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"The Tomb of Fire and H
Member No.: 16,304
Joined: 14-February 07
The Tomb of Fire and Hate
Chapter 19 ~
Castiel’s body shook with power as he stood at the southern most crux of the triad, his arms outstretched, a sword in each hand. Power crackled around his body like electricity, sparking and smacking hungry lips. Uriel and Sarah were in the west and east, and he felt the power of their swords connect with his own. Energy, massively powerful, shot toward the heavens like a fountain, and the angelic swords danced in their hands.
In 1859, a phenomenon called a Superstorm had been observed world-wide as solar storms shook the skies. Castiel knew tonight would eclipse even the most recent accounts of solar storms, and it wasn’t even a solar event. Not since 949 BC had angels intervened with nature in preventing this small, blue planet from being destroyed. Humans really had no idea how often there were in danger from extermination from solar storms, meteors, gamma ray bursts, black holes, and number of universal unknowns. But God had His hand on this small planet and these humans, His creations and cherished children.
Castiel felt the darkness rushing toward him before he saw the ground rippling and cracking with barely contained rage. He braced himself, and moments later the spell hit and swelled against the wall of his angelic grace. Staggering, Castiel tightened his grasp on his swords and held fast against the tide of destruction that pounded against him, flailing desperately against his shield. Finally, lacking a pace to go, the spell turned back in on itself, driving itself deep into the earth in a massive quake. Unable to withstand the impact of so much energy, the ground split, tearing itself apart and spiraling back to the center, to the impetus of the spell, to Sam and Dean.
Bobby got one quick look at Sam’s horrified face before he saw the massive crack in the earth racing in his direction. He had just enough time to grab onto Dean’s collar before the angry monster beneath them opened wide and swallowed.
It was an eerie sensation, falling into the earth. Bobby instinctively reached out a hand and grabbed onto the wall of the dirt wall that seemed to be flying by at warp speed. His fingers scrapped and clawed along the rich dirt as both his and Dean’s weight dragged them downward. Finally his palm hit a large rock that jutted out of the earth and he clamped onto the lifeline with a strength only the most desperate can summon. Grunting in pain as Dean’s body jerked to an abrupt halt, Bobby felt his shoulder pull as the weight of the dangling hunter nearly dislocated the joint. A choked rasp reached his ears as Dean’s collar yanked tight against his windpipe, cutting off his precious supply of air.
Gasping, the kid twisted frantically, nearly dislodging Bobby’s tenuous hold on his shirt.
“Dean!” Bobby shouted desperately. “Stop or I’m gonna drop you!”
Stilling immediately, Dean tilted his head enough to see where he was and felt panic rise in his chest. Dark, wet mud and raggedy earth surrounded them on every side, and he seemed to be dangling loose limbed in mid air. Of course, the fact that he couldn’t breathe told him he must be hanging by his shirt. Vision darkening around the edges, he tried to look up enough to catch a glimpse of the older hunter.
“Reach up and grab my arm,” Bobby ordered. “Then I can release your collar.”
Air scratched through his bruised windpipe and his already blurry vision tunneled dangerously. Reaching up, Dean fumbled a moment before grasping onto Bobby’s strong wrist, and a second later air rushed into his starved lungs. Coughing weakly, he readjusted his hold on the older hunter’s arm and took stock of his surroundings. “Well, this is new,” he rasped, his voice rough.
“You could say,” Bobby groused. Worried, he could already feel Dean’s hand slipping slightly. “Can you see anything around you to hang on to?”
“Looking,” came the short reply. At the moment he was nose to mud with a filthy, smelling wall of earth. Fumbling slightly, he felt along the surface for anything stable enough to keep him from falling. Problem was, he couldn’t tell what was a lump of rock-shaped mud or actual rock. After his fists went through five clumps of dirt, Dean dropped his arm and rested a moment as he continued to search for something to hang on to.
“You doin’ okay?” Bobby asked, his voice tinged with strain.
“Yeah.” Dean didn’t spare any more breath.
Suddenly another tremor ripped through the ground, and Bobby felt Dean’s hand slip lower on his arm. “Damn it! You hang on there, boy. Don’t let go.”
“Not like I was plannin’ on it,” Dean growled as he attempted to regain some traction on Bobby’s arm. He knew he couldn’t keep hanging here. He was too heavy, and his friend couldn’t hold both their weights forever. Desperately, he twisted to the right, his eyes searching the wall. Just beyond his reach a little lower than his waist, he saw something jutting out from the muddy surface. “Just a sec, Bobby,” he panted. Grunting slightly, he dug the toes of his boots into the mud and stretched out his arm. His fingertips brushed the rough surface of the rock when the ground suddenly gave another massive lurch, and his hand slipped from Bobby’s wrist.
“No!” shouted Sam as he scrambled across the uneven ground toward where he saw Bobby and his brother disappear. “Dean!”
It was difficult to see through the blinding whiteness, but Sam ran toward the last place he saw the pair, stumbling over bodies and other debris littering the ground. He sensed more than saw Boatright following close behind.
Within minutes he dropped to his knees beside an enormous rip in the earth. Down deep inside was reddish brown, and looked as though the ground had been weeping.
“Dean! Bobby!” he yelled down into the darkness. Sam heard a faint yeah, and when a face turned up toward his, he saw Bobby clinging into the side of the crater. “You okay?” he shouted.
Something in his voice told Sam all was not right, and he squinted past the older hunter. “Where’s Dean?”
Bobby hesitated before saying, “He fell.”
Sam felt as though his mind and body had gone numb. “What…” he stammered.
“He fell,” Bobby said again. The old hunter angled his body and tried to see into the darkness below him. “Dean? Come on, boy … you down there?”
After several long seconds which seemed to take an eternity to pass, a voice floated upwards, “Hell … yeah.”
Sam felt as though he could breathe again. Turning to Boatright, he asked, “Do you know where you can get some rope?”
“Uh…” Boatright frowned a bit, before his face cleared. “Inside. When there are parades, we rope off the streets around the Center.”
Another shudder coursed through the park and Sam skittered to the side as another section of the ground cracked almost right beneath where he’d been kneeling. Quickly he pushed Boatright aside, away from the splitting ground, while rolling to onto to knees. “You okay?” he asked the wide-eyed sorcerer.
“Yeah,” Boatright panted. “Aftereffects of the spell?”
“Must be,” Sam grunted.
“I’ll get the rope,” Boatright said, then climbed to his feet and raced off across the lawn in the direction of the Civic Center.
Crawling toward the crumbling edge of ground that gave way to the yawning darkness, Sam leaned over and shouted, “Bobby? Dean?”
“Here,” Bobby yelled back.
There was no answering call from his brother, and Sam gulped. “Dean? Bobby, can you see him?”
Bobby dug his toes as best he could into the hard wall and shifted his body enough so he could look down. About ten feet below him he could make out a light-haired head pressed up against the mud wall. “Dean?” he called. When there was no answer, he yelled, “Damn it, Dean, you answer me, boy!”
Faintly he heard a groan and a grunt before a weak voice floated up, “Ugh, yeah?”
“Bobby?” Sam called out from above.
“Dean?” Bobby called, ignoring Sam for the moment. When he didn’t get a reply, he frowned. “Sit-rep!”
A minute passed before Dean shifted against the muddy wall, gave his head a shake, and called faintly, “Shoulder banged up some, hit my head falling…”
When Dean’s voice trailed off, Bobby shouted again, “Dean!”
