::Ten minutes later, Mepps is stationed on one of the stair railings going down to the lower lobby, where he pulls out a stick and a lighter.  He tries to light the stick with the idea of holding the small torch's flame up to one of the sprinklers but as he tilts the lighter at an awkward angle he catches the tip of his tail on fire instead::


Mepps: BOSS! BOSS!


::Mepps' flailing tail gets right under one of the sprinkler heads and alarms go off everywhere.  The guards around the trophy case start running toward Mepps::


Guard: Hey you, stop!




::In moments, Mepps and the guards are running around upstairs::


Fat Cat: Even better than I'd planned it.  You should never take a moron for granted.  Ugh, this water from the sprinklers is ruining my suit...


::With all the commotion above, it was an easy matter for Fat Cat to climb the glass case where Wart had already broken the lock.  Together they lift the case and there admire the treasures inside::



::Fat Cat rubs his paws together in fiendish glee and takes only the acorn atop the Lifetime Achievement award.  Then he jumps down, the straining henchmen teetering before they fall over. The display shatters.  Fat Cat could care less as he holds up the acorn::


Fat Cat:  Come, my worthless flunkies, the power sought by the multitudes is mine alone!


::Fat Cat holds up the glittering diadem, wet from the sprinklers and shining in the track lights.  He stares at the acorn for five and then ten seconds, his smile beginning to fade.  Another half-minute and he drops the acorn with a groan::


Wart: What's wrong, boss?


Fat Cat: It's only gold!


Wart: But I thought that's what—


::Fat Cat grabbed Wart's tuxedo lapels and shook him::


Fat Cat: Don't you understand? I'm not after some mere pricey prize this time, I'm after the power to control destiny itself!


Mole: Like a king-size candy bar?


::Fat Cat motions for the others to follow him.  The drenched lot just reaches the lobby when the Rangers stand  there across the way::


Monty:  I already had my sleeves rolled up before we even left HQ, to save me the time of doing it now, seein' as how we knew you'd all be here.  Time to rumble or do you wanna just defeat yourselves and save us the trouble?


Dale:  Yeah, you guys have no imagination!  Always trying the same thing every year.


Fat Cat: Oh, little do you know, Rescue Rangers.  If I'd found what I was after, I would have changed the very fabric of reality itself!


Gadget:  Reality isn't like a fabric at all, its more like—


Chip:  Hand over the gold, Fat Cat and we'll take it easy on you!  Don't make us get rough with you.


Fat Cat (dismissing): Oh, please.  You know we're going to run, so you might as well accept it. MOVE!


::With that, Fat Cat heads for the stairs to the mezzanine, his minions right behind and all of them dripping.  The Rangers gave chase, and soon Fat Cat is breathing hard::


Fat Cat: I'm getting too old for this.  But with age comes wisdom...


::Fat Cat grabs hold of the end of a long piece of rope, used for tying up banners to advertise the various shows at the Hall.  He runs that end of the rope through a large metal eye-hook used to anchor the rope and whistles for Mepps::


Fat Cat:  Mepps, hold this rope.


::Mepps takes hold of the rope::


Mepps:  Why boss?


Fat Cat: So I can use you as a distraction while I escape!


::Fat Cat pushes Mepps over the edge of the railing and moments later a hysterical cat is swinging around the crowded room below, sending the confused people running around in a panic.  Fat Cat topples over the rest of his gang to delay the heroes as he makes his escape out the emergency exit, setting off the alarm::


::The cat runs as fast as he can, his rotund body quaking with the exertion, eventually finding refuge in a pitch black alley.  Once he is finally free he leans against a wall, panting for breath::

Fat Cat:  Those repulsive Rescue Rodents think they can outwit me?  Ha!  I was one step ahead of them every time!  Nothing catches me off guard.


::He takes a few steps and falls into an open manhole::