"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.


Chapter Nine
A Nasty Encounter

Keith was deep in thought as he walked down the corridors of Alliance guest hotel, wondering... to himself if he was doing the right thing in leaving Allura by herself for the night.

"This is stupid," he thought.  "She was obviously anxious.  I should turn around and march back there.  I should offer to stay with her again..."

His shiny black boots clicked with a rhythmic tone against the floor, echoing down the hallway with each step that he took.  He hadn't noticed that anyone was following him.

Ahead of him, two figures suddenly rounded the corner... both had black masks and were dressed in dark clothes.  And both stood directly in his path...almost daring him to approach.

Keith paused in mid-set, realizing that their appearance meant he was in for some obvious trouble. It was at that moment, when he went to draw his blaster, that the two who had been following behind him suddenly grabbed him abruptly and without warning.

One of them held his shoulders while the second twisted his right arm upward and behind his back. Together, both attackers forcefully slammed Keith, face first, into the wall, knocking the wind out of his lungs as his body made impact.

Wincing with pain, Keith struggled first to regain his breath.  Once done, he struggled to regain his voice.  The two attackers he originally saw were approaching him while the other two from behind held him fast in place.

Painfully, Keith gasped for air and attempted to reason with his adversaries...

"Guys...guys!  Whatever this is about, I'm sure we can reason this out without violence..." Keith said as he felt the pain in his right shoulder increasing suddenly, as the attacker from behind twisted his arm further up his back.

Keith yelled in pain.  It was then that one of the attackers from behind him whispered into his ear...

"This is a warning...so learn it well!  You are not to interfere again with King Drago, with regards to the Princess from Arus.  She is none of your concern any longer!  And if you value your life, brave Commander, you will hence forth stay clear of her as well!"

Keith grunted angrily.  "You're kidding, right?" he said.  "You know that's not about to happen!"

One of the attackers that had approached him from the front abruptly grabbed his hair and yanked his head backward.  Keith struggled to get a look at the guy's face, but was unable to...the mask was well protecting his identity.

The attacker then leaned forward into Keith's ear.  "Perhaps your renown reputation as Commander of Voltron has clouded your judgement and inflated your ego!  So...perhaps a night of recovering from injuries may be something you will listen to!  A man's pain is hard
to bargain against..."

The attacker from behind quickly punched Keith in his side, in the ribcage, while the second attacker grabbed his blaster and tossed it aside and down the hall.

Keith was released, and with the wind knocked out of him a second time, from the punch, now received in the ribs, and he fell to the ground as dead weight.

He laid there, momentarily helpless, as another attacker approached him, and landed a swift kick, once again, to the ribs, causing Keith to cry out in pain.

As the four stood laughing and mocking him, Keith found the strength within himself to sweep the closest one with his legs, knocking him to the floor.  The Voltron Commander then quickly reacted by leaping to his feet and standing straight up...suddenly ignoring the pain he felt, and instead, finding the strength he needed to turn and fight his aggressors.

It was at that moment that a familiar voice from behind him called out to him...

"Keith!  Your blaster!  Grab it, quickly!  I'll cover you!"

Keith saw his blaster slide to his feet on his right side.  He remained motionless for a moment, eyeing his attackers' movements... and then swooped down and grabbed the blaster in his hand.

Princess Allura walked up to his side.  "Are you alright?" she asked him.

"I am now!" Keith said with a heavy sigh.  "Thanks for evening out odds a bit!"

Allura stood with her blaster pointed at the foursome. "Now, I think the Alliance police might want to know a bit more about these four troublemakers!" she said as she opened a channel on her wrist COM.

But as she started to place the call, one of the four quickly threw an object onto the ground that ignited on impact, sending smoke and gas fuming into the hallway.

Keith quickly covered his mouth and nose with his sleeve and instructed Allura to do the same. She reached down and grabbed the hem of her gown, bringing it quickly up to her face, covering her mouth and nose as well.

