Chapter 11: Ultimate Jungle Fury
Lord of the Skies
Jarrod sat in a meditative pose within the RinJuken Akugata dojo.
Kata crossed his arms over his chest and paced slowly behind the teen.
“So, young lion. You have turned the despair of your nightmares into power…” he said. “However…Despair alone can only push your RinJuken so far. It’s not enough for you to obtain the strength you seek.”
“That’s why I want your training, Master Kata,” Jarrod said.
Kata nodded. “To continue your training, you will need hatred.”
“Summon the pain in your heart,” Kata said. “Expand it, and make it stimulate the flow of Ki through your Body and Soul.”
Jarrod stood and dropped his cloak. He stepped from his pedestal and walked towards Kata.
Kata faced his pupil. “Knowing your weakness is not as simple as thinking about it. That weakness is connected to your hatred.”
Kata rolled his hands into fists and walked towards Jarrod. “Hawk-Fist Ringi…”
Camille shimmered into view. She morphed into her armor and grabbed the Kenma’s arm before he could strike.
Kata glared at the Shaded. “What are you doing, girl? Do you intend to interfere?”
“Will this really make my master stronger?” Camille asked. “I doubt that…”
Suddenly, two blurs shot into the dojo and bashed Camille off her feet. The attackers landed. Each look bird-like, one with black feathers, and the other with white feathers.
The black-feathered monster armed a jagged sword. “Touching Master Kata’s body is not allowed, barbarian!”
“What is this?” Camille asked as she climbed to her feet. “Who are you?”
The white-feathered monster snapped into a fighting stance. “I am RinJuken Crane-Fist, Rutsu.”
“I am RinJuken Crow-Fist, Rasuuka!” the black-feathered monster shouted. “We have sworn to serve at Master Kata’s side.”
The two demons kneeled before their master.
Kata looked down upon them with approval.
“These are my bodyguards,” he said. “The Two Flying Fists. They specialize in aerial combat.”
“Kata,” Rasuuka said. “It is our mission to serve and protect you.”
“Give us any order you wish,” Rutsu said.
Camille glared at the demons. She stepped closer to Jarrod and placed a hand on his shoulder. “My mission is to protect my Master DaiShi. You-”
Jarrod shrugged off her arm. “Stop it, Camille,” he said. “This training was prepared for me. I’m ready for it.”
Kata laughed. “Yes…But before my young lion’s training, I would like to give a mission to my guards. Rutsu! Rasuuka! To raise my Rinki, I need you to gather the humans’ screams and despair. Scout this world, and report to me.”
“Very well,” Rasuuka said.
They snapped their wings and shot from the dojo.
Rick loaded his handguns with tranquilizer darts filled with wolfsbane.
“I have to go after him,” Rick said. “Stop him before he…”
The exorcist shook his head.
“We’re coming too,” Casey said. “You’ll need help.”
“I don’t think seeing you would be very helpful,” Rick said. “He blames you for the death of our father.”
“We never even met the guy,” Lilly said.
“It doesn’t matter,” Rick said. “You’re Rangers. And as far as Rin’s concerned, a Ranger killed our father. Which isn’t far from the truth.”
An alarm beeped from the back of the dojo.
Adam knitted his brow. “Is that…?”
“Nice, right? I installed it while you were gone,” Miki said as she turned on the television. “You can’t keep relying on the news, so I tapped into the city’s surveillance grid. This will let you know when there’s an attack or demon on the loose.”
The images showed Rutsu and Rasuuka descend upon Angel Grove North.
“You guys deal with the RinJuken,” Adam said. “Let Rick find his brother.”
“We’re going too,” a voice said from the rear of the dojo. Kyle walked inside, followed by Enzo, Rika and Evan.
Adam shook his head. “No way. You’re staying here where it’s safe.”
“That’s what I said,” Enzo said. “But Kyle’s really persistent, and-”
“Enzo, shut up,” Kyle said to his friend.
“You’re just kids,” Adam said.
“So are your Rangers,” Kyle said.
“That’s the difference,” Adam said. “They’re Rangers. You’re not.”
