Chapter 1
Time is Fleeting

The quiet serenity of the lush island was broken abruptly by the lone car that sped down the lonely, dusty lane. Tropical birds, disturbed from their roost, fluttered colorfully into the brilliant blue sky. Plumes of dust rose behind the large, black vehicle as it continued its journey toward the fenced compound ahead.

Stopping at the huge, imposing gate, the driver reached out to the security console that was mounted within a steel housing at the edge of the driveway, and quickly typed in the access code. Almost immediately,  the steady hum of the fence ceased, and the heavy iron gate began to sink into the very ground beneath the drive, to disappear completely.

The black car, accelerating quickly, scattered the gravel of the driveway as it sped up the road toward the compound's main buildings.

Sitting atop a cliff, overlooking the endless expanse of ocean, the compound was stark and imposing. A series of steel and glass buildings, each identical in their institutional severity, lined the central grass-covered common area that extended back into the lush island foliage at the far end of the compound. 

The black car pulled to a stop in front of a glass walled building perched precariously over the edge of the cliff itself. The driver stepped out and hurried around to open the door for his passenger, who stepped out, stretched tiredly, and surveyed his surroundings.

The visitor observed the workers as they hurried from one building to another, without conversation, without interaction, all dressed in identical silver jumpsuits, all wearing identical insignias on their uniforms. The severity of this place reached past the buildings..... to the very workers themselves!

Shrugging his shoulders, he turned his attention back toward the glass structure that extended into the empty void beyond the cliff. This building  unnerved him, but he would NEVER let his host see his discomfort. His host rejoiced in finding the weaknesses of others..... always exploiting it to his own benefit.

He took a long, slow breath, nodded curtly to the driver, then proceeded toward the door of the Glass cube. As if the building had a life of its own, the stainless steel door suddenly disappeared into the slit in the floor, just as he reached for the security box beside the door.

Steadying his nerves, he squared his shoulders and entered the glass structure. He proceeded into the building, then veered to the left and began climbing the broad glass staircase that curved gracefully toward the upper floors.

The sudden change upon reaching the second floor landing brought him to a full stop. There was no open area, no hallway, nowhere to GO. He stared at the polished stainless steel wall directly ahead of him. It showed no marks, no seams, no visible means of support, but reflected the view behind him.... he saw himself, he looked downward and saw the black car awaiting him in front of the building, and the compound beyond.

Shaking his head to regain his equilibrium, he looked back at the wall..... and waited.

A deep, raspy voice seemed to reverberate off the steel wall...

"Good morning, Bristow. Thank you for your prompt response. I hope you have brought me good news! Please, come right in."

And, with that, the steel wall in front of Bristow began to disappear into the floor.  The sudden brightness from the ocean vista was almost blinding. Where, once, a metal wall had stood, now appeared one enormous glass expanse, with unrestricted views of the ocean.

"Come in, come in," the raspy voice instructed. "I've saved a chair for you. Please, sit down."

Bristow looked around, and finally found an acrylic chair sitting forlornly in the very center of the huge, empty space. Stumbling, he tried not to show his growing fear as he moved toward the hard, cube-like chair and sat down.

The raspy voice seemed to come from somewhere to the right, but the trembling Bristow saw no one, only glass walls.

"Report... NOW!" the voice commanded.

"Sir.... uhhhhhh, you asked for a status report. Breen Mountain has been working day and night for 3 years to complete their part of the project, and they've managed to complete 80% of the holding container. However, with the capacities you've demanded, it'll be at LEAST another 8 months before they have it completed to your specifications."

A sudden 'HUMPH' interrupted Bristow's report. Even MORE nervous now, he began to sweat.

"Continue.... and I DOOO hope your news improves!" the voice warned.

Bristow stammered, "Welllll, sir..... Glanik Island had a problem with sustaining a viable labor for a couple of months, due to the toxic materials they were using... but they have recently solved that problem. The workforce from Sutton Glen has just completed the rocket construction, so the team managers have transferred Sutton Glen's workers to Glanik Island and are now pushing everyone into double shifts to make up the lost time."

Bristow cleared his throat again, then added, "Sir... Breen Mountain and Glanik Island MUST have extra time. The site managers both report that they've been hard pressed to maintain your time schedule. Their projected completion dates extend this project by at LEAST 8 months, and that doesn't even include the implementation and activation of the finished system."

Bristow took a ragged breath. He hadn't counted on ANY of this when he'd seen the ad in the paper advertising an opening for a bookkeeper in an "upwardly mobile" corporation. This wasn't going well, not well at ALL.

The rumors that Bristow had recently heard simply terrified him. More than ONE system manager had simply vanished after making a less than acceptable report to the CEO of this very unusual, very secretive corporation. He'd seen workers who were afraid to even SPEAK the corporation's name for fear of reprisal.

He fidgeted in his chair as he nervously scanned the room again, desperate to locate the source of the voice.

"FOUR DAYS!" the voice suddenly bellowed. "Those incompetent teams have FOUR DAYS in which to complete ALL preparations!"

"I WILLLLL begin "THE TRANSFORMATION" in FOUR DAYS' TIME!" he raged. "Their survival WILL depend upon their meeting my timeline."

Bristow trembled visibly, then turned suddenly as a dark-robed figure appeared behind him and closed a vise-like grip around his arm. Pulling Bristow to his feet, the robed figure pushed him back across the room, then unceremoniously shoved him to the edge of the staircase.

Bristow, fearing for his life, staggered desperately, trying to gain his balance before he tumbled down the staircase in a heap. He grabbed hold of the stainless railing and slid several feet before finally gaining control of his forward momentum. He almost RAN the rest of the way down the stairs, praying he would be able to exit the facility before the robed figure caused the disappearance of yet another visitor to the Glass Cube.

Fear lent wings to Bristow's feet as he raced out of the building, threw himself into the back seat of the waiting vehicle, and screamed for the driver to leave...... NOW!

A lone figure stood quietly in the glass enclosure, watching the black car speed out of the compound. He smiled to himself. The world would, in four days, recognize his power. The world would, in four days, tremble at the mere mention of his name. In four days, the world would be HIS!

A raspy chuckle escaped his lips as he moved across to the huge, crystal desk. He had much to do. His destiny awaited!

No one noticed the Scottie peering through the bushes at the edge of the compound. No one realized that ORB eyes were watching and LISTENING. No one saw the ORB agent pull out a communication device and begin transmitting.

As the activity around the compound continued on its normal routine, no one noticed the Scottie silhouette silently slip back into the greenery. No one realized that this location was now compromised.

Now, ORB knew!!

Chapter 2

ORB Headquarters

Riley Rambunctious, RR to his agent friends, was better known as "Double R 8" to his enemies. He strolled casually across the enormous parking lot, his left paw tucked casually into the pocket of his trousers. He resented having to leave the soiree so abruptly, but "K" had summoned him... and when "K" summoned, it was ALWAYS wise to "jump"!

He looked at the very large, very ordinary 'brownstone' factory before him, at the sheer BOREDOM of it all, and sighed. His gaze was drawn to the top of the building, where a garishly gaudy neon sign blinked repeatedly... "ORB Tennis Ball, MFG." Beside the sign, an enormous yellow tennis ball beamed a constant, sunny yellow light over the entire front of the building.

Riley shook his head, adding a 'tsk-tsk' for effect. It was easy to see K's wicked sense of humor in this cover for the secret office headquarters.

ORB - "Organized Rowdy Behavior", an international spy ring dedicated to protecting the world from evil-doers, was headquartered here, 6 stories beneath this sprawling old tennis ball factory. He found it terribly humorous that ORB headquarters was situated in an orb factory.

Riley smiled. "K" spent each day juggling the many crises that erupted around the world, assigning ORB agents to each 'hotspot' to alleviate a dangerous situation... and was surrounded, always, by ORB -- both the organization AND the millions of fuzzy, yellow tennis balls that rolled off the assembly lines of the factory each day. "K" had a wicked sense of humor, to be sure!!

Riley walked up to the factory entrance, then rolled his eyes as he reached for the doorknob.... yellow ORBS, what else!! Entering the building, his eyes quickly scanned the area. Aged squares of green and yellow linoleum tiles covered the floor of the old foyer. The once bright walls now bore ancient, faded paint that more closely resembled a soft cream color, rather than the original sunny yellow. Photos of ORBS lined the faded walls... orbs bouncing, orbs rolling down hills, orbs in mouths, orbs lying on tennis courts... always more ORBS!

Riley smiled again as he moved across the foyer toward the front hallway. He glanced over at an old, worn wooden desk sitting in the far corner of the foyer, angled to have a clear view of the entire entrance area.

"Hi, Mac!" Riley called, waving a paw as he passed, to reveal his 'WCGang Secret Decoder Ring'. "How's it bouncing???" Riley asked, as Mac smiled and nodded, acknowledging the identification. NO ONE was EVER allowed through to ORB headquarters without 'THE Ring'!!!

Mac sat in an ancient, wooden Captain's chair behind the old desk. He had the chair pushed almost into the corner, and had tipped it back, to balance precariously on its two rear legs. One arm was draped carelessly over the side of his chair, rhythmically tapping one leg of the chair, as he kept time to the tune playing on the out-dated radio that sat on his desk. Beside the radio lay a stack of newspapers, probably several days old. Pages with crossword puzzles could be seen folded back, along with a half-eaten candy bar, and an empty bag of Fritos.

Mac smiled at Riley. "High and Fast, Riley... bouncing high and fast!" He laughed out loud at his own joke, and watched as Riley approached the glass double doors that separated the foyer from the main hallway that led to the factory itself. Just as Riley reached for the handle of the door, Mac shifted ever so slightly, and without even glancing down, slid his paw down the front leg of the chair, grasped the second decorative ring that adorned the leg, and turned the wooden ring to the right.

The glass doors opened immediately. Riley glanced back over his shoulder at Mac, threw him a salute, then proceeded down the hall into the depths of the factory. He continued down the long hallway until he reached a large snack machine sitting in an alcove just off the hallway.

Stepping into the alcove, Riley reached into his pocket. He ignored the car keys, and felt through the coins in his pocket. He finally pulled out a quarter, one that looked like the other quarters but was far from 'normal'. Twirling it quickly in his paw, he grasped the edge of the coin firmly, and squeezed. The coin immediately grew warm and began to emit a soft hum.

Riley took a quick glance back up the hall, and finding himself alone, he moved to the snack machine, inserted the humming coin, then pressed D-4. The side of the snack machine swiveled outward, revealing a hidden doorway.

Not being one to waste an opportunity, Riley's paw darted around and grabbed the bag of cookies just as he stepped into the opening. Quickly, he stepped into the machine, then reached for the keypad on the darkened wall beside him, and punched in the familiar number sequence. The side of the snack machine closed silently behind him, sealing him in inky darkness.

The blackness was like an old friend, as it wrapped him in its dark cloak. From years of practice, Riley took one step forward, then stopped, and nimbly stepped off 3 lateral paces to the right. He smiled. Unwanted guests, entering this blackness, would not know the danger of taking that second step straight ahead, which would drop them into an endless void, never to be seen again.

Knowing this space well, he reached overhead and grasped the smooth, metal handle in his paw. Two quick turns to the left, and he was suddenly bathed in a soft, yellow glow. He heard the familiar swish of the door sliding closed behind him, and felt the space begin to descend beneath him.

Riley always enjoyed this part of the journey. He exhaled slowly, relaxing in the peace and serenity of his surroundings... the warm, mahogany walls with their intricate ebony inlay, provided a richness to the small elevator as it descended ever downward.

He felt the elevator's feather-light stop as it reached its subterranean destination. He stepped forward just as the richly carved doors silently parted to permit his exit.

Riley had walked these halls countless times in the 7 years that he'd been an ORB agent, yet he was always impressed by the sheer magnitude of these surroundings.

ORB Headquarters was a VERY impressive facility. A wide, spacious corridor lay in front of him. The walls, covered in exquisite woodwork with elaborate inlayed panels, concealed doorways to other areas of operations. The marble floors echoed his footsteps as he sauntered down the richly appointed hallway. Glancing from side to side, he was always entertained by the priceless artwork hanging from the richly paneled walls as he continued onward.

He looked overhead, at the coffered ceiling, then smiled and waved at one of the artistic wooden moldings that accented the space where the wall reached the ceiling. He knew that his wave always frustrated the security team watching from the Tech Center. They prided themselves on their covert status... and Riley's WAVING at them as he passed one of their hidden video installations only served to flaunt the fact that he KNEW they were watching!

No one would ever realize that their every step was monitored down here. What appeared to be richly appointed, sumptuous surroundings concealed a well-organized operation of worldwide proportions... the ORB operation took its mission statement VERY seriously!

Turning a corner, Riley was immediately struck by the bustle of activity today, in what was usually a relatively quiet corridor. It was crowded with ORB agents, all hurrying from one department to another, all with cellphones to their ears, Blackberries in their paws, all busy communicating with contacts around the world. Riley smiled and waved as some agents looked his way, and clapped others on the back as he passed.

But it was the appearance of the Guardian Brigade that brought him to a stop. Coming out of a room up the hall, he counted... the ENTIRE Brigade, here... that shocked him. They were NEVER all summoned to headquarters together. The Guardian Brigade was crucial as the strong-paw power behind the fearless ORB agents. They were ALWAYS afield, supporting operations worldwide.

