Jail Birds

The man sat back with a satisfied grunt. He put his arms behind his head and gazed, satisfied, at the screen. The door opened behind him, and he quickly hid what he'd been working on. He spun around with a fake smile until he saw who it was, then he nodded his hello, and turned back to the screen, bringing up the image again.

"You finished them?" the person who entered asked.

"You bet. I better get my money soon, because they," he pointed to the subjects of the photo image. "Aren't going to like this. And their friends aren't going to let them rot in jail either."

"I keep telling you, there's no way they're going to know it was us! Besides, Klegghorn's always had it in for them, he'll be too happy to care about whether his 'evidence' is real or not."

"I just think…"

"What is it, Abe? You chicken?" He looked at the picture, and laughed. "Or duck maybe?"


Abe sighed as the hockey player pushed the envelope containing the three photos and the accompanied note into the post-box.

"This is foolproof!" the hockey player enthused. "When the cops see George bribing Wildwing and Jadestar and them taking the bribe, the Ducks will be spilt up, I'll be captain of the Minnesota Muskrats and you'll be $25 000 richer."

"Make something foolproof, and somebody will make a better fool." mumbled Abe.

"For crying out loud Abe, we did it! And we aren't going to get caught," Abe suddenly found himself looking into a very threatening face. "Unless someone blabs."

Abe gulped. "Max, I wouldn't dream of it."

"Good. I'll mail you the money when I get it." Max suddenly smiled. "I'll see you later. I have a hockey game to play."


Later at the Pond the ducks were warming up for their game with the Minnesota Muskrats. Duke manoeuvred the pucks into a line in front of the goal. Nosedive skidded to a stop beside him and the team began to warm up by shooting pucks at the goal.

"How long till the game starts Duke?" asked Jadestar.

"About…oh…40 seconds" he answered looking up at the jumbo-tron.

"Well if that's all…" She did one last triple kale before she heard the buzzard sound.

"Okay! Let's get this started!" Jadestar cringed as the unmistakable voice of her twin brother shot through the rink.

"Nosedive…could you be *any louder*!?!" She skated off the ice and watched the game from the bench. It was an intense first period, the Minnesota Muskrats were turning out to be tougher than they had thought. They somehow kept getting the puck past them.


The buzzard sounded indicating the end of the first period.

"The Ducks and The Minnesota Muskrats are *tied* at a 3 all game! The second period will start in 10 minutes, the anticipation is *killing* me!" The ducks trudged into the locker room and sat down on the bench as the announcer gave the first period score.

Mallory threw her stick in the corner of the room, splitting it in two. "Ugh! I *can't believe* this!"

"Mallory calm down!" Wildwing was annoyed himself but throwing things around the room *wasn't* going to solve anything.

"Calm down? *Calm down*? We're tied and you…you, ah!" she threw her hands up in exasperation. Duke walked over to her and put his hands on her shoulders. She tensed up but he didn't let go.

"I've got to go perform. I'll talk with you guys later." murmured Jadestar as she walked out to the ice. She didn't want to bring much attention to herself with Mallory on the warpath.

Nosedive decided to break the silence. "So…what are we going to do? I mean those muskrats are *somehow* getting the puck past our defence…I'd like to know *how*?"

"Perhaps they have learned the value of playing as a team." said Grin.

"Yeah, right! Don't forget what happened *last* time! They got in a fight with their *own* team members!"

"Though I hate to say it, Nosedive's right" said Mallory after she had calmed down.

"Whoa, whoa, go back, I was *right*?"

"Yes," she said tonelessly. "*Anyway* I'd like to know what they're doing, because it's *killing* us!"

"We just need to find a way to beat their new play" Duke said with determination in his voice.

Jadestar walked back in just as the buzzard sounded indicating the beginning of the second period.


It was the end of the game. The ducks were *still* tied with the Minnesota Muskrats. Jadestar listened to the announcer, she was on the edge of her seat.

