A/N: just came to mind as I was reviewing on KandiLip's story 'The End'. Weird how things strike at the worst moments.

Disclaimer: I own no part of Ben 10.


My emerald eyes opened just in time to see Kevin's dark and battered body staggering weakly over to Ben's cold and limp form as the younger version of my cousin stood watching him, knowing he himself was useless and that Kevin was the only one left. And Kevin never stood a chance against Aggregor. He couldn't even take down Ragnarok when the time had come for a one-on-one duel, and Aggregor was higher than Ragnarok ever could've been.

Kevin was good in battle, as long as it was strictly hand-to-hand combat. For any distance or range, he was useless, but I liked defending him until we could get him close enough to be effective. But against Aggregor, he was nothing. Against someone twice his strength, he was useless.

With my mana dead against Galapegus's species, it was up to Kevin.

Voice catching in my throat as I made a scared attempt to call out to him, I watched him bend down, his hand touching the green faceplate of the Ultimatrix.

And for a mere moment, I wished he were dead.

I didn't want to see him go back to that other life; I couldn't stand seeing him be miserable for himself. It wasn't something I could take any longer. And for that second, I wished he were dead so that neither of us had to suffer through this life-altering pain that seemed to grip us whenever he was in his own suffering whirlwind of nothing but depression and self-hatred.

I watched his eyes close as if he were saying one last prayer to the gods he had stopped believing in a long time ago and a flare of green was shot out into the purple, blue, and black universe of the everlasting debaters.

An agonizing pain seared through me as I cried out, finally finding my words again. And I saw it was too late. He was absorbing the energy. He was turning into a monster. Kevin, my precious, sweet, loving Kevin, was transforming into something he wasn't.

From the start, he had never been a true monster. He had been driven to it. It had been his mistake, his accident. But the lack of control pushed him too far. He had been left hanging off a cliff with only a hold big enough for a finger to keep him there. He had always been unstable, but something had changed since he had joined us. Something severe had gotten into Kevin and let his mindset switch from broken to healed.

My heart shattered into millions of tiny pieces and I saw his monstrous form looming from the glow of green that had broken through the darkness of the Forge of Creation. And I knew I could never put my soul back together again after watching him go through that. The hulking body was worse than the first mutation and wasn't anywhere near the second one's subtly. This one was pure alien, pure insanity that was surely ripping Kevin to shreds on the inside.

Tears slid down my cheeks and I felt my throat closing up as I watched him mercilessly toss Aggregor around like a mere doll. Control was forgotten on the turn of a dime. My pain only increased when I watched him drain the older Osmosian's very life energy, sending him sinking to the ground and into unconsciousness. My head spun, pain shooting through me. I stood, finding my footing weak on the hands of the massive female Celestialsapien. My body was numb as I watched my boyfriend's sanity slowly, painfully dripping away from his old body and the insanity flooding in through the broken dam of his defenses and self-control.

"That's not you talking!" I yelled to him, fighting back the tears that threatened to cascade down my cheeks. I still had an image to uphold, especially with the younger Ben hanging around. I loved Kevin with all those shattered bits of my heart, but I had to hold my head up high for him and for Ben. "Absorbing energy makes Osmosians lose control!"

Maybe he wanted to lose control. He said he did, anyways. That was what scared me to no end. I knew he was tortured beyond belief and that freedom was the way he could just be himself without a limit. Losing control was a sort of liberty for him, like hitting stuff that he was allowed to and letting out all his feelings through a strike or a punch.

He kept saying no one cared about him. But I did. I cared about him. I cared about him enough to sit in the garage with him for hours instead of studying or reading. I cared about him enough to try and help him fight the monster that killed his father. Ben and I cared. We cared more than he could ever understand.

But the younger Ben was right. It was a painful thing to admit, but he was right. Kevin was always feeling sorry for himself. Could he see anything beyond his own pain, beyond his own life? Maybe New York had turned him self-centered, but it hadn't turned him heartless.

The rest of it went by in a painful blur of motion, me just standing on the outside of the glass looking in on my beloved boyfriend as he was helpless in defense against his worst enemy: himself. He wasn't the Kevin I knew and loved anymore. He was threatening to take the entire universe in his own hands. That single shred of humanity kept him from doing it.

But I figured it was that single shred of humanity that made him disappear into the darkness of the Forge of Creation. That was what kept him from destroying us and from absorbing the raw energy of the baby Celestialsapien. It was what had made him flee. He didn't want to face the idea of disappointing us by giving into this craving of raw energy. He had vanished into the blackness of the universe, taking my heart with him.

That shred of humanity that he clung to was the only thing that would keep him from making any more mistakes in that form. Ben may have been right. Kevin may have been crazier than he was before. But I had a good feeling he was a lot more stable. He had a conscience this time. And he had another life to look forward to.


A/N: Kevin seems to be a lot more stable than 11 ever was. He was generally calm and well-maintained. I know this was short, but I couldn't squeeze much out of it. please review.

~Sky