(Twenty minutes and a sing-a-long later…)
“Okay, so where does everyone want to go?” Jason asked, leaning lazily against the hood of the
jeep as Kim, Zack, Trini and Billy stretched out their sore muscles. Even for a short while it really wasn’t comfortable
sitting in the back.
“Well,” Trini opened diplomatically, “Why don’t we split up and all head off in different
directions. It’ll be easier to decide where to go in two’s than as a big group. We can meet up at the diner down
the road. Daisy’s Diner, I think, it’s the one with the picture of the daisy painted on the roof.” She pointed
to somewhere a little way down the main road of the small country town.
“Sounds good to me,” Kim chirruped as Billy and Zack nodded their agreement. Jason had a feeling
this was for his and Tommy’s benefit but didn’t comment. If they wanted to give him more time with his guy then
who was he to deny them?
“Okay then, guys, we’ll meet you at the diner at twelve. After lunch we can set off back on the
road – we should make it home around midnight,” Jason told them with a nod as they all began to scatter. Slowly
he turned his attention to Tommy, glad to see the boy hadn’t decided to wander off on his own, “So, where to?”
Tommy appeared to think for a moment before I small smile lit up his face, “Well, I think there’s
someone who wanted to meet you, so let’s pay her a visit.”
He tugged on Jason’s arm, steering him in the right direction. He stiffened slightly for a moment when
he felt Jason slip a hand into his, interlocking their fingers, but soon relaxed into it. After all, it wasn’t that
strange, just… good strange.
Jason couldn’t hold back a small laugh as he was all but forcibly dragged into the small leather store
at the end of the street. The smell hit him instantly and he attempted to hold back a choking cough. His eyes quickly landed
on the girl behind the till, she wasn’t much older than him he supposed. Twenty-ish. Didn’t really matter either
way. She was obviously the girl who’d figured out Tommy’s deep, dark secret before he’d even figured it
“Hey!” She called brightly to her favourite (only) customer of the past week, “Wasn’t
expecting to see you back so soon hair-boy.” She seemed to perk up instantly. Now with the ability to see her name tag
Jason noted that it proclaimed in bright red letters; “Hi call me Ren!” to anyone who could be bothered to look.
“Well, we’re leaving today and decided to have a last look around town. This place seemed like
a good idea place to drop in on…” Tommy told her with a shrug.
Ren just gave a small nod. There weren’t many other places to go here if she was honest, which she always
was, of course. She gave a small, mysteriously cheeky smile. “So, this must be your guy then?”
Tommy flushed a deep crimson at her blunt questioning. Was it really that obvious? He looked across to Jason
and realised they still had their hands locked together… so, okay, maybe it was that obvious.
“Erm, yeah, this is him. Ren, Jason. Jason, Ren.” Tommy pointed back and forth appropriately throughout
the introduction. He never got why people repeated the names back again to the other person, if you’d just said the-person-you-were-introducing-them-to’s
name, wasn’t it rather pointless. Ah well, you can’t fix stupidity.
“You know, he suits that jacket even better than you did, babe,” Ren told him with an appraising
look as Tommy flushed slightly at the endearment. He’d met this girl once, she was a clerk in a store he bought something
at, yet she could call him babe and feel okay about it? Maybe the overly nice thing didn’t just happen in Angel Grove.
Jason just stood and watched the interaction. This was something else. She was something else. He shook his
head slightly in dismay. “Pleased to meet you!”
“Oh, trust me, the pleasure is all mine!” She smiled sweetly and leant back on her elbows against
the counter, “So, you both got over your stupidity and got together then? Good. It was so obvious you had a more than
friendly feelings for jacket guy the other day. So, details?”
Both men just stared at her as she smiled a large smile, one with a slightly crazy edge to it. Their eyes
widened as the looked to each other and back to the girl at the counter.
“Kidding!” She laughed, “Just kidding.”
She appeared thoughtful for a moment before adding, “Just tell me this… he bought boxers for you,
right?” Jason nodded, assuming the question was directed at him but slightly intimidated by the girl. “Weeeeeeeelllll,”
She drew out the sound teasingly, “Has he ripped them off you yet?”
Both their jaws dropped, Tommy stuttering in response until Jason recollected himself and answered with a
smirk, “That’s for me to know and you to never find out about.”
“Excuse me!” Tommy cried out indignantly, “You want to make yourself out as easy then go
ahead, but don’t involve me in this image!” He folded his arms and pouted in mock outrage, turning his back to
Jason just laughed. He moved behind Tommy, wrapping his arms around his waist from behind, leaning in to kiss
him on the cheek, totally disregarding their audience, “Sorry, babe, neither of us is that easy, but you can’t
exactly make yourself up to be shy now can you?” He just chuckled as Tommy smacked him on the arm, turning to kiss him
“Aww,” The noise came with a slight bang as Ren slumped down on the desk, head tilting to the
side as she watched the proceedings from her front row seat, “You are just too cute for words. Hot, too.”
