Ultimate Gao Rangers: Chapter Ten

Father's Visit

 

Saiya sat alone in her room within Gao Rock. Each ranger had their own private space within the lair. She sat on a small chair, staring at the letter in her hand.

 

The letter was from her father.

 

He was coming to visit her.

 

Saiya folded the letter up but kept it in her hand. It seemed like forever since she saw him. Why was he coming? Was he going to try and talk her out of leaving college?

 

She sighed and leaned her head back against the wall.

 

***

 

Young Saiya walked into her father’s dojo later at night. She stopped in her tracks and gasped as she noticed her father lying on the ground with blood stains and slash marks across his kimono.

 

A dark shadow of a ninja crept forward from the shadows and aimed his katana towards Saiya’s head. Saiya noticed the lightning bolt symbol of the Ikkazuchi Way on the assailant’s shoulder.

 

Saiya pounced forward and grabbed the attacker’s wrist while twisting. She locked the villain’s arm into place and kicked the side of his knee, snapping his leg.

 

The assailant collapsed to the ground and quickly drove a knife through his own chest.

 

Saiya ran to her father’s side and knelt down next to him. His breathing was shallow and his heartbeat was growing weaker.

 

***

 

Simon stepped in and leaned against the stone doorway. “Hey, White,” he said. “The guys told me you’ve been in here for a while…is everything okay?”

 

Saiya shook her head and held up the letter. “This is from my father. He’s coming to visit me. Today.”

 

“Wow,” Simon said as he stepped inside. “That’s kind of short notice, isn’t it?”

 

“That’s the least of my problems…” she said. “I have no idea why he’s coming.”

 

“Well,” Simon said. “Maybe he misses you, or-”

 

“Red,” Saiya said quietly. “I don’t mean to be rude, but I just…I need to be alone right now. I‘m sorry.”

 

Simon’s face turned slightly red. “It’s okay, I…I understand.”

 

***

 

Highness Duke Shuten’ stood in the Org Nexus along with Toxica and Jindrax. The two Dukes stole an antique suit of samurai armor from a gift shop in Little Tokyo. The armor was on display in the center of the Nexus.

 

Toxica looked the suit of armor up and down before turning to Toxica and whispering. “What’s this for?”

 

Toxica shook her head. “A decoration?”

 

“Stand back,” Shuten’ said firmly as he extended his hand towards the armor. The eyes that covered his leathery body started to flicker with crimson light.    

 

Bubbling black slime started seeping from the ground. The slime started to steam, vaporizing into the stale air. The Nexus quickly reeked of death as the slime mist entered the samurai armor and started to bond with it.

 

Black energy shot from the armor like lightning as the suit started to take shape. The bulky armor filled with rotting flesh and bone as Samurai Org took shape, taking its first breath in with a slow hiss.

 

***

 

Saiya returned to her apartment and cleaned the place up. It wasn’t that she wanted to impress her father. She just wanted him to know that she was alright and doing well with her life.

 

“Why are you coming back…” she whispered as she wiped down a table.

 

***

 

Saiya sat at the side of her father’s hospital bed. He was slowly regaining consciousness. He narrowed his eyes when he realized where he was and tried to sit up, but pain that shot across his chest dissuaded him.

 

“How did I get here?” he asked weakly.

 

“I brought you here,” Saiya said. “I found you…wounded. And your attacker was close by. He killed himself after I caught him.”

 

Her father nodded, his eyes fixed on the ceiling.

 

“Father…this isn’t normal,” she said. “What are you involved in?”

 

“Nothing anymore,” he said. “Just forget what you saw.”

 

Saiya narrowed her eyes. “You almost died. What of they had attacked our home? What if they had attacked me?”

 

“That is why I teach you to fight,” he said. “Throughout your life, there will always be those who will seek you harm. These are dangerous times…”

 

“I deserve answers,” she said firmly. “Now tell me…”

 

Her father sighed reluctantly. He was too fatigued to argue.  “A select few who pass through the Ikkazuchi Way join a group of assassins that work under the shadow of the night. I was one of them when I was younger, but left after my first mission.

 

“The Ikkazuchi do not like deserters,” he continued. “They have sent many assassins over the years to try and kill me. They…caught me off guard this time.”

 

“Father…why didn’t you tell me?” Saiya asked.

 

Her father shook his head. “You should not have to worry about such things.”

 

“Then why,” Saiya practically pleaded. “How could you force me into a life of fighting when I want something different for myself?”

 

“For your protection,” her father said.

 

Saiya shook her head. “I don’t think that’s it…You can’t shelter me forever, father. I think the fact that we‘re here now proves that.”

 

Saiya got up and left.

 

***

 

It was almost time. Fifteen minutes to be exact. Saiya had cooked for her father and set the table. She gave her apartment one last look to make sure everything was perfect. She had to prove to her father that her decision to leave was the right one.

 

Her G-Phone tined. Saiya sighed and reached for her morpher. “Not now…”

 

***

 

Samurai Org stalked through the city streets. He chopped through cars and buildings with his katana, sending vehicles smashing against each other and debris tumbling onto citizens who ran for their lives.

