The Wider World Part III:- Nightmares Chapter One
POWER RANGERS :- Demon Wars
The Wider World Part III:- Nightmares
Dawn couldn't tear her eyes from the window, she'd never seen so many stars and they'd never been so bright. "We're on a spaceship." Sari told them. Dawn just looked out at the view. To think there were so many, scattered across the sky like chips of sparkling ice on velvet. It was no wonder some people spent their entire lifetimes looking up at the sky. Dawn could have stood there forever, just watching infinity pass before her. The possibilities, hopes, dreams and even nightmares in that endless sparkling night…
"Sorry, just having an Andrew moment." Dawn turned away from the view. "What did you say?"
"She said that we're on a spaceship." Faith told her in a stunned voice. "Which is kinda cool."
"Yeah, cool." Cassie muttered. She sounded odd, almost worried about something.
Before Dawn could ask her about it a door on the other side slid open and Dr Jackson came in. The only thing that stopped Dawn's jaw falling through the floor was her helmet. Just behind Cassie's Uncle was the big African Teal'c, a pretty woman with raven black hair and another man that looked a lot like Dr Jackson but just screamed military.
The four of them were all wearing some sort of casual uniform, blue jackets and pants with a black tee underneath. Their uniforms, the dull grey of the walls and just about everything spoke louder than words that these guys worked for the armed forces. It was all Dawn could do not to turn on her roommate for an explanation.
"Well you're up Daniel." The woman said, a dangerous glint in her eye.
He shot her the sort of look that was part warning, part acceptance. Dawn had a feeling that wasn't the first time she'd teased him and it wasn't going to be the last. Still it wasn't that bad and they'd make a cute couple at the end of it. "Hello, I'm Dr Daniel Jackson. This is Colonel Cameron Mitchell, of the US air force. Teal'c of the Free Jaffa Nation and Vala Mal Doran."
Carefully Dawn looked around at her fellow Rangers, trying not to stare at Cassie along the way. What worried her was that they were all looking at her, expectantly.
Daniel watched the Rangers, they were obviously uncomfortable. Like they didn't know what to say. Not the sort of attitude he'd expected from Ancients, in fact they weren't anything like what he expected. He was suddenly struck by the idea that they were a lot younger than he first thought. "Urm, I hate to ask this, but before we get down to things which one of you is the leader?"
After another long look at each other the Green one stepped up. "We don't have a leader, we're a team." However as she spoke the other three shrugged all and pointed at her.
"Right, I see." He said diplomatically. "Well we'd better all sit down. I'm sure you'd like to as us some questions…"
"Like where you got this ship from?" the Black Ranger said. "How you got us up here and why?"
"Indeed." Teal'c pointed out.
"Well, where to start?" Daniel sighed. It was a long story, but they had a right to know. "In the nineteen twenties we found the Stargate, but it wasn't until the late nineties that we figured out how it worked."
"By we, he means him." the Colonel interrupted.
"Yes, well, that's not important. What is important is that for the last ten years we've been using the Stargate. Traveling to other worlds. We've made friends with the Asguard, the Nox and a few others." Daniel explained. "We've also defeated the Goa'uld and the Ori."
"Very good. You all get gold stars." Black Ranger said with savage sarcasm. "Now pretend…" she stopped mid sentence and shot the Green Ranger a look. If Daniel didn't know better he'd say she'd kicked her under the table.
"That sounds impressive." The Green Ranger said carefully then sat back. "How did you do it?"
Daniel looked at her, a sudden sinking feeling coming to him. She didn't have a clue what he was talking about and was trying to bluff. She wasn't that good, but that didn't matter. They'd already made the mistake, they'd assumed.
Daniel knew the Rangers would need an immense amount of technical knowledge to build their fighting machines, then there was the powers the Blue Ranger had demonstrated. Powers that some other races had shown, not just the Ancients, but they had ignored that. Instead of taking his time he and Jack had just jumped on the first explanation they had.
"You're not Ancients, are you." Cameron asked, his tone telling Daniel he'd had the same thought.
"No, we're not." The Green Ranger admitted. "What made you think we were?"
She was still fishing again, he could tell she wasn't going to give up until she had answers. This was why the others had let her take point. Cameron though, wasn't taking the bait. "Alright if you're not Ancients who are you and how did you do that healing thing?"
"You're not used to the whole kidnapping thing are you?" She laughed back. "You kidnaped us, so you're the ones that get to explain your dastardly plan." The Green Ranger waved her hand at them.
"Dastardly plan?" Vala asked "We're the good guys here!"
"So are we." the Yellow Ranger pointed out, "And you beamed us up."
Daniel winced. "We needed to talk to you and… And we couldn't think of any other way."
