"Forever..."

A story based on, "Voltron, The Third Dimension"
Copyright 2004
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 26
Turning up the Heat

Audra returned to the warship, the Revenge, to find Prince Lotor enjoying an easy-going massage, surrounded by many of his female slaves.

As the young and beautiful Enchantress entered the room, the young slave girls suddenly appeared to react fearfully toward her...feeling her evil presence, even before she had entered the room.
















Lotor was lying on his stomach on a nearby cushioned table, his eyes closed, as he continued to take in the soothing feeling that the relaxing massage was affording to him.   This was something he had sorely missed in his life for some time...indeed, what now seemed like an eternity.

As a part cyborg creature, he was unable to feel and appreciate the comforts that he, once upon a time, had taken for granted.

When the slave girl that had been doing the honors, suddenly stopped for no reason, Lotor opened his eyes and twisted his head upward to the girl's direction.

"Why have you stopped?" Lotor bellowed angrily.  "I've given you no order to..."

Lotor suddenly took notice of the girl, staring to his left side.  He turned his head and saw Audra standing there.  He smiled in her direction.

"Ah!  Audra...how nice it is to see you!" the evil Prince said with a phony tone of welcome in his voice. He ordered the slave girl to resume her work as he spoke.  "So...what news do you bring to me from Planet Arus?"

"All is progressing as planned, Sire."
Audra reported.  "I have been invading
Princess Allura's dreams, both night
and day, giving her visions of
Commander Keith's demise."

"And?" Lotor asked.

"And...she is beginning to weaken,
as I expected of her." Audra said
with a low, even-toned voice.

"And her father's ghost?" Lotor asked.


"Confined, Sire." Audra replied with a matter-of-fact tone of voice.

"Excellent, Audra!" Lotor said with an evil smile.  "I believe it is time to turn up the heat on Planet Arus, by stepping up our attacks, don't you think?"

"As you desire, Prince." Audra said with a half-smile on her face.

"Very good!  I will order the attacks to double.  And our first target tonight will be none other than Allura's santuary...the Castle of Lions!" Lotor proclaimed.  "I'll take care of it immediately!  Return to Arus, Audra.  I want a report on how well Allura handles an attack on her own home."

Audra bowed and left to carry out Lotor's command.

Lotor smiled contently as he closed his eyes
once again, returning his attention to enjoying
the relaxing massage. Soon, he would also be
able to enjoy the feel of the stubborn
Princess of Arus, as he takes her in his arms.





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


The time was two-fifteen in the early morning...

Keith turned in his bed, fast asleep.  Even though he had slept for most of the afternoon, he found it quite easy to fall asleep once again during the darkness of night.

But his rest was short lived...

Once again, the Castle's klaxons sounded, startling him awake, like the sound of an annoying alarm clock.  He bounced from bed, already fully dressed, finding it easier to sleep dressed in his clothes, ready for action.  He quickly rose and put on his shoes, running for the door of the quarters.

Keith exited his room and began to sprint down the corridor.  He soon met up with Lance, who had just emerged from his assigned quarters, just a short distance down the hallway.  Lance quickly joined his commander friend and the two of them continued down the corridor toward the Castle Control Room.

They were the first two to arrive in the Control Room and they were quickly greeted by Coran, who had been keeping a watchful eye on the alert boards.  It was Coran who had sounded the alert systems throughout the Castle, summoning the Voltron Force for active duty.

"Commander!  Lance!" Coran addressed them both.

"What have we got now, Coran?"
Keith asked, now leaning over his
shoulder.

"Several attack ships, heading
toward several location around Arus,"
Coran replied back. "And...it would
appear...that the number of ships has
increased to triple their usual strength."
Coran added.

"Triple?" Keith gasped.  "Show me!"

As Coran and Keith poured
over the incoming data, Pidge,
Hunk and Princess immediately
entered the Control Room,
running up to join Lance, Keith
and Coran.


"More trouble?" Hunk groaned.  "Can't these guys learn to attack in
the daytime...when we're all awake?"

"Cool it, Hunk!" Pidge barked back.

Allura walked up next to Keith and Lance.  "What kind of trouble?" she asked them both.

"The 'plenty' kind."
Keith replied back to her.

