Certain it is, the place still continues under the sway of some witching
power, that holds a spell over the minds of the good people, causing them
to walk in a continual reverie. They are given to all kinds of marvelous
beliefs; are subject to trances and visions, and frequently see strange
sights, and hear music and voices in the air. The whole neighborhood abounds
with local tales, haunted spots, and twilight superstitions; stars shoot
and meteors glare oftener across the valley than in any other part of the
country, and the nightmare, with her whole ninefold, seems to make it the
favorite scene of her gambols.
"The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," by Irving Washington
"This weather is wild." Corry Cranston pulled her jacket closer and looked around. Nothing. She could swear she felt someone watching her. "You're getting paranoid, Cranston," she muttered. Pulling her book bag over her shoulder she began the walk to Nisha Taylor's house. Early Autumn in Angel Grove was usually not that different from summer. Shorts were still the apparel of choice, and the only concession made to cooler weather might be socks and hiking books instead of sandals.
The wind gusted, blowing leaves off nearby trees and sending them rattling down the sidewalk ahead of Corry in a mini-whirlwind. Corry's hair whipped around as if it suddenly had a life of it's own. Gathering it, she pulled her hair into a ponytail and held the rope of hair as she walked.
_Great. I'll get to school and look like squirrels have been making nests in my hair._ Corry sighed. It was so quiet this early in the morning. Only the garbage men were out, crashing the dumpsters loudly as if trying to make sure everyone else was awake.
Thunder rumbled, echoing across the quiet neighborhood. Corry looked up with a frown. It was getting cloudy, the morning sky filling with huge black thunderheads. "So much for the forecast." The radio announcer had predicted clear skies with temperatures in the eighties. Picking up her pace, Corry began to jog. Maybe I can make it to Nisha's house before the rain starts falling.
A fat drop of rain hit her nose, followed closely by another, and another. Before Corry had jogged more than half a block, it started to pour. The rain sheeted down, falling as if God had turned on the rainbirds of heaven.
Thunder grumbled sullenly, building to a ear-splitting crack as lightening ripped across the sky. Corry cringed and lifted wary eyes to the sky. She gulped, seeing more lightening dance like eerie fireflies in the dark clouds.
For a moment, she froze as the hair on her arms and neck suddenly stood on end. Something she'd heard in a science class suddenly came to mind and Corry threw herself to one side, rolling across someone's soaked lawn. Lightning shot down, grounding into the side of the tree she had been standing next to, and wrapped tendrils of bolts around the tree like some weird vine. The boom that followed almost simultaneously was deafening, and the tree split apart into flaming halves.
Corry lay where she was, not caring she was getting even more wet. The smell of ozone mixed with that of burning bark and rainwater.
"Oh my Lord!" A woman, dressed in a robe, slippers on her feet, walked out on her porch. She surveyed the damage to her tree, then noticed the girl laying on her lawn looking stunned. "Hey! Are you okay, kid?"
Hair still full of static, Corry levered herself up and nodded. She climbed to her feet, still feeling a little shaky. That had been way too close!
Other neighbors, hearing the lightening, came out to see what was going on. Corry decided to get to Nisha's before anything else could happen. _Definitely gonna be a weird day!_
* * *
Thomas Oliver stepped outside and closed the door to the dojo behind him quietly. He pulled the hood of his jacket up and began to walk.
The city sounds were hushed by the sound of the falling rain and the woosh of the wind. Thomas didn't really notice. He walked along the rain-wet streets that reflected the storefront windows and marveled at the changes.
Changes from Colonial times -- that area over there had been the Wilkerson's orange orchard. Changes from twenty-one years ago -- the buses ran quiet and didn't stink! Amazing. Deciding to get out of the rain and see a little more of the city Thomas boarded the bus stopping ahead of him, paid his token and sat down to enjoy the ride.
* * *
Will Cranston frowned as he looked out the window. Something odd about this storm. He flipped on the radio. "Meteorologists are concerned at the severity of this storm this early in the season.
October is usually mild, yet scientists report there is a line of storms stretching from the gulf of Alaska all the way down to California, blanketing the whole West Coast. The storms are expected to get colder and stronger in severity. There is currently no consensus as to why these storms are occurring. Opinions range from global warming to the return of Rita and Zedd."
Shaking his head, Will turned the radio off and sat back. He would know if those two were back. He had been monitoring the moon for decades -- since the final defeat of Zedd. No. It had to be something else. Will smiled. Heck, it might even be something mundane for once!
* * *
Angel Grove High was teeming with teenagers laughing, joking and hurrying to reach their classes. Some things hadn't and probably never would change.
The Resource Center was Gavin Skullovich's favorite place to be on his study period. Since he usually finished his homework either in class or shortly after, this was free time to spend on what he liked.
"Hey!" Corry Cranston sat down across from him, smiling brightly. "Hello? Earth to Gavin..." She waved a hand in front of his face.
"Huh? Oh, hi Corry." Gavin grinned and pushed back those locks of hair that always wanted to fall into his face. "I was just thinking of another thing to add to my program."
"I've never seen anyone get as excited about Halloween as you." She pulled out her notebook and flipped up the tiny monitor.
Gavin's eyebrow's rose in surprise. "We have a haunted house every year."
"But you've been working on that program since August." Corry checked to make sure she had her next classes assignment ready to download then looked up. "Usually you can write one in no time flat." Curiosity lit her blue eyes. "What exactly are you planning?"
"Ahhh..." Gavin waggled his eyebrows and grinned maniacally. "You'll have to wait and see. This is gonna blow last year's house outta the water!"
"Unh-uh." Corry shook her head. "No way. You are not going to drag me in there. I almost died of fright last year!"
"Oh, come on." Gavin leaned forward, lowering his voice. "After facing wraiths how bad could this be?"
Corry crossed her arms, a stubborn look replacing her normally cheerful expression. "With you programming it?" She shook her head. "No way."
Gavin noticed the person at the next table seemed very interested in their conversation. He looked over at the guy, who quickly looked away. Hmmm. Seems like everywhere he saw Corry lately, this guy was tagging after. He scooted closer to Corry to whisper, "Not even if the new guy went with you?"
Her reaction surprised him. Her face blossomed into bright red. "Why would that make a difference?" Corry hoped it came out nonchalant. It probably didn't.
Gavin was definitely curious now. If she was so interested, why didn't she just go say hi? She wasn't exactly known for being shy. "He's right there." He tilted his head towards the table where the guy was sitting. "He keeps looking over here and I doubt very much he's checking me out."
