Chapter 30: Storm Before the Calm Part 2
Shane, Tori, Dustin and Zoe worked non-stop for over an hour, moving fallen debris around the destroyed Ninja Ops, desperately searching for Cam, Ari and Sensei.
"This can't be how it ends," Shane refused to give up, pushing a piece of the wall up as best he could, but it was just too heavy for him to manage alone.
"Whoa, what happened here?" the four looked around quickly as Hunter spoke, looking around Ninja Ops as he stood at the entrance with his brother.
"You guys made it!" Dustin grinned as they walked in, and Zoe flew straight into Hunter, who hugged her tightly. "We thought you'd be toast for sure!" the Yellow Ranger breathed, relieved that the Thunder Rangers were ok.
"Vexacus torched the Thunder Megazord, so we ejected," Blake nodded with a small smile, looking to Tori as she smiled thankfully at him.
"Where's Cam? And Ari?" Hunter asked, looking down at Zoe.
"Don't know," Shane answered when Zoe refused to release him to answer.
"Sensei?" Hunter looked to the three with a frown.
"Lothor got here before we did," Dustin shrugged lightly, frowning. "We were too late," he sighed.
"Better late than never, I always say," they looked around as Sensei walked into view, in human form again, smiling softly at them. The Wind Ninjas lit up in joy at the sight of their teacher.
"Sensei!" they ran over to him, hugging Sensei tightly in relief. "You're ok!" he laughed softly at their joy.
"It's good to see you," Hunter nodded as Zoe finally released him to look around.
"Finally," she added with a small smile, her eyes rimmed red.
"Yeah, you're like, totally normal!" Dustin grinned widely.
"Lothors energy blast reversed the transmutation, and allowed me to return to my human form," Sensei explained as his students backed away to let him breathe.
"But...where are Cam and Ari?" Tori's frown returned, and Sensei's own smile dropped instantly.
"They have been captured..." he revealed, looking down sadly. He was terrified of what Lothor would do to Cam, who had humiliated him in the past. Not to mention Ari, and her power that was completely new to the exiled ninja, and therefore highly appealing to him. He had grown very fond of the young Sun Ninja over the past year, who had lived with him and Cam.
"We'll get him back, Sensei," Tori promised.
"It will not be easy, Tori," Sensei shook his head. "My darkest fears have come to pass. Lothor is preparing to open the Abyss of Evil," he revealed, his smile not returning. Zoe's eyes widened in fear and she pressed into Hunter again as she recognised the name of the place that had been well heard of in her family, mostly as a way to make her and her brothers behave.
"Are you serious?" Blake also recognised the name as Hunter took Zoe's hand, sensing her fear. "I thought that was just Ninja folklore," the Navy Ranger shook his head.
"It is no coincidence that Blue Bay Harbour is home to the Wind Ninja Academy," Sensei told him. "We are the Guardians to an invisible gateway. A gateway, that once opened, will allow all the evil of the ages gone by to escape," he explained to the three Wind Ninjas, who still looked confused.
"Then why hasn't Lothor opened it before now?" Shane questioned.
"The Abyss can only be opened when it is filled to capacity," Sensei told him, shaking his head. "Even then, it can only be opened by a mighty force," his words allowed them to realise just why Lothor had attacked Ninja Ops and captured Cam.
"The Samurai Amulet," Zoe breathed in horror.
"Yes," Sensei nodded, confirming their suspicions. "I believe Lothor intends to use Cam's powers to open the Abyss, and allow the Army of Evil to enter our world," he summed up. Everyone was silent as they processed this, horrified and desperately trying to come up with an idea that would help them.
"That's right," Lothor smirked as he watched the Samurai Amulet, which rested on a machine that forced it to glow. "Drain all its precious energy," he spoke to it with a smirk, a greedy look in his eyes.
"I've set the self-destruct mechanism on the ship's bridge, sir," Choobo announced as he ambled in, past Cam and Ari. "Just like you ordered," Lothor glanced to the giant green alien as a countdown began on the computer.
"Excellent," he voiced his approval, nodding at his one remaining general.
