"The Beginning of the End"
by Hans Adolph
Windows are cracked, brick walls are crumbling. The streets are littered with trash and flaming wreckage. Some cars are overturned, others are not but wrecked just the same. A fire hydrant has been broken off it's spout, now murky water sprays out onto the surrounding area. Some of the powerlines lay, sparking on the ground. The entire place looks desolate.
A lone can is kicked out of an alley, followed by a mangy cat with varying shades of grey fur. The cat sniffs the sidewalk, clearly looking for something to eat as it hasn't done so in a long while. The cat gives a weak meow.
The cat is suddenly startled and runs away back into the alley, just in time to avoid a beam of destructive energy. After a loud explosion from impact only a smoldering black mark remains on the cement.
Then the sound of marching comes in from the distance. The marching sound gets louder and louder. In the horizon, down the street, a black mass appears. As the mass gets closer it is clear that it is a large group of fifty or more Apokoes marching down the street.
In one of the buildings on the side of the street, an unshaven, dirty-looking man peaks out from a broken window. His face is barely visible from behind the single shard of glass still remaining in the window frame.
On the other side of the street in the basement window of another building, children peak out. Only to be quickly pulled away by their mother.
The Apokoes stop their march just before they reach the alley where the cat had just came from. The mass of Apokoes part in the middle to allow their commander to come to the front.
Dark, mysterious voice: "Ah. Such beautiful ruin."
The commander steps forward. He is tall and has a metallic body or at least just wearing very tight body armor. In any event, his slim but muscular physique is easily discernable. The metal is a dull silver or rather dark yet still shiny. He has small, copper vents just below his pectorals. The armor covers his entire body, all the way up to his head with no seams what so ever.
His face is covered with a smooth, copper mask with no distinct features other than two silver, vertical vents located where the dimples of his mouth might be located. The mask tops off with a pair of short, pointy horns. Only his red, pupiless eyes are visible but with no space around them it can't be determined whether or not the eyes are underneath or actually part of the mask.
On the small bit of armored forehead, just behind the top of the mask is an embossed, black omega. A copper omega is located on his abdomen like a belt buckle, only there is no belt around his waist. There no toes on his feet, only a smooth tip like a leather boot. Each of his hands have a long, copper vent running across his knuckles. His fingers end with sharp copper claws.
Finally an entwined, vine-like hosing is wrapped around his right arm. One tube is black and the other is copper. They come from a flat, black bubble on the back of his neck and end at another one, located in the palm of his right hand with a red gem in the middle. Commander: "Wouldn't you agree, dear sister?"
Feminine but dark voice: "Indeed, Demono."
The feminine warrior resembles her brother, Demono. Her body is also covered completely in skintight armor, similar to his. Only her metal is a shiny lavender color that would look like it's either purple or pink, depending on the lighting.
She has silver vents lined on both of her sides that accentuate her hips. With a silver omega located in the center like a belt buckle. She also has a pair of vents, curved just beneath her bosom. A black choker is wrapped around her neck with a copper, circle plate in the front. A black omega is located on the plate.
Like Demono, she also has mask over her face. Hers, however is silver with copper vents located where her dimples would be. Her eyes are also red and also look like they could very well be on the mask itself, meaning the mask could be her actual face. The mask has short horns as well.
Unlike her brother, she has an opening in the upper back of her head with three copper rings. Flowing out of the stack of rings is long, black hair in a ponytail. It's a hairstyle most people would associate with the classical Arabian bellydancer.
Lastly, she has an entwined, vine wrapped down her left arm. It is comprised of one black tube and one silver tube. One end starts from a flat, black bubble on the back of her neck and the other concludes in a similar black bubble in the palm of her left hand with a blue gem in the center.
Female warrior: "But it isn't enough. I still detect the stench of life around here."
Demono: "Well then, Devyla. Let us rectify that problem!"
Demono holds out his right arm, red energy flows through the tubing and the gem in his palm glows. A red light is emitted and stretches out vertically. It solidifies into a copper longsword. The black, leathery hilt is melded to his hand. The blade stretches out a good three feet. The end curves like a three-pronged crescent. The red gem is enlarged three times it's previous size and embedded in the center of the crescent.
Devyla giggles: "Hehe!"
Devyla extends her left arm, blue energy flows through her tubing and the gem glows blue. The blue light emits and stretches out in the same manner as Demono's red light. It solidifies into a sword that looks just like Demono's only it is silver with the blue gem instead of copper.
Demono's sword glows and it releases a devastating beam of energy into the air. Blowing up several buildings. Devyla follows suit releasing blue energy from her blade, receiving similar results.
The man peaking out by the broken, ducks for cover just moments before one of Demono's beams destroys the entire side of the building. It is unknown whether he survived or not.
The sound of a cat catches Devyla's attention. She turns her head to the dark alley to her right: "Hmmm?"
Devyla spots an eight-year old girl, dirty and dressed in rags,picking up the cat. The girl's eyes grow wide as she realizes she's just been spotted.
Devyla: "A little rat and her pet cat."
Devyla aims her sword at the girl: "It's delightful."
The girl with the cat in her arms, runs further down the dark alley and turns the corner just before Devyla's attack strikes the wall in the back.
Devyla: "Yes, little rat. Make this fun for me."
Devyla makes her way to the alley. Demono questions her: "Where are you going?"
Devyla turns her head to Demono while entering the alley: "I'm just going to enjoy a little game of cat and mouse. Hehe. Is that all right?"
Demono: "Hmhmhm. By all means. Far be it from me, to keep my little sister from having fun."
Devyla: "What a wonderful big brother, you are. *giggle*"
The basement is decrepit but full of people dressed in tattered clothes and raggy cloaks. One man sits by the entrance, wearing a cloth potato bag over his dirty old clothes as a poncho. He's wearing a New Bethany Pressers baseball cap and a pair of grey, cloth gloves with the fingers worn off. His most notable accessory however is his rifle, held across his chest and over his shoulder.
Other folks in the basement, a dozen in all and of varying ages, gender and ethnicities are all dressed in similar worn out clothing. Among them four stand out. In the corner, a familiar brother and sister in their late teens or early twenties share an old blanket while sitting in front of a kerosene heater. The girl has purple hair while the boy wears a red bandanna.
