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, Dean discovers a hidden talent.
Member No.: 989
Joined: 31-December 05
Summary: Dean discovers a hidden talent.
Disclaimer:Don't own, don't make any money from this.
A/N: Okay, I know I'm supposed to be working on the next chapter of Westcott (and I am I swear) but I spent most of today watching movies. One of them being Akeelah and the Bee and I had to write this.
Thirteen year old, Dean Winchester sat hunched over in his desk, doodling in his notebook. He knew he should be paying attention but all he could think about was the end of the day. He really wanted the day to end. Bobby had promised that he would take him and Sammy to the shooting range.
He and his brother were staying with Bobby for the school year. John was working several jobs, and he couldn't take the boys. It would have meant putting them in a different school every week. Bobby offered to take the boys so that they could have stability and John could see them whenever he was in the area.
"Okay, class," Mrs Clayton address her class of 7th graders. "We're going to do something a bit different this English class."
Dean perked up a little at that. "No poetry," he called out.
Angela Clayton resisted the urge to sigh and she regarded her newest student. He had just transfered in a few weeks ago and when he arrived at her class Angela pegged him as a trouble maker. He couldn't seem to take anything seriously and of the two assignments she had given had both been turned in late and he'd failed the first test he'd taken.
"I have some really good news. The Watertown Tribune has agreed to be our sponser this year, and we are going to attempt to qualify a student for the Scripps National Spelling Bee," Mrs. Clayton annouced.
"Mrs. Clayton," a girl in the front row spoke up. "Can anyone enter. I'd really like to."
"Yes, Elizabeth," Mrs. Clayton confirmed, pleased that Elizabeth wanted to participate. Elizabeth was the smartest kid in the class, and Angela Clayton's favourite.
Elizabeth smiled smuggly. Dean wanted to throw something at her.
"How many of you have participated in a spelling bee before?" the teacher wanted to know.
A few student put up their hands.
"Okay, so what were going to do today is have a practice round, just so you can get the feel of how it works. I have a list of words, they're all taken from your spelling lists that you've had this year. I need everyone to stand up." Angela paused and waited for everyone to stand up. "Now, I am going to give you a word. I want you to say the word, so I know you understood it. You can ask for a definition of the word, its language of origin, alternate pronouciations and to hear the word in a sentence."
"Can we ask how to spell it?" Dean asked. He couldn't help himself.
The teacher ignored him.
Dean decided that even if she gave him his own name, he was going to miss it on purpose. This wasn't his thing. It was Sammy's. He'd love this.
Dean smiled as he thought of this 9 year old brother. He was smart, way smarter than Elizabeth. He would probably win if he was there.
"Charlene Layne, your first and your word is entourage," Mrs. Clayton said.
Dean found that he knew how to spell a lot of the words that the teacher was giving out and it suprised the middle Winchester. School was not his thing.
Dean watched as they went around the room. Finally they got to him. "Dean, your word is Pharoah," Mrs Clayton said.
Dean smiled. He actually knew that one. "Pharaoh," Dean repeated. "P-h-a-r-a-o-h, Pharoah," he finished and gave the teach his own smirk. Stupid witch probably thought he'd spell it f-a-r-r-o-w.
The teacher looked at him in surprise. "That's correct. Mitchell, can you spell silicon," she said going on the the next student.
After the first round about 1/3 of the class had been eliminated. They started the second round. Dean, once again, deteremined to blow the round.
"Dean can you spell, stethoscope," Mrs. Clayton asked.
Again this was something Dean was familiar with. As a hunter-in-training, he'd been was no stranger to hospitals. "Stethoscope. S-T-E-T-H-O-S-C-O-P-E, stethoscope."
"Cor... Correct" she stammered.
Mrs. Clayton gave Dean Tsunami for his third word and he spelled it right again.
By the fifth round it was down to Dean and Elizabeth Watts, the teachers pet.
"Dean and Elizabeth, this will be like a sudden death. If one of you misses a word and the other spells theirs correctly they will be the winner. These words are going to get a little bit harder. Elizabeth your word is slalom.
"S-l-a-l-a-m-" Elizabeth answered.
Angela corrected her star pupil, a little disapointmented that she missed it "Dean, your word in magnanimous.
"Pardon me?" Dean said.
"Magnanimous," the teacher repeated.
He was determined to get this right. Okay, think Dean, he told himself. "Is it Latin," Dean asked?
"Yes," Mrs. Clayton confirmed.
Dean thought back to his study sessions with Pastor Jim. "Is it taken from the latin magnus meaning great, and the latin animus meaning spirit?" Dean asked. He was sure that was right. He could remember Pastor Jim telling him that.
"That's correct," Mrs. Clayton said, surprised that Dean knew that.
