"So Tim, what did you think of your first day at Angel Grove High?" Tommy asked.
"It was nice. The teachers and students went out of there way to make me feel at home. So where are we going now?" Tim said.
"The Youth Center. I have a karate class that I teach. Kim and the others will be there as well."
"Okay, sounds good." Tim said.
When the two reached the Youth Center, Kim was already there practicing her gymnastics routine. Aisha and Adam were going over some homework. Rocky was trying to pummel a punching bag into submission. Tommy looked around. "Where's Billy?"
"He's with Kat. They should be here soon." Adam told him.
"Okay. Hey Tim, while we're waiting for my class to arrive are you interested in doing some sparring? Your Dad mentioned to my Dad that you have a black belt and even attended a Ninja camp." Tommy asked.
"Oh God, did he have to mention that ? All right, Tommy I'll do it." Tim said.
"Great, let's get changed first."
They both then went to the locker room.
Rocky came over after the two had left. "You think that guy's got a chance against Tommy?"
Adam and Aisha looked at each other. "I doubt it." Aisha said. Adam just shrugged.
Tommy and Tim came out of the locker room and went over to the mats. Kim saw Tommy getting ready to spar so she jumped off the balance beam and went over to the others. She had just sat down when the two started.
Tommy decided to start slow and then speed up. It wouldn't be nice to humiliate Tim right off the bat. Besides, if he beat him to quick Kim might get angry with him.
Tim realized that he needed to let Tommy set the tone of the fight. After all, he was sparring a high-school student not fighting the Kingsnake or the Joker. If he went full effort, he might hurt Tommy. Just because Tommy said he taught Karate didn't mean he was a great fighter.
Tommy saw that Tim was blocking his half-speed attacks so he decided to take it up a notch. But that was being blocked just as easily as his half-speed attacks. So he went to full speed. And they were blocked or dodged just as if he was still throwing the slower punches and kicks.
Tim saw that Tommy had some skill as a fighter. But he wasn't as fast as some of the people Tim had fought. And Tim had found that speed was of more importance than strength. After all, if you can't hit the person you're fighting it's a little harder to beat them.
"Aren't you going to fight back?" Tommy asked.
Tim didn't answer. He waited until he was sure that he had analyzed the pattern that Tommy used. Then he went on the offensive.
Billy came in with Kat a few minutes after the fight ended. Billy and Kat were sitting and talking with Adam, Rocky and Aisha. "So let me see if I get this straight. The reason Tommy, Tim and Kim aren't here is because Tim accidentally broke Tommy's nose?"
"Well... yeah." Adam said.
Rocky was still laughing and gasping out, "One kick. One kick."
"Please tell me someone taped it." Billy said.
"Sorry, man. It was pretty funny though. Tommy had just asked him if he was going to fight back when Tim slipped a real brutal kick past Tommy's defenses. Tommy went down grabbing his nose as he fell back. I've never seen someone's eyes get so big. Ernie told Kim to drive Tommy to the Emergency room. Tim went with them." Rocky told him after regaining control.
"I hope he's all right." Kat said.
"Don't worry, Kat. Tommy will be fine. It wasn't a bad break. It just gave him more... character." Aisha assured her.
Tommy looked over at Kim. "Quit giggling. It isn't funny, Kim. This hurts."
"I'm sorry, Tommy. I just can't help it. `Aren't you going to fight back?' I can't wait to tell Jason about this." Kim said.
"So I underestimated, Tim. I won't do that again."
"Are you going to spar some more with him?" Kim asked.
"Only if he wants to. He's better than the he lets on, Kim." Tommy said.
"Oh? How much better?"
"He's better than me. I don't know who taught him but he knows more than just karate. A lot more. Then there was the thing he did to stop my bleeding. You don't learn that at the YMCA."
"What are you saying, Tommy?" Kim asked.
"There's more to him than meets the eye. We better find out what that is before it's too late." Tommy said.
Lord Zedd was bored. A more frightening turn of phrase could not be envisioned. He had seen Tommy lose to this Tim Drake. So he decided to send a murder of tengas and Goldar down to capture him. Or at least draw out the Rangers.
If Drake was able to be captured then he would make a fine addition to the cadre of warriors that Lynx was preparing for him. And if he couldn't be captured then the fight should be entertainment enough.
Zedd was pleased. Either way, he won.
Tim was enjoying Angel Grove Park. The playground he was by was empty of kids so he was sitting on the swings. He found the quiet to be relaxing.
Tim knew he that he should have let Tommy win. By the reactions of the people in the Youth Center what he had done was pretty close to the Riddler beating Superman in a slap fight. Now, they would remember him as the person who beat the local champion.
Tim finally started to figure out why Batman kept his appearances as Bruce Wayne to a minimum. It wasn't that Bruce Wayne was an identity he didn't want. It was that Batman hated to be thought of as weak, regardless of the face he was wearing.
Tim leapt out of the swing when he saw the crow-like humanoids and the simian in gold armor teleport in front of him. He used his momentum to catch the closest crow in the chest and then while kicking forward, leaped back using the crow as a springboard. Tim then landed on the crossbar of the swingset.
Catching his balance, he waited for the others to make the first move. He didn't have long to wait.
"Ai-yi-yi! Zordon, Goldar and a murder of tengas are in the park attacking someone!" Alpha-5 cried out.
"ALPHA, ALERT THE RANGERS AND TELL THEM TO APPEAR MORPHED AT THE PARK." Zordon said.
Goldar looked at the kid who had knocked out one of his tenga warriors and was now perched on the swing. The move had required skill and confidence. Goldar knew that no matter what Lord Zedd thought, this would be no easy conquest.
"Attack! But he must be taken alive." Goldar growled out.
