Disclaimer: Power Rangers and all related characters are owned by Saban Entertainment/International, used without permission. I intend in no way to present this as an official representation of the afore-mentioned characters. I am not in any way paid for this; this is simply for myself and the reader's pleasure. All changes to the Ranger timeline are my idea.
Good Night, Dear Friend
By The Girl in the Red Jacket
By The Girl in the Red Jacket
Tommy lay in a pool of his own blood. He knew it was over, that no one would be able to help him now. His vision was dimming slowly and sounds seemed to come from far away. A familiar face appeared in his blurring line of vision, one he would hate to leave behind.
"Hold on, Tommy. I'm getting you out of here. You'll be okay." Jason's voice echoed into Tommy's conscious. He was slipping away from the world as quickly as the crimson pool was growing beneath him.
Jason's arms were around Tommy. Jason teleported them to the Command Centre where Zordon and Alpha were waiting. Jason had seen Tommy fall, the victim of one last random blast from Rita's wand, and rushed back to help him but Zordon feared it would be too late. Indeed when he saw how badly Tommy had been hurt he knew Tommy had little time left on the Earth.
"What do we do, Zordon? How can we help, Tommy?" Jason asked hastily looking from his friend's quickly paling face to the image of their mentor. Zordon was silent for a few seconds looking sadly at the two young men as close as brothers.
"THERE IS NOTHING WE CAN DO, JASON." Zordon said finally letting the harsh news out. "I AM SORRY, TOMMY."
Jason felt as if his soul had been ripped from his body. Zordon always knew what to do. There was always a way or an answer or a cure of some kind to be had.
"No! There has to be something we can do!" Jason yelled not wanting to believe it. "We can't just let Tommy die!" Zordon looked as though he was about to say something when a soft voice beat him to it.
"…Jason…it's okay…" Tommy rasped trying to speak. Every second that passed made it harder to breathe. The pain was excruciating and Tommy squeezed Jason's hand trying to fight it away.
"Tommy, we can't lose you. We need you." Jason said as he cradled Tommy's pain racked body in his arms.
"…you were the leader before…you can do it again…you don't need me…" Tommy whispered as the light in his eyes began to dim. "…don't worry about me…I'll be fine…"
"I won't let you die, Tommy. I can't do this without you." Jason felt tears begin to trickle down his cheeks. He did not feel ashamed of those tears, not now when his best friend was desperately clinging to life and losing the battle. Jason was remorseful of the fact he was powerless to help his best friend.
"…it's okay, Jase…we knew this was always a risk…I'm not afraid of death…I thought I would be but…but I'm not…" Tommy's voice was almost too soft to hear. He coughed violently, the crimson liquid sliding out from his mouth. Tommy's life was draining more with each drop of blood that fell from the gaping wound at his side and those injuries no one could see.
"…Jase…" Tommy whispered barely able to get the words out now. The searing pain was being replaced with a numbness that overtook Tommy's body. His senses were fading, and he could barely hold onto the last of his life. Tommy knew this was it. Jason leaned closer to hear Tommy's words.
"…keep up the fight, bro…" Tommy breathed.
Jason held Tommy close as his body shuddered and lay still. The chocolate brown eyes closed slowly and the soft exhale of breath was not accompanied by the inhale. The strong hand went limp as it slipped from Jason's and fell to the ground.
"Tommy! TOMMY!" Jason shouted letting grief his overtake him as he hugged the body of his best friend, his brother, close to him. But it was no use.
Tommy Oliver, friend, brother and leader of the Power Rangers left his friends behind as his soul left the Earth.
Jason was hysterical as he clutched Tommy's lifeless body unable to accept the fact Tommy was gone. Power Rangers didn't die, Zordon always managed to save them in time. This time, however, there was nothing that could have been done. The wound was too severe to be mended, the bleeding too much to be stopped.
"Let him go, Jason. You can't do anything. Tommy's gone. Let him go." Billy said as he pulled Jason away from Tommy's motionless form.
Jason couldn't properly comprehend what was going on. Zordon was speaking. To the group? To him? Jason wasn't sure. All he could do was stare at the body Tommy had left behind as tears slid down his face. Tommy's pale face seemed to be something out of a dream. Jason was desperate for Tommy to open his eyes and have it really be a dream. But it wasn't.
The funeral came and went quickly. Jason sat silently through the service completely listlessly. Even as a Pallbearer his movements were automatic. Jason may have been there physically but in every other way he seemed to have left as well.
