Disclaimer: This story is part of the COE Final Reckoning series and follows on from the events of COE Final Reckoning Minion of Darkness, COE Final Reckoning After the Minion, COE Final Reckoning ID War, Crisis of Faith.
By the Q-team
By the Q-team
At the S. I. U. station Inspector Nash Bridges was bringing in one of many perpetrators who decided that during the city rebuilding that it would be a good time to take up looting. “Hey Nash, what’s this guy’s story?” A. J. Shimamura asked.
Nash, along with his partner Joe Dominguez, brought in someone who looked like an 1980’s heavy metal rocker and fought the whole way he was being taken to booking. “Hey A. J.” Nash called out. This guy was trying to make off with one of those new high density T. V. ‘s that you heard about on the news, and decided to use it to score some heavy duty smack with a drug dealer.”
“It was for my sister” the perp said. “She has trouble sleeping at night.”
“Yeah well bubba, you give your sister enough of that stuff she’ll be out like a light for the rest of her life if you know what I mean. Evan, take this guy down to booking!” Evan Cortez followed Nash’s order and took the thug away. Nash and Joe then immediately headed for their desks.
“Wow man.” Joe said. “The whole city is attacked and the maggots look to feast on the carcass.”
“I know what you mean bubba.” Nash said. “It’s a good thing the city’s being rebuilt quickly though. Businesses are even taking money out of their earthquake funds to help rebuild.” Nash then bowed his head down as he added. “It’s too bad we can’t raise the dead though.”
“I know man.” Joe nodded sadly. “But Harvey’s down at Berkley where some of those metal things have been taken, and the scientists there are looking to find out what they can about them. With any luck we’ll find out what they are, and who sent them.”
“Yeah well I know what they are bubba. They’re killers.” Nash said. “As for who sent them, well I’d love to get my hands on the bastard who did.” Joe nodded in agreement then decided to change the subject. “How’s Cassidy?” he asked.
“She’s okay.” Nash said. “She’s still on her silver kick, but she seems all right. She’s spending a lot of her time with her friend Alison.”
“The one Lisa says is a bad influence on her, that Alison?” Joe asked sarcastically.
“Well when you’re one of many heroes on T. V. I guess it does wonders for your rep.” Nash smiled. It was then Harvey Leek came back with two Cylon heads, and a look of fear and puzzlement etched on his face. “Hey Harv.” Nash called out to his colleague. “What’s the big mystery.”
Harvey looked at his friend and said “Nash, you’d better get the guys together. I think they’d better hear this.” Nash looked at Joe and decided to tell A. J. that Harvey wants to see them in the briefing room.
Soon all the S. I. U. cops were seated and Harvey had their complete attention. Harvey brought the two Cylon heads before the cops. One a standard centurion, the other was a Trilon.
“Okay.” Harvey said. “I’m sure you guys know our friends here.” Harvey said. “Some specialists at Berkley have been poking around these guys’s CPU’s hoping to find out just who these guys are and what they’re doing here.”
“We already know what they’re doing here.” Bryn Carson said. “They’re here to kill people.”
“It goes a little deeper than that.” Harvey said. “Or maybe it doesn’t here let me explain.” Everyone in the room had Harvey’s attention.
“Now guys, the lab boys at Berkley have only now begun to start cracking the codes on these guys, so we don’t have much information on them. But what we did find will take us on a trip to Bizzaroville.” Nash asked what all the lab boys had to find so far.
“Well Nash, we all know these guys are called Cylons, but they are divided into different subgroups.” Harvey explained as he picked up the head of the Centurion first. “This guy here is what is known as the Cylon Centurion. Standard grunt for the Cylon Empire. They’re slow, bulky, and rely only on what’s been programmed into them.”
“What about the other guy?” Joe asked. “The one with the face like a ‘Y’.”
“Ah now Joseph. That’s where we get interesting.” Harvey said as he picked up the Trilon head. “This dude here is experimental. He’s supposed to be stronger, faster, more cunning, and more agile than our run of the mill Centurion here.” Harvey motioned to the Centurion head and continued. “According to the guys at Berkley the ‘Y’ faced guys are the field assassins of the merry little Cylon Empire.”
“Okay.” A. J. said. “We know who these guys are, now all we need to know is what do they want? Why kill so many people in San Francisco?”
“A. J.” Harvey said in mock disbelief. “Bryn here already said it. The Cylons here are out to kill everybody.”
“Wait a minute Harv.” Evan said. ‘Are you saying that these things want to kill everyone in San Francisco?”
Harvey looked at Evan as if he was some naïve little kid. “Not just in San Francisco Evan. These ‘Cylons’ as they call themselves want to kill everyone on the planet.”
No one knew what to say after that.
At her base below San Francisco Circuit Breaker looked at the new gold Cylon Centurion that was being created before her. “Specter, report.”
“By your command.” Specter said. “Vulpa II is now operational We have also begun work on new Centurions and Trilon units.”
“How soon will new centurions be ready?” Circuit Breaker asked.
“A full battalion should be created within four hours.” Specter said.
“Excellent.” She said. “When Vulpa and the centurions are ready inform me at once. I have a mission for them.”
Specter was startled by Circuit Breaker’s admission. “Are you going to launch another attack against the human city?” he asked.
“No” she said. “I want them for a capture mission. It’s high time I spoke with my sister’sï¿½replacement.”
Specter paused and then answered “By your command” before he returned to his work. Circuit Breaker then turned back to the screen and looked at a blip on it. A blip of silver.
“All right whoever you are. We’re going to have a little talk.”
At the Bogard family home Cassidy Bridges was in the middle of a fight, with Alison Bogard.
Cassidy was wearing boxing headgear with her hands bound within boxing gloves. Alison was also in the same gear, and she was laying in all the blows. “Come on Cass get with it!’ Alison said trying to urge her friend on.
“Tell me again why we’re doing this?” Cassidy asked. “I already have the Silver Zeo Crystal. Why do I need to learn how to fight again?” Clearly Cassidy was tired but Alison wasn’t about to let Cassidy get off that easily.
“Because the day may come when your crystal may up and leave you. And when that happens your newfound fighting abilities may up and leave you as well, then where will you be?” Cassidy nodded getting Alison’s point but then Cassidy asked, while throwing a punch, “Okay but why kickboxing?”
“It seemed like the best choice at the time.” Alison said. “From what I’ve seen kickboxing seems like one you can master the quickest.”
“What about your own style?Thatï¿½Hakkyokusaiken?”
Alison immediately shook her head no. “Would take too long. Even I took a while before I could fire off my first Crack Shot.” It was then that Cassidy snuck in her shot with a punch upside Alison’s head and a kick to her stomach. Cassidy then stood as the victor and Alison looked up at the ceiling. “Sneaky.” She said with a smirk.
“Hey you said keep my eye open for opportunities.” Cassidy then offered her hand and Alison pulled herself up as the two girls then took showers and got changed. Alison was back in her t-shirt and jeans while Cassidy wore a maroon outfit with silver patchings and silver leggings. “I will admit you’re getting the hang of it.” Alison said.
“Thanks.” Cassidy said as she blocked a kick coming in from behindï¿½from Alison. Turning around Cassidy smiled “But you did tell me to stay on my guard didn’t you?” Alison smiled and nodded and put her foot back down.
“So what are you up to?” Alison asked Cassidy.
“I don’t know.” Cassidy answered. “I’m thinking of perhaps calling an old family friend and seeing what else he knows about the crystal.
“Really?” Alison asked coyly. “Anyone I know?”
“You might.” Cassidy answered. “Ever hear of Laocorn Gaudeamas?”
Alison’s smile faded as she remembered Laocorn from her meeting during the Cylon attack and from what her cousin Terry told her about him. “I know of him. And we met when those metal things had shown up.”
“Alison, you okay?” Cassidy asked wondering why her friend was so cold and distant now.
“Yeah Cass, just one thing I need to ask. How much do you know about Laocorn Gaudeamas?”
Cassidy was surprised at the question. Especially when she heard Alison’s tone in which it was asked. “Well, he helped my father with a case last year when a charity ball was attacked. Yet there also seems to be a sense of mystery about him. Why do you know something?”
Alison sighed. “Nothing that I’m sure I can say. My cousin Terry met him once before and he could probably explain things better than I can. Just be careful O. K.? I want to see you come home in one piece.”
Cassidy nodded and said “Okay, and I’ll also see if I can get my teammates to come over. You going to be home tonight?”
Alison then went back to her ‘good friend’ persona and said “Nope, I’m going to see if I can make a few dollars tonight. I’m going to the rink.”
Cassidy smiled and hoped her friend would stay in one piece. “Well you take care of yourself you hear?”
“You got it.” Alison said as she gave her friend a hug before Cassidy left. As Cassidy walked on down the street she picked up her cell phone and called the number Laocorn left her. When Panni answered she had immediately patched the call to Laocorn.
“Mr. Gaudeamas?” Cassidy asked. “Would you mind if I came to the office tonight? I’d like to ask you more about the Crystal I have as well as ask who the other Rangers might be?”
“Of course Cassidy.” Laocorn said on the other end of the line. “Would eight o’clock sound good to you?”
“That will be fine.” Cassidy said. “I’ll be at your office then.” She then hung up and Laocorn then called the Outsider’s penthouse to tell them what would be going on.
At the penthouse Lillian O’Neil waited for a call that would tell her that it would be okay for her to call Tommy, and tell him all that had been going on, but Laocorn and Tyler asked her to wait. “I want to see if we can get Cassidy here before we bring in the other Zeo Rangers” was Laocorn’s reasoning. Reasoning that Tyler agreed with.
So Lillian sat and waited until Laocorn called telling her that it was okay for her to call Tommy. Finally the phone rang and Lillian picked it up. “Laocorn did she call?” Lillian was quick to ask.
“Yes Lillian.” Laocorn said. “She will be at the office around eight o’clock tonight. You can call your boyfriend and explain things to him as well as let him know that the Silver Zeo Ranger will be at my office tonight as well.”
Lillian never felt so relieved. She so much wanted to tell Tommy what was happening. “Thank you Laocorn. Thank you! Thank you!” She then hung up and gave Tommy a call on her communicator.
Inside the TARDIS Tommy Oliver was doing his early morning kata when his communicator went off. “This is Tommy I read you.”
“Tommy? It’s Lillian.” The voice on the other end said. Immediately Tommy’s mind snapped to awareness.
“Lillian where are you? What’s going on?”
“It’s a long story.” Lillian explained. “Would you meet me at Pier 39 in sayï¿½one hour? I’ll explain everything there.”
“Sure.” Tommy said. “Will you be coming alone?”
“Yeah, everyone else is out right now. Besides, I want it to be just the two of us.” Lillian said.
“I’ll be right there.” Tommy said as he shut off his communicator and headed straight for his room to have a shower and a quick change of clothes before going to meet Lillian. When he was ready to go he made his way to the door as a voice asked “Where do you think you’re going?”
Tommy looked around and saw the Doctor sticking his head out from under the console. Tommy smirked as he thought of the Doctor tinkering with it again. He always seemed to be. “I got a call from Lillian.” Tommy said. “I’m meeting her at Pier 39.”
“Oh wondering why she’s here?” the Doctor asked.
“For the most part.” Tommy answered. “And who they’re working for.”
“Hmmm. Well have fun.” The Doctor said as he went back to work under the console. Tommy was confused at the Doctor’s reaction, and wondered if there was something he should have asked or mentioned. The Doctor did seem to know a little bit more about things than he let on, and Tommy wondered if this wasn’t one of those times. The Doctor also took notice that Tommy was still inside and said “You still here?”
“Uhhh sorry. I was just wondering if there was anything else you needed to say.” Tommy answered sheepishly.
“Don’t worry. You’ll find out on your own.” The Doctor answered. Then Tommy left to go to Pier 39 where Lillian was waiting. Under the console the Doctor continued to tinker hoping that Tommy could handle the news that the Outsiders now worked for Gaudeamas.
~And what would the Outsiders’ reaction be when they found out about the evil he had done with the Armor of Mars. ~ the Doctor thought to himself. ~ Would they be able to handle it?~
On Branch street the seven Astro Rangers were walking around the town of San Francisco trying to familiarize themselves with the town. “Wow.” Ashley said. “This is quite impressive.”
“Yes.” Andros said. “This city seems to be recovering from the Cylon attack very well.” Andros said. Ashley rolled her eyes as Andros missed the whole point of her sentence.
“No Andros. It’s just that some of us don’t get out of Angel Grove very much. There’s a lot of our own planet some of us haven’t seen. Whenever we’re in someplace new it doesn’t hurt to take a look around and take the place in.”
“Ashley’s just being a tourist.” Cassie said explaining Ashley’s statement.
Sabrina however looked out at the Golden Gate Bridge in the distance hoping that she would be able to see the sun set over it as the fabled stories often said of it. She had heard that it was quite beautiful when that happened. “You okay?” T. J. asked Sabrina who seemed a little startled.
“Sorry, it’s just that I’ve heard stories about the Golden Gate and how it looks when the sun shines off it. And before I leave I’d like to see them for myself.” Sabrina said as she then shook herself out of her reverie and resumed her focus on her fellow Astro teammates and their missions here.
“Okay.” Andros said. “Now we have two probable addresses on where Silver Zeo could be. Zhane, Sabrina and I will take those. T. J. , you, Cassie, Carlos, and Ashley will go to the address the phone service provided and see what you can find out about this ‘Alison Bogard’ and what her connection might be to Ashley if there is one.”
“You got it Andros.” T. J. said. Soon Cassie, Carlos and Ashley left to find Alison Bogard’s house. Ashley looked forward to it with eager anticipation. Sabrina, Andros and Zhane were left behind looking to see which of the two addresses they would take. Zhane quickly said that he would take the one with the condemned building in it.
“Are you sure Zhane?” Andros asked. “I mean, don’t you want Sabrina to go with you?”
“No Andros I’ll be fine.” Zhane said shrugging off his friend’s concern. “Besides, what if she’s living in one of those places? It’s my duty to make sure that the girl who brought me out of cryo-storage has adequate living conditions, and if she wants to move in with me on the Megaship then I intend to give her that option.”
Andros couldn’t help but chuckle at his friend’s hamming. Even Sabrina rolled her eyes at Zhane’s show. “Okay we’ll take the other address.” Andros said. “You try to stay out of trouble will you?”
“Hey Andros. No problem.” Zhane said as he took off down the street. Sabrina smiled as she saw Zhane walking away.
“Well he seems to be in a good mood.” Sabrina said.
“Yeah, it’s not everyday you’re pulled out of cryo sleep by a girl you don’t really know.” Andros said. Then he and Sabrina made their way up the San Francisco hill heading towards their destination.
As they walked Carlos walked by Ashley’s side as Cassie walked by T. J. ‘s. “Nervous?” Carlos asked.
“Wouldn’t you be?” Ashley answered. “It’s not every day you find you have a double out there and she just might be your own sister.”
“Yeah, and you also have to ask yourself what her family is like too.” T. J. added. Cassie knew how the Bogards would be like having met Terry once, but thought she’d leave Ashley the pleasure of finding out herself. All she’d say was “I think you might like them Ash. From what I could see on the vid monitor they raised her to be a pretty good kid.”
“Yeah. How many others would act selflessly as she did fighting those Cylons?” Carlos asked.
“How about this whole town?” Cassie answered. “They all tried to do what they could when they attacked. “Everyone agreed.
“Well, let’s find this ‘Bogard’ house and make our introductions.” Ashley said as the four Astro Rangers walked to find Alison’s home. An hour later they had to stop and ask for directions. All the while the Astros took in the sights San Francisco had to offer.
Speaking of Bogards…
At San Francisco National Airport, Alison’s elder cousin, Terry Bogard was waiting the arrival of his brother and sister-in-law.
However he wasn’t waiting alone.
Sitting in a chair next to him was a young woman. But she was anything but ordinary.
Her eyes were shimmering, orbicular pools of an icy blue cast which peer through a few stray gold tresses which hangs over her soft skin, the remainder is cut short, up to her jawline. Her slender form hiding an immasculine strength, which isn’t visible at a first glance.
A bright crimson red, sleeveless top hugged the curves of her bust, revealing her shoulders and her well toned slender waist; fingerless dark blue leather gloves adorns her hands; and long, easy to move dark blue pants are held up by a brown belt and the bottom parts are tucked in to her sporty leather boots. Two outlined, golden stars are sewn in to the sides of her pants, along the thigh area.
“Almost time for their plane to come in.” the woman told Terry. She didn’t hear him reply so she looked to her friend.
Terry was looking into a file. A file all about Alison, her biological family, and the exact circumstances of how she ended up being sold in an auction.
Terry looked at her. “Mary… are you absolutely certain about everything you found?”
Mary Ryan, also called Blue Mary, looked at Terry feeling insulted. “Don’t tell me your doubting what I found.”
“No. That’s not why I said that…” Terry replied still completely calm. “It’s just that I’m already feeling very disgusted with this Dr Edward Jacobs.”
“That’s taking it very lightly.” Mary replied.
“Especially into caparison to what Andy, Mai, Grandfather, and especially Alison will react once they see this.” Terry stated.
“… Oh.” Mary said simply realizing what he meant. Terry would want to make sure Dr Jacobs paid for what he did but he wouldn’t assault him.
Neither Terry or Mary could say the same about the others especially Alison.
“In a way it’s ironic. Alison tries to emulate me while creating her own image yet her spirit is more like Andy’s than it is mine.” Terry said. “Both speak their mind and go with their emotions though Andy’s not so brash these days.”
“Getting your ass kicked a few times is bound to do that you.”
Terry and Mary turned around and saw two figures standing in the arrival ramp. One was a platinum blonde haired, blue-eyed young man. He wore a blue jacket, a black tank top and black pants. Right next to was a young woman with brown eyes and reddish-brown hair which falls down past her waist. She was wearing black and yellow bike shorts, a yellow shirt and a yellow cap on her head.
Terry smiled as he gave shook his brother’s hand. “Good to see you Andy.”
Andy Bogard smiled back. “Same here. Just wish we were seeing each other under better circumstances.”
“This whole thing with those metal machines is sounding just like that mess with the Armor two years ago.” Mai Shiranui-Bogard replied. She then softened when she saw Terry flinch a bit. “Oh god Terry I’m…”
“No… it’s okay Mai.” Terry shook his head as he hugged his sister-in-law. “It gets better for me though.”
“But you aren’t going to let it go are you?” Andy said facing his brother. Before he could say anything Terry looked at his younger brother. “Let’s not start with this now Andy. I didn’t call you from Japan to come down to open up old wounds.”
“Alright bro.” ~ At least for now. ~ Andy added to himself.
Mai looked over at Mary and smiled. “Hey Mary. Nice seeing you again. So you actually considering King’s and my proposal to join Team Gorgeous for this years KOF?”
Mary shrugged. “You’ve still got a few more weeks before the tournament starts. I’m sure you can find a replacement for Yuri. Sides I don’t know if I’ll have the time for it. I’ve got a different job style than you Mai.”
“Yeah I know. So, you and Terry talk a lot while waiting for us?” Mai asked.
Both Terry and Mary redden a bit and just couldn’t say much at that moment.
“Look Andy. Their speechless.” Mai smiled at her husband.
~That was nice Mai but not exactly the right time. ~ Andy thought to himself. He then looked at his brother. “Terry.”
Terry snapped out of it. “Um right. Well um let’s go get your luggage and head on out.”
Mai just smiled. “Oh don’t worry Terry. We only brought on carry ons and he should be bringing them out soon enough.”
“He?” Terry asked.
“I don’t like being the bag carrier Mai!”
Terry and Mary looked around and saw a young brown haired man in a yellow sweatshirt with blue jeans coming to them. In one hand was a light duffel bag. In the other was a large bag, which was over his back.
“Joe?!” Terry gasped in surprise.
“Yeah! Who were you expecting Kyo Kusanagi?” Joe Higashi said putting the bag down. “And Mai why did you have to bring in this thing?”
“Because I like to be prepared and I think we should actually spend at least a week since we made the trip across continents.” She then looked at Andy. “Right honey?”
Andy didn’t reply as he stayed silent. Joe laughed. “Oh she’s got you whipped pal.”
The response was getting hit in the face by one of Mai’s fans. “You keep quiet.”
“Guys. No fighting okay.” Terry said and was seeing that Joe was getting up.
“I would ask why you didn’t really think of getting in touch with me but then again you probably thought of this as family business.” Joe said.
“Actually I was thinking more along the lines that I couldn’t get a hold of you at the locations that you have phone numbers at.” Terry replied.
“… oh. Sorry for jumping ahead.” Joe amended. “Anyway I was paying Andy and Mai a surprise visit when they were just about to go walk out the door to go to the airport. They told me and I just felt…”
“Joe you don’t even have to say anything. You’re one of our best friends. I’m glad you came.” Terry said holding out his hand and Joe shook hit. “Hey. Glad I’m here too.”
Andy looked at Mary. “So what exactly did you find out about Alison’s birth family?”
“We’ll tell you about in Mary’s van.” Terry said as he went over to Joe. “Here let me help.”
“Hey thanks man.” Joe replied relieved he didn’t have to carry Mai’s stuff all alone.
“How did she rope you into carrying her stuff?” Terry asked.
“You don’t want to know.” Joe said simply.
Mary picked up her brown bomber jacket and then walked along side Terry. However Andy and Mai were not walking with them.
“He still hasn’t gotten over Sulia.” Mai said.
“Even though we all forgave Laocorn for what happened now, it still surprises me how Terry was so easily and so quickly able to forgive him.” Andy sighed. Mai held her husband. “He’s got the biggest heart in the world.”
“Yeah… but he’s denying his own happiness. Letting fear of the past get to him.” Andy sighed. He then looked at Terry and Mary and then at Mai who nodded knowing what he was thinking. He then looked up, “Come on. We don’t want to keep them waiting.”
Mai nodded and they then followed their friends out of the airport.
Pier 39 was something more like a shopping center than it was a pier. Sure there were some boats that came in from time to time, but they were ferry boats that took tourists out on San Francisco Bay to show all the sights the city possessed. Other than that Pier 39 was more geared to shoppers and young people with its stores and arcades.
Lillian stood on the dock waiting for Tommy to come. Her black sleeveless shirt and white and black checkered skirt showed off her dark personality while the bay air and sunlight reflecting off her sandy brown hair showed off the light aspects of her being. Looking out at the bay Lillian decided that she liked San Francisco. It was not a ‘perfect’ town with ‘perfect’ people like Angel Grove was. San Francisco was full of ‘real’ people with ‘real’ quirks in their lifestyles. Like when a sales clerk asked a man if he wanted the ladies pumps bagged or if he was going to wear them. Lillian thought with a smile.
~A smile. How often do I do that?~ she thought. Nowadays it seemed like there was very little that made her smile. She thought of Tommy, and that made her smile. Her brother Parker and her parents made her smile. Her teammates, and the good times they had together made her smile. ~ Like the ‘pool party’ we had when Laocorn showed us our new digs. ~ she thought. Yes, that was another thing that made Lillian O’Neil smile.
~But what else does?~ she asked herself. Thinking back Lillian couldn’t think of one. It was almost as if when Biilly had Tyler activate their programming the ability to feel any joy out of anything except beating down Power Rangers was removed from them. Lillian felt a few bursts of joy from some memories, but little else. To Lillian it seemed like little by little Biilly’s influence was ebbing away, but in other instances it seems like it was not eroding fast enough.
This only made Lillian’s resolve to make Biilly pay for what he did even stronger. And she had no doubt that the other Outsiders felt the same way. But that day was for another time. Right now, she wanted to take in the Bay Area sun and wait for her boyfriend to show up.
Her waiting didn’t take long when she heard a familiar voice speak behind her. ‘Hello Lillian.” It said. Lillian turned around and gave another of her rare smiles as she recognized the voice calling her.
Standing on the dock was Tommy Oliver. His red flannel shirt fluttering in the breeze open showing a white t-shirt with blue jeans and hiking boots to complete the ensemble. Rushing up to him Lillian embraced Tommy with a hug and they two kissed like two lost loves that hadn’t seen each other in a long time. Which was true in both cases.
“Oh God I missed you.” Lillian said as the two broke away from their liplock. “I know what you’re thinking. When were we going to tell you that we had changed addresses?”
“Well, Jason did say that you guys had moved out of the Power Chamber.” Tommy said. “But he didn’t say exactly where you guys would be moving to.”
“Yeah well. We’ve only been here for a few weeks, and are only now settling in.” Lillian said. “Besides, both Zordon and Laocorn agreed that it probably wouldn’t be a good idea to talk with each other so much. Wouldn’t want to give S’Hera the wrong idea you know.”
Tommy looked confused. “Laocorn? Who’s Laocorn?”
“Laocorn Gaudeamas. The teen billionaire and head of the Gaudeamas corporation.” Lillian explained. “He decided to sponsor us and even helped us when Biilly decided that he wanted to try to take us out earlier.”
Tommy was confused. “Wait a minute. You guys are being supported by a billionaire?”
Lillian smiled. “It’s a long story. Come on and I’ll tell it to you with an ice cream cone and a ferry boat ride.” Lillian led Tommy to the ice cream shop and then to the ferry in the dock. It was then that Lillian told Tommy the whole story.
“So you’re telling me that this Laocorn Gaudeamas came to you, asked you to join him, you guys fought, Biilly showed up then he beat Biilly, and now you guys are living in one of his penthouses in San Francisco?” Tommy asked in disbelief.
“Yeah I know it sounds weird to me to.” Lillian said as she took a lick off her vanilla cone. Tommy ordered pistachio walnut. “But that’s what happened.”
Tommy was still curious. “How well do you know this guy?” he asked.
“Mostly what the newspapers say.” Lillian answered. “But I do get a few other things from him as well. It’s likeï¿½he’s trying to make up for something. Something that happened in the past, but he won’t tell us what it is.”
“Any ideas what it could be?” Tommy asked.
“No, but I think it involves his sister who’s dead. I’ve seen him look at the portrait of her in his office a few times. Whatever he’s doing now seems to revolve around her sister’s memory.” Lillian said. “Oh by the way he seems to know who your new Silver Zeo is too by the way.”
Tommy looked at Lillian surprised. “He does?”
“Yeah.” She said. “He’d like you and the Zeos to come to his office around eight. Laocorn said that she’ll be there then.”
Tommy nodded and said thanks. “I’d like to meet this Laocorn Gaudeamas myself.”
“Yeah well he would like to meet you too.” Lillian replied. “He seems very interested in the Power Rangers. But for right nowï¿½”
Tommy smiled as he got Lillian’s hint. Right now was a time for the two of them. And with that Tommy took Lillian in his arms and the two of them watched as they took in the sights and sea air of San Francisco.
The Astro Rangers had found the address to what was perceived to be the Bogard home. It was an old firehouse that had been reconfigured for home use. It wasn’t exactly in what was a ‘good’ neighborhood, but it wasn’t in a terrible one either. Cassie, Ashley, T. J. and Carlos looked up at the house and wondered what to make of it.
“This is where she lives?” Cassie asked not sure what to expect.
“That’s what the address that DECA got said.” T. J. answered. “Shall we knock and see who’s home?”
Ashley sighed as she took a moment to compose herself, then walked up to the door and knocked. For a minute or two no one answered. “I don’t think anyone’s home.” Carlos said. Just then the door opened and a silver haired man looked at the four teenagers and at Ashley.
“Alison what are you doing home so soon?” Derik Bogard asked. “And when did you decide to bring friends over?” Derik then looked at Ashley again and realized, “You’re not Alison.”
“No I’m Ashley.” She said. “But my friends and I are looking for Alison. Can we come in?”
Derik took a moment but then said, “Come on in. I’ll put on some tea.” The four Astro Rangers accepted Derik’s invitation and entered the Bogard home.
Andros and Sabrina had come to the address they had chosen to go to. The house seemed simple enough, and actually looked pretty impressive. “Do you think she’s here?” Sabrina asked.
“Only one way to find out.” Andros said looking at the door. He looked around the door but couldn’t find what he was looking for. “I don’t see any intercom do you?”
Sabrina just rolled her eyes and pushed the doorbell button, and then coming to Andros’s side she said, “Intercoms aren’t regular conveniences as they are on KO-35.” Andros blushed as he remembered how primitive Earth humans are when the door opened a woman with brown hair stood in the doorway. She looked over the two Rangers wondering what to make of them. ~ Especially the one with the hair. ~ she thought.
“Hello.” Lisa Bridges said as she appeared in the doorway. “What can I do for you?”
Andros looked at Lisa and asked, “We’re looking for someone. Have you by chance seen anyone wearing Silver around have you?”
Lisa then rolled her eyes and asked sarcastically. “What are you members of my daughter’s fan club or something?”
Sabrina looked up as if Lisa had said a very important clue. “Your daughter?”
“Yeah, my daughter Cassidy. She’s been acting really strange with her big silver wardrobe kick. Then she takes self-defense classes without remembering where she took them. Something’s really going on with her.”
“Do you by chance know what she could be doing right now?” Andros asked.
Lisa thought for a minute. “She could be with her father right now. To be honest I don’t know why I allow her to go to that deathtrap my ex-husband lives in.”
“Could you perhaps give us the address?” Andros asked. Lisa however began to get real protective however.
“You know I didn’t catch your names. Could you tell me what they are so I can tell Cassidy that you stopped by?” Sabrina then stepped forward acting innocent and said “I’m sorry your daughter wouldn’t know us, but we are so taken in by her clothing lately we just had to meet her.” After nudging Andros in the ribs Andros suddenly got the idea and added “Yeah. We just admire her from afar, and want to get to know her better.”
Lisa thought a little bit about what Andros and Sabrina were saying. There was something about them, but she couldn’t put her finger on what it was. But she didn’t get the impression that there was anything dangerous about them. They may have been a little weird but they seemed okay.
“Okay, here’s my ex-husband’s address. You can meet her there.” Lisa wrote down Nash’s address on a slip of paper and handed it to Andros and Sabrina. After thanking her both Rangers left Lisa’s and walked down the street, presumably to meet Cassidy.
Lisa watched as Andros and Sabrina walked away. “There go a pair of weird kids. The one with the hair especially.”
Andros and Sabrina continued to walk as they read the address. “Well I guess this confirms it. Our Silver Zeo Ranger seems to be at the address Zhane is heading to.”
“Shall we get over there?” Sabrina asked with amusement. Andros rolled his eyes in sarcasm as both headed for Nash Bridges’s apartment. An hour later they had to stop and ask for directions.
“Okay. You mind if we all drive down to Angel Grove and beat the hell out of this bastard of a ‘doctor’?” Joe asked everyone in the van as it rolled down Rose St. He, Andy and Mai had all gotten finished reading through what Mary had found in her investigation.
Needless to say none were very happy.
“While I actually enjoy that thought the answer is no.” Terry said to them looked at them from the front seat where he was with Mary who then smiled, “Sides, the sheer look of shock on his face when we confront him and then I arrest the asshole for this and his other felonies will be more gratifying and won’t get any of you into trouble.”
“I still can’t believe a doctor would actually do something like that.” Mai replied.
“At least we know Geese wasn’t part of that incident in Bogard family history.” Andy replied. Terry nodded. Geese Howard was an evil bastard with very few morals if any at all. However even he wasn’t evil enough to go into baby abduction/auctioning.
“So where to now? Grandfather’s?” Andy asked.
“It’s getting late now and you know Alison.” Terry responded. Andy nodded knowing that their young cousin enjoyed fighting in underground fighting rinks. Everyone in the van had fought at the very least once in one. “There’s a fighting rink downtown. I was there once before a few years back.”
“Well give me the directions and we’ll be there.” Mary said.
Laocorn sat in his office in thought. He looked up at Sulia’s portrait and breathed. It was currently 7: 00. He had an hour left before Cassidy would arrive.
However he had a feeling that he would be seeing the Zeo Rangers sooner than the original time. The Outsiders as well.
~And Cassidy is not here yet… ~ Laocorn thought to himself. Much had happened to this city since the Cylon attack and his brief meeting with Alison Bogard brought him back to something Zordon had told him. He had only met the Eltarian once and that was directly following the battle with the Psycho Rangers nearly a month ago. As he stood in the Power Chamber and gained an understanding with Zordon, the sage told him that the longer he kept his secrets, the harder they are to tell.
~Alison Bogard may very well tell Cassidy but she doesn’t know the Rangers yet… however I have no doubt that the Rani might try something of her own. Or even the force I remember seeing when I had the completed Armor of Mars. ~
Laocorn shuttered at that thought. Even now he remembered how he felt. He may have felt like a God with all that power at his command… but his soul felt trapped and in pain. He thought he was in Heaven and Hell. As he was in that place he swore he saw a being that put whatever power he had gained to shame and felt enslaved to that power.
~If it wasn’t for Terry Bogard and Sulia… I still would be in that being’s power. ~ Laocorn thought. And that was yet another reason he was on edge in a way. As he fought the Cylons days ago, he felt a similar presence to them. The presence was the being whose name Laocorn didn’t even know for sure.
~But his power is dark enough to make me think he is Satan himself. ~ Laocorn thought. And if he was here, he knew his secret. And he would waste no chance to undermine what efforts Laocorn had made to redeem himself for his past actions.
Laocorn came to a decision. “I’ll just have to repeat it for Cassidy later. Every moment counts if I am right.”
He then picked up the phone and called the Outsiders at their home.
“Lillian. Call your boyfriend and contact the rest of your team. There’s been a change in plans. I need you all to see me now.” Laocorn said.
