Disclaimer: Saban owns the Power Rangers, Masked Rider, Beetleborgs, VR Troopers and probably a large number of other things as well. I am using their characters without permission and for no profit whatsoever. Ellen Brand owns Chelsea and Teddy Oliver and I thank her again for letting me use them occasionally. The Doctor, Master, TARDIS, UNIT and Validium are all creations of Terry Nation and appeared in the BBC series Doctor Who. North Valley comes from the series Super Human Samurai Cyber Squad. Queen of the Crown was the villain from Galaxy Rangers and is owned by Saban. Mandarin is owned by Marvel and Golobulus belongs to whoever created Action Force the Movie.
Timeline: This story is immediately after cliffhanger at the end of Rangers Gone Psycho Part 3. Authors Note: Anything written like ~this~ is a thought, anything like -this- is a conversation Sam is eaves dropping on, [this] is a computer message and anything appearing like *this* is a mental telepathic message. This story is a part of my take on the IDWar storyline. It is an alternate version of the Conquest of Evil series, however events here are different.
by Shadow Ranger
Angel Grove Park 11 July 1996,
Seven bodies appeared in the centre of the park, six Zeo Rangers and one human. All of them were alive, but with full memories of what had happened. The Dark One had taken the precaution of placing a protection spell over them. The spell ensured only the other Rangers could see their faces, which was just as well, because as the Zeo Rangers appeared, so did the press.
"Out of my way!" Anthea Trener shouted, pushing her way through the crowd, her cameraman hot on her tail. "Switch that thing on," she told him. "This is Anthea Trener, Channel Three News. I am coming to you live with an exclusive story from the centre of Angel Grove Park. Just minutes ago the costumed heroes known as the Power Rangers Zeo appeared on the ground, followed by an unknown youth.
From my unique position I can see that all seven are alive and I believe that any minute now we may be lucky enough to obtain an in depth interview."
"Take their masks off!" somebody shouted.
"Do it now before it's too late!"
"Don't let them get away!"
Anthea shuddered, the crowd was turning into a mob, desperate to find out who the Power Rangers were. Although part of her was appalled at the idea of taking advantage of seven unconscious people, another part of her was also anxious to see what lay under the masks.
~Think of the ratings!~ She thought to herself.
Turning back to the camera, she made up her mind that this interview would make her famous. Even if as a result she used the Rangers.
"A unique opportunity has presented itself for the world to finally discover the identities of those who fight for us on a regular basis."
With the help of two other willing reporters Anthea approached the Rangers. She didn't consider that maybe they needed help. Her only concern was the opportunity to make television history and a chance to become famous.
"All right people, move along and leave the Rangers alone."
Anthea swore to herself when she recognised the voice. Of all the times for a police officer to show up, why did it have to be during her moment of fame? ~And of all the officers who could have turned up why did it have to be Park?~
Detective Park was in charge of Angel Grove's Police Department's Homicide and Missing Persons Department. Unfortunately, in a City like Angel Grove that also meant filling in on matters concerning the Power Rangers. He was a very honest officer and his opinions of the Rangers were only slightly higher than his opinion of the Press. Of course his opinions were well known by the local media.
Anthea had made it part of her job to know which officers she could 'persuade' to leave her alone. Detective Park was not one of them.
"You too, Miss Trener," another officer told her. "We need to be able to get the paramedics in here."
"Come on Detective," one of the reporters shouted, clutching at straws. "Don't you want to know who they are as well?"
"I already know who they are," Detective Park shouted back. "They're a dangerous nuisance and unfortunately have a right to their privacy. Now move back!"
"Haven't you heard of freedom of the Press?" one of the reporters asked.
"Have you ever heard of obstructing an officer?" the officer replied.
Further arguments were forgotten as the other team of Power Rangers appeared. Moving in silence and apparently unaware of the news crews standing nearby the Rangers checked on their comrades and then teleported away. Not a word was said.
"Did you see that?" a man asked his brother from his hiding place in the park.
Both he and his sibling were dressed in the traditional black and purple outfits of the Foot Clan. The first man was known only as the Shredder, a name that struck fear into the hearts of his enemies. He was the mastermind of the Japanese Mafia in the United States, responsible for organized gangs in New York City and Washington DC. Now he was looking to extend the reach of the Foot into the area of the United States referred to as the Freak Zone.
