#14 - "Orion Under Glass," or "Andresia? I Hardly Know Ya!" (Originally Written In: 2017)|
[ Song du Jour | Close ]
On a distant planet, we see a young couple working on rebuilding a house that was leveled by a previous attack. The young man was pounding nails into some wall material when he smashed his thumb. "Ow! Son of a--"
"Orion!" His female companion shouted. "Language!"
"I'm sorry," Orion replied, "but it REALLY hurt!"
"I'll bet it did," she spoke, handing him an ice pack. "Here. This should help to dull the pain. Want a Tylenol, too?"
"Thanks, but I'll pass. I don't know how your Earth medications work, Gia." Orion took the ice pack and wrapped it around his thumb.
"It's just a pain killer, but, if you think that you can handle the pain..." Gia put the bottle of pills back into her bag. She looked at the wall. "It's coming along nicely!"
"Well, when you've had to be on your own for years, you tend to pick up on a few things," Orion commented. "Thanks again for coming to Andresia with me to help!"
"Are you kidding? I couldn't pass up the opportunity to help rebuild your civilization, and give these houses the special 'Gia Moran Touch.' Besides," she said, getting close to Orion, "there's always a chance that... You know..."
He looked at her, confused. "That, what? We could get attacked again?" He set down the ice pack, picked up the hammer, and held onto the nail from before. "Not really an optimist, are you?"
"No, silly!" She got up close and whispered into his ear. -"You know what I mean..."- She backed up and smirked.
"No, I really don't. I--" Suddenly, it hit him. "Oh!" He smirked. "Gia, you naughty girl!"
"Well, you know what they say: Blondes do like to have fun!"
"We can have fun later. Right now, we need to get this house finished."
Gia pretended to pout. "Fine."
Xityrant's ship approached the planet. "Sir, the preparations are ready to begin the assault," Entoborg spoke, walking back onto the bridge.
"Excellent! We're close enough. Send down the Spectres as a warning, but not too many. I don't want to exhaust our resources right away."
"Yes, sir," Entoborg replied, turning around and making his way out of the room.
Xityrant turned toward his monitors, which showed Orion and Gia working on the house. "Soon, you will be mine... And, your little girlfriend, too."
A small squadron of Spectres materialized outside of Orion's house. They walked up to the door and kicked it down, surprising Gia, who was hanging pictures in the entryway. "Whoa! What are you creeps?" The Spectres entered the house with their sabers drawn. Without responding, one grabbed Gia, who instinctively flipped him over her shoulder to the ground behind her. She turned toward the others. "Anybody wanna run for it? Now's the time!"
-"Gia, I thought I heard something. What--?"- Orion stopped on the stairs when he saw the Spectres surrounding Gia. "What are those things?"
"I don't know, but I think we'd better show them what they're up against. You got your morpher handy?"
Orion pulled it out of his pocket. "I never leave home without it! What about you?"
"Without the Ranger Keys, I just have my Megaforce powers, but that should be enough. Let's do it!" Gia pulled out her Gosei Morpher and turned her belt around, revealing her card holder. "It's Morphin Time!" Gia opened up the mouth of her morpher, and its eyes turned red. She flipped open the card holder, pulling out her Gosei Yellow card and inserting it into the mouth of the device. "Go, Go, Megaforce!" She closed the 'mouth' of the device, triggering the morphing sequence. A pocket of yellow energy enveloped the area surrounding Gia, shifting her into a small dimension. Her clothes shattered away, revealing her Megaforce Yellow uniform. "Megaforce..." She did a backflip through the air, landing a few yards back with her face down. She looked up, and the Yellow Ranger helmet formed around her head. "...Yellow!" The pocket of energy dissolved, revealing the Yellow Ranger.
"It's Morphin Time!" Orion pulled out his Silver Ranger key and opened the morpher, inserting it into its appropriate space. He closed it up, triggering the morphing sequence. "Go, Go, Super Megaforce!" He thrust the morpher forward. "HA!" The morpher started to glow, enveloping Orion in a pocket dimension. His clothes shattered away, revealing his Super Megaforce Silver uniform. "Super Megaforce..." He did a backflip through the air, landing a few yards back with his face down. He looked up, and his Silver Ranger helmet formed around his head. "...Silver!" His trident fell from above, and he caught it with a swift grab. The pocket of energy dissolved, revealing the Silver Ranger. "Let's take this outside!" Orion flipped over the banister, landing behind Gia. "Come on!" He ran toward the back door, and out into the backyard.
