Warnings: 1. This is the final chapter of this story. Sorry, but it's over. I could have divided it into two (it's 3000 words people!) but that would have been too painful.
2. This gets mushy. No, not DxS mushy. Well, yah there's that, but I don't need to warn you about that cuz, well, you like that. I'm talking about parents-son/daughter mushy. At some points I was even tempted to have tears in their eyes, but I decided against it. You can still imagine them, if you want.
3. There's a sneak peak at my next story at the bottom. NO! Don't look at it now! You might start reading the end of the fic and ruin it!
Alright, that's enough of that, enjoy . . .
Danny floated in the air at the exit of the jet, helping everyone with the big jump from the jet to the ground. Even Sam's mom accepted Danny's hand gratefully. Without realizing that everyone human was already off the jet, Danny offered his hand to the last person.
"Ew," Skulker said disdainfully looking at Danny's hand as if it was diseased.
Danny rolled his eyes and floated to the ground with Skulker right behind him.
"So is everybody okay?" Danny asked. He was answered with some nods and weak smiles. He just nodded back, unsure of what to do or say next.
"I'm not," Skulker put in.
Danny sighed and turned to face his foe.
"You owe me," Skulker said leaning in close to Danny's face, "more than you already did."
"Since when did I already owe you?" Danny questioned with a frown.
"Uh, when I got all the other ghosts to help you save the world," Skulker replied as if it was obvious.
"Oh puh-lease, you said you guys were only doing it to save yourselves."
"Let me keep the jet and we're even," Skulker suddenly reasoned.
"No!" Danny said in a that's-ridiculous! kind of voice.
"Well what are you going to do with it?"
"Give it back to whoever Walker stole it from."
"They won't want it now, even if you can get it to work for humans again."
"I don't care," Danny said sternly, "you're not getting it."
"Is the truce over now? Cuz I really feel like hitting you," Skulker growled, getting closer.
"I'm not going to fight you now, if that's what you're asking," Danny said, motioning with his eyes towards the people behind him.
"Well, what if I don't ask?" Skulker said his fingers wiggling as if they were suddenly going to transform into a weapon.
"Then, I do this," Danny said smiling as he reached his hand through Skulker's head and pulled out the little ghost.
"That is so not fair," Skulker said in his scrawny little voice as he hung from Danny's fingers.
"Sorry dude, but you were asking for it," Danny said still smiling. Then his voice turned serious, "now go home," he stated firmly.
"Alright, alright," the small ghost said and Danny let him go. He then disappeared back into the robot suit and immediately flew away.
Danny sighed and transformed into his human self as he turned around. He was getting that I'm-amazed-and-confused stare from everyone except Sam. He got it a lot when people saw him exchanging banter with his enemies. What confused most people, especially his parents, was how ghosts can be bitter rivals one second and then helpful buddies the next, like with the whole Christmas truce. He had tried to explain it to his parents before, but he could tell they still thought it was some kind of trap. They'd just have to observe for themselves when Christmas actually came. The whole now-we're-friends-now-we're-enemies thing was easy for Danny to accept, but he guessed that was his ghost-half's instincts kicking in. Anyways, he was really not enjoying being stared at so he just kinda stood there not saying anything, letting the silence sink in so that someone other than himself would speak.
"Well, thanks for having us?" Maddie finally spoke up.
Everyone chuckled a little at that, but then it went back to being quiet.
"Um kids?" Mrs. Manson suddenly began talking, her voice getting stronger as she went on, "would it be okay with you if us adults went inside and talked for a little while?"
"Oh," Danny said turning to check Sam's reaction. She did not look happy. Danny went ahead and answered with, "Sure, no problem," guessing Sam was not going to put her two-cents in. And if she did, it wouldn't be a very nice two-cents.
The adults filed inside Sam's house, leaving Danny and Sam outside and alone for practically the first time that night. Danny immediately went over to Sam and put his arms around her. She returned the hug, burying her face in his shoulder.