Sluggishly Dean pushed his head off the wall, twisted slightly and looked up at Bobby and the painfully-white brightness beyond. Quickly he closed his eyes as the pounding in his head increased ten-fold. “Tore some muscles in my shoulder,” he yelled. “Hit my head on a rock, but don’t think I got a concussion. One hell of a headache, but that’s nothing new,” he finished under his breath. The bruised ribs and pain in his abdomen from Little Orphan Annie’s boots would have to wait.
“Can you climb back up to where I am?” Bobby asked.
“Can’t see anything with that light; wouldn’t know where to put my hands. Feeling my way up could have some bad consequences,” he finished, before adding under his breath, “like falling into the center of the earth. Maybe Sam would come find me, like the movie.” Of course, real life was much more literal than a film with prehistoric animals.
Bobby nodded and squinted back up to Sam’s shape looming above. “Can you get some rope?”
“Boatright’s on it,” Sam said. “How’s Dean?”
“Shoulders gonna be a problem, possible concussion.”
“Wrenched my shoulder, hands and arms all scraped to hell; that’s about it.”
“Can you…” he began just as the ground heaved again. Falling onto his side, Sam clawed the grass as the earth under his body split and ruptured, the chasm racing from the lip of the crater in which Bobby and Dean had fallen back toward the tree line. “Arrrgggg!” Sam yelped as his body slid sideways, his legs dropping into the new crack in the ground that had just created by the backlash of the spell. Nails gouged the dirt as his body slid into the hole. Just before he disappeared completely a small, strong hand grabbed his wrist and jerked him out onto firmer ground.
Breathing hard and coughing up dirt, Sam lay on his back and stared up into Ruby’s wide, dark eyes. “What are you…” he gasped, “doing here.”
“City Hall was so boring, I finally decided to check out the Civic Center,” she smirked.
“How did you know … we were here?” Sam asked.
Gesturing toward the brilliantly lit sky, she said dryly, “You’re kidding, right?”
“Yeah,” Sam admitted, levering himself into a sitting position. “Thanks for the hand.”
“No big.” Looking around, she asked, “Where’s the other half?”
Sam’s eyes widened and he scrambled back to the edge of the enormous hole in the ground. “Bobby? Dean?”
Sounding further away, Bobby called up, “Yeah, still here. Got that rope, or am I gonna have to rent a crane?”
Sam smiled slightly. “What about Dean?”
There was a minute of silence before Bobby said, “I can see his head, but he’s not answering.”
“Damn.” Sam stared at the tree line, as though willing Boatright to appear by sheer will.
“They’re down there?” Ruby asked incredulously.
Sam glanced over and saw that the demon had paled slightly as she stared down into the cavernous darkness. “Yeah.”
“Wow.” Her eyes met Sam’s, her expressions serious. “Where’s that rope?”
Dean panted lightly, as just breathing had become something of a problem. Dirt ash and debris swirled around, making the air thick and heavy. Coughing, he wrapped one arm around his chest and tried to bury his nose in his sleeve, but there was too much filth there to allow him a fresh breath. The quake – aftershock – spell backlash, whatever the hell it was, had hit and he’d lost his tenuous grip on the mud wall. He had no idea how far he’d fallen, but it was amazing how fast one could drop in a matter of seconds. It was only his clawing and digging at the wall with his hands, feet, any part of him that could grasp that allowed him to catch onto the thick rock and stop his descent. Now his whole body ached in ways he wouldn’t have thought possible.
Glancing up, he could barely make out Bobby’s form against the whiteness of the formerly night sky. He’d heard the hunter calling his name, but couldn’t seem to get enough air into his lungs to answer. So instead he focused on securing his position. If he fell much further, it was going to be even more difficult to get a rope long enough to reach.
Forcing the toes of his boots deeper into the wall, he felt along the gooey, wet surface for a rock, a root, anything that would give him some stability. His breathing picked up as he strained further across the wall, stretching out as much as he could without dropping further. Finally, a little to the left and about shoulder height, he spotted a slender piece of what he hoped was wood, and grinned when he recognized the feel of a root. Scooting closer, he wrapped the root twice around his wrist and grasped the end tightly in his fist. Now all he needed to no more aftershocks and a damn long piece of rope.
Sam was about ready to go and tear apart the Civic Center for rope when he saw Boatright running through the trees dragging a huge coil of rope and stumbling as the ground continued its restless stirring. Scrambling to his feet, he rushed across the uneven ground to Boatright’s side and grabbed onto the heavy bundle.
“It’s…” panted Boatright, “much heavier than I’d have thought.”
“Rope always is,” Sam agreed, dragging the mess between them. He glanced back toward the hole in the ground and saw that Ruby was kneeling by the edge, apparently talking to Bobby.
“Try and get him to answer,” Ruby was saying.
“What a good idea,” Bobby drawled, sarcasm dripping from his tone. “Wish I’da thought of that.”
Boatright was staring at Ruby, his eyes wide and mouth agape. “She’s … she’s a…”
Sam looked from Ruby to Boatright, raised his brows a bit before saying, “Uh, yeah, she’s a demon.”
Mouth agape, he stuttered, “And is there a reason you haven’t yanked her from that body?”
“She’s on our side,” Sam said.
“On our…” Boatright’s mouth thinned. “I hope you’re right. But I’ve had one of those things in me and their very nature is one of subterfuge and lies.”
“Ruby’s different,” Sam defended.
Boatright watched the stubborn hunter carefully. “How long was she in the pit?”
Sam wanted to lie, but instead answered truthfully, “A couple of centuries.”
“A couple centuries for us?” When Sam nodded, Boatright sighed. “And you seriously think anyone could remain in hell for that long and not be tainted?”
“She’s helped us for more than a year in ways I don’t have time to explain. She’s on our side … trust me. Now, can we rescue my brother?”
Head shaking slightly, Boatright backed off. Reaching for the rope, he began to unwind the coils, stretching out the rope in a long, fairly straight line.
Sam looked over at Ruby, who rolled her eyes and shrugged.
Sighing, he looked around the park for something stable to which he could secure the end of the rope. When the ground shook again, he muttered under his breath, “Damn it.”
Ruby quickly looked back into the hole and called, “Bobby?”
“Yeah,” his voice drifted up, sounding far away. “Can we get this show on the road?”
Sam glanced from the gazebo to the crater then down at the rope. He hoped there was enough length to reach, because there was nothing else in the park strong enough to support the weight of two grown men. “Here,” Sam said, gesturing for Ruby to take the end of the rope and secure it at the gazebo. As she ran off, he knelt by the hole and shouted, “Bobby?”
“Yeah!” came the scratchy reply on a cough.
“Can you still see Dean?”
After a moment, Bobby said, “Yeah! ‘bout twenty-five feet below!”
“Okay,” Sam said under his breath. “Okay,” he repeated for Bobby’s benefit. “I’m gonna lower the rope… Secure it around yourself, then I’ll lower you down to Dean, all right?”
“Yeah,” Bobby wheezed, then coughed deeply again. “Think you can pull us both up?”
Sam looked over his shoulder at Ruby and Boatright.
Boatright shrugged as Ruby nodded.
Peering down into the hole, Sam shouted, “No problem. Just … get Dean and we’ll take care of the rest.”
“Then let’s get this done,” Bobby coughed. “Airs gettin’ kinda thick down here.”
“Head’s up!” Sam called, and he tossed the rope over the edge of the hole.
Bobby fumbled behind him and grabbed awkwardly for the rope. After tying it around his waist, he squinted upward and shouted, “Lower me down!”
