But Elissa was all alone one morning as she stared at the poster, wondering just what it was she could do to deal with the horrors that had happened to her so recently. She felt worse than violated, she felt used and thrown away. Nothing could help her. . .or so she thought.
She didn't notice the three figures in the doorway. "She hasn't moved once?" Aisha asked softly. Adam shook his head.
"Except to eat..a very little."
The Yellow Ranger's pretty face hardened briefly. "Maybe we can try and help her."
Adam's eyes widened. "Please. I'm so worried about her." He wanted her to feel better, to be better, to be the strong, powerful, enchanting beauty she had been when they first met. He missed that woman, he missed her terribly. This cowering shell was nothing like the true Elissa.
Aisha nodded quietly. "We'll try." She glanced over at Kim, who nodded.
"We'll do everything we can." Neither of them expected her to react as they came over, but Elissa's eyes flicked to the Pink Ranger as she spoke her name. "Elissa, want to talk?"
The Rose Ranger moved back a little, her fingers gripping onto the covers and her eyes wide and wild. "Please, talk to us, Elissa." Aisha urged. If she could just talk about what had happened, she might feel better.
Kim sighed. "Elissa, we just want to help you!"
"Is this a private comforting session or can anyone join in?" a vaguely familiar voice came from the door. All of them looked over to see two figures they'd never thought to see again in there. Aisha's smiled with joy. Certainly these two could help!
Aura, Amber Ranger from an alternate dimension, smiled. "We came for a visit. And Azure wanted to talk with Elissa."
"Maybe she'll have better luck pulling Elissa back to the real world." Aisha sighed, as Azure came over to them. Adam had already filled the dimensional sisters in on what had happened when they arrived.
"Elissa?" Azure spoke very softly, remembering how she'd been during her own agonies. Elissa glanced up at her, her eyes widening slightly at the sight. The two of them hadn't formed quite the friendship that Aura and Evanthe had, but they did share a bond of sorts. "Want to talk? To me?"
Elissa considered for a moment, then remembered Azure telling her of times when she'd been in a similar position. She quietly nodded, and Azure glanced at the others, then back to the Rose Ranger. "Want them to leave for now?"
Aura herded the others out as Elissa nodded, then glanced to her sister. "Take as long as you need. I'm going to go see Evanthe." She had heard of the horror that the Purple Ranger was going through herself, and wanted to fix that up as much as it was capable of being fixed. If there was one thing she knew, it was how it felt to have something from your past come back to her.
Azure nodded. "It might take a while." As the others left, the door shutting behind them, Elissa suddenly broke down into tears, and Azure wrapped her arms around her friend, doing all she could to comfort her.
"Why did they do it to me again?" she practically howled. Elissa wondered if she would ever truly be in peace; she had lived most of her life in utter fear of Micheal, then when that was gone, other fears had taken it's place.
Azure looked calmly at her. "I heard what they did."
"That's not the worst of it." Elissa murmured and Azure raised one eyebrow. "They made me want to kill myself."
"Obviously you didn't." Azure knew quite well what it was to have that desire in you, and to not want it because of a spell. She knew the
Elissa nodded quietly, her tears falling a little more. "Evanthe's mom stopped me. I bit her!" Azure held her during the torrent of grief. "For a little less than two days, I was a vampire."
"That must have been horrible for you."
Elissa nodded quietly, leaning against the strength of the other woman. Something else occurred to her. "Azure, Zedd wanted to know if I could bear another child, like Gwen. They made Adam and Evanthe watch." The werewolf almost flinched back when Azure let loose with a stream of profanity that dwarfed anything Evanthe had ever tried. Slowly, she continued. "I don't remember what happened after that. Diana told me that I tried to kill myself."
"I know how that feels. To want to die more than anything."
The Rose Ranger glanced curiously at her. "You've tried?"
"A couple of times." Elissa wanted more information, and Azure told her. "The first time, because I thought I couldn't go on as long as someone was tormenting me." Slowly, she told Elissa about Eric and all that he'd done to her. Elissa shuddered.
"Sounds like Michael."
Azure took a deep breath. "The second time, well that wasn't quite me doing it." She related this time about how Galan had hypnotized her into trying to kill herself.
"I wish I knew why I did it. Tried to at least. And why I can't remember anything."
Azure thought. "Probably because of what they were doing to you. Both why you tried, and why you can't remember."
"I want to remember." ELissa sighed. "I want to know what they did to Adam."
