It had been three whole months since Sonic, Silver and Cheshire had disappeared on the planet Klein. And everyone was working their way to find them : Knuckles started his investigation, looking for Cheshire's info about the adventurer and relic hunter guilds. He even travelled in Klein, to try to learn more about the cat.
For his part Tails have created a device to detect Silver's psychic power, energy, and used to travel with the Blue Tornado around Mobius while doing gravity races during his free time to win special prices that could be interesting or help for the investigation for his investigation, along bringing money to finance his life. These race where also a way to relax and forget worries.
Jet, which has learned about Sonic's disappearance thanks to Tails, coopered with the Chaotix to find his rival.
And for Mighty, he remembered as though it was yesterday... probably because he still has nightmares about it almost every night. He wondered: ... what if all 3 of them had gone into that room? Where would he have ended up? Luckily though he stayed behind, which meant he could tell his friends back on Mobius what had happened.
How can someone disappear just like that... Surely that cat had something to do with it.
He was currently in Vector's office, thinking out loud, as he dug through piles & piles of paperwork on Vector's desk.
This place was always a complete and utter mess. He had told his boss and friend Vector in the past to clean this place up. But he always seemed to give him the same response : "Yeah... maybe later Mighty..."
His response would have always annoyed Mighty but instead of getting angry and using his strength to break something; the Armadillo would remain calm and sort out Vector’s desk when he wasn't looking.
Vector, for the last time... Will you please clean up your desk? How are we meant to find anything? Our friend's lives are at risk!
Well... yeah! If Eggman hadn't have destroyed our office wall the other day, then we might be able to afford a filing cabinet. I don't see you offering to buy one.
Typical Vector... he always tried to place the blame on someone else and this was almost pointless. Anyway they had gathered a number of leads from various sources and from the more villainous Mobians on this planet and It turned out that this cat was quite well known amongst their enemies
Thanks to Espio, and his invisibility, the Chameleon was able to follow them to the slightly shadier areas of Mobius and eavesdrop on them.
Guys! Guys! Stop arguing! Look! Look! I found something!
Well... that was lucky... Then again Mighty wasn't really looking around on the floor for a report. Nonetheless he should have been looking there because Vector's desk was so unorganised, that what could be vital information had probably been knocked onto the floor.
Whatta ya got there, Charmy? Lemme see that! Ah ha! I remember this... It's what our pal Knuckles found out for us.
Vector was so excited that he snatched the report out of Charmy's hand leaving him slightly bemused. However that didn't last long because seconds later Charmy was flying around Vector's head trying to snatch the report back.
Stop that, both of you! We should not be standing here messing about. This is why most of our cases don't get solved...
Both of them stopped fighting as soon as Mighty said that. Charmy being young looked like a child who had done something wrong. Whereas Vector looked like he was ready to place the blame on somebody again.
Alright... Let's see what we've got here... The cat goes by the name Cheshire... comes from Klein.
As Vector carried on skipping over details of the report; he kinda phased out Mighty which started to remember back to when Knuckles came to the office.
A month ago, in the Chaotix’s office
It's true! This guy is nothing but bad news! I've been doing some research ever since Sonic & Silver disappeared. I've been reading through the adventurer's guild and found out about this guy named... "Cheshire".
Knuckles slammed an old looking book that was falling apart onto Vector's desk and he then opened it up, pointing to a cat that looked like the one I had encountered months ago.
It says here that he's been performing all sorts of weird rituals and always tries to seek out the most mystical relics. And get this! Everyone who goes on an adventure with him always disappears! And he's always seen hanging around with the bad guys!
Calm down, Knuckles. And why are you coming to me with this information? Should you not be talking to Vector about this? And what if you are wrong about him? There might have been some kind of mix up.
Without waiting the Echidna slammed his fist down on the desk at Mighty’s reply : But this one only, far from provoking Knuckles, was only asking this because he was a detective. And as detective, he knew that the mysteries about Cheshire could be explained with further investigations. Knuckles resumed :
You know Vector?! All this info will be written down and will probably be lost in a pile of paperwork somewhere!