Two older men sit at an old fold-out table, going over maps and other papers. They appear to be in charge of this group of refugees and they are currently in an argument.
Older man #1: "For the last time. I'm telling you we need to stay and fight. New Bethany is our home and we can't let these freaks just run us out."
Older man #2: "Fight for what? This city is in ruins. It's a lost cause. The only thing left for us here is death. You know that."
Older man #1: "And where would you propose we run to? That bird witch has taken over everything! The whole world belongs to Ravenine now and there is nowhere else to go to! It's better to die fighting here than to die running away!"
Older man #2: "You're wrong. The Silver Angel can save us. Rumor has it she takes those who find her away from this hellhole. I hear she takes them another world in another galaxy where the bird witch doesn't even exist."
Older man #1: "That's a just a story to keep children from crying and you're a fool for buying into it. The Silver Angel is just an urban legend. Besides if we stay here, maybe the Man in Black will help us."
Older man #2: "The Man in Black? And you have the nerve to call me a fool for believing in urban legends."
Older man #1: "The Man in Black is real, I tell you."
The first older man points to the guard at the door: "Who do you think saved Charlie, last week?"
Older man #2: "Hmph! The only man in black anyone around has seen is that avatar bastard that's always with the bird witch!
Redhead can longer listen to the older men bicker so he stands up and yells at both of them: "You're both being stupid! Man in Black, Silver Angel. They both may be real but we can't trust either one to save us."
Older man #1: "Look kid. Whether we run or fight. We're going to need help!"
Redhead: "No! The only ones that can help us are ourselves. Believing in anyone else is a waste of time. We all believed the Power Rangers would always protect us and look at what happened!"
Paige, still sitting down, pulls on Redhead's pant leg: "Red, don't."
Redhead angrily looks down at Paige: "It's true Paige!"
Older man #1: "You may have a point there."
Paige stands up: "He's wrong. The Rangers will save us somehow. They always have in the past!"
Everyone else in the room scoff at Paige's notion.
Redhead: "Oh, really? Well, where were they when I saw my best friend killed by those monsters right in front of me!"
Paige: "I'm sorry for what happened to Chris. I loved him too but what happened to him wasn't the Rangers' fault. It was.."
Redhead: "Oh please, sis! The Power Rangers were never any good. It should be clear to you and everyone else that protecting us was just a game to them. Always tearing up our city while fighting in those stupid robots. Oh sure they saved people at first but look at what happened. When the going got tough, the Rangers got going!"
Paige: "You don't know that." Redhead: "Oh, I don't? Then where are they? It's been six months since anyone has seen them. They abandoned us, they abadoned Chris!"
Paige: "I'm sure they have a good reason for disappearing. You know, maybe they're planning on.."
Redhead: "A good reason? Did you just say a good reason? The only good reason they got is if they're dead. And if that's the case, they ain't no help to anyone, now are they?"
Paige's eyes tear up as she slowly shakes her head: "No. You're wrong. They're not dead and they didn't abandon us."
Older man #1: "And how would you know that, young lady?"
Paige: "Because I just do. I can feel it deep in my heart. They're still alive somewhere and they're still thinking of us."
Redhead spits on the floor: "You're hopeless, Paige."
Paige gets angry in addition to being defensive: "How can I be hopeless when I'm the only one here who still has any hope?"
Redhead shakes his head in disgust: "You seriously just don't get it do y.."
*KNOCK! KNOCK! KNOCK! KNOCK!*
With the sudden knock on the reinforced door, everyone in the room suddenly grows silent with caution. Charlie looks to the leaders for silent approval, he receives it with a nod. He appraches the door with his rifle in one hand, finger on the trigger. Cautiously sliding open the peep hole, he then turns to the elders and nods to them.
Another man in rags helps Charlie with the barricade bars and then they carefully open the door. Immediately the young girl with her cat in hand run into the room. She runs directly into Paige's arms.
Paige wraps her arms around the girl's body to comfort her as she quivers: "Mary! Where have you been? I've been worried about you."
Mary mumbles, unable to make a coherant sentence.
Paige: "What's wrong? Why are you.. Oh my god!"
Paige immediately stands while holding Mary against her hip. She yells out a warning: "Everyone! We have to get out of here! They're com.."
*BOOM!* Suddenly the steel door is blown off it's hinges before Charlie and the other man could close it. Both men are sent flying into the air by the explosion. The two older mean jump out of the way just before the dented door crashes into the table, completely decimating it.
Redhead instinctively grabs Paige by the arm: "Come on, we're getting out of here now!"
Redhead quickly takes Paige and Mary to the back of the room and palm-presses one of the bricks in the wall. The wall slides open to reveal a secret exit.
As several people help Charlie up to his feet, Devyla enters the former refuge. She takes in a quick assesment of room then holds her hand to her mouth in a demure manner: "So this is where the mice scurry off to and I have you all to myself."
Charlie takes aim and fires his rifle but the shot doesn't even phase Devyla. Another man takes a swing at her with a lead pipe but she simply grabs it with her left hand and lifts the man over her head and throws him like a spinning saucer at Charlie.
Devyla casts her hands with an eerie blue glow: "Perish, rodents!"
The feminine Omega Beast proceeds to release a fury of destructive energy throughout the room. The people scatter out like the mice they're referred to as. Sparks fly off the walls as bricks crumble down. Explosions send men flying into the air and crashing into boxes, tables or just the hard, stone floor. Rags and papers are set aflame. Women cover their children's eyes as they desperately try to escape the chaos. All of this devastation plays to the chorus of Devyla's demonic laughter of delight.
"I wish I could say that I can't believe this is happening. Truth is, this kinda thing has become the norm for us. How's that for sad?"
"It's been that way ever since Marcus and his friends disappeared, six months ago. See, they were a group of superheroes called the Power Rangers and they protected the world from all these whacked out monsters."
"The monsters were led by this.. this thing!"
"I think Darkonda, was his name. Not sure, I never wanted to know a whole lot about the ugly freak."
