A/N: Oh my goodness! Here is the last installment of Blind Trust. I really can't believe how far this story has come, and could never imagine how popular it became. Thank you, thank you, and thank you all for being the greatest readers ever! And for the reviewers: just know you are appreciated and loved and I couldn't ask for anything more.
Now more onto this last chapter. It is, first of all, just short of 12K. I had a reviewer (everyone thank danny's girl) ask for the chapter to be longer than usual, and I made it happen :) Additionally, it is divided into 2 parts. Part 1 is Danny and Kim's trip home, and Part 2 is the awkward family dinner with the Possibles. This all occurs about 3 weeks after Chapter 35: All's Just About Well.
So without further ado, I'd like to present Chapter 36: Farewell to all of you blessed fans.
Danny emerged from his dark room Saturday morning. It had been a 3 weeks since the showdown with Vlad, and he felt as though he had never been better. After everyone had left his house on that Sunday morning (or so he had been told) Danny's parents soon returned home. The ever-clever Jazz told his parents that he had come down with a nasty trend of the flu. It had been the most relaxing few weeks he'd had in a while. And he really needed that break – from ghost-hunting, school, and constant worrying.
Kim had stayed in town and seemed to never leave Danny alone. She brought him his school work, and stayed with him to help him stay relatively caught up in all the material. She couldn't help with everything as she was in different classes than him, but every little bit counts. Afterwards, she contributed greatly to Sam and Tucker who often struggled when it was just the two of them patrolling. Danny was anxious to get back in the action, but Kim had forbidden him of getting out of his bed.
When Kim wasn't able to be there, that responsibility had fallen onto Jazz. He hadn't been outside his room since two Sundays ago thanks to the two of them. He hated it, but he agreed with Jazz that if he had stepped out in his booted leg, it would raise suspicion. So, one can imagine that that first step of freedom into the chilly hallway of his upstairs seemed comparable to Neil Armstrong's first step on the moon.
His icy ankles were hanging out of his pink flannel pajamas. They were the same once he used to wear when he was 14 and although a new pair would probably come in handy, he had never gotten around to buying one.
His feet shuffled to the stairs, and he was greeted with a small smile from a woman in a blue hazmat suit carrying a basket full of folded, clean laundry.
"Danny! Are you feeling better?" his mom asked him.
Danny smiled back – perhaps a bit too widely but he really couldn't help it. He felt great! Like a whole new person! "Much, thanks Mom."
"I really am sorry we weren't here to take care of you. I feel like it's my fault you got ill," his mother said with so much compassion in her eyes.
Is it your fault that Vlad turned into some horrible ghost hybrid with a severe vengeance that could never be quenched. Partially. Is it your fault that I myself am in the same state of "in between" as Vlad was? Yes. So, it is sorta your fault.
But he didn't say any of that. Vlad could've been a good halfa like he himself was or Danny could have never stepped into the Fenton Portal. He had only himself to blame. Besides, he was grateful for the experiences both gave him.
"It's not your fault, Mom," he semi-lied. "And it's not like the flu was gonna kill me."
Mrs. Fenton pulled Danny in and kissed his forehead sweetly. "Go sit downstairs," she instructed. "I'll make some waffles once I'm done with this." She gestured to her current laden state.
"Thanks Mom," he said genuinely and smiled as he threw his arms around her.
He practically ran down the stairs. Just using his legs for once in what had been the longest 3 weeks of his life had felt amazing.
"Danny?" Jazz caught him off guard and he jumped in surprise. By her tone, she herself was also surprised that Danny was up. And out of bed. "What are you doing?"
"I couldn't stay in bed, Jazz. Not today. I feel… wonderful! Like I'm a new person or something," he said quickly and with a bright smile. It was obvious he'd been itching to get out of bed for a while, and he had just acquired the physical means to do so. Jazz knew his healing rate was fast, but this was just incredible. He was moving so freely. He'd broken 2 ribs and his ankle. 3 weeks was better healing time than 50% of what normal humans got. And yet here was her little brother with absolutely no scars to show for it. He really did look like a new man.
"I'm happy you feel so much better. But, er, where's your…" she gestured to his foot. There had been a boot there 3 weeks ago and casts needed to be sawed off. How had her brother gotten the cast off?
"Oh that?" Danny asked and laughed. "Please. I just phased it off."
Jazz gave him a quizzical look, "How did you know it was perfectly healed?"
"I can walk, can't I?" Danny smiled goofily and Jazz couldn't help but smile too. Her brother's endless humor in grave situations really did lighten the mood.
"Besides, if it hadn't been, I wouldn't have been able to make my leg intangible and get the darn thing off. Believe me: I tried, and boy did that hurt."
"Danny!" she accused. "Do you mean to tell me this whole time you've been using your leg? What did Mrs. Possible say?"
"Like I said: I can walk can't I?" Danny teased and turned to go into the kitchen.
"You're gonna get yourself killed one of these days," his sister called after him.
He turned around and said with a huge, cocky smile:
"I already half did that!"
Danny never got to see her reaction as he had just pushed into the kitchen where he immediately took a seat at the kitchen table as he waited for his mom to make him breakfast. It had been a while since he'd had a normal family occasion – like eating breakfast – and he found himself missing such mundane events.
Maddie Fenton entered only two seconds later, and quickly whipped up homemade, buttermilk waffle batter, and poured the doughy goodness onto the waffle press. Within 10 minutes since he had woken up, Danny had a plate of steaming hot, buttery, syrup-filled buttermilk waffles. He ate them before the clock had made a full circle.
"I'll get it!" Danny shouted and rose off the couch. He had been enjoying his favorite Saturday cartoon: the Jetsons. His parents were both busy in the lab, and his sister was somewhere upstairs doing her homework. Being right by the front door, Danny thought it was best if he answered it.
He twisted the lock on the knob, and swung the rather plain door open. Standing on the other side was exactly the person he had no idea he wanted to see so bad.
"Kim!" he said, shocked.
"Danny!" the same amount of shock was in her voice. "You're out of bed. Without your, erm," she gestured to his leg. "Boot-thing. Are you feeling better?"
"Well, now that you're here I feel better than I've ever felt," he told her with a big smile.
She blushed just slightly, and brushed her hair behind her ear before correcting herself: "I meant how your leg is feeling. What about your ribs?"
"I honestly feel great. Come in!" he told her.
She stepped into the foyer, and asked, "What have you been doing all day?"
"Just watching TV. I'm soaking up this whole 'nothing to do' thing for as long as I can."
The two walked into the Fenton's living room. And took a seat on the couch.
"And who knows how much longer it's gonna last. I'll probably need to help Sam and Tucker with patrol tonight."
"Maybe not," Kim said with a hint of humor.
"How do you figure?" Danny wondered aloud.
"Okay," she began. "So my dad has been wanting to have this 'sit down dinner' with you ever since I told him that we're, you know, together. And I was thinking it could maybe be tonight? But if you're busy or not up for the trip, we can re-"
"Are you kidding?" Danny interrupted. "Of course we can do that tonight. I'll fly you home. I've been meaning to do that, but I haven't been strong enough. I know you want to go home really badly," he told her apologetically.
"Don't apologize or anything. I'm the one who wanted to wait until you were better," Kim said. "I could've asked Jazz or Tucker to do it."
"Well I'm glad you waited. Not only did I get to spend extra time with you, but I want to make sure you get there safely. The Ghost Zone is dangerous."
