Timeline: A week after Marital bliss.
“You’re doing great, Justin,” Kim called from the sidelines, “I know you’ll mop up the floor with everybody in your age group.”
“Thanks, Kim,” Justin replied, before going for a spinning roundhouse kick. Billy ducked and tried to sweep the leg, but Justin easily jumped over the effort. Billy then went for a roundhouse of his own, but Justin ducked and swept the leg. This time, Billy went down.
“Whoa, I think I’ve had enough, Justin,” Billy said, putting his hands up in surrender as he got back to his feet. “You’re just too good for me.”
Justin grinned. “You’re good, Billy,” he said, “You just need to work on your speed, that’s all.”
Billy nodded. “Taking advice from a 13 year old, how embarrassing,” he joked, “I’ll remember that, though.”
“Hey, tiny,” a voice boomed, “How about trying me on for size?”
Justin turned, and saw a young man walking up. He recognized him as Arthur, from school. He was the middle school bully, and Justin was probably going to face him later in the tournament. “No thanks, Arthur,” Justin replied, turning away.
“What’s the matter, chicken?” Arthur taunted.
Justin turned back to the bully, a vengeful gleam in his eye. “Nobody calls me chicken, especially not you,” he replied. The Green Lantern Ninjetti Ranger stepped out onto the mats and gestured to Arthur. “Bring it on.”
Billy stepped out between the two, as Arthur took his place on the mats. “Save it for the match, guys,” he said. Justin and Arthur both glared at him, so the Blue Ranger stepped back to play referee. And just in time, as the two teens clashed.
Nearby, Tommy, Jason, Rocky, Adam, and Zack were training for their own tournament. It was kind of a tag team match, with Tommy, Jason, and Rocky as the main fighters, and Adam and Zack as the alternates.
“How’s your leg?” Adam asked Tommy, as he took Jason’s place in the ring.
“You’re just as bad as Kim,” Tommy joked, “But my leg’s doing fine. A little sore, but nothing bad.” To prove his point, he did a spinning roundhouse kick on the leg that had been hurt in the last battle against Zedd and Rita’s stooges.
“All right, I get the point,” Adam replied, ducking the kick.
“Whoa, check out Justin,” Rocky said, catching the attention of all of his teammates. The team stopped their practicing, to watch the youngest Ranger fight the bully Arthur.
Justin went for a spinning roundhouse, but Arthur easily ducked. The middle school bully then went for a sweep kick, which Justin easily jumped over. The young bully was quick to get to his feet, rushing Justin.
But Justin was quick, and monkey flipped Arthur. The young bully landed on his feet, however, and tried to take Justin’s head off when he jumped to his feet with a well timed and placed roundhouse kick.
Justin had different ideas, as he ducked the kick and swept the leg from underneath Arthur. “Give up?” he offered, extending a hand to help the bully up from the ground.
“No way, whimp,” Arthur said. He kicked away the hand with one foot... and nailed Justin between the legs with the other. Justin dropped to his knees, and the bully tried kicking him in the face.
Justin was able to move to deflect the blow, but the kick still caught him pretty good. He fell onto his back. Billy rushed over to him, as Arthur tried to get to the young Ninjetti Lantern Ranger. “Let me at him,” Justin said, trying to get to Arthur.
Billy held him back. “How many fingers am I holding up?” he asked, holding up two fingers.
“Four,” Justin replied.
“This match is over,” Billy announced.
Arthur glared at both of them. “Whimp,” he muttered to Justin, before walking away.
Billy gently led Justin over to the Rangers’ table, where the Green Ranger promptly fell into his usual seat. “Are you all right, Justin?” Kim asked. The girls were all there, talking about a shopping trip and watching the boys at the same time.
“I’m fine,” Justin insisted.
“He’s not fine,” Billy replied, “He’s got slight double vision, and his nose was almost broken.”
“Not to mention any damage in the lower regions,” Rocky added, as him and the others joined them.
Justin winced when he mentioned that. “Yeah, tell me about it,” he muttered softly. His groin was hurting quite a bit from the cheap shot Arthur had gotten in.
“Maybe you shouldn’t compete tonight, buddy,” Tommy said.
“No way,” Justin said, “I’m going to compete. I’m going to show Arthur up, big time. He’s going to wish he had never messed with me.”
“Justin...” Tommy admonished.
“I know, I know,” Justin replied, “I’m not supposed to use my martial arts for vengeance. But, he wasn’t playing fair either.”
“You can’t sink to his level,” Trini murmured, “Or you’ll risk becoming just like him.”
“Again, maybe you should sit out tonight’s tournament, Justin,” Tommy offered.
“No, thank you,” Justin responded, “I’m going to be there tonight. I’m not going to miss that tournament for anything, and that’s final.” He crossed his arms, daring the older Rangers to argue with him.
Tommy sighed. “Whatever you say, buddy,” he said, patting Justin on the back.
Suddenly, there was an explosion outside. Just about everybody in the Youth Center started panicking. There was a lot of shuffling and shouting, the latter mostly sounding like people were getting trampled and were in pain.
