It's been a long time since I've written anything, but I'll let the summary speak for itself. Reviews appreciated. I hope you enjoy.
Disclaimer: All characters, objects, locations, etc, are property of the Power Ranger franchise, and not me. However, this story, is mine.
It was 4:00 pm on a Friday afternoon, in early spring. The weather was absolutely perfect. The sun was shining, the temperatures were great for light t-shirts and shorts. One of the benefits of California living. On a day like that, most of Reefside's younger residents would happily have found themselves outside. And therefore, Cyberspace was a far cry from as crowded as it had been on most afternoons.
There were a few patrons. A few more notable than others. One was a high school senior. The kid with dark brown skin and short cut black hair was in his usual spot at the computers blasting away at some video game or other. He wore a blue t-shirt and a pair of black cargo shorts. Every so often he'd shout at the game, usually something unintelligible.
"Shouldn't you be doing homework?" The red headed woman behind the counter with a cleaning cloth and glass called out to him. After all, he'd been at it since he showed up around 3:15 with two other teenagers. She was dressed in jeans and a brown and grey blouse. Somewhat more respectable for the adult owner of a local teenage hotspot.
"Mostly caught up, Haley" the teenager called back, sticking his tongue out slightly as his battled some particularly difficult enemy in his game. Haley just shook her head and turned her attention toward a girl with dark blonde hair seated at one of the tables, her books and notes open all around her. The girl had on a pair of black jeans. Her grey shirt had bright yellow sleeves.
"Glad he is," the teen muttered in response, frowning at the page of notes she was on. Her pen stopped moving as she studied the paper.
Haley gave the girl a sympathetic smile. "Aww… that bad, huh Kira?" The girl just groaned in response, causing Haley to laugh, as a few more teenagers walked into the café, scattering themselves across the booths. "Trent?" Haley called into the back room behind the counter. "Customers!"
"Coming" was the reply as a teenager with white skin and straight, mussed up, black hair emerged from the kitchen. He wore a white button down, short sleeve shirt open over a light grey t-shirt and a pair of khaki shorts. Pad in hand, pen behind his ear, he shot Kira a hello smile, before approaching the latest customers.
"Where's Connor?" Haley asked Kira, stepping out from behind the counter and pulling up a chair in across from her.
"No idea," the girl replied, putting her pencil down, yawning and stretching her muscles. The teen from the video games groaned as the screen turned red with explosions. He stood up, turned off the PC, and walked over to the two women seated towards the front of the café, placing himself in a chair between the two.
"How about you Ethan," Haley asked. "Have you seen Connor around?"
Ethan shook his head, and stole a chip from the bowl on the table. Kira glared at him for a moment, but then folded her arms on the table and lay her head down against them, muttering about being too tired to care.
"Sleeping well, lately?" Ethan asked her. Without lifting her head, Kira shook it in silent answer. "Why?" Ethan laughed. Kira lifted her head this time to glare icicles at him. He damn well knew why. "Seriously? You know," Ethan started, then lowered his voice to a mere whisper, "Mesogog never attacks the same way twice." He allowed his voice to return to normal speaking volume. "Sleep should be a relatively safe endeavor. You should try it some time."
"Leave her be, Ethan," Trent told him, noticing Kira jerk wide awake at the mention of the name Mesogog. "I'm surprised you've been able to sleep after what happened last week." He finished taking the drink orders to the tables of teenagers, and left them be for a while. If they wanted food, they'd flag him down. He slipped into the last seat at the table, across from Ethan, and wrapped his arm around Kira, who was still glaring at Ethan.
"It's not just that," she grumbled, although she would admit, it was mostly the fact that the teenagers' enemy, Mesogog, had just recently sent monsters of mass destruction to invade the dreams of her, and her fellow teammates. Even in their sleep, it appeared there would be no rest for the world's current team of Power Rangers. "With all the… activity," Kira stated, after searching for just the right word, "I'm way behind on my school work. Even in Dr. O's class."
"He'd understand," Haley told the girl, reaching out and patting her on the top of the hand.
"I'd understand what?" A new voice joined the conversation. A man, roughly the same age as Haley, entered Cyberspace. Had he not been the woman's best friend, and frequented the location often, he definitely would have appeared out of place. Clad in dark grey dress pants and a black sweater, he peered at the group at the table from behind his glasses, a messenger style black leather briefcase slung over his shoulder. He pulled up a chair, squeezing in between Haley and Trent. He pulled the briefcase off his shoulder and ran his hand through his spiked short brown hair.
