Disclaimer: You know the drill. The characters that aren't mine are Saban's and the characters that aren't Saban's are mine. This is the sequel to 'Silver and Gold,' so if you haven't read that, I suggest you do, otherwise, you are likely to be confused. It takes place about six months later. Thanks go out to Naomi Tilley and Michelle Penning (sorry if anyone's name is spelled wrong) for their imput and suggestions and thanks to my friend Rachel K. for giving me the little surprise ending. Send any comments, suggestion, etc to Whitekat@hotmail.com
"Your time is at an end Zordon!" Kat sneered, looking up at her mentor with a triumphant gleam in her eyes. "Say goodbye!"
"Katherine," Zordon said, a slight edge to his deep, booming voice, "Do not do this. I can feel another's hold over you. Let me help. You must not do this."
"Oh? And who's going to stop me? The others are completely clueless as to mine and my sister's plans." She looked around at the ransacked Power Chamber and gestured to Alpha, who lay in a corner, out of commission. "Alpha never knew what hit him, so count him out." Her gaze wandered a few feet to her right, where Billy lay, unconscious. "And Billy won't remember a thing when he comes to, thanks to my special little powers." She smiled chillingly as she looked back at him. "See my point? There's no one who can stop me and no one who can help you. Oh, and don't worry about the others. If I can't have their lives spared, I'll make sure their deaths are as quick and painless as possible."
Her eyes moved downward and lighted on a single button. "Lights out Zordon," she purred, reaching out for the button.
"No!" Kat shrieked and sat bolt upright in bed, breathing heavily as she looked around the room. "Not again," she moaned, flopping back down and covering her face with her hands. She looked over at her nightstand and squinted at the little clock. Ten after one. Her eyes then fell on her communicator.
'Hmm, maybe I should talk with Zordon. This has gone on long enough!' She climbed out of bed, threw some clothes on over her pajamas, grabbed her communicator, and teleported out.
She arrived to an eerily silent Power Chamber. Alpha stood in the little space by Zordon's tube, recharging. Looking up, she saw the blushish tube was empty.
"Hello?" she called out softly, "Zordon? Can you hear me?"
Kat jumped and spun around to find Billy.
"Billy!" she exclaimed. "You startled me. What are you doing here? It's after one in the morning."
"Just putting the finishing touches on an upgrade. How 'bout you? What are you doing up and about at this hour?"
"I needed to talk to Zordon."
There was a sudden flash of light, followed by Zordon's booming voice. "Billy, Katherine, what are you two doing here at this late hour? You should be at home, sleeping."
"Easier said than done," Kat muttered, earning curious looks from both Billy and Zordon.
"Katherine, is something wrong?"
Kat sighed, then launched into describing the dream that had been plaguing her for nearly two weeks. "I always wake up right before I push that button," she finished.
"Hmm. Zordon, could these dreams be the result of guilty feelings released by the events of Kamara's visit?" Billy asked. "Maybe the feelings of what could have happened if Rita's spell hadn't been broken?"
"An excellent hypothesis Billy," Zordon agreed.
"Yeah, I guess," Kat said doubtfully. "But that doesn't explain the part about my sister. I don't have a sister."
Billy shrugged. You got me there."
"Katherine, the hour is late. I suggest you return home and get some rest. If you wish, we can try to determine some meaning to your dream tomorrow." Kat nodded, too tired to argue. "Billy, I suggest that you also go home for rest." Billy nodded, catching the 'Do not argue' tone in his mentor's voice. After saying their goodnights, the pair teleported out in flashed of white and pink light.
* * *
"Hey guys, does Kat look a little worn out to you?" Tanya asked as she and the others watched Kat teach her Ballet class. Rocky snorted. "A little worn out? Hell, she looks downright exhausted!"
"I talked to Billy this morning," Jason said. "According to him, Kat's been having the same freaky dream every night for the past two weeks."
"How's he know that?" Tommy asked, his eyes never leaving Kat.
"Well, apparently she showed up in the Power Chamber last night to talk to Zordon. Billy was still around, so he found out what was happening. Wouldn't tell me what it was about, though. He thought it would be better if we heard it from Kat herself."
"Heard what from me?" Kat asked as she appeared at their table and sat down.
"What those dreams that are keeping you awake at night are all about," Tommy said with a hint of authority that seemed to dare her to deny it.
"Oh, Billy told you about that, huh?"
"Just that you were having dreams," Jason repeated, "He didn't tell me what they were about." They all looked at her expectantly, and Kat realized they'd have to find out sooner or later.
"Okay, okay." She took a deep breath and let it out, then quickly told them what she had told Billy and Zordon the night before. They were all silent for a moment when she finished, and then Tommy reached over and took her hand in his.
"Hey," he said softly, "I know how you feel. I had nightmares for a solid month after Rita's spell was broken. I had trouble letting go of the guilty feelings from what I had done under her control."
"Yeah, and as I recall, those were some strong feelings. It took us nearly two months to convince him to let go of those feelings and move on," Jason said, lightly punching his best friend in the arm.
Tommy smiled and added, "Once I let go of my guilty feelings, the dreams went away."
Kat sighed. "That's pretty much what Billy and Zordon said. But that still doesn't explain that part about my sister. I'm going to see Zordon a little later and take him up on his offer."
"I'll go with you if you want," Tommy offered.
Kat smiled. "Thanks, I could use the moral support."
"You know," Rocky spoke up, standing to leave, "maybe these dreams aren't the result of guilty feelings. Maybe it's a prophecy. We all remember what happened the last time one of us was chased around by weird dreams. I'm not saying that Kat's gonna flip out and destroy the Power Chamber or anything, but maybe we should consider this a warning and be on our guard. Maybe something big is coming." He paused, then added, "It's just a thought. Catch ya later." He left them all in stunned silence.
"That's some thought," Adam muttered softly after a moment. The others nodded in agreement.
Kat was more disturbed by Rocky's words than any of them. 'What if he's right?' she thought, 'What if my dream really is a warning? A warning that I'm going to loose control of my power, perhaps to Zedd and Rita? Oh god, if those two manage to get a hold of me' She knew she should go to Zordon, but something inside seemed to urge her to go clear her head first.
"Guys, I'm going to clear my head. Would you meet me in the Power Chamber in about an hour?" They nodded, and she hurried from the Youth Center towards the park.
* * *
"So, the little pink traitor is having dreams about destroying the Power Chamber huh?" Rita mused as she looked through her telescope. "Zeddie, what do you say we make her dreams come true?" she added, smiling wickedly as she turned to the evil lord.
"Leave her be." Rita's smile faded as both turned toward the source of the voice. Zara stood behind them, a cold look in her ice blue eyes.
"And why should we do that?" Zedd asked his niece.
"Because, dear uncle," Zara said, walking up and watching Kat with her own powerful eyesight, "The dreams are a signal. The power that is still locked away deep within her is ready to come out. She'll join us soon enough. But it is to be done my way." Her eyes narrowed suddenly as she watched Kat walking through the park. 'It's time,' she thought, 'It's finally time.' She turned back to them and said, "Please uncle, auntie, trust me on this one. I promise you won't be disappointed." She disappeared in a flash of black flame before either of them could respond. "Kids," Zedd muttered.
* * *
Katherine jumped, startled, as the black cat suddenly appeared in front of her. She smiled and shook her head. "Hey there," she said softly, kneeling down and gently stroking the cat's soft, black fur, "Where'd you come from?" It looked up at her and their eyes met. Katherine was startled by the intense look of intelligence in the animal's yellow eyes. Alarms went off in her mind as the cat trotted a few feet away, turned back and stared at her. Her mind screamed an order to get to the Power Chamber and to safety, but something within prevented the order from being carried out.
She stood slowly, mesmerized as the cat began to shimmer and change form. Her heart jumped to her throat and her eye widened in shock when, seconds later, she saw the result of the transformation.
"No," she whispered, taking a step back, "It can't be." Zara smiled.
Snapping out of her shock, Kat fell into a defensive stance and said, "This is impossible. You're dead. I saw Kara destroy you."
Zara's smile widened. "Cat's have nine lives, remember?" she said simply. She began to move forward, and Kat quickly summoned an energy ball.
"Stay back!" she snapped threateningly.
Zara stopped and said softly, "Katherine, I'm not here to harm you. I'm here because we need to talk. I have information that you need to know."
"So talk," Kat replied suspiciously.
"Not here." Zara shook her head and Kat was surprised to see a look of urgency flash though the other girl's chilling eyes. "What I have to tell you will take awhile and it will come as a shock. We must go somewhere private, where we will not be interrupted. I give you my word of honor that you are in no danger. This is not a ploy for your capture."
"Nice try, Zara," Kat retorted, "We both know what Zedd and the wicked witch would do if they got their hands on me."
Zara sighed. "Very well. Kat, I want to tell you right now that I'm sorry." Moving faster than Kat could follow, Zara swiped the side of Kat's cheek. The sudden movement and the intense pain that followed caused Kat to stumble back, releasing the energy she had been holding. It flew past Zara and collided with a tree as Kat's hand flew to her cheek. She could feel blood oozing from the wound. A wave of dizziness crashed over her and she fell to her knees, her vision fading in and out of focus.
'Got to get to the Power Chamber,' she thought, but Zara's grip on her arm prevented her from pushing the teleportation button on her communicator. As if from far away, she heard Zara's voice say, "You'll understand why I had to do this soon." Then her world vanished. Zara bent over Kat's still form and gently pressed her hand to the scratches on the other girl's cheek, healing them. Glancing around, she placed her hand on Kat's shoulder and the pair vanished.
Their departure did not go unnoticed.
* * *
Kat awoke to strange surroundings and had to force back her rising panic as the memory of her encounter in the park returned. 'It's all right,' she told herself, 'You're not exactly helpless, remember.' She brought her communicator to her lips and said, "Zordon, this is Kat. Do you read me? Zordon? Billy?"
"Sorry Hon, that doesn't work here."
Kat looked up sharply to find Zara standing in front of her. A low growl escaped her throat as she began to summon an energy ball. Surprise flashed thought her eyes when nothing came.
"Relax. I put it into temporary submission with the potion I used to knock you out. It will return in a little while."
Kat took a step back, refusing to show the fear flooding through her heart and said fiercely, "I'm not going to let Zedd and Rita take control of me Zara! I'll kill myself before I let them control me again!"
Zara sighed and said, "Kat, I told you in the park that you were in no danger. Zedd and Rita don't even know we're here. I don't want to fight, I just want to talk. I need to tell you about the origin of your powers, and who you really are."
Something in the girl's eyes told Kat that she was telling the truth. Remaining on her guard, Kat nodded and said, "All right, talk."
