Title: Harboring Demons
seascaping - November 26, 2010 10:17 PM (GMT)
COMPLETED What you need to know:
This story takes place somewhere in Season 4. Dean is back from hell. Castiel, Dean and Sam are all trying to stop Lilith's plan of breaking the seals that keep the Devil at bay.
Dean and Sam investigate a recently renovated bed and breakfast that’s been rumored to be haunted. In finding the rumors to be true, and unable to get the manager to shut down the inn for a few nights, the Winchester boys make their reservation. However, things get complicated when they find out that it's not just a simple haunting that is plaguing the Inn.
PG-13 (Horror, mild language, violence)
“Each of us bears his own hell.”
Dean steered his 1967 Chevrolet Impala onto the dirt road. Dust billowed in the beam of his headlights causing him to straighten up. He looked over at his sleeping brother who was slumped against the window.
Dean grabbed an empty plastic cup and tossed it at him, “Sammy! Wake up.”
Sam groaned and adjusted his crumpled up jacket to fit better against his head.
Dean grabbed his elbow and yanked on it. The crumpled jacket fell, causing Sam’s forehead to hit the glass window.
He cursed, rubbed his head, and looked over at his older brother, “Why the hell did you do that?”
“Look,” Dean said, nodding his head at the view of dust and darkness in front him.
“Yeah?” Sam raised his eyebrows.
“I mean in front of us?” Dean said, “That means someone’s been on this road recently.”
“It’s a road Dean. People usually drive on 'em.”
“A dirt road with a 'do not enter' sign on it?”
“Well,” Sam shrugged, “we’re on it.”
“I’m tellin’ ya that there’s someone up ahead of us, and it can’t be good.”
Sam sighed and rubbed his tired eyes, “Well, you’re the one who wanted to take this road, you said it was a short-cut, and cop free.”
“And it's all of those things, but I’m just saying that—”
“We’re not alone…” Sam finished for him looking at the single headlight shining on his side of the window.
Dean saw it and sighed, “I’m never wrong am I?” and slowed his car down to a stop.
A motorcycle lurking in the bushes revved up, and for a moment the boys just stared at it, and then they stared at each other as it sped away in the opposite direction, back to the main road.
“Huh…” Sam said wrapping his coat up in ball again, “well that was worth waking me up for…” Sam didn’t hear his brother’s smart-ass comeback, because he was already asleep.
Two hours later Dean pulled up into a gravel driveway that was marked only by a white sign that read, Magnolia Inn.
Soon, the Impala was purring to a stop in front of a newly painted Victorian-Style house, which towered above them on a man-made hill. Dean switched off the ignition and tilted his head side to side, he groaned when he heard his neck pop. It had been a long drive, but finally they were here – here being Greenwood, Mississippi.
God help us.
Dean looked up at the Inn that seemed blessedly deserted. With any luck the place wouldn’t be open yet, giving him and Sam the much needed chance to make sure that the only thing that goes bump in the night here were the rusty pipes.
Once again, a plastic cup flew at Sam’s head and Sam groaned. “More dust?”
Dean just grinned, “Wakey-wakey, eggs and bakey!” As Sam stretched, he heard his back crack and pop like a regular bowl of rice-krispy cereal. Dean must’ve heard it too cause he said, “You sound like an eighty-year-old-woman with osteoporosis.”
His brother gave him a look. “You don’t even know what osteoporosis is.”
“Sure I do. I’ve seen the commercials. They make those caramel chewy things to prevent your bones from shrinking. Shall we run to the store and grab you some?”
Dean just grinned, “welp, we’re here, in the good ole’ backward state of Mississippi…”
“Wonderful,” Sam said.
“Hey, remember," Dean said, his face serious, "if you see a banjo, take it out, and take it out fast…”
Sam rolled his eyes, opened the car door, and stepped out into the cool morning air.
He looked up at the Inn and made a skeptical sound. “So this is the haunted inn huh?”
Dean came around to stand next to Sam, and nodded, “Yep.”
“And why are we here again?”
Dean gave his brother a patronizing stare, “Because Sammy, it’s haun-ted. By haints.”
“Haints…” He said with a grin, and then slapped his brother on the back, “That’s southern speak for ghosts, come on, let’s get a crack-a-lackin…”
Sam stared at Dean, “Are you on something…?”
Without looking back, Dean climbed the stairs and said, “Just high on life Sammy, high on life…”
The lobby was immaculate. A large Persian rug covered most of the gleaming hardwood floors. Sam’s eyes scanned the room and settled on the large bay window that was framed by heavy velvet curtains.
Dean snorted, “We can always cut them down and sew you a dress – make you all purty.”
Sam looked at him.
Dean grinned. “Gone with the Wind?”
“Since when have you seen Gone with the Wind?”
“Lot of late night TV," he said and then pointed to the stairs, “you go up, I’ll check down.”
But before either of them could take out their homemade EMF meters, a middle-aged man came over to them and said, “Can I help you gentlemen?”
Dean looked up, cleared his throat. “Right, yes, we work for a bug exterminating company, and we got a call from the health inspectors to check and make sure they’re no bug infestations before you open up for business.”
Sam nodded, “We won’t be long. We just need to take a look around…”
The man looked at them skeptically, “uh-huh, where’s your equipment?”
Sam unzipped his bag and pulled out two small hand-held EMF meters, then held them up. “very sophisticated sensors. It detects any kind of bug activity…”
The man looked at them, “right, do you have any kind of ID’s on you?”
Dean nodded, “yes sir, of course…” and he began to rummage around in Sam’s bag, then pulled out a fake health-inspector ID, and flashed it in front of the man, “It won’t take us long sir, and it’ll give you a small discount on your um, insurance.”
Sam darted his eyes over to Dean, and cleared his throat, “Insurance discounts, right, a bug-free zone makes for a happy home…um…Inn.”
It was now Dean’s turn to dart his eyes over to Sam, “Yeah…” he nodded, “what he said.”
The man sighed, “Alright, just make it fast, we’re opening up at noon today.”
Dean cleared his throat, “Noon?” He raised his eyebrows, “Today?”
“That’s right, got three guests booked already…”
Sam nodded, “We won’t be long…” and then edged his brother towards the stairs, “We’ll just start up and work our way down…do you have an attic?”
Dean held his meter out in front of him and slowly walked into one of the guestrooms, “A bug free zone makes for a happy home?” he repeated.
Sam kept his eyes on his meter and walked into the bathroom, “Insurance discounts?”
“Hey, yours was much gayer.”
“It’s the slogan of our bug business…” Sam said with a shrug.
“Sam, we don’t have a bug business.”
Sam’s meter began to twitch. “Yeah. We do…” he said, and began to look around the bathroom.
He saw the blue shower curtain and took a deep breath.
“I hate this part…” Sam said to himself as he slowly slid the shower curtain back to reveal the bathtub. He held his breath, hoping nothing would jump out in front of him.
And nothing did.
“You could say that…”
Dean stepped into the bathroom and looked at the tub, “Oh, great. That’s just great.”
The tub was filled with blood.
Dean sighed and looked over at the mirror, “at least redrum isn’t spelled out…”
Before Sam could say anything both of their meters began to hum loudly, and the dials began to spin around. Then a cold air settled around them.
Sam’s breath came out in small white puffs, “Dean?”
“Damn. And I left the shotgun in the car…”
Sam pulled out an iron rod from his bag. “How could you leave the shotgun in the car?”
“I didn’t think this place was actually haunted ok!”
“Then why the hell did you drive us here?” Sam shouted.
“So we could swing by Vicksburg – they have casinos, I thought we could lighten up the load a little, like you’ve been bitching for, and—Sammy look out!”
A white mist manifested into an ugly, pissed off looking man who was holding a long buck knife. He stabbed it where Sam’s arm had been a mere second ago. Sam swung the iron rod towards the ghost and it returned to mist and disappeared.
The room went back to its normal temperature. Sam looked over at the tub and saw the white porcelain was back to its gleaming and pristine state – the blood now gone.
“So,” Dean said, “you think Mr. Psycho knife man is featured in the brochure?” He pulled his brother out of the bathroom and examined his arm.
“We can’t let this place open up tonight,” Sam said.
“Yeah, I kinda figured that when I saw the bloody tub,” Dean shrugged, “So much for Vicksburg.”
They both walked back out into the hallway and headed down the stairs, not bothering with the rest of the house.
“What do you know about the house, or the land it’s built on?” Sam asked.
Dean shrugged, “You’re the geek with the laptop,” he shook his head, “At least it’s an actual ghost this time and not some creepy-ass little girl, so salt circles and the usual should work.”
“Yeah, well, we have to convince the manager of this place to close it down for a few days until we can get rid of—”
“Knife guy and his friends, that is, if he has any.” Dean finished for him.
They both walked back into the foyer and headed towards the front desk.
“Um, Sir…” Sam said, “I’m afraid you have an infestation, you’re going to have to postpone the opening for a few days at the least.”
“That’s impossible!” The man said, “I did some calling of my own when you two were snooping about, and there’s no bug inspection that the health inspectors issued, so as far as I’m concerned you’re just a bunch of crooks, and if you don’t get off my property, I’m going to call the police!”
Dean stepped forward and leaned down towards the little man, “Listen up, you have yourself a big problem, and if you don’t—”
Sam pulled his brother back, “Sorry sir, we’re leaving now…” Dean pulled free from his brother’s grip, but Sam yanked him back, “Aren’t we?” he said, his voice sharp and no-nonsense like.
Dean was about to say something to the manager, but his brother pushed him out the door.
When they were stumbling down the steps Sam said, “What was that all about?”
“Maybe you didn’t notice the pissed-off ghost with the long gleaming knife, but I did.”
“Yeah, I kinda remember him too,” Sam said eying his brother carefully, “but you’re not going to help anyone if the cops get called.”
“People are going to get hurt tonight – and I’m not going to let that happen. Least of all let that little prick stand in my way.”
Sam nodded, “We can try to get the Inn shut down, but chances are that’s not going to be too successful, look,” he said seeing the familiar darkness back in his brother’s eyes, “we have about five hours before noon, we can use that time to prepare ourselves. See what’s the what with this house, do some research, then we’ll make ourselves a reservation to stay at the Haunted Inn.”
It was a moment before Dean nodded and gave a curt, “fine.”
He then dug the keys out of his jean pocket and went over to the Impala.
Sam glanced back at the Inn, slung his bag onto his shoulder, and walked over to the car.
It was thirty minutes past noon when the Impala rolled back on the gravel driveway of Magnolia Inn.
Sam glanced down at the piece of paper in his hands, “So, this place use to be a plantation in the civil war.”
“Great, so what does that mean?”
“The ghost with the knife, didn’t he look, well, like he belonged in the 1850’s?”
