Henry Danger Fanfiction: A Parent's Love For Their Child - 12. Stronger Than Caskets
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-Note: this story will not be rewritten, but all chapters will be edited (and some chapters will possibly be rewritten if they need to be).
EPISODE: GRAVE DANGER
Disclaimer: I do not own Henry Danger or the characters or anything that you recognize.
“You’re kidding, right?” Henry inquired.
Charlotte shook her head. “I know it sounds crazy, but hear me out. Invisible Brad wanted to take your position as Ray’s sidekick, so it’s safe to say he would be pretty mad he didn’t get you to quit. We knew Brad for less than a week, but we all know he was crazy. Do you think he was crazy enough to fake his own death?”
“He would have an advantage,” Shwoz agreed. “After all, nobody could have seen him get hit by the bus. Ray went to his funeral, but Brad is invisible. There wouldn’t exactly be something to see in the casket, whether Brad was there or not.”
“It does make sense when you think about it,” Henry pointed out. “But we’re going to need proof. There’s no way Ray would believe us.”
“He might. I mean, he did wake up with his bed covered in spaghetti, not to mention the incident with his underwear all over the walls,” Charlotte told him.
Henry sighed. “Still. Ray has enough to deal with right now. I don’t want to drag him out to the cemetery in case we find out Brad really is dead. Something tells me that would do more harm than good for Ray,” Henry stated as he withdrew his gumball canister from his pocket, shaking it and dumping a small gumball into his hand.
“Wait, cemetery?” Charlotte repeated. “Why are you going out there?”
“Well, I need to figure out if Invisible Brad’s alive. You have a better idea?” Henry questioned, chewing his gum and blowing the bubble, blinding green enveloping his body until it faded to reveal Henry now dressed in his Kid Danger uniform.
“Okay, but what if Invisible Brad is really dead?” Charlotte wondered as Henry ascended the steps onto the tube platform, grabbing a shovel and the anti-grav on the way and turning around once he stood under the tube.
“Then… I may need to invest in some therapy,” Henry admitted with a shiver of disgust as he pressed the button on his belt, the tube descending around him. “Take care of Ray while I’m gone! Make sure he doesn’t have any more breakdowns,” Henry called. “UP THE TUBE!”
Henry Hart disappeared in a whoosh of air.
“Okay, okay,” Henry muttered to himself, voice oddly loud in the silence of the cemetery. Henry preferred the silence. One, it meant no one was around to see Kid Danger digging up a casket. Two, the silence may have been eerie, but it would have been even creeper if the dead started talking. “Bradley Belcher, here it is.”
Henry sighed to himself before lifting the shovel and getting to work…
“One thousand, three hundred, and one shovels of dirt,” Henry sing songed in boredom as he tossed the dirt out of the hole, coughing as the action kicked up dust. He wasn’t sure how long it had been, but it had to have been a least half an hour of stick the shovel in the dirt, kick the shovel, lift the shovel, toss the dirt out of the hole. The first ten minutes hadn’t been too bad, but after that, the tedious work began to grow exhausting, and now, he was dirty, tired, thirsty, and frustrated (seriously, how deep were these graves anyway?). “One thousand, three hundred, and tw-“
Clunk. His shovel hit something.
Henry could have cheered with relief as he hurled the shovel out of the six foot hole, and he climbed out of the grave, breathing heavily as he attached the anti-grav to the casket, feeling the heavy oak box suddenly become ten times lighter until it was about as difficult as lifting a textbook.
“Man, am I glad I remembered to grab that,” Henry said to himself as he placed the casket on the ground beside the hole, and he grabbed the shovel, maneuvering it until it slid between the lid and the box. He heaved and grunted with effort as he pried the lid open, using the shovel as a makeshift crow bar.
The lid popped open, and Henry used the shovel to push the lid off, staring at the floral pattern of the padding inside the box.
On the bright side, it didn’t smell like a decomposing body, so that was a good sign, but that didn’t make Henry any more willing to feel inside of a casket that may or may not have an invisible dead body inside.
“Ray owes me for this,” he grumbled as he slowly reached towards the casket.
Henry yelped at the all too familiar voice, flinging his arms out in every direction in search of the invisible menace, but before he could locate the deranged unseen villain, he felt something (the shovel, most likely) collide with his back, bruising the skin between his shoulder blades and causing him to fall face first into the casket.
By the time Henry was able to get his bearings and roll over, the lid of the casket was closed, sealing Henry in darkness. Henry pounded against the wood, but it didn’t budge, and he could hear something… it was like a click, followed by a punching bang…
A nail gun.
“Brad!” Henry cried, refusing to admit he sounded desperate. “Let me out! What are you doing? I’ll suffocate in here! Brad!”
Henry felt the casket being lifted, felt his stomach lurch with the sudden, unexpected movement, and he screamed until his throat hurt, hoping someone would hear him, but of course, no one did. The only people around (besides the crazy guy that had trapped him in a casket, anyway) to hear him were dead.
The casket was being lowered into the hole Henry had dug, and something thumped onto the top of the casket.
