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When Angels Fall
, One brother makes a deadly bargain
Member No.: 4,280
Joined: 29-April 06
Hi Guys - sorry I have been away for a while- will catch up on everyones fics soon I promise.....
When Angels Fall
This is my Secret Santa fic for Kaly from SFTCOL(AR)S – Merry Christmas! – I hope you enjoy this. This has kind of grown into a multi-chapter one – I hope you don’t mind –and I will update as quickly as possible.
My sincere and heartfelt gratitude to Geminigirl and Catbeist for being wonderful Beta’s and giving me terrific support- especially when I read everyone else’s contributions and began to panic – thanks guys!
Also thank you to the faNily for keeping me cheerful and sane though a rather difficult patch – you guys are great! Merry Christmas!
One brother makes a bargain that may ultimately cost the Winchesters more than they are willing to pay. This will be slightly AU as will eventually include John, Caleb and Pastor Jim.
Except in my dreams and until that Tulpa starts working - I own nothing Supernatural. They are Kripke’s - oh and while I’m on- how dare you Kripke! You had better tell us that secret soon you evil, evil genius you!
“Oh god no, please, no.” The hunter’s voice was begging, pleading, beseeching the night surrounding him. “This isn’t happening, this can’t be. Please God, don’t let this be real.” Tears fell, his despair crystallising into drops of liquid sorrow, raining down upon his fallen brother.
He looked down at the torn and broken body in front of him and reached out a trembling hand to touch the blood-smeared face. He was kneeling on the cold earth next to his brother, the oozing mud discoloured by his brother’s blood. The wounds were deep, fatal, the chest torn open by the savage blow that had smashed him into a tree and knocked him unconscious. In a way it had been a blessing; if he had been awake for those wounds, his death would have been agonisingly drawn-out, though equally as inevitable.
No, he can’t be dead. There has got to be something I can do… He pulled his brother’s body too him, wrapping him in the now futile safety of him arms and tucking his brother’s head under his chin as he rocked slowly back and forth.
“Please take it back.” His sobs became heartbreaking. “Don’t let him die, I’ll do anything, let me die instead, but please, please don’t take him away from me.”
He murmured, pleading in a litany of anguish, a prayer in desperation.
“Are you sure?” A woman’s soft voice came from behind him.
The hunter lifted his cheek from the top of his sibling’s head in to glance behind. He did not care that someone had managed to sneak up behind him unawares. He had already lost that which he valued most. “Sure?” He whispered in confusion, his voice flat, dead, broken.
“Would you willingly swap places with your brother?”
He didn’t hesitate. “In a heartbeat.”
The hunter looked up at the face before him, and although the features were in shadow, they were obviously female. The only feature that stood out were bright piercing blue eyes that gazed almost compassionately down at him,
“There is a price.”
“There always is.” The hunter acknowledged. “And frankly I don’t care. Can you save him?”
“Will he return unharmed, as he was - his soul intact?” He was desperate, but not stupid.
“Your brother will be the same good man he was before he died.”
“And how long will he live?”
She smiled, “How long is a piece of string? No-one can answer that – he will live his natural lifespan.”
“But he will be alone, with no-one to watch over him.” The hunter looked down at his brother, his eyes burning intensely with a mixture of hope, loss and desperation.
“I wouldn’t say that. I’m sure we can arrange something as part of our agreement.”
“Will I die straightaway?” The young hunter asked quietly. The woman was surprised at the complete lack of fear in his voice.
“Are you backing out already?” Disappointment coloured the woman’s words.
“No. I just don’t want my brother to know of the bargain. If he found out it would kill him.”
“Oh I think I know how to keep a secret. You’ll have exactly seven days from today – it’s a nice biblical number don’t you think? If God created the world in that amount of time, I am sure that should be long enough for your arrangements.”
The hunter paused, mentally calculating. “Christmas Eve?”
“11:43 Christmas Eve to be precise.” The figure confirmed.
“And the price?”
“A life for a life - your soul for his protection. And once the deal is struck there is no turning back.”
“I know.” And he did. He was entering this arrangement with his eyes wide open. It didn’t matter anyway. With his brother dead, he had lost everything. He wasn’t sacrificing anything he wasn’t prepared to lose; at least this way it served a purpose. “One condition, if my brother finds out, this deal is non-reversible – he cannot make the same one”
“A fair condition. Besides, it can get messy and you end up going in circles - agreed.”
