Disclaimer: The Power Rangers are property of Saban,
Inc. I don't own them in any way, and I am not making a profit out of
this. There is something from the video game Soul Caliber in here as well
(a fighting style) and that's property of Namco. Last is a homage to another
show I don't own. It's pointed out at the end if you miss it.
Author's notes: Before you start reading, please be aware that I am somewhat of a Power Ranger purist and none of my fanfictions will be on PR Zeo, PR Turbo, PRiS, or PRLG. Also, this is NOT a "parallel universe" story (that's just a plot device in the beginning.) Rated PG for language, and first in the series. This is my first MMPR fanfic, but if you have ever read my writing, you know I'm a little less than "so-so" at everything but plot and plot-twists, and plot development. In other words, please follow the story and not the actual wording. Finally, although this is the first of a series, the stories that will follow this are not true sequels, but rather, continuations.
Buildings crumbled everywhere, as the sky turned was a hideous red. The ground was lifeless, with not so much as a blade of grass sprouting in the dirt. Small fires dotted the landscape, and bodies lay where they had fallen, never to be disturbed again. Armageddon had fallen across the world, and there was no one left.
Well, almost no one thought the lone figure standing in what was once the city of Angel Grove. He crouched in front of one of the bodies. His gloved hand grasped the handle of a dagger imbedded in the corpse's chest, and pulled it out. Wanting to clean off the blade, Green Ranger took the dagger to a nearby geyser of water, the result of a fire hydrant being knocked over. As he held the blade in the stream, he had the first real chance to ponder exactly what had happened in the last few hours. It wasn't really all that complicated.
Gorganus is dead. he thought, as he remembered the vile being that the Power Rangers had battled countless times. .And I'm the last living thing on the planet. He looked back at the body he had pulled his weapon from as he dried the dagger off and put it in it's sheath on his back. .Because of a traitor.
The Black Ranger had made sure that the others had returned to Earth before himself, and he used the very doomsday weapon that they had fought to stop. He had left to gloat over the bodies of his former teammates, and in his excitement, forgot that Green Ranger stayed in Gorganus' palace, intending to live the rest of his ageless days in the home of his former master. The Black Ranger was no match for his former friend's rage when he returned.
Green Ranger removed his helmet. He had no reason to worry about anyone finding out his identity now. "Well, Joseph, you've always been a survivor." he joked to himself as he felt the scar that ran from the top of his forehead down past his right eye (a nervous habit from the time he received the injury.) He pulled the saber out of it's sheath on his belt. The Pink Ranger had made it for him. She had been the braniac of the group, and was making new weapons for everyone. She had only been able to finish this one, and she didn't have the time to finish the weapon's artificial intelligence program. The end of the handle was the head of a tiger, and was supposed to be able to talk. He briefly considered running himself through with it, not being able to cope with being all alone. He remembered some of the magic he learned from Gorganus when he was on his side. One of them allowed travel to another dimension, but it would only work once.
It didn't matter. He would have stayed where he ended up even if he didn't have to. There was no point in returning to a dead world. He took the Dragon Dagger off his back and played the flute. As he waited for his Dragonzord to arrive, he conjured up a basic portal. After some frustration and distraction from the thumping of Dragonzord's footsteps, he managed to find an alternate Angel Grove, and a huge underwater cave with an easy access to the open sea. It was the perfect place for Dragonzord. As he completed the spell for the portal to engulf them, he hoped he would actually need Dragonzord. After all, he never had a chance to test the modifications he had made.
~*~Five months later
Joseph was enjoying the life he had rigged for himself in Angel Grove. He faked Amnesia after realizing that he couldn't very well say he was a Power Ranger from another dimension looking for a new home. He "remembered" his first name, said he was 16 years old, and of coarse, he remembered his training as a ninja. After that, he found himself in a very caring foster family when the AGPD had found no trace of him anywhere else. Joseph now had caring parents, something that he never had before. He also had a new older brother named Rick who quickly stopped making plans to hassle his new sibling, as older brothers tend to do, when Joseph threw him clear across the room as a warning. Since his brother went to the same school that he enrolled in, his reputation quickly spread and he found himself without having to do with the annoyance of bullies.
