere," Chance pointed out. "Maybe Taggart and Jo know some way to tap into the surveillance in the sewers? Seems like the best place for him."
"If they don't, Cindy would," Jake nipped his ear teasingly. "Wouldn't be a bad idea. Maybe start a serious effort to trace all the energy draws that aren't sanctioned too. Whatever he does, he'll need power."
"His Creeplings stole a mini-nuclear reactor, remember?" Chance grumbled, realizing just why they'd probably done it now. "Damn it, he knew we'd catch onto him...."
"I still don't understand why he hasn't killed us," Jake murmured. "We're easy targets here; out in the open and obvious."
"Maybe he doesn't want to expose himself yet," Chance mused. "Either way, means we've got a chance to find him before he does something big this time. Never really had time back home."
"True," Jake mused. "Taggart and Jo will be invaluable, given their knowledge of the more remote spaces here. Unless he managed to get a holo-belt, he's going to be quite obvious.
"To the tune of 'couldn't hide if he wanted to,'" Chance nodded, rubbing Jake's back. "Of course... if it is Lurin, he's better at hiding than we thought."
"The understatement of the century on all counts," Jake murmured and nuzzled his mate. "Have to think of a way to flush him out, especially if he is Lurin."
"Maybe we can figure out some sort of bait," Chance offered, returning the nuzzle.
"Who are we baiting and what with?" Marie asked, setting down the food she'd brought back from Vincent's by the tub.
"Dark Kat, and we aren't sure yet," Jake caught her up. "It's looking more likely than not that he's here."
"Dandy," she grumbled. "He's the one who builds massive vehicular weapons and tries to blow up cities, right?"
"He's more interested in blowing up Enforcer HQ and taking over cities," Jake said. "What's weird is that he's kept his head down this long."
"What would you guys have done if you hadn't been found right away?" Marie pointed out, stripping down and sliding into the water with a low groan. "Remind me never to volunteer for taking care of werewolf pups for an afternoon again."
"Gone to ground, hacked the hell out of various networks to find out what was going on and probably had a rather tough time of it until we got home," Jake summarized their basic game plan for trips.
"Now, think about it if you'd were a psychotic megalomaniac... he needs to stay under cover until he's got supplies."
Jake nodded slightly. "Except he's likely to be as focused on getting back to Aristal as I was at first. He's fixated on MegaKat City. There are much softer targets back home, but he hasn't gone to those."
"He'd still need to stay low, whatever he was trying to do," Marie pointed out, opening up a tray of fried peppers for the guys. "It's just a question of what he'd be trying to get for supplies... stuff for a portal back, or stuff for a weapon. Probably a lot of the same sort of thing at first."
Jake signed and took a pepper, feeding it to Chance before answering her.
"You're assuming he uses technology, or at least pure technology. Aristal has a long history of true magic. Not slight of hand like what you know today, but the real thing; fireballs, commanding dragons and time travel by will alone; that kind of thing. It's been theorized for some time that Dark Kat is the modern kind of mage. One who uses technology as a guise to affect the world with their magic."
"I suppose," she nodded, opening another tray and taking some chicken fingers from it. "But stealing that reactor ... didn't you say he usually had those Creeplings? That's why you think he's here, after all."
"Yeah," Chance nodded and took a chicken finger, dipping it in blue cheese sauce before munching on it. "So you believe in that technomage stuff?" he nuzzled Jake.
"I'm not discounting it," he admitted. "Callista thought it sounded like enchantment-type magic."
"Magic is real?" Marie stared at him. "Real, real?"
"Yes, it's very real," Jake nodded. "Running Enforcer theory is that Razor's a technomage too, though Callista said I didn't have enough talent for it."
"Hadn't heard that one," Chance admitted.
"Yes, Creeplings stole the reactor," Jake nodded. "Which means that Dark Krud is going to be that much harder to track. This world is completely unprepared for one of his creations."