"Are we taking the Ghost Zone back?" Kim wondered.
"It's the quickest way," Danny shrugged.
"Oh," Kim answered shortly.
"What's up?" Danny asked placing his hand on top hers in a show of support. She immediately looked away, and he realized something was up.
"Nothing," she lied.
"Tell me, Kim," Danny said with sincerity and love. He wanted to know if he had said something wrong.
Kim took a deep breath. "It's just… never mind."
"Kim," Danny warned.
She sighed in frustration, "It's just… I don't… I don't exactly want to take the quickest way back… I…."
Danny's smile grew to three times its usual size. "You want to take a scenic route?"
"Is that dumb? You can just say no," she assured.
"Are you kidding? That's the best news I've heard all day. And my mom made me waffles for breakfast, so that's a big accomplishment!"
Kim couldn't help but smile.
She nuzzled into the crevice between Danny's arm and his chest.
Danny had to bite back a grunt. His ribs were still sore from Vlad's fight; Kim was by no means heavy, but the extra weight was not necessarily comfortable for him. But her expression was so relaxed and she looked too peaceful to disturb. He'd endured pain for long enough by now that his tolerance was rather fine. He'd be fine.
And oh how she'd missed being able to lay here. Not that she didn't understand he needed to heal. She had just… missed him. She didn't want to go back so early. She couldn't.
And yet she had to. Her parents had made it pretty clear that when the earliest opportunity arrived, she was going to be on her way home. But the scenic route would take 6 hours at the least. It would be nice to have Danny around for that.
Danny ran his hand through his already bed-head, tousled raven hair. It was getting in his face, and he was getting frustrated with it. "Okay," he glanced at the cable box. "It's 9 o'clock and it'll take us 6 or 7 hours to get to Middleton. You said something about dinner?" It had been hard for him to concentrate when she first walked in, and he hadn't exactly been paying 100% attention to what she had said.
"Oh yea," Kim suddenly retreated into a very shy version of herself, and played with her hair nervously. "My dad… well you were asleep when we all got back from Vlad's so I guess you wouldn't know… but anyways, my dad wants to have a, er, 'sit down dinner' with you as you are my, you know, and he wants to just, err, get to know you better, I think?"
"'Get to know me better'? That sounds an awful lot like an interrogation," Danny half-laughed though he was seriously nervous to be honest.
"It isn't!" Kim assured. "But he… is going to ask you a few questions…" her voice trailed off.
"Am I supposed to go in terrified?" Danny said with his heart rate already racing.
"No no! My dad isn't gonna kill you or anything! He just has this thing about making sure you're an acceptable boyfriend for me. Which you are! So you have nothing to worry about!"
"But what if he doesn't think so? I've already made a bad impression on him so far. What if he decides a toad would be a better boyfriend for you."
"He won't Danny," she reached down to grab his hand in reassurance. She seemed oddly calm about this whole endeavor. "Everything will be fine."
"What if it doesn't go that way? Do you remember your 'sit down dinner' with my family?" That had gone horribly wrong. His mother had been overshadowed by some hideous ghost creature that Vlad had most likely sent to scare Kim. Or maybe just to toy with Danny. After all, he wouldn't have been able to go ghost in front of his parents, and that means it was left to his Dad to battle off the ghost monster. Who, come to think of it, had done pretty well.
Danny willed his heart beat to slow down. "Okay, so it's 9 right now. Do you wanna leave in like 15 minutes? The sooner we leave, the slower we can travel." It was, after all his first day out of bed, and he'd intended on making quite a few stops.
Kim nodded into his chest as if to say it was fine, but still not moving from her comfortable position. And from this angle, she could feel and hear Danny's heart racing way too fast. So, she softly added, "Don't stress about it, Danny. Everything will be fine."
Danny really tried to believe her.
Then, when the cable clock showed 9:16, Danny and Kim finally decided it was time to get up. Danny was the first to stand, and Kim inwardly groaned as the cold air suddenly rushed back into her. Without Danny's body heat there, she felt the blasting AC's full effect.
"Alright," Danny stretched a bit before continuing. "Let's go tell my parent's we're leaving. Then we can take the Specter Speeder to your house, and get your luggage and all. We'll leave from there."
"Wait, we're taking the Specter Speeder?" Kim asked.
"How else would we get all your stuff there? We couldn't carry it. And I'm not really up for any physical exertion," Danny admitted.
"No of course," Kim told him, completely full of understanding. "It's just… won't every one see a UFO flying around?"
"OH!" Danny realized why she was so confused. "No, no. It has an invisible cloak so that no one can see it. The only problem is, the invisibility cloak makes the power drain quicker, so I'll have to charge it while we're at your parents' house."
"Shouldn't be a problem," Kim told him.
"Okay then," Danny began once again. "Come on, I think my mom is in the kitchen."
He held her hand to help pull her off the couch, and the two strode over to Danny's kitchen. As he got closer, he could hear water running. Upon opening the door, Danny found his short-haired mother standing at the sink doing dishes.
"Hey Mom," he said as he approached her.
"Hi, Sweetie!" she called. "What's up?"
"Not much. I just wanted to let you know I'm heading out."
"I'm taking Kim home in the Specter Speeder. I should be back late tonight."
"Okay, drive safe, Sweetie, and remember to put the invisibility cloak on," she smiled at her son and his sweet and influential girlfriend. Ever since Danny had been sick, he had been more honest with her, and she couldn't ask for anything else. It seemed like he was finally trusting her again, and she felt nostalgic for his days in junior high when he would come home and tell her everything. Recently, he'd been so distant she hardly knew him. And yet here he was telling her his plans for the day. She could only hope it would last.
"See you, Mom," he told her and turned to go.
"Love you!" she called as Danny was halfway through the doorway entering the staircase towards the lab.
"Love you, too," Danny repeated back, and led Kim in to his dark basement.
Flipping on the switch, Kim violently shut her eyes. The sudden brightness had shocked Kim's corneas, and her natural instinct had been to close them. Danny, fully accustomed to the shocking light, did not need to shield his eyes, and instead strode to the countertop.
Upon the countertop near the Ghost Portal was an anti-ectoplasmic sink that literally burned the ectoplasm off your skin with the basic water solution (H6NO to be precise). The acidic ectoplasm counteracted with the solution and the ectoplasm came right off. Harmless to human skin. Excruciatingly painful to ectoplasm entities – even those part human. Danny had learned that the hard way and made a point to stand away from it.
But on the other side of the sink, farther away from the Ghost Portal was a keypad. The panel looked like gibberish to the untrained eye, but Danny's Fenton mindset (and perhaps his parents' endless teachings) enabled him to decipher the runes.
An easy combination of different buttons and the door of the Specter Speeder slid open. Kim walked into the UFO, and Danny followed. He took a seat and the control panel and she next to him. He pressed a few seemingly random buttons, and the engine roared. He punched one particular button that made the entire ship – including its two passengers – intangible. Danny hit the accelerator and the airship flew up into the sky, through the ceiling and roof of the Fenton's home.
"Okay, first stop: your apartment," Danny said to Kim as soon as they'd reached the air.
Packing wasn't especially hard. She and Danny folded her few clothes into her suitcase ("Rainbow panties? Seriously, Kim?" she snatched them back as her face reddened with deep humiliation) and she sat on the top, pressing it close, as Danny zipped it up.
