Author's Note: And now...the reunion you've all been waiting for! Okay so you might be looking more forward to Karone and Zhane's reunion but this is second best, right? :) Thanks for reading! Don't forget email@example.com is the place to send ALL your feedback to me. I really like getting feedback, especially since I barely ever get any. This isn't going to be a very long story, cause it kinda sets up the next story.
"There." The man guiding Karone pointed at a man and a woman shoveling dirt about 10 yards away from them.
"Okay, thanks." She said with a smile and he walked away.
Her parents where right there, in front of her. Up until a few hours ago she didn't know her parents were alive. But somehow, some way, when that man had asked her to sign her name, she knew her parents were there. She stepped forward, then stopped abruptly. What was she going to say? What was she going to do? What were they going to say? What were they going to do? Her parents might have thought she was dead all these years. What if they didn't believe her?
As she stared at her parents, she realized things. She obviously got her looks from her mother. Her mother was about her height, thin, and had blonde hair with a small brown streak in front. Same as her. And her father had hair just like Andros' and the same solemn features as her brother.
She shook out those thoughts and cleared her head. She scanned the area around her and noticed an enormous gate about 40 yards away from her.
She looked up at the sky and noticed an electromagnetic field was placed.
*Dark Specter's thought of everything. * She thought grimly, *He knows the power isn't strong enough to get through an electromagnetic shield. The only way to escape is to get through the gate, then call on my Galaxy Glider. *
She scanned the entrance of the gate, and noticed there were 5 guards.
"That isn't going to be as hard as I thought." She commented to herself, then looked back at her parents, "It's now or never."
She took a deep breath and walked over to them but stopped within 5 feet of them.
Her heart began beating fastly and she froze. She opened her mouth to talk, but nothing came out.
There they were. Her parents. The people that loved her more than anything in the world.
"Mm...mm...Mom? Dad?" She choked fighting the urge to cry at just saying their 'parental' names. She had never called anyone her mom and dad before, and she never thought she would.
They looked around them, then almost turned back to work when they saw her. Both of them dropped their shovels and her mother put her hand on her fathers' arm.
"Daven." Her mother said to her dad, her eyes not leaving Karone as if she were part of a dream that might disappear by looking away.
Daven lifted his head to look at Karone and he froze instantly.
"K...K..." Her dad tried to say her name, but he thought he would cry if he did.
"Karone." She said for him and put her hand over her mouth as tears fell across her face.
Her mother, Collene, gasped and tears started streaming down her face as well.
They both ran to her and hugged her tightly; she put her arms around her mother and hugged as tightly as she possibly could.
She began to sob, uncontrollably. It was something that was obviously expected, considering they hadn't seen each other in a little over 14 years. She had never told anyone about her parent, never even mentioned them when she enrolled in military academy. When a form asked for her parents' name she wrote 'Deceased' and then put Thypan's name in the legal guardian slot. Whenever anyone had asked her about her parents she simply ignored the question and changed the subject entirely. That was particularly hard when she was in the Rytan military. For instance when they had a war against Glacieron, the ice planet, people would talk at nighttime about their families' back home. She would sneak off to her tent and wonder why she didn't belong where she was. Her mind, right then, could not comprehend what she was doing. She was there, hugging her parents, they were alive, they were okay, and she was with them now. As she hugged her parents, she realized just how much she had missed having them. She didn't know what happened to her parents when she was little, but whenever she saw other kids having fun with their parents, it always made her sad and feel lonely. But now, that hole in her heart was being overflown with love from her parents. She had so many things to tell them. So many things...
She hadn't even noticed it, but her and her parents had walked a few yards into the tunnel she just came out of, so the guards would not see them. It would give them a chance to talk this way.
Finally, after what seemed like only a few seconds, but was actually 15 minutes, Karone let go of her parents and wiped the tears off of her eyes.
"How did you get here?" Her father, Daven asked.
"It's a really, really long story." She laughed and smiled, still wiping the tears off her eyes.
"We thought we'd never get to see you again." Her mother cried.
"Tell us everything." Daven said firmly, "We want to know everything."
"Everything?" Karone smiled, and a few tears escaped from her eyes.
"Everything." Her dad smiled back at her.
Zhane's eyes opened sleepily and he looked around confused, then sighed, remembering where he was. He had fallen asleep beside his bed last night, thinking about Karone. As he got up pain shot up his back. He slowly stood all the way up and walked around a little, trying to work the stiffness out.
He walked over to his desk and pulled out the chair, sitting down. He flipped on the computer monitor and while it booted up, he wiped his eyes, trying to wake up faster.
