Hey guys! It's good to be back after a couple of weeks of chaos. Anyway, here it is the next chapter but I can't take credit for all of it because I did get one tiny idea from C2(thanks girl!) and it was just the perfect ending I needed for this chapter. As always I loved the reviews and don't be afraid to leave more! Enjoy.
"Let it be known to all who cross my path that I am Lord Xarr, master of the Sonar Quadrin and brother of Lord Zedd!" announced the evil tyrant.
Jason watched carefully as Lord Xarr arrogantly strutted around the dimly lit chamber after revealing his identity. The sight of him was quite surreal and although things just kept going from bad to worse, Jason continued to try his best to stay positive. He was however, feeling very weak from lack of food and water and he decided that he'd rather die fighting Lord Xarr over dying of hunger.
"Well then, kicking your ass shouldn't be too hard," said Jason snidely, not caring if he pissed off the monster who could very well end up being his toughest challenge yet.
Lord Xarr turned around slowly, enraged by the former red ranger's disrespectful mouth. He was going to have to teach him a lesson, one that he most certainly would not forget for the duration of his stay. Walking towards Jason, Lord Xarr grasped his staff tightly and without a word he hurled it towards Jason, sending a lightning bolt across the room. Jason had time to dodge the blow but behind him stood Kat and Aisha, neither of which would have been able to avoid the bolt. So, Jason took the blow for his team and when the worst of it was over he lay flat on the floor, paralyzed and unable to move a single bone in his body, just his eyeballs from side to side.
His friends' immediate reaction was to rush to his aid but the slops would not allow for it and although the tears began to flow down the former pink ranger's cheeks, the villains had absolutely no compassion.
After a laughing spell, Lord Xarr decided to make his intentions known to his prisoners, sure that he could demand their respect. "Anyone else in the mood for a nap?" he questioned, kicking Jason hard in the side, but Jason barely felt it because his body had gone numb and he was still unable to speak. The rangers then struggled harder against the slops that had by now constricted everyone's arms behind their bodies. "Ha, ha, ha…Now you will listen to me pathetic humans!" The rangers wanted so badly to fight back, if not physically then with words, but they knew that the next person who spoke would surely end up like their fallen leader and then where would they be with two of them down?
"As I was saying," continued Lord Xarr, "I am the brother of the most feared and the most respected villain that ever attempted to conquer this galaxy and although he was defeated, I have every intention of finishing the job. "You annoying little roaches were the only thing standing between my brother and universal domination, and had it not been for you he would have defeated this galaxy and every other galaxy in this dimension by now. But no, you and your eternally irritating leader Zordon had to go and ruin everything! And now because of you, my brother is in the Sixtate galaxy, playing house with his wife Rita! The sight of them just makes me sick! He used to be so evil and oh how I adored him when I was a boy. I used to dream for hours of the day that I would be of age to rule along beside him and now that that time has come he is no longer evil. No thanks to you!" Lord Xarr hurled another lightning bolt in the rangers' direction but purposely missed them because he had only intended to scare them and had succeeded at doing so.
Once he composed himself, Lord Xarr continued, "Now, you are all probably wondering what I have in store for you and although I can't give you all of the details, just know that none of you are getting out of this chamber alive." His words pierced the ranger's like knives and even Jason managed to cringe at the revelation. "You may have noticed that the universally respected and revered, Dr. Oliver has not yet graced us with his presence, and neither has his quirky little ex, but believe you me, I have my best man on it. You better hope that they are not captured anytime soon because the moment they are, it's lights out for all of you. It's just so much more fun to destroy you all together, just like all of the fireworks on the fourth of July. The more in the sky at one time, the sweeter the show. Ha, ha, ha…You'll be sorry you ever escaped the wrath of Lord Zedd because I am even more vicious!"