Jason and Tommy both blushed hotly and Tommy tugged on Jason’s sleeve, “Come on Jase, I think
we’ve indulged the psycho long enough now.” He began to pull his partner out of the shop.
As the bell tinkled behind them Ren called out “Hurry back now” to their retreating backs.
Once out of the shop, and safely fifty or so feet down the road Tommy stopped and blushed a deep crimson.
Shaking his head he just stared back at the shop door. “You know, she’s more LA than I am.”
Jason just laughed and pulled an arm around Tommy’s waist, drawing him in close. “Yeah, she sure
is something.” He placed a small kiss to Tommy’s lips before heading across the street to another one of the stores.
“Come on we still have some time to kill, let’s see what else this sleepy little town has to offer.”
“You mean apart from crazy sales assistants who have unhealthy fetishes with our love life and your
underwear?” Tommy asked with a smirk as he crossed the road to get as far away as possible from said sales assistant
and her probing questions.
(A short while later)
Tommy lent across the table stealing food from Jason’s plate as they all talked animatedly about what
their plans were for when they got home and how glad they were to have a week without any unexpected – well, expected
“Aww.” Kim smiled as she elbowed Trini to point at the way Jason and Tommy were acting so…
“What?” The two boys looked at her with matching tilted expressions.
“You guys are just the picture of domestic bliss, and have been for the past two days. It might just
be the honeymoon period but it’s still sweet,” Trini told them with a nod and a smile. “You make a cute
Both boys blushed slightly choosing not to comment. Although, after a few seconds they both threw a glare
at Zack whose mouth was open poised on the edge of a remark. Quickly he filled it with a few fries causing the rest of the
table to burst into laughter.
Sitting back and listening to the silence, just enjoying each other’s company, it wasn’t until
someone at the table across the room gave a small cheer that their attention was brought around.
“What’s going on over there?” Trying to see past some older gentlemen at the counter who
were drinking coffee and eating pie, Kim pushed herself up a bit in the booth.
“I think they’re watching the baseball game.” Zack said after listening closely to what
was being said between the men and on the TV turned away from them. “Hm, can’t remember who’s playing this
“Ah well, we can probably catch the score on the radio when we head back.” Jason said with a shrug.
“You know,” Tommy said thoughtfully, “How come in baseball when they hit it out of the park
so no one can get it…”
“You mean a home run,” Jason cut in with a small smile, making Tommy perform a dismissive gesture
with his hand.
“Yeah, whatever it is. How come they still make the batter run round all the base things? If they know
there’s no way anyone can get it, it’s just a waste of time having the player run.” Tommy finished with
an expectant look to the others, Jason and Zack in particular, as they were the baseball players of the group.
“Because it’s just the way the rules are,” Jason said with what could be classed as a long-suffering
Zack on the other hand seemed much more amused by the Green Ranger’s view on this rule. “You can’t
even play the game, yet you want to change the rules. Only you, man; only you.”
“Well it’s a stupid rule.” Tommy pointed out with an authoritative nod. “I mean there’s
no way to get the ball so why go through the process of making the guy do all that running when they could just give him the
“He’s got a point actually.” Trini stated as Billy nodded and appeared on the brink of launching
into a detailed analysis of why Tommy was right. Jason quickly cut that off; not about to spend an hour in a debate with the
Blue Ranger on the problems associated with the rules of sports, again.
“Tommy it’s just how the rules are”, he said with a wave of his hand, mimicking Tommy’s
own dismissive gesture from a moment ago. “They’ve been that way for decades and will go on being that way for
probably all time. Besides there are other factors that come into play.”
“Like what?” Tommy challenged, giving Jason a bit of a look as the Red Ranger faltered a tad.
“Well like there could be other players on the bases. So if the one up to bat hits it out and the bases
“Oh lord. This is gonna be worse then that time Billy debated us on the problems with basketball.”
Zack groaned. “Excuse me miss, could we have some pie please? I have a feeling where gonna be here for a while.”
“Zack hush.” Swatting his arm and smiling as the waitress brought each of them over a slice of
cherry pie, Kim shook her head. “Just because you and Jason don’t think to question things doesn’t mean
the rest of us wanna be mindless conformists.”
“Mindless conformists!” Looking at the Pink Ranger in shock, Zack gave a growl. “Look sister
just cuz you and green boy over there can’t grasp the tradition that games like baseball carry-”
“Tradition? Oh please. Bunch of over grown boys playing in the dirt.” Kim laughed.
