WoM- Christmas fic! Hope this gets you people in the holiday mood! As usual, all rights to the Genius Mr. Hartman for the characters, yadda yadda yadda…
Vlad: I insist you stay.
Jack: Well... I don't know. We do have that really cool RV…
Jazz: (Cough) Let's stay here. (End cough)
Christmas. A time of childhood memories, family gatherings, lovers cuddling in the cold and all around good will and cheer.
"Bah!" Vlad scowled, entering his newly rebuilt Plasmius Portal at a brisk pace. If there was one time of year he hated, it was Christmas. As long as he could remember, he hated this time of year. It didn't help that Jack had invited him to some get together he was having at the Fenton house, either.
This Christmas season, instead of sulking alone at home and brooding about his past, he decided to get a little work done. He knew the ghosts would all be partying and getting drunk on eggnog in the Ghost Zone, (So to speak, as ghosts technically CAN'T get drunk. Another thing he cursed Jack for; Ruining his social life AND not even giving him the simple pleasure of drowning his misery in alcohol…) so security around some of the more interesting treasures in the alternate dimension would be lax.
Vlad ignored the laugher coming from Christmas parties through nearly every door in the Ghost Zone (Apparently, even Ember had a pretty big gathering today,) as he kept his eyes trained on the path in front of him.
He'd been doing some reading and stumbled upon an old ghostly legend of the Shroud of Invincibility, which would protect him from even the most powerful of ghosts and ghost-hunting weaponry. Vlad smirked. He'd like to see young Daniel fight his way around THAT one.
The big thing was, the castle where the Shroud resided only appeared in the Ghost Zone on the Night of Christmas Eve. Meaning if he didn't get it now, he'd have to wait another year, something that was inexcusable with how powerful Danny Phantom was becoming. Already he'd earned a fear and respect for the Ghostly community it'd taken Vlad five years to achieve, and he measured the boys rapid growth every time they fought, startled with how quickly the boy was learning on his own.
Vlad wouldn't tell anybody how fond he'd grown of the boy. It was more then that he was Maddie's son, the child that should've been his, but he was also the only one who knew the pain of balancing two fronts. One as a ghost, and the other human. Only young Daniel shared the fear he knew too well, the fear of others finding out what you were, and the repercussions that came with it.
Still, if the boy continued to oppose Vlad, he would eventually have to be disposed of, a thought Vlad loathed. With as much potential and strength as Daniel had, it would be a waste to destroy it…
Pushing these thoughts to the back of his mind Vlad continued on his way. He doubted Daniel's ideals and fantasies of Heroism would last that long, anyways. All that was fueling them was the boy's naïve innocence, which would fade much faster the longer he lived his half-lives. And Vlad was a patient man when the prize was so large.
The billionaire grinned as his target came into view. A large, ominous looking castle, almost buried in snow. The doorknobs were brass and shaped like lions heads and the doors themselves were large, wooden things, that looked old and terribly heavy.
Still, Vlad got them open with little effort thanks to the super strength he'd received from his transformation. Once the doors were opened, he looked inside the castle to see a long hall dimly lit by floating green torches. On the walls on either side of the hall was portrait after portrait of grumpy looking people, lining the way as far as Vlad could see.
Before Vlad could step (Well, float if you wanted to get literate) into the castle, a loud commotion was heard behind him. He didn't have time to wonder about this, though, as two blurs shot past him at alarming speeds, heading into the depths of the fortress. His heart dropped when he realized the second of the two blurs was all-too familiar to him.
"She said no?" Sam repeated, looking a little surprised.
"Yeah," Danny shook his head and frowned thoughtfully, "She said she made other plans already." Danny sighed slightly, a stream of blue breath emitting from his mouth that had much less to do with his powers and more around the fact that it was currently 30 below.
"Plans on Christmas?" Tucker scoffed, "What's she gonna do? I mean, he Dad already told us his family's basically all gone and his wife's family doesn't like him or Valerie…"
"Actually, I think she's planning on ghost hunting," Danny answered.
