Legacy of Valor – an Always a Ranger Mini Series
Chapter 5 – Wrong Side of the Door
In a flash of light, similar to the last time they’d appeared in the future, the Dino Thunder team, minus Kim appeared in the command room of the auxiliary bunker; this time however they had been escorted there by Sky Tate, Commander of SDP, and accompanied by ten rangers, the A and B Squads. Once they arrived the team powered down and Tommy almost instantly started moving around anxiously, his arms were waving as he spoke, the actions punctuating his case.
“We need to get your people here suited up and go back and get them out of there,” swore Tommy, his eyes boring into Sky now that his armor was gone.
At the inferred threat on their commander the A and B Squads started to move to his aid before the Dino Thunder team moved to block them. Creating a gap between the SPD rangers and Tommy and Sky, Conner assessed the situation and moved quickly to his mentor’s side.
“Dr O., you need to calm down,” said Conner, knowing just how much this whole thing was scaring their former teacher; memories of Kim’s abduction by Zeltrax on their wedding day filling the red ranger’s mind.
Before Tommy could say anything else a door that they hadn’t been aware of opened and Syd, Bridge and Sam entered. Sky moved to greet them, his eyes going to Syd first with a look that said everything he couldn’t say while they were in their professional roles.
“The staff and civilians?” he asked quickly.
“The older cadets are escorting the civilians and staff to safety. The younger cadets will stay with the older ones. Once this is over we can call them,” Syd said simply, her mouth a set line even as her eyes caught and held Sky’s.
“Well the sooner we go back the sooner you can get your headquarters back. All your rangers are here… we need to go, now!” insisted Tommy as he started inching closer towards Sky, the move registering as aggressive with the SPD rangers who Trent, Ethan and Kira were still doing their best to keep the greater number of rangers at bay.
“Dr. Oliver, Tommy…” began Sky, the look in his eyes one of understanding as he looked away from his own wife who stood at his side. “I understand that you want to rescue your wife…”
“And daughter,” pointed out Tommy and Sky nodded; he wasn’t sure if Beth had made her identity known to them, but it was obvious now that she had.
“But the fact is that we were able to evacuate all the personnel due to your actions. And thanks to your wife and daughter, Trent and Ethan freed the command staff and the most of two active ranger teams. We have the resources now to rescue Kimberly and Beth… we just need time and a plan.”
“Time? You want me to just wait around while you figure out what to do and leave them there?” Tommy said incredulously, and moved into Sky’s personal space, finger pointing dangerously in the other man’s face.
“Dr. O…” interjected Kira, her head turning towards their team mate, mentor and friend as she asked a vital question in the hoping to defuse the situation, “is Kim in danger right now? Is she in pain? When we were escaping… was she calling for your help?”
“What?” Tommy asked, his head whipping around at the blond at the question.
There was a brief pause before Kira looked to Conner. He caught her gaze and suddenly knew what Kira was trying to do.
“When Mesagog had her, before… you remember, you could feel, her, you told us so…” Conner reminded him, his voice trailing off as he waited for Tommy to focus on what they were asking from him.
Trent and Ethan watched the expression on Tommy’s face change as his mind slid into the past. The hours following Kim’s kidnapping at the wedding, leading up to Anton’s death were still difficult subjects for many of them. But the fundamental thing that had come out of it was Tommy and Kim had found some kind of… mystical, soul connection that let them feel one another in some instances.
“Yeah, your brother’s guardian made you have to give up your secret identity so you could find her,” recalled Ethan.
“What happened out there today?” Bridge asked, confused as to what the Dino Thunder rangers were talking about, even though he’d been there for most of the discussion. How could Tommy know if Kim was hurt or in danger right now?
“I felt…” Tommy started, his mind having pushed aside the older memories as he concentrated on trying to describe the feeling he’d had in the stairwell.
“What?” asked Trent, pushing the black ranger to verbalize what he’d experienced.
“Like something… some *one* was pushing me to run,” he said finally, accepting the reality of what exactly he’d felt.
That gut feeling, the one that had urged him to hurry and get the people out of SPD HQ before the alarms went off… it *had* been Kim…
As the realization that she’d reached out to him like that, knowing that she couldn’t come to him and that if he’d known she and Beth were captured he would have turned around to rescue them, putting his charges in peril, he felt some of his anger dissipate. After all these years, she was still doing everything she could to cover his ass and take care of him…
“Kinda like how you knew Kim was in Mesagog’s fortress?” questioned Conner, remembering Dr. O describing it later to them.
Tommy nodded slightly, still overwhelmed by the realization that Kim had consciously used their connection.
“So that connection you have with Kim kicked in today,” hypothesized Ethan, “and it was her using it, maybe unconsciously, that directed you to get out of the SPD building.”
“I don’t think it was unconsciously,” Tommy said simply, his throat tightening as he fought to control his scattered emotions, “I think she knew I’d come back for her if…”
The room was silent once again as Tommy trailed off. If she’d called for help he would have abandoned his post, and if Kira or Conner had followed him to go back to get Kim and Beth… things could have ended up much worse. As the SPD rangers, Sky, Syd and Bridge watched Tommy’s reaction as well as those of the other Dino Thunder rangers, the tension in the room ratcheted down, understanding taking the place of apprehension and confusion.
To that end Sky Tate knew that he needed to logically engage the legendary power ranger and making him understand their opponent was one way to do that. Moving to Tommy he placed a hand lightly on the black ranger’s shoulder, the two men meeting eye to eye.
“Tommy, you need to focus on the facts; we know they’re alive, where they are who has them…” reminded Sky calmly, trying to redirect Tommy’s mind on the fact that Kim and Beth were safe and where they could be rescued.