"How bad is it that Choobo, out of all the freaky generals Lothor had, is the last one standing?" Ari muttered to Cam, apparently not bothered by the impending explosion. Cam just raised an eyebrow at her, wondering why she thought of such things at the worst possible time.
"Hey uncle, what about us?" Marah and Kapri asked as they looked over to him.
"What about you?" when he glanced to his nieces, Lothor's voice became colder.
"Well, now that we're really evil, don't we get to play a part in your ultimate victory?" Kapri asked curiously, wondering why they had been completely ignored.
"Now that you're evil, I suppose I can't really trust you, can I?" their jaws dropped at Lothor's harsh words. "You were a little too enthusiastic when you were plotting with Shimazu against me!" he snarled at the pair.
"But uncle, you told us to do that!" Marah protested, her eyes wide in fear.
"Remember? We were all in on it to trick Vexacus into trying to get rid of your Generals?" Kapri reminded him desperately.
"Well that explains some things," Ari mused quietly.
"Yes, yes," Lothor nodded impatiently. "We had to make sure that the Abyss was at maximum capacity," he shrugged. His eyes suddenly gleamed, and he looked up with a wide smirk. "But you know, there's always room for two more! Choobo!" he barked to his officer, who had the Kelzacks restrain the pair and yank them off.
"Oh no, curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!" Ari rolled her eyes, and Cam glanced at her.
"I think losing your powers actually made you weirder," he commented, and Ari just shrugged as Marah and Kapri were yanked past them, screeching and yelling in protest.
"We have to stop the Abyss from opening," Shane broke the silence that had fallen over Ninja Ops. The remaining Rangers sat around, not knowing what to do. "There has to be a way," he insisted.
"We need help," Blake spoke up from nearby. "Ninja help," he emphasised, looking around at them.
"Where are we gonna find that?" Shane asked sceptically. Bar Sensei Omino's daughter Leanne, they were the only remaining Ninjas on Earth.
"Lothor's ship!" Hunter turned to look at them. "Every ninja on the planet is locked up there!" he reminded them.
"We could take the Dragon Force Vehicle!" Dustin realised, remembering Cam's Zord that had gotten him onto Lothor's ship once before.
"Wait!" Hunter's bark stopped them all. "Blake and I should go alone," he told them, and the other four paused in surprise. "We've been on his ship. We know where to look," he reminded them, and the Wind Ninjas nodded in agreement. Zoe kept silent, her fists clenched.
"The Dragon Force Vehicle is in the Zord Bay," Sensei spoke, turning away from the battered bookshelf to look at them. "Be careful. And thank you for your courage," he smiled at them.
"You can thank us when we come back," Blake told him confidently, but his eyes were on Tori, who couldn't hide her worry.
"And you better come back," Zoe finally spoke, shoving Hunter. He grinned at her, and she managed a weak smile back.
"Let's go," he looked to Blake, who nodded. The two ran out of Ninja Ops, to the Zord Bay, and Zoe clamped her eyes shut, praying that they succeeded.
"I keep thinking this is my fault..." Shane admitted softly as they sat in Ninja Ops, waiting impatiently. The others glanced to him, not understanding.
"That's crazy," Tori dismissed it with a shake of her head. "How could you have done anything differently?" she asked him, and Shane frowned, looking down.
"Been a better Ranger? If we'd destroyed Lothor sooner, none of this would have happened," he shook his head, frustrated.
"You guys ever think, if we hadn't been late to class that day...we wouldn't even be Power Rangers..." Dustin smiled softly as he thought about it.
"You were always meant to be Rangers," Sensei finally found what he was searching for, and they looked around quickly.
"What do you mean?" Shane asked as they got up and walked over to him. Sensei opened the box, and held up a piece of paper.
"This is the last entry on the Scroll of Destiny," he told them.
"I thought that thing disappeared years ago?" Zoe frowned, and Sensei smiled at her.
"Not all of it," he held it out for them to see, and they were surprised to find that it was a picture of the three Wind Ninjas.
"It's us!" Dustin exclaimed with a grin.