"Well, for starters, I can tell you why you've been having those haunting dreams night after night these past few weeks, and why, at times, you wake up with an irrational urge to cause destruction and pain."
A shocked look entered Kat's eyes. She hadn't told anybody about the almost irresistible urge to cause chaos and destruction she sometimes got upon awakening from one of those dreams. "How...how did you know about that?" she whispered. "I never told anyone about that."
"I felt it. These dreams,they're a signal. Not only to you, but also to me. The rest of your power is ready to emerge."
"Why would it be signaling to you?"
"Because Kat," Zara said softly, "I'm your sister."
Kat's expression turned from one of confusion to one of pure shock at Zara's words. "But, that's impossible," she whispered, "I'm an only child and your sister, your twin sister, died thousands of years before I was born."
Zara shook her head. "No Kat, her body died, but her spirit survived. I was devastated when she died. I loved her more than anything. But I was comforted by the instinct that we would someday be reunited. I didn't understand until the day we fought in the park, when you proved immune to my power. As I understand it, for centuries her spirit wandered, sleeping in one body after another, occasionally becoming active to cause some mischief or something. Just a few days before you were born, her spirit entered your mother's body and passed into you, where she retreated deep into your soul. I don't why she chose to remain dormant. I guess she was waiting for me."
She paused, and upon seeing the look of disbelief in Kat's eyes, added, "How do you explain that you knew all about me and my past? It was like someone was whispering the information to you from somewhere deep down, wasn't it?"
Kat nodded silently.
"She's also what drew Rita to you," Zara continued, "She sensed what was in you and used it."
Kat remained silent for several minutes after Zara stopped talking, unable to get around her shock. "No," she finally whispered, "It can't be true. I'm not evil." Her eyes suddenly widened, and she clutched her stomach, letting out a gasp of pain.
"The rest of your power is trying to rejoin what is already on the surface. It can't do it on it's own, but it will try and the process will be very painful unless I help," Zara said. She held out her hand and added, "Take my hand and all will be well once more."
Kat fell to her knees, squeezing her eyes shut tight against the pain. "No!" she gasped out, "You tried to kill Tommy, you messed with my friends. I won't turn against my friends and..and hurt them like that! I'm not evil!"
"You don't have to do what you don't want to. No one said you had to hurt your friends. Just take my hand and end your pain. Please Kat, all I want is to be united as sisters once again."
Kat looked up, her vision blurred by the tears that were falling.
There was something in the other girl's normally cold, ice blue eyes; love and warmth. Finally, she could stand the pain no longer. She reached out and, as their hand gripped one another, one thought crossed her mind; 'God forgive me.' Then her vision went black.
* * *
"Are you sure it was Zara, Tanya?" Rocky asked, taking his eyes off the searching computer and looking at Tanya.
"Positive," Tanya replied. "I know what the girl looks like, and it was definitely her."
"How in the world did she survive?" Adam asked, more to himself than the others.
Jason looked over at Tommy. His friend was silent, his face expressionless. Except, Jason noticed, for his eyes, which were saying more than words ever would. "Billy, any sign of Kat yet?" he asked quietly.
Billy looked up at Jason and shook his head. "No, there's to much interference. Wherever Zara took her, she doesn't want her found yet."
Billy looked over at Tommy, an uncomfortable look entering his eyes, then looked back down at the readouts the computer was giving him. He was getting a very bad feeling that things were going to go downhill very soon.
* * *
"Your time is at an end, Zordon!" Kat sneered, looking up at her mentor with a triumphant gleam in her eyes. "Say goodbye!"
"Katherine," Zordon said, a slight edge to his voice, "Do not do this. I can feel another's hold over you. Let me help, you must not do this."
"And who's going to stop me? The others are completely clueless as to mine and my sister's plan." She looked around the ransacked Power Chamber, and gestured to Alpha, who lay in a corner, out of commission. "Alpha never knew what hit him, so count him out." Her gaze wandered a few feet to her right, where Billy lay, unconscious. "And Billy won't remember a thing when he comes to, thanks to my special little powers." She smiled chillingly as she looked back up at him. "See my point? There's no one who can stop me and no one who can help you. Oh, and don't worry about the others. If I can't get their lives spared, I'll see that their deaths are as quick and painless as possible." Her eyes moved downward and came to rest on a single, red button. "Lights out Zordon," she purred. Reaching out, her finger hovered over the button, and then she pressed it.
* * *
The first thing Kat was aware of as her eyes slowly opened, was the flood of memories. Memories of brutal, warrior training, of fierce, bloody battles for conquest. Memories of her twin sister, Zara.
"Zara," she whispered.
Zara's face swam into view above her, a concerned, anxious look in her eyes. "Kat? How do you feel?"
"A little strange," Kat replied, carefully sitting up. They looked at one another for a moment, and then, all at once, they were hugging tightly.
"I missed you so much," Zara whispered.
Kat smiled. "Same here. I missed the trouble we used to cause together." A mischievous gleam came into her eyes as she added, "We're going to have to work hard to make up for lost time."
Zara was struck by how much of her sister's old personality was showing. She had expected that, because Katalina had lived in a body of good for so long, that her personality would have been severely toned down. Not that she was complaining. It just made her next task all the more easier. "Kat, you know that in order for you to be truly free, you have to break the hold Zordon and the others have on you, and to do that, they will have to be eliminated."
"I know," Kat replied quietly. "I guess I've always known. We had some good times, but it's time I returned to where I belong. It's also time to stop fooling around and help uncle Zedd and Aunt Rita take their rightful place as rulers of that miserable little planet. But," a small, evil smile slowly worked it's way across her lips, "I want to do it my way. Slowly, with a lot of deceit."
Zara smiled. "You may look and sound different, but you haven't changed a bit. Now come on. We need to see uncle Zedd and Aunt Rita. They're going to love this little surprise.
* * *
Zedd and Rita were, in fact, more than surprised when Zara told them of the latest events. "Unbelievable," Zedd said, walking around Kat. "Who'd have thought that one of Zordon's Rangers was, in truth, one of my nieces?"
"I always knew you were a bad kitty," Rita cackled. They were even more delighted when the girls told them of their plan.
In the middle of the small celebration, Rito walked in, looking at Kat curiously. "You still here? Isn't it gonna be harder to throw the others off the scent when you suddenly show up?"
"What do you mean?" Zara asked.
"You mean ya don't know? One of the Rangers saw you two take off in the park. They disappeared into the Power Chamber hours ago and haven't been out since."
"Shit," Kat muttered. "I'd better get back and clam them down. So much for that little surprise." She muttered teleporting out.
"Damn!" Billy said softly. He slammed his fist down on the council in frustration. "This isn't working," he said, turning to the others. "Wherever Zara is keeping her, it's well blocked."
"What about the palace?" They all turned toward Tommy as he spoke. It was the first thing he'd said since hearing Tanya's story two hours earlier.
Before Billy could answer, a pink light lit up the room, and Kat suddenly appeared in the center of the chamber. Tanya was the first to get over the surprise and cried out, "Kat!" She rushed forward and enveloped her friend in a hug.
After being reassured that she was unharmed, Tommy asked, "Kat what happened? How'd you get away?"
"Was it really Zara who took you?" Rocky added, still unconvinced.
Kat nodded. "Yeah, I'm afraid it was," she replied, glancing at Tommy. She hid her amusement as a flash of hatred lit his eyes. She then hurried on with her explanation.
"I'm not entirely sure where she left me. It was dark and cold, that much I know. After I was there for a while, Zedd showed up and told me to enjoy my last few hours of freedom, 'cause my powers and I would soon be under his control. I started searching for a way our as soon as he left. I had pretty much given up when the strangest thing happened. This door of white light appeared in one of the walls. I figured I'd rather take my chances on what was on the other side than with Zedd, so I went through and ended up in the park. I teleported here and you know the rest."
Seeing that Alpha was coming toward her with a scanning device, she quickly put up a shield to prevent it from detecting any of her secrets.
"She's all clear, Zordon," he reported after running it up and down the length of her body.
Kat put on a relieved look, then said, "Guys, I just want to put this whole thing behind me. How 'bout we go to Ernie's for some smoothies?" The others looked at each other uncertainingly.
Then, with a little help from Kat, Tommy shrugged and said, "Sure, why not? We can talk about this later."
"Katherine," Zordon said, "Rita and Zedd will most likely try to capture you again. Please use extreme caution when you are out on your own."
Kat nodded, her gaze travelling to Jason. He was watching her with a strange look in his brown eyes. 'Hmm,' she thought, 'I'd better watch myself around him. He could be a problem.'
* * *
Kat nearly choked on her juice when she saw Zara, disguised as a pretty brunet, walk into the Youth Center. She watched as Zara made her way to the juice bar, sat down, and ordered something from Ernie.
"Hey, who's that?" Rocky asked when he caught sight of her.
"She must be new," Tanya said as they looked over.
"Well," Rocky said, grinning as he stood, "someone otta go over and welcome her to the neighborhood."
"Uh-oh," Adam quipped, "Romeo's on the prowl again." The others grinned and watched as Rocky went over and talked with the girl. After a few minutes, he escorted her back to the table.
"Guys, this Kayla. Kayla, these are my friends, Adam, Tanya, Tommy, Jason and Kat."
Kayla smiled as she exchanged greetings with them. 'Meet me in the park ten minutes after I leave,' Zara thought as she sat next to Kat.
Kat gave a slight nod, then turned her attention to Tanya as she said, "So Kayla, how long have you been in Angle Grove?"
"A few days. This has been the first chance I've had to get out and explore."
"Where are you from?" Tommy asked.
"Oh, I'm from a little island nobody has ever heard of. It's pretty isolated."
Jason stiffened slightly, suddenly uncomfortable. That sounded to close to what Kamara had told them when they had first met. 'Come on Jase,' he thought, 'You're getting paranoid. It's probably just a coincidence.' Looking at her, however, did little to calm his sense of uneasiness.
After a short while of getting-to-know-you talk, Kayla looked at her watch and said, "Hey listen, I'd love to stick around and get to know you guys even more, but I've got to go. It was really nice meeting you."
As she stood, Rocky quickly said, "Hey Kayla, wait a sec." When she turned back, he said, "Maybe we could go out sometime."
Kayla smiled. "Sure, I'd like that. How 'bout we meet here for lunch tomorrow?"
Rocky grinned. "Great! See you then." Kat watched her sister leave, then turned her attention back to her friends. Rocky was grinning from ear to ear, the others watching in amusement.
"Guys, I think I'm going to call it a day and go home for some rest," she said, standing to leave.
