Secrets and Lies Part II:- Dydtrax Chapter 3
POWER RANGERS :- Demon Wars
Secrets and Lies Part II:- Dydtrax
There is a part near the end of this chapter that really deserves the Go Green Ranger theme. I mean that.
Tommy raced back up to the Command Centre, he'd only left for a moment when Alpha called him back. From the sound of things it was an emergency. Bursting through the door of light he was brought to a skidding stop.
Dawn was standing there in shock, looking down at her teammates as Alpha tried to hook them up to some monitors. "What happened?" he gasped, getting a look at the other two.
There was absolutely no colour in their costumes, just a pale featureless grey. It was as if the pigment had just been washed out of them. "It's like Dydtrax sucked the life from them." Dawn whispered, never taking her eyes off them.
"Their life-forces are almost none existent." Alpha announced. "I'm setting up a life-support system to keep them going, but I don't know if it will work." Tommy fought down his feelings. He'd had Rangers in danger before and knew if he let his emotions get the better of him it wouldn't help
Dawn, with tears standing in her eyes, just stood there in shock. "Are you alright?" Tommy asked, concerned almost as much for her as her team.
She shook her head violently. "I just kelt there. I couldn't, I saw her coming and I just sat there next to Faith..."
"I know how you feel." He admitted. "I can't tell you the amount of times I got there that fraction too late, or wasn't fast enough to stop someone from being hurt. I won't lie to you, you'll feel responsible for it. Even more so with hindsight, but you have to believe me, you did everything you could."
Finally she looked at him. "You can't know that." she hissed before turning back to the others. After a deep breath Dawn spoke again, in a tone that sent shivers up Tommy's spine. "Is this what it's like? You spend all your time worrying what might happen and when it comes down to it you freeze?"
"Not always." Tommy said supportingly, but she wasn't listening.
"I used to think it would be cool, when I was a kid you know. Super powers, kicking ass and taking names, how could it not? Then I grew up." Her face was grave. "I found out what it meant to be a hero. It meant sacrifice and I didn't think I could do that."
Tommy knew she was talking about her sister, they'd fought for long enough to know what it meant to sacrifice. "And now your asking why?"
Dawn shook her head "No, I know why. Now. I used to think it was because it was the right thing to do, like they say in the comic books, but it's not. It's not because it's noble, or compassionate, it's not even for popularity. It's because we can't stop." Tommy frowned, not quite understanding what she was saying.
"It's like were addicted, we just keep fighting because we don't know how to stop." Dawn's voice dropped to to a whisper, dripping with self loathing. "We're not the only people in the world, but we pretend it's our job to protect it. All the time finding new and wackier ways to kill ourselves."
Tommy smiled, "It's not like that and you know it. You do it because there is no one else. That's the most important part of being a Ranger, being one of the few that can."
"And then there's the price." Dawn said in that same self-pitying whisper. "We go on living while everyone around us die." Not for the first time Tommy wondered just what Dawn had faced in her young life.
"You don't really believe that, do you?"
"I can't keep paying." Dawn admitted and Tommy spun on her. Just in time to see her strike a pose, crying "Back in action!"
She was going in alone against a demon that had beaten two other Rangers.
Dawn landed back in the City, not far from where Faith and Cassie went down. People were still keeping off the streets, not that Dawn could blame them. It was their job to save the lazy selfish cowards and they had failed.
Dawn was the only one left and she was tired of it. Tara, Anya and even her own mother had paid for her curse. Buffy too and even thought she had come back it was obvious she'd end up the same way. Now Cassie and Faith had paid, it wasn't fair . Cassie didn't deserve it, and neither did Faith. Not now.
Once, it felt like a long time ago now, Dawn had been afraid of Faith and a little sorry for her to. She hadn't forgotten why, but she had forgiven her for it. Both of them had lives to lead and it was because of her they were going to die.
Oh Dr Oliver could pretend that it wasn't, he didn't know the full story. no one in town did, They hadn't even told Faith, to Buffy and the gang it didn't matter. Most of them had forgotten, but she hadn't.
No matter how far she ran it would still be an important part of her, still haunting her. Her curse. The fact she was a Ranger proved it. Now she knew there was only one way out. No one else would have to pay for what the monks had done.