"Kira's behind on her homework," Haley told him, "including the work you assigned." The teen in question just turned slightly red and dropped her gaze to the table.
Dr. Thomas Oliver, or Dr. O, as the kids referred to him, sighed. "How about you two?" he asked the male teens at the table. "You behind on work?" Both boys shook their heads. Trent muttered something about his dad would kill him if he fell behind on school work. "Sorry Kira, if the boys can keep up, so can you."
"Tommy!" Haley scolded as she left the table to get back to work behind the counter, but her friend just shook his head.
"I learned to manage, so can they." Kira nodded her acceptance and turned her attention back to the work on her table, while Trent went to check on his customers. "By the way, where's Connor? If Kira's behind, you know he is."
"No idea," Ethan replied. "He mentioned something about the weather, and soccer, after school, and the next thing I know, he's gone."
"Ah," Tommy replied. He left his briefcase at the table with Ethan and Kira, and wandered over to the counter where Haley was. "You think I'm too hard on them?" he asked in a low voice so the kids couldn't hear him. Haley peered around him to where Ethan had begun to help Kira with her work. She turned back to Tommy with a small smile on her face.
"No," she said, with a sigh. "But you could be easier on them. After all, you do know what it's like to be in their shoes, you know with all those extracurricular activities. Maybe you could cut them a little bit of a break."
Tommy shook his head. "Part of the job." Haley wasn't sure if he was referring to his job as their high school science teacher, their mentor, or their 'job'. "They've got to learn how to balance," Tommy continued. "If I did it, they can too."
"From what heard," Haley started, "you weren't always very successful at it. Tommy glared at her for a moment and then nodded.
"Who told you that?"
"Billy," she replied, "Last time he contacted. You were busy," she emphasized the word 'busy' in her statement. "So we chatted for a while. Discussed new technologies, and a certain perpetual uniform wearer."
"Shut it," Tommy told her. Spinning round on the bar stool he'd seated himself on. He leaned back on the counter on his elbows, and observed the teenagers. Both Trent and Ethan were helping Kira at that point, although Trent was also making sure he waited on Haley's customers, as that was what she was paying him to do. "See," he nodded towards them, "they're learning teamwork." Haley just hit him with the cloth she was using to clean the counter, and went back to her work.
Meanwhile, the teens were chatting while Kira was finishing up her work. "See, it wasn't so bad," Ethan told her, as she finished the last calculus problem she'd been having trouble with. With his and Trent's help, she was caught up enough that she was able to take a break. Trent brought the group over some new fruit punch Haley was trying out, and slipped back into his seat opposite Ethan.
"I still think Dr. O could have gone a bit easier on us," Kira told him, leaning back in her chair, drink in hand. She took a long draw off the straw. "This is pretty good," she muttered. Trent nodded in agreement, but she wasn't sure which statement he was agreeing with. "You would think, having been through it himself. I mean it's not like we haven't got extra stuff we need to do."
"True," Trent agreed with her. "And didn't he say, back then he had a choice. None of this whole, accept it or die, stuff we've got to deal with."
"I still say it's not that bad," Ethan put in. Kira and Trent shot him looks. "What? It isn't." His friends just shook their heads.
"Whatever," Kira told him, taking a last sip off her punch, and closing up her books. She stood and stretched again. "I'm going to head home and see if I can finish some of this work up, since our weekend has been commandeered." She shot a glare at Tommy who was back in conversation with Haley behind the counter. "You two leaving?"
Both of her friends shook their heads. Trent mentioned that he was on the clock until 7, while Ethan said something about wanting to try and beat the game he'd been playing earlier. Kira nodded while shoving her books into her book bag, and told them goodbye. Once she was sure she'd gathered all her things, she headed towards the door "See ya, Haley, Dr. O," she called, opening the door. As soon as she was on the pavement she collided with the chest of another teen, he grabbed her shoulders, steadying her.
"Watch where you're going," he laughed, his loose brown hair, hanging in his eyes a little. The teen was wearing a red tank top and a pair of silver and red gym shorts. His black gym shoes were covered in grass and mud. Something that his knees, clothing, and even his face had in common.
