Silence surrounding him. Darkness loomed in. Without his eyesight, he relied on all his other senses. He listened closely for noises and used his sense of smell to pick up any change in the scent of the air. Every now and then he would feel a flicker of power, but before he could use it, it would be gone.
The small, blond-haired, nine-year-old boy tensed every muscle, waiting for the attack that he knew was coming. He focused his energies on his surrounding, testing all of his senses in anticipation. Beads of sweat slowly ran down his face, but he took no notice to them. Instead, he concentrated on the surrounding air.
A sudden movement to the left of him! He lunged forward, his lightsaber connecting with the solidness of another lightsaber. The opposing lightsaber pressed firm against his. The boy faked to his right and brought the lightsaber into a forward thrust. The person stumbled back, and the boy took advantage of the opportunity and slashed at him again. A moan escaped the lips of the person as they leapt at the boy. The boy once again felt the shifting of the air and stepped to the side. As he felt the person ran past him, he kicked them in the small of their back. For a split second, he loosened his guard the smallest of bits. That was all his enemy needed to knock him to the ground. As the boy hit the ground, his lightsaber went flying. The boy sighed, laying his head on the ground, allowing the coolness of the ground to dig into his sense.
"That's enough for today, Anakin," called a gruff voice from behind him. Anakin Skywalker sighed once again as he slowly sat up, removing the blindfold as he did. One glance at his master told Anakin all that he needed to know about his performance. "That's enough."
"What did I do wrong, Master?" he asked, his voice unusually controlled. Obi-Wan Kenobi looked down at his apprentice, feeling the boy's own disappointment. He slowly sat down on the ground, motioning for Anakin to do the same. Silence filled the air for a few seconds, as Obi-Wan put together his thoughts.
"You allowed yourself to become distracted. You can never do that during a battle. Your enemy will not be as forgiving to your mistakes as I am."
Anakin's eyes fell to the ground. "I'm sorry Master. I won't let it happen again."
Silence once again fell between them, with Obi-Wan eyeing his apprentice thoughtfully. The boy does learn quickly, I'll give him that. And he is a natural with his lightsaber. But what worries me is the fear that he is constantly battling against. Maybe Yoda was right. Maybe Qui-Gon shouldn't have pushed it.
Before he could voice his concerns to the boy, the screeching of the alarms destroyed the stillness of the room. Anakin and Obi-Wan glanced at each other only briefly before taking off for the control center of the palace. As the ran in, Anakin felt his heart skip a beat as his eyes fell on the Queen of Naboo. Even with her decorative gown and traditional face paint, he could see the eyes of Padme staring at him.
Stop it, Anakin. She isn't Padme. She's the Queen of Naboo! She doesn't have time to talk you, Anakin reprimanded himself. But no matter how hard he tried, he could not keep his eyes off of her.
"What is going on?" Queen Amidala asked, her voice considerably calm for the situation they were experiencing. The commanding general turned to her, his voice urgent.
"Someone is attacking the village. From the few accounts that we have, the troopers attacking them came in great numbers, yet there doesn't seem to be a leader around." the general explained.
"What are these troopers called?"
"We don't know." answered the General. "They were never called by name, so we couldn't get any information on them."
Obi-Wan turned to Queen Amidala. "I'm going down there, to see if I can find out what's going on." he told her. As he ran out of the room, Anakin followed him. Obi-Wan turned around and looked at him.
"You stay here, Anakin." he commanded. As Anakin opened his mouth in protest, Obi-Wan calmly explained. "You are too early in your training to fight. If you go now, there is a good chance you will be killed. Do you understand?"
Anakin nodded his head. "I understand." Obi-Wan nodded and ran out of the room, getting to the place that was being attacked as fast as he could. As soon as Obi-Wan disappeared from site, Anakin turned to the viewing screen, watching in frustration as people ran, screaming, away from the white troopers. Anakin sneaked a look at Amidala. Her face was, as usual, blank of any emotions. But for a split second, Anakin saw pain and fear in her eyes.
I cannot let my people suffer again. They do not deserve this! Amidala thought angrily as she looked at the screen. After the recent seize of the Trade Federation, she believed that her people deserved peace and contentment. Her wish was now shattered by the attacking troopers. But who is attacking?
Suddenly, a flash of movement caught the corner of her eye. She turned towards the movement, wrenching her eyes away from the unbearable scene. As she did, she met Anakin's gaze. As they two locked eyes, she managed a small smile. That boy is destined for great things, though he has a hard road to travel. I hope that there's a chance his future includes this planet. We could use a defender of his caliber. And one of his heart.
Obi-Wan crept through the one of the many back alleys throughout the city, listening carefully as the shooting grew closer. Even in this alley, he could see the destruction that had been done in such a short amount of time. Every so often he heard a scream, indicating that one of the troopers blasters had met its target. Suddenly, he felt a tremor in the Force. Sharply turning to his left, he was able to block the blaster beam that a trooper had shot at him. The beam reflected the blast, just grazing the arm of a trooper. Obi-Wan cursed silently to himself at his miss.