“Can I ask your name so at least I know who I am selling my soul to?” There was power in names, he knew. He didn’t expect her to go back on her word, but there was the comfort of having one small bargaining chip he could hold onto.
“Laurel - but your soul will not be mine. I’m merely the negotiator.”
“So who am I making a deal with?”
“I cannot say. Client confidentiality. You will just have to take a leap of faith on this one. Would it change your decision knowing?”
The figure held out a hand. “So a deal?”
Unfaltering, Sam Winchester took her hand. “A deal.”
Dean drew in a shaky breath, the pain from earlier had eased and the darkness had faded from his vision. He opened his eyes to see Sam sitting over him, a look of tremendous relief crossing his expressive features.
“You’re back.” Sam sighed, his face lighting up with a grin so huge it could probably be seen from space.
“Did I go somewhere?”
“You really have to stop scaring me like that Dean.” Sam murmured.
“Wuss!” Dean looked closely at his younger brother’s face. He had obviously been crying. Jesus, just how close had it been? “You are such a girl sometimes.”
“What can I say, the thought of carrying your heavy ass back to the car was getting to me- I did consider just salting and burning you here…”
“You just want the car.”
“Was planning on throwing out the tape collection though.”
“You have no taste Sam.”
“I’m just waiting for you to grow your hair like Ash dude.”
Sam had been looking over Dean’s injuries. The bleeding had stopped and the wounds were no longer as deep as they had been. The lacerations were healing and although they would be painful, were no longer life threatening and he could no longer see sinew and tendon, bone and internal organs. He shuddered at the horror of the memory - he would be glad to never again look at so much destruction to his brother’s body.
“Are you quite finished eyeing my up, Princess?” Dean asked, eyebrows raised. What the hell is up with Sam? I’m not injured that badly.
Sam helped Dean to his feet. Heading towards the Impala and ignoring his brother’s protests that he could walk perfectly well on his own, he wrapped one arm tightly around his brother. Like hell was he going to see Dean fall ever again…
The figure watched them leave and with tears in her eyes turned to her companion.
“He made the deal.”
“He loves his brother so much.” She said softly.
“I’m counting on it.”
“He’s a good man. They’re both good men.”
“But his soul, are we really doing the right thing? He doesn’t deserve that.”
“It is the only way.”
“It’s risky; the timing will need to be perfect.”
“It’s necessary. They need to understand the price of sacrifice.”
“They seem to understand it better than most.”
“No, they understand the idea, the concept of sacrifice. They do not understand the cost.”
“And if they fail to learn?”
“Then they will lose everything.”
A/N – Kaly – hoping you like this so far!
Please read and review- looking forward to hearing what everyone thinks!
Updates should be fairly prompt and apologies to anyone waiting on an update on Lest We Forget – I will be returning to that after Christmas I promise. Just didn’t have time for both…sorry….
Great story! Can't wait for the update!
Member No.: 4,280
Joined: 29-April 06
Thanks Guys...well hoping you like this chapter - waits with baited breath.....
For Geminigirl – awesome Beta – this story is only better for your help – thank you!
Many thanks to Ridley C James for your fantastic stories – I have ‘borrowed’ your Caleb, he truly is a wonderful character, thank you so much for creating him and I hope that you are not disappointed in my imitation. Please let me know if you do not wish me to continue with him.
To anyone who has not read any of her work, please do so. She is simply one of the finest writers here and an inspiration.
One brother makes a bargain that may ultimately cost the Winchesters more than they are willing to pay. This will be slightly AU as will eventually include John, Caleb and Pastor Jim.
Still Winchesterless I’m afraid but still playing with them in the vain hope they may one day stay. Although Caleb is Kripke’s the version here is all Ridley’s – or at least as close as a far poorer writer could get him. So, thank you Kripke (and Ridley) for providing such wonderful characters!
The brothers had been holed up in the motel for a frustrating two days. Sam had dressed Dean’s wounds and the elder hunter was still fairly stiff and sore from the attack. Sam had wanted to make sure that no infection would set in before they hit the road, so he’d insisted they rest up for a couple of days.
