Power Rangers In Retrograde - Mystic Force – Trick 31 Darkness Returns
“Udonna! Udonna!” Maddie called leading the other Rangers into Rootcore (sans Chris and LeeLee), “We're back!”
Udonna smiles as the rangers arrive, “Welcome Back Rangers, I take it Daggeron's training is complete.”
The Rangers pause and look back to Daggeron, “In all honesty they could have used more time.”
“But after our shadows were destroyed and Lienbow,” Chip begins.
“L-Lienbow? You found Lienbow?” Udonna's voice cracked, tears in her eyes.
Daggeron held her hands, “He has been with us all this time...Udonna...Lienbow was Koragg.”
“K-Koragg?” Clare gasps, “Koragg was Lienbow?”
“W-Where is he now?” Udonna looks over the rangers hopefully.
Nick bowed his head, “She...he...had to go...”
Udonna dried her tears with a smile, “Tell me everything.”
“You're taking this awfully well,” Vida comments.
Udonna smiles warmly, “For the last 20 years I have fear I had lost my husband and son, in the last few months I have learned my son is alive, safe in the human world, and now my husband is alive, why shouldn’t I be happy? Whatever happens I just can't be sad because everything I have fear and worried about has turned out to be lies. And the Mystic Force is alive and well, how could I be sad?”
“Speaking of the Mystic Force,” Clare adds looking around, “Where is Xander.”
Vida coughs, “Y-Yeah about that...”
Xander dropped back to the ground as she reverted to her male form, “I need to go back.”
His voice cracked back to the sprites but he remained Male, “But how?”
He looked down at his hands as the became slender, his form shifted back to the winged girl, “All this power and no one to use it to join our friends.”
“Maybe I can help with that,” a new voice said softly as a figure in black approached from the shadows.
The Figure stepped into the light with a smile, “I'm back.”
“N-Nicole?” Xander laughed as she ran to her wrapping her arms around the Lost Ranger, “Where have you been?!”
Nicole laughed as she found a seat, “Now that's a story in itself! It's crazy, look at this!”
Flipping open the Black Morpher Xander stepped back confused as he reverted to male form, “Is that?”
Nicole looked away as she waved it as black magic shot from it, “Seriously dude I know I'm cute and everything but can you put on some pants?!”
Xander flusters as black leather pants appear on him, “S-Sorry, I lost all my clothes when I well...lost myself. But man am I glade to see you mate, having a familiar face is just the thing I needed to reassert myself.”
Nicole laughs nervously, “Just don't 'reassert yourself' on me.”
before adding with a soft laugh, “though you are cute.”
Xander laughs nervously with her as he takes a seat next to her, “Still fighting the girl inside?”
She laughs nervously, “Y-Yeah...don't suppose you could do a girlfriend a solid and turn into your fairer half.”
Xander shivers as he blurts out, “NO!”
“Alright geeze,” Nicole flinches, “Don't need to bite mys head off!”
“S-sorry,” Xander's voice cracks to the other one, “It's just...while you were gone I...the magic...”
Nicole smiles waving her hand dismissively, “Say no more, if anyone get what you mean it's me.”
Xander laughs nervously, “I-I guess you do…so where did you get a new Morpher?”
Nicole tilts her head confused a moment, “What?”
“The black morpher?” Xander points to the Morticon Morpher in her hand.”
“O...Oh right...sorry still a little scatter brained. Jumping through dimensions will do that to you.”
Xander smiles, “I'm just glade you're alive, we were afraid you died!”
“Died? Oh right, when Nick exploded...god that sounds so weird when I say it out loud.”
“So what happened?”
Nick whistles, “Well cliff notes version after I gave Vida my pink magic things went fuzzy, I was still in control despite all the dark magic that The Master was pumping into me.”
“Yeah we had Daggeron use a wish to keep you safe!”
Nicole growls and rolls her eyes, “Right more wishes.”
“Are you angry?”
Nicole stood up and motioned the curves of her body, “Xander look at me! I'm stronger, faster, have better magic control, and can't remember the last time I was a boy. When I was a little girl I remember dreaming of being a princess and being saved by my knight in shining armor. I've stopped being Nikolai Blecker and BECOME Nicole. Wishes have completely changed who I am.”
“Not completely,” Xander says softly, “You still remember your friends.”