“I don’t know. I was too busy watching that knife of his…”
Sam nodded, “There was a lot of suffering going on in places like this, and that creates—”
“Unhappy ghosts.” Dean said, “Yeah, I got that.” he parked the Impala on the side of the house and switched off the ignition, “Ok, let the fun begin…”
The boys looked down at the open trunk and sorted through their various weapons. Dean took the sawed-off shotgun, a couple of bags of salt, while Sam grabbed his Beretta and slipped it into his bag along with yet another bag of rock salt.
He glanced over at his brother, “alright, ready?”
Dean nodded and slung his bag over his shoulder, “Yeah,” and closed the trunk. “So what if that little prick of a manager is still here?”
“He isn’t – he got a call from the historical society and thinks he’s about to get some kind of reward for preserving history…”
Dean raised his eyebrows, “Huh, that was good thinkin' Lincoln,” he said as he walked around the house, but then stopped, “Hey,” he nodded towards a motorcycle that was propped up on its kickstand, “what-do-ya think?”
“I think they’re a lot of motorcycles…” Sam said, “And the chances of that being the one we saw on the dirt road is—”
“Likely, knowing us…”
“True.” Sam said and continued walking.
Before long they were standing in front of the reception desk.
A middle-aged woman looked up, “Good afternoon, do you have a reservation?”
Sam nodded, “A single room with double beds, under the name of Stanwick.”
The woman typed on the keyboard, and then nodded, “Yes, you’re on the second floor, room 206.” The woman walked over to a row of keys and took a one from the pegboard. “And here y’all go. Are you two from around here?”
Sam shook his head. “No ma’am, we’re just passing through, we saw the sign, and thought this might be a good place to stop. See, we’re writers, and we’re doing a book on southern plantations, and well, we certainly lucked out by finding this place. You don’t happen to have any records we could look at?”
The woman’s smile faltered. “Oh, uh, no, um, unfortunately there was a fire about thirty years ago that destroyed all the records.”
The boys exchanged looks.
“That’s too bad,” Sam said, is there anything you could tell us about this place, I mean, the history of it. I bet it has a lot to tell.”
Again the woman faltered, and then her attention was diverted to the slamming of a door.
The boys whipped around, prepared to face anything.
Well, almost anything.
Dean wasn’t prepared to see a beautiful red-head peering behind a tower of folded towels.
She gave an apologetic smile. “Sorry, didn’t mean for the door to slam behind me.”
“That’s alright,” Sam said giving her a smile.
The woman behind the counter sighed with relief, “Ruth, honey, will you show these two gentlemen to their room? They’re staying in 206.”
The red-head raised her brows, “of course,” she cleared her throat, “I was about to put some fresh towels in that room anyway.” She nodded for them to follow her and then began to climb the stairs.
Dean and Sam exchanged a smile and gladly followed her, enjoying the view as they walked.
Sam and Dean dumped their bags onto the bed and watched as Ruth placed the towels on the counter in the bathroom. She then slid the shower curtain down and peered into the tub.
She glanced up and saw both men staring at her.
“Just making sure everything is clean.”
“I’m sure everything is fine.” Sam said.
Well, other than the rampant pissed-off ghost wanting to kill us all and drain our blood in the bathtub, everything's just peachy.
She nodded. “Right, well, if you need anything just call the front desk.”
“We will. Thank you.” Sam said.
“Sure.” She said and walked out of the room.
When the door closed Dean turned to his brother, “Alright let’s get rid of this ghost now before he hurts someone.”
“Well, that’s not going to be easy, we have to burn the body, and before we can do that, we have to find the body. Or remains, or whatever is left of him…”
“Yeah, well, people living on plantations buried their dead on them, right? So there should be some kind of old cemetery close by.”
Sam nodded. “First we have to find it, and before we can do that, we have to identify the ghost,” he sighed, “and didn’t you see the face of that woman downstairs? She obviously didn’t want to talk about the past of this place.”
“Yeah, I got that…”
Dean loaded his shotgun with rock salt and looked at Sam, “Alright, so how do you want to do this?”
Sam shrugged. “Split up - I’ll try to find out any kind of information about the ghost that’s here, and any cemeteries that he might be buried in.”
Dean nodded. “Right, and I’ll lurk the hallways and make sure everyone is ok, and that our little knife wielding fiend isn’t hacking away at any of the guests or workers.”
“Good plan,” Sam said, “So, we’ll meet back up, say in about...two hours?”
“Alright,” Dean said, “Hey…”
Sam turned around, “Yeah?”
Dean prowled the halls with no luck in finding any ghostly activities. He went downstairs in time to see an overweight man come in carrying a duffel bag. Dean situated himself on some uncomfortable antique chair and eavesdropped.
“I’m Mr. Pearson. I have a reservation to stay the night.”
After listening to Mr. Pearson and the receptionist talk for about ten minutes, Dean learned that Mr. Pearson was a door-to-door salesman and that he was the first one of the month to meet his quota, and his company rewarded him by sending him to this, as Mr. Pearson put it, ‘quaint little Inn.’
Dean’s eyes wondered around the room and stopped when he saw the pretty redhead lurking in the shadows. She seemed to be eavesdropping as well. Her eyes caught Dean’s and she held his stare.
He was about to go up to her when a woman’s piercing scream reverberated through-out the lobby.
Dean scrambled out of his seat and hurried across the hardwood floor. He pushed his way through the still-swinging door and saw a pale-faced woman staring at seemingly nothing.
There was a cold chill still lingering in the air.
“What happened?” Dean asked.
“There…there was a…man…” she stammered, “here, with a knife, a second ago,” she shook her head, “But he’s—he’s just gone…”
“Did he hurt you?” Dean asked.
“No, no…he just, scared me.”
He nodded and slipped away as others filtered into the room asking the woman what had happened, if she was ok, and to sit down…
Dean held his sawed-off shotgun loaded with rock salt in his hands and crept down the narrow hallway. A sense of dread settled into the pit of his stomach. He could smell the evil in the air – sulfur, death, and well, just a general bad feeling all-around. His EMF meter was twitching indicating ghostly activities.
He turned the corner, and froze.
The guest he had just seen check in – Mr. Pearson – was slamming the pretty little redhead against the wall. And Mr. Pearson’s eyes were completely black.
He lunged forward about to tackle the demon possessed guest, but stopped abruptly when the redhead pushed Mr. Pearson back against the adjacent wall.
Dean’s mouth parted as he watched her recite a few words, and then a black inky blob of a disembodied demon hovered over her head like a cartoon rain cloud. Meanwhile, the guest slumped down, slid against the wall, and landed in a crumpled heap.
But the girl took no notice.
She simply lifted her right hand towards the inky blackness, and then the room was filled with a loud unholy hiss, and then it was gone.
Dean stared at her - her maid’s uniform was torn. It hung off her shoulders in shreds. It was a good moment before he could even make a noise. Although he didn’t have to. She knew he was there. She turned around, her eyes cold, unfeeling, her face held an intense expression. They stared at each other for a second, and then she knelt down to the somewhat annoying traveling salesmen, Mr. Pearson.
She pressed her fingers against the pulse in his neck. “He’s alive,” was all that she said and then she started to walk away.
That’s when Dean snapped out of his fixation. “Wait…” he said grabbing her arm as she walked by, “Are you a hunter?”
She slowly turned her head to stare at him. “Not really…”
“But how did you? I mean, you just cast out a demon and made it go poof…how did you do that? Who are you?” He narrowed his eyes, “what are you?”
She yanked her arm out of his light grasp and stared at him coldly. That’s when he noticed the red hand print seared into her forearm.
He felt his blood run cold. He stared at it and then back at her. “How did you get that?”
She swallowed and shrugged. “You ask a lot of questions,” she said not even trying to hide the hand print, or fix her uniform. She simply turned around, and attempted to walk away.
Dean was beside her instantly, “Wait.”
Her eyes narrowed, “You’re pissing me off.”
“Yeah, I get that a lot. Look, I’m gonna say a name, might mean something to you, then again it might not”
She raised her eyebrows.
He let out a slow breath and said, “Castiel.”
Now it was her turn to look stunned.
Her mouth parted. Her head titled upwards, brows furrowing, “Excuse me?”
“Castiel. Does the name sound familiar?”
She let out a scoff, shook her head with disbelief, and then said, “Dean Winchester, right?”
“How did you know that?”
“He told me about you.”
“So you do know him.”
“A kind-of confused angel? He’s hard to ignore.”
“Yeah, that’s the one,” Dean said, not once blinking his eyes, his attention fixated on the redhead. “Your name is Ruth?”
“Alex, actually,” she gestured down at her ripped uniform, “I’m not really a maid.”
“That’s alright," Dean said, "I'm not really a writer.”
She stared at him. “I don’t know what that means. Look, you better take whats-his-face back to the others,” she nodded towards the still unconscious guest.
“How did you get that hand print?”
She shrugged. “Same way you got yours I’m guessing.”
“You were in hell.” Dean’s voice was even, but his heart pounded.
She just nodded.
“You…sold your soul…?”
“Go ahead and just ask it. What did I sell my soul for?” He raised his eyebrows anticipating an answer. She smirked, “I sold it for rainbows and ponies.”
“Hey, I get it – you don’t want to talk about it, but, I mean, you have to admit, this is pretty coincidental.”
She laughed. It was cold, and hard. “No it’s not.”
“What do you mean?”
“Castiel’s handiwork. He wanted us to meet.”
“Part of his plan I’m sure, now if you step out of my way, I have work to do.”
Dean remained right where he was. “Please,” he said softly, “I just, need to know…”
Her eyes roamed his face, and she saw the sadness there, the guilt, and a small sliver of raw vulnerability that showed through the tiny crack of his hardened defenses.
She sighed. “Go ahead and ask your questions…”
“So what did you sell your soul for?”
She walked away from him, and stared at the freshly painted walls, it was a moment before she said, “My family was killed. They were brutally slaughtered by demons. My brother, my sister, and my parents – all dead, the demon that did it was quite a powerful one,” she paused, “I got to watch, but he left me alive so the pain that he caused would live on.” She then turned her green eyes on Dean, “I became twisted up with vengeance, I wanted to kill every demon I could find, I didn’t even care that they were possessing innocent people.”
Dean just nodded, unable to say anything, and unable to look away.
“Anyway, I did my research, learned all about demons and the dark underbelly of this world.” She let out a laugh that held no amusement, “and then finally, I went to the crossroads, and conned the demon there for a power.”
“I sold my soul for the power to destroy evil. The deal was sealed with a kiss, and then I killed the demon. My first one actually.” She smiled, but it never warmed her face. She cleared her throat. “Anyway, I began to use my new-found power.”
“Did you find the demon that killed your family?”
She nodded. “And a lot more at that. But, news traveled fast about me, and what I was doing. I was able to hide out for awhile, but eventually they sent the hell hounds after me a lot earlier than my contract specified.”
Silence fell between them and finally Dean broke it by asking, “How long were you in hell?”
“A long time…” she whispered.
“Yeah, I was only gone for four months, but it was years down there,” he looked at her, “what about you?”
“I was gone for two years.”
