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DOWNTOWN SCEPT CITY - PRESENT DAY

(Criminal #1): Haha, robbing dis bank was too easy!

(Criminal #2): I know, right? It's like dem cops ain't even tryin!

The two criminals get into their car.

(Criminal #2): You remember to place dose bombs?

(Criminal #1): Every single one of em.

(Criminal #2): Good, now let's blow dis place to smithereens.

One of the criminals pulls out a remote and presses the single button on it. As the two of them drive away, the bank explodes.

(Criminal #1): Next stop, the boss.

(Criminal #2): Mr. 0's gonna be real impressed when he sees all the cash we got, eh Carter?

(Carter): You know it, Johnny.

The two of them continue to drive away, until the car suddenly stops.

(Johnny): Why did you stop, man?

(Carter): I didn't!

The car is lifted into the air.

(Johnny): CARTER!! I want my mommy.

An eye suddenly stares at them.

(Skyscraper): Seriously? A bank heist at 3 AM? Can't a girl get some sleep?

(Carter): Yo man, get out the plasma rifles we stole.

(Johnny): Sure thing.

Johnny pulls out 2 plasma rifles and hands one to Carter.

(Carter): Say goodnight, ya freak!

The two of them shoot at Skyscraper's arm.

(Skyscraper): That tickles, no, seriously! It does! Stop!

She starts laughing.

(Carter): She ain't dead!

(Johnny): Wanna bail?

(Carter): With pleasure.

The two of them open the car doors, with Carter holding a sack over his shoulder. Then, they jump out of the car.

(Skyscraper): Okay, time t- oh come on.

She pulls down her other hand and grabs the two criminals.

(Skyscraper): You aren't getting away that easily.

(Carter): Mr. 0's gonna kill us..

TENNYSON RESIDENCE - 15 MINUTES LATER

Nicole walks through the door and sits on the couch.

(Ken): Where were you?

(Nicole): Stopping crime..

(Ken): At 3 AM?

(Nicole): Yup, criminals can be that stupid.

(Ken): And I see you got injured..

(Nicole): Wha- oh..how did..

(Ken): Your arm, it's bleeding.

(Nicole): Thank you, Captain Obvious.

Ken quickly opens an emergency first-aid kit and bandages Nicole's arm.

(Nicole): Thanks. Any luck with the investigation?

(Ken): No, for the past week, we haven't been able to find any leads, or evidence that Jason was transported to another dimension.

(Nicole): Have you tried Dimensions 23, 408, or 9?

(Ken): Yeah. Dimension 23 has no Jason, same with 408. 9 is at war, so I couldn't get hold of anyone there.

(Nicole): Oh..

(Ken): So, back to square one, guessing. Using knowledge of Jason himself, that is.

(Nicole): He um..smart..funny..

(Ken): Not attractive terms, out of the ordinary, strange.

(Nicole): Technology-related powers?

(Ken): Technol- THAT'S IT!

(Nicole): What's it?

(Ken): The Digital Realm! It's composed of coding, and since Jason has tech-based powers, maybe as a fail safe, he was sent there!

(Nicole): So..Jason's just coding now? What if he's erased, or a virus infects him?

(Ken): Heh..virus. Funny, because if a human is in the Digital Realm, they start to-

(Nicole): Start to what, Ken?

(Ken): Decompose, until they merge with everything else, being simple coding. It's impossible to restore them after that. Takes about, 2 days in Earth time.

(Nicole): We need to go there!

(Ken): Woah, woah, didn't you here me? If a human goes to the Digital Realm, it's like signing their life away!

(Nicole): I have to save Jason, it's my fault he was sent there, Ken. And it's my duty to get him back.

Ken sighs and walks over to a wall, pressing a green button.

(Ken): Fine, but you'll have to wear this.

A robotic suit rises up from the floor, in a display case.

(Nicole): Shiny.

(Ken): This suit will protect you from being infected with any viruses, as long as you don't let the atmosphere from the Digital Realm get into the suit.

(Nicole): Got it.

Ken opens the display case and hands Nicole the suit, and she puts it on.

(Nicole): Bit big on me.

(Ken): Blue button, arm.

Nicole presses the blue button, causing the suit to adjust to her size.

(Nicole): Can I keep it?

(Ken): No.

(Nicole): Fiiine. But how do I get to the Digital Realm again?

(Ken): Dimensional travel isn't as easy as it was 20 years ago. You need to first enter a dimensional gate, which is basically a space with portals to different dimensions, and in order to get to the dimension of your choosing, you have to defeat a sentry. Once you beat the sentry, dimensional travel for you is just like it was 20 years ago.

(Nicole): And how do I enter a dimensional gate?

(Ken): Open a portal.

Nicole creates a portal.

(Ken): The entrance can be difficult, just to warn you. Those sentries..man they don't hold back.

(Nicole): Wait, they were a challenge for you, an experienced fighter and Omnitrix user?

(Ken): Yeah.

(Nicole): I'd prepare a funeral for me, if I were yo- WAIT. Why can't you just come along and help me?!

Nicole crosses her arms and glares at Ken.

(Ken, nervously): Well..um..you see-

(Nicole): You. Portal. Now.

She grabs Ken's arm and pulls him into the portal.

(Ken): Ow..

(Nicole): Where's the sentry?

A gigantic stone statue appears in front of them.

(Ken): That would be him..but..it looks like someone already beat him.

The statue comes to life and knocks Ken away, and creates a force field, preventing him from getting in.

(Sentry): Welcome, traveler. In order to pass, you must defeat me in combat.

(Nicole): Um..do I have to fight you? Can't we just sit down and talk, like civilized beings?

(Sentry): Combat is required! Now, let us begin, by choosing our weapon.