"Destroy him," one of the troopers ordered in a monotone voice. Stormtroopers swarmed in from all angles, lasers shooting all around him. His training kicked in even before he could think, for he found himself dodging and reflecting the beams. He made short work of the stormtroopers, the first four being taken out by their own beams. He leapt over the remaining two and, with a quick sweep of his lightsaber, took both of the troopers out. He searched vainly for the leader, but found the trooper had taken off.
He slowly stepped out of the alley, the Force flowing swiftly through his veins. He looked swiftly to his right and saw about two dozen troopers rushing at him. As he prepared for their attack, they suddenly veered off course. Obi-Wan followed their movement with his eyes and saw a young female, maybe around eighteen or nineteen, running as fast as she could while the troopers chased her. Every so often she would look back, fear and panic twisting her features as the troopers gained ground. All of a sudden, one of the troopers pulled out a blaster, and in one quick shot to her leg, brought her down.
"Aaaagh!" she screamed as she fell to the ground, hard. Obi-Wan ran over to her, hoping to reach her in time to help. But as the trooper that had shot her down reached her, she kicked him in the chest with her good leg, knocking the blaster away. She lunged for the blaster, reaching it just before the trooper did. With incredible aim, she shot at the troopers, taking out a few of them. But there were still too many. Just as the blaster was knocked out of her hand, Obi-Wan leapt into action, taking down a few troopers with quick slashes of his lightsaber. The trooper froze and pulled out their blasters. Obi-Wan closed his eyes and, concentrating heavily on the Force, reflected each of the shots they shot at him. As the blaster shots began to lessen, he opened his eyes. Troopers littered the ground. As Obi-Wan continued to deflect shots, a small army made up of the people of the city and Gungans, the water dwelling creatures, rushed at the remaining troopers. Within minutes, the troopers were all taken down. Obi-Wan looked at the leader of the army, Captain Panaka.
"Is this all of them?" Obi-Wan asked. The Captain looked around, taking in account the troopers lying on the ground, some dead and others damaged, and of the hurt civilians.
"We believe that's the last of them." Panaka said. He looked behind Obi-Wan and motioned to the girl lying on the ground. "Who is she?"
Obi-Wan shrugged. "I don't know. I haven't asked her yet. Why don't you look around to see if there are any more of these things hiding." The Captain nodded and with a quick order, he and his army took off to look for more. Obi-Wan turned to the girl. "Are you okay?"
"Yes, I think so." she said. Her brown hair went a little past her shoulders. She was wearing a light pink t-shirt and blue jeans. As she looked up at him, her doe brown eyes shining with gratitude, Obi-Wan felt a chill make his way down his spine. There was something about her...
"Need some help?" he asked, putting the feeling in the back of his mind. When she nodded, he kneeled down and stuck his hand out. As soon as her hand touched his, a feeling like electricity ran through his body, causing him to tense up. But as soon as it came, it left. Obi-Wan helped her stand up and she leaned against him in support. The two of them made their way down the street and into the palace. She looked around nervously, uncomfortable about her surroundings. He smiled at her to reassure her. "It's okay. You'll be able to get help here."
After a sort while, the two of them walked into the main hall of the palace. There, gathered around the throne, where many of the high ranking people of the city. They walked in unnoticed, and Obi-Wan heard Captain Panaka finishing his review.
"....after searching the entire city, we haven't found anyone else. We think that they might be connected with the girl they were chasing."
Amidala turned her full eyesight on him, a flicker of interest glittering in her eye. "What girl?"
The suddenness of the new voice caused everyone in the throne room to jump. Only Obi-Wan and Anakin did not. Obi-Wan looked over in approval of his apprentice, for Anakin was the only one who had noticed the two's entrance into the room. Captain Panaka beckoned the girl forward, gesturing towards a seat across from the throne. Obi-Wan supported the girl as she struggled over to the seat. To all the others, she looked like the picture of confidence. Only Obi-Wan could feel the slight fear that rolled off her skin. As Obi-Wan helped her into the chair, Panaka walked up to her.
"Who are you? What are you doing here? Why were those things chasing you?" he demanded. She looked slight taken aback by the string of questions, but she shook it off. She looked around, seeing expectant and suspicious faces surrounding her.
"It would be easier if I told you my story from the beginning. I will answer your questions, but you should probably hear the background information first."
All eyes turned to Amidala, waiting for her response. She nodded her head and slowly sat down in her throne. The rest of the inhabitants quickly followed suit as the girl began her story.
"I am from the planet of earth, the third planet from the sun in the Milky Way Galaxy. Five years ago, I was just a normal girl. I had good time and bad times, but over-all life was good. Then she came."
"The evil being known as Kanara. She appeared suddenly, taking everyone by surprise. Because of her, life as we knew it was destroyed. She single-handedly destroyed our only means of planetary defense, the Power Rangers. For years they had protected the world from evil beings that had tried to take over. But they couldn't stop her. She had caught them too much by surprise, and she knew too much of their skills. She killed them. All of them. From that moment on, life was over on the planet. She destroyed everything in her path including..." a sob escaped her lips as images from her past came back to her, "including everyone that I cared about."