Dean’s mouth opened. He couldn’t really comprehend that. Two years meant decades in hell. He looked at her, at the hardness in her face, “H-how? How did you?”
“Look…” she said flatly, “do you really want to have a heart-to-heart about our trips down to hell? About what we did, what we had to do, what was done to us, the horror of it all?”
Dean didn’t say anything.
She nodded, “Yeah, that’s what I thought,” she looked over to the now moaning guest, “Get him back to the lobby, and make sure he checks out of this place,” and then she walked off.
Sam brushed the dirt off the backseat of his jeans and from the front of his shirt too. He then stepped into the lobby of the Inn and surveyed the vacant room. There wasn’t even anyone attending to the front desk. Before he could investigate further, Dean came out from the back, walked over to him, grabbed his arm, and dragged him back outside.
“Dean, what the hell?” Sam said, his brows furrowing with concern and annoyance.
“We need to talk.”
“O-kay.” Sam looked at Dean and recognized the serious expression there, “What is it?”
“Remember the pretty redhead?”
“Ruth, yeah, what about her?”
“Well, for one thing her name is Alex, she uh, well, let’s just say you and I – we have a lot in common with her.”
“What do you mean?”
“I saw her cast out a demon from one of the guest, and then she made the demon disappear, much like what you do with your,” he waved his hand, “psychic supernatural powers or whatever.”
Sam’s eyes widened, “What?”
“That’s not all – she’s been to hell – and she stayed there a lot longer than me.”
“What?” Sam repeated.
“Oh yeah, and there’s more, Castiel yanked her out.”
“You mean, she—?”
“Uh-huh, has the hand print to prove it and everything, she and I could start our own little club.”
“Ok, ok, let’s just back up a little,” he paused, “She cast out a demon from one of the guests?”
“That means we’re dealing with more than just a ghost.”
“I say that’s a big freaking yes.” Dean moved his head up and down like a bobble-head doll.
“Ok.” Sam held up his hands to calm his brother. “Where is she now?”
“I don’t know…I don’t know.”
It was a moment before Sam spoke, “Well, I found a cemetery…”
It was then that Dean took notice of the dirt covering Sam’s shoulders.
“What did you do?” he said, “dig up every grave there?”
“Not exactly…” Sam grimaced.
“Uh,” he ran an absent hand through his dirty hair, “I’m not exactly sure.”
“Sam…” Dean had that big-brother warning tone.
“Yeah, well, I kinda almost got buried alive.”
“Shhh!” Sam hissed looking up to make sure no one was listening, “there was an open grave at the cemetery and someone knocked me in it. Next thing I know I was eating a lot of dirt.”
“Did you see anyone there, or anything?”
“Nothing. That’s just it – it was graveyard quiet…” his lips twitched.
“Not funny, something seriously is messed up around here.”
Sam nodded, grabbed his brother’s shoulder, “C’mon,” and went back into the Inn.
The boys walked back into their room to regroup. But they both froze in the doorway and stared at the redhead who sat, shoulders slumped, in a chair.
Dean cleared his throat, “So,” he stepped into the room, “We have questions.”
She ignored him saying simply, “Good job with Mr. Pearson.”
“What do you mean?” Dean said his tone even.
“He left, went to the travel lodge instead.”
She nodded, “We have to get the rest of these people out of here.”
“What are you not telling us?” Dean asked.
“Oh, there’s a lot,” she said getting up from the chair, “There can’t be any people here when the sun sets.”
“Because that’s when the party games start,” she glanced at the two bags lying on the other bed, “and your supplies—really not going to help.”
“Look, you’re going to have to start giving some answers here.” Dean said.
She nodded, “So how much do you know about the 66 seals?”
The boys looked at each other, and then back at Alex.
It was Sam who said, “There are over 600 mystical seals that keep the devil at bay. But to free him, only 66 are needed to be broken. A demon, Lilith, was able to at least break one that we know of anyway.”
Alex nodded, “Well,” she waved her hands around the room, “Welcome to one of the seals.”
“What?” Dean said, “This Inn? This is a seal?”
“Oh yeah, and it’s about to be broken tonight, unless I stop it.”
“What’s going to happen tonight?” Sam asked.
She sighed, walked over to the window, and pushed the curtain aside. She stared at field that had a scattering of large oak trees. “This place is a bad place. And it always has been. Before the slavery, torture, and civil war, there was an unknown group of Indians. A clan really, not part of any significant tribe. They were into some pretty messed up stuff. Brought a lot of evil onto the land…”
“So, you’re saying this place is cursed?” Dean offered.
Alex turned away from the window and looked at Dean, “Those Indians opened up a rift. A window into hell if you will. Castiel, along with the really unfriendly Uriel, sealed this place. It closed the rift, but the land is still…” she paused, “evil…”
“So, someone is going to try to open up this window into hell tonight?” Sam said.
“Who?” Dean asked.
“An army of demons. They feed off this place, the energy, the ghosts, the pain – it’s like fuel for them.”
“Great…” Sam muttered.
“How do you know all of this?” Dean said.
“There’s no time.” She said flatly, “You two need to get every single person out of here, or they will die, it’s that simple.”
“And what are you going to do?” Sam asked.
“She’s coming with me…” Said a familiar voice.
The three of them turned around and saw Castiel leaning against the wall looking directly at Alex.
Alex just scoffed, and rolled her eyes.
Castiel held out his hand, “Alex…” and waited for her to approach him.
“Now’s not exactly a good time…” she said.
“Alex…” the angel repeated, his hand still outstretched.
She glanced over at Dean and Sam, “Get everyone out, I’ll…” she paused, “won’t be long,” and she walked over to Castiel and took his hand.
Then an instant later they vanished.
Sam looked over at Dean, “So, a simple haunting at a Bed and Breakfast, huh?” Dean didn’t say anything. “And you didn’t even think this place was haunted to begin with…” Sam continued, “Now we find out its Mecca for all things evil.”
Dean was still staring at where Castiel and Alex had disappeared, “Where do you think they went?” He asked.
Sam joined his brother in staring at the now empty spot, “I don’t know, but we need to get these people out of here,” he walked over to his brother and nudged him out the door, “and fast…”
Alex looked up at the large oak tree and then back over to where the Bed and Breakfast sat overlooking everything on top of the hill.
“Well, why am I here?” She asked in a bored tone without even glancing at Castiel.
“You’re here to help the Winchester brothers.”
“Uh-huh…” she said, “for how long?”
She then glanced up at Castiel, “You want me to stay with them…permanently?”
Castiel cocked his head, “Alex, you know what you have to do.”
“I won’t do it.”
“There will come a time when Sam will turn.”
Alex shook her head, “He has power, it’s true, and I know his story - the demon Azazel’s plans for him.”
“He has Azazel’s blood in him.” Castiel said.
Alex shrugged, “He was an infant, Azazel stood over his crib and dropped it in his mouth, Sam didn’t have much say in the matter.”
“Lilith couldn’t touch him,” Castiel said, “She fled her host and left.”
“He has power – no denying it.” Alex said, “But I don’t think he’ll turn.”
“But if he does, you'll be the only one who can stop him.”
“I’ll do what I have to do, but until then, I’m going make sure Sam stays…good.”
Castiel nodded, stared at her for a second, and then said, “I have to go.”
Alex turned her head towards him, “No words of wisdom or encouragement?” she said bitterly.
“You don’t need them,” He said before disappearing.
Alex pulled her wavy red hair out of her face and stared at the house. It was going to be one of those nights. She sighed and began walking towards Magnolia Inn.
The elderly couple looked at Dean, “What do you mean this place is infested?”
“Bugs ma’am, lots of bugs, you haven’t seen ‘em?”
The woman shook her head, and then looked at her husband, “Have you seen any insects Harold?”
“Can’t say that I have…”
“Well, this place is crawlin’ with ‘em,” Dean said again, “I know I ain’t stayin’ here…”
The woman looked at her husband again, “Well, Harold maybe we should check out and stay somewhere else.”
Harold sighed, “Fine, fine…” he stood up and nodded at Dean, “thanks for tellin’ us…”
Dean nodded, “sure, sure…” and watched the elderly couple walk back into their room, hopefully to get their belongings and leave.
Slow clapping echoed down the hall.
Dean turned around and saw Alex, smiling, “well done…” she said.
Dean walked towards her, “Sam made the other two guests leave. That makes everyone gone except for the people who work here.”
She nodded, “Well I’m sure you and Sam can think of something to get them out of here.”
“Oh, you know, left us to do the work alone.”
“Sounds like him.”
“Doesn’t it though?” she said with the turn of her chin.
“Where did he take you?”
“I’m not going to say.”
“Because the next question will be, ‘and what did you talk about?’”
“I’m not going to say,” She forced a smile, “I’ll meet up with you boys later…” she turned, “I have to go play with some matches.”
Dean stared at her as she walked away, “Wh-what? Wait…” he scrambled up and chased her, “matches?”
She stopped, “this place has to burn down.”
“You’re going to burn it down with everyone in it?”
“Well, that’ll get them out…” she said with a wry smile.
Dean’s eyes narrowed.
“Relax, I’m starting with the cemeteries…” she rolled her eyes, “You and Sam just keep getting people the hell out of here.”
He stared at her for a moment, and then nodded, “Alright.”
She was about to walk away but stopped, “Dean?”
She was quiet for a moment before whispering, “I’m on your side…” and with that, she left.
RoadTrip - November 27, 2010 06:21 PM (GMT)
I like it! A very nice start. Please continue! **Puppy Eyes of Doom** :lol:
seascaping - March 22, 2011 04:43 AM (GMT)
Alright, I'm going to finish this story up! Any takers? LoL
Alex stared at the weed-strewn cemetery that overshadowed the gravestones. She then saw the open grave and peered down in it.
Obviously, something was dug out.
She sighed. Great. Let’s not make any of this the least bit easy.
She began to pour gasoline over the weeds, as well as in the open grave just for the hell of it. She then tossed down the large empty, red gasoline container, and froze.
She heard footsteps.
She didn’t look back, she didn’t move. She just waited.
As the footsteps got louder and closer, she turned around, her hand lunging out to grip a neck, but before she had the chance to twist it, her hand was flung off.
“Hey…” Dean said holding up his hands in a ‘I come in peace’ kind-of-way, “it’s just me.”
“Right.” Alex said, “Why?”
“Are you here?”
“Something tried to bury Sam alive in this place, so I thought you could use a hand.”
She stared at him for a moment, and then handed him a box of matches, “start dropping matches…” she said, and then walked around the open grave and over to another large container of gasoline that sat next to it. She picked it up and continued pouring it over the graveyard.
Dean and Alex stood back and watched the blaze.
“This probably won’t go deep enough to burn the bones,” Dean said.
“That wasn’t my intent.” She said simply.
“Then what was?”
She reached into her coat pocket and pulled out a small black velvet bag, “watch…”
Dean studied her as she walked around the cemetery sprinkling out whatever was in the bag. When it touched the fire, blue sparks erupted and then the fire began to shrink back.