"I'll make sure the TK's in good shape," Chance murmured. "At least it won't necessarily be just us against him, if we can get the production model up to snuff fast enough. Any idea how much longer it'll take?"
"The jet isn't the problem, it'll be getting enough to matter if we can't take him out this time." Jake said quietly. "It's going to be up to us and B/D."
"Yeah, well things are different here," Chance said darkly, rubbing Jake's back. "This time, we won't stop when we used to."
"What's that supposed to mean?" Marie asked him.
"Before, we stopped when he wasn't dangerous anymore. Had to, to get away from Feral. He'd try to blow something up, we'd stop the plan and hope he'd finally bought it so we could get away before Feral caught us. This time, I'm not gonna stop until I've got a body."
"There's a line that vigilantes are tolerated to," Jake elaborated. "Murder, even in stopping an Omega, is well past that line. Legally, it might be self-defense, but it would draw too much attention you don't want from both sides. We were high on the Omega's hit list too, but we've never done more than irritate them. Killing one intentionally ... we probably wouldn't last a month afterwards."
"And here, you can do it without the fallout," Marie murmured.
"Here, if we don't do it, the fallout's gonna be worse," Chance said certainly. "MKC was used to Dark Kat and his type. This world isn't."
"Here we're legal defenders," Jake added. "It's part of our actual job again, to do this."
"That helps too," Chance nodded.
"And what if it is Lurin?"
"I'll deal with it," Jake kind of shrugged; a move that expressed his acceptance that Fate could be cruel at times. "He's likely to be dead when we find out, if it is him."
"If not, I'll be the one pulling the trigger anyway," Chance added firmly, and for once Jake was in no mood to counter the assertion.
"I'll keep hoping it doesn't go there then," Marie murmured, having a bit more dinner. "On a related topic, word's out about Lurin, right?"
"Yes," he nodded. "And I've taught those who are interested in him anyway the way to talk to him to get what they want. There hasn't been another incident that I've heard of."
"Good," Marie nodded. "If there is, he'll be discovering all new ways to be irritated for the rest of his stay here."
"You know, I remember that phrase and tone from Academy," Chance snickered, breaking the mood. "Jake here had quite the vengeful streak back then."
"Oh dear," Marie giggled slightly. "Well, I'm guessing that he didn't try a retrovirus that'd make him allergic to fur, so what sort of things did you guys get up to?"
"Sabotaged bullies cars, mysteriously got them kicked off the football team and dropped from classes they needed," Jake tried to downplay it. "All without a trace of them having been there in the first place. Computers liked me, and I'm a respectable thief when it's needed."
"Oh c'mon," Marie giggled. "There had to be more there than just that?"
"He's being quiet about it," Chance smirked. "Got the quarterback dropped from the team, right before homecoming - and the team actually won the game without him, so his backup took center stage."
"Lance never did recover," Jake added, openly pleased with himself. "He really needed to be taken down a few notches."
"So what did you do with a fur allergy?" Chance asked with a grin.
"Oh, nothing yet, just what I'm going to do if I hear Lurin pushes the line again... especially if it's with Cindy somehow," Marie shrugged a bit. "I had other ways to get back at people when I was in school," she smirked.
"Do tell," Jake grinned at her from Chance's lap. "I want to hear about your mischievous side."
"Yeah, that way we know what to watch for," Chance grinned back, nuzzling Jake's neck.
"Depended on the mood I was in, really," Marie chuckled, moving closer to snuggle as they finished eating. "Sometimes it was just simple things - leaving a giant slug in somebody's locker or something. Then there was the time I trained one of the flying monkeys to bomb a target ... nobody ever did figure out who it was that was dropping rotten fruit on people's cars."
"Except your father, I bet," Chance grinned at her. "Is that monkey still around?"
"Nah, he died a few years back," Marie shook her head. "The really fun one was a bit more involved though... Taggart almost skinned me alive for it before it was all done," she giggled.
