In 1995, Archie Comics had the license to produce comics based on various Hanna-Barbera properties (i.e. Scooby-Doo, Flintstones, Wacky Races, etc.). This lasted a little more than a year before the line was scrapped, and DC picked up the license in 1997, which is still active, 17 years later, though focusing mostly on Scooby. One of the first H-B comics from Archie presented a once in a lifetime meeting of two comedy heroes who actually shared a 1 hour block on NBC from 1965-7---Atom Ant & Secret Squirrel. Two years prior, H-B introduced the next generation of Secret Squirrel, but didn't get to the official passing of the torch, in a backup segment on 2 Stupid Dogs. Not long ago, we met this generation's Atom Ant, and now, it's time for another once in a lifetime meeting. All characters, save for ones I've created, are copyright Hanna-Barbera/Warner Bros.. ======================================= Chapter 1: At the InterSpecies Intelligence Service (ISIS), the Chief has sent for his most trusted agent, Agent 0000.1---also known as Secret Squirrel, who arrives, predictably, in the most convoluted fashion possible, through a removable tile in the ceiling. "Secret Squirrel reporting for duty as ordered, sir.", the agent said, saluting the Chief, a yak. "Oh, you are so much more professional than your uncle was, Secret.", the Chief replied. "To cut right to business, Goldflipper has escaped from custody, and is headed for a most unlikely place, at least for him." "Maybe not so unlikely.", Secret answered, "If it's Sea World." "Smashing! Do you really believe he'll hole up there?" "Absolutely. Millions of humans won't know an international fugitive is in their midst." Just then, Morocco Mole entered the office, having overheard the conversation. "Sorry to interrupt.", he said, "But there are two Sea Worlds where Goldflipper could be headed. One in San Diego, the other in Miami." "It would be in Miami, then, Morocco.", Secret replied. "It's close enough to Goldflipper's former island headquarters." ======================================================== Ah, but it's not Sea World at all. Instead, Goldflipper has taken up residence in a most unusual venue. "Your request was received within an hour of your departure from ISIS prison.", Dr. Sergius McFadden said. "Everything is ready." "Good, good!", Goldflipper exclaimed. "The sooner we get on with this, the better. I have much work to do to get even with that accursed Secret Squirrel!" McFadden activated a device on the table, and a beam of light enveloped Goldflipper. Within seconds, the master criminal was gone, and in his place was a human of similar size, a bald man dressed in yellow, including his 3-piece suit. He quickly admired himself in the mirror. "Excellent work, doctor!!", he exclaimed. "Goldflipper was just a convienent disguise that served me well for years, but now, after hiding amidst the animal kingdom, it is time for Yellow Pinkie to become master of the underworld!!!" ================================================== Three weeks later, at a charity softball game in Washington, Yellow Pinkie made his first move, robbing the box office of the gate receipts, and a giant, gold plated diamond shaped like a softball. It was some 25 feet high, weighing 1 1/2 tons. The aptly named Softball Diamond was airlifted out of the stadium, and caught the attention of one interested observer, Army Intelligence investigator Allison Powers. "So, the rumors were true.", she thought to herself. "Yellow Pinkie has come out of retirement, behaving as if he'd never left." Allison reached into her purse and pulled out a small, clear plastic box containing a brown termite named Chester, who was getting hungry and excited at the same time. "Dinner time already, Ali?", he asked. "No. We have work to do, Chet. Let's go.", Allison replied. Seconds later, Allison ducked into an empty ladies room, and hid her purse and duffel bag, containing her outer clothes, in a loose tile on the floor. Dressed in a red leotard and flesh colored tights, she pulled up a crimson hood over her head as Chester waited on one of the sinks. Allison extended her arms on either side. "It's been a while, Chet, so bear with me.", she said. "Up and At'em, Atom Ant!!!" Seconds later, five bands of atomic energy encircled the sleuth, transforming her into Atom Ant, who promptly shrank to insect size. "How are we going to follow them, AA?", Chester asked. "Easy. That diamond will drag them down. Let's hustle." The two insects flew through an open window and ventured out into the night sky, but...... "That's impossible! They're gone!", Atom cried. "This was supposed to be easy, huh?", Chester replied. "I underestimated our new enemy. Maybe atomic vision will pick up Yellow Pinkie's trail." Adjusting the visor on her helmet, Atom Ant used a spectrascope to pick up Yellow Pinkie's tracks, but there was another surprise. "He's tricked us, using multiple images to throw us off the trail. We'll never catch him now, because once we get through the holograms, he'll be far away." "Not if we just ignore the holos.", Chester replied. "Might as well keep the visor and the atomic vision in play." "Good idea, Chet." ==================================================== Ok, so Allison has become Atom Ant again. How that happened, and how she was able to train a termite to become her partner, will be part of chapter 2. As for Secret & Morocco, keep reading.