Fires of Olympus Part 2
The Erlion Spaceport was one of the main hubs of the Intergalactic Police Force. The security arm of the council that dealt with prisoners that did not warrant the need for a Ranger team. But that in no means diminished their importance. For in many sectors of space the IGPF were the ones called in to handle many skirmishes when Ranger teams were nowhere available.
The IGPF accomplished this goal by the use of their manpower and ship fleets. Five of their vessels had achieved great notoriety. Four in particular were stationed on Erlion and helped greatly in terms of prisoner transfers. The four ships: Phoenix, Eagle, Liberator and Scorpio had been created using Ranger technology donated by the Phantom Ranger of Zordonia. Each ship had been given a special function should they have been given an escort.
Phoenix and Eagle were the lead ships; both capable of high speed travel. The Eagle served as the command ship, relaying data back to the ships they were escorting, while the Phoenix was the troubleshooter, meeting possible troublemakers before they got too near. Scorpio was the troop and supply ship, providing a refueling bay for fighters that accompanied the prison ships. Scorpio was virtually defenseless, although it did have the most advanced shielding in the IGPF arsenal, after Liberator .
Phoenix was a large blue and red spacecraft, originally fitted for planetary use. The Phoenix was fast mainly because of its small mass compared to most ships. The twin engines at the rear provided most of its thrust, with additional power from the additional engines fitted to each wingtip. Crewed by five, the Phoenix was capable of releasing three one-man fighters and transforming into a fortress.
Eagle had originally been designed for exploration. Powered by its four rear mounted engines the ship did not have any defenses of its own. However, it did sport the largest holding bay in the fleet and always had a squadron capable of dealing with any attackers. To prevent any suicide gambits wiping out its vital passenger Eagle was able to release the docking bay into space and use its own limited shield to provide protection.
Scorpio was a troop and supply frigate. It was primitive and difficult to fly, but had regenerating shields that put most ships to shame. Scorpio's main purpose was always to provide a rear guard against pursuers. If necessary, the Scorpio could ram an incoming ship and survive intact.
The Liberator was one of only two ships made in its class. Originally built for the colonists of KO-35 it had at one point been known as the Kappa Megaship. The exact designers of the ship were unknown, except they had at some point been involved in a deadly war. The Liberator had been found with its crew in hibernation by the Phantom Ranger and taken to the secret world inside Zordonia. There they had been revived and trained to form the backbone of the Galaxy Marshals. The Liberator was refitted, but the crew liked the ship and the commander of the IGPF arranged to purchase the craft and have the Zord interfaces removed.
What made the Liberator truly unique was its computer system. On KO-35 the Astro Defenders used an AI unit known as DECA. The Liberator’s computer Zen made DECA look like what Earthlings referred to as a ZX81. Zen was more than a simple computer. He had subcomputers handling every task on the ship and everything was linked back to him. Whereas DECA could only monitor the different parts of the Astro Megaship, Zen could monitor, control and repair any part of the Liberator from almost any damage.
The main design feature about the Liberator was its four part drive system. The main power and hyper rush system was located at the rear of the ship. From out it resembled a large green ball pulsating with energy. The engines were linked into a long fuselage to the seven-man control bay at the front. From the main fuselage three detached engines were suspended, forming an equilateral triangle. Each engine was the length of the main fuselage, culminating with a powerful weapons array near the front. From the rear the Liberator looked like a large green ball, but from the front it looked like a four pronged death machine.
Despite these four powerful ships the fifth one put them to shame in terms of size, strength and firepower. In fact, one of its landing bays could hold all four of the ships as well as a contingent of its own fighters. It was as big as a city, two miles long, and had an aura of mystery as well as a sense of great power.
This ship was known as the Battlestar Pegasus .
It was a gunship, with cannons spread all over it designed to hold off large-scale attacks. It’s two landing bays held an array of fighters that could be used for aerial combat with any enemy that had fighter capabilities. The fighters found on the Pegasus , known as Vipers, were in fact used as models for the fighters the IGPF used.
Twenty Earth years ago the Pegasus appeared, coming out of a time/space warp at what was determined to be hyper-rush speed. Such a feat was believed impossible for a ship that size, but somehow the Pegasus was able to accomplish it. The IGPF moved in to intercept but no matter how many ships they could rustle up they had no chance of trying to stop the runaway battlestar.
It was believed that the massive ship would crash into Eltar, but the vessel then stopped just short of the planet, having exhausted its Tylium fuel. As expeditions went on board the massive ship they found very few signs of the previous crew. And those that did survive seemed to be dead upon arrival. When they reached the bridge they found a body in the seat of what was believed to be the command chair. Computer records that were recovered from the Pegasus’s computer indicated that the commander of the ship was a man named Cain.
Cain was a military genius who led his people to many military victories, according to the Pegasus’s computer info. Scientists went on board the vessel to figure out what made the massive ship function, and what secrets it held. What they found was surprising beyond belief.
Inside the computer banks scientists found out about a civilization of humans who lived on twelve planets: Leos, Sagitara, Virgon, Piscon, Scorpio, Caprica, Taura, Aeries, Libra, Aquaria, Gemon and Cancer. All twelve planets united by ties of race, religion, heritage and beliefs, as well as being united under the threat of war. War with a malevolent alien race known as the Cylons.
The Cylons, according to the computer was a race of machines that had evolved from reptiles. Their sole objective was to the extermination of all humans in the universe, and to the subjugation of other races they came across. If any continued to pose a threat, then the Cylons would see to it that those races would meet the same fate that they had in store for humans.
The star system the Pegasus had come from could not be accurately accessed by Eltarian stellar cartographers. In fact it was believed that the Pegasus came from a distant corner of the universe altogether. One that neither the council or the UAE was able to reach just yet. But they could not discount the information the ship provided about the Cylons. Council members believed that if the Cylons ever came their way then worlds needed to be prepared for them.
Military hardliners led to propose a restoration project for the massive battlestar. As engineers tore the ship inside and out, repairing systems that had long since been inactive, and finding fuel sources for its energy needs. Brak was one who supported this proposal and in twenty years time the Pegasus was fully operational and ready to fight.
The battlestar was remanded to the custody of the IGPF for use as a patrol battlewagon in case there were serious fires that needed to be put out quickly. The chosen commander was one from KO-35, a Commander Kinwon, who led the resistance movement against Makkarah when she attacked the colony. When the evacuation made it to Eltar, or at least those evacuees that survived, Kinwon expressed his outrage at the council. By his side was his aide Tykwa who supported the Commander in his outrage.
The council president believed that some sort of consolation should have been granted to Kinwon and the surviving Kerovans, so he appointed Kinwon the Commander of the Pegasus in the hopes that whatever happened to KO-35 would never happen again anywhere else. Kinwon accepted the job, but even though the Pegasus was about to go into active duty, there wasn’t much for the massive ship to do. So for now all the ship did was sit at the Elysian Space dock, and Kinwon soon realized that the job of him as Pegasus’s commander was supposed to keep him nice, docile, and out of the way. No action came forth that warranted the Pegasus’s attention. So it, and the crew sat waiting for a call to battle that would never come.
Until now, or so the computer believed.
For while the battlestar stayed moored at the Space dock, it was still connected to the Eltarian central computer which analyzed all official happenings on Colony Worlds, and Colony protectorates. One of those planets was a world called Earth, where an old enemy had appeared. An enemy the computer recognized from its many file entries in its own mainframe.
The Cylons were approaching Earth.
Inside his quarters Kinwon sat in contemplation over all that had happened in his life. The fall of his homeworld, the appointment to command this ship he was on, and the quiet that took place. A quiet that would soon be disturbed as a claxon sounded in his quarters.
Kinwon looked around wondering what was happening until he saw the monitor on the wall of his quarters, and the information that appeared. Information that said that the enemy of those that constructed the ship he was on were here, and in Earth’s planetary system.
Kinwon had to do something.
He called for his first officer Tykwa and told him to meet him in the shuttle bay.
He was going to see what help he could get from the council.
And if he got none?
Well Kinwon had ideas about that too.
The Q Continuem
No real place
No real time
Inside his home Q watched as his son and his two friends Light and Darke watched on their big screen T. V. as their game unfolded before them, a game that had gone out of their control.
“I don’t believe it!” Light shouted in outrage. “Who are all these new guys that have been coming on? I thought we weren’t going to allow these guys to play. “
“I’m surprised at you Light. ” Darke said. “These are your pieces and you didn’t want to use them?”
“Oh and what about the pieces you’ve got now? Geese Howard? Billy Kane? The Gorgons? Did you want to put them in the game?” Darke got Light’s point and felt his own outrage at the game being out of his control. “It’s that bloody Count Iblis!” Darke said.
“Yeah. ” Light said. “Ever since he showed up and took our game away from us he’s been ruining it. All these new guys, all these new directions, we didn’t want them there. “
“We got to get our game back!” Darke shouted. “Iblis’s ruining it. “
Young Q sat in the chair furthest away watching Light and Darke speak. “I don’t believe it. The two so-called ‘mortal enemies’ are agreeing on something. And Darke, I’m surprised at you. I thought you were Iblis’s biggest fan. “
“Yeah well…I also think I’m getting into S Club 7 now. ” Darke said. “They really are a hot group on the many Earth’s I’ve seen. “
“Well they are a breath of fresh air, especially since the Americans have been exposed to a steady diet of N’Sync, Backstreet Boys and Brittney Spears. ” Light agreed and added, “Not to mention Christina Agulaira and Jessica Simpson. “
“Wasn’t she tuned into a doll in the Twilight Zone?” Young Q asked. Light and Darke shrugged their shoulders as if saying ‘maybe’, but Young Q continued to press on.
“This love of S Club wouldn’t have to do with the rumors that N’Sync, the Backstreet Boys and Brittney Spears are servants to Count Iblis would it?” Young Q kidded. Light and Darke both shook their heads before asking “They are? What about Simpson and Agulaira?”
“Agulaira maybe. Simpson can’t be since she was turned into a doll by some human child. ” Young Q then sighed as he grew tired of the conversation the three were having. “This is getting us nowhere. ” Young Q said as he then turned to his father and asked “Dad, can you get the game back for us? Iblis’s just ruining it. “
Q sat at the table looking over his checkbook. He found that he owed Jean-Luc Picard another favor for helping to save humanity again, and needed to figure out how best to pay him back when he picked up his son’s request. “Son, we’ve gone through this before. Iblis has the game, the pieces are choosing their own path. “
“But they are not supposed to do that!” Light shouted.
“We are!” Darke added. Young Q then turned to his father and pleaded. “Please dad. There must be something we can do. ” Q thought for a moment, and then an idea popped into his head. An idea of who could take on Count Iblis.
“We can’t. ” Q said. “But I know who can. ” Q then teleported out leaving Light, Darke, and Young Q behind to watch the damage that Iblis had ushered in. A Cylon base star had appeared ready to rain it’s fire on the last human colony below.
“Oh now I would not have done this!” Darke said.
“Don’t worry. When we get the game back we’ll fix all of this. ” Light said. In the meantime Light, Darke and Young Q all watched the spectacle unfold.
Inside the Council Chambers of Eltar, away from the childlike affairs of the Q, pandemonium erupted. Pandemonium High Councilor Jefran was having difficulty controlling. Pandemonium that could mean life and death for a whole civilization. Concepts the Q had no real awareness of.
Jefran looked at the Council seats all around him. So many new faces adorned the chairs of people he knew. Faces Jefran didn’t really trust. The only ones he knew he could trust were Sygnus and Brak, and the ones he knew that he couldn’t trust were S’Hera and Darkonda who retained their original seats and seemed to get more powerful with each new council appointment and election. They were gaining power and Jefran knew it.
He also knew they wouldn’t be afraid to use it once they got enough. But Jefran couldn’t find an opening to use against them. The affairs of the galaxy always distracted him. One such affair stood in the Council Chambers now, an affair that went by the name of Kinwon who addressed the council before him.
“Councillors. I come to address a matter of great urgency. My ship, the Battlestar Pegasus has informed me that a great and ancient evil has awaken. An evil that could well have ties to the Dark One himself. I trust you are all aware of the Cylon forces that have appeared on Earth. ” The Councilors all nodded saying that they knew as Kinwon continued.
“Well the Pegasus has also detected ships that are of Cylon manufacture, based on the knowledge we were able to acquire from her computer banks. Apparently the Pegasus ‘s former commander knew that the Cylons would appear and wanted us to be ready for them. “
“What do you propose Kinwon?” Sygnus asked.
“I wish to take the Pegasus to Earth. Assist the Rangers in helping to stave off this Cylon threat. ” Murmurs seemed to spread throughout the chambers until Darkonda spoke up with a resounding “NO!!!”
All eyes turned to look at the Mephistan as he said his peace. S’Hera by his side. “Our forces are stretched too thin since we retook Arianas. ” Darkonda stated. “We cannot waste valuable capital on a world that is not even a council member. “
“Not a member?” Sygnus shouted in outrage. “But Earth is a council protectorate well within our borders. “
“A hotly contested protectorate. ” S’Hera added. “That has three Ranger teams, and one UNSANCTIONED team guarding it under the command of two Morphin Masters and four others they can call upon. They don’t need any more forces. Besides we have to increase our own forces that have been weakened after Martok’s taking of Arianas. “
“But if the Cylons run rampant. No one will be safe. They won’t stop with Earth. They’ll go to each world exterminating every life form they come across. ” Kinwon pleaded. Darkonda wasn’t bothered in the least. Neither was S’Hera.
“The Rangers stationed on Earth can hold their own. ” Darkonda said. “And if they attack any council member worlds then we will deal with them then. ” Mentally S’Hera added ~ Any non human worlds~ Kinwon however picked up that thought even if the other council members didn’t which only made him more and more incensed. “You always find ways to rationalize things don’t you? You care about nothing but yourself and your own quest for power!”
Darkonda gave the look of being outraged and shouted at Kinwon. “I resent that accusation! We must do what is best for the council and the worlds we already have under our protection. We can’t always send resources to every primitive backwater that needs help. “
“Earth is not just any primitive backwater. It is special. Somehow our destinies, the destinies of all our people, depend on its protection. ” This intrigued Sygnus who asked “How so?”
Kinwon looked at all the councilors and spoke again. “As I looked through the Pegasus ‘s records I came across evidence that a lot of our worlds in the council may have been visited by the very same individuals that had created the Pegasus itself. A race that was enroute to Earth. “
“Earth?” Jefran asked. “Why would they go there?”
“I’m not at liberty to say. But in my heart I promise I will not bow down and let the human race be defeated!” With that Kinwon charged out of the chambers outraged at the council’s actions, or lack thereof. When the meeting adjourned S’Hera and Darkonda faced each other and discussed their plans. “Do you think Kinwon will take his ship and go to Earth anyway?” S’Hera asked.
“Whether he does or not is of little consequence. ” Darkonda answered. “If he goes along with our orders then Earth is destroyed. And if he doesn’t, well we win there anyway. ” S’Hera and Darkonda then resumed their walk down the hallway. Just around the corner Sygnus overheard their conversation, and he had some ideas of his own.
Kinwon continued to walk down the corridor, his aide Tykwa following close behind. “Kinwon what are you planning?”
“You know what I’m planning. ” Kinwon said letting the sentence hang, but Tykwa immediately picked up on what Kinwon intended to do. “Do you know what will happen if you go to Earth without council clearance?”
