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Ben 10: Ben's Achilles Heel

by Dorain

Disclaimer: This story is a work of fiction. It portrays the humane restraint and tickling of a minor. If this bothers you or is illegal in your area, then close this file now. The characters in this story are the property of their owners, and are used in a non-profit manner. While this story takes place during the regular storyline of the Ben 10 show, it is not, in any way, canon. Dorain © 2008

Fourarms pinned the younger Tetramand down easily, chuckling as he did so. He didn't know why this juvenile four-armed alien had come to earth, but he had been causing mischief among the animals in Yosemite National Park. It was pure chance that the Rustbucket had come across the six-foot alien youngster chasing animals and wrestling with young bears. Ben had quickly transformed into his older Tetramand alien form and easily subdued the extraterrestrial boy. Even now, the little Tetramand was complaining in his native language. Ben didn't understand the language, but he understood the attitude quite well; he didn't like being forced into compliance by people bigger and more powerful than him either. But since it was him in charge this time, he was enjoying himself greatly.

“What's the matter, little guy? Having problems?” he teased. Just to add insult to injury, he reached down with one pair of arms and gathered up the smaller alien's four hands in two of his own, and then used his free pair of hands to start poking and squeezing the youngster's sides. The Tetramand boy erupted into wild laughter, with words in his own language interspersed between his laughter; at first imperious, but then more desperate as Ben kept up the cruel tactile teasing.

“Ben, that's enough!” Gwen retorted angrily. “You beat him, now find out why he's here,” she cried out.

“We're just having a few laughs, party-pooper,” Ben shot back, continuing to tickle his foe, teasing him for his helplessness.

But, as it always seemed to happen, a distressing tone started ringing. The Omnitrix started flashing red, as the powering-down tone rang time and again. With a flash of red light, Fourarms vanished, and ten-year-old Ben was left trying to hold down the significantly larger alien.

“Um, hi,” Ben said sheepishly, giving an embarrassed smile to the larger alien.

A grin crossed the Tetramand's face, as it quickly and easily reversed the pin, holding Ben down to the ground. With the human boy's arms held over his head by one pair of its arms, it could easily devote its other pair to retaliatory tickling of Ben's sides, underarms and stomach. Ben screamed and burst into laughter. He was exceedingly ticklish; something that he had successfully hidden from his cousin all summer, but he wasn't even able to put up even the most token of resistance when the alien started kneading his sides.

“Gwe-he-he-he-hennnn! Help! Hahahaha!!” he cried helplessly as the alien pressed his advantage.

Gwen just smirked at him. “Serves you right, Ben Tennyson! You were mean, and now you're getting a taste of your own medicine!”

She noticed, with amusement, just how easily the juvenile Tetramand was drawing laughter and squeals out of her cousin, and she was enjoying the harmless suffering Ben was being subjected to. She did nothing to help Ben as the alien boy tickled him to incoherency. It was only the delayed appearance of Grandpa that prompted her to finally step in. With a quick incantation, she used her recently-discovered magical powers to send out an energy beam to grab the Tetramand and lift him up off of her exhausted cousin.

After Grandpa managed to utilize a translator to find out the Tetramand boy had been shipwrecked here, and was only playing as he waiting for his parents to pick him up, the old man finally went over to the tickle-devastated Ben to help him up.

“You okay, Ben?” Grandpa asked.

“Yeah, yeah. He just got the better of me after the Omnitrix timed out,” he commiserated. “Still, I had him under control,” Ben bragged.

“Oh, yeah. You were really in control, there,” Gwen retorted as she watched the Tetramand boy run off to retrieve his escape module.

“I was totally in control!” Ben shot back through his clenched teeth, staring at his cousin angrily, as if daring her to contradict his edited version of the facts.

“Yeah, yeah, you were in control,” Gwen replied as a wicked idea came to her.

Ben looked utterly bewildered that his normally annoying cousin was willing to back-up his lie, but he grinned proudly to his grandfather, little suspecting the plans his smarter cousin was cooking up in her mind.

After the alien boy was picked up by his parents, Ben, Gwen and Grandpa walked back to the old RV.

“Whew, Ben!” Grandpa stated as he lifted his affectionate arm off of the boy and plugged his nose. “You stink of sweat! You're taking a shower after we get back to the Rustbucket!”

Ben started to protest, but Grandpa just held up his hand. “We have to live with you too, Benjamin Tennyson, and we're not going to live with you the way you smell right now.”

Ben grumped, but didn't argue anymore. He recognized the tone of voice that his grandfather used when he wasn't going to be argued with any further.

Half an hour later, Ben stepped out of the Rustbucket dressed in just a pair of shorts, vigorously drying his head with a towel. He pulled the towel away, exposing wildly dishevelled hair, and looked around. Gwen sat in a lawn chair, typing on her laptop.

