Conquest of Evil Part 1: The Minion Saga

Graduation Blues

With the end of his education, Billy is faced with the big question of what next? It could be his future lies not on Earth, but on another world.

Conquest of Evil Part 2: After The Minion

Minion was defeated and existence has been restored to its previous state… sort of. But the dakrness is still looming, new enemies are emerging and for the Power Rangers and their allies, the battle grows more difficult. This is a story of recovery and endurance as the heroes of Earth brace themselves ready for what the future might bring.

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Conquest of Evil Origins

Conquest of Evil Origins

The universe is filled with legendary and powerful beings. And evey one of of them has a story to tell. This is where their stories begin.

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Conquest of Evil

Evil is more than a concept. It is a living entity desiring nothing less than the domination of all existence. Throughout time and space, since the very creation of the first universe, Evil has been there, lurking in background and waiting for a moment of weakness when it could strike. Even when its forces were decimated Evil remained, seeking a way to snatch victory from defeat.

From the distant past to the far future, my fanfiction is an exploration of this universe where the unwritten future of another universe is as important as the unrecorded past of the mainstream reality. For the villains a single goal: the conquest of the planet Earth and with it, the key to ultimate power. For the Rangers a responsibility that stretches beyond the boundaries of time and space: to protect their world and vanquish evil wherever it appears.

My fanfiction has always circled around Conquest of Evil or COE as I often call it. COE is a Multiversal series covering a larger area than the original show. A series where cross-dimensional, cross-time and parallel universes are possible if rarely seen; a reality where a throwaway monster can return as a near god and bring existence to its knees.

Some people claim that every story should have a happy ending. With COE the question should be is evil being conquered or doing the conquering? It’s a cross between the Marvel and DC multiverse with hints of the Saban universe thrown in for good measure. It’s a place where you can walk on the Moon without a space suit. It’s a place the characters I write call home.

Part One: The Age Of Legend
How did it all start? Where did the war between good and evil begin? How did an existence at the point of oblivion pass into the creation of a new reality, a reborn creator and the start of a new war? Just how was the universe formed, what role did the Power play and what of those that tried to tame it?
The Age of Legend is the period during which all those questions are answered as existence emerged from the darkness and begins anew.

The End

Before something new can begin, the old must make way. Behold the end of everything.

Updated Beginning Anew Updated
Rewritten: 2nd June 2022

After the ending, comes a new beginning.

Birth of Darkness

In the early days following the appearance of The One, the struggle was between creation and the void. But when The One sought to create servants to explore his work, he chose to grant them the power to do most of the things that he could do and gifted them parts of himself so that they could evolve into something more than just tools. Unfortunately The One was not as cautious as he should have been when sharing parts of his personality and as a result… The Dark One emerged, believing himself superior to all others including his father and determined to claim The One’s power. The first war between Good and Evil has started, and before it ends The One will have to pay a heavy price.

Updated Birth of the Cosmic Gods Updated
Rewritten: 28th June 2022

Released from his former role as the Avatar of Light, Shadow begins his new role as the bringer of balance to the cosmos. For it seems that while the universe can tolerate Good and evil, it has place from lasting peace. Shadow’s answer: to create a new race of beings free to decide what they believe in, knowing that when those ideas clash the struggle for supremacy will bring the struggle needed for the universe to thrive. And as the Cosmic Gods assume their positions of power, so the remnants of The Dark One’s army appoint themselves as the Dark Gods, believing themselves to be the true deities.

Updated Shift in Power Updated
Rewritten: 28th June 2022

The surviving Dark Gods make a pact that will see the forces of Evil share power while the Dark Throne stands empty

Updated Change in the Celestial Guard Updated
Rewritten: 28th June 2022

The Celestials prepare the realm of mortals for habitation as they themselves get ready to depart.

New Chapter Origins: The Breaking New Chapter
Added: 30th June 2022

At the dawning of the Fifth Age, reality shatters, new universes appear and existence grows larger

Genesis of the Time Lords

The story of an old man who become a child and led to the emergence of one of the most politically powerful races in the universe. This is the tale of the rise of Gallifrey.

Age of Heroes
When the war between Zordon of Eltar and Rita Repulsa ended, it promised a new era of peace as the forces of darkness raced to fill the void left by one of their most skilled commanders. And while Zordon's forces could claim the victory, they did so with the knowledge that their noble leader would no longer be amongst them in battle. The cosmos entered a period of unease as both sides worked to recover from their losses. Who could step up and take the place of Rita Repulsa; would such a being be allowed the opportunity to prove his worth? And without Zordon, who would take up te challenge of leading the forces of light?
In the meantime the Earth has been revealed as a world of interest to the cosmos at large. How will the small planet cope when it suddenly finds itself the prize for every villain wanting to prove their worth and those willing to do anything to deny the dark forces their moment of triumph? Perhaps the Earth will need to look to its own heroes, but for every hero that emerges, there is another threat looming.

Day of the Dumpster

When Rita is released Zordon seeks out the one force capable of stopping her: teenagers with attitude.

What’s Tomato You?

Lord Zedd decides to use Billy’s science experiment as a monster.

Graduation Blues

With the end of his education, Billy is faced with the big question of what next? It could be his future lies not on Earth, but on another world.

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Origins: The Breaking

Disclaimer: I do not own the Power Rangers, they belong to their respective copyright owners and are used here without permission. No money is being made from this fic.
Authors Note: This is an alternate universe with an alternate time line.

The Breaking

Temporal Location: The Fifth Age of Existence: The Dawn of Time
Universe: Zero / The Multiverse
Reality: Prime.

The Fifth Age of Existence had arrived. During the first four ages, the universe had been created, shaped and populated thanks to the work of The One and the Celestials he had created to fine tune his work. Now with The One’s domain at the highest point of existence, reality descended through the many planes and dimensions to the very depths where lurked the prison of The Dark One. And at the central point between those two extremes there was the Mortal Realm, the physical universe where the majority of its populace would live and struggle, and hopefully thrive.

And through then there was the Morphin Grid, a flowing river of energy that pooled around the universe, entering it from The One’s dimension before tearing through every plane, realm and dimension, reaching all points in between before returning to its source through The Dark One’s prison. It was the Power that allowed for change and growth, and new life. The Power sustained the universe and everything within its boundaries. But the Morphin Grid had existed before the universe had formed and extended far far beyond its boundaries… even when the unexpected happened.

The Celestials had handpicked a number of races to tame the Mortal Realm, turning it into a place where mortals could survive. It had been their final act before they departed to examine their previous would and improve upon it on their way back to The One. Nobody could say for certain which race was responsible for the sequence of events that led to the fracturing of reality – for there were several races that at that time had undertaken dangerous experiments capable of doing so-, but in an instant the first universe had split to become the hub around which countless universes now revolved.

The multiverse expanded in all directions, creating countless new domains, although only the original universe contained The One’s dominion and The Dark One’s prison. The cosmos had been copied many times over, each universe united by the Morphin Grid and nurtured by the Power. But despite the many similarities, the duplicates were not exact… each had its own characteristics that set them apart from the Prime Reality and from each other. Those closest to the original universe had taken on more of its features, but as they spread further out, so the differences increased.

Sensing the change and the sudden risk to their creation, the Celestials were forced to step in, reshaping the multiverse to avert the risk of competing realities colliding. The erected walls of nothingness to act as a barrier between realities, isolating them from each other. Although nothing they did could prevent the Power from reaching them. The Morphin Grid extended not only through the Prime Reality, but throughout the whole of existence.

And so with the countless realities secured, the Celesitals redirected their efforts to maintaining the newly formed multiverse, fixing problems and erasing those realities that deviated too much from their grand design. And from his throne high above the Prime Reality, The One looked on and pondered where this unexpected turn of events would lead.

End of Part

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Interlude: Re-enter… The Green Ranger

Disclaimer: I do not own the Power Rangers; they belong to their respective copyright owners and are used here without permission. No money is being made from this fic.

Authors Note: This is an alternate universe from the television show with an alternate timeline.

Interlude: Re-enter… The Green Dragon

Earth, Variant Reality M000-1

“We did it Zeddy!” Rita cried.

“Silence!” Zedd was not in a good mood and spun sharply to confront Mistress Repugna. “What were you thinking by interfering, do you have any idea what could have happened?”

“What does it matter, you made your little bet, gave your little oath and thanks to my intervention, we won.”

“The point is that you could have destroyed us all,” Zedd snapped. “That oath contains powerful magic.”

“Relax Zedd. So I cheated, we didn’t get caught.”

“Those Rangers are going to try and retrieve their powers,” Zedd mused, ignoring the woman. “Perhaps we should make it easier for them. Goldar, take the Zeo Crystal back to the quarry and wait for those annoying teenagers to show up. When they do use the Putties or Tengas to capture them. Rito, go with him and make sure you don’t mess it up. Logran will be nearby, just in case.”

“Yes Lord Zedd,” Goldar growled.

“Sure thing Ed,” Rito added.

“And you,” Zedd snarled, his finger pointed at Monastra. “Stay out of the way or I’ll put you in a Dumpster.”

“Sure Zedd, whatever,” Monastra replied, temporarily appearing as a blond haired, blue eyed, bubblegum blowing teenager. When the villain was out of earshot, she added: “Try putting me in a Dumpster when I turn your magic off, grate face.”

“Hold still Tommy, I’m almost done,” Alpha announced as he dragged the pen-shaped device across one of the many cuts Tommy had gained during his battle.

The shoulder he had damaged had been found to be clear from infection and had sealed relatively quickly until Zordon’s guidance. The flesh would hurt for a few days to come, but the bones and muscles had regenerated nicely. Still, the power the dark Ranger had shown in creating that blast was frightening.

“I lost,” he repeated for the fifth time since he had been back at the Command Center, as if saying the words would somehow make it seem better.

“Yes Tommy,” Zordon answered. “I am afraid that although Logran’s tactics were underhanded, he remained within the rules you had agreed on with Zedd. There is nothing we can do about the decision.”

“Man, we need to get the Zeo Crystals and the Zords back,” Tommy said. When they arrived back at the Power Chamber, they had seen that the Zords had been teleported away.

“We need to find some different powers,” Rocky said.

“How about our old powers?” Adam asked.

“Ai-yi-yi-yi-yi! Adam, you must never use those morphers again,” Alpha warned. “The power could destroy you.”

“It’s okay Alpha, calm down,” Tanya said reassuringly. “Adam was only asking.”

“Hey I know, what about the Green Ranger powers?” Tommy asked. “They were never destroyed with the Thunderzords.”

“No,” Billy agreed, “but they were drained by Zedd. The Green Ranger is powerless.”

“His clone wasn’t,” Rocky muttered.

“Yes Rocky, you are correct,” Zordon boomed, gaining the attention of the Command Center’s occupants. “The clone of the Green Ranger never had his powers drained since he is a magical construct and to do so would have ended his existence. With a Power Coin in his possession, they would be intact.”

“Yeah, but the clone is in the past,” Kat remarked, remembering the stories Tommy had told her, and those not so nice versions that Rita and Zedd had shared.

“I believe we can still contact him for help,” Zordon stated. “Alpha, access your tertiary auxiliary memory and recall the wand from that location.”

“Zordon?” Billy asked, a suspicion starting to form.

“I am sorry to say I misled you Rangers,” Zordon boomed. “After the Green Ranger was left in the past, I considered destroying the Wizard of Deception’s wand. However, the wand proved difficult to destroy and I feared we would need a method of time travel in the future, so I had Alpha secrete the wand deep inside the Morphin Grid and ordered him to hide the location within his memory. Only Alpha has the knowledge and means to retrieve it.”

“You lied to us,” Rocky accused.

“I am afraid I did,” Zordon acknowledged. “However, I am certain that my actions were for the best. By keeping the existence of the wand secret, I avoided the temptation to use it. By not destroying it, we have the means to contact the clone.”

“Tom,” Tommy said. “His name is Tom.”

“I apologise Tommy,” Zordon said.

“So how do we open this portal to Colonial Angel Grove?” Tanya asked.

“The wand will only work for Tommy, due to his experience with the Wizard of Deception,” Zordon said. “You must take the wand to the Colonial Museum and use it to open a portal to the past. Hopefully Tom will agree to aid us.”

“I’ll go now,” Tommy said. He vanished in a column of white.

“Zordon, how can the clone have his powers?” Adam asked. “Tommy told us the Green Ranger powers were lost fighting Lord Zedd.”

Kat and Billy exchanged an awkward look. Luckily Tanya interrupted.

“Tommy said the clone used the powers before,” she pointed out.

“Yes, but I thought those powers came from the Wizard’s wand,” Adam answered.

“When Rita and Zedd created the clone, the Wizard used Tommy’s hair as a genetic blueprint and managed to duplicate his residual link to the Green Morphin energies. He then used a spell to create a coin with similar properties to Tommy’s and energised it using the magic of his wand; he later used the same means to empower the Dragon Zord. But I believe the conduits needed to tap the Green Ranger powers, which had been damaged in Tommy, were normalised within the clone.”

“So the clone, Tom, can still morph?” Adam asked.

“I’m not sure.” Billy admitted. “You see, the clone was magical in nature, not genetic. So when the Wizard created him he used Rita’s memory of the Evil Green Ranger as the design and Rita would not have remembered him having the weakness from the candle at that time. Unfortunately since the coin and the clone are magical constructs, I have no way to ascertain their ability to transform him into the Green Ranger again; from Tommy’s description when he transformed back, the coin the Wizard of Deception created just vanished. I don’t know if he could morph again.”

“If he had a power coin he could,” Alpha stated.

Tommy turned pale as his hand sank into his pants’ pocket and pulled out his old power coin. Unmistakably that of the Dragonzord.

“So if we gave Tom that coin,” Jason said trying to reconcile what he had learnt. The natural leader that he was, it was difficult for him not to just take charge.

“He should be able to morph,” Billy answered. “And since the coin is not only connected to the Morphin Grid, but also contains some of Tommy’s stolen energy, he should be powerful enough. If he agrees.”

“In the meantime we need a plan,” Adam said, keen to change the subject. “Maybe we could ask Tom to battle Logran. Now we know how he fights, Tom could win.”

“Perhaps,” Billy agreed, “but I think Zedd wants us to attack outright.”

“How do you know that?” Tanya asked.

“Because he’s placed everything we lost in plain view in the quarry, on Earth.”

“So if we could get them back, we can be Rangers again, right?” Kat asked.

“That is correct Katherine,” Zordon boomed. “Alpha, retrieve the storage trunk.”

Alpha moved to comply, dragging a large trunk with him. There he opened it revealing the contents.

“Wow,” Rocky remarked pulling out a set of weapons similar to those they used as Rangers.

“Our original Power Weapons,” Billy gasped, recalling the weapons they had handed over when Commander Crayfish and his mutants proved too powerful. Zordon had replaced their weapons with similar yet more powerful copies. “You kept them?”

“I was afraid that one day you would need them again,” Zordon admitted.

Billy pulled them from their box and as they touched his unpowered hands, the weapons changed, becoming simpler and lighter.

“On some planets, Rangers are allowed to carry their weapons while unmorphed,” Zordon explained. “These Power Weapons have been endowed with the ability to blend in with an unmorphed team.”

“Hey Billy, remember these?” Jason asked, pulling out the weapons they had retrieved for use against the Super Putties.

“Affirmative,” Billy grinned. “We never named them though. Trini said they should be called the Power Slingers, but I thought Thunder Slingers suited them better. Don’t you throw anything away Zordon?”

“What’s this?” Rocky asked, holding up a piece of rope.

“I remember that,” Jason said. “Goldar used it to tie Kat, Zack and me to a chair.”

“Correct,” Zordon said. “The rope generates a powerful electronic force field that prevents those trapped by it from morphing and teleporting.”

“We were lucky to get away,” Jason told them.

“Will it still work?” Kat asked.

“Alpha, hand me that scanner,” Billy instructed. Alpha did as he was told and Billy passed the device over the top of the rope. “Affirmative, the rope has retained all its properties,” he said.

“So we have a magic rope, the Thunder Slingers and unpowered weapons,” Adam said. “Anything else?”

“Yes,” Tommy said, sounding pleased. He pulled out a pink ribbon. “Kat used this against the Bloom of Doom.”

“Let me see that,” Alpha said, taking the ribbon from the Ranger. He turned away and then handed Kat a new device. “I modified it to create the Pterodactyl Thunder Whip.”

“And this,” Billy said, pulling a large rifle from the trunk before closing the lid, “is the Mega-Heater I developed against Turbanshell.”

“It’s not much,” Adam said.

“But it’s all we have,” Tanya added. “We’ll work with what we have, assuming Tommy can convince Tom.”

Angel Grove
Colonial Times

“I don’t have a choice, do I?” Tom asked.

When he had been left in the past, he had known that one-day the Rangers would seek him out again. That didn’t mean he had to like it. It wasn’t fair of them to expect him to abandon his new life, his family, to save a world where he didn’t belong. It had taken months for the colonists to accept Tom as one of them, and that had been on the grounds that he didn’t use magic. In such a superstitious place, the reappearance of a white clothed stranger and disappearance of a local man would cause a stir. If Tom agreed to this, then the chances were that the life he had known for the past few years would be gone forever.

“We need you,” Tommy said, giving the clone a sympathetic smile.

Had he had his way, Tommy would have ensured the wand was destroyed. Nobody deserved to have his or her lives disrupted in this way. He could see that Tom was torn between the life he loved and the friends he barely knew. At the end of the day though he was a Ranger and that meant he had to do what was right, not what he wanted.

“On one condition,” Tom said after some thought.

“Name it,” Tommy said.

“If I succeed, I keep the wand,” Tom told him. “No offence, but I have a life, although it looks like I won’t be able to return here again. Still, I can’t have you guys ruining it every time Zedd strips you of your power coins. I’m not a Ranger anymore!”

“I’m really sorry man, if we succeed, I promise I’ll make Zordon destroy it.”

“Not good enough,” Tom snarled his anger obvious. “I’m not a part of your lives anymore. You shouldn’t even be asking me this. If I succeed, I want the wand, so I can ensure it is never used again.”

“I don’t think Zordon would agree.”

Tom’s face was hard when he answered. “Zordon doesn’t have a choice. I can’t stay here anymore. The wand will allow me to find a new time where I won’t upset the balance. And you are the White Ranger, so you decide.”

Tommy nodded reluctantly. “Okay, we’ll do it,” he said finally. He didn’t have a choice.

The two Rangers clasped forearms in agreement, and then Tommy handed the wand to Tom and they both vanished.

“Master, the Rangers are not attacking,” Goldar reported.

“Oh my,” Finster said. “Perhaps they found some new powers.”

“No,” Zedd said firmly. “They will try and recover their powers first. Perhaps those teenagers lack the proper incentive. Logran, attack the city!”

“Attack the city? You forget who you are talking to, Lord Zedd,” Logran sneered. "I’m not just some monster you can order around. I am so much more." He paused, contemplating what he wanted. Hurting Tommy had been fun. It was something he wanted to do again. "On second thoughts… perhaps a little exercise will keep me in shape for Mistress Repugna."

He vanished, taking a collection of Monastra’s clay creatures with him.

Command Center

“So we’re ready then,” Tommy said at last.

There had been a great deal of argument between Tom and Zordon when the two youths had returned. Zordon had argued fiercely that if Tom kept the wand he would be tempted to use it. Tom had responded by pointing out that Zordon was no better and that since the Rangers needed his help, Zordon would need to agree to his terms.

“I’ll handle this Logran and see if I can draw Rito and Goldar into battle,” Tom said. The Rangers had updated him on the changes in the villains’ camp. “You guys will have to handle the Putties and Tengas though.”

“We’ll get our powers back and then come and help you,” Tommy said.

“Zordon, what happens if Tom needs the Zords?” Kat asked as Tom clipped the last of the original Power weapons to his body, aware that although lacking power, they would provide an additional arsenal.

Trini’s daggers were strapped to his ankles, Jason’s sword sheathed at his right hip and the less powerful Dragon Dagger was secured on his left hip; Kat’s bow and Billy’s spears were secured to his back. Zack’s axe was in his hand as he contemplated whether or not to take it. Unpowered, the weapons lacked their gestalt form and the axe couldn’t be transformed into the Cosmic Cannon. In the end he placed it with the bow and spears.

“Dragonzord should answer to your call,” Zordon boomed. “However, without the other Dino Zords, Dragonzord may be overwhelmed. You will have to hold out until the others can reach you.”

“I understand Zordon,” Tom said. “Are you sure I can access these weapons when morphed?”

“Affirmative,” Billy answered. “Although I doubt they will be of use to you.”

“Well, I guess it’s time.”

“Then go, and may the Power protect you.”

Tom shook his head in disbelief. “I never thought I would say this again.” He smiled as he pulled out his power coin and inserted it into his morpher. “It’s Morphin Time – Dragonzord!” He teleported away in a column of green.

The unpowered Rangers followed moments later on their own mission. Jason, Adam and Rocky each carried a pair of Thunder Slingers, a third was strapped to their ankles; Tanya wrapped the rope around her fist while Kat had the whip concealed somewhere on her person. Billy had the Mega-Heater clasped firmly in his hands leaving only Tommy without a weapon.

“What about you Tommy?” Kat asked.

“As if you have to ask,” Billy snorted, well aware of what their glory hog leader was up to. “Six Rangers bonded in mind and purpose. Right Tommy?”

“Billy is correct,” Zordon boomed. “The Sword of Power will prove useful.”

“Let’s do it,” Tommy smiled.

Moving clockwise from closest to Zordon, the teens stood in the circle: Tommy, Billy, Rocky, Tanya, Kat, Adam; they held their right hands in toward their shoulders.

“Sword… of Power!” they called as one.

They put their right hands together in the centre of the circle, causing Ranger-coloured energy to flow down their arms, up Tommy’s arm as red energy, and form the Sword of Power in Tommy’s left hand with a swirl of red energy.

“It’s still as beautiful as I remember it,” Tommy said, looking over the strange blade. “Just think, last time I held this I was under a spell and practically handed it to Zedd.”

“It wasn’t your fault,” Kat told him, placing a hand on his shoulder.

“You must hurry Rangers,” Zordon reminded them.

In five columns and a small sphere of light, they were gone.

Upon arriving in Angel Grove, Logran had shifted into his Ranger form, a rather twisted interpretation of the Dragon Ranger’s uniform and set off on his blazing path of destruction. The clay creatures he had taken were wrecking their own havoc while acting as his bodyguards. They were gargoyles, shaped by Mistress Repugna to resemble those found on some buildings. People ran as he marched down the streets towards the City Hall. Unlike most villains, Logran was going to make his point right at the heart of Angel Grove.

A flash of green knocked him aside, forcing him to roll aside. His gargoyles were already moving in to protect him as the green object shot passed three more times, causing them to spark. Logran’s eyes narrowed.

“Now what do we have here?” he demanded, throwing shurikens at anything that moved.

“A little blast from the past,” Tom replied, slowing to a stop so the light no longer hid him.

“Tommy,” Logran said. His amusement was evident. “Back in the green after all this time. It was always my favourite form. And so you’re here for round two are you? I won’t stop before I kill you this time.”

The Green Ranger cocked his head to one side, trying to make sense of what Logran had said, but failing. The Dragon Dagger was clasped firmly in his right hand, his left hand was behind his back. His head moved slowly, watching both the gargoyles and Logran for signs of movement.

In his mind Tom was sizing up his opposition. Logran had chosen three very different gargoyles. The first and probably the most dangerous towered over the Green Ranger by a foot, had a stone grey body with huge muscles, powerful demonic wings and sharp teeth. He was made for power, Tom could tell.

The second one was smaller and resembled a schoolboy rather than a killer. Still any illusions Tom held about this creature were put aside when he noticed the claws on the end of its fingers. It had a smooth green skin, a thin tail and small wings.

And the last one was a dog. There was no other way to put it. Grey skinned, it stood on four legs and had large snapping jaws. It had a long powerful looking tail that thrashed from side to side.

With little else to do, Tom attacked, hoping that Logran would prefer to see his pets take care of the problem before involving himself. He charged at the gargoyles, avoiding the dog as it charged at him. He was atop the small one before it could react, using Tommy’s dagger to pin its tail to the tarmac. He drew Jason’s sword for a swift kill when the larger gargoyle connected with a punch.

Tom flew backwards, threw the window of a delivery van and out the other side, coming to rest in the security shutter of a small shop. The small gargoyle was free and stalking towards him. He saw it leap and catch the wind on its wings before gliding towards him, talons extended to shred him to ribbons. He rolled, bringing Zack’s axe to a ready position. He waited until the gargoyle was in reach and then swung the axe.

The blade tore through the clay skin, unleashing a spray of toxic material that seeped into the Green Ranger’s uniform. The Dragon Shield glowed brightly as it worked to counter the assault. Tom threw both the axe and sword to the ground as the corrosive chemicals caused the weapons to melt. The dagger he had used earlier to pin the gargoyle’s tail in place had dissolved into nothing.

Surprisingly, the small gargoyle was still coming; it’s head threatening to rip all the way from its neck as it held on by a slender piece of stony flesh.