“I have an idea, but I don’t care. I will not see another civilization destroyed like KO-35 was. Especially one where we may have a connection with. ” Tykwa looked at Kinwon curiously wondering what he meant by that. “It may just be possible that all humans in this section of the galaxy may have the same connection to history. And as such I cannot turn a blind eye and let fellow humans be destroyed and defeated like we were at KO-35. “
Tykwa seemed to sympathize with Kinwon but she needed him to be sure what he was doing was the right decision. As such she grabbed Kinwon, turned him around and stated “If you do this Darkonda will have you replaced. ” Kinwon nodded in knowing, but it didn’t matter to him. His mind was made up as he gave his next order.
“Prepare the Pegasus for battle. “
Tykwa nodded as she and Kinwon walked down the corridor together, ready to go to Earth.
The basestars seemed to be getting closer and closer to the planet. Panic spread throughout the world as the massive ships filled the skies. News programs all speaking of the terrible ships approaching as satellite photos saw the approaching baseships. Military bases all over the world went on high alert readying every weapon they could think of. Nuclear warheads, jet fighters, helicopters anything.
Even at the Power Chamber zords were being brought to a state of combat readiness. Since the Sky Zords were still off line standard Zords were brought to battle readiness. Morphin Zords, Zeo Zords, anything and everything was being called upon. Alpha made ready to contact Zeo Team I and the Outsiders in San Francisco but the sound of the alert kept him from making that call. As they turned to the viewing globe they saw the baseships hovering over Earth, then sections opened in each one as smaller vessels disembarked from the massive ships launching towards the planet.
“Zordon what are those?” Skull asked.
“Those are Cylon Raiders. ” Zordon said woefully. “They are swift, maneuverable, vessels that possess deadly firepower. Combined those ships can lay waste to every city on this planet. “
“Ai, yi, yi! Zordon these Cylon Raiders are moving out to hit every major metropolitan city. Moscow, London, Sydney, Washington D. C. , Dallas…” Alpha continued reading the list as it went on and on. No way could the Rangers cover all of them and still be able to defend Angel Grove.
“We have no choice Alpha. Make ready to deploy a Ranger at each target the Cylons hit. Maybe one can handle the approaching Cylon wave. ” Alpha and Billy made preparations for the Zeo and Outsider Zords to be called up from the Zord Landing bays then Alpha resumed his call to the Outsiders and Zeo Team I and told them to return immediately. Tommy acknowledged Zordon’s command and got the Rangers and Outsiders together. Kat went into Nash’s hospital room and got Cassidy.
When Kat saw their newest Ranger she was sitting by her father’s bedside as if praying that he would come out of the coma he was in. Kat almost felt like leaving her there so she could be with her parents, but Kat knew that Cassidy was needed. Crossing over to her Kat gently laid a hand on Cassidy’s shoulder. “Come on we need you. The Cylons are attacking again. “
Tears started to fall down Cassidy’s face as she saw her father lying almost dead. “Daddy. “
“I know you would rather be here with him. ” Kat said softly and tried to think of what else to say but couldn’t. How could one leave their parents’ side when they needed them most? Fortunately Kat didn’t have to say anything. “Daddy always did his duty. He always did what he could for the people of this city. I have all the missed birthdays, and broken promises to prove that. “
Cassidy seemed to pause unable to leave her father’s side, but then she stood up and looked at Kat, then at her father. “But my dad never stopped loving me. As I got older I realized that my dad had his duty. He tried to keep the people in this city safe from the scumbags in this city. Now I have my duty, and I know my father would understand if I’m not here. ” Looking at Kat Cassidy said “Let’s go. “
Kat smiled as she and Cassidy left Nash’s room. Cassidy stopped an orderly and said “If my father wakes up, tell him his little girl is going after the bad guys. ” The orderly nodded as he went about his rounds. Waiting at the end of the hall were the Zeo Rangers and Outsiders.
“You gonna be okay?” Tommy asked.
“I will be when I get my hands on who attacked my family. ” Cassidy said. And with that said everyone activated their communicators and teleported to the Power Chamber.
When they arrived the Rangers found that the Doctor was also able to transport his TARDIS to the chamber as well. Surprisingly enough it made the trip in one hop. The Doctor even said so.
“No detours to the Eye of Orion? I’m impressed. ” Samantha smirked. The Doctor rolled his eyes not appreciating Samantha’s sarcasm. Cassidy and Alison however were awestruck at the sight of the chamber, and for a moment Cassidy forgot her father for a minute.
“Hello. My name is Alpha 5. ” Alpha said introducing himself to Cassidy and Alison. Both girls seemed impressed by the sight of the little android and Cassidy shook Alpha’s hand. “Cassidy Bridges. ” Cassidy said in introduction.
“Alison Bogard. ” Alison said also shaking Alpha’s hand. Soon the rest of the Rangers gathered around her hoping to meet Green Astro and especially Silver Zeo face to face but the current crisis prevented that.
“Alison. Perhaps you should contact the other Astro Rangers. Dimetria will give them the teleport co-ordinates. ” Zordon said. Alison dod so, and soon the Astro Rangers had arrived as well.
“Rangers. I’m afraid we do not have much time for socialization. As you all know the Cylon Empire has sent three of their cruiser called basestars which are moving to attack every major…” An explosion then rocked the Power Chamber and Cassie asked “What was that?”
“Alpha recalibrate the scanning system. ” Zordon ordered. Alpha tried to recalibrate the viewing globe from world wide view to outside the chamber to see what was happening. But as Alpha was doing that the Rangers saw images from all around the world of people looking up at the skies as the Raiders moved towards their targets.
All over the planet people saw the Cylon Raiders approaching like birds of death. “‘They’re heading right for us. ‘ ‘This is the end. ‘ ‘It’s curtains. ‘ ‘The end of the world. ‘” So many speeches of doom all over the planet, so many languages to say them in, and they all became aware of the Cylon’s intent when they fired their first shots from their ships. One of the first targets was the Power Chamber.
An attack wing of three fighters started blasting at the super structure of the Power Chamber, but the shields were holding.
“Rangers prepare to teleport to your Zords. ” Zordon ordered. Alpha began the procedure to bring the Zords to the launch bay as the Rangers prepared to teleport to them unaware that the Cylons were preparing for that very maneuver.
From the lead Raider the Cylons watched the doors of the Power Chamber’s Zord bays open. “Zord bays are opening. ” A Centurion had said from his pilot’s seat.
“Then there is an opening in the shield. Begin the attack. ” The fighter commander ordered. “By Your Command. ” The pilot answered.
“Zords approaching launch bay. ” Alpha said. “Ready to teleport. “
“No wait. ” The Doctor said as he looked at the image on the viewing globe. “What are they doing?” The Doctor noticed a Cylon approaching the launch bay heading in at full speed and ordered Alpha to scan the ship. “Ai, yi, yi! Doctor the Raider is packed with Solonite!” Right away Zordon and the Doctor knew everyone was in trouble. Solonite was a highly explosive substance used for many munitions.
“He’s gonna ram!” Aisha shouted as the Raider flew straight into the Zord landing bay crash landing and exploding on impact. The explosion however was so powerful it sent flames and debris scattering all over the bay cutting off the Zords from the launch position.
In the chamber itself debris started to fall as the effects of the explosion shook the chamber, and sent sparks throughout certain systems overloading them causing short outs. David pushed Kat out of the way of a falling ceiling rafter sending both onto the floor. “Wow I didn’t know you cared. ” Kat said to David coyly.
Tommy did what he could to protect Lillian, even though she commented that she could take care of herself, and Jason looked out for Jamie. Basically every Ranger looked out for one another, especially Sabrina and Adam. “You okay?”
“Yeah, just never thought I’d be saved by Scorpina. ” Adam said. Just then Tanya came to Adam’s side and asked if he was okay. Adam said he was fine, and hugged her. He caught Sabrina’s gaze and said “Oh sorry. “
“That’s all right. ” Sabrina said realizing that she just may have lost her chance at the love of Adam. His heart belonged to another.
Every Ranger checked one another out. There were a few cuts and bruises but they were for the most part okay. “Fire in the bay!” Alpha shouted. Immediately fire suppression systems were activated, but the Doctor wasn’t sure they would be enough. Even with the fire out the Zords would still have to deal with the debris blocking the exit.
“We’ve got a problem. ” Christina said as she looked up from her scanner. “The shield is failing. “
“And that’s not the worst of it. ” Jamie said from another console. “Another Raider is setting up for another kamekazi run. “
“Alpha! Teleport the Rangers out immediately!” Zordon ordered. Alpha tried to activate the command, but the equipment would not respond. The teleporter was disabled. The Rangers were trapped in the Power Chamber.
The next thing that happened the Cylon Raider impacted the Power Chamber again. The Solonite made for a very loud bang.
Overhead the third Cylon sent images of the wrecked and burning Power Chamber back to Josie’s base star and smiled. She then ordered the Raider to return to base and the ship did so.
“Perfect. ” Josie said seated in the high seat of command as she looked at the devastation of the Power Chamber. “The Rangers are trapped in their own headquarters. And we shall not give them time to recover. “
Vulpa looked at the console readouts as he said that the Raiders had taken up their positions Josie’s then gave her next command. “Let the attack begin. ” The orders were followed to the letter. And if she had any remorse for her actions no one saw it.
Iblis had already taken care of it.
In Josie’s mind Iblis soothed her troubles away with his soft words and gentleness. He reassured her that everything would be all right. “The Rangers will be destroyed, your sister has been returned, what more could you want?”
“But these people. ” Josie thought. “Won’t they die?”
"Yes, but don't worry about them. I've explained it all to you. Just have your revenge. Nothing won't happen that isn't supposed to happen. " And like all the other times Josie was reassured by Iblis's soothing words.
All the while following the path to damnation.
Inside the burning Power Chamber the Rangers emerged from the safety of the TARDIS surveying the wreckage left by the two colliding ships. Alpha emerged as well and began a damage assessment after saying “Ai, yi, yi! The whole building is a wreck. “
“Wait. What about Zordon?” Andros asked.
“Zordon’s safe. ” The Doctor said. “He retreated into his pocket dimension and shut down the plasma tube so he wouldn’t be hurt. “
“Well there are a few fractures. ” Billy said analyzing the tube. “It will be a while before we can bring Zordon back. ” Chelsea also went below to check on Trey, when she came back up she said Trey’s tube was still functioning. “Too bad everything else is shot. “
“The Sky Zord launch bay is still intact. ” Aisha said. “But the equipment we need to finish them is damaged. “
Christina also looked at the communications console. “Communications are fried. We have no way of establishing contact with anyone right now. “
“What about the TARDIS communications circuit?” Samantha asked.
“To contact Dimetria?” the Doctor asked. “Perhaps. She can probably also send us some equipment to finish the Sky Zords as well. ” The Doctor raced into the console room followed by the Astro Rangers as he tried to contact the Astro Megaship. Unfortunately all that the Doctor got was static. “Communications are being disrupted. ” The Doctor then activated the Infinity window above the console hoping to find where the Astro Megaship would be in orbit around Earth, but it was nowhere to be seen.
“Where is it?” Andros asked. No one had an answer.
The Rangers were trapped in their headquarters unable to help until it could well be too late. Meanwhile the Cylons pressed on their planetary attack.
Trini walked down the streets of Angel Grove trying to comprehend all that was told to her.
How her life had all been a lie that her parents kept from her. How she possessed a dark power within her body. A power generated by purple flame that came from who knows where, except her own anger. How her Psycho Ranger replica seemed to have embraced that power and has become someone VERY scary, and wants her to embrace that power too.
“What do I do?” Trini asked herself. “Am I meant to be evil?”
Trini didn’t get an answer. Her attention was distracted by the appearances of ships in the sky. Ships that brought down blue waves of destruction on the citizens of Angel Grove.
And the world.
The Cylons had begun their attack.
The sky rained fire.
Cylon vessels came from the sky firing bursts of destructive blue light that destroyed everything in their path. Every major city was faced with Cylon Vessels appearing, launching wave after wave of destructive force.
In Los Angeles an entire squadron of Cylon Raiders swept throughout the city, destroying everything in sight. People scrambled for safety where none existed. The intent was to make the city a smoldering ruin,
In London the Cylons swept like locusts on their own path of destruction. Big Ben would chime no more as Cylon blaster fire reduced the clock to a burned out shell. London bridge actually fell with all the people on it trying to escape. The loss of history however was nothing compared to the loss of life.
In New York the Cylons resumed their spree of destruction, destroying the top halves of the World Trade Center, and the Empire State Building, sending chunks of skyscrapers to the ground below crushing those that the blaster fire did not get. The peace gardens were destroyed as well signifying in a symbolic sense that the Cylons had no desire for peace. Their only goals were destruction, and the extermination of humanity.
In the seaside city of Mariner Bay, the Cylons streaked overhead. City departments were quickly overrun. Fire departments were stretched to the limits trying to cover destroyed areas, only to find themselves destroyed. Captain William Mitchell tried to organize, as much of his fledging Lightspeed organization together, but due to budget cuts didn’t have as much resources as he could spare. He did have a brief moment of happiness as he saw his daughter Dana trying to care for as much of the wounded as she could. The Aquabase was becoming something of a shelter area, unfortunately so many were coming in. Ligtspeed couldn’t cover them all.
In Silver Hills, the Cylons hit everything they could find. But all Alan Collins of Biolab cared about were two things: his company and his son. They had just escaped from a factory inspection when the Cylons attacked. The factory went up like a roman candle, Mr. Collins’s investment was up in smoke, but he was relieved his son Wes was safe. He tried to find safe haven for him anywhere he could in the city, but the Collins’s were like anyone else now. They were just trying to stay alive.
In Turtle Cove Cylons attacked everywhere, even the zoo where the animals were trying to hide from the bombs. The zookeepers however, two of them especially, were too busy trying to save their own neck as they ran away leaving the animals to fend for themselves. In their pens the poor animals were little more than cannon fodder.
In Blue Bay Harbor, a young teen named Kelly Holloway was trying to organize her father’s shop into something of a shelter for those running from the Cylon Blasters. The shop quickly filled up leaving no more room for anyone else. Even in the mountains where secret Ninja academies were said to exist offered no protection. Bombs blew away many of the ninja protectors. The sensei of the Wind Ninja Acedemy was barely able to get his son Cam underground before the bombs hit.
In Crossworld City, the Cylons struck. The VR Troopers rallied to stop as much of the Cylons as they could, but the Skybase was heavily damaged and had to set down for repairs. Grimlord mounted his own defense trying to protect his own interests, but the attack was still having a terrible effect on the reality barrier.
In Leawood, Masked Rider tried to do what he could for the people, but since Masked Rider had no air vehicle he was limited to ground based attacks, which didn’t have much effect against the Raiders. Count Dregon tried to fight back, but the Spider base was overmatched as a group of three Raiders targeted his ship and knocked out his ship’s defenses bit by bit. Soon the Spider base was disabled as the Raiders destroyed his engines, and the Count was defeated. His Spider base was falling to Earth, and it was all Doubleface could do to find a soft place for the Spider base to land.
In Charterville, the Beetleborgs and monsters fought against the Cylons. But the Cylons’ ruthlessness was evident in the pounding the Bettleborgs’ AV’s were taking. The Magnavores and Crustaceans didn’t have much luck either as Trilons and Centurions appeared. The Magnavores were unable to make a dent in the Centurion armor, and the Crustaceans could not match the Trilon’s maneuverability. Both enemies of the Beetleborgs were soundly defeated.
In North Valley, the computers were down, and the Cybertrons and Destrons mounted a defense, but again it fell. Casualties were high. Damage to the small town was extensive, as was the loss of life there. Kilokhan could however repair Digitropolis, it would just take a while.
All around the planet the story was the same. Buildings exploded. Monuments toppled. The Eiffel Tower in Paris was a smoldering steel rod as the top toppled down. Chunks of the Great Wall of China were shattered. Monuments in Washington D. C. were destroyed. And through it all the people ran for safety trying to hide from the destructive waves that came down from the sky. Many of them not succeeding as bodies littered the streets of every city and country on the planet.
