Hello! For those of you who have me on alert, you can all assume that Valerie was indeed the one to save him, which is true as you'll see. One person actually got that too!

As it is, the new movie is coming closer and closer! I'm excited, what about you guys? What I'm thinking is that I can at least get this chapter up today, one up Thursday, and then one up Friday and leave the final chapter for Saturday or Sunday. I would have been pretty amazed to see what the review count would have been had I not rushed it, considering this story has done better than I could have ever dreamed.

Thanks to my reviewers!

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Chapter Twelve

Valerie's Promise

Valerie Gray paced the length of the room, chewing on her thumbnail nervously. She couldn't keep still, staring out the windows and watching as police officers stood, guarding the entrance to the Fenton home.

Her whole body tingled with rising anticipation. The power to get out of there was at her touch, dangling at her fingertips, so easy to get a hold of. Yet she was waiting, trying to get things to make sense in her own head. She didn't have to stay…But she felt like she had to. Waiting…very impatiently.

To her surprise, she didn't have to wait much longer. There was a soft, pained noise behind her. She turned around to see Danny, lying raggedly in bed, slowly open his eyes, staring around as if dazed. She didn't move, not wanting to startle him.

He finally focused, blinking several times. She didn't even have to move for him to realize soon after she was there.

"Valerie?" he called out, sounding surprised.

"Hey Danny," she replied quietly, biting her lip.

He stayed silent for a moment, trying to think of something to say, his head pounding heavily. "What happened?"

She sighed. "I heard about…you getting captured…" She laughed shortly. "An anonymous email from "The Techno Geek." But I think I got it…"

"Tucker sent you a message?" he asked.

"Yeah…I read it about five minutes before I left. Something wasn't right…I knew it wasn't," she said. "So, I flew over to the station and saw the three of them fighting. I talked to Jazz and she said that you'd gone after your overshadowed parents. When I got there…it was just to see the truck careen nearly out of control and you smashed into the side of a boulder…hard too…"

He groaned, knowing at least why he was in pain. He guessed the rest of the story. "You…you saved me…"

"I wasn't going to let you fall to your death if that's what you mean," she said. "As much as I try to play the tough girl…I'm not heartless Danny."

She stared at him and he averted his eyes, feeling guilty. "I'm sorry I didn't tell you," he said, more to the wall than her.

"Why didn't you? I would have been angry, that's for sure, but I wouldn't…I wouldn't have hunted you…or hurt you…" The tone to her voice sent a deep feeling of regret in his mind.

"I didn't know…I didn't want to believe that you would, but you were so angry and I know that really…even though I hadn't meant to, I'd hurt you and…I knew if I told you, you'd never forgive me," he admitted.

"Like I said," she told him after a moment. "I try to play tough girl. Deep down inside…I hated ghosts…Any kind…The fact was… I knew some of them were dangerous. But you…" She turned to him. "Danny Phantom…You were different. Within me, I knew you wouldn't purposely hurt me…But I just let my anger take over me and that was it."

"I wanted to tell you…I couldn't," he said.

"Me too," she said. "I thought for a split second, "Hey, his parents are ghost hunters, he won't even care if I'm one too, right?" She laughed shortly, no humor. "But then I saw how dangerous some of the ghosts I fought were…and the ones your family fought and…realized…this probably wasn't the life you wanted. My job required me to always be away, always be in some sort of danger. I didn't want you to be involved. But you were…"

"Valerie I--"

"Just a second…" She cut him off by saying. He fell silent, waiting for her to continue. "When I found out that night…who you really were, I was angry and harsh. I spent days staying that way, dependent on only myself. I hated you so much…for lying to me, for pretending all this time…And then I realized how I'd been doing the same thing to you. When Tucker emailed me, I was glad he did. And before I knew it, we were here."

She paused for a moment. "The truth is…the truth is, I should have guessed. I shouldn't have been so eager to get revenge when neither of us were being honest with each other. And…for you not telling me…it's kind of obvious to understand why." He didn't know what to say. "But from now on…Danny, I don't care if you have these ghost powers…I know Danny Fenton…so I guess that means I really know Danny Phantom…I just hope you can forgive me."

"Of course," he said. "I was never angry at you…at first maybe, but then I…I really started to like you and it got easier. I felt stupid for keeping the secret from you."

"Well, I guess we can only do one thing then," she said with a smile, sitting down at the edge of his bed. "Make a promise never to lie, steal, cheat, or do anything else to ruin this friendship. Ghost, humans, or in between..."

She held out her hand and grinning, he took it. "Promise." She tugged his arm forwards and wrapped her arms around him in a tight hug.

Valerie stood on her feet. "Come on ghost kid," she said. "I told your parents I'd tell them when you were up."

"How are they?" he asked, sliding his feet off the bed and standing up. A wave of dizziness came over him and he swayed, holding a hand to his head.