“Dragon Dagger!” he called, moving the weapon through a series of motions intended to activate its power. A beam of green light shot from the tip of the weapon, and he wielded it with deadly accuracy as the beam sliced through what was left of the creature’s neck.


The street exploded under the Green Ranger’s feet, glass shattering from the ear splitting wail. The dog had moved in on him while Tom had been distracted and had unleashed on of its many weapons, a paralysing scream every bit as destructive as the club like tail that now pummelled Tom.

Sparks flew as powerful jaws tried to breach the protective fabric of his suit, the pressure sufficient to cause Tom’s bones to pop. Tom reached down and drew Trini’s daggers, using them to lever the dog’s mouth open. Another scream was his reward, this time at close range and powerful enough to crack a part of Tom’s helmet. Tom kicked the dog away and scrambled back to his feet. He tried to make some space between him and the clay mutt, but the dog’s tail was long and smacked into his damaged leg.

Tom fell forward, rolling onto his back out of instinct; there was no way to protect himself if he couldn’t see his opponent coming. The dog was already charging him. It leapt, he raised his feet and managed to kick it away, but the dog landed on its feet and charged in for a second attempt. Tom placed Billy’s spears so that the points met over his chest. Kimberly’s bow was drawn ready; the Dragon Dagger was primed as an arrow.

The dog landed, its chest firmly embedded on the spears as Tom released the Dragon Dagger. The blade ripped down the gargoyle’s throat and out the other end, destroying the beast but also covering Tom with more of the corrosive chemicals. This time though the liquid found its way through his damaged uniform. Tom however didn’t have time to thank about that or about the weapons that had been destroyed by the spray or the Dragon Dagger now safely back in his grip. The largest gargoyle was back and mad.

They crept as near to the podium where their power coins had been placed as they dared to. Rita and Zedd had set Tengas and Putties in place, no doubt expecting the Rangers to charge in without a plan and become trapped by the overwhelming odds. They had spotted Rita and Zedd earlier, hiding in the background ready to strike them at the last moment. But something had happened, and angry exchange had taken place and the two villains had vanished along with Goldar and Rito. The Rangers took that as their signal and closed in.

Against the Putties the Rangers showed no mercy, blasting them with the Thunder Slingers and Billy’s Mega Heater. The clay foot soldiers were numerous, but relatively easy to break. Tanya and Adam used their fighting skills to hit the Z-Putties in the right place.

Kat was using her whip to trip Tengas as the attacked. Since they were living creatures, the Rangers tried to keep the bird creatures alive if a little banged up. Behind her Rocky had abandoned his Thunder Slinger in favour of his feet as he lured the Tengas in.

Tommy held the Sword of Power at the ready, using its powers to trap anything that moved in a bubble of orange energy. He kicked a Z-Putty in the chest and then used the hilt of his sword to knock a Tenga unconscious. He was grateful that although powerless they had managed to retrieve the sword.

Billy turned constantly, preventing anything from getting too near as he maintained fire. The number of Putties had been cut and the Rangers were making progress, but it was becoming clear that time was running out. Once Rita and Zedd realised what was going on, they would return.

“Kat, the crystal,” he shouted, noticing that the Pink Ranger was the closest to the podium.

The Pink Ranger nodded in reply and after breaking off her attack, ran for the podium. She came to an abrupt halt though when Rita’s latest monster, Mistress Repugna appeared, energy shooting from her fingertips.

“Such rude children you are,” she stated. “Trying to steal from Empress Rita and Lord Zedd isn’t polite. Prepare for a tongue lashing.”

Fire burst from her mouth, taking on the shape of a forked tongue that whipped back and forth across the Rangers chests. Kat was knocked back into the throng of foot soldiers.

“Perhaps the trap they laid was too simplistic for you. Putties!”

A red Putty appeared, its body covered with spikes and two powerful blades on its arms. It made a noise similar to a snarl and charged at the powerless humans while the monster turned her attention on Kat and Tanya.

Billy tried to use the Mega-Heater, but a slash from the Putty cleaved it in half. He rolled away before a second blow could hurt him while Adam and Rocky distracted it with kicks and Tommy traded sword blows. The Putty while not skilled in fighting, was resistant to their attacks. It could change shape to avoid any potentially dangerous shots and could retract or elongate its natural weapons.

Rocky and Adam drew their Thunder Slingers, pelting the Putty with several shots before realising they were having little effect. When it returned fire, using its spikes as darts, the two Rangers abandoned their action and retreated.

Mistress Repugna was ruthless in combat. The combination of her fire breath and energy shooting nails was bad enough, but combined with the sceptre, those powers were of little importance. Especially since she was currently shifting said sceptre between its usual form and a long slender sword.

Kat used her whip to catch the woman’s ankle while Tanya attacked with a series of sharp kicks, which were blocked easily. A downward slash from the sword and Kat’s whip was broken.

“Transform!” the monster cried.

The red Putty obeyed and turned into a spinning ball composed of sharp edges.

“Look out!” Tommy warned as the ball chased after the Rangers.

Kat tried to attack Mistress Repugna again, but found herself knocked into the podium but a sharp backhand. She shook her head to clear her thoughts as her palm closed around something familiar. The Zeo Crystal. As soon as she touched it, the crystal and the Zords were teleported away by Zordon, leaving the Zeonisers and Golden Power Staff.

“Zeo Ranger I – Pink!” she cried, tossing Tanya her transformation device.

Soon the Rangers had their Zeonisers back and the fight was on again. The ball like Putty was still proving dangerous though as it tore into them and they had to use all their abilities to avoid it.

The monster towered over Kat as she had once again knocked the Pink Ranger down. She drove the sword forward, but Kat was gone, teleporting to safety. She pulled her blade back only to be met by Tommy; Sword of Power gripped firmly in his hands.

The two battled back and forth, Painforte slipping in the occasional blast of energy that kept Tommy off balance. He in turn used the sword’s capabilities to throw her off balance. She still had the upper hand.

The ball spun back towards Rocky, who had transformed into his Ranger uniform in the hopes of finding better protection. The blades however cut into the fabric and while not deep enough to reach his skin, it caused him to spark violently.

“Guys, I have an idea,” Adam called. He told them the plan quickly, using their internal communications.

The others nodded quickly in agreement as first Adam and then Billy explained why the plan would succeed, after which the genius teleported back to the Power Chamber.

“Hey, over here,” Rocky shouted, drawing the ball in his direction before teleporting around to the far side of Kat.

Together the Rangers kept the ball chasing after them, slowly positioning themselves in the right place for their plan to work. Meanwhile Tanya had moved closer to where Tommy and the monster were fighting. She waited for the right moment and then attacked.

Mistress Repugna took a while to realise what had happened. The Yellow Ranger had come from behind and had slipped a piece of rope around her, distracting her just long enough for Tommy to trap her in a bubble. She didn’t worry though because she could order the ball to help her. Or at least that was what she thought until she noticed the ball was not responding the rope had blocked her ability to control it mentally.

There was an anguished scream as the Rangers continued to draw the ball into a series of wild attacks. Finally Tommy signalled and the others demorphed and vanished from sight, leaving Tommy as the only target.

“NO!” the monster cried, now aware of what the Rangers were up to.

It was too late. Tommy teleported, but the ball kept coming, ramming and tearing its way through the bubble… and its contents were torn to pieces.

But the Rangers did not celebrate. They still had to stop Logran.

The gargoyle flew ever higher as Tom’s struggles diminished. The chemical, whatever it was, had seeped into his skin and had left him feeling weak and nauseous. He couldn’t remember any monsters that naturally included such chemicals and assumed someone had put it there deliberately. Logran’s idea of a prank no doubt.

He gripped the Dragon Dagger hard as the beast started to dive towards the rooftops, dragging him over the roofs as it did so. With his Power enhanced uniform the buildings suffered more than he did, but any debris that found a way into the rips in his suit, burnt against his suddenly sensitive skin.

He waited, biding his time until the beast was close to the ground. Then he used the dagger to rip at its wing, careful not to inhale the noxious chemicals that sprayed out. He was having trouble focussing on what he was doing and flailed blindly in the hopes of connecting with a target.

The beast howled in pain, dropping its prey to the ground. Tom rolled away, scared that the gargoyle might land on him. He scrambled along the street; still unable to see exactly where he was going. It was getting difficult to breathe.

The gargoyle had recovered and despite its useless wing, it was stalking after the Green Ranger. It lifted Tom into the air and after wrapping its arms around him, squeezed, driving the air out of the boy’s lungs and preventing him from getting a fresh breath.

Tom kicked out, hoping to connect with something that would cause pain. Of course as a golem-based monster, the gargoyle lacked the most natural target for the Green Ranger’s knee. Because giving a golem-type warrior a useless but energy-depleting organ made no sense strategically. Every special body part or organ came with a price. It took extra energy to maintain. As such, that weakness was removed.

Eventually his kicking found a pressure point where he could at least throw the beast off balance. By doing so he prevented it from tightening its grip on his body. His eyesight was no longer blurred. Instead everything seemed too bright, too real.

The gargoyle growled after one particularly nasty kick and threw Tom aside. The Green Ranger bounced painfully of the bonnet of a station wagon and onto the sidewalk. The paving cracked on impact. In retaliation, Tom threw a hubcap at the oncoming beast, subconscious pouring a little of his energy into the object to accelerate its flight. It sliced through the creature’s arm, severing the limb.

Using the opportunity, Tom retreated once more, this time on the lookout for something that might aid him. He found it when he approached Nigel’s Discount Gas and Flower Store. Normally the Rangers would not condone the public damage Tom had in mind. But he was alone, hurt and possibly getting weaker by the second – he couldn’t tell anymore since he had lost sensation in his body below the neck.

Using a Blade Blaster to cut a hole in the street, he covered it with a large truck. He then soaked the area in gasoline, after warning the police and fire officers to evacuate the area. Only one officer had protested since the others saw the gargoyle as the bigger threat.

He saw it moving up the street towards him, stalking its prey and crushing anything in its path. Tom wished it would hurry. He didn’t know what was wrong with him, but he did recognise there was a good chance he would not survive the encounter should he pass out.

The gargoyle had seen him and charged forward. It leapt at him and he dodged, drawing his Blade Blaster ready. The gargoyle landed, its weight forcing the truck into the hole and the pool of gasoline. Tom fired a single shot and the fuel exploded, baking the creature in the intense heat. Tom fired continuously, chipping away at the now brittle monster until he hit the right place. The gargoyle crumbled.

Tom saw his work pay off as the gargoyle disintegrated, the toxic foam from its dying body extinguishing the flames that had taken its life. The street would need replacing and the surrounding buildings would be a mess, but nobody was hurt and the damage was minimal. He should have been pleased.

Pain caused him to keel over as the chemical he had absorbed into his body started to overcome his immune system. Even with the Power to enhance it he was fading fast. Remaining morphed was adding a further drain on his powers. He needed to enter standby mode to heal such extensive wounds.

“So, you survived my little pets did you Tommy?” Logran asked.

Tom turned towards the voice, only to be greeted by the evil Ranger’s fist. Logran seized the advantage and attacked his green opponent.

“What’s the matter Tommy, feeling a little ill?” he asked. “Those fumes you breathed, the chemical that burnt into your skin… it’s poison. Not fatal, but I promise you’ll be lucky if you survive the next hour. And when I’m done beating you to death, the others will still be powerless.”

“Just one little problem with… that,” Tom gasped as the grip tightend: “I’m…. not…. Tommy!”

“What?” Logran asked. That statement confused him. It had to be Tommy. Who else could wear the Green Ranger’s costume? “Who are you then?”

“Just … a…. clone,” Tom gasped. Breathing was becoming increasing difficult.

Logran let out a cry of anguish, realising he’d been distracted from his task. He should have been stopping the other Rangers from stealing their powers back. That meant they could have their powers again and that the whole battle against Tommy had been for nothing.

“No, I will destroy Angel Grove,” he hissed defiantly. “Goldar, Rito, attack!”

The giant sized aliens attacked, tearing through the buildings already damaged by Logran and his gargoyles.

“No…. can’t let you,” Tom managed. “Dragonzord, arise.”

A beam of green light shot into the air from Tom’s morpher, summoning forth the power of his Zord. Deep inside the Morphin Grid the Dragon heard his call and answered, once again infusing the cold metal shell with the spirit of the Dragon. Magic and machinery merged as the Dragonzord was activated one more time.

Tom’s flute sounded over Angel Grove as the musically coded commands were sent to his machine. And the Dragonzord emerged, the physical manifestation of the Green Dragon on Earth. Tom raised his hand in the direction of his Zord and teleported, knowing he would be unable to control the fight from outside. On this occasion he had to take manual control.

Dragonzord stomped towards Rito and Goldar; ready to punish them for the destruction they had caused.

“Tommy,” Goldar growled in greeting. “I never knew you had it in you.”

“I’m … not … Tommy,” Tom stated, his voice barely recognisable because he was breathing so hard.

The Zord turned, scraping its tail across Rito’s chest. Goldar caught the drill end as it started to spin, sparks flying from his armour. Tom moved the controls and the Zord fired its finger rockets, blasting Goldar to the ground. The Zord stumbled as it was hit from behind. Tom made it turn to reveal Scorpina in her mutant scorpion form, her tail wrapped around the Zord’s neck.

Goldar and Rito combined their fire; Dragonzord gave an electronic groan as it fell to the ground.

“Soon as we get there guys, call on the Megazords,” Tommy instructed.

They were in mid-teleport, so he never saw their nods, although he guessed correctly that they had heard him.

“Super Zeo Megazord power!”

Once complete the Megazord stood while Goldar, Rito and Scorpina tried to knock it down. Their attacks bounced away harmlessly. When it finally moved, its powerful fist almost crushed Rito with a single punch.

“This isn’t fair,” Goldar could be heard protesting.

“Then I’ll even the odds,” Logran told the golden monkey.

In a flash of black the he teleported aboard the Megazord, attacking the Rangers and throwing them from the cockpit. Rocky grabbed the invader before he could assume control of the battle machine and abandoned the Zords, knowing they would be sent back to its hiding place.

“So we’re back to where we were before,” Logran said casually. “Perhaps another contest with greater stakes. You win; I’ll give you Zedd’s prisoner. If you lose, I get possession of your powers and your lives.”

“How can we trust you?” Tommy asked, suspicion once again coming to the front of his emotions.

“You don’t have a choice,” Logran answered. “But I will offer you the same oath that Zedd gave you earlier.”

“Negative,” Billy interrupted as he teleported on the scene. “Swear an oath on the honour of Lord Zedd’s father that you will abide by these terms regardless of the outcome and that no harm will come to any Ranger during the battle unless they are fighting.”

“Very well,” Logran said and he repeated the oath Billy had chosen. “We will return to the quarry.”

“The battle starts now?” Billy asked.

“Yes,” Logran answered, unsure what Billy was up to.

“What about Tom?” Tommy asked.

“Oh yes, the Green Ranger,” Logran said. He turned and unleashed a ball of explosive energy. Dragonzord was bombarded with energy, pieces ripped from its shell covered the area until the Zord’s emergency system kicked in and the Zord vanished. “He served his purpose and distracted me so you could get your powers back, he won’t be missed.”

In columns of light the Rangers and Logran left for the quarry. This more than their powers were on the line.

Tom lay inside the remains of the Dragonzord, what was left of his life ebbing away as the Zord was transported back to its underwater resting spot. A short rest and the Zord would return, just as Tom’s Ranger powers were regenerating him. It had been a close call; he had known somehow that when he had followed Tommy into the present, he risked certain, but this experience was not what he had expected just how close to death he would come.

The poison had not affected him like it did most victims. He didn’t feel the pain or the gradual leeching of his life force. Instead the poison was attempting to break down the cloned cells in his body, reverting him to the magic from whence he came. Fortunately the Morphin Grid leant him additional resistance; he would live. There was no poison left in his body, it had been burnt off by his metabolism, and the damage though severe was reversible if he could reach medical help.

Slowly he lost consciousness, as the struggle left him exhausted. But before he did so he swore on his powers, his life and his soul that Logran would not be allowed to continue. As long as Logran lived, Tom would be there to stop him. “Please, let me survive this so I can keep my word.” Green light surrounded him as the Power moved to protect him from further harm. He had demorphed and held his Power Coin in one hand. In the other, he held the Wizard of Deception’s wand.

Tommy was losing again. Logran had not tired from recent events while the Rangers had just battled unmorphed to retrieve their powers. This time Tommy had hardly managed to land a blow and Logran was already on the point of victory. He grabbed the Rangers’ leader and turned to the onlookers.

“You will surrender your powers, now!”

“That wasn’t the deal,” Billy told him in response.

“Surrender your powers or Tommy here will die at my hand.”

At that point, two things happened: Logran cried out in pain. Smoke poured from the dark Ranger while Tommy stood straight, sword gripped firmly in his hand.

“Now it ends,” Tommy stated as Logran burst into flames, cursing at Billy and the Rangers.

“What happened to him?” Tanya asked.

“He didn’t take the oath seriously,” Billy answered.

Tommy leapt forward, his sword meeting Logran’s as he landed. The two warriors fought for a while as their blades met in a flash of energy. Logran was surprisingly skilled despite being on fire.

Then the Red Ranger saw an opening and in a repeat of a move he had made in their earlier battle, removed Logran’s sword arm and most of his shoulder. A spinning slash across the chest stopped abruptly when it hit something hard. Tommy drew back the blade and thrust forward, bringing the power of the Zeo Crystal to the battle.

There was an explosion of gold metal and Tommy was thrown backwards as the wicked Ranger’s uniform vanished, leaving Logran behind, his body covered with shards of gold. Flames were consuming his body, as he stood defiant. Then a pool of darkness opened around him, sucking the still screaming Logran inside.

Tommy stood victorious, raised his hand in triumph and promptly fainted.

“So when Logran threatened us without ending the match, he broke his oath… Logran was as good as gone,” Tommy said.

“Affirmative,” Billy answered. “Logran never understood the meaning of the oath he undertook. He thought he was swearing the oath on the father of Lord Zedd, a creature of chaos and wickedness without a strong sense of honour. But he forgot that Zedd as we know him has a mortal host and that host had a father.”

“That is correct Billy,” Zordon boomed. “Lord Zedd’s father was a noble king who created strong enchantments around his honour. Should anyone cause dishonour, he would in turn destroy him or her. When Logran failed to keep his oath, he broke that word of honour. The spell was quite specific: those who dishonour my name shall be bound in fire and removed from this world to one of eternal sorrow.”

“So what will you do now?” Tanya asked.

“I’ll use the wand to go back to Colonial Angel Grove,” Tom answered.

“Tommy will go with you and bring the Wizard’s wand back to this time,” Zordon offered.

Tom frowned and shook his head. “Sorry Zordon, but that wasn’t the deal. I go back to the past and then I’ll decide what to do with the wand.”

“I assure you…”

“You’ll what?” Tom demanded, “Lie to your own Rangers again? Hold the wand here in case you need me again? That’s not going to happen Zordon, I don’t belong here and I am not backup in case your team fails.”

“I cannot allow the wand to fall into the wrong hands,” Zordon pointed out.

“When I get home, the wand will be disposed of.”

Zordon sighed. He could not win this argument, no matter how hard he tried. And he knew that after all he had done to help, the Rangers would never attack Tom. In short, he had no choice but to agree.

“Very well Green Ranger,” he said. “May the Power protect you.”

Tom said very little as he teleported away.

Angel Grove Youth Center

It seemed strange to be in such a sombre mood in the middle of one of Ernie’s parties. But today the Rangers couldn’t bring themselves to smile. At least not yet. There was something they had to do first.

“To Tom Oliver,” Tommy said, raising his glass.

The others followed suit. Although they had gotten over the shock of his departure so soon after his return, they still felt guilty for putting him that position. This toast was their way of say goodbye, albeit they were drinking smoothies.

“Thanks Bro,” Tommy whispered.

The Moon

“How dare you return here?” Zedd boomed as the battered form of his mother-in-law teleported into his Chamber of Command.

“They beat him,” the woman wailed. “They defeated my wicked Logran. And before I had the chance to learn all of his secrets.”

And he had been carrying more than his fair share of secrets. Why just uncovering his true identity had been a shock. It had been that little titbit that had set her sights on Earth in the first place. And now Logran was gone. Dead.. or perhaps not. But certainly he was now beyond her reach.

Zedd wasn’t listening though. He had seen enough defeats to guess what had happened. But that didn’t matter to him. What did matter was that this woman had invaded his home, insulted him, dishonoured his father – not that he cared about that – and then had the audacity to come crawling back after such a humiliating defeat. Zedd was no fool. He knew she was feeling weak and vulnerable right now. She took full advantage of it.

“Get out of my palace!” he snarled, aiming his staff at the woman.

“You can’t,” she protested.

“I can and I am,” Zedd reasoned.

“Rita… please,” she begged, appealing to her daughter’s better nature. Rita didn’t have a better nature.

“Bye Mom,” Rita waved, cackling.

“Your father will hear of this,” she warned, but the only response was a double blast from Rita and Zedd’s magic as she was forcibly dumped on a planet on the far side of the galaxy.

“And now, where were we?” Zedd asked as the music started again. His wife giggled, replacing the rose in her mouth as they resumed their Tango.

Another place

He screamed in agony as the curse tore him apart one cell at a time. It was excruciating and had he been anybody else he would have succumbed in minutes. But he was Lord Logran and he would not allow a small curse to stop him.

Losing to the Rangers, especially a clone, had been embarrassing and he knew that whatever regard Monastra Repugna once held for him was gone. But it didn’t matter. He had gotten what he had wanted from the old witch and learned far more about magic than he could have learned from her daughter. And he would put that knowledge to use in the future as he continued to build his own empire.

For while he had been willing to play the role of consort, he knew that he was destined to rule. And that the next time he met Tommy Oliver and his damned clone, Logran would put an end to both of them. In the meantime he had his own affairs to attend to and a resistance to crush. Planets like Earth didn’t just conquer themselves.


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Clash of Honour

Disclaimer: I do not own the Power Rangers; they belong to their respective copyright owners and are used here without permission. No money is being made from this fic.
Authors Note: This is an alternate universe from the television show with an alternate timeline.

Clash of Honour

The Moon, Prime Reality

Inside the lunar palace Lord Zedd and Rita Repulsa were engaging in the favourite marital activity: arguing: Lord Zedd was just about to strike out with a particularly nasty barb back when the palace started to shake.

“What is that?” Zedd demanded, not used to having his tirades interrupted before they were started.

In answer to his question there was a sudden burst of flame accompanied by a pleasant yet sickly smell. Smoke enveloped the area before lifting like curtains to reveal the new arrival. She was tall with long black hair, which trailed behind like a cloak with emerald strands showing. In some places the dying spell had yet to take place and the black looked decidedly grey. Her eyes were cold and conveyed very little as she looked around the room before her gaze settled on Rita and Zedd.

“So this is what happened to you,” she said after a short time, looking at Rita critically.

“Who is this woman?” Zedd demanded, pointing his staff at the intruder and ignoring his wife’s desperate warnings not to. "How dare you invade my domain!"

“Zeddy,” she squeaked, noting that Goldar and the rest of her former henchmen had decided to kneel. The clone had followed suit, deciding to play it safe and maybe live a while longer. “This is my mother, The Mistress Repugna.”

“Your mother?” Zedd asked, clearly confused before he growled. “Great, just what we need, a useless member of your family to leach off us.”

“How dare you? I am Monastra Repugna, Mistress of the Dark Cosmos and sworn enemy of all that is good,” Monastra announced proudly. Her cold eyes fixed on Zedd’s staff, which he now lowered. “And you’re the man, who married my beloved daughter,” she said thoughtfully, “I don’t think her father will approve. He prefers suitors with their own skull.”

“Daddy disowned you, you’re not even connected to him anymore,” Rita pointed out. "So it doesn’t matter what you say."

“Oh Rita, my poor ignorant daughter. How we could have neglected your education so much that you would even think to talk to your mother like this. Do you really think that your father disowning me means that our relationship has ended? Your father and I have been friends, lovers, enemies and so much more since before you were born. And for many years after you were born for that matter. Your father has things to me you would never believe, both good and bad. Why I remember the time he flayed me within an inch of my life and then set off an explosion, knowing it would kill me but lacking the desire to do the deed himself. And then after all that he got bored of whatever dregs he found to entertain himself and had me resurrected as something suitable to be his dark queen. That… creature, had a servant summon my spirit from the afterlife, shred it to remove any trace of decency and then used his magic to shape the darkness that remained into what you see before you. So don’t think for a moment that your father and I do not share a special connection. He wouldn’t let me escape him through death, why would him banishing me would make a difference?"

She laughed at the thought of the things he had allowed his servant to do to her to transform the noble being she had once been into the villain she had become. And she vowed not for the first time that one day she would show him how much she appreciated his efforts… by returning the favour.

"The truth is that while your father is an extraordinarily evil creature, he cannot be expected to give me his full attention while running an empire. And without him to entertain me, I grew bored of his court and decided I would travel and perhaps build a small empire of my own; a few centuries domination of the M-51 Galaxy can be so dull. We still speak of course and though our paths have taken us in different directions, he will Your father and I still speak though. One day he will tire of my absence and call me back to his side. And depending on my mood I will either return willingly… or we shall re-enact our courtship as he tries to force me. Would he succeed? I honestly don’t know; we’ve both had out little… changes. But you on the other hand have not changed. The least you could have done was to restyle your hair.”

