"What the Future Holds"

Story by Adele
Story Copyright 2002
A story based on the series, "Voltron, The Third Dimension"

The characters of Voltron are the property of World Event Productions.  All other characters are the copyright of Adele Previte.  Please do not use them without asking for permission.  Thank you.  Enjoy!

Chapter 24
The Time Travelers

Lance, Pidge, Hunk, Allura, and Sven stared at what appeared to be another Voltron.  But how could that be?  

"Hey guys, Lotor's command ship is leaving!" Pidge alerted the team.  "Do we want to go after it?" 

"Are you kidding, Pidge?" Lance suddenly squealed.  "This is huge!  We're looking at ourselves.  This is way more important than Lotor!"

"We're receiving a hail from...Voltron Commander?"  Hunk said, now shaking his head.

"Keit?" Sven asked.

"I don't think so, Sven."  Hunk replied cautiously.   "Not unless Keith was transformed into a female!"

"Poor guy... hope not!"  Lance joked.  "But I've always wondered what Keith would look like in drag!  Ha!"

"Oh, Lance.  What a mean thing to say!"  Allura huffed.  "This is serious!  There's no time for joking around!   We have no idea who or what these people are!  And we have no idea if Keith is even alive or dead!"

"Sorry, Princess."  Lance said, a bit more straight.

"Well, lets put it on screen and see what this is about."  Pidge said as he responded to the hail.

Everyone gasped.  There was a woman on the screen... and she resembled Allura! 

Pidge blinked hard a few times.  "She looks...she looks like the Princess!"

Allura stared at the screen;  "It's like looking atmyself!"  She said under her breath, giving some thought to her original notion that this Voltron was from an alternate universe.  Maybe, this was what she looked like there!

She shook herself to reality, addressing the young woman.  "I am Princess Allura of Planet Arus.  Identify yourself and your intentions at once!"

"Greetings.  I am the Commander of Voltron.  My name is Andretta.  We've traveled back in time to be here at this very moment.  I realize this is hard to understand.  We also realize that you probably can't take us back to Arus, because you don't know who we really are.  But we need to talk and explain a few things.  I think it would be best to fly to Planet Mira, which is nearby.  We can talk there."

"Why go there?"  Lance responded.  "That's mostly a water planet."

"It's suitable for us to all meet face to face, and it's the closest to our present location." The commander said.  "Please, meet us there at once."

Lance paused...this woman sounded as stiff as Keith!  "Well, you seem to know this area pretty well!"

"No more talk...just meet us on Mira." The female commander said.  "All of you questions will be answered there."

"Wait jist one a minute, you've got one of our party!  We want him back first!"  Sven interrupted.

"He will be returned to you on Mira." The young female replied crisply. 

"How...how is he?" Allura asked.

The young woman smiled brightly and let out a brief giggle.  "Not to worry, Princess.  He's okay.  Just a bit winded, that's all, but being well cared for, I assure all of you.  Now please, lets hurry, there's much to talk about."  The commander insisted, and then the COM went out.

"Well team, what do we do?" Lance said.  "I don't trust her!"

Allura came over the COM.  "We go.  We have to.  They have Keith with them.  But somehow, I don't feel threatened by them.  Its as if...I don't know... like I feel I know them somehow.  Silly, isn't it?"  Allura finished.

"Let's just go and find out what this is all about!" Pidge finished.

Destination:  Planet Mira: 

When they arrived on the ground, six figures flew out from the lion heads of the second Voltron and headed toward the ground.  Keith was among them. 

Lance, Allura, Pidge, Hunk and Sven met them there.  They all removed their helmets. The new group consisted of two young woman and three young men.  Keith ran toward his familiar team members and they embraced each other.

Allura was still hugging Keith tightly after everyone had let go.  "Oh Keith!  I was so afraid I'd never see you alive again!  I couldn't bear the thought...."

"Its okay, Princess.  I'm fine now thanks to them."  Keith pointed toward the pilots standing behind him.  He turned around and faced them.  "Okay, now tell us what this is about.  Who are you?"

"I know you have a lot of questions." The woman they recognized as the 'commander' spoke first.  "Let's do an introduction."

"Okay.  I'm Keith Hunter, the Commander of Voltron.  This is Princess Allura of."

"Of Arus, yes, we know all of you." The commander said.  She pointed to each person.  "You're Lance Andrews, Pidge Villatoro, Hunk Simon and Sven B'Yourn. You see, we know each of you."

