The girl sat in front of her computer, staring at the screen.
She looked to be an ordinary teenager, but looks aren't everything.
Perched on her shoulder and fast asleep was a baby iguana. Her small, plump fingers tapped out a mosaic of words on the keyboard before her.
She smiled. Leaning back, she reviewed her work. "This ought to be interesting..."
And then she hit ENTER.
Two things caught her eye. The first was a black asphalt road, gray with age and completely pothole-free. The second thing was a palm tree. Neither items belonged in southeastern Michigan.
The air felt strange, too, she realized. Warm and dry. It smelled faintly of seaweed, something she had only smelt on a rocky beach in Connecticut.
All the signs pointed toward the fact that she was not in Michigan. A sports car with a California license plate only confirmed it.
Her vision blurred, and she put her hand to her forehead to ward off a headache. The motion didn't help any, and only called her attention to her hands. They were creamy, almost hairless. Her long, narrow fingers ended with beautiful, uniform nails. Frightened, she looked for the familiar spots and scars, the burn mark from where she spilled boiling soup on herself, the strange notch in her right middle finger where she always held her pencil.
They were missing. Her hands were as alien as her surroundings.
Spots danced in front of her eyes; a strange hollow sound echoed through her head, and she collapsed, almost shaking from the numb shock that she was no longer in her body.
Tommy Oliver was late again. He had figured a plan to counteract his habitual tardiness, but the plan had failed as he had forgotten it.
Oh, well. Such was life. Again Tommy
reminded himself to buy a book on improving memory, knowing that he would forget about it until the next time he forgot something.
Unexpectedly, he tripped.
Rolling before he even hit the ground, Tommy pulled himself into a fighting stance, ready for anything.
Except what he saw.
Laying unconscious on the pavement was a girl. Tommy carefully checked her pulse. It was strong, a good sign. She seemed to be breathing fine, so he hazarded a guess that she would be okay until the ambulance came.
Jessica pried her eyes open. *Cold.* Her brain registered the word then moved on to a more pleasant subject. *White.* That made sense. It's cold and white. It was the next item that confused her.
*Lemons..?* No, she corrected herself. Disinfectant. It smells like disinfectant, like a hospital.
*I'm in a hospital? What on earth happened to me?*
Her head hurt in a way that reminded her of the time she fell off her bicycle and collided face-first with the pavement at thirty miles per hour.
Remembering, she reached for the scar it had left on her lip.
Nothing. Her face had changed as well.
An orderly appeared, checked her pulse, and then noted, "You're awake."
*I beg to differ,* she thought sarcastically. Aloud, all she managed was, "Wuh ahy Ah?" Her mouth felt like she had chewed a cotton sweater.
"You're in Angel Grove General Hospital," the orderly replied.
*Angel Grove..?* Jessica suddenly felt the room spin. "Whoa!" he cried.
"Stay with me!"
The haze cleared from her head abruptly. "What happened to me?" she asked.
"We were hoping you could tell us," the orderly replied. He examined her chart for a moment. "A young man found you unconscious this morning. Do you remember anything strange happening?"
*Like suddenly being on the other side of the continent?* "Not... really."
"No monsters? No aliens?"
*I really _am_ in Angel Grove. Well, when in Rome...* "There was a guy with a metal face, I think. I don't remember much after that."
The orderly nodded. "Yeah. That was a Cog. Most people have the same reaction you did. Well, other than that knock on the head, you seem fine." He put the chart down and smiled. "You can leave as soon as you're ready."
And Jessica was left alone to wonder.
*I'm in an episode of the Power Rangers,* she thought numbly, pulling herself out of the hospital bed. She found a mirror and looked to see just how strange her new body was.
She was tall and thin. Her hair was red-purple and pulled back into a braid that reached down to her ankles. Her nose was narrow. The mole on her cheek was missing.
Shaking her head, she reached for her jacket, which was resting on a chair with her purse.