"But she couldn't kill me. I ran from her and hid out in a vast system of tunnels, built under the ground. Then, one day, she found the tunnels and captured many people, including me. She brought us to her palace, with the intent to turn us into the troopers that you fought today. Stormtroopers, she called them. And she did. She managed to control and enslave many people who had once been good, decent human beings."
"But I escaped her. I stole one of the many space shuttles she had built and started away from the earth. But she chased me. I ended up crash landing on this planet, and you know what happened after that."
"But why was she trying to build up an army?" Queen Amidala asked her, her suspicions not completely at rest.
The girl shrugged, her petite shoulders trembling slightly as she did. "I don't know."
Amidala shared a glance with Captain Panaka, their glance unreadable to everybody but each other. Captain Panaka nodded slightly at the queen. Amidala turned her attention away from Captain Panaka, but did look back at the girl. Instead, she turned to her handmaidens.
"Show her to a room. Make her comfortable until tomorrow, and tend to her wound." The handmaidens nodded and after carefully helping the girl up, they helped her walk out of the room. Suddenly, Amidala seemed to have another thought. She loudly called out, "Wait. What is your name?"
"Anne. You can call me Anne."
In a barren desert on the planet of Earth the wind started to kick up, causing dust to swirl through the plains. Though the planet seemed to be deserted, it was not. The people of the planet were merely in hiding, living in fear of the evil that controlled them. But once in awhile it was necessary to come to the surface of the planet. Only a few would come up, though. But the few that were on the surface when the wind started look around in shock and in fear.
Ever since the planet had been taken over, there had not been any wind. In fact, there had not been much of anything. The rains had stopped, the wind had slowed, and even the sun seemed to shine less. The entire planet of earth had turned mostly into a desert. But the wind was back.
As the people watched in amazement, a bright light shone above a spot in the land. As the light became brighter it made itself into the form of two beings. The light became so bright that the people had to shield their eyes away from the site. The light slowly disappeared and left two people in its wake. Both of them had blond hair and blue eyes, but the girl's hair was put up in a ponytail. Both fell to the ground as the light disappeared. In less than an instance, the people of the planet had the two beings surrounded.
"Who are you?" a man asked gruffly as he stared down at the two. The girl, Kat, winced under the glare of the sun. Though the sun was not very bright, it gave off more light than she was used to. She tried to stand up, but her legs gave out on her and she fell back to the ground.
"My name is Katherine Hillard and this is Zhane." she answered nervously, looking up at the man. He glared at them for a minute, then turned to the others that were standing behind him. Leaning close to them, they began to whisper back and forth. Kat and Zhane looked at each other nervously before turning back to the people that had come up to them. Suddenly, the man turned back towards them.
"Stand up," he ordered. The two of them stood up on shaky legs. The people that surrounded them stepped forward and roughly grabbed them, pulling Kat and Zhane's arms behind them. They winced in pain and in fear as they tried to adjust their arms. It was of no use, though, as the people had them in firm grips. The man who had spoken to them glared at them once more.
"Take them to the temple."
The people nodded their heads and quickly pulled Kat and Zhane towards an entrance to the tunnels. The man looked around and then lowered himself to the ground. He slowly wiped away the dust that had been moved by the gusts of wind. He uncovered a small sewer-like covering. He pulled the cover off and went in, the rest of the people quickly following.
They slowly descended down a long ladder, watching their step carefully. Kat and Zhane were allowed to go down by themselves, but they were carefully watched. The at long last reached the bottom. The two prisoners were immediately grabbed again and put in the same positions they had been in previously. As he struggled to position his arms comfortably, Zhane looked at the man that seemed to be in charge.
"Where are you taking us?"
"To the temple." Zhane and Kat shared a look of confusion as they were led down a long hallway. Kat looked around in amazement as she looked around the tunnels. Doors lined the passage. Kat was able to briefly catch a glimpse of the inside. She saw tables and chairs in some, couches in others.
Probably living quarters, she mused as she caught glimpses of kitchens inside the rooms. She was so busy observing things around her, she did not notice where she was being led. The men leading them walked up to one of the rooms, and typing in a code, opened the door. Kat gasped as she walked in, her face beginning to pale.
"The Power Chamber," she whispered in awe as she looked around, seeing the familiar sites. "But this was destroyed!" The man that had talked to them earlier looked at her sharply as he heard her. A red blush covered her face as she averted his eyes.
"It was. But we rebuilt it." he explained curtly. Kat and Zhane were led through the room, to a row of tube-like objects.
Reminds me of Dimitria's tube, except smaller! Kat thought, awe still filling her. But how do they know these things? They were never in the chambers!
One of the tubes in front of Kat opened and she found herself being thrown into the tube. She started to panic as the tube closed up, leaving her no means of escape. She pressed her palms against the side of the tube, desperately hoping for a way out. She found none. She looked around wildly and found that Zhane was in the tube next to her. She could tell he was in the same state as she was, for he too was pushing against the wall of the tube.
Kat looked to the man that had been leading them. He paid no attention to them, for his mind was completely on the task at hand. He was leaning over one of the many control panels, his hands moving quickly as he typed things in.
