The Dragon’s Rise: Chapter Seventeen

The Scorpion’s Trap

 

Goldar stood alone in his dark chambers. He watched through a crystal ball as Tommy taught Simon a series of martial arts movements. Goldar tightened his grip on his sword and snarled his teeth. “Foolish boy…”

 

His mate Scorpina walked over to him. The warrior woman had a fiendish grin on her face. Her golden armor moved naturally across her body with each step. She wore the armor like a second skin.

 

She grabbed Goldar’s face and kissed him deeply. Goldar was taken aback. He was not used to such displays of affection. “What…?” he asked, his head in a daze.

 

“I have a delicious plan.” She kept her body pressed against the simian. “It will allow us to prove we are superior to Bandora…and we can get our revenge against Dragon Ranger at the same time.”

 

Goldar’s snout raised. A fang-filled smile crossed the Titan warrior’s lips. “I’m listening…”

 

***

 

Tommy and Kimberly sat at an outdoor coffee shop called the Daily Grind. The coffee shop was in the center of a wooded park filled with ornate sculptures and decorate fountains. The park was nestled in between towering skyscrapers in Angel Grove South.

 

“So where does your dad live?” Tommy asked after taking a sip of his pumpkin-spice latte.

 

Kimberly shrugged. “Who knows. I never hear from him. Hmph, I hardly hear from my mother. And I live with the woman.”

 

“I’m sorry,” Tommy said softly.

 

Kimberly glanced up at Tommy. She was eager to change the subject. “You never talk about your parents.”

 

Tommy sighed. “Well…I’m adopted.”

 

“Really?” Kimberly asked.

 

Tommy nodded. “Yeah. They took me in when I was about four, after my parents died.”

 

“Oh…” Kimberly said. “How did they…?”

 

Tommy shook his head. “I don’t know.”

 

Kimberly felt sympathy for him. There was so much pain inside Tommy. “That must be hard.”

 

Tommy shrugged. “That’s life, I guess. But anyway, my adopted parents are cool, I guess. And they have two kids: Chelsea, who’s my age exactly. Same birthday and everything. Then there’s Teddy, my little brother.”

 

Kimberly smiled. “Is that why you’re good with kids?”

 

Tommy blushed. “What do you mean?”

 

“I’ve seen you with Simon,” Kimberly said.

 

Tommy nodded. “I’m helping the kid out.”

 

Kimberly smiled. “I know.”

 

Their communicators toned. Tommy ran his hand along the wrist device. “I never realized how annoying this must have been for you…”

 

***

 

The six rangers walked through the woods just south of the city. The wide corridor of trees formed a natural border between Angel Grove and Stone Canyon.

 

“Well…” Jason said as he and the others looked around, searching for any sign of trouble. “I don’t see anything…”

 

“It could be a trap,” Tommy said. “Be careful.”

 

Rock soldiers suddenly leapt from the ground and pounced towards the rangers. The six teens struck back immediately, still managing to get their strikes in first despite the enemy’s element of surprise.

 

Tommy slammed a reverse sidekick against a soldier’s chest. He stepped forward and slammed the back of his fist across the grunt’s face, causing the soldier to stumble backward.

 

Jason jump kicked a soldier in the face. He stepped forward and slammed a double punch against that grunt’s chest, knocking the soldier backward. He turned to his left and blocked another soldier’s blow before round kicking the grunt in the side.

 

Billy flipped a soldier over his shoulder. The grunt slammed to the ground, and Billy leaned down, punching the fallen soldier in the chest. Billy moved to his left, keeping low as he swept another soldier’s legs out from beneath its body.

 

Trini launched forward with a flurry of kicks that bashed against a trio of soldiers. Each movement was fluid and graceful, along with efficient and deadly.

 

Kimberly backflipped while kicking a soldier upside the head. She landed and stepped forward, slamming an elbow against the soldier’s chest, sending the grunt tumbling backward.

 

Zack jump kicked a soldier in the face. The grunt was forced a few steps back as Zack pressed forward with a jumping roundkick that slammed against the soldier’s side and knocked the grunt over.

 

Through the corner of his eyes, Tommy noticed a humanoid scorpion monster shimmer into view. “That’s one of Scorpina’s pets,” he said as he reverse crescent kicked a rock soldier to the ground.

 

“Whatever it is,” Jason said, “we’re taking it out.” he sidekicked the final grunt away as he and the other rangers readied their morphers.

 

“Dino Buckler!” the six rangers shouted as they snapped their morphers open. Their Power Coins flashed with energy as light enveloped them, morphing them into their Ranger forms. They snapped into fighting stances.

