Ziggy felt like something was wrong. Not seriously wrong, but just enough wrong that he noticed something was different. He went through the list of things he did today that might have made him feel this wrong kind of difference, but everything seemed the same. Breakfast was on the normal rotation of what he cooked for the other rangers; he trained with Dillon and worked out, went for a walk, then had a sandwich for lunch with the twins. He had thought about doing a painting, but that usually provoked a different kind of odd feeling in his chest. So that led him to this point where he was now, as they demorphed in front of the decimated attack bot.
He thought about asking if anyone felt any different, but he figured they would all think he was crazy or just being silly.
“That one did’na even grow,” Flynn observed. “I wonder if Venjix is gettin’ soft.”
“It feels more like some kind of trap to me,” Scott said. “Was anyone hurt?”
“Nope!” the twins chirped, as the other four rangers examined themselves.
“I was pretty sure it got a direct hit on me though,” Ziggy said.
“Me too,” Summer added. “That’s a little weird. Why would it have an attack beam that didn’t really hurt us?”
“Maybe we got lucky and it was defective?” Ziggy suggested. “But I think Dr. K will want to look at the pieces.”
“Good point,” Scott said. “Flynn, you have the most trunk space, right?”
“Aye, but I would be much obliged to have Dillon share the load,” Flynn replied. “I don’t think I could fit the whole load in my car.”
“Yeah sure,” Dillon replied, reaching in the Fury to pop the trunk. Between the seven of them, they loaded as much of the attack bot as they could between the two cars, and contacted Dr. K somewhere in the mix to let her know what they were doing. When they arrived at the Garage, they then unloaded it into Dr. K’s lab for her and the twins to examine.
“I will need to scan each of you individually,” she informed them, typing away at the computer, “as to ascertain if the bot’s attack ray left any internal changes in you.” Ziggy noticed as Dillon fidgeted in place slightly.
“I’ll go first,” Ziggy volunteered, trotting over the exam table and laying down.
“That was rather…adult of you, Ranger Green,” K remarked, preparing to scan him.
“Well, first in, first out, right?” Hopefully after scanning a few of them, she would conclude that she did not need to scan Dillon, or maybe he would not mind so much. But by the time all of them had been scanned Dillon was nowhere to be found. “He probably just needed some air?” Ziggy suggested. “After all, he usually goes out around this time of day anyway.”
“How would you know that?” Scott asked with a frown.
“Scott, I know what size underwear you wear,” Ziggy informed him, forcing a smile onto his face. “I’m fairly observant when it comes to people, thanks.”
“The scan will merely be waiting for Ranger Black when he returns,” Dr. K replied. “There is no sense in arguing about it.” Scott’s shoulders sagged down a bit as he released the tension he was holding there.
“Yeah, fine,” he said, more to himself than anyone else, before walking off to the weight room to blow off some steam. Summer sat herself on a barstool and hummed as Ziggy leaned forward on the counter.
“Did you see that?” she asked.
“Felt it more like,” Ziggy replied. “I never felt that kind of tension from Scott before. Dillon’s always made him a little flustered, but not like it was…”
“Sexual?” Summer finished for him. “I know. I’m surprised that I haven’t seen it before now, but they do fight an awful lot don’t they?”
“Summer, contrary to the belief of every slash fan girl who ever lived when two people fight, it does not mean that they are automatically in love,” Ziggy retorted. Summer giggled, and slapped his arm lightly.
“Hey! I was one of those slash fan girls!” Ziggy grinned at her and she smiled back.
“Don’t worry; I was one of those slash fan boys too.”
“Get out! What happened to impressing chicks?” Summer asked.
“I like impressing dudes sometimes too,” Ziggy told her. “I just rate more of a two than a three or four.” Summer’s brows furrowed at him.
“What are you talking about?”
“I believe Ranger Green is referring to the Kinsey Scale,” Dr. K said, as she bustled into the kitchen. “And I would like to know where my sweets have been lain, Ranger Green.”
“You can have them back after you eat dinner,” Ziggy told her. “And it’s a scale that rates how you like males and females comparatively, Summer. A zero means you are completely straight, six means you are gayer than the fourth of July, and three means you’re equally bisexual. Dr. K, no matter how many times you poke my side, you won’t get your sweets back until after dinner tonight.” Ziggy grasped her hands so that she might stop poking him, but she pulled away, giving a harrumph as she returned to the lab.
“So, you only like guys sometimes?” Summer asked.
“I think it would be more correct to say that I only like some guys?” Ziggy said. “I mean there isn’t like a time of day where I’m straighter or gayer.” He shrugged. “I guess there are just certain types that do it for me.”
“So what’s your type of guy?” Summer asked. “It wouldn’t happen to be tall, dark and broody, would it?”
“Summer, dear, we’re talking about me, not you,” Ziggy retorted. “I mean, Dillon is attractive by the standards of a guy, but he’s not a guy I would like pick from a line up or anything. He’s my best friend.”
“And you know, they say that’s what really helps a relationship,” Summer said. “It’s not how in love you are, but how good of friends you are.” Ziggy rolled his eyes.