Dean was never a good patient. He found it impossible to stay still for any length of time- except when he was hunting. Lying in wait, he could remain motionless for hours, but forced to stay indoors and relatively immobile, he was driving his brother to distraction.
So Sam had devised a plan. An idea had come to him that would not only help Dean rest and recover, but would also mean that Dean would have the support he would need for when the bargain was collected.
He knew his death would hit his brother hard so the least he could do was make sure that Dean was somewhere safe and had friends around him.
He had been deliberately pushing thoughts of the pact from his mind, instead focussing on making sure Dean was recovering. But now, he realised that time was fast running away from him. Only five days remained.
“Dean, I’ve been thinking.” Sam had adopted his most persuasive tone.
“Always a dangerous move for you Sammy.”
Sam ignored him. “We’re not far from Pastor Jim’s.”
“Well it is Christmas next week, dude.”
“Again, and?” Dean looked in confusion at his brother.
“Why don’t we see if we could spend it there?”
“You are not dragging me to church, Sam”
“Real home-cooked food…” Sam knew which buttons to start pressing. “And there’ll be a few of us there, so Pastor Jim won’t be going out of his way just for us.”
“How do you know that? – You’ve arranged it already, haven’t you?”
“It’ll give us time to recover from that last hunt.” Time to say goodbye…
“Yeah, but Sam you know how the supernatural stuff always picks up over the holiday season.”
“I’ve already thought of that – there’s what looks to be a poltergeist less than two hours from the church. Caleb was going to do it but he was held up on another hunt.”
“He’s hunting on his own?”
“No, I think Joshua is with him.”
“Probably best – remember that last solo hunt he did when the poltergeist knocked him out of the window?” Dean shook his head at the memory – Caleb had been lucky.
“That wasn’t his fault Dean – he had a vision half-way through the hunt.”
“Yeah, of being thrown through the window – talk about a self-fulfilling prophecy.” And Sam wonders why I worry…
Sam turned his patented puppy dog look on him…damn. “Fine Sam – if you’ve set your heart on a Walton Family Christmas, we’ll go.” Dean sighed.
“More like the Addams Family.” Dean had to laugh – it was pretty much true.
“Dude, you are so Wednesday.”
“Take it you’re Pugsley then?” Sam asked innocently.
Dean snorted – “So who’s Uncle Fester?”
“Caleb”. They both said in unison and burst out laughing.
Sam felt a pang of something, not fear – more like loss. He was going to miss Dean, in more ways even than he’d realized. He always could make him smile when no-one else could.
“So should I ring him and let him know we will definitely be there?” he asked hopefully.
“Sure Sammy.” Dean tried to make himself sound resigned, but Sam heard a tinge of excitement in his voice. Dean was looking forward to the break, too.
Sam grinned, took out his phone and dialled the familiar number. The phone was answered quickly. “Pastor Jim?”
“Sammy? Good to hear your voice again so soon.”
“Is it still ok for Dean and me to stay for Christmas?”
“You should know by now that the both of you are always welcome here. Need I expect any trouble?”
Sam felt a small pang of guilt. “No worse than usual.” He lied. “Dean was a bit bloodied and bruised on the last hunt but he’ll live.” Sam refused to lie more than necessary to the priest. At least he could get away with some half-truths.
“Have you heard from Caleb?” Sam asked deliberately changing the subject.
“He’s still working.”
“Oh? Our kind of work?”
”Isn’t it always –he’s come across a Daeva in Montana while he was out there on that last hunt.”
“Daeva?” Sam shuddered and Dean looked at him with concern, both remembering their last encounter with Meg and hers.
“Don’t worry Sam – Caleb remembers what you boys did with the flares if things get tricky. So, when will you boys be here?”
“The day after tomorrow, probably.”
“Will keep an eye out for you then – take care of yourselves Sammy.”
“You too, Pastor Jim.”
“Isn’t it about time you called me Jim? I promise no one will smite you for it.” He was rewarded by a soft chuckle from the young hunter.
“Fine, Jim. See you later.”
The Pastor hung up the phone slightly troubled. He couldn’t put his finger on it, but for some reason he felt that Sam was being less than completely honest with him. And that was out of character for the younger brother – at least with those he was close to.