Suddenly the word flashed into Dean's mind. "M-a-g-n-a-n-i-m-o-u-s."
The teacher, once again looked at Dean in surprise. How the hell had he figured that out, she wondered.
"Very good, Mr. Winchester. Congratuations."
Dean couldn't help the sense of pride that washed over him. He had never won anything. "Does this mean I don't have to do any homework, tonight?" he asked.
Mrs. Clayton shook her head. "No. Tomorrow we are going to have another bee and this one counts. The winner gets to represent our class at the school spelling bee in two weeks time. The winner of that will go on to the district finals. You'll need a top 10 finish in the district competition in order to qualify for the regionals. If you finish in the top three at the regionals, you'll earn a spot in the Nationals, which take place in the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, DC."
"Do we have to participate, Mrs. Clayton?" a boy named Tommy asked.
"Yes," Mrs. Clayton said. "Everyone will participate in the class bee. If you win but are not interested in competing for a spot at nationals you can let us know and the option will be given to the student who finished second, and so on."
"I want to participate, Mrs. Clayton," Elizabeth said as if her winning was a forgone conclusion.
Dean bit his tounge. Bobby wouldn't be pleased with him if he had to make an extra trip back to pick up Dean if he got detention.
"That's good, Elizabeth," Angela said with a smile. "Now, I have a list of words that we'll be using for the class and school bee. There are about 500 on there, so make sure you study hard. The circuit is very competitive."
The teacher handed out the lists and sent the class on the way. Dean stuffed it in his backback and went to go pick up his brother. He had no intention of doing extra homework.
"Hey, Sammy, Dean," Bobby Singer greeted the two boys after school.
"Hi, Uncle Bobby," Sam greeted him enthusiastically and ran to him for a hug.
Dean was much more reserved as he greeted Bobby.
"Hey, guess what, Uncle Bobby," Sam said. "Our teacher said we have an assembly on Friday for the school spelling bee. Whats that?" Sam asked.
"It's like a game where you have to spell words. Whoever spells the most right wins."
"Can I play?" Sam asked. His excitement growing.
"It's for people in middle school, Sammy. You're not old enough."
Sam pouted and crossed his arms over his chest.
Bobby glanced that the middle Winchester. "What about your class, Dean. Are they taking part?"
"Yeah," he confirmed. "Thy're making us. We did a practice round today. Tommorrow it counts."
"How'd you do?" Bobby asked. He guessed that Dean purposely misspelled the word to get out of it.
Dean shrugged. "I won."
"Yeah, Dean," Sammy cheered.
"Congratulations, son," Bobby said sincerly. "Did they give you a list of words?"
"Yup," Dean said.
"I'll help you study if you want," Bobby offered.
"It's okay. It's not my thing," Dean said.
"Okay, if you change your mind let me know. Oh, boys one more thing. Pastor Jim's in town and will be joining us for dinner."
"Yeah," Sam cheered again. He loved Pastor Jim.
When they got home, the boys said hello to Pastor Jim and Bobby had the boys do their assigned chores and then, he took Dean to the salvage yard for awhile. He knew Dean loved learning about the engines. He than made the boys do their homework. Dean did his usual sloppy job and despite himself he found himself drawn to the list of spelling words
"What do you have there, Dean?" Pastor Jim asked.
"It's a list of words for a stupid spelling contest were having."
"Dean came first in the one they had today," Sam annouced proudly.
"That's great Dean."
Dean shrugged as if was no big deal. "It didn't mean anything."
"Are you in the one they have tomorrow?"
"They're making us," Dean explained. "It's stupid, I was just going to see if I can make a paper airplane."
"Let me see, Dean," Pastor Jim said and took the list from the elder Winchester's hands.
"Pastor Jim," Dean said in exasperation.
"Come on, Sam," Bobby said as he joined the others in the kitchen. "Help us quiz your brother."
"Kay," Sam said agreeibly.
"Bobby," Dean said again. "I can't do this."
"Why not? You're smart enough."
"I don't want to," Dean insisted.
"Just for fun. Look, I was in the spelling bee in the 7th and 8th grade. I made it to the regionals, were I finished 6 and 4th. I just missed the nationals. I bet you can't beat me," Bobby challenged.
"That's not fair, Uncle Bobby?" Sam said sticking up from his brother. "You're old."
"Old, am I runt," Bobby said picking up Sam and tickling him causing Sam to erupt in a fit of giggles.
"Help," he cried, looking toward his big brother.
"Okay," Dean said and started tickling Sammy along with Bobby.
Finally Bobby stopped and put Sam down. "Okay, Dean I'll give you an hour to look at the words and I'll be back. I won't study them since I'm old," he said with a wink at Sam.
