"Revenge Squad" by John Alan Davidson
Chapter 8 (A long one)
"This Kyle person sounds like a real nut case," said Monterey.
"How come you never mentioned anything of this before Chip?" asked Gadget.
"Well I never thought I would hear anything from Kyle again. I just thought that was all in the past and there was no need to mention it."
"But, he is back, and it sounds like he has a serious grudge with you and the rest of us."
"But that doesnt fit Kyles MO I grew up with him and it was never his style to go after friends of his enemies. I think there might be more to this than just Kyle. He left that note on the door as a direct threat to me. I cant figure out why he would want to frame the Rangers when Im the one he wants to get."
"Well Chippo, you said it yourself hes a dangerous psychopath now. Does he need a reason?" piped in Monterey.
"Hes not stupid Monterey, everything he does is for a reason. There must be some reason he is targeting the whole team"
"Maybe hes getting paid to go after the whole team like a mercenary. You know, a little icing on the cake. He gets revenge on you and makes a little money on the side," said Dale.
"If thats true then the question is who is paying him," said Gadget
"I dont think hes getting paid, Kyle was never one that wanted money."
"But you were saying how he was stealing when he was younger."
"He was but it wasnt for the money he did it for the thrill."
"Well maybe hes doing this for a thrill too!"
"I dont know. Kyle has changed a lot through the years. I dont know what to expect from him," Chip leaned back in his chair and sighed. "I still cant believe how much I misjudged him."
"Well Chip, people do change. Maybe it was so gradual that you did not notice," Gadget said.
"Well I just hope I dont misjudge him again."
"Hey Chip, what does this Kyle fellow even look like?" asked Dale.
"Hold on. Ill be right back," Chip left the room and went upstairs to the storage room. He opened up a dusty trunk in the corner and pulled out a yearbook. He carried it downstairs to where the other Rangers were sitting. Dale quickly got up and took the yearbook out of Chips hands he quickly started to flip through it.
"Malan Mamar Here it is Maplewood Gee Chip you sure looked funny!" Dale said giggling.
"Very funny Dale. Here let me see that."
Chip took the yearbook from a still giggling Dale. Chip flipped through it until he found the page he wanted. He sat the book on the table and pushed it over to the other Rangers and pointed to a picture. The picture was off a younger version of Kyle without the scar.
"So thats what he looks like," said Monterey.
"He doesnt look like a psycho," said Dale.
"Well this picture is out of date Dale. He has probably changed his appearance to reflect his new mindset," said Gadget.
"Now what do we do?" asked Monterey
"We go out and try to track Kyle down," answered Chip.
"But what about what the merchants said about us attacking them?" asked Gadget.
"I know that if we find Kyle we will find out who attacked those merchants. I know that somehow he has to be connected with it."
"Do you have any ideas where we should begin to look?" asked Monterey.
"I would like to go and look at the bank, but I have the feeling that we would receive a similar reception as we received here. But we still have to check it out anyway."
"Well, we can send someone else to go to the bank," said Gadget.
"Great idea Gadget, Dale you go and ask Foxglove if she will go to the bank and check it out for us."
"What if she says no?" said Dale trying to get out of the task.
"Trust me pally. She will if you ask her," quipped Monterey
"Oh all right," Dale left and went in search of the young bat.
"What will we do Chip?" asked Gadget.
"Well since Kyle was last held at Strykers island, I thought that is where we should head to next."
"Well lets go then," said Monterey.
They were just about to head for the Rangerwing when Erick, who had entered through the front door, stopped them. He was dressed in a S.W.A.T. team style of vest. He held in his hand what looked like a hi-tech weapon. "Rescue Rangers, in the name of the Agency, I am placing you under arrest!"
"The Rangers just stood there staring at him in shock. Chip was the first to step forward. "Erick you have to believe me we didnt do any of those things. Someone is trying to frame us."
Erick lowered his weapon and holstered it to his vest. "I do believe you, but the Agency doesnt. And you probably have the same suspicions about this as I do. That is why I will just forget this whole encounter took place."
"But wouldnt you be putting yourself in danger?" asked Chip.
"No, I will just inform my superiors that I was to late and that you were gone before I got here."
"Then why did you pull that gun on us? And say you were going to arrest us," asked Monterey.
"That was just a formality. Now Chip, I cant hold of the Agency for much longer. And also I would love to help you even more but you have to understand that my hands are tied."
"Thanks Erick," said Chip as he and the rest of the Rangers headed for the hanger.
The Rescue Rangers boarded the Rangerwing and took off towards Strykers island. During the trip Chip leafed through his yearbook reliving memories.
"So you and this Kyle were pretty close?" asked Gadget
"Well we grew up together and were friends all throughout school. We were very close. I keep wondering why I hadnt noticed anything earlier. I keep thinking maybe if I had noticed a change that I could have stopped him from committing those thefts in the first place. Maybe things would have turned out different."
"You cant go through life second guessing your decisions Chip. Kyle made those choices on his own. You shouldnt feel responsible for what happened."
"I guess youre right Gadget."
"Good. Im glad that you realize that you cant go blaming yourself for other people decisions. Now tell me what you were like when you were younger. You and Dale never talk about your past before the Rescue Rangers much."
"Well in some aspects I have changed a lot, but in others I have stayed the same. It seemed that every year I would be embarrassed by the way I thought and acted the previous year. When I got out on my own my views and perceptions of things changed radically. Even still new experiences change the way I look at things. Im not saying I went through a major personality change. I just grew, matured, and realized that there are many other ways to look at life. I was really naïve at one point I thought I knew it all and that I had the world completely understood. But I know one thing for certain that being a Rescue Ranger is what I want to do with me life that. I know that for a fact. *And the fact that I love you!* Chip though silently to himself.
"Well its good that you realize that Chip. All people change with new experiences. Kyles experiences drove him to a life of crime. From our past experiences we can make more wise and sound decisions in the future."
"I just hope I can make the right decision when dealing with Kyle the second time around."
"Dont worry Chip this time you wont be dealing with him alone. Were your friends and teammates. Well be right at your side.
"Thanks Gadget. Im feeling much better already."
"Good. Well there it is," She said pointing to an Island of the coast "Strykers Island home of the criminally insane. Human and Animal."
Just as Gadget said Strykers island was home to criminally insane of both the human and animal worlds. One of the human inmates just happened to be Professor Norton Nimnul, who was just put there after his latest scheme failed due to the Rescue Rangers. The Animal section was located directly under the Human section. The only entrance to the section they wanted was a storm grate. Gadget landed the Rangerwing outside of the entrance. They disembarked and walked into the storm grate. Once inside they were stopped by a large mouse by they way he was dressed they knew he was a guard.
"Hello! Were the Rescue Rangers. We would like to speak with somebody in charge," said Chip
"Ive heard of you guys youre responsible for putting a few of our guests here. Ill contact Warden Sawyer immediately and tell her youre here." The guard walked to an intercom and contacted the warden. A few minutes later a female Chipmunk greeted the Rescue Rangers. She looked about to be in her late 50s. Even though she was old, she held an air around her that showed she was not one to be trifled with.
"You must be the Rescue Rangers. It is a great pleasure to meet you," she said, extending her hand to each of them. "What brings you here to my little island?"
"We need information on one of your recent inmates," said Gadget.
"And who do you need information on?" she asked.
"Kyle Laurel," said Chip rather plainly.
"Laurel," said Sawyer with an air of disgust. "He just recently broke out of here. First successful break out we ever had. Follow me, I will show you his cell. I will also sent for his prison record," she led them through the hallways passing several heavy metal doors and security checkpoints as they proceeded.
"Crickey! How could anybody break out of this place?" asked Monterey.
"This isnt even the maximum security block. Thats where we held Kyle. The security there was supposedly air tight," she explained as she led them through a few more corridors before coming to a stop in front of a large titanium door. She typed a code into the keypad on the door and it automatically slid open. Inside was a large room. In the center of the room was a large semicircle control panel with two chairs at it. At the far end of the room were two cells. Each one had a large glass window facing the control panel.
"These two cells are reserved for the real nut jobs. Kyle was kept in the cell to the right. We are able to monitor all action of the prisoner from this control panel. We also have total control of each cell with it. The only way in or out of the cell is the window, which doubles as a door. They can be raised or lowered from this panel but only with a special access code."
"Why the glass windows?" asked Gadget
"We need to be able to keep an eye on the prisoners at all times. Steel bars obscure the view of the prisoners. They can also be easily cut. This glass is triple reinforced and is three inches thick. The cell walls themselves are buried deeply in a granite deposit.
"If the security is supposed to be so tight. How did Kyle escape?" asked Monterey.
"Well he was able to figure out the codes and he override the security system."
"How did he do that?" questioned Chip.
"Were still not sure. All that we know is that one the day he escaped he was able to trick the guard into coming close to the cell. As soon as the guard got up to the cell the door popped right open, Kyle jumped out, knocked the guard out, took his passkeys, and was somehow able to bring down the entire security net. Without the security systems operational he easily escaped "
"Can we have a look in the cell?" Monterey asked.
"By all means, go ahead," She answered as she walked to the control panel and typed in the command code. The door of Kyles cell opened up. The Rangers walked over to the cell and looked inside. On the floor papers were spread out. Chip walked over and picked one up. It was a page from a scientific journal. He scanned the page from top to bottom, looking for something to stand out. Halfway down the page he did find something.
"Here Dr. Teng is mentioned again!"
"The same Dr. Teng from S.T.A.R. labs?" Gadget asked.
"The exact same one."
"Golly! That means that Kyle is connected to the S.T.A.R. labs robbery."
"At least we have a few more pieces of the puzzle, but we still need more information."
"Maybe this can help," said Warden Sawyer. She handed Chip a folder. "This is Kyles prison record. Maybe you can find something useful there."
"Thank you Warden," said Chip politely.
"We should be getting back to Headquarters. Maybe Dale and Foxglove have found something," said Monterey
"Good idea. Lets go. Thanks for the help Warden."
"Good luck finding Kyle. Were looking forward to getting him back," the Warden said with a grin. For some reason unknown to him, Chip got an uneasy feeling when she said that. He ignored it and they left.
The Rescue Rangers returned to their tree in the park to find Dale and Foxglove waiting for them inside. Dale looked relieved to see them back. He quickly got off the couch and away from Foxgloves flirtatious advances.
"About time you guys got back," Dale snapped.
"Why? You didnt appreciate your quality time with Foxglove?" said Chip mischievously.
Dale turned his back and made a "Harumph" like sound.
Gadget walked over to Foxglove and sat down next to her. "So Foxy, did you find anything at the bank?"