"Oh...." Corry's eyes widened and she shot a glance over at the table Gavin had indicated. "I...uh..." Come on brain! Think of something intelligent! "But, he's a senior!" Lame. Totally lame.
Gavin blinked, sitting back to look at her for head injuries. Was there truly a blonde gene that rendered those afflicted silly at times? "Corry..." He shook his head. "We're seniors too, remember? How can you forget that test they made us take?"
Aw geez. The placement test! She and Gavin had both been bumped up to the senior class. "I...uh, guess I forgot." Corry couldn't look at him. She chewed on her lip and stared at her notebook.
She was spared any further reply as the bell rang. Gathering her notebook and book bag she waved, smiling. "See you in calculus." There was almost a smoke trail behind her she left so fast. Corry disappeared into the crowded hallways.
What was that all about? Gavin rolled his eyes as he gathered his things together. Girls. Who could figure them out?
* * *
"What is up with this weather?" Nisha Taylor scowled as she looked outside.
"Probably just El Nino acting up again." Corry pulled the hood on her rain jacket up. One more drenching. This was just not her day. "Come on, we're supposed to meet 'Livy in twenty minutes."
"We're gonna get blown out to sea!"
As the two girls left the building, the wind picked up, blowing rain sideways and drenching them in seconds. They struggled along the sidewalk, holding on to one another to keep from getting blown into the soggy grass. "It's like a hurricane!"
"Whatever you do, don't open an umbrella!" Corry grinned. "You'll be like Mary Poppins and fly away!"
Nisha shook her head. It never failed to amaze her how happy her friend was most of the time. Nisha knew she tended to be pessimistic, but in her own mind she thought of herself as a balance. The voice of practical reason in the face of her friends' jubilant daydreams.
They struggled along and finally made it to the Junior High where they met up with Olivia Park. Olivia giggled at the sight of her two drenched friends. "You guys look funny!"
"Just wait until you get out there." Nisha eyed her friends' curly hair. "You're gonna have hair like a wet poodle."
"Why don't we take the bus?" Corry pointed to the metro just pulling up.
"COME ON!" Nisha didn't wait for an answer, she just grabbed Olivia and dragged her out to the bus.
Dripping wet, the three girls put their tokens in the slot and looked for seats. "Thomas!" Olivia pushed her hair out of her face and grinned at the young man sitting in the back of the bus. The three made their way to sit with him. "Where you going?"
He grinned at the sight the three presented -- hair and clothing dripping wet. It was quite the contrast from their usual immaculate look. "Just riding around seeing how much the city has changed." Thomas shrugged. "Where are you going?"
"Ugh!" Corry grimaced at her image reflected in the window. "To the mall." She gave up trying to get her hair in place with a shrug. "Want to join us?"
"Yeah!" Olivia, sitting next to him, grabbed his arm. "Come with! You'll have fun."
Nisha eyed his clothing. Very retro. If you didn't know he was from the past you could certainly tell he dressed that way! Loose jeans, a muscle tee and a loose flannel shirt over that. "We could help you shop."
Thomas looked down and plucked at his shirt. "What's wrong with my clothes?"
"Yeah, at least his are dry." Corry shook her foot and her shoe made a sloshing noise.
"Too retro." Nisha shook her head.
"I think you look fine," Olivia declared. "But..." she grinned. "If you want to shop we're the ones to help you!"
"Besides, you can't just ride around on the metro system all day." Corry regarded him for a moment. "And we won't let you feel left out, so you might as well admit defeat and come with us."
"Okay," Thomas laughed, holding up his hands in surrender. "I guess it does beat riding this all day or hanging out with Zordon."
"I thought you were going to start working in the dojo with Mr. Scott?"
"Jase canceled all of today's classes because the weather is so severe. The power's been on and off in the dojo all day." Thomas shrugged. "That left me at loose ends."
Corry and Olivia exchanged knowing looks. There was probably more to it than that, but they were getting to know their newest friend pretty well. He probably didn't want to "bother" anyone. Then again, he was a bit of a loner. Corry shrugged. Didn't matter. He was coming with them now.
The bus pulled up to the mall and the four teens dashed out, managing to keep from getting too wet again. Thomas looked around. The mall had grown. Geez, like it hadn't been big enough back then!
"Where to first?" Corry asked Nisha.
"Second floor. Let's go check out that guy's store next to the Hallmark." Nisha smiled. "The one that had all the cute helpers...." She winked.
Olivia took one arm, Corry the other as they kept Thomas from backing away. He recalled the few times Kimberly had talked into going shopping with her. Seems like he'd always ended up official parcel carrier. "Maybe I'll just go -"
"Oh no." Nisha grabbed the edge of his shirt and used that to lead him forward. "Come on, be brave."
Like a man being led to the gallows, Thomas allowed himself to be guided by the three girls. It could be worse, he reflected glumly. I could be listening to Zordon tell me the history of Eltar -- again. Suddenly an afternoon at the mall didn't seem so bad.
* * *
"Oh, how cute! Look, 'Livy." Corry held up a toy. Olivia grinned. "A little Tuxedo Mask!" She took it and hugged it. "Not quite like the one in the cartoon though."
"Are you two coming or not?" Nisha tapped her foot impatiently. If allowed to, those two would spend an hour in the toy store.
"Bye Tuxie." Corry and Olivia laughed as they caught up to Nisha and Thomas. "We were just having some fun."
"I thought we were looking for clothes?" Nisha pointed to the store ahead.
"Oh no!" Olivia stopped. "My hair must look horrible! I can't let them see me like this!"
"Calm down." Corry pulled a comb out and began to comb out the mass of long curls.
"There." She grinned. "You look super." She didn't want to think how she must look. Probably like a drowned cat.
They entered the store and Nisha dragged Thomas off to look at up-to-date fashions while Corry and Olivia pretended to look through the shirts on a rack. "What about that one?" Olivia moved her head to indicate a cute blonde haired attendant not far from them.
"Mmm." Corry wrinkled her nose. "No chin."
Olivia almost giggled, but regained control. "Then...how about that one. Over by Nisha."
Corry held up a shirt and peeked around it. "Not bad." She winked at her friend. "Dare you to go ask him for help."
"No way!" Olivia's face turned pink. "I couldn't!"
"Why not?" Corry shook her head. It amazed her how shy Olivia could be. "Just go over and ask if they have this shirt in cyan. Odds are they don't, but you'll have his attention." She smiled encouragingly.
