Disclaimer: I don't own Danny Phantom.
The rest of Danny's day actually went pretty well. Because he finally made up with Sam, he was a lot happier and calmer. He still had to wonder if they were considered a couple though. Ugh, relationships are so confusing! Of course this meant that Tucker would win the bet at school since Danny and Sam were dating. That is, if the bet even existed in this timeline. He knew Tucker was holding bets to see how long it would take Danny and Sam to finally realize their love for one another", but in this timeline they only really met last week. Could Tucker really work that fast?
Well yes actually he could. He did release a potentially dangerous ghost back into Amity Park for one of his hare brained ideas, something Danny was still noticeably peeved about. Though, he did have to wonder if he was more angry at Tucker for doing it, or himself for not only allowing it to continue, but actually helping his friend along with it. He trusted Tucker, right? Right?! Ignoring the time the techno-geek almost let Technus take over the internet and the other time he used Desiree to become a half ghost himself and tried to kill Danny, he was a dependable guy. Sadly, those two events couldn't be overlooked so easily.
Danny took his tenth lap around Amity Park, trying to find any ghost he could. Why was it that when he needed a ghost, they finally decided to take a break and not come out? How was he supposed to bring Tucker a ghost if none would show up?
He considered going into the Ghost Zone and capturing a weak ghost, but decided against it. He didn't want to be attacked by Walker or the likes. It also didn't feel right taking a ghost from his home in order to do this. At least when they were captured over Amity Park it proved they didn't have any good intentions. Danny started scanning all around the town, still no spotting even a single ghost.
"They're just doing this to annoy me, aren't they?" Danny wondered aloud. Suddenly a blue wisp of air escaped Danny's mouth and he changed into a more defensive stance in the air. "Finally! Wow, this is the first time I've ever been happy that my ghost sense has gone off." Danny did another scan all around him, but still came up with nothing. This didn't stop his ghost sense from going off once again. "Hmm, maybe my sense is just acting up."
"Caw!" came the cries of an eagle as it slammed into Danny back from above. The halfa quickly regained his balance mid air and reached for his thermos.
"Oh great, a bird." The bird circled around Danny and charged at him with his peak. The halfa just looked at the bird with a look of boredom and activated his thermos. "I swear these animal ghosts just do the same thing. Can't they change it up a bit?" he asked while watching the bird get sucked into the thermos by its bluish white vortex.
"Well, I still got a ghost, so I guess everything's okay." Looking around once more for anything out of the ordinary, Danny strapped the thermos around his back once again and set off for Tucker's house. Right now, he just wanted to get this whole "plan" over with.
In the dark confines of his room sat a lone techno-geek as he furiously pounded on his keyboard. "Almost there." he spoke as he watched the progress bar on his computer screen fill up. He glanced back at the small device currently wired to the computer and back at the progress bar. "Soon everything will be ready and I can keep looking for Desiree."
Tucker wouldn't admit it but he had spent his entire day just trying to create and program a tracking device that would be able to be worn by any ghost even when intangible. Finding all the parts wasn't easy, and it did take a pretty penny out of his savings. He did get to learn about some interesting material though. For instance, he learned about a completely natural type of mineral that's able to restrict a ghost's powers or give them a shock. A bit cruel if you asked him, but it was the only material he could find given the time. Wait. Since he decided these himself, these are considered his own inventions. That means he gets to name them! Sweet, he always wanted to stick his name onto something.
The Foley Finder!
No, something was off. Didn't the Fenton's already use that word in one of their inventions? What other 'F' word would work? Dang it. Why did his last name have to start with the same letter as the Fenton's? Well there was no rule that said he had to use his last name. Maybe he should just stick with his first. Either way his name was getting on his invention. How about Tucker Tracker? It had a nice ring to it and if anyone searched the name, he would come up as the inventor, not some other Tucker.
As new ideas continued to pop up into Tucker's mind, a certain halfa phased through his ceiling and appeared from behind as a human. "Tuck, what are you doing?" Danny asked his mumbling friend.
"Ah!" the techno-geek yelped before falling out of his chair and onto the floor. Danny couldn't hold back his laughter as he watched his friend lie on the floor, something that was starting to annoy Tucker. "What do you want, Danny?" Tucker asked after finally regaining his composure and standing up.