"I found plenty!" Foxglove stated matter of factly and handed Gadget a small plastic bag with a silverish liquid metal inside. "I found this on the bank vault door, which by the way, was ripped completely off of its hinges. I also have this." She then handed Gadget a grainy security photo that clearly showed the Rescue Rangers robbing the bank.
"Golly! It is US!"
She handed the picture to the other Rescue Rangers. Their reaction to the photo was very similar.
"What about the liquid? Gadget, can you tell us anything about it?" asked Dale.
"Not until I examine it, which I will do right now," answered the resident genius. Taking the bag with the liquid in her arms, she went to her workshop and closed the door.
"Well what do we do in the meantime?" asked Dale.
Chip held up Kyles prison record and the file form S.T.A.R. "We do some research, and I dont mean comic books."
Chapter 9 (A short one)
"You incompetent fool!" Kyle shouted shoving his nose into Bubbles face. You lost some of the bio-metal during the bank robbery!"
"Hey, it wasnt my fault. Anyway, it was just a little bit. Not enough to affect the clone," Bubbles shrugged as if he couldnt care less.
"It doesnt matter how much you lost! I specifically told you to avoid electrical currents! It shorts out the clones stability! When you ripped that door open you brushed up against an exposed power line! If the Rangers find the metal they might be able to figure out our little scheme!"
"Calm yourself Kyle," purred Fat Cat. "We should not be arguing amongst ourselves. The Rescue Rangers are our enemies remember?"
"But what if they do find the metal? It could cause trouble!"
"If they do, they do there is nothing we can do about it. It isnt like they have long to live anyway. So just forget about it."
"OK, but I do not want any more screw ups from Bubbles here!" having said that. Kyle spun around and went into the connecting room.
"I dont know how much longer I can put up with him." grumbled Bubbles.
"Hes psychotic! Have you ever got him to tell you about his time with Intergang? He did stuff even I get squeamish about," said Capone
"Where did you find this guy anyway?" asked Desa'rae.
"He came to me. One day when I arrived at my office, I found him just sitting there at my desk. I was going to have my idiotic henchmen throw him out and beat him up. But he had already taken them out and tied them up! Then he just told me his plan to get rid of the Rescue Rangers. I agreed and contacted the rest of you."
"I just cant wait to get this over with so I dont have to be around him anymore. He gives me the creeps," said Desarae.
"Dont worry. It will be over soon enough. By this time tomorrow the Rescue Rangers will be no more."
The rooms rang with the villainous laughter that they were all so good at.
"Chip, this liquid metal that Foxglove found is very similar to the bio-metal that was stolen from S.T.A.R. labs.
"What makes you say that Gadget?"
"I compared the results of my tests to the bio-metal specifications in the S.T.A.R. reports. They were very similar in every way. Except that this sample is deactivated.
"It seems that the bio-metal is always in an active state, thats why it can be programmed to mimic DNA. But this sample is not active. In simpler terms, it is dead."
"That would mean OH MY!"
"I thought the same way Chip. Someone has made Clones of the Rescue Rangers."
"And that someone is Kyle. So now we know who is behind the attack. And his reason for wanting to frame the Rescue Rangers.
"Probably to ruin our reputation for helping others."
"Yeah. Now all we have to do is figure out a way to stop these clones before they do anymore damage. You said it was deactivated. Do you know how?"
"Well the liquid had high counts of charged ions in it."
"Charged ions? Doesnt that have something to do with electricity?"
"Right on the money Chip. It seems that the bio-metal cannot stay functional if it is separated form the main source. So once this sample was separated, it deactivated. And an electrical charge could cause a piece of the bio-metal to become separated by interrupting the clones stability."
"So we could use an electrical charge to try to shut the clones down."
"We would need to be able to hit the entire clone with an electrical blast. The blast would have to hit the entire clone and the energy must be spread out evenly or be concentrated in the exact center."
"Good, we have a plan. Now all we have to do is figure out a way to track down the clones and get them near a large power source."
"How do we know they cant be reasoned with?"
"I dont know. We will have to try, of course. We are the good guys, after all," Chip said and she smiled. "Gadget, Ill get the rest of the Rangers you get the Rangerwing ready."
The Rescue Rangers meet out on the small landing pad. Foxglove had joined them. They all loaded into the Rangerwing except for Foxglove who flew next to them.
"Do you see anything Foxglove?" Dale shouted over to the bat flying alongside of the Rangerwing.
"Nothing yet cutie," She called back to him, a grin on her face. She then squinted. "Wait a minute. Whats that?" she said pointing to a speck emerging from the glare of the sun.
Out of the glare of the sun emerged the Revengewing.
"Is that what I think it is?" asked Dale.
Chip pulled out his binoculars from his bomber jacked and zoomed in on the Revengewing. "It is its our clones in an exact replica of the Rangerwing. Though this one looks a lot more aggressive," Chip said, noting the plainly visible weapons.
"What do you mean by that Chippo?" asked Monterey
As if to answer his question the Revengewing opened fire on the Rangerwing. Gadget instantly took the Rangerwing in a dive with Foxglove following to avoid getting hit
"Yikes! Were under attack!" yelled Zipper.
"Dive! Dive!" shouted Chip.
"What the heck is that thing armed with?" screamed Dale.
"I dont know, but whatever it is, its pretty nasty," Gadget said pitching the Rangerwing to one side, the blast scorched the port side.
"Theyre firing at us again, but with a different weapon," shouted Chip. The sound of bullets whizzing past the Rangerwing could be heard. A few of the shots connected, leaving holes in the wings and hull.
"Guys! Those bullets have damaged the flaps and the airilons! I dont know how much longer I can keep the Rangerwing in the air!" Gadget informed them.
"Ill try to slow them down!" shouted Foxglove, dropping back to the Revengewing.
"Wait Foxglove!" shouted Dale.
Foxglove pitched to the right and left avoiding the bullets. She dropped back further until she was flying below the Revengewing where she could hear the Clones conversation"
"Where did she go?" she recognized the voice as being Dales.
"How come no one informed me of the Bat?" she heard Zipper squeak.
"I did not take her into consideration," she recognized Chips voice.
"You did not provide us with accurate information Fat Cat!" she heard Zipper squeak again. Then she realized that Zipper refereed to the Chip clone as Fat Cat. She knew she had to inform the rest of the Rangers of this turn of events. She flew forward again to the Rangerwing. She was just about to reach the side of the Rangerwing when she was hit on her right wing by an energy blast.
"Yarrghh!!!" she cried out in pain.
"FOXGLOVE!" Shouted Dale. He quickly leaned over the edge of the Rangerwing and caught a hold of Foxgloves left wing. He caught her and Monterey helped pull her into the Rangerwing.
"Are you O.K.?" he asked.
"I I...Guess. Im just a little shaken."
"How bad are you hurt?"
"I dont know. My wing is really sore, but it doesnt seem hurt real bad."
"Youre lucky that shot just clipped you." said Monterey.
Foxglove turned back to Dale "You saved me!"
"Im a Rescue Ranger, its my job!" said Dale, trying to keep her from making a big deal about it.
"Well thanks anyway," she said, wrapping her good wing around him and embracing him.
"I hate to interrupt this sentimental moment, but what about them?" Zipper said pointing to the Revengewing gaining on them."
"I cant go any faster and I dont think I can dodge any more blasts!" yelled Gadget.
"Well we have do something! Theyre gaining on us!" said Monterey.
Just then a missile impacted on the aft side of the Rangerwing, destroying the batteries. The blast threw the rear passengers ahead in their seats and demolished the entire rear end of the Rangerwing. The Rangerwing pitched into a dive, black smoke billowing from the rear.
"Everybody strap in the emergency harnesses," Gadget shouted. She reached down alongside her seat and opened up a panel. Inside was a lever marked with black and yellow stripes. The word EJECT was stenciled above it. "I never thought we would have to use this. Hang on!" she yelled over the screaming wind and pulled the lever.
The two front seats and the rear seat ejected a good 10 feet from the falling Rangerwing. After a few seconds of free fall the parachutes deployed. The Revengewing paid no attention to them but continued after the falling Rangerwing, continuing to hammer it with a barrage of weapons fire. After a few more missile hits the entire Rangerwing exploded in a fiery ball of flames. The Revengewing then just simply took off in the opposite direction, leaving the Rescue Rangers to continue their descent to the earth.
"Is everybody OK?" Chip shouted over to the others.
They nodded that they were OK and they spent the rest of their descent is silence admiring the view. After a few minutes they all landed. Luckily they landed in the park, not in the middle of a street. The Rangers unbelted themselves and got into a group to discuss what had just happened.
"I wonder why the just left us? We were sitting ducks up there," said Dale.
"Maybe they didnt notice us," suggested Monterey.
"They let us go on purpose," said Chip.
"Now why would they go through all the trouble of destroying the Rangerwing if they were to just let us get away?" asked Dale.
"They were probably just trying to scare us."
"Or maybe they wanted to keep us from having any type of aerial travel." said Gadget.
Foxglove then remembered what she had heard on the Revengewing. "One of the clones called the other Fat Cat!"
"Fat Cat?" said Dale. "What does Fat Cat have to do with Kyle?"
"Wait a minute! Gadget could the clones be controlled externally. Like through something of remote control?" asked Chip.
"Maybe. Why do you ask Chip?"
"I just had a thought. Since one of the clones was referred to as Fat Cat, I though that Fat Cat might be controlling one of the clones."
"That would mean that Fat Cat is working with Kyle. And since there are three other clones that could mean some of our other adversaries might be working together."
"Crikey! A team made up of our enemies. If that is true, we probably know who the front-runners for such a team would be," said Monterey.
"Oh Man, this is heavy," said Dale.
"Now what do we do?" asked Foxglove.
"We get back to headquarters and have a closer look at the whats left of the Rangerwing. Then well worry about the clones," said Gadget.
The Revengewing had returned to the Revenge Squad headquarters in Mount Curtiss. The members were now disengaged from the clones and were sitting around the table discussing what had just happened.
"I say we should have finished them off when we had the chance!" said Capone.
"All in good time. Whats the point in destroying them in one blow? Why not scare them first? Destroy all that they have worked for," said Fat Cat.
"But still, we should have taken at least one of them out!"
"Well if someone didnt miss we could have killed that Bat," sneered Kyle.
"Foxglove Kyle, she does have a name."
"Still, if you had not missed her, we would have taken her out. That would have put a damper on their spirits."
"I missed, we all make mistakes."
"If I had the chance to work the weapons I would not have missed," said Bubbles.
"Dont worry, all good thing come to those who wait. Youll get your chance Bubbles."