Dydtrax hadn't gone far, probably still gloating. Dawn snarled as she stepped out into the street; "Where'd you go!" the Green Ranger shouted. "Come on Demon, I'm back and I'm waiting!"
"And I thought you ran off to hide!" Dydtrax laughed, coming out from behind a car. The yellow green skinned demoness was smirking. "But I don't see your friends little girl, where are they?"
"You damn well know." Dawn hissed, drawing the Dragon Flute.
Dydtrax threw her head back and laughed; "And you've come alone? Come on then green witch, let's see how long you last."
"Long enough to tear you apart." She shouted and charged, right in to what felt like a brick wall. It picked Dawn up off her feet and threw her back like she was nothing. Rolling back to her feet the Green Ranger charged again, only to be picked up and thrown away again. This time into a car that exploded beneath her.
Both times the demoness hadn't laid a finger on her, she hadn't even gotten close. Dydtrax stood there, smirking while she tossed Dawn helplessly. "That's new." Dawn shouted, tightening her grip on the Flute.
Dydtrax chuckled. "You should have been more careful, because I haven't even started yet." With a flick of her wrist Dydtrax sent another car spinning towards the Ranger.
Leaping out of the way Dawn kicked off from the oncoming car and charged again. She was expecting another car, or something else heavy to come from the side. Instead the very ground rumpled beneath her and bucked. Throwing her feet from under her. Rolling to one side Dawn dug in deep with her Flute, pulling herself forward across a road that rippled like a ocean beneath her.
Fighting the near constant pummelling across her stomach Dawn moved, inch by inch, for the demoness. Ready to rip into the demon bitch with every thing she had. Out of nowhere the ground calmed, leaving her gasping for breath as she tried to stand. Before she could even starry though Dydtrax used her powers on her.
Flinging Dawn into the air the Green Ranger couldn't stop herself from flying into the side of a building. Shattering glass and concrete before being thrown out and into the building opposite. Dydtrax was just too powerful, tossing Dawn about without breaking a sweat.
Grabbing an exposed rebar Dawn held on for dear life, Dydtrax's power pulling her away. With her legs waving in the air the Green Ranger saw a shard of broken glass and had an idea. The demoness could easily throw her around, but what if she could only move one thing at once.
Dawn had left her Flute buried in the blacktop, without that she had to improvise with the glass. Pulling with all her strength Dawn got close enough to pick up the shard. As her grip slipped and the Green Ranger was sent tumbling through the air she threw it.
Either she was lucky or her Ranger powers helped with the aim. Either way she was on target and Dydtrax didn't expect it coming. The sharp piece of glass distracted her long enough for Dawn to crash through the third floor of the building, roll and dive behind a pillar. Hoping against hope that Dydtrax could only move what she could see.
Kneeling in the abandoned offices of some company or another Dawn had time to think. Up until today Dydtrax had been playing with them, letting them get overconfident. That much was obvious. Now she was alone and, unless she could find another handy piece of broken glass, unarmed against a villain that she couldn't get close to.
If she still had her gun it might have been an improvement, but after Tretrax smashed it she'd relied on her Flute. If she had planned to survive this it might have been an idea to have Dr Oliver get her a new one.
A sudden tearing scream drew her attention back to the present. Dydtrax didn't need to see her to throw something. This something was a whole van, tossed through the window and demolishing the whole floor. If it wasn't for her Ranger powers Dawn wouldn't have been able to react nearly as fast. Jumping to her feet Dawn ran out of the building and through another window.
Landing in the street Dawn stood up and found herself next to Dydtrax, for a moment they looked at each other in shock before Dawn tried a sidekick. The demoness jumped back just in time and swiped. The Green Ranger was just fast enough to dodge. For a couple of minutes they danced like that, neither hitting the other as they blocked or dodged each other.
Dawn thought she was keeping Dydtrax off balance, at least enough to stop her using her powers, but she was wrong. In the middle of a punch the demoness flicked her wrist, flinging a lamppost into Dawn. With a contemptuous twist the metal bent around Dawn like a vice, pinning her arms to her side as she was dragged down.