"The other leader though. She's someone that everyone knows about. You can't help but know her. She used to be called Falconine but then she got like, even more twisted and became Ravenine."
"Of course, most people just call her the bird witch. Though no one's is gonzo enough to call her that to her face."
"Not that she wouldn't kill them anyway. The psycho."
"Heh. 'Psycho'. The funny thing about that is that the Power Rangers were also called the Psycho Rangers. Simon, once told me that it had something to do with how their powers work."
"Doesn't change the fact that Psycho Black is still a pretty freaky name for a good guy though."
"Simon, by the way is Marcus' best friend. Not that Marky would actually admit that."
"Then again, Marcus doesn't admit to a lot of things. He always acts like a self-absorbed, simple-minded jerk. But he's actually a really sweet guy once you learn how to see through his act."
"Still, sometimes it's kinda hard to do that. But I love him, all the same."
"Sorry about that. Here we are running for our lives from a rampaging, super witch with crazy powers and I'm going off about my boyfriend's duality. I guess, I just suck at this narrating thing."
"See, my brother (the guy that's helping Mary and myself escape) is actually the one with a talent for storytelling. Me? I'm just a botanist by trade."
Redhead steps out from behind the dumpster and takes a quick lookover of the alley: "Okay, the coast is clear but be careful."
Paige steps out from the hole in the wall where the dumpster previously covered up. She holds her hands over Mary's little shoulders, who in turn holds her cat in her arms. They are shortly followed by the other fortunate few that have survived Devyla's attack.
Redhead and a few other men push the dumpster back into place once everyone has exited. Most people waste no time in leaving the alley and heading off into their own directions. A necessity as a large crowd of people in the open is the best way to attract Omega Beasts and their troops.
One man however, takes the opportunity to grab Mary by the arm and berate her: "You! This is your fault! You lead them straight to us! I should just feed you to those monsters."
Paige immediately pulls Mary away from the angry man and shields her young friend: "Give her a break! She's just a little kid."
The angry man scowls at Paige: "Maybe but she still messed us over."
Redhead places his hand on the man's shoulder to get his attention: "Back off! She was in danger and ran to safety. She didn't do anything wrong. Besides, it's not the first hideout we've been ran out of."
Paige adds on: "Exactly. If you need to be mad at someone, then be mad at those monsters. Yelling at a frightened little girl isn't going help anyone."
The man grumbles to himself, shakes his head and leaves in an unsatisfied hurry.
Redhead shakes his head at the man then turns his attention back to Paige and Mary: "Come on, sis. We better get going too before they find us."
Paige pats Mary on the head and nods: "Yeah."
As they leave the alley, Redhead turns his head back to Paige: "Oh yeah. Speaking of yelling at the wrong people. I'm sorry for what I said to you back there."
Paige wraps her right arm around Redhead and gives him a small peck on the cheek: "It's cool and it's not like I don't understand how you're feeling."
Redhead gives his sister a begrudged smile and nod: "Thanks."
"I mean, he's not the only one that has it rough now. There's not a thing alive that doesn't these days."
"It's just that it's so upsetting to see him so full of anger, frustration and all that other negative stuff."
"Not that he doesn't have a good reason to be angry. It's just that these days, he's so unlike the easygoing big brother that I've known all my life."
"But I haven't seen that guy since the day Chris died."
"...FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!"
"POWER RANGERS SAVE THE BLUE! FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!"
"POWER RANGERS PROTECTING YOU! FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!"
"POWER RANGERS ALWAYS TRUE! FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!"
The television program's excuse for music is then sung along by an over-excited young skater with a crewcut and piercings all over his head. Much to the bemusement of his audience, consisting of Paige and Redhead sitting on the couch.
"POWER RANGERS SAVE THE BLUE! FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!"
"Power Rangers save the Blue! Fight! Fight! Fight!"
"POWER RANGERS PROTECTING YOU! FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!"
"Power Rangers protecting you! Fight! Fight! Fight!"
"POWER RANGERS ALWAYS TRUE! FI..*"
"Power Rangers always true! Fight! Fight!.. Hey!"
The crewcut kid throws his hands up in the air at Redhead, who happens to be holding the remote control: "What did you do that for, bro? The theme song was just about to get to the best part!"
Redhead smirks and mildy shakes his head as he shrugs: "What 'best part', Chris? All they do is just say the same thing over and over again."
Paige rubs her ears and rolls her eyes: "I gotta go with Red on this, Chris. My ears can only take so much."
Chris groans with disbelief: "Aww. Come on, guys. It's a classic in the making!"
Redhead tosses the remote on the couch and stands up: "Give it up, man. You're preaching to the deaf, mainly because our ears were just burned out. But what are you doing watching a children's T.V. show and a highly commercial one at that?"
Chris points his finger at Redhead: "Hey! Power Rangers is not a kid's show. It's a creative re-enactment of the exploits of our world's defenders. It just so happens that the extravagent costumes and gigantic, exotic vehicles employed by those said defenders appeal to a target demographic of ages eight to eleven."
Paige crosses her arms and shakes her head: "I'm sorry, Chris. Gotta like, call a spade, a spade. The show comes on between the 'Silly Seaman Cartoon Showcase' and 'Super Hyperbolic Adjectatious Primate Mega Team Now!' on a saturday morning. By the way, I can't believe that I even know the names of those shows."
Redhead adds in: "And all the commercials are for toys and junkfood with cartoon characters on the box."
Chris holds his hands up concededly: "Okay. Okay. It's a kid's show but is it really so wrong to watch it?"
Paige stands up from the couch and promptly punches her brother in the arm: "No! If you like it, that's cool. It's just.. well.. maybe it's best if you don't watch it in front of other people."
Chris scratches his head: "Even my friends?"
Paige strokes the deflated Chris' arms: "Especially your friends."
Chris takes a sigh then ejects the Power Rangers tape from the VCR: "Fine. It's your loss guys. You could totally learn a lot from watching this stuff."
Redhead pauses for a moment then asks his question: "I'm probably going to regret this. Like what?"
Chris' frown turns upside down in a flash and grabs Redhead by the shoulders, pushing him back down on the couch: "Glad you asked."
