"The Enemy Unknown"

A story based on "Voltron, The Third Dimension"
Copyright 2002
By Adele Previte

"Voltron" and its characters are a trademark and copyright of World Event Productions

All other characters are copyrighted by me and can be used with my permission.

Thanks!


Chapter Three
A Warm Welcome on a Winter Day

The five robot lions departed from Arus without incident.  Before they left, Coran, once again, reminded the guys that it was their responsibility to see that Princess Allura returned safely home after their work on Earth was finished.

Aboard Red Lion, Lance was rubbing his shoulder, having received an injury during the process of loading the Princess's entire luggage onto Blue Lion.

But loading the luggage wasn't what had earned him the sore shoulder.  It was the comment he made within her earshot...



"Typical woman...always bringing along a lot of junk she can't possibly need!"

Allure turned and swatted him on the shoulder... a bit harder then she had intended on.  But in her mind, he deserved it.

"OUCH!" Lance cried. "What was that for?"

"Lance!  That was a crass thing to say!  You apologize this instant!" Allura demanded.

"Apologize for what?  The truth?  Not on your life, Princess!  This is WAY too much stuff, and you know it!  What... with all this crap, I'd swear you thought you were going to live there permanently!"

When Allura turned and hit him again, he cried out painfully.  But she paid him no mind...
only to say;

"Serves you right, Lance Andrews!  I hope you have a bruise now!"

Lance then turned to their Commander... who was snickering by this point!  The Red Lion pilot quickly deducted he'd get no help in that direction.



If nothing else, the power behind her punch proved to him that Coran was worried about protecting the wrong person.  Heaven help anyone who came up against her!

She definitely has a temper.

Keith's voice interrupted Lance's self-made pity party.  "Okay team, we should hit Earth space in about three hours.  Remember that this is the perfect time for Zarkon or Lotor to strike out at us.  So I want everyone to increase scan range out to a distance of two hundred
parsecs in all directions around the lion ships.  Anything is worth reporting.  If so much as a stray comet comes near, I want to know about it. Everyone understand?"

Affirmative responses came back to him.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

On Earth, Vice Admiral Royce was briefing the Alliance Council of Elders on the situation between Planet Meridiana Two and Planet Gundahar.  Both royal families had been convinced that coming to Earth to discuss peace was the best option.

There were also intelligence reports about the ruling king of Planet Gundahar.

His name...Drago.

Meridiana Two has accused King Drago time and time again of spiriting away people from Meridiana Two, and selling them as slaves to the Drule Empire.  He has denied the accusations.

Yet, King Drago's opinions were very much like those of another tyrant many in the Alliance were familiar with... King Zarkon.  He too, has no use for Meridiana Two.

King Ashland and Queen Josephilina of Meridiana Two insisted that the Voltron Force were to be present at the meetings, or they, themselves would not attend.  Voltron's heroism was galaxy renown, and if King Drago was to be present, King Ashland wanted Voltron there.

There was also the business of this missing spacecraft that disappeared somewhere in the Azure Quadrant.  Alliance intelligence had picked up on the incident.

Drago claimed a would-be hero from Meridiana Two stole it from him. Drago then further claimed that the spacecraft carried an invading force from Meridiana Two, who's only mission had to be to stir up trouble, and then, accuse Drago of creating the incident. And with Drago's royal crest marking the stolen craft, Meridiana Two could claim that Gundahar was striking out to terrorize the galaxy.

No one knows what happened to the craft.  It disappeared from sensors, with a last report that it was headed toward the vicinity of Planet Arus.

This was another reason for Vice Admiral Royce to want the Voltron Force present.  Garrison officials had prepared several questions for Princess Allura regarding what her planetary defense systems picked up.  Surely, they must have seen the craft approaching Arus.  They must have something to report to the Alliance regarding this matter.

But that would have to wait for them to be here.  With sub-space communications heavily monitored, it was more likely that someone would pick up the transmission between Earth and Arus, and would have heard the discussion, thus curtailing whatever sinister plans had
been made, and possibly, taking another direction to fulfill them.

It was far safer to find out what Arus knows when its Princess and the Earth Space Explorers serving her, arrive for a face to face meeting.

Which was why they were asked to report some six hours early.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

As the robot lions approached Earth space, Keith hailed Earth.

"Commander Keith Hunter calling Galaxy Garrison.  Come in Garrison, over."

"Galaxy Garrison... go ahead Commander."

"Garrison... we are en route to Planet Earth.  Request permission to land." Keith stated.

"Permission granted.  Welcome Voltron Force.  Earth out."

Lance huffed. "All this military mumbo-jumbo.  Why can't we just ask to land and then land?"

"Military protocol, Lance." Keith replied simply.  "You know the drill."

"Yeah, well I'd like to get my hands on the guy that thought up all of this procedural stuff!" Lance huffed again.

"Are we going to have to listen to his belly-aching the whole trip?" Hunk grunted. "I'm not in the mood."

"Listen, I'll complain if I want to complain!" Lance replied to Hunk in a snippy tone.

"Yeah, well, complain where I can't hear it!" Hunk said in a raised voice. "Its gets tiring, you know?"

