Disclaimer: I do not, have never and have no hope to own the
Power Rangers. They are owned by Saban (Please don't sue me Mr Saban).
I also do not own Doctor Who, which belong to the BBC or any associated
characters. Harry Potter is the property of JK Rowling and although not
used directly in this series is an excellent read and deserves a mention.
I do not own VR Troopers, Big Bad Beetleborgs, Masked Rider, Galaxy Rangers, Transformers or GI Joe. Some of the concepts and character in this story are based on these shows as do any characters that make an appearance. They are all used without permission of the copyright owners.
I also need to credit Battlestar Galactica, Star Wars, Blake's Seven and Star Fleet/ X-Bomber for some of the ideas in this book and for general inspiration. References are made later in the series to Sailormoon, Digimon, Pokemon, Robotech, Zoids, Gundam Wing, Captain Planet, Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future and Dragonball-Z and any character or idea taken from those series is done without permission. If there is anything I've forgotten such as MASK, Terrahawks, Thunderbirds or Ghostbusters, they're not mine either.
I would like to thank Jeremy Ray Logsdon, Ellen Brand and Randel for writing their respective series. They were an inspiration to me two years ago when I started writing this series and remain so regardless of the numerous rewrites I have produced. The basis of the Morphin Grid in this series is modified from Randel's version of Ellen's definition of the Morphin Grid. The idea of the Infinity Crystals in later chapters was inspired by Jeremy Ray's Earth Crystals and Marvel Comic's Infinity Quest. Any characters used have been taken with the permission of the author.
The mention of a series, book or television program in this disclaimer in no way guarantees characters, places or situations from those sources will appear in this series. Most are excellent programs that deserve a mention or that have had a positive influence on the direction of this series. No part of this series is used for profit.
Author's Note: This is a rewrite of the first part of Conquest of Evil first released at the Command Center Archives in 1998/99. This has been rewritten to allow for later seasons of Power Rangers including Wild Force.
Time Line: The series does not adhere to the Saban timeline. The year is 1996 and the series begins after Billy left for Aquitar, but before Jason started to lose the powers of the Gold Ranger.
Life had been peaceful for the Rangers of Earth since they had driven Rita and Zedd from their world. The Machine Empire was still under repair and there seemed to be a definite lack of one-time villains around. Not that they complained about the time they had for themselves; among the many things they had learnt during their time as Rangers, it was to appreciate the chance for a day off when they had it.
For a few weeks everything remained calm. Kat was able to concentrate on her ballet much to Tommy's regret; he didn't mind watching, but when she insisted he take part he drew the line. Jason and Adam had increased the number of classes so they could provide more intensive sessions for their students while Rocky continued to recover from his loss. The Blue Zeo Ranger had taken up acting again as an escape and was proving to enjoy the chance to act foolish; Tanya settled into her post at the local radio station. Everything was calm and today was no exception, at least, not yet.
Tommy sighed contentedly as he pushed his chair back from the table. Moments before the table had been filled with foods of all sorts. Once they had all eaten, there was nothing left at all. His mother had come through again with enough food to feed herself, her husband, Chelsea, Teddy and Tommy, but had somehow catered for nine extra guests. All had eaten and were full. From the look of relief on his mother's face Tommy could tell it had been a close call, but in the end her generous supply of food had countered even Rocky's appetite.
"Whew! That was great Mom," he complimented. His mother turned around from sink where she was washing the dishes.
"Why thank you Tommy," she replied. Normally she wouldn't be in such a great mood while cleaning up, but today for some reason she was in a good mood. Of course she had done all of the cooking, and now she was cleaning up after everyone. Teddy was usually too busy working on who knows what on his computer, and Chelsea was entertaining her friends. As for Tommy and his father, well after the last time she had decided it was better not to let them near the plates. _Men, _ she thought a bit sarcastically, _they have it so easy. _
"Thanks for the meal Mom," said Tommy as he started to head outside. He had been the last one left at the table, as everyone else had already left. Suddenly she stopped washing the dish she was holding in her hand as she remembered something.
"Tommy, I forgot to tell you, but there's a letter for you," she said.
"Thanks Mom," Tommy said as he ran upstairs. He returned a few minutes later holding the opened documents. "I'm going to Japan."
Mrs Oliver dropped the dish she was holding, and it smashed into a million pieces when it hit the ground with a loud crash. She had come to expect strange things to happen since moving to Angel Grove. Tommy had certainly been involved in his fair share of strange fund raising projects, but this was a new one. Mainly though it seemed whenever Tommy was involved there was trouble. She'd never said it to his face, but Tommy and any sort of activity that wasn't school, seemed to bring a double dose of trouble for everyone.
"International Martial Arts Tournament!" exclaimed Teddy as his brother told him what the letter had said. "Isn't that a little out of your league?"
"Yes, it is," answered Tommy.