RR watched as Jubilee and the Guardian Brigade turned and entered the "HOT Room". Surprised, he watched the last of the Brigade disappear, closing the door firmly behind them. Curosity overwhelmed him, for he knew that the "HOT Room" was reserved for only the MOST urgent, the most secretive of meetings.

Shaking his head, RR's mind raced. Something WAS most assuredly happening at ORB. And he knew JUST who to ask.

Riley looked past the dozens of bustling agents, and spotted his destination ahead. A pair of ornately carved, wooden double doors stood proudly at the far end of the hallway, extending the entire width of the richly paneled corridor.Lengthening his strides, he reached the heavy doors, gave a couple of quick raps, then grabbed the polished brass scrollwork that served as knobs on each door, and threw the doors wide.

"K" sat behind an enormous mahogany desk, her attention focused entirely on a stack, of maps, satellite telemetry, and computer print-outs that were spread across the desk. Glancing up, she acknowledged his presence with a wave of her paw, motioning him to the leather chair across from her desk.

Riley slid smoothly into the armchair, then raised one rear paw to prop carelessly on the edge of the antique desk.

"You seem to have called in ALL the troops this time! What's up?" he asked, as he leaned forward to remove a treat from the crystal jar that "K" always kept filled on the corner of the desk.

"K" patted Riley's paw sharply, forcing it off her desk. She then turned toward the mound of paperwork sprawled across her desk, and with a tenacious glare, she turned to Riley and replied, "We have finally located 'Big BAD'.  He has created a consortium of frightening proportions. We count at least THREE separate facilities, scattered all over the world. All are wound tightly to his nefarious plot... and we THINK we may have located his headquarters. We're still awaiting word from our field agent who was to have infiltrated BIG BAD's compound this morning."

"K" paused. Her paw grasped a map in a fierce grip, as she continued, "His organization, B.A.D., is aptly named, to be sure....'Brutally Anti-Social Dudes'. Our field agents report that he plans to bring the world to its knees, to create a B.A.D. empire.... and his timeline has already BEGUN, from what we understand. What we DO NOT know is his plan. We MUST find out what he intends to DO!"

"All agents are reporting in, as we speak," Katie added fiercely. "We will have a full briefing tomorrow morning for the entire ORB organization, after which I will immediately deploy ALL teams to their assigned targets. If we hesitate, all is lost."

"K" took a deep breath, and proclaimed, "This one is SERIOUS, Riley. The fate of the world now rests solely on our shoulders... with the bold tenacity of ORB! We must get B.A.D.!!"

Chapter 3

An Abundance of ORB Agents

Neither "K" nor Riley slept that night. They spent the long hours poring over document after document, analyzing the satellite images, determining the assault strategies, and aligning the ORB agents to assault, incredibly, FOUR separate B.A.D. installations simultaneously!

Riley stood and stretched, raising his muzzle toward the ceiling, to ease tired muscles. He glanced at the clock and groaned.

"It's time, "K". I have transferred all the data to our ORB telemetry to allow the agents easy uplink to the system. We're ready."

"K" smiled, gave Riley's paw a pat, then pushed him toward the door.

"Let's DO IT!" she said with a determined stare.

Moving back into the wide corridor, "K" and RR8 continued walking until they reached the painting of the "Mona Lisa". They each raised their paws, flashing their 'WCGang Secret Decoder Rings' toward the priceless artwork. Immediately, the entire mahogany panel began to slide away, revealing a long, well-lit hallway.

"K" and Riley moved down the hall, past doors that all sported serious security locking systems, past long sections of mirrored wall -- obviously one-way glass, towards a lone metal door at the far end of the corridor.

Nearing their destination, they stopped. Riley raised his paw, pointed "THE ring" toward one of the fire sprinklers in the ceiling... and waited. Almost immediately, a green light appeared at the end of the sprinkler.

"So much for the 'laser eliminators', now for the FLAMES," Riley said casually, as he once again aimed the "WCGang Secret Decoder Ring", this time downward, toward an innocent looking point in the floor, where 4 ceramic tiles converged in a grey-lined grout. There was no sign of any change, and it was THIS very fact that always put Riley on alert, for one false step onto the next four rows of 18x18" ceramic tiles would immediately incinerate anyone crossing the space.

"K", never one to hesitate, immediately moved forward, her gait confident and purposeful. Together, they reached the plain-looking metal door, where "K" waved her "WCGang Secret Decoder Ring" by the metal lever that served as a knob. The almost imperceptible electric hum immediately disappeared. Riley opened the door, and together they entered the Briefing Room.

The interior of the room was enormous, and was arranged much like a college lecture hall, with row after row of raised amphitheater style seating, that extended all the way to the ceiling at the rear of the huge space.

The similarities with a mere lecture hall ended there, however, as ORB spared no expense with their technology or their agents' safety. Each plush, Sherpa-lined seat in the Briefing Room consisted of a computer station, equipped with GPS, satellite telemetry, Bluetooth capabilities for the agents' peripherals, all mounted seamlessly and smoothly into the flat desktop in front of them, and all linked to the mainframe down on the floor where "K" would give the briefing.

Riley stepped up onto the 'stage' of the amphitheater and took a seat at the end of the huge table. "K" took her customary seat at the center of the space, in a lush cushion, piled high with throws. This huge table housed the heart of ORB's technology. "K" and Riley had, at their pawtips, all the technology that ORB possessed. From here, they could see the WORLD!

"K" turned around once, to find JUST the perfect spot on her favorite cushion, let out a deep sigh, and looked up the stairs at the room FILLED with ORB agents! She nodded at the loyal ORB agents, all long-time personal friends.

"It IS, indeed, a rarity to have the ENTIRE agent force of ORB in attendance for a briefing," she began. "However, this situation DOES require our combined efforts!"

"K" quickly glanced down at her control panel, to check the computer roster of agents in attendance. Each agent's "WCGang Secret Decoder Ring" was required, not only to gain admittance to the ORB facility, but to allow the agent to access the technology at their assigned console stations.

A quick flip of a switch revealed the ID# of each ORB agent in attendance. She stopped, and looked again. A long sigh escaped her lips.

"I see one of our ORB agents has forgotten their "WCGang Secret Decoder Ring", she announced. "Well, I can just about GUARANTEE that this agent will not REPEAT this error... as the forgetful agent has had to spend the last two hours in SECURITY DETENTION, undergoing a 'pawscan' an x-ray identification of canines and incisors, as well as an EAR scope to read the bar code on the implant next to the eardrum, and the final, ultimate Pee-CUP ID!"

The ORB agents chuckled softly, but none dared look around. No one saw the lone ORB agent sink a little lower into the chair, nor notice the furry ears, reddened in embarrassment... nor did they hear the agent's whispered vow to NEVER again forget "THE ring"!

"K" cleared her throat, looked across the huge room at the loyal ORB agents, and began. "If you would each activate your ORB screens, we will begin."

"K" pressed a button on the master console in front of her. Behind her, on the huge digital screen, a massive image appeared, and was immediately visible on each agent's ORB screen. "K" manipulated the screen's image from her master panel, to provide greater detail of the satellite imagery.

"What you are looking at is a rocket installation at a remote location in the Southern Hemisphere, known as Sutton Glen," she explained. "We believe our most resourceful enemy, B.A.D.... 'Brutally Anti-Social Dudes', is back in operation."

Grumblings were immediately heard from the agents upon hearing the name of their most dangerous adversary mentioned in connection with this current crisis. Soft growls were heard as the agents' anger began to heat up.

"K" continued, "Notice, at the northeast corner of the screen.... a rocket launch pad. Now, follow that road back down toward the southwest corner, near that large metal building. We think that is a rocket, on a track, being taken to the launch site."

More grumbling was heard, this time louder. The ORB agents, always eager for a little adventure, were warming up quickly to this briefing.

"K" reached down to the console and deftly flipped the display to the next satellite image. A crisply detailed satellite image appeared, this time revealing a mountain setting.

"If you'll check the next image on your ORB screens, please. Breen Mountain, located in the farthest reaches of the Himalayas, seems to be tied in to this B.A.D. plot. If you look closely, in that valley just between those two peaks, you'll see some sort of enormous tank... a vat of some sort. But, it's size is simply beyond the realm of anything we can even IMAGINE. We have NO idea what its purpose might be."

Without pausing, "K" switched the display to yet another image. "Now, here's our third site that we've connected to this B.A.D. operation. We have no IDEA what this site's role might be. All we DO know is that this island, Glanik Island, is in a remote area of the Pacific, and contains an incredible amount of telemetry, satellite dishes, and radar. It seems to contain an overwhelming amount of defensive fortifications."

"K" took a quick breath, and continued. "THEN, there is that massive building on the far side of the island. We've seen constant traffic going and coming from it for days now, yet no equipment, nothing that we could identify to help determine its purpose."

"K" glanced around the room, looking into the faces of her friends, the loyal ORB agents. She KNEW they would be ready for whatever lay ahead, and this time was no different. With each additional bit of information, the agents had become more and more incensed. They were ready to face this challenge, to represent ORB with pride, and defend the world from these B.A.D. villains!

"We DO know that these sites ARE interconnected, as there has been EXTENSIVE communication between the three sites... with occasional references to B.A.D. and 'the drain'."

"We have ALSO intercepted communication traffic from yet ANOTHER site, one that seems to wield an incredible amount of authority over the other sites. It is ONLY supposition on our parts, but we wonder if, perhaps, this new site might be the headquarters of 'BIG B.A.D' himself!"

"One of our agents is in place, at this moment, at this newly identified location... and from visual Intel being gathered, we can now almost CERTAINLY confirm this to be the lair of 'BIG B.A.D'!! "

The reaction of the agents was immediate! Growls, loud and fierce, along with the snapping of huge, dangerous Scottie teeth were heard around the enormous briefing room. All agents wanted to have a paw in taking down 'BIG B.A.D.', as he was constantly organizing dastardly, evil plots and had consistently avoided capture by every nation that had sent teams to bring him to justice.

"This assignment will be totally unlike any that ORB has ever undertaken. We MUST utilize all 135 ORB agents on this operation. We've coordinated the operation to deal with all four of the sites, simultaneously. We MUST remove each site's threat, simultaneously. It will be catastrophic for our operation, if one team falls behind on THEIR portion of this critical operation. Timing is CRUCIAL!!!"

"K" gazed at the agents, at the determined expressions on their faces. "The teams have already been prepared... if you will now check your ORB monitors you will see the Teams listed, with the agents who will participate in that operation."

The Briefing Room immediately grew quiet, as the agents quickly checked their screens, eager to see their assignment in the coming operation. Within seconds, the room became loud and boisterous, with agents springing up out of their consoles, eager to meet with the other agents of their teams.

"K" watched proudly as the fierce, fearless agents took control of the briefing. She watched as the teams seemed to form into separate groups around the room. She watched 'high fives' and pats on the back. She listened to the agents' boasting promises of quick resolutions to the assignments, of the inevitability of the downfall of B.A.D., and watched the pride of the ORB agents shine in each agent's furry face.

With a final loud "AHEM", "K" quickly ended the briefing with final instructions.

"The teams.... DANGER, SWORD, and TIGER, will immediately begin preparations in the Analysis rooms down the hall, and prepare for immediate departure. You will need to begin by organizing teams to gather your INTEL for your destination. These will be strictly undercover operations, so plan accordingly."

"Our fourth team, the Royal Hilands, RHKS, will accompany Riley on HIS mission to make insertion into Site 4, so see "Double R 8" for operation assignments."

Without pausing, "K" added, "Jubilee, you will be in CHARGE of the operation, handling all activity from the Operations Control Room. Sammy Jo Bush, Mackie Brewer, Scotty Tucker, and Millie Reyner will be your coordinators. Your team will coordinate all actions by all groups."

"ORB agents," she said, a proud smile on her face. "We will accomplish what no OTHER organization in the world has been able to do. We will, I GUARANTEE you, take down 'BIG B.A.D.' and his evil organization."

The ORB agents began to cheer loudly, excitement written on their faces, a gleam in their eyes revealing their eagerness to begin the operation. This was what they LIVED FOR!!!

The agents began to disperse, each team headed to a separate room to formulate plans, to prepare for their individual operations.

"OHHHHHH, one last thing," "K" said, with a catch in her voice. "This assignment.... it's 'OPERATION JUBILEE'... so we can NOT FAIL!"

The cheering grew into a frenzied roar as the agents clapped each other on the back, then all glanced proudly at the Commander of the Guardian Brigade, seated in her place of honor at the Briefing Table down front.

" YEAAAAAAAAA!!!" they cheered, smiling proudly at their beloved Guardian Leader. "Let's GET 'ER DONE!"

OPERATION JUBILEE had begun.....

Chapter 4

Sly SPY Scotties!

"SHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" Jubilee ordered her command team, as she clamped a paw to her headphones in an effort to better hear the agents' whispered reports.

"K" had immediately dispatched RR8 and the vast majority of the agents to Saint-Tropez, on the French Riviera, in an effort to garner as much information as possible on "BIG B.A.D." and his operation. It was widely rumored that "BIG" had a fondness for the gambling tables, especially the roulette wheel at the "Chez Geaux" in Saint-Tropez.

