"What's that Jazz?" Asked Danny as he entered the room.
"Hmm? Oh this?" She said as she looked up from the computer. "It's the data I've been collecting on your powers and transformation. I've been trying to understand how they work."
"Actually, yes. It all has to do with how you got your powers in the first place."
"I know how I got them." Said Danny as he leaned over Jazz to steal a handful of her corn chips. "I turned the portal on while I was inside and it messed up my genes and now I'm half alive and half ghost."
"No it didn't affect your genes, ghosts don't have DNA, they're made up of energy fields instead of matter. So is almost everything in the Ghost Zone. And I'm pretty sure you're entirely alive."
"You're able to exist as matter and as a living energy field more or less at the same time. When you 'go ghost' you change some of your body's matter into energy so you become more energy than matter, somehow this makes it easier for you to use your powers."
"How is that possible?"
"I don't know. You break the laws of physics just existing let alone when you change. But it does explain why you do better fighting ghosts when Sam, Tucker, or I are with you. And stop eating my chips!"
"Because you can go get your own chips."
"Not the chips Jazz. Why do I fight better when you're around?"
"Ghosts need energy to exist just like humans do but they don't get it from eating, instead they absorb the ambient energy around them."
"So that's why it feels cold when a ghost is around."
"Exactly Danny. The ghost zone has very high levels of ambient energy, this side of the portal doesn't so ghosts tend to weaken if they stay here to long. But some ghosts, especially the powerful ones, can use the energy produced by human emotions. Most of them use the 'frequency' produced by negative emotions."
"So they feed off of fear and pain." Said Danny looking a little sick.
"Yes, but you're different, you feed on positive emotions. You even get some energy from your own emotions; God only knows how that works. So when you're around people you care about and who care about you, you get stronger. You seem to get the biggest boost from emotions directed at you but you get a small boost anytime you're around people who are happy."
"So my family and friends really are my strength."
"More than that Danny, if you were ever completely isolated from everyone you cared about you would basically starve to death. Or, go insane."
"Isn't that a cheerful thought." Said Danny sarcastically. "Though I guess that kinda explains the evil me. Wait, if it didn't affect my DNA would it, I mean someday if I have a kid?"
"Well it can't be inherited in the normal sense but your powers are a part of you now and I can't say for sure if you could or couldn't pass them on. But I do think either all of your descendents will have your powers or none of them will."
"So I'll need to find a phase proof crib?"
"Very funny Danny." Jazz rolled her eyes, Danny just grinned.
"Actually, the sheer amount of energy your powers use means that even if someone was born with them it would be years before they could use them."
"But I could use mine right away." Said Danny.
"You were 'charged' by the accident that changed you."
"Maybe I should say 'powered up' when you turned on the portal the whole town had a brownout."
"That's, that's a lot of electricity."
"And that's only part of it." Said Jazz. "If I'm reading Mom's notes right, the portal draws power from the ghost zone as well. And there's a massive power surge when it activates although it stabilizes after a few minuets. I don't know how you did it but you absorbed some of the energy you were exposed to, this is what permanently changed you."
"That's, a little disturbing. Do you know why I use positive emotions?"
"I'm not sure. But I think it was because of the first people you saw afterwards."
"Sam and Tucker?"
"Yes, What was their first reaction when you came out of the portal?"
"More like fell out." He muttered." Well they were worried about me. Especially after I fell through Sam's hands when she tried to help me up."
"It looks like they're at least partly responsible for you being the heroic Phantom instead of a second Vlad. You see, the energy in the ghost zone is pretty much neutral but the first emotional energy you were exposed to afterwards was of two people worried about you. Caring about you."
"Hmm, do you think Vlad uses negative emotions?"
"I positive he does. He likes it when people fear him. But Danny?"
"You could 'reset' the frequency of emotions you use. The evil version of you proves that."
"Thanks Jazz, I really needed something else to have nightmares about."
"Sorry Danny, but I think it would take a major shock to do it and I think on some level you would have to want it."
"That doesn't exactly make me feel better."
"Well here's something else to think about, if you could change the frequency you use, so could Vlad."
This story began with me wondering how Lunchbox was possible and became a discussion between Danny and Jazz about the source of his powers and how he could have turned evil.
No, I don't understand how my mind works either.