Maddie was the last one to enter the house. Mrs. Manson led them to the sitting room and they all sat down, Sam's parents on one couch, Jack and Maddie on the other couch catty-corner to it. At first no one knew what to say. Maddie fidgeted with her hands and then reached up to tuck a strand of hair behind her ear. When she did, her fingers brushed the Fenton Fone. This time she had forgotten all about them. She took it off and gently placed it on the table between the couches, thinking it was rude to have it in when someone was trying to have a serious conversation with you.
"This can't be easy for you either," Mrs. Manson finally began, "I mean, it's probably even harder for you than it is for us-"
"Sam, don't cry."
All the adults looked around in shock as Danny's voice floated through the room.
"I'm not crying." Now Sam's voice? The adults continued looking for the teens, but Maddie figured it out.
"Oh gosh," she whispered. Everyone in the room turned to her and she just pointed to the Fenton Fone on the table.
"I just," Sam's voice continued to come through the Fone as if she were in the room with them, "I just don't know what to do."
"Come on sit down," Danny said gently.
Outside, Danny led Sam to the front stoop and they sat down together on the first step.
"I mean, right now, they're probably in there discussing whether or not we'll be able to see eachother anymore and I feel so helpless," Sam vented, "it's not fair, we're not doing anything wrong!"
"I know," Danny soothed, putting his arm around Sam and rubbing her shoulder, "but come on Sam, do you really think that little of your parents? They're not gonna do something as rash as not letting us date."
Sam gave him a you-really-believe-that?-cuz-I-don't look. Danny returned it with a stop-being-overly-dramatic look. Sam sighed.
"They just don't understand," Sam said, "and they won't let us explain."
"Maybe they will," Danny countered.
"Hm, that's funny cuz I thought that in order to actually hear someone's side of a story you have to sit down and talk with them before you pass judgement."
"They are not in there passing judgement on us, Sam."
"Oh really, well only one way to find out now isn't there?" Sam looked straight at him and raised her eyebrow.
Danny smiled, "No, I'm not doing that."
Sam curled her lip down and gave him the sad eyes.
"Aw, you're so cute," Danny cooed. Sam looked hopeful for a second, "No," he stated again.
"But Danny . . ."
"We don't need to spy. There's nothing to worry about."
"How can you say that?! Have you already forgotten about Walker spilling about our so-called midnight meetings?"
"Oh right, that."
"Yah, that. And he made them sound so wrong too. I mean, first of all it's not like we plan them ahead of time or anything, it just happens. You call me or I call you and the next thing you know, we need to see eachother." Sam paused. "And it's not like we're doing what they think we're doing!"
"Making out . . . or worse. I mean, we're just talking! That's usually why we call eachother, one of us can't sleep and needs to talk it out. That's it and it's gonna be so unfair when they punish us just for that!"
There was another long pause. Sam rested her head on Danny's shoulder.
"Maybe," Danny spoke up, "maybe they'll consider that."
Sam looked up at him with yah-right eyes. Danny looked back at her and she could see how he genuinely thought that her parents could understand. She sighed.
"They don't understand, Danny."
"Understand what exactly?"
"This," she grabbed his hand.
"I'm sure they were in love once."
"No, it's more than that. The ride, remember? We're on the ride together. I was with you from the moment you got your powers, through almost every fight, the good and the not-so-good, through your highs and your lows, through watching you give it all up and then gain it all back. You told me you were okay with whatever happens next as long as I'm there for it and I really really want to be there for it."
The last words came out carefully as if Sam was doing all she could to hold back tears. She snuggled closer to Danny and he hugged her tighter. They sat in silence for a few seconds.
"Have you told them any of that?" Danny suddenly asked.
"What do you mean? I told you they won't understand."
"Yah, but have you actually told them how you became a part of this, that it wasn't just something I got you sucked into."
"Well no, but I'm sure they've heard it on the interviews."
"I think it would mean more coming from you."