With that, Lord Xarr waved his hand, signaling to his drones and then turned and walked out the door. The slops immediately released the rangers and shoved them to the ground, allowing the slops to make their exit without having to worry about anyone escaping. But, before they left, they wheeled in a cart containing jugs of water and a large pot of an unidentifiable substance that the ranger's assumed was edible grub. Rocky was the first to reach the cart and without hesitation he began to dig into the pot, using nothing but his right hand as a spoon.
"Rocky, that's disgusting!" said Aisha, pushing him to the side and grabbing a jug of water.
"What?" said Rocky with a full mouth, "Do you see any spoons?"
"Right here," said Zack in annoyance, he flashed the supply of spoons in Rocky's face.
"Oh, sorry," apologized Rocky, licking his fingers clean while reaching for a spoon with his left hand.
Trini, Katherine and Adam tended to Jason, hoping that a drink of water would revive him. But it appeared that only time would fade the paralysis, he had already begun to have feeling in his fingers. With his eyes, Jason motioned for his caretakers to get something to eat for themselves and they each grabbed a spoon.
"This is absolutely disgusting," whined Kat as she starred at her spoonful of gruel.
"You can say that again," agreed Aisha, who also frowned at the thick, brown food substitute.
"Eww, what is it?" asked Adam, being the last to take a heaping helping.
"It certainly isn't oatmeal," answered Trini.
"But I'm pretending it is," added Zack, "that's the only way I can choke this stuff down."
"I've never been so hungry in my life," replied Rocky, who had at this point eaten most of the porridge.
"Hey Billy, aren't you going to come and eat anything?" asked Katherine, passing around another jug of water. She noticed Billy had made no motion to join the others for food and water. Instead, he sat on a rock beside Jason, fidgeting with some sort of unidentifiable object.
"Just a second," said Billy, engrossed in whatever it was that he was doing. The others let him be for several moments but the food supply was rapidly depleting.
"Hey Billy," called Zack, "if you don't get over here soon, Rocky's going to eat your helping of mud."
"Hang on," replied Billy, making one last adjustment to the mechanism. "There," he declared, appearing quite proud and satisfied with himself as he made his way to the others. Taking a seat he grabbed for a spoon and the pot simultaneously.
"Hey," said Rocky as Billy took the pot out of his hands. Everyone laughed at Rocky's misfortune, he deserved it.
"So, what were you doing back there?" asked Aisha, taking another swig of water.
"Well guys, let's just say that not all hope is lost," he replied, with a full mouth. Everyone starred at him puzzled. Billy reached for the mechanism inside his pocket, passing it to Aisha he explained its importance. "I used it to send out a distress signal that hopefully Tommy will receive."
"I don't understand," replied Kat.
"Well, Tommy consulted me a few times while he and his friend Haley were building his command center in his basement for the Dino Rangers to utilize. I gave them some ideas and suggestions for maximizing their equipment's capabilities. And one thing we discussed was the idea of tying their computer system in with my own at my lab, you know, just in case they needed some assistance if things got a little hectic. Luckily, we never had to use the communication channel but now I'm glad that we took the precaution. Anyway, I sent him a chip, which he installed into his main hard drive that matches the chip inside of this device right here." He gestured for Zack to hand the device back to him, and then pointed out the chip for his friends to see.
"And you just happened to have it with you?" questioned Rocky, not believing their luck.
"Well no not really," replied Billy, "since I was going on vacation to visit Trini, I knew that if I took my laptop with me then I would spend the whole week in cyberspace, rather than enjoying the time off. But, my days as a ranger taught me that you should always be prepared so I brought with me a modified version of my system at home, this device, just by chance there was an emergency. If I don't have my laptop, then I always have this guy," he flashed the device at everyone again. "And now Tommy has our coordinance and can hopefully devise a way to rescue us."
"And you really think Tommy's going to get the signal?" asked Adam, not wanting to fill his own head with false hope.
"As long as Tommy is either logged on to his computer system or just within earshot of his command center then he will receive the distress signal. I mean, I'm sure by now Kimberly has tracked him down and if he knows we're missing then most likely he is searching for us."