*Wait a minute. I didn't have my purse with me this morning.* Jessica grabbed it and checked behind the cosmetic mirror. There was the picture she had drawn of Sailor Moon, like there was supposed to.
There was also a California driver's license. The picture was of her current body, and the name on the license was "Jessica Anna Ypsi", age nineteen. Jessica read it again. Ypsi. *Why am I not surprised?*
She replaced the mirror and the drawing, and checked the main pocket. In her wallet was a birth certificate (again for Jessica Ypsi), a credit card and two hundred dollars in cash. In the side pocket was a note and a set of car keys. She read the note.
Hey, how do you like the new look? It took me a while,
but here you are. Sorry I couldn't use your real name, but
Mauch is a fairly rare surname. By now, you've found the cash,
the keys, and the driver's license. The cash won't last for too
long, so get a job! Anyway, I got you another gift. It's in
the parking lot. You'll know it when you see it. Inside are
more instructions. I'll talk to you later!
Jessica looked at the keys. Seconds later, she was in the parking lot, staring at a beautiful cherry red '68 Mustang convertible with a Michigan license plate.
She looked at the keys again. *I just hope it's an automatic,* she thought numbly.
For ten millennia, he had stood watch, waiting for the inevitable to happen. As it was, he thought it would come a lot sooner.
*Well,* he thought. *At least she didn't come during "Beavis and Butthead".*
Jessica pulled up into the parking lot of the Angel Grove Youth Center Gym and Juice Bar, and then consulted with the note again. "Go inside," it read. "And wait. Maybe you can ask Ernie for a job."
Jess shrugged. It was obvious that she had planned something for herself, though what was beyond her.
As she entered the Youth Center, a man she identified as Ernie called out to her, "Hey, wouldya like to try a fruit soda?"
Not knowing how to respond, she said yes, and five minutes later found herself drinking some carbonated, caffeine-high substance out of a coconut and wondering whether or not it was a good idea.
Meanwhile, in the gym section of the Youth Center, some sort of sparring contest was going on between two guys. Jessica moved closer to get a better view.
"Wow," she whispered. "They're pretty good."
"Yeah," whispered another girl next to her. "Jason, the guy in black, is a black belt, third degree."
Jess nodded, not really knowing what a 'black belt, third degree' ment, but still being rather impressed. "What about the other guy?"
"Tommy? He's a black belt, too. I don't know what degree, though. I never asked."
Jess nodded again, and continued to watch the match. It seemed to end as they had a standoff, and then gave each other high fives. She wasn't quite sure what to make of it. Everything she had seen so far had only confirmed her original conclusion, that she was really in Angel Grove where the Power Rangers lived. Either that, or she was having a very detailed hallucination.
She turned to the girl next to her, and suddenly realized who she had been talking to. "You--you're Tanya Sloan, aren't you?"
Tanya looked surprised. "You know me?"
Jessica considered telling her everything. "Well... yes and no." At Tanya's confused expression, she added, "It would take too long to explain. Besides, you wouldn't believe me anyway."
Tanya just smiled and nodded, a thing, Jessica realized, that she would have done if their places had been reversed.
Jess decided to call a retreat. She went back to the bar and ordered another fruit soda, carefully keeping an eye on Tanya and Jason and Tommy. They sat down at a table with three other people, Adam, Rocky, and Kat, she noted. They were engaged in lively conversation for a while, then suddenly stopped.
They moved swiftly into the hall; they had obviously had practice doing so. Jessica handed Ernie some money for the drinks and followed them.
"We read you," Tommy said softly into his communicator.
_Rangers,_ a familiar tinny robot voice said. _Something strange is going on in the Power Chamber._
"Strange in what way?" Tanya asked.
_Um, well... It's sorta hard to describe._
"Okay," Tommy said. "We'll teleport immediately." The teens reached for their teleportation buttons.
Kat gasped. Standing unnoticed in a corner was another person.
She was tall, with an unusually long red-purple braid. "Take me with you," she said.
"Just who are you?" Tanya demanded.