“Where's grandpa?” he asked his cousin.

“He saw an interesting bird, and said it inspired him to go for a bird watching hike,” Gwen said without looking up. “He said he wouldn't be more than a couple of hours.”

Ben sighed and went over to the nearby picnic table to sit down. Other than a small public washroom, and this picnic table, there was hardly any sign of civilization anywhere around them. The ten-year-old gave a heavy, long-suffering, audible sigh and laid back.

“I'm bored!” he lamented. “Bored, bored, bored, bored, bored!”

Gwen looked up, exasperated. She spotted Ben, laying on his back on the table, one leg crossed over his knee, his bare foot twitching idly in the air. The events of that morning came back to her, and the thoughts that occurred to her at that time. She decided it was time to get back at her obnoxious cousin, and maybe give him a bit of an attitude adjustment at the same time. She closed her computer and stood up, setting the laptop in the chair before she started idly wandering over towards Ben.

“I know what we can do…,” she drawled, smiling knowingly.

“What?” Ben snapped with irritation, not looking at her. “Paint our nails and pick poesies?”

Dondal Jenerikis!” she cried, gesturing towards the boy.

Beams of purple energy shot out of her hands, arcing towards Ben's wrists and ankles, forming loops of energy around them. Gwen gestured again, and the purple energy bands pulled the boy's wrists towards one end of the table, and his ankles towards the other.

“What the heck!?” Ben cried as he was pulled into a spread-eagle position on top of the picnic table.

Gwen grinned and clapped her hands at the fact that she was able to pull off that new spell. She walked over towards her struggling cousin, and stood on the bench, looming over him.

“Gwen! Let me go! This isn't funny!”

“It isn't?” Gwen asked facetiously. “Then why are you laughing?”

“What?” Ben said, confused. “I'm not laugh… AAAHHH!!” he screamed as the girl bent over and started driving her fingers into his bare sides.

“Wha-ha-ha-ha-hat are you doing? Aaaahahahaha!! No, stop!! Heeheeheehee! Quit it!” he sputtered, quickly heading for full laughter as she continued to poke and knead his sides.

“Why, I'm putting you in control, Ben,” she giggled. “Just like you were 'in control' of that alien kid this morning,” she said, starting to wiggle her fingers around his flat stomach, making the boy super hero laugh wildly.

“No! Stop! Hahahaha!! Quit it!!” he demanded, trying to sound angry and intimidating, but sounding more like a tittering little girl. “Stop it!!” he howled, struggling futilely with the powerful magical bonds.

“What's the matter, Ben? A little ticklish?” she taunted.

Ben gritted his teeth, and tried his hardest to stop laughing. He snorted and puffed, and his eyes started watering. The last thing he would ever do is admit to his cousin that he was ticklish. Only Ben's mom knew how horribly ticklish her son was. Every once in a while, she would get into a mood, and start poking at Ben's sides, making him protest angrily, but that just encouraged her more. She would pursue Ben, continuing to poke at him until his angry exclamations became giggling squeals. Finally, Ben would be too tired to resist anymore, and his mom would corner him. Then the real tickling would start. Ben would howl and squeal, and laugh until he was red in the face.

Gwen was going full out from the start, though, and there was no way Ben could back away from these tickling attacks. In far too short a time, his laughter burst out again in a shrill squeal that modulated to wild, juvenile laughter.

Gwen was enjoying tickling her annoying cousin a lot more than she thought she would. His sides and stomach were exceedingly sensitive, and his underarms were so sensitive that she thought for a minute that she might be killing him from the loud, desperate laughter she got when she spidered her fingers in them. She looked down at his bare feet, noting with interest how cutely his little toes were wiggling. She stopped tickling Ben, giving the boy a breather, as she moved down to the end of the table.

Ordinarily, she would never think of touching her cousin's feet. He never changed his socks, and he walked through unmentionable things throughout the summer, but he had just showered. His feet were clean, and pink, and wrinkled cutely with round little toes that she had to admit were kind of adorable. She realized that she would likely never get a chance like this again.

Ben had started getting his breath back, as the ghost-tickling of his upper torso was slowly fading. He was just about to start protesting and demanding that his cousin free him, when he was hit with a shock. A feathery touch on the sole of his left foot shot up his leg, and into his nervous system, hitting him like a bomb. Unbidden, a shriek of laughter erupted from him as he tried desperately to pull his leg away.

Gwen noticed Ben's spasmodic action and grinned evilly. If that was the reaction to just a little wiggle of her fingers on his sole, what she did next should be like fireworks. Standing between his feet, she faced towards his head, that wicked smile still on her face as she stared at him. A look of horror crossed her smaller cousin's face as he realized what she was about to do.

“No… no, No!!” Ben begged, but Gwen was feeling her power now, and she was loving it.

