The sound of techno music disturbed the peaceful silence within a small but cozy apartment on the Harvard campus in Massachusetts. The lone young man hid his face under his cotton blankets and moaned quietly.
"Snooze," he muttered weakly, his voice muffled slightly by the thick sheets. The alarm didn't respond to his voice command.
Oh, I forgot, he reflected, grudgingly poking his head from beneath the warmth of his blankets, I deactivated the Snooze command when I 'snoozed' all morning last week, and missed my Business French class...
The young man sat up, and rubbed the sleep from his vibrant aqua-blue eyes. He weakly climbed out of bed, and stretched his arms and back as a morning routine. He then steadied himself on his weary feet, and slowly walked to the bathroom.
"Shower," he commanded, "Pre-programmed water temperature."
The shower in the bathroom obeyed, and the young man undressed and stood under the warm water, soaking his curly caramel hair and sun-bronzed skin. Once he was done showering, another voice command stopped the flow of water, and a drawer from behind him automatically pulled out from the wall, revealing a thick bath towel. He dried off his hair, wrapped the towel around his body, and stared at himself in the mirror over the bathroom sink.
"I look half dead," he said to his reflection. He took out a battery operated razor, and shaved off the overnight stubble on his face. Then, he brushed his teeth, wrapped himself in a bath robe, and stepped out of the bathroom back into his bedroom.
"Any messages?" he asked aloud, digging through his dresser for something to wear.
"One recorded message," said a voice from his personal computer on the large oak desk, "Time recorded: 8:22 a.m. Eastern Standard Time. Sender: Regina Drew."
"Play," he commanded, pulling his head through a classic red and white Harvard sweatshirt. He tucked the bottom into his faded blue jeans, and took a seat at his computer. At the click of a button, the blank screen converted into the image of a beautiful African-American young woman, with a long, dark ponytail and twinkling hazel eyes. She was wearing a wetsuit and a life jacket. The scene behind her was a set of breath-taking cliffs.
"Mornin', Tony!" she greeted warmly, "As you can see, it's me, Regina. I'm at the Grand Canyon, and I can't talk long, because I'm about to go white-water rafting! Too bad you couldn't come with me, but I'll see you soon. I'll be getting back to campus tonight. I'll call you when I get in."
The girl then blew a kiss at the camera, and the screen went blank. Anthony Monroe smiled to himself, as he glanced away from the computer screen to the computerized photograph that had a permanent home on his desk. The image was of him and Regina at Great Adventures last summer. He pressed the button on the bottom of the frame, and the image was set in motion. On the screen, he saw himself holding Regina's hand, and together they leapt into a large wave pool. Once their bodies crashed into the deep water, the image was obscured by a spray of pool water, sprinkled with sunlight. As he watched the scene forever captured on film, his thoughts trailed to Regina Drew, and how their life-long relationship grew from friendship to so much more.
Anthony had known Regina nearly his entire life. Regina was only one year younger than he, and their mothers had been close friends since high school. His first clear memory of Regina was when he was a young boy, watching a wedding ceremony from the front row. Regina was the flower girl, and Anthony remembered watching her march down the isle, with her hair held up in a mass of curls with yellow roses and white beads. In truth, it was the first time Anthony regarded a girl with something other than the disgust common in young boys.
Anthony didn't see Regina again until three years later, due to the fact that Regina and her family lived in Africa. In 2012, Regina and her mother Aisha Drew visited the Monroe family for an entire week, and Anthony remembered how much fun he and Regina had playing sports. Anthony was tall for his age, but Regina was actually taller than he. Regina was the only person Anthony knew who could beat him in basketball. Consistently.
Regina and her family visited the United States every Christmas and during the summer, and each time, Anthony was excited to see her. The tradition continued, and the two children became closer and closer. But Anthony was confused about his feelings for Regina until this past September, right after he had finished moving his things into his new apartment on the Harvard campus. Then, there was a knock on the door, and his then-roommate Robert opened the door. Robert was stunned into silence when he gazed at the young woman at the door, and when Anthony looked to see what was happening, he was stunned too. Regina just looked more radiantly beautiful each and every time Anthony looked at her. He was so surprised when he found out that Regina was attending Harvard as well, and since then, they'd been an inseparable couple. Now, half a year later, they were still together, and their relationship was strong as ever.
