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The ShadowLands

Friends In Need
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Disclaimer: I don't own the Wild Force Rangers or the Time Force Rangers.

Friends In Need

by Jennifer Collins

Taylor watched as Princess Shayla paced the grounds of the Animarium, nervously wringing her hands. The tense energy emanating from the Wild Force mentor was not lost on Taylor, who sat stiffly at the table. "They'll be here soon."

The words had barely gotten out of the Yellow Ranger's mouth when the other four Rangers came bustling into the room. "Princess Shayla!" Alyssa called. "What's so urgent?"

"Yeah. Why'd you call a meeting so early?" Max wondered aloud.

The princess rested her hands on the table and leaned closer to the team. "Rangers. I'm afraid the world is in grave danger." She paused for a second, and her eyes met Taylor's.

"Danger from what?" Cole prompted softly.

"There's an evil mutant named Skar," Shayla explained. "He's much tougher than any org you've ever faced. He's a hunter."

"A mutant hunter?" Max asked skeptically. "But there are no more mutants left on Earth."

Princess Shayla continued, "Skar comes from the year 3002. He's escaped from the future into our time, and he's brought his own personal collection of weaponry. We don't have the technology of a thousand years on our side. I believe that if you work together, you can catch him, but it will be extremely difficult. This mutant is very dangerous, and I fear for your lives."

Cole looked from one Ranger to the next. The fearful expression on Danny's face matched his own, and for once, Max was silent. Taylor's brow was furrowed in deep concentration. Cole studied Alyssa. She didn't seem to be as disturbed as the others, in fact, she was almost calm.

Alyssa looked up and caught Cole watching her. He quickly turned away, and after a moment, she spoke up. "I think I may have an idea," she said.

The Princess rushed to her, and her eyes widened hopefully. Taylor cocked her head in interest.

"I know where we can find someone who can help us build futuristic weapons," Alyssa confided. "Come on!"

*****************************************************************************

"Get those feet off that desk!" The co-leader of the Silver Guardians was answered with laughter from his partner.

"Okay, okay. Sorry!" Wes apologized. "Geez, what's got you so uptight?" When there was no response, he snatched the papers that Eric was studying right out of his hands. "What are you doing, anyway?" he asked, settling down on the couch that lay alongside Eric's desk.

Eric sighed as he took a seat in his chair. "If you must know, I'm trying to get some work done."

Wes rolled his eyes.

Eric clenched his teeth. "These reports have got to get to your father," he reminded Wes irritatedly.

Wes dismissed the explanation with a wave, very much like his father's mannerisms. "Already done," he said.

Eric blinked. "What?"

Wes shrugged. "I finished them and took them to my dad this morning."

Eric eyed Wes almost disbelievingly. "I'm impressed," was all he said before looking down and getting back to business.

Wes grinned, pleased at his compliment.

Eric cleared his throat. "So.... where were you last night? Did you take my advice?"

Wes's face fell. "Yeah. I don't know, Eric. I just don't think I can...... I mean, I'm not ready......."

Eric looked up. "Nicole is a very nice girl. Besides, I thought you two just went to the movies. How can you judge her by how she watches a movie?"

"I know she's nice. She's great, really. It's just..... well, we went to see a western," Wes explained.

Eric didn't catch on. "So? Isn't that your favorite?" he asked, raising his eyebrows.

Wes nodded. "Yeah, it is." He paused before adding quietly, "Jen would never have gone to a western with me."

Eric opened his mouth to reply, but was interrupted by the buzz of his intercom. He offered an apologetic look to his partner before tapping a button. "Go ahead, Shirley."

"There's a girl here to see you, Mr. Myers," his secretary said.

"Well, you can tell her I'm busy," Eric replied. "Have her make an appointment."

There was silence on the other end for a few seconds before Shirley spoke again. "She insists on seeing you now, sir. Says it's important."

Eric sighed. "Who is it?"

"Do you know an Alyssa Enrile?"

Eric's eyes grew wide. "Send her in," he said in an authoritative tone.

"She's with four other people, sir."

"Send them in too."

"Yes, sir." Shirley closed the communication link.

Wes leaned back against the couch. "So who's Alyssa?" he asked innocently.

Eric looked away from him. "Just a girl. She used to live across the street from me." He didn't say anything else until they heard a knock at the door. "Come on in," he called.

The door swung open, and five people with intense expressions entered the office. A small girl with short brown hair shook hands with Eric. "Hello, Eric. I'd like to introduce you to my friends. This is Taylor, and that's Cole, Max, and Danny."

Eric nodded to the group. "What can I do for you?"

The blonde girl stepped in front of the others. Wes noticed that she seemed to be the ring leader. "We need your help, sir. We're looking for a Mr. Wesley Collins."

Wes stood up. "That would be me," he said. The people regarded him with surprised expressions, as if they'd only then noticed that he was in the room.

"It is him!" Alyssa exclaimed. "I recognize him from his picture in the paper."

Wes smiled a little. "How can we be of service to you?" he asked gently.

"Our city is under attack," Taylor informed them. "We understand that you could provide us with the resources necessary to increase our weapon supply."

She had the attention of both leaders of the Guardians, and their concern was unmasked as they listened to her request. She paused and exchanged uncertain looks with Danny, Max, and Alyssa. Cole stepped forward and placed a supporting hand on Taylor's arm. He nodded his encouragement.

"We're the Wild Force Power Rangers," she quietly revealed.

Wes's jaw dropped slightly, and he listened to the team's story in open-mouthed shock. Eric kept his arms folded across his chest. "Where did this mutant hunter come from?" he asked, wondering inwardly why this was the first they'd heard about it.

"He escaped from the future," Cole explained. "More specifically, the year 3002."

Wes's head snapped up. His heart pounded in his ears, and his eyes took on a faraway look, as if he was seeing something the others couldn't quite comprehend. When he finally came back to Earth, he got the impression that Taylor had been trying to capture his attention. "So will you help us?" She asked, just a little bit impatiently.

Wes met Eric's eyes briefly and knew that they were in agreement on this one. "Of course we'll help you," he replied. He pulled back the sleeve of his jacket and revealed his chronomorpher. "We never turn our backs on friends in need."