As it turned out, there were Power Rangers in this dimension, but Joseph had been pondering whether or not to approach them ever since he noticed that they looked exactly like the Rangers he fought with. Letting go of the dead was always hard for Joseph, and the Rangers of his new home constantly reminded him of the ones he knew that had died. Finally, he wondered what he would do when his family noticed that he didn't age. At that point, Joseph realized that school was out for spring break and decided to go do something to enjoy it.
~*~The Same Day
Rocky DeSantos walked into the Youth Center and looked at the clock. He was ten minutes early for the meeting he had planed with his friends. He thought of practicing on the mat, but there was already someone doing a kata with a pair of wooden Ninja-To. He recognized the fighting style from a description in a book, but he had never seen it. He had noticed the guy around school, but Rocky had no idea he was a martial artist. Rocky soon found himself talking to Ernie at the juice bar. After they ran out of things to talk about, Rocky realized he hadn't killed very much time.
"Hey Ernie." Rocky said, "Who is that?" he asked, remembering that Ernie made it a point to know everyone in the Youth Center.
"You mean you haven't met the new ninja on the block?" Ernie answered.
Rocky glanced back towards the mat. "No."
"His name's Joseph." Ernie started, "apparently, he appeared in town a few months ago with almost no memory. He remembered his name and his age. Police couldn't find any records of `em, like he never existed, so they set him up in a foster home. Real nice kid, keeps to himself though."
Rocky was going to go over and introduce himself. He found that he often related to the quiet types. Then, his communicator beeped.
"Ah, sorry Ernie. I have to go." He said as he stood up.
"Weren't Tommy and the others supposed to meet you here?" Ernie inquired, accustomed to Rocky's or one of the other's "beepers" going off. "Oh, I have a feeling they'll understand." The Red Ranger said as he left.
~*~Joseph had put his swords in his locker after successfully executing his entire repertoire on the mat, when he noticed that he and Ernie were the only ones left in the Youth Center. Ernie was watching the TV, and Joseph knew why everyone had left. Another monster attack. Ernie was always incredibly calm, like he was waiting for the inevitability of the Power Rangers winning. He went over to watch, as he could never resist doing, despite the reminders it always gave him. Ernie was the perfect person to watch the attacks with, as he was usually the only sane person left in town.
"I'm worried about this one." Ernie commented as Joseph walked over. Ernie? Worried about a monster attack? That doesn't sound good. Joseph thought. "Why? What's wrong?" he asked.
Ernie gestured to the TV. "Looks like Lord Zedd finally decided to do his own dirty work. And he's winning!"
Joseph looked at the figure in front of the Power Rangers. So that's what he looks like. He thought as he took in the features of the lord of evil. Shortly after that, he realized that the Power Rangers were indeed losing, as it took them longer and longer to get up after each of Zedd's magical attacks with his staff. Soon, it came to the point where the Rangers couldn't even counterattack. And you can do something about it. Ringed a voice in his head. He tried to ignore it. They'll look even more familiar if you see them die it continued.
Lord Zedd tried to single out the White Ranger, but the Ranger rolled away as Zedd shot some more magic. The blast hit the ground, shaking it all the way to the Youth Center and beyond. There was some clanging in the back room, and Ernie went to check to see if anything big had toppled over.
Now or never the voice spoke. Joseph used his limited magic to will himself his uniform and weapons, and then used it again to warp out of the building in a flash of green fire. He still considered those his two best spells: morphing with just his power coin embedded in the dagger, and self-teleportation. If he was lucky, that annoying little voice of what he thought to be his conscience might even go away now.
~*~The Power Rangers were on the verge of defeat, and they knew it. The ones that were conscious, anyway. The Blue Ranger had rushed Zedd with his lance after feeling a second wind, while the White and Red Rangers were trying to stay on their feet. The other three were out cold. Lord Zedd let out an evil cackle as he knocked the Blue Ranger down with his staff. He turned to the last two. "Why don't you give up now, Rangers?" he mocked. "I'm in a good mood today. Maybe I'll let you live to see the Hell that I plan to bring on your planet!" he said before cackling again.
