Danny's parents find out about Danny … but not quite the way you might expect.
Jack knew he could be oblivious. After all, every year he forgot about his wedding anniversary; he focused so hard on ghosts he had been convinced Jazzy-pants was one; he hadn't realized until someone had told him, but he had completely mortified Danny and Jazz both with his trips to their school to search for ghosts.
But Jack wasn't oblivious any more.
"Jack, Danny is not a ghost," Maddie said.
"Of course not," Jack agreed. "He's possessed by one."
What other conclusion could he come to? Jack was somewhat incompetent, but Maddie was pretty much perfect, and both their detection inventions led straight to Danny.
Maddie had looked sorrowful. "It would explain his missing curfew …"
"His solid C-minuses …"
"His bruises …" Neither of them had noticed the bruising until a month ago, when Danny had come home looking as if he'd been in a fight with ten very angry cats. 'Don't ask,' Danny had said wearily upon his parents' confused looks, and trudged up the stairs. But that hadn't been the first time … and it wasn't the last, either.
"It explains the bout of craziness he had last year," Maddie mused.
"And how he gets to his room without us seeing him come in the front door!" Jack pointed out.
"And his detentions."
"There's only one thing to do," Jack said firmly.
And that was how Jack and Maddie had found themselves crouching next to the stairs, waiting for Danny to come in the front door.
One minute before curfew, Danny did just that, looking as weary as he usually did these days. "Mom, Dad, I'm home," he said slowly. "Before curfew, for once," he muttered under his breath.
"NOW, MADDIE! Hit him!" Jack jumped out. Maddie was faster, throwing herself at Danny with outstretched hands.
"Aaaaah!" Danny screamed, his eyes wide, and Maddie pinned him to the ground. "Mom? Dad?" His voice rose hysterically.
Jack lumbered over. "Don't worry, son, we're going to suck the ghost right out of you!" He lifted the Fenton Xtractor proudly.
"We know you've been overshadowed, son!" Maddie said encouragingly. "Don't worry; we'll take care of you!"
But if anything, Danny just went paler. "Are you NUTS!?" Danny screeched.
"That's the ghost talking, honey!" Maddie kept holding Danny down. "Hit it, Jack!"
Jack did exactly that, turning on the Fenton Xtractor and bringing it down to Danny's head. "Hang on, son! Just a minute and you'll be free!" Jack promised.
But Danny squeezed his eyes shut. "You don't understand," he gasped—
And then the Fenton Xtractor did the most unexpected thing: it didn't suck any ghost out of Danny:
It sucked Danny himself right inside.
"Waaaugh!" The Xtractor shuddered, then stalled, and finally stopped, leaving a nonplussed Jack and Maddie staring at each other in horrified surprise.
"There's no way that could happen," Maddie murmured. "Human bodies can't do that!"
"But ghost bodies can," Jack said, sounding unusually subdued.
"You think that Danny really is …?" Maddie whispered, going pale herself.
The body of the vacuum cleaner shook as if it was being pounded on. "Um, I can explain," said Danny's voice hesitantly. "Really. But could you let me out first?"