By the time the sun came up, the morning following the Briefing, Saint-Tropez was literally crawling with ORB agents, all striving to blend in, to become invisible and anonymous.

"SURELY someone's going to notice the 100+ new employees at the "Chez Geaux".... B.A.D. CAN'T be THAT bad!!" Jubilee complained, as she continued to listen, occasionally switching the channel on the control panel in front of her, to keep tabs on the different teams.

"NAHHHHHHHHH," Scotty Tucker promised. "They're not all employees. Some are patrons playing the slots, some are blending in as tourists, some are covering the yachts in the harbor, some are 'high rollers' at the tables, and others are infiltrating the criminal element of the city, gathering whatever 'intel' they can. They'll be fine!"

Millie Reyner cocked her head, listened carefully for a second, then leaned forward and activated several uplinks on the huge control panel.

"The teams are beginning to log in," Millie announced, as she quickly made adjustments on the control panel to improve reception.

The bank of digital monitors, mounted atop the control panel, would be ORB Headquarters' eyes during the coming operation, used to focus on the four principal targets... Sutton Glen, Glanik Island, Breen Mtn., and B.A.D. headquarters.

But, right now, the 'high tech' monitors were providing glimpses into the covert 'intel' operation on the French Riviera. Jubilee and her command staff all turned their attention to the monitors as they leaned forward to tune their headsets to the compatible frequencies to eavesdrop on the happenings around Saint-Tropez.

"Jubilee, we're in position," Jake whispered softly into the wireless communicator buried in his neck ruff. "Team SWORD is in place at 'Chez Geaux'. We have all the tables covered. Dughul, Tucker, Bravo, Agatha, O'Henry, Hobbes, Dottie, Old Mandy, Scarlett, Rooney, Ceilidh, Baxter, and Noots are working the slots, to keep their eyes open for any of B.A.D.'s henchmen. Bonnie Belle, Odie, Nessie, Piper, Taylor, Maddie, and Lyndi are at 'Big B.A.D.'s' favorite roulette table and will alert us if he shows up. Jack has Henry, Flick, Polly, Alex, Katie Mac, Sassy, Mr. Murphy, and Harmony working the floor as hosts and hostesses for the customers and will keep their ears open for any 'loose info'. Sorbet has Baby Ruth, Katie W, Allie, Lucy, and Maggie on exterior surveillance around the casino, covering exits and are ready to act as the 'strong arm' force if the agents INSIDE the casino are compromised."

"Good job, JL," Jubilee replied. "Keep us posted. And, remember, that camera you're carrying is in your tag on your be sure you're facing the direction you want to transmit, so our monitors will pick up the digital feed."

"Copy that," Jake replied. Turning, Jake surveyed the floor of the enormous casino, watching his team deploy to their various stations.

Reaching for his communication button, Jake quietly instructed his team, "Okay, SWORD!! Initiate... initiate... initiate! Let's get it DONE!"

Jake watched silently as his lethal team spread themselves across the room, to blanket the casino with ORB's covert surveillance. Glancing toward the main entrance of the "Chez Geaux", Jake spotted RR8 sauntering into the crowded casino, right on time.

The suave agent stopped at the top of the stairs that led down onto the main gambling floor, and casually surveyed the room. He seemed to be deciding what table would provide the greatest amusement, then began leisurely stepping down onto the main floor, making a circuitous trip toward the Roulette table.

Jubilee listened to Mackie Brewer's play-by-play description of Team SWORD's movements, as they encompassed the casino with their skillful movements, and smiled as Mackie described RR's casual entry onto the scene.

"Well done," Jubilee announced. "Now, Sammy Jo... check on Team TIGER. They should be in place at the marina by now."

Sammy Jo immediately flipped a switch on the Control Panel, and one of the monitors began to focus in on a sleek, expensive yacht that was moored at the end of the pier. The yacht was brilliantly lit, yet seemed to be deserted. The Control team watched closely as dock workers scurried around at various chores along the pier. Scotty Tucker smiled, then began describing the scene for Jubilee.

"Belle and Sadie are working their way down the pier, along with Kramer, Sparcky, Gingerina, Sam E, Heidi, Alex, and Connor. They seem to be painting the pier railings as they go!"

"Let's see," Sammy Jo continued. "There are 15 Tiger agents scattered along the beach area, with 10 more water-skiing and sailing near the yacht. So "Big B.A.D.'s" yacht is well covered."

Jubilee nodded, then asked, "What about DANGER & the Royal Kilted Teams? They were to infiltrate the seedier side of Saint-Tropez, to interrogate the criminal element. Have either of them checked in?"

Mackie moved his attention from Sword's movements in the casino to the last monitors on the Control Panel. Quickly changing the frequency and adjusting the satellite downlink, Mackie watched the monitors as they revealed narrow streets with deteriorating shops and shadowy alleys.

"General Cammster, report..." Mackie ordered, flipping a switch and moving the audio feed to the speakers.

"Royal Kilted, checking in," Cammster replied. "We're in position, and expect a rollicking time down here. We just finished a bit of community relations... Terrier style, over here. Capt'n Angel almost got her pocket picked by some low-life that was lurking around the alley we'd scoped out. But, between Angel, Bo'sun, Duncan, and Mochreigh's little "Terrier Talk" they had with the slimy thief, they feel SURE that he's about to change his ways!"

Cammster laughed, then continued. "We've already deployed the Royal Kilted into the Rue Inferieur, and we expect successful Intel within the hour. Gotta go, Control... Haley, Piper, Darby, and Sherman have Team DANGER rounding up all the criminals and lining 'em up along the curb!!! Out!"

Jubilee shook her head and chuckled. "Nothing like the SUBTLE approach," she commented to her teammates.

"Millie," Jubilee said. "Put all teams' locations up on the monitors, please. Okay, I need each one of you to key your headset on ONE of the Team operations. Concentrate on ANYTHING you might hear that would reveal SOMETHING about B.A.D. or its intentions."

The silence in the Control Center was overpowering, as Jubilee and her team turned their attention to the teams of ORB agents scattered around the French Riviera resort. The danger surrounding the ORB agents was intense, especially as they were searching OUT any news pertaining to B.A.D.

"HEADS UP!!! HEADS UP!!!!" Sammy Jo suddenly hissed. "Sadie reports a black, stretch limo pulling up at the end of the pier! It seems to be waiting for someone from the yacht."

"Fade, Team TIGER. Fade into the shadows... stay close enough to listen....but stay OUT OF SIGHT!" Sammy Jo ordered. Jubilee and her team all strained to hear the conversation between the two individuals walking down the pier toward the waiting limo. Paws pressed headsets closer to their ears, to insure that every word was heard.

They listened as a raspy voice walked up the pier, closer and closer to the hidden listening devices, curtly issuing orders and obviously accustomed to being instantly obeyed. Nearing the limousine, the raspy voice was clearly irritated as it rose in volume to make his meaning CLEAR to his companion. Jubilee and the team at ORB headquarters barely breathed as they listened to the raspy voice, enraged now, as it reached the limousine.

"You may NOT accompany me! Return to the yacht and insure that all is proceeding according to the time schedule. I'll be at "Chez Geaux" if you have need of me... but I would STRONGLY advise you to MAKE sure you comply with my instructions. Now, LEAVE me... I have an appointment with a roulette table."

The door of the limousine slammed shut, followed immediately by the squeal of tires as the limo pulled away from the pier, heading into the streets of the city. The raspy voice, a force to be reckoned with, was headed toward Team SWORD!

Chapter 5

It's All in the Attitude

Team SWORD had "Chez Geaux" blanketed with ORB agents, and had planned for any contingency. They expected Big B.A.D. to show up, and were awaiting news from Control Central.

Jake, Sorbet, and Jack had just completed a wide sweep of the casino, casually checking the status of the ORB agents, when they received word from Jubilee.

"SWORD, SWORD... this is Central. The BAD ball is rolling your way. Expect him in 5 minutes. Make CERTAIN it bounces YOUR way! Out!" Jubilee's transmission was cryptic to anyone not familiar with ORB jargon. SWORD was being advised that their target would be IN HOUSE in 5 minutes and they were to make SURE that they got the information they needed!

The Guardians exchanged glances. No small task here... they were to coerce BIG B.A.D. into voluntarily giving up information! They surveyed the casino, watching their Terriers work the room. These wee warriors had faced much worse in their adventurous lives... this would be no different. Smiling at each other, the three Guardians shrugged.

"Copy Central," Jake replied. "It's as good as DONE!"

Jack chuckled. "Well, THAT just burned our bridges! Now we're OBLIGATED to succeed!"

Sorbet rolled her eyes, gave Jack a quick thwack on his shoulder, then smiled as the three Guardians made their final rounds.

Minutes passed, then suddenly the mood in the casino changed dramatically. Where there had been joviality, laughter, and excitement... the air was now thick with tension. The ORB agents were immediately on alert, glancing around to determine the reason for the sudden change.

At the top of the landing, stood an enormous man, silent and unmoving. His 6 foot 5 inch height did little to conceal the enormous girth of the man. He was dressed in a white linen suit, the jacket open to reveal a white silk shirt with diamond stud buttons. The man was bald, with hard, cold eyes that missed nothing. His triple chin rested heavily on his chest, crumpling the crisp collar of the silk shirt he wore.

He held an elegant platinum cane in his left hand, and twirled it negligently as he surveyed the crowded casino before him. Anyone watching the man's entrance was mesmerized by the blinding glare of the rotating platinum cane and the brilliance of the 20 carat diamond that rested on the exquisite knob atop the cane.

The man waited until the room quietened, and watched as most patrons of the casino looked around to discover the source of the sudden silence. ONLY when all eyes fell on HIM did he casually lay a huge, beefy hand on the sleek, oak banister, to deftly conceal his limp as he made his way down the stairs to the floor of the casino.

The man seemed to suck the very life out of the room as he crossed the casino floor and made his way to the Roulette table. There was now a heaviness in the air, the room was almost paralized with fear... yet the man seemed to draw strength from the tenseness he'd generated.

Only when he neared the Roulette table did his pace slow. His accustomed seat at the HEAD of the table was unavailable!!! He had ALWAYS chosen THAT chair, THAT place. He EXPECTED it! People deferred to him... in ALL things!!!

The big man stopped... and stared. His eyes narrowed dangerously as he tried to stare DOWN the inhabitant of HIS place at the Roulette table. The chair's inhabitant finally looked up... ONLY because all activity at the table had become frozen in time, with the croupier frozen fearfully at the wheel.

"You're in my PLACE!" the huge man rasped."You will get up... NOW!"

The inhabitant of the chair turned and leaned back, then propped an elbow on the back of the chair. Smiling, he nodded slightly to the huge newcomer.... his gaze strong and unwavering as he stared back at the man.

Finally, the inhabitant of the chair leaned foward, just enough to grasp a large stack of chips in his paw. With a sharp pop, he laid them on the table and announced his bet... "Red 8"! With a forceful glare, he willed the croupier to spin the Roulette wheel. The room was silent as a tomb, the only sound heard was the clacking of the ball as it rolled around the wheel.

Finally coming to a stop, the croupier cleared his throat, glanced fearfully at the huge man across the table from him and then looked to the head of the table and announced, "Red 8... the WINNER!"

"Who AREEEEEE you!!" the voice rasped angrily.

The inhabitant of the coveted chair leaned forward to collect his winnings. Only THEN did he look back to the enraged man standing near him. He leisurely picked up a $500 chip from his winnings and began expertly twirling it in his paw. Raising one eyebrow, he stared boldly at the huge man.

"Rambunctious ....  RILEY Rambunctious!"

Chapter 6

DANGER in the Streets

Jubilee and the staff at Control Central were riveted to the monitors, watching the exchange between Double R8 and 'BIG B.A.D.', with paws pressed to their earphones to make certain that they didn't miss a word!

Suddenly, the communication panel alarm sounded at Mackie's console. The Control team immediately turned their attention to the new target.

"Millie, keep focusing on Double R8... don't miss a word!" Jubilee ordered as she ran her paw lightly over the familiar knobs, dials, and buttons of the Master Panel until she located the communications array. Switching from Mode 1 to Mode 2, she listened as her headphones crackled with the change in accoustics.

"Go ahead, DANGER..." she commanded.

"We have a situation, Control... but expect to have it resolved as soon as Callie and Haley finish separating the pile of fighters," Laddie Z. calmly announced.

Taking a breath, he continued, "Karey L, Chak, Mason B, Bailey D, Margie May V, Gracie Girl, Megan Daisy W, Henry S, Rory K, Rascal, Campbell D, Willow C, Rumble, Pagan Marie, Lucytu, Libby T, Bert W, and Austin Tucker had moved to the far corner of the run down dive at this location... where the BAD gang was playing pool."

"Our ORB agents stirred up a conversation with the BAD guys. It only took a BIT of coersion by our agents, who had walked up to the pool table, talking among themselves about the heavy workload and the unrealistic expectations of their boss. The ORB agents were leaning against the wall, watching the pool game...still 'bad-mouthing' their boss. The BAD guys immediately began chiming in, and really unloaded on BIG BAD!"

