Hello, everyone! It's me again! (Look! Next to the fridge! It's a nerd! It's a pain! It's…) Tucker, cut it, can you? And you're like one hundred times more a nerd than I will ever be. (Good point.) Okay; now, please, say the disclaimer.
(DISCLAIMER; Danny Phantom and all the related characters, including yours truly, is owned by Nickelodeon; we'll have several guest stars in this story owned by DC Comics and Warner Brothers; of course, Ramiro doesn't own any of us.)
Thanks; now, before starting, I want to admit some major influence for this story coming from one of my reviewers, Anthony Richardson, a.k.a. mkusenagi2. (Yep; he has done some pretty cool stories fusing several comic book universes, mainly Marvel, with the 'Kim Possible' series; check it if you want, but let me warn you, most of it is rated M.) Good thing you mentioned that, Tuck; also, we want to assure you guys this story will keep its 'T' rating; don't want any troubles. (Why should we? I mean, just because he writes some scenes with Kim and Ron that…) Wait, you hadn't been reading that, right, Tucker? You're underage! (-blushes and chuckles nervously- You don't have a story to present?)
I'm talking with you later. Okay, on with the show!
Leaguer in Training.
A Danny Phantom story by Acosta Pérez José Ramiro.
- Summer Camp.
"Let's see… toothbrush, checked; socks, checked; communicator, checked…"
"Don't forget the camera, and the pen for the autographed pictures! And remember, when autographing my photos, try convincing the ladies to leave a lipstick mark on them."
Danny rolled his eyes at Tucker's statement, yet chuckled slightly while finally zipping his backpack. Both boys were at Danny's bedroom, where the ghost boy was done preparing his baggage for the summer; it would be the most interesting camp Danny would ever attend.
Not everybody spends its summer at the Justice League's embassy.
"Are you ready, Danny? Val called from Star's house; she will be here in a few minutes." Jazz's voice was heard from downstairs.
"Yes, I'm ready!" Danny replied, and then turned at Tucker, "Well, Tuck, it's time… boy, I'm feeling like a thousand butterflies in my stomach!"
"I don't know why; I mean, you and Superman are like bacon and eggs. Don't think meeting other heroes will be that hard."
"Tucker, we're not that close, and I still feel a little nervous when he's around, I mean, the guy is… well, he's Superman! And what if I screw things up, or not having what's necessary, or…"
"Getting cold feet already?" Danny turned to see Sam giving him a knowing smile. "Danny, you had saved the world like a dozen times; in other words, you're as much as a hero as any of them, so relax, you'll do it fine; besides, this is a good chance to rest from all the Phantom's fan girls and reporters stalking you all day."
Danny got a little smile; even if he and Valerie had been an item for a while now, and both crazy in love with each other, Sam still remained his best friend besides Tucker, and she knew exactly what to say whenever he was either down or worried. And certainly, the last few months Danny's friends and family's support was particularly important to him.
The whole thing started when General Zod, a Superman's enemy, escaped imprisonment in the Ghost/Phantom Zone (a very severe kryptonian punishment reserved just for the worst criminals) and attacked Amity. Danny, with some help from Val, was able to fight him for a while, but at a consequence of said battle both their secret identities were revealed world wide; then, when Superman arrived to handle the villain, Vlad, fearing Danny would reveal his secret as well if surviving, entered the scene to help the general, and it was almost a miracle the heroes could prevail even with tons of help from Clockwork, Danielle, and Danny's parents.
That episode caused major changes in Danny's life, and, by association, in all his loved ones as well. Vlad's true nature was finally exposed, and lost his freedom alongside his fortune, eliminating a major menace, and Wayne Corp, the new owner of his company, gave both Danny and Valerie's parents new and very well paid jobs; Jack and Maddie, now knowing about his powers, were very understanding, so he finally could stop lying to them; and he no longer feared being bullied by Dash, or worried about his grades, since the teachers considered his superhero job when assigning homework or presenting an exam.
Not every change was positive, of course; as Sam said, he no longer had a private life with everyone looking at him all the time taking notes of every single thing Danny did, either as a human or as a ghost. Many girls at school were after him, especially Paulina, and it was just because of Danny's ability to turn Valerie and him self invisible and intangible to avoid them that the couple could still enjoy some time alone, and Paulina was still conserving her teeth.
The greatest change, however, was his honorary membership to the Justice League, recommended by Superman himself; now Danny had a very powerful back-up in case he ever needed it, but, of course, it also meant he had to act as back-up as well if the leaguers called him. Because of this, Superman talked to him and his parents, and convinced them to allow Danny to spend a month at the League's embassy so he could get some training and get used to work alongside other heroes; he might even participate in some missions as field training, if his tutors considered him ready enough. Despite Jack and Maddie being worried about the possibility of Danny getting hurt if facing a super villain, they eventually accepted and gave him permission to go.