Olivia clenched her hands around the shirt she was holding, her heart pounding. She wished she could be more like Corry. Corry didn't know a stranger. "I can't." Her stomach churned.
"Okay, okay." Corry sighed. Someday she vowed to get Olivia over that paralyzing shyness of hers. Mr. Park , her father, was just as shy, until you got to know him. Then he was like a different person! "Then let's just - "
An irritating tingling on her wrist stopped her, and her eyes widened. Olivia nodded. "I need to go wash my hands. Want to go with?"
"Yeah." Corry caught Nisha's eye and nodded. They'd meet up. Thankfully no one was in the women's washroom when the entered. "Zordon, what's up?"
"PLEASE TELEPORT TO THE POWER CHAMBER IMMEDIATELY. WE HAVE A POSSIBLE CRISES ON OUR HANDS."
"On our way." In a flash of white and pink, the two girls disappeared.
* * *
Several seconds later they reappeared in the Power Chamber. Jared and Gavin were already there. "Where are Nisha and Thomas?"
"Following." Corry remembered belatedly that Raph was still visiting family in Mexico with his dad. Please, she prayed silently, don't let it be the wraiths again. They had barely escaped becoming wraiths themselves last time. Only the intervention of their spirit animals had kept that from happening.
"Whatever it is I hope it isn't too awful." Olivia looked at Alpha as the little robot came up to stand next to her.
"OUR SENSORS PICKED UP A LARGE OBJECT IN SPACE HEADING THIS WAY - "
Two flashes of color interrupted whatever Zordon had been going to say, as Thomas and Nisha 'ported in. "Sorry we're late."
"We had to ditch a pesty salesperson." Nisha said in disgust.
"RANGERS, " Zordon began again. "PLEASE OBSERVE THE HOLOGRAM." A blurry image popped up. It was impossible to make out what it was. Zordon watched their faces carefully, looking for signs of recognition.
"What is it?" Gavin asked. He shook his head. "Whatever it is, I would estimate it's moving at faster than light speeds."
Corry nodded. That would explain the poor image. Something about it though was naggingly familiar. She frowned and walked around the hologram. A large object, hmmm. Corry got the feeling Zordon knew exactly what it was. She stood next to Gavin. "Looks familiar."
"Yeah." He nodded absently.
Then it clicked. Her eyes widened as she looked at Zordon. "It's Pyramidas, isn't it?"
There was almost an audible sigh of relief from everyone. "So why are we playing twenty questions?" Nisha scowled at Zordon. What was he up to this time?
"WE HAVE TRIED HAILING PYRAMIDAS TO NO SUCCESS. IT IS HIGHLY UNLIKELY THAT TREY OF TRIFORIA WOULD NOT ANSWER OUR HAILS." Zordon waited. He wanted the team to draw their own conclusions from that, not be hand fed by him. He had done far too much of that in the past.
"Maybe he's hurt." Olivia suggested.
"That would explain why he never answered any of the other messages we sent before." Thomas began to prowl around the chamber.
Gavin turned and walked over to a console. He began to pull up figures and charts, staring intently at them. Corry joined him, curious to see what he was doing. "You think?"
He nodded. "It's a possibility."
"What?" Jared and NIsha joined them.
"It's just a theory, so please don't take it as an answer." Gavin hit several controls and a hologram of the sun popped up. "Sunspots. They are associated with geomagnetic disturbances. Right now they're more active than ever before in recorded history."
"You think they're interfering with our signals?" Jared didn't need to know all the science, he just wanted the bottom line.
"It's a possibility." Gavin shrugged.
Seeing the frustrated look overcoming Jared, Corry added, "I don't think there's any way to know for certain, Jared. Until Trey actually gets here."
"And if it isn't Trey?" He turned away, facing Zordon. "Could someone else use Pyramidas?"
"ONLY IF THEY HAD CONTROL OF THE GOLDEN POWER STAFF AND THE GOLDEN POWERS."
No one liked that answer. They were all silent for a moment. "How long before Pyramidas arrives?" Thomas prowled around the hologram of the ship as if looking for an answer in the blurry image.
"Approximately fifteen minutes." Alpha informed them.
"Then we'd better make sure the Zords are ready for action." Thomas walked over to the group. "Gavin showed us how to run preflight in the simulations. You guys willing to try it for real now?"
"Let's go." Jared was already walking for the chamber door that led to the Zord bays. Nisha, Gavin, and Olivia followed.
"You coming?" Thomas turned as Corry didn't move.
"In a moment. Go ahead, I'll catch up with you guys." Corry waited until they were out of the chamber then walked forward to Zordon's tube. She bit her lip. "Zordon?"
Shrinking from the usual large image to a more approximately human sized one, Zordon nodded. " What is bothering you, Corriane?"
She struggled for a moment as her fears rose up, choking her. Corry pushed them away. Steady girl. Can't fall to pieces yet. "You don't think...think that someone else has the Golden Powers...do you?" She looked up. "Trey and Chelsea are okay, right?"
He wanted to reassure her, tell her everything would be all right. Zordon knew better. This was not a child to be fed safe assurances. They had all given up that right upon becoming Rangers. This was a Power Ranger who needed to hear the truth to guide her actions. "We will not know until Pyramidas arrives."
Corry nodded, biting her lip so hard it drew a bead of blood. "All right then." She teleported out in a flash of white.
Zordon's gaze went to the cases in the back of the chamber. They held the Ranger suits of the previous team. It saddened him that this team also was learning the hard lessons of growing up quickly, but there was no other way. Earth needed the Rangers. "ALPHA," Zordon grew his image to its normal size again. "SEND ANOTHER TRANSMISSION TO PYRAMIDAS." And pray it is only sunspots, he added silently.
* * *
Corry 'ported in next to WolfZord and stood for a moment staring at it. It seemed unanimated enough. No flash in the red eyes. no spontaneous movement. No howl announcing it's presence.
"YOU GONNA STAND THERE ALL DAY STARING OR GET MOVING?" Nisha's voice, amplified, echoed through the bay.
Rolling her eyes, Corry turned and frowned at Nisha -- or rather Nisha's huge white BearZord. "You know, you have all the sensitivity of a gnat." Pulling her morpher from it's dimensional pocket she flipped it defiantly and caught it. "White Ranger Power!"
"IF YOU'RE DONE PLAYING, WE DO HAVE A POSSIBLE EMERGENCY ON OUR HANDS."