Tommy was good at martial arts, but even though it was an area he excelled in, he did not practice it as religiously as others did. Those who regularly attended the tournaments knew not only how to fight, but how to act. There was more to winning than simply being the best.
When morphed his powers enhanced his skills and even though Zordon had stressed many times that the powers would only strengthen what was already there, without them he recognised there was a long way to go.
"From what it says here each Angel Grove was selected to pick a team for the Junior Category. They'll join the Adult Division who have been chosen from across the nation."
"So they chose you," Jason said cheerfully. His was genuinely pleased for his friend.
"Us," Tommy corrected and showed him the letter. "Rocky and Adam have been invited as well."
"What about..." Rocky trailed off because they were in mixed company, mixed being that some knew they were Power Rangers and some didn't.
"I think we can come to an arrangement," Mr Oliver said. "I'll talk to your mother and I'm sure she'll agree."
"Thanks," Rocky managed; he was secretly glad that Mr Oliver had jumped to the wrong conclusion, although he didn't think his mother would argue too much.
"When is the tournament?" Chelsea asked.
"Two weeks," Tommy replied. "Transport will be arranged, but we have to let them know if we're interested. There's some other names on the list so I guess we'll need to find out first."
"Why don't we go and see him?" Adam asked patiently.
He was of course referring to their mentor Zordon, but for those who didn't know their secret it could be assumed to be anyone on the list.
"Of course Tommy," Zordon boomed as the Red Zeo Ranger explained the situation, "I would never keep you from such an opportunity if it could be avoided."
"Besides we can contact you with your communicators," Alpha stated.
"Man, it just feels so weird leaving Earth unprotected."
"Katherine and I are here," Tanya pointed out. "And with Jason as well Angel Grove is hardly defenceless. Besides, you can always teleport back."
That was true. Although Jason had given back the Gold Ranger powers he had discovered by chance that the residual energies remained. That had led him to discover his severely weakened morphing abilities. He could transform into a half-powered Ranger that Zordon referred to as a Morphin Warrior. So far he had not been required to use his powers in combat and had only been called in when they needed his help for Zord battles.
"Like we did when Rita trapped us in the theatre," Rocky said.
"Rocky be careful," Alpha warned. "I haven't put the cleaning equipment away and if you keep jumping around you might break..."
"CRASH!" came the sound as a test tube hit the ground and shattered into many, many tiny little pieces of glass. Adam was standing next to the broken test tube, trying to look innocent, but he failed miserably.
"...broken," finished Alpha with a sigh.
"Whoops," said Adam nervously. "Sorry."
"I think that test tube was empty," hoped Alpha. He didn't like to think what had been in those samples he was dusting.
Jason yawned sleepily as he stepped out of the changing room. The others had been gone for a week now and he had spent the time working out and covering their classes. Occasionally he would find someone to spar with, usually either Samoht or David Trueheart. Eric Meyers had been selected to take part in the competition, as had two of their other students.
He looked in the mirror and immediately went back to comb his hair. As usual after showering, it was a complete mess. He looked outside to where Emily was serving her customers. _Maybe I'll ask her to do something later, _ he thought.
He walked across the room and took a seat at the counter where he could watch the other activities. Somehow the table where the Rangers normally sat seemed lonesome without Tommy there. There was still time left before he was due to meet with Kat and Tanya for a picnic. The two girls had persuaded him to join them near Angel Grove Lake at lunchtime. He looked at the clock and then looked again; it had stopped.
"Ernie, what time is it?" he asked.
"Almost Noon," the owner answered. "Do you want a sandwich?"
"They're going to kill me," Jason muttered as he paid for his drink and ran.
Ernie chuckled. It made a difference to watch Jason rush off when there wasn't a monster attack. Although he imagined Tanya and Kat could be worse than a monster in some cases.
Jason jogged quickly to where they had arranged to meet and as he approached he could hear Kat's slightly annoyed voice. He decided to play it cool and slowed down. He missed the tree root but his foot didn't. He tumbled forward and landed flat on his back with a loud thud.
"Ow... my head!" he complained as he stood up slowly rubbing the back of his head. He groaned. This is going to be one of those days, he thought grimly.
"Stop fooling around," Kat called to him.
Jason sighed when he heard Tanya laugh. Obviously sympathy was not going to come from them.
"Come on Jason!" called out Katherine impatiently.
"I'm coming, I'm coming," he answered as he ran over to them.
"Let's go!" said Tanya.
"Yeah, let's get out of here," agreed Katherine, eager to leave before something else happened. "We'll go to the beach instead. You still have the keys to the RADBUG don't you?"
"Yeah," Jason said nervously.
The RADBUG had remained mothballed in the Power Chamber since Billy had gone to Aquitar. Jason knew Billy's invention could be temperamental when it was cold. He hoped Alpha had kept the heating on in that part of the Power Chamber.
"Let's go," he said after a moment's hesitation.
They ran to a safe spot that Alpha could teleport the car to. The sudden appearance of a flying car would be too difficult to explain.