"Will you be alright?" Tommy asked, concern in his brown eyes.
Kat nodded. "Yeah, I'll be fine. Remember how much protection I have." She raised her hand, allowing a soft flicker of energy to pass by. She flashed them a smile, then quickly left the center. Jason watched her leave, a strange feeling growing in the pit of his stomach.
* * *
"Nice disguise, Zara," Kat said ten minutes later, "You certainly got Rocky's attention."
Zara laughed. "I have to admit, for a human, he is rather cute." Her expression suddenly turned serious and business like. Reaching into a hidden pocket in her uniform, she removed a small, black bag. "Here," she said, "take this."
Kat knelt and dumped the contents on the ground. "What are they?" she asked, picking up one of several, tiny devices.
"Just a little surprise for the Power Chamber," Zara replied. "Put one under each major part of the computer system. Since they look just like normal computer parts, they should blend in quite nicely."
"What do they do?"
"Well, when activated, they'll scramble signals, block communications and basically screw up the system."
Kat nodded, putting the devices back in the little bag. "Right. I'll take care of that tonight."
"What about Billy? I hear he tends to hang around late at night."
Kat smiled coldly. "Don't worry. If necessary, I'll take care of him too."
It was well after three in the morning when Kat entered the dark, silent Power Chamber. Closing her eyes, she did a quick scan of the chamber, searching for other minds. She smiled when she found none. 'Guess Zordon managed to kick Billy out,' she thought, pulling the bag out. She quickly completed her task and a small smile played on her lips as she looked around. "Let the games begin," she whispered.
Two days later....
"Ugh!" Adam grunted as he hit the ground and struggled to get back up.
"Adam!" Rocky shouted. He dispatched the Tenga he was fighting and quickly ran to his friend's aid. "Hang in there pal!" he exclaimed, taking out the giant bird going for Adam.
"Thanks," Adam said, accepting Rocky's help up.
"Whoa!" Tanya shouted, narrowly avoiding a savage blow. She retaliated with a blast from her laser pistol and, as her foe went down, shouted, "We don't have time for these buzzards! We have to put those fires out before they spread!"
Adam nodded his agreement, looking around at the small fires started by Zedd's latest monster, Fire Angel. "That thing's no angel," he muttered as he recalled the name. "Hey, wait a minute. Where is she?" he asked, suddenly realizing the monster was no where in sight.
"Hey Tommy!" Rocky shouted, "We have a big problem!"
"What's that?" Tommy asked as he deflected a blow from a Putty.
"The firefly from hell as disappeared!"
Tommy finished off his opponent and looked around. "Shit," he muttered as the others joined him.
"Something tells me she went that way, Bro." Jason said, pointing into the distance. Turning, they heard the hideous laugh of the monster, followed by a large flash of fiery light.
"Kat, think you can take care of the rest of this trash while we go after Fire Angel?" Tommy asked, quickly taking out a putty that rushed him.
"No problem," Kat replied, energy already beginning to gather around her hands. A small smile played across her lips as she watched them go.
"Ready for step two, sister dear?" Zara asked as she appeared at Kat's side. Kat nodded as the Tengas and Putties disappeared.
"Let's do it."
They joined hands and Zara began absorbing the energy Kat called upon. A look of amazement flashed though Kat's eyes a moment later when Zara's form melted into an exact replica of her own. There was a flash of light, and she was clothed in Kat's uniform.
"Have fun," Zara said in Kat's voice, then turned and ran off after the others. Kat watched her go, then teleported out.
* * *
Katherine!" Alpha exclaimed in surprise, looking from her to the viewing globe and back again. "What's going on? You're fighting the monster with the others!"
Kat removed her helmet and stared coldly at the little robot. "Think again, tin man," she said, raising her glowing hand and releasing a burst of energy. The blast hit Alpha, sending him crashing into a wall, then to the floor, where he remained still, sparks flying out and smoking.
"What the hell...?" Kat looked up to find Billy looking at her incredulously from the doorway of another chamber.
"Why Billy," she purred as she approached him, "You look upset. Something wrong?"
Billy was astounded. He looked at the viewing globe, which showed her fighting along side the others, then over at the incapacitated Alpha. "You can look at all this and actually ask me what's wrong?!" he exclaimed, his stunned gaze returning to her.
"Billy, get out of here immeaditly!" Zordon ordered, "Katherine is not in her right frame of mind."
"Quiet old man!" Kat snapped, turning her ice-cold eyes on her mentor, "I'll be with you in a moment."
She looked back at Billy, and found him slowly making his way towards the computer council and the teleportation switch, as he was not wearing his communicator. Seeing her attention was back on him, Billy paused for a split second, then made a run for it.
Kat raised her hand, releasing a burst of power that hit him in his side, knocking him to the floor. Groaning, he clutched his side, squeezing his eyes shut tightly against the pain that ran through him. Kat knelt next to him, and gently titled his head upward so she could look him in the eye.
"Sorry Billy. But I couldn't let you teleport out and alert the others. One, it would really screw up my plans, and two, I'm not ready for them to know what's going on yet." Billy's only response was a groan as a fresh wave of pain washed over him. Kat looked over at the viewing globe and realized that the fight was already reaching its climax. 'Not much time. Better hurry and get this done.'
She looked back at Billy and decided he wasn't a threat. He could hardly move so there was no way he could escape and alert the others in any way. Just to be sure, however, she dragged him away from the computers and sent enough energy through him to keep him immobilized. She smiled and patted his cheek. "Be a good boy, and I'll let you live through this."
Billy just looked at her with pain filled eyes. Kat stood and looked around. This was it. The Rangers' time was coming to and end. Beginning with Zordon and the Power Chamber.
Remembering Zordon, she looked up and found him watching her with an intense, slightly nervous expression. Smiling coldly, she pointed at one of the computer councils and released another burst of energy. The council exploded, releasing showers of sparks and creating small fires. She continued her destruction until only the council below Zordon was left. She turned and looked up at Zordon, a triumphant gleam in her eyes. "Your time is at an end, Zordon!" she sneered. "Say goodbye!"
"Katherine, I can feel another's hold over you."
"Wrong Zordon. I'm not under any spell. Not this time. You see, something rather interesting happened. Something you and the others don't know about. You remember how only a part of my power was active? Well guess what? All of my powers are active. And guess what else I discovered? I'm not an only child. I have a sister. Zara. That's why she took me in the park the other day. To tell me who I am. Don't try to tell me she has me under her control or something, 'cause she doesn't. All she did was show me my true self."
She paused, looking at the destruction around her. When she looked back, her eyes had lost some of their coldness, replaced by sadness and a hint of regret. "I'm sorry about this. I truly am. But in order for me to be truly free, I must break the hold you and the others have on me. I must destroy you all."
"Katherine, I know you do not believe it, but I do feel another's hold over you. Let me help you. You cannot do this."
"And who's going to stop me?" she snapped, suddenly angry. She gestured to Alpha, who was still smoldering from the energy blast. "They'll be lucky to get Alpha working again, much less get any information out of him. And Billy..." her voice trailed off as she looked over at him.
Her former teammate stared back at her with frightened, pleading eyes.
For a moment, she was unable to tear her gaze from his. 'Kat! This is no time to get sentimental!' Zara's voice snapped in her mind, 'Get your butt in gear, this battle's gonna be over any now!'
With difficulty, Kat tore her gaze away and turned her attention back to Zordon. "Its time Zordon," she said quietly, "No more chit chat, no more stalling. You don't know how sorry I am that it came to this. Don't worry about the others. If I can't have their lives spared, I'll make sure their deaths are quick and painless. I owe that much anyway." She looked down and spotted the button that would end everything. She reached out to push it and hesitated, remembering how frightened she had been when the dreams had shown her this exact moment. She closed her eyes, struggling with the emotions rushing through her. A few moments later, she opened them and they were hard and frighteningly cold.
"Goodbye Zordon," she whispered, then pushed the button. There was a flash of bright light, and when she raised her eyes to the column, Zordon was gone.
'Kat!' Zara's voice exclaimed in her mind, 'I sure hope you're done!'
'Yeah, I just have one more loose end to tie up,' Kat replied, her gaze moving to Billy.
'There's no time!' came Zara's urgent response, 'Tommy's about to give the command to head back!'
'Stall. That battle was pretty intense. Suggest you go help some injured or something. This'll just take a moment.'
She walked over to Billy, who watched her with intense fear in his tear-filled eyes. She knelt next to him and gently touched his cheek. "Oh Billy, I'm sorry you had to see that, but it had to be done."
"What...what are you going to...do now?" Billy stammered weakly.
"Don't worry, I'm not going to kill you. We need to talk. But not here, not now. I'm going to send you somewhere for a nice little nap, and when you wake up, we'll talk." Her hand began glowing and she moved it to her forehead. His eyes closed and in a quick flash of light, he vanished.
'All right Zara, I'm finished,' she thought as she slowly stood.
'Good, the others are just about to teleport. Prepare yourself.'
Kat silently put her helmet on, then stood in the place she anticipated she would be when the others teleported. Just seconds later, they materialized next to her. 'Show time.' As the others cried out in shock, she removed her helmet and looked around with a stunned expression.
"My god, what happened here?" she asked softly.
"Zordon," Tommy said in a faint whisper, his gaze on his mentor's empty tube.
"Aw man, Alpha!" Adam exclaimed as he caught sight of the little robot.
"Where's Billy?" Tanya asked in a frightened voice as Adam examined the android.
Tommy looked at Kat, who closed her eyes and pretended to san for him with her mind. She put on a worried look as she opened her eyes and revealed that he wasn't there.
As soon as she said it, Rocky cried out, "Tommy, come here quick!"
She followed Tommy over to the spot she had left Billy in while she dealt with Zordon and looked at the tiny pool of red liquid that had caught Rocky's attention. "Is this what I think it is?"
Tommy nodded, a grim look entering his eyes. "Yeah, it's blood."
He looked around the destroyed chamber, his gaze meeting Jason's. He could tell his closest friend was thinking the same thing he was. Was this another evil Ranger fiasco? His gaze traveled to the others, all of whom were in a state of shock.
"All right you guys, we need to pull ourselves together. Adam, think you can fix Alpha?" Adam looked at him worriedly.
"I don't know, Tommy. The damage is pretty intense. I think I can fix part of him, but we're gonna need Billy to get him operational again."
Tommy nodded. "Okay, do what you can. Kat, think you can do a mind scan for Billy or something?"
Kat nodded. "Yeah, but it'll probably take a while."
"All right, you do that. The rest of us will see what we can do about this mess. We're gonna have to get this place put back together before we can start looking for Zordon."