Jason assumed the role of the leader after Tommy's death. It was the only time he seemed alive. Jason had stopped speaking now except while fighting as a Power Ranger. Blind hatred was what fueled him in those fights after Tommy's death. The savage look in Jason's eyes during those fights was like that of a wild animal caught in a cage. It scared the other Rangers as well as the monsters.
Zordon was worried, everyone was worried. Jason didn't speak except when fighting, he hardly ate and by the looks of things he had stopped sleeping too. The warm, friendly glow in Jason's eyes had gone out to be replaced by the hollow look of someone who had nothing to live for and during battle those eyes were beyond terrifying.
It was becoming too much for Jason to handle. The load he was carrying threatened to crush him. One night it got particularly bad. Nightmares of Tommy's death had been plaguing Jason since that dreadful day his world had been destroyed. When Jason woke up in a cold sweat for the third time that night he had reached the end of his rope. Tears mingled into the sweat on his face. The dreams were getting worse and worse and Jason was helpless to stop them. Whenever anything like this had happened before he had gone to Tommy, who knew what it was like to have such a huge responsibility placed on your back. Now Jason felt as if he was completely alone.
Jason got out of bed and pulled open a draw. His power coin lay there beside his father's gun. Jason had taken it the night Tommy had died and put it in his room. At the time Jason wasn't sure why he had done that, it was like he had known this would happen. His father hadn't noticed it was gone yet. Jason grabbed both items and climbed out his window.
It wasn't long before Jason was running. Where exactly he didn't know but he had to get away from there, from everywhere. Down his street, passed the juice bar, through the park until Jason fell onto the soft grass near the mountains that held the Command Centre. He was on a ledge that overlooked the whole town. Jason recognized the place as where he had once fond Tommy while he was losing the Green Ranger powers. Tommy had been so upset that day. The two had made a pact, brothers no matter what. Jason gulped as tears stung the back of his eyes.
Jason clutched his power coin in one hand and the gun in the other. The cold metal of the gun seemed to contrast sharply with the warmth the power coin radiated in the hand of its owner. Jason took a deep breath and tried to steady himself but it was so hard.
Jason lifted the gun and held it to his temple. Tears streamed down his face as he prepared to pull the trigger and end the torment once and for all.
"Don't do it, Jase." The wind seemed to whisper.
"Stop it! I don't want to deal with this any more!" Jason screamed into the black, starless night. "I just want it to stop! I can't live like this anymore. Please understand. I just want it to stop. I want to end it!" Jason sobbed. Jason closed his eyes ready to pull the trigger when a hand touched his shoulder.
Jason spun around quickly. His mouth opened in shock and the gun dropped from his hand as he sank to the ground completely stunned.
"What the hell do you think you're doing, Jason!?" Tommy asked. Tommy grabbed the gun off the ground and threw it out of Jason's reach but where he could still see it clearly.
"You…You're dead…" Jason whispered not believing what was happening.
"Yeah, I know I'm dead. Why in God's name were you planning to join me?" Tommy asked sitting beside Jason on the grass.
Jason could only stare at Tommy who was looking back at Jason. Jason realized Tommy wasn't solid but only tones and shades of his former self. It was like he was made from a very thick mist. Still, the caring eyes looked right into Jason's own and Jason knew this was no dream.
"Why, Jason?" Tommy asked softly.
"I can't do this, Tommy. I just can't." Jason whispered as a tear leaked down his cheeks.
"So you're giving up." Tommy observed looking at Jason sadly.
"It's too hard. It hurts too much to live." Jason replied quietly. "I don't want to feel the pain any more."
"This isn't the right way to deal with the pain, Jason. I've seen what you've been doing these last few weeks. Everyone is worried sick about you down here and I am too." Tommy told Jason. "The others need you to lead them now."
"I'm not strong enough. The pain won't go away. I can't sleep because of the nightmares. I can't eat or I'll throw up. Every time a monster attacks I see you falling in my mind. I can't get the image out of my mind." Jason couldn't stop the tears now. "I'm scared that someone else will be hurt and I won't be able to save them either."
"I know what you've been going through. I can watch over you from where I am." Tommy let his ghostly hand rest on Jason's shoulder. "Trying to kill yourself won't make it all go away. It will only make things worse if you go through with this, on everyone else. How can they deal with losing you too? And next time you try something like this I won't be able to stop you."
"How do I make it stop?" Jason whispered his eyes watering. Tommy wanted to cry himself for the pain his best friend was in right now.
