Notes: I do not own Mortal Kombat, Mortal Kombat: Conquest, Earthrealm, Outworld, etc. etc. This is all for fun and I do not make a profit from any of this. Well except for getting this damn story out of my head. The only thing I do claim is the mystery woman in black and gray. Don't worry she has a name, but it's a secret for now. However, if anyone is interested in borrowing her for a day or two get in touch with me. Be aware that I will not give out any info about her until it has been revealed in one of the stories.

This story takes place right after the final episode of the series. I am pretending that this is the next season of Mortal Kombat: Conquest so all the episodes are considered canon for this story. If I'm off a little in my facts, let me know. I don't have the DVD's, and I am missing a few episodes I recorded on tape. (Damn, niece. Why did she have to record Power Rangers over them?) BTY, big thanks to MKO's Zentile for correcting my spelling on some of the names. Update: Decided to make some long over due corrections to this story since I'm stuck on my current one.

Chapter One: Second Chances

(Shao Kahn's Throne Room)

The gloating laughter began anew as Kahn saw the despair on the once mighty thunder god's face as the powerless deity kneeled before him. Rayden could only mourn the death of Earthrealm and his friends. Silently he cursed himself for his carelessness.

Suddenly the laughter stopped as if someone closed a very thick door. Rayden looked up to see that the Emperor and his minions were frozen in place and if time had stopped. "This is not good." A female voice spoke. Hope filled Rayden's heart, as he looked beyond the Emperor and saw HER sitting on the stairs leading up to the throne. The woman was dressed in clothes of the same cut has Rayden's, but where his was once white she wore black and where his were blue hers were gray. Her hair was long and whiter than even his. Eyes of crystal blue looked over a dark scarf that covered the bottom half of her face.

"You!" he rasped.

"It seems you messed up rather nicely this time, my friend." She sighed, "You may not goof often, but when you do…DAMN!"

She stood up and approached the still kneeling male. While she did this, he mentally thanked the Elder Gods for her timely arrival.

"At least this time I'm able to help." She said as she began to untie him.

Rayden started at the 'this time,' he knew he had made mistakes in the past that he wished he could have undone. This was only the worse of them, but it sounded as if the masked one was watching him wanting to help but held back as he was when he wanted to help his mortal friends.

"Shame" she mumble to herself "Seeing you all tied up like this is bringing back some fond memories, unfortunately even I don't have the time."

Rayden decided to ignore that comment, it wasn't the first time she would say strange or disturbing things as if to provoke or shock him. Once the ropes were off, he stood up slowly. His body loudly reminding him of the abuse he received from the Emperor's torturers.

She looked over him critically as if trying to determine if he was fit enough to travel and asked, "Well, are you ready to leave? I have a bit of a tangle here and I for one want to get it straighten out as soon as possible."

"Yes, but where..." Rayden replied but was cut off when the room sudden began to spend. Dizziness set in and Rayden fell back to his knees. Once the spinning stopped he noticed they were now at the tavern that he spent that last night drinking and…

"I see you haven't lost that weakness of yours for blondes?" commented his rescuer.

Rayden stood back up and turned to see what she was referring to. Not surprisingly, he saw himself with the blonde in his lap and a mug in his hand.

"You know having a night off once in a while is okay, and even a good idea. But at least make double sure everything is okay before you do and please stay halfway sober. You do have two important jobs and could be called upon at anytime." She said.

Rayden only blushed and stayed silent.

"Okay, Protector of Earthrealm, here's the plan. Even gods cannot be in the two places at the same time, so once time gets going again you will be merged with party boy over there. You WILL remember what happened on that particular time thread we just left. Use that knowledge. Also, know this—any rule that can not be broken can be bent. That's how Shao Kahn was able to take over Earthrealm and get away with it. You can do the same. Believe me; the rules of Mortal Kombat are a great deal more flexible than even you might think. If they weren't, they would have been broken a looonnnngggg time ago."

Rayden was surprised by this speech. Only once before has this mysterious woman stayed around so long or given such direct advice. The few times she had appeared before were limited to this moving him from one 'time thread' to the past and/or a few cryptic hints. Then again, this was the first time he lost an entire realm.

She's right. Kahn didn't exactly break the rules he just bent them. Rayden was mistaken to believe the rules were inflexible, unyielding. Since he didn't actually break any rules, Shao Kahn was going to get away with destroying all that Rayden held dear.

"Also, Rayden, "she continued, "This is most likely the last time I will be able to help you. So if you mess up again…"

Rayden nodded and said, "I understand and thank you for all you have done. In the future I will be more careful, I give you my…"

The woman placed her hand on his mouth to silence him, "Don't make promises, and just do!"

The next thing Rayden knew he was sitting down with the blonde in his lap. The noise in the tavern was almost deafening after the silence. The blonde smiled and giggled at what 'he just' said. "Rayman!" she squealed and rubbed her hand on his thigh. He kissed her on the nose and then said, "Sorry, but I need to get up for a few minutes." Rayden said with a grin, "But don't you worry, I'll be right back." The woman pouted but got up. Rayden kissed the pouted lips as an apology and left the room. In a flash he was gone.

(Hidden Village of Sha-Kana)

In the hidden town of Sha-Kana, the people headed back to their homes after a long day. They all but ignored the signs of the distant storm heading their way. Lighting flooded the distant sky and the low rumble of thunder was barely heard. As if guided, the storm quickly approached the town. As if with a vengeance, lighting struck the altar of Sha Kha shattering the stone. The roar of thunder shook the ground, awaking the dozing worshippers of Sha Kha. Another bolt of lighting hit the stone skull, breaking it in half. The scream of the release of energy nearly drowned out the ground shaking thunder. Lighting struck again and again, shatter what remained of the unholy alter there was. The ground shook as if fearing the wrath from the skies. Fires began to burn in the grasses and linens surrounding the former altar. People ran from their homes in a panic…

(Kung Lao's Trading Post and School)

Back in Zhu Zin, the ground shook slightly and the slight rumble of thunder was heard. Siro and Kung Lao stopped discussing about Taja's friend breaking into their home.

"You don't think..." Siro began to ask.

"Rayden? No." Kung Lao answered the unfinished question, "He's...busy with a new friend."


Shao Kahn, Emperor of Outworld, and Conqueror of Realms sat on his throne. "Soon," he said to himself, "Soon, Earth will be mine!"

Then a two shadow priests rushed into the throne room and bowed before their ruler.

"What is it?" Kahn demanded.

One of the priests's stepped forward and said, "The portal has been destroyed. It was shattered by lighting from a freak thunderstorm, Great One. "

"What!" roared Shao Kahn.


Back at the tavern, Rayden sat back down and pulled the blonde back onto his lap. "See that didn't take so long did it?" The woman giggled and kissed the thunder god on the check. "All I had to do was a little thundergod business I've been putting off while defending Earthrealm." He took a sip of the wine and then kissed the woman full on the mouth. The woman returned it with a fever. "Why don't we just go now, hmmmmm" he mumbled into her mouth.

The End

Next Time on Mortal Kombat: Conquest……

"Oh, never mind me, " said the woman in gray and black as she turned, "By the way," she said over her shoulder, "Be sure to give Rayden my regards and ask him if those rope burns of his are okay."

One of Queen Vorpax's warrior knelt down and reported, "Your Majesty! Kung Lao is on his way to the temple, to interview a prospective student. He travels alone."