"On Christmas Day," Sam scoffed, "Talk about obsessed…"
"Yeah," Tucker grinned, "I smell a Scrooge in the making!"
"Lay off, guys," Danny defended the ghost hunter, "Just because Valerie's a little more headstrong then most people doesn't make her a Scrooge."
"Still, what are we gonna do with the presents we bought her?" Tucker asked.
"Give it to her when we get back from Break, I guess." Danny replied, shrugging. "I'm sure she won't mind if they're a little late."
Tucker and Sam didn't say anything else as they followed their friend into his house, smiling when they noticed the Fentonworks sign was still dolled up in enough flashing colorful lights to blind anyone brave enough to chance a glance. It was the same every year, as Christmas had always been Jack's favorite Holiday, and he always went all out for it.
This year, though, the three friends and their families were doing something a little different. Instead of attempting to survive three separate parties, the Fentons, Mansons and Foleys all agreed to have one big party at the Fentons house. Tucker older brother was even coming in for the holidays. The Greys were supposed to come, too, but Daemon said that was only if Valerie wanted to go, which she didn't.
"We're home!" Danny called out as he entered his house.
"Hey kids!" Maddie called from the kitchen over Jack's loud singing which could be heard clearly from the downstairs despite the fact that he was in the attic looking for some ancient decoration or another. She and Mrs. Foley stuck their heads out to see them, "Glad you've made it back! Did you get them?"
"Yeah," Danny said, grinning when he noticed both of them were smeared in flour and sprinkles, and looked like they were having a blast. He glanced around then handed his mom a shopping bag. Giggling, she took it and dived back into the kitchen as fast as she could.
"Man, Danny," Sam said, amused, "When it comes to Christmas, your parents turn into kids."
"Yeah," Danny laughed as they entered the living room, where a great big Christmas tree had been set up. Jazz was putting the finishing touches to the mantle piece, and didn't look up when they came in. "Wanna know what the worst part is, though?"
"What?" Sam asked, raising an eyebrow at the halfa. Danny grinned and held up one hand, still freezing from their trek in the snow.
"It's contagious," And with that, Danny put said freezing had against his sister's unprotected neck, earning a loud noise between a yelp and a gasp.
"DANNY!" Jazz yelled, wheeling around to face her brother. Danny laughed playfully and darted up the stairs, his sister on his heels with the promise of; "Oooh, you better run! When I get my hands on you- Hey!"
Tucker and Sam shared amused glances at the exchange between the Fenton siblings, of which now they could only hear random thumping noises betweens gasped laugher and even more random shouts.
Meanwhile, upstairs Danny and Jazz were left panting after their sibling sprawl, the only true casualty being Danny's usually fairly clean room.
"You are so gonna turn into Dad about this whole Christmas thing when you're older," Jazz told him soundly.
"And you aren't?" Danny challenged, "Face it, Jazz, this it way too fun to just give up."
"True," Jazz sighed in a mournful sort of way, obviously pained by the face that she could've give up being a Fenton entirely after all. Then she grinned mischievously at her little brother, "So, Danny, you gonna get Sam under the mistletoe this year?" Danny's blush at that was bright enough to light up a block and a half.
"Last year was an accident and you know it!" He said loudly, sinking deeper into his bed as if willing himself to disappear.
"And accident I still have photographic proof happened," Jazz's grin widened as her brother really did disappear this time, momentarily losing control over his powers.
"Leave me alone!" He groaned in a woe-is-me sort of way. "Ja-azz!" The elder Fenton sibling laughed.
If faded, though when her brother shivered, a stream of breath emitting from his mouth. This one both sibling knew had nothing to do with the December chill.
"Cover for me?" Danny pleaded, a little bummed he had to deal with ghosts on Christmas Day.
"You know it," Jazz said with a smile that was both encouraging and sympathetic. Danny grinned at her, then stood.
