Disclaimer: We all know I don't own Power Rangers. If I did things would be a lot different from the current situations. Try to sue me but the most valuable thing I own is my five year old stereo system. Anything not recognizable is probably mine, but it could also just be pop culture infiltrating my barriers.
Author's notes: This one is VERY violent. There will be blood and gore represented as well as some rather creative use of four letter words. Please don't read this if you don't like this or if you're too young to cope with this. Oh, yeah it is about the length of a novel at this point, a complete accident (all my fics start out as ten-fifteen page ideas that seem to go into thirty or so… in this case sixty something) All hate mail goes to my e-mail
Another Time and Place
"How much further is it?" Rocky sighed as he glanced out the window seeing the same trees repeat themselves with hardly another car to break the monotony.
"I would guess about another half-hour at the most" Jason replied from the drivers' seat. He had to plead with his mom to get the van for the weekend and was not going to risk so much as a ticket while he was in it.
"Billy, toss the Doritos up here, Tommy called from the front passenger seat. He was relieved to be away from the duties demanded by Angel Grove. All the guys decided to go camping near the California/Nevada border. The girls had minimal interest in joining their male counterparts. Tanya even used the term "caveman" in her rejection.
Billy tossed the bag from the back seat, only to have it intercepted by Rocky who took two large handfuls and placed them in his lap before surrendering the remains to Tommy.
"Hey, I asked first for a reason." Tommy joked.
"So, how is life on the outside Billy?" Jason said.
"What?" Billy replied.
"You know, being cooped up in the Power Chamber." Jason explained, "You've barely seen the light of day lately."
"It is quite refreshing to escape the confines," Billy admitted, "But it really doesn't affect me one way or the other."
"I don't know how you and Adam do it." Tommy interjected "I couldn't deal with being by myself all the time. Don't you get depressed?"
Rocky quickly glanced backward toward Billy and noticed Adam completely knocked out beside him. He had curled himself into a ball to avoid crowding Billy on the back seat. His head rested on one arm while the other hung over the seat to the floor. "Speaking of Adam, check him out. Hey, sleeping Beauty, time to wake up." he said, shaking him slightly, only producing a faint moan.
Tommy looked back as well, "He's exhausted."
"Rocky, don't wake him up." Billy pleaded, "His parents have been arguing lately and he told me this morning that he's been sleep deprived."
"How come he didn't tell the rest of us?" Tommy asked.
"He doesn't want everybody to know his personal life." Rocky explained, "It's been like this for years. I'm surprised he spoke up at all."
The group remained silent for a moment with the exception of Rocky munching on his chips and the hum of the engine. It was awkward as they hardly looked at one another as the final destination became closer and home further and further.
"What am I doing here?" Billy muttered quietly.
"Hmm?" The others added.
"I don't belong here. I only came because you guys pestered me into doing it."
"Of course you belong here." Tommy added. "We need lives outside of Ranger duties."
"But I'm not a ranger anymore." Billy sighed. "I'm merely the lost cause in the closet."
Jason noted the tone of resentment in Billy's voice and initially vowed to say nothing. Still, he knew the matter wouldn't blow over easily. "Hardly. Yeah, you got cheated with the Gold Powers. Still, without you we would've all been dead a thousand times over before Tommy even became a ranger."
"That's right." Rocky agreed, "You're still a ranger. We all are and will be long after we leave."
The others snickered at the serious tone Rocky had taken. It was such a rare feat for him to concentrate on anything in particular. "You sounded almost philosophical" Tommy joked.
Billy shook his head in a manner that would have indicated disbelief. "It's not like I can hold my own on the battlefield. Physical combat was never my specialty. If I had inherited the Gold Power, I would have jeopardized all of you."
"Billy, you're being ridiculous." Tommy exclaimed, "You were the first choice for a reason. Thing just didn't work out. Stop being so insecure about yourself. You would've done fine. Your worst flaw is you never give yourself credit."
Billy wanted to protest further but merely took to staring out the window, hoping that once he got to the camp grounds there would be enough room for him to avoid another conversation of this manner. Nobody knew him well enough to tell the truth. They wanted to be kind and not offend him like he had been for so many years. It was easier to retreat than to continue the debate. The others noted that and figured it was best not to push matters further. The silence continued for twenty more minutes until the 'green monster' pulled up to the sparse wooded area they were to set up camp.
"Hey, Dad, Take a look at the rangers." Sprocket insisted as he spied on the conversation in the vehicle.
"Must I have any interest in what those petty humans are doing?" Mondo replied, "Unless they've been dismantled I don't want to bother with them.
"But this could be good." Sprocket continued, "Billy is doubting his ability as a ranger."
"What else is new?" Mondo said scornfully, turning his attention to a cog that had lost his left leg in battle with the rangers and cautiously replaced it.
"That gives me an idea." Sprocket exclaimed as he watched his father reattach the machine's limb. "We could capture the rangers and use one of them to tear them apart."
"What a horrid idea my son." Mondo dismissed, "It would take much effort to capture them and detain them. Remember what I said that you should never bring your enemy home with you."