Pidge and Hunk looked at each other, with puzzled expressions on their faces.  Lance, however, was not amused.  "Okay, how do you that?" he said, his face crossed with suspicion.

"See" the commander smiled.  "I knew you'd have a lot of questions!"

"Alright...you've got an advantage on us, then.  Now, who are you?"  Keith asked, taking a defensive position by crossing his arms over his chest. 

The commander began an introduction of her team.  Pointing to her far left, she began with the woman Keith recalled seeing in the Blue Lion.

"This is Susanna.  She's our pilot of Blue Lion."  She waved slightly, not really appearing to be very interested in the whole thing.  She seemed a bit stand-off-ish...like she didn't really want to be bothered with all of this nonsense.

Next in line was a young man with jet-black hair.  "That's Kevin.  He's my second in command, pilot of Yellow Lion and my brother." 

"How are you?"  Kevin said with a little smile.  He seemed to be shy.  He immediately put his head down.  Allura couldn't help noticing that he too, resembled her in appearance.  He also, strangely enough, looked somewhat like Keith, too.

"Next to him is Kyle.  He's also my brother, and pilot of Red Lion," The commander said.

"Hey, how ya doing?"  He casually addressed the group. He also had dark black hair and bore a striking resemblance to Keith.  This was getting weird now.

"Next to him is our miracle worker.  That's Tyler, pilot of Green Lion."  Tyler was a small, wiry young man, with brownish red hair and freckles.  His eyes were deep blue, and almost stared back at you, like a mirror.

The youth was bouncing up and down like a rubber ball "This is excellent!  I can't believe we did it!" Then Tyler looked at Pidge.  "See, I told you it would work!"

"Huh?" Pidge said....not really sure what to make of this guy!

"Tyler is are techno-wiz kid." The commander said.

Finally, it was time for 'the commander' to introduce herself.  Lance just kept staring at her.  She looked so much like Princess Allura, that it was scary.  Her hair was golden blonde, like Allura's.  Her eyes were sky blue, and her facial features resembled Allura's too.  

Lance leaned over toward Hunk and whispered in his ear "She could be Allura's daughter, you know?" 

Hunk whispered back a reply to Lance.  "Say, you know, I was just thinking the same thing!  Wouldn't it be a hoot if she was, and she came back in time from our future?" 

"What are you babbling about?"  Lance chuckled back.  "I was just kidding, Hunk!"

"Well, what if they did come back in time?"  Hunk snorted, pushing his nose to the air.  "Its possible, you know!"

"Yeah, right!"  Lance chuckled again, and turned his attention back to the strange group of youth before him.

"And now" the young commander began.  "Let me introduce myself to you.  As I said, my name is Andretta...  Andretta Camille DeVille-Hunter, Commander of Voltron, pilot of the Black Lion and...your future Princess of Planet Arus."

"WHAT?"   Keith gasped aloud.  An assortment of gasps filled the air. 

"How can you be Princess of Arus?  What do you mean by that?"  Allura suddenly walked a few steps forward and protested.  "I'm the only Princess of Arus!  I'm the only surviving ruler of Arus!  King Alfor, my father, was..."

"Yes, Grandfather Alfor, the King of Arus.... fought bravely against King Zarkon in the Lion Wars.  I know the story well...you've told it to me many times."  Andretta announced.

"I've told it to you?  I don't understand what's going on here!  I don't even know you!  None of us know who you are!"  Allura shouted, her hands now clinched in a fist at her side.  "I've never met you until now!  I think this is a very cruel joke you're playing!  And if you're working for Zarkon, you can just go back to him and tell him I'm not amused!"

"Princess Allura...I am your daughter of the future!"  Andretta blurted out, trying to convince the woman she knew later in life as 'mother'.  "Please, believe me when I tell you this!"

Allura and the rest stood in shock as they looked onto the group.  Allura started to shake her head in disagreement.  "This...this can't be true..."

Kevin lifted his head up, and stared straight at Allura "Its true!  You're our mom!  You've got to believe us!"

"And who's your your father?" Keith asked, afraid of the answer, as he looked at the resemblance of himself in the two boys introduced as Princess Andretta's brothers.

Andretta was silent for a moment.  Then she spoke up.  "You... are our father."

Keith's mouth nearly hit the ground.  He turned and looked at Allura, who was now blushing with embarrassment.   Keith then looked back at Andretta, his own cheeks beginning to flush. "So then Kevin and Kyle are..."

