Rita Repulsa and Lord Zedd, along with their scuzzy servants, appeared back in the Lunar Palace after almost a full year of vacation. They'd left Sophie and Girard to take care of the Rangers, and they certainly hoped their vampiric allies had done well.
"What's going on here?" Zedd looked around at the dusty rooms. "Where are they?"
Rita stamped her wand on the floor, cleaning the place at once. "Much better!" she declared. Another wave of her wand put her RepulsaScope back in place, and she quickly went to check on the Rangers, muttering, "Looks like Sophie and Girard screwed up a lot since we left!"
Zedd nodded sharply. "Good thing they're obviously gone now!"
"Yes!" Rita peered down to Earth. "Now the professional evil villains can get back on the job! I hate amateurs!"
"What are those pesky Rangers doing?" Zedd stared down to Earth. When they'd left, the werewolf girl had just learned of her pregnancy. They'd told Sophie and Girard to have the baby there and evil before they got back, it was plain they had failed miserably.
Rita checked out what was going on and was revolted. "Looks like they just graduated. And now they're having a party!"
"Ugh!" Zedd hated parties, especially if he wasn't invited. "There must be a way to get those blasted Rangers!"
"Zeddy!" Rita laughed suddenly. "Look!"
Down in the party, the Purple Ranger had just uttered a heartfelt wish. Zedd laughed harshly. "So she wants a child? Then we shall give her one!"
"A very special one!" Rita mockingly laughed.
"Goldar!" Zedd roared.
Goldar shuffled up. "Yes, my lord?"
Zedd laughed evilly. "You are going to help us get the Purple Ranger!" he quickly explained what they were going to do, and was somewhat surprised to see Goldar shiver!
"But I hate kids!" the winged ape complained. Zedd laughed.
"That's a shame, cause you're going to be one again!" he waved his staff and transformed his servant into a humanoid baby. Rita chuckled.
"Too bad we can't keep him like this!"
Zedd nodded as the disguised Goldar wailed in protest. "So like him!" he groaned as he put the baby into a basket and zapped it to Evanthe's doorstep. She was going to have a very nasty surprise when she got home!
At the Youth Center, the Rangers were celebrating their graduation at last. In the two months since the destruction of Sophie and Girard, things had never been more peaceful. Zordon had told them that Rita and Zedd were on their way back to the Lunar Palace, though, so they were, as usual, on guard.
But for now, they were just having fun. Evanthe cradled Gwen gently in her arms, her eyes shining with love and suppressed desire. Elissa watched her, smiling.
"She really loves that kid," Adam said softly. Elissa nodded.
"I wish there was some way to make Evanthe's wish come true," she murmured. Adam agreed with her.
"But even for vampires, werewolves, and Power Rangers, some wishes just don't come true," he reminded her. Elissa nodded, squeezing his hand a little. Things had been a trifle strained between them since the incident with her memories, but both knew that would pass in time. At least, they both hoped it would.
Evanthe brought Gwen back over to them, handing her to the parents. "She's a sweet kid, Elissa. You're lucky to have her."
"That I am," Elissa nodded. "And she's lucky to have you as her godmother."
"I'm honored you asked me," Evanthe smiled. Elissa nodded.
"Who better than my best friend?" she smiled, feeding the baby that had become the focus of her entire existence. Evanthe sighed a little, then looked around for Billy.
"I need to get a bite," she told him. "Coming, Billy?"
"Of course," he smiled. Hand in hand they went out for dinner.
In her lifetime, Evanthe Foster had seen many things come and go, and had experienced a thousand sensations the likes of which no one but another vampire could understand. But nothing compared to walking home with the man she loved with all her heart.
"Things have been so peaceful the past two months," she observed. Billy nodded as he subtly reached into his pocket. "I hope they stay like that."
So do I. And for many reasons. "Evanthe," he said softly. "There's something I need to ask you."
He dropped to one knee suddenly in front of her. "Evanthe, will you marry me?"
The paleness of her cheeks flushed to a light rose suddenly as she blushed. Only once before had anyone ever asked her that, and that romance was doomed to failure. She put thoughts of her old beloved out of her mind, and smiled at the vampire she knew in her heart she had quite literally waited six hundred years for. "Yes."