"I'm a friend," the girl replied. "Look, I know you don't trust me, and you have good reason not too."
"But?" Tommy prompted.
"But I'm mixed up in this whole thing too. I received instructions to come here and wait, and I have no doubt that this is what I was supposed to wait for."
Jason shook his head in disbelief. "Instructions!" He cried incredulously. "Instructions from whom?"
"You wouldn't believe me," was the answer.
Tanya leaned forward. "Look, that's the second time you've said that. What makes you think that we won't believe it?"
"Because," she insisted. "I don't quite believe it myself. It's weird."
Kat spoke up. "We've seen some pretty weird stuff," she said.
"You never know, maybe we will believe you."
The girl shook her head. "I don't think so, but here goes nothing. The instructions I've been getting are from myself."
"I don't believe it," Rocky said with conviction.
"Told ya so," the girl replied.
"How can you get instructions from yourself?" Tanya asked.
"I've been leaving myself notes. Really, it makes a bit more sense if I start at the beginning. So take me to the Power Chamber.
You'll get chewed out by Zordon, I'm sure, but I'll explain it to him."
The Rangers' jaws all dropped. "How..?" Tommy started.
"...Do I know?" she finished for him. "That's part of the story."
The Rangers quickly formed a huddle, apparently trying to decide what to do. When the huddle broke, Tommy turned to the girl and said, "Okay."
It was officially Jessica's first time being teleported. Of course, she had been teleported from Michigan to Angel Grove, but that had been a totally different experience. That was like falling into a lake and discovering you have gills. This felt like she was a puzzle that had fallen apart and then put together again.
When she appeared in the Power Chamber, Jess noted with surprise that all of her limbs were still attached.
"Rangers!" The little robot cried. "Zordon is--" Alpha 5 suddenly noticed Jessica. "Intruder alert!" he squeaked. "Ay-yi-yi!"
A massive headache struck at that moment. "Alpha!" she shouted.
The robot was silent. "I'm a friend," she explained. "And that teleportation thingy left me with a migraine."
"Who are you?" Alpha asked.
"That can wait," Tommy said, surprising everyone, including Jessica. She had been preparing to explain the day's curious events.
"Alpha, you said something about Zordon?"
The robot pried his attention from Jess and said, "Yes! Look!" He pointed to the tube. Zordon's mouth was moving, but no sound came out. As they watched, another face appeared, its features too blurred to make out. The mouth moved, again no sound.
"Weird," Jessica said. "It's like someone hit the mute button on Zordon's tube."
"And that's not all," Alpha continued, holding up a piece of paper. "A few minutes ago, this note appeared, and--"
Jessica held up her hand. "Wait. Is it addressed both to and from 'Jess'?"
Alpha seemed taken aback. "Um..." he looked at it briefly, "Yeah. Why?"
"Because I'm Jess. It's for me." Before Alpha could respond, she snatched it away and began reading it. Then she went over to the computer terminal and typed a long code.
AH, YOU'RE HERE.
Everyone looked up at the tube. "Zordon?" they said in unison.
THIS MAY DISTURB YOU, Zordon said, BUT MY REPLACEMENT HAS COME.
"Replacement?" Tommy repeated. "Zordon, you can't leave us!
You've been here forever."
TEN THOUSAND YEARS IS HARDLY FOREVER, Zordon replied with what may have been wry humor. IT'S MY TIME TO GO. I'LL BE BACK, DON'T WORRY.
IT'S LIKE AN INTERDIMENTIONAL COFFEE-BREAK.
"But why does it have to be now?" Tanya asked.
BECAUSE JESSICA IS HERE.
Jess looked up in surprise. "What do I have to do with anything?"
YOU'LL FIND OUT SOON ENOUGH, Zordon assured her. GOODBYE. And with that, the tube went blank. Moments later, another face appeared.
It was sharp, with short cropped hair, dark eyebrows and a thin goatee.
HELLO, LOSERS, it said.
Jessica looked up again and gasped. "*Jared*?"
"You know this guy?" Jason asked.