Kira didn't even bother to reply to his statement. "Where've you been?" she asked him instead. The youth opened his mouth to respond, but Kira held up her hand to stop him and shook her head. "On second thought, I don't want to know. See you tomorrow," she told him, stepping around him and continuing on her way home.
For his part, the teen frowned, and watched her go, before entering Cyberspace, and spotting Ethan and Trent having a conversation at a table. He walked up to them, pulling out the chair Kira had just vacated, turning it around backwards and sitting down. "What's bugging Kira?" he asked them.
"Where have you been?" Trent replied, answering question with question.
"She's bogged down with homework," Ethan told his friend. "But seriously where've been?"
"Soccer," the teen replied simply. "And it was glorious. I'm in love!"
"Love?" both his friends asked him.
"With the ball right?" Trent added on his own. Connor glared at him.
"Nope, I met a girl." He paused for a moment, thinking back. "No, not a girl. A woman."
"You're in love with an older woman?" Ethan asked his best friend.
"She's not that much older. Couldn't have been more than twenty, twenty-one," Connor replied. "She was beautiful. And so nice. And smart, and funny, and…" Connor's eyes had glazed over as he thought back on his afternoon meeting. "I'm giving her a tour of Reefside tomorrow morning."
"Connor, we have training tomorrow at eight," Trent told him, jerking his head toward Tommy at the counter with Haley. Connor's grin faltered and he groaned.
"Aww man. I totally forgot about that."
"And if Kira's behind on her work, there's a sure bet you are," Ethan added in. Connor just shrugged in response to his statement.
"Think Dr. O will let me out of training," Connor asked.
"No" was the reply he received, as the man in question rejoined the teens at the table.
"Come on Dr. O! Don't you remember what it was like to be young?"
"I'm only twenty seven Connor," Tommy replied.
"Exactly!" Connor exclaimed. Trent and Ethan shot each other looks that said their teammate was going to die. Tommy just looked at the teenager as if he were trying to comprehend what was going on inside his brain. "Please Dr. O? I can't exactly call and say my science teacher is training me in the art of kung fu."
"You could say you have other plans," Tommy reminded him.
"Dr. O, if you'd seen her you'd understand. She's got beautiful long brown hair and these deep brown eyes that you could just stare into all day. And her laugh… Oh her laugh. She laughed when I accidently hit her with the soccer ball. Dr. O! Do you know how rare it is for a girl not to want to kill me if I hit them with a soccer ball."
"Connor," Tommy began, trying to interrupt the teen.
"Please? Just for a little? I don't want to bail on her completely."
"Ugh… fine. But you're staying later than the others. And I want you there no later than noon."
"But that only gives me an hour," Connor pouted.
"You could always come at eight like the others," Tommy told him, picking up his briefcase.
"Noon's fine," the teenager put in hurriedly. He didn't want to push his luck. Tommy nodded to the teens and called out a goodbye to Haley before leaving the cyber café.
"Dude, Kira's going to be pissed," Ethan hissed. "Connor doesn't have to be at training till noon." Trent just nodded his agreement as he and Ethan went back to their respective activities.
Even at eleven thirty in the morning on Saturday, Kira was still fuming. Trent and Ethan could practically see the waves of steam coming off her, despite it being three and a half hours since they'd broken the news that Tommy had allowed Connor the morning off to show some woman around Reefside.
"Kira, you're not breathing right," Tommy called to the only girl on the team as they practiced the Chinte kata he'd been teaching them all morning. His only response was a growl. Tommy shook his head. "Alright, break time. We'll resume when Connor gets here." He'd barely finished his sentence before the girl had disappeared.
"Probably shouldn't have brought up Connor not being here, Dr. O," Ethan told him, patting the downcast looking man on the shoulder. Trent snickered slightly. "I think she's plotting both your deaths."
"What did I do?" Tommy asked, following Trent and Ethan into the house. They'd been practicing in the back yard. Kira was nowhere in sight, so Tommy figured it was safe to sit on his own living room sofa. Ethan was already sitting, having hopped over the back of the sofa, instead of walking the long way around. Trent joined them, after pulling three water bottles out of the fridge. He tossed one to Tommy, and handed another to Ethan before twisting the top off his own and chugging half the bottle.
"Really?" Ethan replied to their teacher. "Between schoolwork, training sessions, and kicking mutant dinosaur ass," Ethan was cut off by a disapproving look from Tommy at his use of the word ass, which the teen decided to ignore, "we rarely have any time for ourselves."