"So what did you do?" Jake demanded with a grin and pulled her close for a lingering kiss.
"Mmm ... made a mutt who looked purebred," Marie purred. "There was a family in Eureka who raised these beautiful purebred bloodhounds. Good natured dogs, but their owners acted like genetic engineering was a cardinal sin against nature itself," she explained, rolling her eyes. "You can imagine what they thought of Dad and me. For the record, they weren't biologists; they worked in quantum physics, just bred bloodhounds on the side.
"Anyways, they kept talking about how the genetics didn't matter," she explained, "how you could see a good quality breeding dog. So I made sure I'd have takers for up to a large litter of puppies, and made sure they got what looked like a good quality bloodhound bitch. They moved away after weaning the pups, which didn't look a damned thing like purebred bloodhounds by the time their mother's screwed up parentage got through with them. They got reassigned just after the pups had been weaned. From what I understand, their daughter'd fallen in love with the bitch, so they had her spayed and kept her."
"And if they hadn't?" Chance asked, raising an eyebrow dubiously.
"I'd have taken her in, of course!" Marie chided him. "I might not have the most PETA-friendly attitude towards animals, but I had it all planned out so that every pup who'd be involved, and the mother, would have good homes... one of 'em ran away, I understand, but aside from that they're all doing pretty well, living lives as normal mutts through the country, thanks to reassignments."
"Was that one who escaped happen to be named Lojack?" Jake asked with a teasing look.
"If it was, Taggart wouldn't have bothered skinning me," Marie snickered, "I'd have quietly disappeared years ago! Nah, I don't remember her name off-hand... Juniper, Juno, something like that. Smart, but not brilliant or anything... just bloodhound-smart."
"Might be Ress' mother then, though I wouldn't tell that to Taggart," Chance winked at her. "That girl's got bloodhound in her."
"She might be," Marie nodded. "Not that I plan on bringing it up. I don't know for sure, he was just irritated with me for taking any chance that our erstwhile breeders might just turn the bunch of them loose to get rid of them."
"Most breeders with any reputation to them would put damaged goods down before turning them loose," Jake shrugged. "Surprised he doesn't know that."
"I don't think he thought overly much of their being breeders with any reputation to them," Marie shrugged back. "Lord knows no decent breeder I know would have paid as little attention to the written pedigree as they did, looking good or not."
"Ah," Jake nodded. "No, they probably wouldn't have."
"So, Chance," Marie grinned at him charmingly. "Your turn."
"Hoo boy," Chance laughed, shaking his head. "You interested in the general hellraising, or just the highlights that don't make me sound like a refugee from a JD hall?"
"But you are a refugee from JD hall," Jake twisted around to kiss him, a gleeful tone in his voice.
"We'll settle for the highlights," Marie assured him.
"Good," Chance chuckled, kissing Jake back. "Not all of it was good-natured type stuff; I was in and out for B&E a few times too. Nothing too nasty; nothing worse than a few B&E's and being an errand boy for some numbers rackets. Good thing too, or I probably wouldn't have made it past the Enforcer screening. Highlight reel... well, most of my stories involve the Broom Street crew either way. Probably my favorite ones involved teaching some of the hot shots who came around slumming to give us a bit of respect."
"This is starting to sound like something out of an urban drama," Marie chuckled slightly.
"Hey, it was sometimes," Chance shrugged. "I didn't learn to get in and out of places like Melody's house from SWAT. Anyways, since we were in one of the nicer bad neighborhoods, it wasn't too rare for guys and girls with some money to come nosing around looking for cheap dates they could feel superior to. String 'em along for a while, get what you wanted, then dump 'em and go off laughing with your friends. Lot of us would fall for it too, once or twice, because sometimes it paid off and got you out of there. Well, this big Tiger made the mistake of playing that game with one of my sisters, then coming back afterwards."
