Challenge Accepted

He gave me a blank look, trying to pretend he didn't know what the hell I was talking about when he had to know damn well. I swear to you he just appeared out of nowhere, there was no chance I missed him when I first went looking for him.

"Easy. I walked from the living room to right here." He shrugged, like it was no big deal and I was freaking out over nothing. I was beginning to see that was another telltale sign he was lying out his ass.

"Yeah, sure. And I'm the Easter Bunny." I shot back. I was well past my tolerance for being lied to for the day.

"I'm serious! It's not my fault you didn't see me at first." Cue hand to the back of his neck. I glared daggers into him. It was still day one and he was already royally pissing me off with all the lies.

"Mark my words, I will find out what the hell is going on with you Daniel Fenton." I was going to do it, and unlike him I wasn't going to lie about what I was up to.

"I doubt that." I couldn't tell if he meant that to be heard or not, but I saw it as a challenge that was just begging to be taken. Now I knew I was going to find out. For no other reason than because he said I wouldn't be able to, I was going to make damn sure I did.

I walked off to go plan this out mentally debating whether or not it was fair for me to use the two years' worth of special spy training. In the end I figured I might as well, it was already obvious he had some kind of special ability. Besides, it wasn't something I could really just turn off on a whim.

I went through my stash of equipment and found the mini-cams I'd brought with me. I started invisibly setting them up after he went to bed, deciding I'd let him have the privacy of his own room but the rest of the apartment was fair game. I was going to figure out how the bloody hell half the things he did were possible, whether he really wanted me to know or not.

Daniel Fenton was going to learn real damn fast not to issue a challenge to me.

Well, I had to admit simply appearing behind Sam was not my best idea. He freaked out and I was forced to lie through my teeth yet again. He called me out on my lie, but apparently deemed it pointless to keep pushing me for an answer. If I weren't a C student, I'd had thought of changing back in the bathroom, then going to the kitchen to meet Sam. I was going to have to stop pulling stunts with my powers for a few days unless I wanted Sam to figure it out.

Part of me realized that he seemed dead serious when he declared that he'd figure out what was going on with my life, and a part of me actually wanted him to know. I felt a connection to Sam, almost like we'd met before even if I didn't know where. I knew where I wanted to know him from, but I wasn't going to set myself for that crushing blow when it was confirmed beyond a shadow of a doubt that he wasn't who I so desperately wanted him to be. It was impossible, and I knew that even if I didn't want to.

Classes started the next morning, but the periods were cut in half since none of the teachers actually taught anything on the first day, it was all just boring orientation crap. Classes were over by lunch time as a result. Normally, the lunch break would fall in the dead center of the day after the first three classes, but again this wasn't a normal day.

Sam and I were headed back to our apartment for lunch, Tucker tagging along just for the hell of it. The school offered free lunches in the cafeteria, but unless you absolutely had to, it was better to make the walk home than eat the shit they called food. Sometimes, I swore it was living, but that was always my imagination. As bad as living food was, I still missed my mother's cooking.

We were almost home when my ghost sense went off.

"Shit." I muttered before speaking up louder. "Hey Tuck, I just realized I really needed to get something from Mrs. Stuth. I'll catch up to you guys later." Then I made a break for it. Tucker got the message. It was a code we'd set up a while go just for situations like this.

It started last year when I was serving a detention with our history teacher, Mrs. Stuth. Ember decided to pay a visit halfway through and I had to choose between her life and keeping my secret identity. Naturally, her life won that battle. Long story short, she saw my transformation and stood there shell shocked while I dealt with Ember. It was a quick fight, and she just shook her head with understanding when I was done. No words were needed, and she has only ever said anything when Tuck and I asked for help getting patched up. Mrs. Stuth has always kept her mouth shut, keeping my secret and helping when she can, mainly by not tattling on my missed classes.

Coincidentally, her room was the closest room I could find and deem safe to transform.

She looked up from her work. "And you couldn't do that in front of Tucker…because…?" She'd heard us talking when we originally passed by her classroom

"New roommate doesn't know." It was a short response, but enough to satisfy her curiosity as she simply said "Ah." and went back to her work. She's always been oddly calm about my half ghost status, even seeing me transform for the first time didn't faze her much after the initial shock wore off.

I flew out of the classroom and started searching for today's threat, vaguely noting that Sam was watching me from outside our apartment building. It almost looked like he was studying me, watching me closely, the same way Skulker is always looking for a weakness.

"Today, your pelt will be mine, whelp!" Well, speak of the Devil. Here was the bat shit crazy hunter now.

"You know, that threat lost its ability to scare me after the first ten times." I replied dryly. I was really getting sick of that threat, he never got any closer to actually fulfilling it and it was really getting old.

We started our normal exchange of blows and smart remarks. It wasn't until it was too late that I saw a missile I'd just dodged headed for Sam.

"Sam! I mean, kid! Whatever your name is, run damnit!" He didn't seem to really care, almost like he figured he'd be fine even if he got hit.

The missile hit him, but I didn't have time to worry. Tucker had thrown a thermos at me and was running to Sam's side, I needed to end this before making sure Sam was okay. If I didn't things would get worse.

I'd finally gotten rid of Skulker and went to see how badly Sam had been hurt. I was surprised by what I found. He'd been knocked out from the blow, but the physical damage was way less than it should have been, knowing what Skulker's missiles were designed to do. Those things were permanently set to kill for humans, and did something scarily similar to ghosts too.

Phantom appeared right after Fenton left. I didn't think much of it, the rule being once and twice a coincidence, three times a connection. Well, it was something like that, I never was good with remember the exact wording of all the various things my teachers and trainers told me. I stood there watching, mentally noting that the robotic looking ghost looked like it was hunting Phantom like some sort of animal.

Tucker made a run for it as the ghosts started to fight. I didn't blame him, these guys could clearly cause some damage if they wanted to. The only reason I hadn't taken off as well was that I seriously needed some intel on Phantom- that was my mission after all. That and I could make myself at least mostly intangible if I needed too. I didn't really want to, but it was an option.

"Sam! I mean, kid! Whatever your name is, run damnit!" He tried to cover it, but I definitly heard him say my name. I didn't how he could have possibly known that. I was a new student, it wasn't like he'd had a chance to pick it up over time. Regardless, I wasn't leaving. I needed to see this fight and I could suffer a little damage if that was the price. Sadly, that was the price as a dodged missile hit me. I'd been distracted momentarily as I saw Tucker throw something at Phantom, as a result I hadn't managed to make myself fully intangible before the missile hit.

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