 

“Come out, Gao Ranger!” the villain shouted as he slit through a car’s gas tank, causing the vehicle to explode.

 

“Be careful what you ask for!” a voice shouted from behind. The villain turned to see Simon and the other rangers arrive at the scene.

 

The rangers flipped open their morpher.

 

“Wild Access! Ha!” Their armor energized and wrapped around their bodies and they morphed into their Ranger forms. They immediately armed their individual weapons.

 

“Let’s go!” Gao Red shouted as they dashed forward to attack.

 

Gao Yellow leapt through the air towards his opponent.

 

“Eagle Sword!” he shouted while holding the blade high. He swung the weapon down towards the monster while landing.

 

Samurai Org blocked the blow and twisted his wrist while slapping the blade away. Pressing forward, the monster twisted his wrist and backhand slashed across the Yellow Ranger’s armor, the sword sparking on impact. Samurai Org snapped a spinning heel kick that smashed against Gao Yellow’s chest, knocking the Ranger off his feet and sending him flying backward.

 

The Yellow Ranger crashed against the ground, smoke still rising from his armor.

 

***

 

Saiya’s father, Taiga Daigo, knocked on his daughters apartment door. He was dressed in a business suit and carried a leather briefcase in hand. He knocked again, but no one answered.

 

He reached for the door handle and turned. The door was unlocked, so he let himself in.

 

He set his briefcase aside and looked around the spotless room. He noticed a table set with Chinese food, his favorite. A note was next to a bowl rice. Mr. Taiga picked up the note and read it. It was from Saiya, explaining that she had to run, but would return.

 

Mr. Taiga set the note down and sighed. He picked up a pair of chop sticks and filled his plate. He took a bite, and was pleasantly surprised at his daughter’s ability to cook. He decided to ditch the plate and eat straight from the bowl.

 

***

 

The Ranger scattered around the monster to attack, but Samurai Org was too quick. With a series of strikes and backhand swings, the monster slashed its blade across Gao Black, Gao Blue, Gao White and Gao White.

 

Gao Red pounced forward and swung his Lion Fang downward, but the villain parried the blow and swung his sword around to slash the Red Ranger across the chest. The katana sparked on impacted and whipped Gao Red’s body backward. The Red Ranger went tumbling across the ground.

 

Gao Red rolled into a crouched position and separated the fang so that one half was over each hand. The Red Ranger pounced forward like a lion, but the villain swung his sword and slashed Gao Red from the air, sparks igniting on impact as the Red Ranger crashed against the ground.

 

Samurai Org energized his saber with blue-tinted power. The villain slowly moved his sword through a circle pattern before slashing downward in an x-pattern. The energized slashed streaked with power and sparked against the Rangers’ armor, knocking them off their feet.

 

***

 

Mr. Taiga had his jacket over the chair. He walked into the main room and lifted a picture from the counter. The picture was a group shot of Saiya and the other rangers. Ryan had his arms crossed and looked less-than thrilled, Timothy was leaning on Michael’s shoulder, and Simon was standing next to Saiya.

 

The building suddenly shook as a thundering explosion sounded in the distance. Mr. Taiga was at the window in an instant, looking out as the flames from the Rangers’ battle in the distance.

 

Explosions erupted with massive bursts of flame and smoke, shockwaves smashing against the Rangers and sending them flying off their feet before crashing against the ground.

 

The Rangers regrouped and slowly rose to their feet as Samurai Org stalked towards them.

 

Taiga ran onto the scene and watched from the cover of a nearby pillar. He looked towards the distance and saw the Rangers and Org circle around each other.

 

The villain leaned forward and fired jagged blasts of purple-tinted energy that exploded against the Rangers with bursts of spark.

 

Gao White rolled across the ground before springing through the air like a tiger towards the villain. The White Ranger armed her Tiger Baton and swung the weapon downward.

 

But Samurai Org blocked the blow and kicked Gao White in the chest, knocking her from the air.

 

Samurai Org laughed mockingly and stalked towards the fallen White Ranger. “You’re making this too easy. I expected at least a small challenge…”

 

Gao White slowly rose to her feet and snapped into a crouched fighting stance, holding her arms out in a pose that resembled the tiger.

 

Nearby, Taiga narrowed his eyes as he watched the White Ranger. Fighting styles were like finger prints, and he recognized Gao White’s print too well. It was his daughter.

 

***

 

Saiya stood in the dojo, facing her father just a few weeks after his release from the hospital.

 

“I will make you a deal,” he said as he held a wooden sword in hand. “If you can stop my sword from hitting you…you are free to leave.”

 

“And if the sword hits me?” she asked.

 

“Then you stay,” he said.

 

Saiya knew this was the closest she would come to getting permission to leave. She had to do it. “Fine.”

 

Saiya slowly snapped into a crouched fighting stance, holding her arms out in a pose that resembled the tiger.

 

Saiya’s father swung his sword downward. Saiya lifted her hands to catch the sword by its side, but the weapon slipped past her hands and snapped against her head.

 

Her heart sank.