Corry stuck her tongue out, knowing Nisha couldn't see it with her helmet on. She turned and 'ported into the WolfZord. Sometimes Nisha was just too darn pushy. Deliberately leaving the com on audio only she powered up the Zord and ran it through a quick systems check.
"WolfZord on-line and ready."
"'Bout time, " Nisha grumbled.
"Can it," Jared snapped. "Save the sniping for later."
"Corry, " Gavin sounded concerned. "I'm not getting a visual on you. Are all WolfZord's systems 100%?"
Darn. Caught. "Uh, yeah, Gav. Hang on and I'll bring it up." A small holo popped up showing the other six Zord cockpits. Raph's was empty. Corry didn't like looking at it empty and closed the channel to the JaguarZord.
"Okay, heads up, gang." Thomas looked around the interior of the DragonZord, not used to controlling it from inside. He concentrated on imaging, remembering what he'd been told.
"One minute before Pyramidas enters Earth's gravity well.." Gavin reported.
Nisha was silent. Her hands gripped the BearZords' controls tightly as she cleared her mind of all but the possible battle. Her gaze was intent on the space in front of her as she focused herself.
Jared, already focused, felt as if the WolverineZord was a part of him. In a way it was --an extension that allowed him to perform incredible feats a human couldn't possibly pull off. It was an awesome feeling.
Gavin was watching the data scroll in on his heads-up display, his mind coolly calculating the best possible moment to move. His MongooseZord was one of the smallest, but it was also the fastest. He would be ready.
Olivia ran through the breathing exercises her father had shown her, trying to calm her thoughts enough to allow her to control the OwlZord. One thought, one mind, one purpose.
Corry also had the heads-up display on, along with the visual feed. She clenched her gloved hands into fists as it counted down. The thought of going up against Pyramidas almost made her feel sick. Please, please let them be all right. Underneath her she felt WolfZord shift slightly.
Thomas sat with his eyes closed. He was centered, calm. DragonZord was ready. It was almost time.
* * *
In the Power Chamber, Zordon and Alpha watched, silent, as the huge golden pyramid fell towards the Earth.
* * *
Gavin's voice suddenly cut through the silence. "I'm picking up some kind of interference around Pyramidas. Zordon, do you see it too?"
"WE ARE SCANNING NOW, RANGERS. PYRAMIDAS HAS A POWERFUL SHIELD. IT'S POSSIBLE THE DISTORTION YOU SEE IS ONLY -"
"It's wraiths!" Even as Corry spoke, WolfZord teleported out of the bay with an eerie howl that echoed in the bay.
"Shit!" Jared's focus evaporated as he looked wildly around. That howl had sent shivers up his spine.
"Let's go, Rangers!" DragonZord shimmered for a moment before teleporting out of the aqua bay with a mighty roar.
"I swear these new Zords have a mind of their own!" Nisha growled. "Maybe to make up for the half their pilot is missing!"
"Figure it out later. Let's go!" WolverineZord 'ported out, followed closely by the BearZord. Something like a sonic boom shook the bay as they left.
"This is odd," Gavin said, thinking out loud. "Come on, Olivia! Let's go before they get all the action."
OwlZord and MongooseZord disappeared from the bays with only a whisper of movement.
* * *
In the Power Chamber Zordon's expression became gravely serious. "MAY THE POWER PROTECT YOU, RANGERS."
* * *
Corry found herself suddenly outside of the Zord bay, far from Angel Grove's city limits. The Zord stood on a narrow strip of land overlooking the ocean on three sides. Oddly enough, it wasn't storming here.
_How did I get -- of course, you idiot. It mimics your thoughts!_ "360 display." The heads-up wrapped around, allowing her to see in every direction. Where is Pyramidas then?
WolfZord suddenly whirled around, wrenching her neck. "What the....?" Corry withheld further comments and wishes for later. Pyramidas was coming at her at a rapid rate, black stains clinging to it's sides like leeches. "Wraiths," she hissed. WolfZord growled, a low threatening sound she had heard before -- when it had faced her only days before.
"Okay. Let's go get us some wraiths."
* * *
Thomas held back an exclamation as he realized DragonZord had teleported into the ocean. Water surrounded him. "Let's see where we are." In response to his command the heads- up sprang to life. DragonZord was standing on a sandy bar, barely submerged, about one mile from the coast. "Where's Pyramidas?" The display wrapped around the cockpit, allowing him a full view. A red dot moving rapidly had to be the Gold Ranger's Zord.
Perfect. Thomas sent DragonZord forward, towards shore and turned it when they were only waist deep in the ocean. Pyramidas was heading straight for him, several shadows that were definitely not natural clinging to it. "Let's see if the wraiths like the taste of missiles."
As Pyramidas neared, Thomas relaxed further into the bond that allowed him to control the DragonZord. He forced himself to wait, relying on his battle sense and that of the Zord, to determine when to fire the missiles. "Fire." It was a whisper, barely heard over that of DragonZord's roaring challenge.
With a spurt of flame, four missiles shot off towards Pyramidas. At the last second the golden pyramid banked, presenting a perfect shot at three shadowy forms on it's side. All four missiles hit, two taking out the largest of the wraiths. It fell, it's shadow form flickering as the fire sought to consume it. The other two dropped off but then gave chase as Pyramidas rolled and shot off towards the shoreline.
"Damn!" Thomas sent the mental command to follow even as DragonZord began to move towards shore.
* * *
"Nice shooting," Corry commented. At least DragonZord was out here. She still hadn't seen any of the others yet. She felt WolfZord crouch as Pyramidas shot towards them. Two black shapes followed in its wake. "Let's see if we can get rid of those parasites, shall we?" A low growl was her answer.
Pyramidas shot overhead with a loud boom, as WolfZord leaped up. Jaws open, it snapped one of the wraiths right out of existence and brought the other one to ground. Not hesitating a moment, it whirled on the wraith and dispatched that one with a quick snap of it's jaws.
Corry blinked when the Zord howled. She looked around. Where...? It had all happened so fast. Frighteningly so. Keeping a tight control on her thoughts Corry sent WolfZord following after Pyramidas at a ground eating lope.
* * *
"Here they come!" Nisha dropped the BearZord back down on all fours. "Ready?"
"Oh yeah." Jared growled. He thought he heard the Zord echo the growl. "Bring it on."
They had teleported to the foothills outside of Angel Grove State Park. The hills were covered in dead grass, and scraggly scrub oaks. As the storm hit, wind and rain lashed at the two Zords, making visibility poor. They had to rely on instinct and instruments.