DECA's computer voice alerted him, "Good morning, Zhane."
Even though he knew DECA was programmed to greet him whenever he turned on his computer, he smiled and replied, "Good morning to you too DECA."
He didn't expect a reply, and got straight to work.
"First thing's first." Zhane smiled, "Gotta check my e-mail."
He laughed half-heartily as he remember the time Karone had walked in his room early in the morning and caught him fresh out of bed, checking his e-mail.
"Zhane! What are you doing? You were supposed to meet everyone on the bridge at 7:00 for a debriefing." Karone lectured, then walked closer so she could see what the screen read.
"Oh yeah! I forgot all about that. Sorry." Zhane apologized.
"Don't say you're sorry to me. Andros is the one you should be talkin to." She smiled, then sighed when she read the screen, "Oh please Zhane. You're not checking your e-mail again are you?"
"I might've gotten a message!" He argued.
Karone threw her hands up in the air helplessly, "Zhane you NEVER get mail! Never! I don't think you've gotten a message ever since I've been here!"
Zhane sighed, then commented with a fake sad pout, "You scare all my other girlfriends away."
She glared at him; "They'd better be scared." She couldn't hold the mean look any longer and finally broke out a smile.
He shot her a smile, and she walked over and gave him a small hug, "Andros, bridge. Not happy." Was all she said and she shot him another smile before leaving his room.
*I should've said I loved her then. * He told himself, *I didn't tell her I loved her that often.*
There were so many missed chances. So many times when he could have done this and he could have done that. But he couldn't torture himself with that. He had more important things to worry about. And top priority was finding Karone.
Karone told her parents her entire story. Starting out, the day she was kidnapped. She told them about Darkonda taking her to the Dark Fortress and her bumping into Astronema when they were little. She told them all about how she grew up on Rytan under Thypans' care. Then she told them how she became a Power Ranger, and reuniting with Andros. Her parents cried when they heard he was still alive, and okay. She also told them about Zhane's awakening from hyper sleep, and their newfound love. She also filled them in on Andros and Ashley.
"My little baby." Her mom rubbed her cheek with her hand, "We've missed out on so much of your life."
"But I'm back now, and I've found you. And I'm not ever letting you guys go again." Karone declared and her father shook his head.
"Karone you mustn't think this way. You have to escape, and go back to your team. The world needs the Power Rangers." He told her.
"Dad, I know." Karone smiled, "When I escape, I'm taking you two with me."
Her father and mother looked to the ground in sadness.
Finally, her father spoke again, "My dear, I'm afraid that is impossible. Your mother and I...are not as strong as we used to be. We are weak. You must escape then bring help."
Karone shook her head fastly, "No. I'm not leaving without you.
"Honey, listen to your father. He is right." Her mother tried to tell her.
"I'm not leaving you--" Karone started.
"Karone, I am your father and you will do as I say." Her father said boldly and Karone drew back, surprised.
No one, and I mean, no one had ever talked to Karone that way. Not with such authority.
But surprisingly, Karone backed off and nodded her head, "Okay, father. But as soon as I get out of here, I'm coming back to get help."
They both nodded their heads, and she could tell her parents believed in her.
"What is your plan?" Her father asked curiously.
They walked to the edges of the tunnel and they poked their heads out, just enough to view the gate.
She pointed at the gate, "I'll run up to the gates.....ummmm....then....uh.....I'll think of something else."
Her parents looked at her wide-eyed.
"That's your plan?!" Her mother asked incredulously.
She shrugged her shoulders; "Can you think of a better one?"
Her parents exchanged glances, then shrugged themselves.
"It would probably be like yours." Her father smiled.
"Is there anytime during the day when there aren't as many guards at the gate?" Karone asked them.
"Night time. At night there are only 3 guards. But they move the other 2 into the watch towers." Her father said and Karone pondered that thought a minute.
"I'll leave tonight." She declared, and they all looked back to the gate.
"Hey Zhane." Andros greeted as his friend as he walked onto the bridge.
Zhane didn't reply, and just sat down in his chair.
"Zhane?" Andros asked, but he just continued working.
"Zhane?" Andros asked again, a little more worried this time. His best friend had hardly said a word to him since he had woken up again.
Zhane shook his head, then turned around, "Huh? What?"
Andros sighed and walked over to his best friend, "Are you alright?"
"Yeah, sorry. I was just thinking about something. What's up?" Zhane asked, now his usual self.