“What the hell?” Dean said watching the fire die, as if it were being deprived of oxygen.
Alex stood in the center of the cemetery and began to recite something Dean couldn’t understand, and then a white light descended down, bringing with it an incredibly loud explosion that sent him sprawling back.
A moment later he was digging the palms of his hands into the grass and lifting himself off the ground.
He coughed through the lingering smoke, “Alex!”
She walked over to him just as he was standing up, “yeah?”
He looked at her nonchalant expression. “What the crap was all that?” he asked looking at the now decimated cemetery, and then back at her. She didn’t even have a scratch on her.
She shrugged, “The bones are taken care of…”
She ignored the question and said, “I have a couple more cemeteries to do, why don’t you go check on Sam, make sure things are going alright over at the Inn.”
Dean shook his head, “no, nu-uh, I’m not goin’ nowhere.”
She sighed, “Fine, you can help if you want.”
But before she could walk away Dean grabbed her elbow, “What are you?”
She titled her head up, “Again with the ‘what?’ I’m not a what Dean.”
“I’ve never seen anything like what you just did.”
“We can talk and walk at the same time, grab those other containers, we don’t have a lot of time…” she glanced up at the late afternoon sky.
Dean nodded, walked over to the two large plastic containers of gasoline, picked them up, and then followed Alex as she trampled through the knee-high weeds.
She pointed straight ahead, “We don’t have far to go, there’s another cemetery just past those pine trees, it’s where the slaves buried their dead back when this place was a plantation.”
“Alright.” He said stopping, “How do you know this stuff, and what did you do back there?”
She continued walking, “I learned a few things, some tricks, that’s all.”
Dean started walking with her again, “What do you mean?”
“God, do your questions ever end?”
“They would if you answered them.”
She stopped walking and stared at him, “I can’t answer your questions, at least, not now, so give it a rest,” she grabbed at the large container of gasoline and walked towards the pine trees leaving Dean to stare at her. He had been doing that a lot lately.
Alex repeated the same process with Dean’s help. After it was over they both walked across the field, and back towards the Inn.
“You said you learned some tricks…” Dean said interrupting the silence.
She stopped walking, “Alright,” she said nodding, “when your brother died, you went to the crossroads, made a deal, and your brother got his life back.”
“How did you—?"
“When my family was slaughtered, and I spent every waking moment researching demons and found out about the crossroad legend. I never thought, not even once, about asking to bring my family back,” she scoffed, “The thought never even crossed my mind. All I wanted was vengeance and death. And that’s exactly what I got.” She shook her head with disgust, “I know things. I know how to kill, to destroy. The power behind it was given to me by a demon who took my soul. But even when I was in hell – I learned more,” she shrugged, “I’m the perfect weapon, which is exactly why Castiel pulled me out,” she raised her hands, “I’m a solider…” she bit back a laugh of hatred, “of God, if you can believe that,” she rubbed her head, “I can’t die, but I can bring death,” she sighed, “so enough of your questions. Just be content that I’m working for your side and leave it at that…” She yanked her hair back and marched off towards the Inn leaving Dean speechless.
Dean walked up the porch steps and back into Magnolia Inn.
He looked around the deserted lobby, “Sammy!”
There was no answer. But he felt a chill sweep over his body. He turned around and groaned as he ducked the silver blade of a long jagged knife.
“I was wondering when you would pop back up again…” he said while scurrying over to the fireplace to grab the iron poker. When it was firmly clutched in his hands, he swung it at the ghost, turning it back into a white swirling mist.
“Sammy!” he screamed again searching the empty room for any sign of his brother.
“Goddamnit,” he said as swung the iron poker back into the mist as the ghost tried to reform again into the pissed off plantation owner or whatever the hell he used to be. Dean stood in the center of the room, grasping the iron poker like a baseball bat and waited.
When nothing stirred, and the coldness settled back into the normal room temperature, he took a ragged breath and shouted, “Sam! Sammy?”
“Hey…” came a soft voice.
Dean turned around and saw Alex looking at him with her head slightly cocked, “loose someone?”
“Where’s my brother?” Dean said, his voice strained, as he stared at her with distrusting eyes.
“Yeah, that’s a good question…” she said roaming a nervous eye around the room, “something isn’t right.”
“Gee, what gave it away?”
She gave him a look, “We need to find Sam.”
Dean nodded, “We’ll split up, I’ll take upstairs, and you take downstairs.”
She shook her head, “No, we stay together, and--” she turned her head a little to the right, “do you hear that?”
He furrowed his brows, concentrating on the superb ringing of silence, “No.”
It was a moment before she whispered, “Oh crap,” She said and walked past Dean.
“What?” He asked.
She didn’t say anything, just continued walking through the lobby, the dinning room, a short hallway, then finally stopping when she reached a set of French doors. She darted her eyes to Dean who was beside her and then she opened the doors and stared.
There was a circle of chairs in the center of the parlor room. In each chair was one of the guests, and in the middle was Sam, tied, gagged, and bleeding from the head. Dean stepped forward but Alex thrust out her arm and grabbed him, “No.”
She looked at each of the hotel guests - the old couple was sipping tea, and the used salesman was thumbing through a magazine, and another, unfamiliar guest was staring at Sam.
No one said anything.
“What the hell is this?” Dean said walking towards the circle.
Again Alex held him back, “No, don’t step inside the circle.”
He furrowed his brow and looked down at the floor and saw a hexagram and several other chalk-drawings, indicating something a lot more serious than he first thought.
“Sam,” Dean said, “Grunt or make a noise to let me know you’re ok.”
“Hummgh,” was all Sam could manage as he fidgeted with his ropes.
“Well, that’ll do,” he turned to Alex, “so what is this? Some kind of demon circle mojo crap, and why are they all just…”
“Acting like nothing is wrong?” Alex finished for him, “because, they’re not demons.”
“Well, at least not all of them…” she said softly.
Alex stared at the small circle and looked over at Sam.
Dean stood beside her, “Well, can’t you do your demon de-possessing thing?”
“Don’t go in the circle,” was all she said, while she herself, stepped across the scrawled chalk design. She walked over to Sam and removed his gag, “You alright?”
“All the guests came back,” he said with the twitch of his lips.
She gave him a small smile, “I see that,” and began to untie his hands and feet, “How did you get yourself into this?”
“Uh…” he darted his eyes to the old couple, “they knocked me out.”
She glanced over to them, “It's always the ones you least except…”
Sam stood up and looked over at Dean. His face was a little pale, and his eyes more intense than usual. “Are you alright?”
“Hey, I’m not the one sitting in the middle of a circle of crazy,” Dean said fidgeting nervously as he watched.
Sam looked over at Alex, “Now what?” he asked as he stared at all the guests. The old couple continued to drink their tea, the salesman flipped another page of his magazine, and the girl continued to stare at the chair Sam had been in, despite it now being empty.
“You’re stepping out of the circle,” Alex said simply.
“But—” Sam stuttered.
“Now,” Alex said and shoved him in-between the old couple. Sam stumbled out of the circle and Dean quickly went over to him.
The brothers stood still and watched Alex take her place in the chair.
“O-kay,” Dean whispered, “This is weird.”
Sam nodded, “I have no idea what the hell is going on.”
“Would you two shut-up,” Alex said, “I’m trying to do something here.”
She had her eyes closed and her head remained very still. Finally she opened her eyes and looked at the girl, “You.”
The girl’s eyes flashed black for a second, and then she stood up, and said, “Alexandria, it’s so unwelcoming to see you.”
Alex didn’t move or say anything.
The demon smiled, “I feel your weariness, it rolls off of you like stench off a pig, you're—” but the rest of insult was choked as the girl began grasp at the air in front of her. Alex stood slowly up, her right hand held in front of her as she began to whisper.
The girl began to convulse, she dropped to her knees, and a black dense cloud came out of her mouth, and then hovered in the air. The girl’s body it had inhabited lay lifeless on the hardwood floor.
Alex continued to whisper holding the disembodied demon in its place until a jagged crack of fiery light appeared in the center of the floor and the demon was sucked into it.
Then the hole closed.
Alex stumbled back into the chair, exhausted. A moment later a china cup fell to the floor, shattering the deafening silence.
“Oh my God!” came the voice of the old woman.
There were other sounds - the rustling of a magazine as it fell to the floor. The gasps of confusion and surprise. Then the questions.
Dean stepped into the circle and towards Alex, “Hey.”
“Get them out of here," She paused, "Again."
“Are you alright?”
“Get them out now!" she said opening her eyes and staring at him, “Now Dean…”
He nodded, and went over to his brother who was helping the elderly couple onto their feet. The salesmen was grumbling, and the last thing Alex heard was the elderly woman whispering, “That girl is she? Is she dead?”
Dean looked at the girl lying on the floor, unmoving. He didn’t have to check her pulse to know it wasn’t beating. Alex was slumped in the chair, also unmoving.
“Damn it!” he looked over at Sam.
“I’m fine Dean, go see to her…”
Dean shook his head, “No, last time I left you, you ended up gagged, tied, and—”
“We need to call the police…” the woman said.
“Ma’am, we are the police…” Sam said, “We’re working undercover, we need to get you and your husband and everyone else out of the Inn…”
“I don’t even know what happened. How did we get here?” asked the salesmen.
“We don’t have time for questions.” Sam said ushering the three people out of the parlor, he glanced back at the now smudge hexagram and where Alex sat still slumped in her chair, and then nodded his head to her, “Go to her.”
Dean narrowed his eyes, “Try to stay out of trouble, at least for a few minutes?”
Sam rolled his eyes and pushed the guests out of the room leaving Dean alone with Alex and the dead girl at her feet.
Dean knelt beside Alex and cupped her cheek, “Hey…”
She didn’t say anything. He felt for her pulse, and was relieved to find it beating strong.
But she was completely passed out. He slid his arm underneath her knees, picked her up, and walked around the dead girl and out of the parlor.
“So explain it to me again…” Dean said glancing at the still passed out Alex on the couch.
Sam groaned, “So while you two were checking out the cemetery, I was trying to get the guests to leave.”
“Uh-huh,” Dean gripped his brother’s face and examined his bloodstained forehead, “That’s a nasty cut,” he said, “think the first-aid kit is in the kitchen?”
“I’m fine,” Sam said slapping his brother’s hands away from his face.
“And how did you get that cut again?”
Sam rolled his eyes, “The old woman knocked me out with a bookend. Next thing I know I was waking up tied and gagged.”
“Was she possessed? Please tell me she was possessed, you getting knocked out by some old broad is just too good to be—”
“I don’t know, it was weird. When I came to, everyone seemed like they didn’t even know what was going on. Like they were…” Sam paused trying to find the words, “being controlled or something.”
“Yeah, well maybe the creepy hexagram circle thingy had something to do with that.”
Sam nodded. “But why wasn’t I controlled? Why gag and bound me?”
“That’s a damn good question,” Dean said his eyes narrowing as he looked at his brother.
