So the hero has spent some time trapped in another world (or another time, another universe, or even just another country). Initially, they just wanted to get home, but soon enough, they found himselves wrapped up in the other world's affairs. Then, all at once, they're returned home against their will. But there's a problem. The villain lives. The hero's friends in the other world are still fighting for their lives. That other world still needs saving. Nothing has been resolved. If their "other world" was another time (specifically the past), the hero may even find out that their friends all died and that the villain won. However, their original world doesn't appear to be in any danger (at least initially). The hero could stay there and live a normal life, forgetting about what happened in the other world altogether. What is their reaction to this? "Send me back!"
Most of the time, the hero will eventually find a way back to the other world to resolve things, but there are occasional subversions to this.
Compare Can't Stay Normal
and So What Do We Do Now?
Occasionally overlaps with Save Both Worlds
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Anime & Manga
- In Digimon Adventure, Taichi, having just defeated the villain of the arc, manages to return to his home world. Unfortunately, all his friends are still trapped in the Digital World. After receiving a garbled message indicating that they may be in trouble, Taichi finds a way to return to the Digital World in order to rescue them.
- In Dual Parallel Trouble Adventure, Kazuki is at one point blasted back to his world mid-battle. Upon realizing what happened, he asks the scientist who sent him there in the first place, Ken Sanada, to send him back.
- A very brief example occurs in Mahou Sensei Negima! when Zazi sends Negi's group back to the Old World (Earth) after they had been trapped in the Magical World for a few months under the condition that they stop interfering with Fate's plan and let the villains go about as they please. The whole group demands that they be returned to the Magical World so that they can set things right. The worst part: because of Chao, they know that one possible future doesn't turn out very well, and Zazi seems convinced that their actions are going to lead to the future she came from. Although part of the reason they were so quick to demand being returned is because they suspect the trip to be an illusion of some sort.
- The first season of Magic Knight Rayearth. The heroines have saved magical land Cephiro from the machinations of Zagato, and defeated Princess Emeraude, who had brought them in to kill her so that she could be free and happy with Zagato rather than focusing all her attention on maintaining the peace of the realm. They then are released back to Tokyo, but soon realise that Cephiro is now leaderless and in turmoil, so will themselves to return.
- Averted in the beginning. When Kagome first returns to her own time, she briefly considers attempting to go back to feudal Japan to help search for the shards of the Shikon no Tama. In the end, however, she decides to just pretend it was all a dream and ignore it. And then Inu-Yasha shows up and drags her back to the past anyway.
- Played straight in one of the movies. Inu-Yasha throws Kagome down the well to return her to the present, then blocks the well with a boulder so that she can't get back. She immediately tries to get back, but since the well is blocked in the past, it doesn't work. Once things get so bad in the past that they start to affect the present, Kagome destroys the boulder with a magic arrow, enabling her to travel back and forth once again.
- In Flushed Away, after Roddy finally returns to his home, upon realizing that the Toad plans to destroy the city of rodents in the sewer, he decides to go back to both save the city, and to stay.
- Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson, Holger Carlsen is suddenly switched out from the climactic battle against evil back to our Earth, where he appears in the middle of a firefight with Nazis. It's suggested that the battles are connected, and that good triumphed back in the alternate reality, but Holger would like to know for sure.
- Near the end of Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere, the hero gets back "home", to upper London. He chooses to return to the adventure.
- In Doctor Who episode "The Parting of the Ways", Rose is trapped in the TARDIS by the Doctor and sent back to the twenty-first century, because "Emergency Program 1 means [The Doctor is] facing an enemy that should never be allowed to get their hands on [the TARDIS]." However, Rose won't take that for a good reason. She knows that the Doctor is going to die if he fights the Daleks by himself, so she gets Jackie and Micky to help her crack the TARDIS so she can get back to the 2001st century — and it works.
- Life On Mars ends this way. In the middle of a massive police sting, Sam finally wakes up from his coma - but he finds life in 2006 so numbing that he ends up throwing himself off the top of the police HQ just to he can get back to 1973 and save his friends.
- In Teen Titans, Cyborg at one point becomes trapped in the distant past. While in the past, he befriends the people of a barbarian tribe, who have been fighting off invading monsters. Then, during the final battle to defend the tribe and destroy the monsters once and for all, the other Titans manage to use magic to forcibly retrieve him from the past. His words as he arrives? "Send me back!" Unusual in that Cyborg does not actually return to the past, as (a) he has no way to get there, and (b) he finds out from a history book that the tribes won without him anyway.
- Star Ocean: The Second Story: Claude accidentally lands on "undeveloped planet" Expel and is stranded there. Though he sends out a distress signal, he later forgets about it... until his father's ship stumbles across it and tracks him down, teleporting him away from his friends inside the Disc One Final Dungeon. Naturally, Claude doesn't take it well.
- Right at the end of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai, after escaping Hinamizawa to report the betrayal of Takano (the telephone lines had been cut within the village and there weren't cell phones back when the story takes place, so they had to actually leave the village to report this), Tomitake and Akasaka decide to return to Hinamizawa to continue fighting despite the deployment of Banken (an elite combat force that will hopefully save the day) and the danger to themselves.
- At the end of Machinima/Redvsblue S9, Epsilon-Church says this after being pulled out of the Epsilon unit. He had figured out the secret that let him escape the cycle, but then was dragged into the fight again. This is also a terribly sad moment: Church is terribly abused by Tex, especially in her flailing failure to accomplish anything, and only achieves inner peace when he gets rid of her, by forgetting her.