- "Pleased to meet all you young ones, again."
Chapter 10: Again is the tenth chapter of 5 Years Later.
Danny, Ben (as Buck Wild), and Future Fenton are fighting an army of Vlad’s image clones deep within the Temporal Zone. The constant reactions and attention needed to counter the Vlads starts to diminish Danny’s energy, but Ben warns him that Danny needs to find a way to stay active, as Danny may be the deciding factor in this battle.
To refresh his energy, Danny absorbs one of Vlad’s clones into himself, but the intense, dark energies of Vlad start to overwhelm Danny. His sword changes shape and turns red, along with Danny’s eyes. Danny resists, turning Vlad’s energy into his own, and fires a powerful blasts that destroys all of Vlad’s clones, revealing the real Vlad, floating in the emptiness where his army once stood.
Ben tries to instigate Divinity into joining the battle, questioning why he chooses to watch. Divinity retorts that the Heroes have yet to become a threat to him now that he is continuously becoming more powerful every moment, and his involvement is unnecessary.
Danny releases a powerful Ghost Wail in response to Divinity’s urge for a challenge, but Divinity swiftly counters this attack, projecting the Ghost Wail back at Danny. Danny is quickly protected by Future Fenton’s shield, which temporarily keeps them safe. However, Divinity’s attack breaks through the shield, prompting Ben to save both of them, and retreat to a safe location.
Divinity expresses his disappointment with Danny’s current power level, passively mocking Vlad for struggling to defeat him in their earlier years.
In a flashback, Eon and Vlad discuss how they will pull off Ben’s execution. Eon shuts down Vlad’s idea to go back in time before Ben received the Omnitrix, as many important moments in Ben’s timeline are protected by greater forces. Eon’s plan is to use his deep understanding of the Omnitrix’s blueprints to hack the device and disable the fail-safes, which would allow Vlad to kill Ben without any of Ben’s back-up life support. Eon urges Vlad to kill Ben in his strongest alien form, Alien X, as it is the only way to prove Ben is really dead.
Meanwhile, Gwendolyn, Kevin, Rook, Zim, and GIR converse with Clockwork and Paradox about the nature of their imprisonment. The two explain that Eon has been rewinding time every time he was defeated gaining more knowledge about how to correct his mistakes with each try. One timeline, where Eon became Divinity and evolved to an incredibly powerful state, so Clockwork and Paradox helped Ben and Danny defeat him.
However, since Clockwork, Paradox, and Divinity discharge too much power, all three of them can no longer be in the same place, forcing Clockwork and Paradox to hide out in The Clock Tower to avoid destroying the Multiverse.
They are currently in the first timeline where Eon has asked Vlad for help, which baffles everyone on what this outcome will result in. Clockwork adds on that even if The Heroes leave this tower, another version of them will take their place, as they have yet to find a way to break the loop, and prevent Eon from continuing to reset the timeline upon each of his failures, as every time Eon resets the timeline, the fabric of the multiverse is put more and more at risk.
Gwendolyn suggests using the same rift Divinity used to send them here to collect Ben and Danny and protect them while they devise a way to end the time loop permanently, and use GIR to open the gateway, as a mechanical construct may be immune to the corruptions of the Multiverse.
Back in the Temporal Zone, Ben, now as Portaler, opens a portal to escape Vlad and Divinity, but Danny refuses, stating their best bet is to stand and fight. This evolves into a disagreement between the two, as Danny wishes for Ben to trust his leadership, and Ben starts to doubt his belief in Danny’s power. The argument is interrupted by Future Fenton warning Danny not to feed into his emotions, as his Awakening Stage puts him in a very sensitive state of mind, and he may lose control of himself.
Danny doubts his ability to master his powers, since Future Fenton is technically proof that he fails, while Future Fenton disagrees, saying that Future Fenton traveling back in time gives Danny another chance, since he has more guidance.
Danny convinces Ben to let him resume his position as team leader. Vlad appears and tries to strike Danny with his arm, now transformed into a sword, as Danny counters with his own sword. Future Fenton joins the fight, manifesting a sword as well, engaging in a three-way sword fight. Ben attempts to break the battle by using two wormholes, which are now unstable due to the sensitive area of the Temporal Zone they are in, but Divinity appears in an instant, grabs the wormholes from Ben, and claps them onto his face, creating a ripple that destroys the platform they are on, blasting everyone back.
Divinity catches Ben and Danny, allowing Future Fenton and Vlad to fall, and taunts them both once more to unleash their true powers. Future Fenton flies back up, challenging Divinity to battle, which Divinity shrugs off, refusing to see Future Fenton as a threat.
