Summary: A "Danny Phantom" version of "Daniel in the Lions Den" narrated completely by Vlad Masters. Rated T for violence. A Father/Son friendship fic. Folks, you are gonna love this! I hope…

"Daniel in the Lions Den"

How did it come to this?

Danny, my little badger, lying in some black pit bleeding and covered in filth. Why didn't I see it coming?

"Daniel!" I remember shouting as I flew down toward his lifeless form but of course he didn't move. I knelt down beside him in the darkness. He was lying on his back half naked, dry blood plastering his marred skin as fresh blood continued to seep out of deep cuts mingling with the dirt and mud that clothed him. Never taking my eyes off his face I quickly removed my cape and covered up his limp body. If all the bleeding didn't kill him the icy air in that dark hole surely would. That is, if he wasn't dead already…

I shuddered and forced the thought aside. Grabbing the boy by the shoulders I started to shake him. "Daniel wake up! Can you hear me! Daniel please! Wake up!" I didn't want to hurt him anymore than he already was but I was desperate and shook him harder, my voice roaring and echoing off the walls around us. "DANNY WAKE UP! YOU HAVE TO WAKE UP!"

Daniel's face… I'll never forget how it looked. It haunts me even now.

His face was pale, deathly pale, almost gray in color and covered in a cold sweat. There were no scratches on his face unlike his body and yet it was almost unrecognizable. His once soft cheeks were now sunken in and dark ovals shrouded his eyes. Even his lips were pale and at the corners of his mouth there was a white substance, the kind of substance that forms when water hasn't passed your lips for days.

For a moment in the midst of my shouting I thought I saw Daniel's eyes squeeze tighter as if he was starting to come to. I pulled the boy into my lap wrapping my cape around him tighter and continued urging him to wake. "Come on little badger, that's it. Open your eyes, please!"

Daniel's eyes squeezed even tighter before they slowly fluttered open. The pale blue of his irises were clouded and surrounded by tiny cracks of red. "Vlad…" His voice was barely a whisper and I strained to hear him.

"That's it Daniel, I'm right here." I said as reassuringly as I could standing up and lifting Daniel as easily as air. How had he become so thin? "I'm going to take you back to my mansion now. I'm going to help you, you're going to be alright. Just stay awake, stay with me Daniel." I pleaded as I floated up out of the hellish pit.

"Vlad…" Daniel whispered my name again just as weakly as before. "Sorry… sorry Vlad…" the boy struggled to say more but his voice faded, his eyes growing dim.

"Don't you dare close your eyes Daniel." I said threatening. I knew I was being harsh but, butter biscuits! I needed him to stay awake!

For the life of me I still can't figure out why he was apologizing to me. Perhaps he thought he wouldn't make it and he was apologizing for dying. That seems like Danny.

I can't suppress my sigh as I quietly stare at the motionless form lying in bed, IVs and wires and tubes slithering out of the blankets like snakes.

In the end I did get Daniel here in time to save him though for a moment I didn't think I would. After some time the little badger had gotten still and silent in my arms and wouldn't wake up no matter how much I begged and yelled and shook him. I don't think I've ever been so terrified…

I shook my head walking over to the unconscious boy. I pulled the blankets up higher past his shoulders and up to his chin as I've been doing for the past hour despite the fact he hasn't been moving. The blankets are dirty now but that's the least of my concern.

Of course I wanted to wash the boy immediately, clean all his cuts and wounds before they became infected but there was no time. I had to hook Daniel up to an IV and get some fluid into him before he…

I shuddered then mentally scolded myself. Everything is fine now. Daniel won't die and in time he'll heal. He always does. He has to.

I silently went into the bathroom connected to the bedroom I placed Daniel in and got a tub of warm water and a washcloth. Now that the boy is out of danger I should clean all those gashes, they're probably infected by now.

I set the tub of water on the dresser beside the bed before carefully peeling away the heavy blankets covering Daniel's stained and scarred body. It's just as bad as I remember. Dark purple bruises were here and there in large patches and cuts of all manner of brutality covered my little badger from his shoulders to his ankles. The gashes on his torso were larger and deeper while the ones on his hips and legs seemed to grow thinner and longer. In some places there wasn't any skin at all.

I could feel my eyes burning red with hatred. Whoever did this, however many were involved, I. Would. Kill. Them. Plain and simple. And if they were already dead, I would destroy them. Once I find the ones who did this to Daniel I'll leave nothing but their blood staining the walls and maybe their ashes lying on the floor. They would pay dearly for hurting my little badger like this.

I took in a deep breath trying to clam myself. I had to focus on Daniel right now. He needed me. I dipped the washcloth into the soothing water and ever so gently began cleaning Daniel's wounds. He would wince every now and then in his sleep as I would pass over a particularly harsh cut but remained silent the entire time.

Then, with Daniel cleaned up, I started applying some much needed ointment and medicine. The thin cuts were easy to clean but the large open wounds were still dirty and infected. I started at his chest working my way down to his stomach.

Good Heavens… I thought Daniel was skinny before, but now…

My little badger had always been on the smaller side. Thin perhaps, but gracefully portioned and healthy. But now every time his chest fell with a breath the skin would press painfully against his ribs revealing almost all of them.

As soon as he is well enough to sit up he will be eating. A LOT. I'll make sure of that.

Once all the medicine was applied I began pulling the blanket over Daniel only to watch him stretch and groan a bit painfully. It was the first time he had moved since I put him in bed.

