Phantom Task

Chapter 1

"{Dialogue}"- Spoken in English

"Dialogue"- Spoken in Japanese (or other foreign language, you'll know)

[Bold Text]- IS Frame/model

[Text]- IS term or Electronic Message

'Italics text'- Personal thoughts

Danny Fenton's grin stretched across his face. Three years had passed since the 'Disasteroid' incident had made him a world famous hero, high school was over, and in the next few weeks he was scheduled to start training to be an astronaut. Nothing could ruin his day.

Except maybe a spontaneous ghost portal in his path as he flew over Amity Park City Hall. Had his eyes been open, he could have avoided it but they were closed in a relaxed sigh. He did notice the sudden change of light as he passed through it, though. Amity Park had been mid-afternoon, if a bit overcast, so the change to darkness was shocking. Stopping mid-air, Danny turned back to see the green, glowing portal, before shooting at it in an attempt to return from wherever he was, before the natural portal vanished. Unfortunately, the oval dissipated before Danny could fly through it.

"{Great,}" Danny huffed as he floated in the air, "{Where exactly am I?}"

Concentrating ecto-energy into his hand, he formed a glowing orb and illuminated his surroundings with a green light. He discovered that he was, in fact, inside what appeared to be a storeroom. It was larger than the gymnasium at Amity High, rivaling the 'secret' meat locker under the school. About thirty feet below him, dozens of identical objects were lined up in a grid-like fashion.

"{What are those?}" Danny mused aloud, descending to get a better look.

As he approached, the half-ghost realized that the objects were as tall as the Fenton RV and shaped vaguely like the Exo-suit, lacking a torso to connect the arms and legs. Round openings on each appendage appeared to be large enough for his limbs to fit in.

"{Just one try, then I'll find out where I am and how to get back,}" Danny finally gave in to the curiousity of these green armors, reverting to human form. Visibly, only the colors of his clothes, hair, and eyes changed. Physiologically though, he changed from a primarily ectoplasm-based life form to a carbon-based life form. The Exo-suit that he'd fought Pariah Dark in wouldn't initially to his ghost form, so neither would these… armors Danny called them.

The young man slid his legs into the corresponding sockets in the armor followed by the arms. The fit was snug. Nothing happened. "{Oh well,}" he sighed in anticlimax and began to pull out.


Suddenly Danny's senses were flooded with information and the armor rose slightly off of the ground.

Chifuyu Orimura shot from her bed reflexively as an alarm went off. She checked the clock. 0217 hours. She checked the device blaring the alarm, just as probably every other IS Academy staff member was doing the same

[Unauthorized Activation of Academy IS During Curfew Hours]

With a grimace the woman rapidly changed out of sleepwear and bolted out of the door. 'None of the proximity alarms were tripped. I will know just who they think they are.'

Danny was immensely enjoying himself as he flew around the room. Though there were no windows to allow light to enter, the 'armor' increased not only his night vision to the point that the darkness was a non-issue, but also his peripheral vision to see in all directions without turning his head. The increased awareness was dizzyingly confusing at first but within minutes he recovered and took to flying around.

"{Okay, that's enough,}" he admitted after five minutes of fun, "{Time to leave.}" But he didn't know how to remove the 'armor'. His limbs were held captive. Moments later, characters flashed across the display, "{Is that Japanese? Darn it I can't read Japanese! English. Give me English.}"

The display, seemingly following his command, switched to the letters and words Danny could read.

[Academy Anti-Theft Protocol: Activated. Rendering Pilot Unconscious.]

"What?" Danny managed to exclaim just before all of his nerves were over-stimulated and he passed out. Without his conscious guiding it, the armor slowly descended to the floor.

Chifuyu entered the IS hanger, leading three other adults, to detain the intruder. When she laid eyes on Danny in the [Uchigane], her gaze narrowed.

"A boy?" Maya Yamada, Chifuyu's assistant teacher, asked.

Danny awoke handcuffed to a table. He looked around finding the white room to be featureless save for the door, his seat and the table. Though he retained his clothes, he felt that his pockets were empty and the familiar weight of the Fenton Thermos 2.0 was absent from his hip. 'Find stuff, get out, get directions, get home,' Danny checked off mentally. Just as he was about to phase out of his shackles, the door opened.