"I wish I didn't," she replied. "He's my brother."
THAT'S RIGHT. I'M HERE TO PLAY GOD WITH ALL OF YOUR MISERABLE LITTLE LIVES.
_Ha. That's what you think, Jar-Head._
The unexpected retort came from the viewing globe. The fuzzy picture showed a slightly chubby girl with short orangish hair and a mole on her right cheek.
"And who's that?" Jason asked.
"That's me," Jessica replied, nonplussed. "The real me. Before my body transplant."
_Never mind. Jess, I'm assuming that you haven't told them._
_Well, wouldn't now be a good time?_
Jessica sighed and started into the long story as she had experienced it.
_And now I'll add my two-bits,_ said the Jessica on the viewing globe. _You see, I have a saying. "Whoever writes the story is Goddess." And this is a story I'm writing. If you look really hard, you can see the computer on the viewing globe. So I'm Goddess._
Tommy was almost afraid to ask. "So what's with Zordon's replacement?" he said, jerking his thumb over his shoulder at Jared.
"Well, think about it," Jess said, smiling, "Z hasn't had caffeine in over ten thousand years."
_Or alcohol._ Both Jessica's suddenly got a vision of Zordon hammered and burst into giggles.
"I'm serious," Tommy said.
_So am I. See, in this story, Jess needs a brotherly figure and, well, Zordon just didn't cut it. At the end of the story, Zordon will return. I promise._
"Yeah, well," Jessica said, "what about me?"
_Congrats. You are now part of the team._
"You mean I'm a Power Ranger."
_Not really. You're part of the team, like Billy was. You do have some special abilities that will come up when you need them. Oh, and you also have some very interesting reflexes._
_But be careful. I can't protect you all the time. There'd be no plot if I did. And remember, you have limitations, like the Rangers._ The serious note passed abruptly, and the Jessica on the viewing globe smiled. _You're in Angel Grove, sister. Have fun!_
The viewing globe went black. Jessica leaned back on a consol and muttered, "Yeah, I'm here. So now what?"
He had a name. It was self given, of course. Any creature, organic or otherwise, gave itself a name, unless it was too stupid to realize that things have names.
So he called himself "Gasket". His father, the masculine associated non-organic entity that created him, called himself "king", so Gasket applied a similar term to himself. He was "prince". Prince Gasket.
And he was going to rule the universe.
Rita Repulsa pulled her eye away from the lens of her "SuperView 2000" brand magic telescope. "Zeddie?" She screeched mildly, turning to her husband.
Zedd looked up from his TV. "Can it wait a while?" he asked, irritated. "I'm in the middle of watching 'The Ricki Lake Show'."
Rita sighed. She never had developed a taste for daytime TV.
"Those Power Pests have a new friend. Let's mess up her life."
Zedd was silent.
"I'm thinking," he explained. "I can't come up with a good plot on such short notice."
Jessica sat at a table in the Juice Bar, staring absently into a fruit soda. The day's curious events had cemented something into her brain, she just couldn't figure out what. *Brotherly figure, I--she said. Special abilities. What am I missing?*
Vaguely, she noticed the hand on her shoulder. Absently, she wondered at the sudden tautness of her arm and shoulder muscles. And suddenly--she blinked. Pinned on the floor, much like a giant butterfly and groaning with just-realized pain, was Rocky.
Jessica's brow creased. "Did I do that?" She murmured to herself. She extended her hand to Rocky, helping him to his feet.
"How'd you do that?" He asked, shaking his head, as if to clear the cobwebs. "I've never seen anyone move that fast!"
Jess shrugged. "Beats me. I'm assuming that it's one of those 'interesting reflexes' of mine. Knowing me, I probably have a few surprises up my sleeves."
"Okay, Rita. This is a good friend of mine, Mistress 9. She will go down to Earth and posses that little teenager, and turn her into the evil Sailor Saturn!" Zedd ended his short monologue with a flourish, Mistress 9 idly twirling her long black hair.