“Enough!” Zedd boomed. “I don’t care about my wife’s imbecilic family. What are you doing here in my palace?”

“Oh I’m just passing by and thought I’d drop in on my favourite daughter,” Monastra responded. She continued, apparently ignoring Zedd’s tirade. “As I said, I’m planning on starting my own little empire in the far corner of this little Galaxy. You needed worry though, I’ll allow you to keep this planet, if you can ever conquer it that is.”

Zedd snorted, earning him a disapproving look. He seriously disliked this woman who had invaded his home without an invitation. He couldn’t stand the idea of relatives turning up and refusing to leave.

“So Rita, what have you been up since the last time I saw you?”

“She got trapped in a Dumpster,” Goldar blurted out, earning a sharp look from Monastra and a look of absolute hatred from Rita. He shied away from the first and returned the second with his own look of disgust.

“Quiet monkey brains,” Rita ordered. “I might have been put in a Dumpster, but I did trap Zordon.”

"Oh yes, I remember now," Monastra said with a touch of emotion showing. “I remember how proud I was when I heard the news that you had put an end to dear old Zordon. I was distracted at the time or I would have come to congratulate you in person. Afterwards the thought just slipped my mind… I’m not sure why." There was a pause before she shrugged and offered her daughter a rare smile. "Well done."

She owed Zordon so much for the kindness he had showed her before Master Vile had located her. And she had longed to show him just how much she appreciated his actions, as she cursed him into oblivion. But it seemed her daughter had gotten there first and that not only filled her with pride, but also caused her to ponder the horror on Zordon’s face when he realised the monster Rita had become.

"And now you are stuck here on this rock attacking some backward planet, why?”

“Zordon is down there,” Rita answered. "I thought I killed him, but he survived."

Internally she smiled at the look on her mother’s face. If they played this right, then maybe her mother would help them.

“Besides, Earth is not an easy planet to conquer,” Zedd interjected. He was keen to save face. “They have Power Rangers.”

“All planets worth conquering have Rangers of some sort,” Monastra answered. “Powered or not, the presence of a Ranger team is no excuse for incompetence. If you cannot handle things, step aside and someone else can deal with it.”

“You arrive here — in my palace — telling me how to deal with those Rangers?” Zedd was furious. “Putties, remove her.”

“Putties?” There was amusement in her voice as she asked. “You use Putties? Oh my, you really went all out to create your own forces Zedd,” she added sarcastically as she took in his poorly modified Z-Putties. “Please, tell me these are not your normal foot-soldiers.”

“Of course they’re not!” Zedd snapped. This woman knew she was annoying him and seemed to enjoy making him twitch angrily.

Still, he wasn’t angry enough to stop his Z-Putties from advancing on the wretched woman. Against Rangers they were practically useless, something Zedd had come to expect. However against a witch like Monastra, a woman not used to the trials of regular combat, he expected them to prove useful. They advanced on her while she watched with interest. Only when they pounced, did she act, turning to look at Rita.

“Didn’t you teach your husband that these Putties are little more than golems with a few spells to grant them limited intelligence?” she asked.

“I know that,” Zedd snorted as the first Z-Putty made contact with her arm. He had never really wanted to use Putties at all, but had been determined to prove that he could succeed with the resources Rita had been forced to rely upon.

“Then you should have foreseen the outcome,” she told him.

The first putty solidified as it touched her, the shell breaking down rapidly as it crumbled into dust. A second stepped towards her only to start bubbling rapidly as she forced it to boil.

“To the unskilled general, like my beloved daughter, these Putties are a useful resource. Loyal, numerous and ultimately expendable. Anybody can create a Putty given the right tools; Monster-matic, energy from a staff, it’s the same thing in the end. Both methods make equally inferior Putties.”

She reached down and scooped some of the molten clay that had been the second Super Putty. She closed her fist, squashing the clay into a deformed ball.

“Now a real witch who knows what she is doing can accomplish so much more. Rita learnt how to make Putties from her father, but he only learnt the skills in passing. Her brother lacked the skills to learn the arts of golem making altogether. I however, learnt from the best: my grandmother. Rita can use clay to make Putty Patrollers and perhaps the odd monster. In my hands, this clay can do anything. Watch…”

The rough ball bubbled into a perfect sphere, which came to life in her palm. It rolled to the ground and started to spin like a top. Suddenly, it jumped into the air and formed a giant blade, which severed one of the heads from the closest Z-Putties. When it landed, it leaped again, although this time it nearly split in two. Two smaller balls formed with blades of their own, joined by a very fine fibre of material connecting the two. Two more Putties were cut in half by the smaller spheres, and then the balls spun around each other, hitting some more. After reforming quickly, the ball then threw a projectile about the size of a golf ball, at incredible speeds at dense group of the Z-Putties, striking the “z” spot with ease. Several were destroyed in this way as the projectile ricocheted around, and Monastra seemed to smile ever more gleefully as the sphere mercilessly slaughtered the few remaining foot soldiers.

As she turned her hand, the ball reformed back into a perfect sphere and calmly rolled back to her waiting palm. Around her she could sense Rita and Zedd’s unease at the power she had displayed. Although it took all her willpower not to show the effect such a display of power had on her. Magic was exhausting, creating golems even more so. Still it had probably made Zedd aware that she was not to be fooled with.

Rita looked over the crumbled remains of the Z-Putties wondering why she had never learnt to use her skills to this level. With that sort of power, her battles against Zordon would have turned out far differently.

“Mistress Repugna!” a cheerful voice called as Scorpina entered the chamber, skilfully avoiding the kneeling henchmen until she was level with the female villain. She bowed, the smile never leaving her face.

“Scorpina dear,” Monastra greeted as a genuine smile appeared on her face. “If I had known you were here I would have visited before.”

Mistress Repugna had always had a soft spot for Scorpina. In fact of all her daughter’s so-called servants, Scorpina was the only one she would attempt to start a real conversation with. Scorpina was a fine warrior and although never trained in magic, a skill Monastra believed could have benefited the female Edenite, she was underhanded, deceptive, cruel… all the things a good warrior should be.

“I must admit that with you on her side, I am surprised Rita has taken so long to conquer this little world.” She emphasised the word little, not believing that Earth was a worthy target. After all, its population was primitive and weak. As slave labour they would be useless. As far as materials went there was very little of value to be found on Earth, at least to a powerful witch like herself.

“She has been as useless as the rest of these fools,” Zedd complained.

“And how often has she been allowed to act alone?”

“Once,” Goldar answered, “and she failed, just like Rita did.”

“And how many were you allowed to try Goldar?” she asked, displeased by the underling’s continued interruptions. In hear mind servants should be seen and not heard until invited.

“If… if you please Mistress Repugna,” Finster managed. “We have all been unlucky.”

“Ah yes, Finster,” Monastra drawled. “Ever the practical one. How are your monsters?”

“Not good my lady,” Finster answered honestly. “The Power Rangers have an extraordinary amount of luck when it comes to my creations.”

“I see. That is to be expected. You are an artist Finster, a creator of beautifully monstrous beings. As a monster maker you far surpass my skills. But you were not born a conqueror. Your monsters, like you, lack the desire to triumph, not the skill. And Squatt and Baboo, how are my favourite potion maker and warlock?”

“Hey, great to see you,” Baboo greeted.

Monastra sighed. “I suppose even the best villains have to endure incompetence at some point. In your case Rita, it would seem to be since your release. Or perhaps” she looked at Zedd, “perhaps I should say since your marriage.”

“If you think you can do a better job be my guest,” Zedd snapped and immediately regretted his words. He disliked this woman and wanted her gone as quickly as possible. Now because of his big mouth he had practically invited her to move in.

“Sorry Zedd," she said quietly, flashing him a brilliant smile. "I have better things to do than sort out my daughter’s mess. I’m sure the two of you can work something out if you put you heads together… Then again, I’m sure my new prince would love the opportunity to test his skills and prove his worth."

And as she spoke, her newest lover appeared. His features were hidden by a dark green cloak, but Rita could sense that he had power.

"But of course, my Queen," he said, his voice sounding strangely familiar. And the two shared a deep kiss that caused Rita to look away.

Lord Zedd scowled as he watched the display, certain that the pair were doing only to aggravate him. By now he was convinced that the Mistress Repugna was special. She had certainly set a new record with him. Usually Zedd didn’t make up his mind until he met someone for the third or fourth time. But Rita’s mother was different because although he had only known her for a few minutes, Zedd thoroughly loathed the old witch.

“I fail to see how those Rangers could have defeated you so often,” she announced crossly. The left side of her face twitched she attempted to sneer at her son-in-law. With her magically altered face though it looked more like she was winking at him. Zedd recoiled in disgust; Mistress Repugna was old enough to be his grandmother. She ignored his reaction and continued. “Powered or not they are still humans. You have the power to destroy this planet, you have more monsters than is healthy and regardless of how you act, you seem to be a powerful wizard… for a halfwit. With the right plan, Zedd, you have everything you need to ensure victory.”

“Then why does he keep on failing?” Rita whined.

“Some are born to be great villains Rita,” she said. “Some are born to be losers. Sadly you married the wrong sort.”

“Why you…”

“Quiet Zeddy, getting worked up will not help,” Rita crooned.

“No, if I do all the work for you, you’ll never learn,” Mistress Repugna said, sliding her hands over her lover’s chest. “I’ll tell you what. If by the time I visit you have thought up a sufficiently evil scheme, I’ll lend you my little killing machine here to carry it out. If not… I might just have to try running things myself just to show how it is done. Have fun kids.” She disappeared in a column of flame, resuming her search for her brother. Her lover seemed to look around for a bit before the flames reappeared and a very feminine hand dragged him away by the neck.

“Well, what did she give you?” Zedd asked while looking at the box Monastra had thrown to his wife.

“Us Zeddy, she gave it to us,” Rita corrected nervously. In her palm she held a small box, which opened to reveal a figurine of a silver cat.

Zedd snorted in disgust and turned his attention back to ensuring that the wretched woman had left the Moon and was not lurking nearby. He was relieved to discover that she was gone and had apparently taken Scorpina with her. Neither woman would be missed in a hurry.

Meanwhile Rita was looking at the figurine with great interest. The silvery object had given her a new plan, one that would take time to come to fruition. She would need to find a suitable candidate and a spell. But then with luck she would have the means to draw all the Power Rangers into a trap. Especially that pesky traitor Tommy.

The Moon,
Months Later

It had been a busy time for Rita and Zedd. And while they could not claim to have achieved complete or even near victory, they had certainly not lost the war. In all fairness they had been on the brink of conquering Earth when the Machine Empire had arrived and evicted them. Now with Mondo gone it was their chance to retake control.

In the time before they had fled the Moon, they had been close to victory. True, the Power Rangers had managed to steal the Shogun Zords away from Rita and rescued Kimberly Hart despite Zedd’s plan to use her as a hostage, but they had not won the war. Zedd still had held the Falcon Zord that Katherine had captured for weeks because they were designed to act as a united force, he had incapacitated the collective Ninja Zords. As an added plus, they had managed to capture the great Ninjor and had used him to further their plans. That miserable maker of power coins had soon started to wish that he had stayed inside his temple.

His favourite memory of that period would always be his confrontation with Tommy. Though he had lost, he had still managed to outfight the famous Tommy Oliver. The boy had been inches away from death and had it not been for that blasted magical sword, Zedd would have emerged the victor. Still, that fight had been worthwhile and months after the event he planned to put the knowledge he had gained to use. He had already enjoyed Rita’s appreciation of his talents. His wife was quite the little dynamo when given the right inspiration.


Lord Zedd and his forces were celebrating. Not only had the Rangers been beaten, they were about to be humiliated in front of all those they had sworn to protect. At long last Tommy would be working for him, as he should have been all along. Who would have thought that a simple coin, the very source of the Rangers’ powers could bring them to their knees?

“Three cheers for Lord Zedd!” Goldar cried.

Zedd pretended to acknowledge the cheer; in truth he had little respect for Goldar. He wished that the gold armoured monkey would stop creeping and start fighting like the fierce warrior the titan had once been. Still he laughed, gloating over the defeat of his enemies.

“I’d better check on those Rangers,” he muttered. Their surrender had been a little bit too fast for his liking. “What? They’re trying to rescue Kimberly! Tengas, destroy them!"

Tommy appeared in the cave where Kimberly had been left, strapped helplessly to a table. The rotation made it difficult for him to see if she was moving. He hoped she was; they stood a better chance of escape if she could move on her own. If Zedd had immobilised her with magic, escape could prove impossible.

“Hold on Kim,” he said as he swiftly crossed the cave. “I’m getting you out of here.”

“Wrong, White Ranger.”

Tommy turned, knowing full well what he would find waiting for him. Lord Zedd in all his evil glory held his staff at the ready and Tommy’s confidence plummeted further. Few Rangers had faced Lord Zedd in one-on-one combat and lived to tell about it. Zedd’s introduction to the Power Rangers of Earth had almost ended with their deaths, and would have seen Tommy destroyed had it not been for an emergency teleport. Zordon had revealed in the days following Zedd’s arrival that the villain was more than capable of fighting his own battles and had been responsible for the deaths of many of Zordon’s allies. Tommy often wondered why Zedd didn’t take matters into his own hands, especially given Goldar’s record.

“You dare to double-cross me? For that you, and your precious Pink Princess will perish…together.”

Zedd’s laughter filled the cave. Tommy frowned. He had only a short time before the portal closed again. Fighting with Zedd was not something he had planned on, but it was now necessary. He would need to make it quick and hope that the Power would indeed protect him… this time.

“Back off, Zedd. I’m getting Kimberly outta here. It’s Morphin Time!” He was surprised that Zedd hadn’t tried to stop him. It would have been very easy to unleash an energy blast before the White Ranger had finished his transformation. But instead Zedd remained silent, waiting for his challenger. It was one of those strange things about Lord Zedd that as evil as he chose to be, he had some twisted sense of honour. “Okay, Zedd, I’m ready for you.”

Zedd laughed mockingly. “I’m far more powerful than you can ever handle, White Ranger.”

Tommy gulped. He had a feeling that Zedd was speaking the truth. Outwardly though he tried to portray a confident appearance. “Well, we’ll have to see about that, won’t we. Hiya!”

“Is that really necessary?” Zedd inquired. “Here I’ll do some: whoa, whoa, come and get me.”

Tommy realised by the third blow that Zedd was as dangerous as he had been during their first confrontation. Without dropping his staff, the dark master had effectively blocked his first two punches. If anything Zedd’s staff was an extension of his body, showing a degree of competency that could only have been achieved through regular practice and hours of training.

Zedd went on the offensive for a short time; showing that whoever had taught him to use the weapon had drummed into him the importance of using the whole weapon. Zedd’s attack used the length of the staff, the edge and points of the razor sharp ‘z’ at the top of his staff, and the rounded butt of the staff. Tommy was forced to dodge most of the blows since blocking them risked breaking a bone.

As the staff hooked towards his right knee, Tommy sidestepped and moved in close. He attempted a punch, but Zedd anticipated the move and caught the White Ranger’s fist. With a firm shove he threw Tommy backwards.

“Ah, you missed me,” Zedd taunted. He tried to drive the staff into Tommy’s mid-section; something Tommy was easily able to avoid.

“Is that the best you can do?” Tommy asked, sensing that Zedd was getting angry.

“You’re going to be sorry you said that,” Zedd growled in response. Energy shot from the end of his staff and enveloped the surprised human. With a jerk of the staff, the White Ranger was sent hurtling from side to side, bouncing painfully off the walls as he went. Then Zedd pointed at the ground and Tommy was deposited in front of him as Zedd sent a shockwave of black electricity into his opponent.

Tommy was desperate and flailed wildly as he tried to take Zedd by surprise, but his clumsy attack was easily blocked and countered.

“At last White Ranger, you will appreciate just how powerful I am. Such a shame it will be the last thing you learn. But just wait until I tell your pink friend how much courage you had at the end.”

Zedd fired his staff at Tommy, which causes him to writhe painfully on the floor.

“It … it doesn’t matter what happens to me, Zedd. Kimberly and I may not get out of here, but you’ll never be allowed to win.”

“Brave words, White Ranger, but alas… just words.” Zedd lifted his staff for another blast.

Tommy knew he had to move. If he was caught again, the chances were that he would not escape with his own life, let alone Kimberly’s. He rolled as the tip of Zedd’s staff glowed and continued to move. He ducked each blast, desperately trying to lead Zedd on without endangering his girlfriend. ‘This is it,’ Tommy thought as he finally moved into position. Zedd fired and Tommy once again moved aside, this time exposing the controls that held Kimberly in place. He smiled under his helmet as they exploded and Zordon teleported the Pink Ranger to safety. Now whatever happened, his fellow Power Rangers would not be forced to pilot Zedd’s ancient machines.

“This is over Zedd,” Tommy stated, drawing Saba ready for action, using the blade to deflect another one of Zedd’s blasts.

Zedd snorted and attacked, disarming Tommy with a decisive swipe of his staff. More energy drove the White Ranger to his knees as he prepared to deliver the finishing blow.

But Zedd had forgotten that Saba was not a normal sword. He had been enchanted to aid the White Ranger in combat and had gained some abilities of his own in the process. When he had been sent flying away, Saba had levitated him into a position where he could help and had waited for the opportunity. Then faced with Tommy dying if he didn’t act, the sword had sailed through the air, hoping to destroy Zedd in the process.

Zedd heard the sword approach and twisted rapidly. His staff was in position to block before Saba could change course. However Zedd’s staff could not withstand the touch of the enchanted blade and was transfigured into a snake before Zedd could argue.

Tommy remained on the floor, dazed from the blows he had taken and terrified by the man who had come so close to killing him. He raised his hand to intercept Saba and teleported away, leaving Rita and Zedd to rant about losing their bargaining chip. Regardless of who had won or lost that battle, Tommy had found a new level of respect for Zedd. While Goldar had grown easier to defeat in combat over time, Zedd was as dangerous as ever and despite his reliance on magic; he was a capable combatant with a weapon.


Zedd walked into the lower levels of the motor home he had acquired as a temporary headquarters and enchanted so it was linked to a limitless number of pocket dimensions, searching for Rito and Goldar. When he found them, he groaned to himself. He was the supposed conqueror of Earth and his two most powerful warriors were morons.

“Did you watch the battle?” he asked, not waiting for pleasantries. There had been a monster attack earlier that day by what was left of the Machine Empire, and the Rangers had triumphed yet again. But this time Zedd had kept a close eye on the fighting hoping to glean some vital information from the Rangers’ triumph and the machines’ failure. The chamber’s occupants nodded. “What did you learn?”

In between the meaningless banter of Goldar and Rito, Zedd was pleased to learn that somebody had been paying attention.

“The time has come to crush those humans,” he said. “And with the fate of their world on the line, I doubt those pesky brats will be able to ignore my offer.”


“Hold him still you fools,” Zedd yelled as he watched Rito land on his back yet again, while Goldar could only moan from his place on the back of this bucking bronco.

Rita watched from the sidelines, feeling a mixture of glee at her husband’s inability to perform even the simplest of tasks and anxiety that their prisoner was about to escape.

“We’re trying Ed,” Rito protested.

“That’s Zedd, you fool. My name is Lord Zedd!”

“Lord Zedd, got it. Sure thing Ed.”

“You’ll never hold me, you villains,” Ninjor proclaimed as he wriggled free of Goldar’s grip only to be set upon by Putties. “I have the power of good on my side. For I am Ninja.”

This made Rita Repulsa even more irritated; furious would be a better word to explain her mood as she saw yet another scheme about to fail. But this time the plan would flop before it had a chance to get started. For their scheme to stand a chance they needed the coin smith to work for them and that meant he had to remain their captive.

“Hurry up and get those bracelets on him,” she snapped at her husband, brother and anyone else who would listen. “Move it, monkey boy!”

Goldar glared at her, baring his teeth in an attempt to look threatening. It didn’t work, Goldar seemed impressive and awe inspiring when you first met him, but after ten thousand years in a Dumpster, he was next to useless.

She decided she would have to act personally if she wanted to avoid losing this most important pawn in her plan. But first she would need to distract Ninjor.

“Well, it’s been a long time, are you ready Baboo?”

Rita frowned, she didn’t remember telling Squatt and Baboo to join in. ‘just what I needed: two more imbeciles in the mix.’


Rita watched in stunned silence as Baboo launched himself through the air, claws outstretched. Ninjor stiff-armed and blocked Baboo’s attack while throwing Rito aside, but didn’t notice Squatt hurling himself like a living cannonball right into his chest. Ninjor struggled to stay on his feet only to be grabbed from behind by Rito and a growling Goldar. Ninjor hooked his leg behind Rito’s knee sending both Goldar and Rito to the ground. He quickly found his balance and tried to draw his sword.

Baboo and Squatt were not as dumb as they looked though and knew what came next. Not wasting any time Baboo got to his feet and kicked Ninjor in the back of the knees, forcing him into a backwards roll as Rita and Zedd’s foot soldiers piled onto the suddenly prone Ninja master.

“Now!” Zedd boomed, aiming his staff at the fallen coin smith.

Rita followed suit, conjuring the power binding bracelets into place around Ninjor’s forearms, filling them with her own dark energy. As she ceased her assault she looked to where her husband was casting the next portion of the spell. Chains of energy linked the bracelets while Goldar and Rito snapped heavier chains wrought of Cold Iron into place as an additional safeguard.

“We did it,” Zedd told her as the chains repelled his attack. He gestured to the Tengas and they hauled Ninjor back to his feet. “Not so eager to fight now, are you Ninjor?” he sneered.

It was pathetic in some ways to see the might Ninjor brought to his knees so easily. But there again, Ninjor had been resisting Rita and Zedd since he had been captured. In that time he had exhausted himself beyond his physical limitations and had been drawing heavily from the Morphin Grid to renew his energy. With the Cold Iron in place and the power binders blocking his Ninja talents, he was just a normal man in armour, armour that now weighed heavily on his unpowered shoulders.

“Maybe I should get Finster to build me a can opener,” Zedd quipped as he ran the tip of his staff over the Ninja master’s armour, producing only a small number of sparks and a significant cut in the metal plating.

“Brilliant Zeddy,” Rita cried as she joined her husband. “Now we can use him in our plans without the risk of him escaping.”

“I will never help you villains,” Ninjor said defiantly.

“You won’t have a choice,” Zedd answered.

“Brilliant!” Goldar proclaimed. Rita shot him a look and he shut up.

Angel Grove

“And here we have a statement from a witness who claims to have seen the stranger just appear from nowhere,” the tour guide toned as she pointed to a stone statue, which despite the damage caused by pollution and Angel Grove’s weather patterns, had survived the last century or two.

And it is said the stranger did emerge from the heavens
Bearing little more than the clothes ‘pon his back
And as his companion in white returned to the swirling gateway
Ne’er again to return
Did he decree: “Aw man.”

Tommy smiled as he read the words carved into the base of the stone statue of a very familiar figure. The statue had been a mystery to local historians, who wondered what the colonists had seen that day. Only in recent years had it been suggested that perhaps, just perhaps they had been talking about a Power Ranger.

“There are very few hints about whom this figure is or how he was significant to Angel Grove. Remember that this was a British colony in an area the Spanish had already claimed. Tensions were high for many years and at some points it appeared likely that either the foreign or native colonies would wipe out the colony. It is likely that this tribute is to one of the many people who worked tirelessly to bring about a peaceful outcome to such negotiations.”

Tommy knew and from the looks on his friends faces, they were also well aware of whom that statue represented. It was Tom Oliver, the clone Rita and Zedd had created from a lock of his hair. The same clone that had chosen to remain in Colonial Angel Grove rather than risk disrupting the Morphin Grid. Tommy had personally left the clone in the past, using the Wizard of Deception’s wand to return to the present, convincing himself that in doing so he had left behind the darkness within his soul.

The day Tommy had said goodbye to Tom had been the day the Green Ranger had vanished. Not only had the Evil Green Ranger had been laid to rest that day, the other Green Ranger had disappeared from Tommy’s life as well. He wasn’t sure which he hated more, the personification of the evil within him or the reminder of just how weak and useless he had been without his dark side in control; the good guy Green Ranger had been a pathetic joke.

But in recent times Tommy had found himself wondering whether dissociating himself with those incarnations of his personality had been wise. Near death experiences have a way of grabbing people’s attention and the battle between himself and Zedd a few weeks back had been a real eye opener.

That was what the Green Ranger represented. It was cautious, thoughtful, and slow to anger; it didn’t rush headlong into a situation and then improvise a way out. The Green Ranger didn’t strike head on. He used strategy. Even while he had been under Rita’s spell Tommy had felt the need to plan his next move, relying on cooperation with Rita to ensure that the plan continued as desired.

As White Ranger though Tommy had been keen to distance himself from both the good and the evil Green Rangers. He wanted the White Ranger to represent power and purity, not weakness or worse, evil. This had continued over the course of his time as the White Ranger. Cooperation had been thrown out of the window as the need to prove himself had surfaced again and again. He was aware of it, so were the others. He remembered Rocky once remarking that they could all retire and let Tommy handle things.

