Sorry, Wrong Channel!

A Crossover fanfic by A J

Disclaimer: I don't own any of the characters, but the plot is all mine.

Prequel Chapter 1

Just after Race Against Time:

They'd been trailing the jewelry store 'snatch and scram' thieves for nearly twenty minutes. Finally, it looked like the quartet of crooks had run out of steam in the alleyway up ahead, and Ben and Gwen slowed to a halt behind the nearest dumpster.

"Alright, I'm all for this new 'think it through' phase of yours, Ben, but if we don't do something fast, these creeps are gonna split up and we'll never find them all." Gwen was reciting a kinetic spell under her breath while she waited for her cousin's answer.

"After all that running, I figure you'd appreciate the chance the idiots are giving us to catch our breath," Ben returned sourly. He was grinning over the Omnitrix as he spun through his many choices of alien guises. "Ah-HAH! You want a speedy end to the chase, cuz? XLR8 should do nicely," he continued, settling on the supersonic reptile, and giving the Omnitrix dial its activating push. In a flash of green light, muscles rearranged, bones realigned, and cells reorganized, transforming the otherwise ordinary preteen into his chosen form of …

"Greymatter?! Ah, man, this thing HATES me!" Gwen tried not to giggle too hard at his tinny whine. "And you're enjoying this," he accused, as she reached down and scooped him up.

"How about a lift, 'Hero'?" she snickered, peeking out at the four ski-masked miscreants who were so busy checking out their haul from the jewelry store on an overturned crate that they hadn't even looked up at the flash of green light. Ben just sighed, then perked up as he evaluated his situation at Greymatter-thinking speed.

"Give me your dental floss and a pen from your purse, first, then float me next to the shoes of the one on the left," he instructed. "When you get my signal, tie them up with those discarded packing straps, Gwen," he continued, pointing out several lengths of flat yellow plastic poking out of the next dumpster down the alley.

"Okay, but … what'll be your signal?" she asked, already levitating him over her hand, after handing him his requested tools.

He just turned back to her with a tiny, toothy grin. "You'll know." Gwen sighed and flicked him like a beanie toy towards the skinny guy on the left of the crate.

Settling down between the feet of his target, Ben got to work, running the floss through the laces of the first guy's shoes, then around his ankles, and proceeded to tie him to his three friends, all unnoticed. That done, with only seconds to go on his ten-minute time limit, he squeezed inside the crate they were still checking out their bounty on. 'Gotta lay off the sweets, again, Tennyson. These tiny jobs are getting tough to do,' he thought to himself. Just then, the Omnitrix badge stuck to his back beeped, flashed red, and changed him back into his regular 11-year-old self.

Standing straight up, he hoisted the crate straight over his head, startling the four guys even more than his strange beeps had. (They'd each assumed it was one of the other's cell phones.) Trying to jump back from the suddenly rising crate, the crooks found themselves unexpectedly joined at the feet, and flattened all around him in an award-worthy demonstration of theatrical pratfalling. "NOW, GWEN!"

With a shake of her head for his showing off, Gwen flung her hands out, and several strands of industrial packing strips came flying over and tied each of the four thieves up tightly. Ben set the crate back down awkwardly, trying not to spill all the jewelry off the top of it, and then started to write a hurried note on the back of one of the pillowcases the crooks had used in their heist.

"Just call nine-one-one, tell 'em which alleyway needs cleaned up, and we can hopefully get back to the mall before my parents freak out that we went missing right after the robbery. Hey, maybe we can convince them we just got lost in the crowd … again," Ben told his cousin as they made sure the four guys were secured, and all the jewelry was bagged up in the sack with their note scrawled across it: To the Bellwood PD, from your neighborhood Alien Heroes.

Gwen rolled her eyes. "You don't think it's too subtle, do you?" Instead of his usual blank look, Ben actually chuckled. 'Ha!' she thought, smiling. 'That word-a-day calendar I got him for his birthday isn't going to waste, after all.' Pulling her new 'emergencies only' phone out, she speed-dialed the Bellwood Police Station, and asked for Officer White.

Barry White was the son of the Middle School Principal, Ed White, who named him after the legendary R & B crooner. Barry was also a Plumber, like his father and the Tennyson's Grandpa Max. So whenever they needed a police officer, he was their natural first choice.

"Hello, this is Officer … oh, hi, Gwen. You guys caught another one, huh? Four? Oh, no; you two were just at the mall, weren't you? Uhuh. Yeah. Third and Ganymede, behind Granger's Granary. Okay, thanks, Gwen. And thank Ben, too. See you two at the New Year's Bonfire. Be good you two. Bye."

"Well, that takes care of that," Gwen said, hanging up as they got back to the corner. Ben knelt to tie his shoe, and looked at his watch. (He'd tacky-glued an old wind-up watch face to the band of the Omnitrix in art class, to lend some credibility to wearing the gigantic thing.)

"Geez, Gwen, we've been gone for more than half an hour. Even Sandra and Carl aren't gonna just look the other way this time." His cousin nodded worriedly as he stood up barely in time for the changing light. The pair hurried across the intersection, and started running full out back towards the mall on the far side of main street.

Just as they crossed Second Street, bright lights lit up the sky over Bellwood, looking like the Aurora Borealis come early. "Bezell's Charms," Gwen had time to utter, before a massive energy wave crashed over Bellwood like an avalanche, battering away all that was before.