AN: Well, here's the chapter I promised. This one is about Kim leaving. Sorry it took a bit but I was having trouble finishing it. Anyway, hope you guys enjoy it. Thanks as always to my beta Alana. She allows you guy to have an awesome and error free chapter. There's a question for you guys at the end of the chapter.
Chapter 17: Final Farewell
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ Friday 6:00 am ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Kimberly was wide awake when her alarm went off. Today's the day... Today, she would say good bye to the rangers. Today she would say good bye to her friends. Today she would say good bye to Tommy. I don't know if I can do this. Kim stared at the ceiling, hoping beyond hope that it would somehow provide a solution to this dilemma. Aisha was still sound asleep, so Kim decided to stay in bed for a little while longer. Calm down Kim. You're fine. Zordon needs you. Besides, he said it himself yesterday, he believes in you. After a few more minutes, Kim got out of bed and headed to the bathroom. As she was brushing her teeth, she heard Aisha stumble out of bed and make her way toward the bathroom.
"Morning Kim." Aisha croaked out, reaching for her toothbrush and toothpaste.
"Morning Sha." Both continued with their morning routines. Every once in a while, Aisha would stop what she was doing and glance at Kim sadly. Noticing these glances, Kim finally stopped what she was doing and asked Aisha what was wrong.
"What's up Aisha? You keep looking at me like I'm dying."
"It's just that, this is the last time we're going to be doing this", she motioned with her hands at her surroundings, "I've grown so used to you being here every morning. It's going to be weird once you're gone." Kim came up to her and embraced her.
"Aisha. I figured you'd be happy getting your room back." Both laughed at the joke, easing the sadness they both felt. "Don't be sad. You know you can write me letters and call me anytime. I've asked Zordon to help out with that. If any of you want to call me or write letters, just let him know and they'll get to me a lot faster than the postal service."
"You know I will. You'll probably get tired of all the letters you're gonna get from me."
"Never. Besides, I wouldn't have it any other way." After another squeeze, the girls let go and finished getting ready for school.
The entire day went by incredibly fast. People would get sad and teary-eyed when saying good bye to Kim. She truly was a popular person at Angel Grove High. A lot of friends stopped her through out the day to wish her luck and to keep in touch. By the end of the school day she had a few cards and pictures to commemorate her time at in Angel Grove. After school, the rangers plus Kat headed over to Ernie's.
"So Kim, are you all packed?" Billy asked.
"Um, yeah. I think so. I just need to grab my stuff from Aisha's house and I'm all set."
"Cool. So how about we pick your stuff up from Sha's house and then head over to the Command Center? But first – lunch!" Rocky said, leading the group into Ernie's.
Ernie greeted the group warmly and ushered them to their usual table and told them to relax.
"This meal is on the house. Think of it as a mini going away party for Kim from me."
"Awww. Thanks Ernie!" Kim smiled and hugged him. Ernie hugged her back and headed into the kitchen. He came out a few minutes later with everyone's favorite sandwiches and drinks. "Enjoy!"
"Thanks Ernie!" Adam said before they all began to eat. To pass the time, they all talked about fond memories of the past. After a few minutes, Kat excused herself and said that she had to go run a quick errand for her mother before heading home. After hugging Kim good bye and telling the others that she'd see them later, Kat left. Kim then began telling the others a story of sleep over the originals had once at Jason's house.
"So my parents dropped me off at the front door and I rang the door bell, waiting for Jason's mom to let me in. Once she did, she said that others were all there and waiting for me up in Jason's room. When I got there, I had expected the boys to be playing some sort of game while Trini waited patiently for my arrival. I never in my wildest dreams expected to see what I saw. I opened the door to see Trini and Billy rolling on the floor, laughing hysterically while Zack and Jason were trying desperately to come apart." The others laughed at what Kim was saying, trying to imagine how it was this situation came to be. Billy tried to calm his laughter in order to finish the story.