 

“It’s settled,” he said as he tossed the sword aside.

 

***

 

Saiya sat alone in her quiet room. The door slowly creaked open as her father walked in.

 

“Saiya…” he said quietly as he stood in the doorway. His hand reached for the scar from his wound. “I want you to go. Leave this place and go to school.” 

 

Saiya couldn’t believe what she was hearing. Had the most stubborn man she knew changed his mind?

 

“You were right,” he said. “I cannot keep you here forever…”

 

He had a strong look of disappointment on his face as he stepped out and shut the door.

 

***

 

Gao White stood still as Samurai Org charged towards her. The villain chopped his blade towards her head. But Gao White caught the sword and twisted the weapon downward.

 

The White Ranger slammed her elbow against the weapon, snapping it in half.

 

Gao White armed her baton and thrashed it across the villain’s armor repeatedly, forcing the villain backward. The White Ranger started spearing her baton against the creature, pushing the villain back with her every step.

 

Mr. Taiga smiled with pride as his daughter’s weapon thrashed across the villain, sparking with every impact.

 

Samurai Org extended his sword and fired tendrils of crimson energy at the White Ranger. Gao White ran around the villain like a tiger, dodging the energy blasts as they exploded around her.

 

Gao White sprang through the air and energized her baton with pink-tinted white power.

 

“Tiger Baton! Cross Strike!” She swung her baton down in a cross pattern that streaked with pink energy. The strike exploded against the villain with a burst of sparks, knocking him off his feet.

 

The Rangers regrouped and assembled their long Gao Blade by combining their weapons as Samurai Org rose back to his feet.

 

“Gao Blade!” they shouted as the blade energized with fiery golden power.

 

See ya!” Gao Red shouted to the creature.

 

They chopped the energized blade downward. The golden blade extended while chopping through the Org, tearing its body apart, ripping through rotted flesh, armor and bone. The monster fell backward, its energy overloading and exploding, producing a shockwave that decimated the monster into nothing more than a boiling puddle of slime.

 

Stepping forward as if from nowhere, Toxica extended the end of her staff downward as it slid open like an iris, shooting out a dozen black seeds. Toxica started to scream a chant as the seeds rooted in the ooze remains. “Oniah-sha-shee! Kua-ta-to!”

 

Thick vines shot up from the ooze, extending as high as a skyscraper. The vines started to mesh together while twisting and thrashing back and forth. The vines formed a giant-sized version of a reborn Samurai Org.

 

The Rangers unsheathed their Gao Daggers and extended the blades into the sky. “Wildzords, descend!”

 

The daggers’ enchanted melody reached the sky island and summoned the Power Animals. Gaorilla, GaoBear, GaoPolar, GaoBison, and GaoEagle descended on a bridge of light and charged into battle.

 

The Rangers stood in a circle and thrust their daggers towards the center. Gao Red looked up while making a claw with his left hand over the right side of his chest. “Wildzords! Assemble!”

 

Gaorilla leapt through the air and streaked forward through a tunnel of energy. The green-armored zord shifted shape and formed a muscular chest that GaoBear and GaoPolar attached too. GaoBison formed the legs and waist, and GaoEagle wrapped around the bison head as if a belt buckle. An armored helmet flipped up from the body as the transformation completed.

 

The Rangers entered their cockpit and placed their daggers into slots on the stations in front of them. “MegaKongazord!” they shouted. “GaoMuscle!”

 

Samurai Org armed a small gun and opened fire with a volley of pellets that exploded around GaoMuscle. The Megazord walked through the blasts as it approached Samurai Org.

 

“Double Knuckle!” the Rangers shouted. “Vital Slash!”

 

The zord energized its bear knuckle and swung a punch that streaked forward with fiery energy. The strike sparked against the monster on impact. GaoMuscle energized his polar knuckle and swung a punch that streaked icy energy. The strike sparked against the monster on impact.  

 

The villain stumbled backward, and the Rangers readied for the final blow.

 

“GaoMuscle!” they shouted. “Bear strike, fire!”

 

The bears’ jaws opened and pointed towards the Org monster. The bears fired simultaneously, a beam of sub-zero energy and a second beam of fiery power. The blasts punctured through the villain’s armor with massive explosions that tore the monster’s body apart. The creature let loose a final groan of pain before his entire body erupted into fiery chunks of slime and flesh that vaporized from the double knuckle blast’s power.

 

***

 

Saiya returned to her apartment that evening to find her father gone. To her surprise, he had left her a note on the kitchen table.

 

The note said that he had to leave, but was very proud of her. It mentioned that he worried about her while he was at the dojo. The last line read: I am sorry I was never there for you as a father should be. I am very proud of you, my Belle Tiger, Saiya.

 

***

 

Saiya set foot on her college campus and took a deep breath of fresh air. She was finally on her own, in a place where she could discipline her mind instead of her body.

 

She did not notice a pair of eyes watching her from the rooftop of a building. The stranger was clad in all black, and had the patch of the Ikkazuchi School on his arm.

 

The assassin armed his short dagger.

 

To be continued…Chapter Eleven