|Notice: The following is a modified version of part 3 of the ninth episode of Back in Action: Alien Universe, Happily Never Happened for appearance only in the Winter Fanon Con 2012 (but the unmodified version was posted on Monday, December 24th). Take the time to read this part, then read the series from the beginning with the first episode, Infernosphere.|
[We open from Ben's perspective, rapidly blinking as we get mere glimpses of what unfolds, mirroring the exact memory of the following events as Ben remembers. As he feels gravity pulling him down closer to the ground, he opens his eyes for a moment. He closes them. When next he opens them, he is Cannonbolt, laying on his back on the ground as he unrolls with Kevin on his stomach. Kevin gets up off him, and as Cannonbolt reverts to human and Ben's vision is like a human's again, he closes his eyes again. Next, he sees Kevin's car driving itself into the alley Ben's crashed down into, drifting to a stop right next to Ben's head. He closes his eyes. Next he remembers is him waking a last time to an ambush while very close to a hospital, knocking Kevin's car over into a 360. He blinks and sees Kevin dragging him out of the car, holding him over his shoulder, running through the streets towards the hospital, but Kevin trips over something. He closes his eyes once more, and wakes within a containment tube, at last fully alert and aware of his environment. The containment tube is filled with a liquid, not much like water, that keeps him suspended in mid-air. A much smaller tube connected to a respirator on his mouth pumps air into his body from a small tank leaning on the walls of the room he's in. He realizes he has been stripped down to socks and baggy green pants, his actual clothes appearing ripped, sitting outside on a bench near the door of the room. The door opens and two diminutive figures walk in. They turn on the light, which resides low to the ground, and immediately the Omnitrix's hourglass glows green indicating full charge.]
Omnitrix: Omnimatrix battery core fully charged. Running necessary unrecognized shutdown signal diagnostic program B.
Ben: W-who's there? The figures become visible to Ben through the containment tube's liquid.
Driba: It's us, Ben Tennyson.
Blukic: Your friend Kevin Leaving brought you here.
Ben: It's Levin. And, what happened? I barely remember how I got here.
Blukic: You sustained a serious injury.
Driba: Your friend didn't tell us how you got it, though.
Ben: It was some guy. He said he wasn't a Mechamorph, but he looked like he was wearing Azmuth's Aggression armor. He said his name was Meta...Meta-something.
Blukic: Well, if you don't know his whole name, we can't exactly track him down.
Ben: It's no problem. Kevin must be going after him now. I should probably be with him. Let me out of here.
Blukic: Not yet, Ben.
Driba: I concur.
Blukic (two holographic screens appearing before him, rapidly switching which he's primarily focusing on): According to this, your have a "severe spinal injury."
Driba: And that Polymorph Healing Agent you're floating in is fusing with the afflicted areas and reshaping your spine.
Ben: But I don't feel anything. And wouldn't that give me, like, Goop DNA or something?
Driba: Of course not. (Whispering to Blukic) Does it give him "Goop DNA"?
Blukic: I don't think so...
Driba: Well, there you go. Now, we'll need some energy from your Omnitrix to get another sample of Polymorph DNA, because according to this (a holographic screen appears before him as well, displaying alien text, a full-body skeleton of Ben in the containment tube, and arrows pointing to points on the tube and Ben's body) we'll still need you in there for another hour to fix you right up.
Ben: I guess if I need it. The Omnitrix should charge up in that time anyway.
Blukic: Great. And hurry up with it, alright?
Blukic puts on a telepathy helmet, and with it a can much like the one Metalink generated earlier appears in front of him, and he lifts it over to the containment tube and connects it to the glass, pushing it halfway through the glass, causing half of the can to disappear. Ben puts his Omnitrix hand into the can, and minuscule glints of energy float through the Polymorph Healing Agent (PHA) over to the can.
Ben: I almost thought this would be painful.
Driba: Not at all, Ben Tennyson. Now, hurry it up, will you.
Ben: I can't. This thing's going as fast as it can. Can. As a matter of fact, this can thing looks just like the one that Meta guy threw at me earlier...
Blukic: Nonsense. We made this ourselves.
Ben: You're right. I can barely remember him anyway. It was probably just a dream.
Driba: Of course, yes, Ben.
Blukic: Hurry up...
Ben: I'm--Suddenly gasps as he stares into the distance beyond Blukic and Driba who stand right in front of the open door.
Blukic: What? Blukic and Driba turn around to find a second dumbfounded set of Blukic and Driba. Uh-oh...
Ben: What do you mean "Uh-oh"? Who are they?!
The original Blukic and Driba disappear, fading into nothing. Coming into view before Ben is Metalink, who towers over the real Blukic and Driba.
Metalink: Keep charging that thing, Ben Tennyson.
