It's been quite some time since Sly disappeared during our time travel adventure. A year and ten months, actually. But I still haven't given up, and neither has the rest of the Cooper game or Carmelita. We know that Sly is out there somewhere and we don't stop until we find him. And in a surprise windfall, two old friends of ours have recently joined in the search. These two friends were Jake Clawson and Chance Furlong from MegaKat City. However most people know them better as Razor and T-Bone, the infamous SWAT Kats.
I'm sure its strange to hear hour international thieves crossed paths with a pair of vigilantes. Well its a pretty long story, and one I often reflect on. You see it all started about two years or so after me and the gang started out. We were taking a little road trip to find some place to steal from when we happened upon MegaKat City. And as luck would have it they had just unveiled the famous Kat's Eye Scepter of Queen Elisacat. Naturally Sly wanted it for our collection and so we set up a plan to steal it. Everything went according to plan, and not even the special police squad known as the Enforcers could stop us. But we weren't expecting a run in with the local vigilantes known as the SWAT Kats. They used a razor blade shooter to blow out our tires on the team van. Realizing that we needed a distraction Sly ran off with the Kat's Eye Scepter while Murray and I worked on replacing the tires. At that point Razor and T-Bone split up, the former going after Sly and the latter going after me and Murray. We managed to hold our own with T-Bone and were able to replace the tires in time to go after Sly. Luckily I installed an emergency tracking device in Sly's earpiece so finding him wasn't hard. However when we got there Sly and Razor were standing before each other, both of them holding onto the scepter. It was like they were in a trance or something. It was only when I called out to Sly that I got their attention and Sly took the moment of distraction to kick Razor and leap into the van with the scepter.
After that first meeting Sly started acting a bit different. Like he suddenly had a life changing experience. It would later learn why Sly was acting so different, after he decided to return the scepter to MegaKat City. But more specifically, he wanted to return it to Razor. Murray and I watched as the two made the exchange. And I'm more than sure that T-Bone was watching too. Sly held out the scepter to Razor and he slowly reached out and wrapped his hands around it. For a good three minutes the two held onto the scepter together. Then Sly finally made a move after another minute. But it wasn't a move for anything valuable off of Razor or to get back the scepter. It was a move to his face, with his lips.
That's right, my buddy and surrogate brother Sly Cooper kissed Razor of the SWAT Kats! Whew, that's a mouthful. But anyway out between me, Murray and T-Bone I think the one who was more surprised was Razor. He didn't know what to think of what was happening or what to do. But it seemed like he started to get the idea to return the kiss but before he could Sly pulled away and ran back to the team van. As we drove off I looked from the back window and could still see Razor standing where Sly left him, stunned from the kiss and loosely holding the Kat's Eye Scepter. When Murray and I asked Sly what that was all about he said that his heart was telling him to do it. Ordinarily I would make some type of witty remark about Sly's raccoon logic, but I could see in his face that what he did wasn't just on impulse. He was honestly serious about that kiss and I guess he hoped that Jake would return it. But when he didn't he ran off.
After that we went about our thieving business, both working to find leads on the Fiendish Five and gradually building up our reputation. Then one day we received a radio transmission over our global radio frequency. It was coming from MegaKat City and it was from Razor. I wasn't sure how he got onto our frequency then, and no matter how many times I asked now he never told me, but all he wanted was to talk with Sly in private. Me and Murray left Sly alone with the radio and four twenty minutes they talked. Then when Sly finally came out of the van he had the biggest smile you could ever see on a person's face. It wasn't logical for a person to smile so wide without dislocating an eyebrow. But Sly didn't seem to care about the facial disfiguring side-effects and just kept smiling. When Murray finally asked him what he was smiling about so much he said that Razor, who we would then learn to be Jake, wanted to meet with him again. And it didn't take a genius IQ like mine to figure out that Sly was very much in love.