"Never heard of E-mail?" Black snorted
Green ignored her friend and shrugged, "Look, I think it's obvious this isn't how you wanted it to go so here's the deal. You grabbed us for something, tell us what it is and then give us a moment to talk it over."
"Alright, all our cards on the table. Good idea." Cameron nodded "As you can see we've got the equipment and we've got the experience in saving the planet."
"Some more than others." Vala announced looking pointedly at Daniel and Teal'c.
Cameron agreed quickly. "These two have done it at least ten times alone. My point is there's just the four of you, we can help. If you'll let us."
"We have resources you might need." Daniel explained. "Supplies, contacts, even other allies. You are not alone in this."
"What do you get out of it?" The Black Ranger asked.
Daniel tried to meet her eyes, but her tinted visor got in the way. "It's our world too.'
"How do we know that?'
"Black." Green put a restraining hand on her friend's shoulder. "We don't have to do this. Not here." She turned back to Daniel. "Can we have a moment?"
Dawn watched as the four of them left the room, before Faith could say anything she held a hand up. "Anyone else think we're being watched?"
Sari nodded and pointed at the corner. There was a small camera there, a little red light flashing on it. "I'll ask it not to look." the newest Ranger said cryptically. The light flickered for a moment, but kept going. "Well that was rude." Sari huffed. The whole camera exploded from the wall, domed glass shattering.
"What did you do?" Cassie asked, just as shocked as the rest of them.
Sari shrugged. "I have this way with computers and the like. I can usually get them to do what I want, if I ask nicely. But that one was rude. I guess with all the security stuff it was being a jerk. If it didn't want to play nice neither was I."
"Could you do that with any computer?" Dawn asked, curious.
"I don't know, maybe." she shrugged again.
Faith, though, was getting inpatient. "That's cool and all, but let's get back to the whole Blue's family have a giant ass spaceship. What is going on?"
"I… I couldn't tell anyone." Cassie said, her voice almost breaking. "Dawn, when I told you I was an orphan I left some things out."
"Really, I would never have guessed." Faith hissed.
"Not. The. Time." Dawn ground out, trying to keep her temper.
Faith spun on her. "Stop saying that. Who knows what else she hasn't told us!"
"She does." Dawn almost shouted back. "We all agreed that we had secrets and that it didn't matter. Dr Oliver was worried that might be a problem and he was right. Still I don't care, now do you want to keep this up or do you want me to start talking." Faith took a step back as Dawn made her point. "I haven't forgotten Faith, just forgiven."
"What's she talking about?" Sari asked Cassie.
"I don't know." The Blue Ranger answered. "I don't think I want to."
Dawn glared at Faith for a moment longer. "You do have a point though. Secrets are fine right until they beam us out of an ass kicking. Spill Cass."
Dawn's roommate visibly winced. "Well, my village was destroyed by a plague and Uncle Daniel and the team found me. What I left out was that my village was attacked, deliberately and that it wasn't on Earth."
"Pardon?" Dawn gaped
"I thought you were human?"
"Earth isn't the only place you get humans you know. There's like thousands of planets out there with people."
Sari seemed the most okay with that. "Cool. Wait a second, how can there be humans that don't come from Earth."
"Well we do, sort of." Cassie explained. "Long time ago a race came to Earth, they weren't human. This race pretended they were Gods and took people like mine as slaves. Some, like mine, were abandoned. Forgotten about and left to fend for themselves." Dawn felt a raising hatred for these so called Gods. "Teal'c was one of their solders, called Jaffa. They were parasites, they crawl inside your head and take control. But what they did to the Jaffa was worse, they twisted them. Turned them into incubators for their young, if they were ever removed the Jaffa would die. Forcing them into slavery, fighting petty wars for power, land, even because they felt like it."
"What happened to your village?" Faith asked, sounding a little less hostile. "I mean you survived." Then again.
"Our God was Nirrti…"
"The hindu God of death?" Dawn hissed.
Sari gasped "That sounds cute and fluffy."
Cassie shook her head. "She was anything but. Nirrti was experimenting on us, trying to produce the ultimate evolved human to use as a host. When Daniel and the gang turned up she panicked, spreading her plague to wipe us out. I was left as a booby trap."
"Huh?" Dawn asked.
"She did something to me, put a bomb in side my chest that could destroy most of the continent. If it had gone off in the right place."
"How old were you?" Faith asked, now sounding genuinely concerned.
"About six, closer to seven really. They found out about it and stopped it from going off. It's gone now."
"Okay, when we've delta with this demon invasion thing I'm going to hunt down every last one of these God things and don't you try and stop me." Faith pointed at Dawn.
"I was going to help." It was a lot to take on board. She'd accepted the idea of aliens, spending any amount of time with Andrew kinda forced you to. That boy could spend all day talking, none stop, about the subject. But the idea that they weren't only around, but had been on Earth and invaded before.
