Angel Grove sure is a weird place, she thought, picking her the remote to browse through the television channels. Nothing all that interesting was really on; it was too late at night. She paused briefly at a local news station, watching a repeated report on the adventures of the Power Rangers. Power Rangers. Her eyes flickered briefly to the image of the mysterious Gold Ranger and she sighed. Ever since she'd seen him on the news for the first time, she'd felt attracted to him. It made not the least bit of sense, and she had tried her level best to avoid seeing him on the news or anywhere, but it didn't change a thing.
Not in love, not in love, not in love, she repeated to herself frequently, turning the set off and sipping at her chocolate. You can't be in love with someone you haven't met and don't know and have just barely seen on the screen.
She brushed back her blonde hair and stared without seeing at the book in front of her. It was a romance. Two people who had never before met, yet they fell in love at first sight. She came close to throwing it out of the window. I think the universe is laughing at me. I really do.
The book fell carelessly to the floor as she stretched and turned her gaze to the ceiling overhead, and to the sky just barely visible through the window. She sighed deeply. She had been in Angel Grove for a month now, and the only people who had talked to her at all were Eddie and his gang. She had seen other people move in and everyone was friendly to them. What was it that she lacked?
With another sigh, she turned over, her hand falling limply out in dejection to strike her radio. The song that came on made her want to scream and throw things: badly.
The room was dark, not just with the night, but with the fact her eyes were shut. She breathed deeply and slowly, letting her mind gently relax and float away. She was going to sleep. She was going to forget this idiocy.
She was wide awake, clenching at the sides of the bed, her heart pounding, because she had just seen a powerful light sweeping down from the sky and heard something rather noisy landing in the backyard. I..w..what...
Fear clutched at her heart, but Emily didn't, or couldn't, stop herself from swinging out of bed, pulling a pair of jeans and a blouse on, and heading to the back door. She was alone in the house; her mom and dad had went upstate to pick up the last of their things for the move and wouldn't be back for a couple of days yet. She rather enjoyed the thought of being by herself, and had more than enough common sense not to let Eddie know about that. He was a nice guy, if somewhat rowdy, but he'd be after her to let him "visit" while they were away, and that was something she just wasn't prepared for.
Slowly she peered through the back peephole, and her eyes widened. This ranked up there in the amazing category.
She was staring at Pyramidus, the Zord of the Gold Ranger.
Of course, landing here wasn't all that marvelous either. He had managed to help out the local Rangers a few times already, and that was worthwhile in itself, but he wasn't planning on staying that long. That was one of the reasons he had kept his identity a secret.
That is, I wasn't planning on staying. He stared at the controls, wondering if it were somehow possible the Rangers could help him fix this thing. He knew next to nothing about putting his Zord back together; that had always been Treveith's job. Was Treveith's job. He's on Triforia, I'm here, and now I've got to find a mechanic who can figure out quantum physics and how they relate to Pyramidus before this thing blows up on me!
Trey hissed a little beneath his breath, then turned to look out the viewport of his vessel. Pyramidus might look completely impenetrable, and was, from the outside. From the inside, however, he was able to see out and detect just about everything. What he was detecting at the moment, however, wasn't good. He had landed in someone's back yard. Someone who was even now staring at them through the door as it opened up.
That tears it. Today has got to be the worst day of my entire....Trey's thoughts stumbled to a halt as he adjusted his interior sensors to give him a better look at whoever it was that was staring at this alien lifeform in their personal area. Hold everything. I take that back. Today is the best day of my entire life!
Standing in the doorway, the door in hand, was a blonde human female. Her eyes were wide, and her mouth slightly open in shock. Trey would have killed or died for her just as their eyes met. He had to meet her; he had to know her name. All the rules he'd been going by since he had left his world vanished completely and utterly out of his mind. He hungered for her name, for her history, to know everything about her, to tell her everything about him. The very thought of leaving this world without her became anathema to him. He would sooner leave without his right arm.
In a flash of gold and black, he teleported down to stand in front of her. Three words fell out of his wondering mouth.
