"Class, I've just been given word that the Power Rangers were on the news this weekend!" Ms. Appleby said in an excited voice as Tommy suddenly walked into the room dressed in sneakers, white khakis, and a white t-shirt. "Tommy Oliver, you're late for class; do you mind telling me why that is, please?"
Tommy sighed and handed the note his uncle had written for him to Ms. Appleby, "I have a note," he replied in a polite voice as he watched Ms. Appleby read it. "I also have the makeup homework…"
Suddenly, Dr. Oliver came into the room and handed Tommy a backpack, "You forgot this," he whispered gently to Tommy before leaving again. Tommy blushed, but remained silent and still.
"All right, Tommy, your tardiness is excused," Ms. Appleby said cheerfully. "Please take a seat."
Tommy nodded and quietly slipped into his desk across from Malcolm, trying to ignore the fact that Skull's seat was empty and Bulk was in his seat, silently wondering why Skull wasn't in school.
Ms. Appleby, meanwhile, had put a tape into the VCR and turned on the TV, "I taped this over the weekend and I want everyone to listen carefully," she said, smiling at the class. "Here we go."
A news reporter's face came on the screen, "Once again, the amazing Power Rangers have done good for the City of Angel Grove," he said in a brisk voice. "Mirantha Skullovitch has just explained to us that her son, Eugene, was kidnapped from his cancer treatment at Angel Grove Hospital by henchmen of Rita Repulsa and he was saved by the Power Rangers! Mrs. Skullovitch and her son declined interviews…"
"Cancer?" Bulk whispered, his eyes widening in shock. "My best buddy has cancer and didn't tell me?"
Ms. Appleby cleared her throat and Bulk focused back on the screen, "Also, we have to acknowledge some local citizens as they were faced with a perilous situation of their own and didn't panic under pressure," the reporter continued briskly. "We take you to this video that was shot of the events…"
Jason, Laura, Malcolm, Adam, and Tommy were all shocked when a video of Rito trying to get into a truck where Mark was sitting appeared on the screen. They watched as Rito cackled and aimed his bone sword at the truck, but before he could touch it, Dr. Oliver got right in Rito's face in a fighting stance, "Get out of here you creepy bag of bones," he hissed in an angry voice.
Deeply amused by Dr. Oliver's spunk, Rito scoffed and moved towards the door where Mark was sitting, but Dr. Oliver grabbed Rito and gave him a hard shove away from the truck. Katherine's eyes widened and she quickly moved over to Mark's door to guard her brother from possibly getting hurt by Rito while Rocky and Zack helped Dr. Oliver. Tommy looked almost horrified at his uncle facing off against Rito and was also concerned by the fact that both Rocky and Zack could have also ended up getting hurt.
"The citizens have asked not to be named, but we commend them for assisting the Power Rangers in their efforts to keep Angel Grove a safe place," the reporter said as the image faded. "This is…"
Ms. Appleby shut off the TV and VCR, "Lieutenant Stone of the Angel Grove Police Force was kind enough to videotape these events to show that within each of us is a hero," she said in a gentle voice as she smiled at Rocky, Zack, Katherine, and Mark. "For today's assignment, I'd like each of you to pick a hero and write a paper about why you see your choice as a hero. Tommy, do you have your work?"
For a moment, Tommy didn't reply; he was too busy thinking about how incredibly brave his uncle was in trying to fend off Rito, "Tommy, are you all right?" Ms. Appleby asked, suddenly concerned for his health.
"Yes, I'm fine," Tommy replied as he quickly opened his backpack and pulled out the large binder that had all his completed makeup homework in it. "Here's all the work you asked me to do while I was sick."
Smiling, Ms. Appleby walked over to his desk and took the binder, "Thank you," she replied pleasantly.
"No problem," Tommy replied, his smile fading when Lt. Stone suddenly entered the classroom.
Ms. Appleby walked over to Lt. Stone and the two talked in hushed voices for a minute, "Katherine and Mark, Lieutenant Stone wants to talk with you in the hall for a moment," she said, gazing over at them.
Even though she was confused, Katherine nodded and stood up. She helped Mark stand and guided him towards the door since he still didn't have a new cane. Lt. Stone left the room and they silently followed.
"Class, why don't you use the rest of the period to think about your heroes and plan out your papers?" Ms. Appleby suggested as she took Tommy's binder back to her desk. "I have some marking to do."