 

“Mammoth Ranger, Black!”

 

“Tricera Ranger, Blue!”

 

“Ptera Ranger, Pink!”

 

“Tiger Ranger, Yellow!”

 

“Dragon Ranger, Green!”

 

“Tyranno Ranger, Red!”

 

“Battle Task Force…” They shouted together: “Power Rangers!”

 

The scorpion monster fired a volley of poisonous darts from various pores and holes in its body. The Rangers armed their blades and deflected each dart.

 

Dragon Ranger flipped through the air and slashed his blade down across the creature‘s chest with a burst of spark. Dragon Ranger slammed a sidekick against the scorpion and followed with a hook kick across the creature’s head.

 

The scorpion quickly grabbed Dragon Ranger by the neck and tightened its claws. The scorpion lifted the Green Ranger from his feet and tossed him backward, sending him arcing through the air towards a tree.

 

Dragon Ranger managed to somersault through the air and land his feet against the tree trunk, using it as leverage to leap back towards monster while unsheathing his Dragon Dagger.

 

“Dragon’s Claw!” He swung the blade, which emitted a bright wave of jade-colored energy that exploded against the monster and knocked it backward.

 

Dragon Ranger landed back on the ground and snapped into a fighting stance as the others regrouped around him. The scorpion creature hissed with anger while dragging itself back to its feet. The creature extended its claws and charged forward towards the six Rangers.

The scorpion slammed against the Rangers. It sprouted another pair of arms from its sides, swinging them outward in an ’x’ pattern that thrashed across Tyranno Ranger and Mammoth Ranger’s chests. The two Rangers were knocked backward as Tricera Ranger and Dragon Ranger moved in to attack.

 

Tricera Ranger swung a spinning heel kick towards the creature. The kick slammed against the scorpion’s head, but the monster retaliated with a quick slash from its claw. The claw sparked across the Ranger’s armor upon impact. Dragon Ranger dashed forward and slashed his dagger across the monster’s shell-like armor.

 

Dragon Ranger adjusted the dagger in his hand to strike again. Through the corner of his visor, he saw Scorpina standing in the midst of the foliage. She stepped behind a tree and vanished from sight.

 

“Scorpina!” Dragon Ranger shouted as he ran towards her direction.

 

“Tommy, wait!” Tyranno Ranger yelled, but before he could go after his green-armored friend, he was struck across the chest by one of the monster’s claws.

 

Dragon Ranger ran through the trees until a flash of light enveloped him. He vanished and reappeared in a desert-like area dotted with rugged mountains. “Whoa…” he said as he stopped in his tracks.

 

The eerie wind blew around him, sending a small cloud of dust that twirled across the ground like a miniature cyclone. A voice came from behind him. It was Goldar. “Welcome Dragon Ranger,” Goldar said as he readied his sword. “I’ve waited a long time for this…”

 

Dragon Ranger snapped into a fighting stance and held his Dragon Dagger forward. “I could say the same thing.”

 

The two opponents circled around each other. They shifted stances, analyzing each others’ defense for weaknesses.

 

Goldar snarled his teeth. “I was Bandora’s prize warrior…then you showed up. And how did you repay her? By betraying her!”

 

“She deserved worse,” Dragon Ranger snapped back. “And besides…you killed Shannon.”

 

Goldar smiled, revealing a mouth full of fangs. “”I’ve killed many people.”

 

Dragon Ranger tightened his grip on the Dragon Dagger. He screamed with rage and charged forward to attack. Dragon Ranger skipped ahead and swung his short blade downward. Their swords clashed against each other, sparking upon impact.

 

***

 

The scorpion creature opened its jaws and spat toxic venom that exploded against the Rangers’ armor with a shower of sparks. The Rangers fell to the ground.

 

“That venom…” Tricera Ranger said as he and the others tried to rise to their feet. “It’s burning through our armor.”

 

The scorpion pounced forward and thrashed against the Rangers’ armor. The creature reached forward with four pincers, grabbing Tyranno Ranger, Mammoth Ranger, Tricera Ranger, and Tiger Ranger by their necks.

 

Ptera Ranger leapt towards the monster’s back and cocked an arrow to shoot forward. The scorpion creature extended its tail, swatting the Pink Ranger from the air.

 

***

 

“Golden Flame!” Goldar fired a stream of molten-gold energy from his sword.

 

Dragon Ranger braced himself as the molten stream exploded around him. The Green Ranger’s chest shield absorbed most of the blast.

 

Dragon Ranger hopped through the blasts and armed his blade. “You’ll have to do better than that, Goldielocks!”