“What?” Sam hissed, “What’s that look for?”
“Do I really need to say it?”
Sam rolled his eyes, “This is about Ruby isn’t?”
“I don’t know, you tell me.”
Sam avoided his brother’s eyes.
“Goddamn it!” Dean hissed, “You’ve seen her, haven’t you?”
“Dean, she’s the only one who can help with my…powers.”
“You’re powers? Sam! I told you to stop using them.”
“They’re a part of me Dean, I can’t just ignore it.”
“Have you tried?”
Sam looked over to where Alex still slept, “She did it…she cast out a demon just like I can.”
“Well, she’s not a demon Sam, Ruby is.”
“What are you saying? That because I have these powers I’m a demon?”
“Don’t be stupid.” Dean said, “I’m just saying that you shouldn’t trust Ruby, because she’s using you.”
“Ruby has saved both of our asses on more than one occasion. She wants to help. Dean, she is helping. Something big is going on here, and we need all the help we can get.”
Dean scowled, “You play with fire Sammy and you’re gonna to get burned.”
“What the hell does that mean?”
“It means that once you start down a certain path, there’s no going back.”
“I believe in Ruby, I believe she can help me, help us, why can’t you trust me on this?”
“Sam, she’s a demon! With black soulless eyes who—”
“Has proven to us time and time again that she is on OUR side.”
“For how long?” Dean said stepping closer to Sam, “huh Sammy? For how long will she be on our side, what if she’s trying to…”
“To what?” Sam narrowed his eyes, “go on say it…”
“Turn you into something you’re not.”
“I’m not talking about this anymore…” Sam said, and then pointed to his cut, “I’m going to wash this, and then walk around to make sure everyone is gone,” he picked up the sawed-off shotgun and shrugged, “Oh, by the way, that ghost with the knife is still lurking about…”
Dean stood still for a moment and watched his brother disappear in the direction of the kitchen, and then turned his attention to Alex.
She was sitting up, her hand brushing the hair out of her face, “how long was I passed out for?”
She nodded and slowly stood up, “is everyone gone?”
“I think. But they just keep popping back up again.”
“Yeah, I sort of noticed that. What about the girl?”
“In the parlor?”
Alex nodded, “Where’s Sam?”
“Finding a first aid kit for his head, not that it’ll help it any, damn stubborn, hard-headed, fool kid.”
Alex gave him a tight-lipped smile. “Well, speaking of heads…” she pointed to hers, “mine’s killing me, I’m going to go help Sam find that first aid kit…” she walked over to him, “why don’t you start laying the salt lines, huh?”
But before she could slip past him, Dean grabbed her arm.
She cocked her head, “what?”
It was a moment before he said, “nothing,” and then let her go.
Alex walked into the kitchen and saw Sam rummaging through various open drawers.
She cleared her throat, “Seen any Advil in those drawers?”
He jerked his head towards her, “Hey…”
She shrugged, “headache. You?” her eyes flickered up to the cut in his head.
She nodded and began to search the cabinets. “Did all the guests finally leave, along with the workers?”
“I watched them drive off the property, so here’s hoping.” Sam said while opening up kitchen cabinets.
Alex knelt down to the cabinet under the sink, “ah-ha…” she said holding up a white box, “found it,” she set it up on the counter and unfastened it’s plastic clasp, and pulled out a small bottle of rubbing alcohol and some gauze.
She then hoisted herself up on the counter, “come here.”
Sam raised an eyebrow and looked at her.
She rolled her eyes, “Your head, I’m going to fix it…”
Sam walked over to her and watched as she moistened a piece of gauze with the disinfectant, and made no apologies with the abrupt way she pressed it against his cut.
He sucked in a breath, “easy…”
He furrowed his brow, “Yeah.”
She continued wiping the blood off, and then ripped open a band aid, “Go ahead,” she said as she smoothed it on, “ask me.”
“Ask you what?”
“About what I can do.”
He stepped back from her, “Alright, how does it work? For you I mean.”
She pointed to the fridge, “Mind grabbing me something to drink?”
He turned his back and walked to the fridge, “Water or juice?”
He grabbed a bottle and passed it to her.
“Thanks.” She twisted off the cap and took a sip, and then popped the child proof top off of the Advil and downed four. She swallowed and then set the bottle down. “My so called gift, the gift of casting out demons is a demon born gift in of itself.”
“What do you mean?”
“I mean it was given to me by a demon. I traded my soul for it,” she looked at him, “I know your story Sam.”
“What do you mean?”
“What was done to you as a baby, the demon blood, and your own powers. I know all of it.”
“It’s not a secret. They all know. Demons, angels, and they’re all afraid.”
She shook her head. “Of your potential,” she glanced at the ceiling trying to find the right words, “You’re like a piece of clay, and no one really knows what kind of shape you’ll take.”
“Are you saying I’m going to be evil?”
“No. I’m saying you have a choice.”
“Well, Dean seems to think I’m going to be walking down the path of evil.”
“Your brother is scared Sam, everyone is just really…scared.”
“Why? I don’t get it.”
She jumped down from the counter-top, and walked over to him. “You have a power Sam, much like mine, and a power like that comes from a dark place, much like mine.” She gave him a humorless smile, “each of us harbors our own demons Sam, the trick is to not let them overtake you.” She brushed her hand against his sleeve and left the kitchen.
Dean stared out the window and watched the sun set behind the pine trees. He glanced at the thick line of salt on the windowsill and his eyes caught a reflection in the glass – Sam. He turned around and stared at his brother, “How’s your head?”
“Alex fixed it,” Sam said flatly.
Dean nodded, “Where is she?”
“I don’t know. She just left the kitchen about two minutes ago.” Sam glanced at the doorways and windowsills. “Think the salt lines are going to help?”
“Couldn’t hurt,” was all Dean said.
Sam ran an absent hand through his hair, “What do you think about Alex?”
Dean loaded his gun with some silver-tip bullets, “I think she knows a lot more than she’s saying.”
“But can she be trusted?”
Dean gave him a look, “Are you really asking me that?”
Sam scoffed, “I know, I know, you don’t trust anyone.”
“And neither should you,” he said as he slammed the cartridge back into the Berretta 92.
“Hey, isn’t that my gun?” Sam said.
Dean smiled and handed it to him, “Just loading it for you.”
“Uh-huh,” Sam said slipping it into the waistband of his jeans, “So any ideas as to how to stop demons from breaking the seal tonight?”
“Yeah, I’m working on it,” Dean said as he paced the hardwood floor. “So this creepy-ass house is one of the 600 seals keeping Satan from roaming free.”
“Yeah, I remember, I don’t need a recap.”
Dean ignored him, “And Castiel sends Alex down here to help keep the seal from breaking…”
“And now she’s disappeared,” Sam said, “fabulous.”
Dean just continued his tirade, “Demons are possessing the guests, there’s a knife jabbing manic ghost on the loose, which quite frankly I don’t get, I mean, someone dug that asshole’s bones up and stashed them somewhere so no one could burn his remains. Does that sound like a demony-thing to do?”
Sam shrugged. “Demons unusually don’t care about ghosts.”
“Exactly. Which makes me think the ghost is a separate issue all together.”
“Well if that’s the case then someone, and by someone, I mean human, dug the bones up.”
“And why would they do that?” Dean asked, not really expecting an answer, “unless someone didn’t want this Inn to be successful.”
“And what better way to run it out of business then having the guests get killed off one by one?”
Dean nodded, “Ok, so, who wouldn’t want this lovely establishment to succeed?”
“You’re kidding me. So you think the Moterlodge down the street, or perhaps the motel 6 between the Burger King and Pizza Hut is our culprits?”
Sam rolled his eyes. “Yeah, alright, I see your point, well, maybe it’s someone who knows the history of this place and rather see a few casualties then the opening up of a portal to hell?”
“So you think it’s Alex?”
Sam shook his head, “No, but what about the woman at the reception desk, when we asked the history of this place she got pretty quiet.”
“The old lady? So you think the old lady dug up the grave and stashed some dead guy’s bones to make sure he haunts the place?”
Sam nodded, “yeah.”
Dean shrugged. “Ok.”
“Really,” came a new voice, “You two should take that act on the road.”
The boys turned around and saw Alex leaning against the wall.
"So where did you run off?” Dean asked with his chin tilting upwards.
“I went down to the basement,” Alex said in a nonchalant kind-of way.
“Why?” Dean managed to turn the one syllable word into two.
“The receptionist, the woman you two are talking about, her name was Mrs. Culler, and her great grandfather just so happens to be Woodrow Marsh, and he just so happens to be—”
“The ghost,” Sam said.
Alex nodded. “Very good.”
“And how do you know this?” Dean asked.
“Well, I came here because, like you I suspect, heard a rumor that this place was haunted.”
Dean scoffed, “I thought you came here because Castiel told you it was a portal to hell or something.”
Alex fixed her green eyes on him, “That,” she said with perfect annunciation, “came later.”
Sam looked at his brother, and then back at Alex. There was definitely an uncomfortable tension filling the room, and something else…
He sniffed and looked over at Dean, “Uh, do you smell that?”
Dean tore his gaze away from Alex and sniffed the air, “Oh goddamnit…”
Alex chuckled, “Someone pass gas?” the boys looked at her and she shrugged, “sorry, sulfur, demon, I know, it’s uh, Mrs. Culler.”
“What?” Sam asked.
“I was getting to it,” she said with a mock tone of defensiveness, “I went to the basement and found Mrs. Culler.”
“I thought she left with the other guests?” Sam said, “I mean I saw her leave.”
“And she did leave – to go to the basement.” Alex said again.
Dean gave an exasperated sigh, “Oh for the love of God, what the hell was in the basement?”
Alex’s lips begin to twitch, “Mrs. Culler.”
Dean looked at Sam, “I’m going to shoot her.”
Alex rolled her eyes, “Relax, I left the kitchen and saw the door to the basement ajar, I went down to have a look, and saw Mrs. Culler, she was dead, hanging from the ceiling, all by herself, by the way, no rope, she was suspended from the ceiling, the demon had vacated the body, and then Mrs. Culler dropped to the floor. What you’re smelling is the remnants of the demon.”
“Did you…” Sam stumbled on the last part.
“Kill it?” Alex finished for him, “No, it’s still lurking around…”
Dean squared his shoulders, “Alright, that’s it,” he walked over to Alex, “You’re gonna to tell us everything you know about what the hell is going on here.”
His raised voice didn’t faze her, “Actually, you two weren’t wrong in suspecting Mrs. Culler, and the motives behind her digging up the grave of her ancestor,” she fished out a bag of chips from the pocket of her oversized coat and opened it, “she did want this place to remain haunted to keep people from staying here, because she knew it was evil.”
She popped a chip in her mouth and crunched loudly.
“And how do you know that?” Dean asked.
“Because,” she said still crunching loudly, “I did my research before coming here, and then posed as a worker so I could snoop and eavesdrop.”