Dean knew he had no choice but to agree. An hour later, Bobby showed up and sat down. Pastor Jim picked up the list and gave Dean the first word. "Abrasive," he said.
Dean spelled the word, and Pastor Jim asked Bobby to spell centaur.
It continued, Bobby and Dean keeping pace. They were tied 19 to 19. Pastor Jim told Sam he could pick the last two words. Bobby's was Xanthosis and he spelled it with a Z. Dean took a bit of pleasure in correcting him.
"Okay, Dean your word in chrysanthemum," Pastor Jim said.
"Jeez, Sammy you would have to give me a chick word," Dean complained.
"Spell it Dean," Sam encouraged.
"Um, C-h-r-y-s-a-n-t-h-e-m-u-m," Dean guessed.
"Dean wins," Pastor Jim said with a smile.
"Yeah, Dean," Sam said giving his brother a high five.
Dean really consdered playing sick the next day, but he knew that Bobby wouldn't believe him. When Dean showed up, Elizabeth gave a smug smile and informed Dean she studied every word and could spell them all.
Angela Clayton watched as her most troublesome student took his seat. She knew it wasn't fair but she wanted Elizabeth to win. Winning the national bee was something she had always wanted to do. She made it to nationals when she was in 8th grade but was out in the first round when nerves got the better of her. She really felt that Elizabeth would do really well, and that she would take it seriously so she tried to give Elizabeth the easier words. She deliberately gave Dean the hardest words on the list. She had a feeling that Dean would blow it off as a big joke. Imagine her surprise when Dean spelled every word correctly. Once again it came down to Elizabeth and Dean.
"Okay Elizabeth, your word is Rottweiler."
She was over confidant and spoke withouth thinking. "R-o-t-t-w-i-e-l-e-r," Elizabeth said.
"I'm sorry, thats not correct," Mrs. Clayton said trying to keep the disappointment out of her tone.
"Its R-o-t-t-w-e-i-l-e-r," Dean said smuggly.
"That is correct, Dean. Can you spell diocese?"
Dean give his smirk to Elizabeth. It paid to have a friend in the church. "D-i-o-c-e-s-e."
"Correct, Dean," she said stiffly, this time making sure she didn't sound disappointment. "You'll represent our class at the school bee, unless you don't want to."
Dean didn't want to. He was all set to refuse but, while he couldn't hear it in her tone, he could clearly see a look of disappointment on the teachers face and it made him mad. "I'll do it," he said, figuring he could just blow it then.
Sam was waiting for Dean outside his classroom. He hugged his brother when Dean told him that he won.
The first thing Sam did when he saw Bobby was run and hug him as well. "Dean won, Uncle Bobby."
"Thanks, Bobby," Dean said with a shrug
"He gets to compete in front to the whole school," Sam informed the elder mechanic.
Bobby looked at Dean. "You doin' this thing."
"I guess," he said. He didn't feel it necessary to tell Bobby he was planning to miss a word on purpose.
"It's a lot of work son. It means extra studying, before and after school You're going to be competing against kids that have been preparing for this since they were younger than Sammy."
Dean's face fell. What didn't Bobby think he could do it either. Did they not think he was capable.
He felt little hands encircle him again. "Dean's gonna kick their butt."
The elder Winchester sibling couldn't help but smile. "Thanks Sammy," he said softly.
Bobby could see the change come over the boy. "Dean, I think your smart enough to do well but I just wanted you to know what you were getting yourself in for."
"Tell you what, I'll help you," Bobby offered. "You guys can even be excused from your chores and we'll start right now."
"Can I help?" Sam wanted to know.
"I can't do this without you, little bro," Dean said and put his arm around his little brother.
The day of the school bee arrived. Dean couldn't ever remember working so hard in his life, which surprised him, since he was just participating to stick it to his teacher. Dean found that there was a lot more to it than just memorizing how to spell words. Bobby had told him, he would drive himelf crazy trying to, and spent a lot of time with Dean working on word construction and breaking down words, so ones he recognized.
"You ready?" Bobby asked his nervous protege.
"I think so," Dean said. "I wish dad was here." Dean wanted his father to see him compete, although he wasn't altogether sure how his father would react to this, or if he would approve.
"He's proud of you just the same," Bobby said firmly. "Knock 'em dead kiddo."
Dean took his seat up front of the gymnasium. The whole school was there and it was making Dean even more nervous. He was glad he could see Sammy. His brother's belief in him a boost of confidence.
"Dean Winchester," he heard his name called.
Dean walked up to the microphone.
"You word is staphylococci."
Was it f or ph. He took a deep breath. "My I have the language of origin."
Dean relaxed. "S-t-a-p-h-y-l-o-c-o-c-c-i," he spelled and looked at the judges. There was no bell ringing to indicate he spelled it wrong and the annoucer indicated his spelled it correctly. At least he made it past the first round.