Since then it seemed like every break we'd have Sly would spend most of it going to see Jake, and Jake coming to see him. Once he even helped Sly out on a heist and Sly returned the favor when Jake needed assistance against a mutant in MegaKat City. For our part T-Bone, Murray and I were happy for our friends. It was clear that they loved each other a whole lot. For about two years it seemed like they'd never part. But then things started to change. When Sly learned about Inspector Fox and how she had the case file he needed to hunt down the Fiendish Five, he became a bit distracted. He would focus more on trying to study Carmelita's pattern so that he could properly execute a heist to steal the file. Of course this caused a slight rift between him and Jake. And Sly loved Jake too much to let the rift go on. He told Jake that he needed to go on with his quest to recover the Thievious Raccoonus and defeat the Fiendish Five. And sadly, both for his protection and to remain focused on the job, that meant ending their relationship. Though Jake was obviously saddened by this he understood and the two separated on good terms. We remained friends with the SWAT Kats but I could easily see that Sly missed Jake and the relationship they once had. And the times we managed to send a video message I could see Jake missed Sly and their relationship as well. But they never made talks about rekindling their relationship. And neither me, Murray nor Chance made any suggestions that they should. It was their business in the end and it was their choice if they wanted to start anew. Although when Sly started taking his flirty banter with Carmelita more seriously over the years, especially after the Cooper Vault job, it seemed like their would be no relationship rekindling. Yet I picked up on some tale tell signs that Sly still missed Jake, like how he would look back at the pictures from their dates whenever he thought neither me or Murray were looking. And when we got into this time travel debacle Sly would talk more about Jake in-between our missions and less about Carmelita. Of course I knew that Sly still loved her, but I was beginning to wonder if he was still in love with her. The way they parted before Sly disappeared left a lot of things unsaid between them.
But with this new lead from Chance and Jake, I hope to help Carmelita finally say the things she couldn't say to Sly before. They told us about this enemy they tangle with now and again. A real time wizard from the Dark Ages known as the Pastmaster. While he usually based his time traveling spells on the time he came from the two cats were more than sure that something from the Pastmaster could help us find Sly. Scientifically it'd be a long shot to me, but given what I've seen from the supernatural to the totally outrageous I was willing to take a bead and shoot. When I asked if they taken anything from the Pastmaster that could help Chance said no, but then Jake said that the Pastmaster mentioned a ruined castle that he calls home in Epping Forest. So while Murray was driving the team van with me and Carmelita in the back, en route to the Pastmaster's Castle, T-Bone and Razor were following us with the Turbo Kat. I kept in touch with Razor to make sure that we'd stay together and not accidentally separate. From what they told me about the Pastmaster he's one nasty character. And guys like that usually have traps set all around his territory. If something in that castle did have a way for us to find Sly I didn't want to blow our chances.
“Hey Razor, do you see anything up above?” I asked over the radio..
“Nothing yet, Bentley. Knowing the Pastmaster he probably put up some invisibility spell or...Wait, hold up. I think I see something up ahead.” Razor said.
“Which direction?” I asked as I pulled up the radar to track the direction of the Turbo Kat.
“It looks like its South-East of here. Drive for about five miles.” Chance's voice said over the radio.
“Turn South-East and drive five miles, Murray.” I said to my hippo friend.
“Got it, Bentley.” Murray said and turned in the direction I gave him.
Though the five miles were relatively short, it felt pretty long to me. For nearly two years we've been searching for Sly and always came up short. Now with this lead it seems like we may finally be able to bring him home. Of course given that we got our information from a villain this could all be a trap. But still...its so close that I want so badly for this to be true. I was so engrossed in my thoughts that I didn't notice Carmelita was talking to me until she gently shook my shoulder.
“Bentley.” Carmelita said to me and I looked up at here. “We're here.” Carmelita said.
I nodded and opened up the side door of the van and rolled out followed by Carmelita and Murray. The Turbo Kat soon came to a 2.0 landing beside the van and its pilots hopped out. We all looked up at the foreboding old castle and stared at it for a moment. It sure looked like a place an evil time wizard from the Dark Ages would call home. But if I learned anything from living the bon vivant lifestyle with Sly its that there's no accounting for taste. However now's not the time to make designer assessment of old ruins. Now's the time to try and find a way to bring back our dear friend.