Even in nations where terrorists were given safe haven were not spared. For this day races, religion, politics, ethnicity, or nationalities did not matter. None of the differences mattered. Whether they were American, Britain, French, Spanish, Japanese, Korean, Afgani, Iranian, Iraqi, Saudi Arabian, none of that mattered this day. To the Cylons they were all humans. Human beings faced with the threat of destruction as the Cylon Empire descended from above. Waves of destruction spread across the planet as the Raiders pressed their attack.
Their standing orders on humans-exterminate them.
In the shelters, all across the planet, people began to say their goodbyes to friends and family. People were confessing their darkest secrets to one another. Some people even gave their girlfriends, boyfriends, or strangers kisses goodbye, as they wanted their last moments on Earth to be happy ones. They knew the end was coming, and some even prayed for a benign miracle to come and save them.
Then the skies started to storm, everyone looked up to hear a voice calling out to the Cylons attacking. “Cylons! These people are under my protection. I order you to return from whence you came, or you shall feel my wrath!”
Then suddenly the attack stopped and the Raiders all disappeared faster than they appeared. Whether they turned back or just vanished the people didn’t care. The sky was empty, the threat was gone. People had come out of their makeshift shelters and looked up to see the skies clear again. The death from above was gone. Clear blue skies appeared again. An aura of joy, relief and euphoria ran among the survivors as they were glad that they were able to live again.
“We’re saved!” came from some of the crowd. “It’s a miracle!” said others. Similar comments were said from others.
Immediately people started to dance in the streets in celebration of their second lease on life when they looked up and saw the image of a man appear. A man with a kindly face and white robes passing himself off like a benign savior. But those who knew of him, knew better.
"Greetings. " Iblis said. His images spreading all over the planet like an angel of benevolence. Others however knew how malevolent Iblis could be, but those that knew could not speak out.
"I'm sure you all have seen the destructive force come from the skies intent on death and destruction. Many of you have lost those close to you already. But I can save you. All you have to do is place yourself under my guidance. I shall protect you from all who threaten you. " Iblis smile seemed so gentle, soothing.
“Oh my. ” Some had said.
“Is he the one that saved us?” another asked.
Others even asked, “Is he God?”
All around the world people looked up at the image of what they perceived to be a divine manifestation. They really thought Iblis was a savior, and many were ready to give themselves to him. Others weren’t so sure, but if this being could save them wasn’t it worth paying homage to he who could show them salvation?
Some didn’t think so.
And some of them were the Power Rangers.
Another of them was on the Dark Fortress, and she looked on at the image of Iblis making his grand address to Earth. Since becoming Artemis Karone had become aware of the many evils in the cosmos, and this being she could tell was at the top of the list. Next to Artemis sat Astronema who also looked at Iblis.
“Nice entrance. ” Astronema said. “Destroying an attack force like that and then coming off as some sort of savior. Dark Specter never did that. “
“We are following a dangerous path. ” Artemis said as she looked at the images before her. “This attack was staged. “
“Staged?” Astronema said in shock. “How?”
“I don’t know. But maybe it’s time I found out. ” Artemis then pulled out a data disk and Astronema was curious as to what it was. “What is that?” she asked.
“All Kerovans learned this as a child. It was taken from a ship that arrived years before. ” She inserted the disk into the disk drive and both Artemis and Astronema sat back as the imager activated. It was now time for Astronema to learn what Kerovans knew about the Cylons.
Meanwhile, all across Earth the news spread about Iblis’s arrival, and how he had driven back the Cylons. News services, those that were still operational, reported the story anyway they could about a seemingly benign being who offered protection as long as they followed his leadership.
Some were very pleased with the prospect. Others weren’t so sure.
At the moment, in Washington DC, an emergency meeting of the House and the Senate and the President was now taking place though the room did seem a bit more empty than usual. At least 23 Senators and 41 Representatives were missing or confirmed to have been killed in the Cylon attack upon the world.
And now there was this so called being who promised the world salvation if they put themselves into his hands.
William Jefferson Clinton never more felt the burden of being the President of the United States of America the most on this day than any other day. Which is why he had to have this meeting. For something of this magnitude, he needed to hear from the representatives of all fifty states of the country and see how they felt about this. He then took the podium and addressed those assembled.
“We have come to an empass in human history. We are faced with the possibility of annihilation. It is very real and very possible. On one hand we know the face of the enemy that threatens to destroy us all and on the other, is this strange being that seems to have the power to stop them. But to do so we must give ourselves up to this being and allow ourselves to be cared by him, ” The President stated. “My question to you all, my fellow human beings, is how do you feel about this? What would you do?”
There were many voices speaking out in the House. Many were saying that the people are scared and wanted to be protected by any means necessary. Some thought the being that appeared to them was indeed benign, and wanted to protect them. But there was one voice that rung out among all the others. One with a sense of power and presence.
“Mr. President, if I may speak?”
President Clinton looked over to the voice that spoke and recognized the man, as he was part of the Democratic Party himself and had seen the potential of this man, “Senator David Palmer of Maryland. What do you believe of this being that promises salvation?”
Palmer took a moment before taking the podium and addressing the gathered assembly, “My fellow Americans, to my own belief, my own opinion, I cannot put my faith in this being that has come before us, who is promising salvation. For lack of a better term, it just seems too easy. “
People wondered what he meant by that but they didn’t have to wait long, “Through out human history, nothing, and I mean nothing has ever come easy. Nothing has ever come without a price. It took us hundreds of years to find ways to travel around the world in a way that it wouldn’t take weeks or months but in fact just hours. It took many years for us to be able to find a way to send a man to the moon. And it took more than just a few days to fight in a war. . . in any war. “
“And that’s just what we are in now. A war. We are at war with an enemy that wants to annihilate our entire species from existence. An enemy that is comparable to Adolf Hilter and his Nazis who through out the Second World War didn’t stop killing off people that were not a part of the ‘master race’. Not even the threat of defeat, not even knowing the fact they would be defeated as they were boxed in by all of the Allied forces stopped them from their executions. “
“And yet here has come this great being who seems to get rid of these metal demons with just of a flick of his hand. ” Palmer told them all with focused eyes, “Now that. . . that is just too easy. Too suspicious if you ask me. Of all the times that we have had problems in this world, from all of the other threats that have come at us, our own and past alien assaults, why does he choose now to come when there have been times before that this planet has been on the brink of extermination?”
“But you know what really bothers me about this being?” Palmer asked them all, “What bothers me, is that he is telling us that in order for us to be saved we have to place ourselves under his guidance. That we have to do that in order to be saved. For those of us that believe in God, the Bible tells us that in order to be saved we have to believe in God but God does not work in the ways that this being has. For those of us that don’t, let me speak of an old proverb, ‘Be aware of false gods and prophets. ‘ I believe that this being, whom ever he is, is anything but just and if we had over to him our free will, our freedom of choice, we will be no better off than being exterminated by these aliens. The only difference is, that our children will have to suffer for our mistake. “
Palmer then took his seat and every one of the surviving members of the U. S. Senate and the House of Representatives were considering Palmer’s words. Finally the Republican senator of Ohio, George Voinovich, stood and said “I agree with Senator Palmer. For the time being, I say we wait until we know more. “
“But do we have the time to wait?” another senator asked. “The silver monsters may return still. “
“I doubt that. ” Palmer said. “This being wants our answer first. Until he gets it we still have some time to figure out his motives. “
President Clinton seemed to consider Palmer’s words just as a secret service agent came in to escort him to Air Force One in order to be flown to a secure location. “It seems I must take my leave of all of you. My secret service forces are asking me to be flown to a safe location. But before I leave I want to address one last point.
“I agree with Senators Palmer and Voinovich in that we are not so sure about this being. We need to know before we find ourselves making a mistake we will undoubtedly regret. To that end one representative will be chosen to go to the United Nations, and represent the American people as he confronts this being. “
“Who will you choose?” a senator from Nevada asked. Clinton paused for a moment and then answered “Senator Palmer. His case is the strongest, and that’s the one we need to argue. “
“Thank you Mr. President. ” Palmer said. “When do I leave?”
“Immediately. A plane will be prepared for you. ” With that Clinton left, adjourning the meeting of the House and Senate. As the members left Senator Voinovich came up to Palmer offing him his best wishes. “Take care David. I don’t envy you. “
“No problem George. Thanks for going to bat for me. ” Palmer and Voinovich were allies at times. Palmer had been the idealist, while Voinovich did what was politically sound. However Voinovich knew many times when Palmer was onto something, and Palmer’s statements had been a major influence on Voinovich’s decisions.
“Let’s just hope there is a world left standing. ” Voinovich said as he walked out of the senate leaving Palmer alone thinking about what he would say to the being at the U. N. Whatever it would be, it would come from the heart.
At the ruins of the Power Chamber the Rangers and Outsiders quickly began clean up and repair operations. Sadly there was a lot to clean up and repair, and progress was slow but sure.
Throughout the Power Chamber everyone was wondering what was happening planet wide. The Doctor was using his scanning equipment to catch images across the planet, but the images were of destruction and devastation. Images he had seen once before and filled him with sadness even then. He almost didn’t catch the disappearance of the Cylon Raiders across the planet, but when he did he was just as surprised as everyone else on the planet. He also had a good idea about who was behind it.
“Viewing globe is operational. ” Alpha had said. “I’m receiving a signal. Planet wide. “
“Put it up Alpha. ” Jason ordered. And just when the image went up Iblis’s image appeared on the globe making his proposal across the planet. Swear loyalty to him and he will guarantee safety for Earth. Most of the Rangers were swayed, but not all.
“I’ve seen him before. ” Cassidy said. “He was in the base with Josie. “
Andros turned and looked at Cassidy. “You saw Iblis?”
“Yeah. And he was no benign saint when I saw him. In fact he was encouraging Josie to take me and Zhane to have our powers drained. ” Cassidy explained. She stared at the image of Iblis and felt something stir within her, a feeling of some sort, as if something told her that Iblis was indeed powerful and dangerous beyond anything she could imagine. Cassidy shook the thought out of the state not knowing where it came from and turned to Andros as she asked “How do you know him?”
“He tried to tempt Andros with the offer of power and revenge. I helped him refuse. ” Sabrina stated.
“I think I’ve seen him before as well. ” Tommy said. “He called himself the Dark One. “
The Doctor then explained. “That’s not the Dark One you may know, but he is a close second. “
“How do you mean?” Aisha asked. The Doctor then explained.
“Millennia ago humanity began on the planet Kobol. Life evolved there and flourished. The Kobollians way of life was one of self improvement and guidance in hopes to ascend humanity to the next level of evolution. The Kobollians were gifted scholars, renowned architects, scientists, artists, and possessed mental powers beyond any of their ken. The leaders of Kobol were known as the Lords of Kobol. They helped guide their fellow brethren to a state where they could ascend their natural states and evolve into creatures of ultimate power. But before they could do this disaster struck. “
“What disaster?” Bulk asked.
“Kobol’s sun was dying. ” The Doctor said. “The Kobollians had to leave their home planet and travel to distant star systems in hopes of settling new worlds in order to continue to flourish. Thirteen tribes had left Kobol. Twelve left to settle worlds in a nearby sector while the thirteenth left to settle a world in a distant galaxy in a far distant sector. The thirteenth tribe’s journey was far more perilous and some members of the tribe were either lost or settled worlds en route to their destination. “
“This all sounds well and good but how does Iblis fit into all this?” Jamie asked.
“Sorry I’m digressing. ” The Doctor said as he continued to explain.
“One of their own, a student of the sciences, followed ways that did not follow with the Lord’s doctrines. In fact he downright revolted against the Lords who ruled believing that humanity and other races needed to be subjugated in order to teach them. That one Lord was none other than Count Iblis. ” The Rangers were shocked as the Doctor continued the story.
“Iblis gathered an army of followers to depose the Lords and to impose his own ideals on his fellow Kobollians. This revolt was defeated and Iblis and his followers were exiled from Kobol and sent to one of the most uninhabitable worlds in the known universe-the planet Cylon. One of the most uninhabitable planets in the known universe which was home to a group of reptiles. “
“All right now how is this Iblis connected with the Cylons?” T. J. then asked, but before the Doctor could answer Cassidy’s cell phone then rang.
“Hello Cassidy. How’s your daddy!” Josie sneered on the other end of Cassidy’s cell phone. Cassidy tried to maintain her composure as she recognized the voice. “What do you want Josie? Are you here to ask me to give up the powers? Or are you just here to gloat?”
The only answer Cassidy got was a small chuckle of laughter on the part of Josie “Figure it out for yourself. You can do that can you?” Josie said as she disconnected the transmission leaving Cassidy all alone. In a fit of rage Cassidy threw it at the wall of the Power Chamber. Everyone wondered what was wrong and Cassidy answered.
“That was Josie. Rubbing salt on wounds. ” Cassidy explained making reference to the attack on her parents, and the murder of Kelly and Evan.
Josie cut off the communications link and thought about what she had just done. Sure she had baited her enemy with that message, and got her riled up, but she also wondered if what Iblis said about her was true. That there was more to Cassidy Bridges than even she knew.
“Oh well I’ll find out for myself, after I defeat her. ” Josie smiled.
Inside his private sanctuary on board the Pegasus Kinwon was also learning the Doctor’s story only through a different source. On his holo imager in something of a sanctuary on board his ship the image of the battlestar’s former commander, Commander Cain, appeared before him.
“Greetings. ” Cain said. “If you are playing these tapes that means the Cylons have appeared. If that is the case then you need to know of their beginnings. To that end I made arrangements with Commander Adama from the Battlestar Galactica to transfer copies of all historical information he had on the Cylons over to me so you would not be unprepared. ” The image of Cain then faded and one of a middle aged man with snow white hair, wearing a blue uniform with a medallion on his collar appeared. His face had shown a wisdom and tenderness that seemed to rival that of Zordon. Kinwon then sat back as the man known as Adama told of the beginnings of the Cylons.
“When Iblis and his followers arrived he immediately began work on giving the Cylons what they wanted, to become the most feared conquerors in the known universe. To this end Iblis took human DNA from himself and his followers and infused the Cylon genetic makeup with it altering their structure. He also perfected a cloning process that made Cylon females obsolete. He then went onto his greatest master plan to where he began a cybernetics process that would turn the Cylon race into a race of cold blooded machines intent on destroying everything in their paths, especially humans if they came across them.
“This was because of Iblis’s bitterness at his exile. He wanted revenge against his fellow Kobollians for exiling him. To that end the Cylon’s mission was one of complete destruction and subjugation of whatever they had come across. The Cylons became the enemies of all life. And sure enough the Cylons came across humanity when the colonies met up with them.
“The Cylons moved against neighboring planets that the Cylons wished to enslave, also when the Hasaris had their nation taken by force by the Cylons the colonies interceded when the Hasaris asked for our aide. This was during the beginning of the sixth millennium of time and when the Cylons began their war with us. They attacked without warning, we were barely able to drive them back, and this began the war that would last all the way to the beginning of the seventh millennium of time.
“The warriors who fought were caught in a life and death struggle for survival. ” The image of Commander Adama said. “Hope during this war was always diminishing, and after the end it was non existent. “
Kinwon didn’t need to know what Adama meant as the images of Caprica and the other eleven Colonies of man were destroyed by a Cylon force. The imagery reminded Kinwon of when KO-35 was destroyed.