Both of them began choking from the fumes.  As the smoke cleared, Keith and Allura were finally able to focus ahead...only to find that their attackers had vanished.

Keith grabbed the Princess's arm and began running with her toward her room.  As they cleared the area, they both stopped running, attempting to cough the fumes from their lungs and catch their breath.

Keith looked at Allura... 
"How did you know I was
in trouble?"

"I know you can be very
stubborn sometimes.  While
we were hugging, I managed to
activate your wrist COM, so
that I could monitor your
movements," she replied
with a smile. "I heard the
trouble start.  It only took
me a minute to scan for you
with my COM, pin-pointing your

"You know what you did was totally reckless!" he shouted angrily. "You could have been hurt!"

"You're welcome!" Allura said with a smile. "By the way, I alerted Lance.  He should be here any..."

"Keith!  Princess!" Lance's voice echoed as he ran toward them, followed closely behind by Hunk and Pidge.  "Are you guys okay?"

Allura looked at Keith.  "Are you?"

Keith waved his hand in front of him.  "I'm fine, I'm fine!" he replied quickly.  "You guys are making a fuss over nothing!"

Lance smirked, making a 'humph' sound.  "Nothing hurts him, Princess.  Voltron Commanders are tough as nails!"

"Yeah, right!" Pidge chuckled, walking up next to Lance, with Hunk right next to him.  "Besides, Keith wouldn't never admit if he were hurt, anyway!"

Allura walked up to Keith and laid her hand gently on his shoulder.  "I didn't catch why they attacked you."

"They were 'respectfully' requesting that I keep my distance from you." Keith replied sarcastically the Princess.

"Respectfully requested?" Lance returned with a small mocking chuckle.  "Oh, sure they were!  I suppose if they were any more respectful, they'd have killed you!"

"I have a sneaking suspicion, that's where the conversation was leading." Keith replied, rubbing his side where he had been kicked.

"That could have been messy." Hunk chuckled.  "Imagine what that would have done for the conference!"

Allura was not amused.  "How you boys can make jokes at a time like this, is beyond me!" she scolded, as she focused her attention to Keith.  "You could have been killed!  And you think that's funny?"

"I never said it was funny, Allura.  Look...I need to report this to Amalgamus!" Keith replied, turning to Lance "Drago's name was mentioned.  He's in on it, and he's after the
Princess.  And he doesn't care who he's got to get through to get to her.  Amalgamus has to know...its possible that the other deligates might be in danger as well!"

"What is that bucket of bolts going to do?" Lance shouted.  "I think what we should do is get out of here...pack up and leave...pronto!"

"That's not an option, Lance." Keith replied.  "If Drago's after Allura, he'll follow her back to Arus...you know that!"

Pidge looked at Allura. 
"Why is it you attract all
the weirdoes?" he teased her.

She frowned at the comment. 
"Thank you very much, Pidge! 
It's not my choice, believe me!"

Keith suddenly silenced them all.
"Look, we have a problem here!
This is no time to crack jokes!
We've got to find Amalgamus, now!"

"Fine with me," Lance huffed.  "But I'm telling you that the old bag of bolts isn't going to be able to do anything!  Unless we have witnesses or positive id's, he's going to dismiss this!'

"He'll listen to us!" Hunk shouted.
"Besides...both Keith and Allura
saw what happened!"

Keith rubbed his chin thoughtfully.
"No, he's right, Hunk. We've
got no positive proof to be
pointing fingers. Amalgamus will
increase security, but that's about
all he can do. We need proof to
show them what's going on."

"How do we do that?" Allura asked.

Keith looked at her...and sighed. "I'm not sure...just yet."

"In the meantime, we can't leave Allura alone tonight... or you either, Keith, for that matter!" Lance said to Keith.  "Its obvious that this guy Drago wants you out of the way. You're a threat to him."

"I agree." Allura agreed.  "I don't feel right being apart from all of you."

"What are we suppose to do, bunk together in one room?" Pidge chuckled.