Sam secured the length of rope low around his hips and grunted as Bobby let go of the wall. Ruby and Boatright moved in to help Sam loosen the slack so the older man wouldn’t drop too quickly.
Bobby felt himself fall abruptly, steady, then he was slowly lowered. Narrowing his eyes, he squinted into the darkness, barely making out the lightness of Dean’s head in the shadows. The lower he got into the black of the pit, the more difficult it was to breathe. Gasping through the sludge, he coughed once before calling, “Dean?”
There wasn’t a response, so Bobby tilted his head back and yelled up at Sam, “Getting hard to breathe! Faster!”
Sam gritted his teeth and let more rope slide between his hands. Dean had been down there an awful long time…
Bobby coughed harder as Dean came more fully into view. The air was so thick with dirt it was practically sludge, and pulling it into his lungs felt like pushing a pear through a sieve … whole. The kid had his head bowed, his face buried deep inside his green and blue flannel shirt. His fingered were clawed into the mud wall of the pit, knuckles white with tension, his body rigid and taunt.
“Dean,” Bobby gasped before a wracking cough tore itself up from his throat. Reaching out, he grabbed onto Dean’s shoulder and hacked again as a thick cloud of dust puffed into the air.
Slowly, a spiked head raised and turned. Eyes heavy-lidded with fatigue and pain gazed dully in Bobby’s direction. “’Bout … time.”
“Idjit,” Bobby muttered. Staring into Dean’s eyes, he saw the exhaustion and pain swirling in the shadowed depths, and wondered whether the kid had the strength to hang onto the rope. But then, Dean had always done what was needed when it was needed. Today would be no different. “Wish I could tie this rope around you so we could haul you up,” Bobby wheezed. “But there’s no place to stand. You’re gonna have to hang on while they pull us up. Alright?”
Dean blinked through the haze at Bobby, then up into the blinding whiteness far above and frowned. “They’re not gonna be able to pull us both at the same time,” he rasped.
“Boatright’s up top, so’s Sam,” Bobby muttered, turning his head to cough into his shoulder. “They’ll manage.”
Dean stared at him a moment, then glanced upward toward the rim of the hole.
“’S not like we gotta a lot of choices here, boy,” Bobby growled. “You gotta trust Sam to get us out.”
Dean’s eyes snapped back to Bobby’s face. “I do.”
“Then grab this rope and we’re outta here.”
Nodding once, Dean stared up at the distinctly Sam-shaped shadow silhouetted against the bright sky. But when he attempted to pull in enough air to yell up that his weight was about to join Bobby’s on the rope, he began to cough deeply, the sound making Bobby wince in sympathy.
“I got it,” Bobby said. Burying his head inside his jacket, he drew in a breath of somewhat dust-free air, threw back his head and shouted, “Head’s up!” Turning back to Dean, he nodded. “Let’s get this road-show gone.”
Dean eyed the rope apprehensively, then reached out and grasped the length just above Bobby’s head. He jerked once, and an answering tug told him Sam and Boatright were ready. Gripping the rope, he allowed it take part of his weight before fully releasing the root to which he’d been clinging.
With both their weights on the rope, they suddenly dropped a few feet and Bobby gasped sharply, then coughed again.
“Yeah,” Dean growled, his voice thick and craggy. “Don’t inhale this gunk.”
“Smart ass,” Bobby snarled back, coughing some more.
Dean smirked and closed his eyes, waiting for their inevitable ascent. Then the rope jerked, and they were headed slowly out of the pit.
Sam grunted in pain, his hands burning as the rope slid across his palms. All he’d been concerned about was getting his brother and Bobby out of that damned hole in the ground. He hadn’t considered what their combined weights would do to his hands, and he was terrified he would drop them.
“Hang on,” Boatright encouraged as he too gasped when the rope tore skin from his hands.
“Should have gotten gloves,” Ruby grumbled, unintentionally echoing the thoughts of the other two. “Hope you got something to heal burns, sorcerer, ‘cause we’re gonna need it.”
“Just keep pulling…” Sam began before the ground shook once more, and he stumbled to the right. “Damn it!” he cursed, tightening his grip on the rope that held Dean and Bobby. “How long will this spell keep kickin’ our butts?”
“Just hang on!” Ruby shouted even as the heels of her boots dug deep grooves in the pristine park lawn.
“It was a powerful spell,” Boatright grunted as he struggled to maintain his footing. “I believe the whiteness of the light blanketing this area is the work of your angels keeping it contained within the park. With nowhere to go, the spell is heading the only place it can; into the ground.”
Sam frowned and glanced up at the light. Shoulda thought of that, should have remembered he and Bobby had told Dean to ask the angels for help. Well, at least the spell wasn’t going to bury the city, and that was something. Of course, it was doing a damn fine job of trying to bury them. Planting his feet more firmly on the ground, he groaned as he gave a mighty heave on the rope and felt it slid a couple of feet more over the soft ground. “We’re making progress. Keep pulling!”
Bobby gasped as the ground around them crumbled and they dropped a couple of feet. “Grab somethin’!” he shouted as he swung both him and Dean toward the deteriorating mud wall.
“And that’s gonna help, how?” Dean grumbled as he grabbed for a rock that pulled easily from the crumbling wall and dropped.
“Just do it, ya idjit,” Bobby growled. Grabbing a handful of dirt, he dug his nails into the wall and clung on, absolutely refusing to let go. Beside him Dean dug his hands into the wall and hung on like a monkey. Reaching over their heads, Bobby gripped the rope and tugged twice. When there was no answering pull, he sighed. “Think we’re stuck here for a bit,” he said.
“Looks like,” Dean coughed, panting lightly.
“You doin’ okay?” Bobby didn’t like the way Dean looked; eyes heavy-lidded, his face pale. It looked like he couldn’t get a decent breath of air.
“Better as soon as we’re topside.”
“Yeah,” Bobby said softly as he gave another tug on the rope. This time there was an answering jerk and he smiled. “Time to grant your wish, kid.”
Dean allowed his head to drop back as he blinked slowly into the bleach-bright sky. “Let’s head into the light.”
Bobby snorted as they pushed away from the wall.
“How much … further?” Ruby panted as she gave another heave on the rope.
“Don’t know,” Sam gasped. His hands were a mess. If he weren’t careful, the rope would slide right on through. Knowing he and Ruby were stronger than Boatright, he said, “Ruby, dig in and hang on. Boatright, we got this; check the hole, see how close…” his breath wheezed out on a huff as the strain of pulling the dead weight of two grown men took its toll on his ability to form a complete sentence.
Boatright waited for Sam’s nod before hurrying to the edge and looking over. Then he rushed back, grinning. Gripping the rope tight, he said, “They’re about seven feet down.”
Sam grinned back in relief. His strength renewed, he gave a huge heave on the rope and the trio continued to pull the pair to safety.
No more than five minutes later, Bobby’s head crested the rim of the crater. He threw his arm onto the surface of the park, shifted slightly, and grunted, “Dean, over the top.”
A filthy head of spiked hair appeared over the edge of the hole, followed by a mud-encrusted arm. Sam frowned in worry at Dean’s white face and the weary exhaustion in his eyes. “Ruby?”
“Yeah, we got it,” she huffed as she adjusted her grip on the rope and dug in.
Boatright moved up behind her and mimicked her stance. “Go,” he told Sam.