"I'm really going to miss you guys. Please, take care, okay?" Danny said to both Tucker and Sam.
"Don't worry about us, Danny; just focus on what you're doing, and try to have some fun as well."
"Yeah, and kick some villains' butts for us when doing it." Tucker added, making his friends to chuckle a little. Danny then gave them both a little hug, and, grabbing his suitcase and backpack, made them all to phase down to the living room, where his parents and Jazz were waiting for him.
"Oh, my baby is going camp just when he was ten!" Maddie said in a motherly tone while hugging Danny, who blushed a little in embarrassment yet smiled widely at her.
"Remember to call us everyday, okay, son? Oh, and if you see a ghost, call us even faster." Jack said as placing a hand on Danny's shoulder, giving him a proud look.
"Take care, brother, and… well, make us proud as usually." Jazz and Danny embraced tightly. At that moment, the doorbell rang, and Tucker opened the door.
"Hi, Mister Gray, Val," Tucker greeted both Valerie and her dad, who greeted him as well while entering the house. Danny and Jazz broke the embrace, and dashed next to Val to give her a little kiss on her cheek.
"So, are you ready, Ghost?" Valerie smiled at Danny, who chuckled a little at the use of his pet name; kind of ironic considering it was also the way Valerie always called him when they were on the hunter-prey state of their relationship.
"Yes, and I see you are as well." Danny pointed at the backpack Valerie was carrying.
The girl was accepted as well as an honorary leaguer, but, unlike Danny, she wasn't interested on being a full-time member. Considering Danny would need to be absent for several days if a mission required it, having The Red Huntress permanently based in Amity was a good idea; Valerie would go to the embassy as well but only for a couple of weeks so her hunting gear and weapons could be analyzed and updated (Jack and Maddie already had made some analysis on it, and sent the results to the League's scientists), plus getting some lessons from the League's top fighters.
"Now, Danny, I want to talk with you about something." Damon said to the boy in serious tone. "I know you and my daughter really like each other, and I trust you, but, well, since you two will be on your own several miles away from here…"
"Mister Gray, we'll be at a huge building with several adults around; even if we tried doing something that wasn't exactly… adequate," Danny and Valerie blushed a little when he said that, making Tucker to chuckle and the rest of the group to get serious looks, "doubt we would be able to do it with guys who can see through walls watching us."
"Saying that for me, Danny?"
Everyone turned at the door, and wide opened their eyes at the sight of Superman, arms folded and giving them a little smile.
"Sorry… needed a good argument." Danny chuckled nervously, making everyone else to relax and chuckle as well.
"Can't deny it; Mister and Mrs. Fenton, Mister Gray," Superman directed to the adults, "I know this isn't easy for any of you, but promise we'll keep an eye on Danny and Valerie in every sense of the world. Besides, you trust them to handle ghosts, so guess you can do it as well in other matters."
"Guess so; well, thanks again, S-Man." Jack shook hands with Superman, and Maddie did the same a moment later.
"Please, take care of our kids; no matter how powerful Danny is, he'll always be our baby."
"Mom," Danny rolled his eyes.
"I understand, Mrs. Fenton, and don't worry, we'll do." Superman then shook hands with Damon, who simply nodded at him, yet his face expressed his thoughts perfectly… 'Please, protect my daughter'.
"Good to see you too," Superman addressed Jazz, Tucker and Sam, who finally greeted him as well. Then, after a last kiss and hug from their respective parents, and a last good-bye from their friends, Danny and Valerie walked out of the house, finding a large metallic chest waiting for them.
"I brought this for your luggage," Superman told them, "that way I can transport it, and we'll be able to travel faster."
"Well, in that case… I'm Going Ghost!" Danny morphed into his Phantom persona, and then gave Val a knowing look.
"How about this one… Ready to Hunt!" Valerie said as her outfit, as always, seemed to appear from nowhere and covered her entirely in a couple of seconds.
Danny lifted an eyebrow at her.
"I know, the battle-cry needs work." Valerie shrugged, and then activated her techno-sled. "Want a ride, Ghost?"
Danny smiled and jumped at the back of the sled, with his arms around Valerie's shoulders; they gave each other a wide smile, which made Superman to chuckle a little. Of course, Valerie's sled could reach escape speed in a few seconds, being way faster than Danny's flight, so it was the best option to follow Superman, even if obviously wouldn't use his top speed for this little trip.