The next speller took the his place in front of the mike. Dean was being to wonder if the whole world was against him when when he got the word knack.
Once again it was down to Dean and another boy from the 8th grade named Greg Michaels.
"Greg, your word is placid."
"P-l-a-s-i-d," Greg said before really thinking about it.
Bing, a bell rang. indicating the word was spelt wrong.
"Dean we need you to spell the last word and then one of your own."
"Placid. P-l-a-c-i-d," he spelled.
"Correct and for the win. Euphoric."
"Is it greek?" Dean guessed.
"Euphoric, e-u-p-h-o-r-i-c. Euphoric."
"That's correct. Congratulations, Dean."
Dean's whole face lit up when the audicence started clapping for him. It did Bobby's heart good to see John's eldest proud of himself for a change.
"Congratulations, Dean," the school principal said joining him on stage. "Would you like to represent the school at the district bee.
Hell no, was his first thought. He was still wondering what happened to his plan to throw the competition. "Yes," Dean said with determination. Where the hell had that come from. He was beginning to wonder if he was possessed. Oh well, he'd just blow the district bee.
Then he was given forms to fill out, and there were pamphlets that explained all the rules, and where he had to finish to make it to the nationals, where if he won he'd get $10, 000. He suddenly had a stong desire to win the whole thing. He had to win.
Dean knew that money could keep his family going for months. Sammy could go to school wearing new clothes instead of hand-me-downs. He could get Sammy the cool light up sneakers that he wanted. His father could get the Impala overhualed and maybe his dad would by him the new Metallica album.
It was going to be tough. Dean knew that and he wasn't sure if he was smart enough to pull it off but he would given everything he had for his family. He just hoped Bobby would continue to coach him. He just hoped his dad would approve. He looked around for his brother and found him in the middle of a large group of kids.
"Did you see my brother?" he could hear Sam saying. "He got all the big words cause he knows everything."
Bobby hugged him tight after the competition. "I'm so proud of you, boy," Bobby exclaimed.
"Thanks man. What about the trip to Washington. How am I going to pay for that?"
"Don't worry, kiddo. That's what the sponser's are for. They'll pay your expenses and the bee gives you two tickets. I'm thinking me and Sammy can go cheer you on."
"Do you think... uh, never mind," Dean said quickly dropping that line of though. "Will you continue to coach me?" Dean asked instead.
Do you think dad would come? Bobby knew that was what Dean had wanted to ask. He wasn't honestly wasn't sure. Like Dean, Bobby wasn't even sure if the eldest Winchester would even let Dean compete. He was, however, going on the principle that it was easier to get forgiveness than permission. He was listed as the boys Uncle and he could sing the permission forms. He just hoped that John stayed true to his word about leaving the boys with him for the year because he and Dean had a lot of work to do.
"'Course I'll coach you," Bobby said as if it shouldn't have even crossed Dean's mind.
If Dean thought studying for his school bee was hard work, it was nothing compared to preparing for the disctrict and regional finals. There was several times when he almost quit, when he found himelf getting frustrated and overwhelmed.
It was Sam that made the difference. No matter how flustered Dean got his brother was always there to cheer him and and make him think he may have a shot. All his hard work paid off when Dean placed 9th at the district bee and third at the regionals. He was on his way to the finals.
His confidence was a bit shaken that he just managed to qualify, but Bobby refused to let him put himself down, reminding Dean of the thousands of kids who didn't make even make it past their school bee's, like his friend Elizabeth. He was on his way to the nationals.
"Okay, Dean," Bobby said as they sat down at Bobby's table on the evening Dean qualified for nationals. "We have to get started. These are for you," Bobby said and pushed four big boxes at Dean.
"What are these," Dean asked as he lifted the lid and looked inside. He found several flashcards. Each on had a different word on it, along with the language of origin and definition.
"I even made sure their spelled phonetically so that Sammy can help you study, if I'm busy."
"Thanks, Bobby. How many are there?"
"Pardon me?" Dean said.
"There's 4000 words we have to study."
"I can't learn 4000 words," Dean said, his confidence starting to erode once again.
"Just use the techniques we've been working on. Break the big words down to little words, and work on the memorization techniques you've learded. Remeber, the language of origin can give you a big clue for suffixs and prefixs so just remember those rules," Bobby encouraged.
"But Bobby, its 4000 words," Dean protested. "I don't think I want to do thing anymore."
"Dean, son, I want you to listen to me. Even if your the first one out of the competition you have to remember your 200 out of thousands who couldn't get that far. I just want you to do your best and the most importantant thing you need to remember is that win, lose or draw, I'm proud of you, Sammy's proud of you and your daddy's proud too."