“Laocorn… what’s wrong? And what about Zeo Silver?”
“Cassidy will be here on time at eight like I said…” Laocorn then paused. “However… if you are going to be backed me… you should know my past. The good… and the bad.”
Laocorn then hanged up the phone leaving a wondering Lillian on the other end.
At the Outsider’s penthouse Lillian slowly hung up the phone as Tommy was getting the grand tour of the penthouse from Jamie and Christina. Tommy was amazed to say the least. “Wow I can’t believe this place.” He said. “You guys sure have come up in the world.”
“Thanks Tommy. We’re proud of it.” Jamie said. She then noticed Lillian standing by the phone looking concerned. “Lil, what’s up?”
Lillian looked up at Tommy, Jamie and Christina. “Tommy, you’d better call the Zeo Rangers. Jamie, get a hold of Tyler. Tell him and everyone else to meet us at Laocorn’s office.”
Tommy looked curious and concerned. “Why Lil? What’s up?”
“Laocorn wants to meet you.” She said to Tommy. Turning her gaze to Jamie and Christina she then added “And he’s got something to say to us too.” Soon Tommy and Jamie got on their respective communicators and called in everyone on their respective teams.
“This is Samantha I read you.” The voice on Tommy’s communicator said. Terry ‘Jinx’ Jones couldn’t resist getting on the line and saying “Hey cousin what’s up?”
Samantha couldn’t help but smile at her cousin’s voice and answered “Not much, just listening to you and wondering what the commotion is.”
Tommy then spoke. “We’ve got a situation. Meet us at the address Terry is about to give you.” Terry quickly disclosed the address of Laocorn’s office to the Zeo Rangers and soon Kat, Samantha, Rocky and Adam made their way to Laocorn’s office to see what he wanted.
Zhane had made it to the condemned apartment that was supposedly his destination. He however noticed that the place was still in use due to the city notices and the elevator that was before him.
~Does Silver Zeo live here? In this run down place~ Zhane thought. ~ I guess it’s my duty as a Power Ranger to free her from this place of squalor then. ~ Zhane then got into the elevator and pressed the button taking him up to the top floor of the building.
When he had arrived Zhane got out and noticed the hole in the wall, which led him to the living room of the apartment. He noticed some furniture, a pool table and pinball game off to the side as well as a well-furnished kitchen. ~ Wow. Someone must have done some work up here. This place seems almost liveable. ~ Zhane continued to look when he heard footsteps approaching and a voice calling out to her grandfather.
“Grandpa is that you?” Cassidy asked coming out of her room. When she saw Zhane she was speechless. She saw his blonde hair, silver shirt and white pants wondering just who the boy before her was. Zhane however had a different assessment of Cassidy as he noticed her long brown hair, her maroon shirt with silver patchings, her silver skirt with silver leggings, and her black penny loafers completing the ensemble. Zhane took one look at Cassidy, and was captivated by her beauty.
~Wow!~ Zhane thought. ~ She’s beautiful!~
Cassidy however looked at Zhane differently especially since he started to give off a silver glow that emanated from his entire body, and she told him so. “Hello. Do you by chance know that you’re glowing.” She said.
“So are you.” Zhane said. And sure enough when Cassidy looked at her reflection in the nearby mirror her body was giving off the same silver glow that Zhane’s was. To say Cassidy was startled would be an understatement.
“Howï¿½how is this happening?” she asked frantically wondering how to make it stop. Zhane came to Cassidy’s side and placed his hands on her shoulders to calm her down.
“It’s okay. It’s okay.” Zhane said coming to her side and calming her down. Their glows seemed to join together when they came into physical contact forming one big glow. “The reason we’re glowing is probably because we’re both Silver Rangers.” Zhane answered. “Silver powers are more connected to each other than any other Ranger powers. Hence when we come together, weï¿½glow.”
“Yeah well how do I turn it off?” Cassidy asked. “Or do I spend my whole life lit up like a fifty watt bulb for the rest of my life?”
“Just concentrate. Think of the glow fading. Like a light you gradually turn off.” Cassidy tried to do what Zhane said and she closed her eyes imagining the glow around her dimming. She continued to picture the light dimmingï¿½dimmingï¿½dimmingï¿½until it was gone from all around her. She opened her eyes and saw that the glow around Zhane was gone. And looking down at her hands Cassidy could tell that her own glow was dissipated as well. Another look in the mirror also provided proof that the glow was out for her.
“Sorry about the light show.” Zhane said. “There aren’t many Silver Rangers out in the universe. The power tends to make a big deal when one meets another.”
“I guess it does, but then I’m kind of new at this.” Cassidy then stared at Zhane and asked “So are you going to tell me your name? Or does ‘Hey You’ work for you?”
Zhane then realized that he needed to introduce himself, so he quickly offered his hand to her. “Zhane Ki’tain.” Zhane said stretching his hand out.
Cassidy then took the hand and introduced herself. “Cassidy Bridges.” She then asked “So what brings you here to my father’s apartment, where you would be very grateful that he’s not right here now because he knows where his gun is at.”
Zhane smiled lopsidedly and said “Wellï¿½it’s becauseï¿½” Zhane then went into his story about how he was in a cryotube for two years when a source of Silver energy suddenly healed and revived him. Cassidy seemed interested but looked at her watch as it had shown her running late for her meeting at Gaudeamas Corp.
That however didn’t stop Zhane from going after her as she made her way down the elevator. Zhane got on too as he continued to speak about himself. Cassidy couldn’t help but roll her eyes in amusement but was a little bit stunned when he said that he was from KO-35. “You’re from another planet?” she asked.
“Yeah. Earth isn’t the only place where humans live.” Zhane said as the elevator reached the bottom. Just as a vortex appeared that had seven Cylons walk through. One of them was the gold armored Vulpa.
“Surrender humans.” Vulpa said in his mechanical monotone voices.
“Fat chance tinheads!” Cassidy said as she took up a fighting stance. Zhane also did the same and stood ready to attack. When the Cylons raised their blasters the two Silver Rangers took that as their chance to move in.
They managed to kick the blasters out of their hands and soon kicked the Cylons back causing them to overbalance and fall. The Centurions were not built for agility and Cassidy and Zhane knew that. As Cassidy knocked back three Cylons Zhane had knocked back four. Yet he did not see the vortex open behind him, or who had come through it. And when Cassidy turned around she knew she had a problem.
“Don’t use your powers!” Circuit Breaker said. “Or blondie gets it!” Cassidy turned to notice Vulpa and another Cylon with blasters to Zhane’s head. One bad move and they wouldn’t hesitate to fire. Realizing she had no other choice Cassidy raised her arms in surrender.
Circuit Breaker then crossed over to where Cassidy stood wondering what to make of the woman before her.
“So you’re my sister’s replacement. I’m not very impressed, especially when you have to use my sister’s fighting style in order to win your battles.” It was then at close up ranger that Cassidy was able to recognize who the assailant was.
“Josie Belle?” she asked which caused Circuit Breaker to raise her eyebrows. ~ How did she hear of me? I don’t think this girl watches the news much. ~
“Your sister’s picture. It was on her zord.” Cassidy then explained. Josie then looked at Cassidy dead in the eye and said “Don’t you meanMy zord?”
Cassidy looked confused as to what Josie was getting at when she said “I was supposed to get those powers. Not you. Neither was Jessie. I was! But instead Jessie got them and the Rangers killed her. Then you got them!”
“What do you mean the Rangers killed her. They didn’t kill her some sickoï¿½” Zhane never got to finish his sentence for Circuit Breaker kicked him in the family jewels which shut him up right quick.
“You’ll speak when I say you can speak. And right now I don’t wish you to.” Turning to Cassidy Circuit Breaker then said “You will come with me now!”
“Gee I’d like toï¿½but I have to be somewhere. So if you can send me your addressï¿½” Circuit Breaker then back handed slapped Cassidy across her face then glared at her.
“You will come with me now! Or your boyfriend gets it!” Cassidy looked at the two Cylons holding Zhane and she knew there was no real choice. She surrendered and Circuit Breaker led her and Zhane through the transwarp portal with the Cylons in escort. The vortex then closed behind them with all traces of life inside gone. Soon the hallway was empty, but not for long.
Nick Bridges had come home to notice the Cylons in the hallway, but since they were deactivated he didn’t worry too much. “Probably just putting them somewhere waiting for street cleaners to get to. I’ll call Nash and have him pick these things up.” He said as he then went upstairs and went to the phone where Cassidy’s note sat, before Circuit Breaker took her and Zhane away. He looked at the note as it said that Cassidy had gone to the Gaudeamas building to settle some business.
“Thanks for the note Cassidy I’ll make sure Nash gets it.” Nick said as he then turned on the T. V. Horse races were on, and if his real estate deal went through there may be a business venture Nick would want to be part of. He then called his daughter Stacy and asked her “Is the paperwork done yet?”
“Yes dad.” Stacy Bridges said on the other line. Clearly from the tone of her voice Stacy was more than a little annoyed about what Nick was looking to do. But Nick’s mind was set.
“I’ll look forward to the paperwork when you get here.” Nick said as he went back to watching the horse races.
Alison was getting close to the rink. She was thinking of who she was going to end up fighting tonight and beating when she then stopped feeling someone watching. ~ Please don’t tell me this is what I am thinking. ~
She groaned as she saw at least ten different guys come out of shadows from the alley. She recognized them from the rink. “What do you want?”
“Well if it ain’t the big shot hero the reporters are talking about on the ten o’clock news.” One of them sneered. “You’re a good fighter, but you’ve been wrecking our profits ever since you came into the rink twelve days ago.”
“I don’t believe this. You’re blaming me for all of you losing money and you’re jealous of me.” Alison said incredulously.
“Nah. Its just that who ever ends up killing you is going to get the biggest rep in the rink.” The leader of this mob said as he snapped his fingers. Alison turned around and saw ten more guys behind her.
~Shit! They got me surrounded… ~ Her eyes narrowed as she saw some of them had guns.
~Oh this is damn sure not good. ~ Alison thought to herself as she looked at the fighters, or rather cowards, that wanted to gun her down. All for a rep they would have never really even earned. “I’ll say this… you’re not even real street fighters if you’re having to resort to guns and gang up tactics.”
“Ha! Don’t you know in this world it’s the killers with the smallest conscience that win?” the leader laughed as he pulled out a Cylon blaster. “Any final words?”
“Yeah. Don’t you know it’s not nice to gang up 20 to 1 on any one?”
Alison froze in shock as she heard that voice. ~ I don’t believe it!~
“Huh?” The leader turned around only to hear…
“BURN KNUCKLE!!!” Terry Bogard struck the man in the chest sending him flying and he dropped his gun on the ground.
“TERRY?!” Alison shouted.
“Nice to see you too cousin.” Terry smiled.
“Wait! That’s THE Terry Bogard!” one of the rink fighters said.
“Alright! Now we can get be legends for killing Terry Bogard!” another said.
“ZAN EI KEN!!!”
The thug turned around just in time to see Andy Bogard’s extended elbow slammed into his face and sent him reeling forward. He slammed into a nearby building and then sagged down in defeat.
“Don’t let your guard down Alison.” Andy smiled looking at Alison
“Andy! You’re here too?!” Alison said still in shock.
“Three Bogards!” another rink fighter said.
“Who cares? This is going to be big for us!” his friend said.
“Yeah. Getting your asses thrashed by yours truly.” The two thugs turned to see Joe flying at them. “TIGER KICK!!!” the impact made by the kick send the two thugs into the wall. He then flashed a smile at Alison. “Well not bad if I do say so myself.”
Alison smirked a bit. “Still a showboat aren’t you Joe?”
“Guys.” Andy said getting Alison, Joe and Terry’s attention. The men that had Cylon blasters now had them trained on them.
“Forget fighting. I just want to waste them.” One of the thugs said.
“KA CHO SEN!!!”
Seven fans were shot at the seven men that had Cylon blasters and when the fans hit them it was with so much force that their wrists had either been broken or were almost broken by the impact. The blasters dropped to the ground as they cried out in pain.
“Oh was that too much for you. I’m so sorry.” Mai laughed as he held a fan in front of her face.
“I see you haven’t changed for fighting.” Alison said.
“Oh come on Alison. I’ve got enough room in these clothes to handle slobs like these.” Mai replied.
“How about we finish moping up these guys first and then talk?” Andy said.
Alison cracked her knuckles. “That’s fine with me. There’s five of us and there’s sixteen of them leftstanding. Makes about three each for us all.”
“I’m not going to get humiliated like this! Let’s get em guys!” one of the sixteen said.
Mai sighed. “Don’t they know when it’s time to run away?”
“Guys like this… nope.” Terry replied.
It was pretty much an easy fight for the Bogards and Joe as the so called fighters from the rink, how ever tough they may be in their own home, were nowhere near the league or caliber of fighters like the Lonely Wolves.
“CRACK SHOT!” Terry and Alison said in unison taking out two rink fighters. Soon there were only two left.
“Forget it! I’m not going to jail! Let’s run!” they said.
They didn’t get further than a block until Mary’s van blocked their way. She had the back of the car facing them. In side she pressed a button. “Sick’em Anton!” she smirked.
“Anton?” they muttered.
The back doors opened and a Doberman came out of the car and pounced one of them. “AH! Get it off! Get it off me!” he cried. The other thug walking backwards, bumping into Mary who then grabbed him from behind.
“BACKDROP REAL!!!” she shouted giving the thug a modified German Suplex and sent him crashing into the ground. Mary then looked down at the unconscious thug. “Goodnight chump.” She then went over to her dog and then scratched behind his ears as she handcuffed the fighter she was on top of. “Good boy.” Anton barked in approval. Mary looked at the others. “Hey could you gather all those blasters and those losers up and get the rope from the back. We’ll make a stop at the SFPD before heading over to your cousin’s home.”
“Right I’ll help.” Joe said going over to Mary. Alison just looked at her cousins. “Well as happy as I am to see you all here… just what ARE you doing here anyway? And ALL of you I might add? I mean only on Christmas and KOF do I get to see you all together.”
Terry looked at Alison seriously and caringly. Alison picked up on it. “Terry… what’s wrong?”
“Nothing’s wrong unless you feel its wrong.” Terry replied. Alison blinked not understanding. Terry then said. “I had Mary look for your birth family since last year… she’s found them.”
For probably the first time in her life Alison just passed out.
“Considering all of what just happened in the last five minutes. I’m not surprised she just did that.” Andy said.
Terry then picked up Alison and put her into the van. “She’ll be back up in a few minutes. Right now let’s give Joe hand in the clean up.”
Andy and Mai nodded as they started to pick up the Cylon Blasters and the thugs.
At the S. I. U. station, Nash was finishing some reports when Evan Cortez came in. “What’s up Evan?”
“Nash. It’s Mary Ryan. She’s here in the station. And she’s got something for you.” Evan said.
Nash wondered what would happen on this occasion. Whenever Blue Mary was in town, as she was called by others, her quarry were anything but ordinary criminals. The private investigator was also a law enforcement officer and had been employed by several agencies across the world. Interpol being on the top of the list.
When he got into the lobby he stopped in shock as he saw Mary with a bag of Cylon blasters and a large mess of men all tied up or handcuffed who had been brought in by two young blonde haired men.
“Hello Inspector. You usually are the pointman in S. I. U and I figured you would want these in your possession instead of the criminals on the street.” Mary replied giving Nash the blaster bag.
The blonde without a cap just said. “We’re dropping them off to be processed. The charge is trying to kill our cousin and then trying to kill me, my brother, my wife and my best friend.”
Nash then asked, “And you are…?”
The one with the cap then said. “Terry Bogard. That’s my younger brother Andy and our cousin happens to be named Alison. By the way, she says nice things about you Inspector.”
Nash wasn’t sure what to say when Terry then said, “Well we have to go now. If you need us for anything call our Grandfather’s home. We’ll be there while we are in town. Nice to meet you.”
With that the Bogard Brothers and Blue Mary left the Rotunda with Nash looking at the mostly unconscious thugs and the blasters in his hands. Joe came over to him. “What’s up Nashman?”
“These days Joe… I really don’t know.” Nash shook his head as he then ordered for the tied up men to be processed then moved to a new location.
The S. I. U. was being moved to a new location. A ferry boat on the Hyde Street Pier.
It was just around 8: 00 when Panni opened the doors and the Outsiders came into Laocorn’s office along with Zeo Team I. Laocorn was standing up looking at Sulia’s portrait.
“Panni. Leave and close the door.” Laocorn said.
Panni blinked. “My Lord?”
“Please.” Laocorn added with a silent plea. “When our last guest arrives allow her to come in.”
Panni just nodded as she then did as she was asked. Tommy looked at Laocorn. “‘My Lord’? What do you do? Order your employees to call you that?”
“Tommy!” Lillian shot.
“No Lillian. It’s alright.” Laocorn replied as he then faced Tommy. “I tell her to stop calling me that and even though she tries she still calls me that title half the time. I am not any ones master.” Laocorn then lowered his head a bit in sighing before looking at them all.
“All right we’re here.” Rocky said. “Why are we here?”
“Patience Mr. DeSantos. We’re awaiting the arrival of one other.” The Zeos didn’t wonder for too long what Laocorn meant by that.
“Silver Zeo? Is she coming here?” Kat asked.
“Yes Miss Hillard. Silver Zeo should be arriving soon.” Laocorn said. He then looked at his clock on his desk, which said 8: 05. Cassidy was running late.
“Panni. Has our last guest arrived?” Laocorn asked in the intercom.
“No my lord she hasn’t.” Panni answered back. “Shall I call her home?”
“Please do. She should be at her father’s tonight.” Laocorn answered. After breaking contact Tyler asked. “Is something wrong?”
“There might be.” Laocorn said. “I’ve know Silver Zeo to be very punctual when it comes to important things. It’s not like her to be this late.” They continued to wait ten minutes when Panni called again.
“My lord. I have gotten in touch with Silver Zeo’s home. I have contacted her grandfather.” Laocorn then asked, “Is she there?”
“No.” she said. “He said that she left a note saying that she was leaving for an errand and she left it an hour ago.” Laocorn knew of Nick Bridges and his problems with Alzheimer’s disease. “Is he sure Panni?” he asked.
“Positive.” Panni said. “He said that he may get fuzzy in the head sometimes but usually when someone leaves a note then it’s easy to remember.
Laocorn smiled. Like everyone else, he admired Nick Bridges’s sense of humor despite his condition. “Tell him that I appreciate his help.” Panni acknowledged Laocorn’s comment and broke off the intercom. He then turned to the Outsiders and Zeo Team I and faced them.
“We may have a problem after all.” Laocorn said. “Something may have just happened to Silver Zeo.”
Everyone seemed to go flush upon hearing this. “What happened?” Rocky asked.
“I don’t know.” He said as he then took a pad off his desk. He then faced Tommy and put in his hands a piece of paper. “On this sheet of paper is the name, home address and phone number of your Silver Zeo Ranger.”
Tommy looked at the name in his hand. “Cassidy Bridges?” he said aloud.
This seemed to spark a memory in Kat and Samantha. “Didn’t we meet someone named ‘Cassidy’ a few days ago?” Kat asked.
“Yeah.” Samantha answered. “She was on a shopping spree with her stepmum. Now that I think about it she did have a lot of silver clothes in her bag. We should have known right there.”
“Don’t worry about it.” Tommy said. “Right now she could be in trouble. We got to do something about it now. Anyone want to check out her place?” There wasn’t a ‘no’ answer in the room.
Soon Zeo Team I and the Outsiders left Laocorn’s office. Panni then entered and asked, “Did you tell them?”
“No Panni.” Laocorn said. “I’m afraid the truth is something I can only tell once. I’ll tell it when Cassidy is found. In the meantime I’d like you to bring in Lyla.”
Panni looked confused. “What for lord?”
“There’s someone else who should be present.” Laocorn said. “Alison Bogard.”
At the Bogard firehouse Derik was putting on tea for his four guests. All the while Derik couldn’t help but stare at Ashley.
“Uhhh sir. I know I look so much like your granddaughter, but could you please not stare so much?” Ashley asked modestly. Derik couldn’t help but smile.
“I’m sorry.” Derik said. “It’s just that you look so much like Alison, yet the way you asked your request shows that you two are miles apart when it comes to personality.”
“Oh? What’s Alison like?” Carlos asked.
“What’s Alison like?” Derik thought for a while as he tried to imagine what would be the best answer to that question. “Alison is basically the ultimate free spirit. She’s wild, carefree, and yet she’s also not afraid to act on her emotions.”
“A wildchild?” T. J. asked.
Derik chuckled at T. J. ‘s description. “Yes Mr. Andrews. Alison is a wildchild. Whenever she walks into a room she’s bound to leave an impression for anyone watching. Whether in class or the fighting rinks.”
“Fighting rinks?” Cassie then asked.
“Yes. She had learned some secrets of the Hakkyokusaiken school of fighting from her cousin Terry. She basically idolizes him, to the point that she emulates him from the jean jacket to the ball cap. Even though she is far more impulsive than Terry.” Derik explained. Ashley took in everything being said, but one thing still remained, and Ashley needed to know this.
“Mr. Bogard, Where did Alison come from?”
Derik sighed as he made ready to tell Ashley the story. “My son Ira and his wife Lia had come across a black market auction where a baby was being sold to unsavory characters.”
Everyone was stunned. No one could believe that a person would be so low as to sell a baby. “That baby. Was it Alison?” Cassie asked.
“Yes Missï¿½Chan is it?” Cassie nodded at Derik’s assessment. “They later broke up the auction and took the baby to the local orphanage where it would be hoped that someone would come for her. Unfortunately, no one who could give her a loving home did so. Any who did were part of the auction that Ira and Lia had broken up, and my son and his wife sent them packing.”
“What about Alison?” T. J. asked. “Did Ira and Lia adopt her or something?”
“Yes they did.” Derik answered. “They found they couldn’t get the child out of their mind and decided they wanted to adopt her. For seven years they brought Alison up as their own.”
“Seven years?” Carlos asked.
Derik sighed before he answered this one. “When Alison was seven, her parents were killed in a fire. Fire inspector said it was arson, but the arsonist was never found. Since then I’ve raised Alison as my own daughter, just as Ira and Lia have done.” Derik closed his eyes as he remembered the day Alison lost her parents, and when Derik lost his son.
Both Derik and Alison watched as her parents’ house went up in flames. She had just come back from visiting a friend and she had come home to a flaming house. Alison wanted to run into the fire screaming “MOM!!! DAD!!!” But the hands of Derik Bogard held her back. She found herself staring in shock at the burning house as she and Derik watched. The looks of loss in their eyes.
Alison was then awarded to Derik for custody. Her cousins Terry, Andy, and Ira’s brother Jeff showed their support to her as she went through that difficult time. Alison quickly took a shine to Terry, but her personality seemed more like Andy’s than anyone else’s. And Jeff Bogard’s sensei, Master Tung Fu Rue, even confirmed this for him.
“Since then Alison and I have lived in San Francisco. We’ve been here ever since.” After Derik finished his story the Astro Rangers looked at each other completely speechless. Ashley had a real far away look in her eyes. “Ash? Are you okay?” Cassie asked her friend.
Ashley turned to her friends wide eyed. “I’m not sure Cassie. But if what this guy says is true…” Ashley turned to look at Derik before continuing. “Then this ‘Alison Bogard’ could very well be my long lost twin sister.”
Meanwhile Terry, Andy, Joe, Mai and Mary had parked the van and were all escorting Alison back to the firehouse as Alison tried to make sense of the file that Mary presented to her.
Her parents’ names were Gerald and Alyssa Hammond. She was one of two daughters that were born in Angel Grove, with the other daughter being her own twin sister Ashley. Gerald worked for a racing garage in Angel Grove while Alyssa was a big community activist helping to do all she could to make sure the city of Angel Grove was a safe place for families all over the community.
Her sister Ashley was a cheerleader for the Angel Grove sports team. Her show of school spirit, and charisma among the others granted her the position of head cheerleader at Angel Grove High. While cheerleading wasn’t something Alison was too interested in, she found the idea of having a sister who was a cheerleader kind of cool. Especially since she was from a family she never knew of until now.
Alison wondered why she was the one taken from her parents, even though the file said that Dr. Jacobs needed a baby to sell, and when she and Ashley were born then Jacobs had his opportunity.
“This is so unbelievable.” Alison muttered.
“And you’ve said that for the sixth time.” Joe said. Alison looked at him. “Oh come on here Joe. Its not exactly as if you are in the same situation as I have been for my life.” She then looked at her cousins. “But no matter, I was raised a Bogard and I am still a Bogard. Getting to know my birth family is something to enjoy.”
“You’re always going to be family to us Alison.” Terry smiled as put his hands through her hair. “Terry stop that!” Alison fumed until Terry put into her face another hat just like his only the color was green.
“Didn’t see you with your favorite hat on TV. Figured you needed a new one.” Terry smiled and then Alison hugged him. “You’re the best Terry!”
“Wonder how Grandfather is going to take the news?” Andy said.
“I’m sure he’ll take it gracefully.” Terry said as Alison opened the door.
“Grandpa I’m…” Alison then stopped as she and the others saw in the Bogard home Cassie, TJ, Carlos… and Ashley. Alison and Ashley just let their jaws drop in unison.
Terry, Mai, Andy and Joe were also stunned but it was Joe that said, “Well how about that. Here we are coming here to tell your Grandfather the news and get in touch with your family when instead they come to us. Well one of them anyway.” Mai then knocked him over the head with her fan.
“Do the words private/special moment seem to be lost to you Joe!” Mai shot. Joe was going to say something but then thought better of it considering the situation. He didn’t think he had said something insulting. Least he hoped he hadn’t.
Ashley and Alison continued to stare at each other until Ashley broke the silence and said “Alison?”
Alison looked on equally stunned and asked, “Are you my sister?”
No words needed to be said, so they said none. Both girls knew the truth and acted upon it the only way sisters could. At the exact same second both girls stepped forward and embraced in a sisterly hug and they stood that way for many minutes. They broke the hug soon after and soon both girls gave their names.
Alison smiled as she heard the name. “Hammond. Sounds nice.”
“It’s okay.” Ashley said then she turned and looked at the other Astro Rangers who continued to stare, as well as Alison’s relatives who looked on.
“Do you mind?” Alison asked. “I’m just meeting my sister here.”
“Oh of course.” Joe said. “Come on let’s go upstairs.” Everyone then adjourned to the dining room upstairs leaving Ashley and Alison alone to catch up. When they got upstairs everyone made themselves at home, except Terry who went over to Cassie once he saw her.
“So what are you doing here Cassie?” Terry asked Cassie as they were off to the side.
“Wh… what do you mean?” Cassie asked wondering if Terry was thinking something was off.
“There’s something different about you, and I’m not talking about the aura that is coming off from being of Kusanagi blood.” Terry said. Considering the places he had gone around the world, he had a couple of guesses.
And when he spotted her Astro Morpher Terry knew what it was.
“What?” Cassie asked.
Terry simply smiled as he spoke out loud. “So how long have you been a Power Ranger Cassie?”
Cassie looked stunned when Terry mentioned the term ‘Power Ranger’ and breathed. “How did you know?”
“Well let’s say I happen to have the honor of meeting their mentor. By the way is Zordon your mentor or do you have some one else.” Terry asked.
“Someone else.” Cassie responded.
“HOLD IT!” Joe shouted as he eavesdropped. “Terry what the hell is going on! What are you talking about?!”
Terry smiled sheepishly. “Sorry guys… but it’s something I really couldn’t mention.”
“How did you end up meeting Zordon?” Cassie asked.
Terry breathed. “It was back around September of 1994 when I ended up passing through Angel Grove.”
~September 94. that was only a few weeks after Sulia’s death. ~ Andy thought.
September 21, 1994
At Angel Grove docks, Jason Lee-Scott was getting off of work after another day of loading packages for the Angel Grove Packaging system. The supervisor, Mr. Doonesbury, had given Jason his pay for the week when he caught notice of another man on the docks. One Jason had never seen before.
“Mr. Doonesbury, who’s that?” Jason asked pointing to the man wearing the white tanktop, blue jeans and red ball cap.
“Some guy just passing through.” Mr. Doonesbury said. “I think his name isï¿½Bogart or something?”
The red vested young man then stood up and looked at Doonesbury. “Bogard. Terry Bogard. With a ‘d’ at the end. Helps with spelling on the paychecks.”
“Of course. I’ll make sure the name in the file is correct.” Doonesbury then disappeared into his office leaving Jason facing Terry.
“So, you new in town?” Jason asked.
“Yeah.” The man named Terry Bogard said. “Just passing through. I never really stay anywhere for too long.”
“Kinda like a drifter huh.” Jason said.
Terry gave a small grin. “Something like that.”
Jason, feeling like he had seen his face before, took a look over at Terry and noticed his build. “You work out?”
“I happen to practice some martial arts.” Terry said.
Finally it was coming together for Jason as he remember where he had seen his face before. “Terry Bogard… you were on the cover of Black Belt Magazine in July 1992 for winning the United States Freestyle Martial Arts Tournament.”
Terry nodded as if saying guilty as charged. ~ Kind of refreshing someone recognizes me from winning a tournament rather than the man who defeated Geese Howard or Wolfgang Krauser. ~ He then squashed those thoughts as they were not so pleasant. Geese for having been the bane of his entire life and Krauser because he committed suicide rather than accept defeat. ~ Guess this means he hasn’t heard of the King of Fighters tournament though that’s not surprising really. ~ Ever since its conception, which of course was thanks to Geese nearly 14 years ago, the King of Fighters tournament had been held simply in Southtown where Geese had total control over the tournament and publicity as far as to the world at large was kept minimal. Fighters were invited by the Tournament host to participate and it had stayed like that.
Until 1992 when Terry and his brother Andy had reunited at Southtown, ten years after Geese had murdered their father in cold blood and covered it up. Terry and Andy signed up for the King of Fighters tournament as did Andy’s friend Joe Higashi. Though the tournament ended in controversy thanks to Geese’s failed assassination attempt on the Bogard Brothers during their Quarter Final Match, when Terry defeated Geese, people knew who won the tournament. They just knew. In the record books Terry Bogard was marked down as the King of Fighters of 1992.
It was after Terry’s fight with Krauser that the King of Fighters tournament of 1993 had begun. This time the tournament took on a world tour feel and there was a new host whose identity was anonymous the whole time until the end of the tournament and it was revealed to be a man called Karne. Terry was pushed to his limits against Karne but he defeated him. However Karne wouldn’t accept defeat and revealed that he was a cyborg. Then he decided to kill himself rather than be taken prisoner and in the process of killing himself take Terry with him. Terry barely escaped with his life that time. Afterwards he had been made the King of Fighters of 1993.
~Each year KOF is getting more and more publized to the media with each new host of the tournament. ~ Terry said to himself. ~ I have to wonder if that can be considered a good or bad idea?~
However he realized he was losing track and then looked back over at Jason. “So you practice in the Martial Arts then.”
“Yeah. I teach a martial arts class at the Youth Center.” Jason said as he then looked at his watch. “Speaking of which I have to get there. Hope I haven’t missed the bus.”
“I’ll take you there.” Terry said.
Jason blinked. “You would?”
“Yeah. I’d like to see one of your classes.” Terry said.
“I’d be honored. My students might like another Martial Artist to talk with.” Jason said. Terry then went to the parking lot to get his ride and soon he had rolled into the docking area with a red and white motorcycle with sidecar.
Terry then pulled up to Jason on his bike with the sidecar which was empty. “Get in.” Jason did so and the two roared to the Youth Center.
At the Angel Grove Youth Center it was business as usual. Zack was trying to put the moves to Angela who seemed to be very uninterestedï¿½again.
Trini and Billy were doing some practice sparring on the mat, Kimberly was trying to write up an itinerary for the pep rally at school.
And Bulk and Skull were off to the side trying to come up with a new idea on how to find out the Power Ranger’s secret identities. A plan, like all the others was doomed to fail. And like all the others, they let the Rangers know it before they implemented it.
A little black remote controlled car sped up to the table Kimberly was sitting at which got the other’s attention. “What are you two doing now?” Zack asked.
“Ah ha!” Bulk shouted as a genius would say ‘Eureka'”My humble assistant Skull and I have found a way to determine just WHO the Power Rangers really are. This little remote controlled car contains the most powerful sensing equipment in existence.”
“That we could buy at Radio Shack!” Skull added. Bulk slapped him upside the head as if saying ‘You nitwit.’ Then Bulk added, “With this, we shall finally find out who the Power Rangers really are. And when we do, the electric tip in the car will send a shock through them, causing them to cry out, and we will be there with pictures. We’ll be rich. We’ll be heroes.”
They turned the car around using the remote control hoping it would get a reading. However what they got instead was the car turning around towards Bulk and Skull with the electric tip activated, then gunning its engine and charging them until the two bullies were chased out of the youth center. The Rangers couldn’t help but laugh as Bulk and Skull were chased out by their own Radio Shack roadster.
“Does this mean Bulk and Skull are the Power Rangers?” Billy asked.
“I hope not.” Kimberly answered.
And just as Bulk and Skull were being chased out, Jason came in with Terry and as the Rangers saw Jason come in some wondered who Terry was.
“Guys this is Terry Bogard.” Jason said. He about to say more but then Trini interrupted him.
“You wouldn’t happen to be the same Terry Bogard that has won the King of Fighters tournaments of ’92 and ’93.” Trini said.
Terry nodded as if surprised Trini would know. “Guilty as charged.”