Danny then picked it up for her, and carried down the several flights of stairs. The fire in his waist told him to take a break, but he refused to let Kim wait any longer to go home. He'd have time to heal when she was safe and away from ghosts. So, he kept walking until he reached the sidewalk where he threw her heavy luggage into the Specter Speeder which was parked outside. The people of Amity Park were already so used to the crazy Fenton's inventions that it wasn't even worth hiding or making it intangible.
Having thrown her bags into it, Danny, closely accompanied by Kim, climbed into the vehicle. With a few more buttons having been pressed, they were back in the air, above the clouds, smoothly sailing to Middleton.
When they had just gotten above the clouds, Danny couldn't bite back his question a moment longer:
"So what is your dad gonna be asking me?"
Kim blinked at him. Could he seriously still be worried about that? She rolled her eyes lightly, and gestured with her hand as she said, "Oh you know, just generic stuff about you. He wants to make sure you get good grades, are responsible, and won't hurt me."
"But Kim! All of those aren't true! I DON'T get good grades, I am not at ALL responsible, and I already did hurt you!" his hands were shaking so bad that he had to grip the steering wheel just to stay grounded.
"Danny, the only reason you don't get good grades is because you're battling ghosts until the wee hours of nights. And sure, maybe you're not responsible about getting assignments in on time, but you single-handedly assumed the role of Amity Park's ghost-fighting hero. And so what if you hurt me? That was weeks ago Danny. I've already forgiven you, and my dad never has to know about it."
"What if he asks me my plans for the future? He won't approve of it," he asked worried. Danny's life-long dream was to become an astronaut – a far-fetched desire that had a very good chance of not coming remotely close to happening. It wouldn't bring much money – on the contrary it would deplete his credit. There's no way he would approve of such a whim.
"My dad's a rocket scientist. He of all people can understand a dream," Kim said calmly. "And if worse comes to worst, just keep him talking about himself. He'll like that."
Danny chuckled as Kim smiled and gently looped her hand around his. "You are going to be fine," she said, and tapped the back of his hand on every word for emphasis.
He began to drive with only one hand so he could entwine his right hand with Kim's left.
"So how are we gonna pass the time?" Danny asked the red head.
"Uh… we could play car games. I know a few." She thought back to those endless road trips with the Dweebs.
"I Spy is one."
"Great idea! I spy a cloud. Oh look, another cloud. Oh and I see cloud way over there!"
She lightly punched his arm, "Quit it."
He chuckled in spite of himself, and asked what other games she knew.
"I know one about alphabetical countries."
"Explain," he told her.
"Okay, so I'll say a country, and you say a country that starts in the same letter mine ended with."
"Sounds fun. You start."
"Uh okay… Algeria."
"Are we supposed to only be naming countries that start with A?" Danny chided.
"No," Kim laughed. "But we'll have to come across one eventually. It's your turn."
"Okay, uhh… Afghanistan," Danny stated, rather proud of himself.
"Damn it Kim! Um… Austria?"
"Where the hell is Azerbajan? Okay uhhh… New Zealand."
"Democratic Republic of Congo."
"Ummm…" Kim thought for a moment. "I don't think there's any more countries that start with A."
"Does that mean I win?" Danny smiled cockily.
"I suppose it does."
"Yes!" Danny cheered.
"Okay enough," Kim laughed. "Let's do something else."
"Wanna just… talk?" Danny suggested shyly.
"Sure," Kim had to look away to stop herself from blushing. She loved that Danny just wanted to talk to her.
"Are you excited to be going back home?" Danny asked her.
She shrugged. "Yes and no. Some things I've missed. My bed for one."
"But… I don't know. I have to go back to school and all. I'd rather not be there."
"You'll be cheerleading captain again! That's good, right?"
"Of course that part's good, but… you won't be there. Neither will Sam or Tucker. I don't know. I'll miss everyone here."
"And they'll miss you," Danny said sweetly.
"It just makes me sad to say goodbye to everyone here. I've spent the last few months with them. I don't want to just… leave."
"You can always visit, Kim. Come and spend the day. We can hang out with anyone from school."
"Well I won't miss everyone," Kim corrected herself. "Dash can stay in Amity Park, thank you very much. But…I certainly don't want to never see Val again. And Sam and Tucker? What if we just… grow apart?"
"I'm not gonna let that happen," Danny said defiantly. "They won't forget about you, and you won't forget about them. Colorado seems far, but remember that it's only half an hour through the Ghost Zone. It's not another world – it just seems that way."
"You're right," Kim said, and then yawned – a good long yawn that went on for a good 10 seconds. Danny chuckled.
"What time did you get to sleep last night?"
"Erm… 3? My PDA kept going off. Lots of ghost attacks."
Danny felt a pang of guilt hit him in the chest. She hadn't said it, but they both knew that it was Danny's job to not get any sleep. Kim didn't actually blame him or anything, but that was how Danny interpreted it.
"You should get some rest. We still have 6 hours to go," he told her, apprehensively.
"So should you," Kim backfired at him.
"I've done nothing but sleep for 3 weeks. I'm fine. Believe me."
Kim didn't want to, but she ended up agreeing. Perhaps it was 3 weeks of fatigue getting the better of her or perhaps she just didn't feel like arguing. Whichever it was, Kim chose to recline her chair, and close her eyes.
Before drifting off to sleep, however, she said, "I don't know how you do it."
"Do what?" Danny asked her, but she was already out. His question hung in the air, but the silence allowed Danny time to think of her unsaid response.
I don't know how you can hunt ghosts 'til 3 am every night. I don't know how you haven't literally exploded from the inside. How you haven't just collapsed under all the pressure and force that came with being a ghost hybrid. How you haven't keeled over from either exhaustion or horrible, grievous injuries.
"Yeah, me neither."
When Kim awoke three hours later, she was feeling much better. She lifted the lever on her seat to sit up straight once more. As soon as she did it, Danny glanced over at her. He hadn't appeared to move since she'd dozed off.
"Good nap?" Danny asked her.
"Yeah. How long was I out?"
Danny glanced at the clock on the dashboard of the Specter Speeder. "Just over 3 hours. But I'm glad you're up. I'm starving. We should eat."
At those words, Kim's own stomach growled from hunger.
"Please," she sighed, now fully aware of how starving she was.
"We're right over Nebraska now," Danny told her, looking at the bizarre GPS scanner on the dashboard. "I'll get closer to the street, so we can see what's out there."
Danny pulled them both closer to the ground, and put the invisibility shield over the ship. He didn't want to draw much attention to them, and people here weren't exactly aware of the notorious, wacky Fenton's.
"There's a Steak'n'Shake up there," Danny pointed out, and got closer to the ground. When no one was around, Danny hit a series of buttons, and the ship suddenly turned into a more car-like structure. Albeit a very large car – one that closely resembled Ford's ancient Excursion that very few people were lucky enough to obtain. Danny turned off the protective invisibility shield and rolled down the city street. He easily pulled into the parking lot, and found a parking spot right outside the doors.
Kim and Danny both entered the restaurant. They went to the bar, and looked at the menu. Danny chose a basic cheeseburger with fries and a chocolate milkshake. Kim, on the other hand, ordered a cheeseburger with a strawberry milkshake. She also wanted sweet potato fries opposed to Danny's savory ones.