Redhead: "Already regretting it."
Chris pushes Paige back onto the couch then displays a presentation of awkward poses that would embarass a grown man, if he had any shame. Of which, Chris lacks.
Chris: "Okay. Okay. First up. If there's anything we can learn from the Power Rangers, it's that good always wins!"
Redhead raises a brow: "'Good always wins'? Isn't that a little naive?"
Chris steps back and pulls a tan curtain away from the window, revealing the houses across the street and further in the background, the tall buildings of New Bethany: "Hey. The city is still standing, ain't it?"
Redhead bites his lower lip and scratches his right ear: "Everything but the warehouse district at anyrate."
Chris throws his finger up into the air: "Correction! The abandoned warehouse district! No casualties. We live in New Bethany, baby! Homeowners insurance maybe sky high but it's the safest place around! Cuz, when it really matters the goodguys always win and the Power Rangers always got our backs!"
Paige chuckles as she can't help but find Chris' theatrics to be amusing.
Redhead gives Paige the narrow eye then throws his hands up and slaps his knees: "Fine. The goodguys always win. What else?"
Chris throws up two fingers: "Number two, dramatic tension."
Redhead: "What dramatic tension? The goodguys always win, right?"
Chris: "Correct, but to keep things exciting they have to trick us into thinking they'll lose. You ever notice that they always save the day at the last second?"
Redhead: "Not really."
Chris: "Dude! You have to pay attention to these kinds of things. When the Rangers defuse a bomb, they don't pull it off until the timer reaches one second. And when someone is about to impaled by a mutant with a sword, the Rangers always come in and stop the monster just a moment before he strikes. Why? Dramatic tension, that's why."
Redhead strokes his forehead in disbelief: "So the Power Rangers are a bunch of procrastinators. What can anyone learn from that?"
Chris lowers his voice to show that he's getting sincere with his words: "It's all about hope, man. It teaches us to never lose hope. That everything will turn out okay. Think about that guy that's about to get killed by the freak with the sword. The guy in that situation has gotta be thinkin' that things can't possibly get any worse at this point, that it's all over for him. But it isn't."
Chris gets closer to Red and looks him right in the eyes: "Because just when everything seems to be at their darkest, that's when the light comes in. That's when the Power Rangers come in and save him. And that's when he realizes that it was never hopeless, as long as he was still breathing there was always a chance for him."
Redhead smiles as takes everything Chris has said in: "Wow."
Redhead then laughs in Chris' face: "That was totally sappy!"
Paige chimes in: "Yeah it was but I'm like feeling ya, Chris. I really am."
Chris: "Thanks, Paige."
Redhead stands back up and throws his arm around Chris' shoulder: "Look, Chris. If the Rangers' give you hope. Then that's cool with me. I just thinks it's kind of goofy is all but then, I guess that's why you're my best friend."
Chris smiles: "Really? Me being goofy gives me a little charm, eh?"
Redhead smirks and shakes his head then rubs his hands all over Chris' hair: "Nah! But it makes you, a great wingman!"
Chris playfully pushes Redhead away: "Oh yeah!"
Chris: "Ha! Then wing this!" Chris tackles Redhead onto the couch and the guys wrestle with each other. Paige can't help but laugh but then the boys' roughhousing tips the couch over, sending all three of them onto the floor. They continue to laugh away.
"And Chris was right about how things turn out. Just the next day, we went hiking out in woods, not too far from the Rangers' base, actually."
"But I'm only one that knew that detail."
"See, I know that Marcus and his friends are the Power Rangers. Chris and my brother don't."
"But I only found out because of this one time Marcus got hurt, protecting me. That cause him to uh.. what's that word? Um.. Yeah. It caused him to demorph in front of me."
"He was hurt pretty bad but his other friend, (Who like Simon, he won't actually admit is his friend.) Lucas has these cool powers. He can actually heal people by just holding his hands over their injuries."
"I'm sure it's actually more complicated than that but it sure looks he just holds his hands over their injuries."
"Anyway, I learned that Marcus was the Blue Ranger but more importantly, that's when I learned how kind he really is. Cuz, before that there was this other time where he got pretty rough with these bikers and really scared me."
"Oh crap, I'm totally going off on another tangent again. *sigh* Like I said before, I suck at narration."
"Back to how Chris was right about the dramatic tension stuff. We were taking a hike and then we were attacked by a bunch of these weirdos dressed in black with horseshoes on their faces."
"I thought we were done for because I knew the Power Rangers were off in outerspace, helping out their friend, Billy."
"The only ones that stayed behind were Ecliptor and Tabuna. They weren't Rangers but they still helped protect the world. Tabby and I are pretty cool with each other but Eclip.."
"Oops! I almost did it again. I must have A.D.D. or something."
"Anyway, because the Rangers weren't on the Blue, I thought no one was going to save us from the Apokoes."
"But sure enough. I was taught never to lose hope because the Rangers came out of nowhere and kicked their butts.. eventually."
"The goodguys once again won. So it's all good, right? I sure thought so at the time. But not long after that."
Red lightnings bolts burst from the black clouds and wreak havoc upon the city. They tear apart everything they strike, setting trees ablaze, crumbling the sides of skyscrapers and flipping over automobiles with devastating explosions. The citizens of New Bethany run for cover wherever they can find it but such protection is scarce. The Apokoes swarm the streets, attacking everyone and everything they find.
On top of the tallest tower in the city known as Marchand Center, a single purple lightning bolt strikes. It materializes the two orchestrators of the terrible frenzy below.
Watching her handiwork with sadistic pleasure is Ravenine.
Her black feathered wings fully extended, her wing span is twelve feet. Her helmet, predominantly black with purple highlights. Her black, strapless leotard is also detailed with black feathers and copper lines. Her cleavage is covered by a black see-thru mesh. Black bandages are wrapped around the forearms and hands. Her nails are razor sharp talons. Her legs are also covered with black bandages with three talons protruded on each foot. Her face constantly has a manical grin on it, never quite leaving her face just like a cheshire cat. Her eyes lack a human color, they are instead yellow and her pupils are vertical like a serpent's. On her forehead is a tattooed omega. Her hair and her bandages dance in the wild currents caused by her flapping wings.