Jason, Billy, Kimberly, and Zack wondered what Trini was talking about when she explained. “It’s an elite fighting tournament. My mother went one time. Only the best are asked to apply. The things one does in those tournaments are beyond belief. Even Lord Zedd would be in awe.”
“Lord Zedd?” Terry asked.
“He’s the intergalactic conqueror in these parts.” Jason explained. “The Power Rangers have driven him back a time or two.”
“Power Rangers?” Terry asked.
“The resident super heroes. And the coolest thing Angel Grove has.” Zack said. “Next to my hip hop kido of course.”
“Of course.” Kimberly said with slight sarcasm.
Suddenly, they heard Bulk and Skull crying and they turned to see the Radio Shack roadster continuing to chase them down the streets. All five Rangers couldn’t help but laugh at the hilarity ensuing. Even Terry cracked a grin. “Does this happen to them a lot?”
“Only all the time.” Jason said with a slight smile on his face. He soon ordered some more fruit drinks for his friends and Terry. Then the fun would begin. The martial arts class Jason would be teaching. Terry was looking forward to it but then he turned his eye towards Trini and noticed something about her.
Something powerful. Something buried. And somethingï¿½dark.
And he could swear he felt it before.
Meanwhile on the moon, Lord Zedd was now being shaken.
“What is this? What is this new force of power that I am feeling?” Zedd thought out loud as he started scanning the area of the source of the emanations: Angel Grove.
He looked throughout the entire city, but his search came up empty. Nothing out of the ordinary appeared. All looked the same, but Zedd could swear that he felt something. Something incredible, and something powerful.
“Blast it!” Zedd slammed his hand down on the railing. “This incredible power and I have no idea what is coming from! Is it a new weapon Zordon is developing for the Rangers? I must find out.” He turned around. “Goldar!”
“Yes my Emperor.” Goldar appeared bowing before him.
“Take an army of Putties with you and attack Angel Grove. Attack everything in sight.” Zedd said.
Goldar stared at Zedd. “A blatant attack? My lord that will surely bring out the Rangers!”
“Exactly.” Zedd chuckled. “There is a power in Angel Grove that I can not identify. Who knows if Zordon is creating a weapon capable of replacing the fallen Green Ranger. Drawing out the Rangers will be the easiest way to do so.” Under his mouth grate Zedd smirked. “And while we are at it we shall destroy the Rangers as well.”
“How Master?” Goldar asked.
“Simple. When they attack you and the putties, I shall send down a monster, my strongest creation yet to attack from behind. With the Rangers caught in a pincer they will fall before me and the power I feel shall belong to Lord Zedd!” he then let out his own dark laughter.
Back at the Youth Center, Jason was working with his class. Terry stood in the corner and watched as the students took the sensei’s lead.
Jason started out with some slow moving basic forms so the students could follow his lead. Halfway through the forms Jason ordered the class to stop and maintain their stances. Looking over his students Jason watched to see who were doing the moves right, and who had flaws in their technique. Fortunately none did.
Part of this was because Jason was a great teacher that students really wanted to learn from. Jason brought about a feeling ofï¿½’coolness’ for lack of a better term that made students want to take his class. Not one of them didn’t want to be there.
Jason nodded his approval and told the students to continue their form, which they did. Then getting back to the ready position the students and teacher relaxed. “Okay.” Jason said to the class. “What is the main purpose of the Martial Arts?”
“To promote discipline of the mind and body.” One student, Willy, answered.
“To bring peace to mind body and soul.” Another, Lindsey answered.
“To improve one’s self to the best of one’s ability.” The voice of Terry said from off to the side. Everyone turned to look at Terry, including Jason, and wondered what he had to say. But before Terry could speak further he bowed to Jason and asked if he could address the class. “Permission granted.” Jason said. And Terry then took the floor.
“All of you are beginning a journey in the Martial Arts. But despite all that you may know, there is plenty more that you don’t. There are different styles. Different techniques. Different disciplines. And through it all even if you know all the school has to teach there is plenty more one doesn’t know.” Terry paused for a second then continued.
“I trained in a different form of Martial Art. But even though I had mastered most of the techniques, I found I didn’t master all of them. And even when I learned the last technique, there was still plenty more I didn’t know. Some I learned as time went on, and some I wound up inventing.”
“Inventing?” Willy asked. His scientific mind curious as to what Terry meant.
“There were a few times where I had to use the knowledge I had gained from my studies to create a new technique. I once met an opponent who knew everything there was to know about a fight, and I lost to him. “Terry paused for a moment as he remembered his battle with Wolfgang Krauser before he continued. “I wound up having to make up a new technique in order to defeat him when we met a second time.”
“Can we see some of these techniques?” Trini’s cousin Sylvia asked who was taking the class as well. Terry thought for a moment and smiled a little. “I don’t see why not.”
Taking the ready position Terry then launched into an array of moves that had even Jason amazed. Flawless technique. Grace and ferocity mixed together. It kind of reminded Jason of a wolf. ~ A wolf. Now why does that seem fitting somehow?~ he mentally asked himself.
Terry then finished and turned the class back to Jason. Jason saw the student’s eyes and were showing the same amazement Jason was feeling. He decided to end the class early and the students went over to the games section of the Youth Center while Jason went over to where Terry was standing.
“That was a great demonstration Terry.” Jason said amazed as he and Terry went over to a table to rest after the class had ended.
Terry smiled as he drank some water. He had gone through some simple moves from the Hakkyokusaiken school but nothing that involved ki what so ever. ~ I don’t want people to start getting the wrong ideas and start trying to duplicate what I do. Not everyone can use ki and I wouldn’t want someone to get hurt trying to use something they have no power over. ~
“Where did you learn those techniques?” Trini asked. Terry looked up surprised as if it somehow felt odd that Trini would be asking that question.
“Special school. Deals with a style long since forgotten.” Terry explained. “Do you take karate?”
“I tend to focus on the Mantis style.” Trini said. “I find the beauty and grace that comes with the execution of the style relaxes me.” Terry then nodded as if impressed and somehow feeling relieved that Trini was taking the path of the Mantis instead of a darker one. And for some reason he couldn’t figure out why.
“And the rest of you?” Terry asked.
“I’ve only started a year or so ago.” Billy said. “I’m already at Orange belt.”
“I’m more a gymnast than anything.” Kimberly explained. “But Jase has helped me out from time to time.”
“I’ve invented my own style. Hip hop kido.” Zack said smoothly. He was about ready to get up and do a demonstration when all of a sudden a six toned beep came from their wrist watches.
“Sorry man we got to go.” Zack said.
“Hope to catch you later Terry.” Jason said as he, Zack, Billy, Trini and Kimberly left.
~All of them with the same wrist pager… huh. ~ Terry mused.
The Rangers ducked into the hallway and soon activated their communicators. “We read you Zordon, ” Jason said once they were clear.
“Goldar and an unusually high number of putties have appeared and they are attacking the city and its people.” Zordon spoke.
“It never ends with Zedd. He always finds away to stoop one more level lower.” Jason growled. “Whereabouts?”
“They seem to be attacking the shopping district. Morph and Alpha will teleport you there.” After signing off Jason gave the famous call “IT’S MORPHIN TIME!”
And soon the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers made their way to the battle site where Goldar and his Putties began their attack.
Zedd watched on as his putties were in place and attacking as was Goldar. ~ And here come the Power Rangers on cue. ~ he smirked. He then raised his staff as had been charging it for some time now to make sure his newest monster was stronger than before and he knew the perfect choice. ~ How appropriate it is a hell hound. ~ “Arise Cerberus Hound and destroy the Power Rangers!” his lightning zapped on Earth a book of Greek Myth and the picture of the Guard Dog of Hell, Cerberus, came to life as one of Zedd’s monsters.
Terry had long since left the Youth Center and made his way down the street when he was almost run down by a mad pedestrian who looked like she was trying to get away from something. Soon he saw others following the same lead.
“What the heck?” Terry muttered as he saw people running through the streets already in a panic. All he was about to do was go to a restaurant to go have dinner and then head back over to the hotel he was at for the night when suddenly people were running in the streets in a panic.
“What’s wrong with these people?” Terry wondered as he looked around.
He got his answer when he saw Zedd’s Putties harassing and attacking the citizens of the city.
Terry simply just stared in disbelief. “… you have got to be kidding me.”
Two of Zedd’s putties then charged at Terry, flailing their arms around thinking he would be easy to scare.
They were wrong.
“I don’t know where you rejects from a Halloween party came from but right now you are causing these people harm. Now leave.” Terry said.
In response the Putties then attacked Terry.
It was a mistake as Terry was more than able to easily dodge their blows. “Okay. Enough is enough.” Terry then decided it was time to start fighting back as he then landed a right hook to one of their jaws and then swept the other off his feet and they just laid there. Terry was about to leave them there but then noticed they were ready as he rolled to the side in time to avoid their jumping lunging attack.
~Great. I got shades of the masked men all over again. ~ Terry shook his head but he now he was mad because he brought up a reference to a very personal an emotional matter to him.
The putties had now become Terry’s punching bags.
Terry then landed a kick squarely onto the Z of a puttie and to his surprise it broke apart. ~ They aren’t even human. ~ He grinned. ~ Well that makes things a lot more easier now doesn’t it. ~
Terry then saw dozens of putties then heading his way going after other citizens not even knowing or caring about him.
The look on Terry’s face was that of a hungry wolf. Not only would this take off some of his stress… it was going to be fun.
And of course it was, for Terry.
For not one of the citizens was harmed, and the putties broke apart when terry used his more simpler techniques to hit the Z’s. The citizens could not contain their gratitude for Terry’s efforts.
“Don’t worry about thanking me. Just get someplace safe.” Terry told the citizens. They quickly obeyed and made their way to the Youth Center, which was a designated monster shelter.
Terry however went the other way to see who else was being attacked. And by what.
The battle between the Rangers and Zedd’s forces was starting to turn in evil’s direction. The putties were easy enough to beat, but with the added power of the Cerberus Hound the advantage clearly went to Zedd’s forces.
“It’s over Rangers. You are no match for me!” Cerberus Hound boasted as he got a running charge towards the Rangers and swiped at them with his claws at a blazing speed. The Rangers were all knocked down and Cerberus Hound just stood tall.
“Now let’s see.” The first head said in thought. “How do we do this?”
“How about we use the Cerberus blade and slice them open?” Head 3 said. “I love gross outs.”
“No. Vaporize them with our power skrills.” Head 2 said making reference to the weapons on their wrists.
“We could always beat them into submission.” Head 1 said.
“Beat them into submission?” Head 3 was in total disbelief. “Who died and made you leader?”
“Well I am Head 1.” Head 1 answered back.
“But my idea’s better.” Head 2 replied. “Not as messy.”
“I like messy.” Head 3 answered back.
“I don’t.” Head 2 said and soon all three heads of Cerberus Hound were arguing amongst themselves. As his three heads were arguing the Rangers were quick to take advantage. “Let’s bring them together!” Red Ranger ordered. The others agreed.
The Power Blaster was assembled and the three heads of Cerberus Hound were still arguing over which strategy would be best to destroy the Rangers. They didn’t know it was too late for them to decide as the combined power blast streaked towards them. Upon impact the Cerberus Hound fell to the ground and exploded like all monsters before them did.
“All right! That was so cool!” they all shouted celebrating over Cerberus Hound’s destruction unaware that Goldar was ready to attack from behind. By the time Blue Ranger saw Goldar attacking it was too late to warn the others.
A couple good sword strikes and Pink, Yellow, Blue and Black Rangers were taken down. Red Ranger barely dodged the Simian’s sword strike and kept his own sword ready. But Goldar still had the element of surprise on his side as Red Ranger was not completely prepared to face Goldar. This fact became evident as Goldar swung his sword under Red Ranger’s Power Sword and sent it flying out of his hands. Next thing Red Ranger knew was Goldar holding his sword at Red Ranger’s throat as the evil Simian made ready to deliver his final strike.
“And now I cast you out into the afterlife Red Ranger!” Goldar said as he swung his sword down at the defenseless Red Ranger.
Only to have his sword hand be held back as Goldar felt his hand being grabbed.
“I think not monkey boy.”
“Huh?” Goldar blinked as he turned around… and saw one Terry Bogard keeping him from landing his sword blow on the Red Ranger.
“You know, your putties weren’t much of a problem.” Terry said clapping his hands as if wiping dust off them. “I’m wondering, are you any better?”
Goldar seemed surprised by the statement. “What is this?! A mere weak and pathetic human dares to defy the Almighty Goldar!”
Terry chuckled. “All mighty? Pal, my little brother could beat you.”
For his warrior’s pride, that insult was too much. As he raised his sword up. “Infidel! To defy the will of Goldar is to court death! And death is what you shall…”
“Huh?” Goldar saw a blinding light come right at him and then he raised his sword into a defensive position to block what ever was coming at him however it was for not at what ever it was hit his chest and he was sent flying back ten feet. “Argh!” he cried as he landed. He went to get up but felt his chest and felt his arm had been cracked but more than that… there was the impression of a fist now in it. Goldar looked up and saw Terry still looking at him but now was retracting his fist. As Goldar looked down at ground he saw a broken blade. His.
“Anyone ever tell you talk to much?” Terry asked.
“What?!” Goldar then looked at what was in his hands. The broken hilt of his sword. He then stared at Terry. “What… what the hell are you?”
“Someone who doesn’t take kindly to monsters trying to kill people.” Terry said as he simply walked toward Goldar. “Let’s see how good you are in a fair fight.”
“Foolish human! Your tricks won’t work with me! I am the greatest fighter of my people still alive! You will fall!”
“I don’t think so.” Terry said as he charged forward then executed a flying wheel kick that connected with Goldar’s jaw that sent him down to the ground. “Well it looks like the greatest warrior of you people has a glass jaw.” Terry said smirking.
Red Ranger could only stare in shock as had only taken two moves and four minutes to utterly defeat Goldar. Terry was now about to dust himself off but then saw another monster that was now advancing on the now unconscious Blue, Black, Yellow Rangers who was trying to be guarded by the Pink Ranger with her bow but it looked as if she had twisted her own ankle.
“Oh great. Another one!” Pink Ranger said as a new monster came down into the fray. “Who’s this guy?”
The monster looked like a black knight with spikes and a lance with blades on the end. “I am the Knight of Terror. When one looks into my face all shall know fear.”
“Oh great. As if we weren’t beaten enough by Cerberus Hound and Goldar. Now we’ve got this guy to deal with!” Black Ranger complained.
“Be careful Zack. If Zedd sent this guy then he has to be dangerous.” Blue Ranger said.
“That is correct Blue Ranger.” Knight of Terror answered. “And I shall show you why as you LOOK INTO THE FACE OF TERROR!”
Knight of Terror’s face plate opened up as the Rangers all looked into it. Upon looking Pink, Blue, Black and Yellow Rangers all relived their darkest fears. For the Blue Ranger it was the jelly fish monster which emphasized Billy’s fear of fish.
For Yellow Ranger it was her fear of heights as she hung on a cliff about ready to fall. Pink Ranger remembered being trapped in the Samuri Fan Man’s jar as monsters looked in at her. Them so big and her so tiny.
Black Ranger remembered fading away as if he had never existed. Nothing he had done making a difference, because he had never come to be. Now the Rangers had all conquered these fears but it only took facing these fears again to throw them off and to bring Knight of Terror in for the kill. He was about to deliver a strike that would have surely decapitated Pink Ranger had it not been for someone coming to her rescue.
“CRACK SHOT!!!” Terry attacked the current monster of the day knocking him back saving the Pink Ranger. He looked over at her. “Thought you could use some help.”
“Yeah thanks.” Pink Ranger replied as Red Ranger flew overhead with his sword drawn and immediately started striking Knight of Terror.
Red Ranger then slashed the monster with the Power Sword and then Pink Ranger hit it with arrows however Terry then looked at it and asked the Red Ranger. “So what exactly do you do with this thing?”
“Destroy it.” Red Ranger said.
“Destroy or kill?” Terry asked.
“Lord Zedd brings objects to life as monsters and once defeated they return to their normal state.” Pink Ranger said.
“Oh, ” Terry said relieved. “Then that means I have no problems with this.” He then started to charge up his ki.
“Huh?” Red Ranger asked.
“POWER WAVE!!!” Terry then slammed his fist down on to the ground and a golden wave of ki came churning the earth and splitting the street as Terry’s trademark ki projectile hit Zedd’s latest creation… which was now going back to the drawing board.
The Rangers all looked at Terry speechless but all asking the same question in their minds. ~ What the hell was that?~
Zedd could only stare in shock as he saw that this was the power that he had felt. “A human?! A mere human can produce this much power! Dark Specter wouldn’t believe it! I must tell him about this. I must…” Zedd then stopped. ~ Why should I? With this man under MY control, the Power Rangers would be destroyed. And perhaps there are others like him. Others that I could bring under the banner of evil to serve me! Then I could become the Undisputed Emperor of Evil!~
With that in mind not to mention the chance to kill three unconscious rangers, Zedd left for the earth.
Unaware of the presence that had been watching from the shadows.
~It’s not your time to learn about humanity… most of all Terry Bogardï¿½ still I think it will be amusing to see you two fight each other. ~ the force thought.
The Rangers continued to stare at Terry as he stood at the spot Knight of Terror had fallen. Red Ranger asked Yellow “Is this what happens at KOF?” Yellow Ranger didn’t answer due to her being totally speechless about what she saw. And next thing anyone knew Terry turned to look at the Rangers.
“So you’re the famous Power Rangers huh?” Terry asked. All Red Ranger could do was nod.
“Pleased to meet you.” Terry added as he offered his hand to Red Ranger who was ready to shake it until a lightning strike sent everyone flying all over the place. Explosions erupted where the lightning struck, and everyone was clearly disoriented.
Terry, Pink Ranger and Red Ranger then got up shaking off the lighting explosion that had erupted. They turned around. “Oh my god…” Pink Ranger muttered.
Lord Zedd had arrived.
He stood to his full height. The chrome plates reflecting the sunlight off his massive frame, showing his rugged build. His Z staff by his side ready to be used as a weapon at his master’s command. Clearly Lord Zedd was looking for a battle, and a victory.
“I am Lord Zedd. Emperor of all I see!” Zedd said announcing himself then turned to look at Terry. “Are you the one who helped destroy two of my most deadliest monsters and defeated my greatest warrior Goldar?”
“If you mean the gold monkey and those two others then yes I am.” Terry answered. “Why is there a problem?”
“Is there a problem?” Zedd repeated the question in disbelief. “Yes there is a problem! Your interference kept me from destroying the Rangers! If that isn’t a problem then I don’t know what is!”
“Well if you want to solve the problem yourself Zedd why don’t you try it?” Black Ranger shot back. Zedd cast an evil glow as he had something sinister come to mind. “Oh trust me Black Ranger I won’t try I will!” And with that Zedd swung his Z staff towards Terry and the Rangers shooting lightning in their direction and sent them flying on impact.
Once again Terry and the Rangers had to reorient themselves but Zedd wasn’t going to give Terry the chance as he went and grabbed Terry by his vest and made ready to carry him off. “Time to go boy. I must see how you can be of service to me.”
“I can answer that question for you right now.” Terry answered as he slipped out of his vest and gave Zedd a kick in the stomach and a side kick to his metal chin. Even though Zedd was protected the kick still had enough power to jar Zedd a little to send him staggering for a few seconds. Enough time for Terry to pick up his vest and put it back on. Then he turned to stare at Zedd.
“You want me to come with you well you’re going to have to beat me to do it. Because there is no way I’m going to go with you willingly. And don’t bother sending any of your flunkies, I’ve already proven I can beat them!” Zedd took Terry’s challenge very seriously and seemed to relish the chance to show this young upstart just why Zedd was the Emperor of Evil.
Terry waved his hand telling the Rangers to stay back. “If he pulls anything then you can interfere. But this fight stays one on one.” Red Ranger agreed.
“All right Terry. We’ll hang back.” Red Ranger answered. Then he watched Terry get into a fighting stance and Zedd get into his as they got ready to do battle.
Sure enough Zedd delivered the first strike with his Z staff which Terry blocked. Then came a series of more strikes and attacks from each combatant and Red Ranger had to admit that Zedd was a pretty fair fighter when he had his Z staff with him. Even Terry was impressed with Zedd’s techniques, even though he still wondered how Zedd would do hand to hand.
“You want to put that staff down so I can really see how good you are?” Terry asked.
Zedd paused as if thinking about Terry’s request then answered with a quick “No!” as he swung his staff around sending bolts of lightning Terry’s way. The lightning was stray and even though most of the lightning hit Terry Zedd didn’t care who else it would hurt. Already several civilians who were nearby got hit by the bolts and were knocked down. One of them Terry saw was a little girl who was sill holding her teddy bear. Her mother ran to the girl’s side sobbing and crying out for someone to help her.
“You monster!” Terry shouted. “They are innocent people! They didn’t deserve to be hurt!”
“Innocent?” Zedd said in disbelief. “That makes what I did all the more important. For is it not always the innocent who suffer in these battles?” Zedd then laughed out loud as if proud of what he had done, but Terry wasn’t proud.
In fact he was downright pissed, as Zedd soon found out as Terry built up his ki and made ready to release his most devastating attack, giving the Emperor of evil a lesson he would never forget.
“POWER… GEYSER!!!” Terry shouted using his Desperation Attack to end this fight and to not only counter but repel and envelop the self styled ‘Emperor of Evil’.
Beneath all of five of the Rangers helmets, their eyes were about as wide as plates.
For when the smoke cleared there was Terry Bogard standing tall throwing his hat in the air giving his ‘Okay!’ salute. And there was Zedd, a pale imitation of the fearful despot he once was. His flesh was charred, his metal plates singed, and his aura was dimmer that it usually was. And it was so much of an effort just to try to be able to stand.
“I…” Zedd rasped as he leaned against his staff on his knees, his pain so very much to bear, “… will never forgetï¿½ this day… boy…” with that Lord Zedd teleported away before Red Ranger could plunge his sword into Zedd’s black heart or before Pink Ranger could had fired her arrows at him.
Both of them had never before seen Lord Zedd looking that vulnerable. And after what he had did to their friend only a few weeks ago, they were sourly tempted to do to him what Zedd had done to the Green Ranger. But that would not have been the Rangers’ way. Also they were already weak from the battle enough. There was no need to continue further.
The power also needed to be recharged, which was evident when the Rangers demorphed in front of Terry. Fortunately no one else had seen and Jason motioned for Terry to follow behind a bush so they could talk better.
“So you’re the Rangers.” Terry said looking at the five Rangers unmorphed.
“Surprised?” Kimberly asked.
“Not really.” Terry answered. “They could only have been you.”
Everyone looked confused by Terry’s remark. But Billy asked the question “How?”
“Your spirits are strong, and the way you all fought Zedd showed that you all have the same character and show of spirit not only outside of battle but inside as well.” The Rangers then considered Terry’s words when their communicators went off and Zordon was on the other end.
“Rangers please teleport to the Command Center. And bring your friend with you.” Zordon said. Terry looked confused as to what was about to happen next when Kimberly said not to worry.
Soon six teleport streams, the usual five and one bright blue one then left the scene. Terry had never teleported before and clearly it was now his turn to be surprised.
Upon arriving at the Command Center, Billy, Trini and Zack were placed in to healing tanks to take care of their injuries. This left Terry, Kimberly, Jason left in the command center with Zordon and Alpha 5, who then greeted him, “Greetings Mr. Bogard. I’ve heard a lot about you. I’d like you to meet Zordon.” Alpha motioned to the central tube where Zordon stood.
“Welcome Terry Bogard.” Zordon had said. “I bid you greetings and welcome you to the Command Center.”
Terry didn’t know what to say. Earlier in the morning he had been working at the Angel Grove docks, then he found himself at the Youth Center, in a monster battle the next second, and now he found himself looking up at a giant floating head. He had seen many things in his travels, but never anything that looked like a ‘Star Wars’ movie.
“Kinda reminds you our first day.” Jason smirked looking at Terry’s face.
“Rangers. If you don’t mind, I would like to Mr Bogard alone.” Zordon said.
“It’s okay Zordon. Right now I just want to see how Trini and the others are doing.” Kimberly said.
“Yeah me too. I really wish Tommy was still here.” Jason said.
Terry took notice of that. “Who’s Tommy?”
A melancholy silence fell over everyone in the Command Center. “He’s a friend. He was also one of our teammates.” Jason answered.
“Was?” Terry asked. “Is he?ï¿½”
“No.” Kimberly answered. Then she said nothing more.
Zordon then spoke. “It is a long and painful story. But it’s one that can be told another time. Right now I must speak with Mr. Bogard. Kimberly, why don’t you and Alpha see how your friends are doing.”
“Sure thing Zordon.” Jason answered. “And thanks.”
Terry looked over at Kimberly and Jason who were walking back with Alpha to the medical ward. In Kimberly he saw her own grief and the loss of not being with someone that she definitely cared for. He then put those thoughts aside as he looked over at Zordon. “What is that you want to talk to me about and how is it that you know about me?”
“It is a subject very recent and one you find very painful… the Armor of Mars.”
Terry’s eyes went wide in shock. “How do you know about that?!”
“I had been watching you during your confrontation with Laocorn Gaudeamas and the Armor of Mars. I know what the battle had cost you.” Terry sighed as he had come back to reality. Cold hard reality.
“Yeah.” Was all Terry said as he relived the moment when he lost Sulia. He then looked up at Zordon and asked. “Are you here to give me some kind of cosmic wisdom or something?”
“It’s probably nothing you haven’t already heard.” Zordon replied. “Except I do offer my condolences and sympathies for your loss.”
Terry then cast a look at Zordon and felt a wave of anger rush through him. “Well, I think you could have done more than offer condolences! WHERE WERE YOUR RANGERS IN THIS MESS?!” Terry shouted as all his grief and anger came to the fore.
“Your Rangers are supposed to be the champions of good and justice! Protecting this planet from all evil! But where were they when Laocorn put on the armor? Where were they when Mars was reborn? Where were they when Sulia died?”
Zordon sighed. He knew no answer would have been good enough for Terry. ~ When it comes to matters of the heart, no explanation is good enough. ~ he remembered his father Zoltar saying. In Zordon’s experience he found that to be true. In many ways Zordon and Terry were very similar.
“I can’t give you a good enough answer Terry. I can only say that the Rangers were needed elsewhere, and when I saw you facing Mars I knew that the crisis was in good hands.” Terry looked up at Zordon, his tears starting to fall freely.
“The crisis may have been in good hands, but did it have to cost Sulia her life?” Terry asked.
“Unfortunately, sometimes a sacrifice must be made for the greater good.” Zordon said sadly. “I myself have paid such a price.” This got Terry’s interest.
“My very freedom.” Zordon answered. “My life with my family. My wife whom I can never see again. She waits for me at home on my home planet Eltar, knowing I can never go home or leave my prison. Each day I think of not being with her or my children it feels like a part of me is incomplete. Like with you, with your losses of Sulia and Lily.”
“You know of Suliaï¿½AND Lily?” Terry asked.
“I have been watching you Terry.” Zordon answered. “Almost as much as I have been watching my own Rangers as I learned more about them. What made them what they are, what they hope to be, and what they think the future will hold for them.” Terry smirked thinking that the explanation he had given made Zordon sound like a father. Zordon couldn’t help but smile and nod in agreement.
“I suppose I have been.” Zordon said. “In many ways my role of mentor to the Power Rangers has eased the pain I feel somewhat. I feel as if I am part of a family when I am guiding them in their battle against evil. And when they go into combat I feel as if I am with them in spirit, just as I am sure you will someday.” This got Terry’s attention as Zordon explained more.
“I believe that your destiny, as well as the destinies of several others are going to be tied into that of the Rangers as time goes on. Leading to a great conflict which will determine whether or not humanity will live or whether it will perish. And if humanity survives then that will begin an age of prosperity that will last for many centuries, if not millenia, to come.”
Terry considered Zordon’s words and sensed a hidden apprehension behind them. “You sound as if this ‘wondrous future’ is not for certain.”
“Sadly it is not guaranteed.” Zordon answered back. “There are forces out in the universe who would prefer that humanity doesn’t evolve beyond its current stage. They prefer to keep humanity to the role of toys and chess pieces for their own amusement. Also on your own world, there are those who may seek control.”
Terry sighed knowing who Zordon was talking about. “Geese.”
“Exactly. Geese Howard is only interested in control, and I fear that as time goes by he will not have to use too much resources to establish that control.” Zordon remembered another section of the prophesy that told of three forces of good that will find themselves in evil’s debt. And that a terrible price may have to be enacted to defeat the evil creature. The evil Zordon believed, was Geese.
“What about these other threats?” Terry asked. “Are they dangerous as Geese, or more so?”
“I won’t lie and say that some of these forces may be more powerful than Geese.” One Zordon knew to be the ‘Q’ who had been known to play with humanity’s evolution from time to time. He knew of some to be benevolent, but the majority seemed to be nothing more than overgrown children with godlike power. “When the time comes, you will have to be prepared for them.”
“Why can’t I be prepared for them now?” Terry asked intrigued. “If these threats are as dangerous as you say shouldn’t I know all there is to know about them now?”
“No Terry. There is something you must do before you can accept your role in destiny.” Zordon paused as he then said in one word what Terry needed to do.
Terry sighed as if he wasn’t sure how to do what Zordon asked. “I don’t know Zordon. Iï¿½I’m afraid to.”
“Because of all the death and despair that seems to follow you where ever you go?” Zordon asked. “First your father, then Lily, then Sulia. It seems like everyone you love seems destined to die.”
Terry nodded confirming Zordon’s guess to a tee. “Do not fret Terry. For your pain will not last forever, and I sincerely believe that one day you will attain the happiness you so deserve.”
Terry looked confused. “One day?”
“Yes Terry. One day your pain will end. When that day comes you must be prepared for it, and you must go out and look for the happiness you seek. It will not come for you, you will have to find it.”
“But where? Where will I find it?” Terry asked.
“Even I don’t know that.” Zordon answered. “Prophesies aren’t always guaranteed answers. Just be prepared for it. You will know when the time comes.”
Terry then just nodded, grateful for Zordon’s words, and glad that one day he would find the happiness he looked for, if other forces did not prevent him from obtaining it. Terry vowed he would not stop, that he would continue to live.
For Lily, for Sulia, for his father.
And for himself.
Terry then looked back up at Zordon. “Thank you. However…”
Now it was Zordon’s time to stare. “However?”
“I can’t help but notice that Rangers seem really off. The loss of Tommy is affecting them a lot.”
Zordon nodded. “Indeed. The Green Ranger was a part of their team and with him gone it leaves a void.”
“Isn’t here anything you can do him?” Terry asked.
“The Green Ranger powers are gone forever. There is no way to recharge them for Tommy to become a Ranger.”
Terry shook his head. “Well does Tommy have to be the Green Ranger to be a member of the team? I mean would being just a Ranger again be enough.”
Zordon was about to say no but then he thought about it. Terry’s words did make sense. Tommy didn’t have to be the Green Ranger to be a member of the team. However the problem was that he had no spare powers left and the Temple of Ninjor was lost so there was no way to get new power coins. So that left…
“Zordon?” Terry asked.
“There is one possible way however there is risk involved.” Zordon explained. “There is a force of power that I know of called the Light of Goodness. It is connected to the power that is used to energize the Rangers Thunder Zords. The Light of Goodness is strong enough to be used to create almost anything with a purely good intent but only once and such a process if used on a human could be risky.”
Terry looked up at Zordon and said, “Everything worthwhile has an element of risk in it. If we are unwilling to risk then we are unwilling to live. Besides, shouldn’t it be Tommy’s choice if he wants to get powers or not?”
Zordon looked down at the young man who had managed to bring out a long forgotten teenage characteristic in him. His risk taker feelings. “I do believe you are right Terry Bogard and I have noticed that the Rangers morale with the loss of Tommy has been steadily dropping. The creation of a new Ranger would very well change that and I can think of no one better suited for the role of the White Ranger than Tommy.
Terry smiled. “I could imagine the others would be thrilled.
“No Terry. You can not tell Jason or Kimberly or any of the others. If Lord Zedd were to learn of this, he would stop at nothing to take Tommy. This is the only place on earth that Zedd cannot see through.”
Terry nodded understanding that Zedd had many resources available to him. Terry knew that he had beaten Zedd but he didn’t think the alien leader would take it lying down and also though Zedd would have many more resources than Terry did. “Alright Zordon. I won’t tell anyone.”
“Thank you. I trust you will wish to say goodbye to the other Rangers before you leave?” Zordon asked. Terry nodded indicating that he would and he made his way to the medical ward where Jason, Kimberly and Alpha were monitoring Zack, Trini and Billy’s conditions. When they saw Terry in the doorway he gave the indication that he was leaving and decided to allay their foremost concern.
“Don’t worry. I promise to keep your identities a secret.” Terry said to Jason and Kimberly.
“I take you will be leaving soon.” Jason said.
“Yeah. With Zedd knowing about me I don’t think I can stay here that long. I don’t want to end up bring more trouble to you all.”
“It’s no trouble.” Jason answered. “I think we can all say that we were glad you were here.”
“You got that right.” Kimberly added. “Do you think we’ll see each other again?”
“Well Zordon said that we would.” Terry answered. “Someday.”
“I guess we’ll be looking forward to someday.” Jason said shaking Terry’s hand. “Take care.”