"One of them was ESPECIALLY enraged by his treatment at BAD..." Laddie continued, "and began mentioning some VERY critical info. He was just getting warmed UP, when another BAD guy threw a punch and shut 'im up!"

"Control..." Laddie took a deep breath. "BAD is up to NO GOOD!!! This 'Bristow' guy was talking OUT OF HIS HEAD! He sounded NUTS! Mentioned ROCKETS and WATER VATS and something about the MOON and the Earth's CORE!"

Laddie stopped... and allowed Jubilee to absorb the information. Jubilee paused only a moment, then replied, "Laddie, bring 'Bristow' in... don't let BAD see you take him. He has to 'disappear', leave no trace. Get him HERE, IMMEDIATELY! Promise him whatever it takes, just keep him QUIET and get him HERE!"

Jubilee was silent for a second, then added, "Uhhh, Laddie... why are Callie and Haley breaking up a FIGHT????"

Laddie snickered. "Ohhhhhh, welllllllllll...... things sorta got out of hand there at the end of the discussion they were having! Our team was arguing with BAD about who had the "BADDEST" boss. They said their boss was NAMED 'Big BAD' and that HE was the 'baddest' boss! Team DANGER disagreed, their reasoning being that no one could out-BAD their Scottie boss, THE Wild Child! Things sorta fell apart right after that. It really turned into quite a donnybrook!"

"OH, and tell "K" that when the ORB agents were COMPLAINING 'bout her.... they didn't MEAN IT! JUST BUSINESS!!! " Laddie said, laughing, then ended with a quick "DANGER, out!"

Jubilee sat quietly for a moment, organizing her thoughts. Then, turning to her Control team, she announced, "Guys... we have a BIG problem!

Chapter 7

Time Critical

The atmosphere at ORB Control Central had suddenly changed from quiet stealth to organized bedlam. Millie was focusing her attention on Double R8's confrontation with Big BAD. Jubilee had just received a report from Laddie at Team DANGER, reporting the grave and serious intel that Team DANGER had gathered.

The Control team was still adjusting to THAT information when Mackie called out, "JUBILEE! We have a RED LINE call inbound from Team TIGER!!!"

Jubilee turned, waved her paw at Mackie to acknowledge that she'd heard, and reached back to the control panel to change the frequency, yet again.

"Scotty, switch over to Mode 2, coordinate retrieval of Laddie's informant," she ordered, as she hurriedly adjusted the signal strength and answered, "Go ahead, TIGER..."

"Control... Bear here. We have INTEL! Haley D., Capt'n Eddie, Connor B., and Sam E have spent the last hour down under the yacht... yes, UNDER, Control! That guy that was kicked out of the limousine has been on the phone the entire time, and he's not HAPPY... not one little BIT!"

Jubilee smiled as Bear chuckled, then continued his report. "We're only getting bits and pieces... as he was too busy eating his po'boy to enunciate clearly! Wait one, Control!"

Sounds of splashing water could be heard, followed by footsteps fading into the distance. For several moments, silence reigned.

"0RB, we're clear now. Just had several of the crew leave the yacht, headed into town. That just leaves our guy, down in the forward cabin. He has made reference to THREE sites, Control... Breen Mountain, Glanik Island, and Sutton Glen."

Bear took a breath, then hurriedly continued. "Alex M, Gracie G, and Agnes D used the sound absorption synthesizer on the hull, and got quite a bit of data on these sites. Wait one, Control."

Almost immediately another voice was heard. "Alex M here, Control. BAD has 3 sites, all inter-connected to provide materials and capabilities to accomplish one ENORMOUS project! They're constructing some sort of mammoth liquid container at Breen Mtn, with potential storage of 700,000,000,000 gallons! We have no clue WHY they need this. We KNOW they have a major facility at Glanik Island that is using some lethal chemicals, but we can find no purpose for it... nothing that would give us any idea of their overall goal. But what worries us MORE is the discussion of the rocket assembly at Sutton Glen! They're planning to launch a Saturn 5 rocket to the MOON in 3 days' time, Control!"

This brought Jubilee to a standing position. "They're launching WHAT??? WHEN?"

The room had gone deathly silent, as the rest of the Control team saw Jubilee's sudden reaction to Team TIGER'S report. Jubilee turned to her team. "Channel B, Mode 3," she ordered. The team immediately switched their headsets to the appropriate frequency, and listened.

Alex repeated, "Yes, Control...they will launch this rocket in 3 days. Target unknown, reason unknown. We DO know it'll launch from a site known as Sutton Glen... we do NOT have a GPS lock on that site as yet, nor have we isolated the other locations. What we CAN tell you is that this yacht is planning to sail tomorrow morning at dawn, with Big BAD on board, and it is headed to BAD Headquarters!"

Jubilee inhaled sharply. "BAD headquarters!!! We can FINALLY pinpoint Big BAD's base of operations!! Good work, Alex! Team TIGER is to maintain surveillance of the yacht, marking all comings and goings! Control Out!"

Turning to her Control Team, Jubilee sighed heavily. "This is the opportunity we've been waiting for! We MUST locate BAD headquarters, learn the purpose AND location of those alternate sites Alex mentioned, then ELIMINATE the threat at each site."

Sammy Jo, Mackie, Scottie, and Millie exchanged glances. They all realized that this was about to become VERY complicated!

Jubilee cleared her throat, and added, "And we only have a 3-day Window of Opportunity!"

Chapter 8

An ORB Agenda

The Control Team looked at the data they'd accumulated, so far. Three sites, all inter-related, all tied to some plot that involved a rocket being launched to the Moon... an unimaginably large vat system being built at a place called Breen Mountain, a third site with who-knows-WHAT going on... and the BAD base of operations, that no one had been able to locate.

Jubilee took only a second to consider her options, then turned to the master control panel and pushed the yellow orb at the center of the instrument board. Immediately, the center monitor changed from the casino scene to the rich wood paneling of ORB headquarters.

"K" appeared on the monitor, stacks of satellite telemetry spread across her huge, antique desk, and backed by monitors displaying the same images seen at Control Central.

"Has Team DANGER reached your location with that informant yet?" asked "K", a concerned frown on her face. "He has vital information that we could utilize to our advantage.

Jubilee quickly updated "K" on the latest data from Team TIGER, adding that they now had a serious time deadline for this operation.

"K" listened quietly to her Team leader's report, then tilted her head, squinted her eyes, and without an indecisive bone in her body, immediately responded with, "Okay, THIS is what we're going to do!"

Jubilee and her operations team immediately began taking notes.

"K" rapidly detailed the new ORB agenda. "Okay... we may have located those 3 sites mentioned in Team TIGER's intel. Knowing WHAT we were looking for has made it much easier to narrow our search parameters. ORB computers have 'hits' on several sites that seem to fit your descriptions. We can get the GPS coordinates to the Teams, by the time they embark on their assault missions."

"K" paused a moment, and brought up an image on the computer screen, displaying the ORB teams. "Team DANGER is in the process of coming in with their informant. As soon as Laddie delivers 'Bristow' .... you, Sammy Jo, Mackie, Scotty T, and Millie R will interrogate him. It is CRUCIAL that you get as much information from him as possible!"

"Team DANGER will IMMEDIATELY take 'Sleek 1' and make all possible speed toward Sutton Glen. They're going to have to take out that ROCKET! I'll relay the exact coordinates to Captain Scotty once Team DANGER is enroute to their target," she explained.

"K" leaned toward the computer and quickly typed in the target assigned to Team DANGER. The information was immediately updated on the monitors at Control Central.

"Next..." "K" continued. "Pull Team SWORD out of 'Chez Geaux'. They are to rendezvous with 'OLD Sleek' and Captain Digger for immediate deployment to Breen Mountain to eliminate the holding tanks that are hidden deep within the mountains. We think it's located in the most remote part of the Himalayas, but will have the precise locations for them within the hour."

Jubilee shocked everyone by choosing that moment to laugh out LOUD! "Ohhhhhh, my GOSH!" she exclaimed. "I haven't seen Captain Digger since Katie's 'BASH on the Bayou'.... and I'd imagine that 'OLD Sleek' hasn't had an outing in AGES! This WILLLL be fun!"

Then, returning to the crisis at hand, she cleared her throat and replied, "Team SWORD will be immediately informed of their new orders!"

"K" smiled and nodded at Jubilee's recalling of the long-ago BASH... then got back down to business.

"As for Glanik Island, we have virtually NOOOO information about the function of that location, but we DO have telemetry coordinates. Team TIGER will report immediately to the marina at Saint-Tropez where they will board a day-excursion sailboat, presumably for a trip down the coast."

"Once at sea, and out of sight of the city," she continued, "they will rendezvous with the S.S. SharkTeeth, a nuclear submarine, which will deliver them to Glanik Island. They will come ashore under cover of darkness, as the SharkTeeth has orders to ramain a mile offshore to avoid detection. Team TIGER will neutralize the facility at Glanik Island."

Jubilee nodded. "TIGER to Glanik Island... SWORD to Breen Mtn..... DANGER to Sutton Glen... check! Now, what about........"

"K" interrupted...."Yeah, I know.... that leaves BIG BAD and this invisible headquarters of his. THIS is what has defeated all the previous agencies. They can not get NEAR Big BAD!"

" Well," 'K' paused for a second. "It seems that we already HAVE accomplished THAT feat. We have an agent within FEET of him, at this very MOMENT! AND, a team that has already taken ON some of the BAD guys!"

The team at Control Central sat motionless, waiting. They KNEW what they were about to hear, but couldn't IMAGINE how this would ever succeed. They winced visibly as "K" issued her final order.

"We send Double R8 AND Team Royal Hiland Kilted Scotterriers in with BIG BAD... on his YACHT!"

      Don't remember "OLD Sleek" or 'Captain Digger'??
      CLICK on "Site MENU" below...
      Go to BASH Stories and read "BASH on the Bayou" -- Chapter 1 !!!

Chapter 9

A Dangerous Deployment

The ORB Sporting Goods Store sat on the busiest street in Saint-Tropez, and provided all manner of sporting goods for active jet-setters. However, as with ALL ORB shops around the world, far below the shop was a fully equipped, state of the art Control Room, providing ORB with worldwide fully functional bases for any active operation.

"K" laid out the assignments for Operation Jubilee, then paused. She saw the Command Team watching her, she knew that this was a most critical operation, and she trusted them implicitly.

Smiling at her Command Team, "K" said, "Our ORB agents are the best in the world. I am quite aware that we're spreading ourselves awfully thin on this operation, but we all know that they'll succeed brilliantly. A Scottie would accept nothing LESS!"

With her paw raised, "K" offered Jubilee a salute, and ended with "Get it finished, Jubilee!"

The connection to ORB headquarters terminated, the monitors returned to the numerous sites around Saint-Tropez. Jubilee took a deep breath and announced, "Let's get it DONE!"

The Control Room transformed into a flurry of activity. Team leaders were contacted, destinations were given, and orders issued. They had full confidence in the ORB operatives, and knew that events in the field were progressing quickly. Everyone was focusing on making the final preparations when the security panel for the Control Room door activated.

Scotty Tucker turned and quickly scanned the camera array that was posted right outside the Control Room door. Smiling, he flipped a switch to release the multiple bolts on the steel door, then watched as the door was pushed open with such force that it slammed noisily into the wall.

Into the room sauntered Laddie, Rory K, Dougan G, Maggie S, Allie G, Murphy B, and Billy D. Each had a paw on a very confused, unkempt, blindfolded man. Murphy strolled over to a nearby chair, pulled it away from the Control Panel, and motioned for his DANGER teammates.

They escorted their 'guest' to the chair and, with a gentle shove, deposited him into the empty chair. Turning to Jubilee, Laddie announced, "Mr. Bristow has decided that it IS in his best interests to cooperate with us... but he has NO desire for 'Big BAD' to find out that he has been... shall we say, CHATTY... about B.A.D.'s operations!"

Laughing, Rory added, "And it only took us one chewed shoe, and two torn trouser cuffs to CONVINCE him..... along with 'THE LOOK' that Allie kept throwing him!"

Jubilee smiled at the DANGER agents, thanked them, then motioned them silently from the room. Hearing the door close behind the agents, she turned to her Control Team, and signaled them to take Bristow to the recording room next door. Millie watched Sammy Jo and Mackie escort the informant out of the Control Room, then turned to Jubilee for instructions.

"Get him talking... we KNOW he is quite unhappy with Big B.A.D.... take advantage of that. And, do it QUICK! We need his information about B.A.D. headquarters. We're sending ORB agents into an UNKNOWN situation!!!" Jubilee ordered, as she turned to the Control panel. Her paw lightly skimmed the familiar knobs until she found the communications array.

Jubilee quickly adjusted her headset, then keyed in Team SWORD's frequency.

"SWORD... come in," she called.

Jake answered almost immediately. "Control, we've boarded 'Old Sleek' and are enroute to 'Point B'... expect arrival at our target point within the next 12 hours. We've received the satellite images and are planning our assault. Captain Digger plans to put us as CLOSE to Breen Mtn. as possible, but we know the elevation from Everest to K2 to Breen will be a factor. Team SWORD is preparing now... parachutes & snow equipment have been strapped on and we are ready for deployment."