The images even spread all the way to the Dark Fortress where Astronema and Artemis were watching. Astronema looked on at the devastation in shock. Never had she seen such destruction before, not even by her own hand. Artemis let a tear fall down her cheek as the part of her that was Karone wept for the fallen civilization.
Ecliptor walked up behind the two princesses and was appalled. “How could something like this have happened?” Then as if right on cue Adama answered Ecliptor’s question.
“How did this destruction happen? Well towards the end of the war the Cylons made an overture of peace to the colonies. They negotiated with a council member named Baltar for a peace settlement that was nothing more than a lie. Baltar made a deal with the Cylons to lure the fleet away from the Colonies to where they would be ambushed near the old moon Cimtar. A fleet of one thousand Cylon Raiders attacked the fleet with only one battlestar escaping-the Galactica .
Cain’s image then appeared again as if adding an addendum. “In case you were wondering the Pegasus was not part of the battle with the colonies. We were way out near Gamoray where the Cylons were attacking that civilization that also faced Cylon annihilation. In fact the Pegasus rendezvoused with the Galactica but I’ll get to that later. ” Adama’s image then appeared on the holo viewer once again.
“I ordered all survivors to escape in whatever vehicle that would carry them to rendezvous with my ship, the Galactica . Out of all the colonies only two hundred and twenty ships escaped with the Cylons pursuing them at every turn in their own life and death struggle for survival. “
“We need heroes. ” The image of Adama said. “For it is heroes the inspire us to be the best we can be, and who can show us the light when things are at their darkest. ” The image then faded out and Astronema, Artemis and Karone were left to ponder Adama’s words.
“That Count Baltar reminds me of someone I know, a lecherous snake who would sell out his own mother for gold. ” Ecliptor said. “What happened to the Pegasus ?”
Artemis then explained this. “At the battle of Gamoray Cain sought to confront Baltar who had three base ships at his command. Like the coward he was he let the other two take the attack from Cain while he slithered away with his tail between his legs. After the base ships were destroyed Cain took off for deep space and somehow ended up on a collision course for Eltar. The ship stopped just before hitting the planet, but the course back could not be accurately calculated. It’s believed that they traveled through several space time warps to get here. “
“And what about the ship’s commander? This Cain?” Astronema asked. Again Artemis answered.
“He and his crew were found dead on arrival and given a proper military burial. School children were given the story of the Pegasus to learn as part of intergalactic history, and I always found Adama’s words to be reassuring. Especially the heroes angle. “
“What happened to Adama?” Ecliptor then asked. Artemis answered, “No one knows. It’s believed that he could be dead by now. Astronomers have been watching for signs of this Galactica and her fleet, but nothing has been spotted. “
Astronema considered Adama’s words but one thing still troubled her. “Only one problem. ” Astronema said. “We’re not heroes. “
“She’s right. ” Ecliptor said. “This is not the UAE’s concern right now. If the Cylons are driven away we can move in or if they ask us for help. But until then this is not our affair. ” Astronema and Ecliptor then made ready to embark on another training session and Artemis said she’d catch up. “I want to watch what’s happening on Earth right now. “
Ecliptor and Astronema left Artemis alone as Artemis removed her wig from her head revealing the blonde hair that was Karone. In Karone’s mind the part of her that was a Ranger went out to those facing Iblis and the Cylons on Earth, and on some level she wanted to do something about it.
Karone looked at the screen before her. She had to help. But how?
The plight of Earth did not go unnoticed. On Triforia the provisional government heard about what was happening as well, and Prime Minister Tirol addressed the royal court ready to deliver his ruling.
“Not long ago Triforia faced a great crisis at the hands of the traitor Terr, a crisis that nearly doomed us all, and almost tarnished whatever honor that Triforia had. Now our chance to regain our honor has come. Earth is facing the grip of the most evil and corrupt being in the cosmos, and the council will do nothing to save them. ” Tirol heard from Sygnus that Darkonda and S’Hera were maneuvering the council into position to refuse Earth’s help. Tirol wondered if there was anything that could be done but Sygnus said that right now they were in a position that no matter what was done they would win.
Tirol decided to listen to what his conscience would dictate. “So therefore, if the council won’t do something, WE WILL!!!” Cheers erupted from the crowd as Tirol continued his speech. “The time has come for us to regain our lost honor. Will you stand together?!” A resounding yes came from the royal court and those assembled. “THEN LET’S DO IT!!!” Soon the whole court erupted into a cheer.
“Ready a fleet. We’re going to aid Earth. ” Tirol said. Everyone on the Triforian court roared their approval. Soon everyone made preparations to leave for Earth including the members of his court. Tirol then noticed the approach of another one of his court. “Ah Tyran. What is it?”
Tyran paused before he spoke. “Ah…Prime Minister Tirol. I have to ask when will Prince Trey return?”
Tirol sighed. It seemed like this question would be constantly asked, even those that asked it were becoming less and less frequent. “I don’t know. ” Tirol answered. “Why do you ask?”
“Well it’s apparent that Trey will be…indisposed for quite some time, even if we manage to help save the planet he considers an adoptive home. And since Trey’s absence you’ve been running things quite well…”
“What is your point Tyran?” Tirol asked. Tyran paused before answering then answered straight out.
“If Trey ever returns you will have to step down as ruler of Triforia. Having to retire with your work half-done. All the good you’ve done a miniscule compared to that previous royals have done. But if you became a royal yourself, since there is no living heir available to claim the throne.
“In case it’s escaped your notice there is still one member of the royal family still out there. ” Tirol said. “And she may still be found. “
“You mean that deserter Tritania?” Tyran said. “She has no place here. She proved that by shirking her royal duty. “
“Tritania had her reasons. ” Tirol explained.
“Oh yes. She ‘didn’t want to be a typical royal. Didn’t feel as if the role applied to her. Didn’t want to be molded’. Was that the explanation? I suppose that was good enough reason for her to run out before marrying you. ” Before Tirol could react Tyran turned and walked away.
Tirol watched Tyran leave, his proposal still running through his mind. What was Tyran trying to do? Goad him for some odd reason? Encourage him to take the throne? Tirol looked at the empty chair where Trey’s father, and Trey himself was supposed to sit in. Tirol sat in it himself during his duties as Prime Minister, but through it all Tirol felt uncomfortable sitting in the royal throne. He knew he was only a temporary leader and that he would abdicate when Trey returned-someday.
But even if Tirol was never comfortable sitting in the royal throne, the power that came with it was his for now. All of Triforia answered to his command. Would he be able to let go of that power when the time came? Or would he try to keep it for himself like Terr tried to do?
It was then that Tirol remembered something Trey someone said to him. “Power is the ultimate liquor. Once you have a taste for it weaker people try to get more of it. It can turn saints into savages, and wise men into idiots. ” Trey smiled as he thought of the person who said those words. The woman whose portrait he was looking at right now.
The portrait of the Princess Tritania.
Tirol looked at a portrait of Tritania which had shown a radiant young woman in a golden dress reminiscent of something a fairy tale princess would wear at a ball. A tiara adorned her head keeping her golden brown hair in place, jewelry adorned her neck and radiance seeming to emanate from her like only a royal would.
Tirol looked at the portrait of the Princess Tritania. A portrait of the woman he was supposed to marry. Then he turned and walked down the hall to where his ship was waiting. “Tir, are the new fighters prepared?”
“Yes sir. ” Tir had said as Tirol made his way to the landing bay of his flagship to see the new fighter ship. Ever since the IGPF received exclusive rights to the Viper craft, and also due to the loss of much of Triforia’s defense Tirol thought it would be a good idea to build a new fighter craft to supplement the Triforian fleet.
The new ship was called a Star Fighter. It had two high powered engines in it’s rear with its wings touching the ground. A central landing strut stabilized the ship as the ground wings contributed to the landing mode. Two other smaller wings, one on each side aided the ship aerodynamically, enabling it to perform maneuverings very few ships could accomplish.
The front of the ship like the tip of a pyramid was cut off and replaced by two cones running parallel to each other. These cones were the ship’s weapons, and could let out serious volleys of fire power.
“How many of these do our ships have?” Tirol asked about the Star Fighters.
“Twenty to each ship. Thirty on the flagship though. ” Tir had said. “They have functioned well in simulation, but this will be the ship’s first battlefield test. “
“Let’s hope they pull through. ” Tirol said leaving the Star fighter behind, as more of the ship were being loaded on board for the battle at Earth.
At the Power Chamber they too finished listening to the Doctor whose tale was reminiscent of Adama’s story exactly. Alison also walked over to Cassidy asking if she was all right. “I will be when I get my hands on Josie. ” Cassidy said thinking about the call from Josie.
“Don’t kid a kidder. ” Alison answered. “I’ve known you too long. “
Cassidy finally couldn’t hold it back as she slowly walked out of the room with Alison and Rocky following. When she was out of sight of the other Rangers Cassidy finally broke down and let the tears fall. Alison stood by her friend and tried to place a hand on her shoulder, but Cassidy brushed it away.
“It’s not fair. ” Cassidy said between sobs. “Kelly and Evan didn’t have to die. Mom and dad didn’t have to be hurt. ” Alison and Rocky were silent not knowing what else to say, so they let Cassidy do all the talking. “We have all this power. You with your ‘ki’ stuff, me with this crystal, everyone else with their powers. But none of us can do what we truly want, to keep our loved ones alive and bring them back once they were taken from us. “
“No. ” Rocky said as the truth seemed to hit him. “It’s not is it?”
“My stepmom is dead. Evan’s dead. My father and mother are almost dead. So many others are dead or dying. And we can’t even save them. I’d give anything for the chance to see my stepmom again…alive. Even if it’s only to say goodbye. ” Cassidy said but Alison held her gaze straight as she looked in her friend’s eyes. “That is a very dangerous wish. ” She said straight out. “And one that probably should not be made. ” Added Rocky. Cassidy looked on wondering what her friends meant by that when Rocky explained.
“The Rangers and I took off on a mission to fight an Interdimensional empire bent on destruction. Some of those who fought with us were resurrected versions of us, and I found out how they were brought back. Because other Rangers offered to sacrifice themselves to make sure they lived again. “
“You mean…for those Rangers to live…others had to die?” Alison asked.
“Thankfully no. But that was a one-shot deal. ” Rocky answered. “There are people I would love to have back. Jessie in particular. But the price for having her back…is just too high to pay. “
“So the people we love have to die?” Cassidy asked. “If we die what’s the point in fighting to stay alive?”
“Because where there’s life there’s hope. ” Tommy said while standing in the doorway. “There were so many times that I wanted to give up, to end it all. I wanted to stop the fight. I wanted to walk away. I wanted to give up. But I couldn’t, because while I was still alive, that meant that I could give hope out to those who needed it. Whether as a Ranger or as just plain old Tommy. And right now our world needs us. There are other fathers and mothers who need us to give our all so they can be with their daughters and sons again, so that what happened to you doesn’t happen to them. ” Tommy then offered his hand to Cassidy and Cassidy took it leading her back into the main chamber. Alison then made sure Cassidy wiped her tears away before the Rangers could see.
“Thanks Alison. You too Rocky. ” Cassidy said as both Alison and Rocky nodded. “No problem. ” Rocky added lending his strength and support to the new Silver Zeo Ranger. Just then the Morphin Rangers and Zeo Team II had walked up to her, to introduce themselves.
“I know this probably isn’t the best time but I figure that if we don’t say hello now we might never get the chance. I’m Jason Lee-Scott. ” Jason said offering his hand. “Welcome aboard. “
“Thanks. ” Cassidy said as she shook Jason’s hand. Kimberly was next and offered her hand. “Kimberly Hart. “
“Pleased to meet you. ” Cassidy said. Zack was next. “Zack Taylor” he said in introduction. And Cassidy shook his hand.
A teleport streak entered the chamber and Trini wondered what was going on. “Cylon attack. We’re also getting to know the new Silver Zeo. ” Jason said. Trini nodded and went over to Cassidy. “Trini Kwan. Sorry I’m not a little more civil, but I have a lot on my mind. “
“I can relate. ” Cassidy said as she met the next Ranger. “Eugene Skullovitch. “
“Pleasure. ” Cassidy said.
“Emily St. John. “
“Farkas Bulkmeyer. “
“Richie Evans. “
“Nathan Oliver. “
“Chelsea Oliver. “
“And that should be everyone. ” Kat said. “The rest you’ve already met. Except for Billy, and he should be coming up soon. ” Just then Billy’s voice filled the center. “The Sky Zord bay is clear. ” Billy said. “All I have to do is get the Zords finished. “
“Do it. ” Jason ordered. “Take as many as you need. ” Billy then took his original repair crew and Trini who had just arrived to the Sky Zord bay. Just then the Astro Megaship appeared on scanners and Dimetria signaled that they were ready to transport anyone who could help.
The other Rangers left for the Astro Megaship hoping to use that to co-ordinate their attack operations.
On board the Astro Megaship Andros was watching Iblis’s message, and he too wasn’t swayed for a minute. Off to the side Cassie was on scanners trying to find the Cylons in space. Unfortunately she did. “They’re hiding behind the moon. Three motherships. ” She said.
“They’re called base stars. ” Andros said in correction as he thought about the scenario. “They’re holding back waiting for humanity to make its choice. We don’t have much time. “
“What’t Iblis up to?” Carlos asked. Andros explained. “The Cylons attacked San Francisco the first time in order to establish their presence. Their massacre did just that, and it made an impact. So much so that when the Cylons attacked again everyone felt the impact all across the planet. “
“And then Iblis appears to get rid of the Cylons. ” T. J. answered. “Only the Cylons are not far away. In fact they will be ready to strike again if the people of Earth don’t follow Iblis. “
“Exactly. ” Andros said. “Iblis’s hoping the euphoria of being saved from the Cylons will sway the others. But even if there are those not convinced Iblis has a back up plan. “
“The Cylons around the moon. ” Cassie said. “If the euphoria doesn’t get them then the threat of another attack will. “
“But what’s the point of all this?” Carlos asked. A voice answered from behind. “Revenge. ” Everyone turned and saw Tommy, Jason, Tyler and their respective teams not far behind. Jason stepped forward and stood by Cassie. “I heard you said that there were Cylons on the other side of the moon. Looks like you were right. “
“Why is Iblis doing it this way?” Zack asked. “Why is he giving people a choice?”
“The people have to give to him willingly. ” Dimetria answered. “He cannot force his beliefs down on them. It would be a violation of one of the laws he’s bound by. To not interfere in the development of free will. ” Tommy then considered the words. “So we’ve got to do a two pronged attack. “One we’ve got to expose Iblis so the people of Earth don’t follow him, and two we have to knock out those three Cylon base ships ready to strike so people don’t react in fear. “
“Easier said than done. ” Andros said. “From what I’ve read about them those ships are orbiting killers. “
“Well considering what’s at stake now I think its time to unveil my special project. ” Sabrina said to her teammates.
“What project?” Carlos asked.
“Well personally I though that just having two zords in our entire arsenal was not a good thing at all. So I asked Dimitria to help set me up with what I needed and Zordon was able to help out a bit in this too, but without anyone knowing though. ” Sabrina said.
“Sabrina. What are you getting at?” Andros asked.
“Guys. . . its time to meet your new zords. ” Sabrina said to her teammates. After pressing a couple of keys on a computer terminal the viewer had shown six drydock spaces in orbit above Earth just outside the range of Earth’s satellites. Each one carrying a zord of some kind.
“Cassie your zord is the Astro Valkyrie. ” Sabrina said of the zord that looked very much like a Veritech Fighter from Robotech. The jet looked white with reddish pink trim with medical crosses on the left and right sides. On top of the plane was a passenger compartment, as well as holding areas at the bottom. Clearly it was a massive zord.