"Finished playing?" Dydtrax laughed as Dawn struggled, then with one armoured boot she forced the Green Ranger down. It wasn't just the psychic power, Dydtrax was now super-strong as well
Crushed underfoot Dawn swore, she wasn't strong enough to fight Dydtrax, but she hadn't been anywhere near this powerful earlier. There was something else happening here. Using her powers Dydtrax pulled Dawn to her knees and laughed, turning a clear crystal that hung around her neck. "It's been fun witch, but now it's time I ended this."
The crystal glowed and in that instant Dawn knew. On the back of the demoness's gauntlet sat a blue sapphire, the same size and shape as the one around her neck. Dawn's eyes flicked to the back of the other hand and saw another one, this one black like onyx. It wasn't Dydtrax's powers she was fighting, it was Faith and Cassie's. Somehow she hadn't just stolen them, Dydtrax was using them.
Then, with horror, Dawn realised just what was happening. It was her turn. Tendrils of green energy snaked out from her costume and into the clear crystal, that began to take on an unhealthy shade. This wasn't death, this was worse.
Dawn had thought, she had hoped, that dying would release her from it. That no one else would be hurt because of her. If Dydtrax stole the Key no one would be free. The demoness wouldn't care what happened them and with that power she would be able to do anything she wanted. No one would be safe, no one.
She couldn't let that happen. Not to anyone, but she couldn't move. It wasn't only the lamppost, whatever magic was stealing her power also froze her in place. Still she knew she had to do something. Almost trembling Dawn tore her gaze from the crystal and focused on the demoness's face. She was laughing, after all she had done the demonic bitch was laughing at her.
That was the final straw, Dawn didn't need a weapon. As soon as she could move the smallest inch she was going to reach down her neck and rip out what passed for her heart. She had never been so angry in her life, all the little cut's and wounds she'd picked up since the monks made her called out for vengeance and she knew what to do with it. Screaming in rage and pain Dawn threw everything she had, all her power and energy and hate, at the crystal. If it wanted her power it was going to get it and then some.
Glaring at Dydtrax Dawn saw her flinch at the scream and then try to pull back, but she was just as frozen. Still Dawn threw her power into the crystal, more and more and she didn't care how much. Then it happened, Dawn felt it more than heard. A crack, somewhere deep inside the crystal grew.
Everything changed. The crystal couldn't take the awesome power Dawn was focusing on it.
Rather than hold back the Green Ranger kept going, she sent everything she had into it and then some. The cracks grew faster and faster. "No!" Dydtrax screamed. "What have you done!"
The crystal broke.
The energy was realised and everything went Green.
Dawn knew she was in the middle of an explosion, but couldn't feel it. There was no heat, just the bright green light that surrounded her and a hollow roaring. She could feel that it was more than just light. It was alive, a part of her. Not just a part but her, it was the Key. For the first time she could feel it, it's energy and scale.
Like flexing a muscle she didn't know she had Dawn tensed. Pulling the Key back inside was like holding her breath under water, every part wanted to be free but she couldn't let it. The energy flowed back into her, but it was still there. Now that she knew about it always would. Ready to be tapped.
It might have been a curse, but it was hers and Dawn knew now she could direct it. Aiming it at whatever got in her way, or tried to hurt someone who didn't deserve it. If this was a curse she was going to bring it down on Dydtrax like a ton of bricks.
The demoness was picking herself up off the ground a couple of hundred yards away. "What… what are you?" she gasped before pulling the crystal from around her neck. It looked like it had frosted over, but it was really covered with thousands of tiny cracks that went deep inside. The tiniest tap might have broken it into a million pieces. "That's, that's impossible." Dydtrax gasped. "What kind of witch are you?" she asked.
"I'm the Green Ranger." Dawn shouted, the Power screaming through her veins. "And you don't know the first thing about me." Shaping the energy, moulding a small part of it, Dawn forged a glowing ball of power in her right hand. Like a pitcher in baseball, running on pure Ranger instinct, she threw it at the stunned Dydtrax.
Her aim was a little of and the explosion detonated behind the demoness. It was enough to almost force them to their feet and more than enough to give Dawn time to turn and grab her Flute.