"...are Princes of Arus...and your sons as well.  Yes."

"I think I'm going to be sick."  Allura said as she slipped to the ground, holding her stomach, still wearing the black dress Lotor had tried to marry her in.  "I had... or will have... three children?  This is too much..."  She buried her head in her hands in disbelief. "Just when I thought the day couldn't get any worse..." she thought.

"Actually, you said you might do something like that."  Kevin said, scratching his head nervously.  "You...uh, Mom said that knowing herself, she'd be shocked beyond reasoning."

"Let me guess...I said that to you before you came back to the past." Allura said, still looking at the ground, mesmerized by shock.

Kevin smiled a bit, but didn't respond.  He just shrugged his shoulders and returned his gaze back to the ground as well.  Keith, still bewildered, trying to process all of this, said,  "Now, let me get this straight.  You're here from our future?"

"That's right.  We came back to help you.  A tragic accident happened to my father at this time in his life." Andretta began to tell the complicated story.  "Although he lived after he was rescued from this event, his brain was damaged from loss of oxygen.  He was no longer able to have full control of his body or mind.  Walking was difficult, and quick judgements were near impossible.  It was then that Sven had returned to Voltron as Blue Lion's pilot, and my mother, the Princess, assumed the role of leader.  My father was restricted to duties in the Castle's control room.  He was left unable to pilot any of the lions any longer, because he was unable to make fast maneuvers, as he had been accustomed to doing.  It was about a year later that Mother and Father married, and Princess Allura was crowned Queen of Arus.  Father was crowned Consort King of Arus.  Although they have a happy marriage, it's always filled with turmoil because he never got over not being in the thick of battle.  His military career, as he knew it, was over."

Kyle continued....  "When Coran died, Father assumed full operations of the Castle Control.  Yet all the time he was angry at what Lotor and Hagar left him as.  He never could get over that anger.  It nearly destroyed him."

"And so, why are you here?"  Hunk asked, scratching his head.  "To change all that?"

Andretta looked up, tears forming in her eyes.  "We heard our father's story of his time travel experience, when he returned to the past in order to change the future...to save our mother's life.  So, we decided to try this out, hoping we could change the future for our father too."

"But in doing so, couldn't you be changing your own lives too?"  Pidge said.  "I mean, what if any of you had been killed, then where would you be in the future?"

"That was a risk we were all willing to take." Susanna piped in.  "Turned out to be a good gamble."  She gave the group a quick nod.

Lance looked long and hard at Susanna.  She reminded him of himself, in a strange sort of way.  "Something about her" he thought as he looked at the girl.

The group suddenly became quiet.  Allura looked up from the ground.  "Did you ever know Coran?"

"We've only seen pictures our mother had of him."  Kyle replied.  "She said he saved her life during the raids the forces of Doom held, before the Voltron force arrived from Earth.  She was still a young child then, and he raised her as his own daughter teaching her how to be a Princess.  She said he was pretty strict, but always fair and kindhearted."

Allura stood up, still confused, but more trusting, and interested to hear their story further.  She turned to face her team "Perhaps we could bring them back to Arus..."

"Are you nuts, Allura?" Lance interrupted angrily, looking at the Princess as if she had lost her mind.  "How can we be sure this isn't Lotor's doing?  What if these people are fakes?  We'll be opening Arus up for invasion at the front door!"

Susanna stepped forward.  "My father told me you might do something like this.  He gave me this to give to you.  He said... you would know what it was."

Lance turned around and looked at her, his angry eyes piercing her deeply.  "Oh right!  Your father just happened to know I was going to object to this...and now, you just happened to have something to show me!  Give me a break, lady!  I know who you people are and what you're up to!  You can just tell Lotor we're not buying it!" 

Susanna just shook her head.  "Please, just look at it, just for a minute!"

Lance huffed, then reached out this hand and Susanna slipped the item into his palm.  He opened it up and looked at it.  His face...suddenly, it was as if the blood rushed out of it.  Tears started to come to his eyes as his gazed was now fixed on the object he was holding.

"What is it, Lance?"  Pidge asked as he walked over toward him. 

Lance closed his eyes tight and held his breath for a moment.  He couldn't believe it was true. But who else would know the meaning of the small item, except himself?  He'd never even told his teammates.  He never even confided in his best friend, Keith. 