The Red Ranger replied. "You can go to Hell, Zedd!" he yelled. He flew back as Zedd blasted him with his staff. He and the Blue Ranger were still conscious, but they couldn't get up to help their friend. Zedd walked over to the White Ranger. The Ranger lunged for Zedd with his saber, but Zedd stepped to the side easily. The Lord of Evil swung his staff, hitting White Ranger in his stomach with the "Z" on the top end. The Ranger dropped his weapon as he doubled over, and didn't even see Zedd as he raised his staff and hit him square in the back, knocking White Ranger down to one knee.
"It's a pity you never actually stayed evil, Tommy." he said as he raised the bladed end of his staff. "You know, I should have done this myself a long time ago!"
Zedd held his staff in the air for several seconds, wanting to savor the moment. Before he brought down the staff, however, several flashes of green streaked across his field of vision. Zedd turned as he realized he was being attacked with magic from a distance. As he turned, one of the blasts found it's mark on Zedd's hand, sending waves of pain up his sinewy arm as his staff spun away.
"WHO DARES TO ATTACK ME!" he screamed, half in pain and half in rage as he turned to face his attacker.
"I dare, quite frankly." Commented Green Ranger as he stared back at Zedd, rather calmly. By Zedd's startled jump backward, Joseph guessed that, had Zedd had a jaw, it would have dropped. Though he had no idea how one more Power Ranger could scare the villain after he had just brought six of them down.
Zedd sized up his new opponent. It was Green Ranger all right, right down to the Dragon Shield. Zedd noted some differences on him than when Tommy wore that same uniform. He had no morpher, but he had what looked like a copy of Tommy's Saba on the right side of his belt, angled for his left hand. On his back, a rectangular section of the shield was missing, and in it's place was a sheath holding the Dragon Dagger, connected to his belt by a sash
"H-How?" Zed stammered. "No, I don't even CARE!" he yelled. "I'm this close to winning, and I'm not going to let some Green Ranger wanna-be stop me!"
Zedd held his hand out. In a flash of white light, his staff reappeared in his hand. Zedd rolled to the side as more green bolts came at him, apparently from the Dragon Dagger. Much to the Evil Lord's surprise, the Ranger broke into a running charge at him. Without even commenting that someone would have be absurdly stupid to run at him from a distance, he pointed his staff and shot out a stream of magical lightning. Zedd was surprised even more when the blast did not connect and incinerate the Ranger, but rather put a hole in the ground as the Ranger jumped over the energy and landed right in front of him.
"A wanna-be, huh?" Joseph remarked as he landed in front of Zedd. Before the Evil Lord could react to the Ranger in front of him, Joseph grabbed the dagger from his back and slashed downward, opening a gash in Zedd's chest. He continued his offensive by whirling around and slashing at Zedd's throat, but Zedd had staggered back and he ended up severing one of the tubes that pumped a bluish liquid through his body. Zedd tried to retaliate by bringing his staff down at the Ranger, but Joseph stepped to the side and slashed with both of his weapons, one up and one down. Zedd howled in pain as a white light engulfed him.
Zedd found himself in his palace on the moon. "What am I doing HERE?" he screamed, angry that he had just been screwed out of the biggest chance he had ever had for victory.
"Calm down Zeddy!" came Rita Repulsa's voice. "I brought you back!"
"WHAT! He screamed at his wife. "I had them on their knees, Rita! I."
"Was getting sliced and diced by that Green Ranger." Rita finished for him. "Zed, in case you haven't noticed, you can now pass as chopped liver! You got so pissed off that you had no idea what you were doing, and your `little' injuries are obviously making it worse. Now sit down before I sit you down!"
Zed complied. His anger was turning into depression from losing so easily, and he wanted Rita to shut up as soon as possible. "Just have Squatt and Baboo get me some aspirin." He told her. "I think I'm getting one of your headaches."
The Power Rangers were finally standing up or waking up altogether, and they were instantly staring in awe at the Ranger who had just saved them. A few seconds later, Green Ranger had disappeared, and the confused Rangers teleported out of the park in a rainbow of colors.
As soon as the Rangers arrived at the command center, they all either took their helmets off to get some air or unmorphed completely. A few seconds later, one of them collapsed.
Kimberly was the first to notice. "Adam! Are you okay?" she yelled as she crouched down beside him. "I-I think my leg is broken." he managed to get out. Alpha ran over with a scanner.
"Aye yi yi! In two places!" the little robot croaked.