"Good, I cant wait to put that inventor in her place."
"What is that supposed to mean?" asked Desa'rae.
"Dont get your underwear in a bunch. I was simply making a statement."
"Well just watch your mouth!"
"Or what will you do frenchie?!? I dont even know why youre a member of this team. Once we do get into actually battle with the Rescue Rangers you will fold like a card table. A typical French person, er mouse."
Desarae got very angry at Bubbles statement and reached across the table to strangle him. Kyle grabbed her by the shoulder and pulled her back into her seat.
"Please, Bubbles have some respect for the lady," said Fat Cat
"She started it!"
"Frankly Bubbles, I dont give a damn! We shouldnt be fighting amongst ourselves. We may have our differences but we all want to accomplish the same goal."
Bubbles reluctantly stood down from his argument.
"Good. Now that that is taken care off its time to initiate the final part of the plan."
"Finally now we get to have some real fun. Those Rangers have ruined countless schemes of mine, now its pay back time," said Capone.
"As they say, revenge is a dish best served cold," quoted Kyle.
"This has been a long time in the making. Finally to be able to do whatever I want and not have to worry about the Rescue Rangers ruining my plans," said Fat Cat. The large cat produced a bottle of champagne from a storage bin beneath the table. He also took out five wineglasses and poured the champagne into them. He gave a glass to each member of the Squad. Lifting his glass in the air he made a toast. "I drink to the general joy of the whole table," he said in a toast
The other members returned the toast and they drank.
Chapter 12 (another long one)
The Rescue Rangers were seated at the living room table. Foxglove had now joined them. Her injured wing was in a sling. They were discussing the new turn of events in there most recent adventure.
"Now we not only have to deal with our clones, but we also have to deal with a team of our worst enemies," said Dale.
"First we have to deal with the clones," said Chip.
"And just how do we do that?" asked Monterey.
"Maybe if we can lure them to the hydroelectric plant," Gadget said, thinking aloud. We can get them into one of the turbines. That would do the trick! Or since it is a power plant, there are most likely other ways to zap the clones."
"Great idea Gadget, now we need to figure out a way to get the clones to come after us," said Chip.
"They found us last time," said Zipper
"Well I dont like the idea of just hanging around until they come after us again. There must be a way to get them to come out of hiding," said Chip.
"We should split up into two teams. One team will concentrate on leading the clones out of hiding and the other will lure them to the power plant. That should confuse our enemies since we know that they formed a team. But they do not know that we know." Said Gadget.
"Bonzer of an idea Gadget luv. I for one want to give those clones a taste of their own medicine," said Monterey
"Good. How soon can you have the Rangerplane ready Gadget?"
"Well it has been awhile since we used it. I have to get it out of storage and just run the usual tests. It shouldnt take more than half an hour," she replied.
"Good, heres the plan. Gadget, Zipper, and I will lure the clones out of hiding with the Rangermobile. Dale, you, Foxglove, and Monterey will get them to the power plant with the Rangerplane. We will meet you there."
Gadget got up and went to her workshop to get the Rangerplane ready, Monterey followed to help her get it out of storage, and the rest of the Rangers remained at the table. Within a few minutes Foxglove and Zipper got up and went to the kitchen, leaving Chip and Dale alone.
"So you and this Kyle were friends," asked Dale.
"Yes. We were friends for a long time," answered Chip sadly.
"Yeah and he turned out to be a raving lunatic," Chip smiled at him. "At least I dont have to worry about you going postal on me."
"How do you know I wont?" said Dale with a bit of humor in his voice.
"Well, even though I knew Kyle for a long time. I know you better than I ever knew him. You are the best friend I ever had or will ever have. No matter what happens, I will always be you friend." Chip walked over to Dale and hugged him. "I know sometimes I might yell or lose my temper with you, but you will always be my best friend."
"I know Chip, youll always be my best friend too," Dale said.
They separated and then just stood there for a few moments. Dale decided to break the silence.
"Gee, I wonder what Kyle would think of me?" he asked.
"Youd probably blow his mind!" laughed Chip.
"His minds already blown!" said Dale, also laughing.
"Well we better start to get ready. Gadget and Monterey should have the vehicles ready any minute now."
Chip went to see how Gadget and Monterey were doing. Dale went into the kitchen to see what Foxglove and Zipper were up to. Gadget had just finished running the tests on the Rangerplane when Chip walked in.
"Wheres Monterey?" he inquired.
"Hes outside getting a part I need."
Chip walked over to the Rangerplane and ran his hand along the side of it. "Been a while since we used the Rangerplane."
"Well when I built the Rangerwing, the Rangerplane became obsolete. The Rangerwing is superior to the Rangerplane in many ways. But the Rangerplane still has its uses.
"Well Gadget, both are wonderful inventions. Without them, the Rescue Rangers would have gone nowhere fast. Still, Im going to miss the Rangerwing. She was a great plane.
"I dont think that will be the last plane I build to be called Rangerwing. For awhile now I was thinking of refitting the Rangerwing with some new inventions. Now that it is destroyed I can rebuild from scratch, making it better than the original. I already have some rough blueprints sketched. Care to take a look?"
"Sure," said Chip
She led him over to her workbench and produces a tube out from under it. She removed the top and pulled out a couple of Blueprints. She unrolled them on the workbench for Chip to see. As far as he could see, the new Rangerwing design looked similar to the original Rangerwing.
"It looks just like the original Rangerwing," he commented.
"On the outside yes, but the engine will be twice as powerful and it will have an emergency turbo boost system which we can use in tight situations. Also, it will have a storage area for whatever equipment we will need on cases."
"Whats this?" he asked, pointing to a cutaway view. The section he was pointing to ran through the direct center of the main body of the Rangerwing.
"That is an access tube. Since the new Rangerwing will have a bigger and more powerful engine, I will need a way to get to it. Instead of taking the entire Rangerwing apart if a problem arises, I can just crawl in there and fix the problem. Also, there are back up controls there in case we ever need them. The tube will run directly under the seats."
"Thats amazing," Chip said, astonished.
"Thats not all!" Gadget loved showing off inventions, even when they were still in the blueprint stage. "The landing gear will be a removable module that can be removed and replaced with a different type of landing gear depending on the situation. We dont want a repeat of what happened at Glacier Bay."
"Youre a genius." She blushed slightly at this and he smiled. "But what about the Rangerplane? If the Rangerwing could be taken down easily, the Rangerplane wont stand a chance."
"Ive already got that taken care of. Since we know the only way we can shut down the clones is by a large electrical charge, we need a way to get them on the ground. And we need to disable that plane of theirs, so I figured out a way to kill two birds with one stone," she led him to the rear of the Rangerplane to where a small box had been attached. "In this box is a plastic resin. All they have to do is fly directly in front of the clones plane and drop it. The resin will automatically harden on the plane, making the weapons useless, and should force them to land."
"Good job Gadget! Theyll never know what hit them."
The other Rescue Rangers entered Gadgets workshop.
"Is everything ready Gadget?" asked Monterey.
"Yup, were all set to go," Gadget replied.
"Good, I cant wait to show those clones not to mess with the Rescue Rangers!" Dale said eagerly.
"Then what are we waiting for? Lets go!" said Chip.
Dale, Foxglove, and Monterey piled onto the Rangerplane. Dale and Foxglove sat in the front with Dale piloting. Monterey sat in the back, awaiting the other groups signal. They took off towards the power plant. Gadget, Chip, and Zipper went to the bottom of the tree where the Rangermobile was hidden. They loaded up and took of to lure the Clones out of hiding. Gadget took the wheel with Chip in the passenger seat. Zipper sat on the back of the rear seat.
"So how should we get the clones to show themselves?" asked Zipper.
"Well, since we know for certain that fat Cat is in the group we should try to cause some trouble at his hideout."
"Good idea Gadget. Then Fat Cats goons will contact him and he will send the clones after us."
"I still cant believe that our worst enemies actually teamed up to try to destroy us."
"Yeah, and Kyle is in the group which makes the situation worse."
"I wonder who else is in the group. We know for sure that Fat Cat and Kyle are in it.
"Just think who the most likely candidates are. Definitely Rat Capone is in it. But Nimnul cant be in it because hes in Strykers. Bubbles has a big grudge against you and the rest of the team. That leaves one position vacant.
"How do you know there are five members Chip?"
"I dont, I am just assuming since there are five of this there are five of them," answered Chip.
"What about Foxglove?"
"Well they didnt make a clone of her. I think that her showing up to help us threw a monkey wrench into their plans Gadget, once we take care of the Clones, do you have any ideas how we can track down the rogues controlling them.
"I think I might know a way, but nothing certain just yet," she answered.
"When we do track them down, we need a plan to stop them. Even without the aid of the clones, they would still pose a major threat," Zipper pointed out.
"Well cross that bridge when we come to it. First we have to stop the clones," said Chip.
"Well were just about to arrive at The Happy Tom Cat Food Factory. Fat Cats hideout."
"Good, now alls we have to do is find some way to get his goons attention. Knowing Fat Cat, hes probably got some other smaller scheme going on. If he does and we stop it his goons will definitely contact him."
"Here we are. Ill hide the Rangermobile behind the dumpster," said Gadget.
"Good, now lets see what else Fat Cats up to," buzzed Zipper.
"Zipper you fly up to the top and see whats going on well be up in a few minutes."
Zipper saluted and flew to the top of the building where the large metal cat sat atop the factory. Chip and Gadget entered the building through the ventilation ducts. They climbed up the shafts until they came to Fat Cats penthouse hide out. Once they were there they snuck out of one of the grates and started to investigate. After a few minutes, Zipper joined up with them and informed them that he had found something. He led them to a storage room with boxes of caviar.
"Hey! This is the stolen caviar shipment that we heard about on the news," said Gadget
"I knew if we came here we would find something. We should have suspected Fat Cat when we first heard about the robbery. But we were to busy on another case. Now all we have to do is get his goons to notice us," said Chip. "Since theyre not very bright, we should be able to trick them into contacting Fat Cat."
"Good, now all we have to is let them know were here."
"One of them is coming right now!" said Zipper in a series of buzzing and vibrations.
"Gadget, Zipper, make a lot of noise so hell come in here," said Chip. The small group of Rescue Rangers started to make some noise banging the boxes. The sound caught the attention of Mepps, who was on his way to get something to eat from Fat Cats private stash. As he was passing the storage room he heard some strange noises and decided to investigate.