Then Rito had arrived and Tommy had received a wake-up call. The powers that evil could not take had been stolen away by his own stupidity. It had been a sobering moment to stand in Angel Grove surrounded by the remains of the Thunderzords.

But the real shock had washed away all Tommy’s illusions of invulnerability. When he had faced Lord Zedd alone, he had realised just how deluded he had become. Zedd had taken everything Tommy could throw at him and had kept coming. His staff had almost shredded Tommy’s uniform. Had it not been for Saba, Tommy might have died. That event while not fatal had led Tommy to rethink his approach to battle. And now as Red Zeo, he had been able to control himself to a greater degree, but the urge to charge recklessly was still there. He was just better at suppressing his urges.

The truth of the matter was that Tommy’s recklessness had been a facade to hide his fear. His days as the near powerless Green Ranger had been torture for him as Zedd had singled him out time and again. At first it had been an attempt to erase what Zedd saw as Rita’s greatest mistake, but over time he had seen the benefit of having Tommy as an ally. From then onwards the attacks had become even more personal as Zedd had made it clear that the only power Tommy would be allowed was power granted to him in the service of Lord Zedd.

He shook his head, not wanting Zedd to ruin his day. At the moment, everything was going well for Tommy. Kimberly had left and he missed her, but they had gained Katherine and he had discovered his brother. All that and Jason was back.

“Now, if you’ll all follow me, we can continue this tour.” The silky voice of the tour guide interrupted his thoughts, or maybe it was the sharp nudge Tanya gave him.

“Tommy, are you okay?” Kat asked.

“Yeah, I’m fine,” he said. “Just distracted.”

“I believe you might find it beneficial to discuss your problems,” Billy said.

Tommy chuckled. “It’s nothing guys, I was just wondering what happened to Tom?”

The others were silent; unable to give their friend the answer he sought. The friends continued their tour; each distracted from what should have been an enjoyable day.

Cranston residence

Professor David Cranston crossed the study and parted the heavy drapes to reveal a clear crisp night sky filled with multitude of twinkling stars. He thoroughly enjoyed evenings like this — as long as he was indoors. The fireplace contained a few quietly burning logs that filled the room with warmth as well a golden glow that always had such a relaxing effect on him. The house had taken years of work to get to the point where he felt it was perfect for both himself and his son, Billy. The perfect environment to sit and enjoy a new book that he had recently purchased; the background material for the project his wife was undertaking in Oregon.

He placed his hand on the windowpane, which revealed something else about this evening, it was extremely cold — unusually so. Angel Grove did not suffer from abnormally cold weather even in the heart of winter — in spring such conditions were almost unheard of. Of course nothing in Angel Grove could be described as normal anymore. Since the Power Rangers first arrived on the scene, life in Angel Grove had taken a definite turn for the bizarre.

As he glanced across the great lawn of his detached residence, he noticed a thin cloud of smoke rising from just behind the shrubs marking the property’s boundary. He quickly looked down see that it was not smoke at all but steam that was coming off some late night joggers.

He closed the drapes and left them to their exercise, it made him cold just to watch. He was glad that Billy was sensible enough to exercise indoors when the weather turned chilly. He was also glad that his son had friends who ensured that he was active instead of sitting in the garage all day. It not for his friendship with Jason and the others, David wondered how his son might have turned out.

Out of instinct he walked into the hall and looked at the distribution board. No real surprise there. Billy was home and downstairs in the garage, working on some new project. What he was working on David didn’t know, but he was sure that if Billy was involved he would find it truly remarkable. He had a very remarkable son; how else could you describe a boy who had visited another planet?

Rocky DeSantos burst into the Cranstons’ garage, a copy of ‘A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court’ in one hand and a large jelly sandwich in the other. He gave a short nod to the room’s only other occupant before flopping down on the battered sofa in to back corner.

Billy raised an eyebrow, but didn’t say anything. No doubt Rocky would say what he wanted when he was done reading, dozing or eating. Whichever it was he was doing at that point in time. At one time Rocky’s antics would have annoyed the Power Rangers’ resident genius, but just like Tanya’s awkwardness and Adam’s long periods of silence, Rocky’s exuberance had grown on him.

Billy continued his work and didn’t appear to notice that Rocky had even entered the room. Not the result the Red Ranger had been seeking.

“So that’s how it’s going to be Billy. I am not going away until you say yes.”

“You have yet to pose a question,” Billy mumbled, his head deep inside a strange box of assorted wires.

“Oh so there is someone alive in there,” Rocky laughed. “Let me cut to the chase. Tommy Adam and me are heading down to the beach tomorrow for a day out. We need four people to play beach volleyball and you are cordially invited.”

“I have too much work to accomplish this weekend, Rocky,” Billy said without glancing up. “I have to realign the vertical lift on Zeo Zord I and determine a way to integrate the Super Zeo and Zeo Megazords so they can work in unison.” He paused for thought. “Another time perhaps?”

“Bull!” Rocky exclaimed. “We’re not stupid Billy. We all know what’s going on, whom you’re avoiding. We’re a team Billy, you need to get these things out, discuss them and at least make it so you can be in the same room as…”

“I am well aware of your concerns. I assure you my personal issues will not affect the cohesive functioning of the team.”

Though he spoke the words quietly, it was easy for Rocky to hear the venom behind each syllable. That was not good, Billy was more upset than he was letting on and Rocky was unsure about how to help him.

“I’m sorry Billy,” Rocky said quietly. “I just thought that you needed a break,” he went on nervously. “We’ve all had a busy time of it lately and now that Mondo is gone… I just think you should take some time out while you can, look at what happened to Kim when she overworked herself.”

Billy sighed. “Rocky, please forgive me and accept my sincerest apology,” his voice already tinged with regret. “My frustration level with all my ineffectual attempts to replace Pyramidas has reached an all-time high. Everything I’ve tried has been a dismal failure. My anger has nothing to do with you and is inexcusable.” A small smile crossed his face as he added: “Nor is any other member of the team responsible for my mood. Perhaps some beach volleyball would make an interesting diversion. It would be beneficial to forget about Machina and Sprocket, Rita and Zedd for a short time.”

“Then I am sorry to disappoint you.”

The chillingly familiar voice startled both Billy and Rocky. They spun around and were horrified to see Lord Zedd step out of the shadows of the garage, where he had been watching them for some time, enjoying the small signs of dissension amongst the team. As the seconds ticked by, Rocky overcame his initial shock and his training took over. He began to move while simultaneously summoning his Zeonisers into the ready position. Tommy and Jason had constantly drilled it into Rocky, Adam and Tanya after the power transfer to never present an opponent with a stationary target, move immediately. Even seasoned fighters often ignored this seemingly obvious bit of advice. Jason had once told Rocky as a piece of parting advice that it was the very first few seconds that almost invariably determined the outcome of any fight.

With just a casual wave of his staff, Zedd enveloped Rocky in a faintly glowing pink sphere, which literally froze him in place. Rocky was conscious but unable to move. His mouth was frozen in the middle of calling on his power. The ease in which Rocky was rendered harmless actually stopped Billy in mid-stride from triggering the alarm he had installed after giving up the role of an active Ranger. What also stopped him was the impassive manner with which Zedd now greeted them.

“Enough! I assure you, I mean you no harm, yet. All I am here for is to deliver a message, a challenge if you will. And since I cannot just appear in the park and read a declaration, I decided a captive audience would prove beneficial.” Zedd delivered this seemingly benign little speech with his hands folded innocuously in front of him; staff leaning casually against his shoulder, attempting to dilute the natural menace he exuded.

Although Billy, like many of the other Power Rangers, had an almost intrinsic fear of Zedd – the Emperor of the Dark Galaxy had seemed unstoppable during the early days of his attempts to conquer the Earth and had practically defeated the Power Rangers single-handedly-, Zedd’s logic did not escape him. It would have been easy for him to have destroyed both the Blue Zeo Ranger and Billy before they could react.

Billy shuddered. Yes, perhaps their greatest and most insidious enemy had somehow easily bypassed the protective scans Zordon maintained on all the Rangers’ homes, possibly the most advanced security system on the planet, and was standing in the middle of his garage completely unhampered, currently free to wreak havoc and do as he pleased, but he had not done so, yet.

If recent events had shown anything, it was that the Rangers had more reason to fear Zedd than ever. When Tommy had gone to retrieve Kimberly from captivity, he had been lucky to escape with his life. Zedd had nearly killed him that day. Tommy hadn’t been quite so cocky since that incident.

The subtle change in Billy’s demeanour as he recalled the events Tommy had described did not go unnoticed by Zedd. “Your comrades have no idea that I am here so no one will be coming to your aid, nor will you require any. I will deliver my challenge and then leave you and your friends to discuss it.”

“Release Rocky as a show of good faith and I will hear your challenge,” Billy demanded with as much false bravado as he could muster stalling for time.

“Obtain his promise that he will not attempt to attack me, what little good it would do, and he will be released. But rest assured, should he break his promise, I will employ the same spell I have just demonstrated in tandem, and your friend will find his head and abdomen in two vastly different locations.” Rocky understood that this was no idle threat especially when Zedd punctuated his remark with an intimidating stare.

“As long as you don’t try to harm us, I won’t do a thing” Rocky managed to croak trying to sound as confident as possible considering his situation, but was unable to meet Zedd’s gaze. No doubt the Blue Zeo Ranger would be experiencing plenty of nightmares over this turn of events.

“Then we are in agreement and can converse in a civilised manner.” The pink sphere surrounding Rocky disappeared and he was able to move again.

Unhurried, Zedd slowly approached Billy, his gait a mixture of grace and strength, innate confidence and power oozing with every step. Billy had to consciously fight back the urge to run and managed to hold his ground, quoting equations to steady his nerves. Zedd towered over Billy, his terrifying visage now within a few feet of his own face. His elaborate costume, if one could call it a costume, with metal piping seeming to hold the otherwise formless flesh in place.

“State your challenge,” Billy said.

“A simple contest of solo combat,” Zedd replied. “One of your Power Rangers versus a combatant of my choosing. When my champion wins you will surrender your powers and Zords to me and they will then be dealt with as I see fit. Should your candidate triumph, I will release the Ranger that Rita and I captured during our time away from Earth and then leave this galaxy forever. Should you not accept the challenge: I will leave here peacefully and you will witness the death of a fellow Ranger knowing that you refused a chance to at least try to prevent his death."

“How can we trust you?” Rocky asked. “I haven’t heard of any kidnapped Rangers and besides… you could just snatch him away again regardless of the outcome.”

“And here you see the reason why I approached Billy and not your esteemed leader,” Zedd answered, unaffected by Rocky’s question. “Had I approached Tommy with my challenge he would have dismissed it outright. Rocky at least offers me the chance to prove I am genuine. Now, what about you Billy?”

“You obviously have some method of reassuring me that your intentions are honourable,” Billy said after some thought. "Otherwise you would not have offered."

“I will prepare a container for the prize and arrange to teleport it into the possession of Zordon if your combatant wins and remove them to the Moon should my champion triumph. I will surrender control of the container until a victor is declared, on the condition that no attempt is made to open it. Of course Zordon is welcome to check the spell is in place. He will be familiar with it.”

Billy’s eyes widened, recalling historical accounts of such battles. Once initiated neither party could meddle with the prize unless they won. He found himself automatically nodding and Rocky was looking at him in shock.

“Do you swear on the power of the Morphin Grid that you will honour the outcome of this challenge should the Rangers accept regardless of whether it turns out in your favour?”

“I will,” Zedd answered, shaking Billy’s hand.

“Billy?” Rocky asked, clearly confused.

“Later,” Billy told him.

“I will need to speak with Zordon and the other regarding your offer,” Billy told the chrome-lined tyrant.

“Very well, you have until tomorrow to decide. After that I will dispose of the prize in any way I see fit.”

Billy nodded and Zedd promptly vanished, leaving two shaken teenagers wondering just when he had stopped trying to kill them.

“We need to speak to Zordon,” Billy said after a while. Both boys had flopped down onto the sofa when Zedd had vanished, relief temporarily causing them to forget what had occurred.

Rocky nodded absently, still unsettled at the ease with which Zedd had neutralised them. Was this a new power on the part of the villain, or had he been toying with them all that time before the Machine Empire had shown up? Rocky couldn’t be sure, but the caution the older Rangers had always shown when Zedd was around made him think that perhaps he had taken the villain lightly.

“Come on,” Billy smiled encouragingly, noting the way his friend’s hand shook briefly.

In twin columns of blue and white light they were gone.

The next morning found Billy Cranston in the Command Center adjusting the communication console to transmit directly to the Moon. The discussion the night before had been heated with Tommy insisting they could not trust Zedd and even going as far as suggesting they use the opportunity to double-cross Zedd.

Billy shook his head, realising that Tommy would never understand why Zedd could be trusted. Billy had tried to talk him around, but Tommy was convinced it was a trap.

But then Adam had intervened. While Billy and Tommy could argue all day about the best way to approach the problem, Adam was quick to point out that Zedd was not the main point of concern. A life was on the line and if they didn’t accept the challenge, Zedd’s prisoner would be executed. They really didn’t have a choice.

That decided the whole team had discussed their best chance for victory. Of course Tommy had elected himself as their champion and had been quick to start discussing contingency plans for when he won. Billy had managed to bite back the remark about if he lost; Tommy could be an annoyance sometimes.

“It would help if we knew who Zedd had chosen,” Tanya had said.

Ever the practical one, her comments had made sense and led to speculation.

“As long as it’s not Rito Revolto,” Kat had joked. “I mean, ew, he stinks!”

That had caused the Rangers some amusement. In the end though it had seemed logical that Zedd would choose either Rito or Goldar. Zordon had pointed out that Zedd would no doubt attempt to strengthen his champion with a super strength potion of some type.

“I am sending the message now Zordon,” Billy said.

“Very well Billy,” Zordon replied.

Billy pressed the buttons and the deed was done. Now battle could commence.

Angel Grove Quarry

The Rangers appeared in columns of light shortly before their villainous opponents. Zedd and Rita were easy to recognise, Goldar and Rito likewise stood to one side.

Baboo, Squatt and Finster could be seen in the background. Finster looked slightly miffed at the idea of having to play the role of cheerleader yet again. Baboo and Squatt on the other hand seemed delighted with their new roles and actively waves their pom-poms around.

“I guess Rita brought the whole gang,” Rocky commented.

Billy didn’t answer though; his eyes were fixed on the two figures standing to one side. The first was a moderately attractive woman while the other was difficult to see due to the cloak he wore.

“Zordon, who is that?” Billy asked.

“That is the Mistress Repugna, Rita’s mother and one of the most evil villains the universe has ever known. At one time, she was one of my closest allies and dearest friends."

Back then Monastra Repugna had been known by another name and a title that had elevated her to the top of Master Vile’s list of enemies. She was recognised for her ability to channel a type of energy that originated within the Morphin Grid known as the Mystic Force. With that power she had protected the planet of Magitopia until she had been called away to aid Zordon in his fight against evil. It was at that time that she had been seduced by Master Vile, albeit it briefly and while unaware of his true identity. And although she had escaped his clutches, he had been unwilling to let her escape his clutches. He later recaptured her and although Zordon was not aware of the whole story, he knew Master Vile had done something terrible in order to corrupt her to his side. He had destroyed the beautiful being Zordon had once known and turned her to her into something worthy of being his bride.

Now Zordon doubted there was anything left of his old friend beyond a waning physical resemblance, just as the lovely daughter she had loved so much had been corrupted to become the evil witch Rita Repulsa. The only positive was that the moment Mistress Repugna had turned from the light, her ability to access the Mystic Force had been diminished; that particular power required certain qualities that Repugna now lacked. He could only imagine how angry Master Vile would have been when he discovered that little side-effect.

“Is she dangerous?”

“Mistress Repugna is one of the most dangerous beings you will ever encounter. Before she turned to evil, she was trained as a practitioner of battle magic. And although she lacked the experience of her daughter and son-in-law, she is still cunning and capable of manipulating others.”

It was true. Despite her earlier boasts, she was not a schemer like her husband. She preferred to crush her enemies rather than playing games with them. She rarely had ulterior motives to her schemes, meaning that when she succeeded it was normally a large victory and when she lost, she walked away with nothing.

“Okay, we need to be extra careful here guys,” Tommy said as they waited for Zedd to approach. “I have a bad feeling about this.”

“Rangers of Earth, I challenge you to one on one combat in this place. Should your fighter succeed, I shall release my prisoner to you. Should my champion triumph,” at this point Goldar laughed and said something about it being a certainty, “you will surrender your powers and control of your Zords.”

“As Red Zeo Ranger, I accept your challenge – after you vow to abide by this agreement regardless of the outcome.” Tommy’s words were forced. He really did not want to be doing this, he knew Zedd had something planned.

“I swear upon the power of the Morphin Grid that I will abide by our agreement, regardless of the outcome of this battle. I further swear that neither I, nor my allies will seek to intervene in the battle and that my champion will fight only until he attains victory.”

“I accept your word, Lord Zedd,” Tommy said. “Let’s fight.”

“Patience, you insolent pest,” Zedd snapped. “First, you Rangers must swear on the Power that you will abide by the decision and not seek to intervene in the battle.”

The Rangers nodded, but it was Tommy who voiced their answer. “We swear it.”

Rita cackled and the Rangers wondered just what they had let themselves in for. Zedd also seemed pleased as Goldar made a show of inspecting his sword.

“Name your champion,” Rita challenged.

“I will fight,” Tommy answered. From the look on Rita’s face she had not expected any other answer. She seemed pleased. “And you?”

“Our champion will defeat you without breaking a sweat, Red Zeo Ranger,” Zedd boasted.

Goldar stepped forward upon hearing his master’s words.

“Where are you going, Monkey Boy?” Rita asked. Goldar looked at her with a mixture of rage and confusion. Then Rita burst out laughing. “What, you think Zedd meant you?” She sounded amazed.

“As if,” Zedd growled. “We intend to win this battle today. And winning is something you seem to find impossible when dealing with Earthlings. Get back in line.”

Goldar dejectedly did as he was told.

‘Is Goldar sulking?’ Adam wondered as he focussed on the titanic warrior.

“Hey Ed, does that mean I get to fight? Puh-lease,” Rito begged.

“NO!” Rita snapped. “You’d mess up worse than the monkey.”

“And my name is Zedd, LORD ZEDD!” Zedd added.

“Zedd, gotcha, sorry Ed.”

“Enough!” Zedd snapped, his skin sparking with angry red energy that extended all the way to the tip of his staff and back. “Here is my champion, Red Ranger. I’m sure after meeting him you will learn to appreciate his abilities. This is Lorrigan, the Impactor."

The Rangers had been taken by surprise. Rito or Goldar they had been expecting. Pudgy Pig would have been less of a shock, but to hear that Zedd had found a warrior that claimed to hold Ranger powers and was willingly evil, and had convinced him to fight, was a shock.

“I think we broke them Zeddy,” Rita cackled.

“Don’t look so worried, Red Ranger, I promise he will not kill you… Although when this is over you may wish for death. The fight will take place on the quarry floor,” Zedd stated. “All non-participants will watch from the sides. Once the battle begins, observers may not intervene or teleport away. Those who are here at the start are compelled to stay until the end.”

The participants nodded, the observers moved to their places and silence fell over the makeshift arena.

“Oh I so enjoy moments like this. This is going to be too easy,” Lorrigan said.

“I wouldn’t bet on it,” Tommy shot back as the two circled each other.

Lorrigan attacked with a lightning-fast crescent kick to Tommy’s head, but Tommy ducked it by dropping into a split. Then he retaliated with a fist to the groin. However, Lorrigan pivoted out of the way and snapped a front kick at Tommy’s head. Tommy rolled away from Lorrigan’s kick, leaping upright. Lorrigan turned sharply, trying to jab his elbow into his opponent’s side. Tommy allowed his momentum to carry him through, extending his leg outwards to knock the elbow aside before trying to decapitate Lorrigan with another blow, which Lorrigan promptly blocked.

The fight continued in this way, physical attacks interspersed with periods of waiting. While they were both the same size, and equally matched in their skills, Tommy was getting the worst of the physical battle. Lorrigan’s technique was complicated and unpredictable. The aggressive style had caught him unawares. He had received a black eye and split lip from a series of strikes to his face. Still, he refused to surrender.

“I’m disappointed,” Lorrigan stated as he backhanded Tommy. “I expected you to fight, not surrender in the first few minutes of this battle.”

That was enough to draw Tommy back into the fight. A flare of rage shot through Tommy’s mind, instantly clearing his senses. He recalled how his sensei had once told him to focus his emotions to bring himself extra strength. By learning to channel his anger, Tommy had learnt to use his emotion in fighting, instead of allowing his anger to blind him.

Lorrigan was taken aback at Tommy’s sudden rage, and was unprepared when Tommy launched an attack using all his skills. In quick succession, Tommy had blacked both of Lorrigan’s eyes, split his lip, and cracked him in the stomach. Backing away from his berserk opponent, Lorrigan allowed a look of pleasant surprise to cover his features.

“So you do have some fight in you,” he said, wiping the blood aside from his lip. “Why don’t we take this little fight up a notch?”

“You’re on,” Tommy replied confidently.

“Zeo Ranger V – Red!” Tommy called. Lorrigan closed his eyes and waited for a black ball to appear in his right hand, a telltale sign of the powers he possessed.

“I can’t believe he can use that sort of power against us,” Rocky said, desperately watching the two fighters transform.

Tommy was soon in his usual costume, ready to fight. His was face hidden by his helmet making him as difficult to read. Lorrigan’s mask helped to hide his expression. His gloves and boots had thickened into a firmer layer of black felt.

“Now we shall see who is the more capable,” Lorrigan announced.

They shook hands, marking the beginning of this new phase of the battle. Tendrils of energy ran between them as their powers flared wildly. Both opponents tried to intensify their grip, but only one was successful in doing so. With an almost careless twist, Lorrigan sent Tommy tumbling away. The Red Ranger landed on his back, scraping along the quarry floor until he finally stopped. He lay there for a moment, wondering just how much power Lorrigan had put into that first throw.

Tommy flipped back to his feet and the two warriors met in a flurry of kicks and punches. Before they had been fast, but boosted by their respective powers, their blows became almost invisible. Tommy dodged a left punch, ducked quickly into a prayer position and then launched himself upright with a sharp uppercut. He had some satisfaction in watching Lorrigan’s head rolled to one side with the force of the punch, before he felt the sharp thrust kick to his stomach. Both combatants fell back to the ground.

“Come on Tommy!” Kat shouted from where the five remaining Rangers had chosen to view the contest.

As Lorrigan came charging in for a new assault, Tommy used his abilities to teleport out of range. Lorrigan retaliated by using his own skills, and as Tommy delivered what should have been a devastating punch, the Ranger found himself holding only empty clothing.

“Hey pip-squeak!” Lorrigan boomed from above, where he had used his armour’s power to enlarge his body.

Tommy closed his eyes and focussed his senses. He drew his Zeo Pistol and snapped off a series of shots that hit Lorrigan between the eyes. Then his giant opponent swung with a double axe-handled blow to the Ranger’s head and Tommy was glad he was now so much smaller he could duck easily.

“Yeah!” Rito cheered as he watched Lorrigan’s attempts to squash Tommy like a bug.

“Fool!” Goldar grumbled; well aware that if he was too successful, Lorrigan would become Rita and Zedd’s new henchman while he and Rito were relegated to the pitiful tasks Baboo and Squatt were called on to perform. ~What do those two do anyway?~

Lorrigan didn’t waste much time. He shrank back to his normal size and as soon as he did so he was attacking his opponent once more. He unleashed a burst of power, which struck the Ranger on his right side. Tommy struggled against the beam as it forced him down, concentrating on channelling the evil energy away from his chest. From the pain in his side he guessed the assault had cracked at least a rib despite his uniform. Not a good start.

Lorrigan was somewhat surprised when Tommy managed to return to a standing position; the beam of energy now focussed on the Ranger’s arm. He could tell it was still painful for the Rangers’ leader to endure such an intense beam, but his ability to divert it meant Tommy had more control over his powers than Lorrigan had given him credit for.

“My turn,” Tommy grunted, forcing the power of the Zeo Crystal into a ball, which he then threw at Zedd’s champion.

“Go Tommy!” Tanya cheered from the sidelines.

“Be careful,” Kat called, noticing that Lorrigan was already recovering.

The ball exploded on impact, causing only minor discomfort. It did however cut short Lorrigan’s energy beam. Lorrigan took a step back before returning fire with a set of discus blades. They exploded on impact, tossing Tommy to the ground again.

“Oh no,” Billy said softly.

“What is it?” Adam asked.

“Lorrigan’s going to try to finish the contest,” Jason replied.

Sure enough Lorrigan was building a huge ball of fire, ready to shoot at his prone opponent.

“Tommy, look out!” Rocky cried.

Tommy’s head spun around as Lorrigan released the flaming ball. He stayed low, bringing all his will to bear against the fire. With a grunt he stood and batted the fireball aside, not really worrying about where it landed. An explosion rocked the quarry as the ball caused a small rockslide.