Rita pinched the bridge of her nose, as if to ward off a headache. "Zedd, honey," she said. "It's been done."
Zedd seemed to deflate. "Oh." He waved his wand and Mistress 9 turned into a small glowing sphere which he threw out the window of the winabago.
"Okay," he said. "Plan B..."
*****SOMEWHERE IN JAPAN*****
The glowing sphere landed near a good-looking middle-aged man.
Mistress 9 broke free of the sphere, landing in his lap.
"Uh, excuse me..." the man stuttered uncertainly.
Mistress 9 focused on him. "Are you Professor Tomoe?"
"Um, why, yes."
"And do you have a daughter named Hotaru?"
Mistress 9 smiled wickedly. "Perfect."
*****END OF MEANINGLESS INTERLUDE*****
Rita smiled wickedly. "Ooh, I like! I like! When do we start?"
Zedd faced in the direction Earth was. "Soon, my dear. Very soon." The two suddenly broke into uncontrollable laughter.
"...Oh, I don't know," Jess responded. "I like good plots, intrigue, mystery, suspense, and general insanity. I suspect that's what I've got planned."
"You seem relatively unfazed by all this," Rocky noted.
Jessica shrugged. "I already went through the shock. You're seeing the 'I think I'm hallucinating' stage."
"But still, you're taking this very calmly."
Jessica rested her chin on her arm and shrugged again. "What would you do if suddenly you're on the other side of the continent and in a TV show?"
That took Rocky aback. "I don't know. Probably what you're doing," he admitted.
"Staring into an undigestible drink and wondering if you've gone off the deep end?"
"You haven't gone off the deep end," Rocky assured her.
She parried his words expertly. "That's exactly what I'd expect you to say if you were a hallucination."
"Well, at least you haven't had a person suddenly appear and tell you that your life is a TV show in an alternate reality."
Jessica nodded. "Point taken." She took a swig of her drink and turned back to Rocky. "So are you just going to sit there and watch me mull?"
Rocky was taken aback. "Ah... no. I just... y'know, wanted to... check on you. Before I left for softball practice. Yeah, uh...
bye!" He grabbed his stuff and left, rather hurriedly.
She smiled to herself. He was adorable.
"Hey, DeSantos!" Coach Delanee yelled. Rocky looked at him guiltily. Delanee had a slight beef about tardiness, which made Rocky a Big Mac with fries.
Delanee pointed one huge finger at the bench on the sidelines.
Rocky sighed. He sat at the bench, mulling in a way quite similar to Jessica's. That made him think, mostly about her. She was a knockout, that was for sure. Even the 'real' her, as she put it, was cute.
*Argh,* he thought. *But she's two years older than me! There's no way she'd be interested in me, a mere high schooler.* But the way she talked, it sounded like she was just out of high school. It also sounded like she'd had some horrible things happen in her life, things she didn't want to talk about. But she did mention her love of writing.
That brought his mind back to the other Jessica. She was writing the story... No, that wasn't it.
**She had written herself into the story!**
And that ment...
CAN'T YOU SHUT THAT DAMN THING OFF!?!
Alpha adjusted the controls, his mechanical fingers a blur over the consol. The warning klaxon ceased its screeching, allowing Alpha and his newly appointed boss to think.
GET THOSE LOSERS HERE, Jared commanded.
Alpha reached for the controls and stopped. "What do I tell them?"
WHAT'S HAPPENING, Jared nodded his huge holographic head toward the viewing globe. GIANT ROBOT MONSTER HEADED THIS WAY. WHAT'S MORE TO TELL?
Alpha liked Zordon better. At least *he* was predictable.
AND CALL JESS, Jared added.
"But she doesn't have a communicator," Alpha reminded him.
THAT'S WHY I SAID *CALL*. USE THE FRIGGIN' PHONE!
If Alpha had eyes, he would have rolled them.
Rocky arrived in the Power Chamber to see a slightly distraught Alpha talking... on the phone?
"..No, this is *not* a prank call," Alpha said, irritated.