“And that’s not all it can do. ” Sabrina then keyed in the keys to launch the ship from drydock and then it transformed into something of a more humanoid, and feminine, shape. In warrior mode Cassie’s zord had slender red legs which had knee high white boots with red trim. Its lower torso was a white metal covering but the upper torso was feminine with a red metal top. Its arms were also slender and had white metal arm gauntlets with black metal hands. The zord also had large red shoulder guards, which stood straight up and had the medical cross on them. The zord’s head was a feminine face which was a beautiful silver with yellow eyes, a small red nose, red lips and shoulder length pink. “Is she some kind of warrior nurse or something?” Cassie asked.
“Or something. ” Sabrina answered as she went on to Carlos’s zord. Unlike Cassie’s which was in fighter mode Carlos’s was in robot mode yet had a poncho covering much of the build of the zord. “What’s with the poncho?” Carlos asked.
“Sorry. The designer was watching Clint Eastwood movies when he built it. The poncho came from all the westerns Clint had done. ” Sabrina said meekly. “Of course the fighter mode is also from another movie. ” Again Sabrina input a series of commands, and again the plane transformed into a ship. It had a long nose with its wings and engines at the end. The poncho fluttered around as if giving the plane a manner of protection against dust and radiation. “The fighter plane mode actually came from the Clint Eastwood movie Firefox, where Clint was a pilot who stole the most advanced Soviet plane ever built. “
“Somehow you don’t seem the type to be watching old movies. ” Zack said.
“I’m not, but Squatt, Baboo and Rita watched a film or two in hopes of analyzing Earth’s culture better. They…haven’t finished their research yet. ” Sabrina explained. Everyone else smirked as they thought of Rita watching movies. But Sabrina kept to business as she introduced the next zord, which was Alison’s.
It was a black plane with green trim. Its nose looked like it had a gun on it with its wings spread out. Again Sabrina initiated the transformation controls and the zord transformed into a machine that reminded Alison of a Gundam, and a pretty deadly one at that. “Say hello to the Stellar Assassin. ” Sabrina said. Alison however stood mesmerized by the sight, but Cassidy looked at the zord and said “Definitely you. “
Andros’s zord looked a hip built for speed as well as firepower. It had a long nose at the front with a cockpit in the middle. At the rear of the cockpit sat three engines. Two for turbo power and the third up top for maneuverability. The ship also had three wings. One was on top and one was on each side of the ship. On each wing was a blaster as well as two others on the side of the cockpit which could allow Andros to fire five bursts of energy at a specified target. When the transformation controls were initiated the zord seemed to look like a knight with a lance. Andros was clearly impressed.
T. J. ‘s zord looked like a long nosed ship with rockets at the end and two blasters on its wings. When it transformed it looked like a smaller version of Andros’s zord except with an ax as his weapon. When they came to Ashley’s zord Sabrina gave a small description of it. “I know it looks weird for a bladed ship in space, but those are primarily used for hover modes, and the blades can disengage and ignite two additional turbines which can rival the fastest ships around. ” When the transformation of the zord was complete it looked like Ashley and T. J. ‘s except the fan blades were the zords’ warrior weapons. For a while everyone wondered if they would get Ashley back. Then everyone looked at each other with a sense of resolve indicating that they would.
Everyone looked at the Zords, including Rocky, who was mesmerized by the sight. However it wasn’t long before Jason appeared by his side. “Rocky can I talk to you for a minute?” Rocky looked confused but followed Jason. “What’s going on?” Rocky asked.
“Rocky I don’t know how to tell you this. But you do deserve a right to know. ” Rocky paused wondering what Jason had to say then Jason went and said it. “While Nathan and I were teaching some new students we thought…we thought…” Rocky wondered what Jason was trying to say, and Jason had a hard time getting the words out. Finally he out and said it.
“We thought we saw Jessie. “
Rocky looked speechless, because in fact he was. He could barely get out the word “Jessie?” which he said like a whisper.
“Rocky don’t get your hopes up. Jessie died in the I. D. War. We all saw her buried. ” Jason tried to be logical and rational but Rocky was clearly not listening. In Rocky’s eyes Jason could see the hope that Jessie had been resurrected. After all if other Rangers could be brought back why not her? “Where did you see her?” Rocky asked. Jason was hesitant to answer but Rocky still asked “Where did you see her?”
“The Youth Center. At the Juice bar. But she may not be there. ” Rocky turned and ran to the jump tubes as they were lit in the five primary Astro colors of red, blue, yellow, pink, and black. Rocky went down the blue tube and teleported down to Angel Grove.
Katarina looked and saw Rocky leave. There was something about Josie’s appearance she didn’t like. She hoped it wasn’t her being jealous, but somehow she didn’t think so. At any rate she moved to go down the jump tubes.
“I’m going after Rocky. ” Katarina said. Her mind already made up. She was already at the jump tube which was lit silver when Jamie asked “What is it?”
Katarina looked at her friend and said “Woman’s intuition” as she jumped down the tube and made her way to Earth after Rocky.
That was the word flashing through Rocky DeSantos’s mind as he saw the destruction all around Angel Grove. Homes were destroyed. Emergency vehicles were trying to attend to all the injured and dying that were lying on the street. Rescue workers were trying to free people from debris that left them buried alive. In other cases just buried.
But worse of all for Rocky was the sight of the bodies that littered the street with blankets covering them. Bodies of men, women and children all killed in a senseless massacre by a race of cold machines. Colder than the Machine Empire could have ever been.
“I can’t believe it either. ” Katarina said as she stood behind Rocky. Rocky wondered how she got there and Katarina said “I used the jump tube. Figured that you needed a friend. “
“Thanks. ” Rocky said grateful for Katarina’s company. “I think Jessie might be at the Youth Center. Probably at the computer lab there. She always did like to help out with them. If she wants us to find her that’s where she’ll be. “
“Let’s go. ” Katarina said as she and Rocky made their way to the Youth Center where Rocky hoped Jessie Belle would be waiting for him. Katarina Petronov however hoped that whatever Rocky found would not break his heart.
The Youth Center was a hustle and bustle of activity. So many people sought refuge there since it was a designated monster shelter. However as Rocky and Katarina looked in at the place they realized that even the Youth Center wasn’t meant to take the amount of punishment they saw before them.
Girders had fallen from the roof, as well as plaster. Paramedics were by the sides of the injured. Even those who only had rudimentary first aid helped out the injured. So many people were bandaged or needed help to stop the bleeding that was going around. “It’s just like outside. ” Katarina said.
“It’s like that all over the planet. ” Rocky added. “If Iblis hadn’t taken out the Cylons it could be much worse. “
“You know what the scary part is? These people know that, and they just might act on that knowledge. ” Rocky nodded knowing that Katarina could just be right. Already they heard murmurs throughout the crowd saying that they were grateful that Iblis appeared when he did, and were thinking about following him and being under his protection. Rocky wished that he could warn them that Iblis may not be so benevolent as he appeared, but the warmth and relief that he heard when Iblis’s name was mentioned made him think twice. To the people here, he was a savior and the second coming. Rocky and the Rangers needed to find a way to prove to the world that Iblis was not as benign as he appeared to be. A task that seemed easier said than done. “Come on let’s see if Jessie’s here and get back to the Megaship. “
“I’m with you. ” Katarina said as she and Rocky went over to where Ernie was trying to clean up the juice bar. “Hey guys. ” Ernie said. “What’s happening?”
Rocky couldn’t help but sound amused as Ernie spoke in a ‘business as usual’ manner. ~ He must have so much confidence in us. ~ Rocky thought. ~ I just wonder if we can back it up this time. ~ “We’re trying to regroup to launch an attack against the Cylons. “
“Yeah. It was a good thing that Count Iblis appeared when he did. If he…” Ernie then noticed the looks on Rocky and Katarina’s faces as Iblis’s name was spoken. “There’s something about him isn’t there?”
“Well let’s just say that Iblis may not be the benign saint that he appears to be. ” Katarina said. “Before you make up your mind about him make sure you go in eyes wide open. ” Ernie looked confused as Katarina then explained.
“Why did he appear as the planet was under massive attack?” Katarina asked. “If he cared so much why didn’t he show up before the Cylons appeared? I think if he cared he would have shown up a long time ago. ” Ernie listened to Katarina’s words then he said “What are you saying? Are you saying that he’s in league with the Cylons?”
“Or he’s capitalizing on their attack. ” Rocky said. “He wants something from us. He wants us all to follow him, and I don’t think where he wants to lead us is a very good place. ” Ernie listened and considered Rocky’s words. He nodded at both of them saying that he would consider what Rocky and Katarina had to say. “So why didn’t the Rangers appear?” he asked.
“Power Chamber was the first thing they attacked. ” Rocky said. “They rammed ships into the chamber that were packed with explosives. When the ships crashed everything was wrecked. We had to relocate to a new base for a while so we could mount a new offensive. “
“A new offensive? Are you saying the Cylons are still out there?” Ernie asked clearly scared. Rocky and Katarina both nodded and suddenly Ernie knew what this was about. If they didn’t accept Iblis willingly then they would face destruction at the hands of the Cylons. Clearly Iblis wanted something from the people of Earth. Rocky decided to change the subject though and asked “Look Ernie, have you seen a girl that looks a lot like Jessie come in here?”
“Look like her? Hey I’ve seen her!” Ernie said. Rocky and Katarina were wide eyed and Rocky immediately asked “Where?”
“She’s down in the computer lab. ” Ernie explained. “She’s checking out equipment and also helping the injured out there. ” Rocky thanked Ernie and he and Katarina ran down the hallway to see if Jessie was there. Once they got to the doorway Rocky noticed a few bodies just outside. “More victims. ” He said. “And Jessie could be one of them. “
“Are you ready for this?” Katarina asked as Rocky paused wondering if he had the courage to face what was on the other side. “I won’t know if I’m sitting out here. Let’s do it. “
Rocky and Katarina walked into the computer lab and saw the same sight before them as they saw in the juice bar. People dead, dying or injured lying trying to be helped any way that they could. Some were even trying to re-establish the phone lines so they could contact relief workers, even though it would probably be unlikely that relief would come.
One of those trying to help was Jessie Belle.
Rocky couldn’t believe his eyes. Here was the girl he loved, alive once again, healed from the death blow Harper had given her. How she came back didn’t matter. That she was just back was what counted. Quickly Rocky made his way to where Jessie was, hunched over a computer hoping to get a diagnostic screen to appear. “Jessie?” Rocky asked.
Jessie answered by looking up and staring Rocky in the eye as surprise crossed her face. “Rocky?” she asked as she got back up. Slowly but surely they made their way to each other and Rocky and Jessie embraced. Both leaned forward and kissed one another as the two young lovers appeared to be reunited. Off to the side Katarina looked on at the display of affection and made a noise as if subtly saying for them to break it up.
Rocky and Jessie both broke the kiss as Rocky looked in Jessie’s eyes. She looked so different yet she seemed so much the same. “I don’t get it. How did you come back? You were dead. “
“I was dead. But Josie brought me back with the help of Count Iblis. They wanted to use me to lead all you Rangers into a trap. ” Jessie explained. “I however got away once they were finished resurrecting me and I tried to find you guys trying to warn you. “
Katarina looked off to the side wondering about Jessie’s story. Granted she didn’t know Jessie all that well, and never had the chance to, but there was still something wrong with her. “How did they resurrect you?” she asked.
“They grabbed my soul and they put it into a cloned body. That’s why I seem so different. ” Jessie explained. “Also before I escaped I saw two prisoners being escorted throughout the halls of the ship. Two girls in yellow. ” Rocky and Katarina didn’t need any explanations there. The two girls could only have been Jinx and Ashley. “We’d better get to the Megaship. ” Rocky said. Katarina nodded reluctantly but knew that ‘Jessie’ could be the only source of info about the base ships and how to get Jinx and Ashley off them. Rocky activated his communicator and called the Megaship. “Dimitria we’re ready for transport. “
“Stand by. ” Dimitria said as she activated the teleport streams once Rocky, Katarina and Jessie were safely hidden. Rocky, Katarina and ‘Jessie’ both felt the teleportation energies overtake them as the three made their way to the Astro Megaship.
On Onyx, the UAE was in an uproar. Many of the overlords were wondering what was going to be done about the Cylon invasion.
“My Virtual Reality operations are in danger of being destroyed!” Grimlord said.
“The Spider base is damaged, and may take me forever to rebuild. ” Dregon added.
“Digitropolis will take a long time to repair. ” Kilokhan added. “But I can’t begin repair operations if the Cylon attacks persist. “
“And what of Orbus!” Mondo protested. “Who knows how much the Cylons are learning from him. “
So many voices were raised in an uproar demanding a solution. Rita and Zedd added their two cents. So did Divatox and Momma D. Even Master Vile, who had his own opinions about the situation with the Cylons found himself unable to get his point across with all the differing viewpoints. Only Artemis and Astronema kept their voices quiet waiting for the moment when they would grab the UAE’s undivided attention.
Finally Dark Specter had enough as he brought his foot down hard on the ground and called for QUIET!!!!! Everyone quickly shut up after that, and Dark Specter addressed his followers.
“I know the Cylon invasion is putting a hamper on our own invasion plans. But right now there doesn’t seem to be an immediate solution at this time. I refuse to commit all our forces against this enemy. An enemy that invokes fear in some of our own beings. ” Dark Specter looked at Divatox shaking, and knew she was one who was scared of the Cylons. Everyone else was putting on brave faces, but Dark Specter knew that they were afraid to face the Cylons as well.
“Perhaps we can be of help. ” Astronema said as she and Artemis stepped forward. Dark Specter seemed intrigued and asked, “What do you have in mind Astronema?”
Astronema smiled as she shared a look with Artemis before speaking. “You remember the time the Draconian Empire was added to the UAE forces?” Dark Specter remembered it well. Astronema made overtures to the King of the empire, King Dracon, but Dracon’s desire for Astronema became his undoing as he found his kingdom conquered the next night, and all his territories under UAE control. Astronema never lowered herself to the level Dracon desired. She was too smart for that.
“Well I had come across a few plans for future warships Dracon was looking to build. One of them came to my attention. ” Astronema turned to the viewer and the schematic of a ship appeared. It was red with its center shaped like a narrow arrowhead. Wings seemed to protrude from its side with jagged round cones protruding from the front. The cockpit seemed to be protected by a transparent red polymer and the top seemed to be a thick tail assembly. One engine was seen from the back providing the ship with it’s thrust. It was a sinister looking ship, but a force in its own right as well.
“May I present to you the Draconian Marauder. ” Astronema said proudly. “Built from stolen technology from the IGPF’s Viper project, the Marauder is a deadly machine capable of great firepower, and protection. Its armored hull can deflect an assortment of laser blasts, and is maneuverable in its own right. “
“An impressive ship Astronema. ” Dark Specter said. “How many do you have?”
“About two squadrons worth. ” Astronema said. Dark Specter then asked, “What do you plan to do with them?”
“This time Artemis stepped forward. “I plan to use them, to help the Rangers defend the Earth. ” This got shocks from the entire council crowd. “You want to help the Rangers?!” Momma D said in complete disbelief.
“Only to defend our interests in the planet. ” Artemis said. “The Cylons are a mutual enemy we have. Once they are dealt with, we will return to our own agendas. “
“And who will fly these ships?” Zedd asked. “Surely you don’t expect a Quantron to fly one?”
“No. I’d just as soon have Elgar fly one. ” Artemis said. This got a “Hey!!!” from Elgar, but no one paid it any mind. “I plan to get my pilots from the slave pens. “
Again shock from the UAE council erupted. “Freeing slaves?! That’s never been done!!” Master Vile said.