"Television," Anthony said, rising to his feet, "CNN news."
The large screen television obeyed his command, and turned on the news. Anthony began tying his sneakers as he absently listened to the report.
"And this just in," said the elderly anchorman. The anchorman looked at the paper passed to him for a few moments, not uttering a word. His eyes were wide with alarm, and Anthony looked up at the screen curiously in response to the prolonged silence. The anchorman finally regained his composure, and turned back to the camera.
"We... we at CNN have just gotten word... that the Terran Power Rangers, the world's greatest defenders, have... perished on their recent mission into space."
Anthony's large eyes shot open in alarm, and he jumped to his feet and stared at the screen in utter shock.
"Yesterday evening, the Terran Power Rangers journeyed into space in their colossal Terra Megazord, in order to deflect a dangerously large meteor that threatened to collide with Earth. We have here... exclusive footage of the catastrophe on satellite recording."
The anchorman faded, and the image of a massive meteor filled the screen. The Terra Megazord was holding its famed Terrasword, and approached the meteor, preparing to slice it in half. But when the energy channeling through the blade was released, instead of pouring out towards the meteor, it channeled back into the zord, and caused the machine to explode.
"The explosion managed to destroy both the Megazord and the meteor. Remains of the zord have been located, but no bodies have been recovered, nor have any signs of life been found. More as it develops..."
"T...television," whispered Anthony in a trembling voice, "Off."
The television turned off, and Anthony sat down on his bed, his eyes watering. He just sat there for a few minutes, mute and motionless, until the computer screen came to life by itself.
"Receiving Electronic Message," said the computer, as the screen cleared. Anthony turned towards the computer, and saw an image of a middle-aged man with graying blonde hair and flooded aqua eyes.
"Tony," said the man, "It's me. Please, pick up."
Anthony stood up and took a seat at the computer. He activated the video camera propped atop his computer monitor, and looked at it blankly, his eyes spilling over.
"Dad," he said quietly.
"Tony, I've sent a private plane to pick you up. It should be arriving in about an hour. Please be at the airport, ready to come home."
"Dad," Anthony said, trying to keep his voice from cracking, "Is it true? Is Mom really...?"
"I... I don't know, Son," he admitted, "I just don't know..."
Scene: Mercerville, New Jersey; March 2025; 9:45 a.m.
Inside a comfortable split-level ranch in the relatively quiet town of Mercerville, a slender young boy was busy doing a routine of push-ups. As he exercised, his chestnut brown chin-length locks flew up and down, and his dark eyes shone with determination.
"Twenty three, twenty four, twenty five!" he breathed, rolling over to lie down on his back. He crossed his arms over his chest, and prepared his body for a round of crunches.
"One, two, three..."
"Micah?" called a gentle voice, knocking on the door, "Are you awake?"
Micah frowned, halting in mid-crunch. He knew that voice, and it could only mean one thing... his parents had left again.
"Of course I'm awake," he snapped, his hurt building and being released in the form of anger, "I'm doing my exercises!"
"Mike? Open the door, please!"
"When I'm done!"
"You, young man, have to start listening to me," the woman sighed, "Now, open this door!"
Micah growled under his breath and rose to his feet. He unlocked the door, and immediately went back to his crunches. A tall brunette woman of about forty years followed him into his room.
"How long have you been exercising?" she asked, noticing the sweat on his gray t-shirt.
"An hour," he muttered.
"Don't you think you've done enough?"
"No," he said with a frown, "Dad exercises more!"
"Your father is an adult," she pointed out softly.
"I know, Aunt Mandi," said Micah, "but if I want to be a martial arts master, and leader of the Power Rangers, I have to stay in shape."
"Who has ever heard of a thirteen year old Power Ranger?" asked Emandia Trueheart, helping Micah up, "Now come on, I made pancakes."
Micah followed his aunt downstairs and into the kitchen, where his uncle David was busy reading the newspaper and drinking a cup of coffee. On the other side of the table, Micah's nine year old brother Devon was enthusiastically consuming pancakes. Micah sat down beside his uncle, and David smiled down at him.
"How's it going, Champ?" he asked. Micah just looked up at him.