Pyramidas shot over and came back, skimming just over the ground. It hit several of the scrub oaks, but even that didn't faze the shadows clinging to its sides.
"It's slowing down!"
"Let's go!" Jared sent WolverineZord barreling towards Pyramidas, using the Zords' brute strength to leap at two wraiths clinging to the side. Claws ripped huge, gaping holes in the wraiths and they screamed in agony as they dropped off Pyramidas.
Nisha didn't hesitate to stand the BearZord up on two feet as several wraiths detached themselves from Pyramidas and shot towards her. She growled, hearing it echoed in the Zord, and used the Zords powerful claws to swipe one of the wraiths out of the air. It screamed and fell to the ground, still.
The other wraith swooped just out of reach, turning to come back for another try at her. Nisha set the BearZord down on all fours. "Bring it on, baby!" If that stupid shadow thought it could take over her, it had a lesson coming! Twin lasers shot out of BearZord's eyes, piercing the wraith. It disappeared in a puff.
Pyramidas rose and shot off.
"It's heading for that old box canyon!" Jared wasn't about to let those wraiths win.
WolverineZord took off in hot pursuit, followed closely by the BearZord.
* * *
"Where is it?" Gavin scanned on all bands. They had teleported out of they bays into the middle of nowhere. All he could tell is they were somewhere in the State Park. Where the others were was hard to determine. The storm was playing havoc with scanning.
"This is not my idea of fun!" Olivia definitely was not enjoying the up and down buffeting she was receiving from the storm. She had tried to think of it as a fair ride -- but rides were safe. This wasn't! "Gavin, I don't see - AGH!"
"Olivia!" Gavin spun MongooseZord around in time to see the OwlZord barely avoid a collision with Pyramidas. The gold pyramid headed for a canyon to their right. "Olivia, let's go!" "Right behind you." Her voice was shaking, but she wasn't about to quit.
Pyramidas set down hard in the box canyon, shaking the ground like a tremor would. "There it is!" Gavin saw the dark shapes clinging to the side of the pyramid and didn't hesitate. Moving fast, he used the storm and limited visibility to his advantage and pounced before the wraiths even knew he was there. Clawing and biting, the MongooseZord brought a wraith down and snapped it in two.
Olivia caught movement out of the corner of her eye and saw a wraith moving towards MongooseZord. Bracing herself, she set the OwlZord diving towards the wraith. Sharp talons raked across the wraith's form, tearing swathes of darkness out of it. With a scream, the wraith disappeared.
"Olivia, cover the top of the canyon so they can't get away." Gavin saw the WolfZord lope up with the WolverineZord and BearZord right behind. They spread out to cut off the only exit out of the canyon. BearZord reared up and roared a challenge.
Corry's eyes grew wide as the black forms began to merge into one gigantic ebony shadow that easily dwarfed their Zords. "Uh-oh. Maybe challenging it wasn't such a great idea, Nisha."
"Great, just great. Now what? We can't create MegaZord without Raph!" Jared's voice was edged in frustration.
"Don't think we need to. Look!"
As the monstrous ebony shadow loomed towards the four Zords, Pyramidas shot a beam into the air.
"Scatter!" Corry sent WolfZord scurrying sideways as the other Zords ran for cover.
Lightning, called down by Pyramidas, tore up the earth as it burned towards the Shadow. Too large to move fast enough, the Shadow tried to split apart again, but was caught in the lightning fury. For a moment there was nothing but flashes of super-bright light -- then stillness.
Corry lowered her arm and swallowed hard. WolfZord took a tentative step towards Pyramidas, it's head down as if scenting for something. "T-Trey?"
The familiar form of the Gold Ranger appeared on all their displays. "Rangers! Are you all right?"
The whole-hearted cheer that greeted him calmed his fears. He nodded. "Well-fought, Rangers of Earth. I am grateful for your help."
"Gold Ranger, will you join us back at the Power Chamber?" Jared hoped he sounded mature. Something about Trey just made him feel like the biggest novice.
"Let me move Pyramidas. Then I will join you."
The Gold Ranger's image faded off the display and Corry grinned happily. "Cool!"
"Hey, guys!" Thomas' voice and image came on. "What's going on? I think I missed the party."
"Where are you, man?" The victory and the feeling of relief made Jared laugh.
"DragonZord doesn't move all that fast if you hadn't noticed." Thomas' dry reply made Olivia giggle. "We're on our way in."
"Okay, I'll see you there."
"Let's go home!"
* * *
Zordon was relieved as the team teleported back in to the Zord Bays. The Rangers were safe, the Zords were whole. What else could he have hoped for? He smiled at the two guests waiting for the Rangers to arrive. Whatever he had been prepared to say was cut off as the Power Chamber door opened and a group of five laughing Rangers walked in, still morphed.
One whooped in joy and ran at the two young adults who had startled looks on their faces. Corry pulled off her helmet and tossed it aside to throw herself at Trey and Chelsea. "I can't believe you both came this time!"
Rocked back by the enthusiasm of her greeting, Trey and Chelsea caught the teen up and barely managed not to be strangled. "Easy, Corry."
Chelsea laughed and held the teen away. "Let me look at you!"
"We thought you were someone else because you didn't respond to our calls and then we thought we were going to have to fight you but then you actually helped us!" Corry took a breath and suddenly stopped, her eyes widening as something occurred to her. "Oh boy."
"What?" Chelsea shook her head, amused by the enthusiasm. She looked over at Trey who was greeting the other Rangers who had already demorphed.
"Um..." Corry bit her lip, taking Chelsea's arm to lead her over to Zordon's column. "There's something I need to tell you." She glanced at Zordon and bit her lip before taking a deep breath. This had to be done fast! He would be there any minute. "You know our parents were turned into wraiths and we were given the Ranger Powers and Trey helped us?" At Chelsea's nod, she continued. "Well, then Trey had to leave, and we were desperate for help and ...." Corry swallowed hard. Oh man! How....? She decided to spit it out in one quick sentence."IwentbackintimeandfoundTommy'scloneandbroughthimforwardtothistime. " There!
>From the dumbfounded expression on Chelsea's face, Corry couldn't tell if she was shocked by the revelation or hadn't understood. "Um..." She glanced over at Trey and saw he understood.
He was pale beneath his normal tan as he stared at her in disbelief. "You did what?"