"Just give the phone to the girl with the purple hair!.. AARRGGHH!!" Alpha slammed the receiver back onto the hook. "He hung up on me!"
"What's going on?" Rocky asked, confused.
MR. MICROSOFT HERE, Jared explained, CAN'T GET MY SISTER ON THE PHONE.
"Let me try," Rocky offered, picking up the phone and hitting redial.
Expletives exploded from the receiver. Rocky winced, his ears turning a delicate shade of pink. He didn't even know what most of the words ment! When the person at the other end paused for breath, Rocky ventured, "Ernie?"
Ernie paused, then said, "Rocky, jeez! I'm sorry! I've been getting these prank calls lately..."
"It's okay," Rocky said. "Um, Ernie, is that red-head with the six foot braid still there?"
"Uh, lemme check.... yeah, she's still here. Why?"
"I, uh, need to talk to her," Rocky said.
Ernie said "oh," and then called to Jessica, "Hey, phone call!"
Rocky was taken aback for a moment. "Jessica?" He said.
"Thatsh m'name, don' wear i' ou'." Her voice was slurred, the words slow and drunken, like she'd had some alcohol. But the Juice Bar didn't sell any alcoholic beverages.
"Are you okay?" He asked, worried.
"Oh, Roxy, 'm fiiiine. Jusht a liiiiittle tipsy." She laughed.
*Tipsy?* Rocky thought. *On what!?* Jessica continued, her voice clearer, "Whatcha call for?"
He glanced at the viewing globe. The robot was juggling a handful of semi trucks, and seemed to be enjoying it. "There's a robot that needs to get it's ass kicked. I suggest you get somewhere where you can teleport unnoticed."
"Nu-uh! I got a car; I'll drive."
He blinked, surprised. "But teleporting--"
She interrupted. "...Gives me a headache. Tell Jared I'll be there in a few minutes." She giggled, and then hung up.
Rocky put the receiver down in time to hear Tommy's battle cry, "It's Morphin time!"
"Zeo Ranger I, Pink!"
"Zeo Ranger II, Yellow!"
"Zeo Ranger III, Blue!"
"Zeo Ranger IV, Green!"
"Zeo Ranger V, Red!"
The robot paused in its juggling as the Zeo Rangers arrived in their patented multi-colored flash of light. Its optical sensors seemed to narrow in disgust. "I am robot Omega, designation 113-459. But you can call me Greg. Prepare to die!!!"
It launched one of the semis at the Rangers. Red, Green and Pink leapt to catch the semi, while Blue and Yellow concentrated on the robot. It was large and heavily armored, but it was slightly top-heavy.
"I go high," Yellow said, "you go low."
They jumped at the robot, Yellow aiming to kick it in the head, Blue aiming to make it lose its footing. It swatted Yellow away like a fly, kicking Blue in the chest savagely. Blue stumbled back, clutching his side. *Damn! Not another cracked rib! Mom's gonna kill me!*
Yellow came up beside him. "You okay?" she asked.
Blue bit his lip against the pain, "I'll be fine in a minute," he replied. Red, Green and Pink faced the robot.
Red pointed an accusing finger at it. "Tell Prince Gasket that nothing he can do will stop the Power Rangers!"
The robot seemed to laugh. Suddenly, giant razor sharp blades sprouted from its body. "Tell him yourself, Ranger, ON YOUR WAY TO HELL!!!"
The robot moved forward and began slicing away at the Rangers.
Red and Green dodged it, but one of the blades slashed Pink across her breasts. Ignoring the pain it caused, she slammed her boot into its face. "Damn you," she swore through ragged breaths. "You'd better pray that heals before my next recital!"
"Kat!" Red cried. The robot used the distraction to send the Ranger flying.
"Tommy!" Pink screamed.
Red sat up, his friends gathered around him. "'M okay, 'm okay," he murmured and he hauled himself to his feet.
Blue suddenly looked around. "Where's Jason?" he asked. "We could really use some Gold Ranger power."