Xander sighs, “While you were gone I completely lost myself to the Magic, I didn't just become Xandra or started to date boys but at my core was still the same person I completely forgot who Xander was. I became a Nature Spirit, concerned only with growling and cultivating the land. Who's only friends were the trees and the sun. Xander no longer existed...if my Shadow hadn’t been destroyed I might never...”
Nicole pulled Xander close, “Oh! I'm so sorry, here I am harping on such cosmetic changes and you've had it much worse, I'm so sorry!”
Xander pulled away as he shook his head, “Forget about it.”
“Forget about it? How can I forget about it, I’ve been such a selfish girl! If anything I should be asking you for forgiveness.” Then she brightened up, “Tell you what, when we get back how bought I do your laundry for a week? Or make you dinner.”
Xander couldn’t help himself, even though part of him knew it was wrong it felt good, it felt like himself to be in a conversation like this with a cute girl, “How about a date?”
Nicole paused, her mind doing cartwheels, “A d-date? With you? Well I suppose it's only fair, it's not like I haven’t dated other boys...and I do kind of owe you.”
Xander smiled as he kissed her cheek, he was feeling more and more in control of himself though deep down he knew it was only because Nicole was slipping further and further away from her true self.
“Oh and there's this cute dress I've been dying to show off with someone,” Nicole squealed in delight, “You're going to love it!”
Xander felt both better and worse, so he tried to change the subject, “I still want to hear the rest of your story.”
“My story?” she started confused, “Oh right! My story!”
“So I gave Vida my magic, and you'll get a laugh out of this, but after I did I turned into a guy! Can you imagine me as a guy?” Nicole laughed sincerely, “I mean seriously how could I ever pass as a guy?”
Xander remained quiet.
“Anyway after that things go fuzzy,” she rubs her neck, “I-I think either Vida or Necrolai bit me, turned me into a vampire, I remember a hunger, and a desire to please Necrolai, as well as a desire to plunge the world into darkness.”
Nicole pauses turning the Morpher over in her hands, “Remember Morticon? Well it seems like this was his Morpher from that Dark Universe Jenji made that none of us really remember clearly. But when Nick exploded and I tried to escape, wounded as I was, I wound up somewhere else, another realm, and for several days I count not move, this…burning sensation...slowly numbing every bone in my body. I even dreamed about Nick, and Morticon, and this other me, a boy.”
She laughs again at the last part, “what is it with me and turning into a boy? Right?”
Xander forced a laugh, “Y-Yeah, you as a boy, hilarious...”
“I know right,” she laughed heartily, “I mean I know I was one...once...but that was like...forever a go...”
Nicole voice grew softer and softer as she wavered a bit, “I m-mean I've been a g-girl all my l-life right...”
Xander couldn't help himself as he spoke softly, “No, just since you became a Power Ranger.”
“T-that can't be right...I remember being a little girl...i dream of being a w-wife and mother...”
Xander held her, letting Nicole cry her confusion dry, he didn’t not say a word until she pulled herself away, “Everything is so confusing.”
Xander smiled as he took a deep breath and took female form, fighting the voice of the forest, “Does it really matter? We're w-wizards changing gender is irrelevant.”
Nicole smiles as she laughs pointing the wand at Xander to give he a bra and green black cotton blouse, “I suppose not. But a civil girl shouldn’t be waving those things about, could put an eye out.”
Xander laughs, “At least your smiling again.”
Nicole laughs, drying her tears, “Thanks Xander.”
“What are friends for...so you were saying Nick pulled you out of the Darkness? Wonder if anyone else had similar experiences.”
Nicole smiles, “Guess we'll have to ask them when we get back home.”
Xander nods, “So you were lost in another realm? How did you get back?”
“Oh now that's where thing get really weird, so after Nick saves me from the darkness I wake up to see this Gold and Silver Ranger bombing some prison camp/workhouse thing and I hear someone call or help, so I morph...and find this girls who looks a lot like me, another Nicole!”
“I know right? Seems like I was in some weird parallel dimension where something call the Venjix Virus destroyed the world and I'm not totally sure how it happened but I had a new titan mode, a transforming, bio-machine half Unicorn-tank and half Pegasus-Jet and this other Nicole was my pilot, the Pink 'RPM' Ranger.”