"You see, when I was younger, I was very small. It was very difficult for me to find appropriately-sized clothing. So, my father decided to adjust one of my belts by adding a very powerful magnet buckle in order for my pants to stay on no matter what, until I turned the magnet off. I had already changed into my pjs when Zack asked if he could try on the belt. I said he could, but before I could warn him about the magnet's shield, he turned on the magnet. Unfortunately for Jason, he was too close at that precise moment and he was still wearing his belt, so you can imagine how they became stuck. Neither really understood what was happening, so they decided to pull away from each other with little success. Kim came in shortly after one of these attempts and all three of us broke into fits of laughter. Once we minimized the laughing to sporadic giggles, I turned the magnet off, releasing the hold and allowing them to separate." Billy smiled fondly at that memory, Kim mirroring his expression.
"Needless to say, that was the fastest I'd ever seen Jason change clothes. Zack learned after that to ask before pushing buttons." Kim spoke. The others laughed at this story, picturing this whole situation happening.
"Oh man. Billy, do you still have that belt?" Rocky asked.
"Yes, as a matter of fact, I do. Somewhere in my closet." Billy smiled.
"You'll have to show it to us one of these days." Adam said, Billy nodding in agreement. Ernie came out with a small cake and said his final good bye to Kim before they all made their way to Aisha's house. Once they grabbed Kim's things and she thanked Aisha's parents for their hospitality, they made their way to the Command Center.
"Hello rangers. I hope your day was pleasant." Alpha greeted them as he moved around the room.
"Yes it was." Billy spoke up.
"Alpha is Zordon busy?" Kim asked.
"I am here Kimberly. I hope your day was enjoyable." Zordon spoke, appearing in his warp tube.
"Yes it was. I couldn't ask for a better group of friends." Kim beamed.
"Excellent. Now, I know that you have to get to the airport soon. You asked me earlier, if you could pass on your powers before departing for Florida. And though it pains me, it seems the time has come. I know you and I discussed the possibilities for who your successor will be. You seemed pretty confident in your choice then, and as I have not heard anything else from you, I assume that you have remained positive in who you've chosen. It is now that you must reveal your decision to your teammates." The other rangers were shocked. They didn't know Kim had already chosen her successor. Kim took a deep breath before speaking.
"After careful consideration, I've decided that the appropriate person to take over my place as the pink power ranger will be Katherine." Kim looked at the others, trying to gauge their reactions to her choice. She hoped that they wouldn't be angry or hurt that she hadn't consulted them in this matter. The others had a look of confusion, trying to digest this information. Aisha and Tommy were to first to break into smiles and nodding their heads in approval. Once the news settled, the others joined in.
"That's great Kim. We couldn't agree more." Billy said enthusiastically.
"Yeah, Kim. Excellent choice." Adam said.
"Thanks guys. I figured since she has been hanging out with us and knows all about what we do, who better than he to take over?"
"I agree Kimberly. Alpha, please teleport Katherine here." Alpha did as he was asked, pushing some buttons that caused a bright light to shine in the middle of the Command Center. After a moment, the light faded to reveal Katherine.
"Hey guys. What's up?" Kat asked, surprised when she felt herself teleporting from her room. She looked around and realized that she was standing in front of Zordon.
"Kat. As you know, I have to pass on my powers before I leave. I have talked to Zordon already, and I've gotten the others approvals. I have decided that you would make the perfect addition to this team and would make an excellent ranger. I know you will help this team immensely and they will help you in this new venture. If you accept, Zordon will perform the power transfer." Kat nodded, to shocked to speak. She didn't know when she would become the new ranger, but she hadn't expected it to be like this.
"Katherine," Zordon spoke, " do you accept the powers of the Pink Crane and take on the duties and responsibilities of being a power ranger?"
"Kimberly, please take Katherine's hands in your own." Kim did as she was told and both girls were enveloped in a bright pink light. Slowly, the pink light began to ebb away to a soft glow, revealing the pink power floating in front of Kim. She let go of Kat's hands and plucked the coin from the air. She looked at it fondly, smiling as she held it in her hands. She felt the groove of the crane and ran her thumb across it, appreciating every moment that she had spent with this coin for the last two years of a her life. Taking a deep breath, she looked at Kat and placed the coin in her hands before stepping back.
"You are now the Pink Crane Power Ranger. As my successor, you are now the pilot of the Crane Zord and have control over the Crane Ninjetti powers. I trust you to live up to this legacy. Welcome to the family." Kim smiled before hugging Kat and standing next to Zordon.
"Thanks Kim. I promise I won't let you down." Kat smiled staring at the coin in her hands.