Corry bit her lip, tears starting in her eyes. "I know. We didn't think about it at the time! We were really desperate." She clenched her hands as Trey walked over to stand next to his wife.
"Is he here?" Concern replaced his shock.
"He who?" Chelsea looked from one to the other, still trying to figure out what gibberish Corry had spit out.
Before either of them could say another word the Power Chamber doors opened and the Green Ranger walked in. "Hey guys! That was --" Thomas stopped, seeing how quiet they all were. "What's wrong?"
"Oh my God." Chelsea pulled away from Trey to walk slowly past the Rangers before her. She knew that voice. Knew it as well as her name. It had haunted her dreams for years. It was impossible.
* * *
Thomas stared, frozen in place as Chelsea walked towards him. "C-Chelsea." He hadn't expected to ever see her again after the Rangers had told him she had married Trey of Triforia.
"Tommy?" Chelsea was confused. She'd seen her brother's body, and knew he was dead. Teddy had been the only other Green Ranger since -- so how?
"Power down." Thomas stood before Chelsea Oliver, an expression of infinite sadness on his face. "I'm not Tommy, Chelsea. I'm his clone, Thomas."
"Thomas?" She whispered it, still not believing. Oh sure, she knew about the clone -- she'd read the account in Tommy's journal. But knowing and being face to face with the living, breathing reincarnation of her brother -- those were two very different matters!
Slowly, as if afraid he'd disappear, Chelsea reached up to gently touch his face. His skin was warm and solid. No apparition could ever be so real. The hair as silky as she remembered, if shorter. The brown eyes -- deep and so warm. Full of tears right now. Chelsea felt her own eyes fill with tears in response. She and Tommy had called themselves twins because they shared the same birthdate, even down to the year, and their resemblance was uncanny.
This was like having her brother -- her twin -- back. It was like walking through a mirror and finding yourself looking back at the way things had been twenty-one years ago.
* * *
Thomas hadn't moved. He barely dared to breathe, afraid of breaking the moment. Memories swamped his mind; of climbing trees; riding their bikes down the middle of the street; swimming in the lake; flying kites; starting school. She had been one of his best friends and his sister. She had never treated him like he was adopted, or rubbed it in his face. Not even once. And now, he was hurting her with the memory of a brother who had died years before.
He shook his head, one tear spilling down his cheek. "I'm sorry, Chelse."
Chelsea blinked and shook her head. "Don't be." She smiled, a funny kind of bittersweet smile. "I'm not mad. I was just surprised." Reaching up again, she wiped away the tear. "I didn't know I was going to get a second time aro und with my brother."
Trey sighed in relief as the two hugged. For a moment, he had thought the reunion would end with both feeling badly. He slanted a look a Corry and smiled. "Looks like it will be just fine."
She nodded uncertainly. "Yeah. But what about his parents?"
"Oh." Trey was silent a moment. "Perhaps you could get your mother and Chelsea to act as intermediaries?"
"What?" Nisha gave Trey an odd look. He was just too formal sometimes!
"My mom and Chelsea could smooth things over with the Olivers before they meet Thomas." Corry sighed. This was something she had never considered when she'd asked Thomas to come forward in time to help them out. "We were so shortsighted."
"We were desperate," Jared corrected. He squeezed her shoulder. "If it makes you feel better, none of us thought about this part of it."
"We were too worried about our parents," Olivia agreed.
"But it was my stupid idea," Corry argued. Sighing heavily, she powered down. "I have to get going, you guys. It's almost six." Before the others could argue, she 'ported out.
"Let her go." Gavin sighed. He knew Corry probably better than the others. "She's feeling guilty. Seeing them," he gestured to Thomas and Chelsea. "is bringing the impact of what we did home."
"That's probably true." Olivia nodded. "The Olivers are like second grandparents to Corry and her brother and sister."
"Speaking of which," Jared scratched his chin. "I haven't seen the little spores around lately. Where are they?"
"In France still, visiting Mrs. Cranston's mom." Gavin grinned. "Track school hasn't started yet for them. Good thing or we would've had to contend with the twins from hell when our parents were missing."
"They are not that bad!" Olivia said indignantly.
"Oh yeah?" Nisha cocked her head. "Then how come you never baby-sit for them? Corry always gets stuck with it."
"Uh... Well, I - " Olivia brought her watch up. "Look at the time! Gotta go!" She teleported out in a flash of pink.
"Chicken." Nisha grinned. "I have to go too. See you tomorrow."
Jared turned to Trey as Nisha 'ported out. "Will you be all right in Pyramidas then? We have plenty of room at my house." He shrugged. "Thomas has been staying with us since we got our parents back."
"Thank you, Jared." Trey smiled. "The offer is kind, but we will be fine." He looked over to where the two were still engrossed in their conversation. "It looks as though they have much catching up to do."
"All right." Jared nodded. "You know how to contact us if you need anything."
"I need to go too," Gavin said. "Don't leave without letting us know, okay?"
"I will not." Trey stepped back as the two teleported out. He looked to Zordon and shook his head. "Already I begin to see a powerful team shaping up. They worked well together today."
"YES, THEY DID." Zordon nodded.
"The wraiths are growing more powerful -- and bold. They attacked Pyramidas when I was still light years from Pluto." Trey frowned. "I sense them drawing some power from the very planet itself."
Trey's words caught Thomas' attention and he and Chelsea joined Trey. "They're draining the earth?"
"Not directly." Trey shook his head. "It's just an impression I got when Pyramidas touched down."
"Why don't we go back to Pyramidas?" Chelsea smiled at them both. "Thomas has never seen it and it's more comfortable." She turned to Zordon. "No offense."
"NONE TAKEN." Zordon smiled. It was good to see Thomas looking happy. "WE WILL MONITOR THE SITUATION, BUT I DO NOT EXPECT THE WRAITHS TO TRY AGAIN SOON."
"Hope not." Thomas nodded. "I'll have my communicator on if you need to reach us."
Chelsea took his arm. "You can't visualize where you're going if you've never been there. Leave this one to me." The trio vanished in a flash of gold and green light.
* * *
Gavin gave up working on his program. His mind kept going back over the day's events. Somehow he suspected the sunspots tied to the wraiths' activities -- he just couldn't figure out how. Hand cupping his chin, he stared out his bedroom window at the waxing moon. It would be full for Halloween. Too bad it wasn't as easy to pinpoint trouble as it was in the old days. The moon had always been the source of trouble back then -- if only because of the inhabitants.