Brad was filling the grave with dirt. He was burying Henry alive.
“Brad! BRAD! Stop! Please! I’ll die! What the heck are you doing? Charlotte! Jasper! Somebody!” Henry screamed, panic taking control as he kicked and punched at the lid until he had bruises on his knees from banging his knee caps against the wood and scratches on his hands, caused by his relentless blows to the walls and ceiling of his new prison. “RAY!”
Ray woke up to the distinct feeling that something was wrong. It wasn’t a sharp feeling, but it still gave him the impression that something wasn’t quite right. The feeling had been on the edge of his mind for the past week or so, but now, it intensified until it was as strong as somebody breathing down his neck.
Ray stood up from his guest bed, rubbing the sleep from his eyes and combing his fingers through his hair in a poor attempt to look presentable before he stepped out of the room and headed for the Man Cave.
“Well, I don’t know! He’s not answering his phone.”
Ray’s footsteps slowed almost to a stop in his confusion. Charlotte? She shouldn’t be at work. It was almost eight pm!
“Maybe he died,” Shwoz stated, casually.
“Shwoz, you are not helping!” Charlotte almost screeched.
“I meant his phone died!”
“Well, you couldn’t have worded that better? My point is Henry went to a cemetery alone to figure out if Invisible Brad is really dead.”
Ray blinked. What were they talking about? Of course Invisible Brad was dead! He got hit by a bus!
“I’m a little worried about what could have happened to Henry in a secluded cemetery with an invisible maniac on the loose,” Charlotte pointed out.
“For the record, you could just be overreacting. Maybe Invisible Brad is really dead, and when Henry figured that out after digging up his body, he went to the hospital for some much needed psychiatric care,” Shwoz said. “I mean, it’s not like he could’ve seen the body. He would have had to feel inside the casket, and if there’s really a body in there, it’s safe to say Henry is scarred for life.”
“While that may be true, we should have heard something by now. If not from Henry, from his parents because if he’s really in the hospital, the hospital would have called his parents, who would have called me and Jasper.”
“Look, if you’re that worried, why don’t you just out there yourself?”
“I’m thinking about it,” Charlotte replied.
Ray had heard enough. “Neither of you are going,” he spoke up as he stepped out of the hallway and descended the steps, the automatic gear shaped door closing behind him. “I’ll go find Henry. Why would you send Henry to the cemetery alone instead of waking me up?”
Charlotte and Shwoz, after getting over the shock of Ray’s sudden appearance, smiled, sheepishly.
“Henry was worried about you. He didn’t want to stress you out anymore than you already were,” Charlotte responded.
“Well, that’s stupid because now, I’m even more stressed out due to the fact that my sidekick went to a cemetery alone with a crazy invisible person- who’s supposed to be dead, I might add- on the loose!” Ray shouted, and Charlotte flushed as she realized that Ray did have a point. Shwoz grinned, not embarrassed at all, and kept eating potato chips from the bowl in his lap.
Ray deposited a gum ball in his hand with a shake of the canister, popping the gum ball into his mouth and blowing a bubble in a couple of fluid motions, not even pausing for the dramatic change into his uniform as he made his way to the tube. By the time the buckle on his belt was pressed and the tube descended around him, he was dressed as Captain Man, and Captain Man was on a mission.
“If I’m not back in an hour, send the police to the cemetery,” Ray called. “UP THE TUBE!”
Hold your breath, savor the slightly stale air soothing your aching lungs, and make the most out of the limited air in the enclosed space.
When your chest starts to hurt, breathe out.
Henry wasn’t sure how long it had been. Hours, days, weeks, he didn’t know. The logical side of his brain argued that it couldn’t have been too long; if it had been days or weeks, he would have suffocated by now. But the waiting for a rescue that may never come was agonizing; every minute consisted of a waste of precious air. Each second ticked by like time was moving through molasses, and yet each second also seemed like a rabbit bounding around the clock, seconds blurring into minutes, minutes blurring into hours. Wasting air and wasting time.
Henry had long since given up the struggle for escape. His pointless screaming and battling against the coffin walls was only using more oxygen that he couldn’t afford to waste.
His phone had no signal. No amount of screaming had drawn anyone to his location, and he had no idea how to get out of this stupid box!
Panic balanced on the edges of his mind, but the rest of his brain seemed to have shut down. All he wanted to do was sleep…
No. Henry jolted himself out of his near slumber, and he forced his eyes to remain open, hardly daring to blink. He couldn’t sleep. He might not wake up.
Henry was starting to feel dizzy and fatigued as time went on; he was groggy, as if he had just woken up from a long nap, despite his battle to not fall asleep. He was nauseas and disoriented, and he didn’t think he would know what two plus two was if somebody asked him.
Henry started to cry as the truth fully began to sink in, a truth he had been trying to ignore for the better part of his time in the grave.
Nobody was coming. He was going to die down here.
Ray could not describe the heart wrenching terror that spiked through him when he spotted the familiar grave of Bradley Belcher, the grave he had stood beside months ago and dropped a flower in to mourn his lost friend, only to see fresh dirt compacted on top.
