Disclaimer; I really don't own Power Rangers RPM
A/N: I know, I know, I'm still leaning heavily on the show for dialogue and direction. I promise, this is only going to happen through Ep Five Handshake, but there will be a nearly complete break by Ranger Yellow. Right now, we're still drawing on Ep Two, Fade to Black.
It's nice to have allies, Summer mused as she watched the security feed Dr K had provided her, "If that isn't impressive," she said, "then Scott must have hit his head harder than I thought." She stopped the tape.
"Ranger Red does seem to be somewhat irrational," Dr K agreed.
"That's because Scott is jealous," Summer replied with a faint smirk; "he doesn't like the idea of me being interested in people he hasn't approved of."
"Are you interested in the cyborg?" Dr K asked.
"Only as a teammate," Summer said. She strolled out into the garage and found Scott and Flynn sitting in the briefing area, "Perfect." She smiled at them, "Scott, I want you to watch this, Flynn too." She pointed her remote at the K screens and started the security footage from the beginning.
After it had rolled, she looked at the two of them, "Impressive enough for you?" She asked Scott challengingly.
"Enough," Scott said after a moment, "it still doesn't mean he has the right mentality or temperament."
"Then come talk to him," Summer said, "give him a chance. I think Dillon is exactly what Project Ranger needs."
"Fine," Scott replied. "Although I doubt my dad's going to just let us have him."
"Colonel Truman doesn't have a choice," Dr K said, "if we want the cyborg, then we'll get him."
"Let's go meet the cyborg then," Scott said.
"Scott, I'm still not sure this is a good idea," Flynn said, "I mean, he does have Venjix hardware in him."
Scott nodded, "Flynn, tell me what you're thinking."
"Well, if Dillon didn't have the hardware," Flynn said, "I'd be willing to test him, but we have no guarantee he's on our side."
"We have no proof that he isn't," Summer replied.
"Summer," Scott said, "I let you take point on this because you have a good head on your shoulders, but that doesn't mean this isn't a group decision. Flynn has valid concerns."
"According to the tests we've run on the cyborg," Dr K said, "we have found no traces of Venjix in his programming and what programming exists is entirely on the physical plain. There are a few tests I would need him physically present to conduct, but given what has already been done, we can rest assured that at this time Dillon is in control."
"And what if he's a sleeper," Flynn retorted, "what if he's just waiting for us to trust him before attacking? We're inviting him into the heart of Project Ranger, can Venjix activate programming in him to take us out?"
"I cannot make that determination without having the cyborg on base," Dr K replied, "however, if the cyborg joins Project Ranger, then I will conduct those tests. I highly doubt at this stage that the cybernetic implants could be removed without gross injury to the cyborg, however, there are programs that can be put into the cybernetics that can serve as inhibitors to the Venjix code. They were developed to prevent Venjix from controlling medical implants, but I have no doubt we can successfully adapt them to this task."
"Flynn," Scott began.
"I can't believe you're just going along with this," Flynn interrupted him, "open your eyes. How do you know that we can trust him?"
"Because I can trust you," Scott replied, "and I can trust Summer. When Doctor K and I were running the tests for our new Blue Ranger, I didn't know if I'd pick the right person. I had to trust my instincts and so far, they've proven me right. From the moment, I turned on that camera to look at everyone and saw you, there wasn't another candidate that was good enough. You felt the same way about Summer, and you know it. You wouldn't admit it then and you probably don't remember, but the minute you told me about the pretty blond I knew you'd found our third. Now, I'm trusting Summer, because she knows, just like you and I did. Furthermore, Summer convinced Doctor K and the Colonel to let her look into him and now Doctor K is backing her up."
Flynn stared at him for a long moment, stunned, upset and afraid. Summer kept silent, because Scott would have to get Flynn to give Dillon a chance, not her. "Scott," Flynn said, something in him relaxing.
Scott kissed him, stepping into his personal space, latching onto his jacket, and taking control in less than a minute. Summer gripped the table, sternly telling herself that no matter how hot the image was, she couldn't melt. "Talk to him," Scott said pulling back to look into Flynn's eyes, "if you still think we shouldn't trust him, then we'll talk this out. I don't want someone out there you can't trust to watch your back."
"Thank you," Flynn replied, a little dazed and unsettled. He put his head on Scott's jacket, "thank you for listening."
"That's my job," Scott told him, slipping a hand around Flynn's waist carefully, "and my pleasure." He held his free hand out to Summer, who slid around the table to accept it, but hesitated to let him draw her in.
"Thank you for listening," Summer said instead, "both of you. No matter how crazy I sounded, I'm glad you did."
Flynn reached out a hand and slid it down her arm, "Dustin said we needed to learn to communicate," he said, head still buried in Scott's shoulder.
Scott's stomach growled, making Flynn jump and Summer laugh. "Let's eat," Scott said, "before we do anything else."
Summer nodded, "I do want to talk to Colonel Truman at some point," she said, letting Scott and Flynn lead her into the kitchen. "The way those goons made the guard leave just with a hand gesture? What sort of people do they have working at the prison, it's bad enough that they're underground most of the day."
"Maybe he'll assign Cooper to investigate," Scott said, "undercover."