"Did he survive?" Marie asked with a half-serious tone.
"Yeah," Jake nodded. "Even a sealed record isn't enough to cover up that kind of damage when you try to go Enforcer."
"That was a different case, and a different sister," Chance said seriously. "That guy didn't play by the rules; used 'nip, the strong stuff, almost got her hooked. The guy I was thinking of just found out that there can be a bad side to slumming - while he was with one of the girls from the crew, we stripped his car, hid his clothes, and we sent pictures to some of the names in his little black book... his wife was particularly irritated," Chance chuckled.
"I'd forgotten about that one," Jake laughed lightly along with Marie.
"I like your sense of poetic justice," Marie grinned at him.
"Yeah, well, we were all pretty much used to that sort of thing happening ... they just usually had the sense to steer clear of the place for a few months, not to show up a week later looking for a different date," Chance chuckled. "Really, we were doing him a favor - might've been an expensive lesson, but he lived through it. So, Jake, you have any from before the Academy for us that I haven't heard for a while?" He grinned.
"Well, there was the time I snuck a few mini-cams into the rooms of a some particularly annoying girls and distributed the results around campus," Jake blushed despite his wide grin. "That was fun."
"Oh really?" Marie asked, grinning back. "First off, you did something like that, and second, what were the results?"
"Yes, I did. I'm quite capable of being devious and vindictive when I have reason," he tried to keep a strait face despite the grin plastered there. "Those three, and their lovers, got serious cat-calls for the rest of the year. Fair payback for picking on my friends. I wasn't even a suspect, they'd pissed off so many people capable of it."
"What he's not saying was that he was a target too," Chance nuzzled him. "He just only started to care when they hurt his friends."
"Ugh - lemme guess, 'how long do you think it'll take me to convince him I really want to go out with him so I can dump his ass'?" Marie guessed, shaking her head. "Hated it when people tried playing those games, even if I wasn't on the receiving end too much."
"Pretty good summary," Jake nodded. "So did you do any other wacky things?"
"Whose standards?" She giggled. "And did it have to be intentional? Cindy and I managed to put together a tape we called 'Junior Prom Gone Wild' back when we were in high school... that tape had enough blackmail material for years on it," she snickered. "The school had its own cameras, but Cindy decided she wanted to 'borrow' some of her dad's and put them up to watch some of the strategic makeout spots, all hooked up to timers so they'd catch the entire prom and a few hours afterwards. I think my favorite was the one out behind the bleachers, that caught one of the cheerleaders with her boyfriend... and his dog."
Jake began to snicker, and Chance just roared in laughter.
"Anyone who's still around?" Chance asked gleefully.
"Mmm... I think that Lilly is working in chemistry," Marie giggled. "Have to ask Cindy to be sure though, she keeps track of those sort of things better. Last I heard, there were maybe three copies of the tape out there yet... one of them is probably buried around here somewhere," she said, nodding around the room. "Cindy's probably got another one, of course... not sure who had the third, but most of them got destroyed as the 'stars' found out about 'em."
"So, this Lilly," Chance grinned mischievously. "Does she still have a taste for furry friends?"
"I have no clue," Marie snickered. "She swears it was all her boyfriend's idea, but I've always figured it took two... or three, in that case."
Chance licked his whiskers back. "I think I'll have to invest the time in getting to know this girl. See if she still likes it doggy style."
"You are such a brat," Jake batted his ears playfully.
"Hey, at least I'm not a total pervert," Chance smirked.
"Yeah, you'd have to invite Lojack along before you hit that point," Marie snickered. "Though, somehow, I suspect you just weren't going to say that part out loud."
"I plead the fifth," Chance rumbled, leaning over to kiss her. "Mmm... so, is the sudden streak of dirty stories a hint that you'd like us to quit talking and get back to something else?"
"Well, you two have gotten off more than I have tonight," she purred, returning Chance's kiss, then leaning over to give Jake a more heated one.