Jake listened as Jubilee gave the final okay for assault on Breen Mountain, then ended the communication with "Team SWORD will notify you when we 'go to ground'. Team SWORD... out!"

Jubilee deftly adjusted the communication knob, listened to the static clear... then called, "TIGER... report!"

Eddie responded. "TIGER here... we just transferred from our sailing sloop to our underwater transportation. The Sharkteeth will be underway within the next 5 minutes. The Captain estimates our arrival at Glanik by dawn tomorrow. Belle, Bear, Sadie, and Sammy are already working on our underwater assault. Will send a signal when we're in position and ready to deploy!"

Jubilee acknowledged Team TIGER's report,signed off, and once again changed the frequency.

"DANGER... report!" she commanded.

"DANGER here," Haley replied. "Team DANGER has rendezvoused with 'Sleek 1'. We're awaiting our Laddie group, and expect their arrival within the next 3-4 minutes. Captain Scotty estimates 15 hours of travel time, to arrive at assault point in time for a daylight attack. Team DANGER reports everything will be ready to take out Sutton Glen. Wait one, Control... Laddie and his team just arrived. Capt'n is preparing to take off now... will report in when we're ready for our assault. DANGER out..."

Jubilee smiled proudly as she thought of the well-trained ORB agents... prepared for any eventuality, and always up for a challenge.

She quickly made another frequency change. "Royal Kilted Scotterriers... come in!"

"General Cammeron, here" Cammster answered. "We've stationed ourselves outside the Chez Geaux... and await your orders."

"Good work, General!" Jubilee replied. "Quietly position your team around the casino... keep your eyes on Double R 8!! He's about to be told about the change of plans... and will need you to be READY when he signals!"

"Affirmative, will immediately reposition our team," General Cammeron replied. "Tell Rambunctious that he only has to raise his paw.....and we'll be there! Kilted... OUT!"

Jubilee took a deep breath, exhaled slowly.... then made one last adjustment to the communications array. This time, there was no static... it was a crisp, clean channel. She silently listened to the conversation.

"Well," RR8 replied. "If I'd known you wanted to join our game, I'd have certainly have made a point to provide an additional chair... for you!" A wicked smile spread across Riley's handsome face.

Big B.A.D. began to sputter, then roared off onto a tirade, venting his rage directly toward RR8, who remained immobile and unphased.

NO one noticed RR8's body stiffen ever so slightly as he heard Jubilee speaking softly into his embedded earpiece. He continued to display a relaxed smile for the world, as he listened to Jubilee give him new instructions.

"Operation Jubilee has begun," she informed him softly. "All teams have deployed and are enroute to Breen Mtn, Sutton Glen, and Glanik Island. YOU will locate the headquarters of B.A.D., by accompanying him to his base when he returns to his yacht!"

No one noticed the slight glimmer in RR8's eyes at this revelation. No one realized that he was quickly changing strategy in MID-CONVERSATION with one of the worst villains the world had ever known.

Big B.A.D. was working himself up into a royal tantrum now, and had totally lost focus with the suave spy seated in front of him! Big B.A.D. ranted... while RR8 calmly listened to the embedded transmitter in his ear, smiling comfortably.

"The Royal Kilted Scotterriers have deployed around your position and General Cammeron awaits your signal to close in on your position. His transmitter has been reprogrammed to this frequency, so that he'll be aware of your situation. You are to get Big B.A.D. to his yacht... with YOU ANDDDDD with the Royal Kilted Scotterriers accompanying him to BAD headquarters. Will await word when you're enroute to BAD base! Control OUT!"

General Cammeron, sitting quietly at a nearby blackjack table, smiled broadly as he closely watched RR8's reaction to Jubilee's change in orders. He heard RR8's soft sigh as Jubilee ended her transmission. He saw the almost imperceptible nod of RR8's head at the amazing instructions he'd been given.

RR8, after only a few seconds, had quickly come up with a new approach.... PLAN B!

Big B.A.D. was still venting, when RR8 stood up, extended his paw, and smiled broadly. "I'm Rambunctious... and I'm about to become your new best FRIEND!"

Chapter 10

Selling Swampland

RR8 had caught Big B.A.D. totally off guard... "your new best friend!"

All activity around the roulette table had stopped... no one spoke. Everyone was watching this stranger, seated in Big B.A.D.'s chair... calmly smiling while announcing his friendship to the evil villain.

RR8 used Big B.A.D.'s momentary confusion to his advantage. Reaching into his jacket, he pulled out his wallet, flipped it open, and withdrew a business card. Flashing it at Big B.A.D., he quickly slid the card for his next dental appointment back into the wallet, then proudly announced, "Rambunctious Rocketry!!! Rambunctious is my name..... rockets my game! Rambunctious Rocketry provides quality rockets for any and all purposes. We construct, install, launch, service, and recover our rockets. A MONEY BACK guarantee, SIR! You'll NEVER regret this decision to utilize RAMBUNCTIOUS ROCKETRY to broaden your corporate impact on your competition!"

RR8 took ONE huge breath, and tore ahead. "My sources tell me that you've had a recent "issue" with your feeble attempts at rocketry...."

Big B.A.D.'s sharp inhale was exactly what RR8 was waiting for.

"NO, NO...", RR8 raced onward. "Don't try to explain, it's very common for the "uninformed" to THINK they're capable of dealing with propulsion and targeting, only to find that they're sadly inept with such Scientific issues."

Double R 8 paused only long enough to grab another much-needed breath of air, then forged ahead.

"I TELL ya what I'll do!!! My team and I will HELP you out! YESSIR, we'll put our expertise at your disposal....we'll SOLVE your rocket issues... we'll provide you with the most PERFECT rocket product you've ever seen. My team can make the impossible POSSIBLE! We LIVE for making people's rocket dreams come true! And we ARE the BEST at what we DO!"

General Cammster sat at the nearby table, watching Riley's non-stop blither overpower the evil villain. He shook his head in amazement... RR8 could sell swampland in the desert, he thought, chuckling. His embedded transmitter caught every word of the conversation going on nearby. He waited and watched... looking for the signal that RR8 needed him! But, with THIS show that Riley was putting on....there was no TELLING what part HE would play in this little drama!

RR8 smiled broadly at Big B.A.D. and ended with, "NOWWWWW, when do we leave?"

Big B.A.D. was dumbstruck! He stared blankly at this smooth-talking 'car salesman' who stood in front of him, talking a 'blue streak' about ROCKETS! He leaned his huge girth against the Roulette table for support, literally dizzy from the verbal onslaught!

Feeling confused, Big B.A.D. asked simply, "How'd you know I was having rocket problems?"

"AHHHHHHHHH, THAT!" RR8 smoothly replied. "Well, it seems that one of your technician's cousin's neighbor's sister's boyfriend's boss mentioned it to me yesterday at a conference I attended. Soooooooo, I decided that it certainly sounded as though you MIGHT need my help! And, YESSIR......I do believe you just MIGHT benefit from my 'expertise'!!"

Raising one eyebrow and angling his head slightly, RR8 added, "Now.....if you're NOT in need of our product line and services...then we'll just say Au Revoir and move on to the next client on our list!! BUSY, BUSY, ya know...can't let grass grow under our paws... money to be made....always money to be made!!! WELL, what's it gonna be, HUH?? Ya need our help?? YES or NO!!!"

RR8 took one long breath, then crossed his arms, cocked his head, stared at the huge villain, and WAITED.

For the first time in anyone's memory, Big B.A.D. was rendered speechless. He simply STARED at this sleazy salesman in front of him. After a moment, however, his business sense kicked in. He WAS having issues with his rocket systems, especially the Glanik Island component. He DID need someone knowledgeable about rocket systems.

Big B.A.D. shook his head. He'd NEVER done anything on the 'spur of the moment' like this..... but this guy was a 'silver-tongued devil' and SEEMED to know the trade. He sighed, and offered his hand.

"Yes sir, Mr. Rambunctious, I think you CAN help us!! Now, I have a time constraint here, so how quickly can you gather your team, as it's imperative that we leave IMMEDIATELY!!"

RR8 laughed, extended his paw, and responded. "Just call me Riley!! Ohhhhhhhh, we're ALWAYS ready!!!"

At that, Riley made a casual motion with his paw. Almost immediately, General Cammster appeared at his side, propped an arm on the back of RR8's chair, and smiled at their new client.

"Meet Cam, our project foreman. He'll take care of the manpower... his team is in-house right now, waiting. We're ready to leave NOW!"

"Come along, then. My yacht is ready for departure NOW. We can discuss details enroute. I've had quite a problem with manpower, but think that now, we might be able to overcome our difficulties," Big B.A.D. said.

Offering his beefy hand, Big B.A.D. added, "Ohhhhhhh, and I'm Bigelow Badley. It's nice to meet you!"

RR8, Cammster, and Badley walked out of the casino together. Once outside, the rest of Royal Highland Scotterriers fell in behind, joining the group. Introductions were quickly made and the entire group crowded into Bigelow's waiting limousine.

Within minutes, Bigelow and his new rocket team had arrived at the pier. He led the procession to the yacht, jabbering happily with his new workers, patting RR8 on the back, and feeling like his problems would finally be solved!

Jubilee listened silently to the conversations as the group boarded the yacht. Big B.A.D. was going to TAKE them to BAD headquarters. She smiled and shook her head at Riley's audacity.

"Rambunctious Rocketry???" she whispered. "AMAZING!"

Chapter 11

Operation JUBILEE

Big B.A.D. was thrilled with his new rocket experts. As he boarded his yacht, he ordered the Captain to proceed to B.A.D. Headquarters with all possible speed.

The yacht's anchor was raised, as the yacht immediately made its way out of the harbor and into open ocean. The bow of the yacht rose high in the water as the vessel skimmed the waves at a breakneck pace.

Happy with how things were progressing, Big B.A.D. escorted the large contingent of guests to the Main Salon, for refreshments and a more detailed conversation on the feasibility of rocketry.

RR8 glanced around the lavishly appointed Main Salon, at the 360 ocean view and the stewards who silently moved around the room, offering snacks and treats on platinum and crystal serving trays.

He smiled to himself as he watched the Royal Kilted team maintain their cover, while at the same time taking in their surroundings and looking for anything that could be used against B.A.D.. Some team members were casually strolling around the salon, leisurely admiring the view. Others were more interested in the Master Control panel in the far corner of the salon, that appeared to be Big B.A.D.'s base of operations, but was definitely out of "surveillance" reach with the large number of BAD employees that were scurrying around the Salon.

General Bo'sun and General Cammster quietly deployed their team to various parts of the yacht, HOPING to gather useful information on the B.A.D. organization. Lt. Hot Rod, Captain Gyppsy Rose Kitty, Lt. Morley R, Lt. Duncan L, and Captain Angel were 'strolling the deck', presumably listening to their iPODS, which were actually calculating exact GPS position and sailing direction of the yacht, and transmitting the data to ORB Control.

Corporal Maggie May, Lt. Kelley L, and Corporal Molly R were gathering first-hand information from several of the B.A.D. crewmen... by flirting outrageously with the smitten deckhands.

Under the guise of checking their rocket telemetry equipment, Pvt.Monte and Pvt. Malleagh R were systematically x-raying the lower levels of the yacht, finding several secret power systems during their search.

Meanwhile, Pupscout Tana, bold as brass, had managed to position herself right in the MIDDLE of the Master Control station. Claiming to be searching for her ball that had rolled under the desk, she had managed to pull off a stack of papers that had been perched on the edge of the desk. Now, very apologetic, she was calmly browsing through Big B.A.D.'s paper trail, now scattered all over the floor.

RR8, seeing Big B.A.D. angrily rise from his cushioned chaise lounge, calmly reached over and grasped Badley's arm, interrupting the villain's progress.

"Please, she MADE the mess.... SHE must clean it up! The lesson will not be learned if YOU go HELP her pick UP the papers! She'll be more careful next time, that we BOTH know!!!"

Double R 8 chuckled knowingly. "What was YOUR biggest disaster? I'm sure YOUR Mom had you cleaning up after some catastrophe in YOUR youth!!! Mine was the TOYBOX! Never DID think those toys belonged HIDDEN away in that ole box, hidden by that lid!!! But, I spent enough afternoons cleaning my room UP... to Mom's specifications, I tell ya!"

Big B.A.D. stood still a moment, and just stared at the talkative Rambunctious. He'd never known anyone who talked so incessantly... and who, with very little effort, seemed to keep confuse and befuddle everyone around him! Big B.A.D. glanced over at the careless youngster who was wrinkling, stepping on, and ripping up his contracts, spreadsheets, and mission statements.

She didn't seem to be focused on WHAT she was picking up, she just seemed to be wadding the papers into a huge, rumpled mass... and throwing them haphazardly onto the desk.

RR8 smiled and slapped Big B.A.D.'s arm. "She'll learn the HARD way, Bigelow! Don't try to HELP HER... I APPRECIATE your desire to assist, but noooooooo.... she'll have to do it alone! I'll talk to her as soon as she finishes. Don't worry about her! Sit back down, Badley!"

Double R 8 kept up a steady stream of casual conversation, expertly pulling Bigelow Badley into a rousing discussion of such matters as 'chocolate or caramel'... 'could LSU repeat in 2008' .... and a very heated comparison of tuxedo styles. Occasionally, RR8 would furtively glance at Tana, making certain that she was completing her task efficiently and quickly.

