Disclaimer: I do not own the Power Rangers. They belong to whoever holds that copyright. I also do not own Doctor Who, which belongs to the BBC. The Lanterns and associated characted and concepts belong to DC
Not So Secret Origins
Long ago, the multiverse was an open place and travel between the many universes had been simple. Then something had happened sometime after the Fifth Day of Creation and travel between realities was suddenly extremely difficult if not impossible. Races that had once spanned the multiverse found themselves cut off from their brethren and were forced to exist far from home.
One such race was called the Maltusians. The blue skinned humanoids were highly regarded for their wisdom and logic. The Maltusians descended from one of the races that had been a part of the First Alliance and in the time that had followed the ending of the Fifth Day, their race had spread out throughout the multiverse.
Now in one reality one of those colonies found themselves isolated on a world they had claimed as theirs. Unable to cope with the sudden and unexpected change in their circumstances, the Maltusians had isolated themselves from the rest of the universe so that they could come to terms with the upheaval. When they reappeared thousands of years later, they were horrified to discover that the universe had descended into near chaos in their absence.
While some of their number busied themselves with seeking ways back to their original reality and other matters, the rest turned their attention to correcting the problem they saw with the universe. The criminal activity they saw around them was unacceptable. They swore that they would bring order and control to the universe and in doing so crime and suffering would be eliminated. And as they considered themselves to be the wisest and most logical race in their universe, they decided that their way of doing things was the best choice for everyone.
In their quest to bring order, the Maltusians realised that the first thing they needed was a source of energy to power their crusade. When they had first emerged from their isolation, there had been an abundance of magical energy spread throughout their cosmos, but the Maltusians despised magic, which to them seemed chaotic and often defied the rules they believed the universe needed to survive. And since they considered themselves to be the wisest and most experienced race when it came to such things, they had found a way to collect the wild magic, contain it and had then sealed it away for all time. That meant they needed to find a new source.
During the events of the Fifth Day, the First Alliance had hunted down and sealed away creatures of vast power that had been left over from earlier times. While extremely powerful, the entities were only vaguely aware of the multiverse around them and were deemed too dangerous to be allowed to roam freely. Now faced with a need to find a solution to their energy crisis, the Maltusians turned to the creatures their ancestors had trapped in the hope that they could resolve their problems.
They used technology to drill holes into the dimensional spaces beyond their universe, drawing out wondrous and often destructive creatures that devastated their world and forced them to relocate several times. After countless failures that they either covered up by shifting the blame onto another race or outright denied, they managed to locate and trap a grand total of twenty-four of the entities they had unleashed.
They imprisoned the relatively peaceful creature and studied them closely. They tried to control and domesticate them but failed. The creatures and the energy the radiated could not be controlled so easily. However, it was discovered that the energy that burst from the creatures’ bodies could be contained and stored. And once it had been stored it could be transmitted in a way that made it useable.
To contain the energy the Maltusians first located a new world they called Oa. Oa was located at the centre of the universe, making it far easier for the Maltusians to transmit the energy outwards. There they constructed complex structures that resembled giant lanterns and within each lantern they build a single cage to hold a single entity. Outside of the cell, they built the technology needed to conduct, store and then transmit the energy throughout the universe. Each lantern was given a unique frequency and when activated they energy waves merged to form a grid of multicoloured light. The Morphin Grid as it would later be called.
The Maltusians were proud of their achievement, so much so they started to refer to themselves as Morphin Masters. They held themselves up as a shining example for the rest of the universe to aspire to. They interfered in the politics of neighbouring worlds and when rebuked claimed that those that denied them had been corrupted and should be replaced. The knowledge of what they had achieved had granted them a level of authority and importance they desired to maintain.
For the Maltusians, bringing order to the universe was their goal and the means by which they imposed and maintained that order did not matter. They had the lanterns and the power they radiated, now they needed an army to take that energy and use it to bring order. They chose to build machines that they could program to know the law and enforce it where needed. The machines they built were given everything needed to fight the war against chaos and bring order to the universe. The Legislators were dispatched without testing and the Morphin Masters congratulated themselves on a job well done.
