Sparring Session
Ben x Gwen
Story Start
Ben and Gwen found themselves out in the forest as they prepared for a training session. Without Kevin to fall back on the two were beginning to realize how large of a power vacuum that his absence left and that it needed to be filled. How much power they needed to gain and how much smarter they needed to fight as well considering he was the only one without a time restraint or a pool of magic while large was not endless. They also realized that they needed to be a little bit more ruthless themselves.

''We need to be stronger Gwen! I need to make the most of my aliens and you have to start using some of your stronger spells. I know you fear hurting others or possibly killing them, but we can't afford to hold back anymore if we can help it.''

As if she was sensing Ben's distress Gwen tried to bring her cousin's mind from such grim thoughts. ''We'll make it Ben! Remember when we were ten and dealt with psychos and super powered beings during the Summer all those years ago?''

''That's just the thing we're not kids anymore. The stakes are higher and I don't want to lose you Gwen. I don't want my mistakes getting you hurt or worse. I can't let my fears get the best. I don't know what I would do without you;'ve always been one of my main reasons for fighting.'

It took Gwen some time to pick up on the hidden meaning of Ben's words. Could he had been referring to their first encounter with Zombozo? It was one of those times when Ben never went into detail of what happened when he took on the villain alone. Gwen could vaguely remember that incident all those years ago, but she remembered being tired. One of the few times in her life Ben had been so concerned about her and where he didn't try to play off how he was feeling by insulting her. It made her wonder what else Ben had blamed himself for. So Gwen made the resolve to get Ben to allow her to shoulder some of that burden.

So after finally setting up their schedule the duo arrived in a calm and serene location where they first met the Unitrix, Eunice and where they fought Sunder. In fact it was that battle with Sunder that made them realize that unless they got in gear they may not make it out there next fight alive. Sunder was contracted to retrieve Eunice, before that it was Kevin who Ben theorized had moments of lucidity as since Kevin absorbed the power of the aliens from the Ultimatrix then he must have gained Bellicus and Serena from X since he didn't have the reality warping power and that prevented him from going all out and before Kevin was Aggregor. Nearly straight out half a dozen losses and it took Kevin's super powered evil side in the need to win not to mention that encounter with Eon as well. They couldn't rely on that luck anymore; they couldn't rely on their opponents being as careless.

''Alright Ben I'm ready!'' Gwen said as she stood opposite of him, in her blue shirt, black skirt, and stockings.

''In that? Not really practical,'' Ben remarked as he activated the Ultimatrix.

''Transferra Vestis.'' Gwen said as her clothing was enveloped in a violet aura before changing into a sleeveless dark blue T-shirt and Black, form fitting Black cargo pants that wasn't too tight on her. ''Alright mister savior of the Universe your move.'' she playfully teased him as a smirk formed on Ben's face.

''Alright Gwennie you asked for it.'' he said as he noticed the scowl that formed on Gwen's face; he knew that Gwen absolutely hated that nickname. Activating the alien in choice he erupted in a fiery blaze as his body morphed into a mixture of magma and molten rock as his head lit ablaze. When the green light died down there standing on the dirt was Heatblast. The very first alien he had transformed into.''Let's rock!'' he said as he propelled himself forward like a rocket.

Gwen's hands lit with magenta mana as she fired several mana bursts at Ben who merely maneuvered to the side with ease so she concentrated and fired a single powerful beam which resulted in Ben firing a stream of fire from his mouth as he stopped himself, their attacks meeting in the middle before they caused the other to dissipate. Forming some fire disks Ben launched them at Gwen who tossed up a shield resulting in them connecting and fizzling out.

''Saphirius Expectorium perpetus!'' Gwen chanted as her eyes glowed, summoning a whirlwind Ben was propelled into the air.

''Time for a change!'' Ben murmured to himself as in a flash he had transformed into Stinkfly. ''It feels good to be back!''

''This is going to be tricky!''
Gwen thought to herself. Shortly after Kevin's incarceration they were sought out by Paradox about a major disturbance and that resulted in meeting Ben's future-self; a Ben 10,000 different from the one they met as children. Gwen could practically feel how fighting Eon and finding out he was a corrupted version of Ben was weighing on her cousin's consciousness. One after another; incident after incident was occurring and it was changing Ben, but with Gwen with him every step of the way to prevent him from falling into a funk like previously.

Stinkfly excreted high-pressure streams of liquids from the pollen ducts of its eye stalks and mouth. Putting her martial arts training to good use Gwen rolled out of the way as she began firing several bursts of Mana to which Ben maneuvered out of the way with ease. His experience with aerial combat was going to make it difficult for Gwen to get a good shot on him. So fleeing behind some trees for some Cover Gwen put her plan into action. ''Camaflet Vaporis!'' A huge amount of steam began to fill the area obscuring Ben's vision.