The man he addressed was called Oroku Saki, the junior partner in the Saki crime syndicate. Oroku was responsible for the training of the syndicate's deadly enforcers and was second only to his brother.
"I saw," Saki answered. "The Power Rangers have been defeated."
"Yes," Shredder told his offspring, "And now is the time for our forces to take over while they are weakened."
"But what of those who came to collect them?" Saki asked.
"They will not cause us a problem," Shredder answered. "They are new and untested. Before the day is through, we will conquer and send them scurrying like rats."
"And the Foot shall rule supreme," Saki finished.
"Exactly," Shredder agreed. He removed the front of his armour so Oroku could see his face, a rare honour for Oroku. "Come, my brother and we shall ready ourselves for battle."
Seconds after the Rangers vanished, the Red Ranger reappeared. White Ranger stood on one side of his leader and Purple Ranger stood on the other side. Jason had forgotten how much he hated the press conferences Rangers were sometimes obliged to give. Normally they took place after a Ranger had been placed under a spell or one of the villains had created imitation Rangers. As they stood waiting, the crowd started to fire question after question at them.
"Red Ranger, why are there two sets of Power Rangers?"
"White Ranger, why has the Red Ranger taken command again?"
"Why have you returned to your original powers?"
"What are your suits made of?"
Red Ranger raised his hand to speak, but the questions kept coming. In the end he nodded to the Purple Ranger. She produced a strange looking rifle and fired at the ground. Ice crystals formed around the reporter's feet, causing them to shut up.
"Okay, you can stop now," Red Ranger said.
Purple Ranger released the trigger and both the rifle and the ice disappeared. Now all eyes were on the Rangers, wondering what would happen next.
"Thank you," Red Ranger said. "Your questions will be answered after I have finished this statement."
Jason took a deep breath and then started to recite the speech Billy had prepared. What they needed now was a quick explanation so they could make a fast getaway and see to their friends. That was when the difficult part would begin. They had to deal with a young boy, who had almost been murdered without knowing why and the Zeo Rangers who were still undergoing initial scans.
"About a fortnight ago a new villain known as Minion chose to attack Earth. The Zeo Rangers needed assistance so they created a second team of Rangers. The Zeo Rangers were captured during a recent battle before the new team could be activated. Minion has been destroyed and the Zeo Rangers released. You may rest assured they are expected to make a full recovery."
"Wasn't a Ranger responsible for their capture?" one of the reporters asked
Jason took his time before answering. Biilly's treachery was a sore point among the Rangers. In a way the Rangers were disappointed that with Minion's demise the Psycho Rangers had ceased to function. Jason knew he would have like to even the score and he suspected his friends felt the same.
"One of Minion's Psycho Rangers was able to infiltrate the Zeo Rangers and arrange their defeat. Had it not been for Psycho Blue they might have been able to hold out until help arrived. The Psycho Rangers have been neutralized and we do not anticipate any future problems."
"What of the boy?" Anthea Trener asked.
"Yes, Red Ranger is it true that he will become a Ranger one day?"
"The boy Minion abducted has no link with the Power Rangers at this time. We have no way to tell if Minion was telling the truth or what the future will bring. I'm sure you can understand that anything is possible. At present there are no plans to make him a Ranger."
"The boy is alive and will be reunited with his family as soon as we have made sure there is no lasting harm. The press is requested to respect the boy's privacy," White Ranger added.
"What was the boy's name?"
"No comment," Purple Ranger said. "We have agreed to maintain his privacy. That includes his name."
"Red Ranger, Minion gave the Zeo Rangers a count of six in which to kill him. Why did they not take the opportunity to do so?"
Jason stared at the reporter; glad that she could not see the glare he was giving her under his helmet. Detective Park groaned at the question. Lois Kent was not known for her tact or sensitivity.
"Ms Kent, you may not have noticed, but Minion did show the footage of the Zeo Rangers being tortured. As far as we can tell that was only the most recent session. Time wise the Zeo Rangers were prisoners for six months. After that kind of treatment their reactions were bound to be impaired. I wonder how you would have faired in those circumstances?"
"Excuse me Red Ranger, but I am not a Power Ranger. It is not my job to save the world. I just report the news." Lois glared at the masked hero, unsure if her words were having an effect. Just to be sure she added: "At least I seem to be able to do my job."
"Miss Kent, the Zeo Rangers have risked their lives on a regular basis to protect this world and the freedoms we enjoy. I suggest you bear that in mind before criticizing them. We are only human."