"Of course, that's assuming Kimberly has found Tommy," interrupted Katherine. She had no intention of admitting it but she wasn't completely convinced that Kimberly could handle things on her own. It had just been too long since any of them had swung into action.
The room grew quiet again as the rangers contemplated the possibility that Kimberly may have more on her plate than she could chew. But the silence was broken, "Kim will come through for us, I know she will," interrupted Jason. His speech was somewhat slurred but he had finally regained the ability to talk. The rest of the rangers raced to his side, giving him the remainder of the food and water. All the while hoping to God that Jason was right and Kimberly had in fact found their leader.
"Come again," said Kimberly with the most puzzled expression on her face.
"It's a distress signal from Billy," repeated Tommy as he clicked away at the keyboard, finally finding a reason to smile, "I don't believe it, he must have taken the computer chip with him." Tommy was talking more to himself than he was to Kimberly.
"Explain please," replied Kimberly, not wanting to be the odd man out.
Tommy looked at her with just a hint of a sparkle in his eye, "When Haley and I built this place we asked Billy for his input and he suggested that we tie our computer systems together, you know just in case. So, he sent me a computer chip, a match to several of his own which are installed in his desktop and laptop, and I guess he must have constructed some sort of portable device and taken it with him to Trini's."
"And now he has it with him and the other guys, wherever they may be," finished Kimberly with excitement in her voice.
"You got it," assured Tommy, flashing Kimberly a grin that was undoubtedly her favorite feature of his. "Now, we have their coordinance, and if you'll just give me a second, I'll translate it." Tommy began typing away on the keyboard again as Kimberly sat impatiently watching his fingers move quickly over the buttons.
"Anything yet?" she asked anxiously, after several minutes, she was never big on waiting.
"Hang on," replied Tommy, taking notes on a small notepad while typing with the other hand. "Okay, yes, got it!"
"Whoo!" cheered Kimberly beside him; it never hurt to be perky.
"Alright, Kim, according to my calculations the guys are located in this galaxy."
"Well that's good news, I suppose," replied Kimberly not sure if it really was or not.
"But they are on another planet, one that I have never heard of before. In fact it would appear that the planet is actually brand new."
"You mean whoever captured the guys created their very own planet to keep them hostage on."
"I guess," answered Tommy, "or maybe it's like some sort of alien military base or something."
"But you know exactly where the planet is located right?" began Kimberly, her excitement suddenly depleting.
"Yup, I know exactly where it is. The only problem is we have absolutely no way of getting there," finished Tommy, dropping his head in defeat.
"And even if we could get there, how could we begin an attempt to save the guys without any powers?" added Kimberly. Tommy agreed with her, nodding his head slightly. The two sat in silence for several moments as they pondered a possible solution. "Come on Tommy, there's got to be something we can do. I mean look at all of this fancy equipment, one of these buttons has to be of use to us." Kimberly began scanning the control panel for answers.
"I'm sorry Kim, but it's just not that easy," said Tommy, throwing up his arms with a sigh. "I mean we literally gave up the dino gems and without them we're running on nothing but batteries and electricity. Hell, we couldn't even teleport when we did have powers."
"So, maybe the solution is not exactly obvious," began Kimberly, not letting her spirits fall. "I can't even count the number of times that we thought all hope was lost back in the day, but things always had a way of working themselves out, and this time is no different." Kimberly looked over at Tommy, waiting for him to agree with her but he never did. "Look, Tommy, you found the dino gems by your self, right? And you built this place, and you found a team, and eventually you kicked the bad guy's ass, right? And you did it all by your self. Sure you had some help from Haley and the kids, but you were the leader, and I bet you were the best damn leader that any team of rangers has ever seen since Zordon." Tommy nodded, a smile creeping across his face. "Well, if you did it once then there is no reason why you can't do it again." Kimberly congratulated herself silently for posing a rational case that had hopefully motivated Tommy.
"You are absolutely right Kim, I can do this," replied Tommy, finally coming around.
"Hey, do you think that maybe we could get some help from another team?" asked Kimberly with optimism.
