Spoiler: PR:SPD episode "History" and Always a Ranger series
Disclaimer: Power Rangers belongs to Disney, which considering Disney's non-violence stance seems hypocritical, but who am I to judge?
Relationships: T/K, C/K
Summary: Bringing rangers out of retirement to fight on the side of bad guys never works out well…
A/N: Ryan - this is for you. Thanks for asking about this… I enjoyed doing it. As well, to make things fit, several main points in the TV show have been changed (see end of story for details).
Hi all. So, yes, I have not watched any of SPD, because, well a lot of reasons. But the "History" episode meant Dino Rangers, and that opened up the opportunity to give this the AAR twist. I hope you enjoy, and now, to the story. . .
Reefside High School
Final day of school
"Conner!" yelled Ethan James as he saw the former red ranger come through the doors closest to the front office, passing the students eagerly escaping the confines of the institution.
"Hey Ethan! When did you get in from MIT?" replied Conner McKnight, moving quickly to catch his much missed friend in a bear hug.
"Last night. I headed directly to my folks' place."
"I know what you mean…" Conner groaned, his face showing an exaggerated expression.
"What? You aren't staying with your folks…" asked Ethan, wondering what might have happened with him and the reason he shouldn't be in his old room.
"No… but they want me to come by and spend time and all. With me being off at school, I hear the whole, 'we don't see you anymore' riff, and so I'm guilted into having dinner once a week."
Smiling, Ethan realized that Conner wasn't back to bachelorhood, just having to pay penance for being off in school.
"I understand. So, where's your better half?"
Conner punched Ethan's arm hard, making the former blue ranger grin even as he rubbed the sore spot. Obviously still in love…
"She's on her way. I offered to drive her, but she said she wanted to pick up Kim on her own. I said it was fine for me to drive them, but I got the impression that she wanted to talk with Kim alone. No doubt about us," Conner mock complained, even as he smiled brightly at the idea of him and Kira as 'us'.
"God, you two…"
"Us two what?" asked Kira Ford, coming up behind Ethan, poking him in the ribs before moving to Conner's side.
"Glued together, just like always."
"Hey, give them a break. Besides, you didn't give Tommy and me the same grief," said Kimberly Hart-Oliver as she popped out of the front office and moved to be hugged happily by Ethan and Conner.
"God, it's great to see you Kim," commented Ethan with a wide grin as he hugged her.
"Same here. Tommy will be thrilled to see you too."
"So, Dr. O doesn't know we're coming to surprise him, right?" asked Conner, worried now the surprise might be already gone.
"No. As far as he knows it's the last day of school and Kim's coming to meet him to pack up his room. Kim?" Kira asked, looking to the former pink ranger and Dr. O's wife of nearly 2 years.
"I didn't say a thing. I can keep a secret from him if I have to," Kim remarked with a smile.
"Where's the last member of our surprise party?" Ethan asked, looking around rapidly.
From behind them, they heard the doors open and a young Hispanic man with a huge grin on his face walk through, headed straight for them.
"Trent!" called out the group, with Kim catching the young man she and Tommy considered nearly an adopted son in a hug.
"Sorry I'm late. I had to catch the red eye out of New York last night."
"Well, now that we're all here, let's help Dr. O pack," said Ethan, turning and heading for Dr. O's classroom.
The group was chattering and laughing until they got close, and then Kim had to take over. She shushed them and knocked on the door before opening it a crack to peer in. She found Tommy with a cardboard box on his desk in the corner, tossing papers in it and then in the trash in alternating movements.
"What? Are you sure you don't want to take it all?" Kim teased and her husband looked up from his task and smiled.
"Hey there you. I didn't realize it was that late," Tommy said as he laid his glasses on the desk to move to drag his wife into the room, kiss her some before going back to the task of finishing up another school year.
Seeing his intent, Kim knew the time to spring the surprise was now before he started something that would embarrass them both before their former team mates and friends. Opening the door further, she stepped in, followed by Trent, Ethan, Conner and Kira as they all yelled out in unison.
Tommy froze in his tracks. They…
"You set me up," he said to Kim with a mock growl before moving to hug the group of young adults moving forward to greet him.
"I was inspired to surprise you for once. Luckily you deal with surprises on your feet."
He laughed at that and continued with the round of hugs being thrown his way by his former students, friends and team mates.
"What are you all doing here?"
"Helping you pack and coming home for the summer," replied Ethan, moving to poke his nose in the cardboard box on Dr. O's desk.
"I would have thought you would have stayed in New York," Tommy asked Trent, knowing that Reefside still held bad memories for the former white ranger.
"I'm selling the house, so I wanted to see it one last time," he remarked with a touch of melancholy in his voice, prompting Kim to sling her arm around the now taller young man's waist in comfort.
