"Forever...United."

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! 

Enjoy!


Chapter 6
"No Weapons, Coran!"

The door to the Control Room slid open as Allura came running in.

Coran and a few of the Castle's guardsmen were standing around the control console.

Coran turned his head, acknowledging the Princess's presence. "Your Highness, Prince Lotor is demanding to speak to you! He threatens to unleash a fierce attack wave against us, if you do not comply!"

"Of course...the beast!" Allura huffed, clutching her fists, angrily. "The question is...comply to what? As if I didn't know..."

"What are your intentions, Princess?" Coran asked her.

"My intentions are to fight with all that's within me!" Allura replied back, firmly.  "You know I will not surrender to that fiend!"

"I know, Allura...and I agree with you." Coran replied back.  "I shall stand with you in your decision."

Allura nodded. "Open the COM link, Coran.  Let's see what Lotor has to say!"

Coran turned around and opened the link, as he was ordered to do.  The ultra-wave came alive suddenly...first a zigzagged picture, filled with distorted colors...then... the picture suddenly became normal...

And Lotor stood proudly on the screen.

He had surrounded himself with several, scantly dressed and very attractive slave girls, all fussing over him...and throwing themselves onto him.  One even playfully twirled his long, silver hair around her fingers, pulling at it gently, while another mindlessly fingered his muscluar biceps.

The evil Prince's smile was wicked in intention, as he bowed mockingly before the Princess of Arus.

Allura was not impressed by the scene, obviously put on for her to see.

"Ah...my dear Princess Allura!" Lotor began, full of artificial charm. "So good of you to take my call!"

"Why have you contacted me, Lotor?" Allura snarled angrily.  "You know I have nothing to say to you!"

"I've been hearing of some...problems...that you've been having on Arus!  Is that so, Princess?" Lotor asked her with a smile pasted on his newly restored face.

"Oh really?" Allura snorted back with a disgusted annoyance.

"Yes...and since we are such close friends...I've called to offer my assistance, Princess." Lotor replied in a suave tone of voice.

"Listen to me, Lotor!  You think me a fool, if you think that I don't know of all the spies you have on Aru...feeding you information!" Allura shouted back.  "I know what you're going to say...so let me
save your breath...and make no mistake...I will NEVER surrender Arus or myself to you!"

"Princess...never is such a strong word,"
Lotor said, now raising a goblet of wine
up to his lips to take a draw of it into his
mouth.

"It's a word you had better get used to."
Allura proclaimed.

"Is that the way you treat people who are
trying to offer you a solution to all of your
problems?" Lotor asked back.

"Your solutions come with a price of freedom!  That type of solution, I am NOT interested in entertaining, Lotor!" Allura replied, angrily.

"Now, you're beginning to sound like your hothead, Red Lion pilot." Lotor replied, when he suddenly dawned a surprised expression his face. "Oh...that's right!  Lance is no longer on Arus, is he?  In fact,
Keith has left, to return to Earth, I'm told.  And Hunk and Pidge...it seems that they've been having their share of...disagreements?"

Allura stood positively still, burning
with anger from deep within.

"In fact...I believe that you're the only
Voltron pilot let, am I
right, Allura?" Lotor asked her.

Allura crossed her arms in front of her,
standing smugly in defiance
of the Prince of Doom.

"Allura...let's be realistic, shall we?"
Lotor began. "I have insight that
you haven't even begun to understand.  And the power that is now at my bidding, is more powerful than anything in this universe...even more powerful than the mighty Voltron!  Now, let's be sensible, Allura.  Arus is a suffering world...and with no one to come to your aid, and with all of your so-called, Lion Knights gone, just what do you intend to do to stop me from taking over Arus?"

"I won't stand here and allow you take Arus, freely!" Allura shouted back.  "Die if I must, I will oppose you, Lotor…with my very last breath!"

"Allura...now why would the next Queen of Doom wish to place herself in that kind of danger....all over a planet you can't possibly hope to defend?  Without Voltron, you're powerless to stop me!" Lotor said with a smile.

'I don't need all of Voltron to defend against you, Lotor!" Allura replied back.  "I will oppose you...with any means at my disposal!"