Sam was holding something back.
His phone went again – “I really should think about installing a switchboard or something.” He sighed.
“Caleb – I was just thinking about ringing you.”
“What have I told you about reading people?”
“To only do it for profit?”
Jim could hear his friend’s grin. “You are incorrigible, Cal.”
“Certainly try my best, Jim. So what were you thinking of ringing me for?”
“Are you definitely swinging by here for Christmas?”
“Church numbers falling Jim?”
“No it’s the Winchesters.”
“What’s wrong?” Instantly Caleb dropped his flippant demeanour and became serious.
“Sam called me out of the blue and asked if he and Dean could stay.”
“That’s not really that unusual is it?”
“Aside from the fact I haven’t heard from Sam in a couple of years and he and Dean haven’t stayed since he was 17? There’s something wrong Cal – Sam sounded wrong.”
“You mean possessed?” Shit - had the demon gotten though after all?
“No, nothing like that Cal.” I hope.” Sam is hiding something. I know Dean was injured on the last hunt.”
“Again no - You know how the lad gets with Dean – he’s a born worrier but he seemed convinced Dean was fine. It’s something else.”
“You want me to call him, see if I can pick anything up?”
“No, the boys will be here in a day or so. If Sam figures you’re fishing, he might decide to bail on us. He seemed skittish.”
“The kid always was highly strung Jim.” Caleb was also uneasy; Jim wasn’t exactly easily fazed. “Tell you what, Joshua can finish up here. Mike’s here too, and it really doesn’t need three of us. I can get there tomorrow. Don’t tell the brothers yet – I want to surprise them.” Because if I surprise them, I might be able to pick up more than if they have time to put up any defences.
Sam and Dean were putting their gear into the Impala – Sam fussing over his brother a lot like a mother hen.
“Pack it in Sam.”
“Pack what in?”
“I’m not an invalid,” though Dean did still feel strangely weaker than he would have thought, more tired, as if he was recovering from something much worse than the injuries he had sustained.
“You’ve had me fetching and carrying for you all day.” Sam said with some exasperation.
“That’s what baby brothers are there for- to run after their awesome older and far wiser big brothers.”
“I can’t believe you still pull that crap.”
“I can’t believe you still fall for it.” Dean smirked. He checked the trunk.
“Damn- forgot my phone.” At Sam’s annoyed look, he held up his hands, “Don’t worry, I’ll go for it.” He put on his best martyred look.
He started to saunter across the road, his mind not entirely alert, still fatigued and blurred from the painkillers, when he heard a sudden screech of tyres. He turned towards the sound and his eyes widened when he saw the van slewing across the street, skidding completely out of control across the half-frozen snow.
“Dean!” Sam screamed. The van was virtually on top of his brother. He would never get out of the way in time.
The van was millimetres away from Dean when it was abruptly swept away in the opposite direction to the skid and crashed into the wall of their motel.
“Dean, you ok?” Sam called, hurrying towards him...
“Fine- go check the driver.”
Reluctant to leave his brother, since he didn’t seem injured, Sam followed his command. He jogged across the road, catching a glimpse of a man standing on the pavement opposite, watching the scene intently. Slightly shorter than Sam and leaner, the man simply nodded a confirmation at the young hunter. Sam’s senses prickled. He could feel a power emanating from the man, a sense of swirling darkness. So at least he knew that whoever he had made his bargain with was at least keeping it. That the trade of his soul, for Dean’s life and continued protection, was being honoured.
Dean had also seen the other man and did not like the way his features had twisted into an almost proprietarily feral grin when he looked at Sam. Nor the way his features changed into a knowing sneer when he met Dean’s gaze. He turned away before Dean could say anything, though, walking quickly and taking the memory of his features with him.
More pressing matters took over Dean’s thoughts, and he shook his head to clear the fog. Just what the hell happened? There was no way the driver had regained control of the van in time, no possible way that he could do given the driving conditions.
Had Sam used telekinesis? Something had definitely occurred – that had been close.
He approached his brother- “Dude? Everything ok?”
“He’s drunk.” Sam muttered in disgust. “The creep could have killed you.”