"So, where are Mom and Dad this time," Micah asked flatly, "The U.N.? The White House? Another solar system?"
Young Devon glanced up at his older brother inquisitively, muttering an incomprehensible question through his full mouth. Mandi's eyes narrowed, and she threw Micah a withering glance.
"They both had important meetings to attend," she said, her gaze shifting between the boys as she set a plate of pancakes in front of Micah.
"They didn't even say goodbye," Micah said bitterly, "They never say goodbye. They just leave, and they never even tell me they're leaving. I guess I'm just not important enough."
Devon shook his head emphatically, swallowing a long sip of milk to clear his mouth. "Mom and Dad work very hard to keep food on the table and a roof over our heads," he quoted.
Micah groaned. "More like to keep a planet under our feet," he muttered under his breath.
Devon didn't hear his brother's comment, but David was within earshot. He locked his penetrating gaze on the oldest Oliver boy, and rose from his seat. "Micah Jason Oliver, may I speak to you for a moment."
Micah cast his eyes to the floor as he followed his uncle out of the kitchen.
"Micah's in trouble! Micah's in trouble!" Devon chorused cheerfully, his mouth full of pancake. "That's enough, Devon," Emandia said humoredly, turning on the kitchen television, "Now, let's finish breakfast and watch television." Micah ignored his little brother's merciless taunting, and took a seat on the living room couch beside his uncle. He carefully kept his chocolate gaze inclined to the floor beneath him.
"What's gotten into you today?" David asked gently, "You know better than to talk so freely about your parent's role as Power Rangers. Devon doesn't know about them yet."
"I know," Micah whispered.
"Now, when did Tom and Kat tell you about their secret?"
Micah sighed. "Because they thought I was responsible enough to keep the secret, and mature enough to accept it."
David nodded. "Are you trying to prove them wrong?"
Micah remained silent, folding his hands tightly in his lap. "No, Uncle David, it's just that--"
Suddenly, Emandia hurried into the living room, panic widening her deep brown eyes. David rose to his feet.
"What's wrong?" he asked.
"It's on the news," Emandia said faintly, "Th.. the Power Rangers are... dead!"
"What?" David demanded, walking past his wife to the kitchen. He stood at the entrance to the kitchen, where Devon was seated at the table, his huge eyes focused on the television screen with rapt attention.
"...and the wreckage is being searched as we speak, so we can find out the cause of this terrible tragedy," said the anchorwoman, "To repeat, the Terran Power Rangers' robot, the Terra Megazord, has been destroyed by a mysterious and unexplained explosion. The Power Rangers are presumed dead."
"Oh my God," David muttered quietly, leaning against the wall weakly.
"Wow," Devon said numbly, "I thought the Power Rangers were robots or something."
Micah remained seated on the couch. He couldn't even muster the strength to rise to his feet. "No," he whispered hoarsely, his fists balled tightly and rivers of rage pouring from his dark eyes, "No. No! NO!!"
Scene: Angel Grove California; March 2025; 7:00 a.m. (Western Time)
A woman dressed in a black business suit busily brushed her short sandy blonde hair. She glanced at the clock beside her bed, and frowned.
"I'm going to be late," she lamented, rolling her twilight blue eyes, "There's a faculty meeting at seven-thirty, and I still have to finish grading a few quizzes before second period!"
After stepping into her pumps, she grabbed a pair of earrings, and snapped them on as she walked out her bedroom door. She hurried into the kitchen, and hastily grabbed a banana from the fruit bowl on the table.
"Mom!" came a cry from behind. Emily Lee turned around, and fixed her gaze on her daughter. The latter was dressed in her canary yellow bathrobe, and her short, dark brown hair was dripping from her morning shower.
"Good morning, Brittany," Emily greeted, kissing her daughter on the cheek. Brittany shook her head, and gave her mother a wry smile.
"You always tell me to make sure I have a balanced breakfast in the morning," Brittany chided, "And look at you!"
Emily laughed. "Your notion of a quick breakfast is a can of Diet Coke! At least there are vitamins in a banana!"
Brittany giggled, and turned on the coffee maker. "Where's Dad, anyway?" she asked, searching through the cupboard for a coffee mug, "Is he already at the station?"