"Congratulations Kat." Tommy said, stepping up and hugging her as well. He went to stand next to Kim and enveloped her in a one armed hug. "You did great Beautiful."
"Thanks." Kim smiled at him and waited for the others to finish hugging Kat.
"Congratulations Katherine. As Kimberly said, welcome to the Ranger family. Over the next few days you will become acclimated to your new powers. Do not be afraid to ask for help during this time, or any other for that matter. We are here to answer any and all questions."
"Thank you Zordon. All of you. I promise I'll make all of you proud."
"I am confident you will Katherine." Alpha said, stepping up to hug her as well.
"Guys, I think it's time for me to head out." Kim said, looking at her watch.
"You're right. Kat, will you be joining us?" Billy asked.
"Sorry guys. My parents aren't back from work yet. I'm suppose to stay home until they get back. But I hope that you have a safe flight. And I'm sure you'll do great at the Pan Globals." Kat said, smiling and hugging Kim once more.
"Thanks Kat. And you'll do great with your new job."
"Thanks Kim. I'll miss you."
"I'll miss you too."
"Take care. And I'll see you guys later." Kat waved once and teleported back home.
"Alright. We should really head out now." Kim turned to face Alpha, "Alpha, you're coolest robot I've ever met. I'm going to miss you so much. Thank you for everything." Kim hugged the android hard.
"Ayayayayai, You're going to make my circuit board short out. I will miss you too Kimberly."
"Zordon," Kim let go of Alpha and turned to face him, "Thank you. For everything. For never giving up on me and believing in me. You have been like a father to me and for that I will forever be thankful. It is in part because of you that I have become a better person. So, thank you." Kim placed one hand on his warp tube. I mean it dad. Thank you for everything.
"You are welcome Kimberly. Thank you for accepting the power. You have all become like my children and it pains me to see you go. Bit I understand that you need to go and spread your wings. Be careful on your new journey and may the power protect you." Zordon smiled at Kim, knowing that she understood the hidden meaning of his message.
"I'll miss you Zordon."
"And I you, my pink crane." Kim stepped back as she wiped tears from the corner of her eyes. She looked at the Command Center and was saddened by the thought that it would be a long time before she would be back in this wonderful place. The rangers said their good byes to Zordon and Alpha before heading back to their cars and making their way to the airport.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ Friday, 5:30 p.m. ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
The ride to the airport was relatively quiet. Each ranger was deep in though on how things would change. Once they got there, Kim checked in and waited to pass through security. Boarding for Kim's flight was soon called and she began heading to the checkpoint. As she was getting in line she heard her name being called out.
"Kim! Wait!" Kat rushed to make it to where the group was standing. Kim smiled at the fact that Kat did try to make it to the airport after all. She pulled Kat to the side, wanting to talk to her in private.
"Kat. I need you to do something for me. Take this," Kim handed her a small package, making sure the others didn't see the exchange. "Keep it safe. Don't show it to anyone, not even Tommy. Don't worry, everything will be explained soon. Zordon or Alpha will let you know when to bring this out. In the mean time, keep it in your room in the Command Center." Kat nodded and placed the package in her bag.
"Okay. I won't show anyone. I promise."
"Thank you." Kim hugged her one more time before Tommy called out that she was going to miss her flight. Kim said good bye to everyone once again before getting in line through security and boarding the plane. Making sure she wasn't noticed, she made her way to the bathroom from there and she teleported to her brand new pink 1967 mustang – a gift from her father – and waitied until the others left the airport before heading towards the desert.
Kimberly was driving towards the Command Center. She was alone in her thoughts as she made her way to her home now. Once she reached her destination, she pulled of the main road and onto an unmarked path towards the Zord Bay entrance. Once she reached the garage door she swiped her right wrist to unlock it and parked her car inside. She was really glad that Zordon had given her the car as a welcome to the family gift. She also thought it was cool that only she knew that there was a garage for cars in the Zord Bay. She stepped out of her car and stretched out, a bit sore from the drive. Once she felt rejuvenated, Kim changed into her Eltarian Ninjetti clothing and made sure her mask was on before stepping out into the open.
"Dad?" Kim asked out loud.
"Zordon is currently talking to the other rangers." Alpha said as he entered the Zord Bay.