“Everybody, calm down!!!” Ernie shouted over the noise, “If you will all follow me, I’ll take you to the monster shelter in the basement.” As he started towards the basement stairs, he winked at the Rangers.
As everybody else started following the owner of the Youth Center, the Rangers lagged behind. “We’d better see what’s up,” Tommy murmured to the others. They stood up from their table. The Lantern Rangers headed for the back room, and Tommy brought his communicator to his lips. “What’s going on, Zordon?”
“Zedd and Rita have apparently made a pact with a villain named Braniac,” Zordon replied, “He is attacking innocent bystanders near the Youth Center. Morph and stop him at all costs.”
“Right,” Tommy said, cutting the transmission. “Braniac, huh? Well, we can take him. Ready?” The others nodded. “All right, it’s morphin’ time!!! White Ranger power.”
“Blue Ranger power!!!”
“Pink Ranger power!!!”
“Red Ranger power!!!”
“Yellow Ranger power!!!”
“Green Ranger power!!!”
“Gold Ranger power!!!”
“Silver Ranger power!!!”
“Purple Ranger power!!!”
With that, they morphed and teleported away.
As the Rangers hit the battle field, Justin took a look around. The few people that were still there were able to scatter since the Rangers had distracted the enemy. A few Tenga were lurking about, but the strange figure was what caught the Green Ninjetti Lantern Rangers attention the most.
The creature was very tall, towering over even Tommy. His body was mostly covered in a purple robe, but what was visible was green. He a Vincent Price like mustache, and a large head.
“So nice to meet you, Lantern Rangers,” Braniac said, “I’ve heard so much about you from Zedd and Rita. Knowing how bumbling those two are, I think I’ll decide to ignore their briefing, at least for the moment. Let’s dance, shall we? Tengas, attack!!!”
At Braniac’s command, the Tenga attacked the Rangers. Justin found himself squaring off against two of the lizard birds. They were persistent, and Justin had to call upon his light saber, but he eventually wiped the floor with them.
Meanwhile, Braniac was attacking the others one at a time, easily pinning them and slipping something around their necks. “Now, for the fun to begin,” he declared, before pushing a button on his belt buckle.
Justin had just finished off his second Tenga, when he was besieged by the other Rangers. “What are you doing, guys?” he asked.
“Get the Green Ranger, my puppets,” Braniac said, “Because he’s so young, his mind is too pure for the control collars to work properly. His head shall be a great trophy for Zedd and Rita.”
“Guys, you have to fight it,” Justin pleaded, but it was no use. While most of the other Rangers pinned the young man down, Jason stood over him. The Gold Ninjetti Lantern Ranger called upon his sword and raised it above his head, apparently intent on decapitating Justin. The young Ranger closed his eyes.
Suddenly, there was a whooshing sound, and Justin felt the weight of the other Rangers lifted off of him. He opened his eyes, and his jaw dropped to see who his savior was. “This game ends here and now, Braniac,” Superman declared.
“Ah, Kal-el,” Braniac said, “How good of you to join us. I was hoping to kill you as an added bonus. Tengas!!!”
At his command, a few of the lizard birds appeared out of nowhere and rushed Superman, who easily batted them away. “I have no time to play, Braniac,” he rumbled, “If you want to fight me, bring it on!!!”
“With pleasure,” Braniac said. He slipped off his robe, to reveal a powerful body underneath.
Justin couldn’t help but think that not even the legendary Man of Steel could best this creature. ‘Maybe not by himself, but he’s not alone,’ the youngest Ranger mused quietly. He went up to stand beside Superman. “You have to face us both, Braniac,” he interjected.
“A double bonus, then,” Braniac replied, “I get paid for the deaths or enslaving of the Rangers, and I get to kill the last son of Krypton while I’m at it. Two against one, eh? Well, have at thee!!!”
With that, Braniac lunged at his two opponents. He caught Superman with a hard punch, and Justin with a kick to the head. The Ranger went flying, while the Man of Steel just staggered.
Justin quickly recovered from the kick and glanced up, and saw the two going at it tooth and nail. “I’d be crazy to get between those two again,” he muttered. He then noticed that he landed close to where Superman had knocked the other Rangers.
Working quickly, Justin destroyed the mind control collars that Braniac had placed around the others necks. Then he turned back to Superman and Braniac, and it seemed that the villain was getting the better of the superhero.
Justin quickly made his way across the battle field and jumped into the air, bringing his light saber down to slash Braniac. It didn’t pierce the ugly villain’s skin, but it did distract him long enough for Superman to knock him out with a big overhand double ax handle like blow.
Superman walked up to the Green Ninjetti Lantern Ranger. “Thank you for your assistance, Green Ranger,” he said, “I wouldn’t have been able to defeat him without your help.”
“No, thank you, Superman,” Justin replied, “If you hadn’t come along when you did, I would have been killed, by my own teammates no less.” The two shook hands.
“I’ve got to be going,” Superman said, “I have to drop Braniac off somewhere, and then I’ve got to get to a JLA meeting. I hope we meet again.”
“Same here,” Justin responded. With that, Superman threw Braniac over his shoulder and flew off.
Justin turned to his friends, and saw them just now regaining consciousness. “What happened?” Jason asked.