"Okay, okay...that's enough out of you two." Keith said sternly.  "We have a job to do, so lets just do it and get back home."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thirty minutes later, the robot lions
had landed on the ground.  The Voltron
pilots exited their ships and were
beginning to gather near the Black Lion's
front paw.

"Hmmm, no welcoming party?"
Pidge replied.

Hunk kicked the snow around with his boot.  "Looks like Garrison got a decent amount of snow fall."

Lance immediately picked up a hand full of snow and began making a snowball out of it. "Well, at least it's good packing snow!"

"Guys, we're not here to play.  We've got work to do!" Keith reprimanded.

Keith suddenly grunted angrily, as he felt the impact of a snowball to the back of his lion helmet.  He immediately turned around to challenge the person who threw it.

Lance was still holding the one in his hand that he had made.  Keith glared at him, but he shook his head...

"Not me, Keith!" Lance proclaimed his innocence.  "I know better!  I like breathing!"

"Okay...then who's the wise guy who threw that snowball?" Keith shouted angrily.  "I want to know... right now!"

"It wuz me!"

The owner of the voice, who claimed to have done the honors, was suddenly greeted with smiles as he approached.

"Sven?" Keith called  "Sven!  What..what are you doing here?"

"I see you made it here safe and sound!" Sven replied.  "Romelle and I were called here by da Alliance to be part of a peace mission."

One by one, the Force shook hands with Sven.  Keith was last, who instead gave him a hearty hug.

"Great to see you!" Keith replied happily.

"And to you to, my friend!" Sven said to Keith.

"No coat, Sven?" Lance asked. 
"You'll catch your death out here!"

"No, I'm fine." Sven proclaimed. 

Allura walked forward. "Sven, where is Romelle?"

"She wasted no time in finding a local shopping mall.  She immediately set out to find another pair of shoes." Sven said.

"Oh, just what she needs, I'm sure." Lance said with a sarcastic tone meant to rouse Allura once again.

"I think that maybe I'll join her once I get settled." Allura smiled.

"Sure...why not?" Lance said under his breath.  "Add another dress to your already overloaded wardrobe!"

A serious expression suddenly appeared on Sven's face.  "I'm afraid dat will half to wait, Princess." Sven then turned to Keith.  "I've been sent here to escort all of you to da briefing chambers."

"They want to brief now?" Keith said as he removed his helmet from his head. "Can we at least get unpacked first?"

Sven shook his head. "I'm afraid not, old friend.  Dey want to see you immediately on arrival.  Dey said it's very urgent, and I don't know anyting more den dat."

Keith sighed and nodded his head to Sven. "Lead the way then."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Sven led them all to the Alliance Chambers where the Council of Elders had been waiting to see them.  Sven opened the door and saluted the attendees.

"Sirs, may I introduce to you da members of the Voltron Force." Sven said proudly.

Vice Admiral Royce and Vice Marshall Graham came forward to greet the group from Arus. Marshall Graham reached over and took Keith's hand, giving it a firm shake.

"Good to see you, my boy!" Graham said to Keith.

"It's an honor, Sir." Keith replied.

Royce turned to Sven. "That will be all Lieutenant Commander."

Sven saluted and turned to leave, shooting Keith a friendly wink for good luck.  Whatever the Alliance Council had in mind to discuss, it began to resemble an inquisition rather then a briefing.

Admiral Royce turned to the Council of Elders, and addressed them properly.

"Elders of the Council... it is my pleasure to present to you the delegates from Planet Arus. May I introduce to you first, Her Royal Highness, and pilot of the Blue Lion, Princess Allura DeVille.  Next to her, Commander Keith Hunter of the Voltron Force, pilot of the Black Lion, and field Commander of the Space Explores, Planet Arus Unit."

Keith saluted as Royce continued.

"Next, Lieutenant Commander Lance Andrews, second in command under Commander Hunter and pilot of Red Lion.  Next to him, Lieutenant Pidge Villatoro, pilot of Green Lion. And last, but certainly not least, Lieutenant Jonathan Simon, pilot of Yellow Lion.  These are the members of the Voltron Force.  Please make them welcome."

Hunk grimaced as he leaned into Lance's ear.  "I hate when they call me 'Jonathan' Simon! I like Hunk much better!"

"Yeah, it suits you...in more ways than one!" Lance chuckled back.

"Hey, watch it, skinny," Hunk grunted quietly back to Lance. "Or I'll lay you out like a rug!"

"Oh, I'm real scared now!" Lance chuckled back. "Relax, Hunk!  I was only kidding!"

The conversation drew a stern look from Keith, and they quickly discontinued the conversation.

Vice Admiral Royce cleared his throat, gaining the attention of the Force. "We want to thank you for your taking the time to report to us early.  We know this is somewhat unorthodox.  But we have a few questions we'd like to ask you.  Come with me, up here, to the front of the room, where you can sit and make yourselves comfortable."

Somehow, Keith couldn't shake the feeling that he and the others were about to be thrown to the dogs.  It was the atmosphere...it felt too cold...to stiff.  Much like the winter scene outside.

"This can't be good." He thought to himself as Royce led them all to the front of the room. "This feels like the beginnings of an interrogation or something..."

And the day had just begun.

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