"Hello? Is anyone here?" he asked, looking into the room. His voice had a tinge of fear in it. "Hello Mole Wart? Come on you guys, stop joking around," he hesitated and then entered the room. He turned on the light to see if he could see where the noises came from. When the lights came on he saw the small group of Rescue Rangers just standing there. "Rescue Rangers?" he stated rather plainly. The boss aint going to like this one bit."
"You bet he wont! We found his little scheme, so you might as well give up now!" said Chip, speaking like a true leader.
"In a few minutes this whole building will be surrounded by the police. We left clues so they could find this place," said Gadget. She hoped that he would believe her bluff.
"I better tell the boss!" said Mepps, running away.
"It worked," Chip sighed in relief.
"Now lets get going and wait for Fat Cat," said Gadget.
The small group of Rescue Rangers quickly got outside of the building and waited in the Rangermobile. They radioed the other group and told them to get ready.
Within a few minutes of leaving the Rescue Rangers, Mepps reached Fat Cats main office. He turned on the radio that Fat Cat had put there in case of an emergency in which he needed to be contacted. He hit the transmit switch and yelled into the microphone.
"Boss! Boss! We have a problem!" Mepps said in his scratchy voice.
Within a few minutes he received a reply. "What is it Mepps? I told you this was for emergencies!" said Fat Cat, sounding rather agitated.
"It is boss. The Rescue Rangers were just here. They found out about your stolen Caviar. They said the cops will be here any minute."
"What?!? Rescue Rangers!!!! How could they? No matter, just wait there. Ill take care of the Rescue Rangers. Over and out."
Mepps gave a sigh of relief, now the blame wouldnt fall on his shoulders. When one of Fat Cats henchmen messed up, they usually ending up in some sort of pain.
Back at Mount Curtiss, Fat Cat had just walked back into the main room. The other members of the Revenge Squad were milling about the room, occupied with their own things.
"I have just received word that the Rescue Rangers have stumbled onto one of my smaller schemes. So I have decided to end this now. Get ready for our last and final conflict with the Rescue Rangers. Everybody link up," he said gruffly.
The members got into position in their chairs and the VR helmets lowered onto their heads. Fat Cat turned on the system and they were in control of the clones once again. They took of from the hidden landing pad and headed for Fat Cats hideout. After a short air trip they arrived just in time to see the Rangermobile leaving the scene.
"There they are!" said Capone, pointing at the Rangermobile.
"Where are the cops?" asked Fat Cat.
"Probably getting donuts," joked Bubbles.
"No matter, the Rescue Rangers are our main goal. Desa'rae, follow them," ordered Fat Cat.
The Revengewing turned to follow the Rangermobile.
"There they are!" said Zipper pointing to a speck in the distance.
"Lets do it." said Chip with determination.
Gadget drove the Rangermobile in the direction of the Power Plant. "Good, theyre following us," she said.
"Ill contact the others and tell them to get ready," said Chip, reaching for the radio. He radioed the others and told them to get ready at the pre-designated point.
Within a few minutes the Rangermobile had led the Revengewing the road leading to the Power Plant. Just as the Revengewing was about to open fire the Rangerplane buzzed them.
"What the hell was that?" yelled Capone.
"Its their older plane. They must have split up into two groups! Desa'rae follow that plane, well take care of them first. Then well go back and take care of the others."
"With a plane like that it should take no time at all to shoot them down. But this time well have the missiles set a full charge."
"Just remember Chip is MINE," said Kyle.
"Yeah, Yeah we know," grumbled Capone.
"Dont worry Kyle, youll get you chance. We all will!" purred Fat Cat.
"There the are!" said Monterey pointing at the approaching Rangermobile with the Revengewing in hot pursuit.
"Theyre getting ready to shoot at the Rangermobile! We have to do something!" said Foxglove.
"Dont worry, I have an idea!" Dale took the Rangerplane into a dive right across the nose of the Revengewing. "That should get their attention."
"It sure did. Now theyre bearing down on us. I suggest that we get moving," said Monterey.
"Here we go!" He pushed the Rangerplane to its top speed. The wings started to act if they were about to rip off.
"I dont think the Rangerplane can keep this up, Dale," advised Foxglove.
"Dont worry, were almost there. Just a few more minutes."
The Rangerplane flew forward while the Revengewing gained on them. The tailfin of the Rangerplane snapped off making the flight very erratic. The Revengewing flew even closer.
"I think you had better dump that stuff Gadget whipped up now!" shouted Monterey over the throbbing of the Revengewings engine.
"Here it goes!" yelled Dale, pulling the switch that Gadget had just installed. The box attached to the rear of the Rangerplane opened up, dumping a purple blob into the air. The blob crashed into the Revengewing and started to envelop the villains aircraft and quickly hardened. With the weapons all gummed up, and no longer being able to stay airborne, the Revengewing dropped like a stone.
"What the hell is this stuff? Its hard as a rock!" Shouted Capone.
"It must be some type of plastic resign," answered Kyle. "Gadget must have made it and I have to admit, its a clever invention."
"That clever invention is going to make us crash!" shouted Bubbles.
"Dont worry, the Clones will survive the crash. If the Rescue Rangers think theyve won that easily, they are gravely mistaken. The have underestimated the Clones resistance to physical damage. Even though I dont really like the idea of crashing into the ground," said Desa'rae.
"Well here it comes! Brace yourselves!"
The Revengewing crashed into the ground and exploded, sending pieces of the Revengewing flying everywhere. Gadget, who had been driving on the ground in the Rangermobile, had to swerve to miss a burning chunk of the fuselage as it crashed down in front of them. "Golly! That was close!" she said.
"Whoa, with all those weapons on board, that thing really blew!" exclaimed Chip.
"OK. Now that that is taken care of, lets get inside the plant where the others should be waiting." said Gadget and turned the Rangermobile toward the power plant.
The Rangerplane had just dumped its cargo and was now heading for the power plant when Dale turned to address the other Rangers onboard. "Uh, I have good news and bad news," said Dale.
"Well whats the good news?" asked Monterey.
"The clones plane is now crashed and we dont have to worry about it anymore," answered Dale.
"And the bad?" asked Foxglove.
"I cant control the Rangerplane. Were going to have to make an emergency landing."
"Here we go again!" groaned Monterey.
Dale brought the Rangerplane down against the ground. It skidded against the pavement leaving a fiery shower of sparks and a long skid mark on the pavement. Before coming to a complete stop the Rangerplane did a couple of donut spins. Luckily, no one was hurt in the landing, though there were a few frayed nerves. Dale, Foxglove, and Monterey pulled themselves from the downed Rangerplane and surveyed the damage.
"Thats two," said Dale, trying to find some humor in the situation.
"There go the insurance rates," quipped Monterey. He looked up and saw the Rangermobile speeding up to them. It pulled up alongside the wreck and the other Rescue Ranger hopped in. They took off for the power plant at full throttle.
"Well Gadget, it looks like youre going to be working overtime after we finish with this case," said Chip.
"Two planes in one day. That has to be some kind of record," she replied.
"At least we wrecked their plane too," said Zipper.
"Everybody remember what to do when we reach the power plant?" Chip asked. The rest of the group nodded. They had hatched out the plan earlier at RRHQ. Now they hopped that it would work.
"Good, now to end the reign of the superclones."
The Rangermobile buzzed to a stop in front of the power plant, The team got out and went inside to set up their ambush for the clones.
Chapter 14 (This is a long one)
"Where did they go?" asked Capone, crawling out from the debris of the crashed Revengewing.
"I think I saw them heading towards the power plant." said Bubbles, also stepping out of the wreckage.
"The Clones might of survived the crash, but that is not something I would want to do again," moaned Desa'rae
"What? You didnt think that was fun? A crash like that would have killed anyone in it. But since we are in control of these Clones, we can survive anything!" laughed Kyle.
"You are insane." she stated plainly.
"Why thats the kindest thing anybodys said to me in a long time."
"Lets cut the chatter and go after the Rescue Rangers. I want to get this over with as soon as possible." said Fat Cat, sounding rather annoyed.
"Fat Cats right, we have to get after them before they escape. Lets go!" The Clones started to run towards the power plant. Even without a vehicle it would take them a matter of minutes to reach the power plant due to the Clones enhanced abilities. When they reached the entrance to the power plant they entered and started looking to see if they could see any signs of the Rescue Rangers.
"Where are they?" asked Bubbles.
"Probably cowering in fear somewhere," answered Capone with a laugh.
"Come out, Come out, where ever you are. We promise It wont hurt MUCH!" Bubbles yelled in a mocking tone.
"Are you afraid to face us Rescue Rodents?" Fat Cat yelled.
"Not on your life Fat Cat!" came the reply. They were unable to determine the source of the reply because of the throbbing of the generators and all the metal in the room caused the voice to echo. But they did recognize that the speaker was Chip.
"Huh? How did they know? No matter, they will be destroyed shortly. Since you have uncovered our little secret, I might as well introduce the rest of my team. Even though I figure that you have determined that for yourselves. Rat Capone is controlling the Dale clone. The Gadget clone is Desa'rae Delure. Bubbles is our Monterey Jack. And finally, Kyle Laurel is controlling the Zipper clone.
"So our little secret is out. So why dont you come out and we can end this shortly." sneered Bubbles.
"Why dont you come and look for us? Give us a sporting chance. There are five of us and five of you!"
"What about Foxglove?" asked Fat Cat. "That gives you six to our five. Even though no matter how much help you have, you will perish."
"She will not directly participate," the disembodied voice replied.
It was true Foxglove would not participate in the actual conflict. She had a much more important task to attend to. She would be the Rescue Rangers eyes and ears. She was positioned in the Security office where she could monitor almost any part of the plant. The bat would keep in contact with them with Gadgets miniature walkie-talkies.
"I guess we can have a little fun before we finish you off," said Fat Cat. "Okay, everybody split up and track down a Rescue Ranger. Happy hunting!"
The group split up each heading off into a different part of the power plant. The first on to find their adversary was Capone. He was just rounding the corner when he saw Dale. Dale stood smiling near the main turbine.
"There you are Rescue Ranger! Are you prepared to finally meet your end?"
"You make it sound as if you think you can win," Dale replied nonchalantly.
"Of course well win! Because we are stronger, faster, and more powerful than you will ever be! So you might as well surrender now."
"Yeah, Yeah, Resistance Is Futile. Weve heard that line before. But you forget one thing. Were the good guys. We always win!"
"I see youve been corrupted by all those movies you watch. Well I hate to tell you this time John Wayne doesnt walk off of into the sunset with Grace Kelly."
"Thats Gary Cooper you moron. All this coming from someone who quotes Ed Asner."
"Well this conversation has been really great, but now you die."
