|This article is about a/an episode in Power Rangers HyperForce.|
Vesper's Betrayal is the sixth episode of a tabletop RPG show Power Rangers HyperForce.
The HyperForce Rangers are tasked with helping escort refugees to Corinth City, but things begin to spiral downhill after the people they're meant to protect are abducted. A well-kept secret about one of the Rangers has been exploited, and due to the nature of this world, it does not bode well for the rest of the team.
Having met M and now being part of the caravan to Corinth City, the HyperForce Rangers speculate that perhaps they're in a post apocalyptic future in which the Alliance had successfully conquered the world. After taking a closer look at the vehicles, however, they quickly realize this is not the case, as most of them appear to have been built in the 20th century. M finally explains what she knows in greater detail—the world was conquered by an army of machines led by a computer virus called Venjix. The Rangers consider Venjix to be a plausible reason as to why the ship and Alpha 55 malfunctioned, though the safety of the Hyper Zords is unclear.
M tells the Rangers that a voice has been frequenting radio broadcasts with the same message over and over again, a message warning people that they need to get to Corinth City to seek refuge. She invites the Rangers to travel with her in an old, worn down truck. Before they depart, Jack advises Marv to gather information from the refugees. Chloe decides to tag along and play the role of bad cop just for fun. Marv asks a snooty rich boy named Chaz Winchester what year it is, and Chaz stiffly replies, "It's 2009, or something."
The Rangers find themselves torn between possibilities. On the one hand, this is a completely different 2009 outside of their own, a possibility which Jack believes is the most likely. On the other hand, this is now the true 2009 from the Hyper Force Rangers' history that came about as a result of their failure in 1994, which Marv is more inclined to believe. They file into M's truck and depart. As they head out into the wasteland, they find discomfort in breathing in the dry, dusty air. Jack takes a seat upon a yellow box, which M points out to be a surplus radiation detector. Having to deprive Jack of a seat to match his Ranger color, the Rangers pick up the vibrant apparatus and examine it. Its numbers indicate that the radiation level in the air is just shy of critical. The Rangers take a few precautionary measures, covering their mouths with anything they could use as a filter. M laments not having sufficient medical equipment to deal with radiation sickness.
M goes on to explain that the refugees' homes were attacked by flying drones piloted by robots called Grinders, all of which were created by Venjix. Eddie cautiously watches the tracking indicator in his morpher until the signal is too far out of range, indicating that they're too far away from their Zords and the time ship. Marv continues to believe that this world was a result of his screw-up, but Chloe reassures him that he did nothing wrong and that they can figure this out. As they converse, M can't help but overhear them. Remembering what Vesper said about them being Rangers, she asks them if they're familiar with the secret government think tank that created the "Ranger Series" technology. Upon finding out that Power Rangers exist in this world, Marv strays from the idea that this was his fault. The Hyper Force Rangers agree that since their actions here have no consequences in their timeline since this world is outside their own, they may need the help of the Rangers native to it. They also realize there's no need to keep secrets here, so they express their willingness to be open and honest with M.
Corinth City is still a ways off, and the caravan has to travel through another city first before the refugees reach their destination. M talks a bit more about this world's Rangers, stating that only the strongest people were selected to don the colors. Before she can say more, the voice she previously mentioned becomes audible over the radio.
"If you can hear my voice, please, go now to the domed city of Corinth! It's the only place we can be safe! But you have to make it inside the city walls before the defense shield is activated! Please, hurry!"
During the ride, Vesper and Eddie share a discreet conversation. Vesper reveals to Eddie that she was adopted, and that she never really felt like she fit in anywhere until she became a Power Ranger. Eddie offers her some words of encouragement, reminding her that she's an irreplaceable asset to the team. Vesper asks Eddie if they can go out together for a date once this whole mess is over, and Eddie happily consents to her request.
The sky begins to darken as the caravan approaches the ruined city before them. To their relief, the radiation in this particular area is significantly lesser. Realizing a storm is coming, M puts their journey on hold and advises everyone to find shelter in the wreckage of what they now know is called Omega City. M also advises everyone to search the city for usable supplies. Jack declines the use of tents, suggesting that they need better cover from the radiation and the elements contaminating the air. M comes across an abandoned ice cream parlor and motions the Rangers over. Jack, Marv, and Chloe follow her inside. In the back, they find a nonfunctional walk-in freezer that's been gummed up by dried ice cream. M bludgeons the handle with a fire extinguisher until the freezer door opens.
The interior of the freezer reeks of expired ice cream and stale ingredients. To eliminate the foul odor, Chloe incinerates the rotten edibles with her Hyper Blade Blaster, prompting a bewildered M to extinguish the flames. The group takes a moment to remove all the gunk from the freezer. Outside, Eddie helps refugees gather firewood. Vesper offers to assist Chaz Winchester by providing a complimentary haircut, and she manages to shave a few locks off his head with her Hyper Blade Blaster. He attempts to slap her, but she catches his hand and shakes it, thinking it to be a friendly gesture. The storm begins to pick up, and M signals for everyone to come inside the ice cream shop. The Rangers observe that there are a total of 15 people under their watch.