In his hand, he held a dog tag.  It read simply, "Champ".  Lance opened his tear-swelled eyes and looked at it again. 

"This was my dog back home." he began to tell his tale to everyone present.  "The day Zarkon attacked my planet and wiped out my village, my dog, Champ, saved my life.  He took the blast that one of Zarkon's ghouls shot at me.  He died protecting me that day." 

Pidge remained silent.  Keith looked over with compassion on his friend.  "Lance...I...I didn't know this.  I'm so sorry." 

Lance looked up into the sky.  "I never forgot him.  Champ saved my life that day.  I've kept his tag ever since.  But I never told anyone about it, not even you, Keith.  I just couldn't."  He looked back to Susanna.  He began to intensely study her face.  Something about her...

"How did you know about this?"  Lance asked Susanna, still looking strangely at her.

"My father told me about it before we left.  It was to prove to you that we are who we say we are.  Otherwise, how would I know this?"  Susanna said.

"Then...I must be your father?"  Lance asked.  "I'm right, aren't I?"

Susanna nodded her head quietly.  "Uh-huh." 

Lance blinked several times before finally speaking again.  "I felt in my heart that I was.  Even before you said it."

Lance and Susanna looked at each other for awhile.  Susanna finally spoke up.  "So, I'm not sure what to do here.  Should I hug you or what?"

Lance's eyes opened up a bit.  "Well yeah, I guess so."

They both approached each other and hugged.  Susanna loosely embraced him.  "Wow, this is so weird!  I'm hugging my dad, before he was my dad!" 

"Me too.  I didn't think I'd ever get married!  I always thought I'd be a loner for the rest of my life."  The two broke off the awkward embrace and locked eyes with each other.  "Frankly, I didn't think there was a woman alive that could handle my attitude!"

"I'll say!"  Pidge shouted sarcastically.  "The poor woman, whoever she is!"  Then he let out a laugh.

"Pipe down, pip-squeak!"  Lance blurted back at Pidge.   Susanna giggled.

"Yeah, well Mom has had her moments with you.  Sometimes you two would fight into the wee hours of the morning.  Drove me nuts, sometimes!"  Susanna winked.  "But then, you always made up and that sort of thing."

Lance just shook his head.  "This is just so weird!"

"Tell me about it!" Susanna said. 

Lance scratched his head, suddenly curious about one thing "When did I give up being on the Voltron Force?  I never wanted to give up Red Lion.  And why are you flying the Blue Lion instead of the Red Lion?  I would think my daughter would want to carry on in my place, with my lion!"

Susanna bent over laughing aloud.  Lance was caught off guard with her laughing about the subject of his Red Lion.  "What's so funny?"  He blurted out, her insensitivity now suddenly annoying him. 

Susanna looked up and gained some composure.  "Oh Dad, its like nothing changes with you!  You and I had this same conversation in my time!  As I recall, you were outright shocked that I chose Blue Lion rather than Red Lion!  You said I insulted you!"  She started to laugh again.

"Well, that is an insult...of sorts.  And just why didn't you chose Red Lion?"  Lance asked, raising his voice a bit.

"Well, I like the color blue.  So, I wanted to fly Blue Lion."  Susanna responded, frankly.

"That's not a good excuse!" Lance shouted, now outright angered with her.  "Red Lion is my heart and soul!  How could you totally ignore him because you like the color blue?"

"Dad, you're starting again."  Susanna snorted quietly.  A frown was slowly replacing the smile she had only moment ago.

"This doesn't count!  I wasn't there when I had this discussion with you before!"  Lance barked back...then stopped and turned to look at Keith, Allura, and the rest of his team.  "Can you believe this kid?  She flies Blue Lion because it's her favorite color!  I don't get it!  Someone want to explain this to me?"

Allura stepped forward, "Lance, you don't just fly Red Lion, you've bonded with it."

"Right that's why it's real hard for me to understand why she wouldn't want to fly Red Lion."  Lance shouted in anger.  "Its like she took that trust I built up with Red Lion, and..."

"That's right!" Allura interrupted. "The trust that  you've built up with Red Lion; Susanna hasn't felt that same bonding with Red Lion as you have.  She feels it with Blue Lion.  She experiences a bond with Blue Lion that can't be described.  I would dare say, a closeness that goes further than just liking the color blue."  Allura finished speaking to Lance, then turned her attention to Susanna.  "Am I right?"