The reporter looked like she was about to respond, but her partner decided to intervene and silence her.
"What about the other heroes who were held captive?" Clark Lane asked.
"As far as we can tell, the Beetleborgs and VR Troopers have been returned to their homes. The Masked Rider has been helping us during this time and will be returning to Leewood shortly."
Sensing the opportunity to end the interview, the Rangers teleported away to find out how their friends were doing.
"How are they?" Jason asked when he arrived at the Power Chamber.
The Zeo Rangers and the boy they had identified as Justin Stewart, had been taken to the medical bay where Billy and Trini were checking for injuries.
"It's not good Jase," Zack said. "Billy says their wounds have been healed, but their bodies and minds are exhausted. They're going to need time to recharge."
"They're rejecting the Zeo powers too," Sam added.
The Green Morphin Ranger had been keeping a constant eye on his teammates and had noticed the sudden energy spikes caused by the body rejecting the Power.
"I was afraid this would happen," Zordon said. "Their bodies are too weak to hold the Zeo powers; if they remain this close to the Zeo Crystal they will die."
"Couldn't we use the Zeo Crystal to give them a boost?" Kimberly asked. "Like we did with you."
"I fear that might be our only option," Zordon said.
"What about Justin?" Jason asked.
"He is not in any danger," Billy said as he and Trini entered the command chamber. "I gave him a sedative until we could determine a logical course of action and decide whether to alter his memory."
"Can we do that?" Zack asked.
"Yes," Billy said. "But doing so is against the rules."
"Rangers!" Zordon said in his most commanding tone. "Our priority is the other Rangers. If you infuse the Zeo Crystal with your powers, it will feed the Zeo Rangers without hurting them."
As five of them had done a few years before when Zordon had sacrificed his energy to help Tommy, the eight Rangers now stood in a circle next to the Zeo Crystal. It was Jason who spoke the words to begin the energy feed and as each Ranger added his or her own power they felt unified in a way they had never felt before.
"WE CALL ON THE POWER OF ALL THOSE COMBINED!"
- RED RANGER!
- WHITE RANGER!
- GREEN RANGER!
- PURPLE RANGER!
- YELLOW RANGER!
- PINK RANGER!
- BLUE RANGER!
- BLACK RANGER!
"Body Aspect!" When five others joined, the Rangers was uncertain, but as Saurian spoke his power, the link grew ever stronger.
"Mind Aspect!" Thalian called as his hand was placed atop Saurian's.
"Spirit Aspect!" Ninjor said.
"Ranger Aspect!" Only in a place with a connection to the Morphin Grid so strong that it rivalled Phaedos, could Dulcea have hoped to survive. With thirty-five powers present she was able to join the link.
"White Falcon Morphin Master!" An almost transparent hand touched the top of the pile, feeding the mixture with the stored power of ten thousand years of imprisonment. If Dulcea arriving had been a shock, then being able to see Zordon in his true form must have been heart stopping.
The pile of hands disappeared as the powers mixed and flowed into the Zeo Crystal. The remaining damage Minion had caused was repaired as even the tiniest flaws were removed. The careless splitting that had resulted in only half the Zeo powers being recovered was rectified. The Zeo Crystal was once again divided into its ten equal parts. The Morphin Powers became trapped in the crystalline structure as the power of Zeo twisted the magic to work as science.
With an explosion of light the Zeo Crystal powered itself up to its full potential. Gold, Silver, Black, White, Purple, Red, Green, Yellow, Pink and Blue streams of light flowed around the Power Chamber. The Red, Green, Pink and Red streams hit the appropriate Ranger causing them to glow for a short time. The Gold and Yellow streams split in half, powering up the Gold and Yellow Zeo Rangers as the remaining energy dispersed. The Silver, Black, Purple and White streams also dispersed as the crystal returned to its normal glow.
The Morphin Rangers remained together for a short time, enjoying the shared feeling of power. Then they gradually relinquished their connection as Zordon and Dulcea vanished from view.
"I do not like this brother," Oroku said. "Robots are not capable of honour."
"It has already been decided," Shredder responded. "The Foot is needed to maintain our empire in New York. These machines will be sufficient for our needs. If we strike now, the advantage will be ours. The Power Rangers are vulnerable."
"Yes," Oroku agreed. "But what if the Rangers find a way to turn our robots off?"