Ben exploded into the wildest, most dynamic laughter Gwen had ever heard before. As her fingers whirled over both his soles at the same time, Ben was laughing fit to bust a lung, and yet, his laughter continued to get more intense as she continued to torture his poor, little feet. His screams and bellows of laughter echoed through the tops of the trees, scaring flights of birds from their branches. Delighted by the response, Gwen continued, moving her wiggling fingers up to his soft toes. Ben's laughter jumped up in pitch when she did that, hitting high notes that even she doubted she could reach as he screamed his ticklish protests to the sky.

Gwen was in a trance of ecstasy, delighting in the deep and lasting suffering that she was inflicting on the insufferably smug and thoughtless Ben, revelling in the fact that since it wasn't harming him, she could continue it without fear of censure, and relishing in the fact that due to the stamina Ben had built from withstanding all the transformations into alien forms, his wild and desperate laughter was showing no sign of waning. Unfortunately, she was shocked out of this reverie by a familiar voice yelling at her.

“Gwen! What's going on?” Grandpa shouted as he ran up to her from the treeline.

Gwen reluctantly stopped and looked at her elder, feeling some embarrassment and apprehension that he might admonish her for her torture of her cousin.

“What's going on?” Grandpa repeated as he came up to the table, breathless from running. “Someone screaming scared away all the birds!” He looked down at the picnic table, taking in the somewhat bewildering spectacle. “Was that Ben screaming?”

“We-we were just playing, Grandpa,” Gwen giggle, nervously.

Ben was panting with exertion, frowning angrily at his cousin.

“She was tickling me, Grandpa!” he accused, snorting in anger.

“You're ticklish, Ben?” the old man asked, getting a quirky smile on his face. He had tickled Ben when he was a toddler, but occasions had never presented themselves since then.

“What? No! No way! I'm not ticklish! That's for babies!” the boy sputtered, his flushed cheeks remaining red with a blush of embarrassment.

Gwen realized that this was a way to keep herself out of trouble. Grandpa seemed interested in the fact that Ben was ticklish, so she took steps to prove to him that the youngster was still vulnerable. She diddled her fingers in Ben's arches, eliciting a ticklish squeal from the helpless boy.

“You are ticklish!” Grandpa declared triumphantly, chuckling at the thought that his headstrong little grandson had been reduced to the squealing and mewling he had heard, just due to tickling.

“Care to join me,” Gwen asked, grinning at Grandpa.

“No! Don't you dare!” Ben warned them, but it was an idle threat.

Grandpa dug his big fingers into Ben's sides, making the boy arch his back as he screamed in laughter. The old man continued to press his fingers deeply into the lad's sides, eliciting deep tickles throughout his torso, and just as his back met the surface of the picnic table again, Gwen started up tickling his incredibly ticklish bare feet again.

Ben was in a horrible predicament; even worse than when the Omnitrix failed to reset fast enough when he needed it. His companions were taking advantage of a secret weakness that he thought only his mother knew about, and worst of all, his feet — somewhere he had never been tickled before — turned out to be so ticklish that all he could do while they were being tortured was thrash about and scream his protests to the heavens.

Gwen and Grandpa tormented Ben for a long time, switching positions a couple of time as they teased the helpless boy. Grandpa was having a great time, he realized with a touch of shame. He realized that he shouldn't be having this much fun at his grandchild's expense, but he also thought about how headstrong and thoughtless Ben was. The old man convinced himself a lesson in humility would suit young Ben quite well.

Finally, Gwen's binding spell expired, and the purple bonds snapped loose with a series of tiny bangs. Ben twitched his limbs outward now that he was free, but was too exhausted to do anything else. Instead, he just curled up on the top of the table, wishing that the severe ghost-tickles would stop and allow him to stop the silly, tittering giggling he was still doing.

Gwen and Grandpa sat down at the table, chuckling at each other.

“Not ticklish, eh, Ben?” Grandpa teased.

Ben got up enough energy to give his elder a brief raspberry in response.

Later, Ben stepped out of the Rustbucket, this time dressed fully. He gave a sour stare to his cousin, who was watching Grandpa cook something unpalatable on a collapsible grill. She grinned back and wiggled her fingers at Ben, making the boy involuntarily take a half-step back. That reaction made the girl burst out laughing.

“I'll get even with you someday, dweeb!” he called.

He got engaged in a mutual tongue-sticking-out with Gwen when he suddenly felt fingers digging into his sides through his shirt. With a yelp, he danced away, frowning disapprovingly at his grandfather. The man had snuck up behind him and squeezed him ticklishly.

“Yessir, I'm going to have a lot of fun from now on, now that I know you're ticklish, sport!” he declared amiably as he looked down at the boy, chuckling a bit.

Ben shuddered as he moved over to sit down on a log, realizing that it was going to be a very long summer.


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