As the others began their tasks, Kat moved to an out of the way corner and sat crossed legged on the floor, pretending to enter a scanning trance, but actually meditating. After an hour or two, she decided it had been long enough and left her meditation. She stood and made her way over to Tommy.
"Anything?" he asked. She shook her head. "No. I'm going to go to the park. Maybe I'll be able to concentrate better in the open air."
Tommy nodded. "Okay, but be careful." He gave her a quick kiss and she teleported out.
Billy had been awake and searching for a way out of his dark surroundings for about a half hour when a soft meowing caught his attention. Turning, he found a white cat sitting and staring up at him questioningly.
"I'd ask where you came from, but I don't think I want to know," he said.
The cat's only response was a meow. Then, it stood and walked over to one of the walls. It looked back at him, then walked through.
Billy took a step back, startled. Curiosity soon got the better of him, however, and he slowly approached the deceptive wall. He put his arm through, and when nothing happened, took a deep breath andwent though himself.
Bright light assaulted his eyes on the other side. He raised his arm to shield his eyes until they adjusted. When he was able to see, he found he was in a garden of some kind.
"I thought it would be more comfortable to have our little talk in more pleasant surroundings."
Billy looked up into the branches of a tree for the source of the voice. Kat sat on a low branch, smiling down at him. She then jumped off her perch and landed gracefully before him. Billy backed up, eyeing her warily. She smiled, her eyes dancing with amusement as she watched him. "Relax Billy. I'm not going to hurt you. I only want to talk."
"All right, so talk."
Kat sat against a large boulder and her eyes sobered as she said, "First off, I want to apologize. I know how much Zordon meant to you."
Billy shook his head. "No, no I don't think you do." He paused, then added, "How could you do it, Kat? How could you betray your own friends? Worse yet, how could you betray the one being who has given us everything? Who has shown us things no ordinary human being as ever seen, who acted like a father to so many of us?"
"Simple," Kat replied with a shrug. "Survival and freedom."
"Survival and...Kat, you didn't have to do all that! You've always had freedom and, well, its not like any of us would have tried to kill you just because you're Zara's sister!"
"Please Billy, don't try to understand something you can't," Kat replied calmly.
Billy studied her for a long moment, then anger suddenly filled his eyes. "What's there to understand? I see what's happening. You've given up. You discovered who you once were and have given up. Instead of fighting to keep the goodness the ruling factor, you're letting your dark side grow stronger, embracing it. You're betraying all those who love you because you refuse to let go of who you once were and be who you are now. That's not fighting for survival and freedom. That would be honorable. What you're doing is dishonorable. It's cowardice, something I'd never expect from you."
Kat stared at him with a stunned expression. Intense anger then filled her eyes and in just a few, quick strides, she closed the distance between them and backhanded him sharply. The move came so fast it caught Billy off guard and the blow knocked him to the ground. Kat knelt down, grabbed some of his hair, and yanked his head back. Ignoring his cry of pain, she looked him in the eyes and snarled, "Hold you tongue, Billy! You should be grateful I haven't killed you yet!" She released him and stood, walking away a few feet and standing with her back to him.
"And why haven't you?" Billy asked cautiously as he slowly stood.
Kat turned back to him, calmness once again adorning her features. "Because I have a proposition for you."
"And that would be," Billy asked warily.
"I want you to join us."
The statement stunned Billy so much that all he could do was stare at her with his mouth hanging open.
Kat smiled at his reaction and continued, "Think about it. Earth is going to fall no matter what. Wouldn't you rather be on the winning side? I'm sure with your intelligence you would have some considerable influence. You may be able to save millions, perhaps billions of lives in the coming war. You don't even have to stick around after the Earth falls. Zara and I are taking off to travel the universes. You could come with us. Now this is a once in a life time chance Billy. Think it over carefully."
Billy was silent for a moment, then said, "I don't need to think about it. As much as I would love to explore the universe, see other worlds, the price is just far too high."
Kat nodded. "I'm sorry you feel that way, Billy. But I respect your decision."
Silence fell for a few short moments and then Billy broke it, an edge to his voice as he said, "So what are you going to do? Obviously you're not going to let me go back to the others knowing what I know."
Kat smiled. "Oh, but you're wrong Billy. That's exactly what I'm going to do."
"Uh, excuse me?" he asked in surprise.
Amusement and mischief danced in her eyes as she watched his reaction. She then approached him, her amusement growing as he backed away. She waved a hand and a wall appeared behind him, which he backed into. Before he could react, she had her mouth pressed to his. His struggles were quickly ended as electrical power shot into him, causing him to stiffen and his eyes to widen. He sank to the ground as Kat released him, gasping as the energy rushed through his system painfully. "What..what did you do?"
Kat knelt down and placed a hand on Billy's chest, easing his pain. "We're going to play a little game Billy. I just placed within you a, spell I guess you could call it. I'm going to take you back to the Power Chamber and you're not going to be able to say a thing what will implicate me. You're going to want to tell them of course, but now matter how hard you try, you won't be able to. Now, if you can get them to figure out its me, the spell will be broken and you can tell them everything. Sound like fun?"
"I think you're getting more twisted by the second."
Kat smiled and patted his cheek. "Flattery will get you nowhere. Come on now, stand up. Time to go back." She helped him to his feet, holding him steady as she pushed the teleport button on her communicator and the pair vanished in two columns of pink and white light.
* * *
Jason looked up as Tommy walked by him, heading for the Med. Chamber Billy was in, and stopped what he was doing to follow. Billy was laying quietly on one of the cots, staring vacantly up at the ceiling.
Kat had found and brought Billy back a few hours prior and, after much hysterical commotion, caused mainly by Billy, he was brought here to rest and recover from his ordeal. Jason stood quietly an watched as Tommy approached the cot and looked at Billy. After a moment, he said softly, "Billy, do you think you can tell me what happened now?"
Billy turned his gaze on Tommy and looked at him for a long time. Finally, in a voice so soft Jason had to stand next to Tommy to hear, he said, "I was in another chamber when I heard a commotion in the main chamber. I went to investigate and found Alpha on the floor with all this smoke and sparks coming out."
"Did you see who it was?" Tommy asked.
Billy nodded. Jason could see his younger friend was struggling intently with something, possibly his explanation. Finally, Billy said, "It was a Ranger - a female. She saw me and incapacitated me before I could get away. I..I watched as she destroyed the Power Chamber and.." His voice trailed off, tears filling his eyes.
Tommy put a hand on the other boy's shoulder and squeezed gently. "Its all right, Billy. We'll get him back. But for now, just rest and get your strength back."
"We'll be right outside if you need us," Jason added.
The boys turned and silently left the Med. Chamber.
"So?" Rocky asked when they re-entered the main chamber, "How is he? Did he get a look at who did this?"
Tommy and Jason exchanged looks, then Tommy said grimly, "He's still pretty shaken up and yes, he did see who did this." He paused, then added, "It was another Ranger. A girl."
The others looked at him in stunned surprise. "Oh man," Rocky finally muttered, "This is the last thing we need right now."
"Wait a minute," Adam said, a deep frown crossing his features, "That can't be right."
"What do you mean?" Jason asked.
Adam turned his gaze on him, then replied, "Well, just after we moved into the Power Chamber, Billy designed, built, and programmed a special security system. I even helped with some of it. You see, each time we teleport in, the computer scans us before we fully materialize and matches our bio-signatures with what's stored in its memory banks. If an unknown Ranger teleports in, the computer will encase them in an impenetrable force field and administer some sedative, just in case. The only way and unknown Ranger could get in here would be if they were teleported from here or if they came in with one of us. Just to be safe, if an unknown came in with one of us, then the computer would read out emotions. If it detects any negative emotions toward the unknown, such as fear, then the security kicks in. That's why Billy's story doesn't make sense."
"But why would Billy lie?" Tanya asked.
"Maybe he didn't have a choice," Jason suggested. "Or Maybe the security failed for some reason."
"Well, it's a possibility, but a very slim one," Adam answered.
"There is a quick, easy way to find out if Billy is lying," Kat said. She looked to Tommy, who hesitated, then nodded his consent.
As Kat headed into the Med. Chamber, Tommy turned to Adam and asked, "How are the repairs on Alpha going?"
Adam sighed. "Slow. I'm really going to need Billy's help."
Tommy nodded and glanced at his watch. "It's getting late. You guys should go home, get some rest. I'm going to spend the night here so I can keep an eye on Billy."
"I'm going to stay too" Jason said.
Adam, Tanya and Rocky all looked at one another, then Adam said, "Us too."
* * *
A small smile played on Kat's lips as she approached the cot Billy lay sleeping in. She'd been watching him only a moment, when he jerked awake and lashed out. Kat caught his arm before he could connect with a blow and said with some amusement, "A little tense aren't we?"
"What do you want?" Billy asked as she released him.
"Just wanted to congratulate you on how well you're playing the game so far. Adam told us about your little security system, so your explanation of an unknown Ranger has them all highly suspicious that something's not right. But you know what? I'm going to sooth their suspicions. I'm going to give them your mysterious Ranger. What I have in mind is really going to shake them up."
"What are you planning?"
"You'll see. Better get some rest. Tomorrow's going to be a long, long day." She turned to leave, but stopped and turned back when she reached the door. "Oh and Billy? One more thing. Check mate."
Zara smiled as Kat finished outlining her scheme. "Oh, that could be so much fun!" she exclaimed. "Let's do it now!"
Kat nodded. She glanced around the secluded area of the park they were in, then said, "Its going to take a bit of power, so I'm going to need your help."
Zara nodded and the pair clasped hands and closed their eyes. Simultaneously, they began to glow. Zara began absorbing the images and energy Kat was calling upon. A green light swiftly enshrouded Zara until nothing could be seen of her. Kat gritted her teeth as Zara drew more power from her and the process drew to a close. She let out a shriek a moment later as the power was abruptly cut off and she was thrown to the ground. She shook her head to clear her vision then looked up and a smile crossed her lips at the sight before her. "Oh this is perfect," she said as she stood. She swayed and Zara quickly reached out to steady her.
"You all right?" she asked in concern.
Kat nodded. "Just a little drained. Quick, get the Tengas down here. We've got to introduce you to the others!"
Zara nodded. "Act like you had a run in with me, which is why you're so drained and need help."
She teleported away, and a moment later, a flock of Tengas appeared. Kat smiled and slipped into a defensive stance. "Okay boys. Let's make this look real."
* * *
"Yes!" Billy exclaimed as Alpha gave a jolt and his system started up.