"Then we have this," Shredder replied as he held up a tube of Mutagen. "This combined with the power of Ninja Magic shall enable us to infuse our few human ninjas with the power of animals."
"It is a good plan Shredder. We shall begin immediately. Ninja, attack!"
From behind the Sentinel Statue in Angel Grove Park a group of ninjas emerged, making their way around the press conference until they cut off all escape routes. The blue ninjas armed with swords kneeled in the front, the red ninjas behind with their bows and the black unarmed ninjas moved between the two lines.
The people in the park watched as the ninjas emerged from nowhere. The police still in the area drew their guns and aimed at the approaching ninjas. Angel Grove had an abnormally low homicide rate due to the quick response of its police force and heroes like the Power Rangers to help.
Two ninjas clad in metal, one of whom Detective Park recognised as Shredder stepped from the group. He raised his hand in a fist and the surrounding ninjas fell into fighting positions.
"I am called The Shredder," one of the metal-clad ninjas said, confirming Detective Park's fears. "The Foot Clan are taking over this city. Resist and you will die!"
"Hey, I don't care who you think you are buddy," Detective Park said, "But you're under arrest. Ascot, put the cuffs on him."
As the officer approached the ninjas moved. One of the black clad ninjas grabbed the officer's wrist and twisted it until he heard the crack of breaking bones. With his other fist inserted in the man's neck, he twisted before discarding the corpse.
"Shoot!" Detective Park ordered.
The other police officers opened fire, but the few bullets that struck a target did little damage. The ninjas avoided the cop's fire and then either disarmed or killed them. Detective Park found himself falling back on moves he had learned from his son. He was lucky that while he had been knocked unconscious, he was still alive.
"Zordon, what's happening?" Trini asked.
Of all the Rangers in the Power Chamber it was only Trini and Zack who were able to drag themselves away from their sleeping friends. Although they were friends with the Zeo Rangers their time away from the team meant they were not so attached emotionally.
Sam and David were both down in the medical bay keeping watch over Tommy and the others. It was made worse in David's case because Kat was lying in the bed next to Tommy. Whether he felt anything for the Pink Zeo Ranger was still unclear, but he knew that unless she recovered he would never find out.
Tanya meanwhile was clinging desperately to Adam, unwilling to let anyone hurt her boyfriend. Seeing Aisha lying unconscious added to her own guilt. Had she not left to seek the Morphin powers Aisha might not have been hurt.
Kimberly and Billy were in the Zord Bay trying to restore some of the damaged Zeo Zords. Both had had some catching up to do and had taken advantage of the distraction to stop worrying Justin for a short time.
Jason was in the gym working out. As leader of the Morphin Rangers he had taken the loss of the Zeo Rangers especially hard. He was worried about Trey, with whom he had developed a close link while holding the Gold Ranger powers. He wondered what had caused the gold power to split and whether it would affect the Rangers in the future.
"I am detecting a disturbance in Angel Grove Park," Zordon answered. "Behold the Viewing Screen."
"Ninjas," Zack muttered.
"And they're killing those people," Trini added.
"Ai-yi-yi-yi-yi, Adam's father is there!" Alpha reported.
"Zordon, can we help?" Zack asked. In the past the Rangers had kept out of anything that didn't involve demons or aliens.
"Yes Zack," Zordon answered. "I detect a powerful evil behind this attack. With the Zeo Rangers humiliated on television, ordinary villains are prepared to attack Angel Grove. You must defeat this threat or others may join them."
"Shall we go?" Trini asked.
"Let's," Zack replied. "Zordon, we need a mass teleport for all civilians. It's Morphin Time!"
"Black Ranger Power!"
"Yellow Ranger Power!"
"It's done," Alpha said as the two Rangers arrived in the park. "Computers show these ninjas are robots."
"Thanks Alpha, that makes this a lot easier."
The various civilians in the park vanished just as one of the ninjas was about to slay Detective Park.
"Don't make us do this," Yellow Ranger warned.
"Ha," Shredder snorted. "You will learn a harsh lesson in humility."
"Get them!" Oroku ordered.
Although similar in numbers to the vast armies of Cogs, Tengas and Putties the Rangers had faced in the past; the ninjas were fast and innovative. Neither Ranger was able to land a blow against their opponents. The ninjas however managed to throw the Rangers about.