“No, but we’re Shaded,” Kyle said. “We have power. And I’m tired of wasting it by sitting here. I want to help. We all do.”
“Actually, I’m just bored,” Rika said.
“And I could really use a nap,” Enzo whispered.
“Let them come,” Rick said. “I’ll keep an eye on them. And I could use the backup.”
“Rick…” Adam started to say.
“They’ll be fine. I won’t let my brother hurt them, or anyone,” Rick said as he rushed out the door.
The kids followed.
“Do you want us to go after them?” Casey asked.
“No…” Adam said. “Get to Angel Grove North before more people get hurt.”
Rin “R.J” Amantini crouched like a beast and snarled at Faust. Faust smiled, completely relaxed, as he walked around the teen.
“My, what a lovely creature you’ve become. I haven’t seen a werewolf in a few hundred years,” he said. “You’ll make a wonderful addition to your father’s army.”
R.J. growled softly.
“What is that?” Faust asked. “A purr? Silly wolf, dogs don’t purr.”
Faust heard footsteps approach from nearby.
Rick ran to the scene, along with Kyle, Enzo, Rika and Evan. The exorcist stopped in his tracks when he saw the headmaster.
“How lovely to see you,” Faust said. “It’s OK…I have your brother under my complete control. He won’t be hurting anyone.”
“What are you doing here?” Rick asked.
“I-” Faust sighed and lowered his shoulders. “Oh, I suppose you’ve caught me on an off day. I’ve worked with humans for 1,000 years; helped them exorcise this demon and wipe out that demon. Etc., etc., etc. Really, I was just clearing the competition to make way for my big brother.”
“Your…brother?” Rick asked.
“Azmodai. The First Demon,” Faust said. “I don’t particularly care for him, but family is family, and I plan to give him a wonderful gift the next time I see him. An army of Shaded, and now, a pet werewolf too.”
Rick narrowed his eyes. “We trusted you…”
“I would hope so, after 1,000 years of helping you exorcists fight the good fight,” Faust said. “But now that the Seals are about to be broken, and the Dark One released, I had to pick a side. And family always wins.”
Faust thrust his hand and fired a distortion blast that hurled Rick and the kids off their feet.
“Rin, I do hate fighting,” Faust said. “Please, be a good pet and take care of this for me?”
R.J. pounced to attack as Faust stepped into the shadows.
Rick rolled into a crouched stance and opened fire. R.J. twisted in midair to dodge the bullets, and he tackled his brother to the ground.
Kyle charged forward. His blood surged through his muscles, and he shifted into his Shaded form. His hair and skin turned chalk-white, and his eyes turned solid black, except for white irises.
The Shaded smashed his shoulder against R.J., knocking the wolf off the exorcist. R.J. slashed his claws. But Kyle grabbed the wolf’s wrist and head-butted his face.
The wolf staggered backward and clawed Kyle, slashing through his shirt and flesh with splatters of blood.
Evan stayed back in fear. He agreed to join the others because he didn’t want left behind. Now he regretted that decision.
Rick looked to the boy and tossed him a tablet. “Evan, read. Just like I told you. You can do it.”
Evan caught the tablet and nodded. He breathed deeply to calm himself and pulled up the text on the touchscreen.
He read the text. “Evil is in their hearts. Oh Lord, give them according to their works, and according to the wickedness of their endeavors…”
R.J. howled and dropped to his knees.
“Good, Evan!” Rick shouted to the boy. Rick knew the spirits of extinct werewolves powered R.J.’s Soul Metal armor. And exorcism spells could weaken those evil spirits.
Kyle lunged at R.J. But R.J. swatted the teen aside and pounced towards his brother.
Rick fired his wolfsbane tranquilizers. The darts stabbed R.J. but didn’t slow his momentum. He tackled Rick, and they rolled across the street.
Evan kept reading. “Give them after the work of their hands, render unto them to their reward…”
R.J. howled with pain and grasped his head. He staggered backward and pulsed with violet light.
His Soul Metal armor snapped around his body as he transformed into Gou, the Storm Knight.
Gou unsheathed his swords and slashed at Kyle, who barely managed to jump away.