"I doubt it," Emily sighed, "He and the other Rangers went on a mission last night. I haven't heard from him."
"What's the great emergency this time?"
"A meteor heading for Earth," Emily responded, grabbing her purse, "It's probably on the news."
"Might as well check," Brittany said, turning on the television. She quickly turned it to CNN.
"... and there is no trace of the Terran Power Rangers," the commentator stated, "The Megazord has been reportedly reduced to cinders, and the Rangers did not contact the UN building, as they usually do when a mission is complete. The Rangers are therefore presumed dead."
Brittany's large blue eyes were wide, and her hand flew to her mouth. Emily stopped short, her hand on the front doorknob. She dropped the banana and her purse, and sank to her knees.
Ever since Emily first learned her husband Jason Scott Lee was a Power Ranger, she dreaded this day. He was always hungry for adventure and danger, and Emily knew that some day, whether as the Black Terran Ranger or the captain of the Angel Grove Police Force, he'd be critically injured... or even killed. She tried to prepare herself for this moment, since she knew it would happen eventually. After all, one man can only cheat death for so long. But no matter how much she tried to prepare herself, she couldn't fathom living out the rest of her life without him.
"It's a lie!" Brittany growled angrily, "It takes more than an asteroid to kill the Power Rangers! Dad's fine... and so are the others!"
Brittany's voice was uncertain, and she closed her eyes tightly, forcing back tears. She stood still, not moving from her position in front of the television. Emily glanced at her oldest child, tightly clenching her sandy blonde bangs.
"Brittany?" she whispered, her voice cracking.
Brittany didn't respond.
Scene: Bay City, Texas; March 2025; 9:00 a.m. (Central Time)
"NO!!" screamed a teenage girl, her head leaping from her pillow. She buried her tear-stricken face in her powder blue bed sheets, her dark hair cascading around her face. She shook violently and wept in silence, until her mother... a serene, beautiful Asian in a yellow nightgown... entered the room.
"Becky?" she said, sitting down beside the sobbing girl, "What did you see?"
Rebecca Mitchell looked up at her mother, her almond shaped mahogany eyes pulsing with an unnatural blue light. Rebecca then forced her eyes shut, and buried herself into her mother's shoulder.
"I... I saw the Power Rangers," he sobbed, "screaming in pain. They... they were trapped, and surrounded by fire, and explosions, and... and... darkness..."
Trini looked alarmed, but she continued stroking her daughter's hair gently. "Honey, it was only a dream."
"It's never only a dream!" Rebecca shrieked, pulling away and staring up at her mother, "Is it? Ever since I was twelve, the visions I see are real! They're real!"
Trini sighed, and once again collected her oldest child in her arms. It was certainly a challenge raising a girl like Rebecca, one that was gifted with mutant powers. Rebecca was a empath, who was especially good at sensing the pain and anxiety of others. This constant exposure to painful emotions had often brought the fifteen year old girl into depression. After spending over a year learning about her mutant powers at the Charles Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters in New York, Rebecca came home happy and cheerful again. But now, it was the cries of her family's friends that tore through her sensitive mind, and it threw the child into a fit of sobs.
Trini held her daughter close, doing her best not to cry herself. She knew from experience that her daughter's "visions" were always true. And hearing that her dear friends since high school may have perished wasn't something easy. But, Trini's first duty was as a mother, and she had to help her daughter cope with her sorrow before she can focus on her own.
After a full five minutes of weeping, Rebecca rose her head, and wiped the tears staining her red cheeks. She looked up at her mother's pained onyx eyes.
"Where's Daddy?" she asked. Trini sighed.
"The CAC," she said, standing up, "He went to monitor the Ranger's activity as soon as they were dispatched." Trini paused for a moment, a thoughtful expression on her face. "Get dressed, Becky. We're teleporting immediately."
Scene: JF Kennedy Airport, New York; March 2025; 12:00 pm EST
"Daddy," said a short, slender young girl, her huge aqua eyes shining with tears, "When will Tony be here?"
The middle-aged man glanced down from the window, and made eye contact with those pained pools of color. They were the perfect mirror of his own.
"Any minute now, Kirsten," he said, "Any minute now."
