Free to Soar – Jack’s Story
This fanfic was written for the December challenge over at SPDrangers on LiveJournal.
Fanfic challenge: The Aftermath. The rangers dealing with the aftermath of the defeat of Grumm, the return of Asinia, Jack's leaving, etc. You can focus in one character or more. There are no limits with this challenge, just be creative.
Note: Thanks to Melissa for the title!
Summary: Feeling lonely and missing his friends, Jack tells Ally all of his fondest memories of the team.
Though the sun was shining brightly that morning, the weather was a little chilly as the wind blew lightly around him. He sat on a rock watching as the tide rolled in and out. The beach was unusually deserted that day, but he found that he didn’t mind. He wanted to be alone with his thoughts anyway.
It had been a week since he had given up his red ranger position – a week since he had last seen the others. For a moment, he felt a pang in his chest – he had so many fond memories that he found that missed holding the power. But deep down, he knew he had made the right decision. He had never felt freer leaving SPD and he was still helping people – just in a different way.
But there were still things that he missed - things that he had gotten used too. He still woke up everyday fully expecting Bridge standing on his head or rambling about nothing in particular. He expected to see Syd primping in front of a mirror or painting in the common room. He expected to see Sky stalking along the corridors, barking orders to the young cadets or reading the SPD handbook. But most of all, he expects to see Z’s sunny smile and hear her wacky comments.
He missed the
training sessions with Sky and the Commander. He missed being in the
Suddenly, he felt a presence next to him and he turned to see Ally smiling and he smiled back. It was strange, he and Ally were starting to become close, but Jack knew that they would never be as close as he was with the others. In the distance, explosions sounded and he shifted his gaze from Ally to the smoke in the sky from the buildings. Ally followed his gaze. “You miss being a ranger, don’t you?”
“No,” he corrected. “I miss Z and the others.” Jack continued to stare at the sky, smiling with pride as he saw the SWAT megazord flying back to the Academy. “I miss the fun and the laughter.” Jack moved to look at Ally again. “I miss my family.”
“Tell me about them,” Ally said with a grin as she shifted, making herself comfortable.
Jack stared at her, surprised. “Really?”
“Yeah, why not? They’re obviously important to you, so tell me about them.”
“Okay, where to start,” Jack paused. “I guess I’ll start with Bridge. In the beginning, I often lost my patience with him. And believe me, there were times that I got so annoyed with him – but he grew on me. He taught me not to judge a book by its cover and that everyone has something intelligent to say – whether it was something big or small – everything was important.”
“So, it sounds like you consider Bridge a younger brother,” Ally said with a smile. “He was the green ranger, right?”
“Yeah, but he’s the blue ranger now. Bridge is one of the greatest and smartest people I know.”
Ally nodded. “Okay, so tell me about another member of your team.”
“Let’s see… I guess I’ll tell you about Syd next,” Jack grinned and shook his head. “Syd is definitely original. That girl can do some amazing stuff. Did you know she had been an actress, a singer and a model before she had started at SPD? I couldn’t believe it. Sometimes she intimidated me because she did all these great things and other times she annoyed me too - she was so spoiled. But then, it was because of her that I now have a birthday.”
Ally’s smile widened. “Sounds like you’ve become fond of her.”
“Yeah,” he chuckled. “Syd was beginning to teach me how to fence before I left. Did you know she won the fencing championship three years in a row?”
“I vaguely remember reading her name in the newspaper a couple of times,” the blonde replied.
“She’s great,” Jack grinned. “Okay, now about Sky. Man did he and I clash. He was a pain in the neck in the beginning. Eventually things between us began working out and we were able to work as a team. He’s learned that heroes can come in all colors and not just red – I can even call him my best guy friend now.”
“Do you resent him being the red ranger now?”
“Nah, Sky deserves it. It’s been his dream since he was a child - I can’t resent him for something like that. And besides, I don’t really miss being a ranger as much as I miss the people I worked with. Sky and I started becoming close when we worked together to bring in the monster that killed his father. I’m just glad that Sky was able to loosen up a bit – although I think Syd had a lot to do with it.”
Jack grinned as he recalled the events to him finding out that Syd and Sky were now a couple. He had been just as shocked as anyone else (with the exception of Bridge) to find out that the newly red ranger was now involved with their pink ranger – but he supposed it all made sense if one thought about it – Sky had been interested in the pink ranger from the beginning. In fact, Jack remembered flirting with Syd more times than not, just to get a rise out of Sky.
Alley smiled. “And what about Z?”
“Ah, the best for last,” Jack smiled widely. “She’s the main reason I miss the Academy so much. She’s been with me most of my life – she’s like my other half. She took care of me and I took care of her, it’s been that way since forever. It’s a little weird that we don’t see each other everyday now, but I know she’s in good hands at the Academy.”
“Well, maybe you guys can still each other,” Ally suggested. “The Academy isn’t that far away from our store. You can always drop by for a little visit.”
“Yeah, I think I’ll do that.”
The blonde grinned. “Let’s get back to the store now. Piggy said that we have some special visitors coming by today.”
“Okay,” he nodded, before standing up and following Ally.
They walked for fifteen minutes in silence. Jack was feeling better after his talk with Ally and turned to tell her so when a group of brightly dressed people caught his eyes. He blinked and felt an indescribable emotion rise within him and his face spilt into the widest smile.
Laughing, his arms opened and caught Z in a large embrace. He could see Syd running up to him with Sky and Bridge not to far behind her. Without warning, Syd launched herself toward him and grabbed both him and Z into a hug. A second later, Bridge and Sky joined them in the group hug.
“What are you guys doing here?” he asked as they separated.
“We missed you, silly!” Syd grinned, her blonde curls bouncing.
“Yeah,” Bridge added in his usual manner as he bounced along with the pink ranger. “And we brought clothes!”
“Z was dying to see you,” Sky smiled, his uniform looking crisp and perfect as always. “We all were.”
He saw the grin that Z sent his way. “You didn’t think you would get rid of us, did you?”
“Never,” Jack responded, grinning widely, his solemn mood now completely gone. As he moved to join his friends, Jack realized that his life was more than perfect. He was doing what he loved, he was free and best of all, he knew his family would always be there.