"But Dad…" Sprocket urged, "If we could just get them for a few minutes we could place one of them under a spell. We could lock them up and let him take the other rangers out in front of us. They won't be able to fight back against their friend so it wouldn't be so easy for them to escape."
"Still, it is risky. How do we get all of them together and what will we do with their bodies or the one that's left. I don' particularly want a human bothering me, even if he is on our side." Mondo contemplated.
"Hmm…" Sprocket thought, "I know, We only need the male rangers and their all together now along with Billy. The girls will be vulnerable without them and we should have no problem in destroying them. As far as what to do with the humans we could get rid of them once their beaten up badly enough and send them back to Earth so their families could watch them die. The one left would have such a guilty conscience that he would be permanently incapacitated."
"It could work." Mondo considered. "But who would we use for the spell. It would need to be one who's emotionally weakened so once the spell is released they will break down."
"Well, Tommy wouldn't be a good idea; he might just get up again to get back at us. Same thing with Jason, especially if we kill one of his buddies. Rocky might just be too dumb to get what he did and wouldn't suffer as much. Either way, I'd like to see that goofball die."
"So you're suggesting between Adam or Billy." Mondo said.
"Yes, they both are similar in that they lack self confidence and I'm sure either one would fall apart once they realize that they murdered their fellow rangers. Still, Billy is slightly resentful that he doesn't have powers any more. He does have a hidden resentment toward Tommy and would be a perfect tool. He's also bigger than Adam and given the proper training could inflict more permanent damage."
"So be it. You have my approval." Mondo accepted, "But you must not fail. The last thing we need is for five rangers loose in my palace causing chaos. It is entirely up to you to carry it out. You have complete use of the cogs and any battle machine you wish. I just want those pesky humans out of my planet for good."
"No problem Pops." Sprocket confirmed, "I'll be sure Zordon's rangers will be no more."
"It's about time." Rocky exclaimed as he jumped out of the van "I thought we were never gonna get here."
"It's good to be able to stretch out my legs again" Tommy confirmed.
Billy gently shook Adam who was still sound asleep in the back seat. "Come on, were here Adam. Time to wake up."
Adam groaned slightly and then seemed to return back to sleep. Jason came around to the storage area behind them and made his attempt. "Adam….. Adam. Come on. Are you feeling alright?"
"Hmm… I'm fine…. just tired." Adam muttered.
"We need help setting up camp. Come on, the fresh air will do you good." Billy urged.
Adam grudgingly sat up, rubbing his eyes as they adjusted to the light. He wanted to sleep a few hours more but managed to pull himself up and came out the van.
"Look who's awake." Tommy smirked as he began sorting out several poles to one of the tents he had sprawled out in front of him. "Could you give me a hand with these?"
"Sure." Adam said, now being about half-awake.
"It's pretty nice here." Rocky commented, "Still I'm not sure if it was worth the five hour trip."
"Hey," Jason defended, "It gets us away from Angel Grove. We haven't been able to get away for awhile."
"I just hope Mondo will let us have this little vacation time." Rocky replied "I don't want to have to teleport back to deal with some monster." He was immediately given four looks that clearly meant 'Don't jinx us you idiot'. "What?"
"Common sense." Tommy explained, "Every time we wish these guys will leave us alone they are sure to cause trouble. We don't need any of that right now."
"We're going to need firewood." Jason stated, "Who wants to go?"
"I'll go." Billy offered.
"I guess I'll go too." Adam added, "I'm no good at setting up these stupid tents."
"Alright. Have fun." Rocky yelled as the two walked off together into the woods. "If you guys aren't back in two days, we'll get the FBI looking for you."
Both Billy and Adam headed cautiously along the path in the woods, picking up a variety of dry sticks. The trees stood surprisingly tall in the dry sandy soil and shielded them from the majority of the midday summer heat. "It'll take some time to gather the quantity needed for the fire" Billy said.
"It's still better than trying to set up the tents though." Adam replied.
"I suppose." Billy agreed.
Neither of the boys saw nor heard the swarm of cogs that were gathering about a hundred feet further up the trail. They hid just around a curve and waited for their pray to come to them. There were nearly forty all together along with a tall, skinny machine behind them. "Now listen up gear for brains. I'm going to give the order to attack. Once I do I want you to take out the green ranger. Leave the brainy pest to me. Once the others come, rough them up a bit and capture them, but no serious injuries. Gasket wants that pleasure."
The cogs nodded in unison as the two teens came closer and closer to the target area. "Wait…. Wait…." the leader machine said until they were within twenty feet "Now… go attack them!"
"What the hell?" Adam said as the team of cogs made a rush for him.
"How many of them are there?" Billy questioned.
"Too many." Adam answered, "Get out of here, get the others!"
Billy instinctively reached for his communicator and received nothing but static. "Shit… I can't reach Zordon or the others. The frequency is being blocked by something."
"Forget about that! Get the hell out of here." Adam yelled again. He backed up further, coming ever closer to a drop of about ten feet just beyond the trail.
"No way. You can't handle them on your own!" Billy cried out.