"Well, let's get you outta here and maybe catch up over some pizza!" said Conner, hurrying over to Ethan as the two of them piled the stuff there and in the drawers into the box until it was bulging.
"Alright, let's go," relented Tommy as he moved to circle Kim's wait with his arm and headed towards the door, Conner with the box in his arms and Kira at his side, Trent and Ethan following behind.
As they stepped out into the empty corridor, Kim looked to Tommy with a smile, seeing past him to note the others around them. All was perfect in their world, Kim thought when her eyes were suddenly filled with a blinding white light. It enveloped them in moments… And when the white light dissipated, only the box of Dr. O's things remained, falling to the floor with a thud.
"Oh crap," said Kim as she looked around, realizing they were no longer in the school.
Instead they were in some kind of lab, and before them a pair of obviously monstrous beings stood before them. Which, having dealt with bad guys for as long as Kim and Tommy had been rangers was a sure sign that they were in trouble.
"You're going to help me destroy this planet by giving me your powers," said the being in the glass helmet.
"No way!" called out Conner indignantly.
"Let's get out of here!" yelled Tommy, his hand making a quick gesture towards the door.
Breaking for the door, the six dino thunder members were able to quickly escape. But as they got outside, they realized they were lost… and that they were being pursued. Racing to locate some space to maneuver, the team found themselves hit a dead end, and were forces to turn as one to face the black and white colored robotic like foes facing them.
"Any thoughts on what these things are?" asked Conner, the team's backs against a wall.
"They're not tyranodrones, but they're up there in the creepy department" commented Kira, noting the blocky things advancing on them.
"And they sure aren't putties," remarked Kim, Tommy right beside her.
"Any ideas on how to get out of this?" Conner questioned, his hands coming up to battle stance.
"I'm still trying to figure out how we got into it," replied Ethan.
"Alright everyone," called out Tommy as he fell into battle stance, "we're back in business!"
And then the bad guys were on them.
"This is strange…"
"A Trubian energy reading?"
"No. A ranger energy reading. An intense surge in the morphing grid is spiking in the downtown sector," said Kat, watching the six colored signatures blinking on her map. The colors were wrong…
"But I didn't deploy the rangers. I thought they were here in the base?" asked Commander Doggie Cruger.
Before Kat could answer, the rangers in question strode through the door.
"What's new in the SPD zoo Commander," asked Jack, his smirk fading as he saw the looks on Cruger and Kat's faces.
"Narrow in on the energy reading," Cruger told Kat.
"I'm on it."
"What's going on Kat?" asked Sydney.
"What energy reading Sir?" questioned Sky.
"I'm detecting an alternate ranger energy reading downtown," explained Kat.
"But, we're not downtown," said Bridge confused. "I mean, I'm not downtown. I don't think I am."
"Don't look at me. I'm all here," said Z, referring to her other 'selves'.
"Then it must be A-Squad?" asked Sky hopefully.
"They made it back!" Sydney said excitedly as the others looked at one another with astonished, cheerful expressions.
"Too many colors… wrong ones too," said Kat, pointing at the screen.
"Well, whomever it is, you should go and check it out," said Cruger, sending the team running for the door.
As the dino team faced the fishbowl guy and his minions again, they were prepared for another round of battle, and probably having to morph before getting their butts kicked. Instead, they watched as a jeep with sirens and lights screeched to a halt near them, making their opponents turn. Five youths dressed in grey and colored jumpsuits emerged quickly from the jeep, heading their way, dodging the now attacking bad guy minions.
The dino team watched in stunned awe as the newcomers took on their adversaries.
Quickly the minions had been dealt with and the five youths now squared off with the main bad guy…
"Back off Broodwing," yelled Jack, pointing at the massive monster.
"Fly back to where you came from," snarked Z.
"SPD, always getting in my way! I'm not through with any of you," Broodwing exclaimed as he jumped into the air, his wings letting hi fly off and escape.
"You guys okay," asked Z as they raced to the six people left in Broodwing's wake.
"A little confused, but we're okay," replied Conner with surprise.
"Broodwing's bad news. Attacking innocent civilians, that's just low" said Sky dismissingly.
"You've fought this freak before?" asked Conner, moving forward towards the colored team before him as Tommy and Kim looked at one another in surprise… could they be…
"Oh yeah, all in a day's work," answered Jack, reaching for his badge. "We're power rangers, space patrol delta."
"Wait a minute…" started Kira, her mind starting to get lost. "You can't be the power rangers."
"Why not?" asked Z, curious but confused as the rest of the SPD team stared at them quizzically, not even recognizing the people before them let alone comprehending the colors they were wearing.
"Cause we are," announced as the dino thunder team raised their wrists in near unison, showing off their gauntlets, dino gems glittering from them.
"Oh…" replied Z, her mouth fighting not to drop open.
