Special thanks to: Stephanie (White Time Ranger) for letting me use her idea of Sky being Wes and Jen’s son. And also thanks for letting me use ‘Tate’ as Sky’s nickname! (I definitely couldn’t come up with an idea to explain Sky’s last name.) Everyone, be sure to check out her stories as they are positively awesome!
Thanks to everyone who reviewed! All the comments meant a lot to me! I hope you all enjoy this chapter.
The rest of
the week passed by very slowly for
Finally, Saturday rolled around and Syd had spent most of her morning shopping for the perfect outfit and shoes. After two hours of searching, Syd found the prettiest pink sundress and had immediately fallen in love with it. She grinned happily. It was perfect, not too formal but not informal either. Paying for the dress, she headed towards the shoe store. Finding the shoes that were perfect for dancing, she paid for them and headed in the direction of the nail salon. She wanted to look perfect.
Late that afternoon, Syd finally finished getting ready. She smiled in satisfaction as she observed her image. ‘Yup, I’m going to knock his socks off!’
Z walked into the room, with an apple in hand. The yellow ranger stopped short at the sight of her friend all dressed up. Her eyes widened. “Whoa, where are you going?”
Syd grinned as she twirled in front of her mirror. “Dancing.”
Z nodded. Finishing her apple, she headed over to her dresser. “Well, you look awesome. I’m going to take a shower. Have fun Syd.”
The bathroom door slammed shut as Syd finished getting ready. As she was about to slip on her shoes, there was a knock at her door. The pink ranger felt her heart flutter and she smiled. ‘Just in time!’
“Syd?” Sky’s voice was muffled by the door.
“Give me a minute Sky!” Syd called as she rushed to get her shoes on. Quickly grabbing her purse, Syd pressed the button that commanded the door to slid open. Grinning, she enjoyed the look she received from Sky.
The blue ranger stared. Stunned, words couldn’t form as he stared at his teammate. How had she managed to make herself appear ten times more attractive? Sky swallowed, and then grinned. He could tell it was going to be an interesting night. He was sure that he had the best looking date already.
“Wow, this is
a pretty nice place Sky,” Syd observed as she and Sky entered the large
ballroom-like restaurant. The ceiling had dark blue wallpaper covering it and
was painted so that it looked like they were dancing under stars. The pink
ranger clutched to Sky’s arm as she watched the various people moving around on
the dance floor. Despite her nervousness,
“The evening is usually split into three parts. The beginning is usually for what they call ‘relaxing dancing’. That’s when everybody and anybody can dance,” Sky explained as he led them through the crowd to a table reserved just for them. “The second part of the evening is the competition/dinner. What happens is that the judges, whom are watching the people dance, will choose fifteen couples to compete against each other, while the remaining people sit down to eat and watch the competition. The top three couples of the competition will win some nice prizes.”
“Cool!” Syd paused, “What kind of prizes?”
The blue ranger shrugged. “Couldn’t tell ya. It’s different every year.”
“What about the third part of the evening?”
“Oh, that time is ‘relaxing dancing’ again. It gives time for the judges to decide the best couples of the competition and it gives a chance for the competitors to relax and grab something to eat, while the people that were sitting down can go dance again if they want too.”
“Cool!” Syd remarked once more.
“Well,” Sky glanced at Syd. “Do you want to dance?”
The pink ranger raised an eyebrow. “Do you even have to ask? Let’s go!”
The next hour whizzed by as the blue and pink rangers danced their hearts out. Sydney was having the time of her life, the evening was turning out better than she could’ve ever imagined. And it looked to her that Sky was having a pretty good time too. As the song was finishing up, an elderly woman approached them.
“Hello,” the woman smiled pleasantly, clutching a clipboard. “I’m Edna Wayne.”
Sky and Syd smiled back. “Hello.”
“Are you enjoying your evening?”
Sydney nodded enthusiastically. “Very much!”
The woman gave another gentle smile. “Excellent. Would you two like to participate in our competition?”
Syd froze and a million thoughts ran through her mind. Seeing the pink ranger’s hesitation, Sky quickly replied to Edna’s question. “We would love too.”
Syd looked alarmed as Edna looked pleased. “Names please?”
“Sky Tate and Sydney Drew.”
The elderly woman scribbled their names down and handed Sky a large badge to be pinned to his back. “Alright, you two are number 7. The competition starts in thirty minutes. Good luck!” She walked away.