"No way!" Tori laughed.
"As you can see, you were late precisely so that you would be the ones to become Power Rangers," Sensei told them with a smile.
"And you knew this all along?" Shane asked with a frown. "Why didn't you show us this sooner?" he questioned.
"Would you have believed me, had you not learned the truth for yourself?" Sensei countered, and Shane sighed, knowing that their teacher was right. "I have never doubted the scroll's prophecy...and neither should you," he told them as he took the paper back.
"So that explains why you put up with them," Zoe smirked, and they frowned at her.
"So, what happens next?" Shane looked back up at Sensei.
"This is the end of the Scroll," Sensei shook his head. "It does not say who will be victorious, only that you must be there to face Lothor at the Abyss of Evil," he told them.
"Then that's where we'll be," Shane decided.
"I may not be part of this prophecy, but I'm right there beside you," Zoe told them, and they smiled at her.
"RANGER FORM, HA!" their confidence restored, the four headed back out to the Abyss of Evil to face off Lothor for the final battle.
The four Rangers returned to the now abandoned Action Games, with Zoe using Ari's Tsunami Cycle, and blasted the Kelzacks that were massing there. They slowed to a stop, and jumped off their bikes, straight into action. Zoe leapt over a table and kicked it into the Kelzacks that followed her. She kicked another one out of the way, before the ground shook, and they all looked up to see a giant Zord towering over them.
"I think we found Lothor!" Shane yelled to the others. "Look!" Lothor's laughed echoed down to them as they continued fighting off the Kelzacks. "Let's go!" they returned to their bikes, and shot towards the Zord, which was using the stolen energy from the Samurai Amulet to break open the Abyss.
"My guess is, that's the Abyss of Evil," Zoe groaned as they looked down at it.
"We've got to stop him!" Tori cried.
"This is it!" Shane called, looking to them. "Come on guys! Megazord time!" he called. They called on their Zords, and Zoe once again piloted the Swan Zord. "Ready Rangers?" Shane called to them.
"Let's finish this!" Zoe cheered. They ran at Lothor, who blasted them in response, making them cry out as they were thrown about.
"My arms are getting tired," Ari complained as she pulled at her restraints again.
"Ari, we're on a ship that's going to explode. Must you complain about your arms?" Cam rolled his eyes.
"Actually Cam, yeah. It helps me take my mind off it until help arrives," Ari grinned at him.
"This way," they looked around, just as Hunter and Blake ran into view.
"Y'see?" Cam grinned as Ari laughed, and the Thunder Rangers spotted them.
"Cam! Ari!" the two ran over, straight past Marah and Kapri, who let out cries.
"I see you guys survived," Ari grinned, and sighed with relief as they released her from the ropes around her wrists. "My arms thank you," she told them.
"Thanks guys," Cam nodded as they released him as well.
"Hey!" Marah's yell made them look over. "Hello? You can't just leave us here!" she insisted.
"We can't?" Ari asked, looking innocently up at the three with her.
"Why shouldn't we?" Hunter just rolled his eyes. The two had spent the entire year trying to kill them. The two seemed to remember this, and struggled to come up with a reason.
"Because they're family," Cam provided them with a reason, sighing heavily.
"I dunno guys, I'd probably leave Mal and Jessie up here," Ari grinned, but helped Blake release Kapri anyway. As they were freed, an explosion rocked the ship, and they were thrown about.
"We gotta get outta here!" Blake yelled, getting back to his feet.
"Tell me how to release the Ninja student pods," Cam told his cousins as they stood in front of him.
"Hey cousin, you know the Yellow Ranger? I was just wondering, is he still mad at me? Cause I think he's really cute and-"
"Go near Dustin after what you did to him before, and this exploding ship will be the last of your problems," Ari interrupted her with a growl, a dark expression on her face.
"You have been hanging out with Zoe far too long," Hunter commented as Marah instantly fell silent, frightened by her.
"I know...I think I scared myself..." Ari blinked and looked up at him with wide eyes.
