The Ectoplasmic Arts
Ranma, Danny Phantom, and any other series used in this fanfic belong to their rightful owners/publishers/whatever. I don't own anything.
Timeline of Danny Phantom is after Infinite Realms, which will diverge and not lead to the events of Phantom Planet.
Timeline of Ranma ½ is… sometime after the end of the manga.
I'd like to thank the people who provided some good ideas.
The impromptu visit to the Fentons didn't last too long before Ranma was on his way back to the Tendo Dojo. Danny's desire to learn martial arts dropped considerably when the braid-haired Saotome mentioned it would take a considerable amount of blood, sweat, and tears (half figuratively/half seriousness). The boy mentioned that he got enough beating as it is on the battlefield with ghosts, and that he didn't really want to spend his free time getting beaten up as well. There was also the slight fact that the Fenton family would be leaving not too long from now. That also put a dent in thing, and made one wonder just how the Fenton parents were going to teach him how to ghost hunt in a short amount of time. The martial artist did say he could teach the young Fenton a few starting exercises in martial arts, and that they should meet tomorrow in the park.
"Chaaaa…" He said to himself as he scratched the back of his head. "Do I really need ta do that? My martial arts in my ghost form would be enough." His thoughts ran along something else. "Then again, do I really want to always have ta transform into that form? I don't really wanna keep relying on that; especially because I'll have to be a girl for that. Who knows, maybe it'll be worth it." It was such a hard decision.
The raven-haired boy had to suddenly suppress an incredible shiver at the sight of Maomolin, the Ghost Cat, running down the opposite side of the street while being chased by the Fenton Parents. The former was covered in green gooey ectoplasm and entangled in the weird fishing pole thingie. Thanking the gods that the large cat ghost didn't decide to come near him, Ranma kept moving on. He did slightly feel sorry for the ghost cat though.
Finally arriving back at the dojo, Ranma was glad to note that Akane seemed to have been made aware of the situation a little while ago, and so she handled the situation with the parents. Genma was in knots, Soun was a human waterfall, and his mom was just sitting calmly at the table; a little huffy maybe, but calm non-the-less. "Did you get them ta see the light Akane?"
The short-haired tomboy gave a frown. "It wasn't easy to do, but I managed." It was then that Genma, who somehow got out of his knots, was up in front of Ranma.
"You left your poor father alone to be beaten Ranma! If you had just complied with what we were saying, you would not have angered your fiancée andoOF!" A foot to the face silenced the fat man.
"I'm not in the mood for your ramblin' tonight, pops." He removed his foot and the overweight man fell forward onto the floor. Nabiki chose to enter the room at that moment.
"So where were you sent to earlier after your trip via Akane Air, Ranma?" She wondered if she could make any yen off of whatever it was. Although whatever she was expecting, was not what she got.
"Ah nothing much" Ranma began, "I just crashed into the hotel room of the people who's ghost device shocked me, and then they decided to take it upon themselves ta train me to be a ghost hunter after they saw I wasn't too harmed from the freefall and ceiling crash." Everyone stared at him and began to digest the information.
"Oh my" Kasumi started, "that sounds like such an interesting field of work."
Nabiki gave a snicker. "Figures you'd end up getting zapped at one moment, and then being trained at the other by the same people." For some reason, she was picturing the boy in a Ghostbusters's outfit complete with vacuum pack thing. The whole image caused the great Ice Queen to fall onto her back and laugh her ass off.
Everybody's eyes locked onto the girl with the page-boy style haircut who was laughing her ass off in the most uncharacteristic way. Looking at each other, they all decided to not ask.
The next day found Ranma walking along the wall towards the small park he said he would train the younger Fenton at. It wasn't that bad of a day outside; a little cloudy and breezy, but nothing more. As the braid-haired boy neared the park, his eyes caught sight of Gosunkugi. The sunken face and bag-eyed boy was surrounded by a bunch of guys in leather biker clothing, and he was trying to get a book that the largest of the guys was holding out of the voodoo boy's reach, while the others appeared to taunt him.
Hopping off of the wall, the raven-haired martial artist decided to intervene in the issue. "Heya Gosunkugi, you having a bit of trouble here?" The pale boy looked towards him with eyes filled with a little hope. The boy may have disliked Ranma for being able to be around Akane so much, but the martial artist HAD helped him out of scraps.
The thugs turned around and caught sight of the braid-haired boy. The apparent leader gave a bored look. "Move along punk. This doesn't concern you, or maybe you would like to be the spot under my boot?" His face then turned into a frown when the boy proceeded to just yawn. "Last warning punk."