A bright light suddenly filled the tubes and both Kat and Zhane felt like fire was consuming them. Kat gasped in pain as the light slowly flowed over her, first her head, then her shoulders. With ever inch that the light moved, Kat felt her strength beginning to drain out of her. As the light reached her midsection, Kat felt herself begin to lose consciousness. Even though the room had begun to spin, she still managed to catch a glimpse of someone new walking in. As she began to black out, one thought crossed her mind.
Meanwhile, Zhane gritted his teeth as he tried to bear the pain that flowed through him. He closed his eyes, trying to concentrate on anything other then the pain. But as the light passed his thighs, he began to feel the room spinning around. He opened his eyes to see stars clouding his vision. As he fell to the ground, a flash of blonde caught his eyes. His last conscious thought was one of disbelief.
"They're clean." the man working at the panels said, turning the machine off. In an instant the lights disappeared. The man turned towards the two people standing behind them. "Take them to a room."
The two nodded and quickly walked over to the tubes. They opened the tubes and, picking Zhane and Kat up, walked out of the room. The man turned around and found himself face to face with two people who had walked in during the process.
"Where did they come from, doctor?" One of the newcomers asked.
The doctor shrugged. "I don't know commander. We didn't ask them. We wanted to run the test before we tried anything else. The only thing that we could tell was that it has something to do with the scroll that were holding."
The commander nodded, looking over the scroll that the doctor now held before him. Though the doctor was fairly new to the system, he knew what he had to do. He picked the scroll up and unraveled it. The page he saw was alien and unfamiliar, so he placed it back in the doctor's hands.
"I'll take it to the lab to have it analyzed." the doctor said. The commander nodded and with that the doctor left the room. The other newcomer looked up at the commander.
"Will they be okay Justin?" she asked. Justin Stewart stared at the now-empty tubes in front of him, nodding slowly.
"They'll be fine. All the neutralizer did was search for any mark of evil in them. Since nothing was found, they were taken to a recovery room." he explained. "You know that, Karone. You helped design them."
"I know, I was just......"
"Worried?" Justin suggested. When Karone did not answer, he placed a hand on her shoulder.
"Zhane will be fine, Karone." he said softly. "I promise." She nodded sadly as she looked away.
"I now he'll be fine physically, but I don't know if the his internal wounds will ever heal."
As the room came into focus, Zhane squinted at the bright light above him. He sat up slowly, moaning in pain. His entire body seemed to scream out in agony, even parts that he was not even sure he had. She gently shook his head, trying to clear out his thoughts yet at the same time trying not to cause even more of a headache. He looked around the room in confusion, trying to make sense of where he was. He slowly rubbed his fingers on his temples, trying to think of what had happened to him. The last thing I remember is a fiery sensation and then the flash of blonde...
"Karone!" he shouted jumping to his feet, his aches and pains forgotten. "I saw Karone!"
He jumped out of the bed he was in, determined to find out exactly what was going on. As his eyes focused in on his surroundings, he noticed that his outfit had been changed. Instead of the torn and stained jeans and shirt he had been wearing, he was wearing an outfit that was familiar to him. As he stared down at his clothes, he was transported back five years, to the days when he would wear that outfit all the time. The only difference was that instead of the suit being black, it was gray. And instead of the shirt being gray, it was black.
"It looks kind of like my old uniform," he whispered in awe.
"That's because it's a copy of your outfit."
Zhane spun around in shock as he heard the soft voice. There he found himself face to face with a person he had not seen in years. A person who he thought was dead. Karone. Yes, she did look different, for her blonde hair now flowed halfway down her back, instead of the chin length he had last seen. And though five years had passed, she actually looked considerably younger. Maybe it was because she no longer looked haunted by her evil past. Or maybe she had grown up during the long five years. Whatever it was, it had changed her. She was calmer, more mature.
Zhane tore his gaze away from her eyes and looked down at her clothes in shock. It was the same style as his uniform. The only major difference was that instead of a black shirt he wore, hers was purple instead.
As the shock slowly began to wear off, he realized he was staring. Now all he felt was surprise, confusion, and joy. He had found someone who was a great part of his past. He had found a person who he had, at one time, had deep feelings for. He had a person who was connected to his best friend, Andros.
"Karone!" he shouted again as he flew towards her. As soon as he reached her he embraced her in a hug that had so much emotion that it startled both of them. The stood there for a moment, holding each other, remembering their past. After a few minutes, they pulled apart. Zhane looked at her, smiling sheepishly as he did.
"You don't have to be." she whispered, smiling at him. Though years had passed, she knew that it was still Zhane. He did look older, for his face was slightly lined at places and his hair was longer. His eyes also showed age, for there was a deep pool of despair hiding in them. But it was Zhane, and that all that mattered to her.
Suddenly, his whole demeanor changed as she stared at him. He stood more stiffly than he had moments before and a questioning look entered his eyes. Karone felt her heart begin to sink as she realized what had happened.
"Karone....did anyone else make it?"
That was the question she had been fearing. Ever since she had seen him in the temple, she had known he would ask that question. She opened her mouth as if she was going to answer, but no words came out. She closed her mouth, instead looking into his eyes. He knew at once the answer to that question.