"Go to Zordon or go to Billy or Kim or anyone. Tell them what's going on and let them help you. Don't shut yourself off to the world and let things get out of control. Talk to someone, you know Zordon will always listen and so will the others." Tommy told him. "It won't be easy but eventually the pain will go away."
Jason nodded slowly. He looked at Tommy and noticed at once that Tommy was fading slightly.
"Don't leave me again, Tommy. Please don't leave me." Jason said panicking at the thought of Tommy leaving him now.
"I'm not going anywhere until you're safe in the Command Centre. The others are already there." Tommy almost chuckled at the confused statement on Jason's face. "I can see more than one place at once now. It's kinda cool."
Tommy grew serious once more, "They are all worried about you, Jase. That's why they're there tonight. They're trying to think of a way to get you back to normal."
"I don't know if I can do it, Tommy." Jason whispered wishing he could leave with his friend to where there was nothing to worry about ever.
"I know you can. I'll be watching over you, Jase and I'll protect you as much as I can but you've got to help me with that." Tommy said. "Now get to the Command Centre. I know you don't want to admit it but you need them right now."
"I don't want to say good-bye to you, Tommy." Jason whispered.
"It's not good-bye forever it's more like…like good-night, I'll see you in the morning. Just because you can't see me doesn't mean I'm not still with you." Tommy replied softly. "But please don't resort to hurting yourself. It will only make things worse. Promise me you won't ever pick up a gun or do anything with the intention of ending your life." Tommy knew if Jason made the promise he would do everything to make sure he followed through with it.
Jason looked away for a second trying to hide his tears. Jason felt Tommy's ghostly arm around his shoulders as Jason drew in a shaky breath.
"I promise, Tommy. I won't let you down." Jason whispered in response as he looked at Tommy again. For a second their eyes meet then Jason teleported away with one last look at his best friend.
Tommy remained only a few more moments. He picked up the gun and with one wave of his hand made it disappear.
"The world doesn't need this gun. Not after what it could have taken away." Tommy whispered to himself before fading away in a soft breeze.
Jason arrived in the Command Centre much to the surprise of his friends and mentor. For a second no one spoke. Jason felt his legs tremble beneath him. The last weeks without much sleep or food were finally catching up to him. Jason felt lightheaded partly because of the physical strain but mostly because of everything else.
"I'm sorry, guys." Jason managed before he collapsed to the floor, unconscious. Billy jumped to his feet and caught Jason just before he hit the ground. Zack ran to get a cot and Billy gently lay Jason on it as Alpha scanned him.
"WHAT IS WRONG WITH JASON, ALPHA?" Zordon asked.
"Jason is exhausted, dehydrated and malnourished. The scanner shows he has not eaten in the last seventy two hours and it has caused his body to weaken considerably because of combination of that being dehydrated. The scanner is also picking up severe emotional stress." Alpha answered.
"He'll be all right, won't he?" Kim asked apprehensively. After Tommy's death nothing seemed safe or completely sure.
"Yes, he just needs to rest. We'll make sure he gets the nourishment he needs from an IV until he wakes up." Billy said quickly reading the scanner.
"Thank God for that." Trini whispered knowing it would be unbearable for the team to lose another member so soon after Tommy.
Jason woke up almost a full day later with tubes running into his arms and nose. He felt incredibly weak and slightly nauseous. Jason tried to sit up but a voice stopped him.
"I wouldn't try sitting up yet, Jason. Zordon doesn't want you to get up for a while. He wants you to get some rest." Billy told him from one said.
Jason turned his head to see Billy sitting in a chair a book resting on his lap. It looked as if he had been there for quite awhile.
"We've been taking shifts to stay with you." Billy said reading the confused look in Jason's eyes. "No one wanted to leave you alone after you collapsed yesterday."
"Thanks." Jason said rather hoarsely. His throat was sore and his head was aching but Jason, in some very strange way, felt better than yesterday.
"What happened yesterday before you got to the Command Centre?" Billy asked carefully. Everyone had been wondering since Jason had passed out in front of them. Jason closed his eyes briefly and stayed silent for a few seconds.
"Will you let me explain everything before you say anything?" Jason asked softly.
"Of course." Billy answered. Jason took a deep breath remembering what Tommy had said. Talking would help, even if it didn't seem like it at first.
"Last night, I tried to kill myself." Jason whispered. Billy gasped but didn't say anything like he had promised. "I've been having nightmares ever since Tommy died. Last night was really bad. I just couldn't deal with it any more…"
Jason was back in his room. His parents had wondered where he was the whole time. Billy and Zack had covered for him by saying he had been with them the whole time working on a project that they had neglected to do until the last minute. Jason's parents bought it. Jason didn't plan on telling them what had happened. He wasn't sure they would believe him.
