Birthday Girl-A Continuation of the episode "Stake Out"


Veronica Buckland

Disclaimer: I own Sydney's gifts---that's about it. Power Rangers was owned by Saban but now it is owned by Disney.

Note: I revamped this a bit. Most of it is the same, but I feel that this flows better. Please let me know what you, the Skyney shippers, think---it would be much appreciated.

Sky stood in front of the rather large looking building and looked up at the sign on top of building that heralded it as the NewTech City Mall and Sky's last hope. He felt the breeze brush through his close cropped blondish brown hair and pulled the collar up on his leather jacket to ward off the chill air. He took a deep breath, inhaling cool fresh air and opened his eyes before taking his first step through the sliding glass doors.

Once he was inside he set to work on finding what he was looking for.

A present for Sydney.

"Where do I start?" he asked no one in particular as he looked this way and that at the stores he passed. He had spent the last three hours going around town trying to find something that would practically scream the name 'Sydney'. He stopped and entered a small jewelers shop. An older woman, around fifty or so, stood behind a glass case that held various necklaces. She looked up and gave Sky a genuine smile. "May I help you, young man?" she asked. "I'm just browsing at the moment." he answered politely. She smiled briefly and went over to another part of the counter to help someone else.

Sky was looking down to give the selection of necklaces a brief once over. After a few minutes at that particular spot he let out a sigh, discouraged. He moved towards another glass case against the wall to his right and looked at some lockets.

Sky blinked once. Twice. Three times.

It was perfect for Sydney.

The heart-shaped locket was no bigger than his thumb and hung from a delicate silver chain. On its surface was a dark purple side view of a butterfly, front wing larger than the one behind it. "Have you found anything that you like, young man?" the woman called out. Sky turned his head and gave her a smile. "Yes, I have." he answered.

When she had finished up with her last customer she came out from behind the counter and headed his way. "A wonderful choice," she said when he pointed to the locket he was interested in buying, "this must be for a very special lady." Sky smiled and said, "Yeah, she is." The woman took out a set of keys and unlocked the case before gently lifting the glass up to retrieve Sky's item. Sky followed her to stand in front of the register as she rung up his merchandise. After she was done she wished him a good night and he left the store.

I need something else and it has to make her laugh. He thought as he continued walking past a few stores. Stopping in front of one of those miscellaneous items shops he entered it and headed toward the t-shirts, this time at least he had an idea of what he wanted. He sifted through a rack of t-shirts trying to find that perfect shirt that personified Sydney and he had found it shortly after he had started looking. When he saw what was written on it he had laughed, several people who were browsing the store turned his way with raised eyebrows, wondering what had come over him.

The party had been great and she'd gotten such wonderful things for gifts. The party itself, a subscription to her favorite magazine, a pale pink shirt that had Princess scrawled across the chest in bright pink letters, and RIF, Robotic Interactive Feline. That was her favorite gift. The cat was so small and cute! She had received gifts everyone, except Sky that is. She frowned and put her brush down on the vanity in front of her.

Why didn't Sky get me anything?

She was stopped from going any further then that thought by the sound of someone tapping on the door to the room she shared with Z, who was somewhere other than their room at the moment. "Come in." she answered and turned her head at the sound of the doors sliding open. Sky stepped into the room, somewhat ill at ease, his arms clasped behind his back, or at least that's what Sydney thought.

"Hi, Sydney." He cleared his throat and continued speaking. "Is this a bad time?" Sydney smiled and answered, "No, not at all." She hoped he had a gift for her, but with Sky one could never be certain. One minute he was sweet as apple pie, the next minute he made you want to strangle him. He brought his hands forward and revealed that he did indeed have a gift for her. It was rectangular in shape and the pink plaid paper had a pink glossy bow on top of it. Sydney smiled up at him as he gave her the gift.

"Oh Sky, you shouldn't have!" she said as she happily removed the bow and then the paper to reveal a white box. Sky raised one eyebrow and asked, "Is that 'Sydney' for 'yes, you should have?'"? She gave him an annoyed look and stuck her tongue out at him. Sky smiled slightly in return, remembering how she'd tried to act all 'I don't care if I miss the dinner with my parents' deal, it was clear to him, if no one else that that was a lie.

Sydney slipped the tip of her fingernail under the tape on the side of the box and lifted the lid of the box to reveal a small box lain on top of gauzy soft-looking white tissue paper. She gasped as she opened the small box and saw what was inside of it, the most beautiful locket she had ever seen and she had seen plenty. "Oh my gosh, Sky, this is---this is---beautiful." She stated softly. When she looked up at him he was shrugging his shoulders and acting like it was no big thing, but to her it was HUGE. "There's something else in the tissue paper," he started to say. "It's more of a ga---" he was interrupted by the sound of her laughter as she held out the t-shirt he had picked out for her.

"Oh my gosh, this is perfect!" she laughed as she set it down on the vanity before launching herself into his arms to give him a hug. "Sydney," He gasped, "need some oxygen here." As much as he liked that she was giving him a hug he liked breathing much more. After a moment more she released him and averted her eyes, blushing. She hadn't meant to launch herself at him like that, she hadn't when she had seen the locket, but after she had seen the shirt she'd lost control.

"I'm glad you liked your gifts," He said gruffly, trying to conceal the pleasure she had given him just by liking the gifts he had given her. Sky looked down at Sydney and could see she was still blushing and not looking at him. "I should go." Before Sydney could say anything he turned and left the room. "Thank you, Sky." She whispered to the empty room.