Dean eyed the bag of chips, “Is that sour cream and cheddar?”
“Are you gonna share with the rest of the class?”
She held out the open bag, “Help yourself.”
Dean took the entire bag from her, “God, I’m starving,” he looked over to Sam, “Hey, anything edible in the kitchen?
It was Alex who answered, “I think I saw some ham and cheese, and all the fixings for a sandwich.”
Dean gave a guttural moan, “I’m so there,” and he went off towards the direction of the kitchen.
Sam lifted his eyes to the ceiling, and then looked at Alex, “What about the ghost?”
“Oh, yeah, it’s still lurking somewhere, along with the demon. Hungry?” She said giving him the bag of chips, “I think a ham sandwich sounds pret-ty good right now.”
Alex closed the refrigerator door with her foot and balanced the mustard, pickle jar, and block of cheddar cheese in her right hand, as her left gripped a loaf of bread. Dean was busy displaying a variety of thinly sliced deli-meats on the counter.
Alex dumped her findings on the only free spot left on the counter and said, “Well, I think this is enough fixings to make a sandwich that even Shaggy could be proud of.”
The corner of Dean’s lips curved upwards. "Any chance you found a box of Scooby snacks for Sam?”
Dean looked at her. “You know, you kinda look like Daphne.”
Alex pointed to her long red hair, “It’s only fitting I guess, although I like Velma better, she was smart and solved all the crimes.”
Dean didn’t say anything he was too busy piling up the ham and turkey, and squirting out the mustard. He was completely fixated on his ever growing sandwich.
Sam walked into the kitchen and cleared his throat, “Uh, we have a problem.”
Dean groaned, “No, nuh-uh. No problem, I have a sandwich and a—” his breath came out in a white cloud that lingered in the air, “Ah damnit!”
Alex looked at the kitchen sink that was quickly filling up with blood, “Sam,” she said calmly, “do you have that iron rod with you?”
Sam held it up.
The three of them looked warily around the room, feeling the unease, but said nothing.
Then the silence was broken by Dean shouting, “Alex! Behind you!”
Alex didn’t have time to move before she felt the cold blade of a long knife sliding into her forearm, filleting it like a fish.
She heard the cocking of a shotgun and saw the rock salt blasting through the ghost – dispelling it, but only for a moment. It came back pissed off and looking to take it out on her again.
Alex looked up and saw white flakes falling down on her. It took her a moment to realize that Sam had doused her with salt. It rained down on her like hail, falling into her open wound, but she was long past the point of feeling such an infantile pain.
The temperature in the room went back up.
The blood in the sink vanished, and Alex looked down at the floor, white with salt. She looked at Sam, “You know…you could have doused the ghost with the salt, and not me ”
Sam gave a weak smile, “sorry, but he was standing right behind you.”
Dean came over to her and gripped her arm, “Ok, that looks bad.”
Alex smirked, “looks are always deceiving…”
Dean grabbed a dishtowel and began to wrap her arm up with it. She pulled it out of his light grasp, “Don’t bother.”
“What?” He frowned, “C’mon don’t be a baby. God knows you’ve been through worse than this,” and took a hold of her arm again.
Alex rolled her eyes, snatched the towel out of his hands, then wiped the blood away from her arm, and showed it to him, “See, it’s healed.”
Sam stared at it, “Whoa,” and watched the faint line of a scar appearing and then slowly disappearing.
Dean stepped back, “What the hell?”
Alex gave an amused sigh and said, “More like, ‘what the heaven?’”
The brothers stared at her.
She shrugged, and tossed the bloody towel into the sink, “Part of the deal I have with Castiel. You see, I can’t die. I was hell’s bitch, now I’m heaven’s, and let me tell you, there’s not much of a difference,” she went over to Dean’s sandwich, “You gonna eat that?”
Dean watched as Alex grabbed his sandwich and proceeded to take a massive bite out of it. A string of ham trailed out of her mouth and a blob of mustard landed on her torn maid's uniform.
For a moment, Dean was rendered speechless. He couldn't understand what he was feeling. Turned on? Annoyed? In love? Hungry? He was going to go with annoyed and hungry. Anything else would just be too complicated.
"Alright," Dean said lunging forward to grab his sandwich, "Get your freaky paws off my food."
"Well, you were letting it go to waste."
"No I wasn't. I was too busy dealing with the fact that you're indestructible."
"I'm not indestructible. I just can't be killed."
"What the hell’s the difference?"
Sam stood by watching the two argue and was becoming more and more annoyed by the second. "Will you two shut up?" He stepped between them, "We have more important things to worry about, like, oh, demons trying to break the seal..."
Dean put his sandwich down on the counter and sighed. He gave it once last longing look, and then said, "You're right. We need a plan."
Sam glanced over at Alex, "You're the one with the connections. What does Castiel want us to do?"
"Stop the demons from breaking the seal."
Dean snorted. "Yeah, we know that, but how?"
"He didn't say. You know how unhelpful Castiel can be.”
“Great.” Dean said, “So to recap. Somewhere on this property is a gateway to hell that’s been sealed up, and now the demons are gathering around to break it open tonight in order to help free the devil and bring on the apocalypse. Does that about cover it?”
Alex plunked a string of ham off the sandwich and nodded. “Yep.”
“Let’s not forget,” Sam said, “about the pissed off ghost haunting the Inn wanting to filet us, and drain our blood in the bathtub—”
“Or sink,” Alex added.
“Right, thanks, let’s not forget the sink.” Sam rolled his eyes. “Anyway, we don’t have a clue where the hell the seal is, or what the demons plan to do, we don’t even have a semblance of a crappy plan in place.”
“Relax,” Alex said, “I’m sure if we put our minds together we can figure this out.” She took another layer of deli meat off of Dean’s sandwich and ate it.
“Hey!” Dean put a protective hand over his shrinking sandwich, “stop molesting it. It’s rude.”
“Is this how you go about in preventing one of the seals from being broken?” Said a gruff voice.
They all turned and looked at Castiel who suddenly appeared in the back of the room. He was dusting off his khaki colored trench coat and looking at the group in irritation. Angels really were the most irritable creatures. So much for harps, feathers, and love.
“It kinda would be helpful if you gave us a freaking clue as to what the hell is going on, and where exactly the seal is,” Dean said.
“It’s by the old oak tree next to the well. Of course.”
“Oh right,” Dean nodded, “Of course, how silly of us…” he glanced at his brother, “it’s by the old oak tree next to the well.”
“Right,” Sam said, “like there isn’t a dozen oak trees on this property.”
“Yes. But only one well,” Castiel pointed out, “and you might want to hurry. You have about two hours before they start to gather. They start at sundown.”
“Care to explain just how we’re supposed to prevent the seal from breaking?” Dean looked at the now empty spot, “Cass? Ah hell. Can you believe him?” He turned to Sam, and then glanced around the room, “where’d Alex go?”
Sam looked around and shook his head. “No idea.”
“Great,” Dean picked up his sawed off rifle, and grabbed his brother’s arm. “C’mon, let’s go try to find some kind of map or something to this place. There must be 50 acres of land here. We don’t have the luxury of roaming it trying to find some old well.”
“Remember what that lady said to us?” Sam pointed out. “About a fire destroying all the records of this place? I doubt we’re going to find some map of the land here.”
“Yeah, well, I remember that lady being possessed by a demon, and hiding the bones of her knife-wielding ancestor in order to keep this place haunted. By the way, that lady is now dead in the basement. So I’m not going to be taking her word on anything.”
“Yeah, ok. You got a point.” Sam picked a small cast-iron skillet hanging on a hook above the stove, “we should split up and see if we can find any records. I’ll do a quick search on the internet and see if I can dig up anything there.”
“Ok, are you planning on cooking us up an omelet?”
Sam just stared at his brother. “Um, what?”
“The skillet, what’s up with the skillet?”
“Oh. Right. Yeah, I have no idea what I did with the iron crowbar. And if I get another visit from our little friend, then this…” he raised the skillet, “will work just as well.”
“Huh. Ok. Well, I’ll check the offices and you go do your nerdy thing on the computer.”
“Remember Dean,” Sam said before taking off for his laptop, “We’re on a time crunch.”
“Yeah, yeah…” Dean mumbled to himself while heading towards the front desk to go rummage through drawers. “It’s always got to be a freaking apocalypse.”
Sam had clicked through half a dozen websites and came up empty. He’d even hacked into the Greenwood City Hall archives, and still, he’d had nothing to go on. The place just didn’t exist on record. He slammed his laptop shut, and went to go find his brother. Maybe he’d had some better luck. Still mindful of the ghost, he picked up the iron skillet, and headed towards the front desk.
“Dean?” Sam said slipping behind the wooden counter. “Dean, are you back there?” He stepped inside the back office and looked around at the open file cabinets, and strewn papers. Dean had definitely been here alright.
Sam glanced around and then stopped cold when he saw a splattering of blood against a manila envelope.
“Dean!” Sam yelled. He glanced at the blood and then carefully examined the rest of the room. There was nothing else there.
His brother was missing, Alex was missing, and by the clock on the wall they had only an hour left to stop the seal from being broken.
This was not good. Not good at all. He glanced at the window and saw the sky lit up with orange and pinks. The sun was slowly setting. To hell with the apocalypse. He had to find his brother.
Alex sighed. “Really? You’ve been to hell and this hurts you?” She dabbed the rubbing alcohol into the deep knife wound on Dean’s arm.
Dean snatched his arm back, “hell yes that hurts!”
“The ghost really is a damn nuisance.” Alex said tossing Dean a roll of gauze. “Wrap that wound up.”
Dean caught it and glared at her. “And just where the hell…or heaven…have you been?”
“Finding out where the old well is on this land.”
“Care to explain how you did that?”
“By eavesdropping on some demons.”
“Pardon?” Dean said pausing in mid-wrap with the gauze.
“While Castiel made his guest appearance for the night, I slipped out the back and used my super powers to sniff out some demons. They are here. A lot of them are here already, but have yet to gather around. They are waiting.”
“Waiting for what?”
“Sundown? I don’t know. But there’s a lot of activity going on at the south end of the property. There’s a few oak trees there, and I’ll put money on the well being next to one of them.”
“Uh-huh,” Dean finished wrapping his arm, “and you just happen to find this, come back to the inn just in time to salt the ghost who stuck his knife in my arm?”
“Pretty much. Consider yourself lucky, and you’re welcome.”
The kitchen door flew open and Sam came running in with the cast iron skillet raised high in his hands. When he saw Dean and Alex he froze, too surprised to speak.
Alex lifted up a shapely brow, and stared at him.
Dean’s lips twitched into a bemused smile. “I know there’s a joke in this, but damned if I’m not drawing a blank on this one.”
Sam dropped the skillet and walked over to his brother, eyeing the white gauze wound tightly over his forearm. “What the happened?”
“The ghost skewered me while I was looking at files.”
Sam looked at Alex. “Where did you go?”
“I snooped around some demon activity and found the location of the well.”