"Sorry, can't go around leavin' people to scum like you." His movement was quick as he was suddenly within the zone of the large guy. With a well placed elbow to the gut, the leader of the gang bend forward in pain. The book in his hands fell out, and Gosunkugi managed to catch it.
"BOSS!" One of the flunkies said as he looked upon their downed leader. Growling, he took out a pocket knife and charged for the little punk, intent on cutting his throat. Dodging the stab, Ranma grabbed onto the arm of the thug. Giving a mighty swing, the raven-haired martial artist flung the guy into his friend. Picking up the larger man, he gave him the same treatment.
"We won't forget this you bastard." One of them growled out as they hefted their fallen comrades and ran off. Ranma gave a mere shrug as he walked towards the boy he saved. Glancing at the book, he noticed the title said 'mythology' on it.
"Thanks… Saotome." The sunken face boy said on his knees.
"No problem Gosunkugi." Ranma casually said. "Say, aren't ya usually just interested in voodoo and all that crud, and not that mythology stuff?" He received a nod as the boy opened the book.
"That's true Saotome, but I can sometimes find things in here of interest. Some of the deities of mythology are worth learning about." He located a random page in the book. "Here's the page I was on. Nyx"
"Nyx… the Primordial Greek Goddess of the night; Born from Chaos, and created the gods and goddesses of atmosphere, day, blame, toil, fate, death, sleep, deception, friendship, age, and strife. It has been said that the king of the gods, Zeus, feared an angered Nyx."
Ranma blinked at the useless information. "That's… interesting. Well, see you later Gosunkugi." He only managed to take a few steps before the pale boy called out to him.
"The O-bon festival is coming up in a few days, isn't it?" His voice was slightly low.
"Yeah" Ranma answered, "Why did you want to know?"
"Do you think… Kogane will be there?" The voodoo user asked with a kind of wistfulness in his voice. He had met the ghost girl, Kogane Musashima, last year at the previous O-bon. She stole his heart almost instantly, and he wished he could have been with her longer. He may have also had some feelings for Akane, but he would frequently wonder what Kogane was doing.
Ranma turned around to answer the boy. "She most likely will. She did last year anyway, so why not this year?" The braid-haired boy watched as Gosunkugi began to get a kind of far away look in his eyes as he thought about the brown-haired ghost girl. 'Aw jeez, he has it bad. If Kogane doesn't show up, he'll probably turn into more of a shell than he already is. There's nothing I can do about it, is there?'
"I hope you're right Saotome, I really do." The bag-eyed said as he got up and walked away with a longing look in his eye.
'Damn it to hell.' Ranma thought to himself as he looked upwards. 'What the hell am I supposed to about this? I feel like I should do something, but there's nothing I can do!'
"Yo, Ranma!" Danny said as he appeared.
'Then again, maybe there is some way.' The raven-haired martial artist thought as he turned towards the other half-ghost. "Hey Danny, I have a small question…."
After filling Danny in on the small situation, one more thing the 14-year-old boy found odd about the older boy's life, the two headed back to the hotel that the Fentons were currently using. Their parents apparently left to return to the Ghost Convention that was still going on for a few more days… although Jack first wanted to stop at a store that had a sale on fudge… lots and lots of fudge.
"Let me get this straight." Jazz started to her brother after greeting Ranma. "You think our parents might have some hidden ghost portal stuffed into one of those boxes? Even if they did, wouldn't it be in pieces?"
"If they could stick a giant inflatable clone of dad into a dash board that has the ability to drive an aircraft, a little cruddy though, then I'm sure they somehow managed to do it with a ghost portal." Danny said as he began going through the unopened boxes.
"Oh come on Danny, it's not like a ghost portal is going to… pop… out…" After one of the boxes was opened, the very thing they were looking for popped out of it. "Ok, forget what I said." The orange-haired girl said as she had her hand to her forehead.
Ranma walked around the round object and examined it. "Well, what now?"
"We turn it on. I don't see any cord, so it must work with just a button." Looking around a bit, the 14-year-old half-ghost boy finally found the button he was looking for. After pressing it, a voice spoke.
"Ghost Portal Activated, please insert fudge… I mean Ghost."
"Ok, your dad has a fudge complex…" Ranma said with a half-lidded stare as the portal opened with a green glow. "Now what exactly do we do?"
"We go ghost." The younger boy said simply as a pair of white-ish blue rings appeared at his waist and traveled up and down his body to reveal his ghost form.