 

Goldar growled, snarled his teeth, and charged forward. He held his sword high. “I’ll kill you!”

 

“You’re welcome to try!” Dragon Ranger shouted as he dashed forward.

 

Dragon Ranger launched a spinning heel kick that Goldar ducked underneath. Goldar stood back to full height while swinging his blade upward, slashing diagonally across the Green Ranger’s chest.

 

Dragon Ranger spun with the blow to soften its sparking impact and sliced horizontally across the Titan warrior’s chest armor. Dragon Ranger followed with a sidekick against Goldar’s chest, and a sidekick against Goldar’s face.

 

***

 

Tyranno Ranger was thrown through the air and went splintering through a nearby tree trunk. The Red Ranger went tumbling across the ground.

 

“That’s it!” Tyranno Ranger rose to his feet and armed his Tyranno Sword. “Enough is enough. Let’s bring ‘em together guys!”

 

The five Rangers joined their weapons together. They formed the Power Blaster and aimed the cannon towards the scorpion creature.

 

“Power Blaster…Fire!” They fired a combined energy blast that streaked towards the scorpion monster. The blast ripped through the scorpion, causing its energy to overload and explode.

 

One of Bandora’s cards streaked through the skies and stabbed against the scorpion’s remains. The scorpion rippled with energy as it grew to its giant-sized form.

 

The five Rangers raised their hands towards the air. “Dinozords, arise!”

 

The five zords materialized and charged forward to attack the gigantic monster. The Rangers leapt into their cockpits.

 

“Dinozord fusion!” Tyranno Ranger shouted. The five zords shifted shape and merged into one armored warrior. The Megadinozord landed and snapped into a fighting stance.

 

Megadinozord stepped forward and slammed a pair of backfist blows against the monster’s chest. The creature stumbled backward as Megadinozord stepped forward, slamming a fist against the villain’s face.

 

The scorpion opened its jaw and spat toxic venom at Megadinozord. The venom exploded against the Megazord and knocked it backward. Sparks ripped across the Megazord’s armor.

 

The Megadinozord collapsed to the ground.

 

“We can’t get up,” Tiger Ranger said.

 

Tyranno Ranger clenched his jaw beneath his helmet. “Man, where’s Tommy?”

 

***

 

Dragon Ranger and Goldar continued their heated conflict. The Green Ranger pushed forward with a series of thrusts and swings, but Goldar parried each blow. The Titan pushed back and swung his blade down hard like an axe. Dragon Ranger stepped aside and slammed the end of his dagger’s handle against the warrior’s snout.

 

Goldar was taken aback as Dragon Ranger spun forward, jamming his dagger underneath Goldar’s chest armor, and puncturing through the simian’s thick skin. Dragon Ranger twisted the blade, opening the wound wider.

 

Goldar growled and took a few steps back in pain as blood seeped from his wounds. Dragon Ranger pressed on his attack.

 

“Dragon’s Blade!” Dragon Ranger swung his blade, which emitted a green energy wave that knocked Goldar backward. The simian fell back onto his knees from the violent impact of the explosion.

 

“Run away, Goldar,” Dragon Ranger said. “It’s what you’re good at.”

 

Goldar growled and kept a hand placed over his injury. “I will see you again, Ranger. Next time…I will be the victor!” He shimmered away.

 

***

 

The scorpion monster stalked towards the fallen Megazord. The creature came to a halt when the sound of the Dragon Dagger echoed through the air.

 

“Alright, Tommy!” Tyranno Ranger shouted.

 

The Dragonzord stomped through the streets. Dragon Ranger stood on the rooftops, commanding his zord to continue the charge. Dragonzord spun forward and whipped its tail across the creature. The zord dashed forward and slammed its head against the creature. The Dragonzord’s head blade cracked through the monster’s armor.

 

Dragon Ranger played a tune on his Dagger, commanding the Dragonzord to open fire with a missile barrage. The zord opened fire with its fingertip missiles, which exploded against the scorpion.

 

The Megazord rose back to its feet. The zord armed its double-edged saber. The blade crackled with crimson energy and prepared to deliver the final blow. “Megadinozord saber…Battle Crash!”

 

Megadinozord swung its saber downward. The sword ripped through the monster, causing the creature to stumble backward. Its energy overloaded and exploded with a massive sphere of flame.

 

***

 

Goldar leaned against the stone walls of his private chambers within Bandora’s palace. He nursed his wounds while watching Dragon Ranger through his viewing crystal. “I will kill you, Tommy…I will…”

 

To be continued…Chapter 18