Meanwhile, David was lingering outside of Dr. Oliver's office, trying to gather enough courage to knock on the door and talk to his biological uncle about Tommy. David was very anxious to let Tommy know who he was, but he lacked the courage and needed to also be reassured of Tommy's kind nature.
The door suddenly opened and Dr. Oliver, who was still sporting the black eye and bandage on his forehead, poked his head out, "David, what can I do for you?" he asked in a pleasant voice.
"I was hoping to talk to you about Tommy," David replied nervously. "I have a spare and I…"
Dr. Oliver smiled, "You're still nervous about telling him, aren't you?" he asked in a gentle voice.
"He might wonder why I am waiting until now to approach him," David replied nervously.
Nodding, Dr. Oliver leaned against the doorway, "I gave Tommy his half of the arrowhead while he was in the hospital, but I told him that it was a special healing gift," he explained in a gentle voice. "I see that you're wearing your half of the arrowhead, so why don't you start by showing him your piece?"
David nodded and caressed his half arrowhead necklace, but before he could reply, Katherine came speedwalking down the hallway with a distraught looking Mark, "Doctor Oliver, can we talk to you?" she asked in an upset voice. "Lieutenant Stone just told us that our parents went missing during their dig."
"Is there anything I can do?" David asked in a concerned voice, suddenly forgetting about Tommy.
Katherine shook her head, "I think Mark just needs someone to talk to," she replied. "Thank you."
"I'll talk to you later, David," Dr. Oliver said as Katherine led Mark into the office. "Okay?"
As the office door closed, David nodded and turned away; he had to talk to Tommy as soon as possible.
The bell rang and Laura was the first out of the classroom with her arms full of books because she had lost her backpack earlier that day when she had left it on the sink of the girl's bathroom to use the toilet and had come out to find it gone, but her books there.
She quietly made her way over to her assigned locker and was annoyed to find Bulk hanging out at her locker with her empty backpack in his hand.
"What do you want, Farkas?" Laura asked in an annoyed voice. "Come to return my backpack?"
Bulk cringed, "Don't call me that!" he hissed in an annoyed voice. "I need you to do me a favor."
"You can't copy my essay," Laura replied sternly. "I don't have any heroes that I can about."
Bulk scoffed, "I need you to help me sneak out of school so I can go visit Skull in the hospital," he replied in an anxious whisper. "I want to ask him why he didn't bother to tell me that he was sick with cancer."
"You can visit Skull after school," Laura replied in an annoyed voice as she gently shunted Bulk aside so she could get to her locker. "Give me back my backpack so I can get on with my day please; right now."
Bulk suddenly looked amused and chuckled, "Did your mom and dad hit you on the head hard enough for you to forget who you're talking to?" he replied in a loud voice. "You can't tell me what to do."
As Bulk laughed, Laura suddenly flashed back to when her parents would mock her for being too weak to stand up for herself and she began hitting Bulk hard, thinking he was a recurrence of her past.
Bulk's laughter alerted Jason, Malcolm, Adam, and Tommy as they came out of Ms. Appleby's class and they, along with a small crowd of students, were shocked to see Laura trying to fight Bulk and failing miserably while Bulk held her empty backpack in his hand and wore an amused expression on his face.
"All right, that's quite enough," Mr. Caplan said as he came down the hallway, waded through the crowd, and got between Bulk and Laura. "Would someone mind telling me what's going on?"
Laura blinked and suddenly looked around confused, "What was I doing?" she asked, suddenly feeling very disoriented as she looked at Bulk holding her backpack. "Bulk stole my backpack, Mister Caplan."
"Bulk, please return Miss Hammond's backpack to her," Mr. Caplan said in an impatient voice.
Bulk scoffed, but returned the backpack, "Miss Hammond, please come with me right now," Mr. Caplan said in a commanding voice. "Everyone else please go back to whatever you were doing."
"What's going on?" Katherine asked as she came down the hallway from Dr. Oliver's office after leaving Mark there so he could chat privately with Dr. Oliver. "Why's there a big crowd in the hallway?"
Jason looked at Katherine, "Bulk was bothering Laura and she tried to beat him up," he replied.
"Bulk, I'll see you in detention after school for stealing Miss Hammond's backpack," Mr. Caplan called out as he led a nervous looking Laura down the hallway. "For now, get to your next class please."
