SPIN: SUB-MEDITERRANEAN SEAWRECK BALOO
story by jb
The following story is based on the television series, characters and situations
created by Jymn Magon & Mark Zaslove, Tale
Spin © 1990, 1991 Walt Disney Company/Buena Vista Television. Fan-fiction
story and non-Tale Spin characters are
creations of the author and may not be used without permission. This is a work
of fan-fiction using characters and property of the Walt Disney Company without
consent and for non-profit use.
“C’mon, ladies!” shouted Baloo. “Let’s go free the Cap’n!”
The pilot and the vixen were making their move away from the on-deck battle on the Prowler now at hand, but it was Rebecca who stood her ground, watching the Moltese Guardian Leader lead his men against the Air Pirates that gave a thrilling rush to her senses. Baloo looked back when he noticed that his employer wasn’t with them and saw her still standing there, watching in absolute awe like a sports spectator.
With a grunt, he returned, grabbed her by wrist and pulled her away from the scene, saying impatiently: “C’mon, Beck! This ain’t no pirate movie we’re watchin’!”
“Isn’t he dashing?” she sighed dreamily, not taking her eyes off
Avoiding the fight between the Air Pirates and the Guardians of Molta, the three of them rushed past to head for the holding brig that housed Captain Hotspur. Karnage, fighting back some of the Guardians, who managed to spot them; panicked with rage.
“Stop them!!” he ordered his men. “They’re after the treasure!”
Running further down the deck, Baloo said to his companions: “I think we lost ‘em!”
But turning around a corner, their pathway was blocked by a medium-sized group of very mean-looking corsairs. The big pilot gulped and laughed nervously.
“Heh-heh-heh,” laughed a scruffy-looking jackal pirate. “Looks like we caught a creampuff and two helpless dames!”
“Yeah,” one of them, an Afurkaner Wild Dog, added, “he’s pretty puffy alright!”
Incensed by that remark, Baloo balled up his huge fist and decked the cocky jackal clear off his feet, right overboard and sent him into the water below screaming.
He shouted before turning his attention to handle some more pirates: “Looks like the ‘creampuff’ jus’ creamed ya!”
“‘Helpless dames?’…” Rebecca said, raising an angry eyebrow at the Air Pirates that now surrounded her and the archaeologist. “Mister, you couldn’t be more wrong.”
“C’mon, Tiny,” the Wild Dog pirate said patronizingly. “Make it easy on yourself.”
“You know, Katie…I never met so many stupid people in one day.”
“Yeah,” her friend agreed. “And ugly, too.”
The look on the pirates grew uglier than usual hearing that. One of them, a huge hulk of a bear, marched right up to the vixen and got right into her face.
“You oughta watch that tongue of yours, girlie, or it’s gonna get ripped clean right outta yer mouth,” he said slowly and menacingly. Katie returned with an unflinching stone cold glare right at him in defiance.
“Yeah!” encouraged one of them. “Teach ‘er how to behave, Bongo!”
As Bongo raised his fist, the vixen swiftly slammed an upper cut palm to the bruin’s chin then conducted a flying roundhouse kick at her opponent’s torso area that sent him hurling across the deck and crashing into some of his comrades.
“I know how to behave, Bongo,” she replied coolly.
Some pirates were backing the businesswoman right up against the nearest corner, with the Afurkaner Wild Dog leading them, but she refused to show any fear. Giving her a frightening leer, he hissed in his Afurkaner drawl: “Well, we’re not gonna be so nice with you, baby.”
Rebecca then noticed next to her was two rag-mops standing in an empty metal bucket. Thinking quickly, she grabbed one of the mops by the handle, gave a sweeping upward swing to one brigand’s chin that sent him backwards, slopped-whacked another very hard across the face then drove back the remainder with a few circular motions with the makeshift weapon defensively before finally thrusting the bristle end defensively at them, her eyes narrowed in determination.
“Nobody puts ‘Baby’ in a corner, buster!”
The marauders charged at the she-bear, who then ran with the mop and slammed the bristle end firmly on the deck, pole-vaulted upwards with a high battle cry but not letting go of the handle, made a mid-air leg split and the two taller pirates met the business end of her heels in their faces, knocking them down. Landing on the deck, Rebecca spun around to face the Wild Dog, who brandished out a gun that sounded off a deadly click. First she knocked the firearm out of his hand with the mop, who then proceeded to swipe at her but missed as she then spiralled downwards and under-kicked beneath his ankles that made him crash onto the deck, blacking out.
“And don’t call me ‘Tiny,’” she growled as she got to her feet.
“Hoo-wee!” exclaimed Baloo who had his hands full with one pirate he placed in a headlock and easily slugging out a few pirates here and there, all the while watching in sincere admiration of the ladies’ martial prowess, in particular of his employer’s. “There’s nuthin’ like a gal that can cook an’ clean!”
Wasting no time, the she-bear hurried back to the bucket, took the other rag-mop and called out to the vixen: “Katie! CATCH!!”
Tossing the mop towards her, the archaeologist saw it coming, snatched it in mid-air and quickly slammed it into the face of an oncoming attacker in full force, who fell back instantly.
Then came a grisly growl from behind her, which Katie turned cautiously and saw the return of Bongo, the pirate whom she had first taken out; only with two other bruin companions and all three of them were carrying very big clubs.
“Hey, girlie!” Bongo called out. “Meet my brothers, Mongo an’ Zongo.”
“Yeah,” said Mongo, standing on the left side. “An’ we’re gonna clean your clocks!”
Zongo only smacked his club firmly into his palm, punctuated with a grunt.
Katie and Rebecca, who had just joined the vixen; looked baffled at each other and mouthed the words: Mongo and Zongo?
The three bears surrounded the women and the two of them went back to back circling in a clockwise pattern, holding up their mops in defence.
“Great,” Katie commented disdainfully at their opponents. “From Cro-Magnon to Neanderthal. The evolutionary process takes a tumble down to Piltdown.”