''You're going to have to do better then that Gwen!'' Ben said as he changed again, this time into Terraspin. Retracting in his shell he began to use his flat hands like a hand to use powerful bursts of wind to blow away the steam. Out of the dissipating steam a magenta a fire blast erupted from the mist and collided with Ben from behind, blind siding him and interrupting his process to blow away the steam. Falling down to the ground and using his shield to cushion most of the impact Ben transformed into XLR8 as he used his speed to rapidly form a circle as the mist was funneled away and cleared Gwen's cover.

''Tempestus!'' Gwen chanted as water erupted from a nearby river and began chasing after Ben. Picking up speed Ben maneuvered around an assortment of trees until he was sure he was out of Gwen's range before transforming into Swampfire, giving up most of his speed for some strength and elemental abilities. As Ben finally closed in on Gwen he found himself dodging several energy bolts, some of them tearing clean through his body only for it to regenerate. Just as he was within striking distance Gwen chanted another spell.

''Eratico!'' Ben was soon wrapped up in and entrapped in a large sphere of Mana.

''I got to admit Gwen I'm impressed! You must have been training hard the past week to be able to pull off this many high level spells, but the fun has just gotten started.'' Ben remarked as he began launching one hit after another at the barrier as small cracks began to form only for Gwen to reinforce the barrier with two more layers. Though that didn't last for long as Ben exited the barrier using Big Chill's ability to go intangible. He then exhaled some freezing vapor at Gwen who quickly threw up another mana shield to blocked it and retaliated with the Galeus Disruptus spell to manipulate the air and make it harder for Ben to fly and use his abilities accurately followed by the Interdamotor Elaborator, a concentrated blast of pure heat to put Ben on the defensive.

''It's time to take this to the next level!'' Ben remarked as he activated the Ultimate function and went Ultimate Big Chill. Using the ice flames he used his breath to consumed the heat out of the spell causing it to disperse. ''Come on Gwen! Give it all you got! I know you don't want to hurt me, but we can't afford to go easy on each other!''

No matter how reluctant she was Gwen knew Ben was right. Even if they were able to save Kevin in the end it was her lack of resolve, her unwillingness to go all out against Ben the reason why she lost when she fought to stop him from going after Kevin and she couldn't afford to hold back anymore. ''Sinnyu Invisibis!'' with a cry several boulders were illuminated with Mana as they were launched at Ultimate Big Chill who just maneuvered around them with ease.

''What is Gwen up too? She knows I can dodge them with ease.'' Though Ben was no longer left wondering as Gwen began firing off a series of spells.

''Patefacio Intactus! Arava Eelartes Gallametroy!'' a silver beam of energy erupted from Gwen's fingertips and struck Ben head on much to his shock. He found himself being forced into going tangible when the sky began to darken and thunder rumbled. Several bolts of lighting struck down and a vortex began to pull Ultimate Big Chill in, but with a bit of effort Ultimate Big Chill was able to pull away from the pull of the Vortex. As the winds died down Ultimate Big Chill floated to the ground and began gliding towards Gwen.

''User Multiply!''
One Gwen then became three and they fired a combined mana blast as Big Chill sending him flying back. Then forming Mana whips the Gwen's f whipped their hands using the weapons to ensnare Ultimate Big Chill's limbs and to prevent him from moving.

''Amazing Gwen...really amazing. I see you learned some new spells.'' the bound Necrofriggian remarked.

''I've been going through Charmcaster's personal library to find something we can use to help her.'' after giving it much thought on how to feel the whole in their team Gwen thought about Charmcaster. While there was still a bit of a bad blood considering the past Gwen knew that Charmcaster wasn't some remorseless monster and there was a reason behind her actions. That maybe it was possible to put the animosity between them behind. ''Looks like I win this round Ben. I've see all of your aliens in action Ben so I know what to expect.''

A smirk formed on Ultimate Big Chill's face. He would only be able to stay transformed for another minute or two so he had to make the most of it. ''You're not the only one to pick up a few new tricks Gwen!'' Ben said as a bright flash of green enveloped the alien. The Gwens jumped back as a massive orb of electrical energy crackled around the creature. It was a green twilight creature of some kind with a dark humanoid form. ''Meet Thunder Cracker! A new breed of Protoss Archon.'' Ben said as he used his newly revealed Alien's power to send the copy Gwen's flying, exploding into a burst of Mana. He then began firing powerful Psionic blasts.

''Vortesses Nebulai!'' Gwen cast as a glowing force field formed and reflected the black back at Thunder Cracker who just erected a powerful plasma shield. Gwen then retreated, creating some platforms as she moved across the river, firing burst and burst of mana blast to keep Thunder Cracker from getting too close as he fired some psionic blasts that went over her head. ''Silicus Milez Sositatio!'' Gwen chanted as she found herself growing tired as she summoned Rock creatures to block his path.