Sam cautiously loosened his grip, and when he felt certain Ruby and Boatright had the rope secured, he rushed to the cavernous hole. Gripping Dean’s arm, his eyes met his brother’s and he grinned as Dean smiled wearily.
“Ya … gonna help me out now?” Dean rasped.
“Keep your pants on,” Sam snarked through his grin.
“Not … a problem,” Dean smirked as he reached his other arm over the edge of the hole and gripped Sam’s arm.
Sam pulled Dean from the hole, made sure he was safe on solid ground, then reached over the edge and helped drag Bobby onto the once pristine lawn.
When both men were lying panting on the grass, Sam dropped down beside them, rolled onto his back and stared up at the white sky. The brightness didn’t blind him anymore, as his eyes had adjusted to the brilliance. The grass rustled on his right, and when he turned his head he saw Ruby sitting beside him, her hands cradled in his lap. Seconds later Boatright dropped down next to Dean, his head hung low, panting. “You guys all right?”
“Peachy,” Ruby muttered, staring down at the raw meat that were her hands.
“I’ll … be fine,” Boatright said between gasps.
“Think the aftershocks are done?” Ruby asked.
Sam raised his head slightly, as though looking to see if the ground were rippling in his direction. “Don’t know; hope so.”
Boatright scouted a little closer to Dean and placed his hand lightly on the young man’s chest. After a moment he frowned and asked, “How are you?”
“Been better,” Dean mumbled softly.
“I can help,” Boatright said, in a quiet undertone.
Dean opened his eyes and blinked at the sorcerer. For once all his inherent sarcasm and brash exterior abandoned him. “Without the mumbo-jumbo? I can’t go through that again right now.”
Smiling sadly, Boatright nodded. “Without the mumbo-jumbo. There are some pretty powerful herbs and roots I can use to speed up your healing. It’s all very holistic; holistic in the centuries-of-training-and-perfecting-of-recipes kind of way.”
“That, I can handle,” Dean said, closing his eyes. A moment later they snapped open, their haunted depths piercing Boatright’s. “I used the spell. It was…”
“Bad,” Boatright finished.
Dean nodded, his face paling further, if that was possible. “I burned it. No one should ever use it again.”
Before Boatright could agree, Sam had shifted closer to Dean. “You doin’ all right?”
“Jus’ peachy,” Dean said.
“You’re not lookin’ so hot.”
“How can that possibly be?” Dean smirked. Just then the white brightness of the night snapped out like someone had turned off all the lights and plunged the room into darkness. “Oh my god,” he muttered sarcastically, waving his hand in front of his face. “I’m blind.”
Sam snorted. “The spell must have played itself out.”
Dean quirked an eyebrow at his brother and drawled, “No crap, Sherlock.”
Sam rolled his eyes before realizing Dean probably wouldn’t be able to see him until their eyes adjusted to the darkness once more.
“That was the angels, huh?” Bobby asked.
“Wasn’t sure we’d be able to stop the sorcerers, so this was the backup plan,” Dean explained.
“Yeah, well, did it have to be so bright?” Bobby grumbled.
“I wonder what they did,” Boatright interjected.
“Hell if I know,” Dean said. “But I think it’s gonna be front page news tomorrow.”
A siren sounded far in the distance, and Sam crawled onto his knees. “We’re gonna be front page news if we don’t get out of here.”
“Damn if you ain’t right,” Bobby groaned as he pushed himself up off the ground.
Sam moved to Dean’s side and pulled his brother upright. Immediately Dean’s knees wobbled and he almost fell.
“Wow,” he muttered.
“I got ya,” Sam said softly, pulling his brother up close to his side.
Dean immediately pushed Sam’s arm away and muttered, “You girl.”
Sam snorted impatiently. “Fine, fall on your face, then.”
Dean didn’t respond, because he wasn’t too sure that exact thing wouldn’t actually happen. When Sam’s shoulder touched his in a reassuring manner, his lips quirked in a small smile.
The rag-tag group stumbled across the lawn, tripping liberally over cracks and valleys in the ground as the darkness made seeing the pitfalls more difficult.
They hadn’t gotten more than twenty yards when a voice shouted from behind, “Where do you think you’re going?”
The small tattered group turned and saw a collection of more than a dozen men and women standing not twenty yards away.
“Well, crap,” Ruby breathed softly.
“You gotta be kidding me,” Bobby muttered.
Vincent Boatright gapped and stuttered, “William?”
Sam gave Boatright a sideways glance before eyeing the tall, handsome man striding in their direction. “William Magill?”
“Yes,” said Boatright faintly. “The most powerful Sorcerer in the city; in the country, for that matter.”
“Weren’t you supposed to be watching him?” Dean sniped at Ruby.
“Bite me,” she growled.
“If the demons didn’t use him before, why would they bother now?” Sam asked as he watched Magill striding purposefully in their direction. “The spell had to be performed at sundown, and that’s long past.”
“I don’t know,” Boatright mumbled.
Dean puffed out a weary breath. “You guys ready for another death-match?”
“Think we already did a couple of those today,” Bobby said.
Sam took in Dean’s exhausted expression and the sheen of sweat beading his face before saying, “You up for this?”
Refusing to dignify Sam’s question with an answer, Dean merely scowled, shook off Sam’s arm and straightened his shoulders.
“Jerk,” Sam snarked.
“Bitch,” Dean responded under his breath.
“Boys,” Bobby snapped.
When Magill got about ten feet away from them, he stopped and began to clap his hands. “Well done,” he said mockingly. “You stopped not only the original plan, but our backup plan as well. You deserve a pat on the back … or something.”
“Yeah, we plan on party hats all around,” Bobby snipped.
Boatright stepped forward and said again, “William?”
“Not William, exactly,” Magill replied. “More like, William at last. With me in this body, all the powers that Magill has so carefully cultivated will be used to their ultimate potential.”
“Meaning?” Dean asked.
“Meaning, that while this experiment may have failed, there will be others. The preverbal White Hats can’t be everywhere. As for now, I’m thinking you boys have had your fun tonight; now it’s our turn.”
“Terrific,” Dean muttered.
“How do we take them out?” Bobby asked.
“Don’t know,” Sam said. He might be able to pull the demon from Magill, but he’d already pulled powerful demons from sorcerers twice tonight. His brother wasn't the only one exhibiting signs of exhaustion; he wasn’t sure he’d be able to do it a third time. And then there were the dozen or so other demons standing behind the sorcerer. Dean was already shaky, and the rest of them were beat to hell. Truth was, they were in no shape to take on this fight.
Dean felt his body shutting down and clenched his jaw, denying it the desire to fall right where he stood. Already he was finding it difficult to follow the conversation. They didn’t stand a chance. “We gonna fight or what?”
“Don’t see we got much choice,” Bobby answered.
“Got any weapons?”
“Perfect,” Ruby sniped.
“I think we’re being surrounded,” Dean interrupted.
In the minute they’d been conversing, the dozen or so demons had been moving to either side, creating a sort of arcing pincer about the group.
Suddenly a pale trench coated figure appeared behind Magill. The sorcerer spun around and flung a hand out at the angel. Castiel stumbled back a couple of paces before regaining his footing and charging forward. Black demon smoke began to pour from the sorcerer’s mouth when Castiel slapped his hand against his forehead. Light burst out from Magill’s eyes and mouth as a scream erupted.
“No!” Boatright yelled, but Bobby grabbed him before he could run toward the pair. “You can’t … he can’t,” Boatright sputtered. “He’s killing him!”