The red Echidna still looked pretty angry, but at least he had calmed down a bit. He even let out a small chuckle, because what he said was true, and I was always cleaning up after him.
Please trust me, Mighty. I've even been to Klein and talked to some of the locals. Some of them just pretended that they didn't know about him. And the others just said that he was bad news and his always acting suspiciously.
Remembering this past event, Mighty then looked at Vector which remained silent, analysing a sheet before speak at his turn.
So there ya have it! We know he could be a bad guy and likes to seek out relics... And that he's seen hanging around with the bad guys. But... maybe the locals hate this guy and he's just misunderstood.
Do the locals know Cheshire correctly? Mighty didn’t knows, however he was aware that the relic-hunter guild whose Cheshire was an active member was not really appreciated by the locals. This international guild was allowed to go in historic places to find relic and artifacts, with or without the locals’ agreement which still considerate the relic-hunter as riders. Even if the guild still had an ethical code.
But even the guildmaster doesn’t hold any personal information on Cheshire which probably used a false name. But as he was quite useful for the guild, they turned a blind eye on this fact. Mighty came to think of it... He almost sounded like a familiar black hedgehog that he knew. Save the relic hunting.
Let's just leave it at that for now shall we? Has anybody heard back from Tails at all? It has been a while since we've heard from him.
Mighty knew that ever since Sonic and Silver had disappeared, Tails had been conducting his own investigation. He was feeling bad for the fox... he was so devastated when he had learnt that his best friend had disappeared into thin air just like that.
Nope! Last time we heard anything from him was when he was racing in the Speed Highway zone.
The Armadillo wanted to say : "Show some concern, Vector". Bothered that this one just put his head phones on and ignored the issue. The poor fox must feel so confused and vulnerable right now.
Probably busy gravity racing on the other side of Mobius again! Wheeee! All that money! He must be richer than us! Hey Vector! Maybe he found a decent lead?! Unlike you!
Ha... The minute Charmy lifted off Vector's headphones, and said that too him. All hell broke loose as Vector flipped his desk over, sending piles of paperwork all over the floor. While Charmy was cowering in a corner somewhere, scared by the sudden reaction.
You little! If I was an inventor like him, then I probably would've built some gizmo!
The fox genius had built some sort of device to detect Silver's psychic abilities.
Mighty have to admit that the kid was really smart and really brave, and he always thought that Tails would not be able to cope without his best friend. But it turns out that he was doing quite well; travelling the whole of Mobius and participating in gravity races. Mighty just hoped that he had found something, unlike them...
So are we at a dead end?! Wait! Wait! Jet! He had an update for us! See! Right here! Right here!
Ah yes... Jet... Thankfully he had asked to help join the investigation. Seeing as though he was... not exactly a good guy.... At first the Chaotix had some qualms to allow Jet to join the investigation. He doesn’t seem the more disinterested Mobian around and there was something fishy about him.
Jet been discreetly surveyed of course, during a whole month, but his behaviour was not unusual and he was really making his input to the investigation, and was now trusted, somewhat. Even if not be the nicest of the guy he was more likely to ask for information to enemies and not get caught out.
Gimme that... Ah ha! Turns out that he met up with some mercenaries a few weeks ago... And it turns out that they have spoken with Cheshire in the past. Which matches up with what our pal Knuckles said. And matches up with what Espio reported back to us.
Yes! Finally! Something to go on! And just when this day was about to end in disaster.
We can trust him?! Right?! Right?! Tails said that he couldn't be trusted! And what was he said?! Something about Sonic owing him! Gurmf! Hey!
Suddenly Vector grabbed Charmy and covered his mouth up his hand at the exasperation of Mighty. Even if he has to admit that Charmy was getting slightly annoying now, he doesn’t thought that Vector’s action was the best course of action. The crocodile then replied.