"Alright, where is he?" Youngblood asked, looking around the empty lab. His cowboy outfit was replaced with a solider one, and he was ready for action.
"It's Target not sighted," his parrot (now a skeletal guard dog) corrected dryly. "And it's Christmas Eve, do you honestly think the boy would be waiting to fight you on a holiday? What is that ghastly noise?" the parrot shuttered slightly as Jack's loud singing (Deck the Halls) penetrated even the walls of the lab.
"Whatever," Youngblood said, "And I know he's not expecting me, that why I came now! It's not like I have anything better to do, since I wasn't invited to any parties, and this way, I have the surprise advantage!"
Both Youngblood and his parrot yelped as they were thrown against the wall from Danny Phantom's attack.
"Don't you guys have anywhere better to be?" Danny asked, "I've gotta party to get ready for you know."
"Code Dead, Code Dead!" Youngblood said, turning his hook into a ghostly machine gun.
"Code Red," Danny and Parrot corrected as one.
"WHATEVER!" Youngblood yelled as he started to shoot. Danny dodged the blasts easily, then came up from behind the younger ghost to blast him which he was off guard.
"Great, now we've taken damage to the rear!" Youngblood snapped.
"Tell me about it." Parrot mumbled.
"Can't you just give it a break, kid?" Danny asked, "I've got places I need to be, and I know the Ghost Zone's having like a million Christmas parties."
"Yeah? So what?" Youngblood challenged, "I've got better things to do then waste my time with those losers!" Danny pause midair.
"Didn't get invited to any parties, huh?" He said sympathetically.
"Aw, who asked you!" Youngblood demanded, turning his hook into another gun. Danny went intangible to avoid the spray of bullets then turned tangible again as soon as it was over.
"You know," The parrot said conversationally, "This might be a little harder then you thought…" Backing up slightly, Youngblood knocked into the counter, almost knocking a present off a shelve which he caught just in time.
"Hey!" Danny said, stiffening when he saw the gift, "Put that down! That's my Christmas present to Jazz!" He's hidden it in the lab because it was one of the places you were lest likely to find Jazz going into willingly. She had no problem barging into his room, after all.
"Really?" Youngblood said, grinning evilly. Then, before Danny could stop him, he dived back into the Fenton Ghost Portal. "Catch me if you can!" He called out, laughing.
"You little brat!" Danny yelled, diving after the preadolescent ghost.
"Faster, Faster!" Parrot urged, keeping tabs on the distance between them and Danny. "He's gaining!"
"I'm going as fast as I can!" Youngblood countered. Danny chased them past door after door, and ghost after ghost until Youngblood spotted a castle he hadn't seen before, "There! That's the perfect place to hide, he'll never find us!"
"Lead the way, Commander," Parrot said, following Youngblood into the cryptic snow covered castle. They paid no heed to the ghost they peeled past as they entered, and neither did Danny, too intent on getting his present back to even notice his surroundings in the slightest.
Youngblood continued through the maze of hallways, in a desperate attempt to gain some distance from the halfa. All it got him, though was terribly lost and nearly killed (Or whatever a ghost could be, anyways) by a bunch of weird booby traps.
"We have company," The Parrot warned his companion, noticing the ghost from the door was hot on their trail as well.
"Who cares?" Youngblood asked, "It's the Ghost boy I'm worried about! He catches us and we're VOWs!"
"That's POWs," Parrot corrected with a sighed, "Prisoners of WAAAAAAAAAAAAR!" The last word came out as a yelp that combined with Youngblood's own startled yell as Danny, who had apparently gotten impatient with chasing them around the castle, had shot the two of them down with a well aimed ecto-blast.
They went crashing through a wall, and Youngblood barely had time to register that he and quite a bit of debris had landed on the three ghosts on the other side of the wall before Danny and the other ghost who had been following them flew into the room.
"Now gimme back Jazz's gift!" Danny yelled, warning clear in his tone as his fists glowed green.
"Well, you certainly don't lack ambition, Daniel," The newcomer said to Danny in amusement. Danny turned to face him, his eyes widening.