"I suppose we could," began Tommy, as he pondered the possibility. "But, the second another power source enters this galaxy I can guarantee the bad guys will be tipped off and one of two things could happen." Kimberly starred at him eagerly. "One, he'll finish off the others immediately because he won't want to risk losing them. Or two, one will happen and in addition to one we might just end up launching galaxy war number two."
"Oh, good point," replied Kimberly. "But how do we even know if this guy's legit? I mean sure we've seen what like, four of his henchmen. Big deal. For all we know he's just some monster with a score to settle or something, he probably doesn't even have an army or an empire."
"That may be so Kim, but it may also be that he is in fact a powerful leader in another galaxy like that slimeball said," Tommy stood up from his chair and began pacing back in forth in front of the control panel. "We just can't risk it."
"I guess that's true," said Kimberly with disappointment in her voice. "Well what about the dino rangers? I'm sure they wouldn't say no to a chance to help out some veteran rangers, even without their powers."
Tommy shook his head immediately, "No good," he declared, "they're on a cross country road trip, too much time would be wasted waiting for them the get back. Plus, without powers it could end up being even more dangerous with more people. It's a lot easier to sneak around with two opposed to six."
Kimberly thought for a moment, "So then it really is just you and me, huh?" she asked biting her lower lip.
"Yup," replied Tommy, stretching his arms and taking a much deserved yawn. "Just you and me," Tommy paused for a moment, taking in his very own words. Just Kim and he, it sounded nice.
"Well then, let's get going," interrupted Kimberly, "how did you happen to find the dino gems?" she began prodding him for answers that she hoped would lead to the big answer.
"Um, I was on a very important mission with Anton Mercer on a secluded island where we began development of the dinosaur army. And then of course once I found the gems I was able to track down other useful eggs, like zords and such," Tommy was getting ahead of himself and making no sense to Kimberly.
"Okay then, so you were able to track down power sources right? Kind of like how Zordon tracked down the Zeo crystals?" Kimberly was on to something.
"Move," said Tommy, ordering Kimberly out of the way, he had just been graced with a wonderful idea. He immediately began typing, pushing buttons, and turning knobs on the counsel.
Kimberly was more than happy to get out of Tommy's way if it meant that there was a possibility that they could find powers. About ten minutes into Tommy's investigation he asked Kimberly to run a test on the slime from the monster they had just barely escaped earlier that day. She of course had no clue what she was doing but lucky for her Haley had constructed a device precisely for that and it was as simple to operate as a microwave.
"Done!" declared Kimberly just as the machine dinged, indicated it was finished with its cycle.
"Great, so am I," added Tommy, joining Kimberly at the table in the middle of the room, where the device sat. He pulled out the readings from the printer at the far side of the room and then returned to Kimberly's side, saying nothing until he had scanned every inch of the print out. Kimberly was going nuts waiting for him to finish and suddenly she wished that she had taken Billy up on his offer all those years ago to teach her nerd code. At least that's what she had called it.
"Okay, I have some good news and some bad news," said Tommy, finally putting down the computer print out.
Kimberly clenched her eyes shut deciding which she wanted to hear first and then realized that she couldn't take any more bad news today, at least not without a little hope. "Good news first please," she decided.
"The good news is that I have tracked down a power source, which conveniently enough is on the same planet as the guys and our new found friends. The source is somewhat unstable because it does reside and was originated on a planet, which was created and is supported by an evil energy force."
"Translation please," said Kimberly, waving her hands in front of her, pressuring Tommy for the facts.
"All we need is a host that was created by the light of good and with the negative power source we can recharge our powers. Even though the power source is evil, the actual power can still be channeled through the good energy and therefore be converted." Tommy gazed at Kimberly excitedly, and she returned the gesture.
"And when you say host, does that mean power coin?" the thought of using her power coin again excited her already.
"You know it Kim," confirmed Tommy, reaching for Kimberly without a second thought and gathering her into his arms. Kimberly held on tight as Tommy lifted her off the ground and spun her in two complete circles before releasing her again.