_If only we could pinpoint the wraith's base. We could monitor them, predict when an attack is coming._
Gavin sighed. He and Alpha had worked on a program to do just that, but it wasn't working. The wraiths still came seemingly out of nowhere and left the same way. _How do you track a shadow?_
Well, at least we'll have fun on Halloween. Gavin grinned. Just wait. This will be a haunted house they'll talk about for years! Still grinning, he went back to work on the program.
* * *
"Hey, buddy!" Jared sat back and smiled at Raph's image on the computer monitor. "You missed some excitement today."
Raphael De Santos' smile faded into concern. "What happened? Is everyone okay?"
"Fine, so don't worry. Trey's back." Jared saw the concern ease slightly on his friends' face. "We helped each other out this time." It pleased Jared that the team had been able to stand on it's own this time -- almost. As much as he admired the Gold Ranger, he didn't want to keep getting bailed out by him.
"Then the new...uh...you know..." Raph looked around then leaned forward. "The new Zords worked?" He was whispering.
"Yeah, one hundred percent!" Jared grinned. "Your cousins still hanging on you?"
"'Course." Raph said shaking his head. "You'd think I was starving the way Tia Anna feeds me and fusses. My cousins are just as bad."
"Aw, poor baby," Jared mocked. He loved the De Santos family. They were a huge, boisterous clan that didn't know a stranger. "When will you be home?"
"In a couple days."
"Well, we'll try to save some of the fight for you." Jared grinned. "Don't wait too long!"
"Yeah, you just want me to bring back some homemade tortillas and salsa!" Raph's smile widened. "I'll see what I can do, amigo. Say hi to everyone for me."
The computer screen went black as the call ended and Jared leaned his chair back. It would be good to have Raph back and to have the team at full-strength. Then maybe they could show the Gold Ranger how capable they were!
* * *
Nisha rotated the hologram, frowning. Her first design was due tomorrow and she didn't want the instructor to find any flaws in it because she was careless. She needed to get high marks this year if she was going to get accepted into that Fine Arts college back east.
With a critical eye, Nisha went over the hologram. Was it original enough? Did it go too far?
Tossing her long braids back, Nisha sat on her bed and watched the holo rotate. She yawned and glanced at the clock. Only eight-thirty! That fight today had taken more out of her than she realized -- that and the drenching earlier in the day.
As if on cue, rain began to pound against the windows. The tree outside her window shivered as it branches lashed side to side in the wind.
Nisha got up and closed the curtain. Seeing the dark shape of the tree's silhouette only reminded her of the wraiths. She was thoroughly sick of thinking about the creatures and their effect on her.
With a determined frown, she went back to work on the hologram.
* * *
Olivia chewed on the end of her stylus. She was supposed to be doing her homework, but even math couldn't keep her mind occupied tonight. What were they going to do about telling the Olivers about Thomas? It would be a horrible shock, no doubt.
She and Corry had talked about the dilemma only an hour ago, on the phone, but neither one of them had come up with a good plan. There just wasn't an easy or good way to handle this. Olivia knew that more than anything had made Corry sad. She'd tried to cheer her up by discussing what they would dress up as for Halloween, but it had been pretty much a one-sided conversation.
_What can I do?_ Olivia sighed. _So much for being the wise owl. I can't even cheer up my best friend!_
Wind began to whistle through the trees outside and Olivia got up to walk to the window. Maybe it was just the weather depressing them. "Rain, rain, go away...."
Picking up Vel, she squeezed the stuffed rabbit then set it back down and turned again to her homework.
* * *
"Hey, pumpkin." Will Cranston stuck his head through the crack of the open door. "Want to go for a run?"
Stretching Corry nodded. "Yep. Just finished my homework."
"Get ready, and we'll go."
A few minutes later father and daughter were out on their nightly patrol of the neighborhood. The weather had cleared, leaving the air smelling fresh. As they jogged along, Will slanted a look sideways. "You're being awful quiet tonight."
"Want to talk about it? It might help." Will was beginning to realize she probably wouldn't come to him or Kim with every little thing like she had all her life. She was going to be sixteen in December. Sixteen, a Ranger -- she was already so grown up in some ways it scared him. He remembered that time as exhilarating, but frightening in it's complexity at times.
"Dad...is life always going to be this confusing?"
He hesitated, choosing his words carefully. "Life is never simple -- not if you're living it to the fullest. Some things are crystal clear and it's easy to see the black and white. Others are more complex, more grey." Will shook his head. "Your mom and I still struggle with things sometimes, Corry."
"But you always do the right thing." Corry slowed and stopped. "I can't seem to do anything lately without it affecting something else!"
Will stopped also. "Is this about you bringing Thomas forward?"
Corry nodded, staring at the ground. "Trey and Chelsea came back today and I had to tell her. She was so upset!" She sniffed and started walking. "I realized I had never even stopped to consider anything or anyone. We just did what we thought was best for us."
"Did it work out for Chelsea?"
"Yeah, thank goodness!" Corry shrugged. "But I have to tell the Olivers, Dad. I keep thinking how upset they're gonna be -- and Teddy. And David and Kat." Tears ran down her face. "All of this because of my stupid idea!"
"Stop there." Will turned her to face him. "Was it really so stupid? Thomas really didn't belong in Colonial times either, so you can let go of the argument of upsetting the time stream. Two, Thomas is eighteen and quite capable of making his own decisions. He didn't have to go with you. It was his decision. Don't feel like you pressured him."
"But Dad," Guilt filled her eyes. "I never considered why I went. What if I knew that out of all of the Rangers I had the best chance of convincing him because of who my mom is?"
"Is that why you went?"
"No." Corry rolled her eyes. "It never even occurred to me until today. I grew up with mom loving you. Why would it even occur to me to play off her feelings for someone else from ages ago?" Corry waved her hand dismissively.
"Then I'd say that throws out that argument." Will smiled slightly.
"I just wish..." Corry drew in a calming breath. "That I had stopped to consider the consequences. Not just for me or the Rangers. For everyone."
Will kissed her forehead. "You learned a valuable lesson then. One your mother and I could never teach even if we lectured you for years."
"I don't like learning this way, Dad." Corry leaned her head against her father's shoulder. "It hurts too much."
"I know, pumpkin. I know." Will put his arm around her as they continued walking. All her life to this point, he had protected her, sheltered her from the harsher lessons of life. Now he had to start letting go. "If you only remember one thing, Corry, remember you can always come to me or your mom. No matter what, no matter when. Promise me that?" He held out his hand.