Remorse filled him as he felt his grief beginning to grow. It overwhelmed him, for it felt like he was losing his friends yet again. He slowly sank down into the chair besides him, his eyes staring into empty space. Karone knelt down besides him, putting an arm around his shoulder as she did. He turned to her, his eyes glassed over by the tears that were threatening to fall. Karone felt strangely disturbed for she could not even tell what he was thinking.
"What happened to them? Did they receive a proper burial? And how did you live?" His string of questioning seemed to unnerve Karone for she was silent for a few moments. She at last sighed. She stood up, pulling him up as she did.
"C'mon," was all she said as she lead him out the door and down one of the long tunnels. He paid
no attention to their destination, instead taking the sites and sounds around him. They passed door after door, each one with a different label on them. Before he could ask Karone what the labels meant, his attention was diverted by the outfits the people wore. Everyone wore an outfit exactly like his and Karone's, except that the shirts were in a variety of colors.
"Karone, why does everyone wear these uniforms?"
"It's a bit of a dress code. Wearing outfits that are very much alike take away from the class system that used to exist on this planet. It kind of makes everyone equal in the way. The only rank that we have by profession. Different professions wear different color shirts. Doctors and nurses usually wear either white or green. Technicians and mechanics wear gold and yellow. Military personnel wear either black or pink. Anyone wearing blue, black, or purple are considered to be the top personnel.
Zhane nodded at the explanation, smiling as he looked at her purple shirt.
"So I guess that would make you pretty high in the rankings, huh?" he teased. She smiled at him and nodded.
"Yeah, I guess I am."
Zhane looked down at his own black shirt, a wave of sadness filling him. He absently pulled at his shirt as he turned to look at Karone. "Top personnel wear black, huh? I don't think I deserve that."
"Because you're a former power rangers." she explained simply. "The people of earth treat the power rangers as heroes, since the saved the world from harm for so long. They respect they have for all of the rangers, including you and Kat, is absolutely incredible."
Zhane shook his head in disbelief as he heard her explanation. "Why do they treat the power rangers as heroes? We failed them. We allowed Kanara to take over Earth. We were defeated!" Karone stopped suddenly, pulling Zhane's arm so the two were out of the way.
"They know you were defeated. But they don't care. If it wasn't for you guys, thousands of people would have died the first time the planet was attacked. Since the rangers were able to hold off the enemy for so long, this system of tunnels were was able to be built. They are incredibly thankful for that, even if you were defeated."
Her short speech caused the beginnings of a smile to cross Zhane's face as he realized that the people of Earth were an incredible race. A thoughtful silence fell between them as they continued on their way. They soon reached the end of the tunnel, walking up to a highly guarded room. Even though only two guards stood in front of it, Zhane could see lasers, and force fields blocking the entrance to the room. He looked at the security in shock, wondering what could be so highly guarded.
Karone walked up to one of the guards, pulling out an identification card as she did. The guard took the card, carefully scrutinizing it. He examined it for a few minutes constantly looking from Karone back to the guard. After what seemed like a lifetime, he gave the card back to Karone. With a jerk of the head to the other guard, both of them moved out of the way.
Karone walked up to the door and put her hand on a small pad next to the door. The pad read her hand quickly. In less than an instant, the lasers and force fields disappeared from the hallway, leaving the entranceway empty. The two quickly made their way through the hall, hurrying down to the other side. As soon as they were to the next door, Karone put her hand on another pad. This time, the door behind them closed and the laser and force fields rose up again. The door in front of them opened and they slowly walked in.
"Wow," Zhane whispered as he looked around. The room was lit only by a small light that shone directly above the entranceway. It cast the room in an eerie glow. Zhane slowly looked around, taking in the account the thirteen tubes that came out from the walls. He took a step away from the doorway, squinting as he tried to get a better look at the tubes. What he saw made him pull back, tears welling in his eyes.
"What is this place, Karone?"
Karone walked over to him and looked at the tubes. "It's called the crypt. It's a memorial to those that gave their lives to protect the planet. Once the great battle was over and Kanara left, the people of Earth quickly went to the battlefields and carried the rangers away. Some of them were still alive, but others were dead. I was the only one that they could actually revive."
Zhane took in this information as he slowly started to circle the room. He started with the first tube and moved onward. He slowly circled, repeating the names he read on the plaques.
Billy Cranston. Trini Kwan. Zachary Taylor. Jason Scott Lee. Rocky DeSantos. Aisha Campbell. Adam Park. Tanya Sloan. Tears slowly began to flow down his fast as he came to the next tubes. These names and faces were very familiar to him. TJ Johnson. Cassie Chan. Carlos Santora. Ashley Hammond.
He stopped at the next tube, placing a
shaking hand on the plaque.
"Tommy Oliver, Katherine Hillard, Zhane of KO-35," he whispered. He was so absorbed in his thoughts that he did not notice Karone's approach until she laid a hand on his shoulder. He jumped as he felt the gentle pressure on his shoulder, turning to look at her as he composed himself.
"Since they couldn't find any of your bodies, the separated the tubes. They were hoping that maybe, just maybe, you guys had lived." she explained softly.