“I was yelling your name Dean, why the hell didn’t you answer me? I saw the blood, and thought…”
“I’m fine Sammy,” Dean stood up. “but I definitely have a vendetta I owe that bastard ghost – you know – after we make sure the seal stays unbroken.”
Sam nodded. “Right. Ok. Where is the seal?”
Alex looked at the boys, “Y’all better stock up and follow me. It’s time we get this party started…”
to be cont...
seascaping - March 28, 2011 11:24 PM (GMT)
The three of them clustered together around a large thick bush, and stared at the crumbling bricks that littered the ground underneath the oak tree.
"So. That's it?" Dean asked. "That's one of the gateways to hell?"
"What were you expecting?" Alex said, “A billboard sign of an arrow pointing down with a caption reading, 'one way trip'?"
"Something like that," Dean looked over at Sam, "you're awfully quiet. What's going on in that head of yours?"
"I'm wondering where the demons are."
"Preparing themselves I guess,” Alex said, "we have a little over half an hour before this place is crawling with them."
"Dean?" Sam said watching the demons swarm around them, "this is not good."
"No kidding." Dean aimed his gun, but didn't shoot. Firing it was useless against demons, just as useless as Sam's knife. "We're screwed,” he said.
The two of them stood helplessly as the demons moved around them to get to the well, only stopping when they reached the salt line. The flames on candles grew larger and brighter, and the symbols on the tree began to glow white. The demons, unable to cross, just stood there around the well, silent. It was as if they had one consciousness, one single thought, like they were all puppets connected to the same string. But the question was – who was pulling the strings?
Sam looked over at the Priest. He was just standing there, staring at all the protective symbols, while the demons stood like statues.
"This is weird,” Sam said, “I've never seem demons act this way."
"Me either." Dean tried to see the well, but couldn’t. "What's Alex doing?"
"I don't know." Sam saw the Priest raise his hand and the demons parted like the red sea to make a path for him. Sam knew that the priest was going to walk over the salt line. He was going to be the one to break the seal, and Sam couldn’t let that happen. He lunged forward with his knife, no plan, but all action backed by a single thought: he had to stop him.
"Sam!" Dean tried to hold his brother back but it was too late, he’d already reached the Priest, Sam’s knife was now hilt deep in the Priest’s back.
The Priest turned around, utterly unfazed by the knife jutting out from his back, and placed a hand on Sam's forehead. He mumbled a few words, and Sam dropped to the ground, unconscious.
In an instant, Dean was at his brother's side, but before he could do anything, the demons had turned around, their black eyes on him now.
He stood up, and raised his gun. "You sons of bitches," he said unloading every round he had into as many as he could. When the gun clicked empty, he dropped it, and started swinging punches. But he was taking more hits than giving them, and then finally, he fell down next to his brother, a bloody mess, and blacked out.
Alex’s protective chants were failing. She could feel the barrier disintegrating. She opened her eyes and was surprised to see a tall man dressed in black, wearing a white collar around his neck - a priest. He stepped over the salt line, passed the candles, and stood at the edge of the well. He stared at her and smiled.
"Who are you?" She asked.
"Cthulhu," he said.
"Ka-thoo-loo?" She shook her head, "you’re not a demon."
"No. I am the Priest of The Great Old Ones." He raised his hand and began to chant something in a language she had never heard before, and she had heard them all.
The ground began to shake, and a hot wind burst through the well blowing the candles out, and scattering the salt line. She glanced at the symbols she had drawn, and saw them fading, and finally, they disappeared altogether. It was unlike anything she had ever seen. All protection was lost, and the demons were rushing forward to use their collective power to break the seal.
She could feel the portal opening. Felt hell tugging at her once again. She looked over at Sam and Dean. They were both were unconscious, maybe even dead, and the seal was breaking. She had no choice. If she was going to stop this, she would have to resort to the one thing she was terrified of doing.
She glanced at the priest who had reached behind his own back and pulled out the knife that was stuck there. He dropped it to the ground, and continued chanting. Alex grabbed the knife, turned her left hand over to reveal the smooth white skin of her wrist, and slit it open. Blood poured down her arm and she used it to paint a circle around the well. The priest was too busy chanting the ritual for breaking the seal to notice what she was doing.
And then she began to chant as well. "In nomen of Deus Volo ut vindico illa everto in abyssus.” She said it over and over again, while using her blood as an offering. She then summoned up every power she’d ever acquired, and channeled it into the protective seal, binding it back together. She still allowed the portal to hell to open, but under her command. She raised her voice, shouting out the final words as loud as she could, "Everto Ego voco vos tergum ut abyssus is prodigium mos propinquus!"
And then a black, thick cloud rose off the ground like a mist, and she felt herself being pulled upwards in it. She saw her body slumped across the ground, and felt the hot wind blowing out from the portal. It twisted and funneled into a tornado sweeping all the disembodied demons together, along with her own soul, and finally it sucked it all back into the portal like a vacuum. The portal was now closed, and the seal remained intact. Nothing was left but her vacant body, and Sam and Dean’s unconscious ones.
The people the demons had possessed were mere ashes. Their bodies were unable to be saved, but their souls were at least free.
The Priest was hunched forward, weakened greatly. Without his demons, he could barely hold his human form. He had no choice but to use what little power he had to return to the dark waters of his home. He took one long weary look around before his eyes settled onto the brothers who lay on the ground. They were breathing, but damaged. He memorized their essence. He would come back for them, and the girl, even if he had to dig her out of hell himself, he would seek his revenge.
He said one more chant, and then finally, he too disappeared in a funnel of wind that swept away the ashes.
Sam pried his eyes open and faced the darkness of night. He pushed himself off the ground, and then glanced beside him. What he saw made his blood run cold. There, sprawled out like a broken rag doll, was his brother.
“Dean!” He fell back down to his knees, turned his brother over, and saw the broken nose, swollen eyes, and deep cuts along his cheeks. “No, no, no…” he searched for a pulse, and was relieved to find one beating, but it was a mere whisper of a pulse, so faint it barely qualified. “Castiel!” He waited for a moment, and then screamed again, “you bastard, get down here. Now!”
He clutched at his brother. “C’mon Dean, hang in there. Hang in there!” He looked around the darkness and yelled again, “Cass! Damn it!”
He then heard leaves rustling and a man in a trench coat appeared before him. Cass turned his head to the side and examined the slumped over figure of Dean being held up by his brother. He bent down, placed his index finger on the center of Dean’s forehead, and Dean’s pummeled face healed, and his heart began to beat stronger.
Dean coughed and sucked in a deep breath. “What the hell…” he looked up at his brother who was still holding on to him. “Sam. Stop being gay.” He pushed his brother off of him and stood up. “What happened?”
“You were almost dead, that’s what happened.” Sam grabbed his brother’s shoulders, “and it scared the crap out of me. Don’t do that again.”
“Aw, you were worried about me.”
“Well, you looked like Rocky at the end of the fight with Apollo Creed, except you were unconscious. So yeah. I was worried.”
Dean touched his face, felt the smooth skin of his forehead, and the stubble along his cheek, “Well Adrian, I’m back now, where’s Alex?”
Sam looked over to where Castiel stood by Alex’s limp body. “Oh no.”
The both rushed over and saw Cass shake his head, all he said was, “she’s gone.”
“Gone? What do you mean gone?” Dean knelt down and saw the deep cut along her right wrist, and the dried, crusted blood on her arm, and finally he noticed the circle of blood around the well. “She’s not dead.”
“Yes. She is,” Castiel said, “I’m sorry.”
“No. She can’t die because she’s indestructible. We both saw her arm heal. She told us she couldn’t die.” Dean stepped closer to Castiel, “she said she had a deal with heaven, or whatever, so she can’t be dead.”
“Then bring her back to life.”
Castiel reached his hand inside her chest and felt around for Alex’s soul. It was gone. “Her soul's in hell.”
“Then go fetch it out!”
Cass stood still for a moment, sighed, and then said, “Fine,” and vanished.
Dean knelt down, scooped Alex’s small body into his arms, and stood back up.
“Dean,” Sam watched his brother, his worry returning, “we don’t know what she did, but whatever it was, it stopped the seal from breaking, and sent the demons and whoever it was controlling them away. That’s a lot, even for her, so I’m not sure she’s coming back.”
“She’s coming back,” Dean said and started walking toward the Inn.
“Alright,” Sam said, “She’s coming back…” he had no choice but to follow his brother.
to be cont..
seascaping - March 31, 2011 01:24 AM (GMT)
Dean shifted Alex's limp body in his arms as he climbed up the front steps that led to the porch. When he reached the front door, he kicked it open, and stepped inside Magnolia Inn’s lobby. It was dark and quiet. All he heard was his own footsteps echoing across the hardwood floors. He spotted an uncomfortable looking antique couch, and headed for it. Glancing down at Alex’s pale face, all he could feel was anger. Too many have died, and too much had been sacrificed. He was tired of it. Tired of it all. He laid her down on the couch, knelt beside her, and tried to find a pulse. But there was none.
A heavy thud made him jump. He turned around and saw that Sam had dropped his duffel bag onto the floor. He gave Dean an apologetic smile for the noise, but Dean ignored it, he just turned back around, his attention on Alex.
Sam watched his brother fuss over her. He was worried. He'd never seen him act like this before. Especially not over a girl. But somehow, in the short time they had known Alex, Dean had developed more than just his customary feelings of lust. He genuinely seemed to care for her.
Dean stood up, yelled for Castiel, and then started to pace across the Persian rug. He glanced over at Sam and then Alex, and then back at Sam, before he finally stopped pacing and said, “What the hell happened back there?"
"I don't know," Sam looked down at the lifeless Alex on the couch and hoped to God Cass would be able to bring her back to life. "Last thing I remember is stabbing the Priest."
"Cass!" Dean shouted one more time, and then walked back over to Alex. "I don't get it. She can't die. Didn't she say that to us? So how is it that she's not breathing? And dammit! Where the hell is Cass?"
"Dean, calm down. Cass will be here, you just have to be—look out!” Sam pushed his brother out of the way of a long silver knife.
"Oh you've got to be freaking kidding me!" Dean said staring at the ghost. "I don't have time for this."
Sam scurried over to his bag, unzipped it, and took out the sawed off shotgun, he loaded it, and ran back over to his brother. "Duck!"
Dean bent down giving Sam a clear shot of the ghost. When a blast of rock salt hit it, it reverted back into a white wisp of nothing, and then disappeared altogether.
Dean looked back at Sam. "I'm really getting tired of us shooting that thing with salt."
"I know. Me too," Sam reloaded the gun and gave it to Dean, "the bones have to be inside the Inn. I'm gonna find them, you stay here with Alex, and wait for Cass."
"You take the gun," Dean said handing it back.
Sam shook his head. "No, I’ll grab the iron poker,” he nodded over to where it lay beside the kitchen door, “I'll be fine." He picked up his duffel bag, and hoisted it to his shoulder.