"Besides, you can't lose, Dean. You know everything," Sam informed his brother.
"Not everything Sammy."
"Okay, Dean one word at a time. Let's start with... Gabbro," Bobby said and pulled a card out of the box.
"Definition," Dean said with a sigh.
"A dark, course grained igneous rock," Bobby said.
They had been hard at work for a couple of hours when they heard the familiar rumble of the Impala pulling up in the driveway.
Part two is actually finished. I just need to know if anyone wants to read it so please review. Just remember I'm not to proud to beg.
I know that this could never happen on the show but its a story idea that wouldn't leave me alone after watching the movie.
Again, just one review will make me happy.
Member No.: 989
Joined: 31-December 05
Thanks for the reviews everyone. Here's the final part.
John Winchester pulled up Bobby's driveway. He'd only managed sporadic visits these last few months and he really missed his boys. He gotten wind of a black dog in Delaware and Jefferson, who'd John had been hunting with couldn't make it. He decided he would take the boys with him. It wouldn't hurt them to miss a few days of school and after it was taken care of the hunt, he'd get them enrolled in a new one.
He walked tiredly up the front steps and let himself in. "Hey, boys," he greeted them. Both boys ran and greeted their dad enthusiastically. They had missed him as well. Bobby joined them, and said hello.
"Hey, Dad, guess what?" Sam said excitedly tugging on John's arm trying to get his father's attentions.
Dean knew that Sam was going to tell his father about the spelling bee. Blurting it out was not the best way to go about it. Dean figured he had to give the news to his father in small doses. "Not now Sammy. Dad's tired," Dean said trying to pull his little brother away.
"But, Dean I want daddy to know your going to Washington," Sam said to his brother. Dean wanted to groan.
"It's nothing dad," Dean said trying to throw his father off the subject. "Um, school field trip."
"Dean's gonna be on TV," Sam suddenly annouced.
John frowned and glanced over at his eldest. "Answers Dean, now!" He ordered.
There was no choice but to admit the truth. Dean took a deep breath. "We had a spelling contest at school, and I won," he started and told the his father the whole story that had let to him qualifying for the national spelling bee. "Bobby's helping me study," Dean finished. He looked at his father hopefully. He wanted his dad's approval.
"When is it?" John asked.
"In May," Dean said.
"So you can go hunting with me this week than. I need your help with a black dog."
"What about school?" Dean asked.
"It won't hurt you to miss a few days. Go pack your's and Sammy's bags. I want to be ready to leave by noon tomorrow," John informed his eldest son.
Dean glanced through the open doorway to the boxes of flashcard resting on the table. He needed every day to study. He had to win that money. Could he ask his father to excuse him from this hunt?
"Dean," John said when his eldest remained rooted to his spot.
"How many days are we going to be gone," Dean said in a resigned tone.
"Pack all your things," John instructed. "The hunt's in Delaware. I'll enroll you in school there when were done."
We're leaving permanently, Dean though. They couldn't. He'd lose his sponser, and his spot in the spelling bee. He was surprised at how much that disappointed him. Although he guessed he should be relieved. The pressure was off him. He would have blown it in the first round anyway.
"Come on, Sammy. I need you to help me pack," Dean said to his little brother.
"But what about the bee?" Sammy said Dean's exact thoughts outloud. "Uncle Bobby said we had to work hard. How can we hunt and study?"
"Boys enough," John said in a tone indicating that he was not about to tolerate anymore insubordination from his sons.
"Forget it, Sammy," Dean said. "Come on," he said and lead his little brother out the door.
Bobby wanted to add in his two cents but he knew that John was on edge right now and a confrontation would do more harm than good. John would refuse on principle alone. He decided it was best to wait until after dinner and John was relaxed and had a cold beer in his hand.
In the boys room, Dean was stuffing things in his duffle bag, not even bothering to fold them.
"Dean, are you mad at Daddy?" Sam asked.
"No," Dean said in a forced tone. "Dad has an important job and he needs our help."
"But, Dean," Sam protested. "What about the..."
"Sammy, forget it," Dean snapped. "I'm going to get our stuff from the bathroom," Dean said and stormed out of the room. Sam could hear a door slam from down the hall.
Bobby had decided to check up on the boys and had come down the hall just in time to see John's eldest storm down the hall.
"Uncle Bobby is Dean mad at me?" Sam asked.
"No kiddo," Bobby said comforting the small boy. "He's disappointed."
"Why didn't he just tell Daddy he doesn't want to hunt?" Sam asked.
"It's complicated Sammy," Bobby explained. "But don't worry, I'll work on you're daddy. Dean's worked to hard to miss this."