Summer glanced over at Flynn, who gave Scott an exasperated yet fond look as he freed his hand from Summer. "We can but hope," the blue ranger opined piously.
"If he doesn't," Summer said, "we should do something about that him. I think we've let the insult go unanswered for long enough."
"What, like a prank?" Scott asked.
"Maybe," Summer replied, claiming a stool and watching Flynn make lunch. "You need to talk to Doctor Oliver, Scott."
"Why?" Scott asked.
"Because he's a former black ranger," Summer said, "and if black initiations are anything like the red ones, Dillon might bolt on us." She glanced at her teammate casually, "Are you ever going to let us watch the rest of that record?"
"Not a chance in hell," Scott replied, getting water bottles from the fridge.
"Why not?" Flynn asked distractedly, "It's not like we haven't done stupid things when we were drunk."
They all went still for a long moment, then Summer forced an uncomfortable laugh, "Tell me about it, I still remember the cookies."
"Enough with the cookies," Scott said, "we only did it once!"
"What about my pool table then," Summer countered, "you broke it, what, five times?"
"We made it better," Scott protested.
"Enough," Flynn said, sliding plates with warm casserole across the counter. "If Summer's sick of hearing the cookie story, then I'm tired of hearing her complain about her pool table. It's not like we play her anymore."
"Yeah," Scott said, "you're too good at it."
Summer smirked, "Wouldn't you like to know why?"
"One day," Scott retorted, "I will know why." He ducked his head and began to eat, Summer smiled and followed his example.
Their arrival at the prison caused some stir, especially when they mentioned wanting to meet Dillon. Summer thought it was probably because of the somewhat wide spread corruption she suspected was going on in the prison, but kept her mouth shut on any observations she had until she saw Dillon on the monitors. He was handcuffed, with his arms chained to his sides, and then to the chair, with extra chains being fed outside the cage to guards. Four guards surrounded him with handguns pointed at his head and chest. "Is that really necessary," she asked the guard who was taking them in, "he looks like he can barely breathe."
"Ms, uh, Ranger Yellow," the guard replied nervously, glancing up at the monitor in fear, "you didn't see what he did when we tried to put him in the general population."
"Actually," Summer replied, "I did see the video footage." She smiled tightly when the guard swallowed and paled a little more.
"We all did," Scott added in a bored tone, "I'll be honest, it was quite enlightening to see just how unbiased security is around here."
Summer stepped past the stunned guard and around the corner into the meeting room, "Dillon," she said, doing her best to ignore the guards and chains when something inside of her was aching to morph and bust her teammate free; "this is Scott."
"Scott Truman, team leader," Scott said with a slight nod. From the cocksure attitude, Summer knew that Scott was just as pissed off as she was.
"And this is," Summer continued.
"Flynn," Flynn said, giving Scott a look, "just plain Flynn." Flynn was hard to read when he wanted to be, and right now, he clearly wanted to be inscrutable.
"And there's someone else I'd like you to meet," Summer continued, "the man behind all the Ranger technology." She let Flynn put Dr K's portable screen on the table.
"Greetings Dillon," Dr K said, "my name is Dr K."
Summer glanced at Scott and Flynn, because it was very rare for them to hear Dr K use someone's given name, unless you counted Jinx. They had, in fact, joked at the verbal acrobatics Dr K had employed with the Dino Thunders and the Ninjas. Dillon, on the other hand, scoffed, "Man, I thought I was weird. You guys, beat me by a mile." Summer held herself still, watching him, "Dr K? That's too much, you guys are just."
Summer hit Scott discretely with her elbow, "The only chance you have of ever getting out of here," Scott interrupted him, leaning forward on the table. He didn't look at her, so she kept her face still, hiding the smile at how smoothly he eased away from her.
"And what do I have to do," Dillon countered, "buy a ticket in your little freak show?" Summer crossed her arms briefly, more to restrain the urge to smack him upside the head than anything.
"Not exactly," Flynn replied. Summer could have sang out loud, she knew getting the boys to meet Dillon was the right choice, she had known it!
"You have to join us," Summer said instead, dropping her arms and sliding her hands in her pockets to keep herself from being tempted.
"So, what's it going to be Dillon," Scott continued, "are you in, or are you out?"
I am good! Summer silently shouted.
"Well now that all depends," Dillon said, and Summer stopped her mental celebration, "do I get to pick my own color?"
Summer blinked and fought to keep the smile off her face, because Dillon was going to fit into the Garage perfectly. Scott huffed a laugh and shook his head slightly, "We were going to offer you the Series Black morpher," Scott said, cutting off Dr K. "But, you know, we could give you the green."
"I would prefer the Black," Dillon said after a brief moment, as if to think it over.
"Somehow, I thought you would," Flynn said, picking up the K screen.
"We're going to go see about getting your release," Summer told Dillon, "we should have you out of here in no time."
"What about my car?" Dillon asked.
"I'll look into it," Flynn said, "they are my specialty after all."
"You do that," Scott agreed, "Summer, with me."
They retreated from the cell and walked back through the security gates, "I see what you mean," Flynn said, looking at Summer, "he's not what I expected."
"He wants to belong," Summer replied, "but because of what Venjix did, he's become accustomed to being alone."
"I'd say he's desperate to belong," Scott said.
"Maybe," Summer replied, "but he needs to do this on his own terms."