"Forgive me for trying to prevent you from getting yourselves killed," Tommy shot at him, not unkindly, but he didn't appreciate the way it sounded like he was running a military camp.
"We know that Dr. O," Trent told him. "But didn't you just want to relax as a kid?" Tommy shook his head, not in disagreement, but because he didn't quite understand what Trent was saying. "She's tired. We all are. Mesogog attacked your dreams," Trent stated, stressing the last word. "He's even invading our sleep now. We need a break."
Tommy played with the water bottle in his hands, tossing it back and forth as he listened and thought about Trent's words. "I just want you all to be ready. I… Mesogog isn't going to take a break."
"Dr. O, what did you do when you weren't in school or out fighting evil?" Ethan asked him. Tommy looked his dead in the eyes.
"Worked out," he stated flatly. Ethan threw his hands up in the air, and flung himself backwards on the couch. Apparently their teacher was hopeless. Tommy just smiled, knowing the teenager didn't believe him. "But, I do get what you're saying. Alright, we're done for the day," he told them, pausing. "Make that the whole weekend. You earned it."
"Really" Trent asked. "You're not going to call us back and say you changed your mind."
"Nope. I promise. You can have the rest of the weekend off." The two teenagers grinned like mad.
"I'll go call Kir…" Trent began, as he pulled out his cell phone. He was cut off as a series of tones sounded from each of the wrists of the three men in the room. Ethan groaned and threw himself back against the couch again, while Tommy, who'd been in the process of walking into the kitchen to fix himself a snack came back to stand behind Trent. "So much for a break," Trent muttered, knowing full well, what those tones meant. Tommy nodded to him to answer. Trent brought his wrist up to his mouth, pressed a button and spoke into the device that resembled a bracelet "Go ahead." Tommy and Ethan moved a bit closer so that they could hear.
"Trent," Connor's voice came through. They could hear commotion behind him. "So glad you answered quickly. Had to give my date the slip."
"Get to the point," Ethan hissed.
"Sorry. Tyrranodrones EVERYWHERE!" he stressed.
"Where are you?" Tommy asked him, knowing the boy would know he meant general vicinity and not his current hiding spot.
"Middle of the park. They just appeared and started attacking. No warning. No mutant with them either."
"We're on our way," Trent told him, cutting the connection.
"Alright gentlemen, time to go to work," Tommy told them. Both teens nodded, standing up beside him.
Ethan gave his wrist a sharp twist, allowing his morpher to appear. He flipped up the dino plate on the morpher and pressed the morph button shouting "Dino Thunder, Power Up!" At the same time, Tommy and Trent both gave their wrists the same sharp twist. As Ethan spoke, Tommy took the key to his morpher, inserted into the piece on his wrist and gave it a turn.
At the same time, Trent called out "White Ranger, Dino Power!" Pulling his morpher close to his chest and pressing the morph button. Seconds later, the Blue, Black, and White rangers stood in their place. "You two go on ahead, I'll contact Kira," Trent told them.
"Right," both Ethan and Tommy stated, giving him a nod. They raced out into the back yard, and Trent heard the sound of the Blue Raptor Cycle, and Black Dino ATV start up and race away.
Trent pressed the button on his morpher that would contact Kira and spoke her name.
"I know already," she replied. "Heard everything, on my way."
"Gottcha, just making sure," Trent told her, smirking beneath his helmet. "Meet you there."
Connor in the meantime was cursing his luck. The morning had not gone according to plan. He'd met up with the woman from the day before at about 10:30 in the morning outside of Cyberspace, and had spent nearly the next hour showing her around the area, hoping to secure a more romantic type date for another day. Unfortunately, for him, the woman was just being nice when she took him up on his offer to show him around, and thought he was just a sweet high schooler. They were walking through the park as the time when Connor needed to leave was approaching when they'd heard shouting, and spotted the Tyrranodrones. Connor made some weak excuse and abandoned the girl, cursing as he did.
He was still cursing when he heard the sounds of the raptor cycles and ATVs pulling up somewhere behind him, as he delivered a roundhouse kick to the head of one of the mutant creatures. "Took you long enough," he shouted.
Ethan shook his head and Trent snickered.
"It's not my fault your date got interrupted," Tommy told him.