“Thanks.” Terry answered. Alpha then proceeded to the main command center and went to the teleport control getting ready to teleport Terry out. Jason and Kim walked with Terry to the main command room to see him off.
Jason and Kimberly looked on as Terry Bogard was teleported out of the Command Center in a streak of bright blue, leaving Zordon to hope that Terry’s future would come to pass.
As soon as he made his way back to his palace Zedd proceeded quickly to his regeneration chamber where he could regain his strength and hopefully regain enough power so he could face and defeat Terry Bogard again. He then turned to address Goldar who was standing guard over his master.
“Make sure no one enters!” Zedd ordered Goldar. “No one is permitted to interrupt my sleep.”
“Of course master!” Goldar said as he stood guard over Zedd’s door while he slept. After a few hours Goldar soon fell asleep himself, as did the rest of the court throughout the palace as pollen dust flew throughout the hallways of the lunar palace giving everyone a healthy amount of sleep. All but one who walked the hallways watching the sleepers as he walked by.
Mirabilis looked on at the sleeping Zedd and his court. The Pollen of the Flower of Amerillia worked like a charm. A very rare flower, of which he was the sole possessor of it now. Its pollen could be used to make people forget things or allow someone to rework their memories.
And that was what Mirabilis was doing. Erasing from Zedd and his cronies minds everything that happened. That is when the rangers that had defeated Goldar, the Putties and another useless monster. That Zedd himself never came down to earth and to make sure nothing could be made other wise, Mirabilis healed Zedd to make him well.
~This isn’t permanent. It will fade… when the time is right. ~ Mirabilis thought. 1994 was too early for the UAE to know about the existence of humans with such power.
But 1996… that was a different story.
His work done Mirabilis then vanished into the shadows with only one departing thought.
~I love my job. ~
At a wilderness cabin miles away from Angel Grove Tommy Oliver was practicing with a pad that was strapped against a tree. Tommy threw punches and kicks at the tree and each one hit it’s mark.
However there was a touch more emotion behind Tommy’s moves as he made contact with his target. His mind was clouded by memories. Memories of Lord Zedd, memories of the last battle as the Green Ranger, and memories of the powers gone for good.
He could not help but feel a touch of sadness and anger for what happened. And no matter what Tommy did, he could not help but feel those emotions ticking away at him. Finally he stopped hitting the target and wearily went to his gym bag where he took a couple sips of water. That’s when he heard a voice behind him.
“Nice moves. But don’t you think the forestry service will complain if you keep hitting trees like that?” Tommy turned around to see who was speaking to him and his mouth almost dropped when he saw who the speaker was.
“Oh wow! You’re Terry Bogard aren’t you? King of Fighters champion for 92 and 93 weren’t you?” Tommy said in awe and admiration.
“Guilty as charged.” Terry said. “I ran into an old friend of yours from Angel Grove. Actually a couple of old friends. They spoke very highly of you.”
“Oh you mean Jason, Kim and those guys?” Tommy smiled at the mentioning of his friends. “How are they doing?”
“They got into a pretty big scrap with Lord Zedd and two monsters.” Terry continued. “Fortunately they won, but the battle did wear them out a bit.”
Tommy sighed as he realized that Terry must have known that he and his friends were the Power Rangers. Or at least that Tommy was one once. “Are they going to be okay?”
“They’ll make it. But I can tell that you’re not taking it well.” Terry said. Tommy nodded in agreement and then told his tale.
“When I started out as a Ranger, I was the evil Green Ranger under Rita’s control. I did terrible things to people. The Rangers especially. And when I was freed I had to do all I could to make it up to them. I fought alongside them, helped out others when they needed it, and do everything I could to be the best hero that I could be. Then Rita brought up the green candle and my powers were gone, as was what I believed was my chance to make amends for what I did as the evil Green Ranger.”
Terry caught notion of Tommy’s use of the past tense. “Believed?”
“I got a second chance when Zordon infused the coin with his own energy. And although it took a lot out of him the Rangers reenergized him and in the process reenergized me. For a while.”
“Powers weren’t permanent?” Terry then asked.
“No.” Tommy said. “And now I feel as if my chance to make amends is gone again.” A cloud of despair seemed to cloud Tommy again but Terry would not have any of that.
“Just because your powers are gone doesn’t mean that you still don’t have a chance to make amends for what you did as the evil Green Ranger. And what happened then wasn’t your fault. If anything Rita’s to blame for trying to control you.” Tommy nodded in agreement but still couldn’t help the way he felt.
“Tell you what. Why don’t we have a sparring session.” Tommy looked up surprised, almost as if Ed McMahon had come to him and said he won the million dollar grand prize from Publisher’s Clearing House. “What?ï¿½youï¿½meanï¿½sparï¿½with you?”
Terry couldn’t help but smirk as Tommy got tongue tied. “Sure. Besides I think that tree needs a rest don’t you?”
Tommy then smiled at Terry’s little joke and soon they both found a clearing where they could have a sparring match. Both got into respective fighting stances and Terry let Tommy have the first shot.
It was never said that Tommy started things simple. The first move he did was a spinning jump kick which Terry ducked back to evade. Tommy then went on the attack with another series of kicks and punches driving Terry back a ways. To say that Terry was impressed was an understatement.
“Not bad.” Terry said complementing Tommy before going into his own attack. He kept his attacks to basic Hakkyokusaiken moves, not using any ki based attacks whatsoever. Terry had perfect technique but he also made one mistake that Tommy could capitalize on. Terry left his chest exposed enough so that Tommy could get in one good shot.
And get it in he did.
The punch was dead on and Terry was surprised to say the least that Tommy got in that punch. The surprise was enough for Tommy to capitalize and do a little more damage to Terry, until Terry fought back and reinforced his guard.
Soon it was over and both Terry and Tommy shook hands and bowed after having a hard earned match. “I’m impressed. I didn’t think I left myself that open.” Terry stated.
“It was a lucky shot.” Tommy said. “Right place right time.”
Terry gave a lopsided smile. “I learned a lot from you. The fight had shown me that I needed to get back to basics. I’ve spent too much time fighting in advanced stages.” Tommy was floored by Terry’s admission to say the least.
“You learned from me?” Tommy said.
“We’re all learning. The day we stop is the day we die.” Tommy nodded thankful for Terry’s words. “Powers or no powers that won’t stop.”
“And powers or no powers we still do the best we can.” Tommy then added getting the jist of what Terry was getting at. “Did Jason send you to check on me?”
“No I decided to do it myself. But they were worried about you.”
Tommy was silent for a few seconds then said “Well I guess I’d better tell them I’ll be coming home soon. I think I’ve spent enough time here.” Terry then thanked Tommy for the fight and then made his way to the dirt path which led to the bike path back to the city.
Terry smiled as he left Tommy’s cabin, already glad to have met and gotten to know the former Green, soon to be White, Ranger. Tommy had real potential in the martial arts, their sparing match proved that. He remembered the shocked and awed look on his face when Terry suggested that they spar with each other. He had enjoyed the little match and the look of happiness on Tommy’s face made Terry feel good. And he knew Tommy felt the same way.
It took a good two hours for Terry to traverse the bike path back to the parking lot of Angel Grove National Park, where a surprise was waiting for him. His motorcycle restored with a note on the handlebars. Terry quickly grabbed the note and read its contents.
“‘To Terry. We all feel bad about you losing your bike thanks to Lord Zedd destroying it. There for Alpha and Billy worked together create a new bike identical to yours only this bike won’t ever been blown up unless a high level member of the UAE attacks it. Hope you enjoy it. Take care, Jason, Trini, Zack, Kimberly, and Billy. PS. Zordon says live your life to the fullest. ‘” Terry let out a small chuckle at that last line. Some how it fit for Zordon to have the last word. “Thanks guys…” He smiled as he got on to his new bike. “… thank you Zordon. For showing me another possible path to take.” He whispered as he put his dufflebag into the side car and then hit the ignition and drove right out of Angel Grove.
“And that is how it happened.” Terry finished.
Cassie’s eyes were wide in surprise. “Wow you met the original Rangers? And helped them out?” Terry nodded as if saying yes.
“Careful or you might wind up taking credit for all the Rangers’ adventures.” Joe said with a wiseguy demeanor.
“Not likely.” Terry said. “I think the rangers have proven that they are more than capable of handling things on their own. They are good fighters.”
“Not as good as us though.” Andy added but then Mai elbowed him in the chest.
“Maybe not, but they could well be.” Mai said. “And their mentor probably wouldn’t cop a feel like my sensei would.” Mai remembered how many times her and Andy’s sensei would try to fondle Mai’s breasts only to wind up flat on his back and with a concussion.
“I do think there are some ki capable fighters there.” Terry said. “Maybe someday we’ll know for sure.”
At the Lunar Palace Zedd was sleeping in his regeneration chamber as Rita looked up at the frozen Leslie Zedden hanging on the wall. She was anxious to start the next plan to destroy the Rangers when she heard a howl of pain come from Zedd’s regeneration chamber. Quickly she got to her feet and ran to her husband’s side with Goldar and Rito in close pursuit.
When they all arrived Zedd was grabbing his head as if he was hit by a tremendous wave of pain. “Wow. His headache must be even worse than yours sis.” Rito said. Rita then clocked Rito with her staff letting him know he had just said something stupid.
“Master are you all right?” Goldar asked. Zedd was sitting upright as awareness flooded through his mind. Awareness of a time two years ago. Awareness of a battle he lost.
“I remember.” Zedd said as he thought of Terry Bogard for the first time in two years.
As did Goldar who quickly told Rita of the battle Zedd had with Terry and the Rangers years ago. “Uh oh!” was all Rita could say.
“If that guy to do what he did to Ed. Who knows what he could do to the rest of us?” Rito asked.
“He won’t get the chance.” Zedd vowed “For I intend to make him pay for defeating me.” Zedd then scanned the Earth for Terry, looking for him anywhere he could.
“Yes. Make him pay/”
Terry Bogard and Zedd weren’t the only one thinking of that day two years ago. Another was also.
Lord Mirabilis stood on his balcony looking out at the space before him, realizing that the flower had probably wore off by now, and soon he too would know of Terry Bogard and the King of Fighters. Then he would begin his plans.
“Thinking back toy your previous handiwork?” a voice said from behind. Mirabilis turned around and saw Shadow standing behind him. “What’s it to you?”
“It’s just that I’ve been thinking about a few things, ever since the I. D. War, and what you did to Zedd a few years ago.”
Mirabilis turned and glared at Shadow. “You know it was not yet time for Zedd to know about Bogard. Be grateful I even granted you that favor.”
“I asked for no favors from you, and I expect none from you.” Shadow said. “I’m justï¿½wondering right now.”
“Oh?” Mirabilis asked. “What about?”
Shadow sighed then explained to Mirabilis what he was thinking. “Do you know why Karla rejected the game boards you recommended?”
It seemed like a stupid question to ask, but Mirabilis knew Shadow would speak more on the subject. The Shadow Lord of Evil answered “Because it was too much like the Q and their toying of the universe?”
Shadow nodded yes, but still it was only part of the answer. “There’s more to it though. Before we got involved in the I. D. War John paid her a visit. “Mirabilis’s eye raised at the thought of Karla getting a visit from the ambassador to the Lords of Kobol. “What did he want?” Mirabilis asked.
“To warn Karla.” Shadow answered. “To warn her that if she took your path in the I. D. War then we would know nothing but sorrow.” Mirabilis seemed confused by Shadow’s answer but Shadow then explained.
“John had shown her an alternate future path. Where the game boards were used, and Kincaid discovered that use. He wasï¿½very unhappy with Karla, and with us. So much so that he was ready to give into the dark path that he and the Night Rangers seem an inch from crossing into. He destroyed the boards, and confronted Karla to where he made sure she realized her folly. The confrontation wasï¿½unsettling.” Shadow remembered how Karla said that Kincaid was so close to the darkness he fought against. She never thought using chess boards would lead to those consequences.
Karla realized that universes were not toys. That was the Q’s mentality. It was not hers. And would never be. Shadow then continued his recollections.
“He then glared at me saying that he didn’t want to see me again, then he and the Demon Hunter both would leave the palace to go back on their own respective journeys.”
“Is that why she rejected my idea?” Mirabilis asked. “Because a Lord of Kobol had shown where this path would lead?”
“Not just for us, but for you as well.” Mirabilis again was confused but Shadow explained again. “After the death of the Silver Zeo Ranger in the I. D. War Rocky DeSantos and Ryan Steele sought revenge against you for the deaths of the ones they loved. And like Karla, you wereï¿½regretting your actions as well. “Mirabilis saw the image in his mind’s eye of Blue Trooper and Blue Zeo, grief overtaking them, and Mirabilis being punished for his actions in allowing the triad to make the I. D. War their own game like the Q did with the universe they now observed.
“But the boards would not have allowed us to control events.” Mirabilis said.
“Didn’t matter. Your way would have symbolized what the Q did, and the way they see the universe as their own toy. Fixing what they don’t like, toying with lives as if they were nothing to them.” Shadow paused for a moment and spoke again. “Like we ourselves have probably done from time to time.”
“But we are not like the Q.” Mirabilis said. “We serve our respective ideologies. That’s our rationale.”
“And the Q have their own.” Shadow had stated. “I’ll admit they don’t share our ideologies, but they believe they are justified in what they do. I only hope that Q we met in the I. D. War will see the error of his people’s ways, and realize the path of control leads to nothing but sorrow.”
It was then Mirabilis got Shadow’s point. “We’re turning into the Q aren’t we? Determining the destinies of those we are allied with. Playing God with the forces of good and evil.”
Shadow nodded. “Perhaps. I know I’ve called upon Jeff Kincaid a bit. And I intend to call on him again when the time comes.”
“Do you really want to do that?” Mirabilis added. “I’m not saying this as one who represents evil, but you do think about bringing him into battles quite a bit. Don’t you think he tires of the combat, and wishes to focus on his ‘other’ responsibilities?”
“Like his family and child that’s on the way?” Shadow asked. “I do. And do you know what worries me?”Mirabilis looked on confused then Shadow answered.
“That I won’t let him. That I’ll keep calling on him for the Night Powers. Asking him to take part in battle after battle, taking him away from his own world. Away from his family. All in the name of goodness.” Shadow gripped the balcony and Mirabilis could swear that there was a tear in his eye. After brushing it away Shadow stood tall and regained his composure.
“We are becoming too much like gods. Gods like the Q are being.” Mirabilis nodded surprisingly agreeing with Shadow.
“I know. I look down at people whom I used to serve with honor and distinction, and I find myself choosing their paths for them. All for the cause. All for evil.”
“Which is why we need to put our affairs in order now.” A voice said from behind. Both shadow and Mirabilis turned around to see who the being speaking to them was. It was Karla.
“We must make preparations for this universe to be able to stand on its own. None of the Higher Powers can be trusted not to decide to play god in the affairs of the universe any longer. The Q especially.”
“I take it then we should start looking into our final preparations now?” Shadow asked.
“Yes.” Karla said. “I think it’s almost time for us to move on.”
Andros and Sabrina had made their way to the apartment where Cassidy and Zhane were last seen. They caught Stacy walking by with her hands flying everywhere “He’s hopeless.” She said as she walked by Andros and Sabrina. “Who was that?” Andros asked.
“I don’t know. But let’s not worry about that. We have to find Zhane.” Sabrina said. Both went up the elevator and saw Nick watching the T. V. with a horse race going on at the moment, but he did take notice of Andros and Sabrina’s presences.
“Oh excuse me.” Nick said. “Are you friends of Cassidy’s?” Andros and Sabrina looked confused and Andros looked at Nick and said “No we’re looking for a friend. He was last seen here.”
“He?” Nick asked. “Was he perhaps looking for Cassidy?”
“Uhhh yeah.” Sabrina answered remembering the visit she and Andros had with Lisa. “He was looking for her andï¿½was hoping he could take her out.”
“Well he’s not here. And it’s probably a good thing he isn’t if Nash finds out Cassidy’s been dating a guy he didn’t know about.” Nick answered. Andros and Sabrina couldn’t help but smirk a little bit at Nick’s answer. “They’re not dating sir.” Sabrina answered.
“Yeah he’s just looking for her. She helped him withï¿½something. He just wanted to thank her.” Andros added. Nick considered Andros and Sabrina’s words then spoke again.
“Well, Cassidy has gone off on her own to Gaudeamas tower. So if you’re looking for her you might try there.”
“Thanks.” Andros said. “How do we get there?” Nick went to get a paper and pen and wrote the directions down. “Now if you’ll excuse me I’ve got some research I have to do.” Nick then went back to his horse race as Andros and Sabrina went back down the elevator. “He seems like a sweet old man.” Sabrina said.
“But he hasn’t seen Zhane.” Andros answered back and he activated his communicator to contact him. “Zhane can you read me?” No answer.
“There must be trouble. We’d better contact the others.” Sabrina nodded and Andros immediately got on his communicator and tried to call T. J. and the rest of the Astro Rangers.
Nick in turn contacted his son Nash who contacted Lisa.
“Those two kids Nick described sound like they were the same two that came to my door.” Lisa answered on her house phone. “They said they were looking for Cassidy.
Nash was driving the ‘Cuda while talking on his cell. “They could still be, only there is another one they are looking for according to Nick.”
“You don’t think Cassidy’s in trouble do you?” Lisa asked.
“I hope not.” Nash answered. “But right now we need to be sure.” Lisa asked what they would do next.
“I’ll pick you up at your house.” Nash said. “Then we go to Gaudeamas tower.”
At the Bogard firehouse two twin sisters, reunited, were getting to know each other better. “So you’re a cheerleader?” Alison asked Ashley.
“Yeah. It’s kind of fun.” Ashley answered back. “It is hard to keep up school spirit though, especially if the sports teams are losing a game.”
“Which sport do you like to cheer for?” Alison asked.
“Soccer. My friend Carlos is on the soccer team. I also dabble with engines and cars when I’m not cheering.”
This interested Alison. “You’re a mechanic?”
“Yeah. I’ve fixed a few engines from time to time. My dad however wasn’t too keen on me learning about cars though, but I’ve still helped out now and then. But enough about me. I want to hear about you.” Ashley stared at Alison with great interest wondering what Alison’s story was.
“Well I live with my grandfather, and I go to a private school with my best friend Cassidy. It’s kind of a drag to wear the same uniform all the time though. I’ve gotten more detention demerits than I can count.” Ashley chuckled when she heard that. Alison looked at her sister oddly wondering what was so funny.
“I’m sorry.” Ashley said between giggles. “It’s just that I’ve spent so much time trying to stay OUT of detention, and you keep finding ways to get IN.” Alison heard the logic behind that and did have to admit that it was kind of funny and found herself chuckling as well. After all the laughter was out of their system Ashley then asked Alison the million dollar question.
“So how about that fighting style you have. Who taught it to you?”
Alison smiled as Ashley asked that question. “That is a combat style known only as Hakkyokousaiken. It’s an old art that uses the life force of Earth as well as our own inherent power as a form of defense.”
“Inherent power?” Ashley asked.
“It’s called ‘ki’ which is a term for our own life force. The Hakkyokousaiken art, as well as a few other arts make use of the manipulation of ‘ki’. But not everyone can access this ability.”
“Can you?” Ashley asked.
“To a point. My cousin Terry however is a lot better at it than me.” Alison smiled as she mentioned Terry’s name. Ashley could tell she loved her adopted cousin very much, and she most likely felt that way about the rest of her family too.
“Tell me about him.” Ashley said.
“Terry? Where do I start?” Alison said as she tried to think how best to sum up Terry. “Well he and Andy were adopted as kids by my Uncle Jeff. After Jeff died he travelled the world to learn all he could about fighting. When I was old enough I followed his example. I even tried out in a few fights myself.”
“So where do you work out?” Ashley asked.
“I go to a rink not far from here.” Alison answered. “It is a rough place however.”
“I don’t mind.” Ashley said. “I’d like to see it.” Alison thought about it for a second then called out to her grandfather. “Grandpa I’m leaving!”
The Bogard brothers, Mai, Mary, Joe, T. J. , Cassie, Carlos and Derik slid down the fire pole and Derik immediately asked “You going out somewhere?”
“I’ll be back later Grandpa.” Alison said. “I just want to be with my twin right now.”
“Mind if Andy and I tag along for a little bit?” Terry asked.
“No problem Terry. The more the merrier.” Alison said as she and Ashley both smiled. Carlos, Cassie and T. J. looked wide eyed at each other and thought that the twins smiling in unison was a little freaky.
“Hey guys why don’t you come along?” Ashley said to her three friends. The three Astro Rangers decided ‘why not?’ Soon the Bogards and the Astro Rangers were walking down the street making their way to Alison’s ‘training center.’
“So where are we going?” Andy asked.
“The underground fighting rink I frequent.” Alison stated. “Ashley wants to see it.”
Terry looked at her cousin strangely. “Are you sure about that Alison? I mean the fighters you ran into tonight weren’t too happy that you were putting them out of business.”
“Terry, I’m not about to let a couple of sore losers keep me from going to where I do and don’t want to fight.” Terry nodded as they continued to walk until he felt a presence that caused he and Andy to stop.
“Hey Terry what’s wrong?” Alison said seeing that her cousins weren’t exactly calm. They shot her a look that meant ‘Fight’s about to happen. It’s our fight. ‘. She then nodded as she and the Astros left.
“You feel it?” Andy asked.
“Yeah… someone’s watching us.” Terry said.
“Boy nothing gets past you two.”
Two bo staffs came at the Bogard brothers who managed to jump up to avoid them. When they landed they saw Billy and Daniel Kane had appeared.
“Billy Kane. What are you doing here?” Andy shot.
“Isn’t that dumb question?” Billy smirked. “Settling the score of course.” He looked at Daniel. “Andy’s mine but don’t forget Terry’s the better of the two Bogards.”
Daniel smirked. “Fine by me brother. Just more of a challenge.”
Terry and Andy just blinked. “Brother?”
“What? You think you’re the only fighters that are brothers?” Billy said. “This is MY younger brother Daniel. We’re going to mop the floor with you.”
“I wouldn’t count on it Billy.” Terry said.
“Enough with the talking! Time to fight!” Daniel shouted.
Alison and the Astros ran back to the fire house with the Astros wondering what was going on.
“Quick question. What are we doing running? Shouldn’t we help?” T. J. asked.
“No.” Alison said flatly. “Terry shot me a look telling me that they know who is coming for them and they know its going to be one on one for each. Any interference would be an unfair advantage for them. For right now we get back to the firehouse and get Joe. In caseï¿½Terry loses.”
The Astros weren’t sure what to make of Alison’s explanation but they made it to the fire house where Joe, Mai, Mary and Derik were waiting and Alison quickly explained about Terry and Andy telling them to leave the two of them alone.
“Got a bad feeling about this.” Joe muttered.
“Joe, Mary and I’ll go follow Alison and her new friends to where Andy and Terry are. Stay here.” Mai stressed the last two words to Joe.
Joe didn’t argue because he knew as well as Mai did that if Terry and Andy told Alison and the others to just back off, then they were most likely fighting someone strong or someone they knew. ~ And I think I can think of a few names for possibilities. ~
“Let’s go, ” Mary said as she, Mai, Alison and the Astros got into her van and Mary put her foot down as Alison gave directions to where the fight was. Alison hoped that they were not too late.
~I wonder how Cassidy is coming with her night. ~ Alison thought. ~ Probably having a grand old time. ~
At the underground base Cassidy and Zhane were being headed into the main room by Cylons where Circuit Breaker stood waiting. Specter and Vulpa were by her side.
“Well it would seem as if we have guests with us today.” Specter said in an eerily smooth voice that made Cassidy and Zhane’s skin crawl.
“What the hell are you?” Zhane asked defiantly. Cassidy looked on in wonder, and fear.
“Oh forgive me for my impertinence. I am Specter, IL cogitator of the Cylon Empire, and second in command of the Cylon forces on Earth. This is Vulpa II, field commander of the Cylon Centurians stationed here on Earth.”
“Vulpa II?” Zhane asked in surprise.
“Of course. The original Vulpa was destroyed at Market Street.” Cassidy said as she remembered the Gold Centurion that was destroyed and was now looking at his replacement. Specter nodded confirming Cassidy’s suspicions.
“You are correct. And now our commander has special uses for you.” Specter then stepped off to the side as Circuit Breaker walked forward with a smile on her face. Cassidy and Zhane could not believe their eyes when Specter inferred that the Cylon commander was a human.
“How could you?” Zhane asked. “How can you turn on your own species like this?”
“The Rangers didn’t give me a choice.” Circuit Breaker said. “I must have my revenge.”
“REVENGE?!” Cassidy shouted. “For something that wasn’t even their fault?!”
“SILENCE!!!” Circuit Breaker shouted as she slapped Cassidy across the face. “The Rangers are to blame for my sister’s death, for my pain, for EVERYTHING that has happened to me and my family! I will stop at NOTHING to attain my revenge!”
“Even if innocent people are killed?” Zhane shouted.
“No one is completely innocent.” a voice said that seemed to come from around the whole chamber. Cassidy and Zhane looked around to see where it came from only to find the figure appear right behind them. He seemed to have the face of a kindly old man, but the glowing red eyes and feelings of malevolence showed that this being was bad news indeed. “Whoï¿½who are you.” Cassidy asked barely able to get the question out due to her growing fear.
“Someone who has anï¿½admiration for Miss Belle, and who wants to make sure that she gets what is hers.” was all the figure said. Circuit Breaker then got into Cassidy’s face. “Morph.”
Cassidy was taken back by Circuit Breaker’s request. “Morph? Why?”
“Because I’m going to prove that you don’t deserve those powers. Morph now or he gets it.” Circuit Breaker had electricity shooting out of her hand indicating that she would fire if Cassidy didn’t do what she said. “All right. It’s Morphing time!” She called forth her Zeonizers and initiated the morph sequence.
“ZEO RANGER VII-SILVER!!!”
Silver Zeo stood facing Circuit Breaker who then fired the stream of electricity at her sending her flying. “You should have seen that coming. I would’ve.”
Silver Zeo then got back on her feet and got into a fighting stance. Circuit Breaker also did the same. Silver Zeo then threw a jump wheel kick that Circuit Breaker quickly blocked, as well as blocking all of her other advances as well. As if she knew what move Silver Zeo would pull before she could pull it.
“I know Jessie’s moves when I see them. Don’t you have anything original?” Circuit Breaker sneered.
“Original? You want original?” Silver Zeo then threw Circuit Breaker back and went for her Zeo Chain which she swirled around building momentum. Then she threw it hoping to loop it around Circuit Breaker but she flew out of the way causing the chain to miss. Then she flew towards Silver Zeo colliding with her causing the wind to be knocked out of her. Silver Zeo was on the ground gasping for air.
Circuit Breaker stood over her opponent looking down in contempt. “Look at you. There’s nothing special about you. You can’t fight on your own. All your moves are someone else’s. You’re just a little girl in a grown up world. I bet you even call for daddy every time things get tough. Well guess what! Daddy’s not here!”
Silver Zeo looked up at Circuit Breaker and only had a second to take in her form until a world of pain filled her senses. Circuit Breaker sent wave avter wave of electricity into her body overloading the powers causing her to demorph. But even though Cassidy was demorphed Circuit Breaker continued to pour on the power. Cassidy’s scream was heard throughout the room reflecting the intense agony she was feeling.
“STOP IT!!!” Zhane shouted. “SHE’S HAD ENOUGH!!!”
“Agreed.” the ‘dark man’ said as he waved his hand indicating for Circuit Breaker to stop. When she caught notion of this she powered down her electric bolts and Zhane went to Cassidy’s side. “You all right?” Zhane asked.
Fine. I didn’t know you cared though.” Cassidy said with a weak smile. Her sense of humor was still intact.
“Now the pain truly begins.” The ‘dark man’ said as the surroundings around Cassidy and Zhane suddenly changed. They found themselves in glass tubes that seemed to stretch all the way to the ceiling, and no cracks in the glass could be found. There was a rush of air in the tubes so they were getting an air supply. Cassidy looked next to her and saw Zhane looking at him wondering what was happening. Zhane gave a look that said he didn’t know.
Then the ‘evil man’, Specter, Vulpa and Circuit Breaker walked into the room. Circuit Breaker holding a silver device that looked like a morpher. “This is my morpher.” Circuit Breaker said. “It is supposed to hold the powers of the Silver Ranger, which can heal me from my paralysis and increase my own fighting ability. There is only one problem. It has no power.”
She then walked forward as Cassidy and Zhane looked down in fear at what Circuit Breaker , who walked towards the console where the tubes rested, would do next. She had inserted the morpher into the central slot then looked up at the two captive Silver Rangers. “It will though. Once the two of you have been drained dry.”
Cassidy and Zhane stood in Circuit Breaker’s tubes of transference holding the glass walls as Circuit Breaker activated them. Immediately they felt their energy leave them bit by bit making them feel weaker and weaker by the second. The Silver Psycho Morpher rested between the tubes starting to radiate with power. Power that belonged to Cassidy and Zhane. ~ Power that will belong to me!~ Circuit Breaker thought as she looked at Cassidy and Zhane continuing to get weaker as the drain continued.
“When the tubes are finished draining your power, I’ll find someplace ‘suitable’ to dump your remains. I hear the San Francisco dump is an ideal location.” Circuit Breaker then turned and left the room with Vulpa, Specter and the ‘evil man’ following her. Cassidy and Zhane were left standing, but barely.
Both of the Silver Rangers had started to glow again, but their silver glows were flickering. On and off as if a show that the power was being drained. Circuit Breaker and Specter looked down at the morpher as it started to flicker, and flicker brightly showing that it was gaining more and more power.
“Yes!” Circuit Breaker smiled. “Take the power. Give me back what is mine!” She then looked up at Cassidy and Zhane who looked as if they would not last for too long. Their glows started to flicker dimmer and dimmer by the second, and soon they would be drained, powerless, and if they by some chance died well that was no concern of hers.
“I’ll be leaving you now. I hope you enjoy your last moments. I know I will.” Circuit Breaker and her entourage then left Cassidy and Zhane as the transferrence tubes drained them of their powers, and their lives.
From her own corner of the chamber a figure looked on at the Silver Rangers being drained of their powers. The flicker of silver growing dimmer and dimmer by the second, and the figures trying to hold on to life as best they can. This individual looked on at their suffering and smiled at the effects.
“Nice.” Kali thought out loud as she looked on at the dying Silver Rangers. “I’m definitely going to have to remember this.” She then teleported away in a plume of purple flame, her laughter echoing the chamber.
Inside the tubes Cassidy and Zhane felt their powers and life forces being drained away quickly. They struggled to find a way out, but their search was to no avail, at least until Cassidy looked up at the ventilation grill. She turned to look at Zhane and pointed up at the ceiling at the ventilation grates where the oxygen was coming in.
Zhane looked at Cassidy and wondered if they could even reach the ducts. Cassidy shrugged as if saying ‘what have we got to lose?’ Nodding Zhane and Cassidy placed their hands and feet on the glass partition and climbed their way up along the sides hoping their hands and shoes had enough traction to keep climbing. For Cassidy it was a little harder since the soles of her shoes were smoother, but she put as much of her strength as she could muster into her legs to compensate for the loss of traction. Soon they were both to the top and Zhane punched his way through the grating and into the ventilation shaft.
Cassidy tried to punch her way through but her strength was fading quickly. She was losing her grip and was in danger of falling back down. She almost did had Zhane not lifted the grating and grabbed Cassidy’s wrist as she was about ready to fall. Being away from the draining tubes allowed Zhane’s strength to come back slowly and he used what he had to pull Cassidy into the ducting. Soon both Rangers sat in the ventilation system slowly regaining their strength, and planning their next move. “So now what?” Cassidy asked.
“We get out of here.” Zhane stated then asked “Any ideas how?”
“We got here through some kind of portal.” Cassidy said. “All we need to do is find that, and we’re out of here.”
“Do you think we’ll get back to San Francisco?” Zhane asked.
“Right now. Anywhere is better than here.” Cassidy said smiling then she pointed down the ventilation shaft indicating which way to go. After quickly making their way over the ventilation ducts that held the tubes they crawled through the ducts and tried to find where the ducting ended, Hopefully by the portal system where the way out led.
A Centurion made his way back to the chamber looking to guard the Rangers as the tubes continued to drain their powers. When the Centurion entered the transference chamber his flashing red sensor looked at the tubes and found both of them empty. Looking at the ceiling the Centurion’s CPU and organic components deduced that they had escaped through the ventilation system, and quickly activated the intercom broadcasting his voice throughout the base.
“Security Alert!” the Centurion called. “The prisoners have escaped. Security Alert!”
When Circuit Breaker heard the Centurion’s broadcast, she was upset to say the least.
“Seal all exits!” Circuit Breaker ordered. “Deploy Centurions at the portal system. MAKE SURE THOSE RANGERS DON’T ESCAPE!” The Centurions were quick to obey, and to make things interesting she called in the Trilons as well.
Zhane and Cassidy had made their way out of the ventilation ducting and into the portal chamber just as the alert klaxons went off. “We don’t have a lot of time. Do you think you can get his thing running?” Cassidy asked.
“There’s the console, I’ll give it a shot.” Zhane said as he looked at the portal controls. He fingered the controls as heard the Cylons coming. He then went with his best guess and the portal activated. Cassidy made her way to the portal with Zhane following just as the Cylons entered the chamber.