Billy leaped to his feet and slipped the amethyst ring upon her finger. "You just made me the happiest vampire in the world!" he whispered to her. Evanthe smiled as they hugged.
"No, Billy!" she corrected. "I'm the happiest vampire in the world!"
"It's a tie!" he told her as they started back to her house. Evanthe kissed him passionately.
"There's no one in all the world I'd rather marry than you," she told him. There was once. But not anymore. And I really need to tell you about him, too.
Billy laughed and held her tightly around the waist. "There better not be!" he kissed her tenderly on the lips. "What do you say we celebrate?" he murmured.
"What kind of celebration did you have in mind?" she grinned, running a hand up his back under his shirt.
Into her ear he whispered, "The kind that your parents hopefully won't interrupt!"
"Sounds good to me! They're out for tonight anyway!" she told him. Laughing and smiling they made their way back to her house.
But something was waiting for them there. Sitting on the doorstep was a stroller, with small cries coming from within it. "What the heck?" Billy was startled to see that, to say the least.
Evanthe, curiosity overwhelming everything else, went over and peered inside. "Ohhhhh!! Billy, come look!" she cried out.
Billy smiled and looked inside to see a cute little baby boy inside. "Isn't he cute!" he cooed. "There' s a note, too!"
"What does it say?" Evanthe asked as she made silly faces at the baby.
"Dear Miss," Billy read it aloud. "Please take care of my son Alfred. I can't do it, and you seem like a nice person. Signed, a poor mother."
Evanthe looked back at the little baby, and sighed. "You poor thing!"
Billy nodded briefly. "I'll be right back," he headed over to Lieutenant Stone's house. Evanthe took Alfred inside and played with the adorable baby until her fianc‚ returned, some thirty minutes later, with Stone in tow.
"Evanthe?" he asked softly to get her attention. She looked up at him, and both men were startled to see the look of love and peace in her eyes. "I called Child Services, they're going to be stopping by tomorrow. I fortunately was able to talk them into letting you watch the little tyke until they find his parents."
"Thanks," Evanthe smiled softly. "Whoever left this did me a big favor. I just wish I could keep him. I've wanted a child of my own for so long."
"I know," Jerome nodded. He wished he could arrange things so she could keep him, but the laws were the laws.
"But at least I have Alfred for a little while," Evanthe smiled as she began to cuddle the infant. Billy could see the joy, and the pain, in her eyes still. At least her wish is coming true for a little while.
Jerome nodded. "If Billy hadn't asked me to let you keep the child, I would have asked to watch it. But if you ever need a baby-sitter, let me know."
Evanthe glanced briefly at Billy. "Billy and I generally go out for about an hour or two every night, I'll need someone to watch him then."
"You got it!" Jerome smiled at them. "He is adorable, but I think he needs a diaper change!"
Evanthe sniffed a little. "I think you're right!" she smiled a little. "He's so cute!" she glanced briefly to Stone again. "Oh, did Billy tell you the other good news?"
Evanthe grinned as she held up her left hand. "We're engaged!"
The officer smiled warmly at them both. "Congratulations!"
Evanthe had never looked happier. "I get engaged and get a temporary son all on the same night!"
Billy smiled a little. "I have to go to the store really quick! The parents obviously didn't think of leaving supplies."
Evanthe nodded. "You're right! You'd better hurry, too!"
Jerome grinned a little. "I'll come along, since this is your first time taking care of a kid!"
In the Park household, Elissa reached over as the telephone rang incessantly. "What?" she grumbled into the receiver. She giggled a second later.
"What is it, Elissa?" Adam wondered as he tickled her. "Who's calling?"
"Who is this?" Elissa asked into the phone.
Evanthe's voice responded. "It's me, Elissa, and I've got two pieces of good news!"
Evanthe had never sounded so happy in the past century. "First, Billy asked me to marry him tonight!"
"Congratulations!" Elissa squealed in joy for her friend.
"Yeah, and the second piece of good news," Evanthe continued. "Someone left a baby on my doorstep, and I get to keep it!"
Elissa sat up straight in bed. "You're a mother?" she asked, flabbergasted.
"Well, sort of," Evanthe said. "Until someone finds his real parents anyway."