"Though your observational skills leave much to be desired," Vlad Plasmius added dryly. He grinned, though, when he caught sight of the billowing, shimmering shroud on the other side of the room, "Though I must thank you for handling all those obstacles for me," he said as he flew towards it. "Because of your short-sighted determination, I now have the Shroud of Invincibility!" Just before he could touch the Shroud, though, another voice rang out, this one familiar to only one of theghosts present.
Danny blinked in shock as he found himself in Clockwork's tower. Youngblood, Parrot and Vlad were there as well, even more confused then he was.
"Hey!" Youngblood said, glaring at Vlad once he realized they were not longer in the castle, "Thanks a lot, old man! That tablecloth thing was booby trapped!" Vlad rolled his eyes.
"It was a Shroud, not a tablecloth, fool!" He countered.
"And that's not what brought us here," Danny added, "Clockwork did," Vlad's eyes widened at the name, which he'd come across several times in his studies.
He knew little about the ghost, other then that he was the master of time and one of the oldest and most powerful ghosts in the Ghost Zone. More powerful even then the mighty Pariah Dark. He was far more passive, though, and very mysterious. The number of ghosts or humans who'd ever met him face to face could be counted on one hand.
"Who?" Youngblood asked, unimpressed.
"Me," A voice behind them said, making Vlad, Youngblood and Parrot jump. Danny, on the other hand, just turned and gave the ghost a relaxed grin.
"What is the meaning of this?" Vlad demanded, "What reason do you have for bringing us here?"
"Quite simple, actually," Clockwork said, morphing from an old man to a child, "Your little bout in Christmas Castle caused us quite a bit problem."
"Problem?" Youngblood repeated, "What problem?" Clockwork motioned to his portal, which showed the three ghosts Danny and Youngblood had apparently managed to knock unconscious.
"You've incapacitated the Ghosts of Past, Present and Future," He said grimly. Danny blinked.
"Wait!" He said, his eyes going wide, "You mean like in A Christmas Carol? The three ghosts that visited Scrooge?"
"That's right," Clockwork sighed, "Ebenezer was an experiment, and after him we've selected four 'Scrooges,' if you will, every year to reform for the holiday."
"Well, what do you want us to do about it?" Youngblood asked irritably, "Those three are out cold,"
"Which is why you three will be filling in for them this year," Clockwork informed them. Silence greeted this.
"WHAT?" All three shouted as one.
"You're mad if you think I'll do any such thing!" Vlad snarled.
"Come on, Clockwork, I've got a Christmas party to get to!" Danny protested at the same time.
"That's not fair! I won't do it!" Youngblood said stubbornly. Clockwork's eyes narrowed as he changed from an infant into an older man.
"All three of you will do this," He informed them quietly, "Unless you truly wish to see how miserable the Master of Time can make your lives." This stopped all protests, as the three exchanged glances.
"Where do I sign up?" Danny asked meekly. His submission was projected in the other two as well.
"Good. Now then, Here are you medallions. You will be Christmas Past-" This was directed at Youngblood, as Clockwork slipped a special medallion with green ribbon on his neck.
"Just concentrate on the medallion when it's time to move on, and it will bring you to the next scene you much go to. Once you're finished, you will be brought back here. Danny, you're Christmas Present," Another medallion, this ribbon was red.
"Just like what I told Youngblood here, all you need to do is concentrate. You, Plasmius, will be Christmas Yet-to-Come," Clockwork ignored Vlad's muttering of 'Lucky me,' As he handed the older halfa his medallion, this one had black ribbon. "It works just like Danny's and Youngblood's. Any questions?"
"Who're the lucky victims, anyways?" Danny asked, raising an eyebrow. Clockwork gave him a mysterious grin.
"You'll see…" He responded.
WoM- Who indeed? That's for the readers to decide! Two votes per review, and you can only vote for one character per show. Your choices are between;KIM POSSIBLE
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