Syd rounded on Sky as soon as the woman was out of earshot. “Are you crazy?”
The blue ranger looked bewildered. “What? I thought you wanted to dance?”
“I do but-“ Syd paused, suddenly feeling silly. What was she so afraid of?
As if Sky knew what she was thinking, he rubbed her arms in an attempt to calm her down. “Relax, we’re here to have fun remember? We don’t have anything to lose.”
Syd blinked. He was right. They were there to have fun. Boy, for an uptight guy, Sky sure knew how to let loose when he wanted too. The pink ranger grinned. “Alright, let’s do it.”
Sky patted her hand. “There’s the Syd I know. Who cares what others think? Just follow my lead.”
The thirty minutes passed by very quickly and soon the competition started. Syd and Sky watched as groups 1 to 5 went out first. The music started and almost immediately there were series of fast paced motions on the dance floor.
The pink ranger was getting nervous. All of them danced so well, she and Sky had never practiced any of the dances together. Heck, she didn’t even know which dances Sky knew the steps too. What if she tripped and fell? She quickly forced the thought out of her mind. She was there to have fun. There was no use in getting paranoid about it.
Syd’s heart pounded with anticipation as she saw that their number was about to be called. ‘Here goes nothing!’
Edna stood up at the microphone. “Okay, numbers 6 to 10, your dance will be to the Cha-Cha-Cha.”
Syd let out a sigh of relief. She knew how to dance to the Cha-Cha-Cha.
Sky grinned. “You ready?”
She nodded and grinned back, her smile wasn’t as confident as Sky’s. “Ready.”
A moment later, the music began and Sky began leading. Syd was surprised to feel her body relax and immediately began following the blue ranger’s lead with ease. Step after step, twist after twist, turn after turn, each of their dance moves flowed together, moving in time with the upbeat melody. Syd had forgotten about the competition and the audience and just focused on Sky. It was as if they were the only ones in the room, his touch made her see things clearer but at the same time blinded her… she loved him so much…
All of a sudden, she was aware of the beaming smile on her face and of the loud applause. The pink ranger blinked. They had finished the dance already? Sky turned to her, breathing heavily. He grinned. “See? I told you we would be fine.”
Sydney laughed. “Thanks for signing us up Sky! That was so much fun! Think we’ll make second round?”
The blue ranger shrugged as they walked off the dance floor. “We’ll find out in a few minutes.”
They sat on the bench provided as groups 11 to 15 went up. Sky grabbed two water bottles from a nearby refreshment table and passed one to Syd. Sitting in silence, they watched as the competition started on the dance floor.
Syd held her breath as the judges named the contestants that would compete in round two.
She was starting to lose hope.
The pink ranger crossed her fingers. She had no clue why she wanted to be in the competition so much.
Whoosh. She was able to breath again as she heard their number being called. Sydney squealed and turned to Sky. “We did it Sky!” she cheered happily. The pink ranger was so excited that she hugged the blue ranger without a second thought. Syd grabbed his hand and began to pull him out onto the dance floor to join the other competitors. Sky smiled, seeing her so excited and followed willingly.
This time they were in the first group that was called to perform. A man walked on to the stage, he was obviously one of the judges for the night’s events. Standing in front of the microphone, he waited till the applause died down before speaking. “Alright, congratulations numbers 5, 10, 7, 12 and 3 for making it to the second round. Your next dance will be the Jive, also known as the swing dance. Good luck!”
Sky and Syd’s eyes locked. Syd grinned, feeling very confident about this round. She knew they could nail this dance.
And nailed it they did.
They danced with the same intensity, the same determination, and the same undeniable chemistry as before. By the time the music was over, both were grinning in satisfaction, confident that they would make the third and final round.
They were proved right.
Sky and Syd beamed proudly as they were called out first.
“Number 7! Number 5! Number 13! Number 2! And Number 10! Ladies and Gentlemen, the 5 finalists for this dance competition!”
The five groups headed out on to the dance floor. The man that had just announced them waved his hands, signaling the applause to stop. “Alright,” the man continued, “Congratulations to these ten people out on the dance floor. As you know, Kathy Robinson has been hosting these Dance Galas for years and now she would like to say a few words. Please welcome Mrs. Kathy Robinson!”