"I'll take you to the hospital, Adam." Billy said, planning to check himself in as well when he realized he was bleeding pretty badly from his arm. Zedd's magic got through their suits easily enough. Billy planed on saying Zedd had attacked them before the Power Rangers arrived; It's partly true. the Blue Ranger joked to himself. Zordon now spoke. "Kimberly, Aisha," he said, noticing that they didn't look so good either. "Perhaps you should go as well." He finished. In truth, Zordon had read their minds, and Alpha teleported them near the Angel Grove hospital as soon as they propped Adam up. Rocky and Tommy were the only ones without serious injuries.
"Zordon, do you know who that Green Ranger is?" Tommy asked. Zordon didn't need to know why Tommy had that at the top of his mind. For once, Zordon was at a loss.
"No Tommy, I do not. Those powers shouldn't even exist."
Rocky spoke up. "Something about him seemed familiar. I can't quite put my finger on it."
Tommy and Rocky left the Command Center and went to check on the others at the hospital.
~*~Two Days Later
Joseph found himself practicing on the mat at the Youth Center again. His mind was on the events of yesterday as he finished. He had forgotten how much he enjoyed being a Ranger. A few seconds later he spun around as a hand touched his shoulder.
"Sorry about that." Rocky apologized. "I didn't mean to startle you."
"Uh, no problem." Joseph replied.
"What style is that anyway?" Rocky asked, not remembering the name from the book.
"It's called Dream slashed sword. As far as I know, it's the oldest known sword technique. Why?" he replied.
"Just curious. I've practiced a lot of sword techniques and I've never seen that one." He extended his hand. "I'm Rocky."
Joseph returned the courtesy. "Joseph. Pleased to meet you."
Rocky wanted to continue the conversation, but as he was about to say something else, his communicator beeped. "Not again." Rocky thought aloud. "Look, I gotta go. Talk to you later?"
"Sure." Joseph replied. Rocky walked away. Joseph realized that Rocky looked a little worse for where. Rocky's rather abrupt exit reminded him of the ones he had often made, when he thought of something. "No way." He whispered to himself. He wanted to know who the Rangers really were before he introduced himself to them. He enjoyed being known as a person with a few more facts than everybody else had. The idea that one of them would accidentally give himself away seemed absurd.
Joseph followed Rocky outside the Youth Center without making a sound. Sure enough, after talking to someone through what looked like a watch, Rocky vanished in a flash of red light. Red Ranger, come on down.
Joseph thought of something else; the five others that Rocky hanged around with all the time were likely the other Rangers. It was actually pretty obvious. They all had a thing for a different color, as he did with green. They seemed to have a habit of making sudden and often abrupt exits. Something was apparently going on though, and he wasn't about to miss out on the fun.
~*~Rocky appeared in the Command Center around the same time as the other Rangers, except for Adam, who had just gotten home from the hospital with a cast on his leg.
"What's up, Zordon?" Tommy asked, as he usually did.
"Lord Zedd has sent Goldar and another monster into the city. I believe he has become aware of Adam's condition and is attempting to take advantage of the situation."
"That figures. On top of which, we're all still exhausted from the other day." Kimberly put in.
Alpha silently wished the Rangers luck as they left.
~*~As soon as the Rangers appeared in the park (the exact spot where Zedd has chosen to launch his attack,) Goldar sprung an ambush. A horde of Tenga warriors appeared behind them, and the Rangers were effectively trapped. Goldar immediately went after Tommy when Billy, Kimberly, and Aisha turned to face the Tengas. Rocky was left to deal with the other monster: a spider slightly bigger than Goldar, with the head of a stone gargoyle and grayish armor. Zedd must be having a lapse in his creativity Rocky thought as he advanced on the monster.
Joseph watched the battle from the other side of the park. It wasn't as hopeless as the last time, but without the Black Ranger, whom he guessed was Adam Park, the Rangers were likely to lose.
~*~Goldar swung his sword at Tommy's neck, watching angrily as the White Ranger crouched underneath the swing. Tommy knew that Goldar would recover to fast for him to get a good shot in with Saba, so he plowed his shoulder into Goldar as he stood back up. Goldar staggered back. "Today you shall meet your doom, White Ranger!" the monkey roared.
"You know what Goldar?" Tommy answered, "You say that every time you fight me, but it never happens. Maybe you should take some sword classes instead of learning how to just sound intimidating!"