"Wow!" began Kimberly, "This is good news and you know what's even better news?"
"What?" asked Tommy over his shoulder as he opened what appeared to be a secret compartment in the wall and pulled out a silver box crafted of steel.
"Since I am in fact moving back to Angel Grove I have everything I own in the rental car outside…"
Tommy turned around with delight, "You brought you're power coin?"
"Yes!" exclaimed Kimberly; not quite believing how well things were falling into place.
"And I've got mine too," began Tommy as he opened the steel box and removed a small golden disk from its contents. It was so familiar and a very good familiar. He never thought that he would have use for it ever again, since the powers it contained were most definitely destroyed by Rito Revolto. He and the others had merely held on to their coins as momentos, proof that it had all actually happened.
"This is so awesome Tommy," said Kimberly, watching the coin shuffle through his fingers. "But now we have to figure out how to get to the other planet and how to get my coin out of the car with those goons outside. Do you think they're still there?"
"Oh I would almost guarantee it Kim, and I can only hope for it."
"What do you mean?" questioned Kimberly. She couldn't figure out why Tommy would ever want to encounter those disgusting slime balls again.
"The results from the test on the slime indicates that that creature, whatever he is, cannot hold his form when he is not in a sustainable state. Which means that teleporting would certainly take its toll on him. That's why I have reason to believe that they are not teleporting but are instead using visiportals."
"What's that?" asked Kimberly.
"Remember when you got stuck in that worm hole and got transported back to 1880?" explained Tommy.
"How could I ever forget it?" Kimberly had made some wonderful friends on that journey and she had also been in jeopardy of never seeing her friends or Tommy ever again. Although, the White Stranger would have made a pretty good substitute.
"The wormhole was a tear in the fabric of time, just like a visiportal is a pathway from one location to another. Mesogog and his crew used them all the time and the thing about them is that they don't close immediately because the hole can't calculate how many beings have passed through it. Instead, it has a short time span in which it remains open."
"So then, all we have to do is fallow them in?" finished Kimberly.
"Right," said Tommy in confirmation.
"This is the best news I've heard all day," exclaimed Kimberly, as she began to devise a plan. "So, how about this, we use your equipment to monitor the ugly guys outside and eventually they'll get bored with us and leave."
"I don't know about that Kim," replied Tommy with a sigh, "something tells me these guys are on a mission and they're not going to leave until they've completed it. I hate to say it but at this point it seems that our only option is for one of us to offer our self up as a sacrifice." Tommy stared at Kimberly sadly, he didn't want to break the bad news to her but she had already figured it out.
"Me?" she glared at him as if protesting the injustice.
"I'm sorry Kim, no offense but which one of us do you think has a better chance of finding the power source and then rescuing the guys? Tommy looked down at the floor, afraid he'd already hurt her feelings.
"You, I guess," concluded Kimberly, with deep disappointment in her voice, "but you have to swear to me that you will come through for us. I don't care what it takes, I'm not going to spend my last days in existence covered in green, smelly goop." She waved her finger in his face to let him know that she meant business.
"I swear," began Tommy, "don't worry, we both know I can do this and besides, at least you'll be with the others and you can let them know that help is on the way."
"Sometimes I really hate your ego," replied Kimberly smugly, she hadn't intended to say it out loud but there was no way that she could hold back. "But, if it means that we can get everyone back safe and sound then…" Kimberly trailed off and Tommy watched as her eyes grew to about three times their normal size.
"What is it Kim?" he asked, turning around to see what had her so distraught. Kimberly pointed towards the staircase, unable to say a word. By the time Tommy turned around the travelling green pool of slime which Kimberly had seen seep underneath the door had molded itself into a full size Velmore, who immediately opened the door, letting in his army of three slops.
"Well, so much for devising a plan," said Kimberly, finally finding her voice and taking a fighting stance.
"This is it Kim, you know what to do!" yelled Tommy, charging at the team of slops.