As they were about to climb into the vehicle Tanya looked at the sky and noticed a few clouds approaching. She sighed. She hoped that it was a natural storm although somehow she had her doubts.
Dark clouds had gathered in the sky, and lightning flickered across the sky. A light rain began to fall.
"Oh! I don't believe it!" complained Kat as she felt a few drops of rainfall on her.
They had just finished laying out their picnic after Jason had successfully parked the car.
"It's just a little rain," said Tanya. Suddenly the light rain changed into a downpour. "Uh-oh."
"You were saying?" asked Jason.
"Come on. Don't just stand there," interrupted Kat. "Let's go." She took off running quickly, and they followed her. Suddenly a jagged bolt of lightning lit up the sky, and a deafening crash of thunder echoed.
"EEEKS!" shrieked Tanya as she stopped running and covered her ears. "I hate thunderstorms!"
"Come on Tanya," urged Kat. "It's not that bad."
"Besides, you're not really afraid of thunderstorms, are you?" teased Jason.
"Take that back Jason!" demanded Tanya as she made a face at him. He only laughed.
"Aww... back off Jason," Kat said.
"How come you're taking her side?" questioned Jason.
He knew she was right of course. His comment had been intended as a joke, but Tanya had failed to see the funny side. As he thought about it he realised that he couldn't see anything funny about it either. That worried him a bit.
"I'm sorry," he said after a while. "But I think we should head back to the RADBUG, Tanya, unless you want to stand here in the rain. We'll be safer in the car."
"I'm already soaking wet," she commented as she pushed her thoroughly wet bangs out of her eyes. Another crash of thunder rang out, and Tanya flinched. "I hate thunderstorms, hate them, hate them, hate them!" she mumbled to herself. "All right, let's go," she agreed. As much as she would rather stay in one place and try to avoid seeing the storm, she didn't quite favor getting any wetter than she already was.
As they ran she saw another bolt of lightning etch its way across the sky. Tanya covered her ears in preparation for the thunder that would not doubt soon follow. "I hate thunderstorms, I hate thunderstorms," she repeated to herself as she continued to run blindly.
Kat watched the interaction between Jason and Tanya with interest. She hadn't known Tanya was afraid of storms and she had never seen Jason act the way he had. She wondered for a moment if something was going on.
"Kat, watch out!" called out Jason, interrupting her thoughts.
"Hmm? Oh!" she exclaimed as she tried to stop herself, but it was too late, and she slid into Tanya, knocking them both onto the ground. "Oops, sorry," she apologised.
"Ow," complained Tanya as she stood up slowly. Suddenly he stopped and looked up. "Hey, it stopped raining," she said looking a little confused.
"And the sky's clear right here," added Jason as he looked up.
"Yeah, but it's still raining where we were, and the clouds are still all around us," observed Tanya as she squeezed some of the water out of her hair.
"That's weird," said Kat as they reached the car, "but I guess we should stay here till it clears up."
"Yeah," started Tanya. Flying home would be too dangerous. But before she could finish speaking, a bright light engulfed everything around them. "What's going on?" she shouted.
"I don't know!" called back Kat. The light blinded the three of them for a moment.
"This is just what I needed today," shouted Jason as he shielded his eyes. He still couldn't see anything, and it didn't make any sense. _What's causing this, _ he wondered nervously. Whatever it was, he wasn't sure he wanted to find out. Suddenly the ground beneath them gave way, and they fell down into the complete darkness below.
Jason opened his eyes slowly to the very dim light. _Where am I? _ he wondered as he looked around him, but he saw nothing, save the near darkness. He sat up slowly, rubbing the back of his head. The fall from above had confused him. _Hey, wait a second, _ he thought suddenly.
Instinctively he tried his communicator and to teleport. Surprisingly though the message was not blocked, it simply didn't receive a response. In the same way the teleport attempt simply aborted each time and in the end he had to accept that it wasn't going to work. _At least the anti-jamming measures seem to work. _
"Tanya! Kat?" he called out quickly, but the only response was the echo of his own voice. "Where are they?" he wondered aloud. He walked slowly in the direction, which seemed to be the only source of the dim light around him. I guess I should head this way, he thought to himself but he really had no idea if he was going in the right direction. On top of that, he really didn't what he was looking for, and what to do once he found it. The only thing he was sure of right now was that he needed to find Tanya and Kat. Tanya would probably be able to think of something, and Kat, well, she was probably worse off than he was. She never seemed to like being alone too much, probably because of the time she spent in Rita and Zedd's service. He walked on in silence for a while until suddenly he tripped and fell to the ground.
"Oww..." groaned Tanya as she sat up slowly. "Why does everyone always trip over me," she continued mumbling to herself.
"Oh, sorry about that," apologised Jason as he stood back up quickly. He breathed a quick sigh of relief. At least he had managed to find Tanya.
"Oh... Jason," replied Tanya. A puzzled expression crept across her face slowly as he took in her surrounding. "Whoa... where are we?"
