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The ShadowLands

Shattered Dreams
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Disclaimer: The Power Rangers will always be property of Saban.

Author's Note: I have no idea where this came from! It was supposed to be a Cassie/TJ fic, but, well it's not. Read on and you will understand. I wrote this a long time ago, and I just found it. I thought I'd share it with all of you. Let me know what you think. You can reach me at: Shadowcat@powerrangerslostgalaxy.zzn.com

Shattered Dreams

by: Jennifer Collins

"She's so cute," TJ said to his best friend Carlos, showing him a picture.

"Uh- huh." Carlos took the picture from TJ and studied it for a moment. Cassie Chan's smiling face stared up at him. Her brown eyes resembled littled lighted- up crescent moons, and she was scrunching her nose up in an attractive way that only she could pull off.

In the photo, her arms were thrown around TJ's neck and his smile was from ear to ear. Carlos, Ashley, and Andros were also in the picture.

Carlos smiled. "Why don't you just ask her out, man? She probably would say yes. You guys are friends."

"Yeah, but I'd like to be more."

"Give her time, take her out on a few dates, kiss her, you'll grow into more. It's not like you're afraid or anything, right?"

"Well, actually......yeah, I guess I am."

Carlos rolled his eyes. "Give me a break. She's just a girl."

TJ raised his eyebrows. "Just a girl? No, Cassie Lee Chan is not just a girl, she's..........she's.........."

"Right here," Carlos whispered as Cassie walked in. "Hey, Cass."

"Hi, you guys. I'm on my way out."

"Big date?" TJ asked.

"No, just shopping with Ashley." Cassie smiled. She wants to buy something nice to impress Andros."

Carlos looked away. TJ squeezed his shoulder sympathetically.

"Well, see ya later," Cassie said with a wave.

"Bye," TJ called. He watched her walk away. Carlos jumped into his bed and rolled over onto his stomach.

"I think you should hurry up and ask her out before Lenny does or she remembers the Phantom Ranger or something," he said, flipping through a sports magazine.

"Maybe you should invite Ashley along and we can do a double date sort of thing," TJ said.

Carlos closed the magazine. "Nah, it's over between me and Ash. She wants Andros now."

"I'm sorry, buddy."

"It's okay," Carlos said. "There are plenty of other girls."

"Good attitude. So you really think I should ask Cassie out?"

Carlos looked up. "Yeah. You know, I think she might have, well, she kinda has a crush on you."

"Really?"

"Yeah. I was talking to her last week, and don't tell her I said this, but I mentioned your name and she blushed."

TJ smiled, picturing the thought. "How'd she look, did she do that cute little thing she always does when she laughs?"

Carlos threw a pillow at him. "You need to get a life."

* * *

"Time to wake up, Carlos." The gentle, woman- like voice of the ship's DECA roused Carlos at 7 am the next morning. "Yeah, sure," he mumbled. He put his long, dark hair into a rubber band and pulled on a black T- shirt and jeans. He blindly made his way to the door of his room, while rubbing his eyes.

Just then, the door flung open, nearly hitting him in the face.

"Oooh, I'm so sorry," Cassie apologized, stepping into the room. She stumbled into his chest.

"No problem." Carlos yawned. He gently steadied her. "So what's up?"

"Oh, nothing. The others told me to come and see if you were awake."

Carlos laughed. "Tell them not yet."

Cassie swatted him playfully. "You tell them yourself."

"Kay. Let's go." He headed for the door at the same time she did. They tried to squeeze through the door. Cassie giggled. Carlos laughed. "Ladies first," he said.

"Why, thank you," she replied, walking away. She didn't get very far. "You're stepping on my shoelace," she said.

"Sorry, here let me help." The two bent down at the same time. Their heads banged into one another. They both burst out laughing. "Ow," Cassie said. She looked up............into Carlos' deep, dark eyes. She leaned in closer and kissed him softly on the lips. Carlos' first reaction was to pull away. "Uh, Cassie................"

She didn't know why, but she kissed him again, this time more deeply. Carlos knew it was wrong to steal someone he knew his best friend wanted more than anything, but he couldn't help responding to the kiss.

* * *

TJ walked quickly down the hall. He stepped through the doorway of Carlos' room. "Hey, when are you guys gonna-" He stopped in midsentence, gazing at Carlos and Cassie kissing in a hot embrace. His expression was one of hurt and betrayal. He leaned his head against the wall and closed his eyes to gather himself for a moment. Then he ran down the hall and into his own room in a rage.

"There are plenty of other girls," Carlos had said. So why did he have to take Cassie?