Susanna looked up after gazing toward the ground.  "Yes, that's it Your Highness!  It's like you've always told all of us...we have to know the lion we are piloting.  It has to just feel right."

Susanna looked at Lance.  His gaze was upward to the sky.  "Dad, I love piloting Blue Lion, as much as you loved piloting Red Lion.  It's enough to say that I'm happy with what I am doing.  Please accept it...accept me and my decision."

Lance brought his gaze to rest on Susanna.  He closed his eyes and took a deep breath in and then slowly let it out again.  He then opened his eyes and looked at her again.  "You're right.  Red Lion was...uh is...special to me.  I can't expect you to feel the same. I'm sorry for my outburst.  Sometimes, I can be such a jerk."

"Sometimes?"  Keith added, rubbing it in.  "That's an understatement!"

Susanna smiled and ran over and hugged Lance again.  "Oh, that's okay.  That's what I love so much about you.  You and I are alike, according to Mom.  And that's why we clash so much.  But we always bow heads in peace with each other in the end."

Keith turned back to...his offspring...with a few more questions.  "So, how do we all fit into play here?  When did these guys give up piloting the Lions of Voltron?" he asked, pointing to his team.

Kevin stepped forward and spoke.  "It was like this:"

"Our group was young, but no amateurs to piloting and combat skills. Andretta is the oldest at 19 years old, I'm next at 17, right behind me is Susanna at 17 too, and Tyler's almost 17 years old.  Lastly, there's Kyle, who's 15 years old but smart as a whip.  You couldn't out pilot him on his worst day!"

Kyle continued.  "Dad was already on the ground assisting with the everyday functions of the Lions of Voltron.  It wasn't until Mom's Black Lion had a severe crash, that things changed drastically.  During a routine exercise in flight maneuvers, Black Lion malfunctioned.  It lost control and crashed to the ground.  Mom got pretty badly banged up."

Andretta picked up the story:

"Dad and the others started talking.  He was really upset that the crash could have caused Mom's death.   As reigning Queen of Planet Arus, she must remain safe at all costs.  Dad was always uncomfortable about the fact that he was not up there in battle, protecting the Queen from harm.  Mom had often battled Doom's evil forces from Black Lion while pregnant with Kevin, Kyle and of course myself.  Soon after the crash, it was determined that Queen Allura should step down as leader of Voltron and allow another champion to take her place.  Lance, Hunk and Sven volunteered to take over the position.  But when I suddenly announced my desire to become Voltron Commander, Dad had a fit!  Even though I had flown many times, and in fact could out maneuver all present Voltron Force pilots, and had also been trained, as had all of us, by Lance on piloting the robot lions, Dad still didn't feel I was right for the job.  He was concerned that my age of 19 years old was still too young an age to be prepared for the stress of command.  It wasn't really until Hunk made the suggestion...that all of them should step down, and give us the chance to carry on as the next generation of Voltron defenders, that Dad finally started to take it all under consideration.  He realized finally, that he was no older than we were when he became a captain in the Galaxy Alliance."

"I can see why I would be cautious.  Command is a big responsibility, and shouldn't be taken lightly by anyone."  Keith commented.

Kyle finished the story:

"Well, old Lance about blew his cork.  Saying... 'You'll never make me give up my Red Lion!'. It wasn't until King Lotor..."

"King Lotor?"  Hunk now interrupted.  "You mean to tell me that the scumbag actually survives to be king?"

"Not only that..." Kyle added, "but he was still so obsessed with Mom, that his attacks increased in frequency as time went on.  Once his father, King Zarkon, died, he was free to do whatever he wanted.  It was his hope that he would somehow wear down Arus's defenses and Queen Allura of Arus would be right where he'd want her to be.  Anyway, when King Lotor attacked the planet's outer defense systems, it was time to send Voltron up to once again defeat the forces of Doom.  Pidge convinced Mom and Dad to let us go.  All of us knew the lions like we knew ourselves.  We were ready... I knew we were.  So, off we flew to defend Arus.  We were successful...and not only that, we had a renewed strength that showed through Voltron too.  Lotor was forced back in retreat.  Andretta commanded us like Dad use when he was Voltron Commander.  She was masterful!  Dad had no objections afterward.  He even said he was proud of our decision to fly the lions to defend Arus.   He knew the time had finally come to turn it over to the next generation."

"And that's the story of how we became the new pilots of Voltron."  Tyler finished.