The Kryptonian carried with the chest and, a few seconds later, the three of them were flying around Fenton Works, waving good-bye to everyone, who now were at the windows to give them a last look; a moment later, they dashed away, heading to Metropolis.
Unknown to the group, someone else was looking at them, and getting an evil smile.
Tucker and Sam decided to stay at Fenton Works, just like Damon, waiting for Danny and Valerie to call them when arriving, which happened barely fifteen minutes later. Then, they stayed at the place for the rest of the day, Damon chatting with Jack and Maddie, and the teens hanging around with Jazz at her room.
"I just thought about something." Tucker rubbed his chin, "We have the best ghost hunters many miles away; what if we need them?"
"Well, you saw how fast they arrived to Metropolis, Tucker," Jazz pointed, "surely they'll return just as quickly if we need them."
"Good point." Sam nodded, and then stretched her arms, "but I still hope nothing bad happens."
"Something like this?"
The teens turned at the window, and gasped a split second before getting captured by one of Skulker's nets. The hunter then carried them out of the house, the same moment the Fentons' ghost alarms detected his presence.
"Hey, what's your problem, you brute?" Sam snapped at the ghost, who simply grinned evilly in response.
"Freeze, specter!" Jack growled as he and Maddie dashed out from the house, aiming at Skulker with their blasters, Damon right behind them.
The ghost hunters were taken back by a powerful hit courtesy of a large dark figure attacking from aside them. Jazz wide opened their eyes when recognizing Johnny 13, riding his motorcycle with Kitty hugging him from behind, both of them the other side of the street.
"Remember me, Jazz?" Johnny grinned at the red-haired girl, which made Kitty to frown yet did nothing to him.
"What the… it's a ghost convention, or what?" Tucker exclaimed.
"You can say that, my dear boy." Penelope Spectra appeared from behind Skulker, and then gave Damon and the Fentons a predatory look, "Want to stay, my friends?"
Before Damon or the hunters could do a thing, a large green octopus phased through the ground behind them, and trapped them in his tentacles.
"Nice job, Bertrand." Spectra congratulated his assistant, and then got a huge grin as a red glow covered her body, "Ah, fear, desperation, confusion… what a lovely emotions' feast!"
"Here is the part where you fools tell us your evil plan, isn't it?" Sam growled.
"Sorry, Technus didn't come with us." Skulker's comment made the other ghosts to laugh evilly.
"But this time I see no harm on doing it." Spectra cleared her throat, "We know the little ghost boy isn't home, and the girlfriend is gone as well, so decided to have some fun. I mean, no ghost boy to stop me from getting some emotional charge…"
"Or us from creating some little mayhem." Kitty added as Johnny and Shadow smiled widely.
"And, the moment he knows we got you, I'll have a trap ready for him and the huntress, and finally catch them for good!" Skulker finished.
"Uh, nice plan, but you guys know he is now with the Justice League, right?" Jazz arched an eyebrow at the hunter.
"Oh, please, they are no big deal!" Johnny chuckled, "Sure, they can fight human criminals, but how good are them catching ghosts?"
"We're about to find out!"
A fast red and blue blur snatched the net from Skulker's hands. The ghost turned to see a tall raven-haired woman, dressed on body armor resembling a red, golden and blue bikini with white stars, wearing a golden tiara and a lasso hanging from her left side, and silver bracelets, landing softly and ripping the net effortlessly.
"W-W-W-Wonder Woman?" Tucker got stunned at the sight of the gorgeous Amazon while Jazz and Sam got impressed faces.
"Now, you release the rest of your prisoners, and leave, or get ready to face the consequences." Diana, also known as Wonder Woman, said to the ghosts in a soft yet authoritarian tone.
"Forget it, lady! There is no way can handle all of us at the same time on your own!" Spectra roared as changing to her real shadowy form.
"Maybe… but I'm not alone." WW gave them a knowing smirk as two other figures dived from the sky; an Afro-American man dressed in green and black outfit, and a red-haired winged woman wearing a yellow exercising outfit and holding a large mace.
"Get them!" Spectra commanded the other ghosts as charging against Hawkgirl, who avoided the initial attack as Green Lantern focused on Johnny and Kitty.
"I'll get you, woman!" Skulker aimed at Diana with his arms' blasters, and started shooting at her.
PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG! PTANG!
"IT'S IMPOSSIBLE!" Skulker roared in surprise as the Amazon deflected every single blast with her bracelets while advancing against him.
"Stop everyone, or I'm destroying them!" Bertrand, still in octopus form, yelled to the heroes while tightening his grip on the adult humans. At that moment, an imposing green figure phased through the ground, and, when turning solid, delivered a powerful hit at the ghost, making him to release his prey.