"Right behind you! C'mon, you creeps!" She ran after Orion, with the Spectres in tow. Once outside, Gia summoned her Tiger Claw weapon by pulling her Landick Claw card out of her belt buckle and inserting it into her morpher. It materialized in front of her, and she grabbed onto it. She swung at the Spectres, striking a couple and only slightly stunning them. "What ARE these things? They're almost as strong as the X-Borgs!" She tried stabbing at them, but it was proving to be futile. "Forget this. I'll do it the beta way!" She managed to get away from the Spectres, removed the Landick Claw card from her morpher - causing her Tiger Claw weapon to disappear - and put it back in her buckle. She pulled out the Tiger Headder card and inserted that into her morpher, summoning the Tiger Zord Headder, which expanded into her sidearm weapon. She grabbed it out of the air and started firing at the Spectres, which was ultimately more effective. "Momma can get used to this! Come at me, punks!"
Meanwhile, Orion was caught up in a larger squadron of Spectres, who were an even match for his Super Silver Spear. He got down and swung it near their feet, knocking a few of them to the ground, causing somewhat of a domino effect with those that were behind them. "Heh, this is a cakewalk!" He brushed off his shoulder, indicating that this was a breeze. As he did, a Spectre was sneaking up behind him.
"Orion! Look out!" Gia shouted, shooting at the Spectre and stopping it in its tracks.
He turned around just as the blast impacted the grunt. "Thanks, Gia!"
"Let's finish these things off before they damage the house!"
"I'm with you!"
Xityrant was watching the battle unfold. He slammed his fist down on his chair. "No!" He shouted. "They're not supposed to be WINNING!" He pressed the intercom button. "Entoborg! Begin the assault with our new fighters!"
-"Sir, should I send down all of them at once, or one at a time?"-
"One at a time, but not too far apart."
Xityrant watched the first monster make his way to the surface of the planet below. "You're in for it now, Rangers..."
Gia and Orion had gained the upper hand in the fight against the Spectres, who were now reduced in number from before. "We just have these couple left, Orion, and we'll be done with them," Gia spoke. "You ready to do this?"
Orion cracked his knuckles. "We've got this in the bag."
Just then, the first of Xityrant's new monsters appeared between the Rangers and the Spectres. This creature, gray in color with mauve and green accents, had a metallic appearance, indicative of armor. "I am Decaynaut, and I'm your worst nightmare!"
"I've had my entire planet wiped out by creatures like you," Orion boasted. "It doesn't get much worse than that!"
"You're far from my worst nightmare, ugly," Gia spoke. "Jake showing up at my house with a wedding ring? THAT'S my worst nightmare!"
"I thought you two were practically married already," Orion commented.
"I mean, he's okay, but I don't think he's husband material..."
"Excuse me? I'd like to destroy you now," Decaynaut interrupted. He clenched his right fist, charging up his attack. After it was charged, he shouted, "Heavenly Molten Eraser!" He shot a fiery blast at the two Rangers, striking them directly and sending them flying back.
Orion and Gia yelled as they flew back, landing in the arms of the Spectres. They came to and noticed their captors. The two of them struggled to get free, but were unable to. "Let me go!" Gia exclaimed.
"Aw, if only you could reach your blaster," Orion commented.
"Yeah, no kidding."
"Ready for more?" Decaynaut asked.
"No," the two Rangers said in unison.
"Too bad." Decaynaut charged up another attack. This time, he aimed squarely at Orion. "Heavenly Molten Eraser!" He fired the blast directly at Orion, sending him - and the Spectres that were restraining him - flying toward the back wall of the yard. The Spectres disappeared, and Orion demorphed.
"Orion!" Gia screamed, struggling to get free. "No!" Just then, a second monster appeared in front of her. This monster - an amphibious-looking robot witht he same general colorings as Decaynaut - got right up in Gia's face. "Who are you?"
"I am Expulsar," he said, drawing out the 'S' sound in his name, "and I am part of the team that will capture Orion and take him back to our leader!"