"Rolling Thunder!" Black Ranger called.
Storm clouds closed around a couple of foot soldiers. Exposed to the echoing thunder claps and extreme vibrations the ninjas fell to pieces.
"Ninja Ranger Power!" Yellow Ranger called.
A ninja warrior drove his sword through her armour and made a clean cut from top to bottom. Yellow Ranger was split in two and her body collapsed into a pile of fake armour.
"Looking for me?" Yellow Ranger asked.
The ninja swung around towards the noise as Yellow Ranger stabbed it with her Power Daggers.
"Three down," Zack quipped.
"More to go," Trini finished. "Zordon, how about sending some help?"
"Your message will not be received," the metal clad ninja told her as he held up a smaller radio wave jammer. "Now you will learn a harsh lesson."
Both Shredder and Saki performed a complicated kata that caused Yellow and Black Rangers to wonder what they were facing.
"Not bad," Zack said. He put as much confidence as he could muster into his voice and added, "But you lack my cool dance moves."
"And a knowledge of Ranger communications," Blue Ranger added as he drove his Power Staff into one of the ninjas.
"And teamwork," Red Ranger finished as he drove his Power Sword through a ninja's neck.
"Attack!" Saki hissed.
The battlefield was set as ninja avoided the Rangers' attack and landed their own blows. Blue, Pink and Yellow Rangers faired the best having all received ninja training during their time as Rangers. Black Ranger quickly learnt the ninjas were faster than his Hip-Hop Kido and Red Ranger found his strength was a drawback when his opponents were faster than him.
"We're outmatched here," White Ranger said as another sword landed on his back.
"Right," Red Ranger agreed. "We need to slow them down. Billy, any ideas?"
"I might have something in my lab," Blue Ranger replied. Placing his hands on his hips, he teleported away in a column of blue.
Seconds later he returned with a strange capsule. As the other Rangers jumped back, he threw it at the ground and watched it explode. Green slime covered the ninjas, jamming their gears and slowing them so the Rangers could attack.
"You will pay for that," Saki warned as he charged at Billy.
Oroku was wearing a heavy version of the Power Armour that Jason and Sam used. Hydraulic motors increased the power of his arms and legs. His helmet was designed to withstand most attacks and deliver devastating head butts. In his hand he held a katana that was twice the length of an ordinary blade.
Billy saw Oroku charge and was already moving as the katana connected with his armour. Sparks flew as the uniform's internal mechanisms reduce the sword's impact. Oroku brought his weapon round for a second strike, but this time Blue Ranger moved out of the way.
Splitting the weapon in half the Blue Ranger blocked the next attack, trapping the blade between his two clubs. Aiming for the head, he landed a few shots that caused Oroku to raise his arms in defence. Then when Oroku was distracted he drove the other piece of Power Lance into the ninja's leg.
"I'm not a killer," Blue Ranger said as he stood over the cringing Saki with his Blade Blaster drawn. "Order your ninjas to stand down."
"Mercy is for the weak!" Saki hissed.
Pulling the portion of the Power Lance from his leg and grimacing from the pain, Saki drove the weapon towards the Blue Ranger.
"Hellfire!" Green Ranger yelled. A ball of green fire engulfed the metal clad ninja as Blue Ranger jumped away.
Oroku could feel the temperature rising as the fire covered his armour. Specially designed nozzles fired a retardant gas to protect him from further harm. He looked over to where his brother was fighting to see that Shredder was fairing as badly.
Whereas Oroku's armour relied on its punching and kicking power for offence, Shredder's suit was covered with spikes and blades strategically placed to allow attacks from any angle. Currently the Shredder was fighting a losing battle against Red and Yellow Rangers. Red Ranger had activated his own armour and the Shredder's slices were having little effect.
"Yellow Ranger Battle Armour!" Trini called.
Based on the Spirit Aspect and not the power-based Body Aspect, the Yellow Battle Armour was designed to allow freedom of movement. Highly decorated yellow fabric covered each piece of metal and was adorned with images of the Sabre-toothed Tiger, Griffin, Bear and Yellow Ranger. The separate parts were fastened to the Yellow Ranger by fine metal cables. The plates flapped around freely as Trini moved but covered the most exposed areas at all times.
Yellow Ranger charged at the villain, her daggers piercing his armour. Shedder twisted his wrist to enlarge the blades on his gauntlets. The daggers sparked as the spikes knocked them aside.