Three cogs made their first attempt at attacking Adam, who was unable to deflect all the blows. A decisive kick to the chest sent him tumbling over the edge of the drop and he fell hard on his left leg.
"Adam!" Billy called out, wondering why they weren't attacking him at all or showing any notice to his presence.
"Ahh…" Adam cried out as he attempted to stand. "I think I just broke my leg. Go get the others, please!"
The cogs were quickly making their way down toward the fallen Asian boy who frantically attempted to morph to no avail. "Damn it. I can't morph."
Billy quickly noticed the seriousness of his friend's injuries as he saw him frantically scramble away from the approaching enemy, lashing his right leg out wildly in his attempt to send them back. He considered going in to help but quickly realized that it was like a death sentence for them both if he did. He quickly turned away to run but was almost immediately intercepted by the head machine monster. "Going somewhere?"
"Get away from here!" Billy demanded vainly.
"Oh, you must be naïve to think that I would listen to a petty human." the monster cooed, "You don't know who I am. I am Dranscla and I am feared across most of the galaxy. If you don't struggle I won't hurt you and you shall live, for now."
"I'm not afraid." Billy whispered to himself as he took a fighting stance.
"You should be." Dranscla returned as he tackled Billy and before he could put up a fight was securely restrained and dragged over to the drop where Adam was losing badly to the Cogs. Billy was forced to watch as he saw his friend get kicked and punched numerous times and unable to connect a proper blow. Blood dripped down his forehead as he grew visibly exhausted. One final kick to the head sent him out, and he laid on the ground, unmoving.
"No! Get up!" Billy pleaded as he once again attempted to struggle against Dranscla's iron grip.
Dranscla chuckled at Billy's frantic attempt to save his friend, "Such sentimentalism is making me sick. Don't worry. HE isn't dead. You'll see him soon enough." And the two disappeared in a flash of blood red light.
A faint rumble could be heard from the camp ground and swarms of birds fled from deep in the woods. It was almost immediately followed by an explosion.
"What's that?" Jason asked aloud.
"I don't know, but it doesn't sound good." Tommy said. "We better go check it out."
"Right." Rocky and Jason agreed in unison.
The three took off racing down the path, as fast as their legs could carry them. They continued to hear the chaotic noises as the got nearer until they came face to face with more cogs than had ever been set out on them before. They completely surrounded them with ease, giving no hope of retreat.
"Time to take care of business." Tommy grunted as he sidekicked three of the cogs, only to have them replaced by several more.
"Shit, there's Too many of them!" Jason cried as he was kicked. Another cog quickly added another blow, sending him flying down the same drop. The wind was knocked out of him as he rolled an the ground in pain. When he came to his senses, he noticed the cogs once again approaching him while Tommy and Rocky were being quickly overpowered like never before. He stumbled backward and tripped over something, sending him tumbling toward the ground. He quickly recognized the boy in Green "Adam?" he said, shaking him without response.
The cogs kept approaching him gradually, taking their sweet time as though they knew they had the upper hand. "Come on, Adam? You gotta wake up!" He pleaded. A sudden fear struck him and he frantically Adam's neck for a pulse of some sort. He was relieved to find that his companion wasn't dead but then realized that Billy was nowhere to be found.
"Ahhh… it hurts." Rocky gasped as clutched his right shoulder that had been torn from its socket. "These guys are for real this time."
"I know." Tommy agreed, blood trickling from several wounds throughout his body, "There isn't much we can do. They must've managed to block out the communicators. We're royally fucked."
"I… Don't think I'm going to be able…. to keep this up much longer." Rocky said, between labored breaths.
"We CANNOT give up!" Tommy retorted. A cog came up behind him and delivered a strong kick to the base of Tommy's spine, sending him crashing down in a heap of pain.
"Tommy!" Rocky cried out. He looked around the chaos and noticed he was the only one left standing. Tommy laid barely conscious just in front of him, unable to put up the fight any longer. He saw Jason being dragged limply by two cogs who laid him next to Adam. The only one who wasn't present was Billy. Rocky hoped he had managed to get away, even though he doubted it. He felt his body grow tired, refusing to listen to his orders to continue with the fight. He felt the cold metallic hands grasp him and he was unable to do anything about it.
"So? Is the guest comfortable?" Sprocket taunted as he stood over Billy, who was restrained by his wrists and ankles onto a steel table. A slew of machinery, mainly consisting of old parts from destroyed monsters and cogs along with some leftovers from Rita and Zedd.
Billy wanted to cry. It was his own fault for him being here. He had to stand there and watch Adam get pummeled. If he had just run right away they all would have had a better chance. "I would hardly consider myself a guest here."
"Oh, but you are going to play the primary role in disposing of the rangers." Sprocket countered, "and you don't even have to thank me."
"Not in this lifetime." Billy replied, attempting to hide the fear and uncertainty he held.
"It's not like you have a choice." Sprocket explained, bringing out a huge syringe filled with a deep red fluid that nearly matched blood. "Once I give you this, the bio-agents will render you a mere puppet to us. I want you to kill your friends and you will. Don't try to fight it; it'll only weaken you against your task."