"I don't know," answered Jason, shrugging. "The last thing I remember was getting out of the rain, and then there was that light."
"Yeah... Hey, wait a second," said Tanya suddenly, as she looked around concerned. "Where's Kat?"
"I don't know. I haven't been able to find her yet," answered Jason.
"Then, come on. We've got to go find her."
"Yeah, but which way do we go?" wondered Jason. Tanya looked around in the dim light. It all looked the same to her, except maybe it was a bit brighter in one direction.
"I guess we should head that way," said Tanya.
Before Jason could answer they heard a scream pierce the silence. "Tommy!"
"Kat?" queried Tanya as she tried to locate the source of the sound quickly.
"Come on! Let's go!" said Jason, taking off quickly.
"LET GO OF ME!" yelled Kat angrily. Something was holding her, but she couldn't see it. She only felt that there was some sort of creature behind her, and it had a very good hold of her. She twisted around quickly, in the hopes of catching a glimpse of whatever was, but she saw nothing. She clenched her fists tightly at her side. "I said... LET ME GO!" She stomped hard on what she though was its foot and in a quick burst of light and energy, she was able to escape the hold of the creature, which had tried to capture her. She dropped down to her floor, but immediately whirled around, but she still saw nothing. _What was that? _ She wondered to herself.
"Kat, are you all right?" called out Tanya as soon as she reached her.
"Tanya, Jason," she said still a little dazed. "I'm fine, but what... what happened? Where are we?"
"I'm not sure," answered Jason. "But what happened to you? We heard you scream."
"Oh, uh... something grabbed me, but it's gone now," she answered looking around. She shuddered, and continued, "Whatever it was, it was gross."
"Maybe it was some kind of alien," suggested Tanya. With all the weird things that often came to Earth, they wouldn't have been all that surprised. "But what's it doing here on Earth?" Suddenly her expression changed and he asked, "We are still on Earth, aren't we?" They all looked around quickly, but nothing had changed. There was no way for them to tell where they were.
"How... how are we going to get out of here?" asked Jason uncertainly. His companions remained silent. _Great, _ he thought, _I knew today was going to be a bad day, but this is crazy. _ He looked yet again, but there was nothing at all to see. Everything was still the same. He was having a hard enough time seeing Tanya and Kat, and they were standing directly in front of him. Seeing anything farther was next to impossible. He was the former Red Ranger and he had no idea what to do next.
"I wish it wasn't so dark," murmured Kat. All of the sudden the area immediately around them flooded with light.
"AIEE!" shrieked Tanya as she jumped back from the hole in the floor.
_This is too weird, _ Kat thought nervously.
Whatever caused that must have been listening in on their conversation, and that obviously meant that they were not alone, but who had it been?
"Who's there?" demanded Tanya stepping forward in front of Jason and Kat. However, the sudden increase of light had blinded her momentarily, and she couldn't see anything before her. As she slowly became accustomed to the light again, she noticed a very odd looking creature in front of them.
"Uh... what is that?" asked Kat as she drew back confused.
"What the hell?" wondered Tanya, confused. The creature in front of them seemed to have no definite shape. In fact it only seemed to be some sort of plasmodial alien.
"This is too weird," added Jason as he stared at the creature.
"Ah... I see you've already met my army," came a voice.
"Who's there?" demanded Tanya again. She scanned the area around them quickly, but she couldn't see anyone or anything else, and what had it meant by army?
'Well, since I already know who you are, I suppose it is only fair for you to know who I am," it said as it slowly stepped into the light.
The three of them drew back, half-expecting to see another alien, but to their surprise, it looked human. He wore a red military uniform of some sort with silver boots and black gloves. His cloak appeared to be white, but was covered by so much dirt it was difficult to tell. On his hat he wore a crest of some kind that had obviously remained unpolished for a long time.
"I am called Anory," he introduced himself. "Head Wizard of Master Vile's army."
"WHAT!" exclaimed Jason, Kat and Tanya at the same time.
"I see you know who he was," continued Android 24, obviously pleased with the impact his statement made on them.
"Master Vile?" wondered Tanya, looking over at Kat nervously. "But he's the one wh..." her voice trailed off as Kat nodded. She swallowed loudly. The last time Master Vile had been involved the Rangers had been rendered helpless. This was turning into more than they could handle alone.
Anory's eyes narrowed suspiciously as he noticed for the first time that there were three people present. _Three, _ he thought, _there are only supposed to be two Rangers left. And who is this boy? _ He wondered, _Master Vile didn't mention him. No matter, she will not interfere with my plan. _
"What do you want?" demanded Tanya.
"I have only one mission," he told them. "To seek out and destroy the Power Rangers. Master Vile has allowed me the honour to redeem his empire after Rita and Zedd failed so miserably."
"If that's true, then why did you bring us here?" asked Tanya, glad that the others were away.