Not knowing what any of those words meant, Bongo took it as an insult anyway, saying: “Ya got quite a hook there, babe…anybody ever mistaken you for a man?”
“No… how about you?”
Mongo snarled darkly: “Dames or no dames, yer both gonna spit teeth!”
That reminds me, Rebecca thought, I’ve got to upgrade Hire for Higher’s dental insurance plan when I get home…
Zongo, on the right and definitely the dullest of the three, lunged first with his club at the she-bear, who in turn with a battle cry blocked the blow with her mop, then pivoted the handle bottom directly into the brigand’s stomach, causing him to double over in pain, then elbowed him in the left cheek and finally felled the giant with a bop on the head, knocking him out.
Twirling her own mop like a majorette’s baton, Katie took on the other two bears by clashing with Mongo’s club to the right and Bongo’s on the left. Mongo made another swipe at the vixen’s head that clipped her ear, making her yelp in pain. Growling, she twirled around, went backwards a bit and managed to get him right in the ribcage with the shaft, sent him crashing into the ship’s railing, then flipping over and plunging right into the sea. Bongo whipped around to face his opponent, but in doing so found himself getting a mouthful of the mop strings that Katie stuffed it with and rolled it around inside a few times before pulling it out with a popping sound, much to his chagrin.
“Hey!” he shouted, spitting out the foul-tasting strings. “No fair playin’ dirty!”
“Aw, shut up!” she sneered.
“Your teeth needed a good brushing
– not to mention getting rid of your bad breath!”
Now consumed with rage, Bongo charged at her in full force. Katie ran towards him too, only she leapt about a few paces before the bear, sailed through the air and cleanly whacked him good and hard across the jaw with the mop, causing him to be knocked off his feet and knocking him backwards onto the deck where his head landed first, where he finally slipped into unconsciousness.
The redhead landed on her feet, turned and was pleased to see saw her opponent was defeated.
Master Yuen would say: “The harder they come, the harder they fall!”
“I never knew that mopping could be so much fun, Rebecca!”
The businesswoman grinned back at her. “Neither did I!”
Baloo had successfully ploughed his way through the last remaining Air Pirates on his watch easily with his huge fists until he grabbed one canine and readied to punch him straight into next week who then begged: “Y-y-yipe! Hold it, tubby! I-I-I was gonna hit ya, b-b-but I didn’t!!”
The pilot just grinned maliciously, saying: “Fer that li’l courtesy, you get the biiiig prize!”
Picking him up with one hand, Baloo held up the pirate momentarily, hurled him like a football across the deck and the hapless canine landed buttocks-first into a nearby air-scoop ventilator, struggling hopelessly to get free.
The grey bear dusted his palms as he walked away. “Bulls-eye!! You’ve won yerself a butt-buffer!”
As the last standing Air Pirate trembled in fear of the three before him, Baloo noted: “There’s the last one…either of you gals wanna handle him?”
“Nah, I’m good,” Katie said. “Rebecca?”
“Nope. Be our guest… Iron Paws.”
Paws…I kinda like that name!
“With pleasure, Boss Lady,” the pilot smirked, loudly cracking his knuckles into one palm. The pirate immediately dropped his weapons and scampered off, howling for his mother.
“Ladies,” Baloo laughed boisterously, “we make a swell team!”
Rebecca jokingly made a face at him. “No, we don’t.”
“But, Rebecca and I do,” chuckled Katie, as they gave each other a high-five slap.
The grey bear looked around at the pile of unconscious pirates lying at their feet and then his face brightened.
“Hey, strip these two guys down to their skivvies.”
His employer was shocked.
He winked at her as he took the
fallen pirates’ weapons. “I got me an idea.”
“Ghal il Misser, Salib u Molta!!! For the Father, Cross and Molta!!!”
The clash between the Air Pirates and the Guardians grew fierce. Jordan and others were suddenly hunkered down behind some metal barrels after the pirates had found a new supply of bullets and began to fire at them, whose swords were no match for guns. They had managed to free some of the Prowler’s crewmembers that had joined them from behind the barrels for their protection.
“We’re just sitting ducks out here!” shouted the Prowler First Mate Troy to Amante over the whiz of bullets snapping above their heads and ricocheting off the barrels. “We must get to the arms locker!”
“How do we get there?!”
“If you can provide cover for me and some of my men, we can get to that doorway into the ship and collect enough rifles to counter them!”
“All right then! My men will block some of the pirates’ fire with our shields and barrels, while the others will accompany you with cover!”
“Sounds good to me!”
“Okay! I’ll signal my men to block the pirates and get ready to move on my word! Amante – you’re going with them! Protect these men with your lives! It’s the only chance we have to save the Cache from these bounders!”
“Yes, Grand Leader!”
“On the count of four,” barked the Moltese to his shielded Guardians over the din, “you block and charge! Get as close to the pirates as best you can and for as long as possible – we will follow!”
Nodding their heads, he turned
to Amante and
“Get ready, men! On the count of three…one…two…three!”
With a rise and a cry, the shielded Guardians ran forward with the ones pushing barrels, bullets bouncing off of metal and ricocheted sparks flying everywhere.
Karnage saw the breakaway and shouted to his pirates: “Shoot at them, you ninnies!”
But his order came too late. By
the time the first bullets approached them, Amante and
“Man, why does Khanny always gotta build his ships so gul-darned big?” muttered Baloo aloud. The three were now in the bowels of the Prowler and had sort of lost their way searching for the holding brig that kept Captain Hotspur hostage.
“It’s a Freudian thing,” said Katie, looking around with disdain. “You wouldn’t understand.”
“What’s fraud got to do with
“I rest my case,” the vixen smirked to the she-bear, who was stifling a giggle over her pilot’s ignorance.
“Hold it!” he hushed them then, backing up a bit around a corner. “I think we found the brig!”