Both were much too hungry to converse during the meal. Although the occasional grunt was exchanged between the two, the silence persisted throughout the meal. It was comfortable though. It wasn't awkward, just… peaceful. Danny had just slurped the last of the gooey, chocolate goodness as Kim finished off her cheeseburger. 5 minutes couldn't have gone by, but they were both so starving.
Their eyes met, and both began to giggle. Others around them must have realized how foolish they looked – sitting there and not saying a word, but neither cared. They were too absorbed in the salty and sugary delicacies that was their meal. But now that they both had finished their respective meals, Kim wanted to begin conversation.
"How much farther do we have to go?"
"It's only about 3 hours now," Danny guessed. There was a chance that he might have miscalculated, but not by a lot.
Kim nodded to convey she understood, and took another huge gulp of her shake.
"3 hours until… dinner," Danny half-laughed. They both just realized that if they arrived in Middleton at 3, neither of them would be hungry for dinner.
"I know!" Kim snapped her fingers. "If we get there too early, I'll just show you around. You know, we can take a stroll in the park or go to the mall. Then we can just tell my parents there was traffic or something."
"Traffic? In the air?" Danny chided.
"Fine, we got a late start," Kim realized her slip up.
Danny chuckled and stood up – though he realized the double movement slightly hurt his ribs – and picked up both his and Kim's trash. He threw away the greasy papers and ice cream coated cups, and walked back to the table. "Let's get out of here then. That way we'll have time to hit up the town of Middleton," and he flashed her one of Danny Phantom's star bright, cocky grins.
She rolled her eyes, but followed him to the Specter Speeder. Now that her exhaustion and starvation had been sated, she realized she was filled with another desire. One that only one ghost hybrid could possibly fill for her.
They reached the Specter Speeder in car form, and both climbed in. They continued going down the highway until there was no one around and Danny turned the air-ready ship back into its flying-capable form. When they reached maximum altitude (finally!) and Kim knew it was smooth sailing from here on, and she felt a blush begin to tingle her cheeks.
"So three more hours, huh?" she asked, though it wasn't as if she were actually curious of the answer.
"Yep," Danny answered, sounding rather bored.
"Wonder how we could spend it this time…" her voice trailed off, and she stole a glance at Danny. His eyes were on the blank sky, and did not appear to be looking at anything.
"So," Kim began, realizing Danny was never going to catch on to any of her hints, "if I remember correctly this ship has an autopilot, no?"
"It does. Why?" Danny asked innocently and looked at her. One glance at Kim though, and Danny suddenly remember the last time she asked that question. "Oh," Danny felt his warm blood ignite in his ears, and he suddenly felt deeply embarrassed.
It was Kim, ultimately, who hit the autopilot button, which was large and red and labeled unlike anything else, and who pulled Danny away from the controls. Even though they'd been dating for a long time now, he still got very nervous in these intimate situations. It was the little boy in him that Kim loved so much.
But suddenly Kim forgot all about that little boy. Danny had roughly stood up to meet Kim, and slammed his lips against Kim's. So hard, in fact, that she stumbled back until the wall caught her. The hard chrome wall of the Specter Speeder was cold to touch, and though she was taken by surprise by the force Danny so rarely exerted, it was not necessarily in a bad way. And it was this side of Danny – the Phantom side that was rough, coarse, and rigid – that Kim was so infatuated by. And she rarely got to see it, but when she did…
Kim wrapped her slender arms around Danny's neck to pull him closer. She parted her lips, but didn't give Danny's tongue a chance to enter. Her own tongue snaked her way into his mouth, and teased her lips to open. When he did, there was brief fight for dominance. Kim was not backing down the way she usually did though.
Danny rested his hands on Kim's slim waist, and Kim was slowly losing herself in him. His scent – a musky odor that was mixed with his mother's laundry detergent and undertones of ectoplasm of all things – was overpowering. It was suffocating, but not at all in a bad way.
Similarly, his broad shoulders, and muscular arms were something that Kim could hold all day. Ghost hunting had its perks, but that wasn't even her favorite part. Her favorite? Oh was she getting to that.
Danny had finally overpowered Kim in their battle, and she reluctantly went passive. But all of a sudden, that battle no longer needed to be fought. Danny pulled his mouth away from hers and glued it hotly to her throat. She moaned ever so softly, and relaxed into him. Lightly, Danny nipped Kim's neck, and a small voice in the back of his head told him that in hindsight that wasn't a great idea. But he couldn't listen to any of those. He could listen to only one thought, one thing, and one person: Kim.
He had been away from her for far too long. Well, she'd been there, but not like this. Not this fragile state of weakness that Danny, secretly, so craved to put her in.
Suddenly, Kim let out a loud whine that sounded like a wounded animal, and Danny took it as a hint to stop biting her neck, but the moment he pulled away, Kim whispered, "No," so softly into his ear, and Danny didn't need to be told twice.
Suddenly, they both became way too aware of how many layers separated them. Without asking, as he usually did, Danny turned Kim's small crop top intangible and flung it to the side. Her pale and freckled chest was still concealed by a hot pink bra, but Danny didn't pay any attention to the small mounds behind the thin cloth. Yet…
Instead, he continued on her sweet, long neck, and left another mark – his mark – there. Kim cupped his face, and pulled his head up to hers. In one swift motion, Kim turned them over so Danny's back was pressed against the wall. She began to frustratingly tug at his shirt, and whispered "off" in such a demanding tone that Danny didn't even think of disobeying, and within moments, his shirt was also tossed to the side.
While he was distracted with his shirt, Kim took advantage of Danny and pressed her hot lips to his collar bone. Danny reached around and gripped Kim's tight butt, causing Kim to gasp, but she didn't lose focus. She continued to carefully nip and kiss his hard chest.
Kim let her fingers slowly glide down his stomach. She stroked her fingers on the sides of Danny's muscular belly. This was by far her favorite part of making out with Danny. She danced her fingers on his upper oblique, and–
"Argh!" Danny roughly pulled away. Kim stared at him. She was so shocked. Her swollen, pink lips hung in a confused – and disappointed – pout. Her chest would rise and fall heavily, and she looked at him quizzically. What had made Danny pull away so abruptly? She thought they'd been having a nice time, and then… they weren't. He had made a groan, too. Not a desirous, pleasure-filled moan either. One that sounded like… well, like he was in pain.
And then Kim's mind began to piece together the pieces. She had roamed her fingers, albeit harshly, around Danny's stomach, and he had pulled away. Kim gazed down at Danny's bare chest, and saw something that immediately ignited so much rage in her that she thought she was going to explode:
On the upper left side of Danny's chest was a green bruise the size of a football.
"Danny!" Kim reprimanded accusingly. "God damn it! I thought you said you felt great! What is that?"
"Relax it's just a bruise," Danny said through his own panting voice. He'd found it much harder to transition from making out to arguing in two seconds time.
"'Just a bruise!' Danny, that is more than a bruise! Look at it."
"I am looking at it. That's how I know it isn't a big deal. Look it's almost healed."
"It's lime green!"
"Yea, it's not purple," Danny backfired. He'd wished Kim could've seen it a few weeks ago. Then she'd realized how much better he was.
"Is your leg that bad, too?" Kim demanded.
"I haven't been limping around all day, have I?" Danny half-laughed. He was desperately trying to lighten the air.