"What better way to carry out Master Vile's revenge, than by causing them pain through the deaths of their friends," answered Anory coldly. "When they return... it they return from the tournament I arranged, they will be presented with your corpses before I destroy them one by one."
Kat shivered. Something about this wizard scared her. Maybe it was because he looked so incredibly human like compared to Master Vile's other servants, from his short brown hair to the long thin scar that went down the side of his face. However, there was something that made Anory different, the same thing she had seen on those brief occasions that Rita had enspelled other humans. The eyes of Anory were cold and calculating like a predator. Kat shivered again, but stepped forward a bit. She wouldn't be able to help them at all if she kept scaring herself.
"Where have you taken us?" asked Kat, a bit shakily. The cold dismal atmosphere reminded her too much of Lunar Palace for her to remain completely unaffected.
"Quiet girl!" snapped Anory. "You will find out when I am ready."
"Don't talk to Kat like that," Tanya shot back angrily.
"I do as I please," returned Anory, unconcerned. Tanya looked the wizard over carefully. Had he been human, Tanya would have guessed him to be a little older than Zordon had appeared in some of the images she had seen. _Hey wait, _ she thought, _Zordon. _
"Jason," said Tanya as she turned to face him quickly. "We need to morph."
"Now?' asked Jason, a bit confused. "Why?"
"Our communicators are gone, but we can still morph. When we do Zordon will detect us." explained Tanya.
"Oh, right," agreed Jason as he understood what Tanya meant. He had been concentrating on where they were while leaving Tanya and Kat to find out whom they were dealing with. He close his eyes for a second, concentrating on summoning the Power. Morphin Energy would be more detectable than the Zeo powers. "Morph!"
"You're wasting your time," said Anory suddenly, interrupting Jason's concentration.
Even though he could still summon the Power to transform into a Morphin Warrior, the process required a great deal of thought to begin. The words controlled what happened to the energy, but it was up to him to collect it to begin with. Still, the transformation had been made even if it meant he was only in standby mode.
"Huh?" questioned Jason, confused. "What do you mean?"
"Simple," answered Anory. "No one will be able to detect your location."
"Wh... what does he mean?" Kat asked Tanya quietly.
"Master Vile gave me a great deal of power and his knowledge of Pocket Dimensions. The idea for creating an alternate dimension similar to Zedd's other world was a plan he had devised long ago. However, after his defeat at the hands of those Aquitians, who have now been permanently removed from the picture by the way, more urgent matters took precedence." He didn't mention that the reason for Master Vile's change of plans was because of the sudden resistance movement within the M-51 Galaxy. "The plan was put on hold, until I, familiar with his initial plans, was able to complete the spell to create and maintain an alternate dimension,"
"Alternate dimension?" wondered Kat.
"What exactly is an alternate dimension?" asked Tanya.
"It's a space between time," cut in Anory, as he had overheard the question. "Effectively, you are no where right now."
"No where?" repeated Jason as that slowly sank in.
"Exactly, which means that no one will be able to find you," continued Anory. "Besides, I doubt you would last long enough for anyone to reach you," he added confidently. He was completely certain that killing what he viewed as three children would not take too long. How Rita, Zedd and Master Vile had failed to do so was beyond him. Then after he had finished with them, he would go after the rest of the Rangers. He still hadn't been able to sense whether the rest of his plan was proceeding, but he was sure that by the time he emerged from his alternate dimension, he would find the other Rangers already defeated.
"You seem sure of yourself," said Jason.
"Of course, I have every reason to be," the villain answered. "I won't even have to bother fighting you. My army will take care of that insignificant task by themselves."
"How do you figure that they can beat us?" asked Tanya. Anory seemed to be enjoying himself by explaining his plans to them, and Tanya hoped they would be able to stall him long enough to come up with some sort of a plan.
"My army has a very useful ability," began Anory, pleased in his own way about the curiosity these three children were displaying towards his work. "They absorb the energy from anything they come in contact with."
"But that's..." started Kat, her voice trailing off.
"Impossible, you were going to say?" questioned Anory. "Well you're very far from the truth indeed, girl. As I have told you before, Master Vile trusted me with some of his greatest secrets, including Blue Globbor. You especially Kat must remember how capable he was of draining your energy."
"What's that got to do with it?" interjected Jason, confused.
"Quiet!" snapped Anory. Jason looked provoked and was about to attack 24, but Tanya shook her head a little. Jason was not as hot headed as he had once been, but attacking the wizard was definitely not the solution. "I used the technology that allowed them to absorb energy and took it to the next level. Instead of only absorbing Morphin energy like Globbor, my army can absorb energy, even life force, with even the slightest touch. Very useful, wouldn't you say?"
"But then... how are we supposed to fight them," wondered Jason quietly.
"And we won't be able to use our Power Weapons either," added Tanya, worried.
"Then... what can we do?" asked Kat.
"Nothing," interjected Anory, with a pleased smirk. "Of course I want this to be mildly amusing, so please feel free to morph. You might last longer. Unlike Master Vile's other servants, I will not fail."