Nearly fifteen minutes later, Mr. Caplan stopped outside of a rarely used classroom and opened the door, revealing nothing but dusty desks and shelves full of extra textbooks, "Physically attacking other students is not tolerated at Angel Grove High School in the least bit," he explained in a stern voice. "I understand that Farkas Bulkmeier may have provoked you, but there were better ways to respond to the situation than violence."
"Yes sir," Laura replied, deeply unnerved by what she had done. "How long do I have to sit in here?"
Mr. Caplan sighed, checked his watch, and then pointed into the classroom, "For the rest of the morning at least and we'll consider it a mandatory quiet time session," he said in an impatient voice. "I'll let your teachers know and I'll send someone to come get you around lunch time. Please go sit down."
Swallowing hard, Laura silently walked inside the classroom and sat in the desk closest to the door, remaining silent as Mr. Caplan shut the door. She then put her backpack on the desk and sighed. What had she done?
"Tommy, do you have a minute?" David asked as he entered the weight room and saw Tommy and Jason working out together while Adam and Malcolm sat on the bleachers and did schoolwork.
Tommy nodded and sat up, "Yeah, David, what can I do for you?" he asked in a curious voice.
"I was wondering if we could go for a walk and talk?" David asked, not wanting Jason to overhear.
Deeply confused, Tommy looked to Jason, "I'll be fine," Jason said in a reassuring voice. "Have fun."
Tommy quickly got up and followed Jason out of the weight room, "What can I do for you?" he asked as he and David walked down the hallway. David was silent and gazed at Tommy's necklace for a moment.
"Oh, what do you think of my little half-arrowhead necklace?" Tommy asked as he held it up. "My Uncle Frank gave it to me when I was sick in the hospital and he said it had special healing powers."
David nodded and held up the half-arrowhead necklace that was around his own neck, "I have had this ever since I was a child; my parents gave it to me and my adoptive father let me keep it."
"Wow, you were adopted too?" Tommy asked in an awed voice. "My Uncle Frank adopted me when I was very little."
For a moment David was silent and then moved closer to Tommy; he removed his arrowhead necklace and held it against Tommy's. The two pieces suddenly glowed and fused into a whole piece that quickly faded into a white, triangle-shaped stone. Tommy gasped and quickly removed his necklace.
"The pieces matched," Tommy gasped as he held the stone in the palm of his hand. "Why?"
David smiled and for a moment, he said nothing; he was too afraid of how Tommy would react.
"Why did you want to show me this?" Tommy asked in a nervous voice. "What is this stone?"
Suddenly, the whole arrowhead appeared in David's hand, "I am your brother," he said softly.
"What?" Tommy asked in a shocked voice as he gazed at the stone in his palm and then at David.
"…You should have seen it!" Jason heard as he and Malcolm joined the crowd that was gathering outside the cafeteria waiting for it to open for lunch. "Mister Caplan dragged Laura off for an all-day detention and all I have to do is report for one after school! She's nothing but a violent freak!"
Jason frowned and looked at Malcolm just as Katherine came over to them, "It's not an all-day detention," she whispered to them, having overheard Bulk's comments. "I was helping in the office just before I came here and Mister Caplan just wanted to give Laura time to cool down. He asked me to go and get her before I go to lunch; would you two like to come with me and see how she's doing?"
"I'd better wait here," Malcolm replied in a nervous voice. "I'm volunteering in here over lunch hour."
Jason nodded and followed Katherine down the hallway, "Why would Laura try and attack Bulk over something as meaningless as a backpack?" Katherine asked in a concerned voice. "It's not like her."
Before Jason, who hadn't forgotten what his father had told him, could reply, he spotted Tommy and David sitting in the school foyer deep in conversation while looking at items in each other's hands.
"Yeah Zordon?" Jason asked in a quiet voice as he held his Communicator up to his mouth. "What is it?"
Katherine looked at the Communicator curiously, "Jason, teleport to the Command Center immediately," Zordon replied in a solemn voice. "There is a grave emergency you need to know about."
"Tell Laura I'm sorry," Jason said in a low voice as he darted into an empty classroom to teleport out.
Katherine sighed and continued down the hallway, "Hi Kat," David said in a pleasant voice.
"Hello David," Katherine replied, smiling at him. "Hey Tommy, how are you feeling?"
Tommy and David looked at each other for a moment and then back at Katherine, "Kat, guess what?" Tommy said in an excited voice as he got to his feet. "David and I are brothers; isn't that cool?"