“STOP!” Circuit Breaker shouted as she sent a shot of electricity in Zhane’s direction, and he was sent down to the ground. Cassidy turned to look at the fallen Zhane and wondered what she could do.
“ZHANE!!!” Cassidy shouted.
“GO GET OUT OF HERE!!!” he shouted to Cassidy as she turned back around and ran through the portal leaving Zhane, reluctantly, at the mercy of the Centurions, Circuit Breaker and Trilons. “I’ll be back!” Cassidy promised as the portal closed behind her taking her to safety.
Circuit Breaker then stood over Zhane with an expression on her face that was a cross between a smile and a glare. I guess I’ll have to deal with one of you instead of two.” She then ordered the Centurions to take Zhane back to the tubes where one of them would continue to drain his powers. As the tube drained Zhane again he said something he was sure would happen.
“Cassidy. I’ll see you again.”
The portal opened up in an alley in Chinatown. Cassidy appeared thrown to the ground and exhausted. The effects of the power drain and portal travel taking their toll on her.
“Got to get to Gaudeamas corp.” Cassidy said. “Laocorn will know what to do.” She then realized that she may not have that much strength left in her and that she needed a boost to get there. She then had an idea thinking that the powers could help her out.
“IT’S MORPHIN TIME!!!” she said calling up the Zeonizers and activating them. “ZEO RANGER VII!!SILVER!!!” The Silver Zeo Ranger stood with her strength returning a little bit, but she also knew that if she went out in Ranger garb then she would attract more attention than she wanted.
Silver Zeo saw a homeless old woman appear pushing her shopping cart dressed in an overcoat and shawl. Taking a link off her chain Silver Zeo offered it to her and said to take it to an exchange place. They would cash it in for her. The woman greatly offered her coat to Silver Zeo and she put it on over her Ranger uniform. It provided a lot of cover for her but she knew that there would be one more thing she would need. Taking another link off her chain she gave it to a vagrant in exchange for his hat. He too accepted and Silver Zeo placed it on her helmeted head.
She was now ready to make her way to Gaudeamas corp. But she would still have to take the back ways to get there. “Wow, I wonder how Alison’s doing with her night.” She thought out loud to herself again.
Elsewhere the battle between the Bogard and Kane brothers was well underway.
“ZAN EI KEN!!!” Andy cried at he charged Billy with his elbow extended. However, Billy used his bo staff to vault up into the air.
“Nice try mate. SOARING CRACKDOWN!!!” Billy came down at Andy with his cane spinning and Andy was barely able to avoid getting hit by the attack.”
~He’s gotten better since the last tournament, but then again so have I. ~ Andy thought to himself. He added. ~ But since when did Billy ever have a brother?~
Daniel was constantly charging on Terry trying to keep him on the defensive. He had knocked Terry down in his initial assault but Terry had gotten up before Daniel could kick him while he was down. He was starting to become aggravated that his opponent wasn’t putting up a good fight for him. “Fight back already! What’s your problem?” He then saw Terry going for jumping kick but then decide to block with this staff only that was just the set up.
“POWER DUNK!!!” Terry shouted as he leapt up with a knee extended and knocked Daniel upward. As he was starting to land he caught a glimpse of Terry driving a flaming fist at him, which nailed him the chest and sent him to the ground hard. Terry was landing on his feet.
“Argh! Damn you!” Daniel screamed as started to get up.
~What are they doing here to begin with? What’s Geese up to now?~ Terry thought as he was in a defensive stance.
Daniel was quick to get up and took an attack stance. Terry was surprised at the stance Daniel was in. “Wait. That fighting stance. It looks familiar.”
“It should.” Daniel replied. “But then I’m full of surprises.” Just then energy started to flow into Daniel and he set his sights on Terry as he prepared his next move.
“Let me show you what I know… Terry Bogard!” Daniel then started to started to focus his ki. ~ He’s going to get it now!~
Billy had shoved Andy back and turned his head to the fight and his eyes widened as he saw what Daniel was about to do and knew what TERRY was going to do. Before he could say anything though Andy came back at him and Billy had to worry about himself.
“Time to…” Daniel smirked ready to use his attack just as Terry’s fist was going to hit the ground.
“POWER WAVE!!!” Terry shouted and a golden wave of ki energy erupted from the ground and was rushing right at Daniel, who was caught in middle of his move. He hastily finished his attack to try to cancel out the Power Wave.
He was only partially successful.
Daniel was thrown back by the backlash of his attack intercepting the power wave. Billy quickly went to his brother’s side as Terry turned all his atttention to the other Kane brother.
“What are you doing here Billy?” Terry asked as Billy picked up his unconscious brother.
Before he could speak the saw a van coming at them and then stop behind the Bogards, who then turned around. Billy saw Andy open and was ready to strike with his bo in his free hand… unfortunately he was not having a good day.
“KA CHO SEN!!!”
“Damn!” Billy then threw Daniel down quick in order to use his bo to deflect Mai’s projectile. Those fans of hers could cut through solid steel and he didn’t feel like being hit by one.
“Just like you to get distracted by me Andy.” Mai teased her husband as he turned back to face the Kanes as did Terry and Mary was with him.
“So what are you doing here Billy?” Terry asked again.
“What?” Billy shrugged. “Is it a crime to try and pick a fight with your brother?”
“That all depends on certain things.” Mary then spoke.
Billy then picked his brother up and looked back at them all, “Well it really isn’t any of your business. But if you want to know why we came out here, well we really couldn’t wait for the tournament to take a crack at you Bogards. This year things are going to be different.”
“Oh. You decided not to partner up with a man that would turn the tables and utterly defeat you?” Terry smirked.
Billy Kane clenched his fist as he knew what he meant by the remark. “Screw you Terry. You are one lucky bastard you know that. Later you bloody yankes.” With that he took off with Daniel.
Andy looked at his brother. “Think we should go after them?”
“No. It’s not worth it right now Andy.” Terry replied.
“What were they doing here anyway? And since when does Billy Kane have a brother?” Andy asked.
Mai blinked. “A brother?”
“I don’t know.” Terry said. ~ Start to try to make some sense out of all of this. ~
Just then Blue Mary’s van roared up and everyone got out. Alison was quick to rush to Terry’s side and give her cousin a hug. “They gone?” she asked.
“Yeah.” Terry answered. “And at least one of my suspicions was true. Billy Kane was here.”
“Billy Kane?” Ashley asked. “Who’s he?”
“Someone who works for Geese Howard.” Terry could not help but say Geese’s name with a touch of malice due to all the pain he had caused Terry and his family. “But that’s not the weird part.”
“Yeah he’s got a brother now.” Andy added. “Someone named Daniel Kane.”
“When did Kane get a brother?” Mary asked.
“I don’t know.” Terry answered. “But I could have sworn I saw Daniel Kane’s fighting style before. Or at least something like it.” Alison was about to ask where but the Astro Rangers’ communicators went off. Andros was on the other line.
“This is T. J. I read you.”
“Rangers report to the co-ordinates being inputted to you. Silver Zeo is expected to be there.” Andros replied. Alison asked Ashley who was speaking, and Ashley was quick to answer.
“That’s Andros. He’s our leader.” Alison couldn’t help but notice the twinkle in Ashley’s eye when Andros’s name was mentioned. “You like him don’t you?”All Ashley did was smile, but Alison knew.
“Yeah you like him.” Alison answered then she looked at the co-ordinates and address that Andros told them to go-Gaudeamas Tower.
“Gaudeamas tower?” Alison asked. “Why there?
Andros heard the voice on the line and thought it was Ashley but Andros still replied. “Silver Zeo may be in trouble. Also Zhane has dissapeared. I’ve tried to contact him but have come up with nothing.”
Alison shot a look in Terry’s direction as if showing concern. Terry looked at Alison and she got out a whispered word. “Cassidy.” Right then Terry knew that Alison’s friend. Cassidy Bridges, was the new Silver Zeo Ranger.
“Go with them Alison.” Terry said as he looked to the Astros. “I think you might need her. Besides, I think the twins would like to get a chance to fight side by side.”
“You think it might come down to a fight?” Carlos asked.
“One never knows.” Terry answered. “But it doesn’t hurt to be prepared.” Alison then nodded and soon all the Astros made their way to Gaudeamas Tower thanks to mary offering them a ride. Terry and Andy watched as their young cousin ran with her sister and new friends.
“Think they’ll be alright?” Andy asked his brother.
Terry just smiled. “Definitely.”
The van containing the Astro Rangers quickly pulled into the main drive of the Gaudeamas corp building. All the Astros and Alison got out, and they all went inside. “Thanks Mary.” Alison said as the van drove off. Before that two other kids had arrived. One with brown and blonde striped hair, and the other with dark hair and attractive features.
Not far away sitting in a 1971 Plymouth Hemicuda was Nash Bridges with his first ex-wife Lisa. They watched the Astros get out and head in. “What’s Alison doing at Gaudeamas tower?” Lisa asked. “And what are those two looking for Cassidy doing there as well?”
“I don’t know, but here comes some more.” Nash answered as he saw the Zeo Rangers also walk into the main entrance to Gaudeamas tower not long after the Astro Rangers did.
“I don’t believe it. All these kids? Is there a convention?” Lisa asked sarcastically.
“May as well be.” Nash answered. “And was Cassidy invited?”
“Well let’s wait and see.” Lisa answered, which raised Nash’s eyebrow. He had never known Lisa to wait on anything. She had always been a ‘get-up-and-go’ kind of person. Lisa caught the look and added “What? You don’t think I can wait?”
Nash didn’t answer as his eyes focused on someone in a trenchcoat entering the building. Nash couldn’t make out who was in the coat since all the person’s features were covered. “Who’s that?” Lisa asked as the figure in the trenchcoat entered the Gaudeamas building.
“I don’t know Lise.” Nash answered. “But this is really getting weird.”
All roads were now leading to the Gaudeamas corporation. The Astro Rangers, the Zeo Rangers, even Alison made their way there. All to find the Silver Zeo Ranger, and the Silver Astro Ranger.
Andros and Sabrina then turned as they heard the rest of the Astros coming to them however now they were both starting at doubles. Of Ashley that was.
“Uhh hello.” Andros said to Alison.
“Hello yourself.” Alison said who then said to Ashley “This is the guy you’re interested in? Wow! What a hottie.”
Ashley couldn’t help but snicker at Alison’s little remark. “Anything from Zhane yet?”
“Nothing.” Sabrina said. “We heard that the Silver Zeo Ranger would be here, and we assumed that Zhane might be here as well.
“Guys. Looks like we aren’t the only ones following a hunch.” Carlos said pointing over to a certain group of people outside that were coming in through the main entrance.
“The Zeo Rangers…” Sabrina muttered as she then ducked behind a pillar.
“What are you doing?” TJ asked.
“Um let’s see here Teej. I was once a upon a time one of the Rangers’ worst adversaries, I nearly killed them in battle twice, and Thomas and Adam make up almost half of their numbers. Now do I look like I want to face them right now?”
“Wait a minute. You were one of the Rangers enemies?” Alison asked. “And now you are running with Rangers? What’s wrong with this picture?”
“It’s a long story.” Andros interrupted Alison before she could talk further. He then looked at Sabrina. “Keep hidden if that’s what you want but if we have to morph and fight don’t hide. Sooner or later Sabrina you are going to have to face them.”
“As Sun Tzu would advise, fight your battles when you feel you can win.” Sabrina replied staying hidden behind the pillar. “Earther or not, that man happens to be one of the wisest beings in the art of war that I have ever read about.”
“Well looks like we are going to be coming face to face with them.” Cassie said as the Zeo Rangers had spotted them.
“Wonder how they’ll react to meeting another ranger team they didn’t even know even existed?” Ashley mused.
They didn’t have long to wonder as the Zeo Rangers entered the lobby of the Gaudeamas building and came face to face with the Astro Rangers. Andros was the first to make introductions. “Greetings my name is Andros. I’m the leader of the Astro Rangers.” Andros extended his hand and Tommy shook it.
“My name is Tommy Oliver. I’m the leader of Zeo Team I. And believe it or not, we’ve met before.”
T. J. was surprised to hear this. “We’ve already met?When?”
“Well actually we met versions of you during the I. D. War. You guys and our counterparts were bonded to Transformers where we all were the heads, guns and engines of them. Long story. Oh by the way, I’m Rocky DeSantos, Blue Zeo.” Rocky offered his own hand out and T. J. took it. Soon the other Zeos introduced themselves.
“Samantha Jones, Yellow Zeo.”
“Katherine Hillard, Pink Zeo.”
“Adam Park, Green Zeo.”
From behind the pillar Sabrina looked on at Adam. When she saw him her heart started to flutter. She so wanted to go out there and say that she loved him, but she wondered who Adam would see: Sabrina seeking redemption, or the evil Scorpina who fought the Rangers at every turn.
The Astro Rangers then introduced themselves. Andros was first. “Andros Lanrydan, Red Astro.”
“Ashley Hammond, Yellow Astro.”
“Cassie Chan, Pink Astro.”
“T. J. Andrews, Blue Astro.”
“Carlos Garcia, Blue Astro.”
“Alison Bogard, No Astro.” Alison smirked at her little joke that all the Rangers picked up on. Just then Adam recognized Carlos and Ashley. “Wait, don’t you two go to Angel Grove High?
“Yeah. I’m on the soccer team.” Carlos said.
“I’m head cheerleader.” Ashley said. “Wait, you’re Carlos’s coach aren’t you?
“Yeah, you coached me for a few games, then you weren’t there for a while. You said that winning wasn’t everything and that I should focus on having fun and allowing the rest of the team to play as well.” Carlos said. Adam nodded as if saying that he was right.
“And you seem to have learned the value of teamwork, in more ways than one.” Adam pointed at the morpher on Carlos’s wrist and Carlos couldn’t help but smile modestly.
Kat noticed that two of the Astro Rangers were not present. “Forgive me for asking, but where are your Gold and Silver Astro Rangers?” she asked.
“Gold Astro isï¿½nearby.” Andros answered. “Silver Astro is missing right now. He’s searching for your Silver Zeo Ranger. It is believed that she helped revive our Silver Astro from a cryotube that was healing his injuries. We assumed thaqt he’d be here since it was said that Silver Zeo was coming here.”
“We heard the same.” Tommy answered. “But I haven’t heard anything from them either.” Both teams were wondering what to do next when Samantha pointed out a morphed figure coming in through the revolving screen door.
“Look it’s Silver Zeo!” Samantha said. Silver Zeo stood morphed but barely standing. In fact when she was through the door she immediately fell to her knees exhausted. Both teams rushed to her side.
“You all right?” Tommy asked.
Silver Zeo nodded. “Give me a minute. I need to build up my power again.” Silver Zeo wondered about the mess of teens helping her when she saw Alison off to the side mouthing ‘Rangers. These guys are your teammates.’ As she pointed to the Zeos. Beneath the helmet Cassidy understood and looked at the Zeo Rangers.
“I need your help.” Silver Zeo said. “The Silver Astro Ranger has been captured, and the Cylons are looking to drain his powers. We’ve got to rescue him.”
“Where is he?” Andros said coming over to Silver Zeo’s side along with the other Astros.
“An underground complex.” She said. “I used a portal to escape from there. I can show you where it is.” The Zeos, Astros, and Alison wasted no time following Silver Zeo to where the portal that let her out was. Sabrina quickly followed when they were all out the door.
On the top floor Laocorn watched the exchange between the Rangers. At least he figured them to be the Rangers when Silver Zeo had arrived. And when they left Laocorn’s suspicions were confirmed.
“Panni, have a security unit track them. But maintain a safe distance.” He ordered.
“Yes my lord. Will you want me and the other Elementals there when the Rangers arrive at their destination?”
“No.” Laocorn said. “I have someone else in mind. “Laocorn then picked up the phone and made a call. The person on the other end answered and Laocorn told them “The Rangers are being followed by a security unit. They will tell you when they arrive at their destination.”
“Thanks.” Tyler Oliver said on the other line and hung up getting ready to gather his troops.
Now all Laocorn could do was wait and pray.
After a long while Circuit Breaker walked into the chamber where Zhane was on his knees as his power was being drained from him. She then noticed the other chamber that was supposed to contain Cassidy but it was empty. ~ Escaped. ~ she thought with malice. She so wanted to make Jessie’s replacement suffer, but now she would make Zhane suffer.
“You know, if your silver girlfriend had stuck around you wouldn’t be getting all this pain.” She said as she looked at Zhane who was barely conscious. “I guess one Silver Ranger is better than none. Also this means any suffering you go through is on your girlfriend’s head, since she couldn’t stick around to help you..” Circuit Breaker sneered as she looked at the Psycho Silver morpher on the console. It’s glow almost complete. Soon it would be completely full, and the Silver Astro would be either powerless, dead, or both.
But Circuit Breaker did not care. Zhane was a Ranger. What was a Ranger to one who was a sworn enemy to them?
Outside Nash and Lisa were sitting and waiting in the ‘Cuda as the Astro and Zeo Rangers ran out of the Gaudeamas Corp building “Nash? What’s going on? Do we follow?” Lisa asked,
“If they come back, we go in.” Nash said as they watched two Ranger teams and Alison Bogard leave Gaudeamas tower for where Silver Zeo said Zhane was. Quickly followed by Sabrina.
Soon everyone had made their way to the place where Silver Zeo had escaped. “Is this the place?” Tommy asked.
“Positive.” Silver Zeo explained. “This is where the portal let me out.”
“Alright. We’d better morph. IT’S MORPHIN TIME!!!”
“ZEO RANGER I-PINK!!!”
“ZEO RANGER II-YELLOW!!!”
“ZEO RANGER III-BLUE!!!”
“ZEO RANGER IV-GREEN!!!”
“ZEO RANGER V-RED!!!”
The Zeos and Astros all stood ready to enter, and soon Gold Astro jumped from the tallest building landing by the Rangers. “I’ve checked around. There’s no sign of any sentries that I can detect.” Red Astro nodded but Red and Green Zeo looked at Gold Astro and couldn’t help but sense something about her. Something familiar.
“Cassie, can you detect any portal traces that we could use to find a way into the base?” Red Astro asked. Pink Astro nodded saying that she could try and activated her sensors. Sure enough there were some portal traces that were still frequent and Red Astro sent the readings to the Astro Megaship where DECA began processing them.
“Frequency locked. Co-ordinates obtained. Ready to begin teleportation into enemy stronghold.” All the Rangers and Alison made ready to be teleported and soon they felt the teleport effect take hold and transport them into the Cylon stronghold.
When they were inside they wondered which way to go next. Silver Zeo pointed down a hall saying “Last I saw him he was that way?”
Blue Zeo then asked “Do you have any idea who’s behind all this? The attacks? The kidnappings?” Silver Zeo reluctantly answered.
“It was Josie Belle. My predecessor’s sister.” She said straight out. The Zeos couldn’t believe their ears. And none of them knew what to say.
“Josie?” Blue Zeo asked in surprise.
“That’s impossible. Josie Belle is an invalid.” Pink Zeo had said.
“Not to mention that she wouldn’t do something like this.” Green Zeo added. “I mean sure she might not care for us, but to attack a city? This is so not like her.”
“Well when I saw her she was walking, and had a real mad on for Rangers, especially me. She seems to be a few chips short of a game system if you know what I mean. Hates me for getting her sister’s powers, and hates you for letting her die and putting Josie herself in a wheelchair.” Sliver Zeo explained. “She’s also responsible for the Cylons attacking as well.”
Blue Zeo couldn’t believe what he was hearing. Josie, Jessica’s sister, had ordered a massacre of a whole city. She was torturing Rangers, and stealing their powers. “Doesn’t she know what she’s doing?” Red Astro asked.
“She just may.” Gold Astro answered. “The worst part of it is she may be beyond caring.”
Blue Zeo was still trying to comprehend the massive change Josie Belle had apparently undergone. “I don’t understand. I know Josie was angry for her sister’s death, but when did she get this power? And how did she get these troops?”
“I don’t know, but we’d better find out.” Red Zeo had said and soon they made their way down the corridors, but Blue Zeo was still trying to process all that he had heard.
“You okay?” Yellow Zeo asked Blue.
“Yeah.” Blue Zeo said. “Just thinking about when all this started. Back when we were on the rig.” The other Zeos nodded as they also remembered the time when the Belle’s troubles began.
And what happened after they faced Prince Grommet.
Blackrock Oil Rig/Refinery-1986
The flagship of Prince Grommet continued to attack the installation. Cogs were getting ready to board and take all it had to offer for the Machine Empire.
Even the Rangers were brought on board. Grommet had hoped that they would be easily subdued and the Zeo Powers taken. He wasn’t sure how the crystal escaped confinement, but he planned to make sure the Zeo Powers were put to use, for himself.
“Welcome Rangers.” A voice said from around the room. “Permit me to introduce myself. I am Prince Grommet. Rightful heir to the Machine Empire.”
Red Zeo looked around and shouted “Where are you?Show yourself!”
“I am currently indisposed right now conquering the structure before me.” Grommet said making reference to the rig/refinery before him. Blue Zeo however was seething under his helmet and was ready to lunge at the speaker.
“YOU MONSTER!!! IT WAS YOU!!! YOU STARTED ALL THIS!!!!” he shouted in defiance. Grommet sounded taken aback by Blue Zeo’s statement wondering what he was talking about, but in the end it didn’t matter. He was about to take the refinery, and was about to take the Zeo Powers as well.
“I’d almost be curious as to wonder what you are talking about but I have other concerns right now.” Just then the doors to the transport bay had opened and an army of cogs stood waiting. Then on Grommet’s order the Cogs rushed towards the Zeo Rangers.
“All right guys. Let’s get ready!” Red Zeo said getting in a fighting stance, but Yellow Zeo had an idea. “Tommy we won’t be able to fight through all these Cogs. We have to fight smarter than that.”
“What’s up Samantha? You got an idea?” Green Zeo asked. Yellow Zeo nodded and as soon as she told of her idea everyone else agreed. Blue and Yellow then got on their hands and knees while Red Zeo got a running start, jumped up, used the other two Rangers as a springboard and flew over the army of cogs landing on the other side.
“Okay Kat. You’re next!” Red Zeo called out to Pink. She also did the same running start, springboard and flew over the cogs to land alongside Red Zeo. Green Zeo quickly followed, and soon it was Blue and Yellow left behind. “Need a lift?” Yellow asked as the locked her hands together into a step for Blue Zeo to fly off of, and soon he was on the other side leaving Yellow Zeo behind.
“Samantha come on!” Pink Zeo shouted. The other teammates called out “Come on! Come on!” as well. Samantha nodded and soon made ready for her big cross over. Taking out her Zeo Power Whip she lashed around a rafter and climbed up, then she unlashed the whip and let herself fall towards the Cogs below. The Cogs wondered what she was doing until she landed on one Cogs shoulder and did a flip over some others. Yellow Zeo then landed on another Cog’s shoulders and walked on the other Cogs to make it to the other side where the exit was.
“Nice move.” Pink Zeo said to Yellow.
“Thanks I thought so.” Yellow answered.
The door opened and the Rangers made their way out of the holding bay. Blue Zeo quickly closed the door and then blasted the lock with his Zeo pistol. “That ought to hold them for a while.”
“All right, we need to get to the Bridge and Engineering. See if we can stop this thing.” Red Zeo said. Blue Zeo was quick to volunteer to go to the bridge, while Red knew it would be a good thing to keep Blue Zeo close by.
“All right Kat, you’ll come with Rocky and me.” Red turned to Yellow and Green and said “Samantha, Adam, you find the engine room and see if you can shut this thing down.”
“You got it Tommy.” Green Zeo said as he and Yellow Zeo made their way down the corridor to engineering. Blue Zeo was already making his way down the other corridor heading towards the bridge with Red and Pink in pursuit.
He had a bone to pick with Grommet whether the Machine Prince knew it or not. And no one was going to stop him.
On the bridge of his ship Grommet saw his security forces held in the holding bay, and the Rangers advancing towards the key areas of the ship. One of them was approaching the bridge.
“All remaining Cogs! Protect the bridge and engineering. Do not let the intruders pass! This is a royal command!” Sure enough, all remaining Cogs assembled to protect the areas the prince ordered protected. He would not allow the Rangers to get to the ship systems, or to him.
Grommet thought he could relax now that the Cogs were protecting him. But as the Rangers approached he found he couldn’t be more wrong.
Sure enough the corridor to the bridge was heavily guarded. Cogs were guarding the entrance ready to let no one pass.
But that wouldn’t stop the Zeo Rangers who already had their weapons drawn. The Zeo Power sword, Pink Zeo Shield, and Zeo Power Lance all stood ready for action. The wielders of the weapons, more driven than the Cogs would ever be.
The Zeo Rangers tore through the Cogs like a force of nature looking to destroy anything in their path. They refused to be deterred. They refused to be stopped, especially Blue Zeo who had a personal stake in this mission. He looked to find Prince Grommet, and make him pay for the actions he was now taking. Not just for Jessie’s sake, but for Josie’s as well.
Every Cog he saw was Grommet. Every Cog had Grommet’s face. Every blow he gave was against Grommet. Blue Zeo fought on, like the Red and Pink Zeos did until there were no Cogs left.
“Looks like we’re almost done.” Pink Zeo said.
“Not quite. There’s still Grommet.” Blue Zeo stated as he continued on like a man who was driven. He was going to get to Grommet, and no one was going to stop him. Red and Pink quickly followed and hoped their teammate wouldn’t do something he would later regret.
Green and Yellow Zeo had made their way to the engine room looking up at the massive engine before them. It looked like a giant dynamo spinning and spinning with four towers on each side of it that looked like stalactites in a cave. Four others protruded from the floor looking like stalagmites. “Those must be the stablizers.” Yellow Zeo said.
“All we need to do is take out one and the rest should follow.” Green Zeo said drawing out his Zeo Blaster ready to take aim on the uppermost stabilizer. However, before he took the shot, another army of Cogs appeared ready to stop them.
“Oh great. More trouble.” Yellow Zeo said as she and Green Zeo fought off the approaching Cogs. They seemed to be doing well enough, but the number of Cogs in the Engineering section continued to grow and grow. If they didn’t take a shot now, they never would. Even a shot in the dark was better than nothing.
“SAMANTHA FIRE!!!” Green Zeo shouted. After fighting through a pile of Cogs in order to draw out and aim her Zeo blaster, Yellow Zeo squeezed off a shot, which hit an upper stabilizer dead on. An explosion erupted from one section of the stabilizer sending out smaller explosions and electrical shorts throughout the chamber. An explosion which was starting to affect the other stablizers, as well as the engine core itself.
The chain reaction continued as the apparatus destroyed itself piece by piece.
No one was willing to wait to be caught in the explosion, especially Green and Yellow Zeo, who ducked out quickly. The Cogs however weren’t so lucky as they were caught in the maze of shorting systems and falling debris. The ship was dying and soon everyone had to get off.
“We’d better contact Tommy and the others. Warn them.” Yellow Zeo said.
“Agreed.” Green added and he activated his communicator.
Grommet looked at the monitors as his Cogs were losing. “More security! Repeat! More Cogs report to bridge and engineering!” The order however came too late.
The bridge doors had exploded outward and the bridge Cogs immediately went to their prince’s aid. The Zeos however were prepared and immediately struck down the Cogs with their Zeo weapons until none remained. None except for Grommet.
Blue Zeo looked at Grommet, crossing around his command seat glaring at the Machine Prince. “So you’re the one.” Blue Zeo said with a measure of disgust.
“The one? What are you talking about?” Grommet asked confused.
“The one who started this whole mess. With Josie getting paralyzed. Jessie taking her powers, and her being killed! It was all because of you!” Blue Zeo brought up his Zeo blaster and leveled it at Grommet. Pink Zeo then rushed to blue’s side trying to tell him not to fire.
“Rocky he doesn’t know!” Pink Zeo shouted. “Don’t do it!”
“DO YOU THINK I CARE KAT?!” Blue Zeo shouted. “How much suffering has thisï¿½thing brought on everyone? How much has he yet to bring?”
“Rocky if you kill him, you’ll be no better than him.” Red Zeo said. “Put the gun down.” Blue Zeo continued to glare at Grommet holding the blaster steady. “Put it down.” Red Zeo repeated, with a little more sternness in his voice.
Blue Zeo put the blaster down slowly, but never taking his eyes off of Prince Grommet. Just then the intercom activated and Yellow Zeo’s voice echoed through the loudspeaker. “Guys we had better get off now.”
Pink Zeo asked “Huh? How come?”
Green Zeo then spoke up. “Becauseï¿½in about one minuteï¿½THE STABLIZERS ARE GOING TO BLOW UP!!!”
“That’s our exit cue I guess.” Red Zeo said. “All right Adam, you and Samantha get off the ship. We’ll be right behind you!” Sure enough Green and Yellow Zeo found an escape hatch and jumped into the ocean water below. Red, Pink and Yellow Zeo also found an empty hatch on the bridge and jumped leaving Grommet behind.
“Hah! If you think I am going to risk rust and corrosion by jumping into that water you are sorely mistaken.” Grommet made his way to the side of the bridge where the escape pods were located. Climbing into one he activated the launch sequence which would take him away from the falling ship and to safety. However there was one problem, the circuitry of the pods was shorted due to the damage the ship sustained when the stabilizers exploded. Every system started to crash in systemic order, leaving Grommet trapped on a dying ship.
“Escape pod non-operational!” the computer said. If Grommet could have looked shocked he would have.
For he was trapped on his own vessel.
A vessel that was going to crash into the sea.
Rescue efforts were quickly made to retrieve the Zeo Rangers from the ocean, as life rafts made their way out to their locations. Their uniforms were soaking wet, but they were grateful for the rescue. Then everyone turned up towards the sky as they heard the boom that could only mean one thing.
Up in the sky the ship started to explode. The destruction of the stabilizers was evident as the fiery clouds erupted and the ship started listing, then fell into the sea. When the rafts made their way back to the rig the Rangers were offered blankets to dry off with and G. B. Blackrock walked up to them ready to congratulate the Zeo Rangers for their valiant efforts.
“It’s no problem Mr. Blackrock. We’re just happy to help.” Red Zeo said.
Blue Zeo then stepped forward and asked the question foremost on his mind. “Was anyone else hurt?”
Blackrock sighed knowing what the answer to the question was, but said nothing. He then turned to the left and saw Mr. and Mrs. Belle holding their daughter Josie in their arms. Her limp form dropped down like a marionette with its strings cut. Tears were in both the parents’ eyes, and little Jessie also stood with them. Her eyes brimming with tears. But unlike her parents Jessie, expressed her emotions freely.
Everyone looked on in surprise, shock and sorrow as they saw the little girl unconscious, and badly burned by the electric shock she took in the control booth. But no one’s sorrow was like that of Blue Zeo’s who realized that he missed his chance to save the Belle family from the disastrous destiny that was to befall them. More importantly, the destiny that was to befall Jessie.
Blue Zeo looked at the little girl being lifted into the ambulance along with her parents and sister. Under his breath he said “I’m sorry Jessie. I tried.”
After an hour rescue ships and helicopters had arrived at the rig and were seeing to rescue efforts for the workers. G. B. Blackrock called his corporate offices to call for an engineering team to strip the rig of whatever technology remained. He was going to close the rig down. Somehow it didn’t seem right to continue to operate it, especially since so many had been injured, or died in Grommet’s attack.
The Zeo Rangers appeared to have left, but actually they didn’t go to far. Only to the TARDIS which was safely hidden away where dry clothes waited for them. Rocky however stayed outside watching as a rescue chopper landed on the ruined chopper pad. It’s passenger being loaded on board.
Rocky looked at Josie Belle being airlifted onto the medical chopper. Mr. and Mrs. Belle, as well as little Jessica boarded the helicopter with Josie Belle trying to make her comfortable. As the chopper took of into the ocean sky Rocky felt the tears form in his eyes, and he let them fall freely.
“It’s not right.” Rocky said. “They were innocent. They didn’t deserve this.”
“I know Rocky.” The Doctor came up and tried to be supportive but it seemed like it was going to fall on deaf ears. “Evil doesn’t care about innocent or guilt. It only benefits one, or a select few of individuals, and usually it’s done at another’s expense. In this case, it was at the Belles'”
“But their future. We know what’s going to happen. Josie will only become more and more bitter, and Jessie willï¿½” Tears fell down Rocky’s face even more as he knew what Jessica’s fate would be. And he knew it was not fair.
But little did any of the Rangers know what the full consequences of what happened here would be.
“And now we know.” Blue Zeo said looking at the Cylon base they were walking into. The base of creatures who want nothing more than the extermination of humanity.
The creatures Josie Belle allied herself with. And the more Blue Zeo thought about it, the more it didn’t make sense to him. “How could she do this? How could she do all of this?”
“Because someone gave me the chance to.” A voice said in the corridor the Rangers were all in. A voice that belonged to who was once Josie Belle.
A voice that belonged to who was now Circuit Breaker.
“Hello Rangers.” She said over the loudspeaker. All the Rangers looked up to see where she could be, yet they could find nothing.
“Josie.” Red Zeo said. “Why are you doing this?”
“You dare ask me that?” Circuit Breaker answered. “After I was paralyzed because of you? After my sister was killed because of you? You dare to ask me that?!” Streams of electricity streamed out from everywhere and hit the Rangers dead on sending shocks and explosions all over their suits. Next thing that happened Circuit Breaker hovered over to the fallen Rangers as if she was a dark angel looking to pass judgement on condemned souls.