"Uh… right." After a slight moment of concentration, light purple rings appeared around Ranma and did the same thing. The now ghost-girl stood there in ghostly splendor.
"You know" Jazz began, "that outfit really suits you in some odd way. Like some kind of darkness or night angel or something"
"Don't remind me." The now silver-purple haired ghost-girl deadpanned
I'm sorry for asking again, but have you thought up a name for your ghost form yet?" Danny asked
Closing her eyes, Ranma began to think for something. 'Darkness… night… That's it!' The purple-eyed ghost slammed her fist into the palm of her hand. "I've figured it out. Nyx Chaotica. Gosunkugi told me that Nyx was the goddess of the night who was born from Chaos. Since I now look like some darkness… angel" A glare was sent towards Jazz, "and my life is full of chaos, then why not that name?"
"Aw man, why couldn't I think up a name that sounded so cool?" Danny grumbled to himself as he thought about his own name. "Ah well, let's get going. I'm not sure how long it would take to find just one certain ghost in the Ghost Zone." He turned to his older sister. "Jazz, could you keep an eye out for mom and dad?"
"It's what I do." Jazz said simply. "If they see the portal, I'll just tell them that it popped out on its own, and that some ghosts managed to fly out. They'll then charge out of the hotel to try and find the ghosts. It should keep them busy for a bit."
The trip through the glowing green gateway gave Ranma a slight displaced feeling at first. It only lasted a second and was done with. Shaking her head, the ghost-girl in purple looked around the place they were in. The sky was a sickly green that seemed to be made of flowing ectoplasm. Various doors of shapes and sizes also seemed to litter the sky as they floated around aimlessly. She was snapped out of her examining when Danny began to speak. "I've never been to this world in the Ghost Zone before."
Breaking her view from the sky, the purple-eyed ghost looked at where they were standing. The place had a slightly classical Japanese feel to it. Sakura trees, a pond, and other things that resembled the look were there; although there were also what looked small houses and a large classic school setting. "Do ghosts even need to go to school?" Ranma asked curiously.
"Well, there was that 1950's black and white version of the school I go to. It was all stuck in the past and monochrome. I stood out well."
"Who knows, maybe we'll find Kogane here." Her ears started to pick up the sound of… enjoyment, music, and crowds. "You hear that Danny?"
"I don't hear anythi… hey, now I do." The white-haired ghost boy said as the sound picked up. "It's coming from that direction." He was pointing behind the strange school setting. Glancing at each other and giving a nod, the two half-ghosts took off to investigate. What they saw when they reached their destination made them stare in awe.
"Wow" Ranma simply stated as he looked on. The area was full of ghosts of many different shapes, sizes, forms, styles, etc. The area was decked out like some kind of festival, with stands, enjoyment, games, and a large stage was near the back where a bunch of apparitions were crowded. Some ghosts were walking around in kimonos and eating cotton candy. There were also many others playing games, dancing, and having fun. A banner floating in the sky said '750th Annual Spirit Talent Festival; Singing, Dancing, Music, Acrobatics, and Other'. "Maybe she's here. I do have a slight problem though."
"I don't think we should be just randomly flyin' up and askin' her questions that a random ghost shouldn't know."
"Well, you could always tell her who you really are. It's not like my identity is fully secret among the Ghost Zone." As they continued exploring, their ears heard a faint song.
"Badger of Mt. Kokkuri"
"I'd recognize that song anywhere." Ranma said as she started looking around for sight of the brown haired ghost.
"Looked to the sky and wept"
"You should try and get into professional singing, Kogane. With a little work, you could be great." Another voice that Danny recognized announced. Said boy gave a groan and hoped he wouldn't end up getting attacked today. Ranma looked at him in confusion before casting her eyes in the direction she heard the voices from.
Sitting on a bench under a tree was the long brown-haired ghost she was looking for. Kogane was wearing a pink kimono, and there was another ghost girl sitting next to her. This one had the appearance of a rock singer in a kimono. Her pitch black kimono had a skull and music note motif, and on her feet were a pair of large gray boots that had the design of a skull near the toes. She had pale white skin, green eyes, and her neon-light blue hair was worn in a ponytail that almost seemed to be made of blue flames. In her hands was a purple guitar.
"You know her?" Ranma asked as she pointed to said girl.
"Yeah I do. Her name's Ember McLain. I've had to fight her from time to time. She has helped me a few times before, but I believe she's not one to hesitate before trying to fry my hide."