"No!" Billy shouted again and again as Sprocket injected the fluid into his arm. Almost immediately his head swam and he couldn't focus on anything. "Please don't make me do this!" he pleaded with tears in his eyes as he noticed the lack of control he had over his own body as he drifted off into a deep sleep."
"Soon, Billy it will all make sense. Just enjoy the ride." Sprocket chuckled.
"Hey girl, what's up?" Tanya said to Kat as she greeted her at the youth center.
"Oh, nothing. I'm just bored." Kat answered.
"Tell me about it." Tanya said in a slightly hushed voice, "We haven't been bothered by the machines for a few weeks. And we don't even have the guys to mess with."
Kat greeted her with a mischievous grin "Or a particular one." she taunted.
"Who?" Tanya defended, "Me and Adam?"
"Who else?" Kat replied, "It's pretty obvious."
"It's not like that" Tanya spelled out, "I wish it were but Adam said that he didn't feel for me quite like that. He's afraid that if we started going out things would get weird between the two of us on the battlefield."
"It isn't like that with Tommy and me at all." Katherine countered.
"I know, but maybe he isn't ready yet. I don't want to push it, besides, it's kinda nice being single again."
Kat nodded in reply. "Yeah, I miss them, but it's nice to get them out of our hair for a few days. We should hang out tonight and rent a bunch of movies. There're a ton that I want to see but Tommy won't because they are 'chick flicks' according to him."
"Hopefully things are going alright for them." Tanya thought aloud, "And I hope you-know-who won't cause any shit."
"Don't worry. They can take care of themselves. Besides, if something were to happen in that matter we would know." Kat ensured, gesturing to the communicator on her wrist.
"Where the hell are we?" Tommy said as he came to in a dark room where he and the other guys were hanging about a foot or so off the floor by a heavy rope tied around each of their hands.
"Beats me." Rocky responded.
"Is everybody alright?" Tommy asked.
"I don't know." Rocky answered truthfully. "Neither Adam or Jase have woken up yet. They did get pretty beat up back there. No clue as to where Billy is right now. How's your back?"
"Fucking sore as hell right now." Tommy grumbled.
"My arms hurt." Adam said quite groggily as he collected his senses.
"That's 'cause they have us hanging up here like wild game." Rocky replied. "You okay? You got your ass kicked back there."
"I know." Adam replied. "What do they want with us?"
"Wish we knew." Tommy replied. "We don't even know where we are or what time it is right now."
Jason had gradually began coming to and didn't bother saying a word. He knew that nobody had any answers to his questions.
"You think the girls are alright?" Tommy thought aloud.
"I hope so." Adam stated, "Seems like they were concentrating on us for the moment. I think they deployed every single cog they had on us. Anybody know where Billy is?"
"Beats me." Tommy replied, "I would've thought you would know since you were there. He was gone when we got there and you were out."
"He must've disappeared after I blacked out. Funny thing is none of them actually went to attack him at all. They were all busy taking me out. I just hope the fact he isn't here means he got away."
"We really need to be thinking about how we're going to get out of here." Rocky noted, looking around the small cell. "I personally don't want to know what they want to do with us here."
"Great, so what's you plan, Rocky?" Jason cracked, "Bite through these ropes? Oh, I got it… maybe if we ask really nicely they might let us go!"
"We really don't need sarcasm right now bro." Tommy urged, attempting to reduce the chance of a heated argument. "I don't see any way out of here at the moment. They got us tied up pretty good."
Adam attempted to get one of his arms out of the roping. His didn't seem as tight as the others' were and he was quite flexible "I might be able to get my wrist out of here if I can just get it through this loop."
"You sure?" Rocky exclaimed, "We don't need you breaking your arm trying to get out."
"Not like I can help much if they attack anyway." Adam scoffed, "In that cog attack I fell and I think one of my legs are broke. Might as well have an arm to match."
"It won't be so fun when you're in a wheelchair 'cause you won't be able to use the crutches." Tommy joked.
"It's not like we have any other options." Jason added, "If he wants to try let him. Things can't get much worse than it is right now."
"No…. I said to follow through like this!" Sprocket yelled as he took the sword from Billy and thrust it through the stuffed mannequin, the blade exiting through the other end. "You'll inflict more pain and damage that way, especially when you take it out."
"Yes master." Billy replied soullessly "I shall not disappoint you again. I will make sure the rangers will feel every bit of pain I give them."
"Yes, just remember, there's a force field around them that will keep them alive as long as you don't do anything too extreme like decapitate them. WE want them to go home and let them die where their friends and families will witness their very painful deaths."
"Yes, my Prince, I shall obey your command." Billy droned as he once again took the sword and in a quick flurry of decisive swipes reduced the mannequin to pieces, with cotton stuffing flying out everywhere. "Will that do?"
"Yes!" Sprocket cheered, "You're ready. Time for me to introduce you to your targets."
"I would very much like that." Billy grinned.
Sprocket took the sword from Billy's hand and replaced it with a long, thick bull whip. "Here, this is one of the most painful items to use on human flesh. It would make a good start. Make sure they won't be able to fight after this, especially Tommy."