"But Master Vile retreated," pointed out Jason. "Why are you still following his orders if you are so powerful?"
"Because I have no choice," answered Anory simply. "The spell he cast means that until I have completed his mission I can do nothing else." Had he been able to, the wizard would probably not have considered Earth a target. He had his own plans, but those would have to wait until he had finished his mission. "Besides, I've worked too long and hard on these to stop now." It was true; he had worked for several months on his army. He had gone out into space and been to many different planets in search of the creatures and materials he needed. It was a then a matter of convincing the Shapers to aid him in forming the new monsters.
"Now what?" Kat thought aloud to herself. No wonder she had felt just a little drained after she had escaped her captor earlier. It must have taken some of her energy. But it only touched me for a for a few seconds, she thought, worry overshadowing her face, if it can absorb energy that fast... She shook her head, trying to clear her mind of it. Right now she had to concentrate on finding some way out of this mess.
"Jason, what should we do?" asked Tanya.
"I'm not sure," answered Jason, "but they have to have some sort of weakness."
"What, I mean, how can you tell?" asked Kat, a bit confused.
"Well, it's practically impossible for them to be entirely invulnerable. There has to be something," explained Tanya. At least that was what she hoped, if not they were in deep trouble.
"How very perceptive," said Anory suddenly. The Rangers turned around quickly to face him. The wizard looked them over carefully; they were obviously more perceptive than he'd been led to believe. The boy Jason seemed to be the leader of the three and taking him down would be the first order of business. "But you'll never live long enough to figure it out. Now, enough of this useless talk, I think it's time for you to face off against my creations."
"Morph," Jason told his friends. "We'll stand a better chance that way."
"Zeo Ranger I - Pink!" Kat called.
"Zeo Ranger II - Yellow!" Tanya added.
"Back to Action!" Jason cried to finish his own transformation.
Anory looked over at his army eagerly. He had long awaited this moment. Now he would find out if all of his hard work would pay off. "Go!" he ordered. "Attack those three, and don't stop until you've absorbed all of their energy." It was rather odd that they would be able take orders from him, but they had no mind of their own and they existed only to help him carry out his mission.
"Get ready," said Jason, looking back at Tanya and Kat. If Anory was telling the truth about his army, then they definitely had their work cut out for them. To make matters worse, Jason was their weakness since he only had half-powers at best. Nobody had been able to think of a good plan in spite of all the time that the wizard had spent explaining.
"What do we do?" asked Kat.
"Just try to avoid them," answered Tanya. She knew that sounded obvious and probably stupid, but at the moment she just couldn't think of anything else.
"That's it?" questioned Anory, incredulously. "That's your plan?"
"Unless you want to call them off," Jason snapped. "Move!" he called out quickly as he saw one of the creatures coming towards them. Jason sidestepped immediately, and it flew past him and splattered on the ground.
"Eww," murmured Kat. "They're just blobs. How are we supposed to fight them?" she called out exasperated. Suddenly all of Anory's army started rushing in towards them.
"Just stay out of their way!" shouted Tanya, leaping up into the air. Jason and Kat followed her example.
"That won't help you!" jeered Anory. He held his hands in front of him and fired energy blasts at the three of them as they landed. They moved quickly out of the way, but the wizard did not slow down. He continued firing at them for a long while, and showed no signs of wearing down at all. Jason, Tanya, and Kat on the other hand seemed to be having increasing difficulty with getting out of the way.
"I don't believe it," complained Jason, dodging as best he could.
"What?" asked Kat. She was slightly out of breath, but she didn't dare slow down for fear of being knocked out of the air and down below where those creatures were waiting. Can't go down, and it's getting too hard to stay up here, she thought grimly. "What is it?" she repeated to Jason.
"He isn't slowing down," explained Jason.
"Then you mean..." started Kat.
"He's got infinite energy," finished Tanya.
"Are you sure?" questioned Kat, sceptically. Even though Anory was not slowing down at all, she still found it hard to believe that he would never run out of energy.
"Yeah, pretty sure," answered Jason. "Or as close to infinite as he can get."
"Otherwise, he should have slowed down a little by now," reasoned Tanya.
"Oh! I don't believe it. He never runs out of energy, and they absorb it. Can this possibly get any worse?" she complained.
"I think - Kat, look out!" called out Jason.
"Wha... oh!" she exclaimed as she saw a beam coming towards her. She dropped quickly to the floor, and the beam passed inches from her, shearing off a fragment of her helmet.
"Don't stay down!" called out Tanya, hurriedly.
"Right!" she called back as she jumped back up. A few more feet away, Anory's army had gathered to pounce on her. "He's too fast!" she called out.
"You're right girl," said Anory, stopping for a short moment from his attacks. "Why don't you just save me the trouble and give up now?"
"Not a chance!" shot back Tanya. "Jason," she said over the helmet communicator. "Jason!"