“And who exactly is that?” asked Conner, who had missed that part, having been on the team that had liberated the cadets and staff rather than the command staff and rangers who knew their enemy.
“Trent and I saw their leader… some chick wearing a red and black uniform,” answered Ethan, recalling seeing the woman briefly when they’d run for it at Kim’s behest.
Sky frowned and then looked past the Dino Thunder team and towards Syd and Bridge. They had all be shocked when Morgana had stormed SPD HQ. He’d been sure that she’d been captured years ago, but she must have found some way to escape. And when she’d directed Broodwing and her other henchmen to search the containment card storage cell he’d expected that she was hunting for Emperor Gruumm…
So when he’d turned the corner with Ethan and Trent he’d been shocked to see the leader of the A Squad – Charlie Martinez.
One look at her and all the memories of when she and the original A Squad had returned and attempted to destroy SPD with their… treachery bubbled to the surface for Sky. The woman was no longer focused on joining forces with the current evil now…it was looking more and more like overthrowing the planet, like Gruumm had wanted was no longer on her agenda… but making SPD pay was. And she not only had her A Squad team but Morgana’s forces aiding her as well.
“She was one of us,” Sky finally said quietly, almost too silent for anyone not standing right next to him to hear.
“What?” Kira blurted out and then bit her lip to reign in any further outburst as she waited for Sky to explain.
When Sky didn’t say anything more, just cast his eyes to the floor, Syd moved to his side once more to offer him her unwavering support.
“She was a ranger… a member of SPD. Actually she was the first woman chosen to wear the red leader mantle,” Syd said as she moved to gently lay a hand on her husband’s cheek as his head rose to look her in the face, his mouth tugging up slightly in a barely there smile of thanks before she pulled her hand away.
“But…” started Ethan, confused now; how was this possible…
“There was… an incident, back in 2025…” started Bridge, moving to fill in the knowledge gaps for the Dino Thunder team that the SPD people didn’t have. “She and her whole team disappeared. And when they finally returned…”
“They’d changed loyalties,” stated Trent, a feeling of déjà vu hitting him in the chest hard as he immediately put the pieces together.
“Charlie and her ranger team were defeated and incarcerated in a containment card in the SPD HQ holding area… the room that you found us in,” continued Bridge, finishing his account after Trent had simplified the return of the A Squad and their traitorous alignment with Gruumm.
“Wait… those lit up boxes along the walls… those are the containment cards?” Ethan asked, suddenly thinking how there were shapes inside the brightly illuminated boxes that had lined the walls. He was suddenly aghast at the idea that there could be people and things held inside them…
“Yes…” stated Sky directly, not mincing words even as he knew the others probably were stunned by the idea of holding prisoners in that manner, which would be completely foreign to them.
“But Beth thought this was about Emperor Gruumm?” Tommy questioned suddenly, finally reengaging in the conversation.
“No… It seems not. I would have expected Gruumm to come and gloat, but he never did. I guess the attack was to rescue Charlie and her people, not Gruumm, and to take over SPD,” Sky stated, his mind still fighting to grasp the idea that one of their own had done all this because of her hatred of how SPD had treated her... “Charlie must have had an agreement of some kind with Morgana…”
“And Morgana finally made good after… fifteen years?” questioned Syd beside him, shock evident on her face.
“Morgana was placed in a containment card when we defeated Gruumm… it obviously took her a while to find a way to use her magic to escape,” Bridge offered, the logic of the puzzle kicking his brain into high gear.
“So now this traitorous former ranger has my wife and daughter… and obviously has a vendetta against SPD…” remarked Tommy a dark edge now lining his voice.
“It may be worse than that,” pointed out Bridge in his utterly gut-wrenching way as he attempted to be helpful, bringing all eyes to him.
“How could it be worse?” asked Conner, not sure exactly what the man thought was worse than having two team mates captured by an evil former ranger.
“She lost her status as the first female red ranger when she went evil…” the former green ranger and head of SPD’s tech departments began to explain, trailing off as eyes widened and jaws dropped.
Bridge didn’t even have to finish his comment as the Dino Thunder team all recalled the conversation they’d had with Beth before the attack…
“Elizabeth Trini Oliver officially became the first female red ranger… and the fact is that Charlie always makes sure she knows her opponents, and she will have learned this from SPD’s computer banks…” stated Sky, joining the conversation again, his voice flat as he divulged the danger Beth and by extension Kim were in.
“And I bet she’s all kinds of crazy about the fact… damn…” swore Ethan, his eyes flying to Tommy, the black ranger’s face having gone pale at the information.
“We can’t leave them in there then,” stated Tommy, his voice now taking on a pleading tone, verging on desperation.
“We won’t. I just don’t think storming the building is the best plan,” explained Sky sympathetically. Beth was under his command and he wasn’t going to fail her.
“Then how do we get them out?” asked Kira, the worry in her tone causing Conner to gravitate to her side, catching her hand in his.
Turning to his wife Sky reached over to lightly cup her shoulder. She looked up at him with a questioning gaze even as he gave her a lopsided smile.
“You still have Jack’s number?”
-End Chapter 5-
Well thanks again for joining me on this crossover roller coaster. Again I want to thank not only my long time readers but those of you new to me as well as the Always a Ranger universe (I have seen a recent spike in favorites to the series so I guess you’re reading for the first time?).
As well, I want to note again that the Power Rangers “To Protect and Serve” fic-a-thon is now taking sign-ups for stories. Please see the ff.net community (To Protect and Serve), the AO3 collection (To Protect and Serve Power Rangers fic-a-thon), or the LiveJournal community protect-a-thon for rules/sign-ups.
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