The halfa gave the thermos in his hand a jiggle and replied, "Just brought the ghost you wanted. Are you ready to release it?" Tucker checked the progress on his computer before disconnecting the device he was working on and showing it to Danny.
"I present to you the Tucker Tracker."
"Tucker Tracker?" Danny repeated. "Did you really have to add your name to it?"
"I invented it, so yeah. I don't see a problem since you parents do it all the time." Danny tried to come up with a proper come back, but found that he had no figurative ground to stand on.
"Fine, whatever. Does it work?"
"Yep, it should stick to the ghost like glue."
"Ghosts can get out of glue."
"Then ectoranium glue." Danny noticed the green tint to the tracker and quickly grew wary of it, comparing it to the green found on most of his parents anti-ghost equipment.
"What's ectoranium?" Tucker was about to answer the question when a thought appeared in his mind. Why not just show Danny? He needed to test it out first, and his friend would make a good test subject.
The techno-geek stuck out his hand with the tracker in it and said, "Grab it." Slowly, Danny reached for the tracker even though his instincts told him not to. He knew something bad would happen. Why else would it be the same color green as his parent's equipment? With his hand hovering just over the device, Danny turned his hand intangible and finally went in for the kill, experiencing a huge jolt encompass his entire body. A huge scream erupted from the halfa before he instinctively pulled away and tried to gather his breath.
"Tucker," he growled out with a glare the may have even frightened Pariah Dark, "what was that for?"
"Well you see," Tucker began as he rubbed the back of his neck, a action he most likely picked up from his best friend. "I never actually tested it. I mean, I want to make sure I get my money's worth, right?" Tucker noticed that glare Danny sent him wasn't faltering in the slightest and shrunk back a little. "Besides, you kinda deserved it." he whispered.
Because of his enhanced hearing, Danny was able to hear that quite easily. Still, he chose not to say anything for fear of starting a fight, even if it was all in good fun. He didn't need another friend hating him just after patching things up with Sam. "Okay, fine. Can we just get this stupid thing over with?" Tucker took a step back, giving Danny enough room to release the ghost from the thermos and got read to throw the tracker at it.
Hopefully it would attach to the ghost once it touched it, but he had a feeling things wouldn't go his way. After an okay from Tucker, Danny reached for the lid to the thermos and uncapped it. At first nothing happened, but then a beam of pure light shot out of the container very pissed off ghost bird escaped.
Before it could even get its bearings, Tucker threw the tracker and it attached to the bird without any complications. This seemed to attract the attention of the bird though because it turned towards Tucker and got ready to charge, turning intangible in the process. Oh what a mistake that turned out to be. Green electricity quickly encased the creature and it let out an inaudible caw as it fell to the floor convulsing in agony.
If the two didn't know any better, they would've thought it was having some sort of seizure. Watching the bird as it tried to get up again only to get shocked once more and fall to the floor, repeating the electrocution process, Tucker was tempted to manually remove the tracker and end this test run; after all, just because it was a ghost didn't mean it deserved this much torture. Maybe ectoranium did more harm to a ghost than he originally thought. Noticing Danny's troubled look, the techno-geek expected him to be going through the same debate if not worse since he himself was part ghost.
Tucker didn't voice his thoughts, though, so the experiment continued. Eventually the shocks stopped emitting from the tracker and the bird seemed to get off the ground and float patiently in front of the two teens. Odd how it didn't try to attack. Tucker suspected the bird didn't want to make the tracker shock him again, but the bird attacking them really had no effect on the tracker. The only thing that truly effected it was it turning intangible or using any other ghost powers.
"You know what to do, Tuck." Danny said, still eyeing the bird suspiciously. Oh great, Tucker thought. He had been so busy working on the tracker that he never thought of what to actually say to the ghost to make it listen. Oh won't this be fun.
Sam's date with Danny was wonderful, if a little weird. Of course it didn't have the best of beginnings and she only showed up because she promised him she would and not because she actually wanted to. Still, they were able to bond a little more and Sam was able to release some pent up steam and have her own little vengeance.
All in all, it was fun. It was sad that it couldn't have stayed that way when she got home. As soon as she opened the door she noticed two voices that distinctly sounded like her mother and father arguing over something. If hearing the word Samantha in every other sentence was any clue, she was the current topic of conversation. As she approached the two speakers though, they quickly hushed up and went on their business as if their previous argument never happened.