"Are you.... taking all of this....okay?" Andros asked, concerned, "I mean, you've been keeping to yourself a lot lately. We all know how much you care about Karone, and we've been trying to give you your space.... but...We just wanted to let you know we're here for you, if you need to talk."
Zhane smiled, laughed and leaned back in his chair, "Ashley has done wondrous things for you Andros."
Andros gave him a confused look, but Carlos, TJ, and Ashley walked into the room.
"Hey guys! We decided to go to dinner at the surf spot. The Synthetron isn't cutting it anymore." Ashley joked.
"So you guys in or out?" TJ asked, excited to eat something other than Synthetron food.
"I'm in." Andros smiled to TJ, then looked at Zhane, "You coming?"
Zhane hesitated, and thought an hour away from the Megaship might do him some good.....but on the other hand, if Karone tried to contact them.... "Nah, count me out this time guys."
They all moaned in disappointment, then he smiled and said, "If Karone tries to contact us, I want to be here. Plus, if there are any emergencies...."
They all knew he was right, but they were sad anyways.
"Want us to bring you something back?" Carlos asked as they all started to walk out the door.
"Yeah get me one of those.....What'd ya call 'em?" Zhane tried to remember.
"Cheeseburgers?" Carlos laughed.
"Yeah, a couple of those." Zhane smiled and they left for the Surf Spot, leaving Zhane to continue working.
3 hours and counting until she attempted the big mistake. After she had hugged her parents for about another 2 hours, she finally had to say good bye and send them back to work. It was hard, seeing them work and not get anything in return.
"But that will only be a temporary problem..." She whispered to herself.
She sat down against mud walled tunnel and sighed.
"Ok, Karone. Let's run back through the big plan." She told herself, "First things, first. Getting to the gate. I'll have to be quick, but careful. Especially since the guards are in the towers looking over everything. Once I get there I'll have the 3 guards to deal with. I'll have to save my strength, they could be tough. Since the gate door is chained, I'll have to get the key.........."
The key. That could be the biggest problem. Getting it, and putting it in the lock would be very tough.
*If I only had my Power Bow.... * She thought to herself, then she sat up, *Wait a second. If I'm a Power Ranger and Zordon always says 'May the Power Protect You'.... *
She stood up and held out her hand, "Power Bow!"
After a few seconds, her Power Bow appears in her hand and she smiles joyfully.
"Yes! You know what Zordon, maybe we have a chance at this." Karone smiled, "Although, I better save it until later. Power Bow, Disengage!"
As her Power Bow disappears, she sits down to conserve her energy for the big escape in less than 3 hours.
Zhane sat in his chair on the bridge working, and suddenly Zordon began talking.
"Zhane may I speak with you for a few minutes?" Zordon asked politely.
"Sure Zordon." Zhane said and turned his chair towards him.
"Zhane, I am aware of how close you and Karone seem to be. I just feel it is my place to tell you she is doing fine." Zordon informed him and Zhane shot up out of his chair and walked over to him.
"You know where she is?!" He asked incredulously.
"I am unaware of her location, but I know she is strong and she will find her way back here. She is very smart, there is no need for your constant worry of her." Zordon lectured him.
"I can't help it Zordon," Zhane shrugged and sat back down, "I try not to worry and think about her too much but.....it's just so hard. I wish there was something I could do, ya know?"
"I understand that completely. You have handled this situation very well. That is what makes you a terrific Power Ranger." Zordon said to him and Zhane smiled.
Jason came walking into the room just then and Zhane shrugged.
"Great, muscle brain is here." He whispered and Jason looked at him.
"What?" Jason asked, obviously he didn't hear.
"Oh I just said, 'Wow, someone's here'." Zhane gave him a fake smile, "I thought everyone had gone down to the Surf Spot."
"They asked, I just didn't feel like going. Ever since Karone's been gone, just doesn't feel the same. I thought I'd stay here and keep scanning." Jason told him and Zhane smirked at him, but he covered the look with a serious one.
"You, uh......You like Karone?" Zhane raised his eyebrow at Jason.
"I enjoyed her company a lot. She's a great person." Jason confided and Zhane made his hand into a fist out of anger and jealousy. Jason gave him an odd look and Zhane looked down at his hand. He had been holding a paper, which was now crumpled up.
*I'll bet you enjoyed her company you--* Zhane thought but was interrupted by Zordon clearing his throat.
He looked over at him and noticed Zordon was giving him a stern look. It's as if he were reading Zhane's mind.
Zhane just shrugged, and with one last dirty look to Jason, he continued working.