“Easy tiger. He didn’t. Do I owe you thanks for, that by the way?” Dean chose his words carefully, not wanting to spook Sam with what he was thinking.
“What, um, no, I don’t think so.”
“You don’t think so?” Dean raised his eyebrows quizzically at Sam’s uncertain tone.
“Maybe the driver regained control?” Sam thought desperately.
“He’s passed out- and let’s face it, he doesn’t have control of his bladder let, alone anything else.” Dean noted the smell coming from the back of the van.
Either Sam had used telekinesis to push the van away from him or something equally freaky was going on. Maybe Sam doesn’t want to admit to another episode of telekinesis, he feels isolated enough…
Sam still hadn’t responded, and Dean prodded him a little more. “Sammy?”
“Maybe you have a Guardian Angel?”
Dean looked at his brother in disbelief. “If that’s the case, it’s being doing a piss-poor job all these years.”
“You’re alive, aren’t you?” Sam’s voice held an edge, an anger that seemed out of place. He visibly pulled himself together. “You’re fine and surely that is all that matters?” His voice now almost pleading, again sounding incongruous, as if he was talking about something else entirely.
Alarm bells started ringing – since when did Sam not want to know the far end of a fart anyway? The kid always picked at something until he knew the full truth; most of the time it was a facet that Dean admired, although at times it was bloody annoying.
“Let’s not look a gift horse in the mouth.”
“Christo?” Dean spoke quietly as Sam turned back to the car, effectively shutting the conversation down.
“What did you say Dean?”
“We should report this.” Sam’s arms took in the van and the bowed motel wall-it was amazing no-one had been hurt, or witnessed it for that matter. Maybe that was something else Dean had to be thankful for.
"Let’s not introduce ourselves to the local authorities if we don’t have to- we’ll call from a phone booth further out.” Dean was watching Sam carefully now. “Is everything ok, Sam?”
“Hmmm?” Sam was buying time.
“You don’t seem quite yourself.”
“Just tired I guess - been a hell of a year.” Sam smiled rather sadly. He felt awful laying a sympathy ploy on Dean, but had to put him off. “And you gave me quite a scare on that last hunt, not to mention all this. Just counting our blessings.”
“It wasn’t that bad.”
“It looked a lot worse at first from where I was.” Again Sam relied on that curious mixture of half-truth and deception to keep Dean from sensing the lie.
Dean had a nagging feeling that Sam was keeping something from him. “You always were a drama queen, Sam.”
“Yeah, that’s because you and Dad are emotionally stunted.”
Dean couldn’t really argue the point- the no chick-flick rule being his. He let the matter drop. For now.
They arrived at Pastor Jim’s late on the 23rd. Dean was still tiring easily and Sam, not wanting to hurry the trip, had taken his time. It had been nice to not be driving to a hunt for a change, even relaxing, despite the miles and hours behind the wheel.
They had even resumed their prank wars.
It had started harmlessly enough, with the radios turned loud, Dean’s mobile phone developing a fondness for Britney Spears’ ring tones in crowed biker bars, and a variety of super-glued items. The final prank was played on Dean when he had fallen asleep in the bath and involved some detergent, dry ice and a literal wall of soapsuds overtaking their motel room. Being barred from the Travel Inn chain of motels was the icing on a very tasty cake.
It had been three of the happiest days of Sam’s life. Both brothers had laughed until they had been nearly throwing up, and it had been nice to simply enjoy each other’s company and see the sights. They had still researched a little on the Pastor’s poltergeist, but they could relax knowing the Pastor would have done most of the real work. It felt good to be able to stop when they felt like it, to have relaxing evenings playing pool and darts for fun instead of for income. All in all, to have in reality a little of the “road trip with his brother” that had been their cover story since Sam had left Stanford.
The brothers had had time to talk and reminisce, and it simply reinforced Sam’s belief that he had made the right decision – that there was no way in hell he would have possibly survived the loss of his brother.
A/N…So still enjoying this I hope?
Thank you to everyone who has reviewed so far and please keep reading and reviewing, it is a fanfic writer’s only form of payment – you lawyers hear that? Not to mention greatly appreciated…
The next chapter is all written so will have it up on Sunday at the very latest…
Oh this was great!!! I loved the update!! Can't wait for the next!