He slid his hand between her legs and played his fingers along the slit of her sex lightly. "There's plenty of room for you on my lap."
"Wondered how long you'd take to make the invitation," she purred, sliding up to the two toms. Chance grunting as her weight was added to Jake's on his lap, but there was no real objection to how much deeper it pushed him into his mate.
She kissed Jake heatedly, wrapping her arms around him and shifted forward to slide his shaft up into her sex with a low moan.
"I always have loved a Jake sandwich," Chance kissed her over Jake's shoulder and began to thrust up. He grinned when Jake gasped a cry of wordless pleasure and pulled Marie hard against his chest. "Oh yeah, it's going to be good tonight."
Taggart glanced at the four puppies watching him again. He was packing carefully for a very special Gigantopithecus Americanus, or whatever variants survived in the Fairylands. They hadn't made a peep since he'd gotten out his backpack, but it wasn't hard to tell that they were all uneasy.
"Well, what's wrong?" He asked them, trying to keep the irritability he'd felt since Lojack and Ress had locked him in his own cage out of his voice.
"Taggart angry," Mina said, looking up. "You leave."
"No leave," Zack whimpered in protest.
"Not leaving for long," he promised them. "Not if I can help it. You'll be taken good care of," he promised, kneeling down and reaching out to scratch Zack between the ears. He didn't particularly want to leave them behind, but he knew that Jo would kill him if he didn't.
"Jo hate us," Jessie told him bluntly.
"She doesn't hate you," he sighed. "She just... has issues with a few things. Besides, she's not going to be the one taking care of you; you'll be staying with Aunt Marie for a few days while I'm gone."
"Marie's mates too?" Terra yipped in a bit of honest excitement.
"At least some of the time," Taggart nodded. "Now, I might be gone longer than I expect to be; if I am, they'll still keep an eye on you, and I will be back. Just go easy on Chien," he winked.
"Pack be good," Terra assured him. "Not hurt Chien."
"Pack stay here?" Jessie asked him.
"Unless I'm gone longer than I expect to be," he nodded. "You'll get regular visits from Aunt Marie and her mates."
"Good hunt," Jessie barked as he went back to careful packing under the watch of all four pups.
He wasn't just packing the usual supplies this time. He was making sure to be ready for where he was going; packing things that he'd found were supposed to have particular effects in the fairy realm. Some iron nails... sea salt... a number of relatively small trinkets he could probably use for trade, to get information about where he'd find his quarry. A spare shirt, one he could comfortably wear inside out, was the last touch before he zipped up his bag.
"Be good, you guys," he said, giving each of them one last scratching and found that they each wanted to lick him profusely in the process. Soft whines that didn't really translate to words other than a mixture of 'do well' and 'hurry back' with a general sense of well-wishes.
"I'll be back as soon as I can," he reassured them, shouldering his bag and making it to the door before their wish to see him not leave got the better of him despite the humiliation of everyone else talking behind his back.
There were days he truly hated humanity.
Of course, he had to admit that he hated Lojack even more right now. Hell, about half the reason he was taking his tranquilizer rifle out now was because if he didn't, it'd be the sniper rifle after that mutt. He didn't think that would go over too well with the few people who had any shred of respect left for him, Jo in particular. Her respect he couldn't stand to loose, not after everything that had happened.
The pups saw him to the front door, but politely stayed inside and didn't crowd him like they were trying to get out. He didn't need the translator to know they weren't happy though.
He closed the door, headed out to the truck and climbed in to start it up for the drive to the thicket where most the resident Fey population had taken up residence until they could get home. The fey still wouldn't come without a hundred yards of his house, thanks to the pups and Jo. Hopefully they'd be willing to show him the way, at least ... maybe know somebody he could talk to.
Honestly, he'd much rather have a guest coming back with him than a prisoner or body. That would be the crowning accomplishment of any cryptozoologist's career.