We can trust him! And it's always useful to have an extra pair of hands helping us out. Besides, If I didn't, then I wouldn't be giving him a USB stick with all of the info we've gathered so far.
USB stick?! The Armadillo was not sure about what Vector just said, is he have heard right? He could've just yelled at him... about this : they were searching through piles of unorganised paperwork, and Jet can just easily look it up on the computer.
You mean... We've had to search through piles of paperwork, and Jet has a digital copy of it all? Unbelievable...
Uhhh... yeah... Ummm...
The noise resounded at the door and this suddenly and firmly opened, revealing the silhouette of the newcomer entering in the office. It was Espio and it seemed as though that the chameleon walking through the door at that very moment, was the perfect chance for Vector to change the subject. And it looked as though he had something important to tell them.
Hey there, Espio! Wasn't expecting you back so soon. And boy... you look exhausted! Whatta ya got for me?
It's... it's Cheshire... We don't have much time! I was at the mercenary bar... And... and... I saw him talking to Fang. They're meant to be... they're meant to be meeting up in the Launch Base zone tonight. We need to get there fast!
They knew they could count on Espio. And they were hopefully going to find out where their friends had disappeared to.
Okay! Okay! Calm down, Espio! We got plenty of time! Charmy... You go with the Espio and... hang on a minute... I know it's in here somewhere... Wear this recording device. That way we can see what they're up to.
Charmy flew over to Vector and peaked over his shoulder, as he dug through a messy drawer. And his thought was that Vector should really clean this place up sometime. The Crocodile then took a small camera video that he used a couple of time during the investigation.
The device could easily be concealed and thanks to the satellite connection can transmit in live anything this camera record. Like for reports there was even a live chat gadget. It been a bit costly device but it was a must-have among investigators.
So Espio, you're saying that this kitty cat, was seen with that meanie Fang? I knew he was bad! I knew it!
The Bee flew around Espio punching the air, as if he was confronting Cheshire. That kitty cat had it coming to him, he made his friends disappear! It would be a good occasion to practice the few martial moves he learned, self-defence mostly. Thanks to Knuckles and Espio.
Yes... and no... That's what I want you to find out. From what I heard at the mercenary bar, Cheshire is meant to be meeting with Fang down an alleyway.
And that's where you want me to come in. You want me to fly! Wheeee! And see where they are and record it.
An alleyway, huh? Guess whatever they were doing down there was meant to be a secret. Well! Not for long! Charmy thought. He was so excited about catching the bad guys in the act that he didn't realise that Vector had grabbed him.
Hey! Lemme go!
Charmy struggled in his grasp, as Vector tried to get the recording device around his forehead. While Vector commentated.
Yeah! Yeah! Everything you see will be transmitted back to the office. We'll stay here so we can watch the footage as it happens. Also your camera has a tracking device on it, so that we know where you are at all times.
Charmy wanted to face the “baddies”? Then he will have the opportunity. Vector thought it could be a good experience for the Bee for his investigator apprenticeship. Sure, Espio doubted a bit of this, worried for Charmy even if he doesn’t showed it and Vector had qualms to use the kid too. But this one can fly : which is useful to leave without traces and be unreachable for any encounter.
The bee was not hiding that nonetheless he was worried to do a bad encounter, a bit scared too… But he was sure that he can handle the mission successfully. And it was quite exciting.
In the Launch Base zone, shortly after.
Yaawwnn! This is soooo boring... Boring! Boring! Booorriingg!
Charmy was now in the Launch Base zone, and had been flying about for the past 10 minutes, and he still hadn't found anything. The sky was dark, but the streets were still lighted up by the streets lamps even if not numerous in this area. Zone of all in fame, brothel, pub and mercenary guilds were settled there, in the outskirt of the city to not be bothered. Yet, the noise from the town canter’s activity could yet be heard.