“Yeah never heard of them either. Apparently Gold and Silver were the only members, and now well...i guess us...the Nicoles. We spent the next couple months on the run, doing rescue ops and hit and runs on Venjix operations. I stayed in Titan form for most of it since Nicole had no Zord or transport otherwise and Gem and Gemma, that is to say Gold And Silver performed regular maintenance and upgrades on me. Got kinda worried that if I ever changed back I'd have a bunch of machine parts where organs should be so I conserved my magic so I could make sure if anything did go wrong I could use magic to smooth the process. But that's not the weird part.”
“What could possibly be weirder then that?”
“Turns out the transformation want just skin deep, I mean I had an operable cockpit that Nicole could board and a fuel tank, sure I can get that but then one day Gemma says that I have some kind of micro assembly plant in my aft section and shed like to expand my systems and turn me into the carrier for their zords and expand the assembly system into a larger scale. As it was my existing plant once activated could produce smaller drone ships of myself.”
Xander gasps, “Are you implying...”
Nicole trembles slightly, “I-I think so.”
“You didn't let them...did you?”
Nicole hold her stomach, “Part of me always wanted to be a mother. I suppose it's a natural feeling for all women. But still the idea of repossessing my womb into a some kind of machine shop was terrifying. But by the same token you have no idea how bad this world was, killer robots kidnapping people, a desolate wasteland, and 3 Power Rangers trying to take back a world that had already fallen? How could I refuse?”
Xander couldn't say anything.
Nicole nods, “Besides it looked like I was going to be there forever.”
“H-How did you get back?”
Nicole is silent a moment before speaking, “Venjix is always planing, researching new ways to crush the resistance. And we are always raiding his bases for survivors, parts, etc. In one such raid we found plans for a interdimensional pipeline. A sort of subway between worlds. It was years from completion and they would need a specialized ship to breach the barrier but if the barrier between words was weak at this junction…”
“You used your magic to punch through?”
She nods, “I made sure that we could have a replacement for me, a second carrier, I guess in a sense you can say I gave birth to myself and left my daughter with them but nothing is really that cut and dry when your consciousness is inside a ship. I didn't really feel pain or hunger, except when damage exposed my inner workings, or when my fuel tank was low, and I didn't really sleep so much as shut down and then wake up several hours later with only the odd dream here or there...it was quite surreal...but they needed my power so I...”
Xander hold Nicole as she begins to cry again.
“I'm just so happy to be back with my friends again! You have no idea how many realms I had to stumble though, how many months I’ve been wandering trying to find my way home.”
“Months? But it's only been a couple weeks,” Xander says confused.
Nicole dries her tears, “Time across dimensions doesn't functions the same everywhere….It's been three years since I’ve seen any of you.”
Xander holds Nicole close as she begins to sob again, “You're here now, so stop crying and let's rejoin the others.”
Nicole smiles as he hugs Xander close, “It's a deal.”
The catsuit growled as she tugged on Necrolai but she refused t move, having dropped to the ground, a number of Hidiacs and Styxoids sounding them, Necrolai was back in her normal form, out of her armor but not human.
“I said leave me alone, I...I just don't care any more, Rangers, The Master...m-my LeeLee is gone,” Tear streaming from Necrolai's face.
The catsuit growled.
“I said go,” Necrolai hissed, eyes flashing red, “GO!”
“MROWL!” the catsuit hissed leaping back her heart racing.
“Nrow?” she mewled softly as she got her bearings and tilted her head curiously to Necrolai. “Mer...rowl?”
“Just leave me alone.”
Slowly the catsuit turned around, pausing to look back, “Nrowl?”
Then her eyes went wide, 'The Master could be hurt!' and without another thought she bounded off, Styxoids and Hidiacs following after granting Necrolai her wish to be alone.
Necrolai took a long breath as she looked around, “Alone, again.”
A voice cut through the darkness, as for a moment Necrolai's eyes filled with hope, “L-LeeLee?”
But then crashed into nothing as she slumped down and her voice grew soft, “Imagining things...LeeLee is dead...the Master...”
“Mom I'm here.”
There was that voice again, accompanying a warm hand on her shoulder.
Necrolai hissed brushing the hand aside, “I said leave me alone your mangy midriff.”
“Mom, look at me.”
Necrolai hissed, eyes red, fang flashing, as she spun around and to her feet, “I said leave me alone!”
LeeLee was standing in the shadows, arms out. All of Necrolai's rage leaving her as she collapsed into her arms reverting to human as she sobbed, “L-LeeLee? B-But I saw you die!”
“That was my shadow, you remember I told you about it, while I was training to control these new powers all us Rangers had unlocked I sent a shadow in my place to keep up appearances.”