"Yeah," Lance added. 
"And it looks like they've
picked up some friends
along the way!"

"You mean, there's more
of them this time?" Allura asked.

"That's exactly what we mean,
Princess." Lance replied.

"Okay...enough talking!"
Keith interrupted. "Let's get to the lions!  Coran, raised the tunnels!"

"At once!" Coran replied.

The team stepped away from the control consoles.  As the tunnels rose up from the ground, Keith shouted up to Coran.  "Pin-point landing positions and send me the coordinates!"

"Right away, Commander!" Coran shouted back, his eyes moving back and forth as he quickly began to receive data.


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


The five members of the Voltron
Force were loaded into their
individual shuttles and were
now racing through the lion
tubes, heading toward their lions.

As Keith was being lifted up
through the Lion Monument,
he suddenly felt a heavy jar
and heard a tremendous
explosion, just outside the
walls of the monument.


Before he could even think to open a COM link to the rest of his team, he was suddenly receiving a message from Castle Control.

Coran's voice shook as he franticly spoke through the COM...

"Keith!  Keith!  We're under attack!" Coran shouted in Keith's ear.

"What?" Keith called back, placing his hand on the left side of his helmet, trying to hear over the explosions going out outside.

"Repeat!  The Castle of Lions is under attack!" Coran said again.

Outside of the Lion Monument, a single, wide tube rose up from the platform, extending toward the bottom of the head of the Black Lion.

Chaos was reigning down around the Castle of Lions, as nearly one hundred G'Donar and Doom fighters zoomed through the air, taking targeted pop-shots at the Castle's shields.

The tiny command chair, containing Commander Keith Hunter rose up from the protective walls of the Lion Monument and was now zooming upward through the tube, toward the bottom Black Lion's head, where it would soon be loaded into the cockpit of the mighty Black Warrior.

Keith gasped, feeling both fear and anxiousness well up in his being, as he suddenly got a good look at what he and his team were up against.  He was not concerned with being detected by the enemy, because the Castle was covering the Black Lion Monument with it's extended shielding...but only until his lion came to life.  Then, the shielding would be dropped.

What did concern him was what his friends would encounter, once they arrived... and particularly, that the Princess would immediately face danger the moment her Blue Lion burst forth from the shielded lake.

Keith's face suddenly begot a look of determination, as he was finally loaded into the Black Lion cockpit from underneath the lion.  As he loaded his key into the special compartment, the lion suddenly roared to life and the cockpit's main monitors suddenly came to life.

But that was not all that happened...

In an instant after the Black Lion roared, swarms of G'Donar and Doom fighters immediately circled around, deteching the shields being dropped around the Black Lion.  Tney were  suddenly preparing to converge on the Lion Monument.

"YIKES!" Keith shouted, suddenly pulling on the controls and launching the lion into the air. He knew they'd be coming for him once the shields dropped, but he didn't realize how fast they'd swarm in!

Several rounds of ammunition impacted the now vacant pedestal, causing heavy damage, and nearly missing the Black Lion robot.

Keith opened a line to his team.  "Guys!  We've got company around the Castle!  And these guys mean business!  Stay alert and follow your assigned formation patterns!  Code name: Alpha-Charlie-Freedom!"

"Read you, Keith!" Pidge's voice boomed across the COM.  "Green's on the way!"

"Yellow too, Chief!" Hunk shouted back.

"Red Lion...on the move and dangerous!" Lance cried.

"Princess!  The moment you blast up from the water, you're going to be in the thick of it!" Keith warned.  "Have all shields up and prepare to fire immediately!"

"Understood, Keith!" Allura's voice echoed through the COM.

"And remember everyone...stick with the formation plan!  We can cover for each other!  Don't let these guys veer you off course!" Keith reminded.

"Roger, Keith!" Lance replied.

"Understood, Commander!" Pidge added.

"Just let me at 'em!" Hunk shouted.

Black Lion dodged and dipped, trying to avoid being surrounded by the now, swarming enemy fighters.

Blue Lion immediately broke the surface of the water, ready for action with weapons to bear. Allura suddenly took notice that Keith was in trouble and in her estimation, in danger of being shot down.