“I connected myself to electro generators all around the area.” Circuit Breaker explained. “They were enough to knock you all down so I could do this!” She then drove her foot down Blue Zeo’s back reaggravating his old injury. She then kicked Pink and Yellow Zeo in the chest, and took liberties with all the other Rangers from Zeo to Astro. Whether kicking, punching, or whatever she wanted to do to them not allowing them to get in any form of attack until she finally came to Silver Zeo.
“And now, you.” Circuit Breaker said looking down at a further weakened Silver Zeo. “You’re a disgrace to that uniform and those powers. They should be mine, and they will be again.”
“Don’t count on it bitch!” said a voice from behind. Circuit Breaker turned around and saw a sneakered foot come her way giving off a bluish glow. “CRACK SHOT!!!” she shouted hitting Circuit Breaker square in the chest. Circuit Breaker was knocked back down to the ground and Alison Bogard was standing over her trying to help Silver Zeo up.
Gold Astro also came in looking to see if the other Rangers were all right. Sure enough they were recovering, but Red and Blue Zeo seemed to notice the extra special care she was giving to Green Zeo. Green Zeo looked at Gold Astro as if thanking her but also that she not dot over him so much.
“I’m sorry.” Gold Astro said. “I guess I just got a little concerned for you.” Green Zeo was about to say it was all right when he heard Gold Astro’s voice. It seemed so familiar to him. As if he had known her from somewhere.
“Do I know you?” Green Zeo asked. Gold Astro however didn’t have the chance to answer that question. Circuit Breaker had other plans.
“Well then. Since you are all up. Maybe I should introduce you to my guests.” As she finished her sentence red lights came in from the shadows bouncing back and forth. Some of them even in a ‘Y’ shape. The Rangers knew this could only mean one thing.
Vulpa II came forward and took the lead. Centurions and Trilons followed his lead. “We await your orders.” Vulpa II had said.
Circuit Breaker looked at the Rangers and Alison with a maddening glare as she gave her next command. “Let the attack begin.”
“By your command.” Vulpa said then he gave the order for the Centurions and Trilons to move in. The Rangers were soon on the defensive as the Cylons approached. Vulpa however hung back.
The Centurions were first. Their blasters were brought to bear against the Rangers who sought to dodge the incoming fire, but some shots found their mark. Black Astro was struck down first, followed by Pink Astro, then Blue Zeo fell. Circuit Breaker noticed the irony of Blue Zeo falling to the troops she had commanded, ~ Since it was his and my sister’s relationship that led to her death. ~ she thought to herself.
Red and Yellow Astro stayed close. Yellow used her Star Slinger while Red used the Spiral Saber against approaching Cylons. Not far away Alison and Blue Astro were fighting off Centurions.
Among the Zeos Red and Pink fought together while Green Zeo fought alongside Gold Astro. Green Zeo felt an unease about fighting with Gold Astro, largely because he felt a familiarity about her.
Silver Zeo was still standing, but she seemed to be moving sluggishly as she still felt the effects of the power drain. Yellow Zeo was quick to get to her side and use her whip to drive back approaching Cylons. “Are you all right?” Yellow asked Silver.
“Just the effects of a power drain. I should be okay.” Silver said as she then unclasped her chain which seemed to charge up with Silver energy and then threw it at the approaching Centurions releasing a power wave that cut through the Centurions like butter. Soon the Cylons fell to the ground. The Rangers stood triumphant over the first wave.
However they still had the second to deal with-the Trilons.
And they were more deadly than the conventional Centurion, as three Trilons looked to gang up on Green Zeo first.
“ADAM LOOK OUT!!!” Gold Astro shouted as she shoved Green Zeo out of the Trilon ambush and took the brunt of the blaster fire which sent her flying back into a wall causing her to demorph.
Green Zeo was surprised to hear the Gold Astro mention his name, but didn’t have time to think about it as the Zeos covered the Astros as they rushed to attend their fallen teammate. Alison and Blue Astro stayed in the battle refusing to let the Zeos and Astros fight alone.
“Ashley how is she?” Red Astro asked.
“I’m fine Andy… just tell me if Ad… Green Zeo is alright…” Sabrina muttered. Yellow Astro nodded. “Good… go kick the crap of those Cylons okay… just be careful. They are a pain in the ass with those blasters. I’ll back up to fighting strength in five to ten minutes. My healing system is a lot more advanced than yours.”
“Cassie. Carlos. Stay here and cover her until she’s up on her feet again.” Red Astro said.
“Got it Andros.” Black Astro said.
Alison looked at Red Astro as he and Yellow Astro rejoined the fight. “This isn’t exactly how you wanted to get yourselves introduced to the other Ranger teams is it?”
“No… but then again at least we have an excuse if that witch S’Hera ever hears about this.” at Alison’s confused look Yellow Astro said. “Long story. Fill you in later.” Alison nodded to her sister.
“If there is a later.” Alison had said. No one had a problem wondering what she meant by that.
The Trilons were more advanced than the average Centurion. They moved faster, had quicker reflexes, and better targeting as the Rangers all tried to get in shots at the Trilons. Shots that missed, but when the Trilons fired their weapons each one seemed to hit their mark. Pink Zeo was first to fall, followed by Yellow. Yellow Astro took a shot for Alison sending her down.
“ASHLEY!!!” Red Zeo shouted.
“I got her.” Alison said as she moved to her sister’s side. But as a Trilon was starting to bear down on her Silver Zeo ran infront of the blaster bolt and took a shot meant for Alison. Fortuntely she was nearby Ashley who was recovering herself so Alison could check on both of them.
Yellow Astro said she would only need a minute so Alison went to check on Silver Zeo. “Cass you all right?” Alison asked her friend.
“Well, I’m surprised I haven’t demorphed yet, so there’s a plus. But I really wish daddy was here. He’d know what to do.” Silver Zeo explained.
“Sorry. No Nash here.” Alison said then sighed as she added. “No Terry either.” Red Zeo and Red Astro looked at their forces falling and saw Circuit Breaker looking down on them. “Soon Rangers. Soon it will be all over for you.” She sneered.
“And then what Josie?” Red Zeo asked. “When you finish with us, what will you do next?”
This gave Circuit Breaker a moment of pause. True she hadn’t thought that far in advance, all she was concerned with was the Rangers and her revenge on them, but now she had that moment. And Red Zeo hoped that would give the other Rangers time to recover and maybe hope Josie would reconsider her actions. However the recovery time wasn’t long as Circuit Breaker felt a presence comfort her, sooth her, reassure her that everything would be all right. ~ I will take care of you. Do what you have to do. ~ was what it said, and Circuit Breaker believed it.
Circuit Breaker had her answer. “As long as all of you are destroyed it doesn’t matter.” The Trilons then resumed their advance and the Rangers realized that they were outmatched greatly.
“We need some back up!” Red Zeo had said as the Trilons were moving in.
“Ask and you shall receive.” Said a voice from the corridor. Next thing everyone knew the Outsiders had ran in and joined the fray.
Zeo Shadow, Zeo Psi, Zeo Phoenix, Zeo Ranger, Zeo Blade, Zeo Punk, Chelsea and Zeo Knight all ran in to fortify the two Ranger teams. Circuit Breaker was shocked and asked “Where did you Rangers come from?”
“That’s our question too.” Red Zeo said. “Not that I’m complaining though.”
“Laocorn saw you guys come into his office then leave. He figured something had to be up so he asked us to follow you.” Zeo Knight had explained.
“Well then I’ll have to thank him, once we see him.” Red Zeo had said.
“Yeah you’d better.” Alison said with an edge to her voice. Silver Zeo again wondered what Alison meant when she just said “I’ll explain later.”
“All right. Let’s kick these tin heads’ asses.” Zeo Punk said standing beside Yellow Zeo. Soon everyone was picking their partners. Red Zeo and Zeo Shadow paired together. Zeo Phoenix and Blue Zeo were paired up. Zeo Knight and Red Astro were going to fight together. Chelsea and Pink Zeo were paired together. Yellow Astro, Alison and Silver Zeo formed a three way team. Gold Astro went to pair up with Green Zeo. Zeo Blade paired up with Blue Astro, as Blue Astro admired Zeo Blade’s sword. “Nice sword.” He said.
“Thanks.” Zeo Blade said. “I’m kind of attached to it.”
Zeo Psi paired up with Pink Astro while Black Astro paired up with Zeo Ranger. Now everyone was ready to face the Trilons.
Yellow Zeo used her Zeo Power whip to slash through the Trilons in her path while Zeo Punk just went for the direct bash to the face. Each punch was directed at the central point of the Trilon’s face where it’s sensor lights intersected. The Trilons were momentarily blinded by Zeo Punk’s strikes, then she drew her blaster out and shot her Trilons down. Yellow Zeo then had an idea and she shared it with her cousin.
“Hey Terry. Have you ever heard of the show ‘Bowling for Dollars?'” Yellow Zeo asked pointing to an assembly of twelve Trilons in their path.
Zeo Punk smirked under her helmet getting her cousin’s idea. After getting a running start she charged at the Trilons gaining as much speed as she could then called out “ZEO HEAD RAM!!!”. Zeo energy then charged through her helmet and upon impact all but one of the Trilons scattered like bowling pins. Zeo Punk charged so fast the Trilons had no time to react.
“And Samantha Jones comes in to pick up the spare.” Yellow Zeo said coming to bear on the last Trilon. “ZEO POWER PUNCH!!!” Yellow Zeo brought up her punch to the last Trilon and it was soon knocked back. Yellow Zeo and Zeo Punk each high fived one another as their opponents got beat.
Zeo Psi and Pink Astro didn’t have much time to get acquainted but Zeo Psi did have enough time to ask about the Sattellite Stunner and come up with a plan to use it. “I’ll set them up you knock them down.”
Pink Astro didn’t have time to ask what Zeo Psi meant until the Trilons found themselves lifted off the ground into the air. This allowed Pink Astro to get in her shot. “SATTELITE STUNNER!!!” she shouted. Soon their Trilons were knocked out and came crashing to the ground. “Like ducks in a shooting gallery.” She said standing over defeated Trilons.
Black Astro and Zeo Ranger looked at their Trilons as Zeo Ranger calculated a plan to deal with them. When completed he relayed the plan to Black Astro who nodded.
“ZEO WRIST BLASTER!!!” Zeo Ranger shouted as a weapon appeared on Zeo Ranger’s arm. A few shots struck down a few of the Trilons and allowed Black Astro to get in the final shots with his Astro Axe. A few quick strikes and Zeo Ranger and Black Astro stood victorious. “Next?” Black Astro asked in jest.
Zeo Blade and Blue Astro were paired together. Zeo Blade kept her blade even as the Trilons locked onto her with their blasters. “Fire!” the lead Trilon ordered, and they did so. Blue Astro continued to dodge the bolts while Zeo Blade seemed to stand and absorb the laser blasts the Trilons fired. Blue Astro wondered if Zeo Blade was perhaps crazy, but then noticed the purple glow around her.
“What the hell?” Blue Astro asked. He then got his answer as Zeo Blade cut through the Trilons like butter with her blade, as the energy empowered her. Soon all that remained of their Trilons was scrap.
“Whoa!” Blue Astro said.
“Thanks.” Zeo Blade answered.
Chelsea and Zeo Pink fought with Chelsea making strikes with her energy blade, cutting off the Trilon’s firing hands with Pink Zeo knocking them down with her satellite stunner. As they fought Chelsea had struck up some conversation with her fighting partner.
“So how are you doing Kat?” Chelsea asked.
“If you mean have I found someone new yet after Tommy the answer is no.” Pink Zeo answered. “Of course I haven’t had much time to look either.”
“Not even David?” Chelsea asked. “I would have thought you two would hit it off.”
“As if I’ve had time to ask him.” Pink Zeo said.
“I know what you mean.” Chelsea answered. “I haven’t been interested in anyone sinceï¿½Trey.” Chelsea said with a twinge of sadness which almost allowed a Trilon to get the jump on her. Almost.
Chelsea then turned around and ran her energy blade through the Trilon’s torso and then slashed the torso from the inside out. Turning back to Kat Chelsea said “Don’t worry. There’s someone for everyone out there.”
“Let me know when you find mine will you?” Pink Zeo asked in jest. Chelsea couldn’t help but smirk at Pink Zeo’s little joke.
Not fat away Red Zeo and Zeo Shadow were fighting Trilons together, almost like a well oiled machine. Red Zeo cut them down with his Zeo Sword while Zeo Shadow pulled out her own Zeo Shadow staff to do some cutting of her own. Finally only a few Trilons remained, and Zeo Shadow took them out with ease.
“ZEO SHADOW RIBBONS STRIKE!!!” Zeo Shadow called out as her ribbons erupted from her fingers engulfing the last of their Trilons. After a few seconds the Trilons were deactivated.
Zeo Knight and Red Astro fought against their Trilons with seasoned practice. Zeo Knight looked at Red Astro and got the impression he knew what he was doing against their opposition. Red Astro quickly explained “I came across some files from the council that dealt with the Cylons. After viewing the contents of those files I made sure I never forgot what was on them.”
Zeo Knight detected the tone in Red Astro’s voice. “Those must have been some heavy duty files.” Zeo Knight had said.
“They were.” Red Astro answered as he then brought up his Spiral Saber. Zeo Knight also brought out his own Zeo Blade and cut down their adversaries before bringing their energy weapons to firing. Zeo Knight’s sword and Red Astro’s Spiral Saber all took down the Trilons in their way. Zeo Knight then looked at Red Astro and said “I think my team and I need to take a look at those files.”
“I’ll make them available to you and the other Rangers when I can.’ Red Astro promised. Zeo Knight nodded knowing that Red Astro would keep to his word.
Zeo Phoenix and Blue Zeo fought together and Blue Zeo couldn’t help but say “You know if people see us like this. They’re going to talk.”
“About what current events?” Zeo Phoenix said with equal wit. “But I’ll tell you this I don’t like how SHE’s giving us those dirty looks.” Phoenix was looking up at Circuit Breaker whose lip was curling in frustration. She obviously didn’t like what she was seeing, but it wasn’t Blue Zeo and Zeo Phoenix, rather it was the defeat of her forces which Zeo Phoenix and Blue Zeo were about to contribute to.
Blue Zeo used his Martial Arts expertise while Zeo Phoenix made use of her kickboxing training mingled in with her dance training allowing her to move with deadly, yet graceful, precision. Despite the fighting prowess the Trilons had(and they did have good ability) they, like the others, fell leaving Blue Zeo and Zeo Phoenix as the only ones standing. Especially after Zeo Phoenix finished them off with her Phoenix Energy Wave technique which cut down the last Trilons with a wave of energy that resembled a bird’s wing. “Wow!” Blue Zeo said.
“Thanks I aim to please.” Zeo Phoenix answered as she looked at Blue Zeo. She was always concerned for Rocky DeSantos, but now she was even more so with Jessica’s murder still fresh in his mind, and now finding out that her sister was trying to kill them with homicidal machine warriors.
If he had any grief going through his mind however Blue Zeo didn’t show it as he turned to look at Zeo Phoenix and said “I’d kiss you but you’d probably slap me silly.”
“Not to mention our helmets are in the way.” Zeo Phoenix added. She paused for a moment wondering about asking Blue Zeo out for a night on the town but Zeo Phoenix thought better of it, as Blue Zeo picked up on the thought.
“Not now. It’s still too soon.”
“I understand.” Zeo Phoenix answered. “But I’ll ask again later.”
“Hopefully I’ll be ready to move on then.” Blue Zeo said as he looked at Green Zeo and Gold Astro fighting together. All the while Green Zeo stared at Gold Astro wondering if she had seen her before.
~~ That fighting style. I know it from somewhere. ~ Green Zeo thought as Gold Astro cut into the Trilons with her solar sais. Turning around she then launched one of her weapons at the Trilon sneaking behind Green Zeo and it hit right at the light intersection on its face.
“Nice shot.” Green Zeo said.
“Thanks.” Gold Astro answered as another Trilon snuck in from behind her. Green Zeo then did his part calling forth “ZEO POWER HATCHETS!!!” and cutting the Trilon down. “And thank you for the save.” Gold Astro said in thanks.
“No problem.” Green Zeo answered, but when he heard Gold Astro’s voice again he had that same feeling again like he had before. A feeling of familiarity.
~Where do I know you from?~ Green Zeo asked himself as he continued to look at Gold Astro.
Lastly was Yellow Astro, Silver Zeo and Alison Bogard taking on their Trilons. “All right. How do you want to do this?” Yellow Zeo asked.
“How about you two soften them up and I finish the last ones off?” Alison recommended. Silver Zeo shrugged and said “Sounds good to me.”
“I’ll go first. STAR SLINGER!!!” Yellow Astro said as she fired several shots at the Trilons knocking them down. Silver Zeo then made her move.
“STAR SHOOTER!!!” she shouted as Silver Zeo’s wrist weapon fired throwing stars at the Trilons knocking out their sensors. Then Alison gave the final strike as she flew through the air with her fist giving off ‘ki’ energy.
“SPIRIT BULLET!!!” she shouted as her fist went through one Trilon and kept going until it went through three more. Soon their Trilons were knocked down to the ground.
“Well looks like that’s done.” Yellow Zeo said unaware that a Trilon was sneaking past them. Or so the Trilon thought as Yellow Zeo and Alison both gave a side kick AT THE SAME TIME to the last Trilon knocking him down and out.
“Wow talk about being in sync.” Silver Zeo said to the double side kick both Yellow Astro and Alison pulled off. The only one who wasn’t impressed however was Circuit Breaker. She thought about laying down another electrical storm, but her power reserves were too low to give such an attack. She still had her Psycho Silver morpher, but she wasn’t ready to use that yet.
“FALL BACK INTO THE BASE!!!” Circuit Breaker ordered as she ran back down the corridor. The surviving Trilons and Centurions followed their leader as the blast door started to close. “Don’t let her get away!” Zeo Punk said as she led the charge through the door. Red Astro, Red Zeo and Zeo Knight shrugged as they followed Zeo Punk, along with their respective teams through the doorway before it could close completely.
The Astros, Zeos, Outsiders and Alison wasted no time entering the corridor before it closed. A corridor that led them further into the Cylon base. As they moved on deeper into the base they had to fight more Centurions and Trilons along the way. They had lost track of how many had been destroyed, but they knew that there had to be more coming.
“At this rate we’ll be too exhausted to find Zhane due to all the Cylons we’ve been destroying.” Blue Astro had said.
“Maybe T. J. but we’ve got to keep going.” Red Astro answered back.
And sure enough they did, up to the chamber where Zhane and Cassidy were as their powers were being drained. He was not there now. But another group of Cylons, and Circuit Breaker were. As well with Vulpa and Specter by her sides. “Well it seems as though you are correct.” Specter had said to Circuit Breaker. “These Rangers are persistent.”
“Yes.” Circuit Breaker said. “Too bad their persistence only got them killed.”
“Where’s Zhane?” Red Astro immediately asked. But Circuit Breaker had no intention of giving Red Astro his answer. Rather she just smirked and looked at Silver Zeo. “Come and get him.” She said as she walked down a nearby corridor with the blast doors closing behind her. Silver Zeo saw Josie dissapear and was not about to let her get away that easily.
“No you don’t!” Silver Zeo said as she jumped under the closing door, just barely getting through. The other Rangers however couldn’t reach her since the door was almost closed and it would have been suicide for anyone to get through the rapidly shrinking crack.
The blast door shut cutting Silver Zeo off from the rest of the team.
Silver Zeo looked around finding herself in a chamber of some sort. What its function was however remained a mystery, but she supposed it didn’t matter right now. Especially when she heard the voice of her adversary calling.
“Hello Cassidy. “” The voice said from the top of a series of stairs. Silver Zeo looked up to see Circuit Breaker standing on a ledge then floating down so that both females were staring directly at each other.
“Welcome to my proving grounds. You’re just in time to help test out my latest project.” Silver Zeo however didn’t care where she was, she was there for other reasons. “Where’s Zhane?” she asked.
“He’s not dead.” Circuit Breaker answered. “But he is close to it. Just as you will be when I’m through with you.” Circuit Breaker then brought forth a device that she held out in front of her and called out “SILVER PSYCHO POWER!!!” Next thing that happened silver energy swirled around Circuit Breaker encasing her in armor that was black with silver trim. On her belt was an ‘N’ that reminded Cassidy of the Psycho Rangers and Silver Zeo knew she was looking at the Psycho Silver uniform.
Silver Zeo felt sickened to say the least. “Was this what you wanted our powers for? To make yourself a Psycho Ranger?” she asked in disgust.
“I merely wanted what was mine! What I needed to be whole again!” Psycho Silver shouted making reference to more than the paralysis she felt when unmorphed. “I was the one destined to be the Silver Ranger. Not Jessie. And certainly not you!”
“The powers seem to disagree with you.” Silver Zeo and Psycho Silver stared each other down wondering who would make the first move. Psycho Silver however wasn’t finished with her taunting.
“I don’t see why it would choose you. You’re nothing more than a little girl in a grown up world. You’re no fighter. You don’t have any special talents. You’re just a pretty face and nothing else.”
“Well it’s nice to know that you don’t think I’m shallow.” Silver Zeo retorted. “I’d be real disappointed if you did.” Silver Zeo was scared but she was not about to let her adversary see that. She tried to think what her father would do, and realized that he would not back down from a confrontation. Cassidy Bridges wouldn’t either.
“Well after this it won’t matter. You won’t live long enough for anyone to think of you again.” Psycho Silver then threw a roundhouse kick which Silver Zeo blocked, only for Psycho Silver to land an elbow on the back of Silver Zeo’s neck.
Silver Zeo then tried a spin to knock Psycho Silver off the ground but Psycho Silver jumped up to avoid the swinging leg. She then stomped on the ground causing Silver Zeo to roll away from Psycho Silver’s stomping foot, but she then ran out of wall and Psycho Silver then landed a kick in the stomach giving Silver Zeo more pain to think about.
“Still the same. Using Jessie’s moves.” Psycho Silver taunted. Silver Zeo tried to use her Silver Zeo starshooter, and got off several shotsï¿½all of them deflected by Psycho Silver’s Psycho blade. Each star sliced in half as they approached her. Silver Zeo had to dodge the sword strike when Psycho Silver approached her but right now Silver Zeo was running on a combination of fear and adreneline.
Silver Zeo tried a few more attacks, but each time the attacks were blocked. And each time Silver Zeo was on the receiving end of more punishment. “You know. I thought you would have demorphed by now. Your powers really can’t keep this up forever.”
Despite the taunts Silver Zeo knew Psycho Silver was right. Her hold on the morph was by a thread to say the least. Sooner or later Silver Zeo would demorph and Cassidy Bridges would be at Psycho Silver’s mercy.
“You are nothing.” Psycho Silver said again. “There is nothing about you. You use Jessie’s moves to do your fighting for you, and who knows who else’s as well. You’re just a pretty little girl who should be playing with dolls. You can’t even getï¿½this.” A chamber then opened from above and Silver Zeo noticed a figure being lowered down. He hung on a cross like a scarecrow, clearly weak and beaten, yet securely bound as he was presented like a trophy that Psycho Silver could show off any time she wanted.
He looked like he had been put through the ringer, even though no bruises were shown. He looked so weak that he could barely stand. Silver Zeo knew who this person was, and knew she had to save him again.
“Zhane.” Silver Zeo said.
“That’s right. And you will never save him. Because you can’t. There is nothing about you that can possibly threaten me.” Psycho Silver then shot out electricity which Silver Zeo dodged. She looked up at Zhane again and knew she had to rethink her strategy. “Even if I didn’t have my mobility unit and powers working in tandem there really isn’t anything you could have done.” Psycho Silver said the last line as if it was a taunt.
~She’s right. There’s not much to me when I look at it. ~ Silver Zeo thought. ~ All I have is what the powers gave me. Except for some cheerleading, daddy’s sharpshooting lessons, Alison’s kickboxingï¿½~ Suddenly Silver Zeo knew what she had to do. She had to change her strategy.
Getting a running start Silver Zeo then jumped high in the air and started throwing kicks much like Alison had taught her. Psycho Silver was surprised and soon found herself on the defensive. “How? These aren’t Jessie’s moves?”
“I guess there’s more to me than even I thought.” Silver Zeo said. “Things my friends and family gave to me. Like lessons on how to fight.” Silver Zeo then threw a simple front kick which sent Psycho Silver back against the wall. Since it was not her sister’s move Psycho Silver had no way to protect herself against it.
“Nice try. But not good enough!” Psycho Silver shouted as energy tendrils shot out of Psycho her fingers which Silver Zeo promptly dodged with a cartwheel. ~ I guess cheerleading training in junior high really did pay off. ~ she thought with amusement. She then cast a look in Zhane’s direction and saw Psycho Silver advance towards him as if ready to threaten.
Silver Zeo wouldn’t have it and went into a running charge throwing Psycho Silver back on a control panel that sparked immediately. From the sparks however came power, which suddenly went into Psycho Silver. Silver Zeo tried to take advantage of the distraction and looked for a way to get Zhane down but Psycho Silver quickly got back up.
Psycho Silver had broken away from the damaged panel seemingly rejuvenated more than ever. She then walked menacingly towards Silver Zeo and delivered a backhand across her helmet sending her flying into another console, but unlike Psycho Silver Silver Zeo did not have the ability to absorb the console’s energy.
“I wish I could say that vitamins do wonders for the body. But I really have to complement the powers working in tandem with my mobility unit increasing my already impressive powers. Someday though I won’t need it anymore. MY powers will heal me.”
“One problem, those aren’t YOUR powers.” Silver Zeo said.
“It doesn’t matter. I am more stronger than any Ranger. And I will demonstrate by destroying you!”Psycho Silver then reached back with a silver energy sphere ready to hit Silver Zeo with it.
Silver Zeo hid behind a corner as the sphere missed its target. And as Psycho Silver made ready for another shot Silver Zeo found herself wishing that her father was around to help her. Nash always provided a sense of security to her daughter even though she wasn’t there all the time.
~I wish daddy was here right now. ~ Silver Zeo thought. Her father taught her everything that she had known about being the woman she was, but then Silver Zeo remembered something Nash told her and it applied to the situation at hand.
~A low blow for a woman is always in the chest. It is the female equivalent for hitting a man in theï¿½~ Cassidy quickly got the idea and didn’t need to know anymore, nor did she want to know how her father knew what he knew. But since she was Silver Zeo right now the knowledge was very useful to her right now. Getting into a running charge Silver Zeo clotheslined Psycho Silver in her upper chest area sending her down hard. ~ Thanks daddy. ~ Silver Zeo thought as she then brought out her nightstick and extended it.
“All right the time for dealing with ‘Jessie Belle is over. Now you’re facing Cassidy Bridges. COME ON!!!” Silver Zeo shouted with the nightstick in hand wondering what Psycho Silver had to offer. She wouldn’t have long to wait as Psycho Silver charged at her adversary. Her hand then protruded a sheath of energy which formed a scimitar like blade. She then slashed madly at Silver Zeo who promptly dodged the swipes, and got in a few of her own with the nightstick. A few in the chest, and one to the back of the head sending Psycho Silver down to the floor again.
“Josie. I’m getting tired of this. Give up now and let everyone go. There’s no point in continuing this fight.” Psycho Silver was too clouded with rage to listen to Silver Zeo speak. Ironically, it also clouded her combat skills which was why she was coming off clumsy.
“NEVER!” Psycho Silver shouted. “I will never stop!NOT UNTIL ALL YOU RANGERS ARE DEAD!!!!” She then brought up her right gauntlet and pulses of energy erupted from her wrist sending Silver Zeo flying around the room. Explosions and debris flying everywhere, and Psycho Silver lost in her rage. Soon one of her shots hit dead on and Silver Zeo was sent flying back into the wall, as she tried to recover Psycho Silver moved menacingly towards her once again.
“And now Cassidy Bridges, your end has come.” Psycho Silver brought her glove to the fore again ready to fire again only for her Psycho Ranger suit to flicker on and off as her Psycho Ranger powers seemed to lose their cohesion. Soon her Psycho Ranger suit was gone and Circuit Breaker stood in Psycho Silver’s place once again.
“What? What happened?” Circuit Breaker said looking at her Circuit Breaker suit allowing Silver Zeo to recover quickly. Quickly taking off her Zeo Chain she wrapped it around Circuit Breaker binding her hands to her sides, then with a running start delivered a Zeo Power punch across Circuit Breaker’s jaw. Circuit Breaker/Psycho Silver was out cold, and Silver Zeo was very grateful for that.
She didn’t know how it happened, but was glad it did as she made her way to where Zhane was still hanging. After she quickly cut him down he seemed to be starting to stir briefly but it would be a long time before he would be ready to fight again. “What took you so long?” Zhane said with a small smile on his face as he fell to the floor. Circuit Breaker clearly left him with not even enough energy to even walk with.
“Come on Zhane. Time to get you out of here.” Silver Zeo said as she half carried, half dragged her Astro counterpart away from her defeated foe. As she carried him Silver Zeo started to give off her glow again and Zhane seemed to take it in as he flickered in and out, then glowed humself.
“That should be enough.” Zhane said. “You’re already running on fumes I don’t want to drain you dry.”
“You okay?” Silver Zeo asked as she brought her own glow under control.
“I’m not at 100%ï¿½I’m not even at 50%ï¿½but I’m better than I was.” Silver Zeo nodded as she carried Zhane to the door that led out of Circuit Breaker’s training grounds.
The door opened and Silver Zeo made in back out into the Cylon corridors, where the other Rangers and Outsiders continued to fight.
“We can’t hold this up forever!” Zeo Knight said as more Cylon reinforcements appeared.
“I don’t think we have to.” Alison answered back as Silver Zeo appeared with Zhane in hand. “Let’s get out of here.” Silver Zeo said as she passed Zhane on to his Astro Ranger friends.
“Not so fast.” Specter said as he then ordered the Centurions to fire on the Astros knocking them down. Zhane fell down to the floor hard and Specter was on him. A blaster in hand Specter said “I doubt that in your weakened state thhat you’ll put up much of a fight.”
“Let him go!” Red Astro shouted as he was the first to get up. The other Astros right behind him.
It was Silver Zeo though who was the first to draw out her Zeo Blaster and kept it leveled at Specter. “It would be advisable to surrender now otherwise your friend will die here and now.” The Cogitator said holding Zhane close. “If you wish you and your friend to live you will surrender here and now.”
“Why should we trust you?” Yellow Zeo replied. “You’re out to kill us all. You and your mistress.”
“True.” Specter answered back. “But this one may yet still live if you all surrender now.” Silver Zeo noticed Alison moving behind him nodding that she was ready to help. Silver Zeo understood and still kept her gun leveled at Specter.
“I can take him” Silver Zeo said to Red. Her voice confident that she could make the shot.
“Take him.” Red Zeo ordered and Silver Zeo fired. Specter was driven back by the shot, and he released his hold on Zhane allowing Alison to grab him and hand him off to the Astros.
“Girl you must be very good, very lucky or very stupid to do something like that.” Zeo Punk said.
“Maybe a little of all three.” Silver Zeo answered as the Rangers, Alison and the Outsiders all backtracked their way to the portal chamber as Red Astro then called into his communicator and told DECA to transport them all back to the Gaudeamas corp building. DECA immediately worked her way into the portal system’s computer and they were all teleported out just as Specter entered the portal chamber with Centurions and Trilons in tow, but they were too late as the Rangers were already gone.
“This is not good.” Specter stated. “I’m sure Miss Belle will not be pleased with these events.” And sure enough as soon as she regained consciousness, she wasn’t.
Inside the Gaudeamus building, Panni had already cleared the bottom floor of all employees when the Rangers started coming in. She then came over to them and saw how some of them were injured. “Shit. Not good.” She then raised her right wrist to her mouth. “Ramon, Lyla, get the medical facilities in the underground level up and running now. Sylphina, we need you there too for your gifts!”
“Already on it!” Lyla said over the comm. “Facilities are ready at your disposal.”
“Remind me to thank Laocorn for his gift of hindsight.” Panni said as she went to a elevator motioning the Rangers and Outsiders to follow. When they were all inside Panni then hit a hidden button on the elevator and then swiped a card through a slot as the elevator went down even further.
“What is this?” Red Zeo asked.
“A place that has been used only for training when wanted but it also houses sophisticated equipment. More advanced than anything on earth.” Panni said.
When the doors opened the Rangers clearly knew Panni wasn’t lying. All the technology there seemed to be nothing like any hospital on Earth could provide. Healing chambers were along each wall, as well as devices that Red Astro recognized from hundreds of worlds. “Those are Eltarian regenerative chambers.” Red Zeo said. “Where did you get those?”
“It’s a long story.” Panni said.
“I’m sure it is.” Alison said through clenched teeth. “He’s going to have to tell it soon.” Panni shot a glare at Alison, but deep down Panni knew Alison was right. If Laocorn didn’t tell the Outsiders about his past, someone else would.
Yellow Zeo also took in the equipment and recognized some of it from her travels with the Doctor. “There’s nothing like this on Earth. I recognize a Zero environment generator hooked up to one of those thing. “Zeo Punk then asked what her cousin was talking about, and Yellow Zeo explained.
“The Doctor told me about those. He said that some Time Lords use them to help during difficult regenerations when they don’t have the benefit of a Zero Room.” The Rangers then managed to get Zhane to a bed and he began to rest as Sylphina began her treatments to heal his body from Circuit Breaker’s torture.
“I had even used one when I had a back injury.” Blue Zeo added as Sylphina continued her work.