Standing beside Ravenine is a man, better known outside the enclosed galaxy by his alter-ego, the Phantom Ranger. To the people of Deacon Blue, he is reviled as Sage the Avatar of the Endness.
Sage appears to be caucasian with a slight tan. Like Ravenine, he also has a small omega tattooed on his forehead. He's dressed completely in black leather from head to toe. Leather pants, leather boots, leather gloves, leather trenchcoat. Even a leather shirt. His beltbuckle is a copper omega. The solitary piece of color on his attire, is a ruby pendant hanging off his neck, clearly it is the form that his Power Ruby takes while he is unmorphed.
Unlike Ravenine, Sage doesn't appear to be outwardly enjoying the carnage below. Nonetheless, he gives it his undivided attention, taking in every detail possible.
Another purple bolt breaks away from the sky. This one strikes main street and two figures emerge. They are the Omega Twins; Demono and Devyla. After materializing their evil swords, they join in on the destructiion.
"Still we were never hit this hard before!"
"Whatever changes Ravenine went through, it knocked her completely off her block but it also made her serious."
"Unfortunately, some of us thought they were still playing games."
"Thing was, even if they were playing a game, they threw out the rulebook."
"*sniff* Chris, I'm so sorry."
A quartet of ravers try to make a run for it but are blasted away by Demono's deadly beams.
Demono cries out: "No one is going anywhere except to oblivion!"
Demono then turns his attention to Paige and the others.
Redhead tries to be a human shield for Paige and Chris as futile as the effort will be. He speaks to them without taking his eyes off of Demono for a second: "This is bad, guys. Really, really bad."
Suddenly, a speeding stationwagon screeches around the corner. The family inside was attempting to escape the city but made a very wrong turn. The vehicle brakes as soon as the driver spots the Omega Beast. It attempts to turn around but it is too late, it gets Demono's attention and receives a mighty blast of energy for the transgression.
The stationwagaon is flipped over by the large explosion. All the glass of the car shatters as the roof impacts the cracked street. Demono takes a moment to admire his wicked deed.
Redhead slowly steps back, trying to force Chris and Paige to step back with him: "Quick! We need to slip out the back of Donnie's while he's distracted."
Chris nods while his jaw is dropped: "I'm right with you, bro."
Paige stops and points to the burning car: "Wait, you guys! Look!"
The young girl, Mary crawls out from the car through one of the broken windows. She looks back into the stationwagon and sees something no child should ever witness. The death of her parents.
The shock of it prevents Mary from even crying. She just rests there with her eyes fixated on the travesty. Demono, in turn is fixated on his next victim.
Paige begins to run toward the girl but Redhead stops her by grabbing her arm.
Redhead: "What the hell do you think you're doing? We have to get out of here now!"
Paige angrily pulls away from her brother: "Are you kidding? She's just a little girl, we can't just let this happen."
Redhead pleads with his sister: "Paige, please! I don't want to see what he's about to do to the kid but right now it's every man for himself. We have to.."
Chris dashes past the siblings before they can even react: "Paige, go get the girl!"
Redhead holds out his hand, pantomiming stop: "Chris, don't!"
Just as Demono's sword glows and releases another burst of energy, Chris jumps him from behind and rolls them both to the ground. The energy blast is misfired and strikes a random building down the street instead of Mary.
Demono eyes Chris and pounds the asphalt under his fist into dust: "The insolence!"
Chris can't help but give Demono a devilish grin: "Heh. Saved her at the last second, just like how it's supposed to be done!"
Demono gets back up to his feet and towers over Chris on the ground: "What is this nonsense that you're babbling about, human?"
Paige picks up Mary from the street but the little girl struggles with her: "Come on, sweetheart. It's not safe here."
Mary continues to struggle with her. Redhead grabs Paige's shoulder: "Paige, stop fooling around!"
Paige yells at Redhead: "I'm not fooling around! She doesn't want to leave!"
Meanwhile Chris is kicked to the ground by Demono. The fiend then grabs him by his short hair and yanks his head back. Chris responds: "Go ahead, get your licks in but you're going down, freak!"
Demono growls as he tosses Chris like a ragdoll onto a bus stop bench. The impact that Chris' body makes, cracks the wooden back of the seat.
Chris attempts to shake the cobwebs out of his head as he gets back to his feet: "Is that all you got. Dude, you're just a punk."
Demono strokes his chin as he stalks towards his prey: "Hmm.. I find your baseless bravado to be quite perplexing."
Back at the car wreckage. Paige and Mary still struggle with each other. Redhead frantically looks back and forth between the girls and Chris' dilemna. His eyes widen with horror once he notices gasoline is leaking from the stationwagon and making it's way to a burning wastebasket.
Redhead: "Oh crap!"
Paige tries to talk sense into the little girl: "Please, sweetheart. I'm sorry about your mommy and daddy but you can't stay here. If you do, you'll get killed! And I know your parents wouldn't want that. Please, sweetheart, do you understand?"
Mary stops struggling with Paige at last. Paige asks once more: "Do you understand?"
Mary slowly nods and Paige picks her up and holds her in her arms.
Redhead quickly takes his sister by the arm: "Hurry! We have to get going, RIGHT NOW!"
Redhead and Paige run away from the car just as it explodes. The explosion knocks both of them off their feet. Redhead instinctively lunges underneath Paige to break her fall and she, in turn, shifts her body around in order to fall on her back instead of on Mary.
Demono pays no attention to the explosion, he is too busy being puzzled by Chris' behavior. Chris makes another charge at Demono and leaps into a jumpkick. He makes a perfect kick, landing directly on Demono's chest but with the Omega Beast being prepared for it, he doesn't even budge. Instead Chris falls straight down before the monster.
Redhead watches Chris as Paige and Mary get off of him: "Chris, just get out of there."
Paige gives Redhead a hand in getting off the ground. She then takes Mary's hand and they head inside Donnie's. Paige looks back and sees that Redhead is hesitant to follow. Instead Redhead yells out: "Chris! We got the girl, let's go!"
Demono spots Redhead and takes aim with his sword: "Quiet, you!"