"I guess Oliver was right, never a dull day when you're a Ranger!" Faith joked in the following silence. "So, we trust these guys?"
"Look, if either of you still trust me, even a little, they're on our side. I swear."
"It's okay Cassie," Dawn put a hand on her friends shoulder. "That was never in question. Was it?" she asked Faith pointedly.
"No, it wasn't." She admitted. "But I ain't going to hug you."
Cassie laughed at that, so did Dawn. The incident wasn't smoothed over, but things were better. "What do you say about the team?"
"I honestly don't know." Dawn admitted. "On one hand they sound like the sort we'd want as friends. On the other I don't know if there's anything they can do."
"They have got a spaceship." Sari pointed out.
"Which is cool and all, but I know where she's coming from." Faith spoke up. "You're thinking about Buffy aren't you."
"Yeah." Dawn nodded. "Look we just got our butt's kicked, but we survived. What would happen if they went down?"
"They'd shoot them, wouldn't they?" Cassie suggested
"Bullets don't do much to demons." Faith told them. "Even if they have cool ray guns we're armoured, they're not. It would be like bringing Buffy and the other Slayers in. They've goy the skills and experience, but not the gear."
"While these guys have the gear but none of the skills." Sari seemed to deflate. "It would be like back home. We had armies like here, we lasted three months."
"So it doesn't matter if we trust them or not." Dawn saw where this was going. "Still our fight, not theirs."
"Doesn't mean they can't help." Cassie pointed out.
"She's right." Faith agreed.
Dawn thought about it for a moment. "She is. Still doesn't answer how they can help."
There was a knock on the door.
"Great, they've figured out we took out the camera." Faith hissed.
"Then it's time we get out of here." Dawn shrugged.
"I'll call a cab." Faith said sarcastically.
Dawn laughed; "They're not the only ones that can teleport, remember."
Faith turned to Cassie. "We're idiots."
"I guess that's why you're the leader."
"Sari, I'm not the leader." Dawn insisted. "We're a team. Now lets get out of here."
Daniel finally opened the door and blinked. The room was empty. "Interesting." Teal'c announced. "They did not leave via the door."
"I got that." Daniel shook his head. "They probably left as soon as they were alone. I knew the Green one was too calm."
"She probably figured it out as soon as she got here." Vala said walking in. "You know, I really don't think you're that good with women Daniel. We all ways seem to get the better of you."
He shot her a withering look. While she was talking Teal'c had crossed the room. "I believe I know why the security camera failed to operate." He announced as he picked up the pieces. "It appears to have exploded."
"A girls gotta have some secrets." Vala laughed. "You've been had. We picked them up and got nothing for it, while they learnt everything they needed to know."
Daniel winced, she was right. They still knew next to nothing about the Rangers and had just shown their hand. "Jack's going to love this."
Tommy took a breath and looked to Cassie. "I already knew about humans on other worlds. The Red Space Ranger came from a colony on KM-35. But I've never heard of these Goa'uld."
"I've never heard of KM-35." Cassie pointed out. "It's a big galaxy I guess."
"That it is." Tommy agreed, then had another idea. "That's where your powers come from though, isn't it."
She shook her head. "Nirrti was trying to force my village's evolution. The reason I have powers isn't because I came from another world I'm just more evolved. Maybe he is too."
"Andros had powers too, I never had the chance to ask him about them." Tommy looked up at the power tube. "This doesn't make any sense. How can the two of you have powers like Zordon's people if they come from advanced evolution?"
"We're not the first." Cassie said, bringing everyones attention back to her. "The first humans. There were others, I don't know much about them because my mother never told me, but there were others, before. We call them the Ancients, they colonised the whole galaxy thousands of years ago until most of them died out. Those that didn't evolved powers like mine."
"Really?" Dawn asked. "That is cool."
"There's more." Cassie told them. "But I'm not not supposed to know about it."
"Then we don't need to know either." Dawn told her.
"No, you should know this. I'm not keeping anything secret anymore. It's the ultimate result, eventually we evolve past the physical form. The Ancients ascended, became living thought and energy."
"Ascended." Faith said in a odd voice.
Tommy tried to ignore that, he'd ask her about it later. "That's everything you know." Cassie nodded. "It's a lot to take on board. The four of you better take some down time to process this."
"And recover from the ass kicking we just took." Faith said, he voice still shaken by whatever.
As the four beamed out Tommy gazed up at the power tube again. Zordon would know what was going on, he always did. Even if he didn't he'd still know what to do. Tommy was just blindly groping in the dark.
"Thinking again?" Alpha asked.
"I wish he was still here."
"Have you been reading the records I found?"
"Haven't had the chance. Why?"
"I have. You might find them useful." The robot told him and left for the Zord hanger again.
End Chapter One