"Tommy will feel all the pain for what he has done over these years." Billy agreed, "That glamor hog will be the first one to feel my hand around his throat and cry as he starts to die."
"Yes." Adam whispered.
"What?" Jason replied.
Adam wriggled his right hand to demonstrate what he had done.
"You son of a bitch." Tommy exclaimed, "You actually managed to get your hand out of there."
"At least that's something." Rocky replied "If I hang here for another five minutes, I think my arms will fall off."
All four of the guys heard footsteps approaching just then. They sounded heavy, like they belonged to one of the machines. As the figure came closer they could tell that it was human after all.
"Billy!" Tommy gasped, "What're you doing here we thought…."
"YOU thought I was captured, that I couldn't take care of myself." Billy interrupted, brandishing the whip and swinging it within inches of Tommy's face. "You were so wrong. Now you can't control me. I've been set free. Now its time for all of you to get what you deserve."
"What… are you doing?" Rocky stammered, his eyes focusing on the whip that seemed to be dangerously close and in the wrong person's hands.
"Duh… what does it look like you fucking moron?" Billy screamed, taking the object and demonstrating its use on the blue ranger's abdomen. Rocky yelped in agony as blood began to flow onto his shirt. "That's what a bullwhip is made for."
"Rocky?" Adam cried out. "Are you okay?"
"And look at you" Billy sneered, "I should've told them to be careful of you. Too damn agile for your own good, perhaps even too smart. To say the least you know more than these dumbasses combined!"
"No, you don't want to do this. This isn't you!" Adam protested and was greeted with a whiplash to his chest, but he withheld any sound."
"I'm going to teach you to try to get out of things when your not told." Billy continued, taking out a small dagger from his belt. "I said I wouldn't resort to knives just yet, but since you wouldn't scream for me and was trying to get away…"
"Please don't do it." Adam whimpered as the small dagger came ever closer to to his arm, not sure of what the enraged former ranger would do.
Billy firmly grasped Adam's arm, which struggled frantically as the knife dug into his flesh just above the elbow and traced a line down along the bone until he reached the wrist. He smiled with pure glee as he saw the tears begin to pour not only from Adam's eyes but the others' as well. "Such sentiment you have for one another. It's sickening. I haven't even begun hurting any of you yet."
"Knock this shit off right fucking now!" Jason screamed, deliberately attempting to get his attention away from his badly wounded partner, "You don't want to kill any of us. Stop being a puppet for them!"
"A puppet?" Billy crooned as he turned his attention on the muscular brunette, "Wasn't I that when I was with you? A machine who merely saved the day so you and Tommy could take all the glory?"
"You're gonna hate yourself after this is through." Jason blurted, "Knowing that you killed your friends."
"I shall only cry out of boredom once you're gone and in the dirt." Billy returned.
"Fuck you! Isn't one of us enough?" Jason yelled, looking over at Adam who continued to bleed extensively and seemed almost delirious.
"Don't worry, he won't die, just yet." Billy explained, "We want you to live through the worst attack and then you'll have the pleasure of dying in a hospital on Earth with your parents by your side. At least you'll be granted that honor."
"I hate you!" Jason screamed, prompting Billy to lash the whip several times over Jason's body. Jason also bit back his screams, determined not to grant Billy the pleasure of watching him in agony. When no reaction came Billy continued to whip, faster and harder, not sparing a single region; arms, legs, body and face were all drenched in thick red blood."
"No!" Tommy choked out. "Leave them alone."
Billy then advanced on Tommy once again a look of twisted contempt drawn on his face. His face had traces of blood as well, but obviously not his own. "Trying to be the hero once again? It's too late!"
"Come on, Billy. Try to remember that we aren't your enemy." Tommy pleaded, "We're not the ones you want to go after."
"Listen pretty boy, I'm tired of you influencing me to do what you say. Never again will I stand in your shadow. Nor will I lose what is entitled to me to your best friend. It's over and you cannot stop me." Billy said, dangerously calm examining Tommy's vulnerable body. "Where do I begin with you? I could always start with that face of yours." Billy took the whip and slashed it harder and faster than he had previously directly onto Tommy's left cheek. He lifted it again and marked his forehead in blood. Another time he let it fall directly onto his groin, the last bringing about the only cry of pain he would permit himself.
"That is enough for today." Billy determined, taking his knife and cutting the four battered rangers down from the ceiling. "But don't worry, I'll be back tomorrow to give you all another lesson." And as casually as he came, he left back down the corridor, the energy bars separating the components reappeared. Each of the four boys fought back the urge to cry openly not only because of the pain but also the dreadful idea of who was doing this to them and the fact they may never see their loved ones again.
Rocky was the least injured of the bunch and looked over each of the three others who laid on the ground barely able to move. "God. Guys, just hang in there. We'll find a way out."
"I know we will." Adam croaked very weakly. The bleeding was beginning to slow, which Rocky wasn't sure if it was good or bad. He scrambled to his friend of eleven years and looked into his wound. The bone was visible at places in the cut and not much less deep anywhere else.
"Please, hang in there. Just a little longer." Rocky pleaded.