"Allura...face reality!  You've lost!  You will be my bride...and together, we shall rebuild Arus to the blooming world it once was...but, if you resist me, I shall destroy those that you hold so dearly... your
people!" Lotor suddenly shouted at her, his expression now sour.  "I will kill them, Allura...one by miserable one, until you cry enough!"

Allura walked two steps closer to the view screen. "Nothing you can do to either me or my people, will ever break the strength that is...Arus!  You may have us in a vulnerable position, but with every evil...there is a greater good, just waiting to be revealed!"

"Now you're starting to sound like your father, Princess." Lotor snorted.  "And speaking of him... haven't you been missing him lately in your life?"

Allura's mouth suddenly opened wide.  "You?  You're responsible for his absent spirit?"

Lotor smiled.  "Let's just say...I know exactly where his spirit is.  I have a...friend...taking good care of it."

"Hagar!" Allura shouted.  "You tell your old witch to release my father's spirit, this instant!"

"Ah...but it is not Hagar that has him trapped!" Lotor laughed.  "Its part of that power source I was telling you about!"

"Let my father go, Lotor!" Allura shouted angrily at him.  "Release him, at once!"

"Surrender, Allura!" Lotor shouted back.  "Or I'll destroy your precious Castle of Lions and enslave your father's ghost...for eternity!"

"NO!" Allura screamed.

"THEN YOU FORCE ME TO DEAL
WITH YOU!" Lotor hollered irately,
suddenly and violently pushing all of
the slaves girls away from him.  He
pointed his finger at her. "Prepare to
lose more of the things that you love!
And when the Castle has been leveled
to the ground...I'm coming to get you, Allura!"

"You don't scare me, Lotor!" Allura shouted back.  "I'll oppose you with the very last breath of air my lungs can afford to me!"

The ultra-wave suddenly blacked out.  Silence filled the room suddenly.  Allura paused for a moment, girding herself for battle.  She then turned to Coran...who was now shaking his head.

"Princess..." Coran called her name, daring to break the silence.  "No Princess...I beg of you..."

"Prepare to launch the royal airforce.  I'll need back up support." The Princess said quietly.

Coran's voice gasped.  "Allura...you can not really be seriously considering..."

"Yes, Coran." Allura said softly, but firmly.  "I must defend the Castle.  It's my royal duty."

"But...Princess!  Our forces are no match for Lotor and the G'Donar!  Not without Voltron!  And one robot lion can not defend against the evil that is surely to come!" Coran shouted at her.

"The Black Lion is the most powerful of all of the robot lions." Allura said to him.  "It'll have to be enough."

"Princess...you realize that Lotor knows that your intention is to use one of the robot lions to defend the Castle!" Coran advised.  "It shall be no surprise to him."

"I realize that, Coran. But you must realize that I will not remain on the ground, while my people struggle to find shelter from the hell raids of the G'Donar and Doom that are sure to come! I must do what I can for them! Even if it means... my death..."

"Princess...no..." Coran replied in a whisper.

"I'm afraid so." Allura said back.  "I have no choice.  I must defend my people...with or without Voltron."

"Princess...what if you are captured?" Coran asked.

"I...won't be captured, Coran." Allura said softly.

Coran's voice suddenly fell silent.  She would rather die...and he knew it.

"Raise the lion tunnels, Coran." Allura ordered him, as she stepped off of the platform, directly above the hidden tunnels.

"Princess...please...I beg of you to reconsider your actions!" Coran said to her.

Allura shook her head no.  "Raise the tunnels, Coran."

Bowing his head, shaking it slightly, he prepared to do as she had commanded of him.

"Coran," Allura said to him.

Coran looked up at her. "Yes, Princess?"

"Give me the Black Lion key." She finished.

In her hand, now extending toward Coran, was the key to the Blue Lion.

"Princess..."

"Take the Blue Lion key.  Keep it here with you.  And give me the Black Lion key." she said again.

Coran sighed, sadly.  He reached his hand into his pocket and slowly removed it again, revealing his hand, now holding the Black Lion key.  Allura had given it to him when Keith had abandoned his uniform in his room.

Now, she intended to use it.

Coran handed the key to her and she accepted it.  In turn, she handed over the Blue Lion key, charging it to Coran's safekeeping.

"I'll retrieve my uniform from the Blue Lion shuttle." she said to him.

"Princess...I beg you...think of what you are about to do." Coran tried to say.