Pidge looked at the young man standing before him. "Please don't tell me that I'm your father!"  Pidge said, as he took a deep breath, not sure if he was ready to hear the answer.
"I don't know if I can handle hearing that from someone who's the same age as me right now!"

"Nope.  I'm not your son."  Tyler replied cheerfully.

Pidge exhaled in relief.  "Cool"

"I'm your nephew!"  Tyler added.

"My WHAT?"  Pidge piped up. 

"Yeah!  My dad is your brother, Chip!" Tyler replied with  a smile.  "He's a real cool dad too!"

"You mean to tell me that my brother had a son?" Pidge puzzled, trying to get a visual in his head of his older brother, playing the role of a father.

"Yep.  You might call me a 'chip' off the old 'Chip'!"  Tyler joked.  "I also have a sister.  Her name's Alicia.  She's 11 year old.'

Pidge's brother, Chip, serves on the Galaxy Alliance Defensive Force, Earth Unit.  Pidge was assigned to the Arusian Unit, leaving Earth behind to seek out the legend of Voltron while responding to the distress call sent out by Arus, more than seven years ago.

Since then, Pidge hasn't seen his brother, not since Chip was reassigned on Mars.  But after looking at Tyler, it was very evident that he was Chip's son.

"You look just like Chip."  Pidge said plainly.

"That's a under statement, since its apparent I look like you too, Uncle Pidge."  Tyler replied.  "I hope you don't mind me calling you that!"

Pidge shook his head.  "Whoa, this is too weird for me!" 

Hunk piped up.  "Hey Pidge-O, you're an uncle!"

"Yeah. Guess so. Hey did I ever get married?"  Pidge asked Tyler.

"Nope, you and old Hunk here are inseparable buds.  Neither one of you are married yet.  You two just hang out together, goofing off, doing weird stuff."  Tyler replied.

"Gee, that's too bad," Hunk said.  Then he turned and looked at Pidge. "No offense there buddy!"

"None taken, Hunk!"  Pidge said back. 

Sven was staring off into space, deep in thought.  He had yet to say anything about any of this.  Keith walked over to his troubled-looking friend, and laid his hand on his shoulder.  Sven looked at Keith and swung around quickly to address the group of young fliers.  "So, can you tell me vhat happens to me in da future?  Where iz Princess Romelle and Prince Bandor of Planet Pollux?"

The young pilots looked at each other.  It was Susanna who spoke up to answer the question.  "Well, you become a General on Arus, commanding Queen Allura's Lion Knights; the name given to the royal military."

"And what of Romelle and Bandor?"  Sven asked insistently.  "What happens to dem?"

"Well Princess Romelle became your wife, and is now living with you on Arus, in the court of Queen Allura.  But Prince Bandor...well I'm afraid that he unfortunately was killed while struggling in battle with King Lotor."  Susanna said, solemnly breaking the news.

Allura gasped in shock, covering her mouth with her hand.  "Oh poor Bandor! This can't be true!"  As she was shaking her head at the news of her cousin's future she suddenly felt her face turn pale.   "And Pollux?  What happens to Pollux if Romelle is on Arus?"  she asked, turning her attention to the conversation concerning her cousins.  "I can't imagine my cousin giving up her planet."

Susanna sighed regretfully. "Pollux was destroyed in the same attack that killed Prince Bandor.  Pollux was attacked by King Lotor's creeps and was then ravaged after Bandor's death.  Princess Romelle managed to escape without harm, and entered into exile on Arus, where she later married Sven.  After Lotor searched the Castle and didn't find Romelle, he ordered the destruction of Pollux."  Susanna finished.

"By the time we got there with Voltron, there was only a debris field remaining where Pollux once was.  Lotor completely destroyed the planet and its inhabitants."  Kyle finished.  "Voltron was too late to do anything but pick up survivors that managed to get away in shuttles.  They now live on Arus too." 

Allura hung her head again in sadness.  "This is dreadful!  Bandor is killed, and Pollux is destroyed" She wept aloud, tears swelling in her eyes.  It seemed to her to be a long struggle ahead for the Voltron Force...a long, long road filled with sadness and pain.  She finally started to cry. 

Keith quickly knelt at her side to place his hands on her shoulders, now in an effort to comfort her sorrow.  She looked at him, tears streaking down her cheeks, saying: "Is there no end to Lotor's evil?  It even stretches into the future!  How can we ever survive?"

Keith lowered his head and softly spoke into her ear.  "Like we always do, with determination and the support we all have for each other.  We'll make it, Allura.  Don't you worry."