"Don't worry, I'll be alright." Adam said shakily, holding Rocky's hand with his un-mangled hand which trembled greatly, "We'll make it through this. Then we'll laugh about it later. "
"How can you joke at a time like this?" Rocky said, dismayed. He suddenly realized that it was all his friend could do to keep awake; it was the only thing he had to hold onto. He realized that if he didn't play into it, it was very likely Adam could die in front of him. "Yeah, you'll be fine. You'll probably have a really nasty scar, but maybe the chicks will like it."
Adam chuckled slightly as his eyes began to close. Rocky panicked for a moment, "No, stay awake, whatever you do stay awake." But his words were lost as the smaller Asian boy fell into a deep sleep.
"He went out already?" Jason gasped, clutching his own wounds as best he could to stop the bleeding.
"Yeah." Rocky said, removing his shirt and tying it tightly around Adam's arm, placing his head on his lap. "He probably isn't gonna wake up."
"Didn't Billy say something about we won't die in here though?" Tommy asked.
"We're fucked either way." Jason moaned.
"Don't talk like that!" Tommy exclaimed, "We have to stick together. That's what they want. If we don't we're going to be dead no matter what happens. Once the girls find us they'll get us out of here."
"Is it worth it though?" Jason demanded, "If we're completely crippled. I don't want my folks to see me like that!"
"It's better than being here." Rocky replied. "Don't give up on yourself just yet. We'll make it through this somehow."
"Yeah, bro. Let's just hope that they're right about us not dying in here. At least it'll buy us some time."
"I'm just going to sleep. At least I won't have to think about anything." Jason muttered.
"I'm kinda exhausted too." Rocky agreed. "We need to try to rest."
"We'll figure out what to do tomorrow." Tommy added.
"Goodnight." they all said in near unison.
"Didn't they say they were going to be home by five?" Kat asked Mrs. Oliver about her son's whereabouts.
"That's what I was told but you know Tommy about as well as I do." Virginia Oliver answered, "They probably got caught up doing something out there and are running a couple hours late."
"Still, it's almost eight now. He would've called, or at least Adam or Billy would've. None of their parents have heard a word from them."
"Don't worry dear. I'll have him call you once he gets in. I'm sure they're all just fine."
"Yeah, you're probably right." Kat said with a great deal of uncertainty. "Bye."
"So, no word from any of them?" Tanya said, having overheard the conversation.
Kat put the phone down and looked over to her best friend. "Funny thing is they haven't called at all. Tommy and Rocky I understand, but the others…"
Tanya put a comforting arm around the tall blonde's shoulder. "We can't do anything. If something machine related happened, we would've been called by Zordon. They might've had the van break down on them or something."
"I just don't like the feeling of this." Kat returned.
Beep-beep beep-beep-beep beep went the girls' communicators as they waited in Kat's living room. "Hey, Zordon, what's up?" Tanya replied.
"Tanya I need you and Katherine here immediately" Zordon's voice boomed, "We have a dilemma at hand involving the other rangers and Billy."
Both of their hearts skipped a beat as they heard the urgency of the message. "We'll be right there."
"Zordon, what's going on?" Kat exclaimed as she and Tanya teleported into the Power Chamber. "Did something happen to the guys out there?"
"Unfortunately" the floating head boomed, "All of the male rangers and Billy were kidnapped my King Mondo's forces shortly after their arrival."
"What the fuck?" Tanya blurted, "Why didn't they call us? Why didn't you tell us they were under attack?"
"I apologize but a solar flare disrupted communication between us and you over the past two days. We had no means of informing you that any of this was happening."
"Are they alright? Have you found them?" Tanya insisted.
"We believe that they are being held captive on the machine empire's moon base. We've managed to pick up life signals but I'm afraid two of them are significantly weakened." Alpha explained.
"Who?" Kat asked.
"We are unable to depict who owns which life signal. The only indicator that it is them is that no other living beings are on the base at this moment. I fear that the Rangers are in grave danger."
"Then if you found them can't you teleport them back?" Kat asked once more.
"I'm sorry rangers, but we're still trying to override the protective shield that is preventing them from teleporting out."
Tanya went over to one of the computer consoles and began typing into the equipment as quickly as possible. "We gotta find them now!"
"Anybody else awake?" Tommy called out as he awoke, his face still sore as could be.
"Yeah." Jason groaned. He had weakened over the night visibly as he was sweating profusely.
"You okay bro?" Tommy asked.
"No." Jason admitted, "My whole body hurts and I think I'm getting sick."
Tommy crept over toward him and placed a palm over his forehead. It was warm… too warm. He also heard Jason wheeze slightly with every breath. "You're burning up man. Just take it easy."
"How're Rocky and Adam doing?" Jason inquired.
Tommy glanced over toward the two of them, still laying side by side like they were when he went to sleep. "They're still sound asleep I think."
"We should go check on them." Jason stated and followed with a deep hacking cough that burned his chest and throat.