However, Chris gets up and pushes Demono's arm away, he yells at Redhead while struggling with the beast: "Red, get going! I'll follow you."
Redhead nods and makes his way to entrance of Donnie's. He stops and turns around to see Demono slap Chris back to ground with the back of his hand.
Before Chris can once again get up, Demono holds the tip of the sword to his neck: "Hmm.. It's not often that my prey fights back, however futile it will be."
Chris grins at Demono: "That's right. Yak it up. The badguy always brags the most just before he gets owned!"
Demono tilts his head: "Hmmm?"
Chris: "Didn't you know? The goodguys always win!"
Demono shakes his head in pity: "Clearly you are touched. Destroying you will be doing you a favor."
Demono raises his sword to deliver the killing blow.
Chris raises his chin with confidence while breathing hard: "Any second now. The heroes are going to show up, any second now."
Redhead while still half hidden at the entrance of Donnie's looks around: "Come on, Rangers. This is your cue! You guys are cutting this way too close."
Demono: "Any last words, before I deliver you unto the eternal abyss?"
Chris: "Nope. Just bring that sword on down. The second you do, the Power Rangers are going to show up and kick your a..*"
Chris is cut off with shock as Demono impales him with his sword, right through the heart. Blood drips out of his back and trinkles down Demono's blade onto the asphalt. Chris with the last bit of strength he has, takes ahold of the sword and starts to pull it out of his chest but his life force fades and his body slumps back.
With tears in his eyes, Redhead yells out: "NOOO! CHRIS!!"
Demono looks up and sees Redhead. He pulls his sword out of Chris' dead body and takes aim at the grieving friend. Paige pulls Redhead away from the door just as Demono fires. The energy flies into the entrance and the entire building front blows out.
Demon slings his sword over his shoulder and teleports away in a flash of purple light.
On the other side of Donnie's, Mary waits. The back door busts open and Paige with Redhead slung over her back, stumble out of the burning building. They both fall to their knees in front of Mary.
Paige with nothing but concern on her face, sheepishly asks: "Red. Is Chris.."
Redhead rubs tears from his soot covered faced and nods: "Yes."
Paige begins to cry and Redhead holds her in his arms. Redhead: "Damn them."
Paige: "I know, Red, I know."
Redhead holds Paige tightly as he struggles with a cocktail of emotions: "Damn those Rangers."
Paige's eyes open with surprise and slowly pulls away from Red: "What? What did you just say?"
Redhead's eyes are full of nothing but rage, a look which frightens Paige: "You heard me. Damn those, damned Power Rangers. You saw it, they let Chris die! He was their biggest fan and THEY LET CHRIS DIE!"
Paige slowly shakes her head in disbelief: "The Rangers? Red, they had nothing to do with this. They.."
Redhead pushes Paige away and stands up: "Save it! Chris is dead because he had faith in a bunch of color-coded vigilantes."
Redhead holds his arms up in the air and spins around: "This whole city has been shot to hell because we had faith in those bastards!"
Paige: "Sean, please! You're still in shock. You don't know what you're saying. The Rangers, they'll.."
Redhead shakes his fist: "They'll what? Don't you see? It was all just a game to them. They showed up, had a little fun with these monsters. Showed off their toys and tore up the city in the process. And everyone buys into their crap, thinking they're some kind of saviors. But when these guys got serious, the Rangers are nowhere to be found. Because they never really gave a damn about any of us."
Redhead marches off in a fury: "Let's go. From now on, we're not going to rely on anyone but ourselves."
Paige: "But Red.."
Redhead: "I said, let's go!"
Tears run down, Paige's face and Mary gives her a hug. Paige rubs her new friend's back as she deals with her emotions. Quietly she asks: "Marcus, where are you?"
"Six months, later and the Rangers still haven't shown up. Sometimes, even I start to doubt that they ever will come back."
"But I can't lose hope. Not ever."
"Chris belived in them until the very end."
"I have to keep believing that the Rangers will save us. If nothing else, I need to do so, in order to honor his memory."
"It's really hard sometimes, really hard. I can't help but wonder why exactly Marcus and the others, haven't shown up."
"Most of the time. I just think that maybe they're busy with some evil threat in another galaxy or something."
"What most people don't realize is that the Power Rangers are not exclusive to this world."
"There's like a whole universe out there. And as bad as things are here, as evil as the freaks are here. Deacon Blue isn't the only place where evil beings run around, you know?"
Inside the back room of the spaceship. A figure burrows through the piles of junk he has scattered in the room: "Where is it? Where is it? Curse those Rangers. Dealing with them has me so scatterbrained, I can't even find my own trinkets."
A small portal opens up above the figure and the evil pixie known as Twerp flies in: "Yo! Deviot, you.. geesh! What a dump!"
Deviot pulls himself away from the junk pile with satisfaction: "Ah! Found it at last. And I still have twelve minutes to spare."
Twerp hovers around Deviot's head: "Yo, yo, yo! Watcha got there, Everino?"
Deviot bats Twerp away: "*sigh* I'm in the middle of a business transaction and I have to get back to the Lost Galaxy in a few minutes. So whatever you came here for, just be quick about it."
Twerp: "Whoah! Ease up on the hostilidy didily there. I wouldn't be checking up on you, if you didn't leave your post. The doc said you're supposed to be playing first mate with Captain Mutiny."
Deviot: "I'm well aware of my assignments. Unless, you've forgotten, I'm the compentant one around here. Which is more than I can say for Darkonda."
Twerp: "Well if you know what's up. Then why ain't you in the L.G."
Deviot: "I came across a little free time. We caught the Red and Green Rangers. The good captain wants them to bake in the sun for awhile before he finishes them off. So in the meantime, I'm doing a little business on the side. As long as it doesn't interfere with my assignments, Dr. Hinelar doesn't object."
Twerp: "True dat, true dat. But time works differently in the Lost Galaxy. What happens to be a day there can be either five seconds or five years here!"
Deviot: "You once again underestimate my brilliance."
Deviot pulls out a brown, egg-shaped device with an LED display showing two rows of alien numbers counting down: "I've successful created a handheld clock that can keep track of the time differences here and in the Lost Galaxy. And thanks to you, I'm down to ten minutes, so begone."
