Disclaimer: The characters/events/setting, etc used herein are borrowed for entertainment purposes. The authors own nothing and make no profit from this story.

Authors note: This story is in actuality a genre study for class, wherein the authors explore the genre of fanfiction. We have emulated the Skeleton Creek style and created a short story, which you will hopefully enjoy!, which includes videos! Excuse the poor acting and low budget.

Spoilers: Some spoilers for book 2, Ghost in the machine. Set between book 2 and book 3.

Chapter 1

I'm starting a new journal. I had thought the worst of mine and Sarah's adventures were over with, after the whole ordeal at the dredge, but I had guessed wrong. At least this time I'm not worried that I might die. Not yet at any rate. At the moment, the threat seems fairly benign. That's the way I hope it stays.

After everything that had happened last year with the dredge and finding all of the gold hidden there, life hadn't gone back to normal, per say, but Sarah and I were allowed to see each other again and we weren't being hunted by what we had thought was a vengeful ghost. Things got better at school as well. I had always wanted to be part of the newspaper and Eddie Blake, the lead editor, came up to me and asked me personally to be his right hand man.

"Your blog is great man." He told me, leading me to the school newsroom with an arm around my shoulder. "I need that talent. You're going to be a great writer someday and I can say I helped you get your start."

Eddie is a pretty cool guy; he and I hit it off right away. He even helped Sarah start a video news blog for the paper with his influence at school. He had laughed when Sarah and I had thanked him, reminding us that as the head editor at the high school paper and a junior writer at the Skeleton Creek Irregular, it was his duty to find the best media makers. I like Eddie's style.

Not everything was as good though. Suddenly, Sarah and I were famous. Everyone in town knew who we were. They were stopping us in the streets to talk and ask us questions about the ghost and the gold. It didn't end, even in school. All the kids wanted to hear our story. Sadly, neither Sarah or I are great verbal story tellers. Eventually, after a lot of prodding, Sarah and I made a blog. I wrote the story and she uploaded her videos. That seemed to appease some of the crazies. But every day someone was asking for an interview. It drove us both nuts and finally my dad had to threaten to sue for harassment if people didn't leave us alone. That sure didn't help our image, but people took the hint and left us alone.

I had hoped that after finding the gold our adventures would be over, but I had been wrong. Yesterday I got an email from an unknown account with the weirdest letter I'd ever seen. It talked about Sarah and I, but it was written like a story. When I sent it to Sarah for her thoughts, she had told me, with no small bit of wonder, that it was fanfiction. Being a writer, I knew exactly what that was; I was a little abashed that I hadn't realized it myself. A fanfiction, a fan made story, about me and Sarah. That in itself is a little weird, seeing as most fanfiction I've read—yes, I admit I've perused the fanfiction archives a bit myself—revolve around fictional characters. And if they do involve real people, they're usually famous actors or historic figures, not someone of little importance like me. This is weird and the tone of the letter makes me nervous. What makes me even more nervous is what the letter says. I've printed out a copy of the letter to put here in my journal.

Ryan took Sarah by the wrist and led her through the hole in the side of the dredge, warning her to mind the jagged board edges. Carefully, they slipped into the dredge, the halo of their flashlight falling on the dusty floorboards. As they crept along the deserted hall, Ryan glanced up at the second story, flashes of his fall the previous year filling his mind.

Sarah's startled yelp drew his attention and he hurried over to where she was crouched on the ground. At first, he thought she was injured, but before he could say a thing, Sarah lifted her hand and waved for him to lean in closer.

"Here it is, Ryan." She whispered, fingers wrapping around a warped floorboard and pulling at it fiercely.

"That's impossible." Ryan muttered.

But even as he said it, Sarah yanked the board loose and plunged her hands into the vacant space beneath where the board had lain. A moment later, she stifled an excited gasp and pulled her hands free. Turning to Ryan, she lifted her palm and uncurled her fingers. Sitting there in her palm was a small square of gold, much smaller than the bricks that had been retrieved from the dredge before, but a valuable block of gold nonetheless. The two exchanged a wary glance. Now, if only the heroes could escape the dredge without being caught…

That last sentence doesn't make me feel too great. I can almost hear the author's sneer when he called Sarah and I heroes. I'm not sure what to make of this story, but I think I should consult Sarah again. I just hope this doesn't lead us on another life threatening escapade like last time.