Chapter 9: The Obligatory Ten Minutes of Sentai Footage

by juniperphoenix

It started with ten pinpricks of light, glowing like rainbow-colored beacons in the darkness. The blue flame glowed with them, content and secure in the Power they shared.

Then suddenly, the Power surged white-hot, and five of the lights exploded into pillars of flame. Red, green, blue, yellow, and pink raced outward in a shock wave of burning intensity that made everything else seem dim by comparison. The other five flames, though they remained small, nevertheless brightened; as if the Power touched them in some special way that was different from the way it touched all the billions and billions of colorless lights throughout the Universe. The blue flame was affected in the same way, burning a brilliant sapphire as it yearned to join the others. The whole spectacle defied imagination. It seemed as if the entire world had suddenly exploded into color…

Billy jerked awake, his heart pounding. A flood of adrenaline obliterated every trace of the sedative he'd been given that morning, and he sat trembling as he realized what had just taken place.

"They morphed," he whispered. "They morphed, and I felt it somehow…" He looked around and saw that the clinic was empty, except for himself and Rachel. The veterinarian was standing at the entrance, looking at something outside. Something about her posture, the way she kept behind the edge of the tent flap, made it seem almost as if she was hiding from something.

"Rachel?" he ventured. "What's happening?"

Rachel jumped at the unexpected voice. For one irrational moment, she thought that the gold things had somehow gotten into the clinic. She breathed a sigh of relief when she realized that it had merely been Billy, who was sitting up in bed with a very confused look on his face.

Quickly composing herself as she approached him, she said, "Billy, you're awake? How are you feeling?"

"What's happening?" he repeated. He could hear shouting and metallic clangs coming from somewhere nearby, and had a sinking suspicion that he knew exactly what it was.

"Um… nothing," Rachel hedged. "You should try to get some more rest."

"Rachel, there's something out there! Will you please tell me what's going on?"

She sighed and glanced over her shoulder again. "Cogs," she said finally. "At least, that's what your friend Tanya called them."

"Are they all right? My friends, I mean?"

Rachel managed a grin. "You mean, the Power Rangers?" Seeing Billy's shocked expression, she continued, "Come on, give me some credit! It was a little hard to miss."

Billy was gaping. "How — how did you find out?"

"Well, my first clue was when they started glowing, transformed into colored costumes, and yelled 'Power Rangers,'" the veterinarian replied.

Billy gave a sheepish smile. "I suppose that would tend to arouse suspicion, wouldn't it?"

"Just a little," Rachel said, smiling back. "Anyway, to answer your question, they're all okay, I think. They're outside trying to fight those things off."

Billy tensed at the word 'fight.' He knew it was completely irrational, but he couldn't help it. The blue flame was blazing hotly inside him, tugging at something deep within his soul as if yearning to join the battle.

Don't be stupid, he told himself. Going out there would be suicidal.

"What are we supposed to do?" he asked Rachel, mainly to distract himself.

"Kat told me to stay here," the young woman replied. "I really wasn't expecting you to wake up." There was a lengthy pause as Rachel stared toward the entrance. The presence of the Cogs obviously had her worried.

"Rachel?" he said questioningly.

"Oh! Sorry." She turned back to him, her grey eyes troubled. "Are they… I mean, how dangerous are those things?"

Billy shrugged. "The others say they're really strong, but not hard to destroy. I don't know, I've never fought them myself."

"You haven't?" Rachel's face wore a confused expression. "But I thought all the Power Rangers fought monsters."

Billy looked away from her questioning gaze. "I'm not a Ranger," he told her.

"You're not?" Rachel frowned. "But I thought… What about the blue flame?"

Billy stared at her incredulously. "How do you know about that?" He had only told a few of his friends, and even they hadn't seemed to believe it…

"You've been talking about it all day," she replied. "I assumed it was just the medication, until I found out about your friends being Power Rangers. Then I thought it must have had something to do with them."

Billy knew what she was getting at. "I used to be one," he said simply.

Rachel wasn't sure how to respond to that. Billy's statement left her with a million questions, but he didn't seem inclined to elaborate. "Do you want to talk about it?" she ventured. Billy shook his head quickly.

"No… it's okay."

It didn't sound okay, but Rachel wasn't going to press the issue. They sank into an uncomfortable silence, only punctuated by the sounds of the battle outside.

Outside the clinic, the present and former Rangers had their hands full. Cogs filled the area between the clinic and the ridge, and it was all the teens could do to fight them off.

Kimberly and Trini fought back to back, letting the Cogs come to them. There was definitely no shortage — the robots were everywhere. They were much stronger than the Putties the girls were used to, but not too difficult to beat after they'd figured out where the sensitive spots were.