Dydtrax was either desperate or thought she could do more damage by throwing a fireball at Dawn. Spinning the Flute around and between her fingers Dawn raised it just in time to play it. Strengthening her shield and letting the fireball hit harmlessly.
Reaching out Dydtrax changed tactic back to moving cars with Cassie's stolen powers, only this time Dawn wasn't having any of it. Running her hand over the Flute's blade she charged it and slashed down. A beam of emerald energy scythed through the air, hitting the outstretched gauntlet and the black gemstone mounted on it.
At first the Green Ranger thought she had made a mistake and should have aimed the slice at the other one. Only to smirk in triumph as Dydtrax folded up, clutching her hand. The car fell like a stone before it even had a chance to get moving. She'd destroyed what had taken Faith's powers and it had somehow effected Cassie's.
Before she could reflect on that Dydtrax tried again, but even using two hands could only just raise the same car. Dawn wasn't going to waste the chance and charged. When she was close enough she jumped and spun, it was a flying roundhouse that caught the demoness in the chest. The blow didn't just stagger her, it sent her backwards. Tumbling across the ground, much like Dawn had in the air earlier.
Dawn didn't let up, almost flying after the demoness Dawn brought the Flute down across the sapphire. Just like the other two it broke, all colour vanishing from it in a flash. Cursing loudly Dydtrax backed off, looking desperately for a way out. Dawn didn't give her one.
Without the stolen powers Dydtrax wasn't anywhere near powerful enough to face an angry Green Ranger running on full power. Kicking her swiftly in the head Dawn beat Dydtrax down and kept beating. Braking a horn, busting her nose and splitting a lip. It wasn't until Dydtrax stopped moving Dawn realised what she was doing. She could have destroyed the demoness long ago. Holding herself back the Green Ranger looked down, almost relived to see she was still alive, or close as close too as she could be.
"No, I won't kill you." Dawn stepped back, breathing heavily. "I won't do this." Catching her breath she made a decision. "Go, get out of here and take a message. Tell Tretrax and whatever power he works for that this is it. No matter what they send, who they are, I will stop them. Whatever they want with this City, with this world, I'm willing to do anything to save it. This is all the mercy I have in me. Just get out of here."
Dydtrax looked up, the one eye not swollen shut blinked. "You're letting me live? The worse you could do is kill me…" but Dawn couldn't. It was one thing to destroy the minions, she wasn't sure they were anything other than attack dogs, but Dydtrax was different. She might not have a soul, but she was intelligent. She could still change.
"That wouldn't solve anything." Dawn told her. "This way neither of us lose." If she was half as smart as Dawn hoped it might just be over. She turned to leave when the demoness leapt at her.
Dawn had let her guard down and wasn't ready for it. Dydtrax must have been desperate and more afraid of whoever pulled the strings than her. Rolling away the Green Ranger struggled to push the terrified creature off. Finally finding the right leverage Dawn got a leg between them and pushed Dydtrax off.
A backwards roll later and Dawn was ready. "I'll do it."
"All you can do is kill me." Dydtrax hissed again and clawed herself back to her feet. Dawn knew she could get away from it now. Charging the Flute again Dawn knew what to do, focusing her power she struck. "See yah" She shouted with a sweeping backhand.
For a moment there was nothing but Dawn and Dydtrax, the Flute moving so fast it left a glowing green wake.
Then the moment was gone and the Green Ranger and Demoness had switched places. Standing up straight she sheathed the Flute, behind her Dydtrax exploded in a green fireball. Sighing, Dawn could finally relax.
She might be alone, but she was still the protector of the City and beyond. She owed it to her friends and couldn't let anyone else die because of it.
Dawn almost wasn't surprised when Tretrax blasted her off her feet. The demon general didn't give her chance to recover though. Jumping down from a rooftop he landed, one foot on Dawn's chest. Something inside cracked.
"Thank you, Ranger." He growled. "I was wondering what to do with my 'Dear Sister'." His oversized sword hovered over Dawn's neck. "Now that just leaves you and the Warlord's conquest of this world is assured."
"I think you miss-counted.' Someone else called out and Dawn's jaw dropped. As large as life Faith, in full jet Black Ranger costume, strolled down the street.