Well we won't know 'til we make ourselves known, will we?" The silver-purple haired martial artist asked as she began walking casually towards the two. Her companion just looked at her as if she was nuts. "Hey Kogane, I'd like ta talk to you for a second."
The brown-eyed ghost girl looked towards the approaching purple-eyed ghost girl who called her name. She didn't remember ever meeting anyone who looked like her. "Do I know you?" She asked softly.
Before the new half-ghost could respond, the pale girl jumped up and pointed in Danny's direction. "What are you doing here ghost-boy?"
"Well you see, I'm just.. AH!" He was blasted back by the sound waves from Ember's guitar as the ghost rocker took after the boy. Watching the little battle, Ranma sat next to Kogane with a bag of popcorn to watch the little scuffle. Where she got the popcorn, nobody knows. Her head then turned to the one she came here for.
"Several strange things have happened, but it's me, Ranma." Kogane looked at her blankly for a few seconds. "You saw my curse for a short time on yer first visit, right?" Receiving a nod, she continued. "I was thrown into a ghost portal as it was turnin' on a few days ago, became extra crispy, and found out my female side has become a ghost girl, and now I don't have an issue with cold water."
Looking her up and down, the brown-haired spirit gave her comment. "You make a beautiful ghost, Ranma." A smile appeared as she received a glare. "To what do I owe this visit to though? I know it can't be just a casual visit."
"Gosunkugi and O-bon" The silver-purple haired ghost-girl simply stated. She watched as several emotions began to play on Kogane's face. "I met him earlier today, an' he seemed to miss you greatly. He asked me if I thought that you'd make it to the O-bon so he could see you again." She watched as the girl remained silent for several seconds. Danny's ghostly form was tossed over their heads while Ember took after, but that did little to distract as Ranma continued to eat her popcorn while waiting for Kogane's answer.
Finally, Kogane looked back towards the ghost in purple and gave a smile. "I believe I will be able to make it. I don't think I can give up a chance to meet Gosunkugi again. The time we had together last year was so much shorter than it could have been." Her eyes looked towards a suddenly chuckling Ranma.
"Look at me… Ranma Saotome, great martial artist, roped inta playin' the role of a half-ghost cupid for a human boy an' ghost girl; just as long as I don't have ta give any damn advice or anything." Danny suddenly crashed at both of their feet. "Yo, you ok there kid?"
"I'm fine; I'm just in a battle against one of my enemies who has the ability to use music as a weapon." He braced himself for the charging musical ghost… and blinked when his companion grabbed said ghost by the collar of her kimono and held her in the air.
"What the hell are you doing? I'm not finished with the boy!" Ember yelled as she looked at the silver-purple haired girl.
"As fun as it all sounds, I like a good fight myself, but we didn't come here to fight. I just came here ta meet a friend." She looked around a bit. "Besides, do ya want to damage the festival stands here anymore an' cause a mob to be after yer hide?" There was some property damage to the scenery, and a few stands were busted up.
"Oops" was all the ghost rocker could say as she looked upon a few angered faces.
After they managed to calm the angry festival goers, Ember wanted to know who the silver-purple haired ghost-girl was and introduced herself "Ember McLain" The pale-white ghost rocker said as she shook Ranma's hand. "That's a nice outfit you have there. The black choker with purple gem is a nice touch." She began to blink when the ghost in purple started to fume up a storm. "Um… what's her problem?" She asked in a whisper to the white haired ghost boy.
"Like me, she's half-ghost, but she's actually a boy who turns into a ghost girl." Ember looked at him as if he was crazy, and then she looked back to the ghost in purple and black who was still fuming. After several seconds, the usually blue haired enemy of Danny's began to fall on her back and started laughing.
"Damn it, it's not funny!" Ranma growled as her eyes began to glow. The green eyes of Ember got a small blank look for a second before returning to normal with a slight fearful look. Looking at her in confusion, the ghost with silver-purple hair called out to her. "Um… you ok?"
"Wh… what the hell was that?"
"I just had a vague vision of having my vocal cords destroyed after looking in your eyes!" Her body began to shiver. "That's got to be my worst nightmare." She received a few looks from the three people present, before two of them looked upon the one in purple.
"Ranma" Danny began, "do you think that might be a power of yours? Looking into someone's eyes and bringing one of their fears to life in their mind?" If that was true, then he'd REALLY hate to be on the receiving end of one of those looks. Although he would like to know what one of Vlad's worst fears would be.