"Oh. Alright. I think I'll just let him know I'm here."
"Yes. That's a good idea."
"Okay. Thanks Alpha." Kim focused on her invisibility and headed up to the first floor. When she got there she saw that all the rangers were there, each looking sad and unsure of what to do.
"Rangers. I believe that a break is in order. Barring any attack made by Zedd, take the next few days to acclimate to these new changes. Time must be given for your emotions to settle."
"We know. It's just that it's hard knowing that Kim isn't here anymore." Kat said.
"Like Zordon said, this is going to take some time." Adam mentioned. Kim was listening to them speak for a bit before deciding to interrupt. She focused on her levitation power and took to the air. Once there, she made sure to alter her voice before speaking out loud.
"I hope I am not interrupting anything." The rangers jumped, startled by the sudden noise. They looked around them, looking for the source, before they looked up to see Kim slowly becoming visible and began descending to the ground.
"Welcome back Kimana." Zordon spoke, smiling at her entrance.
"It is good to be back, even if it's only for a few days."
"It is good to see you are safe. I assume your journey went smoothly?"
"Everything went according to plan. I do not expect any problems any time soon."
"This is good news. You have arrived at a difficult time for my rangers. The original pink ranger has decided to pursue a different path and so we now have a new member on the team. Kimana, I'd like you to meet Katherine Hillard."
"Hello." Kat walked up to Kim and held out her hand.
"It is nice to meet you Katherine." Kim took her hand, hoping not to give herself away. Despite her efforts, upon contact with Kat's hand, both felt a familiar tug. They did not immediately let go of each other's hands. A nagging feeling in the back of her head was telling Kat that she knew this person from somewhere, but she couldn't quite put her finger on it. Realizing that they were still shaking hands, Kat let go, blushing slightly.
"Please, call me Kat."
"Very well, It is nice to meet you Kat." Kim turned to face Zordon again. "Father I believe I will retire for the night. I have had a very busy day and I'm hoping to get a good night's sleep."
"I understand. Will you be staying in your quarters for the rest of the day?"
"I believe so. I might have a short work out before going to bed."
"You know where all the facilities are located. Have a good night and I'll see you in the morning." She turned to the rangers once again. "Good night rangers. Good night Alpha." Kim began to blend in to her surroundings when Tommy interrupted her.
"Kimana, wait!" He walked up to her and stuck his hand out, "I'd like to apologize for my behavior the last time you were here. It was uncalled for. I hope you can forgive me and give me a second change." Kim smiled inwardly and felt incredibly proud of him.
"Thank you for your apology. Do not dwell on the past. All is forgotten. My father explained the situation. I understand why you had that reaction. I'm glad everything turned out alright."
"Us too. Let me introduce you to the rest of the team." Everyone stood behind Tommy and each stepped forward to introduce themselves.
"I'm Adam, nice to meet you."
"My names is William, but my friends call me Billy."
"It is a pleasure to meet the rangers my father speaks of so often. I'd like to thank you for all your help. My father and I are grateful for everything you've done."
"We're glad to be of service." Billy said smiling.
"Thank you anyway. I hope you all have a good evening. I'll see you early in the morning father."
"That sounds good. I'd like to speak to you before you retire for the night." Kimberly nodded in acknowledgement before disappearing and heading towards her new room. Meanwhile, Zordon turned to the others and addressed them once more.
"Thank you for your apology Tommy."
"It was necessary Zordon. I was a complete and total jerk to her last time."
"What are you going to do for the rest of the evening?"
"I think we're all going to hang out here for tonight. We'll head home sometime tomorrow."
"Ok. Each of you is dealing with the loss of Kimberly in a different way. Take your time to adjust and accept what has happened. Please remember that I am here if you need anything."
"Thanks Zordon. We'll be okay." Rocky said with a sad smile.
"I hope to see you all tomorrow morning. Have a good night." Zordon left his warp tube and appeared in the one located inside his chambers. Kim was levitating while sitting indian style a few feet from the floor and reading a book. He smiled at how well she was progressing with her powers.
"I see you have begun to manage your powers and integrate them into everyday tasks." Kimberly looked up at hearing her father's voice and smiled at his comment.
"Yeah. I figured the more I practiced – regardless of the task – the better I would get."
"You are correct."