"That's really awesome," Katherine replied in a gentle voice. "I have to go get Laura, so see you."
Tommy frowned, "I heard about her getting in a fight with Bulk," he said. "Is she okay? Where is she?"
"Mister Caplan put her in a classroom and told her to stay there until lunch time to cool down," Katherine replied in a worried voice. "I was helping in the office, so he sent me to get her."
David looked concerned, "Laura as in Laura Hammond, that girl who ran away?" he asked worriedly.
"Laura's not a violent person as far as I know," Tommy commented even though he was very unsure.
Katherine shrugged, "Oh, David, I think Mark's done talking with Doctor Oliver," she said quickly, not wanting to gossip about anyone, especially one as kind as Laura. "He's feeling a lot better than he was."
"Can I come with you, Kat?" Tommy asked in a worried voice. "I'm sure she could use some support."
Katherine nodded as David moved away, "Let's meet up at the Youth Center later, David," Tommy suggested in a kind voice. "I want to get to know you better and to introduce you to my friends."
"All right," David replied in a pleasant voice as he tucked the arrowhead into his pocket. "See you."
Tommy nodded and followed Katherine down the hallway to a closed door, "She's in here," Katherine replied in a pleasant voice. "Mister Caplan's concerned that Laura's having a hard time adjusting…"
Fully understanding what Laura was going through because of his past experiences, Tommy silently opened the door and saw Laura standing by the window, silently gazing outside at the nice day.
"Mister Caplan says you can come out if you're feeling better," Katherine commented as she walked into the room and over to where Laura was standing. "He just wanted you to have a quiet place to relax."
Laura sighed, "Ever since the whole thing with Kimberly and my sister, I've just felt so helpless," she replied in a hollow voice, not bothering to turn and look at them. "That feeling has made me angry."
"Angry at whom?" Katherine asked as she gently put an arm around Laura. "Angry at Tommy or I?"
Shaking her head, Laura turned to face Katherine, "I'm angry that I couldn't do more to stop Kimberly and Rito from taking Ashley away from me again," she replied bitterly. "I had the opportunity to fight Kimberly on my own and I really wanted to; especially after she hurt Tommy, but I couldn't…"
"You were better off not fighting Kimberly," Tommy interjected as he walked into the room. "Rito's put her under some really powerful spell and he obviously gave her some magic too. Jason had the right idea to get us out of there while we were able to escape. You were a great actress then, by the way."
Suddenly realizing that Tommy was referring to the routine she had used to trick Kimberly, Laura blushed and fought the urge to laugh, "It was the only thing I could think of," she replied quietly.
"If you three don't stop talking, you're going to miss the rest of your lunch period," Dr. Oliver said in an amused voice as he entered the classroom. "Laura, I heard you had a little mishap this morning with a Farkas Bulkmeier in the hallway. I want to make sure you're okay before I let you go to lunch. Are you?"
Swallowing hard, Laura tensed up, "Yes sir, everything's fine," she lied cheerfully. "I'm really hungry."
"Katherine, I trust you can help Laura get some lunch?" Dr. Oliver asked in a pleasant voice.
Katherine nodded and led Laura over to the desk where her backpack and books were. Dr. Oliver and Tommy watched silently as Laura and Katherine quickly gathered the items and then left in silence.
"I don't think Laura's being entirely truthful, but I'll approach her later on when she's calmer," Dr. Oliver commented in a gentle voice. "However, Tommy, I'm more concerned about you right now."
Tommy nodded and sighed as he held out the small rock that had appeared after he had combined his arrowhead piece with David's, "David told me who he was after our arrowhead pieces fused together," he explained in a quiet voice. "This appeared in my hand and I started remembering back to when you adopted me. I ended up sharing with David about my time at that psychiatric center when I was young."
Dr. Oliver sighed patiently and gave his nephew a concerned look, "You need to learn to let it go, kiddo," he replied in a gentle voice. "It's good that you shared something personal with your brother, but you can't let it affect what you want to do and who you want to become. We'll keep working on that, okay?"
"Okay," Tommy replied, silently trying to calm himself. "What do I do about this stone, though?"
For a moment, Dr. Oliver examined the stone, "After school's done, why don't you take it to the Command Center and see if Alpha can analyze it for you?" he suggested. "It might be important."
"I'll do that," Tommy replied, slipping the stone into his pocket. "Boy, I'm really, really hungry."