The drive disappeared in thoughts of what the various ape-men around the world might be there. By the mythologies, most of them might be magical enough to have ended up on the other side. By his beliefs, only a handful were likely to be.
Still, he only needed a handful, really. And even if he was wrong, it hardly mattered in the end. One of the beautiful things about his line of work - even if you were proven hideously wrong, you'd still made an incredible discovery.
With that thought he pulled to a stop in a spot where he could leave his truck for a few weeks without grief if need be and got out to travel the rest of the way on foot.
He looked around, trying to remember exactly where they'd left the house when they'd moved it. It wasn't too hard to spot - the animals and vegetation in the area were already responding well to their new neighbor, rabbits and deer becoming more common and docile, birds singing more. Normally, they'd have been taught the error of their way by predators, even in Eureka... but for whatever reason, the predators were a minor influence around the fey.
"Hello, Taggart," Cyrilista greeted him warmly.
"Hello," he smiled, looking up at her. "So... are you the one who'll be leading the way, or just coming to see us off?"
"I will lead you as best I can," she told him. "You did save me from the monsters."
"They're getting better about recognizing things they shouldn't go after," he offered. "So, is there a good spot near here, for this time of the year?"
"Not that we can open, but there is a weak spot nearby," she nodded and fluttered away, leading him deep into the woods that held no fear and few secrets for him.
"That's the main thing I'm after," he said easily, following her at a brisk walk. "I've got some ideas of my own for how to get through."
"Just yourself, or a way we can come?" she was suddenly much more interested in him.
"I might be able to take you through with me... hoping I can," he admitted. "Be good to have somebody there who knows the customs better than I do. I've been talking to one of the physics geeks, he had a few ideas that might help me get through in the right place."
"What ideas?" a light, cheerful male voice asked from near his ear.
Taggart glanced over at the other fey approaching.
"Well, according to a lot of stories, it was usually minstrels or musical sorts who managed to get through... he had some ideas about using music or vibrations to weaken the barrier enough to slip through into your world."
They seemed to consider it, their voices all but inaudible to him.
"It is more likely it was because they could see beyond the obvious. It is the first step in recognizing magic," a female with huge, blue-black iridescent wings answered. "Once you accept that magic is real, the barrier weakens for you."
"Well, that might do the trick too," he mused. "Either way, I'm going to get through eventually."
"Falling asleep in the right place at the right time is the easiest way for a human to get across," Cyrilista offered.
"I'll try the sound machine first, I think," he chuckled slightly as they reached the ring. "I'd rather not be asleep and vulnerable on the other side, not knowing what's there."
"I won't let you be hurt while you sleep," Cyrilista promised him to a few murmurs from her kin.
"I'll still try this first ... sleep will probably come later. If it helps, I definitely believe that this is possible ... wouldn't be doing this if I didn't," he offered.
"You could not see us if you did not have the ability to believe," she told him. "Here," she motioned to a relatively non-descript bit of grass by a tree.
"Right," he nodded, setting up the small resonating device and starting it going before settling down in the circle. "So... can any of you sense anything?" He asked, looking around the gathered fey, all hopeful for a way home.
"It's not working," Cyrilista told him. "Bad noise too."
"Figured it was worth a shot," he shrugged slightly, turning it off. "So... any other ideas, before I try taking a nap?"
"Since you don't have any trained magical ability, no," Cyrilista shook her head and lighted on a branch just above sitting head level for him.
"Figures," he sighed, shaking his head and trying to relax. It wasn't that he thought it would be hard to sleep out here - he was used to much worse conditions. But he was keyed up for a hunt... that was harder to sleep through.
But still, he was going to try.
"Wait ... trained magical ability?" he looked up at Cyrilista with a frown.
"You have a faint talent, but you are not trained," she elaborated. "A trained magic-user can just shred the barrier in places like this with a thought."