"Who are you?"
Then he was standing in front of her, in that same full out uniform she had seen so many times on the news. "Who are you?" his voice was deep and rich, sending chills of delight down her spine. "I won't hurt you..."
Her heart spasmed with joy. "I'm Emily...Emily Gibson. Who...who are you?" I'm dreaming...and I don't want to wake up. Ever.
The Gold Ranger glanced down, as if just now realizing that he was in his uniform. A light golden light passed over him, and when it faded, a tall young man with dark hair and dark eyes stood there. He wore a strange gold and black tunic with what looked like a white undershirt peeking through the opening at his chest, black leather arm guards, and a tattoo over one eye. His legs were covered by black trousers and boots that had golden trim on the tops of it. There was a strange golden staff he was carrying in one hand, and his eyes were fastened on hers as if they held the secrets to all creation in them.
"I'm Trey, Lor---Trey of Triforia." He corrected himself swiftly, and she saw how his eyes saddened for just a moment. "It's...it's nice to meet you." He had heard how some humans introduced themselves, and those were the words they used. Though quite frequently, they didn't sound this hesitant.
Emily glanced over his shoulder. "Is there anything you can do so everyone doesn't notice the rather large spaceship in my back yard? Why did you crash anyway? Don't you have a driver's license?"
"Driver's license?" he repeated. "What's that?"
She smiled. "Don't worry about it. But I really don't want to have to answer questions about why your Zord is taking up nine-tenths of my yard space."
Trey bent his lips weakly, then turned to raise the staff. A pale golden light shone out from it, and a moment later everything looked as if Pyramidus had never landed. "How is that?"
"Thank you." She tried to think of what could possibly happen next and her mind settled on one thing. "Would you like to come in?"
What neither of them knew, and Trey would have definitely cared if he had known, was that high above them, three pairs of glowing evil eyes were watching the newly formed happy couple. Mondo, Machina, and Sprocket of the Machine Empire had finally learned something they'd wanted for almost two months: the identity of the Gold Ranger.
"I think I shall spew oil! How dare that Gold Ranger associate with a human girl!" Mondo had no emotions as humans understood them, but the very thought of his enemy being happy in any way was enough to make him feel as if he needed a tune-up.
Machina put a graceful metallic hand on her husband's shoulder. "But remember, my metallic menace, that an organic creature can be controlled through their emotions. If we can capture the girl, then we can have what you want: the Gold Ranger's power at your command! If he truly has "emotions" for her, then he will do nothing that would result in her being harmed!"
"Yuck, emotions are icky!" Sprocket piped up. It was far past his normal recharging time, but this was considered a special occasion because of the revealing of the Gold Ranger. Mondo and Machina tended to be lenient parents on occasion. "Can't we make 'em go away, Pop?"
Mondo stared at the viewscreen revealing the Triforian Prince and the human girl, seated in her home and talking with one another. He had spied a battle earlier that evening in the upper atmosphere; the Gold Ranger versus some Barox Bounty Hunters, and he was beginning to wonder just who it was that had hired them. It wasn't me, I know. But who could want the Gold Ranger that badly, other than me?
With a shake of his head he dismissed that line of thought. "Dispatch the Cogs at once!" he decreed. "I want that girl the Gold Ranger's with to be captured and brought here at once!" A perfectly evil plan occurred to him just as it did. "And if you have the chance...." He quickly told Klank, who had shuffled up at the first echo of his bellow, what he was thinking of. The old majordomo bowed low and quickly.
"As you wish, m'lord, as you wish!"
"Do you know who the Power Rangers are, Emily?" Trey asked softly, looking at her from where he was on the other side of the couch.
She raised an eyebrow. "No one knows who they are. I don't know what it's like...out there." She glanced up at the stars, then back at him. "But here, no one has any idea who the Rangers are. They're just...the Power Rangers."
Trey smiled quietly at her, then frowned. "I'm going to need to somehow get in contact with the Rangers. Pyramidus has been damaged, and they are the only hope I have of repairing it before Mondo or the Barox can attack again."
