Science 101: A Study of Power

Disclaimer: I do not own the Power Rangers, they belong to their respective copyright owners and are used here without permission. No money is being made from this fic.
Authors Note: This is an alternate universe with an alternate time line.

Science 101: A Study of Power

“Behold the history of the universe!” Solomos said in a dramatic voice. He didn’t hide his disappointment when his students just stared at him. It was so difficult to capture their imaginations. “Now, behold the history of the universe according to mortals!” That got there attention. There was no denying the difference between the two. “According to mortals the universe is just a few hundred million years short of its fourteen billionth birthday.”

“That’s ridiculous!” Trelayne protested.

“Even they know that,” Solomos told him. “The problem, is that mortals came into being long after the Celestials formed the features of existence. The Realm of Mortals is around the age they claim it to be, they just don’t realise there is more to see… well most don’t.”

The swirling cosmic dust shifted around to form an image.

“Now this is one of those that could see the truth,” Solomos commented. “Krona the Maltusian, one of the greatest minds the Realm of Mortals ever produced. It’s such a shame that his genius was unappreciated and people only remember the bad things…”

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The Mortal Realm had been formed by a flash of light, followed by a long period of darkness. What happened during those thirteen billion years was unknown, but a relatively short time after the darkness was illuminated by the newly formed stars, life emerged. Real life as opposed to the higher beings that had been created earlier. Life with an finite span that made it all the more precious. Life so short that those gifted with intellect and creativity could change the worlds around them with a theory.

The Maltusians were one such race. Among the oldest civilisations in the universe, the Maltusians were considered strange by those that encountered them. For despite being a race of powerful wizards capable of directing extra-dimensional energy and bending it to their wills, they abhorred magic. Magic was too wild and unpredictable for them to control and what they could not control, they feared. In a doomed attempt to limit the influence of magic on the universe, the Maltusians gathered all the energy they could find and locked it within a containment unit, which the then threw into the depths of space. It would be eons later that they discovered that containing all magic was impossible since it was constantly flowing into the universe from beyond.

The Maltusians were also the first race to prove the dangers of meddling with time as they unknowingly rewrote their own history when the scientist known as Krona sought to bring order to the cosmos and eradicate the unpredictable force of magic by viewing the moment of creation in order to isolate the cause. Despite being ordered to cease his experiments, Krona created a machine capable of glimpsing the distant past. However in his haste he had failed to understand just how old the universe was and his probe was pulled so far back that he only caught a glimpse of the origin point before his machinery exploded.

The explosion had many consequences. The blast disrupted the path of the explosion that formed existence, fracturing reality so that instead of a single universe it became a multiverse. His anger at the failure of his experiment influenced the mind of The One during a time of emotional upheaval, leading to the split that created Light and Darke. And thirdly, the explosion caused enough upheaval to unleash Entropy from its prison and turn it loose upon the cosmos.

The events rippled forward through time, causing the Maltusians’ attempt to control magic to fail and in doing so erased the confidence that allowed Krona to build his machine in the first place.

The Maltusians could have become a major player in universal affairs. Perhaps they would have conducted an experiment that was unsafe and in doing so realised a new goal to bring order to the universe. Perhaps they would have become a divided race separated by their beliefs in how that goal could be achieved. Maybe given time they would have learnt to give others the means to exercise the powers they employed using willpower to bend energy to their wills.

But that never happened. The Maltusians’ failure to contain the spread of magic caused them to look inward to maintaining order over their own world. Experimentation stopped and a great race for the most part was content to stagnate. Had they realised that their race had been rewritten by the meddling of another race to make them less of threat, they would have fought. But they never knew and the great forces they were supposed to bring to the universe emerged without their guidance.

Not all the Maltusians felt that way though and from time to time a member of their race would decide to experiment with forces he did not understand. And Krona despite no longer being a scientist was still the sort that wanted to learn about existence. Krona believed that only through understanding could his people achieve their goals. To that end he carried out forbidden experiments using magic and discovered the means to summon those that lurked in Hell into the Mortal Realm. His first attempts were promising, but when he summoned a demon from one of the astral planes, he unknowingly created a powerful embodiment of twisted emotions: Nyghtmayr.

The Maltusians were unable to send Nightmayr back to where he had been summoned from. They did manage to force into the Morphyus Realm. Krona was severely punished for his crimes, but the damage he had caused would not be easily reversed; Krona had unwittingly spread the twisted emotions Nyghtmayr represented throughout existence and in doing so had offset the natural advantage of Good over Evil. Servants of Nyghtmayr remained to do his bidding, finding ways to feed on the emotions they influenced to free their master. The Shadow Empire had formed at the moment of their master’s release and remained free following his imprisonment.