“Alright, so do we just walk in or did Pastmaster say that we should watch for something?” I asked T-Bone and Razor.
“He said that when he's at a great distance, his protective shields around the castle are down. I guess that means its safe to go in.” T-Bone said.
“Yeah, but let's keep our guard up. Pastmaster isn't exactly a straight arrow.” Razor said.
“How did you get him to tell you where the castle was anyway?” Carmelita asked.
“We bribed him with some 'Dark Age gruel'. After eating the 'modern hogwash' that the prison was giving him he cracked like a pecan shell.” T-Bone said with a grin.
“I'm not surprised. The way to a man's heart, however evil it may be, is through his stomach.” Murray said.
“Alright guys, let's get going. My scanners are detecting a strong magical read-out from the tower adjoining to the castle. That may be where the Pastmaster keeps all of his magical items.” I said as I looked over my built in computer in the left arm of my wheelchair.
“This will definitely be a first for me.” Carmelita said.
“What, going into an old castle?” T-Bone asked.
“No, expanding Interpol's district to magic.” Carmelita replied.
“I just hope that the magic here isn't too dangerous. Otherwise we're goners.” I said as I rolled up to the doors and activated the robotic arms of my wheelchair to push them open. The sound that greeted us was an ominous creek from the old bolts in the door.
“Insert Scardey Cat joke here.” T-Bone said as we all walked in.
“Don't jinx it for us, T-Bone. 'Cause if some she-kat pops up and gives us a bomb I'm tossing it at you.” Razor said.
We walked through the main floor of the castle until we reached the first stairway. Thankfully I modified the wheels of my chair so that they would roll over the steps easier. We came to a door that was old and slightly broken, so Carmelita took the honor of breaking it some more with a harsh kick. We proceeded from there and followed the directions on the radar. With every step we were getting higher which was taking us closer to the tower. As we came up to a pair of grand doors with a bronze cat skull crest on it my radar beeped rapidly.
“It seems like we've finally made it.” I said as I turned off my radar.
“Well let's go in.” Chance said and started to push the doors open only to slam into them. He looked at the doors curiously then tried to shove them open. However the blockade before us wouldn't budge.
“Seems like not all of the Pastmaster's shields went down as he said.” Carmelita said.
“Then let's making a smashing entrance!” Murray exclaimed and charged at the door only to get deflected by a powerful force field and land on his back at the staircase. “I guess you can't come in unless you're invited.”
“There has to be some kind of way we can get in.” I said as I tried to think of another method of entry.
“With a place like this, I wouldn't be surprise if the way in was an old fashioned magic phrase. Like open sesame.” Jake said.
Suddenly the doors started rattling and we looked up to see them begin to open. Slowly but surely the grand doors opened wide and we were greeted by what can only be called a wizard's workshop. Our mouths all dropped both in surprise at the interior and at the fact that Razor's joking remark worked.
“Wow, Jake. You opened the door without even trying.” Murray commented in awe.
“I wish it were that easy for me when I'm making my busts.” Carmelita said.
“Yeah, I probably loosened it up for 'em.” T-Bone said in a macho way. While us guys grinned our female officer just rolled her eyes.
“Whatever helps you sleep at night, Chance.” Razor said, patting his friend on the shoulder.
We all walked into the Pastmaster's workshop and immediately started looking through his personal effects. Not even I was sure of what it was that we were looking for but I had a feeling we'd know it when we saw it. I was looking among the shelves, Carmelita inspected the tables, Murray went through the closets and the SWAT Kats went through everything else. Our searching went on for a little over an hour and so far we didn't find anything. Or at least nothing helpful. But we sure did find a lot of novelties.
“Man, and I thought my folks were pack rats. The Pastmaster has more junk than they do.” T-Bone said.