The women peeked around the bend with Baloo and there stood two Air Pirates guarding the door.
“Great,” whispered Rebecca. “Two of Karnage’s idiots – and armed. What’s your plan now, Baloo?”
Her pilot then presented the clothes of the two pirates they had overcome earlier on deck that he was carrying under his arm and said: “Suit up, ladies.”
The businesswoman and the archaeologist looked at each other uneasily at first, but they figured what he had in mind. Taking the clothes and putting them on over their own, Katie said quietly: “You think dressing up like pirates and relieving the guards will work?”
“If all else fails, we’ll go ta Plan ‘B’.”
“What’s Plan ‘B’?” asked Rebecca, zipping up a pirate’s jacket.
“How do I know? I’m jus’ makin’ this up as I go along.”
The she-bear just closed her eyes and sighed, continued dressing.
The vixen tucked her red locks under a flying cap and goggles, strapped on a holster and joked: “This is one thing they never taught me in archaeology. I’m going to have a long, long talk with my mentor after this is all over, provided I can find him.”
“Where is he now?” queried the she-bear.
“In Kneepal with his daughter,
last I heard. Something about searching for an
“You gals look rarin’ ta go. Ya ready?”
“Wait!” said Rebecca. “What about my hair?”
The pilot studied at her for a second and then promptly placed his treasured pilot’s hat on her head. She felt honoured and a little flushed, if not touched, by his gesture.
“Jus’ don’ get it fulla bullet holes, Beckers, that’s all,” he advised with a smile.
“Come on, you two,” prompted Katie a little hurriedly. “We can’t expect Jordan and his Guardians to hold off Don Karnage forever, unless help arrives on time!”
“Let’s go,” whispered the grey pilot, “an’ act manly, ladies.”
The two guards saw Baloo with his hands held up high and being marched by gunpoint by the disguised women, his hands held up in the air in surrender.
“Halt! Who goes there?” asked the first guard, a dog.
Rebecca cleared her throat and lowered her octaves a few notches down, saying: “Uhm…we’re Roe and Wade, send to relieve you and place this prisoner with Captain Hotspur. Karnage’s orders!”
“I didn’t hear about being relieved at anytime,” asked the other, a scruffy-looking tabby with an eye patch.
“Are you questioning the captain’s orders?” spoke the vixen in an equally gruff voice.
“Of course…not,” replied the feline a bit nervously and then looked at them. “Say…how come I haven’t seen you guys before?”
“We’re…new recruits!” Rebecca explained. “Just joined you three weeks ago!”
“Yeah!” Katie added.
The dog eyed the archaeologist. “You look kinda different for a new recruit.”
Realising he was looking at her chest, the vixen responded: “I…I bench-press my own weight, buddy!” She accented this with a hork and spat on the deck soundly. “A lot!”
Oh, brother, thought Baloo, trying very hard not roll his eyes in case it gave them away.
“And you sound real funny to me,” the cat guard addressed Rebecca.
She started to get very sweaty and nervous, so she coughed a few times and explained to her inquisitor: “I’ve been recovering from a bad cold, that’s all.”
The guards had looks on their faces that weren’t buying anything what was coming from this poor excuse of a Vaudeville act in front of them. Moving closer, both canine and feline pointed their weapons at them.
“I think we’ve got ourselves a couple impostors here, matey,” said the dog.
Rebecca exhaled a resigned sigh and turned to the grey bear, saying in her normal voice: “Plan ‘B’?”
“Plan ‘B’??” repeated the cat.
“Plan ‘B,’” affirmed Baloo and the husky pilot very quickly took both guards by the heads, slammed both their skulls together, knocking them senseless and collapsing onto the floor in a heap.
“That was your Plan ‘B’?” said Rebecca incredulously. “Knocking them out?!”
Baloo shrugged. “It worked, didn’t it? Now let’s tie up these two bozos an’ look fer the keys to that brig!”
After a brief frisking, they found them on the feline pirate. While the women busily tied up the guards, Baloo promptly unlocked the brig door and greeted the prisoner inside with: “Cap’n Hotspur, I presume?”
“Baloo!” said the lion captain, rising to his feet. “What just happened out there?”
“Oh, jus’ yer average, ordinary rescue mission, sir.”
“Have we gotten help already?” Hotspur inquired, walking out.
“Not quite, Captain,” grunted the she-bear as she pulled her bound-and-gagged pirate into the brig. “We’ve got a small contingency of the Guardians of Molta fighting against Karnage up on deck, but we don’t know for how long.”
Hotspur looked confused. “The Guardians of what?”
“We’ll explain everything
later,” said the archaeologist impatiently as she hauled her own captive
inside. “Right now, help us get these lugs into here. We’ve got to get the
Cache before Karnage takes off with it!”
Kit felt a little light-headed for a brief moment as he flew with Khan’s Elite Pilot Squadron towards the Prowler. He shook his head a bit and squeezed his eyelids tightly, trying hard to stay alert.
“Are you feeling okay, Kit?” asked Melita worriedly.
“I’ll be alright…just a…little tired,” answered the young pilot carefully, avoiding the word “dizzy.”
“I warned you about flying
with that nasty bump on your head…”
“I said, I’ll be alright,” he repeated irritably. Jeez! Who is she, my mother?! Becky’s enough as it is!
“She was only concerned about you,” said the she-canine, touching his shoulder tenderly. “And so am I.”
Kit’s features softened after that and turned to his two friends. “I…I’m sorry,” he apologized. “I’m just worried about Baloo and Rebecca…I just want to get back to them, that’s all.”
“All right, all right!” he confessed with a laboured sigh. “I admit…I’m a little dizzy, too.”
“Fly lower then,” suggested Molly, sitting in the navigator’s seat. “That’s what Mom does whenever she starts feeling tired when she takes flying lessons from Baloo.”
“Okay, okay, I’ll drop a few altitudes then. We’ll make it to the Prowler in one piece, I promise.”