"What's the next thing you remember, after what Finster did?"
"Telling Diana that I felt strange, here in my bedroom." Elissa remembered. Azure asked something else.
"Have you asked Evanthe what happened?"
Elissa shook her head. "I can't talk to them about what happened. They wouldn't understand."
"How do you know?" the Gold Ranger asked curiously. She had learned that people just might understand things you didn't expect them to, when you least expected them to do it.
The other woman sighed. "I know. But they barely understand it happening to Adam."
"You can try."
Elissa shook her head. "I'm too ashamed."
"That's how I felt when what happened to me happened." Azure told her. Elissa sighed and curled up, feeling just a little better inside from talking. Something else occurred to her, though.
"There are times when I want to stop being a Ranger, to leave Angel Grove forever."
Azure nodded. "I know. I've felt the same way before, many times." Of course, she had wound up leaving Angel Grove. ..and finding a much greater destiny than she'd ever had a right to dream of in her youth.
Elissa whined just a little. "Why me? Why can't they just leave me and my family alone!?"
"You know, you sound a lot like I did, less than a year ago." Azure's voice was very gentle. "And I still wonder that. But it's what we do. Someone has to defend this planet, and we got the job."
Her friend's voice was calm when Elissa spoke again. "I've decided."
"To do what?"
"I'm leaving the team."
Azure shook her head lightly. "That's not going to stop them from coming after you."
"I know." Elissa smiled. "But it'll help me while I'm trying to heal. I'm not doing it permanently, just until I don't jump at shadows anymore."
The Gold Ranger of New Kalakan nodded. "I think I know a place where you can go that no one will bother you. A perfect place to heal." Elissa raised an eyebrow at her, and Azure smiled. "Mind making a trip to another universe?"
"No, I don't."
Azure continued, "Then, if you want to, you can come back with Aura and me to our universe, and to a planet called New Kalakan."
"I'd like that." Elissa actually smiled a little, and Azure returned it.
"We can leave whenever you're ready."
Elissa nodded. "I want to talk to Adam, and the rest of the Rangers first." Azure nodded, and Elissa smiled. "Thank you."
"Glad I could help."
Elissa slowly started to get out of bed. "More than you realize. I guess I should see if I still know how to walk."
"I'm certain you do!" Azure grinned as Elissa stood up and started towards the door. Azure went with her, ready to catch her if she had to, but glad to see that she didn't.
Elissa went to the living room, and saw Adam sitting there with the other Rangers. Out the window, she could see Evanthe and Aura quietly talking. "Adam?"
"Elissa?" he watched as she made her way over to him and sat down nearby. "How are you feeling?"
She sighed. "A little better." She reached into a nearby drawer where she'd hidden her morpher the day before. She pulled it out and stared at it for a moment.
"Elissa?" Adam reached out to her, stopping when she didn't even look at him.
"I'm going away."
Adam's eyes went very wide. "Where to? And for how long?"
"I'm going with Azure to New Kalakan."
Her husband's jaw dropped to the ground. "Another universe? For..how long?"
"I don't know."
Something about the way she said that brought fear to Adam's heart. "A..are you going to be coming back. .at all?"
"Yes." She smiled very briefly at him. "I just don't know when."
Adam sighed, cursing Finster and all his ancestors all the way back to the dawn of his species. "I'll miss you." He sighed when she backed away from the hug he tried to give her. "I'm sorry."
"No, I am."
He shook his head. "You have nothing to be sorry about."
"When this happened to you, you bounced back so quickly. Me..I back away from you and all the other Rangers." Elissa murmured, wishing she had Adam's strength.
Adam shrugged. "Everyone heals differently, Elissa." He wouldn't tell her of the horrors that filled his dreams. He glanced down as she handed him her morpher. "Is it safe for you to be there without this?"
"It is." Azure reassured him. "No evil can get onto New Kalakan, and if it does, the Chosen Ranger of that world will take care of it."
"Who's that?" this was something he hadn't heard of! He knew Aura was the chosen one of the Earth in their dimension, but what was New Kalakan and why did it have one. .and who was it?
Azure smiled briefly. "Me."
"Whoa!" Adam's eyes widened in shock. He'd never really thought of Azure as a Ranger, but it seemed to be so. From the doorway, Aura grinned.
"I do believe that's what our Adam said when you were chosen, or so you told me."
Azure smiled. "Actually, my Adam passed out after he said that."
The werewolf Adam stuttered a little, "I. ..I won't do that."