"My warriors will subdue your friends and then I shall finish you," Shredder announced.
"I don't think so Shred Head," Red Ranger cried as he barged his shoulder into the villain.
Shredder laughed as Red Ranger found himself caught on one of Shredder's shoulder spikes. Shredder lifted the Ranger away and kicked him to the ground. With a powerful backhand he decked Yellow Ranger and stood victorious over his adversaries.
"I'm going to peel that armour off your dead bodies," Shredder told the Rangers as he drew his own sword and moved in on Jason.
"Power Nunchuks!" Purple Ranger called. "One, two, three, four, five."
Using the experience she had gained during her time as Zeo Ranger II - Yellow, Tanya moved with the speed of the Hawk and the venom of the Spider. After whipping one ninja with her weapon she combined the two handles and bludgeoned a third opponent. A third robot charged her from the offside, but Tanya was quick and trapped its hand in the chained section of her Nunchuks. After striking the fourth machine with the blunt end she wrapped the chain around the fifth warrior's neck.
"Hi-yah!" she called as she pulled her hands apart, slicing through the ninja's neck.
The third attacker was moving again, but Purple Ranger already had the solution in hand. Drawing her Blade Blaster she fired a single shot and watched as the downed robot fell.
"Nice," Black Ranger commented as he hacked at another ninja.
Staying in a fixed spot Zack was using the Power Axe to frustrate his attackers until they all charged together. Under his helmet Zack smiled as he leapt into the air and watched them collide.
The slime Billy had provided meant the ninjas were too slow as Zack fired a single blast and reduced them to slag.
"Power Bow!" Pink Ranger called.
During her time as a Dino Ranger, Kimberly had relied on her bow only to fire arrows. Now with the power of Ninja and Thunder she knew how to use the weapon to its full potential. Every part was deadly, from the drawstring to the individual arrows.
Landing in the centre of a group of robots she used the bow as a club before changing direction so that the string could slice a lone ninja in half. Summoning her arrows she used them like daggers and then jumped away and fired her remaining shots from a safe distance.
"Pink Ranger Lightning Strike!"
Holding the Power Bow over her head she watched as lightning struck the tip. Lowering the weapon to chest level she pointed at the regrouping ninjas and watched as they were fried.
"Hey David, don't take too long," she called.
The White Ranger nodded as Saba blasted another ninja. Continuing to attack, he soon levelled his selection of robots. When he was done, he joined Pink, Purple and Black Rangers ready to finish the task.
"There's still too many of them," Pink Ranger pointed out.
"Why don't we try a laser attack?" Purple Ranger asked her white teammate.
White Ranger nodded and the two friends joined hands. Purple and white energy combined into a ball of power, which was released when they pushed their palms forward. The blast struck half the remaining ninjas as Pink and Black Ranger prepared to combine their own attacks.
"Power Axe!" Black Ranger called.
"Power Bow!" Pink Ranger cried as she slotted her weapon into the same position used when forming the Power Blaster.
"Power Crossbow!" they yelled together. "Fire!"
Pink and black fire smashed into the surviving robots, leaving only the human ninjas to run away.
"Give it up Red Ranger," Shredder said as he approached the fallen warrior.
"Never!" Red Ranger replied. "Armour Release, now!"
The hidden seams surrounding the Battle Armour were released, splitting the front and rear sections a small trigger appeared in the Red Ranger's hand and he waited until Shredder was directly over him before pressing the button.
Shredder heard a faint click and a slight hiss before the front of the Red Ranger's armour exploded outwards. Shredder stumbled back before using his spikes to discard the attacking object. As he pushed it aside, the Battle Armour vanished to be replaced by the charging form of Red Ranger.
The Power Sword sliced through Shredder's own weapon as Jason turned for a second pass. As he reached Shredder the second time, he used the hilt to throw the villain off balance.
"Power Daggers!" Yellow Ranger called again.
As Shredder turned, the Yellow Ranger was already upon him. The Power Daggers pierced his shoulder plates.
Shredder fell back and looked for the first time since attacking to see the condition of his forces. Oroku was injured but at least fighting back, his human ninjas were regrouping to try again and his robot soldiers were scrap. As he fell back, Shredder was already thinking about what to do.
Shredder knew that none of the Rangers were true ninjas even if they had the fighting skills. He also knew that a ninja needed more than physical skills to survive. There were mental strategies he could se to gain an advantage if he could find the opportunity.