"Ai-yi-yi!" he cried, "What happened?" He looked around the messy chamber and added, "Oh no, not again! Oh and I can't remember a thing!"
"Guess that answers the main question," Rocky said.
Before anyone else could say anything, Tommy's communicator beeped and Kat's voice filtered through. "Guys, this is Kat! Does anyone read?"
Tommy brought his communicator up and said, "This is Tommy, Kat. What's up?" "I've got a little problem. I'm in the park being over run by Tengas. I could really use some help here!"
Tommy nodded. "Hang tight Kat. We're on out way."
The group morphed and before they could teleport out, Billy said, "Guys, wait!" He met their looks with worry and said, "Be careful okay? I've got a bad feeling about this."
Tommy squeezed his friend's shoulder reassuringly, then the five teleported out.
* * *
They arrived to find Tengas swarming all over the area, but no Kat.
"Where is she?" Tanya asked as she scanned the flock.
"There!" Rocky exclaimed. The others looked in the direction he was pointing and saw a very large cluster of the giant birds swarming over something. A flash of pink told them what that something was.
"Blasters guys!" Tommy ordered, drawing his weapon. "Try not to hit Kat," he added as they took aim. They began firing and soon had all the birds off their comrade. As the other four ran to engage their foes, Tommy hurried over and knelt next to Kat.
"You all right?" he asked anxiously. She nodded.
"Yeah, just a little weak. I had a run in with Zara. I'll be all right in a while."
He was about to ask if she could fight, when the Tengas abruptly vanished.
"Hey, where'd they go?" Rocky asked in surprise.
He hurried over to where the other Rangers had gathered just as Adam said, "Why do I get the feeling the Tengas were just something to get us out here?"
"Probably because they were," Kat replied, her attention focused on something.
The Rangers looked in the direction she was and let out stunned gasps. Standing on a small hill, looking down at them, was a Green Dragon Ranger! Aside from being female, this Green Dragon was a little different from the original. One, the material of her suit hugged her body so closely; it was almost like a second skin. As with the other female Rangers, a satiny skirt had been added and the shield taken away. The helmet was strangely different too. It seemed thinner and gave the bizarre illusion of being transparent. A sword was strapped to her back in ninja fashion and on one hip, a holster was strapped, housing a Blaster and on the other hip was another holster containing the Dragon Dagger.
Tommy took an involuntary step back, his face paling beneath his helmet. "No way," he whispered, "It can't be."
Despite the differences, this was, indeed, the Green Dragon Ranger in a more updated form.
There was a flash of light and Rita and Zedd appeared a short distance away from her. Kat smiled when she saw them and assumed Zara had told them what was going on and that they were here to give Tommy a hard time.
Her suspicion proved to be correct when Rita said, "So what do you think Tommy? Surprised? Didn't think it was possible huh? She was created just for you, and this one won't betray us!"
"We chose a female this time because, well, I have to admit, the female is the more deadlier of any species," Zedd said, looking at his wife who smiled at the compliment. "Females tend to get the job done, wouldn't you agree Kat?" he added, his gaze landing on the Pink Ranger.
Kat took on a hostile position, letting energy crackle around her clenched fists. But beneath her helmet, her smiled widened.
"What do you say Tommy?" Rita taunted, "Care to try our new Ranger out? Or are ya afraid?"
It was obvious what Tommy's answer was when his body tensed and his fists clenched. The Green Ranger teleported from her spot on the hill to a spot several feet away that would be suitable for battle.
Tommy started toward her, but was quickly blocked by Jason. "Be careful Bro." he warned, "She's gonna play on your emotions based on what she did to the Power Chamber, just like you did with me. Don't let your emotions get in the way. We'll be right here if you need us."
Tommy nodded and Jason stepped aside.
Zara remained silent as Tommy approached, deciding it would be more fun to keep everything about this 'New Ranger' a mystery, including her voice. He stopped a few feet from her and they stared at one another, Tommy sizing her up and Zara pretending to do the same. A moment later, Zara bowed, then attacked.
As they fought, Zara was careful to disguise her moves, knowing that Tommy, though they had only fought a few times, would recognize her style and ruin the game. It proved to be quite difficult. Tommy was fighting with such calm fierceness, she found herself slipping in and out of her preferred style. Plus, keeping up a morphed illusion was quickly zapping her strength, something she hadn't expected.
'Zara, you'd better call it quits,' Kat's voice floated through her mind, 'At the rate your going, he's libel to figure out who you are any time now!'
Zara nodded shortly and lashed out with a kick that forced Tommy back a few steps. She saluted him, then teleported back to the hill, appearing next to Rita and Zedd. She conferred with them, and then Zedd turned and said, "Until next time Rangers." Then, the trio vanished. The others hurried over to their leader, who was staring at the hill while massaging his right arm.
"You all right Bro.?" Jason asked.
Tommy nodded. "Yeah, let's get back to the Power Chamber."
* * *
Tommy cried out once he had de-morphed and fell to the Chamber floor, clutching his left leg. Kat was by his side instantly, examining the injury.
"Mmm, she got you pretty good huh?" she commented, making a mental note to tell Zara to lay off in the future. They may be on opposite side, but she still loved the guy and didn't want to see him hurt.
While Kat was busy healing Tommy's leg, Jason was busy studying Billy. The other boy was watching Kat like a hawk, a tense, nervous expression on his face. He suddenly noticed Jason watching him and quickly returned to what he had been doing. Suspicion and uneasiness flooded through him. He turned his attention back to Kat, who had finished with Tommy and was now taking care of her own weariness. She saw him watching her and flashed a smile that didn't quite reach her eyes. For some reason, it sent shivers down his spine.
"Man, I don't know about you guys," Adam spoke up, "But I could use a break. What do you say we go to Ernie's and get some smoothies?" The group readily agreed.
"You coming Billy?" Tommy asked.
Billy looked at them, avoiding Kat's eyes as he replied, "Umm, I'll catch you up with you in a bit. I...just want to finish this up."
Tommy shot him a strange look, but said, "Okay, see you there."
Then, all but Jason teleported out. Jason watched as Billy relaxed visibly, putting both hands on the computer council and lowering his head, letting his breath out in what sounded like relief. "All right Billy, what's going on?"
Billy gasped and spun around, obviously more than a little startled. "Jason! Wha-what are you still doing here? Why didn't you go with the others?'
"Because I want to know what's got you so spooked and what you're hiding," Jason replied, deciding to be blunt and to the point.
"I...I'm not sure what you mean," Billy answered lamely.
"Come on Billy, don't lie to me. We've known each other for as long as I can remember. You can't lie to me and get away with it and you know it. Now what is it?"
Billy, unable to meet Jason's gaze, turned away, staring down at what he had managed to get working again. This only angered Jason, who quickly closed the distance and spun him around.
"Damn it Billy! Talk to me! Ever since yesterday, you've been nervous and jumpy as hell! This situation is no different than from when Tommy first showed up. The only difference is that you witnessed..."
He trailed off and his eyes widened. "Wait a minute. When you said you saw who did this, you really meant it. You saw her with her helmet off didn't you? You know her identity."
Billy nodded, still unwilling to meet Jason's eyes. Jason, sensing this was a topic that needed to be approached carefully, said softly, "Who is she Billy?"
Billy desperately wanted to answer the question. To tell him that Kat was behind it all and about her relation to Zara, but the spell within him kept him from doing so. Instead, he replied quietly, "I can't say."
Jason had suspected as much. If he had seen the girl's face, she certainly would not have let him live without somehow sealing his lips. That figured out, Jason moved on to his next question. "Billy, is Kat involved in any of this?"
Billy shook his head as the spell instantly kicked in. "No, so far I haven't seen any indication that she is."
"Then why do you seem so afraid of her?"
Billy shrugged. "That power of hers seems to be getting stronger. It's just making me nervous is all."
It was a convincing lie, and Jason would have bought it had Billy not chosen that moment to look him in the eyes. Jason was startled by the haunted, tired look there. It served to fuel his suspicions toward Kat. He nodded and said, "All right listen, I'm going to get to the bottom of this. In the meantime, just chill. If you spend all your time in this state, you're libel to have a breakdown."
Billy nodded and, just as Jason was about to teleport out, put a hand on his arm. "Jase, be careful okay? This...this is deep." Jason nodded, then vanished in a column of golden light.
Kat hurried through the park, headed toward the area she sensed Zara was in. The pair need to talk and decided what to do next. She was concerned. Jason hadn't been with them when they materialized in the dark corner of the Youth Center parking lot. A quick scan had revealed he was still in the Power Chamber, grilling Billy. He had gotten too suspicious too fast. She wasn't ready to reveal her surprise yet.
She finally spotted Zara, disguised as Kayla, talking with Rocky. 'So that's where he disappeared to.' As Kat watched, Rocky bent his head down, Zara tipped hers up, and their lips met in a tender kiss. Kat raised her brows. That kiss looked at little too sincere for Zara to be playing her syren role. 'Hmmm, I wonder.'
"Kayla!" she called as they broke off.
"Hey Kat," Rocky said with a smile as she jogged up to them, "What's up?"
"Actually, I was hoping to talk to Kayla about some school stuff."
"Relax Kat. He knows what's up," Zara said, shimmering back to her true form.
Kat looked at Rocky and noticed a soft, red glow suddenly enter his eyes. "How long has he been your little toy?"
Zara smiled. "Since the second day Kayla showed up. He's so much more looser than Adam, and I'm sure he's just as deadly." She looked at Kat, then back at Rocky and said, "Why don't you go back to the Youth Center and keep an eye on the others for me sugar? I'll meet up with you later."
Rocky nodded and took off. Zara watched him leave with what might have been a dreamy look in her eyes.
"I don't believe it," Kat said, watching her, "You're falling for Rocky!"
"I am not!" Zara retorted, turning her gaze on her sister, "He's my servant. My toy, nothing more."
"Oh please. I can practically hear your heart racing!"
Zara started to respond, then stopped and thought about it. Finally, she said, "You didn't track me down to talk about my love life. So what's up?"
Kat chuckled, then replied, "I think we should plan what to do next."
"Whatever we do, we're going to have to be careful using our little Green Ranger. Holding up a morphed illusion like that is much harder than I thought. I damn near collapsed when I 'de-morphed.'"
"Hmm. Well, we can probably hold off on that for a few days. Right now, my main concern is Jason. I think he suspects something about me."
Zara shrugged. "So keep an eye on him. If you think he knows too much, then get rid of him. Get Rocky to keep an eye him too. He won't suspect Rocky." She paused, then added, "In the meantime, I think I'll get some Tengas sent down, then make an appearance myself. I just realized I haven't graced them with my presence yet."