Rick looked to Enzo. “Now, just like I told you!”
Enzo sighed and lifted a talisman. “I can’t believe I’m about to say this…” he muttered. He gripped tightly onto the talisman. “Homage to the all-pervading Vajras, Destroy!”
A bolt of Holy energy shot from the sky like lightning and struck Gou with a massive flash of energy that hurled him across the street.
Enzo opened his eyes wide with amazement. “Holy shit.”
Gou used his swords for balance and climbed to his feet.
Rick loaded his guns with rune-tipped bullets and fired. The bullets blasted Gou with bursts of spark.
“Rika, you’re up!”
“Don’t tell me what to do…” she muttered.
She shifted into her Shaded form. Her hair and skin turned chalk white, and her eyes turned solid black except for her yellow irises.
She felt dark power surge through her veins. And she liked it.
She smirked and thrust her palms forward. “Kitsune!”
She fired bursts of electricity shaped like a pair of foxes. The blasts exploded against Gou with bursts of power that hurled him against a building.
The Knight crashed and dropped his swords.
Evan finished reading his verse. “Thou shalt destroy them and shall not build them up. Blessed be the Lord. The Lord is my helper, and my protector. Thou shalt perish!”
Gou howled with rage and pain, and the shockwave shook the streets. His armor powered down with a flash of violet light.
R.J. grasped his head, staggered to his feet, and screamed. He shifted back and forth between his human and Shaded form as his head raged with pain.
A beastial voice screamed through his mind. “Do you really think you can get rid of me so easily, Rin? Do you?!”
His aura flared with violet light that washed across the street.
Rutsu and Rasuuka stood on rooftops and snapped feather darts at people below. Citizens screamed and ran with panic as the darts exploded around them with bursts of spark.
Casey, Theo and Lilly ran to the scene.
“Up there!” Lilly shouted when she spotted the monsters.
They stood at the base of the building and looked up.
“Leave these people alone!” Casey shouted.
The two Sky Fists laughed. They lifted their hands and summoned lightning from the despair of their victims. The lightning blasted the streets with massive bursts of spark.
“Let’s morph it up,” Theo said.
“Morph it…what??” Lilly asked.
Theo shook his head. “New saying. I was just trying it out.”
“Don’t do that again. Ever,” she said.
“Come on, guys,” Casey said as they armed their morphers.
“Jungle beast! Spirit, unleash!” Their animal auras wrapped around them as they morphed into their Ranger forms.
“With the strength of the tiger…Jungle Fury Red Ranger!”
“With the stealth of the jaguar…Jungle Fury Blue Ranger!”
“With the speed of the cheetah…Jungle Fury Yellow Ranger!”
“Savage Task Force!” the Red Ranger shouted. Together they called out: “Jungle Fury Rangers!”
The Sky Fists leapt to the street.
Rutsu armed twin sabers. “Crane Fist!” he shouted. “Kakuketsu Sen Ken!”
Rasuuka armed a think jagged sword. “Crow-Fist!” he shouted. “Kushoku Ban Tou!”
The Sky Fists charged to attack. And the Rangers returned the charge.
The team launched a series of kicks and punches enforced with Geki. The Flying Fists blocked and dodged the blows as they circled their opponents.
Red Tiger and Yellow Cheetah focused on Rasuuka, while Geki Blue faced off with Rutsu.
The Blue Ranger swung a back-fist blow Rutsu blocked. The monster struck back with high and low slashes, but Blue Jaguar ducked and hopped to avoid the blows.
Rasuuka slashed and hacked his sword, striking the Red and Yellow Rangers with bursts of spark that kept them at bay.
Yellow Cheetah lunged with a round-kick Rasuuka blocked. And Red Tiger snapped a crescent kick the monster ducked to avoid. The Rangers closed in from both sides with a flurry of punches and kicks, but the monster blocked the blows with relative ease.
He swung upward and slashed Red Tiger with a burst of spark that whipped him off his feet. The monster snapped around and swung wide, and his blade slashed Yellow Cheetah with a burst of spark that whipped her aside.
Blue Jaguar charged at Rutsu.