Necrolai pulled away returning to her monster form, “So this is another fake, have I fallen so far my own daughter cant bear to comfort me?”
LeeLee slapped her mother, “Snap out of it mom, this is me, the real me. When my shadow died all of her thoughts and experiences snapped back to me. To all of us, that's why Koragg went to seal the Master, he learned he was Lienbow. That why the Rangers are back at Rootcore to prepare for what comes next, and that's why I'm here. Because I saw my mother watch me die and knew she would be hurting so I came to bring her back into the Light.”
“I'm a vampire, we abhor the light,” Necrolai slumped back to the floor.
LeeLee pulled her to her feet and began to drag her off, “Stop making excuses mom.”
She put up a token effort to resist, if she was serious she could have easily broken her daughters pull but Necrolai was just so happy to learn LeeLee was alive, even if she couldn’t admit it to herself, “Where are you taking me.”
“I don't know,” LeeLee stopped and sighed looking back into her mothers eyes as she reverted to human form, seeming to get younger and younger, “Just...out of here. Something with sun, warmth, friends. It's time you stopped hiding from the light.”
Necrolai had changed into a little girl in a black frilly dress and bow, her eyes red with tears. LeeLee smiled as she hefted her mother up onto her shoulders.
“You can't ever been serious, show the world the real you, can you? You feel lost, weak so you take the form of a little girl.”
“The Master will be furious if I leave his side,” Necrolai protested like a timid child talking about an abusive parent.
“Fuck the Master,” LeeLee hissed, “he only uses his followers to advance his own ambitions. Remember when he tore me apart? Or let imperious turn me into a roach? Or all the pain I had to endure to become the Orange Ranger. The Master never cared for any of us unless we could help free him.”
“But we're monsters, evil, we thrive in the darkness,” Necrolai shielded her eyes as they emerged into the forest, rays of light streamed through the trees to batch them.
LeeLee transforme,d with her mother still on her shoulders, taking the form similar to the Queen of the Vampires as she flew up and broke the skyline, taking a long breath ans she hovered there in the sun as Necrolai tried to shield herself with her arms, hissing, eyes red as her fangs flashed.
“Stop making excuses,” LeeLee said firmly as she pulled her mother off her shoulders and held her close in a hung with her arms pinned down, the sun streaming unabated into Necrolai's face as she continued to struggle and hiss.
LeeLee hovered there for several minutes until Necrolai slowly opened her eyes and saw the sun and the beauty of the forest under them, a soft giggle tickling her throat.
“Isn't all this worth protecting instead of destroying?”
Slowly Necrolai reverted to her familiar monster form and floated there beside her daughter, tears in her eyes as she took in LeeLee's own Vampire Princess form. “You always hated to show your true colors.”
“The Rangers accepted me for who I am, all that I am. I don't need to hind around them...neither should you.”
Necrolai looked curiously to her daughter, “What are you saying?”
“I'm saying we could use your help, you said it yourself, the master would be furious. And how amazing would it be for us to fight side by side with Udonna show her what she is missing with her son.”
“Udonna's son?” Necrolai said confused, “you mean t-the Light? He lives.”
LeeLee growls annoyed, “Yes the Light lives, we don’t know where but we know Phineas saved him, spirited him away to the human world.”
Necrolai mind raced, if she found the Light, turned him then the Master would have to take her back. But then she would be back where this started with her and LeeLee on opposing sides, the gods have for some reason blessed her, sacrificing a shadow in her daughters place but if she continued to serve the Master there was only two possible outcomes. They would destroy the Master, and her. Which was highly unlikely. Or they would die fighting the Master.
“What do you say mom?” LeeLee smiled, offering her hand, “join us?”
“Join you?” she asked confused as she looked at the hand like a venomous serpent. “Become a Power Ranger?”
LeeLee laughed, “Yup.”
'It's madness, lunacy, even the Great Lienbow and the Mystic Warriors count defeat the Master. Maybe if the Rangers had The Light on their side but he was some unknowing civilian living out his life blissfully unaware. To oppose the master means certain death.'
Necrolai looked to the hand again, black and leathery like her own, and LeeLee's face was a younger reflection of hers. In all her years she had never seen LeeLee embrace this side of her. But her time with the Rangers had changed her, LeeLee was no longer ashamed of her true nature, and if the Rangers could do that to LeeLee maybe, just maybe, they had a chance of destroying the Master.