Tretrax turned to face the Slayer, sword ready to swing down. "Have to say that's a nice sword," Faith laughed. "But have you seen this? Power Axe!" Out of nowhere the Black Ranger pulled a huge black and gold axe.
She was still too far away, but Faith went on guard with her new weapon. "You think that ridiculous thing could stop me?" He laughed.
"Yep, but it doesn't have to."
"Power Lance!" Cassie cried, after using Faith's distraction to get close. The silver and blue power weapon slashed across Tretrax's face, staggering him. Moving far too quickly the Blue Ranger spun and thrust her Staff between his legs. Twisting and jumping backwards Dawn's roommate got enough leverage to trip Tretrax up and off from Dawn.
"You're alive!" Dawn gasped, "I thought, I thought I was alone."
"When we've finished you'll want to be." Cassie said, kneeling beside her. "Feels like you've got some broken ribs, a bit of a bruising but you'll be fine. After I've had a chance to heal you."
"What about…?" Dawn began to ask, looking at Tretrax as he rose to his feet. Far too close for comfort.
However Faith interrupted, an explosion of black energy caught him in the chest. Staggering the demon general and leaving a massive burn on his leather armour. "Like it, my Power Axe converts into a heavy cannon." the Black Ranger boasted.
Faced with two full powered Rangers, both armed with brand new weapons, and one that could probably still stand at a pinch, Tretrax ran.
Tommy tried to keep from laughing with relief. After Dawn had shattered the crystals Cassie and Faith's powers had snapped back with a vengeance. Before he could blink twice they were back on their feet and watching the Viewing Globe along with him.
Faith's choice of words when she figured out what had happened had made her fellow Ranger blush. The pair of them teleported out when Tretrax made his move.
After he escaped the three girls beamed back to the Command Centre. Faith and Cassie had barely materialised before they stared shouting at Dawn. "What were you thinking?" Faith cried.
"I didn't know she could use your powers." Dawn protested, taking off her helmet and wincing. The brunette had a sheen of sweat and a pained look on her face. Obvious signs of a hard fight. Tommy had watched, helplessly, wondering if that was how Zordon felt all those years ago. Unable to do anything but watch as young people sacrificed themselves for some greater good.
"You didn't have to, that bitch took me and Cass out by touching us. Didn't you even think about that?"
Dawn shied away from answering as Cassie put her fingertips on the side of the Green Rangers ribs. "Oww"
"Shut up you big baby." the Blue Ranger scolded her. "Three broken ribs, two this side. One the other."
"You can tell that just by touch?" Tommy asked.
"Yeah, kinda freaky though. It's like what's wrong just pops into my head." She shrugged then seemed to focus on something.
Dawn suddenly yelped in pain. "What was that?"
"Oh, gotta set the bone." Cassie explained. "I'll try to be more careful."
"Thanks." Dawn hissed with bitter sarcasm.
"You still haven't answered my question." Faith pointed out, sounding more than a little angry.
"I… I guessed you're powers would come back if I defeated her." She lied, not too convincingly. From the look Faith gave her she wasn't believing it any more than Tommy was. "I didn't know how long Alpha's life support thing would last and thought it was your only chance. Yahhh!"
"Oh sorry." Cassie said sarcastically. "My bad."
"You did that deliberately."
Smiling Tommy backed off. He was supposed to be the mentor, guiding them. He wasn't one of the team, he was support. That's how it had to be. Besides he had other things on the mind, he'd seen what happened when Dydtrax had tried to take Dawn's powers.
This wasn't the first time Rangers had their Powers stolen, but it was the first time the Power had ever overloaded like that. Then there was the energy orb she had thrown. Back when he was under Rita's spell Tommy could summon them too, that was when he had access to her magical reserves. That meant whatever was powering her coin was not only awesome but clearly magical in nature.
Usually when he needed answers he had them, or could find them when he knew what questions to ask. Right now he didn't even have that. Wishing for Zordon wasn't going to help and if tommy was going to find anything out he was going to have to start with the next best thing. Tommy was going to have to look for his archives.
End Secrets and Lies Part II