It was the soft hum in his embedded earpiece transmitter that suddenly drew his attention. Listening to Big B.A.D. extol the virtues of yachts over jet travel, Riley continued to smile and show interest, while at the same time, listening to reports coming in from the groups of Royal Kilted team members around the yacht.

"I understand," RR8 replied, apparently speaking to Big B.A.D., but actually acknowledging the simultaneous reports he was receiving. Nodding in agreement with something Big B.A.D. was saying, RR8 glanced around the room, caught General Cammster's attention with a slightly raised eyebrow, then returned his focus to the evil villain chatting amiably in front of him.

Cammster strolled over to stand next to Double R 8 and listened to the conversation. Almost immediately, RR8 commented, "Well, Bigelow, you're in luck! Cam, here, is quite the expert on color variance in the automobile industry. He'd be a PERFECT one to listen to your concerns on the faulty color of your limousine! Carry on, Cam... I have to go have a small chat with our paper pup over there!"

Rising, RR8 casually slapped Cam on the back, then stepped around the side table and leisurely ambled toward Tana, who was effectively stalling the task as long as possible. Seeing RR8 approach, she smiled broadly and scooped the last remaining pages off the floor. Clutching them in her arms, she crushed them all to her chest, then stood up on 'tippy-paw' to shove them all up onto the desktop, far above her head.

Double R 8 walked over to Tana, helped arrange the last group of crumpled pages on the desk, then placed a paw on her shoulder, and began talking softly. Tana occasionally nodded, as she listened attentively. To the casual observer, Rambunctious was having a 'talk' with the overactive youngster.

"Riley!" Tana whispered excitedly. "I took pictures of ALL of those pages. The 'tag-cam' worked great. The photos have already been uploaded to Auntie Jubilee, just like you wanted."

"Here," Tana said proudly. "This mini-flashdrive has all the data encrypted. Just insert it into your watch to download the info to your watch computer."

She slipped her wee paw into his larger one, appearing to others as though she was accepting the wisdom of his advice. The unseen mini-flashdrive exchanged paws, as the two seemed to continue their conversation. Tana continued to stare at RR8, occasionally nodding, always listening.

However, Double R8 was now talking to ORB Command. Quietly he listened to Jubilee as she hurriedly relayed her information. The longer she spoke, the more difficult it became to maintain an outward calm. He simply could NOT believe what he was hearing.

"Bristow spilled it all," Jubilee said. "He's TERRIFIED of that man! Says the man is CRAZY! And I HAVE to agree with him, Riley! That man is planning to confiscate all the water on planet EARTH... to move it to his own, private reservoirs and hold Earth hostage... slaves to his will!!!"

"Breen Mountain contains the access point to the enormous storage tanks deep beneath the Earth's surface. He's planning to blow a hole in the ocean floor, and drain the water into his holding tanks! Glanik Island is the trigger point for the operation. That's where the 'drain' will be. Sutton Glen has a series of mega-rockets, all heading toward the Moon, where he plans to set up his headquarters. These rockets will carry millions of gallons of fresh water that he plans to stockpile on the Moon. Their timeline is counting down.... we have less than 18 hours before he triggers this plan of his!"

Jubilee took a quick breath, then quietly added,"Are you and the Royal Kilted Team ready?"

Briefly, RR8 answered, "Tana has uploaded the documents to you. We'll be at Big B.A.D. headquarters within the hour. The MINUTE we hit the ground, we'll initiate OPERATION JUBILEE! Coordinate ALLLLL assaults on my signal! You'll know.... wait for word from me. Big B.A.D. MUST be at headquarters, that's the only way we can destroy the Main Computer system!! RR8...out!"

Double R 8 smiled at Tana, patted her on the arm, and together they walked across the Main Salon and through the French doors to the deck. Finding a pair of deck chairs, Riley sat down, then motioned for Tana to sit in the chair next to him. He reached into his pocket and pulled something out. Quietly, he inflated a green and yellow polka-dotted innertube, then laid it in her lap.

"Okay, lass," he said. "Put this on! Things are about to get really exciting, and we want to make sure that you're safe!"

Tana leaped up, her paws on her hips! "NUH UNH!!! No SIR! Not GONNA!"

Her eyes flashed, her chin jutted out... she was incensed!!!

Riley smiled. "Let me explain it THIS way! Ya wanna go 'blow stuff up' with us??"

Tana's head nodded vigorously!

"Good!" Riley replied. "Ya wanna go run around and tear stuff UP with us???"

Tana, growing more excited by the minute, nodded excitedly.

"WELL, then... we're all gonna have 'stuff' on..... YOU have to have 'stuff' on! THIS is YOUR 'stuff'! NOW, get it on... we're running outa TIME! Wait right HERE... the Team will join you here!"

Riley stood up and headed back toward the Main Salon, but stopped at the door and looked back to make certain that Tana was following orders. She'd put the inflated tube around her waist, and was perched on the end of the deck chair, her feet swinging back and forth excitedly.

Entering the Salon, he noticed that Big B.A.D. had left the room. Cammster approached, explaining that they were nearing B.A.D. headquarters and that 'Mr. Badley' had gone to arrange for their arrival.

RR8 quickly gave Cammster a few brief instructions, then ended with..."and the assault will begin when we land. It's much worse than we expected. It's CRITICAL that we succeed. Have the Team wait out on deck. Tana is already there... and don't LOSE her!"

Cammster smiled and nodded, then hurried off to gather the Royal Kilted Scotterrier Brigade.

Double R 8 let his mind replay Jubilee's conversation, as he tried to wrap his mind around a plot that was so evil as to be a threat to the entire world! Shaking his head, he realized that things were critical. They HAD to succeed.

He strolled through the Main Salon, then leisurely wandered through the public areas of the yacht, insuring that all was in readiness. Finally, emerging to join the Royal Kilted team on deck, they eagerly watched as the yacht rapidly closed the distance toward the island ahead.

The yacht slowed, then changed its heading as it neared the pier that stretched out into the harbor, allowing the yacht to glide smoothly alongside and finally settle against the pier with a soft bump.

Big B.A.D. immediately emerged from the bridge, and with his entourage, hurried down the pier toward a waiting limousine. Ordering his entourage to go on to headquarters in a nearby waiting van, Big B.A.D. turned back toward the yacht.

"Come along, Come along!" he called eagerly. "I've sent for a larger vehicle that will accomodate your associates. I MUST go make some calls... I'm on a dreadfully tight schedule right now, so regret that I must leave you to come along at your own pace. But ANYONE here will be able to provide you with whatever you may need. The driver of the bus I've ordered will take you to your accomodations, and will see to your every need. Until later!!!"

And with that, Big B.A.D. slid into the black limousine and quickly sped off.

RR8 and the Royal Kilted Brigade strolled up the pier toward the island. Stepping onto the island, they stopped and took note of their surroundings. The Team quickly reviewed their plan, the assault groups double-checked their transmitters, then they all turned toward Double R 8.

Riley Rambunctious looked at the Brigade of Terriers and nodded. Putting a paw to his ear, he quickly tapped the transmitter twice. Immediately, the channel opened. He said simply, "GO TO GROUND!"

Around the world, at four SEPARATE locations.... OPERATION JUBILEE had just gone ACTIVE!!!

Chapter 12

Breen Mountain

"Go to GROUND!" Captain Digger relayed the attack code to Team SWORD, who were suiting up back in the aft cabin of 'Old Sleek'. "We'll reach the Drop Point in 8 minutes. Get ready, Wee Ones!"

Jake, Sorbet, AND Jack quickly moved through the team, checking parachutes, double-checking equipment, and making final preparations for their Breen Mtn. assault.

Maggie C, Hobbes, Tucker K, and Noots pushed their way through the group, to stand near the aft cargo door. They proudly had their paws clenched around their parachutes' 'ripcord', their eyes eager with excitement.

"YOU can't be first!!" Odie complained. "I wanna go ahead of YOU!"

Jake watched the terriers all surge forward, all wanting to be the first SWORD member out when they jumped. He rolled his eyes.

"It just never ends!" he thought to himself. Then, placing a paw between his teeth, he emitted a sharp whistle. Immediately, everyone turned and stared innocently at him... with a "WHAT'D WE DO?" expression on their excited faces.

"Line up, one BEHIND the other. We're all going out together, so it won't MATTER!" Jake glanced up at the sign on the front bulkhead. Captain 'Digger' had a countdown flashing... 45 seconds before they reached the jump point!!!

"Line up...... NOW!" Jake ordered, as he moved to the rear of the cabin and opened the door to the Cargo Bay. Leading Team SWORD through the Cargo Bay, he stopped at the very back of the plane, where he quickly picked up the intercom phone.

"Captain 'Digger', we're in position. I'll release the Cargo Bay door from here. Give us 30 seconds to exit, then you can hit the automatic close button from the cockpit. We'll be in constant communcation with you, as well as ORB command."

Jack and Sorbet brought up the rear, checking each SWORD member, one last time.

Suddenly, an alarm sounded in the Cargo Bay. "Gooo.....GOOOOOO......GO!" Captain 'Digger' called loudly.

Jake looked back at Team SWORD, at their snow equipment strapped to their backs, at the determined gleam in their eyes, and announced, "Let's GO TO GROUND!!!"

Within 15 seconds, the Cargo Bay was empty and desolate. Captain 'Digger' banked the sleek jet and checked the parachutes that filled the sky. He closed the aft cargo bay door, and watched the parachutes disappear into the snow-covered Himilayas. He switched his radio frequency to "ORB operations", as he gently banked the plane to begin a wide circle around the target.

Team SWORD slowly floated toward a broad cliff on the western face of K2. Each team member took full advantage of the small cannister strapped to their side, providing breathable oxygen at 30,000 feet. The Guardians kept close watch on the team, insuring that all would land within the same target.

The ORB agents landed silently and quietly at the very edge of the mountain ledge, quickly gathered up their parachutes, and hurriedly buried the now-unnecessary equipment in the heavy snowdrifts against the mountain. Harmony and Lucy pulled out their binoculars and searched the valley far below. Their target was nestled at the far end of the valley, tucked between two of the tallest mountains in the Himalayas.

"There, to the left of that chasm," Lucy said. They surveyed their target, decided on the approach, then quickly moved back to the group, to give final instructions.

"ORB, we're at elevation above Point B," Ceilidh spoke quietly into her communications array. "Will notify you when we descend to target. Give us 5 minutes... SWORD out!"

Jake looked at Ceilidh, doubt written on his face. "FIVE minutes??? That's SEVERAL thousand feet down, almost STRAIGHT DOWN!"

"NOT to worry, Jake!" Dughul reassured Jake. "We'll just ski FAST! Let's GO!!!!"

And with that, Team SWORD leaped out over the edge of the ledge, straight onto the extreme slope of the mountain. The Guardians immediately followed, and were hard-pressed to maintain the breakneck pace of the terriers who were skiing down the mountain with wild abandon.

Amazingly, Team SWORD made the descent without broken bones or lost team members. The Guardians breathed a HUGE sigh of relief as the team threw up plumes of snow as they skiied to a stop in the trees at the edge of the B.A.D. compound.

Quickly, they removed their skis and extra equipment, stashing it in the snow for their departure. Dividing into 3 small teams, they reviewed the plan one last time.

"You are NOT to be spotted, there WILL be NOOO alarms! Set the explosives EXACTLY and precisely. Then, leave... unobserved. Remember, those explosives MUST tear those holding tanks open... and the extraneous charges will send the rock debris into what would have been their vats. Do not MISS!"

Jack, Sorbet, and Jake each took a portion of Team SWORD. The ORB agents slipped silently into the cold, quiet compound. Splitting up, they used the buildings' shadows to hide their progress. With the temperatures hoving below 0, there were workers in sight. Team SWORD silently found their targets for the massive amounts of explosives, and with sill that comes from long years of experience, they quickly planted the charges, set the frequency for a remote detonation, then disappeared back into the shadows and departed.

Within an hour, Team SWORD was back in the safety of the trees beyond the B.A.D. compound. Without a sound, they strapped their equipment back on, then inspected the area for any telltale evidence of their presence. Burdened with their heavy loads, Team SWORD moved back out of the treeline and onto the steep slope of the mountain.

The Guardians were impressed with the quiet efficiency of these agents. Looking at the terriers' faces as they sped down the mountain, swooshing left and right as their skis cut into the soft powdery snow, the Guardians saw only joy and excitement. They'd just crept silently into an enemy base, planted almost a ton of explosives, and escaped without detection.... and now they were just relishing the wind in their beards as they sped down the mountain with reckless abandon.

Having accomplished its task, SWORD now raced down the mountain, heading for a remote runway, where Captain 'Digger' awaited. The Guardians watched their Terriers in awe. These Terriers DID live in the moment!

Jake reached to his belt, flipped a switch, as he quickly skiied around a small tree. "SWORD is armed... blades are 'going to ground'! OUT!"

Chapter 13

Sutton Glen

The agents of Team DANGER were gleefully excited! They were CONVINCED that they'd received the PRIZE assignment! THEY were going to take out the rockets at Sutton Glen. Wee terrier imaginations were working overtime in the main cabin of the ScotCorde, as Captain Scotty headed for their target area.