The Tenga warriors were retreating from the three Rangers, but before they flew away, they gained up on Billy and managed to take him down before Kimberly and Aisha realized what they were doing. Before they could check on Billy, an extremely fast moving object knocked them both down. They could hear the happy cries of the spider, and Kimberly looked to see that the object that slammed into them was Rocky. The monster had apparently grabbed hold of him at one point and threw him for all it was worth.
Billy staggered to his feet as Rocky hobbled over. The four of them, exhausted from the new wounds they had received and the old ones that hadn't healed yet, stood in front of the spider. Goldar was still locked in battle with Tommy, and the White Ranger was unable to join his friends in front of the spider.
"You know," Billy started as he tried to find the energy to raise his lance. "Assuming we survive this encounter, I'll never take the Power Blaster for granted again."
"I hear ya Billy." Aisha remarked.
Rocky was the first to get serious. "We can't do this. We can barley stand, let alone fight anymore. I hate to retreat, but."
Rocky was about to suggest that they do retreat, but the spider didn't let them finish. It sprang into the air and landed on Rocky. The Red Ranger regained his senses just as the gargoyle head was inching forward to take a byte out of him, clamping it's mouth and drooling.
"Oh, Shit!" he cursed as he grabbed at the living stone and tried to push it back, but he only slowed it down.
Aisha realized what was happening and, dropping her daggers, grabbed the blade off of her belt. She spun it into the blaster as fast as she could. Desperate to save her friend, she aimed at the head. Billy slammed his hand down on the weapon. "NO! You might hit Rocky!"
"Yes, YES!" Zedd exclaimed as he watched the battle from his palace.
"Hey Ed! What's up?"
Oh, no. Zedd despaired as he turned. "My name is Zedd, Rito!" he yelled at his brother-in-law. "Do you hear me? ZEDD!"
"Sure, whatever Ed. Whatcha' watchin'?" he asked as he looked through the Repulsa `scope that Zedd had bought his wife. I give up. The Lord of Evil thought as he felt like Rito's sheer stupidity would cause him to faint.
Tommy was becoming sick of Goldar. "Ha ha ha!" Goldar laughed. "The Red Ranger will make a fine meal to the spider! And the other Rangers are to hysterical to see the weak point on it's back!" Tommy looked over. Indeed, the thing was trying to take a bite out of Rocky, and there was a spot on it's back that had no armor over it. The spot was pulsing out mucus. and Tommy fell from a hard impact to his head. Goldar had hit him with the hilt of his sword while he looked away, and he now had a concussion for being distracted.
"It appears that you will die today, White Ranger!" the ape snarled. Tommy was still in too much of a daze to move. His vision was blurring, but he could make out Goldar raising his sword and bringing it down to impale him. And, for the first time since he became a Power Ranger, Tommy thought that Goldar would actually beat him. As Goldar's sword came down, however, a pair of bladed weapons shot into Tommy's field of vision and hooked on to Goldar's sword. Tommy turned his head to see Green Ranger use Goldar's own momentum to pull the sword to the side. As Goldar stumbled, Tommy stood up despite the pain and nausea flooding through him. Goldar was now busy with Green Ranger, and Tommy headed towards the spider.
At this point, Zedd was about ready to blow a gasket.
"NO!!!" he shouted, slamming his fist on the rail. "Why won't they JUST DIE!? Damn that Ranger!"
Billy, Kimberly, and Aisha aimed their guns at the monster's midsection and fired. The spider's armor held, and they had done nothing more than distract it long enough for Rocky to push it back a few inches. Billy was about to risk aiming for the head, as Rocky had nothing to lose. He was pleasantly surprised when Tommy jumped on the creature's back and lunged at something with Saba. The creature let out a moan, and died in seconds. Rocky managed to slide out from under the monster now that it was no longer putting pressure on his legs. Tommy had finally succumbed to unconsciousness. As the other Rangers went to check on Tommy, Rocky was fixated on the battle between Goldar and Green Ranger.
It was suddenly very clear why something about Green Ranger seemed so familiar.