"You should stay here bro." Tommy urged. "You and Adam got it the worst. I'll go check on them." He went over the couple feet to where both boys laid. Tommy secretly knew Rocky would be fine considering he had only one whip lash administered. He was half-expecting to find that Adam died in his sleep but he still was breathing. He also seemed to have the same wheezing Jason had and a hand to his forehead confirmed that he too was running a very high fever. He cautiously removed the shirt that was tied around his wound. -It's getting infected, really badly- he thought as he saw the white/yellow pus forming in the crevice and the deep discoloration. He then rewrapped the injury and left him to sleep, heading back toward Jason.
"Are they still alive?" Jason asked, wanting it to be a joke but knowing that there was a seriousness and reality to it.
"Yeah." Tommy confirmed. "Rocky seems fine. I think he's been taking care of Adam as best he can. I'm surprised that he even made it through last night. He got whatever you have. Must be 'cause you two got beaten the worst by him."
"Yeah," Jason said, his voice quivering, "sorry about last night. I know I haven't been very pleasant through all this but… it's just… I don't wanna die up here. Not like this.
"I hear you but we have to tough it out." Tommy responded, "None of us are in our prime right now."
"Honestly you look like shit." Jason blurted.
"Yeah," Tommy sighed, "I don't think I ever wanna see myself in a mirror anytime soon. You don't look so hot yourself."
"neither of you were ever were that attractive to me." Rocky interjected.
"Hey," Tommy called, "How you doing?"
"Sore, but a lot better than you guys look." Rocky confessed.
"Did you see Adam's arm yet?" Tommy questioned.
"Yeah, I saw it a few hours ago, while you guys were still sleeping." Rocky replied, "It looks pretty bad."
"Don't be surprised if he goes." Tommy stated. "It looks like he could any minute."
"Hey," a voice whispered, "I'm not dead yet and don't plan on it anytime soon."
"Adam?" Tommy exclaimed in disbelief.
"Are you doing alright?" Jason inquired.
"I'm fine." Adam lied. He felt absolutely horrid at the moment but he knew that he was beaten badly and it didn't take a genius to figure out that he was the primary worry at the moment. "My arm is feeling better."
"Don't lie." Rocky demanded, "We saw." Adam began to sit up, only to be forced back down by Rocky. "You and Jason aren't gonna move. Don't wanna have to haul two dead corpses out of here. Do you understand?"
Adam just nodded his head slightly as he laid on his back staring at the ceiling. "What are we going to do about Billy? He'll be back eventually."
"What can we do?" Jason said bitterly, "We can't fight him. Even if we wanted to I don't think any of us are in that shape right now."
Everyone nodded in conferment. "We just have to hope that we can get out of here before something all of us will regret." Tommy said, looking at the hard metal floor. "I couldn't fight Billy. I never would want to. And it isn't him in there doing this."
"We'll get Mondo back for this!" Rocky swore.
"Then get him for me too." Adam replied softly.
"Don't start talking like that now!" Rocky exclaimed, "You'll get your chance once we get out of here."
Adam laughed slightly, which gradually turned into a painful coughing fit. Once he had finished he answered "I don't think I'm ever gonna fight again. Even if I live through this."
"What?" Tommy exclaimed, "Don't worry. I'm sure we can patch you up in no time. We'll all be back to normal eventually."
"Yeah," Jason added, "You made it this far."
"Thanks guys." Adam responded, "But let's face reality. My arm's shot. It doesn't hurt because I can't feel it. I'm ready to accept that it will probably take me out of commission permanently."
The other three only looked at him and realized how true his statement was. Who was to say any of them would ever be able to fight again after what was done and if Billy were to strike again it could very easily be the end of the Power Rangers. "We'll get him for you, don't worry about that." Rocky said.
"Any clue as to getting out of here?" Jason inquired.
"They're energy bars all over the exit. There's no way to get through them." Tommy noted after taking a quick glance around the barren cell.
"Not to mention we'd still have to get out of this place" Jason added, "I don't think any of us could make a run for it right now."
"You did well your first time out." Sprocket gave his approval to Billy, "But I want you to go after Tommy. He needs to see the life dripping out of him very slowly and painfully. And you barely touched Rocky, but you at least got his friend quite well. Today I want you to take the sword and make sure that he is defenseless for good. Don't worry about any of the others unless they try to jump in and stop you. They'll have their time."
"Sire, I doubt that they will allow me to strike just one of them." Billy rationed, "Wouldn't it be best if I took all of them out immediately to get things over with now? That way you won't risk losing them if the others come to rescue them."
"The others won't be able to get to them." Sprocket said with a laugh, "They know where they are but there's no way for them to teleport in or out of the cell. Just take your time. If you do too much at once they begin not to feel anything."
"As you wish, master." Came the reply from the tall blonde man with the cold blue eyes.
"Get anywhere?" Kat asked Tanya and Alpha, who worked through the night attempting to break the force field trapping the five male companions.
"No." Tanya replied, "I've been trying every command and code Billy and Adam have ever shown me. There doesn't seem to be a way to penetrate this thing."
"It might be wise to go home and get some rest." Zordon advised, "You won't be able to help them if you're exhausted."
"What about their parents?" Kat inquired, "They're getting worried since they haven't heard from any of them last night. The police have been called even."