Zhane nodded soundlessly as he walked past two empty tubes, knowing almost immediately what they were for. One glance at Karone, who averted his eyes, assured his suspicions. Those tubes are for her and Justin, the only other ranger who wasn't present at that battle.
He moved to the last tube, staring at it in shock. Kimberly Harte.
"Kim?" he whispered, looking at Karone in shock. Karone nodded, staring at the tube as well.
"When they put this memorial up, they didn't know what to do about her. After all, she had defended the planet for years. They ended up deciding to put her away from the rest of the rangers, to a corner by herself. Even though she is put here, not many people visit it."
Zhane nodded, his thoughts overwhelmed by all of the information he had received. He glanced around the room once more before turning back to Karone.
"So you're the only one on that battle field that lived." he said quietly. To his surprise, Karone shook her head.
"No." she said. As he opened his mouth as say something, she cut him off. "Some of the others are still alive. But they were badly injured. The people of earth put them in these tubes, status tubes, they called them. The tubes were technology used by Zordon, as a place to put rangers that were close to death. But because of Justin Stewert, the power rangers were put into them. He built these all by hand, then donated them to the tunnels when the battle against Kanara started. Since then, the rangers have been in here."
"So you put the rangers, living and dead, in these status tubes." he asked. When Karone nodded, he asked another question. "But how do you know which ones are still alive?"
Karone pulled him over to a small control panel, near the back of the room. He looked at the panel and noticed that out of thirteen panels, only four of them were lit up. "The ones that are lit up are the ones that are alive." Zhane looked up at her, hope rising up.
"So that means
"We're not sure. When they were first brought in, eight of them still had faint signs of life. By the time we got them in here, six were still alive. Over the years, since we can't find a way to heal them, we've lost two of them. The ones that still have signs of life are Aisha Campbell, Jason Scott, Ashley Hammond, and Andros."
As Kat opened her eyes, she realized at once that she was sleeping in a strange bed. She sat up quickly, only to groan in pain. She slowly forced herself to stand up, looking around her surroundings as she did. Across from the plain bed she was slowly getting out of, a small table was set up covered in food. Her mouth watered as she looked at the food, but she could not bring herself to eat it. After all her years of being with Kanara made her wary of anything that was offered to her. As she debated whether or not to eat it, the door to her room opened and she looked at it to alarm. The alarm quickly turned to shock as she saw who was standing there.
"Tommy? Justin?" she whispered as she stared at them. A laugh of happiness burst from her and she ran over and enveloped the two in a giant hug, tears streaming down her cheeks. "I never thought I would see you again!"
The two hugged her back, both of them fighting back tears that threatened to fall. She hugged them, knowing that they were real, and not a mirage. Her hunger was momentarily forgotten as she hugged two people who she cared deeply for. But as the seconds began to pass, her stomach growled loudly. She let go of Tommy Oliver and Justin Stewart and blushed as they laughed gently at her expense.
"I think we should get something to eat," Tommy Oliver suggested as he smiled at Kat. Kat smiled back as she nodded, leading them to the table. She slowly sat down, still looking at the food warily.
"Go ahead and eat it Kat. It's not like it's going to bite or anything," Justin said, smiling at her. She laughed lightly at her own foolishness and helped herself to a plateful of food. Years ago, she never would have dared to take that much food. After all, she did have to watch her weight because of dance. But now she did not care. It had been years since she had last had a good meal and she was not going to let the chance pass her up. Justin and Tommy watched in shock as she finished off the whole plate of food in a matter of minutes. As she reached for some more, Tommy looked at her in surprise.
"Woah! I don't think I've ever seen you eat that much, Kat." he remarked as she put her plate down. "If you eat that much, you might ruin your figure!" Kat stuck her tongue out at him as she began to eat what was on her plate, the tensions that had been between the three of them completely dissolving. It seemed as if they had never been away from each other.
"Yeah, the only person I know who could eat that much was Rocky!"
As soon as the words were out, Justin immediately regretted it. Any mention of the past caused him pain, even though he was not even at the battle to witness the slaughter. Kat stopped eating and looked down, tears filling her eyes once again. Tommy looked away, trying to keep all the emotions that he felt off his face. "Oh man. I'm sorry guys, I shouldn't have.."
"It's okay Justin," Kat whispered softly. "You don't mean to. It was a mistake." Justin nodded, even though her words didn't help that much.
After all she's been through, she deserves some time to relax. And you have to go and bring up something that happened years ago that affected all of us so much.....Idiot. Justin thought as he tried to avoid eye contact. Silence filled the room as the three of them sat there, not wanting to say anything. Finally, Kat could not take it anymore.
"So...how long have you guys been working down here?" she asked, trying to move to a different subject. "And why does everything look like it come from the Power Chamber?" Justin immediately perked up.
"Because most of it is!" he exclaimed. As Kat looked at him, she thought she saw pieces of the twelve year old boy she had last seen, not the seventeen year old that sat before her. "When the rangers blasted off for space, I started going to where the Power Chamber had been, trying to find a way to help. One day, I found a small disk that had been buried underneath mountains of destruction. I immediately put it home and put it in my computer, eager to find out what it was."
