Author's note: Thank all of you for your overwhelming response to "Future Shock", and for those who demanded a sequel, your wish is granted. This takes place about two months after Future Shock.
Disclaimer: Tommy, Jen, Trip, Katie, Ransik, Captain Logan, Time Force and all likenesses are own by Disney. I am using them without permission, so don't sue me. Camille Summers, Ransorg, Lt. CaSteel and all other original characters are mine. If you use them without permission, I will sue you!
(*) Parallels (*)
It had taken almost two days to track him down, and after an in-depth search, they'd tracked the mutant down on an abandoned warehouse on the south side of town. It was part of the city that hadn't been touched in years, making it the perfect place to hide out.
Jen and Katie headed down the dark alley together, each of them with a disrupter in hand. No one from Time Force had gone through that part of the city before, so neither of them knew what to expect.
In the distance, they both heard a loud crash, and tacitly agreed to check it out. They rushed to the end of the alley, eventually stopping at a dumpster. Jen motioned to Katie, who nodded, aiming her disrupter at the dumpster itself.
"Time Force, you're under arrest. Come out with your hands up," Jen said, walking over to the dumpster and opening up the lid.
Sure enough, a mutant stood up in the dumpster, allowing Jen and Katie to get a good look at him. The first noticeable thing was that the mutant had 6 arms, and from first glance, had four eyes. Its skin appeared to me scaly, and a thick, mucus type covering all over its body. The smell alone was enough to make Katie cringe.
"All that searching and all we had to do was follow the smell," she turned to the mutant, pulling out a set of handcuffs. "Alright Kromar, don't try anything stupid like……" she was cut short as the mutant jumped out the dumpster, running down the alley. "Run," she sighed.
Jen and Katie rushed down the alley after the mutant, eventually coming to a two way street. Jen nodded as she and Katie rushed off in different directions. It was Jen who caught up with the mutant in front of the warehouse as it tried to break through the front door.
"Why do you mutants always make it so hard on yourself? Just come in quietly Kromar and we'll….." again, the mutant cut her short as it broke through the door and ran in, only to be cut off by Katie, who aimed a disrupter at its head.
"They always run," she sighed, cuffing the mutant not once, not twice, but three time to accommodate all six arms.
"And we always catch them," Jen reminded her.
The two of them led the mutant to a truck around the corner from the warehouse, where Jen tossed it in the back of the truck, closing and locking the door behind it.
"I miss the good ole' days Jen," Katie admitted as the two of them got in the truck, making their way towards Time Force headquarters.
"What do you mean?"
"You know what I mean. Time Force has us on street duty. Us. We're the most decorated unit in Time Force, and we've been reduced to street duty; running through the city catching common criminals. We should be stopping some temporal incursions, saving the universe from half mutant/half org renegades hell bent and controlling the world, traveling back in time to prevent infractions. Something. Anything other than street duty," she explained.
"I know what you mean, but I've been enjoying the easy assignments the last few days. After saving the universe everyday for the last few years, it's nice to have a break," she mentioned as she drove.
"Besides, with all the extra time you've got, you've been able to spend a lot more time with Ransik. Haven't you?" Jen brought up.
"You're right, but I'd kill for some action," she said.
"Watch what you wish for Katie, you just might get it," she warned her.
A few minutes later, the two of them pulled into main headquarters. They stepped out the truck where Lt. CaSteel greeted them. "How'd you do tonight ladies?" he inquired.
"We caught Kromar over on the south side, take him to containment room four and have been locked away before he tries to run again. I'll do the paper work in the morning," Jen informed him.
"You got it," he turned to walk away, but paused. "Oh yeah, Captain Logan wants to see you in the science lab. He says it's important," he mentioned.
"Thanks CaSteel," they said, heading for the science lab.
They stepped into the elevator together. "Level seven, science lab," Katie said. And just like that, they were on their way.
Jen couldn't help but agree with Katie; things had been too quiet over the last few weeks. After their mission to stop Ransorg, she'd taken the time to relax a while. She was still adjusting to Tommy being in the 31st century, and trying to come to terms with her feelings for him, but the fact was, it was too much time.