"Daniel, are you alright? Can you hear me?" I asked gently brushing his bangs aside so I could see his eyes.

They opened slowly, baby blues still clouded and unsure. Daniel squinted at me for a long moment his vision most likely blurred. "V-Vlad?" He mumbled weakly.

"I'm right here little badger." I replied with a relieved smile. "I'm right here."

Daniel stared at me unsure if I was telling the truth or if I was just a figment of his imagination. After a long moment of studying me he tried reaching out to grab my suit. I let him and gently touched the hand that clung to me with all its strength.

But then the poor boy let out a tired sigh, his strength giving out and his hand falling instantly away. He laid there weakly, his eyes staring blankly ahead as he mumbled, "I'm cold."

I blinked realizing I didn't cover him up completely and quickly fixed my error raising the blanket up to his chin. "Thanks," Daniel attempted a smile but it didn't touch his eyes. "I-I… I lost, didn't I?"

I knew instantly what he was referring to but I thought it better not to speak about it. Not in his current condition at least.

"No my boy, you didn't lose." I said soothingly. "That was an unjust fight. In a fair fight you would've won."

Daniel's lips spilt into a grin as he tried to laugh but hardly any sound came out. "All the more reason for them not to fight fair." He replied in his airy laugh.

I frowned. That must have been what they said to him while they were beating him. Knowing Daniel he probably pointed out to those moronic brutes that it wasn't a fair fight and that's what they must have told him. Ingrates.

"It's over now Danny." I replied softly, my voice holding a sort of promise. "It's over and it won't happen again. Those men, those monsters won't get away with this. I'm going to find them and they will pay for what they've done to you, I swear." Daniel's eyes widened, my dangerous tone sobering him instantly. "Wait here." I said in a much softer tone. I turned away from him for just a second only to have this happen-

"NO!" Daniel pushed forward with the strength he didn't have to spare and grabbed onto my arm. "Don't go! You can't!"

"Daniel please!" I said trying to push him back into bed. "You can't get this excited! You're still recovering!"

"Then don't go! Please Vlad!" Daniel pleaded still trying to keep his grip on my sleeve.

I let out a small sigh. Of course the boy would be terrified to be left alone. After nearly being beaten to death and left to die in some bottomless tomb who wouldn't?

"Please Vlad." The boy repeated pleadingly. "Please don't go after them."

My eyes widened. Is that where he thought I was going?

"Y-You don't know what they can do." Daniel continued his grip on my arm tightening. "They'll surround you and t-then they'll, they'll…" I could see the panic rising in Daniel's eyes as the monitor beside his bed started beeping faster revealing his increasing heart rate.

I have to get him to calm down! His heart is beating too fast!

"Relax little badger," I cooed softly. "I'm not going to leave you." I assured him placing my hands on his shoulders carefully. The beeping started to slow down and I gently pushed on his shoulders till he was laying on his back once more. "I'm just going to get you something to eat. You're hungry aren't you?"

Daniel's stomach answered for him as if it understood me. I couldn't help but grin and even Daniel smiled. "Yeah, a little." He answered settling down in the blankets.

I brought the blanket up to his chin again before morphing into Plasmius. "I'll be right back." I promised before phasing through the walls to get to the kitchen. It was much faster than walking.

In the kitchen I quickly fixed Daniel some thick chicken soup and glass of orange juice setting both on a silver tray to take back to the bedroom. But not before adding a few extra vitamins to his soup. Calcium, iron, and potassium. Three things I'm sure the boy is lacking in right now.

When I reached the bedroom however the little badger was fast asleep again. I thought about waking him up since he really should get some food in his stomach but I just couldn't find the heart too. He'd been through so much, and he looked so peaceful…

Which is why I'm now sitting here an hour later still keeping an eye on Daniel should he awake or something go awry. His food is cold now of course but that can be easily solved with a microwave so bygones.

I'm sure by now you're wondering what all has happened to my poor little badger, hmm? Well, it's sort of a long story but one worth telling, that I can assure you.

Daniel got caught up in something much bigger than himself you see. He got so caught up in fact that he didn't realize what was happening until he found himself alone in the lions' very den. Surrounded and all alone.

Hmm, Daniel in the lions' den. A wonderful story of faith and miracle. A true story at that. A man unjustly thrown into a den of hungry lions by the king's jealous wise men for praying to God. And God protects Daniel through the night until he is pulled out of the lions' den the following morning completely unharmed. While the wise men who threw him there leave the city running for their lives from the king's wrath at almost killing his friend Daniel.

Danny knows this story too I'm sure. I'm sure he loves it. A story of justice and faith.

Unfortunately, my Daniel's story isn't as kind. For he wasn't thrown into the den of lions, he walked into it freely. He didn't pray for protection but instead rejected it believing he could do it all on his own.

Not that that's a valid excuse for why I didn't help him. To have pulled him out before it was too late.

A sigh drifts up from the bottom of my soul. I'll simply have to wait now. Wait till Daniel's well again before I can apologize and convince him never to go back to that place.

But while I wait, would you like to hear the story? I must warn you though, it's not for the faint of heart. But perhaps this one will have a miracle at the end as well…

Now, let me start at the beginning…

Yes I'm terrible for ending it here. Gosh, all these stories are popping into my head. How on earth am I going to keep up with all of them? !

I hope you like the beginning to this one so far. Feel free to review cause it means encouragement and smiles for me. ^-^ Dank you!