“We don’t have a choice. ” Artemis said. “We can’t use our own troops without incurring heavy losses. When we use our own the time has to be right, but not now. We need pilots that can match these machines on a different level. “
“And you’re going to offer them freedom?” Dark Specter asked.
“Well that depends how you define ‘freedom’. ” Artemis said with a smirk. Dark Specter picked up on it and said “All right Artemis. Assemble your slave army. And Astronema, ready your ships. “
“Thank you Dark Specter. ” The two Astro girls said in bowing. They both turned to leave and Astronema asked Artemis “What was that about? ‘How you define freedom?’ You’re not thinking of actually freeing those slaves are you?”
“As a matter of fact I am. ” Artemis said. “But not necessarily the way one expects. ” Astronema was intrigued by what Artemis had in mind and Artemis said “Let’s just say a history of the Cylons wasn’t the only thing I picked up from Adama’s journals. I picked up a few lessons on Colonial history as well. Specifically how to deal with some prisoners. “
In his chamber on the moon Zedd was staring at the frozen form of Leslie Zedden lost in thought. Artemis and Astronema were looking to help the Rangers drive back the Cylons to keep the planet on the UAE’s wish list. Zedd didn’t know why he was thinking this, but he had the same thoughts. He wanted to drive back the Cylons so Earth would be his to conquer. And if that meant joining forces with the Rangers, then so be it.
He also pictured that he would see Larry Zedden’s daughter at the battle. If that was true, then Jamie Zedden would learn that her father was gone, and her mother would never return again. But right now, the Cylons were Zedd’s concern.
“Goldar! Ready Serpenterra Mark II. ” Zedd ordered. “I’m joining the battle too. ” Rita and Goldar found the request to be odd, but Goldar obeyed. Rita however asked “What’s up Zedd? Is Larry pounding in the back of your head again?”
“He is under control. ” Zedd said. “I’m just looking to make sure WE have our chance to defeat the Rangers, not some moronic machines with dancing red eyes. ” Goldar returned after a few hours and said “Serpenterra Mark II is ready. “
“Excellent!” Zedd said as he made his way to his newly built zord. The old Serpenterra was used to build the Ranger’s Sky Zords, but that didn’t matter now. Zedd was going to make sure no one interfered with Lord Zedd’s business, and lived.
Not the machines, not the Cylons, not Rita, not ANYONE!!!
On the Dark Fortress Artemis waited for Ecliptor to come back with the slaves she asked for. Those with flight and fighter experience. When she heard the ping of her chamber door she called “Enter. ” The door then opened and Ecliptor arrived with six slaves. Two humans named Buell and Kari, one Aquaitian named Ella, an Edenite named Brandar, another slave named Andor and finally an Amazonian named Festa. All were exemplary pilots if the files that were hacked from the council mainframe gave any indication.
“What do you want Astronema?” Brandar asked. He thought Artemis was Astronema as did the rest of the slaves, but Artemis gave made no attempts to correct that assumption. Instead she looked at the slave and asked “Would you like a drink?”
“This is about those Cylons isn’t it?” Ella said as the Quantrons handed each of the six slaves a drink. “It is. And with your help, and fourteen others that will be chosen later, I plan to destroy them. “
“With our help?” Festa scoffed. “What makes you think you have anything we want. “
“You’ll do it. ” Artemis said looking at the slaves respectively “If you want to gain your freedom. ” This got the slaves’ attention as Artemis continued. “I’m offering you freedom in exchange for help in destroying the Cylons. “
“And how would you define freedom?” Kari asked.
“We have come across an array of barely habitable planets nearby. I intend to set all of you on one. Of course you will have to fend for yourselves of course. No provisions, and no shelter. ” Artemis said. Brandar got the message and said what Artemis was meaning “Marooned. “
Artemis just smirked. “It’s better than the slave pens. And don’t even think about asking for communications. If we’re all destroyed you won’t need them anyway. “
The slaves nodded as Buell asked “And when are we to be set free?”
“After the Cylons are destroyed” was Artemis’s answer. Andor asked “What if they destroy you? And us along with you?”
“Well that’s the risk you’re going to have to take. Do we have an agreement?” The slaves considered Artemis’s proposal and accepted it. They could always arrange a communications method some time later. Perhaps even a short range marker beacon. “And we select the other fourteen?”
“Correct. And don’t even think about asking for more releases. I only have enough fighters for twenty. ” Artemis stated. The six then nodded. They would have to choose their pilots quickly and carefully so the chance that the others might be free would be in the slaves’ favor.
“And now to show you your fighters. ” Artemis said as she led the six to their Marauders. Needless to say there wasn’t a slave around that couldn’t wait to get behind the controls.
“Whoa!” Buell said.
“By the goddess. ” Festa said. “That thing is a death machine. “
“And they are ours to fly?” Kari asked. Artemis just nodded
“The Cylons are doomed. ” Andor said.
Ella was too stunned to speak but Brandar said “We’ll fly. ” Artemis nodded but then added “Oh, and remember. If anyone tries to take a shot at me, the computers will order your ships to self destuct, and your compatriots will spend the rest of their lives in the slave pens. If you don’t die first. ” Artemis sneered.
The slaves got the message. They couldn’t wait to fly, and they couldn’t wait to be free.
On board the Astro Megaship Rocky entered the bridge with Katarina with him, as well as Jessie. The Zeos, Morphin and Outsiders couldn’t believe what they were seeing. And what they saw was Jessie Belle alive.
“How?” Tanya was able to ask. Rocky answered with “The Cylons cloned her body and put her soul inside it hoping to turn her against us. But she escaped. ” Jessie then stepped forward with a “Hi guys. “
“Uhhh hi!” was all Kat could say. Tyler, Jason and Tommy however stepped forward and offered their hands as if welcoming her back. Jessie took the hands and greeted all the others that were there: Zack, Adam, Kat, Tanya, David, Samantha, Samoht, Richie, Jamie, Christina, Lillian, Nate, Alison, Cassie, Andros, Carlos, T. J. , and Sabrina who she was surprised was there. And a Ranger no less. “Don’t worry. I get that a lot. ” She said with a smile. Jessie just nodded but then she turned her attention to the one who got the power of Silver Zeo-Cassidy.
“Hello. ” Cassidy said offering her hand to Jessie. Jessie took it and returned the greeting. “I’m sorry about your mom and dad. ” Jessie said.
“Thanks. ” Cassidy said. However she felt a little bit of apprehension when it came to Jessie, and Cassidy didn’t know why. It seemed like there was something ‘off’ with her. It was another strong feeling like she had before with Iblis, only Jessie didn’t seem as dark as Iblis did. However Jessie did seem to have a touch of it.
~ Must be her contact with the Cylons. ~ Cassidy said trying to reassure herself, and failing. Despite her strong feelings however the main question was still in Cassidy's mind 'Is she going to want her powers back?'
Fortunately Tommy changed the subject. “Jessie, you spent some time on the Cylon ship. Did you see two girls there? One of them being Terry?”
“Terry Jones? Yeah I saw her. She and another girl were getting tortured by Josie, Iblis and some witch that looks like Trini with a bad dye job. ” Everyone knew who Jessie was talking about. She was talking about Kali.
“This other girl does she look like me?” Alison asked. Jessie nodded “Yeah, exactly like you, only without the streak of green in her hair. ” Andros felt his blood run cold. “That’s Ashley. Was she still okay?”
Jessie thought about her answer then said “Ashley and Terry were alive last I saw them, but I’m sure they’re dead by now. ” Again Andros’s blood ran cold. However Alison and Samantha had something different to say.
“Ashley’s alive I know it. ” Alison said sure of herself.
“And so’s Terry. ” Samantha added.
“All right then. We need to put together a rescue mission. ” Jason said. “For that we’ll need the Sky Zords operational. “
“Jessie would you mind going down to the Power Chamber and helping Billy and the others out?” Tommy asked. Jessie said it would be no problem. “Can Rocky come with me?” Tommy didn’t see why he couldn’t. “Watch her will you?” he asked.
“I will. ” Rocky said as he and Jessie made their way to the teleport tubes. All the while Cassidy looked on wondering what would happen next. After a few minutes however she went to her quarters to think.
Quarters had been set up for the Zeo Rangers on board the Astro Megaship, and Cassidy quickly took advantage of the space to get her head together. Her instincts seemed to be working in overdrive as if warning her of intense danger.
She wondered if it could be because of Evan and Kelly’s death, as well as her parents’ state in the hospital, but somehow that didn’t seem to be it. ~ Is it the crystal again?~ she asked herself. ~ Is it changing me again?~ That answer didn’t seem to be the one she was looking for either, but before she could ask herself another question Cassidy felt as if there was someone in the room with her. Someone she didn’t know, or know of.
“Who’s there?” Cassidy asked looking around. However the feeling vanished as soon as Cassidy asked the question
Outside the Megaship, protected by an invisibility screen, a young woman appeared in a ship’s cockpit. She had teleported into Cassidy’s quarters in a state of phasing, but when Cassidy seemed to sense her presence she quickly left and teleported back to her ship completely phased into reality.
The ship itself was meant to carry one person, but this ship had much more to offer its pilot. It could fly through time, space and reality. Originally it was a small ship from the 30th Century in another reality, but since then it had been altered significantly.
And there was more to the pilot as well. For while she looked to be a young woman in her late teens, she was actually thousands of years old and guardian of an aspect of power that she had no doubt Cassidy Bridges was tapping into on an instinctive level.
“It’s happening. ” Karla the Grey Witch said. “Just as I had planned. “
At the Power Chamber Billy, Kimberly, Bulk, Skull, Emily, Aisha and Nathan saw Rocky arrive with Jessie in tow. All of them couldn’t believe it when they saw Jessie, even when Rocky explained it. Kimberly however was the first to welcome her back. “Good to see you again Jessie. ” Kimberly said as she gave Jessie a friendly hug, followed by Aisha and Skull who was glad to see one of his team return from the dead. Bulk, Billy, Emily and Nathan also welcomed her back with handshakes.
“I’m sorry to rush the welcome back but we could definitely use some help in getting the Sky Zords up and running. ” Billy said. “Could you give us a hand?” Jessie nodded and immediately began work. As they worked Emily decided to strike up some conversation. “So have you gotten your Zeo Powers back?”
“Uhhh no not yet. The situation right now doesn’t allow much time for a power transfer. ” Tommy said that everyone is needed and right now I’m needed to get zords running. ” Jessie answered.
“What do you think of the new girl? Cassidy?” Aisha then asked.
“Not sure. I do think she’s reluctant to give up the powers to me however when the time comes. ” This got everybody’s attention. “Why do you think that?” Emily asked.
“I don’t know. I guess…I guess she likes being a Ranger too much. I don’t know her all that well but she seems like one of those ‘all that’ types. You know, cool crowds, pep rallies, stuff like that. ” Kimberly felt her blood run cold when Jessie said this. A lot of those activities that she heard Jessie describe were like the activities she used to do before she became a Ranger. Right now Kimberly wasn’t sure how to answer Jessie, especially considering Cassidy’s family and friends were attacked or killed by Jessie’s sister, so she changed the subject instead. “So you think Cassidy wouldn’t be a good Ranger?” she asked.
“I’m not sure. I think she may not want to give up the powers though. ” She answered. However it was Rocky who spoke up in Cassidy’s defense. “I don’t think so. ” He said. “I think she’s got a good heart. And if the time comes when she needs to give up the powers she will. “
“How can you be so sure?” Nathan asked. Rocky explained. “Well she sought to go back for the Silver Astro when he was injured. She fought well against the Cylons when they first attacked her town. I think there’s more to her than we’re seeing. And I also think we’ll see more of her before this is all over. “
“Well at any rate we have to get these Sky Zords up and running. ” Billy said, however he would make it a point to double-check everything she did. The work went on for hours until finally Billy decided it was time to take a break. To that end Jessie led Rocky to the guest quarters for a moment alone.
“Jessie what are you doing?” Rocky asked.
“Hush. ” Jessie said softly as she softly kissed him on the lips then took him in the arms and kissed him some more. When they broke away Rocky asked “What was that for?”
“I’ve missed you. I don’t want to lose another minute. Because one never knows when they’ll have another chance again. ” With that Jessie took off her shirt leaving Rocky to contemplate the sight before him. His girlfriend, semi-naked as if subtly beckoning him to come forth. Allowing himself to be led to the bed Rocky came forward and stopped just before they reached the edge of it. Jessie then reached under Rocky and pulled off his blue shirt. Both were soon touching as they felt the heat from one another. “Jessie are you sure we should be doing this?”
“We never had the chance to before. If I die again I want to have at least one moment with the man I love before I go. ” That was an offer Rocky could not refuse as he leaned forward and kissed Jessie so they both fell back on the bed.
What happens next stays behind closed doors.
Inside the TARDIS Billy was hoping to use the instruments there to find Trini, who ran off the job she was doing in a huff. Billy asked her for a hydrospanner and suddenly he saw Trini in tears and just run away. With some help from the Doctor he was able to mount a search for her by locking onto her power signature and Billy made his way there using the old flying VW bug he had in mothballs. When he found her she was at Maguire’s Leap looking out at the ocean below.
“Trini?” Billy asked. Trini just waved him away. Billy however refused to take that for an answer.
“Trini?” Billy said walking forward just as Trini turned around with her hand on fire. A hand glowing with a purple fire. “Trini…what the…”
“It’s my power. A power that was handed down from generation to generation. A power that was once good corrupted to serve the darkest evil. ” Trini paused before adding the next line. “As well as those who wield it. “
“Trini what are you talking about?” Billy asked. Trini went into an explanation as to what happened with her mother. “She’s part of a family known as the Yagami. A family she tried to break away from. But Triini, or Kali as she’s now called, seems to have embraced the dark heritage that my mother, myself, and now she, all share. ” Trini then went into an explanation as to what she found out from her mother. From the deal with Orochi 660 years ago which corrupted Trini’s family’s share of a great power, to the dark legacy that Trini had been a part of for centuries. “And now Kali wants me to embrace that power myself. She wants me to embrace the evil that is in my family’s blood. “
“Trini no. ” Billy said taking her into his arms. “You can’t. “
“But what if I can’t fight it?” Trini asked as tears flowed down her face. “I’ve only now been awakened to it and I can feel it inside me. Tempting me, wanting me to embrace it. What if I become something terrible? Worse than what Rita and Zedd were? What if…I’m meant to be evil?”
Billy held Trini close to him as he looked into her eyes. “You’re not. I know you’re not. And before you say anything let me tell you why. Because I’ve grown up with a girl who has not only been my best friend since grade school but who has been with me even through the troubled times. A girl who was chosen to be a Ranger alongside me, and since then has proven her courage and goodness countless time. A goodness no evil can change. No matter what, you will always be Trini Kwan. You will always be…” Billy and Trini started to move closer together as they prepared to kiss but then Trini pushed him back. “No I can’t. “
Billy also felt himself blush as he remembered Cestria who was lost on Aquitar. It was too soon for him to get involved with another woman. Especially Trini who he was closest to. Quickly Billy got back to topic and said to Trini “You’re not a Yagami. You’re a Kwan. A Kwan chosen by the power to be the Yellow Morphin Ranger. A power of infinite goodness who chooses its bearers wisely, and I believe the power made the right choice when it chose you no matter what evil power you might obtain.
“You have a choice Trini. You can choose to be what Kali wants you to be, or you can choose to be what you know in your heart is true. You can be a person who is strong, good, brave, smart and caring. You can be the Yellow Morphin Ranger. ” Trini considered Billy’s words and looked down at her hand. The purple fires were blazing but then Trini concentrated on the good memories within her and the fires started to die down until all that emanated from her own hand was her own body heat. Turning to Billy she smiled and said “Thanks Billy. “
Come on let’s go back. I could use your help with the Sky Zords. ” Billy said as he led Trini back to the Power Chamber. Not far away however, unnoticed by the two friends, an echo of evil laughter filled the air.