"Can we talk about this later?" Cam rolled his eyes, before they bumped into something. Marah and Kapri turned around, and looked up at Choobo.
"Hello! Going somewhere?" he laughed as he walked in, pushing them back inside. "Oh, I see you have some new friends!" he exclaimed as Kelzacks appeared out of nowhere. "This should be fun!" he laughed as they looked around.
"Oh, I guess now would be a good time to tell you that Lothor took Cam's Samurai Amulet, and stole my Ranger Powers," Ari told the Thunder Rangers, who frowned.
"You waited till now to tell us?" Hunter demanded.
"I had other pressing matters on my mind," Ari shrugged, and the pair sighed.
"For old time's sake?" Hunter looked to his brother.
"Oh yeah," Blake nodded.
"THUNDER STORM, RANGER FORM!" the two morphed, and for a moment Ari didn't react to the Kelzacks closing in on them, as she realised that she wouldn't be able to do the same again.
"Ari, move!" she snapped back to reality as Cam's yell reached her, and she dodged a blade aiming for her shoulder. The fight broke out, all while the timer slowly ticked down.
Back on Earth, Lothor was dominating the battle against the Storm Megazord and the Swan Zord. He blasted the Megazord again, throwing it to the ground, before grabbing the Swan Zord by the neck.
"This is the most fun I've had all season!" Lothor declared happily, and sent the same red pulse through the Swan Zord. The console sparked, beginning to reach its limit, as Zoe cried out, thrown about the cockpit.
Ari dodged another Kelzack's attack and flipped it, before striking another in the chest with a punch. She spun through the air, and dropped down low as she landed, sweeping the legs out from under another two Kelzacks. The ship shuddered again, and Ari lost her balance, falling to the ground.
"Ok, starting to get to the point where even I can't keep optimistic..." she muttered, and rolled forwards, pushing up and kicking a Kelzack in the face. As she landed, the ship shook again, the explosions getting nearer, and she hit the ground again. "And my bruises are getting bruises," she complained.
"Hunter! Blake!" Cam's yell caught her attention nearby. "You've gotta blow the console!" he called to them. He pointed to the main console, and they nodded. The two combined their weapons, and blasted the machine, which freed the Ninjas held captive on board. Knowing that time was almost up, Choobo and the last of the Kelzacks disappeared. As they did, more explosions shook the ship, and the place began to fall apart around them.
"Ok, now would be a really good time to get off this ship!" Ari yelled. A golden light surrounded them, and they all disappeared, reappearing in the Dragon Force Vehicle.
"I gotta say, that's one handy power," Blake couldn't help but laugh as Cam recovered from his surprise and took control, flying them back to Earth as Lothor's ship exploded.
Zoe fought with the Swan Zord as best she could as it lay on the ground, but it had completely given in. The lights flickered and the entire Zord was groaning as Lothor's Zord stood over the fallen Storm Megazord.
"Taste your defeat!" Lothor declared.
"Never!" Shane roared. He summoned a Power Disk that slammed into Lothor's Zord. It began sparking, clearly completely designed for offence, and Lothor let out a yell. The Storm Megazord got back up, only for Lothor to grab hold of their Megazord. His Zord exploded, and the three ejected, much to Zoe's relief. Abandoning the broken Swan Zord, she landed by the fallen Wind Ninjas, and helped them up.
"The Megazord, it's gone!" Shane cried in horror. They ran over to the Abyss of Evil, their visors opening as they looked down.
"What's happening?" Zoe wondered as the ground began to shake again.
"I don't know," Tori shook her head. The ground, glowing purple, split open, and spirits of the evil monsters who had been trapped inside began to emerge. They landed around the four, completely materialising as they surrounded them.
"Not good," Dustin gulped.
"They're back," Shane growled. The monsters all laughed, before parting to let Lothor through. The evil Ninja laughed as they glared furiously at him.
"How does it feel to fail, Rangers?" he asked mockingly.
"You should know!" Shane snapped, and Lothor laughed.
"Not this time," he told them confidently.
"Ready?" Shane called, and the others nodded. They took a step forwards, their visors shutting, and drew their weapons.