“I think if we went to one of those oddity shops we could make a fortune to retire.” Razor said.
“Oddity shops? This crap would sell better with high society circles. You should see some of the weird shit they buy. It looks like it came from a whole other planet.” Carmelita said.
“Well we may have found a lot of cool stuff, but how do find a way to track Sly under all of this?” Murray asked.
“Unfortunately, Murray, this isn't an exact science. All we can do is ransack the place until we find some kind of spell that could help us locate Sly in the time stream.” I said as I kept looking.
“Too bad we can't find them by calling out to them. Like saying 'Magic item that can find a lost one in time, appear before me'.” Razor said.
Suddenly the objects in the room started to shake and everyone backed away until we were all back to back in the center of the room. All of the papers, books and other items started swirling around us like a hurricane. Then suddenly the objects all stopped, and they started to set themselves neatly on the shelves and tables. After a while of this only one item remained, a clear crystal ball with a golden base, and it sat itself before us. We looked at the crystal ball shockingly then me, Murray, T-Bone and Carmelita turned to Razor and he just gave us a shrug.
“Jake, buddy, do you have a warlock in your family I should know about?” T-Bone asked.
“I swear, I was just joking that time and the time before!” Razor exclaimed in his defense.
“Okay, next time save the jokes when we're away from the magic castle. I don't want to turn into a toad.” Carmelita said.
“Well aside from Jake having a possible supernatural heritage that should be looked into further later on, it seems like we found what we were looking for.” I said and rolled over to the crystal ball.
“Carefully, Bentley. That thing could go off if we're not careful.” Murray said.
“Yes it could present some danger to us if not properly collected. You trained with the Guru, Murray. Did he teach you any special moves that could be used for carrying this crystal ball safely?” I asked.
“Well, he taught me how to spread this Moon Dust onto my hands to protect them from evil enchanted items.” Murray said, taking out a small satchel of Moon Dust.
“Okay that should work. Try it out and see if you can pick it up.” I said and moved away to give Murray room to grab the object in question.
Murray powdered the palms of his hands with the Moon Dust then rubbed both palms together. He then slowly walked over to the crystal ball and eased his hands towards it. The rest of us watched with held breaths to see if anything would happen. For Murray's sake I certainly hoped it didn't. Finally Murray grabbed the crystal ball and picked it up. We all waited for something bad to happen. When nothing bad happened we all sighed in relief.
“Glad to see that Pastmaster's toys don't have an alarm or anything on them.” T-Bone said, wiping sweat from his brow.
“Yeah. Now we should head back and find someone who's good with magic that could help us figure this thing out.” Razor said.
“The Guru is the man for the job. I'm sure he'll be able to figure out this conundrum of a mystical mystery.” Murray said.
“I'm with Murray. How soon can you send him here, Bentley?” Carmelita asked.
“Within the hour I believe. Fortunately he's been journeying around Europe so we might be able to have him stop by in Paris.” I replied.
“Well what are we waiting for? Paris or bust, people!” Murray exclaimed and we all left the Pastmaster's workshop.
As we went back to Paris and Murray held that crystal ball, for the first time I felt like we honestly had a chance to find Sly.
When we finally arrived back in Paris, I just sat in the far corner of the Cooper Gang's safe house while Bentley called for Guru to come over. Heh, its actually pretty funny. Before I would have wanted to get inside here only to find the Cooper Gang and bust them. Now here I am sitting like I belong with them. And I have to admit, over the years I've felt like I belong more with the Coopers than at Interpol. Of course that doesn't mean I would stop standing for what's right and acting in the name of justice. I guess what I mean is that I feel more of a kinship with Sly, Bentley and Murray. Even though they're thieves and all, they have a strong moral code as well as ethics. Its more than what I can say for a lot of bad people I've met in my life. And its because of their strong morale code and ethics that I have grown a great respect for the Cooper Gang.