"So are you all set up there?" Kim asked, her eyes going back to the book.
"Yes. They are all deeply saddened by your departure."
"I saw. I'm sad that I had to leave too. But, it was a necessary choice. It's all for the greater good."
"Sadly, yes. Now what do you prefer to do about your sleeping arrangements for this weekend?"
"If it's okay with you, I'll just set up a small cot here. There's no point in setting something up since I'll be leaving on Sunday."
"If that is what you want, I'll have Alpha set something up. Shall I do that now or until after you're done with your workout?"
"I don't know how long I'll be gone. I guess we should set it up now so that if I do end up knocking out after my workout then it won't be on the floor."
"Very well. I'll see you back here when you're done." Zordon decided to pick up where he left off in the book he was reading just as Kimberly headed towards the gym.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 10:00 p.m. ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Kim was floating three feet off the ground. Unlike earlier in Zordon's room, now she was standing up. She learned that in this particular position, finding her balance while floating in mid air was more difficult. After a physical workout for an hour, she decided to work some more on her powers. Focusing completely on keeping her balance, Kim didn't notice when Katherine entered the room. Kat watched as Kim floated off the ground in a seemingly effortless motion. Kim began to rise a little bit, struggling as she went up every inch. After another minute she began to falter, swaying a bit before finally falling down. Kat rushed to help her, instantly kneeling beside her.
"Kimana, are you okay?"
"Katherine. I didn't notice you were there." Kat offered a hand, which Kim took, and pulled her up. "Thank you. I didn't expect to land on my butt when I started this exercise."
"That was impressive, even though you're probably the only person I've met with super powers like this."
"Yes well, not too many of us are around to be seen."
"What else can you do besides levitating and becoming invisible?" Kim grabbed her stuff and began heading towards the elevator. Kat frowned, hoping that she hadn't asked an inappropriate question or offended her in anyway. Kim just looked over her shoulder at Kat, not looking mad at all.
"I'm heading to the kitchen to grab a bite to eat. I can tell you more about my powers there if you don't mind staying up a little longer."
"Sure. So can I ask you something? You don't have to answer if you don't want to."
"What is your question?"
"Do you know why Zordon kept your existence from the rangers for so long? I mean, based on what I saw, the rangers were pretty surprised at the fact that you existed." Kimberly paused for a moment, trying to come up with a reasonable and believable explanation that didn't require her to lie to her friend.
"That would be because of me. What I do is very dangerous and not just for me. I asked him not to say anything because of this. Certain aspects of my life and what I do require my existence to be a secret. Not many people know that I am alive, let alone on Earth. In order to keep my father and this planet safe, I must stay a secret for as long as possible."
"So that trip you just came back from, that had to do with your um...dangerous job?"
"Yes." They entered the kitchen and Kim headed to the fridge to pull the ingredients for a small salad. She placed everything on the counter before getting a plate and utensils to make her food.
"What you guys to here on Earth, defending it against Zedd and Rita, I do on a galactic scale. At least that's what I'm trying to do. Right now, I'm working hard to complete my training in order to begin a galactic alliance against Zedd and all of his allies." Kat nodded and grabbed two glasses of water before helping Kim put away everything. They sat in front of each other, Kat continuing her line of questioning.
"So, what other powers do you have?"
"Well, aside from the two you've seen, I'm a telepath/telekinetic and I can heal. My father said that these are only the basics. Once I've mastered my training, I will have control over these powers and have the possibility to learn others."
"Wow, that's incredible. You must train really hard in order to control all of them."
"Yes I do. Everyday, bright and early. I usually have one training session with my father and then I train myself for the rest of the day."
"What does your training consist of?"
"Meditation, in order to help me focus for about an hour or two before I do anything else. Then, depending on what I'm training for that day, different sessions requiring me to use my powers to the best of my abilities. Levels of intensity increase as I get better."
"It sounds super intense."
"It is." Kim had not touched her food yet, which Kat had noticed. She looked at Kim with a confused stare.
"What is it?"
"Why haven't you touched your food? I assume that you're pretty hungry after working out so hard."
"I am. However, I have a slight problem. I don't know yet whether to I can show my face to anyone. I keep my ninja face mask on for a reason. No one aside from my father and Alpha have seen my true face."
