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Disclaimer: I don't know who owns anymore so I just say I don't.
Author Notes: A bit on the morbid side. Not in the gross sense but it goes into the side of the ranger job nobody really thinks about. Also I only took like 30 minutes to write it.

Encounter Innocence
by Symbolic Agony

I don't know why I volunteered for this. Tommy told me that he could take care of things and maybe I wasn't ready to handle this part of the job. Still, if it isn't now, it has to be sometime. And maybe there would be a chance it would be okay.

The last attack really took a toll on a few of the buildings. I guess using the zords does have it's price as it is as much our fault as the monster. Maybe their use is more of a curse than a blessing but I really can't say much about it. It is just how Zordon does things and we carry it out.

But this time was a real mess. And this daycare has a full room of children who are trapped. Too much debris for any of the men to get through, but it will probably be nothing for me. The first battle as a ranger I was amazed at just how strong the powers made us.

I follow the directions a few of the fire fighters give. I don't say anything as I get closer to the mess that is my task. Sure enough it doesn't look like it will be too difficult to move, just a lot of it.

Although, what I really want to hear for are voices as I claw through this, some sign that maybe the happy ending was through the caved plaster ceiling and the bent support beams. Then maybe the victory will actually feel like one. I get no such gift.

There's a gap now. I want to stop and peer but the darkness of the room begs for me to break further in. I'm not sure if I am tired or not anymore, as I work of instinct and my own fears. A little more and I can smell the gasses coming from the other end. I know what this means already but I can't stop... not until I know for sure.

I think I can finally get through now. I take a flashlight from one of the men nearby who looked on this whole time. I take a deep breath as I enter a possible tomb.

First a little boy, a toddler lays next to a table, his hand still clenched to his toy truck like he was asleep. I look a little further over to see a two girls huddled next to one another, probably from when the monster first fell into the small building. In the corner of the room a couple cribs line the wall, each with a small baby laying still inside.

I pick one of the babies up and hold it gently against my chest. It has no pulse but it feels better to just hold it. She looks just like I did when I was an infant. So damn peaceful. Then I realize that I had just walked into a tomb of innocents.

I hand the child through the hole to someone waiting on the other side so I can climb back through. I tell them what I saw. Nine children, all about 6 years old or younger were dead. I reclaim this child and carry her out as I rather do it than have them do it.

By the time I leave a crowd of people have surrounded the tape barricade blocking the disaster. Seems like some are looking for people, while others are just wanting to look on. There's a couple guys from school hopping around behind the news cameraman trying to get in the picture too.

As I walk slowly through the masses of people toward the ambulance I hear a cry from a young woman who rushes toward me. She quickly takes the baby from me... I figure it is the mother and surrender. To hear her sobs I feel myself break down too and cry along with her.

What do I say? Sorry we made the 'monster du jour' crash in the building where her child was? I can't say that. As I think of something to say something slips out my mouth. I don't know why I said it but I asked what the baby's name was.

When the mom told me her little girl was named Aisha I felt myself envision the little dead baby who shared my name and what if it had been me.