And of course, there was the one member who I respected a little bit more. In my case I also liked said member a little bit more. I'm referring to that handsome yet utterly full of it ring-tail that is Sly Cooper. When we first met I thought he was just another thief, not counting his different approach to stealing. For years I hounded him and hunted him down so that I could finally put him behind bars. But as we actually got to know each other, he started to change me a bit. I didn't realize it at first until we saved me from Clockwerk's gas chamber back in Russia. And that first time we actually kissed I knew I was in trouble. But of course I didn't let a little crush blindside me from my work. However I would later find out, during the Clockwerk Parts saga, that it wasn't a little crush. Slowly but surely Sly and I were getting closer. And when he 'lost his memory' at Kaine Island when he took a hit from that crazy Dr. M for me our relationship was sealed. We were together for quite a long time, spending our days dancing, laughing and enjoying our company. I thought it would never end.
But sadly it did. When the whole Le Paradox thing started Sly began to act strange. Then he disappeared with only a note, saying there's something important he must do. And when he broke in and stole that sword I felt three emotions. Hurt, betrayal and anger. I thought for sure that Sly would renounce his thieving ways before he really loved me. But it seemed like he only loved himself and would never change, or this was what I thought at the time before I learned the whole story. However even when I got the whole story my feelings for Sly didn't change much. Yes I do greatly care about him but I couldn't bring myself to call him my boyfriend or lover anymore. Trying to do so hurt to much. And when we met Tennessee Kid and Sir Galleth, I thought I'd flirt with them a bit to see if Sly cared enough about me to get jealous. Sly responded with a bit of green in his grey fur but it wasn't the great amount of jealousy I was expecting. It seemed like just as my feelings had taken a bit of a step back for him, his feelings had taken a step back for me. Sure we both loved each other and would always have one another's backs, that was true. But I don't think we were very much in love with each other anymore. And just before Sly disappeared on Le Paradox's blimp I tried to tell him something I should have said but I couldn't bring it out. Sly said that he knew what I was going to say but I still feel like so much was left unsaid. And then he disappeared before I could say more. Before I could say no matter what I'll always love him.
Recently though I have been wondering if Sly was forcing himself to love me. I say that because, during his absence, Bentley would let me read some of Sly's old journals to try and keep up the memory of him. Reading the fancy handwriting on the pages and imagining Sly's voice in my mind helps me “hear” him, as if he's there talking to me. Then as I read one of his earlier journals I saw a name that kept popping up. Jake Clawson, or Razor as he is also called. I remember hearing both names once. My friend Felina Feral from MegaKat City told me about two former ace pilots of the Enforcers named Jake Clawson and Chance Furlong. They were the top pilots back then and could have easily been commanders. But they didn't like the restrictions and after going against Commander Feral's orders they quit. Felina also told me about Razor, one person of a two man vigilante duo known as the SWAT Kats. He and his partner T-Bone swore over MegaKat City in their fancy jet called the Turbo Kat and handle the things that the Enforcers can't. While it pisses off her uncle a great deal Felina is actually grateful for the SWAT Kats. When I asked her why she said that its because of them she still has an uncle. That's something I could understand and also respect the SWAT Kats for. Ulysses is a tough old war horse but he can't take on the world like he used to. And the SWAT Kats are thankfully there to remind him that they're also around to help.
But what stood out to me was the fact that Razor and Jake Clawson were one in the same. And so were T-Bone and Chance Furlong. I was very surprised by this but it also made sense. Good men who want to stand for justice without the restrictions have taken a superhero path. And besides, who'd suspect former Enforcer pilots turned auto repairmen of being literal jet setting vigilantes? I certainly didn't until I read it in Sly's journal. As I read on I started finding more little surprises. How Sly would talked endlessly about Jake, how he wished he could meet him again after their first encounter and how he's never met anyone like him before. Then when Jake contacted him Sly was writing like a lovestruck teenage girl, doting his fancy written eyes with hearts and saying how he was excited about their date. The more I read the more I started to see that I wasn't really Sly's first love after all. Ordinarily a lady would be upset about not being the first love but my temper was calmed by the way Sly wrote about him and Jake. It was beautiful and filled with nothing but wonderful things. It seemed like just as I had been happy in the years Sly and I were together he was just as happy in the years he and Jake were together.