John wandered into his friend kitchen looking for a beer. The boxes of flash cards on the table caught his eye. He pick up a card and looked at it. "Kibbutz," he read, only able to pronouce it thanks to Bobby' phonetic spelling. "Noun, Hebrew, a collective farm or settlement in Isreal." He stared at them incredously. Was Dean really planning on learning all these words. There was no way anyone could.
"Dad," a tentative voice called out from behind him.
John turned around and saw his eldest standing in the kitchen doorway. Dean decided to tell his father about the money, maybe he'd change his mind about letting him go to Washington.
"What's up Dean"?" John asked his son.
"Can I talk to you for a second?" Dean asked.
"What's about?" John asked.
"The spelling bee," Dean said. There was no point in beating around the bush.
"We settled this Dean," John said in a tone that indicated the discussion was over. "Learning how to spell..." he stopped and looked at the card again. "Kibbutz, is not going to help you stay safe."
"K-i-b-b-u-t-z," Dean rattled off with a small smile. "I know that but $10,000 dollars can go along way."
"What's this about $10,000 dollars?" John asked.
"The winner gets a check for $10,000. That could really help us dad."
"You have to win first, Dean." John said. "You're going to be going against kids that grew up doing this. Kids who go to private schools that have classes devoted to this sort of thing."
"Bobby's helping me study for it. Did you know he almost made it to the nationals," Dean said.
John picked up several more flashcard and looked for them. "Spell, mirhab," John said.
"Um, what's the language of origin?" Dean asked.
John looked at the card. "I don't know. What difference does it make?" John said impatiently. "Can you spell it or not."
"M-i-r-a-b," Dean blurted out.
"Wrong Dean," John informed his son a little harshly. "There's no way to learn all this, so there almost no chance of you winning. Now go pack."
Dean's confidence in himself just bottomed out. His dad didn't think he could do this, than how could he. Dean heard dropped and he stared at his shoelaces suddenly finding them fascinating.
Bobby really wanted to pull his shotgun and introduce John to the business end. He was not letting this continue. "It's an arabic word Dean," Bobby said. "Give it another try."
"Um, M-i-r-h-a-b," Dean guessed.
"Good going, kiddo. You see John it makes all the difference to know where the word comes from. He it can help even if you've never seen the word. And during the competition he's allowed to ask." Bobby picked up a box of flash cards and handed them to Dean. "Go get Sammy to help you with these. We'll do a little more work after dinner."
"But..." Dean said.
Bobby gave Dean a wink, telling Dean to leave his father to him. Suddenly Dean felt a little sorry for his father.
John, all of a sudden, felt something connect firmly with the back of his head.
"Ow, hey man. What the hell was that for?" John said as he rubbed the spot where Bobby had hit him.
"You need another," Bobby threatened and raised his hand.
"Bobby," John said warningly.
"How can you tell your son, you don't think he has a shot at winning. Are you trying to break your him?" Bobby said, a touch of anger in his tone.
"He needs to be realistic. He'd be up against..."
"You," Bobby interuptted.
"Excuse me?' John said in confusion.
"Who do you think he's been doing this for these last few months, Johnny. All he's ever wanted to do was make you proud. If you don't think he can succeed, he's going to convince himself that he's can't."
"I'm not done," Bobby interrupted John again. "You should have seen your son these last few months. He's been like a different kid. His confidence is up, his grades are up. He's even made some friends that he studys with. Think about it. He asked you to let him do this. When has he ever asked you for something?" Bobby said.
"Almost never," John had to admit. "I miss my boys, Bobby," John said, admitting the biggest reason he wanted them with him.
"Then stay. Dean is going to need all the help he can get. Caleb can take care of the black dog or Joshua might be able to," Bobby said but he could see John wavering. He just needed one final push. "Think of the money and how many hunts you can finance with $10,00."
"But can he win, Bobby? I'm not putting him down but there is only one winner and about 100 people who are going to loose."
"He's got the same odds as anyone else," Bobby pointed out reasonably.
"Can he handle it if he loses?" John answered back. "Is he going to see it as failure if he loses?" John said stating a legititmate concern.
"We've had some discussions about this. He'll be disappointed but he has to remember that just making there is suceeding. There are thousands of kids that don't," Bobby explained.
"Alright. I'll call Caleb. If he can help me, Dean can stay and compete but if he can't I'll need his help," John compromised. "Hey, Bobby, are you sure that's Dean. He's not possessed or anything is he. I mean he hates school."
No he doesn't, he just wants you to think he does. "It's him alright. I put holy water in his lemonade," Bobby said with a smile.
The next day, John called Caleb to ask for his help with the black dog. Caleb, who'd actually been planning on going after a suspected witches coven, had gotten an earful from Bobby the night before, so he agreed.
John told Dean at breakfast the next day that he and Sammy were going to stay with Bobby and that he could compete in the spelling bee.