Kirsten nodded, and continued to stare out of the window of the airport, watching as numerous planes flew in and out. She remained silent, leaving her father to his thoughts.
Trevor Monroe has had a life filled with both infinite joy and grievous sorrow. As a young man, he attended the University of Florida, and worked with Coach Gunther Schmidt in the preparation of some of the world's finest athletes. That was when he met an energetic, beautiful, funny young woman with enough inherent joy to bring a smile to the most despondent individuals on the planet. She was Kimberly Anne Hart, one of America's best chances of winning the gold in the 1997 Pan-Global Games. Trevor fell for her almost immediately after meeting her, and seeing her jubilance in action. However, he never made a move, since he could easily discern that she had a love, back home in California. After all, Kimberly had always raved about what a wonderful, caring, understanding boyfriend she had, and Trevor found it very clear that he could never compare with this slice of human perfection. So he kept his feelings hidden from Kimberly. But everyone else saw through Trevor's attempted cover. In fact, Kimberly's roommate Renee Ryan often pestered him about his love for Kimberly, deeming it unhealthy to be so caught up with a person that could never be his. Unfortunately, logic failed where the heart prevailed. It was simply hopeless.
When Trevor learned that Kimberly returned to Angel Grove permanently, he tried to forget about her charming smile and enthralling laugh. But, he didn't have much success getting over her, and when she finally returned to Florida in June, he was more excited to see her than he ever was. But it wasn't long before Kimberly changed. She was suddenly chronically sad, and angry at the world.
As it turned out, the reason why is because she had a quarrel with her long time boyfriend, and it didn't end well. Trevor tried to be there for Kimberly, but it wasn't his place to interfere. Eventually, Kimberly found her smile again, and enjoyed spending time with Trevor. One starry evening in August, Trevor admitted to Kimberly for the first time what he felt for her almost since day one. And from then on, they were an inseparable couple. The following morning, Kimberly broke the final cord tying her and her former boyfriend together. Both Trevor and Kimberly found happiness, and their love managed to survive Trevor's post-graduate education at Harvard University, as well as Kimberly's schooling in France. Once their careers were settled, they married, and lived happily ever after. Or so they thought.
One evening, in the month of February in 2009, Trevor was lounging alone in his and Kimberly's bedroom, going over some information for an important case the following morning. While he read, he barely noticed a strange, surreal golden light, emanating from Kimberly's walk-in closet. Trevor investigated the phenomenon, and was sucked through a magic portal, leading to a strange, dark place, devoid of gravity, and filled with multi-colored flashes of light. While he was there, he felt his body slip away into oblivion, but it was saved at the last minute. It was saved by a non-corporeal being called Onslaught.
Trevor had no memories of the following years. He had no idea just how many years had passed. But during this time, Trevor played host body for the villain Onslaught, forming the Multiversal tyrant Solar. As Solar, Trevor managed to nearly kill the Power Rangers, as well as super heroes from alternate dimensions, namely the Spectrum Force and the Sailor Scouts. He was finally saved in the year 1997, by his wife Kimberly and a team of younger Power Rangers. It was then that Trevor learned his wife has been a Power Ranger since high school.
Once Trevor returned, everything returned to normal. Trevor and Kimberly were happier than ever, and Trevor watched proudly as his son Anthony grew into a young man. About two years after his return, he and Kimberly had their second child, named Kirsten Monroe. Kirsten had her mother's delicate features, and her father's magnificent, endearing aqua-blue eyes. They lived as a happy family, and Trevor smiled as time passed, and his children grew up. Trevor didn't even mind the fact that he was technically growing old alone, since his wife, being protected by the Power, didn't show the signs of aging typical of a woman of forty-plus years. Trevor was happy, and satisfied with his life. But, that would all come crashing down, this chilly March morning.
When Trevor heard the news of the Power Rangers' deaths, he immediately called the airport, and asked his private pilot to fly the family airplane to pick up Anthony from Harvard. He then quietly entered Kirsten's room, and told his angelic daughter, as gently as he could, about her beloved mother's untimely death. Kirsten burst into tears right then and there, but Trevor was glad to see her cry. Trevor knows how much his children loved their mother. Only he could love her more.