Ben: No way. Rips his hand out of the can, the energy swirling back into the Omnitrix.
Metalink: NOOO! You idiot Galvans!
Driba: We'll have you know we're a very smart sp--Metalink fires a ball made of Polymorph DNA at them, surrounding Blukic and Driba in a sound-proof Polymorph ball.
Metalink: I'll enjoy watching you two attempt to escape that with your oh-so-great higher intelligence. The two bang at the goop-based walls inside and show signs of yelling through their wide-open mouths with moving tongues. Hahaha. Turns around to Ben. I'd avoid escape that tube, Tennyson. Your spine might give out.
Ben: I'm not hurt.
Metalink: Not in that tube, no. It takes away all the feeling in the afflicted areas of your body. Used to use the PHA tube on myself until I built this suit which contains me in it at all times.
Ben: I'm not hurt. I'm getting out of here.
Metalink: Do you really want to take that chance? Why not believe me? Stay in there, hand me the Polymorph sample that I can use to heal you for the coming events.
Ben: I'm not taking a chance because I know you're lying.
Metalink: Okay, if you say so.
Ben: I do say so.
Metalink: No going back...Whatever you transform into will break through that glass, or at least disconnect you from your respirator.
Ben: Stop talking. The Omnitrix tower pops up, flashing between red and green hourglass colors as it does so. Ben looks through for the perfect transformation and selects it.
Benmummy: Benmummy! His papery skin doesn't break through the glass, but something in the PHA containment tube sucks Benmummy into a vent and out of the tube right at the feet of Metalink.
Metalink: How do you feel? Writhing in pain now, Tennyson?
Benmummy: Not one bit. Thep Khufans are great healers, so even if you're telling the truth, I don't feel a thing.
Metalink: Doesn't matter. I have you in my clutches now.
Metalink's Armor: AG-7001 battery level at critical level.
Metalink: And I'm going to need you right now.
A port opens at Metalink's robotic stomach, sucking in Benmummy. When the stomach closes, a glass barrier opens revealing Benmummy in his paper-pile form. As Metalink escapes the room, he kicks Blukic and Driba into the room and locks the door. He then rushes through a crowd of Plumbers and down several flights of stairs to one of the lower levels, where he jumps over the railing and into a room with several warning labels placed on a single control panel laying in the room. He walks up to the panel as Benmummy speaks.
Benmummy: Hey, is that the Null Void Projector?!
Metalink: It can be, but this thing's got a few functions not even the Plumbers have realized.
Benmummy: I doubt it, Metamorph.
Metalink: It's METALINK!
Benmummy: Doesn't matter. It's not like that's your real name. No way a non-Mechamorph would have a name like that.
Metalink: GAH! Shut up and let me do my thing.
Benmummy: You're in the Plumbers' HQ on Earth. Do you really think they're going to let you just come down here and mess with the Null Void Projector.
Metalink: Sure, they will. Because they don't have any other choice. The applications for this module are amazing. I find myself dumbfounded when I see that the Plumbers haven't noticed 'em, especially with a couple of Galvans manning the stations down here. He presses just three buttons, each labelled with etiher a Roman numeral or an alien character. Now for the finisher.
Benmummy: You're not the first to come down here and think he can overload the Null Void projector and reverse Bellwood into it.
Metalink: I know I'm not the first. I also know that that's not what I'm doing. He presses the last button in a sequence, the only one labelled with English letters: "CHROPEX".
Benmummy: Chropex? What's that?
Metalink: You'll see...
Plumber HQ-Wide Intercom (female automated voice): Now engaging portal to Chropex section 18-4. Teleportation sequence 8-6-7-C-X-G. Request location Base 3. Engaged. A small laser gun emerges from the control panel, pointed itself at Metalink.
Benmummy: Oh, you're in for it now.
Metalink: Or so you think. As a crowd of Plumbers dressed in thick armor and equipped with a range of weapons from pistols to rockets rushes down the steps, they standby when they realize Metalink waiting to be shot by the laser gun. The gun fires at him, and just at that point, holographic screens appear all over the walls of the HQ with Max on the screens.
Grandpa Max: All Plumbers at Level 3: GET THAT THING AWAY FROM THE INTRUDER!
The Plumbers find themselves scrambling to get their guns back in position for Metalink, all rushing to get a good spot to shoot him, but the laser from the control panel fires properly, causing Metalink to appear as if he's sucked into a portal inside himself. The portal gun descends back into its holder in the control panel, and everyone, even Max on the holoscreen, appear dumbfounded, jaws dropped as they process this.
[THANKS FOR READING HNH3: WFC Edition]
Once again, feel free to check out Infernosphere (or simply finish reading Happily Never Happened; remember this is part 3 of that) and the rest of Back in Action: Alien Universe, because things are just starting to get good.