She nodded; he'd explained how things stood to her. She had known only that these strange metal things attacked every now and then, and that the Rangers dealt with the monsters. Now she knew at least what Mondo, the Machine Empire, and the Barox were.
"I wish I could contact them for you." She told him. "I don't want you to be hurt." The thought of expressing her emotions so openly was something that she would never have considered the day before...just hours before, but it seemed absolutely natural and perfect now. Trey would never hurt her.
The Gold Ranger considered. "I might be able to contact them, if my communications equipment is still working." He said, standing up. "I don't want them to find me here, though, I don't want to bring you into the danger."
Emily's eyes slightly hardened. "Trey, I was 'brought into the danger' the moment I was born, because I was born to fall in love with you! The only difference is, now we both know it! For all we know, the bad guys are watching us now and know about us!"
Trey bit his lip; he knew she was right. "I..." he got no further than that, however, because that was just when a purple cog-shaped ring whirled into existence in the room, depositing a round dozen Cogs right in the middle of everything.
"I wasn't serious!" Emily shouted, jumping up to run to Trey. "I didn't mean it!" I didn't think they really were watching us! Me and my big mouth!
The Gold Ranger thrust one hand out, summoning the Golden Power Staff as he did so. "Get to Pyramidus, Emily! Pyramidus, voice activation codes now!" He rattled off something in Triforian, then pushed Emily towards the door. "Go! It'll let you in, but keep them out!"
Without another glance at her, Trey leaped into the fight, slamming his fists as hard as he could again the metallic bodies of the Cogs. "You are not going to interfere in my love life!" he growled. "I won't allow it!"
He let his mind slip just a little, letting the part of him that was Heart go to the background, while Courage and Wisdom took over, fighting with the skill and training he had spent so much time developing. Emily should be in Pyramidus by now. Can't look just yet...
As it turned out, he didn't have to look. In the course of the battle, he turned in such a manner that he had a clear and unobstructed view of the backyard, Pyramidus and the faintly visible force-shield around it, and the Cogs who were dragging Emily down to the ground. "Emily!" he shouted. "Leave her alone, you monsters!"
Trey started towards them, but barely had he taken a step when another one of those dratted teleportation markers flew down, and when it lifted away again, the yard was empty save for his Zord. A quick glance around showed that the ones he had been fighting had also left. He frowned.
Mondo was not going to get away with this.
"Ay-yi-yi!!" Alpha came surging out of his recharging station. "Alert, alert, distress signal alert!"
Zordon's image appeared in his tube, calm as always. "Calm down, Alpha. This is coming from Pyramidus. The Gold Ranger is trying to contact us."
The two of them looked at the Viewing Globe, and a moment later the familiar form of the gold and black warrior appeared there. "Zordon! Alpha! Please come in, I need your help!"
"Gold Ranger?" Zordon asked quietly. "What is your need?"
"I need the help of the Rangers," the warrior replied just as quietly. "A human woman has been kidnaped by Mondo, and she must be rescued."
Zordon tilted his head. "For what purposes was she taken?"
"I love her." the reply was steel-hard, startling, and firm. "Please let me teleport to your Power Chamber and contact the Rangers. Her life could be at stake here."
The ancient wizard prepared to reply, when the Viewing Globe crackled, and a second communication cut through their strange ally's, one visible to both parties. "Her life most definitely is at stake, Gold Ranger!" Mondo declared as he appeared. "Or should I just call you 'Trey of Triforia'?" He laughed, obviously thrilled at the thought of having the Gold Ranger's secret in the palm of his hand.
Trey flickered momentarily, then appeared demorphed in a split screen view on the Globe. "What is it that you want, Mondo?" he asked flatly.
"To be blunt: you. Obeying my every command. Surrender to my Cogs at dawn in Angel Grove Park, or I will take great pleasure in destroying this human girl and making you watch!"
For a moment Mondo's image flickered away, and in it's place there came a dungeon area. Sitting inside of a cage, guarded by what had to be a dozen or so Cogs, was Emily, her eyes wide as she huddled there, rather plainly scared out of her mind.