...the dream.


"I'm coming, Keith!" Allura shouted fiercely.

Seconds later, a round of fire blasters zipped past the Blue Lion's aft side, and Allura reacted as a trapped, wild animal.  She turned and opened fire immediately on the attack ships, taking out seven of them.

Black Lion's laser cannons poured it on, roasting nearly ten more ships.

But several more were on the attack and were now beginning to hit the Castle with everything they had.

Red Lion, Yellow Lion and Green Lion immediately arrived on the scene and began taking out some of the enemy ships.  All five lions suddenly assumed formation in a semi-circle...enabling them to move around, while keeping each other in view, in case one of them got in trouble.

As Allura targeted another G'Donar ship, preparing to blow it up, she suddenly saw two G'Donar fighters, coming around at Black Lion's rear.  They headed right for Black Lion...

"Hey!  Look out, Keith!" Pidge shouted the warning.  "Those guys are coming at you, fast!"

"I see 'em Pidge!" Keith said as he prepared to take out the two G'Donar ships.

Red Lion came around and tagged them from behind instead...  "Come to Papa!" Lance laughed out loud.

Red Lion then resumed its formation.

"Thanks, Lance!" Keith called out over the COM.

"I owe you a time or two!" Lance replied back with a chuckle.  "Just don't make it into a habit for me to bail your butt out all of the time!"

"Look out, Princess!" Hunk cried, interrupting Lance's reply on the COM.

Keith turned his head to the left and saw four more coming around from Allura's left and right sides.

"Move it, Allura!" Keith shouted the order.

As Keith watched Allura dive downward, narrowly missing the blasts from the other ships, he momentarily had lost track of what was going on around him.

It was a mistake...

A G'Donar renegade warrior had zoomed up from behind him.  The ship rammed itself into Keith, clipping the starboard side of Black Lion's rear compartment... knocking out his energy shields.  The ship then crashed to the ground and exploded.

"KEITH!" Allura screamed, as she witnessed the impact.

Suddenly...her mind once again flashed to the vision she had witnessed earlier, the day before..and she suddenly knew what was about to happen next...

She wasted no time.  Breaking off the attack and breaking out of formation, she quickly maneuvered Blue Lion downward...beginning to align it underneath the Black Lion ship.

"What are you doing, Allura?" Keith screamed.  "You're breaking formation!"

"I know what I'm doing, Keith!" Allura shouted back.

"Get back in formation!" Keith shouted, struggling with his controls.

"No!  I'm going to save you!" Allura cried back.  "Just trust me!"

"You're making yourself an open target, Princess!" Keith cried out. "Get back in formation...
now!"

But it was already too late.  Seconds later...

"LOOK OUT, ALLURA" Pidge
screamed again.

Two Doom ships came around and
cast out a surrounding energy net,
enveloping the Blue Lion, creating
a dampening field.

"NO!" Keith shouted.  "ALLURA!"

The other four lions came around,
firing at the ships that were
holding Blue Lion prisoner.

"Concentrate your fire on the lead ships!" Keith ordered.  "Take them out, and we have chance to free Blue Lion!"

Red Lion, however, didn't even have a chance to fire its weapons.  One of the Doom ships released an energy cage, surrounding and then, trapping the Red Lion with it.

Keith quickly turned his lion around and zoomed out for the Red Lion, while ordering the Yellow and Green Lions to stay with the Blue Lion.

"Keith!" Lance shouted.  "I'm...stuck!"

"Brace for impact, Lance!" Keith cried out, now preparing to ram his lion through the energy beam coming from the Doom ship.  "When I dive through, you'll have a split second to get yourself out of there!"

"Ready for it!" Lance shouted.

Black Lion zipped past the beam, disrupting its pattern for a few seconds.  It was all Lance had needed to free himself.  Red Lion zipped out of the cage and quickly joined up with the Black Lion.

"Come on!" Keith shouted.

Yellow Lion and Green Lion were still struggling to free the Blue Lion from its confinement.

Inside Blue Lion, Allura's hands dance on the controls frantically, as she tried to get the lion to bank either to the left or to the right.  But she quickly found that she was completely powerless to free herself.