"He's off scuba diving," Red replied. "We'll have to improvise until he gets here."
Yellow suddenly asked, "What's with Jason and scuba diving, anyway?"
She never got her answer. The robot launched itself at them, intent on making Ranger shish ka bobs.
Lt. Kosky wasn't sure if the car was real or not. He had been patrolling the mountain pass highway all afternoon with a rookie, Officer Paegellan, and had seen nothing except tumbleweed and a bunch of cacti.
Then a car sped by. At first, Kosky thought it was just a cruel hallucination conjured by boredom and coffee, but then Paegellan put on the lights and followed it. The car slowed and pulled over.
Kosky approached the driver. She was in her late teens, had an athletic build, and the oddest shade of red hair he had ever seen. It looked purple.
She looked up at him sheepishly. "Guess I was driving a little fast, huh?"
**That** was an understatement. "Ma'am," Kosky admonished, "this is a highway, not a runway."
She grimaced. "I'm dead, Jim," she quipped.
He started writing up her ticket. "I'll need to see your license and registry." As he looked at her license, he saw her last name.
Ypsi. That looked familiar. *It's short for Ypsilanti,* his brain supplied. His brother lived in Ypsilanti, Michigan. He glanced at the registry. She had bought her car in Ann Arbor, the neighbor of Ypsilanti. *Strange,* he thought.
He returned her papers and handed her the ticket. "Drive slower next time, Ms. Ypsi."
"At least," she muttered, "until I get a plane."
Kosky returned to the Patrol car as she drove away--slower, he noticed thankfully. The world was so full of danger already. It had no need of another 'lead foot' driver.
He shook his head. Her name, her registry, it was such a coincidence.
Lt. Kosky didn't believe in coincidence.
WHAT TOOK YOU SO LONG? Jared demanded.
Jessica sighed. She considered getting in his holographic face, but waved her speeding ticket around instead. "I got a friggin' ticket trying to get here! *You* teleport and see how much *you* like having your atoms scrambled!"
She stopped, calmed herself and imagined that the argument had never happened. *God, Jared, you'd think phsycologically scarring me would be enough. Now I have to take orders from you too? Great stuff for my therapist.* "Rocky mentioned a robot needing its ass kicked," she prompted.
YEAH. HELP THEM OUT.
"How," she said flatly.
I DON'T KNOW. *YOU'RE* GODDESS.
"Thank you for your support. Rangers," she said as she turned on the comm system. "Rangers, come in."
_...Rangers, come in._
"We read you, Jess," Red answered, dodging another blade.
"Please tell me you have good news."
_Well, I'd be lying if I did. That guy is mopping the floor with your butts. I suggest you get out the battle mecha._
"Thanks for sharing," Red heard Blue wheeze from his position under a few hundred pounds of concrete.
Red quickly assessed the situation. Blue was pinned, god only knew how bad he was hurt, Pink was injured, Yellow and Green were worn out from avoiding hits. Red had a concussion himself. He could see blood splattered on the inside of his helmet. "This is not good," he growled to himself.
"Tanya, Adam, hold off the robot. Kat, help me with Rocky."
_Are the zords ready?_
Jessica checked one of the displays. "Yeah, Tommy. They should converge on your position in twelve seconds."
_What about the Red Battlezord?_
"Tommy," Jess sighed. "In your current condition, I wouldn't trust you to walk in a straight line, let alone drive a twelve story mecha around Angel Grove."
Tommy muttered something, but the communicator didn't pick it up.
Jessica thanked the Maker for small miracles.
"Alpha, hand me that read-out." The small robot complied, muttering a soft "ay-yi-yi" at the figures. Seeing the sheet, she said, "Ay-yi-yi is right." She pinched the bridge of her nose, as if to ward off a headache. "Have you reached Jason yet?" she asked Alpha. He shook his head.
GREAT, Jared muttered. MY FIRST DAY ON THE JOB, AND WE'RE ALL GONNA GET KILLED.
[End of Part Two]