"They're to hysterical to notice the weak point on it's back." Zedd copied, mocking Goldar's voice by squealing it. "YOU IMBECILL!" he yelled, not even realizing that Goldar couldn't hear him. "YOU'RE DUMBER THAN RITO! WHY DIDN'T YOU JUST GO OVER AND STAB IT YOURSELF!" Rito turned to the doorway. "Rita!" he yelled. "I think your husband needs some riddelin!"
"Wretched human! Stand still!" Goldar yelled as Green Ranger stepped out of the way of yet another one of the overgrown monkey's attacks. Green Ranger didn't reply. He simply shot forward with his hands on his weapons. As he neared Goldar, he fell into a forward roll and sprang up with the Dragon Dagger slashing, and connecting, to his foe. Goldar, realizing that he had already sustained several injuries from Tommy, impaled the ground with his sword and vanished in golden flames before Green Ranger could renew his attack.
Much to the other Rangers' dismay, with the exception of Rocky, Joseph used his own vanishing act to make himself scarce before he could be approached.
~*~Tommy had regained conciseness by the time the other Rangers had brought him back to the command center, but his head still throbbed. Miraculously, he wasn't bleeding.
"I'd like to know who that Green Ranger is," Tommy said to no one specifically as Alpha gave him an ice pack for his head. "He's already saved our hides twice. I wouldn't mind being able to thank him."
"I know what you mean." Kimberly added; realizing her boyfriend would be dead if Green Ranger hadn't intervened.
Rocky suddenly spoke up. "I know who he is."
"WHAT!" boomed seven voices in unison, including Alpha and Zordon.
"At least, I'm pretty sure I do." Rocky corrected himself.
"How did you." Tommy began. "Who is it?"
"Actually." Rocky replied. "I'd rather be absolutely sure before I say anything. I could find out tonight if I'm right. If I'm wrong, though, I'll have no idea who it is."
Everyone agreed to let Rocky try. After all, the past two days had been exhausting, and if Rocky wanted to deprive himself of rest for a few more hours, who were they to tell him not to?
~*~Rocky had been searching for hours to find his "suspect." He wasn't home or at the Youth Center. Rocky drove around town aimlessly for a wile to no avail, and had started to walk around the park. Finally, he got lucky and literally ran into Joseph as the both rounded a corner at the same time.
"You get around, you know." Rocky commented after each of them realized who the other was. "I've been looking for you for four hours."
"Yea, I had some errands to run." Joseph answered. "What's on your mind?"
"Let's talk." Rocky replied as he started walking. Joseph followed, and Rocky decided not to drag it out. "So, how long have you been the Green Power Ranger?" he asked when he was sure no one was around.
Joseph's face went pale. Uh oh. Busted.he thought. "What are you talking about?" he replied, hoping that Rocky wasn't sure if he really was Green Ranger.
"I figured it out today. Fighting styles are like fingerprints, and yours matches Green Ranger's down to the way your swords are arranged on that belt and sash. Of coarse, it could just be an uncanny coincidence, except your fighting style is supposed to be dead. The techniques were suppose to be lost a long time ago, and I won't even ask how you do know it. It should be impossible for one person to know the whole thing, let alone two. Then there's your obsession with one color, your reaction when I asked."
"Okay! Okay!" Joseph interrupted. "I confess, I'm Green Ranger, and to answer the question, a long time, and a long story. Now it's my turn, Red Ranger. Where do you teleport off to before a battle?"
"How did you.?" Rocky spat out in shock.
"You're easy to follow, Rocky. Not to mention the color thing. Well?"
"Our Command Center, Where else?" Rocky answered.
"Nope, never had one of those. I'm sure I'll hear about. Tomorrow. " Joseph noticed it was getting late. "I have to get home or my parents will kill me."
"Yeah, likewise. See you tomorrow then." Rocky said as he turned around to go home himself.
"Oh, and Rocky?" Joseph called back. "You can tell the others I know about them, too."
~*~The Next Day
"I'm coming, already!" Adam yelled as he hobbled to the door on a crutch. The doorbell rang for the umpteenth time. Adam opened the door to see his fellow Rangers on his doorstep, sans Rocky.
"I was wondering when you'd all show up." Adam joked after he invited them in.
"You might say we have been otherwise preoccupied." Billy commented, cringing slightly at the bruises that the Tengas left him with as he sat down. Everyone else, however, had been glad to sit down at any opportunity since the beating they took the day before.