The Dale clone leaped at Dale. Dale quickly rolled out of the way and the clone smashed into the floor. Dale knew that physical force would get him nowhere, he needed to trick the clone into the turbine. And he would do it by getting Capone angry with him.
"Ha, it looks like you missed. Maybe you are just a two-bit hood Capone."
"Why you," Capone yelled lunged again, this time he crashed right into Dale. Dale quickly rolled onto his back and flipped the clone into the wall. The clone impacted against the wall and bounced off, uninjured.
"Havent you noticed you cant hurt me. You cant run and dodge forever you know." He lunged at Dale again but this time Dale ducked down and the clone went tumbling right into the turbine. As soon as the clone hit it was encapsulated by arcs of raw energy. The clone exploded sending the liquid metal splattering everywhere. The walls and the floor were covered in the silver liquid. Dale picked himself off the ground, brushed some dust off of his shirt and turned to face what was left of the clone.
"Youre right! All I had to do was run and dodge until I got you into the turbine. One down four to go!" he said as he pulled out his walkie-talkie and radioed Foxglove.
"Score one for the Rescue Rangers. I kinda hated doing that to him, he was such a good looking guy."
"Hmmm I wonder what it would have been like to have two of you," came the reply.
Rat Capone gripped the helmet and screamed in pain. The destruction off the clone had overloaded the VR helmets system. Since he was mentally connected to the clone he passed out from the shock to his brain. He wasnt permanently injured, but he was out for the count. The other members of the Revenge Squad were too preoccupied in their own clones to notice what had happened to the large rat.
The next member of the Rescue rangers to meet a clone was Monterey Jack. Unlike Dale, who had met his own clone, Monterey ran into the Gadget clone. He was being directed by Foxglove to where another trap could be successfully set up. But before he could get there the Gadget clone found him.
"Hello Monterey, remember me?" she said in a low sultry voice.
"Desa'rae! I though you had sunk pretty low, but to join a group of maniacs? I though even you had your standards."
"Good to see you too Monterey," came the sarcastic reply. "So how do you think you can win this fight? I know that you will not fight back you are too much of a gentleman to hit a woman. And with me in control of your precious Gadget, you will be utterly helpless."
"You might look like Gadget, you may even sound like her, but you are not Gadget."
"But I look like her, and there is part of you that will not allow you to fight with all of your heart. That will cause you to hold back and that will be your downfall."
Shes right. he thought to himself. Even though he knew it wasnt Gadget, part of him would not allow himself to fight her. He had always taken care of Gadget. She was to precious to him to ever hurt her, even if it was a clone. He knew if he was to win he would have to play on Desa'raes weaknesses. Her overconfidence will be her downfall.
She didnt let him finish his thought. She lunged at him and connected her right shoulder to his midsection, sending him flying back. He landed on the floor with a loud thud. The large mouse quickly rolled to his side to avoid another blow. He got up and backed up, awaiting her next move. His mind was racing frantically and he did not have enough time to get her to the planned trap. She lunged at him again, but this time he was prepared. He caught her, and using her own momentum, tossed her over his shoulder sending her crashing into a control panel. Sparks went flying everywhere. There was an electrical charge in the panel, but not enough to cause any damage to the clone. She quickly recovered and came at him again. This time she made contact and drove him crashing onto the floor. He let out a gasp of air. Getting to his knees, he knew he couldnt take this much longer. He was about to stand up when he noticed a heavy duty power cable running along the floor. An idea came to him. He wrapped his hands around it getting a firm grip. Looking up he saw the clone was backing up to prepare a blow that would most likely kill him.
"Why dont you just get it over with? Im beat. I cant even get up to my feet," he hopped she would believe his bluff.
"Well Monterey, if you say so. Goodbye!" She rushed toward him with incredible speed. Just as she was going to deliver the fatal blow he mustered up all his strength and pulled the cable up and shoved it right into the clone. The clone stood there trembling as raw power entered into it. Like the other clones, it exploded, sending the liquid metal flying all over the place.
Monterey stood up and surveyed the damage. His fur had bits and traces of the bio-metal in it. He hoped that it wasnt toxic. Pulling out his walkie-talkie, he radioed Foxglove.
"Well thats one less clone we have to worry about. Whats the score?"
"Thats two down and three to go. That was a pretty inventive way of taking out that clone."
"Thanks Foxy. For a minute there I thought I was done for. Im just lucky I found that cable."
Back at Mount Curtiss, Desa'rae suffered the same fate as Capone. Her helmet shorted out when her clone was destroyed. She was also rendered unconscious.
Gadget had just reached the very top of the dam where the reserve tank of water was kept in case that the water level ever dropped significantly enough that the hydroelectric plant would not function properly when she ran into the Monterey clone.
"Hello Gadget. Its been a long time"
"Bubbles, you havent changed a bit. Still hanging out with a bunch of losers," she said dropping into a fighting stance.
"For once I agree with you. They are losers. After we finish off you and your friends, Ill kill them and take over their territories, making myself the supreme crime lord of this city."
"I guess there is no honor among thieves. Because that is what you are. No matter how many speeches you make," she continued the brave talk, it helped calm her. Bubbles had almost killed her in the Case of the Cola Cult and seeing him in Montereys form unnerved her. "You are nothing but a common thief and that is all that you will ever be!"
"So inventor. How do you want to go? Quick like a rattlesnakes tongue? Or slow like the molasses in June?"
"Golly Bubbles, what bad western did you step out of?"
"What? You never heard of Joan Wilder?"
"Sorry, Im more of a Nikoli Tesla fan."
"I have been looking forward to this for a long time. Prepare to meet your end, inventor!" Bubbles snarled and moved towards Gadget. In response, she acted as though she was going to run straight for him. Bubbles prepared himself in a stance as to catch her. But she quickly turned around and dove into the water, leaving Bubbles standing there dumbfounded. "So you want to go swimming? Fine by me," he said as he dived in after her.
As soon as she dove into the water, Gadget headed straight for the bottom of the tank. When she reached the bottom she searched around with her hand for the main intake tunnel. When she found it, she swam into it. It was completely dark inside of the tunnel so she had to feel her way through. She was running out of air and her lungs were starting to scream for air. Just a little bit farther! She thought. She could hear Bubbles pursing her through the tunnel. He was taking his time following her since the clone didnt need oxygen to breathe. She finally saw she was coming to the end of the tunnel. She emerged from the tunnel into a smaller tank and quickly shot to the top. When she broke through the top of the water she breathed in generous amounts of air. No time to waste! she thought as she swam to the side of the tank and pulled herself out. When she saw the clone emerge from the same tunnel she quickly pulled a lever next to the tank, which caused a grate to seal off the tunnel. Bubbles bobbed to the top of the tank like a cork.
"Hey Bubbles!" she said, standing on a rubber mat looking down at him. In her right hand she was holding a round disk with a sharp edge. "What happens when an electric cable hits water?" She glanced up at a power cable hanging directly over the tank.
Before he could answer her question she threw the disk, severing the cable. The cable landed directly in the water, turning it into a gigantic conductor. The clone, like the rest, exploded turning the water a murky gray color. Gadget ran over to the console and turned off the power to that cable. She pulled out her walkie-talkie and radioed Foxglove.
"Well Foxy, there goes another one. How are the others doing?"
"Three down and two left. It looks like Zipper will be the next to fight a clone. But I cant make out which one it is."
"Okay, make sure you keep him informed of the situation," advised Gadget as she wrung water out of her hair.
Bubbles helmet, like the others, shorted out and knocked him unconscious. By this time, the other members of the Revenge Squad had realized that their numbers were being depleted. There were only two of them left now, Fat Cat and Kyle. They decided to take extra precautions handling the Rescue Rangers.
Zipper had flown to where the power cables ran out of the plant and towards the city. He flew to the large transformer, which was in a large metal cage to keep unauthorized personal out. Since he was a fly, he could easily fly right through the chain link fence. He flew up high to see if he could spot a clone following him. He didnt have to wait long. He was caught of guard by his own clone, who rammed him, sending him reeling back into the ground.
"You must by Zipper."
"And you must by Kyle."
"Ah, I see youve heard of me."
"Ive heard enough to know that you are an unstable lunatic."
"Flattery will get you nowhere."
"I have a question," said Zipper. The real nut jobs usually loved to talk about their schemes. Zipper knew the tactic well; the Rangers had met many a crazy in their time. It often revealed useful information, and gave them time to form a plan.
"OK. I guess the condemned can ask one last question."
"How come you came after me? I thought you had it in for Chip."
"I do have it in for Chip, but this is not the way I want to take care of him. Using the clones to take down the other Rescue Rangers was fine by my partners. But I have something very special planned for Chip."
"What are you going to do to him?"
"Bzzztt! Sorry Zipper, I said one last question. Now that I have answered it, I can kill you!"
"You have to catch me first!"
Zipper took of flying at his top speed. He knew that the clone could fly faster than he could and had more power. But he knew he had one thing that Kyle didnt have, experience. Kyle had only been using the clone for a short time and did not have much practice flying. Zipper, on the other hand, had a lifetime of experience. He knew all the ins and outs of the art of flying, and he would use that to his advantage. He flew circles around the transformers with the clone in pursuit. The clone was slowly gaining on him and he knew it was time to make his move. He flew at his top speed, heading directly for the transformer. He could hear the buzzing of the electricity running through it. He looked behind him and saw the clone gaining on him. He kept on flying for the transformer. The clone was almost right on top of him by now! He was just about to crash into the transformer when he shot straight up in the air. He was flying vertically to the transformer so close that the electromagnetic field emanating from it made him dizzy. The clone, as he had hoped, was not able to pull up in time and smashed directly into the transformer. It, like the others before it, was destroyed. Zipper, who was not carrying a walkie-talkie since he was too small, immediately went to search down Foxglove so that she could inform the others of his victory.
Kyle, who had foreseen the destruction of his clone a split second before it happened, was able to disconnect himself from the system that controlled the clones. So he did not suffer the same fate as the others. They had been knocked out by the overloads in their helmets. Even though there would be no permanent damage, they would be out for at least 24 hours since their brains had been interfacing with the system when it shut down. Only Fat Cat was left with a clone to control. None of this bothered Kyle, because he only wanted to get even with Chip, and his plan was going exactly as he had planned.
Using Foxgloves directions, Chip was able to get a jump on his clone. The clone had just walked into a room when Chip stepped out in front of it.
"So Fat Cat? Is this the best your little team can do? The other clones have already been destroyed. Even with their enhanced abilities, they were still no mach for the Rescue Rangers."
"The clones were only one plan of the Revenge Squad to destroy you. We have other plans also. I think we did quite a good job on our first try."