He armed his weapons and leapt through the air. Rutsu jumped towards the Blue Jaguar, and they passed each other while Rutsu slashed the Ranger to the ground.
The Blue Ranger crashed onto his back.
Rutsu landed and tilted his head at the sight of the fallen Ranger. “Is that it?”
Blue Jaguar rolled to his feet and charged. He swung his tonfa through several strikes Rutsu blocked.
Rutsu slashed at the Ranger’s legs, but Blue Jaguar leapt over the monster with a somersault and landed behind him.
Rutsu snapped around and chopped his blades repeatedly, hacking the Ranger’s armor with bursts of spark. With a final chop, Rutsu slashed the Ranger with a burst of spark that dropped him to the ground.
Nearby, Rasuuka swung wide and slashed Red Tiger and Yellow Jaguar off their feet with bursts of spark.
The Rangers tumbled and landed next to Blue Jaguar. They climbed to their feet as the monsters surrounded them.
Rutsu laughed mockingly. “These guys are annoying, Rasuuka. Let’s crush them with our special technique.”
They armed their feather blades. “Ringi! Juggling!”
They tossed their darts back and forth to each other, juggling the blades as they slashed the Rangers’ armor with showers of sparks. The strikes whipped the Rangers off their feet, and they tumbled across the ground.
Rutsu laughed again. “They’re so weak!”
Kata clutched Jarrod’s chest. The teen winced as he felt the Kenma’s claws pierce his skin.
“In deadly battle, there is training,” Kata said. “Young lion…the amplified pain in your heart might destroy your mind.”
“I will do anything to become stronger…” Jarrod said.
“Your determination is admirable,” Kata said.
He stepped back and swung his arms into a fighting stance. “Ringi! Osoi Ippen!”
The Kenma lunged and clutched Jarrod’s chest with a burst of shadow energy. Jarrod shook with pain as his memories flashed back to the darkness that destroyed his childhood.
Kata tilted his head. “The pain of your mind affects your body.”
Kata twisted his hand, and Jarrod screamed. Camille watched from the shadows and shivered with fear.
Kata tightened his grip. “Hate your weakness! Hate your past!”
Within his own mind, R.J. stood on a white dreamscape and faced off with a wolf. The wolf stood upright, its muscular body covered with dark purple fur. He snarled, baring his fangs, and held his palms wide open to show his claws.
“Are you afraid?” the wolf taunted. “You should be…”
“What are you?”
“I am you. And you are me, little wolf,” the wolf said.
“No…” R.J said as he shook his head. “You’re my armor. My Soul Metal.”
“We are one and the same,” the wolf said. “Filled with the same rage. The same hatred.”
“We’re not the same. I’m nothing like you!”
“Your blood boils with anger this very moment, wolf cub! Tell me, how are we so different? You see your brother for the first time in months, and you bash his face in? Is that not primal? Is that not beastial?”
“Get out of my head!”
R.J. lunged with a flying knee strike the wolf blocked. The creature swatted R.J. aside, grabbed his neck, lifted him off his feet, and smashed him to the floor.
The wolf leaned down and snarled. “Your demon blood boils in you. You are my perfect companion!”
R.J. used one hand to grab the wolf’s wrist and the other to smash the creature’s locked elbow. The wolf howled with pain and stepped back.
R.J. rolled to his feet and pounced with a knee blow and elbow strike that forced the wolf backward.
The wolf laughed. “Do you really think you can win this battle? You are the son of the First Demon!”
“No…” R.J. said. “My Father was a priest. A good man…and he would kick your ass all the way to Hell.”
R.J. ignited with a violet aura. He stepped into a defensive stance and glared at his opponent. “I may be angry…I may be filled with the same rage as you. But I want something you don’t.”
“And what is that, little wolf?”
R.J. hopped and smashed his knee upside the wolf’s head, whipping his body backward. Before the wolf crashed, R.J. spun with a kick that bashed him through the air.
The teen landed and formed a sphere of violet energy between his palms.
The wolf climbed to his feet and snarled with delight. “Good. Tell yourself that, little wolf cub. And maybe, just maybe, you will one day believe it.”