"Daniel James Fenton, I swear to God this isn't funny!" Kim was in no mood for his humor. Steam was practically blowing from her ears, and the middles of her cheeks were becoming flushed with anger. Her narrow eyebrows were furrowed ferociously, and Danny stood there in silence. The cold air of the Specter Speeder felt freezing against his warm, bare chest.
Kim strode over to the side of the ship, and roughly tugged her shirt back on. She then angrily took a seat at the "co-pilot" chair, and turned away from Danny. Danny, on the other hand, wasn't sure what to do. "How to deal with your girlfriend getting mad because she thinks you haven't yet recovered from your fatal ghost fight?" wasn't exactly a popular Google search.
So, for better or for worse, he followed his instincts.
"Kim," he said calmly, and walked over to her. He took a seat in the pilot's chair, and turned to face her. She did nothing but turn away.
"I know you're listening to me, so I'm just gonna talk," he told her. He felt an impulse to hold her hand, but had to ignore it since her entire body was facing away from him.
"I'm going to get hurt, Kim. I hunt ghosts. I have a duty to protect this town, and I know you feel that calling, too. I know you do because you do it, too! I'm going to hunt ghosts, and some are going to be more powerful than me, and I am going to get hurt. That's a risk that I have to take, okay? I don't have any other choice."
"But do I know that Danny?" Kim abruptly turned around, and stared at Danny. Angry tears were brimming her green eyes, but she wasn't giving up. She refused to back down. "Why is it your duty? You've never told me. I've just… accepted it because I feel that call to do something, to make a difference. I feel that, too. But… why you? Why can't you let Val or your parents help you? Hell! Why can't you let your friends and sister help you! Why Danny? Why do you assume this role by yourself?" she was practically screaming, and realized, at the end of her rant, that perhaps she'd gone too far. Maybe she'd pushed one too many buttons. She could see him slowly slipping back inside himself. He was withdrawing, and Kim couldn't take it. She violently grabbed his hand, and forced his darting eyes to look at her.
"Why can't you accept the help people want to give? You wouldn't have been put in this mess, Danny. You wouldn't have shattered your ribs or fractured your foot or concussed your head! That wouldn't have happened if we'd all been there."
Danny looked away once again, and refused to respond. What was once a steamy make out had turned first into an argument and now into a rather large elephant in the room that Danny had always hoped no one else knew about.
"I can't… I can't be held responsible for…" Danny stopped when his voice trailed off. He wasn't sure where he was going with that. He had no answer to give Kim.
Kim realized this was a more sensitive topic than she had first figured. He couldn't answer because he didn't know himself. And that meant…
"You don't have to tell me, Danny. But… consider it yourself. Because I don't think you know the answer."
At those words, Danny pushed that thought to the back of his brain, and suddenly wrapped his arms around Kim from behind her.
"I'm sorry," he breathed. For lying and saying I was all better. For not trusting you with that information. For not telling you about Vlad. For not letting you fight him, too. For not giving you all the information about… about how I got these powers. Because then… maybe you'd understand.
But none of those thoughts left his mind.
She held on this his arms wrapped around her front like a shawl, and leaned her head against his shoulder. "I'm sorry, too." For starting this whole argument. For asking you a question you weren't yet willing to receive. For being selfish and not thinking about the side effects. And for making you come to this God damn dinner.
Danny gently kissed the top of her head, and he pulled away. He strode over to the Specter Speeder, and pulled his shirt on as well. He then walked back over to the pilot's chair, and took a seat. With a quick glance at the map, he noted to Kim.
"Just an hour left now."
"Stop worrying Danny," Kim told her, and squeezed his sweaty, shaking hands.
"Who's worried?" Danny tried to kid, but his voice was shaking with nerves – literally. He couldn't hide his racing heart either.
Kim squeezed Danny's hand once more, and stroked his palm as they walked on her home street. They were quickly approaching Kim's house, and with every step they took, Danny's heart would skip a beat.
He'd so much preferred their spending time together earlier in the afternoon. Kim had walked all around Middleton with Danny. They'd stopped by Bueno Nacho and met up with Ron and Rufus. They walked around the mall and swung by Monique's shop. They even met a girl from Kim's class that Danny had never seen before. Though her name sounded strangely familiar. Bonnie, was it? That girl just rubbed him the wrong way. Afterwards, they traveled to the local grocery store, and Danny picked out a nice-looking apple cider to bring to Kim's family.
Then Kim brought him to a men's clothing store, so he could buy appropriate clothes for the evening. Danny had realized too late that his ratty white t shirt wasn't exactly fitting for the occasion. Rather than flying back to Amity Park, they decided Danny could just buy a new blazer. It looked very nice on him, anyways–the navy blue threads brought color to his eyes.
He also bought a button down shirt, having not brought that either, but decided to just wear his jeans. Or Kim had decided that. Apparently buying pants too, would be "too much." Despite Danny not exactly loving shopping, the entire afternoon had been a successful endeavor.
But it had to come to an end, and it was now 6 o'clock, and Danny was beginning to panic.
Kim rapped softly on the wooden door, and they awaited an answer. Danny was half-considering going intangible and flying away, but this was important to Kim's father, which meant it was important to Kim, which meant it was important to Danny.
Finally, after several agonizing seconds, the door swung open, and an attractive ginger woman, accompanied by a man of a great build behind her, stood on the other side of the threshold.
"Kimmie!" Mrs. Possible greeted, and reached in to give her daughter a great big hug.
"And Danny!" Mrs. Possible turned her attention over to the ghost boy, and pulled him into a tight hug as well. He muffled a hardly audible groan when she pulled him in. The strength of her hug had really affected his sore chest.
She released the ghost halfa, and turned her body so she could talk to both of them. "You two are just in time! I just took the ham out the oven."
"Dad!" Kim launched herself into her father's arms, and released him quickly. "This is Danny, as you already know."
"Nice to officially meet you sir," Danny extended his right arm firmly. Mr. Possible stared at him for a moment before accepting his hand and giving him a firm shake. He seemed to be taking in Danny's new appearance.
"Daniel," he finally said with a nod. "Or do you prefer Danny?"
"Danny's fine," he answered honestly. That was okay, wasn't it? To be honest with your girlfriend's dad upon first meeting him. "Oh, and I brought cider! Apple cider, I mean." Danny could have punched himself.
"That is so sweet," Mrs. Possible took the bottle from Danny's outstretched arm, and turned around. She motioned for the two teenagers to follow him into the Possible's home. Kim entered first, fully accustomed to the familiar scenery, but Danny lagged a bit. If he thought he was nervous before, that was nothing compared to how he felt right now. Words couldn't describe the feeling of horror that was currently surrounding him, suffocating him.
The first thing Danny noticed when they walked in was Kim's two younger brothers–Jim and Tim–playing on the X Box in the living room. The same living room, as a matter of fact, that Danny had previously been in in his ghost form.
He was so absorbed by the flashing lights and loud noises emitted by the screen that he didn't notice Kim follow her mother into the kitchen. He also didn't notice Mr. Possible staring at him. Instead, he crouched down next to the kid with the green button down–Jim, right?–and stared at the intriguing television.
"COD Ghosts?" he guessed by the retina display.
"You know it," the boy in red answered. Tim, wasn't it?
Danny chuckled. What young teenage boy wouldn't dream of fighting ghosts? Danny certainly did… not! And yet look how the tables have turned on him.