Necrolai smiled as she took the hand and pulled her daughter close as she floated back to the forest, tears of joy in her eyes, “I'll go anywhere you want.”
LeeLee smiled as they landed both of them reverting to human form, “Right! Then let's meet the other Rangers!”
Necrolai smiled, and for the first time in a long time her ice cold veins felt warm and alive, and her voice full of joy, “I would love to meet your friends!”
“Brother! Hey Chris! I'm hoooome!”
The door swung open as Nicole and Xander, both in female form, sauntered in to an empty apartment.
Xander looked around confused, her eyes landing on the TV and game console, “Is that the Playsystem?”
Nicole turned to the TV and smiled as Xander sat down on the couch and unwrapped one of the still wrapped games, “Didn't know my bro was into games, wow things sure have changed.”
Nicole moved to her room, collapsing onto her bed with a relived breath, “It feels great to be home.”
She purred softly a moment before something under her pillow distracted her, sitting up she pulled out a sealed action figure, of her! Or rather the Rose Ranger. Her eyes lit up as she tore it open, “Oh this takes me back! Wow I really pulled off the spandex well.”
Xander smiled from the door, a Green and Red ranger in her hands, “Looks like he's been saving up presents.”
“These are soooooo cute,” she squealed as she tried to pose her figure like she would only to find the hard plastic skirt restricted all mobility of the legs and her good feelings crashed as she tried to peel the plastic off, “What gives, why can't I change her outfit.”
Xander chuckled as she moved over, taking the figure in hand, “You don't really change the outfits on action figures.”
Nicole huffs “Not much of an action figure if the legs don't move.”
Xander laughed as she waved her mystic morpher over the figure softening the plastic of the skirt and cutting seams along the side before handing it back. Nicole giggled as she started posing her figure. “Rock you like a Hurricane! Rose Ranger!”
Xander laughed, “You sound like a little girl playing with her dollies.”
Nicole glared back at him ans set the figure down, “So what! What's wrong with a girl playing with action figures...I mean dollies!”
“Nothing,” Xander chuckled, “It was just cute.”
She huffed, “Our parents never got us, always buying me video games and toy cars, what kind of toys are that for a girl?”
Xander remained quiet.
Nicole soon followed, voice distant, “But I really loved them...used to build this epic adventures out of building blocks and dress up as a Power Ranger. Loved Bandai's toys of the different teams, really cemented my dream to marry one, have his kids. Man you ever see picks of Carter from Lightspeed I has such a crush on him as a little girl. Not many Power Ranger teams give you a real face to connect too.”
“You has a crush on the Red Lightspeed Ranger?”
Nicole shook her head, “What? No! I said Donna, the Pink Ranger, I wanted to marry her, Donna would be an amazing wife!”
Nicole held her head confused, “Wait? Since when was I into girls?”
Xander hugged Nicole, “Don't worry about it. Just go with your feelings.”
“I need to lay down,” Nicole said softly.
“Go ahead, I'll crash on the couch till your brother gets home.”
Calindor wandered, Lieoonna's words echoing in his head as he reached out, summoning a portal, but the spell seal was different, white not violet, and the symbols were different.
'It's me your fiance…'
Her final words before she vanished into the portal with The Master still resonated in his heart, 'My fiance? I have a fiance?'
Calindor stared at the portal confused, “What happened to my Dark Magic, why does it feel like I’ve emerged from a twenty year fog? Everything feels…different.”
Lieonna laughed it was soft and warm as she kissed him on the cheek, A phantom of the girl walked beside him smiling, her clothes transforming to a wedding dress, “My fiance...”
Calindor smiles, “she's beautiful.”
He shook his head, dismissing the phantom as he thought back to before, “I served the Master, I'm pure evil.”
Daggeron appeared next to him as he offered his arm, “Together brother?”
“Together,” Calindor whispers as the memory of them changed together into a horse of Hidiacs and Styxoids.
'We fought side by side against the darkness.'
Lieonna appears again, looking fierce, charging in behind them, 'Was she there too? Silently watching? Trying to tell me her true feelings and I just ignored her?'
Udonna charged in next, along with the rest of the Mystic Warriors, including Lienbow and Niella.
'Ignored her to chase after a woman already in love with another man? I've been such a fool.'
Calidoor looked at the portal as he stepped into it, “I've been given a second chance to make right all I've wronged, maybe then I'll be worthy of Lieonna's feelings.”