"Duke deflects the shot! But the Muskrats take it back! Oh! Nosedive's checked in the boards! That's gotta hurt! The Muskrat Captain George Clospick is aiming to score. He shoots… he scores! The ducks have gotta score!" The buzzard sounded for the end of the game. The Ducks *lost*? "The ducks loose, Captain George Clospick scored at the last second breaking to tie game. What a loss for the ducks…"


They ducks entered the locker room not at *all* happy.

"I can't *believe* we lost! How could we have lost!" Mallory shouted at the top of her lungs.

To make things worse Phil walked in. "Boobies what happened?"

"We lost Phil. Duh!" Nosedive replied.

"How could you have lost!?! All of the money! What are we going to do?"

"Phil, it was one game."

"Nosedive! It starts out as *one* then it's two, then three!"

Suddenly there was a tap at the door.

"Saved by the knock" muttered Tanya

Phil walked over to the door and slightly opened it, expecting some reporters. He was shocked to see Klegghorn.

"Phil? I need to talk to you in private for a moment."

"Listen Klegghorn if it's about those parking ticket's…"

"No! Forget about the stupid parking tickets! Just step into the hall."

Phil strolled out into the hall with Klegghorn.

"What was that about?" Jadestar inquired

"I'm not sure but it can't be good" Wildwing said.

Phil suddenly walked back in looking more nervous than he had before. "Ah…Boobies, we have a little problem…" he was about to say more when Klegghorn burst in with two other cops.

"Wildwing Flashblade? Jadestar Flashblade?"

"Yes?" the goalie replied, obviously confused.

"You're both under arrest for taking illegal bribes from Gorge Clospick, Captain of the Minnesota Muskrats."

"What?" Jadestar stared. "What did you say? We didn’t take any bribes!"

"Tell it to the judge girly." Klegghorn gloated as he snapped the cuffs on Wildwing. "We've got *air tight* proof that you did it!"

Tanya walked up to Klegghorn, a little unsure of what to say. "Uh…what proof exactly?"

Klegghorn turned around and beamed a gloating smile at the rest of the team. He opened his coat and tossed them a envelope. "*This* came in our mail today. It's proof that these two have been taking illegal bribes."

Tanya opened the envelope and took out three pictures, glancing at each of them, her eyes getting wider and wider. Jadestar and Wildwing looked at each other, both wondering what they were.

Mallory walked over and took the pictures from Tanya, who was shocked at what she'd seen. Mallory eyed each of the pictures before slapping them on one of the benches in frustration.

"HOW *COULD* YOU!!!" she screamed at the top of her lungs. Jadestar and Wildwing exchanged confused looks.

"What are you talking about Mallory? We didn't do it!" Jadestar said with a bit of fear in her voice. She'd *never* seen Mallory this angry, she wasn't sure what she'd do.


"Mallory!!" Wildwing yelled, his temper getting a hold of him. "We don't know *what* you're talking about!!!"

"Oh no?! Then explain this!!" she yelled picking up the pictures and slapping them down in front of them. There were three pictures that landed in front of them. One of George bribing Jadestar, Jadestar taking the money, and then Jadestar giving it to Wildwing.

"That's *not* us!" Wildwing shouted.

"Then who *is* it? It makes sense, that's why we lost. George Clospick *did* make the winning goal Wildwing, you must have *let* him score!"

"I didn't *let* him score Mallory! I misjudged where the puck was headed. It happens!" he clenched his teeth, he was furious with her for even *thinking* that they'd do something like this, especially his younger sister. She'd never in a million years do something like this, and he wasn't about to stand around while they accused her of it!

"Then who was it?" Wildwing and Jadestar both turned around to face the owner of the voice.

"Grin! You think we did this!?!" Jadestar said, her heart beginning to sink.

"It *would* explain why we lost."

"I can't believe either of you!" Nosedive cried to Mallory and Grin. "They'd *never, ever* do this! Not in a million years!"

"You're just protecting them because they're your brother and sister!" Mallory yelled at him.

"You are in denial, trying to convince yourself that that are innocent." Grin stated calmly.

"We didn't *do* it! You've got to believe us!" Jadestar yelled pleadingly.

