The Dragon’s Rise: Chapter Three
The Story Unfolds
Dragon Ranger practiced with his sword skills in the depths of Bandora's palace. Each blow was swift and perfect.
He suddenly snapped around and tossed his sword like a spear. The sword struck a wall concealed by the shadows. Goldar stepped out from those shadows, inches from where the sword had struck.
“Impressive.” Goldar slowly walked towards Dragon Ranger.
“You shouldn’t be here,” Dragon Ranger said. “Animals aren’t allowed.”
“And witty too,” Goldar said. The two villains circled around each other on the fog-covered floor. “No wonder you’re Bandora’s prized warrior. Pity you fight with the grace of a Kerovian sea slug.”
Dragon Ranger launched himself at Goldar and slammed the simian face down on the ground, pinning him there while bending back his arm. “You had your chance at conquering this world, Goldar. You failed. That’s why I’m here. So I suggest you stay out of the way and let me show you how it’s done.”
Dragon Ranger released Goldar and walked out of the room while grabbing his sword.
“Get back here!” Goldar shouted. He fired a flame blast from his sword that struck a pillar and vaporized it.
Scorpina stepped from the shadows and placed her arms around Goldar. “You shouldn’t let him treat you like that, lover.”
Goldar narrowed his red eyes. “I don’t intend to.”
The five teens walked through the mountains outside of Angel Grove along with Maya and Simon. They were following a map left behind by Maya’s grandfather, one of the first victims of Bandora’s attacks. The rangers hoped to find answers wherever the map lead them. Answers about their powers. Their war. Bandora.
“I think we’re getting close,” Maya said.
Zack shook his head, out of breath. “Not close enough.”
“Oh come on, Zack,” Simon said as he hopped over to the teen. “This is fun.”
Kimberly smiled at the teen and younger boy. Zack looked over and smiled at her too. Jason wrinkled his brow at the brief exchange. He was not happy with the blooming relationship between Kimberly and Zack.
Nearby, Trini walked over to Billy. “You’ve been awfully quiet.”
Billy nodded. “I find it hard to believe that anything could be hidden in these mountains. This is a well explored and mapped out area.”
“According to what my grandfather left me,” Maya said, “only the chosen ones can find what we’re looking for.”
“And I bet that’s it” Jason pointed to a sleek-looking stone compound in the distance.
“Whoa!” Simon started to run towards the place.
“Simon wait!” Maya ran after him. The teens looked at each other for a moment, hesitantly, and then followed.
Bandora wrinkled her brow as she watched the teens through her crystal ball. “They’re trying to find Zordon…”
“Mistress…” Dragon Ranger kneeled behind Bandora. “Allow me to stop them.”
“No!” Goldar practically shouted. “The Green one has had his chance. He has failed you.”
“As if you haven’t,” Dragon Ranger spat back.
Bandora lifted her hand and struck them down with a purple energy pulse. “Enough! I’ll send down my rock soldiers.”
Bandora pulled out several cards from beneath her robes. She whispered an incantation that caused the cards’ runes and demonic symbols to glow with dark power. She finished the incantation with a shout and threw the cards towards Earth.
The teens were walking along with Simon and Maya when the gray rock soldiers appeared all around them. The red-eyed soldiers circled around with wobbly movements, probing for the best point of attack, measuring the size and defense of their new enemies.
“You two stay back,” Jason told Maya and Simon before he joined his team in fighting off the creatures.
Jason jumpkicked a soldier in the chest and smashed the creature across the head with the back of his fist. Another rock soldier came in from behind and swung a long gray arm blade towards the ranger. Jason rolled out of the way, but the blade cut across his back, drawing blood.
Jason rolled to his knees and pounced forward with a sidekick that slammed the soldier away.
Zack slammed an elbow against a soldier‘s midsection, then spun forward with a roundkick against its side. He finished the rock soldier off with a jumpkick upside the head.
A soldier moved in from the side and slammed a roundkick against Zack’s side. Zack snapped a sidekick and spinning sidekick combo that knocked the soldier back.
Billy flipped a soldier over his shoulder, using its own momentum against the grunt, and slammed the grunt to the ground. He slammed his foot against its neck, hoping the strike would be as effective on rock soldiers as it was on humans.
Kimberly flipped backwards while kicking a soldier upside the head. The villain’s body whipped backwards before crashing against the rocky ground.
Trini stood in front of Simon and Maya, protecting them from an incoming rock soldier. She slammed a palm-heel strike against a soldier’s face, spun forward, and slammed a knifehand blow against the back of the soldier’s neck.
After the last of the soldiers crumbled, the five rangers regrouped with Maya and Simon.
“Let’s get back on track,” Jason said.
The rangers moved on, and after several minutes, made their way to the base of the complex.
“Does your map say how we get inside?” Jason asked.
Maya nodded. “It says the five of you already have the keys.”