The rock creatures charged forward, their powerful fist landing solid blows against Thunder Cracker as his shield which was worn down from the solid blows as Thunder Cracker waved his hand, the violet eyes of some of them went Green as they turned on each other. And with that Gwen went with one of her finishing spells. ''Tempestus Impaetus!''a lighting bolt came down and struck the creature causing his shield to erupt from the powerful blast causing him to drop to his knees. Feeling herself almost drained Gwen traveled back to the land as she had to dismiss the rock creatures or be completely drained.

''45 seconds left. I have to end this!'' Ben thought as he used one last transformation. This time Ben took on an appearance reminiscent to his human form with white slick back hair, a atypical black suit and glowing red eyes, the Ultimatrix symbol appearing on his cuff links. Faster then Gwen could react she was tackled to the ground, pinned under this new human link alien as Ben looked down at her with a triumph grin. ''I win!'' he spoke, his voice with an odd cold yet seductive edge.

''You sure about that?'' Gwen asked as Ben rose an eyebrow in confusion as he looked down to see Gwen holding her hand against his gut radiating a yellow energy sphere. ''How about a draw?''

hastily agreed to before the Ultimatrix timed out and Ben assumed his human form. ''I really need to do something about this time limit.'' he remarked with a sigh.

''Uum Ben...aren't you going to let me up?'' Gwen asked as she felt her face heat up.

A smirk formed on Ben's face as he mulled over it. ''Nah! I'm comfortable this way!'' he said as he leaned over and pressed his lips against Gwen, tasting her strawberry lip-gloss and enjoying the softness of her lips.

''You would...'' she said with a grin of her own as she cupped his cheek. ''Ben...don't ever change!'' she said as Ben's hand went up to caress her hand.

''You don't have to worry about that Gwen. As long as I have you by my side to knock some sense into me I won't.'' he said as Gwen wrapped her arms around his neck and brought him down for another kiss. ''I love you Ben.'' Gwen whispered into his ear before claiming his lips. Now more then ever Ben was the one she wanted and needed. And that she was safe with him. After a few minutes of passionate kissing they got up and dusted off their clothing as they made there way back to Ben's car.

The drive felt too short in her opinion as the moment she arrived home and watched Ben drive away, waving all the while she was anxious for him to get home so she could call him. She couldn't help but feel silly, acting more like a girl with a crush then anything; in fact she was so consumed with her thoughts she was caught off guard when Verdona popped up at her window.

''What is it that you want to talk about Grandma Verdona?'' She knew her grandmother wasn't one to make house calls.

''It's about your relationship with Ben,'' she spoke as Gwen suddenly tensed; a look of nervousness flashed in her mind.

''What are you talking about? Ben and I are fine.'' she lied, trying to play it off when an all knowing smile formed across Verdona's face.

''There's no use lying to me child. I know all about you and Ben and unlike humans we Anodites are more open to people's choices in relationships.'' she explained as Gwen let out a breath or relief. ''To be honest the reason I came here was for two things. To explain to you more about your Anodite heritage and to break up you and that Kevin boy if need be.'' she informed her grand daughter, alarming her.

''Kevin and I aren't seeing each other anymore, but regardless why would you do that? I thought you liked Kevin?'' Gwen couldn't help but wonder what was with her grandmother's sudden 180 change in opinion concerning her ex.

''I thought Kevin was a nice boy that would be different from his usual kin, being a half-breed and all, but I heard about the incident from Max. I heard about how he tried to drain you,'' Verdona remarked as her face went grim. ''Anodites and Osmosians simply don't mix Gwendolyn. We are beings of pure energy and if his race drained too much energy their negative traits is multiplied by ten-fold along with their loss in sanity. It's nothing against Kevin personally, but there are other reasons why our two races could never mix. Like for instance what would happen if a child inherited both of the parent traits? They could be driven into a permanent state of insanity and become a danger to others and themselves. Also when it comes to mating habits we Anodties can be a little...energetic? Playful?'' Verdona tried to find the right word much to her grand daughter's growing discomfort. ''What would you call it when your partner let's loose a bunch of energy blasts that shocks...''

''Okay Grandma I get the point.'' the now pale red-head remarked. As Gwen took in Verdona's words she never thought about the implications of what her grandmother was telling her. Sex? Children? She had never even considered that sort of stuff. In fact thinking back she hadn't considered a lot of things with her relationship with Kevin and it made her reevaluate things. Like how she found Kevin boyfriend material despite the fact he held her hostage and threatened her life when they were children or the fact that they didn't have a strong foundation or friendship when they got together. They just simply got together and that led to so many heartaches, arguments, and trouble they could have avoided if they simply had gotten to know each other. ''What is this attuning you were talking about?'' she decided to change the subject as right now she was too tired to want to dread about the past.

''Well dear think of it as a short of Anodite puberty.'' Verdona begin explaining as Gwen suppressed the urge to groan. This was going to be a long night.

Chapter End
If I get enough reviews requesting for a second sequel I'll write one.