“Very good,” Lorrigan commended. “You’re better than I thought. But then I haven’t had a worthy opponent for centuries, so I doubt you have any real skill.”

Tommy growled and attacked, discharging energy bolts from his Zeo Pistol, that Lorrigan deftly avoided. The few that got past the clone’s defences seemed to bounce off randomly.

“You can’t hit what you can’t see,” Lorrigan told his opponent as he raised his hands to the side of his head, palms facing his foe and fingers spread outwards. A faint glow appeared around his head and it took Tommy a moment too long to realise what was happening.

“Tommy, he’s trying to turn himself into a mirror!” Billy warned, just as Lorrigan accomplished his goal.

Catching the sunlight as it fell on his forehead; Lorrigan redirected it as a concentrated stream of light. Straight into Tommy’s eyes. He had the satisfaction of watching Tommy grope helplessly at his helmet, trying to reach his burning pupils, shaking his head in the hopes of clearing the pain.

“Or hear.”

Lorrigan’s body twisted as he forced an object to fly towards Tommy at just past the speed of sound. It narrowly missed the Ranger, but the noise was enough to leave Tommy deafened. He had now lost two of his senses.

Lorrigan used the opportunity to transform his clothing into armour while Tommy was incapacitated. He was now at a level beyond that of a normal Ranger while Tommy was helpless. In desperation the Red Zeo Ranger tore off his helmet, unheard of in battle. Lorrigan didn’t intend to give the Ranger a chance to catch up.

“Tommy!” Kat cried frantically.

She wanted to help her boyfriend, they all did. But the rules of the contest prevented them from interfering in anyway. Billy’s earlier shout had almost been grounds for disqualification.

“Don’t worry Kat,” Tanya said. “He can do this.” Only Rocky heard her add: “I hope.”

Lorrigan stalked the suddenly vulnerable Ranger. Tommy’s senses had recovered to the point where he could make out shapes and hear loud noises. Fully powered, Lorrigan made just enough noise for Tommy to pick up on. He attacked, catching Lorrigan by surprise. However the attack was short-lived as Lorrigan gripped the Ranger’s shoulder and tossed him aside. Tommy landed on his feet, but Lorrigan drove a fist into the ground, creating a chasm that swallowed the Zeo Ranger whole.

“Now that is how to fight a battle,” Lorrigan gloated.

“It’s not over yet,” Zedd pointed out, spotting Tommy’s gloved-hand as it gripped at the flaking soil.

“Back to Action!” Tommy called, using the time it took to recall his helmet and bring his powers out of standby mode. He also took the opportunity to teleport away from the chasm.

Now they were fighting man to man, both determined to triumph. There was something important on the line in this battle: pride. Tommy was drawing every erg of power he could from the Zeo Crystal, using a technique usually reserved for special moves. He used his enhanced strength to lift a large chunk of rock from the ground and threw it at his opponent. Lorrigan teleported away before it crashed to the ground. Tommy though knew where his enemy was and tackled him around the waist before Lorrigan could regain his bearings.

The clashed again, this time their punches glowing with the power that they siphoned from their respective power sources. The Zeo V Power Sword clashed with Lorrigan’s short sword, neither able to break through the other’s defences. A lucky blow from Tommy breached Lorrigan’s guard, allowing Tommy to deliver two more blows across the shoulder, followed by a blast from his helmet that struck Lorrigan in the chest. Then glowing with energy, his sword was drawn through Lorrigan’s side, cutting upwards until it emerged through the shoulder blade. Lorrigan dropped his sword; it should have been the end of the match.

“He did it!” Rocky proclaimed loudly.

“I don’t believe it,” Zedd hissed angrily. He turned on Monastra. “I thought you said he would win. I thought your beloved Lorrigan was supposed to be among the elite of evil warriors.”

“Oh he will win Lord Zedd. Trust me: the powers of an Impactor are very special. Just watch!”

As she spoke, Lorrigan’s armour was already starting to heal his wounds, regrowing his lost arm in the process, much to the shock of the Rangers.

“Aw man,” Tommy exclaimed as he watched Lorrigan reform.

“I can’t believe it,” Adam said softly to the others.

“Neither can I,” Billy agreed. “I didn’t think even the Morphin Grid could heal such a wound.”

“Guys, Tommy’s in trouble,” Kat pointed out.

That was true. The battle had taken a lot out of the Ranger. He had put a great deal of his strength behind that final cut, and it had been for nought.

“Now it’s my turn,” Lorrigan mocked. “Maybe you should surrender, nobody would think any less of you. How could they?”

Tommy braced himself as Lorrigan charged. The two collided, and for the first time it was a battle between the undeniable force of Lorrigan and the immovable object that was Tommy. Waves of surplus energy exploded outwards, causing their audience to take cover. Both warriors had dropped their swords in the collision and it was clear that Tommy had taken the worst of the impact.

“Zeo Power Blaster!” Tommy called, hoping that he could summon the Rangers’ joint arsenal.

The powerful weapon appeared and he lifted it into position. He hoped it would be enough; he doubted he had the strength to call forth the Zeo Cannon.


“Wow, I never thought he’d be able to use it,” Rocky said.

Lorrigan however was not impressed. The blast of pure energy engulfed him, burning away the evil power that kept his armour intact. Flames consumed him, but his will was strong and he survived.

“Oh man,” Rocky moaned. “This isn’t good.”

Tommy had dropped the blaster back into its storage place, retrieving the Zeo V Power Sword as he did so. He watched as Lorrigan battled to shake off the effects. It was clear he was succeeding.

“I believe I said it was my turn,” Lorrigan said coldly as the last of the flames faded, leaving him in his charred armour. “First, I will clear the air.”

He threw his arms into the air and power erupted around him. A gold and black aura formed around him, cloaking him in its power and as he stretched, the aura exploded outward.

“What was that?” Tanya asked as Tommy was thrown off his feet.

“A manifestation of Lorrigan’s power,” Billy replied. “It would appear he has chosen to wield the energy directly against Tommy without a conduit.”

“Now, for the special feature,” Lorrigan grinned as he looked down at Tommy.

He raised his right hand and extended his index and middle fingers from the clenched fist. A tiny ball of black energy formed around the extended fingers. Electricity crackled around his hand as he pressed the fingers to the top of his helmet. The energy around his fingers grew in size.

Tommy stood slowly, a look of shock registering on his face. He could sense the power Lorrigan wielded and wasn’t sure whether or not he would be able to avoid it. He certainly did not want to test his uniform against such power.

“Hiyah!” Lorrigan cried as he fired a ball of black fire at his opponent.

Tommy jumped aside as more and more blasts came towards him.

“What is he doing?” Zedd demanded.

“Stay still,” Lorrigan, cried as Tommy continued to dodge, seeking a way through.

“Never!” Tommy returned defiantly.

“Oh but you will,” Lorrigan told him in an amused tone. “Because if you try and dodge this attack, it will strike your friends. And since they cannot morph, I’d wager they would suffer far more than you would.”

“You wouldn’t,” Tommy claimed. “The rules.”

“The rules only say that the observers cannot interfere,” Lorrigan answered. “I’m aiming at you, it’s not my fault if they get hit because you moved.”

He was caught and Tommy knew it. If he moved his friends were finished, while if he stayed still, the battle would be over.

“Time to make up your mind, Tommy,” Lorrigan said. “Because here it comes!”

The world seemed to move in slow motion as Lorrigan drew his fingers away from his head, focussing the massive energy now trapped inside those fingers. He pointed at Tommy, knowing he would not miss; the civilian Rangers would not survive and morphing was out of the question. He locked onto his target and relaxed the safeguards he had used to prevent the energy from dissipating. “Destructo Beam!” he cried.

“Tommy, no!” Kat cried. Adam and Jason grabbed her shoulders, turning her away. Billy didn’t have the presence of mind to turn his head. Just like a serious road accident, the events that followed captured the attention of those nearby.

Rocky’s mouth opened and closed, but no words came out. His eyes widened as the twisting beam of energy rocketed its way towards his friend. He wanted to close his eyes and look away. He was tempted to transform and pull Tommy out of harm’s way. He did neither. It was too late.

Rocky and Tanya were on their feet as Tommy took a defiant stance and waited for the inevitable. They looked across to where the villains were seated and scowled at the delight evident on Rita’s face.

“That’s more like it,” Rita said, her voice subdued by the cheering of Baboo and Squatt. Zedd was speechless and Finster was rubbing his eyes to make sure they weren’t deluding him.

The beam tore directly through Tommy’s right shoulder, spinning him around like a rag doll. Smoke hissed from the gaping wound as he tried to stay upright. The pain was incredible and had it not been for the adrenaline already flowing, it would have been far worse. He doubled over, catching his breath and trying to gather enough sense to make a comeback.

“Did you enjoy that?”

He looked up. Lorrigan was stood in front of him, hand outstretched palm first. The face that now confronted him was smiling.

“I knew you wouldn’t let me hurt them Tommy. You hero types are way too predictable.”

“The match is over,” Goldar cried from his position.

“This match ends when I say it ends,” Lorrigan snarled. For once Goldar had the sense not to pick a fight. He drove his knee into Tommy’s gut and then smashed both fists down upon the boy’s back. As he saw the Ranger’s power start to fade, he fired another blast that carried Tommy across the base of the quarry. “Now it’s over.” Tommy’s powers faded at that moment, no doubt agreeing with what had been said.

Everything turned dark as Lorrigan raised his hand to the sky one more time, this time to dissolve his costume and return the powers he had summoned. As the Rangers and villains around the edge of the quarry looked on, they saw Lorrigan standing unscathed surrounded by scorched earth. Across from him Tommy lay unmoving.

“Stop!” Rocky warned as he saw Lorrigan march towards his leader. “We had a deal Zedd.”

“Yes we did,” Lorrigan agreed. Effortlessly, he lifted Tommy from the ground. “I’m only collecting my prize. Hand it to me, and he lives.”

The others reluctantly complied, handing him the Super Zeo Zords, Golden Power Staff, their Zeonisers and the Zeo Crystal, which Billy summoned from the Power Chamber.

“You know,” Billy said as he held the crystal out. “This doesn’t mean we can’t attempt to get them back again.”

Lorrigan’s face curled into a grin. “I look forward to seeing you try.”

He aimed his Golden Power Staff at the Super Zeo Zords, returning them to the Super Zeo Gems. The Rangers fell to the ground, feeling as if their hearts had been torn out as the remnants of the Zeo powers were sucked from their bodies.

“Now we are done here,” Lorrigan said.

The villains teleported away, leaving the Rangers lying in the quarry, too shocked by the attack to move.

To be continued

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Genesis of the Time Lords

Disclaimer: I do not own Doctor Who. It belongs to the BBC.
Author's Note: Okay, the events in this story use the tale of the Timeless Child with a few small changes. I don't have a problem with a female Doctor as long there is a story need for it and not just a case of do it because we can. I quite like the idea that some Time Lords we met in the series switching gender. The Rani is a good example because I can see the type of amoral scientist she is when female is very different to how it would be when male. Missy and the Master are another example. Some Time Lords however I could see taking steps to avoid changing gender, going so far as to force regeneration to get back to what they believe is their true form.
However, when all is said and done the true origin of this story was very simple: What if the Timeless Child who became the Doctor had been the Doctor all the time?

Genesis of the Time Lords

He was a man who had lived far too long and seen far too many things. But even he knew that everything had to come to an end when it reached its time to die. And existence, the multiverse… the little reality that he called home, had reached its end. It was not a natural death, existence was dying everywhere at every moment in time. But an end had been declared and there was nothing to be done except welcome it.

Oh, there were ways he could have cheated the inevitable for a million or so years, but that would have meant a lingering painful death for something he cared for so deeply. And so he accepted that as the stars blinked out one by one, that the end was nigh.

But what about him? He had been cursed to survive a long time ago. There was little that could actually kill him and he had proven time and time again that even certain death could not keep him down for long. He was not immortal, yet he was incapable of finding his end, even as those around him fell. Would the end of existence be enough to lift his curse and allow him to enter whatever passed as an afterlife? The alternative of being stuck forever surrounded by nothingness… his mind would not even allow him to contemplate true nothingness as no matter how he tried to picture it, his imagination always gave it some sort of substance.

To be completely alone, unable to see anything, even darkness; to be unable to feel anything around him; he knew he would be driven mad by the experience. Perhaps that would be his form of oblivion, lost within his own mind for whatever happened next.

"It doesn't have to be, you know."

He turned toward the female voice and took a step back. The short blonde with a bright smile stood watching him.

"Rose!" he started to say and then stopped. The features were hers but the eyes were not those of the person he had once known. This being was something far more powerful, far more dangerous and at this time: completely expected.

"I am the Bad Wolf, the end of everything," she told him as if he needed an explanation. "Except for you. Even I cannot end you, Doctor."

"Then why are you here? You couldn't stop this, nobody can."

"I wouldn't want to," she answered, honestly. "And nor would you. This is the end, as it should be."

"What caused it?" he asked, curious to know. This was not a death due to old age. Existence had just suddenly ceased.

"Many things," she answered. "Too many things. Anyone could have caused the end. Together it was unavoidable."

"So why are you here then?" he demanded.

"To give a choice," she answered. "There is always a choice to be made."

"Which choice?"

"The same as always, Doctor: do you cease here with the rest of existence or do you go on?"

"In the void," he said. It wasn't appealing.

"As a part of what comes next. There is always something next Doctor. Even when someone dies there is something that happens next. Existence is the same."

"So I could be a part of what comes next," he repeated. "Why me?"

"Why not? The universe… the multiverse… existence needs the Doctor. Existence needs the one that will make it better."

"I'll survive?" he asked sceptically. "How?"

"The same way you have always survived, Doctor: by wanting to."

A noise caught his attention. He looked out into the growing void. He could still see shapes in the darkness. Something was still there.

"What is that?" he asked.

"When a body dies, it breaks down and is consumed," she answered. "The same thing happens with stars and planets. Look behind you."

He did so and saw the shape of a fortress of some sort moving away from them.

"That is the wave of destruction sweeping through existence," she explained. "Before it lies the future, behind it lays the carnage."

"How do I stop it?"

"You cannot. It is nothing more than a representation of time passing. The one in the tower rides the timeline, recording events as he stares out of the window to see them coming. As time passes the past withers and vanishes. That is how it should be." She pulled his hand. "Now look back to what has been left behind. "That is the energy of a dying cosmos flowing back to its source. Negative Energy feeding back to where it will feed what comes next."

"So where does that leave me?" he asked.

"With a choice," she answered. "You can choose to stand your ground here behind the wave as it continues onward, or you can run."


"You run, Doctor. Run faster than you have ever raced before and overtake the wave. Run ahead of the destruction and make what you find there better for as long as you can before time catches up. Run beyond the death of this existence and help make what lies on the other side a better place."

The Doctor had by his own admission been running his entire life. Running to danger, running away from boredom. Seeking out what was wrong in an attempt to make it better. He had run fast enough to avoid death and now he was being offered the chance to run one more time into a new existence, a future he could not know… It sounded fun.

"What do I need to do?" he asked.

"This archway will take you to where you need to be," she told him "It will only allow you to go one way."

He gaped at the massive archway that loomed above him. It had not been there before and he had not sensed its appearance.

"Very well," he agreed as he turned toward the archway. "I just didn't think it could be s simple."

"Oh Doctor," she replied, her eyes glowing with golden energy. "Nothing is that simple. You will survive, but not remember. You will learn to be yourself again however long it takes. And while you are learning the universe will have to get along without you. And when you do find yourself, then you will start to make it better."

"Wait, this isn't what I agreed to," he protested. He found himself frozen in place.

"No, but it's something you could not refuse," she answered.

The archway glowed and the Doctor screamed as he was dragged into the vortex. His body was thrashed and torn by the forces at work. He struggled but could not endure. Against his will his body did the only thing it could in the circumstances: it changed. And then everything went dark.

In the early days of the planet Gallifrey, there existed a race known as the Shobogans. The Shobogans held the appearance of being humanoid, an appearance they would later attempt to make the default shape for all intelligent life in the cosmos as time passed. Although they had started out as a primitive race, the intervention of the Celestial had caused the close proximity of their world to a tear in the fabric of time to result in a rapid evolution. Their minds had been radically altered by the temporal energy around them, allowing them to learn and discover at an amazing rate. They had been perfect for the Celestials’ early alliance of primitive races.

As time passed the ancient Shobogans discovered more and more of the secrets of the universe. And through their discoveries they learned about the existence of the vast pool of energy that existed in another dimension. They even used it to light their early cities and cool their homes. But there were some among them who could channel that energy and use it to perform incredible feats that could not be explained by their understanding of science.

Their evolution made the Shobogans fast learners. They developed technology that allowed them to reach the stars and beyond. They used the energy they had barely begun to understand to power their ships as they sent out fleets to learn more about the universe and to secure their place within it. The colonies they established would remain long after the race discovered its greatest secrets and due to their use of magic, would become an embarrassing secret that they tried to cover up.

Thousands of years later and civil war on Gallifrey had seen the planet divided between those that could use magic and were willing to do so, and those that either could not access the energy in that way or favoured the highly praised arts of science. The ruling factions had been overthrown countless times as dominance shifted back and forth. Neither side had yet to gain the power to completely subjugate the other. Although they were more powerful at the time, the magic users lacked the desire to slay their enemies, preferring to be merciful. Sadly that meant further uprisings and more bloodshed as those favouring science and logic continued to seek the removal of magic from Gallifrey and the the universe, by any means…

However, some did not involve themselves in the war and chose to continue exploring the cosmos. Space flight had evolved to the point of being about to cross galaxies in a matter of months. Tecteun was one of the planet's greatest explorers had already gone further than many of her peers. She was an ambitious woman, always seeking to go further and achieve more than her peers. It was said that if she ever managed to see the entire universe she would start looking for ways to see what lay beyond its walls.

With the help of another engineer, Tecteun had built a new type of craft capable of crossing galaxies in a much shorter time, without the need for deep sleep. It was her latest flight that would attempt to reach the limits of known space as observed from her homeworld.

The flight was a success, crossing known space in a matter of hours. At her destination, she landed upon an empty world to refuel. It was there that she was drawn to a strange building and a child. There was no sign of other life forms on the planet, not family for the child. There seemed to be no logical way for it to have gotten there and no way for it to return to where it came from. It possessed no food or drink and was hardly dressed for the environment.

Tecteun did the only thing that she could, gathering the child and carrying him back to the ship. In her haste, she forgot to look for the source of the light that had drawn her attention in the first place. Together the explorer and her newly adopted son made a return to Gallifrey.

Time passed and Tecteun postponed her plans for exploration to raise her son. Although intelligent it was noted that he often seemed vacant and unaware of his surroundings. He had difficulty fitting in with the other Shobogans. He was not as physically strong as they were. And one day his weaker body cost him when following a falling out with a friend he suffered a head injury and died.

Only the son did not die. Instead, he glowed brightly and when the glow faded, the son had been replaced by a stranger. Research proved that the child and the older boy that had replaced him were the same despite the difference in appearance. Further, the effect of changing had been to heal his injuries, leaving him fit, healthy and alive.

For decades Tecteun sought to unlock the mystery of what had happened to her adopted son and to replicate the results. She conducted experiments upon her child, sometimes forcing the change to occur to gave data. As time passed, Tecteun grew old and fragile while her child remained young and healthy. It was only as her life was drawing to an end that Tecteun made the breakthrough needed to isolate the parts of her child's DNA that caused the effect; coincidentally the removal of such genetic sequences from his blood led to his DNA resembling that of a Shobogan.

Having finally unlocked a serum that could duplicate the effects of her son's ability, but knowing she did not have the time for formal testing, Tecteun injected herself with the spliced genes. The effect was an instant change of appearance as the genetic sequences altered the connection between her physical body and the life energy it contained. At the moment of change, the DNA triggered a cascade of spiritual energy to flow through the body, tearing it apart and then recreating it in a new form.

Years more research followed to perfect the method of splicing the DNA into the Shobogan body and making the changes genetic. Realising that immortality could prove a disadvantage, she altered the serum so that after a set number of changes it would break down allowing death to follow. At that point, she was satisfied with her efforts and shared the secret of her discovery with the rest of her people.

Her discovery was welcomed by the enigmatic leader of the Shobogan's anti-magic faction. He could see the benefit of an extended life to push their race onward. He was not made aware that she had changed the original nature of the serum, only that in its current form it would work twelve times. Tecteun was acknowledged as one of the greats of their newly formed society, along with their leader and the great engineer that stood at his side.

More time passed. The Shobogans mastered the art of space travel and turned their attention to the mysteries of time. They used their discoveries to continue their war on magic, attacking magical societies throughout history and forcing the universe to become the logical place they desired. They kicked the magical leaders off of their own world and rebuilt their cities to function on purely scientific principles. They proclaimed themselves the Time Lords and set out to record history in a way that would secure their importance and plane in the cosmic hierarchy. Eventually, they even went so far as to move their world through time and space so that it appeared to have been one of the earliest worlds to evolve, placing them in the company of the Guardians of Oa as part of the elder races.

As for the child that had brought such fortune to the Time Lords. After many years he became an adult and then attended the Time Lord Academy. From there what happened to him was unclear, but generations later a man known as the Doctor left Gallifrey in a stolen TARDIS. By that time his memory had been wiped and his personality changed several times.

There is a vault on the planet Gallifrey that is so secret not even the planet's leadership know of its existence. Inside the room stands a piece of ancient technology known as the Chameleon Arch.

The Chameleon Arch was a device capable of altering the biology of the body and the memories of an individual allowing them to become a new person. Through this technology the Time Lords were able to create sleeper agents to infiltrate worlds and change them to fit with the Time Lord’s view of how things should be. However the device in this room was special as it had only been used on one individual; this chamber was filled with the collected memories and biological records of the Time Lord known as the Doctor.

The room had ceased to be used after an incident had threatened to expose the work of Division – a top secret organisation at the heart of Time Lord society dedicated to guiding the universe down the correct path using any means necessary. And in doing so Division had been responsible for the genocide of countless races and the destruction of societies as they followed the Time Lord policy of removing magic and those that either used it or relied upon it for their survival.

The accidental revelation of some of Division’s activities had caused them to halt many of their activities, passing on such duties to other agencies. They had ceased using the Doctor as their tool, allowing him to finally become his own person that they would manipulate in other ways. But the containers used to hold his memories and genetic sequences remained as a record of all they had achieved. And in pride of place was the first container they had ever created.

This one was different to the others, for it had been this one that had turned the alien being into a true Time Lord, locking away his natural abilities in favour of those his people chose to give him. His memory of life before Gallifrey was removed. His knowledge of Tecteun and her research was lost. The possibilities that could have been unlocked through further experimentation, wasted.

But in the back of his mind, the Doctor retained some sense of what he had once been and a distant memory of the existence that had come before he had arrived in the universe. He would never remember it, but it would drive him in his quest to make things better. The new cosmos like the one that came before did not need to be perfect. It just needed to be right. Whether or not he could remember it, whether or not he chose to walk the same path he had walked before… even if he decided to remain on Gallifrey and never seek out his truth, a part of him would always remember what had come before.

And as an elderly man ushered his granddaughter into a waiting TARDIS, the universe seemed to hold its breath, desperate to see what would happen this time around.

End of Part

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Seeking Thunder

Disclaimer: I do not own the Power Rangers, they belong to whoever owns the copyright at the time of reading.

Seeking Thunder

“Ai-yi-yi, Zordon. Communication has been established.”

“Good work Alpha, open the transmission channel.” The Viewing Globe flickered as the long-distance communication systems stabilised the signal. But when it cleared Zordon was pleased to see a familiar, friendly face. “Greetings Gosei, it has been a long time.”

“Master Zordon,” came a formal response. “It’s a pleasure to hear from you.”

“I have read your reports with interest and commend your dedication to your task,” Zordon continued.

Shortly after the defeat of Rita Repulsa, Zordon and Gosei had realised that the war had taken its toll of Ranger teams. Some had been destroyed, others had been lost or had hidden their powers to protect them from evil. Zordon had sent Gosei out into the cosmos to seek out the lost powers, collecting those that were unprotected while leaving those that had been secured alone. It had been Zordon’s hope that should the forces of darkness return there would be the means to fight them.

“Thank you, Master Zordon. You should know that I have located the fate of one of the Great Stars. It has been installed in a temple as an energy source the locals refer to as the White Light. They have taken steps to secure it from evil and have even installed a guardian. I have spoken with the guardian and believe it would be best to leave the power undisturbed for now.”

“As with the Temple of Ninja Power, I agree with your decision to leave it alone,” Zordon told him. “Although I ask that you record its location. I am contacting you about another matter: Lord Zedd has arrived and has replaced Rita Repulsa. The war has entered a new stage my friend and I need your assistance.”

“Do you wish me to return to Earth and aid your Rangers?” Gosei enquired. He was not without resources.

“No,” was the firm response. “I am aware that Zedd is one of many threats the Rangers will face in the years to come. It is essential that they rise to this new challenge as they have done repeatedly in the past.”

“Then why did you contact me?” he asked, confused.