“Our Power Coins,” Billy said.
Jason nodded. They placed their coins in five slots on a nearby door. The doors slowly slid open with a loud, grinding noise.
They took their coins back and walked through the door. They found themselves inside a dimly-lit, neatly-polished stone chamber circled by columns, which gave the room an almost Egyptian-type feel. The walls and columns were etched with strange hieroglyphics none of the teens recognized. Control terminals, made of the same stone material, were arranged in a horseshoe pattern in the center of the room. The terminals had flat, brightly-colored control panels.
Billy walked towards the consoles, moving past a crystal globe near the center of the room. “Fascinating…”
“Don’t touch that! Ay-yi-yi!” an android suddenly walked in from the shadows. The android had a saucer-shaped head and stout body.
“It’s a robot!” Simon shouted with excitement and walked towards the android.
“Stay back, Simon,” Maya said protectively.
A projector at the front of the chamber suddenly hummed to life. A large, holographic head appeared above the projector. “Greetings, Rangers. I am glad you have found your way here.”
“Who are you?” Jason asked.
“I am Zordon of Eltar. This is my assistant, Alpha-5.”
“Eltar?” Zack asked. “So are you some kind of an…alien?”
“Whoa…” Simon whispered. “An alien.”
“I do come from a planet other than your own, yes,” Zordon said.
“How are you involved in all this?” Billy asked.
“In more ways than you can imagine,” Zordon said. “I am sure you all have many questions, so I will try to tell you all that I can.”
“Who’s this Bandora?” Jason asked.
“Where do our powers come from?” Billy asked.
“Who’s the weird-looking green guy?” Simon asked.
“How was my grandfather involved in all of this?” Maya asked.
“Ay-yi-yi!” Alpha said. “One at a time, please.”
“Perhaps if I start at the beginning…” Zordon said. “As you know, 1,700 million years ago, your world was populated by dinosaurs. What you do not know, was that there was a small ancient civilization that coexisted with the dinosaurs. They were a civilization of warriors that worshiped the ancient beasts as their Gods. They lived peacefully before the coming of DaiSatan, an evil being that I followed to your planet.
“DaiSatan recruited Bandora from one of the Earth’s tribes and used her to lead his army of evil. The Earth was thrown into chaos, until one day, the One Power sent down a group of armored mythological beasts to fight against Bandora. I assisted the tribes in gathering six warriors to draw power from these beasts and fight against Bandora. They became Zyuranger.
“After years of conflict, I defeated Bandora and imprisoned her within a pocket dimension beneath the moon‘s surface. Now I am afraid that she has been released, and only you can stop her.”
“I thought you said there used to be six of us?” Jason asked.
“The sixth Ranger was the Green Dragon Ranger who is now under the control of Bandora,” Zordon said.
“You mean he used to be one of the good guys?” Kimberly asked.
“Yes,” Zordon said. “His name was Burai.”
“Why’d he go all bad?” Simon asked.
“His father was the Black Knight of the Yamato Clan. The Black Knight attempted to overthrow the Yamato King, but failed. As punishment, the king took possession of the Black Knight’s infant son Geki and raised the boy as his own. But the Black Knight had an older son, Burai, who was 8-years-old. When the Black Knight went to war to retrieve his infant son, he was killed by the Yamato King as Burai watched. With his dying breath, the Black Knight made his child swear to uphold vengeance.
“Later, Geki and Burai were both chosen as Rangers. When Burai discovered that Geki was the adopted son of the Yamato King, Burai betrayed him and joined Bandora.
“Burai ended up taking his own life, and his Power Coin has remained in Bandora’s hands ever since.”
“So if this Burai isn’t the Dragon Ranger anymore,” Jason asked, “who is?”
“I am uncertain,” Zordon said.
“Speaking of the Power Coins,” Billy said, “how do they function?”
“Your Power Coin infuses your Body with the Life Energy of your Dinozord,” Zordon said. “Your coin also allows your Body to channel energy from the One Power, a force that people on your planet commonly refer to as magick. Your armor is stored in your bucklers and is energized by The Power.”
“So does Bandora use this Power as well?” Billy asked.
“Yes,” Zordon said. “The One Power turns the Gears of Fate and provides the balance between good and evil in the entire universe.
“Bandora is a witch, capable of channeling shadow energy from The Power to control demonic beasts. Her powers are limited, mostly reliant on runes and artifacts, so she can typically only control one demonic creature at a time.”
Zordon inclined his head towards the crystal sphere behind the rangers. “Please observe the Viewing Globe.”
The Rangers turned to the globe to see a fiery version of their planet. “This is what will happen to your world if you fail to defeat Bandora.”
The teens stared in silence, grim looks of determination on their faces.
Dragon Ranger stood on the rooftops and stared down at the city. Vengeance burned inside of him. “Soon, Rangers,” he said. “Soon.”
To be continued…Chapter Four