The dino team had been escorted through the corridors, most of them fighting not to get lost as their heads whipped around, looking at the technology, the people staring at them like they were aliens or something. That was until they walked into what seemed to be the command center of the place. They'd been told that they were now in the future and that they were being lead through the academy that trained power rangers, and that Earth was under attack by an army of aliens and giant robots.
Kim and Tommy had signed at that last part, knowing that even in the future the lives of rangers never seemed to get any easier.
Finally the group passed the entrance to the hub of the complex and Ethan looked around admiringly.
"Okay, I'm not complaining, but our command center was a cave," he commented.
"Hey guys, that's our commander, Anubis Cruger, and our lovely technical expert Dr. Kat Manx," said Jack as the team was brought up short by the blue skinned being before them and cat eyed woman at his side.
"Welcome to our base rangers," said Commander Cruger, making the whole dino team draw up short.
"Broodwing was after them," said Sky, cutting to the chase.
"I can see why," said Kat, bringing up images of the team in battle on the main screen. "The archives show the dino thunder team have faced off against some of the most treacherous and dangerous villains in all history."
"Ah, memories," wisecracked Conner.
"But that was yeas ago. What I don't get is how you got here," Jack said, looking at the team before them.
"We're not sure how we got here," explained Tommy, hoping the group before them would.
"I'm sure Broodwing went to a lot of expense to bring you here. He won't give up on you so easily," explained Cruger.
"It was probably a spell," announced Kat, her eyes focusing on the six former rangers before them. "I would assume that Broodwing wanted something from you, more than likely your ranger powers, so he brought you here to take them from you."
"Well he isn't getting them," Kim said harshly.
"No, he isn't. And to make sure of that, we need you to stay here while we locate a way to get you back to your own time where you will be safe from Broodwing and Emperor Gruumm," said Cruger.
"Besides, you're not rangers anymore," said Sky.
"We're retired, not dead," Trent said defensively.
"Besides, we don't want you guys to get into anymore trouble," replied Jack. "We have enough problems to deal with."
Before anyone could say anything, an alarm sounded, bathing the room in red light and the SPD team hurried to look at the screen, seeing Gruumm's forces massing.
"The quarry is under attack," announced Kat.
"My hunch is that Broodwing is trying to draw you out," Cruger stated.
"Look, just because we're not rangers anymore doesn't mean we can't help… we still have our powers," Conner instsited.
"You guys just need to chill until we get back," said Jack, his eyes brooking no dissention to his order, but he'd forgotten though whom he was dealing with.
"Are you guys mental?" cried Kim, moving slightly forward towards where the SDP team stood, ready to leave.
"You were brought here so Broodwing could steal your gems. If you go out there, that's what will happen," Cruger insisted.
"Excuse me, but, uh, oldest, greatest ranger here," commented Conner, pointing to Tommy. "We can handle ourselves."
"We're very well aware of Dr. Oliver's ranger past. We have an entire course on the early history of the rangers on Earth, which includes a chapter on Thomas James Oliver, not to mention the dino thunder team. But the truth is that you are not experienced with Gruumm. We are," explained Sky.
"That sounds all great and all, but it's our lives," Ethan remarked with some annoyance.
"Yes, but we don't want anything to happen to you. You have to go back to your own time, and we can't risk Gruumm getting you. You have to trust we can handle this and get you back," stated Z said, anxious to get out there.
"So we just sit here and hope you can break the spell or something and send us home?" Tommy asked, not liking the idea of his, Kim and the other's lives in the hands of these… kids.
"It is the safest thing for you," Cruger said, his tone calming.
The dino thunder team looked to Tommy. Whatever he decided would be the way things would go. He in turn looked into Kim's eyes, searching for her guidance and support. He smiled tightly and nodded slightly.
"Alright," Tommy said reluctantly, his hand landing on Kim's shoulder before turning to regard the new team of rangers before them. "We'll wait for you to get back with our ticket home."
"Let me guess, that's Gruumm," said Ethan from their vantage point at the monitor.
"This is serious," said Kat, her eyes turning back to the dino thunder team. Maybe…
"Okay, that's it. Come on Dr. O, we gotta go," Conner urged, knowing that even with the extra power the dog/lizard thing that seemed to be the head of the ranger academy was offering the SPD team that the rangers were way outgunned.
"You realize that we might be getting ourselves in over our heads, right?" Kira reminded him with a forceful look that reminded Kim and Tommy of them. "They're the ones who know this Gruumm guy."
"Yes, but they are in trouble," Trent argued on Conner's behalf, pointing to the scene before them on the monitor showing the ongoing battle and the space patrol rangers nearly surrounded.
"Dr. O?" Ethan asked, knowing that no matter what Conner's opinion, it was Dr. O and Kim that would make the final decision.
Tommy stared at the ongoing battle before them, seeing the carnage and the desperation by the space team to hold their ground. They needed help, and they needed it now. If it was his team out there, like when the other rangers were there for the attack on Mesogog's fortress to get Kim back… no, they had to help.