"Do you think it's going to be that easy?" Gia asked. "We did defeat Prince Vekar of the Armada, you know!"
Expulsar laughed. "That pathetic weakling? He's NOTHING compared to our combined strength!"
"Don't waste your time on her, Expulsar," Decaynaut spoke, approaching him. "It's the Silver one that we really want."
"Right." Expulsar turned toward Orion, who was lying on the ground, unconscious. He summoned a crossbow-styled weapon, colored similarly to his own body. He drew back the line, and an energy arrow materialized. "Tender Harpoon!" He fired, striking Orion and surrounding him in an energy field. Expulsar withdrew his weapon and grabbed onto the energy line that was hovering in the air between him and Orion. "Get over here!" He shouted, pulling Orion toward him and holding onto him. "I've got what we came for. The others will be here to finish you off, girly. Until we meet again...!" Expulsar teleported away, taking Orion with him.
"No!" Gia shouted. "Bring him back!" She finally broke free and grabbed her discarded blaster. In a rage, she shot at all of the Spectres, destroying them. She turned her attention to Decaynaut. "You're next."
-"I don't think so!"- A female voice boomed from behind Gia. She turned around and came face-to-face with a third monster. This one - a robot that was pink and gold in color - was called Seismodeluder. She punched Gia, knocking her into the arms of a fourth monster, a blue, purple, and silver-colored creature named Tracksaurian. "We're going to finish you, so that Master Xityrant's plan will succeed!"
"Xityrant?" Gia asked, struggling to get free. "Who's he?"
"He will soon be the ruler of the entire universe, and your friend will be his key to doing so!" Tracksaurian boasted. "We have one final trick for you!" He let Gia go and quickly teleported to stand next to Seismodeluder. He raised his arms to the sky. "Midnight Eclipse!" Energy flew from his hands and created a dome of darkness, surrounding the two of them and Gia. Outside of the dome, it was as clear and as sunny as could be. Inside the dome, it was completely dark. "How's this, Yellow?"
"I can't see a thing!" Gia yelled.
"Good! In that case, you won't see this coming!" Seismodeluder leapt into the air. "Tremor Restoration!" She slammed down into the ground, causing an earthquake that created a hole that Gia fell into. The monster got up. "It all worked, according to the plan."
"Let's get out of here." Tracksaurian and Seismodeluder teleported away, followed shortly thereafter by Decaynaut.
Meanwhile, a demorphed Gia laid at the bottom of the chasm, with her morpher a good distance away. She coughed, indicating that she was still alive.
Up on Xityrant's ship, the four monsters stood outside of one of the prison cells, which now housed Orion. Expulsar was holding his morpher and the Silver Ranger key. Orion slowly came to, quickly realizing where he was. He stood up and ran to the door of the cell, grabbing onto the bars and getting a shock. He shouted in pain and quickly let go of the bars, blowing on his hands to try and relieve the pain. "Where am I?"
"You, dear boy, are in a cell aboard the ship of the mighty Xityrant," Seismodeluder explained, "and, he has big plans for you!"
"For me? What plans?"
"Oh, you'll find out soon enough," Tracksaurian spoke. "Come, friends. Let's leave this boy to get settled into his new home!" The four monsters laughed as they walked out of the prison area.
"Entoborg," Xityrant said, "set a course back to Mirinoi. By the time we get there, my plan should be ready to go."
"Yes, sir," Entoborg replied, turning around and leaving the bridge. As he left, a fifth monster - a blue-and-gray creature called Lithosound - walked in. "Master Xityrant, the other monsters have secured the prisoner in the containment cell."
Xityrant turned around in his chair. "And, the girl? Where is she?"
"They left her for dead on the planet's surface. Between Seismodeluder's chasm and Tracksaurian's darkness spell, they soundly defeated her with no problem."
"Hmm... I don't like leaving any potential problems behind. You're sure that she's been soundly defeated?"
"That's what the others report."
"And, she has no way to follow us?"
"I did not go down to the surface, sir, so I cannot say with certainty whether or not that is true."
He shrugged. "It shouldn't make that much of a difference. Once my plan is complete, even his little girlfriend won't be able to save him. Take him to the Re-Education Area and begin his reprogramming, at once. He must be ready to go by the time we get back to Mirinoi."