"What's so funny?" Jim asked, though his face never left the TV.
"Nothing. Just that you two are really bad," Danny chided.
Tim immediately stopped playing, and set the remote aside. "Do you think–" he began.
"–you can beat us?" Jim finished the challenge.
Danny laughed again, "No, but my friend certainly could."
"Oh yea, who is he?" Jim demanded.
"What's his name? I'll give him a call." Tim said smugly.
"Put him in his place." Jim agreed.
He and Tim both were challenging Danny, but he wasn't backing down.
"I think the only 'place putting' that is going to happen here is by her. And you already met her," Danny answered with a sly, cocky grin.
Jim and Tim both appeared completely unfazed by the fact that Sam was a girl. If anything, they seemed even more ready for the challenge.
"I think I'd remember if I met a gamer girl," Jim said with his hands folded.
"Yea, there aren't too many out there," Jim nodded.
"But when they are…"
"Boy, are they babes!"
"Would you? I don't know if I'd call Sam a 'gamer girl'."
Two pairs of teal eyes immediately bulged from their sockets. "Sam?" they repeated together.
"You're messing with us," Tim decided.
"Am I?" Danny countered.
Tim and Jim's expressions both faltered for a moment. Was he?
"I'll have her give you two a call. She'll love the challenge."
"Harassing my brothers? You've been here what? 3 minutes? You'll fit in just fine," Kim joked when she entered the room.
Danny immediately stood up, and strode over to her. "Harassing is such a strong word."
She laughed, and motioned to the three boys, and her father. "C'mon guys. Dinner's ready."
Danny entered the room to an already made table. The food was laid out across the surface: a freshly baked ham, a bowl of salad, a pot of roasted potatoes, and a pan of sautéed squash and zucchini. Mr. Possible sat at the head of the able, and his wife took a seat at the other head. Kim took a seat beside her, and Danny beside Kim. The two boys sat opposite Kim and Danny. That meant Danny had to sit beside Mr. Possible. Terrifying? Yes.
"Alright, what are we waiting for? Everyone just dig in!" Mrs. Possible commanded with a bright smile.
Jim and Tim were the first to pile heaps of sustenance on their plates. Mrs. Possible took the serving utensils next, and helped herself. Then it was Kim's turn, who helped herself to a healthy load. Finally, it was Danny's turn, but he was at a loss. Should he allow Mr. Possible to serve himself first? That's polite, right?
He gestured to the graying man beside him, and said, "Please, you first."
"Thank you, Danny," he said appreciatively though his face showed no smile. Danny gulped. That had been the right thing to do, yes?
Finally it was Danny's turn, and he gave himself a healthy portion of everything as well.
"So Danny how was the trip over here?" Mrs. Possible inquired.
"Great. Real short," Danny half-lied. It wasn't long… sorta.
"That's nice. And, not to jump right into things, but you are feeling okay, aren't you? Allowed proper time to heal and everything?"
"I feel great, honestly Mrs. Possible. And really thanks to you. I don't think I would've made it out of there alive if you hadn't been there," he told her 100% honestly.
"Aw, that's sweet. Just don't do anything stupid and reckless like that again! I won't always be 10 minutes away."
Danny chuckled, "No worries. I've learned my lesson."
"I'm happy to hear it," Kim's mother said sweetly, and was followed by silence. But the silence didn't last long.
"So you're like dating Kim, right?" Jim suddenly asked.
Danny could feel sweat prickle the back of his neck. "Er, yes. I am."
"So has she told you about the time she–" Tim chided.
"Tim," Kim warned.
"You don't even know what I was gonna say!" Jim countered, though the warning had been administered to Tim.
"Don't care!" Kim told them both.
They shared a grunt of frustration. They'd have to think a way around that barrier.
"So Danny," Mr. Possible cleared his throat, and began. Danny immediately turned his attention from Kim's funny brothers to her terrifying father. "Now that we've finally, erm, met. How about you tell us a little about yourself?"
Danny gulped, "Er, well I'm a junior at Casper High."
"And your grades are… good? Decent? Reputable?"
Danny could feel the sweat trickling on his brow. "They're… fine." (If you don't include my C in English that is. Lancer just won't give me a break!)
"And are you thinking about the future at all? What you might want to explore and major in?" Mr. Possible inquired once more.
The setting of the table had grown much heavier since he had begun talking. Danny hadn't even touched his food in what seemed like 5 minutes.
"I know I want to go to a school with a great science program. Right now I'm researching astrophysics. It seems just fascinating."
"Astrophysics, really? What do you want to do with that?" Mr. Possible suddenly seemed very interested.
"I'd love to become an astronaut," Danny answered, suddenly feeling rather foolish.
"You know what looks great on college resumes? Internships!" Mr. Possible snapped his fingers. "You should intern with me. I'm a rocket scientist. I could show you what the field is all about."
Danny was stunned… and then suddenly very disappointed. "That is an incredible offer, Mr. Possible, and I will definitely consider it. I just have to find the time. What with everything I have going on, I just don't think I can–"
"'Everything going on?' Do you mean with ghost hunting–fighting–whatever you call it?"
Danny's voice caught in his throat. What a casual way to bring up the elephant in the room. "Yes sir, partially," Danny squeaked.
Mr. Possible pointed at Danny with his fork, "Now, my wife, Ann here, said I wasn't to bring this up, but I must say, I am very curious. How did you get these… 'ghost powers' you call them?"
Danny opened his mouth to answer, but Mrs. Possible beat him to it: "You are darn right I said that, and I am sticking to it. We can talk about Danny's… other half… after dinner. Right now, we are getting to know Danny. The boy who is dating out daughter, James."
Mr. Possible nodded his understanding, and went back to enjoying his meal, but Mrs. Possible's words left a mark on Danny. She had said 'Danny: the boy who is dating out daughter' as if Danny Phantom wasn't dating their daughter. Did they really think that about him? Surely, they realized that Phantom and Fenton were one in the same?
And if not, Danny was going to make sure they knew that before the night was over.
"Actually, Mrs. Possible if it's alright with you, I'd like to talk about it now," Danny didn't pause for long enough for Mrs. or Mr. Possible to interject. "As you've clearly heard, I am half ghost."
Mr. Possible nodded, "And what exactly does 'half-ghost' mean?"
"It means there is a coating of ectoplasmic energy that has fused–or bonded, rather–with the strands of my DNA. The 100%, completely human DNA that I was born with."
"So this layer of ectoplasm that bonded with your cells… it didn't… overwhelm them? Your human cells are still human?"
Danny was chewing on some delicious juicy ham, and couldn't answer right away. When he did, he said, "Yes, completely. Or at least I think. When I'm in human form, my cells are completely biotic. But when I'm in ghost form, the ectoplasm comes out, and I become half-ghost."
"Can you show us?" Jim immediately interrupted.
Mrs. Possible immediately began her reprimanding: "Jim, it isn't polite to interrupt. What do we say?"
"Yeah, yeah sorry or whatever. But seriously, can you show us how you do it?" Tim begged.
"Please dude! This might be the coolest thing I've ever heard!"
"Yea why couldn't you have a super power, too?" Tim demanded of Kim.
Kim, with her arms folded, smirked, "Why couldn't you two not be total dweebs?"
Tim and Jim glared at their older sister. "We're just saying having a hero in the family is meaningless unless there's some juiciness in there," Jim defended himself.