"Get outta here." Klegghorn said, leading them out of the room.

When they'd left the others were flabbergasted.

"I can't believe they did this…" Tanya said, not sure who to believe: Mallory and Grin or Jadestar and Wildwing.

"They didn't do it!" Nosedive yelled.

"Yeah right" Mallory muttered.

"I'm with Nosedive I don't think they did it." Duke said looking down at the floor in concentration.

"WHAT?!?" Mallory screamed "How can you *think* that!"

"Didn't you see Jadestar, she was almost *crying* when we didn't believe them…she *couldn't* have done that."

"She was just trying to make us feel pity for her! She and Wildwing took a bribe from George Clospick and now they're paying for it!"

"We don't know for sure that…"

"What 'for sure'? Look at the evidence! The pictures, us loosing the game, George Clospick scoring the final goal! Wildwing *let* him score, that's why we were at a tie game!"

"I'm not giving up hope on them." Duke said quietly. "I know what it takes to do something like this, and they don't have it in them."

Grin stared him down. "Maybe you're just sticking up for them because they broke the law."

Mallory snorted, staring at a spot in the wall just above Duke's head. "Birds of a feather…" She let the insult hang.

Nosedive came and stood next to Duke, and he narrowed his eyes at Grin, who was standing in front of him, next to Mallory. "They didn't do it." he growled.

Tanya watched helplessly as the tension mounted. She hoped against hope that the argument didn't evolve into violence. With Mallory's temper and Grin's strength on one side, and Duke's skill coupled with Nosedive's lack of thought, the result of a conflict would probably be four ducks in the Medilab.

"How can you be so sure?" Mallory stood straight, her temper controlled…for now.

"Come on, I've been with them ever since I was born! You figure out a person in 16 years! Besides, Star would *never* do anything so important without telling me!"

"You have feelings, we have hard proof." Mallory waved the photos under Nosedive's beak. Nosedive made a fake attempt to bite her, and she withdrew her hand swiftly.

"Blood runs thicker than water, Mallory." Nosedive hissed.

"Look, what motive does Jadestar have? I mean, she doesn't even play hockey!" Duke folded his arms.

"So Wildwing conned her into it! Her motive was helping her older brother!" Mallory screeched.

"Winning became too important to Wildwing, and he enlisted the person who was most likely to obey orders." Grin said, still calm.

The two sides started simply staring. Tanya frowned. She'd known Wildwing for two years…He was a good leader, and always thought for the long run, he wouldn't do this! He didn't even need the money for a start! And Jadestar had the mind of a child anyway, being this sneaky was practically impossible for her.

Tanya made her choice, and stood next to Duke. Mallory's eyes were hard and accusing, and Tanya chose to look away.

"Look, it's no use arguing." the female blond told them. "Why don't we get out of our hockey gear, and go down to the police station? Whether they're guilty or not, we have to find out what's going on."

Duke turned around and started to get his padding off. "Fine. Battle gear sounds like something appropriate to wear."

They all opened their lockers to get rid of their gear except Nosedive. He stood in the middle of the room and watched them silently. He suddenly pulled off his helmet, and threw it with a much force as he could muster against the wall, putting a small dent in it. He pointed his finger at Mallory. "They didn't do it." he said with barely restrained anger, and he strode out of the room, still in the rest of his gear.


Nosedive sat in the driver's seat of the Migrator.

"Set torque to maximum throttle!" he made his hand say, is if it were a puppet. He poked the 'Wildwing-hand' over the top his chair, to let it look at the others, his eyes still on the road. He brought the hand back down so he was looking at it. "That's a roger!" he told it. The hand then turned towards Duke. "Turbines to speed." it told the thief.

"Shut up Nosedive."

"Duke!" Nosedive had a sense of outrage in his voice. Duke sighed.

"Fine, fine, turbines to full power. There, you happy?"

Nosedive moved the hand so it was looking out the windscreen, himself driving with one hand. "I'll scan for Saurian activity!" the hand proclaimed. The hand hovered around, darting from one side of the windscreen to the other.

Grin shook his head slowly.