In another section of the Megaship Cassidy sat staring out the porthole looking into space. As she stared she thought about the events that were happening. Her stepmother was dead. A man she might have loved once is dead. Both her parents were almost dead, and now the previous bearer of her powers-a girl who was dead herself-was now seemingly back. And Cassidy was almost certain that Jessie would want the powers back.
But there was something in Cassidy that said that returning the powers was a mistake. A very strong feeling that said there was something not quite right about Jessie. In her heart and soul she knew this, even if she didn’t know where it was coming from. She knew there was something different about Jessie Belle. Something dark. Her train of thought was interrupted by Lillian who came in and asked “Penny for your thoughts?”
Cassidy noticed the Outsider standing in the doorway and invited her to sit next to her. “Pull up a chair. ” Cassidy said beckoning to a crate that was nearby. Lillian did so and stared at the stars along with Cassidy. “Nice view. Granted I don’t get to see it much from this distance but nice view. “
“Real easy to get lost isn’t it?’ Cassidy asked making reference to the stars. “Sometimes I’d look out among them wonder if I’d ever find the man of my dreams. Granted I haven’t done that yet but that doesn’t stop me from wishing. “
“I know the feeling. I remember looking out at the stars from Maguire’s Leap before Biilly drafted me. ” Lillian felt a small weight come down on her as she remembered how Biilly had basically recruited her right from the cradle infusing the replica and the Zeo Shadow shard to her when she was born. When she became aware of her Zeo Powers and what Biilly had done she had known nothing but darkness since. And when she looked at Cassidy Lillian thought she saw a darkness in her eyes, or at least thoughts of a darkness.
“You thinking about Jessie?” Lillian asked. “You’re wondering if you have to give her powers back to her?”
Cassidy couldn’t help but nod. “And Josie too, but Jessie’s my big focus. I don’t know. It’s like…she’s off somehow. Don’t ask me how to explain it, but I feel that something’s wrong with her. “
“You’re not the only one who thinks so. ” Lillian said looking at Cassidy reassuringly. “When touched by darkness, one learns to recognize it straight away. And I’ll tell you, there’s something different about Jessie, and I’m not sure it’s a good thing. “
“So you think I should keep my powers?” Cassidy asked. Lillian however had something else to say. “I think you should keep your eyes open around her. If you feel comfortable about giving up the powers then you will. And before you ask ‘What if I don’t’ I have a serious feeling that you will. ” Cassidy smiled as she turned to the doorway to see Alison inside wearing a uniform much like the Astro Rangers only the shirt was green and Alison still had her green cap on. “Nice look. ” Cassidy said.
“Andros insisted. God I feel like I’m back in private school again. ” Alison complained. “But right now we have to meet. Billy’s team is back and we’re about to have a council of war in the briefing room. Terry is also there and Gaudeamas has come up too. “
“We’d better get over there then. ” Cassidy said as she, Alison and Lillian all followed the hallway to the briefing room where the next move against Kali, Iblis, Josie and the Cylons would be thought out and made.
“Wow Billy. Where did you get the plans to these zords?” Bulk asked as he torqued some parts in Zeo Sky Zord 1. The zord itself looked like a concorde aircraft, but there was clearly more than met the eye with this zord. The same with the four zords that complemented Sky Zord 1, which looked suspiciously like F-16 aircraft.
“The plans for the Sky Zords and the Techno Zords came from the Lightspeed mainframe. ” Billy said. “My Uncle Bill and Cousin Dana are both members of that group. “
“Dana? Are you referring to the same Dana we met when she was taken by Ranitime and her body was mutated?” Kimberly asked. Billy said “Exactly the same. Only my cousin Dana is from this reality. And she wasn’t mutated. “
“All right. Now for the million dollar question. Who’s going to be piloting all these zords?” Skull asked. Billy was quick to answer. “The Sky Zords will still be going with Zeo Team 1. Skull, the Techno Zords will be the Zords for Zeo Team II. Which is why the color scheme is being changed as well. “
Skull looked at the five zords that would be under his teams’ command. Skull looked at his ship, formerly Techno Zord 5, now known as Techno Zord 6 since Skull would be it’s pilot. It was a two winged futuristic aircraft with a cylinder on the tip. It was said to have two additional modes, one a mode reminiscent of a Megazord, a secondary cannon mode, and third was as a component for a gestault Megazord. All the Technozords were like this. The Sky Zords were the same way.
Emily’s Technozord, Techno Zord 8, was a Double barreled gun ship with its guns at the front of the ship. Like Skull’s zord, it transformed much the same way. Techno Zord 9, Richie’s Zord, was formerly Techno Zord 3, but changed to accommodate the Black Zeo Ranger. This Zord was a drilling machine that would become part of Pyramidas when involved in space battle.
Techno Zord 7 and Techno Zord 10 would follow the same principle. Cassidy’s Techno Zord was that of a silver sports car with weapons on the side. Techno Zord 10, Bulk’s Zord, was that of a motorcycle with a cockpit.
Techno Zord 10 was also configured to be a part of Pyramidas, so that if Zeo Team II needed to form the Techno Megazord he could drive Techno Zord 10 out to assist. If Pyramidas was needed Bulk could just as easily control it from remote. .
Cassidy’s gaze then fell seven other zords off to the side. They were of the Morphin Rangers’ color scheme even though the biggest zord was more of a gray color with purple and green trim. “What are those zords there?” Cassidy asked.
“Those were the prototype Sky Zords I had been developing before I got the plans from Lightspeed for the current Sky and Techno Zords. ” Billy explained. Aisha then asked “Are you going to use them?”
Jessie then looked up from her station looking over a Sky Zord. “What makes you think they’re going to be used?”
“Well we can’t really depend on the Sky Zords and Techno Zords are we?” Trini asked getting what Aisha was looking to say. “We’ll need all the help we can get right?”
“Billy. I think she may have a point. ” Nathan said. “If nothing else, the Morphin Rangers can use them to fly up and assist us. “
“I can get the Drop Zord functioning in no time. ” Aisha said.
“Besides we’re almost done with the Sky and Techno Zords. Perhaps we should have all available firepower at the ready. ” Emily added. Billy considered the words and said “All right. We’ll finish up the Sky and Techno Zords, then we’ll work with the Sky Zord prototypes. ” Everyone applauded and went back to work.
Rocky however was distracted with Jessie as she was working on the Sky Zords’ computer system. “Something on your mind?” she asked coyly.
“No not really. Just that…” Rocky paused having trouble getting the words out, until finally he managed it. “…just that…I’m happy to see you. “
“Likewise. ” Jessie smiled. “But now I have to get back to work. These zords need to be ready. ” Jessie resumed her work as Rocky watched. She then said, “You guys have never faced a foe as deadly as the Cylons. It will be a battle you guys will never forget. “
At Gaudeamas Corp, or rather a section of the San Francisco Naval Yards Gaudeamas Corp was able to acquire(and was still intact), Jamie and Tyler appeared to oversee a final project. Panni was waiting to give a final debriefing on how the project was coming.
“We were lucky to acquire the plans for these zords from Zordon, as well as the plans to the ship so we could salvage it. We do have a computer system installed, but the 9000 series developed by Dr. Chandra is still very much experimental. “
“No problem Panni. We’re grateful for whatever help you can give. ” Tyler and Jamie looked at the five zords, and the spaceship that the special wing of the Naval Yards possessed. One was a green Harrier Jet. Three were F-16’s, not necessarily as advanced as the Sky Zords, but they could do the job. One was purple. One was in silver, and another was jet black with white trim. Clearly these zords were meant for Tyler, Jamie, Katarina and Lillian in that specific order.
The final Zord was a hovercraft, which while probably not able to fight in space, could possibly be used to boost the power to the spaceship nearby. A ship that normally would carry up to eight, yet probably would still with the space faring zords of the Outsiders going into battle.
This ship was Earth’s Fire. An interstellar space vehicle that Zordon created for the Rangers, yet was never fully completed. It saw some action, yet took damage due to premature use, and was retired. At least until the Outsiders ‘appropriated’ it, as well as the plans for the Zeo Jet Zords, for which the Outsider Zords were based on.
“The Cybersliders were a challenge though. ” Panni said. “We never dealt with such a technology before, however we found something similar in the technical archives. Something dealing with Hoverboards. “
“Like in ‘Back to the Future?'” Jamie asked. “I thought they didn’t exist. “
“They do exist Jamie. Or rather they would have if sufficient funds went into constructing safety equipment to complement them. But that technology, despite the hoverboards able to exist, is still decades away. ” Panni explained. “But we were able to make use of what there was from the hoverboards to modify the Cybersliders. “
“Wow. I can’t wait to see these things in action. ” Tyler said. Panni then added “You will. Lord Laocorn will be accompanying you. ” This got a “WHAT?!!” from Jamie and Tyler.
“He believes he recognizes this being that appeared before everyone. He wishes to confront it. ” Tyler asked if Laocorn knew the risks facing Count Iblis. “He understands the risks. After all, he met the dark being when he wore the Armor of Mars. “
“He saw Iblis?” Jamie asked.
“And now he must confront the demon. For his own sake. ” Panni then tuned to leave as Jamie and Tyler considered Panni’s words. However Tyler saw Jamie’s face, and saw her with a different look in her eyes as her mind reflected on something else.
“Something on your mind?” Tyler asked.
“Yeah. I just have this feeling. ” Jamie said. “That I’m going to be seeing my father soon. “
“Lord Zedd?” Tyler asked. “You sure?”
Jamie nodded. “Somehow I just know he’s going to show up. I don’t know if it’s because of me or…”
“…or his own interests on Earth. ” Tyler said nodding. “Well one way or another. We’ll know soon. “
Jamie nodded as she and Tyler looked over the Outsider Jet Zords and Earth’s Fire. All was in readiness. Now they just had to contact the Megaship.
In space a War Council of the Rangers was in session. The Rangers in question being the Astro Rangers, the Morphin Rangers, both teams of Zeo Rangers and the Outsiders. Jamie had contacted the megaship and told them that the Outsiders’ space zords were at the ready. Billy then called and said the Sky Zords and Techno Zords were ready as well. Tyler, Jason and Tommy then gave the orders to come on up to the Megaship.
No sooner had they arrived that the meeting began. Trini and Cassie saw each other for the first time, and there seemed to be some aversion both were feeling towards one another. Neither one asked about it. Right now they were Rangers, and they had a world to save.
When everyone was assembled Andros spoke first. “We got satellite imaging from D. E. C. A. Apparently every world leader, or their representative is rallying at the United Nations where Iblis is expecting his answer. “
“Iblis practically made it a demand that the leaders speak with the voice of their people, even though it didn’t sound like one. ” Tommy said. “The world is afraid that if they don’t say yes totally then the Cylons will rain death on all of Earth, and kill every living thing. “
“They’ve already had a taste of holocaust already. ” Jason added. “No one wants a full course meal. “
“Which is why we need to stop them ourselves. ” Andros said. “Sabrina said the new Astro Zords are ready. And from what the Blue Morphin Ranger says the Zeo Sky and Techno Zords are ready. We can launch a pre-emptive strike against the Cylons. “
“Uhhh excuse me…Andros is it?” Chelsea asked. “Not to sound like a cynic. But what good will an attack do?”
“We need to convince the people of Earth that Iblis is not the only means of protection for Earth. ” The Doctor said. “That you can stand against the Cylons as well. “
“Uhhh that’s all well and good. ” Katarina asked. “But if we’re all fighting against the Cylons who will be facing Iblis?”
Dimitria then spoke. “Not all of the Rangers will be going into space. At least, not right away. ” This got stares from everyone. Zordon then spoke from the viewer. “The Morphin Rangers, and the Outsiders will be going to the United Nations to face against Iblis, and to confront him on his identity. “
Everyone was agape. “Zordon are you sure about this?” Kat asked. “We won’t be able to hold off those forces for long. “
“I realize your concerns Katherine. ” Zordon said. “But the influence of the Rangers needs to be felt at that meeting. Their reputations as heroes will be necessary for the confrontation. If the Rangers are there speaking the truth Iblis will be hard pressed to continue his argument. “
“But the Rangers themselves won’t be enough. ” Zack added. “We need something else. “
“I know. ” The Doctor said. “And I think I know where to find it. ” The Doctor then asked Zack, Bulk, Samoht and Trini to follow him. “I may know where some proof exists. We’ll be back when we can. ” The four Rangers and the Doctor disappeared into the TARDIS, and then it dematerialized to a place only the Doctor knew where. Everyone hoped that the Doctor would return with the evidence they needed.
“We also have to get Ashley back. ” Alison added.
“And Terry. ” Samantha said. She then looked in Jessie’s direction casting a look that said ‘She’s not dead. No matter what you say. ‘ Whether Jessie was aware of the look or not she didn’t know. But Samantha felt there was something wrong with her. Something she didn’t trust.
“We will. ” Andros said. “Part of this attack is also part rescue mission. ” A diagram appeared revealing the three basestars that were part of the attack force. Andros pointed to the one in the center slightly further away from the others. “This is the command ship. It’s also the only one where human life signs are detected. “
“Can’t we teleport them out?” Cassie said. Andros shook his head no. “There’s some sort of scrambler that prevents teleporters from locking on. “
“Probably a little something Josie put together. ” Emily said. “She knows a bit about Ranger tech. “
“We’re going to have to disable this basestar. ” Tommy said. “Enough so that we can get a rescue team aboard. If we knock out the axis at the center, the basestar could split sending it down where we can board and find our friends. “
“Sounds risky Tommy. ” Adam said.
“I know. But we don’t have much choice. ” Tommy then turned to Andros and asked “Is the council sending any help?”
“No official help is being sent. ” Andros said. “However three may be some ‘unofficial’ help coming. I heard a rumor that Triforia may come to our aid under their own volition. Also Commander Kinwon has demonstrated anger over the council’s lack of empathy, so he may show. However there are no guarantees. “
“We’ll just have to be careful. ” Skull said. “And hope for the best. “
“Okay. We all have our assignments. Let’s go. ” The teams broke up and made their way to their respective positions. On their way to the teleport tubes Jessie stood with Rocky. “Can I fly with you?”
“I’d love it if you did. ” Rocky said glad Jessie was going along. Also in the hallway was Tommy and Lillian who gave one another kisses for luck. When they finally broke away Lillian said “Take care. “
“You too. ” Tommy said as the Zeo teams teleported to Earth.
A few minutes later the Zeo Sky Zords took to the stars, as did the two aerial Techno Zords with the other three connected to Pyramidas adding their power to his. The Astro Zords soon met up with them, and soon a squadron of 9 ships filled the starry sky on a date with destiny.
At San Francisco Airport Laocorn Gaudeamas stood outside his plane waiting for three men who would hopefully be coming with him. Soon Terry Bogard, Andy Bogard and Joe Higashi arrived. After greetings were given Panni came to Laocorn’s side.
“Is the plane ready Panni?” Laocorn asked.
“Yes my lord. The Concorde is ready to fly. ” Panni said. Laocorn then turned to look at Terry. “No matter how much I try, I can’t seem to cure her of that habit. “
“We’ll worry about that later. ” Terry said. “Are you sure you want to go through with this?” Laocorn paused for a moment then answered the question with conviction. “Yes Terry. I am. “
“So are we. “
Everyone turned around to see Mai Shiranui and Mary Ryan behind them, “Mai!” Andy exclaimed, “What are you doing here! I thought I said. . . “
“Stay to watch over your grandfather?” Mai rolled her eyes at her husband, “One, Derik may be old but he can protect himself and two, you’re concerned about my safety but to be quite honest, the safest place on this planet to me is with you Andy. After everything that I went through to end up finally getting to tie the knot with you, there is no way I’m letting you leave me after less than a year of marriage!”