“While I am certain they will defeat Lord Zedd, they can only do so if they are able to call upon their Zords. Lord Zedd has used a monster to gain control of the Dinozords and I fear that even if the Rangers can release them from that control, the Zords will remain a liability now they have been in Zedd’s possession. I believe the time has come to upgrade their Zords to combat the threat Zedd poses.”

There was silence as Zordon turned to watch the Rangers fighting Zedd’s monster. They were on the defensive but showed no signs of surrendering. It made him confident he had chosen wisely.

“I understand that when you located the White Light, you also located the powers of the other Squadron Rangers.”

The Squadron Rangers were just one of many teams that had fallen during the war with Rita Repulsa. They drew their power through the Morphin Grid using a set of powerful crystals called the Stars of Heaven, although Gosei suspected they too might have been found and used as religious icons. Their team had also been known as the Thunder Squadron due to their use of the Thunderzords.

“Mostly rumours of their fate,” Gosei corrected. “I did find the resting place of the Thunderzords when I located the White Tiger Zord. I have not located any of the other powers.” There was a long pause as Gosei made the mental connections and realised what his master had in mind. “You wanted to use the power of the Thunder Squadron to augment your Rangers, didn’t you?”

“I had hoped that the power of the Squadron Rangers would serve as additional power if needed,” Zordon agreed. “However, at this time I would seek to use the Thunderzords as templates and reformat their existing Zords.”

Gosei considered the plan and realised that what his mentor suggested would work. The Thunderzords would provide a physical template while the energy from the Rangers’ existing Zords would allow for reformatting within the Morphin Grid. It would take a great deal of work to recalibrate the Zords and would rely upon the Command Center to control the mixture of energies.

“You realise that should the Thunderzords fail they could damage the Command Center and your link to Earth?”

“I do,” Zordon agreed.

Much of the Command Center’s systems would need to be tied into regulating the dangerous high energy fields needed to maintain such a transformation. Too much strain and there was a chance the backlash could destroy the Rangers, their powers and the Command Center. But it was a risk they had to take.

“I fear there is very little time to complete this task,” Zordon rumbled.

Indeed, if they were lucky, they would be able to connect the Red Dragon Thunderzord to the Command Center’s systems. But linking the other Zords would take too long to complete. The best they could hope for was a limited connection and would have to accept that the resulting upgrades would lack many of the features of the original Thunderzords. At least they would benefit from the increased durability.

As Gosei worked on his end and Alpha Five made the changes to the Command Center’s power core, the Power Rangers managed to release their Zords from Zedd’s control, only to see the villain cast them into the molten Earth. If anything, that made the task easier as now they were working with just the energies within the Morphin Grid.

“The Red Dragon Thunderzord’s energy matrix is fully engaged,” Gosei reported as the machine started to respond to the Red Ranger’s call.

It was saddening to see the Thunderzords teleported away, knowing that in order to integrate them with his Rangers’ powers, Zordon would need to break the might machines down and then allow the Power to rebuild them again. Alas that was the price to keep Lord Zedd from conquering the Earth.

And now it was time for Gosei to resume his mission, seeking out the lost powers of the past and ensuring they were beyond the reach of those that would abuse them. He had built a sizeable collection of the many thousands of years since Zordon’s victory. But there was more to find and if Zordon was correct that Lord Zedd was the first in a growing number of threats, perhaps they would be needed all the sooner.


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What’s Tomato You?

Disclaimer: I do not own Power Rangers.
Author’s note: This story is set in the Conquest of Evil Universe and takes place during the period when Lord Zedd had replaced Rita Repulsa and was focussed on destroying the Green Ranger.

What’s Tomato You?

The Power Rangers were tired. Lord Zedd had been relentless in his attacks, determined it seemed to continuingly draw them into battle, knowing that such exertion increased the strain on the powers. Zordon had had to recharge Tommy’s Power Coin several times in recent weeks and there was no denying that with each charge the coin was losing more and more power. They had tried to keep Tommy in reserve to save his strength, but Zedd it seemed would not be denied and had simply increased the ferocity of his attacks until Tommy was forced to step in.

The villain’s most recent creations had not even shown the thought that he had put into previous monsters. Zedd had just found something he could transform with his wand, cast a spell and pointed the result in the Rangers’ direction. It was crude had held little chance of conquering the planet. But they could not deny that Zedd was winning when it came to his ultimate goal of destroying the Green Ranger.

Zedd’s latest monster had been created from a pincushion and had attacked the Rangers with its pointed swords. It would have been a joke, except the pin swords were extremely sharp and the Rangers’ weapons had been unable to pierce its defences due to its thimble shield.

It had been Kimberly who had found a way around its defences, nailing the monster with arrows, which had allowed the others to move in close and break the thimble shield. After that it had been the now familiar scenario of Zedd growing his monster and the Rangers taking it down with their Megazord. It was almost lazy and easy to assume that Zedd had gone soft… until they remembered that the villain had succeeded the moment that Tommy had been forced to morph and enter the battle.

Then there was the damage that the battles were doing to Tommy himself. Although Zordon and Alpha had tried to keep it to themselves, at Tommy’s request, the constant fluctuations in his Morphin energy was starting to take a physical toll on his body. Rangers were supposed to be either morphed, unmorphed or in standby mode. The brown outs caused by his coin’s damaged connection meant Tommy’s body was sometimes trapped between those states. It was of serious concern for the Rangers and more so for Zordon who had confided to Tommy that even if there were a way to fix his coin, the damage to his health would make it far too dangerous.

In short, the Green Ranger was operating on borrowed time. Zordon and Alpha knew it, the Rangers knew it and of course Tommy understood his next battle could be his last. Most importantly though Lord Zedd was aware of how close to victory he was growing and would likely continue to step up his attacks until he got his way.

Even Bulk and Skull’s antics failed to put a smile on their faces. The two were engaged in some sort of experiment to find the identities of the Power Rangers. Exactly why they wanted to expose the secrets of those that had saved their lives on numerous occasions was unclear, but most days it provided a small distraction.

“Ladies and gentlemen behold,” Bulk proclaimed as he held up a twig. “With these dowsing rods we are going to track down and reveal the secret identities of… the POWER RANGERS!”

There followed a typical Bulk and Skull demonstration of their new equipment during which they were drawn to Ernie’s milkshake machine, the water fountain and Billy. They rapidly dismissed that last one as a false reading, declaring in the process that there was no way a geek like Billy could ever be a Power Ranger. And then they were drawn out of the door and away from the Youth Center on their newest adventure.

“Man, those guys never learn,” Zack smiled. Their antics had helped lighten the mood a little after all.

The others shared a laugh before getting down to business. Even though the fate of the world was in their hands and their friend was losing his powers, some things could not be ignored. Such as their science projects for school the next day.

“I’ve been working on a new fertiliser formulation that can help tomato plants to adapt to harsh soils,” Billy announced. “I thought maybe we could submit it as a group project.”

He didn’t mention that his first attempts had created a super-efficient weed killer that destroyed any plant it happened to touch.

The others nodded and discussed the plan. They would not be working on the formula but providing the scientific testing and documenting the results. It would be mostly a case of transferring Billy’s test plants into individual pots and keeping the control group separate from those treated with his formula.

“Good idea Billy,” Trini praised.

“We should take a look at the seedlings before we head home,” Billy urged. “”We need to have the proposals for the project in tomorrow.”

The others nodded and finished their drinks before leaving.


On the Moon, Lord Zedd alternated between being pleased that his plans were progressing and anger that despite his eventual triumph the Rangers dared to continue as if nothing was wrong. There should have been no escaping the conclusion that their friend Tommy would soon be rendered powerless and their number would be reduced to five. They should have been cowering in the knowledge that once he had finished with the embarrassment that was the Green Ranger, he would turn his attention to each of them in turn, tipping their team apart one Ranger at a time.

And how did they demonstrate this fear and understanding? They went to Billy’s garage and potted a few plants.

“If they are so interested in tomato plants then let’s see how they deal with the more aggressive variety,” he growled.

“Brilliant master,” Goldar cheered in the background.

Zeroing on the science room where Billy had left his plant alongside the remains of those that had died when he had gotten the formula wrong, and the plants that grew there, Zedd unleashed a bolt of magical energy, transforming the plants on the counter top into his newest monster: the Killer Tomato.


“Wow Billy-man, I know you said that formula was strong, but I didn’t expect this,” Zack commented as the Rangers arrived outside of the classroom.

Billy had gained special permission to use the classroom to ready his project. But the thin green roots could be seen extending under the door and up the sides of the walls had not been there when he had visited earlier.

“I don’t understand,” Billy protested. “I haven’t applied the formulation yet.”

“Guys I think we need to be careful,” Trini urged.

“Yeah I don’t like this,” Kimberly added.

Jason cautiously reached for the door handle and after opening it, pulled the door open.

“Look out!” Kimberly warned as the Rangers found themselves under attack from rotten tomatoes.

Then Tommy let out a yell as a vine wrapped itself around his foot and started to drag him into the classroom.

“Tommy!” Kimberly cried as the other Rangers raced to assist their friend, pummelling the vine with anything they could find until it let go.

Suddenly the vines stopped fighting them and retreated into the classroom, along with the other roots that had been growing up the wall.

“I have a bad feeling about this,” Zack commented, sparing a glance to where the previously thrown tomatoes had landed, corroding a hole in the walls.

The others could only nod in agreement as something growled.


“Enough playing games,” Zedd growled. “I created you to destroy those Rangers, not play with them. Now get on with it!”

He unleashed a bolt of energy that teleported his creation away from the school and into the middle of Angel Grove Park.


After checking the coast was clear, the Power Rangers decided to contact Zordon.

“Rangers, Lord Zedd’s monster has reappeared in Angel Grove Park,” Zordon told them after they filled him in on what had transpired.

“We’re on it Zordon,” Jason promised. “We need to be careful guys. I’m sure this thing can do more than just throw rotten fruit.” The others agreed with the need for caution, but it was time for action. “It’s Morphin Time!”





“Sabre-toothed Tiger!”


“Ahhh fresh water and plenty of space to grow,” Killer Tomato sighed. “What more could a growing monster need?”

He was about to find out as the Power Rangers arrived in their customary fashion. Fortunately, Lord Zedd had seen fit to send some of his Z-Putties to assist.

“Hey!” Black Ranger shouted when the team arrived, “Does Pumpkin Rapper know that you’re stealing his look?”

Killer Tomato was a humanoid monster with a large tomato for a head that looked as if the fearsome face had been carved into it. It wore a red cape and had vines trailing down the back of its head like dreadlocks.

“Ha ha, very funny,” Killer Tomato shot back. “Let’s see whose laughing after this!”

A large tomato appeared in each hand and he threw them at the Rangers. Instinctively the Rangers dodge, but the tomatoes exploded on the ground, knocking the young heroes off their feet. As they picked themselves up and resumed battling the Z-Putties, Killer Tomato lashed out with his vines, striking at the Rangers and causing their suits to spark.

“Power Axe!” Black Ranger cried before leaping at the monster.

Killer Tomato responded by spraying the incoming Ranger with tomato juice, knocking the Black Ranger away and leaving him smoking on the ground.

“Zack!” Green Ranger cried as he disposed of a Z-putty and hurried to his friend’s side. “You okay buddy?”

“That stuff is nasty,” Zack replied, looking down at the still smoking area where the juice had connected.

Red Ranger and Yellow Ranger had teamed together to fight the monster, their Power Weapons cutting through its vines. Blue and Pink Rangers had finished off the Z-Putties and were hurrying over to help. But if anything, the monster appeared to be growing stronger.

“Hey, what’s that?” Green Ranger asked, spotting a bottle on the ground. He recognised Billy’s handwriting on the label and realised this was the formula his friend had been working on. “Aw man!”

Killer Tomato threw more of his tomato bombs, knocking the Rangers down and prepared to dose them all with his corrosive tomato juice. Before he could do so, the Rangers were teleported away.

Power Chamber

“Thanks, Zordon,” Jason gasped as the Rangers started to recover. “That monster is stronger than I thought.”

“Guys, I found this in the park,” Tommy stated, showing them the empty bottle of growth formula.

“That would explain it,” Zack commented.

“Affirmative,” Billy added.

“So, what do we do now?” Kimberly asked.

On the Viewing Globe they could see Killer Tomato walking through the park, using his powers to trap innocent civilians inside giant tomatoes.

“Alpha and I have scanned those tomatoes and have found they are similar to the bombs he used against you,” Zordon warned.

“He’s going to blow them up,” Trini realised.

While the others were watching the events unfolding, Billy was thinking of what to do. He almost wished his formula had been a failure…

“Guys, I have an idea, but I need to go back to the classroom to get something,” he told them.

“We’ll hold him off for you,” Jason promised. “Back to Action!”


Angel Grove High

“Let’s see it should be in here somewhere,” Blue Ranger remarked as he made his way into the science room and over to the remains of the desk where his tomato experiment had been. After searching through some of the various concoctions, he located the one he wanted. “This should do it.”

“I’ll be taking that Blue Ranger.” Billy looked up and groaned when he saw Goldar blocking the entrance, flanked by several Z-Putties.

In desperation Blue Ranger licked the switch on the rooms lighting rid, blinding the villains with the sudden glare. It wasn’t much but proved enough for Blue Ranger to escape.


Angel Grove Park

The battle was on once more as the five Rangers engaged with Zedd’s monster. Green and Black Ranger held him, allowing Yellow and Red Rangers to attack with their weapons before jumping clear to give Pink Ranger a shot with her Power Bow. Working together they managed to keep the monster distracted although it was too powerful to be held down and soon sent Green Ranger tumbling away.

Blue Ranger appeared in a column of light, avoiding an incoming vine as he did so.

“Guys, I’ve got it!” he proclaimed.

“All right Billy!” Red Ranger cheered, landing a boot in the monster’s midsection.

“Oh, I’m soooo scared,” Killer Tomato mocked.

“You’d better be,” Blue Ranger responded before jumping to attack, only to find himself tangled in one of Killer Tomato’s vines. “Hey, no fair!”

The other Rangers quickly found themselves in similar predicaments as Killer Tomato ensnared them with his excessive foliage.

“Oh no!” Blue Ranger called as the container he had been holding slipped from his grasp. “Guys, we need to destroy that bottle.”

“Trini!” Red Ranger cried, drawing his side arm.

Yellow Ranger looked up, realised what he had in mind and nodded her agreement. Red Ranger fired, breaking the vine that had been holding his team-mate in place. Yellow Ranger flipped free, firing her own weapon, but missing the container. Before she could try again, she was recaptured by Killer Tomato’s vines.

“Well that was a waste,” the monster remarked.

“Oh, I wouldn’t say that,” Pink Ranger commented from where she had landed after Yellow Ranger’s shots had freed her. She held the container in her hand and as the monster moved to stop her, she held it up. “Zack!”

Black Ranger did not miss. The shot from his Blade Blaster shattered the container right as Killer Tomato moved in front of it. The result was the monster took as full face of Billy’s earlier attempt at growth formula, which had turned out to be an overly effective weed killer.

“Noooo I’m melting, I’m melting!” Killer Tomato wailed as the weed killer destroyed his super powered body.

“Okay guys, let’s finish this with the Power Blaster!” Red Ranger called.

“Power Axe!” Black Ranger called, shifting the end of the weapon into position.

“Power Bow!” Pink Ranger added as she laid her bow across the end of the Power Axe.

“Power Daggers!” Yellow Ranger cried, retracting the blades and throwing the weapons so they attached to the underside of the bow.

“Power Lance!” Blue Ranger called as he split his weapon in half and then threw both halved into position next to the daggers.

“Power Sword!” Red Ranger cried as he slipped the sword on top of the Power Axe, forming the familiar giant crossbow that was the Power Blaster.

“Dragon Dagger!” Green Ranger called, adding his own weapon to the mix as the Rangers formed the lesser used variant of the weapon. The Dragon Dagger attached below the barrel formed by the end of the Power Axe, giving the weapon a bayonet.

“Fire!” the six Rangers cried in unison, unleashing their power at the monster who exploded.


“Damn those Rangers,” Zedd fumed.

“I am sorry for your failure, my Emperor,” Goldar grovelled.

“It was not my failure you imbecile!” Zedd bellowed, causing Goldar to cower in fear. “Although my monster has been destroyed, the Green Ranger was forced into battle once more, weakening his powers. Soon his luck will run out and the embarrassment of Rita’s mistake will be erased.”

“Yes, my Emperor!” Goldar cheered.


With Killer Tomato destroyed, everything was restored to how it had been before the incident. Those trapped inside the giant tomato prisons were released unharmed and the school science room was repaired. The Rangers had managed to visit long enough to divide the plants into their test groups, although it had taken some work to come up with a replacement for Billy’s growth formula.

There was no doubt that they had gotten lucky again. Tommy’s powers had held steady during the battle and the modified Power Blaster had prevented the need for a Zord battle. But there was no doubt the Lord Zedd’s monster were growing in power and that the Rangers were finding it increasingly difficult to destroy them.

Sooner or later something would have to give. They just hoped that when it did, they would be up to the challenge.

The End

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Crossroads of Evil Part 7

Disclaimer: I do not own Power Rangers, they belong to the current copyright owner.

Crossroads of Evil — King of Fighters Part 7

The survivors emerged from the stadium and were quickly directed to the area set aside for medical assessment. Heyman was fighting an EMT over having his blood pressure taken; his pressure seemed to be up if his yelling was any indication. Off to the side Miley Stewart and her family were getting checked out with Terry looking them over making sure they were okay. By his side was Nash standing by a plain clothes officer who taking a statement from Robbie Ray.

Once Cassidy walked out with her Ranger friends Nash ran up and held his daughter tight. Looking at the Rangers he could tell they kept their word. They looked after her as much as she looked after them. Terry also ran up to Alison as she came out with Cassie, Ashley and Kat.

“Great job you guys,” Terry said.

“Not sure we found out who won though,” Alison said.

“We’ll worry about that another time,” Terryr promised.

The last to emerge from their little group was Mackenzie. She was being helped by Lee Ann and Cam. Kincaid quickly rushed to her side as EMTs pushed through the crowd to help. After thanking the two kids, who went to look for their parents, she suddenly stopped and felt her belly.

“Jeff. It’s coming; the baby’s coming!”

The EMTs were quick to react, ushering her into the ambulance.

“I’m riding,” Kincaid said as he jumped into the back. The Rangers watched him go. Kanoi and Omano stood with their children as the ambulance pulled away. "You did good my son,” Kanoi had said.

“And you daughter,” Omano said. Both kids looked at each other and smiled. They agreed that they had done good.

Walking out of the Cow Palace, still phased a second out of sync with the rest of time, Minion, the Valeyard and Mrs Popplewick rounded a corner. After making sure they were clear of the building Valeyard deactivated the device.

“Well, your overall thoughts?” the Valeyard asked Minion.

Minion had seen much at this tournament. Some of the things he had seen had been impressive. Not extraordinary – for Minion had been in the presence of an evil so great it predated the modern incarnation of the Grid Masters. However he had been awed by the potential he had seen. He was still suspicious of Valeyard and the man’s motives. The other villain had revealed that Minion had the power to end the existence of this reality, but had not revealed how that would happen. Somehow Minion suspected the villain was already aware of the choice he would make.

“This world is not my own,” Minion admitted. “It is different. Everything about it feels strange. It is a reflection, a shadow perhaps. It is a distortion of the world I left behind. By rights I should destroy it, or see it destroyed. It would be so easy for me to do if what you say about the power of choice is true Valeyard.”

The Valeyard nodded at Minion’s assessment. “Of course there would be a few survivors who would know of such destruction.”

“Of which you would be one of them?” Minion asked. Valeyard only seemed to smirk at the question. The smirk Minion believed was the Valeyard’s yes.

“Of course the universe may not be destroyed right away,” Valeyard mused. “It could dwindle in the Axis for a while before it is conveniently erased. Or maybe it could be a quantum reality where the choice splits the universe. One where you say ‘yes’ and the universe continues. Or you say ‘no’ but you said yes in an alternate dimension and both universes are allowed to continue on their paths. Perhaps to those outside of this reality it’s existence is but the briefest of moments as events resolve themselves and it disappears.”

“You must be fun at science mixers,” Minion muttered.

Before Valeyard could respond, Mr Popplewick appeared.

“So, how is your princess?”

“Far too human for my tastes,” Mr Popplewick said. “She’s embracing evil, but not enough. She should be devoted to the dark powers by now. She has been taught too much about love.” Popplewick felt his stomach turn at the mention of the word. To him it was as much a weakness as honour.

“Careful Mr Popplewick,” Valeyard warned. “I met a few individuals who believed in a philosophy of ‘hate is strength’. It didn’t end well for them.”

Before Mr Popplewick could respond Kali appeared in a burst of purple flame. “Well, did you all enjoy the show?” she asked, proud of her actions.

“It was quiet the spectacle,” the Valeyard said.

Mrs Popplewick then added: “And quite informative,” as she held a data crystal. “I have everything we need here to make our eventual move.”

“Eventual move?” Minion asked.

The Popplewicks turned to Minion “We have our own plan against Zordon and his Rangers. A plan that could ensure that they never existed.”

“Along with humanity on Earth as a whole for that matter,” Mr Popplewick added.

Minion looked at the Valeyard and found his face hard to read. He wondered if he approved of what the Popplewicks were going to do or not.

“There are some things about humans I find useful,” the Valeyard said. “But Earth is not the only planet they originated from. and the natural magic of Earth could be put to… better uses if there wasn’t an active population.”

Minion found the Valeyard’s words interesting. Here he was thinking about wiping a species from history while Minion was thinking about wiping out a timeline from existence. What was the difference between what Minion wanted to do and what the Valeyard and the Popplewicks sought to do?

“The plan may succeed. But then again it may not,” the Valeyard said. “If it doesn’t, at least the Rangers will be kept reeling. Keep fighting until they can’t fight anymore. Then when their at their weakest comes the final strike.”

“A strike I shall bring,” Kali said. “With your help.”

Minion listened considering the words spoken before he spoke again.

“I do not like everything I have seen here,” Minion admitted. “And I feel that you have all been less than honest with me. You have tried to steer me toward the outcome you desire while pretending it is my choice. Know this: Minion cannot be manipulated by anybody and those that think he can will pay the price. My decision is made and you will neither change it or be told what it is. But, I do have to admit there are some possibilities here.” Looking at Kali he added, “and I see your zeal against the Rangers has… improved. I will give you that.”

Kali smirked at Minion’s words as if taking in a compliment.

“This world offend me; the End of the Rangers must happen.”

“It will,” the Valeyard promised. “It has to. Now, we must adjourn to another place.”

“Not yet. There is one more person I wish to see.” Minion then said.

As Valeyard saw the direction Minion was looking in he knew all to well what he sought: Jeff Kincaid. The Valeyard nodded all too well in understanding. Handing Minion another data crystal he said: “When you are finished we shall be at these co-ordinates. There are some final preparations I would like your help with.”

Minion nodded and then left the evil group following Kincaid and his friends. He would see if there were any weaknesses he could exploit in Jeff Kincaid. Minion was not certain he could stand against Kincaid’s power, at least not unless he understood exactly how it worked. So if he couldn’t defeat the power, he would find the weaknesses of the man who held it. If Kincaid crossed Minion’s path he wanted to be ready for him.

At San Francisco General, Kincaid sat with his friends waiting for news about his wife and child. They weren’t allowed into the ER as the baby was being delivered. "I should be in there,” Kincaid said for the umpteenth time. "I mean I am the baby’s father.” "Jeff, with all the missions we have been doing lately, some of them from that Shadow guy, you just didn’t get enough time to get cleared to be by Mickey’s side during the delivery,” Cassandra said. Kincaid nodded in agreement. He had been so busy being part of the force that gave evil nightmares that he never had time to prepare to be a father. "Don’t worry. You’ll be a good dad,” Cassandra said trying to be comforting. Kincaid nodded as if saying thank you. After a moment Cassandra then asked, "so, did we vanquish this threat Shadow was so concerned about?”

"I have no idea.” Kincaid said. "And I don’t think we’re going to find out today. Right now I’ve got my wife in the OR and she’s my main priority.” Everyone resumed their waiting until the nurse came out and called for Kincaid. "Mr Kincaid?” she asked.

Kincaid stood up. "That’s me.”

The nurse then smiled. "Your wife is in room 316.”

"And the baby?” he asked.

The nurse smiled and looked at the Night Ranger, now father. "Congratulations. It’s a girl.”

He couldn’t help but feel incredible joy at the words he had just heard right then. He charged straight towards Mackenzie’s hospital room and saw Mackenzie nursing her daughter, draped in a pink blanket. Kincaid’s friends were not far behind, and they too saw the little bundle of joy in Mackenzie’s arms. "It’s about time you showed up.” Mackenzie said as she passed the baby on to Kincaid, which he took gently. A smile crossing his face looking down at the new life that had come into the world. A new life he was happy to call his daughter.

Kincaid looked down at the little baby he held in his arms. She was the most beautiful thing to him right now, next to his wife of course, and Kincaid knew that there wasn’t anything that he wouldn’t do for that child. Looking over to his wife Mackenzie he asked her "So what do we name her?”