The tengas took to the air around Tim. Before they could surround him, Tim turned and ran the length of the crossbar and then jumped off it towards the nearby slide. Reaching the top of the slide, he ducked the first tenga and then kicked the second under it the chin. Tim then jumped back to the ground.
Tim then ran to the monkey bars. Quickly scaling them, he reached the top and then waited for the tengas to come to him. The first one that came near he wheel kicked. When the second one pulled from out of it's dive at him, Tim dropped between the bars and then stopped himself from hitting the ground.
He then kicked the nearest tenga in the face through the bars. Tim then tucked his legs together, and kicked straight up, catching another tenga in the groin. Tim was then at the top of the bars in a handstand. He kept the handstand for two seconds and then dropped off the monkey bars.
Goldar started to attack. Tim moved over by the parallel bars and baited Goldar into swinging at him. Goldar cut one of the top bars off it's holder. Tim then picked up the makeshift staff.
"Stay still, boy! This won't hurt for long." Goldar growled.
Tim didn't answer. He knew that he didn't have a talent for saying witty things in a fight. He usually thought about them after the fight was over. So he just let his staff do the talking for him.
Goldar found out that it had some fairly persuasive arguments.
After Tommy had contacted the others to meet him in the park, he and Kim had morphed into their Ninja uniforms and teleported to the park. There, they saw Tim Drake beating Goldar with a metal staff and several tenga lying on the ground.
Tommy was impressed with what he saw. If Tim had the skill to do this to Goldar and some tengas then he had gotten off easy with a bloody nose. But Tommy knew that he couldn't stand around waiting for Tim to beat Goldar for him. Tim wasn't wearing armor and Goldar would cheat.
Kim started on the tengas before they could realize she was there. She had taken out two of them before they figured out that someone was attacking them. By that time, Tommy was helping her.
Tommy and Kim had fought off seven of the tengas when the other Ninja Rangers teleported in. With the arrival of the other Rangers, the tengas realized they had no chance of winning. Especially since Goldar was still being beaten by a kid with a metal pole. So they teleported out.
Goldar was trying to teleport out. He just couldn't concentrate long enough to do so. Everytime he stopped fighting, the staff would hit him in the head. It was almost a relief when the other Rangers arrived. They would distract the kid long enough for him to escape.
Tommy and Kim ran forward and put themselves between Goldar and Tim. Goldar used the breather that gave him to escape. Tim then turned to the White and Pink Ninja Rangers. "You let him get away. I could have had him and you let him get away. Why?"
"We did not let him do anything! We were protecting you!" Tommy said.
"You must not have noticed that I was winning that fight. Why did you interfere?" Tim asked.
"We are here to protect the Earth. Besides, Goldar would have eventually cheated and you would have lost." Tommy told him.
"Perhaps I would have won even if he had cheated." Tim said.
"It's a moot point. Goldar and the tengas are gone. Both of you put a leash on your testosterone. Were you injured in the attack, young man?" Kim asked.
"No I wasn't. Thank you for your help, miss?" Tim said.
"I'm called the Pink Ranger." Kim told him.
"Pink Ranger, thank you. I have to go. The family I'm staying with is probably worried that I'm gone." Tim then walked away from the Rangers.
After he was out of earshot, Rocky looked at the others. "Did you see that? He took on Goldar and those tengas with a metal pole and he was winning!"
"Yes, Rocky we saw that. He's pretty good. Much better than he says he is." Adam said.
"We better keep an eye on him. He's attracted Lord Zedd's attention." Billy said.
"You're right, Billy. We do need to make sure Zedd doesn't capture him to use against us." Tommy said. He then put a hand on his face.
"What's wrong, Tommy?" Kim asked.
"My nose still hurts and this mask isn't helping." Tommy said.
"So let me get this straight, Goldar. A murder of tengas and yourself could not capture a boy who doesn't have a Power. Is this correct?" Zedd asked.
"Yes, my lord." Goldar replied.
"Interesting." Zedd then turned to the others gathered in his throne room. "Scorpina, you will disguise yourself as a high school student and introduce yourself to this Tim Drake. Find out how he grew so skilled at combat."
"Anything else, Lord Zedd?" Scorpina asked.
"Yes... The one known as Adam. Seduce him. Bring him to odds with the others." Zedd told her.
"By your command, Lord Zedd." Scorpina then bowed and teleported out.
"Goldar, go to this Lynx and find out how soon she will have her warriors ready for the procedure. Rito, go with him. Do not say anything just observe. Then report on how Lynx acts. Tell me if you suspect her of double-dealing. Go."
Rito and Goldar then left the throne room. Rita walked to the side of her husband. "If you can not trust this Lynx, then why deal with her?"
"Rita, I trust no one. Not even you." Zedd told her.
Tim walked into the Oliver household and was met by Tommy. "Hey, Tommy. I'm sorry about the nose. Sometimes I forget my speed."
"I understand. Besides, that thing you did with your hand stopped the bleeding. Tim, can I ask you a question?"
"Where did you learn to do that healing thing?"
"I spent a few weeks learning the healing arts of a Tibetan master in Paris." Tim said.
"You've been to Paris? What was it like?" Tommy asked.
"Well, the Rahul Lama, that was the master, didn't live in a nice part of town. If Paris is the City of Lights, then the part I was in forgot to pay the electric bill." Tim told him.
"Maybe you can show me some of that healing stuff sometime."
"I'll think about it, Tommy. I'm kind of tired. I'm going to get some sleep. Good night."
"Good night, Tim." Tommy watched Tim go into the guest bedroom.
Tim shut the door and then locked it. Picking up one of his suitcases, Tim opened it and started to take out his Robin costume. He then put it on and left the room through the window. He then started to make his way to where Alfred had had Wayne Industries drop off the Redbird.
After getting into the car, Robin then made his way to the seedier side of Angel Grove.