The woman who walked in had distinctively Asian features, which made sense if the characters he'd been unable to read earlier were Japanese. She was tall, slim, and dressed in a black skirt, something a teacher might wear. Her hazel eyes narrowed into a piercing glare.

"{Look who's finally awake,}" she spoke in fluent English, "{I just got off the line with a US official and 'Daniel Olsen Fenton' doesn't exist,}" she slid Danny's wallet across the table to him, his driver's license falling out, "{So the question is who you really are. Not only that, but who you're affiliated with, why you were stealing an IS, and how you activated it.}"

"{Who are you? Where am I? What's an—}" he started but was cut off as the woman slammed his head down to the table.

"{I'm asking the questions here,}" she threatened, "{Who sent you? Phantom Task?}"

"{I have a task named for me?}" Danny asked awed. The woman's glare sharpened, "{What, how could you not know about me?}" he said defensively, "{Danny Phantom, as in the guy who saved the Earth from the Disasteroid. There's a statue of me in every capital on the planet.}"

The woman glared at him for a moment before leaving a parting word, {"You'll talk eventually. You're a captive of the Infinite Stratos Academy. You won't be leaving unless we release you. Anything you want to say now?"}

"{Just two,}" Danny said, leaning back in his seat with his hands behind his head, "{Get better handcuffs, and you forgot the part about doing 'lots of painful experiments' to me.}"

Chifuyu watched the footage again, scowling.

"Just two…"

"There!" she ordered. Maya paused it. "Zoom in on the intruder's wrists."

"Yes," Maya answered and did so. As the image focused she gasped.

Chifuyu's scowl deepened. At that moment the screen displayed an image of self-titled 'Danny's' wrists passed halfway through the handcuffs. 'Another super soldier? If so, who is he with? And what's the importance of this?' she gripped the metal cylinder taken off of the intruder.

With the break-in that morning, classes at the Academy were suspended for the day. That meant a free day, except for one Ichika Orimura. Each of the girls: Houki, Cecilia, Rin, Charl, and Laura all wanted to share his time. An agreement was reached to eat lunch together on the roof. Naturally, the conversation shifted to the reason classes were canceled for the day.

"Whatever it is that happened," Ichika said, "It's got Chifuyu-nee nervous. Three times today, she's come by to check up on me."

"That is unsurprising of Instructor," Laura stated, "Sisters do check up on their younger siblings."

"It has been every hour on the hour, Bodewig-san," Cecilia argued, "Orimura-sensei has never done that."

"Speaking of…" Charlotte added, looking beyond Ichika.

"Bodewig, Orimura," Chifuyu approached the group, a strange metal cylinder in her hand, "I need you two to come with me."

"But what about us," Rin complained.

"It's about the disturbance this morning, isn't it, Orimura-sensei? What happened?" Houki asked

Chifuyu looked at her students critically for a moment and sighed, "You'll all try to get involved anyway, so I might as well tell you, but it doesn't go beyond any of you,"

"Understood, sensei," they all said in unison.

Chifuyu sighed again, "This morning at 0217 hours, an intruder activated one of the Academy's Training IS. None of the proximity tripwires were set off. After capture, the US government denied his existence and he's been kept in an interrogation cell ever since."

"Wait, wait, wait," Ichika spoke up, "He?"

"Yes, he!" Chifuyu confirmed, "He claims his identity as Danny Phantom…"

"Someone say my name?" Danny said in halting Japanese, stepping out from behind Chifuyu, as his ghost half. 'Thank you, Tucker, for insisting on learning Japanese. And thank you Cram-tastic 5000 for making it possible.'

At his sister's sudden rigid posture, Ichika reflexively called [Byakushiki] mentally and pointed his weapon at the strange young man as the white armor materialized. Laura had the same reflex, donning [Schwarzer Regen] simultaneously. Rin in her [ShenLong], along with Charlotte in [Raphael-Revive Custom II], Houki in [Akatsubaki], and Cecilia in her [Blue Tears], followed suit within the following seconds with varying difficulty. "Who are you?" Ichika demanded.