R.J. hurled the bolt of energy, which ripped through the wolf with a massive explosion of violet light.
R.J. collapsed to his knees. His Soul Metal armor snapped into place with a burst of light, and then shattered to pieces.
He shifted into his human form and lost consciousness.
The three Rangers climbed slowly to their feet.
Rutsu laughed mockingly. “Look. They think they can still fight!”
“Pathetic,” Rasuuka said.
“Shall we grow?” Rutsu asked.
Rasuuka nodded. “We grow.”
The monsters shifted into fighting stances. “Ringi! Jashin Gouten Hen!”
Their bodies expanded and grew giant.
The Rangers slapped their right fists against their left palms.
“Geki Beasts, emerge!” They thrust their hands and fired waves of energy shaped like their animal spirits. The spirits expanded and grew giant.
The Rangers leapt into the air and entered their Geki Beasts, which solidified into zords: The Geki Tiger, Geki Cheetah and Geki Jaguar.
“Geki Beasts unite!” the Rangers shouted. “Jungle Fury Fusion!”
The three zords shifted shape and combed to form a Megazord.
“Jungle Pride Megazord!” the Rangers shouted. “Geki Touja!”
Rasuuka and Rutsu shot into the air, out of the Megazord’s range.
Red Tiger shook his head. “We can’t fight in the air…”
“We’ll just have to bring them to our level,” Yellow Cheetah said.
“The Elephant-Fist?” Blue Jaguar asked.
The Yellow Ranger nodded. “Let’s try it.”
Days ago, Adam sought one of the last Pai Zhua masters to teach the Rangers a new fighting technique. Although the masters lived in seclusion, Miki knew of them through Master Mao, and she helped Adam find one: Sammo Hung Gambo, nicknamed “Master Phant.”
Master Phant focused his attention on Lilly and taught her to use the Elephant Hammer as part of the Elephant-Fist fighting style.
Adam explained that as long as her spirit mimicked that fighting style, together with the Rangers, she should be able to summon a new Geki Beast.
“Sounds like a plan,” Red Tiger said.
They slapped their right fists against their left palms. “Elephant-Fist! Geki Waza! Rai Rai Jyu!”
Their Geki surged like green fire, washed across the Megazord, and shot upward.
The energy wave took shape to form a new zord: Geki Elephant.
The Rangers slapped their right fists against their left palms.
“Geki Elephant! Equip!”
Geki Elephant shifted shape and snapped around the Megazord like a suit of armor, forming a helmet, pauldrons and chained mace.
The Megazord swung its mace and snapped the weapon at the Flying Fists. But the monsters flew aside to dodge the attack.
Yellow Cheetah cursed beneath her breath. “We have to put more Geki into the throw.”
The Megazord swung the chain through a butterfly pattern and snapped the mace upward. The Flying Fists dodged, and Geki Touja snapped its chain at them again.
“Is that the best you can do?” Rutsu taunted.
He slashed the mace from the air, and the weapon smashed Geki Touja with bursts of spark.
The monsters flew in rapid circles as they charged their Rinki. “Ringi! Hasjibuto Tanchou Kyaku!”
They shot at Geki Touja with flying kicks that bashed the Megazord off its feet.
Geki Touja crashed, and the Rangers fell within their cockpit.
“OK, the Elephant Hammer is useless…” Yellow Cheetah said.
Red Tiger climbed to his feet, as did his teammates. “Come on. We’ve got to try again.”
“You do know the definition of insanity? Right?” Yellow Cheetah asked.
Geki Touja stood.
The Flying Fists floated and crossed blades. Their swords sparked a sphere of black-tinted, purple energy that crackled with strands of power.
They hurled the blast, which exploded against Geki Touja and hurled the Megazord backward. Geki Touja crashed and skid across the streets.
The impact knocked the Rangers onto the floor of the cockpit.
Red Tiger slammed his fist against the floor. “This is useless. We’ve got to get them to ground level.”
“Maybe not,” Blue Jaguar said as he and his teammates climbed to their feet. “I have my training from Master Li. The Bat-Fist…”
“You just started,” Red Tiger said.