"Johnny, do something!" Kitty yelled in rage and fear as Green Lantern charged against them.
"Shadow, defend us!" Johnny commanded and the dark creature charged against Green Lantern, yet its claws couldn't pass the energy shield the hero formed around him.
"Against the darkest night," GL said as preparing his attack, "the brightest light!"
Shadow received a full blast from the hero's power ring, disappearing a second later. Johnny and Kitty gasped and tried to escape on the motorcycle, but were stopped by a green wall appearing in front of them.
The ghosts were now barely conscious, and were about to phase through the ground to escape when a powerful yet familiar sucking energy caught them, but, unlike other times, this was green; Green Lantern, having seen the Fenton Thermos in action thanks to a video Danny gave to the League, created one with his ring, trapping Johnny and Kitty without any problem.
"You're a fraud, alien!" Spectra said in her usual manipulating tone while still trying to hit Hawkgirl, "A spy who is rejected by her own race! Someone who don't deserve to be called a hero!"
"Tell me something I don't know." Hawkgirl, unlike most of Penelope's victims, was unaffected by her manipulations, and instead focused on the enemy's moves, waiting for an opening. The winged woman then lifted her mace, aiming at the ghost's head.
"You ignorant! Regular weapons can't harm ghosts!"
Spectra fell to the ground, totally knocked out, as Hawkgirl grinned slightly.
"Thanagarian weaponry, lady; made to beat both flesh and bone and magical or intangible creatures."
Bertrand growled and morphed into a huge bee to attack the green man who dared hitting him. However, when about to sting him, the man turned intangible, so the ghost missed its target.
"WHAT? PHASING IS A GHOST THING; HOW CAN YOU DO IT?"
"It's also a Martian thing," the hero replied, "just like shape-shifting."
Before Bertrand could do a thing, his enemy morphed into a huge Chinese dragon that charged against him. A few seconds later, the bee was morphing back into a defeated ghost, and the dragon morphed into J'onn, The Martian Manhunter.
"You had enough?" Diana said to Skulker after he shot a last blast, now right in front of the ghost.
"Yes… but enough of you, woman!" The ghost threw a punch against Diana, who caught it without even blinking. Skulker tried to hit with his other fist, but the woman caught it as well; the hunter struggled to try escaping her grip, yet it was useless, and he was way too proud to phase, thinking it would be admitting a woman was stronger than him.
"If you want to leave, let me help you." Diana threw a powerful kick against the ghost.
Skulker's armless body impacted a nearby wall, denting it, and fell to the ground. Wonder Woman dropped the mechanical arms, and then threw her lasso to catch the ghost before he could turn intangible.
"Are you okay?" J'onn asked the teens, Damon and the Fentons, who barely moved during the whole battle, impressed at the heroes' display.
"Yes… of course, we are! Wow! That was amazing!" Jack said, back to his usual cheerful self.
"Amazing… wonderful… beautiful…" Tucker stared at Wonder Woman, still mesmerized by the Amazon's looks.
"How did you guys arrive here so fast?" Jazz got her voice back as Green Lantern used his energy-made Thermos to collect the rest of the ghosts.
"We got teleported from the Watchtower." Hawkgirl pointed up in the sky, with a playful smirk. "You didn't think we would take away your city's hero and leave all of you unprotected, right?"
"The thought crossed our minds." Sam said as folding her arms and chuckling slightly; she then gave Tucker a fast look, and turned at Diana. "Uh… Miss Wonder Woman…"
"You can call me Diana." The Amazon replied in a kind tone; granted with beauty of body and soul by Aphrodite herself, it was easy for Sam to see why Tucker was so impressed.
"Okay… Diana… uh… can you and Hawkgirl give me an autograph each… and one for my friend here?" Sam pointed at Tucker, "I know for sure that, once he reacts, would never forgive me if not asking for it."
"You can't do this to me!" Skulker, the last ghost waiting to be sucked by the Thermos and still held captive by the lasso, growled at the heroes, "I'm the greatest hunter of… of… no, I'm a fraud!" The ghost yelled, surprising everyone but Diana.
"I'm just a little guy using a huge mechanical suit; without it, I look like a demented frog! When alive, always wanted to be feared and respected, but was a coward, so when turning into a ghost decided to focus on being someone bigger and stronger! But I'm a loser, even if some ghosts see me as a natural leader, deep inside I'm always fearing they'll see me for what I am! That ghost kid always beats me; I envy him and his courage! I still sleep with a teddy bear… his name is Mister Fuzzy! I was dating Ember but she changed me for that werewolf; she said he was bigger and better than me in every aspect! And when alive I served tea at old ladies' meetings!"