Allura rose her head up to look at him.  She brought her hands to her face and wiped the tears from her cheeks.  "There must be something we can do now, that will keep these future events from happening."

"Yeah, but will that mean that we lose our children?"  Lance said, pointing to the future Voltron Force.  "If we tamper with destiny too much, we could lose them."

"I don't think so, Lance." replied Pidge.  "I think that the only future that we would affect is Lotor's.  We certainly can at least do something to save Pollux."

Allura nodded her head in agreement.  "We've got to remain strong...for future generations to come."  She then looked at the group as a whole.  "Is there anyone that objects to us bringing Andretta and her party back to the Castle of Lions?"

No one uttered a sound.  "In that case," Allura said, sniffing aloud, "I suggest we not spend any more time here.  Let's get going."

As the group moved toward their individual lions, Andretta hung back for a moment, approaching Allura. 

"Princess," Andretta asked.  "Would it be okay if I called you Mom?  I feel kind of, well, weird calling you 'Princess'.  Okay?"

Allura smiled and nodded.  "That's fine, Andretta.  I must admit its all a bit awkward for me too."

Keith remained in his place for a moment.  Andretta dashed past him.  "Race Black Lion against Black Lion!" she hollered as she ran past. She was not aware that Keith was deep in thought over the events that were taking place. 

He kept thinking to himself about this future business.  No one should be aware of the future in store for them.  No one should know too much about what is to happen.  Surely he above all people should have known that.  He started to question himself.  What was it that Princess Andretta said?  'Their father' was the one who told them how to get back to the past based on his own time shift experience? 

Did the Keith of the future lose his mind?  How could he have been so foolish as to deluge that type of information? 

As he pondered his future self's stupidity and lack of common sense, Allura entered his view.  "So 'Dad', are you going to stay here staring into space, or should we go back home?"

Keith shook off the chatter in his mind and concentrated on Allura.  "What?  What did you say?  I'm sorry, Princess, I wasn't completely here." he apologized.

"Yes, you seemed a million miles away.  Are you thinking what I'm thinking?" She asked him gently.

"Well, I'm thinking first of all, how stupid it was to give the kids information on how to do time travel.  What they did was too dangerous to attempt.  They could have gotten themselves killed!   And they still have to go back home." Keith lectured. 

"Yes, I know" Allura added, as she quietly gazing at the sky above them.  "Did you notice how black the night is here?" she asked, trying to change the subject, but having no success in doing so.

Keith turned and looked up to the sky too.  The stars were out and the sky was full of them.  He took a deep breath and exhaled it. "Do you know what really bothers me about this whole future business, Princess?"

Allura was still staring at the sky above her.  "No.  But I bet I can guess." she said.

There was a long pause...

"Us" he finally said, as he turned his gaze down to the ground. 

He was trying to picture himself with her for the rest of his life.  The trouble was...he could see it...very clearly.  He even wanted it to happen.  But he was afraid for the special friendship they shared.  He didn't even know if she felt the same about him.  Then there was the matter of love itself.  And of course his position as 'a mere pilot'.  How could he possibly court such a beautiful Princess?

He'd really never had time for any serious girlfriends.  His time was so consumed with being the best pilot of the Alliance, and working hard at maintaining it, that the thought of dating was rare.  Thinking to himself, he could count on one hand, all the girlfriends he's had.  It was something Lance had been telling him all of those years through their academy training...

"Keith, you're married to your job.  Live a bit, will ya?  Or you'll miss out on all life has to offer you." 

He's never pursued serious dating with any girl before.  A few dates here and there, perhaps.  But now, he was thinking about it...more than ever.  But how would he even approach her with it? 

A Princess... how could he even ask out someone of her stature?  He suddenly was filled with feelings of unworthiness when he heard Allura's sweet voice again.

"I know.  It all scares me."  Allura responded.  Keith suddenly stopped thinking the hundreds of 'possibility' thoughts in his head, long enough to listen to Allura's response.  It was like she could read his mind.

"Me too."  Keith said aloud.

"More than you know, Princess."  Thinking to himself.

Allura continued.  "But I'm more frightened that Lotor will still be around and will still cause a lot of trouble for us in our future.  And these children will be left facing what we had to face in both Zarkon and Lotor.  I wonder what terrible things await them in their future?"

The two of them gazed once again into the night sky...wondering about many things...
including each other.

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