Guilt ridden about the damage Krona had caused, the Maltusians discovered a way to fight the forces of the Shadow Empire. Unfortunately the method they devised required more than just willpower. It needed a powerful and creative imagination to direct the power. It was a weapon the Maltusians would never be able to use themselves and with their strong feelings of isolationism, one they were unwilling to share. Instead despite their regret, they resigned themselves to failure and returned to bringing order solely to themselves.

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“A single experiment led to the release of Entropy, the existence of Good and Evil, and the multiverse in all its form and glory,” Solomos explained. “Now imagine all those new realities suddenly appearing without a true origin. That is what makes this the Prime Reality and is the reason most mortals cannot comprehend the true age of the universe.”

“So time is a creation of the mortals then?” Noah asked.

“In a way. Time was the means to an end for some mortals. To dominate history, to have your race as the pinnacle and most important race in existence, allowing you the power to dictate how reality will look. A most potent weapon, especially when competing with races that might be superior. That race went on to master time travel and to set the basic laws of the universe. To achieve that they sabotaged the Maltusians at the peak of the creativeness, the eventual destruction of the planet Krypton and offset the natural evolution of a whole race, using civil war as a means of preventing them from becoming a threat.”

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Few races inside the Mortal Realm were capable of perceiving the Celestials as they carried out their work. The Maltusians had glimpsed them briefly before their fall from grace. But it was important to remember that those that had seen them were only able to view their past actions. Not even the most powerful race could perceive them in the present unless the Celestials wished to be seen. Just like the Maltusians, those capable of understanding the giant beings were those that struggled to assume the role of dominant life form.

The Cybertronians were one such race. Born as living metal from the surface of their world, they retained a racial memory of the ones that had first shaped it. The Celestial had been named Primus and his act of creating their planet along with its moons had carried down through the generations. Cybertronians had developed into living metal beings capable of changing their appearances to fit in or survive alien environments. Primus had revisited their world countless times, often reshaping the planet because it had not grown as he desired. Eventually though he had seemingly given up trying to guide his children and had vanished, allowing those that followed to tell the tales of their creator without realising just how long ago he had first assumed that role.

On the distant world of Gallifrey an ancient race had looked into the past and had seen the Celestials. The people of Gallifrey never lost sight of the magnificent beings. They studied the physics behind their miraculous creations and in doing so found ways to reproduce the effects before sending their knowledge into their planet’s past. The knowledge altered their evolution causing their race to evolve faster than it had originally. The knowledge they acquired allowed them to cause supernovas and to trap a black hole in a pocket dimension. They discovered ways to travel in time and used their discoveries to undermine those that would challenge their position.

The history of the Cybertronians was rewritten so that instead of living metal, they were mostly flesh and blood. They hid the true nature of the Celestial and then engineered a constant state of warfare to prevent the race from evolving. For a time they toyed with the idea of completely erasing the planet from history, but decided not to.

While Cybertron was a rival to Gallifrey due to the advancements of its people, Krypton was a threat due to its expansionist policy. Many Kryptonians left the planet to colonise other worlds, taking their beliefs with them and risking the reality that Gallifrey envisioned. Since Krypton entertained some belief in magic, they could not be allowed to go unchecked. History was rewritten in an attempt to eradicate the influence of magic; the development of the Kryptonian was slowed by billions of years so that at the time the people of Gallifrey were fully evolved, Kryptonian society was far behind them. The ancient Krytonians were forgotten as the planet reached an age of enlightenment. The strategy had worked but in doing so they unknowingly contributed to the destruction of Krypton when generations later the populations dependence of science depleted the planet’s resources and caused its core to collapse.

And then to prevent some unscrupulous opponent using their strategy against them, the people of Gallifrey engineered a means to keep themselves safe from temporal meddling and prohibited their own race from travelling to some parts of time. They hid the Celestials from even their own race, causing themselves to forget many of the principles behind their greatest achievements.

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“Gallifrey went on to become a dominant influence on this reality,” Solomos explained. “They held themselves as the race others should aspire to be. And for a long time they jealously protected their position, until they met their match. But that’s a story for another time.”

The swirling dust formed a map of the universe as the mortals would see it. With a flick of his wrist, Solomos had the map spinning around as he zoomed in on the world known as Tython.

“Mortals are not connected to the natural energy of the universe in the same was as those that came before them,” Solomos told explained. “The link was fragile at best and in most cases so weak they could only see, hear and feel the effects of it being used. Instead technology and science became the basis for their way of life. And as you saw with the people of Gallifrey, they were able to achieve some magnificent feats.”