The realisation that they had done something wrong followed much later when the Morphin Masters were informed that instead of purging the universe of chaos, they had instead identified life as being the source of chaos and started a campaign to destroy all life. When the Morphin Masters tried to intervene and change what they assumed to be a programming glitch, the machines deemed them to be a part of the problem. In the conflict that followed many of the Morphin Masters were slaughtered and the Legislators were believed to be wiped out. With the Morphin Masters the clear victors the events were altered to cover up the mistakes that had led to such a tragedy.
The Maltusians that survived the Legislator War were determined that such a mistake would never be made again. They decided the Legislators had failed because they were machines and the power of the Morphin Grid had corrupted them. So, in future they would use living beings as agents, granting them limited power in return for their service.
They took the located the remains of the Legislators and stripped the components that had allowed them to receive energy from Oa. They smelted the scrap materials and from the molten remains, they created rings capable of channelling power from the lanterns. For reasons they refused to disclose, they made each ring capable of only drawing from a single lantern and therefore only one entity at a time. Each ring incorporated a powerful computer that directed its functions and that include fail safes to prevent their new soldiers from abusing their powers.
A vast and highly complex set of instructions were placed into the rings’ computers allowing the rings to search out and find those worthy of serving the Morphin Masters and using the power within the rings. The rings were dispatched, and the Morphin Masters soon summoned those that had been chosen to train them in the use of their powers. They referred to their chosen soldiers as Lantern Rangers and in time the legend of the Lantern Rangers and the Morphin Masters grew as they tried to bring order to the universe at large.
In their haste the Morphin Masters had failed to consider what would happen if others managed to tap into the power of the Morphin Grid or if they could use the creatures the Morphin Masters had failed to capture as a source of power. The Lantern Rangers were initially successful until they ran afoul of one such villain. When faced with those that held similar if not greater power and knew how to use it, the Lantern Rangers were put on the defensive and the Morphin Masters found themselves unable to devise a new strategy.
With the Morphin Masters unwilling or unable to lead the Lantern Rangers, others were forced to take on the role of leadership. New commanders emerged and under their leadership the Lantern Rangers fought back. The new mentors quickly found themselves regarded as Morphin Masters while those that had previously claimed the title withdrew to Oa and considered their options.
Despite the knowledge that it was their past action that would lead to the loss of the order they worked so hard to achieve; the original Morphin Masters were unable to accept the blame for their failures. They blamed the new villains for changing the rules of engagement, they blamed the Lantern Rangers for lacking the ability to defeat the new villains, and they blamed those that had risen to lead them for challenging the Maltusians’ authority.
The Lantern Rangers were a disappointment to the Maltusians. They were far from the ordered army that they had anticipated. They were too independent to complete the task that had been set for them. They had believed that the Lantern Rangers would become an army of soldiers that looked and acted like an army. Instead the Lantern Rangers had become a collection of individuals hat lacked the conformity the Morphin Masters expected. Even two Lantern Rangers drawing energy from the same lantern looked the same.
For some hardliners among the Maltusians the Lantern Rangers were another failure that they felt should be removed and replaced. Unfortunately, where the Legislators had been a threat to the people of the universe, the populace saw the Lantern Rangers as a force of good. The Maltusians were forced to allow their perceived failure to continue.
After eons of watching the Lantern Rangers struggle to hold back the darkness, the Maltusians realised that their soldiers were not going to lose. The battle shifted back and forth as the Rangers and the opposing forces gained and then lost the upper hand. Unlike the Legislators they had devised, the Lantern Rangers were not going to be wiped out and forgotten.
Indeed, over time the new Morphin Masters had refined the technology that controlled the Lantern Ranger powers, allowing the use of localised lanterns to power Rangers in a smaller area. It allowed greater control to prevent abuse of power, but to the Maltusians’ horror, it meant that they were becoming further side-lined from events. Eventually they realised that the only thing they could do was withdraw and seek a new solution while allowing the Lantern Rangers and those they had chosen to guide them, to continue their fight. And so, they vanished, and the legacy of the Lantern Rangers endures to this day…
And so it begins
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