Appearing in "Rocky Grimm Space Ranger Part XII (of XII): To All Things an Ending"
- Tarianna (Death)
- Alicia Masters (Dream)
- Fantastic Four (Only in flashback)
- Llrrllllnnllyyrrl (Only in flashback)
- Battleworld (Destruction)
Synopsis for "Rocky Grimm Space Ranger Part XII (of XII): To All Things an Ending"
Thinking he is back home on Earth, Ben Grimm rushes to the apartment of his girlfriend Alicia Masters with flowers and a box of chocolates. When Alicia answers the door, she is shocked to find that he is no longer the Thing anymore and is horrified by this. She then starts throwing punches at Ben, telling him over and over again that she never loved him. Suddenly Ben wakes up and finds that he is in his Thing form in the middle of a massive arena. He is confronted by his persistent foe the Sorcerer who reveals that he shares the face of Ben Grimm. The Sorcerer explains how this has come to be: How Ben decides to stay on Battleworld after the Secret Wars because he believed that it allowed him to change back and forth between his human and Thing forms. The Sorcerer goes on to explain that the Beyonder created Battleworld so that it would formulate the desires of those upon it as a study on desire, a totally alien concept to the god-like being. Because Ben no longer had to struggle with being either Ben Grimm or the Thing, Battleworld created another Ben Grimm to maintain this struggle, creating Grimm the Sorcerer in the process. Seeking to be the one who survived upon the end of Ben's soul searching, the Sorcerer began plotting against Ben every step of the way. First finding the head of Ultron and setting into motion the events of him having a new body constructed, then creating threats that constantly made Ben choose to transform into the Thing in order to trap him in that form.
With his explanation over, the Sorcerer then tells Ben that only one of them will survive that day -- either Ben Grimm or the Thing -- and vows to slay Ben. With a sword popping out from within his armored sleeve, the Sorcerer makes his attack. While the two men battle for supremacy, Tarianna breaks free from her bonds and is determined to help her beloved. While not far away, Ultron has mobilized an entire army of robots and plans on attacking the Sorcerer's domain. As Ultron and his armies begin decimating Battleworld, Tarianna find the Thing and the Sorcerer. With Ben down and the Sorcerer about to land the killing blow, Tarianna grabs the broken blade of the Sorcerer's sword and impales him in the back. The wound being fatal, the Sorcerer falls down dead and suddenly Battleworld begins to tremble as everything around Ben begins to vanish. Watching Tarianna become weak, Ben struggles to get to her before she fades from existence. Ultron meanwhile watches in horror as his armies and newly constructed body begin to vanish, leaving him a disembodied head once more.
With Tarianna dying in his arms, Ben explains all the struggles he has had of late and his ending relationship with Alicia Masters and not coming to terms with the fact that he was the Thing. Ben suddenly realizes that he always had the ability to change back and forth between the Thing and Ben Grimm, but a mental block prevented him from doing it. He has come to this realization too late because when Tarianna killed Grimm the Sorcerer, she imprisoned Ben in hs Thing form, seemingly forever. With her last words of love, Tarianna suddenly fades from existence as if she was no longer there. Now on a barren world, Ben begins to reflect on everything that happened. Considering that Tarianna was the product of his subconscious mind he realizes that perhaps her killing the Sorcerer was his mind's way of wanting to be the Thing over Ben Grimm. Ben's thoughts are cut short when he comes across Ultron's head. Deciding that it is time to go home, Ben pulls out the device that Reed gave him that will teleport him home. With a final farewell to Battleworld and Tarianna, Ben activates the device. No sooner is Ben gone that Battleworld suddenly and violently self-destructs, leaving nothing behind.
For almost a year, the weird world of the Beyonder has been Ben's prison. Ben finally faces the truth about himself, this world and Tarianna when he pushes ... the Button!
- This story takes place after the events of Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #1-12. In the second issue of that series Ben discovered that he could change back to human form. By the end of the series he believed it was something to do with Battleworld and decided to stay behind. In reality, as Mister Fantastic deduced in Fantastic Four #245, a mental block in Ben's mind associated with his relationship with Alicia Masters has prevented Ben from willingly being able to change back and forth. A fact that Reed keeps secret from Ben until Thing #23.
- Ben's believes that his surroundings were the product of the Beyonder creating Battleworld in Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #1. However his surroundings are actually being shaped by his subconscious mind, as revealed in Thing #22.
- Also discovered in Thing #22, Tarianna is the image of Ben's ideal woman. It's later revealed in Thing #27 that Tarianna's appearance is based off of a female adventurer named Sharon Ventura.
- Ultron's body is rebuilt here, it was destroyed during the events of Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #12, stranding him on Battleworld.
- Ben comments on his drifting relationship with Alicia Masters. The pair have been dating since Fantastic Four #9. After Alicia was tortured by Annihilus in Fantastic Four #251-256. This caused Ben to begin re-evaluating their relationship from Thing #2-10.
- Although Ben believes that he has lost his ability to return to human form forever, this proves to be false as he managed to return to human form (all be it temporarily each time) many times after this story. The next time is in Fantastic Four #326.
- Although Battleworld is seemingly destroyed here, it is rebuilt by the Stranger as seen in Beyond! #1-6.
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