"You Rangers are nothing," he said to the Red Ranger. "I will beat you just as Minion destroyed the Zeo Rangers."
Between his first tenure as Red Ranger and his return to claim the Gold Zeo power, Jason had learnt how to gain more control over his temper. He was not as hot headed as he had once been, but it was still a potential weakness Shredder wanted to use. The mention of the Zeo Ranger had had its desired effect as Jason's control snapped and he charged towards the villain.
Shredder waited until the Red Ranger was level with his right foot before he sidestepped the teenager and used his momentum to throw the boy to the ground. He picked up the Power Sword and pointed its sharp point at Jason's throat.
"Rangers!" he called. "Surrender or I shall destroy your leader."
"If he dies so does your brother," Green Ranger said coldly.
"I will live his loss," Shredder answered as he dragged Jason upright and held the Power Sword against his throat. "Will you?"
Reluctantly the Rangers relinquished their weapons and Green Ranger allowed Oroku to escape.
"Very good," Shredder said as he pulled a dead porcupine from a compartment in his armour. "Now Red Ranger you will have the honour of being the first to try my Mutagen."
Shredder hit the Red Ranger with the porcupine and then pulled the tube of Mutagen from his belt. He twisted the lid on the canister and moved Jason into a kneeling position.
Jason closed his eyes and considered his next move. He was pinned down and his friends could not move. He knew the Zeo Rangers were out of commission and unless one of his teammates could sneak behind Shredder, he was lost. His eyes snapped open as he heard Shredder groan and felt the Power Sword move away from his throat.
As the other Rangers looked on, Shredder cried out in pain and released Red Ranger. Behind him something moved. Its body was barely visible except as a green grid when still.
"Who are you?" Shredder demanded as he turned to face his new attacker.
His answer came as a punch to the side of his face. He staggered as a second punch caught him in the gut.
"You will pay for that!" Shredder shouted angrily.
He charged the spot where his mystery attacker had been and was treated to a firm kick to the chest. Something metallic appeared for a second as the mystery opponent jabbed it into Shredder's arm. The shoulder armour on Shredder's arm fell to the floor, as the Red Ranger's rescuer became visible.
The Rangers gasped as they caught their first glimpse of a potential new ally. He or she was obviously a Ranger, although there all recognition ended. Like the Morphin Rangers it was dressed in Plastoid armour, but there was no evidence of either a Power Coin or Morpher.
The majority of its armour was black with golden chest armour. A green grid was also visible as the lines covered every point of his body. The helmet was a combination of blue and red with silver highlights. A white belt with a yellow buckle flowed around its hips with a yellow holster on each side. Around the belt in shades of purple and pink were a series of shapes similar to those featured on the Zeo Rangers' helmets. As a final touch, the boots were white with purple diamonds and the gloves were white with pink lines covering the knuckles.
As Shredder charged the newcomer, his spikes at their maximum length, the mysterious Ranger caught Shredder's fist. As the momentum carried the villain forward, the Ranger increased his pressured and crushed the villain's hand.
Drawing back his own fist he punched the villain with a powerful uppercut. He leapt into the air and delivered a drop kick to the top of the Shredder's head.
There was a loud smash as the Shredder collapsed on top of his canister and was covered with the Mutagen. The chemicals burnt their way through the armour and carried the porcupine's DNA into the villain's body.
Shredder screamed as his body started to grow larger. Armour and flesh merged as he continued to mutate into a human/ porcupine crossbreed. Muscles and bones enlarged until Shredder was towering over the Rangers and their new ally.
"We need Ninja Zord power, now!" the Rangers called.
"Ninja MegaFalconzord!" Red Ranger called.
"Ninja Battlezord!" Green Ranger called.
The unknown Ranger raised his own hand and silently summoned his own Zord, which was a larger version of himself with an enhanced version of the Zeo Cannon on its left shoulder and the Zeo Power Blaster on its right wrist.
The Crane started to fold to form the head while at the same time the Frog transformed to become the legs and the Bear converted to become the Ninja MegaFalconzord's upper body. The already modified Ape and Wolf joined onto the Bear to form the arms as the Crane linked on to become the head. Then the whole upper body joined onto the Frog as the Falcon Zord linked onto the back. Hands formed over the Ape and Wolf's heads.