"NO PARACHUTES?" Mac asked, a devilish smile on his face. "How cool! We're gonna just JUMP!"

"YEAH, RIGHT!" Floyd agreed. "Let's just HOP OUT!"

Clancey, Linus, and Sherman joined in as the group discussed the intricacies of the coming mission.

Callie and Haley strolled down the aisle, listening to the excited conversations. They nodded their heads in wonder as they continued toward the cargo hold, where they began making final arrangements for Team DANGER's assault.

The plastic explosives concerned both Guardians... but they were double-checking the fuses, and were keeping them in separate containers for the trek to the target.

Hurley, Angie, Barney, Brody, Duncan V, and Jake B were organizing the equipment, making certain that each agent's backpack carried no than the allotted 50 pounds. Completing their task, they settled in on top of the backpacks... and waited.

"Okay, DANGER!" Captain Scotty announced over the intercom. "We're nearing our destination. I'll come in at 300 feet, just above the trees.... will cut the engines 4 miles out, and will glide in. I'll put the ScotCorde down in the small field on the far side of the forest."

"Remember, you'll only have a few moments to place the explosives... ORB Command will be scrambling Sutton Glen's telemetry only as long as it takes that thunderstorm to pass off B.A.D.'s radar... that way, B.A.D. will consider it to be electrical interference."

"So get IN... get it DONE.... and get OUT! I'll be here, ready to depart. REMEMBER... the ScotCorde MUST get out before Sutton Glen's telemetry comes back online! Good Luck!!!"

Callie moved to the door to the main cabin, and called for Team DANGER to 'strap up'. The ORB agents' eagerness was obvious, as they rushed down the aisle to prepare for their coming mission. Bedlam reigned in the cargo hold as the agents scrambled around, located their knapsacks, then hurriedly strapped them on.

Haley worked her way through the cargo bay, checking each agent's equipment and insuring that all was ready for their mission. Then, Team DANGER waited.

The ORB agents knew when they were nearing their target.... they felt the ScotCorde descend rapidly, then settle into level flight again. Moments later, the engines shut down, and 'Sleek One' began to glide silently toward the ground.

Team DANGER was on the ground almost before the ScotCorde came to a stop at the edge of the grassy meadow. Haley and Callie quickly had Team DANGER synchronize their watches. Time would be CRUCIAL... they had to complete the task while ORB was scrambling the telemetry signals!

The ORB agents quickly melted into the trees, and proceeded due west toward the rocket installations at the other side of the grove. The forest canopy overhead shielded Team DANGER from B.A.D.'s prying eyes as they raced through the underbrush.

As the two Guardians struggled to stay ahead of the terriers, Haley appreciated the longer legs of the Guardians, as the ORB agents' adrenalin had them running full-out toward their goal. The frantic pace quickly brought Team DANGER to the outer boundary of Sutton Glen and the lethal rockets.

Silently, Callie signaled the agents to split up. She watched as the agents, burdened with their heavy backpacks, expertly crept through the trees, then quietly began placing the plastic charges around each rocket.

Bailey, Karey, Pagan Marie, Darby, Campbell, and Laddie slipped silently away from the group and made their way to the first of six enormous rocket fuel storage tanks. The group separated and quickly placed several charges at the base of each tank. Their task complete, the group hurried back to the rendezvous point to await the rest of Team DANGER.

Bailey spotted him first. Whispering urgently, he warned "LOOK! The guard has finished his loop around the complex... he's coming back a different WAY tonight! Our agents will not EXPECT him to approach from that direction!"

"Guardian...GUARDIAN!" Karey softly called into her communicator. "Guard... East Southeast !"

Almost immediately, the reply came. "Have a visual. Coming out BEHIND him! Proceed to Point X-Ray... will rendezvous there! OUT!"

"Let's get out of here!" Laddie softly suggested. Slipping silently back into the trees, the group made their way to the deepest part of the forest, where they sat down on the gnarled roots of a large tree.

Within minutes, the rest of Team DANGER appeared, coming through the trees at a run. Reunited, the ORB agents sprinted back to Captain Scotty and the waiting ScotCorde.

Reaching Sleek One, Haley and Callie quickly 'counted noses', and, reassured that Team DANGER had all been accounted for, they nodded to Captain Scotty. He quickly moved to the cockpit, and, within seconds, had the ScotCorde racing across the meadow and climbing into the sky.

As Team DANGER relaxed in the Main Cabin, Haley stepped into the cockpit and picked up the radio. Putting the earphones on, she dialed the secure frequency. As the static cleared, Haley made her report.

"DANGER is armed... candle is ready for lighting! DANGER out!"

Chapter 14

Glanik Island

The nuclear submarine, S.S. Sharkteeth, was invisible to the world's technology, cruising along at a depth of 500 fathoms. She cut through the water at 35 knots, using her extensive sonar to 'see' her underwater world.

Team TIGER had received the 'go to Ground' order and were almost at their destination. The Sharkteeth would not be able to surface, nor would she be able to take the agents as close to shore as they'd like. The ORB agents would disembark from the Sharkteeth as she sat on the seafloor, 1 mile offshore. The lengthy underwater swim would be made even MORE dangerous with the massive amount of equipment and materials they'd be carrying ashore.

The Guardians had made certain that the agents had rested as much as possible during the submarine's race toward the target, although Belle, Sammy, and Eddie had been forced to ORDER several agents back to their bunks, after discovering the agents in the Conn, trying to convince the officer on duty to let them look through the telescope!

"I'm sorry!" the Lt.JG had said. "We're at 500 fathoms... you won't SEE the surface from this depth!"

"Well, let's go UP so we CAN look out!!!" Oliver K suggested. "NO ONE will know! Just slide 'er UP, we'll take a quick PEEK through your telescope, and then ya can slip 'er back DOWN here! NOTHING to it!"

Shane, Lucy S, Agnes D, Breezy P, and Carly Rose all enthusiastically agreed, and the group soon had the poor Lt. JG backed into the far corner of the Conn, as they pressed their case.

"Okay, TIGER Team, leave 'im alone! BACK to your bunks... let's GO!" Belle instructed, as she used her huge Great Pyrenees bulk to herd the terriers out of the cramped room.

The would-be sight seers grumbled as they allowed Belle to usher them down the corridor to the crew quarters, where they rejoined the rest of their team.

Bear was helping D'Arcy, Maggie B, Duffy C, Lucy 'B', and Bohdi T pack the equipment in waterproof bags for the upcoming swim. The team would be carrying much more weight than normal, but Bear and the other Guardians were not concerned. These terriers were up to the challenge.... and the Guardians would be there to ease the load of anyone who might need some relief.

Bran, Hamis MacBeth, Black Jack, and Dusty T were laying out the scuba gear, sorting the apparel... wetsuits, masks, tanks, swim fins. Each piece of equipment was being double-checked prior to the long, inbound swim ahead.

Suddenly, the submarine lurched to port as it settled to the ocean floor with a thud. Bran smiled broadly. "WELL, look like our taxi has arrived at our 'get-off' spot! Let's go SWIMMING!"

Team TIGER quickly donned their scuba gear, checked their respirators, and then buckled the large, waterproof bags onto their belts. In the water, they'd just drag them along as they swam ashore.

Eddie and Bear quickly made a last circuit around the room, checking the agents' equipment. A final nod of their head told Belle that all was in readiness. She motioned for the group to follow, then led them through the hatch to the Forward Escape Trunk. Although a tight squeeze, everyone magaged to fit into the small compartment.

The Dive Officer, after a safety inspection, slammed the great metal door and spun the hatch lock to seal the chamber. Glancing through the round window in the hatch, Belle gave the Dive Officer the 'thumbs up' signal.

Immediately, water began flooding the compartment from below as it rapidly filled the escape trunk. The Guardians watched the terriers and were amazed to see not fear, but eyes gleaming with excitement.

The Escape Trunk became deathly silent as the water rapidly filled the chamber. The agents' eagerness to get underway was obvious. The Dive Officer, seeing the 'green light' indicator on the 'Flood Chamber' panel, released the external hatch lock. Immediately, the outer door of the submarine slid open, and Team TIGER swam out into the open ocean.

Quickly checking their underwater compasses, the team took their bearings and began swimming due East, toward Glanik Island. Time was crucial. They MUST complete their mission and be back at the Sharkteeth as soon as possible.

The experience of Team TIGER was obvious as they calmly swam toward shore, their legs providing powerful thrust for the inbound swim. Suddenly, they were aware of the waves breaking on the reef ahead. They were nearing shore. Angling more to the northeast, they swam through the break in the reef, and within moments were wading ashore on Glanik Island.

The agents quickly raced up the beach, into the cover of the foliage, where they deposited their scuba gear, carefully hiding it under nearby palm fronds. Unpacking the equipment from the waterproof bags, the agents quickly gathered the materials each would need for their particular target at Glanik Island.

Having to cover the greatest distance, Capt'n Eddie, Liam K, Jaimie S, Kenzie C, Webber R, Max B, and Maggie Mac left first, each agent groaning under the weight of massive amounts of explosives. They headed upland, toward Klawak, the active volcano that dominated the center of Glanik Island.

Meanwhile,  Alex B, Duncan B, Heidi D, Kramer B, and Maggie J slipped quietly through the island vegetation until they reached the edge of the B.A.D. compound. A quick glance of the area revealed guards at strategic points on all four corners of the facility, all watching the command bunker very carefully.

"Yep, they're right where we thought they'd be!" Heidi whispered. "Okay, this will work out perfectly! Don't miss!!!"

Silently, they crept as close as possible to the compound, while using the trees and shrubbery for cover. Finally in position, they carefully opened their backpacks and pulled out dozens of ORBS, sand-colored ORBS, filled with plastic explosives.

Filling their arms with the explosive balls, the team split up, each moving to a prime location with access to one of the sites targeted for detonation.

The next two minutes found the group slowly and expertly rolling the camouflaged orbs up against the targets... 3 communications facilities, 1 equipment building, and the command bunker that housed all of the essential telemetry for the project. The agents expertly deposited the balls in precise locations against the buildings, with the guards none the wiser, as the balls invisibly crossed the open area of the compound.

"That's it, double check your placements," Kramer whispered into his communicator. "Activate the signals on the ORBS before you leave your location. Let's Get OUT of here!"

Like shadows, the team withdrew, disappearing back into the thick foliage, to await the rest of Team TIGER.

Up on the north face of Klawak, Capt'n Eddie's team worked quickly. Jaimie, Webber, Max, and Maggie Mac hurriedly drilled an extensive series of deep holes into the side of the active volcano.  Capt'n Eddie, Liam, and Kenzie worked right behind them, FILLING the dozens of holes with heavy explosives. Each bore hole extended more than 100 feet into the volcano, as near as possible to the central magma chamber.

Finally reaching the base of the volcano, Capt'n Eddie pulled out the geologist's diagram that outlined JUST where each charge MUST be placed. Glancing back up the volcano's face, he nodded.

"PERFECT!" he announced. "NOW, lay the remainder of the explosives right along this fissure. When THIS last wall blows, the magma will flow right down the volcano, into this fissure. It'll be a STRAIGHT shot directly into B.A.D.'s "drain" of theirs! We'll just plug UP their drain... with millions of cubic feet of molten magma!!! NOTHING TO IT!"

Smiles lit their faces as they quickly laid the last of the charges along the one remaining blockage between the volcano and the 'drain' that B.A.D. had intended to use for their vile plot.

Within moments, the explosives had been placed. Eddie pulled out the radio sequencer and activated all charges. Seeing the lights on the miniature panel all signaling 'green', he quietly motioned the team to proceed to their extraction point.

"We're done... let's go catch a ride OUTA here!" Kenzie announced, as they retraced their steps back toward the beach.

Team TIGER silently returned to the beach, redressed in their scuba gear, and, after being ashore for less than an hour, were back in the water, headed toward the Sharkteeth. Sadie and Bear took the lead as the team followed the ocean floor back toward open water. Belle and Sammy brought up the rear, making certain that all agents were accounted for.

Swimming steadily, Team TIGER soon spotted the Sharkteeth ahead of them in the murky depths. Reaching the diving hatch, Belle's huge paw pounded three times onto the hatch cover, then turned the wheel latch and pulled the hatch open.

The agents scrambled into the diving chamber, having more room now, without the massive amounts of explosives. The Guardians entered the chamber last, closing the hatch behind them. The Dive Officer, after a quick check through the window, pressed a button. Immediately, the water level in the chamber began dropping. Water drained rapidly from the small space, until the only water in the chamber was dripping off the agents.

Team TIGER hurriedly cleared the diving chamber, as they headed quickly toward their quarters and dry clothes.

Sadie, still dripping from her swim, head directly to the Command Center. Adjusting the radio transmission frequency, she listened for the telltale 'click'... then transmitted.

"TIGER is armed.... drain is ready for clogging!"

Chapter 15


RR8 and the Royal Kilted Brigade had reached Big B.A.D.'s island headquarters, as guests of Big B.A.D. himself, aboard his private yacht. The evil mastermind had immediately hurried off to make the final arrangements for his plot to force the world to yield to his power and had left his new rocket technicians to follow at their own pace.