"Thanks, dad," Dean said geninuely. He tried to hide his excitement.
"Are you gonna come watch?" Dean asked his dad.
"I don't know, kiddo, if I can get there. Knock 'em dead, okay?"
"Sure, dad," Dean said, again trying to hide his true feelings, this time disappointment.
The day to leave for Washington had finally arrived. Seeing how shaken, Dean was from the plane ride, Bobby refused to let Dean study the first day they were there, instead he took them out on a tour of the town. The next day, they only worked on words, Bobby knew that Dean was having trouble with. He knew that it was very esay to get overwhelmed, especially with the big event the very next day.
They arrived at the Grand Hyatt Hotel conference room. Bobby took Sam with him and went to register Dean and get his number. He arrived in the conference room and looked for his nephew. It was a little hard to spot him. All the kids in the competetion were wearing white golf shirts, with the Scripps National Spelling Bee logo, and beige dress pants. Finally spotting him, Bobby made his way over to his nephew.
"You feelin' alright kid?" Bobby inquired when he was next to Dean. He looked a little pale.
"Ah, no I think I'm gonna be sick," Dean said and and suddenly took off for the bathroom where he proceeded to empty his stomach. Bobby followed him. "Come on, Sammy I think your brother needs a pep talk."
They went to the bathroom and waited for Dean to finish. "Here," Bobby said handing Dean a ginger ale to help settle his stomach.
Dean looked at his coach and friend. "I don't belong here."
"Dean," Bobby said sharply. "If I ever hear you say something like that again, I'm puttin' you over me knee and tanning that back side. I don't care if it's on national tv. Are we clear?"
"Yes, Bobby," Dean said automatically.
"You're just nervous. Take a deep breath and relax," Bobby instructed.
"Yeah, Dean. I know you can do it. You're my brother," Sam said causing Dean to smile.
Dean followed Bobby's advice. He stuck close to them until he had to go take his place on stage. He wanted to throw up again when he stepped up to the mike.
"Dean, your first word is pneumectomy."
John Winchester was in an airport just a few hours outside of Washington, DC. He was waiting for his plane to California where there was a suspected woman in white. John was in a cranky mood. The Impala needed a new transmission and John didn't have the money for the parts. He would have used a fake credit card but he had to get to California, and he didn't have time, so he left the car with a hunter friend that he trusted and set out for the airport. He got there just in time to hear his flight was delayed. He sat in an uncomfortable airport chair watching ESPN when the National Spelling bee came on.
He could hear the annoncers talking about different kids when a name caught his ear. He looked up and saw his son's face on the TV screen. John couldn't believe how nervous Dean looked.
"13 year old Dean Winchester from Watertown South Dakota is another one to keep on eye on. From what I understand its his first year on the circuit and he could be one of the dark horses to win this year," on offical looking person said.
"That's my boy," John whispered proudly.
John startled. What the hell was he doing sitting in an airport when he should be with his son, watching him, supporting him. He stood up and stalked to the counter to rent a car. He could be in DC in a couple of hours.
"I need a car," John told the rental clerk. I just don't care what kind it is."
"Okay, we need to see a copy of your drivers license," the clerk asked.
John went to hand over a fake Id, when all of a sudden he grabbed his real one as he saw Dean approaching the mike for the first round. "That's my boy," he announced to everyone in the lobby, letting the pride come through in his voice as he watched Dean spell his word correctly. "I have to get to Washington."
The woman smiled at John. "Here you go, Mr. Winchester," the clerk said. "Good luck to your son."
Dean breathed a sign of relief when the annoucer told him he spelled his first word right. He had asked every question he was allowed to try to buy a little extra time to calm his nerves so he didn't make a stupid mistake.
His word in the second round but his heart right back into his stomache, when out of any hundreds of thousands of words he could have gotten they gave him shtriga. He spelled it without a problem but it brought up some unpleasnt memories. He decided that if he could get through that one, he could get through anything and his confidence grew as he worked his way through the rounds.
In the 13th round there was five spellers left. The words were getting tougher and during that round there were two more elminated. It was now down to three. Dean stepped up to the mike for his turn.
"Argillaceous," said the offical pronouncer.
"Argillaceous," Dean repeated. "What is the language of origin?"
"Definition please?" Dean asked.
"Of relating to or containing clay or clay minerals."
"Argillaceous. A-r-g-i-l-l-a..." Dean trailed off, his mind going blank and his frustration growing. He knew this word, he could remember studying it with Bobby but he was blanking.
"Can I restart?" Dean asked the judges. Calm down, he told himself firmly.
"Yes but you cannot change the letters you've already spelled."