"Hey guys!" Sydney said brightly as she entered the room where her four teammates were just sitting around and relaxing. Bridge, Z, and Jack were seated on one couch talking, while Sky was laying down on another, his legs dangling over the edge as he read a book. Bridge, Z, and Jack looked up as one at her cheery greeting and blinked in surprise and then burst into laughter. Sky looked up from what he was reading and just looked surprised. Two days before she had entered the room wearing a fancy dress, today she wore t-shirt and jeans with a locket, pretty diamond earrings and sandals to finish her ensemble.

"What is wrong with you guys?" she asked, looking slightly hurt. Z was the one who spoke up first. "That shirt isn't usually something you would wear, Syd," getting over her bout of laughter, "so it threw us for a loop." Bridge smiled and nodded his head, "It's a cool shirt though," He hastened to add. "Where did you get it from?" Jack asked. "Sky gave it to me, he also gave me the locket," she walked to the couch the three friends were sitting on and showed it to them and smiled at their reaction to that bit of news, "it's pretty isn't it?" she asked. The three other rangers turned stunned eyes to Sky who by this time had his head down and reading a book, or at least pretending to. It looked more like embarrassment to the others.

"So that's why you weren't around the other day," Z stated, "you were getting her a gift." Sky didn't wait for her to comment he just let his feet drop to the floor, intent on leaving the room; he wasn't in the mood for Z's brand of humor at the moment. "Yes, Sherlock, that is what I was doing the other day---give yourself a pat on the back." He muttered and left the room. "Ok-ay, so now we are officially back to square one with that guy." Z murmured, watching his retreat from the room.

Bridge took off his glove and with a slow wave of his hand he could see what Sky was feeling at that moment.

Embarrassment. Anger. Elation.

Bridge blinked. "Huh?"

"What is it, Bridge?" Z asked, looking at the Green Ranger with curiosity in her eyes. Jack was curious as well so he remained silent, waiting. Bridge shook his head and shrugged. "I've sensed the first two emotions a lot, especially lately---but the third is…" he smiled, "very uncommon." Z glared at him in annoyance and commanded, "Out with it Greenboy." Jack nodded his head, totally in agreement with Z, which was not that uncommon. "He's really happy." Bridge stated simply. As one, Jack and Z said, "Huh?!"

Sydney herself was still in a state of shock at Z's revelation of the truth of Sky's whereabouts that she totally missed the exchange. She mentally calculated the time to be about five hours---f…f…five hours, she cringed inwardly at the thought Sky, or anyone else for that matter, being on their feet for that many hours.

He was probably in a lot of pain after that trip, she thought sympathetically,remembering how bushed he looked after he came back from his shopping excursion. A smile came to her face and a giggle escaped her lips at the thought of Sky shopping at a mall. Sydney decided she would pay good money to see that.

"Care to share, Syd?" Jack asked, looking at her strangely. Bridge and Z were also looking at her with raised eyebrows. "Oh, uh, nothing." She chuckled, somewhat embarrassed. "Do you know where Sky went?" finally realizing, after looking at the now empty couch, that he had left the room. "You mean Mr. Sky 'I-Did-Something-Nice-So-Now-I-Am-Going-Back-Into-My-Shell' Tate, right?" Z asked in her usual sarcastic tone. Sydney glared and asked, "Do you have to pick on him even when he does something nice?" Z folded her arms across her chest and answered, "Well, yeah, especially when he ruins it by being himself again." Sydney got up and left the room, presumably to find Sky.

"That girl is confusing," Z muttered with a shake of her head, "one minute she's telling me it never does get easier living with him and the next she's defending him." Bridge, ever the peacemaker, decided to try to make Z understand the relationship the three of them had. "We've known him longer than you guys have, we know some of what drives him, admittedly not much, to do the things he does, so for us…it is easier to deal with him then it is for you. Sky's like the big brother, a bit intimidating, but underneath that he cares a lot and doesn't want to see us get hurt." Z smiled affectionately at Bridge, who was her first friend at SPD. "He's still a stick in the mud." Z said with a wink. "Well, yeah, but that's Sky." Bridge shrugged and grinned.


Sky turned his head at the sound of her voice, it was muffled by the closed door, but there was a hint of hesitancy in it, like she was afraid he'd snap at her. He winced, feeling guilty. "Come on in, Syd." He answered tiredly, rolling over onto his side as the door to his room slid open to allow her entrance. She walked in, somewhat nervous and he smiled to put her at ease. "It's okay. I'm not going to bite your head off. I'm just tired. Sorry for taking it out on you and the others." He apologized, watching as she came and sat Indian style on the floor in front of him. She looked down at the ground and started tugging at the loose threads in the carpet. "I didn't mean to make you feel embarrassed or anything, I just really liked the gifts you gave me," she apologized and then looked up at him with a smile, laughter in her eyes, "especially the 'Blond, Petite, and Cute---Fear Me' shirt."

He gave her a genuine smile and laughed, the smile and laugh reminded her of the time that she had provoked him to pour water over her head, that was the first time she had ever seen him smile, not smirk but smile. Sydney didn't join in, she just smiled, watching the way his smile and laughter transformed his looks. He calmed down after a few minutes and said softly as he grinned down at her from his place on the bed. "Happy Belated Birthday, Sydney."

Z was passing by the room and heard the whole conversation, including the apology and the ensuing laughter. She smiled and walked on past, thinking to herself. Maybe he isn't so bad after all.