"Diana's lasso," Hawkgirl finally said when realizing what was happening, getting a knowing smile and looking at Sam and Jazz, "No matter how much you try resisting it makes you say the truth."
"Never considered using it in a senator or something?" Sam got her mischievous look as Skulker's rambling continued.
"I wore diapers until age 6!"
At the JL's embassy, Danny and Valerie finished the tour, and were impressed, to say the least. It was enough that their guide was no other than The Flash, but the place was amazing; basically, a little city with a relaxing area (pool included), cafeteria, dorms, and top technology used on training facilities, monitor duty, aircrafts and teleporters; dreaming with being an astronaut someday, Danny couldn't hide his excitement when Flash showed them the League's trademark spaceships, the Javelins, especially when the speedster said they would be taking some flying lessons if good enough in the simulators.
"So, what do you guys think of the place? Pretty cool, isn't it?" The Flash asked the teens while the three were at the cafeteria, carrying their trays.
"Cool doesn't even close to describe it!" Valerie, using her Red Huntress' outfit, exclaimed; of course, since she was about to eat, her cowl was down.
"Tell me about it! I mean, we are surrounded by some of the world's greatest heroes… and talking to one right now!" Danny said to Flash, who chuckled slightly.
"I know this can be a little overwhelming. I was the same when getting my powers; younger than you two, and already running around in tights fighting bad guys. And it can take a while to get used to eat at a place where the chair can be a teammate."
Valerie and Danny gave him a confused look; the elder hero then pointed at a nearby table, where a green-haired gorgeous woman was about to sit down at a red and flesh colored chair. She was about to do it when her companion, a white-haired girl, noticed something about the seat, and said it to her. The green-haired female's right hand got covered by a green flame, and attempted to touch the chair; a second later, it jumped at its own as changing into a red-outfitted man wearing goggles, who immediately gave the women a sheepish smile.
"That's Plas for you; he is a cool guy, and pretty funny at parties, but wouldn't trust him with a pretty woman around; good thing Bea hadn't been moody lately. To think I was just like that when starting!" Flash chuckled as he and his companions finally sat down.
"After seeing that, how can anyone expect us to cool down and relax?" Valerie said, still impressed at Plastic Man's stunt.
"Simple; you saw a leaguer being human." Flash shrugged, "You guys must remember that, just like you two, there's always a human being under the tights… or a humanoid alien, or creature, or whatever. The point is, we have qualities and defects, just like everyone else; so, you can relax and turn human if you want, unless can also eat in ghostly form." The speedster said to Danny; the boy relaxed a lot, and followed his advice, changing into human; the thought of a hero doing something Tucker would imitate if having the same abilities was funny and familiar enough.
"Good; now, after dinner, I'll show you your rooms." Flash said before eating a spoonful of smashed potatoes; when Danny and Valerie arrived, he took their baggage to the rooms, returning two seconds later, so they hadn't seen them yet, "You, Valerie, will be at room 4-E, right in front of Fire and next to Black Canary, or Beatriz and Dinah; don't worry, they're used to be called after their real names. And Danny, you'll be at room 5-A, in front of Vigilante and next to Ollie's… that's Green Arrow."
As Flash explained to the teens during the visit, every leaguer had a room either at the embassy or at the Watchtower, even those with a house of their own, so could be comfortable when spending more than one day at work.
"So, what're we going to do tomorrow?" Valerie asked.
"Well, you guys will get your first class before breakfast, at 6 o' clock. One recommendation; don't be late."
"That's not something I'm good at." Danny rolled his eyes, and then got a little chill when feeling a strong hand on his shoulder.
"Then start getting good, kid; I'm not going to baby-sit you two."
Valerie and Danny wide opened their eyes when looking at the man talking to them; he was using a totally black body suit, without any distinctive symbols, plus using what seemed to be clawed gloves; his cowl was down, revealing a gray-haired, tough looking old man yet his suit revealed still conserved a well built body.
"Don't worry, Ted, they'll be on time." Flash grinned at the man, who simply nodded at him and the teens and then left to eat his lunch.
"Better rest well today, guys," Flash whispered to Danny and Valerie, "Ted Grant is a great teacher, but not exactly an easy to please one."
Danny nodded and started eating immediately, but Valerie froze for a few seconds before doing the same. Being a fighter even before getting her hunting gear, she immediately recognized that name; a wide smile appeared on the girl's face as tasting her chicken salad.
It's not every day you are getting trained by former heavy-weight champion Ted "The Wildcat" Grant.