"I was amazed at what I saw. The disk
showed me the entire layouts of the
We got as many people as we could down in the tunnels. And since then, we've been trying to find ways to improve on what we have." Justin explained. Kat looked at him in shock, her blue eyes shining with respect.
"That's incredible, Justin." she said. "I never realized that you were so into all of that!"
"Neither did I, until I saw it for myself. Man, was I impressed!" Tommy exclaimed. Kat turned her attention to Tommy.
"So what have you been doing?"
"Actually, I haven't been doing much of anything. I just got here a couple of days ago, and not long afterwards, you got here." he said. Kat looked at him in confusion.
"What do you mean you were only here for a couple of days? Where were the rest of the time?" she asked. Tommy sighed.
"When Kanara sent the cloud of evil on me that was suppose to kill me, something else happened. Instead of killing me, the cloud turned me into a falcon. I remember realizing something was wrong when I appeared in the tunnels. I couldn't communicate with anyone, since I was a falcon and all. That's when I found Justin. He was helping some of the scientists work on a new invention to create food out of no where, so people could live. For five years I was trapped in the body of a falcon until a couple of days ago, I suddenly changed back. I don't know why I did, but all I remember is hearing the words 'I conjure thee to withdrawal"
In a small but ornate room galaxies away from Earth, sat an eighteen-year-old girl. She listened carefully to the noises in the hall, checking to see if anyone was coming, looking for her.
Or, as I should say, looking for "Anne."
She laughed to herself as she closed her eyes. She drew herself into deep concentration, her hands cupped gently as she did. In a flash of purple light, a small transmitter appeared in her hands. She opened her eyes, smiling with delight as she saw the small machine. She once again tested her senses, checking to see if anyone was coming. She found nothing. She clicked the transmitter on. In a flash of light, a three dimensional hologram appeared of a black hooded figure.
"Have you punctured their defenses yet?" the figure asked, his deep voice filled with evil. "Anne" smirked as she looked at the figure.
"Yes, and it was easier than you said. The Jedi hasn't figured me out yet. He's too young to do any real harm." she said boldly. The figure chuckled at her boasts, shaking his head slowly.
"He suspects already. You must watch him at all times. He is very strong, though he is young."
"Anne" rolled her eyes at the figure, shrugging his warnings off.
"Whatever. Anyway, Darth Blidis-"
"Sideous. Darth Sideous." he interrupted, seemingly glaring at her from under his hood. Anyone else in the universe would tremble at the sight of him. His darkness surrounded a person, even if they were not anywhere near him. But he had no affect on the girl. And that fact bothered him greatly. "Anne" paid no attention to his obvious annoyance.
"I don't care how strong he supposably is. I will get rid of him." She leaned closer to the transmitter, her voice softer. "I promise you, Obi-Wan will not stand in my way."
Darth Sideous nodded his head slowly as he looked at her. For a second, "Anne" saw his eyes gleaming out beneath his hood. Eyes so filled with evil that it would frighten anyone. Anyone other than her, that is. She stared back at him, her doe brown eyes changing into a light violet. "I will get rid of him."
"Good. I don't care how you get rid of him, Kanara, just do it quietly. Gain their trust, as I have. Then, together, we shall crush the Jedi and we shall rule the universe!"
Kanara smirked, her eyes flashing violet. Already, she was preparing herself to break their alliance, trying to think of ways to get rid of the Sith Lord. Her thoughts were interrupted by the sounds coming from the hall. The footsteps that she heard began to come closer and closer to her door.
"I have to do. Someone is coming. And don't worry. I'll bring the Jedi and his little apprentice to you as soon as possible." With that, she closed the transmitter. In a flash of purple, it disappeared from her hand. She sat down on her bed and closed her eyes. When she opened them again, they were back to the doe brown color they had been before.
"Anne? Are you awake? The Princess wants to see you." the voice asked. Kanara smiled as she recognized the voice.
It's the little Jedi apprentice, Anakin. That's the one that Darth Sideous wants me to bring to him. she thought. "Yeah, I'm awake. I'll be right there!"
In the ornate throne room of the Queen of Naboo, five people sat around a small, circular table. Queen Amidala looked over at Captain Panaka, the head of her planetary defense. Ever since the Trade Federation had tried to take over the planet, both the Queen and Captain had started the building of many spacecrafts, complete with weapons to defend itself, in case the planet was gone after again. But the planetary defense wasn't the main topic of the meeting. It was about something much smaller.
"How do we know that the girl is telling the truth?" Panaka demanded as he looked over at Obi-Wan and Amidala. The two looked at each other, unspoken discomfort between the two.
"We don't." Obi-Wan said. "There is something blocking her thoughts and feeling from the Force. I'm not sure whether the girl is telling the truth or not. But I do have some sort of feeling about the girl. I'm just not sure what it means."
"We don't care about feelings, we need to know whether we can trust her or not. We barely know anything about her!" Panaka said. "We can't trust her!"
A high-ranking commander sitting directly next to Panaka nodded in agreement. "I agree. After all, we just finished a thorough scan of the entire area and have not found one trace of her so called ship."