"Things like that common around here?" He asked her curiously, his mind distracted by the possible implications.
"Of who we have met, almost everyone has some level of talent, a few are strong enough an old-time wizard would have considered taking one as an apprentice," the Blue Morpho winged woman told him. "It can not be normal for the world or there would not be a divide."
"It isn't," he said easily. "Eureka might be a place of science, but if there's anywhere in the technological world that would accept magic, it's here... they just probably wouldn't call it that."
"Until it does, the talent here will remain unrealized and unused," she said a bit huffily.
"Are the semantics that crucial to it?" He sighed, shaking his head. "You're not going to convince scientists to just start talking about magic, but to accept that it can do what it's supposed to do ... that's more likely."
"Occasionally," Cyrilista nodded. "It is more about the mindset, Taggart. By refusing to call it what it is when they know what it is, they deny its fundamental nature. Language is a very powerful thing when it is used to define something."
"From what I understand, magic as you define it is changing reality by wanting to change it. Right? That's not how it's usually defined around here, at least not by most people. The word has a different meaning here than it does for you."
"So what does it mean here and now?" Cyrilista asked.
"It varies from one person to the next, but usually it means... fake," he said, trying to find a way to put it into words. "Go around Eureka, and at least nine out of ten people have seen so-called magic that was nothing more than smoke and mirrors, sometimes that was presented as the real thing. Magic means something that isn't real, that can't be real by its nature. If you approach them about what it is, changing the world through force of will, you'll get a lot more respect for that, particularly if you're talking to the Quantum Physics geeks."
"We generally don't want to try," she told him. "We are much safer for your world being separated."
"Fair enough. Though with what's been happening lately, somebody might manage to force a bridge between the two, intentionally or otherwise, pretty soon. Just a heads-up for you all."
"When they do, they will find a world that is quite willing and able to defend itself," Cyrilista warned him quietly. "No human has gotten the upper hand over the enchanted. Your weapons and armor are still not sufficient to challenge magic yet."
"For what it's worth, in Eureka we wouldn't be trying to unless we had to defend ourselves. This is just for insurance," he explained, patting his rifle.
"We know that is true of you," she told him. "Or you would never be here with us. It is not true for all your kind, just like not all Fey are as friendly as we are."
"That much I've gathered," he nodded slightly. "Any way to tell if some of them have come through to here?"
"Sometimes," she nodded. "We have not found any since we arrived."
"Good to hear," he mused, stretching out. "I suppose I should try and get to sleep then... wake me up when we get through, if you can?"
"I will," Cyrilista promised.
Taggart woke up some time later to a touch that was distinctly more personal than anybody but Jo had a right to these days.
"I'm actually going to hope that you're not Cyrilista," he grumbled before shifting to sit up and open his eyes.
"No," a sweet smile on pale skin and framed by auburn locks greeted him. "I am Tryla, and you are quite handsome."
"I'm also quite taken," he pointed out, shifting to move away from her and stand up and quickly zipped his pants back up. "I've already got a mate."
"Who is not here," she said with a soft, pouty smile. "I can pleasure you while you are here."
"You do realize that I'm a human," he pointed out, backing away, picking up his gear. This was starting to raise the hairs on the back of his neck... a sign that he'd learned long ago usually meant Something Wasn't Right.
"Of course," she looked at him in a mixture of surprise and hurt. "I meant no offense."
"I'm sure you didn't," he agreed. And he was - offense wasn't what he was picking up from her. "I just don't think this is a particularly good idea, that's all."
"What is wrong with taking pleasure when it is offered?" she asked him in honest confusion and took a step forward.
"When I get back, my mate'd kill me, for one," he said dryly. "For another... I don't know much about the fey, but I know a bit. I'm going to be very careful about taking offers that I don't necessarily understand very well."
She jerked back as if he'd slapped her and stared at him with wide open eyes. "I give you my word, I mean no harm."