Dean looked at his hands hoping they could somehow give him the answer. He looked over to his brother, hoping for encouragement. He did a double take, there with Sammy sitting on his lap was his father. Suddenly he could see the word in his mind. "A-r-g-i-l-l-a-c-e-o-u-s, Argillaceous?" he finished and held his breath waiting for the bell to sound.
John ran into the fancy hotel and straight the conference room. Traffic had been heavy and he prayed, for the first time, in a long time, that he hadn't missed the whole thing.
All the seats were full so John picked up Sam and sat him on his lap.
"Good to see you, Johnny," Bobby said sincerely, with a touch of nervousness. Dean was stuggling with his word.
John made sure he caught Dean's eye. He saw Dean's face lit up, and Dean finished spelling his word. John cheered when the announcer said it was correct.
"Dean's kicking ass, daddy," Sam said proudly.
John ignored his youngest son's language and hugged him tight. "He is, isn't he?" John said proudly.
In the next round, all three of them spelled their words correctly. Round 15 eliminated one more. Dean and another boy, named, Winston Palmer were the two finalists.
"We'll take a short break and commence with the championship round."
Dean bolted off the stage and into his father's arms. "Dad, you made it," Dean said excitedly.
"This is where I'm needed," he confirmed. "I'm so proud of you, Dean," John said and ruffled the hair of his eldest.
They were called back to the stage. There was 25 words in the championship round. If either one missed one, then the other had to spell the missed word plus on of their own to win. If they spelled them all correct they would be co-champions.
Dean was first. He stepped back up to the mike.
"Rhesus," the announcer said.
"Can I have the definition?" Dean asked.
"It's a type of monkey."
"R-h-e-s-u-s," Dean said.
John turned to Bobby. "How the hell did he know how to spell that?" John wanted to know. He would have said recesses, which is how it was pronouced.
"That's why you ask for the definition, dad," Sam explained.
"Thanks Sammy," John said. "I'll remember that next time."
They were 15 words into the championship words when Dean was given the word, merovingian.
"M-a-r-o-v-i-n-g-i-a-n," Dean tried.
Bing. The bell sounded.
Dean cursed himself and dejectedly walked back to his seat. Winston stepped up to the mike.
"You need to correctly spell Merovingian and then another word and you'll be the champion," the announcer said.
"M-e-r-o-v-i-n-g-i-a-n," Winston spelled.
"That is correct. Winston, if you correctly spell this word, you'll be the Scipps National Spelling Bee champion."
In the audience, Bobby and John were both wishing the kid would crash and burn.
"Xylophilous," the annoucer said.
"X-y-l-o-p-h-i-l-o-u-s," Winston said.
"Congratulations Winston, you're this years champion."
There was applaus, and cheers from Winston's family as he celebrated. The announcers asked everyone to congratulate both boys for making this far.
The award came next. They watched as Winston he was presented with a large trophy and the check. Dean received his own smaller trophy and he was awared the second prize of $3000 dollars. It would still help his family but not as much as the $10,000 would have.
"Bobby," John said seriously. "This is why I didn't want this. Look at him," John pointed out.
Bobby looked up and saw what John was talking about. It didn't show on his face but anyone who knew Dean Winchester just had to look at his eyes to know how he was feeling, and John could tell Dean was was beating himself up for losing and feeling like he had failed.
When he was polite for him to make an exit, John and Bobby saw Dean take off through a side door.
"I'll go talk to him," Bobby said. He wanted to smack Dean's father. Bobby could undestand being disappointed over not winning but why the hell was Dean feeling like the failed.
"I got this one," John said and headed off after his eldest.
He found Dean sitting in a stairwell.
"Dean," John said softly so he wouldn't startle his son.
"Hey, Dad," Dean said dejectedly.
"You did great up there," John said sincerely.
"I didn't win," Dean pointed out miserably. His father had finally came to see him and he screwed up again.
John sat next to Dean and put an arm over his son's shoulders. He felt Dean lean into him. "Do you really think that's what I care about?" John asked his son. "I'm so damn proud of you right now Dean, I don't even have the words to properly describe it. I mean the work and commitment you put into this clearly showed. I couldn't spell half the words I saw you spit out up there. It takes a lot of courage to do this Dean. Way more than hunting some evil spirit. I'm such a proud dad today, Dean and I'll tell you who else is proud of you right now, aside from Bobby and Sammy, I mean."
Dean looked at his father, eyes glistening. "Thanks dad," Dean said.
John hugged his son tight. "Come on, lets go celebrate. It's not everyday I get to take out a champion."
"Winston's the champion dad, not me," Dean pointed out.
"You are in my books, kiddo. What do you say we get some ice cream."
"Chocolate chip?" Dean asked.
"Is there any other kind?" John said. He returned his arm to its spot across Dean's shoulders when they both up stood up and John led his son out the door, back to Sammy and Bobby.
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