"Yah!" Kimberly kicked one Cog hard in the shin, then lunged forward as it stumbled. Her small hands dug into the exposed wiring between its neck and shoulder, and sparks flew as she tore the vital connections loose. The damaged Cog staggered a few feet and then dropped to the ground, convulsing with short-circuits.

Trini tried to do the same, but as she reached for her intended target on a Cog's shoulder, it suddenly grabbed her arm and pulled upward. Trini was yanked off her feet and flipped over the Cog's shoulder, landing hard on her back. As she lay on the ground with the wind knocked out of her, the Cog turned, poised to smash its steel fist into her face.

"Oh, no, you don't!" Tanya sailed through the air in a yellow blur, planting her feet directly in the chest of Trini's attacker.

"Thanks," Trini gasped as the Yellow Zeo Ranger helped her up. Tanya smiled behind her helmet. "No problem." She looked up sharply, seeing that the Cog she had kicked was up again. "Trini, behind you!"

Trini spun instantly, her lightning-fast kick catching the Cog in the side of the head. Already damaged, it crackled with electricity and collapsed.

"Yeah!" Yellow Rangers past and present shared a triumphant high-five.

Tommy and Adam performed nearly identical spin kicks, smashing the same Cog from opposite directions. Even before the first robot had fallen, Adam went after two others, his Power Axes at the ready.

"Wanna play, huh?" the Green Ranger taunted. The Cog on the right lunged for him, and he slashed at it with his axes — stretching out a leg at the same time to trip the other one.

Tommy, meanwhile, had become surrounded. He destroyed the Cogs in front of him first, then did a back flip over the ones behind him. He landed a few feet away and then leapt into the air again, shouting, "Zeo Five Power Kick!" The wall of red energy that accompanied his downward flight slammed four Cogs into rubble.

Tommy looked up in time to see Kimberly headed his way. She executed a series of whipbacks and then a high somersault that landed her right on top of a Cog. As it sizzled into spare parts, she whipped around in a pirouette and yanked the circuits from another. "Hey, awesome moves, Kim!" Tommy complimented.

"It's part of my floor routine for Pan-Globals," she replied with a grin.

"Well, if I could, I'd give you a gold medal right now!"

"No time for that!" Kimberly pointed at another group of Cogs that were heading toward them.

"Right! Zeo Power Sword!"

Kimberly stepped back as Tommy charged the Cogs with his star-handled sword. The Rangers were making headway, she noticed, but there were still a lot of Cogs left. This was shaping up to be one heck of a fight.

Katherine used her Power Shield to deflect a Cog's eyebeams. A shower of sparks resulted, but the Pink Ranger was untouched. "Missed me!" she teased. She threw her shield like a Frisbee, hitting the Cog dead center before it could fire again. The robot convulsed and disintegrated as the Power Shield sailed back into Kat's gloved hands.

Meanwhile, on the hilltop above Kat, Aisha was facing off with several Cogs that had broken off from the main group. "Hyah! Take that, metalhead!" she exclaimed, side-kicking a Cog in the chest. Another Cog came charging toward her, but she dive-rolled between its legs and came up behind it. She grabbed its arms and swung it around toward the edge of the hill.

"Katherine!" Aisha called.

The Pink Zeo Ranger kicked a Cog aside, then looked up and nodded, instantly seeing what Aisha had in mind. "Right!"

"So long, steelface!" Aisha hurled her prisoner down the hillside toward Kat.

When the Cog arrived, Kat was ready for it. "Zeo One, Pink Fire Cloud!" She gathered together all her energy and hurled it in a flaming mass of Pink, obliterating the Cog.

On the hilltop, Aisha stood with her hands on her hips and a satisfied smile. "Don't you know the metallic look is out?"

Queen Machina watched the Cogs with disgust. She had sent a small army of the robots, and yet they were being utterly obliterated. Something obviously had to be done about it.

"Klank!" she ordered suddenly, snapping her fan shut as she turned from the viewer. "Take CyberKitty and get down there! We cannot allow those Zeo Zeros to gain the upper hand!"

"Yes, milady, right away!" Klank made a low bow and hurried from the room. "Come on, Orbus!"

Machina watched them go, and then turned back to the viewer with a smile. It was time for her monster-making debut… time to put an end to the Power Rangers.

There were only a few Cogs left, and they had gathered on the far side of the field to form a small defensive group. The Rangers had them completely surrounded, and were closing in when there was a sudden crack of thunder.

"Oh, no!" warned Kimberly, who was on the far side of the circle. "Look out, you guys!"

"Huh?" Tommy turned, just in time to see a gigantic orange fireball heading straight for him. With a surprised yell, he dove out of the way, and the fireball instead took out a couple of Cogs.

"Man! Where'd that come from?" Tommy asked as Jason helped him up.

