I'm sorry about how long it took me to get this chapter up! I got midway through it and had a bad case of writer's block!
Anyway, see you guys at the bottom!
After Vlad left, I pretty much searched the bedroom top to bottom, desperately searching for some kind of escape route. I felt around the walls and floors for the out of place depression or crack that might signify a trap door. I found nothing.
I knew there was a pretty slim chance I'd find anything, but what else was I supposed to do? Wait until the Fruit Loop came back to get me? No way. I was going to try everything before I even thought about that option.
There were no windows in the room, so that was out. There was also a ghost shield, manifested as a strange green glow across the perimeter of the room. He had taken every precaution. I felt like I was in a game of cat and mouse. I was the mouse, and Vlad was the cat that had finally caught me.
But I didn't think he would kill me. He wouldn't have gone to all this trouble of locking me up if he was. He wasn't that crazy. At least, that's what I was hoping. He said he wanted to 'Take care of me', but who knows what that meant in his book? He wanted the perfect half ghost son, and that wasn't me. I wouldn't give in to his demands like a good little pet, and he wasn't going to take that in stride. I'd seen Vlad's ways of getting what he was wanted, and he would not hesitate to use force.
I looked again at the panel on the side of the wall. I figured it was what was keeping the door locked. I had tried firing ectoblasts, even freezing the darn thing with my ice powers, but nothing worked. It was ghost proof, if that was even an actual term. But that didn't mean it was indestructible.
I whipped my head around and locked my eyes on the useless looking object on the dresser, an idea coming to mind. Would Vlad really be stupid enough to make it that easy? Time to find out.
I grabbed the glass of water that had been sitting on the dresser since I woke up and carried it over to the keypad. I looked down at the clear liquid with a hopeful smile and flung it onto the device. The reaction was instant.
The thing sparked, little gold dots filling the air like a mini fireworks display. I backed away with my hands up to protect my face.
The light show ended after a short time, and I cautiously turned the metal door knob, hearing a satisfying click. I stepped outside the room, scanning both sides of the hallway for Vlad. He was nowhere to be found, and I was in the clear.
"I can't believe that worked," I said, shaking my head. Whatever Vlad had paid for that nifty little device, I didn't think it was worth the money if it was destroyed by a glass of water.
I had no idea where to go from there. This place was huge, and finding the front door would be a pretty hard guessing game. And not a fun one, especially since Vlad's giant self portrait was currently staring me down from the wall. Seriously creepy.
I fired a little ectoblast from my finger, putting holes where portrait-Vlad's eyes were. Rather than his usual stormy grey eyes, two holes surrounded by burn marks took their place, effectively eliminating the uncomfortable sensation of being watched.
I had no regrets. I transformed into my ghost half, the glowing white rings separating at my waist and leaving behind a negative image of myself. My black hair was now a whitish gray color, my eye's a piercing green. My jeans and T-shirt had been replaced by a black hazmat suit with white boots. I'd worn the same thing when I'd first entered my parents ghost portal, but in the opposite colors. For some reason, when I got my powers, my image was flipped around. I tried not to question it too much.
I turned intangible and phased up through the ceiling, watching the endless hallways and doors slide in and out of my vision. It had already been a couple of months since I'd gotten my powers, but I still hadn't gotten over the amazement of what I could do. I could pass through almost anything, fly without the need of a plane or glider, and shoot energy blasts. Not many people could do anything but dream of doing things like that.
There were still times though, when I hated my powers for all they were worth. Sure, I'd saved a lot of live's with them, but I almost ended a lot too. In another time, I had destroyed the world, killing hundreds, maybe even thousands, without mercy. Because I didn't have any left, mercy that is. I enjoyed watching death, watching people take their last breaths, their hearts giving one final beat before stopping, a dead weight in their chests. They didn't deserve to die, and I didn't deserve to live, but that's how things were.
Clockwork said that the timeline was fixed, that I didn't have to worry anymore, but I had my doubts. I knew that Dan wasn't me, but in a way, he was.He was me after I'd made all the wrong choices, after my life took a turn for the worse, and kept going. He was all the anger the resentment, and the loss the Danny of that time had ever felt rolled into one terrifying being.
I was a different person, I wasn't a monster. But I couldn't shake the fact that I could be, if the circumstances were right. It bothered me all the time, and I still didn't have the answer of what to do about it.