“He’s killing the demon,” Bobby stated, ignoring the fact that it was very possible the action would kill Magill as well.
Within seconds, pandemonium had broken out in the park. Uriel appeared within the midst of several demons, knocking bodies left and right, smiting wherever he laid his hands. A female angel with long, blond tresses blinked into existence amidst the demons charging Sam and Dean on the right and joined the fray, her body twisting like water, light flaring as she touched the demons.
When Magill dropped to the ground, Castiel spun and took out two more demons with barely a flick of his wrist.
Sam could hear the sirens more clearly now, and knew the cops were no more than a block away, at most. “We gotta get out of here,” he announced.
“But…” Dean said, gesturing to the fight going on not fifteen feet away.
“And you plan on helping, how?” Sam demanded. “We have no weapons, you can barely stand…”
“I’m standing,” Dean protested.
“Sam’s right,” Bobby said, coming up on Dean’s left, taking his arm and pulling him toward the western side of the park, toward the Historical Society. “We gotta go.”
“William,” Boatright said softly.
“I’m sorry about your friend,” Sam said, “but we can’t do anything. Police and emergency services will be here any minute. There are bodies everywhere plus what could be viewed as occultist paraphernalia. You want to have to explain this?”
“Come on,” Ruby urged, pulling Boatright’s arm and leading him across the trashed lawn.
Dean watched Castiel, Uriel and the blond angel fight until he felt Sam’s hand on his shoulder. Nodding once, he followed the other three through the park and into the dense trees beyond. It was there his body finally gave out and he felt his knees buckle. Hitting the soft leaf-strewn ground hard, he was just able to catch himself before doing a facer in the dirt. “Damn,” he muttered, surprise in his voice.
Sam turned around just in time to see Dean drop to his knees, a look of stunned surprise on his face. “Dean!”
“Sam,” Dean mumbled, his mouth hanging open. “Uh, I can’t seem to move my legs.”
“Bobby!” Sam called as he hurried over to his brother. “Are you hurt?”
Dean thought of everything that had happened that night and laughed. The laugh seemed to unnerve Sam even more and he grabbed his brother’s chin and pulled his face up so he could see into Dean’s eyes. “Are you hurt?”
Dean batted Sam’s hand away and growled, “Just tired … I think.”
Bobby leaned over and grabbed Dean under the arms, saying to Sam, “We can check him out later. Right now we gotta go.”
“Just help me up,” Dean snarled, feeling humiliated and angry.
Sam and Bobby grabbed him under each arm and literally pulled him to his feet. Together they set off again through the trees and were soon on the cobbled walkway alongside the Historical Society. Boatright and Ruby were standing just outside the tree line, looking nervous.
Dean pointed to the narrow alley alongside the building and muttered, “Car.”
Running as fast as they could, the five reached the alley and piled in the Impala. Sam had just started the engine when three police cars pulled up to the curb in front of the Historical Society building. “Damn,” he muttered.
“You gotta be kidding me,” Ruby grumbled.
Suddenly Dean laughed again, and everyone turned to stare in his direction. Shrugging, he said, “That’s the Winchester luck for you. Whatever can go wrong, will.”
... to be continued ...
Group: Forum Moderator
Member No.: 2,741
Joined: 24-February 06
I love hurt Dean.
Eeeeeeeeeek this was so exciting I was on the edge of that hole right there with Sam.
Did I say that I love HURT DEAN
And Bobby being all 'hang on son'
Gotta love hurt Dean
And they managed to rescue Dean and Bobby but with the help of Ruby
Everybody *Booooo Hisssssss*
And Dean was hurt
Excellent update edge of the seat stuff and I thought the descriptions were great they just pulled you along.
Now the boys are in the S**t and surrounded by the cops.
Dean is hurt.
Member No.: 16,304
Joined: 14-February 07
The Tomb of Fire and Hate
Chapter 20 ~
Five uniformed officers poured out of the vehicles and raced into the park, the sixth staying behind. Sam slumped low in his seat and watched as the remaining cop radioed in with the station house. “How do we get out of here?” he asked.
“Back up, slowly,” Boatright said in a hushed tone. The police officer obviously couldn’t hear him, but somehow he couldn’t help trying to be as inconspicuous as possible. “Once we get out of the alley, there’s a side street that will lead us past the park and into one of the residential neighborhoods. Once there, we can head back to the hotel.”
Sam nodded, gently put the car in reverse and lifted his foot off the brake, allowing the car to roll back. Inch by inch they rolled gently backward, Sam trying to keep the Impala from scraping the sides of either the building or the heavy fence bordering the alley.
“Tap the gas, man,” Dean complained, his voice rough and worn. “At this rate we’ll be here till dawn.”
“You wanna drive?” Sam sniped, then immediately countered with, “Never mind. You’d actually do it, lose consciousness at the wheel and we’d all be in jail by morning.”
“Would not,” Dean muttered unconvincingly.
Sam snorted and continued to inch back. When they reached the corner, he turned the wheel, put some pressure on the gas and angled the car around the corner where they were hidden by the massive brick building. Shifting gears, he followed Boatright’s directions and navigated the Impala down a narrow side street lined with small clapboard houses, and within ten minutes they pulled out onto a residential street.
Sighing in relief, Sam glanced over at Dean, whose head was against the door, eyes closed. Frowning, he caught a glimpse of Bobby watching him in the rearview mirror and knew they were both thinking the same thing; they needed to get Dean some help. Whatever had happened tonight had taken its toll on the young hunter, evident by the shallow breaths and pale complexion. Breaking the connection, his gaze slid to Boatright who was staring out the side window watching the houses fly by. “I’m sorry about your friend,” he said quietly.
Boatright considered Sam for a moment before returning to his perusal of the street. “Thank you.”
“We don’t know that he’s dead,” Bobby said.
Boatright snorted in disbelief. “You really think an angel of the Lord could exorcize a demon, and the host would survive?”
“The demon was making its escape before Castiel sent it back to hell, so Magill didn’t get the brunt of the exorcism.”
“And it depends on the strength of the host,” Ruby interjected. “From what you said, Magill was pretty strong.”
Shrugging, the sorcerer returned his attention to the streets, too tired and worn to work up enough energy even for hope.
The car was silent as they crawled past partiers and revelers out on the town, Founder’s Day celebrators laughing and moving up and down the streets decked in party hats and ropes of beads like Mardi Gras. Sam watched the revelers with a surreal detachment. It felt odd, being directly in the midst of the celebratory atmosphere but so detached. No one knew that those within the car had almost died tonight; no one knew that everyone almost died. Eventually he pulled into the hotel lot and parked in front of his and Dean’s room. Not even the sound of the Impala’s engine shutting down woke the sleeping hunter.
“Can you help me get him inside?” Sam asked Bobby.
“Yeah,” said the older hunter in a gruff tone.
Together the pair maneuvered Dean from the car and into the hotel despite his cranking insistence that he wasn’t an invalid and could walk on his own. Sam frowned when his brother dropped onto the bed, face first, and was immediately asleep, not even bothering to remove his coat or boots.
“He’s really pale,” Sam said softly.
Bobby grunted as he dropped wearily onto Sam’s bed. “Was a busy night.”
“He’s got internal injuries,” Boatright said from the door.
Sam gaped in his direction. “What?”
“I, uh, touched his chest in the park and felt the pain inside. He’s got two cracked ribs, deep tissue bruising along his abdomen, lateral serratus, external obliques, and possible kidney damage. He’s in a lot of pain, physically and psychologically.”