"Dont you see Fat Cat! No matter how many plans you come up with, no matter how hard you try, you will never defeat us because we are a team! Your group might call itself a team, you might even work together, but you dont have true teamwork! I or any of the Rescue Rangers would face possible death if it meant protecting the rest of the team! Can you or any other member of your group say that? No! Each of you is in the group for your own personal reasons! You might have the same goal, but you all have ulterior motives and you would turn on each other when it suited you best."
The Chip clone smiled at him. "True. I dont trust any of them and I certainly know they dont trust me. But just remember as long as there are Rescue Rangers, there will always be those who will oppose you. So it only makes sense we work as a group, pool our resources and knowledge."
"But what are you going to do now? You are in control of the only clone left!"
"Well Chip, I know you probably have some trap set up here somewhere so I wont even bother trying to fight you. Anyway, there is a new game plan. Kyle and I decided to go at this from a different angle."
Chip flinched when he heard Kyle mentioned.
"Ah yes, Kyle and I are becoming quite good associates. His hatred and anger for you surpass any of the other members of the Squad. Well, back to the subject. We figured if we take you out of the way now, the rest of the team will be easy to take down one by one."
"How are you going to do that? You just told be youre not going to bother to try and fight me."
"Well Chip, there are other ways of taking you down without fighting you. Such as this!" he pulled out of his pocket what looked like a hi-tech gun.
"What youre going to shoot me? Thats original!" said Chip sarcastically. He hoped that his sarcasm might anger Fat Cat enough to attack without the weapon.
"No, Chip that would be too violent, and there would be a chance that you would not survive being shot. Kyle wants you alive. This here is a neat little gizmo. A type of weapon that uses sound. It interferes with the normal functions of the brain. If I used the highest seating, it would melt your brain like jelly. But since we want you alive, I will use a much lower setting."
He aimed the gun at Chip and pulled the trigger. Chip instantly felt dizzy. He tried to radio for help, but he couldnt get his hand to move. After a few seconds of not even being able to think straight he passed out.
The rest of the Rescue Ranger had met in the Security room. They had each told each other of how they had defeated a clone. They were waiting for Chip to arrive.
"Foxy have you heard anything from Chip since he came in contact with his Clone?" asked Gadget.
"No, he and his clone were in the only part of the plant which cannot be monitored from this room. He radioed me before going in, but I havent heard anything since then."
"Maybe we should try to radio him," said Dale. Pulling out his walkie-talkie, he switched it on and started talking. "Chip? Chip? Can you hear me?" The only reply he got was static.
All the others tried their walkie-talkies just in case something might have been wrong with Dales. They to got no response. They quickly decided to go to Chips last know position to see if they could find anything. When they reached the room, they found nothing. There was not a single trace of Chip or his clone. They searched high and low. But there were no clues to be found.
In frustration they returned to the Security office to try to figure out what had happened to Chip.
"Could they be somewhere else in the plant? Maybe something went wrong and Chip had to try to trap the clone somewhere else," said Monterey.
"I dont think thats the answer. I was monitoring everything from here. No one came out of there. But someone could have left through the window in that room," said Foxglove.
"Maybe hes outside somewhere," guessed Dale.
"If he is still around, why hasnt he responded when we radioed him? I think something might have happened to him," said Gadget softly.
"Kyle told me that he had something special planned for Chip," Zipper said. "Maybe they took him back to their hideout."
"Thats probably what happened," Gadget said.
"If thats true, how do we find him?" asked Monterey.
Having been given a task to put her mind to, Gadget immediately brightened and started talking quickly. "Well since creating and powering those clones would take an enormous amount of energy. Maybe I can use the plants computer to track down and spikes in the power grid. Which would most likely be wherever they are hiding out!" she exclaimed excitedly.
Gadget went to the main terminal and turned it on. After a few minutes of searching through files and records she finally found what she was looking for. A large map of the city was displaced on the screen. Various parts of the city were highlighted in different shades of color. The colors ranged from an icy blue to a very bright red.
"This map shows the average power used by the city in the past few months. But since we do not want to look back that far, I have adjusted it to show the averages for the past few days," she explained and pressed a key and a new map popped up. It was identical to the last except for a few changes in the color pattern. She pointed to the lower half of the screen where after an area of low power usage there was a very bright spot of red. "This right here indicates an enormous amount of energy had been used there. And according to the records the amount of energy that was used was so high it went of the scale. The power spikes for that area are way too high to be normal. The only thing that can cause power spikes like that would be very heavy equipment, or possibly the type of equipment that could create and control the clones."
"So in plain English thats where the bad guys are," Dale spoke up.
"Very probable, yes," she answered.
"Where exactly is that at Gadget?" Monterey asked.
"Let me see," she pressed a few buttons and an enlarged picture of the area came up displaying more information about it. "Golly, according to this its in Mount Curitss."
"Dont you mean on top of Mount Curtiss?" asked Zipper
"No, I mean whatever this place is it is directly in the center of the mountain," replied Gadget.
"I think I might know whats in there!" exclaimed Foxglove. "One time I flew out there a few years back and I found out from another bat that there used to be an old Civil Defense shelter there. It was supposed to be used for top government officials. It was build back during the peak of the cold war."
"At least we know were on the right track now," Zipper said.
"But now we have to figure out how to go about getting in and getting Chip out " Dale interjected.
"We need a plan!" Monterey stated. Everybody looked at Gadget.
"Well I do have a plan to get in and out. But first we have to return to RRHQ to pick up some things."
"Then lets get going. Who knows what Kyle will do to Chip," Dale said in a worried tone.
Chip heard someone calling his name. He was still groggy from the sound gun that Fat Cat had used on him. After a few seconds of disorientation he was able to hear the voice clearly now.
"Chip. You-hoo! Time to wake up. Helloooo? Anyone home?"
Chip recognized it as being Kyles. A voice he had not heard in years. He realized that he was lying on a metal floor and that his hands were tied behind his back. Kyles voice continued on. "Oh come now Chip, snap out of it. The setting on the gun was too low to cause any real damage!"
Chip had grown tired of Kyles voice. He opened his eyes and saw Kyle there hunched over him. Chip looked Kyle straight in the eyes. "Will you please shut up!" he yelled.
"Gee Chip, first time Ive seen you in a years, and the first thing you say to me is shut up," Kyle said in a voice that sounded as if Chip had hurt his feelings.
"Well after what you did, I think I can be a little upset with you! Chip retorted.
"What have I done? The only reason Im in this little venture is to get you. Its the other that wanted to ruin your reputation and go after your friends. I have nothing against the other Rescue Rangers. Trusting you has already punished them enough.
"Kyle what happened to you was completely your fault," Chip responded in even tone. "I am not to blame."
"Yeah, just like the iceberg was not to blame for sinking the Titantic."
"Listen Kyle, you need help! I can help you get that help!"
"Yeah right, like Im going to trust you. You were a very close friend of mine. And what did you do? You betrayed my trust and ruined my life! You did it on purpose because you were jealous of me!"
"Listen to yourself, youre delusional! What did Intergang do to you?" asked Chip.
"Why they helped me. Improved my mind. I am now the smartest being alive!"
"At what cost? Your sanity?"
"Im just a sane as I ever was Chip"
At this, Chip wondered if his friend had ever been sane in the first place. "Was it Intergang that broke you out of Strykers?" he asked.
"In a way. Erick did not inform you of the full extents of what that enzyme did to my mind did he?"
Chip looked shocked when he heard Kyle mention his meeting with Erick. Kyle saw the expression on Chips face and continued. "Oh Yes! I know all about that little meeting. Its pretty hard to keep anything a secret from me. Anyway, back to the subject. You know how people always speak of a sixth sense? Well I currently posses eight senses! It was mere childs play to override and figure out the security locks."
"So now what are you going to do?"
"Well I dont exactly know yet. I have dreamed of this moment for years. And now that it is finally here Im not sure what I want to do to you yet. Ill have to think about it."
Kyle got up and walked over to a door. He tuned off the light, leaving Chip in complete darkness. "See you later Buddy!" he said sarcastically and left the room, locking the door behind him.
Chip lay there for a few minutes until he believed Kyle was gone. After he was quite sure that it would be awhile before Kyle would return, he started to work on his bonds. He couldnt reach the pockets of his jacket. And he knew if he could, anything that he could have used to escape would be removed. But he still worked at trying to get himself untied.
The Rescue Rangers had just returned from RRHQ. There they had retrieved some equipment to make a covert raid on Mount Curtiss. They knew even with all but one of the clones destroyed, the actual team of villains itself would pose a major threat. They were now all wearing black clothing so they would be less visible in case someone was keeping a lookout. They had left the Rangermobile about half a mile back to be on the safe side and traveled the rest of the way on foot.
"There it is, Mount Curtiss," stated Dale in a hushed voice.
"How do we get in? I doubt that it has a front door," responded Monterey, also in a low voice.
"Most bomb shelters built during the 50s had a hatch at the very top. Like a submarine, so there is an entrance most likely hidden somewhere on top of the mountain," Gadget replied. "But I dont think that would be the best way to go in. They must have had some other entrance for that plane of theirs. I think that would be the best way to sneak in."
"But where would that be?" asked Foxglove.
"Well they would most likely use the emergency ventilation shaft. And it would most likely come out of the side of the mountain. The North side to be more specific."
"So now all we have to do is find it and sneak in," said Dale.
"Dont worry I have that all figured out."
Chip was just beginning to make some progress on getting his hands free when Kyle returned. He tried to roll over so that Kyle would not notice the lose rope, but was too late. Kyle noticed and tightened them again.
"Uh-Uh Chip, youre not getting away from me."
"How long are you going to leave me tied up?"
"Gee Chip. Do you want to rush your death?"
"What makes you think I will die?"
"What makes you think you can win?"
"Because Im A Rescue Ranger, and I will fight you and your associates until I cant fight anymore. All the Rescue Rangers will!"
"Oh Im sure you will, but trust me. You will die! But since I am such a nice guy Ill give you a choice. I can kill you right now or we can have a duel."
"Yes, a duel. In fact I have replicas of the pistols used in the famous Hamilton Burr duel."
"Dont you see Kyle, I want to help you! I dont want to fight you!"
"Well Chip, I want to fight you."
"Well I tried to talk sense into you, but I cant. If you want a fight, lets make it fair. No weapons, no clones."
"No Rescue Rangers, No Revenge Squad. Just Chip and Kyle the way it should be."
