Part I - Deplaced.
"Sorry, boss." Doc pushed back from the console hotwired with the dashboard of the Ranger Explorer currently filling four of the eight lots on BETA's public parking area. "We've been locked out for good. Seems somebody forgot to renew the lease and—" He shrugged. "Now it's been reregistered, and somebody demands serious money to lease it back to us!"
"We are a military operation, Hartford!" Walsh groused. "Who would lease a base associated with—" He wiped a hand over his face, shaking his head.
"Somebody impressed by our good press recently? It's not as if Ranger Danger wasn't popul—"
"Don't. Mention. That. Movie," Walsh warned. "Base security is also within the mountain."
"We should be out of Goose's earshot, sir." Doc quipped weakly.
"We aren't out of mine." The commander growled. "Get me back into my office. Now!"
Part II – In Exile
'Now' turned out to take longer than expected. Much longer.
The Rangers managed to stay in the business of protecting Earth and our allies mostly by occupying small rooms and storage areas officially assigned to other branches of the Armed Forces, and by making sure their predicament didn't become known to the rest of the galaxy. Repelling the Crown Armada from BetaMountain via coffee automatons had been tricky, repelling it from storage area 34 B (cleaning supplies) on Phoenix AFB would be a nightmare… if they were lucky.
So far, they were. The Queen was still oblivious – that, or busy with reinstalling her recently trashed Psychocrypt, but they couldn't continue like this for much longer. Walsh's eyes wandered along the rows of mops and buckets underneath shelves with soap and disinfectants and something that looked suspiciously like someone's supply of gummi bears; the room belonged to base services. He sighed. He'd called in basically all favors he still had with the other branches, and some he hadn't had to begin with, and they were still working out of somebody else's backyard base, no somebody else's backyard base services storage. If—
He stopped. Base services.
Part III – A clean sweep
"The ordered full decontamination process of BetaMountain military base and surrounding military property is completed. However, payment is still due because the leaseholder at that time vanished without footing the bill." BETA's senior janitor pushed back his base cap and scratched his scalp. "It's been a thorough job, sir."
Walsh glanced over the table of costs and the impressive 8-digits figure at the end. "Indeed, RB. A clean sweep. Good work."
Lease: think of it as 'domain'.
Ranger Danger is a fictional Tri-D show about the rangers described in Bruinhilda's brutally funny fanfic of the same name. In reality, think about the DVD release. 😊
Crystal Structures – fanfic by A. Kniggendorf