The sentry creates a battle axe and swings it around.

(Sentry): What weapon will you choose?

(Nicole): Are transformations allowed?

(Sentry): Transformations? I assume you are acquainted with Azmuth the First Thinker, or Benjamin Kirby Tennyson, correct?

(Nicole): I know Ben's son Ken..does that count for anything?

(Sentry): Ah, Kenneth Maxwell Tennyson, I remember him. Transformations are allowed, as long as you do not transform into a Celestialsapien, or Chronian.

(Nicole): Alright, I don't even think I have those species unlocked.

Nicole activates the Delta-X and selects an alien.

(Nicole): But what happens if I lose? Do you decapitate me or something?

(Sentry): No, this combat is similar to what you earthlings call "fencing". When the opponent is pinned and has no choice but to surrender, then the other is victorious. If you lose, you will not be able to challenge me in combat again, for another Earth year. That is, of course, what happened with Kenneth Maxwell Tennyson. His second attempt at defeating me in combat will arrive in another year.

Nicole glares at Ken on the other side of the force field.

(Ken): I tried to tell you, but you didn't listen.

(Nicole): Alright, I've heard what happens if I lose. What if I win, huh?

(Sentry): If you are victorious in this combat session, you will be awarded with the permission to travel between various dimensions freely. However, this qualifies for you, and you alone. So Kenneth Maxwell Te-

(Ken, interrupting): It's Ken!

(Sentry): Very well. So "Ken", would not be able to travel with you. He would instead have to wait another Earth year to challenge me for a second time. If you win, I will make sure to explain all the details to you. If you lose, I will send you back to where you came from. Which reminds me..

The sentry creates a portal and Ken flies into it. The portal closes, and the sentry sighs.

(Sentry): Now that all the details you will need for the moment have been stated, let us proceed with the combat.

Nicole nods, and transforms into the selected alien.

(Sentry): A Polymorph. Interesting choice.

(Slime): You'd be surprised, I've had some practice with this one.

(Sentry): Some will not be good enough.

The sentry charges at Slime, swinging his battle axe. He slashes at her arm, but it doesn't come off.

(Slime, avoiding attacks): I thought you said this was like fencing!

(Sentry): There are differences between the Earth version, and this.

The sentry continues to swing his battle axe at Slime, but she jumps up and grabs his shoulder.

(Sentry, in pain): Arg! You're..burning..my-

He interrupts himself and manages to throw Slime off of his shoulder and onto the ground.

(Slime): Polymorphs have acidic properties, you know.

The sentry sighs in pain and throws his battle axe at Slime's anti-gravity projector, knocking it away from her body, and causing her to fall to the ground, in a puddle.

(Sentry): And now, I claim victory in this ba-

Nicole switches to Hothead somehow and surrounds the sentry in an inferno.

(Hothead): I have a mental link with the Delta-X, you can't just expect me to lay there in a puddle and allow you to win.

(Sentry): Impressive. Tennyson had a vocal link with his Omnitrix.

He puts out the flames around him and walks towards Hothead, and raises his battle axe.

(Sentry): But even that won't grant you victory.

Nicole switches to TemperatureMoth and freezes the sentry.

(TemperatureMoth): You talk too much.

The sentry breaks free from the ice, and drops his battle axe.

(Sentry): I..am weak. I now claim you as victor in this battle. Congratulations.

(TemperatureMoth, timing out): Sweet.

(Sentry): Now that you are the victor, I can further explain the details to you.

He deactivates the force field and walks to an area in front of 8 portals.

(Sentry): Come.

Nicole follows him.

(Sentry): Which portal do you wish to take?

(Nicole): Could you tell me where each portal goes?

(Sentry): The first portal will take you back home. The second portal will take you to the 23rd Dimension. The third portal will take you to the 408th Dimension. The fourth portal will take you to the Digital Realm. The fifth portal will take you to the Null Void. The sixth portal will take you to the 9th Dimension. The seventh portal will take you to the Nightmare Realm. The eighth portal will take you to the 40th Dimension. Choose wisely.

(Nicole): I'll choose the fourth portal.

(Sentry): Very well.

All of the portals besides the fourth one, disappear.

(Sentry): I wish you a safe journey.

Nicole nods, and enters the portal. When she opens her eyes, she's standing on a single platform, surrounded by multiple streams of data.

(Nicole): This place doesn't seem that bad..I hope.

She takes one step, and is shot at by something.

(Nicole): What was that?!

Nicole turns around, but the portal slowly closes, and vanishes.

(Nicole): Nononono...I'm stuck here?!?

All of a sudden, Nicole is standing in a dark void, surrounded by several glass-like images.

(Voice): Turn to your right, and you will see your future.

Nicole turns to her right and sees an image. Suddenly, the image comes to life, showing Albedo taking the Delta-X, and killing Nicole, then destroying most of Earth's landscape.

(Nicole): No..no..NO! I won't accept that I failed! This isn't right! This isn't how it's supposed to be!!

She drops to her knees and cries.

(Voice): It is. And it's all because you wanted to save a boy that's already dead. Your journey was in vain, and in your absence, Albedo grew stronger, and slayed most of your allies, leaving you outnumbered, scared, and weak. This is a warning to you, child. Turn back now, and you can save your planet.

(Nicole, in tears): No. I got this far, and I'm not turning back just because some voice from out of nowhere told me to! This is my life, and I'm making my own decisions!

(Voice): You show courage and bravery, but ignorance and anger as well. These traits will be your downfall.

(Nicole): No, you're wrong. That future is a lie. A trick. That future showed what would have happened if I gave in to you! Show me my real future, and I mean it. No lies, no deceiving. I want the truth.

(Voice): I'm afraid that IS the truth, girl.

TO BE CONTINUED

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