"I'm so happy for you!" Elissa smiled, as she mouthed to Adam who was on the phone, answering his insistent questioning.
Evanthe laughed a little. "Not as happy as I am! I just wish I could keep him forever!"
Elissa smiled. "I guess your wish came true tonight, didn't it? No matter for how little of a time!"
"Yeah," Evanthe smiled. "And I was thinking, I'm going to suggest this to Billy when he gets back, he and Jerome Stone went to get some baby supplies, I think I might want to adopt a kid."
"I think you'll make a great mother!"
Evanthe was still making funny faces to the baby. "At least taking care of this little guy gives me some practice!"
"That it does," Elissa giggled a little as Adam kept up his tickling. "I'll come by and see little Alfred tomorrow morning, okay?"
"Sure," Evanthe grinned as Alfred tugged on her long hair. "Bring Gwen, maybe they'll be friends!"
Elissa nodded, giggling. "Sure! Stop that!"
"Do I even want to know what you and Adam are doing?"
Elissa sighed. "He found out that I am ticklish, and is taking advantage of it!" she glanced over at him a trifle annoyed. "I wish he wouldn't!"
Evanthe laughed as Elissa shoved Adam out of the bed onto the floor. "Evanthe, I'm so happy for you, but tell me, did Billy get down on one knee to ask you?"
"Oh, yes, he did!" Evanthe sighed in joy at the memories.
"That was so sweet," Elissa glanced over at Adam as he tried to get untangled from the blankets he took with him when he fell. "I wish mine had been!" he looked shocked at that.
Evanthe smiled. "Billy is so romantic at times!"
"I know," Elissa grinned as she stuck her tongue out at Adam. "You are so lucky!"
"Maybe I should get him to give Adam lessons in romance?" Evanthe laughed. Elissa chuckled, her friend's humor was contagious.
Evanthe leaned happily against her chair and smiled at the baby gurgling just a few feet away. "Oh, Elissa, today has been the happiest day of my life!
"You won't be saying that in a couple of hours when Alfred wakes you up when he gets hungry!" Elissa warned her.
Elissa's laughter sounded. "I'll let you get back to Alfred. I need sleep!"
"See you tomorrow, Elissa. You and Adam have fun!"
"He can," Elissa said dryly. "I'm going to sleep. Bye."
"Bye!" the sound of Evanthe's phone hanging up was echoed a second later by Elissa's, who snuggled under the comforter as Adam managed to drag himself back onto the bed.
"What are you smiling about?" Adam asked, noticing the expression on her face.
"Billy and Evanthe," she told him. "He proposed."
"Awwww," Adam smiled. "I knew he would!" of course I knew, he told me about it yesterday!
Elissa turned a little away from him. "From what she said, it was so romantic. . ."
Adam sighed. "And you think I'm not romantic?"
"I didn't say that."
"But do you think it?"
She still wasn't looking at him. "Sometimes."
"Elissa, please, look at me!" he asked quietly. Elissa didn't.
"I'm tired, Adam," she said softly. It was true, as well.
Adam sighed. "All right. We'll talk tomorrow?"
Elissa nodded. "When I get back."
"Evanthe's. She found a baby on her front step and asked if I'd bring Gwen over," her voice was growing distant and distracted as she spoke.
"All right," he laid down quietly. "Good night, Elissa."
"Good night," she waited quietly for him to fall asleep, and as he did so, went to the living room. There was some nights she just didn't want to be near him. This was one of them.
The next morning, Elissa pushed Gwen's stroller into Evanthe's yard. She glanced up to see Evanthe playing on the front step with Alfred. "He is adorable!"
Evanthe looked up, Elissa sounded tired, no, exhausted! "Elissa, what's wrong? Didn't you sleep last night?"
"Not a wink."
The vampire frowned. "Why not?"
Her friend chuckled a little. "Tickling you all night?"
She shook her head. "No, he slept."
Evanthe frowned, something was definitely up here. "What's wrong?"
Elissa sighed. "Nothing. Things have just been a little strained since Jareth and Marcus paid me that little visit."
"Oh," Evanthe's frown deepened. "Come on, get your mind off it! Let's put Gwen and Alfred down together and see if they like each other!"
Elissa quietly put her daughter in the playpen Billy had brought home, and watched as the two babies communicated in that weird and wordless way that infants did.