Not only mercenaries or adventurers, but also gang were settled in the area and were known to be quite blood-headed and prompt to cause troubles or look for a fight to anyone bothering them. Generally for stupide reason or makeshift justifications.
The Bee thought he should maybe just fly back and find Espio. But not without actually resting first.
It was pretty cold out tonight, and really dark and scary but Vector had made me go to the Launch Base zone to follow one of Espio's leads but luckily Espio was nearby just in case I ran into any trouble.
I apologise, Charmy, but you need to keep looking. If you need to... you can land on the path beneath you, and walk around for a bit.
Boy! Thanks Espio!
As if that wasn't even more boring... But at least the bee was able to rest his wings now. So he followed the path and started to hear resounding voices, not far from him. And what he heard sounded fishy… he was sure to have found them.
[…]I trust that you were not followed... And yes... Before you ask, I made sure that nobody followed me.
Charmy quickly flew over to nearest wall and stuck his head around the corner. He then looked into the brightly lit alleyway, and saw Cheshire and Fang. Both of them seemed too busy with each other, so there was no chance of being spotted.
Full clothed save his cloak, something weird was oozing from Cheshire : His voice was slight darker, sinister, and his hat was almost hiding his eyes. Giving him an ominous allure: he was clearly not there for joking. And Fang could feel it, but he remained calm, like Cheshire was. The Cat was very dead-serious, and very looking like a predator analysing a prey.
Yeah, yeah! I wasn't followed, cat! So this gem that ya want... Why exactly do ya want it? And why do ya want me to steal it for ya? Ain't you the treasure hunter?
Watching nervously hoping that they hadn't seen him watching them, Charmy tried to be as invisible as he could. Fortunately the two “baddies” they were too busy staring at eachother.
Nesnelar avcısı, "Relic-hunter". Wealth doesn’t interest me. And yes... But I hear that you and your gang have quite the reputation for stealing things. And as I said, I am an adventurer, not a thief. And remember... I know where Sonic is. This means that you and your gang can ride of him off once and for all.
You still didn't answer my question! But 'cause I like stealing... And 'cause ya know where that blue 'hog is. I'll steal it for ya! Now hand over the map!
"No! Meanie! Meanie! Don't let him hurt my friend!" was the thought if the kid. Right now he just wanted to fly over there and sting them both! But he knew it'd probably end in disaster for him if I tried to.
Charmy watched closely as the cat took a large piece of paper out of his pants' pocket. He then looked around before placing it in Fang's hand, and starting to walk away
Make sure that nobody else sees that... We will meet again soon... And I trust that you will have that gem stone for me.
And immediately he vanished, teleporting himself like a shadow, a slight chuckle from his voice still resounding.
No! No! No! I was hoping that he'd stay for longer and hopefully tell him where Sonic and Silver were...
Charmy was really upset now... But at least he knew now that he was connected to the bad guys in some way. A voice immediately resounded in the kid’s hear, or rather from the camera.
Charmy... Did you hear that?! That Cheshire guy wants to hurt Sonic! I’ll inform Espio, the mission is over. You get back to the office! Now! Ha ha! Talk about it being my lucky day as well!
Yeah, yeah Vector... You got lucky... Lucky for you that Espio is a much better detective than you.
But Vector has ended the chat before Charmy could reply. During this time Espio received the order to return in the office, and eased that Charmy didn’t been spotted or harmed, made himself invisible and left the area, jumping from roofs to roofs.
Silent, the Bee watched Fang walking away, while removing his hat to clean sweat on his forehead, sighting before leaving the zone as well. Quickly the place became desert like if nothing happened. Sure that there were no one around, Charmy started to fly away and crossed the dark alley and speaking to himself.
I saw it! I saw it all! And I heard it! Now I Urrmf!
He was so excited and proud as he flew away that he didn't realise that anybody else was around until he bumped into something that felt like a brick wall, losing his equilibrium. Surprised he opened his eyes and was facing some scary looking thugs. Which turned at him, visible taking this poor move as a provocation.