Lithosound saluted. "Yes, sir!"
Back on Andresia, Gia slowly regained consciousness. She stood up, realizing that she was about fifty feet below the surface. "Hello?!" She screamed. "Oh, right, the Andresians haven't come back yet." She started to walk around the hole. "That's just great. You're stuck down here, and those creeps captured the only person that could help you. Way to go, Gia. 'Oh, Orion, I'd love to go to Andresia and help you rebuild!' What was I thinking?" She stopped walking, as if something clicked in her brain. "Wait a minute. Why am I giving up? Surely, one of Gosei's Power Cards has something to help me get out of a chasm." She took out her Gosei Morpher and inserted the Gosei Yellow card, transforming into the Yellow Ranger. She flipped open her belt buckle and pulled out all of the cards, looking for one that resembled a rope. "No... No... No..." She stopped at a peculiar looking card. "'Pleasurable Impulse'? I might need to save this one for later..." She went back to looking through the rest of the cards.
Lithosound walked into the prison area and made his way to Orion's cell. "Prisoner!"
"Yeah? What do you want?"
"Master Xityrant has a special surprise for you. First, however, *I* have a special surprise for you." He held out his arms. "Orchestral Domination!" Sonic pulses began to emanate from his antennae. The intensity of the sound made Orion cover his ears.
"Aah!" He screamed. "It's so loud! Make it stop!"
"No way!" Lithosound phased through the door of the cell and, while Orion was distracted, cuffed his arms and legs, along with enough chain left to drag him along. He phased back out of the cell and opened the door, grabbing onto the chain and pulling Orion along. "Come on, prisoner!"
"If I come along willingly, will you stop with the noise?"
"Fine, then I'll go." Lithosound stopped the sound. Orion shook his head. "Now, I've got a splitting headache!"
"That's not all you're going to have. Come on." Lithosound dragged Orion out of the prison area. The two made their way to a nearby room, which contained only one chair and a video wall. Lithosound sat Orion in the chair and fastened his restraints to the arms and legs of the chair. Once he was secure, Lithosound made his way to the back of the room and pressed a button on the wall, which started a propaganda video about how great Xityrant is, and how evil the Power Rangers are.
"What is this? Some weird brainwashing video? Do you think I'm stupid enough to fall for this?"
"Maybe not right away, but this is all you're going to be watching for the next several hours!" Lithosound laughed evilly. "Sayonara, prisoner!" He teleported out of the room.
Orion watched the screen, and couldn't help but mock it. "Yeah, right, like Xityrant really built those houses for the homeless aliens."
Gia continued to look through her cards. "'Life Fact'? That doesn't even make sense. 'Hot and Spicy'? What would that even be used for?" She held up a card. "'Escape Rope.' Found it!" She inserted it into her morpher, creating a grappling hook attached to a rather long rope. She put the hook into her Mega Blaster and fired it toward the light, hoping that it would grab onto something once it made it to the top of the hole. She heard it latch, and started her climb out. "Why couldn't Gosei give me a teleportation card? That would make this SO much easier..."
-"Xityrant is the most charitable boss I've ever had the pleasure to work for,"- Clerica spoke, in the video. -"He tries to do such wonderful things for humanity on whatever planet he visits, but there's usually a group of nasty Power Rangers that stand in his way."-
"Oh, yeah, right. Is this supposed to be making me stupid? Guess what? It's not! I could mock this all day!"
"This is more of a workout than I planned on doing today," Gia said, climbing up the wall toward freedom. "I just hope that nothing's waiting for me on the surface once I get there..."
The video suddenly shifted to a swirling, hypnotic pattern. A monotone voice boomed, -"Xityrant, good. TQG, bad."- That quote played on a loop, as Orion struggled to get free.
"I've had enough! Let me out!"
-"Xityrant, good. TQG, bad. ... Xityrant, good. TQG, bad."-
Gia made her way to the top of the hole and climbed out of it. She looked around. "At least, they didn't wreck the place. Now, I know that Orion has that old Armada ship somewhere. Where did he leave it? -- Oh, right! It's at the old Airport!"
-"Xityrant, good. TQG, bad."-
"Xityrant, good. TQG, bad," Orion repeated. His eyes were glazed over, and any impulse he had to fight this was gone. His voice was now as monotonous as the recording's.
