Disclaimer: Characters are owned by Saban, I only have ideas and a laptop to write them
A/N: This is a PREQUEL to another story I wrote, called 'The Ghost of Me,' which is a Power Rangers/Harry Potter crossover. You don't need to read it to understand the story, but my intention is to write this in the same universe as that story.
A/N 2: The title of the story is a song title from the band Tenth Avenue North.
"By Your Side"
*Angel Grove, CA*
He'd forgotten how much he missed it. Memories invaded, reminding the strong, muscular teenager of what he had left behind nearly two years before. As he sat in the back of the cab, he took in the sights of all the usual hang-out spots, images popping in his mind of his old friends. They were inseparable, at least since first grade when he had recess with Zack, Billy, Kim, and Trini. 'Who would have thought after all those years on the playground, we'd actually work together to save the world?' Jason Lee Scott mused.
Since he'd left, there had been numerous changes. Tommy was still the leader of the power team, but Billy was the only one left of the original five. Kim had left for her adventure in Florida, and Zack and Trini had stayed in Geneva. There was even a new replacement for one of the replacements! Even the uniforms had changed. There was much excitement for the former red ranger, but also a lot of uncertainty. It was essentially a new team. Sure, he knew Tommy, and at least Billy still worked with the rangers. But what if he came back and didn't fit in? What if he wasn't wanted? "Maybe it was a mistake to come back," he muttered to himself, forgetting the presence of the cab driver.
"What was that?" The driver asked.
"Nothing," Jason responded. "Just thinking out loud, that's all. How long til we get there?"
"10 minutes," he replied. "Of course, that depends on the traffic."
The ranger teens and Billy sat around 'their' table, enjoying some sodas. Tommy and Adam had just finished sparring, while Rocky, Tanya, and Kat had been studying for their latest calculus exam with Billy.
"I'm surprised how much you know, Tanya," Billy said.
"Yeah, you're like a math genius," Rocky said. The comment brought a smile to many of their faces.
"Well, I've always liked math, it is the universal language after all," Tanya grinned. "Hey Adam, you still need to give me my first lesson in martial arts. You were looking pretty good over there!"
"You sure you don't want to learn from Tommy?" He asked sheepishly. "He's a lot better than I am."
"Hey, you and I both know that's not true," Tommy said. "You flat out knocked me on my butt a couple of times."
"So you finally gave our fearless leader what he deserved!" Rocky chimed in, which elicited a laugh from the group.
"What's that supposed to mean, Rocko?" Tommy said with a mischievous grin on his face. Just as he was about to respond, the teens heard an all too familiar six-tone chime. "Guys." Nothing further had to be said, as they all got up and went to the locker area of the building. "Go ahead Zordon, we read you."
"TELEPORT TO THE POWER CHAMBER, KING MONDO IS LAUNCHING AN ATTACK," Zordon's voice boomed.
"We're on it," Tommy replied. They went outside and found a deserted place, and then teleported. They reappeared in the power chamber. "Zordon, what's going on?"
"KING MONDO HAS SENT AN ARMY OF COGS DOWN TO ANGEL GROVE PARK," Zordon's voice boomed. "OUR SCANNERS HAVE PICKED UP A RARE ENERGY SIGNAL SURROUNDING THEIR LOCATION."
"Whatever that is, it can't be good," Rocky replied.
"We'll need to figure out what the signal is," Kat said. "It could be something that Mondo is after."
"Right," Tommy answered. "Let's try to subdue the cogs first, and then look for whatever that thing is."
"Here," Billy interjected, handing them an odd looking device. "This is an energy scanner that I built. You can use it to track whatever it is that's out there."
"Thanks Billy. All right guys, it's morphin time!" The five teens morphed, and went into battle with the cogs.
*Scott Residence, Angel Grove*
"It's so good to have you home!" Olivia Scott said as she hugged Jason tightly.
"It's good to be home, Mom," Jason replied.
"How was the trip back?" She asked, releasing her son from the embrace.
"Long... I feel like it should a lot later."
"Yeah, that would be the jet lag starting to set in. Well, let me help you get your luggage into the house, and then you can rest a bit. You can tell me and your Father all about the Peace Conference first hand when he gets home from work."
"That sounds great, Mom." Jason pulled in his luggage from the front porch, and he and Olivia brought it into his old bedroom, which had been left in the same condition since he had left 2 years earlier. As they unpacked the last of Jason's things in his room, Jason spoke up. "Hey Mom, would you mind if I went out and got some fresh air?"
"Sure, honey," Olivia said. "I'm sure it would do you some good to get out, especially with all the travel you've been doing over the past day or so. Dinner will be on the table at 6, and if you find Tommy or Billy during your exploring, please invite them to come with you!"
"Thanks!" Jason left, knowing that his Mom knew exactly what he was thinking. Sure, he wanted to get outside and not be stuffed up inside, but he desperately wanted to see two of his best friends. He wanted to hear the war stories that they recently had been through. He even secretly hoped that he might be able to get in on the action. 'Hmm... it's a nice day out, I bet the guys are out playing a game or something at the park,' he thought. He jogged about 10 minutes when he got to the edge of the park when he saw something very peculiar. A few metal putty-looking beings stood ahead of him. One of them was holding what looked like a staff, with a weird golden face with six "points" on it.
"We must get this to King Mondo before the rangers get here," one of the cogs said in a cold robotic voice.
"You're not taking that thing anywhere!" Jason said to the three robots.