Sam turned around. "Yeah?"
"You too." Sam picked up the poker, held it tightly in his left hand and disappeared down the basement stairs. He figured it was a good a place as any to look.
Dean turned on the lamp beside the couch. Its yellow light spilled across Alex’s pale face, and made her red hair glow. She seemed so fragile, a slip of a girl, nothing but skin and bones and the usual curves in all the right places. She was pretty. Maybe even beautiful. But he had seen prettier, and he had screwed beautiful before. It wasn’t her looks that caught his interest, no it was something else.
He pushed her right shirt sleeve up to her shoulder and saw the red hand print. The same mark he had on him. She had been to hell, and back, and lived to tell the tale. And apparently, she was making an encore appearance in the fiery pit tonight. She had power, attitude, and a wit he could appreciate, and more courage than he’d ever seen. She wasn’t just a pretty face.
He glanced up at the ceiling and screamed, “Cass!” once more.
“I’m here,” said a gravelly voice behind him.
“Well it’s about damn time. Did you get her soul back?”
“Yes,” Castiel said carrying a black suitcase over to Alex. He opened it, and a bright, bluish- white light filled the room. He lifted the light up into his hands and then placed it inside her chest. Once the soul was back where it should be, Castiel put his index finger on her forehead, and Dean watched as the cut on her wrist vanished. He felt for a pulse, and found one there, beating strong. But still, she lay unmoving.
“Son of a bitch!” Sam said as he was thrown into a bookcase. He had dropped the poker somewhere in-between of getting his ass kicked and getting the crap beaten out of him.
The ghost was fully formed, and fully pissed. His knife even seemed to grow longer, and it was about to slice off something that Sam damn well knew he wanted to keep. He pushed himself off the floor, and crawled over to where he had dropped the poker. He grabbed it, swung it, and missed.
“Oh fu--” the word was cut off by the ghost’s rampant shriek as it picked up Sam and hurled him across the room. Sam’s foot busted through the drywall, and he was pretty sure he broke something, or maybe twisted the ankle that was now stuck in the wall. This wasn’t going well. He sucked in a sharp breath as he removed his foot from the wall, looking up just in time to see the sharp end of a knife heading towards his neck. As Sam scrambled for the iron poker, he saw part of a hidden panel behind the busted bookcase. He picked up the poker, and then headed towards the panel, ignoring the pain in his foot, hand, and everywhere else, he used the poker as a crowbar to pry the lock off.
“Son-of-a-bitch,” Sam muttered. There, incased in cobwebs, inside a secret panel in the wall, were the yellowing bones of what could only belong to the ghost.
“Why isn’t she awake?” Dean asked.
“She used up all her energy, all of her power to make sure the seal remained unbroken. She performed the self-sacrificing ritual to vanquish the demons. I’m not sure she will wake up. But she might, maybe she just needs time to recharge.”
“Fine. Recharge her then. Make her the freaking energizer bunny. Just fix her.”
“I can only do so much.” Cass said, “I was lucky that her soul hadn’t been submerged too far into the depths of hell. I caught it before anyone noticed it was even there.”
Another loud crash could be heard through the closed basement door. Dean frowned. “I think that was Sam’s way of asking for help. Stay here with Alex,” he said picking up the shotgun,” I’ll be right back.”
Dean headed down the carpeted basement stairs and picked up speed when he heard his brother yelling out in pain.
“Sammy!” He crashed into the basement, gun raised, adrenalin pumping, only to find Sam warming his hands by the nice fire he had going by the busted bookcase.
Sam looked up at his brother and grinned. “Nothing ends a crappy night quite like toasting a ghost.”
“Sam,” Dean said eyeing his brother carefully.
“You look like crap warmed over.”
And he did. Sam’s face was busted, he was limping, and there was a long jagged cut across his forearm. “That ghost was a bitch.” He said as he limped over to his brother, “how’s Alex?”
Dean took a hold of Sam’s arm and helped him to the stairs. “She’s back on the soul train, but apparently there’s nothing running the caboose.”
“She’s still out.”
“Oh.” Sam winced as he climbed up the stairs, “I’m sorry.”
“Are you going to put out the fire?”
“Alright. Burn Inn burn.”
The boys stumbled their way into the lobby. “Cass,” Dean said, “Sam needs help.”
Castiel looked up at Sam and Dean. “I’m not your personal medic.”
“Tonight you are,” Dean said, “So fix up my brother.”
Sam limped his way into an arm chair and looked over at Cass. “He meant to say please with that.”
Cass walked over, placed his finger on Sam’s forehead, and a warm glow traveled throughout Sam’s body, vanishing all the aches and pains.
“Thanks,” Sam said, “how’s Alex?”
“I’ve done all I can do. She’ll either wake up, or not. I’ve got to go now.”
“Go where?” Dean asked.
But Cass was already gone.
“Seriously, that dude needs to learn how to say goodbye.” Dean turned to look at Alex. Sam stood up and walked over.
“Dean, you know, she might not wake up.”
“She’s waking up,” he said with absolute conviction.
“I know you think that, but you have to be prepared that it might not happen.”
“No. I mean, she’s waking up now.” Dean watched as Alex’s eyes fluttered open and then blink a few times.
She turned her head and smiled up at the boys, “Well, that was unpleasant.”
“Thank God,” Dean said letting out a sigh of relief. “What were you thinking going back to hell? What? Was the first trip not good enough for you? You just had to go revisit the place?”
She scooted herself up into a sitting position. “Damn, this couch sucks.”
“It’s better than sitting in hell’s flames,” Dean said.
She rotated her neck and heard it pop. “I don’t know about that.”
“What happened tonight?” Sam asked. “What happened to all those demons, and that priest?”
“The priest,” Alex sighed, “Now that was unexpected.”
Dean looked at Sam and then at Alex, “Ok, let’s just take a time out here for a moment shall we?” He looked down at Alex, “you were dead. You went to hell.”
She stared at him. “And your point?”
“How’re you doing? Any…” he waved his hands, “lingering side effects?”
She smiled. “You care. I’m touched, but I’m fine.”
“Yeah you’re touched, touched in the head…” Dean muttered.
Sam rolled his eyes. “Ok, back to the priest. We need to know what happened.”
“The priest crossed over the salt line and protective charms,” Alex said, “Crossed over them like they weren’t even there. So he wasn’t a demon.”
“Then what was he?” Dean asked.
“He said his name was Cthulhu, called himself The Priest of The Great Old Ones.”
Sam frowned. “Are you sure?”
Dean looked at his brother, “What? Does that mean something to you?”
“Cthulhu is the monster the H.P. Lovecraft wrote about.”
“You’re saying this thing is a work of fiction that’s come to life?” Dean shook his head, “Is that possible? And why is it working with the demons?”
“Maybe it isn’t fiction. Maybe Lovecraft wrote about something real. And to me, it looked like it was controlling the demons.” Sam shook his head, “I need to re-read Lovecraft and brush up on whatever lore there is on this thing.”
Dean turned to Alex, “Did it say anything else?”
She shook her head, “Just started performing the ritual to break the seal. That’s when I started to counteract it with a ritual of my own.”
“That got you killed,” Dean pointed out, “and what the hell? I thought you couldn’t die.”
She shrugged. “I can’t, at least, nothing can kill me, the only thing that can is my own hand. But it guarantees me a spot in hell.”
“Suicide?” Dean raised his eyebrows. “Really? You can kill yourself.”
“Suicide is a break in the contract you have with God. We all signed up for life, and if we take a short cut, the results aren’t pleasant. It’s a one way trip to hell. But I had to use my life in order to keep that damn seal closed,” she swung her feet off the couch and stood up.
She wavered a bit on her feet and Dean steadied her, “maybe you should sit back down.”
“No. I’m fine. Castiel made sure of that. He wouldn’t want to lose one of his assets.”
“I asked him to help you,” Dean said.
“Oh, he would’ve helped me whether you asked or not.”
“Are you sure about that?” Sam asked.
“Oh yeah. I’m sure.” She stretched out her arms, it felt good to be up and moving again. “Well boys,” she looked at them and smiled, “it’s been fun.”
“What’re you talking about?” Dean frowned.
“The job’s done. Time to move on.” She glanced around the lobby, “or is it? Did the two of you manage to get rid of that ghost? And is something burning?”
Sam shrugged, “Yeah, the ghost is gone. And soon the Inn will be too.”
“Alrighty then,” she dug a set of keys out of her jeans, “I’m off.”
“Wait,” Dean took a hold of her arm, “you’re leaving just like that?”
“Don’t worry,” she said playfully slapping his cheek, “I’ll be seeing you boys around.” She turned and headed for the door giving them a half wave on her way out.
They followed her, and watched as she climbed onto her motorcycle and drive off into the night.
“Huh,” Sam said.
“Yeah,” Dean said, “well, Sammy, hows abouts we get the hell out of hick town?”
“That’s the best damn thing you said all day.”
ONE MONTH LATER
“Oh, you’ve got to be freaking kidding me!” Dean yanked his brother out of the dark corridor and took cover beside an old ice machine, “please tell me that’s not what I think it is.”
Sam peaked around the corner and stared at the black cloaked figure with skin like sandpaper. The creature saw Sam and reached out its long talon like fingers. Sam shrank back behind the ice machine. “Yeah. I think that’s the sandman.”
“The Sandman?” Dean said, “Like, the Sandman, the dude who gives you dreams--”
“Nightmares in this case,”
“Nightmares, whatever, how do we kill it?”
“I don’t know. But what’s it doing at the Misty Moon Lodge?”
“Misty Moon, sandman, I don’t need to be a freaking thesaurus to figure out there’s a connection here,” he pulled Sammy further into the hallway, “look out!”
The long claw jutting out from one of the Sandman’s fingers brushed across Sam’s arm.
Dean unloaded his 9mm into the thing’s face and grabbed his brother, “run!”
The boys crossed into another hallway and headed towards a couple of soda machines. “This is getting old.” Sam said examining the long scratch mark across his arm, “We need to kill it.”
“Well. Duh.” Dean rolled his eyes, “salt rounds aren’t working, and bullets aren’t working, got any ideas? Cause I’m more than willing to hear them now.”
“Shhh!” Sam hissed, “I hear something.”
They both strained their ears listening to the light footsteps coming around the corner. They both looked at each other, nodded, and then jumped out in attack. They froze when they saw a familiar face with long red hair.
“Alex?” Dean said.
She smiled, cocked her head, and said, “You boys needin’ any help?”
Sam grinned, “Know how to kill a Sandman?”
“Oh,” she shrugged, “I know a trick or two…”
(Intro to Enter Sandman Plays as the ending credits roll…)
Enter Sandman, click to listen!
This was hella fun to write! I might just revisit the world of Supernatural and try my hand at another adventure of the boys, Alex, and Cass.
Raven524 - April 1, 2011 05:22 PM (GMT)
Nicely done :hi5 I enjoyed reading it from beginning to end. I hope you'll dabble again soon ;)
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