"Hold off on that idea for a few hours," Kat replied, "I want to go home and get some sleep first."
Zara nodded. "Kay. Just let me know when you're ready. I'll find something to occupy myself in the meantime."
"Yeah, I bet you will," Kat said, earning a dirty look from her sister. Kat just giggled, then teleported out.
* * *
Jason sat near the edge of what he had come to refer to as Silver Point. It was the spot where he and Princess Kamara had shared their first kiss and spent their last night together. He called it Silver Point because of the mysterious silver tinge in the grass and surrounding trees and bushes. He had noticed it the morning she left, after Tommy had left from finding out if he was all right. Jason suspected it was her way of marking this place as theirs. Maybe even to serve as a reminder of the special moments they had shared here.
Jason sighed as he looked at the imprint of the Silver Star on the palm of his right hand. The symbol of her undying love for him. He stood and took a stance. Taking a deep breath, he slowly began the movements of the mysterious, mystical Tai-Chi Kamara had taught him.
As he moved into the second string, he felt his mind open and reach out. He was startled when his mind touched upon a power source and silver light suddenly enveloped him. When the light cleared and he was able to see, he found himself in an all too familiar clearing, surrounded by majestic forest. Sensing a presence behind him, he spun around and his eyes widened.
Standing several feet away, watching him with glowing silver eyes, was a beautiful young girl. She was dressed in a flowing, silver green gown and had long, deep red hair with silver streaks throughout.
"Kara?" he whispered.
She smiled. "Hello, my love."
"Kara!" He rushed forward and scooped her up, twirling her around and hugging her tightly.
She laughed, her eyes returning to their dazzling green as he set her down. "Its good to see you too, my love."
At a loss for words, Jason could only ask, "But how?"
"I brought you here. I have been in a deep trance for two days now, waiting for you to enter a state where I could reach you. I need to warn you that there is treachery and betrayal in your ranks."
Jason tensed. "Is it Katherine?"
"Aye, though not entirely of her own free will. Her full power has awakened along with the evil that is its source. It is controlling her mind and her soul. The goodness that wasn't destroyed when her full power awoke has been locked away deep in her heart. She believes that she is and always has been evil. She believes that the only reason she was ever good was because of something Zordon did. If she can be convinced that this is not true, made to see the goodness in her heart that no being of true evil could ever possess, then the chains binding it will break, and the battle for control can begin. If the goodness wins, then the evil will become docile, merging with her soul and her heart and re-balancing everything."
"How do you know all this?" Jason asked, "And what happens if the good can't defeat the evil?"
"For the past few weeks, I have been having visions and dreams. That is how I knew of your situation. As for what will happen if the good can't defeat the evil...well, it must. I have already told you what will happen if the goodness wins. If the evil wins, I have seen her committing acts more horrible than what Lord Zedd has done." She paused, a puzzled look entering her eyes. "The strange thing is, I have seen Zara with. How could that be?"
Jason hesitated, then said, "I hate to tell you this, but Zara is alive. Kat's the only one whose had any run ins with her so far."
Kamara was silent for a moment. "She must have had something to do with Kat's powers awakening," she mused.
Her eyes took on a far away look and when she re-focused them, she said, "It is time for us to part. My physical body is reaching its limit. But before we part, I must warn you. You will not remember this meeting. When you return to physical body, your suspicions of Kat will be stronger than ever, but so will your cautions."
"But why won't I remember anything? I remembered everything the last time I was here."
"I'm not sure. I think it may have something to do with the great distance between us. The magic that lets us remember what happens while we are here is very week. Because of who I am, I will remember just about everything." She closed her eyes and took a deep breath. When she reopened them, they held weariness. "It is time to part. I wish you luck in the events to come."
Jason pulled her into his arms and held her tight. "I miss you." She pulled back a little and looked up at him. "I miss you too. I have from the moment I stepped into that portal, and I'll continue to miss you until I'm truly back in your arms. I love you."
"I love you too," Jason whispered, then their lips met.
His eyes opened to the beeping of his communicator. He stopped the last flow of movements, and brought the device to his lips. "Jason here."
"Ai-yi-yi! Jason, the others need you in the park!" Alpha exclaimed.
"All right, I'm on my way." Before he teleported, he felt an odd wetness on his cheeks. He touched them, then touched his eyes and found them to be wet too. 'Tears?' he thought, 'Now why would I be crying?' He shook his head and moved to touch the teleport button. He'd figure it out later.
* * *
Kamara's eyes opened with a jerk as she was abruptly returned to her body. The two guards keeping watch over her were at her side in an instant.
"Highness, are you all right?" one asked as she and her companion helped Kamara up.
Kamara nodded as she lowered herself into a chair.
"I'll have some food brought to you majesty," the second guard said.
She nodded again and he hurried from the room. Kamara sat back and closed her eyes, reflecting on her visitation with Jason. She was relieved she had warned him. Even if he didn't remember their talk, at least he'd be turned in the right direction.
A smile crossed her lips as she remembered the feeling of being in Jason's arms. She missed that feeling so much. She then remembered the sweetness of his lips on hers...She gasped and her eyes flew open, startling the guard. Before anything could be said, the door to the room opened and a woman dressed in soldier uniform entered. "My Queen," she said with a salute, "I heard you were finished. Did you get your warning through?"
"Yes, and I learned something very disturbing. Zara is still alive, and I think I know what her connection to Katherine is." She stood. "I must go to Earth right away."
The woman looked at her in surprise. "But my Queen, we're in the middle of a war here!"
"A war we are winning. If I'm correct, then the Rangers may not be able to win their current fight without my help." She put her hand on the woman's shoulder and added, "Jarva, you are my best warrior, commander and friend. I have faith that you can handle things here in my absence."
Jarva seemed about to protest, but the strained, almost frightened look in her young Queen's eyes changed her mind. She stepped back and offered a formal salute. "I will do my best to live up to your expectations, my Queen."
Kamara saluted in return, then hurried from the room to prepare for her long journey.
* * *
"There he is," Tanya said as she and Adam entered the Youth Center and spotted Tommy. They quickly made their way over to where their leader was mercilessly pummeling a punching bag. "Tommy, we need to talk."
"About what?" Tommy asked, his attention never leaving the bag.
"Rocky," Tanya replied, "We're worried about him. He's been acting really weird lately."
"Can you blame him? He's probably just trying to deal with all that's happening."
"No, no, you don't understand. He's been acting really, really bizarre."
"It's like he thinks he's a secret agent in a Bond movie or something," Adam put in. "We noticed it a couple days ago. He's been watching us and acting all secretive. We were in the park about a half hour ago and spotted him up a tree watching Jason go over some moves with one of his students. We think there's something really wrong."
Tommy stopped hitting the bag and looked at them. Their expressions conveyed that of deep worry, which severed to place concern in him. "All right, I'll talk to him when I see him."
They nodded, relief evident in their eyes, then headed over to the bar for something to drink.
His eyes traveled to the door and landed on Jason as he entered and quickly made his way over. "Hey Jase, have you noticed anything about Rocky lately?"
"Actually, yeah I have. But it's not important right now. I was just at the Power Chamber. Billy started the search for Zordon a few hours ago, but the amount of power he's using knocked communications off line. He expects teleportation to go off pretty soon too due to the rather large power surges. He and Alpha are trying to re-route it now."
"Aw man, that could be a problem if we're attacked. I'm going to go see what I can do to help. If you see Rocky, tell him I want to talk to him."
Jason nodded, and Tommy left. Adam said something to Tanya, then followed Tommy.
Jason moved away from the punching bag to a clear section of the mats, needing to clear his head. He took a stance and launched into a simple, meditative Tai-Chi exercise. He closed his eyes and, as his right hand passed by, an image flashed through his mind.
The image was of Rocky, kneeling before Zara with softly glowing red eyes. The image shifted to Kat, wearing a disturbingly cold, malicious expression as she terrorized innocent people.
His eyes opened with a start and he looked at his hand. The star was glowing, something that had never happened before.
Looking around, he spotted Kat, talking with her ballet students. The star's glowing turned dark as soon as his eyes landed on her, clueing him in.
Spotting Tanya, he quickly made his way over to her. "Tanya, can I talk to you a minute?"
"Yeah, sure. What's up?"
He took her hand and led her to a table. "Tanya, I think I know who destroyed the Chamber."
Tanya's eyes widened. "You mean, you know the identity of that Ranger?" she asked quietly.
Jason shook his head. "No, I think this new Ranger is bogus. There's no way Rita and Zedd could recreate the Green Ranger without the green coin and Tommy. Billy saw the girl without her helmet. He knows her identity, but something is preventing him from telling us. Tanya, I think its Kat."
Tanya looked at him, stunned. "Kat!" she exclaimed in a low voice, "Jason, that's ridiculous! Kat would never turn on us!"
"Are you sure about that Tanya? Have you see Billy lately? He's terrified of her. He's a nervous, jumpy wreak whenever he's around her. And this all started after her encounter with Zara in the park." He looked past her and noticed Kat getting ready to leave.
"Look, I'm going to find out what's going on once and for all. To do that, I'm going to have to follow her. If something should happen to me, if I should disappear or something, I want you to go straight to Tommy and tell him what I just told you. Just Tommy, no one else. Especially Rocky. I'm pretty sure he's not quite with us right now. Can you do that for me?"
Tanya stared at him with a bewildered expression. Finally, she nodded.
Jason's eyes traveled to Kat, who was now walking out the door. "Thanks Tanya, I knew I could count on you," he said, jumping up.
"Jason wait!" Tanya said quickly, stopping his departure. "Be careful okay? None of us want to loose you."
Jason squeezed her hand, then hurried from the center.
* * *
Jason tailed Kat to a remote area of the park.
Hiding behind a tree, he watched as she sat down on a bench, appearing to wait. Her wait ended a moment later when a figure appeared in a flash of black flame.
"Zara," Jason whispered, "I knew it"
He watched as the two girls engaged in what seemed to be a casual conversation. Their facial expressions kept switching from amused to serious and business like.
Finally, after several moments, he decided it would be best to report back to Tommy. It was painfully obvious Kat was in league with Zara and definitely not under any spell. 'Hope teleportation isn't off line.'
He turned around to make sure he was in the clear before teleporting, and met blackness.
* * *
Zara and Kat both displayed expressions of surprise as Jason's unconscious form was dumped unceremoniously at their feet. "I caught him spying," Rocky said, offering a quick salute.
"Spying!" Kat exclaimed, "How on Earth did he follow me without me knowing?"
Zara shrugged. "Doesn't matter. We were gonna have to get rid of him anyway right?"