As the Sea Duck lowered a bit below the convoy, the squadron captain radioed the Con-Wing.
“Sea Duck, is everything alright? You seem to be lagging behind us, over.”
“All is fine, Captain. I’m just…conserving fuel. I had quite a dogfight on the way to the Swiftsure, you know, over.”
I saw you flying out there and you’re good, Kit. If you ever get tired of
flying cargo when you’re older….I’d like to have you fly with us. I can
personally recommend you to Mister Khan on your behalf, over.”
Kit smiled. “Thanks, Captain. I’ll take that into consideration. How much longer ‘til we reach the Prowler? Over.”
“Estimated time at our current speed: ten minutes. Over.”
thank you, I prefer my sword – it’s a family heirloom.”
well, suit yourself,”
down the corridors to aid their comrades up on deck, the Prowler and Guardians’ team leaders after awhile collided into
something that felt soft and heavy that went: “OOOF!!”
themselves up from the deck, they both recognized the object they had literally
ran into and exclaimed…
Prowler First Mate saw the others in
his company and along with his fellow sailors, snapped into a sharp salute.
“C-captain! You’ve been freed! Thank goodness!”
the courtesies for later,
the Guardians of Molta have freed some of us and helped us in getting to the
weapons storage room just now and we were prepared to take on the Air Pirates.
We wait for your orders, sir!”
does Khanny get his sailors from?” Baloo muttered. “Military surplus?”
gave her pilot a sharp, warning jab to the stomach that silenced him while
Captain Hotspur thought very quickly and gave his orders.
split into two teams. Troy, you lead seven from your detail and go to the upper
left deck to take position and standby for my order to open fire. I’ll take
the rest and have them head to the upper right – and remember, no
one fires unless I say so. Understood?”
Miss Cunningham, Doctor Dodd, you’re with me for your own protection.
Guardians, we would very much appreciate your assistance with your own available
with me, Captain,” said Amante.
yer ship. Lead the way, mon cappy-tan.”
Captain,” said Katie. “But we must
hurry now – the Cache of Molta’s still out in the open!”
they made their way to face the battle ahead, Hotspur asked the two bears: “Is
she always this impatient?”
said the pilot.
“I heard that!” the vixen protested.
flying and swords with battle shields clashing, the Air Pirates and Moltese
Guardians were fully engaged in a knock-them-down, drawn-out brawl on the upper
main deck of the Prowler. In the midst
of it all, their leaders Jordan Ducina and Don Karnage regarded each other,
almost seeing into the other’s mind.
Karnage, formerly Don Juan Carlos; had lured the Guardians of Molta into
invading and stopping the fascist Nationalists’ dastardly plan to attack the
mainland Iberian Republic with an armed airship unlike ever seen or created –
that would unfortunately be made up for with the bombing at Gernika much later
on during their Civil War – but the mission to destroy it was all false.
had been with his father, Gabriel Ducina, in the mission as a
Guardian-in-training, merely a boy approaching manhood. He sensed something was
wrong from the start. Although they had overcome the guards and construction
workers that were building the airship, it seemed a bit easy to be able to take
on lightly-armed soldiers and defenceless workers in that cavernous hideaway in
bit too easy...
they approached the airship that would become the dreaded Iron Vulture in order to destroy it,
suddenly the “soldiers” that they had tied up behind them had gotten loose
from their confines somehow and were right behind the Guardians when Carlos, a
few steps ahead of them; shouted: “Okay, my men – fire!”
ambush!!” someone yelled. “We’ve been betrayed!”
screamed from behind, felling a few. Trying to find cover the best they could,
the Guardians fought back; but they were pinned down by fire and to make matters
worse, grenades were dropped upon the pockets of resistance. Jordan had been
behind one particular party that got bombed upon, killing a handful and wounding
him with pieces of shrapnel in his one of his legs. The youth fell down in
agony, but nothing more agonizing than what he witnessed before him...
father and Carlos were standing confrontationally at each other amidst the chaos
about them. Angered by the betrayal from his most promising Guardian, the Grand
Leader and the lupine traitor engaged in conversation.
should have seen it coming all along, Don Juan – driven by greed and
ambition,” shouted the Grand Leader. “Now you have become the very thing you
swore to destroy!”
be lecturing to me, Gabriel! I be seeing through the lies of the Guardians by
holding me backwards! I do not have fearing from my own ambitions of what
we could become – now I shall take it with my own men and myself! Join
with me, Grand Leader, and we could become richer than richer men!”
My allegiance is to the Order…to democracy! The very democracy that the
Fascists are going to destroy! And we were once pirates before, if you
remember, and we will not go back into that again!”
you are not with me, then you’re my enemy!”
the truly evil deal in absolutes,” the elder Ducina sighed, shaking his head
sadly and drawing his sword. “I will do what I must, Don Juan.”
Juan?” said Carlos, grinning viciously as he drew his own cutlass. “Don Juan
Carlos died alone in that sour gas-laden trench in abandonment years ago! I am
now…um...Karnage! Don Karnage! With a ‘k’! Hey, that’s sounding
pretty good there! I should write that down!”
write it on your tombstone, traitor.”
two Guardians then got into a heated swordfight. Jordan struggled to crawl to
the nearest weapon to help his father, but the pain in his leg made this task
hopeless. The Grand Leader held himself defensively, but the younger ex-Guardian
was much too quick. Catching a position down, Karnage used the hand guard to
bash the Moltese canine’s muzzle, weakening him completely and then he
delivered the mortal wound that sealed his fate, crumbling to the ground.
back his cutlass, Karnage sneered satisfactorily over the Grand Leader’s
lifeless body, giving it a solid kick with his foot.
always were such a foolish-type person, Gabriel, yes-no?” he said. Then
turning to his men, the wolf raised his voice: “Men! Fall back! Fall back into
the airship! We must skedaddly away from this place! There’s a whole new world
for us to be a-plundering and the Guardians will be no more, si?”