The last day or so had been hard on Jason. He had told Zordon and the other Rangers everything. As draining as it had been and as fearful Jason had been of their reaction it felt as though a weight had been taken off Jason's shoulders. The others had been nothing but supported even though Jason falling apart like this had shocked them. They all knew that Jason and Tommy were like brothers, a closer bond than any of the Rangers had, except possibly what had been between Tommy and Kim, existed between them.
Jason gently ran his fingers over his communicator. Zordon had, at Jason's request to keep an eye on him just in case something else happened, gotten Alpha to attach a special sensor to it that monitored Jason's level of emotional stress. If anything got out of hand one of the other Rangers would come and check on him. Jason planned to even wear it when he was sleeping as Zordon would be able to tell if Jason was having one of the nightmares again. Jason didn't know how well he could deal with those nightmares.
A weak smile flickered across Jason's face as he looked out at the starry night. He knew Tommy was out there somewhere, even if Jason couldn't see him now.
"Good night, Tommy." Jason whispered before crawling into bed and falling asleep.
Jason would keep the ritual of saying those words all his life. When Trini, Zack and Jason left for the Peace Conference Jason left Billy in charge, a role he maintained until his team of Rangers retired. Zack was his roommate at the Peace Conference and understood what Jason was doing when he whispered those words every night. When Jason returned to Angelgrove he was given the Gold Ranger Powers. They were eventually taken away when they started to be rejected by Jason's body. Zordon, however, kept the communicator on Jason's wrist, just in case something happened. It would be years after Zordon's death that Jason took the communicator off at last. Even though it no longer worked Jason found the communicator comforting. He still kept in touch with the other ex-Rangers over the years. Especially Billy, they had formed a strong bond through not as strong as the one Jason and Tommy had shared.
Jason smiled now as he looked out the window of his second story room. So many years had gone by, Jason knew he was old now though it was a hard fact to accept.
"Are you all right, dad?" A voice asked from behind him. Jason turned to look at his full-grown son, now with children of his own. Jason had moved in with them a few years ago, after his wife had died of old age.
"Don't you worry about me. I'm fine." Jason replied smiling softly at his eldest.
"Saying good night?" His son asked smiling at his father's oldest ritual.
"Of course, I've never gone a life without saying good night to him." Jason replied seriously.
"Tell me about my namesake again?" Thomas Lee Scott asked softly. He had never tired off hearing his father talk of his best friend who had died when he was still a teenager. It was something Tommy had carried over from childhood, something that only he and his dad shared.
Jason smiled at his eldest son. Tommy Scott did indeed have a little bit of Tommy Oliver in him. He was a natural leader though not as serious as Tommy Oliver. Sometimes Jason almost saw his old friend in his son.
"Tommy was the bravest, kindest person you could ever meet. Not at first, of course." Jason smiled. Tommy grinned back at his father.
A few years ago Jason had felt it was time to tell Tommy about the Power Rangers to keep the legacy alive. Tommy hadn't really believed him until Jason had shown him the old power coin he still had. Now Tommy knew everything about the Power Rangers long after his father had been one. Tommy was one of the only people alive who knew the identities of the original Power Rangers as some of them had already passed on from old age. Zack had died a year earlier, Trini and Billy, who had gotten together and been married, died in a car crash just six months ago. Jason and Kim were the only ones left of the original team now.
"Tommy died trying to save the world." Jason said softly once again staring out the window. "He died too young but it was doing something great."
"I wish I could have met him." Tommy said softly. Jason smiled again.
"Perhaps one day, a long time from now, I'll be able to introduce him to you." Jason said looking out the window at the stars.
"Tommy! Come tuck the kids in!" Tommy's wife, in an odd coincidence named Kimberly, called from down the hall.
"Goodnight dad." Tommy said before kissing his father on the cheek.
"Goodnight son. Go see to those grandchildren of mine." Jason replied with a smile. As Tommy left, he saw his father turn back and lean on the side of the window staring out at the stars. Old habits die hard, Tommy thought to himself.
"Good night, dear friend. I have a feeling I'll be seeing you again soon." Jason whispered out to the starry night sky.
Later that night Jason Lee Scott died peacefully in his sleep after many years spent on the earth. Tommy Oliver was there to meet him at the gates, a wide smile on his face. Jason had kept his promise.