'Damn, what I wouldn't give for a distraction. Something to stop me from thinking about Tommy,' she thought to herself.
After they corrected all the infractions in the time line, she reviewed the history logs again. As it turns out, Wes never married anyone else. In fact, he remained single until he retired from the Silver Guardians in 2005. She wondered why he walked away from the Guardians and Bio-Lab, but it still struck her as strange that shortly after his retirement, there was no mention of him in the history logs. All she did know was that he married someone named Renee, then disappeared.
Her thoughts were broken as the two of them stepped off the elevator and into the science lab, where Trip, Captain Logan and Tommy were waiting for them.
"How was the patrol?" the Captain asked.
"We captured Kromar. CaSteel is taking him to containment now," Katie said.
"So what's going on Captain?" Jen inquired.
"We asked you to come here so Trip could show you his latest invention," he said.
Trip turned their attention to what appeared to be a giant circle. The circle itself was at least 10 feet tall, maybe 6 or 7 feet wide, and on each end of the circle were a set of control panels. "This is the Quantum Slipstream Dimensional Portal," Trip said with pride in his voice.
"Great, a hula hoop. Very nice," Katie said.
"It's not a hula hoop, it's a……"
"I know, a Quantum slip thingie," she said.
"That's enough Lt," Captain Logan said, stepping in.
"Okay Trip, you've got all of us here. What does the Portal do?" Tommy asked, speaking for the entire group.
"Every decision you make from the miniscule to the monumental determines the direction your life will go; what you ate for breakfast this morning, running a red light and slowing down, all these things have an adverse effect on your life. The theory is that each decision you make, or don't make, can and does happen in an alternate reality," he explained.
"We know that already Trip, Ransorg was from a parallel reality, remember?"
"Yes, but the only way he could travel here was by weakening the barriers between realities. What the Quantum Slipstream does is open a stable gateway between those worlds, allowing us to travel back and forth not only through time, but through dimensions," he told them.
"Are you sure that's a good idea Trip? The last time someone crossed over from a different reality, the world almost came to an end," Tommy pointed out.
"I know, but this is under controlled circumstances. It's in a closed environment, so there is no chance of something like that happening again," he said.
"But why even want to travel to other realities?" Katie inquired.
"When Time Force was originally founded, the counsel stated that no one would be allowed to travel back in time and alter the time line. Temporal Investigations was created to ensure that wouldn't happen, but as you know, there are times when someone or something escapes to the past and tries to alter history. That's where we come in. Now that it's common knowledge that parallel realities exist, it's only a matter of time before someone tries to crossover, or worse, someone from another reality tries to come here with the intention of altering our history. Again, that's where we come in," Trip explained.
"What do you mean?"
"The counsel has decided to assign a special unit to deal with these types of incursions, and I recommended the four of you," Captain Logan told them.
"Because you've shown you can deal with these types of situations, and with your morphers, you're the only ones unaffected by any changes that may happen. You're the only ones qualified for an assignment like this," he said.
"You said the four of us, what about Lucas?" Jen inquired.
"Lucas was approached with the idea, but opted against it. After his run in with Ransorg a few months ago, he has no desire to have anything to do with parallel realities," Trip said.
"So what about the fifth morpher?" Katie asked.
"What about Alex? He would be perfect for the job," Tommy brought up.
Captain Logan shook his head. "No, Alex is the head of Temporal Investigations. He'll have his hands full with that. Instead, I've decided to assign someone to your group who is considered an authority on parallel realities; Camille Summers," he said.
"Camille? I thought she was fired?" Jen pointed out.
"Yes, she was, but again, Time Force needs the most qualified people for this assignment. Camille fits that description," the Captain said.
"So when do we start?"
"I want all of you to know that this is a voluntary assignment. Lucas turned down the offer, and no one in Time Force would think any less of you if you turned it down as well. Take 24 hours, and if you're sure, meet me here at 0800 hours for your first mission briefing. Dismissed," he told them.
The four of them remained silent as they walked out the room.