I arrived at the roof and sat on the edge, my legs dangling freely over the side. I stared down at the green grass of springtime so far below, thinking. What would it be like to fall, and not be able to stop yourself from hitting the ground? I wasn't suicidal, but I was curious. Would it be painful, or would it go to fast to be?
I'd heard so many different stories about dying, some more comforting than others. Some people said you would see your dead family members, waiting for you with open arms. Others said there was nothing after.
What was true? With all of the ghost fighting in the past year, I wondered. If ghosts existed, was that what came after death? But if everyone ended up in the ghost zone, wouldn't I have seen more people around? I saw Skulker, Technus, and my other enemies all time, but rarely anyone that seemed as average as the local neighborhood mail man that had died a couple years back. It was all confusing on so many levels.
"Danny?" A surprised voice asked, from far below the roof.
"Jazz?" I sat up straight, craning my head to look over the length of the lawn.
She was standing next to a stone bench, her hair an orange curtain being blown back by the wind. Here blue eye's were wide as she ran closer to me, right below the edge of the roof.
"What are you doing here!?" She hissed.
"What are you doing here?" I countered, flying down to her level.
"I'm trying to hunt a ghost. Vlad Plasmius, in fact. That's right Danny, I know all about Vlad's little secret." She narrowed her eye's, daring me to deny the fact that what she said was true.
"What!?" I yelled. How could she be stupid enough to go up against Vlad!? I was extremely annoyed and irritated with my sister, but I tried to get myself under control.
I sighed. "I was hoping you wouldn't find out, but it's too late for that." I rolled my eye's. "How did you find out anyway?"
"Your password to your computer is Paulina Fenton. Seriously Danny, you need something better than that. So why are you here, again?"
I could see she wasn't going to leave me alone until I told her, so I did. "I was kidnapped, and am currently escaping. Now share your story. How are you here? Did you take the Spector Speeder?"
She ran a hand through her windblown hair. "Not exactly. I'm faking that I ran away from home so that I can stay with Vlad until I can take him down." She looked her shoes, waiting for my response.
It was a pretty clever plan actually. But if Vlad found out what she was up to, it wouldn't end well for her.
"Well I can't let you go through with that. It's too dangerous. Now take my hand, we're going home." I held out my white-gloved hand for her to grab.
She shook her head stubbornly. "I can't. I have to prove to myself that I can do this, Danny. I want to be able to do something useful."
"Jazz, you're being useful when you cover for me. That's all I need, and want. You're a great sister, but you don't need to do this."
"True, Jasmine, you didn't need to do this, but now you will deal with the consequences."
I gasped, and turned to look up at the area by a big shady oak tree. Vlad floated there as Plasmius, a knowing smirk on his face. He must have been there invisibly the whole time. Jazz was in trouble. I was hoping we could just leave without a fight, but luck wasn't on my side.
"Jazz, go inside," I said, staring at my rival calculatingly. He seemed more focused on me than her, so now was her chance to run to safety.
There was about to be a fight, and it wasn't going to be pretty.
My sister complied, taking off to the front doors of the mansion. Vlad let her go, though he watched her the whole time.
"So, little badger," he began causally, as if there wasn't even a problem. "I see you've managed to find a way out of your room. I'll just have to put you back there, now won't I?"
"Cut the crap," I spat, crossing my arms. I did not have the time or patience for this.
"Language, Daniel," Vlad said, smirking and teleporting right in front of me.
I screamed and threw a punch, which he just turned intangible to avoid. I tried again with the same result.
"Fight fair!" I yelled. I was getting really pissed with his games.
Vlad suddenly grabbed my wrist in a vice grip and pulled me closer to him. I tried yanking his hand away with my free one, but he just squeezed my wrist until I was biting my lip to keep from showing how much it hurt.
"Keep in mind Daniel, that right now I am being gentle with you. I can do much worse than this. Calm yourself."
He dragged me upwards and made me sit on one of the branches of the oak tree, still keeping his grip on my wrist.
" What do you want?" I asked, reluctantly giving in to my captivity.
"The same thing as before, dear boy. You." Vlad's eye's flashed with desire as he stared down at me. He had me right where he wanted me.
I averted my gaze. "Let Jazz go. She's not involved in this."
"Oh, but she is. She's your sister. I'm sure you wouldn't try anything with your sister in potential firing range. If you're a good boy, however, perhaps we can compromise and Jasmine may go free."
"You wouldn't." I narrowed my eye's. Would he really stoop as low as to kill someone? He must be bluffing.
