Disclaimer: I do not own any part of Power Rangers RPM.

Summery: After Handshake, Dillon finds an incentive to trust Dr. K.

Author's Note: I wrote this because after Handshake it appeared as though Dillon's attitude towards Dr. K lightened ever so slightly, that is my own opinion on the matter, and I wanted to see those to confront each other after that episode anyway, so I wrote what could have possibly, what I think at least, happened. I am not particularly sure whether I got the characters right, feedback on that and the fic would be appreciated.

An Incentive To Trust

The monotonous, endless tune that came out of the pocket watch kept him perfectly calm; he had to be calm when it was playing, for if he wasn't then the likelihood of him figuring out the mystery that was himself was extremely unlikely. That wasn't to say that he was trying to figure himself out this particular evening. No, he was using the clarity that came with the music to try and figure someone else out, and he was having an increasing amount of difficulty. Though, it had to be said, Dr. K was not like normally people, and that was putting it lightly.

Normal people didn't think it was their responsibility to get rid of a corrupted computer virus to the point where they were forcing people to work for them. Dillon knew that Summer hadn't come to speak with him on her own initiative regardless of what she might say. Normal people weren't as smart as Dr. K was at such a young age, nor did they believe themselves infallible, or feel the need to use their superior intelligence to undermine others - most people didn't have the intellect needed to do that.

Dillon could not remember the last time anyone had infuriated him so suddenly, and even if he could've, he was absolutely sure that no one in his past had deserved to be hated as much a Dr. K. His liking for her had decreased even more when she had finally revealed herself. The air of superiority that she held about her and the fact she was always right, he would never openly admit that, grated Dillon. The fact that everyone wanted him to apologize for his more than just treatment towards her further cemented his dislike of her.

He had after all been shot at by a fridge!

Anyone who could make a fridge fire lasers at you deserved hatred as far as he was concerned.

From his vantage point, leaning over the steel bar outside of his room, his dark eyes acutely overlooked the whole of The Garage, and when the clear metallic door that led into the Ranger Room, and the cause of Dillon's aggravation stepped out, her eyes lit with an angry tint as she looked up at Dillon – she was way too small for that lab coat she insisted on wearing.

Dillon snapped the watch shut, leaving himself and Dr. K staring back at each other in silence. Seeing her now at this impossible hour confirmed what he'd suspected about the petite, young genius. She needed very little sleep. Perhaps none at all.

"Ranger Series Black what are you still doing awake? You are required to be one hundered percent effective at all times. You can not fufil that requirement if you allow sleep to overcome you."

Hypercritical much? Dillon thought as he descended the stairs and continued to regard her silently. "I don't sleep," he finally answered shortly.

"That explains your less than adequate performance in mastering your Bio-Suit's Invincibility protocol," she responded swiftly - as if she had already calculated her response. Perhaps, she had.

Dillon was not having this argument again, so as the tension increased between them he asked, "How did you know I was still awake? You don't appear to have come out for any reason except to harass me."

"Your morphers contain a small tracking device. The other morphers all show their operators to be in their room, and the Bio-signals I am monitoring from them tell me they are all asleep. Your Bio-signal on the other hand showed you awake and your morpher's tracker shows that it has moved very little in the past four hours." She answered as though it should have been obvious.

"You're spying on us?" Dillon stated, eyes narrowing, though the small girl before him wasn't at all intimidated.

"You have to be monitored in case of an attack," she replied matter-of-factly, "it is important that I know where you are at all times."

"What's to stop us from taking off the morphers?" Dillon challenged.

"I'd advice against doing that," Dr. K said calmly. "Trust me; taking yours off would not be in your best interest."

"I don't believe it! You've threatening me?"

"I believe me previous statements covered the required criteria to be a threat." Dr. K responded primly. "So, yes, I am."

"Yet you expect me to trust you?" Dillon demanded.

"Of course Ranger Black," Dr. K said turning away and walking back into the room she'd come from, beckoning with a finger for Dillon to follow. "Your voice was slowly increasing in pitch and volume. It would not have been productive to wake the other Ranger Operators," she supplied by way of explanation. As she seated herself at the computer she regarded him again. "I showed you who I really was," she said her voice sounding strained - was she upset? "Was that not enough for you Ranger Black?"

"No," Dillon answered flatly, "it wasn't."

She rolled her eyes in exasperation and irritation before answering. "You do not understand the magnitude of the current situation I currently face at all do you? You have yet to see the obvious problem of me lending out my trust to those who haven't earned it, specifically you."

"Then enlighten me," Dillon answered his voice filled with hostility.

"You have Venjix hardware inside of your body, no idea how it got there, and no recollection of who you are. Like you yourself said about me, you could be anybody. In essence Ranger Black, you're the biggest risk I've ever taken in my life and it's a risk that I don't like, it could not be fully calculated." Dr. K told him. "That is why I'm wary of trusting you."

"That doesn't explain why you hid from the others," Dillon pointed.

"Isn't it obvious?" Dr. K answered softly, gesturing to herself.

Yes, Dillon supposed it was. Everyone still had difficulty coming to terms with the fact that the voice behind the screen had been a child. Dillon wasn't bothered by the fact said child was female, the voice of Dr. K had always sounded feminine to him.

"You said yourself Ranger Black that we can't trust you," she reminded him. "I trusted you with that morpher you now wear, but if that isn't enough, I do have a proposal for you, a reason for you to trust me."

A raised eyebrow was all that met her statement.

"It's rather simply really," she explained. "You will be a part of Project Ranger till it is no longer required and follow either mine or Ranger Red's order at all times; as well as put your absolute faith in me. In return, I will help you uncover who you really are."

"You can do that?" Dillon managed to keep the astonishment out o his voice and the surprise out of his face and continued to regard Dr. K with a piercing stare. It then became evident to him exactly how much Dr. K actually wanted to rid the world of the Venjix Virus, and Dillon almost felt bad for the way he had acted earlier, enough to mutter a half hearted apology in her direction at the very least.

Dr. K noted that before answering, it would do. "I can do anything," was her response. Dillon was positive that a ghostly smile had graced her lips as she'd said that, and because of that didn't doubt she was telling the truth. "Now do we have a deal?"

Dillon was silently for a long while before he finally responded. "Yes."

"You still have to master your suit's Invincibility protocol," she noted.

He nodded absently; he didn't need sleep he might as well put the time to good use. It would at least be the greatest test of whether their just made agreement actually counted towards trust. "We'll start at one Laser Cannon until you've mastered the ability, and then work upwards," Dr. K informed him. He nodded absently once again.

Moving away from Dr. K he caught her eye for a brief moment before she began typing something into her computer. Standing in the middle of the room, he morphed.

He regretted his decision a moment later as a Laser Cannon blast sent him flying abruptly against the wall, though from Dr. K's perspective he had been given more than enough time to activate the Invincibility protocall.

Activating the Invincibility protocol as he stood up, Dillon watched carefully as another blast slammed into him and after two seconds succeeded in pinning him to the wall.

At least it had worked this time.

Dr. K pressed the 'fire' button again and watched carefully as he managed two and a half seconds shielded before the shield failed. It wasn't the kind of trust she had originally expected from him, maybe she had been slightly wrong to expect totally devotion in the first place, but at least it was a start.

All trust had to start from somewhere, and now Dillon had a reason to trust her.