Sam looked up to meet his eyes. He was being serious.
"I hate it when you sound all mature like that. I'm supposed to be the brains and you're the brawn."
"It's not about brains, Sam, it's about letting your parents in. I didn't for the longest time. But now that I have, it feels good."
"I know, I know, I get it, Mr. No-More-Secrets."
"I'm just saying, it's not as bad as you think it is."
Sam continued to look into his eyes with a trusting girlfriend smile. They leaned closer for a kiss but all of a sudden Danny's stomach growled and they both burst out laughing.
"Oh gosh, you must be starving after all that!" Sam said through her laughter.
"Don't worry about it," Danny said slightly embarrassed.
"No, you made me a promise and kept it the whole night. My only job was to feed you and I failed!"
They both kept laughing. It felt good to laugh after all the stress tonight had brought.
But then Sam stopped and looked at Danny and all the color seemed to drain from her face, her eyes growing wide. Danny noticed and became concerned.
"Sam, are you okay?" All the laughter was gone from his voice.
"Oh gosh," she gasped.
"What?" he said grabbing her by the shoulders.
She reached up and pulled off his Fenton Fone. They both looked at it, then up at eachother. Danny's eyes were now as big as Sam's. Without saying anything they both suddenly jumped up from the first step and ran up to the door. Sam showed no hesitation as she grabbed the door to her house and swung it open. She ran inside with Danny right on her heels. They made it to the sitting room and froze.
The parents froze too. The guilt was plastered on their faces. And as if that weren't enough proof there in the center of the table was Maddie's Fenton Fone. Sam removed the one from her ear and blew in it. The one on the table echoed the whooshing noise. Sam turned to Danny.
The parents watched baffled as the two teens seemed to engage in some kind of argument using only their eyes. Danny shook his head "no" a few times which seemed to make Sam angry. She even stamped her foot at one point. Then Danny finally nodded at one of the looks and Sam turned around.
"We've decided to hear your side of the story," Sam said reluctantly. She glanced back to Danny as if to say "Are you sure you won't agree to more drastic measures?" He just nodded again to acknowledge that she was doing the right thing, so she turned back to face the parents and gave them a start-talking! kind of look.
"It's my fault," Maddie said guiltily, "I took it off without turning it off. I should have known that we'd still be able to hear you if you had them on. I mean, after all, I designed them."
"No," Mrs. Manson cut in, "it's all of our faults. Any of us could have turned it off at any time but we didn't."
"It all happened so fast," Mr. Manson added.
"We're really sorry," Jack finished for them.
They all hung their heads in shame.
Sam sighed. Danny nudged her forward. She gave him a look but took the step forward so that she was closer to her parents.
"I'm sorry too," she said, "I'm sorry that I didn't have the guts to say any of that to your face. Danny's right. I shouldn't keep so much from you."
Her parents looked up in shock.
"No sweetie," Mrs. Manson said grabbing her daughter's hand, "obviously we're doing something wrong if you actually think that we would try to tear you and Danny apart when it's so clear that you two care about eachother a lot."
"I think Danny's proven that he's not going to let anything happen to you," Mr. Manson took over, "I think we can trust you two to watch out for eachother."
"So does that mean you're okay with this?" Sam asked pointing to the wrist-ray on her arm.
Her parents exchanged glances.
"As long as you're careful and don't take any stupid risks," Mr. Manson warned, "then yes you can . . . uh . . . do what you gotta do." He smiled.
A low stomach growl rumbled through the air.
Everyone looked at Danny.
"Um, actually," Mrs. Manson spoke up, "that was me."
The room practically exploded with laughter.
"So then I notice that Wulf's not helping us with the tank so I ask, 'Where's Wulf?' and we look over and he's got his tongue stuck on Walker!" Sam barely got the words out as she burst into a fit of giggles along with everyone else in the room.
"Sam was like, 'Ferocious yes, smart not so much' man, it was hilarious," Danny finished and everyone laughed again.