"That's a nice change." Aura said deadpan. She'd had enough of people passing out at unusual news.
Elissa sighed thoughtfully. "I need to talk to Evanthe before I go. I need to find out what happened after Finster raped me."
"Evanthe's outside. She's still kind of shaken up over those two vampires coming back." Aura shivered. "I know how she feels, a little, anyway. At least when Zedd came back last time, he didn't stay that way."
Elissa nodded and headed outside, seeing Evanthe sitting under a tree staring up at the sky. Slowly she walked outside, a little nervously. "Evanthe?"
"Hey, Elissa." Evanthe's eyes were somewhat distant. She'd been thinking about the last few centuries, but she still had a smile for Elissa. "Feeling better?" She smiled a little more when Elissa nodded. "Good."
Elissa quietly sat down near her. "I know you probably aren't up to talk about this, but I need to know. What happened to me on the moon..after Finster raped me?"
Evanthe closed her eyes for a moment, remembering. Her voice was flat and completely unemotional as she spoke. "They left us alone in there. You cried, then started talking about killing yourself. I couldn't make you stop, you wouldn't pay any attention to me. I broke the cuffs they had on me, and managed to stop you. We were about to leave when Zedd came in, and tried warding me off with garlic. He wanted you to kill yourself. I don't know what happened to them seeing if you could have another child. Maybe they were just saying that to scare you. But you grabbed the chain and manacle and tried to do it again. I got it from you and used it to strangle Zedd. We went to Rita's room, then. She was trying to rape Adam, and you tore her throat out."
Elissa paled, then something else occurred to her. "Evanthe, is it true? Did they bring Sophie and Girard back?"
"And they're here to stay, again." Elissa glanced down at the bracelet on Evanthe's wrist, and the vampire nodded. "I talked over what they did with Vincent. They would have faded away in eight hours if Sophie hadn't drunk my blood, then Girard drank hers. It also re-established their control over me. hat's why Alpha made another one of these. Only he or Zordon can take it off."
Her friend touched her hand very briefly. "Evanthe, thank you for making certain I ate while I was temporarily a vampire."
"What else are friends for?"
Elissa was curious about something though. "Why didn't I stay a vampire?"
"Because Mother didn't drink any of your blood. It has to be an exchange." Sophie forced the blood down Evanthe's throat. .her own neck pulsated with pain from the draining...her heart slowly ceased to beat...Evanthe shrugged off the memory, and looked back at her friend. She knew there was something else that Elissa hand't said yet.
Elissa looked down. "I'm leaving Angel Grove."
"I heard." Evanthe touched one ear. "You keep forgetting how good my hearing is. It comes from being what I am."
"I'll miss you." Elissa stood up, leaning on the tree for support. "I guess I should get ready."
"I'll miss you."
Elissa slowly wiped away a tear. "I'll miss you too."
"I love you, my sister," Evanthe uttered something she'd always wanted to call Elissa, but for some reason, only now really felt right to say it. The two of them hugged for a moment, Elissa knowing that Evanthe would never willingly hurt her, so she was safe with her.
She sighed for a moment. "I should get ready to leave."
"I'll help yo pack, Evanthe offered, and Elissa smiled. "What's family for?"
"I'll miss you too."
Adam looked at her. "But you need to get away for a while."
"I think I'm going to go spend some time at the cabin, if you and Evanthe don't mind. I need to get my own head together." Elissa was quick to tell him that she didn't mind. "Thanks. It's going to seem like forever until we're together again."
"At least they can't touch me where I'm going."
Adam nodded. "You'll be safe there."
Elissa glanced over at him quietly. "Did I really kill her?" He nodded and she glanced back down, not certain just what had happened. She had never killed anyone willingly while she was out of wolf form, unless her life had depended on it.
"This is going to sound kind of strange, but.. .thanks. I don't think I could have handled what she was going to do."
Elissa stared at the bags for a moment, then stood up. "I think I should leave."
"I'll help you with your stuff. Come home soon, Elissa. I love you."
Elissa quietly picked up her duffle, watching as Adam picked up her backpack. "Bye." Together they took the bags into the living room. Everyone else was gathered there to say farewell.
"We're going to miss you." Aisha said softly. Elissa only nodded; glad that they weren't going to be pestering her to talk.
Aura glanced to her sister. "Ready to go?"
"Elissa, it's time we went." Azure agreed, holding her hand out to Elissa and smiling warmly. Aura glanced around.
