|Down the Rabbit Hole
Author: a.lakewood PM
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. GenRated: Fiction T - English - Dean W. & Ruby - Chapters: 6 - Words: 5,724 - Reviews: 13 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 6 - Updated: 06-01-09 - Published: 03-02-08 - id: 4106841
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Title: Down the Rabbit Hole 1/?
Characters: Dean, Ruby
Warnings: Spoilers for Dream a Little Dream of Me, and The Magnificent Seven (just in case).
Summary: A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. --Lao-tzu
Disclaimer: As always, I own nothing.
So, yeah. Probably not the best idea Dean Winchester ever had. But it was, by far, not his worst.
Anyway, it wasn't like he could just go and ask Ruby. He was pretty sure she didn't like him.
So, this – not a good idea. But he really wanted to know.
The dream root was some pretty trippy stuff. Then, combined with black-magicky demon powers. Yeah. Definitely not a good idea.
But he wasn't even sure if it was going to work. Do demons even sleep? If Ruby wasn't sleeping, would he just end up in her thoughts, in her subconscious? Would it even be Ruby's mind, or that of the girl she was possessing?
Dean stared at the mug of noxious-smelling tea, tainted with Ruby's blood – getting that was super-fun – and glanced over at a snoring Sam.
Oh, his brother would kill him if he weren't already about to bite it.
Wrinkling his nose, he lifted the mug. "Bottoms up," he said to himself.
When Dean woke up, he found himself completely disoriented. In the midst of an all-consuming darkness, he wasn't sure of direction, couldn't get his bearings. He was afraid to move and slowly sank to a crouching position before sitting down.
From this position, he felt the tiniest current of cool air. It was followed by a downdraft of heat. He put his hand out flat in front of him. It was solid. He started crawling forward.
It was at least ten minutes before the darkness started to diminish and, damn, was Dean thankful for that – he hadn't been on his hands and knees for this long in a while.
The light took on an orangey glow, and the brighter it got, the more uneasy Dean's stomach became. Probably because, with the increasing light, he could smell sulfur. Brimstone.
Fuck. He suddenly didn't want to know what Hell was going to be like. He closed his eyes. "Wake up, Dean. Wake up, now."
Cracked an eye open. Still in the void.
He stood, now that he could see that he wasn't going to drop off into an abyss, and walked towards the light. It reminded him of an exchange of witty banter he'd had with Sam. He'd said something about seeing light at the end of the tunnel and Sam had responded with, "That's hellfire, Dean." He chuckled despite himself.
Dean came to the end of the path he'd been walking. The smoothness became rocky. Found himself at the base of a foothill. Nowhere else to go but up, so he started to climb.
It didn't take long to reach the top and he saw that Hell really was a pit. Well, at least, Ruby's version.
The pit was littered with black boulders, some smaller ones glowing red-orange, a river of – well, it reminded Dean of a lava flow.
He remembered that, back in Ruby's day – when she was human, a lot of people believed that Hell was a place below, a place underground. Lava was in the earth's core. This could be somewhat the Hell Ruby had imagined when she was growing up.
The pit was vast, more like a giant crater, and he was halfway down the side before he could see a body suspended some thirty, forty, maybe sixty or so feet in the air. Circling it, weaving around the convulsing limbs, was the swirling black substance of a demon.
The body, he recognized, belonged to Ruby.
She twisted and screamed. Cried. Begged.
And he couldn't stop himself. "Ruby!"
Dean ran towards her as the demon stopped it's swarming, becoming a roiling black cloud below Ruby's body. And he could swear he felt it staring at him.
Part of Dean wished this was no more than some B-movie set where the monsters had visible costume zippers and everything was plastic and the river of lava was made of Jell-o or something. That Ruby was held above the ground by invisible cables, and that the demon was...well, he didn't know what the demon would be made out of in that scenario. He desperately wanted to take part in all that suspension of disbelief stuff, but knew that this was all too real.
He could die here.
"Ruby!" he called again, the demon moving towards him, slowly gaining speed. "Ruby!"
Her body free-fell to the ground, landing with a sickening thud that would've shattered a mere mortal's bones. She rolled to her side and looked at him, bleeding from her mouth, her nose.
The black cloud stilled, reversed, forced itself down Ruby's throat.
Her eyes were a luminous onyx when she looked at him again. Stared at him with open curiosity and a great interest before recognition and confusion set in, like she suddenly remembered him. "Dean. How'd you...?"
Dean helped her to her feet. "I, uh."
"The silene capensis." She made that how-could-you-be-so-stupid face he was used to seeing on Sam. "Dean."
His eyes went wide, incredulous. "What?"
Ruby's jaw muscles twitched. Then, she strode towards him and grabbed his arm, pulling him along with her. "I swear to God, Dean."
"Do you even believe in God, Ruby?" All cocky, eyebrows raised and wearing a smirk.
She sighed, rolling her eyes. "Let's get you out of here, Nancy Drew."