"Emily..." Trey whispered softly. "Mondo, if you've hurt her...I'll...."
The Machine King laughed. "You'll do nothing! You will do as you are told, Gold Ranger! Surrender at dawn to my forces in Angel Grove Park, or you will never see her again...alive!"
His image winked out, and Trey alone was visible in the Viewing Globe. Slowly he turned to Zordon. "I need your help." he said quietly. "Will you help me?"
"Summon the Rangers and Billy, Alpha." Zordon said just as quietly. "We will help you, Prince Trey."
Don't do what he wants, Trey, she thought, hoping he could hear her, knowing that he couldn't. You're more important than I am. He was everything she had ever wanted in a man, and in a friend. With him in her heart, she knew that she could face up to the worst of enemies and the most dangerous of situations.
She took several deep breaths, and tightened her grip on herself. She was not going to sleep. She was not going to let herself be unconscious in this palace of evil. She was going to remain awake...she was going to wait for Trey. He would come. She knew he would.
Trey smiled briefly. "I am Trey of Triforia, but you have known me as the Gold Ranger," he introduced himself. "And I have need of your assistance."
The six young people listened as Zordon laid out what was going on. Tommy's eyes widened, then he nodded. "We'll help. We need to be able to get into the Skybase. Any ideas?"
The Triforian prince didn't find himself surprised; he had gotten to know the Rangers fairly well since he had started to help them and Tommy's leadership skills shone through no matter what. "We must be able to do this without being detected or at least interrupted in our rescue mission. I will have no harm come to Emily."
Billy closed his eyes for a moment, in a thinking posture so familiar to them all that they had come to expect it of him. "I might have something. I've been working on it for a while now. Something to shut down the defenses and probably even shut down the Machines, if for a short time only."
Without another word, he darted down one of the corridors, reappearing a few moments later with a small hand held device. "It's not really finished yet, but it should work. I haven't been able to test it really." He smiled briefly at the alien prince. "But according to all my theories it should work."
"And your theories are better than most people's certainties," Tommy told his friend. "I think the best way would be for just one or two of us to go with you, Trey, to distract the Cogs while you get your lady out of there."
Trey nodded. "Who will be going?"
"I am." Kat spoke quietly, stepping forward just a moment before Billy did.
"I have to." the ex-Ranger stated. "The device might need to be fixed or recalibrated, and I'm the only one who can do it."
No one had an argument to counter it; Adam knew machines, but Billy knew things about the machines he built that could baffle even Zordon. "Be ready to teleport if you need to, Billy." Tommy advised. "We don't want any of you getting hurt."
The former Ranger smiled a little, glancing over at Kat and Trey. "I'm going in the best escort I can. We'll all do fine."
Trey nodded. He didn't know who this human was; there hadn't really been time for introductions, but if Zordon trusted him, then he trusted him. "Let's go. The sooner we have her rescued, the better."
"I'll activate it now." Billy touched a button. "That should get us past the defense shield. The secondary function should come in handy if we run into Mondo or any of them."
Kat smiled a little. "Then let's get moving."
A moment later, there rose from the Power Chamber three columns of light: rose-pink, golden-black, and ivory-white, heading not for some destination in Angel Grove, but for somewhere far darker and more dangerous: the very home of their enemy: the Machine Skybase.
"Are we going to kill her, daddy, huh, huh, are we going to kill her?" she heard a childish robotic voice asking, and stiffened. From the shadows surrounding her came the three robots she'd seen briefly when she'd first arrived, and another voice spoke, one that had commanded her to the dungeons.
"Not just yet, Sprocket," King Mondo chuckled. "We need her. But once that human has learned his place beneath me...then you can play with her."
Emily shrank back just the littlest bit, trying to still present a brave front. The last thing she wanted to do was let them know how scared she was. "You'll never get Trey to serve you!" she declared. "No matter what you do to me!"