Twerp: "Man, hasty, ain't ya! Nice gizmo, by the way. But why ain't I surprised you made it a handheld."
Deviot scoffs at the floating imp: "Hmph! Once again, my incredible creations are unappreciated. Why do I continue to suffer such ignorance?"
Twerp smiles: "Oh, I get it. You're still bitter because the doc rejected your phony Serpenterra."
Deviot: "Bah! It was a masterpiece! Who else but I would take a Berkovan dragon and mechanize it into an exact replica of the most fearsome Zord ever built?"
Twerp sits on Deviot's head and taps his little pitchfork on the mad genius' forehead: "Hello! It was ten times too small! The real Serpenterra was a planet crushing powerhouse. It ate Megazords for breakfast! Your replica looked like it would choke on a motorcycle!"
Deviot grabs Twerp off of his head and hurls him across the room into a pile of circuit boards: "As if anyone else could tell the difference. It was still a waste to have me bury it on Earth's moon. Now for the last time, begone! If you weren't Dr. Hinelar's personal assistant I would have vaporized you three minutes ago!"
Twerp flies out of the pile of circuit boards that he crashed into: "Fine! I know when I'm not wanted. But the next time you decide to get rough with me, just remember I'm the boss' right hand man for a reason!"
Twerp quickly leaves by flying into another of his portals. Deviot takes a sigh of relief and exits the storage room. He then steps outside of the spaceship where his customer awaits.
Deviot: "Ah! There you are, my good sir! I humbly apologize for the wait."
His customer, Zurgane sheathes one of his swords into his left shoulder: "Grr.. If you have made good on your merchandise, I'll forgive you. This one time."
Deviot weasely bows to Zurgane: "Thank you! Thank you! I promise you, your patience is about to be well rewarded."
Zurgane: "Get to it, I don't have all day!"
Deviot pulls out the device he was searching for: "Behold, one of my greatest creations. A fantastic innovation in villainous accessories. I call it, the Personal Alien Manager or PAM for short. All you have to do is upload files of your evil aliens or your space ninjas as you adorably call them. Once you have done that, the PAM will allow you to summon any monster in your army with but a press of the button. You can also make them into giants just in case they run into any.. multi-colored difficulties. The PAM even comes with a foot soldier generator so that you may create an infinite supply."
Zurgane snatches the PAM from Deviot's hands: "Yes! Yes! Yes! I've already seen your presentation. That's why we're interested. As we agreed, five thousand zatars!"
Deviot casually yoinks the PAM away from Zurgane: "Oh dear. I believe there must have been a miscommunication, the retail price was actually fifteen thousand zatars."
Zurgane immediately pulls out his swords from his shoulders and crosses them over Deviot's neck like a scissors: "What?! Why you space trash hustler. You can't con me!"
Deviot: "Oops! Did I say fifteen thousand? I meant to give you and your wonderful up and coming organization, a one time only discount price of ten thousand zatars!"
Zurgane slowly pinches Deviot's neck his swords: "The deal was five thousand!"
Deviot: "Fine, I'll just take my business elsewhere. The emperor of the Troobians has also expressed interest in this wonderful piece of equipment."
Zurgane growls with frustration but caves in, he pulls his swords away from Deviot: "Fine! Ten thousand zatars but not a pruble more!"
Deviot rubs his neck: "Agreed."
Zurgane puts away his swords then snaps his fingers. Two treasure chests appear before Deviot. Zurgane kicks both chests in the back and they pop open, revealing that they are full of gold.
Deviot runs his hands through the gold and has it slip through his fingers, back into the chest: "Excellent."
Zurgane holds out his hand: "Now give me the PAM!"
Deviot happily hands over the device: "Oh, but of course!"
Zurgane inspects the PAM one last time and begins to walk away: "Good. Then our business is complete."
Deviot: "Oh, just one more thing. Are you sure, I can't interest you in the memory upgrade?"
Zurgane: "No thanks."
Deviot: "But you will only be able to make one monster grow at a time without it."
Zurgane: "We've already discussed this. My boss refuses to pay extra for it."
Deviot holds his hands together and bows once again: "Oh well. The customer is always right, I suppose. With both Dark Specter and Scorpius out of commission, the intergalactic underworld has a large void to fill. So I wish you luck on your promising campaign."
Zurgane nods: "Thank you."
With that, he teleports away with Zurgane gone, Deviot speaks out under his breath: "Because with that idiot for a boss, you'll need all the luck you can get!"
"You're making it real hard for me to honor Chris' memory, right now."
"Redhead thought we were in the clear but the other one found us."
"The one that killed Chris."
"Worse yet, he recognized us. These guys are homicidal as it is but when they take your very existence as a personal insult."
"Well it's bad. Like really really bad!"
Those days are over as Paige with Mary and her kitten in tow and Redhead, run for their lives down the pathway. They are hunted by the murderous Demono, who casually strolls down the path behind them, taking random shots at them. Paige and Redhead try their best to avoid the explosions but if it wasn't for the fact that Demono was merely playing with them at this point, they would already be dead.
Redhead trips over a hole in the ground and falls down. Paige sets Mary down and races to help her brother back up, despite his protests.
Paige: "Red! Get up!"
Redhead: "Just leave me! Maybe if I distract him, you and Mary can at least get away."
Paige pulls on Redhead's arm as she desperately tries to get him off the ground: "No way am I leaving you behind. I'd rather we go down together!"
Redhead: "What about Mary, huh? You going to leave her all alone, now?"
Paige is speechless but relunctantly agrees with Redhead's train of thought. She runs back to Mary as Redhead gets back to his feet.
Red puts up his dukes but doesn't believe for a second that he has a chance against Demono: "Let's just get this over with."
Demono charges and punches Redhead in the stomach: "So you're not even going to try anymore? A shame."
Redhead bends over and holds his stomach in pain.
Paige yells out for her brother: "Red!"
Redhead grimaces as he looks over to his sister: "Just go!"
Demono elbows Redhead in the back, slamming him back onto the ground.