"Shouldn't you be more depressed?" Mallory grumbled at Nosedive.

"I've decided that I'm gonna keep my spirits up. So sue me."

"I just might one of these days, so don't tempt me."

"Ooh! I'm *scared*" he retorted in a sarcastic voice.

"Cut it out you two!" Tanya yelled, she wasn't in the mood to have them at each other's throats all the way to the police station. The rest of the trip was filled with complete silence.


They arrived at the police station around a half-hour later. They all walked down the ramp from the Migrator and entered the station. The second they were through the door Klegghorn ran to meet them.

"What are you doing here?!" he yelled at them, causing a few people to look up from what they were doing.

"We're *here* to see Jadestar and Wildwing, we need to talk to them." Duke said plainly.

"I don't think so! Why should I let you see them?!" he retorted, challenging them with his eyes to say anything.

"Because we have the *right* to see them!" Duke snapped back.

Klegghorn growled under his breath "Fine." He snorted "You can see them." He began to lead the down to the back of the police station. Klegghorn suddenly stopped and turned around to face them.

"They're being held in different cells…"

"Why?" Nosedive interrupted.

"Because we've got *male* and *female* holding cells!" he growled.

Duke knew that Klegghorn was lying. There were only male and female *prisons* not jail cells. He was just keeping them separated so they couldn't prove that they were innocent. He didn't care if they were innocent or not, he just wanted to keep them in jail. Typical law enforcement…

Klegghorn lead them down a hall way and abruptly stopped in front of one of the cells. "This is where Jadestar's being held, you've got five minutes."

"What about Wing?" Nosedive asked

"He's down in the west wing, you wanna talk to him follow me." Klegghorn started walking down another hallway.

"Hey! Why can't we, uh, speak to both of them?" Tanya asked quickly.

"You can if you hurry." Tanya looked at Duke quickly for an answer. He just pointed to Klegghorn and Tanya followed him. Mallory shrugged, and taking Grin's arm ran down the hall to catch up with Tanya and Klegghorn.

Nosedive turned around to face the cell which *supposedly* held his sister. "Hey, Star? Jadestar?" he called in a quiet voice.

"Yeah?" a female voice called.

"Hey, Jade! It's me, Nosedive."

With the dime light that they had they could make out Jadestar's form as she walked over to the bars, clasping them in her hands. Nosedive walked over to her and put his hands on top of hers. She somewhat smiled at this. Duke walked up beside Nosedive.

"How ya holding up kid?"

"Well, okay considering I'm in *jail*!"

"Hey, don't worry we'll get you out!" Nosedive said reassuringly.

"Duke, you've got to believe us! We *didn't* do it!"

"Hey kid, it's okay. I believe you, both of you."

Jadestar momentarily smiled but she wiped it off her face and stepped back from the bars of the cell, sitting on the bed. "But the others don't."

Nosedive shot a glance at Duke, who just ignored him.

"Listen, Dive, Tanya, and I all believe that you two are innocent. You had no motive to do it! We *don't* need the money…"

"And we know you to well!" Nosedive interrupted.

"Don't worry we'll get you outta here. With or without the other's help." He gave her a reassuring smile.

She couldn't help but smile back " I know Duke, I'm just…scared."

"Hey, don't worry, you're a tough kid, you'll be fine." The mood was shattered when Klegghorn burst back down the hall.

"Okay, your five minutes are up. Get out!" Nosedive waved bye-bye to Jadestar then he and Duke walked back up the hall. When they got back up stairs they were met with Mallory and Grin.

"Where's Tanya?" Duke asked looking around. Just then Tanya came walking up to them. "Oh, never mind. Let's get back to the Pond" The team pilled back into the Migrator and speed back down the road to the Pond.


When they got there, they went in separate rooms: Tanya, Nosedive, and Duke in one, Mallory and Grin in another.

Tanya sat down on the coach, the three of them had choose that Rec Room to talk in. "So Tanya, How's Wing?" Nosedive asked, he felt guilty, he’d wanted to see both of them. But he figured that Wildwing was taking this better than Jadestar.