"Good luck with everything, everyone. We'll send her back once she's all patched up." Elissa took Azure's hand, and once someone had all the bags, Aura smiled. "Time to go."
"The sooner we get to New Kalakan, the sooner you can start to heal," Azure told her friend. There was a flicker of light, and then the three of them were gone.
As the light faded away, Adam dropped into a chair and broke down into tears, his shoulders shaking like aspen leaves in strong winds. Evanthe put a hand on his shoulder. "She'll be home soon. And you need to get away for a while yourself."
"I already packed." Adam nodded quietly. "I'm going up to the cabin if that's okay."
Evanthe smiled. "Watch out for avalanches."
"I will." he smiled back at her. "Call me if there are any attack on Angel Grove." With Evanthe's reassurance that they would, he went over to pick Gwen up from her playpen. "I pray she returns soon."
His wife's best friend agreed. "She will. And you and she will both be healed from what's happened."
Adam smiled vaguely. "I never knew that Zedd and Rita could be that cruel."
"It's over with now."
"For me." Adam sighed. "But somehow, I don't think that she'll feel totally safe with Finster out there."
Evanthe agreed; she didn't feel comfortable at all with Girard and Sophie wandering around loose. "I don't think he'll bother her. If he does, he'll have me to deal with."
"And me." Adam glanced at her. "I'm leaving first thing in the morning. I should get some sleep before I go."
"You do that." Evanthe tossed him the cabin keys. "You'll probably need these."
"Thanks." Adam caught them. "But I have Elissa's set."
"Just in case." She smile briefly at him. "I'm going out hunting. I need to feed."
"I'll come with you," Billy said. "Adam, you get some rest. We'll see you when you get back!"
"What do you want to talk about?" her voice was just somewhat distanced, as she had been since they had returned to Earth.
"How you're feeling."
She shrugged. "I'm feeling fine." Billy stopped, holding her hand and looking at her. "What is it?" she didn't like the way he was staring at her.
"I don't believe you." he said quietly. "What you went through on the moon, and now Elissa leaving, and you're just fine?"
She sighed. "I miss Elissa, and as for what happened up there, I'm not going to let it bother me."
"But like Adam and Elissa, you should deal with it or it will bother you."
Evanthe shook her head. "What am I supposed to say, Billy? That now I've got to live with the two people I hate and fear the most in creation again? After I thought I was finally rid of them forever."
He nodded calmly. "It's a start."
She wasn't done yet. "That after we got rid of Rita and Zedd, Sophie and Girard re back? that you, that our son, our friends, are in even more danger than ever, because you know as well as I do that those two will do anything they can to get to me, and if they touch William. .." her voice trailed off as she shook in fear.
"I'd do some major killing." Billy said quietly. "Look, I talked to Vincent and he's going to figure out a way to get their control off you. You know if he says he'll look into something, it's as good as done."
She sighed. "If it can be done."
"If they found a way to reestablish control, there has got to be a way to destroy it."
Evanthe sighed. "They did it by drinking my blood. That's how they were able to stay alive, too."
"Maybe I should drink yours!" he offered. Evanthe sighed.
"I don't know if that would work." the only time she tended to pessimism was when they were involved.
Billy squeezed her hand. "And if that is what Vincent comes up with, I'll do it in a heartbeat."
"You're the only person I'd ever want to drink from me." Evanthe smiled just a little.
Billy remembered something. "I don't think we have to worry about William too much. We know he's alive and a ranger in twenty years. And is still friends with Gwen."
"But who knows what could happen in between now and then?" Evanthe asked, her mind easily producing all matter of things that could be in their future, all manner of horrible things.
"True, but Zordon has a permanent lock on him and Gwen, remember?" Billy had arranged for that early in their offspring's lives; they had no intentions of letting the evil forces ruin their children's days.
Evanthe nodded, as Billy grabbed her into a hug and sighed. Something about that broke down the final barrier in her heart, and she leaned against him, crying with all her soul. Billy did what he could to soothe her. "You're going to be just fine. We'll get rid of those bozos!"
"I hope so." Evanthe breathed. "Oh, I hope so!"
"I'm certain of it." Billy reassured her. Evanthe gazed into his eyes.
"We have to, Billy. I can't exist knowing that they're threatening everything I care about!"
Billy stroked her hair. "We'll find a way. Who knows, maybe Vincent knows something!" the two of them gazed at each other for a few moments, then kissed. They knew that whatever the future held, they would be there together.