Mackenzie took the baby in her arms and smiled at her. She knew the name she wanted and Kincaid knew as well. He had two grandmothers who he idolized greatly, with one of them being a steady rock for him when his home life deteriorated as a child. He wanted to honour both of them and he knew the best way to do it.

"Elizabeth Marie.” Mackenzie said. "That was what you always wanted to name a daughter wasn’t it?”

Kincaid shook his head as tears flowed freely down his face. He accepted the name and hugged both his wife and child thankful for allowing them to live despite being brought into the world among a cesspool of death.

Right now nothing else mattered. If there was someone who was ready to attack he didn’t care. Right now Jeffrey Kincaid was a man with a family, and there was nothing he wouldn’t do for them. He would protect them no matter what. His wife and daughter, they were his world now. And as Kincaid and Mackenzie’s friends came into the hospital room they all looked down welcoming Elizabeth Marie Kincaid into the world.

In the hallway Kincaid sat. His chair was just outside Mackenzie’s room where she slept and across from where his newborn daughter lay in her incubator sleeping.

Kincaid stared at the fragile new life sleeping before him. A life he brought into a world that wasn’t even her own. The realization brought him to remember why he and his friends came to this universe to begin with. The threat Shadow warned him about.

~Which one?~ Kincaid asked himself.

He felt there were more than just the dragons and the ninjas that everyone found themselves facing. He remembered looking up at the Shadowboxes and thought he sensed something familiar. Familiar, yet evil. Looking out the corner of his eye Sarah walked down the corridor to sit across from Kincaid.

“How’s the new dad?” Sarah asked.

Kincaid smiled as he heard the Gold Night Ranger ask the question, which seemed to carry an element of humour in it as if knowing the answer.

“Dad’s had a hard day.” Kincaid said. “And there will be more to come.” Pausing he then asked “You ready to do what we discussed?”

“I’ll have to get David and Ken out of bed. They fell asleep on some empty hospital beds. So did Cassandra and Bruce.” Sarah answered.

Kincaid understood. “We’ve all been taxed to the limit today.”

“Speaking of taxing,” Sarah said. “Don’t you think doing this will tax our own powers? I mean yeah they adapt and change with every threat we face, but don’t you think they are being taxed too far too fast?”

Kincaid heard Sarah’s words and agreed with them. “The powers and the Rangers themselves.”

“Then why do it?” Sarah asked.

Kincaid had asked himself that question many times.

“Our powers are unique, and in many cases feared. Such fear can be an effective control for some of the worst evils out there. But not every reality has Night Powers. I think some might be unable to support them. This one… I’m not sure what happened here.”

“Perhaps there is a reason why,” Sarah said. “I’m sorry if that sounds selfish but we didn’t sign on to be the multiverse’s police force. Or to be the personal enforcers of some guy that has appointed himself our mentor. We’ve pretty much worked without a Grid Master for a long time. What gives them the right to make this guy authority over us, or mentor, to us? And why should we have to act as torch lighters in realities where there isn’t even a torch?”

Kincaid sighed understanding Sarah’s question.

“Nothing.” Kincaid answered. “But he doesn’t ask me as a Grid Master, or mentor. He asks me as a person who cares. He sees something wrong and wants to help.”

“But with us it’s like if we don’t do this a universe is doomed,” Sarah answered. “We can’t be everywhere. We shouldn’t be everywhere. We’re in danger of becoming those higher powers that interfere just because they can. And if we do, we lose what being a Night Ranger stands for.”

“In this case we may not have to,” Kincaid said. “If Aisha is any indication. As far as we know there are as many Carrier Rangers as there are Night Rangers, correct?” Sarah nodded. She didn’t understand the multiverse all that much, but she sought to know as much as she could. Kincaid then continued “From what I can gather the Carrier Ranger can access all aspects of the power and Carrier Zords.”

“But there’s no Night Powers here.” Sarah answered. “Or at least none we’ve been able to detect.”

“But the baseline materials to make them are here.” Kincaid said. “I can’t sense the powers, but I can feel the echo they left behind. We’re going to give them the potential to do so and trust that Aisha is strong enough to only do so if needed.”

He had chosen Aisha for a reason. She was less of a warrior and more of a protector despite her skills. She would be less likely to create the powers just for the sake of it. And as the holder of the Carrier Zords she was used to holding back until absolutely needed. For the use of her powers always marked an escalation of the battle.

“You want me, David and Ken to handle this don’t you?” Sarah then asked.

Kincaid nodded. “I can’t leave my family. Not now.”

“And I won’t ask you to,” Sarah said taking the three morphers from Kincaid. “Just give me and the boys an hour or so to sleep ourselves huh?”

Kincaid nodded understanding Sarah’s request. She too was beat and needed some rest. “An hour or so,” Kincaid said.

“Thanks,” Sarah said going to a room to lie down.

Kincaid laid back, watching the room where Elizabeth was sleeping. It seemed like everyone was tired tonight.

“Probably be more like ‘or so’,” Kincaid said as he figured it would be a while before David, Sarah and Ken left for their errand.

Four hours later, David McAllister-Keller, his sister Sarah and Ken Tanaka left the hospital. Sarah mentally kicked herself for taking so long. But they still had some time before daylight, so they went to work on their mission making sure their best foot was put forward.

Following the call of the night, the three Night Rangers found themselves standing across the street from the hotel some of the Rangers were staying at. The hotel was paid for by the Gaudeamas Corp. Realizing that the Rangers decided to spend a night out seeing the sights of San Francisco before returning, the three Night Rangers waited until they saw the person they were looking for arrive: Aisha Campbell.

Once the Rangers returned Sarah left a message for Aisha at the front desk saying that there was someone who wanted to meet her. They also asked her to come alone as it dealt with… what happened at the tournament. When Aisha read the message the others there thought they should follow, but the message insisted she come alone.

Sarah however did write a guarantee that if she was not back in ten minutes the other Rangers could call the police, or come after them themselves if they wanted. Aisha decided she would act in good faith and go alone. Stepping outside the hotel she rounded the corner where Sarah stood waiting, along with her brother and Ken.

“Hello Aisha.” Sarah said.

Aisha recognized the three before her. “You’re the three from that Team Night Ranger aren’t you?” Sarah nodded and the three showed her their morphers.

Aisha saw and knew why they had the name they did. “So you’re Rangers as well as ninjas?”

“They are,” Ken said pointing to David and Sarah. “I’m just an extreme fighter with anger issues. But we’re all Rangers.” Aisha felt a measure of calm facing the three Night Rangers, but also fear as she felt something dark about their powers. “Why are you here? What do you want with me?”

“We were asked… ” Sarah started to say as if trying to find the words that worked. “To help you. To help your world.”

Aisha asked “Help it do what?”

“Survive, maybe… Did you know that throughout the Multiverse there are many different types of Ranger? There are realities where the teams are made up of Rangers with multiple powers that they select as needed. There are realities where Kimberly holds every power ever associated with the Pink Ranger. There are worlds where Tommy has held the role of Red Ranger from the moment Zordon first recruited a team of Rangers until the day he retired. But while there are many variation, there are very few that can claim the title of Carrier Ranger.”


“Because the Carrier Zords are not normally linked to a single Ranger. Doing so changes their connection to the Power and weakens them. So they are rare. And a Ranger who is linked to all aspects of the Power and the Carrier Zords that are part of their team is even less common because the power they can bring to the battle makes their transformation an escalation. Your collection of powers is not the most numerous, nor is it the most powerful; but it could be one of the few that allows additional powers to be added. We would like to add the Night Ranger powers to that collection.”

“The Night Ranger powers?” Aisha asked.

Sarah launched into an explanation of what the Night Powers were and what they sought to do. “We need to give you a connection to that power. Without it… I can’t tell you that without it your world will suffer, but these powers no longer exist here and this is the only way for them to do so.”

“Why would I do that?” Aisha asked. “Aren’t they dangerous?”

“But they may be necessary,” David said. “It’s been said that you are going to come across some great evils in the future. You and your friends need to be ready. As far as we can tell the Night Rangers do not exist here. They cannot exist here, this reality just won’t support them.”

“It’s not a request we make lightly,” Ken said. “Just as you have your doubts about taking the power. But rest assured we wouldn’t be doing this if it wasn’t necessary, and if we didn’t think you couldn’t handle it.” Aisha listened to the words the Night Rangers had to say, but still wondered “What evils? What do we have to face?”

“That we can’t say,” Sarah said. “But you already saw a sample at the tournament. And more could be on the way. It won’t be long before we have to leave, and once we do so I don’t think we will be able to return.” Aisha remembered the Shadow Dragons and monsters that appeared at the tournament. She recalled how the Night Rangers had fought them.

“What do you want to do?”

“We can grant you access to the Night Powers. It might be enough for you to use them, it might not. And the choice to do so must be yours.”

Aisha considered the words heard. She was curious about what was to come, but she heard the sincerity in the voices of the three Night Rangers. They meant what they were saying. They wanted to help, and they wanted to grant her a portion of their power. A power Aisha could tell was great just by standing in the presence of the three Night Rangers.

“If the need is great as you can say, then yes,” Aisha said. “My friends and I have faced great evils in the past. And since Minion those evils have only gotten worse. My friends need help. And if what I saw at that tournament is what’s coming next I need to be ready.” David, Sarah and Ken smiled as they moved to circle Aisha.

“Don’t be afraid.” Sarah said. “This won’t take long.”

David, Sarah and Ken all surrounded Aisha as she felt a surge of power enter her. The Spirits of the Night from there reality established the connection, reaching out to make contact with the spirits of Aisha’s reality; there were not that many. Once the connection was established, Aisha could hear the voices in her mind as a dull whisper. They seemed to be part of her as the Powers of the Carrier Ranger were part of her now.

When she felt the power surge fade from her she found herself in a new set of civilian clothes. She was now dressed in a black leather jacket with black pants and boots. A brown t-shirt with gray lining completed the ensemble. The morpher on her wrist changed as well. A fourth button used to access a new set of powers.

“Well that’s new.” David said. “I mean we always got our clothes from stores. Here the wardrobe is provided.”

“The Carrier Ranger powers seem to be different.” Ken said. “But I do think she should wait before seeing what the Zeo and Astro Power settings do. Wouldn’t want her appearing naked now do we?” Aisha looked up at the three and asked: “What did you do to me?”

“You now have a new power setting,” Sarah said. “You now have access to the Night Powers of this universe, limited as they are.” Looking on her morpher she noticed the other three buttons accessing the Morphin, Zeo and Astro Powers were still on the morpher. Pressing the button for the Morphin Powers caused her clothes to change back to her normal clothes. Looking at the Zeo and Astro buttons Aisha thought about pressing them but decided to wait. First to get a new set of clothes for the Zeo setting if she needed them, and second an Astro Ranger uniform from Andros for the Astro Ranger setting.

“Do not use that power except in the most dire emergency,” Sarah warned.

They had not told Aisha the whole truth, but their concern was genuine. There was a reason why the Night Ranger powers of this reality were so weak. And if she drew attention to herself… well their research had revealed that things would not end well.

“When you need it, call the power and it will come to you,” Sarah said. “Take care.”

With that Sarah, Ken and David left Aisha alone, with her new powers. Powers she would not use until the time was absolutely necessary. when the situation was most dire. For she knew the power of Night Rangers was incredible and any Carrier Zord linked to those powers would be hard to control. It would require great will on her part.

Aisha would need that will in the times to come.

Far across the Universe they sensed the awakening. This could not be allowed, the abomination would not be allowed to take a hold ever again. They would wipe out the perversion and clean the stain from the Power.

“Call the Knights!”

The next morning Mackenzie was checked out of the hospital and Shadow stood waiting with a portal back to Kincaid’s home reality ready to go. But before they could leave Shadow had something to say. Looking at Kincaid’s face Shadow knew what had to be said.

“I’m sorry. You know that,” Shadow said. Kincaid didn’t react to Shadow’s words. Not a grunt. Not a nod. Not a word. “I know you should have been in that room for your daughter’s birth, and you weren’t. And I know… ” Shadow then broke off the sentence knowing no excuses could be made.

He wasn’t partially responsible for Kincaid not being in the room for his daughter’s birth. He was totally responsible. He kept sending him and the Night Rangers on missions. Keeping him away from his wife when she needed him most. True there were stories of soldiers being away from their wives when their kids were being born, but somehow those stories felt out of place when dealing with Kincaid.

“We did what you wanted,” Kincaid said as he remembered David, Sarah and Ken returning from the errand he sent them on. “The Carrier Ranger here now has a connection to the Night Powers in this world if she needs them.”

Shadow nodded but he knew Kincaid’s mind was on the matters of his family, and how he should have been in the room for the birth of his daughter.

“You should have been there. I kept you from being there,” was all Shadow said. “I thought using you and your Night Rangers for those missions was for a greater good. I still do.”

“I know,” Kincaid said. “You had your reasons for needing us.” Looking at Shadow he then said: “But bear this in mind. We are not your personal enforcers for the cause of good. There may be places in our universe that need us, and what do we do when the Night Rangers aren’t there because an inter-dimensional guardian of good needs us in another universe? Or something happens to our families, and again we are not there?”

Pausing Kincaid added “You can’t depend on us for every mission. Someone once said ‘If all one does is fight there’s never any time to heal’.” Looking at Mackenzie flanked by their friends Kincaid said “And we have a lot of healing to do. Our lives away from Rangering is part of that healing.”

Shadow nodded understanding Kincaid’s words and decided to look into other warriors from other realms. "So you all ready to return home?” Shadow said looking at Sarah, David, Ken, Cassandra, Bruce, Kincaid, Mackenzie, and their newborn child.


Kincaid and his team turned around before entering the portal to go home to see Leo and Karone looking at them.

"Look. I’m sorry if we are butting in at a bad time for you all, but if you are leaving for somewhere and you aren’t coming back anytime soon, then I really want to get this resolved now.” Leo said to Kincaid. "Just who are you and why were you giving me and Karone those looks before?”

Pausing for a moment Kincaid struggled to give an answer. "Let’s just say… remind me of two people I know. Same walk of life. Same stumbling blocks. Everything." Pausing he then said "Look after her will you? She’s on a dangerous path.”

With that Kincaid and the Night Rangers left. Leaving Leo and Karone with more questions than they had before.

Not far away Minion watched the Night Rangers leave. He smiled as he observed the exchange between Kincaid and Shadow, and noticed the friction between the two.

“So ‘Billy’,” Minion said biting down on the name as if saying who Shadow ‘really’ was. “You are using Kincaid for your own crusades, and you are keeping Kincaid from what is important to him. His family.” Minion thought of the ways to get at Kincaid the man instead of Kincaid the Ranger, and a few ideas came to mind. Dangerous ideas, that could well be a danger to him. The old saying of ‘Play with fire and you get burned’ came to mind. He then remembered the offer of the Ravolox informatio and the knowledge of time, space and reality it possessed. Perhaps reality could be… locked away. Sealed off. It wasn’t a possibility he would rule out.

And if Shadow went for Kincaid again… well perhaps Kincaid wasn’t who he should be targeting. Perhaps Shadow should feel Minion’s wrath. But if the need to go after Kincaid came about he could find a way to target him. If the risks were worth it.

The first thing that came to her was a breath of air. Next thing she saw was an ornate temple. Then came a voice. "Welcome back to the land of the living… Mature.”

Mature, who had finished looking her self over to find that she was alive and whole turned to see the figure of the voice that just spoke to her. "Who are you?”

"My name is Karla,” the Grey Witch spoke to the resurrected Hakkeshu of Light. "And there is much for us to discuss.”

As the Rangers, Terry and the Outsiders continued to discuss all they had seen at the tournament, Kat’s communicator beeped, and she excused herself to take the call. As Kat left the discussion continued.

“You fought well,” Tommy said.

Terry then responded with: "Maybe we’ll see you next year.” Terry then went to Alison and gave her a hug “Take care kid.”

“You too,” Alison said returning the hug. Andy, Joe, Mai and Mary also gave Alison a hug goodbye as Terry went to Kat.

“Keep practicing. You have a lot of potential, and you might need it.”

Kat said she would. With that Terry, Mai, Mary and the Lonely Wolves walked to where their van was located. They had to return to Southtown. This time they were driving back.

After the Lonely Wolves and their significant others left the Rangers decided to go their separate ways. Alison told Ashley she would see her later.

“I’m going to stop by Cassidy’s for a while. I’ll catch up.”

Ashley said she would see her later and went to Andros’s side, who was standing by Sabrina’s side as she was watching Adam and Tanya talking.

“Girl, you got it bad!” Ashley said referring to Sabrina’s gaze at Adam. Any time Adam looked to be turning her way she then turned to talk to Andros hoping Adam would think they were talking Astro Ranger business.

Adam however doubted that they were talking about Ranger business. Tanya also had her own suspicions. “If I didn’t know better I’d say the former Scorpina is crushing on you.”

“Crushing? On me?” Adam asked surprised. He didn’t see himself as ‘crushworthy’. Tanya however knew better, and could see how Sabrina could have a crush on Adam.

“Thousands of years old, and she knows a good man when she sees one.”

“But it’s you I’m with,” Adam said. Tanya then took Adam’s hands and smiled.

“Just don’t forget that,” she replied as she kissed Adam’s cheek.

Off to the side Cassie and Trini were saying their good byes.

“You fought well,” Trini said to Cassie.

Cassie nodded. “So did you.” Pausing Cassie added: “We can’t keep walking on egg shells around each other. Our families have a past, but we shouldn’t be haunted by it.”

“You’re right,” Trini said. “Our present is with the Power Rangers. We have that in common. We should focus on that.”

Cassie agreed. “Especially now.”

“And in the future… with what’s coming.” Trini added.

Cassie knew what Trini meant and offered her hand, which Trini gladly took.

“We look after each other, and our friends. For their sake, and ours.”

Cassie nodded.

The Morphin Rangers also said their goodbyes to the Outsiders.

Tommy and Lillian had the hardest goodbye to say, but she just said “We’ll see each other again.””

Samantha and Theresa also said their goodbyes telling one another to be careful.

“I have to tell the Doctor I’m going,” Samantha said. “I’m sure he’s more scared for me than I am for him.”

“Probably,” Terry said as she hugged her cousin and left with the other Outsiders.

Jason and Tommy watched the Outsiders leave as Jamie turned and gave Jason a final look and blew him a kiss… for luck.

“We’re going to need it,” Jason said as he caught the imaginary kiss from his girlfriend. “All of us.”

Soon all the Rangers headed for the Airport. They had lives to get back to before they would start their next mission.

A mission to liberate a planet.

Alison walked home to her grandfather’s house when she passed Pier 39 again. Deciding to take another look she walked to where the Fun Factory shop was located.

As she rounded the corner she found the shop was gone. There was only an empty shop. No sign. No merchandise. No lights. Nothing to indicate the store was there. There was no sign of the Popplewicks, or the mysterious JJ Chambers. Not that Alison, Cassie and Kat ever saw the man.

Alison then felt a whole wave of weird come over her. ~Shops don’t just disappear like that. Do they? And if there was a shop here, where did it go?~

More to the point Alison then asked ~And what did they want with Cassie?~

Vienna, Austria

The Fun Factory didn’t just disappear; it moved to a new location, literally. It had travelled across the world to the city of Vienna where it took the form of a penthouse with balcony. After the events in San Francisco, the Valeyard invited Minion and Kali for a brunch at the Fun Factory to finalize their future plans. Minion would find there was more to the Fun Factory than met the eye.

Once they went inside, the doorway led into a console room with a six-sided control console in the middle. Valeyard then moved the controls and a wheezing and groaning was heard indicating movement. Once the groaning stopped Valeyard then opened the door and the four villains soon found themselves not in San Francisco anymore, but a new city entirely.

“Welcome to Vienna,” the Valeyard said showing them the city. Before them was a balcony with a table set for five. The table before them had plates of eggs, scones, croissants, sausages and many other delicacies from around the world. “Anyone care for brunch?” the Valeyard asked taking a seat at the head of the table. The other four villains sat down as well looking to indulge in the brunch Valeyard had apparently prepared.

All of them feasted in anticipation of what may come. “Interesting,” Mrs Popplewick commented. “Do all humans eat like this?”

“Only those in higher circles,” Valeyard said. “Those of supposed dignity and grace above the common classes.”

Kali then asked a question the others had been waiting for him to answer. “Why meet us here? Why transport us here?”

“Why Vienna?” Valeyard asked intrigued by the question. “This city is unlike any cit. It is where good and evil can meet without repercussions. It is a neutral zone. A crossroads if you will where cultures co-mingled.”

Mr Popplewick looked interested in the Valeyard’s words. “Co-mingled?”

Valeyard nodded. “In ancient times this is where the Holy Roman Empire intersected with the Ottoman Empire. And in more modern times it was where the Warsaw Pact nations of Russia and NATO interacted. Some of the most monstrous evil of human history even came here. Adolf Hitler and his Nazi party come to mind.”

“Evil and culture,” Kali said sipping a glass of wine. “Interesting concept.”

“I think there are some dark beings known to appreciate the finer things in life,” the Valeyard said.

Minion however was not in the spirit of the breakfast. While he did have some of it his mind was focused on what was to be done with the Power Rangers. Rangers that had now grown to four teams. Three official and one unofficial.

And there was also the matter of Jeff Kincaid and his Night Rangers. Power that could pose a serious threat to everyone’s operations. Minion then asked “Tell me again what this planned ‘reckoning’ is supposed to be.”

“It is a confrontation among higher powers and the younger races of the universe,” Valeyard said. “It is to let them know their time is over and their influence in the universe is no longer welcome. It is one of those events that must happen although the exact nature of events leading up to it and the potential fallout are unclear.”

Minion then asked: “Does this include the Triad as well as the ‘Q’ and these ‘Lords of Kobol’?”

“I believe it will be safe to say that these forces will be exiled beyond the boundary of this reality, and will not be allowed to return. There are greater forces at work here. They will leave or this reality will crumble, there is no other way.”

Minion smiled under the mask he had reacquired. His Earth clothes tucked away in the travel cabinet Minion brought from San Francisco.

“Perhaps the reckoning should happen,” Minion said. “If it keeps the Triad out of this universe… and Kincaid and his Night Rangers.” Valeyard nodded. “Another reason I chose this city is because of it’s crossroads appeal. For that is where we all stand now. A crossroads, with many directions before us. Our destinations may differ, but there are ways for us to get there.”

“And the cabinet that you sent me, that was one of those ‘directions’?” Minion asked. Valeyard nodded. “As I’m sure you’re aware you will be approaching a ‘fixed point’ in your time line. But there are ways around it if you’re careful.”

“I’m not one for being careful,” Minion answered. Looking at the cabinet he then said “But if the price is right I may make… an exception.” Valeyard smiled as he knew Minion was considering opportunities. He too looked at the cabinet as if looking back on a memory.

“This cabinet came from the 51st Century where people were known for… dancing,” the Valeyard explained. “It belonged to a criminal named Magnus Creel who used it to go back in time where he masqueraded as the Chinese God Weng-Chiang. The cabinet is also powered by Zeta Radiation which is a key element in… UAE monster manufacturing. Especially if the monsters are created from actual people. But for use of time and space travel… very dangerous.”

“Unless you’re already a monster,” Minion said with a touch of sarcasm. “Then the effects are minimal.” Valeyard smiled at Minion’s comment. The villain knew humour. He found that Minion also knew power when he saw it, and the Valeyard knew Minion saw power in the Fun Factory.

“This building, it is your ship isn’t it?”

“Something I picked up on my last trip to Gallifrey,” the Valeyard said. “And with a working Chameleon Circuit I can disguise it as anything.” Pausing he then added “Including a door in an office on Eltar.”

“Eltar?” Minion asked impressed that they would have a means to be inside the Capital world of the Galactic Council, especially with its vaunted security. Minion then looked at the Popplewicks and nodded in understanding as he asked “Just whose office are we talking about here?”

As if on cue the Popplewicks reached up to their foreheads and unzipped their human skins revealing their true forms. That of Councillor S’Hera and Darkonda. Minion studied the two councilmen and smirked

“You two don’t seem like typical councillors.”

“Who said we had to be,” Darkonda said with a sneer. “We just have… different approaches to doing our duties.”

Minion nodded. “I’m sure. I take it you also have a plan for dealing with the Rangers?”

“And their mentor Zordon,” S’Hera then said.

“With more to come,” the Valeyard added as he made his way back through the door of the console room and down towards a flight of stairs that seemed to go down into the Fun Factory. After motioning for S’Hera, Darkonda, Minion and Kali to follow the Valeyard then led his party down the stairs.

As they descended Kali asked: “Why all the plans to bring the Rangers down. Won’t one be enough?”

“Namely yours?” Valeyard then asked.

Kali went red with embarrassment, something Minion relished.

“The track record of the Rangers pretty much demonstrates that we cannot depend solely on one plan. The Rangers have the unfortunate tendency to recover from whatever is thrown at them. Minion however has had the best success thus far.”

“For all the good it did him.” Kali sneered.

Minion was about ready to strike her but the Valeyard waved his hand as if telling him to remain calm.

“But he succeeded like no other villain had. Now picture the Rangers if they are on the defensive from SEVERAL types of Minion-like attacks.”