"Well the next time Killigan threatens you, I'll be sure to only help if 'there's some juiciness in there'," Kim mocked.
"Point taken," Tim agreed then added. "But seriously, bro, can you show us."
Danny tried to laugh, but just a wheezing breath came out. Then he said, "Maybe after dinner. Which speaking of, is delicious Mrs. Possible."
"That's sweet, Danny. Thank you."
"I am still interested though, how did you contaminate your DNA?"
"It's a long story," Danny sighed.
"We've got time," Mr. Possible assured.
"Time better spent," Danny argued. "For example, I'd love to hear more about your job as a rocket scientist…"
Mr. Possible blabbed about his fascinating career for a very long time. Seconds turned into minutes, and the clock seemed to just tick slower. Finally, after the clock gone around half of its rotation, Mrs. Possible interrupted her husband.
"I'm sure that's enough information, James."
"But very interesting!" Danny said. "That is something else."
"So can you show us now?" Tim pleaded to Danny all of a sudden. It looked like he'd been holding that one in for a while. He really wanted to see Danny transform. And since everyone had finished their meals in the time it took for Mr. Possible to finish his story, he must've thought it appropriate.
"What's the matter? Do you not believe me?" Danny kidded.
"You can't believe everything you hear," Jim said matter-of-factly.
"That's true. Real eyes realize real lies. There's no other way," Tim backed up.
Danny laughed. He hadn't heard that before. "Then how about your 'real eyes' tell me what you can't see." He held up his hand, and silently focused all of his energy into the palm of his right arm. Intently, he let his ghost side take over, and moved all the ecto-energy into that one area of his body. Then–
"It's gone!" Tim shouted, too loud for the table.
Danny had effectively turned his hand intangible, and was displaying his empty sleeve to the entire table. It made him nostalgic of the times his arm would randomly fall through tables. What was once a nuisance and a cause for constant anxiety had turned into quite a show.
"Believe me now?" Danny laughed in spite of himself.
Tim and Jim smirked. They still hadn't quite decided if that would suffice.
"Kim sweetie where's your luggage?" Anne asked suddenly.
"It's in the Specter Speeder. Outside," Kim told her.
"Do you two want to go grab your suitcase?" she asked Danny and Kim. "The boys will help me pick up dinner. We can meet back for desert. I have apple pie!" Mrs. Possible's words seemed completely ordinary, but Danny could definitely feel as though she was hinting at something. And frankly, he didn't love the face she was giving him.
"Are you sure Mrs. Possible?" he specified. "I don't mind helping with the dishes. It's the least I can do after you made this delicious meal."
"That is very sweet honey, but I think we can manage. You two go grab that suitcase."
Danny and Kim both stood up from the table, and walked out of the kitchen and then the house with Kim in the lead.
"Why did your mom want us to get your bag now?" Danny asked once they were out of the house.
"Who knows?" Kim shrugged. "She probably thought we'd forget or something."
Danny accepted that as an answer, though he was still sort of rubbed the wrong way by it. It just seemed… strange? pointless? He couldn't put his finger on it that was for certain.
They reached the Specter Speeder, and Danny held the door open for Kim. She entered, with a confused look on her face. She wasn't exactly expecting the both going into the ship. That didn't make any sense; one of them could just grab it. It would have made the entire situation quicker.
"What's up?" Kim asked suddenly.
Danny smiled at her. An honest and hopeful smile that had a sinister-like quality to it. But he didn't respond. Instead, he grabbed Kim by the arm, and yanked her in closer to him. Within moments, Danny's hot mouth was on hers, and she was just able to muffle a gasp of surprise. The initial shock overwhelmed her, but she quickly gain control of herself, and wrapped her long, freckled arms around Danny's neck, tangling them in his hair.
And then it was over. Short and sweet, right? When Danny pulled away, he was greeted with a pouting Kim.
"Why'd you stop?" she whined.
"Because the last thing we need is your dad looking at your messy hair and flushed face, and knowing exactly what we were up to," Danny only half-kidded. He really was nervous that that would become a reality.
Kim rolled her eyes. How bad would that really be? But after further consideration, she realized that that would make on awkward dessert table conversation. So she, reluctantly, agreed.
"Now how about we do this the quick way?" Danny suggested with a sly smile. Kim looked very confused, but soon understood where he was going with this when the white-hot belt of energy appeared at his abdomen. The hoop of light phased his entire body: turning his baby blue orbs an electric green, morphing his thick black strands into wispy whites, and exchanged his white button down, navy blazer, and faded jeans for his signature black and white hazmat suit.
Kim smiled her understanding and grasped his outstretch hand. With the suitcase in on palm, and Kim's in his other, Danny took off into the sky, and phased through the Possible's home. He set her and the luggage down, unsure where Kim's bedroom was. Without letting go of his hand, Kim led them to the second door on the right. She dashed inside, tugging him in, too, and shut the door immediately.
Danny didn't have time to understand what was happening. She had him instantly pinned against the shut door, and had extended her head up to meet his. Without wasting time, she immediately slipped her tongue passed his lips, and reveled in the taste of the ghost boy. She ran her hands through his snow-white hair, and he rested his hands on Kim's slender waist.
Without any warning, Kim reached with her teeth, and bit Danny's bottom lip. Hard. He let out a sharp inhale from the pain, and the two immediately broke apart.
"You bit the shit out of my lip," he whispered to her, his hand holding his mouth. He began to taste the bitter, burned-flavor of ectoplasm pool in his mouth.
"That's my good bye kiss," she said with a sinister grin. "And revenge for pulling away before."
Danny smiled and shook his head in disbelief. "Remind me not to do that again."
"I don't think I'll need to remind you," she winked.
Danny had to give her that one. He stayed in his ghost form, knowing that ectoplasm clotted faster than blood, and took in the scenery. "So… this is your room, eh?"
"This is it," she said with a shrug. "Nothing special, really."
"It smells like you," Danny immediately noted.
"What do I smell like?" Kim requested, suddenly intrigued.
"'You?' That's all I get?" she said with one eyebrow raised.
"I can't describe it. It's sweet… almost flowery, but not overdone. It's like melted honey with hints of… chocolate maybe? I don't know I can't describe it!" Danny laughed at his awkward response, and brush his white hair back with a gloved hand.
Kim shrugged. "As long as it smells good."
Danny pulled her in for a hug, and inhaled her floral and nutty scent. "Believe it is."
Kim wrapped her arms around Danny back, and whispered into his ear. Her warm breath felt like the steam of freshly baked cookies as it tickled his ear. "I'm going to miss you so much."
"It's not far," Danny assured. "This isn't goodbye Kim. Think of it as… 'see you later,'" he told her.
They stayed embraced for a little longer – both too absorbed in the feeling of being held to pay much attention to how much time had passed. Finally Kim broke away.
"Alright, we should go down stairs."
"Agreed," Danny said, and phased back into his human self. He didn't want to freak out the Possible's by suddenly appearing in ghost form.
As soon as they reached the bottom of the stairs, the sweet and warm smell of fresh apple pie saturated their noses. They walked faster to the dining room just to see the dish that was releasing such a smell.
"I was just about to call you down," Mrs. Possible said as she set down the last dish of pie on the table. There was a piece in front of all 6 placemats, accompanied with a piece of semi-melted vanilla ice cream.
Kim and Danny took a seat. "This smells delicious, Mom," Kim said upon siting.