-"Xityrant, good. ..."-
"... TQG, bad."
Gia ran toward the Airport, and she could see Orion's aircraft by one of the hangars. She made it to the facility, and quickly scaled the fence to get in. She ran toward Orion's aircraft and got inside. She looked at the myriad of controls. "Okay, Gia, you can do this. You've piloted many of Gosei's Zords, so this should be a breeze." She scanned them, trying to find something that resembled a 'start' button. "What would Noah do in this situation?"
-"Just press buttons until something works,"- Noah spoke in her mind.
"Gee, thanks." Gia looked at the controls once more, hoping SOMETHING would jump out at her. Finally, she remembered which buttons Orion pressed to start it. She pressed a series of buttons, and the ship lit up. Its engines roared alive, and Gia cheered. "I got it!" She grabbed the control handles. "Okay, Orion, hold on! Momma's coming!"
The ship lifted off from the Airport and headed in Xityrant's direction.
Lithosound walked into the room. "So, how's it going?"
"Xityrant, good. TQG, bad."
Xityrant walked in. "I wanted to make sure that you were successful." He turned Orion's chair around. "Well?"
"Xityrant, good. TQG, bad."
"He's brainwashed, alright, but this will definitely arouse suspicion. Maybe one of your lighter sonic pulse things will snap him out of this trance, but still keep in mind that I'm good and those Rangers are evil."
"You got it." Lithosound sent a differently-pitched sonic wave toward Orion, which snapped him out of the trance.
Expulsar walked into the room, holding Orion's morpher. "I believe you dropped these." He handed the devices to Orion.
"Whoa," he replied, holding his head. "What happened to me?"
"Those evil TQG henchmen tried to destroy you, but we saved you and brought you back here," Expulsar explained, lying on the spot. "Good thing, too, because if they got a hold of your technology, it could have been the end of our world!"
"Really...?" Orion looked at his morpher and his Ranger Key. "TQG wanted these?"
"Oh, yeah! That's why you need to even the score by getting your hands on something of theirs," Xityrant replied. "If we can get access to their newest secret weapon, then we can use it against them and put an end to them before they can destroy our world!"
"I don't know, I--" The brainwashing kicked in. "You know what? Yeah, count me in! Let's take them down! ... How am I going to do that?"
"I'm going to return to my home," Expulsar mused, "and, when TQG shows up, you can step in and tell me to come back here first. That way, they'll think that you're on their side and invite you back to their compound, where you can befriend them and get access to their latest secret weapon."
"That makes sense... I think."
"Just trust us," Xityrant spoke, walking toward Orion and putting a hand on his shoulder. "Would we steer you wrong?"
Orion looked down at it, then shifted his gaze to Xityrant. "I guess not..."
At that moment, Seismodeluder ran in. "Sir, our sensors have detected another alien presence on Mirinoi." She got close to him and whispered, -"Apparently, he's been attacking the Rangers in your absence. There's archival footage of his failures to defeat them from your remote cameras."-
"Hm... Thank you. You're dismissed." He waved his hand, and Seismodeluder left. Xityrant smirked. "Say, Orion, I've just received some rather devastating news." He walked back toward Lithosound and Expulsar.
"It turns out that those villainous TQG henchmen have a new recruit, and he's helping TQG destroy our home world. You know what it's like to have your home world ripped away from you, don't you?"
"Andresia..." Orion clenched his fists.
"Help us defeat TQG and save our planet. If you help us, then we'll allow the refugees from your world to live among us. What do you say?"
"If it will help my people to have a place to live, then I'll do it. Those TQG bozos are done for!"
"That's wonderful to hear! If you'll excuse us, we're almost to our planet. We'll leave you here to practice your fighting moves." He motioned toward the door. "Come, everyone." Xityrant walked out of the room, followed by Lithosound and Expulsar.
"I won't let you destroy a perfectly good world, TQG. I'll stop you, even if it's the last thing I do." He transformed into the Silver Ranger and started to practice his fighting moves.
Meanwhile, Gia was hot on his trail. "I sure am glad that I talked Orion into putting an auto-pilot feature on this thing. It's so much more complicated than any of Gosei's Zords! I just hope that I can rescue him before those villains get into his head."
To Be Continued!