a few minutes, the aerodrome snapped from its tethers and headed upwards into
the sky hovering above through the open entrance, heavily dusting the emaciated
Guardians of Molta. Karnage spoke from the external speakers that boomed into
the ears of the survivors, especially that of the teary-eyed canine who managed
to crawl over to his father: “Just a reminder that you don’t be forgetting
me now, that this is Don Karnage addressing to you in my own marvellous
voice! Just roll the ‘r,’ and
put a ‘k’ in front of ‘carnage’ okee-dokee? Arriverderci,
and one more little thingie,” Karnage added, “in casing that you are think
about getting revenge on me, here’s a little souveniric assurance to
take with you to your gravesites! Bwaa-ha-ha-ha!!!”
up, the younger Ducina saw in horror the bomb bay doors open and saw a plethora
of bombs spilling out of the airship. Screaming out to his surviving comrades to
fall back, Jordan hobbled as quickly as he could out of the way despite the
excruciating pain, reluctantly leaving his father’s corpse behind but taking
his sword with him; as the projectiles slammed into the cave, shattering and
showering rocks, dust and dirt everywhere, encasing him in darkness and debris
that he and only ten other Guardians would live to tell about the betrayal at
Isla de Alboran-over…
pirate leader now brandished his cutlass and pointed it towards the current
leader of the Guardians of Molta, which prompted him to follow suit. Coming
together, they stood in a silent defensive stance until Karnage spoke: “You
will soon be joining your father,
young Ducina! I will personally see to
a flash of steel and swath of blades, a duel between the rivals was at hand.
Both concentrating on their own and each others’ moves, the Moltese noticed
that the wolf pirate leader had been a little out of practice with his
swordsmanship and was now more of a “flash and brass” type of swordfighter,
mainly for show and effect much like a stage actor with a prop weapon, taking
advantage of his opponent’s inability to put up a real fight…
armed canine Air Pirates that were guarding the Cache of Molta nearby, watched
the swordfight before them until they heard a seductive feminine whistle from
behind them. Turning around, they saw a long, elegant and shapely bare leg
sticking out from a corner with a hand above it and a finger temptingly
losing what little common sense they possessed – and the fact they hadn’t
seen a woman in over six months – the brigands were instantly seduced by the
attractive appendage, dropped their weapons and blindly followed the hand,
drooling and slobbering with anticipation as the leg retracted away.
around that corner, they unexpectedly saw a whole bunch of stars explode in
their heads and then drifted into complete unconsciousness with comical-looking
expressions of bliss etched on their faces as they fell onto the deck.
that’s what I call a leg ta fall
for!” said Baloo, holding an empty and newly-dented sand bucket that he used
to knock out the pirates with. “Thanks fer the use of the gam, Red!”
Katie grinned, slipping on her sock and rolling her pant leg back down to her
ankle. “The Cache’s ours again – and the box containing the Moltese
Eagle’s still there!”
men can be so typical, right,
Captain?” Rebecca commented. When she got no response, she turned around and
to her surprise saw that Captain Hotspur and the other men on his team were too
still transfixed by the vixen’s recent exposed leg with their eyes glazed
Snap out of it!” the businesswoman barked, snapping her fingers repeatedly
which brought them all back to their senses instantaneously.
Um, ah…sorry, Miss Cunningham,”
Hotspur replied a little feloniously. “We…haven’t had shore leave for a
I noticed,” she muttered. Men!
the Moltese made an upper stroke, the wolf pirate slashed him downwards from his
chest to his abdomen. The Guardian leader cried out, dropping to the deck along
with his sword and grabbing his wound. Thankfully, the cut wasn’t fatal but it
did put him at Karnage’s mercy.
that wasn’t going to happen...
the cutlass over
Guardian shish-kabobby, coming right
up!” he shouted gleefully, raising his sword.
shot rang out above the buccaneer’s head and suddenly felt his cutlass blade
vibrate so violently from his hand that he let go and it fell onto the deck.
Cradling his aching wrist, he looked up to see several armed men on the upper
decks, rifles aimed upon him and his men. The multitude of clicking rifles
filled the air, forcing everyone to stop fighting immediately.
Karny!” bellowed a jovial voice.
“Ya better quit while yer way
was with Rebecca, Katie, Captain Hotspur, two divisions of Khan’s crewmembers
and Amante’s Guardian team, now standing around the remaining still-bound
comrades and guarding the prized Cache of Molta, much to his utter dismay.
like yer out-manned, out-gunned an’ out-smarted
again. Now why don’t ya surrender like a good li’l pirate an’ call it a
pirate leader just gnashed his teeth and quickly cocked his pistol that he
whipped out from his holster, shouting: “Never!
The pirates of Don Karnage do not
retreat nor surrender to anyone!
And besides,” he added, now pointing his gun at Jordan’s head who was still
clutching at his chest wound, “I have this
bargaining poker chip here to play with, yes-no?”
thunderous roar from above then sounded off the forward bow and to his shock,
Karnage saw Khan’s Elite Pilot Squadron bolt from the skies, approaching his
still-crippled Iron Vulture.
Captain to the Swiftsure! We have reached the Prowler and are in full view of
the Air Pirates! We are waiting for your orders, Mister Khan, over!”
acknowledged Khan over the captain’s speaker and then ordered coldly: “Get
those pirates off my ship and out of my skies. Over.”
pleasure, sir! Captain, over and
over and out.”
into formation, the Elite Pilot Squadron Captain addressed his subordinates:
“You heard the man, boys – let’s earn out pay. Sea Duck, you keep your
distance and let us do our job, okay? Over.”
all means, Captain,”
Kit replied. “Sea Duck, over and out.”
the squadron concentrated on the Iron
Vulture, giving it a sound pummelling against the partially-operational
aircraft who were hopelessly trying to defend themselves as best as they could,
while a couple of fighter planes soared above the deck of the Prowler
in a show of force, firing a few warning shots overhead of the Air Pirates. All
that Karnage could do was just stand there dumbfounded with his mouth agape.
again,” he said slowly, “retreat is
not being such a bad idea at all…”
began Mad Dog, standing beside him. “But, Boss, I thought you just said –”
mind what I just said, you pointed-headed idiot!” shouted the wolf leader in
agitated panic. “Just do as I say!