Another two G'Donar ships swung around and fired on Green Lion.  The impact disrupted Pidge's shields and with another quick hit, the Green Lion was now tumbling back the ground.

Black Lion zoomed underneath it, catching Green Lion on its back, cushioning the fall, giving its pilot enough time to reboot the systems to bring them back online again.

Red Lion took up Green Lion's former place, and together with Yellow Lion, they both tried to pull Blue Lion free.

"Hurry it up, Pidge!" Keith shouted.

"Okay!  My systems are powered up again!" Pidge advised.

Green Lion lifted off of Black Lion's back and together, both of them flew back up to offer assistance to Red and Yellow Lions.

"Okay, listen up!" Keith commanded.  "Hunk and Lance...you two fly cover and buy us a little time!  Pidge, load two disrupter beacons into your lion torpedoes.  Fire one at each of those ships above us.  That should be enough to disrupt the energy signal and then, we free the
Blue Lion!"

"On it, Keith!" Pidge cried.

"Keith!" Allura screamed.  "Watch your back!"

"Just get ready to break out of there, Princess!" Keith shouted at her.

Allura frowned, recognizing that his tone was course toward her suddenly, and probably, most importantly...she was not 'Allura' by name, but now, 'Princess'.

She bit her lower lip, feeling a lecture coming on at some point.  But she couldn't worry about that now.  She had to get free and protect Keith...

Green Lion's mouth opened wide and shot out the torpedoes.  One blasted one ship, the other, blasted the other ship.  The beams suddenly became visually weakened.

Keith's sensors confirmed what their eyes already saw.

"Okay, the energy's down...pull, Pidge...pull hard!" Keith shouted.

The sharp metal teeth of the Green and Black Lions began to pull on the energy net surrounding the Blue Lion.

Blue Lion struggled back and forth with all its might.

Suddenly...the energy netting torn and disbursed.  The torpedoes had done their job, weakening the netting enough to free Allura.  The Blue Lion burst forth suddenly...free of the net.

"Okay, time to get rid of these guys!" Keith shouted.  "Blue Lion, Green Lion, flank left! Red Lion, Yellow Lion, flank right!  I'll keep the middle!"

The robot lions suddenly took on a single line, hovering in mid air.

"Let's plow the road!" Keith shouted.  "Fire lion torches!"

All five robot lions mouths opened wide and burst forth with flaming breath.

"Move forward!" Keith ordered again.

The lions began to move as a single line...lion torches blazing, roasting the enemy ships as they dared to come in front to challenge them.  It wasn't long before the remaining attacking fighters began to retreat in haste.

Coran's voice came over the COM.

"Your next rescue point is Delta-two section...the town of Aurora.  It has been under heavy attack and we have just received a distress call from them!" Coran said.

"Where else?" Keith called out.

"I am showing numerous attacking ships!" Coran replied. "Too numerous, in fact, for you to help all of them!"

Keith bowed his head and sighed.  "We'll do what we can, for whoever can do it for."

Immediately, Keith began sending the lions out on defense assignments.  But when he sent Blue Lion with Red Lion, Allura suddenly objected...

"No Keith!  Let me stay with you!"

"You have your orders, Princess!" Keith replied back firmly.  "Go with Lance..."

"But...Keith!  What if something happens..."
Allura began to say.

"Princess...go with Lance, and that's an ORDER!"
Keith shouted, emphasizing the last word, strongly.

Allura suddenly backed down.

"Hey, what's wrong with
coming with me?"
Lance blurted out angrily
at her.

"It's not you, Lance."
Allura replied quietly.

"Then what is it?" Lance asked her over the COM.

"Whatever it is, we're going to have a little talk about it, when we get back to the Castle!" Keith's voice boomed over the COM.  "Now, cut the chatter and move out!"

"Uh-oh!" Hunk snickered.  "Someone's in trouble...and for once, it ain't me!"

"Did I just hear you say that you
wanted to join my little, 'after
battle' party, Hunk?" Keith
asked in a sarcastic tone of voice.

"No, you didnt' hear that, Chief!"
Hunk chuckled.

"Then get moving and mind
your own lion!" Keith called out.
"Everyone...move out!"

The lions separated, moving out to their assigned locations...in silence.
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