Mondo laughed loudly. "I think you underestimate just how far your human emotions can ruin you! But once the little prince has learned my mastery of him is complete, then you'll watch as he destroys you at my command...and enjoys it!"
"I don't think so, Mondo." A harsh female voice spoke from the shadows, and two morphed figures emerged, one in pink armor, the other in black and gold. Emily noticed someone sort of skulking in the background, but kept her eyes on Trey.
The Machine King whirled just in time to receive the Golden Power Staff across the chest. "Law one of dealing with the Gold Ranger, Mondo," Trey growled. "You do not interfere with the woman I love! Is that understood??"
Before the king could say yes, no, or otherwise, Trey shouted, "It's time for a Gold Rush!"
The brilliant energies gather, exploding right under the King's metallic chin, and blowing his head clean off his body, leaving just a few waving scraps of wires behind! "Use your device now." Trey snapped to the person Emily couldn't see. "We need to get out of here, and we don't need to waste time."
There was no verbal reply, at least not one she could hear, but the Cogs that were there had a very unusual reaction: they stopped moving! Machina and Sprocket, however, didn't appear to be affected. "They must work on a different circuit." a gruff male voice spoke.
"We don't have time, we can get out of here as it is," the Pink Ranger said. Trey moved away from what was left of Mondo, not even giving it a second thought or look, and kicked the Cogs out of his way to get through to Emily's cage. He knew the Machine King could and would be repaired; he had other things to deal with right now, such as rescuing the fair maiden.
"Are you ready to go?" he asked quietly, looking at her with one hand on the bars.
She smiled, standing up. "I thought you'd never ask."
"Wait, Billy." Zordon spoke suddenly as Emily looked all around in shock. "Emily Gibson, welcome to the Power Chamber. You are a very special person to have captured the heart of the Gold Ranger."
The young woman smiled, blushing a little. She didn't appear to be too startled at the sight of the floating head before her. "Thank you. But it just...kind of happened."
"Trey of Triforia," Zordon looked at their new friend. "What are your intentions now? To return to your homeland?"
The Gold Ranger shook his head. "I can't. My sister is Queen there, and I've been banished...for not letting her have the Golden powers." He sighed a little. "They are mine by birthright, but the throne is hers. I won't contest her with that. I had intended to travel some more...but I don't have any reason to now." He smiled at Emily. "I've got all the reasons I could ever want to stay here, though."
Emily smiled back at him, their hands slowly intertwining about each other. "I love you, Trey."
"I love you, too."
Zordon nodded. "I offer you then membership in the Power Rangers Zeo of Earth, and I also ask that you, Emily Gibson, be permitted to learn the true identities of the Power Rangers, on the condition that you never reveal them to anyone who does not already know them, since you already know Trey's identity."
The young woman's eyes widened; she had never dreamed something like this would happen. "But...you don't even know me!"
"Trey knows you." Tommy spoke as Red Zeo. "And we trust him. He's proven he's a friend since he got here, and if he trusts you, then we know that we can trust you."
With a motion from their leader, all five of them demorphed, and Billy walked around to join them. "Tommy Oliver, Red Zeo." The young man introduced himself, then the others quickly.
"I promise I won't ever tell who you are!" Emily swore, her hand never leaving Trey's. "Ever!"
Trey nodded, knowing her sincerity as he knew his own. Length of the relationship meant nothing; it was the depth of the heart that counted, and they both knew it. The depth of their love was beyond anything any of them had ever considered or encountered before. "And I will join with you. My sister is a good Queen, she will learn restraint in time and accept my choice, I believe. But I will remain here." He gazed at Emily. "With my beloved."
Slowly he pulled her into his arms, barely hearing the Rangers as they discussed places he could stay and shopping for him and repairing Pyramidus and all manner of things that mattered so little as long as she was with him. "I love you, Emily Gibson, with all my soul, now and forever more."
"I love you, Trey of Triforia, with every part of my being, and I would be happy forever as long as you are with me." Emily replied. Slowly, softly, tenderly, with emotions of eons in their hearts, the two of them kissed for the first, but not the last, time.