"Destroy them!" Lothor roared out the order, and with a deafening yell, the monsters raced forwards to attack them. The Rangers ran to meet them, and a large scale battle started up. However, with only four of them, and over a hundred of their enemies, it didn't take long for them to be thrown to the ground together, their swords gone.
"Uh...do we have a Plan B?" Zoe asked hopefully as they got back to their feet, standing back to back. Suddenly a Crimson blast slammed into several of the monsters, and Hunter flew overhead.
"Mind if I play through?" he called down to them.
"You will never stop me!" Lothor roared up at the smirking Crimson Ranger.
"But we will," Blake called out, and they all spun around to see the Navy Ranger standing with Ari, and a crowd of Ninjas. Lothor's confidence disappeared entirely as he stared at them, stunned.
"Awesome!" Dustin cheered as Hunter landed beside them.
"Good to see you made it back," Zoe commented, but couldn't hide her grin.
"I figured if I died up there, you'd find some way to bring me back so you could kill me again in a much more painful way," he shrugged. Zoe couldn't help but laugh, and her laughter quivered at the end.
"You sure you're ok to fight?" Blake glanced to Ari, who had gotten hold of a pair of swords.
"Hey, these guys are good to fight, so am I," she nodded confidently as she glanced to the other Ninjas. Shane called on his Battilizer, and Choobo appeared by Lothor, along with his Kelzacks.
"Attack!" Lothor's fury took over, and he barked out the order to his army. The battle resumed, and this time began to go in the Ranger's favour as they tossed monster after monster back into the Abyss. Ari grinned, tightening her grips on her swords, and took out the Kelzacks that ran at her. She kicked them one after another, back into the Abyss, before ducking under Footzilla's swing.
"I remember you," she commented, and kicked him before he could speak. He stumbled over the railing behind him, and tumbled into the Abyss. "Have a nice trip," she giggled, and tossed another Kelzack in after him. Shane took to the air nearby, blasting his Battilizer and taking out all of the resurrected generals. Furious, Lothor then shot a beam of energy at Shane. His battilizer absorbed the damage, and was destroyed as a result, knocking Shane out of the air. He crashed onto a stack of hay, crying out and rolling to the ground.
"Shane!" the Rangers all ran to him and helped him up.
"He destroyed the Battilizer..." Shane whispered in horror. His precious gift from Skyla, his most powerful weapon, was gone. Lothor landed nearby, and they turned to face him with a scowl. The other Ninjas focused on finishing off the last of Lothor's army. The Rangers ran at Lothor, working together to try and take him down, but Lothor was fast and powerful, knocking them all about. As he swung for Ari, she disappeared, and fell to the ground a couple of metres back.
"Oh, now you kick in," she muttered to herself as Lothor knocked Hunter and Blake to the ground. He then blasted Tori and Dustin, and deflected Zoe's Moon Arrow back at her, throwing her aside. As he went to blast the fallen Earth and Water Rangers, Shane stepped in the way, blocking it through sheer force of will. However, the strength it took was all Shane had left, and he fell to the ground.
"Enough!" Lothor roared furiously. "It's time to finish you all!" he declared, holding the Samurai Amulet over his head. "Give me those Ranger Powers!" he held it out, and absorbed Hunter and Blake's powers. They crashed to the ground as they demorphed, and Lothor smirked. "Nothing can stop the power of the Amulet!" he laughed.
"I believe that belongs to me!" Cam called as he landed nearby, moving into a fighting stance as Lothor looked around quickly.
"Not any more," he smirked, and sent Cam flying with a powerful attack. Laughing, Lothor leapt through the air and landed in front of the fallen Samurai. "Goodbye, nephew," he smirked down at him.
"Cam!" Zoe got up and fired another attack, but Lothor absorbed it using the Amulet, along with her powers. Zoe hit the ground hard, her glasses falling off from the impact. Lothor turned back to Cam, only for Shane, Tori and Dustin to jump in the way.
"He's not going anywhere, got it?!" Shane yelled at him as Lothor frowned.