"Well, he's fine and all. When I got there, we talked like nothing had changed. Then Mallory and Grin came up. Well…Mallory, *exploded* she was ranting and raving at Wildwing like there was no tomorrow. One of the other policemen came down because of the commotion and made her leave. Grin just followed her. I talked with him for awhile. He's fine, he taking it well, better than what you'd described of Jadestar anyway. He's worried about everyone *else* though."

"What else is new?" Nosedive said tonelessly looking at the floor.

"Well, he wants to know how Jadestar is and all, I think he's just worried about her. I mean we've been in jail before. When Dragaunus had those robots pose as us. But Grin and you, Nosedive, got us out."

"I know, but I'm *more* worried about Jadestar. I mean the last time *she* was in a cell was when we were slaves on Puckworld, she was shot and I'm not sure how long she'll be able to stand staying in there…" Nosedive let his thought trail off. He didn't want to say any more.

"The sooner we clear this up, the better." Duke muttered. "This is splitting the team. So, thinking caps on everyone! Any ideas?"

"They never found any money on Wildwing or Jadestar," Nosedive pointed out. "That might help them. Though Klegg’ll just say that they hid it."

"The only proof they have is the photos." Tanya said. "If we can prove them fake, the whole case against them falls apart."

"The police don’t even know where they came from." Duke frowned. "They could have come from anywhere!"

"Hey!" Nosedive sat up straight. "What about George Clospick! He must be in jail too!"

"So maybe someone wasn’t just out to get us." Tanya pondered.

"This gets better and better." Duke groaned. "OK, who’s up for another trip to the cop shop?"


Duke stood awkwardly outside the kitchen door. He hesitantly knocked, and Mallory opened the door.

"Yes?" she asked, business like.

"Look, sweetheart, I don’t want to fight with you. Whether our leader’s a crook or not, we all need to work together. We’re pulling ourselves down." Duke looked at her with hopeful eyes.

Mallory considered his words. She didn’t want to argue either, and, after all, Grin was not the best person to have a conversation with. "OK. I guess we need Wildwing and Jadestar back anyway." She looked him over. "Does that glint in your eye mean you have a plan?"

Duke grinned, and put his arm around her, walking her down the hallway, gesturing for Grin to follow with the other arm. "You could say that. But we need the whole team for it to work."


"Now Mallory, keep it cool this time. We need you with us, not in jail with the others for disturbing the peace." Duke walked backwards, pointing his finger at her as he made his way to the front desk.

The Ducks stood together in the foyer of the police station, much less tension than the day before.

Duke dinged the little bell at the front desk. "Hey, we’re looking for George Clospick. Can we see him?"

The officer pondered. "Well, Klegghorn’s decided that no more visitors to Clospick will be let through. It’s the same with your team mates."

Duke opened his good eye wider. "What on Puckworld… Why?"

The officer shrugged, and Duke growled quietly on his way back over to the other ducks. "Klegghorn’s barred visitors from Wildwing, Jadestar *and* Clospick."

"What?!" Mallory was enraged. "Not for long." She pushed Duke aside and marched up to the officer. She suddenly turned on the charm in a way that even Duke was proud of. She walked back to the others, a self satisfied smile on her beak. "Just sign something for his kids and you can see any of them. Klegghorn’s not around." she grinned.

The ducks clapped appreciatively. Duke slipped his arm around her waist as the walked behind the other three on their way to the waiting pens and paper. "Nice going, sweetheart."

She almost blushed. "Well, ask politely and you can have anything."

Duke grinned as he thought of all the things he could have asked her just then. Not here, where’s your style L’Orange? Of course, he pondered It’s not often that you get a chance like that. But she’d moved on to sign, and Duke shrugged.


"OK, Mal, you’re with me. Tanya and Grin, you go check Jade. Dive, go see Wing. Everyone follow?"

Nosedive saluted. "Yes sir!" He quickly dodged the playful slap that came his way.


Jadestar was sitting on the floor, slumped in a corner, head hung low. Tanya gasped. "Jadestar! Are you OK?"