The agents immediately made good use of this unexpected 'free time' as they browsed the compound in the evening dusk. As the setting sun shimmered in glittering tones of gold and purple on the soft ocean waves, the agents began familiarizing themselves with the buildings' layouts, planning the deployment of the explosives.

RR8 was rather surprised to see that the B.A.D. workers had totally ignored them, allowing the agents to roam at will. Big B.A.D. must have given orders to permit them such freedom. Double R 8 watched the Royal Kilted Brigade spread out, to seemingly enjoy the sunset and admire the stainless and glass buildings of B.A.D. headquarters. Leisurely, he wandered the facility, noting the cold severity of the stainless and glass compound, as his mind raced through the many puzzle pieces that would have to fall PERFECTLY into place for this operation to succeed.

The Royal Kilted Brigade needed no watch to tell them that the time had finally arrived. The night's dark shroud surrounded the compound, wrapping the Royal Kilted's exploits in a cloak of impenetrable blackness. Concealing their identities under the anonymity of ski masks, they quickly and efficiently planted the explosives in the pre-arranged locations, then cross-connected the primer wires and tuned the remote triggers to the appropriate frequency.

Their task completed, the Royal Kilted Brigade slipped silently behind the communications center, pulled off their ski masks, then casually ambled toward the pre-arranged location near the cliffs, at the far end of the B.A.D. compound.

RR8, while awaiting final confirmation from General Cammeron and General Bo'sun, had sauntered over to the front entrance of Big B.A.D.'s glass residence. Approaching the guard at the front door, RR8 smiled broadly. "My compliments to Bigelow!!! Mr. Badley has a stunning facility here... simply STUNNING! Please tell Bigelow that I have something I'd love to show him.... ask him to meet me at the cliffs, at his earliest convenience, please!"

And with that, Double R 8 turned and casually headed to the far side of the B.A.D. compound, to await the evil mastermind. Arriving at the pre-arranged cliff-side location, Riley paused a moment and watched the moonlight shimmering across the ocean. He knew that the fate of Operation Jubilee would hinge on what happened next. He took a deep breath, then exhaled slowly. "Nothing for a stepper!" he thought, smiling in the darkness.

A soft whistle drew RR8's attention. Turning, he saw General Cammster and General Bo'sun approaching. As they drew nearer, he could tell by the smile on their faces that all systems were set and ready.

"It's a GO," Cammster said, without fanfare. "Everything's set and primed."

Bo'sun added," All circuits have been cross-sequenced. You should get a clear signal on all four channels. The keypad will show 'green' for each site as it goes 'HOT' and ready to ignite. Once all are 'online', your master control switch will detonate them all, SIMULTANEOUSLY! Slick system!!!"

"PERFECT!" Double R 8 said. He pulled his handheld master control out of his pocket. Although it resembled a cellphone, it had FOUR monitor screens with lighted buttons beneath each screen. At the bottom of the apparatus was a large toggle button. RR8 smiled broadly then announced, "Hang around. Operation Jubilee is about to reach Critical MASS!"

As if on cue, Bigelow Badley, known to the world as BIG B.A.D., strolled up the path to join the three agents who were casually looking at the device that RR8 held.

"NAH!" RR8 gushed, just as BIG B.A.D. joined the group. "This cellphone is only a prototype. Friend of mine designed it and wanted me to TEST it for 'im!! LOOK at THIS!"

With that, RR8 pushed a button and leaned toward Cammster and Bo'sun, who dutifully appeared enthralled and eager to hear more. Immediately, one of the monitor screens lit up, revealing a floodlit image of the B.A.D. installation at Breen Mountain.

Forcing his way into the techno-talking group, BIG B.A.D. demanded, "HOW did you find THAT location???"

Surprised, RR8 calmly replied, "WHAT? Ohhhhhhh, THIS?? Your Communications foreman gave me the information! He thought this was the GREATEST little piece of equipment he'd ever SEEN! LOOK what ELSE this can do!" RR8 continued, as he waved the device in BIG's face, before yanking it back to peer eagerly at it himself.

Cammster crooned, "Okay, I've got to have one! Where can I get one?"

"NOPE!" RR8 replied. "It's not on the market yet! And even if it WERE, ya wouldn't be able to afford it. NO ONE would! It requires too much power, and no one has the amount needed to run the support system for it!"

Turning back to BIG B.A.D., who was becoming more and more intrigued by the moment, RR8 continued. "Now, let me show you what this little gem can REALLY DO! Come on, Bigelow, give me another location.... somewhere FAR away... somewhere that you KNOW no one has seen. Bet there's no place that could evade my live screen phone!!!"

"Welllllll, uhhhhhhhhh, I don't think......." Bigelow Badley shook his head. He just couldn't understand how this Rambunctious guy could twist his mind and muddle his thinking.

"Ohhhhhhh, come on, Bigelow! PLAY along with us!" RR8 encouraged.

"Uhhhhhhh, well, okay... how about Glanik Island, GPS 352.43.89?" BIG B.A.D. suggested.

RR8 made quite a show of putting in data, punching a lot of buttons, and finally looked up and announced, "GOT IT, Bigelow!!! That was TOO easy!! LOOK HERE!"

And with that, Double R 8 waved the handheld device in the evil mastermind's face. Badley was shocked to see that now the device showed Breen Mountain AND Glanik Island!

"I'll even make it EASIER on ya," RR8 joked. "Let's put THIS place on it!" After another performance of inputting data, RR8 again showed the now amazed Bigelow Badley.

"Give me ONE more, Bigelow... then I'll show you what this can REALLY DO!!"

"Sutton Glen!" BIG B.A.D. said, his eyes betraying his desire to own the one-of-a-kind device.

Rambunctious made another grand gesture, pushing buttons, inputting data... he even threw in a sigh or two for good measure... then finally announced, "GOT IT! Here ya go, Bigelow!!! NOW, look what this little beauty will do!! Notice all those green lights beneath each screen?? Well, you're now in COMMUNICATION with each site!! You want to talk to ONE?? ALL?? It's totally DO-able with this little gem!! YESSIR!!! Ya want a conference call?? Nothing to it!!! HERE, YOU TRY!!! I think these are YOUR business sites, aren't they?? Well, then... YOU can talk to them!!! Just push that toggle button on the bottom!! HERE ya go.... the latest technology, your own hands!"

Avarice and greed took control of BIG B.A.D. as he eagerly reached out for the coveted device. Cradling it in his hands, he knew he'd never relinquish it... once his, ALWAYS his. He smiled wickedly, then glanced at Rambunctious, Cammster, and Bo'sun, who were watching him with expressionless eyes.

"MINE!!! ALLLLLL MINE!!!" BIG B.A.D. cackled gleefully, as he waved the device overhead. Then, pulling it down, he gazed intently at the tiny screens on the device, showing each of his sites, sites that were about to change the WORLD! He could conference with them ALL.... from ANYWHERE!!! His hand tightened around the device, then with a feral gleam in his eye, he looked at the toggle button, and PRESSED.

The screens immediately lit up..... each turning into crimson fire. The very ground beneath his feet trembled, as the night sky was illuminated by the power of the explosions.


Chapter 16

Jubilation for Operation Jubilee

The night sky glowed brightly as the buildings exploded in a fiery inferno. RR8, Cammster, and Bo'sun smiled proudly as they watched the flames rise higher and higher.

"OOPS!" RR8 replied calmly, as he stepped over and quietly took the detonation device from BIG B.A.D.'s clenched hands. "WELLLLL, I'll certainly have to tell my friend about THIS little glitch! WhatEVER could have gone WRONG?!?!?! WELL, never you mind... I'm sure it was nothing critical!"

Bigelow Badley was numb with shock. His mind refused to wrap itself around the events of the last few moments! His life's WORK had just gone up in flames... a goal he'd worked toward for years... destroyed in one MOMENT, destroyed by his own HAND! HIS OWN HAND!!! It just could not BEEEEE!

He wrung his hands, but that did not erase the events he'd just witnessed. He beat his fists on his thighs, but the pain in his head did not ease. His eyes glazed over as they stared, unblinking, at the flames engulfing his B.A.D. Headquarters... and in his mind's eye, he still saw the images on the small monitors, as each of his other sites evaporated in a blaze of fiery retribution. Had he erred?? Had his grand plans been futile?? Had he been WRONG??

Nooooooooo, not wrong! NEVER THAT!!! His eyes grew wide, his gaze frozen on the orange glow that filled the sky. "Nooo, not wrong... I was NEVER wrong.... too much orange... I didn't DO that! YES I did... but not me... never ME! Why did I... HOW did I... not me!! NEVER ME!!!"

Bigelow Badley's fragile grasp on reality had been irreparably torn apart. He blithered helplessly as he watched his world crumble in front of him. Then, dropping to the ground in a heap, he sobbed uncontrollably into his big, beefy hands, great heaving sobs.

RR8 stood nearby, watching the evil mastermind descend into a mindless world without a reality, without understanding. Turning, Riley nodded to General Cammster, who immediately contacted the rest of the Royal Highland Brigade.

"Close it up," Cammster ordered. "Call in the authorities. They'll mop up this operation, and take the B.A.D. organization into custody. We'll meet you back at the pier in ten minutes. Mop it up and get OUT!"

RR8 nodded to the two agents, and together they helped a totally unresponsive BIG B.A.D. to his feet, then guided him back toward the center of the compound. The authorities, having been notified by Jubilee of the downfall of the evil corporation, were onsite mere moments after the explosions. As they rejoined the rest of the Royal Kilted Brigade, they handed BIG B.A.D. over to the armed assault forces of the local authorities.

RR8, quickly reassured himself as to BIG B.A.D.'s fate, nodding approvingly as the Captain proclaimed Bigelow Badley to be criminally insane and would spend the remainder of his life in tight seclusion, under a 24 hour guard.

Double R 8 shook the Captain's hand, then thanked him. "We'll leave it with you then," he said. "We were never here.... YOUR group made a DARING assault!!! WELL DONE, Captain!"

The Captain smiled knowing....RR8 nodded, then moved quickly toward the pier and the waiting Kilted Brigade.

"We taking B.A.D.'s yacht??" asked Bo'sun, as they all congregated at the end of the pier.

"NAH, not gonna steal his yacht!" Riley answered. "We'll take our OWN transportation."

Reaching to his embedded earpiece, RR8 quickly tapped twice. Immediately, Jubilee's voice was heard. "Well done, Riley!! Imagine you're awaiting your ride! The Sharkteeth should be surfacing at the end of the pier within the next 90 seconds! OHHHHHHHHH, and all other B.A.D. sites have been neutralized and all enemy agents are now in custody. GOOD JOB!!!"

"Thanks, Jubilee!!! Tell Captain Scotty and Captain Digger to meet us in Saint-Tropez! We're having a PARTY TONIGHT!!! Pass the word...EVERYONE'S INVITED! See ya THERE! We're gonna get ROWDY.... RR8 out!"

"Here's our RIDE!" Cammster exclaimed, as the S.S. Sharkteeth broke the surface just offshore, then eased in against the pier. The Royal Kilted Brigade quickly boarded the submarine, followed closely by Double R 8, who turned to survey the end results of Operation Jubilee one last time!! The compound lay in ruins, the buildings now reduced to smoldering rubble.

Nodding his head, RR8 smiled. "ORB doesn't mess around!!" he muttered under his breath as he descended the ladder into the sub, closing the hatch behind him.

The ORB agents traveled through the night, and converged on Saint-Tropez just after sunrise the following morning. The agents spent the day playing tourist on the French Riviera, gambling, skiing, relaxing on the beach, and letting their fur down. As the sun set on their 'day off', the agents slipped into their evening finery and descended on the finest restaurant on the Riviera, where they dined on richly exotic dishes, and decadently sweet desserts.

As the clock struck midnight, the ORB agents located the busiest nightclub in Saint-Tropez and, literally, danced the night away... celebrating the successful completion of another ORB mission. The Guardian Brigade was in full attendance, standing guard over the agents who, now off duty, planned to really cut loose on the French Riviera.

The ORB agents partied, danced, and celebrated until sunrise, when the Guardian Brigade began to escort them toward the ScotCorde and home. As the ScotCorde rose into the air, headed back to ORB headquarters, the Guardian Brigade began exchanging tales of the past 48 hours.

"Who'd ever expect these Terriers to lead such dual lives... Terriers by day, and international ORB agents by night! They do, truly, life on the EDGE!" Jubilee said.

Jake laughed. "And they certainly took care of OPERATION JUBILEE! Hmmmmmmmm, wonder what their NEXT assignment will be?"

"OHHHHHHHHH, don't even THINK IT!" Haley gasped. "We're still getting over THIS EXPLOSION!"

And........ as the BASH guests returned to their every-day lives, the Guardians wondered... if the Mams and Dads even KNEW how their kids spent their working hours!

ORB AGENTS!! Who'd have EVER thought!?!?!

SOOOOOOOOOO, until the next call goes out for ORB agents, to save the world, to keep mankind from harm....... we bid you farewell... MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!


This ORIGINAL story has been created and written by Carol Johnson.
ORIGINAL illustrations are done by Karen Donnelly.
They are NOT to be reproduced in ANY way ....PERIOD!!!!

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