"Fine, then I'll take you in his place!" Lothor then drained them of their energy as well, and the three crashed to the ground, demorphing. "You fools!" Lothor yelled as they all stubbornly got back to their feet and stood together. "Haven't you had enough?" he demanded angrily. He blasted them back off their feet, but they all got back up, and fell into fighting stances.
"Let's finish this," Lothor growled at their persistence. "I have your Ranger powers! You are at my mercy, once and for all!" he told them, and his next attack floored Ari, Zoe, Cam, Hunter and Blake, but the Wind Ninjas refused to back down.
"We won't let you win," Shane shook his head stubbornly.
"What can you do to me, without your powers?" Lothor asked mockingly.
"We may not be Power Rangers, but we still have power!" Shane yelled at him. "Power of Air!"
"Power of Earth!"
"Power of Water!"
"Ninja Powers!" the three called on their powerful attacks, and the wind picked up around Lothor, whose eyes widened.
"No!" he screamed as the three attacks slammed into him. He was tossed backwards, straight into the Abyss, which exploded and closed.
After a moment of stunned silence, the fallen Ninjas got up and hurried over to them. Zoe hugged Ari tightly, relieved to see her in one piece.
"What happened?" Tori asked as the other Ninjas joined them as well.
"Lothor's evil...it must have overloaded the Abyss..." Blake realised as he stood beside her.
"Causing it to implode on itself," Cam finished with a nod.
"So he's gone?" Dustin asked hopefully as he looked to the Samurai. "Really gone?"
"I believe so," Cam nodded. None of them reacted, unable to completely process what had just happened.
"And our Ranger Powers?" Hunter asked as he glanced to his morpher.
"They're gone too..." Shane realised as he looked down at his own powerless morpher.
After the place had been checked out, the US Action Games resumed, and both Shane and Dustin entered their competitions. Zoe had remained behind at the Academy, claiming to have things to do.
"Check it!" after the end of the Games, Tori and Ari stood with Kelly, waiting for the others, and looked around as Hunter, Dustin and Blake bounded over. Dustin carried a large trophy, grinning widely.
"Third place! That's awesome!" Tori smiled brightly at the proud Earth Ninja.
"Yeah, my boy came through," Blake clapped their friend on the shoulder with a grin.
"I'm so glad you changed to Freestyle," Kelly smiled at him. "You have a real career ahead of you," she told him, and Dustin's smile grew.
"You guys!" they all looked around as Shane ran over to them. "You won't believe this! You know the guys from Truth Trucks?" he asked, barely able to contain his excitement.
"Well duh," Ari rolled her eyes, but Shane couldn't even bring himself to mock-glare at her.
"They wanna sponsor me!" he told them, and they all congratulated him. "A national tour and everything," he grinned at them.
"What did you tell them?" Kelly asked curiously, and Shane hesitated, before shaking his head.
After the US Action Games ended, a graduation ceremony was held at the newly repaired Wind Ninja Academy.
"Shane Clarke," the Air Ninja wasn't able to conceal his wide grin as he walked up to collect his scroll from Sensei. Ari had been alarmed to see him back in human form when they had returned, complaining that she had gotten used to the Guinea Pig form, and would now have to adjust.
"Tori Hanson," Sensei called up the blonde girl, who smiled up at him as she bowed respectfully.
"Dustin Brookes," the Earth Ninja went up next.
"Blake Bradley," Blake couldn't hide his own grin as Sensei Omino watched nearby with a collection of Thunder Ninjas.
"Hunter Bradley," the blonde teen collected his scroll, and dared to wink at Zoe, who stood with her parents, and five brothers. She grinned back, a blush spreading across her face as the five young men around her looked at her quickly, raising their eyebrows. They had already been curious when she had decided to become a teacher at the Celestial Academy, instead of continuing her travels.
"Ari Raynes," Sensei Sugiura smiled proudly as the Sun Ninja tried to behave normally and collect her scroll, but was smiling widely as she did.