“This will take some time. Perhaps you should adjourn for a while.”
“We’re staying.” Red Zeo said.
“Very well. Silver Zeo, Laocorn wishes to speak with you. Could you go up to his office please?” Silver Zeo had a hard time leaving Zhane’s side but Zhane gave her a pat and said “Go on up. I’ll be fine.” Silver Zeo nodded and went up to Laocorn’s office. Alison also decided to follow. “Where are you going?” Yellow Astro asked.
“With Silver Zeo. Where she goes I go.” Alison said straight up. Both went into the elevator and the door closed. Soon all the Rangers decided to demorph as did the Outsiders as they all watched over Zhane as Sylphina and the technology did its work.
Sylphina finished her own healing treatment over Zhane’s prone body. Andros asked her for what happened next. She then said, “He should recover thanks to some energy he received. All of the major injuries he sustained have been healed. I would suggest he tries to take it easy for a while though. Like perhaps a week.”
“We also need to check his powers to make sure they weren’t taxed too much. With his time in cryo and now thisï¿½well the powers weren’t designed for this much use and abuse.” Red Astro said.
“We will when we get back to the Megaship.” Gold Astro said. Then everyone demorphed back into their civilian identities. All except Gold Astro.
“Well now that that’s settled.” Adam said as he turned to Gold Astro who still hadn’t demorphed. “I’d hate to be rude, but I get the strangest feeling that I should know you.”
“I feel the same.” Tommy said as well. “I don’t want you to think that we are trying to get you to reveal your identity, but we can’t help but be a little curious.”
“Perhaps it’s time.” Andros said. “You can’t hide forever.” Gold Astro looked at her partner and nodded as she then took off her helmet and the jaws of Red and Green Zeo just dropped.
“Hello Thomas. Adam. It’s been a while.” Sabrina said.
All the Zeos were speechless, as were the Outsiders. “Scorï¿½Scorï¿½Scorpina?” Rocky managed to studder out.
“Not anymore.” Andros said. “She’s been freed from the evil spell Rita placed on her thousands of years ago. She’s Sabrina now.”
“Sabrina?” Adam asked. “Why do you call yourself that? I remember you used that name to lure Aisha and me into a trap.”
“It was the only one that seemed to fit me. I couldn’t go back to my real name.” Sabrina answered.
“Real name?” Lillian asked.
Sabrina then took a breath and decided to tell her story. “Thousands of years ago there was this Ninjetti warrior named Selinaï¿½”
“Great it’s going to be one of those long stories.” Jinx said rolling her eyes. Samantha threw a smirk in her cousin’s direction.
At the penthouse level of Gaudeamas Corp Silver Zeo and Alison exited the elevator and found themselves in Laocorn’s office. Laocorn and Panni were quick to greet their guests. “Hello Cassidy. Glad you could make it.”
“POWER DOWN!!!” Silver Zeo said as she morphed back to being Cassidy Bridges. When she did her legs finally gave out on her and Cassidy had to sit down. Alison had to help her to a chair for which Cassidy was grateful.
“You need to rest.” Panni said. “You took quite a beating. Not to mention losing a lot of energy.”
“Tell me about it.” Cassidy stated. “First I’m kidnapped, then I have half my powers drained, I have to fight again, and I meet the sister of my predecessor who’s trying to kill me.”
“How did you feel when you did all that?” Alison asked. Cassidy looked at her friend and knew what her answer would be, the truth.
“I was so scared.” Cassidy answered. “All through what was going on I wished my father was there. Daddy was always good at figuring things out, and saving the day for me. And for the first time when I was in trouble, he wasn’t there for meï¿½at least not in the way he usually was.”
“I think Nash was.” Laocorn said. “In spirit at any rate. I see a lot of your father in you. His stubborn streak, his ‘never say die’ attitiude, his determination. You truly are your father’s daughter.”
“Well I may need more karate lessons after today. I don’t think I can count on the crystal to help me with fighting forever.” Alison nodded agreeing with Cassidy’s point and figured that maybe her Zeo teammates could help her out. “If not them, perhaps Terry or I.”
“Maybe. Oh by the way, thanks for the kickboxing lessons. They really helped me out.”
“No problem. Perhaps we could have another lesson soon.” Alison said.
“We’ll see. For now I think Cassidy needs to freshen up a bit. Panni show her to the living quarters would you? Allow Cassidy the chance to freshen up?” Panni nodded at Laocorn’s request and guided her to the living section of Laocorn’s penthouse. “Go on I’ll catch up.” Alison said. She had some business with Laocorn.
Cassidy nodded and turned to Panni. “Do you have a box of Cocoa Puffs or something?” she asked as she dissapeared around the corner. Alison and Laocorn were left alone, and Alison immediately confronted Laocorn. “Do the Rangers know about you?” she asked. “And what happened?”
“No.” Laocorn said knowing what Alison was talking about. The Armor of Mars incident. “I do plan to tell them today though, and Cassidy as well.”
Alison nodded and looked dead at Laocorn. “You tell them your secret. Or I will.”
Laocorn nodded as he activated his intercom and said to Lyla “Are our guests ready to come up?”
“Yes sir.” Lyla answered.
“Bring them.” Laocorn then turned off the intercom and looked at Alison dead in the eye. “I think Cassidy could use a friend right about now.” Alison nodded and went into Laocorn’s Private Lounge where Cassidy sat waiting.
Outside Lisa and Nash were getting very impatient. They saw nothing happening in the Gaudeamas building, but they could feel something happening in there. It was getting to the point where Lisa was starting to get a little stir crazy.
“That’s it I’m going in there!” Lisa said getting out of the ‘Cuda to go into Gaudeamas corp. Nash tried to restrain her but Lisa was not listening. She was already making her way through the front door heading to the elevators and the penthouse where Laocorn would be.
“Oh great!” Nash said as he got out of the ‘Cuda and followed his ex-wife.
Inside Laocorn’s private lounge Cassidy swapped stories as Cassidy sat in a lounge chair holding a box of Fruit Loops close to her. She munched the Loops bit by bit holding a wide eyed gaze forward. Alison was nearby watching Cassidy eat. “Nervous, trying to build up more energy, or have the events of today caught up with you?” Alison asked.
Cassidy turned to look at Alison while she was still eating. “Nervous? What makes you say that?”
“Well you just busted out of a psycho bitch’s lair, had your powers drained by said psyco bitch, fought that same Psycho bitch to get a fellow Silver Ranger out, and now you are about to formally unmask yourself in front of your teammates. What’s there to be nervous about?” Alison asked whimsically.
Cassidy then turned to her friend and gave her a lopsided smile. “Well you’ve got plenty to be worried about. You just find out you’ve got a sister you never knew you had, you find out that very same sister is a Power Ranger, and that your cousin has found your birth parents.” Alison gave her own lopsided smile and sat beside Cassidy.
“You wouldn’t happen to have another one of those boxes would you?” Alison asked. Cassidy held the box close to her as if protecting it from Alison, then shook her head as if saying ‘No you’re not getting these.’
“Okay. If you want me to tell the others that Silver Zeo can’t come out because she’s porking up on Gaudeamus’s Fruit Loops I can do that.” Alison turned to walk out the door when Cassidy set the box down and stood in the doorway. “You wouldn’t do that would you?”
“Not unless you want to do it.” Alison said moving her hand towards the door. On the other side stood the Zeo Rangers, Astro Rangers and Outsiders waiting for her to come out. Sighing Cassidy said “Okay, might as well. Just let me get descent.”
“You got it.” Alison said. Cassidy then gave her morphing call “IT’S MORPHIN TIME!!!” and the Zeonizers appeared.
“ZEO RANGER VII-SILVER!!!”
Silver Zeo stood ready to go out to face her other teammates. Alison gave her friend a pat on the shoulder hoping it would boost her spirits up. “You ready?” Alison asked.
“Let’s do it.” Silver Zeo said as she and Alison opened the doors looking to greet the other Zeo Rangers waiting for her.
Down in medical Zhane rested comfortably in a bed with the Astro, Zeo Rangers and Outsiders all looking over him. “Wow. So nice to be appreciated.” Zhane said weakily. The other Astros couldn’t help but smile at Zhane’s remark.
“How do you feel?” Andros asked. Zhane could only smile as he gave his weak answer. “Awful. But it beats being dead.” Sabrina and Andros smiled at Zhane’s answer. And Tommy and Adam were unsure how to deal with Sabrina’s smile. For they always knew her as Scorpina one of their most dangerous enemies.
“Still a shock huh? I mean ‘Scorpina’ as a Ranger?” Sabrina said to Tommy and Adam. Adam decided to be the truthful one and say “Yeah.”
“I couldn’t believe it myself.” Sabrina said. “And I’ll tell you when I came across this morpher being a Ranger was the furthest thing on my mind.”
“And I can vouch for that.” Andros added. “And she has also stood by us with distinction, and helped us many times. Ask Zordon one time.” Tommy was about to ask how the astros knew of Zordon, but then Panni came down the elevator.
“Laocorn wishes to see all of you.” She said. Tommy, Tyler and Andros all nodded their heads as if saying that they would follow. After Zhane was placed in a wheelchair all the teams followed Panni to the elevator, which rose up all the way to the top floor where Laocorn’s penthouse was. When the door chimed they opened to reveal a room that was spacious and luxuriously decorated.
“I know some UAE guys who would love to have the decorator of this joint work for them.” Sabrina said.
“I know.” Tommy said as well. “This place puts Rita’s palace to shame.”
“Thank you for the compliment Mr. Oliver.” A voice said from the side. Tommy and everyone turned in the direction of the voice and saw Laocorn seated behind a desk. “For those of you who don’t know me allow me to introduce myself. I am Laocorn Gaudeamas, head of Gaudeamas corporation.”
“You’re the Outsiders’ employer?” Cassie asked.
“Yes Miss Chan. And they have been very helpful.” Laocorn made notice of Tyler, Lillian, Christina, Katarina, Jamie, Terry and Nate who bowed tp them. “As has our other ‘guest’.” Panni then turned on the T. V. on the wall and Zordon’s face appeared.
“Zordon?” Tommy asked confused.
“Yes Tommy. I know of Laocorn. In fact he contacted me when he said the Silver Zeo Ranger would be unmasked.” Zordon said.
“Are the others there too?” Kat asked.
“Right here Kat.” Kimberly said over the vid link. Also there were Jason, Billy, Trini, Zack, Samoht, Tanya, David, Nathan, Skull, Emily, Richie and Bulk. “We’re looking forward to seeing who we’ll be fighting with.”
“I think we all are.” Rocky said when the sound of an elevator opened and Lisa Bridges came out charging like a woman on the warpath.
“All right Gaudeamas. I want answers and I want the truth this time!” Lisa Bridges said charging in to Laocorn’s office. Nash close behind but trying to keep his ex-wife under control-and not succeeding.
“Lisa. Lisa please.” Nash said but Lisa was not hearing. She looked at Laocorn and stared at him.
“You said you knew where Cassidy was. You said that she’d be okay and that I’d see her soon. So where is she? And don’t say ‘I’m sure she’ll be okay.’ You know something and I want to hear it.” Nash rolled his eyes at Lisa’s antics, but he did have to acknowledge that Lisa had a point. If Laocorn knew anything about Cassidy’s whereabouts they had to know.
Laocorn sighed but nodded. “Very well. I was under confidence not to reveal anything, but I will tell you where Cassidy is. After I entertain my guests here.”
Lisa couldn’t believe what she was hearing. “Your guests? What makes them more special than my daughter?”
“Because they are waiting for your daughter as well.” Panni said. “And so is he.” Panni pointed to a video screen and Zordon’s face appeared on the viewer. Nash and Lisa were stunned to see the sight of a giant floating head on a T. V. screen.
“Zordon.” Laocorn said. “It seems that these two are looking for their daughter. May they be allowed to wait for her?” Zordon contemplated the request and thought Nash and Lisa were trustworthy individuals. They would not betray Cassidy’s secret, and any they do tell would have Nash’s utmost trust.
“Yes Laocorn.” Zordon said. “They can stay.”
“Nash.” Lisa started to studder. “There is a floating head on that T. V.”
“I know sweetheart. I know.” Nash said trying to comfort her, but he didn’t say anything not wanting to bog down the conversation with other questions. Right now only one mattered. And that was where his daughter was. Laocorn then spoke to Zordon and the Rangers in his office and on the screen.
“As you know, the previous Silver Zeo Ranger was killed during the Interdimensional War. During the Cylon attack a sucessor had taken her place. A sucessor who had become aware to me when she came to my offices. “” Everyone remained silent as Laocorn spoke. Nash however had a funny feeling that he would not like where this conversation would be going however.
“And while some of you have known her, or have known of her. Her identity has not been formally revealed until now. So now I present to you the Silver Zeo Ranger.” As Laocorn finished his speech a set of double doors opened up and Silver Zeo stood in the doorway. Alison was by her side and walked down the steps to where the Astros were standing. Silver Zeo then walked down the steps to where the Rangers stood as well as her parents. Lisa looked at Silver Zeo and when she saw Alison with her Lisa suddenly had a bad feeling.
Looking around Silver Zeo saw the faces of the Rangers as well as that of Zordon on the screen. “Welcome Silver Zeo Ranger. I am Zordon of Eltar. I am the mentor to the Zeo Rangers as well as to the Morphin Rangers who are a support unit.”
“I’m Skull.” Skull said on the screen. These are Richie, Emily and Bulk. Members of Zeo Team II which you are a part of.” Each member waved on the screen, and the Morphin rangers introduced themselves as well. Then Zordon took the floor again.
“And now Silver Zeo. The time has come for you to reveal your identity.” As she nodded to Zordon, Silver Zeo turned to face the Rangers, Outsiders and her parents. After a nod from Alison and Zhane, Silver Zeo was ready. Nash and Lisa however could swear that Silver Zeo was looking right at them.
Silver Zeo undid the latches and took off her helmet. Her brown hair falling to her side as the helmet came off, end everyone looked to see the face of the newest Zeo Ranger. When the helmet was by her side Nash looked completely stunned and couldn’t believe what he saw. Lisa however fainted when she saw the face the face of Silver Zeo, especially after she said “Hi mom. Hi dad.”
Silver Zeo revealed herself to be Cassidy Bridges. The Rangers may have known her name, and had seen her face before, but it was only now that the reality of Cassidy being the new Silver Zeo had sunk in. Nash would have been stunned in disbelief if it wasn’t for having to catch his ex-wife when she fainted.
The Zeo Rangers however went to shake Cassidy’s hand. The Outsiders quickly followed as did the Astro Rangers and Alison. “Nice to finally meet you.” Kat said.
“Didn’t we already?” Cassidy asked.
“Well not as we’ve met you now.” Samantha said. “At the mall we thought you were just someone shopping with their mum.”
“Ex-stepmom, but that’s a long story. Speaking of parents.” Cassidy then went to her father and mother’s side. Nash immediately took Lisa in his arms and carried her towards the door. “I’m going to take your mother home sweetheart.” Nash said turning to Cassidy. “But we have some things to discuss once we get home.”
“I know daddy.” Cassidy answered. “Please don’t blame Laocorn. None of this is his fault. Nor is it the fault of the other Rangers.” Cassidy turned to the Zeos, Astros and Outsiders and smiled as if showing her support to them. Nash looked at the Rangers and his daughter, and he realized that she was one of them now.
“I’ll try not to Cassidy.” Nash said. “But we are going to talk about this.” Cassidy nodded and she watched as Nash carried Lisa out of Laocorn’s office. The other rangers watched him leave as well.
“Nice guy.” Tommy said. “Kind of reminds me about Detective Park back home.”
“Yeah.” Adam said. “Which reminds me, I never did get around to confronting my father about being a Ranger.”
This got a look from Cassidy. “Your father’s a cop?”
Adam smiled lopsidedly. “Yeah, and I see so is yours. You mind if I drop in on your father’s talk so that I can pick up some pointers on what to say to him?”
“Why not?” Cassidy said. “The rest of you guys can come too if you want. I have a feeling that I may need all the support I need if I’m going to face my father.”
“No problem.” Kat said. “I think we’ll all be there.” The rest of the Zeos stood together showing Cassidy their support, and Cassidy was grateful for all of it. After shaking hands and giving some friendly pats all six Zeos joined the Outsiders and Astros on the main floor where Alison was talking to Ashley as they were getting to know each other better.
“So what’s the story between you and Gaudeamas.” Ashley asked. “You looked like you were ready to kill him.”
“It’s a long story, and one that’s not mine to tell.” Alison said. “Laocorn’s got to be the one to answer that.” Alison looked out at the view of San Francisco and then back at Laocorn who was part of the gathering that was happening where Cassidy was being welcomed. The viewing transmission was cut off with Tommy promising a formal meeting once Cassidy got back with them to the Power Chamber. Alison then looked at Laocorn and decided that if the truth was ever going to be told, then it would have to be now.
Alison and Ashley both walked up to Laocorn and Alison said. “The time for total truth is between us. You wanted to be the one to tell your secret. I suggest you get started.”
Everyone was confused by what Alison meant but Laocorn lowered his head a bit in sighing as he knew Alison was right. He then raised his head up looking at all the assembled guests before him. “When you look at the news, you usually see stories about Laocorn Gaudeamas, industrialist, billionaire, and all around humanitarian.” Everyone nodded confirming what Laocorn just said then he continued.
“But there were days when I was no better than the villains you Rangers have fought for the last four years.” Needless to say that got everyone’s attention.
“This has to deal with your sister and her death doesn’t it. Why when we see you in this office you keep staring long fully at her portrait.” Christina said.
Laocorn nodded. “It would be best to start at the beginning. If you start from the middle or the end then chaos ensues…” Laocorn closed his eyes and took a breath before he started to speak. “Three years ago back in the summer of 1993, I wasn’t the person you see before you. In fact I had only just completed high school. I was born and had lived my entire life on the Greek Island called Rhodes in the Mediterranean Sea. As far as my family went, my parents were both archeologists. My mother died when Sulia, my twin sister…” He stopped for a moment before going on. “When we were only 10. Our father then put all of his effort and time into his life work. Finding the Armor of Mars, which had belonged to my ancestor Gaudeamus.”
“Who was Gaudeamus?” Tyler asked.
“In the time of Alexander the Great, Gaudeamus was the King of Rhodes. History books say Alexander’s advance was stopped by the Persians but it was in fact my ancestor who defeated Alexander’s army with the Armor of Mars.” Laocorn said.
“What proof do you have of that?” Tommy asked still wary of Laocorn.
“The proof that my father found in the summer of 1993 was the ancient ruins of Rhodes’s civilization in the time of Alexander. In the cave where the ruins were, he and his colleague found one of the six pieces of the Armor of Mars. Specifically one of the two gauntlets.” Laocorn said.
“Something tells me that colleague had something to do with your past.” Chlesea said picking up and when mentioning the colleague Laocorn’s voice pitch had some hate in it.
“He was the catalyst for my decent.” Laocorn replied. “Greedy, unethical, and ruthless, the cold hearted bastard murdered my father in cold blood so that he could take all the credit for the discovery. For the one year he had done practically nothing where as my father spent his whole life trying to prove the legends about Gaudeamus and about my family’s past. I was so outraged at the bastard when he public presented my fathers findings as his own. I then did what was the worst thing of all…” Laocorn closed his eyes as if remembering the event as he was telling them himself. “I went after him.”
“DAMN YOU DONOVAN!” Laocorn broke down the door to the office that had belong to his father until the murdering college took it for himself. He was taking away everything Laocorn and Sulia had in life. He wouldn’t let it continue.
“Laocorn stop it!” Sulia clung to his side pleading him to reconsider.
“I know you killed father! You cowardly bastard!” Laocorn shouted at Donovan who was sitting in the chair with his back turned. The chair then spun around.
“And what if I did?” he smiled as pulled the trigger on the gun he had and fired at them. Laocorn without thinking shoved Sulia away and he felt himself get shot in the chest.
“LAOCORN!” Sulia cried as she saw the blood coming out from his wound. Donovan then got out of his chair and started walking towards them with his gun out and intent to kill them.
Laocorn pulled himself up against a wall. ~ I… need… great power… power… to obtain revenge on all who have harmed me and my family!~ Just then he felt a red glow beside him. He saw he was next to the box which contained the Armor of Mars piece. As if by impulse he put the gauntlet on his right arm.
“Time to die.” Donovan smiled as he fired the trigger.
What he didn’t expect was for Laocorn to catch the bullet with his right hand. Nor for the bullet in his chest to come out or for the wound to heal.
“What the…” Donovan stepped back.
“And now…” Laocorn hissed as he raised his gauntleted hand. Suddenly it then melted into a new shape. It looked incredibly new instead of ancient and took on a refined image. It then glowed scarlet. “YOU DIE!!!” From Laocorn’s gauntleted palm a circular device appeared and it blasted out a large and wide crimson blast of energy which engulfed everything in front of Laocorn.
Sulia could only watch on in horror at this.
When the blast stopped, all there was left was scorched earth, a blown apart desk, and a wall with large crater in it.
Laocorn just stared at what he just done. For a moment he thought of the destructiveness… but his mind soon changed thoughts to the power he wielded. More importantly to what he could gain. “… Godhood…”
Sulia blinked and widened her eyes in horror. “Laocorn…”
“Sulia. Don’t you see! Don’t you see what has happened!” Laocorn said excitedly. “The Legend of the Armor IS true! It does have power. Real power.” He then gripped his gauntlet hand into a fist and saw it glow crimson. A smile came across his face. “Power to exact revenge on all those have that have harmed our family over the centuries.”
“No! Laocorn you mustn’t try to find the rest of the Armor! Remember the legend! After Gaudeamus defeated Alexander, Alexander was awed by his power and invited him to Babylon. But when Alexander died, his generals out of fear killed Gaudeamus and then the Armor came to life. Then Mars God of War himself came to life. The paintings described him as being of fire and he laid waste to Alexander’s empire until four holy warriors brought him to his knees and sealed him away and broke the armor into six pieces scattering them to the winds.”
“I did NOT need a lesson in what I already know sister.” Laocorn said sharply.
“And what of the curse!” Sulia said.
“The one in the legend that says if one of our family were to wear all six pieces of the armor disaster would befall us.” Laocorn scoffed. “I don’t believe in curses. I only believe in what I CAN see. And what I see is that the Armor of Mars is the key to my revenge!”
“Brother think of what you saying!” Sulia pleaded.
“I have Sulia. Father was mocked and scorned by his peers for his beliefs. Our mother died because they would not treat her while our father was missing and thought to be dead. Do you remember how hard he cried as he got back home… just in time to see her die from brain cancer!” Laocorn stated venting his frustrations out of him. Emotions that he had never really thought he had consciously but were now coming to the surface.
“Laocorn you can’t take revenge on the whole world!” Sulia shouted. “It’s madness.”
“Madness… madness is living in world where dictators, tyrants, terrorists, murderers and thieves roam free and are called heroes. Madness is living in a world where the poor are sold into slavery, children are sold into prostitution, women are raped and abused, and the innocent are slaughtered for the sheer enjoyment of it all.” Laocorn told her. “So tell me my sister. Who is truly mad?”
“Laocorn… you’re scaring me…” Sulia cried. She just let loose her tears.
Laocorn stopped for a moment and then hugged his sister. “My sweet sister. Don’t worry. You will never have to cry again. I will never let anyone harm you. You are all I have in this world.”
“Then don’t lose yourself to madness Laocorn. Don’t!” Sulia sobbed in his chest.
“The future is what we make it my sister.” Laocorn told her. He then looked at the half ruined desk and saw the computer had some how survived the blast. He went to it and then saw what Donovan had been working on before. “Well now… this is very interesting.”
“What is?” Sulia asked.
“Our father had been selling other artifacts and saving the money while also playing several markets. He never lost any money, only gained.” Laocorn then smiled. “And apparently Donovan was trying to merger the companies he had taken from his father after he was ‘fatally killed in a car crash’.” Laocorn let out a laugh. “Yeah right. Like I believe that. He probably had his father killed.”
Sulia looked at the computer. “He was merging our family’s holdings with his own?!” she said in shock.
“Not was… did.” Laocorn replied. “However the fool forgot one thing.”
“One thing?” Sulia asked.
“Don’t you remember? Father did have the foresight to realize that even though Donovan was a man he needed for his work, he knew he was also a snake. So he made sure Donovan signed in his original contract that all finding and works of their partnership is split equally. In the event of one of their deaths, the sum gets split half in the survivors favor and the other goes to the victims living relatives…” Laocorn then smiled. “If both are dead, everything goes to oldest surviving relative on either side who is eighteen years of age or older.”
Sulia thought for a moment but then looked at Laocorn. “Yes my sister. We are the only ones left as far as family. In his zeal to make himself richer, Donovan has only succeeding in making us billionaires. It is divine providence.”
Laocorn stood up.” With the companies he already has and with this fortune I will create a financial empire like none other.” He then clenched his gauntleted fist. Though he didn’t say Sulia knew his thought.
~I shall find the other five pieces of the Armor of Mars and then I will become a God!~
Laocorn looked back at the stunned Rangers seeing their reaction. Cassidy’s look of shock and disbelief was expected since she had only been newly added to the ranks of the Rangers. But the other Rangers were completely stunned. In all their time fighting evil, never before had they come across anything like what the Armor of Mars represented. Only the Orb of Doom that Master Vile used came close when he tried to turn back time in order to conquer Earth easier.
Alison’s statement was neutral however. She had heard the story from her cousin, and right now there was nothing said that she hadn’t already heard.
“Sulia must have been something special.” Carlos said trying to break the silence.
“Yes Mrï¿½Garcia is it?” Laocorn asked. Carlos nodded.
“Sulia was special.” Laocorn said. “But I was too caught up in my own arrogance. What I considered the brazen zeal for justice could also have been considered a need for revenge and the selfish need to take out your pain onto others.” He then closed his eyes. “In a way it’s ironic. The murderer of my father was responsible for not only the corporation I use to cleanse my own soul of its sins but it was also responsible for turning me into a beast.”
Tommy felt like he should say something. He wanted to say that people choose their own fates and their own destinies, but he knew there were more than enough times where forces work against the individual stacking the deck to where there is no other choice but to follow the only option before them. Whether it be for good or bad. More often than not, the forced choice was a bad one except for whoever stacked the deck in that decision’s favor.
“Sometimes things spiral out of control.” Tommy said trying to be understanding. He turned to Lillian and she smiled knowing that she had understood.
“They did indeed spiral out of control Mr. Oliver.” Laocorn said. “Sulia was the only voice of reason there was, but I was too caught up in my own anger and need for revenge to listen. But through it all Sulia stayed by my side during my earlier descent.”
“Really?” Cassie asked. “How so?”
“Sulia helped me to create the actual Gaudeamas Corporation that you see here today, I went searching for the best help I could to be my personal best. I would need an army but even more so, if I wanted to make a dream of a ‘better world’ a reality I needed warriors of exceptional skill.” Laocorn said.
“The Elementals.” Jamie spoke up.
Laocorn nodded. “Panni is the only original member of my first Elemental group. Lyla, Sylphina and Ramon are the second Elemental group. Back then there were only three. Panni, Eric Von Hauer, a man with the power to control the wind, and Jamin, who like like his sister was the Elemental of Fire.”
“Panni joined me enticed by my ideals of a new world order. Jamin agreed because of something he felt was inside of me. As for Hauerï¿½” Laocorn stopped for a second. “Well Hauer was a mercenary who puts down humanity as weaker than he is. All he wanted was money. Once I had my elementals, I needed an army. Though I didn’t want to attract too much attentionï¿½so I made an alliance with someone most of you know very well and hate.” Laocorn breathed knowing this was one of the secrets that would most likely than not get them angry. He closed his eyes as he said it.
“I worked with the Rani.”
The resounding cry of “YOU WHAT?!” from Samantha said everything the Rangers had felt. The Zeo Rangers and Outsiders had shocks on their face while Cassidy, Alison and the Astro Rangers looked on confused.
“What the hell were you thinking?” Tyler then asked openly challenging Laocorn. “Didn’t you know what the Rani was capable of?”
Andros was confused and asked “Who’s the Rani?”
Jinx answered the question. “The queen bitch herself. She commits terrible things in the name of science. And she doesn’t care what she has to do to achieve those goals.”
Kat then spoke up. “She kidnapped several children and teenagers and used their life forces to create Psycho Ranger power rings to use against us. If it wasn’t for the Outsiders and Zeo Team II many of those young people would still be imprisoned today.”
“It’s also suspected that she had a hand in the upheaval that happened on Triforia when the Cybermen returned.” Adam said. “An upheaval that left Prince Trey in a cryotube near death thanks to his treacherous brother.”
“She also has contacts with the UAE in an advisory capacity but she is largely an independent.” Chelsea said. “She operates on Earth as head of the Ranitime Corporation.”
“And she’s also a Time Lord.” Samantha added. “Or as you would call herï¿½Shadow Grid.”
Andros looked on in shock as he heard the list of the Rani’s sins being played out before him. And he could only imagine that they were on page one. Looking at Sabrina he saw that her mouth was agape with shock. Looking at Laocorn she charged over to his desk and looked him dead in the eye.
“I’ve done some evil things over the millenniums, and Thomas over there will back me up when I say that, since he saw me do a small fraction of them.” Sabrina growled. “But this ‘Rani’ takes the cake! How could you ally yourself with such a monster?”
Laocorn looked up with sorrow in his eyes and answered the question Sabrina presented. “She had the technological resources I needed.” He answered deadpan. None of it was sugar coated.
“And what did the Rani have that you needed so badly?” Katarina asked. A touch of venom in her voice. Laocorn noticed it, but answered the question nonetheless.
“What I acquired from Rani was a form of mind control using a mask which when put onto someone would make them completely obedient to who ever was its commander. It had been one of the Rani’s earlier projects. Those under its control were nothing more than machines and would follow the programmed master.” Laocorn stated. “When finally it was when my sister first saw my first… ‘soldiers’ with the masks and that I had gained the other gauntlet piece that she knew I would go after the other pieces of the armor. Thankfully, she was able to escape from me.
“As time grew on my search for the remaining pieces intensified. But so did my sister’s resolve to stop me. She then went searching for the one person she thought could stop me.”
“Who?” Tyler asked.
“Terry Bogard.” Laocorn said with great respect in his voice. Recognition flashed in Tommy’s Rocky’s Adam’s and Tyler’s faces. Cassidy, Cassie and Alison also looked surprised when they heard Terry’s name.
“Are you talking about Terry ‘the Lone Wolf’ Bogard?” Rocky asked. “The man is a Martial Arts legend.
“I know. I met him once at my uncle’s cabin when he came to visit.” Tommy also said.
“I also read about him in those ‘Black Belt’ magazines I read from you once.” Samantha added.
“And wasn’t he that cousin you mentioned to me?” Cassidy asked Alison. Alison nodded yes.
“Terry told me the story” Alison explained. “But I wasn’t sure I could believe all of it, just enough to know to watch my back around Laocorn. Now that I’m hearing this, I’m starting to believe why.”
Laocorn nodded and continued the story. “My sister knew of his reputation and then convinced him to help her stop me from finding the armor. Joining Terry in this were his younger brother Andy, Andy’s then fiancee’ now wife Mai Shiranui, their friend then, and still current, Muay Thai, champion Joe Higashi.” Laocorn then closed his eyes. “Unfortunately in each of our first encounters Sulia’s chosen against myself and my Elementalsï¿½we came out as the victors. After those fights I had gained all but the final piece of the armor: the mask. By then my own mind wasn’t what it had been once I had started that damned crusade.
“However. Though I did not know the location of the last piece, I knew my sister would. I followed her and her friends to Jerusalem, Israel. There I had my Elementals intercept them. Hauer rendered Terry and Joe unconscious by using his power over the wind to take their breath away for while. The Elementals then confronted Sulia who was being guarded by Mai once Panni attacked her. Rather than allow Terry to be harmed, she gave her self up and Jamin brought her to me.”
“Wait. Why just Terry?” Lillian asked.
Laocorn shook his head. “I’m sorry. I guess that came off wrong. Sulia didn’t want any of them harmed… but most of all Terry.” Laocorn looked up at Sulia’s portrait for a moment. “It was because during this quest… she had fallen in love with him.” That also quieted everyone.
Laocorn then continued after a moment. “However Hauer decided once Jamin had warped out with my sister it would be time to kill them. There were two things though he didn’t take into account. Andy Bogard coming to the rescue and Billy Kane coming out of nowhere to actually help Andy Bogard rather than try to kill him. Andy and Billy have a long standing rivalry. Andy took out Hauer while Billy was fighting Panni. Mai came at Panni and was prepared to land a killing blow to her but Andy intervened letting her live. Panni then fled leaving Andy to wake his brother and best friend up and head for the Dead Sea, which was the location for the final piece of the Armor of Mars.”
“But they arrived too late to stop me.” Laocorn said with sadness. “The Temple of Mars rose out of the Dead Sea, and inside was the last piece of armor. I had left my ‘soldiers’ out at the entrance to deter any interruptions but something happened I didn’t expect. Panni came to their aid. She wanted to save me as my sister wanted to. As she and the others of Terry’s group took on the ‘soldiers’, Terry rushed inside to save Sulia and me, but was stopped by Jamin. Terry launched his Burn Knuckle attack while Jamin attacked with his Fire Knuckle. Their fists matched perfectly and then ki was building up all around then. It became so great that soon the very floor they were standing on was being blown apart.” Laocorn then looked down for a moment as he kept feeling the emotions rising him. All of the sadness and the emotion that was in him that could surface only from saying the truth of what he had kept a secret. “And then will come one of many moments I will never forget nor forgive myself happening. Jamin gave up and a blast of power knocked him into a pillar. He told Terry that both of them would’ve died, and the one who could save me should survive… Jamin sacrificed his life for mine and Sulia believing in Terry Bogard with all of his heart and soul.”