“Aren’t you supposed to be into him, or something?” he asked.
“It doesn’t mean I’m not curious, what with everyone suddenly being interested.” Summer dropped her voice to a whisper, “Don’t tell any of the other guys, but I saw Gem checking Dillon and Flynn out as we came back.” Ziggy sucked in a gasp.
“Poor Gem!” he exclaimed in sotto. “He probably doesn’t even realize he likes guys.” Summer nodded along.
“That’s what I thought too,” Summer said. “I was thinking I should talk to him, or maybe one of you guys, but I wasn’t sure who to trust with this kind of delicate thing…” Summer trailed off, making her eyes wider, and blinking softly at him.
“All right, fine, I’ll talk to him in the next couple of days,” Ziggy promised, while rolling his eyes.
“But you didn’t answer my original question!” Summer exclaimed. “So what kind of guys do you find attractive?” Ziggy flushed a little.
“You swear not to tell?” he said. Summer nodded, resembling a puppy, or a high school gossip queen about to get a dish. “I kind of go for Asians, and darker skinned guys.” Summer squealed, making Ziggy reach across the counter to clamp his hand over her mouth, but because of the way they moved, he slapped her instead.
“OW!” she exclaimed.
“Sorry!” he replied, “You were just getting kind of loud. I didn’t mean to hit you.”
“It’s fine, you didn’t hit me too hard,” Summer replied. “I just think it’s a little funny that you’d go after guys like Scott and Gem.”
“That’s more purely on a looks level though,” Ziggy admitted. “Based on personality, I would probably say Flynn or Gem.”
“Scott’s not so bad all the time, and he really takes on a lot of stress in being the red ranger,” Summer said. “I think it’s really hurt his relationship with his dad too.” Ziggy nibbled on his lip.
“Yeah I know, and I say that based only on what I’ve seen. You never really how you balance out with someone until you really try though. Who know? Maybe in an alternate universe, Scott and I are soul mates or something.” Summer coughed at him, and Ziggy turned to see Scott just coming out of the training room.
“Do I want to know what you guys were talking about?” Scott asked. Ziggy, brighter than Scott’s reddest t-shirt, shook his head, avoiding the red ranger’s gaze. “Well, ah, okay. Is Dillon back yet?”
“Is the punching bag still intact?” Summer inquired. Ziggy looked up through his bangs to see her grinning.
“I’m going to go catch a shower, then,” Scott replied, jogging up the metal steps.
“That’s the third bag this year Scott!” Flynn called after him. “You might want to take it down a notch.” He and Summer snickered as a door up above them slammed. Flynn walked into the kitchen, brushing past Ziggy to grab and apple, but stopped to say, “Oh, and thanks for the complement lad. I like your personality too.” Flynn kissed his cheek and mussed his hair before taking a large bite out of the apple.
“I think I’m going to go and do something else too,” Ziggy said, turning to trudge along to his basement room.
“Awe, now, don’t be embarrassed lad,” Flynn said. All three of them turned when an engine roared into the Garage. Dillon came to a sudden stop on the red and black floor, and put the Fury into park, killing the ignition. He stepped out, before reaching into the back to pull out a guitar case. He turned and looked straight at Ziggy when he said,
“I got you a present.” Ziggy felt his face give easily into a smile, and trotted forward to receive his gift.
“You really shouldn’t have,” he said. “Guitars can be expensive.”
“Someone was selling it for kind of cheap,” Dillon said. “I’m not sure how good it is, but you said you missed playing.” Ziggy blinked. He had said that, about a week ago, if he remembered correctly, but he had just been babbling to fill the air, and had not really thought Dillon had been paying attention.
“Well, thank you, then,” Ziggy said. He moved towards the couches, balancing the case on the back of one and opened it up to reveal a slightly dull rosewood guitar. “It’s wonderful, thank you Dillon.”
“I just thought you would like it,” Dillon said.
“Well, don’t keep us in suspense, Ziggy, play something!” Flynn prompted.
“I think my nails are too long,” Ziggy replied. “Besides, I haven’t played in forever.”
“Your nails are too long, cupcake?” Dillon asked.
“It’s a totally legit concern for string players,” Ziggy retorted. “If you can’t press down on the strings hard enough, because your nails get in the way, then it makes the strings sound all tinny.”
“Play something anyway!” Summer demanded. Ziggy pulled the strap of the guitar over his head, and began adjusting it for his body.
“Any requests?” Ziggy asked, as he started tuning up the strings.
“Bob Marley!” Scott called as he passed between the bathroom and his bedroom on the upper walk way, wearing only a towel, Ziggy was very pleased to note.
“And the red ranger is first to request,” Ziggy said, trying to remember the chords to “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” He started up strumming whistling the beginning of the song, wondering if this was an incredibly strange dream that he would wake up from at any moment. As he strummed a long, half talking the words, and taking on a very poor Jamaican accent, he thought it very strange that everyone was in such a good mood, especially right after a fight with an attack bot. An attack bot that had attacked them in a way that might have hurt them, but how they were not sure about yet. Ziggy drew away from his thoughts when Scott began singing along once he had finished getting dressed and leaned down against the upper walk railing.