Paige pains herself before she finally takes Mary by the hand and starts to run away but the escape is cut short as an explosion erupts in front of the girls.
Devyla appears before them batting her sword in her hand: "Sneaking away when my brother wants to play. How rude!"
Demono nods as he grinds the heel of his boot into Redhead's back: "Indeed."
Paige pushes Mary behind her: "Look. Do whatever you want to me but please, just let her go. She's only a little kid. What harm is she to you?"
Devyla and Demono both break into hysterical laughter. Demono: "It's amazing, isn't it? After all this time, these humans still haven't figured out what we're all about."
Devyla: "It's classic, Demono!"
Devyla in a flash appears directly in front of Paige and then grabs her by the neck. Mary finally drops her cat and the feline runs away. She then pounds on Devyla's thigh. Devyla simply responds by knee kicking the little girl away.
Paige struggles for air but she is outraged anyway: "No! *gasp* Just leave her alone!"
Devyla: "You still don't understand, do you? We don't care about age. We don't care about gender. We don't care about social class, ethnicity or any of the myriad of ways you mice categorize yourselves. We will destroy you, simply because you live."
Paige: *gasp* But why? It's just insanity!"
Demono: "Insanity? Hardly. We are servants of the Endness, the end of all life. By destroying everything, we will eliminate the true insanity of the universe. The chaos that is existence itself."
Paige: "I.. I hate you."
Devyla tosses Paige to the ground: "You shouldn't hate us. Afterall we are only bringing upon the natural order of things."
Demono lifts his foot off of Redhead and kicks him next to Paige: "Everything must come to an end eventually."
Devyla takes ahold of Mary and casually drops her on Paige's lap: "That's just the way the universe works."
Demono summons his sword: "You see, we're just doing the universe's work."
Redhead spits some blood out of his mouth: "Yeah. Well do you guys have to enjoy it so damn much?"
Demono: "Why not?"
Devyla summons her sword: "Yes. What's so wrong about taking pleasure in one's work?"
Demono: "Nothing. That's what. So you have no right, to hate us."
Demono and Devyla lift up their swords in unison and speak together: "But feel free to fear us!"
"My life is about to come to an end and there is nothing I can do about it."
"My brother's life about to come to an end and there's nothing I can do about that."
"Poor Mary. She never even had the chance to get as much out of life as we did."
"And there's nothing I can do about it."
"No! I'm not dead yet. As long as I still breathe, there's still a chance!"
"Anyone's destiny can change in the briefest of moments. Destiny is like, totally fickle like that!"
"As long as I still exist for even less than a second. Something good can still happen. There's still hope!"
"I'll keep my hope even beyond the very moment that I die."
"They could take away Chris' life but they couldn't take that from him!"
"They can take away my life but they won't take away my hope. I won't let them!"
"Dammit! I won't let them take away my hope!"
The evil twins bring their swords down upon Paige, Redhead and Mary.
Demono and Devyla both look behind them and witness in the distance behind the tall buildings on the horizon. Their fellow Omega Beast, Ragno di Morte grows into the size of a giant. The shrouded spider-ninja growls with rage as he holds his chain and sickle overhead.
Demono: "Ragno di Morte has grown into a giant?"
Devyla: "Why would he do that? Unless someone has beaten him at normal size."
Demono scoffs: "Bah! Impossible. Ragno di Morte is weak compared to us but he is still an Omega Beast. No one on this world could stop him."
Devyla: "Well, dear brother. My curiousity is piqued."
Demono nods: "As is mine."
The twins dematerialize their swords and in a flash of purple light they streak over trees and buildings to make their way across town to where Ragno di Morte is at.
Redhead lies motionless with his face covered as does Mary.
Redhead slowly moves his arms away from his face and looks. Much to his surprise, he is still alive. He touches Mary on her shoulder and she too looks up to see that she is also unharmed. Both of them look at Paige who is looking up and breathing hard, she has an expression of cold determination on her face.
Redhead taps Paige's shoulder: "Paige? Sis?"
Paige slowly turns her head to Redhead: "Sean? We're okay, aren't we."
Redhead gives her a small smile and a slight nod: "Yeah. We are. You.. You didn't look away for a second, did you?"
Paige shakes her head.
Redhead hugs his sister: "You never lost hope. You're stronger than me, sis. Much stronger."
Mary joins in on the hug and the trio take a moment just to appreciate that they're still alive. Redhead then ponders: "But why did they just leave us?"
Paige points to the giant Ragno di Morte on the other side of the city: "It's a giant monster, that's why."
Paige holds her hands together as she stands up: "It's a giant monster!"
Redhead raises an eye: "Yeah? Maybe it's all the adrenaline rushing through my system but I swear, you actually sound pleased about this."
Paige's eyes water as she holds her hands together: "There's hasn't been a giant monster in six months. Please let this mean what I think this means."
Redhead: "Paige. What are you going on about?"
Suddenly, a flash of light appears before the giant Ragno. The light takes form and it materializes into a familiar sight.
Paige jumps for joy: "Yes! It's the Guardian Megazord!"
Redhead's jaw drops in disbelief and Mary for the first time shows a hint of happiness in her face.
Redhead stands up: "It's.. It's that robot that always used to show up."
Paige runs away as fast as she can: "It's the Megazord! That means! That means!"
Redhead: "Paige! Wait! Where are you going!"
Paige doesn't listen. She runs out of the park and down the street as fast as she can. The Guardian Megazord and Ragno di Morte are over twenty blocks away but she doesn't care.
Mary runs behind Paige as fast as her little legs will allow her. Redhead just scratches the back of his head: "Why are you so happy? It's just that robot. That robot.."
Redhead's confusion turns to disgust as he looks at the Guardian Megazord again: "It's them. They finally decided to come back. Damn them."
"The Guardian Megazord!"
"That means. It's finally happened!"
"It means Marcus is finally back!"
"It means the Power Rangers are finally back!"
"It's been too long, way too long!"
"It feels like years since I last saw them. Since I last saw Marcus."
"But I don't care because they're back! They're finally back!"
"After all this time, the Power Rangers are finally back! And they'll finally be able to bring this war to end once and for all."