“Sounds like this ‘Terry Bogard’ would have made an excellent Ranger.” T. J. said. Laocorn nodded and said, “Yes he would have.” Before continuing.
“Howeverï¿½when Terry found me, I had already taken the last piece of the Armor of Mars. Before he could stop me, I placed it upon my head and underwent an amazing transformationï¿½I became a God as the legends saidï¿½” Laocorn said with distain and shame for himself. “ï¿½but the better term would be a devil.”
Alison looked over in Cassidy’s direction. Her eyes wide with surprise. “You okay Cass?” She whispered.
“Yeah.” Cassidy said. “I’m just thinking I could use my box of Fruit Loops right about now.” Ashley came up to her sister and her sister’s friend’s sides and said “I think others could use a box too.”
Both Alison and Cassidy looked at the Rangers’ faces, and they all expressed the shock and disbelief that Cassidy herself was feeling. “I guess I’m glad I’m not alone.” She said as Laocorn continued.
“With that power Terry was easily no match for me but then Andy, Mai, Joe, Billy and to my great shock then Panni came out and attacked me from all sides. With Panni’s help they were able to off balance me for a while… but I was only growing stronger and more insane with every second that passed. As the battle wore on, I thought of nothing but causing their deaths. It was when they were almost completely drained that one of Andy’s attacked harmed me. They pressed on their attack but I soon blasted back all of them but Terry. He and I came to the same conclusions of why I was harmed in my armï¿½ Sulia had stabbed her self in the arm.”
“What?!” they all said.
“As I said… Sulia and I were… were twins. We shared a very strong link. The Armor of Mars only strengthend it. Whatever pain she inflicted upon herself… I would feel.” Laocorn then closed his eyes as the worst part of it all was about to come. “I was so blinded by the power of the Armor and by rage that I… that I actually lashed out at my own sister and tried to kill her.”
Alison and Ashley both shared a look. They were in even more shock when Laocorn mentioned the link Laocorn and Sulia had, and wondered if they had a similar link with them being twins as well. “Cass?” Alison asked.
“Yeah?” Cassidy asked.
“You know that crack about everyone using a box of Fruit Loops right about now? Make mine a double.”
“Mine too.” Ashley said in agreement with her sister. Laocorn continued to tell his story.
“Terry however had taken the blast for her. To my own surprise he was still alive. I now wanted Terry dead more than anything. Just when I was about send the second blast… Sulia… Sulia…” Laocorn tried to get the words out but it was so hard for him. He felt tears coming down his face and felt himself reliving the memory as he felt ready to tell them what happened.
“DIE!” Laocorn shouted as he was ready to fire the blast that was sure to kill both Terry and his backstabbing sister.
Then before Terry or Laocorn could say or do anything, Sulia plunged the stone fragment, which she had used to stab herself in the arm, into her heart.
“ARGH!!!!” Laocorn cried as he placed his hand over where his heart would be.
Terry then turned around and saw Sulia falling to the ground. He then caught her in his arms. He looked into her hazel eyes. “Oh god no… Sulia what have you done!”
“Forgive me… Terry… I made the choice for you…” Sulia said weakly. “I can’t stand hurting anyone anymore just because of our fight… Please smash through the breastplate. It’s possible now.”
Terry shook his head. “I can’t! I won’t do it!”
“It’s the only way to stop him Terry.” Sulia said.
“You’ll die if I do that! I won’t let it happen!” Terry pleaded.
“It’s… my fate Terry. I was destined to remove the curse of Gaudeamus. I’m the only one that can take such hatred. The hatred the Gaudeamus left in this world and cause the world pain. I’ll take that hatred into the heavens and then it will no longer harm the human race.” Sulia said with her eyes closed.
“Sulia… Sulia please don’t make me do this!” Terry pleaded to her looking at the dark blue haired beauty that had done the thing he had vowed he would never allow to happen to him again.
She made him fall in love with her.
Sulia opened her eyes and looked at him contently. “I don’t have any regrets… because I was able to meet you.”
Terry looked at her longly and protectively.
“Terry, if you love me even just a little… please… please…” Sulia begged as she closed her eyes.
“WHAT A CROCK!” Laocorn shouted. “What sickening garbage. As if love actually means something in the world. The only thing that matters is POWER!”
Terry then rested Sulia gently on the ground and then got up and faced Laocorn.
“You fool! How can you even believe you have a chance of defeating me? Do you think you can beat me with YOUR broken body?” Laocorn mocked. “I WILL SHOW YOU DEATH AND THERE WILL BE NOTHING LEFT OF YOU EXCEPT STINKING MEAT!”
Terry then raised his right hand and clenched his hand into a fist. “Don’t you DARE underestimate me you arrogant bastard!”
“Enough with the lies! You die now!” Laocorn then fired off his shot which engulfed Terry. Laocorn smirked. “And so ended your pathetic mortal life! Humans can’t never defeat beings like me!” he let out a laugh of victory… until he saw a blue light coming through his own beam which was still going on.
Terry Bogard was not only surviving Laocorn’s killing blow, he was going through it using his own power.
“BURN KNUCKLE!!!” Terry shouted as he nailed the stunned Laocorn in the heart. The effect was immediate as the God Armor then disappeared and four golden coins fell to the ground.
“Ngh!” Laocorn cried falling down on his knees and completely naked. Terry stood over him in a defensive position not sure what would happen next. A few moments he went over to Sulia and picked her up and raised her head. “Is that… enough?” Terry asked.
Laocorn then looked forward and then saw Sulia on the ground. ~ Sulia… what are you… ~ He froze as he saw the fragment in her chest. Soon memories of everything he had done since he put on the first piece of the armor came to his mind only now was the rage and hatred gone and he could process all that he done with clear and sane mind. He reacted as anyone would under such a situation. He broke down in tears. “Oh no… Why… why did I do something so foolish…? My god… Sulia!”
Sulia smiled still with her eyes closed. “He’s back… He’s back to the way he used to be. Thank you… Thank you Terry… you kept your promise… though didn’t want to.” She turned her head around. Her vision was starting to fade but she saw all those that were around her. As she faced someone she spoke to that person. “Joe, thank you very much. It was wonderful spending time with you.”
Joe had his eyes closed with his fists clenched. ~ I don’t believe this… why… why did have to end like this!~
“Mai… Andy… please be happy together one day. And Mai, try not to make it so hard on Andy all the time.” Sulia said softly.
The younger Bogard was in silent thought with his own eyes closed and his thoughts were of sadness but he was also holding Mai close to him. Mai was looking at Sulia and Terry with eyes that were crying.
“Panni… thank you for coming back and helping us… please… look after my brother…” Sulia said to her.
If anyone were to look at Panni’s face they wouldn’t be able to tell if she crying or it was just the water from the fight coming down her hair and face. ~ I never thought too highly of you… thought you were a threat our dreams… that you were selfish… I was the selfish one. Not you. You are innocent… this shouldn’t be happening to you. ~
Sulia then looked into Billy’s direction. “I’ve never met you at all until now. Your motives for coming were not the same as the others… but I thank you for coming. For helping to save my brother… Billy isn’t it?”
Billy Kane nodded as he had his own eyes closed. ~ This isn’t right… I’m not a good guy. I fight. I’ve killed for Geese. I’ve done things that are wrong… but this is NOT right. ~
Sulia then reached out with her hand. “Terry… Where are you? I… I can’t see you…”
Terry took her hand in his own. “I am right here sweetheart.”
“I’m so sorry, Terry. I never got the chance to…” Sulia started but Terry interrupted her. “Shush. Don’t say anything…”
Terry just stroked Sulia as he held her body in his arms. Laocorn was still watching all of this and the tears were coming down his face. ~ What have I done… ~ was his only thought.
“Its okay. Sulia’s okay. I know you love me… because I love you too…” he then looked at her face and then the look on his face was now coming to tears. “But why…” he then raised his head up and let out a sorrow filled wailed. “WHY DO ALL THE WOMEN I LOVE HAVE TO DIE?!”
Laocorn let out his own scream, which echoed along with Terry’s scream. “SULIA!!!”
Laocorn just let the tears come down openly as he looked at the other Rangers. He couldn’t tell what their expressions were. Were they of scorn? Were they of pity? Were they of sorrow? Laocorn didn’t know.
The only one who had no doubt about her feelings was Alison Bogard. Laocorn looked in her direction and saw the face contorted into a mask of anger and rage. Alison then quickly got up and walked over to Laocornï¿½then she delivered a haymaker across his face sending him down to the ground. Standing over Laocorn, Alison glared at him.
“You should consider yourself damn lucky I didn’t use Crack Shot or Blazing Fist against you.” Alison said. “But you better believe I wanted to.”
Laocorn looked up at Alison. The tears coming down his face still but he understood where Alison was coming from. “I know. For your cousin’s sake.”
Alison nodded. “Terry is my favorite relative. And thanks to your lust for power you made the woman he grew to love kill herself to stop you. You may not realize this but your actions led to Terry being hurt in the worst way possible.”
“I do… and that makes what I did even worse.” Laocorn replied.
“What way is that?” Carlos asked.
“Long story. I’ll tell you later.” Cassie said. Like Alison, she knew of the Armor of Mars story secondhand, and was surprised to hear it told in such surprising detail. Cassie then looked at Laocorn dead in the eye. “But Sulia’s death wasn’t the end was it?” Laocorn smiled amazed by Cassie’s sense of perception.
“You would think that after such a tragedy… that would be the end… it wasn’t.” Laocorn said. “It was then that I saw that the four golden coins became liquid and flowed into the statue of Mars. Mars himself came back to life. The God of War spoke to us. He enjoyed everything that had happened during this quest. All the deaths. All the destruction. All the chaos. He found me a useful tool in bring about his revival and decided to reward us all with death. He fired first at Mai and just about everyone except Terry moved in front of her. At the time, I just wanted to die. I thought death would be enough to appease God.”
“But you’re still here. How did you survived?” Tommy asked.
“Because I took that blow.”
They all turned around and saw Panni come in the office. Laocorn was going to say something but Panni beat him to it. “Because… I love Laocorn.”
“WHAT?!!!” everyone in the room shouted.
“Yes, I love him.” Panni then went to explain. “As time went by I saw much of what Sulia saw. I saw that underneath all the rage and anger was one who was capable of such love. A love of life, a love of peace, and I had hoped a love of me.”
“Somewhere in the back of my mind I realized I loved Panni as well, but I also saw the love as a distraction taking me away from my single minded goal of aquiring the Armor. It was only after what happened next that I realized Panni’s love for me.”
Laocorn then continued. “Shortly Panni used her Sapphire Tidalwave technique to take the brunt of the attack she took the rest herself. She fell unconscious but alive as he caught her before she hit the ground. Mars gloated saying he was just warming up. However just as Mai, Andy, Joe and Billy were about to fight, Terry got up. The area around him started to glow with a bright blue aura. His face was still of sadness and he let out two blood red tears from his face. When he closed his eyes and bowed his head, he was filled with a powerful energy. His head snapped forward and he let off roar of wild wolf as he then charged and let loose this energy upon Mars. They fought on but Mars managed to hit Terry and knock him out. We were then separated from him by Mars who was breaking the temple apart and we could only watch as Terry laid helplessly on the ground and Mars was setting himself up for the killing blow. He had five of his fire fists ready to hit Terry at every possible direction. But then as Mars attacked… so did Terry. He let out a force of power so incredible that I have never felt anything like it. The energy was so intense we could only see it as a blinding blue light. When the light had ended and we saw there were no sounds of fighting still going on. We made are way back and found Terry on his knees and completely exhausted… but thankfully Mars was killed.”
“Wow!” Rocky said. “I wonder what our chances would have been if we were called on to face Mars.”
“Between Slim and none.” Panni said. “But it would not have been for lack of trying.” Laocorn then spoke again finishing his story.
“After we all had time to rest for a small bit and get our strength we all ended up separating. Billy Kane left on his own power, not feeling like he could help in away now considering he and the Bogards are on opposite sides. As for me and Panni… I more than once said that I wanted to die. Andy, Joe and Mai didn’t even look at me at all… but for a reason I still don’t understand why… Terry did.” Laocorn said remembering that moment.
“Aren’t you going to kill me…?” Laocorn asked Terry when he came over to him. Laocorn was wrapped in a blanket they had gotten from the jeep. He didn’t exactly feel like being naked and that was pretty much agreed by all.
“Sulia didn’t want you to die. She wanted you to live.” Terry said.
“Live… LIVE!” Laocorn shouted. “Live for what! For what I have done! For the people I have harmed! For the lives I have taken! Do you know what its like to lose family!”
Terry then hit him across the face. “Isn’t this what got you into this mess in the first place? Your own selfishness. Sulia told me you wanted the Armor for yourself so you avenge all you believed had wronged your family. You believed no one could understand what you’ve been through. Now that you’ve lost the armor you’re being selfish by trying to escape what you’ve created.” Terry closed his eyes. “And don’t think you aren’t the only one that has lost family… you told me yourself you know the people I’ve fought against and defeated. So you should also know my own history.”
Laocorn was about to say something but then froze. Like him, Terry’s own father had been murdered by a person once thought to be friend. Laocorn sighed as he closed his own eyes. “Arrogence is the sin of man and its fatal flaw. It turns people into monsters.”
“Do you want to let Sulia’s death be for nothing?” Terry asked him. “She gave her life for yours. You have a second chance Laocorn… don’t waste it.” Terry then walked away leaving Laocorn alone but then Laocorn turned his head to Terry. “Terry!” Terry turned around and faced him. “… thank you.”
Terry nodded, saying nothing as he walked back to the jeep.
Laocorn looked over the ocean and saw the sun rising over it. ~ Sulia… I’ll make my life mean something. I promise you… I won’t let your death be wasted… or let your memory be forgotten. ~
“Since that day, I’ve dedicated this entire corporation, my fortune and my life to help preserve the world that my dear sister loved so much.” Laocorn said. “I then destroyed all of the masks I had received from the Rani and resolved to end all connects between Ranitime Corporation and my company as quickly as possible. I also knew though I needed help.”
“I was the one that suggested to Laocorn to begin selection of newer group of Elementals. With Jamin dead and Hauer having mysteriously disappeared once we got back to Jerusalem, I was the only one left.” Panni said.
“I hired a private investigator to find Lyla. She was the first to be found. We made our way to Brazil and told her about Jamin. As a matter of honor to her brother she became part of our group.” Laocorn said. Cassidy however recognized this part of the story and said. “This investigator. It was Joe wasn’t it?”
“Yes Cassidy. The investigator in question was Joe Dominguez. And no he does not know of my past. As of this day, only you are made completely aware of this story.” Cassidy then nodded in understanding and turned to the other Rangers. “Joe Dominguez was my father’s partner in the SFPD, and a family friend.” She explained.
Laocorn then continued. “Sylphina was next. We found her at Arcadia Academy last year on the day I went there with Lyla and Panni to make my intentions clear to the Rani that I wanted all ties broken off with her. The Rani had scheduled Sylphina for execution believing she was worthless when in fact Sylphina was actually hiding her powers from Rani because she preferred death to allowing her wind powers to be corrupted by the Rani.”
“About six months ago we found Ramon in Mexico. He was looking for work to support his family, a family made of 10 brothers, 8 sisters, his parents and his comatose daughter, who had be left in that state thanks to a drunk driver which also killed his wife.” Laocorn said solemnly. “We moved the entire family to a better place than where they were living at the time and they are all being taken care of. With Ramon we had our complete team. A true team of Elementals. One for each of the four primal forces. After that I’ve been keeping watch on the movements of the UAE and the various other forces threatening the earth. The one that I considered the worst were the Psycho Rangers. I don’t think I really need to give any reasons of how bad they are since you already know them. I wanted to get contact with one of the Ranger Teams and ask to provide them help. However I wanted to first contact a team that works and fights similar to my own group.”
“And you chose the Outsiders.” Tommy concluded. Laocorn nodded.
“I was the one that made first contact with Lillian, Jamie and Christina. I gave an invitation to their team to meet Laocorn and hear his proposal.” Panni said.
“Of course they were wary of me. They didn’t know exactly what kind of angle if any I had. We decided to have a fight to test each other out.” Laocorn said.
“And then of course Biilly and the Psycho Rangers had to come and interrupt.” Jinx said but then smirked. “It ended up being there mistake the Elementals took them down and managed to finish off Kaat and Daavid for good, while we fought Biilly.”
“And of course the weasel had to cheat with hidden explosives and caught us by surprise.” Lillian added.
Christina nodded. “If it wasn’t for Laocorn coming when he did…” she trailed off thinking about how close Biilly’s claws had been to her throat.
Laocorn then looked at them. “As Christina was saying, I came to their aid and defeated Biilly and smashed his Power Ring, the last of them, and in so doing freed the soul of Justin Stewart.”
Laocorn then looked on at all of them. “And that Rangers is my story. All of it. I have no more secrets left. Now that you have heard it and know my past you have a decision to make. After hearing what I’ve told you, do you really want to have an association with me? Nothing would make me feel better than for you to say ‘yes’ and I would help you in anyway that I can.” Laocorn paused. “But if you don’t I understand and will respect your decision. I’ll step out of your lives forever if it is your wish.” Laocorn looked at Tyler and the Outsiders. “I’m sorry I didn’t say anything about my past soonerï¿½but I thought if I told it to you the very first dayï¿½that you would automatically label me as a person no better than Rita or Zedd. And now I might have done so anyway. I’m sorry. I just hope we can still work together.” He then stepped back and faced all the Rangers. “The choice my friends is now yours.”
Tommy and Andros both shared a look. As they turned to Tyler he himself gave a nod. Turning to their respective teams they all too had the same look. Finally Tommy turned to Laocorn and said. “We need to discuss this with ourselves if you don’t mind.”
“Fair enough.” Laocorn said. “Will my balcony be sufficient?”
“That will be fine.” Tommy said as the Zeos, Alison, the Outsiders and the Astros all adjourned outside onto Laocorn’s spacious balcony. As the screen door closed Laocorn turned away from the group hoping for the best.
“Well say what you want about Laocorn.” Rocky said. “He sure does have a good view of the city.”
“Yeah.” Katarina said in agreement. “But that still doesn’t answer our question. Do we stay with Laocorn knowing what he has done?”
“Well Zordon obvously trusts him.” Tommy said. “And must have some sort of agreement with him, or he would not have been on screen with the others.”
“And some of us have been evil in the past.” Sabrina added. Tommy and Kat both nodded, as did the Outsiders who were recruited to be an evil army of Biilly’s. “And when we have been freed from our respective evil controls we all sought atonement. Can we not say that Laocorn deserves the same courtesy?” Even though everyone felt a ligering doubt. A doubt Lillian had mentioned.
“But the Armor of Mars? If that was as powerful as Laocorn had said.”
“And I have no doubt that it was.” Tyler added. “What would he have done with it had he not been stopped?”
“What would any of us have done?” Samantha added. “If we sought that power, could any of us have said that we could have done any different? Mars could have possessed any of us as he did with Laocorn. We’re all capable of grief. None of us are above revenge.”
Jinx nodded. “We probably would have done the same in those circumstances.”
Andros then said his peace. “From what I could hear about the Armor its power could probably have given Dark Specter a run for his money.”
“And Dark Specter is plenty powerful.” Sabrina added. “And if Specter wore that armor he would not be as remorseful as Gaudeamas is now.”
“But what if he gives into his darkness again?” Alison asked. “What if he becomes the monster he was during the Armor of Mars. Only he uses a different weapon?”
“How can he do that?” Andros asked. “His sister is dead.” Andros then felt a pang of sorrow in him as he reminded himself about Karone. Zhane and Sabrina both offered their leader comfort as if knowing what his words meant to him personally.
“It may not be a sister.” Alison said. “It could be something else. No one knows what will happen tomorrow.” Everyone nodded again knowing Alison had a point as well.
“Well Cassidy?” Adam asked turning to her. You’ve been quiet during all this. Do you have anything to say about all this?”
Cassidy, for her part, was quiet during all the discussion. She was not sure she understood all that was said, or could comprehend all there was about Laocorn, the Rangers, and the Armor of Mars. But somewhere in her the answer was there, and Cassidy communicated that answer to all the Rangers present.
“I won’t pretend that I understood all that was just said, because there is a lot about being a Ranger that I don’t understand, and will still take me a while to comprehend. Things like aliens attacking San Francisco, me being a teenaged superhero fighting off aliens looking to enslave us or kill us, and also finding I now have someone looking to kill me and take my powers for herself. But there are a few things that I do know, and those are things that come from being a cop’s daughter and seeing my father work as he brings in the worst humanity has to offer.” All the Rangers present seemed to be taken in by Cassidy’s words.
“When I see my father at work, I see him bringing in a lot of criminals. Pimps, robbers, murderers, most of them are just people who have taken a wrong turn. Some know what they do and just don’t care, or they have a point to prove, and there are others who commit crimes just because they get a kick out of it. I listened to Laocorn’s story, and I can say that he did some terrible things. I may not understand it all, but I do know he is sorry for what he did. He lost his sister, and that will be with him for the rest of his life. But the Laocorn Gaudeamas that I know isn’t a monster. I’ll always remember him as someone who tried to do good for this city. And as such, I’ll stand with him just as he stood with the Outsiders and helped them when they needed it.”
“But what if the Armor of Mars thing repeats itself?” Alison said. “What if he gives in to that darkness again?”
“I don’t think it will Alison. But if it does, I pray I’ll have the strength to stop him like Sulia and Terry did. And I hope all of you will as well.” The Rangers and Outsiders all listened to Cassidy’s words and found themselves agreeing with her. Tyler looked at the Ranger teams before him and he knew some of them didn’t have squeaky clean pasts, but they had managed to overcome their dark times and do great good for the city. He believed Laocorn Gaudeamas was no exception. Looking at the Outsiders he saw by the looks in their eyes that they thought the same thing.
Tommy looked at his Zeo Team, and Andros looked at his Astro team, and they too agreed with Cassidy. They also nodded looking to give Laocorn a chance. Alison still had some apprehension, but she agreed to do the same.
“Thanks guys.” Cassidy said. “Let’s go inside.”
Laocorn watched as the Rangers and Outsiders all walked in. Tyler took the front and adressed Laocorn. “We’ve decided.”
Laocorn nodded and then asked “And what is that decision?”
“Well other than the fact that I’ll have to have people call me by my nickname from now on.” Terry ‘Jinx’ Jones had said, then Tyler spoke again. “We’ve decided to stay allied with you.” Laocorn smiled grateful for the Outsider’s decision. He then cast a look at Cassidy who gave a sly wink as if saying she helped do the last of the convincing.
“We’re all going to Cassidy’s to help smooth things over with her family.” Tyler said. “We’ll see you later.” Laocorn nodded as the Rangers headed towards the Elevator. Cassidy waited for a moment then turned to Laocorn who had a smile of gratitude on his face.
“Thank you Cassidy. For everything.”
“Don’t mention it.” She said with a smile. “You’re actually kind of cool when you’re not a bad guy.” Laocorn then chuckled at Cassidy’s remark and Panni found herself laughing too.
“Here’s hoping I don’t become a bad guy again.” Laocorn said as Cassidy headed towards the elevator and went to join the other Rangers at her father’s.
“So when do we start calling you Jinx again?” Christina asked as everyone went down glass elevators to the lobby.
“Whenever Terry Bogard shows up. That way it will be less confusing.” Jinx said as everyone met at the lobby. Samantha then asked Cassidy “So where do you live?”
“Not far away.” Cassidy said. Alison then went up to Cassidy and told her that she had to get back home. “Grandpa and my cousin will be worried.”
Cassidy smiled and hugged her friend. “Take care. I’ll see you later.”
“Cool.” Alison said as she and the Astros went back to the fire house. Zhane was transported back to the Megaship where Dimetria and DECA tended to him.
“I’ve got to go pick up something at the penthouse. I’ll catch up later.” Jinx said. The others waved by and Samantha said for her to be careful.
“Hey aren’t I usually?” Samantha decided not to answer that as she continued walking towards Nash’s. Jinx went her own way feeling good about herself. All the problems with Laocorn had been resolved and he was now officially allied with them. Though she had an urge to fight then.
“Oh look! It’s the punk I owe a beating to!”
Jinx turned around Psycho Yellow looking at her. She smirked as she then morphed. “Well if it isn’t the slut herself. What did Biilly ask you to do? Get your ass kicked or did he throw you out?”
Psycho Yellow just stood there. Zeo Punk wasted no time as she then Zeo Head Rammed the Psycho Ranger.
Only the image dissolved into a bunch of tin cans which she crashed into.
“What the hell?” Zeo Punk muttered.
“Actually I dumped the bastard after beating the crap out of him.”
Zeo Punk froze she turned around and saw Triini unmorphed. Her voice wasn’t whiny but dark.
“You… Triini the Billion dollar slut dumped Biilly.” Zeo Punk said. “You don’t have it in you.”
“YAMI-BARAI!” she cried shooting her hand down. Zeo Punk could only stare as the purple flames hit her hard and she went flying into the wall. She looked up at her foe, grateful that she had morphed when Triini had did what ever the hell she just did.
“Lesson one bitch. Triini is dead.” She said as she took off the black wig and let her purple hair come out. She then took out contacts so that Zeo Punk saw her red eyes. “My name is Kali Yagami. Your name will soon be mud.”
“We’ll see about that.” Zeo Punk said as she then flung one of her knives at Kali only to hit air as Kali had disappeared. However she had left her voice and laughter in the area.
“HAHAHAHA! Is that all you have got! The great defiant Terry Jones can only put up this much a fight. You’re not even good enough to be my warm up before I take on Alison Bogard.” Kali’s voice spoke.
Zeo Punk’s head shot up. “What that’s all about?”
“Ah. So you’ve met the Lady Bogard. All the more interesting. I was planning on letting Zordon and the Rangers know of my existence soon enough, especially sis.” Kali smiled. “I’m looking forward to meeting my sister again.”
“You think I’ll let you kill any of them…” she was interrupted by Kali’s laughter. “Oh on the contrary little girl. My dear sister Trini will most likely be the only one of you I will leave alive.”
Zeo Punk was left confused by those words but then looked around. “Show yourself you coward.”
“As you wish.” Kali then appeared. Zeo Punk started to run to her but then stopped in shock as she looked at what was happening now.
Kali’s body was literally on fire. Purple flames were all around her.
“What in the name of God?” Zeo Punk muttered.
“Your God couldn’t compare to the power of my god as you will now experience… ONI-YAKI!!!” She then rushed at Zeo Punk and then jumped up in the air using a flying uppercut on her. As she spun around she was surrounded by purple flames.
Zeo Punk could only scream in total agony as she felt engulfed by the dark force that Kali wielded. She then fell into a wall and then fell to the ground and demorphed. She lay unconscious as her arms were still on fire.
Kali then picked up a trash can and then dumped the garbage onto Jinx which actually put the fires out. Kali smirked as she looked down at her. “That’s where you belong. With the rest of the gutter trash. I hope Alison puts up a better fight than you did.” Kali picked up Terry ‘Jinx’ Jones and then the two disappeared in purple flames.
On the patio of Nash’s apartment both Tommy and Tyler looked at Cassidy as they asked questions about her. Serious questions.
“What type of fighting ability do you have?” was the first one Tyler asked. Cassidy quickly answered.
“Well Alison has been teaching me a little kickboxing. I’ve also learned some self defence when I was younger. Haven’t kept up with it all that well. Just enough to keep in shape.”
Tommy nodded. In the back of his mind he had expected this. When the Rangers first formed not all of them were expert fighters. When they had the power it merely enhanced and brought forth whatever potential each Ranger had. Billy wasn’t a great fighter and neither was Kat when they started out. Mostly because their focus lied in intellectual pursuits and dance respectively. Kim was a gymnist and also had to adapt a fighting style to her abilities.
“When we get back to the Power Chamber I’ll see to it that you learn some moves. Either I, Jason or one of the others will help you out.” Cassidy nodded and added “Alison had the same idea. She said that one day the power might dissapear on me.”
“She’s right.” Tyler said. “Also when you come back home the Outsiders will also help you with fighting. Jamie and Lillian are seasoned fighters and Katarina knows a lot about kickboxing so she can help you as well.”
“Aren’t you concerned about S’Hera?” Cassidy asked.
“We can deal with her.” Tyler said. “Besides the fighing lessons can qualify as quality time with friends, not exactly Ranger related business.” Tyler sighed for a minute then said “Sorry.”
“I know what you mean.” Tommy said in understanding. “I’m not a fan of walking on egg shells with the Galactic Council either.” Tommy then turned to Cassidy and laid in his final point. “You realize that this is serious business. It’s non fun and games. Someone can get hurt orï¿½”
“I know.” Cassidy said. “I never expected it to be. I know the risks, and I’m willing to accept them. And I know you and everyone will do all you can to keep one of your teams from becoming the next Jessie Belle.”
“It’s kind of ironic though.” Tommy started to say. “Jessie’s death started this whole chain of events. From you being chosen for the powers, to Josie becoming Circuit Breaker, to the Cylons attacking. And Rocky, don’t be surprised if he’s a little distant from you.”
“I know. I really don’t want to take Jessie’s place.” Cassidy answered. Then she pointed at the doorway where Nash was looking in. Clearly he had heard the entire conversation and then went to speak to his daughter.
“I don’t like this.” Nash said deadpan. “I know you know the risks. But so do I. And nothing would have pleased me more than to see you say no to these powers. But you didn’t. So I figure the best I can do is help you out if you need it. If you’re ever in a tight spot, and you need my help. Don’t hesitate to call.”
“Thank you daddy.” Cassidy said as she hugged her father. Nash then turned and looked straight into Tommy’s eyes as he said his peace. “This little girl, means more to me than anything in the world.”
Tommy nodded understanding Nash’s point perfectly. “Yes sir I know that.”
“Good. Enough said.” Nash said as he, Tommy, Tyler and Cassidy then walked off the balcony and into his living room where his sister Stacy and father Nick were all sitting in front of a T. V. along with Kat the Outsiders and the Rangers “What’s going on here? Nash asked.
“A total disaster.” Stacy said as she looked at the T. V. Nash then asked where it came from.
“Bought it with the proceeds from the sale of my property.” Nick said very sure of himself.
“Must be one hell of a T. V.” Adam said.
“Hey Cassidy. Your grandfather seems like a nice guy.” Kat said. Cassidy couldn’t help but smile.
“Yeah. Everybody loves him.” Cassidy then gave her grandfather a hug but Nash was still trying to figure out why his father would sell a half acre of land for a television. Then he asked Nick.
“You mean you traded a half acre of Larksburg Bayview for a T. V. set?”
“Not the T. V. Nash. What’s on it.” Stacy said hoping to clarify a little better for her brother.
“Got a satellite hook up. This is Delmar. Fifth race.”
“Did you buy three hundred thousand dollars of racing tickets grandpa?” Cassidy asked.
“If he did I hope he wins.” Samantha said.
“Nope. I bought a horse.”
Everyone turned to look at Nick but it was Nash who asked “What?”
“Number six. Mr. Woody.” Stacy said dropping the last bomb.
Nash looked more confused that ever. He then asked Nick “What the hell do you know about horses?”
“I know I always wanted one.” was Nick’s answer. “Besides, all this talk about leaving something behind made me realize that I didn’t want to leave this planet with anything undone.”
“So this horse is going to live here in your room with us? I mean what?” Nash looked to Stacy wondering what to make of what his father was up to.
“Don’t be ridiculous.” Nick said. “Now I’ve got him paddocked at Delmar for the season. He’s got room, board, trainer, the whole bit.”
Tommy then spoke up. “And we’ve got a friend over at Angel Grove. She loves horses.”
“Yeah. Kim would love to look after Mr. Woody.” Rocky then said.
“Well I appreciate the advice Rocky.” Nick said. “If I need her I’ll be sure to call her.” Nick then turned to Cassidy and said “I think these friends are keepers.”
“No doubt about that grandpa. No doubt about that.” Cassidy said as the Rangers nodded. Then they turned to watch the race.
Nash’s attention however was still on the horse, so he then laid down the million dollar question. “Well, how are we going to pay for all this?”
And Nick had the million dollar answer. “With the winnings son.” Then on the screen the bell started and the horses were out of the gate.
Nash, Stacy, Cassidy and the Rangers all sat or stood in front of the T. V. while Nick sat off to the side watching his family and Cassidy’s friends cheer for Mr. Woody. “Go Mr. Woody! Come on Mr. Woody!” they all shouted. Nick continued to sit smirking as he turned his attention back to the horse race and watched Mr. Woody run.
Mr. Woody got to a slow start but he started to gain ground. Cassidy’s family, and the rest of the Rangers kept cheering on Mr. Woody as he ran faster and faster hoping to be first across the finish line. Fortunately for Nash’s piece of mind Mr. Woody won.
“ALL RIGHT!!!” Nash shouted as a heard of whoops and cheers let loose throughout the whole apartment. As the cheers died down Kat then heard her cell phone going off and went to get it. “Hello?”
“Guess I’m lucky you didn’t change your cell phone number.”
Kat then dropped the phone as she heard the voice.
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