Kyle bent over and untied Chip. Chip got up to his feet and looked Kyle straight in the eye. The mouse he was looking at was his first friend he ever had, The person whom he had shared lots of first experiences with, and also the person who wanted to see him dead. They stood there for several long moments waiting for the other to make the first move. Finally after almost a minute of complete stillness Kyle lunged for Chip. Chip was caught of guard and was rewarded by an elbow to the ribs. He let out a gasp of air and returned a blow to Kyles stomach he backed up and doubled over.
"Please Kyle lets end it here. This might be our last chance to straighten this mess out," Chip pleaded.
"NEVER!!!" Kyle came at Chip with a rush and slammed him into the wall. Wasting no time, he grabbed Chip by the shoulder and punched him full force right in his back.
Chip felt a warm sensation as the bile rose in his throat. He spat it out and spun around blindly with a punch. He connected with Kyles jaw sending him spinning. Kyle starred at Chip for a few seconds and took off running for a door. Chip quickly laid in pursuit. Chip followed Kyle through the door and found he was now walking on dirt. He was in some kind of tunnel. He felt the walls of the room and realized they were smooth as glass. After a few feet the tunnel opened up into a large room. The room was lit by an overhead light that cast shadows everywhere. Off to one side of the room several wooden crates were stacked to the ceiling. On the far side of the room the floor dropped of into a chasm.
"Do you know where you are?" Kyles voice asked. "The cavern that we are in is the magma chamber of a dormant volcano. Thats why the walls are smooth. Of course you should know all this from Mr. Doonovans earth-science class.
"Where are you Kyle? You wanted a fight! Now Im ready to give you one!"
"I guess you do have a death wish." Kyle said stepping out of the shadows from behind Chip. Chip quickly spun around and slammed Kyle into the ground.
Kyle wasted no time. He quickly grabbed Chips ankles and pulled him crashing to the ground. Both fighters got back up to their feet. Kyle took a hold of Chips waist and sent him crashing through the crates. He pulled himself out of the pile of broken crates, a shred of his jacket ripped off and hung limply from a vertical shaft of wood.
Cant take this much longer. Have to end it soon! he thought to himself as Kyle moved in again. This time Chip made the first move. He slammed his fist into Kyles jaw. Chip didnt stop there. He knew that he couldnt give Kyle a chance to collect himself, so he punched Kyle again in his stomach. "Listen Kyle its over! Just give yourself up. I can get you help. You have to trust me!"
"No Chip! Im not going to let you stick me in another institution where I will be studied like a rat! The hours of tests, the probes to figure out how my mind works! Ill never go back to that living hell again!"
"Kyle I didnt know," Chip faltered and hesitated in his assault.
"Im sure you didnt!" Kyle answered in a sarcastic tone. He stepped backwards, unaware that the chasm was just a few inches behind him.
"Kyle watch out!" Chip shouted as he lunged to grab his opponent. Chip caught a hold of Kyles arm just as he started to plummet into the chasm. Kyle just hung there swinging like a pendulum. He looked down and was able to see the faint glow of a river of lava running at least 100 feet straight down. Chip kept a tight grip on Kyles arm while his other was dug tightly into the ground acting as an anchor.
"Hang on Kyle! Ill pull you up!" Chip grunted as his shoulders strained.
"No Chip, like I said I am not going back to the constant experiments. I would choose death over going back there."
"Kyle, I dont want it to end like this. Ill personally help you get rehabilitated!"
"Yeah right like Im going to believe that."
"Dont you see Kyle? I still care about you!" Chip shouted desperately.
"Im sorry Chip. One way or another its going to end here," Kyle responded quietly.
"What do you mean?"
"Since I failed in killing you. I dont want to live with that failure hanging over my head."
"Kyle Listen to what you are saying! You cant be serious!"
"Oh but I am serious very serious "
"Chip! There you are!" Dales voice cried out.
Chip turned his head to see the other Rescue Rangers heading for him. Kyle had also noticed their arrivals because when Chip looked at him he had a large smile on his face.
"Goodbye Chip." Kyle pulled himself from Chips grasp. Chip stared, mortified as Kyle plunged to his demise.
The Rescue rangers had just scaled the mountain and were searching for the ventilation shaft. Since it was a old top secret Civil Defense Shelter the entrance to the shaft would be hidden from view. Gadget quickly determined where the entrance would most likely be located. She was only one yard off the mark. They gathered around the hidden entrance. It was behind some scrub brush. The brush was hooked up to a mechanism that swung it out like a door. Monterey was easily able to pull it open. The ventilation shaft, however, turned out to be another problem. It was covered with a steel grate that had a fine wire mesh interwoven between the bars. It also as hinged but was locked. After a few minutes of working on it Gadget was able to unlock with her tail. The door swung upwards automatically. The Rangers peered into the dark shaft.
"It sure is dark," commented Dale.
"Well come on, we had better get moving," Gadgets said as she pulled out a flashlight. They entered the shaft and started to walk through it. Gadget shone the flashlight a head of them so they could see where they were going. After a few minutes of walking they came to a dead end.
"I guess this is the end of the shaft," said Foxglove.
"Now what?" asked Dale.
"Well there must be a door here somewhere. Look around for something that might be a door or some type of switch," Gadget said.
After a few minutes of searching Zipper spoke up. "Look here!" They all turned to see where he had indicated. It was a small box with wires running through it.
"I think that might be what we are looking for, Good job Zipper!" Gadget pried the top off of the box and examined the part of the wall around the box. "There is definitely a door here."
"Can you open it?" asked Monterey.
"No problem," She answered as she twisted a few wires together and the wall in front of them opened up into the main room of the Revenge Squads HQ. "Be quiet," she whispered to the rest of them as they passed through the door hopping down to the ground.
"Crickey! This place looks right out of a movie!" Monterey commented on all the high tech equipment.
"Look over there!" Dale said pointing at the main table where Bubbles, Capone, and Desa'rae were passed out. They ran over to them. "Are they dead?"
"No. They are still alive." Gadget said after examining each of them.
"What happened to them?" asked Foxglove.
"When we destroyed the clones, the system the were using must have backfired on them. From the looks of this equipment they were using a VR type of interface. These helmets are like nothing Ive ever seen."
"But wait! There are two of them missing. Kyle and Fat Cat!" Zipper said
"Why dont you look behind you?"
The Rangers spun around to see Fat Cat standing behind them. He had come out of the smaller room where all the cloning equipment was. "You did not really think you could get in here without my knowledge did you?"
"Wheres Chip?" Dale demanded.
"Hes out playing with Kyle. But forget about him, you have me to play with," Fat Cat purred evilly.
"Give it up you mangy feline! You dont stand a chance against the five of us!" said Monterey, stepping forward.
"Weve beat you before and we can easily do it again," Dale said.
"Oh but you see Rangers, I will be the victor this time. Ever hear of something called a fail-safe?"
"Yeah. What about it?" Gadget asked cautiously.
"Well it seems that Kyle was able to acquire a nuclear warhead. We were going to save it for a special occasion but I guess well use it now. Gadget, I have a question for you. What would happen when a nuclear device is detonated in the magma chamber of a volcano?"
"Youre insane," Gadget said as she realized what he was about to do. "If you cause this volcano to erupt, millions will die!"
"Regrettable causalities of war. But you Rangers will most certainly be dead. You can kiss your lives goodbye. I think it would be a most fitting way for this city to go. In a rain of fiery lava."
"You would destroy the entire city just to kill us?" Foxglove asked.
"This is nothing against you my dear. But since you decided to stand by and help your friends, you can have the honor of going out with them."
"What about the other members of your team? You just going to let them die?" asked Monterey gruffly.
"They failed in their mission. They deserve to die. Well Rangers, my time grows short, so I must bid you farewell." With that, Fat Cat left through the main entrance hatch, sealing it behind him. They heard a steel plate slamming down on the ventilation shaft in which they had entered, sealing it.
"Now what are we going to do?" asked Dale.
"We have to find that bomb and disarm it," Gadget replied.
"What about Chip?" asked Zipper.
"If we dont disarm that bomb, well all be dead. Chip included!"
"Fat Cat said it would be detonated in a magma chamber. Any idea where that would be?" asked Monterey.
"First we have to find a way into the volcano. Look for some type of door. And hurry, we dont know how much time we have!"
They searched the two rooms for the door. After a few more minutes of searching, Dale called to the rest of them. "Here it is! I found it!" They all ran to where he was, opened the door, and stepped through. Once their eye adjusted to the dim light they saw Chip lying on the ground next to a crevice holding onto something. They started to head for him
"Chip! There you are!" Dale shouted in relief. They could now see what Chip was hanging onto. Or more appropriately, who he was hanging on to. They realized that it must be Kyle. They did not get a chance to look at him much longer because after he had noticed their arrival, he pulled him from Chips grasp and fell into the chasm. They saw Chips horrified expression and rushed over to him.
"He He just let go." Chip stammered.
"Chip, he let go a long time ago," Gadget said, comforting him. "But right now we have a bomb to disarm. Do you know where it is?"
Chip, having collected his composure, led them over to the pile of crates. "This is the only place where it could be."
They started to dig through the pile of shattered wood. Chip was correct. Lying beneath the broken boards was the bomb. Gadget pressed a button on the side of the warhead and the side panel opened up revealing a small computer counsel. The display showed that they had ten minutes before the bomb detonated.
"Can you disarm it Gadget?" Dale asked.
"I dont want to rush into this! I dont have enough time or the right tools to disarm a nuclear weapon!" She responded bleakly.
"What about a password to shut it down. There must be some way to turn this thing off!" said Monterey.
"Wait a minute. I have an idea!" exclaimed Chip, walking to the miniature keyboard. "Even though Kyle was crazy, even he would have a backup system. Maybe if I try personal information for the password." Chip tried all that he could think off. Birthdays, phrases that Kyle used to say, nicknames. Nothing worked, and their time was growing shorter. THINK! he thought to himself. Kyle was always one to have a sick sense of humor. So he figured that the password would be simple yet difficult to figure out. After a few more minutes of trying with no result an idea cane to him. The others were beginning to get very nervous behind him as the clock ticked down.
"It cant be," he said with a smile. His fingers flew across the keyboard typing in three simple letters. O-F-F. The device shut down with less than a minute left to go.
"Off! That was the password to shut down the bomb?" said Dale dumbfounded.
"Its quite clever in a way and sick," commented Monterey.
"Well at least we dont have to worry about it going off," Gadget said with a sigh of relief.
"Now what? There is still the matter of the three villains in the main room. Also, Fat Cat escaped."
"Dont worry about them. Ill inform Strykers, theyll send someone to pick them up," said Chip. "As for Fat Cat, well after what happened, I think hell be laying low for awhile."