"How do we tell them?" Tanya exclaimed "… Oh, hi just dropping by to say that alien machines picked up your sons and are holding them prisoner on the moon. Why? Oh.. I forgot to tell you they're power Rangers!"
"We have to tell them something, even if it does give their identities away." Kat countered. "We just have to make sure that they won't tell anybody else."
"How?" Tanya demanded, "In case you haven't noticed, the media has been trying to figure out who we are for years now. If it weren't for the change in rangers from time to time, we would've all been found out a long time ago. They still want to know and let's face it people can be bought."
"Zordon." Kat pleaded, "What are we going to do about this? They have the right to know, but Tanya has a point there. Should we give ourselves away?"
Zordon pondered this all for several moments before speaking once again, "This is a difficult situation. Upon becoming rangers you vowed not to reveal you identities, but never had a situation come up where there was a legitimate reason for breaking this vow. There is a risk involved in telling the families, but you are officially released from the vow of silence as of now. The two of you must decide for yourselves what is the best option and be prepared to accept what may occur as a result."
"So, what do you want to do?" Tanya asked Kat.
"I don't know," Kat admitted, "I think we should. At least there would be some type of relief. We know they're all alive."
"We could always try to swear them to secrecy but there wouldn't be any promises." Tanya grumbled, still fairly critical of doing something so drastic so quickly. There has to be another way of doing this.
"Well, what could be so bad if it did happen? I mean, yeah, we'll get bothered by the media for awhile but things would cool down eventually."
"I like having my privacy." Tanya argued, "I don't want anybody following me with every person I date. I don't want people to suddenly like me just because of this. I want to keep a normal like to a certain extent."
"Still, wouldn't your parents be scared half to death if it were you in that situation. Wouldn't you want them to know the fucking truth if it happened. I know I would like them to know that about me."
"I wouldn't put anybody else in the position to decide for me." Tanya yelled. "Just do what you want, but be careful about it. I still don't want the whole planet to know."
"Neither do I, but I think it's the right thing to do right now." Kat answered.
"What did you want all of us here for?" Mrs. DeSantos asked as she, Mr. And Mrs. Park, Mrs. Oliver, Mr and Ms. Scott and Mr. Cranston all met in the Hillard's living room.
"There's something you need to know. It's about Tommy, Adam, Billy, Rocky and Jason disappearing." Kat began, "Thing is… I know who kidnapped them. It's those machines that keep coming down to Earth and attacking Angel Grove. They took them once they got to the campground. They're being held captive on the moon, and there's no way to get them back. I knw they're all still alive, but I don't know anybody else."
"Why would they take them, though? There are so many kids they could've took." Mr. Cranston
"And how would you know about this?" Mr. Park demanded, "You seem to know more about this than the authorities do."
"Well, you see…" Kat continued, "except for Billy, they're all Power Rangers, and Billy was one until recently but still helps us out. Tanya and I are also."
"What?" Mrs. Scott asked, "You mean all this time…"
"We couldn't tell you… for obvious reasons." Kat explained. "And I am begging you all to keep this secret to yourselves. It would be a disaster for all of us if we ever got found out."
"Of all people, it had to be my son." Mrs. Oliver sighed, "That's why he disappeared all the time and got detentions for ditching class. All this time I thought he was doing drugs or something but could never prove it."
"It answers a lot of questions." Mrs. Park thought aloud, "Like where he was disappearing to all the time and wouldn't tell us anything. Are you sure though? I mean Adam hates to fight."
Kat wanted to say something in reply. None of them liked going into battles but they always did it since they were the only ones who could stop every monster that was sent down. "It's true."
"What are you going to do to get them back?" Mr. Scott asked firmly, "I don't want Tommy to be up there a second longer. Please get him back safely."
"We're trying, but it isn't easy." Kat replied.
"What time do you think it is?" Rocky asked. "How long have we been in here?"
"Beats me." Jason replied, "I bet we should've been home by now. Damn, our folks are going to be worried as hell about us."
"I don't want to know how long we've been stuck here. I would guess a couple days now." Adam gave his estimate. He once again went into a coughing fit that receded after a few seconds.
"I think I lost track of time once I came in here. It's had to of been at least a day and a half though." Tommy added.
"You're wrong Tommy," a sinister voice interrupted as the owner entered through the energy bars into the cell. "It's just time for you to die."
"Over our dead bodies!" Jason screamed in response.
"If it has to be so it shall. But I can easily dispose of all of you in your weakened condition. All I want is Tommy… this time around." Billy grimaced as he took several long strides over to Tommy, who attempted to scramble away. Within a second Billy had harshly gripped Tommy's long hair and gave it a hard yank.
"Knock this shit off!" Rocky screamed as he leaped and tackled Billy to the ground. The two young men wrestled for a minute until a sharp object pierced Rocky's abdomen, and then he was kicked forcefully in the chest, sending him down in a heap of flesh and blood.
"Don't toy with me, Rocky, I have three times the intellect and twice your strength right now." Billy sneered as he twisted the sword in him, Rocky screaming like he never had before in pain. He then quickly removed the blade as he heard Jason attempting to sneak up on him. "You want to fight me?"
"You're not going to kil