Looking a bit lost as Kim and Zack continued to go at it, Tommy turned sorry eyes to the sighing Red Ranger.
“I’m sorry; I didn’t mean to start a war between them or anything. I was just wondering, that’s all.”
“Don’t be sorry, they do this at least once a week. It would have come about had you asked about
the home run thing or not. Last week it was rap music, the week before clothing styles, and the week before that, sandwiches.
It’s inevitable.” Jason soothed, placing a hand on Tommy’s arm and rubbing it absently.
“He’s right, there’s no avoiding it.” Trini agreed, watching as Kim began brandishing
her fork at Zack. “I swear everyone thinks Jason and Kim are brother and sister but seriously I’d put money on
Zack and her with how they go at it.”
“I don’t want to hear it. It’s the rules of a nationally played sport! Get that, n-a-t-i-o-n-a-l-l-y.
Can you say nationally Kim?” Ducking as a straw full of grape soda was shot at his head; Zack retaliated by picking
up a fork full of pie. “Oh it’s on girl.”
“Okay, okay, that’s enough now.” Grabbing Zack’s hand and forcing him to place the
fork full of pie back on the plate, Jason shook his head. “Do you want us to be kicked out of another café? Because,
seriously, I don’t.”
“I must concur with Jason, Zack. We really are running out of places to go besides the Youth Center.”
Billy agreed, recalling how the last diner they’d been to had been the unfortunate battleground for an ice-cream sundae
battle between the two Rangers.
Huffing and giving the smiling Kim a glare, Zack turned back around in his seat. “Fine, but when we
get back home, all bets are off.”
“Do you two even remember what you were fighting about?” Jason asked calmly, as it was habit for
them to forget after about five minutes into the battle.
“Um…that’s beside the point.” Kim said calmly and with as much dignity as one could
muster after such a juvenile argument. “Anyways, whatever it was, I think I won and therefore Zack should pick up the
“Oh right. Think again, pinky.”
Heaving a sigh and signalling for their waitress to come back over now that it was more or less safe, Jason
fished his wallet from his back pocket. “I’ll pick up the bill; honestly, I’m surprised you all have any
money left after all the presents and decorations you got for my birthday.”
Moving back to the table a small pad of paper in her hand, the waitress looked at the group in expectance.
“Ya’ll ready to go?” At Jason’s nod she quickly scribbled down a few numbers before handing the bill
to Jason. Tommy lent across to read it over Jason’s shoulder but he held it close to his chest.
“You’re so nosey.”
“Am not, just wanna see what the damage is. Besides it’s your birthday, you shouldn’t pay.”
Tommy argued, even though he was well aware Jason was probably the only one of them that actually had a cent of money left.
“He’s right you know, come on we can all pitch in.” Trini agreed already digging through
her jacket pocket for the few bucks she had left. In hindsight it would seem they should have perhaps prepared a bit better
for this trip. At the least possibly asked their parents for a bit of an advance on their allowances.
“You can help with the gas for the way back. Come on, you guys have bought everything so far, least
I can do is pick up the tab for lunch.” Jason insisted setting a few bills down with the check, intending to let the
waitress keep the change as she’d clearly earned it dealing with Zack and Kim. “Come on, we need to head out anyways
or we won’t get back till well past nightfall.”
“Yeah, and if we stay in one place much longer Kim and Zack will start arguing over the seating,”
Trini said, only half seriously, before adding, “Again.”
The two Rangers in question simply scowled at her as they slid out of the booth and began to walk away, no
longer listening to their multi-coloured counterparts. They didn’t argue all the time; just the majority. Sighing, the
other Rangers followed them out and headed towards the car. It was going to be a long ride home.
A short while later, as they reached the edge of town, Jason slowed the truck down slightly. The ever snap-happy
Trini leant out of her window and snapped a quick picture of the leaving sign. The typical ones with the overly happy “You
are now leaving…” followed by the town name and some special little anecdote or fact.
It seemed slightly surreal. Their holiday birthday adventure was ending without a problem in sight. No un-wanted
calls from home or announcements of attacks from Zordon had spoilt their time. They had actually had a vacation – one
thing they doubted they would have for a very long time. Needless to say it hadn’t been boring. Who needed monster attacks
when you had lake nudity, strip poker, pancake burns and crazy shop assistants?
Jason just shook his head. He was going to miss it but boy, would it be good to be home.
(Many hourslater, many miles away)
“My Empress, the Rangers are returning to the city of Angel Grove.”
Rita sighed, rubbing at her temples. She shrieked throwing her glass at the wall, “What does an Evil
Space Witch have to do to get a fortnights vacation around this place!”