"I dunno." The recent half-ghost said as she blinked. Whatever she did made her eyes feel funny, as if they were kind of displaced. It was not something she'd want to feel all the time; although it was worth noting for later. It was at that moment that a large something tapped on her shoulder.
"Excuse me there pretty lady." A voice said behind her. The voice caused her to stiffen as she looked at the owner of the voice, Maomolin. She expected herself to start freaking out, but the fear didn't come. A little bit of nervousness did, but the fear she felt when her eyes caught sight of the ghost cat earlier today as a boy didn't come. Her purple eyes widened at that.
'Does this mean that… I don't have the fear when I'm a ghost?" Her deep purple eyes began to sparkle as she began to jump around in glee. Maybe she would regain the full fear when she returned to a boy, but this was still a happy moment damn it. "WHOOHA!!!"
Maomolin was completely confused by what just happened. "Excuse me there pretty ghost lady. Would you like to be my ghost girl?" As soon as he said that, the silver-purple haired martial artist ghost gave a glare his way, and then her mouth turned a bit sinister as her eyes began to glow. Maomolin's eyes became dull for a few moments before coming back to normal. "AH!!!! I'LL FOREVER BE ALONE!!!" The large ghost cat screamed as he turned on his heals and ran off.
"Whoo…" Ranma said as she shook her head. "A skill like that would not be good ta use in the heat of battle. It's like I'm goin' cross-eyed an' out of focus." She shook her head again. "I also almost saw the vision he was havin'."
"That's still an interesting ability to have." Danny said as he thought about the possibilities of a skill like that. 'I wonder what Dash's biggest fear would be.' The thought of seeing the bully of a jock cowering and screaming was very tempting. The thought was thrown out of his mind as he turned to look at his companion. "Since we finished what we needed to do, let's get out of here. I don't want my parents to see the open portal; even though Jazz might be able to stop them."
Giving a nod to the younger half-ghost, the two made there way away from the festival area and towards the portal leading to the human world.
"You two are back just in time Danny. I looked out the hotel window and saw mom and dad arriving." Jazz announced when she saw the two come out of the portal. De-transforming, the now black-haired 14-year-old turned around and pushed a button, turning the portal off. "So how did it all go?"
"We managed to find the girl, and she is coming for that O-bon thingie." Danny provided as he managed to stuff the portal back into the box. He didn't know how, but he managed to do it.
"He also got his butt kicked by a ghost rocker chick." Ranma said with his arms behind his head. An indignant 'hey' came from the smaller raven-haired boy just as the Fenton Parents announced their arrival.
"We're back" Maddie announced
"With fudge… lots and lots of fudge." Her husband provided as he appeared in view, holding an armload of fudge boxes. His eyes caught sight of the braided-haired boy and widened. "Ranma! How you doing boy?!" He shouted as he slapped him on the back, causing the martial artist to fall onto his face, and was then picked up and put back on his feet. "I think we may have figured out the whole ghost hunting issue."
"Really? What's that?" 'Jeez, the guy is crazy.'
"Why, we'll arrange things so you can come to America with us. Potential like yours should not be wasted, and what's better than being trained by the best ghost hunters in the very place that ghosts appear more often?"
"Remainin' here in Japan where I can deal with an already full plate?" Another pat on the back sent him forward
"That's a great spirit you have there Ranma. The answer is that nothing can be better than ghost hunting. It's the thrill of chasing them down, getting into a grueling battle, protecting people from harm, and defeating the ghost molecule by ectoplasmic molecule." A thought popped into his head. "Hey, isn't that ghost festival thingie I heard about coming up soon?"
"Yeah, why?" Ranma asked with a slight feeling of dread.
"Well imagine all the hostile ghosts that would probably end up coming through to wreck havoc. The Fentons will be there to capture the ghosts that do." Ranma's eyes widened
"Now wait just a…"
"That means we must practice with the area it will be, Jack." Maddie supplied.
"You're right! We should start doing it now, come on Maddie." The two ghost hunters left the room, and Ranma, feeling a slight dreading feeling, could only say one thing as it popped into his head.
"Damn…" Things were going to get a little more complicated at the O-bon.
Third chapter finished, whee!
I'd like to thank people who provided some ideas on certain things. Such as the suggestion for Gosunkugi and Kogane to appear, and thanks to some of the people who mentioned possible powers that Ranma's ghost form could have. I'm thinking of one or two more special abilities.
I feel I could have done a little more with this chapter though…. And maybe I need to take a small break. Doing too much, and I think my hand needs it.