"Promise." Corry grinned and hooked her pinkie finger around his. It was a game they'd played all her life, but this time she knew he meant it. The wind picked up, promising rain wasn't far behind. "Race you back!"
"You're on!" Then again, Will thought, some things never changed.
* * *
Trey left Chelsea sleeping peacefully and padded out of the room silently. He knew he'd find his brother-in-law awake. Thomas shared Tommy's habit of insomnia when things were bothering him. And Trey had never seen a human being with so much weighing him down as this young man.
He found him, as he'd thought he would, outside. "The stars are beautiful out here, away from the city lights."
Thomas whirled as Trey spoke, and blinked in surprise at him. "Oh -- did I set off an alarm or something coming out here?"
"No." Trey smiled in reassurance. He sat on an outcropping of rock, Pyramidas' comforting bulk directly behind.
Thomas sat also. He hesitated, then quietly spoke. "It's good to see Chelse so happy. You must be good for her."
"Thank you." Trey said. A ghost of a smile flickered around his mouth. There was more Thomas wanted to say, but was holding back. "You are wondering why she looks no different, perhaps?"
"She explained about the Golden Power Staff expanding her lifetime." Thomas shrugged.
Trey nodded. So it wasn't that. Well, Thomas was proving to be as difficult to draw into a conversation as Tommy had been -- at least when the topic was himself. How one-souled beings could be so complex was something Trey was still marveling at.
"Have you seen Teddy recently?" Thomas had tried to make the question sound casual. He winced, hearing the rasp in his voice.
"Not for some time, no." Trey turned to look at the young man's profile. It was tight in an effort to control the emotions he sensed churning inside. He wanted to help him somehow -- not just in winning back the Earth from the wraiths. In that battle he knew his assistance would be appreciated.
There was another, quieter battle raging inside the young man. It was no less serious. "Thomas, once you helped me regain me wholeness. Will you not let me return the favor?"
"That wasn't me, Trey." Thomas' voice was quiet. He didn't even have memories of that - - it had happened after he went to the Colonies. Chelsea had told him how Trey had come to Earth to aid in the fight against the Machine Empire and had ended up in need of help. The Rangers had been able to assist in re-merging his three souls.
"You are Chelsea's brother, Thomas Oliver." Trey smiled slightly as if something was funny to him. "And you are more like him than perhaps you realize. Please," he held up a hand to forestall a protest he saw forming. "I was never able to repay Tommy for helping me. The other Rangers, yes, but Tommy was gone before an opportunity came up." He leaned a little closer.
"Trust me, Thomas, I know what it is to not feel whole." He gripped the young man's shoulder. "And Triforians have more experience in living with three separate yet whole parts."
"I don't have three souls, Trey." Thomas sighed. "I'm not even sure I have one."
"Thomas - " Trey's grip tightened. "I have lived longer than any of your friends, almost as long as Zordon. You would not be the person you are if you were soulless. Please, trust me. Triforians are very knowledgeable about such things." He smiled.
Thomas looked over at him, wanting to believe. This had gnawed at him since he taken his first breath. Could a clone have a soul?
Seeing the doubt lingering in the dark eyes, Trey decided it was time to dispel it. "Thomas, you are a Ranger, are you not?"
"Yes..." Where was he going with this? Another pep talk?
"Then you do something no soulless creation could ever do. All of the monsters and creatures Zedd and Rita ever made were never able to do what you do whenever you morph. They were bestowed power of a kind, but not from the Grid." Trey was very serious as he stared into the young man's dark eyes. "Zordon has never fully explained it to the Rangers of Earth for his own reasons, but you are part of my family now. What do you think the morphin grid was? Where did it get it's power?"
Thomas shook his head. This was a question Will would be better suited to answer -- or Gavin.
"The old grid was destroyed, for the best. It's passing allowed the next generation of Rangers to tap directly into the actual Power -- not just a byproduct." Trey's dark eyes gleamed as he spoke. "Thomas Oliver, when you morph you tap into the very Grid of Life."
Thomas stared, poleaxed. "Wha...?"
"So for you to tell me you think yourself soulless -- " Trey shook his head. "It is impossible."
Impossible. The words his guardian animal had spoken combined with Trey's words to echo and jumble in Thomas' mind.
Trey nodded seeing the doubt replaced with hope and confidence -- the quiet sureness of someone in the right. "You have, in a sense, been three people. The evil Green Ranger you were when the wizard first created you, then the young man who lived in Colonial Angel Grove, and now, Thomas Oliver the Green Ranger of current time. Are those three the same?"
There was no easy answer. Part of him said yes, of course. The other said no -- they were as different as night is to day.
Trey stood. "You are no longer just the clone, neither are you the colonist who could live in obscurity when no one knew who Tommy Oliver was. To have peace with yourself, you must discover who you are and what that means to you Thomas." He looked back at Pyramidas. "And you must learn how that person fits into the lives of those around you."
Thomas stood slowly. It sounded almost more than any person could hope to accomplish.
"I did not say you must do it alone." Trey smiled again. "Did I not say you were family now? You also have friends who care for you."
Words spoken by firelight once again came to mind, but for a different reason. "Nothing is impossible...."
Trey nodded. "Dulcea is a wise woman." He yawned suddenly. "Stay if you like. Pyramidas will admit you when you are ready to come inside."
"I think I will." Thomas turned. "Trey -- " He smiled. "Thank you."
Trey nodded and disappeared inside Pyramidas. It wouldn't be easy. Nothing ever worth gaining is, a little voice reminded him.
* * *
Thomas walked over to a rock and sat, thinking, watching the stars fade as dawn began to bloom on the horizon. Lost in thought, he almost missed seeing the first flash of sunrise over the desert.
In the east the sun peeked over the wind-sculpted rocks, bathing the sky in it's warm golden hues. Before long, the cool desert air would begin to heat up.
Thomas stood and stretched -- then looked again. The gold of sunrise was beginning to take on a pinkish hue. He frowned. Usually that color didn't arrive until sunset, along with the oranges and purples that made it such a wonderful sight to watch as the sun sank into the Pacific Ocean.
It was there, and steadily turning red as the sun rose.
_All right._ Thomas nodded. The warnings were clear enough. No need to ignore the clamoring voices inside his mind, or allow them to be hushed by the soothing words of others. They needed to act, and soon.
He lifted his wrist and pushed a button on his communicator. "Zordon, this is Thomas."