"And finally, Cam Watanabe," Sensei couldn't hide his own proud smile as his son walked up and bowed to him, collecting his scroll before joining the others. "You have all earned the badge of honour that is to graduate from the Wind Ninja Academy. I could not be more proud of you. Of the sacrifices you have made for your school, and indeed, for your planet," he told them with a smile. "The world is a better place today, because of you," he told them, and they cheered, hugging each other as Zoe couldn't resist joining them.
Tori and Blake walked through the grounds of the Wind Ninja Academy, having managed to slip away from the celebrations and introductions of the new recruits.
"So when do you leave?" Tori asked softly. Since he no longer had more important commitments, Blake had decided to accept Factory Blue's offer.
"I start testing next week. First race is in a month," Blake's voice was equally soft.
"You must be really psyched," Tori tried to force herself to be happy for him, feeling guilty.
"Yeah, it's great," Blake nodded with a grin, but it dropped slightly when he saw her expression. "So uh, you think you might wanna come out and watch me, sometime?" he asked awkwardly. Tori smiled again, this time genuinely.
"Yeah! I'm all over it!" she nodded. Hunter ran up behind them, but as they turned to see, gold and silver blurs shot past, taking Hunter with them.
"Uh..." Blake frowned as Tori raised an eyebrow. "Did you see that?" he asked.
"I don't think I'm going to question it," Tori couldn't help but laugh, aware that she was blushing.
"Any reason for the attack?" Hunter asked in amusement as he leaned against a tree. Zoe was pressed against him, peering around him at Tori and Blake as they kept walking. "Not that I'm complaining..." he commented as he put his arms around her. Zoe tore her gaze from the pair walking away, and laughed softly as she looked up at him.
"You might want to be careful," Ari sang from a couple of trees away, still watching Tori and Blake. "Her five brothers, not to mention her Sensei dad, and her really scary mum, are hanging around here," she looked around with a grin, and Zoe rolled her eyes.
"My mum isn't scary. I think we'll risk it," she decided.
"Uh, shouldn't I get a say in that?" Hunter asked, raising an eyebrow at the Moon Ninja.
"Hmm, nope!" Zoe decided, and pulled him down into a soft kiss. Ari made a disgusted noise, shaking her head.
"You guys are gross," she told them, following Tori and Blake to get away from the pair.
"Come on Tor, you don't sound that enthusiastic," Blake was laughing when Ari reached them. "What, are you gonna miss me?" he teased.
"Of course!" Tori exclaimed, and both went bright red. "I mean...of course I'll miss you. I'm used to seeing you around the place all the time," she shrugged, avoiding his gaze.
"Tori, I've told you before, you're a bad liar," Blake laughed, nudging her before stopping her. "Hey, I'll miss you too, you know that?" he told her, and Tori smiled shyly, still avoiding his gaze.
"Yeah, and the others-"
"But mostly you," Blake insisted, taking her hand. The sudden action made her look at him quickly, her eyes widening in surprise. "I'll miss you the most Tori," he shrugged, starting to lose his nerve. Before he had entirely, however, Tori linked her fingers in his, and smiled. "So...you think you can come see me sometime out there...not just for a race?" he asked awkwardly, making Tori's smile grow.
"Definitely," she confirmed, and pressed a kiss to his cheek as Zoe and Hunter walked up behind Ari.
"Well, finally," Hunter sighed, rolling his eyes.
"Yeah, I thought they were never going to admit it," Ari nodded with a grin.
"It's been like, what, a year?" Zoe scoffed.
"Something like that," Hunter confirmed, shaking his head at how long it had taken his much more confident brother to admit how much he really cared about Tori. Not like it was news to anyone. "Oh! I forgot!" before Zoe and Ari could stop him, Hunter bounded over to his brother. Tori and Blake looked up quickly, going red. "Sensei Omino just asked me to be the head teacher at the Thunder Ninja Academy!" he told Blake, who grinned at him.
"That's great," Tori smiled.
"Hey, why'd you tell him first!" Zoe ran over and pushed him, making both him and Blake laugh.
"Cause he likes me best," Blake smirked.