Hit the road! Scram! Run for your hides! Vamoose!
Agitate the asphalt! Run away!”
the remaining Air Pirates raced for their docked planes by the docking moor, the
grey bear guffawed after them: “Bye-bye, Karny! Better luck next time!”
spun around to face his arch-nemesis briefly to say: “Believe me, Baloo, there will
be a next time! Count on it!”
theatrically jumped right over the railing, right into the cockpit of Mad
Dog’s plane with the mangy pirate upfront at the controls, where him and the
other brigands took off into the skies with the Iron
Vulture tailing them away from the Elite Pilot Squad chasing them off.
Everyone onboard cheered at the retreat of the Air Pirates, including on the Sea
Captain Hotspur and a couple of armed seamen and Guardians checked the artefacts
of the Cache of Molta to see they were all accounted for, Katie joyously
embraced Baloo which he did in return.
did it, Baloo! We beat them! The Cache of Molta is safe once more!”
Sure did, Red!” Then he remembered his boss. “Say, where is Beckers?”
like she got a friend to tend to right now,” she said grinning, seeing that
Rebecca was already at Jordan’s side, cradling his head gently in her lap, and
looking at him with adoring eyes and caressing his head; much to the large
live…you ladies are certainly brave enough to stand up to the Air Pirates in a
fight, Rebecca. You remind me of my sister and my wife.”
she-bear turned pale. “W-w-wife?”
My wife, Bianca. We’re also expecting a baby soon.”
wife and a baby, too?
threw up her arms in exasperation and got up to her feet, unwittingly causing
are all the good ones always
taken?!” she bitterly complained aloud.
landed the Sea Duck on the deck,
coming to a halt before the ship’s air hangar doorway. The pilot’s side door
swung wide open and out jumped down the navigator, with Baloo, Rebecca and Katie
rushing towards the boy who staggered and holding his head.
he cried out with tears coming down his face as the three bears embraced each
other tightly. “Thank goodness
you’re both alright!”
Britches, ya crazy ol’ ace, you! You feelin’ alright, son?”
been better,” Kit answered, before a sudden dizzy spell made him keel over in
the huge pilot’s arms, “although…I could…take a nap right
there, Kit-boy,” said the grey bear worriedly. “Ya got one nasty bump on yer
noggin. Better let someone take a good look at it.”
what I’ve tried to tell him, Baloo,” said
he said, giving both the vixen and she-canine a careful group embrace, then
taking a good look at the petite archaeologist’s bedraggled appearance. “Man
oh man, what happened to the other
Aridian just grinned. “Oh, I took a piece of him. And if you’re lucky, you
just might find it somewhere onboard.”
grinned back uneasily. “Uh…I’ll just take an l’il ol’ rain-check, if
ya don’t mind, ‘kay?”
then broke away from the three and rushed over to her brother’s side
surrounded by the other Guardians including his second-in-command, Amante.
Seeing the worried Dame, the ship’s doctor was already attending to him among
the other wounded crew, Guardians and left-behind pirates being collected for
be alright,” assured the lynx medic. “It’s just a flesh wound. But we’ll
get him to sick bay soon.”
“An’ count this one in too,” said Baloo, carrying the half-conscious Kit in his arms and placing him down next to the Grand Leader. “He’s got a mild concussion.”
the navigator began, “I really can’t take all the credit…”
what about me? I helped too!”
turned to the voice. “Molly?!”
The she-bear cub charged right into her mother’s arms.
Elizabeth Cunningham, what are you doing
here? How did you get here?! What
do you mean you helped?” Her mother sniffed her for a moment before
concluding: “And why do you smell like Barbeque Luau Night at Louie’s, young lady?”
Realizing that there was a very serous tone in her mother’s voice, Molly knew she was in really big trouble right now. “Okay…you see, Mom, it’s a long, long story…”
disagreement had erupted in the Prowler’s
sick bay, where
Give up the Cache of Molta?” Katie raised her voice. “You can’t be serious!”
– don’t wake up the whole dormitory,” said the doctor who was still
tending to the back of the Grand Leader’s head which had a huge bump, thanks
the Cache is the sole property of our ancestors,”
does have a valid point there, Red,” Baloo agreed.
sympathize, Baloo. I really and truly do, but I got permission from the colonial government of Molta to excavate
and study for my university, not for the Guardians! Not to mention the fact that
Khan Industries bankrolled for this particular venture itself!”
observant, Doctor Dodd.”
nearly jumped out of her fur as she turned to the voice’s owner behind her.
Khan! What are you doing here?!”
I hate it when he sneaks up on ya like that,” muttered Baloo.
lady, one such as I does not operate
one of the world’s leading corporations by just sitting around in my office
all day long, contrary to any popular rumours that have been said about me. One must
move about. Besides, I had some business dealings in Roma, not to mention
that I was promoting my latest military equipment for a trade show en
route as you can see for yourself,” the tiger said, gesturing to the
aircraft carrier Swiftsure now
situated alongside the Prowler out the
the pilot muttered again, not hiding his disgust or even noticing that his
employer was trying to silence him with a hard glare.
up to the vixen, the powerful tycoon continued: “And I always keep an eye on my investments, Doctor. Now…there isn’t
going to be a problem with the claim over the Cache of Molta…” he
accentuated the point by holding up one palm nonchalantly with the unsheathing
of his razor-sharp talons making a thick air-cutting schwick
in an intimidating manner, “…is
the moment, Rebecca intervened. “Wait a minute, Mister Khan, Katie,
everybody…I’d like to suggest some solutions to this problem, if you don’t
mind. Do you have a private room where we can discuss this?”