“Yeah, and who got the license number of that truck,” Rocky joked.
“Come on, guys,” Justin answered, “Let’s get back to the Youth Center. Boy, do I have a story to tell you.”
Justin sat down next to Kim. “I’m so nervous, I think I might throw up,” he said.
“Don’t worry, Justin,” Kim said, “I know you’ll do great.” Justin smiled, but her words of advice didn’t do much to alleviate his nerves. It was tournament time, and Justin had gone all of the way to the final match.
Tommy, Rocky, Adam, Jason, and Zack had been overly prepared for the tournament, but, because of an injury to the Purple Ninjetti Lantern Ranger during the fight with Braniac, Billy had taken Zack’s place as an alternate. That particular team had won their own tournament, winning money for Angel Haven Children’s Home, where Justin lived.
Justin had already won a trophy himself, for most original kata. Him and the other Rangers had worked for hours on end developing the kata, and it really impressed the judges. Now all Justin had to do was wait, and see if he could come away with a second trophy.
The trouble was that Justin was going against Arthur in the finals of their age group’s tournament. He knew that he could get the better of the bully in a fair fight, but who said that it would be a fully fair fight?
“And now, for the finals in the 13-15 age group tournament,” the announcer said, “First, is Arthur Xaviar, representing his family’s private dojo, the Diobei dojo.” Arthur walked up to take his place on one end of the mats, and was booed. “And now, Justin Raynor, representing the Angel Grove Youth Center.”
Justin was met with a standing ovation as he made his way out to the mats. He faced across from Arthur. The two glared at each other. The referee stepped out onto the mats, ready to officiate the match.
“Now, you both know the rules,” the referee said, “No rough stuff, Xaviar. Now, bow to me.” Both contestants bowed to him. “Now, bow to each other.” Both Justin and Arthur were reluctant, but they did bow to each other. “Now, fight!!!”
Arthur took the offensive, as he tried to take Justin’s head off with a running side kick. The Green Ranger ducked the kick, and tripped the bully up. Arthur growled loudly, as he jumped to his feet, but he was too slow, as Justin tagged him in the back when he was to his feet. “Point goes to Justin Raynor,” the announcer said.
Arthur got the next point, as he tricked Justin into coming at him. He easily flipped the Green Ranger and tagged him in the chest. “Point goes to Arthur Xaviar,” the announcer said.
Arthur got the next point, as well, but he took the offensive this time. He went for a tornado kick, which Justin ducked, but then caught the youngest Lantern Ranger with a kick to the ribs. “Point goes to Mr. Xaviar again,” the announcer said.
It went without saying that Justin got the next point. He had charged Arthur and, at the last second, flipped through the air. He had surprised the bully, and came up behind him. A quick kick to the ribs got him the point. “And now, to decide the winner,” the announcer declared, “Sudden death time.”
The referee didn’t break them up, as per the rules. Justin went for another kick, but Arthur quickly spun around, blocked it, and tried for a punch. Justin easily blocked that, and moved away, out of arms reach.
Arthur then charged Justin, who then tried to flip him. The bully twisted around, landed on his feet, and tried to flip the youngest Ranger. But Justin twisted around as well, landing on his feet. Pulling his hands away, Justin then tried for a flurry of punches, but Arthur was able to block all of them.
Arthur then tried for a kick, but Justin blocked it. Justin then tried for his own kick, only to have it caught. Desperate, Justin thought back to his training and thought of a move that could help.
Before Arthur could react, Justin quickly did a back flip. The bully was so surprised, he let go of Justin’s foot. When Justin completed the flip and landed on his feet, he lashed out with a snap kick to the stomach.
The blow connected, and Arthur fell back, the wind knocked right out of him. "Winner!!!” the referee said, having to shout over the roar of the crowd. He wasn’t able to raise Justin’s hand, since the young man was jumping about in celebration.
After several minutes, Justin finally stopped jumping around, and the ref raised his hand. That was all Justin remembered, before he fainted from the sheer excitement of winning the tournament.
When Justin regained consciousness, he was surprised when Arthur gave him his trophy. “You did a good job, Justin,” the bully said, “I have a new respect for you.” Justin had a feeling that Arthur wouldn’t pick on him anymore.”
“Thanks, Arthur,” Justin replied, “You did a great job, too. You really kept me on my toes. I wish we both could have won.”
“Well, we can’t, but you deserve it more, anyway,” Arthur responded. He extended his hand. “Friends?”
“You got it, Arthur,” Justin answered, clasping Arthur’s hand.
Announcement: For fans of the series, Power Rangers: Infinite Velocity is going to be cancelled. I hope it to be only short termed, until I can end this series and a couple of others, but I don’t know for sure at the moment. But it will be back eventually, with new stories, an awesome new original sixth Ranger, and some new allies.
While on the subject, it will be a long while before the next Power Rangers: Virtuosity fanfic, for the same reason Infinite Velocity is being cancelled. But, like Infinite Velocity, PR: Virtuosity will be back eventually, with a vengeance.
Also, this series has 18 more new chapters to go, but only 10 or 11 of those will be before the huge storyline I’ve got planned for the big finale.