"Yeah," she muttered. "But I want out. This place brings back too many memories."

"Sorry. We’re doing our best." Tanya said sympathetically.

"I know. I’m just not a very patient duck."

"You’re going to have to stay here overnight." Grin said.

"Oh, hi Grin." Jadestar mumbled in a less than enthusiastic voice. "Guess you think it’s justice that I’m sitting here." she said bitterly.

"I do not gloat." Grin scowled.

"You wish."

Grin was about to reply to that with one of his cryptic remarks which Jadestar had always hated when Tanya broke in. "Guys, maybe you should, like, calm down. Jade, Grin’s helping us get you and Wildwing out of here. And Grin, you *did* accuse her of something very serious which she continually denies. You two may not get on very well, but Jade doesn’t lie. And Grin is fair." She looked from one to the other.

Jadestar sighed from her corner. "OK, sorry Grin. I’m just kinda down right now."

"I am sorry too, for retaliating with anger."

"You didn’t actually do anything you know."

"Apologising is good for the soul."

"*That* I understand. Anyway, what are you guys doing? Do you have a plan or somethin’?"

Tanya looked around. "Yeah, we’re asking George Clospick some questions. Well, Duke and Mallory should be right now. Nosedive’s talking to Wildwing."


"Hey. Hey there." Duke knocked on the wall near Clospick’s cell.

Clospick turned his head, but seeing who it was, turned back to his inspection of the wall opposite him. "I don’t want to talk to any ducks."

"Why? What did we do to you?" Mallory was confused for a second.

"You guys framed me!" Clospick exploded, suddenly flinging himself to the bars. He grabbed the back of Mallory’s head, and tried to slam it into the iron. Duke pulled her back in time, slapping away the offending hand simultaneously.

"Watch it. Touch her and die." Duke growled. "We need to talk to you. We know you’re innocent."

Mallory glowered at him. "Though I’m beginning to wish otherwise." she muttered.

Clospick ignored her. "Why’d you guys get me in here anyway? Sore losers?" he sneered.

"*No*. Our captain and his little sister are in here too, so don’t think it’s us. We’re trying to get all three of you out. So tell us, who would have wanted you in here?" Duke folded his arms.

"You freaking ducks."

Duke put a hand to his head. "Other than us." he said patiently.

Clospick seemed to seriously consider the question. "A lot of people."

"OK, we’ll narrow it down. Who do you know who’d like to see you and Wildwing in jail?"

Clospick thought. "Max Mogel isn’t exactly a duck fan. And he wants my position as captain of the team. He was pretty insistent, in both cases. Of course," he sighed. "Max is only one of many…"

"He’ll do for now." Duke grabbed Mallory’s hand and started off. She pulled her hand back, but followed.

"Hey!" Clospick called out behind them. "This better not be you! I beat you fair and square!"

I guess there’s a first for everything, Mallory thought.


"Wing? Yo, it’s me." Nosedive tapped on the bars of his cell. Wildwing looked up, and came over.

"Hi. How’s Jade?"

"I dunno about now, but before she was OK. Don’t worry about her. We came to ask Clospick a few questions."

Wildwing frowned. "Klegghorn came in here and told me there’d be no more visitors."

Nosedive grinned. "Since when do we listen to Klegghorn? We’re inter-dimensional warriors, he’s a mouldy old guy."


"What? Hey, Klegghorn stuck you in here, don’t defend him!"

Wildwing changed the subject. "Do you think Clospick will cooperate?"

"I have no idea. Oh, you don’t have to worry about Mallory coming in her screaming again. Duke’s cooled everyone off."

"He’s in charge?"

"You bet. No one lets me do anything." Nosedive gave a pout. Wildwing laughed at his look.

"Tell him the Mask is where it always is."

"Care to tell me where ‘always’ is?"


"To coin a certain sister, ‘meanypuggle’."

Before Wildwing could answer, Duke and Mallory came running through. "We got a lead!" Duke called to Dive as he ran past. "We’re going to get Tanya and Grin. Meet you outside."