Seeing the different types of armor materialize on the group startled Danny, though excited him too. "{Cool, where can I get one of those?}" he asked in English with awe, seemingly indifferent to the numerous weapons directed at him.

Chifuyu used his distraction to put some distance between herself and the intruder who had escaped, changed appearance, and snuck up on her, without her being notified and no triggered alarms.

"Orimura-sensei," Yamada's voice called through the comlink in Chifuyu's ear, "I'm sorry, I had to use the bathroom so I left the observation room. I was only gone for three minutes and when I got back, the boy was gone."

"Don't worry, Yamada-sensei," Chifuyu replied, "He's not gotten far, he's right in front of me." Facing back at the intruder, "How did you get out of that cell? Escaping shackles is one thing, but that room has walls of concrete and steel over a meter thick."

Danny apparently remembered where he was, shaking his head rapidly, before turning to Chifuyu, "Um, it wasn't that hard. You should've lined it with {Ecto-ranium} if you wanted to hold me."

"{Ecto-what?}" Cecilia exclaimed, dropping back to English in surprise, "{And what did you mean, '{where do I get one of those?}' These are IS, something even a country bumpkin should be aware of, which only females can pilot so it would not do you any benefit to locate one.}"

Immediately, Danny reached down to pat his groin before sighing in relieve, "{…Still there,}" he paused looking at Ichika, who was holding a blade at him, "{But isn't he male, too?}" then he continued, "{What's going on here? You,}" he pointed to Cecilia, "{Sound British by accent. The ones in orange and black also look European but everyone else looks Asian and speaks Japanese. You don't know what Ecto-ranium is? It's the isotope found in all anti-ghost devices—}"

"Anti-ghost devices?" Chifuyu repeated slowly in Japanese, cutting Danny off, drawing a double take from those present except Cecilia, Danny, and Laura, "Ghosts don't exist, neither does your 'Ecto-ranium'," she bluffed as her mind raced at what had been just said, 'Ghosts? Impossible, those are just fairy tales. Stories cooked up by the superstitious.'

"Ghosts do exist," Danny argued, "I fight them almost daily. Lady, you're even holding the thing I catch them in," he pointed at the Fenton Thermos Ver 2.0 that Chifuyu was holding.

Chifuyu glanced down at the metal tube that had been confiscated from 'Danny' then back to the young man, "How do I know that this isn't some explosive designed to cripple the Academy?"

Danny sighed, "It's called the 'Fenton Thermos Ver 2.0'. Designed by Jack and Madeline Fenton, my parents, built by them, funded by the 'Guys in White' section of the US government. Remove the lid and you'll find it hollow. I could show you—"

"No, I'll do it," Chifuyu declared.

"But Sis/Instructor/Sensei," the group protested.

"Quiet, and keep an eye on him" Chifuyu shouted, gripping the thermos lid. Slowly, she twisted until it came off. Cautiously peeking inside, as if it were the barrel of a gun, she saw the inside bare, save for circuitry running through the inner walls.

She heard them gasp and she shot a glance at the intruder. By this point, she had been starting to believe this 'Danny', at least that he believed that he was telling the truth. Having interrogated a lot of spies over the past few years had given her a good grasp of reading non-verbals and she could confidently claim that she could read truth or deception from a total stranger accurately 90% of the time. That statistic jumped to 97% accuracy with two weeks of interaction. Between her years as a combat pilot and teaching teenage girls, she was certain that she'd 'seen it all'. She was also shocked at what she saw.

Around Danny a ring of light appeared, similar to a halo, a meter in diameter, at his midsection with a 'hiss'. The ring separated into two, traveling vertically across his body, with a soft hum. As the rings passed, the black jumpsuit was replaced with jeans, a white T-shirt, and red converses. As the top ring went over his face, his green irises returned to blue and his white hair became black again.

Danny Fenton reached out toward Chifuyu, causing the relaxed weapons to be trained upon him again, "Can I have that back now? I'd rather not be sucked into it again or have you accidentally let something out."