Sam's first thought wasn't on her being the topic of an argument, but on her mom even being home in the first place. She half expected her mother to be outside of the United States vacationing on some tropical island. That's how it usually seemed to go at least. Bear in mind that this wasn't the first time Sam had a quarrel with her mother; in fact, it used to be quite common. This was just the biggest one they had yet.
"Samantha, what are you doing?" Sam quickly came back to Earth and noticed her father giving her a questioning look. To his right was Sam's mother, not speaking or even recognizing that her daughter was in the same room as her. The goth would say that was really immature of her, but it was expected. Just because her mother returned home didn't mean she forgave her. Her mother probably just returned because she had to. Maybe for business or something. "Samantha?"
"I'm fine, alright?." Sam quickly answered with slight anger in her tone. "I just feel a little drained. That's all. I'm going to bed." her statement wasn't a complete lie. She did feel tired after from the events earlier. That didn't mean that she wasn't all the more tempted to leave just because she would be able to get away from her parents. Is that normal though, Sam asked herself. Is it normal for my relationship with my parents to be so strained? Of course not, but they were HER parents. Have you met them?
"Will you be skipping dinner, sweetie?" her father asked, concern written all over his face. One look to her still immature mother was all Sam needed to come up with an answer.
"Yeah. What's so special about dinner tonight anyways?"
"Well we decided that we were just going to get a huge bowl and make one giant salad for us all. We were even going to do it ourselves without the chef's help. You know, like a family." Something was up with her father. He seemed overly...nice. What was he playing at.
"I don't know, dad. Why do you want to make a salad? I thought the chef was supposed to make turkey."
"Well, since you happen to be vegetarian,"
"Actually it's ultra-recyclo-vegetarian," Sam interjected.
"Oh, I'm sorry, Samantha," came her father's reply. "ultra-recyclo-vegetarian. We decided to have something without meat in it." Noticing that Sam was getting uneasy over something, her father tried one last avenue of persuasion. "Since we're making the salad ourselves, you get to pick the topics." Sam's eyebrows seemed to perk up with the statement.
"I don't know, dad. I don't want to intrude." Her father's eyes seemed to beg for her to say yes, and even her mother had an interest in her decision, though she tried not to show it. "I guess we could try." she answered with much deliberation.
It's not like their relationship could get much worse. If things went downhill, the only thing ruined was one night she would've spent in her room. Together the Manson family went into the kitchen to make the best salad ever. At least to them it was. Sam's mother even seemed to warm up to her daughter again, this didn't mean she ever spoke to her though.
The next day soon arrived on a very tired goth as she plugged her ears to stop the chirping of the birds outside her house from entering her ears. It was failing miserably. The only reason she didn't have a full blown migraine right now being the shades blocking any light from entering her room.
"Good morning, Sammykins! Came the usual cheer from her mother as she entered her room. Sam was about to give her usual retort about mornings never being good, only to see her mother already left. That's odd. Usually she makes some speal about my room being too dark or trying to make me wear a dress. Sam paid that little mind as she put on her usual clothes and grabbed her books for school. She was more worried about the fact that her mother was suddenly talking to her again. As Sam ran down the steps so she could leave, she passed her mother once again who just gave a kindhearted smile and nothing more. Sam could only raise an eyebrow at her mother's antics and do her best to pretend that never happened.
Okay, something's officially wrong here. So this may have taken a little longer to write than usual. Just a little. I hope I shoved the humanity in Sam's parents enough down your throats because I'm tired of seeing fanfiction stories treating them like crap. The show never showed anything truly bad about them; in fact, they seemed to take an active interest in her life. Just because they didn't understand her didn't mean they were bad. As always, thanks to Sorenalice for editing this on such short notice. This whole subplot was planned from the start, so I didn't just make it to rant. Anyway, if you have anything to say, please review! If any reviewer wants to leave a little note for my beta, I'm sure she'll appreciate it.
Reviews: Guest : Fine, I understand. You like my writing more than mine! Don't worry, I won't let impede on my writing. Sniffle, I need a minute.
Jebediah Kerman: I couldn't help but laugh even though this has nothing to do with this story. Nice Kerbel Space Program references.