"We'll have to, Pidge." Keith replied.  "And since Allura's room is the largest of the five, I think we all ought to head there.  We can then sleep in shifts."

"Sounds good!" Hunk said with a yawn.  "Only... can someone else take the first watch? I need a few winks!"

"Hunk!" Pidge scolded. "We've got to stick together!  You're being selfish!"

"Calm down, you guys!" Keith said, demanded order.  "I'll take the first watch.  Pidge you take the second one.  Lance will take the third watch. Hunk, you take the forth watch. That should give you enough time to catch a few Z's."

Hunk smiled. "Thanks Boss!"

Allura stepped forward.  "And just when am I taking my turn?"

"I thought if each of the four of us take two hours a piece, that would bring us to daybreak" Keith replied.  "You can sleep, Princess."

"I appreciate your concern for my welfare, Commander, but may I remind you that I'm a part of this team, too!  And I intend to take my turn!" she said angrily.

"She can have my turn, Keith!" Hunk volunteered, drawing a stern look from everyone.

Keith turned his attention back to Allura.  "Look, I appreciate your willingness, but you have to be fresh for tomorrow's meetings."

"And so do all of you!" she argued.

"We were trained to survive with little or no sleep for long periods of time." Lance added. "We can handle this."

"Did I not just hear you say maybe half an hour ago, that I was part of this team, Keith?" she asked.

"I did say that, yes..." he replied. "But..."

"Then as a part of this team, I insist on taking my fair turn!" Allura replied.

"I'm telling you, Princess, you can have my turn!" Hunk offered once again.

"SHUT UP, HUNK!" Lance, Pidge and Keith shouted together.

Hunk crossed his arms in front of himself.  "Geez...you don't have to shout at me!"

Keith turned back to the Princess.  "Allura, its midnight now.  Everyone takes two-hour shifts, and there's only eight hours that need to be covered. I think we can spare you the trouble for tonight."

"But Keith..." Allura argued.

"You can take the first watch tomorrow night, okay?' he finally said convincingly.

She paused for a moment, then reluctantly agreed with a nod of the head.

Keith nodded back.  "Okay, I've got first watch.  I'll wake Pidge in two hours.  Now...let's all get some sleep."

Pidge took a nearby couch and shared it with Lance.  Hunk found a decent spot on the carpeted floor and curled in the corner.

Allura was the only one who hadn't headed for rest.  Instead, she lingered with Keith...much to his dissatisfaction.  But he was in no mood to argue with her any further.  His task was guard duty, and he had to put all of his energy into that.

The two of them sat up against the wall of the room, Keith watching the darkness...while Allura laid her head on his shoulder.

It wasn't long before Keith heard Allura's breathing become even.  He glanced her way and found that she had fallen asleep...finally.  She was still in her evening gown too.

He smiled at he thought of the kindness of her heart.  She wanted to stay awake, but sleep had found her at last, and he was thankful that it had.

Keith carefully rose up to his feet and then bent low to pick the Princess up into his arms. The feel of her against him was so incredible that he suddenly felt himself trembling inside. She instinctively wrapped her arms around his neck as he walked her gently into the bedroom and laid her down onto the bed.

Rather then fussing with the covers, he opted to pull them over her from the other side of the bed, tucking her in that way.

She barely moved, wrinkling her nose only once the whole time.  Keith sat down on the bed for a moment, drinking in her beauty with his eyes.

The bruises he had suffered would heal soon enough.  To ensure her safety, Keith knew in his heart that he had to be willingly to go the distance for her...even to die for her...if it came right down to it...and if it meant her ultimate protection.

He turned a weary eye to heaven, praying it would never come to that.  Keith knew that his death would be as devastating to her, as hers would be to him.

After what seemed to be a long time, Keith rose again to his feet and crept out of the room. He turned and afforded himself one last look before he left...

"Sleep soundly, Allura.  I'll watch over you." Keith thought.