"So I see." Adam replied, pointing to the TV where the morning news was recapping the battle from the day before. "Looks like our new friend made another appearance. Hey, where's Rocky?"
"He went off to follow a lead on the identity of `our new friend' last night." Tommy answered, now over the shock of seeing Green Ranger.
"Come to think of it, he was supposed to meet us here."
"Something probably came up." Adam started to say as Tommy's communicator went off.
"You don't think Zedd attacked him on his way?" Aisha spoke worriedly.
"I hope not." Tommy replied. "We'll catch you later, Adam."
~*~Aisha spoke up as soon as the Rangers arrived in the Command Center. "Zordon, what's going on?"
"Rocky has been ambushed on his way to meet with you. His communicator has been destroyed, and he has apparently been brought to a secluded area on the beach. Turn to the Viewing Globe."
The Rangers did so. Rito Revolto, Goldar, and a squid-like monster that stood on four if it's tentacles were dancing about. Rocky was on the ground, writhing in pain.
Several new injuries dotted his body, and he was bleeding from most of them. A large gash was visible on his back, apparently from Rito's sword. Rocky's morpher was tied to the blade, just above the handle, and Rito was gloating over his cheap shot. "Those basterds!" Kim blurted out, enraged that her friend had been treated as such. "We have to help him!"
"Kimberly, you are probably the best to get him to safety after arriving. Your injuries will probably keep you from fighting effectively more than the others." Alpha said. Kimberly agreed.
"This is obviously a set up to take advantage of our recent exhaustion. Rito took his morpher and destroyed his communicator on purpose so we could not bring Rocky back without reducing our numbers down to three, and I am not the optimum Ranger to fight with when facing multiple opponents." Billy assessed. The last part was an advantage that Rito and the other two had given themselves inadvertently. Why they had brought Rocky to the beach was anyone's guess.
"Perhaps." came a voice from Zordon's direction. The Rangers whirled around, however, when they realized it wasn't Zordon's voice, and found themselves looking at Green Ranger. ". I could be of some help."
"How did you." Billy started to say.
"Later!" Zordon cut in. "Rangers, Rocky's injuries are very serious! He will almost certainly die if he does not receive medical attention quickly! You must leave immediately if you are to save him."
"Then let's hurry." Tommy said as he eyed Green Ranger again. "It's morphin' time!"
"I'll meet you there." Green Ranger said as he vanished.
~*~Rocky was starting to feel lightheaded from loss of blood, and looked up to see his morpher tied to Rito's sword.
"I got his morpher! I got his morpher!" Rito sang.
"Oh yeah? Well I destroyed his communicator!" Goldar bragged. Rocky had already noticed that when he woke up to find that Goldar had apparently hammered it with the hilt of his sword, and Rocky's wrist was now a dark shade of black-and-blue from the impact.
"Oh yeah? Well you two had better sssssshhhhhhut up!" hissed the squid creature. "The other Rangerssssss are here!"
Goldar and Rito turned toward the shore where the Rangers had teleported in.
"Damm it!" Kim hissed, realizing that Rito was blocking her path to Rocky. Green Ranger surveyed the area. The "beach" was actually a hole in the side of a hill, effectively boxing them in. There was a small cave to the side. Already, Tommy and Goldar were at each other's throats, Aisha and Billy had gone after the squid, and Kimberly was sizing up Rito.
"I can knock him down from here, but he'll get up in a few seconds. You'll have to be fast"
"Just tell me when to run!"
Green Ranger drew his dagger, but held it behind his back. "GO!" Kimberly sprinted towards Rocky. A few seconds later, Green Ranger swung the dagger, and several bolts of energy flew at Rito. Rito was to slow to dodge, and flew backwards as his sword careened out of his hands and stuck in the ground. Kimberly ran past him as he stood back up, tearing Rocky's morpher from his sword as she passed. She bent down to grab her injured friend, and the two vanished in a combination of pink and red light. Rito, now thoroughly frightened by the prospect of having to fight someone with long-range magic, chickened out and vanished. Tommy managed to knock Goldar down, and used the opportunity to help his friends with the squid. It managed to jump away as he and Green Ranger approached it.
Lord Zedd and Rita watched as Rito returned to the palace and Goldar ran into the cave at the shore.
"Zeddy!" Rita piped up. "The Rangers can't use all their Zords!"