Andy was left dumbfounded with Joe putting a hand on his shoulder, “No doubt about it. She’s got you whipped. “
“Shut up Joe. ” Andy muttered to him.
Terry looked over at Mary and asked, “And what’s your reason?”
“Just a feeling, ” Mary returned, “I want to see this thing through to its end. No matter what that end may be. “
“Well spoken, ” Laocorn said from the back. “It’s time. ” With that they all boarded the Concorde jet to fly across the country.
Destination: New York City.
From the Power Chamber the Zeo Sky and Techno Zords took to their launch positions. Cassidy and Richie loaded their Techno Zords onto Pyramidas with Skull and Emily flying escort with their Zords.
Zeo Team I fired up their Zords’ engines and when they were at sufficient power Tommy gave the order “Launch!” The Sky Zords, Techno Zords, and Pyramidas all took to the sky.
On board Pyramidas Black Zeo took to the flying of the massive Zord and asked Silver Zeo how she was doing. “First space combat. How do you feel?”
“Alive. ” Silver Zeo said trying to sound brave, but not hiding her nervousness. “Scared but alive. ” Skull overheard her on the intercom and nodded thinking that she was going to be fine.
On board Sky Zord 3 Blue Zeo took the controls with Jessie in the back seat. “You okay back there?” Blue Zeo asked.
“I’ll manage. ” Jessie said as she looked out at the stars. “So when are the Astro Rangers going to show up?” Tommy answered that question for Jessie, not picking up on the hostile undertones in her voice.
“Rendezvous with Astro Zords in five…four…three…two…one. ” Everyone turned to see the five new Astro Zords and the Astro Megaship following. Red Zeo spoke to the lead Astro Zord “Andros how are you handling. “
“I’m all right. These new Zords handle great!” Red Astro replied. “The Virtual Control systems are functioning well. “
“Sabrina. How are you handling with the Astro Megaship?” Pink Astro asked. “Pretty good. ” Gold Astro answered. “The Astro Megazord is ready when you guys need it. “
“Too bad Zhane couldn’t be here. ” Red Astro said making reference to his friend. But he knew Zhane had to recover from the drain of power Circuit Breaker had caused him. There was no telling what the full extent of the damages were to him. On the Sky Zords Yellow Zeo talked to Green Zeo about how he was faring, knowing full well that he was going into combat with a former enemy of the Rangers.
“Feels weird. ” Green Zeo answered. “I mean I’ve known her as Scorpina for so long. It’s going to take a while for her to get used to her being on the side of the angels. ” Just then sensor contacts were made as a series of blips appeared on the Rangers’ targetting scanners. “Targets approaching. Looks like about forty ships so far. Red Zeo called forth the warbook in the zord to identify the ships coming at them. The computer display gave the identification. An identification the Rangers and everyone one on Earth would know all too well.
“Cylon Raiders. Standard fighter craft of the Cylon forces. ” Red Zeo said. As the ships came further into view the Zeo Rangers got their first look at the Cylon fighter craft.
The ships looked sleek and styled. A sloped sheet of glass covered the cockpit where three Cylon Centurions piloted the attack craft. The ships looked saucer shaped with two engines at the rear of the ship, and the sides spread out to reveal the weapons the ships contained. They clearly were deadly, especially when attacking as a unit.
“All right Virtual Control systems on!” Andros said as he stood in his cockpit with gauntlets appearing on his legs and wrists. The other Astro Rangers activated their systems as well. “ATTACK!!!” Red Zeo then ordered. The Astro Zords all led the way to combat the Cylon Raiders.
The Sky and Techno Zords, along with Pyramidas in Space mode followed. On board the lead Raider the Centurian in charge of the attack force ordered that the ships move to intercept. The Cylons swooped in from the stars and opened fire as they unleashed a firestorm that lit up the infinite void of space.
The Astros and Zeos all picked a target and opened fire. Red Zeo saw a Raider enter his sights and wasted no time in pressing the ‘Fire’ control. Green Zeo also did the same to another Raider. Both Cylon ships went up like balls of fire.
On Pyramidas, Richie flew the zord while Silver Zeo locked onto targets and fired. Every time a Raider crossed their field of vision the guns were pressed and swarms of fire streak out across the starry expanse lighting up the sky, causing explosions that were where raiders used to be.
Even Gold Astro cuaght a few Raiders in her sights as she opened fire with the Megaship’s weapons taking out Raiders in her sights. All the Astros and Zeos were destroying their targets. Hope and skilll seemed to be on their side.
The only problem was more Raiders seemed to come their way from the massive base ships not far away.
“Oh man how are we going to beat these guys?” Black Astro asked.
“Yeah, it seems like every one we knock out more just seem to come. ” Pink Astro added.
“We got to keep at it” Green Astro said. “Jinx and Ashley are counting on us. ” Everyone seemed to agree as they sought to continue to fight against the Cylon Forces, but then something was happening to the Sky and Techno Zords as they seemed to slow down unexpectedly, especially with Raiders swarming in ready to kill them.
“We’re losing power!” Yellow Zeo said. “Systems not responding!”
“Massive computer failure!” Pink Zeo added. “We have no control!”
“All zords are like this!” White Zeo said. “We can’t fight back!”
“Jessie what’s going on? JESSIE?!!!” Blue Zeo shouted as he looked back at his girlfriend. What he saw chilled his bones as an evil smile crossed her face.
“My sister’s revenge is at hand. ” Jessie said as her eyes seemed to glow an evil red, a red that seemed to bounce across her eyes.
Like a Cylon’s. Rocky’s eyes went wide with fear when he saw the red, but had no time to act on it as her body seemed to take on a dark energy around it followed up with her dissapearing from the zord’s cockpit.
As the Cylons swarmed in Rocky didn’t even notice the calls of the Astro Rangers wondering what was happening, or their rallying to the Zeo Rangers’ defense. All Rocky was aware of was the empty spot where his supposedly resurrected girlfriend sat, and the empty space that was there now reflecting the empty space that was in his heart now.
On board the base ship Kali, Psycho Silver, and Count Iblis watched as the Sky and Techno Zords were slowing down. “It looks like your sister has made her move. ” Kali said with a smile.
. "We have them right where we want them. " Iblis said. "The next command is yours. " Iblis turned to Josie and asked what she wanted to do. Psycho Silver looked at the image before her of the Zeo Sky and Techno Zords helpless before her forces, and noticed the Astro Zords trying to form a protective web around them.
“What are they doing?” Kali asked.
“Postponing the inevitable. ” Psycho Silver said. “Iblis, could you bring Jessie here?”
"Your wish is my command. " Iblis said as a shape started to appear before the assembled. Jessie Belle stood and embraced her sister. "It is done. They will die now. "
“And we have our revenge. ” Psycho Silver said. “And when they are all destroyed we shall reclaim the power that is rightfully ours. “
Iblis looked at the two sisters and then at the battle where the Astro Rangers were trying to protect the Zeo Rangers from the attacking Cylon ships, but the Astros defenses was weakening, and soon they will fall as well.
"And now it is time for the rest of the planet to follow me. " Iblis said as he took an evil glow and teleported to the steps of the United Nations, where he would hear the voices of the people prepared to offer their allegiances to him.
Psycho Silver turned her attention to the starscape before her. She was hoping her sister’s successor would try something. She had a lesson to learn.
Flights in and out of JFK were impossible due to the damage done to the airport by attack. LaGuardia was the only New York airport that was, at best, barely operational. It was here that Senator Palmer’s plane had landed. When the plane had set down he and his wife disembarked and made their way to the waiting limo that would take them to the United Nations.
The limousine had a security detail that President Clinton had provided Palmer and his wife for the journey. As the limo made its way down the streets both Palmer, and his wife Sherry, saw the damage the Cylons had caused.
“David?” Sherry Palmer asked her husband. “Are you sure you want to confront this being? I mean he has the power to drive those aliens back. He can keep the world safe. “
“At what price though Sherry?” Palmer asked. “Do we give up our right to choose just so we can be safe? And what do we know about this being anyway? He hasn’t even given his name, if he has one. “
“I do know he’s handsome. ” Sherry said. “He seems to look like a very attractive man. “
“Moreso than me?” Palmer asked. Sherry just rolled her eyes back and punched her husband playfully. “You know what I mean. You also have to admit that he is a very persuasive public speaker. He had a voice that…reflected calm. Brought peace. Serenity if you will. “
“There are politicians who are the same way come election year. ” Palmer said. “We need to know more about this being, before this country becomes committed to following him. For all we know he could be the devil in disguise. “
Sherry seemed surprised by the choice of words. “David, were you listening to an Elvis song before the attack?” Palmer looked Sherry dead in the eye as if saying that he was serious.
“It was said in the bible that before he was cast out Satan was the most beautiful angel of heaven. When he fell from grace that was when he took a more monstrous appearance. ” Sherry was wide eyed as she heard Palmer’s words. “Are you saying that you think this being is the devil?”
“I don’t know Sherry, but we’ll find out soon enough. ” Palmer and Sherry rode the rest of the way in silence as they came to the UN building. The Secretary-General welcomed Palmer and Sherry and led them to the main assembly hall where representatives of every country were there. The regular representatives that were either killed or unable to attend had substitutes that were ready to fill the voids left.
Palmer himself filled that void left by the absence of the American representative to the UN. The Secretary-General then ordered everyone to take their seats and to await the arrival of the strange being that would offer them protection from the Cylons. They didn’t have to wait long as he appeared in a shimmer of light in the center of the room. That shimmer took the form of a man who looked around at all the assembled delegates in the room.
"I am relieve that all of you could be here. " Iblis said. "You are all aware of the great responsibility that has been placed before you?" The delegates all nodded in understanding.
"Well as I said before, I can protect you from the coming invaders. I have already driven them back, but they can return again. I cannot act again unless all of your countries place themselves under my dominion. This prompted Palmer to sit up and take the offensive with questions.
“Excuse me. ” Palmer had said as he sat up to speak. “But you protected us once before. Why can’t you protect us again?”
Iblis looked at Senator Palmer curiously, as did the others in the UN Assembly. “Yes, Senator… Palmer? Isn’t it? Well to answer your question the first time was merely a show of force. An effort to show the invaders what awaits them once humanity joins with me, and follows me. ”
Palmer looked at Iblis stunned. “How did you know my name? I never told you. And no one else had the opportunity to tell you either. “
"You would be surprised at all that I know senator. In fact I probably know more about you than even you yourself know. " Iblis said. "But that's not what we are here to discuss. You wonder what the price is for this protection don't you?"
“And at what cost does this ‘protection’ come?” Palmer asked. “What sacrifice are you asking us to make?” Iblis smiled as Palmer asked the question, knowing that it wasn’t totally unexpected.
"There's a cost for everything senator. Nothing comes without a price. "
“And is the cost of your protection our free will?” Palmer asked. “Do we give up our right to choose just to have your protection?”
"As with everything that is your choice. " Iblis said. "If you believe that to be so. "
Palmer shook his head. This being had answers for every question he had. Still he refused to give up. “We don’t even know your name. Would you be so kind as to give it to us. “
"I have been known by many names. Names on the tongues of many civilized races across the universe. " Palmer sensed that there was an evasion in Iblis's speech. He pressed further.
“You say that you have been known by many names. Would you care to give us one?” Palmer asked.
“How about we answer that?” a voice said from the doorway. Soon everyone turned to see twelve people in multicolored outfits, as well as four others. One had blonde hair and was wearing a red ball cap, jacket and jeans. One with platinum blonde hair, another with a hair color the shade of lavender, and one young Japanese man.
However it wasn’t just these four that had everyone’s attention. Rather it was the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers that everyone was focused on with the Red Ranger taking the lead. The Secretary-General greeted the Rangers and asked them what they were doing here.
“We’re here to shed some light on our ‘friend’ here. ” Red Morphin said to the UN assembly. “If I may?”
The Secretary General gave Red Morphin the micophone. If Iblis was nervous about what Jason was about to say, he had shown no signs of it. He would wait, and figure out what to say next after Jason was done.
The Lightship of the Lords of Kobol
Far beyond the boundaries of Space and Time
Q appeared in a greeting area of the Lightship wearing the white robes of a Lord of Kobol. ~ Gezz, look at all the white in the room. These people have no sense of color. But then I guess that’s to be expected when you are descended from humans. ~ Q thought. Little did he know that the Lightship’s occupants picked up his thoughts.
“At least we are not spoiled children who had our power handed to us. ” A voice said. Q turned around and saw the Lords appear around him. Their white robes mingling with the white environment. Q rolled his eyes as he saw all the white in the room.
“Geez can you ever be so more drab?” Q asked. “Can’t you bring some color into this place?”
“Our role in the universe is not to be the galaxy’s decorators. ” One Lord said. “Now state your business Q. “
Q nodded and said his peace. “My business deals with one of your own. I believe you know of him, Count Iblis?”
The Lords were silent for a second until one said “Iblis is not a member of the House of Kobol any longer. He and his followers had broken away from us millennia ago. “
“But he is still bound by many of your doctrines. ” Q stated. “Can’t you bring him in on something?”
The Lords however knew what Q was getting at however. “Is your interest in Iblis serving a greater good? Or are you just looking for a way to regain control of the ‘game’ your three Young Q have been playing?” Q tried to feign ignorance and said “My Lords, you wound me. “
“The contempt the Q have felt for humanity has been no secret. Most everyone in the universe knows of it. It is only recently that you have begun to open your mind about the potentials that humans possess, and by making the humans on Earth pieces in your three young Q’s game, you have been hindering the potential they all can reach. We shall not stand for it anymore. ” Q seemed to be outraged by what he had heard.
“Are you saying that you condone Iblis for destroying the Q’s game?” Q asked.
“No. ” another Lord said. “For in allowing the game to run freely Iblis has allowed them to be susceptible to falling under his dominion. Now that they are free from the Q’s control we must nurture the humans and protect them from any forces that seek to dominate or control those on Earth and other worlds as well. Already their potential is being realized, and in ways even we had not intended. ” The last line was made in reference to some allies of the Lords, allies they would have to confront later, but Q didn’t seem to bothered with the Lords’ internal problems. He was more concerned with getting the kids’ game back and destroying Iblis. And while the Lords weren’t going to permit the first goal from being reached the second could clearly be dealt with.
“But that does not change the fact that Iblis is still out there. Aren’t you going to do something about him?” Q asked, clearly showing his agitation. He realized that he was not going to get back his son’s game, the Lords would not allow it. But would they do anything about Iblis?
“We shall deal with him, if and when he breaks one of our doctrines. ” the Lord said. “If and when this happens he will exact a penance of our choosing. But you and the Q will need to understand this, humanity is not your toy anymore. They are living people with lives that shoot for a glorious destiny. And on our honor that destiny shall be attained, in this world or another. These are our terms. Will you accept them?”
Q bowed his head as he fully realized what consequences Iblis’s action took. There was no way to regain control of the game. No one could anymore. They could probably work with the environment of the game, but Young Q and his two friends were missing being able to move people like game pieces. Now thanks to Iblis they couldn’t do it anymore.
Still, Iblis was the main focus. Iblis had to be stopped. “I guess…I guess I have no choice. ” Q told the Lords. “Offer accepted. “
“Excellent. ” the Lords said, and Q teleported out heading home to the Continuum where he would have to break the bad news to his son and friends.
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