"Yeah, whatever." Nosedive turned back to Wildwing. "Looks like we’re going. See you later, maybe even with a set of cell keys!"

"I’ll see the keys, but I don’t know about you." Wildwing teased as Nosedive raced off.


When Nosedive reached the Migrator the other ducks were all huddled talking.

"Is she going too…" Mallory was saying, but seeing Nosedive, stopped and moved to her seat.

"What’s up? She who?"

"Don’t worry." Duke pushed him into the drivers seat. "The Pond."

"How about a please?"

"Nosedive Flashblade, if we aren’t in the Pond in 5 minutes then I’ll…"

Nosedive hurriedly cut in. "Close enough. Buckle up!"


Duke looked at his team in the Ready Room. "First things first. Can we just have a head count of those who think Wing and the kiddo are innocent?" He raised his hand. The others all raised their hands except Grin. Grin studied the floor hard and thought, finally raising his hand.

"Together we stand, divided we fall." he said.

"Good." Duke rubbed his hands together. "OK, let’s go!"


Wildwing paced, worried. If only they hadn’t taken his com! He stared up at the bleak walls, depression beginning to sink in. He was no stranger to four walls and no sun, but it had been awhile.

I’m out of practice at being a prisoner.

He sat on the bed and listlessly picked at the wall, pretending to dig his way out with his fingernails.

Oh yeah, I can see that escape plan working.

The duck sighed, and lay down.


Jadestar shivered uncontrollably, wishing she was anywhere, anywhere but this place. There was more space in the camps on Puckworld. she thought almost wistfully. What am I thinking? Even if I have to stay here forever, it was still worth coming to Earth. She’d rolled those words over and over in her mind, but during the last few hours, the conviction behind them was fading.

It was the memories. Memories of freezing nights, empty stomachs, sore backs, and death. The intimidation of the Saurians and their Drones that she’d seen and endured reflected from the eyes of some of the officers here, or so it seemed to her.

"Bars make you see things differently." she murmured.

But she wasn’t going to be here forever, surely? The guys, they were going to get her and Wing out. Of course they would! That was the kind of things they did.

She closed her eyes and wished, not for the first time, that she was more like them.


"This the place?" Duke asked Tanya quietly.

"It’s the address Drake One gave." she snuffled.

"Well, who wants to come in with me?" Duke asked. Most of the ducks stared back it him.

"You can’t break in! That’s against the law!" Mallory exclaimed, ignoring everyone’s protests against the noise.

"So’s unjust imprisonment. Besides," he threw a confident grin at them. "You’re with me. No one gets caught when they’re with me." He winked, and grabbed Nosedive’s arm. "Come on, you need to be kept on your toes. Make sure no one sees your profile. If they don’t see that we’re ducks, than they’ll never know who it was." He slunk around the side of the house, and Nosedive followed with a shrug to the others.


"So...Duke, man, why are we here?" Nosedive whispered to him.

"While you where talking with Wildwing, Clospick gave us the name of one of his players names." Duke murmured, not taking his eyes off the building.

"So...again....why are we here?"

Duke turned around to face the younger duck, he whispered in a low voice. "Because this is the place that he said they went too. If we're lucky there'll be some evidence to prove Wing and Jade's innocence." Nosedive nodded and the two ducks crept up to the side of the building. Duke jumped up to one of the windows and peered in. Good, no one’s here. Duke made a small motion with his hand and signalled Nosedive to go inside.

They pushed the window open, and slipped inside.


Mallory folded her arms crossly around the corner. "I can’t believe I’m just sitting here while they break and enter!"

Tanya and Grin glanced at each other, and decided to ignore the red head’s complaints.

She stormed ahead regardless. "I mean, if Klegghorn finds out we’ll *all* be in jail! That’s not going to help anything!"

"Mallory?" Grin said suddenly. She looked up. "Quiet." he told her firmly. Mallory, looking non-plussed, actually did so.


Duke peered around the corner, peering down the hall carefully before signalling Nosedive to follow him. They crept down the empty corridor together, silently.