"I'm way ahead of you Rita." He said as he held up one of his growth grenades and threw it.
The squid caught the grenade and threw it at it's feet. The device had it's desired effect and the monster grew to a massive height.
"This isn't good." Aisha said. "We're short two Zords."
"We'll have to make do" Tommy responded. "Ninjazord Power!"
The Rangers entered their Zords, surrounding the huge squid monster.
"Finally!" Joseph exclaimed as he raised the Dragon Dagger. He played the flute, and watched as Dragonzord rose from it's nearby hiding place.
"Ranger!" came Goldar's voice from behind. Joseph turned. Goldar had gotten what he wanted out of the cave. "This is why we brought the Red Ranger here. It's a great place to hide a hostage. Now, bring me that dagger!"
Goldar was holding his sword to his hostage's throat.
Oh, Jesus. Joseph cursed as he realized in horror that Goldar's hostage was his brother. Joseph, unbeknownst to Goldar, flipped a tiny switch on the dagger that sent Dragonzord into automatic. He held the weapon by it's blade and eased forward.
"Slowly, Green Ranger! Or his death will be your fault!" Goldar threatened. Suddenly, however, the ground shook from the battle between the Zords and the squid, and Goldar's grip faltered. Rick tried to get away, but Goldar hit him in the head with the flat end of his sword in an attempt to hold on. Joseph ran at the ape, but Goldar saw him coming.
"ACK!" was all Joseph got out as Goldar lifted him by the neck and squeezed.
"Beg for mercy, little Ranger!" Goldar blissfully chuckled as he used his other hand to pummel him on the head.
Joseph suddenly found himself on the ground. Goldar staggered and vanished, leaving behind the other Rangers. The ground shaking was apparently the result of the Rangers destroying the squid.
Tommy decided to take off Green Ranger' helmet after realizing he couldn't breath. That, and the fact that blood was coming out of the seams. Aisha noted, as his breathing became normal, that he had seen the guy around school, while Billy remembered the incident when he had been near choked to death by a magical snake in a cave. The other Rangers had to pull his helmet off for him to get a breather. Seconds later, Rocky, Adam, and Aisha, who weren't Rangers yet, walked into the cavern and found them out.
"Thanks." Joseph managed to say between coughs as he clutched the laceration from Goldar's blows on his forehead. His head was throbbing, and he felt his conciseness fading. "I. Oh, great." He came out with suddenly.
The Rangers looked over to see Rick, a rather large lump on his head, and a very confused look on his face. Before he could ask his brother what was going on, Joseph passed out.
Joseph awoke at the hospital to find stitches in his forehead, and to experience one of the worst headaches he had ever felt. The others gave the usual "attacked before the Power Ranger's arrived" story for both he and Rocky. The Red Ranger was released from intensive care with a huge bandage on his back, stitches in several other places, and some cracked ribs. Kimberly had gotten him there before he was in danger of bleeding to death.
"Well, well!" Rocky exclaimed, after Joseph realized that he and Tommy were in the room with him. "Concussion boy's finally awake!"
"Noise. stop the noise!" Joseph over exaggerated.
"So you're the new Green Ranger, huh?" Tommy asked, as if the fact hadn't quite sunken in.
"I wouldn't say `new,' but I guess it fits."
"Nevertheless, you've saved our asses quite a few times already, and we're grateful. If you're willing to explain how you got those powers in the first place, and let Zordon read you the riot act about being a Power Ranger, your welcome to join."
"I'd be glad to. Where's my brother?"
"He went home to sleep off his headache after we swore him to secrecy." Rocky informed him. "Your mother was quite hysterical and has been sitting in the waiting room ever since the doctor told her it would be better if you woke up on your own."
"Can I just ask one question?" Joseph wondered. Rocky and Tommy nodded at the same time.
"Why does everybody look at me like I've grown three heads and feathers when I'm in uniform?"
*Did anybody catch Gorganus as the name of the villain from an old Power Ranger rip-off called "Tattooed Teenage Alien Fighters from Beverly Hills?" Comments and constructive criticism welcome at: email@example.com Coming soon (assuming any feedback I get is not 100% flames) Shades of Green: Green with Evil, part 6 (And no, it's not going to be a "spell turns the new Green Ranger evil" thing.)