And he was gone.
“Hello?” LeeLee poked her head into the main room of Rootcore where the Rangers (sans Xander, Nicole, and Chris) we continuing to get Udonna up to date.
“LeeLee! Welcome back!”
“I us...brought a...friend...is that okay?”
“A friend? Here?” Udonna looked disappointed, “You are supposed to keep your life as Ranger secret.”
LeeLee flustered, “she kind of already knows.”
Necrolai in her human form and back to her normal age, peeked in, bowing her head, “I'm her mother...Necrolai.”
“Necrolai!” The Ranger leaps to their feet, ready to fight.
“I knew we shouldn’t have let her go alone!”
“She's under a spell!”
“Everyone please!” LeeLee put her foot down, “Stand down, she's changed!”
“Fat chance,” Vida hisses. “You conniving bitch, what scheme are you up to?”
Necrolai steps into full view, her head low, “I deserve that.”
“Vida calm down,” LeeLee protests.
“Calm down? She turned me into a monster, stole my free will made me do...” her voice trained off, “terrible things.”
“All true, you have no reason to trust me, I've betrayed all of you...” Necrolai turns to leave, “I-I should go.”
“Mom wait!” LeeLee held her hand as she glared back to Vida and the others, “You guys remember, how shattered she was when my shadow died? She doesn’t want to loose me for real so I convinced her to join us.”
All but Vida nodded, as Vida's shadow was Koragg/Lienbow so she did not get the same memories the others did when the shadows died.
Udonna smiled, moving forward to pull Necrolai into the main chamber, “I can understand the fear of loosing your child. Clare be a dear an brew our new guest some tea.”
“On it Udonna!”
“Udonna you can't be serious!”
Udonna smiles holding Necrolai's hand over her heart, “Love will make you do crazy things.”
“T-thank you,” Necrolai smiles, “Call me Nikki.”
“That was a grrrreat cat nap I feel like a new woman,” Toby purred as she stretched, arching her back as a trio of felines licked her face and her emerald daggers fluttered open with a lazy yawn.
Rolling out of bed and onto her paws she purred as she flexed her claws, swished her tail and licks the felines noses as they mewled hungrily, “Awe are my babies hungry?”
Standing up she stretched again as her pants slid down her slender legs and she sashayed into her bathroom starting at her reflection as she brushed her teeth and reached for her comb, which magically transformed to a brush at her touch. Jumping back a moment she tilted her head then shrugged as she brushed the tangles out of her hair and she stared at her reflection quizzically, “nrowl, something different, but what?”
As she brushed the tangles out of her hair she got undressed curious to note she was in men's boxers and topless as she sauntered into the kitchen and opened the fridge, chugging rather unlady like from a carton of milk as the cats around her mewled as she absently turned hr gaze to her hand flexing her claws in and out, “something is defin-nyan-tly differrrrent but what?”
setting the carton down with a purr she weight her breasts in her hands giving them a gentle squeeze, giving a surprised yelp as a white liquid began to dribble out, “Mrowl?”
Then just as suddenly she dropped to all fours and rolled onto her back purring as several other felines began o gather around her and began to lick at her nipples as she purred, milk dribbling out, “Nrowl! Careful with those fangs kittens, Mama's kinda tender there.”
Closing her eyes she began to pur as the strays had their fill and began to rub against her, which in turn rose a fire between her legs as she purred softly rubbing them anxiously, “Nrowl, where's a good cat boi when you need them?”
Toby's ears flicked this way and that listing to the city outside her window as she reached for her phone which transformed to a mystic morpher at her touch, “Nya? What's this?”
A series of tones and glowing buttons answered her and curiously she taps the keys in sequence.
“Gulwit Mysto Ranger!”
A voice out of nowhere commanded as a spell Seal enveloped her transforming her into the Blue Ranger though instead of a mermaid's tail her visor was in the shape of a cat's paw. Shocked she leapt to her feet as she turned to inspect her body as the felines around her began to disperse, leaping out her open window.
“Nrowl? I'm a Power Ranger?,” she laughed as she joined her kitten and leapt through the open window.
“Hows your streak?” Nicole broke the silence as she paused from her own, pawing at hers absently.
Nicole had done her hair and makeup and wore a slick black dress that shimmered in the lights of the restaurant, opposite her was another gorgeous beauty with a sexy accent in a green blouse and skirt, Xander.