“So?” Blue Jaguar asked. “Maybe it’s already enough to call on a bat-zord.”
“Sure,” Yellow Cheetah said sarcastically. “If it’s that easy, we might as well form Voltron.”
“I’m being serious, Lilly,” Blue Jaguar said.
The Blue Ranger placed his right fist against his left palm and lowered his head. He thought of his training with Master Li, nicknamed “Master Swoop.”
Theo and Master Swoop danced with fans by the lakeshore. Theo focused on watching Master Swoop closely and mimicking his movements.
“No,” Master Swoop said. “Don’t think. Don’t focus. Lose yourself. Lose yourself, and let your mind float free.”
Blue Jaguar’s Geki ebbed with power that connected him to his teammates. They acted on instinct.
“Bat-Fist! Geki Waza! Rai Rai Jyu!”
Their Geki surged like navy-tinted fire, washed across the Megazord, and shot upward.
The energy wave took shape to form a new zord: Geki bat.
The Rangers slapped their right fists against their left palms.
“Geki Bat! Equip!”
Geki Bat shifted shape and snapped around the Megazord like a suit of armor, forming a helmet, pauldrons and winged gauntlets.
The Megazord snapped its wing fans and shot into the air.
Rutsu laughed mockingly. “No way they can match us in the air.”
The Flying Fists leaned back and shot through the skies.
Geki Touja snapped its wings and followed with a burst of speed. The Megazord twisted between the Flying Fists, swung its wing fans and slashed them with bursts of spark.
Rutsu hovered aside, armed his twin sabers, and shot towards Geki Touja.
The Rangers slapped their right fists against their left palms. “Sen Sen Dan Sa!”
The Megazord twirled like a drill and slashed the monster with massive bursts of spark that ripped through his body. The final slash hurled the monster from the air; he crashed to the ground and exploded into ash.
“Rutsu!” Rasuuka shouted.
Geki Touja twisted and shot through the air towards Rasuuka. The Megazord slammed into the monster, and they hurled through the skies.
“You bastards!” Rasuuka shouted as he struggled against the Megazord.
The Rangers placed their right fists against their left palms. “Geki Waza! Dai Bun Bun Sen!”
Geki Touja spun like a drill and created an energy cyclone. The cyclone ensnared Rasuuka and thrashed his body with massive bursts of spark.
Geki Touja slashed its fans through energy waves that shot through Rasuuka and tore his body apart. The monster exploded into ash.
Black-and-purple energy washed across Jarrod like fire. His aura flared as Kata walked around him.
“Hatred becomes new Rinki,” Kata said. “The young lion advances. Make hatred your power…”
Camille watched from the shadows. But she couldn’t look for long. The sight of Jarrod’s glare, his hands rolled into fists, his jaw clenched…
She shook her head. She couldn’t let Kata warp him into a monster. Her master needed a new instructor.
She pulled one of the Kenma Bracelets from her belt, along with one of Naja’s nails.
Camille morphed into her armor and swam off the coast of China. She carried one of the Kenma Bracelets, which contained one of the demon’s spirits, along with one of Naja’s nails, which could revive the dead.
She spotted a mound of dirt, which concealed the corpse of a woman possessed by Rageku years ago. The Kenma maintained a connection with the body.
Camille swam further downward but bashed into an energy field that thrashed her armor.
She unsheathed her sai blades and slashed through the field, which dissipated into sparks of light.
Camille swam to the ocean floor and landed next to the demon’s body. Demon of the Sea, Rageku. Let your sleeping body once again have the flame of life.
She stabbed the nail into the body. The Kenma’s spirit flared from the bracelet and entered the body, which flashed with dark power.
The shockwave blasted Camille from the ocean, and she crashed onto the shore. The impact knocked her from her armor with a flash of green light.
Rageku leapt from the ocean and landed on the shore. She wore white robes and carried a staff, and her head looked like a jellyfish, which glowed with blue eyes.
Camille sat up and faced the demon. “You’re…”
“Correct,” the Kenma said. “I am the Kenma of the Sea. RinJuken Jellyfish-Fist, Rageku.”
To be continued…Chapter 12