“What he did to take out Ilyas was pretty traumatic, not that he’d ever admit that, from what I’ve come to know of him.”
“He does tend to keep a lot bottled up inside,” Bobby agreed.
Sam leaned over Dean and ran his hand lightly over his brother’s back. The action was one Dean would have shaken off had he been conscious. But the simple gesture made Sam feel closer to his brother than he had in a long time. “What can we do? He won’t go to the hospital.”
“I believe I can help him.”
“With magic?” Ruby asked, reminding Sam that she was still in the room.
The sorcerer shook his head. “No, not magic, Homeopathy. There are potions that will help with the physical healing, that will speed the mending of his ribs and the muscles damage.”
“And with the other?”
“The psychological,” Boatright sighed, “I can’t erase his memories, of hell or anything else. But I can fade his most recent recollections somewhat. However, the herbs we have on hand are mainly for protection. I’ll need others from Adelle’s shop.” His face paled somewhat at the mention of Adelle Smyth.
“I’ll get them if you make a list,” Ruby offered.
Boatright nodded and moved to the shabby table and began to write.
Bobby pushed himself off Sam’s bed and stretched, “I’m headin’ next door for a shower and fresh clothes. Call if you need me.”
As the door closed, Boatright walked over and handed a piece of paper to Ruby. “Don’t worry about quantity; just bring the whole bag or jar. Apparently there’s a … um, body in the back room. I don’t think you’ll need to go in there.”
“I’ve seen bodies before,” Ruby shrugged. Heading for the door, she said to Sam, “I’ll be back as soon as I can.”
“I’m going to Bobby’s room and get cleaned up,” Boatright said, rubbing his tired and reddened eyes. “Maybe take a short nap before she gets back with my ingredients. I suggest you get some sleep as well.”
When the room was clear, Sam stood alone between the beds listening to the soft breaths of his brother punctuating the silence. Leaning over, he unlaced Dean’s boots and let them fall to the floor. Then he wrested Dean’s arms from his coat and dropped it next to the muddy boots. Wincing in pain, he glanced down at his hands and stared at the raw red welts crisscrossing the palms. In the rush of getting out of the park he’d completely forgotten the rope burns. Damn, now that he remembered they were excruciatingly painful. Reaching over, he pried open his brother’s fists and saw red welts there as well. “Man, aren’t we a pair,” he murmured as he pushed up the sleeves of Dean’s shirt and grimaced at the cuts and abrasions littering his arms. “I’ll take care of these, then we’ll both get some sleep.”
More than twenty minutes later Sam dropped the last of the gauze and cotton into the trash. Both his and Dean’s hands were liberally slathered with antibiotic cream and bandaged, and white squares of tape sporadically dotted Dean’s arms. Groaning softly, Sam stumbled to his feet and was surprised when his vision dimmed. “Damn,” he murmured. “Head rush.” Shucking his own coat and shoes, he tumbled onto his own bed’s soft surface and was out before his head touched the pillow.
Three hours later Boatright sat once more at the table in Sam and Dean’s room, sprinkling some white powder into a glass of clear liquid. The concoction turned blue as he stirred and he held it up to the light. It glimmered slightly, and minute particles of roots and herbs swirled around in the mixture. “It’s done. Why don’t you wake him up, Sam?”
Sam nodded and moved over to the bed. Shaking Dean’s shoulder, he murmured softly, “Hey, Dean…”
Instead of waking, Dean merely turned his head to the side, the action eliciting a groan of pain.
Sam lightly tapped Dean’s cheeks, “Hey, come on; I need you to wake up, okay?”
Dean’s lids fluttered as he responded to his brother’s voice.
“Yeah, that’s it.”
Dragging his eyes open with a visible effort, Dean frowned up at Sam, “Sam? You all right?”
“I’m fine. No, don’t go back to sleep. I need you to drink this,” he said, taking the glass from Boatright.
Dean blinked owlishly at the glass. “It’s blue.”
Sam laughed softly. “Yeah, it’s blue, like raspberry Gatorade.”
“Gatorade sucks,” Dean countered vaguely.
“Well, I need you to drink this. It’ll make you feel better.”
“Ah,” Dean murmured, finally understanding. “Magic blue stuff.”
“Yeah, magic blue stuff.”
Dean raised the glass and took a sip. Grimacing, he said, “It sucks too.”
“But it’s gonna help you heal, so bottom’s up.”
Pulling a face, Dean downed the beverage then dropped back onto his pillow, his eyes closed. Sam caught the glass before it tumbled from his brother’s slack hand.
Boatright watched as the young hunter fell asleep again. “He should sleep the rest of the night and a good portion of tomorrow. And this,” he added, handed Sam a bowl of thick amber liquid, “is something for your hands. It’ll help heal the rope burns.”
Bobby leaned over and sniffed, made a face, and growled, “Smells awful.”
The sorcerer smiled. “I’ve got some for you next door. Don’t think I didn’t smell the antibiotic cream you rubbed on.”
Bobby scowled as moved to the door. “If you two are finished trading recipes, I’m for gettin’ some shuteye. You ready?” he said to Boatright.
“More than ready,” Boatright nodded.
Before he left, Bobby gave Sam’s pale face and shadowed eyes a once over. “Don’t stay up all night watchin’ out for Dean. It’s close to midnight and you’re exhausted, so get some sleep. We got Pamela’s funeral day after tomorrow, and I expect you both front row center.”
“We’ll be there,” Sam said.
Bobby watched him a moment before letting his eyes drift over the sleeping form of Dean. “He’s gonna be just fine.”
Smiling, Sam nodded once, “Yeah.”
The door closed and Sam stood watching his brother sleep for another couple of minutes before heading into the bathroom to brush his teeth and splash some water on his face. After donning a faded tee and sweat pants, he crawled beneath the sheets of his bed and fell asleep.
It seemed as though only seconds had passed before Sam was jerked awake by the sound of pounding on the hotel room door. “Oh, for god’s sake,” he mumbled, groaning as he rolled onto his back and pried open his eyes. The room was filled with sunlight, though shadowed by the drawn curtains. It had to be at least mid-morning. Stretching a little, he turned his head and saw that Dean was asleep on his stomach, his hand tucked under the pillow. Sam’s lips quirked slightly. Didn’t matter if his brother’s knife was under the pillow or not, not much could break the years-in-the-making habit of keeping his hand on the lethal blade.
The pounding sounded again, and Sam groaned as cramped and sore muscles protested his rising. Stumbling to the door, he opened it and saw Ruby standing outside.
“You gonna invite me in?” she smirked.
Blinking, he stared for a second before snatching the cardkey off the table and stepping outside. “What are you doing here?”
“It’s almost noon, Sam. I thought we’d get in some training before you leave town. This city is like a gym filled with punching bags.”
Sam frowned slightly, considered Ruby’s excited expression, and said, “I think I’m gonna stay here today.”
“I just want to be here in case Dean needs me.”
“Again I ask, why? Dean’s a big boy, Sam. He doesn’t need you to babysit.”
“You heard what Boatright said; he was hurt pretty bad yesterday.”
“And the sorcerer gave him his magic get well potion. He said Dean was gonna be asleep most of the day, so why does he need you there?”
“He was hurt, Ruby. I don’t know what happened with Ilyas, but it must have been pretty bad.”
“Yeah,” Ruby snickered lightly.
Sam’s eyes narrowed. “What do you know?”