The Panther Zord transformed to stand upright on its hind legs. The head rotated downwards to become the chest and the front paws became the arms. The Hawk Zord's wings and head folded into the body as the Hawk Zord joined onto the shoulders of the Panther to become the head of the Ninja Battlezord. The Panther's tail converted into a Power Sword as Purple and Green Rangers slid into the cockpit ready for action.
As the three large Zords battling with the villain Green Ranger thought he could hear the new Ranger cry: "Siek-yah!"
"We need to finish this," Red Ranger said as the Ninja MegaFalconzord tossed Shredder to the ground where the Ninja Battlezord savaged him with a barrage of vicious punches.
"Battle Strike!" Green and Purple Ranger called.
The Battlezord sliced through the Shredder's armour with its sword; the Ninja MegaFalconzord connected with its own finisher. The unknown Zord fired both of its own weapons resulting in a blanket of dust and smoke.
Shredder shrugged off the combined attacks and launched his own offence. The spikes launched from his armour, striking the three Zords.
"We need more power," Green Ranger noted.
"Right," Blue Ranger agreed. "And I know just where to get it."
"Billy, this is risky," Yellow Ranger warned.
"We don't have a choice," Red Ranger answered. "Ninja Zords, power down!"
The Ninja MegaFalconzord and Ninja Battlezord disassembled and returned to their hiding places as the Rangers summoned some new power.
The Shogun Zords lined up as the Rangers teleported into their cockpits. There were now five Shogun Zords and unlike some of the other combinations they were capable of joining into a single Megazord. In front of each Zord stood the slightly smaller Battle Borgs. Now modified to work with the Full Aspect powers, the Battle Borgs were able to combine.
"Put them together!" Red Ranger called.
The Zords and Battle Borgs charged forward, each combining in the same way. The Pink and Purple Shogun Zords formed the lower legs. The Black and Yellow Shogun Zords formed the upper legs and lower torso, and the Green Shogun Zord transformed into half the upper body. The White Shogun Zord transformed into the other half of the upper body and the head. Finally the Red and Blue Shogun Zords took their place as the arms, the Red Zord acting as the upper arm and the Blue Zord creating the forearms and hands. The Battle Megaborg formed in the same way and stood ready with its own sword and shield.
The almost sentient Battle Megaborg attacked, using its speed to pound the almost recovered Shredder. After a few punches, kicks and a sword swipe the Megaborg jumped away and threw its shield towards the villain. The shield transformed into a cross and rolled on its end towards Shredder. As it picked up speed, it glowed with the combined power of eight Rangers. As it struck the giant ninja, the Rangers were ready to finish the task.
"Shogun Megazord Sabre, power up!"
The fire sword ignited in the Zord's hands. The Megazord moved its arm to the high right position and then swung it down and to the left, slicing through the Shredder. The last of the Mutagen evaporated as the sword finished its journey and Shredder exploded.
"It's over," Red Ranger said as the two Zords and Megaborg stood victorious. "Let's go home."
After ensuring the Zeo Rangers were resting the Morphin team gathered in the command chamber. They all had questions to ask, not least about who they been fighting.
"Rangers, I am afraid that the news of the Zeo Rangers defeat has caused other villains, some of whom are Earth based to try to fill the void left by Minion. I am afraid that those ninjas you faced to day are but a small portion of what is to come."
"We must be ready," Billy said.
"We will be," Jason assured him. "We're going to have to stand in until the Zeos return. We cannot leave Earth defenceless."
"Zordon, who was that other Ranger?" Kimberly asked.
"We don't know Kimberly," Alpha said. "The scanners reveal that his energy is the same as that used by the Zeo Rangers."
"That is impossible Alpha," Zordon said. "The Zeo Crystal is complete and the Zeo Rangers are in the Medical Bay."
"Then there must be something else creating those readings," Billy mused. "I'll help Alpha to check the computer again."
"There is something else Rangers," Zordon said. "The Zeo Rangers' injuries are mental as well as physical. Their healing may take some time. I therefore request you consider yourselves fully returned to active duty. Do you accept?"
"You know it Zordon," Zack said on behalf of the whole team.
"Then I suggest you all get some rest," Zordon said. "I will call you if you are needed."
"Let's go guys," Jason said. "I know Ernie will be pleased to see you guys again."
In eight columns of light the Rangers left. They had won the battle and Zordon hoped they would soon win the war.
End of Part