Another elderly woman came onto the stage as everyone began clapping. Sky immediately recognized her; after all, she was the one that had taught him how to dance. She was tall and very slim –probably from all the years of dance she had done. There was a very motherly presence around her and she had a kind smile on her face. “Good evening everyone! I see a lot of our regulars,” Kathy’s eyes traveled around the room and then rested on Sky and Syd. She winked at Sky knowingly, “as well as some fresh new faces!”
Sky smiled and gave a slight nod.
“As most of you know, every year we give out prizes to the top three dance partners. This year, here is what the top three winners will receive:
Third place winners will receive $600 gift certificate each for a shopping spree at New Tech City Mall, and tickets to a concert of their choice.”
Syd’s eyes widened. “Wow, I like that prize!”
Sky smirked. “Of course you would.”
“Second place winners will receive a 5 day, all expenses paid, vacation to Victoria Beach just outside of New Tech City, tickets to see the Broadway play ‘Cats’ and $900 gift certificate each for a shopping spree at New Tech City Mall.”
“Wow, that’s EVEN better!”
Sky rolled his eyes in amusement.
“And first place winners will win a two week vacation, all expenses paid, destination of their choice. They will also compete in the Universe Dance Competition, and receive $1500 spending money.”
“Wow!” The pink ranger turned to her teammate. “You weren’t kidding when you said that there were some good prizes!”
“And we actually have a shot at snagging one of the prizes,” Sky reminded her.
“Alright,” Kathy continued, “This part of the competition is a little different from the first two rounds. In this round, it will be just you and your partner. First up, number 13!”
Walking over to sit down at the bench, Sky looked at the pink ranger and reached out to grab her hand. Giving it a slight squeeze, the blue ranger smiled. “We’ll be fine.”
Syd felt her heart beat rapidly, partly from the anticipation of the competition and mostly from Sky holding her hand. She nodded.
Sydney let out a shaky breath. “That’s us.”
“Come on,” Sky pulled her out onto the dance floor and they stood in front of the judges.
Kathy smiled, seeing her former student. “Number 7, you will dance to the Salsa.”
Both rangers nodded and got into position. “Relax,” Sky whispered, seeing how tense Syd was, “you know the steps, just follow my lead.”
Syd relaxed a tiny bit.
Sky looked at her. “You trust me don’t you?”
It was all she needed. The pink ranger smiled and nodded. She was there to have fun. Who cared if they didn’t win? She was with Sky and that was all that mattered.
The music started and immediately they began to move to the fast paced rhythm. Moving in time to the beat, Syd barely had time to think as Sky led her through the steps. Every twist, every turn, every dip left her breathless and all she could concentrate on was Sky. She was disappointed when the music came to a stop, it seemed like it had just started!
The pair was met with a silence before a thunderous applause sounded. The rangers beamed, took a bow and walked off the dance floor.
Sky led Syd over to the table that had been reserved for them and they both sat down, looking forward to the dinner awaiting them. All that dancing had worked up an appetite and they were extremely hungry.
“Did you have fun?” The blue ranger asked as she took a bite of the chicken on his plate.
The pink ranger grinned enthusiastically. “I had a blast!” She took a sip of her water. “I’m really glad we came.”
‘Me too.’ Sky smiled. “Even if we don’t win anything?”
“Even if we don’t win anything,” she confirmed. “Did you have fun?”
“I had a great time Syd.”
The two finished their dinner and spent the next forty minutes talking comfortably. The lights dimmed and the music softly came to a stop. Kathy Robinson came out on stage with an envelope in hand. “Okay everybody, I’m sure you’re all dying to find out who won those awesome prizes right? Drum roll please! Here are this year’s winners…..”
The red, green and yellow rangers were seated in the Recreation Room eating breakfast the next morning. Both Jack and Z paid no attention as Bridge flipped open the daily newspaper that the Academy had provided.
Bridge’s eyes widened with surprise. “Whoa, what is this?”
Z took a bite of her pancake and leaned over the green ranger’s shoulder. “What’s up?” A moment later, she was also stunned into silence.
By now, Jack was very curious. “What is it?”
There was no response.
The red ranger tried again. “Guys?”
“Come on guys, don’t keep me in suspense. What’s in the paper that’s so interesting?”
Wordlessly, Bridge handed the newspaper to Jack. The red ranger took the paper and read the headline.