"You can not stop us, human," The lead cog said. "Destroy him." The other two ran after him, but Jason was ready. He blocked a punch with his forearm, and delivered an elbow to the head, knocking the one backwards. The other cog tried to sweep Jason's leg out from under him, but he jumped over it, and then delivered a powerful kick to his midsection. Suddenly, a beam was fired at Jason, and hit him square in the chest and sent him flying. It was the cog who fired it from the Golden Power staff. "You will not stop us! Prepare to die, human." The cog readied another energy beam from the staff, but as Jason saw the beam begin to come towards him, nothing happened.
"TOMMY!" Kat yelled from the other end of the park. "There's too many of them!" The five rangers were surrounded by what seemed like a hundred cogs. It had been the most they ever tried to fight off at one time, and it was very clear that they were fighting a losing battle.
"Kat!" Tommy replied. "Hold on!" He spinning heel kicked a cog, which caused it to land hard on the ground. He summoned his power sword and sliced through a couple other ones, rushing his way over to the pink ranger. "You all right?"
"I think so... but I can't take much more of this," Kat responded. Suddenly, Adam landed with a thud right beside them, while Rocky and Tanya ran over to the group.
"You ok, buddy?" Rocky asked Adam.
"I'll let you know after we make it through this."
"That's if we make it," Rocky added.
"Come on guys, keep it together," Tommy said. The cogs marched closer to them, while the rangers stood in a fighting stance, taking the time to collect themselves for their next attack.
"You will not keep us from finding the Golden Power Staff!" One of the cogs said in their patented robotic voice.
"Golden Power Staff?" Rocky asked.
"That must've been the object we picked up on the scanner," Tanya said.
"The staff belongs to King Mondo!" Another cog said.
"YOU MEAN THIS STAFF?" a voice shouted from the left of them.
"Who is that, over there?" Tanya pointed, and the other rangers looked.
"Is that..." Adam started.
"No way!" Tommy said. The man they saw began to run towards both them and the cogs, only to show himself with the golden power staff.
"You guys look like you could use some help," Jason said with a smile on his face. "It's Morphin Time! Gold Ranger Power!" In one fell swoop, Jason was encased in the Gold Ranger armor, and began to take out the massive group of cogs. The other rangers joined him, and after a few minutes the cogs teleported back to the moon. Before the rangers had time to process what had happened, the six of them were teleported to the power chamber.
"Aye-yai-yai-yai-yai!" Alpha exclaimed, seeing the sixth ranger. "Who are you?"
"It's all right, Alpha!" Jason said, as he snapped off his helmet to show his identity.
"Jason?" This time, it was Billy who said it.
"Hey bro," he said, as he enveloped him into a big hug. At this point the other rangers took off their helmets. After hugging Billy, he turned to see Tommy, and greeted him with a big smile. "Guess who's back."
"I don't believe it!" Tommy said, also with a huge smile. "I mean, how..."
"I literally got off a plane a couple hours ago from Geneva," Jason explained. "I went to get some fresh air from being cooped up from all the travel, and saw a couple of those robot things going after this staff. I tried to stop them, but they blasted me with it. The last robot tried to finish me off with another blast from it, but it backfired on him. I picked it up, and I could feel the power from it... I knew I was a power ranger again."
"JASON, THIS IS A WONDERFUL SURPRISE!" Zordon exclaimed. "IT IS GREAT TO SEE YOU AGAIN."
"It's great to see you too."
"Sorry, to interrupt," Tanya said. "But, who are you?"
"Sorry, Tanya, I didn't think about that some of you wouldn't know," Tommy said. "This is Jason, the first ever leader of the power rangers. Jason, this is Tanya, and this is Kat."
'Man... she's gorgeous.' Jason thought about Kat as he shook their hands. He was so amazed by her beauty that he had to give himself a mental shake. "Nice to meet you both."
*Scott Residence, Angel Grove*
"Where in the world is Jason?" Richard Scott said to his wife, Olivia. "I would think with the feast you cooked, he would have been here hours ago. Why did you cook so much, anyway?"
"You think our son's going to come through that door all by himself?" She asked with a smile. "I told him to make sure to invite Tommy and Billy, and I'm sure that means they'll bring others as well."
"Hmm... I forgot that that always happened," Richard replied.
"There's a reason why our grocery bill went down so much after Jason left," Olivia chuckled. "And it wasn't because Jason ate so much." Richard grinned at that. His son was a big eater, but she had a good point. It was often the appetite of his friends that caused them to make many more trips to the grocery store.
A couple minutes later, the front door creaked open, giving way to laughter of Jason, Tommy, Billy, Rocky, and Adam, as well as Jason's two newest friends Tanya and Kat. "Hey Mom, Dad, I'm home!"
"I see you brought the cavalry as well," Richard said, smiling at his son. "It's good to have you home, son." He gave Jason a big hug. "So," Richard spoke as the two separated. "I know Tommy and Billy, and I remember briefly meeting Rocky and Adam a couple years back. I don't think I've ever met you both, though."
"Oh, I'm Kat, and this is Tanya."
"Nice to meet you both."
"Dinner's ready!" Olivia shouted from the kitchen.
"We better get going," Richard said to the seven teens. "Otherwise the food will get cold... and no one should ever miss out Mrs. Scott's cheesy chicken casserole."
"Wait... I remember that stuff that one time we came over two years ago," Rocky said. "Let's go!" The group laughed at Rocky while heading into the dining room where the group heard about Jason's adventures in Geneva, Tommy shared how Kim was doing in Florida, and what Jason had missed over the past couple years in Angel Grove. Though the night was a whirlwind, Jason knew one thing: that he felt like he was home. He was surrounded by a group of friends who had a similar mission, and felt he had a purpose in it. And he got to fight alongside his best friend.
To Be Continued...
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