"Defend the Castle, Coran.  Do whatever it is that you must to defend the Castle." Allura ordered of him. "And launch the airforce as my backup."

"Yes...my Princess." Coran said in a shaky voice.  "Many young men will lose their lives today in a poor attempt to defend our remaining freedom."

"So be it." Allura said quietly.  "And we shall do so, with pride for our world."

He quickly reached over and activated the tunnels.  They rose up from the ground beneath their feet. As they came to a stop, revealing the chute entrances, Allura quietly uttered...

"You're a wonderful man, Coran.  I love you...with all of my heart." Allura's voice echoed.  "I can never thank you enough for all that you have done for me through the years."

Coran's eyes began to tear. He knew what she was doing.

She was saying, goodbye.

"God's speed, my dearest, little Princess." Coran's voice replied, choked up.

Allura took her arm and with her sleeve, wiped the tears from her eyes.  She then immediately entered into the Number One chute...the entrance that leads to the Black Lion.

After she had gone, Coran sounded the alarm... "Attention...attention all air units!  Report to your stations at once!  This is a code red emergency response! Repeat...code red!"

The Castle's klaxons began to go off immediately, sounding the alarm.

Attack was imminent.

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

Having retrieved her lion uniform from the shuttle for the Blue Lion, she quickly dressed and was now loaded into the shuttle for Black Lion.

Instantly, the shuttle raced through the tube, traveling through underground rock and soil...until it finally came to a stop.  She looked up and almost immediately, the shuttle was loaded into the ascending tube, lifting upward through the narrow shaft within the Black Lion Monument.

Allura watched as her tube passed from the bottom of the platform and then, through the tube that had now extended upward to the top of Black Lion's neck.  A panel slide open, giving entrance to the chair lift, which now had been loaded into the lion's head.  Once in place, the lift retracted and the floor sealed up once again.  The tube retracted back to the floor of the platform.

Allura quickly grabbed the key from her uniform key holder and inserted it, hastily.  The five-star panel suddenly lit up and began blinking in a circular motion, with monitors lighting up everywhere in the cockpit.  The console came alive as well, beeping and blinking.

She momentarily paused... gently running her hands along the cosole...remembering the dear man who's hands had once touched this panel...

The man whose jet black hair and mysterious
dark eyes remained nothing more than a
burning memory in her soul.

Keith...

But...he was gone...no longer able to help her.
She had to do this... alone...without him.
Without any of them.

She had to make her stand...on her own.

Shaking herself back to reality, she began her swift pre-flight check, but was soon interrupted by the sound of Coran's voice in her helmet COM...


"Princess Allura!  Come in, please!"


"I'm here, Coran!" Allura replied back, suddenly halting her pre-flight checks.  "What is it?"

"I am picking up a large squadron of Doom and G'Donar attack ships...on a full speed course, heading toward your position!  They will be upon you in moments!  You must lift off, Allura...or you will never lift off at all!"

"Understood, Coran!" Allura shouted back.

She quickly grabbed the controls, abandoning the rest of her pre-flight procedures, and instead, immediately lifting off into the air.

To her left, the Arusian air force was now approaching, preparing to stand with their Princess, as she prepared to draw a 'proverbial' line in the sand.

"Captain Zeeton, do you read?" Allura said suddenly.

"I read you, Your Highness!" the air fleet's captain replied.

"Captain...I'm not a miitary commander and I'm not so naive to not know my limitations.  This is your field of expertise.  So, I'll need as much back up as you and your people can supply me!" Allura
shouted, swinging Black Lion around.  "Prepare your people for battle."

"Ready here, Princess!" the air fleet captain acknowledged.

Suddenly...Black Lion began receiving a message...

It was from Lotor.


"Allura...give up this folly...for your own good!" Lotor's voice said with all authority.


"I will not surrender!" Allura shouted back, defiantly. "Kill me if you must...but Arus is a free world...and I'm prepared to die, fighting to keep her that way!"

"You're a fool, Princess Allura!" Lotor shouted.  "Think of it!  What better service can you do for your people, then to cooperate with me now?  Form an alliance with me, Allura, and together, we shall rebuild Arus to her former glory...and beyond!"

"More of your empty promises, Lotor?" Allura seethed back at him. "Well, I can promise you this... I will not bargain for the lives of my people!  You'll enslave my people and use them for your evil whims!  I would be doing my people a great injustice, if I were to surrender to the likes of you!"