Then as Sly became more focused on his quest at stealing back his family's sacred book a rift started to form. I read on with great interest like I was wrapped up in a good romance novel. And as with many romances novels, soon came the mutual yet still painful breakup of a pair of sweethearts. I actually cried when I read that part. Sly was so happy with Jake but he also had a job to do for the sake of his family name, and their relationship would just drift and shatter if he tried to multitask with both. While Sly was grateful that Jake understood and that they kept in touch not being able to hold him like he used to still hurt. Then came an entry on how he first met me. For a few pages I was dubbed “the hot tempered Latina inspector” and I scoffed in amusement. That was such a Sly Cooper saying. Then I read how he began to feel the same way for me as he felt for Jake only not as strongly. There was nothing written like he was using me to fill the void, and I knew that Sly wouldn't do something like that besides.
No, what it seemed like was that Sly tried again at being happy when he thought he lost Jake after their split up. However the happiness he and I shared wasn't quite the same and thus wasn't on the same level. And when I got to the part about our break up, I actually started to cry. It hurt me knowing that I made Sly feel such sadness again, like he did when he and Jake split up. If I had known about this I would have been more understanding during the Le Paradox case and tried to make it work again. But there's nothing I can do to repair the damage I've caused to Sly's heart. At least, nothing I can do with our romantic relationship. But what I can do is try to patch relationship Sly and Jake had. From what I read of Sly's last entry he was considering calling Jake to try and rekindle things. But he never acted on it, fearing that he already found someone else.
I don't know if Jake has found someone new, but its worth a shot. However I won't bring this up to him until later. Right now we had to focus on bringing Sly back. Once I settled my personal goal aside in my mind, I looked up just in time to see Murray open the door for his master The Guru.
“Guru! Its so great to see you after such a long time!” Murray exclaimed happily. “How's New York treating you?”
The Guru spoke in his native language which, thankfully, we're all fluent in and sounded a bit ticked.
“Sorry that your flight was so noisy. The press can be a real pain. But it has to be pretty cool to be mentoring a rockstar.” Murray said.
The Guru spoke again in his language as he nodded and now sounded happier.
“Wow, he gave you backstage passes to all his concert for his tours!? That's awesome!” Murray exclaimed.
“Not to interrupt your reunion, Murray, but we need to talk to Guru about the crystal ball, remember?” Bentley asked.
“Oh right! Sorry Bentley. Guru, we found a crystal ball that may help us find Sly and we need your help.” Murray said.
The Guru gasped in shock at this and spoke in a hopeful tone.
“Yes, really Guru. But given its dark magic aura we dare not touch it ourselves. However the Moon Dust that you gave to Murray seems to withstand it, and so we figured that you would have a better shot than us with your Moon Stone.” Bentley explained.
The Guru hummed in thought as he observed the crystal ball on the table. Then he turned to the rest of us and spoke.
“So you can use the crystal ball to locate Sly, but you'd need a personal effect to do it.” Bentley said.
“Well gee, all I can think of is Sly's cane and he probably has it with him. What else could be a personal effect related to him?” Murray asked.
“I uh...I may have something.” Said a new voice and we turned to Razor. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a black eye mask. It was similar to one Sly would wear. “Sly gave this to me a few years back. Said I ever got tired of having bandana hair I should wear this.”