Kat nodded and asked, "So what do you want to do with him?"
"Lets just dump him in another dimension until after this next battle. Then we can go play with him."
"Are you sure you can hold up the illusion?"
"Yeah, I think so. I've had a few days to rest, so I shouldn't have too much trouble." She knelt next to Jason, put a hand on his chest and said, "See ya in a bit." Then she and Jason vanished.
Kat looked at Rocky and said, "Come on, let's go to the Chamber."
* * *
Tommy looked up as a barely visible teleportation stream materialized into Tanya. Just seconds later, Kat and Rocky appeared. "What's with the teleportation?" Kat asked with a frown.
"The power surges caused by the search for Zordon is draining it," Tommy replied, "Billy and Adam are on a lower level trying to re-route it while Alpha and I monitor from here."
"So far, all they've been able to do is bring communications back on line," Alpha added.
"Wait a sec." Tommy's attention was drawn to the computer as it beeped out information. A smile crossed his face and he reached over and pushed a button.
"Guys, you did it! Teleportation has been re-routed and is as strong as ever!"
"All right then, we'll be up in a minute," came Billy's reply.
A few moments later, the pair entered the main chamber. Just seconds after they entered, the alarm went off.
"I was wonder when she'd show up again," Adam muttered.
Tanya's eyes traveled to Kat and Rocky. Rocky was watching the Green Ranger with a blank, almost cold expression. Kat's expression startled her. There was a small smirk on her lips and what looked like amusement in her eyes. 'Was Jason right?' she thought, looking away with a shiver, 'Could Kat really be involved in all this?'
She looked at Tommy as he said, "Billy, contact Jason and have him meet us there." Billy nodded and Tommy called out, "It's morphin time!"
* * *
Zara looked up and smiled beneath her 'helmet' as the Rangers teleported in. Abandoning her current destruction of an out door cafÈ, she turned and faced the group silently. Slowly, she walked forward until she was just a few feet away, stopping as they fell into defensive positions. She watched them for a moment, then bowed and attacked. Half an hour into the battle, Zara, who had been fighting and holding her illusion well thanks to the fact that two of the Rangers were on her side and one was missing, took a hard, stunning blow from Adam. She stumbled back, struggling not to loose the power she was using to keep the illusion in place while at the same time fending off furious attacks.
'Kat, I think I'm in trouble here!' she thought, taking another hit from Tanya.
'Yeah, I noticed,' came Kat's reply. 'Do you remember that battle with the Taracilians?'
Zara knew what Kat was thinking instantly. 'Are you sure you can do it, Kat?' she asked, firing a blast a Tommy and dodging a kick from Adam, 'It's been a long time.'
'Yeah, just brace yourself. It's probably going to be a bit forceful.' Standing straight, she raised her hands to the sky, drawing power from within her to the surface and letting her hands glow with pink energy. Her eyes narrowed beneath her helmet as she noticed a Jade tinge to the energy.
Pushing it to the back of her mind for later reference, she turned her attention to the clear, blue sky. At her silent command, lightning flashed and struck her, mixing with the power she had summoned. She gritted her teeth as the power surged through her, looking for a way out. An out she gladly gave it. "Everybody move!" she shouted.
As everyone got out of the way, she took aim and released the pent up power.
Zara held out her hands, releasing her own power as though to counter the 'attack.' The two energies met and combined, then burst, some flying into Zara and some into Kat.
Despite the harshness of the impact, the energy brought everything back under control and strengthened the illusion considerably. Grinning, Zara stood, and the battle continued.
'Ugh! Hey, easy on what blows you let connect sis!' Kat thought, rubbing her ribs as Zara received a hard blow.
'You felt that?' Zara asked in surprise, catching Rocky with a light kick to the stomach.
'Of course,' Kat replied as the pair engaged in a very real looking fight, 'Why wouldn't I?'
'Cause you're not supposed to, remember? Not like this. I'm going to take a breather. Meet me at the palace as soon as possible. We need to look into this.'
That said, she back flipped away, shot them a salute, the disappeared in greenish black flame.
* * *
"Billy, what happened to Jase?" Tommy asked as he removed his helmet, "Why didn't he show up?"
Billy looked up at Tommy, a concerned, fearful expression in his blue eyes. "I don't know. He's not answering his communicator and I can't get a lock on him through the computers."
Tanya froze, her eyes shooting to Kat. The other girl's attention, however, was directed on healing the small wounds and bruises she had received.
She looked at Billy, who was watching Kat with an unreadable expression. Kat, sensing she was being watched, looked up and met Billy's gaze. She flashed him a smile that Tanya could easily see was anything but friendly.
Her attention was torn from the pair as Tommy said with a hint of anger in his voice, "Damn! We don't need a missing Ranger on our hands right now!"
He paused, then looked at Kat. "Kat, think you can track him down?"
Kat shrugged. "Don't know. That fight took more out of me then I thought. But I can certainly try."
Tommy nodded. "Do it."
As Kat teleported out, Tommy's gaze landed on Rocky. "Rocky, go wait in Chamber 2. I want to talk to you. Adam, Tanya, you two go look for Jason the old fashioned way. Maybe someone has seen him."
Adam and Tanya nodded and teleported out as Rocky disappeared into Chamber 2.
Tommy then looked at Billy and said, "Go home and get some sleep man. You look like a member of the living dead!"
When Billy made no move to leave, Tommy tried a different approach. "Billy go on. Alpha can look after things here. Its his job. Go home or I'll have you sedated and teleported home by force!"
Seeing the seriousness in Tommy's eyes, Billy nodded, stepped back and teleported out.
Tommy sighed, then headed for Chamber 2.
"All right, so what's so surprising about this connection of ours?" Kat asked as she entered the room Zara was in.
"Don't you remember what that trick is for and why we used it against the Taracilians in the first place? They had that annoying ability to drain the energy from their opponents. We used that little trick to keep each other's energy up. It never connected us like this." As she finished her explanation, she produced a knife, held out her forearm and slashed the flesh quickly and sharply.
"Hey!" Kat cried, clutching her forearm as pain shot through.
"See?" Zara said, heeling the bleeding gash, "Pain in the ass these connections are. Just have to hope that when the power connection wears off, so will this one."
"Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I'm not exactly who I used to be," Kat suggested, rubbing her arm.
"Well, whatever it is, we'll just have to be a little more careful in battle for a while."
"Oh Zara, I wanted to ask you something," Kat said after a moment of silence had passed. She let some energy flare up through her palm. "What is with this Jade tinge here?"
"You don't remember?" Zara asked in surprise. "Jade was your favorite color. You took after dad. He was a real Jade freak too. Mother and I never understood why. Black is such a dominating color. Anyway, your energy was a Jade color before it was Pink, so I'm guessing your older power is just letting you know its still there, waiting to be used."
Kat thought about that, then nodded. She glanced at her watch, then stood. "Guess I should get back and report my failure to locate Jason."
Zara smiled. "I nearly forgot about him. I think I'll go pay our guest a visit. Wouldn't want him getting lonely."
Kat just smiled, then vanished.
* * *
Jason's next awarement was being on a cold, hard surface.
He slowly opened his eyes, then sat up, and was instantly assaulted by an intense pain in his head. Wincing, he put his head in his hands, and the star glowed softly, soothing the pain.
When he was able, he looked up and took in his surroundings. He was sitting on the floor of what he could only assume was another dimension. A dark, cold dimension.
'How did I get here?' he thought, trying to think back.
He remembered following Kat to the park, her meeting with Zara, his decision to talk to Tommy, and then blackness. He had never seen who or what had hit him.
"Welcome back to the land of the living, sugar."
Jason stood and spun around in one, fluid motion, slipping into a defensive position.
Zara smiled. "I really doubt you can take me in your condition sugar," she purred.
"I can sure as hell try," Jason growled in reply.
Zara's smile widened. "Yeah, you could. But I don't feel like it." She waved her hand and an invisible force slammed into Jason, forcing him back into a wall, where his wrists where encircled by glowing chains, trapping him.
Jason shook his head to clear his vision, then tried to struggle against his bonds anyway.
"Oh poor Jason," Zara said with mock sympathy, "You're really in a bind this time, aren't you? And no little princess around to save you. Bummer huh?"
She reached out and gently stroked his cheek, a mischievous gleamed entering her ice blue eyes. "But I might help you, if you're nice to me."
Jason jerked away, and Zara feigned a hurt look. "Jason, I'm hurt. Don't you find me attractive?"
"I have a hard time finding snakes attractive!" Jason snapped in reply.
Zara raised her brows. "Well now, aren't we snide. Have a bad day?"
"You try finding out someone you trusted is a traitor and see how well your day goes!"
"Now sugar, that was your own fault. If you and your suspicious little mind had just stayed clear, you wouldn't be in this mess, about to become my mindless little plaything."
Jason froze and his eyes locked on her.
Adam had been in her control when she was still after Kamara. Although he hadn't been mindless when he was fighting against them, none of them knew what had happened when had been alone with her. Except for Kat. After Kamara had left, Adam had suffered from horrific nightmares for a solid week. Kat had finally convinced him to talk to her, and then had used her powers to help him overcome it.
Although Jason didn't know the details of his friend's ordeal, he certainly knew it was something he didn't want to go through himself. Zara's smile turned seductive and predatory as she watched him, and she pressed her body up tightly against his.
"You're afraid," she whispered, her breath hot in his ear, "I can feel it, smell it, taste it."
He felt his shirt come out from his pants and then her hand was caressing his chest. She moved to kiss him, but he quickly turned his head away. She chuckled softly, then her hands began roaming. He started struggling and tried to lash out, but her body was pressed too tightly against his to do much good.
He cried out in pain as she growled and sent an electric shock through him. He closed his eyes and tried to block out her exploring hands while willing the pain to subside.
"Jason," a soft, new voice whispered, "Jason my love, open your eyes." Slowly, Jason did so and drew in his breath when he saw who was now standing before him.
"Kara?" he whispered shakily.
She smiled and lightly stroked his cheek. "Yes my love, its me."
"H-how did you get here?"
"You needed me, and I came," she replied, her voice never going above a soft whisper. "I'm going to take you away from here, so we can be together. Would you like that?"
Jason nodded. "More than anything. But what about my friends? They're in danger."
Kara shook her head. "They're going to be fine, my love. I've provided them with help. You've done your part. Its time for us to begin our life together, as we were meant to." His eyes closed with hers, and their lips met.
The star on his palm flickered in what may have been confusion as the kiss deepened. 'Kara's' eyes, opened a bit as she sensed the power source and looked at his palm.