They were all gathered once again in the dining room. But instead of fine china, paper plates, napkins, and pizza boxes adorned the table. The guys had all removed their ties and Danny had his sleeves rolled up. Sam had changed into a t-shirt and plaid pajama pants. The whole atmosphere was much more laid back than it had been the whole night.
"So then what happened when you got your classmates back to camp?" Mr. Manson inquired.
Danny and Sam exchanged glances. They were sitting next to eachother now, instead of across like before.
"We told them it was all a dream," Danny stated matter-of-factly.
"And they believed you?" Maddie marveled.
Danny and Sam just nodded. They didn't feel like tonight was the right night to bring up how many times their parents had believed things they had said to cover up ghost attacks and what not.
"Well, I don't think I could eat another bite," Danny announced.
Everyone at the table agreed.
"If we keep you hear any longer, we'll have to feed you breakfast," Mr. Manson joked.
"Come on, we'll show you to the door," Mrs. Manson said getting up.
The entrance way was filled with lots of "Thank you"s and "That was certainly an interesting night" jokes as the adults actually hugged good-byes. Sam dragged Danny to the door and they went out onto the front stoop together.
They stood in the cool night air holding hands. Without any warning Sam threw her arms around Danny's neck and pulled him into a deep kiss.
"Wow," Danny said when she let go, "what was that for?"
"You know," she smiled, "just being you. This is gonna be weird, but-"
"You'll get used to it?"
"Yah, at least you better hope I do."
Danny just smiled. Sam gave him a peck on the cheek and opened the door to go inside and let the Fentons out.
"Oh and Sam," Danny called after her. She turned back.
"If you can't sleep tonight, don't call."
Sam acted mad and pulled the wrist-ray out of her pocket as if she was contemplating about using it on him. But then she smiled and gave a little wave good-bye.
Danny's parents came down the steps and they all headed towards the RV. When they were all buckled up inside, Maddie turned to Danny and put her hand on his shoulder.
"Danny, what you said to Sam was really sweet," she said giving his shoulder a loving squeeze, "you made us really proud tonight and not just because of the way you handled the ghosts."
"Though that was really awesome too," Jack put in. Maddie gave him a look and then turned back to Danny.
"I'm just glad you really feel like you can trust us now and tell us anything that's bothering you," she gave his shoulder another squeeze.
Danny smiled warmly at his mom.
"Like right now?"
"Something's bothering you?" Maddie asked instantly looking concerned.
"Um, yah," Danny hesitated, "that's my hurt arm."
"What? Oh! Oh my gosh! I'm so sorry," Maddie said releasing her grip.
"It's cool, Mom," Danny said laughing it off, "I've had worse."
"Do tell," Maddie said sarcastically.
"No, I mean," Danny stammered.
"Now young man, you did promise that you would tell us everything," Maddie started fake lecturing.
"Man, I am never making another promise for as long as I live," Danny vowed as he slunk down in his seat for the rest of the ride home.
Well, there ya go. Perhaps there will be a sequel, another dinner party? But not now. For there are other stories to be written! Sneak peak at what I'm gonna write next:
Title: Rehabilitating Vlad (may change)
Plot: Vlad's returned to earth! But not exactly by choice. The world wants to toss him in prison and throw away the key. But Danny speaks up. He remembers that old, decrepit future Vlad that wished for a second chance and helped him defeat his evil puss-pack self. Will the world let Danny give Vlad a second chance? Will Vlad accept the second chance? Well, let's just say there's therapy, a make-over, and go-carts involved. ;)
Um stuff: more DxS fluff, plus Tucker and Jazz will actually be in this one, and I can't forget to mention, Vlad and Danny bonding!
If you enjoy Vlad being evil, you might wanna skip this one, sorry.
Thanks again to all my reviewers, people who made me and/or the story a favorite, and people who requested alerts on me and/or the story! Without you guys I might not have kept going! It might be a while till I get this next story up and running but I promise it will come eventually. Bye for now:)