"L-Let something out?" Rin asked nervously.

Chifuyu had noticed the red buttons on the side and accidently nudged one. Light shot out of the open end for a second before fading with no other effects. Danny stood frozen reaching towards her with horror on his face. Cecilia and Laura were looking at her too. Ichika, Houki, Rin, and Charlotte were all looking up into the air, their gazes following something.

Quickly recovering from his shock, Danny raced to Chifuyu and grabbed the thermos, panicked. She relinquished it without a struggle, assuming he had a good reason to panic. As he scanned down the thermos, Chifuyu looked back at her students. Cecilia had noticed Ichika staring into the sky and tried to follow his gaze but apparently couldn't. Chifuyu couldn't see what they were watching either.

"Ichika!" she barked at her younger brother, "What are you looking at?"

"You can't see it?" Ichika asked in amazement, "It appeared right out of the thermos…"

"Young boy, green hair, buck tooth, dressed like a cowboy, skeleton horse?" Danny asked looking up from the thermos, exasperation in his voice. Blue mist wafted from his lips and nostrels.

"Almost," Charlotte answered, "He seems to be dressed like an aviator and his biplane is made of bones."

Danny swore, his eyes scanning the sky randomly.

"What's wrong?" Chifuyu said curtly.

"You let out {Youngblood}, Lady," Danny sardonically replied, "The one ghost impossible for me to see anymore. Well at least someone can see him."

"What's so special about this 'ghost'?" Laura stated, "I see nothing. Du bist verrückt."

"{Youngblood}," Danny emphasized, "Only kids and teens can see him. Once ya reach adulthood, or think of yourself as one, he becomes invisible."

There were some screams from the courtyard on the ground as a gaggle of girls scattered, covering their heads.

"I can't take this," Ichika declared flying towards the courtyard, "This ghost, or whatever is done."

Houki and Rin followed immediately after, but before Charlotte could as well, she felt a tug on her IS arm. She saw Danny holding it, once again in his black-and-white jumpsuit.

"Excuse me Miss..."

"Dunois," she answered, "Charlotte Dunois."

"Well, Miss Dunois, could you please describe the fight for me?"

Ichika gripped the [Yukihira] as he raced towards the skeletal biplane. With the superior speed of [Byakushiki], he nearly overshot his target. The boy in the cockpit cackled, rolling to the left, avoiding Ichika's first swing.

"{Do a barrel roll,}" the boy shouted happily.

Rin swung down from above, attempting to cleave the vehicle in two. An instant before impact, the plane and boy became translucent and Rin's attack passed through harmlessly. "What the Hell?" the Chinese girl growled.

"Yeah, he went intangible," Danny answered as Charlotte described the failed attack, "Basic ghost ability."

"Is it an automatic response?" she posed, drawing a [Vent] .55 caliber Semi-automatic assault rifle from an equalizer, "Or does require conscious effort?" She sighted down the scope towards the plane.

"That is so cool," Danny commented at the materialization of the weapon. The noise of a throat being cleared snapped him out of it, "Yes, it's a conscious effort…usually."

"What?" Charlotte queried, involuntarily pulling the trigger. The [Vent] roared. Without the proper aim and lead, the bullet broke off the vertical tailfin. The boy leaned out of his pilot seat to shout angrily at her. Charlotte sighed and readied another shot.

"Allow me to try, Charlotte-san," Cecilia called, readying [Blue Pierce], "Sniping is my specialty. Though, I'll need your observations."

"{Sniping…blind. I can so see this working}," Danny deadpanned.

"{Shut up!}" Cecilia barked, "Charlotte, bearing please."

"Distance: 146 meters; Angle of elevation: 2 degrees…"

Ichika watched as his shield energy dropped a little more. The boy was surprisingly difficult to land a hit on. The close range strikes were passed harmlessly through and his one-off abilities were dodged. Rin and Houki were having similar problems. The boy wasn't fighting back for the most part, seemingly playing a game of 'Tag' where everyone else was 'IT'.

Suddenly a blue beam bore through the engine of the plane, causing it to slow. The pilot screamed and yelled angrily before stopping the plane in mid-air to face Ichika.

