Oops, sorry. This is not a new chapter. I was going through my files and realized that I missed a chapter (Picture, Picture, on the Wall) when I reposted this as a its own story.

Disclaimer: I do not own Danny Phantom


Carpool

Danny stretched and tried to relieve the tension in his muscles but his nerves seemed to be like stretched wire. It was so …aggravating.

His parent's Ecto Detector worked as advertized but that didn't stop the ghost from finding other ways of harassing humans.

Add to that, the Box Ghost seemed to make it his personal mission to jump out at odd moments and hassle him about the merchandise.

But the real icing on the cake was that they were laying it at Danny Phantom's feet after all if there was trouble with ghosts, he was supposed to fix it.

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The honking of a horn practically made him jump two feet in the ear.

Danny spun to see a black sedan pull up to the curb next to him. Through the window he could see Tucker and his driver exchanging high fives.

"Sheesh Tuck, don't to do that," he snapped.

"You must have sensitive hearing," the driver said as he politely opened the door for Danny.

"I thought you might want a ride since, I'm going your way," Tucker grinned.

It sounded friendly but, Danny knew it was official business since Tucker was being chauffeured in the official Mayor's car.

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Danny leaned against the opened door but didn't enter. "Are you gonna nag me about why I haven't caught the ghost, too?"

His friend's bitter tone made Tucker revise what he was going to say.

"I'm actually here to check on the instillation of your parents' equipment."

"Right. And it has nothing to do with Dross and Brass putting pressure on you?" he challenged.

"They're understandably upset; the ghost attacked their office, overshadowed them and made them one: say that they didn't believe in ghosts, two: call the tourists 'gullible imbeciles' and three: had them confess to crimes of fraud.

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"Can't you arrest them for something?"

Tucker gave him a flat stare. "You know I can't do that, Danny. Anything said and done under the influence of overshadowing is inadmissible in court. It's the reason you were acquitted for the robbing of those jewelry stores when you were controlled by Freakshow. You also used it in your defense when you were accused of kidnapping the mayor."

Danny blew out his breath. "I don't like them."

"That may be true, but not even Danny Phantom can have someone arrested on those grounds," Tucker said.

"Can you at least look into it?"

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"I talked to the DA but he said that they can't prosecute."

Danny scowled.

"Danny, outside of Amity Park, belief in ghosts is relatively new. I'm sure you remember why we avoided discussing your parents' profession in school. Brass and Dross claim they were providing entertainment that was not to be taken any more seriously than when a magician does 'magic'. "

Danny looked away and stuffed his pockets. "Everyone knows my parents aren't a bunch of crack pots now.

"I wouldn't go so far as to say that," Tucker said and grinned when Danny couldn't help cracking a smile.

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"Speaking of your parents, how has the installation of the special Fenton tech going? Did the Ecto Detecto work?"

Danny mumbled something indistinct.

"Sorry Danny, I couldn't catch that," Tucker asked him to repeat it.

"Yes," he spoke a bit louder. "It works. It works a bit too well."

Tucker hated it when he had to pry information from Danny bit by bit. "And…?"

Danny looked at his feet and rubbed the back of his neck. "And it detected the ghost when it tried to overshadow someone on the tour." Danny paused. "It also detected me. In my human form."

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"Stop laughing, Tucker"

"Stop being a grouch and get in," Tucker told him.

"My parents didn't have time to calibrate it not to recognize me."

"How about the specially modified ghost shields?"

Danny shrugged, "Last I heard they were still working on them but I haven't seen them since breakfast, so you'll have to ask them."

"That's what I had in mind," Tucker signaled the driver, "Let's go."

Danny was just pulling the door closed when a hand reached out to stop him. The hand forced the door open.

"Thanks for the ride, Tucker. Move over Fentoid."

It was Dash.

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Dash looked around the car. "I guess being mayor has its perks. Nice use of city funds."

"If you're so civic minded, feel free to walk. Where's your car, Dash?" Danny asked.

"In the shop. You wouldn't need a driver if either of you two losers had your driver's license," he smirked.

"Dash, I only use the car for official business," Tucker protested. The edge in his voice said he had hit some sore spots. "So do you enjoy working for me?"

"I don't work for you. Lancer assigned the detention," Dash protested.

"Just keep telling yourself that," Tucker smirked.

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"Actually, speaking of perks, I like being here just fine," Dash grinned.

Danny tried ignoring the football player but it did no good.

"It's been a great way of picking up chicks. Of course you wouldn't know anything about that, would you Fento-lame-o," Dash continued.

"There's a name for people that do that job professionally," Danny muttered.

"I know," Dash grinned expansively, "it's called being lucky."

Danny rolled his eyes but kept his comments to himself.

"Of course that's not the only perk. The best part is I get a front row seat at the best ghost fights in town."

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Speaking of ghost fights, if you want to make money, you should sell tickets," Dash suggested.

"Ghost fights are not a spectator sport," Danny said with more heat than he intended. Dash may think it was all in fun but Danny knew the risks he took. "It's serious. People could get hurt."

"Sheesh Fentbutt, take it easy," Dash said dismissively, "I know your parents are supposed to catch that ghost but if you really want someone competent to take care of a ghost problem, they should just let Phantom do it."

Danny didn't know whether to be complimented or insulted.

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"Of course at the moment, neither of them have managed to catch the ghost," Tucker put in.

"So why is that?" Dash asked.

Danny and Tucker exchanged looks. "Part of the problem is that the ghost is so unpredictable. It pops up and then disappears before ... anyone can get there. Even with the special equipment my parents are installing, it's going to be next to impossible to set a trap unless we can get some idea of when and where it's going to show up."

"Well, that's strange," Dash mused, "He's shown up almost every time I've been here."

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The driver pulled into a driveway in front of a large house.

"I still think you should sell tickets," Dash said cheerfully as he opened the door, "Thanks for the lift, I might let you off of a locker-cramming tomorrow."

Danny just goggled after him. "Did he just say that…?"

"I know I can't believe it. I never thought he'd let you off, especially since he blames you for getting stuck with community service. He must really mean it about enjoying it."

"Not that, Tucker!" Danny exclaimed, "If the ghost appears when Dash does, we can use Dash as bait!"


A sincere apology to my kind and patient readers for the long delay in this chapter. I am very grateful for your support.