"Looks like they do like each other!" Elissa smiled, then turned to her friend. "Can we talk?"
"We can always talk," Evanthe said firmly. Elissa nodded as she sat back down.
It took her a few moments to speak as she sorted her thoughts out. Finally, she said, "Adam is being so. . .so. . .I don't know. ."
"What's he doing, precisely?"
"Distancing himself from me," Elissa told her. "Getting upset if I even think of Jareth, in any way."
Evanthe thought for a few moments. "Sounds to me like he's jealous."
"But why?" Elissa wondered. "Jareth is dead, he's been dead for over a hundred years!"
Evanthe sighed. "But Adam saw your memories of him, and how you felt about him then. I think he might think you love Jareth more than you love him."
"Then why hasn't he asked me?" Elissa wondered. Whatever Evanthe might have said in answer didn't happen as a sudden mocking laugh came from the playpen. Both of them looked over to see Goldar was standing there, with a crying Gwen in his grip. "Put my child down!"
Evanthe ran towards him, eyes blazing. He was Alfred, it was all a Rita and Zedd trick!!! "Drop my godchild!"
"Surrender, Purple Ranger!" Goldar challenged her. "And I might!"
"What?" Evanthe didn't believe her ears, her eyes darted to one side to see Elissa frozen in place, obviously terrified for Gwen's life.
"Surrender!" he repeated. He would not fail in his mission this time!
Evanthe took a deep breath. "Put Gwen down, and I will," she told him. Never had she let a child come to harm if she could prevent it, and she wasn't going to stop now.
"Come to me first," Goldar told her. "Otherwise, no deal!"
The Purple Ranger took a deep breath, and walked over to him. "Now, put the child down!" so I can tear you into shreds!
Goldar's harsh hand came down on her shoulder, and she had time only to hear his mocking, "You fool!" before they all three vanished. Elissa stared at where they had been, furious beyond belief.
"Elissa?" she looked to see Billy coming towards her. "Elissa, what is it?"
"Goldar has Gwen and Evanthe!"
The Blue Ranger's eyes narrowed. "What? How?"
"He was Alfred!" she almost wailed the words out.
Billy nodded briefly. "Let's call the others. We need to get them back." Rita and Zedd are going to pay for this! He called the others through his communicator, then turned to her. "Come on, let's go."
As the three of them appeared in the throne room, Goldar laughed hideously. "Master, I have gotten not only the vampire, but the wolven child as well!"
"Let her go!" Evanthe grabbed for Gwen, as Goldar released the baby. Evanthe growled as she caught her and held her against her tenderly.
"Excellent work, Goldar!" Rita congratulated him. Evanthe backed away from them, eyes glowing a furious red and her fangs gleaming in the subdued light. She was a perfect picture of an annoyed vampire!
Zedd nodded. "For once you haven't disappointed us!" he looked to Evanthe. "I suggest you calm down!"
"Send Gwen back to her mother, now!" Evanthe demanded. "I might not be able to feed off you, but I can certainly kill you!"
Zedd shook his head. "She is not going anywhere, yet!"
"Send her back now," Evanthe's voice lowered almost to a growl. "Or I find out just what you taste like!"
"Try!" Zedd taunted. "I assure you, you will find a forcefield preventing you from going anywhere!"
Evanthe growled even deeper, and launched herself at Zedd, fangs flashing. Zedd laughed as she bounced off the forcefield Rita had erected about her as she demanded Gwen's release. "You can't get to me!" he teased her. Evanthe stopped and glared at him harshly.
"What do you want, Zedd?" she asked. "Why couldn't you just leave us alone?"
"I want you," Zedd told her, "but most of all, I want that child!"
Evanthe held Gwen closer to her, hissing, "You will leave this child alone!"
"Never!" Zedd declared. "Not with what she holds inside of her!"
"And why do you keep wanting me?" she asked. "There's hundreds of other vampires in the world, and most of them are much more your type!" the good ones are very few and far between, most of my kind are evil!
Zedd laughed softly. "Cause you're a Ranger!"
Oh, great! "You're never going to win, Zedd!" she declared, holding onto Gwen. She would keep this child as safe as if she were her own.