Vesper tries her hand at comedy to lighten the mood. She receives a snobbish laugh from Chaz and his parents, but eagerly accepts it as praise. Jack and Marv leave the shop for a moment to talk, but as Jack tries to tell Marv that he wasn't the reason Marv was fired from police duty, harsh winds pick up, forcing everyone to stay inside. As the refugees hide inside the freezer with Vesper, Chloe, and Eddie, they all hear an intimidating humming, believing it to be a Venjix drone. Jack and Marv stay outside of the freezer to investigate. Vesper calms down the refugees by singing a cheerful song about the Hyper Force Rangers being from the year 3016.
Grinders appear on foot to storm into the ice cream shop and attack. Marv and Jack fight back as best they can, then Marv makes his way to the roof to see if he can locate the source of the humming sound. Vesper and Chloe leave the freezer to join the fray. Eddie monitors the back door but is soon alerted by Marv that a Grinder got past him and is entering the shop. Eddie leaves M to handle the back door and exits the freezer to take out the intrusive Grinder, as well as a second one. Unfortunately, this distraction allowed Grinders to break into the freezer and kidnap all of the refugees. M was able to avoid being taken.
Marv blames himself for what happened because he was too busy scouting about on the roof. M blames herself because those refugees were in her care. Eddie blames himself because he left M to fend for herself. The three of them realize they need to stop playing the blame game and get moving if they want to rescue the refugees and make it safely to Corinth. The storm has lessened and the area is steadily becoming brighter. Because of this, the Rangers and M are able to notice footprints leading away from their itinerary. Vesper hardwires Chaz's car to function, and the group commandeers the vehicle to search for the refugees. The warning message rings over the radio once more, reminding the Rangers that time is against them. The tracks lead further out into the wasteland, and eventually the footprints are intercepted by tire tracks. Either the refugees were saved or they were taken by the machines. What the group sees off in the distance makes what happened fairly apparent.
Just ahead, beyond a hill, a large factory looms ominously. Thick, black smoke billows out of a set of smokestacks. Chloe exits the car and scouts ahead, seeing two Grinders patrolling the perimeter on motorcycles. As she observes the patrol, an archway up high on a balcony illuminates, and from it emerges another robot, this one looking quite different from the Grinders. He was designed rather dapper, having slicked-back metal hair, a monocle, and a suit. He is also seen carrying a gun and a sword. Chloe quickly reports back to the others, and they all morph. M is delighted to see a team of Power Rangers. Marv gives her his Hyper Blade Blaster so she can defend herself. Using the fire extinguisher that M took from the ice cream shop, Vesper rigs Chaz's car to drive off on its own, causing it to swerve uncontrollably down the hill and ram into a smokestack.
Like fire ants to a disturbed nest, hundreds of Grinders emerge from the factory in response to the crash. As the Rangers rush forward, they see the refugees trapped in an outdoor alleyway between the two sections of the factory, guarded by three Grinders. Jack directly engages the horde of Grinders while Marv and Chloe try and help the refugees. In the process of trying to save them, Chloe accidentally harms Chaz's mother, alarming her.
The armed robot stops Vesper before she can enter the factory. The two briefly fight, with Eddie sliding in to intercept one of the robot's attacks. The robot observes Vesper, then sensually slides his hand across her shoulder and around to the back of her neck. Immediately, she begins to feel weak and lifeless, like she's slipping out of herself. Her eyes light up red and her body becomes alive with rage as the Venjix virus infects her from head to toe. Amused at the knowledge that the Black Hyper Force Ranger is actually an android, he seizes control of her and forces her to attack Eddie, introducing himself to his next victim as Kilobyte.
Jack joins up with Chloe and Marv to assist them, and they successfully fend off the three Grinders. Chloe is still in shock after accidentally harming Chaz's mother. Jack attempts to warn them that something isn't right with Vesper, but Vesper then contacts Marv and tells her that something isn't right with Jack. Marv seems to believe Vesper's words, but before anymore questions can be asked, a cage drops down from above, trapping all of the refugees along with the three Rangers.
Vesper relentlessly attacks Eddie, harshly injuring him. Eddie tries to wake Vesper up by showing her the wrench she gave him. She attempts to grab it and destroy it, but she cannot even grasp the wrench without hesitating. Kilobyte refuses to allow this touching scene to continue, delivering a devastating slash to Eddie with his sword. A heavily enfeebled Eddie is dragged off toward the factory by two Grinders, unable to move.
- Peter Sudarso - Marvin Shih (HyperForce Red Ranger)
- Andre Meadows - Eddie Banks (HyperForce Blue Ranger)
- Paulie Schrier - Jack Dealgoode Thomas (HyperForce Yellow Ranger)
- Cristina Vee - Vesper Vasquez (HyperForce Black Ranger)
- Meghan Camarena - Chloe Ashford (HyperForce Pink Ranger)
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- Episode on YouTube
- Episode VOD on Twitch (Exclusive to Hyper RPG susbcribers)
- Fireside Chat on Twitch (Exclusive to Hyper RPG subscribers)