"Over here, Rangers!" came a strange, growly voice. The teenagers turned to see what looked like an eight-foot-tall lion standing on its hind legs. It was covered with pieces of metal armor that glinted in the hot sun, and tubes and wires snaked out of its body at odd points.

"Man, that is one messed-up cat!" remarked Zack.

"I am CyberKitty!" the monster proclaimed. "Prepare to be destroyed!"

"Oh, no," complained Adam. "Not another cat monster." Belatedly, he glanced back at the Pink Ranger, who merely shrugged.

"That's no ordinary cat," Tanya observed. "It looks more like a lion."

"Tanya, that's it!" Kat realized. "It's got to be C.C.!"

"C.C.?" Rocky repeated in bewilderment. "Who's that?"

"The lion cub from the clinic," explained Kat. "He disappeared right before the Cogs attacked."

"But if it is C.C., we can't hurt him!" Aisha protested. "He's just a baby!"

"We don't have a choice," Tommy said grimly. "There are too many innocent people in the village for us to risk this thing going on a rampage."

"Tommy's right," put in Kimberly. "Besides, if Mondo's monsters are anything like Zedd's, C.C. should be fine after the spell is broken."

"Are you Power Punks going to discuss this all day," the monster growled impatiently, "or can we get down to business?"

"Be careful what you wish for!" Tommy said threateningly, as Adam, Kat, Tanya, and Rocky dashed to his side. He glanced quickly over at them. "The Zeo Blaster should take care of this cub!"

"Not so fast, Rangers!" came a thick Scottish brogue. "Our wee CyberKitty won't be a cub fer long!"

"Klank!" Tanya pointed to where the robot stood on the side of the hill, just preparing to hurl little Orbus into the air.

"And around and around and awaaaaay we goooo!" Klank let his partner fly, and the little robot landed on CyberKitty with a metallic 'clang.' Immediately, he began transferring the energy beam that would increase the monster's size and power.

"Get ready to roar!" Orbus squeaked.

There was a series of blinding flashes as the monster expanded. The Zeo Rangers could only barely stand to watch through the protective visors on their helmets, and the others had to look away, shielding their eyes. When the electric-blue light faded away, all ten of the teenagers looked up to see CyberKitty, now hundreds of feet tall, towering over them.

Trini glanced from CyberKitty to the others. "What now?"

"The Zeo Megazord will take care of this," Tommy said in a determined voice.

"But what about the Cogs?" Katherine gestured at the handful that were left. The lull in the fighting had given them a chance to spread out, so they were no longer the easy target they had been a few moments earlier.

"We'll clean up those metalheads," said Jason, drawing nods of agreement from Zack, Aisha, Trini, and Kim. "You guys just concentrate on CyberKitty."

"You sure, bro?" Tommy asked with concern.

"We can handle it," Jason replied confidently.

Tommy nodded slowly. "All right." The friends slapped hands, and then stepped back to join their respective groups.

Tommy, Adam, Rocky, Tanya, and Kat raised their hands to the sky. "We need ZeoZord power, now!"

From halfway around the world, the mighty ZeoZords answered the call, taking only a moment longer to respond than they would have in Angel Grove. The Rangers leaped up to meet them, their bodies vanishing into brilliant streaks of color as the Power enhanced their jump.

Materializing in the cockpit of his PhoenixZord, Tommy quickly checked over the controls and power readings. Satisfied, he opened the comm channel to the other Rangers. "We're gonna need the Megazord for this, guys," he said. "Power up your Zeonizer crystals!"

"Right!" the other four replied. Each Ranger inserted his or her crystal into the control panel.

"Initiating Zeo Megazord assembly," Tommy called, "now!"

Machina's monster watched with derision as the ZeoZords began to come together. "You think that's gonna save you?"

The Rangers ignored it.

"Docking complete," Tommy announced as the Phoenixzord locked into place. A moment later, he was on the Megazord's bridge, where the others were waiting.

"Let's do it!" they shouted in unison.

The Megazord approached CyberKitty, which didn't budge a foot from its position. The two goliaths met and locked hands on each other's shoulders, beginning a rather pointless shoving contest that went on for nearly a full minute. Then, Megazord broke the standoff with a kick to CyberKitty's midsection. The lion was so heavily armored that the blow didn't do much damage, but it did knock the monster back a few steps.

"You'll have to do better than that!" it growled, and threw a roundhouse punch at the Megazord's head.

"So will you!" retorted Tommy, as the Zord easily blocked the punch. Unfortunately, there was no time to react to CyberKitty's followup: an identical punch from the opposite side. Megazord went sprawling, and all five Rangers were suddenly glad that there was nothing to hit in the savanna.

<< Previous | Contents | Next >>

Send feedback

Return to Fanfiction