I took note of Jake's having Sly's mask. It meant that he still held onto his memory, and in more than a friend based manner. So that could mean there's still a chance to fix things between them. I watched as the vigilante handed Guru the eye mask and after examining it, he gave a nod of approval. Guru walked over to the crystal ball and laid Sly's eye mask on it. He then waved his Moon Stone over the ornament and started chanting as he wave his free hand around the crystal ball. After a moment the eye mask slowly rose from the ball and started to circle around it slowly. We all watched as the old kola bear anthro literally worked his magic. As Guru chanted the mask started circling around the crystal ball faster and faster, and the Moon Stone over it was glowing brighter. Finally the Guru let out a loud exclamation and a flash of light burst from the ornament. We all shielded our eyes until the light died down then looked. The once clear glass of the ball was now glowing with a white light and Sly's eye mask was floating above it. We watched with bated breath as we waited for some sign to appear.
Then, a picture slowly began to form in the light of the crystal ball. It was like watching a movie slowly come up to the title introduction. Finally we got a full picture of where Sly was located. We saw a Sphinx and towers of old pharaohs. What stood out the most about that image was that, instead of looking old and worn as the monuments do today, they look somewhat recent. Which means that Sly must be in the time when they were recently finished.
“So that's it! Sly's in Ancient Egypt!” Bentley exclaimed when the realization hit him.
“Alright! We finally know where Sly is! Thanks a lot, Guru. You're the greatest.” Murray said to his mentor.
The Guru gave a kind chuckle and spoke in his native tongue.
“Of course we'd do the same for you, Master. Cooper Gang members stick together.” The pink hippo said with a bright smile.
“Now that we know where Sly is, I can get the time machine ready.” Bentley said and rushed his wheelchair to the next room.
“Me and Guru will help you, Bentley!” Murray called out and followed after his friend with his master.
That left just me and the SWAT Kats. We stood there awkwardly, not having much reason to talk since the only mutual friends we had just left. As my eyes wandered I noticed that Sly's eye mask stopped floating and laid on the crystal ball. I walked over to it and gently picked it up. Then I walked over to Razor and handed it to him.
“Here. It was a good thing you had this on you.” I said to the orange tabby. Jake looked at me with a bit of surprise before he gave a little smile and nodded.
“Yeah...Good thing I did.” Jake said as he took the eye mask back and put it in his pocket.
“So, you're Sly's girlfriend?” T-Bone asked and Razor elbowed him.
“Chance! That's none of your business to ask!” Razor stated sharply.
“No, its okay. Lots of people ask, and I don't mind answering. To be frank, I'm not Sly's girlfriend. At least not anymore.” I admitted. It was the truth and I couldn't deny it. Sly and I just didn't have that connection as we used to before.
“You...You're not his girlfriend?” Razor asked with an honestly stunned expression.
“That's right. Back before Sly disappeared, back when this whole time travel thing started, some personal issues came up. He stole something from a museum after he promised to end the stealing to settle down with me. But I guess a Thievious Raccoonus can never really stop stealing. I should have been more understanding and get Sly's side of the story, because I know he doesn't steal without reason. However I let my temper take over my better sense and well that led downhill after that.” I explained.
“Wow...I'm sorry, Carmelita. I wish it could have been different for you guys.” Jake said. I looked at his face and listened to his voice, and both were sincere. Most exes would respond to another ex with spite and contempt. But I could tell that Jake wasn't that type of person.
“Thank you, Jake. I appreciate the words but sadly I can't change our relationship to the way it used to be. But what I can do is help bring Sly back and reunite the Cooper gang.” I said.
“Never thought I'd see a cop bring back a criminal. I thought enforcing the law was your job.” T-Bone said.
“That's why I'm doing this.” I replied.
“How do you mean?” Chance asked.
“If I don't bring back Sly, then I'm out of a job and I won't be able to enforce the law.” I said and gave a coy grin.
“Heh, touche. I like a lady with a bit of wit.” T-Bone said with a grin of his own.
“Well considering I'm a lady who lives by her wits, I think you and I will get along just fine T-Bone.” I said and held out my hand.
“Please, just call me Chance.” The stripped tabby said and shook my hand firmly. As our hands touched I couldn’t help but think, perhaps in the process of bringing back Sly and Jake I might find a bit of happiness for myself.
“Guys! Come in here quick!” Bentley's voice shouted in urgency. Wasting no time we all ran into the room where the time machine was and were immediately at the box turtle's side.