Ben questions how all of this destruction has anything to do with saving his people, questioning his leadership. Divinity turns this back on Ben, saying Ben’s own leadership is allowing his companions to suffer.
Divinity opens a portal back to Zim’s Earth, where Technus and the Alternative Bens have been entertaining themselves by destroying the half that survived after Divinity split the planet in the previous Chapter. Technus takes this chance to rejoin the battle, fusing himself with the other Alternative Bens to form one large amalgamation.
- Buck Wild and Portaler make their debuts.
- It is revealed that the events of 5 Years Later has happened over 23,000 times in many variations, but this is the first one with Vlad's involvement.
- This prompts The Heroes present to work to change the timeline, where Clockwork passively confirms it may work.
- Danny's Awakening Stage evolves him slightly further, giving him another new costume, and changing his hairline and eyebrows.
- It is also revealed that his Awakening Stage is dependent on his emotions, and the abilities he uses.
- Lula, Crawnch, and GoTro are defeated and badly injured, but kept alive to taunt Ben.
- Technus fuses with the remaining Alternative Ben Tennysons into the large amalgamous monster, Big Ben.
- Danny Fenton (and various Alternative Versions)
- Ben Tennyson (and various Alternative Versions)
- Future Fenton
- Rook Blonko
- Professor Paradox
- Clockwork (Ghost)
- Gwendolyn Tennyson
- Kevin Levin
- Jack Fenton (Flashback)
- Box Ghost (Newspaper)
- Desiree (Newspaper)
- Sam Manson (Flashback and Alternative Version)
- Ember McClain (cameo)
- Eve (cameo)
- Chirp (cameo)
- Phil Gacks (cameo)
- Crawnch (cameo)
- GoTro (cameo)
- Starbeard (First appearance, Flashback)
- Ben 23 (First appearance, Flashback)
- Ben 23,000 (First appearance, Flashback)
- Azmuth (cameo)
- Planet Buster (cameo)
- Buck Wild (debut)
- Cannonbolt (first appearance, cameo)
- Spitter (first appearance, cameo)
- Heatblast (cameo)
- Crashhopper (first appearance, cameo)
- Goop (first appearance, cameo)
- Buzzshock (first appearance, cameo)
- Mentacle (debut, cameo)
- Brainstorm (first appearance, cameo)
- Pesky Dust (cameo)
- Antigravitesla (debut, flashback)
- Alien X (cameo)
- Clockwork (mentioned)
- Way Big (cameo)
- Atomix (cameo)
- Portaler (debut)
- Big Ben (debut)
- Temporal Zone
- Plumber HQ (cameo)
- Zim's Dimension
- The Clock Tower
- Null Void (cameo)
- Bellwood (cameo)
- Fenton Works (cameo)
- Danny mentions having difficulties with creating image clones of himself, a power he has shown to struggle with in the Danny Phantom series.
- The pose Divinity makes during Danny’s opening sequence is similar to a common depiction of Jesus from Christian imagery.
- Antigravitelsa, a transformation only shown in international advertisements for the Ben 10 Franchise, makes an appearance.
- Ben 23, an Alternative Ben from Ben 10: Omniverse, makes a cameo, along with a future version of himself, Ben 23,000. This future was created for 5 Years Later, and is based on the Ben 10,000 that appears in Omniverse.
- The fact that both Danny Phantom and Ben 10 have characters named Clockwork is lamp-shaded in this Chapter; a fact commonly joked about between both fandoms.
- When Paradox is explaining Eon’s many travels through time, references to the Ben 10 episodes Ben Again and Ben 10,000 Returns are shown, along with a panel depicting Ben and Rook from Chapter 1.
- The sword Future Fenton forms is similar to the Big Fat Sword Rex Salazar uses.
- Another one of Danny’s statues is shown during the opening sequence, this one being in front of the Sydney Opera House, located in Australia.
- This is the second chapter in a row to not show Ben using his human form. His human form only appears in flashbacks, the cover art, and the opening sequence.
- The flashback to the Keshawn Desert was drawn in the Chapter 8 Art Style, revealing that the Art Shift between Chapters 8 and 9 was a canon event. It is currently unknown if the characters are aware of their slight change in appearance.
- Many Easter Eggs from other franchises appear in the Temporal Zone, such as Minecraft, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse, and Back to the Future.
- Flashbacks to Lodestar destroying Zim’s ship in Chapter 6 and Planet Buster’s transformation from Chapter 8 are shown during Danny’s argument about Ben’s poor decisions.
- Danny is now able to fight with his sword telekinetically, and no longer needs to physically hold on to his sword to attack. His sword is now also able to block or perform attacks independent from Danny.