He tried to think about it rationally at first. Maybe Henry had dug up the casket and reburied it (after all, a dug up grave would be suspicious to anyone), but if so, why would he have left the shovel and the anti-grav behind?
Ray pulled out his phone and accessed the tracking app that linked to a small tracker in Henry’s uniform. He had installed the tracker as a precaution, hoping he’d never have to use it, hoping that Henry would always be right by his side, where a sidekick… where his kid… should have been. Not lost and possibly scared or hurt or…
No. He wouldn’t think like that.
The tracking app beeped, connecting to Henry’s suit as the loading circle seemed to move at a snail’s speed to Ray, until it finally gave one last beep, louder than the others, to inform him it had Henry’s location.
Henry was… right here.
Ray frowned. How could that be? Henry was no where in si-
If anyone had chosen that moment to walk by, they would have seen a possibly crazed Captain Man digging up the grave of Bradley Belcher, using a combination of tossed shovel fulls of dirt and even digging with his bare hands at times.
How long had Henry been there? Minutes, hours? How long could a person survive buried alive? Ray didn’t know. It’s not exactly a fact he needed to know very often.
Even working at top speed with all of his strength, pumped full of adrenaline and never slowing or stopping or even growing tired in the midst of his worry, it still took too long to find the casket.
The shovel collided with the casket, and Ray sighed in relief as he used the anti-grav to lift the casket, not even pausing as he used the shovel to pry the lid open.
There was Henry. Lying still, too still.
Ray lifted his son sidekick out of the casket and laid him on the earth, staring at Henry’s pale face, slack and lifeless and…
He wasn’t breathing.
As a superhero, Ray knew CPR; unfortunately, it was something he had to use multiple times a year, sometimes multiple times a month. He just never thought he would have to use CPR on Henry.
He knew the dangers of being a superhero, but he thought… he thought he could protect Henry.
He was a fool.
Ray pinched Henry’s nose and breathed into his mouth twice before beginning to press on his chest, telling his lungs to breathe and his heart to beat.
Ray cursed and administered the life saving technique once more.
Terrifying silence, and then… a gasp.
Henry coughed, and Ray smiled, rolling the boy onto his side to make sure he didn’t choke himself as dry hacking racked his body.
Henry’s coughing fit died down after a few moments, and Henry only laid there, eyes barely open and taking in deep breaths of air, as if unable to believe that an unlimited amount of oxygen still existed after so long in that box, buried beneath mounds of dirt, unable to escape, unable to breathe.
Ray almost cried just thinking about it.
Henry, though, actually began to sob when he managed to roll over enough to see who his savior was.
“Ray,” Henry murmured, barely able to be heard, even in the silence of the cemetery.
“Yeah, kid, I’m here,” Ray assured him.
Henry’s sobs only grew louder, shaking his whole frame.
“I thought I was going to die in there,” Henry confessed.
Ray swallowed, holding Henry close to his chest, as if trying to shield him from the horrors of the world. “I would never let that happen to you, kid. Never,” he promised.
And yet, Henry was buried alive because Ray wasn’t there to protect him…
…No. This wasn’t his fault, but he knew whose fault it was.
Ray could have melted the headstone with the intensity of the glare he fixed on the name etched upon the stone.
For once, Charlotte was glad they couldn’t see Invisible Brad.
“I’m taking off the uniform, so Ray won’t be able to see me!” Brad shouted, stripping off the top layers of clothing and yanking off the mask, but before he could remove the pants, a sudden wind sounded as the tube deposited Ray on the platform.
He was carrying an unconscious or sleeping but thankfully very much alive Henry as he stepped off the platform.
“Hello, Brad,” Ray greeted, coolly, no trace of emotion in his eyes. His face was frighteningly blank. “Charlotte, Shwoz… I’ll handle it from here. Take Henry to my spare room, would you?”
Ray handed the slender lightweight of a boy to Shwoz, who barely budged under the extra weight, and the two of them didn’t need to be told twice as they exited the Man Cave, leaving Brad and Ray alone.
Ray didn’t give any indication of his movement beforehand. He simply raised his fist and sent it hurtling into the air towards where Brad’s chin should be, causing the invisible man to go flying to the floor.
Ray knelt over the dazed but still conscious man, and his expressionless face as he said his next words served their intended purpose: to scare Brad witless.
“A part of me wants to kill you, and I know I would do it if I didn’t also know that Kid Danger wouldn’t look me in the eye again if I did. But I’m sure my sidekick won’t have a problem with me having you locked up in Swellview Prison until the end of your days. The actual end of your days this time.”
Brad sputtered. “Ray, I-I’m your friend! That kid’s just your dumb sidekick.”
“No,” Ray responded, confidence and finality in every syllable of his words. “In all of the ways that matter, he’s my kid, and I will do anything to protect him. Any of those who forget that or choose to ignore that fact… let’s just say they regret laying their hand on my sidekick, and soon enough, you’ll regret it, too. A parent protects their kid. Always. And I will.”