"Uh, excuse me, Mister Monroe?" asked an attendant, tapping his shoulder, "I was sent to tell you that your plane is arriving. Follow me, and I'll take you two down to the landing site."
Trevor nodded mutely, and took the hand of his youngest child. Together, they walked through the terminal, and down onto the paved runway. Trevor glanced up at the sky, and saw the small white plane descend. Kimberly had wanted to purchase a plane, so the family could go on vacations together. She even attended flight school, and earned her license unbelievably fast. She flew a plane as if she were flying it for years. Once Trevor learned of Kimberly's time as a Power Ranger, he finally understood his wife's amazing skills at flying planes, as well as riding motorcycles. Kimberly bought the plane herself, and nicknamed it "Thunder." Trevor never had the desire to pursue a pilot's license of his own, so he hired a pilot for when he needed to use the plane. This was one of those times.
The plane landed on the runway, and pulled up to where the people were waiting. The door lowered, and a young man descended the stairs, with his head bowed down, and a duffel bag flung over his shoulder. He didn't look up until he was standing right in front of his father. He looked up, and the two men of equal height looked at each other for a moment. Then, they embraced, without saying a word. Their matching, expressive eyes said all that was worth saying.
Once they broke, Anthony hugged his little sister. Kirsten, who was eleven years old, was less than five feet tall, so the young man had to bend down. Then, the family walked away from the airport, towards the street, where a black limousine was awaiting them. A rather stout man with a mustache and a suit opened the back door for the family, and then closed it behind them and took a seat in the front.
"Home, Miles," said Trevor, "Please."
Miles nodded, and the car pulled away from the city, headed for the suburbs. Anthony pressed a single button on the door, and a smoky glass screen came up, separating the driver from the passengers, and allowing them to speak freely.
"What happened, Dad?" asked Anthony.
"I really don't know," said Trevor, "Late last night, at about eleven, your mother's communicator went off. I was with her, and I heard Will Mitchell say that there was a dangerously large meteor heading towards Earth. It wasn't large enough to destroy the planet or anything, but it would've separated in the atmosphere, raining down a shower of meteorites. So, to prevent any damage to either people or property, the Power Rangers boarded the Megazord, and flew off. It wasn't a particularly dangerous mission. That's why this is so surprising. The Megazord managed to take the heat of the Sun, and the magical attacks of villains for years, but it couldn't take its own energy? That doesn't sit well with me."
"What are the reporters saying?" asked Anthony.
"The Megazord has been reduced to ash, practically. The pieces that were substantial fell towards Earth, and disintegrated in the upper atmosphere. They aren't even looking anymore. There's nothing to find."
Soon, the limousine pulled up at the grand mansion which had been the home of the Monroe family for nearly twenty years. The family stepped out of the car, and Trevor knocked once at the door. The aged housekeeper opened the door, and smiled up at the family.
"Senor," she said, "you had a telephone call, from a mister William Mitchell. He said to come visit him at your convenience."
"Thanks," said Trevor, as he ascended the stairs, followed closely by his children, " Take the rest of the day off, Anita. We'll be leaving momentarily, and we won't be back for awhile."
Anita nodded, and watched at the family disappeared into the master bedroom. Anthony and Kirsten watched as their father rummaged through Kimberly's rather large jewelry box. Inside were all kinds of gold, silver, and precious gems, but one thing stood out. It was a shiny yellow and silver watch, but instead of a watch, there was a microphone on the top, with several buttons. Anthony looked at the device, surprised.
"Mom had an extra communicator?"
"Not really," said Trevor, strapping it onto his wrist, "This is the older communicator she used when she was a Power Ranger in the 1990's. When the team was reinstated in 2006, Will made a whole new set of more advanced communicators. The old ones still work, though, and all the Rangers kept them in case of emergency. Will, do you read?"
"Hello?" came a soft voice, "Trevor, is that you?"
"Trini! What's going on? Anita said Will left a message?"
"Yes. We've been trying to contact the families of all the Rangers. At least, the family members who knew they were Rangers. We have some information that you really should hear. Do you have Anthony with you?"
"Yes, and Kirsten as well."
"Good. We're regrouping as many as possible here. Teleporting now."
With that, Trevor, Kirsten, and Anthony vanished in streaks of white light.