"Maybe you should lie back down," she suggested, noticing.

"No, I need to talk to them," he insisted.

"You're not going to get far without my help," she said, walking over to him and putting his arm around her shoulders. "Got it?"

"Yeah," he said as they started to walk clumsily out of the room.

"I think this is a bit easier than when you're…temporarily paralyzed," she said randomly, a grin spreading across her face.

He burst into laughter. "Yeah…I'd have to agree."

"Danny!" As soon as they approached the stairwell, his mother gave out a squeal of shock and relief, rushing up the stairs, Jack following close behind. She automatically began doing a physical check up. "Sweetheart, how do you feel? How's your head?"

"I'm fine," he said. "A little woozy, but fine…"

Valerie stepped back, smiling as Jazz, Tucker, Sam, and her father, Damon Gray, gathered around the edge of the stairs, all looking glad to see them both.

Maddie hugged her son tightly. "You must be starving…"

"Actually, kind of," he teased, smiling.

"Come on," she said. "The whole gang's here, we might as well have a feast."

"What are we celebrating?" he wondered.

"Everything we have son!" Jack said excitedly.

"Family, friends, and love," Maddie said. "Come on, come on, let's find something to eat! I can whip something up fast."

She and Jack walked into the kitchen, Damon following behind, giving his daughter a quick hug as she and Danny walked the rest of the stairs.

He sighed, amazed once again. "This…is…unbelievable."

"What?" Jazz asked.

"Everything…If I didn't know any better, I'd say for once it's a happy ending," he said.

"We have happy endings," Sam said. "Just weird ones."

"What did you expect?" Jazz asked.

"I don't know…but definitely not this…" He took a deep breath. "Thanks guys…really."

"Aww, Danny's getting sentimental," Tucker joked. They all laughed and the two boys gave each other a high five.

"Looks like everything's getting back to normal then," Jazz said. "As normal as we can get it."

"This was one heck of an adventure," Sam said.

"For you…for me it was a living nightmare," Danny argued, making her laugh.

"I'm hungry," Tucker said.

"Let's get something to eat," Danny agreed.

They'd barely taken a step towards the kitchen when there was a loud gasp from inside the room and then something glass shattered.

Confused, Danny rushed ahead past Jazz, who ran at his heels right behind him. They stepped into the kitchen, where a large glass dish had broken, tiny shards everywhere. "Mom, dad? What's wrong?" Danny and Jazz asked in unison.

Maddie, her hand over her mouth, was staring straight at the tv hanging from the cabinets like the other two adults were.

He followed their gaze to see the news. "—conclude the city is in uproar. Without vigilant watch, ghosts terrorize the city while escaped prisoners loot Amity Park's finest buildings. Police are calling in for more help and several have received injuries."

"Ghost hunters are all over the city," Jack said. His tiny eyes flickered back towards Danny. "More ghosts than I've ever seen before."

"Jack, we have to do something," Maddie insisted.

"Let me help," Danny suddenly offered.

"Danny, no. There's no way I'm going to let you go again. There's ghost hunters out there and I just got you back…" He could see his mother was trying hard not to cry.

"Mom, I have an idea…If I go out there, I might attract their attention, right? Both ghosts and ghost hunters…They'll follow me…"

"We can trick them," Sam said, catching on. "Sneak up on them from behind. We can catch the ghosts."

"How?" Damon wondered, his eyes wide.

"All of us working together," Jazz said. "Mom, you're the best ghost hunters. Sam, Tucker, and I…we know how to work some of the weapons. Danny can be the distraction with his powers…and Valerie's a ghost hunter as well!"

"This is too dangerous," Maddie said.

"But they're right Maddie," Jack argued. "It might be the only thing we can do."

His wife looked determined to put up a fight but fell silent. "I don't want any of you to get hurt."

"If we work together…we won't have to worry about that," Danny assured her.

She swallowed with difficulty and then nodded. "Alright…"

Tucker sighed. "So much for a happy ending…"

You all didn't think that was the end, did you at first? Hee hee, never! This story's got fifteen chapters total. Twelve down, three more to go. Let's see if Valerie says anything to Danny in the new movie, ha ha.

Next update will be Friday…with a nice little cliffhanger that could or could not spell doom for all of Amity Park…Unless….they've got enough time.

Please R&R! Here's your sneak peek!

Chapter Thirteen: No Lack Of Heroes

"The fact is, we'll lure him right to us," Ember growled, a smirk on her face.

"And how do you suppose we'll do that?" Skulker demanded, getting agitated. "There are ghost hunters everywhere. They probably have him already."

"We don't know that. I say we go looking for him," Technus said.

"Looking for who?"

All three ghosts jumped, startled at the unexpected noise and turned around. Danny rose up from the floor, turning tangible again and crouched on the ground. "Not looking for me, are you?"

Lateraina Wolf