“It's quite good? What about yours? Too spicy or something?”
Nicole sigh, “I dunno, it's just not as appealing as I thought it would be.”
Xander blushes, “S-sorry, I just can't seem to bring myself to eat a salad or any plants really.”
Xander nods, “I think so...Even here I can still hear the whispers of the plants and I just can't bring myself to kill them.”
Nicole nods, “I get you it just have this nagging hankering for like wheat and barley, I think I spent to much tome as a pony.”
Xander laughs, “I cant eats fruits and vegetables and you can't meat. What a messed up couple of girls we are.”
Nicole laughs as she waves her hand dismissively and switches to her best valley girl accent, “And all that beef is gonna go right to your hips girlfriend!”
Xander laughs, “Thanks.”
“It's nice to feel normal again.”
They say in unison before each tilting their head curiously and then breaking out into laughter, a crown of roses sprouting around Xander's head.
Nicole dried her tears of joy and smiled, “You have no idea how good this feel, despite my confusion over my gender identity, who, or what, I find attractive, after all those months passing through dimensions, after all the pieces of me I’ve left behind it just feels good to be doming something normal. I don't even care if its normal for a girl or a boy, it's normal.”
Nicole closes her eyes and leans back, taking a long breath, “I didn't just go from the RPM world to the forest there were a few stops along the way in each one I find someone who needed help, someone who needed a piece of me. I was beginning to think by the time I got back would there be anything left of the real me.”
“What do you mean 'pieces'?”
Nicole sighs, “I might be a bit facetious, its not like I left an arm in one world and an eye in another. But like take the RPM world, I told you about the assembly and drones, but as a machine its not like I was pregnant or anything. When it was just drones its not like they were babies I was sending out to die for the cause, my sensors were linked to them, they had basic AI to maneuver but for the most part they were and extension of me.” she takes a deep breath, “and when they assembled the spare in my plant it wasn’t like I left a fully functional clone. Anything I produce was a mindless machine, only I had my consciousness. My body may have been converted but whatever is the spark that gives life did not come with that, still it's a strange notion, the concept of spreading your legs and having plan fly out of you. It feel like you should call them your babies but you don't really have legs, or...well you know...”
“I can relate,” Xander smiles as Nicole finally takes a bite of her steak as she pluck a rose from her crown, its splits and grows into a full bouquet as she turns it around in her hands, “when I hold a plant I can fell it's life force, hear its whispers, feel connected to it, feel a responsibility but it's not like their my children.”
Xander glanced around their corner of the restaurant to make sure they were out of view as she created a vase in the center of the table and set the roses into it as she created soil and water as roots grew from the bouquet as she planted it into the vase.
Nicole giggles as she leans over kissing Xander on the lips, “Thanks for understanding.”
Xander closed her eyes purring as blooming roses started to grow around the edges of their booth as she held Nicole hand a twist of vines snaking down from her crown blooming as it spiral up Nicole arm to create a second wrath in her hair.
As they broke contact Nicole tries to lean back only to feel the sting of the roses barbs in her arm and looked over with Xander to see her their hands wrapped in roses. The two shared a laugh as Xander loosen the vines and dulled the thorns as the vines broke and they leaned back laughing.
Nicole purrs as she touches her wreath, changing the color of the roes to a soft pink, letting the color wash down the sheath of roses down her arm, “Guess I still have some some of your magic from that time.”
Xander looks away, “That's when everything changed for me, when I started to hear the voice of the forest...what about you?”
Nicole looks curiously to her, “Me? No, maybe it's because of all the other chaos or simply because the nature magic is different then wind magic, their complements but its more out of my field to manipulate nature then it is for you to enhance nature with wind.”
Xander nods, “Would you like me to teach you more about nature magic?”
Nicole shrugs, “I dunno, I just want to get this all over with, no offense but I think once everyone is safe and the Master is gone for good I'm just gonna hang up my wand for good. If I'm lucky I can reclaim my masculinity,” she laughs, “Still seems funny to think of myself as a boy but I need something to hang onto, what about you.”
Xander nods, “I dunno, I think when this is all over I'm going to explore the world, try and distance myself from the forest, ignore the voices, reconnect with my humanity.”
“So once were finished want to swing back by your place, see if your brother is home yet?”
Nicole smiles, “I'd love that.”
Toby blinked as he, no she, found herself atop a building, a few pats her and twists there confirmed the obviously, he was a woman, or at least bore the shape of one under the blue and white spandex of a Power Ranger.