“Bentley, what's the matter?” I asked.
“I have some majorly bad news. It would seem that our use of the time machine has drained its core that allows extended periods of time spent in different eras. Meaning that we can only spend a short amount of time in Ancient Egypt to find and bring back Sly.” Bentley explained as he looked over the statistics on the computer.
“How long will we be able to stay?” Razor asked.
“Only twenty four hours! And if that wasn't the worse part, we all won't be able to go in to get Sly.” Murray said.
“What do you mean, Murray?” I asked, both shocked and confused by that statement.
“It seems that the quantum force core is on the fritz, and so it can only transport a specific amount of weight through time. Namely two people. But I can't go as I have to keep mind of the time machine.” Bentley explained.
“And the force of The Murray is worth way more than two people, and I really can't go.” Murray added.
The Guru spoke in his native tongue and explained the rest of the news.
“So that leaves the four of us having to decide who should go, then.” T-Bone said.
“I'll go.” I said immediately.
“And I'll go with her.” Razor said.
“Alright then. You two should fit the weight limit that the quantum force can carry. Carmelita, you'll need this timer watch so that you'll be able to keep track of how long you two have to find and bring back Sly.” Bentley said and opened a drawer to take out a fancy looking watch and handed it to me. I wrapped the watch around my wrist and set it to begin a count down of twenty four hours.
“Here, buddy. I don't know if this will do ya any good but take it anyway.” T-Bone said and handed Razor some kind of gadget that looked like a tuning fork.
“The Frequency Tuner?” Razor asked.
“Yeah. Maybe you can try to find the frequency of Sly's voice somehow. I added in a sample of his voice from his last call and adjusted the radius for a wide search.” T-Bone explained.
“Thanks, pal.” Razor said and pocketed the gadget.
“Alright you two, I got the time machine set for Ancient Egypt. Remember this is our only chance at finding Sly. And if you miss the deadline time then you'll be stuck in Ancient Egypt with him until I can fix the time machine.” Bentley said.
“Got it Bentley. You ready, Jake?” I asked the cat.
“As I'll ever be.” He replied.
Bentley then pulled a switch and before me and Razor appeared a green whirlpool. After a moment an image of Ancient Egypt appeared before us. We nodded to each other then gave a look to our comrades before walking in through the portal. In a flash of light Razor and I were sent through a rush of time and space. I'm glad I didn't eat anything heavy otherwise I'd see my food again. Jake looked like he was handling it pretty well, but also seemed like he would barf too. After two minutes of swimming through the time whirlpool I was greeted with a pile of golden sand. I went flying through the sand and my head was covered in it. From what I could hear the same happened to Jake. I pulled my head out and spat out the load of sand in my mouth then shook out the sand in my head. Razor pulled himself out as well and poured out the excess hand that got into his uniform.
“If I had to take a guess, I'd say we're in Ancient Egypt.” Razor said. I looked around us and noticed that there was debris around us. Debris that looked very familiar to Le Paradox's blimp.
“And if I had to take a guess, I'd say that this was where Sly crashed when he went through time.” I said.
“Let's investigate then.” Razor said and we split up to look around the wreckage. As I searched through my end, my hands stopped and my eyes widened in shock as I found something.
“Jake, come look at this.” I said to the cat. Razor got up from where he was searching and walked over to where I was.
“What is it?” Razor asked.
I picked up a hunk of metal and showed it to Razor. He looked at the hunk and when he saw what I saw he gasped. It was a map, and by the familiar mark of a raccoon it was a map written by Sly. Most importantly there were dates recorded on the hunk of metal. And the last date recorded was yesterday morning...
Sly Cooper is here, and here's alive. I looked at the timer and saw that we only had twenty three hours and forty minutes to find our ringtail. So without any time to waste Razor took out the Frequency Tuner and set it to locate Sly's voice while I read from the map. Hang on just a little longer, Sly. We're coming. We will bring you home. I promise.