“ ‘Annual Dance Competition, the Best it’s Ever Been?’ ” Jack looked up. “That’s what got you guys all speechless?” The red ranger rolled his eyes and returned to his breakfast. “You two are so weird.”
Z shook her head as if to shake off her shock. “Look at the picture you dork!”
The red ranger glance at the black and white photograph provided and his eyes widened. Right in the middle of the picture, smiling happily, both of them holding a 2nd place trophy were…
“Is that Sky and Syd?”
Bridge snatched back the newspaper from Jack as Z commented, “Weird isn’t it? I can definitely see Syd doing something fun and spontaneous like dancing, but Sky?” The yellow ranger shook her head, “this is kind of mind blowing.”
“We all saw him dance at Syd’s party,” Jack pointed out.
“I know,” Z responded, “and that was very mind blowing.”
“Guys, it says here that Sky and Syd won 2nd place in the dance competition,” Bridge told them as he read the article, “they won a shopping spree, Broadway tickets and a 5 day vacation, all expenses paid.”
“Wow, that’s pretty cool,” Z remarked, “Syd must be pretty happy, that girl loves to shop!”
“Tell me about it.”
The doors of the Recreation Room slid open and the three rangers turned to see their two teammates walking in, both looking tired but cheerful.
“Morning!” Syd went to grab a breakfast tray before settling down next to Z at the table. Sky followed, sitting in between Jack and Sydney.
“Well, it looks like you guys had fun last night,” Bridge grinned as he looked at his longtime teammates, “have you two seen the newspaper yet?”
The blue ranger shook his head. “Is there anything interesting?”
Jack snorted. “I’d say there is.”
Sky glared at Jack slightly before reaching for the newspaper that Bridge held out to him. Taking a sip of his water, he read the headline.
The green, red, and yellow rangers watched with amusement as Sky choked on his water, while Syd looked at the blue ranger with concern.
“Are you okay Sky?”
“We made the front page!”
That got Sydney’s attention. “What?” she shrieked. She snatched the paper from Sky’s hand. “Where?”
Sky pointed out the photograph and Syd’s eyes widened. “EWW! Look at my hair!”
“Forget your hair,” Sky retorted as he recovered from his temporary shock. He grabbed the newspaper back from the pink ranger. “We’ll have bigger things to deal with. My parents probably saw this already. I’m willing to bet everything I own that my dad is laughing his butt off right about now.”
As if reading his mind, Boom walked into the room with a cordless phone in his hand. “Sky? Your father’s on the phone.”
The blue ranger dropped his fork and it fell onto his plate with a clatter as he slapped a hand to his forehead and groaned. His other hand reached out for the phone. “Thanks Boom.”
Sky let out a sigh before bringing the phone to his ear. “Hello?”
“Sky! I had no idea!”
Sky let out another groan. “Dad, it’s not what you thin-“
“Didn’t I tell you those lessons would come in handy one day? I told you dancing attracted the ladies!”
“Where did you meet her, huh son?”
Bridge, Jack and Z were all shaking with silent laughter as Sky tried to get a word in. Even Syd was grinning with amusement.
“It’s too bad you two didn’t win first place. Your mother and I would’ve flown out to see you two dance!”
“She’s awfully pretty too. Why didn’t you tell us you were seeing someone?”
“Invite her over for dinner, your mother and I want to meet her!”
“DAD!” Sky bellowed into the phone, “Can you please listen to me for one sec?”
“Don’t take that tone with me Schuyler Tate Collins! Now you bring your lady friend over for dinner this coming Friday night. Your mother and I will be expecting you. In fact, your mother’s already planning on what to cook. I’ll even talk to your Commander into letting you have some time off okay? Love you son!”
The line went dead.
Sky stared at the phone in his hand with disbelief. Pressing the off button, he set the phone aside while turning to Syd. “Looks like we’re having dinner with my parents this Friday.” He gave her a hopeful look. “Unless you don’t want to come?”
The pink ranger laughed. “Are you kidding? I want to meet your parents! Especially your dad. He seems like such a funny guy!”
Sky sighed. “Suit yourself. Just be prepared for a lot of questioning and teasing. And don’t say I didn’t warn you!”
Syd just grinned.
Note: I apologize for any mistakes found in this chapter. I'm running on 5 hours of sleep and I'm exhausted as I've been studying and working all day. If anyone catches any mistakes, please tell me and I'll fix them right away. Thanks!