“Attacks that would weaken resources and resolve,” S’Hera said as if understanding. “Attacks that could bring about the End of the Rangers.”

“No force can stay on a defensive like that forever,” Valeyard said. “Eventually the Rangers spirit will break and they will fold. But we must ensure these attacks continue.”

Minion also understood but then asked: “And this has what to do with me?”

“You have knowledge and resources now you didn’t have before,” Valeyard said. “And soon you will have means to strike at the Rangers from beyond your defeat. Like a spectre that continues to haunt them. All we have to do is make sure the haunting continues… until the end.” Finally the party came to a door that when opened revealed a room full of technology and wonders none of the villains in the room had seen before or could believe existed.

“Welcome to my workshop,” the Valeyard said motioning to the devices around him. Devices from different worlds and different times. Devices even Minion had not heard of. He would have loved to know just what every device did but Valeyard made his way to a tarp covering something that looked like a capsule. Valeyard then spoke shaking Minion out of his technological amazement. Now was the time to state the plan.

“There will come a time when Dark Specter will fall.” Valeyard said. “Like Zordon’s end, Dark Specter’s fall from power is a fixed point in time. How it happens is up for debate. He could be destroyed or he might just walk away a broken man, but it must happen”

“And that will leave a vacuum of power to be filled,” Darkonda said. “A vacuum I plan to fill. Whether on the throne or as a power behind it.”

“There are several… replacements that will seek to fill the void,” Valeyard said as if correcting Darkonda. “The Troobian Empire led by Emperor Grumm. The Sisterhood of Evil. Lothor…‚� perhaps not Lothor. But there will be contenders, and rivals for the position of Grand Monarch of evil.”

“Dark Specter made out a list of girls with potential to serve as his heir,” Darkonda advised. “He had me search for a contender. One… I failed to acquire, only for her to embrace her destiny eventually.”

“And now there are two heirs,” Valeyard said. “But how long will they serve? And were they the only two selected?” Minion and Kali wondered what Valeyard meant. He quickly explained. “Karone has been a Ranger for too long to serve as an heir to evil. And Cyane, well, did not equal the potential Karone would have had if her selection had happened. Hence the need to look at alternate means. And other prophesies to consider.”

“Other prophesies?” Kali asked.

Valeyard nodded. “One of which Darkonda has helped bring into being.” Valeyard then ripped off a nearby drop cloth revealing a capsule. Inside it was a girl with the same face as Karone and Cyane, except she was wearing a red wig and looked like she had armoured components all over her body.

“There were other girls on the list,” Darkonda said, sneering at the female. “I had my eye on one, who ironically enough was an Astro Defender.” Darkonda remembered the last battle of the Astro Defenders as he teleported the Pink Defender away from the battle as she was caught in the explosion that claimed her teammates. Her power took too much of a beating that she couldn’t fight back as Darkonda overwhelmed her defences and she was taken into darkness. A darkness that involved cybernetics and the cryotube that she currently lay in.

The girl in the cryotube was Ayla, former Pink Astro Defender. Now she lay in stasis with mechanical implants attached to her body. The name on her capsule read Andromeda.

“Part of a prophesy regarding Princess’s of Evi,.” the Valeyard said. “Where instead of two there were four, with a fifth supposedly causing unbalance. This is the one that is evil through technology.”

“Five Princesses?” Minion asked. <"There were five stated in the prophesy," Valeyard answered. "Evil by nature. Evil by nurture. Evil by technology. Evil by magic. And evil by choice. The current Astronema fills the Evil by nurture requirement while Artemis has become evil by choice.

“And I have ‘Evil by technology’.” Darkonda answered.

The Valeyard nodded then turned to Minion. “And now we ask you to provide the fourth Princess – Evil by nature.”

“Me?” Minion asked. “What do I have to do?”

The Valeyard motioned to a machine standing off to the corner. The same machine Cassie Chan placed her hand in before the tournament. “Just place your hand in the machine.”

“And it will read my fortune?” Minion asked sarcastically.

Valeyard answered “No, it will take a sample of your gene structure and resequence the sample into a new life form where you serve as parent.” Minion looked at the Valeyard stunned. Valeyard then said “This is to serve as a further continuance of your legacy. An heir if you will. All it will cost you is a gene sample.”

“What do you have to lose?” Kali sneered.

Minion gave Kali a glare as he removed a glove from his left hand and stuck it in the sequencer. He felt the cut immediately and after a few seconds he removed his hand.

“A device I picked up from Messaline one time,” Valeyard said. “It allowed entire generations of armies to be created.” Soon the machine stopped and the door to a nearby chamber opened. Minion looked at the chamber and saw a girl come out.

She was quite the beauty. Her hair was adorned by a purple wig. In her hand was a staff with an arrowhead on the tip. The face was like that of Astronema and Artemis. But Minion could tell the evil within. Evil based on himself.

“May I present Astronoma. Evil by nature. And the daughter of Minion.”

On that Astronoma walked over to Minion and smirked “Hello father,” she said as her eyes glowed a sinister shade of red. Much like Minion’s had done.

“And this is the continuation of my legacy?” Minion asked. “This… girl?”

“She’ll do better than those Psycho Rangers,” Valeyard said. “Not that they won’t have their uses. But you are right. She will need to prove herself.” Soon Astronoma found herself surrounded in a corridor of light bathed in ultrasound. The sound caused her intense pain bringing her to unconsciousness. When she was down the corridor shut off.

“She will need some more training. Nothing reality immersion can’t cure,” Valeyard said as he picked up Astronoma and placed her in another stasis chamber. “That leaves only one left. Taken from… another sample earlier.” With that the Valeyard made his way to another chamber ready to unveil the contents within.

“And now: ‘Evil by magic’,” the Valeyard said as he opened up the last chamber. Inside was a girl dressed in white. White head piece. White mini skirt with white boots. She reflected Asian nationality, but her face seemed reminiscent of Cassie. Not like Karone’s as the other two Princess’s had been.

“This princess called for something a little different,” the Valeyard said. “This is Maria Chan. Cassie Chan’s… daughter.”

The introduction brought Kali to a fit of rage. Much to Minion’s amusement.

“You would bring another Kusanagi into existence?” Kali shouted with fury.

Valeyard said in a calming voice: “You miss the joke.”

“What joke?” Kali asked.

The Valeyard explained. “The Kusanagi flame was said to be a flame of light and good while the Yagami flame is that of darkness. But Maria was created from Kusanagi DNA, and is programmed to be evil. So… “

“The Kusanagi is done in by her own blood and power,” Kali said as she reared back her head and laughed. And soon everyone else was laughing too.

Except Minion… who had his own thoughts.

Night Ranger reality.

In their home in Port Clinton Jeffrey and Mackenzie Kincaid looked in at their daughter, sleeping soundly in her crib. "She’s so beautiful,” Mackenzie said. "Like her mother,” Kincaid added. "Shall we get ready for bed?”

Mackenzie flashed a look that said "Now?”

"I have a feeling that she’ll be awake soon enough. Best to get as much sleep as we can now before we don’t get any later.”

Mackenzie nodded and headed off to the bedroom before turning back to Kincaid. "Aren’t you coming?” she asked. "In a minute. There’s something I want to check out.” Mackenzie nodded and headed off to the bedroom while Kincaid activated his teleporter and transported to Iocaste where the Book of Zordon lay. As he opened it he looked at the pages before him and saw the prophesy he was looking for.

Kincaid stood before the book of Zordon, mesmerized by the prediction that he had just read. So taken in by what he read he didn’t even notice Shadow appear in the room. "Kincaid?” he asked.

The Night Ranger gave no answer. He simply stared at the page in front of him.

Shadow then walked forward and called Kincaid’s name again. He turned and looked the Shadow Grid Ninja straight in the face and asked one question deadpan. "Were you and your friends playing your games again?”

Shadow seemed taken aback by Kincaid’s question. "Kincaid what do you mean?”

"It’s a simple question. During this whole Orochi clan business were you just playing games with me, my friends, and my wife? Where they could have been killed?” Kincaid seemed to be very agitated right now and Shadow had no idea why.

"Kincaid you remember that Mackenzie wanted to come with you, and you accepted the invitation left for you and your Night Rangers,” Shadow explained.

"That was before I read the book. Would you like to see what I read?” Kincaid then showed Shadow the page of the book he was reading. It was a vague prophesy like all the prophesies were and Shadow had no way of knowing what it meant.

The storm draws closer

A new enemy shall arise as a familiar darkness spreads and a forgotten threat returns, more fearsome than before.

An innocent lost by neglect, the blank slate left untouched shall bear evil’s mark once more.

The darkness will claim the night as the servant takes his place as the new master.

Only the sacrifice of childish innocence will set the night free.

Else the End shall come in all consuming fire.

Shadow looked up from the page confused. This was the first time he looked at the Book of Zordon, and he had no idea what the prophesy meant. But the look on Kincaid’s face reflected anger and concern. Not for himself though, but for his wife and newborn daughter who was born in that realm.

Shadow then nodded in understanding as awareness came to him. "Ah yes the Emperor.”

"Adam’s team has more than enough to deal with, and so do we.” Kincaid stated. "They don’t need another monster raining terror on them like the Emperor is now. Somehow I think the less said the better right now. Besides, all we have to go on is a vague reading in the book. Not much to work with.”

Shadow nodded then asked Kincaid the next question. "I saw you fight against the Dark Assassins and Dragons. I had never seen you fight like that before. It was like you were a madman. What happened?” Kincaid paused a moment then spoke.

"I don’t know.” Kincaid said. "But what I do know is that I’m not putting my family at risk again like that. Don’t call for me to go to that universe again unless it’s absolutely necessary.” "Kincaid?” Shadow asked wondering what he meant.

“I have other things to deal with. Like I said before you can’t call me for every problem you have.” Shadow nodded indicating that he would then teleported away. Kincaid went to his bedroom where his wife and daughter were waiting for him.

He wanted to spend some time with them before he made a journey whe would rather not take. There was some bad news he had to deliver.

A wheezing and groaning was heard in a nearby corridor. A second later S’Hera and Darkonda appeared around the corner, only to come face to face with Sygnus. “Councillors S’Hera and Darkonda. Fancy meeting you here.”

“Something we can do for you Sygnus?” S’Hera asked not hiding her distain for the Triforian representative. He had put forth too much resistance on the council to their plans, and the resistance was approaching a level to where Sygnus was becoming a threat. A threat that needed to be dealt with soon.

“Oh no,” Sygnus said. “I just haven’t seen you in the council building for a while. I was just… concerned that something may have happened to you.”

“Something happens to all of us Triforian,” Darkonda said. “Doesn’t mean it’s an emergency.”

“Yes, shame if there was an emergency,” Sygnus said. “Especially as we are supposed to be on duty for those we are supposed to serve on a constant basis. I would hate to think what would happen if any of us were unable to be present at council meetings the moments our people need us.”

Darkonda then got into Sygnus’s face and asked: “Is there something you would like to say?”

“Ye,.” Sygnus said. “You and S’Hera had not been seen around the council building for a whole day. I was starting to get… concerned.”

“What Councillor Darkonda and I do is not concern of yours,” S’Hera pointed out.

“Unless it threatens Triforian interests,” Sygnus added. “And Earth is where King Trey is trying to recover from his sustained injuries.”

“If you can call cryo-stasis recovering,” Darkonda retorted. “Rest assured, if Triforia is threatened you will know about it soon enough.” Sygnus took notice of Darkonda’s veiled threat and walked on down the corridor past a door in the corridor. A door that was in fact a TARDIS.

And looking out that doorway was the Valeyard believing Sygnus was going to be a problem. A problem to be dealt with soon.

Minion’s Island, Prime Reality

One Year Ago

When Minion arrived home only an hour had passed. Silvo, Brasso, and Bronzo had not even noticed that he had been gone. “Leave me,” he said as he went to a view screen to see how the torture of the Zeo Rangers was progressing.

Not much had changed. The tortures were the same, and they seemed close to breaking. But his mind then turned to all that he had seen. And all that was apparently to come. Moments relating to him, moments in the present, and moments beyond.

As Minion looked at the tortured Rangers he thought back to his final conversation with Kali, before he departed from the future he had been to.

~Minion had stepped out of the Valeyard’s ship, which seemed to be disguised as a regular door, and made his way to the travel cabinet that was waiting for him to take him to his own realm. Kali followed along looking to get in one final parting shot.

“So how does it feel Minion?” Kali asked gloating. “To be merely a footnote in the Rangers’ history. To be defeated by the Power Rangers like all the other villains before them? Like so many others will? Only for me and my god Orochi to be the one to destroy them?” Minion felt his anger boil at Kali’s taunting and finally he could hold it in no longer.

He turned on her and delivered a blow filled with the raw power and magic that had made him such a threat to the Rangers. It was a power he had not used since his arrival, and as soon as he touched the Power once more, the grip on his sanity started to slip as anger threatened to take control once more. He hit Kali with all the rage and anger he could muster, demonstrating why he was the master and she was still his to control if he desired. It was only because he pulled the power at the last moment that she escaped unhurt. She would certainly remember her place.

“Valeyard might have stopped me before Kali,” he told her, “but YOU ARE MINE! And should you forget that again, you will not be around to regret it. I admit you have gone beyond just being another replica of Trini; how far beyond and exactly what you have become remains the question.” Pausing he then added, “But bear this in mind. The coming of your god Orochi. Your acceptance of this dark heritage that has so miraculously come into being. Your very life. None of it would have happened without me. I brought you into existence. Remember that and god or no god, I can send you back to oblivion.”

For the first time Kali was shaken. She realised that her pride had been at fault and that in attacking her, Minion had corrected a problem before it grew too bad.

“Yes, I am your legacy Minion,” Kali said. “That which you have left behind. That which shall destroy these troublesome Rangers. None of this would have been possible without you, and I’m sure Orochi will thank you for that. And I promise… I will succeed where you have failed.”

“I may yet succeed,” Minion then said. “For if there is one thing I have learned from the Valeyard is that there is more than one way to strike at one’s enemies. Even if you are not able to do the striking yourself.” Minion then turned to the cabinet to walk in. Turning back he gave Kali one last look and said “Rest assured I will be looking into this Orochi prophesy myself. And I hope you are sure about what you read.”

Minion entered the travel cabinet and the cabinet then took him home. Kali turned and saw the Valeyard’s ship also gone. Alone Kali went back to her temple to await the birth of her child. The child that would lead to the birth of the dark god Orochi.

Minion then left the torture chamber to work in his private study area. He needed knowledge and he needed it quickly. He called up information on the King of Fighters tournament, as well as the names Bogard, Howard, Kusanagi and Yagami. He would then look into what he could gather about the god Orochi and the prophesy leading to his birth. In retrospect, he figured the Bogards and their allies were the Shadow Triad’s version of the Justice League.

Minion then called up the image of the other tortured heroes he had in his Prison Dimension. The Flash, Martian Manhunter, Green Lantern, the Teen Titans, Wonder Woman and others. In the back of his mind Minion wondered why these heroes saw fit to intervene in his affairs. After all his grievances were against the Power Rangers. Not these heroes, at least not right away. Initially he dismissed the intervention of the Justice League as flattery that they would interfere.

But with the appearance of Terry Bogard and his friends Minion felt no such flattery. He wondered what force would bring them to interfere with his business. He got his answer with the Triad, but he also figured Terry and his friends would be a problem in the future, despite his own foes adding their own ‘opposition’ to him for reasons of their own.

Minion had to admit there was potential in the Yagami power. Or rather in how Kali proposed it be used. To lead to the resurrection of a dark God, but also to corrupt one of the greatest Rangers the Rangers ever had. Trini as a creature of evil was an entertaining thought. Not a replica, but the genuine Trini being turned to evil.

~You had your chance Tommy. Now it’s time for another to be turned.~ Minion thought with a smile. He then realized he would need more power and knowledge and remembered the data crystal the Valeyard had given him. Inserting it into the reader on his computer Minion found the co-ordinates on where the underground Ravolox Chamber was located.

Minion decided would leave for where the Chamber was located as soon as he was finished finding out about Orochi and the Yagami power. The power of the Time Lords was another opportunity for knowledge and power that was too great to pass up. He took the huge data recorder the Valeyard had provided for him to copy the Ravolox data and considered the device. He also considered what all he saw and the choices before him.

The Valeyard had said that Minion could use the information in the chamber, but he could not advertise that he had been there, as the chamber still had a role to play in future events. Essentially Minion had to be as quiet as a cat burglar in obtaining the information due to risk damaging events that had to happen. Events that may not happen if Minion went the wrong way with the wrong decision.

But even with the Ravolox Chamber knowledge Minion had much to think about. He saw the Rangers tortured before him and his mind turned to disgust at the thought that this moment could be taken away from him. By a force that he did not know about, could not detect, and wasn’t sure existed. Another Ranger team, manipulation by God like beings, time itself, regardless what was to happen his defeat was inevitable. His mind then turned to Cassidy Bridges, the Silver Zeo.

Was she connected to the force that was to defeat him? Was she at one point. And if that force was another Ranger team, does that team still exist? Minion then looked off in a corner and saw an energy bubble standing on a podium. The bubble containing a pocket reality that held six individuals that reminded him of Power Rangers. A bubble Minion could pop at any time. ~Later,~ he thought.

The bubble reminded Minion of the God like beings called the Q, the Lords of Kobol and the Shadow Triad. Three groups that fought on a new battleground outside the conventional war zone. Where the very fabric of reality was being twisted and turned for amusement with others looking to stop it or twist it another way. Minion did not care for the actions of the three God forces, but they did open his mind on the different possible fields of battle, and figured the Chamber data would be a great way to make use of those ‘alternate’ battlegrounds.

~I will not limit myself to two dimensional thinking.~ Minion thought as he remembered the reference in some movie Even villains spent time at the movies. They helped conquerors learn more about the people they sought to subjugate.

Minion then thought of his Psycho Rangers. Looking back on them he realized they had turned into disappointments. ~In more ways than one.~ Some were embracing new identities and power, and still failing at destroying the Rangers, while those that did not take on new identities looked to be pale shadows of the force they once were. If what the Valeyard said was true there were barely enough Psycho Rangers to amount to a standard Ranger team. A team with no true leader, as Biilly seemed to be a disappointment to him from what he heard from Kali.

“Kali.” Minion said as he thought of the replica that was once Triini, and the disrespect she had shown him. She had proven that his creations could be competent and ambitious. A dangerous combination he sort to avoid. He would make changes to the Psycho Rangers, ensuring that without his guidance they would never reach their potential.

He thought of her and again of Terry and his friends again as he asked. “What role did they serve other than being a poor man’s Justice League?” Minion knew they had no place in his plans, nor the Triad that placed them there. He resented the presence the fighters, and the Triad, in the universe. The Bogards were only there because the Triad decided to tie them to the Ranger destiny in certain ways. Minion then thought he should wipe them out of existence if he could. Make the choice and act on it so that Terry Bogard and his friends never interfered in his plans. ~Better yet, never existed.~ he mentally added.

Pausing he then realized, “But then I’d lose the plan she’d have to defeat the Rangers.” A plan Minion had to admit… sounded tempting. And all he had to do was make a choice to ensure if it happened, or didn’t.

“Turn left, or turn right.” Minion said aloud considering the choice he had, and the power he had through that choice. He also considered the other power weapons in his arsenal. The travel cabinet in the corner, and the Ravolox data he would soon acquire. Not to mention the words the Valeyard had said.

“Sometimes the greatest threat to our enemies is the legacy we leave behind.” Minion knew what the Valeyard meant, and how the gifts and knowledge he had acquired were how Minion could accomplish just what the Valeyard’s words meant.

He had already ensured his influence would be felt in that world’s future through the creation of Astronoma, but he thought of Kali and wondered if he couldn’t do more. He would look at the Orochi myth and see how he could influence events to his advantage. ~And perhaps get a little revenge against her from beyond the grave.~ he thought to himself as he remembered Kali’s strike against him, as well as her taunts. ~Don’t think you will not pay for those… Triini.~ .

Minion also watched the tortured Rangers on the screen and seethed as he knew the legacy of the Rangers would not stop with the Zeo and Morphin Rangers. There would be other teams to come. Some of those members he saw at the tournament. He had to ensure a legacy that would effect them as well. He remembered the boy, Leo Corbett, with the girl Karone. Minion knew being a Ranger was in his future. And those four other warriors. They too were Shadows of the Future brought to a crossroads.

Shadows to be eclipsed. In one way or another. Kali was one way, the creation of Astronoma was another. But could there be other ways?

~Perhaps that was why the Valeyard wanted me to have the Ravolox knowledge.~ he thought. ~And why he wants the acquisition kept quiet… as no one would see it coming when the… time came.~ Minion smiled at the joke made, but knew the point that was made as well.

~Very well… Kali. Fulfil your plan. But don’t think I won’t have an influence.~ Minion thought as he looked at the tortured Rangers again. New possibilities in his mind.

Turning off the video monitor Minion told his sentries that he would be gone for a while, but he would return. “I have some preparations to make,” he said as he went to a chest off to the side. Inside were a series of pistols Minion thought of toying the Rangers with.

The plan was to take the beaten Rangers and have them bear weapons against him. They would try to muster one shot against him. A shot that he planned to break their spirit with as it would have not impacted and Minion would have finished off the Rangers himself. Reaching for the pistols he then remembered what the Valeyard said about ‘fixed points’, and how they had to happen.

Minion’s defeat was one such fixed point. He wondered: ~Do the blasters lead to that defeat? Does the shot go wrong?~ For a moment Minion hesitated. Somehow he knew in the back of his mind something was going to happen with the blasters. Something that would happen soon. Something that could not be predicted, nor what could happen next.

~The End of the Rangers may not happen,~ Minion thought. ~Not by my hand. Not by anyone’s.~ The End of the Rangers was something Minion HAD to make sure happened. And if taunting the Rangers with a free shot ensured that it happened by either his hand or another’s, then he would offer it.

After all, he was one of the few who knew the grand design that was in place. The Rangers didn’t, and Minion felt secure in that knowledge.

~I’ll offer them their ‘free shot’. But not yet,~ Minion thought as he went towards his travel cabinet thinking beyond his immediate future… and the events planned in it. Events he could have a presence in.

Minion smiled as he thought that sometimes the greatest legacy one could leave is what is left behind for the future.

And Minion would leave something behind for the future of the Rangers.

For if there was one or two things that he and the Valeyard agreed upon was that the end of the Rangers, and the death of Zordon, had to happen.

Unfortunately he failed to notice the black figure that leapt from the shadows. Suddenly such thoughts were gone.

“The walls between the world are growing sturdier,” the Valeyard observed. “Minion will not be able to return here. Even the cabinet will not allow his return.”

“So he will never see if Kali’s plan succeeded,” the black figure guessed. “Why did you bring him here then?”

Valeyard laughed. “Oh that was not for his benefit. His path is set. I did it for you my friend. Minion’s actions will lead to the creation of this reality whether he desires it or not. The only way he could have prevented that was to stop his plans, something he could never do. But I needed you to see and to understand what I offered him without the rage and the madness. So that you could make a choice: remain here or follow Minion and pick up where he left off.”

A pair of red eyes glowed as he considered the Valeyard. He was Minion. Not the Minion that had left minutes earlier. No this was a version of Minion that had been created after Minion’s destruction. He was an attempt to correct an impossible shatter point in existence. His story had already concluded yet he like the reality he was born from still remained.

“Kali is the future of this reality,” Valeyard told him. “But you have the potential to become the future of the place where it all started. You might be a wraith, but creating a new body is not beyond you, given all the hints I provided.”

“And Minion?”

“Minion’s fate is lost to his own insanity,” Valeyard explained. “There is nothing to be done for him except to make it swift.”

“And this reality?”

“Will continue. It’s destruction was never really an issue. In time it will become just another reality where the war between good and evil, existence and void continue to play out. Once the walls are raised and the so called higher powers leave.”

Minion fixed him with a piercing stare. It was clear that he suspected something. Valeyard decided to reveal a minor secret.

“This reality continues because of one man, a man who needs to be kept locked away due to the danger he represents. This reality for its great size is a very comfortable cage that he doesn’t know exists. And so long as he remains here, it’s existence is guaranteed.”

“And if he leaves?” Minion pressed.

“Fear not,” Valeyard assured him. “Steps have been taken to make sure a part of him will never leave. Now, it is time for you to make your choice. The cabinet is still active and in our state you could slip across. When you do so, simply touch Minion and all the adjustments made to his mind will be removed, sending him back to his previous state.”

Minion nodded. A chance for a new existence was too great an opportunity after years as a spirit. He would take it.

He drifted through the wall between realities and spotted his prey. Though little more than a shadow he lunged at the real Minion.

Minion was a united soul, one hundred percent complete. He was unique in the multiverse. The shadowy Minion that attacked him was a piece of that soul, shattered by an event that had yet to occur. The circumstances were impossible, the fallout disastrous as the shadow Minion delivered a strike to himself.

The damage was unnoticeable on the physical level. But on a subconscious level Minion knew he had been attacked and lunged out at himself, breaking the unity. And with that, the task was done. The Shatter Point had been reached and the story could continue.


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