"Oh. I see." Kat nodded. Kim sat uncomfortably. She wasn't sure how to broach the topic of her identity with anyone yet, especially Kat.
"I figured I would answer your questions before going back to my room to eat."
"I understand. Then I shouldn't keep you anymore. But I hope that you know you can trust me...all of us really. We won't do anything to jeopardize your mission."
"Thank you." Kim stood up and grabbed her food. Kat took her glass to the sink before heading to the elevator. Kim figured this would be the last chance to tell Kat the truth before leaving. While she hadn't gotten an answer from Zordon on whether or not Kat would be safe knowing the truth, she had a feeling that Kat would be safe for now and she needed to tell someone soon. Both were quiet, as the elevator doors opened and they stepped in. After a second, the elevator stopped, indicating that they reached the guest rooms floor.
"Good night Kimana. See you tomorrow." Kat smiled as she exited the elevator. Kim took in a deep breath and decided that she would tell Kat tonight.
"Kat, wait." Kat stopped and turned around. Kim got off the elevator and stood next to her. "Can you keep a secret?"
"Um...yeah." Kat looked at Kim quizzically.
"This is a huge secret. One that no one can know about. My life depends on it. And if I tell you my secret, then your life would be in danger as well." Kim wanted Kat to understand the severity of this situation before spilling everything. Kat was trying to process and come up with a good enough secret that required this much of an effort to keep quiet. Just how dangerous is this secret? Could it really kill someone?Could it get me killed? Kim tried to read Kat without using her powers. She didn't want to violate anyone's privacy, especially her friends. Finally Kim spoke again.
"I need to know that you won't tell anyone, not even the other rangers about it."
"I...I d-dont' know." Kat was nervous about all of this. Is this anyway to start my tenure as a ranger? By lying to my friends? Kat looked at Kim, not being able to shake the feeling that she got when she first met Kimana. It was this feeling that somehow reassured her that Kimana was telling the truth and that she needed her. Somehow, she knew that she could trust Kimana and in turn Kimana could trust her.
"Kat?" Kim asked once more, fearing that she might not be able to tell anyone after all. She knew that she was asking a lot of her friend and would not hold it against her if she decided not to get involved.
"Yes. You can trust me to keep your secret. No one will ever know." Kim gave a sigh of relief and smiled at Kat's determination.
"Ok. Hang on." Kim took Kat by the arm and teleported them to Kat's room. She was still in one of the guest rooms, the others helping her move in to the ranger floor tomorrow.
"How did you do that? I thought no one could teleport into a room that wasn't their own."
"They can't. But I can override the security protocols. Zordon's my dad remember? I have an all-access pass the whole Command Center."
"Wow." Kat sat down on her bed while Kim set her food down on the nightstand. She sat down next to Kat and turned to face her.
"Katherine, everything I'm going to say must remain strictly confidential. No one can find out about this. Our lives will depend on it."
"I understand." Kat stared at Kim as she opened a panel next to the bed and pressed a sequence of buttons." Kat looked at Kim in awe.
"Just a precaution. Locking your door and making it soundproof."
"Really? You'll have to show me how to do that later." Kat smiled, trying to relieve some of the tension. Kim nodded in agreement.
"Remember Kat, no matter what you see, no matter what I tell you, you can not tell anyone. Not one word." Kat shook her head, feeling way more nervous now than any other time in her life. Kim closed her eyes and focused on powering down. Kat stared as pink, white, and black light engulfed Kimana. She shielded her eyes, the light feeling a bit too intense due to their proximity. After a minute, Kat lowered her arm, but waited a moment to open her eyes. Kim saw that Kat was hesitant.
"It's okay Kat," Kim dropped the voice modifier and used her normal voice, "you can open your eyes now.". Kat scrunched her face, I know that voice. But it's not possible, she's..Kat opened her eyes slowly, making sure that her vision wasn't blurry before looking at where Kimana was sitting.
AN: So what'd you think? I hope you all liked it. I'm almost done with this part of the trilogy. Probably another 5 chapters left and then we'll be moving on. Though I am debating where the break off will be. Now, the really important question: I'd like to know from all of you guys – what other powers do you think Kim should have? I've named the basics here, but if you guys can think of any others that would be useful or cool to have, let me know.
Review before leaving this page please :D