“Rumor is Dean sent him some place far, far away.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
“No one’s been very specific, so I don’t know. Let’s just say Dean apparently doesn’t have to worry about Ilyas bothering him any time soon … or ever.”
Sam stared at her for a couple of seconds before rolling his eyes and sighing. “Whatever happened, he was hurt and I need to stick around.”
Ruby clenched her jaw in annoyance. “I thought you were in this, Sam. I thought killing Lilith meant as much to you as it does to me. There are dozens of demons in this city; they’re practically falling into your lap! You’re never going to get another opportunity for this much practice.”
Sam gazed across the sparse hotel parking lot at the sun baked street, at the people walking along the sidewalks, laughing and talking, enjoying the casual day-after-the-party atmosphere. He should go. The stronger he got, the better chance he stood at killing Lilith before she could set Lucifer free. Ruby was right; most often she had to find the demons for him to exorcise. Now there were dozens running around the city.
Impatient, Ruby whirled away and stepped out of the shadows and onto the sundrenched pavement before turning back and insisting, “Come on, Sam. I got three prime targets tied up in the warehouse right now. They’re not gonna wait forever, so strap on a pair and let’s go.”
Dean woke gradually to a dimly shadowed room. His head felt sluggish and thick, as though he’d been sleeping for a week. He started to turn over and every single muscle in his body screamed bloody murder. “Mother of…” he moaned softly.
“Here, drink this.”
Moving his head with slow deliberation, he squinted up at Sam who was holding out a bottle of water.
Not even trying to get out of bed, he downed nearly the entire bottle. “Thanks,” he murmured.
“No problem. How’re you feeling?”
“Like I been hit by a bus or run over by a truck … or both.” Groaning, he fought against the stiffness and his protesting muscles and pushed himself into a sitting position. “Time is it?”
“Yup. You slept last night and all today.”
“What was in that damn drink?”
Sam smiled as he moved over to the bed and sat down next to Dean. “Something you needed. Here, let me check your hands.”
“My what?” Jerking his hand away, Dean frowned and stared down at the thick padding.
“Rope burns,” Sam explained, holding up his own bandaged appendages. “Boatright gave us some paste to help with the healing. It’s pretty damn good stuff, because the swelling and most of the redness is gone.”
“Oh, well, let me take a shower first. No point in mummifying me twice.”
Twenty minutes later Dean was clean shaven and sitting on the bed with Sam twisting pristine white bandages around his hands. “Where’s Bobby?”
“He stopped by earlier, said he was taking Boatright home.” Sam glanced up at Dean’s face before returning his attention to his task. “Boatright got a call about the deaths of Jackson and Adelle Smyth.”
Dean’s face remained impassive, as the memory of killing Adelle washed over him. “Oh?”
“Yeah. He wanted to be with Jason when he identified the bodies.”
“So the kids all right.”
“Looks like when the demon inside Jackson died, the spell on Jason lifted, so he’s fine. Doesn’t remember anything about the park, though it’s gonna be tough trying to explain why his father was apparently conducting a ritualistic séance in Civic Park.”
“Awkward,” Dean commented.
“More awkward were Monica Hubbard, Robert Ezell and Eric Manchester having to explain why they were unconscious in various historic buildings with equally incriminating occultist paraphernalia. They’re all crying conspiracy.”
“That’s almost as good as the devil made me do it defense.”
“William Magill is alive but suffering from third degree burns and amnesia. He can’t answer any questions so the frustration level in the police department is through the roof.”
“This thing is going down as the mystery of the decade.”
“Sounds like. Oh, and DeWitt called.”
“Yup. Wanted to know if we knew anything about the “going’s on” last night.”
“And did we?”
“I said we hadn’t made any concrete connection between our cases and the murders in this city, and that we appreciated his cooperation.”
“Bet he loved that,” Dean snorted.
“Yeah, he wasn’t too happy, and kindly asked that we leave his jurisdiction as soon as possible … or our ass is grass.”
“Good thing we weren’t planning on sticking around then,” Dean quipped. Downing the rest of his bottled water, he slid a glance over at Sam and asked casually, “Where’s Ruby?”
Sam shrugged. “Left last night, I guess.”
“Yeah,” Sam declared, a little defensively. “Why? You wanna talk with her?”
“God no,” Dean retorted. “It’s just, I woke up a bit earlier and thought I heard her voice.”
“Must have been a dream,” Sam dismissed, getting up off the bed and putting Boatright’s ointment back near the first aid kit.
Dean watched him fuss with their kit, his face grim. He hadn’t been dreaming; he knew he’d heard Ruby urging Sam to go out with her and “train.” And while he was glad Sam had chosen not to go this time, he didn’t understand why his brother didn’t just admit she’d been there and had left. He hated this feeling, the feeling that he couldn’t trust Sam to tell him the truth, to tell him what was going on. And he was so damned tired of walking on eggshells.
Turning back around, Sam leaned against the table and watched Dean tug on a pair of socks. “So, what happened with Ilyas?”
Dean froze for the merest fraction of a second, before saying casually, “Was touch and go there for a couple a minutes, then I exorcised his ass back to hell.”
“Yup. He’s doing the fireside tap dance as we speak.”
“What?” Dean exclaimed as he stood, sauntered over to where his jacket lay on the ground, snatched it up and shrugged it on. “It was a demon, Sam. I told you I could handle it and I did. He’s gone; nothing more to say.”
“Boatright said that in order to get rid of Ilyas, you had to do something pretty bad.”
“Well, he was wrong,” Dean declared. “You hungry?”
Sam, used to the abrupt changes in conversational direction by this time, huffed. “Yeah, I could eat.” Reaching over, he snagged his jacket, the room keycard, and marched outside. Jamming the Impala’s key into the front door, he climbed inside and proceeded to strangle the steering wheel. Dean was so damned irritating! Obviously what had gone down with Ilyas had been more than just a simple exorcism; Sam had seen Dean’s condition in the park and after, and Boatright had confirmed that whatever had happened was bad. So why couldn’t Dean just open up? Keeping everything locked down inside was taking a toll and Dean was already walking a fine line of control.
The side door creaked opened and Dean leaned over to get a better look at Sam. “You just assume you’re driving now?”
“Oh, come on,” Sam snapped. “Your beat all to hell and you just woke up. You don’t have to be in control of everything.”
Dean’s brows quirked as he blinked; he climbed inside and slammed the door. “And driving the car is controlling everything now?”
“No,” Sam sighed. “It’s not.”
“Fine, then let’s eat.”
Bobby dumped his overnight bag inside the trunk of his car then slammed it closed. Moving around to the side, he leaned into the front door, his arms resting on the car’s warm roof. “I’m meeting Pamela’s folks at the funeral home at ten in the morning, so I’m heading out. Service is at three, so don’t be late.”
“We’ll be there,” said Dean.
“You can count on it,” Sam agreed.
“Good.” Bobby turned to Vincent Boatright and they shook hands. “You need anything, you know who to call.”
“Ghostbusters,” Dean sniped under his breath, and got an elbow in the ribs from Sam.
Boatright’s lips quirked slightly but he merely said, “I don’t know how to thank you; all of you. We would have lost everything and everyone without your help.”
“It’s what we do,” Bobby said simply. His car door creaked as he opened it and climbed inside. Once he started the engine, he waved once out the window and drove off.
The three watched the car disappear down the road, then Boatright turned to the brothers and said, “Same goes for you two.”
“It’s been said; this is what we do,” Dean quipped lightly.
“How’s Magill?” Sam asked.