"Wasn't a date," Connor stated, his teammates joining the fight. "She said she's too old for me," he added, his voice sounding dejected.
"Ouch, harsh," Ethan told him. Connor shrugged.
"On her way," Trent replied. "Head's up," he added. "We've got company." Most of the Tyrranodrones were defeated, but it was then that a black armored cyborg showed up. "What do you want Zeltrax?"
"None of your business White Ranger," the half robot man called back.
"Anything you're involved in is our business," Connor shouted. The cyborg snickered.
"Very well," he stated, stepping to the side and revealing some demented looking dinosaur creature. The creature had the head of a raptor, but thick legs like a brontosaurus. In the middle of its chest was a clock. "I think it's time you all were extinct. Chronosaurus, they're all yours." Zeltrax pressed a button, and suddenly an invisiportal appeared. One moment he was there, the next he was gone.
"You've got to be kidding," Ethan stated, studying the creature, which was by far one of the weirdest looking things he'd ever seen. "Extinct? Someone needs to get Zeltrax some new lines."
"You're telling me," Trent added.
"The bad guys never have the best come backs," Tommy told them, but he and the three other rangers present shifted into fighting stance. "Ready?"
"Ready," the three replied, and the four of them charged the creature.
"I don't think so rangers. Back we go," Chronosaurus laughed. One moment the rangers were running forward, and the next thing they knew, they were back where they'd been standing, and Zeltrax was jumping into the invisiportal.
"What just happened?" Trent asked.
"I have no idea," Tommy replied.
"Come and get me rangers," the mutant taunted, hoping back and forth from foot to foot, looking like it was having the time of its.
"Grrr…." Connor growled, irritated. The four rangers charged again.
"Uh uh uh," Chronosaurus stated, shaking his hand at them like you would a naughty child. Once again, the rangers' forward motion halted, and they ended up right back where they started, with Zeltrax jumping through the portal. This time, Ethan noticed the hands on the clock on his chest had slowed to a halt, but they'd been spinning backwards. The mutant dinosaur was taunting them again.
"I get it," Ethan stated. "He's reversing time."
"What?" A new voice asked, as a yellow clad ranger joined up. "And what the heck is that thing."
"YAY, the yellow ranger has joined the fun," the 'thing' cheered. "Come on rangers, I'm getting bored."
"Don't," Ethan shouted, but his teammates didn't hear him, charging forward again, this time Kira was in the lead. Ethan just sighed and crouched down, keeping his eyes on Chronosaurus' chest. Just as he thought, right before the rangers reached him, the hands on the clock began to spin backwards, and his teammates ended up right beside him. For his part, Ethan was standing, having never used his own muscles to return from a crouched position.
"What the?" Kira stated.
"I told you, he's reversing time," Ethan stated again. Trent, Tommy, Connor, and Kira gave him questioning looks from behind their visors. Ethan sighed. "The clock," he stated, pointing at the creature he'd begun demolishing the playground equipment. "Everytime we rush him, the hands on the clock spin backwards, always stopping at the same point."
"So he's rewinding time?" Tommy asked. "As in sending us backwards."
"Not much, but enough that we can't get near him, yeah," Ethan confirmed.
"So a close range attack is not going to work." Connor cast his gaze over the thing. "What if we destroy the clock?"
"It's a theory," Ethan said, shrugging. "We've got to stop him somehow."
"Alright, we'll assemble the Z-Rex blaster," Connor stated. His teammates nodded, and proceeded to call forth their weapons. Blaster assembled, Connor glared toward Chronosaurus. "Hey no brains," Connor shouted, getting the creature's attention. It spun away from the trash can it had been mutilating, and turned its attention back onto the rangers.
"Tisk tisk, rangers. I think someone needs a time out," Chronosaurus stated. The hands on the clock began to spin backwards at the same time that the rangers fired a blast of energy from the Z-Rex blaster. The blast struck Chronosaurus square in the middle of its chest clock. The result was a brilliant flash of light and explosion of sound that drowned out all vision and hearing of the five rangers who were thrust backwards. Connor, Ethan, and Trent were thrown into the air to the right, while Tommy and Kira were propelled to the left.
Slowly the light shrunk back into a small focal point where Chronosaurus had been standing. As it did, sound slowly started to return to the area. However, after the explosion, the bodies of Chronosaurus and the five dino thunder rangers were missing.