Dr. Oliver chuckled and gestured to the door, "Let's go get some lunch then," he replied gently as he put an arm around his nephew and led him from the room.
"Whoa," Jason said as he touched down in the Command Center and saw Alpha hovering beside the cot where a very pale older man lay asleep. "I thought one had to be a Power Ranger to get in here?!"
The man opened his eyes, "Jason, it's me," he said in a very faint voice. "It's Billy, Jason."
"Billy?" Jason asked, shocked that his friend looked like he was near death. "How did you get so old?"
Billy chuckled and promptly coughed, "The Orb of Doom," he replied tiredly. "I broke it, remember?"
"Billy is correct, Jason," Zordon interjected. "When Billy stole the Orb of Doom from the brainwashed Katherine and broke it, he absorbed some of the energy from it. The result of that is his current state."
Jason looked horrified, "Is there any way to reverse it?" he asked, worried that Billy could die from it.
"There is, but it is very dangerous," Zordon replied. "We have enough energy from the Morphing Grid to send Billy back in time to retrieve a piece of the legendary Zeo Star. The trip into the past and the star piece will cause Billy to revert back to his proper age. It will be the third piece of the star to be retrieved."
Suddenly confused, Jason frowned, "The third piece?" he asked. "What about the first two pieces?"
"You and Malcolm were given the first two pieces when you went back in time to Angel Grove 1987 to protect Kimberly from being erased from history," Zordon replied. "Alpha has secured those pieces in storage for the time being."
Jason looked to Billy, "Are you sure you're up to doing this, Billy?" he asked in a worried voice.
Billy nodded and winced as he got up from the cot, "There's not really a choice," he replied in an anxious tone as he faced his friend. "I want to be put right and the Zeo Star pieces are needed for all of you."
"I don't understand why," Jason commented in a worried voice. "Don't we still have our Ninja Powers?"
Alpha whimpered as Billy began to breathe heavily, "Soon your Ninja Powers will be completely drained because of Rito and Kimberly's interference," Zordon explained. "Each of you will have a part in seeking out and finding each piece of the legendary Zeo Star at one point or another. For now, it is Billy's turn."
"I want to get going," Billy replied as he moved over to the controls and leaned on them for support.
Alpha looked to Jason, "You are here, Jason, because Billy was concerned about failing in his quest and should he fail, you will go back and retrieve the piece yourself. However, I doubt that Billy will fail."
"Billy's never failed at anything," Jason replied confidently. "Be safe during your quest, my friend."
Billy smiled and hugged Jason with all his might, "I will," Billy replied. "Thanks for your confidence."
Jason nodded and silently watched as Alpha hurried over to the teleportation controls and quickly programmed the co-ordinates into the computer, "May the Power protect you, Billy," Zordon said.
"Safe travels my friend," Jason whispered as Billy sighed and teleported out of the Command Center.
Fading rays of sunlight shone down on Billy as he appeared on a dirt road that seemed to lead to nowhere either way. The sky was large and dark with clouds threatening to unleash torrential rain on him, Billy thought, as he began to walk down the dirt road. He suddenly felt stronger and younger.
Just as quickly as it had arrived, the sun was swallowed by the darkness and thunder rumbled overhead.
Rain suddenly fell in a torrential pattern and Billy found himself running to keep himself from being caught in the dirt that was now being soaked into impassable stretches of mud. He could see a collection of well-constructed huts in the distance, but a river separated him from the safety of the small village.
After taking a moment to recall Dulcea's words about facing his demons and remembering when he overcame his fear of water, Billy charged forward and quickly found himself at the steep bank that would lead down into the riverbed and to a log that could serve as a safe way across the river.
Swallowing hard, Billy used any branches he could to carefully make his way down the steep hill and the bridge was quickly within his reach. Even though the bridge looked unstable, Billy summoned what courage he could and slowly began making his way across the narrow bridge with intense concentration.
Just as Billy began to think he would be all right, he suddenly slipped in a patch of mud and fell forward towards a patch of mud covered rocks that were no bigger than his fists. Lightning flashed as his head came into contact with a large stone that was just to the left of a muddy trail that seemed to go upward.
For a moment, Billy lay face down and in shock at what had happened before pain shot through his body, bringing him back to reality. As he lost consciousness, Billy vaguely heard footsteps and yelling nearby.
Please read and give detailed reviews so I feel encouraged to continue the story!