"You don't fail to impress Mrs. Possible, really. This has been the best meal I've had in a long time," Danny told Kim's mother earnestly.
"Oh surely your parents must prepare wonderful meals," Anne told him.
Danny winced. "They could… they're just both very busy."
"Remind me what they do again," Mr. Possible said with apple pie still in his mouth.
"They're scientists," Danny answered simply.
"Really?" Mr. Possible suddenly sounded very interested. Perhaps that was the wrong answer to give. "In what field? Where'd they go to school?"
"They both went to the UW Madison," Danny deliberately avoided the first question.
"Very prestigious. They have an excellent science program. And what field did you say?"
"It's very rare. I'm sure you wouldn't know of it," Danny shrugged.
"Try me!" Mr. Possible said with a smile. "I did go to Cal Tech for 12 years," he laughed at his own joke.
"Cal Tech, really? Did you go to Cal Tech as well?" Danny asked Mrs. Possible.
"MIT actually," Mrs. Possible answered. "We met at an invention competition. I crushed him," she added on the side.
Mr. Possible's smile grew, and he laughed, "You certainly did Anne. But enough about that. What do your parents do, Danny?"
Danny looked to Kim. She seemed as lost as he did. There was no way to avoid the question. So…
"They're both doctors in parapsychology," he said shortly.
"'Parapsychology?'" Mr. Possible repeated. "As in… the paranormal? As in… well, not to be indecent, but…"
"Ghosts," Danny finished.
"But they don't know of your… situation…?" Kim's mother inquired. She remembered her daughter mentioning that back at Danny's house.
"No, they do not," Danny answered briefly. The entire situation of the table grew much heavier.
"So hold on Danny," Mr. Possible began once more. Danny assumed he wouldn't be let off that easy. "If your parents are just scientists who study ghosts, why haven't you told them? They'd think it's thrilling, no? I mean… parapsychology doesn't have much hard evidence. You're living proof that it really does exist!"
"Well…" Danny didn't know where to start with that one.
"Danny's parents aren't just ghost… scientists," Kim tried to help. She hesitantly looked at Danny for confirmation to keep talking. His head nod told her it was fine. "They're ghost hunters…"
All 4 members of the Possible family asked in unison. Danny took the lead with answering their question.
"Well as you may remember, Amity Park has a… well a ghost problem, to be honest. That leads to ghosts needing to be tracked down and hunted. That's where my folks come in."
"And you hunt ghosts, too?" Mr. Possible clarified. He was already fairly certain of the answer, but he wanted to specify.
"I help out, too. Or I should say my parents help me since I do most of the work, he chuckled."
Mr. Possible, surprisingly, laughed, too. "Leave it to the parents to be slackers am I right?" Danny couldn't believe it. He was making a joke! And boy did Danny know how to deal with that.
"You're absolutely right, sir," he responded with a loose chuckle.
"Oh goodness, it's already 8 o'clock," Mrs. Possible said suddenly, looking at her watch. "You'd better be getting home dear." She rose from the table followed by her husband. Kim and Danny stood up at the same time. "Come on, Danny we'll walk you out."
Kim and Danny followed her parents through the living room and back to the front foyer. Jim and Tim followed, too, both with evil grins on their face.
"Well thank you so much for having me," Danny was saying as they walked to the front door. They all stood around, saying good bye to one another.
"Oh you're welcome any time dear. And I'm so happy to see you on your feet," Mrs. Possible pulled him in for a hug, and he winced once more. This time, however, Mrs. Possible caught it.
"Or did I speak too soon? Are you sure you're okay?" her worried expression felt like a stabbing in Danny's spine. The last thing he needed was another mother worried for him.
"I'm still a little sore, but I'll be fine, believe me," Danny waved his hand to indicate the severity, or lack thereof, of the present situation.
"You would tell me if you weren't, right? If you're not up for the trip back–"
That was the last thing Danny needed.
"No, no Mrs. Possible. I'm fine, really. It's just a little sore. Thank you for the concern though."
"If you're sure…" she still seemed unconvinced but could tell the situation was making him feel uncomfortable. She placed a caring hand upon his shoulder, and then stepped aside so Kim could also say goodbye.
She gave her boyfriend a chaste hug, and told him she'd text him later on. They had, after all, said their real good byes earlier that evening.
Danny turned to Kim's twin brothers and smiled, "I guess I'll see ya later, guys," with a wave.
"Yeah we'll see ya!"
"Unless Kim runs you off before you can make it back."
"You know how needy she can get."
"Jim! Tim!" Kim warned.
"It's starting," Tim feigned whispering.
Danny chuckled. He thought the brothers were cute trying to protect their sister, indirectly that is. In response, he said, "Alright, I'll keep it in mind."
Now came the part he'd been dreading. He turned to Mr. Possible, who beat him to words. "I'll walk you out, Danny." He placed a hand around the halfa's shoulders, and began to lead them out. Danny was terrified the older man heard him gulp in fear, but was fairly certain that the final farewells from the rest of the Possible family drained his voice.
Even when they'd shut the door and were on the opposite side, Mr. Possible didn't let go of Danny.
"I want to make something very clear, Danny."
"I only accept the best for my daughter. A pearl like Kim? I expect her to be cherished and loved by someone worthy of doing so."
Danny didn't reply. This was the part he'd been dreading all night.
He removed his hand so he could look at the teenager head on. "And after tonight, I've decided you're a good kid, Danny; even if you don't know it."
Danny was still unsure. "Well thank you, sir."
"Don't thank me yet. That was a statement, not a compliment." He paused. "Here's the compliment: I think you make a fine boyfriend for Kim. You're smart, respectful, and responsible. I trust you with her."
He really didn't know how to respond to that. "Thank you, Mr. Possible. You don't know how much that means to me, really."
"That being said," Mr. Possible went on. "I cherish Kimmie. And I'm not afraid to send some ungodly drone after you if you hurt her, clear?"
"Crystal," Danny smiled. He was unfazed by Mr. Possible's threat. He had hurt Kim once, and you could bet your bottom dollar he'd never do it again.
"Now I have a question for you that I didn't want to ask during dinner," he continued.
"Shoot," Danny shrugged.
"I'm going to guess this… field of study, profession, whatever you call it that your parents do–ghost hunting did you say?–is connected to the fact that you yourself are half-ghost?"
Danny gave the same answer he'd said during dinner: "It really is a long story, Mr. Possible," he seemed uncomfortable by the whole matter.
"Very well," the father sighed. "One day you'll tell me, Danny. One day."
Danny was grateful no more was to be said on the matter, and yet a small part of him hoped that was true. He hoped to get on a personal level with Mr. Possible.
Mr. Possible extended his hand, and Danny shook it respectfully. "Save travels, boy. See you around."
"See you," Danny repeated, and climbed into the Specter Speeder. In one swift motion, the vehicle was off the ground and soaring through the air. Then, while everyone was watching the bizarre UFO fly down the street, it vanished. Kim smirked. He made it to the Ghost Zone.
A/N: It really has been a wonderful journey, and I can't believe a year and a half has gone by so fast. Special thanks to those who have been here from the beginning! You had amazing faith that this FanFic would turn out great.
So thank you, thank you, thank you all for being incredible and fabulous! I am going to miss this story about everyone's favorite childhood heroes: Danny Phantom and Kim Possible.
~The Element of Air