“Not great, but getting better. He doesn’t remember anything that happened in the park, and its difficult dealing with the deaths of Adelle and Jackson. We’ve know them all our lives. But we’ll deal, all of us, together. Anyway, I’m heading back to the hospital to check in on William. Jason stayed with him this afternoon; I’m taking the evening shift.”
“Good luck,” Dean said, sticking out his hand.
Boatright shook it before handing Dean another small bottle of blue liquid. “Take this tonight. You’ll get a good night’s sleep and plenty of healing before your back on the road tomorrow.”
“Thanks,” Dean said, pocketing the potion.
Boatright turned to Sam and smiled. “You saved me, not once, but twice. Words aren’t enough, but thank you will have to do.”
Sam smiled as he took Boatright’s hand. “Call if you need anything, and make sure everyone is wearing the amulet. You shouldn’t be bothered by demons again.”
“We’re taking precautions to secure the city, so with the amulets protecting our bodies, we should do fine. Again, thank you.” Turning, he strode back to his car. Once there, he lifted his hand in farewell before sliding inside and driving off into the darkening night.
Sam was instantly awake in the darkened motel room. At first he wondered whether there was some threat, but then he heard Dean muttering in his sleep. Slowly he turned onto his side. His brother huffed out a breath then moaned deep in his throat. He wasn’t awake yet, and that was a good thing. Maybe the dreams wouldn’t be so bad tonight, but somehow, Sam didn’t think Dean was that lucky. A strangled gasp scratched the silence and Sam knew the instant Dean woke.
Heart pounding wildly, Dean gasped and jerked awake. Visions of fire and Ilyas screaming in madness swirled in his head, and he groaned softly, massaging his temples. His skin felt hot, like the flames had been real-time, licking his skin. Not to be forgotten, his stomach roiled and twisted, and he dropped one hand down to massage there. No way was he throwing up tonight. He hadn’t eaten that much, and there was nothing worse than dry heaves.
When his breathing got more under control, he twisted onto his side and reached for the water bottle on the nightstand. There he saw the little bottle of potion Boatright had left. Damn, he’d forgotten to take it. Snagging both bottles, he downed the blue potion and waited, hoping it wouldn’t make a reappearance in the porcelain bowl. When the liquid showed every indication of staying down, he opened the water bottle and slowly drank. Finally he lay back down, breathing deeply until his heart slowed, his body relaxed, and he fell asleep once more.
Sam rolled onto his back, stared at the shabby ceiling and listened as Dean’s breathing evened out and deepened. When he was sure his brother was asleep, he sat up and watched him for awhile. What had happened with Ilyas? He truly wished he knew so he could help Dean face the problems and move on. Dean’s holding everything inside was becoming detrimental to his health and could become a problem for the job. If he couldn’t count on Dean to do what was needed to win this, could he do it alone? He didn’t want to, but taking out Lilith meant saving the world, and that was more important than anything … wasn’t it? Wasn’t that what dad would have done? And what if killing Lilith meant leaving Dean behind…
Black night blurred the highway into nothingness as shadowed landscape whipped by the window. Dawn was a little more than an hour away and the hills were just beginning to tip themselves in gold. Pam’s funeral was today, and they’d left McMinnville at around five AM in order to cover the distance to her home town. If they ignored the speed limits, they would arrive somewhere around eleven, in time to get a motel and a couple hours sleep.
Bobby had said Pam’s family arrived in town yesterday, and he would be meeting them this morning. They would attend the service with almost everyone in the small rural city. Pam had been well liked. Dean wasn’t looking forward to facing all Pamela’s grieving friends, knowing it was his idea that had gotten her killed. Would the guilt of his actions show on his face? Would they know just by looking at him that he had caused her death?
“You awake?” Sam asked, his gaze sliding to his brother in the passage seat.
“Hmm,” Dean grunted as he watched the landscape passing rapidly by.
“Uh, you gonna say anything?”
Shifting slightly, Dean turned and looked at Sam, his face guarded. “Say anything?”
“At Pam’s funeral.”
Dean stared for a moment before turning his attention back out the window. “Why would I say anything?”
“Because she died helping us,” Sam said, indignation barely masked in his tone.
“What would you have me say, Sam? That Pam didn’t want to help us stop some supernatural carnage, but I dragged her in to rip our spirits from our bodies so we could kill the demon who was after death?”
“Of course not,” Sam snapped, his temper fraying. “But we should say something about how brave she was.”
Dean was silent as he stared out the windshield.
Dean rubbed his temples, trying to dispel the headache that seemed to be returning with a vengeance. “What Pam did for us was beyond brave, and she did it against her will because we asked; I asked. There are no words that can give justice to that kind of sacrifice. So no, Sam, I’m not going to say anything at her funeral. I’m not going to surprise her friends and family with the knowledge that demons are running around the world, I’m not going to dishonor her memory by saying how we dragged her into something she never wanted.”
“She gave her life for us,” Sam said.
“And now she’s out of it,” Dean said, before murmuring under his breath, “she’s the lucky one.”
Shimmering gold lit the horizon as the dawn of a new day loomed. Yet a thick blanket of night weighed heavy against the Impala as the car sped down the empty highway, rear lights winking like twin ruby eyes in the darkness.
The sounds of car horns tore through the night like knives through tissue paper. Headlights of crashed vehicles shone through the darkness, lost and without direction. Castiel strode through the wreckage of cars, their blaring horns almost nothing as all his attention stayed focused on the body lying in the middle of the pile-up. Pale blond hair splayed itself across the still sun-warmed pavement, and the outline of wings scorched into the tar. No, he thought as he knelt beside the still body. Just a couple days ago they had fought side by side to stop the seal at McMinnville from breaking. Now she was gone, murdered.
The scream of sirens grew louder as he bent over the form of a sister, a comrade in arms, one who had fought by his side for generations, and who had just recently stopped the terrible spell from spreading in McMinnville.
As the lights of the police cars and ambulances drew nearer, he whispered, “Goodbye, sister,” and disappeared.
Someone was murdering angels…
Group: Game Mod
Member No.: 26,927
Joined: 10-October 07
Oh my, that was, wow, just wow. Loved how you tied it in with the next episode, it flowed seamlessly and would have been a perfect fit for the series. The ending is just perfect, wow, this is great, amazing! Thank you for sharing this story with us.
Group: Forum Moderator
Member No.: 2,741
Joined: 24-February 06
Thank goodness its Friday and I have time to breath and .....read
Oh soooooooooooooooooooo glad that Sam stayed with Dean but those boys are heading for trouble keeping their own council.
Bobby ought to bash their heads together NOW !! Cause it will all end in tears.
What a great story and so well crafted you kept the suspense going right the way through. I was certainly kept guessing several times. Then you built up to the climax and OMG YOU HURT DEAN ! Heheh Yeah that climax was all it should have been and more.
Jolly Well Done!
Oh my I sound very English all of a sudden lol
Take a huge
and when you've unpacked those boxes please write another story. Oh and if you want to hurt Dean a little ....feel free.
Member No.: 17,044
Joined: 1-March 07
| It’s what we do...
That's what it all comes down to, doesn't it? *sighs*
This was very well done -- thank you so much for giving me the heads up that you'd completed it. Once in awhile I need someone to grab me and point me in the right direction.
I liked the pain I could feel from both of them through this -- I know that in any other venue that statement would sound sick and wrong, but it's safe to say here.
I like how you dovetailed the end of this into the next episode, too.
Congrats on completing a story well-told. I was definitely entertained.
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