I had really screwed up this time. Not only had I gotten myself caught, but I had let Jazz do the exact same thing. The guilt I felt was horrible. If she died, it would be because of me.
"You're right," Vlad replied, messing my hair. "I wouldn't. But there are things worse than death."
I had one chance, maybe not for me, but for Jazz. She didn't deserve this.
"I'll cooperate," I said.
I watched as his face lit up with triumph at this and looked at the teenage girl that was now peeking her head out of the doorway, her eye's wide with fear. Please let Vlad have been telling the truth about letting her go, I thought.
My sister descended the small staircase and stood in the grass. Her bright hair blew slightly with the breeze and her hands were clasped behind her back. She looked determined.
"Yes, Jasmine?" Vlad announced, his voice containing a faint note of annoyance. I swear he rolled his red eyes.
"Get away from my brother."
She moved her hands in front of her and I saw she was holding a large gun, but not an average one. This one had a small screen attached to the side which beeped as she peered into it, pulling the trigger with a click. The mouth of the gun glowed a blinding green and and something with the same kind of glow was launched out of it at an amazing speed. The blast of ectoplasm hit Vlad in the chest, knocking him out of the tree. He broke one of the branches on the way down, judging by the large cracking sound.
He ended up pulling me with him, seeing as he had never bothered to let go of my wrist. Vlad hit the ground back first and I landed on top of him, sprawled across his chest. His grip on me finally relented and I was able to pull my wrist away. I grimaced as I saw finger shaped black and blue marks were starting to form there. Looks like I'd be wearing long sleeves for a while.
I blushed, noticing I was still lying on my enemy's chest and rolled off onto the dew covered grass. The drops of water tickled my face.
Vlad was just getting up, having been hit head on with the blast. Part of his cape was singed. He floated up off the ground and blinked. His gaze was fixed on Jazz with a quiet amazement at what she had done.
I admit I hadn't expected her to do something like that either. She had just entered the world of ghost hunting,yet she had just managed to land a pretty effective blow to my most dangerous enemy on her first try. Maybe I had been underestimating her.
"We have to go, now," Jazz said, running across the lawn and offering her hand to help me to my feet.
"Agreed," I said to her, standing and holding her tightly in my arms. I didn't fly with other people a lot, and I didn't want to drop her.
As I flew off back towards Amity Park, I looked back at Vlad briefly. He just stayed where he was his face unreadable. I wasn't sure why he wasn't coming after us, and I wasn't sure I wanted to. Who knows what went on in his mind?
"How about a 'Thanks'?" Jazz asked suddenly, looking up at me with a slightly nervous vibe to her. She avoided looking down. She wasn't used to being up this high.
"Thank you," I said, and I meant it. She had saved my but back there.
"No problem, little brother," She said sweetly, a strand of her hair blowing in front of her eye's. "Now, have I proved to you that I am capable of helping you with ghost hunting every once in a while? I promise that I'll stop trying to make up witty banter. I'll leave that to you."
"Yeah, you have. Just not all the time. There are some things that I've got to handle on my own."
"Well, if you ever need the extra help, you know where to find me." She turned her head to look back from where we'd come. There was nothing but clear blue sky and rolling fields of tall grass. "I don't think he's following us."
I knew he wouldn't. If Vlad was giving chase, he'd have already been here. I slowed down gradually.
"He's not. Now how mad do you think mom and dad are going to be when we get back? You ran away and I went missing."
"Fly faster," was all she said.
I paced around the living room of my mansion, not pausing to admire the green and gold decor as I usually did. My emotions were all over the place.
How dare Jasmine defy me like that! Because of her I had lost Daniel, when I had finally had the boy as my own, nonetheless. I was not giving up because of one small failure, however. This was a step in the wrong direction, but it could be fixed.
And Daniel. Why did the child have to be so stubborn? He deliberately tried to aggravate me by doing the exact opposite of what I tell him!
Next time, the girl would be far away enough not to be a nuisance. I could handle Daniel without threatening his sisters life. I was doing that very thing before she intervened.
I sighed and settled down at my desk, the now useless adoption papers for Jasmine on top of it.
I took the papers and threw them into the waste basket with a curse.
It was time to try a more direct approach.
Sequel, anyone? If I get at least five people who want one, I'll get around to writing it when I can, which would hopefully be soon. I currently have other stories in the works, but I'll find time.
I hope you all enjoyed this fic! :)