'Well now,' she thought, 'a little security system. Cleaver, very cleaver. Too bad you're so far away little mouse. Blocking this is going to be a snap.'
She closed her eyes again and stepped up the kiss to a nearly unbearable passionate level. She made a quick gesture and the chains fell away, freeing Jason to wrap his arms tightly around her. A quick thought and the cold confines of the dimension fell away, replaced by a spectacular scene of beauty. Of course, it was only an illusion, but she needed him to think she really was Kara.
Jason broke away in surprise at the abrupt change of scenery. It was stunning. There was forest all around, with birds singing and the occasional animal running through the woods. To his right, a breathtaking waterfall fell, creating a shimmering pool of crystal clear water.
He could feel 'Kara's' eyes on him as he looked around. It made him nervous. The scenery wasn't the only reason he had broken away from the kiss. Something wasn't quite right here. This magnificent creature with him looked like Kara, and talked like her, but it didn't feel like her.
"Something wrong, my love?" she asked, and her voice made him shiver. He turned to face her. "Kara, why can't I feel you? I can't hear your thoughts or feel your emotions."
'Damn!' she thought, 'I hadn't thought of that.' She smiled and approached him. Wrapping her arms around his neck, she said softly, "Looks liked I've been gone a little too long. Our bond seems to need a littlejump start."
She pressed her lips to his, and Jason began falling into her spell of seduction. 'In just a moment, you'll be mine,' she thought.
Unnoticed by either of them, the star on Jason's hand once again glowed softly, and the soft red glow that had been forming beneath his closed eyes, vanished.
She broke the kiss and smiled, expecting to see, as he opened his eyes, the evidence that he was under her control. Her smile faded when he opened his eyes to reveal brown instead of red.
'It didn't work! I can't block that part of the Star's power! Damn!'
Jason watched the emotions flicker across her face and grew alarmed. Something was definitely wrong. This couldn't be Kara. Her eyes were suddenly so cold and he still couldn't feel her.
Taking a few steps back, he slipped into a defensive stance and said, "You're not Kara."
Kara smiled and shimmered. The illusion around him vanished and was replaced by the cold dimension. "You can't be brought into my power," Zara said, her voice dangerously calm. She looked at him for a moment, then added, "But that doesn't matter. I can still get what I want."
"Don't bet on it!" Jason growled in reply.
Zara smiled, raised her hand, and shot a beam of energy at him. As though acting with a mind of it's own, Jason's palm shot up, and the star released it's own energy, slamming into Zara's. The two beams pushed back and forth until Zara gained the upper hand, casting a spell that blocked the star's power and stopping the beam abruptly.
Her energy slammed into him and threw him against the wall behind him. He slid to the floor, groaning in pain. He saw her approaching and pushed the pain away, lashing out with a fierce, painful kick to her leg. She cried out and buckled, but did not hit the floor.
"You'll pay for that one," she growled, and moved to kick his ribs.
He moved out of the way however, rolling and coming up behind her, where he got her with another blow that pushed her into the wall. She spun around, furry burring in her ice blue eyes. She struck him with another beam of energy, once again sending him to the floor.
She said something, but the ringing in his ears prevented him from hearing what. He looked up just in time to see Goldar appear in a flash of black flame.
"Yes my lady?" he growled.
"Goldar, seems Jason here needs to be taught a lesson in submission. I've got better things to do right now, so he's yours."
A gleeful glint entered the giant space ape's black eyes. "Thank you mistress. It would be an honor to cut him down to size for you."
Zara looked at Jason and flashed a smile that chilled him to the bone. "Don't kill him, that's to be my pleasure. And don't damage him beyond repair. I intend to get some good use out of him before I send him to hell."
She flashed him a pure predatory look, which Jason returned with an icy glare. "Have fun boys."
When she was gone, Goldar turned to Jason and said, "Greetings Gold Ranger. I'm going to enjoy this."
"I'm not afraid of you Goldar!" Jason said, slipping into a defensive stance.
Goldar smiled. "Wait for it Gold Ranger, wait for it."
* * *
Kat appeared on the roof of the Power Chamber and found Tommy, gazing up at the stars with a troubled look.
"Hey," she said softly as she sat next to him, "You all right?"
"I'm worried about Jason," he replied, his eyes never leaving the sky, "I've got this terrible feeling that he's in serious trouble."
Kat leaned her head on his shoulder and said, "I wish I could have found him. I probably would have if I had my full power instead of just a little part."
"Is that true, Kat?"
Kat raised her head and looked at him in confusion. "What do you mean?"
"Are you really not at full power?"
"Well of course not. You know that if I were you'd be the first to know."
There was something in Tommy's eyes as he looked at her that she didn't like.
"I don't know Kat. Weird things have been happening lately. Things that seem to be centered around you. Billy for instance. It's easy to see the guy's scared of you. Why is that?"
Their eyes met and Kat's flared with a pink energy. She held him in a hypnotic trance as she carefully cleansed his mind of his suspicions toward her.
When she finished, he blinked as she said, "Don't worry, I'm sure we'll find him."
She glanced at her watch and added, "It's late. I'm going home to get some rest. You should too. It's been a long day and who knows what tomorrow is going to be like."
Tommy nodded. "I'm going to stay up here a while longer. I'll see you in the morning."
As she teleported out, he noted with curiosity the jade tinge to her teleportation stream.
* * *
Tanya knew from the dejected look on Tommy's face that Jason had not yet been found when she teleported in late the next morning.
Which meant something had obviously happened to him. Which meant she had to tell Tommy what Jason had told her. "Tommy-" was all she said when the alarm went off.
"Man, its too early for her," Adam complained as the Green Ranger appeared on the view screen.
Tommy sighed. "Well, lets go engage her. Billy, contact Rocky."
As Billy moved to do so, the other four morphed and teleported out.
* * *
It was over an hour into the fight when Tanya noticed something; Kat reacted strangely whenever the Green Ranger took a hard hit. Acting on curiosity, Tanya drew her blaster, set it as high as she could, and while watching out for the many Tengas running around, aimed and fired.
The blast hit the Green Ranger in the shoulder and Tanya quickly looked at Kat.
The Pink Ranger was clutching the same shoulder and stumbling back, crying out in pain.
'My God, they're connected!' she thought, stunned. 'But how?'
"I think the Green Ranger is bogus," Jason's words came back to her, repeating over and over in her mind. 'Hmm, I wonder.'
Looking around, she spotted Adam finishing off the Tenga he was engaged with. "Adam!" she shouted, "Come here!"
"What's up?" he asked as he joined her.
"I need you to do something for me. Get your Zeo weapon out and fire as fast and as many times as you can at the Green Ranger. I'm going to try something."
Adam nodded and did as he was asked.
As he began firing, Tanya set her blaster to stun and fired three shots at Kat.
The Green Ranger's piercing, agonized scream as Adam fired his weapon relentlessly upon her, stopped the Battle cold. After a moment, Adam stopped his assault and the Rangers watched as the Green Ranger began shimmering.
Seconds later, her uniform melted away, and the Rangers gasped.
"Zara," Tommy growled from where he was kneeling next to Kat's still form, "I should have know you'd be this closely involved.
Zara smiled faintly. "Su-surprise," she stammered.
She then swayed and crumpled to the ground. The remaining Tengas squawked and hurried over to their unconscious mistress. They picked her up and disappeared. Seconds later, the Rangers vanished as well.
* * *
After being reassured that Kat was just stunned and not hurt, Tanya was able to get his attention.
"Tommy, can I talk to you?"
"Yeah, what's up?"
Tanya was about to reply, but decided against it. Instead, she nodded toward one of the other chambers.
Tommy frowned in confusion, but followed her into the next chamber. "Tanya what's wrong?" he asked when the door had slid shut behind him.
"Tommy, before Jason disappeared, he told me something. He said that if something happened to him, such as disappearing, that I was to tell you what he told me." She paused for a moment, then quickly told him what Jason had told her.
"And I think he's right," she finished, "All the evidence I've seen so far supports him. Kat is behind all this."
Tommy desperately wanted to say she was wrong. That Kat would never betray them like this. But in his heart, he knew she was right. He felt a stab of pain a second later when Billy said, "It's true. Kat is responsible for the destruction of the Chamber and Zordon's disappearance."
Behind him, Adam and Rocky traded astonished looks. Without waiting to be asked, Billy revealed the events that had occurred from the day of the battle with Fire Angel up to the present.
No one said a thing when he finished, so stunned were they.
"What's going on?"
They all looked toward the door as Kat entered and looked at them curiously.
Before anyone could reply, Billy had his communicator up to his mouth. "Alpha, now!"
"Hey!" Kat cried out as she was instantly encased in a force field, "What are you doing?"
"They know Kat," Billy said, "Tanya figured it out and broke your spell."
Kat's bewildered expression melted away to a small smirk. "So the game is over huh? Too bad, I was really enjoying it."
"Why Kat?" Tommy asked quietly, "Why did you do it?"
Kat sighed. "You mean join with Zara? You don't know? Billy, why don't you tell them."
"Kat..Kat is Zara's reincarnated sister."
Kat chuckled at the response that brought. "Look guys, I'd love to stick around and talk about why I'm doing this, but I'm getting really board, and I've got things to do now that I've been found out prematurely." She shot a chilling glare at Tanya. She touched the field and jumped as an electric current zapped her.
"Um, Rocky, you want to give me a hand here Hon?" Rocky, who was still in uniform but minus the helmet, drew his blaster and pointed it at Adam's head, his eyes flaring with red light. "Billy, turn off the field," he ordered, "Anyone try anything cute and it's Adam's head."
When Billy made no move to release Kat, Rocky shouted, "Do it!"
Billy looked at Tommy, who nodded.
Carefully, he raised his communicator to his lips and said, "Alpha, turn off the field."
A moment later, Kat was freed.
She looked at Rocky and said, "Bring Tanya. She's going to pay for ruining my fun."
"No!" Tommy exclaimed, stepping in front of Rocky. He looked at Kat and said, "If you want her, you'll have to go through me and to do that, you'll have to kill me."
Rocky instantly raised his blaster to Tommy's head, fully intent on pulling the trigger. Kat raised her hand though, stopping him. "Forget it, lets go."
As Rocky joined her, she looked at Tommy and said, "I'll see you soon. We have much we need to talk about."
Her gaze moved to Tanya and her eyes turned hard and cold. "As for you, I doubt you'll live through the night."
Before anyone could react, she raised her hand and a beam of energy shot out. Tanya screamed as the energy slammed into her chest and threw her into a far wall.
"Tanya!" Adam shouted, rushing to her crumpled form.
Kat laughed, then she and Rocky vanished.