Tight smiles and nods abounded. Then the dino rangers turned and hurried past a group of cadets huddled near the door, watching all of this going on as they raced to aid their future counterparts, and hopefully secure their way home.
"So, time to go back," Trent said, his mouth frowning slightly.
"It is. You have lives to get back to in your timeline," Cruger said simply, watching the rangers before him admiringly.
"I think you guys need us here a little longer to deal with Gruumm. He's going to be madder than ever," Ethan said, feeling conflicted about going when they could stay a while and help.
"Yeah, and what about Broodwing? He's still around, flapping about," Kira added.
"It's obvious we should stay," Conner added, looking to Kira as she watched him. "I mean, you'll put us right back, no time in our time will be missed, right? Besides, we work great together."
"Nice try, but I don't date older guys," said Syd, mistaking Conner's comment for something it wasn't.
"Not a problem. He's not available," Kira said possessively, grabbing Conner's hand in her's.
"Still, it looks like you're under manned around here," Trent insisted tersely.
"We appreciate your offer to stay rangers, but that's not possible," Cruger reminded them. "If something happened to any of you, the timeline would be ruined."
"How much could our lives affect all this?" asked Kira, waving her hand at the command center's technology, obviously confused.
"How…" started Syd before laughing. "I grew up with your music Kira. You're a famous recording star. If that doesn't happen…"
"And Conner, you have an important role to play in the 2008 Olympics in Bejing. If you aren't there the US loses,"
"And Ethan, you have to go back. You developed some software that we still use here at SPD," added Sky before Bridge jumped in.
"And I loved the 'Danger Ranger' series that you wrote and illustrated Trent. It was a big thing to be a 'Danger Ranger' fan when I was a kid."
There was along pause as the members of the Dino Thunder team considered the Space Patrol's words. Then the four younger rangers looked to Tommy and Kim. The rangers of the future hadn't mentioned their contributions… Cruger saw it and knew he had to alleviate their concerns. Yet as vaguely as possible.
"You all have a role in the past that will affect the future we live in now. Your lives as rangers have made a difference. But you all go on to lead exciting and significant lives after you hang up your helmets… in some cases for the second time. So you need to go back."
Grasping Tommy's hand with hers, Kim caught her husband's eyes and they shared a look that spoke volumes. This wasn't their fight anymore. It was time to let others fight. They had other things they wanted.
"They're right," Tommy said simply, looking to his team. "They're capable, and they can take care of things here. We did our duty… it's time for us to live our lives for ourselves."
"Alright then… I guess, send us home," Conner announced, taking Kira's hand in his as they waited.
"Your courage and dedication will live on in ranger legend. Thank you all," said Cruger as Kat activated the return spell.
"Goodbye dino rangers. Your memories of us will be erased," said Kat, powering up the machine to run the spell to send them back. "But we won't forget you."
Then the bright light that had sent them there in the first place hit them, sending them back.
At first glance, the dark haired young woman looked like any cadet. It wasn't until you focused on her that anyone with any knowledge of her heritage could tell who she was. The piercing eyes, the proud carriage and the way she seemed to fit in here, in the center of the space patrol's command center…
Still, she was not where she was supposed to be, and she knew someone was going to catch on sooner or later. But she needed to be here.
As she stood behind the sensor panel, she watched the Dino Thunder rangers speaking with Commander Cruger and she smiled a watery, happy smile. Then the room went bright white as they were sent back to their own time. Just as she was recovering from the flash, she heard her name being barked out, and she froze and looked up from her semi-hidden spot near the other techs at the back of the command center.
"Are you glad you got a chance to see them before we sent them back Elizabeth?" asked Doggie Cruger, coming up to the young woman who had just started at the academy and whom he knew without a doubt was going to be taking the red mantle of her father in a few short years.
"It's strange. I mean, it's not like I don't remember them like that, but… well seeing them, all of them in action, and young again… wow."
"Well, the dino thunder rangers were special, and you know that your parents were always something more than that. They were the best that a ranger could be," he replied and nodded his head. "You better get to class."
She gave a guilty grin and rushed off, knowing she had a legacy to uphold.
Okay, hope you liked. Maybe we'll be back with "Wormhole", but I'll have to wait and see. As to what was changed: 1. No one has a 1 year reunion. How stupid is that? 2. I had to get everyone in place to make this work, so I fudged the dates and times a bit – while the episode is 2005, this is 2006. 3. The rangers still have their powers, but are obviously retired again since the Solar Rangers arrived the month before. 4. The whole thing about what their futures were going to be, I left some of it in tact, but changed others. 5. I didn't rewrite the battle scenes, because, well… I wanted to focus on the other stuff. Lastly, the teaser at the end… I just had to.