"Stubborn little fool!" Lotor shouted at her in her COM link.  "We'll just see who has the sharpest teeth and the biggest bite, fair lady lion!"

Allura disconnected the COM. She suddenly caught a visual of the incoming ships... more than one hundred of them...now on an intercept course with the Castle of Lions.  She had a line sight visual of them on her monitor...and they were heading in fast.

"Get ready, everyone!" Allura warned.

The Royal Arusian air fleet, consisting of more than two hundred small. maneuverable attack ships, prepared for battle, with the Black Lion squarely in the middle of them all.

And...they waited...

Allura activated her on-board weapons system.  The lion cannon materialized on Black Lion's shoulder.

Now...only seconds away from the enemy ships, Allura sounded the charge...

"NOW!" she screamed.

The air fleet suddenly flanked left, right, up and down, swarming around the attacking combination of G'Donar and Doom fighters ships... like angry, buzzing bees.

Allura prepared to fire the laser cannon of the Black Lion...but when she pressed down on the buttons of her steering control levers, to fire on the incoming enemy ships...

NOTHING HAPPENED!

She repeatedly pressed on the buttons on the control levers... now at a more feverish pace.

The laser cannon was not firing...

Allura quickly activated the ion darts...lion torches...even the wing deflection apparatus, located on the back of Black Lion...and still nothing!

Seconds later, alert signals began going off in the cockpit, and the console lit up like a Christmas tree.

She looked up suddenly...gasping...

The weapon matrix was offline...diabled!

Fighting panic, Allura quickly opened up a link to the Castle of Lions...

"Coran!  Coran!  Come in, Coran!"

"Princess...why haven't you engaged the enemy?" Coran's voice shouted through the COM link.

"My weapons system...its...its offline!" Allura proclaimed, suddenly pushing any button on the console in a random, irratic manner.

"What?" Coran shouted.  "Impossible!  Princess.. try your manual override switch!"

Black Lion's sensor alarms began going off now, as well.  Several G'Donar ships had broken through the air fleet's line of defense...and were now incoming to her position.

She tried the override, flipping the switch back and forth, several times, while at the same time, pressing down on the laser cannon activation button.

Nothing was happening...

She looked up at the monitor once again...

The enemy was closing in on Black Lion...fast!

"NO WEAPONS, CORAN!  REPEAT...I STILL HAVE NO WEAPONS!" Allura shouted suddenly.

"Retreat, Princess!" Coran shouted at her.  "Take to the air...QUICKLY!"

Allura reacted almost immediately...pulling the lion control levers upward.  The Black Lion immediately began to pull away from the Castle, heading upward into the sky.  Nearly forty ships, both G'Donar and Doom, darted up after her.

"They are right behind you, Allura!" Coran shouted, anxiously. "Evasive maneuvers!"

"I know...I KNOW!" she screamed in response.

She began feeding in repeated orders into the lion's computer console, rebooting the weapons systems over and over again, attempting to get the matrix to restart and come up online.

She zoomed left and then right again...and the sweat began beading on her forehead.

Reasoning things through as she tried to escape the pursuing ships, Allura tried to think things through.

Logically...what would have gone wrong with the systems that was preventing the weapons system from activating?

The dyno-therm crystal was working correctly...

The Mega-thrusters were operational...

If there was an existing problem...why didn't Pidge detect it, when he was working on the lion...

As if a revelation had hit her, she instantly realized why the weapons systems were not operational...

"Oh no...PIDGE!" she screamed, as the revelation consumed her.

Pidge had been installing his cloaking gadget into the Black Lion. Allura suddenly reasoned that Pidge must have been in the process of reconfiguring the weapons system matrix of the Black Lion, to
accomidate the power fluctuation ...when Hunk interrupted him.

He never had the chance to finish...and never alerted the Castle to that affect.

She suddenly became very angry at herself for not completing her pre-flight check.  Had she have realized that there was a malfunction in the weapons systems, she would have abandoned the Black Lion, in favor of her beloved Blue Lion.

Now, it was a game of chase...and she was the prize!

Allura's mind began racing...


"They're gaining on me!  I can't turn and fight...because I have no weapons to fight with!  What do I do now!  What can I do, now?"

.