raised a curious eyebrow at Rebecca’s take-charge stance with surprised
interest. He’d learned from personal experience in the past not to
underestimate her or her pilot, and the fact that her tone was respectful
didn’t hurt either.
a matter of fact, I do. I am willing to hear your suggestions, Miss
Seeing she was outvoted two-to-one, Katie sighed. “Okay, me too.”
the Prowler and Swiftsure sailed for Molta’s
you please stop pacing, Baloo?” said
been almost four hours. I’ve had
shorter waits at the doctor’s office than this. How long does it hafta take to
compromise over a coupla priceless trinkets?”
our case, we’ve waited centuries,” Amante said to him with Melita nodding in
agreement. “I’m pretty sure that your employer can negotiate a reasonable
agreement between all parties concerned.”
don’t worry about Mom, Baloo,” added Molly. “She can talk her way into
almost anything. You know her.”
yer probably right there, Cupcake. Even ol’ Beckers probably could talk
Cap’n Ahab outta whalin’.” The pilot paused for a moment then stared at
the door, he continued: “I jus’ wish I knew
what was goin’ on in there…”
the conference room, the tough negotiations were coming to a close.
up the Moltese Eagle?!” said Katie. “Forget
it! That’s a major find!”
must fully concede with the good doctor on this one,” Khan added. “It would
be the major attraction for any future travelling exhibit, not to mention the
insurance coverage is worth millions on Khan Banking’s part.”
Moltese Eagle is very…personal to the Guardians,”
the ceremonial throne of the Grand Leader and half of the three hundred rare
silver plates I’m willing to part with, but not
the Eagle! That’s simply out of the
question – period!” Katie
emphatically banged her fist on the negotiating table.
Grand Leader of the Guardians was about to protest again when mediator Rebecca
stepped in, calmly raising both hands. Khan’s trusted secretary Mrs. Snarly was madly taking down everything on a stenograph machine in order to write out
the final agreement later on for the involving parties to sign with fingers
flying; suddenly she jerked her head up at the interruption.
it, hold it, hold it. Let me offer a solution here, people, if I may. I suggest
that the Moltese Eagle be returned – ”
the businesswoman gave the vixen a hard glance, silencing her; then continued:
“– that the Moltese Eagle be returned after
the Cache of Molta has completed its travelling exhibit, including the
ceremonial throne. When the artefacts have been examined, catalogued and toured,
all the contents can be returned in trust to the people of Molta.”
vixen considered it for a moment and said with a little reluctance: “That…
sounds fair to me.”
believe the Order and I can agree to that as well,” said
only one thing that I don’t like
about it, Miss Cunningham,” commented Khan, strumming his fingers together in
others looked at the business magnate in unnerving silence.
that, Mister Khan?” Rebecca asked tentatively.
I didn’t think of it first,” he
replied, a brief smile crossing his deadpan features.
businesswoman wanted to sigh with relief, but feeling she’d lose the moment
she managed to keep her composure and merely said: “Thank you.”
thirty minutes passed, the conference room door finally opened with the she-bear
and vixen beaming along with the others who were exiting out the room, except
for Khan’s customary stoic demeanour.
didja do it, Becky?” said her pilot anxiously. “Didja cut a deal?”
have come to an agreement,” the business tycoon announced from behind her,
“that the Cache of Molta is under the joint care of Khan Industries and the
World Archaeological Society for a seven-year mandate, to which in turn will be
returned to Molta after the findings are catalogued and toured.”
guys! That’s fantastic!” Baloo said, hugging Rebecca that she returned in
you, Rebecca!” said Melita also giving her a hug, while Amante crossed himself
quite welcome, all of you.”
all well that end’s well, huh?” Baloo yawned then and proceeded to head down
the corridor. “I’m gonna get me some well-earned shuteye. Nighty-night,
snorted Rebecca in sarcastic surprise, “I’d thought you’d be getting
something to eat first before anything
else, Fly Boy.”
ta think ‘bout it, that’s a mighty good idea there, Beckers. Anybody needs
me, I’ll be in the mess hall havin’ a li’l ol’
pilot just grinned. “Hey, why wait ‘til the last minute?”
ladies chuckled as the pilot lumbered down the hallway, while the men just
looked on in disbelief.
can that man eat after such a physically and emotionally taxing experience?”
our Baloo for you,” answered the petite vixen. “But believe me, his heart is
a lot bigger than himself. I hope that never changes.”
just shook her head and then turned to Molly. “And as for you, young lady…we have to talk about disobeying me.”
the she-bear cub began uneasily, “do we have to talk about that now,
we do,” said a hulking voice from behind them. Everybody turned to see that it
was the ship’s head cook, Emil, looking at Molly with a jaundiced eye which
made the little girl squirm uncomfortably. “About stealing from my galleys
that should be addressed, ‘Phantom Nibbler’, not to mention being a stowaway
on the ship.”
Melita was a stowaway, too!”
but at least I lived on my own rations
in my sack.”
your permission,” Emil said, “I have perfect solution to work her
what might that be?” Rebecca asked.
will be my temporary kitchen help until we dock into harbour, starting immediately,
sir and madam.”
most wise suggestion. Do you agree, Miss Cunningham?”
fair to me, Mister Khan. Better get to work, Molly.”
But I’m a heroine…right?”
me…your punishment here will be easy
compared to what you’re going to be facing when we get home, ‘heroine’.”
there some child labour laws that could be violated
here, Mother?” Molly begged desperately. “And I think it is way
past my bedtime, right?”
worry, Miss Cunningham,” said the hefty golden retriever, taking the she-bear
cub’s hand firmly but gently. “I will work her hard, but treat her fair.