"Direct hit to engine," Charlotte announced, "It's slowing but…not falling?"

"Thanks girls, but now it's my turn," Danny said, launching himself in the direction where Ichika, Houki, and Rin hovered in a circle around supposedly Youngblood.

"Alright," Cecilia professed, "That was rather exciting." Everyone was back on the roof, sitting in a circle, except Chifuyu, who was monitoring them, Danny specifically. All IS were on standby and Danny was in human form. Youngblood had since been captured.

"So ghosts really exist," Laura queried. She had not seen the ghost, thus remained skeptical.

"Sure," Danny set the thermos mid circle, "there's a different ghost to show than {Youngbutt}," the others tensed as Danny pressed the top red button on the side.

After the light funneling out dissipated, they were greeted with the sight of a portly, pale-blue skinned figure, wearing a grey shirt under overalls and sporting a grey beanie. The hunched over figure paused momentarily before declaring, "{I AM THE BOX GHOST! MASTER OF ALL THINGS CARDBOARD AND SQUARE—}"

"{BEWARE!}" Danny cut him off, firing a blue beam from a fingertip. Box Ghost was encased in a block of ice, which promptly dropped, nearly crushing the thermos. "That proof enough?" he asked as he drew the helpless spirit back into his containment device.

"I am still curious as to what you are. You look human, but have abilities not unlike the ghosts. In stories: flight, immateriality, invisibility," Cecilia listed, before hesitatingly touching his hand, "Also your flesh is warm and you have a pulse. What exactly are you, Daniel?"

"I'm a halfa. Half-human, half-ghost."

There was a silence as his audience attempted to string the events leading to such a lifeform. "Lab accident, long story short, my DNA got spliced with ghost DNA."

"That doesn't explain how you got here," Chifuyu questioned.

"No idea, best guess is a natural ghost portal that appears from time to time."

"Can't you take it back?"

"Lady, natural ghost portals appear randomly and last for a few minutes at most. That portal is long gone."

"So, we're stuck with you. Great. No papers, no nothing."

"Um, Sis?"

"It's Orimura-sensei," Chifuyu corrected her brother with a strike.

"O-Orimura-sensei, I have an idea."

The next day, classes resumed as usual with one exception.

"Class," Yamada announced, "Today we have another transfer student joining our class." She turned to the door expectantly. And waited. "Um Fenton-san?"

"{Let's get this over with}," Danny mumbled to himself before entering. The class was silent as he walked to a position next to the petite built teacher. "Hi, I'm Daniel Fenton from America. I go by Danny, though."

As the class erupted with questions from the other students, one thought was racing through his mind, 'Sam and Tucker are going to kill me.'

(German): Du bist verrückt- You are mad/insane/crazy

Author's Notes

Well it's nice to get back to writing. Generally Wednesday's are my day of the week to write and I got this idea in my head that was too cool (personally) to pass up. Sorry to those who were hoping I'd update Zero's Dog or Needless and Vampire.

To those who may think giving Danny IS piloting abilities or his presence period holds little water, I shall point you towards some Danny Phantom episodes, which you should watch anyway.

First his presence in the world of IS: Episode 42- Infinite Realms states that ghost portals occur naturally and randomly. The portals can transcend time and space, so I don't think dimensions is too big a leap.

Second, his piloting abilities. Episode 12- Teacher of the Year has Danny enter his computer and overshadow/possess his avatar in an online RPG. Then there's Technus, Ghost Master of Technology.

The reason that Danny, Laura, Cecilia, and Chifuyu cannot see Youngblood is mainly because of outlook. Danny(age 18) knows that Youngblood can only be perceived by non-adults but isn't childish enough to see him anymore. Laura was born and raised to be a supersoldier, childhood has no meaning for her. Cecilia has had to fend off adults grabbing for her family's fortune since age twelve, when she was orphaned, childhood was something she had to mature out of. Chifuyu is an adult and filled the roll of a parent to Ichika. On a related note, Tabane Shinonono likely could see Youngblood.

Thanks for reading. Please review.