Jason started and looked up suddenly. His Morphin Warrior costume lacked a communicator and he had to rely on the Power to transmit Tanya's words. Unfortunately the blobs were absorbing any background energy, making the task difficult. "What is it?" he replied.
"I'll distract him," said Tanya. "You try to hit him from behind. Maybe a surprise attack will give us an advantage, all right?"
"Got it," answered Jason. He watched Tanya and Anory carefully, waiting for his chance to attack.
"Hey Android!" called out Tanya aloud. Anory glared back at her menacingly. Tanya swallowed loudly. _Can't turn back now, _ she thought quickly overcoming her fears. "Why don't you just fight us, instead of hiding behind them?" she challenged.
The wizard looked irritated.
"I think you are a little too cocky," he replied.
"Why don't you come up here and prove that?" taunted Tanya.
"Tanya, what are you doing?" whispered Kat, surprised that Tanya was acting so confidently. They both knew that Anory was not someone to be taken lightly. Kat also knew that Tanya was not unlikely to rush in without a plan.
"Don't worry," she told her quietly. "Just wait for Jason to attack and join in."
"Oh, okay," she answered with a quick nod.
"Well Anory?" provoked Tanya.
"Perhaps I will," he replied, rising up into the air slowly using a levitation spell.
Jason watched intently, waiting to spring. If they could just defeat Anory, then maybe those things he created wouldn't know what to do. If that happened, then they had a better chance of escape. But there was still one thing that worried him, if he killed the wizard and that caused the alternate dimension to collapse, what then? There was another possibility, which didn't seem much better than the first. The alternate dimension might stay stable, but they had no way of getting out. None of them knew how Anory was able to create it, and it was unlikely that they'd be able to figure it out.
"Tanya!" called out Kat, interrupting his thoughts. He looked up and saw Anory ready to strike at the Yellow Zeo Ranger. Tanya quickly focused on her task; fighting Anory was going to take everything she had.
Tanya and Anory watched each other carefully. Neither of them wanted to make the first move. Jason and Kat also watched closely, Jason waiting to attack, and Kat waiting to help if needed.
"Well?" questioned Anory, impatiently. "You wanted to fight me, so why are you still waiting?"
"I was going to give you the advantage of going first," lied Tanya, "but since you don't want to, I will." With that she disappeared from where she was using the short-range teleport intended for entering Zords. A second later she reappeared behind Anory. She swung quickly at Anory's head, but the wizard had already turned around. Tanya pulled back quickly and avoided being caught, but Anory was starting to attack. Tanya tried to launch her own counterattack, but it was all she could do to just keep up with Anory. For a wizard, he was a remarkably good fighter.
"What's the matter?" jeered Anory. "Was taking me on too much for you?"
Tanya remained silent, not sure what to say. The only answer she could think of came in the form of a physical assault, which she did immediately. However, the results were exactly the same as before. She attacked, and Anory was easily able to avoid her. Anory kicked her hard in the side. Tanya gasped in pain, but Anory wasn't done yet. He continued his assault on the now practically immobilised Tanya. He hit Tanya on the side of her head, and Tanya fell downwards.
_He's too strong, _ thought Tanya as she tried to regain her balance.
"I think it's time to end this," said Anory, abruptly. He had no further interest in fighting Tanya, and he was ready to move on to more important matters. He held his arms out in front of him, charging for a blast.
"NOW Jason!" Tanya signalled, hoping the Morphin Warrior would hear her this time.
"Hi-yah!" yelled Jason from behind them.
Anory looked startled and began to turn around. Tanya immediately disappeared from where she was and reappeared next to Kat. Jason had drawn his broadsword and unleashed a ball of fire at the unsuspecting monster.
"Zeo I Pink Firecloud!" Kat called as she added her own abilities to the mix.
It made its way to Anory in a flash. Anory put out his hands to block Jason's blast, but Jason poured more energy into a second attack. With the added power of Kat's energy, for a short moment it looked as though they had a chance of winning. But then, all of the sudden, one of Anory's creations bounced up into the air and came between Jason and Anory.
"Jason! STOP!" called out Kat hurriedly.
The creature was already starting to absorb Jason's energy, and Anory had long since moved out of the way. Jason stopped quickly as he realised what had happened. It was too late to stop Anory from stealing his energy though, and left him defenceless as the villain retaliated with a vicious chop.
Jason struggled as the villain gripped him around the neck. He kicked violently but his struggles ceased when he saw Anory draw an object from subspace. It was a needle filled with a black liquid. Jason tried to get away but the point had already pierced his uniform and the liquid was flowing into his veins.
Jason's eyes widened with pain and he tried to scream. He failed; all his attempts at movement failed. His breathing became tight and the world seemed to blur. He slumped to the ground and demorphed. He opened his mouth to speak but the darkness claimed him for a moment.
"Jason, what's wrong?" questioned Kat, worried.
"What did you do to him?" demanded Tanya, angrily.