"Right," he nodded slightly, though he still wasn't entirely convinced. Maybe not intentionally, but there was no telling what he might be agreeing to that was covered under 'no harm.' "Look... it looks like my guide either didn't come through with me, or she took off somewhere. I don't know much about this world, but I'm not what you'd call a naturally trusting soul. No offense; I'd be this paranoid about anybody."
"You are here in search of something?" she nodded, seeming to accept his statement for what it was. She didn't conceal her disappointment, but she didn't seem to be upset either.
Just as well. He didn't really want to find out if tranqs worked on fairies just yet.
"Yeah, I am," he nodded. "Have you ever heard of Sasquatch, Yeti, Wendigo?" He asked, picking out a few other names that might be handy if she hadn't.
"The hairy humans," she nodded. "Yes, I know of them. They are not the kind of company I prefer."
"Maybe not, but they're the kind I'm looking for," he said seriously. "Would you be able to lead me towards some of them?"
"Well, yes," she thought about it. "What are you willing to trade for it?"
"What types of things are you interested in?" He asked, slinging his pack around to go through his trade goods.
"Company mostly, but I would settle for something pretty to put in my hair," she fluffed it to show off the handful of crystalline and gold baubles tied into the strands.
"Depending on the type of company, I can do both," he said, pulling out an intricately beaded hairpin of a sort that had often served him well when exploring more primitive areas. "Would something like this work?" He asked, opening up the case that protected it, and the carefully designed butterfly of synthesized emerald and amethyst that topped it off.
"Oh my," she brightened considerably. "You came well-prepared to barter here. I will lead you to the hairy humans for that."
"I try to," he chuckled slightly. "I've always found that it's helpful to assume something's worth less than it actually is. And that's a deal," he said easily, putting it back in the box and handing it over.
The fact that it had only cost him two days waiting for the stones and ten dollars in the rest of the supplies didn't hurt either. Of course, he rather doubted that anybody around here would care about more than whether or not the stone was real and looked good. He wasn't about to lie if asked directly what they were, but she hadn't asked and was clearly pleased with her new acquisition as it was set in a very prominent place on top of her head with a bit of hair through it.
"Come, it is several days to where the nearest of them live," she told him brightly.
"Lead the way," he said with a nod, going to follow her. He'd hoped quite a bit that he'd be able to get in and out without any serious delays... one of the reasons he'd really wanted to avoid getting here by sleeping. As it was, he'd probably been here at least four years before she'd woken him up, and it would be decades or even centuries before he got back with his quarry if she was right.
It was enough to make him seriously wonder about Jo's claims that she, and the pups by extension, were nearly immortal short of incredible violence. They may well be the only thing left of the world he knew by the time he got back.
"You are thoughtful," Tryla said.
"I'd been hoping to get back somewhat sooner than it looks like I will," he explained. "Or at least to have a chance at it."
Eureka Kats 9.99: Building a Legacy
NC-17 for M/M
Het Level is Medium Slash Level is Slash Smut Level is Very Low Femslash Level is None Herm Level is None
59 KB, Story is Complete, Series is Finished
Written May 19, 2007 by Rauhnee Ranshanka and Karl Wolfemann
Setting: Eureka, SWAT Kats
Primary Races: Human, Kat, Were
Contents: Furry. Het (M/F). Slash (M/M). Fantasy
Pairings: Chance Furlong/Jake Clawson/Marie Moreau, Jake Clawson/Lurin Bengal, Jo Lupo/Jim Taggart, others
Blurb: While the puppies continue to hone their skills at movement, the felines trade stories of their youth and Taggart heads off on the hunt of a lifetime.
Disclaimer: All things taken directly from the sources listed under 'Fandoms' belong to the owners of those shows. No harm is intended and we're definitely not making any money. Now, the things we created are ours, and if you see 'Non-FanFic' up there, it's probably all ours.
Page Hit Count from June 2, 2007