"Well at least the Ranger-clone saga is finally over," Dale said.
"With all the evidence here it should be easy for you to clear your names," said Foxglove.
Chip walked over to the chasm and looked down it. "So this is how it ended. Kyle chose death over going back to prison. Im going to have to have a long talk with Warden Sawyer." Chip said angrily. "Thats twice Ive failed to help Kyle. The first time he ended up in jail, the second time he ended up dead!"
"Chip what happened to him was not your fault. As I said earlier, you cant blame yourself for the path he chose to walk." Said Monterey comfortingly.
"Yeah, but maybe I could have changed it," Chip said glumly. "Come on. Lets get out of here."
Chapter 19 (Last one)
Chip spent the trip home in the Rangermobile in complete silence. After they returned to Rescue Ranger HQ, he said that he wanted to spend some time alone outside. No one protested.
"You couldnt have helped him you know," Chip looked over his shoulder and saw Erick walking towards him. "He was so far into his insanity that he was beyond help."
"Did you know what they did to him at Strykers?" Chip asked Erick angrily.
"No, I had no idea. No one deserves to go through what he claimed he went through there. As soon as I found out, I had Warden Sawyer put on immediate suspension. She will be investigated."
"How did you find out?"
"Well as soon as you left Mount Curtiss a clean up team went in to remove all stolen equipment. They found surveillance video there."
"You guys move pretty fast."
"You have to. in this business there are no trophies for second place."
"Did you see the videos?" Chip asked nervously.
"Yes, as I said, there was nothing you could do for him. Hopefully hes at peace with the world now."
"Erick, why dont you quit this Agency you work for and come and join the Rescue Rangers," offered Chip. "You would make a fine addition to the team."
"Sorry Chip, even though it is a tempting offer. I enjoy working there. I have learned things that would turn your hair gray. Sure there is danger to it but I like it. In my own way I am helping others. And now down to business. Here," he said and tossed Chip a thick folder.
"What is it?" Chip queried.
"That is the Agencys complete files on the Rescue Rangers. It turns out that we had a leak. That is how Kyle acquired all the personal data on your team. I figured that the information was just too dangerous."
"But what if it is discovered missing? Arent you putting yourself in danger?"
"No, I replaced the information with a dummy file. They wont be able to tell the difference. There is information in that folder on your fellow teammates that even you are not aware of."
"In that case, destroy it." Chip said, tossing the folder back to Erick. "This type of information is too dangerous."
"Good choice Chip. Now for the other reason I have come. This time not business, but personal advice."
"What is it?"
"Walk with me Chip," he said. They started off in any general direction. "I need to give you some advice on love."
Chip was caught surprised by his comment. "What did you say?"
"Chip, it doesnt take the resources of the Agency to tell that you are in love with Gadget," he said with a laugh. "I figured that out on my own!"
"So what advice can you give me?"
"Simple as the great Billy Joel said, Tell her about it, Tell her everything you feel"
"It isnt that simple you know. There are other things to consider."
"Well for starters there is how it will affect the other members of the Rangers If you know as much as you say then you would know how that would affect Dale. He would be devastated. I couldnt hurt his feelings "
"But forget about them. What about your feelings."
"I just cant do that. You know they are my friends."
"So you would be willing to put your love life on hold for the sake of not hurting Dales feelings," said Erick said with much doubt in his voice.
"You fool, Its not Dales feeling youre worried about, its yours you are just using him as an excuse."
"What do you mean?" Chip asked angrily. He had stopped dead in his tracks and looked Erick coldly in the eyes.
"You are afraid of being rejected. That is why you will not reveal your emotions to her. You use Dales feelings as an excuse. Well let me tell you if you do not tell her your feelings you will regret it down the road. You will look back on your life and wonder what might have been. So I suggest for your sake that you tell her how you feel about her."
"Who do you think you are? Sigmund Freud?"
"No. I am a friend who is trying to help another friend. Trust me Chip, tell her before it is to late. Remember tomorrow is never, ever guaranteed." Erick said with a hint of sorrow in his voice. "I learned that the hard way."
"Im still not sure Erick. Ill have to think about it," Chip had heard the change in Ericks voice, but thought it was best not to press the matter.
"Just remember the longer you spend thinking. The harder it will get to tell her. Dont put it off. Well Chip, I could spend the whole night talking to you but I have to go. Duty calls."
"So where are you off to?"
"Sorry, I cant tell you that"
"I figured that. So when will I see you again?"
"Youll see," said Erick with a mischievous smile as he slowly walked away into the shadows.
Chip stood there watching his friend disappear. In his mind he wondered what he meant. He stood there for a few minutes and then walked back to headquarters thinking about what Erick had said. Maybe I should tell her, he though to himself. After about ten minutes of walking he was standing outside of the door. He stood there for a few minutes getting himself collected before he went in.
Dale was sitting on the couch showing Foxglove an issue of "Thunderbolts". He appeared to be caught up in the action. Chip could hear Dale commenting to her on the plot line.
"Who would of though that The Thunderbolts were actually The Masters Of Evil in disguise. This is just like the Hyperclan turning out to be the Pale Martians in JLA!"
Chip walked by the couch and continued on his way. He could hear Monterey and Zipper in the kitchen whipping up what was sure to be a victory feast. After all they had proved their innocence to the park residents, stopped the Revenge Squad, and saved the whole city. But Chip did not feel like the celebrating mood. He had lost someone who had once been very close to him and now Ericks words were haunting him. He stopped dead in his tracks and stood there thinking. After a few minutes of standing there he decided that he should tell Gadget how he felt. As he walked toward her workshop he began to feel queasy and nervous. Part of him just wanted to run away and forget all about it, but he continued forward. He stopped out side the door and lightly tapped on it.
"Come in," came Gadgets sweet voice.
Still a chance to leave, came a voice from deep inside his head. He ignored it and pushed the door open. He entered and saw Gadget at her workbench drawing up some blueprints. She looked up at him.
"Hi Chip!" she said with a smile.
"Hello Gadget," he walked over next to her looked at the blueprints. "Working on the new Rangerwing again?
"Yeah, I got some new ideas for it."
"Gadget, there is something I have to tell you," he said his voice quivering a little.
"What is it Chip?" she put down her pencil and looked at him, noting the change in his voice.
"Gadget. Ever since I first laid eyes on you I have loved you. As the time past and we worked together I knew I loved you even more. Every single day that goes by my love for you grows," the words quickly gushed out of him.
"Ch Chip I dont know what to say this is all so so sudden," she said, sounding quite surprised. "Im very flattered, but Im not sure how I feel about you. I care about you as a friend, but beyond that Im not sure " she paused for a moment to hug him gently. "But Im willing to find out."
Chip breathed a big sigh of relief. He did not expect her to fall into his arms. But at least it was not a flat out rejection. Maybe in time there could be something between the two. "So would you be willing to go out to diner sometime?" he asked tentatively.
"You bet I would," she said with a nervous smile.
"Good, then Ill let you get back to your work," he turned and walked out of her workshop with a large smile on his face. Chip reflected on the events of the past few days. Their worst enemies had banded together and formed a team to oppose them. One of the members had been a friend from his childhood. They had successful brought a halt to the evil plans. The only life that had been lost during the whole ordeal was that of Kyles.
Chip had the felling that Kyles death would always haunt him. But it was not at the front of his mind right now. The only thing on his mind right now was Gadget. Who knows what the future holds for them? Only time will tell.
Authors Note: Woo-Hoo Im finally done. It is January 9th at 6:30 PM (PST). Well I never thought that I would make it. In fact I am so happy that I finished it me and cousin Larry did the dance of joy. At one point I had such a case of writers block that I had just given up hope of ever finishing it. But I did get over that and once I did nothing could have stopped me. I did the majority of the work over Christmas Vacation. And not a minute to soon because I go back to college in two days. Well, what did you think? I hope you liked it. Write to tell me if you loved it, hated it, or think that I should be locked up in the loony bin. I wanted to do something different with my story, I knew I could never write a pure romance or a really serious story. So I opted to do something that I am very familiar with. I did a comic book type of story. In fact, all throughout this story there are secret references to comic book story lines. To write this, I did Dales type of research, I read a bunch of comic books. Some of the names and places used in this story are in fact borrowed from comic books. I just had to put in that scene where Dale is commenting on some comic books If you are wondering the Revenge Squad will most definitely return with a few new members. But I encourage all of you to write stories using the Revenge Squad.
As to the ending I had decided to leave it like that because I have another story planned and I did not know how to write a full blown relationship between Chip and Gadget. The next story, which I am keeping under wraps will have another comic book type of plot. In my mind the true love between the two will have to take time to grow.
I would like to give special thanks to a few people for making this all possible. First of all to all the people who run Rescue Ranger pages. Especially Robert Hollingshead and Karen Mollett. I give special thanks to Karen for helping me get my web page set up. I also would like to thank other Rescue Rangers authors for allowing me to run my ideas by them. Two of them that had been a big help with this story are Chris "Malachite" Sweeters and Roy Neil Grissom. Also I would like to thank each and everyone of the Rescue Rangers fans out there. You are the ones that keep it alive by visiting the web sites and reading the Fan Fictions. And a final big, big, big thank you has to go out to Chip Lundsmark my editor. Where would I be without him? I have terrible grammar. I stink at punctuation and all that kind of stuff. So I would really like to thank you Chip. I know I really had him working over time editing this puppy.
Disclaimer: The Rescue Rangers, Foxglove, Fat Cat, Bubbles, Rat Capone, and Desa'rae Delure are property of Disney and used without permission. S.T.A.R. Labs, Strykers Island, JLA, Hyperclan, The Pale Martians and Intergang are property of DC Comics also used without permission. Thunderbolts and The Masters Of Evil are property of Marvel Comics yet again used without permission "Tell Her About It" Is the property of Billy Joel and was put out by CBS Records.
Kyle Laurel and Erick Rosebush are creations of John Davidson.
Editors Note: Hi, The Editor here. I have just finished editing this story. 3:45 AM (Eastern Time), March 23, 1998. I just wanted to say this sorry it took so long to edit, but darn it, he DOES have bad grammar! (To be truthful, I probably screwed up on a few things too, but its better now. Trust me.) Anyway, There were some other excuses. (power crash after working for hours without backing up, reading it twice to make sure it was all done right, figuring out how to get this story onto his page, and having a job to name a few) But you dont want to hear about em. [oh, you already did! :) ] Hope you had a good time reading this, my next work will be with Karen Mollet and a continuation of my JediChipmunk stuff. (See Kats Scratching Post) See ya around. Chip Lundsmark Lundsmark@MSN.com
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