Anory laughed. "He was getting in my way," he told them, smirking.
"Answer me!" repeated Tanya.
"Temper, temper," chided the wizard. "If you really want to know, I injected him with a magical virus."
"A virus?" exclaimed Tanya.
"It's a virus I picked up while I was travelling through space. I thought it might be useful, but I hadn't imagined this is how I would use it," said Anory.
"And do you have the cure?" demanded Tanya.
"Hmm...no," answered Anory, smirking. "I didn't plan on helping anyone I infected."
Tanya and Kat looked at him, shocked. If he didn't have the antidote, then what could they do? He had said it was a virus he had found somewhere in space, it was unlikely that there would be anything on Earth, which could act as the antidote.
Jason stared up at the sky, still confused. _A virus, _ he thought, _I didn't know one could act so fast. _ He wondered what else this virus did... if it would kill him. He wanted to stand up, but it seemed as though the virus had paralysed him. He looked up at Kat and Tanya who were still standing over him. He smiled at them weakly. As long as they were still there, he would be all right. _Now, _ he thought, _I just need a little rest... just a little rest. _ He closed her eyes slowly and almost immediately fell into a deep sleep.
"Jason!" repeated Tanya, shaking him a little, but he didn't respond.
"One down, two to go," Anory proclaimed. "Make it easy and surrender now."
He could feel the Yellow Ranger's temper simmering beneath her helmet. She suddenly seemed more powerful than he had believed. The Pink Ranger was no less threatening as she tried to help the former Gold Ranger.
_A bond of love and friendship,_ he realised.
He had underestimated the closeness these Rangers felt and the anger they would feel if one of their number was hurt. He decided it would be wise to end his mission swiftly and retreat to a safe place where he could study and then destroy these Rangers. But he had enough power to finish the Morphin Warrior first.
"Avada Kedavra!" he practically screamed as he poured all of his hate into the spell.
Avada Kedavra was one of the oldest spells known and feared by forces of good and evil. It was also among the oldest and most difficult to conjure. When struck by the spell served only one purpose: to kill. When cast it ordered the body to die through whatever means possible. It could be a heart attack or the simultaneous shattering of every bone and organ in the victim's body. One thing was certain, the spell when cast was deadly unless blocked. Against an already crippled and powerless victim death was certain.
"Zeo I Power Shield!" Kat cried.
The Zeo I Power Weapon enlarged to four times its normal size as Kat moved in front of her fallen friend. The shield absorbed most of lethal spell, but not enough to prevent Jason's condition from worsening. But now Anory had to face something few had witnessed but all feared: a furious Pink Zeo Ranger.
Kat was a gentle person and never deliberately set out to hurt anybody. Even when she had been under Rita's spell it had taken constant enforcement from Rita's spell before Kat had tried to hurt the Rangers. And since the day when she had not only shrugged off the spell, but had resisted all attempts by Rita to replace it. Like most human she felt emotions, but rarely pure rage.
There are certain stereotypes when dealing with Rangers. Black Rangers were often the more playful members of the team while Red Rangers were considered to make the best battle commanders. For the most part Pink Rangers were considered as healers who reached out to help those in pain. But that was only part of the story. Pink Rangers didn't just feel the need to help those in pain, they hated to see others in pain and fought to do whatever they could to stop the pain. Kat was no longer linked to the Morphin Grid, but she was still a Pink Ranger. Unable to do anything to help Jason her rage found another outlet: the being who had caused that pain.
"Destructo Disk!" she yelled.
The Power Shield reverted to its normal size but now retained the full energy of Avarda Kedarva curse. When she threw it the residual energy was transformed into a force of light and as the disk flew towards Anory, the wizard fled.
Anory was not stupid. Even as the energy disk approached the place where he was fighting with Tanya he started to retreat. But the disk hit him, as did the Zeo II Power Punch. Raw energy ripped open the pocket dimension as Tanya, Jason, Kat and Anory were abruptly returned to Earth.
Samoht Revilo sensed the sudden burst of magical energy and at once sought it out. He could sense Kat and Tanya as they fought something. He sensed a third signature that he recognised as an almost non-existent Jason.
He teleported to help in the hope of getting there before one of his friends was hurt. When he arrived he discovered that he was already too late. Jason lay unmoving while Tanya and Kat pummelled the man Samoht assumed to be the culprit. He watched as Tanya summoned the power of her Zeo Battle Helmet and destroyed the wizard.
He was already moving as Kat and Tanya collapsed from exhaustion. He drew his sword but there was nothing left for him to fight. The two Zeo Rangers had already finished the job without him; he had wasted his time and risked revealing his identity for nothing. Then he looked at Jason and realised there was still something for him to do.
Gathering the three Rangers together he teleported to the Power Chamber where Zordon and Alpha were quick to deal with the two Zeo Rangers before turning their attention to Jason. There was little Samoht could do but watch and wonder just what had happened to Zeo Rangers III, IV and V?