The Rangers paced back and forth in the Command Center as Billy worked. Adam looked at his worried wife. " Elissa, we'll find them, you know Evanthe won't let anyone hurt Gwen!"
I just want my child back, now!
We'll get her back!
"Any luck yet, Billy?" Tommy asked. Billy nodded briefly and gratefully.
"I think I've got a fix on them, but I can't teleport them out!"
"Can we teleport in and get them?" was the White Ranger's next question. Billy shook his head.
"I'm bringing it up on the Viewing Globe now," he said. The team turned to stare at the Globe with baited breath. Elissa growled softly as she saw Gwen and Evanthe within the forcefield.
Guinevere. she thought to herself.
I told you she'd take care of her! Evanthe's arms were wrapped around Gwen, and every now and then she threw furious glances at Rita and Zedd. Elissa took a deep breath
Momma's coming, angel! Momma's coming! Be a good girl for Aunt Evanthe! Elissa whispered softly to her daughter from her trance. Gwen gurgled happily as Elissa emerged, and promptly collapsed into his arms. "Thanks," she muttered as she stood up.
"No problem," Adam shook his head. "We need to get them out of there somehow."
Billy nodded briefly. "I'm trying!"
There's something not right, Elissa whispered.
What do you mean?
I felt something when I talked to Gwen. Something that wasn't there from before, like something was. . I don't know. .
Maybe when we get her back, we should ask Zordon and Alpha to run some tests?
Billy interrupted their mental conversation suddenly. "I think I know how to break through!"
"All right!" Adam cheered. "How long will it take you?"
The news wasn't very good. "A couple of hours."
Aisha sighed. "Let's hope Zedd doesn't try anything in those hours."
Elissa turned to them, eyes practically orange with rage. "He will pay if he does!"
All the Rangers knew she meant it.
Zedd pinned Evanthe with a glance. "Now, to get down to business!" he hissed. "You shall serve me, Purple Ranger!"
"You're like a broken record, you know that, don't you?" Evanthe growled. "I'm not going to serve you, get used to it!"
"Fine!" Zedd laughed. "Then your godchild dies!"
Zedd did what might have been a smile, if he'd had lips. "Then you shall serve me!"
"Leave Gwen alone," she whispered softly. "And. . .and. . ."
"And what?" Zedd's voice was soft and possessive.
Evanthe took a deep breath. She couldn't let Gwen be hurt, no matter the cost. "Leave Gwen alone. . .and I'll serve you. Just don't hurt her." Of course, if I can get her out of here, the deal's off!
"That's more like it!" Zedd nodded approvingly. Evanthe held the baby close to her and whispered softly to her, "I can't let anyone hurt you, Gwen. You're the closest thing to a daughter I'll ever have," she chuckled a little as Gwen grabbed her hair. "Come on, leggo of my hair!" when Gwen didn't, Evanthe carefully pried the small hand off. "I've got to get you home, kiddo! Your mom's gonna be worried!"
Rita started over to Zedd, "Hey, Ed, look at this cool. . . ." as he walked, he tripped and knocked his sword into a small device on the edge of the throne, destroying it. The Purple Ranger smiled.
"Lunch time," she whispered as she launched herself through where the forcefield had been, now gone due to Rito's ineptitude. A second later, just as her fangs sank into Zedd's neck, Tommy, Adam, and Elissa arrived in the throne room. Evanthe staggered back, pale and ill-looking. "Ohh. ..I. .I think I'm going to be sick," she stammered, her stomach revolting at what she'd drunk. "Zedd. ..what have you been eating. ..you taste like poison. .." I've never drank ANYTHING like this! It's HORRIBLE!
Zedd laughed, he'd known this would happen, which was why he hadn't put up a fight. "My blood is poison!" he told her. "You just signed your own death certificate!"
Elissa growled and hit Zedd upside the head with her booted heel. "That's for touching my daughter!" she slammed a foot between his legs. " And that's for touching my best friend!"
Evanthe staggered to them, as Rita laughed. "If we can't control you, then you'll just die!" she mocked the pain of the vampire. Tommy grabbed Evanthe as she almost fainted.
"Elissa!" he said. "Hate to interrupt your fun, but we really need to go!"