"We aren't here to discuss whether or not we are going to trust her," Amidala cut in, glaring at both Panaka and Obi-Wan. "We have to decide what to do with her. She arrived here at a very bad time, since not only is Anakin training, but there is a new Chancellor in the Senate. The girl is not our highest priority right now, but we must do something with her."
Obi-Wan nodded in agreement with the queen. "Queen Amidala is right. Even though the girl is a mystery and very suspicious, she is not what we need to concentrate on now. But we need to get her off this planet, in case Kanara decides to send down more troops to get the girl." he sighed as he looked at the other. "I will take her with me to the Jedi Council, where they will decided what to do with her."
"Yes, we need to get her off of the planet." Panaka said. He then added sarcastically, "Take her with you, and let the other Jedi's examine her. They will be able to tell where she is from."
Obi-Wan looked Panaka in the eye. "Do not doubt the Jedi's abilities. Especially not the Jedi Masters. They will know where she came from. But until we find that out, be careful here. Many people are ready to attack Naboo, to try and do what the Trade Federation could not. Be careful." Amidala nodded as she looked over at the rest of the table.
"Then it's settled. The girl will go with Obi-Wan." As everyone nodded, Amidala turned to the guards at the door. "Let the girl in." The guards nodded and opened the door. Anakin came in first, followed closely by Anne. Anakin looked over at Obi-Wan, awaiting instructions.
"Anne," Queen Amidala called. Anne walked over to the queen and bowed before her. As she stood up, she looked at Amidala. "We have decided that for the time being, for your safety along with ours, you shall be traveling with Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker. They will take you to Coruscant where you shall be examined by the Jedi Masters." For a split second, as Anakin looked at Anne, he thought he saw a look of hatred and panic in her eyes. But it was gone so quickly, that Anakin thought he had been seeing things.
"I will go where you wish." Anne declared quietly, as she looked at the ground. Turning to Obi-Wan, a small smile crossed her face. "I will be honored to travel with a Jedi Knight." Amidala nodded and with a wave of her hand, Obi-Wan walked over to her.
"The ship will be ready shortly. If there is something that you want to bring, put it quickly on the ship." Obi-Wan nodded. He turned to Anakin.
"Anakin, go collect your training materials and take them on the ship." he ordered. Anakin nodded and hurried out of the throne room. Obi-Wan then turned to Anne, smiling at her. "And if you come with me, I will show you where you will be staying on the ship."
Anne smiled up at him. "Thank you. You don't have to go to all this trouble for me." As the two of them walked out of the room, Panaka frowned at Anne's retreating form. He looked down at the ground and frowned.
"I still don't like it," he muttered to no one in particular. "I still don't like it." While Panaka was thinking to himself, Amidala turned to her second in command.
"I am going to my room. I don't want anyone to disturb me, unless it is an emergency." she said. The commander nodded as Amidala turned towards the door and made her way out of the room. Once out, she hurried to her room and, in record time, changed out of her formal uniform and into an outfit of one of her handmaids. She made her way to the ship that would carry Obi-Wan, Anakin, and Anne to Coruscant. No one gave her a second glance, because she looked as if she was a handmaiden of the Queen. As she neared the ship, she saw who she was looking for.
"Anakin," she called out, running over to him. Anakin turned towards her, a look of surprise on his face. He put down the training material that he was carrying and looked up at Amidala. "I have to talk to you."
He looked at her in confusion. "Why do you have to talk to me? Why would you talk to me? You're the queen!" he said, still hurt that she hadn't told him. Amidala silently herself for not telling Anakin the truth.
But I couldn't tell him! What if Qui-Gon had been wrong about him? Then what would have I done. As Anakin looked up at her, Amidala realized she was staring at him "I was wanted..." To tell you that I want you to stay here. To train here and then to stay here, "to wish you luck on your journey back to Coruscant." Coward.
Anakin visibly deflated as he looked down. "Oh. Thanks." I shouldn't have been expecting anything. She's the queen of an entire planet, for goodness sake! Where would she find time for an ex-slave like me? "And I hope that you are able to fend off anyone that tries to attack the planet."
"Thank you Anakin. I hope so too." she agreed, smiling at him. Why can't I tell him! What if he never comes back, and I don't get to what I want to. But what if I never get to tell him that I...I care for him!
I care for him? How can that be? I am the queen of an entire planet. I don't have time for anyone, even those that I truly care about. But how can I care for him? "You should probably hurry up, Anakin. The ship is almost ready to take off." Anakin nodded.
"I know. Everything is almost on." he said. Even though I wish I wasn't going. If it wasn't for that girl, we would stay here and I could continue my training on a planet I'm familiar with! But we have to leave. Leave another place that I am comfortable in. Well, if I want to be a Jedi, I'd better get used to it. "I have to go now. I have to finish putting things on the ship. Obi-Wan says that we have to leave as soon as possible."
Amidala nodded in agreement. "Obi-Wan is right. It is dangerous for the girl to say here. Good luck Anakin." With that, she turned around and walked out of the room. As she got back to her room, she could barely hold in the tears that had threatened to fall. It doesn't matter if I do cry. The face paint will cover everything up. With that thought, Amidala laid down on her bed and, covering her face in her pillow, began to cry.