'Am I…' he mused in her normal voice, 'A Power Ranger?'
Flipping open her Mystic Morpher on reflex she created a floating mirror of water and felt her helmet curiously, “That not the regular Blue Ranger, but I'm definitely the Blue Ranger, and a girl to boot...what is going on?”
An explosion in the distance drew her attention before she could really process her change in voice or the more subtle changes in her posture and stance. If someone didn't know better they would have no idea she was ever a man. But with the explosion all that dropped away as she raced across the roof tops running on pure instinct, 'Trouble.'
Her mind was clear, focused, all other concerns were irrelevant, where theirs an explosion there is usually a monster, and where there is a monster the Power Rangers are needed, and she was a Power Ranger now, the who's and whys didn’t matter.”
Chris' shadow enter his apartment to quite the surprise, there asleep on his couch was an attractive young woman who he vaguely recognized. As he moved over to her and gently shook her awake he tried to place the face to a name. “Miss?”
Xander yawned as she awoke and smiled, “Oh hey Chris, we've been waiting for you.”
“Waiting? We? Who are you, how did you get into my apartment.”
“Magic of course,” Xander waved her Morpher about casually, before giving a sheepish grin, “after everything that's happened Nicole kinda lost her keys.”
“N-Nicole? You mean,” chris eyes went wide with joy, “He's back?!”
“Yeah,” Xander stretches, “She's crashed in her room.”
Chris was already on the move as as he saw his younger sister fast asleep atop the sheets tear began to flow, he didn't care if she was a girl she was back and he leapt into her arms laughing, “Nikki! Nikki! Nikki! Welcome back!”
Nicole gave a surprised gasp as she was jolted awake from her slumber to see her older brother crying tears of joy and crushing her in his arms, despite the rude awakening she smiled and hugged him back, tears in her eyes, “I'm Back!”
Xander stood in the frame smiling as the siblings embraced, waiting for them to get through their reunion.
“I have so much to tell you!”
Breaking the hug Chris smiled, “But tell it to the real me!”
Chris nodded and then exploded into a shower of light and warmth.
Xander shrugged, “Seems so.”
“But if he was a shadow where's my real brother?”
Xander shrugged, “Beats me.”
Worlds away Chris lurched forward, tumbling over the side of a mountain as the memories of his shadow returned to him, Reflex let him Morph before he hit the ground but the impact still broken his morph and left him winded as he rolled onto his back eyes tearing and his face a wide smile, “He's back!”
Nicole dried her tears as she began to absently play with a Pink Ranger figure (the original pink not her Rose Ranger, “So how long do we wait?”
Xander shrugs, “Just hope it isn't long, pretty sure his Shadow didn't take time off work and I'd hate for him to get in trouble.”
Nicole shrugs, “I'm sure the number is around her somewhere, if he isn’t back by like morning we'll just call in sick for him.”
Xander nods as she creates a shadow of her own, but of her male half, “I suppose.”
“Speaking of I should really head back to Briarwood, cover for my fairer half and catch the others up before they make assumptions.”
Nicole and the Real Xander nod as the Male heads for the door, “I'll call once Everything is ironed out, no need to disperse myself just to pass along news and have to send another to replace me.”
Xander's shadow smiles, “You know me!”
Nicole laughs, “That why I said it.”
Both Xanders laughed as the shadow slipped outside.
“Nutritious as a mother's milk,” Toby landed in ranger form with a playful mew, “Aqua Mystic Ranger!”
"Fluid as the sea, Blue Mystic Ranger!"
“Nya?” Aqua said confused as the Blue Ranger landed.
“Who?” She responded just as confused.
But the confusion would have to wait as the Catsuit hissed at them while an army of Styxoids and Hidiacs paused in the middle of grabbing civilians as a number of other figures landed and announced themselves.
"Crunan the knight!"
"Vicamros the bard!"
"Caren the paladin!"
"Norian the dragon knight!"
"Xanril the ranger!"
"Loraella the cleric!"
"Dependable and strong as the root, Verdant Mystic Ranger!"
"Rock you like a hurricane, Rose Mystic Ranger!"
"Fast as lightning, Yellow Mystic Ranger!"
"Forceful as fire, Red Mystic Ranger!"
"Power of the Sun! Solaris Knight!”
"Defenders of Yggdrasil! Ready to fight!"
“Power Rangers, Mystic Force!”