The Rose Ranger nodded as she threw Zedd into a wall, then joined the others. As Tengas surged towards them, they teleported out just in time. Rita groaned in rage. "Great! We lost them all!" she marched over to Zedd and dragged him to his feet. "Get up you faceless idiot!"
"They will pay!" the lord of evil screamed out. "They will pay a dear price!"
Evanthe was doubled over in the Command Center, trying to spit out what was left of Zedd's blood in her mouth. Her mother examined her quickly. "This isn't good. She needs pure human blood."
Evanthe sat down as much as she could, feeling the strength leave her body. "He said his blood was poison. I do not feel good!"
"I guess it'll have to be one of us," Tommy said.
"Which of you is willing?" Diana wanted to know. Kim stepped up at once.
Diana nodded briefly. "I'm going to test your blood first, I'm not taking any chances," Kim nodded, though she did look a little nervous. "Relax. This won't hurt, will it?" she glanced to Billy.
He shook his head. "It's just a little sting. Evanthe drank from me before and was okay."
Diana sipped gently from the Pink Ranger, then shook her head. "What is it?" Kim wondered.
"I'm not sure. May I test another of you Rangers?"
"Sure," Tommy stepped up, and Diana repeated the procedure. She frowned almost at once.
"Your Ranger powers have tainted your blood," she reported sadly.
Adam. Remember who offered to donate, in case of emergency?
Ian! We'll have to get him!
"They're doing it again!" Rocky complained. Adam almost glared at his friend.
"It's a habit, deal with it! Alpha, teleport Ian here now!" the Black Ranger snapped out the words. Alpha nodded, and a moment later his brother stood before them.
"What's up?" Ian wondered.
Evanthe didn't look any better as Adam explained what was going on. "What do I do?" Ian asked quietly.
"Just stand there," Evanthe said as she staggered over to him, on her last legs. She wrinkled her lips back from her fangs and sank them into Ian's neck. A tense few minutes passed, as she drank from him. As she finished, he almost fell to the Command Center floor.
"Thanks," he whispered to Tommy as the White Ranger caught him. Evanthe shook her head.
"Thank you, Ian. You saved my life," she sighed a little. "At least I know now not to try and drink from Zedd, he tastes hideous!"
Elissa told her softly, "Thanks for protecting Gwen," as she spoke, she almost collapsed herself. Adam, I feel it again!
Gwen. We'd better get Zordon and Alpha to run some tests on her! He flinched a little, and jumped forward to catch Elissa as she passed out almost into his arms. "Are you okay?" he asked a moment later when she opened her eyes. As she nodded, he turned to the others. "We'd better find out what we can about why you're feeling this."
"You want to explain it to him, Elissa?" Adam asked. She nodded.
"When Gwen was on the moon, I tried to contact her, to reassure her that I was on my way," she told them. "I felt something, I felt it again just a minute ago, but it grew. It was too much for me, and I passed out."
IF WE MAY, ELISSA, MIGHT WE RUN SOME SCANS ON GWEN TO DETERMINE IF WE CAN WHAT THIS IS?
"Go ahead," Elissa nodded her agreement to Zordon. Alpha quickly ran the tests, and fed the information into the computer. As the results came in, Alpha told them, "She does have some sort of power, and it is strong, but we can't determine just what it is at the moment."
I hope I don't keep passing out when it surfaces! Elissa told Adam, who nodded briefly. "I hope we can identify it!" You can let me go, you know. I'd like to stand up! she took Gwen from Tommy and looked to Adam. "I think I need to go lay down for a while."
"Let's go home," Adam said, an edge to his voice. Elissa almost glared at him, then teleported out. Adam sighed deeply, then followed her.
Evanthe glanced to Ian. "Thanks again, Ian. You taste a lot better than Zedd!"
"Hey, the least I can do for you!"
Evanthe sighed as she looked to Billy. "Come on. Let's go home," he saw the sadness in her eyes, and leaned over to her.
"There's always adoption," he whispered. Evanthe nodded briefly.
Billy smiled and kissed her deeply. "I'll meet you at your house. I have to go eat first."
Evanthe smiled. "I'll see you there," the light kiss he'd given transformed into a deep and passionate kiss that had everyone in there coughing a little at the end. Those two would be together forever, they knew. It was a wonderful sight to see.