“I thought this was a lesson in good and evil, not mortals versus gods,” Trelayne sneered.

“Those mortals surpassed the gods,” Solomos answered. “They found ways to destroy stars, to travel in time and transport themselves through the cosmos without any special powers. They managed all that without considering the morality of their actions. And of course the powers trapped in Heaven and Hell could not allow that to go on for long. They engineered the return of evil to the universe, and with it there were the forces of light. They inspired individuals to take up arms in favour of one side or another, but technology made everything so drawn out that they decided to help things along.”

“So the gods and demons introduced the mortals to the Power,” Noah guessed.

“Actually they just arranged a number of strange events to take place that in turn caused scientists to seek out the truth. That eventually led them to discover the power they had been overlooking for so long. It started slowly of course, a few warriors discovered that in battle they could enhance their strength and other abilities, or give their weapons a glowing edge that cut through their opponents; maybe even draw energy in from the environment and unleash it in a destructive wave.

“Then another group discovered that they could make an opponent stagger from a blow just by imagining the strike, or read an opponent’s thoughts and plant ideas in his head. Some could even take control of their opponent. Or make them tremble in fear as they controlled the world around them with their minds.

“And finally there were those that through meditation could latch onto an unknown energy, draw it through their bodies and use it in combat. They could transform the energy as they projected into other forms such as heat, light and sound. When some of were able to use all three methods of directing energy the scholars on Tython decided that they could be combined into a single study and applied their scientific minds to the very unscientific phenomenon.”

Images shifted into view of students trading techniques and exchanging ideas while scholars recorded everything they could. They saw how through trial and error the various methods were categorised and candidates identified. They watched as techniques for improving the body, mind and spirit were combined to create a training program that benefited the majority of students. Techniques were developed that allowed students to specialise and played to their strengths.

“At this time they only knew that there was some form of energy and that some could use parts of it that others could not. They didn’t understand the finer points. They did know that some methods worked for the body and that the correct technique could enhance strength or provide extra speed. By trial and error they found ways of developing the skills of the mind and those that allowed the release of energy. Of course there needed to be rules.”

They watched as two students sparred, dominating his opponent. They saw a look of anger cross the face of the defeated student and as the victor turned away, they watched his fallen for unleash an energy bolt at his back. Nothing could save the unfortunate student as the energy blast tore a hole through his body and he collapse to the floor. The cowardly assault led to new rules about fair combat and limitations on the sort of techniques that would be allowed. The watched as some went further, trying to outlaw certain techniques and making it illegal to even know how to perform them

“And so began the great divide,” Solomos announced. “The mortals couldn’t see the influences around them, but those outside forces divided students and teachers on moral grounds. From there it was inevitable that the sides would become polarised, factions would develop and the war between good and evil would start again.”

“I can’t see any proof of outside interference,” Trelayne protested.

“Really?” Solomos challenged directed the image to a small group of rebellious students crowded around a large tome. “That book was left for them to find by a servant of the darkness. The pages are enchanted so that once read the desire to know more and seek out even darker techniques is unavoidable.” He noticed the slight smirk on Noah’s face. “Of course it was the opposition that started to encourage those that would simply ban such knowledge without explanation. The forces of Heaven and Hell engineered a situation where the status quo could not survive, which eventually led to the rise and defeat of the Emperor.”

The rise and eventual fall of the Emperor played out as the dust shifted to provide the moving images. They watched the reformation of a unified approach to teach and its eventual failure.

“In the Emperor you can see some of the attributes of a fine villain,” Solomos stated. “He developed a long term plan and used it to gradually insert himself into a position where he was above suspicion. Then he used that position to turn opinion against those that stood against. him. Just a shame he didn’t realised the threat that Rio posed. The most important thing this lesson should have taught you is that the universe dislikes neutrality and is opposed to peace. The universe thrives on chaos and conflict, which is why the war between Good and Evil cannot end. And if you didn’t realise it the power they claimed to master would eventually be abandoned as they discovered a new source.”

“I thought there was only one power,” Trelayne challenged.

“There is, but while those that came before them simply tapped into the energy and put it to use, mortals couldn’t handle it. They had to break the power down into manageable forms. The energy used by these early mortals was not the easiest to use, nor was it the most powerful, it was just the first that they could identify.”

Eventually scholars would learn that although the different forms of energy could be used in combination, it was much more efficient to wield them separately. Specialisation and division would lead to more potent powers being discovered. Eventually some would revisit the ancient forms and master them. Others would learn to use them accidentally. The universe was evolving and the weapons of war were changing with it. Or so it seemed.

End of part.

**THIS IS THE END OF THE FILE**