Now, let’s go, ‘Phantom Nibbler’…since you like mine cooking so much – which I do most appreciate, yes – we’d be having
about ten pounds of potatoes and carrots to peel, two pounds of garlic to crush and
dozens of kitchen utensils to scrub sparkly clean. And when you’re done all
that, little one, I give you real hard
stuff to do....”
she was dragged off to the ship’s galley, all Molly could do was to look back
at the others helplessly and squeak in horror, much to their amused
chuckled lightly, then turned to the ladies and Moltese Guardians, asking: “I
do realize that you’ve all had a most trying day to say the least, but I very
much would like to see the Moltese Eagle.”
we, the Guardians of Molta, would like to come see it too,”
as she was, Katie wasn’t about to argue with anyone. “I don’t see why not.
If you’ll follow me, gentlemen, it is right in the secured holding area
few minutes later, all seven of them were in one of the Prowler’s secured storage rooms where there were two armed guards
both inside and outside the door and corridor. The red-haired vixen carefully
unpackaged the bird statuette and gently placed it on the display table for all
to see. While the Guardians gasped in awe, genuflected before the sacred idol
and murmured reverent praises, the tiger captain of industry remained
emotionless as usual, except for a momentarily raised eyebrow in interest.
yes…most impressive. Congratulations on its hard-earned recovery, Doctor Dodd,
uncharacteristically blushed. “Th-thank you, sir.”
was wondering if we could take a look inside the Eagle?”
and Katie’s hearts skipped an uncomfortable beat as they looked at each other.
And out the corner of the tall vixen’s eye, she swore she could see the same
look on the faces of Jordan, Melita and Amante as well. Did they, too, know the
secret of the Moltese Eagle as well?
she could say was: “S-s-sir?...”
heard stories that the Moltese Eagle contained an important parchment inside a
hidden compartment within. Would it be possible to view it through the ship’s
x-ray machine, Doctor Dodd?”
thought in horror. The scroll!
asked Khan just a little impatiently when all he got from her was silence. “Would
it be possible?”
didn’t know what to do. She wanted to protect the idol’s secrets inside, but
on the other hand she was bound by contract to allow Khan unlimited access to
the recovery of the Cache. Her stomach churned at the thought of him learning
about the scroll, the possible location of the Holy Grail and the ramifications
that could follow if it fell into his hands. She obviously had no choice.
Mister Khan. It’s…quite possible.”
Let’s take it over to sick bay, shall we?”
sir,” she responded as she placed the Eagle inside the box, trying to hide her
reluctance. After escorting the prized statuette under armed guard to sick bay,
Rebecca quietly voiced her concerns to her friend who looked very worried,
she whispered. “If he finds that
know, Rebecca…” the archaeologist whispered back. “I…I don’t know what
to say…I could delay deciphering the map for years, perhaps…” Her voice
faded away with uncertainty.
medical assistants in the sick bay carefully placed the Moltese Eagle in front
of the x-ray screen and prepared to activate the apparatus, while the others
looked on from the lead-lined protective shield they stood behind. The she-bear
nervously twiddled her thumbs, wondering what would happen next.
the screen brightened on the subject before them, the tall vixen gave a quick
gasp that she stifled it so the others couldn’t hear it in time. The
businesswoman looked at the screen as well, just as amazed.
Khan frowned. “It’s empty.”
was right. The image shown on the x-ray screen revealed the narrow-hollowed
cavity of the statuette as clear as day, but only to show the cylindrical
compartment to be void of any object placed inside.
is!” Katie breathed, genuinely
surprised, while Rebecca remained speechless.
theories here, Doctor Dodd?”
don’t know, Mister Khan. Perhaps it was a container, a funerary urn, a certain
design by its creator. Just…another unsolved mystery for the ages, I guess.”
business mogul turned to the three Guardians. “Anything to add to this, Grand
Leader Ducina? Miss Ducina? Commander Amante?”
by the events of the day and also puzzled by the empty Moltese Eagle, all that
the leader could say was: “Sorry, Mister Khan…I have nothing from our
history or intelligence that could possibly explain this.”
she-canine and the raccoon only shrugged in response as well.
yes…” the tiger conceded, rubbing his chin in thought. “Yes. Yes, I
suppose that mystery will be left for the ages as you say, Doctor. Very well
then, I imagine that you are all anxious to retire for the day, so I will allow
it. Ensign, escort the two gentlemen to their quarters.”
said a nearby sailor.
will allow it?” repeated the auburn vixen disbelievingly to the she-bear
in a low tone, while Melita affectionately hugged her brother goodnight before
the ensign guided the two men away to their own room.
to the world of Khan Industries, sister. Your time is his time.”
night, ladies, gentlemen,” Khan politely nodded to others, then walked out of
the x-ray room.
the women left sick bay and walked down the corridor to the VIP staterooms,
Melita questioned, “So where am I going to sleep?”
can bunk with me, Melita, while Katie can still share the same room with
I can put up with another night of her snoring,” Rebecca grinned at the vixen.
smirked in return. “And I can live her hogging the bathroom longer than me.
You two go on ahead. Rebecca and I have some things to…discuss in private.”
don’t hog the bathroom that
much!” the businesswoman mildly protested, then questioned: “Do I?...”
worry, dear. I should have a pajama top for you to wear that should fit you
nicely. Hope you like wearing Victorian swirl prints!”
now, Katie, I’m so exhausted I
can’t even think straight. All I want right now is a nice, long hot shower, a
cup of tea and a good night’s sleep.”
good to me as well,” agreed the redhead warily. “Maybe we should sleep on
it. So, shall we,” mimicking Shere Khan’s patrician baritone, “retire for the day, madam?”
dah-ling,” Rebecca gestured with a
rolling wrist, both chortling over their own silliness. Placing one arm around
each others’ shoulders, they marched off in the direction of their shared
cabin. As they did so, the she-bear then sniffed the air about her and said:
“Strange…why does this corridor
smell like my bath oil?”
End of Part Twenty-Two
Back to TaleSpin Fiction