When they reached the end, Duke opened the door softly. Seeing no one there, he went in, with Nosedive on his heels. The room held a computer, a printer, and a lot of mess.

"Turn the computer on and run a file search using 'wing' or 'jade' as a key word." Duke ordered Nosedive as he started leafing through papers.

"Okaly doakly." Nosedive did so, and was surprised at the number of files that came up. "Whoa, there's a lot of picture files..." He clicked 'view' for the top one, and stared as a picture a little like the one of Jadestar giving Wildwing the money came up, BUT with a big difference-it had no background. He nudged Duke, and continued viewing the rest of the pictures. The 'photos' gradually got more and more complete, until the last three files.

"Whoa boy, we hit the mother load!" Duke hissed. "You got a disc? We gotta copy this stuff!"

Nosedive flicked open his com. "Tanya, we need a disc pronto!"

She looked surprised, but nodded. "I'll come up..."

"No time." He moved to the back window. "Can you see me?" She nodded again.

"Great. Toss it up."

Tanya moved over, and threw it up carefully. He caught it and ducked back inside, jamming it in the computer.

Nosedive waved a bunch of paper at him. "Letters from Max Mogel to an Abe Lincon. Discussing us and Georgey boy."

The computer finished copying the files, and Nosedive ejected the disk. "What say we just post this all to Klegghorn too? Keeping copies, of course..."

Duke grinned. "But of course..."


Max wasn't sure if Abe would be there, but he'd decided that mailing the money wouldn't work. Abe would probably claim he never got it, and would blackmail him for the rest of his life. No, it was time for more permanent methods of silence...

He cursed as he saw the Ducks outside the building. He kept his head turned and kept driving, heading for the highway. If he was lucky, he could make it to Mexico. He had time, just don't stop.


Later that day, it was all over. That night on the news, it was broadcasted.

"Wildwing Flashblade, Jadestar Flashblade and George Clospick have all been released tonight after police were given fake evidence against them. One man has been caught and charged, while police are still searching for another hockey player, Max Mogel, for questioning." the TV proclaimed.

Duke looked disappointed. "Mogel's long gone now."

Tanya shrugged. "Well, yeah, but we're, like, a full team again!" She said looking at Wildwing and Jadestar, whom we sitting on the comfortable couch. Of course anything would be comfortable compared to there former surroundings.

Nosedive reached for another piece of pizza. "And what's the lesson we've all learned, kiddies?"

Jadestar smirked, she just couldn't resist. Besides, it'd been awhile since she teased her twin. "Don't feed Nosedive pizza?"

"The police are all idiots?"

"Other hockey players are all idiots?"

"I'm thirsty...."

"Jail food is worse then cafeteria food?"

"Computers are evil?"

"That's not true!"

Wildwing shook his head. "We learned that everyone looses a game sometimes, and it's nobody's fault when it happens." he interrupted, stopping the impending argument.

Nosedive made a face, and looked at his slice of pizza. "Well, yeah, sure, if you wanna get all deep an meaningful. I was thinking of never letting Grin choose pizza toppings again."

"What's wrong with lentil and tofu?" Grin asked, turning from the TV to look at him.

"Nothing," Nosedive muttered. "If you're a cow..."

Jadestar grinned happily, listening to the half hearted arguments. It was good to be back. Back to normal at last...


Somewhere in Mexico, Max Mogel frowned as he looked at his bandaged face. Slowly and carefully he removed the white medical wrappings from his face, he looked like a whole new person. He thought quietly, "But to whom...I could go after Clospick. No, if I did that the police would know who I am...but...hmm...since I don't know which duck to that revenge on, wait...wait, wait, wait...I DO know which duck or should I say DUCKS. This was all Jadestar's and Wildwing's fault! I would've gotten away scot free if it weren't for them!" He smiled menacingly. He knew what he had to do. It was time for revenge.

Story Copyright Lauren Speakman and Rachel Baker '99. Jadestar Copyright Rachel Baker '99. Max Mogel Copyright Lauren Speakman '99. All other characters Copyright Disney, and used without permission.