"Please don't challenge her like that," Ari groaned as she joined them, and Zoe smirked. Since Lothor's defeat, Zoe and Hunter had been closer than ever, much to Ari's horror. She had lost count of the times she had walked in on them making out in places they shouldn't have been.
"Hey guys, you ready to do this?" Shane and Dustin caught up to the group, and they nodded.
"Oh yeah Ari, dad wants to talk to you," Zoe remembered, and Ari groaned.
"Why'd you wait till now to tell me?" she demanded.
"Because you were too busy spying on Blake and Tori," Zoe smirked, and the two looked at the Sun Ninja quickly, scowling at her as they went bright red. The 15 year old laughed weakly, before running off, not willing to stick around and suffer the consequences.
Cam stood at the entrance of the Wind Ninja Academy, listing off the new students as they passed him.
"Caaaaam!" he raised an eyebrow and looked up, just as Ari ran into him.
"What's wrong Ari?" the Samurai asked with a grin. The girl released him as the new students stared.
"Sensei Sugiura is making me go to Reefside!" Ari pouted, and Cam blinked several times in disguise. "Said that he pulled some strings, and that I'd be going into the final year of high school!" she complained. "I'm only 15!" she exclaimed.
"You'll be 16 when the school term starts," Cam told her, returning to marking off names.
"Exactly!" Ari whined at him. "16, not 18!" she pointed out, and Cam sighed.
"See this?" Cam looked at her, and pointed to his face. "This is my 'I don't care' face," he told her. Ari frowned.
"That's your normal face," she accused, which only made Cam laugh.
"Don't worry Ari, you'll be fine," he told her. "You helped save the world at 15 years of age. I think you can handle being a little younger than your classmates," he pointed out, and Ari couldn't help but smile.
"I am pretty awesome, aren't I?" she grinned, but it dropped instantly as Marah and Kapri stood in front of her and Cam.
"You're kidding," Cam sighed.
"Hello? Family, right?" Kapri grinned at him.
"Bet you regret saying that now," Ari grinned at him, and Cam levelled a cool stare at her, which only made Ari giggle more.
"Cam, we really have to talk about these outfits, cause this makes my butt look really big," Marah complained to Cam as he shook his head. Kapri rolled her eyes.
"Not as big as your head," she muttered. The pair began bickering, walking off as Cam sighed.
"It is a shame one cannot choose one's family," Sensei smiled as he joined Cam and Ari, who both looked exhausted from the brief encounter with the pair.
"I'm just glad I don't have to feed mine guinea pig food any more," Cam smiled to his father as the last of the students walked in. Sensei and Ari laughed, before someone shouted out.
"Hey! Hold up!" they looked around to see three students climbing up the hill.
"You three?" Cam and Ari demanded as they stared at the three teens who had attempted to help them fight off the Kelzacks when they had first attacked the Action Games.
"Ninjas, dude," one of them grinned as he caught his breath. The girl, who had been frowning at Ari, rolled her eyes.
"No-one says dude anymore," she told him, and the three walked off as the pair started arguing.
"Wait, since when did people stop saying dude?" Ari looked alarmed, and Cam groaned.
"Dad...I don't think I have it in me to go through this again," he admitted, and Ari grinned. She had heard all about when Tori, Shane and Dustin had started out.
"Then perhaps we should leave their training, to the three new teachers," Sensei smiled, and they looked over to where Shane, Tori and Dustin emerged, wearing robes of a Sensei, in their respective colours. "A happy ending is nothing more than a new beginning" Sensei told them as Cam couldn't help but smile at the three, who bowed back. "Besides, one should never break up a winning team," Sensei laughed as Hunter, Blake and Zoe joined them, complimenting the three on their new garbs. Their time as Rangers had ended, and they were finally able to return to their normal lives.
So the first fic is finally done! I had so much fun writing this, and I hope you enjoyed reading it just as much! I will be posting the first chapter of Dino Thunder: The Jurassic Sun, in the next few days hopefully, when I get back from Dublin!
Thank you all for reading, and for my reviewers, favouriters and followers, who kept me writing! You guys are all awesome!
Let me know what you think!