A/N: This hit me. Mostly because I liked the title. So here goes another little either two-shot or three-shot of mine. If I can come up with something for Gwen, it'll be a three-shot. For now, it's just the guys.

Disclaimer: I don't own Ben 10. Ben's POV.


Cold sweat coated my skin as I bolted upright in bed, feeling a nightmare clinging onto my mind, not wanting me to forget the fear and pain it wrought. My heart was pounding a thousand times a second, racing at the speed of light within my chest; I could feel it beating against my ribcage, almost threatening to break one of the bones. Or at least it felt like it.

I tried to focus on the reality that was slowly building up around me again. I was seeing shadows dance across my room, the spotlight that was created by the silver moon chasing them off the stage of my room. I could see my computer taking form in the darkness as my eyes adjusted and I could make out the faint shapes of my other pieces of furniture. I could see my dresser and my little lamp and my tv. My closet doors were just black panels across the wall without a proper light on.

My head was throbbing slightly and I was trying to slow my breathing, in and out. In and out. My heart still thundered and my brain was beginning to build a dull ache in the back of my skull.

That was a bad nightmare. I'd had it bad before, but that was easily one of the worst I'd had in the longest time. Just so vivid and so twisted. The way the images rolled through his mind made it all feel like a long 3D movie that wouldn't end fast enough. And when it did end, it ended with a bang. And not the kind most people would want.

I ran one hand through my hair and kicked the blankets off my body. I was sweating and I felt like I was going to be sick at any moment. It was so horrible. So so horrible... I tried to wipe the perspiration off my sticky skin. It had to be one of the worst nightmares I'd had in my entire life.

I'd had almost the same one a thousand times before. It wasn't anything new. The only thing that made this one worse was that it was darker. More haunted. It was like something was screaming out to me and I was just missing it. And I'd had the same dream topic since I was younger, but this one was raw. It was all-consuming. It had grabbed me and sucked my hand like a vengeful hand.

The way the skin ripped away to reveal a disgusting figure beneath it...

Kevin's monster form had plagued my nightmares again. I hadn't had a bad dream about him since I was about thirteen. Sometimes he randomly came into my head when I slept, but it was never the guy I called my best friend. It was always the beast, the creature, the monster I had met years ago. Never recent things. Always distant. Always far off memories that had scarred me forever.

It was hard to survive through the nightmares where his skin peeled away and the wings sliced right out of his back. It always came out of nowhere. He could be a child, innocent and young with those brown eyes and he would turn on me without hesitation. Wings would slice out of his back, only cutting through more skin and making me shudder. The way his body fell off like Gwen's did when she went full Anodite...

The whole ordeal was horrifying. It's like watching the strongest man in the world go down in a single blow. Or watching the greatest surfer fall victim to a wave. Someone you can think so highly of falling to such lows...

I put in a little more effort to regulate my breathing. My heart was still pumping harder than I thought physically possible, but I couldn't get it to settle down from the unrest. I put a hand on my chest, feeling my ribcage rising and falling as I drank in air through my dry mouth.

Kevin was only a victim and I knew that, but I knew how he was capable of control. I watched him spare Gwen more than once and I was glad he was able to keep some of his human emotions in that mangled body.

This nightmare had him pinning me against a wall, crystal hand threatening to smash my chest in. He was only a kid in that mutated form and I was giving him the benefit of the doubt on that. But when he formed the crystals of his Diamondhead arm into a sharp, fine blade and pressed the weapon against my throat, I lost a little faith in him.

Usually, my nightmares were chases and name calling and the occasional cliff for me to get pushed off of, but this one had him slitting throat and laughing as the crimson blood ran down my neck, staining my skin scarlet. He was laughing. Demonically. He laughed as I struggled and tried to make an escape, but he had me by the waist in one hand and the other was nearly finished in severing my head from the rest of my body. And he just kept laughing and laughing like my death was the funniest thing in the world.

I felt like my heart was going to break a rib or something until I managed to calm my breathing down to at least normal levels. I had almost been hyperventilating before. And I wiped the beads of sweat from my forehead as I looked at the moonlight washed floor of my bedroom and I couldn't help but be scared that maybe that insanity would again jump into our team and maybe we'd lose Kevin for good this time.

He was my best friend, the only brother I could or would ever ask for. I didn't want to lose him. And so I made a pact with myself that I'd do anything to stop him from having to go through that again just to save the universe. He didn't deserve that with every bad guy that came up. I wouldn't let him fall victim to himself. Not again. Nevermore.

A/N: Short, but I like this part. Next will be up shortly.